Open mike 09/11/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 9th, 2011 - 133 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

133 comments on “Open mike 09/11/2011”

  1. Grim but not unexpected, the latest Fairfax poll shows a Labour slide to 25.9%
    Greens are the main beneficiary, up to 12.6%
    National are steady on 52.5%

    Apart from a miracle survival for Winston Peters the only logical balance to National’s power is United Future./a>

    • chris73 1.1

      Probably just a rogue poll

      • mickysavage 1.2.1

        Hmmm, what happened there?

        What I meant to say was oh well Petey at least there is a silver lining. It looks like United Follicles and ACT are terminal and will not be back. Good riddance.

        • felix 1.2.1.1

          That’s exactly what I assumed you meant micky.

          • mickysavage 1.2.1.1.1

            Weird but I started to type it, the WYSWIG kicked in, I then had to click in the window to type the rest and then posted but only the bit that I initially typed showed up.

        • Pete George 1.2.1.2

          I suspect you are a lot more worried than me Micky.

          I’ve already achieved some of my goals. And I’ve set in place something that could make quite a difference in Dunedin. Even Labour people are supporting it.

          Every realised opportunity on top of that is a bonus.

          And I’m having a lot of fun too. I sense you’re not smiling.

          • marty mars 1.2.1.2.1

            smug little shit aren’t you pete

            your head is getting so big I’m surprised you haven’t done your leadership challenge yet what with you being so influencial and all

            • Pete George 1.2.1.2.1.1

              I’m not after leadership, I’m just helping generate more interest in active politics in Dunedin.

              • that’s a pity pete because i would think you’d be a good leader of UF and you would have much more influence to present your ideas on the way to go.

                and whilst i do think you are smug I don’t think you are a poo so sorry about that.

              • mik e

                Waking up and down pinehill is as close as you will get

              • fender

                Hope you get the silver crown off Dunne when you take over leadership Pete…good luck and stay off the kronic when wandering the trails…you might get lost in the wilderness.

          • AAMC 1.2.1.2.2

            I’d be worried if I was the Nat’s, I wouldn’t want this next term, particularly as the biggest cheerleaders of neo-libealism.

            Let’s say they win an outright majority, good luck to them explaining the implosions of their mantra as the depression really bites and anger really hits the streets.

            Here is an Australian economist pointing out how Austerity is killing the Ozzie economy, which holds two warnings for us, the Ozzies upon who’s economy we rely is now on a serious slow down, secondly, responsible for this is a mantra of surplus, which is Nationals platform. Careful what you promise…

            “Employment growth has been virtually zero for some months and other indicators of growth are faltering.

            The ABS published the latest International Trade in Goods and Services, Australia for September 2011 today which showed the trade surplus (before invisibles) narrowing with exports falling on the back of declining terms of trade (so prices rather than volumes falling).”

            http://bilbo.economicoutlook.net/blog/?p=16807

            • Puddleglum 1.2.1.2.2.1

              There’s another angle.

              The right may well relish the prospect of reigning during a global economic crisis. That allows severe measures to be put through under the justification that the foul-tasting medicine is our only chance at economic survival.

              Aka, the shock doctrine. 

    • Carol 1.3

      I’m with Chris Trotter on the over-reliance on polls:

      http://bowalleyroad.blogspot.com/2011/11/no-time-for-instant-verdicts.html

      Pondering these issues, the question arises: Is it wise for the news media to devote so much effort to telling the voter who’s “ahead” and who’s “behind” – as if elections were indeed nothing more than horse-races? Surely, the most important democratic function of the media is to subject the various political contenders’ claims to the critical scrutiny of expert witnesses? Publishing dispassionate critiques of contending policy; broadcasting fair and balanced accounts of the candidates behaviour on the hustings; and then allowing the voters to make up their own minds. Isn’t this the media’s most important contribution to the electoral process?

      I usually don’t comment on polls, however good or bad they look for the left. I just get fed up with the way the media focuses more on them than on a fair discussion of policies.

        • Carol 1.3.1.1

          I think the NZ MSM coverage of politics and elections has jumped the shark.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jumping_the_shark

          Jumping the shark is an idiom, first employed to describe a moment in the evolution of a television show when it begins a decline in quality that is beyond recovery.
          […]
          The usage of “jump the shark” has subsequently broadened beyond television, indicating the moment in its evolution when a brand, design, or creative effort moves beyond the essential qualities that initially defined its success, beyond relevance or recovery.

      • Pete George 1.3.2

        I agree, but like it or not the media control most of the narrative and have a large influence on what gets attention and what gets ignored. And they know their influence.

        But they don’t always get it right, they have been caught out before by being too caught up in their own game to see what’s happening beyond their sphere. Elections are one time the voters take control.

        • LynW 1.3.2.1

          Agreed re the media controling the narrative. If polls must be used, todays headline could have read;

          Goff rapidly rising from 9.1 to 13.5 per cent in the preferred prime minister stakes!

          • Carol 1.3.2.1.1

            And if they include the 14.3% undecideds in their overall result, National was selected by 44.9% of those questioned, so in no way does that support the headline that National could govern alone.

            • Jenny 1.3.2.1.1.1

              Fairfax media poll

              Nats 52.5%

              Lab. 25.9%

              Greens 12.6%

              Undecided a Whopping 14.3%

              The poll may show a historic record breaking landslide to National is in the offing.

              On the other hand there is a real possibility of their defeat as well.

              If the undecided go with Labour and the Greens, it would make a total of 52.8%

              So come on Labour where is that break through policy release we have been promised?

              And no more non-promises

              How about turning empty rhetoric about “Axing the Tax” and commit to reversing the increase in GST to 15% on immediate return to the Treasury benches.

              How about a promise to seriously investigate an Financial Transactions Tax as a way of combating the fiscal deficit.

              Come on Labour time to pull out all the stops.

              With these poll results:

              What have you got to lose?

              • Colonial Viper

                Its a mistake to think that policies are going to win this election.

                National is not polling at the 50% level based on its policies, or the lack of them.

                How about turning empty rhetoric about “Axing the Tax” and commit to reversing the increase in GST to 15% on immediate return to the Treasury benches.

                You mean that you would like Labour to start their term by adding another $3B hole to the Government’s annual accounts?

              • gareth

                But you’d have to suspect that a large portion of ‘undecided’ will remain undecided and not bother to turn up on polling day…

                • Colonial Viper

                  Yep. Labour’s chances go down if turn out is only 78% or 79%.

                  It goes up if turn out is 83% or 84%.

                  • gingercrush

                    Turnout will be under 75%.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      In a turnout scenario that low, Labour will get slammed.

                    • Chris

                      Why do you think a low turnout would help National?

                      I would’ve thought that a lot of the people who wouldn’t turn out to vote are people who would vote Nation and think oh well National are going to win anyway no point me going down there.

                      Whereas people against National would have more incentive to go vote?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Don’t think so. I’m thinking that it’s going to be closer to 90%.

              • Lanthanide

                Actually I support the 15% GST. A tax on consumption is good (although regressive).

                What I don’t support was the tax-switch that went to the top 10%.

                If we’d had a tax package that put GST up to 15% and compensated those on the lowest incomes at 3x the rate that GST was supposed to rise on paper, we would be much better off.

                • felix

                  In theory yes.

                  In practice those on the lowest wages aren’t paying enough income tax to make that adjustment without more of the clumsy employer subsidy WFF.

                  The answer is to get wages up, not meddle at the edges of the tax system.

                • Reality Bytes

                  I agree with more emphasis being placed on a consumption based tax rather than a personal income tax in principle, but realise it’s hard to implement GST as a significant proportion. Avoiding GST is the only national sport in this country to exceed rugby in popularity.

                  I don’t have a problem with a greater than 15% consumption tax in principle since it favors us being more resource efficient. And I appreciate the goals of lowering personal income tax, since it favors rewarding the efforts of the individual. And perhaps the only answer to fill the shortfall is a CGT tax, and more effort to stay on top of the freeloaders and loopholes.

              • Jenny
                How the heck can you read a defeat in those numbers for National???

              • Jenny

                So all 14% of the undecided has to go to national?

        • AAMC 1.3.2.2

          “but like it or not the media control most of the narrative”

          Unless you’re under 30, they certainly haven’t controlled the narrative of the Global OWS movement, they have been ignored and circumvented by it.

          It’s a changing world Pete, not by Nov 26th, but it’s changing…

        • Puddleglum 1.3.2.3

          Yes, but that simply leads to more headlines: ‘Shock Result!!’; ‘Voters Defy Polls!!’

          All of which is just another step in the ‘create a story’ journalistic dance that passes for serious commentary. 

    • Ben 1.4

      I, for one, can’t wait to tick the box for Chauvel when I cast my vote in Ohariu. I’ve encouraged everyone I know to do the same.

      The sooner we get rid of United Future and their “This garbage is not worth replying to” couldn’t-give-a-toss-about-anyone-who’s-not-like-me politics, the better.

      If you don’t know what a callous and nasty piece of work Peter Dunne really is, you only need to read this: http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0308/S00132.htm

      I can’t believe you’d fall in line behind this guy, Petey. You might be doing some good, but the fact that you would consider a man so obviously missing any sort of empathy as a “leader” clearly signifies your inability to judge character.

      • Puddleglum 1.4.1

        Unguarded ‘honesty’ always gets them in the end.

        Peter Dunne has some explaining to do.

        So much for Mr Sensible/Reasonable.

      • Deadly_NZ 1.4.2

        Just do what I do. I ignore him, i don’t read any of his drivel, i don’t reply to any of his drivel. Means I save about an hour a day.

  2. Jenny 2

    At last….. Thank God. After more than a decade and despite a change in US administration, and people’s high hopes for Obama, the Bush Doctrine is finally being challenged on the world stage by a major statesman.

    Finally……

    A major world leader who makes sense.

    “There is no military solution to the Iranian nuclear problem as there is no military solution to any other problem in the modern world,” ……….

    …….“This is confirmed to us every day when we see how the problems of the conflicts, around Iran are being resolved – whether Iraq or Afghanistan, or what is happening in other countries in the region. Military intervention only leads to many times more deaths and human suffering.”

    Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister

    Sergei Lavrov, has served as Russian foreign minister since 2004.

    ……talks between Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States, Germany and Iran should be resumed as soon as possible.

    Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister

  3. Scotty 3

    I noticed the latest Faifax poll totals out at 114.3%.
    Its not clear,whether Nationals support is 52.5% or 52.5/114.3
    If its the later ,this mornings headline that “More than half of people spoken to, prefer National” is not only misleading, its factually incorrect.

    • Carol 3.1

      They haven’t counted the 14.3% undecideds.
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/fairfax-media-poll/5931281/National-heading-for-outright-win

      According to my calculatins if the undecideds are included, National is favoured by 44.99% of those questioned.

      857-1000 people polled is not a very big sample.

      • Tiger Mountain 3.1.1

        Why don’t these polling pricks just announce Labour has dropped to zero support and be done with it? The Shark has been jumped alright.

        Warning; anecdote follows: I was excluded from a telephone poll the other night because my age group quota was covered already apparently. I asked what if I was under 40 or 30 would there be space for me, the person said she could not tell me that, but after some cajoling said “probably” before ending the call. It is not just that the polls are bent it is the behavioural effect they have on some people. I have heard two people say they are not going to bother voting because John Key has it stitched up. Brilliant.

        • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.1

          I have heard two people say they are not going to bother voting because John Key has it stitched up.

          Then I suggest talking to them and disabusing them of that by pointing out that if they vote Jonkey doesn’t have it stitched up.

      • NickS 3.1.2

        857-1000 people polled is not a very big sample.

        It’s not the size so much, but how you sample that determines the statistical rigour 😛

  4. felix 4

    What kind of dickhead dumps a thousand legal-sized snapper?

    Also, yet again a National minister (this time Ryall) has refused to front up on Radio NZ to debate his opposition spokesperson.

    Oh well, at least it’s not anything important like the FUCKING HEALTH PORTFOLIO, right?

    How many times is that? Is anyone in the MSM reporting this pattern?

    • ianmac 4.1

      It amazes me that so few Government Ministers front for interviews Felix. Especially the PM who only fronts to give statements but not interviews as he is “too busy.”
      After all the fuss about the alleged affront to Democracy before the 2008 election there is silence about the affront to Democracy by the No-show Government MPs.
      As a voter, I feel angry that I am being treated as a fool.

      • felix 4.1.1

        I feel that too, ianmac, and I reckon many others would too if they knew the contempt with which their govt is treating them.

        But who’s going to let them know?

      • Bored 4.1.2

        Ian / Felix,

        Please understand no interviews will be given, only sound bites and definitely flattering photos (but only of the beloved leader)..

    • Ianupnorth 4.2

      Word on the street re. health is that the plans for slashing are well under way
      First Bill English’s little bro was brought in (on $400K p.a.) to scale down the MoH.
      Second, the whole preventative sector will be deconstructed. They have already started the merging of ALAC and the Health Sponsorship Council.
      Third, once upon a time we had 21 DHB’s, then we had 20 when Southland was swallowed up by Otago. There are strong signs that come June next year there will be a maximum of 14 DHB’s. It is interesting that one DHB has already announced the retirement of their CEO exactly at this time, and speculation has been rife regarding its merger with two adjacent DHB’s, so much so there is actually documentation with a logo kicking around.
      Expect to see the private sector picking up more and more work, remember those ‘free visits to GP’s for under 6’s after hours’ are subject to cuts elsewhere.

  5. M 5

    ‘I have heard two people say they are not going to bother voting because John Key has it stitched up. Brilliant.’

    Just what they want TM – have they no go in them?

    The left may not be victorious – heaven help us all but at least those out there doing practical stuff are helping the cause. Where would Labour have been in ’35 if they were not dogged in their pursuit?

    Had cause for optimism for our Labour candidate as the National candidate was mercilessly heckled and booed at a meeting last week – maybe those on the sharp edge of things are starting to get a clue.

  6. Lazy Susan 6

    It’s not “if” but “when”. At some point the slumbering masses will wake up and realise they’ve been duped by the smiley snake. Retribution will be swift and savage.

    Go Labour and the Greens just keep prodding and shaking those sleep-walking Kiwis there’s still time to wake them before the 26th. And when the tide turns just watch the MSM rush to scramble on board.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      And when the tide turns just watch the MSM rush to scramble on board.

      No they won’t, they’ll still talking up Jonkey as a Great Statesman and National as messengers from God. Same as they do now.

  7. Tiger Mountain 7

    I don’t let people off the hook re enrolling and voting M, am involved with producing union election publications too. More people will realise pretty soon that they cannot eat aspiration.

    • Ianupnorth 7.1

      Agree, the important group is the young; my daughter says she is voting Labour for the local seat and Green for party vote – as are many of her friends. We need to mobilise the young to protect their future.

  8. Olwyn 8

    The “National could govern alone” narrative depends on the exclusion of the undecideds, and even here, where they rate a mention, they are excluded from the calculation.

    However the polls do not include those who have lost confidence in this country and have voted with their feet. To quote from the Herald article posted below: “(Dr Newell’s) research shows that New Zealand’s losses (to Australia) are higher among low-skilled and semi-skilled workers, including tradespeople, than among professional people, who benefit from New Zealand’s lower-than-Australia taxes on high incomes.

    But almost half of the net loss in the past year was of people in their twenties and thirties, leaving a big hole in New Zealand’s working-aged population.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10764731

    Let’s hope that many of these people are still registered to vote here, prefer policies that would make their home country more welcoming, and are able to throw a spanner into the works.

    • Blue 8.1

      Today is the day that registered voters overseas can start to cast their votes.

    • Lanthanide 8.2

      That’s an interesting point, really.

      There are lots of NZers that live in Australia. None of them ever show up in the polls these companies do, and yet they can cast special votes.

  9. Colonial Viper 9

    Israeli PM a “liar”. Says Sarkozy and Obama!!!

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/nov/08/sarkozy-obama-netanyahu-gaffe-microphone

    Damn those press microphones.

  10. ianmac 10

    After the discussion on the “invincibility” of National in the polls the Herald published this in relation to their Mood of the Nation.
    “When the responses of youth voters (aged 18 to 24) are looked at in isolation, Labour has turned the tables on National, with the support of 46 per cent of young voters against National’s 29 per cent.”
    Only a tiny sample but interesting.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10764668

    • The Voice of Reason 10.1

      The hard part is getting that segment of the population enrolled and voting, Ian. The point of the MSM’s meme of National strolling to victory is to encourage people not to bother voting because the election is a done deal. This is intended to become a self fulfilling prophesy; if the Herald et al can convince swing voters not to bother turning out to the booths, then National win by default.

  11. gingercrush 11

    Jim Anderton is a loser with a pathetic attitude

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10764687

    • Lanthanide 11.1

      No, it’s not a pathetic attitude.

      The law is a dog. It needs to be tided up with some common sense provisions.

      I assume you’re in favour of WhaleOil and others wasting police time with frivolous complaints?

      • Chris 11.1.1

        Dosn’t Whaleoil just waste the Electoral Commission’s time. They are the ones who referred it to the police – wouldn’t have thought they would do that if they thought it was frivolous.

  12. Adrian 12

    Something is not going right? National is calling in Nat helpers from as far away as 300kms to help with canvassing in Chch. Gives a lie to the polls.

    • felix 12.1

      National are getting desperate. Can feel it in the aura around their paid activists lately, someone’s cracking the whip real hard.

    • gingercrush 12.2

      Um Christchurch is a Labour strong-hold. National only hold one electorate seat, Ilam. The voting there outside Ilam and Waimakariri tends to be 50-50 in other electorates or Labour outperforming National. Thus it makes sense for National to work harder in an area where they don’t do very well.

      I just wish they gave more of a fight to Wigram. Because if you combine Labour’s vote with Progressives from 2008 you get a 2200 vote gap. If ever they’re going to take Wigram now would be a time. Its an electorate that is changing with a growing Asian influence. It shouldn’t be a left-wing cakewalk but at the moment it is.

    • Draco T Bastard 12.3

      They’ll be getting real busy then:

      The Prime Minister has ruffled people’s feathers after being shown on television talking during a minute’s silence for Christchurch quake victims.

      Although, I actually get more annoyed the waste of resources that is the temporary stadium being labelled as “good news”. Talk about getting the priorities completely wrong. Fiddling while Rome Burns seems to be modus operandi for this government.

  13. National’s Election Hoarding’s 11

    “ACT have been very stable, so ACT returning to Parliament is something I’d like to see as opposed to something I wouldn’t like to see;” John Key said.

    • ianmac 14.1

      Does the with-holding that the ACT nod, indicate something? Key will only nod if he believes they really really need ACT. Isn’t that a bit contemptuous? Discard the voters if we don’t need them.
      “I will only have a date with you if I can’t find anyone better.”

  14. Morrissey 16

    Memo “seanmaitland”

    Some time ago now I refuted some remarkably foolish and ignorant statements you made about the running of the 2007 World Cup. You have for some reason (embarrassment, perhaps?) not replied.

    To jog your memory, you can look over the débâcle of your attempt to disrespect French rugby HERE….

    ABs vs Wallabies

  15. AAMC 17

    Helen & Mark, Cameron’s big society, great cause for inspiration for Key’s welfare policy.

    These people committed suicide once they were denied their benefits, I guess it saves Cameron & National, on trains and gas…

  16. uke 18

    Fairly major news just announced: Berlusconi resigns.
     

    Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has said he will resign after suffering a humiliating setback in parliament that showed a party revolt had stripped him of a majority.
    Berlusconi confirmed a statement from President Giorgio Napolitano that he would step down as soon as parliament passed urgent budget reforms demanded by European leaders after Italy was sucked into epicentre of the euro zone debt crisis.
     

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      WAIT ON.

      He said that he WILL resign ONCE new budget measures are passed.

      Berlusconi ain’t going no where yet. That boy still has tricks up his sleeve.

      • rosy 18.1.1

        Exactly – don’t believe it until it happens. He has more time to manipulate the ‘traitors’ who voted against him to voting for him the longer he stays.

  17. randal 19

    major non news is that dimwit from the dompost tracy watkins crowing that kweewee and his gang re going to win th election outright.
    in a pigs bum lady.
    you might be stupid after too many rubber chickens legs and hi fat sosage rollsa t bellamys but the public aren’t.

  18. The Nats have just announced they are going to further slow down the introduction of the ETS.  This will further blow out their deficit.

    Why don’t they just take it out back and shoot it in the head to put it out of its misery? 

    • The Voice of Reason 20.1

      Here’s the ideal Tory to wield the gun, Mickey:
       
      National Party candidate calls own party policy a ‘con’.

      • NickS 20.1.1

        Another rouge Fed. Farmer it seems, replete with the usual dubious weaselling disclaimer:

        Mr McKelvie acknowledged the climate was changing, but said he did not necessarily accept the science behind climate change.

        • The Voice of Reason 20.1.1.1

          McKelvie’s none too bright. He made the papers (and got labelled by David Farrar as ‘stupid’) for putting his election signage up earlier than the local council by-laws allowed. That’s the council where he’s currently mayor. D’oh!

          I’m also told that he said at one electorate meeting that he would not campaign in the north of the Rangitikei electorate because ‘they’re all poor, maori or both up there’.

          • NickS 20.1.1.1.1

            So in other words he’s one the old boys representing National’s true blue roots, which wouldn’t be complete without being a racist and treating the poor as shit…

  19. A different attack, this time Gareth Hughes on Labour. The Dom Post has just had a Live Chat with the Ohariu candidates. Hughes carefully phrased round Labour in relation to their electorate support arrangement, but closed off the chat with a poke at Labour’s filibustering. Hughes versus Chauvel.

  20. randal 22

    wow pete geroge. thats really scintillating prose to say that Labour is going to open a big can of whipass on the hairdo that dunnit hides behind.

  21. Carol 23

    The number of articles appearing on Stuff today that talk up National and talk down Labour makes me wonder if the righties are running a little scared.

  22. ianmac 24

    “Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater has been denied leave to appeal his convictions for deliberately breaking court suppression orders. ” -The Court of Appeal
    So that is that.

  23. Draco T Bastard 25

    Slice of asset sale profits to go to irrigation – National
    So, selling state assets now produces profits? Anyone got any actual data to back that up? Because I’m pretty sure, once we take into account inflation from the time the assets were built until now, and revenue loss we won’t be seeing any profits from selling them. What we will see, under proper accounting, is a massive loss.

  24. Jenny 26

    MANA PRESS RELEASE
    9 NOVEMBER 2011

    Local MP “only good for a cup of tea…”

    MANA’s Manukau East candidate John Minto has challenged the long-serving incumbent Labour MP Ross Robertson to a public debate on the failure of the MP to effectively represent one of New Zealand’s poorest electorate in his 20 years in parliament.

    “I’ve taught for over 10 years in the electorate and can’t recall a single instance of the MP speaking out strongly for the most vulnerable families in New Zealand who have been hammered by the economic policies of successive Labour and National governments.

    Robertson is master of the meaningless press release and space-filler public comments but he has failed to represent the voters of the electorate.

    I was with one of his constituents a couple of weeks back and she said to me “Ross is only good for a cup of tea…”

    I’m not sure about the cup of tea but I know he’s been missing in action for 20 years.

    John Minto

    Copy of the Open letter sent

    9 November 2011

    Kia ora Ross,

    Challenge to public debate

    I’m writing to challenge you to a public debate in the Manukau East electorate at any time up till the last day of campaigning – although the sooner it takes place the better for voters to consider the issues before polling day.

    I decided to stand against you in this electorate because in the time you have been the MP the people of Manukau East have gone backwards with low-pay, high unemployment and endemic poverty.

    I taught in this electorate for over 10 years and have seen so many Maori and Pacific families struggling to maintain their self-respect and dignity in the face of the awful social impact of the economic policies of Labour and National. Yet in all your time as MP I can’t recall a single occasion when you have spoken out strongly for the most vulnerable people of your electorate.

    For example while I was teaching at Tangaroa College from 2000 to 2004 the number of Pacific Island families in severe hardship increased from 16% to 30%. You were the MP and Labour was in government but you were silent.

    It seems that throughout your time as an MP you have collected a big salary, eaten your lunch and become patron of several sports clubs – what else?

    In the last few days I’ve been reading the Statistics Department quarterly income survey and found that (adjusted for inflation) the last three years have been even more disastrous for Maori and Pacific families who make up the majority of people in your electorate.

    The median income for Maori from 2008 to 2011 is nearly 16% lower – they are $86 a week worse off. For Pacific Islanders it is even worse – they are over $100 a week worse off.

    You weren’t in government then Ross but that’s no excuse for remaining silent while your constituents suffer. You are their MP. It seems to me you have used these people as voting fodder to give you a politician-for-life lifestyle.

    The statistics for pokie machines, liquor outlets and loan sharks are also appalling – the parasites on poverty have been active in the electorate but you have been inert. Have you ever raised your voice above a whisper on any of these issues?

    I was with one of your constituents a couple of weeks back and she said to me “Ross is only good for a cup of tea…” I can see no evidence to think otherwise.

    It seems you have been missing in action for 20 years Ross.

    These are the issues I want to raise in public with you and give you the opportunity to respond in public. The people of this electorate deserve to hear you speak out on your own behalf for the dreadful situation you have remained silent about for 20 years.

    I will make myself available at any time and any place within the electorate for the debate. Please contact me or my campaign manager as soon as possible to make appropriate arrangements.

    I wait to hear your positive response.

    Regards,

    John Minto

  25. aerobubble 27

    List MPs should be ordered on the
    number of votes they attract, so
    removing the gift giving of party
    power brokers. Would Garrett have
    won any votes once his child
    idenity fraud came to light?

    Greens have too much freedom to
    choose who is on their list.

    Remove the 5% rule, remove the
    one constituent MP rule.

    Strictly proportional representation,
    you win an MP (and they did win an
    electorate) then the MP comes from
    the MP of that party with the
    highest vote. So if Banks gets the
    highest vote of ACT MPs, he would
    be first on the list even if he
    lost Epson, but ACT got enough
    proportion of the vote.

    • insider 27.1

      We vote for a list but not the individuals on it unless they are in an electorate, and many do not compete in them. In some of the STV systems voters get the chance to rank the lists too. Ireland I think is the most noteable (but I may be out of date there).

      • aerobubble 27.1.1

        My poitn was, keep MMP but order list MPs according to how many votes
        they got. This would turn list MP into local MPs who have an interest in
        their constitutiences.

  26. ianmac 28

    Just happened on this Editorial at the Manawatu Standard and well said Warwick Rasmussen.
    Great to have a byline.
    Agree about the response from spectators at Leaders Debates is based on responses to slanging.
    And the weird nature of poll focus perhaps being used to steer voters or even create a partisan climate.
    Good work Warwick.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/manawatu-standard/opinion/5914516/Editorial-Slanging-match-cheapens-election

  27. Draco T Bastard 29

    In celebration of our movie makers 😀

  28. ianmac 30

    John Key gets interviewed by an expert!!!!!

    Just flicked onto Close Up tonight and surprised to see the unsmiling Mike Hoskins interviewing (!) John Key!!! (I bet John thought he would get the soft touch from Mark Sainsbury.)
    But no! Immigration to Australia and advantage of Australia over NZ and how it is not really an issue to Key. But Mike says to Key you cannot deny it. The facts are there.
    End of interview. Key mask drops. He looks off camera right and does not look to be a happy chappy.

    Not up yet on Replay but wonder if it gets pulled for “technical reasons.”

        • ianmac 30.1.1.1

          Did you notice the Key face in the last 3 seconds?
          I think that he was on the back foot and worked hard at his usual defence, ” Lets take a step back and look…..”

          • RedLogix 30.1.1.1.1

            Yes but note how the item is headlined in glowing terms for Key…

          • The Voice of Reason 30.1.1.1.2

            The eyes! Those lying eyes! It’s more obvious on the link you provided, Ian, there’s a second more before the cut at the very end. Shifty as.

            • Draco T Bastard 30.1.1.1.2.1

              I wouldn’t call it “shifty” so much as worried. Key knew that his lies hadn’t been bought.

          • Akldnut 30.1.1.1.3

            ” Lets take a step back and look…..” 4 times – structure and position the conversation so that people feel they are removed from the stance originally taken whilst trying to see it from a veiw that is in your favour.

      • Draco T Bastard 30.1.2

        He (jonkey) spent quite a lot of that in interview trying to deny the real numbers and inserting his own made up ones like the BS that wages have increased when, in real terms, most incomes have actually gone down.

        • Puddleglum 30.1.2.1

          Key keeps using that ‘after tax’ figure.

          So, his solution to the wage gap is to eliminate all income tax? That would create some interesting fiscal consequences just to claim achievement of what was clearly empty electioneering rhetoric in 2008.

          He admits as much when he talked in the interview as if ‘closing the gap’ is (and was?) a ‘silly idea’. As Hoskings said, ‘so you didn’t believe in the Task Force when you set it up?’.

          It would have been good to know that he thought it was really silly when, three years ago, he was standing in empty rugby stadia and fronting billboards with planes flying to Australia emblazoned across them. 

  29. Now here’s an interesting headline:

    National’s moderate approach to emissions scheme

    I remember the editor of The Press once explaining, in response to a letter to the Editor about a supposedly biased headline, that the headline wasn’t biased because the wording acknowledged that the offending words were from a quote of a politician by having scare quotes around the phrase.

    It turns out from the article that “moderate approach” were John Key’s words. Unacknowledged. No scare quotes. 

  30. Looks like the jug is at the boil and the doilies are being laid out.

    Anyone for a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party?

  31. randal 33

    here is the beef in the wairarapa. the assets will be sold to pay for a water retention and storage scheme in two locations, upper and lower on the ruamahanga.
    the deal should be that the state tenders out the bid and then cuts a deal with the operator rather than shift investment wholesale and let valuable income streams escape from the country.
    that is nationals policy.
    you know its okay and will probably go ahead but it should have been in the public debate long ago instead of released under what I suspect was intense pressure to make it public.
    that is what national has become.
    they prefer secret deals rather than good old fashioned public debate.

  32. Draco T Bastard 34

    Why patents needs to be reviewed and/or abolished

    Barnes & Noble is asking the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate Microsoft’s patent-licensing tactics, accusing the software giant of trying to thwart competition with flimsy infringement claims.

    Because they’re seriously getting in the way of innovation and being used to reward people and companies for work that they didn’t do.

  33. RedBaron 35

    I’ve been going to electorate meetings.

    Interesting to see the amount being thrown at the Nat candidate. Asset sales top of the list (the mixed ownership line was followed by the whole hall chanting “sales”), followed by the debt lies (we’ll spend it on this or maybe that), then “when is the minimum wage likely to be increased we’ve been waiting 20 years”, too many in prisons, education national standards, why the bene bashing? and the last few questions were on local or smaller issues. This was a packed hall in an upper income suburb, SES 10, and I really don’t think the Nats had 52% of the hall or anything near that.

    Any chance of electorate meeting reports from elsewhere?

  34. jaymam 36

    At the Remuera election forum tonight there were five candidates.

    Here’s everybody being reminded that Brash should really be standing in Epsom but few would vote for him. Banks on the left:
    http://i40.tinypic.com/1zdyr1v.jpg

    Banks had to put up with the Brash photo in front of the lectern for 18 minutes:
    http://i40.tinypic.com/23ralx3.jpg

    until Banks could stand it no longer, and he chucked the picture of his leader out the back:
    http://i41.tinypic.com/2nc17au.jpg

  35. awesome photos jaymam

    that photo of brash is scary

  36. jaymam 38

    John Banks holding his leader Brash by the hair:
    http://i42.tinypic.com/350s6ye.jpg

    Feel free to publish these photos elsewhere!

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