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Open mike 11/03/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:45 am, March 11th, 2015 - 170 comments
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openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

170 comments on “Open mike 11/03/2015”

  1. Paul 1

    Convenient for John Key that this was knocked off the top of the news.


    I do wonder what China thinks of us acting as the US’s puppet in the Pacific.

    An independent foreign policy?
    Gone by lunchtime.

    • Paul 1.1

      ‘A typical example of GCSB operations is spying on Vietnamese diplomatic communications. Vietnam has friendly relations with New Zealand and is a growing trading partner. It poses no security or terrorist threat to New Zealand, the traditional explanation for the GCSB given to the public, but it is still on the GCSB spying list. The only conceivable explanation for New Zealand spying on Vietnam is as part of broader NSA-driven strategy.’

      Ashamed what our government is doing to our reputation as a decent fair country.
      Not in my name, John Key.

      • Tracey 1.1.1

        here’s the thing Paul. Wayne Mapp, Tim Groser and others say the people of NZ cannot read the TPP before it is signed to preserve the confidentiality of negotiations. BUT, here is the flaw, we are finding out that at least the USA (and probably everyone in 5 eyes) is spying like fuck on each other. There is NO SECRET to be preserved for purposes of negotiation. After so many years of negotiating the USA will be well aware through its spying of exactly what its partners are saying about the TPP and their bottom lines… To think otherwise is a joke.

        • Colonial Rawshark

          Indeed. We already know that the USA, with the help of their FVEY partner Canada, spied on their “friends” and “allies” at the G8 and G20 summits. This is more of the same, and the assumption that the authorities are frequently and directly lying to us about their activities, intentions and plans can I feel at this point, be taken for granted.

        • Old Mickey

          Once the parties have negotiated a deal, does it not get tabled and debated in Parliament BEFORE it is signed by the Givernment ? Is that not the time for rational debate about what is in the agreement ?

          • One Anonymous Bloke


            The public has every right to give the negotiators a steer, just like any other affected stakeholder.

            Love how you trust these bureaucrats to do the right thing: your opinions are all over the place 😆

            • Old Mickey

              Love how you dont trust these bureaucrats !
              I dont particluarly trust this lot either, but the negotiators have been accessible and relatively open when asked questions. I expect them to do their job, put up teh best deal they can get AND, then leave it to elected officilas and the PUBLIC to debatye and sign-off – unlike faceless Akl City bureacrats who cant follow the RMA process correctly.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Don’t whine to me when Rodney Hide’s faith-based incompetence comes back to bite you. No room for elected officials in your right wing trainwreck.

          • Tautoko Mangō Mata

            The Cabinet decides what to negotiate, instructs the officials, signs the treaty and ratifies the TPPA, not the Parliament.

            From Professor Jane Kelsey:

            “One more time, Prime Minister, read the Cabinet Manual: Parliament does not get to ratify the TPPA!

            ‘How many times do the Prime Minister and other members of the government have to be hauled up for misrepresenting the role of Parliament in making treaties, especially the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement’, asked Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland.

            On NewstalkZB this morning John Key claimed, yet again, that ‘In the end, this thing has to go through our Parliament has to be ratified by our Parliament and has to bear scrutiny and I believe is in the best interests of New Zealand.’

            ‘The Prime Minister is either woefully ignorant of the fundamental process of treaty making, as set out in the Cabinet Manual, or he is wilfully misrepresenting the process to the New Zealand public’, Kelsey said.

            ‘Parliament’s role in treaty making is largely symbolic. It has no power to decide whether or not the TPPA should be signed or ratified and no ability to change its terms TPPA or require it to be renegotiated.’

            ‘The select committee process is a farcical exercise because its members know they cannot change the treaty.’

            ‘At most, Parliament could refuse to pass legislation that is required to bring a particular law into compliance with the TPPA. But the government will have plenty of non-legislative ways to achieve compliance,’ according to Kelsey.

            “‘Until the government makes Parliament responsible for overseeing, signing and then ratifying treaties, they should be honest with the New Zealand public: the Executive, in other words the Cabinet, decides what to negotiate, instructs the officials, signs the treaty and ratifies it’, Kelsey said.”


          • tracey

            You need to educate yourself. Once it is signed it is a done deal. I can’t believe anyone purporting to offer an opinion on that aspect doesn’t know that…

        • Old Mickey

          In Breaking News Stats NZ release GDP growth which shows that Northland has grown by 7.7%, Auckland 5.4%, Wellington 4.4%, Canterbury 10.6%……..Southland 11%.

          Bit of a fly in the oinment for Winston First in Northland…oh hang on, since when will facts actually get in his way of a good story. I can only imagine his two press releases ready for the this release – if Northland was 3%, then all fire and brimstone against the Govt (who he would do a deal with over labour in a heartbeat), OR< " there are lies, dam lies and statistics".

          • Adele

            Kiaora Old Mickey

            Bit of a fly in the oinment for Winston First in Northland…oh hang on, since when will facts actually get in his way of a good story.

            Old fellow, you need to change your prescription glasses. They’re obscuring the facts with statistics. When you do get clearance to drive North visit places other than Russell and Paihia.

            The Russian bloke building his billionaire’s bach could easily have skewed Northland’s growth statistics by that amount. And I counter your 7% growth with a perfect 10 in the deprivation index.

            Growth is uneven throughout Northland, and those eating barren dirt will vote Winston.

          • tracey

            Can you post the latest poverty statistics while you are researching, for Northland? Also unemployment against rest of country, health and criminal representation? Thanks in advance

            • Old Mickey

              Will Do, sure they will be released just like the Stats NZ release. Only poverty stat to hand is that while Parliamnet is sitting, all school kids in Northalnd (or maybe just 90% accoridng to Material Turei) are starving, yet during Parliamentary recess and school holidays, all kids seem ok and well fed.

    • tc 1.2

      They probably have a range of diversions ready to go at the drop of a dead cat whenever an issue is damaging the brand key.

      With MSM on side, a top drawer chock full of DP material, the whale and farrar blog on tap, the usual helpers in big business/rural and no end of favours owed by the sellout of sovereignty, laws and assets the choice of which diversion would be the toughest decision.

      • Paul 1.2.1

        When did the government first know of this threat?
        Was it really only yesterday?

        • crashcart

          No they were aware of the threat 3 months ago. They intended to release the information next week but decided that yesterday would be better /sarcasm for no expedient political purpose at all /end sarcasm.

          • Tracey

            No reporter that I heard asked the following question of Fonterra:

            Have you ever received any kind of threats to your product/customers before?

            If no. cool.

            If yes, how many and what made you think they didnt need to be taken seriously enough to go public…

            I would be surprised if some companies don’t get threats from time to time by nutters. I assume the PM is threatened all the time and only on occassions that suit (like justifying his large group of golf caddies) he tells us people threaten his life.

          • alwyn

            Alternatively, you could of course accept the perfectly reasonable explanation Key has given.
            The story had leaked to the press and TV1 and Fairfax (I think they were the two I heard him mention on Morning Report) had started to ask questions on the subject.
            Or you could do a Winston and claim that it all a conspiracy to take the spotlight of him.

            • McFlock

              The story had leaked to the press and TV1 and Fairfax

              Whom do we know has an office with a track record of leaking information to media?

              Take your time. It is a bit of a D’oh question, given that an entire book was published about it last year, but you might not be keeping up…

              • tracey

                Why won’t you just take Key’s word for it McFlock?


                • McFlock

                  It’s not me, it’s reality’s well-known liberal bias…

                • Amanda Atkinson

                  Yes Tracey, I agree. Of course they are playing politics with babies lives. Key, the cops, the Federated Farmers, MAF, MPI, they are all in in it together. It’s a conspiracy.

                  • tracey

                    Why do you think that a secret which had been kept by many for months suddenly got leaked yesterday?

                    Who do you think leaked it to the press Amanda?

                    • Amanda Atkinson

                      Tracey … John Key leaked it. It’s obvious. He doesn’t care about babies, he would leverage the fear of babies lives for political gain. That’s just the type of guy he his. He’s an evil despicable man. That he would jeopardise our international trade and trivialise babies lives in the name of political point scoring proves it. And all those people at MAF, MPI, the cops, and Fed farmers, hard to believe that all those people at high levels of these organisations got in behind Key, just to protect his political interests, but yes, they did, of course they did, all of them. Shame on them all.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      That explains the difference between the Police statements and those of the lovely shiny Prime Minister 😆

                    • Amanda Atkinson

                      One Anonymous Bloke .. yip, our shiny lovely PM turns out to be a reckless nut job, putting our number 1 industry at stake, and using the leverage of babies lives to do it. Gosh, who would have thought….

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      No, Amanda, please think more clearly: the official story is that the Police were going to go public next week and their public statement ‘we want to establish a dialogue’ directly contradicts Big-John’s fantasy epic. The one with the terrorists.

                    • tracey


                      Why not just answer the question? You clearly don’t think the PM did, fair enough. Who do you think leaked it ahead of the planned announcement next week and why?

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    1. Whoever sent the letters is playing with peoples’ lives. Chiefly their own, because I’d like to strangle them. No, not really.

                    2. The release of the information has been stage managed, and I am interested by the disparity between what the Police are saying – “criminal blackmail” – and what other parties with conflicting interests have been saying.

                    3. Sabin!

                    4. We spy on China. We steal their mail. Yay!


                    6. Nothing to see here.

            • tracey

              WHO leaked it alwyn… and why a week before the official announcement when so many people had kept it secret for over 3 months (according to Fed Farmers today).

              • alwyn

                How on earth should I know, Tracey?
                The statement was made that 1000 people already knew. If that is the case I am amazed it stayed quiet for so long.
                As you probably have heard telling one person a secret means it isn’t a secret anymore.
                Lets blame it on the person making the threat shall we? He/She/It, whatever, possibly has the main interest in getting it made public, wouldn’t you say?
                To repeat. I don’t know but I am amazed it took so long to get out.

                • Ergo Robertina

                  I agree – with this many in the loop and a testing regime that involved creating a brand new test, it’s surprising it didn’t come out sooner.
                  Thing is the timing could always appear suspicious, because this Government is always embroiled in some sort of dodging dealing or debacle.
                  If there’s one thing these boys value it’s money, and I think they would have been preferred this to stay quiet to avoid the market fallout.

                  • tracey

                    but this was our biggest industry. Leaking this information could irrepairedly hurt it yet Key has ordered no inquiry into who leaked it?

                    If 1000 people knew, then they know those 1000 people. Pretty quick investigation you’d think.

                    By the time this leak was made Ergo, the Government and agencies and industry already knew an announcement was to be made next week, so they already had their strategy for dealing with any fallout.

                    • Ergo Robertina

                      Weird – investigating 1000 people would be quick?
                      That’s just silly. Information gets out, randomly, it takes just one conversation with someone who has an interest in getting it to the public domain.
                      With some obvious exceptions science types who would be involved in testing often aren’t overly interested in politics, which might be why it took this long.

                    • tracey

                      if they know 1000 people know, they must know who they are. otherwise they don’t know 1000 people know.

                    • Ergo Robertina

                      Tracey, sorry, I don’t think your last comment makes a lot of sense.
                      How would investigating – not merely identifying – 1000 people be quick?

                    • tracey

                      cos whether it would be “pretty quick” is the nub of the issue, right?

                      my point was never about speed, which I assume you know, but the duplicity of no Investigation being demanded by the PM of this leak which threatened our largest export industry. But you keep focusing on “pretty quick” non investigation of the leak.

                      Apparently they have already identified the people who knew, so that part of the investigation is already completed before the investigation even begins. Ergo, it would be “pretty quick” compared to an investigation that hasn’t yet identified who had the information to leak.

                • tracey

                  the point is alwyn it DID stay quiet that long… and fell just a week short of the recently confirmed public announcement.

                  But don’t be so precious, I was responding to your comment

                  “you could of course accept the perfectly reasonable explanation Key has given.
                  The story had leaked to the press and TV1 and Fairfax (I think they were the two I heard him mention on Morning Report) had started to ask questions on the subject”…

                  Did I miss Key demanding the police immediately begin investigating the leak which could have harmed our largest industry? That would be perfectly reasonable and in line with his actions over other leaks and tea cup trangressions? You know, with our entire dairy industry at stake.

                  • alwyn

                    I think he took the entirely realistic view that with so many people involved it would be completely impossible to track it down.
                    Somebody who officially knew could probably cause the leak without even realising it. Suppose a scientist analysing the milk powder simply said to his/her partner, also a scientist, when asked what he/she had been up to at work. “I was trying to work out how to measure accurately the concentration of very diluted 1080 in milk powder. It is amazingly hard”. Their daughter hears and at school the next day talks to a friend. Friend asks parents, one being a reporter “what is 1080”.
                    Bang, the story is out. Now how are you going to track that down?

                    nb. All conversations are imaginary. I am not going to answer questions as to why I think it is hard to do or listen to people telling me I don’t know what I am talking about when I say that. I have made it up

        • Old Mickey

          November when letter received by Fonterra, they contacted Police and MPI.
          Over the last two days media have asked for comment from MPI and John Key about the treat. Rumours circulating over the last 2 weeks, see NZX on dairy stock trends.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            The Police will have contacted the govt immediately. Economic damage, no surprises, etc.

            And they’re saying criminal blackmail, while the hopelessly shiny Prime Minister says Labour did it too, or whatever a mouthpiece says.

      • Enough is Enough 1.2.2

        It is a diversion and nothing more.

        There is no threat. There never was a threat.

        Its John Key bullshit

        • Augustus

          I read a column by one Jamie Gray, business reporter, in the mobile version of the Herald this morning (can’t find it on the main page, didn’t try to hard). In it, he said that dairy futures had dropped by 15 % in the few days before this announcement. Fonterra couldn’t explain the drop with it’s own actions, so “deducted” that someone must have heard of this 3 months old threat.

          Now I can think of other reasons as to why dairy futures would drop. Unsustainable practices (“a form of eco-terrorism”) , a decision to sell yet more milk as the cheapest bulk product possible, or even a desire to dump on someone whose government spies on all and sundry.

          A diversion it is indeed, and an opportunity to blame those environmentalists for corporate stuff-ups. Watch dairy prices drop at the next auction, and the blame directed there rather than where it belongs. Again.

          • Paul

            Maybe China is annoyed we are spying on them
            So Key reveals the poison story the day before NZ’s spying on China is revealed in the news.

          • freedom

            Do you think it might have just been some folk who think next week’s dairy auction is going to be even worse than expected and lightened their portfolios accordingly ?

  2. b waghorn 2

    Mr Little gave a very good explanation on tv3 of the difference between the Epsom deal the nats do and what’s happening in northland with labour/nzf.
    He pointed out that the nats could win Epsom any time were as Labour haven’t held northland for 70 years.

    • Tracey 2.1

      Stop that!

    • man this “can’t win, won’t win, never won” bullshit is really ripping my undies – personally I can’t see the ‘middle’ liking that too much – it goes against the prevailing narrative of our age and society. And whether true or not (beyond the point) is not what people want to hear – doesn’t inspire confidence imo.

      • weka 2.2.1

        Would you have been ok if the GP stand someone in Te Tai Tokerau next election and by doing so keep Mana out of parliament despite the fact that the GP can’t win the seat?

        • marty mars

          why can’t they win the seat?

          • weka

            Not enough GP voters, plus the split vote issue.

            • marty mars


              If the GP put up a candidate to try and get party and electorate votes then whatever they get is good. I would imagine that with limited resources and energy any Party has to make decisions on where those resources and energy go. Could the GP win the vote – yes. For example the environment and associated issues – mining, exploitation plus poverty, inequality and so on are all big, important issues up north as elsewhere. If the macro environment changed – say the arctic stopped freezing or a drought lasted much much longer then the GP could be seen as a Party to give votes to. And it doesn’t have to big a massive big issue that ‘tips’ peoples perceptions over any ‘local’ issue could do it. The GP could win up north. And if they did and that kept Mana out, well that is the way it is.

              The same applies to labour and the ‘can’t win’ bullshit – there are multiple tipping points that could change everything in an instant IF the eyes are open for the opportunities. If the eyes aren’t open it doesn’t matter what happens you’ll never see it. This isn’t magic wishing or believing it makes it so – it is practical reality, it is the way it works imo.

              The other part is perceptions. We can’t win, we can’t win – oh we want to be government won’t work imo.

              • weka

                It’s most likely true that the GP still has to make decisions about budget and standing in the electorates. They like standing candidates because it increases the list vote. But there is no big enough environmental crisis to get more votes (well actually there is, but it’s not getting the votes), so in reality, it’s not possible for the GP to win the TTT seat next election. Standing there would give them more list votes, but I suspect that even those wanting to vote GP would vote GP on the list and someone else on the electorate vote.

                If the GP did stand someone and it meant that Mana didn’t get the seat and that meant that NACT got a 4th term, that for me is far far more important than me getting personal satisfaction from my personal vote.

                For me, having a left wing govt IS where my values lie. I am a pragmatic voter, but I don’t know what I would do in the Northland situation given that I think Peters is a loose unit as far as the left is concerned.

                • ” it’s not possible for the GP to win the TTT seat next election.”

                  not true

                  No one has any idea of how their vote will affect or influence things when parties coalesce to form government – all we have is our integrity regarding our personal beliefs and our personal vote.

                  Your dilemna in northland is the same one many people have with labour, and the Greens and probably Mana for some too.

                  • Bill

                    I honestly can’t see the problem here. There is the possibility of a positive vote and the possibility of a negative vote. In the case of Northland, a supporter of Labour could vote positively – for Labour. Or they could vote against the Nats.

                    I believe it’s been said, but getting the longer term message out is valuable even if the seat is unlikely to be won. So any party could/should do that and voters can decide whether to cast a positive vote or a negative vote.

                    edit – and as the landscape changes, negative voting may well give way to positive voting 😉

                    • weka

                      Except that for some people voting for Peters is a negative negative vote (not a positive negative vote), and it might backfire and lead to disaster 😉

                    • sure Bill – my point has been simply that – with a low vote last election, multiple leaders, and now a new good leader that labour could drive home that leader and his messages in this by-election with a long term view of gaining the treasury benches next general election. I don’t see the current strategy being employed as aligned with that view and by repeating the ‘can’t win up there’ meme that also detaches from the message that labour and little can govern. i just don’t see any potential bloody nose to the gnats by losing to winnie as being worth not driving home the little is great, labour better- to ensure as much as possible a labour victory next general election.

                      I get that others don’t agree – we’ll see what happens…

                  • weka

                    it is true the way things stand now. I get what you are saying, that the potential is there. But it’s not a potential that has much potential if you take my meaning. Forming coalitions comes after voting not before, and party choices about candidates even earlier. If the GP made an active decision to not stand in TTT because of the split vote issue then they have my gratitude and support.

                    I think we have more than our integrity and personal beliefs and personal votes, that’s what political movements are all about, going beyond the personal and working collectively and co-operatively.

                    “Your dilemna in northland is the same one many people have with labour, and the Greens and probably Mana for some too.”

                    hmm, not sure about that. The Northland situation strikes me as being reasonabl unique.

      • b waghorn 2.2.2

        I started out very anti labour doing anything other than go for the win .I hope it doesn’t make me to much of a sheep to be coming round to liking the idea of Winston winning while labour still get out and push there message.
        Of course if national wins or peters deals with key it will be a bad day .

        • GregJ

          No – it just means you are open minded enough to listen to the various arguments and reasoned your way to a different conclusion from your original one. As long as you can follow the logic of your change of opinion there is nothing wrong with doing so. Holding intransigently firm to a particular view can sometimes be as bad as constantly flip-flopping. 😈

  3. les 3

    NZ ‘s reputation as an ‘honest broker’ around the world must be on the way out.

    • Chooky 3.1

      yup…unfortunately…John Key has made us a lap dog….and where is Little Labour on this?…or have they lost their voice and independence?

    • Colonial Rawshark 3.2

      Already in the skip.

      Wonder how those Pacific nations now feel about voting us on to the Security Council.

  4. adam 4

    Is it just me – Or does the Auckland city 10 year plan look like more austerity for Auckland?

    Here is the links page – it’s a link to a few of councils .PDFs about the plan.


    Must say agreeing with Penny Bright’s argument that this is a council who are light on finical detail, rings very true with collection of propaganda puff pieces.

    So back to my main argument – Have and are we in the grip of austerity via the local bodies in this country – rather than at a National level?

    And if this is the case, is it to make a government look better finical managers – than they really are?

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      “So back to my main argument – Have and are we in the grip of austerity via the local bodies in this country – rather than at a National level?”

      All councils are effectively insolvent. We’re just waiting for the other shoe to drop, now.

  5. Sad to hear that Mike Jackson, former head of the National Distribution Union has died. Mike retired a few years ago, after losing the leadership of the union to someone who sadly didn’t have his loyalty or commitment, and was living in Australia in recent years.

    He worked alongside Bill Andersen to build the NDU (now First Union) into an integrated national organisation, representing workers in all parts of the retail supply chain. A lovely bloke and a staunch comrade.

    • Tracey 5.1


      Joined the Union at my new job yesterday (well confirmed my joining).

    • Skinny 5.2

      +1 RIP Mike. Plenty of good unionists come out of NDU.

    • adam 5.3

      Why the dig at Harre te reo putake? What a sad comment from you, using someone’s passing to push your own agenda – what a sorry approach to politics.

      You would rather engage in factional b.s., and negativity – rather than celebrate a person’s life and achievements. People like you

      • Gee, and there was I thinking I was being diplomatic!

        Laila’s coup had a significant effect on both the union generally and Mike personally. It can certainly be argued that she took the union forward in her brief stay, but Mike paid a big price for that. My distaste at how she rolled him hasn’t stopped me working with her productively since then and she remains someone I rate highly, even if her most recent project flopped badly. However, my generally positive opinion of her is not shared by all of Mike’s friends, many of whom use far more colourful language than I do to describe her role in ending Mike’s leadership of the union.

        • adam

          So why not just talk about the good Mike did – because he did a lot of good?

          Celebrate his life.

          Celebrate his achievements – which there were many.

          Look to his positive impact on lives – which there were many.

          Smile, laugh and think well of the good times with Mike – which there were many.

          Bugger the negative crap – don’t we get enough of that from the fools who worship money?

  6. Rosie 6

    So JK, true to form went back on his word “I will resign if there is mass surveillance on NZer’s”. (paraphrased) Finds there’s mass surveillance is occurring. Doesn’t resign. Says it’s data collection.

    Tells the public that whatever Nicky Hagar has to say don’t believe it, before any ones even knows the content, and then goes on to instruct the public not to read it. Actually tells public what they shouldn’t read.

    Tries to get political mileage out of the 1080 blackmail threat by referring to it as “eco terrorism”. Terrorism. Righto. Good thing we have the GCSB and SIS to prevent these things happening eh? Thats working out really well. Most likely green voters that stuck that 1080 in the baby formula and sent it to Theo Spierings eh John? In the meantime, Police refer to it as a blackmail threat.

    (Let’s not forget JK is sending troops to Iraq at the USA’s bidding, and out of our 5 eyes partners, we are spending the most per capita on our military involvement. Not in my name Key)

    The guy’s out of control. He is out of his depth as his deeds and lies catch up with him. He looks harried and he’s being snappy with reporters.

    So back to that resignation promise. Are we going to hold him to that, as NZer’s? Are we going to let him forget it? Are we going to demand he resign?

    When’s a good time to demand his resignation? After the Northland by election results come in?

    What do you think?

    Outside Parliament on a day they’re sitting. Thousands chanting “hey hey! ho ho! JK must go!”

    Time to knock planet key off it’s axis I think.

    • Tracey 6.1

      IF NZF win Northland (big IF), maybe MP and Dunne will put their values where their mouths are and cross the floor Budget time forcing a stalemate in govt… and possibly a new election. Would take guts though…

      • Skinny 6.1.1

        It is a big if now National have dumped 1080 (poison) down on Peters campaign. No
        better way to bring farmers back into line than threatening their income.

      • alwyn 6.1.2

        That would be very unlikely Tracey.
        Both parties gave guarantees of their votes on matters of confidence and supply for the duration of this term and that is what a Budget vote is.
        I don’t think either of them would go back on that.

        • Tracey

          you are probably right. only john keys word is really in doubt.

        • Draco T Bastard

          It’s possible that they could be democratically persuaded.

          • alwyn

            Is that the diplomatic words for bribed?
            Or is it like the scene in The Godfather? “I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse”

            • Draco T Bastard

              Part of Representative Democracy is pushing the representatives to actually do what the community wants and not just what they want.

      • Rosie 6.1.3

        Quite a bit hinges on that IF………….

        In the scenario you put forward Tracey it may be possible for the MP to be guided by their core values and act accordingly(I know, I know, some of you may choke on that idea) but I would never see Dunne doing that, crossing the floor, unless there was something in it for him. He’s always banging on about values but doesn’t ever display any.

        I’m also thinking about ways NZer’s can destabilise National’s credibility as they pull out the brand Key puppet for campaigning in Northland. A mass public call for Key’s resignation right now, while the events are fresh in people’s mind (we tend to have memories like fish sometimes in NZ) might have some impact.

        Such events take time to organise though. National events have to be well coordinated and well planned, such as the anti TPP rallies last weekend. One of the organisers told me it took 6 weeks to plan.

        Maybe just a rally in Northland to start with, in the areas that Key will be visiting?

        Either way, I don’t think we can sit back much longer and just watch the horror show that is the Key Govt, trundle along, business as usual.

      • greywarshark 6.1.4

        Guts – the entrail trail. This would be politics in a very visceral form. Don’t know if the two mentioned entities are full-blooded enough.

      • The Lone Haranguer 6.1.5

        Wont happen Tracey.

        They got the Ministerial Limos, and the big salaries, so they arent going to vote for the bus ticket option to Welly Airport.

      • felix 6.1.6

        “Would take guts though…”

        Well that rules them both out then innit.

    • weka 6.2

      If I was any where near Wellington I’d join you outside parliament Rosie. Symbolic Kauri sitting, only this time it’s saving the country.

      • Rosie 6.2.1

        Excellent weka! Thats two of us. We need a minimum of 998 more. Organisers of the TPP rally in the weekend counted approximately 1200 in their images they took of the day. We made a helluva racket.

        Like your analogy 🙂

        When Key was interviewed about the fate of the Titirangi tree’s last night on 3 news he couldn’t be more disinterested if he tried and mumbled something about it “being old” but that wasn’t in context with anything else he said.

      • Lanthanide 6.2.2

        I don’t think that Key is such a monster that forcing him to resign would be “saving the country”. National would still be in power, after all.

        It’s far more likely he’d be toppled by an internal coup, like Bolger was and Abott is about to be.

        Imagine what would be happening now if Abott had said “I’ll resign if XYZ happens”, and then it happened and he didn’t resign? He’d be pushed.

        No one in the Nats caucus is going to roll Key because he hasn’t done anything to warrant it in the public’s opinion, and the caucus know that.

        • Rosie

          Key is the phoney glue that holds together the image of the National Party. With him gone, they will be left exposed, naked, without their make up

          Voters who party vote National, who are not National Party members, just ordinary non politically engaged people, are voting for Brand Key, not for some belief in National Party values, and as was the case last year, they certainly weren’t voting for any policy because there wasn’t any.

          Sure, we would still be left with a National Government, but when someone like, lets say, Steven Joyce stepped up as PM in the unlikely event Key did resign, those voters will be able see that they only voted for a man and will have no loyalty to the Party, or no connection with it. They may even begin to wake up to the fact they were duped by a cheesey grin and fake blokiness.

          Disillusioned they may be inclined to vote differently in 2017.

          Having Key gone may weaken National’s hopes for 2017.

          I agree that no one in the Nat caucus would roll Key, but for more reasons than you suggest. Key is their meal ticket. they won’t want him gone.

          In 2013 when Key said he would resign if he discovered that the GCSB had been undertaking mass surveillance on NZer’s I thought he was being fairly cocky. It was a risky thing to do but he would have known there would be a way to weasel his way out of it, otherwise he wouldn’t have said it.

          So, as a matter of principle he must resign. Even if we are left with the same government, we are left with a government weakened without it’s previously popular leader, and a disillusioned voter group whose eyes will be looking elsewhere

          And it’s onwards and upwards to 2017

        • Murray Rawshark

          No one in the Nats caucus is going to roll Key because although he has done heaps to warrant it, the caucus know what he’s done but the public don’t.


    • Chooky 6.3

      +100 Rosie

      • greywarshark 6.3.1

        Yes Rosie I think that yek has managed to puff charisma from a smoke gun and create a brain fog for the more vulnerable voter and believer-in-money-as-a-measure-of-worth who think of themselves as realists. If you’ve got it, you must have smart qualities and be able to foot it in the business world, have good contacts, have the nous ‘we’ want.

        • Rosie

          Ain’t that the truth Warbs 🙂

          Can you please tell me where the “yek” term came from? I’ve seen you use in reference to John Key.

          Just to dig my heels in further. I think it’s high time that someone of standing and mana (other than Dotcom) call for Key’s resignation.

          It’s something that the Labour Party, Greens and NZ First could make a united front on too. The leaders of the opposing parties could make a solemn press statement calling for Key’s resignation.

  7. Pasupial 7

    Tuesday night must just be starting over in Ireland as I type this. I imagine there’s going to be quite a few dance parties for a weekday!

    A written judgment released by the Republic’s court of appeal said part of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1977, which allows certain substances to be controlled, is unconstitutional, meaning all government orders banning substances such as ecstasy and magic mushrooms are void – and it is not an offence to possess them… The Irish government now has to force through emergency legislation in its parliament on Tuesday evening in response to the ruling.

    The emergency law won’t come into place until the Republic’s second chamber, the Seanad, endorses the legislation. Following that the country’s president, Michael D Higgins, will have to gave his approval.


    • Tracey 7.1

      A few folks arrested in recent weeks wil lbe thrilled (provided their case hasnt finalised)

  8. ianmac 8

    Quote from the release. “By GCSB staff helping to translate and analyse communications intercepted by other Five Eyes agencies.”
    So we have the staff and they have the skills to do the above. This seems to me to be of great importance to the debate.
    Lucky no NZer is subject to their work though if something cropped up in mass “collection”, would there be just cause for the agents to go back and seek and discover information?

    • Tracey 8.1

      translate and analyse… is that part of data collection or mass surveillance.

      i note fed farmers just confirmed the 1080 announcement was definitely scheduled for next week.

  9. The Fairy Godmother 9

    A while ago I wrote a guest post about the difficulties my daughter was having finding a job. Just to let you know she has one part time but permanent and in the area she wants a career. Its a start. She did it herself without the help of family contacts. Still think the job market is really hard for young people but relieved my daughter made it

  10. The truth can be difficult to accept.

    Good article from John Minto

    This week in the face of incontrovertible evidence that the GCSB conducts mass surveillance of our Pacific neighbours and sends the unprocessed data direct to the US National Security Agency the Prime Minister cracked. He offered no counter argument or evidence but simply delivered strident attacks on the messengers – Nicky Hagar in particular – who were exposing his various fabrications.

    In the normal course of politics a Prime Minister wouldn’t get away with any of this but he has two important factors on his side.

    Firstly the mainstream media have poo-poohed the latest revelations. They say it tells us nothing we didn’t already know and are ready to move on. So aside from widely reporting the Prime Minister’s incredulous bluff and bluster there has yet been little deeper analysis.

    Secondly and just as important to Key’s position is that Labour has essentially the same policy and Labour leader Andrew Little’s comments have simply added to the smokescreen John Key is doing his best to create around this issue.


    • Chooky 10.1

      +100 …where is Labour on this issue?…nowhere to be seen!….the Greens and Mana would have done better and David Cunliffe

      • The Lone Haranguer 10.1.1

        Despite what I read here, I dont think the “ordinary not very political but we still vote” folk really care about this issue very much.

        It didnt make a decent dent in the Nats popularity in the 2014 election, perhaps almost none at all if you measure it by their increased party vote that the Nats got.

        The Nats will lose the next election as they will be at the end of their popularity cycle, just as Helen Clark was in 2008.

        Labour just needs to work on some polices that resonate with the voters, and the other parties need to work on policies that will energise the “missing million” to come on out and vote, because its unlikely that Labours policies alone will achieve that.

        • tracey

          Most don’t care about a single Kauri, but enough did and apparently a decision has changed.

          Critivcal mass and all that, of and realising you have to live next door to the people your affected by your decision


        • millsy

          The mission million are lost to Labour for good, as well as National for that matter (as well as the Greens). It will be a new movement that they will flock to, to be led by a charismatic leader waiting in the wings. What movement or who that leader is, no one knows, but there is a vacuum, and someone will fill it. Then those who sit in their million dollar houses, and their latte dens will have good reason to tremble.

          And it wont be me. I have more important things to worry about 🙂

  11. Ad 11

    Over 21,000 have signed the petition against felling Titirangi’s Kauri and Rimu tree. The number is climbing by hundreds every hour.

    This will now be an item at Auckland Council’s City Development Committee tomorrow.

  12. weka 12

    Wikipedia is suing the NSA over surveillance programs that involve tapping internet traffic en masse from communications infrastructure in the U.S. in order to search it for intelligence purposes.

    The lawsuit argues that this broad surveillance, revealed in documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, violates the First Amendment by chilling speech and the open exchange of information, and that it also runs up against Fourth Amendment privacy protections.

    “The surveillance that we’re challenging gives the government virtually unfettered access to U.S. communications and the content of those communications,” said Patrick Toomey, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union, which is bringing the litigation on behalf of the Wikimedia Foundation, which operates Wikipedia, and a group of human rights and media organizations including The Nation magazine and Amnesty International, who say that their sensitive overseas communications are imperiled by the NSA’s snooping.


  13. Philip Ferguson 13

    It might be a bit early, as Anzac Day is six weeks away, but here’s an interesting piece Dean Parker wrote about the need to remember those who resisted WW1: https://rdln.wordpress.com/2013/08/14/anzac-day-time-to-remember-those-who-tried-to-resist-war/

    A review of Field Punishment #1: https://rdln.wordpress.com/2014/04/24/field-punishment-no-1-reviewed-reminder-that-the-wars-not-over/

    And here’s a piece on the Gallipoli invasion and what was really going on:

    An article on Stevan Eldred Grigg’s book ‘The Great Wrong War’: https://rdln.wordpress.com/2013/08/02/stevan-eldred-griggs-the-great-wrong-war-nz-society-and-ww1/

    • Bill 13.1

      Not exactly anti-war, but there’s an interesting ‘on demand’ series from Maori TV on World War 1 that a Philip Ure comment alerted me to. It’s based on the work of war historian(?) Hew Strachan. The link.. http://www.maoritelevision.com/tv/shows/first-world-war/S01E001/first-world-war-series-1-episode-1

      • greywarshark 13.1.1

        This desire to make an event about NZ people being killed in a nasty way in WW1 a long time ago by-passes other who also should be remembered and celebrated for their actions. And it continues that pathetic drone every Anzac Day about the wonderful fallen and we will remember them spoken in a solemn and repetitive way. Nothing said about really preventing war, how horrible it is and how you are lucky to have life, a working body and mind, sanity and your soul at the finish, just acceptance that they are dead. Another pocketful of mumbles.

        The RSA tried to keep the Vietnam fighters away from joining in Anac Day marches.
        Not a real war apparently. My father didn’t come back from WW2. There was anxiety that the children who wished to march in their dead parent’s place shouldn’t be confused with the survivors. Medals must be worn on the opposite chest or great offence would be taken by the forces men.

        It is a waste of money. We already have memorials why build more. If we have so much dosh to throw around, gather all the Turks in NZ and the people being fought now, the Palestinians etc and have a ceremony of community, warmth, conciliation and compassion, remembrance for all who have suffered that we have been connected with. And avow that we want to prevent war if we can do so in a way that is fair to all.

        • alwyn

          There actually is a service at the Ataturk memorial in Wellington on Anzac day.
          See Ataturk park.
          I can’t tell you exactly what form it takes as I have never been to it but someone else reading this may know.

          • greywarshark

            My point was actually on how the government can choose to spend money on one particular war and not others, and have picked one that is mighty distant in the past. Why not the Boer War. We were just getting on our feet here then and off to war we went.
            Eager to display New Zealand’s commitment to the British Empire, Premier Richard Seddon offered to send troops two weeks before conflict broke out. Hundreds of men applied to serve, and by the time war began in October 1899, the First Contingent was already preparing to depart for South Africa. Within a few months they would be fighting the Boers.

            By the time peace was concluded 2½ years later, 10 contingents of volunteers totalling over 6500 men (plus 8000 horses) had sailed for Africa, along with doctors, nurses, veterinary surgeons and a small number of schoolteachers. Seventy-one New Zealanders were killed in action or died of wounds, with another 159 dying in accidents or as result of disease.

            NZ Population – At the 1896 census the non-Maori population was just over 703,000. The Maori population was under 40,000. The transformation of New Zealand from a Maori …

            • millsy

              It is probably worth noting that Maori were not allowed to fight in the Boer War because British policy forbade non-white troops from fighting against white troops.

              Also, while on that subject, the Maori Battallion was kept out of the Pacific theatre in WW2, because the US didnt want to fight with them.

              • greywarshark

                @ millsy
                Fascinating the protocols of war. The Maori battalions were asked for in some theatres because they were so good. Or so I understand.

            • greywarshark

              An RSA timeline of war that goes up to Vietnam war in 1965. Where we might choose to remember a Good Thing that happened is 4 November 1918 at Le Quesnoy where we showed a concern and intelligent lack of maximum firepower in not shelling the town but climbing over the walls and surprising and capturing the resident Germans, for which apparently we are still remembered.

              Wars every 30 years or so. That was the general pattern in the 20th century.
              There was Vietnam and then the Cold War, also the threat of annihilation by nuclear bomb. (Raymond Briggs showed us how the trusting and vulnerable would manage in that circumstance.)

              On more mundane homegrown conflict we had the Army fighting the farming couple over who was responsible for the bridge collapse, just to keep their hand in while not overseas. That went on for years as they tried to ruin locals in this domestic spat.

              Then Afghanistan, Iraq, etc. So plenty of action to think about.

            • alwyn

              I see.
              I didn’t read it in quite as general a manner as you meant.

              Regarding Seddon and the Boer War, we didn’t learn very quickly did we?
              Look at Savage in 1939 and his statement.
              ” Both with gratitude for the past and confidence in the future, we range ourselves without fear beside Britain. Where she goes, we go. Where she stands, we stand.”

              Technically we then declared war on Germany before anyone else. Imagine if, at the last moment, Britain and France hadn’t declared war? We could have fought Germany on our own.

  14. Philip Ferguson 14

    Actually, on the subject of militarism here’s an interesting article by Murray Horton on Labour’s introduction of peacetime conscription in 1949 and the fight against it by the left (led by people like Jock Barnes), pacifists etc:

    And here’s another one by Murray on the first Labour government during WW2: https://rdln.wordpress.com/2011/07/20/the-secret-history-of-ww2/


  15. I think we could add some homegrown ones into this, sadly.

    “This post is a collection of racially-themed parties and events at college and high school campuses. They’re examples of one kind of simple individual racism that still perpetuates daily life in the U.S.”


  16. Bill 16

    “The first revolution, the agricultural revolution, was instituted by women,” he says, “and the first counter-revolution and the first negative hierarchies were created by men.” In one pamphlet the PKK’s leader, Abdullah Ocalan – now languishing in Turkish jail – writes: “Liberating life is impossible without a radical women’s revolution which would change mentality and life.” He coins the concept of “total divorce”, or “the ability to divorce from the five thousand years old culture of male domination”.


    And yes, I still harbour severe mis-givings over the involvement of Leninist organisations in the revolution unfolding in Northern Syria as their influence will be one pushing for a form of democratic centralism (ie, an authoritarian polity).

  17. Ovid 17

    This is an informative and entertaining video about the spread of ideas which the presenter calls “thought-germs” (memes might be more accurate), the role of emotion (especially anger) in the spread and retention of these ideas online and the development of communities that have a shared idea.

    When opposing groups get big, they don’t really argue with each other, they mostly argue with themselves about how angry the other group makes them. We can actually graph fights on the Internet to see this in action. Each becomes its own quasi isolated internet, sharing thoughts about the other.

    Each group becomes a breeding ground for thought-germs about the other – and as before the most enraging, but not necessarily the most accurate, spread fastest. A group almost can’t help but construct a totem of the other so enraging they talk about it all the time

    Food for thought – especially when it comes to political blogs across the spectrum in NZ (and maybe a little introspection about our community : is this evident here? If so, is it something that we should work to overcome?).

    CGP Grey : this video will make you angry

  18. Molly 18

    Interesting comment on a post by Frank Mackasy on TDB: Someone at Fairfax is a subversive.

    Jeremy points out: “The links are based on the first ID, not the slug following the last slash.

    That’s opened up a whole new set of possibilities for me when posting links on my Herald comments.

  19. freedom 19

    Here is a quote from today’s NZ Herald
    “The government posted a surplus of $3.37 billion a year earlier, when its investment portfolios were riding gains in global financial markets.”

    Note it does not actually say when this happened, and if you read the article a few times you are left with a vague 2012-2014 timeframe. Not what one would call specific. One is also left with a few niggling thoughts, here are three.

    1: If the Government had recently posted a $3.37 billion surplus, surely they would have mentioned that achievement once or twice during the election, instead of the
    we will hit surplus any day now ‘ message that was being trumpeted from the ramparts.

    2: If the Government had recently hit surplus, then they must have gone backwards in one hell of a hurry to have spent all of last year talking up such a small projected surplus that might or might not be seen sometime next year if you squint facing south when the moon hits azimuth and are wearing your lucky undies.

    3: The fact no such surplus shows up in the budget charts is, I guess, just one of those opinion thingys that the PM keeps talking about .

    There is also a fun new game in the NZ Herald, where you guess what word they meant to use:
    “The liability for Accident Compensation Corp was $34.92 billion, some $4.5 billion more than expected, while Earthquake Commission property damage liability was $370 million [?] than forecast at $3.66 billion.”

    • Incognito 19.1

      So, instead of the forecast deficit of $635 million we now have a surplus of $77 million, which is the improvement of $712 million that is heralded everywhere in the media. However, the tax-take was $456 million better than forecast and outgoings were $249 million below forecast. Together, this adds up to $705 million. That leaves $7 million unexplained. Has anybody got a clue? A ‘rounding error’ perhaps?

      • Clemgeopin 19.1.1

        Only the Dipton Double Dipper can answer that in his long monotonous and bullshitting boring way.

        • freedom

          I am still scratching my head at how The Herald posts an article saying the government posted a 3.37 billion dollar surplus recently and no-one blinks an eye

  20. Penny Bright 20

    In my view, the gaffe video of ‘okey-blokey’ John Key, which has apparently been VIRALING – out of ‘spin doctor’ control, showing the TRADER trying to be a TRADIE, but failing hideously in his attempt to bang a single nail into a piece of wood, as part of National’s (doomed) Northland by-election campaign, will trump the famous Don Brash ‘walking the plank’ gaffe.

    The reaction I’m getting to this on Kiwiblog tends to suggest that I may be right?

    Doesn’t quite fit the Kiwi DIY concept?

    POOR Crosby Textor 😉

    At the end of the day – I can’t see them feeling either relaxed or comfortable about the amount of public ridicule to which their client is now being subjected?

    Just undid YEARS of their Crosby Textor masterfully crafted ‘spin doctoring’?

    Ordinary Kiwi blokes are now going to queue up to shake the hand of this (part-time) Prime Minister John Key, whom has obviously never held a hammer?

    Didn’t Crosby Textor not first do a ‘dummy run’ to check that this ex-Wall Street banker could actually bang a nail into a piece of wood?

    Obviously NOT.

    bugger …..

    Penny Bright

    • Murray Rawshark 20.1

      Winnie has put up a video of himself hammering in a nail. Cunliffe should do the same. Metiria as well.

  21. On Spying, Fonterra’s 1080 Scare And How Information Can Be Used To Manipulate Perception

  22. Worthwhile contemplating the fact that yesterday or the day before was the anniversary of Operation Meetinghouse (which I just heard on the Radio) – “later estimated to be the single most destructive bombing raid in history”

    On the night of 9–10 March (“Operation Meetinghouse”),[9] 334 B-29s took off to raid with 279 of them dropping 1,665 tons of bombs on Tokyo. The bombs were mostly the 500-pound (230 kg) E-46 cluster bomb which released 38 napalm-carrying M-69 incendiary bomblets at an altitude of 2,000–2,500 ft (610–760 m). The M-69s punched through thin roofing material or landed on the ground; in either case they ignited 3–5 seconds later, throwing out a jet of flaming napalm globs. A lesser number of M-47 incendiaries was also dropped: the M-47 was a 100-pound (45 kg) jelled-gasoline and white phosphorus bomb which ignited upon impact…

    … The individual fires caused by the bombs joined to create a general conflagration, which would have been classified as a firestorm but for prevailing winds gusting at 17 to 28 mph (27 to 45 km/h).[12] Approximately 15.8 square miles (4,090 ha) of the city was destroyed and some 100,000 people are estimated to have died.[13][14]

    …The US Strategic Bombing Survey later estimated that nearly 88,000 people died in this one raid, 41,000 were injured, and over a million residents lost their homes. The Tokyo Fire Department estimated a higher toll: 97,000 killed and 125,000 wounded. The Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department established a figure of 124,711 casualties including both killed and wounded and 286,358 buildings and homes destroyed. Richard Rhodes, historian, put deaths at over 100,000, injuries at a million and homeless residents at a million.[17]


    LeMay was aware of the implication of his orders. The New York Times reported at the time, “Maj. Gen. Curtis E. LeMay, commander of the B-29s of the entire Marianas area, declared that if the war is shortened by a single day, the attack will have served its purpose.”[9][10] The argument was that it was his duty to carry out the attacks in order to end the war as quickly as possible, sparing further loss of life.

    He also remarked that had the U.S. lost the war, he fully expected to be tried for war crimes.[19]


    lest we forget…

  23. Barbara 23

    I have just been listening to Question Time in the house today and I wish to let the Standard know that, in my opinion the PM is a nasty little man with a complete lack of respect for our Parliament. He has the manners of a guttersnipe and Lord knows what that says of his upbringing. What a cheap and chatty little man he is. It brings to mind what my dear late mother would say to us when we got out of line “I did not raise you kids to behave like this …”. God save us from him.

  24. greywarshark 24

    Henry Rollins on living in the USA – It’s not living in a country, it’s a video game.
    7+ minutes on how he managed to get out of minimum wage precariat level.

    Henry Rollins – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Rollins
    He says he has been lucky. But when luck presented him with an opportunity he gave it a go. He would be early for any appointment to make sure he was there on time if something unexpected happened on the way. He learned his lines, he stuck at things and made sure he finished them. Gives you satisfaction even if you don’t succeed as hoped. I can learn from that. I think it could speak to a lot of us here, we have had it fairly easy up til now.

    Slavoj Zizek has similar ideas on his capitalism and democracy –
    what now? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXVEnxtZe_w

  25. mary_a 25

    Anyone else see Key’s performance in Parliament today?

    The man is a rabid nut job judging by his behaviour in the House today!

    • Paul 25.1

      Which question?

      • mary_a 25.1.1

        All of them. Key kept going off on a mad tangent, failing to address any question adequately. Several times, regardless of the question asked, he threw in a few electioneering comments, promoting Northland Natsy patsy Osborne!

        At one stage he started arguing his position at a recent press conference, whether he was at the time making statements as PM or Leader of National. This was at the PM’s press conference for goodness sake!

        And more often than not, the Speaker turned a blind eye, preferring to reprimand the Opposition instead!

    • b waghorn 25.2

      Do tell , is he loseing it ?
      All those chickens coming home to roost starting to shit down his back and leave a nasty smell.?

      • Clemgeopin 25.2.1

        No, he was all buoyed up, arrogant and cocky today, and digressing widely off the questions asked with the speaker as usual treating him with his usual shameless partiality!

  26. Clemgeopin 26

    Winston did not get much media attention today. Did anyone else notice that? I wonder why!!

  27. dv 27

    What this whole episode has shown is all that needed to do is write couple of letter to fonterra and Fed Farmers and then wait for the fallout and the destruction of NZ financial base.

    ALL for $2.

    That is real bang for the buck.

  28. Clemgeopin 28

    Campbell live at 7 is gong to talk about the Key bribed but Winston inspired Winston’s ten Northland bridges. Programme starts in 2 minutes. I am off to watch it now,

  29. Jono 29

    Is this 1080 threat has been investigated for four month, how come police only started taking to the anti 1080 campaigners in the last couple of days, as reported this evening on Stuff and the Herald?

    • McFlock 29.1

      Because if you officially ask someone questions you’re telling them that you know that the threat exists, your are actively investigating it, and that you believe that they might have something to do with it or be connected to someone who does.

      As opposed to all the sneaky stuff you can do if someone doesn’t know you’re looking for them.

      Now that they have to investigate openly, they might even just be rattling the bars to provoke a reaction from the letter-writer.

      • weka 29.1.1

        That and they probably don’t think the anti-1080 campaigners have anything to do with it. They’re not suspects as far as I can tell.

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    2 days ago
  • Celebrating 20 years of the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park
    Government Ministers today celebrated 20 years of the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park/ Ko te Pataka kai o Tikapa Moana/ Te Moananui a Toi, and recognise there is much to celebrate and so much more to do to give nature a helping hand.   Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage said “New Zealanders care deeply about nature.I want to ...
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    2 days ago
  • NZ economy in strong position to respond to coronavirus
    Prepared remarks on coronavirus by Finance Minister Grant Robertson to the Auckland Chamber of Commerce and Massey University. Good morning ladies and gentlemen, The topic of this speech is the Budget 2020 priorities. But, given the considerable interest that I imagine is in the room about COVID-19 coronavirus, I do ...
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    2 days ago
  • Speech at opening of Nadi Women’s Crisis Centre
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira ma. Tena koutou, tena koutou, tena koutou katoa. Ni sa bula vinaka. Namaste Thank you Shamima, Hon. Minister Vuniwaqa, community leaders and Women’s Crisis Centre staff for your warm welcome. It’s an honour and privilege to officially ...
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    2 days ago
  • Govt acts on fuel market competition
    The Government has released a comprehensive response to ensuring New Zealanders get a fairer deal at the petrol pump. This follows the Commerce Commission fuel market study which found motorists were paying more than they should for petrol and includes: Fuel Market Bill drafting, to pass mid-year Industry consultation in ...
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    2 days ago
  • Speech at Lautoka Mosque
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira ma Tēnā koutou katoa Ni sa bula vinaka As-salaam alaikum It is a privilege to be here today. Thank you for welcoming us to your house of prayer. Thank you for your warmth. Thank you for greeting ...
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    2 days ago
  • Taupō Airport upgrade takes off
    Taupō Airport is to be upgraded and expanded through a $5.9 million Government funding boost, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. “Taupō Airport is the gateway to the Central North Island. It is essential for both keeping local people and businesses connected, but also to bring more people ...
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    2 days ago
  • Place-based assessment confirmed for Rotorua
    The Minister of Housing Megan Woods has confirmed the Government is working with Rotorua Lakes District Council and Te Arawa for the second place-based assessment to better understand the housing and urban issues affecting the city. “Every New Zealander has a right to a warm, safe and secure place to ...
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    2 days ago
  • More houses opened for New Zealanders
    19 new community homes (in addition to 14 opened in December) delivered in Takanini, Auckland 500 people housed by CORT Housing Trust by end of March 2,290 new public housing homes delivered in Auckland (November 2017 – December 2019). Another nineteen new public housing homes are being delivered in Auckland, ...
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    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and India to strengthen ties
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Trade and Export Growth David Parker met today with Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar to discuss ways to strengthen ties between New Zealand and India.   “India is a priority relationship for New Zealand. We share common democratic traditions, growing two-way trade, extensive people-to-people links, ...
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    2 days ago
  • The Indo-Pacific: from principles to partnerships
    Speech to the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) Delhi, India Wednesday 26 February 2020 [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY] The Indo-Pacific: from principles to partnerships Distinguished guests, good afternoon and thank you for your invitation.  It is good to be here at a time where New Zealand needs less of an introduction than ...
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    3 days ago
  • Speech to University of the South Pacific students
    Tihei mauri ora Te Whare e tu nei Te Papa e takoto Tēnā korua  No reira tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa Ni sa bula Vinaka It is a real pleasure to be here today, and to have the honour of addressing you all. If you’ll indulge me I’m ...
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    3 days ago
  • Coromandel Conservation gets a boost
    Conservation efforts in Coromandel and Hauraki are getting a much needed helping hand thanks to DOC’s Community Conservation Fund, announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage in the Kauaeranga Valley today.   “Our natural environment is important to New Zealanders, and everyone has a role to play in protecting it. We need ...
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    3 days ago
  • Proposed new measures to improve Aotearoa’s air quality
      Improved air quality to support better health and environmental wellbeing is the focus of proposed amendments to air quality regulations, says the Associate Minister for the Environment, Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  “Although our air quality is good in most places, during winter certain places have spikes in air pollution, mainly from ...
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    3 days ago
  • Water investment in Raukokore
    The remote eastern Bay of Plenty community of Raukokere will receive a Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) investment of $10.6 million for a water storage facility, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “This is great news for the rural community. The landowner, Te Whānau a Maruhaeremuri Hapū Trust, will use ...
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    3 days ago
  • Lake Ōkaro lakebed transferred to Te Arawa as final piece of Settlement Act
    The Lake Ōkaro lakebed has transferred to Te Arawa Lakes Trust, Minister for Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis joined Te Arawa at Te Papaiōuru Marae in Rotorua to celebrate the reinstatement of Te Arawa Lakes Trust as a key decision maker over the bed ...
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    3 days ago
  • Better protection against late payments
    New legislation is being proposed which aims to reduce the stress and financial hardship caused by late payments to small businesses. The Minister for Small Business Stuart Nash is considering stricter rules around payment practices between businesses. “Late payments from large organisations to smaller suppliers can be crippling for these ...
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    3 days ago
  • Police partnership programme with Fiji launched
    A new partnership programme between the New Zealand Police and Fiji Police will focus on combatting transnational organised crime and enhancing investigative skills, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on the first day of her visit to Fiji. The programme will see: ·       New Zealand Institute of Environmental Science and Research ...
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    4 days ago
  • Joint statement from Prime Minister Ardern and Prime Minister Bainimarama
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Prime Minister Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama met today in Suva, and renewed their commitment to continue to strengthen Fiji-New Zealand relations on a foundation of shared values and equal partnership. The Prime Ministers acknowledged the kinship between Fijians and New Zealanders, one that has endured over ...
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    4 days ago
  • $19.9 million from PGF for Kawerau
    A $19.9 million investment from the Provincial Growth Fund will help develop essential infrastructure for an industrial hub in the Bay of Plenty town of Kawerau, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “The funding will go to three projects to further develop the Putauaki Trust Industrial Hub, an industrial ...
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    4 days ago
  • PGF funds Mahia roading package
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $8.3 million on a roading package for Mahia that will lead to greater and wider economic benefits for the region and beyond, Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced at an event in Mahia today. The $8.3 million announced consists of: $7 ...
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    4 days ago
  • 18,400 children lifted out of poverty
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed new reporting showing the Coalition Government is on track to meet its child poverty targets, with 18,400 children lifted out of poverty as a result of the Families Package.   Stats NZ has released the first set of comprehensive child poverty statistics since the Government ...
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    4 days ago
  • 20,000 more Kiwi kids on bikes
    Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter today announced that Bikes in Schools facilities have been rolled out to 20,000 more kiwi kids under this Government. She made the announcement at the opening of a new bike track at Henderson North School in Auckland. “Bikes in Schools facilities give kids ...
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    4 days ago
  • Benefit settings rise in line with wages as of 1 April
    Benefit settings rise in line with wages as of 1 April   Main benefits will increase by over 3 percent, instead of 1.66 percent, on 1 April with the Government’s decision to annually adjust benefit rates to increases in the average wage. The Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni, said ...
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    5 days ago
  • Foreign and Trade Ministers to lead business delegation to India
    Strengthening New Zealand’s political and business ties with India will be the focus of Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters’ and Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker’s visit to India this week. The Ministers are co-leading a high level business delegation to India to support increased people and economic engagement ...
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    5 days ago
  • Minister champions more Pacific in STEM – Toloa Awards
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio continues to champion for greater Pacific participation in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) careers with the announcement of the Toloa Awards, with 8 recipients of the Toloa Community Fund and 13 Toloa Tertiary Scholarships. “The Toloa Programme encourages more Pacific peoples ...
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    5 days ago
  • Submission period for whitebait consultation extended
    Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage has extended the date for people to have their say on proposed changes to improve management of whitebait across New Zealand.   Submissions were due to close on 2 March 2020 but will now remain open until 9am on Monday 16 March 2020.   “I have ...
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    6 days ago
  • New international protection for frequent fliers
    The endangered toroa/Antipodean albatross has new international protection for its 100,000km annual migration, thanks to collaborative efforts led by New Zealand, Australia and Chile.   Today, 130 countries agreed to strictly protect Antipodean albatross at the Conference of Parties on the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild ...
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    6 days ago