Open Mike 16/01/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 16th, 2017 - 139 comments
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139 comments on “Open Mike 16/01/2017”

  1. The Chairman 1

    The country’s two wealthiest people own the same amount as the poorest 30 percent in New Zealand.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/322422/top-1-percent-of-nzers-own-20-percent-of-wealth

    • Money quote (literally), to keep in mind for all those posts Farrar writes about how it’s really the rich people who pay all the taxes:

      … figures from Inland Revenue’s high wealth individuals unit found more than a third of this group [New Zealanders worth more than $50 million] declared income less than $70,000 in 2015. The 252 individuals were linked to 7500 entities, some of whom are in dispute with the agency over nearly $111 million in tax.

      • The Chairman 1.1.1

        Here’s another.

        “It blamed big business and the extremely wealthy for the growing discrepancy, saying they fuelled the inequality crisis by avoiding taxes, driving down wages for their workers and the prices paid to producers and investing less in their businesses.”

    • Adrian Thornton 1.2

      Well if you want to see exactly how extremely crazy and reactionary the rich and their media servants get if any politician even suggests limiting the flow of money upwards,then just google this.. ‘Corbyn income cap’ ..and witness the media frenzy, obviously there is to be no meaningful conversation around wealth inequality…just shut it down is the medias first and only reaction.
      I am not saying I support or don’t support this income cap proposal, I am just saying look at the reaction….brutal and decisive.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1

        An income cap and capital taxes are a necessity if we want to prevent our society going into collapse.

        • Adrian Thornton 1.2.1.1

          I agree, but try saying that in public like Corbyn, and see what happens.

          • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.1.1

            I know. I’ve said it often enough here and it’s obvious that even those on the Left don’t agree with me despite all the evidence showing having rich people is bad for society.

            Greed wins out even for those who say that they want an egalitarian society.

    • Paul 1.3

      What a miserable interview by RNZ.
      Stephen Joyce allowed to pontificate without any of his outrageous statements and evasions being challenged.

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player?audio_id=201829878

      • Wensleydale 1.3.1

        Well, you know, once Joyce and friends start being challenged in the public arena over their many and varied spurious claims, they start refusing to give interviews, and declining to front up altogether. Just ask John Campbell. No, they’re far more comfortable with tame interviewers who don’t ask the prickly questions and are less likely to humiliate them in public.

        • Johan 1.3.1.1

          Joyce and tame interviews is a must for Natioanal’s pr campaign, especially if one listens to the weekly Joyce and Annette King segment with Hoskings on radio. How pathetic it is with Hoskings, supposedly being the “unbiased moderator” Yeah Right, what a sicko the man is.

          • Wensleydale 1.3.1.1.1

            True.

            I remember watching Key’s Hard Talk interview with Stephen Sackur. Our ex-PM limped away from that one with a bloody nose and a black eye, and given his talent for glib non-answers and evasion, it was poetry in motion. Less able charlatans like Joyce, Bennett and Brownlee would be crucified in a similar situation.

            But no, with ‘true believers’ like Michael Hosking conducting the interrogation, they’ve nothing at all to worry about.

          • Adrian Thornton 1.3.1.1.2

            Yeh, Hosking and Henry both pretty despicable characters, but did you catch Gareth Morgan on Henry’s show? ..it was a beaut, resulting in this classic from Morgan…
            “I’m about making New Zealand fair,” said Morgan. “You’re self-centred and you don’t give a toss about being fair in New Zealand.”

            http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2016/12/tax-policy-bust-up-gareth-morgan-trades-insults-with-paul-henry.html

            • Johan 1.3.1.1.2.1

              I stopped watching the Paul Henry Show some time ago. The man is an absolute clown, I don’t understand how he can get away with his biased and self-centered attitude. Nice to see someone like Morgan put Henry in his place. Cheers.

      • tc 1.3.2

        You mean you want them to do their job paul ?

        good luck with that

    • Fisiani 1.4

      So what? Are you whining about whether it is one two or three people. Do you hate the rich or are you just jealous?

      • Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster 1.4.1

        Well, I can’t speak for Paul, but for myself, yes, I do hate the rich. Self-serving, opportunistic, grabbing and largely irrelevant – they are a blot on any democracy!

        This is not the NZ I grew up in, I am ashamed to say! The sooner we tax the bastards back to a reasonable level, and spread the wealth of society more equally, the better EVERYONE will be!

      • The Chairman 1.4.2

        I don’t hate the rich nor am I jealous.

        However we have a problem and it’s undermining our potential.

        As a nation, we could be doing so much better.

        An OECD report says: “rising inequality has wiped a third off New Zealand’s economic growth in recent decades.

        New Zealand’s economy should have grown by nearly 44 per cent between 1990 and 2010, but a widening gap between the haves and have-nots saw it grow by only 28 per cent, according to the report.

        The 15.5 percentage points New Zealand lost to inequality was the highest in the developed world.

        Inequality was also found to have knocked 11 points off growth in Mexico, nearly 9 points in the United Kingdom, Finland and Norway and between 6 and 7 points in the United States, Italy and Sweden.

        On the other hand, greater equality before the global financial crisis helped increase GDP per capita in Spain, France and Ireland.

        The OECD has called for higher taxes and more redistribution of wealth to combat inequality, which it found was damaging the economic performance of most developed nations.”

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/64000371/nz-economy-hard-hit-by-inequality-oecd

        Steven Joyce said it was inevitable some people would be more successful than others, which of course highlights his poor understanding of the problem.

        Of course some will be more successful than others. The problem is the balance in income structures has become excessively imbalanced.

        The pay difference between your average worker and your top executives has become far too extreme.

        This is being compounded by the ballooning cost of housing adding to net worth while also making it more difficult to put a roof over ones head.

        On top of that we have too many tax loopholes, leading to an industry dedicated to tax minimization, allowing businesses and individuals to avoid paying their fare share.

        So not only are those at the top end being paid excessively more, a number of them are paying far less in tax. Weakening the Government’s capability to redistribute the wealth.

        The weakening of Unions has also added to the income imbalance.

        Therefore, it’s clear there are a number of areas that require a rethink to correct this excessive imbalance.

  2. jcuknz 2

    Simplistic figures … I would rather know the proportions of folk who receive more in various benefits than they pay in tax.

    • mpledger 2.1

      But even that is too simplistic – pretty much everyone who lives past 65, over their lifetime, gets more in benefit then they pay in tax because the most costly time of their life is in their last 6 months of life. By that stage, inflation has made what they paid in tax a pittance.

      And it’s not only the cost of the benefit but the value of the benefit. Rich people get more value from the police force than poor people because rich people have more to lose if society became disordered. Rich people get more value from the legal system because they have the money to use it etc

      • Brutus Iscariot 2.1.1

        Not true – as in other regimes the rich would just up sticks and live in private compounds while the poorer and middle class would suffer through higher crime etc.

      • Rosemary McDonald 2.2.1

        Bloody old people!

        Be interesting to find out how long an old person collects the Super for compared with other benefits. Conceivably they could draw the Super for 25 years…which I imagine is a shit load longer than most on other benefits.

        Having said that…I do remember when they started calling the National Superannuation a “benefit” rather than an entitlement. There was an outcry at the time this linguistic manipulation of the national psyche, but it came to nought and “benefit” stuck.

        Used to be that you paid your PAYE and a certain % was ringfenced for your future retirement income.

        That chart needs wider dissemination.

        • mpledger 2.2.1.1

          The system is set-up so that when you pay tax you are eventually going to get more benefit than what you put in. That’s because the tax/benefit system is adjusted for people’s life course. It makes no sense to call people “takers” and “makers” at one particular point in time because pretty much anyone living until 65 is going to be a net taker.

          But that’s not a bug, that’s a feature.

    • Sabine 2.3

      define folk
      define more benefits then they pay in tax

      are you speaking of Landlords who receive rent income that is actually financed by the Accommodation Supplement given to people who can’t afford basic housing?

      are you speaking of People who recieve a food voucher which they will spend in a few Governmnet selected and favored businesses?

      are you speaking of People who are homeless and are ‘housed’ by a Government agency in Motels for usurious prices that have been ‘negotiated’ with the Government agency / minister in charge?

      are you speaking of People who receive unemployment benefits that they only receive because they lost a job and thus have paid taxes previously?

      are you speaking of People who receive a single parent benefit, who may or may not be divorced, separated, widowed or ‘single’, and who may or may not work a few hours a week, or who may or may not have a special needs child at home and who need the benefit for the children?

      are you speaking of People who are sick, may undergo treatment but need to be on the ‘Job Seekers Benefit’ cause we don’t have no more sickness benefit?

      whom are you speaking of?

      and are you aware that people on any benefit pay GSt on their income recieved? Or that they may be taxed Income Tax?

      or do you just feel that the poor rich people of this country really are just hard done by and should just simply not pay tax at all cause Rich?

    • Adrian Thornton 2.4

      Then there are those who seem to wear a cloak of invisibility.
      I know a member of my own family, who when dragged back to court for issues over financial support of his children, to be paid to his exwife, managed to prove that he had, to all intents and purposes, no actual income.
      Rather surprising given his inner city villa, the private schooling and nannies, and yes, his notable job in what I shall loosely refer to as ‘The Financial Sector’.

      I wonder how many people have enough assets and convoluted financial arrangements to get away with such a total piss take of the system??

    • Siobhan 2.5

      Then there are those who seem to wear a cloak of invisibility.
      I know a member of my own family, who when dragged back to court for issues over financial support of his children, to be paid to his exwife, managed to prove that he had, to all intents and purposes, no actual income.
      Rather surprising given his inner city villa, the private schooling and nannies, and yes, his notable job in what I shall loosely refer to as ‘The Financial Sector’.

      I wonder how many people have enough assets and convoluted financial arrangements to get away with such a total piss take of the system??

      • tc 2.5.1

        Alot more than before national removed gift duty which means massive sums can go into trusts in a single event with no duty payable.

        Once in a family trust its pretty much impregnable unless within 5 years and only to the IRD as far as I’m aware.

    • Red 2.6

      Plus capitalising their super that does not get measured in wealth calculations

    • Red 2.7

      Plus capitalising superannuation that does not get measured in wealth calculations

  3. jcuknz 3

    Instead of trying to tear folk down I would prefer constructive figures and Mpledger is obviously correct with the examples. The more affluent have the cash to employ accountants to keep their tax obligations down. While those without accept cash-in-hand to evade their obligations. “He without sin cast the first stone”

    • McFlock 3.1

      Apart from the fact that if a poor person evades tax, they spend it on food. If a rich person fiddles the books, they spend it on luxuries. And benefit fraudsters receive harsher penalties than tax fraudsters who fiddle the same amount.

      But your personal preference for figures for people who receive more in benefits than they pay in tax says it all. You don’t care if they need those benefits to live in a rest home at a young age because of a head injury, or if they have some other problem that would make them “deserving poor”. It just pisses you off that some people live below ther poverty line on the government dime.

      • Wensleydale 3.1.1

        Going after beneficiaries is the punitive equivalent of harvesting the low-hanging fruit. They usually have minimal resources, are unfamiliar with our labyrinthine legal system, often unaware of their rights and are generally vilified by Joe Public. It also enables the government to claim they’re doing something to combat “scrounging bludgers who steal from hard-working tax-payers”.

        Conversely, going after wealthy individuals and organisations, given their extensive networks of influence and vast resources, is frequently an expensive and difficult exercise with no guarantee of success. It’s easier to just leave all that in the too hard basket and keep pointing the finger at those dirty benes.

  4. Carolyn_nth 4

    Joe Carolan, standing for the Mt Albert electorate as a socialist, has a qu&a now up on The Daily Blog”. Beware, Carolan uses the “l” word (not the lesbian word – the other word) as a criticism.

    I think we need to have an alternative to that political class, that elite, and it needs to be led by working people themselves, the community themselves. Standing also in solidarity with other cultures. We’re a highly multicultural area here, my son goes to Owairaka school, a school of 50-60 cultures. The danger is if we don’t build a movement like that then we’re going to see the rise of a racist movement, what we’re seeing in England and the US, a polarisation of politics. The extreme centre – which is what we’re calling liberals now – cannot hold because it has no answers for the working class.

    My bold

    Some things Carolan stands for and by:

    Parliament won’t change things for the better for working people. It needs a collection of mass movements by the people.

    Carolan urges people to get involved in whichever movement they feel most strongly about.

    So that’s one major way inequality manifests, the combination of low wages and high rents forcing people out of wonderful communities where they’re lived. Where you have unequal societies, even your middle class suffers – from more crime, more burglaries, more insecurity… I think there’s a growing number of middle class people in this area who worry about poverty, about where we’re going. They would support things like making the minimum wage a living wage, and some form of rent control so we don’t end up in segregated gated communities.

    First of all, I share that distrust in politicians. When you look at parliamentary questions and see them bickering like schoolchildren, that turns everyone off. And their litany of broken promises. We have no control over these people once they do get elected. They can break every promise they make. And that’s all the major parties. I stand for a different kind of politics, based on people power and social movements themselves:

    What we’re actually asking people to do is get involved in movements. If you want to fight for rent control, then join the housing movement. If you’re concerned about low pay, join a union. We’ll come and show you how to organise your workplace, how to fight back, get a big pay increase. These things are possible without politicians but it IS politics. Working class politics.

    Quite a long q&a – more at the link above.

    But he’s still standing for an electorate? Or is it just that he’s using it as a platform to encourage mobilisation of the people?

    Edit: Carolan also attacks what he calls Green Party “Eco-facism” – their policy of “sustainable immigration” – Carolan says this is the first step towards Eco-fascism.

    • Andre 4.1

      So will it be fair to use Joe Carolan’s vote share to infer how much support there is for a popular movement based around those principles?

    • Adrian Thornton 4.2

      “The extreme centre – which is what we’re calling liberals now – cannot hold because it has no answers for the working class.”
      Pretty hard to argue with that statement.

      • Pat 4.2.1

        who exactly are the “extreme centre”?…and why can they have no answers for the working class?….seems a foolish statement to me given that for every 1000 people in NZ 554 are wage or salary earners…..the extreme centre and the working class would appear to me to have a substantial overlap .

        • Adrian Thornton 4.2.1.1

          Extreme centre….
          short explanation…

          Long explanation…

          • Paul 4.2.1.1.1

            And by framing the right wing as centre, Corbyn becomes ‘hard left.’
            (with reference to yesterday’s conversation)

            • Adrian Thornton 4.2.1.1.1.1

              No, because the centre ‘right’ and ‘left’ have at their core the same economic ideology, they in real terms occupy the same space, politically..so Corbyn is just tradition Left, and not hard left as the media make him out to be.
              But as the media don’t acknowledge the two centists partys as being the same thing, which of course they wouldn’t, there are no surprises in their position.

          • Pat 4.2.1.1.2

            ok…the short answer doesn’t address my post at all and i don’t have time to watch the long answer at the moment…how about you answer in your own words?

        • Carolyn_nth 4.2.1.2

          The “extreme centrte” refers to the dominant political parties, which label themselves as “left” and “right” but follow the same neoliberal agenda, as Olwyn explains below.

          The working class – duh, is large numbers of people, not politicians or party members – well a handful of people from the working classes may become politicians: some from the working class (and some from the middle class) may believe that their party will help the working classes.

          But if the main pollies and their parties follow neoliberal policies/agenda, then they have nothing to offer the working class – ie majority of people within that class.

          The overlap is relatively small, and irrelevant if some working class people subscribe to a party agenda that does nothing for the working class in general.

          • Pat 4.2.1.2.1

            so the extreme centre are the political parties, not a constituent cohort……think that unless that clear distinction is made (and throwing around the term extreme centre doesn’t do that) then any point attempted to be made around this will be largely dismissed.

            • Carolyn_nth 4.2.1.2.1.1

              Well, I guess it could include people who vote for the “extreme centre” parties.

              Many of us think we are not being offered much of a difference between Nat/Labour/maybe Lab-Green; or between Republican/Democrat; or/Tory/Labour; or Aussie coalition/Labour. Though in each pair I’d say they Labour or Green parties are somewhat the better option. But all support the neoliberal agenda pretty much – well maybe not the Corbynistas.

              And ultimately, the working classes, the unemployed, people on low incomes, the precariat, etc will continue to suffer, unless there is a true left wing option.

              I do think it will need a strong, broad coalition of grass-roots, left wing campaigns and movements to shift political parties and pollies to a truly left wing position.

    • “Eco-fascists,” ffs. To committed socialists, everyone else is some kind of fascist. I guess I should be glad he restricted himself to “extreme centre” for describing liberals – I was half expecting it to be “liberal fascists.”

      I’m also curious as to what kind of voter would try to elect to Parliament someone who thinks it’s a serious mistake to believe change can come “at a Parliamentary level.”

    • Olwyn 4.4

      “The Extreme Centre” is a term coined by Tariq Ali, and refers to opposing parties having the same core commitment to a market economy, while maintaining differences in branding. https://www.versobooks.com/books/1943-the-extreme-centre

      I think Joe Carolan right about forming and getting involved in movements. Neoliberalism has robbed a large part of the population of a real stake in society, and forming movements is a first step toward making a bid to reclaim it. I don’t see such movements as being in competition with the political parties of the left, but as creating platforms from which to influence and put pressure on them, rather as the business round table, etc. are able to do on the right.

      • Bill 4.4.1

        Agree. So thinking of the union movement (when it was one) or the civil rights movement. Political Parties could ‘ride’ off the back of them in terms of legislation or policy formation, but the movements themselves were much, much broader (and messier in a good way) than anything a party could encapsulate.

        Today, maybe momentum in the UK is playing that role to a degree.

        In NZ, MANA tripped itself badly as a party by making claims to movement status. The attempt to be both introduces too many contradictions at too many levels to ever get off the ground.

        I was thinking it would be nice if Joe showed signs of having understood from his time in MANA that one political entity cannot straddle (cannot be) both of those worlds (the world of political movements and the world of political parties).

        So I read the piece looking for pointers, and sadly…

        A lot of the parliamentary parties are hollowed out entities, they are not the movements they used to be – National, Labour and even the Greens.

        The Labour Party was never a movement. Labour was a movement. The Labour Party was a party.

        But maybe I’m putting too much score by a single pronouncement. Maybe it’s not really indicative of his thoughts and was a slip or just an unfortunate use of shorthand.

        • Olwyn 4.4.1.1

          It’s probably charitable to regard the Joe quote as shorthand 🙂 I agree with you about not conflating a political movement with a parliamentary party, and am reminded of Roosevelt’s saying of the New Deal, “you make me do it”, meaning “I need pressure from the outside to get this through.” A strong movement from outside of parliament helps a political wing to fend off the counter-pressures that arise from within it.

        • Clump_AKA Sam 4.4.1.2

          Yes well it is a recipe for failure, but I wouldn’t totally mock rebranding, if properly executed. We’re not playing policy for the next day to 6 months, you should be trying to advertise policy that lands in the week leading up to early votes start pouring in. These types of analysis are tough to do, even the best prognosticators only get 6 out of ten calls right. But rebranding properly executed this way is a huge moral booster.

      • I don’t see such movements as being in competition with the political parties of the left, but as creating platforms from which to influence and put pressure on them, rather as the business round table, etc. are able to do on the right.

        And good so. Best of luck to them all. But when it comes to political parties, for those of us who prefer to deal with the real, actually-existing world rather than utopias that could possibly come to exist if everyone else shared our ideology, the “extreme centre” Labour and Green parties with their shameful “core commitment to a market economy” are the only credible vehicles for effecting legislative change. Calling them eco-fascists and extremists isn’t the best way either to influence them or to have a chance of putting them where they can effect legislative change.

        • Carolyn_nth 4.4.2.1

          Having Carolan and Bright and/or others (TOP?) in the by-election might make for some interesting debates though. How will Ardern & Genter respond to such criticisms?

          And it will be interesting to see which of the also-rans the MSM pick up on during their by-election coverage.

        • Olwyn 4.4.2.2

          “eco-fascist” is Joe Carolan talking, not me. I said I agreed with him about the need for extra-parliamentary movements, but did not touch on his characterisation of the current parliamentary parties.

          • Psycho Milt 4.4.2.2.1

            Sorry about that. My comment was aimed at clarifying my own views on Carolan’s post rather than addressing your comment, which I shouldn’t have because that isn’t really what the Reply button is there for.

        • adam 4.4.2.3

          Good luck with your real world Psycho Milt, best of British luck in it. I look forward to your next anti working people rank.

  5. Tautoko Mangō Mata 5

    Interesting article on source protection.
    https://theintercept.com/2015/01/28/how-to-leak-to-the-intercept/

  6. Carolyn_nth 6

    On RNZ, highlighted as part of their “Best of 2016” series, and article and audio pretty much arguing the point I made a couple of days ago – about the “myth”/narrative of NZ identity, that has been historically constructed as rural, and associated with the open spaces and rural areas:

    Kim Hill’s interview with historian Ben Schrader, Oct 2016:

    For about 100 years, most New Zealanders have lived in towns and cities, yet our national narrative is that we are people of the land.


    An anti-urban current was also being felt in Australia and North America, he says, but by the end of the 19th century, their large impressive cities with strong manufacturing bases were winning people over.

    He suspects the cultural divide between town and country has always been stronger here.

    “In New Zealand it’s always been this idea that the backbone of the country is the farmers – the Farmer Backbone mantra … and cities are just peripheral to that.”


    He sees New Zealand’s much-loved quarter-acre section as a kind of middle ground between rural and urban living.

    “We’re urban, but we’re building cities that are different to those in the old world.”

    Dr Schrader says we can still see this cultural thread today in the backlash against those arguing for the intensification of Auckland.

    “For 150 years people have wanted to live in the city and the country at the same time.”

    Dr Schrader says confirmation that the rural man alone is no longer seen as the archetypal New Zealander came back in 2012, when the Speights ‘Southern Man’ campaign ended.

    “The relevance of the outdoor life has changed” said a Speights spokesperson at the time.

  7. Andre 7

    For those that missed it, here’s Trump’s first press conference.

  8. Penny Bright 8

    In my view – the forced Auckland ‘$upercity – for the 1%’, was effectively a corrupt corporate coup, and another massive dose of Neo-liberal ‘Rogernomics’ at NZ local government level.

    Unlike all the other ‘declared’ Mt Albert by-election candidates, I was one of the very few, who has consistently and persistently opposed this Auckland ‘Supercity – super RIPOFF’ from Day One.

    Day One being 5 September 2006, the day where the four previous City Council Mayors, at the Auckland Mayoral Forum in the Auckland Town Hall, ‘ganged up’ against Mike Lee (then Chair of the Auckland Regional Council ARC) and signed an ‘Open Letter’ to Labour PM Helen Clark, calling for an Auckland ‘Supercity’.

    Fellow ‘Public Watchdog’ Lisa Prager and I, having been tipped off about this meeting, gate-crashed it and disrupted it, on the basis that there was no lawful basis for these Mayors to attempt to push any such thing, without first consulting the public.

    It worked.

    That day became known as ‘the failed Mayoral coup’.

    How many of you knew about that?

    The corporate agenda was always fewer contracts for fewer but bigger private contractors.

    First Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs) – then Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs).

    How many of the other ‘declared’ Mt Albert by-election candidates have consistently and persistently opposed these mechanisms for corporate control – CCOs and PPPs?

    Penny Bright

    Proven ‘anti-privatisation / anti- corruption campaigner’.

    2017 Independent candidate Mt Albert by-election.

  9. Penny Bright 9

    Why would the people of Mt Albert vote for their MP, someone who was already an MP?

    Wouldn’t that effectively be a wasted vote?

    Penny Bright

    Proven ‘anti-privatisation / anti-corruption campaigner’.

    2017 Independent candidate Mt Albert by-election.

    • james 9.1

      “Wouldn’t that effectively be a wasted vote?”

      Nope.

      A vote for Penny Bright is a wasted vote – evidenced by your track record.

      • Penny Bright 9.1.1

        I note that Jacinda didn’t win the electorate vote in Auckland Central – so does the same comment equally apply to her?

        Just asking – nicely 🙂

        Kind regards

        Penny Bright

        2017 Independent candidate for Mt Albert by-election.

        • richard rawshark 9.1.1.1

          Penny, you’d have a chance if you didn’t [deleted] I mean refusing to pay your rates.., got you labelled a weirdo, you’ll have to do a lot of public good deeds to get that stigma off your name. I’m sorry if you don’t like reading it, but hell women you were all over the paper.

          http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/79459454/Auckland-protester-Penny-Bright-won-t-budge-over-50k-rates-arrears-bill

          [deleted]

          [Okay Richard. I’ve been tolerant and let a fair few things slide these past couple of days. But that bullshit just steps waaay over the line. Take a week out.] – Bill

          • Penny Bright 9.1.1.1.1

            Oh – you must have missed that over 7000 people did vote for me in the 2016 Auckland Mayoralty?

            Despite the effective mainstream media censorship?

        • Ad 9.1.1.2

          She got pretty close – it was worth the fight, and she and her team worked hard to get that close.

          • Penny Bright 9.1.1.2.1

            Appreciate that point.

            However, if James is suggesting that folks shouldn’t vote for someone because they haven’t won when they’ve stood as a candidate – I’m just pointing out the inconsistency in that argument?

            Don’t forget that in the Mt Albert electorate are a very large number of voters who have voted for parties other than Labour or the Greens?

            What will they do?

            For whom will they vote?

            Will they all just stay home – or might a significant number of them be moved to cast a ‘protest vote’ against the rorts, ripoffs, bribery and corruption in order to get a proven ‘anti-corruption’ campaigner inside the House, which, in itself will send a clear message that can’t be ignored?

            How will voting for an existing MP who is already in Parliament, with no proven track record in fighting for transparency in the spending of public monies on private consultants and contractors – do THAT?

            How many of the ‘declared’ Mt Albert candidates and people generally, have yet studied the 226 page ‘Reasons for the Verdict of Fitzgerald J’ – in the unprecedented bribery and corruption convictions of Murray Noone and Stephen Borlase?

            Here’s the full Judgment:

            https://www.courtsofnz.govt.nz/cases/r-v-borlase-reasons/@@images/fileDecision

            Ive spent days studying this document, and, in my view it’s politically explosive.

            Interested in discussing it and intend to help make it a major Mt Albert by-election issue.

            Penny Bright

        • Red 9.1.1.3

          No considering she was just a point or two of winning, your record is a gap bigger than the Grand Canyon under every campaign you have entered

          • Penny Bright 9.1.1.3.1

            Really?

            So you are unaware of the Avondale / Mt Roskill (Auckland City Council) by-election result in 2000?

            Penny Bright

            2017 Independent candidate Mt Albert by-election.

            • Red 9.1.1.3.1.1

              if I was I would be very concerned why I know this, a council by election 16 years ago, honestly

              • Penny Bright

                I stood as a candidate for the Water Pressure Group and polled 2nd, with nearly 6,500 votes.

                Campaigned against Metrowater – the commercialisation and privatisation of water services, and against the ‘Rogernomics’ Neo-liberal model, and nearly caused an upset.

                (700 votes behind Noelene Raffills).

                Over 4000 votes more than the City Vision (Labour /Alliance) candidate.

                I stood because a number of City Vision Auckland City Councillors had sold out on their stated policies / pledges to abolish Metrowater.

                (There will be some from The Standard who will recall this.)

                Raised a few eyebrows at the time….

                Penny Bright

                2017 Independent candidate for the Mt Albert by-election.

      • Andre 9.1.2

        Aw, c’mon james, where’s your sense of humour? We could rename Parliament TV to “Penny in Da House” and it might even become fun to watch. Besides, 7 months of an MP’s salary should be enough for Penny to pay her rates bill so we can stop hearing about that all the time.

  10. halfcrown 10

    This shit has got to stop and restrictions put on foreign “investors”

    The last sentence gets me

    “Though it had no “concrete” plans for the properties, “commercial sense” indicated the site would be developed to help ease Auckland’s housing shortage.”

    Nah fucking Bullshit, that is the last thing they are thinking of. They are more interested in making a killing owing to the housing crisis created by this pack of shit we have as a government.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11782787

    • james 10.1

      “owing to the housing crisis created by this pack of shit we have as a government.”

      Remind me which government signed the free trade agreement that allowed overseas Chinese to buy houses here with out restriction?

      Hint – it was labour.

      • richard rawshark 10.1.1

        remind me, you want a five or ten minute argument on the things governments have done.. I mean that’s a risky line, secondly, there are always restrictions..don’t make a little truth and then add a big fat lie.

        and it was not Labour who let 70k a month into the country, they still had to go through the appropriate channels.., but under National they flooded the place with money, they sold out to crime and money laundering, National, there is no other you could compare to that.

        as for stupidity both parties earn a gold star for wiliam liu turns out he’s connected with drug deals all sorts yet both parties were happy to blow him daily for cash..

        aww the commies are after me, i’m rich.. how the hell do you get THAT rich in china?

        James, your a proven shit stirrer, track record, every post, truth a smidgeon lies a lot.. /slap

      • Paul 10.1.2

        Both Labour and National are slaves to neo-liberal ideology.
        It would appear you support the more extreme version of neo-liberalism, so you hardly in a position to criticise Labour on this.

      • halfcrown 10.1.3

        James @ 10.1.1

        Who said it wasn’t but it still doesn’t get away from the fact we have a pack of shit as a government that has been in government for eight years and done fuck all about it and made the situation worse by selling off state houses.,.
        If you are going to start the “labour did it as well” shit I haven’t seen this pack of crap reversing the rules YET.

      • Psycho Milt 10.1.4

        Remind me which government signed the free trade agreement that allowed overseas Chinese to buy houses here with out restriction?

        Labour. Now let’s remind ourselves which government has been in power for all the years since it became apparent that wasn’t a good idea and is causing the country significant damage? National.

        Labour gets to claim “unforeseen consequences” to account for its role in this debacle. National gets to choose from “incompetence,” “neglect,” “greed” or “malice” to explain its involvement. My money would be on “greed,” that one’s always a safe bet with Nat govts.

    • The Chairman 10.2

      Unitary Plan driving up the cost/value of housing.

      “In scenes likely to be repeated across the Super City, large subdividable sites are proving irresistible to wealthy investors due to their newfound development potential under the Unitary Plan.”

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11782787

  11. Rosemary McDonald 11

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11782951

    This shit needs sorting now.

    Like, seriously, its 20 bleeding 17 and the Christchurch City Council is still discharging untreated wastewater and sewerage into the Avon and Heathcote Rivers.

    FFS…stop blaming the earthquake….how about bulding a bigger capacity waste water treatment plant on some of that red zoned land?

  12. Ad 12

    To sort out fake news from real news, you need to study art history – even more than STEM subjects (!):

    http://www.salon.com/2017/01/15/the-art-of-learning-why-art-history-might-be-the-most-important-subject-you-could-study-today/

    • Andre 12.1

      I dunno, man, that one looks dodgy to me. Better hold judgement until more corroboration comes along.

      • Clump_AKA Sam 12.1.1

        Reporters don’t quite know what to make of the like economy because so much advertising revenue is getting sucked into social media, away from production costs. This is what trying to breathe life into a dead corpse looks like. It’s unfortunate this had to happen to people like Pilger/5thestate/Mihingarangi/Campbell/ect.

  13. bwaghorn 14

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11782947

    english backed labours ets , i wonder if he backed keys gutting of it .

  14. Paul 15

    It’s Time To Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

  15. Paul 16

    Simon Wilson highlights National’s Index of Shame.
    For me, the issues I would focus on most are Inequality (#1, #4, #7, #8 and and #12), the Environment (#2, # 17 and #9) and workers rights (#5 and and #10)

    1. Child poverty
    2. Filthy rivers
    3. Domestic violence
    4. Tax evasion
    5. Farm worker deaths
    6. Underfunded mental health services
    7. The surging wealth inequality gap
    8. The housing crisis
    9. The Emissions Trading Scheme
    10. Pike River
    11. The Saudi sheep deal
    12. Housing the homeless
    13. Healthy food in schools
    14. Underfunded homecare services for the elderly
    15. The neglect of Northland
    16. Abuse of children in state care
    17. Deep-sea oil drilling
    18. Blaming Helen Clark

    For more details read here

    http://thespinoff.co.nz/politics/14-01-2017/nationals-index-of-shame-and-the-other-issues-the-left-need-to-focus-on-this-election/?utm_source=The+Spinoff&utm_medium=CPE&utm_campaign=National%E2%80%99s+Index+of+Shame%2C+and+the+other+issues+the+left+need+to+focus+on+this+election

  16. bwaghorn 17

    A woman in a hot air balloon realized she was lost. She reduced altitude and spotted a man below. She descended a bit more and shouted: “‘Excuse me, can you help me? I promised a friend I would meet him an hour ago but I don’t know where I am”. The man below replied “You’re in a hot air balloon hovering approximately 30 feet above the ground. You’re between 40 and 41 degrees north latitude and between 59 and 60 degrees west longitude”.
    “You must be a technician.” said the balloonist. “I am” replied the man “how did you know?” “Well,” answered the balloonist, “everything you have told me is probably technically correct, but I’ve no idea what to make of your information and the fact is, I’m still lost. Frankly, you’ve not been much help at all. If anything, you’ve delayed my trip with your talk.”
    The man below responded, “You must be in management”. “I am” replied the balloonist, “but how did you know?” “Well,” said the man “you don’t know where you are or where you’re going. You have risen to where you are, due to a large quantity of hot air. You made a promise, which you’ve no idea how to keep, and you expect people beneath you to solve your problems. The fact is you are in exactly the same position you were in before we met, but now, somehow, it’s my fucking fault!

  17. joe90 19

    Fascists of the world unite.
    /

    Would you believe it? I have been gifted tickets to the Presidential Inauguration Ceremony of @realDonaldTrump – What an honour! #auspol— Pauline Hanson (@PaulineHansonOz) January 15, 2017

  18. Looks like a legal challenge of the Government’s stance on Medical Cannabis is brewing.

    http://publicaddress.net/hardnews/is-the-ministry-of-health-acting-outside/

  19. Despite all the discussions above I am still waiting for the Nat’s to tell us why Key resigned.

  20. Despite all the above concerns I am still waiting for the Nat’s to tell us why Key resigned.

    • Here’s a tip: if the piece is in the “Opinion” section and says “Opinion” right next to the headline, chances are it’s an opinion piece and not news, fake or otherwise.

      Nothing fake about this bit:
      The essential question of how to tackle the City banks and law firms that launder money for the Russian kleptocracy has yet to be faced.

      Vlad doesn’t need to worry about the Tories taking any serious anti-Russian actions as long as that cash cornucopia’s still operating. In the unlikely event you see Theresa May actually doing something about that money-laundering, then it’s time to worry.

  21. Morrissey 26

    Shame on Jesse Jackson, John Lewis, and Cory Booker;
    When the U.S. most needs leadership, they have failed egregiously.

    Over the last week or so, we have heard much about three men, all of them Democratic Party politicians, who have spoken out strongly against Donald Trump. Congressman JOHN LEWIS of Georgia is a legend in the civil rights community; more than fifty years ago, he marched with Martin Luther King Jr. from Selma to Birmingham, and had his skull smashed by “law enforcement” thugs. The Rev. JESSE JACKSON in 1988 got 6.6 million votes in his run for the Democratic nomination; he is famous around the world for his eloquent defense of human rights. And New Jersey senator CORY BOOKER last week became the second senator in history to testify against one of his colleagues when, at the Senate confirmation hearing, he spoke against Trump’s unbelievable nomination for Attorney General, the racist Alabama senator Jefferson Beauregard Sessions.

    This all sounds impressive, and it’s the kind of political news that gives people hope during these dark and dread-filled days of waiting for the horrifying reality of a Ku Klux Klan-endorsed candidate reciting the Presidential oath on Friday.

    Actually, on close inspection, these three turn out to be no more honest or trustworthy than some of their more unpleasant, less revered colleagues. This past week both Lewis and Jackson have shown that, whatever glorious and brave deeds they have performed in the past, they are first and foremost Democratic Party loyalists. And being a Democratic Party loyalist right now means that you are under intense pressure to repeat the most absurd, fantastic and lurid anti-Russian propaganda.

    The other day, on NBC’s Meet the Press John Lewis, civil rights hero, lowered himself to the level of the most shameless Clinton apparatchiks as he delivered the following fantasy, which might as well have been written for him by John Dean or Debbie Wasserman Schultz….

    “I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president….I think the Russians participated in helping this man get elected. And they helped destroy the candidacy of Hillary Clinton.”

    http://reason.com/blog/2017/01/14/rep-john-lewis-says-trump-is-not-a-legit

    Equally on message, equally loyal, equally cynical is another former civil rights warrior, Jesse Jackson who, when taunted by a Fox News troll to comment on why Hillary Clinton lost, said this:

    “Well somewhere between Russian hacking and corruption and voter suppression may give you an answer.”

    http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/jesse-jackson-gave-fox-news-troll-perfect-answer-why-hillary-lost-less-10-seconds

    And as for Senator Cory Booker: well, the United States needs another Barack Obama like it needs another nuclear weapons building program….

    http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/1/14/14262732/cory-booker-senate-democrats

    At a time when the United States more than ever needs people of proven rectitude and character to step forward and speak truthfully and fearlessly, two old civil rights warriors have thrown in the towel, and a superficially attractive young politician is exposed as just another smooth-talking fraud. Thus party politics doth make cowards of us all.

  22. Paul 27

    Stephen Cohen on Tucker Carlson: Empty Accusations of Russian Meddling Have Become “Grave National Security Threat”

  23. Paul 28

    Tucker Carlson and Glenn Greenwald Discuss Deep State War Vs Trump

  24. Paul 29

    “Trump will be assassinated” Paul Craig Roberts & Max Keiser

  25. Paul 30

    Last Minute Change in Security at Inauguration Reminiscent of JFK in Dealey Plaza

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