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Open Mike 16/12/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 16th, 2016 - 208 comments
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208 comments on “Open Mike 16/12/2016 ”

  1. ScottGN 1

    At least 2 million bucks and counting for Corrections to put prison guards into hotels as they clean up the Serco mess at Mt Eden.
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/320549/mt-eden-prison-guards-put-up-in-4-1-2-star-hotel

    • Cinny 1.1

      That’s shocking as. Housing crisis to blame? Lack of motels maybe?
      Why on earth put up guards at a Hotel, sick of it, sick of the overspending and mismanagement of NZ’s finances at the hands of the outgoing national government.

      2 million !! Imagine the good that kind of money could have done rather than giving it all to a local hotel. I wonder if the national government needs some budgeting advice? Sick of them wasting money, enough is enough.

      • saveNZ 1.1.1

        Bet Scenic Hotels is not complaining.

        • Wensleydale 1.1.1.1

          Scenic Hotels? The same Scenic Hotels owned by a certain Earl Hagaman? What an astoundingly fortuitous coincidence.

      • greywarshark 1.1.2

        Cinny
        Yes, exactly right. This is part of the National Party neolib adventure which promises business that it will sell, often quite cheaply, all its service performance requirements to them. Businesses are working to attach their suckers to every available entry in the government fabric.

        Leeches are cleaners, useful insects when used in medicine. Private enterprise used sometimes is useful, but not when NZ is getting a third carve-up, first Maui, second the colonial rush, and third the neo lib nasties.
        Bad medicine. Will this period be known as The Age of the Locusts?

  2. Paul 2

    This is now the third article by experienced independent journalists denouncing the propaganda being fed to the Western public,

    This article is worth reporting in detail.

    Why is it ok to bomb Mosul but not Aleppo?
    Assad and his allies have carried out war crimes. But so have the rebels

    by Peter Oborne

    British news-papers have been informing their readers about two contrasting battles in the killing grounds of the Middle East.
    For the past few weeks, One is Mosul , in northern Iraq, where western reporters are accompanying an army of liberation as it frees a joyful population from terrorist control. The other concerns Aleppo, just a few hundred miles to the west.This, apparently, is the exact opposite.
    Here, a murderous dictator, hellbent on destruction, is waging war on his own people.

    Both these narratives contain strong elements of truth. There is no question that President Assad and his Russian allies have committed war crimes, and we can all agree that Mosul will be far better off without Isis. Nevertheless, the situations in Mosul and Aleppo are fundamentally identical. In both cases, forces loyal to an internationally recognised government are attacking well-populated cities, with the aid of foreign air power. These cities are under the control of armed groups or terrorists, who are holding a proportion of their population hostage.

    In Mosul, fewer than 10,000 Isis fighters control about a million people. In eastern Aleppo, it is estimated that about 5,000 armed men, the majority linked to al–Qaeda, dominate a population of about 200,000. In each case the armed groups use the zones they occupy to attack government areas with rockets, mortars and other weapons.

    So Prime Minister al-Abadi in Iraq and President Assad in Syria face the same dilemma. Should they do nothing for fear of killing civilians? Or do they take air action and eliminate the so-called rebels, but at terrible cost in innocent blood as they wage merciless war against ruthless insurgents?

    In both cases, enormous bloodshed could be prevented if the terrorist groups let the civilian population leave. Last month the UN special envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, pleaded with Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (formerly al-Qaeda, but now decoupled and rebranded) to do just that: ‘One thousand of you are deciding the destiny of 270,000 civilians.’ He pointedly used the word ‘hostage’ to describe the way these civilians were being held by the rebels and not by Assad.

    This episode highlighted the double standard about western reporting of these terrible problems.
    In Mosul, western reporters travelling with the invading Iraqi army publish pictures of joyful populations liberated from the jihadists. In Aleppo, the attempt to free the city from al-Qaeda control is portrayed as a remorseless attack on the civilian population.

    A further double standard concerns the reporting of Russian and Syrian atrocities. Much has — rightly — been made of the so-called barrel bombs dropped on Aleppo by the Russians. Yet rebel commanders in eastern Aleppo use equally hideous weapons. Last April, fighters from Jaish al-Islam, backed by Saudi Arabia and considered moderate enough that American diplomats retain relations with them, admitted to using chemical weapons against the Kurds in Aleppo. This attack received almost no attention from the media, and failed to generate the faintest outrage in Britain.

    Yet another double standard applies to the destruction of hospitals. When I was in Aleppo, I interviewed Mohamad El-Hazouri, head of the department of health, at the Razi hospital. He told me that when rebel groups entered the city they put six of the 16 hospitals out of service, as well as 100 of the 201 health centres, and wiped out the ambulance service.

    There is a wider pattern at work here. When opponents of the West try to reclaim urban areas from terrorists, they are denounced. When our allies do the same — think of Israel in Gaza or the Saudis in Yemen — we defend them. We judge Assad by one set of rules, and ourselves and our own allies by another.

    Why is it ok to bomb Mosul but not Aleppo?

      • Morrissey 2.1.2

        And by Stephen Cohen, who ripped that sleazy and dishonest servant of Washington, Kenneth Roth, a new one on Democracy Now yesterday….

        https://www.democracynow.org/2016/12/14/slaughter_or_liberation_a_debate_on

        Right at the end of the discussion, Stephen Cohen lost all patience with Roth, and dealt to him….

        STEPHEN COHEN: That’s not talking with Putin; that’s putting pressure on Putin.

        KENNETH ROTH: And talk to him, too. And we never objected to the ongoing debate, the ongoing conversation, but it shouldn’t be in lieu of the kind of pressure, which is all that Putin listens to these days.

        STEPHEN COHEN: Oh, for God’s sake. That’s all he listens to. And you base that on what? Your careful study—

        KENNETH ROTH: I’m watching—I’ve watched—

        STEPHEN COHEN: Your careful study of Putin? Your following of Russian politics?

        KENNETH ROTH: I’ve watched two—yeah, I’ve watched—let me answer. Let me answer.

        STEPHEN COHEN: Look, at some point, let’s be fact-based, OK?

        KENNETH ROTH: I’ve watched him for two years—

        STEPHEN COHEN: You simply don’t know what you’re—oh.

        KENNETH ROTH: —talk and talk and talk with Kerry and Lavrov.

        STEPHEN COHEN: Oh, oh.

        KENNETH ROTH: And he just continued with the atrocities.

        STEPHEN COHEN: You watched it, or you listened to what he said? Or you listened—you read it?

        KENNETH ROTH: The only way to ratchet up—the only way he has made any—

        STEPHEN COHEN: Oh, for God’s sake.

        KENNETH ROTH: —change in Syria is when the pressure mounts.

        STEPHEN COHEN: We’re back to Syria now.

        AMY GOODMAN: We’re going to have to leave it there. We’re going to have to leave it there, but I want to thank you both for being a part of this discussion. Stephen Cohen is professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at Princeton and New York University. And Kenneth Roth is executive director of Human Rights Watch. This is Democracy Now! When we come back, we look at Trump’s pick to be the secretary of energy, Rick Perry. Stay with us.

        • Psycho Milt 2.1.2.1

          Your transcript just shows an incoherent person pointlessly interrupting someone.

          • Morrissey 2.1.2.1.1

            The only incoherent person in that studio was Kenneth Roth. Professor Cohen rightly pointed out that Roth knew virtually nothing and was a thoughtless megaphone for the State Department.

            That you choose to call Professor Cohen’s challenging of that charlatan a “pointless interruption” tells us everything we need to know about how frivolous and insubstantial you are.

            • Psycho Milt 2.1.2.1.1.1

              I had a look at the transcript on the site you linked to and I see Roth describing what’s happening and Cole obfuscating on behalf of the Russians. To you, that’s “frivolous and insubstantial,” but you always have plenty to say about how ignorant and unsophisticated other people are, usually while peddling some risible nonsense yourself, so I won’t be losing any sleep over it.

              • Morrissey

                I had a look at the transcript on the site you linked to and I see Roth describing what’s happening and Cole [sic] obfuscating on behalf of the Russians.

                If Roth had merely been “describing what’s happening”, Cohen would not have had to point out that he was merely repeating the most inflammatory State Department rhetoric. And you are deliberately misconstruing what Professor Cohen said.

                The “frivolous and insubstantial” charge was directed at you.

    • This is now the third article by experienced independent journalists denouncing the propaganda being fed to the Western public…

      Well, denouncing one side’s propaganda while propagating the other side’s, maybe.

      And the headline “Why is it ok to bomb Mosul but not Aleppo?” must be one of the most cynical and disingenuous lines written about this conflict by someone not directly employed as a propagandist. No wonder you’re promoting it.

      • Paul 2.2.1

        I don’t think you’ll find any of the above journalists are propagating one side.
        They are simply pointing out that the corporate embedded message we are getting is extremely one sided.

        Just look at the bias served to us by our media.

        Aleppo
        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11751073
        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11720721

        Mosul
        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11762531
        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11716068

        Can’t you see it???

        • marty mars 2.2.1.1

          So what? What is your point? That media is bias – well fuck me dead I never realised. //SARC

          It seems like the – look at this disgusting porn which I have now watched for 3 hours non-stop to see how bad it is. War/propaganda porn is as damaging and delusional.

          • Morrissey 2.2.1.1.1

            fuck me dead I never realised

            Sadly, some of your recent comments confirm that to be true, marty.

            • Paul 2.2.1.1.1.1

              It is clear many people do take the news they consume at face value.
              Simply questioning the narrative over Mosul and Aleppo has ensured a lot of flak.

              • I get that Paul – is it the questioning of the narrative that is your main point.

                Some of us never accept the narrative even if it is all over the MSM – you know that right. Some of us know that it is propaganda AND that still, in 2017, people are getting slaughtered – whether by this creed or that one – you know that right. Some of us are SO far away from the murders and atrocities that we realise ANY of our conclusions derived from some information from there, is always bias to our own preconceived ideas, ideals, and ethos, and we accept that.

            • marty mars 2.2.1.1.1.2

              why don’t you piss off morrie – your snide digs show what an inadequate little prat you are – go send another email dissing Kim Hill why don’t you you pompous freak.

              • Morrissey

                Thanks! That’s a classic demonstration of indignatio.

                May I use it for an upcoming playlet I’m working on?

                • you know you’re a turd morrie – sure, a pretentious one who has a very inflated and puffed up view of his own intelligence and insight and that is your right. Try doing some wider and deeper reading if you want your piglet to fly.

                  • greywarshark

                    marty mars
                    You would have more credibility if you didn’t erupt so violently and emotionally. It seems to happen quite often. Why waste words, just a few are more cutting. Morrissey grows faster with this sort of manure.

                    • I get some enjoyment from using words/sentences – good for my scrabble too. I don’t think I erupted at all, from an unprovoked and nasty snide attack on me after I asked a question of Paul. I like the fact that some find me too ’emotional’ but I think it is too far and quite rude to call me violent 🙂 I do get that I swear a lot – sorry for those you don’t like swearing – they are just words…

            • xanthe 2.2.1.1.1.3

              exactly !

          • One Two 2.2.1.1.2

            The war and the lies are what’s “damaging and delusional”

            Highlighting and exposing the lies are necessary…until the day the lies and war and evil has been stopped

            No rest until that time comes!

        • Psycho Milt 2.2.1.2

          Just look at the bias served to us by our media.

          It’s kind of funny that you’re on here every day posting propaganda from regime sympathisers while also claiming to be outraged about “media bias.” Your peddling of propaganda on behalf of Russia, Iran and their client Assad is an object lesson in bias.

          As to the links you provide, the lack of civilian-casualty stories from Mosul isn’t a reflection of western media bias, it’s a reflection of the fact that the place is held by Da’Esh. It’s also a reflection of the fact that Mosul hasn’t been subjected to massive, indiscriminate aerial bombardment. Your and others’ efforts at false equivalence can’t alter those things.

          • Muttonbird 2.2.1.2.1

            As to the links you provide, the lack of civilian-casualty stories from Mosul isn’t a reflection of western media bias, it’s a reflection of the fact that the place is held by Da’Esh.

            Now you are defending ISIS. Amazing!

              • Muttonbird

                You claimed the lack of civilian casualties in Mosul is a reflection of the place being held by ISIS.

                • I claimed the lack of news reports in western media about civilian casualties in Mosul is a reflection of the place being held by Da’Esh. Not because there aren’t any civilian casualties (there’ll be plenty) but because the only stories Da’Esh is interested in supplying to western media are about the western prisoners they’re holding, the gruesome executions they’re carrying out, or the obnoxious bluster their spokesmen churn out.

            • Paul 2.2.1.2.1.2

              The US is supporting ISIS in Syria.

          • Paul 2.2.1.2.2

            Robert Fisk, Peter Oborn and Patrick Cockburn are not regime sympathisers nor do they peddle propaganda on behalf of Russia, Iran and their client Assad.

            The Washington Post, al Jazeera, the BBC and the Guardian do promote an agenda, just as Press TV, RTV and others promote the other side.

            • DH 2.2.1.2.2.1

              Paul get real mate. Robert Fisk lives in South Lebanon. His narrative on Syria is largely from the Hezbollah perspective, nothing wrong with that per se but to pretend the guy is some neutral observer is just asinine. Your sources are just as biased as those you criticise.

              • Paul

                You are aware of these three journalists impeccable credentials, aren’t you?
                Yet you believe the establishment puppets.
                Did you believe this one as well?

                • Paul

                  Another lie that was spread by the media to sell an an illegal war.
                  Did you believe this one?

                  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ErlDSJHRVMA

                  • reason

                    wayne mapp, bill english and Key were spreading the same lies and supporting war here in NZ …..

                    ” In the leadup to the Iraq war, National MPs were howling for New Zealand to back the US and get involved. Then Foreign Affairs spokesperson Wayne Mapp complained that we had questioned US intelligence on WMDs (I bet he feels stupid now) and demanded that we “stand firm with [our] traditional friends and allies” by supporting a second resolution authorising the war. The party complained that we had supported the international consensus of demanding solid evidence before invading another country. When the war began, Bill English demanded that NZ troops be sent immediately …. ”
                    http://norightturn.blogspot.co.nz/search?q=wayne+mapp%2Bwar

                    Mark Mitchell was part of the “mission accomplished” from that illegal war/invasion …. if any present mp in NZ has expertise on creating the conditions that empowers and grows groups like ISIS it would be him. ….

                    Despite Mitchells expertise in dog bites there is no link between him and abu ghraib https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abu_Ghraib_torture_and_prisoner_abuse#/media/File:AbuGhraib13.jpg

                    http://www.antiwar.com/news/?articleid=8560

                    I enjoy Pauls links and think he supports peace …. not war.

                    Thanks Paul ….. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uap0GwBYdBA

                • DH

                  Impeccable credentials? By whose standards Paul, their fan clubs?

                  I’m with Marty. Your inference that we’re all stupid and only you know the real truth is irritating.

                  • Paul

                    Good enough for you??

                    Patrick Oliver Cockburn ( born 5 March 1950) is an Irish journalist who has been a Middle East correspondent for The Independent. He has also worked as a correspondent in Moscow and Washington and is a frequent contributor to the London Review of Books.

                    He has written three books on Iraq’s recent history. He won the Martha Gellhorn Prize in 2005, the James Cameron Prize in 2006, the Orwell Prize for Journalism in 2009,Foreign Commentator of the Year (Editorial Intelligence Comment Awards 2013), Foreign Affairs Journalist of the Year (British Journalism Awards 2014), Foreign Reporter of the Year (The Press Awards For 2014). Seymour Hersh has described him as the “best western journalist at work in Iraq today.

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patrick_Cockburn

                  • Paul

                    Good enough for you??

                    Robert Fisk (born 12 July 1946) is an English writer and journalist from Maidstone, Kent. He has been Middle East correspondent intermittently since 1976 for various media; since 1989 he is correspondent for The Independent, primarily based in Beirut. Fisk holds more British and international journalism awards than any other foreign correspondent and has been voted British International Journalist of the Year seven times. He has published a number of books and reported on several wars and armed conflicts.

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Fisk

                    • DH

                      What’s your point Paul? So you go googling to find some references that back up your argument and quote only those that do. Wow, that’s novel.

                      In the process of said googling you would undoubtedly have been presented with numerous other references that questioned your precious ‘impeccable credentials’ but of course you blithely ignore all those and see only what you want to see.

                      Fisk is well known to have good relations with Hezbollah, they wouldn’t let him live there if he didn’t. On the Syrian issue the other side won’t talk much with him, they know who he is. Most of his sources will be from the Hezbollah/Assad perspective and his reporting on Syria will reflect that.

                    • Paul’s point is that he has an awesome argument from authority because the people he reads are trustworthy, objective experts in the field like, er, Eva Bartlett, which means Paul, by reading their stuff, is likewise brilliantly well-informed on the subject, whereas you are a mere dupe of western media bias. And also argument from authority is totally not a logical fallacy.

                  • Paul

                    And the third journalist in Assad and Russia’s camp…..

                    Peter Alan Oborne (born 11 July 1957) is a British journalist. He is the associate editor of The Spectator and former chief political commentator of The Daily Telegraph, from which he resigned in early 2015. He is author of The Rise of Political Lying and The Triumph of the Political Class, and, with Frances Weaver, the pamphlet Guilty Men.

                    Oborne is known for his acerbic commentary on the hypocrisy and apparent mendacity of contemporary politicians.

                    On 17 February 2015, Oborne resigned from The Daily Telegraph. In a letter posted to the online news website, open Democracy, Oborne criticised his former employer for the allegedly unscrupulous relationship between their editorial and commercial arms. Specifically, Oborne outlined how the paper would suppress negative stories and drop investigations into the HSBC bank, a major source of their advertising revenue, which, in his opinion, compromised their journalistic integrity calling it a “form of fraud on its readers”.

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Oborne

                  • Paul

                    Your inference that we’re all stupid and only you know the real truth is irritating.

                    Not stupid; just opinionated on a subject you are ill-informed about.

                    • DH

                      And you are ‘informed’ aye Paul. We’re all just gullible fools but you, well… you’re the worlds leading authority.

                  • Paul

                    I refer to their credentials.
                    Who are your sources so I can become more enlightened?

                    • DH

                      There’s nothing I can say that will enlighten you Paul. You’ve got your view and nothing will will shake you from it.

                      When two opposing sides present their own version of events the truth is usually somewhere in the middle. The message being sent to you here, Paul, is that’s how most neutral people likely see the Syrian debacle. Both sides are lying propagandists, both are truth tellers. You choose to take a side, stop assuming that everyone else does.

              • Yet you believe the establishment puppets.
                Did you believe this one as well?

                It’s also kind of funny that you can spot propaganda when it’s from people you don’t like, but are happy to publish propaganda and defend it as objective reporting when it’s from people you do like.

                • Paul

                  So what are your sources psycho? I shall genuinely look at them.
                  Your nom de plume seems apt given the violent outbursts I receive for publishing contrarian viewpoints to the establishment narrative. Any chance you could tone down the aggro?

                  • Absolutely. All that’s needed is for you to stop posting apologia for war crimes and then claiming the people who object to it are ill-informed.

                    As to my “sources,” I don’t have any impeccably-qualified authorities to spin logical fallacies from. I read things and watch the news, and am thereby no less ill-qualified to express opinions on this subject than you or Morrissey, who likewise read stuff and watch the news. None of us are experts on this subject, we’re people with opinions blathering on blog comments threads. If you could grasp that concept, you’d find fewer replies from me under your comments.

              • Morrissey

                You don’t have a clue what you’re talking about, DH.

                • Paul

                  Fisk and Cockburn – propagandists for Putin.
                  What a joke.

                  • garibaldi

                    Right on Paul and Morrissey. PM and DH are suckers for Western propaganda. Sad thing is, so are most Westerners. We have had nothing but bullshit since half way through WW2 from Western interests, and still these suckers fall for every word.
                    Obectivity seems to be an impossible ask.

              • swordfish

                DH “His narrative on Syria is largely from the Hezbollah perspective,”

                Ummm, no.

                If there’s been one aspect over the last 2 decades where Fisk has come in for criticism from progressive scholars/writers/analysts on Lebanon … it’s that he was too closely aligned with the Hariri-block and with his friend Walid Jumblatt. And that, hence, Fisk was far too predisposed to regurgitate some of the more banal US-Israeli propaganda specifically on Hezbollah.

                That’s a critique from experts who otherwise have a great deal of time for the high quality and integrity of his journalism.

                All of which suggests – as Paul and Morrissey have already pointed out – that you really don’t have too much of a clue.

                • DH

                  And you do of course… have too much of a clue that is.

                  Pompous git.

                  • swordfish

                    See my comment below, sweet pea.

                    You seem to be projecting.

                    • DH

                      Your comment below speaks for itself and says a lot about you. I’ll let that lie where it falls, I don’t need to respond to it.

                  • Morrissey

                    As anyone who has visited The Standard regularly over the last five years or so could tell you, actually, yes, swordfish does know what he’s talking about when it comes to Palestine, Israel, Lebanon and Syria.

                    And, as is painfully obvious, you know next to nothing.

            • swordfish 2.2.1.2.2.2

              Although I’m all for robust debate, I’m not sure I’d even bother with these Clintonistas, Paul. They’re a smug, preening, pompous little band of Stewie Griffins. Not a great deal of honesty, integrity or backbone. (you’ll look in vain for any critique of US foreign policy, for instance. Not in their interests. Where the New York Times and Washington Post go … they quickly follow – as fast as their little legs will carry them)

              All you’re ever gonna get from these wonderfully droll wannabe hipsters are increasingly desperate attempts at erudite little bon mots. Such are the unquenchable depths of their self-delight.

  3. Carolyn_nth 3

    An interesting article by Danyl McLaughlan – about how John Key’s expertise in finance trading gave him an understanding of how to play other complex systems – like politics – and “win” at the “game”. Means he was a conservative who favoured incremental change, but failed to deal with the most pressing issues facing the country.

    He was a conservative who believed in incremental improvements rather than radical reform, and if that happened to benefit him and his caucus, and the parties membership and donor-class… well, that’s just politics, right?

    This isn’t the worst way you can govern a country, as I suspect the various western democracies voting radical authoritarians into power are about to find out. But it did mean that most of the serious problems facing New Zealand, which could only be addressed by large-scale reform, never got fixed under his watch.

    It’s frustrating, given Key’s obvious political genius, that he only addressed it to winning at the superficial elements of politics: raising money, winning elections, mocking the opposition as it self-destructed, getting good coverage, being popular. Understanding the game and then beating it. To me the most quintessential Key policy is his reform of the Emissions Trading Scheme: Key and his Trade Minister found a brilliant way to rort the international carbon trading system, buying hundreds of millions of dollars of quasi-legal Russian and Ukrainian carbon credits. It was an ingenious way to prevent New Zealand from having to reduce our carbon emissions, which would have lead to all sorts of reforms and costs that might have compromised Key’s popularity.

    It may not be the absolute worst way to run a country – but that’s a very low bar. It certainly hasn’t helped the country, and it’s been very bad for the least well-off.

    • Pat 3.1

      “To me the most quintessential Key policy is his reform of the Emissions Trading Scheme: Key and his Trade Minister found a brilliant way to rort the international carbon trading system, buying hundreds of millions of dollars of quasi-legal Russian and Ukrainian carbon credits. It was an ingenious way to prevent New Zealand from having to reduce our carbon emissions, which would have lead to all sorts of reforms and costs that might have compromised Key’s popularity.”

      “brilliant, rort,ingenious?…..that says more about the author than it does about Key……the entire article needs to read with that as its foundation.

      • Carolyn_nth 3.1.1

        Good point. yes. I do feel a uncomfortable about the element of worshiping Key’s (alleged) genius.

    • saveNZ 3.2

      Like any day trader, he maximised short term profits (for himself and cronies) and left social destruction for others to clean up ( housing, immigration, super, tax havens, debt levels, etc). It does not require huge skills to asset strip a country over 8 years, but it does require skills to avoid detection and deflect blame).

      I think he will go down as one of the worst PM’s we have ever had, once the books get opened. He’s a Muldoon – leaving a big mess for others.

      • gsays 3.2.1

        hmm.., at least muldoon left a bit of a legacy.
        the hydro electric dams.

        good point about the day trader.

    • Olwyn 3.3

      It seems worth comparing McLaughlan’s It may not be the absolute worst way to run a country – but that’s a very low bar. It certainly hasn’t helped the country, and it’s been very bad for the least well-off. with Gould’s …the battle was not one of personality politics, but real politics…The personality was merely the means by which a deadly serious re-making of New Zealand – along ideological lines – was being undertaken.

      By McLaughlin’s account, Key focused on winning and paid scant attention to the plight of the least well off. By Gould’s account he was a man on a mission who employed a winning strategy. I find Gould’s account the more plausible. When people are being kicked out of houses for fabricated reasons, and being plunged into huge debts that they will never be able to pay, and the architects of that scheme are elevated as Key’s anointed heirs, then it all looks more deliberate than accidental. In fact it is almost worth asking them if they hope, following in the footsteps of nineteenth century colonists, that the least wealthy 20-30% will either bugger off or gradually die out. It is what their actions suggest.

      Edit: I should also have mentioned our overflowing prison population.

      • Carolyn_nth 3.3.1

        Agreed. Very good contrast and analysis.

      • Jenny Kirk 3.3.2

        I found Gould’s account more realistic too, Olwyn. Key was parachuted in to do a job (for unknown others), he’s done it, and he’s flown out again – leaving an exploited demoralised country behind him.

      • Karen 3.3.3

        I agree, Olwyn – Gould’s analysis seems more accurate than Mclauchlan’s.
        I also think Giovanni’s Tiso’s piece is very good.

        https://overland.org.au/2016/12/the-man-without-a-legacy/

        • Olwyn 3.3.3.1

          Yes I read that too and thought it was very good; very insightful.

        • Carolyn_nth 3.3.3.2

          This new article by Wayne Hope is also very good – on the myths the MSM promotes about John Key.

          If the appearances of a leader are taken on trust by influential commentators and the general populace, then mythology will prevail. History will be fabricated rather than examined. The three widely propagated myths about John Key are; that he was not really ideological, he occupied the political centre and that he left no legacy.

  4. Puckish Rogue 4

    Its my last day of work for the year so might even be getting an early knock off so hopefully everyone has a good a Christmas as I’m going to or preferably even better!

    Laters

  5. Molly 5

    Merry Christmas PR.

    You are often the mustard on an otherwise great sandwich, (with a tendency towards vinegar) but sour taste and all, there is sometimes a moment when you provide the perfect note.

    For that reason, (and not for the boasting of early holidays, you just can’t help yourself can you?) – enjoy your break.

  6. Hey, Pucky – I was sequestered in the council chamber yesterday and not free to play the blogs, so missed your Christmas message and the opportunity to give you a ribbing. Have a good break, play fair and be kind to your people. Spend some time too, reflecting on aspects of your personality that are holding you back; your tendency to adore duplicitous authority figures, your habit of repeating nonsense ad nauseum, that sort of thing 🙂
    In any case, see you in the New Year, by which time you’ll have realised what has happened and how parlous National’s position post-Key and you’ll have lost your puckiness, but there’ll still be a place here for you, in your depleted state.
    Merry Christmas, Puck.

    • Puckish Rogue 7.1

      “I was sequestered in the council chamber yesterday ”

      Well that doesn’t sound enjoyable at all

      I’ll think about what you said, but no promises 🙂

      Merry Christmas to you and everyone else

  7. Cinny 8

    Go away Max, your dad has, time for you to do the same. If you really have let go of your ego, what’s with this professionally filmed self promotion? NZ is over it, go and promote yourself in Hawaii.

    As for the Herald, wtf are you promoting? A washed up ex PM’s attention seeking son, jeepers you must be desperate for stories

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/entertainment/news/article.cfm?c_id=1501119&objectid=11768085

  8. Morrissey 9

    “Hidden due to low comment rating.”
    How Kiwiblog’s sensitive souls are spared having to read my posts.

    Yesterday (Thursday 15/12/16) I achieved some kind of record over on Kiwiblog. Seven—-count ’em, SEVEN—of my posts on just one discussion thread were accorded the grim accolade of “Hidden due to low comment rating.” This stern notice of exclusion is followed by the invitation: “Click here to see”, which rather defeats the purpose.

    Now, I fancy myself as a bit of an amateur psychologist, and I reckon that’s the approximate equivalent to the old “sealed section” that magazines like Cleo used to entice readers back when people used to read magazines.

    What do Standardistas think about this?

    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2016/12/hosking_on_the_pike_protesters.html/comment-page-1#comment-1837884

    • Cinny 9.1

      ‘hidden due to low comment rating’ I consider that to be their form of censorship, used when someone does not fall into line with the Kiwiblog agenda.

    • David C 9.2

      you have a long way to go to achieve the level of opprobrium generated by Penny Bright on KB.

      • Morrissey 9.2.1

        A lot of the brutal comments directed at her are simply because she’s a woman.

        • ropata 9.2.1.1

          That won’t bother her, PB just goes around the blogs to spam her latest 3000 word missive & never follows up

        • David C 9.2.1.2

          The brutal comments are directed at her because she steals from ratepayers and has zero respect for the law.

          • Morrissey 9.2.1.2.1

            Ha! The posters on Kiwiblog are currently lionizing one Bill English, who brazenly stole money from taxpayers in a notorious housing rort [1] which would have driven anyone with a conscience to resign in disgrace.

            The rest of the time they spend praising one John Key, whose sub-zero respect for the law was laid bare in Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics. [2]

            Yet YOU claim that these moral paragons routinely heap the vilest personal abuse on a woman because they respect the law. Do you realise the irony of what you are saying?

            [1] http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/2711246/Bill-English-defends-taxpayer-cash-for-house

            [2] https://dirtypoliticsnz.com/

            • Paul 9.2.1.2.1.1

              There’s no answer that David C can give to that.
              Except I will stop trolling on this site.

              • Stunned Mullet

                Great to know you’ll be stopping your trolling on this site Paul.

              • Morrissey

                Paul, I’m afraid that poor “David C” is akin to a Samantha Power speech—i.e., completely devoid of any sense of the absurd.

          • Penny Bright 9.2.1.2.2

            Really?

            I have defended my lawful rights as a citizen to find out exactly where ratepayers and citizens’ public monies are being spent on private sector consultants and contractors.

            Feel rather vindicated, following the unprecedented verdict last Friday (9 December 2016 – International Anti-Corruption Day) in the Auckland High Court, by Justice Sally Fitzgerald, of bribery and corruption charges against a senior Auckland Transport manager and contractor.

            The bribes over a 7 year period between those two amounted to $1.2 million.

            (Sentencing will be on 22 February 2017).

            I predict a ‘blue collar’ sentence for these two ‘white collar’ criminals.

            That this is the ‘tip of the iceberg’ regarding corruption in the NZ roading industry, is the subject of a five page investigative article in today’s NBR (print version).

            Penny Bright

            ‘Anti-privatisation / anti-corruption Public Watchdog’.

            • ropata 9.2.1.2.2.1

              Were you involved in the case?

              • Penny Bright

                I was not directly involved in the SFO prosecution of the corrupt contractor and corrupt Auckland Transport senior manager.

                However, I have been involved now for some years ‘blowing the whistle’ and ‘making a fuss’ against the lack of transparency in the spending of public monies on private sector consultants and contractors.

                Penny Bright

                ‘Anti-privatisation / anti-corruption Public Watchdog’.

    • seems they rate you the same as many here – ‘oh dear – ego under attack – must think of pompous pretend intelligent reply’ – you’ve been lambasted here by some fine fellows and fellowesses over the years for inaccurate, nay made up ‘transcripts’ yet that water off your duck back is yellowish – none so blind eh morrie the minor.

    • What do Standardistas think about this?

      About what? That lots of Kiwiblog’s commenters don’t like you? That seems to be the standard reason for down-ticking a comment over there. Shouldn’t you be pleased rather than offended that the Angry White Men of Kiwiblog don’t like your comments?

      • Morrissey 9.4.1

        Shouldn’t you be pleased rather than offended that the Angry White Men of Kiwiblog don’t like your comments?

        Some of my posts garner a lot of upticks. The posters there are not as monolithic as you appear to think they are. It all depends on what I post up.

        • Stunned mullet 9.4.1.1

          “Some of my posts garner a lot of upticks.”

          How many sock puppets are you running these days Moz ?

          • Morrissey 9.4.1.1.1

            I’m afraid that since I was banned from the Daisycutter Sports Inc. following the 2005 Christmas party, my access to the young women and men who used to back me up so vociferously on nz.general and rec.sport.rugby.union has pretty much dried up.

            Some people think that I’ve created the hapless “Psycho Milt” as a scapegoat sock puppet, but I can assure you that he puts those idiotic words up there by himself.

  9. Muttonbird 10

    More evidence the current government policy is hurting the children of Auckland voters.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/320543/housing-costs,-traffic-blamed-for-worsening-akl-teacher-shortage

    I think the government is losing Auckland in a big way and the opposition really needs to make sure voters know there is an alternative. One of governance and planning rather than a wild west free for all.

    • Paul 10.1

      Even the wealthy are getting miffed as they start to miss their air flights.

      • Muttonbird 10.1.1

        Watch out when little Benjamin’s private school can’t find a teacher.

        • whateva next? 10.1.1.1

          or no-one to serve the latte

          • ropata 10.1.1.1.1

            Nah, just import 1000 baristas from Bangladesh @ 10c /hour. That’s how we do “business” in NZ

            • Muttonbird 10.1.1.1.1.1

              Yep. The ministry, which have denied there is a problem, has 500 teachers from England ready to go, apparently.

              Where are they going to live? How are they going to get to work?

              I can guarantee you those mythical 500 teachers from England will be shocked by the state of transport infrastructure and housing if they ever make it to Auckland.

              National has lost the battle for Auckland.

        • repateet 10.1.1.2

          Charter school?

  10. Well what an end to the year in NZ politics. key gone, gnat mps gone, other mps gone, english and the fakewestieladderpuller in. Whew!!! I am LOVING it. Meanwhile the shit the system (and it’s little helpers) do, continues and the disadvantaged and less able continue to get shat on from a great height.

    I sense a change in the centre of balance – I’m feeling a movement beginning (sorry potty humour).

    Those who support left values are going to have to dig deep next year to take advantage of these changes. The pressure must be maintained and increased. The dumbarse gnat ministers must be hounded and continually asked the hard questions and their lies scrutinised and illuminated.

    For left activists like me there are some very big decisions to make.

    I can’t support Mana if they go with The MP
    I can’t voter for labour or the Greens while they target the mythical middle
    I will not support the agenda of morgan or winnie
    The right are going down the gurgler and I don’t know who my precious vote will be going to to keep them going down.

    Bring on the New Year – I’ll keep fighting the fight for the disadvantaged and those who struggle within our society and I’ll do it with or without a political party.

    • Cinny 11.1

      “Bring on the New Year – I’ll keep fighting the fight for the disadvantaged and those who struggle within our society and I’ll do it with or without a political party.”

      Woot woot !!! Kudos bro 😀

    • Jenny Kirk 11.2

      You haven’t been interpreting Andrew Little’s comments about “the mythical middle” correctly, marty mars. He has said that wherever he goes people he talks to about their problems – housing, jobs, health, education – all consider themselves “middle NZ” – so its a very broad concept, not a narrow swinging vote in the centre of the left-right divide.

      • marty mars 11.2.1

        perhaps, but I think I have heard and listened to them pretty well and my analysis is accurate

      • Carolyn_nth 11.2.2

        If it’s such a broad concept, why is it called “middle”? – this term seems to me to be derived from the long term US Democrat focus on the “middle class” – because, apparently no-one considers themselves working class or under class any more.

        But where did that idea come from? – seems to me it’s the result of neoliberal propaganda, denying the existence or significance of the struggling working class and precariat.

        Basically, it’s colluding with right wing spin. It becomes circular. Everyone considers themselves “middle” because that is what the media and third way pollies have been telling them for a couple of decades. It’s time to break the cycle.

    • Rosemary McDonald 11.3

      “I can’t support Mana if they go with The MP
      I can’t voter for labour or the Greens while they target the mythical middle
      I will not support the agenda of morgan or winnie
      The right are going down the gurgler and I don’t know who my precious vote will be going to to keep them going down.”

      I’m with you on all four points there marty mars…and I’ve been accused of setting too high a standard…demanding an unreasonable level of integrity from the recipients of my two votes.

      With the departure of Catherine Delahunty from the GP I fear that party is heading irretrievably almost centre right…when Jan Logie hands in her notice…

      Oh well.

      On the upside, next winter’s firewood is just about stacked under cover, the two water tanks are full to overflowing and the septic tank and it’s drainage field are still functioning as they ought. All we have to sort out is a generator(or alternate to grid power supply) so we can pump the water from our tanks and keep the freezer frozen and we’ll be right when the shit hits the fan.

  11. saveNZ 12

    Australian mum’s hilarious response to debt letter for a whopping 2 cents

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=11767905

    Sadly in NZ it is more likely to be 62,400 per year for a motel room, than 2 cents being demanded.

    • Jenny Kirk 12.1

      love it, saveNZ !

    • ropata 12.2

      I got a nasty letter from the Justice Dept this week, demanding $130 and if I didn’t pay up I would be summoned to Court or arrested.

      Apparently I got a traffic fine back in July but the cops had been sending mail to the wrong address the whole time. FFS!

      • saveNZ 12.2.1

        I got a super nasty letter when I was a student, from ANZ bank, demanding I pay my $1000 interest free overdraft back even though I was still a student. Anyway I got rid of my ANZ bank account overdraft, closed my account and never returned to them and just the other day got an unsolicited letter from ANZ asking for my business again, which I will not be taking up.

        Also have huge nightmare when someone used my identity to police for a fine, but after a lot of paperwork, declarations and huge amount of work, managed to prove I was overseas and could not have done it!

        • ropata 12.2.1.1

          Scary shit — identity theft is a handy trick to get the cops off your back I guess.
          (Also a massive growth industry)

          • saveNZ 12.2.1.1.1

            Basically the burden of proof seems to be on you to prove you don’t owe the money not the other way around!

  12. Muttonbird 13

    The foul-mouthed, tittie-ogling quitter has left the building.

    Great Christmas present for decent people across New Zealand.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/tv-radio/87631676/paul-henrys-final-tv3-breakfast-show-this-is-it

    There are quite a few right wingers of questionable character quitting of late.

    • Cinny 13.1

      Don’t think I’ve ever seen a mass exodus of right wingers from NZ like this before.

      No tinfoil hat required to sense that something just doesn’t sit well, could the excuse of 2016 be ‘family reasons’?

      • Carolyn_nth 13.1.1

        Yes. It is a curious phenomenon. And puzzling. Not sure what to make of it.

        • Muttonbird 13.1.1.1

          Very generally, with Key it’s a case of the golden times being over and the hard work was ahead – he couldn’t face the hard work.

          With Henry, I just think he couldn’t stand being the person he is. He genuinely hates himself for the things he feels he has to say to maintain popularity.

          • Carolyn_nth 13.1.1.1.1

            I don’t have any understanding of Henry as I tend to avoid his shows.

            But surely he wouldn’t say much of what he says if he didn’t believe it?

            • Muttonbird 13.1.1.1.1.1

              He believed it, just that he hated himself for having to say it for money. He banged on about NZ being paradise but then tore strips off the most vulnerable citizens in that paradise. Unconscionable really.

              His talk was pub talk and while pub talk is fine, it is only fine in a pub, if you know what I mean.

  13. Cinny 14

    Just wondering… how much has Bridges spent on luring Oil Barons here to drill? Looks like that was a waste of money.

    Maybe the Oil Barons realise that there will be a change of government here very soon and as a result don’t want to invest? Suits me.

    Hey Government, instead of shelling out who knows how much to entertain oil giants, how about… funding science to get the whole country on free energy? Here’s an idea, how about an electric car manufacturing plant? Maybe a solar panel production factory? Hotels, helicopters and caviar instead with our tax dollars huh?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/87614697/only-a-fraction-of-new-zealands-oil-territory-sells-in-block-offer-2016

  14. Carolyn_nth 15

    Labour Party reshuffle announced by Little.

    “I am underlining how important this is by creating the New Economy portfolio. Labour is committed to growing wealth in the economy through greater innovation and productivity.”

    In other changes Michael Wood will be the spokesperson for Consumer Affairs, Ethnic Communities and Revenue.

    Chris Hipkins adds all the associate delegations of Tertiary Education held by David Cunliffe to his overall Education duties.

    “Education is a crucial area for Labour because of the funding freeze on schools and declining performance, and we’ll be increasing pressure on the Government on this. Chris will be focusing all his energies on this important area and so will be stepping down from the Senior Whip role. I will be nominating Kris Faafoi to be the new Senior Whip with the vote taking place at the first Caucus of 2017. Chris will retain the Shadow Leader of the House role.”

    David Parker also takes over Foreign Affairs from David Shearer. Stuart Nash gains State Owned Enterprises and will also be the new spokesperson for Innovation and Science, and Research and Development.

    Iain Lees-Galloway will be the new Defence spokesperson. Dr Megan Woods adds State Services to her duties while Clare Curran takes over ICT and moves into the Shadow Cabinet.

  15. greywarshark 16

    On the Fifth day of Christmas – On Friendship.

    Friends – they are kind to each other’s hopes,
    they cherish each other’s dreams.
    Henry David Thoreau

    • marty mars 16.1

      Nice – I love the word cherish

      “to love, protect, and care for someone or something that is important to you”
      http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/cherish

      and in your quote above cherish ‘something that is important to another’ – very beautiful to be able to do that and be true to that.

      • greywarshark 16.1.1

        maui
        What about going down to see Robert Guyton? He is more of a people person than I think Thoreau was. Our very own ‘wild man’. I think he would laugh at that, seemingly good-natured.

        And marty mars
        You are right about cherish. It is a word that hasn’t been spoiled by some dissonance. Some words seem to be 3D I think, stand clear of the page.

    • mauī 16.2

      Interesting guy Thoreau. Who doesn’t want to go and live in the woods with simplicity and solitude for a while. I have to read Walden sometime too.

  16. Some stories not making the news

    “We Miskitu women have a special relationship with our land – that sacred space that cannot be sold or divided up. For Indigenous People, land is community. It is living in harmony with Mother Earth. Our collective identity and sense of belonging is embedded in the land and so too our legal, political, economic and social systems.
    And it is not just Miskitu women. Indigenous women all over the world have this special relationship with land and territory. We are transmitters of knowledge, persevering our cultures, systems and the ways our Indigenous Nations and Peoples organize.”

    https://intercontinentalcry.org/access-land-indigenous-women-essential-condition-eradicating-gender-violence/

    “Recently, members of the Yaqui tribe in Loma de Bácum won a moratorium against the construction of the pipeline. According to local media, however, Mexican authorities have announced that pipeline construction will continue because “one community” cannot stop “a project that will benefit future generations.””

    https://intercontinentalcry.org/mexico-moves-ahead-controversial-pipeline-indigenous-land-despite-moratorium/

    “The United Nations has condemned the wave of violence and observed that “75% of the homicide victims were carrying out their activities in rural environments, and that the methods of the killings and assassination attempts show a high level of sophistication to conceal the intellectual authors.”
    Responsibility for many of the attacks has been claimed, however, by paramilitary groups including the Aguilas Negras (Black Eagles), the Rastrojos, and the Urabeños; groups that developed out of the right-wing paramilitary Self-Defence Forces (AUC) following their partial demobilisation between 2003-2006.”

    https://intercontinentalcry.org/black-eagles-and-black-windows/

    “All over the world today, Indigenous Peoples are confronting the destructive practices of industry—leading the charge against climate change while defending the lakes, forests and food systems that all of us depend on. At the same time, they are blocking governments from weakening basic rights and freedoms and turning to the courts of the world to correct over 500 years of historical wrongs. And all the while, Indigenous Peoples are breathing new life into the biocultural legacies that have the potential to sustain the entire human race until the sun goes nova.”

    https://intercontinentalcry.org/15-indigenous-struggles-need-know/

    If you want to support indigenous struggles that are happening right now, all around the world, go to Intercontinentalcry.org – the wealth of information there is unsurpassed, the depth of the struggles is immediate, and the knowledge that NOW is just a continuation of THEN – the struggles for indigenous peoples against the juggernaut are enduring and ongoing and have been for generations.

  17. ropata 18

    Beautiful review of Bob Dylan’s career, and the song he chose in lieu of a Nobel Prize acceptance speech (for literature)

    https://www.theautomaticearth.com/2016/12/a-dozen-dead-oceans/

    If only the early hippies had listened to that 1962 song, A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall. Because it is at times apocalyptic, it paints visions of hell and despair (a dozen dead oceans), certainly not love and happiness. How did all of the new born love generation miss that? Nor was that the only one of his early songs, and it’s almost eery to see how many Dylan songs everyone knows that were written in just a few years time in the early 60s when he was just out of his teen years.

    Robert Zimmerman always knew where he came from, but even more where his music came from. And he never stopped paying his respects.

    Like the 7 year older Leonard Cohen, bless his soul, who I think should have gotten the Nobel before Dylan, just so Bob could have gotten it seven years later, Dylan’s songs are replete with images sourced from mythology and biblical texts. Both ‘recycle’ images that Carl Jung would have said are engraved in our minds.

    Oh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son?
    Oh, where have you been, my darling young one?
    I’ve stumbled on the side of twelve misty mountains
    I’ve walked and I’ve crawled on six crooked highways

    I’ve stepped in the middle of seven sad forests
    I’ve been out in front of a dozen dead oceans
    I’ve been ten thousand miles in the mouth of a graveyard

    And it’s a hard, and it’s a hard, it’s a hard, and it’s a hard
    And it’s a hard rain’s a-gonna fall

    • Rosemary McDonald 18.1

      “And what’ll you do now, my blue-eyed son?
      And what’ll you do now, my darling young one?
      I’m a-goin’ back out ‘fore the rain starts a-fallin’
      I’ll walk to the depths of the deepest black forest
      Where the people are many and their hands are all empty
      Where the pellets of poison are flooding their waters
      Where the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prison
      And the executioner’s face is always well hidden
      Where hunger is ugly, where souls are forgotten
      Where black is the color, where none is the number
      And I’ll tell it and think it and speak it and breathe it…”

    • Carolyn_nth 18.2

      I’m one of the hippy generation that did pay attention to songs like that – and it just wasn’t about a potential nuclear mutual destruction. I think many others also paid attention to such songs.

      And it is even more relevant now – good choice of song.

      It’s just that such songs got swamped with the shifts from above, in right wing propaganda, the video revolution, etc, along with the consumerist mantras.

      Many of us protested at the time…. but still the neoliberal tanks rolled all over everywhere.

      • Poission 18.2.1

        from the dreamtime.

        • Rosemary McDonald 18.2.1.1

          God, talk about being slung back in time! We used to sing this at school…in the 60s in the UK and here in the 70s.

          You know…being post Vietnam…we kinda hoped, like , you know, it might come true.

  18. repateet 19

    I won’t read it but I see a Herald headline about young Keydashian. His father gradually being out of a permanent presence in the headlines certainly won’t stop his regular appearances.

    He is of no more importance than any other citizen. If he is being foisted on me for crap, nothing reasons and events it is fair to consider I am being treated with contempt. I will take that as the okay to reciprocate.

  19. Muttonbird 20

    It’s all coming out in the wash. Those real estate companies which have enriched the lives of a select few National party voters have been found to be corrupt.

    Much like National party voters themselves.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11768413

    Still, between 4 companies, 5% commission on the average Auckland house equals just 50 houses each sold to pay for this fine. A slap on the hand with a wet bus ticket.

    Remember it is the National government under which these people are conducting their corrupt business practice.

    • Cinny 20.1

      Allo allo ‘allo… I see a national party donator there.. old Garth Barfoot.

      “Justice Paul Heath today ordered Barfoot & Thompson to pay $2.575 million, Harcourts $2.575m, LJ Hooker $2.475m and Ray White $2.2m.

      Bayleys was also subject to the agreement but that case was settled earlier this year after the firm agreed to pay a $2.2m penalty.”

      More to follow says the Herald….

      Maybe Nick Smith will resign for family reasons lololololoz how magical would that be?

    • ropata 20.2

      They defrauded TradeMe and passed fee increases on to buyers. Nice people in that industry. One bunch of ticket clippers ripping off another. I wonder if the affected buyers get refunded from any of those penalties?

      Time to nationalise the whole real estate industry, it’s a bloated parasite

  20. Rosemary McDonald 22

    I spotted this….http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/12/accelerates-troop-deployment-poland-baltics-161214165133547.html the other night…and thought, ho hum,

    and now this….http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11768380 “Swedish towns told to ‘make preparations regarding the threat of war and conflict’ with Russia”

    Fake news?

    Its getting a bit tight in here….

  21. Muttonbird 23

    Fascinating. This sort of behaviour is something we in New Zealand thought happened in new and third world countries. Yet under their government police corruption is happening right under our noses!

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/320595/corrupt-cop-convinced-driver-to-hand-over-cash

  22. Paul 24

    John Campbell on Checkpoint is ferocious on housing today.

    • Muttonbird 24.1

      It will be an election issue next year. The New Nats refuse to do anything about it and this opens the door for the opposition to really canvas affected voters like they did in Mt Roskill.

      • ropata 24.1.1

        Housing story starts at 12:20 in the above RNZ clip

        • Muttonbird 24.1.1.1

          Incredible. Not one person from authority fronted on this issue. As I said on another thread, Bennett and co will not have Paul Henry to stroke them next year. Bill’s not a great fit on The Rock, or More FM, so perhaps they’ll not show up anywhere???

      • ropata 24.1.2

        48:50 class action against insurance companies dodging earthquake payouts

    • Paul 24.2

      Sadly follows it up with a promotion for ISIS by repeating BBC propaganda.

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