Open mike 18/11/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:34 am, November 18th, 2013 - 200 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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

Step right up to the mike …

200 comments on “Open mike 18/11/2013 ”

  1. Paul 1

    “Climate change pledges: rich nations face fury over moves to renege
    Typhoon Haiyan raises fear over global warming threat as Philippines leads attack on eve of key talks.”

    “Yeb Sano, the Philippines’ lead negotiator at the UN climate change summit being held this weekend in Warsaw, spoke of a major breakdown in relations overshadowing the crucial talks, which are due to pave the way for a 2015 deal to bring down global emissions.

    The diplomat, on the sixth day of a hunger strike in solidarity for those affected by Haiyan, including his own family, told the Observer: “We are very concerned. Public announcements from some countries about lowering targets are not conducive to building trust. We must acknowledge the new climate reality and put forward a new system to help us manage the risks and deal with the losses to which we cannot adjust.”

    Munjurul Hannan Khan, representing the world’s 47 least affluent countries, said: “They are behaving irrationally and unacceptably. The way they are talking to the most vulnerable countries is not acceptable. Today the poor are suffering from climate change. But tomorrow the rich countries will be. It starts with us but it goes to them.”

    Recent decisions by the governments of Australia, Japan and Canada to downgrade their efforts over climate change have caused panic among those states most affected by global warming, who fear others will follow as they rearrange their priorities during the downturn.”

    You could add New Zealand to that list.

    • Rogue Trooper 1.1

      an informative post Paul.
      “China’s lead negotiator at the Warsaw talks, Su Wei, said “I do not have any words to describe my dismay at Japan’s decision”.
      Blown Away he was.

  2. Red Rosa 2

    Just another in the string of disgraceful recent police incidents, for which Tolley needs to be held accountable.

    • miravox 2.1

      MorePolice behaving badly

      Despite being headlined as Police cleared of assault, They weren’t “cleared of assault” they were discharged without conviction after the judge found the trespass and arrest constituted assault.

      How did they end up in court? The woman had privately prosecuted them.

      I wonder if they were cleared under police complaints processes first.

      • felix 2.1.1

        Two male cops illegally force their way into a woman’s bedroom and assault her, the judge agrees that they’re guilty of assault and trespass yet doesn’t convict them?

        W. T. F. F.

        I’ve said this before. Until the system actually punishes individual police officers who break the law, the NZ Police as an institution will continue to allow individual officers to rob, beat, rape and torture at will.

        No consequences, no change.

        • Lanthanide

          It was felt the consequences would severely outweigh the seriousness of the offending.

          I think they should have been convicted but not necessarily received any further punishment. The conviction should then be treated as equally as any other assault conviction would, no special “oh but it wasn’t really assault” treatment by the cops.

          • felix

            Why do you make these arbitrary distinctions?

            If you really think – as you say you do – that it should be treated like any other assault, then leave it at that and let it be treated like any other assault.

            Except it’s not, it’s actually far more serious than that. This was a home invasion, which is supposed to mean more severe penalties for the concurrent offenses, not less.

            • Lanthanide

              So here’s the story:

              The obvious distinction in this case is that the police were not invading her house to steal or deliberately set out to hurt her, so comparing their actions to a standard “home invasion” is over the top.

              They also sought advice from a superior officer as to what they should be doing. Turns out they were given incorrect advice. It’s difficult to know what was actually said in that conversation (the Radio NZ report certainly doesn’t have any details) so it’s hard to know whose fault the resultant situation was.

              Note also that they had to pay $7,000 in reparation and $8,000 in court costs.

              So, on balance, I think they should have been given an assault conviction, but no further punishment over what they had.

              • felix

                The obvious distinction in this case is that the police were not invading her house to steal or deliberately set out to hurt her, so comparing their actions to a standard “home invasion” is over the top.

                That’s just more of your arbitrary delineation though. Who cares why they invaded her home? The facts show that they did, and it was illegal, and during the invasion they committed a further crime of assault.

                Those are very, very serious offenses, one compounding the other.

                Three further things to consider:

                1. Ignorance of the law is never an excuse.

                2. “Just following orders” is never an excuse.

                3. The fact that these crimes were committed by police officers charged with upholding the law makes them more serious, not less.

                • Lanthanide

                  “That’s just more of your arbitrary delineation though. Who cares why they invaded her home? The facts show that they did, and it was illegal, and during the invasion they committed a further crime of assault.”

                  The criminal justice system cares. That’s why we have “murder” and “manslaughter”, because it all depends on the motive. That’s also why different people being convicted for the same crime can receive different sentences – because of the motives and situations involved. Really I would have thought that was pretty trivial and obvious, but I guess not.

                  In this case the judge decided that the mitigating circumstances warranted no conviction at all. I don’t agree with that – they should have been convicted, just not penalised with anything stiffer than what they had. They plead guilty to committing a crime, everyone agrees a crime happened, they should be convicted for that crime.

                  Also in this specific case, I would suggest that they thought they were just doing their job, for whatever reason. Clearly they needed better training so that they would know what they were doing was wrong (this is what the prosecuting lawyer said). It seems a bit unfair to penalise particular individuals for what is a failing of their employer.

                  • felix

                    “They plead guilty to committing a crime, everyone agrees a crime happened, they should be convicted for that crime.”

                    I agree entirely with this statement.

                    As to the difference between murder and manslaughter, that’s a distinction between intending to kill or not. It’s not so much to do with why you hit someone with a shovel, but whether you meant to hit them hard enough to kill them.

                    In this instance I don’t think anyone is arguing that they didn’t intend to break into the woman’s house while she was inside. That was their intent. That makes it a home invasion. It’s not reasonable to argue that they broke in accidentally, that they didn’t mean to invade her home.

                    “Clearly they needed better training so that they would know what they were doing was wrong (this is what the prosecuting lawyer said). It seems a bit unfair to penalise particular individuals for what is a failing of their employer.”

                    That may well be the case, but that’s another matter between them and their employer. It doesn’t alter the assailant/victim relationship between them and the woman they attacked.

                    She is not responsible for their lack of training. Why should she bear the brunt of the failings of the institution? Why should the crime against her go unpunished and her attackers remain unconvicted?

                    Following orders is no excuse. Ignorance of the law is no excuse. They should be convicted, punished, and if they feel they have a case against their trainers or employers they should take up that case.

                    But that does not alter the fact that they committed crimes against society and should be held to account.

                    • Lanthanide

                      “She is not responsible for their lack of training. Why should she bear the brunt of the failings of the institution? Why should the crime against her go unpunished and her attackers remain unconvicted?”

                      I agree, they should be convicted. You, however, are saying they need to be punished. How does them being punished, more than they have been, help her in any way?

                      “Following orders is no excuse. Ignorance of the law is no excuse. They should be convicted, punished, and if they feel they have a case against their trainers or employers they should take up that case.”

                      I think the case is not as black and white as you are portraying. Because this means anyone who is trained to do something, who carries it out, and is later found out to be breaking the law, should be convicted and have maximum penalties thrown at them, no matter how much at fault their employer was.

                      “But that does not alter the fact that they committed crimes against society and should be held to account.”

                      Yes, they should be held to account, there’s no disagreement on that point. All we’re really disagreeing on here is to what extent they need to be held to account. You seem to want to throw the book at them; on the other hand the judge thought a fine was sufficient.

                    • McFlock

                      They were held to account.

                      I think you’re on the wrong track. The courts don’t automatically convict or apply the maximum sentence (notwithstanding the SS folks’ wishes).

                      The punishment is supposed to fit the crime, and the crime includes the level of intent, planning, colour of right, the circumstances of the act, and the effort to which the offender went to determining the appropriate course of action at the time. The judge then balances their sentencing options against the level of punishment that would likely occur as a result of those options.

                      I think an assault conviction could jeopardise the career of a sworn frontline police officer. Maybe the judge felt that this would be too high a penalty for the facts of the case. The damages cost seems higher than I usually read, so maybe they made a tradeoff there.

                    • felix

                      Actually according to the facts of the case they should be facing charges of aggravated kidnapping.

                      I think you are both minimising the seriousness of the offending. Imagine a pair of men armed with (at the very least) sticks and chemical spray breaking into your house tonight and dragging you off in their car.

                      That’s what we’re talking about. Wearing a police uniform does nothing to make any of those actions legitimate in any way.

                      It’s a serious crime and it it warrants a serious response.

                    • miravox

                      It seems like they were only held to account because she filed a private prosecution. Why did this have to happen for her to get justice? Surely, if these police made a mistake the police should have sorted it earlier?

                    • McFlock

                      I’m sure the judge gave those facts the weight they deserved.

                  • Lanthanide

                    @ felix:

                    Imagine two police officers coming to your house and knocking on the door, asking to come in and talk to you about a car accident you were recently in. You barricade yourself in the ensuite in your bedroom. The police officers enter the house because your child lets them in. They come up to your bedroom door and try to talk to you through the door, asking you to come and speak to them. After refusing, they leave for a couple of minutes, before returning and breaking into the room. For whatever reason, they decided you weren’t co-operating and handcuff you and arrest you.

                    The fact that they are police in police uniforms is important. They did have reason to be *at* (not in) the house, in order to find out more information about the car accident that you had recently been involved in.

                    That is quite different from thugs with sticks and pepper spray breaking into my house and dragging me away in a car.

                    • QoT

                      Yes. The “quite different” bit is where the thugs’ actions just make me think they’re thugs, and the police’s actions make me question the entire culture of New Zealand law enforcement.

                      One of these is slightly more damaging to the stability of a democratic society.

                    • Rogue Trooper

                      “which of these things is not like the other, which of these things just doesn’t belong…”

                    • Lanthanide

                      I agree QoT, but I don’t see the justice in punishing individuals for what is a failing of their employer.

                      It’s unfortunate that it took a private prosecution to get here, as well.

                    • felix

                      Lanth, you’ve stated several times that it’s the fault of the employer that these men broke the law. However I’ve yet to see you address the well established principles that following orders is no excuse, and that ignorance of the law is no excuse.

                      Do you realise what an extraordinary precedent you would be setting if you were to overturn those principles?

                      Essentially your excuse boils down to “Well no-one specifically told us we weren’t supposed to break into people’s homes, kick in their bedroom doors, and drag women off into the night so how would we ever know it was wrong?”

                      “Imagine two police officers coming to your house and knocking on the door, asking to come in and talk to you about a car accident you were recently in. You barricade yourself in the ensuite in your bedroom. The police officers enter the house because your child lets them in. They come up to your bedroom door and try to talk to you through the door, asking you to come and speak to them. After refusing, they leave for a couple of minutes, before returning and breaking into the room. For whatever reason, they decided you weren’t co-operating and handcuff you and arrest you.”

                      That is absolutely horrific. Those two men should be charged with aggravated kidnapping among the other crimes you describe. They had absolutely no business invading a home as you describe.

                    • felix

                      “I agree QoT, but I don’t see the justice in punishing individuals for what is a failing of their employer.”

                      No Lanth, you don’t agree at all. You are saying that the fact they were in Police costume to some degree legitimises their offending (reason to be there etc).

                      QoT is saying it makes it worse (supposed to be upholding the law not operating as a criminal organisation).

        • miravox

          +1 That’s what I thought.

          This report is just a routine page filler from the looks – the sub-ed probably didn’t even bother reading passed the the first sentence before writing that headline.

          I’d be very interested to know more about what led to a private prosecution.

        • Murray Olsen

          I agree with Felix. The poaka are given extraordinary powers and should use them with extraordinary responsibility. They are the ones who wanted the crime of home invasion on the books. Let them take the same consequences that they wanted for any young guy they manage to fit up for it.

      • Rogue Trooper 2.1.2

        excellent compensation

        • miravox

          I thought it was extremely generous for people who were ‘cleared’ to pay that sort of money.. And costs too!

          I assumed that usually if someone was cleared the person who brought the charges would do the paying. Strange that.

  3. Paul 3

    The dumbing down of New Zealand by the MSM continues.
    The Herald’s front page today?
    Philippine typhoon Haiyan?
    The sale of Air New Zealand shares?
    Pike River?

    No..a hit and run incident in Hamilton.

    Join the Media Revolution: Unplug the MSM

    • Banter 3.1

      We get Miley Cyrus’ 21st birthday plans as front page World News in the Dom Post. Riveting stuff

      • phillip ure 3.1.1

        tvone breakfast were spoilt for choice..

        ..they had were able to loop both the disgruntled-spouse hit/hit and run vid..from hamilton..

        ..and the vid from new mexico showing cops blazing away at a car full of children..

        (..and of course..there was the elephant-offer/vid..cue trunk-cam..)

        ..that all got them all quite excited.. for us..?


        ..phillip ure..

      • Mary 3.1.2

        And a right-wing advertisement for asset sales first up on Ninetonoon! Fantastic stuff. Who the hell is Ryan’s producer? That show has become a total joke. I never used to miss it. Now I listen if I happen to be around, and only to confirm in my my mind how hopelessly shallow it’s become. Someone needs to put Ryan out to pasture.


    “..corporate-media-trout dann unveiled this new adjective-de-norm for key on breakfast telly..

    ..(maybe ‘relaxed’ has been overused..?..lost whatever cachet it may have once claimed..?

    ..who knows..?..)

    ..but ‘comfortable’ it is then..”


    phillip ure..

    • Paul 4.1

      He’s only in media as a career …aiming for his next promotion. So he sucks up to corporates and shills their lines.
      How to deal with folk like Dann….

      • ianmac 4.1.1

        Where was NZ in the call for real news MSM on the 16 November? Not sure how we get it unless it will be down to online journalism.

    • greywarbler 4.2

      phillip ure
      Interesting – comfortable – that’s what they use in hospital language to indicate that an accident victim hasn’t died. Very suitable language for Jokey Hen.

  5. Adrian 5

    What referendum?
    Wheres the advertising? How’s it being done? When is it? The only advertising is that it’s 2 days after the Government loses control of AirNZ.
    What the fuck is going on? I haven’t got a clue and I follow politics reasonably closely.

    • JK 5.1

      Yes Adrian – there’s a very real danger that many of those people who signed the petition against asset sales will not bother to vote . The gambler ShonKey is taking a gamble on that – as well as on the horses – and he could well turn out to be right.

    • bad12 5.2

      The voting papers are said to be in the mail this week, there has been a bit of advertising on the TV,(the little orange cartoon figure who immediately switches OFF my brain urging everyone to be enrolled for the upcoming referendum)…

    • weka 5.3

      In addition to the State’s publicising, there needs to be some kind of social media drive around the referendum, so that people can understand that this is political activism that has a point irrespective of the referendum being non-binding.

      I’m trying to think of strategies to use when people tell me there is no point in voting, to prevent me from clocking them.

      • Rosie 5.3.1

        I’ve also been thinking of angles on this too weka. I’m guessing people I know of who aren’t politically engaged, are disillusioned but still hate to see what is being done to our country will say “what’s the point? They won’t listen anyway”

        I may point out to them that if we all think that way and don’t respond to the referendum, then it shows Key and his Govt that he has won. Do they want to wipe that smug smile off his face? Then oppose Asset Sales. If we all do it, his fragile ego will be crushed by the disapproval of the public.

        Perhaps people’s distrust and dislike of Key will motivate them., rather than the idea of them participating in democracy. What I’ve observed with friends and family (all of whom are either Nat voters or non voters and both camps are completely politically disengaged) is many of them can’t even grasp the fact that they do have a voice that’s not limited to voting once every 3 years and how they can use it. I don’t like to use a negative angle, at the same time I know some folks respond to it, so I’m going to go with the most likely to succeed strategy.

        Hopefully others are smarter and get it if you explain why their voice is so very important.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.4

      How To

      And, yeah, the actual information about it out in the world is almost non existent.

      • karol 5.4.1

        I was just working on a post, then realised I need to be careful about the regulations about promoting a yes or now answer, or advertising as such. I looked at the regs, and now I’m not sure what I can post… anyone?

        Can I post an op ed piece about asset sales, and include mention of, and links to’s web pages on the referendum, its question, etc.?

        • NZ Femme

          Karol, I thought an op ed piece would fall under:

          “… Exemption for news or comment

          There is an exemption in section 41(4) of the Citizens Initiated Referenda Act for news or comments in a newspaper or other periodical or in a radio or television broadcast. Content that falls within the exemption will not be subject to the referendum advertising rules under the Act..”

          • karol

            OK. Thanks, NZ Femme. I’ll include a link to the electoral web page, put in a copy of the question & urge people to vote. Let me know if it looks like it’s infringed some, regulation, please?

        • bad12

          Karol, as a guess i doubt that referenda are covered in quite the same way as the restrictions on voting in a General election,

          You could email the Electoral Commission and ask them if there are any specific rules you need adhere to…

  6. bad12 6

    Slippery the Prime Minister in His guise as the used car salesman trying to tell us all that the rusting dunger with the clouds of smoke pouring from the motor is a bargain to good to pass up,

    Having had discussions,(so He says), with the Sri Lankan regime over the many thousands of their citizens who have vanished into thin air in what are termed ‘white van abductions’ assured everyone this morning via RadioNZ National that it’s all good because said regime has a registration system for those who have had a visit from the ‘white vans’,

    And how this makes the victims any less disappeared seems to be a question the PM hasn’t considered while trotting out His glib bulls**t in defence of what is obviously a murderous regime…

    • vto 6.1

      As long as he can get a deal for his farmer voters to sell their milk then all good. People don’t matter.

      Like Pike River. It is all about the money with John Key. People don’t matter.

  7. Kevin Welsh 7

    Gerry Brownlee; from wood working teacher to law expert…

    • i am also impressed how being a woodwork-teacher made brownlee such an oracle on the subject of climatechange..

      (i think he sits with colin craig on that one..

      ..something to do with ‘planet-movements’ i understand it..)

      ..most reassuring to have in a minister of

      ..that ‘planet-movement’ thing..

      ..and all built on such a strong base..

      ..of woodwork-teaching..

      (and funny story..!..he is one of the ‘stars’ of this govt..(!)


      ..but have you ever seen/heard craig foss..?

      ..that other minister ‘of some note’..

      ..(i think he is there as a clever make parata look better..)

      ..double-whoar..! can see how anyone with a pulse..

      ..would be a ‘star’ next to that one/sorry state of affairs..

      ..phillip ure

      • Rogue Trooper 7.1.1

        I received a questionnaire from the office of Foss; It’s quite funny, if it wasn’t so deceptive in it’s construction. Will transcribe later in the week.

    • vto 7.2


      Is why the nats will get a roasting everywhere in Christchurch next election (except Ilam where they got preferential treatment).

      Is why so many nats are abandoning ship.

      they are rudderless, leaderless, principleless, useless

    • alwyn 7.3

      You are right Kevin, a person who has been a woodwork teacher many years ago is clearly unqualified to be a Cabinet Minister.
      If we were to allow such appalling things to happen we might end up with a stationary engine driver becoming Prime Minister, instead of limiting the job to the rarefied ranks on former Law Professors.
      On second thoughts I think most people would agree with me the Norman Kirk was a much better PM than was Geoff Palmer.

      • felix 7.3.1

        I read Kevin’s comment as implying that Brownlee is unqualified in matters of law. Hardly controversial.

        What you’ve done in your first sentence is pretend to agree with something Kevin never said, that he is unqualified to be a cabinet minister, and extrapolated a strawman position from there. That was very dishonest of you alwyn. Go sit in the corner.

        Absolutely anyone can be a cabinet minister. You don’t even need to be elected, it’s an appointment at the PM’s discretion.

        ps teaching kids to work with their hands is one of the most important jobs anyone can undertake, and in Brownlee’s case it was probably his last useful act on planet earth.

        • Lanthanide

          That seems wrong to me so I had a look at the cabinet manual. I couldn’t find anything saying specifically who can and cannot be a member of cabinet. The closest I found is this:

          5.5 Cabinet comprises Ministers in Cabinet. Ministers outside Cabinet and Parliamentary Under-Secretaries, however, may on occasion attend Cabinet for discussion on particular items with the express prior permission of the Prime Minister.

          Ministers are required to be MPs, so must have been elected one way or another.

          • felix

            Where does it say “Ministers are required to be MPs”?

            • Lanthanide

              Could have looked this up yourself you know, I already provided a link to the website.

              2.16 In appointing Ministers, the Governor-General acts on the advice of the Prime Minister. Practical and political considerations, such as internal party rules or the terms of a coalition agreement, may affect the process by which the Prime Minister reaches decisions on the advice to be given to the Governor-General. The primary legal restriction, as set out in the Constitution Act 1986, is that all Ministers of the Crown must be members of Parliament (except in some transitional circumstances – see paragraphs 1.28, 6.44, and 6.47).


        • alwyn

          Saying “unqualified to be a Cabinet Minister” may, and I only say “may” be taking his opinion a little far.
          However he is certainly implying that commenting on the law, and lawyers, is the prerogative of the legally trained when he mentions the fact thar Brownlie had been a woodwork teacher and was now a “law expert”.
          I don’t see why that should be the case of course. The last Labour Government, in 2005 appointed an Attorney-General who had no legal qualifications at all. Michael Cullen took over from a truly disastrous predecessor who had to be kicked up to being the Speaker. She had, of course previously been a Law Professor and was no doubt considered to have been a “law expert”. As Attorney-General MC was responsible for overseeing the entire New Zealand legal system.
          Can you really be a Minister without being an MP? I don’t see how it would be possible without being in Parliament and able to face questions at question time. Britain did it of course by appointing non-MPs to the House of Lords, so that they were parliamentarians.

          • felix

            “However he is certainly implying that commenting on the law, and lawyers, is the prerogative of the legally trained when he mentions the fact thar Brownlie had been a woodwork teacher and was now a “law expert”.”

            Oh I think anyone can comment on the law, but how seriously those comments ought to be taken when they contradict those of the legally trained is another matter.

            To be clear, I do think it’s a bit cheap and ignorant to imply that someone’s background in the technical subjects makes them unfit to comment on the lofty matters of law. In Brownlee’s case it’s the fact that he’s an idiot that makes him unfit to comment.

            I may well be wrong about the requirement for Ministers to be MPs. I was under the impression that it’s by convention only.

            • Lanthanide

              It is by convention only, in the sense that the cabinet manual is not legally binding law, but a constitutional convention.

              It’s as good as law though. Because if some action were to happen outside of the convention, there’s nothing stopping it, but a conversation would take place amongst the movers and shakers to determine what to do about it; eg the convention could be altered to allow the new action, or the action overturned etc.

              It’s the same situation as “What happens if the GG declines to sign a law presented to them by Parliament? What if that law was morally repugnant?” – we won’t know what would happen in that situation until it happened.

          • Tracey

            usually it’s not the job of ANY MP to question a judge’s ruling let alone on the basis that said critic says it is legally flawed. Had he said he had legal advice that the decision is deeply flawed… it would have been both accurate and non controversial. he used to be an expert on mining… but Wilkinson had to resign not him.

        • Murray Olsen

          One of his ex-students told me he was a useless woodwork teacher and an even worse rugby coach. He apparently sat in his car with a megaphone, eating while he shouted out orders.

          • alwyn

            You should be careful you know.
            If another person made the claim that he was a great, energetic, inspiring teacher, and coach they would be the subject of a concerted demand for citations, references etc.
            If one says something bad about a National MP it is of course always completely acceptable and no evidence is required.
            On second thoughts no-one here will expect any evidence from you. The reaction will be that it must be right because it is derogatory to Brownlie.

            • Rogue Trooper

              Prima facie ( Res ipsa loquitur )

            • Tracey

              He was at the opening of Pike River waving the National banner on behalf of the government and enjoying the champers with the Board and Executive. Wilkinson resigned though. Nuff fact for ya?

              “Gerry Brownlee To Open Pike River Coal Mine
              Friday, 21 November 2008, 4:14 pm
              Press Release: Pike River Coal

              Economic Development Minister To Open Pike River Coal Mine

              Economic Development Minister Gerry Brownlee will formally open Pike River’s new underground mine next Thursday (27 November) as coal stockpiles start to grow.

              The new mine is creating jobs, strengthening the regional economy, and will earn the New Zealand Government millions of dollars in taxes and royalties over the 18 year life of the mine.

              Pike River started production of premium hard coking coal from the Brunner seam of the Paparoa Ranges on 17 October 2008 and the output is destined to fuel coke plants and steel mill furnaces in India, Japan and other international markets.

              Chief Executive Gordon Ward welcomes the decision of the Minister to open the mine because it reinforces the government’s priority on building and improving New Zealand’s economic performance.

              “Pike River is going to contribute towards that growth and it’s good to have government recognition as we get underway,” he says.

              The mine is scheduled to produce 200,000 tonnes by the end of June 2009, and then achieve its full production rate of one million tonnes a year from July 2009.

              For Mr Brownlee, it will be his first official function as Minister for Economic Development.”

              And BLiP posted lots of facts about the PM on “honest Man” thread… so there are plenty of citations provided.

              • Tracey

                Gerry Brownlee: Responsible mining can boost our economy
                5:26 PM Monday Apr 5, 2010

                Digging up minerals is an emotive issue but the benefits are real, writes Gerry Brownlee…

                Mining is an emotive issue and it’s important we have a mature and considered debate. That debate should include a discussion about the economic benefits…

                Many New Zealanders will not know that mining already makes a sizeable contribution to our economy. Mining in 2008 was a $2 billion industry and contributed $1.1 billion to exports.

                Including oil and gas, the mining industry employs around 6000 people – and those jobs are highly productive and highly paid, relative to other sectors of the economy.

                Mining is an important part of regional economies such as the West Coast and the Coromandel.

                The Government is currently borrowing around $240 million a week and we have more than 100,000 people unemployed. The tradables sector of the economy has been in recession for the past five years.

                That is unsustainable and the Government accepts the challenge of improving our economy and living standards…

                The real benefits from mining are the jobs created and economic activity generated inside the country. That activity generates company tax revenue for the Government as well as economic growth…
                Modern mining is totally different from its image in the past. Companies are required to rehabilitate the land after they leave and mitigate the effects of their activities as much as possible…

                A good example of a responsible mining company is Pike River Coal in the Paparoa Ranges, which won an award from the Department of Conservation for the environmental consideration it displayed in developing its underground mine .

                Some have also argued that mining puts New Zealand’s clean and green image at risk and that tourism may be affected. But the Government is proposing only a small increase in mining activity for quite large economic gain…
                The Government believes a small increase in responsible mining could contribute to our goal of improving the economy’s performance and providing high-value jobs.

                * Gerry Brownlee is Minister of Energy and Resources.”

                BUT Wilkinson resigned, not him

              • Tracey

                note it only produced 48,000 in first twelve months well under it’s projections when applying for a license

              • alwyn

                Tracey, I am sure this and all your following comments are very interesting but they have nothing whatsoever to do with my comment, or Murray Olsen’s, to which I was replying.
                Murray was claiming that Gerry was a lousy woodwork teacher and an even worse rugby coach. I was merely suggesting that no evidence would be required for his views and hinting that a moan about any National MP was always taken at face value.
                I would appear to be correct in that assumption.
                I will repeat however that my suggestion had nothing whatsoever to do with anything Gerry might have been involved in regarding Pike River, or indeed with his entire parliamentary career

            • Tracey

              Gerry Brownlee cutting the ribbon… see page 38 at link below


              Yet Wilkinson resigned.

            • Murray Olsen

              It’s right as far as the opinion of one ex-student can be. That’s all I’ve claimed for it. I didn’t even claim that the student’s opinions were correct, even they I found the story very believable. Please try harder and read what I actually write next time. I keep most of my comments short so you should be able to read them before your knee jerks up and blocks your vision.

    • greywarbler 7.4

      They use a wooden gavel on the Bench (wooden?) don’t they? And Brownlee has legs like tree trunks.
      So there are many connections to be made here. The facial expression….

      Now my screen has the comment box on 75% blank white background – name at top is WP Ajax Edit Co… with a red flag.

    • Rogue Trooper 7.5

      a wooden-pecker with a sticky beak!

      • fender 7.5.1

        Bring on the borer bombs, lathe them down with Gorilla Glue..

        • Rogue Trooper

          how do you generally fill your days fender, may I ask. 😎 (I’m familiar with a few of the posse through smoke-signals from TS and fb and the media).

          • fender

            Here’s my typical day… 😉

            • Rogue Trooper

              “and forget to Breathe for just one minute because of some beauty that has not been altered, damned or pointed out by the clumsy dark oafs that train them”. 😀

            • Rosie

              Had to smile – Classic Tall Dwarfs and the tile reminiscent of the majority of my days.

              • fender

                We have great artists in this country. Looking forward to change of government…then something can happen!

                • Rosie

                  We do indeed and despite everything we still have great artists producing great music.

                  I do feel some times though that the whole country has slipped into a coma and have become SUV driving, x factor/the block watching, BBQ obsessed borgs, as a gross generalisation. (however there are pockets of fertile creative activity hidden in the crevices of our society).

                  Nothing IS happening.

                  What about political satire? Where did it go? Are we scared, or too depressed to produce it? Satire can hold a govt to account in ways that opposition parties can’t get away with and engage the population in a way that opposition parties can’t always manage to do.

                  The only show we really have is 7 days (which I am in two minds about) and they do satirise our pollies. The No Minister segment, where they wheel out an MP for a game is always good. Interestingly, I’m wondering if they’ve based the show on a UK panel show called Mock The Week, hosted by Dara O Briain. The show was devised by Dan Patterson who used to produce Whose Line Is It Anyway.7 Days is in the same format as Mock The Week. Our show, however seems more sanitised.

                  Also looking forward to something happening, in all manner of ways! Tired of inertia.

                  • ghostrider888

                    you summoned

                  • fender

                    +1 well said

                    Yeah 7 Days is often funny in a schoolboy style, but we have no clever intelligent political satire of the McPhail & Gadsby / Spitting Image type.

                    It’s hard not to think there’s an organised dumbing down agenda being played out.

                  • Paul

                    We live in a plutocracy

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    What about political satire? Where did it go? Are we scared, or too depressed to produce it?

                    My impression is that NZ has become too cheap to pay for it – as well as everything else. It’s all part of the Race to the Bottom that is modern economics. Everyone has come to believe that they can have whatever they want at the price they want to pay which isn’t related in any way to cost of actually supplying it.

    • Jilly Bee 7.6

      Kevin – while I agree that Gerry Brownlee is a complete and utter boof head I get really hacked off when his previous profession is constantly brought into disrepute in order to poke the borax at him. My partner is a retired technology teacher, who happened to specialise in woodwork. He also has his City & Guilds qualifications, which were gained in UK when he was an apprentice carpenter and joiner, which augmented his salary quite considerably once he completed his teachers training course and commenced employment in New Zealand. I think you will find that on the whole, technology teachers are not the uneducated yokels as often portrayed in (deserved) criticism of Gerry Brownlee. Both of us are NOT supporters of this government and are actively working to have them voted out next year.

      • felix 7.6.1

        +1 Jilly Bee.

        As I said above, teaching kids to work with their hands was probably the last useful thing Brownlee did.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.6.2

        IMO, Teachers, in general, are considered uneducated in NZ. It’s really quite an erroneous view. We see this in National’s attacks on teachers and the teachers union which hardly ever get challenged in the MSM.

    • emergency mike 7.7

      Ol’ Gerry’s got a history of making dodgy legal calls. Like when he lost a civil assault case against him and tried to pass the $48,000 legal bill onto the tax payer.

      “In hindsight, I would have thought ‘oh well, I’ve got this big bill, I may as well see what is possible’. But quite clearly it wasn’t appropriate.”

      Quite clearly Gerry. Quite clearly.

  8. it is when he veers away from the autocue..that peter williams gets ‘interesting’..

    ..having auto-cued for so long now..

    ..williams seems to feel that (by a process of osmosis?) all that auto-cueing has made him someone whose opinions should be listened to..

    ..of course they aren’t..

    ..when he crosses his arms over his chest..and launches into what pete thinks about whatever..

    ..we are instantly in grumpy old reactionary mouthing off on talkback-radio territory..

    ..and really..williams just spouts utter shite..

    ..this mornings gem..?

    ..’pete’s’ opinion on robin williams:..

    ..”..he isn’t funny..he hasn’t moved on since ‘good morning vietnam.’..

    ..i’ll leave you to contemplate that howler..(that film being one of williams’ lesser-works..but pete wouldn’t know he doen’t know so much else..)

    ..and will make the case that williams is an intellectual-petrie-dish..

    ..and one sitting on a shelf full of them..

    ..(the weather-guy ‘sammy’ put on his serious/’tutt-tutt..!’-face..

    ..and made some irrelevant/irredeemibly-stupid comment on american gun laws..


    ..we are forced to turn to ‘rawdy’ for intellectual-relief..?


    ..phillip ure..

    • greywarbler 8.1

      ..we are forced to turn to ‘rawdy’ for intellectual-relief..?

      See paul above :

      Join the Media Revolution: Unplug the MSM

  9. Tracey 9


    indeed. Irony alert…

    “There is not a lot that can be done at the present time,” he told Parliament on November 7. “I’m deeply distressed by this . . . and I do find it extraordinary that someone can sit on the bench of a court in this country and inflict such injustice on so many people.”

  10. dv 10

    I enjoyed this

    Air NZ asked to loan their pilots to Jet Star

    et Star needs pilots in order to cover their flights – they overpromised and are unable to operate without these pilots. They have approached Air NZ requesting Air NZ pilots fly Jet Star planes – at Air NZ’s expense. This means Air NZ will have to reduce both domestic and international flights.

    Air NZ has refused.

    Jet Star managers are up in arms at Air NZ’s refusal to cover. They are encouraging their passengers to write opinion pieces to the papers and to comment in social media damning this divisive approach.


    It seems that ACT supporters who encouraged the development of charter schools – an apparently different, new, innovative and exciting model of education (and a well funded education model with – because charter schools can afford it – small class sizes) are now upset that local public schools (not as well funded) are saying they are not prepared to teach the charter school students.

    Hang on a minute – isn’t this supposed to be a new model of education? One that doesn’t require qualified registered teachers? A model outside the state system – doing it differently.

    Seems that for charter schools ‘doing it differently’ means – the ability to access and use for free the teaching resources of state schools – so that the charter school extra funding can be used elsewhere. The state schools are expected to juggle their resources for the benefit of the charter school.

    Go figure.

    If the charter school students will “miss out on opportunities” because they can’t be taught in the state schools – then why was it we needed charter schools?

    The NZ model of charter schools isn’t about students. The NZ model of charter schools is about opening up the education market.

    Lets close these schools before they open – stop the division – and resource all our state schools appropriately in order to support all our students.

    • greywarbler 10.1

      It is interesting that the PPTA picked up on this and saw the comparison of private companies trying to profit from the use of others’ resources. Jetstar wanting to use AirNZ, and charter schools wanting to use state-funded resources for their private school advantage. It’s having two bits of the cherry. Great if the cherry orchard sits back and lets you have it. I haven’t been able to find a source for this on google, a link would be good.

      I am never surprised by what Australian companies and government will come up with. They regard NZ as a convenience to use when required.

      So Jetstar doesn’t run its business properly and greedily goes for travellers and undercuts other (Air NZ) prices and can’t deliver the services. So it wants AirNZ to take them on at its own expense. It must view us as it’s spare rental service, to tide it over any of its mistakes. I wouldn’t know what response we’d get the opposite situation, but I would hazard the old 80-2o rule of thumb, against.

      • dv 10.1.1

        Jetstar are not asking for pilots, the comment is using the Jetstar asking Air Nz for pilots a an example of the charter school CEO asking state schools to cover them for some subjects.

        • greywarbler

          So where did the Jetstar connection come from? I’m confused. Or is this another one of these irony things. Where you state something as real and expect everyone to know that it isn’t actually. So what is real? Are we supposed to go into a philosophical foetal position each time we read or hear something?

          Are the first three words supposed to be read as code? I spit on this sort of smart shit stuff if so.
          A tall tale? Jet Star needs pilots in order to cover their flights – they overpromised and are unable to operate without these pilots. They have approached Air NZ requesting Air NZ pilots fly Jet Star planes – at Air NZ’s expense. This means Air NZ will have to reduce both domestic and international flights.>/i>

  11. ianmac 11

    Jetstar Charter Schools? Well why not. You have spotted the irony there dv. I like the connectivity.

    • ianmac 12.1

      Actually I think that that percentage of favourable to Kiwi Assure Insurance is pretty good. If Paddy was a little less biased he would have been shouting at the 75% plus who disliked the Asset Sales.
      “Massive Government failure to gain support from Mum and Dad voters for Asset Sales! Clearly this Key Government is facing humiliating defeat!”
      Good ideas take time as did Kiwibank.

    • Rogue Trooper 12.2

      49% No- [ National block voters]: 42% Yes.

      [Labour Voters ] 58% Yes: 34 % No

      -from the 3News Article the night the poll results came out. 😉
      (Gower’s use of the term “fizzer” may have been self-referential).

      • Colonial Viper 12.2.1

        Correct. Support for Kiwisure is far broader than the usual LAB/GR block of 45% = it’s a winner.

        • bad12

          Yeah i can here the thundering of feet running for the ballot box right now as the masses turn out to vote for Kiwisure,

          The BIG announcement from the Labour Conference, pfft God save us from them all, mind you David in His speech did aknowlege that there is child poverty in New Zealand but didn’t have the breath apparently to tell us all what He measures He proposes to fix this…

          • Colonial Viper

            I’m hearing you.

            Labour is willing to take a big poll hit to get gender equality right. Is it willing to take a poll hit to get poverty, working poverty and child poverty issues right?

            • bad12

              Yes, wouldn’t it be a great world for the leader of Labour, a truly RED Labour as he says, to stand up and lay out a comprehensive program to first fix the child poverty issue,

              An immediate food in schools program that involves 10X the crumbs swept off the table in the kids direction by Slippery the Prime Minister with a promise to include beneficiary children in a revamped tax credit in the first term would just about do it,

              i realize that Slippery’s Government are setting up the books to hand to Labour a real financial mess in either 2014 or 2017, where the level of Government debt along with the sell off of 50% of the assets against which that debt was raised will mean (a), the ability to raise further debt by a Government of the left may be rebuffed by the International Banksters which as far as i can see is the intent of what National are currently attempting around the countries finances,

              Or (b), the same International Banksters will step in through the credit ratings agencies that they control and downgrade New Zealand’s credit rating for the same ‘reasons’ as above,

              Having said all that, people won’t climb down off the fence and turn out for Labour on polling day based solely upon ‘blind faith’, if the people can discern no difference then there isn’t really one…

              • Rogue Trooper

                Cheer up bad, I for one am gettin’ on the electoral role, and finally, finally, joining the NZLP! They are on my wheel-barrow list. (been putting it off, yet then, not all is determined.) 😀

    • framu 12.3

      its gower PR

      regardless of who you support i would be extremely wary about using him to try and make any kind of point other than “hes a shit journalist”

    • newsense 12.4

      more complete bollocks from Gower-

      new policy supported roughly along partisan lines in initial poll

      Especially like this BS from him

      “”This is early days,” says Mr Cunliffe. “It’s only been in the market a couple of weeks; there will be a lot of people who don’t know about it.”
      So David Cunliffe’s first big policy is a fizzer.”

      He loves the mano-eh-mano, I’ve called it, kind of bullshit instead of any thoughtful comment

  12. Mary 13

    I’ve always thought that companies having their own team of employed lawyers whose job it is to advise on how to shaft as many people as possible without quite breaking the law is indicative of a system that is very broken. Bullet-proof suits, though – for now, anyway – has to take the cake.

  13. Morrissey 14

    Forget international law: victims just need to talk
    Yet another counseling industry fraudster vapors about the Middle East

    Radio NZ National, Monday 18 November 2013

    “Seek wise counsel to avoid false counsel.” — Song of Solomon

    After the ten o’clock news, we were subjected to an extended interview with “international mediator” Ken Cloke, who “has worked to resolve conflicts in war zones around the world.”

    I had a feeling this guy would be pretty much a bag of hot air. Sadly, my misgivings proved to be correct….

    KATHRYN RYAN: You’ve had quite a bit to do with trying to resolve the conflict in the Middle East. ….[drops her voice a semi-tone in order to indicate great sincerity] …. How DO you solve this intractable problem?

    KEN CLOKE: [speaking slowly and quietly to convey thoughtfulness] The problem in the Middle East is the mass of grief. There was this brilliant film on HBO called To Die in Jerusalem, which brought together the mother of a Palestinian suicide bomber and the mother of the suicide bomber’s victim. Of course the encounter fell apart… What needs to happen is for people to talk to one another. When people talk to each other, magic happens….

    KEN CLOKE: People are most angry when they are in conflict, but nobody gets angry over things they don’t care about….This is what we have to do: we have to be nice to each other, we have to be kind to each other.

    KATHRYN RYAN: Professor Ken Cloke. He’s in New Zealand as a guest of Massey University…

    Appalled, I sent the following email….

    Israel needs to obey international law, then it can talk to its victims
    Dear Kathryn,

    So, according to Professor Cloke, the problem in the Occupied Territories is simply one of “talking to each other”.


    The facts are: one of the parties has illegally occupied the territory of the other for nearly fifty years and has continued to inflict the most brutal degradation on the survivors, routinely burning crops and uprooting olive orchards, bombing vital infrastructure like hospitals and water , cutting off water and electricity to collectively punish whole communities, licensing marauding gangs of “settlers” to prey at will, shooting and harassing them every day. That same party has now built a huge annexation wall to steal their land and cut their communities off almost completely. All of this has been carried out in defiance of the international community and has violated nearly every tenet of international law.

    Yet Professor Cloke claims the problem is about the Palestinians and their oppressors “not talking to one another.” No doubt, a few generations ago, people like Professor Cloke urged the imprisoned denizens of the Warsaw Ghetto to talk to their oppressors, too.

    Yours sincerely,
    Morrissey Breen
    Northcote Point

    • Rogue Trooper 14.1

      Professor Cloked in cliche. So much to despair for on a Monday morning.

      -You who dwell in the garden
      with friends in attendance
      let [ us ] hear your voice.

  14. Colonial Viper 15

    Special series on Labor’s dramatic fall apart

    Rudd referring to Gillard as “The Bitch” and Gillard referring to Rudd’s “Shit Iceberg”.

    Lovely Labor politics

  15. Tiger Mountain 16

    There is no rape culture in New Zealand!
    No sleaze bags in our squad cars….
    –to tune of Blam Blam Blam’s “There is no depression in New Zealand”

  16. Ennui 17

    After last weeks “rape culture” posts I got very agitated and thought about violence and the responses it draws from normally mild people. I reflected on the deep dark soul of the common person: I suspect we actually are all hard wired to violence. Individual violence, massed rage in response.

    From a young age my sons saw fit to clobber each other rather than resolve disagreements verbally. This was despite our house working on a strictly non physical punishment model and no examples of overt violence. If they did not play sport on the weekend they were very fractious, they needed an outlet for the energy. They grew out of it as they got older. Slowly, late teenage. No amount of logic entered their skulls.

    My daughter did not show the overt physical aggressiveness of the boys, but hell, she too could deal it verbally. And she did not hold back. I saw far more overt bullying amongst the girls; she certainly honed her verbal skills in response to female bullying. To me it was far more distressing than the boys physical nature, far more scarring and damaging to self esteem.

    Myself, my parents did use “discipline” but sparingly. I loved fighting as a kid, win some lose some. It only stopped when I realised that the impact of the violence could have extreme consequence for the victim. Boys don’t learn from taking a beating: they work on the principle that if you want results apply more force. So it escalates. What stops it is developing empathy. You have to be able to imagine the other person’s pain, distress, hurt, imagine it is your own, feel it.

    So how do we cut out the violence that includes rape? Turn on the TV and you wont get an answer, the media is full of stories where might is right, violence in pursuit of a “noble” goal acceptable. The cop who cuts the corners, breaks an arm but gets the “baddy”. Or shoots him. This of course sends a powerful message: the ends justify the means.

    You won’t get it from a rap video where the image is hard hoodlum glorified by the lyrics, everything centric on “me, me , me” just look at “me”. Or the female equivalent, the sexualised object, it’s all about “me” yet again. Egocentric to the point that everybody else is nothing.

    So to how we try to stop violence: we reinforce it constantly. We attempt to legislate and force it to stop; we imprison those convicted of violence. We punish violence. Which itself is necessarily a coercive and hurtful violence of another form. And we wonder that we don’t get results.

    How do we teach empathy and self respect? I think that is the key, but I am unsure about how we do it. Any ideas?

    • Rogue Trooper 17.1

      The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness .
      -some informative reviews too. (it was my observation as a nursing student and a health-worker that empathy is rarely learnt through formal instruction).

      • Ennui 17.1.1

        Jeez Rogue, that takes me back years. Read some Fromm way back, had not grown out of Marxism at the time.

    • karol 17.2

      A physical tussle between people or relatively equal strength may seem the better option. however, if someone is confronted with one or more people of much greater strength, who is/are prone to unleash physical violence…. well, I’d take the verbal option any day.

      • Ennui 17.2.1

        True, but if you are not doing the confronting because you know how not to…how do we get the other person on the same page so that the interaction is by default non confrontational.

    • vto 17.3

      good post mr ennui. Have posted couple thoughts myself over the times – the resort to violence and the resort to physical sanction throughout our society. Various thoughts have included;

      1. Our move away from controlled physical sanction (e.g. duels, cat of nine tails) is out of whack with humankind’s history. Is there something in that?
      2. Verbal violence is, generally, much more damaging than physical violence, yet there is no law against it. A black eye will heal, a cutting jibe can have lasting effects.
      3. We accept war as part of the human interaction but think, on a smaller scale, that similar physical sanction is unacceptable.

      among others….

      I actually wonder if the points above have made us in fact more violent i.e. we avoid physical sanction for good reasons but in doing so we also miss part of our innate condition of physical resolution to matters.

      Clearly, I am not advocating violence, but maybe by taking physical resolution off the table as an option we are forcing the natural physical manner of humans out another outlet, and it comes out as violence….

      …some 2c of continuing thought…

      • miravox 17.3.1

        my 2c worth…

        1. – Moving away from controlled physical sanction is evolution – learning from experience that nothing good comes from violence.

        2. – Ask the guy at the receiving end of this physical violence if verbal is worst than the physical – he gave the verbal, and the guy on the receiving end is still standing… except maybe he won’t understand anymore what you asked. I do agree verbal spite can be incredibly destructive, and when it prefaces physical violence can make the experience of violence worse. But it’s not worse (but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s better either) than physical violence. Of course the verbal is cutting and remembered, although the black eye may heal, it is remembered too.

        3 – I don’t accept war as part of human interaction. I see war as a failure of human interaction, and that’s also how I see physical violence generally.

        • Ennui

          Mira / VTO, agree with the comments thanks. It would be nice if we could channel aggression at an early age in a positive direction and fast track the development of empathy and respect.
          War to me is a collective violence, healthy societies are usually more adverse if still prone. Thats an even harder question.

    • Colonial Viper 17.4

      Some experience of mild violence is fine and probably very necessary. There is nothing to fear, except not learning from it correctly, that is.

      How do we teach empathy and self respect? I think that is the key, but I am unsure about how we do it. Any ideas?

      Look back to the traditions, both new and old.

  17. Rogue Trooper 18

    Superbugs: Routine ops could become deadlier
    in the “post-antibiotic” era.

  18. Rogue Trooper 19

    …and the world leader who grew most in status and power in 2013 is… (spring-roll)…

    …a maoist?

  19. It is a basic principle of natural justice – that you cannot be a judge in your own case.

    “Nemo iudex in causa sua (or nemo iudex in sua causa) is a Latin phrase that means, literally,
    no-one should be a judge in their own cause. It is a principle of natural justice that no person
    can judge a case in which they have an interest. The rule is very strictly applied to any
    appearance of a possible bias, even if there is actually none: “Justice must not only be done,
    but must be seen to be done”.[1]

    So – how can those who have suffered alleged ‘war crimes’, expect to get a fair hearing /
    independent/ impartial inquiry – when an alleged perpetrator is the Head of the Sri Lankan
    Government, whose brother was a General?

    US embassy cables: Rajapaksa shares responsibility for 2009 Sri Lankan massacre

    “There are no examples we know of a regime undertaking wholesale investigations of its own
    troops or senior officials for war crimes while that regime or government remained in power.

    In Sri Lanka this is further complicated by the fact that responsibility for many of the alleged
    crimes rests with the country’s senior civilian and military leadership, including President
    Rajapaksa and his brothers and opposition candidate General Fonseka.”alleged crimes rests with
    the country’s senior civilian and military leadership, including President Rajapaksa and his
    brothers and opposition candidate General Fonseka.”

    WikiLeaks cables: ‘Sri Lankan president responsible for massacre of Tamils’

    Tamil activists in Britain – where Mahinda Rajapaksa is currently visiting – are seeking an arrest
    warrant for alleged war crimes.

    In my opinion, there needs to be an URGENT independent, international investigation into
    these alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka, and alleged war criminals, especially Sri Lankan President

    Penny Bright

    • Te Reo Putake 21.1

      If you’re posting it, then I’d say whatever it is, its best ignored.

    • Rogue Trooper 21.2

      ahhh, The Hair-Product hawkes by.

    • Paul 21.3

      If it’s Hosking’s opinion, then it’s not worth listening to. How you can respect the thinking of such an such an intellectual lightweight beats me. His views on how best to collect New World toys is about his level?
      Furthermore, he’s a Tory so he’s hardly likely to be giving advice to help Labour that will benefit them, will he?

  20. veutoviper 22

    I could not decide where to put this, but decided OM was best due to the length of comments on the rape culture and march posts.

    (And apologies if someone else has already provided the link to this article on the Herald website that came up at 6.46pm last night – have been ‘out of the picture’ for the last few days.)

    “A 15-year-old girl who says police failed to act on her complaint that she was sexually assaulted by two young men associated with the Roast Busters two years ago has laid a new complaint, according to reports.”

    The rest of the article basically just gives the history.

    I applaud her courage. Hopefully the public reaction and marchs etc have assisted her, and will also assist others.

  21. Here are the speeches made by Catherine Delahunty and Hone Harawira in Raglan on the 16th in support of the flotilla against deep sea oil drilling.

    Interesting is that Hone speaks of not being told anything even though the government is supposed to make the decisions and everything being done via backdoor deals.

  22. Remember THIS Pete George?

    3 September 2013

    Press Release: Penny Bright Auckland Mayoral candidate:

    “There is STILL no mandate for asset sales! No majority – no mandate!”

    “Back on 2 March 2013, I put out the following Press Release:

    “There is NO mandate for asset sales – Peter Dunne and United Future never campaigned for asset sales,” says anti-privatisation campaigner, Auckland Mayoral candidate, Penny Bright.

    “What has changed? NOTHING.”

    “Please be reminded of the FACTS?”

    2 March 2013

    “”There is NO mandate for asset sales – Peter Dunne and United Future never campaigned for asset sales,” Penny Bright 2013 Auckland Mayoral Candidate.”


    Yes – National did campaign for asset sales – albeit in a a not very ‘open and transparent’ way?

    You will note that their 2011 pre-election policy did NOT say – “National supports asset sales”, or “National supports the Mixed Ownership Model for key state assets”.

    THIS is the arguably rather sly way that National wiggled in their stated asset sale policy – prior to the 2011 election:

    “Building savings and investment

    National is increasing savings and creating jobs built on exports and productive investment.
    We’re getting on top of debt, and returning to surplus sooner.
    We will extend the successful mixed-ownership model – where the Government owns most of acompany, but offers a minority stake to investors – to four state-owned energy companies, and reduce the government’s stake in Air New Zealand.
    This will give Kiwis a chance to invest in large New Zealand companies.”

    The 2011 election results?

    National got 59 out of 121 MPs.

    The final vote on the Public Finance (Mixed Ownership Model) Amendment Act 2012, was 61 – 60

    A party vote was called for on the question, That the Public Finance (Mixed Ownership Model) Amendment Bill be now read a third time.

    Ayes 61
    New Zealand National 59; ACT New Zealand 1; United Future 1.

    Noes 60
    New Zealand Labour 34; Green Party 14; New Zealand First 8; Maori Party 3; Mana 1.


    ” UF (United Future) did not specifically campaign for the ‘mixed ownership model for the electricity companies and Air New Zealand’ because it was not UF (United Future)policy”

    [ Pete George – [United Future Dunedin North 2011 candidate[ (16,292) Says: February 15th, 2013 at 10:28 pm]

    In my considered opinion – the voting public of Ohariu were thus effectively misled by United Future and Peter Dunne on the issue of support for the ‘Mixed Ownership Model’ for State-Owned electricity assets and Air New Zealand.

    In my considered opinion, United Future and Peter Dunne SOLD OUT the voting public of Ohariu by voting in support of the Public Finance (Mixed Ownership) Amendment Act 2012.

    Had Peter Dunne kept faith with the voting public of Ohariu – the Public Finance (Mixed Ownership Model) Amendment Bill should have BEEN DEFEATED 60 – 61.

    I thus believe that I am absolutely correct in my statement that THERE IS NO MANDATE FOR ASSET SALES – given that this minority National Government (which DID campaign on asset sales) has only 59 out of 121 MPs.

    Do the maths folks!

    It ISN’T complicated?


    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

  23. Paul 25

    Don Donovan on The Panel today labelled the Asset Sale referendum set up by mischief makers.
    Who is he?.

    • ianmac 25.1

      Yes. Heard that and wondered about his alliegance. Surely he is not a rabid Nat MP using a pseudonam. (sp?)
      Wait! He is now READING his thoughts of the day which is what Bomber got fired for! Unfair!

      • Paul 25.1.1

        Probably one of the worst ever contributions to the Panel.
        Anti asset sales = riffraff.
        And then his ghastly comments on the Roast busters/ rape issue.
        And barely a peep from Mora.

        • Tiger Mountain

          Wait till Morrisey hears this meathead Donovan, appalling stuff to go unchallenged by the host who helped ban Bomber.

          • Paul

            Who is he?
            I’d love to hear a RNZ executive explain why that performance was acceptable…when Bradbury’s was not.

  24. North 26

    Excited by the above comments to listen to The Panel on-demand. Well done Raybon Kan for at least attempting to counter the crashing 90 years outdated Edwardian Don Donovan – referenda should not happen except by order of the government. For God’s Sake !

    Riff-raff ? Fuckwit anachronistic Tory stinker !

    Who picks these dim old dinosaurs ? They give the likes of George Garth a bad name.

  25. photonz 27


    [karol: You were warned. You started it, and you are keeping it going. Now try to say something on topic. People get annoyed that you have started by derailing the tread]

    • photonz 27.1

      I thought I had to go to Sri Lanka to get censored.

      Apparently not.

      [You expect to come over here and abuse and then get upset when you get pulled up on it? Really? – MS]

      [karol: and this can go to open mike too. it adds nothing to the topic under discussion – moved from Nat’s demolition derby]

    • Ian 27.2

      I am becoming very confused. I have not noticed any discussion Off topic. Your tread started so fast it was inevitable your tread would end up off the rails.

      [karol: moving this also to keep the thread in sync]

    • photonz 27.3

      So you tolerate “fuck off shrill” by your people, but criticism very, very mild by comparison is totally censored.


      [lprent: Listen to what the moderators and authors say. When an author tells you to stay on topic of her post then you will stay on the topic of the post. There is no argument. Arguing with a moderator is a simple indicator of a stupid fool….

      If you want to make up your own crap topics then do so in OpenMike – where she kindly moved some of it to.

      Since you don’t want to in the usual spoilt child way of many silly fools with bloated egos and no sense, then :-

      1. you can read the policy where you will note that we only moderate pointless abuse.

      2. learn some manners rather than being a crass fuckwit with bad behaviour

      3. understand that we run this site – you are just a guest.

      You will be allowed to comment on the site after a short but hopefully educational week. You will be subject to my observation about your behaviour for a while. ]

  26. Gatsby 28

    Hi Karol, censoring a comment is a form of the undemocratic ways we are currently trying to fight and this is a first for you. You are no better than the national cronies and their spy agencies for censoring a comment. Allow the readers to decide. A free democracy is one without censorship and those who choose to censor if they disagree with your point of view.

    [karol: the comment said nothing. I have left several comments by photonz, and none say anything much about the topic other than s/he disagrees. They are a thread derail. And that is a way of derailing democratic discussion. The comment I deleted said nothing but disputed my warnings – and you can go to open mike, too.

    This adds nothing to the topic of Nats’ demolition derby and the referendum. If you look at other comments that I’ve replied to, such as Ian’s, you will see I accept and respond to comments that at least have a bit of substance to say about the topic – even though I don’t agree with them]

  27. weka 29

    I seem to be dropping into moderation a lot at the moment. Anyone else getting that?

  28. Lloyd 30

    If you can’t run a convincing argument against right-wingers here you won’t be able to convince the non-voters who are immersed in right wing media telling them that selling all their assets will leave them better off, and will get the government’s books back in credit.
    Listen to the noise from Photonz and learn. You need to know how to cut this guy’s irrelevant arguments into the drivel it is. This is practice, the real world is out electioneering.

    Censorship is almost always self-defeating.

    [karol: this is getting tiresome. This little thread, that adds nothing to the discussion on the topic of the post, is going to open mike. Keep it up, and they will all go in to moderation.]

    • mickysavage 30.1

      I am sorry Lloyd but we seem to have an infestation of tr0lls tonite and photonz has been doing this for the past couple of days.

      Hit and run sort of arguments. Come up with a slogan and say it loudly then go away and not respond to criticism and then come up with another slogan.

      It is really tiring.

      There are not many non voters immersed in right wing media.

      There is nothing to learn from photonz’s arguments. But go ahead and provide an example if you like.

    • Gatsby 30.2

      Completely agree. Censorship is a form of control and completely undemocratic.

      To do it we are no better than the right and those who do it should be ashamed that they preach for democracy but practice the opposite.

      [Oh look a freedom of speech concern troll who suddenly appeared tonight – MS]

  29. Gatsby 31

    Simple question, if you believe in free speech then you would allow posts. If you don’t then you will ban.

    I see on here a guy who is completely right and the rest who are not. I read most posts each day and I feel sad when I see swearing and abuse of those rather than structured debate.

    Freedom of speech is what democracy is built on.

    Do you want a country that is like the old USSR where those who spoke out simply disappeared.

    No we want a country where the government listens to the people and makes choices based on what the public want.

    Dude you should be ashamed to even think about blocking someone’s freedom of speech. If you want a closed forum make this a closed website, to members only if you want it to be open accept what every person has to say and have a robust debate.

    • Te Reo Putake 31.1

      “Simple question, if you believe in free speech then you would allow posts. If you don’t then you will ban.”

      Nope. I think most readers here want intelligent discourse. Trolls don’t contribute to that paradigm, so off with their heads.

      “No we want a country where the government listens to the people and makes choices based on what the public want.”

      Nope again. The public don’t always get it right. Government is about leadership, which can mean being ahead of the public. If not, it would still be legal to beat our children, for example.

      • Gatsby 31.1.1


        [lprent: You picked up a ban for being too stupid to read the policy. Don’t comment again or I will double it. This is a demonstration that those who provide a “free” service can also withdraw it and is part of out continuing education programme.

        Have a nice day 😈 ]

        • Gatsby

          I did just read the policy and I fail to see how my point of view is in breach of it.


          [lprent: You obviously can’t read.

          Similarly, people should read the site policy before commenting on or even worse demanding that our policies should change.

          In case you hadn’t noticed we don’t have a policy for free speech. But we do have a policy against bad behaviour. One of those behaviours is demanding to tell us how we should run our site.

          Ban doubled again to 8 weeks for stupidity. Can you detect a trend here? ]

          • photonz

            But obviously calling people fuckwits isn’t abuse if it’s the moderator doing the abusing.

            [lprent: It is a pretty exact description. See the last sentence in my previous note.

            Tired of toying with such a poor debater… Adding you to auto spam. ]

    • Murray Olsen 31.2

      No one is stopping the idiots from speaking. Freedom of speech doesn’t mean that lprent has to construct a forum for your drivel. You are free to speak wherever else you like. None of us pay to be here. We are all guests and when our welcome runs out, we leave. I have never heard such dribbling on any topic as I have on this bloody freedom of speech. What you really mean is that you want to take advantage of someone else’s hard work for free, and abuse it as you see fit. Doesn’t wash.

      • felix 31.2.1

        “What you really mean is that you want to take advantage of someone else’s hard work for free, and abuse it as you see fit.”

        Well that, and also to fill the thread to the brim with anything but discussion on asset sales…

        • karol

          Yes, felix. That was my main concern last night. Shows some righties are really concerned about the upcoming referendum and want to stifle any mentions of it. And that’s a good reason for doing more posts on it in the near future.


    In response to a question, Mr Brownlee said he found it extraordinary that “someone can sit on the bench of a court in this country and inflict such injustice on so many people.”

    Mr Mills QC says Mr Brownlee’s comments are dangerous.

    “It is the role of judges to make their decisions according to law. For a senior government politician to publicly criticise a judge for fulfilling his constitutional role, and to imply that he ought not to be a judge because he has made a decision that the minister dislikes, is dangerous. The rule of law needs to be recognised and supported by politicians, even when they do not like the results,” Mr Mills says.


    I find it extraordinary that Government Ministers like ‘Leader of the House’ Mr Brownlee can sit in Cabinet in this country and inflict such injustice on so many people.

    Like railroading through Parliament the NZ International Convention Centre Bill, with NO ‘due diligence’ on the increased risk of money-laundering at Sky City?

    Penny Bright

  31. Draco T Bastard 33

    18 signs that economists haven’t the foggiest

    Considering that economists seem to get so much wrong, why do we still follow their delusional prescription?

  32. photonz 34

    The Standard Policy says, quote…

    “We encourage robust debate and we’re tolerant of dissenting views. But this site run for reasonably rational debate between dissenting viewpoints and we intend to keep it operating that way.

    What we’re not prepared to accept are pointless personal attacks, or tone or language that has the effect of excluding others.”

    Moderator lprent says

    “. you can read the policy where you will note that we only moderate pointless abuse.”
    ” you “pious fuckwit”
    ” learn some manners rather than being a crass fuckwit with bad behaviour”
    “You picked up a ban for being too stupid to read the policy. ”

    These are direct quotes of the site own policy and moderators comments.

    Will they censor and ban a message that only has their own quotes?

    [lprent: I’d have said that my personal attack did rather have a point to it. The mere fact you don’t like it is neither here nor there.

    And perhaps you should read the whole policy rather than just the bits you want to. In particular the section about banning might be relevant? It lists the behaviours that we will ban on. Wasting moderators time is pretty damn high in the list. In your case you caused moderators to have to repeat themselves about being off topic, caused comments to be moved to OpenMike, and caused me effort cleaning up the comment stream using SQL. Frankly you got off lightly.

    Ban doubled to 2 weeks for stupidly wasting my time. ]

    • photonz 34.1


      You’re the most personally abusive person here, so lecturing people on obeying your rues is the epitome of hypocrisy.

      [lprent: There is no policy about abuse on the site, There is one about “pointless abuse” which is whole different beast.

      I always explain exactly why I’m issuing the abuse and try to make the abuse fit my points, usually in extraordinary detail. The detail is usually there because it is in fact more insulting than the “abuse”. However I often have to put the pointed abuse in there as well to cope with individuals of limited intelligence like yourself. Being subtle is often not effective on such fools because they tend to ignore anything that is more subtle than a penis surrogate club.

      Ban doubled to 8 weeks for having to take the time to explain this to someone who thinks with their dick… ]


  33. tricledrown 35

    photonz labour didn’t secretly sell assets Michael Cullen clearly stated that because Air NZ needed to borrow to buy new aircraft that borrowing would lead to a watering down of govt ownership.
    It was widely reported at the time.
    you have 8 weeks to do some research and get your facts right before you comment!

  34. lprent 36

    My project at work is released. I now have a few days of “holiday” aka household chores like putting all screens in the apartment on monitor arms; both the TV and the computer monitors.

    But I will be sneaking in a few upgrades here as well. The first one went in tonight, more web servers to spread the peak loads. I’ll be interested to see how this performs in the morning.

  35. King Kong 37

    See, you should of listened to me during the almost pornographic lovefest that took place here after he became leader.

    I told you he was a narcissistic a-hole who would sell his mother for power and only now some of you are waking up to that.

    [karol: this is starting to look like yet another thread derail. Amazing how righties here don’t want to talk about the topic of the post. I want to send this comment to Open Mike, but that might risk throwing the comments out of sync – so, in the first instance, it’s going in to moderation]

    [lprent: That looks like a deliberate derail attempt to me as well. Nothing to do with the post.
    If I see him do it again then I will look at how many months I will ban him for. ]

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    The Question Christopher Luxon Needs To Ask –  And Answer: How was it possible for a nation of barely three million citizens to create and maintain an infrastructure that functioned, schools and universities that turned out well-educated and enterprising citizens, a health system that kept its people healthy, and a workforce ...
    5 days ago
  • The limits to realism.
    Realism is a school of thought in the field of international relations (IR). It provides a theoretical framework for analysing the behaviour of States in the world political system. Like other theories (which in the IR literature include idealism, liberalism, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • UNSOCIAL MEDIA – Following the Trolls
    From TODAY FM archives — Wilhelmina Shrimpton and Simon Morrow take a deep dive into trolling and cyberbullying. From the high profile to the general public, Kiwis across all walks of life are being targeted, and some are paying the ultimate price. So what drives us to troll, who is ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    5 days ago
  • Govt prescribes stiff medicine for some beneficiaries while easing access to drugs containing pseudo...
    Buzz from the Beehive One of two new announcements on the government’s official website  – given plenty of publicity by the mainstream media over the past 24 hours – has been pitched as the first steps in a “reset” of the welfare system.  Stiff medicine for beneficiaries, in effect. The ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • We’re not as fragile or as lazy as Luxon says
    Luxon says his government is one that is “prepared to make those hard decisions”. File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has adopted the language of Ruth Richardson before her 1991 ‘Mother of All Budgets’ in arguing for benefit sanctions to bolster the Government finances, which ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Talking over the Silence.
    Please open the doorNothing is different, we've been here beforePacing these hallsTrying to talk over the silenceIf I was to describe what I do, or at least the way it sometimes feels, then talking over the silence wouldn’t be a bad way to do so.Not that there aren’t other voices ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • LINDSAY MITCHELL: National needs to go further
    Lindsay Mitchell writes – In today’s State of the Nation speech Christopher Luxon talked repeatedly about getting young people off welfare. It seems that National has devised a traffic light system which will use increasing levels of sanctions – welfare deductions – when beneficiaries fail to meet their ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National spreading panic about the economy
    It is a political strategy as old as time. Scare the public with tales of disaster and stampede them into supporting your ideological agenda because they believe There Is No Alternative. Yet, if the NZ economy truly is as “fragile” as PM Christopher Luxon says it is… Then how come ...
    5 days ago
  • The promise of passive house design
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Sarah Wesseler Imagine a home so efficient that it could be heated with a hair dryer. That’s the promise of a passive house, a design standard that’s becoming increasingly popular in the architecture community for its benefits to occupants and the climate. ...
    5 days ago
  • Deep in the Uncanny Valley of AI
    Hi,Before we get started, some very big fun Webworm news. I am launching a new journalism fund called Big Worm Farm!A really great thing that’s happened with Webworm over the last four years is that it’s grown. That’s great for a few reasons.Firstly — it means the work here gets ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Introducing: Big Worm Farm
    Hi,I’m excited to tell you about Big Worm Farm.Put simply, the main aim of Big Worm Farm is to support investigative journalists from around the world to be able to devote dedicated time to research and report on a specific story, to be published on Webworm.The stories will capture the ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Why Massey is broke
    The Tertiary Education Commission has named the two universities it says are at high risk financially. They are Massey and Victoria. The Commission appeared before Parliament’s Education Select Committee yesterday and offered a revealing and rare insight into the complex world of university economics. Its Briefing to the Incoming Minister ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • You keep Luxin' when you oughta be thruthin'
    Christopher Luxon’s campaign to win last year's election continued yesterday with a speech.Channelling possibly Bruce Willis in Die Hard, he was all, I'm not going to dress it up, I'm going to level with you guys: the state of the nation is fragile.The thing he’s maybe missing is that it ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • The PM spoke of the need for tough choices – and then opted to beat a retreat when gays and Gaza a...
    Buzz from the Beehive The PM’s State of the Nation speech – according to a Newshub headline – was a ‘buffet of buzzwords’ and full of ‘nonsense’. Fair to say, the quoted words were attributed to Opposition politicians, who were unlikely to say the speech was visionary and inspiring: PM ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • Keynesian Wisdom.
    When the facts change, I change my mind - what do you do, sir?John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946)This posting is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    6 days ago
  • BRIAN EASTON: Puffing policy
    Public policy towards tobacco consumption remains politically sensitive. Brian Easton writes – In 1983, a young researcher was told by a medium-level Treasury official that Treasury policy was to abandon excise duties on tobacco. The senior Treasury economist that I consulted, famed for his commonsense, snorted ‘we ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Is 2.8% per year population growth too much?
    TL;DR: The Government is reviewing migration settings that produced 2.8% population growth last year and is looking at a longer-term strategy of matching population growth to the ‘absorbtive capacity’ of Aotearoa-NZ’s infrastructure.Our population grew last year at its fastest rate since 1947, when large numbers of troops returning from World ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Tough Choices & Tough Love.
    I've been trying to hurt youI've been holding you tightI've been learning to love youAm I doing it right?How are you still breathingWith my hands all over your heart?How do we start healingIf we can't keep out the dark?Yesterday the Prime Minister delivered his State of the Nation, for no ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Will the 2024 RLTP be yet another debacle?
    A couple of years ago, Auckland Council and Auckland Transport found themselves in court over the 2021 Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP). A non-profit alliance for transport decarbonisation, All Aboard Aotearoa, argued that among other factors, the RLTP was unlawful because it failed to give effect to the 2021 Government ...
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #07
    A listing of 31 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, Feb 11, 2024 thru Sat, Feb 17, 2024. Story of the week Based on mission alignment, our Story of the Week is certainly Can we be inoculated against climate ...
    7 days ago
  • Immigration Issues.
    Help is comingI heard a whisperWhite caps turningThe breath of summerA distant drummingAnd liar birds callingEscape the anguish of our pastAnd prayOne of the major challenges of the the 21st century will be the mass migration of human beings around our globe.Some seeking economic opportunities, others fleeing repressive regimes, war ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Trust us, we know what we’re doing
    The best trick the National Party ever pulled was to fabricate their reputation as the responsible ones.This would be the National Party that denied us the New Zealand Superannuation Scheme that—Brian Gaynor wrote back in 2007would be worth more than $240 billion today and would have transformed the New Zealand ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • The Left’s Timidity
    It is not just Karl Marx – even the most enthusiastic supporters of the market economy (not least Adam Smith) will concede that its normal operation inevitably leads to a concentration of wealth in relatively few hands. Some, at least, of these enthusiasts will accept that such a concentration is ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • OLIVER HARTWICH: Absurd – NZ courts can now decide on climate change
    Oliver Hartwich writes – The World Justice Project ranks New Zealand 7th out of 142 countries on its ‘Rule of Law Index’, narrowly ahead of Australia’s 13th place. However, Australia still has hope – if only because of a recent decision by the Supreme Court of New Zealand. The ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 week ago
  • Still waiting on that turnaround
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past week’s editions.Friday: Week in review, quiz style2. Shane Jones’ demeanour in mocking and deriding climate activists can be observed in what other realm of human behaviour?a. Gleeful little boys pulling wings off fliesb. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Can we be inoculated against climate misinformation? Yes – if we prebunk rather than debunk
    This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article written by Christian Turney, University of Technology Sydney and Sander van der Linden, University of Cambridge and first published on February 14, 2024. Adrien Demers/Shutterstock Last year, the world experienced the hottest day ...
    1 week ago
  • Mihi Forbes and the great Atlas conspiracy
    Graham Adams writes — Last week, Mihingarangi Forbes made an extraordinary claim while interviewing David Seymour on Mata Reports, a taxpayer-funded current affairs programme which, she says, looks at events through an “indigenous lens”. She asked him about Act’s links to the Atlas Network, which fosters connections between centre-right ...
    Point of OrderBy gadams1000
    1 week ago
  • Puffing Policy
    Public policy towards tobacco consumption remains politically sensitive. In 1983, a young researcher was told by a medium-level Treasury official that Treasury policy was to abandon excise duties on tobacco. The senior Treasury economist that I consulted, famed for his commonsense, snorted ‘we need the money’. He explained that no-excise-duty ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago

  • Government backs police to crackdown on gangs
    The coalition Government is restoring law and order by providing police new tools to crack down on criminal gangs, says Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Police Minister Mark Mitchell.  “Over the last five years gangs have recruited more than 3000 members, a 51 per cent increase. At the same time, ...
    3 hours ago
  • Northland’s new Kāeo Bridge officially open
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed the official opening of the new State Highway 10 (SH10) Kāeo Bridge, which will improve safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Far North. “This is an important piece of infrastructure for the Northland region that will help members of ...
    1 day ago
  • Dry weather triggers extra support for farmers and growers across the top of the South Island
    The coalition Government is providing support for farmers and growers as dry conditions worsen across the top of the South Island. “Conditions on the ground across the Marlborough, Tasman, and Nelson districts are now extremely dry and likely to get worse in the coming months,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said. ...
    2 days ago
  • Trade Minister heads to Abu Dhabi for key WTO negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay travels to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates for the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) today, to take up his role as Vice Chair of the negotiations. The Ministerial Conference is the highest decision-making body within the WTO and meets every ...
    2 days ago
  • Appointment round for King’s Counsel announced
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced an appointment round for King’s Counsel will take place in 2024. Appointments of King’s Counsel are made by the Governor-General on the recommendation of the Attorney-General and with the concurrence of the Chief Justice. The Governor-General retains the discretion to appoint King’s Counsel in recognition ...
    2 days ago
  • Retiring Chief of Navy thanked for his service
    Defence Minister Judith Collins has thanked the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Proctor, for his service as he retires from the Royal New Zealand Navy after 37 years. Rear Admiral Proctor will retire on 16 May to take up an employment opportunity in Australia.  “I would like to thank ...
    2 days ago
  • Indonesian Vice President to visit New Zealand
    Indonesia’s Vice President Ma’ruf Amin will visit New Zealand next week, the first here by an Indonesian leader since 2018, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters has announced. “New Zealand and Indonesia have a strong partnership,” Mr Peters says.  “The Vice President’s visit is an opportunity to discuss how we can strengthen ...
    2 days ago
  • Government boost to fight against caulerpa
    The battle to contain the fast-spreading exotic caulerpa seaweed has today received a $5 million boost to accelerate the development of removal techniques, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The time is now to really lean in and build on the work of Biosecurity New Zealand, mana whenua, communities and local ...
    2 days ago
  • Minister attending Australian data, digital meeting
    Minister for Digitising Government Judith Collins is in Sydney to attend the first Data and Digital Ministers’ Meeting of 2024.  “This is a great opportunity to connect with our Australian counterparts and identify how we can work together on digital transformation,” Ms Collins says.   “Both our nations are looking into ...
    3 days ago
  • Appointments to Antarctica New Zealand Board
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has appointed Leon Grice and Heather Simpson to serve on the Antarctica New Zealand board.  “Since taking office, the Coalition Government has become concerned about the direction of the Scott Base Redevelopment Project,” Mr Peters says.  “It is vital that Antarctica New Zealand has the right ...
    3 days ago
  • Strengthening the Single Economic Market
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis has met with Australian Treasurer Jim Chalmers to discuss the opportunities to lower business costs and increase the ease with which businesses and people can operate across the Tasman.     “I have met with Treasurer Chalmers and shared our new Government’s ambitious economic goals, our plans ...
    3 days ago
  • Government to address business payment practices
    The Government will repeal the Business Payment Practices Act 2023, Small Business and Manufacturing Minister Andrew Bayly announced today. “There is a major problem with large market players imposing long payment terms and routinely paying invoices late. “However, the Business Payment Practices Act is not an effective solution and would ...
    3 days ago
  • Greater focus on work will reduce child poverty
    Worsening child poverty rates support the Coalition Government’s focus on reducing the cost of living and getting people into work, Child Poverty Reduction Minister Louise Upston says. Figures released by Stats NZ today show child poverty rates have increased, with the rising cost of living, driven by inflation, making it ...
    3 days ago
  • NZ announces new support for Ukraine
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have marked two years since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by announcing further support and sanctions, and extending our military assistance. “Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter,” Mr Peters says. ...
    3 days ago
  • Finance Minister to meet Australian Treasurer
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis will travel to Australia today to meet her Australian counterpart, Treasurer Jim Chalmers.    “New Zealand and Australia have an incredibly strong trade and investment relationship. The Closer Economic Relations and Single Economic Market are powerful engines for growth on both sides of the Tasman.     “I will ...
    3 days ago
  • PM shocked and saddened at death of Efeso Collins
    “I am truly shocked and saddened at the news of Efeso Collins’ sudden death,” Prime Minister Christopher Luxon says. “Efeso was a good man, always friendly and kind, and a true champion and advocate for his Samoan and South Auckland communities. “Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go to his family, ...
    4 days ago
  • Greater support for social workers
    The Coalition Government is enhancing the professionalism of the social work sector and supporting the vulnerable people who rely on them, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says.  The Social Workers Registration Legislation Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament today. It amends the Social Workers Registration Legislation ...
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers greater freedom and choice for sick New Zealanders
    The coalition government is delivering on its commitment to making principled decisions by getting rid of red tape that doesn’t make sense and allowing sick New Zealanders greater freedom and choice to purchase effective cold and flu medicines. A bill amending the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975 is being introduced, and changes to the Medicines ...
    5 days ago
  • Government begins reset of welfare system
    The Coalition Government is taking early action to curb the surge in welfare dependency that occurred under the previous government by setting out its expectations around employment and the use of benefit sanctions, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. In 2017, 60,588 sanctions were applied to beneficiaries who ...
    6 days ago
  • State of the Nation
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora, good morning, talofa, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, da jia hao, namaste, sat sri akal, assalamu alaikum. Thank you for coming to my first State of the Nation as Prime Minister. Thank you for coming to a speech where I don’t just ...
    1 week ago
  • West Coast tourism attractions officially open
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will attend the official opening of two highly anticipated tourism projects on the West Coast today – Pike29 Memorial Track, dedicated to the memory of the Pike River miners, and Pounamu Pathway. “The Pike29 Memorial Track is a way to remember and honour the men ...
    1 week ago
  • Independent ferry service advisory group in place
    Appointments to the Ministerial Advisory Group tasked with providing independent advice and assurance on the future of KiwiRail’s inter-island ferry service have been made, State Owned Enterprises Minister Paul Goldsmith says. “It’s important for New Zealand that KiwiRail is focused on ensuring safe, resilient, and reliable ferry services over the ...
    1 week ago
  • Joint statement from the Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand
    The Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada and New Zealand today issued the following statement on reports of Israel’s planned military operation in Rafah. We are gravely concerned by indications that Israel is planning a ground offensive into Rafah.   A military operation into Rafah would be catastrophic. About 1.5 million Palestinians ...
    1 week ago
  • Govt will deliver on expanded breast screening
    The coalition Government has made the first steps in delivering on its promise to  extend free breast screening to women aged 70-74, Health Minister Shane Reti says. “As part of the 100 day plan, the Government has now met with officials and discussed what is needed in order for the ...
    1 week ago
  • Government announces woolshed roadshows in support of sheep farmers
    The Government celebrates National Lamb Day (15 February 24) and congratulates sheep farmers on the high-quality products they continue to produce. Agriculture Minister McClay hosted bipartisan celebrations of National Lamb Day with industry representatives at Parliament this week to mark the anniversary of the first frozen lamb exports that left ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech: Address to the NZ Economics Forum
    It’s great to be back at the New Zealand Economics Forum. I would like to acknowledge everyone here today for your expertise and contribution, especially the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Head of the Waikato Management School, economists, students and experts alike. A year has passed since I was last before you, and ...
    1 week ago
  • Government tackling high construction costs
    The Government is focused on reducing sky-high construction costs to make it more affordable to build a home, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says.  Stats NZ data shows the cost of building a house has increased by 41 per cent since 2019, making housing even more unaffordable for Kiwi ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Three Waters legislation repealed
    The Coalition Government’s legislative plan to address longstanding issues with local water infrastructure and service delivery took an important step today, with the repeal of Labour’s divisive and unpopular Three Waters legislation, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Repealing this legislation is a necessary first step in implementing our Local ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Cost of living support for beneficiary households
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its commitment to ease the cost-of-living by increasing main benefit rates in line with inflation and ensuring the Minimum Family Tax Credit threshold remains aligned with this change, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. The Social Security (Benefits Adjustment) and Income Tax ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government announces agriculture delegations to better support Primary sector
    The coalition Government has announced ministerial delegations to support key areas across the Primary sector to deliver for New Zealand’s food and fibre sector, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced today. “I will be supported in my roles as Minister of Agriculture, Trade, Forestry and Hunting and Fishing, by three Associate ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Waikato MoU reinforces Govt’s commitment to increase NZ doctors
    The Government has taken an important step forward in addressing a critical shortage of New Zealand-trained doctors, with today’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding for a third medical school, Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti has announced.  “Today’s signing by the Ministry of Health and the University of Waikato ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech – Lunar New Year 2024
    Annyeonghaseyo, greetings and welcome all. It is my pleasure as the Minister for Ethnic Communities to welcome you to the first Lunar New Year Event in Parliament. Thank you to our emcees for greeting us in the different languages that represent the many cultures that celebrate the Lunar New Year. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More funding to Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti
    Urgent work to clean-up cyclone-affected regions will continue, thanks to a $63 million boost from the Government for sediment and debris removal in Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti.                                                                                                   The funding will help local councils continue urgent work removing and disposing of sediment and debris left from Cyclone Gabrielle.   “This additional ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget will be delivered on 30 May
    Plans to deliver tax relief to hard-working New Zealanders, rebuild business confidence and restore the Crown’s finances to order will be unveiled on 30 May, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says. The plans will be announced in the Budget which is currently being developed by Ministers.  “The last government’s mismanagement of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government advances Local Water Done Well
    The Coalition Government is continuing work to restore council ownership and control of water assets by repealing Three Waters and appointing a Technical Advisory Group to provide expert advice on the implementation of Local Water Done Well, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “The Government will pass a bill to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister congratulates NZQA Top Scholars
    Education Minister Erica Stanford congratulates the New Zealand Scholarship recipients from 2023 announced today.  “Receiving a New Zealand Scholarship is a fantastic achievement and is a testament to the hard work and dedication the recipients have put in throughout the year,” says Ms Stanford.  “New Zealand Scholarship tests not only ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has today announced five new diplomatic appointments.  "Strong and effective diplomacy to protect and advance our interests in the world is needed now more than ever," Mr Peters says.  “We are delighted to appoint senior diplomats from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade to these ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the Committee for Auckland
    It is great to be here today at this event as Minister for Auckland and Minister ofTransport. Let me start by acknowledging each one of you and thanking the Committee forAuckland for hosting this event and inviting me to speak here today. The Committee for Auckland has been a symbol ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Getting Transport Back on Track in Auckland
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has today confirmed his high-level transport priorities for Auckland, in the lead up to releasing the draft Government Policy Statement on Land Transport. “Our economic growth and productivity are underpinned by a transport network that enables people and freight to move around safely and efficiently. At ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government to axe Auckland Regional Fuel Tax
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has confirmed that the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax will end on 30 June 2024. “Today, I can confirm that the Government has agreed to remove the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax in line with our coalition commitments, and legislation will be introduced to parliament to repeal the ...
    2 weeks ago

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