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Open mike 20/04/2010

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 20th, 2010 - 32 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

It’s open for discussing topics of interest, making announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

Comment on whatever takes your fancy.

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

Step right up to the mike…

32 comments on “Open mike 20/04/2010 ”

  1. Pascal's bookie 1

    Ya reckon Britain has had it’s pound of flesh out of Iceland yet?

  2. mach1 2

    I know Californian cities have been deep in it for quite some time but WTF


    • prism 2.1

      Unions can be as unfair and unreasonable as the moneyed class if they get a lot of power and leaders who enjoy pushing past reasonable limits. This Californian story shows humans in steam-roller mode, just a change in the faces on the machine.

      “the unions quickly mastered confrontational techniques like the “rolling strike,’ in which groups of workers walk off jobs at unannounced times, and the “blue flu,’ in which public-safety workers call in sick en masse.”

  3. Sanctuary 3

    This sort of reporting gets on my goat – http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10639513

    “Wellington-based Trade Me founder and philanthropist Sam Morgan says he doesn’t pay tax.

    “I pay basically no tax,” said the entrepreneur, who founded Trade Me in 1999 and sold it in 2006 to Australian publisher Fairfax for more than $700 million…”

    Sam Morgan isn’t a philanthropist, nor is he an entrepreneur. He is a aristocratic, rentier, parasite bestowing amounts of money considerably less than the tax he should be paying on what he thinks is deserving causes.

    It is illegal to deliberately set out to avoid paying tax in New Zealand. Based on his own utterances, the IRD should immediately launch a prosecution of Mr. Morgan.

    • luva 3.1

      Exhibit A for why the tax system needs restructuring.

      Forget about the ‘axe the tax’ rubbish the so called opposition has been wasting their time on. We need a sensible debate on how we fix the silly system we currently have where the Sam Morgan’s of this nation can legally pay less tax then someone with 5% of his wealth.

      • Tigger 3.1.1

        Why doesn’t he offer to pay a reasonable amount of capital gains tax on his windfall? Then I’d believe he really cares. At the moment he’s all talk.

    • Actually he explains in the interview that he legally does not have to pay tax according to New Zealand law and that he thinks that is unjust.

      So before you go off on a huff perhaps you should read said article first.

      ( I never thought I’d be defending a stinking rich dude but there you have it, the man actually complained about not having to pay tax)


      I see that the editor is expanding in possibilities and that is great. Would you consider enabling xhtml tags for images or video’s?

    • prism 3.3

      Right thinking philanthropists pay Caesar first and give out of their discretionary money.

  4. I feel unclean.

    I just listened to Murray McCully on morning report. He is turning upside down organisations relying on overseas aid by withdrawing Government officials from meetings scheduled for next week to discuss this year’s funding round. The Government was co-hosting the meetings! Go figure.

    The groups do not know what the changes will be. Their inability to meet with Government officials has increased tension for them and means they cannot plan. It is possible their programs will fall over.

    When McCully was interviewed the one thing he mentioned was that some of the organisations had “political agendas” and concentrated on “trade union rights”. He wants them to concentrate on assistance for the poor instead. As if improving the plight of poorly paid workers would not improve things. His antipathy to the trade union movement is palpable.

    He also wants the fund to be used for disaster relief. My understanding is that grants for relief, for instance the recent grants for Samoa, are discrete amounts not taken from the overseas aid budget. Spending this money on disaster relief will mean less help for the poor.

    He claimed that the changes were in National’s policy for the last election and therefore mandated.

    He was then asked about the Governments adoption of the declaration for the rights of Indigenous People. He had previously claimed a mandate for making the change to the provision of aid. When asked if National supporters would agree to the change he ducked. He said that he was not going to interpret what National party supporters wanted, despite having done so about 1 minute beforehand.

    Franz Kafka is alive and well in New Zealand.

  5. Sanctuary 5

    Update: Sam Morgan thinks the current tax system is unfair. Clearly, That gives His Majesty Lord Morgan of Wellington the imperial right to opt out until he personally decides he agrees with the tax system…

  6. exbrethren 6

    Didn’t realise that Nick Smith sacked ECan in part as family retribution http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/3599250/ECan-sacking-right-decision

    • toad 6.1

      Tim Smith:

      Smith has pleaded guilty to 21 charges brought by ECan, whose councillors were sacked by Nick Smith and Local Government Minister Rodney Hide last month.

      Tim Smith and his company will be sentenced on the ECan charges, and another 12 charges brought by the city council over fencing and bund issues, in June.

      Smith was last week fined $16,000 on charges brought by the city council for failing to have a building consent for a relocatable site shed, which he said was stored temporarily at the company’s 10-hectare Christchurch yard.

      The ECan prosecution followed a police-accompanied inspection at the company’s Harewood yard last June, around the same time as Nick Smith was calling ECan “hopeless” in Parliament.

      Tim Smith said he used more colourful language.

      “I told them their organisation was bloody hopeless and they were all useless bastards who should be sacked,” he said.

      “I also told them that with some luck my brother and Rodney Hide would do something about it.

      Not a good look, as Double Dipton would say.

      • mickysavage 6.1.1

        Wow, the brother of a Minister says that a prosecuting authority should be sacked and with a bit of luck his brother who is a minister and Wodney will do something about it … and they do.

        Did I wake up in Zimbabwe?

        Capcha Hide, how weird is that!

    • prism 6.2

      Interesting attitudes and work interests of politicians’ relatives – Nick Smith and family story reported by ace Martin Van Beynen. Bill English has brother heavily into Federated Farmers.

      captcha suspicion

    • rainman 6.3

      Wow. That stinks, even for Smith.

  7. Jenny 7

    Time for an FTT?

    Rather than increasing GST which increases the tax burden on poorer Kiwis, and lets the rich off the hook. Tax justice demands immediate implementation of a Financial Transactions Tax.

    Even (a few) rich would agree:

    Trade me founder says tax burden falls on workers


    What say you Phil?

  8. Tigger 8


    So if the UN Declaration is only symbolic does this make it yet another flag for the MP to wave – looks like an advancement but ultimately meaningless.

    And Mr Key, way to kick Sharples in the nuts mere moments after he’s managed to get this from you.

    • Ianmac 8.1

      Interesting that John Key said Peta Sharples trip was kept secret so that “it wouldn’t steal his thunder.” What thunder was it when John Key’s trip to USA was so loudly trumpeted?
      Sad that it will not make a bit of difference to Maori Rights, unless it gives “Maori full rights over their traditional lands.” Customary rights on Seabed Seashore?

      • Tigger 8.1.1

        Of course, this is why National has given the MP the go ahead here. We’ll let you do this but you have to promise you’ll quell any moves to have it mean anything. Key calling is ‘symbolic’ is meaningful – symbols are nice but they’re not worth much on the open market.

  9. Ianmac 9

    Sam Morgan was making a point about the ridiculous nature of our tax system where a very very rich person can pay almost no tax. I think that he is an honest brave man. He didn’t have to say anything.
    Which makes me wonder about people like John Key. I suppose he pays some tax on his PM salary but what would he pay on $50,000,000? Sickening when John Key makes the statement about the poor cleaner working long hours and paying tax to support lazy students. He could have said that there are some very rich people who pay little tax which leaves the job for cleaners!
    What a pity that IRD does not leak!

  10. gobsmacked 10

    It’s all on in the UK: Lib Dems up 10% in a week.


    The Tories are doing the headless chicken. Not long ago, they were “home and hosed” (to quote the soothsayer called DPF). Their victory was as certain as … well, John Key’s next year. Can’t possibly lose.

    Hello Pride, meet Fall. Love it!

  11. Pascal's bookie 11

    We had a visit a wee while back from some creationists..

    Pharyngula points to this today, and as he says, it isn’t exactly “Letter from a Birmingham Jail. But MLK wasn’t anywhere near so funny either.

    background info: the creationist author of the linked piece is currently sitting in jail for fraud, tax evasion and suchlike.

  12. big bruv 12

    What have you guys got to say about this disgusting story?


    Is this typical behaviour for Labour party MP’s?

    • Bill 12.1


      What you got to say regarding my question to you here which you have apparently run away from?


      • big bruv 12.1.1

        No, no…lets come back to the original question, is this normal behaviour for your rainbow MP’s?

      • felix 12.1.2

        bruv is notorious for running away from questions. He’s the Dom Jolly of the blogs. You won’t get an answer.

  13. prism 13

    I was listening to Allie someone from Homepaddock blog talking to Jim Mora. She classes The Standard as rabid left and said that Kiwiblog was the most popular. After looking at the goulter story discussion I see where the rabid right hang out.

    • Bill 13.1

      I heard all that too and thought about commenting at the time, but couldn’t stop laughing.

      A Tory bint using her 2 minutes of fame to do aKiwi blog/ Nat Party political broadcast…fucking laughably pathetic.

      Let me put it this way. If the standard is rabid left, then I’m..what?,,,ultra rabid bitey dog of children left?

      • gingercrush 13.1.1

        Its Ele Lundemann. She’s National’s Southern Regional Chair. And while I don’t think she’s completely right with her assessment of The Standard. The fact is many of the writers here are well blunt and don’t pull punches. Not neccessarily a bad thing. But for many it can be a turn-off. And considering her politics its no wonder that’s how she assess The Standard.

        • lprent

          Yeah, neither politeness or manners are a criteria of behaviour here. I never quite understood that particular way of thinking so beloved of some people. Always just seemed like a way of quietly hiding things to me. But that is the National party way as far as I can see.

          • Pascal's bookie

            Always just seemed like a way of quietly hiding things to me.

            ‘Thers’ at whiskey fire has quite a lot say on this civility business.

      • prism 13.1.2

        Bill You can’t be an attack dog – I think Richard Prebble still owns the ‘mad dog’ tag. Think of something else, see you later alligator bill, or pelican bill that would be funny. A bill full of ideas and fishing for answers.

        And gingercrush it’s just so middle class, so smarmy to blame occasional, strong, direct language as a turn off and excuse to call passionate, critical people discussing politics and trying for a better run New Zealand – the rabid left.

        While it is amusing to use the duck analogy when explaining what energy is being put out ‘Moving like a duck, calm and unruffled on the surface, and paddling like hell underneath’, style and appearance shouldn’t be the most important thing when worrying at policy influencing our country and our lives.

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