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Open mike 21/04/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 21st, 2016 - 50 comments
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openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

50 comments on “Open mike 21/04/2016 ”

  1. Gangnam Style 1


    Bill Liu number 5 on Chinas extradition list.


    Dodgy Shane Jones, Sky City money laundering, political donations to both Labour & National, Tax Havens, …

    • Penny Bright 1.1

      “….When it launched the campaign, the Chinese Government estimated that 16,000 to 18,000 corrupt officials and employees of state-owned enterprises had fled with pilfered assets of more than 800 billion yuan ($166 billion) since the mid-1990s. …”

      Gosh – I wonder where exactly these corrupt Chinese officials and employees of state-owned enterprises have stashed their ‘pilfered assets’?

      In New Zealand ‘foreign trusts’ – perchance?

      Penny Bright
      2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  2. North 2

    How low can we go ?

    $100,000 donation to the National Party. Soon thereafter the donor or a connected party is benefitted with access to/gift of/advantage from government funds 70 fold of that donation.

    Well…….unless from day one you’ve got proof beyond a shadow of doubt that what looks and quacks like a duck is a duck…….you must say nothing. Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

    The perfect climate in which corruption balloons. In this land of “Higher Standards”.

  3. Penny Bright 3

    It ain’t over till it’s over ….

    30 April 2015 – Bernie Sanders announces he’s standing for President.

    (That was less than a year ago.)


    “In interviews before his campaign announcement, Sanders said trade, income inequality and health care would be key tenants of his run.

    But despite having vocal liberal supporters on these issues, Sanders is a dark horse candidate and has acknowledged that his run will be uphill.

    A CNN/ORC poll in March found that Sanders has the support of only 3% of Democratic voters.

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  4. Rodel 4

    AL this morning on RNZ. No BS- just , ‘Here are the facts and because of these facts he’d like the AG to investigate:
    – welcomed the Hagaman’s willingness to cooperate in any inquiry
    -and yes he’s been threatened with court action by rich people many times before
    -and he dismissed the attempts by Natz to distract.
    A good solid interview .

    I think ‘McCullygate’ has a better ring than ‘Hagamangate’ or is it ‘Mc Gillicuddy?’

  5. Tautoko Mangō Mata 5

    Jane Kelsey’s press release yesterday titled Why is the US TPPA ‘Implementation Team’ Meddling in NZ? highlights the ways in which US gets what it wants from other TPP countries. http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1604/S00278/why-is-the-us-tppa-implementation-team-meddling-in-nz.htm

    This process was foreshadowed and objected to in an open letter dated 15 May 2015. The signatories from Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, and New Zealand include prominent former parliamentarians as well as current leaders of political parties, spokespersons for trade, and members of committees with responsibility for the TPP.

    As current and former legislators with responsibility for making the laws for our countries we are gravely concerned about the potential for the Government of the United States of America to apply the process known as ‘certification’ to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.
    In the implementing bills of its recent past Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), the US
    government has included a requirement to withhold implementation of that agreement until the other government has satisfied the US understanding of that country’s obligations under the agreement by changing its laws, regulations and procedures to satisfy the US demands. Until it has done so, the United States will not complete the exchange of letters with that country, which is necessary to bring the agreement into force between them.
    In past US FTAs, this has resulted in the United States extracting additional concessions from countries, its officials drafting the other country’s laws, agreements going into effect at different times for different countries, and lengthy delays in trade pacts’ implementation for some countries.
    If applied to the TPP, this practice would infringe on the sovereignty of our governments to determine the meaning and extent of the obligations they have agreed to and adopted under the TPP; it would impugn the constitutional authority and responsibility of legislatures and lawmakers; and it would constitute interference by a foreign government in the sovereignty of our countries.


    • save NZ 5.1

      +1 Tautoko Mangō Mata

    • ianmac 5.2

      Just sent a letter to the Editor for our local paper.
      The Government is delaying the adding of a levy or royalty on bottled water being exported by foreign owned companies. By procrastinating until after the TPPA is ratified, they will then be unwilling or unable to levy, even if they wanted to, as those foreign companies would sue NZ for millions and millions. This brings the complicated TPPA documents into the real world.

  6. Gangnam Style 6

    “Hagaman was honoured as a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to business.” 2014 http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/christchurch-life/9725378/Hagamans-building-an-empire

    ” ” Should we even believe that he is worth $180m? The NBR wrote of the couple that “all of their wealth is tied up in trusts, which means they are, personally, as poor as church mice”. Lani Hagaman likes that bit about church mice.
    “The trusts hold most of the wealth,” Hagaman says. “If you own it personally, somebody will try to take it away, for sure.
    “I had an ex-wife problem a while back. It’s all settled now. She got half and claimed she was entitled to more. I paid her a sum to go, and she went.” ”

    & ” Of course it was good news that the Government opted not to green light a new ferry terminal at Clifford Bay, which could have killed off Picton.

    “Fabulous news,” she says. “[Transport Minister] Gerry Brownlee and I have had many conversations about that. Every time I got in his ear, I said: ‘You have to be kidding.’ ”

    Political influence? It’s not that far-fetched. The Hagamans have been big contributors to both National and ACT. Ten years ago, ACT gave Hagaman a Sir Roger Douglas Award for his continuing support.

    “I’ve supported Sir Roger pretty much from day one,” he says. “He’s got good, solid ideas about what the economy ought to be doing, how it ought to be run and whatnot.”
    He says he doesn’t recall exactly how much he has given to the party over the years. Only one $10,000 donation is recorded under his name since 1996. The support continues – even the ACT website is sponsored by the Scenic Hotel Group. “

    • save NZ 6.1

      +1 – scary stuff

    • Gabby 6.2

      It figures that they’d be Douglies.

    • ianmac 6.3

      He said he also donated to the Labour Party. No. He donated to the Roger Douglas Party.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.4

      Proof that:

      1. Trusts need to be done away with and
      2. Private political donations need to be either stopped or capped at $1000 per person per year and no legal entity (trusts, businesses, unions, etc) can donate at all.

  7. dave 7

    new zealanders using there houses as ATM machines what could possible go wrong???
    will the day reckoning arrive for the debtors???? or will houses rise for ever?????

    • Sabine 7.1

      yep, like my customer with three mortgages. 🙂 pray for nothing to happen or else shit creek raises up to the nostrils.

  8. Olwyn 8

    Listening to Hillary Clinton’s New York victory speech yesterday, I thought the game must surely be up for her kind of politics, whether she ends up as president this time around or not. All platitudes and triangulation, roared in a tone to suggest conviction – “I can imagine an America where….whaa whaa.” Then the obvious step into Bernie’s slipstream, and out again with an adjusted focus. I am sick to death of people whose primary skills are working a room and attracting donors, and can understand those who will vote for Trump if Clinton gets the Democratic nomination.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      I am sick to death of people whose primary skills are working a room and attracting donors

      And there it is.

    • save NZ 8.2

      +1 – people do not want meaningless drivel – people actually need REAL policies from politicians to get their countries out of these messes. Doing more of the same is neoliberal death to the people by politicians, paid by donations for policy to make the super rich even richer (mostly by tax avoidance and keeping wages as low as possible while making basic expenses as high as possible).

      Newsflash, if most people, i.e. poor, working and middle class are too poor to buy anything than the basics then deflation will occur!

    • esoteric pineapples 8.3

      The difference between Bernie versus Clinton, John Key and most of the other leaders of the western world is that he is innately engaging to listen to because he is speaking the truth. He’s also a very entertaining speaker.

    • swordfish 8.4

      Yep, while the potency of Sanders’ campaign has forced Hillary to shift ground to the Left (at least in rhetorical terms) – with the centre of gravity in the Democratic Party arguably shifting quite dramatically – …

      ,,, as one analyst has said: Clinton “has a thousand talking points but when the lights are turned off and all the glare of the election fades, politics-as-normal will return, the lobbyists will get to work and nothing at all will happen”.

      Platitudes, triangulation, carefully-adjusted focus, required lip-service – what Blairite political operatives like Phil Quin would eulogize as finely calibrated messaging delivered with machine gun efficiency.

      She’s quite rightly disliked and distrusted by a huge chunk of Democrats and Independents. One of the things I noticed in the detail of some of the New York State Polls (mirroring those in other States and nationwide) is that Clinton supporters hold far more favourable attitudes towards Sanders (and have far greater levels of trust in him) than Sanders supporters express towards Clinton.

      • ianmac 8.4.1

        I read yesterday that to vote in New York you had to enrol by October 2015. There would have been another 3,000,000 voters had they enrolled in time. Most of those would then have been disinterested and young. Long before the Sanders fire was lit. USA the leading light for Democracy.

        • swordfish

          Yeah. Quite apart from purged electoral rolls and what looks like some systematic voter suppression on the day … this was a closed primary for registered Democrats only. That excludes the nearly 3 million (out of 11 million) voters in New York State who are Independents (and they’re, as you’ve suggested, Ian, disproportionately younger). We know from previous primaries that both Young and Independent voters have gone overwhelmingly for The Bern (as the under-30s did once again yesterday).

          Not all 3 million NYS Independents, of course, would have been Democrat leaners … but, you know, with a gap of less than 300,000 between Hillary and Sanders …

          • alwyn

            Why should “independent” voters be entitled to get involved in choosing a Party’s representative in an election? It doesn’t make any sense to me.
            After all, although not a member of the Green Party, should I be allowed to vote for the leader of that party, which automatically puts them in Parliament of the party gets 5% of the vote?
            The logic that says that independent should have a say in a party primary process is exactly the same surely?

            • Macro

              Quite right – and with the same argument – why should Trump think just because he has the most, (but not the overall majority of delegates) he should be the Republican candidate?

              Parties should be free to choose the most suitable candidate to represent their interests in the election. The fact that each Party put beans in their ears, so as not to hear the mutterings of the population at large, is neither here nor there. Let them eat cake!

            • swordfish

              Thing is: It’s a little more fluid in the US than you’re assuming. Voters can change their affiliation whenever they want (from, say, Independent to Democrat) … but New York State’s 6 month cut-off date is by far the strictest in the Country. And it’s clear that large numbers of NYS Independents were planning to register as Democrats, vote for Sanders but were unaware of the deadline.

              Most of those states with closed primaries have cut-off dates of less than 3 months prior to the primary, some less than 1 month, a couple (Maine and Wyoming) just 2 weeks. (only 11 States have closed primaries)

              Fact is: across the US as a whole, 43% of Americans are political Independents (far exceeding registered Democrats (30%) and Republicans (26%)). They’re the crucial voters that Presidential candidates need to win – so it might just be in the Democrat Party’s interest to include them in its primaries. Problem for the Clintonesque Party Establishment, of course, is that Sanders has been winning Independents by 2 to 1 over Hillary (which is why he does appreciably better than her in one-on-one match-ups with various possible Republican nominees).

      • Olwyn 8.4.2

        I think that Blairite behaviour worked to some degree prior to 2008, when the “shareholders’ democracy” story could still hold water. After 2008, the colonisation of the have-nots by the haves quickly became too apparent for “finely calibrated messaging” to have traction. It might suit some people to have an establishment left transformed into a series of “nice jobs in public life” parties, but the left cannot do without the have-nots – they after all, are the people the Labour Party was formed to defend. And there are just not enough nice, salaried leftish professionals to make up for their loss. Moreover, when someone is, say, drowning, they are very attuned to the difference between, “I can swim and I will do my best to save you” and “I really, really feel for you.”

  9. maui 9

    Check out Episode 6 of Media take (30 mins long), it covers how we remember NZs colonial history and how we look at the New Zealand Wars (we tend to ignore it). Stars historian James Belich. Theres also an extended panel discussion further down the page.


  10. Why is there not more investigation by media into how much influence the Communist Party of China has bought within the National Party?

    Is it because the CPC also owns Labour and the NZ MSM as well?

    This story, broken by David Fisher should be making headlines.

    Why is there not a follow up.

    Is the NZ Herald too frightened to go any further?

  11. save NZ 12

    Very good article on

    Bill English wants to end your privacy

    • Kevin 12.1

      “Bill English — Finance Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and now prospective Big Brother; he wants to bring together the data held by 10 government agencies so that more can be known about Kiwis.

      The agencies include health, education, social development, justice and Inland Revenue. It will create what he calls a “data highway”.

      He’ll give government workers access to it, even on their smartphones, so they can draw information on people from multiple sources before making decisions that affect them.

      The data has already shown New Zealand’s 10,000 most vulnerable people will cost taxpayers $6.5 billion over their lifetimes.

      $6.5 Billion is not that much. About a years worth of tax avoidance in the corporate world.

  12. Puckish Rogue 13


    Good, I hope they go through with it and everyone can then make up their minds about the deal

    “I can assure the public that for us the only thing that will ‘stink to the high heavens’ will be smell of roses which blossom from the fertiliser Andrew Little likes to spread around to gain his own notoriety.”

    • save NZ 13.1

      So do I Puckish Rogue. And I’m happy to donate to the opposition parties who pursue it and take it public through the courts. I hope Winny and the Greens are in with Labour, supporting looking into this disgusting “aid” deal with a fine tooth comb!

      • Puckish Rogue 13.1.1

        I will freely admit that I’m going to enjoy Andrew Little being made to look the complete tool over this

        Of course it probably won’t come to it, Little will make some mealy-mouth half-apology and the case then won’t go ahead

  13. save NZ 14

    Another good point

    Proving their point

    Back in January, the Greens proposed the not very radical idea of a policy costings unit to provide independent information on political party promises. National immediately denounced it as costing too much (while shovelling $26 million towards John Key’s vanity flag referendum). So, the Greens sought to have the policy costed by Treasury under existing rules. You’ll never guess what happened next:

  14. I had an hour long talk with William Black yesterday while on Vinny Eastwood’s show. Over the next couple of weeks I will be writing and transcribing the in all two hour interview (Vinny talked with him for two hours) and connect it back to John Key and his banking history.

  15. Draco T Bastard 16

    I sometime wonder about the basic knowledge of journalists:

    Wellington’s trolley buses ‘saved’ by $43m deal to fit them with electric motors

    That’s the headline…

    Yes, it seems that at least one journalist, probably the editor or sub-editor, doesn’t realise that the electric buses already have electric motors in them.

    What’s happening is that the buses are having batteries added and a small charging motor. In other words, they’re becoming a type of hybrid vehicle. Would be interesting to see what sort of savings the change will make.

  16. Rodel 18

    Goodness me! Was that published in the Herald? Bye Raybon.

  17. CoroDale 19

    Well, if saturdays and sundays don’t exist anymore, then it must be beer on a thursday morning. Cheers to an old grain variety organic pilsner, actually cheaper in Germany than NZ’s beer, that might give you the craps.

    Then to contemplate environmentally wise ways to mine our resources. Or shall we stay dependent an housing based economy, oh or yet more tourism? Titanium and Thorium may be two good reasons NZ can be independent of the debt hammer. High energy, but technically possible eco-friendly, just takes long term planning, and obviously not an interest-rate-based accounting model.

    Hey, some iwi groups are actually kicking ass with goats n honey on small blocks. Can you imagine sending that to Japan organic as cheese? They would give you the worlds best solar units in return. Perfect for urban families wanting to go inde-electric with ozonation for their grow rooms. Or those air ionising units that mitigate the waves from the electro-magnetic ocean. See if those ionisers can improve the health of our politicians. Some of those back-bench MPs probably also need some Bill Hicks style “mandatory marijuana”.

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