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Open mike 21/07/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 21st, 2015 - 288 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 up to the mike …

288 comments on “Open mike 21/07/2015 ”

  1. Dan1 1

    I may have missed someone else posting this reference, but it is very powerful and moving stuff. Similar results to NZ banks and the swaps fiasco.
    I understand David Pascoe is an equine vet who writes a regular blog.


  2. Saarbo 2


    I suspect that Nationals new policy around education, specifically “Community of Schools” is National’s very cunning way of closing schools by stealth.

    Isnt going to happen in our area!

  3. mickysavage 3

    Bird call of the day on Radio New Zealand is Kereru …

    • Skinny 3.1

      Speaking of Kereru…looks like Sonny Tau now has an out. He was merely picking up and deliverying the birds for a Government Minister who has acquired a taste.

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.1.1

        Speaking of Radio New Zealand…..someone seems to have taken the edge off the morning presenters.

        Much less of the incisive, insistent interviews (with our household cheering them on) and more of a ‘wee chat’ approach. ( Although Mr. Little did get a grilling….funny that.)

        Oh dear….where will we get our news from now?

    • weka 3.2

      “Bird call of the day on Radio New Zealand is Kereru …”

      Is it making a karking kind of sound?

    • mary_a 3.3

      @ mickysavage – Yes I noticed that one too, just before the 7am news bulletin this morning. The call of the Kereru. Irony or what? Rubbing it in to NatzKEY perhaps?

      But the Dame (Turia) says it’s OK for elders to eat the bird for special occasions! OK to break one’s own cultural rules then is it Ms Turia?

  4. Morrissey 4

    An Open Letter to Britain’s Leading Violent Extremist: David Cameron
    July 20, 2015

    This open letter to the Prime Minister is published by INSURGE INTELLIGENCE, a new crowd-funded investigative journalism project.

    Dear Prime Minister David Cameron,

    It is with deep disappointment that I read excerpts of your speech provided by Downing Street to the press, purporting to set out a five-year strategy to tackle fundamentalist terrorism, which — whatever its intentions — is thoroughly misguided, and destined to plunge this country, as well as the Middle East, into further chaos and misery.

    I am writing this open letter to request you, as a matter of urgency, to abide by your obligations as a human being, a British citizen, a Member of Parliament, and as our Prime Minister: to undertake proper due-diligence in the formulation of Britain’s foreign, counter-terrorism and security policies, based on the vast array of evidence from scientific and academic studies of foreign policy, terrorism and radicalisation, rather than the influence of far-right extremist ideology, and of narrow vested interest groups keen to profit from war and fear.


    Your war, Prime Minister, is a farce.

    You, more than any other British citizen, are complicit in the rise of ISIS, and the radicalisation of a minority of Britons. You have helped create the militant groups which, you rightly acknowledge, are murdering not just Westerners, but Muslims in Iraq, Syria and beyond.

    The only people that will benefit from all this are giant defence contractors, many of which are closely connected to your party, and which hold overbearing counter-democratic influence on your foreign policy.


    • Chooky 4.1

      +100 ….good points Morrissey…the British might well ask themselves …and many have …who has driven a terrorist backlash?

      ….and is Cameron now going to take Britain into a fascist democracy shutdown? …where people can not speak out?

  5. Charles 5

    Oh no. Who was it here yesterday that said: “The worst PR advice there is, is to try to dig yourself out of a hole with your mouth.”

    Over on Phil Quin’s blog, the president of the Labour Party has sent an email reply to Quin’s resignation letter that says he’d target Singaporeans, and Germans too, if he had to. With all their digging, I think Labour just burrowed their way out the other side of the Earth – without reaching China first.

    New headlines: “Labour Would Target Germans.”

    Advice for Labour: Before you say anything else, or develop any more policy or media releases or speeches, have a read of the Human Rights Act and the Bill of Rights Act and if anything in your rhetoric can’t get through those existing legal filters/guidelines, don’t say it, don’t do it, just stop and think about it for a bit.

    • Bill 5.1

      You didn’t provide a link, but did he really say “If I had to”?!

      Cause like, it’s all ‘the Chinese’ innit?

    • weka 5.2

      I knew it! What Labour are really doing is digging a hole to the other side of the world so that the Chinese have better and more direct access! We’ve been fooled (and not for the first time).

    • Bill 5.3

      Okay. Found it. Fuck me!

      So trawling through surnames and assigning a country of origin or ethnicity to people on the basis of those names is all about (to quote the Labour Party President) “consider(ing) the potential impact of those assets and investment on New Zealand housing ownership, or, indeed, on other aspects of our economy”

      I can’t for the life of me see the connection between finger pointing and analysis, but hey.

      Oh. And there is no need to look at any other overseas investment because the other overseas investment isn’t the dominant overseas investment.

      Here’s the link for others. http://www.philquin.com/blog/2015/7/20/nigel-haworths-revealing-rebuttal

      In searching for that particular blog post, I read some others and I have to say, that in spite of Quin’s reputation of being perhaps a bit of a fuckwit on a number of issues, on this one he’s absolutely bang on the money.

      edit: I should add that if Labour were claiming they’d name trawled to get some idea of the wider picture, as in attempting to get some idea, no matter how rough, of the extent of broader overseas investment, then at a stretch…maybe. But to categorically rule out any and all other sources of overseas investment as being problematic…wow.

      • Colonial Viper 5.3.1

        And this is the same Labour Party which sold off shit loads of NZ stuff to foreign investors – Australians and Americans – or watched it happen without proposing to ban foreign ownership of our power companies, or our telecom companies.

        Rank vote gubbing hypocrisy from Labour.

        • Draco T Bastard

          It’s possible that they’ve finally learned that they’ve been wrong for the last thirty years and are now starting to look to undo the damage that they’ve done over that time.

          • Colonial Viper

            I think it more likely they are on an opportunistic vote grab.

            You don’t see them floating a ban on foreign ownership of NZ companies, do you.

            • Draco T Bastard

              I think it more likely they are on an opportunistic vote grab.

              It wasn’t.

              You don’t see them floating a ban on foreign ownership of NZ companies, do you.

              Unfortunately, no but they are talking about restrictions that can easily lead to a full ban.

          • Chooky

            +100 DTB

    • John Shears 5.4

      Just to save others getting to the actual content of Haworths letter
      here it is copied from Quins site.

      . Anyway, Nigel Haworth, the party’s president, wrote to me. This is the crux of his argument:

      To refer to Chinese purchasers in such an analysis is not racist. Given, as others have also pointed out, that China is today engaged in massive international investment, much of it strategic, and is also the home of vast, and increasingly mobile, cash assets, it is right and proper for New Zealand to consider the potential impact of those assets and investment on New Zealand housing ownership, or, indeed, on other aspects of our economy. If it were Singaporean. or German or other investment that seemed to be dominant, it would be equally proper to name its source economy (for example, much as has been done since the Second World War in relation to US investment flows).

      So Bill , NO he didn’t say “If I Had to”

  6. Racism seems to be well misunderstood.

    I give big ups to the doorman in this article who withstood abuse of a very nasty kind and still managed to retain his mana and dignity.

    It shows the male Ministry of Social Development employee saying “f***ing n*****s” and claiming the decision to deny him and his colleague entry is “racist”. In the video, Mr Tai-Rakena told a woman: “You’re not coming in here girl, you’re too intoxicated. Away you go.”


    • tinfoilhat 6.1

      +1 Marty – I saw the piece on the news, the doorman and his workmates managed to stay very calm and measured during a vile tirade of abuse.

      • McFlock 6.1.1

        the doorman and his workmates managed to stay very calm and measured during a vile tirade of abuse

        Well, one of the skills of that job is to realise that the dickheads don’t particularly mean what they say. 99% of that Swayze film Roadhouse was bullshit, but this little exchange was spot on:

        Steve: Being called a cocksucker isn’t personal?

        Dalton: No. It’s two nouns combined to elicit a prescribed response.

        I generally found it boring more than anything else. Although one funny thing is that after the initial refusal of entry they’d call me all sorts of stuff, and 30s later they were going “aww mate, do us a favour”. They almost never got it the right way around. But usually I’d just sort of tune it out (beyond listening for relevant information) and really only look for a pre-assault indicator. Which almost never happened compared to the amount of verbal thrown.

    • That’s awful stuff, marty. I certainly agree that racism isn’t well understood by some people (the last ten days have shown that all too well). The reflex reaction to call anything racist without looking at the underlying issues or context is probably a modern malaise. It’s PC gone mad etc.

      I’d also wonder if the male in the video is affected not just by alcohol, but by the sense of power and authority he gets from being a paid benefit bouncer for WINZ. When you spend your days licensed to show contempt for people, that can definitely affect your thinking after hours as well.

      • tinfoilhat 6.2.1


      • Crashcart 6.2.2

        So what you are sayig is that because you found something way more blatently racist that makes the Chinese data OK?

        I am not saying what Labour did was racist but the people it targeted seem to feel that way. Intent means a lot. However there are a lot of people who truely belive they are not racist. They just don’t understand that their actions and words paint a different picture.

        • te reo putake

          The data is OK because the data is OK. As marty’s example shows, some people think just about any situation is an opportunity to go OTT. Good point about intent, btw.

          • James

            The data was not OK. To quote Keith Ng:

            “The method is fine, the data is broken, and those problems render it unscientific and utterly useless. Not sound. Not robust. Not accurate.”

            • te reo putake

              The data was fine. It was the actual record of the sales of the largest real estate company in AK. Nothing changes that fact.

              The analysis, on the other hand …

            • lprent

              And Keith Ng is completely and utterly wrong on the data. You couldn’t get better data.

              The point was that it is the BEST data that is currently available because it is the only data that indicates where the money for residential properties is coming from. Therefore there is no better data.

              The only other statistical data around just shows that the money for the higher total values of property sales isn’t coming from banks. It could be coming from socks as far as we can currently tell.

              Keith Ng is talking crap – unless he can show a source of data that allows a similar type of analysis about money sources for purchasing residential properties.

              At the earliest that won’t apparently happen until October, which will probably be catastrophic for our economy. By the sounds of Nationals posturing any data and analysis from that will not be public.

              • Colonial Viper

                The point was that it is the BEST data that is currently available because it is the only data that indicates where the money for residential properties is coming from. Therefore there is no better data.

                How exactly does the name list identify whereabouts money is coming from – onshore or offshore? From residents or from non-residents? As far as I can see, it does no such thing.

                Keith Ng is talking crap – unless he can show a source of data that allows a similar type of analysis about money sources for purchasing residential properties.

                How on earth can you attack his critique of the name list data based on whether or not Keith can access other sets of data? How would hypothetical access to other sets of data be relevant to Keith’s critique of the name list data?

                And Keith Ng is completely and utterly wrong on the data. You couldn’t get better data.

                How can you tell if the name list data covering just 3 months is representative of the proceeding 24 or 36 months? Perhaps the snapshot over-represents activity by people with Chinese sounding names. Perhaps it under-represents activity by people with Chinese sounding names.

                • McFlock

                  How exactly does the name list identify whereabouts money is coming from – onshore or offshore? From residents or from non-residents? As far as I can see, it does no such thing.

                  Indeed it doesn’t.
                  It merely illustrates that if both the real estate data and the names-ethnicity data reflect the same domestic population, then a single subgroup of that population that is significantly less well off than the population median and is otherwise statistically unremarkable also appears to purchase houses at something like six times the rate of any other subgroup, the disparity accounting for something like a third of the real estate dataset. Even if that accounted for 100% of the market activity of that subgroup, the disparity is around threefold.

                  Given global economic conditions compared to local economic conditions, the represented disparity at the very least least strongly indicates that we should be measuring overseas property ownership to rule out whether sovereignty issues could become a problem in the moderate to near future.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    As Cullen said, this data should have been collected years ago. The name list doesn’t make a difference in that.

                    • McFlock

                      Actually, it’s the main reason msm are talking about it now, rather than hoping for the best with the nats’ ird-number plan.

                • lprent

                  The word is statistically. The whole point about statistics is that it is a branch of maths for dealing rigorously with error.

                  Keith keeps pointing to error. He knows that error in itself is damn well measurable. So far he hasn’t pointed to any error that wasn’t pointed out and dealt with in the analysis from Labour, presumably from Ron Salmond. Sure it isn’t physics, but what is these days? Physics is mostly stats now.

                  How on earth can you attack his critique of the name list data based on whether or not Keith can access other sets of data?

                  I didn’t. What I asked was where he knew of any better data. I am pretty confident that at present there isn’t anything better at elucidating or debunking the property purchase issues that Labour pointed out. If someone wants to be critical about data then they need to present something to back their criticisms.

                  The ONLY way you can be as absolutely sure of error as Keith is being is if he had a better data set. Where is it? The lack of it means that his attacks on the error in this data is in my mind (to put it mildly) complete crap.

                  Sure the data isn’t the best. It covers a mere 3 months covering 45% of the sales from the largest real estate company in Auckland. But the risks of poor data are measurable. There is no way that you can look at a sample size of 45% and think at a statistically or a business level that it is likely to have the kinds of crappy confidence levels that Keith has been trying to suggest.

                  B&T have been the largest real estate company across the whole of Auckland for my adult life. And I spent my life dealing with private industries in both local and vertical international markets.

                  Large local companies damn well don’t get to be the largest in any local market by being a specialist as Keith appears to have been suggesting they could be. It is extremely unlikely that for those 3 months Barfoot and Thompson fundamentally changed their business of the 35 years that I have been aware of them. They cover everything….

                  It it’d been Ray White or Crockers who do specialise more, then there might have been some validity in that argument. But the lower percentages of the total sales would have been more of a problem.

                  It is highly likely that the data extracted from B&T represents those 3 months of real estate sales in Auckland pretty well because it was 45% of the sales of Auckland from the realtor that is literally everywhere across our local market.

                  And I don’t know of any reason why those three months were different. I have been keeping track of Auckland real estate since 2012, including during those three months. We knew when we moved back into my apartment, that we’d want a bigger place eventually. So we keep looking to see what is there, through agents, trademe, and turning up at open homes and sites.

                  Nothing much has changed in the local market since mid 2012 where I look. The supply has gotten slightly better, prices have risen at a pretty steady 25% pa, there appear to be no signs of it changing that every moderately affordable apartment is being built for yuppie flatmates and renting out, and the number of places getting sold cheaply because of leaky home damage has been steadily diminishing. I’d be interested if anyone could point to anything that says things have changed in Auckland, because I haven’t seen anything that says it has.

                  You’d need real data rather than the frigging barrister style arguments in your comment to convince me that this data is different to the reality. I see it every third weekend. That kind of bullshit arguments is something that you use for politicians and the credulous rather than engineers.

                  On the other side, I have used these kinds of lists of names for doing canvassing. I have used them for targeting and prediction. Being a rather paranoid programmer, I analyse validity of anything that I use as a matter of course. With this kind of info, both from thousands of direct tests of data and indirectly via stats. I did so for the every set of the data, including name data for local Labour. I’d bet that some of Salmond’s name data derives from that. And being of a practical bent, I’m far less inclined to trust pure stats that Salmond is…

                  Like many other factors, names are not particularly useful for predicting individuals. You need a multiplicity of factors overlapping an individual and some history to get that to moderately high levels. But they are extremely accurate for correlations between sets in a population.

                  They are certainly good enough for doing reasonably accurate statistical estimates. Especially when you are merely looking for large differences between two population groups as Rob Salmond did. Unless people were busily deliberately lying to their realtor – (which seems quite unlikely – and indicates a different problem if it did), there is a massive difference visible between two populations.

                  Now I have no particular stake in this as I haven’t touched any canvassing systems for quite some time, and to be frank I really don’t have the damn time. But some of the complete drivel from intelligent people over the last week is just pissing me off.

                  Keith is one of those. I have read what he has written on this subject, and he hasn’t managed to convince me that he knows what he talking about here. It looks more like wishful thinking.

                  Sure I’d like to see better data. But at present and until at least October (unless the realtors release some information voluntarily) this is what we have.

                  To me it looks like Auckland and the rest of NZ has a bloody urgent economic problem, and one that I didn’t suspect was quite so severe until Labour released this (and I’d had time to think it over).

                  That is because I suspect that the overflows from the Asian markets are just the largest part of the foreign investment seeking large returns in the local property bubble. By an accident of history, it just happens to be the bit that is most easily analysed against the local population.

                  My back of the envelope calcs seem to indicate that if we do have that size of speculative bubble with so many from offshore trying not to be the last holding the hot potato, when it does crunch, there is going to be a whole lot of working cash ripped from the local economy fast as turnover plummet hard. I think that will be worse than anything I have ever seen.

                  Perhaps Keith should turn his usually excellent mind towards that issue.

              • John Shears

                Thanks Iprent for putting the record straight. Data is data is Data……..

                Opinions , now that is a different matter.

              • Keith Ng

                Pluto is made of cheese. If you think this is wrong, you are obliged to provide better data. Otherwise, “Pluto is made of cheese” is the best data available, therefore is must be true.

                Your logic is bad. Not having a substitute does not make the “next best alternative” true or meaningful.

                • Anne

                  He has a thousand qualifications. How many do you have?

                • lprent

                  But better data has long since been provided for Pluto’s surface and probable inner structures since Clyde Tombaugh located it in the 1930s. But I don’t think that even children thought it was ever made of cheese. Perhaps you are thinking about the moon?

                  This data from Barfoot and Thompson and analysed by Labour looks to me like it is statistically valid. I’ve done this particular kind of analysis before in several areas. It is likely to have a error rate of less than 10%. It is a 3 month slice of previously opaque behaviour. Sure it’d be nice to have more data to fine tune the confidence.

                  But I’ll take market hints from anything that solid when the alternative is anecdote, unsubstantiated theory or supposition.

                  What it shows is that we appear to have a self-referential property bubble in Auckland with overseas money playing ponzi games of hot potato.

                  It is probably happening far wider than what can be conservatively statistically inferred for this data. For instance, I can’t think of a reason why Europeans wouldn’t be involved via property companies. It’d suit their kind of portfolio attitudes to markets. I can’t see the US citizens getting into it too much. They have enough growing economic areas to invest in at present.

                  When someone gets burnt as the music stops, those holding from offshore will be left with the costs. But it’d likely to be relatively low risk as they just hold until they can exit without major loss. But they are just playing the odds of really low returns at low risks against high returns at higher risks. This one is for them medium risks for high returns. Property in rapidly growing cities holds value.

                  In the case of local purchasers who have to live where they work, they will probably catch the potato when local interest rates rise even a bit, or they have a employment problem, or the value of the property drops below the mortgage level. They are likely doing it with a excessive mortgage that leaves bugger all room for risk and relies on too much luck.

                  But the abrupt stop in incoming investment flows will also hit a lot further out into jobs (especially casual and part-time retail, distribution, and services) when people start pulling back on spending as they feel poorer. Expect all of those recent real estate people flooding back into the job market along with their baristas, nannies, car-groomers and the like.

                  The sooner it gets stopped or controlled (like all ponzi schemes), the less damage it causes here.

                  But try to ignore the data because of an ideological point? That simply isn’t going to happen. It is real data. It will be factored all of the way through the local market by now.

                  For instance it tells me there really isn’t any point for me to keep looking around for a larger apartment for the moment. The prices don’t reflect shortage so much as offshore speculation, so there is more than likely going to be a good bust. I already have a place. I can wait for it.

                  If you want to be a petulant child playing wave the cheese games like you have been doing for the last week – then go ahead. It really doesn’t add anything useful to dealing with the real issue of this hot potato and stopping the next one anyway….

          • Bill

            The data is okay? How many ‘Lees’ were assigned as Chinese? How many of those were deemed to be resident?

            The data collection was a bit like gathering information on random green stuff that grew out the ground and taking a punt on how much of that green stuff was grass. (Sure, they put in some parameters that filtered out trees…maybe bushes too.)

            • Lanthanide

              “How many ‘Lees’ were assigned as Chinese?”

              40% of them, according to Rob’s detailed post explaining his methodology where he acknowledged that Lee is also a very common European surname.

              “How many of those were deemed to be resident?”

              That conclusion was not drawn. The only conclusion they reached is that 9% of Auckland appear to be ethnic Chinese based on the census, and from their analysis 40% of the house buyers from a agency covering 45% of sales in a 3 month period appeared to be ethnic Chinese.

              The most likely explanation for the significant (4x) difference in the proportions is that non-resident ethnic Chinese are buying houses in Auckland.

              But that is not a conclusion, only the most likely explanation from the analysis of the available data. Other explanations are possible, and many of them will contribute to some of the discrepancy more than others (for example, maybe it was just that time of year, there are more new Chinese immigrants than other ethnicities, Chinese may prefer this real estate company over others, etc).

              Quite simple, really.

              • weka

                Would resident ethnic Chinese people buying investment properties not also be part of the picture?

                • Bill

                  What it comes down to is whether the Labour Party wanted to highlight and focus on money specifically coming from China, or whether they have a genuine concern on overseas money and were just stupidly using rough ‘Chinese related’ data to get an indication of the larger picture while unbelievably ignoring hard data that was available.

                  National doesn’t know what it’s doing on foreign buyers

                  The first is obvious dogshit for a whole host of reasons. And from the Labour Party president’s response to Quin, the latter is of no concern…


                • Lanthanide

                  Yes, it would be part of the picture, I did say “etc” in my list of examples.

                  It is perhaps the biggest one factor. But there’s not much to back up that as a theory either – why should Chinese be so much more into housing investment than other ethnicities? Rob’s data shows that they make up 5% of those on incomes over $50,000, in other words they make up a smaller share of high-income earners than their overall makeup (9%) would suggest.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Rob’s data shows that they make up 5% of those on incomes over $50,000,

                    What about those over $200,000 pa. Those are the people able to buy Auckland investment properties. Not the saps on between $50K and $100K pa.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      So, the straw that you’re grasping for is that ~1% of the resident Chinese descended population are buying 400 times more housing than others?

                    • weka

                      Doesn’t have to be descendents. Could be recent immigrants with overseas money.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      So, the straw that you’re grasping for is that ~1% of the resident Chinese descended population are buying 400 times more housing than others?

                      The 1% has a pretty good shot at owning more wealth than the bottom 90%

                    • Nessalt

                      the saps between 50 – 100k? labours target vote market being denigrated for not earning enough to be truly loathed but earning to much to be considered “true” working class. arsehole

                • Draco T Bastard

                  That was accounted for.

              • You_Fool

                Rob also did more analysis to arrive at the hypothesis that foreign chinese buyers accounted for the difference in apparent buyers and apparent residents. He did also look at ethnic Indian last names and noted that there was only a 3% (ish) difference in apparent purchase and apparent resident proportions (9% oh buyers vs 6% of population.) Rob Salmond’s analysis was better than the one put forward by Labour and he made the point better that there was no real data and so surnames were the only proxy they had to actual data.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Rob Salmond’s analysis was better than the one put forward by Labour


                  Rob Salmond’s analysis was the one put forward by Labour.

                  • Lanthanide

                    I initially read it the way you did, but what I think You Fool means is that Rob actually had a comprehensive analysis, and Labour didn’t publish the whole thing, and chose instead to focus on aspects of it.

                    For example, on The Nation, Twyford never mentioned the comparative Indian name analysis that Rob did.

                    • Anne

                      Trying to keep it simple I imagine. We’re always complaining Labour make policies/issues too complicated for the average voter. And that includes some media reporters like the (knee) jerk, Patrick Gower.

                    • lprent

                      One of the things that you find out when you are around a film maker, obvious in retrospect, is that the story line for an onscreen feature length film should be about the length of a short short story if it has a lot of dialogue in it.

                      It’d have to be shortened of course because otherwise it will look like characters are gibbering idiots.

                      The amount of information you can push across in film is far greater than you can write in words. But less than most novelists has in a single chapter.

                      Same problem with something like The Nation. You read a transcript and they are shorter than some of my posts 🙂 And someone being interviewed gets something like a tenth of that if they are extremely lucky.

                      I got a lot less interested in TV news / current affairs once I realised that. Sure I can read body language. But it involves spending a lot of time waiting for it. Or I can read what people write.

                      Getting Twyford to explain the other tests that would have been done on the data would have meant that he wasn’t able to explain what they found that was so interesting 😈

              • McFlock

                I suspect that it wasn’t even so much as 40% of individuals being “labelled”, more as ethnicities being given a final score based on weightings of the names, i.e. an index like CPI rather than an outright count. And then the indices were scaled to cumulatively add up to 100, and there’s your “percentage”.

                That’s how I’d consider doing it at first blush, anyway.

              • John Shears

                Thanks L , simple for you, but not for some of the others that are commenting in the MSM & here on TS sadly, or are they just trying to keep the muddy waters stirred?

            • lprent

              How many ‘Lees’ were assigned as Chinese? How many of those were deemed to be resident?

              Oh FFS. Maybe some revision on basic statistics is required.

              None of them were “assigned” as individual people or a family. That appears to be your fundamental misunderstanding, deliberate or otherwise.

              As a group with the family name “Lee” each data record would given a probability of being Chinese, a probability of being Korean, a probability of being European, and probably probabilities for several other categories as well – including something like “we have no idea”. So was every other unique family name.

              There is a relatively constrained set of family names used in any country including NZ by cultural group, and the data is “conservative” as the name generally travels through many generations. This kind of data is usually tested by getting people from each culture picking out the more common names in their culture and then tested by getting people to self-identify to get the probabilities.

              As an analytical technique it is pretty accurate. >90% and usually >95% for many cultural groups even in a society that mixes as much as ours does over a century.

              Sure there is inaccuracy in it.

              However it doesn’t apply tags to individuals in the way that you seem to think it does. What this kind of analysis looking for is statistical groups rather than trying to pick out individuals. It is exactly the same kind of analysis what the stats department does with the 5 year censuses and the monthly or quarterly data that goes out across the country. They break it down into statistical groups all over the place,.

              That was applied to the set of data of property sales to get a set of probabilities for possible correlations for the whole data set.

              To one degree or another, that is how statistics, all parts of physical sciences, and most parts of the social sciences operate where there are big enough data sets. They don’t concern themselves with individual bits of data. They concern themselves with probabilities and correlations.

              The whole point about statistics is that you don’t have to sample whole populations to get accurate results. You can sample smaller samples to get close to the results of the fully accurate whole population. Samples can be quite small compared to large populations. That is the basis of most polling, which is usually accurate within a few percent of the population result (of course these days a few percent either way in an election is usually the difference – but that is because parties balance around that point).

              That is all straight forward and the analysis of the correlations is rigorous enough in the absence of any better data and the difference in size between the correlations.

              The next stage is to look for causation for high probability correlations.

              Labour have pointed out the obvious causation for the huge difference between the percentages of family name segments of the population as a whole and those buying houses during this period. That is what you an many others appear to be having an issue with.

              So far I haven’t seen any alternate explanations that make any sense apart from imported overseas investment money. The money isn’t getting borrowed from local banks. It appears to be large enough to drive the kinds of crazy 25+% per annum house price increases that we have seen since 2011.

              What it seems to identify compared to previous economic research as recent as 2013 is that we are rapidly hitting the point where Auckland house prices are largely caused by overseas investment money buying property from other overseas investors.

              At about 40% it is freaking high, but even worse is that it appears to be rising rapidly. That it has nothing to do with the real economic value of the land or properties themselves to our economy. That means that it will therefore almost certainly cause a nasty economic crash that will reverberate throughout the rest of NZ. Bearing in mind our current fragile economic state, that is something worth actually worrying about, and one that bears considerable real-world consequences.

              You notice that what Labour actually asked for was to get some immediate data collection and analysis going on in the area of foreign investment in property? Seems rather mild compared to what I think is actually needed.

              Probably because we have people worrying about how statistics data is collected and analysed for reasons that seem to owe more to the thoughts of Lysenko than anything vaguely rational.

              Just looks like a whole pile of avoidance behaviour to me. Probably with the kinds of downstream consequences of that exercise of group thinking.

              • Bill

                Labour have pointed out the obvious causation for the huge difference between the percentages of family name segments of the population as a whole and those buying houses during this period. That is what you an many others appear to be having an issue with.

                No Lynn. That’s not what I have a problem with. They could have harvested data and tried to draw inferences from it. No problem. But to then stand up and point to a single ethnic group as being responsible for people being unable to buy houses, yeah…that’s where the problem comes up.

                They could have done their wee exercise with ‘Chinese sounding’ surnames – flawed or unflawed as it may be – and announced that there was a foundation to assume that overseas money was causing problems. But they didn’t. They dog-whistled on an easily (mis) identifiable ethnic minority.

                For Christ’s sake look at the history for Chinese living in NZ! It ain’t flash. And acknowledge that Asians ain’t high on the list of people that Pakeha feel well disposed towards. Throw in a major political party giving people reason to further resent an already fairly maligned part of NZ society and reflect to yourself on how good an idea that might be.

                They could have made some general statement about overseas money and subsequently broken it down and pointed to the preponderance of money seemingly coming in from China. But they didn’t.

                And to cap it all, we’re now hearing that Labour don’t actually give a toss about overseas money, but just that overseas money that’s originating in China. It’s fucked.

                edit – you do not ever dress up an economic problem in ethnic garb – never.

                • lprent

                  I agree that there may have been better ways of handling it. Damned if I think what they would have been…

                  Imagine that they did it exactly how you suggest…

                  …and announced that there was a foundation to assume that overseas money was causing problems.

                  And then I’d imagine that Keith Ng and I would have been on exactly the same side of this debate – asking what in the hell the basis of that foundation because they hadn’t published any details. An analysis without any clear and transparent basis is just idiotic propaganda. Something that only fools would believe.

                  At best we’d have ignored it. At worst, I and most of the online commentators would have been tearing (metaphorically) a Labour spokesperson’s head off for extreme stupidity and getting between the left and an election victory.

                  They could have made some general statement about overseas money and subsequently broken it down and pointed to the preponderance of money seemingly coming in from China.

                  Staging it would have had exactly the same result as now. For the reason outlined above, the pressure to say why would have appalling. After the reason forced out of Labour, I’d have been tearing….. For that matter so would have you for a variety of reasons.

                  For Christ’s sake look at the history for Chinese living in NZ! It ain’t flash….

                  I agree with all of that. But they’d get hit just as hard as anyone else with the consequences of a bursting real estate bubble of the size of what appears to be inflating.

                  The *only* choices that I can see for Labour would have been to not publish at all. In which case I’d ask what bloody use are they as an opposition to this pack of economic fuckwits in government, or to publish explaining what they’d found.

                  They took the responsible latter course. Because we damn well need to know about this issue. I had no idea that we were getting into the investor tail-biting stage this damn far in Auckland. It *could* be a blip. But that seems damn unlikely.

                  And to cap it all, we’re now hearing that Labour don’t actually give a toss about overseas money, but just that overseas money that’s originating in China.

                  Where is that? Haven’t seen anything about it yet.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    An analysis without any clear and transparent basis is just idiotic propaganda. Something that only fools would believe.


                    It’s what I’ve been thinking since the get go. Labour had to publish the results else anything that they said on the matter would have been written off as BS.

                    Unfortunately, the people who’ve been indoctrinated into Identity Politics immediately jumped on it as racist and won’t let that go no matter how much you show that it had nothing to do with racism. It was, and is, merely data and an analysis of that data showing trends that we need to do something about.

                    • adam

                      “the people who’ve been indoctrinated into Identity Politics ”

                      God your an idiot – spelling mistake aside.

                      When have any of us said the data was racist? It was and will always be the fubar presentation which was, and is the problem.

                    • Bill

                      I called her bitch. She said I was being misogynistic. I pointed out to her that what I said had nothing to do with misogyny but she, daft bint, wouldn’t let it go.

                  • Bill

                    Correspondence from NZ Labour Party president to Phil Quin.

                    If it were Singaporean. or German or other investment that seemed to be dominant, it would be equally proper to name its source economy.


                    The whole thing should be read.

                    On the rest of it, as I linked to last night and again this morning, (again in this comment) David Hood had already done work that would appear to show a flood of foreign money coming in. Labour could have used that and other available data.

                    National doesn’t know what it’s doing on foreign buyers

                    As for what they (Labour) did do and their framing, there’s a fuck of a difference between saying “There’s foreign money skewing the market…and by the way,as expected given the current configuration of global capital, a lot of it appears to be coming in from China.” and “There’s a lot of Chinese money skewing the market.”

                    The former makes a statement and, handled appropriately, would only offer somewhat neutral, further detail. The latter is a dog-whistle in that it encourages peoples’ already existing prejudices.

                    Note: the italics is a late edit. Point is, the ethnic angle could have been neutralised instead of being played on.

                    • lprent

                      On the rest of it, as I linked to last night and again this morning, (again in this comment) David Hood had already done work that would appear to show a flood of foreign money coming in. Labour could have used that and other available data.

                      And it was what I referred to. They did point out exactly those same facts over and over and over again. Macro-economic data is pretty useless at pinpointing where money is coming from.

                      It is an money based economic analysis that showed relatively small amounts that are indistinguishable from people actually owning their own properties, shifting money from other investments, or pulling it out of socks in NZ.

                      It is an economic analysis. About half of the measures I have ever looked at over time for those have flaws of data collection and rarely survive for more than 15 years without and abrupt judder in what data is collected.

                      Quite simply moneys biggest asset is that it is portable. It moves between investments. It does it without a lot of trace.

                      Besides, have you actually read what David Hood actually said. He has the effect of that type of information nailed.


                      Then they go “yes, it is a mystery”, or rather most of the time “I don’t understand”. At which point you can’t actually say much more as there is no positive evidence of where the mystery money is coming from*, only negative evidence from inside NZ for where it isn’t. And the conversation dies as too abstract.

                      Indeed… I can testify to that.

                      Then people say “yes, but Ireland was different” so you get the figures for the United States as well, and find that U.S. debt again increased with house prices as local people were buying the houses.

                      Just read the mind-bending contortions of that numerical apologist David Farrar over many years and go Indeed….

                      At which point those few people still with you go “It is strange isn’t it, huh” at which point, because it is clear that the argument is way to technical to get any traction and you have satisfied your own curiosity about the matter, you get on with your own life.

                      Or in the case of a blog like this, you stop writing about topics that have ever diminishing numbers of people reading and commenting on because they clearly have (like me) gotten tired of pointing out the obvious. Which is why David Hood’s last graph ends at Q2 2013, and I haven’t written posts explaining basics of climate change in years.

                      Which is what those types of calculations go on all of the time, but really only cross the minds of a few people playing with lots of money.

                      However if you can pretty conclusively say that for 3 months that 3 out of 10 houses brought in Auckland were sold to foreign owners, you will get wide attention. It will mostly be of the type that says “how do you know”. And you have to explain because otherwise it will change to “lying politicians”. And then… Well

                      Ok I have already explained that. Quite simply you cannot treat people as being daft living polps who will accept what a politician says. We are way too well-educated to believe them. You have to explain EXACTLY how you analysed it.

                      Which is what David Hood is pointing out. If the path between what people observe themselves and where the data is collected, then it has an impact. If you have to give them a university education in economics then it is not.

                      Should be pretty obvious. And this is something that authors on this site has been pointing out since 2007 in the tail of the last rises, and at the start of this one on 2010 and since.

                  • weka

                    Why not make the story about overseas ownership of land in general throughout NZ, then they could have talked about multiple nationalities? Part 2, highlight the areas needing urgent action (eg Auckland).

                    My take is that Labour don’t see overseas ownership as a problem until it becomes an economic one. It doesn’t matter if NZers can’t afford houses, until there is a housing crisis. I’m not being stupid there. If overseas money was providing enough rental properties in Auckland so that everyone had somewhere affordable to live, would Labour care about who owns what?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Why not make the story about overseas ownership of land in general throughout NZ, then they could have talked about multiple nationalities?

                      Did you actually read what Lynn(sp?) said? Specifically:

                      And then I’d imagine that Keith Ng and I would have been on exactly the same side of this debate – asking what in the hell the basis of that foundation because they hadn’t published any details. An analysis without any clear and transparent basis is just idiotic propaganda. Something that only fools would believe.

                    • weka

                      I’m not suggesting that Labour do that though.

                    • Bill

                      In answer to your first para, I’m pretty well convinced by now that they didn’t do that because some really fucking turned on types reckoned they had a bit of a draw card on the voting front with the ethnic angle.

                      Thankfully, it seems to have fallen flat. And now Labour get to reap the fruits of this shit they’ve sown. I suspect that the Greens going up by 3% is only a beginning. Labour’s going to bleed in all directions over the medium to long term.

                      And still they dig…

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I’m not suggesting that Labour do that though.

                      That’s exactly what you’re demanding that they do.

                    • weka

                      “That’s exactly what you’re demanding that they do.”

                      Fuck off Draco. I think I have a damn sight better idea of what I mean than you do.

                    • lprent

                      weka: I couldn’t even estimate to the nearest hundred how many posts we have done on the subject of the risks of overseas ownership and investment over the years. The majority were probably triggered from something that Labour raised, some from the greens, and some from NZF.

                      You have to remember that generally I agree with overseas investment in NZ. Just as I do with having immigration or trade agreements. I usually disagree with the posts (except on the FTTA – I don’t like restraint of trade or that level of secrecy).

                      But too much of anything is an issue. Too much immigration in a hit (like too little) causes all kinds of problems. I always remember helping out with some of the code for estimating school classroom needs in the next decade and seeing what the immigration demographic changes did to the models.

                      It is the volume of foreign investment that is an issue.
                      The economy gets “used” to it. But that kind of money literally has the whole world to move to. The problem will happen when its flow just stops one day.

                      Think of it as a large supply of free icecream that we didn’t know about (we thought they were just getting the odd sweets) and the Auckland local market as a kid ecstatically living off it. Then one day it just stops. The pain is going to be huge here because it will take it quite some time to live on carrots again.

                      For Auckland and the rest of NZ, it is likely to be worse than the effects on us of the GFC.

                  • Bill

                    Coming back at this just so I am sure I’m getting you right. Labour were responsible in doing what they have done, in spite of all the associated negatives? Ends justify the means then? I can’t agree with that approach, but hey.

                    All ethnicities are going to be hit by a housing bubble bursting, so singling out Chinese in the meantime is okay – collateral damage?

                    Well, I’ll be riveted to Labour’s proposals for average to low earners and renters. See, none of those people (Chinese Kiwi or otherwise) will be hit negatively by a bursting bubble. And for those richer types who will have to view their house (or one of their houses) as a home, well…

                    • Bill

                      There were around 4000 sales on the list, yes? Now, I know this would require a bit of time and effort, but over a few weeks couldn’t those 4000 names could have checked off against the electoral roll?

                      Then Labour could have said that, allowing for non-enrollment percentages, x% of sales in Auckland over the period were seemingly not purchases by NZ residents or citizens.

                      No singling out of any ethnicity. No dog-whistle. A clear demarcation set between domestic and foreign buyers.


                    • Lanthanide

                      Checking against the electoral roll wouldn’t really be worth the effort.

                      Too many false negatives, from people who are residents but simply aren’t on the roll (because not everyone is).

                      Too many false positives, from people who aren’t residents but have the same name as someone who is a resident.

                      It doesn’t add any *real* strength to the existing argument that they already laid out.

                    • lprent

                      It is a major issue for our economy, and in particular for people on low incomes because the first thing that happens when a property bubble stops is that the retail jobs in shops, distribution and manufacturing disappear like smoke. When people feel like they are poorer, they stop spending immediately.

                      The bigger the bubble gets before it gets pricked, the harder the over-reaction in the subsequent recession is. Think 1987 crash for instance. The cranes went down around Auckland a hell of a lot slower than the jobs and the economy collapsed countrywide.

                      Do you think those people who are quite economically sensitive are collateral damage for your views on peoples sensitivities about race?

                      You have to look at both cost sides of any issue.

                      BTW: I am pretty sure that is the way that the Labour strategists thought. It is how I would have thought about it. It is a pretty basic inside Labour that they do think that way. Sudden economic shocks are the absolute nightmare in terms of injuring people.

                    • adam

                      Don’t you think Lprent, that this bubble should have pricked some time ago?

                      I’ve been saying the main reason national are doing nothing about it – as they have no plan – and really have no idea what to do if the bubble burst and the jobs go.

                      Auckland can’t afford 100,000 people unemployed, and I think that is a conservative figure. I agree with you, It’s the spill to the down the industries who will fall quickly this time round – as to many are operating in “just in time” business model. Which does not absorb crashes well.

                      Same in Australia, they looking at 1,000,000 jobs shed when the bubble bursts.

                      This is real nightmare stuff from the Tories, they are clueless. Look at Joyce, he’s floundering – they dare not put Nick Smith in front of a camera. Key looks out of touch, and weak on this issue. His nice bloke image, is making him look like a right blonker.

                      I think the Tories are staining their collective underwear over this issue. The market has failed and if the do anything – they have to admit the whole free market approach is flawed.

                      My guess, they will stick with ideology, and let Auckland burn.

              • John Shears

                Thanks Iprent well and clearly explained.

      • weka 6.2.3

        “The reflex reaction to call anything racist without looking at the underlying issues or context is probably a modern malaise.”

        What I saw was too many people on the standard telling people who have direct experience of racism their whole lives and a political awareness and analysis of that racism, that they didn’t know what racism is. It reminds me of the rape culture conversations where feminists are told they don’t know what rape culture is. A real eye opener, because I thought we were better than this here on racism.

        • te reo putake

          Exactly! The lazy throwing around of the term kinda diminishes the recognition of actual racism.

          • weka

            please name these lazy people, because I don’t know what you are talking about.

            • Bill

              There is an old proverb that runs – when a cock stands atop the vane flapping its wings the wind knows not in which direction it blows. 😉

        • Bill

          Sadly, I agree. Except that rather than feeling somehow let down by what has been on display vis a vis the denial and defense of racism by self appointed leftists, it only served to reaffirm my view, built from many conversations and observations, that the political left in NZ is riddled through with racist nonsense.

          I wonder how much is due to people squealing to themselves “But I’m of the left therefor I can’t be racist!”? 🙄

          • The lost sheep

            I wonder how much is due to people squealing to themselves “But I’m of the left therefor I can’t be racist!”?

            How about,
            ‘I’m a Leftie who love’s and respect’s all people.
            That’s why I hate Right Winger’s or anyone else who disagrees with my political beliefs.’

        • Draco T Bastard

          What I saw was too many people on the standard telling people who have direct experience of racism their whole lives and a political awareness and analysis of that racism, that they didn’t know what racism is.

          Nope. We told you that you that data and its analysis isn’t racist. You refused to believe us because of your irrational knee-jerk reaction.

          • weka

            That doesn’t have anything to do with what I just said, except to confirm it.

            I’m not interested in sloganeering that tells politicised people who experience racism that they don’t know what racism is.

          • Bill

            Draco. The sales list was just a sales list. Even the analysis was just analysis – wonky or otherwise. The presentation by Labour of what it extrapolated from that list was nothing but a ‘racist’ (xenophobic) dog-whistle though.

            • Draco T Bastard

              The sales list was just a sales list.

              Otherwise known as data, yes.

              Even the analysis was just analysis

              The analysis turned the data into information that answered questions.

              The presentation by Labour of what it extrapolated from that list was nothing but a ‘racist’ (xenophobic) dog-whistle though.

              And that’s a load of BS. The presentation simply provided the information to the public at large.

              Some ignorant people are calling that information racist because of their ignorance.

          • Chooky

            +100 DTB

    • Charles 6.3

      While what was said was wrong, the MSD workers have raised an important point: There are too many unseen Maori bouncers stopping white people from getting shit-wrecked in bars. It’s like they want to push white drunks out onto the street. I’ve seen them, ghost-Maoris, drinking kegs in garages like they own the whole brewery. Just inspect the data! It’s obvious. That white guy had a Maori-sounding wahine with him, so that proves how far they’ll go. Just the other day some guy said kia ora to me in the street – like he didn’t know how to say hello! Jesus. They must be stopped so that the next generation of white drunks can own bars. I bet they’d even stop Samoans drinking in Taupo, too, if they had to.

    • maui 6.4

      If every bar in the country had video cameras on their bouncers on a friday/saturday night and people were made accountable for their actions via the media, I predict thousands of people would be fired from their jobs each and every week. I can’t defend what they said, but singling out people through the media seems like gutter journalism too.

      • weka 6.4.1

        So how do they know that they were WINZ workers? And why were WINZ workers pissed on the street?

        • maui

          I dunno, maybe they’re regulars there. Are WINZ workers not allowed to be chronic binge drinkers like half of NZ seems to be.

          • weka

            lolz, no, they can do that in their own time. It seems odd to be describing those people by their employment unless they were there on work time.

        • AsleepWhileWalking

          Unless it was a work function, I don’t see why it is important they work for Work and Income. High stressed employee gets drunk and disorderly, apparently I am alone in thinking they are being unfairly vilified.

          • weka

            Unless they were on work time I agree, the whole WINZ stuff is irrelevant. Weird that the article doesn’t cover that.

          • crashcart

            I don’t know if the people are being unfairly vilafied or if WINZ is. The statements that guy made were racist and offensive no matter who he worked with. If the headlines had been “Bouncer racially abused by drunk patrons” it would have been pretty much all the required info. WINZ could then decide internally if those attitudes alighn with their culture.

            However it seems to be an attempt to paint WINZ staff with a broad brush based on one racist moron. Allthough staff did say that those comments were the only ones caught on tape and that more members of the group had been using racial slurs earlier which is what made the bouncer start recording what they were saying. Once the phone came out most of the group realised what they were saying should not be recorded and stopped.

            • weka

              I definitely think that WINZ need to take a hard look at those staff and how their attitudes and behaviour might be impacting on their work. But I don’t think that should be done in public unless there is a good reason.

              • DoublePlusGood

                Or how their work impacts on their attitude and behaviour, given how staff at WINZ are directed to treat the public.

                • James

                  Perhaps we could use other identifiers as opposed to just their place of employment – which are just as relevant.

                  What if they were two labour (or national voters), or 2 gay gentlemen, or 2 left handed people.

                  Thats just making headlines. They were rude, racist idiots and they should be held to account as people, not anything else.

            • maui

              The media involvement acts as big wrecking ball through this incident. The media used their occupation because it made the story, if their occupation wasn’t mentioned in the story someone would have recognised them in the video and that information would likely have filtered through to WINZ managers to deal with the issue as they saw fit. Now with it all blown up in the media and a huge spotlight on them if they don’t take serious action they’ll be seen as weak.

        • AsleepWhileWalking

          Name tag not removed?

      • Bill 6.4.2

        Headlining that they were MSD employees is utter bullshit. Could they now be fired for bringing their employer into disrepute? Possibly. Is that fair? Not in my mind. When you have a job, you get ‘you’ back at 5:30 or whenever. What you do in your own time is, or should be, absolutely none of your employer’s business.

        Can we expect some drunk and obnoxious kid who some people might recognise from a McDs to get fired or otherwise sanctioned for mumbling some drunken racist shit at a bouncer on a Saturday night now?

        edit: Maybe the WINZ angle came up simply due to the bouncer recognising them as WINZ staff? Always the possibility there was a bit of pay-back involved. Who knows.

      • Nessalt 6.4.3

        really? it seems to me that it’s getting better. not nearly as many wrecked people out in the cities getting turned away as there was ten years ago. drinking has settled down into something that’s only done with food and for social reasons, not a means to an end in itself. I bet those winz workers were on a “corporate retreat” seeing as it’s taupo. bigging it up on the taxpayers dime to find new ways to screw the poor

  7. The search for extraterrestrial life received a major boost Tuesday with the launch of an ambitious $100 million (NZ$152 million) programme, backed by famed physicist Stephen Hawking and tech billionaire Yuri Milner.


    I believe in humans getting out and into space but on this one I think the money could be better spent.

    Organisers say the “Breakthrough Initiatives” project, also endorsed by other prominent British scientists, is the biggest ever scientific search for alien life. It includes a “listening” program ” the effort to analyse vast amounts of radio signals in search of signs of life ” and a “messaging” programme that will include $1 million (NZ$1.5 million) in prizes for digital messages that best represent the planet Earth.

    The messages will not be sent, however, in part because some scientists ” including Hawking ” fear messages sent into space could possibly spur aggressive actions by alien races.

    Yep a messaging program with messages that will not be sent. This is why I think this project is a distraction from the real and immediate issues and problems we face living on this planet.

  8. Skinny 8

    The smart Greens promote woman in purse strings role. Bumbling Bill English can expect plenty of supplementary questions from the very determined Julie Ann Genter. All that cycling around the place will hold Genter in good stead for being fast out of the saddle and going at Bill’s jugular vein.

    Well done Greens for walking the talk on gender equality.


    • Puckish Rogue 8.1

      Yes I’m sure Bill English is shaking in his boots

    • BM 8.2

      Just had a look at Julie Genter wiki page

      BA in philosophy
      Post-graduate certificate in International Political Studies
      Masters of Planning Practice
      Don’t see any thing finance related?.

      Why is she doing finance , she has no skills in this area.

      • Skinny 8.2.1

        Actually Blind Man while you think you see all, others could arguably say Genter would do a much better job than slugger Bill is doing. Considering how much debt We are in, it wouldn’t be at all hard.

        • BM

          I’m not knocking Genter, she’s obviously very educated, just makes no sense to put people in roles that they have no skills in.

          Or is this new role only about TV time and getting her face in the media?

      • lprent 8.2.2

        Have you ever looked at Bill English’s bio or Michael Cullen’s bio or virtually any of the other finance ministers we have ever had?

        Could it be you just have an XX crush?

        • BM

          Had a look at Bill English’s page.
          He does have a degree in commerce.

          I know Cullen didn’t have a great deal of financial education, lucky for us when Cullen had his turn everything was booming, we could have substituted Cullen for Bubbles the chimp and Bubbles would have still made a surplus.

          Call me crazy but I would prefer Ministers to actually have skills in their particular portfolios, this goes for all political parties.

          You wouldn’t play a halfback as a lock, would you.

          • Clean_power

            Similar to playing a hooker as fullback.

          • adam

            BM is a technocrat – who would of funked it.

            A heads up, commerce degrees are a dime a dozen, and quite frankly a very expensive piece of paper to say you can rote learn. Does explain a lot about bill english, and his lack of imagination via the ongoing economic malaise – which has kept on, rolling on.

            • maui

              Ask most 18 year olds that are going off to uni, you’ll find truckloads that are going to Dunedin to get away from home, party and do the stock standard BCom because that’s what you do when you haven’t decided on a career.

              • Colonial Viper

                Now that the economy is starting to bite a lot of kids are having to go to uni in their home city as it costs far more $$$ to live away from home.

          • McFlock

            The commerce courses at otago changed a few years ago to require first-year (i.e. fuckall) skimming of all disciplines within the division. Before that, he might have gone through just looking at marketing with never a look at finance. What was blinglish’s major?

            Besides, with debt at $100bil, maybe if he’d looked at some planning papers we’d have avoided this mess…

            • alwyn

              “The commerce courses at otago changed a few years ago to ”

              Out of curiosity what is a few years? Bill English would have been there about 35 years ago, after all (He was born in 1961).

              He also has a BA(Hons) in English Literature from VUW. He got a 1st I believe. Even Bob Jones would approve of that.
              Either of Bill’s degrees would seem to be more useful than the vast collection of “political science” qualifications in the New Zealand Labour Party.

              • McFlock

                this side of the millenium, possibly this decade.

                I suspect many of his discretionary points available under the schedule in the mid-eighties would have gone on the lit rather than planning, finance, or similar.

                I suppose the english lit helps him make shit up in the budget speech. As for who’s more useful than whom, Cullen’s qualifications were in history, and he managed to pay down government dept rather than inflate it. I guess the bcom was a handicap for blinglish.

              • mac1

                I’ll have to call you on the ‘vast collection of “political science” qualifications in the New Zealand Labour Party’ there, alwyn. Got the data for that?

                It used to be that the Labour Party was accused of being full of teachers, of which I was one, as if that was some sort of bad thing. So I did the research, and there were more teachers within the National caucus than Labour’s.

                • alwyn

                  A quick glance at the background of the better known current MPs comes up with Robertson, Goff, Shearer, Hipkins, Twyford, Cunliffe and Lees–Galloway. It is also amazing how many came up through University Student Unions.
                  I don’t know how many others there might be among the unknowns.
                  What I find rather funny is that the Labour Party had three leaders in a row who could themselves down as “failed Political Science PhD, University of Auckland”.
                  Clark, Goff and Shearer all started but failed to finish the course.

                  • mac1

                    Amongst the ‘unknowns’ only Cosgrove has politics in his degrees according to Wikipedia. He has a triple degree in Political Studies, American Studies and History.

                    So, eight out of 32 or thereabouts. A quarter. Not a ‘vast collection’ though I’d expect a bias that way for a group of left wing politicians to have studied politics at Uni. There are also theology, law and commerce degrees, education degrees, historians, people with health quals, anthropologists etc.

                    I’d expect also that more than average numbers would have been involved in university student politics. Politicians tend to be interested in politics wherever they are.

                    • McFlock

                      To be fair, eight is close to the largest number a tory is capable of counting to without taking off they socks, so it probably counts as a “vast collection” to them.

                    • mac1

                      So, via Wikipedia I took a look at 15 National MPs chosen at random. 3 had been in student politics, (another one stood for local Council as a school boy) and two had political science in their degrees. Lawyers, scientists, one engineer, commerce types and arts degrees generally.
                      One quarter of the National intake. Someone else can scan the rest!

                    • alwyn

                      I’ll take your word for the backgrounds of the unknowns. I only looked at the top 6 in the pecking order, plus the previous leaders and, because I happened to have met him recently, Lees-Galloway.
                      Of these 10 people, who I regarded as the senior ones, only Little, King and Mahuta didn’t seem to have a Pol Sci background as a University discipline.

          • whateva next?

            Whatever their academic qualifications, main difference between Right and Left MP’s is their basic agenda which is: Fair to all (L) v self serving (R)

          • Macro

            Yes Double Dipton has a degree in Commerce – even worked in Treasury (and we know how grounded in reality that lot are) . He wouldn’t know what an economy is, if he fell over it. The most useless twit to warm the Finance bench this country has ever had to suffer. What has he actually done in the 6 years he has twiddled his thumbs apart from repeat the same nonsense year after year as he “presents” his “budget”, and cut vital services that we as NZers have paid for?
            Tell us Blind Man – what is an economy for anyway?

      • mac1 8.2.3

        A little googling found that philosophy degrees include topics which would benefit any politician including social justice, critical thinking, ethics, logic, truth and political philosophy.

        Skills acquired from a study of philosophy include critical thinking, clear argument, discerning validity and importance, dealing with multiple viewpoints and ideas, deep thinking and concentration.

        Philosphy at undergraduate level is often taken with economics and politics, this being a famous combination.

        Ms Genter may have other courses in her degree which are finance related. Cullen studied economic history for example. I have a friend who studied economics and political science both to stage three level. Who decides whether he is an economist or a political scientist?

        Bob Jones used arts graduates in his employment, he once wrote, because they have learnt to think, and could be trained in the specifics of his business.

      • Dialey 8.2.4

        Having a degree in Philosophy means she has the ability to see big pictures, not just narrow focus, she also has the ability to question and test the logic of specious arguments. The less we have of economists and accountants making decisions about the good of the country and the more we have people with a broad based thinking, analytical and logical mindset, with a view of culture and history, the better.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.2.5

        It’s possible that, as part of her studies, she did economics 101 which means that she would have more knowledge of finance than our PM. That’s the thing about BAs – you never really know which courses were included in the study.

        And then there’s the fact that people don’t go to school and then stay exactly the same – they continue learning.

      • vaughan little 8.2.6

        skill is what you get after university. or at polytech.

      • infused 8.2.7

        This is what equality gets you instead of best person for the job.

    • ianmac 8.3

      Genter, “Her financial hero is American Herman Daly, who was one of the first economists to talk about the incompatibility of infinite economic growth in a finite world.”
      Makes you wonder where we are heading. Constant need to increase population and grow the economy might be a disaster in the long run.

      • Gosman 8.3.1

        There is no need to constantly increase the population to grow the economy. Places like Germany have static or falling populations and still manage to grow their economy.

        • Molly

          Baby steps Gosman. You’re getting there…

          Next you’ll be saying that there is no need to grow the economy at all…

          This is what happens when you spend so much time hanging out with those that can walk and talk at the same time.

        • Colonial Viper

          Germany has compensated for their declining population by become a massive surplus trade nation.

          Few nations are able to do that, and certainly most nations will not be able to.

    • maui 8.4

      It looks like Russel Norman is really taking a back seat too, he’s basically only got Trade and Spying portfolios now. And helping out James Shaw in leadership.

      • Skinny 8.4.1

        Yeah it’s a pity our old cobbah Rusty couldn’t quite infuse Winnie to bridge the divide. Should have a far better chance with James Shaw. Might try getting them together for a charity I’ve raised over $200 K for. Shouldn’t be hard getting them to attend a gig, a common charity maybe just the ice breaker needed.

  9. Adrian 10

    Two weeks ago I overheard a cow cocky say they had been told to expect a price “in the 3s “. I’m pretty sure he’s a Fonterra supplier.
    Now Open Country has confirmed it, obviously the big companies know a lot more about future price trends than they are letting on.
    Yet English keeps saying ” nothing to see here “.
    A milkfat price ” in the 3s ” is really bad news for the whole country, it will impact on practicaly everybody.

    • Skinny 10.1

      Not much dairy conversion’s.going on lately, I suspect plenty of South Pacific Pesos being exchanged to Greenbacks. A little late to reap the full rewards like money trader Key will have, however I may grab a slab while the going is good.

  10. Ovid 11

    With bees under threat from another parasite, here’s a good explainer of their importance and the threats they face.

    • Clean_power 11.1

      I blame Climate Change for the demise of the bees. It must be the reason.

      • Gosman 11.1.1

        I blame Capitalism. It is always Capitalism’s fault. The collapse of the Roman empire was caused by Capitalism don’t you know.

        • adam

          good to see we can throw you on the barricades.

        • Colonial Viper

          I blame Capitalism. It is always Capitalism’s fault. The collapse of the Roman empire was caused by Capitalism don’t you know.

          It was caused by out of touch elites who because they were insulated by wealth and bureaucracy from the realities on the ground, did not understand until too late how bad they were fucking up.

      • Gosman 11.1.2

        I blame Capitalism. It is always Capitalism’s fault. The collapse of the Roman empire was caused by Capitalism don’t you know.

        • Ovid

          I’m actually kind of confident that bees will be saved because they have such a direct and demonstrable economic benefit. So there’s a lot of research money going into them and solving this problem. The first chemical company that comes up with a pesticide that doesn’t impact bees is going to make money hand over fist.

        • Skinny

          Your brain appears to be stuck in repeat mode Gosman. Must be the failing Rockstar economic outlook causing a glitch. I imagine you have been walking around in circles muttering “John Key is my hero where is the Rockstar I can not compute….bring on the encore.’

        • Paul

          Aren’t you concerned by the demise of bees?

      • adam 11.1.3

        You struggle understanding science and data ah Clean_power. Well no worry, you can go to a night class and …. no wait national axed the funding to those classes. Nope sorry, you will just have to stay an ignorant Tory lick spittle.

      • Paul 11.1.4

        Aren’t you concerned by the demise of bees?

  11. Molly 12

    Interesting review of Tomorrow’s schools 25 years on, to be found on Evening Report.

    Like any changes to the educational system – the long term effects effects are what is required to be considered rather than the short term goals. Charter school aficionados take note.

    • adam 12.1

      Lockwood Smiths misadventure, exposed. Thanks for the link Molly – well worth the read.

      • Gosman 12.1.1

        Why is Lockwood smith responsible for this? I thought the Tomorrow School’s reforms were implemented by the Fourth Labour Government.

    • Gosman 12.2

      The issues there have hardly anything to do with Tomorrow’s schools and more to do with parents moving so they can get their children in to higher decile schools. Considering lower decile schools get more funding per pupil than higher decile schools the situation would be much worse if the reforms were not made. How exactly is tomorrow schools responsible for the situation?

      • adam 12.2.1

        Read the papers provided by Lockwood Smith when he was the minister, and what was the desired outcome of tomorrow schools – the programme and implementation.

        • Gosman

          No, how about you expand on why you think the article Molly linked to shows a failing with Tomorrow Schools rather than what I suspect is merely parents moving to areas where they think their kids will get better education based on the knowledge that is available to them?

  12. Charles 13

    Who is Chris Trotter, really, and what does he want with the Bogans? Maybe he was taking the piss?

    Chris argues Labour could do worse than go after the Bogan vote: that elusive sub-feeder group of the stereotypical Waitakere Man he’s spent his recent blogging life demonising. Now he paints them as the long-haired unshaven equivalent of the silent-but-infamous “kiwi-battler”, and that their values hold the keys to Labour refinding its roots.

    No Chris, Labour know how to go after the people, as a whole, and fund, supply, and maintain access to essential services and life requirements irrespective of who they are or what they think or how long their hair is, or which cartoon stereotype they correspond to. They just don’t want to anymore.

    “So are you saying we shouldn’t listen to the poor, the gays, Maori, women, transgender people, immigrants?”
    “No, Chris. We should give them the same care and focus on their needs as they see it as we do anyone else.”
    “Doesn’t sound very middle-class oriented.”
    “No, Chris, it isn’t.”
    “Who would we fight, who would we blame, who’d be the enemy?”
    “Ourselves. We’re the enemy, haven’t you noticed?”
    “You’re nuts!”
    “I’m glad you think so.”

    • Gosman 13.1

      I think he is trying to influence the wider left to embrace traditional supporters who they have drifter away from. But if you don’t want to do this and would prefer to denigrate this section of society go for it.

      • Charles 13.1.1

        Yawn, just addressed that. But shit, why read when you can…. what is it you do here again?

      • crashcart 13.1.2

        As someone who grew up a Westy I think you are under estimating their social empathy. One thing I found was that when you fell on hard times there was always someone with a couch and a meal they were willing to share. You had to really mooch off a mate before he would even start thinking of telling you to sort your self out.

        By the way a lot of the guys and girls I knew back then were Labour voters long before I moved away from National. There is a vast gap between the so called Waitakere man and a good old fasioned Westy.

    • Puckish Rogue 14.1

      That is good news

      • maui 14.1.1

        Probably not a good time to go counting the numbers of homeless on cities main streets, cars parked at Wynyard Quarter, or see what the City Mission has to deal with.

        • wyndham

          Just had visitors from Oz. Both expressed surprise and concern at “the level of poverty that is apparent in NZ”.
          Incidentally also highly critical of our TV programming.
          Am I right in sensing a gathering storm; that we are heading for a southern hemisphere Greece? Or am I just depressed?

          • Colonial Viper

            There are problems approaching
            The bottom quarter of NZers already live in dire circumstances
            More joining shortly

            Meanwhile – Labour very concerned about the rate at which $800K Auckland houses are becoming less affordable.

            • RedLogix

              Interesting anecdata only. We tend to shop only once or maybe twice a fortnight so when we do it’s a full trolley.

              Was back in Auckland last week and did a supermarket trip for my dad, plus visitors. Full trolley = NZ$320 @ Pack&Save

              Came home and needed to do another shop. Full trolley = A$205 @ ALDI’s

              Similar items although obviously not identical. Allow for currency conversion at 1.1 and GST @ 1.15 the NZ equivalent price of the ALDI’s trolley would be about NZ$260

              Given the minimum wage here is around A$23 per hour – well you can see where I’m coming from.

              • Colonial Viper

                Its not cows being farmed over on this side, its Kiwis

              • Lanthanide

                Cost of living for food and clothing in NZ is insane compared to America.

                Flash ‘designer’ $100+ jeans here are $20 over there.

          • Gosman

            Considering Australian and New Zealand have similar rates of poverty it seems unusual your visitors will have seen levels majorly different from what they experience in Australia (unless they don’t visit where the poorer people live in Oz)

            • crashcart

              Anyone who has walked down George Street in Sydney will be able to atest to the numbers of people sleeping rough. I am surprised that an Australian would just straight up comment on poverty in NZ. Even smaller area’s like Townsville, Cairns, Darwin and Rockingham have very visable signs of poverty.

              Of course it may be that out side of Sydney most of those effected are of Aboriginal decent and so probably aren’t taken into consideration by the average Australian.

            • adam

              You got it in one Gosman. Many of the rural communities where there is poverty, are way off the grid. Having visited a few in my time – via a long plane flight. There is a bit in urban landscape too – but those areas were generally unheard of/not spoken about – if you had not lived there for a while. Not like, say Auckland and our huge, city wide homeless problem.

              That said, my time in Aussie was in the West, Victoria and South Australia.

    • Skinny 14.2

      Oh right that explains (certainly no excuse) for the Winz managements behavior in Taupo. Got their bonus payments for rejecting welfare claims to make Tolley’s books look brighter. Too much champagne on the taxpayer by the looks. Let’s hope they get turfed to the other side of the Winz counter…and rejected.

  13. Penny Bright 15

    Who’s in Auckland and today can help to hold a banner /placard?

    Whistleblower/ Media Alert!

    Please do not censor or underplay the importance of this arguably corrupt ‘conflict of interest’ – regarding NZ Prime Minister John Key, in his advocacy for the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA)!

    Follow-up TPPA – WALK AWAY protest today outside Auckland Uni – exposing PM John Key’s shareholding in the Bank of America!

    WHEN: TUESDAY 21 July
    TIME: 1 -5 PM
    WHERE: Symonds St / Grafton Rd intersection – directly outside Auckland Uni.
    WHY? Because Auckland students are back and there are THOUSANDS of them – who yesterday read the message on our banners and placards!


    The FOCUS – again – is that NZ PM John Key is a shareholder in the Bank of America!

    (These Bank of America shares are NOT in a ‘blind trust’!)

    Whose ‘national interest’ is PM John Key serving?

    Is John Key working for US or the U$??



    “Register of Pecuniary and Other Specified Interests of Members of Parliament:
    Summary of annual returns as at 31 January 2015

    (Page 29)

    Rt Hon John Key (National, Helensville)

    2 Other companies and business entities

    Little Nell – property investment (Aspen, Colorado)

    Bank of America – banking ..”

    A LOT of people don’t know this, and it is, in my view, as an anti-corruption ‘Public Watchdog’ an arguably significant corrupt ‘conflict of interest’.

    (In this You Tube clip – John Key admits that he’s a shareholder in the Bank of America, in front of a Grey Power Public Meeting, 3 February 2011.)



    Penny Bright

  14. Ad 16

    Taken from the NZHerald, reprinted from an Australian commentator, and pretty apposite to New Zealand:

    “The problem is that Australia, after decades of effort to diversify, is looking ever more like a petrodollar economy of the Middle East, but without the vast horde of foreign currency reserves to fall back on when commodity prices fall.

    Instead, Australians must borrow to maintain the standards of living that the country has become accustomed to, which even some Greeks will admit is unsustainable.”

    • Sanctuary 16.1

      Taken from UK daily Telegraph, a right wing cheerleader that hates seeing countries like Australia and France defy the orthodoxy and periodically prints Cassandra like stories on the fate of both.

  15. Tautoko Mangō Mata 17

    This comment at the end of David Parker’s opinion piece in the Herald is one which is of relevance to TPPA decisions.

    “National may wish its dynasty to last forever, but democracy requires that future governments not be shackled by National’s ideology.”

    IF Tim Groser and the National Party cabinet commit NZ to the TPPA, then this will surely shackle future governments.

    Labour, let’s hear it from you, “STOP THE TPPA”

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      David Parker does not consider himself an opponent of the TPPA, nor a supporter of opponents of the TPPA.

    • Gosman 17.2

      You are aware you can leave international agreements aren’t you? If NZ decided to leave the UN for example there is little the UN could do for example.

      • Colonial Viper 17.2.1

        How do you know that the TPPA has an Agreement exit process?

        You are aware that there is no legal exit process out of, for example, the EU and the Eurozone, right?

  16. maui 18

    Seriously what the F is going on here, I’ve hit peak Max Key for sure. 5 major NZ news outlets posted some or all of Max’s holiday video yesterday, but wait there’s still more! Media going to great lengths to write anything on the beloved PM’s son.



    • McFlock 18.1

      someone’s seriously plugging the boy’s image. It’s been going on for days.

      It might be going from dirty politics to distraction politics, but I think it’s equally likely that some publicist is trying to prepare the ground for him as a broadcaster, building “celebrity”. Throw money at a few photo spreads, next thing you know he’ll be on dancing with the stars or some bullshit like that, then get a few part time but 5 or 6 figure microphone jobs.

      Meh. More vacuities on the airwaves.

      • greywarshark 18.1.1

        Talking about airwaves. Media guy Paul? said on 9toNoon this morning that Radionz is sacking 20 with 6 new jobs opening up net 14. All seasoned workers no doubt, like gold. No rise in funding from gummint for 8 years.
        Strumming my pain with his fingers
        Singing my life with his words
        Killing me softly with his song.’
        Yes, yek killing me softly?

      • maui 18.1.2

        Do we have the next Pebbles Hooper?

        Seriously though, in any normal world once Key is not Prime Minister his son should pretty much cease to exist in the eyes of media.

      • Paul 18.1.3

        I suspect Roughan.

    • Draco T Bastard 18.2

      Perhaps the MSM is getting us used to him so that when JK hands over the countries reigns to him we won’t be too bothered by the disappearance of democracy and the open implementation of our new aristocracy.

    • infused 18.3

      Like I said yesterday, it was all a PR ploy, and everyone fell for it. PR 101.

      Max is getting built up.

    • whateva next? 18.4

      ……..and yet we are supposed to leave the children alone, so stop thrusting them down our throats please.

    • Sanctuary 19.1

      Everyone I know think Gower is a completely tool, with opinions ranging from he is a bit of of a wierdo to he is compensating for being so ugly.

      So, my view: Little punches Gower, Labour soars in polls.

      • Puckish Rogue 19.1.1

        Or it proves Littles buckling under the pressure and can’t handle the awful truth

        So really it won’t change peoples minds all that much

        • Sanctuary

          Labour’s talking past you to the real people bro, you know – the people who can’t afford to buy a house in Auckland. Just ask around your office, Labour is getting huge kudos at the water cooler.

          • Puckish Rogue

            My office is in Christchurch, which offers a better lifestyle and way more affordable housing

            I’ve tried engaging the people I work with and it doesn’t matter if I mention Key or Little their eyes tend to glaze over so I don’t bother

            • Sanctuary

              That what happens when everyone is married to their sister, I guess.

              • Puckish Rogue

                Hmm lets see

                A. Live in a city where you can’t afford to buy a home, very expensive just to live, spending hours commuting, your mayor is Len Brown

                B. Live in a city where you can afford to buy/build, not expensive to live, commuting in under an hour, has plenty of work available and your mayor isn’t Len Brown

                Tell me again why living in Christchurch is such a joke

              • Clemgeopin

                That is being sexist!

          • Colonial Viper

            Labour’s talking past you to the real people bro, you know – the people who can’t afford to buy a house in Auckland

            “real people” could not afford to buy a house in Auckland by 2004/2005. Now, they are talking to “real people” who are tired of being outbid on $800K villas.

            • Clemgeopin

              You keep muttering your same mantra. 2004? Where were you? Did you raise the issue like you are doing now? Was the government then selling off state houses? Was the foreign money from China coming in at such huge amounts as now? Is there a huge crisis now or not? Should the government do something about it now or simply reminiscence about 2004 and some other year like 1904?

        • Draco T Bastard

          No, it definitely proved that Gower was attacking Labour and Little rather than trying to be a journalist.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Gower proved that a long long time ago, and didn’t need any help from us, let alone the leader of the NZLP.

          • ropata

            Gower’s ego compels him to dominate the ‘news’ with his pissing contests, rather than do any real reporting

      • Skinny 19.1.2

        A jack up to help Key out of the data jam. Notice Key using Gowers stupid line of questioning in the House today. Most Kiwi’s will be thinking Key’s antics are not funny in the least, actually I think they would rather he cut the crap and ban non resident foreigners buying our property.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Why wouldn’t Key take advantage of Littles endorsement of race-baiting?

          • Skinny

            OK well according to Hooton on Nine to Noon yesterday National failed to take the bait and bite. Looks like he was wrong as the head clown of the National Party circus couldn’t help himself ( just like ponytail pulling) so people will still be angry with him till he plucks false data out of his arse.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 19.1.3

        Yeah, and he didn’t punch him though, did he.

        Next time, I suggest Little simply looks at the camera and says “pfft”, or “do you have a question?”

        • Puckish Rogue

          Thats actually quite good advice so of course it won’t be listened to

          • Skinny

            Just another illustration of the media either playing the Patsy questions game or getting dealt to by member or cronies of this corrupt regime in power.

            Speaking of which, (you heard it here first) expect Radio New Zealand will have little choice but to issue an apology to Mr Tung…..you know Judith Collins husband. After bully boy Tung continues to throw his weight around threatening legal action against any media who dare question his involvement in the dodgy swamp Kauri trade.


            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Yeah, he’s only a director of one of the companies involved (“Oravida Bleach Inc.”, or something). It would be far more damaging to his reputation to point out that he’s married to that vindictive trash Judith Collins.

              • Skinny

                Unlike those media outlets who have been threatened and muzzled, unfortunately for Tung, if he doesn’t settle down and crawl back under his rock he and Judith share ‘he and the kauri company he works for’ will get so much bad press their operation in Ruakaka will be driven out of Northland with their tales between their legs.

                At any stage we choose a very public (widely covered by all media) protest and hard line picket can be arranged where nothing gets in or out of their depot.

                So go ahead punk make our day and press the button!

      • Clemgeopin 19.1.4


      • James 19.1.5

        “he is compensating for being so ugly”

        So now its acceptable to question peoples professional capability because of their physical appearance?

    • Anne 19.2

      The language Gower used falls into the catagory of defamation imo. Labour should announce they are seeking to take legal action against Patrick Gower and TV3.

      • tinfoilhat 19.2.1

        My computer doesn’t like the clip for some reason, what was it that Gower said ?

        • Anne

          He was rude and bullying and wouldn’t let Little answer anything properly. He accused Andrew Little of “cooking up statistics because he knew it was going to hurt people”. That is shameful and Little should demand an apology. He went on to say “He (Little) only did it for the headline.

          1. It wasn’t Andrew Little who released the information, it was Phil Twyford.
          2. I have never seen any reporter act in such a rude and jeering way to any interviewee. And that’s saying something where Gower is concerned.
          3. No other member of the media pack was able to ask a question.

      • Puckish Rogue 19.2.2

        As a National voter I absolutely agree with this

    • One Anonymous Bloke 19.3

      Please, someone tell Andrew Little that everyone already knows why you don’t wrestle with a pig and he doesn’t need to demonstrate.

      Patrick Gower talks trash, and in doing so, speaks only of himself.

      • Puckish Rogue 19.3.1

        Exactly, if the people of NZ see the real Little Andy the next election will be just like his performance in New Plymouth so he needs to keep his cool

        • One Anonymous Bloke


          Thanks for your concern.

          • Puckish Rogue

            Always glad to lend a hand but seriously if Angry Andy wants to be PM the worst thing he could is be himself

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Polly wanna cracker?

              • Gangnam Style

                I wouldn’t worry too much, TV3s ratings are abysmal anyway, or Gower, “Pfft!” indeed! (& personally I think Gower is crap anyway so watching Little take no shit from him was awesome to see, but yeah just a look of disdain next time would suffice.)

                MOST WATCHED

                One News: 853,290 (TV ONE, 6:00pm – 7:00pm)
                Border Security: 660,260 (TV ONE, 7:30pm – 8:05pm)
                Seven Sharp: 641,720 (TV ONE, 7:00pm – 7:30pm)
                The Force: 632,890 (TV ONE, 8:05pm – 8:35pm)
                Shortland Street: 457,770 (TV2, 7:00pm – 8:00pm)

                MOST WATCHED EVENING (7.30pm – 11pm)

                Border Security: 660,260 (TV ONE, 7:30pm – 8:05pm)
                The Force: 632,890 (TV ONE, 8:05pm – 8:35pm)
                My Kitchen Rules: 343,220 (TV2, 8:00pm – 9:20pm)
                Criminal Minds: 314,190 (TV ONE, 8:35pm – 9:30pm)
                Married At First Sight: 240,410 (TV3, 8:30pm – 9:35pm)

                MOST WATCHED ON TV3

                3 News: 246,630 (6:00pm – 7:00pm)
                Married At First Sight: 240,410 (8:30pm – 9:35pm)
                Come Dine With Me NZ: 148,840 (7:00pm – 7:30pm)
                Reality Trip: 133,640 (9:35pm – 10:35pm)
                Inside Story: 129,870 (8:00pm – 8:30pm)

            • McFlock

              see – you’re just fucking game-playing while the country circles down the drain under this government.

              I hope that in real live you (even inadvertantly) do something that actually helps people in a real way, rather than just facilitating speculators or other parasites. It would be a shame if you were a net-loss from the well-being of the rest of the human species.

        • half crown

          I see PR you like to call Andrew Little Little Andy. Excellent as I have no problems with people trying to belittle the opposition politicians or politicians they don’t like by calling them derogatory names, that’s why I love to refer to Key as a lying perverted money trading fucking spiv.

          The only difference between you calling Andrew Little Little Any and me calling Key a lying perverted money trading fucking spiv. is the fact that
          Andrew Little is neither little in stature or height, whereas Key is a lying perverted money trading fucking spiv.

    • Clemgeopin 19.4

      Paddy Gower is an arsehole that needs to be put in its right place where the Sun don’t shine. He isn’t a credible journalist. A loathsome right wing fart.

      • b waghorn 19.4.1

        Growers doing a real job on little on the news at the moment.

        • Clemgeopin

          What do you mean?

          • b waghorn

            Cut and edited the story to make Little look as bad as possible then finishes with his own little one sided stand up. I could never be a politician I’d make the little twerp swallow his mike.

            • Skinny

              Meanwhile over on One News Little came across well. Paddy loves to mash up his footage to suit his own agenda.

              • b waghorn

                paddy sure does. Didn’t catch one news but hoskings took English s vague comments about murmurs he heard in China and turned them into a international disaster . How does this country rid itself of these sycophantic loser s ??

      • Rodel 19.4.2

        Stranger to Clemgeopin.” I resent your calling Paddy Gower an arsehole”
        Clemgeopin.’Sorry, are you a friend of his?”
        Stranger.”No I’m an arsehole”

    • Charles 19.5

      Andrew Little has carefully cultivated the facial expressions of a small business owner that has just been told the employee he fired illegally is taking him to court. hahahhahaaha

      John Key’s expressions are usually of a rich boy saying, nup. nup. nup. don’t care. nup. people will die but it won’t be me. nup. nup. you’re poor anyway. nup. nup.

      What a bunch. How can we possibly choose?

    • Chooky 20.1

      +100 Prickles….yup …I know of Australians being pushed out of their own housing market

  17. weka 21

    Handy graphic from the Greens showing just how many NZers who made submissions wanted tougher CC targets than what the govt ended up chosing.

    h/t @danylmc

  18. Morrissey 22

    How Seinfeld became a bad joke:
    The threat of a hyper-vigilant left-wing outrage machine has been greatly exaggerated

    A millionaire tells a dumb joke and nobody laughs — and that’s proof we’re all oppressed by social activists?

    by ARTHUR CHU, Salon, June 12, 2015

    Jerry Seinfeld is the latest brave middle-aged white man to weigh in on the “creepy” ascendance of humorless p.c. SJW anti-free-speech scolds. We know the drill now–we’ve heard it from comedians like Seinfeld and Patton Oswalt and, to a lesser degree, Louis C.K. and Chris Rock. We’ve heard it packaged in a different format from Very Serious media commentators like Jonathan Chait, Laura Kipnis and, most recently, an anonymous white male adjunct professor whose left-wing students “terrify” him.

    It’s a familiar, tired drill. Point to instances of creeping overreaction by angry left-wing young people in the classroom, at protests and especially on Tumblr or Twitter. Portray these forces as a terrifying, swelling horde of enforcers with the power to totally destroy the lives of good old hardworking members of the chattering class like yourself. Talk about how this army of Social Justice Stormtroopers has successfully create a stifling Orwellian monoculture, especially on the Internet, where all of us live in constant fear of saying anything the least bit “offensive” lest our lives be ruined and as a result all online discourse has been stripped down to the level of catchphrase-spewing party apparatchiks seeking to avoid Stalinist purges.

    This is clearly an extremely compelling narrative when it comes to a lot of people’s personal fears, because it’s a narrative they spin out of comparatively little evidence. It’s not that there’s no such thing as a left-wing witch hunt or that people haven’t been harmed by them — it’s that, for something that’s so scary that it warrants trend piece after trend piece on a biweekly basis, it seems pretty hard for these pundits to come up with actual examples of harm to themselves.

    Daniel Tosh, whose nasty rape joke at an audience member spurred the comedy world to rally around him waving flags with apocryphal Voltaire quotes – yeah, he got a lot of mean tweets, and got analyzed in a bunch of think pieces, and got a really unkind (but hilarious) Onion article written about him.

    And … that was it. His stand-up career is still going fine. He’s still on Twitter. He still has a damn top-rated show on Comedy Central, which makes him better off than 99.9 percent of all stand-up comedians in the country. (A show, by the way, which derives a lot of its humor from mocking people who are already being mercilessly made fun of or criticized on the Internet, which adds a little bit of irony to this whole “lynch mob” thing.)

    Jonathan Chait combs through years of outraged viral right-wing posts on Facebook about left-wing atrocities but only comes up with one story of significant material harm, a kid being fired from a college newspaper, after Chait himself has gotten embroiled in controversy for trying to get journalists fired from newspapers for doing their job wrong. (As always, it’s actually about ethics in journalism.)

    Laura Kipnis has a stronger argument for having been mistreated, even though the Title IX system she criticizes did, in fact, end up letting her completely off the hook — and even though the actual reason for the complaint against her wasn’t her “wrong opinion” but her spreading untruths about a student embroiled in a sexual harassment claim against a professor, which pretty much every “political correctness gone mad” pundit talking about the Kipnis case has ignored.


    Read more….

  19. Chooky 23

    Makes Sense…

    “Labour believes if you have the right to live here you have the right to buy here, but not otherwise. That means all citizens and residents can. This will apply to all ethnicities.”

    ‘David Parker: Nats bet house on trade deals’


  20. Chooky 24

    Not racism!…Go Labour for calling out the problem as it is…and the Chinese know it:

    ‘Wall of Chinese capital buying up Australian properties’

    The “wall of Chinese capital” hitting property markets in Sydney and Melbourne will not ease up until the government introduces its anti-money laundering legislation, says an expert in ‘flight capital’.

    James Tee, an ethnic Chinese property developer whose business specialises in “capital expatriation” – that is, getting money out of China and into his property developments in Malaysia – told Fairfax Media the exodus of capital from China was accelerating, thanks to the government’s anti-corruption drive.

    “We have been tracking this for two years,” says Tee. Those outflows from China are compounded by the flight of capital out of Canada which is now “bursting” to find a home in Australia.
    Due to the bubble in Canadian house prices and ensuing concerns over social dislocation, Canada’s government shut down its investor visa program last year. Some 40,000 Chinese visa applicants with a minimum loan to governments of $C800,000 were handed back their capital.

    “That’s roughly $32 billion,” says Tee. “The Canadian government said: ‘We don’t want your money anymore’ and that capital is now hitting the Sydney market.”…

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/business/comment-and-analysis/wall-of-chinese-capital-buying-up-australian-properties-20150628-ghztdf.html#ixzz3gVPV2Oew

    • b waghorn 24.1

      This shows that all the hand ringing that’s gone on here is just the overly PC getting them self into a lather about the wrong thing they need to wake up, its bad enough that labour have to fight the likes of Gower but being attacked buy so called progressive s on the far left is just pathetic.

  21. Facetious 25

    A dismal underperformance by Mr Little in his confrontation with Gower. Much to improve in the future.

    • Agreed, facetious. Little has already lifted Labour up in the polls to the point where he can be the next Prime Minister and I can only see improvement in the future. Good times!

  22. greywarshark 26

    I didn’t hear about Shane Te Pou, ‘a former Labour party official’ complaining, according to Radionz, that his Chinese wife ‘had her personal details released in Labour’s housing data leak’ This from 17/7/2015.

    1 No details of any kind were released as I understand it, except the bald percentages based on likely ethnic names.
    2 Mr Te Pou has himself breached his wife’s privacy, not Labour.
    3 He sounded confused and incomprehensible, and not a good advocate for any point he tried to make, or Labour.

    • Clemgeopin 26.1

      If nothing else comes of this episode, at least it has got rid of a few pretentious low IQ PC dimwits out of Labour. All good, I say!

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