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Open mike 23/07/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 23rd, 2015 - 129 comments
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openmikeOpen mike is your post.

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

Step up to the mike …

129 comments on “Open mike 23/07/2015”

  1. Morrissey 1

    Who are the worst performers in National’s dismal caucus?

    In 1972, National ran a campaign with the slogan “Man for Man, the Strongest Team”. It was a joke way back then; Labour was significantly more talented and energetic than National. Anyone who squirmed throughout Kelvin Davis’s failure to counter the lightweight but aggressive Paul Henry yesterday morning will be well aware that today’s Labour opposition is certainly failing to impress; however, National supporters are the very last people that should be passing comment on this.

    I started to compile this list yesterday on Google Groups, in the course of a dispute with a fanatical National Party troll who had sneered at “Labour’s desperation and lack of intellectual rigour”…..

    1.) HEKIA PARATA. Poor old Hekia Parata: I know you’re only filibustering when you make a demand to see something which is obvious to anyone who has lived in this country for the last ten years, but a great place to start is her intellectual meltdown in August 2011, when she started burbling thusly: “Well, ahhhh, ummmm, it includes a variety of various variables. We have a suite of variables. Ahhhhh, look….”

    Open mike 30/08/2011

    2.) CRAIG FOSS. One of the world’s nicest guys, but incompetent. The fact that he was the DEPUTY to the most incompetent National front-bencher, Hekia Parata, hasn’t helped his credibility one iota. Foss will forever be synonymous, sadly for him, with the Novopay débâcle…


    3.) LOUISE UPSTON. We presume she is following some neck-strengthening regime at a gymnasium, since she has to be in top form to keep nodding affirmatively during parliamentary Question Time—her only discernible rôle.

    4.) TODD McCLAY. What did anyone expect from the son of one of the vilest hypocrites, and criminals, to ever enter parliament? Is his reprobate of an old man out of the Big House yet?


    I might add to it in coming days….

    Coming up soon….
    Maggie Barry, Melissa Lee, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga and Chris Bishop.

    The original post was on this site…..

  2. Paul 2

    As neoliberalism gradually dismembers the country, it is now the middle class who are feeling the pinch.
    The revolution devours its own.
    Sadly, by the time they wake up and vote out all the parties who support the Tandian cult, the TPP will will be signed and it’ll be too late.

    ‘Increasing living costs are giving rise to the “middle-class poor”, an expert says, as a new report shows a large chunk of Canterbury families are under financial stress.’


    • Puckish Rogue 2.1

      I find this interesting, as someone who makes less than the average or median wage and has a mortgage I’d have to ask what these people are doing?

      • b waghorn 2.1.1

        Say you had an unexpected bill of $5k or where sacked tomorrow how would you be financially in three weeks time. Because I’m similar to your case but there’s not a lot of wriggle room.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Well my hot water cylinder needs replacing but luckily my mortage is up for renewal very shortly so that takes care of that plus I live in christchurch so jobs are easy to come by down here

          Seriously anyone having problems in Auckland should come down to Christchurch

          • McFlock

            yes because relocation is free and there are no social ties keeping people close to sick relatives or even just keeping kids in the same school with their friends /sarc

            • Puckish Rogue

              Jeepers lifes sometimes tough? Who’da thunk it? Ah well better not try to do anything to improve your lot because its a bit hard

              • McFlock

                More like maybe the interweb assurances of tory shills as to where the grass is greener tend to ignore the practicalities involved in jumping the fence. Even assuming that the grass is still greener when you finally get to it.

          • Draco T Bastard

            My nephew’s a builder. He looked at coming down to Christchurch, help with the rebuild etc. After doing the sums it was obvious that he couldn’t afford to as the amount being paid was well below the cost to live.

            It wasn’t a case of life being hard but the fact that he would have ended up paying someone else to work for them.

            Even this long after the earthquakes I doubt if there’s a lot of any other work to do.

            Also, the hot water cylinder is a minor expense – you shouldn’t need to take out a mortgage to replace it.

            • Puckish Rogue

              I’m not taking out a mortgage to replace it, just adding it to the existing mortgage

              • Draco T Bastard

                Which you shouldn’t need to do. Doing so is the action of someone in poverty. But I’m sure that that bank, who will create the money for you, will be happy to get the interest for doing nothing.

            • Naki man


              “My nephew’s a builder. He looked at coming down to Christchurch, help with the rebuild etc. After doing the sums it was obvious that he couldn’t afford to as the amount being paid was well below the cost to live”

              Sounds like he has your negative cant do attitude.
              Average rate for a builder in Christchurch $26.77 per hour
              I could easily live on that, many people do.
              I was in the building industry for 20 years and worked away in Wellington for six months until I could get a local job. There is nothing difficult about it.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Average rate for a builder in Christchurch $26.77 per hour

                He says as if that’s a lot of money.

                My nephew usually get $35/hour + GST. After expenses (my nephew’s self-employed) that comes down to somewhat less than the minimum wage. $27/hour isn’t worth considering especially with the inflated rents in Christchurch.

                • Naki man


                  $26.77 is the employee wage rate, If he only charges $35/hour +GST he would be far better of on wages.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    It’s not a question of charging – it’s a question of what people are willing to pay. If he tries charging more than that then he doesn’t get hired.

                    And the most he ever got offered for Christchurch work was sub $25/hour + GST and that was only a couple of months ago so I really have NFI WTF you got $26.77 from.

              • millsy

                My father’s mate owns a caryard in CHC and he reckons all these ‘cashed up’ tradies who come in and buy these utes, etc get them repo’d a few weeks later.

                Not too sure if they are as cashed up as we thought.

                But anyway. from where I am sitting, the earthquake rebuild is the modern equivalent of the gold and land rushes of the mid 19th centuries — a big free for all with a few people getting rich, and the rest of them losing their shirts.

                If only we hadn’t of chopped ‘Auntie MOW’.

                Anyway, there are a lot of cheap houses ($40-50000 in the likes of Ohura, Taumarunui, Kawerau, and Murupara. No jobs though, but if you bought say, 54 New Road in Taumarunui for 50,000 (which is for sale at the moment), which is a deposit on a house anywhere else, you would only have to pay rates/insurance of a little under $60 per week $25 a week for a broadband package, and a bike to commute (only use a car if it is wet or for emergencies) you would be living the dream — having a poor paying job could work.

        • Rosie

          Yep. Our head gasket blew on our car. No wiggle room for finding $2.9K. Paying that off for the next 60 weeks.

          Then theres’ unexpected vet bills. All our savings went along time ago.

          As for losing your job, Mr R is in the position of being compelled to pay income protection insurance. That would last 6 months to cover the mortgage.

          No one had income protection insurance years ago. You didn’t need it. Kind of a racquet really, a form of subtle extortion. Will be interested to see what Jane Kelsey has to say about the insurance industry in her new book.

          Now days, life is unstable and the future is uncertain. Maybe that’s how they super wealthy like it. Don’t want the ordinary people feeling too comfortable in their lives, that might make them a bit more, you know, equal.

    • Rosie 2.2

      Some one posted this fairfax article a few days ago. Interesting reading and not surprising.

      Remember wages have been stagnant for many years for many people, rates and utility bills are going up, insurance costs are up, accommodation is becoming more and more expensive in the cities, petrol has gone up, we had an increase in every individual’s living costs of 2.5% six years ago and there’s no relief in sight.

      There’s only so many increases households can absorb, while wages and salaries remain the same.

      For us, we are on one good salary, (not mine, I’m unemployed and unwell) but every week is a struggle. That one good salary has been the same for six years and costs keep going up up up. Going for a coffee in the weekend is our social highlight of the week.
      There’s no holidays, movies, dinners, day trips, no new clothes and shoes. No one comes for dinner these days as we can’t afford the extra food.

      I hate to think how much worse our situation would be if we hadn’t left Auckland nine years ago.

      Maybe scratch the surface a bit more and you’ll find that life in NZ is only sweet for those on a very high income, or come from a wealthy family.

  3. hello 3

    Milk prices. The international milk price is at a 10 year low but at the supermarket I am still paying the highest prices ever.

    How can we get the government to look into the monopoly pricing of our domestic milk.

    • Skinny 3.1

      Poor old cow cocky gets stiffed by the supermarket cartels. Expect to see more farm gates sales as some dairy farmers join the growing working poor. Where is Shane Jones when ya need him? Kicked back on a deck chair in some Pacific paradise pondering his return to political life. Meanwhile Clayton Cosgrove gives thought of taking up the fight, then falls back asleep and leaves it up Labour’s big hitter David Shearer…chuckle.

    • Saarbo 3.2

      Something that has recently come out, is China still has huge stocks of Whole Milk Powder,


      Basically most commentators expected the large stockpiles of WMP in China to be consumed by the end of 2014, as it turns out they still exist. The really worrying thing about this is that it seems that Fonterra really don’t have good visibility/information on China while at the same time basing a big part of NZ’s Dairy growth strategy on this country. Its seems that China’s consumption of WMP is much lower than we (and the dairy industry in USA and EU) have been led to believe. I suspect that the Chinese have NOT been in a rush to put the West right on this, knowing the free market will over-supply leading to China importing well below cost for many years to come. Clever buggers.

      My guess is that we wont see prices over $5.50 KG ms for years because it seems that many of the assumptions around Chinese/Asian demand were wrong, it also means that regional NZ is going to go through hard times for many years to come.

      I think there is upside in this though, our NZ $ will stay low helping other importers and the tourist industry plus NZ will really re-establish itself as the lowest cost dairy producers on the cost curve. Enviromentally this will also be positive as farmers will have to go back to grass-only-feed, leading to lower nitrate levels leaking off farms and improved waterways etc. So it isn’t all bad.

      • Chooky 3.2.1

        @Saarbo… agree with you about the possible upside for the environment….however a whole lot of Chinese might start buying bankrupt NZ dairy farms … especially with Chinese ‘tourists’ ( business opportunists) pouring into the country

        …and while jonkey nact persuaded Fonterra NOT to export to China when we had the chance ( NZ was exempt from Russia’s ban on dairy imports) …now China is building a giant milk farm to export to Russia

        … based on NZ expertise, experience and NZ cow stock….NZ exports cows to China…


        ( how about that for NZ government stupidity and Chinese duplicity!)

        “Prior said that Prime Minister John Key had recently warned Fonterra not to take advantage of the boycott, yet Pepsi and Danone had invested heavily in the Russian dairy sector through two major Russian companies.

        “Because the boycott is country-specific, naturally they [multinationals] have an opportunity to switch to sourcing from South American subsidiaries or whatever – we’ve given something for absolutely nothing,” Prior said…


        • Chooky

          correction to 3.2.1.. …Jonkey Nact persuaded Fonterra NOT to export to RUSSIA when we had the chance

        • Saarbo

          That interesting. I attended a Fonterra presentation recently and a lot of farmers were asking Fonterra why it isn’t supplying Russia. Its a good question. Im not up with the whole geo-political ramifications of sending dairy products to Russia, but can we afford NOT to send product to Russia.

          • Chooky

            I would say we can NOT afford to ignore any potential trading partner for dairy

            …especially if it means the difference between dairy farmers going to the wall

            ….NZ farmers being forced off their land

            … and New Zealand farm land being bought up by foreigners

      • Naki man 3.2.2

        “Something that has recently come out, is China still has huge stocks of Whole Milk Powder”

        I agree with your post, but that stock pile of over priced WMP cant be to far away from its expiry date.

        • lprent

          WMP is pretty interesting. When stored in bulk and under good conditions, it has a “expiry date: measured in years, and is usually good for a decade. The frigging stuff is effectively as sterile as concrete after processing.

          We also have a stockpile of WMP. Last time I looked at it in the stats department figures, it looked like close to a years supply.

          • Saarbo

            The news just keep getting worse, Ive heard rumours of large stocks of WMP in NZ warehouses, sounds like they are fact.

  4. millsy 4

    Tony Blair. Right of John Key. Discuss.

  5. half crown 5

    “Tony Blair. Right of John Key. Discuss.”

    Who gives a fucking shit, they are both aresholes, and one is a war criminal.

    • McFlock 5.1

      which one?

      A case could be made for both, if the SAS were sending prisoners to be tortured with the knowledge of the government.

  6. esoteric pineapples 6

    “Tenants are being evicted from their communities all over New Zealand and only a limited amount of private and publicly funded housing is being built in its place’ said Vanessa Cole, researcher for the Tamaki Housing Collective, speaking this week at the Unitary Plan Hearings Panel. Vanessa has recently completed a one year masters thesis on the effects of displacement in the affordable housing sector.”

  7. I agree with Labour on this – STOP the flag change rubbish. I don’t really like our existing flag. My choice is the tino rangatiratanga flag. I will not support an alternative so leave it all alone – I quite like the existing situation.


    had to lol with the new reporter on Little’s left

    • Puckish Rogue 7.1

      Headline should have read:

      Labour wants a diversion as their racially-motivated attack didn’t work as well as expected

      • marty mars 7.1.1

        nah – just the constantly changing world spinning through space mate

      • maui 7.1.2

        Labour couldn’t pick two better issues where National are vulnerable and defenceless on in my mind.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Maybe if Little Angry hadn’t have waited until he and Labour were under the pump after outing themselves as racists then it might have meant something but as it is it looks like hes trying to find a distraction

          For the record I favour a change of flag but I’m not really fussed either way

          • lprent

            I think that the point about the flag isn’t so much about changing it or not. It is that the stupid arsehole in charge of it (John Key) appears to have done it on a whim and then *chose* to waste 10’s of millions of taxpayer’s dollars in a process that appears to have been designed to be as wasteful as possible.

            I’d have liked to have seen some information at the start about some real basics like if there was any benefits for NZ (something that I still haven’t seen), if there was widespread support for doing it (it appears that there never was), and what we were trying to achieve (ie the measureables that would define success). In other words the responsible approach to any government expenditure of money.

            None of those things have at yet been done, and they have apparently already wasted $8.4 million for a process that excites history seeking graphic designers and those carefully selected piglets supping at the taxpayers trough.

            Instead we have a two part referendum that looks like some dirtbag’s idea about how to grow support for something that they knew wasn’t ready to go. To me it looks like the actual decision process was John Key jerking off at his desk one day while contemplating his ego.

        • Chooky

          +100 Maui…Labour is on the up and up…gaining traction and momentum ….heading for a BIG WIN at the next Election

          (….although I retain the forlorn hope that maybe this jonkey nact government will be forced to resign before then…. and before they do any more damage to New Zealand.)

          • Puckish Rogue

            I’m almost going to feel bad for you at the next election…almost 🙂

            • Chooky

              lol…well I am feeling good at the moment…jonkey nactional is going down in the polls…and Labour seems to be getting in a few king hits at last that resonate with the public

              btw what is all this about the money in the airport bags?…NZ millions of dollars leaving the country for Hong Kong?…know anything about this Pucky?…what would you suggest….seems highly irregular if not illegal !

              …ill- gotten gains ?…prostitution?.
              …Auckland real estate fees?
              …issues of tax avoidance/evasion?
              …and whats wrong with bank transactions?


    • Skinny 7.2

      Shearer snapper stunt was one of the funniest things I’ve seen by political leader in the House, and it just keeps on giving. Seeing Shearer pleased as punch holding up those snapper was gold. Everyone apart from himself knew he was about to join them in being fried. Unfortunately the religiously touched Cunliffe couldn’t convert enough to the Labour faith.

      Key retorts during question time yesterday “I accept that a whale is a mammal and not a fish. But the last Labour leader that came to Parliament dangling those out like that leader was gone by lunchtime; I reckon he [Little] might be too.”

      • Les 7.2.1

        The P.M. is good at leg pulling isn’t he…actually an expert at…pulling!Blame Fran Mold for the snapper ,hopelessly out of her depth .

  8. Ad 8

    People, watch out for Auckland Council’s fire sale coming up.
    – sea port
    – air port 23%
    – AECT available August 2073 brought forward ($2.1b)
    – film studio in Henderson
    – all the old Council chambers
    – Community centres not worth the upgrade
    – Acceleated land sales as Auckland Development Company seeks fast $$ results off the block

    Share brokers already salivating.

    This is a full Tory attack, report due November.

    Goff needs to come out shortly, it will give him unassailable momentum.

  9. mac1 9

    My ethically-minded daughter sent me this link to remind us that along with the ill-considered decision to withdraw the start-up incentive for Kiwisaver, there is another concern about where our funds go.


    I don’t believe that Bill English had ethical concerns high on his list, though.

    • Puckish Rogue 9.1

      I’d rather they invested in Bethesda, never got into assassins creed but Fallout oh hell yeah!

      • mac1 9.1.1

        I guess from your having read the link, PR, as your reference to Assassins shows, that the point about paying attention to the ethical basis of investments passed you by?

        Is it not important to you as to how we earn our money and who might be harmed in that pursuit of profit and income?

    • Draco T Bastard 9.2

      Blinglish couldn’t possibly have ethics on his list at all as he doesn’t have any.

    • Chooky 9.3

      +100 mac1…this is all pretty concerning…and this one in particular !

      ….”KiwiSavers are, by default, passive players in the highest levels of global capitalism because KiwiSaver funds are shareholders in some of the biggest names in financial services, including some that have been pinged with some enormous fines and have agreed to pay enormous sums to end lawsuits.

      Goldman Sachs is among them. It was described by Rolling Stone magazine in 2009 as “great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.”

      It’s coughed up some staggering fines and settlements for its past actions.

      It is also a staple of KiwiSaver portfolios…..

  10. half crown 10

    It’s the end of the week we are no doubt all stressed out, tomorrow is POETS day so lets have a bit of light relief.

    Came from the Nutters Club


    Team member interviewing a job applicant for a job.

    Team member, Tell me your greatess weakness?

    Job applicant. My honesty

    Team member, I don’t think honesty is a weakness

    Job Applicant, I don’t give a shit what you think.

    Well I laughed.

  11. McFlock 11

    So apparently the focus groups have decided that tugger key is looking a bit like a rich prick.

    The response is that the guy who spent $14,000 on dinner for two whines that he doesn’t have a “lavish” lifestyle, even in his Hawaii mansion.

    • Puckish Rogue 11.1

      So is it that he can afford to do it or that he did it that offends you so much?

      • McFlock 11.1.1

        It’s more that he then tries to pretend that it’s normal, and not at all lavish.
        While a quarter of kids live in poverty.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Hes never hidden his wealth, hes never tried to suggest hes something hes not and $14000 for a meal cooked by Blumenthal and three nights accommodation sounds like he wanted to do something special for his wife which he can afford to do

          But if you think that running the Keys a rich prick line is going to work now after 7 odd years then by all means do so

          • McFlock

            No, you’re avoiding the point (quelle surprise).

            He’s running the line “‘I’m not a ridiculously lavish guy’ “, when he quite obviously is.

            So he is a liar. And the question becomes “why is he lying about this, now?”
            The obvious answer is that National party research has suggested that people don’t like a PM who lives high on the hog when they are struggling. It looks a bit too much like he’s profited off their pain (and given his forex trading and shares in privatised SOEs, it’s probably not far off the truth).

            So ke’s pretending to be just a simple multimillionaire with mansions in at least two countries, a vineyard he doesn’t know about because it’s in a trust, $6k suits, $7k dinners (and three nights accommodation, ok), too many shares to remember, yep, not lavish at all /sarc.

            • Puckish Rogue

              I don’t think he is a ridiculously lavish guy, hes done well but I know “ordinary” kiwis that have holidays in Hawaii, that wear nice suits

              Keys a success and you’re suffering from the tall poppy syndrome

              • Know any “ordinary Kiwis” who own a mansion in Hawaii? Because, that sounds kind of “lavish” to me.

              • McFlock

                Every year, when they own the mansion? Or an occasional stay in a hotel as a special trip?

                “Nice” suits? Or $6k suits pretentiously washed in greenstone?

                You have no fucking idea what “ordinary” is. Tugger’s a liar and you’re his shameless toadying lickspittle.

                • Puckish Rogue

                  Bollix, its not lavish when you’re worth, conservativly, 50 million plus

                  This is the same “rich prick” “one percent” line the left have run since 2008 and look how well its done

                  • McFlock

                    It is exceptionally lavish from the perspective of ordinary New Zealanders, though.

                    And in case you haven’t noticed, this entire thread is in response to a defensive wee puff-piece where tugger pretends he has a simple lifestyle. This isn’t a line “the left” ran. This is a specific line from Key’s own media machine targeted at a general public perception that he’s out of touch.

                    The thing is that it’s backfired, because it just means that greenstone suits and Hawaiian mansions are not “lavish” in his estimation. I doubt most ordinary NZers (who are just struggling to get by) would agree.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      I doubt was NZers would want the leader of NZ to dress shabbily but I’m interested in knowing what is the maximum amount the leader of NZ is allowed to spend on a suit?

                    • McFlock

                      “Allowed”? As much as they want.

                      But if the emperor chooses to spend more money on greenstone-washed suits than Elvis spent on rhinestones, the emperor would be foolish to pretend to ordinary NZers that an emperor’s lifestyle is anything less than lavish.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      I’m quite pleased the Leader of NZ is wearing top-end NZ clothing on the world stage but i get it, anything the left can think of to try to discredit John Key is all good

                      We’ll see how well that works out for the left (I’m guessing it won’t work as well as the left think)

                    • McFlock

                      Oh, as a tory you’re easily impressed by conspicuous and vacuous consumption.

                      But “the left” didn’t start this debate. The nats thought tugger’s lavish lifestyle was alienating New Zealanders, so generated this puff piece. And the puff-piece has backfired, because now you’re explaining how it’s fine that he has a lavish lifestyle wearing suits with an invisible greenstone wash, when the entire point of the article was him explaining how he didn’t live a lavish lifestyle.

                      Methinks you both protest too much.

                    • freedom

                      This could be the perfect time for the PM to finally clarify how much of his salary he donates to charity ! 😉

                    • Tricledrown

                      Putin lavish lifestyles into context.
                      Putin made all his money through hard graft no pun intended.
                      Key likewise selling Merrill Lynch’s Ponzi schemes insider trading and libor started while Key was at Merrill Lynch.

                  • adam

                    Oh poor, poor PR. Your cupidity is showing. Your high priest of money worship, really does like a smug, amoral, elitist.

                    You know the PM is out of touch – because most of us are struggling to even have a holiday, let alone, own, then fly to a second mansion in Hawaii.

  12. Gosman 12

    The Venezuelan government acting like true leftists and forcing farmers to sell their produce to the State. Expect to see more shortages.


    • Puckish Rogue 12.1

      Serves the farmers right for being rich pricks

    • Draco T Bastard 12.2

      Oh noes, people might actually be forced to look after those around them as they use the resources that belong to those around them. Oh, woe are the capitalists…

      • Puckish Rogue 12.2.1

        Damn straight! Nothing says fair like the farmers bailing out the politicians

        • Draco T Bastard

          The farmers never seem to do that. Always seems to be the farmers taking the rest of the country for a ride.

          • Puckish Rogue

            Yup nothing to do with Venezulas socialist policies at all

            • Colonial Viper

              No doubt the US would be very pleased to see the Venezuelan government fall and will be supporting and funding all possible activities in that regard.

            • Draco T Bastard

              The bit you seem to be missing is that you’re preferred option of free-market capitalism isn’t actually providing for the people of Venezuela. When that happens, as it does every time capitalism is tried, then the government needs to step in and take over.

              We see the same things happening here in NZ with a quarter of our children going hungry despite the fact that we produce enough food to feed everyone but our political parties are too scared to do anything about it.

  13. freedom 13

    “A bag containing more than $1 million in Chinese currency was lost at Hong Kong International Airport ” (bold mine)

    “Cathay Pacific Airlines has lost a bag containing $1 million in New Zealand bills at Hong Kong airport.” (bold mine)

    Is it any wonder people get confused?

    Either way it raises the question:
    What was the origin of the $10 million in cash that was being flown out of the country and why wasn’t it deposited via a bank in NZ?

  14. adam 14

    If you have the time. I would recommend this video. The wonderful Chris Hedges talking about the background of his new book.

    • ianmac 15.1

      Always wanted get close and personal to an active volcano. Maybe the mighty photos will have to do.

  15. Lynda Brown 16

    Helen Clark wore Jane Daniels – check the prices.
    She owned 5 houses.
    She enjoyed expensive skiing holidays in Europe and South America and her husband travelled at our expense. Along with their friends Chris Carter and his husband, also at our expense.
    Where was the outrage then?
    John Key pays for his wife on official trips. He has drastically tightened travel and expenses.
    I hate these double standards.
    Surely we are bigger than this – attacking people rather than promoting good policy for the benefit of NZ.

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      Helen Clark is a one percenter and a humanitarian. John Key is a 0.01%’er and a bankster, transferring the wealth of the many to the greedy pockets of the foreign few while ensuring the local elite get their cut.

      Huge difference.

      Even you should be able to figure it out.

    • ianmac 16.2

      Perhaps Lynda we should take note of taxpayers not only pay for the cost of holidays in Hawaii, but also the cost of the security detail who travel with John Key. Someone has to pay for helicopter trips to attend meetings and so on. Where would the comparison end?

    • whateva next? 16.3

      and she earned it, making sure the ladder was still there for others, supporting society in general and balancing the books at the same time.
      Key spends alot of time abroad, taking selfies, making a quick buck from selling hard earned (by previous generations) assets, changing laws to turn us into a low wage economy, avoiding any difficult issues or facts that don’t effect him and his cronies, skimming every last dollar away from society in general for the benefit of his mates in business…….etc.He is tacky and cheap, no class and a very long way from being a statesperson, as Helen was.
      “the emperor has no clothes on”

    • Tricledrown 16.4

      Chris Carter lost his job Helen Clark paid for her own holidays had 4 investment properties that are mortgaged.
      Ministerial Travel costs have gone up considerably since the Clark lead soft right wing government left office.
      Also the Cost of running govt has gone from $145 million a year for the PMs slush under Labour down from the Bolger Shipley $1billion a year inflation adjusted figures.
      Under Key that is back up to $850 million.

  16. Lynda Brown 17

    Guess I am just not one-eyed enough.

    • Puckish Rogue 17.1

      I’mma going to help you out…John Key = bad/evil (depending on the news story of the day) and thats all you need to know

    • Colonial Viper 17.2

      There’s being fair minded, and there is lacking judgement in character. You’re the latter.

  17. Lynda Brown 18

    Fair enough but didn’t they go skiing too? Or did we send Helen off on holiday in Norway without the DPS?
    Meetings etc are surely part of the job not holidays.

    But you have to love the envious excitement as people write about the mansion in Hawaii. It must be their pinnacle of wealth and ostentation!!

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      Key is a member of the trans-national bankster cartel. That is the basic problem.

      • Puckish Rogue 18.1.1

        Dont forget hes a neoliberal as well, just so we can get all the buzzwords in

        • Colonial Viper

          each of these words has deep meanings and implications for the future of this nation and its people, if you care that is.

        • Tricledrown

          PR shifting the blame.
          Robber Barons they were called back in the day.
          Now with expert Media manipulation they are made to look like hero when in reality Banksters are playing a real life game of Monopoly denying more and more people by monopolizing more and more to fewer and fewer rich oligarchs.
          Deliberately undermine democracy to achieve their goal.

        • Paul

          I doubt you have bothered to read Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein.
          As usual you are commenting from an illiterate and uninformed position.
          But that doesn’t stop the usual trolling.

          • Realblue


            [Do try and put some thought and effort into your responses, Realblue. Otherwise you look like, well, a troll. TRP]

    • ianmac 18.2

      No. Don’t think the detail travelled overseas with Helen, and not even around her when at home, walking to the supermarket let alone having them living onsite as they do with your mate Key.

    • whateva next? 18.3

      “But you have to love the envious excitement …” I feel sorry for Key and his need to be “cool”, I would never aspire to have what he has sought Lynda Brown, I cannot imagine a more vacuous life, needing to win and “look” good, at the cost of anyone around him, rather than feel good is a long way from anything I would envy.
      The argument that people are “envious” is generally what greedy people say to justify the obscene wealth gap?

  18. Sacha 19

    Oh dear. A certain problematic bloggeur appears to have burned through all the cash he was collecting to pay for lawyers: http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/279495/slater-accused-of-contempt-of-court

    • Sacha 19.1

      Heh. RNZ reports from today’s court proceedings that the latest person to have blogged on Slater’s behalf is his wife. He has had words with her for breaching his keep-quiet agreement, he reckons.

  19. Prickles 20

    A new affliction spreading across China – might be contagious too. http://sinosphere.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/07/22/turmoil-in-chinas-stock-markets-takes-a-psychic-toll/

  20. Atiawa 21

    The Sydney Morning Herald reported today that the median price for a house in Sydney has hit the $1 million (Aus) mark.
    House prices in Sydney surged 8.4% in the last quarter.
    Low interest rates and increasing numbers of private investors has led to the increase. Young house buyers will be left out of the property ownership market for at least a generation.

  21. Chooky 23

    ankerawshark +100 ….very great news!….and they had a very effective lawyer, in Mai Chen


  22. millsy 24

    Muldoon and family used to holiday up at his bach at Hatfields Beach. Not too sure whay Lange did but doubt if it was extravagant.

    Those were the days.

    • Gangnam Style 24.1

      I holidayed at Hatfields when I was a kid (70s/80s), & I used to see Muldoon walking to the beach & having a dip, relaxing on the sand, just him sometimes with his wife, everyone just left him alone…those were the days huh.

  23. Draco T Bastard 25

    Well, if you wanted to completely and utterly stop people from using drones then this would do it:

    A change in the rules around flying drones will come into effect next week and will prevent drones being flown in public spaces without consent and a safety plan in place.

    The change to Rule Part 101, which requires drone users to have consent of people and property owners before flying a drone over them, will keep people safe, General Manager of general aviation for the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) Steve Moore said.

    Yeah, like anybody’s going to give permission and this bit:

    Having a conversation with a property owner beforehand is an effective means of risk management because they are likely to have the best knowledge of the risks.

    is complete bollocks. The landowner won’t have a clue as to what risks are there.

    Oh, wait:

    Civil Aviation Rule Part 102 – Unmanned Aircraft Operator Certification will also come into force on August 1 and will enable people who want to operate outside the existing rules for unmanned aircraft to do so if they have in place a plan to manage the safety risks.

    “This new rule part gives operators greater freedom while maintaining the highest standards of aviation safety,” Mr Moore said.

    Those who cannot get consent from a landowner or individuals can still fly a drone if they get an operating certificate from the CAA under Rule Part 102.

    “These changes strike a balance between safety and enabling operations,” he says.

    Really, why didn’t they just say that to fly an unmanned aircraft you needed to get a license? And I suspect that the answer to that is because they didn’t want to force people flying remote controlled aircraft to have to get a license.

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