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Open mike 27/06/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 27th, 2012 - 176 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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

Step right up to the mike…

176 comments on “Open mike 27/06/2012 ”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    This is a really crappy article but it highlights the problem with modern consumer culture and how it’s destroying the world.

    One of the more astonishing figures from the book was that our fiber consumption has leapt from 10 million tons to 82 million tons [annually] in the last 60 years. It’s far outpacing population growth.

    I also get into the waste that’s created. We throw away 68 pounds of textiles per person per year. On top of that, we’re using thrift stores and charity shops as dumps for an incredible volume of clothes that we don’t wear anymore. [The average charity shop is able to sell a mere 20 percent of what comes in.]

    US centric but, sheesh, that’s a lot of waste and shows, once again, the irrationality of our profit driven free-market society.

    • Carol 1.1

      Well, the US leads the way in the throw-away consumer culture. I think there’s something similar in NZ, but maybe not to the same extent.

      I know a few US women who, after visiting NZ, described Kiwis as “dowdy”. i.e. this was a comment on the kind of clothes we wear. But this probably has something to do with the fact that fashionable clothes are more expensive here.

      • happynz 1.1.1

        But this probably has something to do with the fact that fashionable clothes are more expensive here.

        Not just fashionable clothes. Basics such as reasonably priced underpants and socks that last more than a couple of washes are not easy finds in this country.

        Decent shoes are ridiculously expensive in New Zealand compared to Stateside. I have my shoes shipped over, but that’s not so cheap, so thank goodness there are still shoe repair outfits here when the heels wear down and the soles get a bit thin.

        • Uturn

          “Reasonably priced” is somewhat subjective to one’s financial positon, but Farmers still sell the Holeproof brand of socks, around $18 for one or two pairs depending on style and type. Choose wool/nylon 50% : 50% blend for socks (and colour) that will last ten years or more, though pick a size larger, because the first time they see a dryer they’ll shrink.

          For a “more reasonable” price in Auckland, go to the Bendon Outlet stores. Once they were on Barry’s Point road in Auckland, or Fox Center Northcote, and disappeared briefly, but have now re-emerged at Westcity Mall at the end of the NW motorway or at Botany Town Centre out East. Holeproof turn up there and also various other quality brands to chose from at heavily reduced prices.

          Saturday/Sunday Market stalls selling imported socks, 3 or 4pairs for $5 – $10 are a hit-and-miss situation, mostly cotton blends, but also worth a go for the colour/pattern selection. Pakuranga, Avondale, Glen Innes, Manurewa, Otara, Henderson and Mangere markets all have sock stalls regularly. Those markets also have high quality (cleaned, pressed, well presented) second hand clothes, usually something like 3 pieces for $10; Avondale especially has new imported brands you’ll recognise and quality Asian brands for “reasonable cost”. Get an pair of new average shoes there for around $10 – $20.

          For new Shoes, also try Dressmart in Onehunga and get high end/reheelable for roughly half price and while you’re there, check out Shoetown just outside, on the Onehunga Mall. Also outside Dressmart Onehunga is Number One Shoes Outlet. Some cheap shoes in there, but as it’s end of line/out of season, the selection is limited. Also quality can be an issue, so inspect closely if you intend to reheel. Hannahs Outlet at Panmure/Mt Wellington turns up some good finds at good prices.

          In my experience, the best reheel/repair place in Auckland is Gemmels on Symonds Street. They can’t fix some shoes simply because they are designed to be thrown out, but other than that, if you at least look to buy good leather in a shoe, you can continue to reheel for some years at roughly half the price of new.

          For other high quality second hand clothes, try Save Mart, they are Nationwide. In my experience in Auckland, the best clothes selection is at Onehunga or New Lynn, but outlets are also at Northcote and Browns Road. Northcote has the biggest selection of shoes. Tonnes of womens stuff at all branches, good range of mens from $5.99 to $25 for designer labels. Also “retro and ethnic” at New Lynn.

          Finding belts that last more than a month can be difficult. Best bet in Dressmart is Hallensteins or there is a belt stall near the donut stall. There you’ll pay $25 for durable leather in almost any style or colour. Also, Safety Protector shops carry the Taurus range of belts at around $25 – $30 a piece. Classic plain black or brown, single silver buckle – 100% leather.

          Finding “reasonably priced” mens trousers can be difficult. Kmart often has many of Hallensteins range under a different label for up to half the price. On can pay $12 (on special) up to $25, where you might pay up to $75 elsewhere. The Warehouse occasionally has durable cheap underwear range, but again, it pays to estimate up to 2 sizes higher, because of shrinkage. Dye colours other than grey or black will run. Thermals are also there or at Postie Plus for around $10 a piece. Postie plus often has hidden gems ina ll things.

          It all depends on personal taste. K-Road often turns up some good shoes and clothes, but it depends on your idea of “reasonable price”. As Carol’s friends pointed out above, in a country that openly condones jeans as formal wear, it’s easy to look well dressed, starting from scratch, for $50 – $100 total. Some people won’t be able to get those sorts of funds together all in one go, but shit, there’s only so much I can do. Not much is free these days and others will know better angles than me.

          As the final trick for young players: Re-Dye your clothes. A popular thing to do, overseas, if you’ve ever been a backpacker. Much of what we buy never wears out, but colour fades. Go to Geoffs Emporium on Dominion road and get some washing machine dye. For $14 you can renew or change the colour of $200 pants or an armful of shirts, socks, T-shirts etc. Read the instructions on the dye! Just bear in mind the stitching on clothes is often polyester, even if the item is cotton, and will not take the dye. So black, grey, dark blue, green and brown all work well. But you’ll never get a light blue shirt to be black – it’ll have white/blue stitching. These dyes work well in the washing machine with no mess or damage to further washes, but if you’re an environmentalist, you might want to think about weighing up the use of dying chemicals against the waste of throwing out structurally sound clothes.

          • Carol

            excellent! Thanks, Uturn. I’ve copied and saved your tips for future reference. While your tips are slanted towards males, I shop at some of the places you mention, and my dress styles tends towards “casual”, unisex-ish (trousers/jeans not dresses).

            And I’ve had problems like belts and shoes not lasting. This is also true of a lot of women’s clothes as they are built for looks not durability. I did used to buy more men’s jeans & shirts in the past for this reason. But I’m quite small, and people seem to have got bigger – even most small men’s clothes are too big for me now.

          • ianmac

            Just bought ten pairs of white anklet sports socks for $11.50 at the Warehouse. $1.15 a pair or 57.5 cents each sock.

            • happynz

              How long do you reckon they will last? I haven’t had much luck with bargain socks from the big red shed.

          • happynz

            Thanks for the shopping tips, uturn.

          • just saying

            What a useful thread.

            I’d like to emphasise the value of the op-shop, and belts are a good example. The last belt I bought for five dollars is wide, thick leather, and will defintely outlive me.
            I tend to haunt the jumper racks for thin merino garments which make an excellent thermal underlayer for winter. I’ve got plently myself, but friends are always grateful.

            Just a note about dyeing. I often dye things, most recently some op-shop cushions. But nowadays I don’t dye anything that will need regular washing. I’m yet to find a genuinely colourfast dye, but if anyone else has I’d love to hear about it.

          • prism

            You should be able to get clothing dye in supermarkets. Small tins. Look in the washing section.

            Think of op shops that support social needs in the community when buying clothes.. Buying things there is an excellent way to give a donation that gives back to you. There’s sure to be one not far away
            or at a local church or centre once a week. Finding one that’s open when you’re around is the trick.

            • just saying

              You should be able to get clothing dye in supermarkets. Small tins. Look in the washing section.

              Not round my way.
              From chemist shops generally, but I’ve never found one that is colour fast.

          • mike e

            I bought some Katmandu socks @ 15 dollars a pair I have worn them less than five times they are buggered.These socks are for the serious tramper.
            I will never buy katmandu ever again.
            Atleast you know when you buy whare house stuff its not going to last that long but I have had a better run out of their socks,

          • Vicky32

            It all depends on personal taste. K-Road often turns up some good shoes and clothes, but it depends on your idea of “reasonable price”

            I found a perfect skirt in a charity shop on K Rd, I guess it depends on taste… I love ‘hippie’ type long skirts, lucky they’re not generally popular – and best of all – pockets!
            I also found a perfect ‘office’ type skirt in KMart for $20.00…

    • ad 1.2

      Draco, interested in your thoughts on this new article from Gordon Campbell. Essentially pessimistic on peak oil and cleantech given new dirty oil extraction capacity into the medium term.


    • Vicky32 1.3

      On top of that, we’re using thrift stores and charity shops as dumps for an incredible volume of clothes that we don’t wear anymore.

      I wear clothes and use towels etc until they’re threadbare. I have taken some of my son’s out-grown clothes to charity shops, otherwise, I am a hoarder by nature. So, for once, not guilty! 🙂

  2. What will happen now the asset bill has passed…

    …National will continue flogging off part of the power companies.
    …Labour/Greens will continue to flog a dead horse petition?

    There’s risks for all three of the larger parties. The success of the Mighty River float is crucial for National – and it’s also important for the country.

    And Labour/Greens risk continuing to put a lot of resource into what could be an extended and futile post-legislation fizzle. There may be plenty of fight amongst political activists, but the wider voting population are much more likely to contune living their lives outside the bubble.

    • tc 2.1

      Your the one living in a bubble Petey full of self righteous justification and spin handed down by your masters warmed by the glow of victory, it’s really quite sad to observe.

      You and Dunne will be regarded, just like NACT as people who sold our assets to enrich mates and backers to the disadvantage of today and future generations, you know no shame because you are a sell out who spends him time in the blogosphere not in the real world.

      The real world where UF and NACT just made their backers the pay back the hollowmen demanded, serving the people Petey you and us know that’s a blatant lie.

      • marty mars 2.1.1

        + 1 – exactly right tc – they have sold our assets as part of the payback. They will sell everything if they can because they are hollow inside and out. Well fuck them I say, it is not over yet!

    • It is absolutely vital for the country that it does not go ahead.  I really hope the Maori Council succeed in its attempt to inject the sale.

      Have you noticed Petey that Tainui are not part of the litigation?  Do you understand why? 

      • tc 2.2.1

        And yet the media ignore the desperate attempt by NACT/UF to effectively bribe the iwi with shares, you know those shares that were meant to fix schools, pay debt, build roads and be the magic wand that cures all.

        for Petey to understand that mickey would be to admit he understands the gorilla in the room, can’t let reality get in the way of more shonkey spin can we.

    • North 2.3

      Oh thank you thank you thank you facile one Pete George. Everything you pompously tell us we never have a clue about. Until you tell us. Because you stood for parliament. And you’re an oracle near unequalled. Except for the perennial cabinet toady you call your leader.

      Your contibutions to “debate” on this blog are limited to this – statement of either the patently obvious (you know…..”one party government is not good for democracy”), or, utterly predictable right wing wish-list, mouthed out as fact.

      And on top of it you do it with terribly self-consciousness solemnity to conceal your narcissism.

      You stood for parliament……….so bloody what ? You are sadly the most boring person in the universe, and I suspect, essentially thick.

    • mikesh 2.4

      Well, I hope Dunne’s ministerial post makes him happy. After all, that’s his reward for selling the country down the river.

  3. Carol 3

    How can someone (or people) in a top position in ACC have so little sensitivity to, or understanding of the situation of, rape and incest survivors? These ACC top dogs think so little of the survivors and their situation that they think $250 will buy their silence?

    And how much influence did the minister have over this?


    ACC has sent letters of apology to rape and incest victims whose privacy was breached – offering them $250 if they agree to stay silent
    “When I got the letter and offer I just thought it was pathetic,” one sensitive claims client said yesterday. “I just wanted to vomit. It’s another slap in the face after all the things they’ve done.”
    ACC said it was offering the money because the breach involved details of the clients being in the sensitive claims unit and that may have caused distress.

    It finished by saying ACC “has your best interests at heart” and was committed to moving forward positively “following this regrettable incident”.

    But the letters have drawn fire from several ACC clients in internet discussions and from the woman who provided a copy of her letter to The Dominion Post.

    Several have said they will not sign a secrecy agreement with ACC.

    • Jackal 3.1

      If that’s the kind of compensation the government is offering, it’s no wonder Paula Bennett is saying abused people should claim:

      Social Development Minister Paula Bennett is encouraging people who were abused as a result of the state being involved in their care, including placement with wider family or in foster homes, to apply for compensation.

      Her comments followed the story of “Joanne”, who told Marae Investigates she was placed in the care of her uncle, a convicted rapist, after a family group conference in 2001 when she was 16.

      She has alleged she was raped and contracted HIV.

      Child, Youth and Family has now apologised to her and changed the vetting requirements in such cases.


      The maximum that has been paid out to an individual is $80,000. Since November 2008, a total of $3.55 million has been paid out and 272 claims completed. Previously, 54 claims were completed and payouts totalled $375,500.

      The Ministry of Social Development has said there is no legal obligation to pay compensation, but a moral obligation sometimes arose where its actions were deficient to a degree that resulted in loss or harm.

      So a state department can be grossly negligent and there is no legal obligation to pay compensation… how mental is that?

  4. mickysavage, what happened to David Cunliffe’s speech?

    I thought that was a big, visionary speech for the future. It didn’t get a post-speech post here. Nothing in the media. Nothing on Red Alert. Nothing but a one of many ‘News’ listing in the Labour website.

    I thought there should have been a major promotion of it. Is that yet to happen? Or is it not very important to Labour?

    Seems very odd. What happened to David Cunliffe’s speech?

  5. Carol 5

    Government promises 100,000 jobs? But for whom?


    According to ministerial briefing papers obtained by RadioLIVE there is a catch to the Government’s promise of more jobs.

    The Labour Department predicts 100,000 new jobs in the coming years, but the documents reveal they will largely benefit professional men, leaving low-skilled workers and women out in the cold.
    “He is intentionally dumbing down the community by locking them out of higher education even though he knows that there simply will not be the jobs created for those people as part of his overall economic plan,” says Ms Turei.

    The Department of Labour briefing paper says more needs to be done to ‘up-skill disadvantaged’ groups in society.

    As Bomber tweeted:

    If Joyce was shown papers claiming the 100 000 jobs would only go to men, does that mean ‘jobs for the boys’ has become actual policy now?

    • Bored 6.1

      Violence begets violence. Poor dog suffered, the environment and residents where the drilling is planned could suffer. Then there will be more suffering, all for a hole in the ground.

      • chris73 6.1.1

        Well good to see thats how people like you roll

        • Bored

          People like me dont take shit from trolls. And we dont see property rights as absolute when they affect the rest of us. And people like me question why NOT who started the nonsense, we dont however condone all actions.

          On the contrary trolls like you do the opposite.

          • chris73

            I’d like to point out that calling someone a troll because you don’t like what they post doesn’t in fact make them a troll

    • joe90 6.2

      Well good to see thats how people like you roll

      Well we know how people like you roll chris73 with more than 700 environmentalists, that’s one a week, killed over the past decade.

      Among those mourned by the Council of Canadians and Blue Planet Project are:

      Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez in Mexico
      Mariano Abarca Roblero in Mexico
      Beatriz Carino Trujillo in Mexico

      Father Jose Reinel Restrepo Idairraga in Colombia
      Kimy Pernia Domico in Colombia

      Dora Alicia Sorto Recinos in El Salvador
      Marcelo Rivera Moreno in El Salvador
      Ramiro Rivera Gomez in El Salvador
      Juan Francisco Duran Ayala in El Salvador


      Across the world, our research found 711 individuals
      reported killed in the past decade – an average of
      more than one killing per week. Of these, 106 people
      were killed in 2011 – nearly twice the death toll in
      2009. It includes those killed in targeted attacks and
      violent clashes as a result of protests, investigating
      or taking grievances against mining operations,
      logging operations, intensive agriculture including
      ranching, tree plantations, hydropower dams, urban
      development and poaching

      • chris73 6.2.1

        Wow, I’ve been a busy boy haven’t I. That explains why I’ve felt a bit tired lately.

  6. vto 7

    Is it true that Peter Dunne has voted more New Zealand assets into foreign hands than any other single person in this country?

    • Pascal's bookie 7.1

      Probably. I can’t think how anyone would beat him.

      It will probably be what he’s most remembered for. When people remember to remember him at all.

    • chris73 7.2

      Well he was elected under Labour from 84 – 94 so he may very well be

    • Bored 7.3

      No not just Peter Dunne, but every aspirational idiot, every fat cat 1%er, every “I am better than you” person who voted for this scabby bunch of theives. Dunne is just another bland faceless “me firster”, dont give him any credit. Others enabled his position.

      So when you know your fellow citizen voted NACT tell the bastards what they have done, why your power bill is going up and you cant feed the children. Tell them they are to blame for voting the bastards in.

      PS When somebody screams poverty ask them did they vote? If not why not? They are to blame as well.
      PPS When some lefty MP tells you that they cant make statements like “nationalise” etc, tell them that we dont vote them in to be toothless (and useless).

  7. Bored 8

    This morning I reflected that the world has not changed significantly since last night when another larcenous act was perpetuated against the citizenry of NZ. The theft is slow and corrosive, at stake is our security, our childrens future, our freedom (such as we have left). We are I note in a class war.

    In reality we have been constantly in a class war and always will be. The reason is because we humans constantly want what we dont have, and somebody else does. The tempo of our wars increase as the gap between those who have and those who dont have widens. Last nights legislation merely signals an escalation: the violence level was raised because one side had a narrow firepower advantage. The response will be that the other side will try to close the firepower gap. But that is not enough.

    What the Left currently does not have is generals with the knowledge that they really are at war facing battle hardened focused foes from the Right. The Lefts generals need to throw off the amateur gentlemanly manner and harden up. For too many years the Left has allowed their own generals to come from the Right, bringing Right wing tactics to bear. It has not worked.

    Those “Left” generals who think the key to victory is holding the centre need to notice the blitz has gone around this point and attacked from the flanks. Plodding up the middle wont work, victory is for the swift, and at the moment its the Right. The Left needs to recognise the gravity and extremity of the fight, and make a stand. To date the stand has been feeble, the goal fuzzy. Time to lay out the strategy and commit to total victory. They are taking all we have, we are going to take everything they have. Unconditional victory.

    So come on Labour, get with the program!

  8. freedom 9

    reposting in Open mike because i would genuinely like an answer

    Q: Can the Governor General do anything?

    I admittedly am a bit fuzzy on where those largely ceremonial powers start/stop. Which is why i ask questions of others who know these matters more accurately than I. ( something many people would do well to try) Ceremonial position aside, does he not have some power here? Perhaps if he thought of all his brothers in arms who fought and died for New Zealand and what they died protecting, then he could be a brave soldier and refuse to allow the act to be accepted by the Crown?

    Yes it messes in our self-determination but we are not a Republic yet. If it is a tool in the box, let’s bloody well use it and ask the GG to protect Aotearoa.

    • Chris 9.1

      You really want the Governor General to effectively become a veto for anything they don’t like?

      Get ready for every future appointment to be former ministers who veto everything their former party doesn’t like.

      • freedom 9.1.1

        “Get ready for every future appointment to be former ministers who veto everything their former party doesn’t like.”
        that is a short cut to thinking and i personally believe we have a fairly robust and attentive parliament where this would not become the norm.

        I sincerely believe the GG discussion is worthy of debate if it allows a return to the house of this Bill, perhaps forcing National to actually consider the thousand plus submissions opposing the bill not just agree with the handful that supported it.

        A true democracy should always be mindful of how its future is crafted but not be afraid of using the tools at its disposal to affect change upon that future. Even if some tools are sharper than others, and the potential of injury is severe, the skill of the craftsman is the issue and this highlights the question, ‘can the GG do anything?’ i have many tools i use sparingly because they have limited application but not using them can be the difference between doing a job properly and hashing out a piece of inferior work.

        or has NZ fatally become a speak much say nothing do even less society

      • Draco T Bastard 9.1.2

        You really want the Governor General to effectively become a veto for anything they don’t like?

        No, what I would like him to do is refuse assent to the law as it’s obviously against the will of the people. In other words, an actual considered position that has moral authority.

        • ropata

          Representative Democracy: the National party has heard of it.
          But they *actually* represent an economic elite from a galaxy far far away

        • Chris

          And once they go down that path how do you stop it going further?

          • Draco T Bastard

            Did you see the bit about the “will of the people” and “considered position”?

            In other words, it has to be justified.

            • Chris

              Why does it have to be justified? Because at the moment it’s only because you are saying it is. Just seems the start of a very slippery slope to me.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Why does it have to be justified?

                Because otherwise it’s arbitrary. In fact, that’s the point of all law – it has to be justified. So that would be another reason for the GG to stop the law as all of the reasons that NACT+UF have put forward have been proven to be bollocks.

                Because at the moment it’s only because you are saying it is.

                Nope, all polling shows that asset sales is against the will of the people. The referendum will most likely prove that.

                Just seems the start of a very slippery slope to me.

                And out comes the non-argument of the slippery slope.

                • “No, what I would like him to do is refuse assent to the law as it’s obviously against the will of the people. In other words, an actual considered position that has moral authority.”

                  So the guy that complains NZ is a dictatorship now wants to vest veto power into a figure who is not beholden to the public and cannot be removed from office by public vote?

                  I call bullshit

        • Bob

          Good point Draco, like the ‘Anti-smacking bill’ or buying back Kiwi Rail, or selling Spring Creek Mine to an American conglomerate, or selling Wellington Power to a Hong Kong conglomerate……..or are they only allowed to step in when a ‘Right-wing’ party does something that is ‘obviously against the will of the people’?

    • Draco T Bastard 9.2

      The GG could refuse to sign the law into being but I doubt if he would.

      • freedom 9.2.1

        Thanks draco, I have the general info, I was hoping there might be someone out there with a working knowledge as to how it applies and how best to move on it. It is a parliamentary thing that Jo Citizen has no part in as far as i understand it.

        I have to admit I am a little shocked at the lack of interest in the subject.
        It seems like no-one can be bothered actually stopping the sale
        just happy to be seen looking like they are trying to.

        Sent off some emails, which will no doubt end up in spam boxes.
        Will send off a few letters but i understood notice to the GG had to happen within a short (unknown to me) time frame of the vote on the relevant Bill.

      • Again:

        So the guy that complains NZ is a dictatorship now wants to vest veto power into a figure who is not beholden to the public and cannot be removed from office by public vote?

        I call bullshit

        • freedom

          People are looking at all available means to restrict the progression of the Asset Sales. Our GG has certain powers, every now and then something happens where perhaps those powers should be applied, but applied with the due concern, consideration and respect that the situation calls for. This is one of those times.

          I am not a fan of having a soldier as our GG but he is and we must work with the strengths a soldier has. A sense of duty and a wish to defend one’s country being paramount in their arsenal. I am trusting that our GG is someone who will consider fairly if the Government is defending New Zealand with this bill. If the intervention from the Queen’s Representative became a more common occurrence then that would be a question for that situation. Like all laws, it is the people that use them or abuse them which dictate their legitimacy.

          Those I have spoken with on this agree that asking the GG to return the MOM Bill to the House for further debate is a valid request in this divisive situation. A request that is only asking that the Submissions on this bill be properly considered as they suffered a deliberately truncated process and the support was outweighed by those against by a factor of 99-1. This is nothing but asking for the NZ Parliament to properly follow its own procedure. Something this Government has chosen not to do on a regular basis.

          TC, you also ignore the fact no-one is calling for new powers. You simply choose not to acknowledge what is there on the books already. NZ is being abused again, but by all means lay back and take it, that is your right.

  9. yeshe 10

    bloody marvelous … now we have a Wheeler and a dealer to plunder NZ into the poverty wilderness. HELP !!!! Anyone else troubled by this ???


    ‘Reserve Bank Governor-in-waiting Graeme Wheeler was once touted as a potential World Bank president and gained fame for telling his boss, Paul Wolfowitz, to resign during what was seen as a civil war at the World Bank.

    Wheeler’s appointment to take over at the central bank when Alan Bollard steps down on September 25 was welcomed yesterday, even though many had expected deputy governor Grant Spencer to win the top post.

    Spencer may be disappointed and it is not clear if he will stay at the central bank, given Wheeler may serve at least one, possibly two, five-year terms. Wheeler has a strong international reputation, especially in world financial markets.

    He takes over what is arguably one of the most important roles in the economy as the sole final decisionmaker on monetary policy: what to do with official interest rates and when.

    Wheeler resigned as managing director of the World Bank in 2010, after 12 years at what is effectively the world’s most important aid agency.

    The World Bank borrows from institutions on international markets, including New Zealand, and lends to developing countries, especially for big projects. ‘ ( more on the webpage )

  10. bad12 11

    In yesterdays Herald Slippery the Prime Minister indicated that He will have to seek legal advice after calls from groups of Doctors and Nurses to ban duty free cigarettes,

    Legal advice???, yeah Slippery sez that it’s getting to the point where SOMEONE is going to take to His Government over such things as rack raising of taxes on tobacco products,and, proposals to ban things like duty free cigs,

    From here it looks just as likely that Slippery has woken up to the fact that there are 600,000 users of tobacco products in New Zealand and should discrimination in taxation force them into a ‘Grey Power’ type political advocacy organization His Government and any other proposing discriminatory taxation of tobacco addicts will get a caning,


    Slippery is aware of the fact that many of the 2 million who pass through the International Arrivals area of our airports and therefore are allowed the small joy of some duty free cigs are very likely to be the well heeled National voters returning from faraway exotic places where they have been busily spending their tax cuts, (apparently 75% of tax cuts for the rich are spent in ‘other’ economy’s),

    But what of tobacco usage??? having taken an interest i have begun the dig for FACTS and my initial finds are both startling, (perhaps an indication of why Slippery fears being sued) and from the stuff i have read on the web it sure as hell proves that if you tell the masses a big one often enough sooner or later they will believe you,

    Specially if your a Doctor, Nurse, or oft reported entity with imposing letters like ASH,

    Fact (1), 10% of those who smoke will get lung cancer,

    Fact (2), 15% of those who get lung cancer will have no link to actual or passive smoking,

    Fact (3), 50% of those who get lung cancer are those who gave up smoking,

    fact (4), those with a specific gene anomaly are 30% more likely to get lung cancer,

    fact (5), those with a double gene anomaly are 70% more likely to get lung cancer,

    fact (6), in the UK 8% of lung cancers are directly caused by the work a person does,

    fact (7) lung cancer has become more prevalent as people live longer, the average age of those who get lung cancer is 65, in the 1930s the average life expectancy was 57 so not many lived long enough to develop a lung cancer,

    Rather than put up all the links to these little gems of info the Google is, Why don’t all smokers get cancer…

    • Carol 11.1

      A fellow student on a course I did in the UK, used to use a similar argument in favour of heroin – ie most users can use them for a major part of their adult lives without any significant ill affects.

      • bad12 11.1.1

        Aha, i grew up on the streets of Wellington during the ‘Heroin years’ and know many people working in professions who used the drug,

        The operative word of course is ‘use’ as opposed to abused where the more overt ‘junky’ type user simply used the drug to get out of it all the time if possible,

        From the statistics it would appear that those who actually start smoking and stop at some time during their lives are the most at risk of developing lung cancer,

        To strangely twist that stat a little would have our Government rack raising the taxes on tobacco products with the stated aim of preventing people from developing lung cancer in effect actually raising the chances that they will by 40 odd percent…

    • mike e 11.2

      sad 12 because their to busy getting mouth throat larynx and and raft of other cancers,
      not to mention heart diseases and strokes.

      • bad12 11.2.1

        Yawn, your wee snivel of abuse as an indication of your intelligence and ability to debate would leave you sadly lacking in the former and at village idiot level in the latter,

        Smoking gives you lung cancer???, not even, 90% of those who use tobacco products will not get lung cancer,

        Of course if 90% of those who you are trying to discriminate against don’t get the lung disease you claim the product causes then you have to up the ante and make claims about such things as heart disease and strokes,

        After the millions and millions of dollars spent on advertising campaigns to attempt to fill the users of the product with fear i was inclined to the opinion that smoking the product hugely increased my chances of developing lung cancer,

        Having an inquiring mind has lead me to have a good read of what is on the web about such and my initial response is one of mirth at the obvious CON of the lung cancer statistics and the laughter would be ongoing except for the fact that i use the stuff and don’t like to be discriminated against by any Government via the taxation system on spurious grounds,

        Heart Disease and Strokes and their supposed links to the use of tobacco products need a good looking at coz if ‘they’ will bulls**t us all over lung cancer ‘they’ will quite happily do so over heart disease and strokes…

        • Draco T Bastard


          One in two smokers will die from smoking

          ‘Tobacco is the only consumer product that will kill half its users when used as intended.’

          One in two long-term smokers, who do not quit smoking, will die early from a smoking-related illness. Smokers are twice as likely as non-smokers to die when they are in middle age.

          It’s not just lung cancer that makes smoking bad for you.

          • McFlock

            Indeed, but it is an interesting point about perception vs reality. The major risk from smoking is heart disease, but the meme and hollywood cliche is lung cancer.
            Additionally, tobacco has a dose-response like any other exposure, down to undetectable risk as somewhere like 3 cigarettes a day ISTR. So the numbers of smokers might be relatively static, but the mortality rate will decrease as the effects of excise increases etc take effect (lower consumption per smoker). 
            And of course if you want to talk “kills if used as intended”, try camembert, soft drinks or fish & chips, other great causes of diabetes and heart disease. So smokefree are probably fibbing a bit there. But then I’ve long figured that the ash-zealots were just as economical with the truth as the tobacco industry ever were.

          • bad12

            Aha, as i have become ‘interested’ in the claims made by the tobacco kills lobby a good look into the other kills by tobacco is warranted,

            Go on, bet you like i really believed the tobacco use causes lung cancer one right???, but, the truth of that little piece of mis-information is that 90% of tobacco users will not get lung cancer,

            So there is hardly a proven link between tobacco use and lung cancer, the other stuff, throat cancer, stokes, heart disease i plan to check out and add to the ‘discussion’ later,

            Given that 3 different studies have pointed to a specific abnormality in a persons Genes as the prime indicator of developing cancer it then becomes clearer why only 10% of tobacco users develop lung cancer, and, why certain populations such as Maori in this country’s case are more prone to develop the disease, ie, the Maori population are more closely inter-related than the European population,

            Obviously i will be looking for whether the same altered gene is a feature inherent in those who develop the other ‘smokers diseases’ as well as the veracity of the highly unlikely claim that smoking kills half of those who use the product, an extremely glib and emotive claim where most of those supposedly killed by the product are in fact at the end of their life anyway….

            • TheContrarian

              “So there is hardly a proven link between tobacco use and lung cancer, the other stuff, throat cancer, stokes, heart disease i plan to check out and add to the ‘discussion’ later”

              Even though big tobacco admitted smoking was positively correlated with incidences disease tried to cover it up and why the overwhelming scientific consensus is that tobacco is positively correlated with lung cancer, throat cancer, heart disease and emphysema?

              You are taking denial to strange new heights.

              Got any links?

            • higherstandard

              It has been known for almost 50 years that tobacco use can be linked to cancers of the lung and head and neck.

              Eighty-five percent of the cases of head and neck cancer found each year are associated with tobacco use. Long-term smoking that begins before age 30 also increases the risk for developing colorectal cancer.

              Smoking contributes to cancer development by causing mutations in genes, impairing lung function, and decreasing the effectiveness of the immune system.

              The longest follow up of the ill effects of smoking in relation to coronary disease was probably the framingham cohort which we now base many of the risk algorithms on in relation to assessing a persons risk of suffering an adverse event.


              Feel free to see what your statistical risk is with and without smoking.


              • bad12

                ”Smoking contributes to cancer development by causing mutations in genes”,

                Does it really???.

                http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm. ?

                Paul Brennan, who led the IARC study, says he initially believed that the risk of getting lung cancer was elevated by the genetic predisposition to become addicted,

                ”The Genes made you more likely to smoke, made you more likely to smoke more, made you less likely to give up, and therefore, more likely to develop lung cancer”,

                But His research showed, that in fact, the gene appeared to independently increase a persons risk of developing the disease–with no link to addictions,

                When Steffansson’s team applied the stats to the incidence of lung cancer, it found that individuals with 2 copies of the altered gene had a whopping 70% greater chance of developing lung cancer, those with 1 copy had a 30% higher risk,

                Smoking alters genes which then go on to cause cancer OR as the above from 3 different 2008 studies say, a copy of an altered gene gives people a 30% higher chance or 2 copies of the altered gene increases the chances of cancer whether or not the person uses tobacco products…

          • Bob

            My Grandfather had Bowel Cancer, was given 1 month to live, 18 months later, when he was on his last legs, he developed Pneumonia and passed away. This was counted as a smoking related death!
            My Aunty developed motor neuron disease, it quickly crippled her to the point where she could no longer speak, she also developed Pneumonia and passed away. This was also classed as a smoking related death!

            Before you spout bulls**t statistics, please realise how flawed the collation of data relating to deaths is in the overall picture. This is a topic I get very emotive over as I watched these diseases that are completely unrelated to smoking, decemate my close family members lives. Due to the fact that it was the Pneumonia that ‘finished them off’ we cannot do anything to stop them being added to these statistics which would now say 100% of my close relatives that have passed away did so due to smoking.

            • Vicky32

              which would now say 100% of my close relatives that have passed away did so due to smoking.

              Exactly! Someone working at Stats told me some years ago, that all deaths from respiratory causes are coded as smoking related… That makes me wonder if the death of my baby brother at 6 weeks from pneumonia, was coded that way? (Which would of course be absurd. Given it was 1957, probably not, but you never know..)

              • higherstandard

                ‘…….Someone working at Stats told me some years ago, that all deaths from respiratory causes are coded as smoking related…’

                They, or you, must have been mistaken as I can categorically tell you that this does not happen.

            • bad12

              Can I ask how old were your Grandfather and Aunt when they died???, and, did either of them smoke???,

              What i have gathered so far from my internet reads is that what smokers are being tagged with is ‘end of life diseases’, and, i get the feeling that especially in the case of of heart related deaths it is in fact the major killer across the whole of the aged population and people are dying of these heart related diseases at around the same age, 65 onwards, whether or not they smoke,

              So it is spurious of the health statistics to show that a 65+ who smoked died of a smoking related disease of the heart when 80% of the 65+ who die of a disease of the heart in the same year who did not smoke are simply heart attack or heart disease statistics,

              One has to ask if everyone intends living forever, i pick my own lifespan to be in the realm of 65 t0 80 years and if i do reach that 80 figure i will have been smoking 20+ a day for 67 years,

              It is in fact between the years 65 to 80 years when 90% of us die whether we use tobacco products or not and as we age and weaken then it is obvious that we will all be at higher risk of catching and surrendering to all diseases even cancers whether or not we use tobacco products or not…

              • McFlock

                b12, That’s not how it works. It’s a multi-discipinary approach.
                What happens is the population scientists look at the rates of different conditions in populations who smoke vs non-smokers. They notice that smokers tend to die earlier than non-smokers. Further researchers note that ony half of smokers die earlier than non-smokers, but the average life-shortening is by 20-odd years.
                Meanwhile scientists examine the contents of smoke, and note a number of chemicals that are associated with higher incidences of different conditions when in other exposure scenarios, e.g. hydrocarbons.
                Other scientists examine the biological mechanisms of various conditions, and how they form and affect the body.
                Then people get all the stuff together, note that we have observed relationship, physiological plausibility, and decent biochemistry to back it up. Smoking is indeed bad, m’kay?
                But then we have people looking for a specific cause for their illness or relative’s death (mum had a heart attack, it must of been her smoking. Or her husband’s. Or that smoker she passed in the street). But you can’t really attribute an individual death to smoking (unless a cigarette down the back of a couch called a fatal fire :)).
                We also have policy advocates muddying the waters (in both directions), for example I saw news reports of a study a few years back claiming something like 288 NZers a year died from passive smoking. Turned out the NZ “study” extrapolated from a european study, and the numbers were so small the confidence interval was five miles wide. I could see those guys doing the old “all xxx is caused by smoking” when attributing smoking-related harm, just like big tobacco did the opposite. 

                • rosy

                  “unless a cigarette down the back of a couch called a fatal fire”

                  Yep. My family has experienced that – one dead and the survivor being in hospital for 2 years, over 30 skin grafts and 50 operations, ACC for 30 years, deformed, scarred, deaf from the ensuing stroke and meds and disabled for life. Bugger all the health-related stuff (which, btw I agree with) smoking is dangerous. Smoking kills and disables. Sorry folks, it’s personal.

                • bad12

                  Aha, i see your point,honest!!! and then after all of this ‘the thin puff leads to the short huff’, along comes genetic science and POINTS OUT that X specific gene, (from memory 15), when it has developed x specific ANOMALY will mean that the person so afflicted will be 30% more likely to develop cancer WHETHER OR NOT that person has ever used tobacco products or been exposed to them in any way,

                  Should that specific identified gene have x as xx as the anomaly then the person so afflicted will be 70–80% more likely to develop cancer and again the abnormality in the gene makes no discrimination about whether a person has ever been exposed to tobacco products,

                  So, it becomes easier to see when we add in the science of genetics why 50% of the pesky little smokers aint dying off at the same rate as the other 50% and why the lung cancer one is such a huge flop in terms of quantifying the harm of tobacco usage, (hell even an unbeliever like me entertained the idea for a while that i was merrily puffing my way to a bad case of black lungs),

                  The heart disease one tho from the little i have ascertained is pretty spurious, i will happily admit that the use of tobacco products could be one of many factors. BUT, the cause??? no way,

                  In the US 83% of all deaths are from ‘heart disease’, 17. something % of Americans use tobacco products,

                  Almost from the day we are all born we start laying down in our various arteries,veins,and, heart valves the plaque that will eventually cause our tickers to malfunction in various ways and eventually kill us,

                  Now smoking may help that process along, but cause it, nah!!!living does that…

                  • McFlock

                    The leading cause, probably. Not the only cause.
                    My personal belief is that tobacco, particularly unadulterated tobacco, is on the line between preventing actions that cause harm vs preventing less healthy personal lifestyle choices.
                    Frankly, if in 20 years we are all lentil munching vegetarian tofu suckers with forced exercise routines and no alcohol or tobacco – I’d probably want to shoot myself. Not much exaggeration if any, either – I like the little joys in life, even if they might be bad for me.

                    • bad12

                      Aha, your right there, i had a quick read of part of a study which says exactly that as far as tobacco usage being as much a preventative action as a causative,

                      I was speed reading at the time,(nah i hadn’t just piped a point),and now can’t remember the page i was reading that from,

                      I can see the point tho, along with all the other bits and pieces tobacco has quite a good supply of one of the poisons, arsenic i think, so it’s easy to envisage the users immune system being at heightened levels of activity after a smoke of tobacco,

                      It, tobacco makes a great pesticide, a few leaves soaked in 3 litres of water for a few weeks and then sprayed upon plants prone to be eaten by the bugs works a treat…

              • Bob

                My Grandfather was 67, and my Aunty was 42. Both of them were smokers up until diagnosed, which is why (as far as I know, although Vicky32 may be on to something) they were classed as passing away from smoking related illness.

        • Vicky32

          Heart Disease and Strokes and their supposed links to the use of tobacco products need a good looking at coz if ‘they’ will bulls**t us all over lung cancer ‘they’ will quite happily do so over heart disease and strokes…

          That interests me greatly, as I was misdiagnosed with a TIA in January, simply because I am a smoker. Having been told to quit, as smoking causes strokes, I asked Dr Google what the mechanism is, only to learn that there are two contradictory mechanisms, which can’t possibly both be true! That caused me to wonder if either of them is true!
          My GP actually apologised for the misdiagnosis, and as I was on clopidogrel for only 3 months, no actual harm was done…

          • higherstandard

            The risk of TIA is raised in smokers as is the risk of numerous cancers.

            A overview for the general public is attached below.


          • bad12

            Heres a bit of how smoking might kill you,


            ”But there was a flipside. 40% of those who had CT screenings had an abnormal result that lead to additional testing, and 16 premature deaths occurred because of interventions prompted by the screening, such as needle biopsies of the lung, 6 of those people didn’t have lung cancer”,

            Naughty smokers wouldnt have got dead by medical misadventure if they had just quit the fags right,

            Well nah, 50% of those who get lung cancer HAD quit,(apparently well befor the diagnosis)…

          • Vicky32

            Replying to my own post from yesterday – I just checked TIA symptoms on a website (as I’d been following Bad12’s google ideas) and discovered that of all the symptoms of a TIA I had – er, none of them! What on earth were the GP and the neurologist thinking? Were they so blinded by the smoking thing on my record? (I had a chance to check my record, and discovered that half of it’s wrong, I recommend everyone asks their GP for the chance to check.) 
            For one thing – halve the number of cigarettes you say you smoke. This is because health professionals automatically double what you say. 😀

        • mike e

          4,000 people dying each year can’t be wrong! addicts can come up with any and many excuses

          • bad12

            Yeah us tobacco junky’s are terrible aint we, a full on 90% of us WON’T get the big bad bogie, lung cancer,

            So damn, we are all doomed to die from every other ailment that just happens to be the prime causes of death for ALL those who don’t partake of the tobacco products,

            It takes so damn long tho right, hell it takes so f**king long for the stuff to kill us all tho, take little old me for instance, (man sailing on his ego trip), i will have by the time i get to 65 been smoking tobacco products for 53 years,

            Why did i choose to mention the age of 65 you might ask, and, i would have to reply because that is the average age where Lung Cancer is detected in Humans,and, the American Medical Association says that 83% of those who will die of Heart Disease will be 65 years of age or older,

            Remember that Heart disease thingy another of the ‘supposed’ diseases of smoking, could it just be, and, it looks increasingly more so the more i read, that as a matter of convenience and because it suits them and their masters to do so, if a person dies of ‘heart disease’, (and one hell of a lot of us do), and they also happen to smoke tobacco or had done so previously then the ‘convenience’ is to simply blame the consumption of tobacco products…

          • Vicky32

            4,000 people dying each year can’t be wrong! addicts can come up with any and many excuses

            So it would seem, can wowsers! 😀
            The number is actually 400 not 4000, but aside from that, 400 is coincidentally the number of people adversely affected by vehicle exhaust!
            If you don’t believe me, then tell the Herald, that’s where I got those statistics…

            • TheContrarian

               400? Where did you get that figure?  

              “Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in New Zealand, accounting for around 4300 to 4600 deaths per year”

              But hey, by all means take your health advice from an anonymous internet poster who gets his information from Google than 50+ years of research study and hard data

              • Vicky32

                 400? Where did you get that figure? 

                I already told you, from the NZ Herald! It really helps if you read with attention…
                Here’s another ‘anonymous’ internet poster for you (except that of course he’s not anonymous).
                (I think you’re underestimating how off piste someone gets when they are misdiagnosed because health professionals have their knickers in a knot. Hours at the neurology clinic, unnecessary drugs, a scary pack for ‘stroke patients’, smug anti-smoking nurses phoning at inconventient times, you name it.)

                • “already told you, from the NZ Herald!”

                  yes, but can you link to it? 

                  • Vicky32

                    yes, but can you link to it?

                    No, or I already would have.. Are you going to bother to read the article I did link to, or is your mind already firmly made up? 🙂

                    • I read the article but indeed, a single article from 1999 does not overturn 50+ years of research.

                      It’ll take more than that to convince to take up smoking again. 

                      P.S. every other metric puts deaths at 4000 – 5000 per year so the Herald must have it wrong

                  • mike e

                    there is a sucker born every minute

                  • Vicky32

                    It’ll take more than that to convince to take up smoking again.

                    Silly! No one’s asking you to!
                    All I am asking is that you stop bullying, and feeling superior to, people who smoke.
                    Alcohol however, is fine and normal it seems. My GP’s nurse counselled me to ‘cut back on my alcohol intake’ when she rang yesterday – and was amazed when I told her that I never drink alcohol. That’s cos everyone drinks alcohol, right? Er no, not everyone drinks…

                    • I drink heavily and used to smoke heavily

                      (I very rarely smoke now – but I don’t consider myself a “smoker” any more as I have broken the addiction part).

                      I have never bullied or felt superior to smokers.

    • Vicky32 11.3

      Fact (1), 10% of those who smoke will get lung cancer,
      Fact (2), 15% of those who get lung cancer will have no link to actual or passive smoking,
      Fact (3), 50% of those who get lung cancer are those who gave up smoking,
      fact (4), those with a specific gene anomaly are 30% more likely to get lung cancer,
      fact (5), those with a double gene anomaly are 70% more likely to get lung cancer,
      fact (6), in the UK 8% of lung cancers are directly caused by the work a person does,

      Or where they live! An ex-b/f has just been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, related to the lovely asbestos ceiling in his childhood home. He’s always been an anti-smoking fanatic, how ironic. He’s the only person I’ve ever known with lung cancer.

      fact (7) lung cancer has become more prevalent as people live longer, the average age of those who get lung cancer is 65, in the 1930s the average life expectancy was 57 so not many lived long enough to develop a lung cancer,

      Thanks for all that info! 🙂

      • bad12 11.3.1

        Yeah you are SO right there, i could and maybe should have put in fact (8), 1% of those who develop lung cancer will do so as a result of radon in the soil,usually where they reside.

        I didnt think that one was of that much importance seeing as it’s only 1% of lung cancers and i didn’t want to give you all info overload,

        The Google for all that is ”why don’t all smokers get cancer” and 1 through to 8 were gleaned off of the first 2 pages…

  11. Urban Rascal 12

    Posted this on the privatisation page but thought it might get a hit here:

    So I have a couple questions maybe someone can help me with. There’s alot of Rhetoric thrown around on the asset sales and I am fundamentally against transferring our dividend flow into the 10% of kiwi’s investing in the stock exchange. However I feel like there has been alot of seemingly unfactual statements from the blogs I read. Power prices will jump, we will lose infrastructure etc.
    It is my understanding that power prices should remain competitive in the mixed model, even in the private model (I know that’s based on a larger market in the USA though). Also the infrastructure for our grid is owned and maintained by Transpower, correct?, on the right they claim that power has increased 7% a year for however long failing to mention that the increase is “apparently” due to Transpower upgrading the Grid due to be complete in 2015. I’m guessing that power prices won’t fall back 7% after 2015 and this will lead to increases in the MOM’s profits as Transpowers charges decrease. So I can’t assume that prices will rise, but more transpowers charges will drop and the Government won’t be able to be held accountable for no drop in power rates as they would have been.
    Lastly on Cambell Live, Key mentions that our Kiwisaver and Super are heavily invested in Aussi Stocks. Is it not prudent to move them into our markets. It has been said that this is in essence a NZX bailout, but economically doesn’t it make sense to grow this exchange when Aussi growth is about to plummet on the back of China’s financial elephant in the room later this year?
    Also worth noting, nowhere in the SOE law does it mention that these companies are owned for the good of the people. They are stated to be run as profitable as possible and AirNZ seems to show that their model has been much more profitable than the previous model.
    I welcome these comments getting pulled the F*** apart. As these are just a collection of points I can’t decide on

    • Uturn 12.1

      To answer the part about whether SOEs are for the good of the people or not:

      Originally, the state often used the organisations they owned to control unemployment or address health issues – a social security initiative, if you like. For example, our current ACC has its birth around the turn of the twentieth century in the Workers Compensation Act. By 1972 it had developed into no-fault cover in place of people suing their employers for personal damages and became the Accident Compensation Act. Then in 1987 Rogernomics came along and decided everything had to make a profit and that resulted in staff cuts and claim restrictions – a contradiction of its purpose.

      Air NZ, too, was once called Tasman Empire Airways Limited. Established in 1939, the UK government withdrew in 1953 and Australia pulled out by 1961. In 1965 it was under full NZ government ownership and was renamed Air NZ. There is also a company called Kordia, that sixty years ago was the transmission and operations of what is now known as TVNZ.

      This is to say that the history of what we now know as profit driven corporate companies had their genesis and development in the collective efforts of NZders looking out for and supporting NZders in business, private life and especially health. They just didn’t magically appear on April 1st 1987, which is where the idea of profit, above all, was first stamped on them.

      This is why people like Phil Goff said (yes, somewhat ironically) in last election’s debates (and I’m paraphrasing here), “John, you don’t own these things”. No individual owns our SOEs and no individual or small group has the right to sell them. Unless John key and friends are over one hundred years old, and started these companies withth eir own money and efforts, or worked them with their own hands, they are really just opportunist corporate raiders. I doubt that surprises anyone. Changing the name on a historic company, or restructuring it, or part owning it, doesn’t eliminate the original purpose – as much as pollies of all colour have tried. Even deciding to turn them to tools of profit was a gross conceit. Modern media doesn’t examine where these companies came from and people generally don’t ask.

      • Urban Rascal 12.1.1

        Cheers man, as a 24 yr old with no background in political studies I have very little knowledge of our countries history prior Helen Clark really. I have read a enough recently to have learnt the greatness of Savage, and essentially that most of our countries greatest policies/achievements that we claim to be proud of seem to come from Labour governments.

        I don’t really understand what they were doing in the 80’s though.
        I definetly think selling them is a crazy no-win situation, but I do think there is alot of off topic or irrelevant banter thrown in. “We will pay more for power” can easily be ignored by the general public as tarrot-reading. 120 million for the sale and the loss of 150 million in dividends a year is abit harder to ignore. Or atleast if found that in discussion.

        I think it’s worth remembering, National got in because of peoples fear of the economy to a degree. And even though alot of people are against the sales alot of them are still afraid and really believe National have the best economic record. Whether or not this is true, bashing them with idealogical left rhetoric is not going to get them on your side long term, they are still right and they still think wealth trickles down.

        • Kotahi Tane Huna

          National got in because of amnesia. It only took from 1999 to 2005 for a large proportion of the electorate to lose its memory and forget exactly what the National Party is.

          We only escaped their incompetence in 2005 because Brash is so phenomenally incompetent it couldn’t be ignored, but Bill English’s incompetence is at least a match for Brash’s.

          Now the chisellers have their wallets open, shovelling tax-payer dollars in as fast as they can, for the next two years. And the electorate is reminded what the National Party is.

          • Kevin

            National got in because the left ran a completely weak and ineffective anti asset sales campaign prior to the election and failed miserably to engage the voting public who stayed away from the polling booths in their tens of thousands.
            Consequently I have no sympathy for the left who are whining on about the Nats not having a mandate when clearly they only have themselves to blame for their own laziness and poor performance on polling day.

            • Kotahi Tane Huna

              That’s hardly surprising. You don’t strike me as someone to whom sympathy comes easily.

              I’m not talking about the left however, I’m talking about the electorates ability to forget what the National Party is.

          • Urban Rascal

            As a young member of society, you can’t expect young New Zealanders to know the finer details of previous National or Labour governments. We aren’t taught this at school and our Parents will only speak of their own beliefs. As someone who wasn’t able to vote until Clarke’s last term I have only recently learnt more about our political history, and find it a crock to claim amnesia against the whole voting public.
            This only really applies to the younger of us really, the majority should have known.

            • Kotahi Tane Huna

              “If you end up with a boring miserable life because you listened to your mom, your dad, your teacher, your priest, or some guy on television telling you how to do your shit, then you deserve it.”
              ― Frank Zappa

              If you take it too literally I guess the amnesia analogy falls over, but consider the fact that the same set of people (plus one parachuted-in smiley-wavy guy with no previous form) that were turfed out in 1999 were able to form a government in 2008. They’re displaying exactly the same bleedin’ useless incompetence as last time. If you can think of a better term than electoral amnesia let’s hear it.

              The National Party has recessions when the rest of the world is fine. Amnesia.

              • That’s a great quote from a legend and true. That’s why i’m here, if I followed my parents views I’d be at the NZHerald site. But past political history is a huge amount of information to handle and not part of my working or social life, so you’ll have to forgive my ignorance. I for one didn’t know that the 1999 National members are still the main crew behind Key.
                I would publicly state that I think National has gone off the rails the last 7 months on nearly ever issue.
                But Cunliffe is saying some great things. I am hopeful that the country isn’t going to be to bad by 2014.

                • Kotahi Tane Huna

                  Give or take a few they are essentially the same crowd – and frankly most of the time it’s only the faces that change anyway – the apparent innumeracy and grasping sense of born-to-rule entitlement mixed with hatred and suspicion of the “other” abides.

                  Any book dealing with NZ politics could easily carry the subtitle: “Cleaning Up After The National Party.”

                  • chris73

                    Yeah because the fourth labour government didn’t drop the ball or anything and its not like any of that term are still hanging around (there really needs to be a sarcasm emoticon)

                    • ropata

                      A history lesson for the young or obnoxious

                      In the seventies global oil supplies were at risk, there were carless days and no-petrol weekends, inflation was 15-20%, wildcat strikes were commonplace, consumer goods & travel cost a lot more, houses cost a lot less

                      National PM Muldoon ran up huge foreign debts with Think Big projects, froze wages and prices, and stayed on friendly terms with apartheid era South Africa. This ruined the 1976 Olympics and the led to the infamous 1981 Springbok tour protests.

                      Muldoon also cancelled a retirement savings scheme introduced by Labour that would be worth tens of billions today, and would have eliminated any reason to sell state assets.

                      Labour was open to desperate measures when the coutry was in crisis in 1984, and mad idealogues like (ACT party founders) Roger Douglas and Richard Prebble went overboard with deregulation, destroying our productive industrial base, and selling assets off cheap to dodgy asset strippers like Fay, Richwhite (Jones, Fletcher also did well)

                      This nearly destroyed the LP but the National government that followed (1990) was even worse, so Helen Clark was elected in 1999 on a far more moderate platform, akin to Blair’s Third Way. And now at last the LP seems to have figured out that, in economic and social terms it was all bullshit and a return to egalitarian Kiwi values is the way of the future.

                      (Ironically if we had kept the Think Big projects in state ownership they would have paid for themselves by now and would be a great income stream for NZ)

            • freedom

              urban rascal Why does your handle link go to a commercial IT service? deleted.com

              • Urban Rascal

                sorry, I don’t know. First time posting, that has been sitting in the website caption all day. Thought it was default haha.

                • freedom

                  and earlier you asked what happened in the 80’s?
                  treasury lied to Labour, who had been hijacked by neolibs who decided to sell a bunch of stuff that didn’t have to be sold to pay debts that didn’t really exist. Lots of people up and down the isles stayed very very drunk and took a lot of very interesting drugs for a few years and everything basically went to crap according to a well scripted plan that resulted in workers being reduced to serfs, any nz business worth a dime forced out so imports could increase and economists were elevated to demi-god status regardless of whether they could actually count.

                  We also made some great films, music, art, folk tried to play sport in strange places and we managed to tell the USA to shove their bombs anywhere but here

                  • freedom

                    remiss of me not to mention property market insanity, the taciturn allocution of land disputes and realisation that a language which should always have been there was finally allowed into NZ schools.

                    all in all a hell of decade

                    can’t help but feel this decade is shaping up to be a slightly different beastie.

                    • ropata

                      Also in the Eighties
                      * half the world boycotted the Moscow Olympics because of a war in Afghanistan
                      * 1981 Springbok Tour ripped the nation in two
                      * Rainbow Warrior sabotaged by France because of greenpeace nuke protests
                      * School Certificate/UE replaced by incomprehensible NCEA system

        • mike e

          Urban rascal Media(murdoched) and money was the reason the left didn’t get in if not for the cup of tea National would have coasted in.
          If people had known that this election was going to be so close more would have turned out and trickle down would have become trickle up.

          • Urban Rascal

            Ah but the teacup was important so National has a far-right partner to “blame” for charter schools and asset sale. Hence John Banks still not called on his obvious law breaking across the board. But are you saying the cup of Tea brought their vote down. I don’t think so.

            The cup of tea was a media blowout to right supporters that I know. The effect of the tea-tape seems to be a higher level of scrutiny on the Governments subsequent gaffs. I think these were probably always there last term, just not picked up by mainstream media.

            I personally think we were under some psych conditioning through media reporting (biased landline polls etc). If you tell the public for three years that John Key and National are preferred leaders by huge margins, you can’t help but think this effects the less intelligent of us valuing the power of their vote. Hence, low turnout.

            My question would be, what changed? What did National do to seriously upset the media enough to make their last 7 months hell?

    • DH 12.2

      Well for starters the power price increases weren’t all due to Transpower charges and they won’t reduce those later either, those increases are fixed. Transpower has invested more money in infrastructure, the higher charges reflect what they require to get a return from the investment.

      Secondly the AirNZ ‘model’ was a taxpayer bailout of a private business, there isn’t a shred of evidence to suggest that AirNZ is in any way advantaged by the minority private shareholding. It shows only that the state runs an airline better and more profitably than the private sector does. References to AirNZ by Key & co are downright dishonest.

      Thirdly Kiwisaver providers invest in whatever markets give them best returns for least risk. There are no guarantees that the NZX will provide that even with the SOEs listed. The Kiwisaver providers may buy the shares now & then sell again later. If the NZX isn’t performing then it has some fundamental faults and artificially boosting it with a taxpayer bailout won’t solve the underlying problems will it. We gave the NZX a whole bunch of our assets previously, why would a few more make a difference when the first tranches didn’t?

      And etc etc.. none of the arguments for hold up to scrutiny.

      • Urban Rascal 12.2.1

        So essentially, they are empty promises that aren’t binding or infact relevant to the argument National are making.
        AirNZ seems to me like they are a much more well run company now to me though. Consistently regarded as one of the better airlines in the world etc. Surely this a benefit to the 51% stake the government holds?

        I don’t agree in throwing the NZX a bone, but wouldn’t these 4 companies listing on the NZX boost our domestic economy with the transactions going through them? Wouldn’t that be a good thing with our two biggest markets grinding to a halt?

        • DH

          The Govts argument about AirNZ is that the private shareholding has contributed towards it’s success since it was bailed out by the taxpayer. That, if it were true, would add weight to the argument that we should give the private sector a shareholding in the SOEs. I’d give them 10 points for gall but it’s pure spin because there simply is no evidence that the private shareholding has advantaged AirNZ in any shape or form. They’re just bullshitting.

          AirNZ is well run now because the state put up cash to take it over and brought in better management practices. It doesn’t follow that a minority private shareholding is beneficial.

          How would it boost the economy? I’m pretty certain that trading in shares doesn’t contribute to GDP and that’s just gambling anyway, we’ve already got casinos & horse racing & lotto & TAB why do we need more? We already get the dividends from the SOEs so I can’t see how transferring some of the dividends to the NZX will benefit the economy. The SOEs pay tax already so there’s no gains there. Where are the benefits?

          • Urban Rascal

            You are correct. That’s all I can say.
            I was under the belief that shares effected the economy directly by effecting the amount of $ coming through the country. In essence like how the USA manage to hold their economy together by having oil purchases done in $US around the world. But the benefits of holding onto them by far outweigh the gamble that the NZX is, thanks for your rational response.

            • DH

              One of the arguments does warrant a reasonable inspection, that of increasing the amount of people investing in shares. The argument from Key is that getting more people involved in the sharemarket will bring more interest in shares and boost demand for the likes of rights issues and IPOs. That does benefit the economy.

              The core role of the sharemarket is to act as a vehicle for private business to raise capital and the NZX has been an abject failure at that. Actual share trading doesn’t really benefit a business much at all, they’re not getting any capital out of it that’s just gambling by share traders. The SOEs get nothing from this float. An increase in its share price enables a business to borrow more but that’s not necessarily good for the economy.

              It’s hard to accept that argument however because previous history doesn’t support it. We’ve already been down the road of floating SOEs on the sharemarket and it didn’t lead to the conclusion Key & co say this will lead to. If anything it will just starve the NZX of capital, it’s going to soak up a good few $billion of capital much of which might have been invested in shares anyway.

              I agree that some of the arguments against are also wrong but IMO the weight of evidence is very much on the side of those opposing the sales.

            • Draco T Bastard

              The share-market is supposed to be a way for businesses to raise needed cash. Neither the SoEs nor the government are in such a position. The SoEs are doing quite well thank you and the government never needs to borrow – it can just print the cash and/or raise taxes.

              What the share-market has become is a gambling arena where people speculate on the prices of the shares and nothing else. Basically, betting for untaxed capital gains.

              • ropata

                (a plagiarised comment)
                The stock market is [supposed] to facilitate the trading of securities. The societal good of that is that it frees up and allocates money to companies that are producing more value , or doing it more efficiently. This is a way to reward smart companies and incentivize new technologies.

                This [high frequency trading] shit has nothing to do with any of that. They’re gaming the system for a purpose to which it was never meant to be put and further, they’re endangering everyone else while they’re at it. Those are just the facts.. Greed has located a positive feedback loop and is exploiting it in a predictably greedy fashion.

                The thing is, this is obviously reckless and has nothing to do with free markets. It’s as if we threw away any concept of a social good except the servicing of the impulses of richest greediest people our society can produce.

                Greed is an innate flaw in human thinking under most circumstances. It’s not some magic rocket fuel that impels society towards greater wealth and innovation. That’s a bullshit narrative told to you by drug addicts who don’t want to be separated from their drug . And nothing more.

                The thing is, the fanaticism on the right is also in a positive feedback loop with the right wing noise machine. Even though their economic deregulatory policies cratered the economy, they are taught how to deny that fact by the right wing noise machine. This clears them to vote more of the same into office.

                We’ve effectively turned our economy over to people with a a group of compulsive gamblers and risk junkies. This is a completely different thing than supporting risk taking entrepreneurs.

                Societies live, grow and die. They die because they become captive to an entrenched minority who games the social cultural political system and secures for itself some positive feedback loop that reinforces their power and permits them to write the rules of society to their personal, narrow advantage. Thenceforward, at every decision point, their local, short terms needs are serviced first and in our case, almost exclusively.

                We may be living in a dying society that will catastrophically implode . Our refusal to address global warming in more of the same dynamic with the oil and coal companies finding a positive feedback loop in their campaign contributions and right wing noise machine.

                You have to understand that rational thinking and reasoning about even the basic, obvious facts of the world does NOT come naturally to people. As proof of this I offer a recent story about an ongoing cause for mass murder in Africa- Penis Shrinkage Through Sorcery.

                I ‘ll link to the Reuters story because otherwise you might suppose I am accidentally reporting satire.


          • Fortran


            As Warren Bufett says “should he consider buying into any airline please dial 111”.
            Whilst I like to fly AirNZ I would not touch them as an investment, but the Energy companies for a long term investment – bring it on.

            • Urban Rascal

              If I wasn’t saving to leave the country I would be spending the $1000 to get some shares in Might River. Sounds like a very low risk investment.
              Say what you will about a 24yr old graduate having to leave the country to substantially pay off my loan. National haven’t come to the table on that one.

            • DH

              I think you’re mad. Having five identical power companies on the NZX is a recipe for disaster in the longer term. We’ll end up with some getting into serious financial strife & some expanding and we won’t know which until it starts happening.

              Seriously, surely no-one can expect the share price of each company to follow exactly the same path. All it takes is for one megalomaniac CEO who wants to make a name for him/herself and all bets are off.

              Personally I’d probably buy NZX shares if I was going to buy any, they’re the ones who look to benefit the most with all the ticket clipping.

            • mike e

              footrot with out AirNZ air travel would be dearer tourism would decline and the main reason Dr Cullen bought the airline was high value exports.AirNZ by far has the biggest cargo carrying capacity.
              Other progressive govts like Singapore also realise the long term advantages.
              Once again the invisible hand of the Market definitely doesn’t Know best

    • prism 12.3

      Urban Rascal at 10.40 am.
      Hit that enter button and put one or better two paragraphs in this length comment. It’s a brick to swallow as it is.

  12. DH 13

    Anyone read Bob Jones’s column in the Herald. It’s curious timing in light of the youtube hit about the overweight US woman on the school bus being taunted by a bunch of kids…

    “Roll up, roll up – see the skinny freak”


    I remember the overweight kids at school. I can also remember the bullies who picked on them and I know which of the two I see in that article. Seems money & knighthood don’t a gentleman make.

    • Kevin 13.1

      I read Sir Bob Jones’ narcissistic misogynistic rant about overweight female civil servants in Wellington’s CBD yesterday and it confirmed for me that anything this man comments on is vacuous tripe from an old codger who spends his money on pretty young girls from Bulgaria.

      • mike e 13.1.1

        no wonder his daughter went off the rails.

        • ropata

          i like big butts and i cannot lie

          skinny does not always mean healthy, in many cases it is quite the opposite.
          look at the All Blacks and Silver Ferns. big strong Kiwis beating the world.

          • Vicky32

            skinny does not always mean healthy

            Absolutely true…  I would love to gain about 5kg, I simply can’t, and it’s not for want of trying… 🙁

            • Jackal

              If you stop smoking you’ll gain some weight Vicky32.

              Boy that article by the old crook Bob Jones is a complete disgrace! He comes across as a dirty old man slavering over a young Bulgarian girl and stigmatizing people with weight problems because he’s dissatisfied with his shriveled up old impotent white body. Yuck!

              These human hippos are self made and ridicule may inspire them to unmake their degrading situation. It’s not hard. Just stop stuffing yourself with rubbish.

              Jones fails to understand that insulting fat people will only make them look for further comfort in food. The main problem is the subsidized processed and fast food industries, whereby people are brainwashed into buying food that is unhealthy for them.

              Of course Jones fails to mention this at all because it goes against his capitalist running dog belief system. The sooner he pops his clogs the better.

              • Vicky32

                If you stop smoking you’ll gain some weight Vicky32.

                Easier said than done, but we’ll see! 🙂

    • Campbell Larsen 13.2

      The following was sent to Herald by Eden – I will keep you posted on the response.

      Dear Editor,

      I am writing to complain about Sir Bob Jones’ article ‘Roll up, roll up – see the skinny freak’.
      Weight-based discrimination is a significant social problem and a human rights issue in Aotearoa New Zealand bringing distress to the lives of many hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders. We see this first hand with the resulting difficult and disordered relationships with food, eating and body image amongst those who face discrimination.

      Sir Bob Jones fails to get the important health promotion message through that we all need to live actively and eat a range of nutrition regardless of shape and size and that we need to be using a far wider range of determinants of health, rather than just weight or for that matter relying solely on Sir Bob Jones’ personal aesthetic preferences!

      In a country which already struggles with high levels of size discrimination and appearance bullying, publishing an article like this is irresponsible. This is an issue at a grass root level and at a public policy level. The Youth ’07 Survey found that that appearance bullying is the most prevalent type of bullying in New Zealand schools, alongside sexuality. In addition, our Human Rights Act allows for protection of many forms of discrimination, but for those who discriminated based on size, shape or weight, there is no protection under the law.

      The outrageously fat phobic comments in the article are shaming and scientifically incorrect. The implication that all those people who have a BMI which sits in the ‘over weight’ or ‘obese’ categories are unhealthy is unfounded. In fact the members of our All Blacks team, held up as the epitome of health and fitness, all fit into these BMI categories.

      Sir Bob Jones’ assertion that “ridicule may inspire them to unmake their degrading” is completely contrary to the research which shows that bullying has a negative impact on body image and on the uptake of physical activity. In fact, the better someone’s body image is, the more likely they are to partake in physical activity, regardless of shape of size. Sir Bob Jones would be better of focusing on boosting body image, rather than promoting hatred and discrimination.

      Eden – Specialist in Eating Issues and Body Image since 1990

  13. Te Reo Putake 14

    Just saw this headline on Stuff: ‘Whales need to sleep around’. Well, I’ll beef hooked!

    • mike e 15.1

      muzza so we can be all peasant farmers like the third world.

      • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1

        Peasant farmers are a dying breed in the “third world” as the big corporations are a) buying up all the farming land and b) flooding the market with cheap food driving the remaining farmers into poverty forcing them to sell. Charity doesn’t help on that latter point either.

        • Macro

          And the developed world is also heading in that direction as well, as we loose control of our land and assets under the WTO, IMF, and World Bank agendas of the Globalisation of Poverty. (But you know that already Draco. 🙂 )

  14. ianmac 16

    Question being asked in the House about the legitimacy of the Asset vote. Just caught the end of the debate but it seemed that there were questions about the rightness of Dunne’s vote being given by proxy. Lockwood has closed it down but…. Mmmmm?

    • deuto 16.1

      Here is the link to the full discussion/video today on this – http://inthehouse.co.nz/node/13588

      Last night Andrew Williams (NZF) tried to get the Assoc Speaker (Eric Roy) to agree to a personal vote on the MOM legislation after the final vote at 61/60. He requested a personal vote under Standing Order 141 which apparently provides for a personal vote when a party vote is very close. Roy turned down his request, but Williams then today asked Lockwood Smith as Speaker to give an opinion etc on the possibility.

      There was a interesting discussion on this with National obviously opposing, but the course of the discussion included reference to having to have 25% of Members of a party being physically within the precinct of Parliament at the time of the vote in order to allow all votes by that party to be counted. By implication rather than direct speak, what was being referred to was the exercising and counting of votes by the one man band parties (ACT and UF) when neither Banks or Dunne were in the House at the time of the MOM votes. Who knows where Banks was but we do know that Dunne was not presumably in the precincts of Parliament at the time but at a funeral (mother of Dunne’s son’s girlfriend according to Stuff). Pretty sure Favell was actually in the House at the time of last night’s votes, so MP’s negative votes were OK.

      I was interrupted towards the end of today’s discussion but think Winston raised a theoretical situation of some sort and asked Smith to provide a later opinion on that, but happy to be corrected. Don’t have time right now to rewatch.

  15. fisiani 17

    Anyone want to comment on the latest Roy Morgan poll?

    • chris73 17.1

      I’m sure someone will spin as great news for the left

    • ad 17.2

      In National’s probable populist favour is:
      – the car crushing
      – coming down harder on beneficiaries
      – reversing decision on school teacher numbers
      – getting tough with the ACC Board
      – continuing dominance of the political discourse

      In Labour’s probable favour is:
      – base supported with Cunliffe’s 2 speeches within the poll
      – Shearer tracking better and sounding a little smoother

      A little surprised at NZ First, since they had their conference in that time, and Greens have profiled well on Asset Sale story.

      Labour have such a long, long way to go up after their utter shellacking last time. But (sigh) at least they are gonig up. Labour won’t beat them in 2014 unless they have a champoin who goes toe to toe with Key, every major time, and also develop a superior populist gene to National.

  16. AnnaLiviaPluraBella 18

    Red Alert now has David Cunliffe’s Titirangi speech published.


    • ad 18.1

      This speech is the first time I have seen a real intersection between Labour and the Greens. Can anyone recall a more thorough, more grounded speech from a New Zealand elected politician?

      It doesn’t actually mention the Green party, but it nails their political economy namely: that there is no return to the way of life that we are in, we must change, and it still won’t be enough.

      Surely it is time for Shearer to admit that the Greens are Labour’s most likely coalition partners, and start using this as a philosophical basis for a coalition discussion.

      There are plenty of smaller parties to eat, rather than each other.

  17. Salsy 19

    Hope everyone has posted a scathing remark here..
    Are you for or against partial sales of state assets?

  18. rosy 20

    Well the private finance initiatives (PFIs) in the UK to build health infrastructure are all turning to custard (that is, if providing cheaper health services, rather than transferring wealth, was the aim).

    A senior Conservative has attacked some private finance initiative deals on which the NHS now relies for much of its new infrastructure as “indefensible”, as the government prepares to take the unprecedented step of effectively letting a trust running three hospitals to go bankrupt.

    The former Tory health secretary Stephen Dorrell carefully did not put the blame on his own party, which first introduced PFI in the 1990s, for the crisis facing the South London Healthcare NHS Trust, which is likely to be placed in a form of special measures after accumulating a deficit of £150m.

    Ministers are blaming an “unaffordable” PFI deal signed under Labour, which enthusiastically took up the model, as they prepare the trust to be placed in the “unsustainable providers regime”.

    And this is not the only NHS trust in trouble due to PFIs. Not that our government will pause for thought before using PFIs for schools.

  19. ScottGN 21

    QT today in The House. Winston to Paula Bennett (on behalf of her Associate Minister Turia – a concept Bennet seemed to struggle with at times). He did her over like a dog’s dinner.

    • ianmac 21.1

      And didn’t Paula look peeved. Collins and Bennett are often spiteful during question time and it was OK with me to see Paula looking defensive and a bit out of her depth for a change.

  20. Tazirev 22

    MY head hurts, can some one please explain in simple language why this happened given that Peter Dunne Proxy vote carried the Asset Stripping Bill ????


    • fender 22.1

      A formula is used to determine the number of proxy votes a party can have.

      Conveniently for NACT UF Sharples couldnt cast a proxy.

  21. Colonial Viper 23

    California city of Stockton, pop 291,000, set to go bankrupt

    Yep. When the debt based financialisation of the real world economy pops, this is what you get.


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