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Open mike 28/09/2014

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, September 28th, 2014 - 67 comments
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openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

67 comments on “Open mike 28/09/2014 ”

  1. raa 1

    I’m tired of self-flagellation, so let’s give credit to Joyce and ‘National’ for running an effective campaign.

    The branding of Harry Holland in ‘51 is easily demolished – suggesting that the interests of beneficiaries and billionaires are the same.

    I noticed a full-size poster at my bus stop saying “The Film Industry Thanks You” featuring a minotaur-like human with horns, what appeared to be unused props, and an attractive young woman facing the camera.

    Remembering Weta’s involvement in NZ politics to change industrial legislation, it troubled me.

    When I went to take a digital image of it a few days later, it had gone.

    Then, at a pre-election candidates forum in Miramar a young intellectual type piped up about the ‘film industry’.

    Straws in the wind, perhaps – but I would be interested in any other crowd-sourced observations of the ‘National’ Party campaign

    Perhaps these ..

    “An open letter from John Key”



    • Peter 1.1

      So average wages will increase several thousand over the next three years according to Mr Key. How will this come about?

      • dv 1.1.1

        Yep happening already.

        Sky tv CEO
        got a 7.6 per cent pay rise after a record net profit for the year to June 30 with a package of $1.8 million

        That is an increase of 138k per yr.

    • Murray Olsen 1.2

      Pete George is like a beached whale. He doesn’t get better with age. I wonder when he’ll get over the breakup of his relationship with The Standard?

  2. mickysavage 2

    Dear media. The causes of Labour’s election performance are complex and multifaceted. Can you stop treating New Zealanders like a bunch of idiots and start a more complex discussion about what happened?

    • Lindsey 2.1

      Complex? Discussion? Media? You jest methinks.

    • Ergo Robertina 2.2

      Wayne Brittenden’s Counterpoint just now on Radio NZ furnished a nuanced and fair analysis of the election. Pointed to the fact the Labour Party is to the right of Rob Muldoon on economics, in a piece that critiqued the notion of ‘the centre ground’ and how far right it has been pushed.

    • tc 2.3

      The left = bad, regardless of facts with the MSM who wag their tails on command as DP has shown. Dumbing down is part of the strategy.

      Any who oppose the rights powerful allies such as academics, industry bodies, support groups etc will be smeared, mis represented and outright lied about if thats what it takes.

      Failure to deal with this reality and counter it will continue to cost the left dearly as the MSM will continue unaffected as evidence suggests with DPF and Hooten not even having a breather and straight into it again.

      Quit living in an ideal construct and figure out how to deal with reality, it aint fair but then life is not fair so why expect it from our corporate and govt owned media.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.3.1

        Any who oppose the rights powerful allies such as academics, industry bodies, support groups etc will be smeared, mis represented and outright lied about if thats what it takes.

        And that is exactly what we saw here: DPF attacking an academic with lies.

    • tricle up 2.4


  3. Adrian 3

    dead right Mickey. But why oh why are the”media” fueling the “every body for Robertson “campaign.
    Because they want a new target for vilification.
    The old story
    ” Lets attack DC because he’s married and got 2 kids… oh wait”.
    ” Because he’s intelligent and got a Harvard degree and no commercial experience….oh wait”
    ” Because he lives in a 2 million dollar house in central Auckland…oh shit that’s avg price there”
    ” Because he comprehensively lost the caucus vote…what? 18-16…bugger”.
    ” Because he grew up poor and played rugby.. hang on”.
    ” Fuck it ..OK who’s next”.
    Robertson…Oh Yeah, PAYDIRT!

    • Olwyn 3.1

      It looks to me like the political/media elite rushing to protect themselves from competing ideas, with the potential to weaken their power base.

  4. weka 4

    not all bears ‏@thelittlepakeha 14 mins,

    “if I wanted good examples of charities that have had their funding cut by govt, whether just because or after criticism of govt,

    where would be a good place to look? particular blogs?”

    Anyone remember? I think we’ve had discussions here about this.

  5. yeshe 5


    Anyone interested in who benefitted in the SCF was bankrupted and bailed out under Govct guarantee might want to read this. Am I reading correctly — that ACC and Crown Asset Management are deeply involved in this schmozzle ? Registered away from NZ taxes in Caymans ?

    And wasn’t George Kerr reported as receiving $100 million of govt guarantee funds from his very belated SCF bond purchases ?

    Stinky much ??

    “Investors in a secretive private equity partnership are rebelling against its manager, enigmatic Kiwi businessman George Kerr, as scandal threatens to engulf the $240m fund.

    The Torchlight Fund, now domiciled in the Cayman Islands, was formed in 2010 to invest in distressed assets such as South Canterbury Finance.

    The identity of its partners has never been formally disclosed but Fairfax NZ understands they include New Zealand government entities Crown Asset Management and ACC, whose estimated respective exposures stemming from the South Canterbury collapse are about $30m and $2.5m.”


    • dv 5.1

      There needs to be a in-depth investigation.

      Read my comment here from Paul Caruthers video (The video is now taken down!!!)

      Health service funding

      and Sarahs reply

      Health service funding

      Very smelly.

    • Sarah 5.2

      This present Government will not want an investigation in to Kerr’s ties with SCF because I bet they invested in Kerr via ACC and NZ Super . Torchlight was formed in June 2009 — just ready for SCF to announce its loss $$$( but underlying profit ) ….

      The bigger problem under the GG was not highlighted , follow your noses or google and then you will understand – SCF was small fry as a liability but a goldmine of assets.

      $Southbury invested in irrigation infrastructure and by 2009 the present Govt were secretly planning funding on a grand scale of irrigation. Secret cabinet papers were gained by NZ Herald under OIA – showing just that.

      Hubbard’s Southbury supported large schemes, Hunter Downs, Central Plains, etc etc … and he was taken out of the picture. By 2012 the Canterbury Irrigation Schemes were worth a reported $5billion to the Canterbury economy alone…

      The true value of the Hubbard empire was far in excess of what the paper figures portray and were sold of undervalue in cases that were highlighted to media. Scales a value of $4 a share sold to Direct Capital for $2 – DC sold out 80% for a cool $180million just recently, There are many more and others hide under a cloak of secrecy. Face Finance bought by GE and interestingly it was GE that pulled funding last minute for Helicopters NZ and forced Hubbard in to the breach. They buy FACE Finance and now specialise in aviation and increased their assets by a cool $600million…..

      Aorangi was NEVER insolvent – Hubbard placed equity in well above what was required… that has proven to be so based on the managers own reporting and the fact the investors have returned 99% funds less $12 million in fees alone for Aorangi.

      Easy to use the media to destroy a man and his reputation – Stat Management is a very dangerous law that is open to political abuse… a court order should have been required – in that case Hubbard would never have been in Stat Management , the $60million so called fraud transaction out was actually the money he put in… the original fact sheet was wrong. When the Regulators realised that mistake (the Stats reversed this transaction out of Aorangi at the start) they should have acknowledged the mistake – they did not , instead continued on as if Hubbard was the thief… and destroyed him along the way with the spin via MSM.

      This only touches the surface – it is an absolute shameful event from beginning to end. BUT Allan Hubbard was trialed again with SCF (even when dead and unable to defend himself) and most likely in Oct it will be confirmed to be “All Allan Hubbard’s fault”….

  6. James Thrace 7

    Got a phone call to renew my Labour membership last night at 9.30pm. Had already done so online and told Fraser House as such. Said that I’d rejoined just so I could vote back DC because as a gay man myself, Robertson leaves me cold and I couldn’t see how he could appeal to the redneck rugby playing non urban voters. Coupled with the fact his electorate vote went down, as well as only getting third in the party vote in 2014, how he could claim to represent Labour was unthinkable.

    On the bright side, membership is only valid till Dec 31 so if Robertson unfortunately manages to win, at least I don’t need to worry about renewing my membership on Jan 1 2015.

  7. Chooky 8

    Update on Petition….come on! ….sign up!… lets reach 10,000….lets try and give the Nacts a run for their money

    …if it is not fraud …i am sure that it would have been, if they could have wangled it!


    this is quite funny imo..if it wasnt so serious!…(love the computer guy!)


  8. katz 9

    Can someone please confirm the cut-off date for new members wanting to vote for the Labour party leader. “Keep Cunliffe as Labour Leader” on Facebook is saying it was 11.30pm yesterday. ??? Thanks.

    • lurgee 9.1

      I hope it was yesterday, because it is quite unpleasant seeing a bunch of carpetbaggers joining up just to vote.

      • DC for PM 9.1.1

        Lurgee, they’re joining up because they genuinely care about the Labour Party and the future wellbeing of New Zealand – and they wholeheartedly believe that David Cunliffe is the best man to take on John Key in 2017, having had the benefit of three more years’ experience.

        The Facebook page supporting him has over 4,300 likes already, and it was only set up a week ago.

        Surely that’s a good thing, driving up the membership of the Labour Party? Why are they ‘carpetbaggers’ as you suggest, just because this upsetting election loss has motivated ordinary people to act? They’ve realised that if the Labour Party is to survive, they need to get involved as supporters and volunteers.

        Shouldn’t the members ultimately determine the future of the Labour Party, and its policies, not the MPs who represent us? That’s why they demanded constitutional changes last year, after decades of being ignored.

        • lurgee

          I’m entirely in favour of membership choosing the leader. It should, IMHO, be an equal vote. Why should the votes of caucus count for more than the votes of an ordinary member. It’s not a very socialist idea.

          But I still find the idea of people joining a party just so they can vote in an election deeply worrying. Obviously, you’ll disagree as the sign ups seem to be favouring Cunliffe and your handle suggests you might be a bit partisan.

  9. Vaughan Little 10

    I recently read this quote by GB Shaw: “Newspapers are unable to discriminate betweeen a bicycle crash and the collapse of civilization.” Shaw died in 1950 – the media has been a problem for a long time. One of the problems lies in daily publication; it tends toward an ADHD mentality that robs issues of their necessary depth.

    We do need publicly funded news media outlets with a robust mandate to not treat the public like idiots. The health of our democracy depends on it. Living in China, and looking at NZ, it’s very clear to me that propaganda does have a power to influence our minds, and the only way to avoid its power is to be seriously paying attention to what’s going on – which no one can do about everythng all the time.

    I came across a sharply pixelated example of how propaganda works, in Russell Brown’s Hard News post on Sep 24:

    “….Gower’s conduct in the press conference made me uneasy.

    He shouted at Cunliffe, a lame-duck leader with no good answers, for the answers he wanted. And then he barked: “Just say it — stop being tricky!”

    “Tricky”. It’s hard to over-emphasise quite how loaded that word is. “Tricky David Cunliffe” is an attack line conceived and cultivated by Cunliffe’s National Party opponents over the entire time of his Labour leadership. There can barely be a National minister who hasn’t deployed it: The first few Google results for the phrase turn up Todd McLay, Amy Adams, John Key and, naturally, Whaleoil. Its organised use had a lot to do with shaping the popular perception of Cunliffe. It would not have had meaning without Cunliffe’s missteps, but it was a very successful political strategy.

    For these reasons, it’s a line that a journalist simply should not be using.”

    • Rodel 10.1

      And Cunliffe’s reply? …”Nice Try Paddy ” was ok by me but I think the general public would have preferred a ‘Muldoon’ type of reply to Gower’s obnoxious disrespect and egotistical rudeness.

      I would have said, “F*ck off Gower you little creep!” but that’s why I wouldn’t make it as a politician or a diplomat.

      Cunliffe has remarkable self control.

    • Hanswurst 10.2

      It’s also an interesting chicken-and-egg situation, since some of Cunliffe’s “missteps” that initially got the idea of trickiness into the mainstream consciousness (e. g. the intial Best Start announcement, the Dongha Liu letter) are only really missteps in the context of the media reaction that was constructed around them.

      • Vaughan Little 10.2.1

        Yeah but on top of that, he does occasionally drop the ball. Such as setting up a trust to protect the identities of his financial backers or not communicating better with Goff in the 2011 election campaign.

        Some think these things are examples of serious character flaws; I don’t. I simply think he’s clumsy sometimes. That clumsiness could become a major liability if he were seeking a third or fourth term as PM, cos you know he’s gonna hand his opponents something they could build a serious attack around. But fuckit, if you obsess too much about the enemy it puts you off your own game.

        • Hanswurst

          I hear what you’re saying, but Clark, Goff, Key, English… even Cullen managed to put their feet in it at times. Key’s probably the most clumsy, in fact (“We’d love to see wages drop”, Tranzrail shares, anything to do with the appointment of Ian Fletcher, “That’s one scientists opinion and I could probably find other experts to back up mine”, “Gay red shirt”, “Trotie”… he’s a veritable Mr. Magoo), but it doesn’t count against him. Key has a solid reputation and even a very long string of frequent gaffes doesn’t really seem to have endangered that. Cunliffe, once generally viewed as a person of substance, would also not be damaged by the odd bit of clumsiness.

          • Rodel

            Key’s gaffes are not seized on by the media.They love ‘gaffes’ by anyone on he left. In their desperation for scandal headlines they salivate, enhance and exaggerate any slight mistake by Cunliffe and gloss over any of Key’s.

            Or maybe it’s the editors who are further up the right wing food /money chain do the changes to the journalists original copy giving it a right wing slant.

  10. Vaughan Little 11

    People are saying a lot of negative stuff about Grant Robertson. I’ve had personal experience of the guy and my impression is that he’s decent, superbrainy and he could be a good leader of the country. While he’s a good public speaker, he aint super-presidential, but then Labour shouldn’t bee seeking to follow the crowd in its approach to politics – that’d be like a good honest family restaurant emulating McDonalds to get more people through the door. You compromise your essential character and you’ll never be McDonands anyway.

    Personally I’ve never seen evidence of anything like an ABC faction. A bunch of MPs dislike Cunliffe; that’s life. Some of these MPs have been attacking him through the media in a disgusting, cowardly manner, thereby undermining the party. Even worse, by undermining the party they’re adding to the suffering of the people the party needs to get into power to serve: The quarter of a million kids who live in poverty, low wage workers, the wider precariat, the small businesses who need a supportive policy environment in which to prosper – this is why their actions are decidedly hateful. Personally, I don’t believe there’s a faction, and I don’t believe there’s a conspiracy. I believe there are individuals, some of whom deserve to be evicted from the party they owe their careers to.

    I believe that Cunliffe should retain the leadership of the party, though resigning and reapplying for his job after such a poor election result is actually a healthy step. He really does need to seek a new mandate.

    If he wins he’s in for another three years of vicious, often nakedly dishonest (in the vein of helping a wifebeater who then gives labour a $100,000 donation that doesn’t exist) attacks by National, aided and abetted by MSM. The only way to avoid that fate would be if he was supported by the media or if he had a Muldoon/Clark type personality. So basically, he can’t avoid that fate. Neither could Robertson. I have to respect these guys for putting their hands up for one of the country’s shittiest jobs.

    Back to Grant. New Zealand is a grievously divided country. We need guys like him around to help bring us together – he’s a conciliatory, broad church kind of leader with a deep, genuine sense of empathy. He has made the Wellington Central electorate his own because he’s competent and he impresses the fuck out of people he meets. I certainly believe that identity politics has been a three-plus decade blunder, supported by people who somehow manage to be simultaneously triumphalist and dangerously insecure. Grant supports gay issues, but in no way are his politics narrow, sectional or self-absorbed. If anything, I see him as old school left.

    • Karen 11.1

      Well said Vaughan.
      I don’t see Grant as the enemy of the left, I just do not think he is experienced enough to be the leader of the Labour Party yet.
      I agree that whoever gets in will be subject to unrelenting, biased attacks in the MSM, and I am surprised Grant wants to put himself through that.
      Nor would I wouldn’t have blamed David for giving up – but I am glad he hasn’t.

      • phillip ure 11.1.1

        and the bottom line i have noticed..

        ..from doing commentaries on questiontime..

        ..is that robertson is not able to perform in parliament..

        ..for yrs i have watched various national party entities just wave him away..

        ..whereas when cunnliffe stands up..

        ..you can hear a cracking sound as nattys stiffen their spines..

        ..a reinvigorated left and centre..(as in fix poverty and look after the middle class..i.e. policies that will get the missing million out to the voting booths..and heads-up!..raising the pension age isn’t one of them..

        ..what is so complicated/difficult about that..?..)

        ..this re-focused labour..led by cunnliffe..

        ..is what terrifies the right the most..

        ..this is why the concerted attack on him by corporate-media..and the abc’ers..

        ..is so torrid/fervent..

        ..and this is why they must be ignored..

        ..it is all fucken spin..

        ..corporate media and the right..working in concert..

        ..(i’ll say it for cunnliffe)..’fuck them..!..eh..?..’)

        • Vaughan Little

          I can go along with most of what you say. Except that word “centre”.

          Appealing to the middle. Fuck that, we’re left.

          Like Steve Jobs said, don’t worry about giving people what they want, cos by the time you’ve figured out what people want and put it on the market, they’ve moved on. You have to figure out what people want before they know they want it. That’s actually leadership.

          We have to be sensitive to the people we’re seeking the privilege of governing, but honestly, we’re the ones who are thinking policy and politics 24/7. We have to do the hard graft of figuring out what policy best suits the country, and then take it to the poeple and communicate our vision to them in a responsive, two-way process.

          Simply put, it’s our job to attract the centre leftwards. In a dialectical process.

          • phillip ure

            i included ‘centre’ because it has become such a loaded word..

            ..with this battle for labours’ soul being depicted as left vs. centre..

            ..where in fact it is progressive vs. neo-liberal/right..

            ..and labour have to focus on their message to that real ‘centre’..

            ..that progressive policies designed to see off poverty etc..

            ..will also be good for them..

            ..too my mind..it’s not difficult to do..

            ..the scare-tactics that will come from the right..

            ..must be countered/seen off..

  11. newsense 12

    Only just watched that post caucus video, Far out.

    Shearer breaks ranks to talk and causes part of this feeding frenzy and then swans over to New York, plays the outsider and says today ‘oh’ it’s too distracting this leadership talk. I really just wanted to help review what went wrong. Stunning irony.


    None of the candidates have acknowledged the party members and what they want. “I can unify the party, I can beat Steve Joyce in the house, I was the former leader…”

    the failures to achieve are all over the place and none of this is “secure or stable”.

    • newsense 12.1

      Watched that Q and A.

      Robertson supporter:

      “I am Labour”

      We are a broad church, but I am Labour. Coyle is very unimpressive.

      Hipkins: Very impressive. It will be interesting to see where he and Parker go.

      If the message Hipkins put forward today came from his senior colleagues then Labour would look like a professional government ready party.

      I want to see a room where Robert Reid and Hipkins are in the room and both have got their obvious skills and guns turned on Key and National.

      Coyle? Seems poisonous to me. As Robert Reid pointed out criticised the party during an election campaign from the position as its representative on television. Unimpressive.

      Reid is right, the liberals and those in working poverty need to find a way to unite. Also like many liberals- just because you grew up in poverty in a much kinder era doesn’t mean you understand what is like there now.

      • phillip ure 12.1.1

        reid is like a breath of fresh air..

        ..showing up the concerted bullshit/spin for what it is..

        ..and yep..!..coyle is hideous..a grotesque..

        ..as if we needed yet another josie pagani..

      • Vaughan Little 12.1.2

        I personally hate liberalism. But have found it easy to work with liberals in Labour. To paraphrase Stanley Hauerwas, the key to building friendship is to find meaningful work to do together. Labour represents nothing if not an opportunity to do meaningful work – to do good for the country, and especially its most vulnerable.

        To be honest, I haven’t always found it in myself to refrain from bitching at liberals and their ideological excesses on facebook. I’m not proud of that…

  12. b waghorn 13

    If I was to join the labour party with the intention of voting in the upcoming race how would a new comer filter out the bs and learn the the pro’s Cons of the contenders.

    • newsense 13.1

      same way you did at the general election. Same way you usually judge people and their intentions. I’m sure there will be a lot of information put forward in the campaign.

  13. newsense 14

    Is a purge necessary?

    Who would go if either side won?

    Several Cunliffe supporters have already lost list seats due to the election result, I believe.

  14. b waghorn 15

    @newsense mallard would be my choice its time he went the way of Tau Henare

  15. Anne 16

    Here are the just released details of the Labour Party Review. The two people conducting the review will be announced this coming week. It is proposed to have it largely completed and reported on by December.

    The review of the 2014 campaign will include reporting on

    • party and electorate vote variance;

    • electorate and hub performance, including enrolment, persuasion and turnout;

    • the targeting approach;

    • list and electorate candidate selection and performance

    • Maori and sector strategies;

    • volunteer management and activist training;

    • campaign finance – income, expenditure, cost-effectiveness;

    • digital campaign;

    • messaging formulation and communication of policy and campaign messages (including the “Vote Positive” brand);

    • performance in and relationship with the media;

    • party and Caucus organisation;

    • leadership and management of the campaign;

    • relationships with other parties and

    • any other significant matters which are identified in the course of consultation.


    • Karen 16.1

      Looks comprehensive. Result will depend somewhat on the two people conducting the review and who they take submissions from, but I am cautiously hopeful.

      • Anne 16.1.1

        My sentiments too Karen.
        Just as important is: who will they take submissions from? This, in itself, will give a clue as to how serious they take the review and whether they are conducting it in an objective/inclusive way. For example: if they choose well known Labour members/commentators like Josie Pagani, Deborah Mahuta-Coyle and even Mike Williams, then I will have my doubts as to the authenticity of the review.

    • lurgee 16.2

      I think Shearer is quite right to say the leadership contest should have waited until after the review.

    • lprent 16.3

      Looks like an adequate frame of reference.

      * They should also have a look at the delays in finalising policy that were a problem with timing releases.

      They often came at awkward times because a policy that was expected would suddenly get bumped. This was apparent in that often the policy would be just a press release and the all important detail didn’t get released until days later. It was also quite evident that there were variants between what people were talking about and the later details.

      All signs about late detailing and too many hands involved very late in the process. Policies need to be settled a week or weeks ahead and then have the complete package at release. Otherwise National exploits the holes in MPs understandings

      * The campaign was always susceptible to a late interruption because it was designed to come to culmination. It got disrupted by outside events, just as it has been in at least 3 of the last 5 elections.

      * Campaigns are 3 years long. Perhaps Labour should start operating as if they are. What you do in the first two years is just as important as the final year especially in terms of getting working teams and systems. That didn’t happen the last term or in the previous one.

  16. Colonial Viper 17

    Clare and the Viper

    Who said peak cray cray ended with the election.


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