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Open mike 29/03/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 29th, 2012 - 76 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…

76 comments on “Open mike 29/03/2012 ”

  1. So who is Simon Lusk?

    He came to attention last year because he seemed to be a go to person for potential national Party MPs wanting to sow up candidacy campaigns.  He was also thought to have had a major involvement in National’s hostile takeover of the ACT party.

    This time he is said to be the go between person whereby the private email sent by Michelle Boag to Judith Collins found its way to the Herald on Sunday.

    He is something of a retiring person and does not seem to enjoy public disclosure.

    He has a public website, or at least did have one.  Remarkably yesterday this website became password protected.

    But thanks to the miracle that is Google cache the world can still enjoy the site that is simonlusk.com.

    Interestingly the cached version says that “[t]his site has been established as Simon wishes to remove any chance that his anonymity becomes the focus of a campaign.”

    It looks like his desire to remove this chance has now dimmed.

    • Carol 1.1

      So, if it was the ACC case worker who leaked the letter to the Herald, would Lusk be likely to have been involved in that?

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/6655745/ACC-worker-re-viewed-leaked-Smith-letter

      • mickysavage 1.1.1

        Thanks Carol

        Looks like a strategic leak from a certain Minister’s office to try and transfer the blame!

        The primary issue IMHO is who leaked the Boag email.  My reading of the original Herald article is that it was based solely on the email and the Smith/Pullar correspondence were subsequently leaked.  They may have occurred at the same time but the Boag email was the one that caused the immediate damage.

        The other burning question is did the Minister’s office also access the file containing the letter and if so on what date? 

        • mickysavage 1.1.1.1

          Reading it further the initial Fisher article in the Herald was published on March 18 and no doubt written before.  The letter Pullar is referring to is important but not, I think, the document that caused the controversy to form.

          • Pete George 1.1.1.1.1

            @Hilary_Barry
            “Justice Minister Judith Collins says she’s taking defamation proceedings against two Labour MP’s and a news organisation. ”

            No word of any lawyer being a target there.

            • Pascal's bookie 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Not sure what you are trying to say there Pete, but how does a defamation suit fit into your scheme.

              A good thing, or a bad thing?

              Or is it contextual?

              If contextual, what do you think about this particular case.

              Be as detailed as you like.

            • mickysavage 1.1.1.1.1.2

              Feel free Petey to point out any comment of mine where I have said something that should not be part of the robust discussion that should occur about this country’s politics.
               
              Go on, I dare you.

            • Frida 1.1.1.1.1.3

              Typical reaction of a NACT bully. When the pressure comes on, squeal to the Police or run and consult a lawyer.
              Nothing to worry about here as far as I can see Mickey (I’m a lawyer too). Defamation wouldn’t stick – too many defences available here 🙂

              Crusher is just trying to shut down debate because she is quaking in her boots as her time is up and her leadership aspirations thwarted

        • Carol 1.1.1.2

          Thanks, Micky. Successful spin though if it blurs the distinction between the 2 emails.

    • I presume you’ve read this MS?

      You note the total lack of evidence put up by Trevor. It is his normal just invent a story, which for somebizarre reasons the media think has some credibility.

      The exchange in the House yesterday was pretty clear cut:

      Hon Trevor Mallard: Did she or any of her staff discuss the contents of the Boag email with Simon Lusk?

      Hon JUDITH COLLINS: No.

      Hon Trevor Mallard: Did she or any of her staff discuss the systemic privacy issues that Boag and Pullar raised with her with Simon Lusk?

      Hon JUDITH COLLINS: No.

      Trevor has a fascination with Simon, but the fascination doesn’t extend to accuracy. He stated on numerous occasions last year that Simon Lusk worked for Steven Joyce and on his orders orchestrated the ACT coup.

      It is hard to describe how off the planet this is. All I can say is if you do not believe me, just go up to any National MP and ask them “Does Simon Lusk work for Steven Joyce” and around five minutes later you’ll get a response once they have picked themselves up from the floor, and stopped laughing.

      Trevor Mallard is to accuracy what Charlie Sheen is to celibacy.

      http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2012/03/trevors_lusk_fixation.html

      Do you have a Lusk lust too?

      • mickysavage 1.2.1

        No Petey I used to read Kiwiblog occasionally but I worked out I have better things to do with my time.

        And no I have never met Mr Lusk but it is fascinating how often his name pops up.  And National does appear to be in utter turmoil right now and the Boag email may mean the end of someone’s Prime Ministerial ambitions if not their Cabinet Career.

        Your trying to suggest that investigating this issue is dirty politics but if the allegations are correct and a Minister has breached the rights of privacy of two people for political advantage then I suggest you should be more upset about this.

        Time will tell …

        • Pete George 1.2.1.1

          MS, do you have any evidence at all that Lusk is involved? Or are you just joining the throwing of any old mud to see if something might stick?

          If he’s not involved do you care that he’s been dragged into this? Would that just be collateral damage as a part of the game?

          This sort of tactic may bite you on the bum sometime. I presume you have a reputation and business interests you’d prefer weren’t used as someone else’s fodder for the fight, just another political pawn and too bad about any damage.

          I don’t know Lusk and haven’t had any connection with him at all. I’m just wondering what lengths political operators will go to to pursue their power, and how little they care about who they might trample on along the weay.

          • Pascal's bookie 1.2.1.1.1

            Pete, asking questions and making accusations is how you find things out. Do you think a govt is just going to tell everyone what’s going on all by themselves?

            Are you aware of what type of politics lusk specialises in?
            \

            He wrote a book on it. He sells his sevices.

            Would he be one of the heavies you think should get the heave-ho?

            • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.1.1.1

              I’m sure PG is very well versed in Lusk’s style of politics. The distraction, deflection and reframing of the dirty little tale on a new target for instance, which he is trying to do here to Mallard.

            • Pete George 1.2.1.1.1.2

              asking questions and making accusations is how you find things out.

              Questions and accusations based on facts – ok.

              But if accusations are fishing without any facts, just on the hope of getting a hit, then that’s very poor politics. Don’t you think?

              • Colonial Viper

                How do you find out facts without first fishing Petey? Maybe National will be kind enough to summarise all of them in a press release for us to save everyone the trouble?

                At least you are playing the part of a good little sycophant competently.

                • How do you find out facts without first fishing Petey?

                  Better government and party transparency.

                  And that would be helped by ditching the wild trample on many to try and hit a few approach.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    Should we just wait quietly for this better transparency?

                    And what exactly do you mean? It’s pretty vague.

                    Tie it to this case.

                    Who should be doing what?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Hmmm, one example of transparency that occurs to me is that Peter Dunne could have explicitly explained to the electorate he was in favour of asset sales before the election. Is that the sort of thing you mean, Pete?

      • mikesh 1.2.2

        Perhaps Ms Collins should have used a placard with the letters NO printed on it, like Winston did once.

  2. No doubt the frenzy will continue today. I suggested yesterday that it’s not nice to see attack politics in full fury, and got some expected criticism.

    Do we just shrug our shoulders and say it’s just the way it is? I’m in agreement to an extent with Redlogix:

    I actually agree with your basic sentiment PG. This kind of politics doesn’t appeal anymore to me than it does you.

    It is one of the least appealing things about our politics to the wider public. Many don’t see wins and losses, just a bunch of tossers.
    I don’t agree that it’s just brought about because of National’s faults. It’s due to a longstanding culture of crap politics from across the House. All MPs and parties should play a part in cleaning up their acts. And political blogs could lead the way too, if they chose to ditch the bitter war and find a better way.

    Holding to account, or heaves of destruction?

    • ropata 2.1

      A good scandal is very healthy for politics. Like sunlight it’s a disinfectant against the festering slime of political spin and deception. It should make insiders think twice about abusing their power. It is the most honest form of politics there is. Far better then sweeping things under the carpet and pretending that everything is OK.

      • aerobubble 2.1.1

        Scandal are likely when the National backbenchers know how close they came to losing, and know that annoying everyone in society somehow leads to electoral oblivion. This is all about positioning, and yes cleaning house, for the new leader to stand up and show themselves. i.e. going into the next election with a dagger in Keys back, and lollies for the new leadership team members. Ask Goff, he knows all about the theory, and similar practices.

    • I agree Petey.  For instance calling Greens racist and communist supporters when there is no evidence whatsoever is really unappealing politics.  And denigrating the Finnish people is pretty crass.

      Oh wait, was that you who did that

      What is that word starting with “h”? 

      • Pete George 2.2.1

        You might have a point if you didn’t distort and rephrase what I said so much. But what you are doing is ignorant or dishonest. That’s not very appealing, is it.

        And you must have forgotten already, I denigrated Brownlee’s Finnish crassness.

        What is that word starting with “h”?

        Honesty? Something you seem to struggle with.

        • Colonial Viper 2.2.1.1

          Oh is that a whore in the whore house protesting her obvious virginity, Mr George.

    • Pascal's bookie 2.3

      Pete, how are the ‘political heavies’ to be ‘given the heave ho’?

      How, exactly, are you asking that they be held to account and given the ‘heave ho’ so that you can claim democracy back?

      Does that not require that some political actors point out that their behaviour is unacceptable, and that they should be held to account for it?

    • Colonial Viper 2.4

      Is PG still trying to position himself as being the most fair minded and civil of them all?

      Dude we’ve already seen you with your pants down around your ankles, why keep trying to pretend that we haven’t?

    • Frida 2.5

      Pete, as someone pointed out to you yesterday, if the Toxic Right didn’t engage in such nasty tactics (sending in an ex-Nat Party President to meet with Senior ACC managers on behalf of a claimant – come ON! as if the ordinary NZer can do this!) then the Opposition wouldn’t need to engage in such politics would it?

      What do you suggest, that the Opposition just sit back and take this kind of insidious, fishy behaviour and let it go in the interests of “playing nice”? How is that good for NZ and ordinary NZers?

      Get real, man. You live in a fantasy world.

      • Bored 2.5.1

        Beatifully put Frida. I suggested to Vicky a day ago that she not complain we were hard on PiG, the issue is that his political theories and their practical application hurts real people. Give him some pain back I reckon.

  3. DH 3

    The beancounters have been maintaining their perfect record…

    Treasury ‘asleep at the wheel’

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10795088

    Incompetent prats.

  4. Tc 4

    I see that TVNZ have pulled up Hosking over his conflict of interest in Skycity with Hosking declaring he didn’t bother as he only works part time.
    Ellis may be gone but the arrogance culture is well entrenched and they trod a well beaten path by using another talkback rantmeister as their current affairs host.

    Also the well trod path of UF troll Petey is busy defending his paymasters.

  5. Sorry guys, Have to link whore today. This is huge!

    It’s not so much that John Key is a bad liar, he just doesn’t give a fuck about being found out.

    He once said that the instruments now causing the destruction of the entire financial world were developed after he left banking. Today I can reveal this to be untrue.

    In fact I caught John Key in another whopper! And no I will never suicide myself. LoL

    http://aotearoaawiderperspective.wordpress.com/2012/03/29/coming-later-today-john-key-more-lies-bankers-trust-and-credit-default-swaps-or-did-john-key-help-birth-the-instrument-of-financial-mass-destruction/
     

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      I’m pretty sure that Blythe Masters, a young star at JPM, was most fully responsible for the creation and initial use of credit default swaps.

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2008/sep/20/wallstreet.banking

      • muzza 5.1.1

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/sunday-star-times/features/249633/Who-is-John-Key

        “Forms of credit default swaps had been in existence from at least the early 1990s,[48] with early trades carried out by Bankers Trust in 1991”

        • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1

          http://wallstreetandtech.com/top-innovators/2011/Blythe-Masters

          According to the plan, a third party would assume the risk of the debt going bad and in exchange would receive regular payments from the bank — similar to insurance premiums. JP Morgan would then be able to remove the risk from its books and free up its capital reserves. The concept had circulated around the Street for a couple of years, but JP Morgan was the first bank to heavily bet on these new instruments.

          I don’t disagree that Bankers Trust may have used early versions of CDS, but their evolution into the highly leveraged, widely speculated on forms which led to the collapse of the MBS market in 07/08, was driven by Blythe Masters and her team at JPM.

          Frankly, Key is simply not smart enough nor mathematical enough to have played a big role in the development of innovative new derivatives. That’s what they hire physics quants from Caltech for.

          • muzza 5.1.1.1.1

            “Frankly, Key is simply not smart enough nor mathematical enough to have played a big role in the development of innovative new derivatives. That’s what they hire physics quants from Caltech for.” – Agreed!

            The point is that many people still underestimate Key, and what he does or does not know!

            He knows!

          • travellerev 5.1.1.1.2

            CV,

            The issue is not when CDS were used but how they came to be in existence and what they were intended for all along and why John Key tells us that the destructive products were developed after he left banking when they clearly were not. What that tells us is that John Key wants to distance himself from banking and what he did in his banking past.

            Bankers Trust bank in itself is a fraudulent set up in the first place.
             

          • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.1.3

            Frankly, Key is simply not smart enough nor mathematical enough to have played a big role in the development of innovative new derivatives.

            Key’s a “Yes man” middle manager. His owners tell him what they want him to do and he does it. He doesn’t need to think about what he’s doing, merely organising getting it done.

            • travellerev 5.1.1.1.3.1

              John Key is not a middle manager. He was head of Merrill Lynch’s department for Bonds and Derivatives Europe and Foreign Exchange Globally in the most important period in banking since they caused the Great depression but he does know on which side his bread is buttered and wants to play with the big boys.

              Here is part 1 of my series on John Key, Credit default swaps and more lies.

              • Draco T Bastard

                He was head of Merrill Lynch’s department for Bonds and Derivatives Europe and Foreign Exchange Globally…

                Yep, and that makes him a middle manager as there will be people above him although I was thinking more along the lines of the mindset – he does what he’s told using the people he’s in charge of.

                • Colonial Viper

                  I disagree with Key’s classification as a “middle manager”, if only for the fact it downplays too much his position and repute in the organisation.

                  In the mafia set up Key was clearly more than a ‘soldier’. He’d also done his time as a ‘lieutenant’. Looks to me like he was definitely a ‘capo’ (captain). A relatively senior one at that. Does that mean he was in the topmost echelon? Probably not quite. He was a divisional head, but not on the chief executive team back at Head Office (but surely riding a fast track there, and no doubt was on a first name basis with all of them).

                  So although technically correct, labelling Key a “middle manager” doesn’t describe the nuances of how far up the ladder he really was.

                  BTW he probably took up the job as NZ PM with the explicit backing and pre-approval of the senior team at Merill Lynch.

  6. BLiP 6

    Finally relented and gave in to my crossword addiction and bought a New Zealand Fox News Herald yesterday for the first time in months . . . things must be tight over there: how long has the business section been folded into Section B ?

  7. aerobubble 7

    Taupo is super volcano. So no worries there, if we release pressure by fracking sub-strata rock and open fissures for high pressure water and gas to depressurize in surrounding containment strata. A small earthquake effect caused by an explosion or two would not block lava and start a lava bottleneck. No. We’re not like the moratorium on the America plains where the most dangerous hazard is a cowboy company pumping nasty chemicals into ancient aquifers, we have volcanos, have earthquakes and a legislator that knows all when it knows nothing.

    • Bored 7.1

      There is a wonderful scene in Frackingland (a doco) in which the fracking company declare their practices to be safe. The anti fracking party fronts up at the hearing with water from a fracked well and challenges the fracking advocate to drink it..of course he wont.

      That in a nutshell is the problem: industry can mobilise talking heads and never be forced to taste the bitter fruit of their deeds. We must make them do so.

      • aerobubble 7.1.1

        Farmers are going to find, maybe in a few years, maybe over decades time, hydrocarbons finding their way into water sources. I mean oil and gas were ‘trapped’ by the strata above them, when we break them and do not pump all the resource out, that remaining resource will rise to the water table. So what fracking does, is accelerate the pollution of the world, from the plastic ocean to the deepest well, our hippy boomer generation has destroyed the world for future generations.

  8. Campbell Larsen 8

    The (Dis)honourable Peter Dunne aka ‘the hair’ betrays students …yet another illustration of the fact that UF doesn’t give a f**k about the people or future of New Zealand.

    Stealth claims fly during student loan debate

    Labour MPs claimed that a previously unnoticed clause was effectively and retrospectively scrapping interest free loans.

  9. KATY 9

    It would seem that the breaks are being applied to the governments asset sales program. courtesy of the Waitangi Tribunal.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/6655601/Water-ownership-hearing-threatens-asset-sales

    Looks as if the flood gates are opening even further, and it’s not not a good time to be on board the national boat with a captain that’s on holiday a first mate, who upsets the foreigners along with a crew that can’t divert or plug leaks.

  10. Te Reo Putake 10

    An excellent decision in Australia regarding urine sampling for drug use. In summary, it has been decided that urine tests are not precise enough to determine exactly when dope has been smoked, so can’t be relied on to prove a worker is under the influence while at work.
     
    ”A person may be found to have breached the policy even though their actions were taken in their own time and in no way affect their capacity to do their job safely,” he said. Because of this, where oral fluid testing was available, he said, the use of urine testing by the applicant would be ”unjust and unreasonable”.

     
     
     

  11. dans 11

    I thought I was reasonably IT literate, but was surprised today to hear that Ms Pullar was able to check her email of months previously to see who had opened her file, and at what time. Can someone explain.

    • deuto 11.1

      Hi dans

      There is some discussion on this in the comments on the Unaswered questions post. Sorry, I can’t seem to link to the particular ones but you might like to look at that post and its comments.

  12. Since we are in the season to call for inquiries, I would like to suggest that an inquiry be held in the impartiality of Herr Doktor Lockwood Smith.
    In spite of the evidence that Collins spoke about the ACC emails on Radio Live this morning, Lockwood ruled that Collins could hide behind her refusal to answer questions on the grounds that it was subject to Privacy Commissioner investigation and was therefore not in the public interest.
    The inquiry was announced yesterday (NZHerald, Fairfax,) and Lockwood has the effrontery to say it was not “outrageous” the Collins was wanted to hide behind the investigation.
     
    Does that make Radio Live a higher forum than the House of Parliament for the minister to address her accountability. That in itself is outrageous!

  13. Colonial Viper 13

    China steals details of widely used encryption standard, accused of massive theft from US companies and govt organisations

    http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=24328

    China successfully used the information to hack into Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT), a top U.S. defense contractor. It is thought that China’s remarkable progress in stealth fighter technology has been fueled by stolen U.S. Department of Defense Secrets..

    Whether the Chinese government is perpetrating these attacks first hand, sponsoring third parties to conduct them, or merely condoning corporate interests to conduct them is almost as hazy as the sketchy financial ties the Chinese government holds to many of its private sector business (to be fair such allegations have increasingly been raised about the U.S. gov’t).

  14. Te Reo Putake 14

    POAL have stuffed up, big time. The Employment Court has given its reasons for the granting of the injunctions earlier this week and they are scathing of the Port’s strategy. The court finds that there is a ‘seriously arguable case’ that POAL has undermined the bargaining since the beginning. 
     
    MUNZ are pretty restrained in their press release, but Gibson, Pearson and their overpaid advisors will be spewing about now:
     
     
     
     
    The Maritime Union of New Zealand welcomes the Employment Courts written reasons, released today, for Tuesday’s granting of an injunction stopping the Ports of Auckland contracting out.
     
     
     
    The Court found there is a ‘seriously arguable case’ that the Ports of Auckland has breached the Employment Relations Act and Undermined the Collective Bargaining. It also found it likely other aspects of the Act have been breached.
     
     
     
    It was on this basis that the court issued the injunction.
     
     
     
    “This decision reiterates the fact that the Port Board is not able to manage the port in the manner required by law,” said Maritime Union President Garry Parsloe.
     
     
     
    “The crime here is the workers at the port have suffered five weeks without pay because their legal right to bargain was undermined. The businesses and people of Auckland have suffered severe losses and the Council has lost money through both lost revenue and the huge costs the port company has incurred attempting to implement these ill thought out plans.”
     
     
     
    “It is time for this to stop now. We are ready to negotiate a collective agreement. We want to return to work and we want this attack on our workforce to stop.”
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    • Pascal's bookie 14.1

      No no. It’s safe to assume that POAL has the bestest lawyers ever spawned, and that they have a bulklet proof case that has followed the letter of the law. This activist judge just doesn’t realise that MUNZ has overplayed its hand and totally lost the PR battle.

  15. Pascal's bookie 15

    Anyone got a link to that story where Key was explaining the extent of his own relationship with Pullar?

    From memory he was saying she was around Nat party circles, that he’d met her, and that she’d mentioned her problems with acc.

    Hope he wasn’t being less than transparent.

    http://www.facebook.com/closeup

    • Not our dear leader! He who makes the sun to shine and the rain to come in it’s season.
      If he was then it wasn’t his fault…
      – “I was not at the meeting”
      – “I’ve had no reports on that”
      – “This matter is before….the police, the courts, the commissioner”
      – “I have no recollection of…..knowing Ms. Pullar, opposing the Springbok Tour, speculating on my own country’s currency or selling crap financial products…Oh, I was not in Berlin in ’45”

    • ianmac 15.2

      That had a brief mention on TV 3 News. The link might have been several years ago. However you would think that Mr Key might have declared an interest if indeed there was more than casual conversations.

  16. bad12 16

    Indeed,the Auckland Wharfies have recieved due vindication from the Employment Court,unfortunately we could place a large sum of our scarce coinage upon the Auckland ports management paying scant regard to the decision from the Employment Court and carrying right on planning to contract out the employment of the unionized Wharfies of Auckland and expect to win the bet,

    This dispute on a political level is a perfect picture of the huge disconnect between the average working head and the political leadership,both locally and nationally,

    We will ask the question that has already been asked of Labour leader David Shearer as this attempt to circumvent the rights of workers to collectively bargain with their employers reached such an ugly empasse,

    The real question tho, and a more pertinent one in light of the Employment Courts decision,has to ask of Auckland Mayor Len Brown,(a supposed lefty0,is He so powerless as to have been forced to sit idly by as the workers in the city He presides over have been done over by a company owned by that city,or did He just chose to park up on the couch and let it happen,

    Within that Ports of Auckland industrial dispute lies the disconnect,the widening chasm,between the shop floor left,the cloth cap so to speak and the Beamer riding hierarchy of the Lefts Leadership,such Leaders should look to themselves and fix it fast or move on,(and we aint talking here about having the posteriors carted about in the Beamers,a rides a ride)…

  17. Brokenback 17

    Makes a mockery out of “If you can’t do the time , don’t do the crime”

    “Sir” Doug Graham gets 300 hours community work, $100k fine in Lombard sentencing.Bill Jefferies , ex Minister of Justice received the same fine & 400 hours of community work[he showed no remorse!].
    Lawrie Bryant & Michael Reeves , co-defendants received similar sentences.

    Lombard Finance went into receivership in April 2008, owing approximately $127 million to about 4,400 investors.

    Lets do the sums : $127,000,000 less $400,000 = $126,600,000

    divided by 1400 hours [combined sentence] = $90,428/hour

    Can’t see this discouraging the next round of Corporate thieves.
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU1203/S01057/doug-graham-gets-300-hrs-community-work-100k-lombard-fine.htm

  18. Brokenback 18

    Solid Energy:
    One of the proposed SOE’s up for “sale’.
    The SOE has rights to huge deposits of Lignite/Brown Coal in Southland which they have been planning to exploit and covert to Diesel .
    Interesting article below brings into focus the real cost to you & me of the ‘sale’ & this plan to make synfuel. Under National’s ETS [ one of the first things they passed under urgency in 2009] the “Carbon Tax” due on such a venture would be subsidised to the tune of $275 Million /year by the government/taxpayers!!!!!!!!
    An unfortunate coincidence??
    Not likely , wake up folks we are being systematically and cynically rorted by smiling John and his thieving cohorts.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU1012/S00279/solid-energys-lignite-should-remain-in-the-ground-pce.htm

  19. Jackal 19

    Phil Heatley – Asshole of the Week

    Clearly there’s a lot more riding on the inquiry than just the way National hands out permits like lollies and how the oil and gas industry goes about fracking New Zealand. There’s the question of safety and whether fracking should be occurring at all?

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    3 days ago
  • Five Country Ministerial Communiqué
    We, the Home Affairs, Interior, Security and Immigration Ministers of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States of America (the ‘Five Countries’) met via video conference on 7/8 April 2021, just over a year after the outbreak of the COVID-19 global pandemic. Guided by our shared ...
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    4 days ago
  • Inspiring creativity through cultural installations and events
    Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni has today announced the opening of the first round of Ngā Puninga Toi ā-Ahurea me ngā Kaupapa Cultural Installations and Events. “Creating jobs and helping the arts sector rebuild and recover continues to be a key part of the Government’s COVID-19 response,” Carmel ...
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    4 days ago
  • Drug-testing law to be made permanent
    Interim legislation that is already proving to keep people safer from drugs will be made permanent, Health Minister Andrew Little says. Research by Victoria University, on behalf of the Ministry of Health, shows that the Government’s decision in December to make it legal for drug-checking services to operate at festivals ...
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    4 days ago
  • Better rules proposed for freedom camping
    Public consultation launched on ways to improve behaviour and reduce damage Tighter rules proposed for either camping vehicles or camping locations Increased penalties proposed, such as $1,000 fines or vehicle confiscation Rental companies may be required to collect fines from campers who hire vehicles Public feedback is sought on proposals ...
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    4 days ago
  • Government backs Air New Zealand as Trans-Tasman bubble opens
    The Government is continuing to support Air New Zealand while aviation markets stabilise and the world moves towards more normal border operations. The Crown loan facility made available to Air New Zealand in March 2020 has been extended to a debt facility of up to $1.5 billion (an additional $600 ...
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    4 days ago
  • Building gifted for new community hub in Richmond red zone
    Christchurch’s Richmond suburb will soon have a new community hub, following the gifting of a red-zoned property by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) to the Richmond Community Gardens Trust. The Minister for Land Information, Damien O’Connor said that LINZ, on behalf of the Crown, will gift a Vogel Street house ...
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    5 days ago
  • Pacific languages funding reopens
      Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says the reopening of the Ministry for Pacific Peoples’ (MPP) Languages Funding in 2021 will make sure there is a future for Pacific languages. “Language is the key to the wellbeing for Pacific people. It affirms our identity as Pasifika and ...
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    5 days ago
  • ERANZ speech April 2021
    It is a pleasure to be here tonight.  Thank you Cameron for the introduction and thank you for ERANZ for also hosting this event. Last week in fact, we had one of the largest gatherings in our sector, Downstream 2021. I have heard from my officials that the discussion on ...
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    5 days ago
  • Strengthening Māori knowledge in science and innovation
    Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods has today announced the 16 projects that will together get $3.9 million through the 2021 round of Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund, further strengthening the Government’s commitment to Māori knowledge in science and innovation.  “We received 78 proposals - the highest ...
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    5 days ago
  • Government delivers next phase of climate action
    The Government is delivering on a key election commitment to tackle climate change, by banning new low and medium temperature coal-fired boilers and partnering with the private sector to help it transition away from fossil fuels. This is the first major announcement to follow the release of the Climate Commission’s ...
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    5 days ago
  • Continued investment in Central Otago schools supports roll growth
    Six projects, collectively valued at over $70 million are delivering new schools, classrooms and refurbished buildings across Central Otago and are helping to ease the pressure of growing rolls in the area, says Education Minister Chris Hipkins. The National Education Growth Plan is making sure that sufficient capacity in the ...
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    5 days ago
  • Two more Christchurch schools complete
    Two more schools are now complete as part of the Christchurch Schools Rebuild Programme, with work about to get under way on another, says Education Minister Chris Hipkins. Te Ara Koropiko – West Spreydon School will welcome students to their new buildings for the start of Term 2. The newly ...
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    5 days ago
  • Independent experts to advise Government on post-vaccination future
    The Government is acting to ensure decisions on responding to the next phase of the COVID-19 pandemic are informed by the best available scientific evidence and strategic public health advice. “New Zealand has worked towards an elimination strategy which has been successful in keeping our people safe and our economy ...
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    5 days ago
  • Supporting Māori success with Ngārimu Awards
    Six Māori scholars have been awarded Ngārimu VC and the 28th (Māori) Battalion Memorial scholarships for 2021, Associate Education Minister and Ngārimu Board Chair, Kelvin Davis announced today. The prestigious Manakura Award was also presented for the first time since 2018. “These awards are a tribute to the heroes of the 28th ...
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    6 days ago
  • Global partnerships propel space tech research
    New Zealand’s aerospace industry is getting a boost through the German Aerospace Centre (DLR), to grow the capability of the sector and potentially lead to joint space missions, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods has announced. 12 New Zealand organisations have been chosen to work with world-leading experts at ...
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    6 days ago
  • Government backs more initiatives to boost food and fibre workforce
    The Government is backing more initiatives to boost New Zealand’s food and fibre sector workforce, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced today. “The Government and the food and fibres sector have been working hard to fill critical workforce needs.  We've committed to getting 10,000 more Kiwis into the sector over the ...
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    6 days ago
  • Minister welcomes Bill to remove Subsequent Child Policy
    Minister for Social Development and Employment Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the Social Security (Subsequent Child Policy Removal) Amendment Bill in the House this evening. “Tonight’s first reading is another step on the way to removing excessive sanctions and obligations for people receiving a Main Benefit,” says ...
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    7 days ago
  • Mental Health Amendment Bill passes first reading
    The Government has taken a significant step towards delivering on its commitment to improve the legislation around mental health as recommended by He Ara Oranga – the report of the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction, Health Minister Andrew Little says. The Mental Health (Compulsory Assessment and Treatment) Amendment ...
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    7 days ago
  • Whenua Māori Rating Amendment Bill passes third reading
    Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta has welcomed the Local Government (Rating of Whenua Māori) Amendment Bill passing its third reading today. “After nearly 100 years of a system that was not fit for Māori and did not reflect the partnership we have come to expect between Māori and the Crown, ...
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    7 days ago
  • Trans-Tasman bubble to start 19 April
    New Zealand’s successful management of COVID means quarantine-free travel between New Zealand and Australia will start on Monday 19 April, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins confirmed the conditions for starting to open up quarantine free travel with Australia have ...
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    7 days ago
  • Ngāti Hinerangi Claims Settlement Bill passes Third Reading
    Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little welcomed ngā uri o Ngāti Hinerangi to Parliament today to witness the third reading of their Treaty settlement legislation, the Ngāti Hinerangi Claims Settlement Bill. “I want to acknowledge ngā uri o Ngāti Hinerangi and the Crown negotiations teams for working tirelessly ...
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    7 days ago
  • Independent group announced to advise on firearms matters
    Minister of Police Poto Williams has announced the members of the Ministers Arms Advisory Group, established to ensure balanced advice to Government on firearms that is independent of Police. “The Ministers Arms Advisory Group is an important part of delivering on the Government’s commitment to ensure we maintain the balance ...
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    7 days ago
  • Kiri Allan to take leave of absence
    Kiri Allan, Minister of Conservation and Emergency Management will undertake a leave of absence while she undergoes medical treatment for cervical cancer, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. “I consider Kiri not just a colleague, but a friend. This news has been devastating. But I also know that Kiri is ...
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    1 week ago
  • Excellent progress at new Waikeria prison build
    Excellent progress has been made at the new prison development at Waikeria, which will boost mental health services and improve rehabilitation opportunities for people in prison, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says. Kelvin Davis was onsite at the new build to meet with staff and see the construction first-hand, following a ...
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    1 week ago
  • Expert panel proposes criminal limits for drug driving
    To reduce the trauma of road crashes caused by drug impaired drivers, an Independent Expert Panel on Drug Driving has proposed criminal limits and blood infringement thresholds for 25 impairing drugs, Minister of Police Poto Williams and Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. The Land Transport (Drug Driving) Amendment Bill ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Covid-19 imgration powers to be extended
    Temporary COVID-19 immigration powers will be extended to May 2023, providing continued flexibility to support migrants, manage the border, and help industries facing labour shortages, Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi announced today. “Over the past year, we have had to make rapid decisions to vary visa conditions, extend expiry dates, and ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Covid-19 immigration powers to be extended
    Temporary COVID-19 immigration powers will be extended to May 2023, providing continued flexibility to support migrants, manage the border, and help industries facing labour shortages, Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi announced today. “Over the past year, we have had to make rapid decisions to vary visa conditions, extend expiry dates, and ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • More support for mums and whānau struggling with alcohol and other drugs
    The Government is expanding its Pregnancy and Parenting Programme so more women and whānau can access specialist support to minimise harm from alcohol and other drugs, Health Minister Andrew Little says. “We know these supports help improve wellbeing and have helped to reduce addiction, reduced risk for children, and helped ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Ahuwhenua Trophy Competition Field Day – Tātaiwhetū Trust at Tauarau Marae, Rūātoki
    *** Please check against delivery *** It’s an honour to be here in Rūātoki today, a rohe with such a proud and dynamic history of resilience, excellence and mana. Tūhoe moumou kai, moumou taonga, moumou tangata ki te pō. The Ahuwhenua Trophy competition is the legacy of a seed planted ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Crown accounts again better than forecast
    The economic recovery from COVID-19 continues to be reflected in the Government’s books, which are again better than expected. The Crown accounts for the eight months to the end of February 2021 showed both OBEGAL and the operating balance remain better than forecast in the Half Year Economic and Fiscal ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • FIFA Women’s World Cup to open in New Zealand
    Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson and Economic Development Minister Stuart Nash have welcomed confirmation New Zealand will host the opening ceremony and match, and one of the semi-finals, of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2023. Grant Robertson says matches will be held in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Dunedin, ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • 1 April changes raise incomes for 1.4 million New Zealanders
    Changes to the minimum wage, main benefit levels and superannuation rates that come into force today will raise the incomes for around 1.4 million New Zealanders. “This Government is committed to raising the incomes for all New Zealanders as part of laying the foundations for a better future,” Minister for ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • New Dunedin Hospital – Whakatuputupu approved for fast track consenting process
    The New Dunedin Hospital – Whakatuputupu has been approved for consideration under the fast track consenting legislation.  The decision by Environment Minister David Parker signifies the importance of the project to the health of the people of Otago-Southland and to the economy of the region.  “This project ticks all the ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Next steps for Auckland light rail
    Transport Minister Michael Wood is getting Auckland light rail back on track with the announcement of an establishment unit to progress this important city-shaping project and engage with Aucklanders. Michael Wood said the previous process didn’t involve Aucklanders enough.                       ...
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    2 weeks ago