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Owen Glenn

Written By: - Date published: 8:33 am, February 19th, 2008 - 64 comments
Categories: dpf, Media - Tags: ,

John Armstrong’s opinion is that:

It is inconceivable that Helen Clark would have blithely offered a wealthy donor to Labour Party coffers a seat at the Cabinet table… Anyone who knows what makes Clark tick knows she is far too clever and far too cautious ever to trap herself into making such promises of patronage.

He also correctly notes that Labour doesn’t need this right now, it’s an unnecessary distraction.

Elsewhere, Audrey Young seems to be struggling to find copy to fill both her column in the Herald and also her blog so has fallen back on her mate Fran’s tried and tested “cut and paste from Kiwiblog” strategy. I’m starting to wonder when The Herald will decide it’s better to just cut out the middleman.

As for the loan, David Farrar points out the discrepancy between Labour’s denials that it had received another loan from Glenn [he was being asked in the context of Glenn receiving a New year’s honour] and the fact that the interest-free component of the loan it did receive is legally classed as a donation.

Of course one of the hazards of Kiwiblog (aside from the association with what’s commonly regarded online as the cesspit of the rabid right) is its propensity for factual inaccuracy, particularly when it comes to the crucial details.

What Farrar, and thus Young, don’t tell their readers is that the law on donations has changed since the last election, and likely in a way that affects whether the interest should be counted or not. The Electoral Finance Act does indeed clarify the fact that interest is to count as a donation but prior to this recent legislation things weren’t as clear cut.

Perhaps it’s actually Audrey (if you’ll allow me to paraphrase her) who should be squirming over her link to National Party blogger, David Farrar.

64 comments on “Owen Glenn”

  1. r0b 1

    See also Glenn in his own words:


    He was reported to have said Miss Clark once told him he would be “a sitter’ for the post of transport minister.

    “I was not offered a cabinet position,’ Mr Glenn said in a statement today.
    “My comments on this matter were light-hearted and have been taken out of context.’

  2. AncientGeek 2

    I think it is still just the silly season.

    Bill English keeps wanting to find a scandal or an issue to keep the medias eye off their lack of policy. Sounds like a casual conversation being reported in the media as news. The nats must be pretty desperate if they are having to dredge this low.

    The money side. Well it seems to me that the tories are just upset that someone donated labour any money, after all it is the tories prerogative to get the big donations – right?. They are quibbling about donations made to the LP that are less than the ones made to national in total. A loan made for a specific purpose (and under the old act)

    DPF clearly has a date problem when it comes to legislation. Maybe he should read the old vs the new act’s. It is clear that he doesn’t realize that there simply aren’t that many differences. The differences are mainly in the duration and clearer reporting of finances. I get the impression that he is starting to believe his own propaganda against the EFA, and that is always a bad position for a commenter to get to.

    Mind you it is a hard read. I’m still looking for a clear legal link to the differences – cross-reading the acts made my head hurt. Just that DPF doesn’t appear to have actually made the effort.

    Audrey Young has been on my don’t bother reading list for a long time. Poorly researched articles, predictable levels of biles, and virtually no information of any consequence.

  3. good article well written ayb.
    Young can’t be DPF though because she does know shit from chocolate – i mean pottery from chocolate.
    this type of reportage though is indicative of the fact that the right will take EVERY EVERY opportunity to fling mud, nomatter how tenuous or imaginary the facts of the “story”.

  4. For the record in my first post on Glenn I referred to the Electoral Act 1993 – specifically s214F(b). It appeared then that the loan was made in 2006 (as he said post election) and that is what applied.

    But then when the statement by Mike Williams denying any donation came to light, I referred to the Electoral Finance Act as the issue for me now was whether Williams statement was correct, using the definitions in the law his party had championed and was now in force. And the fact Williams himself has said it would be included in their donation return suggests he was well aware it is legally a donation.

    For those interested in the difference between the two Acst, the EA 1993 says a donation “includes, where goods or services are provided to the party under a contract at 90% or less of their reasonable market value, the amount of the difference between the contractual price of the goods or services and the reasonable market value of those goods or services”

    Charging 0% interest instead of 8% to 20% interest is clearly at less than 90% of the market value, and I think there is little chance the Electoral Commission would view it differently.

    The EFA is more specific though, stating:

    “party donation means a donation (whether of money or of the equivalent of money or of goods or services or of a combination of those things) that is made to a party and includes where credit is provided to a party on terms and conditions substantially more favourable than the commercial terms and conditions prevailing at the time for the same or similar credit, the value to the party of those more favourable terms and conditions.”


  5. Ah, but DPF you deliberately blurred the distinction. I only picked it up because I was aware of the differences between the acts. At the very least you were communicating poorly; at the most you were deliberately misleading.

  6. odd to see so much uncharacteristic attention to detail suddenly going into DPF’s contributions.
    looks like HQ are still desperate to make this into something

  7. insider 7

    ANd now we find Mr Glenn has been promised Honorary Consul to Monaco…. The gift that just keeps on giving.

  8. Daveo 8

    Well we’ve found he’s claimed to have been offered honorary consul. He’s claimed a lot of things.

    But honestly though, I’d be surprised if he hadn’t been offered it. Honorary consul is an unpaid position (think David Schwartz) given to people who have connections and good standing in countries where you don’t have a formal diplomatic presence. Owen Glenn would be the perfect candidate for Monaco. Can you think of anyone more suited?

  9. anyone doing anything for free has to be a scandal in National’s eyes

  10. Steve Pierson 10

    insider. Honorary consul is really a job you put your hand up for, not one you get offered. You take it on at personal cost in time and money (MFAT only covers a fraction of your real expensies from the role). Sure, you someitiems get invited to some coktail parties but you are regarded as an amatuer by real diplomats, if not simply ignored entirely. As an insider, I would have thought you knew that.

    I seriously doubt Glenn was approached by anyone to be our HC in Monaco, although he might have thought it an enjoyable bauble to have.

  11. outofbed 11

    “Charging 0% interest instead of 8% to 20% interest is clearly at less than 90% of the market value, and I think there is little chance the Electoral Commission would view it differently.”

    I am crap at maths so this is probably wrong
    100 000 8% = Market value $ 108,000

    108,000 x 90 % = 97200
    so therefore if you pay 100 000 back it is more then 90%
    Isn’t it?

  12. insider 12

    Nope I think he would likely be a good choice. Just as I think his gong was deserved. One of the sad things here is that someone who has been immensely successful on a global basis and whose success and generosity should be celebrated is now is dragged into petty political row.

    And Labour is mainly to blame through their lack of openness and underhanded behaviour. They are getting what they deserve, because they opened the door when they went around making up “american bagmen” and then changing electoral law to suit themselves. The Glenn issue is showing how mendacious they are.

    I mean to say, how can Mike Williams “forget” to declare the Glenn donation given all the fuss about the EFA and Labour’s accounting practises? How convenient for him that his memory fails at such a time. Perhaps he needs to be rested from all those SOE boards he’s been appointed to -his brain is obviously too full.

  13. insider 13


    It could also be interpreted that as it is a loan not a gift 8% is the cost of money therefore any interest rate less than 90% of 8% (ie about 7.2%) is not allowed.

    Bob the builder got in trouble for renting wood for signs rather than buying it.

  14. outofbed 14

    So going by my calcs everything is ok
    going by yours we are quibbling over less then $800 bucks ?

  15. Graeme Edgeler 15

    outofbed – no.

    DPF is correct, the service is the loaning of $100,000. The cost of that service is the interest charged. If no interest is charged then a service has been provided at 0% of the ordinary market value.

    Under both the Electoral Act 1993, and the Electoral Finance Act, that foregone interest qualifies as a donation, and would need to be disclosed if it’s worth more than $10,000. The EFA did make it absolutely clear that foregone interest is a donation, but this was the case under the old law. The EFA made a number of similar changed in other areas of the law – making sure that people could not now argue that the generally stated rule didn’t apply to their situation.

    In this case however, it seems likely that the foregone interest would be worth less than $10,000 (it would need to be added to other smaller donations to see if the total was over $10,000, but there don’t seem to have been any).

  16. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10493212

    So all that is stopping Owen Glenn becoming Honorary Consul to Monaco is Winston Peters’ signature. But doesn’t Winston Peters have a strong dislike of the influence of “big money” in politics?

  17. insider 17

    I have no idea if the numbers are correct or their implications. And they are not really the point.

    The issue is the less than open way that it has been dealt with when the whole issue of wealthy donors and transparency was under close scrutiny and debate led by Labour, and has now coalesced with claims of jobs and gongs for the boys given by labour to wealthy donors.

    It is a bit reminiscent of the AIr NZ soldiers to Iraq issue. A whole lot of highly principled fingers are pointed but it turns out they are covered in the same muck.

  18. Tane 18

    It is a bit reminiscent of the AIr NZ soldiers to Iraq issue. A whole lot of highly principled fingers are pointed but it turns out they are covered in the same muck.

    Sounds like you’re talking about the Nats. They’re swimming in $2m of secret donations yet have the audacity to accuse an openly declared donor of unseemly behaviour. They can’t get their story straight on Iraq other than that they would have joined the invasion, then cry foul when Air NZ is caught ferrying foreign troops there without the government’s knowledge.

    National is unprincipled, dishonest and reeking of hypocrisy on both of these issues.

  19. outofbed 19

    so Thanx for that Graeme
    So when you say
    In this case however, it seems likely that the foregone interest would be worth less than $10,000 (it would need to be added to other smaller donations to see if the total was over $10,000, but there don’t seem to have been any).

    So Dpf has his knickers in a twist about nothing again then ?

  20. Graeme 20

    “So Dpf has his knickers in a twist about nothing again then?”

    Well, there’s still the statement by Mike Williams (in the wake of the New Year Honour) that no donation had been received from Mr Glenn since the election. It may not have been a donation large enough to be disclosed, but there was a donation.

  21. deemac 21

    WP can rest easy as Glenn’s influence on politics is a big fat zero

  22. insider 22

    I don’t think the nats have attacked Glenn at all. Can you provide a cite? When you say he was an open Labour donor why did Mike Williams “forget” the $100k loan? Even HC says they could have been more transparent…

    I don’t remember the Nats complaining that AirNZ was ferrying troops. I think they revelled in pointing out the issue at the time Iraq policy was an issue, and Labour’s feral response even though none of the most senior govt policy advisers saw a policy issue.

    Still it;s good to know we are aiding democracy in Burma by building cellphone towers.

  23. amoral philosopher 23

    Ah, the perverse morality of “double standards” and “hypocrisy”.

    You do big bad thing. I do small, not very bad thing.

    But I am more guilty than you, because I pointed out the bigger bad thing.

    If I only did big bad things, and never drew attention to others doing big bad things, I would not be guilty of “double standards” and “hypocrisy”. I would be a total shit, but not a hypocrite.

    Ergo, in this twisted universe, I am no longer guilty, but innocent.

    Let’s all do big bad things, give up on good things, point no fingers and together, fuck up the world.

  24. outofbed 24

    So if Mike Williams had said we have received a “donation of Interest”
    from a loan that was made to us interest free
    That would be Ok then then ?
    Its all a bit pedantic isn’t it ?

    Would it not be better to have a rational debates about the oppositions vision for NZ and discuss the policies relating to this ?

    I want to know what Nz schools are going to look like If National become Government
    I want to know the changes that they propose for the Health System if any?
    I want to know if SOE’s are going to be privatised

    I want to know if there are plans to cut back on the public sector

    So many questions but no answers

    Just this focus on negativity all the time.

    Don’t we want leadership that is positive with a bold vision for the future?

  25. AncientGeek 25

    It may not have been a donation large enough to be disclosed, but there was a donation.

    Yes, but you are talking about the interest as being a donation under the Electoral Act 1993. That wasn’t exactly clear under that act, along with the whole question of nominal vs market costs which is what came out (or rather didn’t) of the Peters case.

    The act wasn’t exactly clear, which is one of the reasons for the EFA.

    I wouldn’t have thought that interest off an interest free loan was a donation under the old Act. I’m not surprised the Mike Williams didn’t either.

  26. Graeme 26

    S 214F of the Electoral Act 1993:

    National donation … Includes, where goods or services are provided to the party under a contract at 90 percent or less of their reasonable market value, the amount of the difference between the contractual price of the goods or services and the reasonable market value of those goods or services…

    I will loan you this money – service.

    I will loan you this money if you repay it – contract.

    Reasonable market value – normal interest rate for loan of that sort.

    Difference between normal cost of credit and zero cost of credit in this case = value of donation.

    No question, AncientGeek.

  27. amoral philosopher – sorry bro but your name conflicts with your argument. I would suggest that as an “amoral” philosopher you would recognise the distinction between good and evil as a discursive construct predicated by the notion of a an amoral power game played out within a cold and uncaring universe. To argue that we must do “bad” things is to argue that this notion of “bad” exists. Any philosophy of amorality must by definition reject such a notion. Perhaps you should re-present as “immoral” philosopher. But given the plurality of moral narrative we currently endure, that my boy, would be a very hard task to set oneself.

  28. AncientGeek 28

    I’d say you are correct legally for someone like a bank who provides a commercial service.

    But a personal loan? What would the reasonable market value of the interest of someone who doesn’t loan for a living be? To take the extreme example. If I was a candidate and borrowed money from my partner for the campaign. Is there a market rate for that interest?

    There is a problem with that logic for all voluntary work done for a political organization. To extend that logic further, delivering pamphlets could be considered a service, even if you were a teacher. You would have to argue that they could have taken it as a paid part-time job, therefore they were forgoing a potential payment to deliver for say NZF.

    I’d say that only the courts would be able to make a decision – perhaps they have drawn the line?

    cap: Freidman nervous
    you have to wonder…

  29. Graeme 29


    There is a problem with that logic for all voluntary work done for a political organization.

    You could argue that, which is why the Electoral Act had (and the EFA has) an exception:

    … donation … Does not include the labour of any person which is provided to the party free of charge by that person

    As for the loan from the partner, just like a donation from a partner, I’d want it disclosed if it was large enough. The interest foregone of any personal loan would approximate the interest a bank or other lending institution would charge – just like the value of me giving you some wood to build signs from that I’d hewn from a tree would approximate the value of that wood if bought from a lumber yard.

  30. AncientGeek 30

    Graeme: Interesting. I’d say you are probably correct. Of course that leaves open the question about what is an acceptable rate. For instance a high-yield term deposit return compared to having a cash surplus in a cheque account has quite a difference in interest rates.

    Have the courts ever actually ruled on interest free or low interest loans under the Electoral Act, and what the type of rate should be used?

    Anyway, we’re talking about a pretty small amount depending on how long the LP held it and what the rate used is. I seem to remember that my cheque account pays minuscule interest, which is why I hold cash in other accounts.

    In any case, I’m still not surprised that it wasn’t associated in Mike Williams as a donation. He probably just considered it to be a loan. Presumably it’d have been picked up when the accountants went through the books.

  31. Graeme 31

    Have the courts ever actually ruled on interest free or low interest loans under the Electoral Act, and what the type of rate should be used?

    I’m pretty sure not. Very little of anything related to electoral law has been decided by the courts – mostly what counts as an expense.

  32. The Double Standard 32

    In any case, I’m still not surprised that it wasn’t associated in Mike Williams as a donation. He probably just considered it to be a loan. Presumably it’d have been picked up when the accountants went through the books.

    Well, given the level in interest in Glenn at the time over the New Years honour, I would have to think that Williams was well aware of the distinction, and importance of the interest. He chose not to mention it because it would reinforce the impression that Glenn’s honour was related to his financial contribution to Teh Party.

    Under the law at the time, it appears that the loan would not need to be formally disclosed since the benefit was under $10,000. Therefore no-one would have been any the wiser. It is only due to Glenn himself that the presence of the loan was revealed.

    isn’t it remarkable that Tane is all over the blogs defending Teh Party by character assassination of Glenn, but he ignores the double standard of doing so – National did nothing illegal in 2005, the EB only fudged a name/address, yet much hysteria resulted (and continues here). Teh Party probably did nothing illegal in this case either, which is the main plank of Tane’s and other standardistas defence. Whats the difference you may ask – simply the same old Labour=good, National=Bad meme.

  33. isn’t it remarkable that Tane is all over the blogs defending Teh Party by character assassination of Glenn,

    Isn’t it remarkable that TDS think he can make shit up and people will buy it when they already know who he is and who he works for?

    Oh and TDS, you never answered my question about how you think wages should rise. Given you were banging on about the wage-gap with Australia I’d’ve thought you might have an answer.

    C’mon boy, prove you’re not just a research unit attack troll – give us an answer rather than a line…

  34. Tane 34

    TDS, stop lying. I haven’t engaged in any character assassination of Glenn, I’ve just pointed out the hypocrisy of National’s chest-beating over this when they’re the beneficiaries of $2 million of secret donations.

    Mike Williams, in compliance with the law, did not disclose a few grand of interest on a loan. National took in two million bucks in secret donations and is on the record as selling its policy to the insurance industry.

    Certainly I think it would have been wise for Labour to have disclosed the loan, but I can see how Williams would not consider it to be a donation, and that’s a world away from selling policies to your secret backers.

  35. the sprout 35

    who do you work for TDS?

  36. The Double Standard 36

    Tane – presumably you also see the hypocrisy of defending William’s adherence to the ‘letter of the law’ when you will not excuse the Nats for also following the ‘letter of the law’?

    And is this not character assassination

    “Of course, you’d have to take his claims with a grain of salt given his recent big-noting in the media

    I know you have worded it carefully, but this is hardly honoring the man.

    Spout – who do you work for?

    And for the record, since you continue to lie about this, I have no relationship at all with the National Party.

  37. Tane 37

    TDS, I figured you’d selectively quote. Anyone who’s followed the comments in their proper context would understand that, but again you’re a master of the National Party smear. They’ve trained you well.

    As for your other claim I don’t think Williams has done anything wrong. All parties get donations under $10,000 and it’s common practice not to declare them. Furthermore, interest on a loan was not even counted as a donation under the legislation in force at the time.

    That’s not to say I think it’s been handled well on Labour’s part – it’s definitely a bad look. But it does not compare with National’s rorting of our electoral system with millions of dollars of dirty money. It’s a matter of perspective TDS, something you seem to be lacking quite badly.

  38. The Double Standard 38

    Tane – For the record, since you continue to lie about this, I have no relationship at all with the National Party.

    How about you come up with some proof to the contrary?

    Also, nice to see you confirm that you don’t mind such offensive statements from Mickey. I’m sure that anyone else wouldn’t get such an easy ride.

    Now, I didn’t say that Williams had done anything illegal, just like National did nothing illegal in relation to the EB. You can spin this all you like but that is the literal truth

  39. Tane 39

    Also, nice to see you confirm that you don’t mind such offensive statements from Mickey. I’m sure that anyone else wouldn’t get such an easy ride.

    We’re pretty tolerant of most people TDS – you’re still here for example.

    Now, I didn’t say that Williams had done anything illegal, just like National did nothing illegal in relation to the EB.

    You’re right, and the Waitemata Trust rort wasn’t illegal either. But I’m saying you should get some perspective here. No one’s ever said an interest-free loan worth a few grand should have to be disclosed, it’s the big stuff that influences policy and it’s the big stuff the EFA was brought in to counter. That’s why National’s smears about Owen Glenn deserve nothing but ridicule until they disclose who is behind the Waitemata Trust. Do you know TDS?

  40. The Double Standard 40

    Tane – why would I know anything about the Waitemata Trust. Are you continuing to promote your lie that I’m linked to the Nats?

    For the record, since you seem to have comprehension problems, I have no relationship at all with the National Party.

    I don’t think any that is legal can be a ‘rort’. That word should be reserved for illegal actions, like Teh Party rorting $800,000 from the taxpayer for the pledge card.

    Here’s Labour’s anonymous donations for the past few elections. I wonder if these influenced policies?

    2005 $315,000
    2002 $380,050
    1999 $824,375

    I see that 40% of Anderton’s donations in 2005 came ‘anonymously’. You’d think that funding 40% of a party would get some policy eh?

    And finally, would a China Free Trade Agreement be considered big stuff?

  41. r0b 41

    Lacking in plausible new material, TDS trots out an old line:

    Teh Party rorting $800,000 from the taxpayer for the pledge card

    Labour’s spending on the pledge card was consistent with all parties practice (including Nationals) in the 2005 and previous elections. After the 2005 election, the Auditor General found some spending by all parties (except The Progressives) to have been improper. Though not legally required to do so, Labour paid the money back.

    In contrast, what was clearly illegal in that election was National’s $100,000 overspend on advertising.

    Here’s Labour’s anonymous donations for the past few elections. I wonder if these influenced policies

    Starting down that road can only end badly for you TDS. People can check the relative figures for themselves here:


    The only established case of policy for sale in NZ is the National Party’s policy affecting the insurance industry.

  42. lprent 42

    TDS is just irritating noise. If he isn’t a national party troll, then he gives a very good impression of one. Same tactics as have been used in offshore political blogs, but with less imagination.

  43. The Double Standard 43

    What tactics Lynn, pointing out Tane’s lies about me, and his ‘damning with faint praise’ of Glenn on kiwiblog?

    Or the hypocrisy of excusing Williams for acting within the law, when National did exactly the same?

    Rob – you can follow Teh Party’s talking points and try to divert attention all you like. The fact is that the AG found the over $1 million of “unlawful expenditure” occurred before the 2005 election, and by far the majority was spent by Labour.

    Since you seem so fond of linking to the source documents involved so readers can make their own conclusions…


  44. the sprout 44

    well here’s a good point on the matter raised by compt78 at KBB


  45. The Double Standard 45

    Nice try at misdirection spout, but unfortunately your commenter doesn’t seem to have followed the link that Rob so helpfully provided above. Inspecting the official returns shows that John Key has made no donations to the National party.

    I see from the transcript that you linked to that Clark didn’t actually answer this question, rather preformed a tired and predictable comment about the EB.

    John Key: Why is it that the Prime Minister seems to be struggling to either remember or reconcile any statements in regard to this matter, when Mr Glenn’s memory seems to be fully intact?

    Anyway, it looks like the MSM is continuing to follow the story and is not buying the Clark/Williams explanations. They quote Williams opening a new door for inquiry

    “An interest free loan is not a donation under any electoral act. It’s an interest free loan and we do have a lot of them, mainly from rich branches of the Labour Party,” he said.

    Cap: Rule Annette!

  46. lprent 46

    TDS: Remember that I don’t read the posts and then down to comments. I read comments in time order across the whole site.

    What I saw you do was putting about 10 comments from 1600 to 1802, with about 7 in the first 60 minutes. With the exception of the first one, all of them were, in my opinion, designed to flame or inflame one or more people.

    Try these links out and see if you think that your behaviour doesn’t fit the description of a troll.
    Internet troll
    Flame war

    The ‘sod (who sometimes acts like a troll in response to trolling) has offered a possible explanation for your behaviour. To date I haven’t seen any evidence that he isn’t correct from your behaviour.

    Some of the editors seem to think that you’re amusing to have around. Personally I’m just waiting for them to decide that they’re wrong.

  47. gobsmacked 47

    TDS says:

    “Inspecting the official returns shows that John Key has made no donations to the National party.”

    Not true.

    The official returns do not show any donations IN HIS NAME. Which is a very different thing indeed.

    For example, here are some donations listed in 1999:

    NZ National Party Anonymous n/a 25,000.00
    NZ National Party Anonymous n/a 120,000.00
    NZ National Party Anonymous n/a 25,000.00
    NZ National Party Anonymous n/a 200,000.00

    And so on. Many more, through the years.

    We don’t know if John Key has donated money to National. We can’t know. But I’m sure we can all agree that we SHOULD know.

    Of course, he could simply tell us. Do you think he will?

  48. The Double Standard 48

    Troll: usually irrelevant or off-topic messages

    Can you point to an off-topic message in those I have posted today, apart from my apparently feeble joke about the baby bounce?

    There are a few above that are marginal I guess, but are in direct response to Tane, who presumably is allowed to lead discussion off-topic.

    (even this is off topic to the original post, but I’m hoping that is allowed since you are the administrator)

    I will admit to offering a different view of events to the authors here, but I don’t consider that trolling – do you?

  49. The Double Standard 49


    I agree that we SHOULD know, just like we should know who made these donations to Labour in 2005

    New Zealand Labour Party Anonymous $25,000.00
    New Zealand Labour Party Anonymous $50,000.00
    New Zealand Labour Party Anonymous $40,000.00
    New Zealand Labour Party Anonymous $40,000.00
    New Zealand Labour Party Anonymous $20,000.00
    New Zealand Labour Party Anonymous $50,000.00
    New Zealand Labour Party Anonymous $20,000.00

    Now, I seem to recall that Labour just passed some new electoral finance legislation. National did not vote for this legislation. Why do you suppose that anonymous donation are still permitted?

  50. lprent 50

    In most cases that I see. You started a topic, and when pulled up on it, you then attacked the person commenting on your comment. If that is what you describe as being in topic, then I’d suggest you were generating the topic.

    Other times, a flamer is simply an individual who believes he or she carries the only valid opinion. This leads him or her to personally attack those who disagree. Occasionally, flamers wish to upset and offend other members of the forum, in which case they can be called “trolls”.

    The tactic is familar. I’ve been around the net for a very long time.

  51. gobsmacked 51


    I agree that anonymous donations should not be permitted (above a small, nominal sum of the “raffle” type). I don’t support permitting them, regardless of party.

    But I’m glad you agree that John Key should disclose his financial contributions to the National Party.

    He could do it in Parliament tomorrow, perhaps?

  52. lprent 52

    TDS & godsmacked.

    I don’t believe it – I agree as well. I can’t see any reason for anonymous donations. But it got compromised out of the EFA, so we’ll probably have to wait another 15 years until it gets reviewed again.

  53. the sprout 53

    John Key discloses all his donations to the National Party in Parliament tomorrow – that would be great to see, a real commitment to transparency and accountability. go Johno!

  54. The Double Standard 54


    I’ve been around the net for a very long time.

    Join the club. I see you on usenet around March 1992, which is a few months before my first posting.

    I posted in this thread at 4:00, a fairly rational post with no personal abuse or cursing By 4:06 both Robinsod and Tane claim that I’m lying. Robbo starts slinging mud. at 4:22 Sprout want’s to know who I work for.

    I replied at 4:36, with a quote from Tane that illustrates what he has been posting about Glenn on KB for the past few days. I also post that I am not associated with National in any way.

    Tane replies at 4:47 with an accusation of selective quoting, and again links me with National, and brings in Nationals donations

    I reply at 4:56, again pointing out that I am not associated with National, and that both Williams and National did not break the law in relation to donations

    Tame replies at 5:03, again implying that I know something about National’s donations (is he an individual who believes he or she carries the only valid opinion?)

    I reply at 5:20 and after again pointing out that I am not associated with National, provide some factual figures of anonymous donations to Labour over the past few years.

    Now before this gets ridiculous could you point out where I went wrong? I don’t consider any of this trolling or flaming. Beyond the first post I have only responded to points raised by Tane. I haven’t told anyone to f-off or other niceties that Robbo regularly uses.

    Gobsmacked – who knows. I can’t tell Key to do anything any more than you can tell labour to disclose where they get their anon donations from.

  55. the sprout 55

    need a bit of overtime to pay off those christmas debts tds?
    where are all your co-workers – why’ve they all left you to the night shift?

  56. lprent 56

    Join the club. I see you on usenet around March 1992, which is a few months before my first posting.

    I’m somewhat earlier than that. Started playing on early inter-uni lnks in the late 70’s. BBS’es back to 1986/7 over the packet switching networks (and locally on modems a bit later). Had different handles on usenet prior to 1992 as I was using dialup uucp mainly. By about 94/5 I pretty much went to closed forums on specialised topics, and stopped by about ’99 because I was writing networks of a different sort.

    The only reason that I helped set this blog up was that I was asked by a friend for tech expertise. My name is on it, so I’m not particularly willing to let certain things happen. They typically start in flame wars.

    Now before this gets ridiculous could you point out where I went wrong?

    You should know the drill. I couldn’t care less if you disagree, do provoking comments, or rev people up. But make the damn things interesting. Remember I have to read them. People like Ruth, rOb, etc do read them as well.

    In my opinion, you repeat your points way too often and only in one style. People react to that, and at present they have a short fuse towards you. Expand your arguments – make a case. You seem to have the capability. Don’t just relentlessly attack to score non-existant points. Take some time to write a comment. There are people who actually enjoy discussing issues on the basis that they agree to disagree.

    I realise the ‘sod (and others) are sometimes a pain in the arse. But most of them are pretty young at this (at least by my standards). For instance ‘sods behaviour on this blog is usually reactive – trolling the trolls. He does get warned by the moderators when he starts and then persists flames.

    I’d have sent this via e-mail. but…

  57. TDS – cry me a river. Or should that be “blow me a goat”…

  58. r0b 58

    TDS: Since you seem so fond of linking to the source documents involved so readers can make their own conclusions

    Yup, I’m a real badass that way!

    lprent: I’m somewhat earlier than that. Started playing on early inter-uni lnks in the late 70’s.

    That’s a ways back alright. I first read usenet in about 1985, back when there were a couple of dozen groups, using rn or the equivalent under VMS. It’s been interesting watching online media evolve ever since. The technology changes, human nature stays the same.

    Aside from a few answers to technical questions I never posted to any forum before The Standard. There’s nothing quite so futile as internet debate!

  59. Murray 59

    Labour National
    OG = EB

  60. lprent 60

    That’s a ways back alright. I first read usenet in about 1985, back when there were a couple of dozen groups, using rn or the equivalent under VMS.

    I was at waikato in the late 70’s and early 80’s. E-mail was just getting started on some protocol on the DEC1170 (pre RFC821/2). Got pretty excited when I got my first message from offshore.

    Mid 80’s would about right. I think I first started picking up a feed after I came back to Auckland from Otago – probably about late 89 or early 90. But before that there were international BBS style systems like the one run by Byte (BIX? something like that). Used to go to them for code.

    human nature stays the same.

    Yep – almost depressing sometimes.

  61. r0b 61

    Got pretty excited when I got my first message from offshore.

    Ahh yes. And Gopher – that amazed me at the time. Getting data live from systems in another country! Wow!

    And now kids grow up with the web, and social networking, and they put their lives on line. The introduction of the web especially has been the start (and probably just the start) of such an amazing paradigm shift. Full steam ahead into uncharted waters…

  62. outofbed 62

    So when is Mr Key going to tell how much he contributed to buy the leadership of the National party?

    Captcha Fancies Reagan


  63. lprent 63

    …and they put their lives on line.

    Yeah it is ironic. Since the web went online I’ve pursued an active policy of keeping my life off it. I value my privacy, and you can just visualise the downstream effects.

    Then of course I was deranged enough to put up my hand to be the name, and point of contact, on this blog……. Oh well, I’m old enough, thickskinned, and grumpy enough to do it.

  64. r0b 64

    Since the web went online I’ve pursued an active policy of keeping my life off it.

    Me too. And I’ve been fortunate to keep my kids from putting themselves on line as well. Security through obscurity is a good motto.

    Then of course I was deranged enough to put up my hand to be the name, and point of contact, on this blog

    You could have gone through an “anonymising” third party, as I see some people do. I guess there was no way of knowing in advance how successful The Standard was going to be, or the kind of Kiwiblog Right attention it was going to attract.

    Oh well, I’m old enough, thickskinned, and grumpy enough to do it.

    Go team!

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  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
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  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
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  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
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  • Life asserts itself regardless
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  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
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  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
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  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
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  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
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  • Advance payments to support contractors
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  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
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  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
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  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
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  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
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  • State of National Emergency extended
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  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
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  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
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  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
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  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
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    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
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  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
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  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
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  • COVID-19 updates
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    6 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
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    6 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
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    7 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
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    7 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
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    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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    1 week ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
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    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
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    1 week ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
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    1 week ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
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  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
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    1 week ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
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    1 week ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
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    1 week ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
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    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
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    2 weeks ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
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    2 weeks ago