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RWC Tickets

Written By: - Date published: 8:40 pm, May 23rd, 2012 - 32 comments
Categories: business, david shearer, Gerry Brownlee, john key - Tags: , ,

So Key is ‘surprised’ that David Shearer, the local member for Eden Park, accepted tickets to a local game, and doesn’t feel beholden to corporate interests?  He can accept hospitality and still criticise a company is somehow shocking?  I think this tells us more about John, than it surprises the rest of us about David…

Also, Government ministers – as seen in corporate boxes – according to Gerry Brownlee don’t have to declare their gifts as it was ‘work’ because the Government was hosting the World Cup.  Seriously?

Were they in the SkyCity box too?  You can’t see an organisation like SkyCity just getting one set of party leaders in…

Which one seems like the hypocrisy and lack of accountability here?


32 comments on “RWC Tickets”

  1. jpwood 1

    Don’t worry its just phase three of an electoral cycle, flinging faeces around like a rabid monkey, ignore it, phase four is defeat.

  2. fender 2

    Too right Bunji, this is probably the most absurd comment Key has ever come out with and illustrates what a complete fool we have as our PM.

  3. “according to Gerry Brownlee don’t have to declare their gifts as it was ‘work’ because the Government was hosting the World Cup.”

    I think what is meant by that is that they have to be there in an official capacity (Key and McCulley at the least) therefore it isn’t a pecuniary interest.

    But as an apparent conservative, Tory, ring-wing, John Key fanboi I would say that, eh? Instead of, you know, it actually being true.

    • felix 3.1

      Ok fanboi, what do you think about John Key’s apparent belief that a gift from a corporation should buy that corporation the silence of the Leader of the Opposition?

      • AndrewK 3.1.1

        “Ok fanboi, what do you think about John Key’s apparent belief that a gift from a corporation should buy that corporation the silence of the Leader of the Opposition?”

        John Key’s assumption would, realistically, be based on personal experience and a critically objective observation of New Zealand’s political class. These people, both Labour and National, have a long and sordid history of subordinating ‘public’ policy to corporate interests.


        • Colonial Viper

          National more than Labour. After all, National is the Party of Big Business.

        • felix

          “These people, both Labour and National, have a long and sordid history of subordinating ‘public’ policy to corporate interests.

          Which is sort of the opposite of what Shearer was doing and Key was complaining about.

          Isn’t it?

      • higherstandard 3.1.2

        What did Key actually say ?

    • Pascal's bookie 3.2

      “I think what is meant by that is that they have to be there in an official capacity (Key and McCulley at the least) therefore it isn’t a pecuniary interest. ”

      How does the wrod “gift” fit into that?

      I mean, if they are there as part of the official proceedings in their role as Minister of World Cups or whatever, they are unlikely to need a comp ticket from a third party now are they? I’m pretty sure that the RWC people wold make sure that all the people needed in an official capacity were admitted to the event. If not, ie, if they were supposed to pay for their attendence, then the pecuniary advantage still exists.

      If the argument is that they were gifted a ticket simply because the third party thought it would be nice to have the Minister in their corporate box, I’m not sure I see how that is different from any other MP who got gifted a ticket because the gifter thought it would be nice to have them there as MPs.

      I’m a bit thick though, so I’m sure you can explain this truth to me.

      • It was just a thought – don’t know if that was the reasoning behind it though.

        But as a John Key fascist conservative fanboi (who is somehow, despite this, further to left than the Dali Lama using the political compass you guys love to use) I probably think it’s all OK either way. I don’t think it’s OK to not declare a gift in these circumstances but, hey, I am probably lying.

        Carry on, sugar  

      • DavidW 3.2.2

        The application of a nanosecond of intelligent thought would have it that Key, McCully, Brownlee et al were actually hosting VIP guests at any games they attended so would not have been enjoying the free booze at the Sky City Corporate Box. As such they would have been on duty and working. I understand that quite a large list of foreign government representatives just happened to make official visits to NZ during the RWC and that quite a few Ministers were tasked with hosting them.

        • Pascal's bookie

          IF it’s the case that every game they attended, they were hosting people then spot on. I don’t think anyone is questioning that.

        • Draco T Bastard

          If our PM/MPs was hosting other officials then why didn’t we buy them the tickets? See, that’s what happens with official business, the organisation doing the hosting buys the tickets. It doesn’t get the tickets given to them by other organisations so that the other organisations end up hosting the officials come to visit and speak with ours.

  4.  One of the most appalling pieces of reporting I read over the last year or so was the sentence in a piece that went something along the lines of “Dominique Strauss Kahn, Socialist party candidate was staying in a $3,000 a night hotel…”. You cannot be a Socialist and stay in a hotel that charges $3,000 a night. Similarly, David Shearer cannot pretend to be a candidate of the ordinary person while shmoozing with the ruling elite in their corporate boxes.

     Those tickets and gifts Shearer so readily accepts have strings attached to them. I am, and I suspect so too are many New Zealanders, heartily sick of political candidates flopping around on their bellies like performing seals for corporate interests.

     We need representatives that are prepared to implement policies that reflect the interests and aspirations of ordinary citizens, not functionaries of a corporate elite who see their purpose as managing the population of this country in the interests of big business profits.

     How hard would it have been for David Shearer to have said, “No. I can’t accept these tickets, it would be inappropriate.”

     Apparently it was too hard. 

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      AndrewK worries about a few rugby tickets.

      Meanwhile the PM gifts $100M in fees to the investment banking fraternity that he used to work for (and will no doubt again before long).

      Get real my man.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1

        Corruption often starts small. Personally, I’d prefer it if public servants didn’t get gifts from corporates/people.

  5. IrishBill 5

    Frankly I’m not happy with Labour MPs taking patronage from corporates. I expect it from tories.

    • Bunji 5.1

      Well, yes – I don’t see why any MP can’t buy their own rugby tickets…

      But I guess we’re all tempted by freebies.

      MPs probably should resist them though – corporates do give them for a reason…

      • Key and McCulley wouldn’t have needed tickets in the first place. They were there in official capacities, working, so I don’t know why they would need tickets

        • DH

          If my view of Labour MPs wasn’t already low I’d be appalled by it. Exploiting a privileged position for personal gratification displays a lack of integrity & ethics. Shearer is probably used to mixing with sponsors from his UN role & may not have thought much about it but he should have known better. The rest of them certainly should.

          It’s interesting that Key is implicitly admitting that he does feel feel beholden to corporate interests. Well, not interesting really we already know that but he’s as much as admitted it there & they’re usually more circumspect.

        • Draco T Bastard

          If they were working then the expense would be listed because we would have bought the tickets. So, all you have to do is show us where that expense shows up on the governments books.

  6. Accepting freebies from any large corporate is a stupid idea. If MPs had any sense they wouldn’t do it,

    Unfortunately they think they’ve earnt it. All about them after all.

  7. tracey 7

    Corporates dont gift anything to an mp without an expectation it xan help them in some way whether its dedicated one on one time or favours. Owen glenn and dotcom show that they dont do it for nothing, and look how thry turn when they dont get what they expected. On their salaries these guys and gals shld have been buying their own tickets.

    • Carol 7.1

      Exactly, tracey.

      Did any Greens MPs or Mana candidates take such “gifts”?

      • Jester 7.1.1

        Probably not Carol. After all you have to have something to offer or hold some type of power to make you attractive to the lobbyists.

        I see Darien didn’t receive any either.

  8. Tom Gould 8

    Maybe Shearer should ban any contact with Skycity. No corporate boxes, no meetings, no dinners, no quiet drinks, no staying at their hotels. Staff included. Shut down their lobbying.

  9. Carol 9

    It’s interesting that one of the main ways that MPs were given corporate gifts was to the Rugby World Cup. This sort of blokey event is very much in keeping with the way the financial elite operates:


    Women who work in the New Zealand financial services sector still see it as a “blokey” male-dominated industry where much of the networking is based around either watching or participating in sport, according to research by the industry.

    The survey carried out by Financial Service Institute of Australasia (Finsia) in conjunction with the Bank of New Zealand questioned 272 men and women in New Zealand as part of an Australasia-wide project.

    According to my estimates, it’s not only that twice as many National than Labour MPs accepted the RWC gift tickets from corporates (32 National, 16 Labour), but also a higher proportion of Labour gift tickets went to women (25% of the Nat PMs were female compared with about 37% of the Labour ones).

    This probably reflects the difference in proportions of women MPs for each party, as well as the relative proportions in the senior ranks of each party.

    Both parties need to clean up their acts and stop participating in this influential elitist and blokey networking.

  10. Rob 10

    Years ago when I worked for a large NZ owned corporation that was trying to do a lot of work in the health arena , we often sponsored Annette King and other high ranking Govt officials into our corporate boxes.  She loved it…

  11. Scintilla 11

    Did anyone really expect any politician, of any stripe, not to enjoy the RWC to its fullest? Everyone has to have some fun – at least it was public fun, not behind closed doors-don’t know it’s happening fun. Just like I didn’t care that JK used an airforce chopper to get to the car races, it’s just a perk. All a matter of knowing where to draw the line as to what’s a risque but acceptable perk (in the public’s eyes) and what’s not.

    However, tis also good to remind them that they are getting perks and we’re getting a sh*t sandwich. So what about it?

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