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Written By: - Date published: 7:46 am, April 29th, 2019 - 101 comments
Categories: health and safety, Kelvin Davis, national, Simon Bridges, workers' rights, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

National thinks that it is onto a winner.  It has found an example of egregious waste of public money.  Not $26 million on a vanity flag referendum, not $11 million to build a sheep station in the middle of a Saudi desert, fly a whole lot of sheep over and watch them die, but $1 million on slushie machines in prisons.

For the prison guards.  Who have to work in poorly air conditioned areas wearing uniforms and full body odour armour and who have confirmed that the slushies are the best thing to quickly cool them in the middle of a hot summer’s day. As a health and safety measure.

From Newshub:

National Party leader Simon Bridges has slammed the Ministry of Corrections for spending over $1 million on slushie machines.

Corrections bought 193 ice slushie machines for their staff with the intention of improving “their health and wellbeing during the summer months”, documents released to the party under the Official Information Act show.

Corrections say prisoners and staff were exposed to uncomfortably hot conditions during the summer of 2017/18 that could have led to unrest within their facilities.

That year, Corrections responded by providing staff extra breaks, access to cold water, fans and flannels while also allowing prisoners more cold showers and time outside of their cells.

Despite the fact no significant unrest occurred that summer, further measures were deemed necessary the next year.

“In preparation for the 2018/19 summer and the potential for a repeat of the previous summer’s conditions, we provided crushed ice mixture for staff to consume when required to reduce core body temperatures in excessive heat conditions, while minimising the risk of sodium depletion from dehydration,” the statement from Corrections read.

Bridges says these purchases were a complete waste of time and taxpayer money.

“They managed the year before well enough without these slushie machines,” he told Newshub.

“It’s irresponsible and it’s wasteful from Kelvin Davis and the Government.”

Kelvin Davis has given the perfect response.  From Radio New Zealand:

Mr Davis said spending was an operational matter but he supported measures that improved staff’s safety and well-being.

“Staff work hard managing some of society’s toughest people. When you’ve got Corrections officers working in extreme heat and wearing 6kg stab-proof vests, it’s vital they are able to keep cool, safe and healthy – and that helps ensure they’re able to do their job well too.

“It’s a disgrace that Simon Bridges is trying to politicise staff health and safety. This is nothing like the last National Government spending $26 million on a flag referendum or hundreds of thousands on a single TV screen, reception desk and hair straighteners. This is about looking after our people and making sure they’re able to perform well – and I make no apologies for it.”

Vice President of the Corrections Association Paul Dennehy also did not hold back.  Again from Radio New Zealand:

I understand Mr Bridges and the need for financial and fiscal prudence and the question to be asked, it’s just disappointing that he’s come out so anti it when his party when they were in power introduced measures to alleviate the heat temperatures that prisoners were feeling by giving them iceblocks and icecreams, bottled water, and fans whilst at the same time providing staff with nothing.”

The attack is so hamfisted.  I mean who is giving Bridges advice? Porky the waste hater?

At the same time as his latest cringe worthy shock horror expose Bridges has confirmed his leadership is on the line by calling for discipline and unity.  From Audrey Young at the Herald:

National leader Simon Bridges is expected to deliver a strong message to his caucus on Tuesday that the only path to power is through discipline and uniting behind his leadership.

He said the message he got from delegates at the first of four regional conferences he attended at the weekend, in Hamilton, was the same.

The issue of leadership had not been raised specifically with him, he said.

“But there was a clear and strong message that in addition to holding the Government to account in developing our plans, we win back power by being disciplined and unified,” he told the Herald. “That came through loud and clear.”

The clock is ticking.  Attacks on a sector traditionally generally sympathetic to the right will not help.  Who knows but slushiegate may be the event that irreparably damages Bridges’ leadership.

101 comments on “Slushiegate ”

  1. Matiri 1

    Full body odour?

    [Oops thanks for that. Have adjusted. I kept thinking of body odour and hot prisons … – MS]

  2. lprent 2

    While this does smell a bit like a dead fish issue to me, we should not jump to conclusions.

    For the righties, remember that while keeping Simon Bridges in 'charge' of National doesn't mean that the coalition parties will win the next election. However it does mean that we'd not have to put up with the endless news of Judith Collins trying to stem waka jumping as National starts to disintegrate and split.

    It is the difference between watching light comedy and dark tragedy. We need viable opposition parties and there is only National and its remora – so let's think of alternatives.

    • RedLogix 2.1

      I don't usually engage in these political pile on's, but this one really does speak to an appalling lack of judgement. A fairly large fraction of the National caucus must have had a WTF moment when they heard this. The only reason Bridges has made it this far is Judith Collins, and that no-one wants to burn their career going up against Ardern at the moment.

      This is the fatal problem with personality politics; when strong leaders like Clark or Key depart there is never an obvious successor, and it takes several electoral cycles to recover. But someone plausible needs to step up or we'll eventually wind up with the horror show that is the UK Tories at the moment.

      • Kat 2.1.1

        You could argue that near 40% of the electorate continues to display an appalling lack of judgement. Difficult to regard John Key as a “strong” leader, rather an opportunist that happened to get himself in the right place at the right time. Don’t get me wrong I have the utmost respect for John Key’s gambling prowess and he certainly knew when to fold them. Listening to Simon Bridges on RNZ this morning he pushed the unity, cohesion and working as a team that National must adhere too if they are to regain power. Those choice of words say it all. If the powers that be at National need a high school debating robotic point scoring type of leader that doesn't mangle the language they should immediately recruit Mike Hosking.

        • Stuart Munro.

          I blame a lot of that on the MSM – the journalists cease to educate and inform, and the result is that the public are reinforced in crude and cynical bullshit. This makes toxic 'celebrity' scoundrels like Trump or Key electable, and the party that accretes around them incapable of contributing the healthy critique expected of a Burkean loyal opposition.

          There are plenty of grounds on which the Coalition might be criticized, but the Gnats will only air those that serve the corrupt agenda that lost them power in the first place. It falls so far short of enlightened governance it's breathtaking.

        • Shadrach

          John Key was a remarkable politician. His popularity throughout his premiership was staggeringly high compared to other NZ political figures. He carried his party to election victories with increasing majorities, and was close to consigning the main opposition party to the dustbin of history. Like Helen Clark, Key was able to read public opinion, and be seen to be on the right side of history. Unlike Jacinda Ardern, Key was prepared to use his political capital to introduce policy he was committed to (eg partial asset sales).

          By comparison, Bridges seems like a dog barking at passing cars. Perhaps he can take some of the credit for National's high current polling (compared to the stage in the electoral cycle), but more likely Nat supporters are hanging in despite his leadership, not because of it.

          • Incognito

            Key ignored the results of the referendum on the asset sales. The sales went ahead in 2013, i.e. five years after Key first became PM. Ardern has been PM for 18 months and is yet to ignore a citizens-initiated referendum. Yes, Key was a political phenomenon but the political landscape was right for this to take full effect.

            • Shadrach

              Key didn't ignore the results of the referendum. He took that policy to an election, one that he won handsomely. In doing so he used political capital in a way Ardern hasn’t had the courage to do with the CGT.

              • Incognito

                He claimed (!) that the 2011 election result had given him a mandate that included ignoring the referendum, which came after the election, not before. Citizens-initiated referenda are a perfectly legitimate democratic tool and Key was in his legal right to ignore it. But it didn’t put him on the right side of history.

                Five years versus 18 months …

                • Shadrach

                  You forgot about the 2014 election – another huge majority. That's the only referendum that matters. Ardern has bottled her chance at affecting change she defined as being of considerable importance.

                  • Incognito

                    One day every three years is the only time we get to experience democracy? Is that how representative democracy works? Really? That’s such an insult to intelligence! Why have OIA? Why make submissions to Select Committees? Indeed, why bother with anything? The election result sets everything in stone and freezes democracy for another three years!?

                    Five years versus 18 months …

                    Labour-led CoL versus National …

                    • Shadrach

                      "One day every three years is the only time we get to experience democracy?"

                      CIR are non-binding, so yes largely useless. Key went to two elections with the partial privatisation plans, and won both handsomely. Elections are binding.

          • Stuart Munro.

            Key was never on the right side of history.

            Troops where they shouldn't have been throughout his term.

            He was remarkable only as the Borgias were remarkable – for his amorality.

            • Shadrach

              I realise you suffer from KDS. I pity you, I really do. Such ignorance, such envy, such irrational emotion. It must have made life very hard for you.

              • Stuart Munro.

                Oh not really.

                But you should find another space to sing the praises of this villain – Kiwiblog should do it – they're mostly lying numpties there already – you'll fit right in. Round here we tend to resent liars and thieves.

                • Shadrach

                  John Keys personal popularity and the electoral success of his party seem to hurt with people like you, just as Helen Clark’s did with some on the right. Get over it.

                  • Stuart Munro.

                    It's not personal – I despise all corrupt lying villains.

                    If Key had been a good governor I'd have cheerfully endorsed him – I was thoroughly sick of Clark. Key started well, talking about dealing with housing issues, but talk about them was the only thing he did.

                    I understand that you thin-skinned ultraright snowflakes cannot bear for your idols to have their clay feet pointed out, but really, your infatuation with this self-serving POS does you no credit.

                    • Shadrach

                      Infatuation? I'm quoting facts. Key's personal popularity and electoral success are matters of record. As is your thoroughly irrational dislike of him.

                • Tuppence Shrewsbury

                  unless they are the deputy prime minister and lead the strongest support party for the government. Then their presence is not only tolerated, it’s positively welcomed and that sort of behaviour encouraged.

      • AB 2.1.2

        "someone plausible needs to step up or we'll eventually wind up with the horror show that is the UK Tories at the moment"

        What if someone plausible doesn't step up – or that anybody who can find it in themselves to join the National Party, can ipso facto never be plausible? How do political parties die and can they be killed off, is the question we should be asking.

        I am not remotely suggesting that National will die, but a shift in our political spectrum to make current Labour the major right-wing opposition to a Green/Socialist party would be a good thing. Labour could perform a very important and useful corrective function in such a role, whereas at the moment they are just a little bit crap.

  3. mauī 3

    Seeing him interviewed on the tele he made the witty remark associating the slushies with "slush funds". No doubt that was the only reason this issue was chosen – for the idiotic sound bite.

  4. Macro 4

    Who knows but slushiegate may be the event that irreparably damages Bridges’ leadership.

    Oh I hope not! He is doing such a great job for the Government.

  5. MickeyBoyle 5

    Yeah, $5000 per slushie machine, I don't know why tax payers will be concerned with this at all…How worse has poverty, inequality and welfare got over the past twelve months again?.

    • mpledger 5.1

      Presumably that included all wiring and plumbing and transport to out of the way places.

  6. Kevin 6

    Oh well, there is another sector of society who will not vote for National in 2020.

    Keep it up Simon.

  7. marty mars 7

    slushy – the sound of flushing water after a career is completed.

  8. mac1 8

    Corrections has over 8000 staff in 20 prisons looking after 20,000 prisoners annually. It has a budget of over $1 billion.

    With nearly 200 slushie machines costing $1 million, that’s one machine for every 10 staff assuming three shifts and holidays. Each machine costs $5000 so that is $500 per staff member at work. Assuming a ten year (surely a low estimate) life span, for each machine that's $50 per annum per staff member on duty. A dollar a week, in other words!

    Employers traditionally supply such arrangements.

    Prison guards suffer at least three hundred assaults annually. About 5%. Over a ten year period, that's nearly half the staff being assaulted on average.

    The comfort and compensation for wearing stab proof vests in hot conditions is surely worth a dollar a week? Let alone the fact that officers who are cool and properly hydrated can act in a far more measured way.

  9. cleangreen 9

    smiley 'Simple Simon' has lied on Newshub today saying his Party has an environmental policy???????

    WTF we have never seen it yet so drop the lies Simon as you lot while last in Government did everything to destroy our environment from food air water contamination to shutting down our regional rail freight and passenger services!!!!!

    And now the roads are so 'gridlocked' with trucks and tourists many people are dying on those roads so don't tell us you have an environmental policy you liar!!!!!!!!!

    • James 9.1


      there you go. Took all of 3 seconds to find.

      You show yourself up to be an idiot and a liar.

      • cleangreen 9.1.1

        James the national gatekeeper. "the proof is in the pudding"

        You are a fool to believe that phoney crap.

        National never had any environmental policy in force, when they were in power.

        Thay proved how to wreck the environment while they were in power.

        If he has one now, (which he has never explained in any detail to the public or the media, then it is a 'fools paradise' for anyone to assume that they will have one if ever they get back in Government (which I doubt very much will happen).

        He cannot claim National have a working environmental policy that he has used.

        Takeout is with National" "never believe what you read or hear" from them.

        • James

          I see you are changing your wording. You are being a slimy liar. You have been caught out as an idiot and a liar again.

      • Peter 9.1.2

        Goodness me someone being an idiot and a liar!

        Have we jumped back to Simon Bridges, the online petition about the UN global migration compact and the 'junior' staffer?

      • Psycho Milt 9.1.3

        I think their environmental policy's incomplete – it left out several major items, like increasing fossil fuel usage, further intensification of farming and running an emissions trading scam using fake east European carbon credits. How could they have left those out? They've been the mainstay of the policy for over a decade.

      • Panda 9.1.4

        That link is to a Nat Party environs policy from 2017. Simon was not leader until 2018. The fact Simon has stated he is not responsible for his previous Govts actions dictates this is not his Govts policy so Clean Green is correct. Im sure you will apologise for your rude name calling?

        • Shadrach

          Clean Green claimed the nats had no environmental policy. Given how easy it is to check the veracity of that claim, James’ labelling CG a liar seems perfectly reasonable.

          • Incognito

            James @ 9.1 could have made his point without turning it into a personal attack (i.e. his third and last sentence). It sets the tone for subsequent comments and lowers it. This spills over into other comments and the personal shit takes over any decent conversation let alone robust debate. The only people that can change this are the ones who comment here.

            • Shadrach

              You are wrong. Clean Green set the tone by labelling Bridges a liar, an accusation that in this instance was utterly false and easily repudiated. James simply returned the volley. If you are concerned about the tone of the comments, take it up with Clean Green.

              • Incognito

                cleangreen is free to read and reply to any of my comments even those that appear to be solely directed at you wink

                You are correct that cleangreen called Bridges names but the difference is that Bridges is not a commenter here. For some reason, James felt it necessary to apply the law of the jungle here and an eye for an eye and have a go at another commenter in a personal attack. I find it hard to believe that he felt personally offended and attacked so to me it still seems unnecessary and disappointing. Make the point without the personal baggage; is that too much to ask from grown-ups?

                • Shadrach

                  "…the difference is that Bridges is not a commenter here."

                  That isn't a difference. CleanGreen began the antics, by dishonestly claiming Bridges lied about the nats having an environmental policy. James not only dosed him back with the link, he turned CG's own accusation back on himself. Your beef should be with CG, not James.

                  • Incognito

                    Of course, that is a difference. The point is that commenters could make an effort to reply to each other without the personal attacks on each other; it is so pointless. Obviously, you are one commenter who disagrees with me on this. That doesn’t bode well …

                    I honestly can’t believe that we are seeing here, day in day out, behaviour that we’d expect from 5-year olds in the sandpit: he started it, he lied, he threw sand in my eyes, he said his daddy’s car was faster than my daddy’s car, etc. You think that’s ok?

                    • Shadrach

                      There is no difference. In fact it could be argued that by attacking someone who isn't a poster here that Clean Green is actually a coward.

                      And calling someone out in the way James did is perfectly ok, particularly when he justified his claim with evidence. If you can't stand the heat, don't stand in the kitchen.

                      Edit – just seen this comment from Clean Green https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-30-04-2019/#comment-1612034. I presume you are now going to chastise CG for saying BM has been telling ‘porkies’?

      • Jenny - How to get there? 9.1.5

        Did see any mention of protecting the climate there, James.

  10. Observer Tokoroa 10

    That profound committed Communist Mrs Collins, frequent traveller to the Great Wall of Antiquity appears to have thrived on a good diet. She appears to have Used NZ water as a part of fastidious menu.

    I do not know whether she was the nice lady who brought the Communist Military Spy over to Wellington and installed him into our Parliament, as part and parcel of the Official Mob of the National Party. But if she is – she has no chance whatever of becoming a deputy anything. Zilch, Nein .Zero, Nihil. Mrs Collins could easily be a mouth piece for her Chinese counterparts.

    The National Party has never advised us. it is all hush hush – and Hush The Magic Dragon.

    Nothing adds up with Lady Judith. Absolutely Nothing. Like Simom she will state that "No worker shall drink NZ unpolluted fresh Water. We are sending it to China. They are not paying for it"

    You ratbag Simon. You ratbag Mrs Collins.

    • woodart 10.1

      yes, the party of the angry old white man has been taken over. harry, down on the farm, has been sidelined by flash harry, just in from overseas….

  11. cleangreen 11

    Observer Tokoroa,

    National equals = rort, pillage and steal.

  12. Puckish Rogue 12

    I didn't have a lot of slushies this summer gone (we didn't order any diet cordials) but the ones I did have were really good

    Mind you a couple of my collegues certainly more than made up for my lack of consumption by their own efforts

    At least now I have a real reason to want my Lady D'Arbancollins to take over from Bridges

  13. cleangreen 13

    “Simple Simon goes to the fair” was it his boss propagandist Steven Joyce???
    Who did Simple Simon meet while going to the fair?

    The rhyme is as follows;

    Simple Simon met a pieman,
    Going to the fair;
    Says Simple Simon to the pieman,
    Let me taste your ware.
    Says the pieman to Simple Simon,
    Show me first your penny;
    Says Simple Simon to the pieman,
    Indeed I have not any.
    Simple Simon went a-fishing,
    For to catch a whale;
    All the water he had got,
    Was in his mother’s pail.
    Simple Simon went to look
    If plums grew on a thistle;
    He pricked his fingers very much,
    Which made poor Simon whistle.[1]
    He went for water in a sieve
    But soon it all fell through
    And now poor Simple Simon
    Bids you all adieu![2]

  14. A 14

    Yeah I guess it's justifiable.

    Does anyone else here care that we have women prisoners particularly anything over petite size who can't afford a proper bra due to the limited clothing budget? It wouldn't happen in a men's prison.

    My point is that if that money was alocated in an either/or choice between helping women OR providing slushie machines (seriously can't you just get a block of ice out of the freezer that's already there?) the women would have lost out. Ongoing needs of women are secondary to transient needs of guards.

    • Puckish Rogue 14.1

      "Ongoing needs of women are secondary to transient needs of guards."

      I work with a number of women corrections officers so the slushie benefits women as well also its Corrections Officers not guards but yes Correction Officers needs should take precedence over prisoner needs

      "My point is that if that money was alocated in an either/or choice between helping women OR providing slushie machines (seriously can't you just get a block of ice out of the freezer that's already there?) the women would have lost out."

      Its not so why even bring it up and do you mean we get a block of ice and what, shave it down ourselves?

      What we do is sometimes quite full on, a job not really comparable to many others so when the temperature hits late 20s and above and we've been outside walking prisoners to classes or back from work areas or to the library or finished doing numerous rub downs or dealing with a prisoners that really don't like being told no (to put it mildly) or whatever do we really only deserve a grudging "I guess it's justifiable"

  15. cleangreen 15

    Here is an example of Simon Bridges “environmental policy” he must have kept in the locker while in Government working with Judith Collins “the orient queen” and the pair were obviously working with the orient over sending our rubbish for “recycling”


    Z says; – “China refuses to buy our recycling anymore so mostly they end up in Malaysia in a black market for recycling that nobody else in the world wants. – In the end landfill or ocean.”

    I say this;

    Yes that is obviously Simon Bridges ‘environmental policy’ he said National had one today on News hub and TV one so if we haven’t seen it announced this must be part of it he put in place with Judith before they left government.

    • Shadrach 15.1

      So you tell a lie, get called on it by James, modify your wording to worm out, get called on that, and now double down on your lie. Slimy, slimy, slimy.

  16. DirkDirkin 16

    This is a prelude to how National will treat workers if they ever become Govt again

  17. Siobhan 17

    Anyone know what ended up happened at Rimutaka with its oh so hip container cells that had no airconditioning or ventilation?

    Though given Corrections Minister Kelvin Daviss statement that he was yet to visit Rimutaka, "so have yet to form a view".[but]"I expect all prison cells to be fit for purpose, and Corrections advise me those units are." , I'm assuming its tough luck for those particular prisoners.

    As always. its a continuation of a situation created by National but ticked off as being just fine by Labour…so business as usual I guess.


    • greywarshark 17.1

      How about writing to Kelvin Davis advising about this and asking him if the standard is high enough for cells, and Corrections! You will get a confirmatory answer anyway, so goes on record, but they are too busy to have correspondence with peeps in most cases I think. Or like to give that air of busyness you get from twitter, fb.

  18. Obersever Tokoroa 18

    CleanGreen – you are laying down the Ratbags that are National. Putrid, shifty, miserable, Rental Rubbish Filth.

    DidrkDirkin too. Never ever trust a Wealthy Nationalist. Never ever trust the troublesome Mrs Collins. Not even John Key could trust her. And that is saying a Lot.

    She exists to do Cartwheels with the Truth. As does every single person attached to National!

    When Treasury gets down to some serious work – and when the Minister for Justice wanders through the strange taxes “paid” by the Wealthy – when all persons have to declare their Finances –

    Then there will be Justice. The Prisons will overflow with Rats.

  19. New view 19

    All these comments read like lefty BS to me. Not a sensible comment anywhere. I can’t think of too many other work areas if any that require sugar flavoured water readily available for staff. Good water coolers yes but Lolly water. Please. I don’t see Mister Whippy employed to make the road side workers cooler. It’s BS, and putting the boot into National isn’t the answer. I guess when you’re spending other people’s money it’s ok.

    • Puckish Rogue 19.1

      Being that I

      A. Vote National (except that one time I voted Act…)

      B. Think Judith Collins should be the PM of NZ

      C. Currently a Corrections Officer

      You'll agree that I'm not a lefty by any stretch of the imagination. Its not BS because it gets hot in the yards and I mean really hot, we're talking more than 30 plus and we have to wear heavy vests, boots, trousers and what not

      We can't just stay in the air con (if you have it where you are) office all day because we have to check on the prisoners, we have to make sure they're all right because we have a duty of care, we can't just nip down to the shops or indeed we can't just take off from our work place

      You can't think of too many other work areas if any that require sugar flavoured water readily available for staff, well thats not surprising because we literally (and I do mean literally) look after the very worst this country has to offer.

      We look after child molesters, murderers, rapists, wife beaters, child beaters, drug dealers, gangsters etc etc

      Other professions deal with people like this as well but none deal with them all day, every day like we do

      Is a slushie on a hot day really that big a deal?

      • New view 19.1.1

        PR I’m not disputing it’s hot where you work. I’ve worked in plenty of hot places too.good cool water would be way better for you. Or do you feel you need sweet incentive to do your job. I would have thought it was unnecessary and would be against it no matter what political parties were in Government. Just my opinion but the snarky anti National comments that don’t add anything sensible to the debate was mainly my reason for poking my oar in.

        • Puckish Rogue

          No we don't "need" a slushie to do our jobs however having a slushie on a hot day after some dick bags been telling you how much of an arsehole you are is certainly a better experience then having a glass of water and given how little money it is why would you be so churlish as to not want us to have it

          • In Vino

            PR – I think this is the first time I have ever sympathised with you, so I thought I would express support.

            But I worry about your taste in women…

      • Ankerrawshark 19.1.2

        Gosh PR. Huge respect for the job you do. Have always thought it must be very challenging and you are really performing a huge service to the community. Yes and I know we need to find better alternatives to prison, but meanwhile Pr and his colleagues doing a difficult hands on job.

        i think if I was a corrections officer I would feel pretty gutted that anyone would begrudge me an iced drink when I am working in hot, tough conditions…..

        think of all all the perks that people earning the big salaries get and that would include Simon. Really disgusted that anyone would begrudge this expense.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Its not all that bad, I mean I work work with some great people (plenty of black humour if you like that kind of thing which I do) always willing to help

          Its just such a small, petty thing to get worked up over you know

          • ankerawshark

            Glad there are somegood things about the job for you PR. And black or gallows humour can be a real life saver in those situations.

            I am glad you guys got the slushee. My only concern would be the sugar, but I would never begrudge people doing what I call the "real" work a small thing like that.

            The machines are likely to last for some time too.

            • Puckish Rogue

              I have reservations about the amount of sugar as well (I'm pushing for a diet syrup next summer) so I limit myself to two – three sugary drinks a day

              • ankerawshark

                They will still be able to use the machines with low sugar or sugar free stuff, I am sure.

    • Obersever Tokoroa 19.2

      Sick View

      Oh My – National have released another pimpled child from their cages.

      When will they ever grow up ? I suppose if they spend a little time on mum's lap they might get a bit of wisdom. But it's going to be a bit of a struggle.

      • New view 19.2.1

        Ah OT. I wondered how long it would take. I read you comments mostly to see whether they are going to change. I try and sift through the abusive potty language you use to find anything of value. Your hatred of National is fine but your continued nasty unintelligible comments don’t really add anything to these forums that are here so we can supposedly discuss topics in a sensible way. Cheers.

        • In Vino

          New View, your linguistic style reminds me of someone… Chuck maybe?

          You have obviously read a lot of OT's comments here. Are you sure you are not 'New Name' rather than 'New View?

          • New view

            Just new view I’m afraid. Real name Graeme Holt. A National voter that likes some of Labour’s policies but am continually bemused at how MMP has hamstrung their implementation. The slushy thing is a distraction. Of course The COL should sort out policy together but labour’s leadership isn’t strong enough to reflect the fact that they are the larger and in theory more influential partner. Labour supporters here should scrutinise their own parties bungling performance to date and forget about the last nine years and the dying flayed carcass that is Simon Bridges.

    • cleangreen 19.3

      NEW off the boat to it appears.

  20. Chris 20

    Interesting it's the leader speaking up on such a matter. So desperate for points. Where's their corrections spokesperson? Such a cul de sac of a topic.

  21. fender 21

    Don't you worry Simon, everyone can tell you're on thin ice and will soon get your very own yellow slushie..

  22. JustMe 22

    One just cannot take Simon Bridges seriously because everytime he speaks he sounds like an idiot.

    Whilst he was in the previous National government there was not a peep out of him over the mis-spending National did to a greater degree than just the Flag Referendum. There was the 34 beemers with bum warming seats. The mansion in Hawaii and the apartment in New York. The doors in parliament. And where the heck is the accountability for donating $10million of NZ taxpayers money to the Clinton Foundation????!!!

    Where was Simon Bridges whilst all this msi-spending was going on????!!!!

    It’s amazing Bridges is finding fault with the spending of the Coalition government but he has turned a blind eye to all the mis-spending the previous National government did.

    Bridges is being a hypocrite. He is like a Village Idiot now and would do well on Tui Billboard adverts.

  23. Jackel 23

    Bridges goes all mushy over slushies in the cushy. Is this an attempt by national to be funny to the punters or something? Sorry Tories you'll have to do better than that. Key's long gone, the stupid vote is now sewn up with Labour and Ardern. I hope those opposition seats you're in are comfortable, you might be there a while.

  24. UncookedSelachimorpha 24

    Labour should use their power to boldly address the major issues in NZ – e.g. Actually just build enough state houses to end the housing crisis – use kiwibank to smash private bank profits – increase the minimum wage to the living wage immediately – scrap the appalling clawbacks when beneficiaries earn tiny amounts etc.

    Otherwise they will just fritter NZ's time arguing over who is a slightly better 'manager' of the neoliberal project – and this current "issue" is an example of that.

  25. Stuart Munro. 25

    Bridges really isn't very good at this game. He should have asked why nurses and teachers don't get slushies too – that might have made the government uncomfortable.

    • Puckish Rogue 25.1

      He shouldn't because the easy answer is that we all do different jobs (though no less important) with vastly different environmental concerns

      • Stuart Munro. 25.1.1

        Yeah – but if he's constantly chasing parked cars he needs to figure out how to catch them. Nurses and teachers are already in somewhat strained relations with the government – although Simon isn't a particularly credible slushy provider, they might be persuaded that their needs are no less than those of Corrections officers. Police might be susceptible to the argument too. The object is for someone other than Simon to pick up the argument and agree with him – if he can't achieve that, better he keeps his mouth shut.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Better he does a Little and hand the reigns over to Jude

          • Stuart Munro.

            Might be Mitchell/Bennet in the end – I don't see either reversing the slide though.

  26. Jenny - How to get there? 26

    The Simon Bridges Slushy, made with blueberries and with just a hint of sour grapes. Garnished with a slice of lemon.

    The Prime Minister, Slushy, raspberry with a splash of passion fruit. Garnished with a maraschino cherry

    The Jame Shaw Slushy, Mint and lime garnished with a sprig of parsley and stirred with a shaved celery stick.

    The Winston Peters Slushy, liquorice flavouring with a big dollop of molasses. Served in a heavy glass tumbler. NO trimmings.

    The David Seymore, Slushy mostly iced water, with a just a drizzle of treacle to provide a little colour. Garnished with a tiny solid gold umbrella and a plastic straw pulled from a turtles nose.

    Gentlefem raise your glasses

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