Unanswered questions

Written By: - Date published: 8:45 am, March 29th, 2012 - 96 comments
Categories: ACC, Judith Collins - Tags: , , ,

Why did Collins print a copy of the Boag email? Who else saw it or was informed of its contents? If she didn’t give the information to Lusk or Slater, how did it get to the Herald?

It is interesting that Slater and Lusk, under their joint pseudonym Whaleoil, haven’t denied being involved in the Boag email getting to the Herald. If they weren’t involved, why did they run hard on the Pullar issue with an anti-Boag angle from Day 1?

Does Collins want us to believe ACC leaked to the Herald?

How long does Collins thinks she can hold out?

96 comments on “Unanswered questions”

  1. toad 1

    Unlike Smith, Collins ain’t going to go quietly.

    ACC Minister Judith Collins says she’s taking defamation proceedings against two Labour MPs and a news organisation.

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Collins-launches-defamation-cases-over-ACC-scandal/tabid/1607/articleID/248463/Default.aspx#ixzz1qRYeRDeP

    • Enough is Enough 1.1

      It is a lousy attempt to shut down the debate and scare the media.

      Lange v Atkinson – nuff said

      • ghostwhowalksnz 1.1.1

        Totally different situation. One persons opinion on a minor side issue. That is Lange’s work ethic.

        The verdict should work against Collins, as she is a politician and the comments are ‘honest opinion’.
        Lange didnt win the case dont forget

        Cant see her getting a case before a judge here. But of course that is the point.
        This ploy is straight out of the playbook Keys close advisors used in the teatapes saga

        • Enough is Enough 1.1.1.1

          Well done Ghost, clap clap.

          That is my point. That is why I said nuff said. Her claim won’t see the light of day.

    • The Herald refers to “one media outlet”. She wouldn’t name it. Could be TV. Could be radio. Could be print. Or it could be online.

      • Pascal's bookie 1.2.1

        Again Pete. I’m not sure I follow what you are trying to say with this comment.

        It looks very much like your earlier comment on this matter where you refered to ‘a lawyer’.

        Some people might think you were making some sort of barbed point here and there, perhaps trying to shut down debate or what have you.

        Such thoughts would be easily dispelled if you could be a little more transparent.

        • mickysavage 1.2.1.1

          Yeah Petey
           
          Put up or shut up.

          • King Kong 1.2.1.1.1

            I have also heard a whisper that this site is being looked at for a suit to be taken.

            [lprent: It would amuse me. However I suspect that it isn’t likely. ]

            • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.1.1.1

              How is a website supposed to appear in court??? LOL

              • King Kong

                Excellent point. Perhaps you might pass this defensive masterstroke onto Kim Dotcoms lawyers.

                • ghostwhowalksnz

                  Rubbish.
                  Dotcom is being charged on criminal offences which involve ‘business methods’.
                  No comparison

                  • King Kong

                    My apologies. I didn’t realise that charges around “business methods” were the only way you could get operators of websites into court.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    A point too technical for KK to grasp it seems, since he drew the irrelevant parallel.

                    • ghostwhowalksnz

                      Not to worry, Stuff is reporting its Mallard, Little and Radio NZ

                      Its funny how a lot of people dont know anything about US law and Kim Dotcom charges. Maybe the criminal charges would be a clue ?

                    • infused

                      CV, you’re very naive if you don’t think this place could be bought before the courts.

                      Queue: LPENT.

                    • lprent []

                      🙂 Happy to oblige..

                      Of course it can. Anyone who wishes to create legal precedent and a legal opinion about blogs can pull the trust into a court. But the likelihood is that it isn’t a particularly productive or even legally viable proposition for a politician. The most likely reason would be to force some kind of disclosure rather than an actual intent to go to trial.

                      Of course disclosure is a two way street. There are lots of questions I’d like to ask most politicians with the court enforcing it. On the other hand I suspect that it’d be hard for anyone to figure out what is happening in this system without my active cooperation.

          • Pete George 1.2.1.1.2

            Funny you should say that Greg. Have you any evidence? You haven’t put up yet, have you.

            Is it just “quacks like a duck, must be working for Mallard”?

            • mickysavage 1.2.1.1.2.1

              All in good time Petey.

            • King Kong 1.2.1.1.2.2

              lprent, just trying to get the gist of what you are implying. Are you saying that if the anonymous authors here get outed as a result of a court action you would out the right wing commentators on this site?

              [lprent: Read the policy section marked privacy. Is there any equivocation in that statement?

              And looking through the context, I can’t see where you could have gotten that from in anything that I have said. Please explain before I decide to ban you for putting words into my mouth. ]

              • King Kong

                If you didn’t change your post at any stage then neither can I. Very weird as I certainly saw something yesterday which inspired my reply and I wasn’t intentionally being facetious.

                [lprent: Not my post. And the only comment I have in that post above your one I can’t recall editing. I’m doing comments between compiles, tests, and thinking time which tend jump my attention around while writing. I sometimes come back to fix my errors – usually within the 8 minutes re-edit. ]

      • Rosemary 1.2.2

        Yet another hopelessly irrelevant and uninsightful contribution from Wormtongue. How the hell does your wife cope?

  2. BLiP 2

    Delish.

    Note to self: contact broker with instructions to go long on popcorn futures.

  3. ghostwhowalksnz 3

    Printing the email is how Collins sent it to the PMs office who are the ones behind the smear campaign.

    Clever lady Bronwyn Pullar , she used tracking software to tell her when and where her email was being sent ( but Collins was a bit more wary and thus used the print button)
    ” Ms Pullar forwarded the email using computer software that allows her to track each time her email has been opened and who it is subsequently forwarded to.”
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/6655745/ACC-worker-re-viewed-leaked-Smith-letter

    • toad 3.1

      Yeah, but what does it say about ACC’s ICT security that it allows someone to install malware on their system.

      • ghostwhowalksnz 3.1.1

        Its not malware. You are just spouting the Oily Orcas lines. Outlook has feed back software which comes standard which will tell you when your email is opened by the recipient. Its that malware?

      • Lanthanide 3.1.2

        I’ve never heard of this email tracking software before either, but I found this after a quick google: http://www.didtheyreadit.com/

        Doesn’t require any malware on anyone’s computer, it simply relies on existing email protocols to generate a return email. This itself could be blocked if the firewall was deliberately set up to do so, but they say on their FAQ page that testing shows it works 98% of the time.

        Wikipedia has got a bit of an article on email tracking, I didn’t read it in detail but it seems a little light on the exact specifics of how it works in general.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 3.1.2.1

          This is the best description Ive seen .
          The “embedded code” is usually just a linked 1×1 pixel image, so when you open the e-mail on an e-mail client like Outlook, the image is “shown”, triggering the download of the image from the web server. The act of requesting the image reveals all sorts of information to the web server the request is made to.

          Its a bit like the ads on web sites. The email links to the server that has the image. They know some of your info from this and they pass it back to you.

          • Reality Bytes 3.1.2.1.1

            Pro-tip; a really simple way to block this behavior from certain ads/sources completely, is to add an entry to your “hosts” file and set the offending url to your own computers ip (127.0.0.1), then the ‘request’ to download the ad or pixel tracking image or whatever goes nowhere since it tries to download it from your own pc.

            I won’t go into exact details as it is a bit different depending on your OS, but it is fairly easy to do, a quick google on: using hosts file to block urls” or similar should give hundreds of articles explaining it.

            One benefit of this method is you don’t have to install any additional software, which could ironically have malware present anyway if not carefully chosen.

            • ghostwhowalksnz 3.1.2.1.1.1

              Thanks.
              I tried this a while back via a site which supplies a big list of sites to copy to your hosts file.
              Didn’t make any difference
              I had thought the use of this software is rife in government and was the cause of Mapp leaving politics so early.

              • Reality Bytes

                Possibly the list was out of date or not relevant to the sites you were visiting. You can inspect the page source (or even better use a tool like firebug – right click inspect element with firebug) to figure out where the ads are referring your browser to. I don’t block any ads here on The Standard as I appreciate it possibly helps fund the site, and they are sometimes of interest to me anyway, but other sites I frequent have swathes of irrelevant junk, that at the very least waste a lot of my bandwidth.

        • lprent 3.1.2.2

          Wouldn’t rely on it. Every mail server I have set up, I have told it to strip the headers. Think of the extra loads on the systems.

          Just another redundant protocol as far as I am concerned.

          • Lanthanide 3.1.2.2.1

            Yeah, I suspected the 98% was self-servingly high.

            But the tracking via images method pointed out by ghost is another possibility; not sure that that could tell you how long someone had been reading the email though, as the “didtheyreadit” site claims they can do.

      • mickysavage 3.1.3

        It could be a red herring too.

        There seem to be three relevant documents:

        1.  The Boag/Collins email.
        2.  The Smith/Pullar letter where he testified as to her medical condition.
        3.  The Smith/Lotu Iiga letter where he made some rather mundane comments. 

        The Herald article published on March 18 appears to refer only to the Boag/Collins email and not the other letters.   The reference to “the day before the story broke” is the day before the Smith/Pullar letter came to light.

        The question ought to be asked, did anyone in the Minister of ACC’s office access the letter before March 20 and if so when? 

  4. Jimmie 4

    I think one answer Master Eddie is found in this stuff article:

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

    Unfortunately an ex case manager with a bone to pick is a much more likely culprit than Ms Collins to have leaked the letter.

    Perhaps all the gnashing of teeth on yesterday’s thread was all for nought if it turns out that this case manager was the source for the media – but I guess the words ‘We were Wrong’ will never be a thread headline on this blog…….lol

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 4.1

      Or, the letter referred to in your story is a completely different letter to the email from Boag in question.

    • Tom Gould 4.2

      Typical Tory spray diversion, just like the fake defamation threat. Getting too close for comfort, clearly.

      • TT 4.2.1

        Spot on. The tories always get aggressive when they’re about to be found out. Collins days are numbered, and the dominos continue to fall. Andrew Little was right on the money when he says this crime goes right to the top of the NACT hierarchy. The PM is simply attempting to destroy ACC so it can be sold to the private sector, with most of the profits heading straight into the NACT ministers back pockets.

      • Anne 4.2.2

        @ Tom Gould
        My immediate reaction. Try to terrorise Mallard and co. and sections of the media. That might work for the media but it will only incite Mallard and Co. to dig further because they know they’re on to something!

        And I’ll make a prediction: part of the story will eventually lead to the PM’s department.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 4.2.2.1

          You are right , these sort of things are done at the top level.
          The panic has set in now it hasnt gone away when Smith resigned and Key has to come back ….eventually from his holiday in France

      • ianmac 4.2.3

        Judith Collins is issuing a Defamation Case against 2 Labour MPs and a news org. See Toad at 1.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 4.2.3.1

          Hasnt a hope of succeeding .

          Lange v Atkinson means you can have ‘honest opinions’ about politicians that would be defamatory.

    • toad 4.3

      Different letter/email, Jimmie. You are talking about the one Nick Smith wrote that cost him his job. The one in question in this post is the one Boag sent to Collins.

    • Dean 4.4

      you’ve confused two totally separate emails – the Smith email, which led to his resignation and the Boag email, which went to Collins and somehow ended up in the Herald’s hands.

  5. Jimmie 5

    Oh and it mentions that Ms Pullar deliberately introduced malware into the ACC email system in order to keep tabs on who looked at her email – this is getting dirtier by the day and unfortunately Ms Pullar is not looking the injured saint she was trying to make herself out to be.

    Also with a $1 million payout form a private insurer I fail to see why the ‘left’ in general are sticking up for her – a classic rich prick if you ask me – not happy with that she wanted more from ACC and it appears would stoop to hacking and alleged indirect blackmail to get more.

    Heck gotta be a classic rick prick – the left should be knocking her for 6.

    [it is the right of ACC clients to privacy, not the scummy Pullar that its being defended. JH]

    • Lanthanide 5.1

      See my reply at 3.1.2, Jimmie, no malware is required for email tracking.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 5.2

      Its not ‘wanting more’ from ACC. Its getting the coverage she is entitled to ( and paid for). The ACC coverage seems to be more the rehab services

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 5.3

      Oh too funny Jimmie, your comment is another perfect example of the self-serving and vengeful way you lot do politics: it’s all about trying to run people down and character assassination, rather than the principles involved.

      A crime (breach of privacy) has been committed by someone high up in ACC, or high up in government, but you don’t want us looking there, do you?

  6. Blue 6

    It seems perfectly obvious that Judith Collins did not use any means of electronic communication to get the information out there. She knows full well that doing so would be stupid because it’s completely traceable.

    Pullar’s email tracking software is useless in this case, as will be any forensic examination of computers.

    As long as Crusher is getting litigation-happy, will she sue Fran O’Sullivan for being the first to put in print that it was her who leaked Bronwyn Pullar’s name?

    Fran vs Crusher would be a fantastic battle.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 6.1

      There is still a fax ! She printed it remember and she has got this info out all ready .
      Fax machines have logs as well. Expect it to be erased by now.

      • McFlock 6.1.1

        But of course fax machines would work through the enterprise PABX phone system, which would also have logs. And those logs would not be as easily erasable, given that they’re needed for inter-departmental accounting. So just look for the call from the fax line to whichever media company/idiot blogger broke the story.

  7. Lanthanide 7

    iPredict now have contracts on this: https://www.ipredict.co.nz/app.php?do=browse&cat=561

    • Anne 7.1

      ACC Official… running @ 51.7% probability.
      Beehive Staffer… @ 46.7%.
      Not a lot in it.

      Oh, that it could be so simple.
      I’ll wager a bet whoever was responsible was under instruction from someone else.

      • Pascal's bookie 7.1.1

        Beehive staffer now up to 63%.

        • Dv 7.1.1.1

          The movements on ipredict are interesting because ther are no controls on insider trading. In theory the leaker could buy a bunch and then confess.

  8. tsmithfield 8

    I notice that Pullar herself being the source of the leak is at a reasonably healthy 28%.

    That was the point I made yesterday that no-one seemed to pick up on.

    What if Boag had cc’d her letter to Pullar, and Pullar had included it in her correspondence to someone else? There is already evidence that she has been very prolific and wide ranging in the people she was corresponding to. So it is quite possible it has got into someone elses hands that no-one here has even considered.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 8.1

      Have you seen the volume, ONE share at a time maybe less than 10 all up. Its a penny dreadful

      • tsmithfield 8.1.1

        “Have you seen the volume, ONE share at a time maybe less than 10 all up. Its a penny dreadful”

        If there is such low certainty about this probability, then the current level will be quickly short-sold down to a single digit percentage I expect.

    • Craig Glen Eden 8.2

      John Keys pixies at the bottom of his garden tsmithfield strikes again? Next time you are in that garden can you ask them where are those 170,000 jobs Key and English go on about.

      • Hami Shearlie 8.2.1

        You’ll find the 170,000 jobs at the end of the Nact rainbow along with the leprauchaun(played to great effect by Michael Woodhouse)!

  9. Deb 9

    I would be very afraid had I cast aspersions on or remotely defamed Ms Collins. She may be many things, but legally stupid she is not

    • Frida 9.1

      @Deb ” legally stupid she is not”

      Actually, I’ve heard the opposite from lawyers who used to come up against her in practice. Thick as a plank are statements I’ve heard used frequently.

      • Deb 9.1.1

        As a former VP of the NZ Law Society and President of the ADLS, my money would be on Collins having more than just a passing knowledge of the NZ defamation laws.

        What about some examples of her being as “thick as a plank” rather than just alleged comments from alleged lawyers who have “come up against her”.

        • Frida 9.1.1.1

          @Deb, ever heard of the defamation defence “honest opinion”?! That’s what the statements made to me were. Okay?

          Equally, what’s your evidence that being VP of NZLS and President of ADLS makes her an expert in defamation law or, for that matter, particularly legally smart? In my experience, all those positions show is that the lawyer concerned is good at networking and schmoozing. No reflection on legal ability!

          As others have pointed out already, by running to the media this morning and threatening to sue, Collins has already shown she has less than a passing acquaintance with Lange v Atkinson.

          I stand by my origincal comments. This is blatant bullying of the ilk we have seen many times with this Government, and most blatantly demonstrated by the Ambrose fiasco.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 9.1.1.2

          Just goes to show she was a politician before getting into parliament. These sort of jobs prove she isnt the sharpest knife in the drawer.

          • lprent 9.1.1.2.1

            Yep. A bit like how programmers like to try to ‘promote’ the people who aren’t that good away from their habits of screwing up code and into management where their ego and lack of ability causes less of a problem. There is nothing like cleaning up someone else’s poorly thought through constructions to start envisaging where they could be better employed.

      • Inventory2 9.1.2

        Comments from mickysavage perhaps? That’d be REALLY independant!

    • Pascal's bookie 9.2

      Defamation has a pretty high legal hurdle to jump WRT politicians in NZ.

      Her press release is from the government and signed as minister. I guess that means the taxpayer will be picking up the tab.

      I strongly suspect that the case will never go to court, and if it does, she will lose. In the meantime she will use the case as an excuse not to answer any questions.

    • Ross 9.3

      Sorry to say, Deb, but you are wrong. If you wanted a lawyer, Collins would be the last person I’d approach. She doesn’t seem to know the law.

      http://www.medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=505

  10. Sarah 10

    If Pullar was hacking by using a read receipt function on her emails, then everyone using the a read receipt function of Outlook would be considered to be hacking.

    This is laughable. We need more police to arrest every New Zealander using an email read notification system.

    • Deb 10.1

      Slightly more than a “read receipt”. A “read receipt” gives the reader the option not to respond to the sender. Pullar’s malware is very much more pernicious and invasive.

      • Kotahi Tane Huna 10.1.1

        lol got a link to back that up? – and please don’t waste my time with Mr. Oil.

        But just to humour you for a moment, say that’s all true, how does it affect the fact that someone illegally copied Michelle Boag’s email to Collins?

        That’s what we need to know – who broke the law? Was it someone at ACC, or someone donkey deep in the National Party?

      • ghostwhowalksnz 10.1.2

        Rubbish
        “The “embedded code” is usually just a linked 1×1 pixel image, so when you open the e-mail on an e-mail client like Outlook, the image is “shown”, triggering the download of the image from the web server. The act of requesting the image reveals all sorts of information to the web server the request is made to.”

        Its not too different from a ‘cookie’
        And all those ads on websites do much the same thing.

        • Reality Bytes 10.1.2.1

          All the more reason to have ‘download images’ off by default in your email client.

  11. bad12 11

    There,s a debate inherent in the person(s) responsible for leaking, (a hard-copy),of Boag,s email to Crusher being under instructions from another or not,

    Our view is that Captain Panic Pants and able subordinates,Hansel and Gretel when it comes to matters of public perception and media management of such issues might just be telling Slippery whats going to happen and how He should publicly respond to Their media machinations….

  12. HelensYourAunty 12

    EDDIE on Monday 26th March

    “Collins has imitated her fellow ministers by leaking Pullar’s private details in revenge.”

    Libel.

    • Frida 12.1

      hmmm you clearly know what you’re talking about Aunty – NOT. There’s been no such thing as “libel” in NZ law for decades. Care to try and make your point again?

      Meantime, have a read of Lange v Atkinson.

  13. Fortran 13

    Looks as though an ACC staffer may be in this up to her armpits ?

    • Ross 13.1

      The ACC staffer accessed a letter from Nick Smith, but that isn’t the issue here. It’s about the email from Boag to Collins.

      • Dean 13.1.1

        do you think that righties like Fortran are genuinely so easily confused by the existence of multiple emails or they’re just trying to distract?

        • McFlock 13.1.1.1

          50:50 is my bet – half are pretending to be that dumb, and the other half really are that dumb.

  14. ianmac 14

    I just went back to listen to National Radio interviews recorded this morning about the ACC leak. They are still available for downloading.
    The first was with Trevor Mallard:
    [audio src="http://podcast.radionz.co.nz/mnr/mnr-20120329-0721-labour_claims_judith_collins_is_the_source_of_acc_leak-048.mp3" /]

    The second was a Reporters round-up with comments from Little and Mallard.
    [audio src="http://podcast.radionz.co.nz/mnr/mnr-20120329-0719-labour_says_collins_most_likely_the_source_of_acc_leak-048.mp3" /]

    If they are comments subject to a Defamation case I’m damned if I can hear any defamation at all. Were there some other interviews?

  15. bad12 15

    Crusher Collins sure has dancing upon the head of a pin down to an art form, we have to wonder does She take lessons or does such a skill come naturally,

    The two pertinent questions here would still seem to reside in the 1 hard copy of the Boag email that Crusher has admitted to having caused to have been made???

    The question marks above are for obvious reasons as far as our genuine belief is garnered from media reports is that Crusher has stated that ”Her office” had made 1 hard copy of the Boag email,

    Question 1 has to be ”why the hard copy Crusher”???,unless of course the 9th floor has given the directive to one and all that They will handle EVERYTHING to do with Pullar and anything recieved by anyone was to go straight up to the 9th floor,

    Question 2 has to be (still),”who was the hard copy of the Boag email to Crusher given to, we believe Crusher when She says SHE never leaked the email (or its details) to the media,but, attempting to take the vows of silence this far into the saga is unacceptable as is the House Speaker allowing Her to not answer specific questions put to her about the printing and destination of that hard copy of the Boag email,

    Incidentally Slippery has reportedly expressed His 100% support for His Minister keeping it zipped,we wouldnt believe for a minute that thats coz She will be gone in seconds if She drops Him or the minions on the 9th floor in it…

  16. QoT 16

    Just to completely ignore the details of the case, I’m utterly fixated on why the hell people print emails at all … much less when they’re Cabinet Ministers. Wasn’t it meant to be Brash’s penchant for printing all his emails (or getting them printed for him) which led to The Hollow Men?

    • Anita 16.1

      I see printed emails all the time. I even print some of them myself 🙂

      Most commonly I see emailed printed by PAs for senior managers and neatly filed – a folder for urgent, a folder for “by tomorrow”, a folder for signing, and so on. All the senior managers I know are perfectly capable of reading and replying to their emails online, but don’t spend that much time in front of their computers, so neatly organised printed emails combined with letters, memos etc for reading during quiet patches, between meetings, on flights, and so on. For me to have a GM’s PA print one of my emails and the attached letter and put it in a folder marked “urgent” is a completely reliable way of getting a signed letter dropped on my desk by the PA within a couple of hours.

      I also print emails occasionally, today I took two emails to a meeting – one contained the instructions for the conference call, the other was the two pages of bullet points we needed to discuss, and someone who couldn’t attend’s feedback for inclusion. I also have a stack of paper on my desk at the moment which is all the feedback I’ve had on a report I’m working on – including each email, each hand scribbled on copy, and my notes of discussions I’ve had. They’re all highlighted to show which points have been incorporated and which have been completely dealt with. If I’m incorporating eight lots of feedback on a single document I need to see each set of feedback side by side. They will live in that pile until the report is finally signed off.

      So, I can imagine two very simple and normal scenarios for how that email got printed.

      1) Collins was give a folder of miscellaneous ACC correspondence along with all her other things to read and deal with as she left the office. Between her office in Wellington, her home in Auckland, and the office in Wellington again she looked at each piece and wrote on it what should happen. So the email now exists in paper form with a note saying “forward to X and Y”. The person that acted on those instructions filed the printed email in a folder of ACC related correspondence in case they ever needed to check back.

      2) Collins met with one of her support staff for 30 minutes, the support staff member had printed out all the emails they couldn’t work out how to handle and brought copies of the letters in the same state. They went through the pile quickly, one by one, with Collins writing a note on each about how to handle it “accept invitation”, “forward to X”, “refer to Y”, “polite refusal”.After it had been handled it was filed along with the rest of the stuff.

      • QoT 16.1.1

        Well that’s just fair and reasonable, then. But I still just wince at the thought of all that basically-untraceable paper lying around …

        • Anita 16.1.1.1

          Some agencies use printers which allow tracing of printed material, but it’s uncommon. I have no idea if that is true in Minister’s offices.

          • Pascal's bookie 16.1.1.1.1

            Do you think that the forensics the PC is going to do will find out if other recpients printed it out?

            • Anita 16.1.1.1.1.1

              It wouldn’t surprise me at all if some of the other known recipients printed it.

              What the PC’s forensics will find depends partly on how stupid or careless the leaker(s) were, how much access the PC has to their systems, how their systems were set up, and how good the investigators are. I’m betting that the leaker(s) weren’t stupid or careless enough to get caught.

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  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    13 hours ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    16 hours ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 day ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    2 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    2 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    2 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    2 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    3 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    5 days ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    7 days ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago

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