Tag Archives: John Key PM

Homelessness : watching Al Jazeera on New Zealand

mischa-richter-dog-next-to-man-watching-tv-[New Yorker - condenast]Mischa Richter – The New Yorker

Received from Peter Attwooll
Friday, 5 August 2016 5:49 p.m.

Today, sitting in a comfortable lounge with the fire on, and watching TV, I turned on Al Jazeera. Lo and behold, a report came up about homelessness in New Zealand. Wow, I thought. The World looks out at what is happening here in this little country, deep in the South Pacific.

The report was on homelessness in NZ. They interviewed a large, Islander family living in a decrepit garage in Auckland. They also interviewed Bernard Hickey, Economic Commentator.

The report commented on the large homeless problem in NZ, the number up to 40,000 (from memory). Paula Bennett refused to respond to repeated calls for an interview.

The government did, what all governments do, and provided a solution for THIS family in order to avoid the immediate embarrassment and look like they are doing something.
Cynical, eh?

John Key and his National Government have got a lot to answer for. Equally, the Opposition parties have also got to provide viable solutions to bring greater equity to this country and help homeless people to get off the streets.

Al Jazeera English Published on Aug 4, 2016
Homeless in New Zealand – thousands living in garages and cars
Once a pioneer of the social welfare state, New Zealand now has over 40,000 people who are homeless, forced to live in their cars and in garages as a result of rapid house price and rent rises and a shortage of social housing. Al Jazeera correspondent Tarek Bazley visits South Auckland and meets two families – one with six children living in a derelict garage, the other who lived with three teenagers for months in their car – and charts the country’s fall from and egalitarian society to one with deep divisions of wealth.

Subscribe to our channel http://bit.ly/AJSubscribe
Follow us on Twitter https://twitter.com/AJEnglish
Find us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/aljazeera
Check our website: http://www.aljazeera.com/

homelessness_banner - Human Rights Commission [hrc.co.nz] 1homelessness via hrc.co.nz

Human Rights Commission
The Commission works for a free, fair, safe and just New Zealand, where diversity is valued and human dignity and rights are respected.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Al Jazeera, also known as JSC, is a Doha-based state-funded broadcaster owned by the Al Jazeera Media Network, which is partly funded by the House of Thani, the ruling family of Qatar.

Election Year. This post is offered in the public interest.

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Boris J knows Exactly how New Zealand came to this #KeyGovernment

“The whole EU system of regulation is so remote and opaque that the super-rich are able to use it to their advantage, to maintain their oligarchic position.”

### telegraph.co.uk 15 May 2016 • 9:20pm
Of course our City fat cats love the EU – it’s why they earn so much
By Boris Johnson
At last year’s Tory Party conference I drew attention to a worrying statistic about the way our society is changing. It is the number of times the salary of the average FTSE100 top executive exceeds that of the average – the average – employee in that company. This multiple appears to be taking off, at an extraordinary, inexplicable and frankly nostril-wrinkling rate.
Plato said no one should earn more than five times anyone else. Well, Plato would have been amazed by the growth in corporate inequality today. In 1980 the multiple was 25. By 1998 it had risen to 47. After 10 years of Tony Blair and Peter Mandelson – and their “intensely relaxed” attitude to getting “filthy rich” – the top executives of big UK firms were earning 120 times the average pay of the shop floor. Last year it was 130 times.
This year – cue a fusillade of champagne corks – the fat cats have broken through the magic 150 barrier. The average FTSE100 CEO is taking home 150 times as much as his or her average employee – and in some cases far more. Let us make no bones about it: these people have so much more money than other people in the same company that they are flying in private jets and building subterranean swimming pools, while many of their employees cannot afford to buy any kind of home at all.
Read more

Boris Johnson [theguardian.com] 1Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson (b. 19 Jun 1964) is an English politician, popular historian, and journalist who has served as Member of Parliament (MP) for Uxbridge and South Ruislip since 2015. Johnson previously served as the MP for Henley from 2001 until 2008, and as Mayor of London from 2008 to 2016. A member of the Conservative Party, Johnson considers himself a One Nation Conservative and has been described as a libertarian due to his association with both economically liberal and socially liberal policies. Born in New York City to upper-class English parents, Johnson was educated at the European School of Brussels, Ashdown House School, and Eton College. He studied Classics at Balliol College, Oxford, where he was elected President of the Oxford Union in 1986. Beginning his career in journalism at The Times, he later became The Daily Telegraph’s Brussels correspondent, with his articles exerting a strong influence on growing Eurosceptic sentiment among the British right-wing.

### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 11:22, May 16 2016
Labour leader Andrew Little: PM ‘out of touch’ with families in hardship
By Rosanna Price
Prime Minister John Key has advised families living in garages or in cars to go and see Work and Income. But Labour leader Andrew Little has called that advice “impractical”, saying Key is “out of touch” with these New Zealanders in hardship. Key’s comments come after social housing groups and community workers have called on the government to increase their supply of affordable housing. There have been reports families in Auckland have been forced to rent garages and shipping containers, with the Salvation Army estimating one in ten Auckland garages is used as a home. Social agencies say the number of families living out of their cars has increased.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: theguardian.com – Boris Johnson

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Proposed Auckland waterfront stadium stupidity

Stadiums before affordable housing, again (Dunedin, Christchurch, Auckland) – the Nuts striving to build ‘ball park’ ASSETS quickly develop own shallow pockets.

In 2006 Auckland considered building a national stadium on its waterfront, but abandoned the idea —the stadium was the Labour government’s choice for the Rugby World Cup 2011.

Auckland 2006 proposed waterfront stadium [David White - Fairfax via Stuff.co.nz]Auckland 2006 proposed waterfront stadium [Nigel Marple - Fairfax via Stuff.co.nz]David White (top) & Nigel Marple / Fairfax

Stuff.co.nz Last updated 08:02, March 21 2016
Government won’t pay for Auckland waterfront stadium, John Key says
A proposed waterfront stadium in Auckland would not be funded by the Government, Prime Minister John Key has indicated. Calls to build a CBD sports stadium have been backed by several high profile business people, including New Zealand Warriors boss Eric Watson who has offered to help pay for the project. Key told the Paul Henry Show on Monday he personally thought the waterfront stadium was a good idea, but that it shouldn’t be government-funded. “I don’t think we’ve got a great appetite for pouring money into that,” he said.
Read more

█ Paul Henry Show | NewsHub TV3
Full interview: John Key, March 21, 2016 [Video]

[click to enlarge]

NBR 24.3.16 OPINION Tim Hunter (page 2)
NBR 24.3.16 Tim Hunter - Please lord, save us from stadium enthusiasts p2 (1)

NZ Herald – the extra SORRY tales
23.3.16 Opinion: Brian Rudman: Fans too thin on ground for waterfront stadium
23.3.16 Auckland’s waterfront stadium: Look to Australia for tips, says architect
22.3.16 Iwi joins supporters of new stadium as gateway to city
21.3.16 Vodafone backs Auckland waterfront stadium
21.3.16 Opinion: What kind of stadium does Auckland need?
21.3.16 John Key: Government won’t be paying for Auckland waterfront stadium
20.3.16 Eric Watson offers to help fund downtown stadium project
20.3.16 Eric Watson: Build it and the Warriors will make it their home
19.3.16 Visions for a new national stadium
18.3.16 For and against: Waterfront stadium
18.3.16 Editorial: New stadium dream needs reality check
18.3.16 Auckland waterfront stadium could cost more than $1b project…
15.3.16 Opinion: Chris Rattue: Auckland’s waterfront stadium has to happen
15.3.16 Stadium debate: Is it time to build downtown?
15.3.16 Warriors’ boss backing waterfront stadium
15.3.16 Renewed push for new football stadium in Auckland’s CBD

Related Post:
24.7.15 Stadiums: Auckland works to limits —Dunedin, never

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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NZ flag is the NZ flag is the #NZflag [beach towel selection in context]

RNZ Toby Morris 'Make Your Own Flag' eight_col_DIY-FLAG (1)RNZ/Toby Morris — eight_col_DIY-FLAG

### radionz.co.nz
RNZ: On the Inside
OPINION: Flag failure – Where did it go wrong?
By Toby Morris
Well, that’s that. The votes are counted and at last the shambolic flag saga is finally over, banished to eternal life as a series of pub quiz trivia questions. An embarrassing phase best forgotten like a national bad haircut.
As much as I’ve always wanted a change, in the end I think we made the right choice. So why do I feel so rotten?
I had a bad feeling about it from the start, and I wasn’t alone. This time last year, anyone who has ever worked on any kind of corporate creative brief took one look at the chosen panel and their proposed process and saw that it would result in a mediocre, safe choice. It was creativity by committee, with no designers involved, and a process that allowed no room for development or refinement.
So we expected the worst, but like George W Bush said, we ‘misunderestimated’ them. Things went from worst to ‘worster’ as they lurched from one disastrous step to another. An inane and vague campaign to engage people about what they stood for led to the saddest road trip ever as the panel toured the country for public meetings with record low turnouts. No one was interested.
By the time the public was able to submit entries, the mood became more evident…. In large numbers, we were treating the flag process as a huge joke.
Read more + Cartoons

RNZ: How the world saw NZ’s flag decision
RNZ: Kiwis have their say; flag’s here to stay
RNZ: NZ flag result – how it happened
RNZ: MPs split down party lines on flag vote

NZ Herald
‘Wasteful vanity project’ ….How world reacted to flag result
Defeated PM defends $26m flag vote as critics round on him
Andrew Little: PM’s pet project has cost NZ $26m

Related Posts and Comments:
29.2.16 Jonkey a flag!
14.11.15 New Zealand Flag: 1000s of public submissions ignored by panel…
25.9.15 New Zealand Flag —symbolism
28.2.15 Campbell Live | TXT POLL: Does NZ need a new flag?

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Jonkey a flag!

nz-flag2 [flagz.co.nz]

Prime Minister John Key has warned if people vote against changing the flag they will not get another chance until New Zealand becomes a republic.

### radionz.co.nz Updated at 12:46 pm today
RNZ News
Has the PM mistaken himself for a flag?
By Finlay Macdonald
OPINION: To borrow a title from the late, great Oliver Sacks, we appear to have a prime minister who mistook himself for a flag.
John Key is now arguing that a vote against the silver fern flag in the March referendum is really a vote against him. He is echoing those commentators who have already tried to depict opposition to a new flag as simply anti-Key sentiment in red, white and blue drag.

Last chance to change flag before republic – PM
Only citizens should vote on flag change – NZ First

The flag debate, they claim, has been “politicised” by the Left out of bitterness and spite. Aside from their own absurd partisan assumptions, what those arguments can never address is the ideologically diverse nature of so much opposition to the Lockwood flag.
How else to explain the informal alliance of lifelong republicans and ageing anti-establishment boomers with monarchists and RSA traditionalists? If anything unites these camps it seems less likely to be a shared loathing of the prime minister than a nose for what you might call a false dichotomy – an unnecessary choice between two inadequate options.
Because you can say a lot of bad things about the alternative flag, but probably the worst is that it makes the current flag look good.
Read more

Related Posts and Comments:
14.11.15 New Zealand Flag: 1000s of public submissions ignored by panel…
25.9.15 New Zealand Flag —symbolism
28.2.15 Campbell Live | TXT POLL: Does NZ need a new flag?

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Tweets:

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OIA Review: Bev’s off, thank god! #politicallyblinkered #shakethattreesomemore

Updated post
Sat, 5 Dec 2015 at 1:17 p.m.

LIES and SPIN, Bev

Beverley Wakem 1 [nbr.co.nz]### NZ Herald Online 1:40 PM Wednesday Dec 2, 2015
Official Information Act review finds ‘no deliberate misuse’
By Isaac Davison – NZH political reporter
A high-level review of the Official Information Act will not uncover any widespread political interference in the release of information, its author says. The Ombudsman’s Office will release the findings from its comprehensive, year-long review next week. Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem said today that the investigation had not discovered malicious or deliberate misuse of the Act by ministers’ offices or by Government departments.

“We’ve really shaken the tree over this and haven’t been surprised by what’s fallen out,” she told a Parliamentary committee this morning.

She admitted that she had suspected political interference, but had found no hard evidence of it. Dame Beverley said people who had complained to her office could be perceiving political spin or “bad behaviour” when it did not exist, and she could not make any findings “based on hearsay”.
Read more

█ The release of the report will be Dame Beverley’s last act as Chief Ombudsman after 10 years in the role. She is being replaced by former Principal Family Court Judge Peter Boshier next week.

Gun shy ? (broken record – your 10 limp-wristed years, inter-agency OBFUSCATION, or lose your privilege, your confidence, your connections, your office budget….)

DemiLovatoVEVO Published on Oct 9, 2015
Demi Lovato – Confident (Official Video)

Sharon Murdoch (@domesticanimal) 5.12.15 Dame Beverley [Stuff.co.nz]Sharon Murdoch, Dame Beverley December 5, 2015 [Stuff.co.nz]

Related Posts and Comments:
9.11.15 Citifleet investigation: Final police report 29.10.15
5.3.15 John Key’s NZ spying on Pacific neighbours
15.1.15 New Zealand: Salmond on abuse of democratic freedoms
16.12.14 Chief Ombudsman | OIA review
24.10.14 John Key’s Godzone and the OIA
19.9.14 Chief Ombudsman Beverley Wakem to launch post-election inquiry
21.3.13 Public service causing “paralysis of democracy” with OIA requests
26.7.12 ‘The Public’s Right to Know’ – OIA Review
2.12.09 DScene – OIA requests about stadium endless?

█ For more, enter terms such as *audit nz*, *auditor general*, *citifleet*, *corruption*, *courthouse*, *cst*, *dcc*, *delta*, *department of internal affairs*, *dia*, *dvml*, *fraud*, *gambling*, *kaipara*, *nzru*, *oag*, *orfu*, *pokies*, *racing*, *rugby*, *sfo*, *stadium*, *ttcf* or *whistleblowers* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: nbr.co.nz – Beverley Wakem

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New Zealand Flag: 1000s of public submissions ignored by panel [+ Paris]

nz-flag2 [flagz.co.nz]Flags 1447374793430 [via Stuff.co.nz]

It was outside the panel’s remit to consider criticism of the process or support for the current flag……..

### ODT Online Fri, 13 Nov 2015
Readers support Mallard in flag debate
Source: NZME
Readers have weighed in to support claims by Trevor Mallard the flag referendum process is “total spin”, following analysis showing feedback from thousands of people critical of the process had been ignored by the flag consideration panel. Analysis published today on new data platform ‘Herald Insights’ shows official reports published by the flag panel had ignored thousands of public submissions – nearly a third of total feedback – that were critical of the process or supportive of retaining the current flag.
Read more

█ Herald Insights: http://insights.nzherald.co.nz/
http://insights.nzherald.co.nz/article/the-flag-debate
http://standfor.co.nz/

Related Posts and Comments:
25.9.15 New Zealand Flag —symbolism
28.2.15 Campbell Live | TXT POLL: Does NZ need a new flag?

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Images: flagz.co.nz – NZ Flag; Stuff.co.nz – Flags

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New Zealand Flag —symbolism

NZ First likens Red Peak flag to Nazi war symbols
[Source: Parliament TV via ONE News]

Denis O'Rourke  NZ First 2 [Parliament TV]Denis O'Rourke NZ First 1 [Parliament TV]

Received from TQoFE
Fri, 25 Sep 2015 at 10:43 a.m.

O'Dorke

█ Compare flags for Japan and Canada….

Red Peak, First to the Light – nice idea, bland design for our nationality ??

Red Peak flag
redpeak_1aulca1-1aulcb3 [via nz.news.yahoo.com]Images: (top) Stuff.co.nz | nz.news.yahoo.com

Related Post and Comments:
28.2.15 Campbell Live | TXT POLL: Does NZ need a new flag?

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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PROFOUND #AvoidMegaStructuresForHappyCities

Link received Tue, 21 Apr 2015 at 6:45 p.m.

### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 17:09, April 21 2015
Christchurch Convention Centre location a ‘mistake’
By Lois Cairns
Putting a convention centre in the middle of Christchurch’s city centre is a mistake, Canadian urban experimentalist Charles Montgomery says.
“If your interest is in creating rich, social, connected environments in your core you should be very wary of plans to drop mega structures into that fabric. Convention centres are notorious, because of their architectural requirements, for killing street life around their edges,” Montgomery said.
“We need to be very wary of renderings of mega structures like convention centres that are filled with cartoon people because frequently those cartoon people don’t actually appear after the structures are built.”
Read more

****

Charles Montgomery on Q+A TVI 12.4.15 - ONE NEWS [tvnz.co.nz] [screenshot]

TV1 Q + A 10:36AM Sunday April 12, 2015
The key to a happier life is in the design of our cities.
█ Video: Why sprawling, car dependent cities are making us miserable? Charles Montgomery (10:34)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Talk of replacing Southern District Health Board with commissioner

See tomorrow’s Otago Daily Times for more on SDHB.

Link received Thu, 16 Apr 2015 at 9:40 p.m.

█ Message: Snap!! – it’s also happening in Dunedin

### whaleoil.co.nz March 27, 2015 at 1:30pm
The waning of Key’s National: the arrogance and irony
By Cameron Slater
The life cycle of any political party leader is clearly understood. What we are seeing now, the vulnerable John Key, the floundering of previously successful people that surround him, and people previously loyal turning their backs on him didn’t just happen in the last four weeks. The by-election simply has made it more visible in a shorter period of time.
Read more

When John Key is out there, he only sees crackpots and sycophants. He’s had so much of it, he can’t even recognise when someone turns up with something genuine and important. The same for his MPs. –Slater

Then there was MAYOR DAVE.

Related Posts and Comments:
17.6.15 Southern District Health Board sacked !!!
9.6.15 Southern District Health Board
1.5.14 Dunedin Hospital buildings SORRY STATE

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

19 Comments

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Warning! NZ disposable income down

Link received Mon, 6 Apr 2015 at 1:00 p.m.

█ Message: Wouldn’t read this in local media !!!

### marketoracle.co.uk Apr 05, 2015 – 01:28 PM GMT
Economics / Asian Economies
New Zealand Economy – There’s Trouble Brewing In Middle Earth
By Raul I Meijer
For the second time in three years, I’m fortunate enough to spend some time in New Zealand (or Aotearoa). In 2012, it was all mostly a pretty crazy touring schedule, but this time is a bit quieter. Still get to meet tons of people though, in between the relentless Automatic Earth publishing schedule. And of course people want to ask, once they know what I do, how I think their country is doing.
My answer is I think New Zealand is much better off than most other countries, but not because they’re presently richer (disappointing for many). They’re better off because of the potential here. Which isn’t being used much at all right now. In fact, New Zealand does about everything wrong on a political and macro-economic scale. […] I’ve been going through some numbers today, and lots of articles, and I think I have an idea what’s going on. Thank you to my new best friend Grant here in Northland (is it Kerikeri or Kaikohe?) for providing much of the reading material and the initial spark.
To begin with, official government data. We love those, don’t we, wherever we turn our inquisitive heads. Because no government would ever not be fully open and truthful.

This is from Stuff.co.nz, March 19 2015:
New Zealand GDP grew 3.3% last year

New Zealand’s economy grew 3.3% last year, the fastest since 2007 before the global financial crisis, Statistics NZ said. Most forecasts expect the economy to keep growing this year and next, although slightly more slowly than in the past year. For the three months ended December 31, GDP grew 0.8%, in line with Reserve Bank and other forecasts. That was led by shop sales and accommodation. That sounds great compared to most other nations. But then we find out where the alleged growth has come from (I say alleged because other data cast a serious doubt on the ‘official’ numbers) […] while the economy ostensibly grew by 3.3%, disposable income was down. That’s what you call a warning sign.

….Meijer’s commentary continues in reference to recent New Zealand news stories:

Stuff: Dairy Slump Hits New Zealand Exports To China
Radio NZ: Export Drop Rattles Companies
NZ Herald: World Dairy Prices Slide 10.8% On Supply Concerns
Radio NZ: World ‘Awash With Milk’
NZ Herald: Stress Too Much For Farmers
NZ Herald: Hot Properties: Auckland Valuations Out Of Date Within Months

He ends by citing NZ Herald: New Zealand’s Economic Winds Of Change:

Chaos theory calls it the butterfly effect. It’s the idea that a butterfly flapping its wings in the Amazon could cause a tornado in Texas. The New Zealand economy has plenty of its own butterflies changing the weather for GDP growth, jobs, interest rates, inflation and house prices. [..] One of the flappiest at the moment is the global iron ore price. It’s barely noticed here but it’s an indicator of growing trouble inside our largest trading partner, China, and it is knocking our second-largest partner, Australia, for six. It fell to a 10-year low of almost US$50 a tonne this week and is down from a peak of more than US$170 a tonne in early 2011.
[…] President Xi has reinforced the contrasting effects of the changes in China on Australia and New Zealand by encouraging consumers and investors to spend more of China’s big trade surpluses overseas. Tourism from China was up 40% in the first two months of this year from a year ago, and there remains plenty of demand from investors in China for New Zealand assets.
The dark side of this tornado in New Zealand after the flapping of the butterfly’s wings in China was felt in Nelson this week. The region’s biggest logging trucking firm, Waimea Contract Carriers, was put into voluntary administration owing $14m, partly because of a slump in log exports to China in the past six months.
That’s because New Zealand’s logs are now mostly shipped to China to be timber boxing for the concrete being poured in its new “ghost” cities. The Chinese iron ore butterfly has flapped and now we’re seeing Gold Coast winter breaks become cheaper and logging contracts rarer.

Read full article

Website: http://theautomaticearth.com (provides unique analysis of economics, finance, politics and social dynamics in the context of Complexity Theory)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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DIA —poor job as gambling regulator

LAUGHABLE
The costs of regulation outweigh revenue from fees by $9 million a year.

### NZ Herald Online 5:00 AM Monday Mar 9, 2015
Breaches by pokie operators spark fee increase
By Nicholas Jones
Half of all inspections of pubs and clubs with pokie machines identify breaches or non-compliance with the law. Fees paid by pokie operators are to be increased as levels of fraud and other breaches challenge the Government’s ability to police the sector. Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne is overseeing consultation on proposals that will increase fees paid by clubs and pubs with gambling machines by 54 per cent.

OPERATION CHESTNUT NEAR COMPLETION
DIA, SFO and the Organised Financial Crime Agency NZ scrutinised $30 million in gaming grants made by trusts including Bluegrass. Bluegrass’ licence was cancelled after the DIA ruled its start-up funding was sourced from three racing clubs, rather than from South Canterbury Finance, as claimed.

The past three years have seen an increase in complex investigations into fraud and illegal activity at clubs and societies with pokies. That, and the declining number of pokie machines, has put severe financial pressure on the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA). Gambling enforcement is funded through fees paid by gambling operators.
Read more

Related Posts and Coomments:
2.2.15 Operation Chestnut: DIA, SFO fluffing round the edges #TTCF #ORFU
11.1.15 Southern complainants: IPCA won’t ensure upfront investigation…
14.12.14 DIA regulates what? Not white collar crime, not with govt looking on!
5.8.14 Gambling Commission shuts down racing’s Bluegrass pokie trust
3.2.14 DIA signed up Intralot amid concerns about bribery and corruption
31.12.13 Martin Legge: Operation Chestnut [DIA’s PR exercise]
30.12.13 DIA insights: Pokie rorts, money-go-rounds, names
11.10.13 New Zealand: Pokie trusts same everywhere #pokierorts
10.10.13 Whistleblowers’ message heard ??! #OtagoRacingClub #pokierorts
1.8.13 Politicians keeping DIA/SFO quiet on ORFU and TTCF #pokierorts
31.3.13 DIA and Office of the Auditor General stuff up bigtime #pokierorts
21.2.13 DIA, SFO investigation #pokierorts
11.11.12 Department of Internal Affairs #pokierorts #coverup #TTCF
25.7.12 Martin Legge backgrounds TTCF (pokie trust) and Portage and Waitakere Licensing Trusts #DIA

█ For more, enter the terms *pokies* or *pokie rorts* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Campbell Live | TXT POLL: Does NZ need a new flag?

Flag of New Zealand [en.wikipedia.org] 1The flag of New Zealand is a defaced Blue Ensign with the Union Flag in the canton, and four red stars with white borders to the right. The stars represent the constellation of Crux, the Southern Cross. More at Wikipedia.

Tweets 27.2.15 @CampbellLiveNZ [screenshot]:

Campbell Live tweets 27.2.15

### ODT Online Fri, 27 Feb 2015
Chin hoping for ‘huge interest’ in flag debate
By Chris Morris
Mr Chin (73), Dunedin mayor from 2004-10, was yesterday named with 11 others – including prominent New Zealand businessmen, academics, sportsmen and military figures – to sit on the Flag Consideration Panel. Mr Chin (73), Dunedin mayor from 2004-10, was yesterday named with 11 others – including prominent New Zealand businessmen, academics, sportsmen and military figures – to sit on the Flag Consideration Panel. Mr Chin told the Otago Daily Times he was looking forward to the role and hoped public interest in the debate would be “huge”.
Read more

● Binding referendum for NZ flag design.
● No binding referendum for sending NZ troops to Iraq.

Surprise. John Key PM has a super-inflated ego.

█ See Russell Garbutt’s comment & following discussion at Peter Chin positive.

The Last Of The Rockstars Published on Jan 19, 2014
U2 – Get On Your Boots (Grammys 2009) – HD

Here’s the video screen sans audio:

U2 Spain Uploaded on Mar 3, 2009
U2 – GET ON YOUR BOOTS (Screen 360 Tour)
(No Line on the Horizon)
Alternate video

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Chris Trotter on National’s “developers’ charter” #RMA reforms

John Key PM + Nick Smith at Hobsonville housing development 24.8.14 [Hannah Peters - Getty Images AsiaPac]

The Never-Ending Suburban Dream: Dr Nick Smith’s purported determination to make housing more affordable by “reforming” the Resource Management Act has been widely derided as little more than a National Party recommitment to the urban development model of the 1950s and 60s. In short, to quote Peter Dunne, “a developers’ charter”.

Chris Trotter [radiolive.co.nz]### bowalleyroad.blogspot.co.nz
Friday, 23 January 2015 at 08:53
New Zealand Doesn’t Need A “Developers’ Charter”
By Chris Trotter
THE LAWYERS and the environmental lobbyists are already gnawing at Dr Nick Smith’s proposed changes to the Resource Management Act (RMA). Forewarned by the National-led Government’s first, abortive, foray into environmental law reform back in 2013, a forearmed Opposition has this week re-joined the battle with renewed energy.
The United Future leader, Peter Dunne, has warned against turning the RMA into a “Developers’ Charter” – a potent political riff upon which his parliamentary colleagues have been only-too-happy to extemporise.
Has the Prime Minister, rubbing shoulders with 1 percent of 1 percent of the 1 Percent at Davos, given equal heed to the venerable Member for Ohariu? Given that few politicians’ appreciation of middle-class New Zealanders’ tics and tells is stronger than Mr Dunne’s, if John Key isn’t paying attention to him, then he should – and soon.
Not that, in the brutal numbers game that determines whether a piece of legislation succeeds or fails, Mr Key needs the endorsement of Mr Dunne. The parliamentary arithmetic of environmental law reform requires no complicated figuring. The Act Party’s grace-and-favour MP for Epsom, David Seymour, has already signalled (well in advance of any actual shouts of “Division called for!”) that he will be supplying Dr Smith with the single vote necessary (in addition to National’s 60 votes) to ensure the passage of the Government’s environmental reforms.
Which is, when you think about it, extraordinary. With sixty MPs, National’s current parliamentary caucus is, by historical standards, a large one. It is also slavishly obedient.
[…] It has been a very long time indeed since a National Party politician “crossed the floor” in any kind of procedurally meaningful context. For many years now absolute caucus discipline has not only been assumed – it has prevailed.
Such robotic compliance is not good for the health of National’s caucus; the wider National Party organisation; nor, ultimately, for that of parliamentary democracy itself. Voters need to believe that there are at least some MPs whose definitive allegiance is to values and principles more enduring than the arguments of their Party Whip. On matters crucial to both the social and the natural environments, the practice of representative democracy should rise above the crude calculations of purely partisan arithmetic. It should be about reason and science; about being persuaded by the evidence and securing the greatest good for the greatest number.
Replacing New Zealand’s much admired RMA with a “Developers’ Charter” would be about none of those things.
Read more

█ This essay was originally published in The Waikato Times, The Taranaki Daily News, The Timaru Herald, The Otago Daily Times and The Greymouth Star of Friday, 23 January 2015.

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*Images: (top) Hannah Peters/Getty Images AsiaPac – John Key PM and Nick Smith at Hobsonville housing development (August 2014); radiolive.co.nz – Chris Trotter tweaked by whatifdunedin

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New Zealand: Salmond on abuse of democratic freedoms

Dame Anne Salmond [stuff.co.nz] 1 ### stuff.co.nz Last updated 10:57 13/01/2015 — Dominion Post
Erosion of democratic rights
By Dame Anne Salmond
OPINION In the wake of the shooting of cartoonists and journalists in Paris, political leaders in New Zealand have expressed shock and horror, and their support for those who uphold freedom of expression in other countries.
What about freedom of speech and thought at home, however?
Over the past decade or so, politicians seeking to uphold their own power have abused democratic freedoms in New Zealand. Journalists including Jon Stephenson (for reporting on New Zealand’s involvement in Afghanistan), Andrea Vance (over a suspected leak of a report about the GCSB spy agency), and Nicky Hager (for exposing scurrilous relationships between senior politicians and muck-raking bloggers) have been intimidated and attacked.
While our leaders do not shoot people, they work with others to try to ruin the lives and careers of those who disagree with them. The means may be different, but the intent is the same. One way or another, their critics (however valid their points of view might be) must be silenced.

It is not just outspoken individuals who are at risk. Institutions that are the bulwarks of our democracy have been undermined. Since the 1980s, the civil service, which is supposed to offer informed, impartial advice to politicians, has been brought under ministerial control, and instead of serving civil society now largely serves its political masters.

The freedom of the press has been compromised, for instance in the wake of the teapot tape scandal, when newspaper offices were raided in an effort to prevent the publication of those recordings, or when improper pressure is brought to bear on journalists and media outlets for partisan political purposes.
While H L Mencken defined good journalism as “afflicting the comfortable, and comforting the afflicted”, much journalism in New Zealand now does the opposite. Read more

█ Dame Anne Salmond is a Distinguished Professor at the University of Auckland. She was the 2013 Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year.

Anthony Robins at The Standard says:
“Salmond goes on to cover attacks on “The independence of the judiciary and the rule of law”, “Independent statutory bodies”, “Freedom of thought and inquiry in universities and Crown Research Institutes” and “Radical extensions of the powers of the SIS and the GCSB” […] It’s an excellent article, and a depressing summary of the state of NZ.” Link

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Auckland Council: Hark to DCC’s well-tried model of corporate welfare

Sky City International Convention Centre [via stuff.co.nz]Sky City International Convention Centre and hotel.

Somebody ruthlessly slips the word “National” into the name for Auckland’s proposed convention centre.

### stuff.co.nz Last updated 17:32, December 22 2014
Auckland Councillors blast Sky City ‘corporate welfare’
By Niko Kloeten
Auckland ratepayers should not have to pay for a blow-out in the cost of the Sky City National (sic) Convention Centre, councillors say.
Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce raised the prospect of the Auckland Council chipping in to help fund the project, after new estimates revealed the cost could blow out by as much as $128 million. The increase in cost could leave taxpayers on the hook for any shortfall, but Joyce said the council could provide some assistance. “If you look at the Wellington Council, they’ve just done a deal to do a convention centre there, a much smaller one, but they’ve under-written some operating costs and that might help was well,” he told Radio New Zealand.
Howick councillor Dick Quax said the money would be better spent on the city’s much-needed transport projects, several of which have been delayed due to funding pressures. “It could be the beginning of an endless group of corporates coming to the council with their hands out. I don’t support corporate welfare at all.”
Read more

█ Dunedin City Council bought professional rugby and simultaneously lost 152 cars. But wait, there’s more.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Chief Ombudsman | OIA review

“The effective operation of the OIA is crucial to our system of open and democratic government, and this review will scrutinise how things are currently operating and set out a framework for systemic improvement where deficiencies are identified.” –Beverley Wakem, Chief Ombudsman

Beverley Wakem 1 [nbr.co.nz]### NZ Herald Online 2:11 PM Tuesday Dec 16, 2014
Government offices selected for OIA review
By Isaac Davison – NZ Herald political reporter
The Chief Ombudsman says a major review of the Official Information Act will scrutinise all 27 government ministers’ offices.
Dame Beverley Wakem today began her review of the way the public sector used the OIA, which she first announced in August.
Twelve government agencies have been selected for formal review, based on their size, number of OIA requests, complaints, and other criteria.
A further 63 agencies and all ministers’ offices have been asked to complete a detailed survey. At least one agency cited for good OIA practice would be included in the review.
The Ombudsman’s office would also seek input from past and present public servants, Opposition parties, journalists, academics and others.
Dame Beverley said the goal was to assess the quality and integrity of OIA practice in the public sector and to address any issues that were found.
Read more

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█ For more, enter terms such as *corruption*, *fraud*, *whistleblowers*, *dia*, *department of internal affairs*, *stadium*, *gambling*, *auditor general*, *oag*, *audit nz*, *orfu*, *nzru*, *sfo*, *pokies*, *ttcf*, *racing* or *rugby* in the search box at right.

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John Oliver on Eminem vs National #LastWeekTonight

John Oliver on NZ Election 1b

█ Watch at YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e25YmpQiEEY

Last Week Tonight at Facebook

****

### tvnz.co.nz Published: 7:34AM Tuesday September 23, 2014
US show mocks NZ over accent and National’s Eminem stoush
Source: ONE News
A British comedian has taken aim at an issue the National Party faced during its political campaign. In a clip posted on YouTube, John Oliver, who hosts the US show The Last Week Tonight, says New Zealand has re-elected Prime Minister John Key on Saturday, “despite a turbulent campaign with a major scandal that engulfed him earlier this week”. He then plays a ONE News clip, in which Wendy Petrie says: “Rap superstar Eminem’s become the latest to take pot shots at our Government.”
Read more

John Oliver on NZ Election 3John Oliver on NZ Election 2aJohn Oliver on NZ Election (ONEnews)John Oliver on NZ Election (ONEnews samples National ad with Eminem audio) 1John Oliver on NZ Election (ONEnews samples National ad with Eminem audio)John Oliver on NZ Election (Stuff - Steven Joyce, National Party campaign manager) 1John Oliver on NZ Election (Steven Joyce, National Party campaign manager)It's pretty legal --Steven Joyce 1

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● 16.9.14 Eminem sues National Party
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Stuff: Roughly one million didn’t turn out #derision14

The official election results will be announced on October 4

3 Keys vote [radionz.co.nz] bw

### Stuff Last updated 16:03 21/09/2014
Voter turnout near record low
By Charlie Mitchell
Roughly a million people didn’t show up to vote for Saturday’s election, making it one of New Zealand’s worst turnouts in the last century. An estimated 77.04 per cent of enrolled voters took part in the election, slightly higher than the 74.2 per cent turnout in 2011, which was the worst in percentage terms since before women got the right to vote in 1893.

This year’s result still ranks as the third-worst turnout in the last 100 years, with the number of non-voters almost tallying to the number of votes that went to National.

The estimated results are based on the 2,405,652 votes received before voting closed, which includes nearly 300,000 special votes that are yet to be counted. Voter turnout has been on a downward slide since the 1960s, when it consistently reached 90 per cent. It has declined in each election since the advent of MMP, with the exception of 2002.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: radionz.co.nz – Keys vote (detail)

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Election Night

Tweet from Jared Savage (@jaredsavageNZH) 20.9.14 11.13 pm

█ Key says he will lead a government that governs for all New Zealanders

TV3 Vote 2014 John Campbell and John Key PM (screenshot 1031)

Prime Minister John Key’s National Party has won a third term with an unprecedented govern-alone victory in the general election.

National won 48 percent of the party vote, giving it 62 seats in the 121-member parliament.

It’s the first time since MMP was introduced in 1996 that any party has held a majority without needing coalition partners.

█ Key: The issues that matter

Tweet from Internet Party (@InternetPartyNZ) 1 - screenshot (1067)

Kim Choe (@kimchoe) tweeted at 10:56 PM on Sat, Sep 20, 2014:
Kim Dotcom blames himself: “I’m sorry to say this, but we lost because of me”. Read more: http://t.co/JHw6TkMNgG #decision14
(https://twitter.com/kimchoe/status/513280476547543040)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Images: Jared Savage (@jaredsavageNZH) at Twitter [screenshot]; mediaworks.co.nz – (TV3) Decision 14 – Live Stream, John Campbell and John Key PM [screenshot]; Internet Party (@InternetPartyNZ) at Twitter [screenshot]

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Chief Ombudsman Beverley Wakem to launch post-election inquiry

█ What today’s ODT editorial doesn’t tell you, story sunk not headlining…..

“We may as well kiss democracy goodbye” –The Standard
By NATWATCH, published at 8:13 am, September 19th, 2014
The words of the title of this post are those of Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem …. Yet another typical scandal from the dirtiest government ever seen in NZ. Read more + Comments

Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem to launch wide-ranging inquiry after election in respect of OIA practices

### NZ Herald Online 5:30 AM Friday Sep 19, 2014
Ombudsman ‘appalled’ by ex-Customs lawyer’s OIA allegations
By David Fisher
A former Customs lawyer claim that he was told to bury bad news matches similar stories which have sparked a wide-ranging inquiry by Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem. She said she was “appalled” by Curtis Gregorash’s claim. “Having said that one of the reasons I am undertaking of selected agencies in respect of their OIA practices is that anecdotally a number of people have told me similar stories,” she said. She said a planned inquiry to be launched after the election could see the Ombudsman’s office using its Commission of Inquiry powers to compel evidence to be given under oath were there signs information was being hidden. “Ministerial offices will be figuring in our inquiry and that is all I will say.”
Read more

Tweet from Chris Slane (@Slanecartoons) tweeted at 9.18 AM on Fri, Sep 19, 2014 (1)

****

Whistleblower Curtis Gregorash said he was subjected to an internal investigation after releasing information about Dotcom sought by the NZ Herald through the Official Information Act. The information released saw Customs staff discuss earning “brownie points” by passing on Dotcom information to the FBI.

### NZ Herald Online 5:30 AM Friday Sep 19, 2014
Ex-Customs lawyer claims he was told to bury info that could embarrass the Government
By David Fisher
A former high-ranking Customs lawyer says he resigned from his job after allegedly being told to bury information that could embarrass the Government.
Curtis Gregorash said he was told by senior Customs executives to refuse Official Information Act and Privacy Act requests, which he believed was at the direction of former Customs Minister Maurice Williamson. It comes at a time the Prime Minister’s office is under inquiry over the release of intelligence material through the OIA and accusations that former Justice Minister Judith Collins was manipulating OIA responses for political purposes. [Mr] Gregorash quit his role as Customs’ chief legal counsel in March this year after more than a decade as a government lawyer.

The lawyer turned whistleblower said: “I’ve sat on it for a long time. But the story itself is so awful it needs to be told. I think people really need to see what ministers and some senior executives do.

He had decided to speak because he believed the alleged instruction “was unlawful”, undermined the way the public service was meant to operate and was given for what was ultimately political reasons. “The direction came down (from the minister) through the CEO (Carolyn Tremain) and group manager (of legal services) Peter Taylor to me saying ‘you don’t release anything – I don’t care what the OIA says, I’d rather fight it in the courts’.”
Mr Gregorash said the alleged instruction came during a briefing from Mr Taylor to the legal team in which he referred to Ms Tremain and meeting with Mr Williamson. “I resigned over it. I couldn’t stare my staff in the face and say this is actually serious conduct that’s being presented to you in a lawful way.”
Mr Gregorash said the alleged instruction to withhold information was general – but became specific in relation to “sensitive” issues, including entrepreneur Kim Dotcom, wanted for copyright violation in the United States. “Mr Taylor directed me to withhold all information and pass the same direction on to my team.”
Read more

● In the public interest, lengthy citation of articles by David Fisher at New Zealand Herald (APNZ).

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21.3.13 Public service causing “paralysis of democracy” with OIA requests

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John Key PM —real or fake? and one email

Retracing rubber …. ohh the worry lines!

### 3news.co.nz Monday 15 Sep 2014 2:51 p.m.
Dotcom’s bombshell revealed – reports
By Simon Wong, Online Reporter
The New Zealand Herald reports Dotcom’s bombshell evidence is an email from October 27, 2010 and is alleged to be from Warner Brothers chairman and chief executive Kevin Tsujihara to Michael Ellis, a senior executive at the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) which lobbies for Hollywood studios. The email reads:

“We had a really good meeting with the Prime Minister. He’s a fan and we’re getting what we came for. Your groundwork in New Zealand is paying off. I see strong support for our anti-piracy effort. John Key told me in private that they are granting Dotcom residency despite pushback from officials about his criminal past. His AG will do everything in his power to assist us with our case. VIP treatment and then a one-way ticket to Virginia.
This is a game changer. The DOJ is against the Hong Kong option. No confidence in the Chinese. Great job.”

However, Warner Brothers says the email is fake. Studio senior vice president for worldwide communications Paul McGuire said Mr Tsujihara didn’t write or send the alleged email.
Read more

█ Video http://www.3news.co.nz/tvshows/campbelllive/former-gcsb-boss-denies-snowdens-claims-2014091520?ref=video

Email via Campbell Live 15.9.14 [screenshot] 2Email via Campbell Live 15.9.14 [screenshot] 1Email via Campbell Live 15.9.14 [screenshot]Email via Campbell Live 15.9.14 - John Key [screenshot]Email via Campbell Live 15.9.14 - Kim.Com Mercedes [screenshot] 1TV3 Campbell Live (15.9.14) – Former GCSB boss denies Snowden’s claims
[screenshots]

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Eminem sues National Party

Eminem 23669710-1024-768 [detail] 3### NZ Herald Online 4:17 PM Tuesday Sep 16, 2014
National Party sued over Eminem copyright infringement
By Kurt Bayer, APNZ reporter – Christchurch
US rapper Eminem is suing the National Party for allegedly breaching copyright by using his song Lose Yourself in its campaign advertisements. The Detroit-based publishers of Eminem’s copyrights have filed proceedings in the High Court at Wellington today. Eight Mile Style, LLC and Martin Affiliated, LLC are seeking damages for copyright infringement against the New Zealand National Party. The proceedings stem from allegations that unauthorised use has been made of Eminem’s Grammy and Academy Award winning song Lose Yourself in election campaign advertising run by the National Party in the lead up to the general election.
Read more

Lawyers for Eminem also sued Apple over a licensing issue relating to Lose Yourself in 2009.

InterscopeEminem Uploaded Oct 21, 2011

Eminem – Lose Yourself (Official Music Video)
https://www.facebook.com/interscopeeminem

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Waitangi Day tributes

John trying to secure votes again

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr —with thanks to Source

*Image: porcupinefarm.blogspot.co.nz – John Key [imaged nicely | screenshot]

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