163 thoughts on “General debate, April 7, 2013

  1. The Prime Minister has confirmed on Radio New Zealand that the head of the GCSB is not a bunny.

    The State Services Commissioner has confirmed that the head of the GCSB is a political appointment, serving at the pleasure of the Prime Minister, not a Public Service appointment. I’m not entirely sure that:
    – I understand the difference
    – I think that this is the right setting

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  2. The Hand Mirror straightens out and wrong-thinking over the Key/Fletcher case:

    http://thehandmirror.blogspot.co.nz/2013/04/ian-fletcher-john-key-and-dodgy.html

    “”This is what happens when you have a culture of corporate governance in a democratic institution.

    Joyce and Key are both corporate governance masters. And they set a great deal of the culture of the Cabinet, and thus of the behaviour of the senior civil servants who support the Cabinet in their day to day work. And they don’t recognise the difference, the very important difference, between corporate governance and actual democratic governance.

    In a corporate environment the Right Thing To Do is often what you can get away with for maximum gain. It’s about not getting caught, rather than acting with integrity in the first place. If you do get caught then the focus is not that you did something wrong, or even that you got caught, it’s how you manage being caught out; shifting blame, constructing plausible deniability, brain fade*, whatever. Not everyone plays it this way, but the collapse of many finance institutions in the last few years has surely taught us that a great many do, in particular those in the areas of currency speculation, hedge fund managers, etc, who are seeking to make marginal gains very quickly by shifting around huge amounts of money for no other reason. It’s ok for Key to manueoruve a high level post for an old friend, it’s ok for Ministers not to front to major news institutions for months on end on topic issues, it’s ok for us to never know why a Minister was sacked. Because in corporate governance those are all within the rules and acceptable. Move on, nothing to see here.”

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  3. In a corporate environment the Right Thing To Do is often what you can get away with for maximum gain. It’s about not getting caught, rather than acting with integrity in the first place. If you do get caught then the focus is not that you did something wrong, or even that you got caught, it’s how you manage being caught out; shifting blame, constructing plausible deniability, brain fade*, whatever.

    He’s just described the state service – just add meetings where you distribute responsibility for future co*k-ups over the widest possible area.

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  4. PM advises someone to apply for a job
    Person goes through process and meets criteria
    PM gets final say in who is appointed, as do all PMs

    What’s the problem?

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  5. “He’s just described the state service – just add meetings where you distribute responsibility for future co*k-ups over the widest possible area.”

    An inevitable result of trying to make it run like a large corporation, instead of a service.

    In fact, one of the worst examples of this culture I have seen, is when I worked for the oil companies.

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  6. PM lies (by omission) about his involvement.

    That’s the problem right there (you know, the problem your are steadfastly ignoring/refusing to acknowledge/pretending doesn’t exist/trying to obscure with your redirection) – that problem.

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  7. It is so funny that this “non-issue” both you and photonz1 are seeking to extinguish/minimize/bury, is engaging you so intently! It’s been days now, and the ‘trifle’ has hooked you good. Can’t let it go, Arana, because it’s so damaging to Key, who is now portrayed as a buffoon/shyster/liar across the media platform.

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  8. If there was no problem, Arana. Why lie about it?

    It happens all the time. That we recommend someone for a job because we know them and their past capability.

    I can even understand using a non military appointee. We all know that military intelligence is an oxymoron. And the fact that spy agencies are secretive is more to disguise their galloping incompetence than fro security.

    The fact that Key felt the need to lie is strongly indicative of something fishy going on.

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  9. PM lies (by omission)

    So everytime a Green MP omits something, that will constitute a lie, will it?

    If there was no problem, Arana. Why lie about it?

    He didn’t. If Shearer can forget a large sum in a NY bank account four years in a row, then Key could forget chatting to someone on the phone two years ago.

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  10. because it’s so damaging to Key

    It isn’t. Next poll, he’ll be just as popular as ever.

    Because the people foaming about it don’t vote for Key and never will.

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  11. Key’s a talented un-truther. He omits to mention important details, he ‘forgets’ critical things, he diverts attention by attacking others (“Grant Robertson is stupid!”) and he shifts the pressure from himself onto the very people asking the question (“knuckleheads!”). Ther’es no denying he’s good at the art, but unlike you, Arana and photonz1,I and others here on Frogblog, don’t admire that sort of behaviour, nor do we deify that sort of person. Your relentless efforts to fudge the issue in order to dull the awareness, so apparent now, of what John Key does, is odd and begs the question; why are you so determined to do so. It’s as clear as a bell to most of us commenting here, but you blunder on, presumably believing that whoever has the last word, wins, but why, I wonder, are you so dedicated to the task of disinforming?

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  12. So, were any important details left out of the National billboards vandalism story? Do you believe either leader – during an election campaign – knew *nothing* about it until after the event?

    If you don’t have an issue with it, and it wouldn’t change your vote, then you’ll understand how National voters view Keys position.

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  13. *Arana’s brain to Arana – Quick, throw something at the argument! Something! Anything!!!

    Gimme a “D”, gimmee an “E”, gimmee an “S-P-E-R-A-T-I-O-N”, what have I got?

    DESPERATION!!!

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  14. greenfly says “PM lies (by omission) about his involvement.”

    translated – despite my repeated accusations, I have completely and utterly failed to come up with ANY lies at all.

    So the strongest accusation you’ve got now is accusing Key of not saying something that would have been a lie, IF he had ever said it.

    What to do now that you’ve been caught out and embarrassed – hmmm – get hysterical again

    greenfly says “*Arana’s brain to Arana – Quick, throw something at the argument! Something! Anything!!! Gimme a “D”, gimmee an “E”, gimmee an “S-P-E-R-A-T-I-O-N”, what have I got? DESPERATION!!!”

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  15. The colour-blind man stamps his little foot and declares,
    “The grass is red. It IS!!!

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  16. Kerry says “If there was no problem, Arana. Why lie about it?”

    Please quote us what this “lie” is – nobody else has been able to come up with anything.

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  17. greenfly says “The colour-blind man stamps his little foot and declares,
    “The grassis red. It IS!!!”

    translated – I’ve been caught out with no substance to my accusations, so I’ll try to divert attention away from my embarrassment.

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  18. greenfly says “he diverts attention by attacking others (“Grant Robertson is stupid!”) ”

    Stupid is an understatement.

    It’s Keys job to appoint of the head of the GCSB – NOT an independent process like the rest of the civil service.

    And Robertson says because Key took part in the process (i.e. did his job), that makes New Zealand more corrupt than a tinpot African dictatorship.

    You’d have to be incredibly stupid to say that.

    Especially when it was Robertson’s previous leader, Helen Clark, who changed the GCSB appointment FROM a civil service one, TO the PMs appointment.

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  19. Arana’s brain to Arana – Quick, throw something at the argument!

    Quick Greenfly, ignore the point.

    You didn’t think it was an issue that the Green Party didn’t supply all information, but they did answer the questions put to them. Likewise, Key supporters don’t think it’s an issue he didn’t supply all information, but did answer the question put to him.

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  20. So is Robertson likening Clark to a “tin pot African dictator”?

    Amusing.

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  21. Gimme a “D”, gimmee an “E”, gimmee an “S-P-E-R-A-T-I-O-N”, what have I got?

    A really bad chant at a protest march?

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  22. Through the lens of my Political Microscope, I see two teensy protozoa, desperately thrashing their filamentous flagella, trying to make forward progress through the murky soup in which they live, but having no more success than a man who hasn’t learned the ‘j’-stroke, in an ox-hide coracle, on a windy day.

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  23. I see someone desperately trying to make something out of nothing. A political appointment in Wellington? Gosh. That really is unusual…..

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  24. I’ve asked a fair number of people now, what did you think of Key’s claims in the House, what did you think of his response to interviews by the journalists, just to check if others felt the same way I did – that he was bull-sh*tting. They did. Arana and photonz1 are determined to convince us that we didn’t!, that he wasn’t!, nothing to see here, move along little doggies!
    “A political appointment in Wellington?” Any weaker, Arana, and your argument would even pass for dishwater.

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  25. This is like sewing without a needle – a long thread with no point.

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  26. Keep digging greenfly.

    You’ve still TOTALLY FAILED to quote us all these lies you’ve been talking about.

    All those people you claim to have asked (yeah right) could have told you what it was – if they knew.

    Arana summed it up succinctly “I see someone desperately trying to make something out of nothing.”

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  27. With both Arana and photonz1 ‘here’ together at the same time, it’s a great opportunity for me to ask: do you believe that the PM has been as up-front and honest around the Fletcher appointment as we should expect from a PM of New Zealand?

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  28. Your response is not true at all and slippery as. Par for the course for you, Arana, to use a term from your home-planet.
    A simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ would have been the honest answer. If asked, I’d say, ‘no’.

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  29. greenfly says “do you believe that the PM has been as up-front and honest around the Fletcher appointment as we should expect from a PM of New Zealand?”

    YOU are the one who was screaming liar liar liar liar.

    Then couldn’t actually come up with quotes that are lies.

    So you squirm and squirm and squirm and try to change the debate.

    Anything but come up with the quotes.

    It’s like watching a greenfly after they’ve been sprayed with Raid.

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  30. The issue is simply not something over which John Key would deliberately lie to try and cover. The suggestion is patently ridiculous. What on earth would be in it for him to lie about such a trivial matter, as he gets to appoint the position, regardless?

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  31. Neither of you can say, “yes” or “no”. Put you in a difficult position, didn’t I. Sorry to embarrass. It is hard, I imagine, to avoid a simple answer where truthfulness is required.
    I’ll withdraw my painful request, and sign off for the day. I didn’t mean to cause you pain and was only trying to ease the truth out of you, for your own good.

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  32. Key:
    “The board and the panel knew. I didn’t undertake the recruitment, that was fully done by the State Services Commission, so you really have to say, in a small country like New Zealand … would the criteria be that no-one could get hired because I might know them?,”

    “I DIDN’T UNDERTAKE THE RECRUITMENT, THAT WAS FULLY DONE BY THE STATE SERVICES COMMISSION…”

    True statement, Arana and photonz1, or false?

    Terribly interested in your response.

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  33. greenfly –

    You’ve asked us to decide whether he’s telling lies or not, but you can’t actually tell us what quote you’re talking about.

    DUH!!!!!

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  34. Greenfly says ““I DIDN’T UNDERTAKE THE RECRUITMENT, THAT WAS FULLY DONE BY THE STATE SERVICES COMMISSION…””

    FINALLY – a quote – that was corrected soon after when he checked back in his diary.

    THIS is your big conspiracy theory?

    You’re joking surely.

    Talk about desperation to turn minutiae into hysteria.

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  35. “I DIDN’T UNDERTAKE THE RECRUITMENT, THAT WAS FULLY DONE BY THE STATE SERVICES COMMISSION”

    So, if he forgot the phone call, he’s still consistent, isn’t he? Then, like Shearer, he corrected himself when he realised he’d made an error.

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  36. The “John Key = Slippery” narrative hasn’t got you anywhere since 2008. Are you trying to win by default? If so, that doesn’t suggest you’re all that confident in LabGreen’s abilities.

    One wonders why Labour and The Greens don’t spend more time outlining their own policies, and informing New Zealanders how they will make their lives better than they are now.

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  37. Minutiae or “forgot”, is what he said true, or not?
    Simple question. Again, a “yes” or “no” would suffice.
    Why is it you struggle so with those two words?

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  38. Depends what he meant by “recruitment”, doesn’t it.

    How about this:

    “Charter schools would make the educational achievement of the most vulnerable children worse, she added”

    If one can’t produce proof, is that a misleading comment? Yes or no.

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  39. But wait, there’s more!

    “State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie admitted yesterday he was a “little surprised” that Mr Key was the one to contact Mr Fletcher about the vacancy for director of the Government Communications Security Bureau.

    And he said it was Mr Key who “ultimately” decided to scrap a short list of four candidates, prepared by a recruitment consultant, after Mr Rennie said the applicants to be director of the Government Security Communications Bureau were not suitable.”

    Phoned Fletcher and decided to scrap the short list! Goodness! Remember this:

    “I DIDN’T UNDERTAKE THE RECRUITMENT, THAT WAS FULLY DONE BY THE STATE SERVICES COMMISSION”

    Odd way to keep the process at arms’ length, eh?

    Odd memory-fade as well.

    Odd.

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  40. Arana: “Depends what he meant by “recruitment”, doesn’t it.”

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

    Priceless!

    Depends what you mean by “raid” on Dotcom’s mansion, doesn’t it.

    Lordy, Arana. Give it a rest.

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  41. That’s not “undertaking the recruitment”. Key is “the client” in that relationship – the employer. Employers frequently dismiss lists from recruiters.

    Is this all you’ve got, Greenfly?

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  42. Key is the client and can rightly dismiss lists from recruiters. That doesn’t make him the recruiter, does it.

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  43. Mind you, this is the first time I can recall you attempting to construct an argument. Keep it up :)

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  44. greenfly says “Odd way to keep the process at arms’ length, eh?”

    Talk about stupid!!!

    IT’S KEYS JOB TO APPOINT WHOEVER HE WANTS TO THE HEAD OF GCSB.

    It doesn’t have to be at arms length. There doesn’t have to be a process.

    Helen Clark changed the law so the PM can pick WHOEVER THEY WANT.

    That’s why your conspiracy is so laughable.

    You don’t even realise you are accusing the PM of DOING HIS JOB!!!!

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  45. You love your wee “stupid” barb, don’t you, photo.
    Suits you.
    Arana says; “That doesn’t make him the recruiter, does it.”
    Photon says; “IT’S KEYS JOB TO APPOINT WHOEVER HE WANTS”

    Love it when you tread on each other’s toes!

    Arana – what part of ringing the guy and advising him of the position isn’t “recruitment?”
    Photonz1 – tell me, is there are recognised process that’s followed when the Head Spook is chosen, or is it, as you loudly proclaim entirely up to the PM and he can do whatever he wants!!!

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  46. “Let’s get this straight, Key shoots his mouth off first denying having seen his mate for 30 years, then admits he has had breakfast with him recently, then admits he has his number in his phone, then he admits vouching for him to apply, then admits he called him directly but it’s all the medias fault and Key is going to throw a wobbly and not immediately answer questions anymore?”

    Key is a liar and it would be interesting to know what other lies his mate Fletcher is covering his arse over.

    Thats the good thing for Key about appointing your mates ….. they will cover your arse for you ……………

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  47. greenfly asks “what part of ringing the guy and advising him of the position isn’t “recruitment?””

    The parts where he applies to Rennie, has his CV, qualifications, experience, past history and background checked out, comes to NZ, gets interviewed, and the panel assesses his suitability, then provides a recommendations to Key.

    greenfly asks “tell me, is there are recognised process that’s followed when the Head Spook is chosen, or is it, as you loudly proclaim entirely up to the PM and he can do whatever he wants!!!”

    Helen Clark changed the law in 2003 so the PM can pick whoever they want.

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  48. Arana says; “That doesn’t make him the recruiter, does it.”
    Photon says; “IT’S KEYS JOB TO APPOINT WHOEVER HE WANTS”
    greenfly says ”Love it when you tread on each other’s toes!”

    It’s clear the difference has gone way over your comprehension.

    It’s really not very complicated greenfly – Rennie and the panel handled the recruitment process, the first round of which THEY recommended to Key that none be chosen.

    With no potential candidates, Rennie and Key discussed other possibilities, including Fletcher who RENNIE had wanted for the NZ Civil Service for many years because of his abilities.

    Two people were approached to apply. One of them did. Rennie and the panel did the checks, interview etc, and made a unanimous recommendation which Key accepted.

    But due to Clark’s law change, Key could have simply picked whoever he wanted right from the start, just like Clark used to do for some positions.

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  49. Bryce Edwards, a fair man, says:

    “John Key’s ‘relaxed’ responses last week to questions about his role in the appointment seemed an adequate response at the time. But revelations this week that he omitted some crucial and relevant information has made it far more serious. We now know that he was a central player in Fletcher’s appointment, making a critical phone call to Fletcher to encourage him to apply for the position. And, as is usual in scandals, it’s the ‘cover up’ rather than the original infringement that creates the most damage.”

    The pipings of photonz1 and Arana have a lonesome, lost quality to them…

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  50. “If Shearer can forget a large sum in a NY bank account four years in a row, then Key could forget chatting to someone on the phone two years ago.”

    Yes, if Shearer could forget that, but its seriously hard, for most of us, to believe he forgot about having a bank account (Howard Hughes he isn’t). I guess you are just very very trusting, or forgetful.

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  51. greenfly has another quote for us “We now know that he was a central player in Fletcher’s appointment, ”

    Ooooohhhh – someone accusing Key of being central in the appointment of Fletcher – EXACTLY WHAT HE IS SUPPOSED TO DO !!!!!

    Greenfly – are you having a competition with your own statements to find the most ignorant and stupid quotes?

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  52. Sam,

    Not quite correct. He did not forget about the money in the account as he reported the interest achieved to the IRD every year (does that mean he paid tax on this income in New Zealand and not in the USA?).

    What he forgot is that he needed to note the existence of a sum of money over $50K on his pecuniary interest statement. He was either too dumb to have read and understood the parameters regarding the listing of his bank total on the statement of pecuniary interest, or did so wilfully.

    He never forgot he had a surplus of funds, he was “forgetful” not to list them.

    Perhaps more interestingly is why he is leaving the funds in New York instead of repatriating them to New Zealand for a much higher interest rate.

    Could it be that the sum in the account is significantly higher then the Cullen $60K “rich prick” benchmark amount and as such is an embarrassment to the Labour party?

    Come closer to 2014 and this could be a significant downer for labour, much like the 6 houses Helen Clark owned.

    More “do as I say, not as I do” from Labour.

    Anyone starting a sweepstake on how long Arana, Photonz and Greenfly will continue their “discussion”?

    I go for another 12 hours at least.

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  53. Gerrit says “Anyone starting a sweepstake on how long Arana, Photonz and Greenfly will continue their “discussion”?”

    Can I take a bet on that?

    I’m surprised we haven’t moved onto the latest beat up. Russel Norman reckons Key is talking up war.

    Which, when you read Keys full quote, is obviously another total load of nonsense by Norman.

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  54. Theres no beat up when Key has been caught telling lies ………

    The question then becomes why was Key telling lies and that brings up many possibility’s, none of them good.

    The police have been caught telling lies in court in the Kim Dotcom case.

    The GCSB did illegal spying and there was an attempted cover up

    And John Key claims he was kept totally in the dark about the FBI, Kim Dotcom etc .

    It looks like he appointed his mate to cover his arse and bury the truth …..

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  55. photonz1

    It doesn’t have to be at arms length. There doesn’t have to be a process.

    [...]

    Ooooohhhh – someone accusing Key of being central in the appointment of Fletcher – EXACTLY WHAT HE IS SUPPOSED TO DO !!!!!

    Actually, you’re wrong! There is a process that John Key hasn’t followed. That constitutional process is in place to ensure cronyism doesn’t cause the government to become dysfunctional.

    That’s ultimately the main problem here… Key didn’t follow the proper process in appointing Ian Fletcher as head of the GCSB. He knows that, and has gone about obfuscating around the truth of the matter.

    The facts remain, appointing your mates into prominent positions and dismissing other more qualified candidates is not OK! It’s cronyism and is both legislated against and frowned upon by the general public.

    Gerrit

    Perhaps more interestingly is why he is leaving the funds in New York instead of repatriating them to New Zealand for a much higher interest rate.

    You must kno what the interest rate is then on his savings Gerrit… What is it?

    Could it be that the sum in the account is significantly higher then the Cullen $60K “rich prick” benchmark amount and as such is an embarrassment to the Labour party?

    Could it be that the interest has accrued and caused the sum to go over the $50 K threshold without Shearer realizing it? All this speculation without any substance seems entirely banal!

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  56. Could it be that the interest has accrued and caused the sum to go over the $50 K threshold without Shearer realizing it? All this speculation without any substance seems entirely banal

    If so, he would have said. He didn’t. So….

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  57. “GCSB director Ian Fletcher said in February that his agency did not illegally spy on anyone else on behalf of law-enforcement agencies.”

    Spy agency blasted in report

    85 Kiwis illegally spied on

    Goodness!

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  58. Arana

    If so, he would have said. He didn’t. So….

    He hasn’t said what the interest rate is or the amount, but that hasn’t stopped you RWNJ’s speculating all over the place like a bunch of idiots! If he said it was only just over $50 K, you would all be harping on about that as well.

    greenfly

    To be fair to Ian Fletcher, the illegal spying on another 85 New Zealand citizens (I wonder who they are and if they’ve been informed?), might not have been “on behalf of law-enforcement agencies.” Maybe the illegal spying was on behalf of the Prime Minister?

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  59. I reckon Key understands exactly what his job requires.

    He also knows something I do not.

    Which is who exactly he is working for… because it certainly isn’t the nation of New Zealand.

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  60. BJ,

    You might find this interesting

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/shearer-must-release-his-foreign-bank-statements-weekend-review-mc-137854

    Why hold NZ$50,000+ on deposit with ASB, earning taxable interest of say 4.5%, another NZ$50,000+ with Chase earning taxable interest of say 2.5%, but still be paying, from after-tax income, around 5.75% interest on a Westpac mortgage?

    Seems like we have another Labour leader with a few houses.

    He also has a mortgage with Westpac over one or both of his Pt Chevalier and Avondale homes, or his jointly owned property in beautiful Whananaki.

    Greenfly,

    Did you notice in the report that the spying was both under the auspices of the current National government AND the previous Labour one?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/8524181/Secret-report-unveils-extensive-illegal-spying

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  61. Gerrit – yes. If Helen Clark was Prime Minister presently, I’d be sheeting the blame to her. Key however, has the responsibility now and questions/blame lies with him (notice my punny final phrase).
    Do you not think that the PM, who has sole responsibility for the agency, should be held responsible?

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  62. Jackal – yes, I was aware of the potential for hair-splitting and weasel-wording. It’s par for their course.

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  63. He hasn’t said what the interest rate is or the amount

    Personally, I don’t care about the amount or interest rate. The point was he criticises Key for being forgetful, yet he forgets large stacks of money four years in a row.

    What’s also amusing is that rich people in Labour feel so touchy about being rich. I guess it doesn’t support their unconvincing “working class man” pantomime .

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  64. Key? forgetful?

    No he’s not.

    Money dealers aren’t forgetful.

    Key doesn’t forget. He “forgets”.

    Got it?

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  65. The reason people think it’s a lot more than 50K is they don’t think Shearer is a fiscal idiot.

    Exchanging 50K at 84 cents when you feel it should be around 60 isn’t a bit deal. But exchanging a million or two at those rates, is.

    This is a likely reason why you’d put up with the differential in interest rates between US and NZ.

    The Forex play doesn’t fit the working class man narrative, however. In fact, it reveals both leaders have similar interests.

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  66. Jackal says “There is a process that John Key hasn’t followed. That constitutional process is in place to ensure cronyism doesn’t cause the government to become dysfunctional.”

    Nonsense.

    Helen Clark removed the head of GCSB from that process a decade ago, and changed the law so the Prime Minister can choose WHOEVER THEY WANT.

    As her media adviser Brian Edwards said, she used to shoulder tap people for jobs all the time.

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  67. Photonz1 is alone in believing that there isn’t a process that the Prime Minister should follow for the recruitment of Head Spook. maybe Brian Edwards shares the delusion, so that’s two. Only.
    Both must wonder why a recruitment agency was involved at all, given their belief that the PM need only tap a shoulder to get the job done.
    Perhaps your weakest ever line of argument, photonz1. Certainly getting no traction here at all. No support from a single soul either (Arana doesn’t count – no soul and all that).

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  68. Greenfly,

    Do you not think that the PM, who has sole responsibility for the agency, should be held responsible?

    Absolutely for the actions and the dysfunctionality.

    Not to defend but to explain, It is very hard to change a dysfunctional agency. Established and ingrained culture (in this case spying on New Zealanders started by Helen Clark) may have been thought the normal activity of the agency.

    He is guilty of not spending the time to change the functionality to what it should be. I guess proirities lay elsewhere?

    Hence the need to put in charge and adminastrator and not another security services trained and orientated boss.

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  69. greenfly – either you can tell us the legal process for appointing the head of the GCSB.

    Or you’ve no idea.

    Which means you are prepared to make accusations of breach of process based only on your total ignorance and prejudice.

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  70. On the other hand Rennie, who would have a better idea than anyone, reports “correct protocol was followed throughout the appointment process. No moral or legal rules were broken.”

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  71. Be interesrting to see the names of the 85 spied upon, the time frame and the authorising PM.

    Should be interesting, especially if one finds a Dr Russel Norman on the list under the Helen Clark adminastration. :-)

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  72. Gerrit – dysfunctional agency, yes. Need for change, yes. Honesty from Key about their activities and his knowledge of it? No.

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  73. Photonz1 – Binnie expressed concern about Key’s involvement. Ferguson expressed alarm also. Even Key’s media-bunnies (Watkins et al) said they were distinctly uncomfortable. The only people saying Key should have carte blanche are you and Edwards (Boag! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!)
    You must puzzle over how stupid everyone is (not yourself and Edwards, mind (Boag! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! And Hooten! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!) and you must pull your hair our over your efforts to make the Truth Obvious – even when you SHOUT no one takes any notice. To top it all of, Thatcher has died. You’ll be dragging out those dog-eared photos and spilling a tear over the ol’ Baroness today. I’m guessing that’s why Arana’s a no-show today. She’ll have dressed herself in black rags and drawn the curtains for the week.

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  74. To top it all of, Thatcher has died

    Indeed. And, as Billy Bragg notes, not a time for celebration. Though according to the Sydney Morning Herald, there is some serious partying going on.

    Although Maggie is mostly remembered for her political career, it was Maggie who invented Mr Whippy icecream. For this gift to mankind, she has my respect and admiration. But that is a very different Mrs Thatcher to the Mrs Thatcher whose legacy Billy puts in context.

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  75. greenfly doesn’t actually know what the rules are.

    But accuses Key of breaking them.

    Either you KNOW the rules you are accusing Key of breaking.

    Or you are a loony extremist prepared to say anything.

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  76. Should be interesting, especially if one finds a Dr Russel Norman on the list under the Helen Clark adminastration.

    I would think it’s highly likely.

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  77. GregorW

    Yes, but under Clark or Key leadership?

    Going to be interesting!!

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  78. greenfly says ““GCSB director Ian Fletcher said in February that his agency did not illegally spy on anyone else on behalf of law-enforcement agencies.”

    Spy agency blasted in report. 85 Kiwis illegally spied on. Goodness!”

    Fletchers report only went back to 2009.
    Kitteridges report also takes in the Clarke years back to 2003

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  79. “Perhaps I am expecting too much from a Spy Chief who was shoulder tapped by his mate and who helped put together the false case for Britain to go to war with Iraq, but when he told us that the GCSB had not illegally spied on any other NZer than Kim Dotcom, shouldn’t he have told the truth?”

    “Why is our spy agency illegally spying on NZers? Why didn’t Helen Clark and John Key demand answers? Did the spy agency lie to our Prime Ministers? Who are these NZers who have been spied upon illegally? What has happened to the information gleaned from that illegal spying? Will those 85 be contacted and offered compensation and an assurance that information will be destroyed?”

    “Is the appointment of the PMs mate completely inappropriate now we know the agency is out of control?”

    Those quote were from http://thedailyblog.co.nz/

    John Key and National have a history of giving out jobs to their mates and aside from greasing each others palms it serves the Govt in difficult circumstances to have ‘yes men & woman ‘ working for team National.

    But to sum up John Key has appointed a dishonest warmonger to the head of the GCSB and lied about how he did it.

    In a nut shell :)

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  80. Not hard to see who organised to raid the National party email servers during the Brash years.

    That man Fergusson, hand picked by Clark has more to worry about then his state pension.

    Probably why he called Key “a dope”.

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  81. “Key’s memory lapses

    * Forgot how many Tranz Rail shares he owned.

    * Unsure if and when he was briefed by GCSB on Kim Dotcom.

    * Forgot how he voted on drinking age.

    * Could not recall whether he was for or against the 1981 Springbok Tour.

    * Could not remember who was aboard mystery CIA jet parked at Wellington airport.

    * Forgot he phoned future director of GCSB urging him to apply for the job.”

    It would be more likely to be alcohol damage to the brain thats caused Keys shonky memory …… dope is a red herring ;-)

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  82. daddy o says “John Key and National have a history of giving out jobs to their mates”

    Helen Clark’s own media advisor said the current govt shoulder taps people for jobs much LESS than the previous govt. It’s what governments do to implement their policies.

    As for the “possible illegal spying”, it’s all a technicality that can be fixed with a law change.

    It’s ridiculous that if someone planning a terrorist attack, the GCSB is allowed to spy on them, but if they get NZ residency the spying has to stop.

    Or if a terrorist group includes foreigners and New Zealanders, the GCSB can only spy on the foreigners.

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  83. daddy o says Key forgot a large number of things. Some of these he should have remembered, or he’s just obfuscating.

    However for some, he’s being asked to remember what no normal person would ever remember.

    Like how many Tranz Rail shares he owned.

    How ridiculous. I’ve got shares in many companies and couldn’t give you an exact figure on a single one of them without looking it up. And I probably keep a much closer eye on my shares that Key ever did.

    I’ve even got shares that at times I forgot I bought (but I’ve never forgotten bank accounts with hundreds of thousands of dollars in it)

    ditto with the Dotcom briefing. This is even more insane.

    Daddy o expects someone to remember one (at the time ) unfamiliar face (with 11 other faces on it), on one page, of a hundred pages, of one briefing, out of hundreds of briefings.

    As left wing commentator Brain Edwards said, frantically busy people regularly forget who they rang this morning, let alone 10,000-20,000 phone calls ago.

    As he said, if someone seriously expects Key (or Clark) to remember all the things they get accused of forgetting, that person would be incredibly stupid.

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  84. “But what can’t be denied is that this whole affair indicates further that when he is questioned about his actions, the first instinct of Prime Minister John Key is to dissemble, divert and develop amnesia. This isn’t good enough. We are supposed to be able to trust the Prime Minister. His subsequent “knucklehead” hissy fit, in which he declared his intention to refuse questions about his own actions unless he has been warned about them in advance, was appalling.”. …… from http://publicaddress.net/hardnews/key-questions/

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  85. Why is it,I wonder, that Helen Clark wasn’t continually ‘forgetting’ the way John Key does?
    Why is it that Key is forever being accused of lying? That wasn’t a characteristic of the previous PM’s reign.
    Key does well in the popularity polls,yet is surrounded by the pong of duplicity, evasion, forked-tongued-ness and trickery. New Zealanders, it would seem, are willing to overlook the shiftiness in the PM. Photonz1 even goes as far as to argue vehemently that there is no shiftiness! That’s beyond pathetic, but he’s determined to have us believe that we are mistaken, that what we see for ourselves is wrong, that what is reported by astute commentators in the media is mistaken and that Mr Key is clean and straight. He believes, in line with the training the National Party ministers have been subject to, that if you boldly declare, “No. The reality is…” and do it without flinching, then black can become white, hot, cold and night, day. There is no problem with unemployment, the environment is better protected now than ever before, the gap has closed, our youths are staying in New Zealand and so on, and so on.

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  86. “Why is it that Key is forever being accused of lying”

    Because the left (which includes the MSM) cannot seem to come up with any actual policies to compete against National, so they have to tackle the man on mindless stuff – “Left Wing Political Strategies – 101″

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  87. greenfly says “Why is it,I wonder, that Helen Clark wasn’t continually ‘forgetting’ the way John Key does?”

    You mean like “forgeting” she didn’t paint the painting she signed?

    Or “not knowing” she was breaking the speed limit when her motorcade was doing 172km/h to get her to a rugby game?

    Or “forgeting” she had a meeting with Owen Glenn discussing his Monaco Consul appointment and $100,000 political donation?

    All headline news for days on end.

    Either greenfly is having his OWN serious memory loss.

    OR he is just telling lies about it.

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  88. Yeeees, photonz1, those 3 instances could represent Clark’s “forgots” over the 9 years she was PM. The list of “forgots” that follows Key around and grows longer and longer by the day (like his nose) casts Clark’s into the shadows. Key “forgets” regularly and often. Not so Clark. Key’s brain seems as retentive as a up-side-down hat. No one really believes he’s forgetful, save perhaps, you. If not forgetful, then…what?

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  89. photonz1

    All headline news for days on end.

    Not days photonz1; week’s if not months.

    So, on one hand we have three debatable instances of forgetfulness by Helen Clark that she was mercilessly hounded over by the MSM and right wing politicians, and on the other we have nearly twenty instances by John Key that I suspect are only the tip of the iceberg.

    Meanwhile, most of our mainstream media still seems to have a love affair with the most dishonest and supposedly forgetful Prime Minister New Zealand has ever seen.

    We’re also expected to believe that he’s the most popular PM ever, even though New Zealand is going backwards under his mismanagement. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that most Kiwi’s don’t like increased inequality, underemployment and being lied to, which makes such polling inconsistent with reality.

    That’s the right wing’s biggest problem at the moment, that their propaganda is entirely unbelievable! If they keep up with such obviously flawed excuses, I expect them to be thoroughly trounced at the next election. Clearly New Zealand deserves better.

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  90. greenfly says ‘No one really believes he’s forgetful, ”

    But we’re supposed to believe YOU couldn’t remember the speeding motorcade or paintergate or the Owen Glenn scandal.

    Then we have her lies spending on legitimate government business, when it turned out to be for electioneering pledge cards.

    Keep digging greenfly.

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  91. Jackal says “I expect them to be thoroughly trounced at the next election.”

    That’s what you said three years ago.

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  92. photonz1

    That’s what you said three years ago.

    What I actually said was that I expected National to be a one term government… I was around 1% of the vote away from being correct. If they win a third term, it would appear that the election process is corrupted.

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  93. Jackal says “If they win a third term, it would appear that the election process is corrupted.”

    If I don’t get my way, the process must be corrupt – says it all.

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  94. Photonz1 – you’re all at sea with your reasoning. Here’s my statement/question:

    “Why is it,I wonder, that Helen Clark wasn’t continually ‘forgetting’ the way John Key does?”

    Clark wasn’t continually forgetting the way Key is.
    You have somehow drawn from my question that I believe Clark hadn’t had “forgets”. Not so, I remember well, but I am comparing the frequency and number of forgets. Clark had some, Key has a plethora. Again, you are all at sea with your reasoning. This is not news to readers here.

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  95. photonz1

    If I don’t get my way, the process must be corrupt – says it all.

    The issue here is that conditions have worsened under a National government. That’s not just a perception, that’s a fact based on statistics. If you think the majority of New Zealanders are going to vote for more of the same disinformation and degradation John Keys government has caused, then you’re even more deluded than I first thought.

    You don’t have to prove to us that you suffer from cognitive dissonance photon, we already know.

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  96. Jackal says “If you think the majority of New Zealanders are going to vote for more of the same disinformation and degradation John Keys government has caused, then you’re even more deluded than I first thought.”

    If the economy is doing ok, most New Zealanders don’t put too much weight on minutiae.

    And they certainly don’t turn trivia into some world ending disaster the way you do.

    Surely you realise your view is from the extremity of the extreme left wing, and not too many others think that way.

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  97. greenfly says “Clark had some, Key has a plethora. ”

    As Edwards said, back when he worked for Clark no one was “stupid” enough to expect her to remember a phone call from 10-20,000 calls ago, or a single photo of 12 on a page as it flicked by in hundreds of pages in a powerpoint presentation, among the hundreds of other presentations, from months before.

    As politicians from all sides tell lies, exaggerate and omit facts for their job, whether Clark did or didn’t paint a painting, or whether Key or Rennie first suggested Fletcher and who phoned him, is nothing more than trivia compared to the real issues.

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  98. photonz1

    And they certainly don’t turn trivia into some world ending disaster the way you do.

    What exactly are you claiming is trivial?

    Don’t you think that the gap between rich and poor widening faster than ever before under National is of concern? Or perhaps you’re saying that fifty thousand more kids living in poverty doesn’t matter? You can also earn much much more in Australia since John Key made his promis to close the gap, which should probably be added to that list I linked to… Or perhaps it’s trivial that there are now twice as many unemployed people in New Zealand since National gained power in 2008?

    Please clarify exactly what you’re labeling “trivia” photon?

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  99. Jackal has a good short list of Keys ‘forgetfulness’ and dishonesty …. Im sure we can add to it

    “* Unsure if and when he was briefed by GCSB on Kim Dotcom.
    * Forgot how he voted on drinking age.
    * Could not recall whether he was for or against the 1981 Springbok Tour.
    * Couldn’t remember who was aboard mystery CIA jet at Wellington airport.
    * Forgot he phoned future director of GCSB urging him to apply for the job.

    However there’s also:

    * The S&P ratings downgrade.
    * Secret meetings with Lord Michael Ashcroft.
    * His “blind” trusts investments.
    * Dishonesty about the Hobbit dispute.
    * Misinformation concerning Afghanistan.
    * Broken promises about the Pike River recovery.
    * Disinformation about the SkyCity report.
    * Dishonesty concerning the safety of fracking.
    * Dishonesty about the number of unemployed.
    * Promising “no job cuts” to the Public Service Association.
    * “Forgetting” he signed off on the new ministerial BMW’s.”

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  100. And to show my memory’s in good order I’d like to remind everyone that PhotoNZ supports child abuse.

    Or at least he did when he supported a well known child sex abuser getting discharged WITHOUT a conviction.

    This surprised me because I was not aware this was National party policy …….

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  101. photonz1

    Surely you realise your view is from the extremity of the extreme left wing, and not too many others think that way.

    Actually, on most topics I agree with the general consensus of left wing commentators. I certainly don’t think my views are therefore very extreme… However to a right wing nutter like yourself photon, who spends every single day trolling FrogBlog, they might seem extreme.

    The fact that left wing bloggers in New Zealand outnumber right wing bloggers ten to one, and that the beliefs I express have a lot in common with other left wing bloggers, shows that my views are not extreme, unless you’re labeling all left wing beliefs extreme that is?

    Your claims about me being an extremist have about as much merrit as Ron Mark ranting on about terroists.

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  102. jackal says “Don’t you think that the gap between rich and poor widening faster than ever before under National is of concern? ”

    The gap will always widen. Even more so in a technology age where there are are fewer and fewer non-skilled jobs.

    Even between people who earn EXACTLY the same amount, the wealth gap continually widens between those who save and invest and those who don’t.

    jackal says “Or perhaps you’re saying that fifty thousand more kids living in poverty doesn’t matter? ”

    While we encourage people with no skills and no job to have lots of kids, the number of kids living in poverty will continue to grow.

    jackal says “You can also earn much much more in Australia since John Key made his promis to close the gap, which should probably be added to that list I linked to… ”

    The Greens want to devalue our currency, and make it even worse.(not to mention wanting to stop mining, stop drilling, stop dairy etc)

    jackal says “Or perhaps it’s trivial that there are now twice as many unemployed people in New Zealand since National gained power in 2008?”

    It’s laughable that you blame National for this when there’s been a global financial crisis and Europe has DOUBLE our unemployment.

    jackal says “Please clarify exactly what you’re labeling “trivia” photon?”

    GCSB appointment. Dotcom survellance. “possibly illegal” spying. Not knowing an exact number of share a trust owned, etc.

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  103. Daddy o dives into the sewer “And to show my memory’s in good order I’d like to remind everyone that PhotoNZ supports child abuse.”

    Why debate a sensitive issue when you can mislead and smear instead?

    Sniff…sniff……who stinks around here???

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  104. The person who supports and minimizes child abuse stinks PhotoNZ ……. and that would be you :-)

    You let your mask slip then and I think people are entitled to see where your ‘ coming from ‘.

    You’ll get all the respect you deserve when you support child sex abusers and Im surprised the National party should have such a person as you pimping their cause’s.

    BTW where do you stand on Hone’s ‘feed the kids ‘ Bill ?.

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  105. daddy o – it just shows how low you’ll stoop to try to damage people by misrepresenting them.

    The debate was about level of liability of someone who is asleep.

    That you can twist that into saying someone is in favour of child abuse, tells us more than anything about your personality, and how sick and twisted you are.

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  106. photonz1

    The gap will always widen. Even more so in a technology age where there are are fewer and fewer non-skilled jobs.

    Which should mean the government implements a better welfare system to ensure that a lack of jobs doesn’t lead to impoverishment and all the negative consequences that causes. Those negative consequences end up costing a lot more in the long run than ensuring people have enough to survive on in the first place.

    Even between people who earn EXACTLY the same amount, the wealth gap continually widens between those who save and invest and those who don’t.

    Poverty isn’t a result of saving or not photon, it’s a result of having enough to survive on. When somebody is struggling to pay bills, rent and buy food, saving is the last thing on their mind.

    People’s incomes not covering their cost of living causes poverty. Middle class and poor people’s incomes have comparatively reduced and that’s why inequality has increased. New Zealand had the fastest increase in inequality of all OECD countries under this ideologically driven and thoroughly inept National government.

    To highlight the contrast of government priorities; over the last six months an average 4,654 beneficiaries per month had their benefits cut in half under the government’s new sanctions regime. That means some young people have only $86 per week to survive on, and that’s what causes impoverishment and hardship. Meanwhile, the Mighty River Power director’s incomes increased by 73%… That’s what causes inequality, a disproportionate distribution of public wealth.

    While we encourage people with no skills and no job to have lots of kids, the number of kids living in poverty will continue to grow.

    Poor people aren’t encouraged to have more kids than rich people photonz1, in fact they’re actively discouraged through financial hardship. It just so happens that people of an age to have children are usually poorer in New Zealand. That’s because we have had a number of governments implement ageist policies that cause young people to be impoverished.

    The Greens want to devalue our currency, and make it even worse.(not to mention wanting to stop mining, stop drilling, stop dairy etc)

    Devaluing the dollar will not cause people’s incomes to reduce photonz1… Besides, we’re talking about National’s track record and Keys broken promises, not anything you can make up about Green’s policy. After saying National would close the income gap with Australia, Key then recently said that having low wages in New Zealand was a good thing… It’s not!

    It’s laughable that you blame National for this when there’s been a global financial crisis and Europe has DOUBLE our unemployment.

    So you believe that New Zealand is doing better than other countries since the GFC, but cannot supply any information to back up such an obviously defunct belief. My argument on the other hand has many statistics to show that National has entirely failed to grow the economy or give the average Kiwi family a brighter future.

    For instance, today the UNICEF reported:

    The comparative data for New Zealand shows we are:

    Ranked 32 out of 34 countries for young people who are not in any form of education, training or employment (NEETS)
    Ranked 21 out of 35 countries for levels of child poverty, above Italy and Canada but below the UK and Australia.
    Ranked 25 out of 34 countries for young people (aged 15-19 years) who are participating in higher education, ahead of Australia and the UK but below Spain and Greece.
    Ranked 24 out of 35 countries for general homicide (deaths per 100,000) which has an impact on children’s safety and development. Australia, the UK and most European countries have fewer homicides per 100,000 than New Zealand.
    Ranked 25 out of 35 countries for child health and safety (includes infant mortality and low birth weight, national immunization levels and death rate of children and young people).

    So yes! I blame National for the degradation of New Zealand, because things have become considerably worse for many Kiwis since John Key became Prime Minister.

    GCSB appointment. Dotcom survellance. “possibly illegal” spying. Not knowing an exact number of share a trust owned, etc.

    You might think that the GCSB illegally spying on New Zealanders and John Key appointing his mate to be the head spook is trivial photon, but I think that belief has more to do with your cognitive dissonance than anything else. It would also seem that you’re in a very small minority of people who think governmental corruption isn’t important.

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  107. Jackal says “Which should mean the government implements a better welfare system to ensure that a lack of jobs doesn’t lead to impoverishment and all the negative consequences that causes.”

    No – that’s putting up a white flag and sentencing large parts of society to life on benefits. (which the country can’t afford anyway so that’s a pipe dream)

    We need people to train for all the jobs that can’t be filled. 50% of businesses have trouble finding skilled staff. In todays paper, the MAIN problem holding back the Sth Is economy is finding skilled staff.

    Jackal says “Devaluing the dollar will not cause people’s incomes to reduce photonz1…”

    DUH! We’re talking about the income gap between Aus and NZ, and you think a devalued NZ$ won’t make any difference. Unbeleivable!

    Jackal says “So you believe that New Zealand is doing better than other countries since the GFC, but cannot supply any information to back up such an obviously defunct belief”

    Your gods sake – do you hide in a dark room out of touch with the world?

    Unemployment rates are
    7% – NZ
    8% – Sweden, UK, US, Finland, Denmark, Netherlands
    11% – France, Italy, Poland, Hungary
    12% – Europe (average)
    16% – Portugal
    25% – South Africa
    26% – Spain
    27% – Greece

    Jackal says “It would also seem that you’re in a very small minority of people who think governmental corruption isn’t important.”

    No – I’m just not on the extreme end of extreme left like yourself, so like normal people I make out that every piece of unimportant trivia is a big conspiracy.

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  108. Jackal says “So yes! I blame National for the degradation of New Zealand, because things have become considerably worse for many Kiwis since John Key became Prime Minister.”

    That just goes to show how biased you are.

    You ignore the Global Financial Crisis, but use UNICEF figures taken from when National had only just taken over from Labour, before most policies had even been changed.

    Since then things like the murder rate has dropped to the lowest rate in at least 17 years.

    And National has put huge effort into childhood vaccination. They’re up from 78% in 2007 to over 90% today.

    We are however one of the worst countries for teenage pregnancy – 500% more teenage pregnancies in NZ than in Switzerland, Netherlands etc.

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  109. Jackal says “Poor people aren’t encouraged to have more kids than rich people photonz1..,”

    What about the high school girls who DELIBERATELY get pregnant so they can get the DPB?

    Our local high school needs to have a creche because so many of their pupils have babies.

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  110. photonz1

    No – that’s putting up a white flag and sentencing large parts of society to life on benefits. (which the country can’t afford anyway so that’s a pipe dream)

    Meanwhile, National thinks we can afford to increase the already exorbitant amount of money given to people in top management, while cutting the incomes of the poorest. Your excuse doesn’t cut the mustard photon.

    We need people to train for all the jobs that can’t be filled. 50% of businesses have trouble finding skilled staff. In todays paper, the MAIN problem holding back the Sth Is economy is finding skilled staff.

    I totally agree, but that’s not going to quickly reduce the poverty that 250,000 New Zealand children experience every day. If you truly believe in increasing training as a solution, why are you supporting a government that has cut funding for students and made it impossible for many to achieve a higher education?

    DUH! We’re talking about the income gap between Aus and NZ, and you think a devalued NZ$ won’t make any difference. Unbeleivable!

    You do realize that quantitative easing puts more money into public circulation photon? That’s going to invigorate the economy and mean more people are employed. With less people competing for jobs ie a reduction in unemployed people, wages will likely increase. I know that’s what you really don’t want to happen photon, because having cheap labour is apparently a good thing.

    Your gods sake – do you hide in a dark room out of touch with the world?

    As usual you’re resorting to ad homonyms because you’ve lost the debate. Then you list a bunch of countries with higher unemployment rates than New Zealand. Pathetic! I could list a bunch of countries that have lower unemployment rates, but don’t think it would get through the thickness of your cranium.

    There is no doubt that New Zealand hasn’t recovered after the GFC as fast as it should have. In my opinion that’s because of the disproportionate tax breaks and further taxes on people who are already struggling reducing economic activity. Even Bill English admitted in the house yesterday that growth wasn’t as good after the GFC as it should have been… Why do you think that is photon? Are you disagreeing with Bill English?

    No – I’m just not on the extreme end of extreme left like yourself, so like normal people I make out that every piece of unimportant trivia is a big conspiracy.

    You’re clearly not normal photon, by any stretch of the imagination. You argue that we should ignore 250,000 children in poverty because giving poor people a better quality of life will apparently mean they have more children. Where’s your evidence? You fail to grasp the fact that New Zealand has to spend large amounts of money on advertising to encourage immigration, because Kiwis aren’t having enough children of our own.

    You also argue that the GCSB undertaking illegal activity is trivial. That’s so deluded as to put you in the extreme fascist category. In the Herald today, even John Armstrong scorns GCSB’s illegality and the governments proposal to “fix” the problem. Are you saying that John Armstrong is on the extreme end of extreme left as well?

    You ignore the Global Financial Crisis, but use UNICEF figures taken from when National had only just taken over from Labour, before most policies had even been changed.

    The latest UNICEF data is taken from 2009 to 2010… The financial crisis had ended. Are you saying Labour has responsibility for what happens while National is in power?

    Since then things like the murder rate has dropped to the lowest rate in at least 17 years.

    Which has been occurring in all developed countries photon… National trying to take credit for what is a worldwide phenomenon looks rather pathetic! You trying to say National’s policies have helped reduce crime even more so.

    And National has put huge effort into childhood vaccination. They’re up from 78% in 2007 to over 90% today.

    And how exactly does that reduce poverty, which is the cause of many many illnesses which cost the country dearly?

    We are however one of the worst countries for teenage pregnancy – 500% more teenage pregnancies in NZ than in Switzerland, Netherlands etc.

    So why did National cut family planning centre funding so they’re now looking at not giving free contraception to young people who want it? Again, National is making things a lot worse, not better.

    It would seem that your bias is getting in the way of you seeing reality photonz1.

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  111. Jackal – if we devalue by printing money –
    – petrol prices go up.
    – vehicle prices go up
    – appliance, computer, phone prices go up
    – the wage gap with Australia goes up.
    – anything that’s exported goes up i.e. meat, dairy, fruit etc
    – anything that is transported to anywhere goes up i.e. EVERYTHING
    – any local products that need imported machines to produce them goes up.

    BUT wages and benefits DON’T go up.

    You complain about poverty, yet you want hit the poor the hardest with big price increases by devaluing.

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  112. Jackal says “Which should mean the government implements a better welfare system to ensure that a lack of jobs doesn’t lead to impoverishment and all the negative consequences that causes.”

    No – that’s putting up a white flag and sentencing large parts of society to life on benefits. (which the country can’t afford anyway so that’s a pipe dream)

    This is the reality that we have been deliberately engineering since at least as far back as the fifties. This is true in all first world countries, not just New Zealand. Its part of the reason why economies are recovering, but not employment.

    After the wars, there was employment for pretty much everyone who wanted a job, as there was a full range of jobs available to suit the abilities of all people. There was a bell curve of peoples abilities to do complex jobs and it kinda matched the bell curve of the jobs available.

    We engineering and IT types have spent the intervening decades using our skills to bend that job need bell curve. We keep attacking the left side of it, replacing the need for people who can only do non-complex jobs with our clever technology. And the centre to right side keeps growing as we increase complexity of, well, everything.

    We’ve now done such a good job that there is a gross imbalance in the supply and demand bell curves. We have eliminated vast swathes of non-complex jobs. And now we’re working on robots to eliminate the countless McD employees who assemble fast food items.

    The simple fact is that we have people for whom there will never be jobs that benefit the economy. This is the 21st century world we have built.

    Somewhere along the line we clever people simply chose to ignore that there would be consequences of our actions. Its not that we didn’t know; we just didn’t do anything about it. We didn’t address the societal problems we knew we would cause. And we still don’t.

    This problem will not solve itself. It needs to be solved. And the first step is to stop using nomenclature such as “benefits” and “unemployed”. There are people who don’t want to be unemployed, and don’t want to be on benefits, they want to be able to work to support their family as their parents did for them, but the honest truth is that just wont happen ever again. Thus we need to figure out as a society what the future is for these people. For it certainly isn’t work. The genie is just not going to go back in the bottle.

    We need people to train for all the jobs that can’t be filled. 50% of businesses have trouble finding skilled staff. In todays paper, the MAIN problem holding back the Sth Is economy is finding skilled staff.

    No argument at all. But that is a different problem. You cant solve one problem with the other as we have an overload of people for whom the level of training required is outside their capability to reasonably accept that training.

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  113. For your argument to be correct, the reduction in the cost of living because of the high dollar leading to cheaper goods and services should mean people have more money to save and spend. If true, that would also mean a reduction of inequality. However that’s clearly not the case, and inequality has been increasing the fastest of all OECD countries… New Zealanders are still not able to save. The high dollar clearly doesn’t benefit the general public photon. That’s mainly because of middle men not passing on any savings.

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  114. Jackal says “You also argue that the GCSB undertaking illegal activity is trivial. That’s so deluded as to put you in the extreme fascist category.”

    It’s Sooo illegal, that despite months of work, Crown Law can’t tell us for sure if it is illegal, or isn’t illegal.

    But jackal – being such an expert in law – apparently already knows.

    In jackals world, if GCSB are investigating terrorists or an international criminal gang, they’ve not allowed to spy on, pass on any information, or help with any prosecution, of anyone in the group who has a NZ passport of gets residency.

    So if they overhear Kiwis in the group planning an attack, they’re legally not even allowed to tell anyone.

    That’s how stupid the current law may be (no one actually knows).

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  115. photonz1

    But jackal – being such an expert in law – apparently already knows.

    Here’s the actual law we’re talking about photon:

    Restrictions imposed on interceptions

    14 Interceptions not to target domestic communications

    Neither the Director, nor an employee of the Bureau, nor a person acting on behalf of the Bureau may authorise or take any action for the purpose of intercepting the communications of a person (not being a foreign organisation or a foreign person) who is a New Zealand citizen or a permanent resident.

    Even a simpleton RWNJ such as yourself photon should be able to understand that.

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  116. Jackal says “Even a simpleton RWNJ such as yourself photon should be able to understand that.”

    But the simpletons at Crown Law can’t – they should refer to law expert Jackal (remind me of your law qualifications and how many years you’ve worked in the field Todd?).

    What they are unsure of is whether contradictory laws allowing GCSB to work under police and SIS warrants takes precedent, or not.

    Either way, there were warrants allowing people being spied on.

    The crux of the matter isn’t whether spying allowed or not – just who was doing it.

    Hence it’s just another beat up about trivia.

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  117. I’m betting Dotcom’s ‘white paper’, due out next week, will rupture John Key’s pretty blue party balloon, terminally.

    Psssssssssssssssssssssshhhhhhhhttttttttttttt!!!!!!!

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  118. There are smarter transport priorities the Government should fund, rather than wasting more money on the Puhoi to Wellsford Holiday Highway, Green Party transport spokesperson Julie Anne Genter said today.

    The New Zealand Transport Agency has today announced it will spend $17.5 million on contractors for the consents process for the Puhoi to Wellsford route.

    “The Holiday Highway should not be a priority when far more important projects, like urgent safety upgrades to SH1 north of Puhoi and the Auckland City Rail Link, languish for want of funding,” said Ms Genter.

    “The Puhoi to Wellsford route carries relatively few cars, less than 20,000 per day. In contrast, there are more than 30,000 passenger trips on Auckland rail each day and the City Rail Link will double the network’s capacity.

    “The City Rail Link will not only allow tens of thousands more Aucklanders to travel by rail, it will free up Auckland’s congested roads for freight, commercial vehicles, and those who need to drive. The Puhoi to Wellsford highway would increase congestion in Auckland by facilitating sprawl and delivering more cars into the city.

    “The Government should aim for best value for money from the transport budget. That means investing in Auckland’s public transport system to decrease congestion and fixing the safety blackspots on SH1 now, not wasting millions more on a duplicate highway,” said Ms Genter.

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  119. Dont hold your breath greenfly,

    That “white paper” is just dotcom trying to get back into the headlines. Even granny herald is not featuring him anymore.

    Why wait a week, just to build up anticipation (worked in your case!!)?

    No one cares about dotcom, old news. A rich guy, who made money (by dubious means) that not many Kiwis relate to.

    Only the shallow and easily led.

    As for TERMINALLY popping a blue ballon?

    To be replaced by a multi millionairy led Labour party?

    Hahahahaha. The workers are sure going to vote for a “rich prick”

    Yeah right.

    And without Labour the Greens are nothing but opposition seat warmer uppers.

    So dont count those chickens yet, the great unwashed in Auckland are tired of (lifestyle block residing) Len Brown telling them to go and life in multistory shoe boxes.

    No, if the blue bubble is to burst, first Labour needs to get out and present some doable and common sense policies.

    Then possibly the Greens may have a say in the next government (if Labour wants them off course).

    The constant attacking brand Key is not working. Try another tack. You kinow, like presenting alternative policies and reforms!!

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  120. I’m betting Dotcom’s ‘white paper’, due out next week, will rupture John Key’s pretty blue party balloon, terminally.

    If by that you mean (a) that this is not an extreme view but a consensual view of Left Wing folk, and (b) it suggests that JK won’t be back at the next election, then the Left Wing are in for a highly disappointing time come the next balletarium.

    That is no reflection whatsoever on the treatment that .Com has received courtesy of the State of New Zealand.

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  121. Gerrit – yes, yes, but I’m betting Kim Dotcom has got the damning information that will sink Key. It won’t be long til we find out for sure, but I’m betting he has.

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  122. Gerrit says “No one cares about dotcom, old news. A rich guy, who made money (by dubious means) ”

    You’re allowed to call him what he is – a criminal.

    He has –
    – criminal convictions for fraud (11 counts)
    – criminal conviction for data espionage
    – criminal conviction for insider trading
    – criminal conviction for embezzlement

    He’s also been done for trafficking stolen card numbers, computer hacking, and many more charges.

    It just shows how low people will stoop to line up behind any old criminal if there’s a chance of scoring a few political points.

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  123. Photonz – Doesn’t Kimdotcom have the right to do the crime, and time and to be allowed the same consideration as someone who has “never broken the law”? Ever been done for speeding…does that make you a criminal for life??

    Gerrit – no-one needs to work that hard at “attacking the Key brand”. He’s doing a fine job of showing that it’s becoming difficult to keep track of all the untruths all by himself! Speaks volumes that in the last couple of days the ability to comment on his FB page has entirely evaporated…must be because of all the positive comments from the public, right?

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  124. Greenfly,

    Will you bet your house and land on it?

    Naw.

    So how sure are you that a criminal will bring down TERMINALLY the National party?

    Easy to place a bet without risking the family home and silver. Bit harder to go to the TAB and place a bet on dotcom TERMINALLY ousting the National party.

    I’m sure places like centrebet will take your promisary note to hand over your deeds to your property, at the odds you have offered.

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  125. Flis asks “Doesn’t Kimdotcom have the right to do the crime, and time and to be allowed the same consideration as someone who has “never broken the law”? ”

    Of course not. He repeatedly makes his money from ripping people off.

    The we get naive suckers lining up to defend him so he can rip more people off.

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  126. Gerrit – don’t be daft. I wouldn’t bet my house on anything, I’m not reckless, but I bet Dotcom’s revelations will “rupture John Key’s pretty blue party balloon, terminally.” It’s going to be interesting, next week, when Dotcom reveals his hand. I can hardly wait. It will be both entertaining and exciting. I do hope I’m right. I reckon I am. Quite frankly, I reckon Key’s in enough strife already over the spying and lying , without Dotcom’s ‘white paper’, and it’s the combination of those things that have me all attentive and not a little gleeful.
    I could be wrong, of course, I’m no clairvoyant, but I reckon…

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  127. Of course not. He repeatedly makes his money from ripping people off.

    So did Fay. And he got a knighthood.

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  128. Greenfly

    Hedging, hedging. Not to sure are you? Still we will wait with baited breath to the revalations from the mount.

    Problem is 2014 election is still 18 months away. Bit early to bring out the “big” :-) guns.

    Later next year I think the National party will expose Shearer for a “rich prick” hypocrite. Stashing away millions and singlehandedly financing the Labour party, just to try and make PM. Making sure that Labour will loose in 2014 (and taking the Greens hopes with them) as the South Auckland vote falls around their ears.

    Was going to put the house on that scenario but she who must be obeyed said no, so there you go.

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  129. Jeeze, Gerrit, of course I’m not sure. I can’t predict the future with 100% accuracy. I’m not hedging at all! I’m quite boldly stating that,
    “…Dotcom’s ‘white paper’, due out next week, will rupture John Key’s pretty blue party balloon, terminally.”
    I see you too have made a prediction. Good for you. I won’t demand that you “put your house on it” as I’m not daft.

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  130. Greenfly,

    Come on sonny jim, you said

    I’m betting Dotcom’s ‘white paper’, due out next week,

    So now you are not sure and not betting?

    Tell you what, take this bet with me then.

    If the Key government pretty blue party balloon does not pop next week, donate two bags of spuds to your favourate soup kitchen.

    I will do the same if the balloon does pop. I will publish the photos on my web site or on facebook to prove the Auckland City Mission received the two bag of spuds I donated if I lose the bet.

    You lose and you can publish the photos of the donation on your blog.

    Deal?

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  131. Done. Agreed. Yes. I’m in. Good fun!

    You have a website?

    Your name isn’t ‘live’, so I’ve not been able to follow it to your site. I’d love to read your website. What’s the URL?

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  132. I’ve just seen the Green Party Press Release about DOC changes undermining Cave Creek measures.

    Does anyone here have more detail handy regarding what the Green Party are actually claiming? As in, which measures are being changed that would result in risk?

    My own reading of the whole Cave Creek thing (I checked this out and wrote it up a couple of years ago) is that the biggest issue was a totally de-centralised DOC, with little or no consistency or organisation between its parts, and little clear effort by top-level management to improve the culture of high expectations with low resources. Under those circumstances, something like Cave Creek was always just a matter of time. DOC’s budget could have been doubled in 1995 but it would have been unclear where half the money went, because even DOC wasn’t tracking its own operations or spending in any coherent and centralised way. As an entity, DOC was hardly helping itself.

    Serious accidents like that can never be completely ruled out, but I really have trouble seeing a situation where something comparable to Cave Creek could happen again, even despite the recent cuts. Not because I think DOC has enough funds to manage its assets safely, but because the recent trend of today’s DOC when something is believed unsafe or inconclusive is often to simply remove the asset rather than fix it.

    This can lead to indirect tragedies like people drowning in rivers or dying of exposure at places where bridges and back-country huts had previously existed for good strategic reasons learned over decades or centuries, but without a DOC managed structure involved they become tragedies that can no longer be pinned on DOC’s faulty processes, which is what happened in Cave Creek. My guess with continued funding cuts and DOC’s recent trend towards backing high impact internationally-focused tourism (like Great Walks), which it finds easier to measure and report the impact of for its reporting of successes, is that we’ll continue to see safe managed facilities in traditional back-country recreation areas, but fewer of them.

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  133. Mike M says “or dying of exposure at places where bridges and back-country huts had previously existed for good strategic reasons learned over decades or centuries,”

    We’ve had local huts removed because they’re a bit run down, even though they’re the only refuge in big expanses of high country and have previously saved peoples lives.

    It’s insane. The lack of common sense in some DOC decisions leaves us shaking our heads in disbelief.

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  134. photon

    It’s insane. The lack of common sense in some DOC decisions leaves us shaking our heads in disbelief.

    The huts were demolished because of maintenance costs. After extensive cuts to their budget after National gained power in 2008, DOC was forced to find ways to save money, which is now leading to even more redundancies. If you truly think that the huts were beneficial photon, perhaps you should vote for a political party that will fund DOC properly.

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  135. Jackal – thanks for a great example of how extreme you are.

    Despite –
    – not knowing what huts I’m talking about
    – not knowing how many years ago they came down
    – not even knowing the reason they came down

    you’ve made up some reasons to suit your blinkered view of the world.

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  136. That’s partly true, @Jackal, but there are other issues running in parallel. There are recurring recent stories, for instance, of volunteer groups wanting to get involved in hut and track maintenance, but being locked out because DOC often insists on such high OSH-style standards. Groups like Permolat and the NZDA have had some success in some places, but there’s often so much bureaucracy involved that it’s beyond the ability of anyone to become officially involved except those with highly structured organisation ability.

    Personally I’m sceptical as to whether DOC should be so involved in its heavy push for international tourism, a-la Great Walks, when they shouldn’t be part of its core business. The Conservation Act specifically mandates DOC to foster recreation (for which basic back-country huts and basic tracks are beneficial), but it only instructs DOC to allow for tourism.

    Instead, however, we see DOC heavily investing in running major back-packing tourism conveyor belts of Great Walks, now being even more strongly promoted to visitors from overseas via Air New Zealand. Sure, kiwis can book them long in advance and use them, but the main target of these walks tends to be overseas backpackers. By comparison with typical kiwi culture for recreation in alternative parts of the back-country they’ve become rather exclusive. The Great Walk style of recreation doesn’t foster an ongoing encouragement of learning about, visiting and understanding the outdoors. It only fosters one-off nurtured holidays.

    Giant luxury huts with facilities like pre-provided gas for heating and cooking, often completely wasted by visitors simply because it’s there. (I once visited an Abel Tasman hut when the young backpacking tourists had the heaters on full blast during the latter part of an already warm day!) Helicopters are on standby down south to fly people between huts when the rivers come up too much, not for any safety reason but because everything would back up horribly and critically, to the point of falling apart, if the mechanism stops churning for just a day. While bridges are being removed in parts of the country due to lack of funds to maintain them, several of the Great Walks sometimes have pre-fabricated bridges on standby so they can be flown in and inserted as soon as the existing ones are washed away! And the knee-jerk reaction through media to DOC cuts?? That DOC should be charging more for the use of these facilities!

    So DOC “fosters recreation”, but I’m not convinced it always clearly distinguishes between recreation for long term New Zealand residents (which was probably the intent of the Conservation Act) and short term visitors who are as likely to leave the country within a few months or sooner.

    Personally (and I haven’t thought this through very much) I’d be looking at simplifying some of these facilities as much as possible, telling tourists that if they want a comfortable and safe trip with little or no outdoor experience, they should be paying the real cost to a concession operator to give them that experience and to bring their own cooking equipment and properly warm sleeping bags and to clean the huts out behind them, and so on, and maybe even climbing over a tree root in the middle of a track from time to time.

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  137. photon

    Jackal – thanks for a great example of how extreme you are.

    Are you saying that it’s extreme to point out that budget cuts since National gained power in 2008 have led to DOC removing backcountry huts? Because if that’s your claim photon, you’re wrong!

    Here’s a list of backcountry huts removed and not available for accommodation (PDF), that shows some sixty backcountry huts have been removed. Many of these huts have been removed under the current national government because of funding cuts.

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  138. Jackals says “Many of these huts have been removed under the current national government because of funding cuts.”

    And many on the list are part of the large numbers that were removed after the 2003/2004 DOC review.

    Jackal says “budget cuts since National gained power in 2008″

    So please tell us – what is the difference between the 2008 and 2012 DOC budgets?

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  139. You could look at the recent examples, starting mid-last-year, of DOC wanting to abandon/close/remove up to 50% of the tracks and huts in the Ruahine Range. (Side note — Ruahine Forest Park has more back-country huts than any other park in the country. It was seriously hammered with the Forest Service’s pest management strategy in the 50s and 60s, and now it’s popular with trampers and hunters in-season.)

    Again, I’m sure funding plays a role here because DOC is perpetually trying to ration the funding that it has available, but I think there are also other issues regarding how DOC chooses to manage its back-country recreation network.

    I think regular back-country huts are considered an annoyance by the accountants in DOC. They tend to be low cost, but it’s very difficult to measure anything about their use. Hut tickets and hut passes are bought for use within any hut in the country, and the only way to know where people have used them is to look for ticket stubs in the huts, and reports in the books. The latter doesn’t guarantee that a person actually paid anything, and the former is useless for people with hut passes because they don’t leave stubs.

    Add to this that it’s a total honesty system that tends to penalise honest people. There’s a significant resistance in paying for hut tickets generally for various reasons. eg. Some cheapo backpackers just don’t care about paying when they can get away with it (there’s a culture of certain visitors often treating huts as if they’re free), and certain sub-sections of the hunting community in particular reckon they pay more than enough in taxes and do a lot of unofficial maintenance regardless.

    But even for all the people who do pay, and there are lots, it’s very hard to measure and to demonstrate nice happy numbers in the Management Reports about the amount of recreation DOC’s fostering, and where it’s happening, compared with what it’s spending on recreation and where it’s being spent. Compare this with Great Walk Recreation, where DOC knows exactly how many people are using it, and exactly how much it’s spending, and exactly how much people are paying…. it really doesn’t matter that many of them are a long way from NZ population centres, only represent specific one-off experiences instead of a range of experiences, and tend to cater far more heavily to overseas visitors than to local residents.

    And I think this is also why we’re seeing trends towards taking huts off the ticket system (such as Powell and Jumbo, east of Masterton), and putting them onto independent specific-attraction-based booking systems. This really only works for the most accessible huts on the edges, but there’s a big motivation for DOC conservancies to divert resources to these huts, make them as kindergarten-easy as possible to reach, try to get everyone and everything to book them and go to them (nice and easy to count and measure if you chuck a volunteer ranger in there), but it’s at the expense of attention to the rest of the network.

    In DOC’s accounting eyes, and especially since DOC started actively documenting and managing its individual structures after Cave Creek, I’m pretty sure that regular back-country huts, and other structures like bridges, are just treated as a liability. Even when they’re low cost, simply having them on the books means they have to be managed in the system. They have to be checked from time to time, and there’s always a risk that they might require maintenance. I’m pretty sure that DOC would rather be managing a network of 200 or 300 back-country huts instead of 900 to 1000.

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  140. photon

    So please tell us – what is the difference between the 2008 and 2012 DOC budgets?

    In 2008, DOC spent $17.9 million on huts. In 2009, it was $16.5 million. In 2010, it was $17.2 million. In 2011, it was $17.4 million. In 2012, $18.3 million was spent… Adjusting for inflation, that’s a reduction of $1.7 million on the 2008 allocation. If we include years 2009 to 2012, that’s an overall reduction in funding for huts of $7.5 million.

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  141. greenfly has been caught out falsely claiming Key breached the GCSB employment process.

    Failing to come up with ANY evidence of the process that was supposedly being breached, he weakly says …..”Photonz1 is alone in believing that there isn’t a process that the Prime Minister should follow for the recruitment of Head Spook. maybe Brian Edwards shares the delusion, so that’s two. Only.”

    And the Auditor-General.

    She won’t be investigating the employment process because the Prime Minister was entitled to have “considerable discretion” over how the appointment is made, and who he chooses.

    To quote the ODT “Auditor General Lyn Provost said the Prime Minister has responsibility for the appointment and NO SPECIFIC PROCESS WAS SET OUT FOR MAKING THAT APPOINTMENT unlike chief executives of other government departments”

    Did you get that greenfly? “NO SPECIFIC PROCESS WAS SET OUT FOR MAKING THAT APPOINTMENT”

    So greenfly’s repeated insistence that Key was breaching the process, are outright lies – totally false accusations.

    How many other accusations have you just completely made up with no evidence whatsoever?

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  142. Quite right, I was wrong in thinking that there was a procedure in place. It almost beggars belief that a PM, whether Clark or Key, could have that much un-checked power when it comes to choosing the Head Spook, but there it is. The process for selecting the spy-guy and the person Key chose wasn’t however, my concern. I was pointing to Key’s shiftiness and un-believable denials around his actions. That sly lying-by-omission is still engaging many ‘investigators’ and I believe they are right to smell a rat there.

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  143. photonz1 said: “Ooooohhhh – someone accusing Key of being central in the appointment of Fletcher – EXACTLY WHAT HE IS SUPPOSED TO DO !!!!!”

    I would argue (now) that while Key is entitled to shoulder-tap whomsoever he wants to, he should, for the sake of transparency and democratic integrity, take a fairer course. The reason people are mistrustful over how Fletcher was appointed (and why) is because they see the potential for abuse of power under the system that allows a PM to act unilaterally. That Key can do it, doesn’t mean he should do it. He could have chosen a more openly democratic path to take.

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  144. @Jackal, do you have a breakdown of what DOC spent on Great Walk huts and other huts on booking systems, compared with what DOC spent on all the other back-country huts on the ticket/pass system?

    I tried asking DOC directly a couple of years ago, and was given a figure of “about $16.5 million” for the year ending June 2009, but the guy refused to break it apart from me between different types of huts. For the same time period, compare this with the $3.9m that DOC received for Great Walk Hut bookings, and a further $1.279m for regular back-country hut tickets and passes.

    I was asking at the time because DOC had recently announced an increase in costs for regular back-country hut tickets and passes, claiming that they were so expensive to run and manage, but to me it just seems an increased penalty on people who actually pay at all. Obviously they cost a certain amount and tickets were never intended to pay for the full cost of hut maintenance, but considering the substantial difference in standards between GW/booked huts and everything else, I’d love to see how much DOC spent on its high end internationally promoted tourist business compared with the $3.9 million of revenue it directly generated. I’d guess it’s well over $3.9 million of the $16.5 million total, at least.

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  145. photonz1

    Did you get that greenfly? “NO SPECIFIC PROCESS WAS SET OUT FOR MAKING THAT APPOINTMENT”

    There are guidelines that are meant to be followed for making such an appointment photonz1. If the Prime Minister wants to diverge away from those guidelines, he’s meant to put that in writing and make the relevant agencies aware of the change to the process.

    “No specific process was set out for making that appointment” is a failure of the Prime Minister to set out a process he was going to follow that diverged away from the guidelines. That’s also a requirement under the unspecific process ie guidelines that John Key appears to have completely ignored.

    So while the Auditor-General is technically correct, that there is no “specific” process to be followed, there are guidelines that should be followed. Key did not follow those guidelines in appointing his mate Ian Fletcher to be the head of the GCSB.

    I’ve written further about Keys dodgy appointment here.

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  146. Jackal claims Key broke the legislation.

    But couldn’t come up with any broken legislation.

    Jackal claims Key broke the “constitutional process”.

    But could come up with any broken constitutional process.

    Jackal claims Key broke the “proper process”.

    But could come up with any broken constitutional process.

    Now jackal claims it was only “guidelines” that were broken.

    Now Jackal will fail to show us the broken guidelines.

    Because as the Auditor general says, unlike other heads of departments, there is no specific process for appointing the head of GSCB.

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  147. MikeM

    @Jackal, do you have a breakdown of what DOC spent on Great Walk huts and other huts on booking systems, compared with what DOC spent on all the other back-country huts on the ticket/pass system?

    I found that information in the Department of Conservations annual reports. I don’t think they get as specific as you would like, but there’s some good information there:

    Department of Conservation Annual Report 2008 (PDF).
    Department of Conservation Annual Report 2009 (PDF).
    Department of Conservation Annual Report 2010 (PDF).
    Department of Conservation Annual Report 2011 (PDF).
    Department of Conservation Annual Report 2012 (PDF).

    Otherwise I suggest making an Official Information Act request to Nick Smith.

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  148. photonz1 – there will be readers who are quite turned-on by your gloating and SHOUTING, but I’m betting (2 bags of potatoes:-) those people don’t read Frogblog.
    To take issue with your gloating/bloated claims earlier:

    “So greenfly’s repeated insistence that Key was breaching the process, are outright lies – totally false accusations.”
    you surely must realise that, being mistaken about the requirements for appointing Head Spooks, I wasn’t lying, I was mistaken. You fling terms around very carelessly, and that’s one you should take more care with. Also “stupid”, which you seem to have a particular love for.

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  149. photon

    Now Jackal will fail to show us the broken guidelines.

    I’ve linked to the guidelines that John Key didn’t follow photonz1. Those guidelines are based on best practice to ensure there’s no actual or perceived bias in making appointments to prominent positions.

    The appointment process for the head of the GCSB should follow the guidelines, and if there’s divergence from those guidelines, then the PM should make his changes formally in writing.

    Whether you like it or not photonz1, there is perceived bias in the way Ian Fletcher was appointed by his mate John Key to head the GCSB… It looks, smells and tastes like cronyism to me. Perhaps a law change is required to ensure such public perceptions aren’t exacerbated?

    greenfly

    Also “stupid”, which you seem to have a particular love for.

    Being called an “extremist” and a “cultist” says more about photonz1 having lost it than anything else.

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  150. As predicted, jackal fails to show the guidelines for appointing the head of GCSB.

    greenfly says ” I wasn’t lying, I was mistaken.”

    So continuing to claim Key was breaking process, even though you failed to find any evidence there even was one, was just a “mistake” – not a lie.

    Yeah right.

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  151. photonz1

    As predicted, jackal fails to show the guidelines for appointing the head of GCSB.

    I’ve already linked to the guidelines that govern appointing the head of the GCSB… Here’s the link again just for photonz1. You’re welcome to highlight where it says the appointment process for the director of the GCSB is different?

    There’s also a constitutional process outlined in the Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003 (PDF).

    When the Auditor-General says there’s no specific process to be followed, that doesn’t mean there’s no process at all. It appears that there’s a key word your cognitive dissonance has ignored in that sentence you quoted from photonz1.

    Obviously there does need to be a process, and some of that process is formalized in law…. However most of the process is governed by guidelines only, which the Prime Minister can apparently breach with impunity if the Ian Fletcher appointment is anything to go by.

    So continuing to claim Key was breaking process, even though you failed to find any evidence there even was one, was just a “mistake” – not a lie.

    You continue to claim that there’s no process at all photonz1, when there clearly is one… I’ve linked to it twice now.

    Were you mistaken or just telling lies again photon?

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