28 Jun 2009

Pomp, circumstance and Arrogance

The following links provide ample evidence of the lack of policy and the incredible arrogance of the present NACT government as they slash and burn the NZ economy in the quest to allow their traditional support base to feed at the tax payers' expense.






A sorry record of ignoring advice, of hammering the taxpayers, of rewarding the affluent arrogant with targeted funding to support private schools at the expense of the state schools, night classes, early childhood education and those that need specialist assistance in the school system.

Trough Feeding Time for NACT

The evidence of the arrogance and pomp attitudes that are the hall marks of the Key NACT government are manifesting themselves in the profligate expenditure of the present cabinet.There are no excuses for this especially when the same men are constantly criticising the voters for not saving, for over spending and reckless use of credit.

Let's stop the hypocrisy and stop feeding at the taxpayer's expense and get on with demonstrating that somewhere and somewhen there are effective policies hiding under the crosby-textor spin that got you elected.

From the press-gallery:

"Mr Goff said National ministers had spent $739,000 on travel in the first three months of the year -- more than double the $336,000 Labour ministers spent in the same period last year.

"It's straight hypocrisy for the Government to call for others to exercise restraint while applying a different standard for themselves," he said."

But Mr Key said it was Mr Goff who was being hypocritical.

"It is unbelievable hypocrisy for Mr Goff to criticise ministerial spending when as trade, foreign affairs and defence minister during the last nine years of a Labour government, he would have racked up hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of spending on travel," he said.

Yes, but Mr. Goff was actually doing his job and not masquerading as a cabinet minister as people like Richard Worth, Pansy Wong, Rodney Hide, Tony Ryall, Pita Sharples, Tiria Turia and Maurice Williamson did or do.

"Our spending is totally understandable for a new Government that is seeking to build relationships with governments of other countries for the benefit of New Zealand and its economy."

Come on.... the impact on the world stage of the present NACT cabinet is summed up as a "Resounding Silence". Compared to Helen Clark and Phil Goff the present NACT representatives are but gnats.

Mr Goff also said Mr Key had doubled the number of ministerial staffers earning more than $100,000 a year and approved the hiring of consultants on rates of up to $2000 a day.

"In a mean-minded act, the Government has also taken away $2.5 million funding for severely disabled children at school which may make it impossible for some children to continue to attend school."

Mr Goff said he was dealing with distraught mothers and concerned teachers about the damage the cuts were causing.

"This shows just how out of touch the Government is with the people it is hurting and the perverse priorities it is following in cutting help to the most vulnerable while spending more on itself."

True. At a time when actions should reflect the rhetoric the NACT government retreats into the arrogance of its past traditions and rides on the taxpayers' wallets.

27 Jun 2009

National's McJobs to hide policy Failure

Gordon Campbell's opinion piece examining the paucity of policy behind the McJobs policy announced by Paula Bennett and the corresponding lack of policy examination by NACT support party - The Maori Party is well worth the read.

25 Jun 2009

Who is Pulling Paula Bennett's strings then?

This opinion piece from the CEO of MacDonalds in the UK sounds just like the prepared statement by welfare minister Paula Bennett in little old N.Z. Which leads one o ask- just which big business is pulling the NACT government's strings and who, in particular, is twanging on Paula Bennett's strings?

23 Jun 2009

Bennett's Benefit Brevity

It is reassuring to hear that the traditional NACT policies are succeeding in their usual manner - unemployment is increasing at 1100 a week and the number of people on benefits has reached 302000 - the highest since 2005, and that Social Welfare Minister Paula Bennett's solution is to simply let everything, from welfare through to the Family Commission fiasco that is Christine Rankin, go west as she looks to her weather vane leader to vacillate towards another off the cuff unresearched scheme that will resonate with emptiness in the Herald's PR pages.

21 Jun 2009

PRISON HULKS.- a modest proposal

A Modern Prison Hulk - note the use of shipping containers

This latest proposal from the deep intellects of the present cabinet would support the contention that N.Z. has entered a phase of talibanisation by embracing the "great leap backward."

Corrections Minister Judith Collins is releasing the numbers on a proposal to house prisoners in shipping containers.

The Government is looking at the idea as a way of dealing with rising prisoner numbers, while reducing the costs of new prison facilities to taxpayers.

Ms Collins says putting the container option into existing prisons would cost between $53,000 and $63,000 per bed. She says using the same approach in a new prison development would cost around $370,000 per bed.

Perhaps an even greater cost saving could be made by purchasing a cruise liner that has reached the end of its economic and sea worthiness life and, instead of sending it to the breakers yard, mooring it out off the Manukau Heads and shipping the prisoners to it.

The prisoners would be away from the cities and towns where they are causing problems (thus keeping Melissa Lee and others like her safe in their bigotory-blue themed worlds ), they would be housed in cells that already exist, they would be far enough away from land that escape would be almost impossible ( diligent feeding of sharks around the hulks would provide added security) thus reducing the number of guards needed while the prisoners could be gainfully employed constantly pumping the bilges to keep themselves afloat.

I'm sure that the economics of this modest propsal would keep the Treasury wonks in happiness pills for a considerable time although the person, like Judith "Crusher" Collins, who would seriously front such a proposal could be described as having a brain that if placed on the head of a pin it would roll around like a dried pea on an eight lane highway.

20 Jun 2009

The Engkeylish Government crumbles?

Commentary from the right wing and Granny Herald indicate that disillusionment with their favourite sons is beginning to set in.

First: Rodney's favourite: Mr. Garrott: (sorry...... Garrett)

A Government MP has been reprimanded for lewd conduct just weeks after the resignation of National's Richard Worth.

Act MP David Garrett was spoken to by party leader Rodney Hide after making sexual comments to a female member of the party's Parliamentary office.

Hide said last night he had cause to speak to Garrett after learning the fledgling MP had made "off-colour" remarks. He said he hoped the incident would not lead to the end of Garrett's career as a member of Parliament.

Garrett is one of the drivers behind Act's "Three Strikes" policy - and this incident makes for his own second strike. Garrett also came under fire when he compared homosexuality to paedophilia on TVNZ's Eye to Eye show, after he had been drinking.

The new allegations have earned the National-led government a warning that it risks becoming branded as a "government of sleaze". INDEED!!

Second: Key Apologist - Bill Ralston:

In dismissing the need for better political management he shows he is not really a politician. After almost three decades in the business Goff is truly a politician.

Goff understands that a government can be slowly undermined by all the "white noise".

He served as a minister in two governments in which that happened. Labour lost power last year, even though the economy was still strong and it was continuing to deliver the goods to its constituency. It lost because it was gradually overcome by the "white noise" and the public lost faith.

The Government needs to learn it might ignore the "distractions" but that doesn't mean they will go away and the consequences can be fatal.

Third: Matt McCarten: on the Melissa Lee fiasco:

The campaign was deserted by the leadership

Does Key get it that by-elections are national campaigns? Anyone can hold the job as leader when things go well. The test of a leader is when things are not going well. Key failed. He picked Lee against the wishes of the locals, he didn't get his experienced people taking ownership of the campaign and he just wasn't there. But the unforgivable act was Key's holiday on by-election weekend. The best he could do was send Lee a text. None of his senior ministers or even his president was there. Lee was left to face the massacre alone, like a stunned possum in a car's headlights.

If this is how National copes under stress in a campaign, I hope the recession doesn't get too difficult. This by-election shows us that our Prime Minister and his Cabinet can't be counted on when things get tough.

Fourth: Rodney Hide's puppet master - the Nosferatu of NZ politics- Roger Douglas:

"This only enforces the emerging trend we have seen between Mr Key and Mr English. Mr Key announces a stupid idea - be it a cycleway or forced investment in New Zealand - Mr English realises the idea is stupid, and distances himself from it.

"The Prime Minister then becomes hell-bent on scoring another symbolic victory over the Finance Minister - who backs down and Mr Key gets his way. But these battles are only resulting in pyrrhic victories - neither the cycleway nor forced investment will make New Zealand better long term.

"The trend is towards an obsession with massaging Mr Key's political image, at the expense of New Zealand's long term prospects.

Fifth: Brian Rudman: On the decision to waste the Rate Payers' money on a grandiose booze barn or John Key's "Party Central"

Brian Rudman: Government bullies pushing city a wharf too far

Sixth: Christine Rankin's decision to front the support whacking your kids campaign despite the assurance from John Key that she would not be involved in actively campaigning on the issue:

Families Commissioner Christine Rankin's decision to be a face of the "vote no" campaign for the smacking referendum is "quite incredible", Green MP Sue Bradford says.

Ms Bradford was the architect of a 2007 law change which removed the defence of reasonable force in child abuse cases. Ms Rankin vehemently opposed the law change and was spokeswoman of For The Sake Of Our Children Trust.

Tomorrow Ms Rankin will front at the launch of a campaign urging voters to vote no to the question "should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence in New Zealand"?

That is despite Prime Minister John Key last week saying he would not expect Ms Rankin to continue to campaign against the law change, and the Families Commission saying it supported the new law.

One can only echo the favourite word of the National Party Bloggers: "INDEED!!"

14 Jun 2009

Ralston,bloggers, journalists, photographs and things

Bill Ralston's commentary on the sorry saga that is the Worth affair is an indictment on someone who claims to be a reputable senior journalist and political commentator, at least in the small journalism pond that is Auckland.
It is a poor effort because it is obviously derivative of the spin lines being provided by the National Party HO sourced blogsites - the repeated mantra of a "purposely created honey trap" set and sprung on a poor and unsuspecting Richard Worth by a woman who had been primed to do so by forces greater than herself.
The line is then spun out for credibility sake with photographs of Ms Choudary at various functions around Auckland where she is seen posing beside Labour Party MPs from Helen Clark down with the assertion that Ms Choudary is, therefore, a high ranking activist because she unsuccessfully nominated for the Botany Electorate in 2008.
One should be clear about Ms Choudary's involvement in the NZLP to assess how high ranking she is. Enquiries would indicate that she is not a member of the NZ Council of the Labour Party. She is not an active member of any of the NZLP's policy committees and she is not a member of any of the Party's regional committees.
All that can be substantiated is that she is, or has been, a member of the Botany Electorate Committee and was involved in the Botany Campaign during 2008. She is or was also heavily involved in the various Indian community groups through out Auckland.
To imagine her, as Ralston and others in the NACT spin machine have attempted to do, as a high ranking activist is to allow one's imagination to soar to stratospheric levels.
We should, if we were objective, be wary of any collection of photographs showing an individual in close proximity to any person of status, be it political or social, for these merely record the prescence of the individual at a function where he or she could meet and be seen. For example a photograph of Ralston, Slater and Farrar with Clinton and Obama doesn't suddenly make them high ranking members of the American Democratic Party or personal friends of Clinton and Obama. It simply meeans that Ralston and company took the opportunity to be snapped in the company of Clinton and Obama and, perhaps, use the photograph to enhance their own petty status.
One could contend that Ms. Choudary is in the same situation as the Ralston example - that she has been a regular attender at functions where she could be seen to rub shoulders with MPs and others and that she, like many people, especially those from countries where meeting and or seeing one's MP is a remote possibility, has taken the opportunity to be photographed in their company.
One wouldn't be surprised if, on digging through files of photographs taken at functions hosted by the Indian community during the 2008 election at which there were National Party MPs looking for support one could find photographs of Ms Choudary and others like her posing beside Key, English, Williamson and Worth etc. These photographs could easily be construed as implying that Ms Choudary was a high ranking member of the National Party.
One could also presume that these MPs encouraged such photographs to be taken without enquiring about the political persuasion of the Indian, Korean, Chinese, Japanese... person concerned because such a photograph could be used for political advantage - a photographic endorsement of the National Party policies from the members of the ethnic community concerned.
Perhaps, too, Mr Worth attempted to recruit Ms Choudary to the National Party as he probably did, during the election campaign, to all people who he may have come in contact with in the hope that this would give him an in to the community. That he attempted to carry this invitation past the enquiry about the individual's possibilty of joining his campaign was his "honey trap" and his own nemesis.

12 Jun 2009

A review worth Reading-How the Money speculators took the world for a ride.

From the New York Times comes this gem of a book review recounting how the money speculators thought they had a magic solution to make debt disappear.

One wonders if the Engkeylish NACT government has learnt anything about economics considering that the PM was a key player on the money speculation market and his present puppet masters English & Hide are devotees of the mysticismof speculative policies, privatisation and the mantra "the market will regulate itself."

11 Jun 2009


Saturday's by-election in Mt.Albert offers the electorate the chance to send a strong message to the Engkeylish NACT government by returning David Shearer with a huge majority and dropping the NACT candidates to 3rd & 4th places.
Here are ten good reasons for voting Shearer on Saturday:
1) A budget that has broken most of the key promises on the campaign pledge card and which seems designed to drive the country deeper into recession.

2) A government which insists on rail-roading through the Hide "destroy local government" policies with the super-city dictate which will lead to the sale of local assets in another asset stripping grab of the public assets.

3) A government that insists on driving a motorway through a community and thus gut its heart and its identity.

4) A government that has slashed and burnt the education vote and thus cut out the investment in the country's future.

5) A government that has the briefing papers and policies ready to sell off the telecom "kiwishare" and remove the free local calling entitlement the original privatisation schemes retained to placate the public as the family silver got hocked off.

6) A government that has set out to destroy the investment in the superannuation schemes designed and set in place by the Labour government to the extent where the advice being given to the cabinet is to seriously look to raising the GSTaxation from 12.5% to 15% and / or raise the age of eligibility to 67+.

7) A government that whose sole contribution to the key tourism portfolio is to saddle the Auckland ratepayers with a $100 million bill to pay for a monument to self-indulgence with 2011 Party Central. (Hardly an investment Rodney Hide would advocate a local body involving itself with as building and investing in the entertainment industry would be outside its core business.)

8) A government whose Social Welfare Minister endorsed a profligate pro-child assault campaigner to the family commission to protect the rights of the family!

9) A government that has been exposed as having a Cabinet Minister who has been accused of offering appointment to government boards and committees in exchange for sexual favours.

10) A government whose candidate, Melissa Lee,has the wit and intelligence to declare that: a) building a motorway through a community will prevent South Aucklanders driving into the area to commit crimes - a calculated insult to all residents of South Auckland and to the intelligence of the Mt.Albert residents and voters.
(b) she, a list MP on $131,000 + expenses is a low paid worker. To claim that she is being paid $2.00 an hour and obviuosly under paid while speaking to an audience of pensioners and minimum hourly rate workers certainly demonstrates a connection with the electorate and an ability to empathise with the "ordinary voter". Perhaps Ms. Lee thinks she is a genuine welfare beneficary?

10 Jun 2009

Super City - disposal of Assets

The latest Cabinet briefing paper on Local Body Reform does not bode well for the residents and ratepayers of N.Z. cities and towns. If the definition of core services is as narrow as reports indicate (local roading, water, sewage, rubbish disposal ) then expect to see your local council gutted and your local ratepayer purchased assets disposed of in a fire sale to any bidder who may appear and expect those assets that do not provide a rapid return to the private / foreign owner who may appear from either increased charges or restructuring and part sale of spun off "companies" or that which can be transformed into businesses to be run down and slowly but surely disappear as community services.
Watch out for libraries, community halls, art galleries, museums, swimming pools..., to be the first services to be affected. The rhetoric of ACT lovcal body councillors in the Eastern Suburbs and those of the Key favoured mayor for the Hide created Auckland would indicate that their philosophy is "I'm a moneyed philistine who doesn't use the public library / community services .. so why should anyone else have to need to use these services?"
Remember that it was John Banks and the Citizens & Ratepayers who were responsible for the disposal of community housing in Auckland before the Hubbard mayorality. It was also John Banks who wanted the Council to invest in V8 street racing at the Ratepayers expense with no reward to the Ratepayers. Remember it is the John Banks lead group in the present Council who appear to think that Mobile Library services are not core business activities for the Council.

To advocate referenda on the activities of the Councils but to deny the ratepayer citizens of greater Auckland the chance to vote on the wisdom of high cost spending to destroy the administration infrastructure of Auckland is a further demonstration of the dictatorial policy processes we are seeing in the Engkeylish government and must be opposed at all costs if we are to retain our sense of community and participation in the activities of our cities and towns.

7 Jun 2009

Texts From Last Night for what it is worth

The sort of message that has consumed the media recently appears to be a phenomena amongst those of a certain intellect, frame of mind and alcohol induced brilliance.
Perhaps the list MP for Epsom got his inspiration from these illuminaries whose literay skills with the text phone are recorded for all to see: textsfromlastnight. They demonstrate that while the memory may fade the text lives on.
Despite Mr Key's refusal to acknowledge the existence of the texts and Mr. Worth's denials and protestations of innocence the memories on cell phones live on and will not go away as these public embarassments reveal.

4 Jun 2009

Enough said - Dutch courage = Key's strategy

Key used the equivalent of a political gun earlier in the day in announcing the effective sacking of Worth, and joked he could have done with a drink himself.

"The day I had today, it's a shame the pub wasn't open at 8am, I might have given a better speech."

We all remember another Nat PM who needed a drink to give his speeches don't we?

Hardly a recommendation for a man who is playing at Prime Minister.

The list of questionable decisions and MPs grows longer every day: Here's the six month mark tally.

Bennett & the Rankin appointment?




Who next???

3 Jun 2009

Key proves to be worthless.

A RECORD ACHIEVEMENT- 6 months and yet another scandal in the NACT Government!!

The wheels are coming off the crosby-textor NACT Party with Key having to front up to announce the resignation of one of his friends from cabinet after coming under investigation by the Police for criminal matters.
As the history reveals Key had every opportunity to sack Worth much earlier than this but his despite his reputation as the "smiling assasin" Key vacillated and failed to purge himself of the political embarassment of his Epsom List MP. (A pity he couldn't also get rid of the canary NACT MP incumbent in Epsom as well.)