Thursday, 30 April 2009
We are sitting in the Koru lounge and it has been interesting to watch the sycophants make a beeline for Michael Cullen and shake his hand.
Why we wonder. The bastard left the books in a bloody mess. He was a weaselly horrible little man who despite being a good debater lost any respect from us, because his wit was always laden with venom.
Unlike David Lange whose enemies would still smile as he cut them off at the knees, like this wee gem:
After a hard fought nomination fight, only one National Party candidate stood in Lange's way. Clem Simich was standing for the seat too.
"In those days Mangere didn't have buses going through it, many didn't have cars that worked, but there was always the tell-tale parts of broken down vehicles all over the road where the kids had been playing.
"National decided to impress by sending in a motorcade. There came Clem. He swept through in a Rolls Royce with a Bentley in behind.
"I said 'Go around Clem, go around again!"
David Lange roared into life, arms waving, excited at the punch-line of his account.
So we are glad to see the end of the uppity little wanker and his acid sarcasm.
It was interesting to note that Tracy Watkins in the Dom Post this morning reckoned his final speech was "reserved."
Of course - when you emasculated someone as Key has done to Cullen, offering him a plum post you tend to be just a little calmer...
Accepting that post showed just how shallow and unprincipled the little prick is.
Heres the missive
Kia ora koutou,
I’ve just been selected as the Green Party’s candidate for the Mt Albert by-election. I wanted to get in touch with you straight away – to tell you why I’m running, and to ask for your help.
We’re putting up a Co-Leader as our candidate because a lot of what’s important to Auckland is important to the Green Party. Our vision for a sustainable, fair, peaceful, and democratic Aotearoa resonates with many Aucklanders, particularly in Mt Albert, which is one of our strongest electorates in the country.
Interesting - I didnt know that.
It’s true that I’ll be the underdog, but I think we can put together a great campaign and really hold the big guys in the old parties to account on issues like healthy local democracy, a transport network that really works for Aucklanders, clean water, and every Kiwi’s right to a fair go. It’s also a chance to build our Party and reach out to Auckland more than ever before.
We can hear the woof woof yap yap from here
Should the Green Party pull off an upset win in Mt Albert, the Chief Electoral Office has advised that another list member, Dave Clendon, would join the Greens in Parliament. Getting a 10th MP, of such a high calibre, would really be the icing on the cake. It’s important for you to know that no matter who wins the Mt Albert seat it will have no impact on the Government’s majority in Parliament. And, I also want you to know that if I win, I’ll move back up to Auckland.
Well that sets it out nice and clear.
Next comes the ‘how’ and that’s where I need your help. To run an outstanding campaign we’re going to need the energy, passion and resources of our whole movement. Please help:
· Campaign on the ground in Mt Albert. We need people for doorknocking, leafleting, putting up billboards, scrutineering on June 13, data entry, helping at public events and meetings, liaising with community groups. Please contact Tony.Dunn@greens.org.nz my campaign manager.
· Donate to the campaign fund. We've already raised $14,000 but to run a serious campaign our goal has to be $40,000. You can contribute directly by setting up an AP or making a one-off donation to the following account:
Going to be a very interesting campaign.
Wednesday, 29 April 2009
This is shaping up to be a serious battle between the Government and the Ngai Tahu.
What we know is the ETS will cost the tribe. Equally arguing with the Crown over the trees will cost the tribe. Not good.
Alf is a funny fellow and he digs up some good stuff. Today is no exception as he notes that Plant and Food research used sex to hook the media into a story.
Its about the Sterile Moth programme. Basically you get lotsa moths that are destroying stuff ( painted apple moth springs to mind) and you nuke the blokes. Blue balls. no fire power. Now you have to nuke em so they dont get sick and their wings fall off so they still mate..but fire blanks.
Much fun. We always reckoned that when they expired there was a market for the dead ones as glow in the dark bugs for kids bedrooms.
Climate change is an argument of two sides as this story in the Australian shows and we are squarely on the side of the non believers. Yeah, things may be hotting up (a bit) but we are not convinced that the human element is the key driver.
But the Australian has a lovely bit about how ex Midnight Oil frontman and now Eco Minister for the Rudd Government Peter Garrett has been caught bullshitting.
<--------Its all to do with this pic of the Wilkins Ice Shelf
So Garrett has now pulled back on claims that we will be swamped by a sea rise of 6M. He used the break up of the Wilkins Ice shelf to prove his point that global warming was dramatic.
Mr Garrett claimed the break-up of the Wilkins ice shelf in West Antarctica indicated sea level rises of 6m were possible by the end of the century, and that ice was melting across the continent.
The Environment Minister later sought to distance himself from his comments.A study released last week by the British Antarctic Survey concluded that sea ice around Antarctica had been increasing at a rate of 100,000sqkm a decade since the 1970s.
While the Antarctic Peninsula, which includes the Wilkins ice shelf and other parts of West Antarctica were experiencing warmer temperatures, ice had expanded in East Antarctica, which is four times the size of West Antarctica.
British newspaper The Observer this month published prominently a story with a photograph of breaks in the Wilkins shelf.
"A huge ice shelf in the Antarctic is in the last stages of collapse and could break up within days in the latest sign of how global warming is thought to be changing the face of the planet," the story began.
In March last year, US news agency msn published the same photograph with a similar story that began: "A vast ice shelf hanging on by a thin strip looks to be the next chunk to break off from the Antarctic Peninsula, the latest sign of global warming's impact on Earth's southernmost continent." The photograph was published by numerous other outlets, including The Australian.
A spokeswoman for the British Antarctic Survey said the photograph in both stories was taken in March last year.
Nationals Senate leader Barnaby Joyce said the misuse of the photograph and the similar story lines 13 months apart reflected how the Wilkins ice shelf break-up was being recycled annually to fuel global warming concerns.
Senator Joyce said Mr Garrett's entry into the debate demonstrated how it was being hijacked by misinformation.
He is a bloody liar. Lying is common in lefty political circles - Remember the H Fee story ?
It is arguably the worst muttonbird season in 45 years.
It affects many of our larger whanau.
It is a significant environmental event. Not unprecedented but significant.
Tuesday, 28 April 2009
Last month innocent little President Felipe Calderon of Mexico led a full state visit to Britain. He happily shook hands with Jonah (Gordon Brown), he dined with Jonah, he spent time with Jonah unknowing of the fearsome risks. Inevitably within a month the curse hit Mexico hard. Plague has come in the form of Swine Flu, taking the lives of over a hundred Mexicans so far. The prolonged proximity to the Presbyterian pestilence has brought double tragedy for Calderon’s people. Already reeling from the swinish plague, Mexico has suffered an earthquake of magnitude 5.6 on the Richter scale.
Well spotted Guido , Well spotted.
OK, he is losing as bit of hair and he looks like he is part ginga but he's easy on the eye and the latest revelations by Whale and Kiwiblog show that he is going to be perched on the most right hanging branch of the Labour Party tree. He likes guns and shooting, likes private armies, has been overseas. He was the Heralds man of the year in 1992. He speaks well, looks kinda cute - for an almost ginga.
What a huge contrast to the androgynous Ms Clark.
All the wee red missys will be fizzing at the bung. He will be a shoo in for the Mt Albert nomination.
Kiwiblog also has some background on Mr Shearer - the man in favour of privatising the Defence Force.
Excellent Stuff from Phil Goff - he is putting up a bloke who will shift the Labour Party to the right.
This does not look like an inspired decision.
NZX has bought the paper stable of rural publisher CountryWide.
We find it a strange investment in troubled times.
Mr Weldon says the deal is important as the primary sector underpins the New Zealand economy and the team at Country-Wide deeply understands its farmer readership.
“Farming is the biggest single industry in New Zealand, and farmers are innovative businesspeople who rely on timely and robust data and information to make sound decisions.”
The publisher produces 78 publications a year under seven mastheads and had a turnover of more than $7 million in 2008.
We are one of the bloggers who is testing out Powershop. So far all good and we got $50 bucks of free power this month as well.
So we can buy another nice bottle of wine to put in the cellar! We like that.
Head over to here and sign up - they do all the work for you and as far as we can see it means you will save on your powerbill.
Monday, 27 April 2009
The upfront boss of underwear company Ultimo,Michelle Mone has labelled the 50 percent tax rate put up by Gordon smeargate Brown, for those earning over $150,000 pounds - a disgrace.
We bought a Blackberry last April - we love it. Its on a 24 month plan. All good. Not so, it seems buried in the last few paras of Chris Kealls revelation in the NBR that Vodophones I-phones will run on Telecoms wizzy XT 3G network, is this nasty little insight about our favourite phone.
The telco has yet to say if any BlackBerries will feature in its XT line-up, for example (Telecom currently does currently have a “worldmode” BlackBerry 8830 aimed at business travellers - many of whom may be surprised that their RIM device won’t run on the new XT network.
And because the BlackBerry handset relies on a proprietary BlackBerry server, it’s far less of a candidate for network hopping.
Well yes we are bloody surprised - we would not have entered into a 24month contract if we had realised that the Blackberry face dont fit with the XT network.
We want answers and quick bloody smart.
We were delighted to find that the old Dorothys Pastiserre is going to be the new Expressaholic.
Wont have far to get a caffiene injection!
We particularly like this bit.
In terms of his own social commentary, O’Rourke said the economic crisis was proving to be a fabulous time. “I’ve been having a ball with the Obama administration,” he said cheerfully, “although in fairness to Obama, any new administration is by its nature terribly awkward. But if one happens to be in ideological opposition to an administration, then one is going to have a field day.”
But Obama had already proved to be “a smarter man” than many of his predecessors, left or right, including the one who recently vacated 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
“Bush had some people around him who one wouldn’t care to have to dinner, but then again, so does Obama. But one thing I would add here in Obama’s favour is that it is the responsibility of the leader of a democratic nation to speak to the people by whom he was hired and to whom he is responsible. You have to explain yourself. Obama does seem perfectly willing to do that, but Bush was perfectly unwilling to do that.”
It is well worth a read.
We are off to Auckland later this week to hear him in person. Can't wait.
Willie de Cleene from GoNZo..
He takes a good look at the Law Commissions nanny state ideas around alcohol
And why we owe more than our freedom to the soldiers of the First World War.
Raise your glasses everyone.
Sunday, 26 April 2009
UPDATE: While thats what was reported last night the kids have tested positive for Influenza A and Health officials say they consider it likely that they have Swine Flu.
The Sandwich - no Cactus -
not this sandwich...
This Sandwich From the lord of the bloggers Guido
Guido talks about how the UK PM's pr people are struggling underfire at the moment in the wake of the Damien Mc Bride Smeargate Scandal
The ‘News Sandwich’
One staffer says a colleague developed a technique called a “news sandwich” – first telling the prime minister about a recent piece of good coverage before delivering bad news, and then moving quickly to tell him about something good coming soon.
We noticed the NBR having fun with the fact that Hanover Finance King pin Eric Watson had a very fancy fiftieth birthday party recently. The Herald has followed up with some expected outrage from investors still waiting for their dosh.
We just want to ask one question of the former Mr NickyWatson,------>
<-----with all your money why didn't you get your teeth fixed you bucked tooth git!
Matt McCarten appreciates good work and this week in his column he focuses on what he sees as bloggers having some considerable influence in Labours decision over who to stand in the Mt Albert by election. He reckons Goff goofed. We reckon he really goofed, cos Shearer wont cut the mustard as he is hopeless on the hustings . Hooton reckons that Goffs political life depends on Mt Albert staying Labour.
We of course had nothing to do with any blog campaign
Kiwiblog did it - and Whale oil - not us...
Poneke got it right ... it was really David.
Yip, it was all over the Wairarapa Times Age yesterday - only in the hardy copy.
Ron Mark has plenty of political nous but we lost a bit of respect for him when he continued to back Winston to the last.
If he has signalled his intention to seek the Carterton Mayoralty this early it does mean one thing - NZ First is dead and buried.
Saturday, 25 April 2009
We have it on good authority, that the very dishy and well connected Mark Weldon - he who runs NZX, is seriously considering a tilt at the big windmill that is the Auckland Super City as its new CEO. This is very smart on a number of fronts. He is a business boy and the city needs to be run like a business. Weldon obviously has some serious currency with John Key. Key put him in charge of the Job summit and yaks to him all the time. Banksy is an old face and Weldon is a new one. We need new faces.
The power of the Key , Weldon team ( remember that Auckland is the biggest business next to Fonterra) could be awesome.
Sort of like the business equivalent of Batman and Robin.
We like it very very much.
Today we saw the " Fee " fly the FE.2b pusher bi plane replica which was built in secret from scratch. Its called a pusher because the prop is behind the pilot.
It is an awesome aircraft with the slimmest of struts connecting the fuselage with the rudder. The gun turret is upfront in what must have been one of the exposed places to be in air combat. It was a fantastic show. Lots to see. There is also a good story here about the plane in the Wairarapa Times Age
The Australian takes a look a the differences here
We particularly like this bit - Key makes it clear that the government cant provide all the solutions.
New Zealand benefited from "huge reforms, leaving it as a small, open, flexible economy, driven by Roger Douglas" -- the Labour finance minister in the late 1980s, recently returned to parliament as an ACT Party MP -- "but I am not claiming to be another Roger Douglas".
He said: "We just don't need that level of reforms, because the economy is quite open. But we can free up the process" of reform, which had stagnated. This will include a greater involvement by the private sector, as in a jobs summit Key held recently.
He is reintroducing greater flexibility to the labour markets, he said -- for instance, through a proposal for a 90-day probationary period for new employees.
"And we're not afraid to use the private sector in the provision of health and education services. The success of the nation doesn't rise or fall on the efforts of government alone. The strength of our country is that of our 4.3million people."
Anthem for Doomed Youth ~Wilfred Owen 1893-1918
What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
-Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,-
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.
What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls' brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.
For us, today is not about the glory of war - there is none. It is about paying tribute to men who, in years gone by, because of the decisions made by others, left our shores to fight for freedom.
We go to ANZAC ceremonies to remember those men and remind ourselves that it is our responsibility as individuals and as a nation to find solutions to conflicts rather than send our youngest and freshest faces to fight for us on foreign soil.
Friday, 24 April 2009
Hon Rodney Hide - Minister of Local Government; Minister for Regulatory Reform; Associate Minister of Commerce.
Friday, April 24 2009
Please be advised that Suzanne Pollard has been appointed to the role of Ministerial Press Secretary for the Hon Rodney Hide effective immediately.
As of today, please direct all media calls and inquiries to Suzanne Pollard rather than contacting the Minister directly.
Something very odd happened to our snapper card about a week ago. We knew at the time that we weren't the only ones - The Snapper people were very forthcoming on that one - And we cant fault their quick sort out. But today we read in the Dominion about a woman who was charged $97 for a bus fare and we wonder if the problems are a bit bigger than the ones we suffered.
We thought we had about $40 bucks on our card and then we got on the bus and it said low funds. So we went to a nearby dairy and loaded up another $50.
Then we got on the bus and still insufficient funds. The lovely bus driver said that it was common for Snapper to take 24 hours to load the balance. Anyway we didn't use the bus for a few days and then we got a call from Snapper. There had been a glitch, and my card would need replacing and they would give me a $10 credit as well for the inconvenience. We duly did but we had a real problem trying to load the card details on the web site. Anyway the Snapper people sorted that out as well.
Only thing is some of our IT mates reckon it sounds like Snapper was hacked.
This morning about 8 people seems to be very surprised to hear the bus machine tell them that they had a low balance - that's the same message we got. So we reckon that Snappers woes aren't over yet....
So why was that we here at Roarprawn wondered?
BB asked a mate and an ex soldier - the Chilli Prawn, to shed some light on the issue.
We did not need as many as we purchased. The vision for the Army that gave us that number was contentious and predicated on the fact that we needed to become a mobile Army (which we were not) if our traditional friends would ever want to let us play with them again. The problem is that simply buying enough complicated trucks ( that essentially what they are) does not make that vision a reality, it requires a monumental shift in doctrine, training, structure etc .
Meanwhile, post 9/11 the game changed and all our friends went from being involved in big, mobile Army type operations (think the first Gulf war, where everybody swept across the vast open desert in tanks and LAVs) to being involved in places like Afghan on operations of a very different type and scale where big mobile Armies typically don’t add a lot of value because you are not fighting against a big enemy in fixed positions that can be overwhelmed by mass, you need a big Army but the hardware that goes with it does not necessarily add a lot of value.
There is a paradigm in military planning that says military planners are always fighting the last war – it means that they look at what we should have done better in the last war, get themselves ready to that standard then get caught short by the completely different needs of the next war – such is the case of panning to be able to be a big mobile Army and then serving operationally Timor, Solomons, Sinai, Afghanistan etc.
The stupidity of the premise that we could become a mobile Army was that the cash needed to realise the Army vision would have gutted the air force and navy, no surprise that in the last defence review (and Mapp is right again – we do need another one) a lot of senior retired Army officers said that the Skyhawks should be scrapped (That’s a little known fact…) because we would never use them operationally and the cost to maintain and operate a fighter squadron meant that all other purchasing needs of the Army, Navy and Air Force were being impeded because we were kidding ourselves as a nation that we needed fast jets.
The Skyhawks were a political weapon in that we never used them other than to impress our allies by trotting them out on exercises….so when Helen binned them, she had to prove our commitment to international defence with something other than fast jets on exercises
Hence the entry, stage left, of soldiers deployed on real operations to prove our commitment to the UN (Middle East, Sudan), MFO (Sinai), Australia (Solomons and Timor), USA (Afghan), NATO (Kosovo, Bosnia and Afghan) etc etc.
So the long and short of it is that the LAVS are kit that were designed for the wars of the past not the peackeeping we tend to be involved in now and probably in the future. So expect some cheap LAVs to be offered up for sale post the Defence Review. Hopefully they will prove to be a little easier to sell than the Skyhawks.
Hooton's NBR column this week takes a look at Phil "Big Balls" Goff
Here are the good bits and some comment from BB
Phil Goff’s leadership of the Labour Party goes on the line in Mt Albert on 13 June. In the extremely unlikely event Labour actually lost an electorate it has held since the 1930s, Mr Goff’s leadership would be over, his party would descend into turmoil and despair, and National would be guaranteed what is already a near-certain second term.
Even worse for Labour would be winning by only a couple of thousand votes. Mr Goff would survive temporarily but there would be no hiding his lack of connection with Labour’s base. Its new generation of MPs would surely begin a destabilisation campaign. No one knows this better than Mr Goff.
We agree, the knives are already out for Goff as we have previously reported after some of the younger party members realised the implications of Judith Tizard coming back into parliament on the the back of list PMP Phil Twyford winning Mt Albert.
Hooton says it was to Goffs credit that he called in UMR Research UMR is Australia and New Zealand’s top corporate-reputation and issues-management research firm and has long held both the Labor and Labour accounts.
The results of the UMR study are secret but it has been reported it explored the so-called “Tizard Bomb”, after Labour had been spooked by a mischievous campaign by right-wing bloggers whaleoil.co.nz and NBR online columnist David Farrar.
The results must have been bad as he got Twyford to agree not to stand and made sure no other Labour hopeful put their name forward either.
Instead, Goff got his old mate David Shearer, back from Iraq. Mr Shearer stood in Whangarei in 2002, although he didnt wittle down National’s Phil Heatley’s small 1934 majority, despite the massive swing to Labour.
Having taken charge, Mr Goff can probably sleep more peacefully between tonight and 13 June but he alone will now be held accountable for the result.
Hell this is where we disagree with Hooton - this guy Shearer may look flashy on paper and he aint bad looking but hes not much chop on the hustings.
Goff has apparently got lefty PR spinner Jenny Michie, on the job- but judging by Shearers lack lustre performance in the past - its gonna be a farrking big job for Labour to keep Mt Albert red.Unlike Hooton we reckon Goff wont sleep a wink between now and the 13 of June.
We got to work this morning to find 6 bottles of wonderful Wycroft Forbury Pinot Noir from Bon Vivant and vintner Lawrie Bryant. Now we picked about 8 boxes of grapes in about 2 hours so we are confident that this reward means we are considered to be a very high value harvester!
We will take a couple of bottles with us to Padthaway South Australia in July - the home of some good big reds, to share with family there.
We enjoy watching them savour the subtly and elegance of NZ Pinot Noirs.
Thank you, my dear boy, thank you!
Readers will be well aware that Roarprawn, and epicurean assistants, cover the food and liquor industries with a diligence which borders of fanaticism!
So it is probably no wonder that we stumbled on this revelation.
It appears that after the highly-publicised demise of the Temperance, quick sale of The Establishment, and the pathetic existence of the Loaded Hog with its skeleton staff and in serious need of some spit and polish, the Wellington empire of the once-mighty Dominion Breweries is staggering.
Apparently management is closely monitoring some 30 outlets. What happens in case of a disaster? Thirty pubs on the market?
Impossible, you may say........ yet thats what happened to the mighty Thwaites, Griffith empire a decade ago.
Readers can be assured your team is closely monitoring events!
Readers will be well aware that Roarprawn's BustedBlonde, and her epicurean assistants, cover the food and liquor industries with a diligence which borders on fanaticism!
So it is probably no wonder that we stumbled on this revelation.
It appears that after the highly-publicised demise of the Temperance, quick sale of The Establishment, and the pathetic existence of the swill house Loaded Hog with its skeleton staff and in serious need of a decent swipe and wipe, the Wellington empire of the once-mighty Dominion Breweries is staggering.
Apparently management is closely monitoring some 30 outlets. What happens in case of a disaster? Thirty pubs on the market?
Impossible, you may say........ yet remember what happened a decade ago to the mighty Thwaites, Griffith empire.
Will history repeat?
Readers can be assured your team is still closely monitoring!