Saturday 31 January 2009


We are with No Minister on this one. The NZ Herald has done a follow up piece on the Bill Liu Scandal Shane Jones passport scandal

We particularly like this bit from Cunliffe - it shows no loyalty to Jones. So, as we have predicted Jones is not going to look good once this investigation is over and its one of the reasons that he was not higher up the food chain when Goff chose his shadow front bench.

Mr Cunliffe would not discuss the case when approached by the Herald before the election but later, under the Official Information Act, the Department of Labour released to the Herald the following passage from Mr Cunliffe's decision: "I have decided that the most appropriate route for this case at this time is for it to continue to be assessed by BSG [Border Security Group - includes fraud and compliance units] as a potential prosecution file. I do not discount the possibility of reconsidering it in the future."

A source close to Mr Cunliffe told the Herald that the minister had erred on the side of natural justice for Mr Liu but was "somewhat surprised" when Mr Jones (delegating for the Internal Affairs minister of the time, Rick Barker), granted Mr Liu citizenship without first discussing it with Mr Cunliffe.

We first read Wisharts piece in Investigate Magazine we I an Wishart kindly let us have a preview and we could see then the story had legs. And we predicted it would be the story that still had to play out this year

And the Herald should have linked to Wisharts story. Fairs fair chaps.



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Friday 30 January 2009


We have had a few whinges about the vege porn video - We hate Peta - ( we think it should stand for people eating tasty animals).

But this has to be the best dead pig BBQ recipe ever ( hat tip beer boy NM)

Guaranteed to make your arteries sigh in Ecstasy.

and this from Home Paddock - as the Aussies look to real food solutions to the recession.


We are wondering if there is history between cactus and Weldon after the Hong Kong Hangi Pants takes yet another wack at Keys choice to lead the job summit.

However, what she has makes for very interesting reading.


Now more that ever we need Maori to work together.

Archie has always been one of our favourite Maori leaders, he is a quiet but steely man and very gracious.
It ia times like these we need leadership..

Press Release by Te Ohu Kaimoana - The Maori Fisheries Trust at 10:02 am, 30 Jan 2009

Te Ohu Kaimoana has now transferred more than $440 million worth of Fisheries Settlement assets to iwi - a resource that could play a key role in helping Maori come through the current global economic crisis, the organisation's Chairman Archie Taiaroa told Maori leaders today.

Speaking at Te Ohu Kaimoana's annual meeting which was opened by Fisheries Minister Phil Heatley in Wellington, Mr Taiaroa, said wise use of the Settlement resources by iwi, particularly in the regions, can help keep Maori employed.

"We must look at ways of assisting our people through these tough times - and by doing so look after our country - through putting our economic resources back into the regions to allow our people to manage their own economic base.

"Maori and iwi are significant players in fisheries, and we should all be looking at how we can utilise Settlement resources to support our people at this difficult time," Mr Taiaroa said.

He told delegates that 48 of the nation's 57 iwi now had Mandated Iwi Organisations (MIOs) to which assets could be allocated and, crucially, 25 iwi now had full or partial coastline agreements.

Under the Maori Fisheries Act, the Fisheries Settlement is allocated to MIOs on the basis of an iwi's size and the agreed length of its coastline.

"Te Ohu Kaimoana is putting a tremendous amount of work into assisting neighbouring iwi reach coastline agreements, and a lot has been achieved in the last year," Mr Taiaroa told delegates, including Fisheries Minister Phil Heatley.

Mr Taiaroa said Taranaki had been a particular success story with the first big group of six adjoining MIOs - Ngati Mutunga, Te Atiawa, Taranaki, Nga Ruahine, Ngati Ruanui and Nga Rauru - having "come to the very wise conclusion that co-operation was in their mutual best interests".

He said after many years, Ngati Kahungunu and Rangitane on the North Island's east coast have come to agreement, and Ngapuhi have settled all their coastline through a number of agreements with other iwi.

"I can't emphasise enough that our future success is all about how we co-operate as iwi," he said.

Thursday 29 January 2009


sorry but we are militant carnivores and shaggin veges aint our thing.

Peta are weird and this proves it


We were a bit sceptical if the Maori hui yesterday would help chart a course through the choppy economic seas we are sailing on. But it seems that the big boys thought big. They are, as a result of Treaty settlements sitting on some big piles of dosh. They have, after a few years in the fishing game, working out that consolidation of assets leads to better returns.
So they are saying that instead of being the bum boys driving the dozers - they want to be financing the roads in partnership with the government. Infrastructure is a good choice - but we would also like to see some thinking from some of the younger ones about investing some of that money in JV's in broadband and other IT projects. There are more and more Maori who are in the IT industry and we are surprised that that has not emerged from the summit as a key way for Maori to work in partnership to oil the wheels of the economy.

bad airlines


Why? He has the balls, things are bad and everyone else around the world in his position has been ballsy.

Wednesday 28 January 2009


BB's kitchen was declared the best place to eat in Welly tonight. The diners where a wee bit biased - The kids were here. We had whitebait fritters, pan fried brill fillets, our amazing new potatoes, the fantastic zucchini salad, and a green salad of our lettuces and herbs.Followed by summer berries tossed with meringues and honey laced sour cream dribbled all over.
Brill is one of my favourite fish, it looks like a flounder that has run into the back of a whale and has a very light pinkish flesh- and we bought it on the bone from Moore Wilsons and filleted it .
Its was all moisty and melty - just how good fish should be.


We had a bet that there would be some Maori who turned up at the hui without having an invite. We have heard there was at least one.
Someone with links to fish and the Chathams. Too Too much, we say. Just rude really and apparently they wouldn't shut up. We can remember them from way back and they had bugger all to contribute then.

And we hear that the Ministry of Fisheries is restructuring as well. Excellent. We look forward to be efficiencies in the future.


First we had new Fisheries Minister Phil Heatley raising the allowable by catch levels of Sealions for the NZ squid industry - We thought that was great - then came the news that pup numbers had dropped off this year.

So because they were treated like adults the seafood industry reacted like adults and this is the result

27 January 2009 - Fisheries Minister Phil Heatley and Ministry of Fisheries Chief Executive Wayne McNee have today congratulated the squid fishing industry on their responsible approach to today's announcement by the Department of Conservation of a 30% fall in the number of sea lion pups.
The Deepwater Group (representing the majority of squid quota owners) has announced the squid fishing industry will respond to this decline by voluntarily reducing fishing activity in the Auckland Islands squid fishery as an interim measure for the 2009 fishing season. This measure effectively reduces the sea lion fishing related mortality limit from 113 to 95 sea lions.
"When I became aware of this decline in sea lion pup numbers I requested that the squid fishing industry consider voluntarily reducing the sea lion fishing related mortality limit," said Mr Heatley.
"I am very pleased the squid fishing industry has responded by taking a responsible and cautious approach.
"Their willingness to work with me and the Ministry of Fisheries to minimise the risk to sea lions is most gratifying," he said.
Mr McNee said with the Auckland Islands squid fishery due to open this weekend a voluntary reduction was the most effective way to respond quickly and responsibly to the new information.
The Department of Conservation says the latest research on sea lion populations in the sub-Antarctic Auckland Islands provisionally shows a 30% fall in the number of sea lion pups and a reduction in the number of female sea lions coming ashore.
It is not known what is causing this decline but DOC scientists on the Auckland Islands are carrying out further research.
"While we are confident this decline is not being caused by fishing, we need to take these figures into account and make sure that the impact of fishing is particularly well managed" said Mr McNee.

Good stuff, we say - a win for everyone.

Word has it that the industry is pretty happy with their Minister so far - and a few of the industry wags have suggested that his press secretary is a "good un." It is expected that his extensive knowledge of wine will be of benefit at future seafood dinners.

And still on matters seafood.

The industry is doing a bit of rationalisation - with about 26 industry groups it was all getting a bit hard for SEAFIC to manage. The inshore boys met today to discuss ways of doing things better. Well done.


This is not tidy. We hope that there is documentation showing clearly that Fonterra would not tolerate any level of Melamine in Milk.

If not this will drag on and will continue to damage the milk giant as it plays out.

Tuesday 27 January 2009


So a bunch of researchers talks to a heap of drinkers and non drinkers and the drinkers are happier with their sexual performance? What a load of saggy bollocks.

They need to ask the partners of the pissed and unpissed to get a true indication and seriously boys - pissed does not equal better performance ever - at all.


Whale oil thinks he has the goss on Winston Peters
and the fact that he doesn't seem to be keen to return his Ford Territory govt supplied vehicle.

We have it on good authority that he is going to employ it to do some charity work. He is going to use it to deliver meals on wheels to all the senior citizens who voted for him. Isn't that lovely! It is so nice to know that he is finally going to give something back to all those old people who voted for him.

Please pass this message on to all the old folks you know who voted for him.


As much as bloody old curmudgeon Alf Grumble MP , the member for Ekatahuna ( his nickname is "wee willy" by the way) would have you believe, we are not a doom spewing dame like Cassandra

He has his cravat in a knot over our concerns about the economy.

Reckons we are too negative. But does appreciate our breasts. He is not alone in appreciating our assets. He calls BB a lass but well, as we have lost all our wisdom teeth and a back bicuspid chewing on one too many birdy heads, it is fair to say we are fortyish and fab, buxom and bodacious, wrinkly and reckless but alas a lass no more.

So "wee Willy" Grumbleguts - here is our list of things to be pleased about.

  • We are fit and well endowed.
  • Georgina te HeuHeu has employed some thinking women's crumpet as her advisor - and he is smart as well.
  • We have some lovely new clients.


We know just the team to sort out this wee problem with marauding caterpillars in Liberia.

The team can be assembled within a week -

Would be a great aid project.

Monday 26 January 2009


Agridata has a ncie round up of the changes in rural circumstances.

It does not make for good reading.


We think that Meurant has had some sort of religious experience. Today he feels qualified to take a poke at the police over the shooting of a bystander in the wake of the pursuit of of a gunman in Auckland. We hope they poke back. The accidental shooting of innnocent bystander, Halatau Naitoko, is probably the worse thing that could happen to any policeman. The situation is still confused and the inquiry will take some time to complete. Meurant may know a lot about the law but its debatable if he understands the notion of justice and he like the rest of the country should stand aside and let due process take its course.
It seems nothing has changed really. He is still a big noting tosser.

Saturday 24 January 2009


Well it appears the ex Minister of Maori Affairs likes pork as well as oysters and chardonnay.

And apparently the place was none too tidy either but then again Parekura has never been a stickler for cleanliness and tidiness - the following a jibe from Tau Henare during the reading of the Maori Purposes Bill in Dec 2007

Hon TAU HENARE: Oh—market rents! That Minister can talk about market rents. He was one of the slum landlords down on the East Coast. He was trying to rent out his house to his whānau, and I would not have rented out a house that looked like that to a dog. But the Minister did, and we all know that. We all know he is a bit of a landlord down on the East Coast.

Hat tip Whale oil

Friday 23 January 2009


Well chop my tree down and call it firewood. Kiwiblog has a great post on the command and control of Forestry by MAF-

This is silly beyond silly. Its the work of short sighted imbeciles. Its time David Carter gave some direction to the forestry unit in MAF. It needs some serious pruning.


Believe it or not...

A welsh mother has narrowly escaped jail
for child abuse after she was caught teaching her 3 yr old to smoke.

We dont like tobacco, we want to see tobacco displays banned - its a childrens health issue - full stop.


We are happy to lead by example. Times are tough - its time to get tough so we are more than happy for all Public servants to miss out on a pay rise this year. And amongst the Roarprawn ranks is more than one public servant. So good on Key for raising the thorny issue. That's what we like to see - balls. And we heard Goff wittering on RNZ this morning about the fact that Key should legislate to stop pay rises among the top echelons of the public service and MP's. That's the difference between National and Labour - National charts the direction and expects people to act like responsible grown ups. Labour wants to be in charge and doesn't trust people to be grown up - the Nanny state.

Thursday 22 January 2009


So where do ex Ministers go when they are in opposition?

They spend 3 hours at Dockside dining on Nelson oysters and drinking chardonnay with their very attractive ex secretary - kia ora Parekura kia ora ...


Crazy, someone does shoot horses.

Apparently because someone rode away on a cloud of white dust.

See C9 of todays Dom - its public.

Update - the Dom serves up the Crazyhorse story

A very meaty issue.

Hat Tip to PB

the baby prawn.

Wednesday 21 January 2009


First Cactus gives Bill English a broadside, then Whale oil takes exception to Fran O'Sullivan's column where Bill dribbles on a bit. Bill and John are shaping up to be the ying and yang of National. Is that a bad thing? We think not. It is clear from Fran' s column that Key leads and English then sets about giving his ideas legs. That's got to be good. So unlike Cactus and Whale we are pleased that Key is okay with English's gentle chiding about his creativity. Every ideas man, every visionary needs a solid bugger in the engine room to do his bidding and that's where English shines.For once we see a team that is so solid that they can gently take the piss out of each other in public. That is very cool.


We listened to your words Barry and it was a speech that should ignite the passions of your people and given them hope and heart. You told them the road would be hard and there was much to do - you held out the olive branch to the nations who were waiting for a sign that the old regime was gone.

Then you said the the words that made all the other words turn to dust and blow away on the chill wind.
"know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more."

You said you were ready to lead once more. No you are not Barry. You country is in ruins, Your people are standing on the edge of a social financial and economic precipice and your sights should have been on rebuilding you country and showing the rest of the world that you were ready to stand up and help lead the world. Instead you want to lead the world.
We don't want you to lead the world until you can show you can lead your own country.

We do not respect you when you show your arrogance. We will not follow you until you show us what you are capable of. We do not need for your to patronise us or assume that you have a divine right to lead the world.

Pick up your nation, dust them off and get them on the path to prosperity but do not ever tell us that you are ready to be our leader. We may come to you and ask you to help unite the world when we see what you can do.

So go Barry, go to your people - do your best to fix the mess your good country is in and maybe in a while we will come knocking at your door.

Tuesday 20 January 2009


  • Which top journo who tried PR and was good at it, decided after a particularly amoral decision by his employers to return to the side of the angels?
All we will say is power to the people.

  • Which Ex MP is up on fraud charges?
  • Is it true that Paula Bennett has been offered a fight for life contract?
  • Who else wants to say "no we f****kn wont" every time they hear Barry Obama say "Yes we can?"

Watch that space - its all about who was here first, who dares and who wins.


We bet these guys are so tough that if they came to NZ they would vote National

We need immigrants with the right stuff


And some more from the Airshow - great display from the Airforce - but shit its a worry when all the airforce has is vintage planes :-(


Is anyone else out there just a little concerned about the god like status that Obama has in the US?
Now we applauded the US for appointing an African - American to the Presidency. It probably would have been more historic it has been a native American but thats bye the bye. But the hype the rhetoric and the adulation is leaving us more than a little fearful. Not PC has a good analysis of the strong left wing bias that Barry has. It makes for disturbing reading.
The trade implications for NZ are also worrrying.

I hope for the sake of the US and the rest of the world that Barry delivers on the hopes dreams and the needs of his people. Sadly we think he will go down as the worst President in living memory.

Interestingly we just tried to search the net for recent stories that criticise Obama. The few that are there are months old. Is there a tool that can purge the net of negative stories ? Some bloggers are convinced the Chinese used a purging tool to ensure the world did not know the extent of the San Lu scandal. Could the US be doing the same?


It is now very obvious that National has the mettle to take us through the tough times - first we have the PM John Key slip and break his arm and then go on the shake the hands of a few dozen burly rugby players who are not known for their pussy grips and he doesnt grizzle or whinge.

Then the Herald reports that Paula Bennett, the proud westie, goes into " mum mode " and breaks up a big cat fight among some girls outside a shopping centre - a fight that was so bad shop keepers had to close their doors to protect their customers.

So we have a PM who shows he is a tough bloke and a Minister who shows she ain't a bad bloke for a sheila. Noice....

Monday 19 January 2009


Here is a selection of pics from the dog fights that featured at the Wings over the Wairarapa yesterday. Figures in the media today indicated that there were about 45,000 people. I did a bit of work for Tom Williams - the organiser a few years back. He is one of those few tireless, men who not just has good ideas , he works to make them happen. He is worthy of a good current affairs piece on his life - which is interesting in itself and his achievements and his down to earth demeanor.

And when we got home we discovered that we had taken 1079 pics. We also paid $135 for gold pass tickets which got us into the best area to take pics. Lunch was pretty good too.

Sunday 18 January 2009


The WOW was a wonderful event - its was masterfully choreographed and the skill and daring of the pilots was amazing.

More pics later
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Saturday 17 January 2009

Zucchini salad

Well our garden has been taken over by the triffid aka the zucchini. So what to do with them?
Well here is our favourite recipe to date

Ribbon cut the zucchini - as many as you want
sprinkle over lemon juice.
then slurp on some good olive oil
then add garlic and herbs to taste ( our garlic isnt ready so we cheated by using masterfoods garlic and herb seasoning, )
Then add chopped parsely, tomatoes, spring onions. and toss thru.

and salt and pepper to taste but go easy on the salt if you used the cheats garlic and herb salt.

this is a very wet juicy salad, the zucchini leach their juice and its bloody delicious!

If you are left with any juice - chuck it over the nearest lettuce..


We got a new toy today - its shiny and smells new. And it makes noise and does stuff. Its very very cool. BB has already polished it once. Its purchase was also a testament to the service you get in the provinces. We bought it from the John Deere dealer on the way into Masterton. We had been into a couple of places but no -one in the stores seemed to have the authority to "talk turkey" and do a good cash deal. So in we wander to the John Deere dealer and there was a lovely aussie chick and a young fella. They were very good but knew bugger all and were honest about it . But in a flash they rang the salesman, (something the people in the other two dealerships didn't do) and we got all the info we needed including the price which was very good. He also asked if it was okay if he delivered it later in the afternoon because he was going to the Air Show. Well hell we were impressed. The deal was done and about 4.30 it was delivered. He came out with some of his relatives from Holland who were having a ball here.
Anyway, we have generally found shopping in Masterton to be a good experience, people will normally go the extra mile and they are always friendly. It's that sort of warmth that will probably see us make our home here one day in the not too distant future.

Friday 16 January 2009


We lilke it when people talk back and Richard MacLean the councils comms czar has been quick to stamp out any impression that the council needs to name and shame restaurants.
Thanks Richard.

Greetings Roarprawn
At Wellington City Council we've generally found the idea of a 'name and shame' list or similar to be largely pointless. Our preferred approach is to inspect restaurants and other food premises regularly - and really get on the case of places that aren't shaping up. This means lots of visits. Usually the recalcitrant owners get the message about hygiene etc very quickly and problems go away.
On the rare occasions that we prosecute, the resulting media publicity almost always proves fatal to the business - they see their customers disappear overnight and they are closed within weeks. Just the threat of prosecution focuses the attention of restaurant owners very, very quickly.
Richard MacLean - WCC Communications


OOh yuck - Perth does a name and shame on some restaurants - what a bloody good idea. Now we reckon that most of Welly's restaurants are up to scratch and we always check their ratings. But we like the idea of listing the ones who have been prosecuted. We have in the past had a range of food poisonings so anything that can prevent that is a winner in our book.


We are on holiday today - Soon to jump on the midday train for the Wairarapa - and the Aussie Rock has bought us flash tickets to the Wings over Wairarapa . shame about the spitfire but we are sure Tom Williams and the crew will have some good stuff to keep avaition buffs like us entertained.

We are also delighted to see that there will be Stewart Island oysters available soon Well done!

And here's some fo the best on the blogs today as well.

Alf - the member from Ekatahuna takes a swipe at us but does it in style - we love that.

Whale Oil has one of the funniest posts on condoms - watch opening it at the office.

and MacDoctor is required reading - funny , irreverant and smart, and this morning he will make you think twice about blaming docs for misdiagnoses.


Like all Wellingtonians, BB keeps a keen eye out for Blanket Man. Last we heard the judge said he could get out of jail for Christmas if he wore undies.
We can report that he was sun bathing on the Sports Cafe corner of Courtney Place yesterday soaking up the rays.
Without doubt we can assure the judge that the human eyesore has invested in some gruts. Tight fitting black undies - and nothing. What a relief! However the Judge should have made him invest in a new blanky and some deodorant - you can smell the bugger a block away.

Today's Dominion Post recorded that the flash Dockside restaurant was purchased by tyreman Tony. (Just a week behind Roarprawn.)
Also reported that former All Black manager, Mike Banks, will be the front man.
By the way, Tyreman Tony payed a cool $1.9 million.


Key is saying that the government focus is going to be on SME's - that's good for us because we are a SME. So cutting the red tape, and tax relief will help and the type of initiatives that the Wellington Chamber have initiated make bloody good sense too. Cactus, the icey eyed bint, has some reservations about Mr Weldon - we like to see alternative views and she has raised some valid issues - take a look here. We however, remain Weldon supporters. We would also like to see Alex Sundakov in the mix - if he isn't already, and anyone who has taken a business from 0 - $10 million plus in 5 years - There are more of them than you think and no property developers thank you. Then add in the boys from the Southland Building Society and South Canterbury Finance - they are prudent investment boys and know what a durable investment is. Chuck in Chris Lee as well - He knows what doesn't stack up. And of course Gareth Morgan. And check out what some of the boys in Maori Fisheries have been doing. - They have been wise stewards of a uber freezer full of fish.

There are heaps more - but we don't want to see the same old tired faces at the summit - we want successful new faces. And no sandals, batik skirts, dreadlocks and greenpeace tee shirts.

And the Mantra is a simple one - Governments don't create jobs Businesses create jobs - its the governments job to create the environment for businesses to create jobs. Simple.

We also want to be part of the task force that gives the public service a shake up - Public services are pissing themselves laughing at the government - you see in the time honoured tradition of public service they started to shift money, hide money, change the names of projects and whole departments, mid last year so that they could front up to the new boys and say savings - sure we will give you savings, when really Ministers will be presented with some manipulated accounts. So it will need an external review to ensure that there is no shilly shallying.

Thursday 15 January 2009


David Young has been a favourite reporter of ours for some time. We first met him when he was a press sec for ACT. He was very smart - rocket scientist smart. We noticed on Facebook the other day that he was talking about having left TVNZ as a reporter - anyway we have just been chatting and he is off to the Copenhagen Consensus - A global solutions think tank. Thats good and bad - good for David and bad for NZ - but hopefully only in the shortish term. As he plans to return. He is one to watch - we predict he will play a major role in the shaping of NZ in years to come. So good luck good man - make the world a better place and then come back home and help make our country the best place.


We are delighted that Key has chosen Weldon to chair the summit that's aimed at sorting shit. He's an ideas man and thats what we need.
We also did a bit of scan of the SOE lists of board members and boy are there some lightweights - even some bird who lists among her achievements- Aerial ribbon gymnastics to fill out her profile. We didn't know if we should laugh or cry and there are some bad balance sheets among the SOE's - we smell a clean out coming.
There is also another really good thing about the appointment of Mark Weldon. Both he and Key are easy on the eye. So it will be much easier hearing bad news from some thinking girls eye candy.


Invercargill it seems, is the latest theatre for the the Israel/Gaza conflict. As a political protest its a winner as the story is getting world wide coverage. Shit, there will be pilgrimages to Mustafa Tekinkaya 's shop Mevlana Cafe in Esk St soon. However, as an obvious immigrant to NZ , the Turkish Muslim should leave the battles of another land in that land. I thought that's why most came here - to get away from all the political shit. So Shame on him.


Heres a newish blog we like. Its fun and likes taking the piss. - Just as good blogs should.

Wednesday 14 January 2009


Key is supporting the Maori flag flying on the Auckland bridge. Good.


Fran O'Sullivan yet again gives a column that sets out succinctly what the big issues are for the Key govt.

Tomorrow is a day for some bold creative thinking and a clear indication that we have visionary leadership in Key. We like the phrase "rolling maul" Key has used to describe his Jobs Summit - it sounds bold, and ballsy and that's what we need. We need a plan and it needs to be clearly articulated to the public so using the rugby analogy will help it connect with the public.

Fran talks about some suggestions from Mark Weldon around provisional tax. Provisional tax is a bitch. It's a nightmare for small businesses with rollercoaster cash flows. Key should sort it and quick. We will be forever greatful and it will lessen the reliance on Gaviscon at certain times of the year.

We also want to see more accountability from the fat and lazy SOE's. No more using monopolistic units to fund risky commercial forays. Forays that often mean that SOE's bugger up commercial opportunities for companies that don't have access to "free money." It's time someone in the business press did an up close and personal analysis of the financial performance of the SOE's - some of balance sheets do not make for pretty reading.

And the boards should be stripped of the Labour lackeys and replaced with some more commercially minded successful and visionary businessmen and women, quick smart.

There is much the new Key team can do - We want to see some inspired ideas, we want to see courage and we want to see the bold leadership we voted for.

Kia Kaha John, Kia Kaha.

Tuesday 13 January 2009


We like monkfish. Today we had a lovely lunch of simple yet elegantly plated monkfish at Beaujolais with a hint of something exotic and heady we couldn't fathom. Yum. And the bar , as usual, was populated by unusual suspects. Good wine, Trinity Hill, Martinborough Chardonnay excellent food and great company = bliss.


Whose office is known as CHARLIE WILSONS WAR ROOM because the staff all share the same hair colour as the female lead in the movie?

If you pull the wrong tit why do you get a top job?

Who is running the book on if the Maori flag will fly on Auckland bridge on Waitangi Day?

What really flash boats cant be insured and why?

And who was the goofball who convinced DB to sink a fortune in the Temperance bar?


Well everyone round town is gasbagging about the perception that the government is on holiday at a critical time. What crap.
And its more than a little precious of Labour to get all pious about Key taking a break. They were always missing in action around Christmas New Year. In fact it was hard to get sense out of any Labour ministers office till the end of January, so the fact that Key has his boys fronting up this week definitely puts him ahead in the readiness stakes.

We were with a senior journalist the other day and she wasn't impressed about Key being ensconced in Hawaii. She wondered if his kids were missing their mates and their kiwi holidays and that his first Xmas should have been in NZ on holiday with the masses. Part of Keys appeal is that he is one of us who's made good and that he hasn't lost touch with who he really is but she reckoned buggering off to Hawaii for secluded Xmas set him apart. We think Clarks cold mountain expeditions at the height of summer set her apart from the rest of NZ as a odd fish.
But the biggest problem that the Nats have had over this issue is one of Perception. Labour used to ensure that it appeared busy over Xmas and it did it very very well. While McCully did a stirling job of fronting the main political issues all the other Ministers should have had announcements to make over the holiday period. That was the trick the Labour used. Low level announcements that became the breathless focus of the bored and often junior Xmas reporters on the xmas roster. Key should have also granted one really good in depth interview for Tv1 while on Holiday. Again its all about perception.

Now we have Key looking like he is reacting to the media over their perceptions of his lack of activity by announcing the meeting of his powerful economic team which we knew about weeks ago. A bit more pro active media activity is needed by the Nats to ensure that the government is not just working, as we know they are, but are Seen to be working.

But hell what do we know? ;-)

Monday 12 January 2009


Homepaddock has a good post on Fonterra and milk mountains - she is taking longer term and optimistic view of the situation - well worth a read here


Today the rugby prawn and I had a nice business lunch at St Johns Bar and Restaurant . Turbot is a special favourite fish of mine and I was delighted it was on the menu. It was the best fish I have had in ages. Settled on a heady garlic mash, and dressed with a lovely julienne carrot salad the fish was cooked to perfection. I will be going back for more. He was a bit more reticent about his Sirloin Steak - declaring it a tad too tough. We drank a lovely bottle of of Arcadia bubbles from Central Otago. Its light and girly - like Pol Roger without the citrusy zing and length.
As for food gossip - It is time one of the Wellington main stream media did a story on who owns what in the Wellington hospitality scene. We hear that while the Trinity Group remain one the main players in bar management , many of their previous bars are now owned by a big Aussie company.
And the word is that DB has so much money buried in the basement of the failed Temperance Bar complex that some of the company wags have suggested that it be turned into the Brewery giants offices. And everyone is watching anxiously to see who will close next. Times are pretty tough we are told.

And anyone walking down the west side of lower Willis St can't fail to notice that it has become a shopping ghetto. While the fashionistas dominate the east side, the West Side looks like it has been bombed. It was busy enough prior to Xmas but all with shops on short term, sell shit quick, leases. Now we counted at least 6 empty shops in a row. It is hoped the area will be developed.


We have been watching Fonterra with some interest since the San Lu scandal. Initially we thought they shouldbe given the benefit of the doubt over how they handled the initial crisis. Now we think that the whole issue was handled badly.

Now this appears in the Agridata blog so we are beginning to feel some unease.

And we wonder what is happening to shareholder confidence.

Manawatu/Rangitikei Fed Farmers VP Andrew Hoggard says Fonterra’s announcement it is considering raising $300 million won’t affect dairy farmers, but he is worried the co-operative is raising capital to pay the bills. Fonterra said in February it expects to offer senior retail bonds, with the ability to accept oversubscriptions. The co-operative said it intends to use any money raised for general business purposes, including working capital requirements.

Read more here

But it is this speculation in the final paragraph that is perhaps the most worrying.

Mr Hoggard said although concerned about the $300 million, there are other worries for dairy farmer shareholders. “We have heard that all Fonterra’s storage is full, meaning it is stockpiling product. That means it’s not selling.” He said these are worrying times for all farmers. “There will be serious belt tightening in the coming year as dairy farmers cope with the lower payout and have less money to use for any spending.

Sunday 11 January 2009


Much to our surprise one of the most popular and often searched stories is this one about Stephen Jennings 0f the Renaissance Group that we blogged about early in the formative days of Roarprawn. We are delighted to inform readers that he is coming to NZ in a couple of months to talk to the Business Round Table.We look forward to hearing what he has to say about the Global situation.

No a bad looking bugger either.

Saturday 10 January 2009


This beats all - we are donkey deep in Stephen Kings Just after Sunset collection of short stories but we reckon that this story in the SydneyDaily Telegraph leaves the plots and macabre scribblings of King for dead.
Firstly the bugger, Andre Thomas kills his family and cuts out their hearts. In jail he whips out his eye - but is deemed mentally fit to stand trial . So on death row - he whips out his remaining eye and EATS IT. The rest of Kings stories are going to feel tame now.

Thursday 8 January 2009

defending the indefensible

first clue


A trio of us went to Shed 5 today for lunch. We had a good table- good enough to watch some nubile topless boys jump off the lower wharf at Dockside and emerge - rippling muscles glistening. The guy candy was so good that we contemplated paying them to do it all again.

Anyway, back to the food. We had breads to start - nice rolls - marscapone laced with truffle oil, and good Olive oil and reduced balsamic. Excellent - 8/10

Next Snow crab on a wasabi pea puree - very very moist -maybe just a hint too much salt but that was balanced by a lovely Spy Valley Sav Blanc 2008. crisp - The crab entree at $26 was a treat.

Sadly the main of steamed terakihi was not up to scratch. It was terakihi with a gazpacho carpaccio jelly , sweet kumara cubes and a very light chilli dressing. It was way too firm. No spring, bordering on dry. We were hungry so we ate it but it was far from Shed 5 at its finest. At
$34 - we expect perfection.

We shared a cheese platter - strong and bold was the theme, so it was Gorgonzola picccante, Gorgonzola dolce, Italian provolone, and an Aussie Tarago triple brie- the heart stopper. They were sublime and we moved to a thicker, spicy Cental Otago Bannockburn Akarua Pinot Gris , a wine that is much more sophisticated that the early vintages.

The company was fantastic, the weather sublime. The bill was $434 for the three of us. We did drink a bit.

And on the way home past the Frank Kitts lagoon, I introduced the Aussie Rock to one of Wellington's best kept secrets. The dance of Tangaroa's purerehua ( butterflies). Large stingrays come in and swim right up to the edges of the lagoon and feed. On a still day people line the lagoon mesmerised. They are simply extraordinary to watch as they glide through the shallow waters. They should be marketed as a Wellington attraction.


Yip - coming soon - its a shocker. And we reckon itwill see the govt launch an inquiry into one Govt department which had foundered on the rocks of bad management. And they wont be able to defend their actions.

The doors on the closets that contain the skeletons from Labours reign are starting to bust open with the weight of decomposing corpses.

We like that.


We are off to lunch at Shed 5 today . It is hard to grasp that our world is going to be impacted by the growing global economic crisis when its sunny, most people you know still have jobs and you have money in the bank, but the story in the Herald today clearly shows the impact the recession is having on export earnings and the news is real bad. Its the biggest drop in 20 years. We reckoned it will be June before the first cold chill of the Tsunami really hits our fair shores. We hope that everyone is getting ready - it aint gonna be pretty.

Wednesday 7 January 2009


We have it on good authority that DB stepped in and dealt a death blow to what was arguably Wellingtons biggest Bar - the Temperance complex. this morning. It was viewed as an ambitious complex by Wellingtons hospitality industry. It's fit out was estimated to be around $3 mil. DB and the Wellington Rugby Union were significant investors. Everyone is asking what Wellington Rugby is up for after the bars and restaurants failed to make good. Sad really - it would have been good to see it take off but we understand that fit out, cost overruns and very high rents meant it was an intemperate investment from day one.

Bizarrely the goss round town is that Steve of Tony's Tire service (TTS)is the mystery buyer of Dockside.
Industry sources reckon he will be about 2- 3 mil out of pocket. What sort of changes will will see?
Since Justine,the goddess of good service left Dockside it hasnt been the same. It is hoped thart Steve,of TTS, who prides himself on service, will change the values of one of our favorite haunts.

ACC in the poop

We reckoned there was more to come with ACC and there is . Heads will roll by the end of February. The sad thing is all it will do is add to the expenses of the average family and business. Labour has left a few of these fiscal bombs for National to detonate.


Fran O'sullivan is one of our favourite columnists. shes not boring like Colin James and todays missive is one of her best. In many ways its a brave column. Fonterra is the white backbone of the economy and her critical analysis should be read with concern by all farmer shareholders. What we still want to know is how many babies have really died. Epidemiologists we have talked to reckon that there have been waaaay more deaths that the four reported. Ferriers lack of intel on what was happening around the guilty plea by the San Lu company chair made him look like a dick.

We also reckon that Fonterras handling of this issue will be used as a PR example of what not to do by all tutors of the dark arts.

update - this from Macdoctor

Your epidemiologist friends are certainly right. At one point China reported 158 babies were in acute kidney failure. Given that this is a serious condition needing a lot of specialised equipment, it is unlikely all of them survived.

A neonatologist friend reckoned that 20-30% would die within a month or two and about half of the survivors would die within the next 10 years from complications of chronic renal failure.

Yes. You did read that right. 30-40 babies are already dead. Another 50-60 will not see their teens.

Feel free to be sick. I know I will.


This is from Bob from the Bluff

Gordon Brown gets called a very bad name in one of the great editing bloopers.-


save the whalers!


This is very sad and very wrong. The law of the sea is simple - when someone is in trouble all who are near must go to their aid.

A Japanese sailor is missing after falling overboard during a whaling expedition in the Antarctic. The Dutch protest vessel Steve Irwin is in the area harassing the shit out of the whalers who are going about their lawful business. They arrive on the scene on the pretense of helping but instead they hinder the search for what will be in the icy waters of the Antarctic, a body.

Paul Watson and his crew are not modern day Jack Sparrows or fun loving irascible pirates they are simply terrorists. They will need to come north to fuel soon and it would be a sad day if New Zealand chooses sides and lets them into our country's waters.

While I accept that the majority of New Zealanders do not support Japanese Whaling , neither will those same people embrace the heartless terrorist actions of the Steve Irwin crew.


Well, this is the first decent political snippet of the year. We had already heard of the general gist of the Key cabinet restructure but this story in the Herald must make Labour wince. For the first time opposition parites will truly be part of the decision making process beign part of the cabinet committees. Well done John and the team. Good start.

Update: And Maori will also be rejoicing in the fact that Key has made Treaty Settlements a priority - according to the Herald this morning. the committee will also look at foreshore and seabed claims

Tino Pai we say!

Tuesday 6 January 2009

PING - great for blog addicts

pinging is the heroin of blogging. Quick fix - high satisfaction PING


I did a real dumb thing today . Rushed into the Farmers 50% off lingerie sale and grabbed two bras without giving them a trial run. One was an "increase the cleavage number" and the other was a mechanical marvel designed to deal with weighty issues and gravity's foul deeds and "minimise me."Hell, I thought only surgery could do that but I was willing to give it a whirl.

You know you are in trouble and need to lose some weight when the shop girl gives you a bag that would hold a beer fridge, to carry two bras out of the shop.

The Cleavage number first - its white and shocking pink - and considering my advancing years, 50 is creeping up the back stairs, we are now more suited to mauve, beige and the occasional saucy black, it was definitely an impulse buy.

I got home wondering why people had been giving me quizzical looks wandering down Manners Mall - I found out when I bent down to get the key to the door and nearly sent a broken underwire up my left nostril. There was no doubt in my nose that I needed new support.

I stripped off and held the the shocking pink padded titty hammocks aloft and swung them on. I stopped breathing - true! My boobies were pushed so far up they were nuzzling my bruised nostrils. I let down the straps to see if that would help and I swear I heard my titskies sigh. The cleavage was so deep and long that it rivalled the Manawatu gorge.

I took the pinkie pouches off and I swear again that my mammaries did a little jiggle of their own volition in celebration of being free.

I wondered if I could strap it to the new shed and grow plants in it.

So onto the second. I leaned over, as they old bra fitting bitches of my traumatised past taught me and hiffed it on. In a mammary moment I realised why the "minimiser" was on sale. My bountiful breasts rested somewhere between my armpits and my shoulder blades. I tried to swing them into position but nearly knocked myself out. They just schlurped back under my arms so that I looked like I had a footy ball under each wing and a chest as flat as the paddock the game is played on.

I wrestled it off - the cups are too flaccid to provide the support needed for wall planters but I reckon, at a pinch, I can strain the jelly jam through them.

Anyway I am demoralised - $64 ( the price of a bowl of crayfish bisque at Zicos and a lovely bottle of soave ) wasted.

And for the record the picture is not me - silly boys, she is clearly a FF cup.

So if anyone would like the offending 18DD unused pink plant hanger and the jelly jam strainers - email me - I will post em for free.


Quite a few people have asked when Million dollar catch on TV3 will screen
I've just had an email from Tv3 - its at the end of February. Other boats will include the Kay Reece - Skipper Johnny Hawkless - ( who used to crew for my dad) and Rewi Bull who skippers the Shangri - La with my delightful young cous Storm as his crew.

There will be others from the Bluff Fleet as well - I sure hope that the Bluff community gets behind their local good ol boys - I can see Mayor Tim getting some mileage for the deep south from the programme.

Monday 5 January 2009


We have had it confirmed that Ross Meurant is back in NZ. We wonder who he is talking to? We wonder who wants to talk to him? We wonder who is considering employing protection?


The standard is going crook about new Fisheries Minister Phil Heatley increasing the allowable sealion bycatch for the squid industry.

We know this issue very, very well. There is nothing "threatened" about the Hooker Sealion population - there are thousands of the buggers in and around the oceans way south of New Zealand where the squid fishery is largely based. Note the use of the word "threatened" rather than "endangered" - which does mean that something is demonstrably in trouble.

BB gets up close and personal ( well as close as you can get considering their propensity to suffer from cetacean halitosis) with these wonderful creatures on a regular basis. We have even hand feed them and swum with them. Never stand in their poop. It is as vile as animal poop gets. Its normally white with little fishy bits in it and very slippery and it sticks to rubber like - well poop sticks to rubber. And they will chase you on land but in the water they dont seem to give a shit about you.

So the Standard and Forest and Bird are getting all hysterical because National has imposed a much more realistic level of by catch from 81 to 113.

Now, in 1998 lots of pups died from some mysterious bug. Curiously and importantly, overcrowding was not discounted as a possible factor in the spread of the unknown malady.

Up until that point there were an estimated 15,000. In 2003 it was estimated that the population was about 13000. Both of these figures are wildly speculative and considered to be a underestimate of actual number which fisheries experts put at about 20,000 . There is a population of about 30 - 35 that resides in Small craft in Port Pegasus. DOC estimated it at the time to be 5 -1o animals which has been one reason we have never trusted their estimates. As you will witness from the pics - an young one on the left and an old beachmaster on the right - they spend quite a bit of time deep in the bush. These two were photographed by BB about 1km inland up a fresh water creek with towering rimu all around.
So DOC takes pics of the ones on the beach - not the ones in the bush - which at any time seem to be about half the population.

They are truly magnificent animals and we were deeply upset when a fisherman shot some of them a few years back and left them to rot on our island beach. However we are also pragmatic and the Squid industry is an important one for New Zealand the forth largest in earnings at 86 million a year.

So at less than one percent this bycatch is still very, very low.

DOC's lickspittles over at Forest and Bird should look at other burning issues like cats on Stewart Island which do huge amounts of damage to small bird life instead of twittering and tweetering about the minimal collateral damage to yet another species of, to coin a phrase from Ta Tipene O'Regan, "charismatic mega fauna." But then thats the rub, F and B wouldn't get much traction for calling for a cull of a heap of bad pussies. So, instead, they just pick on the causes that will appeal to an animal cuddling public to ensure the donations keep flowing. How venal.

Saturday 3 January 2009



back by popular demand - another shot of Zeus doing bad things to the Helen Clark squeaky toy.
Which is still his favourite toy and still squeaking

Friday 2 January 2009


I have always been very proud of my cousins on both sides of the family tree. However Dad's fishing family side from Bluff and Stewart Island are about to become media stars.
The FV X-S ( pronounced excess) owned by my cousin Vaughn Fisher, is a magnificent vessel. The FV Shangri - La is another great workhorse skippered by Gordon Wardrop whose wife is another cousin. Both fish with their sons as crew. Many times when I watched the Deadliest Catch about the Alaskan Crab fishermen, I wondered how long it would be before someone would do something similar with the Southern Rock lobster fishermen. TV3 have done just that with Million Dollar Catch due to screen soon.
Most places Gordon and Vaughn fish are a salty, wet, heart stopping kinda hell. My son was crew for Gordon for a short time before he joined the X-S as crew for Vaughn for a couple of years, before embarking on his dream of becoming a helicopter pilot. He learned well under arguably the top lobster skippers in Bluff.
Various members of our family have been fishing for 6 generations. In fact the crews on both the X-S and Shangri- la are the 7th generation to take to the sea. It is a hard, uncompromising way to earn a living , they earn every big dollar they make and it is exponentially tougher to fish in the South than anywhere else in New Zealand. So if there is one programme you cannot miss this year it is Million Dollar Catch on TV3. The boys will tell it like it is - they know no other way.

The last time I was at my cousin Vaughn's place after the very sad occasion of the funeral of our uncle Peter Topi and our cousins who were drowned when the Kotuku sank in Foveaux Strait coming back from the muttonbird island. In fact up until that terrible day - in the course of 80 years, 14 men in dad's family died at sea.

The boys in Million Dollar catch have a great sense of humour, bawdy and black, honed after many, many hard years at sea. Like many people who have held the stare of the cold hard eyes of death, they embrace life like there may be no tomorrow. So watch Million Dollar Catch , and witness the salt crusted warriors of the southern seas at their outrageous best. And remember they are not larger than life , they just live large lives.

update Rewi Bull bought the Shangri La last year so will be one of the stars of the show. Good bloke and great whanau.