Monday 29 November 2010


We have blogged on the Pheasant before

He has been hanging around our place for a couple of months and is as tame as. He has been nicknamed FARRK because everytime someone sees him for the first time they say " FARRK is that a pheasant?"

Just after this pic was taken he also started drinking bubbles. He was last seen wobbling off into the dark night...
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About 18months ago a boiled head called "Customline Ford" stole our car.

We got it back ourselves, after some serious police inaction, , from the Mobsters in Farmers Crescent in Lower Hutt.

And Cactus ( does the prickly bitch miss anything?) spied this yarn in the Herald. Its the same slippery little shitbag.

However we have it on the best authority that Customline ( who apparently only stands knee high to a mudguard) is NOT a mobster. He maybe a wanna be but he is no longer a Mobster just a dork.


Yes he apparently will steal anything but a holden.


That venerable publication Trans Tasman is well known for having the best insiders knowledge on the weird workings of politics. Its annual scorecard is always smack on. The politician who must be the most worried is Goff. He scored lower than King. Now in this annual summary much intel is gathered from within the ranks of the politicians. So its pretty clear that to get such a crap rating that many of Goffs colleagues must have a very dim view of him.

So where will the 17 meet in the next few weeks?

Sunday 28 November 2010


Posted by Picasa  A mate of matts droppin in . 

Wednesday 24 November 2010


Today is such a sad sad day. We ask for only one thing. That no matter, no matter how hard , the men, all 29, are brought home to their families.

29 men who were kiwi blokes doing their best.

Tuesday 23 November 2010


Like most New Zealanders we are following the Pike River story with a heavy heart. We still hope for that miracle that will see the men return to the surface alive. We have a small understanding of the agony those waiting at the surface will be going through. Years ago we lost our boyfriend at sea. He walked out the door on the Friday to go fishing and never came back. After about three days all they found was an oil slick, no wreckage of the boat and no life raft.

For days we refused to believe that he hadn't got into a life raft and drifted somewhere. Holed up shipwrecked on some rocky outcrop. Deep down we knew he was gone but that didn't stop us from walking the beach each night believing that he would appear out of the waves and stagger from the sea into our arms. That state of unreality lasted long after the funeral. There was no body, so we still clung to hope and closure was a long time coming.

So like the rest of the country our hearts and thoughts are with the wives, mothers, brothers, sons and daughters who are suffering the unbearable agony of the unknown. And like them we still hope that somewhere deep in that mine they have found refuge. But if its the worst that happens then those proud men and boys still need to be brought home.

Monday 22 November 2010


Chris Carter reckoned that there were 17 Labour MPs who were keen to replace Goff .

And after Labours woeful showing in Mana we wonder how long it will be before the knives are out and Goff is removed from office. ?

Friday 19 November 2010


Sometimes people need to see past their own history. Kim Workman had an extensive career in the public service. We met him when he was a big cheese in the prison service. ( he was nicknamed Kimi Workperson because he was so PC )

These days he is strong advocate for prison reform. On some points we see eye to eye.

Now the Wairarapa Times Age has interviewed Kim who claims that Masterton is a racist town. We have had a place in the Wairarapa for about 4 years. We now live their permanently. We have yet to see one scrap of evidence that Masterton is a racist enclave. The incidences that Kim describes are historical and could be replicated in towns large and small throughout NZ.

However, has chosen to brand Masterton with a racist tag and thats doing this proud town a very real disservice.

If Maori are doing anything wrong it is the passive acceptance of a relatively high profile gang presence in the area and the resultant crime. They wear their patches freely in public places. What we need to see from Maori in the Wairarapa is some ownership of the issue. For them to say that this is not acceptable. That would send a powerful message to their children that this cultural aberration is not acceptable.

So Kim should not be spitting his gentlemanly disguised venom at the good people of Masterton for being racist. Instead he should turn his attention to the other Maori leaders in the Wairarapa and work with them to challenge their own people when their behaviour is unacceptable.

If there is any sniff of racism it will stem from the fact the pakeha never see Maori leaders sort out the shit of their own.

If they did that any remnants of racism would be countered.

Its time for Kim to Tane up and show some leadership.

But we dont think he has the balls. Nah its much easier to slag of the good white folks of Masterton instead of getting Maori to own the problem and deal to it. And thats the issue we have with Maori leaders today - the only time they go hard is when money is at stake. Claiming that the money will solve their ills. Crap. Its leadership and a no- nonsense approach thats going to turn the plight of their people around. Whinging only makes it worse. It just perpetuates the myth that the problem is not theirs -it's someone elses.

Thursday 18 November 2010


We have been watching the Mana by election with interest. One of our Maori mates told us they other day that he expected Hekia to win or go dam close. Why? Well she has been endorsed by just about every faction across Maoridom and within the various Pacific communities. She has fronted them, talked good sense and has not made promises she wont be able to keep. Its her frankness and openess that is her strength. She also has that Wahine Toa thing going down as well. There is steel in her spine. She has the X factor when it comes to commanding respect. She doesn't suffer fools and she has considerable intellectual grunt.She is also elegant and easy on the eye. And she laughs a lot . We think she is a cool chick, wouldn't like to cross her, but she has our respect.

She would do the people of Mana proud.

And we are putting our money where our mouth is and investing a few bucks on her winning the seat over on Ipredict

Tuesday 16 November 2010


Yip, the word over the wines at lunch time is that there are three serious players waiting to step in and rescue the Phoenix if Serepisos goes tits up for unpaid tax. Apparently no- one is willing to bail Serepisos out but some of the new moneyed boys are prepared to dig deep and rescue the team if things turn to custard. Names being bandied about include Infratil, Sam Morgan and some blokes we know who will remain nameless.


This has to be the most novel approach to weeding out religious extremists at the border. One Danish politician has recommended that the introduction video for immigrants includes a tasty shot of a good pair of danish norks.

This is to weed out those extremists who believe in the subjugation of women. The mere sight of them is apparently meant to make them understand that this is a society that they wouldn't like to be part of.

“If you’re coming from a strict, religious society that might make you stop and think, oh no, I don’t want to be a part of that”, Peter Skaarup told Danish daily, Jyllandsposten.

“Topless bathing probably isn’t a common sight on Pakistani beaches, but in Denmark it is still considered quite normal. I honestly believe that by including a couple of bare breasts in the movie, extremists may have to think twice before deciding to come to Denmark,” he said.

While it has to be said that Danish women are well recognised for the quality of their breasts we dont think the idea is a winner.

We agree with the conservative Danish politician who reckons that promoting breasts will bring in sexual uptight fundementalists in droves.

However not everyone is excited about Skaarup’s idea.
Integration spokesman for the Conservative Party, one of two government parties, Naser Khader says “a pair of naked breasts is no protection against extremism.”

“It's quite the opposite, fundamentalists are so obsessed with sex that they will be pouring in over the borders.

Yip would be like putting a pedophile in a room of kiddy pictures. Not cool.

Sunday 14 November 2010


We killed five chooks over the weekend and mentioned in a previous blog that I made pate from the liver. A few people have asked for the recipe

First kill your chooks and save the livers. I ended up with about 150gms of livers and be warned my recipes are never that accurate.

So ingredients are

150 gms of livers.
2 medium flat mushrooms
1 rasher of dry streaky bacon
3 spring onions
I large clove of garlic
About a tablespoon of chopped fresh thyme
and the same of parsley
sour cream
a slice of vogels
A glug ofPort ( in the pot!!) ( must be good stuff ) ours was Seven Hills from the Clare Valley in South Australia still lovingly made today by some priests.
And a splash of cointreau.

General navigation
Sweat the onions, garlic and mushrooms in butter, in fact swim them in butter.
Then chop up the livers and turn up the heat a bit ( we have gas) and cook for a few minutes. then get a tablespoon of butter and shine up to a sticky sauce in the pot.
Then take off the heat - let it cool down a bit, slosh in the port, and cointreau
Add the herbs and the bread
Add about two tablespoons of sour cream.
Salt and pepper to taste - I was heavy on the pepper, light on the salt.
Taste again and alter to suit.
put in the blender and blend to a smooth paste. You can pour melted butter on top - make it look a little bit fancy.

Scrape out into a suitable dish and refrigerate. Disguise heavily in the fridge otherwise everyone will eat it.

Beware its loaded with cholestrol.

We decided on the lightish but lovely Morton Estate Stone Creek Marlborough Pinot 2006. Cherries and and softish tannins mingled with the rich earthiness of the pate.


update : thanks anon. Yip the original recipe i bastardised did indeed have a slice of bread in it!

Saturday 13 November 2010


A day of acute embarrassment. Ran out of petrol. duh. the petrol gauge had bust but the Rock fixed it. I didnt know. So when it said it was empty it really was empty. Stopped in the suburban desert on the outskirts of Masterton. AA sorted it.
And while I waited on the side of the road, a young fella who wehad met when we bought a new freezer, came along on his bike and kept me company. He has a slight intellectual impairement but was quite concerned that I was there on the road all alone. Anyway, we talked about all sorts of stuff. He was a lovely chap. Apparently the fireworks are on in Masterton tonight.

Then after filling up the car I was off to pick up 5 roosters to turn them into roasters. It took me about 2 hours to kill pluck dress and hermetically seal them in bags in the freezer. Fascinating to see how physically different they are than bought chooks. Two are big chookies three bantams.
I made a batch of chooky liver and mushroom pate with the livers.. its rich and yum. Just a hint of cointreau and a splash of port. Goes good with vogels.

An interesting day.

Friday 12 November 2010


We have come into contact with many amazing animals in our lifetime but few have had an impact on us as great as both Sealions and Sea leopards.

We live with sea lions on a daily basis on the muttonbird islands and they really are the dogs of the sea and we mean that in a good way. They are intelligent, beguiling, graceful and have a primitive sense of what we believe is humour.

Sea leopards are light years more advanced than sea lions. However they are also considerably more aggressive.

Sealions are like border collies to the Sealeopards huskies.

It is hard to watch a video of some silly, silly young men who on seeing a very, very sick sea leopard decided to pelt it with rocks. Think a wounded dog lying in the street. Its the same - in fact the leopard is probably much more intelligent.

So instead of calling DOC or alerting some one who could either treat the obviously very ill leopard or put the animal out of its misery, the youths decided to torture it.

It is sick.

The criminals deserved much worse than a sentence of 4 months.

Below is some footage which we believe is one of the best examples of how these animals think. It is raw, its powerful and it shows the intellectual depth of these great creatures.

In his own primal way he is giving a gift.

He doesn't harm the penguin. He even takes it up for air. But he wants to give it to the camera man -extraordinary.


Thursday 11 November 2010


There is nothing more fascinating than a fast brewing social media storm.

There are howls of outrage today as foodies around the country find out that Bookseller giant Whitcoulls wont stock the latest cooking tome of top chef and food artiste Martin Bosley.

His new book will be a popular Xmas present and even with a $90 price tag Bosleys stunning food presentation will elevate this book beyond your normal pantry guide.

Bosleys says this
"Despite rave reviews, our stunning new book is not for sale at Whitcoulls as its not 'their kind of book', Makes you wonder what is."

And interestingly the pot is being stirred by another leading chef who loves playing with his food - Kent Baddeley.

Wine writers, foodies critics and Wellingtonians are incensed, the tweets and facebook pages are filling up fast. Whitcoulls will need to act quicker that baking powder in a sponge if its to dampen this one down before it find its self with a spoiled reputation.

Another realtime example of the power of social media. Stuff like this is happening:

"Martin Bosley, @martinbosleys is now trending in New Zealand"

And for those who are interested the #hashtag on twitter is #farkuwhitcoulls.

Power to the peeps, we say.

And yip we will be buying a copy.


While we think that there are a few teachers out there who are too steeped in union politics, we are dismayed to see a story about one who tells it like it is and gets lambasted for it by some parents.

It would have. The shame of it is that the parents didnt tell the girl to pull her head in and pull her skirt down.

You see apparently the girl has " behavioural" problems. More likely that the parents have "issues."

And she was not wearing the skirt at the right length.

They freely admit that the girls skirt was too short. But do they tell the daughter that the teacher was right? No they go after the school and want an apology and a sacking of the teacher.
Good on the principal for sticking up for his staff.

Well, how about MSD coming in and takes the kid away because they are crap parents for letting their bobble headed bint daughter go to school with her skirt round her kidneys in the first place?

So now we have a teacher who does the right thing being publicly pilloried, some parents who are covering up for bad parenting by blaming their daughters bad behaviour on a teacher and a kid who will be a hero among her peers and will be so bloody smug she will be unbearable.

Well thats a lose lose for everyone.

The best outcome would have been for the parents to back up the teacher and punish the girl for being a tart.

We are fostering a new generation of Lolitas who are learning, largely through social media that sex equals power.

We look at the younger generation and we dont feel sorry for the girls - its the boys we worry about.

Tuesday 9 November 2010


So Maori are talking to the government about Mining. We always reckoned that this was where the greatest opportunity lay for Maori - beneath the earth as we predicted here months ago.

So now we see that the Big Swinging Dicks have swung into town and are talking to Gerry and Key about just what deals can be done.

All good we say.

But the best thing we saw in the PM's statement was this.

"I wouldn't say there was a universal desire for Maori to be engaged in mining but there's the potential and they at least want to have the discussion. Given the nature of their engagement, we thought it was a good idea to have that discussion."

He said he was also aware that the Iwi Leaders Group did not speak for all Maori and Government would be talking with other groups as well.

While the Government had made it clear it would not mine in schedule four land, it was interested in expanding other mining activities, Mr Key said.

It was conducting aero-magnetic surveys and having talks with interested parties.

It shows that there has been a shift in the governments thinking. That there has been a realisation that the mana monster aka the Iwi Leaders forum needs to be put in its place. And its time for the government to start talking to some of the Maori Land incorporations.



John Carter has always been one of our favourite National Party MP's. Simply because he is a really nice bloke. He was also a competent Minister. He is very affable, smart, committed to his electorate and he can wear cowboy boots and not look like a dick. In fact by many of the National party sheilas around our age he is considered to be sexy in that rough diamond kinda way.

We like that in an MP.

Monday 8 November 2010


Now we are all for Maori designs being used to promote and indeed capitalise on the Rugby World Cup.

And its good to see some people show some commercial nous and for TPK to open doors and the like - but why should there be any support for a tee-shirt that talks about death?

Now on the face of it , our reaction to the Ka Mate teeshirt seems odd considering our derision for most PC concerns but we are Ngai Tahu and we have a deeply ingrained hatred for the song.

Te Rauparaha raided and killed many Ngai Tahu in an attempt to take over the South Island. What we really want to know is, has any government money been spent on developing these teeshirts?

If so, then its not the wisest investment the government has made in the RWC and to top it off, this weekend witnessed some ugly crowd violence at a rugby league match - so are kids wearing teeshirts talking about dying and killing going to add to a fun, environment at the Rugby World Cup?


We are seriously considering reviving a teeshirt that was made popular by Bluff Fishermen a few years back. It was about the time way back in history when Ngai Tahu got their own back on Te Rauparaha . He had sent some of his kin down south do have a look see and Ngai Tahu welcomed them and then slaughtered and ate some of them abut kept one skinny bugger alive and sent him back to tell the chief to f**k off and never ever consider coming south again.

He didnt .

The even is known colloquially as the "Last Supper at Tuturau" the teeshirts were in the form of a skull and cross bones but the bones were a knife and fork. A bit like the one above..

Might be a job for Mr Vintage..


A day of very ugly headlines ...

Judge dismisses comedian sex case

4:27pm The trial of a well-known comedian charged with a child sex offence has been called off.

Two-year-old's parents sought

3:35pm LATEST: The family of a two-year-old girl found in Otara on Saturday has still not come forward.

Hard up Kiwis out in the cold

3:08pm Destitute Kiwis are being flown home in a bid to help stop a growing begging problem.

Man 'lived with corpse'

An Auckland computer programmer murdered his Thai girlfriend then lived with her decomposing body for nearly a month, a court heard.

Kiwifruit crisis grows

TDN kiwifruit11 min ago Two listed companies are the first victims of a suspected incursion of a bacterial canker


Jackie Sperling is a facebook mate. Never met her but she contacted me when Michael Laws decided to launch a pre-emptive strike against her when he thought she was going to do a tell all over a brief but intense relationship he had with her.

We blogged about it , and initially we weren't on her side. However, we have been in her corner now for some time. In fact we have grown to admire her pluck, courage and wit.

She has a condition even we have suffered from - bastarditis or more commonly known as the Bastard Factor.

Its a tough one to cure but its the chronic attraction to shit men.

Jackie an intelligent, funny thoughtful women who fell headfirst into a pit of despair. She crawled out - owned up - was convicted , found god along the way and is well on track to getting her life sorted.
Then she came to the attention of Laws. Enter the Bastard factor.

Laws wanted Jackie and other relationships, he obviously thought she would be happy to be his bit on the side - When it looked like the story of their relationship looked like surfacing in the media he tried to downplay it.

Sperling has now decided to tell her side of the story and it pretty clear that Laws has a fetish for prostitutes.

Nothing hugely wrong with that, we support decriminalised prostitution.

But its clear from the evidence, Jackie is also a meticulous record keeper, that the narcissistic Laws is really not capable of loving anyone but himself.

She is a good woman. And she will be a better woman than many for spending some time in that pit of dispair and finding her way out. Its just sad that the first bloke she saw when she sat at the top of the pit was Laws.

He is a sad sorry arsed little man. And to borrow a great line from Tim Shadbolt, how can you respect a man who wants to beat up on the gangs and criminals, and beats up on politicians but gets beaten up by his wife?

He is a sad, sick, sorry bastard.

As for Jackie. Well she will be just fine.

Saturday 6 November 2010


We are watching the investigation into the engine failure incident on the Qantas with interest.

We found some jokes .. seems a timely thing to give them an airing.. They were compiled during the hunt for the Air New Zealand Best Blog.

We particularly like these:
Overheard on a Qantas flight into Perth, on a particularly windy and bumpy day: During the final approach, the Captain was really having to fight it. After an extremely hard landing, the Flight Attendant said, "Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to Perth. Please remain in your seats with your seat belts fastened while the Captain taxis what's left of our airplane to the gate!"

Another flight attendant's comment on a less than perfect landing: "We ask you to please remain seated as Captain Kangaroo bounces us to the terminal."

An airline pilot wrote that on this particular flight he had hammered his ship into the runway really hard. The airline had a policy which required the first officer to stand at the door while the Passengers exited, smile, and give them a "Thanks for flying Qantas." He said that, in light of his bad landing, he had a hard time looking the passengers in the eye, thinking that someone would have a smart comment. Finally everyone had gotten off except for a little old lady walking with a cane.
She said, "Sonny, mind if I ask you a question?" "Why no Ma'am," said the pilot. "What is it?" The little old lady said, "Did we land or were we shot down?"

Friday 5 November 2010


We are on the Wairarapa train and as per usual there are quite a few golden oldies using their free gold passes for a free trip. Anyway the conductor told one couple that they would have to get a new gold card because they had an expired.

And unless they had the right dates they were told not to accept them.

Why, we asked, were they so worried? After all, we said- its not like the card carriers are going to get any younger.

However the conductors tell us that there is a heap of fraud and people pass on the expired cards to people who arent yet eligible for them.

Sounds like a story there somewhere..


Well, we have the start of what appears to be a decline in blue cod stocks in Southland but some fishermen are upbeat about the state of the flatfish stocks. Flatfish took a hammering a few years back and as a result the quota was cut considerably. Its estimated that the flat fish Total Allowable catch is worth about the same as Blue Cod - $35million.

However, while fishermen in Riverton think that a couple of good years means that the quota should be up for review, a fishermen for whom we have enormous respect, John Young (aka Bunyion) isnt so sure. He is happy to take a wait and see approach. We agree. Its takes a good five years to work out any meaningful patterns in stock rebuilds.

And if there is an increase in numbers of fish and the quality is right up there - then dig in. flat fish from the deep south especially the big meaty flounders and brill, are significantly better eating than the insipid almost translucent tiny flounders often served in in Wellington fish shops.

And the best way to eat flounder? On the bone. Dusted with season flour, pan fried in butter and served with a beurre blanc.

And wine? A nice dry reisling - Johners would do nicely.

Wednesday 3 November 2010


We were a bit gobsmacked at the Sunday markets last weekend in Masterton, when we ran smack bang into two big hairy arsed Nomad gang members in full regalia. They dont wear their patches so we can all admire their embroidery - no. They do it to intimidate. Allowing them to parade the streets in their gear normalises them. And they aint normal.

We are delighted that Wairoa is looking to ban patches. Its a bloody tough little town and any effort to reduce the power of the gangs is a step in the right direction.

And while we are at it - all government departments should ban gang patches from their buildings..

Get to it guys.. Get rid of gangs and you will make a serious dent in P problem.

Tuesday 2 November 2010


Cod help us - the most delicious fish in the country is in a parlous state.

Blue cod is one of our favourites - and we admit to loving the heads more than the fillets. Our favourite boil up - bar none. Just a few shallots, pepper and salt and boil or steam. Eat, lay, sigh.

It is a staple of the Southland diet and just as Bluff oysters taste better than the same species grown in Nelson, the Southern deep cold sea Blue cod tastes better than cod from anywhere else apart probably from the Chathams.

We use to go commercial blue cod fishing for three or four days every month with our previous partner.

Its a tough fishery, hard demanding and often boring. And its prone to serial depletion. That is the fishermen go where its easiest to catch the fish and they can get fished out quickly.

However there could be a goods reason that the catches are down

The total allowable commercial catch for BCO 5 is set at about 1500 tonnes, fetching more than $35 million when the quota is filled, but Mr Carbines said 300 tonnes less than that was caught on average during the past three years.

"... We can safely say we have concerns for the fishery," he said.

If there is a good year for lobster, those lobster fishermen who hold Blue cod quote dont bother fishing it. And there have been some bloody good years for the lobster fishermen.

We applaud the BCO5 fishermen and the government for engaging in a longish term four year study to find out the true state of the fishery.

And as for the best way to eat Blue Cod ? Sashimi or lightly pan fried in butter with just a smidgeon of tarragon.

Its also excellent in a tempura batter.

And the wine? Olssens Pinot Gris. Its layers of stone fruit lift the ozone out of our country's greatest tasting fish.


There has been an increased debate around animal welfare in the past few years and its all good. Apart from one species. The Crayfish. When you come from a fishing family thats been in the business for 6 generations in New Zealand, you can become anaethetised to killing fish.
Our crayfish or rock lobsters, normally came home in a sack , were chucked in the cool of the wash house tub and then the water of a big mush pot was ready for them when it reached a rolling boil. You quickly dumped them in and jammed the lid on quick as they didn't seem to like the hot water very much.

And in the days of tailing at sea - the body was severed from the head. Probably the worst way to kill them as the bodies remained active for quite some time.

As knowledge increased iki-ing became the done thing. A slice into the body that basically munched the very small brain. Then into boiling water.

So all good - And we see that the BSA has not upheld a complaint that came out of Master chef when a young aspiring chef dunked her cray into boiling water to kill it.

And frankly if its been chilled down long enough and the water is on a good rolling boil - there is little movement from the crayfish.

Now, we iki most fish these days- it stops them wriggling and means you get less spikes in your hands and it has the added benefit of them dying very quickly.

But occasionally we need a reality check - you see the crayfish has quite a close terrestial relative.

And we wonder just who among animal activists is going to go into bat for the extremely common slater or wood lice.

So why should the crayfish warrant more sympathy than a slater?

Personally we tend to ignore slaters, irritating and frikking ugly they may be but they are pretty harmless. And they tend to turn bad shit into good shit.

However if they really annoy us we just squash them - sort of a mega iki.

Works fine for us.

And for the record - one of the most viewed blogs on roarprawn, its about crayfish how to cook it and eat it naked.

And the best wine to go with crayfish?? That simple - any damn fine champagne will do especially the great NZ bubbles we have on offer these days - like the Le Brun Number 1

Monday 1 November 2010


Well, we are definitely supporters of Nikki Kaye but ten points to Jacinda for getting the assistance of some of Aucklands top comedic talent to raise funds for her campaign next year. However she will find that trying to counter Nikki's popularity will be no laughing matter.


We have been harping on about the crap Maori leaders who do a lot of schmoozing and grooving but bugger all to guide their own people out of the poverty pit.

But two recent pronouncements have given us some hope. One , from Mark Solomon, sounds good and wise , but anything from Mark needs to be considered against the backdrop of his fragile leadership. It has the feel of an orchestrated PR campaign.

However, despite the motivation, it is fantastic that Ngai Tahu's big cheese is finally calling for the tribe to tackle domestic violence. Excellent. Now we expect him to follow with some more unpalatable truths, like too many of the tribe have gang affiliations and he needs to condemn them too. And that poverty is still a big issue.So a good start from Solomon. But now we have heard what he thinks we want to know what he is going to do .

Iif Solomon's admittance, that it was time for Maori to take ownership of the issues that Maori have been trying to blame on everyone else wasn't a big and happy surprise , it was a bigger andhappier surprise when Pita Sharples followed suit.

The story is in the Dom this morning and the headline "Put health before beaches says Sharples" - gives you the picture. We think that this speech is a turning point for the party. It is an acknowledgment of what really matters to the rank and file.
It shows that there are many more things that will change the destiny of Maori than some technical access and ownership to some land that is well used and cared for now.

"For many of my friends they dont even know whats going on with the foreshore and seabed......

But they know whats going on at home when they are hungry.

They know whats going on at home when then havent got jobs....

These are the sorts of things that our people are dealing with day to day and thats why I really would like us to think why we are in parliament.

There were a few good stories in the media this morning but none more important than Sharples telling the Maori Party Conference that the issues of health and crime were far more important to Maori than beaches.

It is the best thing that Sharples has said for a bloody long time. The grievances of old need to be sorted but in terms of priority, diabetes, domestic violence, infanticide, education and drugs merit more effort and attention.

Maori dont need to "own the beaches" to feel better or have a better life. But they do need to own the social problems they are facing collectively and individually.

As two of the more prominent Maori leaders have now put this issue on the the nations paepae
we think that the debate will gain some momentum. Whanau Ora could well be the start. Ad it begs the question - Is this the beginning of the true Maori renaissance?