A Query to the Taxpayers Union



Oravida - Cartoon-Rod-Emmerson-GIF


A comment by Sally Randell, on The Daily Blog, raised this interesting point;

Why was Judith Collins in China anyway?

She is justice Minister, not trade minister.

Cheers, coz I can’t find it via google

Which is intriguing. Ms Randell is quite correct; Collins has no portfolios that would necessitate an expensive tax-payer funded trip – complete with a coterie of staffers – to travel thousand of kilometres to China. Airline fares. Plus hotel accomodation. Plus meals.

This would have cost thousands of taxpayer’s dollars.

How many hungry children; endangered species protection;   or hip operations could this money have paid for?

Accordingly, I wrote to the Taxpayers Union on this matter;

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FROM:   "f.macskasy"
SUBJECT: Judith Collins
DATE:    Wed, 12 Mar 2014 10:39:48 +1300
TO:     "Taxpayers Union" <tipline@taxpayers.org.nz> 


Kia ora,

I am aware that your Union recently condemned the cost
incurred by Green MP, Ms Mojo Mathers, in a trip she made to
Masterton to participate in a radio interview on

Accordingly, will you be investigating and commenting on the
trip made by National MP and Minister, Judith Collins, for
her recent taxpayer-funded trip to China? 

Ms Collins' portfolios include  Minister for Ethnic Affairs;
  Minister of Justice; and Minister for ACC.

It is unclear what purpose was served by a trip to China as
none of her portfolios relate directly  to foreign affairs
or trade.

Will you also be investigating and commenting on the
conflict of interest posed by her visit to Orivida - a
Chinese company of which her husband is a Director?

This appears to be little more than a tax-payer funded
'junket' and I await your response to this in the light of
your critical stance taken regarding Ms Mathers' trip to

-Frank Macskasy


Ms Mathers’ trip cost taxpayers an estimated $500-$600.

Collins’ junket reportedly cost us $36,000.

It’ll be interesting if Jordan Williams lays into Judith Collins with the same gusto he did with Green MP, Mojo Mathers.

What are my chances?!


*** Up date ***


Evidently my “chances” weren’t too flash.

This was Jordan Williams’ response to my query to him;


Jordan Williams - 12.2.14


Hi Frank,

We commented on Mojo as a result of the Herald calling us and 
asking for such.  Of course we will do the same if asked.


Jordan Williams

Executive Director  |  New Zealand Taxpayers' Union Inc.


So… I take it from Mr Williams’ reply that we will not be hearing from the Taxpayers’ Union unless the media asks them to comment?  And if the media doesn’t make any requests for comment – we’ll never hear from them at all, ever again?

I do believe Jordan Williams has just demonstrated – with crystal clarity – the pro-National partisanship of his “Taxpayers Union”.





TV1 News:  Key puts Collins on warning, opposition calls for sacking


The Daily Blog – Chris Trotter: Dispelling The Negatives: Judith Collins refuses to cry over spilt milk

Previous related blogposts

“It’s one of those things we’d love to do if we had the cash”

Doing ‘the business’ with John Key – Here’s How (Part # Rua)




Op Shopping by Tolley and Collins

Above image acknowledgment: Francis Owen



= fs =


  1. Not just the pro-National partisanship of the Taxpayers Union, but also the pro-National partisanship of the mainstream media. Spot on though, Frank. You would think they would be all over this, i.e. calling the media themselves in order to exercise their “defense of Taxpayers”. But it seems to be more a case of them being a not seen or heard entity unless the media need a way to paint neoliberals as heroes of the people. I wonder if my old mate Jordan will be appearing on The Nation this week?..

  2. Shows up the stink hypocrisy and gross double standards of
    the Taxpayers Union, and there have been other junkets form National Party members which have gone unnoticed and uncommented on by the Taxpayers Union

  3. Perhaps you could to write back to Mr Jordan who works for The-Front-for-Big-Business Union and request his comment on the matter of Collins trip?

    A blogsite like this could come under the term ‘media’ after all.

  4. Perhaps we should all write to Granny and ask if they will be going to the Taxpayers Union asking for comment on Crusher’s trip.

  5. Maybe you could ask Cameron Slater to ask Mr Williams that vital question, Frank. Afterall, he calls himself a jonolist.

  6. The Minister was in China at the request of the Chinese judiciary hopefully giving them a few pointers on Western freedom
    I don’t know but they may have paid for the visit as they often do, see Mayor Brown for details on how to this

  7. I’ve changed my mind; I encourage the entire world to punch this guy in the dick.

    That reminds me, where’s Gasman been lately? I haven’t seen him trolling up these boards since Collins came a cropper. Are the cognitive dissonance prevention briefings really that intense?

  8. The hypocrisy of that “NZ Taxpayers’ Union” and the MSM (mainstream media) is shocking and utterly appalling. But it is not surprising. So they do not comment upon Frank’s letter, and will only comment if the MSM ask them to.

    With most of the media having trivialised the conduct by Judith Collins, and only reported on it briefly after some Labour frontbenchers and Winston Peters hammered her during question time, we can expect little or no comment from Jordan Williams and his staff. We know his background and affiliations, we know that David Farrar is leader of that “union” also. So we can expect nothing else but what may be published on the latter’s Kiwiblog.

    I have noticed a few things about how the media treated the revelations about Collins and her conflict of interest. Shaun Plunket on Radio Live has spent little time on the issues, and he has before displayed a kind of conduct and sentiment towards Collins, which I can only perceive as being very favourable and understanding towards her. I would not rule out that he is on friendly terms with Collins. So today there was little or no discussion of the Collins affair on his show.

    Duncan Garner has on the same radio station also displayed a rather “soft” kind of reporting and “criticism” of Collins. He was all over Cunliffe, when the trust matter came up, taking him to pieces with ruthlessness. What a different treatment of a senior National Party member and minister.

    TV One and TV3 did report a fair bit yesterday, but it was all over and done with after only a few minutes. There was little more reported today, so it all looks like it is going to be swept under the carpet.

    You see similar low level attention to this by other media, and it shows so clearly how biased and basically pro government the MSM are. The persons working for them, especially their editors, all seem to be very “warm” towards Key and the National led government, and on the other hand will attack, endlessly criticise and label Cunliffe and most from Labour and the Greens.

    So with all that, how can any opposition party in this country have any realistic chance to get their message across, how can “democracy” function, when there is only one sided information available?

    New Zealand rather resembles something like a “soft version” of a sophisticated “banana republic” kind of country, nothing else.

    And if Labour and Greens will not win the election, we have no prospect for things to improve, as only they may “consider” to restore a truly more balanced and informing public broadcasting system.

  9. As the poster above said, email him back & ask for comment as a media commentator. Or does he only comment to the Herald?

    Obviously we all know hes just a NACT shill, but his reply will be good for a laugh….

  10. Oh well done!! I’ve seen that slimy bastard at Back benches trying to chat up women. You’ve dealt to him nicely Frank!

    And yes! Write back to him!! Tell him you’re MEDIA and want an answer to what he’s going to do!

  11. Trust a little sycophantic National toad like Jordan Williams to duck any attempt at even resembling non-partisanship.

    By all means, message him back Frank. I seriously doubt you’ll get any kind of sensible answer out of him.

  12. I see Burnt Out Teacher and Matthew beat me to it, but what the hell:

    According to Cameron Slater, a blogger and friend of the Taxpayers’ Union’s founders, bloggers are the media. And one is asking them to comment.

    Or did Williams’ message mean exactly what it said – that only the Herald gets to ask? Fairfax will be disappointed…

  13. Ok, ok, I surrender! 😀

    I’ve emailed Jordan Williams along the lines that Burnt Out Teacher, Priss, AHL84001, Matthew, and Psycho Milt suggested…

    I’ll do a follow up blogpost if/when Mr Williams responds.

    Jeez, you guys are tough on me! 😉

    (And keep it up!!)

Comments are closed.