Perceptions Of Corruption Damaging To New Zealand’s International Reputation

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A COUNTRY IN NEED OF JUDICIAL LEADERSHIP

Analysis by Selwyn Manning.

Selwyn Manning.
Selwyn Manning.
The cache of evidential material underlying claims that corruption exists at the heart of New Zealand’s Government suggests the scope of the Prime Minister’s initiated inquiry is too narrow – Especially as New Zealand’s international reputation must now be considered.

The two inquiries (the Inspector General of Intelligence and Security and the Prime Minister’s initiated inquiry) are too narrow and convey a realisation that the Government has not faced up to a glaring fact, that under its watch a culture of perceived corruption was allowed to fester at the very heart of power.

The PM’s inquiry only looks at whether the former Minister of Justice Judith Collins provided information to Cameron Slater to fuel ‘hits’ against the Serious Fraud Office director. And the Inspector General of Intelligence and Security inquiry only looks at whether Government process was properly observed when the Security Intelligence Service released redacted documents to Cameron Slater in August 2011.

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Clearly, if the allegations on multiple fronts are true, this issue of perceived dirty politics is much larger and broader than the Government intends to admit to.

The allegations distill down to a perception that corrupt practice in the pursuit of political gain had been used by officers/staff and (in at least one case) an elected member of New Zealand’s Executive Government.

scales-of-justice-statueIt is important to point out that these allegations are exactly that: are officially unproven but derived from evidence that is now reasonable to consider legitimate, raw data that has been tabled in the public domain, that the High Court’s Justice John Fogerty deemed worthy of publication in the public interest. The raw data that when considered in isolation, and brought together as a sum, leads to a persuasive conclusion that the entire matter ought to be tested by a broad-based independent judicial forum. (Ref. NZHerald).

It is in consideration of the public interest that we document a summary of the allegations in this report to demonstrate why a Royal Commission of Inquiry must be established, not only in the public interest but also in the National Interest.

The allegations primarily focus on:

  • The perception that elected members of the Executive Wing of Government have overseen (and in at least one case were likely directly involved in) the manipulation of the public’s understanding of the good governance principles of government;
  • A Minister of the Crown had allegedly encouraged clandestine attacks on the investigative elements of government (the Serious Fraud Office);
  • A Minister of the Crown allegedly provided the identity of a public servant to a notorious attack-blogger/friend… that the information contained the identity, title, and contact details of the public servant, an official of the government, who the Minister believed had leaked official information;
  • Additionally it is alleged that that Minister remained silent while the public servant was vilified publicly;
  • It is also alleged that that Minister failed to attempt to stop the attacks, or to front on the issue, or use her considerable influence to curb the vilification of the public servant even once the degree of loathing for the public servant intensified to the point where death threats were made;
  • It is also alleged that a member/s of the Office of the Prime Minister was/were involved in an ongoing task to clandestinely pass information damaging to the National-led Government’s opponents to the attack-blogger and that the practice was an abuse of the power assumed by such high office, and was of a clandestine nature so as to protect the Prime Minister and other elected members of Government from any negative public perceptions against their character.

As mentioned above, the public interest is cited as justification for listing the allegations.

THE INQUIRIES:

To date, is mentioned above, two inquiries have been announced:

  • the Prime Minister’s initiated inquiry into former Justice Minister Judith Collins’ activities (scoped down to investigate solely allegations that she wrongfully sought to undermine Adam Feeley, the director of the Serious Fraud Office in 2011),
  • and the Inspector General of Intelligence and Security’s inquiry into the release of declassified intelligence information to Whaleoil blogger Cameron Slater.

But neither inquiry will broadly investigate the raft of claims that, if true, cumulatively point to a culture of corruption within New Zealand’s Executive Government. As such, neither inquiry cited above will satisfy the public interest.

While both inquiries are important elements, in their isolation and in a state of disconnect, each fails to assure an outcome that will engender a public confidence in the good and professional governance of this country’s affairs.

As such, the Prime Minister risks undermining the public interest should he continue to refuse a Royal Commission of Inquiry and neglects that most essential measure of a democratic economy’s character, the National Interest.

Let’s consider the National Interest.

AN HONOURABLE NATIONAL IDENTITY IS A PRIZED JEWEL INDEED:

The rationale goes that New Zealand must now be seen to actively repair a perception that its good governance principles have been damaged.

New Zealand’s international reputation as an honest broker on the trade circuit is at risk. This is a vulnerability where opportunistic trading economies currently competing against this Nation (in produce, agriculture commodity markets) may be quick to exploit.

Already, New Zealand’s reputation on the diplo-circuit has been dented. It is now clear members of New Zealand’s diplomatic corp, serving abroad, have fielded inquisitions on the validity of the alleged dirty politics scandal.

Add to this a surety of how embassies, high commissions, and consulates based in New Zealand, representing the world’s most powerful states, will have been cabling back to Washington, Beijing, London, Paris, Canberra documents that consider the quality of the allegations, an assessment of the raw data, and an analysis of what this means for the Government of New Zealand, the election, the degree of public interest, the public’s confidence factor and quotient, and a recommendation on how their respective countries should handle the affair – the strengths, the weaknesses of their own policy positions with respect to New Zealand.

UN secretary general, Ban Ki-Moon.
UN secretary general, Ban Ki-Moon.
Consider also, right at this time, the sensitivities involving New Zealand’s very costly pitch to be appointed non-permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council.

To be successful, the New Zealand Government’s credentials must be beyond question. It must be perceived by the United Nations General Assembly to be beyond corruptible on matters of national and international importance.

This is a serious matter.

United Nations secretary general Ban Ki-Moon’s visit to New Zealand last week was made at an opportune time. Officially he visited this country to receive an Honourary Doctorate from the University of Auckland. He also met with Prime Minister John Key. (Ref. ForeignAffairs.co.nz).

As Fairfax reported:

Key, who has been campaigning around the world for New Zealand’s seat at the Security Council, took the chance to emphasise the country’s commitment to the UN since it was established in 1945. And despite New Zealand’s size, its contribution to the international community has always been recognised. “We are a small country but we have held an independent foreign policy and a strong voice for a very long period,” Key said. “We are consistent in what we do and I think people respect the views of New Zealand. “We want to thank you for your friendship to New Zealand,” he said to Ban. (Ref. Fairfax).

But the UN secretary general would not be drawn on it.

The secretary-general would not comment on the potential success of New Zealand’s push for a seat the Security Council, which will be decided in October. But he acknowledged New Zealand’s long support for the UN.

“I am aware that New Zealand is very enthusiastic to serve in the Security Council. As you may appreciate as the secretary-general I am not in a position to say anything.

“This is a matter to be decided by the member states themselves,” he said. (Ref. Fairfax).

Prior to his arrival here, as all leaders are, Ban Ki-Moon will have been thoroughly briefed by his officials on the most important issues confronting the host-government. The briefing would also have included the significant elements of public discourse surrounding those issues.

Nicky Hager launches Dirty Politics book. Image courtesy of Scoop.co.nz.
Nicky Hager launches Dirty Politics book. Image courtesy of Scoop.co.nz.

The UN secretary general would have become well aware of the dominant narrative of the early election campaign – the claims and allegations underscored within investigative journalist Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics.

Add to this the fact that raw data had been publicly released (information that supported the founding premise in Dirty Politics); additional to this it is reasonable to believe Ban Ki-Moon will have been informed of how the Prime Minister had denied the validity of the information, attacked the messenger, smeared it as a left-wing conspiracy, and only accepted the Minister of Justice’s resignation after raw information was passed directly to his office under dubious circumstances. It is also reasonable to suggest, on fathoming this backstory, the briefing will have raised unanswered questions for the secretary general about the appropriateness of New Zealand being appointed to the United Nations Security Council.

TRADE PARTNER SENSITIVITIES:

In March, when the Oravida scandal erupted, what was generally not considered by New Zealand’s press was the embarrassment caused to the People’s Republic of China.

The Honourable Judith Collins.
The Honourable Judith Collins.

As was reported at the time: the Minister of Justice, Judith Collins, was accused by her political opponents of committing a conflict of interest during an overseas trip to China where she ‘dropped in’ and ‘endorsed’ the milk product produced by Oravida – a company which exports dairy products from New Zealand to China. Collins’ husband, it was discovered, was a director of the company.

At first the Prime Minister defended Collins, and, Collins received a fairly soft reprimand for allowing a perception of a conflict of interest to occur. As the Prime Minister quipped at the time, it was “unwise” of her.

But what was most damning for Collins and the Government were subsequent reports that revealed while in China a Chinese government official had attended a dinner-meeting with Collins and a small gathering of Oravida executives.

Collins insisted there was nothing to it, but the small gathering, with a border official in attendance, added a further dimension to an already highly charged issue. The meeting also underscored a sensitivity among Chinese diplomats who felt Collins’ actions in China fueled rumours in the west that a culture of favoritism, bribery, and corruption was in evidence among its border officials.

For the opposition parties, the Prime Minister was said to be lenient (at best), weak (at worst) over his handling of Collins.

When members of the opposition demanded in Parliament that Collins name the Chinese official, the Prime Minister, members of his office and department staff, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) officials, all knew that if they did name the official it would cause a diplomatic incident. The reason? Because it was a particularly sensitive point considering China had been preparing to expand the number of Free Trade Agreements among western trading partners. And as such China needed to ensure it was beyond tolerating a culture of sleaze among its border and trade officials. In recent years China has crushed the livelihoods and in some cases the lives of corrupt officials. It was determined to demonstrate the People’s Republic had advanced a framework founded on good professional governance.

Collins’ actions, and the Prime Minister’s soft handling of the issue, offered the perception of corruption to breathe.

To be clear, the perception was: that a Minister in the New Zealand Government was alleged to have facilitated the betterment of her husband’s business interests through the association of her sworn Ministerial title at a meeting with a Chinese border control official.

Additionally, prior to this, New Zealand Government had also become a problematic trade partner exporting child milk formula brands marketed by Fonterra to China and elsewhere that was at first believed to be contaminated with botulism bacteria. PRC diplomats had already warned New Zealand that a repeat of such unsatisfactory safety/quality standards would see access to the Chinese market blocked for New Zealand dairy products.

The latter issue saw the Prime Minister John Key travel to China in an attempt, aided and prepared by New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade officials, to ease tensions and advance PRC-New Zealand trade relations – a feat Key certainly achieved.

Inter-economy trade relations are like marriages, they require constant attention. And the above paragraphs underscore the kind of work New Zealand’s diplomatic corp does, often in silence, on issues of major National Interest.

It is understood that MFAT officials right now are working to ensure no hostile or competitive trading nation makes a move to exploit renewed claims that the New Zealand Government is loathed to address the perception of alleged corruption.

IN CONCLUSION

NZ-FlagFor a progressive democracy, the most destructive allegation a government can face is one of institutionalised corruption.

Long has New Zealand enjoyed a reputation on the world stage as an honest broker on issues of human rights and good governance. In our name successive governments have exported our rationale and legislative frameworks for other states to also embrace. It is important work on a global stage.

So when allegations of corruption surface, and information is presented to the public domain, when that information appears to justify the claims, the Government must act in a manner equal to the severity and seriousness of what it is accused of. To permit ignorance to take hold is as bad as a cover-up.

In this case of dirty politics, and all the elements that this issue entails, the Government must initiate a broad-based Royal Commission of Inquiry. And depending on its findings, it may well be necessary for a body to be established that asserts a purpose to eradicate a culture that fails to meet the good governance standards required of all developed and developing states.

This investigation is copyright of and syndicated by MIL OSI and was first published on LiveNews.co.nz.

37 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks for this added dimension to the ripples. However just one query . Are you sure John Key’s trip to China achieved its aims? That’s not what I have heard regarding access of New Zealand whey Base concentrate. It is still banned according to some sources, eg RNZ Doubts about NZ credibility and honesty as a trading nation will only be intensified by the questions being asked by Massey Uni scientists regarding milk from Taranaki land farms which has tested positive for Barium, hydrocarbons, toluene, PCBN etc. All byproducts of fracking I guess. Control farms tested clear and yet MPI is in denial! Are these morons trying to destroy our economy completely? All so we can kowtow to oil industry aims. This should become an Election issue.

  2. An excellent analysis Selwyn Manning. Thank you. However there is one problem. I appreciate you have to be careful in your wording of the article, but I don’t:

    Those of us who have taken the time and trouble to read the book – and the online news publications of the emails from whence the information was sourced – can say with some confidence that John Key was deeply implicated in the dirty politics scandal. Therefore, there is no chance he will agree to a Royal Commission of Inquiry. Our only hope is a change of government which is not looking too bright at this point in time.

    • Anne; I totally agree with your sentiments.

      Back in the early 2000’s when National embarked on their campaign to have a new type of leader, as it turned out, whose most important credentials were being excessively rich followed by a slick salesmen repertoire who saw politics as a game that must be won, it appears at any cost, then the trade-off was always going to be to New Zealand’s straight reputation.

      I cannot reconcile the Merrill Lynch fast buck money trader personality from a sector that gave the world the Global Financial Crisis with a publicly minded, straight forward honest NZ Prime Minister.

      It’s also a big concern that the same party that gave NZ this Prime Ministerial model has it eyes on the Auckland Council mayoralty using the same leadership attributes.

      • Yes XRAY, quite right, But I’d add to that:

        ” . . . . a willingness to do as he is told by super-wealthy lobby groups external to NZ – such as the Bilderberg group.”

        Hence Key’s enthusiastic support for the Pan Pacific Trade agreement as a vehicle for the selling out of NZ’s sovereign interests and economic and legislative independence to big American and European corporate interests.

    • Selwyn has clearly spelt out the ‘ONLY’ election issue. Thank you. Your wise insightful analysis can only add to a growing body of thinking people demanding to know the truth.

  3. It must be really annoying for those wishing to turn this molehill into a mountain that subsequent opinion polls have shown that support for National is barely scratched.

    Instead of focussing on dirt digging & innuendo, maybe the Left should’ve put together some policy statements that could stand at least casual scrutiny.

    • You mean a policy statement like a piss weak tax cut 3 years from now, that even then NZ can’t afford, whilst still racking up incredible amounts of debt? Well thats a National Party one anyway.

    • @Andrew.

      You are so very wrong Andrew and speak in blind ignorance. The people who started this are not the left, but rather this dirty sleezebag corrupt National govt.
      It was them who were doing all the skullduggery,as is now proven.

      Your vote for gNats will be a wasted vote, in fact you may as well not bother – unless you want to make a vote for corruption, and the taking of food out of the mouths of babes.

      You will find out after the 20th September who the loser is – and I reckon it will be you and your ilk!

      FJK is so corrupt he is stopping a Royal Commission of Inquiry into his dirty filthy ways of making himself lots of money, while he does his best to bankrupt our country! If he had nothing to hide, this would be already underway, in the interest of our country.

      FJK be gone!!! And be quick about it!! Bugger off and live in one of those countries that don’t have extradition orders, or be done for Treason you greedmongerer!!!!

      And the Governor General needs a boot up his jacksie too. This is the time in a country when the GG is supposed to step up to bat – and what’s he doing? Do we have a GG anymore, or is he off hiding too?

      Anyone who votes National at this election is signing a paper to say they agree with corruption at the highest levels, and that they are personally without morals.

      Opinion and belief.

    • Molehill into a mountain?? Rather the right trying to turn a mountain into a molehill. Have you no care for our democracy. It is ppl like you who are to blame for the mess this country is in. Your eyes are open, presumably you have a brain, (not choosing to use it, is your responsibility) and working ears. Why can you not see what is in front of you? My theory is that – you can!- you just refuse to give a toss, so long as things are working out for YOU, NOW. Not a thought for the future of our country.

  4. Judith Collins will be found not guilty of wrongdoing against Adam Feeley because he apparently kept his job after the Whaleoil stuff.

    The reason the enquiry focuses on this particular email is because Judith Collins is talked about, there is nothing from her personally. All she has to do is deny.

    The dirty tricks continue.

  5. “…Ban Ki-Moon will have been thoroughly briefed by his officials on the most important issues confronting the host-government … it is reasonable to believe Ban Ki-Moon will have been informed of how the Prime Minister had denied the validity of the information, attacked the messenger, smeared it as a left-wing conspiracy…”

    Where did the information come from which Ban Ki-Moon received through his officials? Surely it has to come through official Government sources.

    I have enough faith that there is institutionalised corruption for the important, real information to not have been provided. Which leaves TV news and Mike Hosking repeating the “left-wing smear campaign” PM line.

    And who wouldn’t believe him? I mean he has such an honest face and he plays golf with Barrack doesn’t he?

  6. The only consistent policy Key and the gNatz have ever got right is growing the 260,000 kids in poverty. That and ensuring that the parents of those kids are either a) unemployed or b) the working poor.

    Key promised over 200,000 new jobs the first time he got elected … we got a bicycle path that employed 200 instead.

    And he almost got the numbers right , except that what he really meant was he was going to create 260,000 kids in poverty . Well I guess we all misquote the numbers and what our real intent is at times, dont we….its only human.

    But the really neat policy he had is the borrowing of over 200,000,000 every week to ‘prop up welfare’. Its so neat this one,….a clever little way to make sure the super rich get tax cuts , – whilst blaming it all on the poor, lazy workers and beneficieries.

    Stroke of bloody genious , mate !

    And we really like the latest policy of his…tax cuts of up to a whopping $10 per week !!!!!! WOW!!!

    My God that guys brilliant !!

    But the really great thing about this particular policy is that maybe , – just maybe – we will get that phenominal politically groundbreaking policy enacted in the year 2017!!!!

    What a bloody ripper !!!

    This guys just so full of it , its unbelievable !! Where would we be without him?

    Prosperous? secure? wealthy ? soveriegn ?

    Nah!…we dont want that here in New Zealand……surely not.

  7. John Key has not created 260,000 kids in poverty.

    First of all NZ’s measurement of poverty is ‘first world poverty’. There are no children in NZ living in 3rd world poverty. None.

    Secondly there were large numbers of children living in this alleged poverty when National came to office in 2008, so not all of these children are in ‘poverty’ because of national policies.

    And finally, we have borrowed tens of millions of dollars during the GFC to protect the most vulnerable, something the left seem to not agree with.

    • IV.
      You appear to have no sense of morals.
      You need to get your hand out of FJKs pocket, and learn to stand on your own two feet.

      FJK HAS created 260,000 impoverished children in our NZ families.
      FJK has NOT reduced this number at all – and this is fact. It has only increased, and he has had long enough to fix it. And think on IV, all the parents of all those children, certainly won’t be voting for our very dodgy FJK at this election.

      You know, I often look around me, and I wonder how our debt as a country managed to be up there in the multi-multi billions of dollars – because when I look around me, I can’t see it anywhere!

      Opinion.

    • Thank God you have spoken, oh wise one. Where would we be without ppl like you? Far, far better off is where we would be. There is a difference between first world poverty and third world poverty, not to a kid that hasn’t eaten for days!!! Stop trying to rationalise the poverty we now find ourselves in, it doesn’t work for anyone except yourself and the other evil ones out there. I can’t wait for the 20th, maybe morons such as yourself will go into hiding, being too ashamed to show your thoughts to those of us who give a damn.

  8. Did anyone see the article in the Herald about Aroha?

    You know….the 12 year old girl FJK decided to take to Waitangi day celebrations as an apology by proxy (political stunt – in her words) to her mother for insulting her about where they lived in Mt Albert ?…

    Well…shes 20-22 now ,…and stated she would NEVER vote for FJK.

    Why?

    Because shes now living in Australia , happily married , and is about to buy her first house with her husband.

    Its 3 bedroomed, has a swimming pool , and they have a late model vehicle.

    She got a job soon after moving to Aussie and works in a warehouse.

    Earning $38 .00 per hour .

    She says she will never return to New Zealand – ‘ that she returns to visit her Mum ..and sees the struggle and poverty in New Zealand….and how bad its really become’.

    And this dumbarse and corrupted National govt really thinks people are fooled by all the bullshit they spin…

    And Aroha ?…..All power to ya , mate.

  9. Anyways…seems a few lessons can be learned yet again from the Aussies…as they seem to have had a few serious cases of corruption themselves.

    Setting up an independant corruption unit/department in several states seemed to have curtailed it abit. Keeping it independant is the other thing , however.

    Thats the thing about corruption – the very checks and balances put in place to protect against it become the very targets of that corruption.

    When you have a police force who turn a blind eye and are slow to act, internal inquiries so easily loaded in the defendants favour (as it stands now ) , an old boys network , officials whose job it is to ensure independance …yet appointed by that same govt , …security organisations whose heads are appointed by that govt….a media who takes its cue from a – blogsite – as well as slanting news items in favour of a govt….

    What have you got?

    A recipe for TOTAL CORRUPTION !!! VOILA , FOLKS !!!!!

    SOOOOOO…waddaya do about it?…well for a start…no more cosy little appontments by the PM or the incumbents…

    The only way were going to be able to set it all in motion is have a CROSS PARTY APPOINTMENT AND VETTING SYSTEM…..

    Not tainted by ‘inhouse’ appointments…even then…the monitors will need to be the monitored.

    And ,..taxpayer funded .

  10. The only perceptions of corruption are those of the deviant/leeching left bludgers who want to tax by envy, and bring all those that have succeeded through hard work and businesses practises, down to their parasitical levels. I will be laughing when they are giving a real backside kicking at the polls.

    • If rigging polls, having a servile MSM , exploiting people by paying them a wage you would never dream of working for yourself, knowingly voting for a party you know to be corrupt ,………….well…your entitled to your opinion.

      But your still an arsehole by most peoples standards.

    • I’ve always found when the greedy, brainless one’s try to justify themselves, they will always, always bring it down to jealousy, envy etc., because that is all they know. The thought that they are leaders, that others are all about wanting to be the same as them, have the same as them, it’s what keeps these losers going!! I love seeing it. It shows me how tiny their own minds are and there is no way I would swap my being for anything these ppl value.

  11. In the world of international deal making, TPP, secrecy, surveillance, XKeyscore, Sharia banking law, BIG oil, money and greed – you might just have to collude with a few fellow narcissists to get the deal done. Politics, money and greed baby.

    Wouldn`t it be hilarious if we found out the NZ govt had signed us up to Sharia Banking Central in Bahrain via the TPP, like the UK – and Kiwis were paying a tax to Islam. Nahhh we wouldn`t, would we? Or, that we`d lost our intellectual capital rights to international law – and the incredibly paranoid US law machine. Hahaha funny, but of course, what we don`t now can`t hurt us – so, lets keep it a secret eh, eh, eh.

  12. Fantastic piece Selwyn Manning .

    ” For a progressive democracy, the most destructive allegation a government can face is one of institutionalised corruption. ”

    I’ve been alleging institutionalised corruption for many years now . And not exclusively by The National Party either . Remember the mid 1980’s ? Remember what The Labour Party shat out after a particularly heavy night of beers and fish and chips ?

    A disfigured and abstract element of that polite yet devastating corruption has existed within the halls of our Parliament for years and years and thus has become the frame work for our entire socio economic mandate .
    Hungry children , the limping , ageing work force that can’t get a hip fixed and confused and frightened people who reluctantly leave their home lands to seek a better life don’t come from a compassionate politic with the best interests of its people at heart .

    We Kiwis are unbelievably lucky that we have a fabulous country that can grow anything in almost any quantity . We have the cleanest water ( Cowsploiters are fucking that up though ) and a huge amount of room within which to play . Robin Wlliams quipped about NZ . ” God said , I’m gonna make a huge theme park and call it New Zealand / Aotearoa ”
    And there are only 4.3 million of us .

    So , where the fuck is our money then ?

    I wrote a letter to QE2 dated 15 March 2013 re the above . Her office replied 21st March 2013 stating that QE2 had seriously considered some of the points I raised with regard to my alleged corruption and of how damaging that corruption had become to us as a people of a Commonwealth country . Her secretary went on to say that my letter had been forwarded on to the Governor General for his consideration .

    ( Interestingly , after I wrote that letter , we saw a flurry of Royals flocking into NZ and I also saw jonky , looking very worried , heading into Balmoral Castle for ‘ dinner ‘ with QE2 . I doubt there was a connection but then again ? One will never know . )

    So C’mon Jerry ? I’m still waiting mate ?

    I think The Governor General has some answering to do ?

    I think he needs to dissolve the Government immediately pending a Royal Commission of Inquiry , it’s become that bad .

    And I wouldn’t get too worried about our so called ‘ trading partners ‘ getting miffed about any real , or perceived , corruption here . We produce what the world needs in abundance . No , not Latte sipping Gentiles hoarding up and down Queen Street in their Calvin’s .
    We grow food . And we grow a lot of it in an unbelievably efficient way . Historically , a bloke , his wife and the kids with a couple of dogs and a tractor mate .
    Take my family and I ? There was myself , as a fifteen year old . My Mum , my Dad and five dogs . We managed 5000 sheep and three hundred ‘ head ‘ of cows on three thousand acres in the lower hills of mid Canterbury . Prior to that , we had a 650 acre farm near Gore . We produced thousands of tons of produce annually , including grains , wool and meat . ( Yuk ! I’m no red meat eater these days . )
    We had to brace ourselves against the rigours of the weather , particularly in Canterbury where , during our first winter in 1974 , we had five feet of snow fall evenly over our entire property of about five square miles and killed 800 sheep in the process .
    The point I’m trying to make here is that NZ farmers achieve Herculean results with a cup of tea and a love of their art form .
    Get rid of the liars , cheats , swindlers , con artists , bent lawyers , bent accountants , a corrupt and bias legal system , a catastrophically owned MSM and a sundry other creeps and thieves and NZ farmers will do it again .
    My hope is that this time round , there will be a rural Utopia interconnected and interlaced with the cities and so the lambs will frolic , the butterflies with flutter , the fields will be green and the skies will be blue ( And not that Evil Blue neither . )

    Now , I’m going to come down from La La Land and make another coffee .

    Oh by the way ? @ intrinsicvalue . You need to have a wee toke then study yourself in the mirror . Then forgive yourself and come on over and hang with us . In the sunshine . Come out of your damp cave of ignorance and hate . Come in for a cuppa tea and a scone ? C’mon . Sit down and be with humanity .

    • “I think The Governor General has some answering to do ?

      I think he needs to dissolve the Government immediately pending a Royal Commission of Inquiry , it’s become that bad .”

      yes Countryboy. Right on the button!

      opinion.

    • thanks for that…the first article was particularly good ( you can translate by right clicking on the page and choosing ‘translate this page’)….the second article from the Sydney Morning Herald was boring

  13. Serious questions around John Key must be made by MSM as to why the media allowed the Key claim this was a Labour Party conspiracy after all we know now as Key knew then why did he lie to us all when he was advised it came from overseas in may 2013?
    http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/top-level-kiwis-hit-global-adobe-hack-6076397
    Another lie for Royal Commission?
    Digitally-enabled surveillance technologies can be used by both state agencies, and those who wish to hold them to account. The state agencies tend to hold the most power is using those capabilities, but they are not the only ways capable of using sophisticated digital technologies.

    In the light of the hacking of Cameron Slater’s emails by the hacker known as Rawshark, this is an interesting bit of news. [h/t disturbed] Last night One News reported:

    High-ranking and powerful New Zealanders are among the 150 million people hit by last year’s hacking of software company Adobe, ONE News has revealed.

    ONE News has discovered this includes six workers at our spy agency, the GCSB; 75 Defence personnel; 3,200 Government employees including police; and 60 parliamentary staff, among them, Jason Ede – former adviser to John Key – linked to WhaleOil blogger Cameron Slater who had his emails hacked.

    Questions were raised and discounted as to whether Rawshark had got his hacked emails at the same time.

    The Daily blog should make a focus blog on that side of the “Dirty politics” saga? Key tried now to turn it into a smear campaign blaming Labour for it but now we know better don’t we?

    • Yes CleanGreen, we know better.

      The emails and their content exist.

      It is not about the hacking – it is about the content of these emails.

      And they prove that we have a grossly corrupt govt, and the GG should be doing something about this FACT!

      But our govt is sooo corrupt that nothing is being done at all.

      Still, not for much longer.

      The 15th September will be an interesting day. There is the march to parliament – against domestic violence, which ends at the steps of the Beehive at 12.45pm – FJK has declined to meet the marchers to accept the gift of the giant Kate Shepherd statue, but Metiria Turei will be there to accept it. I hope the media cover this. Imagine that – FJK not bothering about such a big issue. He is a disgrace.

      And then in the evening we have Kim.com announcing more of the govt skullduggeries at 7pm.

      Monday 15th will be a very politically interesting day for NZ indeed.

      Opinion.

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