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“When Migrant workers are under attack- stand up, fight back!”

Source: Unite Union – Press Release/Statement:

Headline: “When Migrant workers are under attack- stand up, fight back!”


“When Migrant workers are under attack- stand up, fight back!” echoed through the night air of Auckland’s Balmoral suburb, as the first protest in a Global Day of Action against McDonald’s got underway in New Zealand.

The Balmoral store was built in the face of widespread community opposition with its huge private car park and drive-thru area ruining the historic character of Auckland’s unofficial Chinatown. But the drive-thru was shut down by two picket lines on either entrance, and 70% of customers were persauded by the picket to turn away and dine elsewhere in solidarity with the workers in dispute. cleardot.gif

Unite union activists were joined on the picket line by the Migrant Workers Association, a group that was formed in the battle with Burger King last August, and by Indian KFC workers from the local branch across the road! The KFC store is 100% unionised and prides itself on being a closed shop – the Acting Manager is an Indian union activist and joined the picket, highlighting the difference in pay and conditions between the two chains.

The Unite Union has been leading the McStrike campaign for better day and conditions since Mayday. Unite has unionised over 1500 workers at the 160 McDonald’s stores around the country, many of whom are migrants from India and China.

The claims and opinions made in this statement are those of the release organisation and are not necessarily endorsed by, and are not necessarily those of, The Daily Blog. Also in no event shall The Daily Blog be responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on the above release content.

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Oil slick politics

Source: Greenpeace NZ – Press Release/Statement:

Headline: Oil slick politics

Last week, documents released to the Labour Party revealed that Government Ministers Steven Joyce and Simon Bridges had met with oil giant Shell to thrash out a back-room deal to criminalise protesting at sea.

There’s nothing new here – it’s called crony capitalism and it’s something that the John Key Government does well. It’s his bread and butter. You take a company – in this case New Zealand Inc – and you use it to line the pockets of your mates. 

Yet, it seems that in a desperate attempt to show that the Government is wagging its own tail, Simon Bridges has been caught out misleading Parliament. Originally telling Parliament that he had had no contact with oil companies about the controversial law changes, it has emerged that he had met with Shell just weeks before making his draconian decision.

No details of that secret meeting have so far been released, but at a previous meeting with Government, Shell expressed their concern about offshore protests. Simon Bridges then presented to Cabinet that:  ‘the upstream oil and gas industry has sought a more robust government response to threats of, and actual, direct protest action’. A month later it was passed in to law.

It is typical of how the Government is making laws in New Zealand. We’ve seen it with Sky City and the pokies; Warner Brothers conspired with John Key to rinse the tax payer of tens of millions of dollars and now big oil are getting in on the act.
The hand of big business now holds the pen of our democracy and our Ministers are supplying the ink.

That’s why we’ve demanded that Simon Bridges release all the details of this meeting. The public deserves to know how much influence overseas oil companies have over our law makers.

It is also the only way the public can be sure that he has not lied to them and is acting in the interests of all New Zealanders, not some of the country’s biggest polluters.

The timeline of meeting and events run like this:

  • September 4th 2012: Minister Steven Joyce met with Shell’s New Zealand chair Rob Jager and business advisor Chris Kilby as well as David Robinson from PEPANZ
  • 14th February 2013: Simon Bridges meets with Shell, just two weeks before he takes a Cabinet Paper on the protest changes to Cabinet.
  • March 31st 2013: Announces crack down on protesting at sea
  • April 19th 2013: Denies having any contact with oil companies over the new law changes
  • May 31st 2013: Labour accuses Simon Bridges of misleading Parliament

The claims and opinions made in this statement are those of the release organisation and are not necessarily endorsed by, and are not necessarily those of, The Daily Blog. Also in no event shall The Daily Blog be responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on the above release content.

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Homelessness – The Big Sleepout 2013 Appeal



Hi all

On the 4th July I will be going homeless. For one cold night in the dead of winter I will be stripped of my creature comforts, exposed to the elements and given insight into what it means to sleep rough.

I live in the central city and I have for almost two decades. The homeless problem in central Auckland, has to my eyes steadily increased.

If we don’t bring attention to the poverty that is driving this homelessness, we won’t ever generate the solutions necessary to solve homelessness.

EVERY dollar I fundraise will be directly applied to Lifewise’s unique “no band aids” approach to homelessness. The Lifewise response continues to be Auckland’s most successful answer to the issue of homelessness. So before I bed down on a slab of concrete I’d love to ask if you might sponsor me. Please back me and please back this worthy cause by digging deep today.

Thank you.

Anything you can donate would be amazing.

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The Bad Oil



Deepwater Horizon
Gulf of Mexico, Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion, 20 April 2010


The stats;

Event: Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion & oil spill

Date: 20 April 2010

Human death toll: 11

Animal death toll: unknown

Est. Oil Spilled: 4.9 million barrels of oil

Depth of water: 1,500 metres

Depth of well: 10,680 metres

Time to cap oil spill: 87 days

An international petroleum drilling expert, Stuart Boggan, has advised  an  oil and gas conference in New Plymouth  that capping an oil blow-out, similar to the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, would take two weeks;


Gear to cap oil rig has to be shipped from UK

Acknowledgment – Radio NZ –  Gear to cap oil rig has to be shipped from


Two weeks.

Assuming that a similar disaster occurs here, of the east coast of New Zealand, at the Raukumara Basin – which is deeper than the Gulf of Mexico – how much oil could be released in those two weeks?

A simple bit of math:  4.9 million barrels divided by 87 days equals: 56,322 (approx) barrels per day.

At 56,322 barrels per day, that would see 788,500 barrels over two weeks.

One  barrel of oil is equivalent to  158.9 litres (approx).

788,500 barrels equates to  125,292,650 litres. One hundred and twenty five million litres.

By comparison, the  oil spill from the grounding of the M.V. Rena on 5 October 2011 released 1,800 litres (1,700 tonnes) of heavy fuel oil and a further 213 litres (200 tonnes) * of marine diesel into the sea (see:  Rena ‘worst maritime environmental disaster’);



Acknowledgment – The Guardian – New Zealand oil spill – in pictures


The oil spill affected a coastline from Mt Maunganui to Maketu – and further beyond;


nz_oil_spill_v4_464 coastmap

Acknowledgment – BBC –  Salvage crew returns to New Zealand oil spill ship


It took hundreds of volunteers several weeks and months to clean up a mess caused by “only” 2,013 litres of oil and diesel.

Now imagine the horror of  125 million litres gushing from a deep-sea well at the Raukumara Basin that could be five to six times deeper than the position of the Deepwater Horizon rig.

Remember the the depth of water at the rig was around 1,200 to 1,500 metres.

The Raukumara Basin in some areas extend to over 6,000 metres (6 kilometres) in depth;



Source: Ministry of Economic Development –  Raukumara Basin Fact File [699 kB PDF]


When, on 24 October 2012,  Prime Minister John Key was challenged in Parliament over the safety of deep sea drilling, this was the exchange,

Questions for oral answer

5. Oil and Gas Exploration—Deep-sea Oil-drilling and Environmental Risk

5. Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader—Green) to the Prime Minister: Does he stand by his statement, “We’re not environmental bandits. If we don’t believe drilling can take place in a way that is environmentally sustainable and wouldn’t put at undue risk the environment, we wouldn’t go with it.”; if so, why?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister) : I stand by my full statement, which included that we want to balance our economic opportunities with our environmental responsibilities; because it is true.

Dr Russel Norman: How is deep-sea drilling not putting the environment at undue risk, when just this month Dayne Maxwell of Maritime New Zealand said about the Government’s oil response equipment: “Most of the response equipment that we have is designed for near-shore sheltered conditions, and really there isn’t available internationally any equipment specifically designed to operate in the rough kind of conditions offshore that we have in New Zealand.”?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY: Well, that is one person’s view. I think it is also worth remembering that if somebody gets a permit to go and undertake these activities in the exclusive economic zone, not only would this Government be filling a gap that was previously left open but also there would no doubt be conditions on that. Finally, as I said yesterday, there have been 50,000 wells drilled in the Gulf of Mexico. Is the member arguing that all of those wells were a high risk and should have been closed up?

Dr Russel Norman: How is deep-sea drilling not putting the environment at undue risk, when the head of the Petroleum Exploration and Production Association said in April 2011: “You know, there is no absolute guarantee that disasters won’t happen, and if you had a major catastrophe, it would be just as bad as you have in North America.”—aka Deepwater Horizon?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY: Firstly, I mean, the member asked me yesterday about the head of Anadarko. One of the things he did say to me in the meeting was that there were a lot of learnings that had come out of that situation, and that they can be applied so that those things do not happen again. Secondly, if the member is reflecting on a comment by an individual that basically says there are no guarantees in life, well, actually, that is true, but, on the same basis, the member will never get on a plane again, never get in a car again, never get on a train again, never do a lot of things he does, because the risk is that something very bad can happen.

Dr Russel Norman: How is deep-sea drilling not putting the environment at undue risk when a leak at 2.5 kilometres under water cannot be fixed by divers, and companies are forced to rely on robots and relief rigs, and this is diametrically different from operating in shallow water, like the case in Taranaki, where the deepest production well is only 125 metres deep?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY: All of those issues in mitigation of any risk would have to be considered as part of an application to drill in the exclusive economic zone.

Dr Russel Norman: How is deep-sea drilling not putting the environment at undue risk, given that the Gulf of Mexico disaster was stopped only when a second rig drilled a relief well, and this Government will not require a relief rig to be on site during deep-sea drilling operations in New Zealand?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY: The member is jumping to conclusions. He does not know what conditions will be set. But, in the end, I mean, this is really the fundamental problem, is it not, with the Green Party. What Green members are arguing is that everything contains some risk, so they do not want to do anything, except that they want to give lots and lots of money away, which is why they come up with the only solution that that person could come up with—print it!

Dr Russel Norman: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. That was not a question about the Prime Minister’s former job as a currency speculator. It was about deep-sea oil production. [Interruption]

Mr SPEAKER: Order! Order! I think we will consider it a draw at that point.

Dr Russel Norman: Given that the Prime Minister is putting enormous weight on this new piece of flimsy legislation, the exclusive economic zone Act, how does he think that this particular piece of legislation will plug an oil leak at 2.5 kilometres under water? Does he plan to shove the legislation in the hole? Does he think that might work?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY: I think it is unlikely a couple of bits of paper will work. But let us cut to the chase here. We are a Government that is actually filling a gap that has been missing from our environmental protection. That member has been in the House for how long? And how many members’ bills has he put in about this issue? Oh, that is right—none. What he is focused on is printing money. That is his focus of attention.

Dr Russel Norman: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. My question was not about the Prime Minister’s currency speculation—

Mr SPEAKER: Order! On this occasion I invite the member to reflect on the question he asked. It kind of invited the sort of response he got.

Dr Russel Norman: Why has this Government taken a major anti-environmental turn since the 2011 election; is it because of the rising influence of Steven Joyce and others—environmental bandits within the National Party—who now dominate Cabinet and the Prime Minister?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY: Shock, horror! It is Steven Joyce’s fault. No. It is because this is a Government that wants, in an environmentally sensible and considered way, also to grow the economic opportunities for New Zealanders. That member wants to go down to the West Coast and say it is really bad that people are losing their jobs, potentially, at Spring Creek, while at exactly the same time he is stopping them getting a job down the road. I call that hypocrisy.

Source: Parliament – Hansards

I have re-printed nearly all the text of that exchange to show the reader that,

  • National has no answer to critical safety issues surrounding deep-sea drilling,
  • National is willing to engage in risky commercial behaviour for short term gain,
  • John Key has a cavalier, foolish attitude when it comes to serious issues like this.

In the Radio NZ article above, Stuart Boggan said that deep water drilling is not that complicated and Anadarko has been doing it successfully for 15 years in 15 countries.

Early last year, a  US Federal Judge made  a determination that flatly contradicted  Mr Boggan’s optimism;


Judge Rules BP, Anadarko Liable in Gulf Spill

Acknowledgement: Wall Street Journal – Judge Rules BP, Anadarko Liable in Gulf Spill

Which makes this comment by Energy and Resources Minister, Simon Bridges a dangerous farce,

These obligations include comprehensive environmental assessments, extensive safety case requirements and also detailed oil spill contingency planning.”

Acknowledgement – NZ unprepared for deep water oil spill – Greens

What kind of “comprehensive environmental assessments, extensive safety case requirements and also detailed oil spill contingency planning” can possibly exist  when an industry insider admits that no such safety “assessments”, “requirements”, or “contingency planning” is available should a Gulf of Mexico-style blow-out occur?

John Key, Simon Bridges, and other National ministers are either badly informed or outright lying.

This government is engaged in risky, reckless policies that – if a disaster occurs – could have repercussions that would  dwarf the Rena oil spill.

In fact, Energy Minister Bridges’ only response to this potential crisis has been to criminalise any sea-going protest against deep sea drilling.


Crackdown on drilling protesters

Acknowledgement – TV3 –  Crackdown on drilling protesters


It’s like a bad, bad dream… Except it’s all real.

Truly, the lunatics are in charge of the asylum.

(* Hopefully my math is correct.)




NY Times: Gulf Spill Is the Largest of Its Kind, Scientists Say (2 Aug 2010)

Fairfax Media: Rena ‘worst maritime environmental disaster’ (11 Oct 2011)

Wall Street Journal:  Judge Rules BP, Anadarko Liable in Gulf Spill (22 Feb 2012)

Fairfax  Media: NZ unprepared for deep water oil spill – Greens  (4 March 2013)

TV3:  Crackdown on drilling protesters  (31 March 2013)

Radio NZ: Gear to cap oil rig has to be shipped from UK (6 June 2013)

Previous related blogposts

On the smell of an oily rag (11 Oct 2011)

Petrobras withdraws – sanity prevails (5 Dec 2012)

Mining, Drilling, Arresting, Imprisoning – Simon Bridges (23 May 2013)

Other blogs

The Jackal: Eyewitness account of the Gulf of Mexico disaster



= fs =

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The Daily Blog Watch Thursday 6 June





Today’s Daily Blog Watch Round-Up of matters that have attracted the attention, assessments, and articulations of this country’s leading bloggers…

NZ Left Blogosphere

We kick of with LudditeJourno blogs  about the perils of  Comfortable colonisation,

Meanwhile here in Aotearoa just recently – same root of colonial values, different venue of cultural attack – we’ve had the Air NZ approach to Māori art and images – “if it’s on someone’s arm, it makes you unemployable, if it’s on our plane, it’s a brand“.”

LJ puts a new perspective on cultural imperialism and shows us, really, how ridiculous it really is. Like, really, really ridiculous.

QoT on Ideologically Impure gives her seal of approval to Rino Tirikatene in the Hooooooouse. This was also covered yesterday in Morgan Godfery’s,  Morgan Godfery – Symbolism vs substance: is the Maori Party doing anything.

On Red Alert, Clare Curran shows up yet another of  Key’s brain-fades, and points out that  Actually, John Key you did invite Huawei into NZ.

I’m getting a bit worried about Dear Leader. Has he had a brain MRI recently? For his own health (and that of our country who worships the polished rimu he walks on), he really should get checked out.

And so it begins writes Darien Fenton, with this meme,


That’s right, folks, it’s the Employment Contracts Act, in drag.

Another shitty attack on workers by the Tories.

Tell us, Dear Leader, how is this suppopsed to lift wages???


Phillip Ure on Whoar has sez , ..you can’t blame rachel smalley for any lamearse questions she may ask..blame the shows’ producers..(and does that reason also excuse susan wood..?..and..?..) and critiques interviews by Rachel Smalley on TV3. There’s more on Whoar that Phillip touches on…

On the same issue, Danyl on The Dim Post writes  Hello darkness my old friend and suggests that Smalley has over-stepped the line in asking Hekia Parata “How Maori are you?” and, “Are you a bitch to work for?”.

Tim Selwyn on Tumeke sez it’s  Dunne over for Non-Leader of the Non-Party, “United Future” – and it’s one of the more flowery of eulogies that I’ve read/heard. With the walk-out of Winston Peters; his Real Party; and Trevor Mallard – things are hotting up in Parliament.

A small victory for decency has been won by Russel Norman, who writes on Frogblog that the  National Provident Fund has divested from cluster munitions. About bloody time. What a nasty, disgusting industry to invest in. No doubt Right Wingers will be up in arms – but until those pricks experience their children blown to bits by cluster munitions, they can STFU.

Well done, Russel! Chur, bro’!

Meanwhile, Scott Yorke at Imperator Fish is in feigned Solidarity! with the walkout from Parliament…

And on the issue of Peter “me-Myself-and-I” Dunne, Scott gives us the latest low-down and  Transcript of Leader’s Keynote Speech: United Future Party Annual ConferenceUnfortunately, Dunne’s venue isn’t quite in a Tardis-style…

Scott also announces the creation of a more serious blog – “Manufactured Outrage“.  His first blogpost looks at Judith “Crush-Kill-Democracy!” Collins’ increasing censorship laws in this country. Check out  The law and order steam-roller.

By the way, in’it strange how the Tories are increasing state power; police surveillance; data exchange between departments; internet “copyright protection”; and now strengthening censorship laws – and we don’t hear Jack Shit from the neo-lib, libertarian,  small-government types. Wadupwidat?

No Right Turn’s Idiot Savant describes Question Time in the House today as  A farce, and questions where The Speaker has been getting his “advice” from. Savant reckons it’s Gerry “Hullo Pork Pie” Brownlee. I reckon it’s a weetbix packet.

If you can’t cap it, don’t drill it, sez Savant, in regard to Anadarko about to start drilling of the East Coast in a couple of weeks.  A recent disclosure reveals it would take two weeks  – TWO WEEKS!!!  – for equipment to get to NZ in the event of a massive oil blow-out, like the one in the Gulf of Mexico.

Incredible! And Minister Simon Bridges is permitting this!

(More on this issue tomorrow, in the Daily Blog.)

Not much love being shown by Savant; Good riddance to Ross Robertson. Robertson is evidently standing in local body elections. Methinks he may’ve lost the gay/lesbian/liberal vote? Yeah, he has.

Savant accuses the IMF of Economic malpractice. Find out why. And will anyone go to jail for it?

Is the USA the  Land of the free? And how does the growth of a Totalitarian Police Surveillance state affect us? ‘Cos, bro, it certainly does!

An interesting blogpost on the Auckland Transport Blog about Who should pay for grade separation? Matt L blogs about how/why/who of building new train stops along rail lines. Trust me – it’s actually more interesting than it sounds (sorry, Matt, for not doing your piece real justice).

Socialist Aotearoa scores a Big Win for human rights and workers in Third World nations,  The rage after Rana Plaza – Kmart you’re next! It’s amazing what a bit of publicity will do for workers’ rights!

Brilliant stuff on The Jackal, tonight.

First up, Jackal has been endeavouring to find out via the OIA what the M.V. Rena was carrying when it grounded on the Astrolabe Reef. Unfortunately, the Rena will hold her secrets, as even Ombudsman stated in a letter.

Nevertheless, the  Jackal may have made an astounding discovery.

Read the full story – this is what true blogging and citizen journalism is about, folks.

Also read why Jackal sez  Don’t donate to a bad cause.

And on The Standard,

  • You can be a leader of nothing! Yep, according to the Speaker of  The House,  you can be the Leader of a Party even if it’s the Party you have when you’re not having a Party… Clayton’s time!

Does this bring Parliament further into disrepute?

Nah, Parliament hit rock bottom years ago. This is just a bit of fun-filled rollicking in the mud…

  • The policing of women’s bodies, writes  etiria Turei in the House.
  • Is it Slums for Auckland? asks 
  • Helen Kelly writes an Ode to Phil Twyford. The Nats are threatening to turf three thousand State House tenants out of their homes, and Helen makes the point,“I thought his best point was that only this Government could announce a housing affordability policy with the eviction of 3000 state housing tenants as its centre piece! .”


The Civilian announces why  Rachel Smalley is in hot water after asking Gerry Brownlee whether he’s a cunt. More of a rhetoical question, really…


On The Daily Blog

Why the wider media can’t see Key as Muldoon either – writes Martyn Bradbury,

The media pundits so quick to laugh and mock Russel Norman never see the side of Key he is exposing. The calculating divisiveness of Key is the exact same format as Muldoon but because it’s aimed at a sector the pundits never engage with, they see nothing, they hear nothing, they speak nothing.

There’s more than one way to skin a possum… or divide a society.

Key is simply more subtle, cheery, and casual the way he goes about it.

A brief, contextualised history of sex ed – another brilliant piece by Queen Of Thorns,

Once upon a time, sex education – when it was provided at all, which wasn’t a given – was a simple biology lesson, which assumed that all people identified with the gender which corresponded to their genitalia, which were in the standard configuration.

A clever insight into sex education and the perceptions that we have about sexuality. Definitely “more than Tab A entering Slot B to produce Baby C“…

National no mates – by  The Jackal,

Depending on how this all plays out, National could be a very lonely party on the opposition benches after the next election. Even with the faux support of other centre right parties, the Natz are unlikely to win the next election.

Why the Nats are in panic mode; why they’re hanging onto to Parasitic Lifeforms (Alien Species Banksie and Dunneboy); and why slimeballs like Farrar and Slater are attacking well known bloggers like Martyn Bradbury.

The House of  National is imploding.  Pictures at 11.

Impractical and Undesirable: How New Zealanders were taught to despise public housing by Chris Trotter, who writes,

The theory behind Labour’s housing programme of the late-1930s was simple. Stop thinking of residential property as some sort of cultural fetish and think of it, instead, as a human right. Writing about the First Labour Government’s approach in 1949, Colin Firth and Gordon Wilson, the authors of State Housing in New Zealand, observed:

“Housing was to become a Public Utility, the right to live in a decent dwelling being regarded as on the same level as the right to education, sanitation, to good and abundant water, to an adequate road system and to a certain amount of medical care. Probably it would be true to say that this premise has now gained fairly wide acceptance.”

You’ll have to read more to get Chris’ point. As always, well worth it for his insights.

5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning & Peter Godfrey On A Battle for NZ’s Political
Centre    by  Selwyn Manning,

Across The Ditch: This week Selwyn Manning & Peter Godfrey talk about the battle for NZ’s Political Centre now that Winston Peters has United Future’s Peter Dunne in his sights.

Like Citizen  A – this is must see/hear! You won’t get this on MSM (except maybe on Native Affairs on Maori TV)

And speaking of which,
TV Review: Native Affairs by  Martyn Bradbury,

Respects to Native Affairs and Mihingarangi Forbes for setting such an
incredibly high standard of questions. Standing ovation stuff. If I was in
charge of the hate crime against public broadcasting that is Seven Sharp, I
would strap all 3 hosts into chairs and force them to watch Native Affairs on
loop for a month.

‘Tis true, boys and girls. Native Affairs treats the viewer like an adult. How refreshing.


Blogpost of the Day

Check out Julie’s post on The Hand MirrorBeing on the ballot with blokes. Not only does Julie look at the myriad facets of being an elected representative – but also looks at the realities of why women don’t stand for public office as much as men.

It’s a hell of an insight, and one that really affects us all, if we want a fuunctioning, fair democracy.


Action of the Week

Our clean green delusion:
New Zealand’s untold environmental reality

Who: Mike Joy
What: Guest speaker, EHEA AGM
When: Monday, June 10, 8PM
Where: St Albans Church Hall, Eastbourne (Lower Hutt)
Mike is speaking as a guest of the East Harbour Environmental Association at their annual general meeting. He will give the facts on New Zealand’s stark environmental and biodiversity reality – the facts that are hidden from most New Zealanders.  He will discuss the reasons for this and what the declines will cost us if we don’t change.   Finally, he addresses the solutions – what we all can do help.

Dr Mike Joy is a Senior Lecturer in Ecology and Environmental Science at the Ecology group-Institute of Natural Resources Massey University Palmerston North.  He is an outspoken advocate for environmental protection in New Zealand and has received a number of awards including “ecology in action” award from the NZ ecological Society, and an “old blue” award from the Royal Forest and Bird protection Society, environmental New Zealander of the year from North and South magazine and this year he was voted person of the year by the Manawatu Evening Standard.


Right Wing Nuttery of the Day

All of them.

Though Farrar’s devious dishonest blogpost of Martyn Bradbury was perhaps the slimiest.

Is that Farrar’s new Low Standard?  One thing DPF may have forgotten; if you throw shit – some of it sticks on you.


Thought for the Day

help me understand this


~ Joe Blogger

“The Daily Blog Watch” Editor, Imbiber of Fine Sugary Drinks,  & Moa Whisperer



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How to stop the rich thieving off us


Screen Shot 2013-06-02 at 6.30.07 AM

I get sick of reading how the rich continually steal money from the people and hardly ever get punished for it.

Just this week the NZ Herald reported that “Two-thirds of New Zealand’s richest people are not paying the top personal tax rate, with increasingly complex overseas schemes and bank accounts being used to evade the taxman.”

“Inland Revenue has found that 107 out of 161 “high-wealth individuals” who own or control more than $50 million worth of assets declared their personal income in the last financial year was less than $70,000 – the starting point for the top tax bracket of 33 cents in the dollar.

“The multimillionaires used a variety of 6,800 tax-planning devices – such as companies, trusts and overseas bank accounts – to avoid paying tax. One had a network of 197 entities.”

A few years ago the banks were caught using various schemas to avoid tax. They owed something like $2.75 billion – not including all the penalties that should have been imposed on them just as they are by the IRD on small businesses and the self employed. But the big brave IRD allowed the banks to only pay $2.2 billion or 80% of what was owed in a deal to avoid further legal battles.

The banks had been found guilty in the High Court. Instead of throwing the directors of all the big banks in jail for the massive fraud and theft off the public they had perpetrated – as well as fining them a multiple of what they had defrauded – they were allowed to negotiate to pay only 80% of what was owed. During the trials of the banks emails were revealed that showed the banks first decided what tax they would pay and then simply cooked the books to suit their decision.

Could you imagine a bank robber telling a judge that he would be happy to pay back 80% of what he stole in return for dropping all charges against him?

Could you imagine the solo mum facing a NZ judge over living with a partner and collecting the benefit saying: “Excuse me Mr Judge, would it be all right if I paid back 80% of what I received in return for a discharge without conviction.” Could you imagine the howls of anger from the moral law and order brigade.
Working people and beneficiaries can’t avoid tax. We pay it up front. If we have paid too much we have to ask for a bit back at the end of the year.

There is a simple way top stop the tax cheats. We should make everyone pay tax on every bit of their income. This should include capital gains, inheritance, dividend income and so on. If the rich think they should be on a lower rate they should apply to the IRD for a refund and explain why.

Anyone with assets in excess of a certain amount – say $5 million – should be assumed to be earning income from those assets at a going rate of say 20% and taxed on all estimated earnings accordingly. At the moment according to the June 1 NZ Herald article most people with $50 million in assets claims not to earn more than $70,000 a year.

Tax lawyers and accountants who advise their clients on ways to avoid tax should share the legal liability of going to jail if they are judged to have cheated the system.

We could eliminate the cheats by saying no one can use a tax strategy to avoid the highest marginal rate unless it has been pre-approved by the IRD.

There should be mandatory jail terms for tax avoidance in excess of say $100,000.

Tax lawyers and accountants who advise their clients on ways to avoid tax should share the legal liability of going to jail if they are judged to have cheated the system.

Banks should have a special tax applied to them for abusing the system for so many years that their tax rate should be increased to at least 50% on all profits. The IRD should have the power to look at their books and impose an estimated withholding tax during the year and the banks can ask for a refund and explain why if they think they paid too much.

All of that is simple to do actually. All you need is the will. No one does anything because all the politicians, lawyers, accountants are part of the same gang and have the system designed to serve their interests. They write the laws to make sure that almost no-one goes to jail for crimes they commit as company directors and so on. 29 miners are killed and no one is in jail. Billions of dollars were defrauded by finance companies and almost no one was even prosecuted let alone jailed. The banks defraud us all and are rewarded rather than punished for their crime. The police, courts and prison system is to keep the rest of us in line.

Tinkering with the system won’t change things fundamentally. Real change requires a radical challenge to all that exists.

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Citizen A with Colin Craig & Dr Wayne Hope


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Face TV listings Friday 7th June


face small

8.00 In Focus
8.45 Classic serial
9.00 Bloomberg TV
10.00 Ideas in Action
10.30 Sustainable Futures
11.00 euronews

12.00pm Citizen A
12.30 Baha’i on Air
1.00 Korean News
1.30 euronews
2.00 NHK Newsline
2.30 Chilean news
3.00 German news
3.30 French news
4.00 Dutch news
4.30 Tokyo Eye
5.00 Euromaxx
5.30 DW Journal
6.00 Aljazeera News
7.00 Fishin’ Trip
7.30 Drive it
8.00 On2Wheels
8.30 4WD TV
9.00 Australia News
9.30 The Untouchables [AO]
10.30 Democracy Now News Hour
11.30 Shintaro: Samurai [PG]

Face TV broadcasts on Sky 83 & Auckland UHF

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Social Commentary: Returning to NZ – Our identity – Brand Mika – Brand Maori



NYC, Paris, London, Ponsonby. Nah doesn’t sound right does it?
AUCKLAND is her own city. Embracing difference would give her an edge. Sadly in my travels I’ve discovered that many countries have hot thermal pools, majestic mountains, pristine lakes, lush natural forests, and what more we aren’t the only ones marketing these.
I have felt for a long time that one of our vital points of difference is relative safety and the fact that as a whole NZer’s are pretty hospitable. Our service is crap, yet we are a pretty good bunch. Now saying we are crap is not derogatory – its true, even at a 5 star resort in NZ you might come across this scenario
YOU: “Can I have a glass of water”
SERVICE PERSON: “yea its over there in the jug 45m away” Rather than the service person actually going over to get the water for you, they nicely tell you where to go get your water. That’s not a bad thing, we are a small country – Sydney is bigger in population than our whole country.
So being small makes us more chilled, relaxed, easy going. How many times when a tourist has their stuff stolen does it make headline news and we (as a collective nation) go buy them new stuff.
I want to write about NZ on global scale. We aren’t isolated anymore and people know more about us than we do before they arrive – thanks to the joys of the internet.
NZ emulating what Canada, America, Australia, UK have in architecture; shopping malls and street names doesn’t make us a unique destination.
We aren’t cheap either – no we are not.
More Maori themed buildings – Hawaii, Thailand, Tokyo even NYC have their unique stamp on who they are.
So who are we?
Come on NZ who are we?
I have heard time and time again its Maori. On one hand yes it is. However its also who we are as a people. My Pakeha sister runs a nice café in South Canterbury just south of Timaru STABLES café and bar. She doesn’t say “Kia ora” however she does greet people with the south island hospitality that we know as being part NZ.
Personally I find much of the ‘institutionalized” cultural welcomes overseas a little cringe worthy and designed for the tourist experience. Many travellers are looking for the REAL travel experience and we have it. Culture is now a brand and I am the first to recognize that people will exploit anything at any time to make a buck. I was once part of the group of Māori trying to stop Maori things being exploited. However now I see a better picture. Māori making money and having an ownership of things Māori is the way to go. Once we recite your hapu, iwi, whanau karakia and ‘stream’ it, we have given it away. Theres virtually no way to stop the beat or moko design ending up on Jean Paul Gaultier’s fashion runway or an Italian Car advert. So I developed a clever plan over a decade ago that works wonders – Brand Mika where I write, design, create 100% and OWN original haka, music, scripts, clothing, jewelry design and more that I gain a royalty from every time its used or sold. I recently heard someone speak unkindly of a pop group I made saying they were not good models for Maori (these guys are hot, fit, athletic and sexy as F%%%). Saying what they were doing wasn’t tikanga. I couldn’t help but say:
“Atlast I meet the person who can speak for ALL Maori”
They looked shocked – an ignorant shock I might add. I continued “You do not own anything Maori unless its copyrighted, so take a chill pill, get to the gym, eat healthier and get over your idea that your opinion is relevant to these guys”
That 1% of Maori who think they are the ‘holders’ of tradition – have to stop being ‘blow hards’ and get on with helping future generations rather than continually alienating rangatahi from their own culture…
Yep Maori culture is for sale – and as long as NZ benefits I’m happy.

Strive to be the best you can be, with out destroying others dreams

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Is ‘Spot’ A Double-Dipper? Surely Not!


Ross Robertson Assistant Speaker

If one day can be a long time in politics, what do you make of 26 years! An old adage comes to mind: Every dog has its day.

On Thursday, after 26 years representing south Auckland as a Labour Party MP, Ross ‘Spot’ Robertson said he will exit Parliament at the 2014 General Election.

For politicians, dignified exits are as rare as hen’s teeth. Wisdom would suggest, that when a politician of some vintage is presented with such an opportunity then she or he should grasp it with both hands and be seen to do the honorable thing. The benefits of preserving a reputation and legacy outweigh the early cessation of income.

So it seems a strange thing indeed for Ross Robertson to reveal he plans to double-dip: remain an MP while campaigning for, and presumably winning, local office.

The question remains unanswered: Ross, Why? Why wait?

On announcing to reporters his intention to bow out of Parliamentary politics, Robertson said his intention is now to campaign for the Otara-Papatoetoe local board in the Local Government elections in September-October this year.

RossRobertson-WikipediaRobertson said, if he wins a seat on the local board, he will “donate any money” he makes as a board member to a local south Auckland school – that is until he finally resigns from Parliament at the 2014 General Election.

But surely the people of Manukau East deserve better than this.

Surely they deserve to have a representative in Parliament whose political ambition, and intention, is progressive as opposed to regressive; a representative who is hungry to push and pursue the very best outcomes on any issue for the betterment of his constituencies, his electorate, his people, those who voted for him to represent their interests.

There is sense in the proposition that an MP who has his eye on another political prize should do the right thing and make room for another who is hungry to drive ahead with solutions to challenges that impact on an electorate’s peoples.

Surely Robertson should resign from Parliament… at the very least once local Government campaigning begins. After all Robertson himself said: “It is not possible to be on a local board and be an MP…”

Through his own logic Robertson has rightly stated to hold office in two courts – Parliament and local Government – is incompatible.

What good reasons exist to justify Robertson remaining?

    1. Another by-election campaign will run-down Labour’s campaign fighting fund?
    2. Robertson needs insurance, that should he not win a local board seat then at least he has Parliament?
    3. Robertson needs the money?
    4. Robertson is finding it difficult to disattach from his 26 year routine?

Regarding points 2 to 4 the answer is no. Robertson has shown himself to be an honorable member of Parliament without having ever ascended to ministerial status.

Robertson’s performance as an assistant Speaker (for 12 successive years) has been not only admirable, but he also has acquired a high well-earned respect from members of Parliament of all political persuasions.

Robertson has achieved a reliable reputation. His engagement with members, when greeting them in a host of languages heard spoken on the streets of his electorate, is a delight. All this presents a legacy well earned and a reputation worth holding on to. So why does he risk eroding all this by double-dipping? It just does not make sense.

Perhaps Robertson is standing in the firing line, potentially taking a reputation-damaging bullet so Labour can avoid a by-election, that it would win, and save the party some coin. If that is so, then he or the party should say so.

But as Robertson told journalists on Thursday: “It is time to have a new MP for Manukau East. I think I can be more effective in local Government.” Adding: “It is not possible to be on a local board and be an MP, so I will retire from Parliament.”

If I can be so bold, let me speak directly: Ross, now is the time. Bow out with dignity. Resign with honor, with your head held high. Local boards do need politicians with vast experience. The challenges in our communities are huge, sometimes they seem insurmountable. If your community needs you, it needs you now, close by, with your eye on the ball, with a zest that once gained you the affectionate handle ‘Spot’ (the dog) all those years ago.

As you said yourself: “We need effective local representation to protect our neighborhoods.” On Thursday you said local issues had become more important than national politics, but that you had loved being an MP for Papatoetoe.

You said: “I have raised my family here and my grandchildren now go to school here.

“The people of Manukau East have been good to me and have given me one of the biggest majorities in Parliament. For the last 12 years, successive parliaments have elected me to be one of the Speakers.”

At the very least, as a gesture of thanks back to your people, Ross you should donate your Parliamentary salary to a local south Auckland school – rather than : donate any money you make from being on a local board to a local school… until the next election.

Certainly, south Auckland’s Manukau East LEC has a list of impressive potential candidates who are seeking selection, who are hungry and match fit for political representation.

They are eager to drive ahead progressive solutions for the region’s peoples. Candidates like Efeso Collins and others are ready and waiting to serve their country. Labour, now it is time to make it so. You will likely be rewarded for it.

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