Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Go the Hammers!

This is great news. I remember the glory days of West Ham with Trevor Brooking etc. I'm just so glad they beat Preston North End. Sorry all PNE fans, just can't see you playing Arsenal or Chelsea in the premiership. The Hammers have the history and there's nothing like the 'ole East End Upton Park for a decent footy game and back to the pubs Jack the Ripper used to drink in later! Fantastic to see you back, but you'll still lose to Arsenal next season :)

Bangladesh & Cricket

These two words don't really belong together. Can't disagree with this.

Schapelle Corby

I have not yet commented anywhere on Schapelle Corby. I didn't really subscribe to the media hype over someone who doesn't live here and on an event happening in a different country to both hers and ours. But I've just read this and feel compelled to add this short post.

One thing I've have picked up from the coverage is how unfair the Indonesian system is and how they shouldn't be asking her to prove her innocence. I can't help but pick up vibes from the blogs and the media that Indonesia shouldn't have that system, as if it is our business!

Indonesia is not New Zealand. It's a sovereign state and as far as I'm concerned they can have any system they like. In my view, it's not for us to impose our 'better' system on them.

I'm also not passing any comment on her guilt or innocence. I wasn't there. Some believe this, some believe that and fair enough. I am ambivalent to her case.

Finally, our system is not perfect. Would Indonesians be bothered about David Doughty?

Monday, May 30, 2005

Budget add-on?

Is the Cullender able to add this to his surplus?

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Sports funding

As a liberal type, I tended to view the smokefree legislation as draconian. Yet, I did manage to see both sides of the argument. I don't smoke, but feel I should have been allowed to (if I did) when having a Killkenny. The bar managers can make the rules banning me if they like.

In today's SST (can't link it) there is a story on sports trusts funding being considerably reduced as a result of a fall in revenue from pokie machines. The reason there has been a fall in revenue is because there has been less smokers hanging out in the pokie bars, cos they can't.

Now I find this very ironic. Presumably the government wanted a fit and healthy society so it bans smoking in bars. Yet the causative effect of this, as just discovered, is that there is reduced funding available to amateur sport clubs. I know that an active and fit New Zealand means a lower health budget. And if there is less money for sports teams there will be fewer members, less sport and more health worries. So I am actually wondering what the point of this legislation is/was?
I'd rather have the smokers money in sports clubs coffers than not.

Ahmed bloody Zaoui

I am sick and tired of this guy taking up the front page of our newspapers. Personally, I think he should have been shown the first plane out of here. I don't trust him at all and I don't want him here.
That there are no other stories worthy of the front page of the SST says as much for that paper as it does for journalistic talent to scout out a story. I mean, who cares if the SIS knocked on a few doors and asked questions? The Police do it every day with thousands of people. Is Zaoui above the law? And as for the SST having 'statements' from 'refugees' about them being intimidated and afraid, well excuse me. They have come from bloody Algeria. If they were scared of our SIS then it doesn't say much for the 'brutal' regime they came from, does it!

Who is going to win?

1) The Amazing Race.
2) Dancing with the Stars.
3) Superstars of Treasure Island.

I say, Rob & Amber, Norm Hewitt and his partner and, um, dunno on 3. Quite tough. Maybe Sean O'Brien the Irishman.

More ACT selections

I finished yesterday by saying I wouldn't be posting live. I saw Rodney with his laptop out just after lunch and here is the result.
A great but long day. Got to feel sorry for the Board members and campaign managers who have been to the length and breadth of the country during the weekend interviewing and listening to speeches. One thing is for sure (no two): 1) ACT has the best campaign strategists, candidates and MP's & 2) every volunteer who assists in politics deserves daily chocolote fish. There are some tireless workers out there, no more so than in ACT. As Rodney said today, we have the best people, no doubt.
The list comes out in two weeks. It's all go from here. Look for ACT to have (once again) the best campaign with the best candidates (including me?).

Saturday, May 28, 2005

ACT presentation

Rodney has posted on ACT's outstanding South Island and Lower North Island candidates and the selection process. I will be at the Auckland selection tomorrow and will post on it tomorrow night. Can't do a Bhatnagar and post live unfortunately.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Jordan Carter's selective memory/posting

This is from Jordan's blog on 25 May from the OECD report:

Tax Cuts = Higher Interest Rates: OECD

"Economic growth has been running ahead of potential..."

"WIth the pace of activity now slowing, the recent monetary tightening should be sufficient to limit inflation, given the appreciation of the exchange rate. But additional fiscal stimulus beyond that already planned could put the projected soft landing at risk and would need to be offset by higher interest rates in order to bring the economy back onto a sustainable growth path."

Jordan then said this when commenting on National's tax cut promise, and ACT's I presume:

'It is the height of economic ignorance to contend that a massive spending increase (which is what tax cuts are, just as sure as a massive benefit increase would be) won't affect inflation and interest rates. Inflation will go up, and interest rates will go up as a result. So the dollar will go higher, hurting the current account deficit and exporting businesses even more than the current high levels are doing.'

This is what the Herald reported/quoted from the OECD report:

"The OECD said the seven interest rate hikes since the start of last year should be enough to return the economy to a more sustainable path and give the Reserve Bank room to start easing rates slowly during next year.

However, its task has been complicated by the fiscal stimulus that has come from additional Government spending in 2004 and 2005. Any further relaxation of fiscal policy would need to be offset by higher interest rates."

Will Jordan/Labour accept blame for the 7! interest rate hikes caused by the Labour government's spending?

Consider the above quote carefully...'its task has been complicated by the fiscal stimulus that has come from additional Government spending in 2004 and 2005.'

Makes you wonder aye!

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

How to afford the tax cuts.

Here is one way, or at least a good start. Thanks Paul.

Cullender's quotes

The Cullender said of National's planned tax cuts that "we (labour) have got them on toast".

Today, he said Labour will 'nail ACT to the wall' over theirs.

What will he say in October when he is in opposition?

Flip Flop

The Government has flip-flopped on Groser. Does Helen Clark make the announced flip-flop? No. It is left to 'a spokesperson'. She is pathetic.

Who is lying?

Who is lying in the government, Ann Hartley or Steve Maharey?

In today's Herald, under the headline "Labour on attack over Budget tax move' the government (presumably via Maharey) says this concerning working for families:

"Nearly 200,000 families have gained an average of $28 a week in family assistance from Working for Families increases last month, says the Government."

Yet, the Labour party on the North Shore has been advertising in the local rag that families are "on average, $100 per week better off" thanks to Working for Families.

Who is lying? More smarmy bullshit from the socialists.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

IMG

Many years ago Mark McCormack founded IMG (international management group). It is now the largest sports management and promotion company in the world. It is a veritable who's who of international sport. In New Zealand it runs the NZ Golf Open, the Ironman in Taupo, the V8's, amongst others. It manages Greg Norman, Tiger Woods etc.

It has until recently had an office in Newmarket, Auckland. It no longer exists. Why? Because the company feels it can run its NZ operations better from Australia. Its staff have had to find other employment. The one thing that would have kept the office here was the street race, Auckland or Wellington. We all know what happened to that.

The repercussions of losing the V8 street race are starting to hit home, as is the repercussions of the RMA. This legislation needs an urgent overhaul.

Last one out of NZ turn out the lights please.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Scott Watson

It is a trendy facet of TV nowadays to conduct investigations into investigations. David Bain was a few weeks ago. Mark Lundy is no doubt being prepared. Tonight on 'Close Up @ 7' was the first part of an 'investigation' into Scott Watson and why he might be innocent.

It started with this hilarious quote:

"This from investigative reporter so and so."


Investigative reporter on Close Up? Never.

The reporter spoke with some witnesses who saw some ketch with Olivia Hope on it some days after they left the Sounds. Don't worry the witnesses never knew Olivia: they had only seen her on TV!

Oh there was a witness who knew Olivia from school and supposedly saw her and spoke with her after Watson killed her. But her evidence was tested in Court, as was the first witness. The Jury heard the evidence. They weighed it and decided not to accept it.

The bizarre thing is that it's not like this was new information. It's all been tested in Court. There is supposed to be more on this tomorrow night. I'll wait and see what it is. Suffice to say I get a little sick and tired of campaigns by the media when they have nothing else to do.

What next? A documentary on the Peter Doone affair and how Helen Clark orchestrated the removal of our top cop? Never.

Journalism?

I watch Paul Holmes on Prime because I try to watch as little as possible of the propaganda channel. And Campbell on 3 is very annoying. But tonight I question the future of Holmes' current affairs show.

There was a story on a man called Payne who was complaining about the Family Court and how nine years after he had an agreement with his wife over relationship property division the Court is yet to carry it through by an order transfering the family home to his name.

The problem is we never got to hear why the Court hasn't made the order. I was waiting for this punchline. You know, what the Court said about why he can't get the house after he has paid the money. What the issues are. Yet all we got was him blabbing on about how the Judges are corrupt blah blah blah. Then the story ended. AAARRGGHHHH!

It was terribly poor, amateurish and almost seemed rushed. Holmes will have to do better to keep me as a viewer.

Left wing jealousy

Stephen Thomas Cooper on Philosophically Made had this to say about Tim Groser. It is the most positive comment I have seen from the left:

Our Parliamentry democracy rests on the ideals of freedom of expression. While it is clearly inappropriate for some proffesions, such as the Military, to become political, we should not preclude talented NZ'ers from expressing their views or standing for political office.

And so Tim Groser is the National Party's star list candidate.

While he has been stood down as NZ's WTO Ambassador, in accordance with the Electoral Act, to call it betrayal is being unfair.

Good to know that the National party is at least trying to get on board people with actual talents, rather than trying to rehash the leftovers of the 90's for a Cabinet.


Then Oliver chimed in with this:

The pig was talking in the paper about how he's apparently going to be starving because he's not recieving a salary for a few months. Poor Groser, with his pin-stripe suit and designer sunglasses, he's clearly on the breadline eh guys ? :(


Absolutely no need to refer to Groser as a pig. As I said on STC's blog, takes one to know one aye Oliver.

Marshall's Big Mouth

Justin Marshall opened his big mouth to c he make himself unavalianle for theriticise Graham Henry and suggest that there were communication problems from the coaching staff, and that he wasn't informed before the Tour that he was being rested. This outburst came just before he found out that Henry wanted a meeting with him to discuss the Lions tour. This mouthing off has been a huge part of the All Blacks in this era of Proffesionalism, I say quit complaining you just end up shooting yourself in the foot. And anyway Marshall is leaving I dont think he should be in the team anyway.

Scare tactics

It has become evident since the Budget (nothing was evident in the Budget) that the government's plan is to 'scare' voters via the tax cuts issue. They will say "You can vote for Labour and be sure of proper Health, Education...etc or you can vote National/Act and return to the 'dark days' of tax cuts, public service cuts, beneficiary cuts blah blah blah.. ".

The question the voters should ask themselves is this: Do they have confidence in the ex governer of the Reserve Bank, a man who presided over floating mortgage interest rates reducing from 15% to 7% during his reign? Do they think two economists know what they are doing (Hide and Key)? Let's not forget John Tamihere described Key as 'very smart' and Tamihere said he could easily sleep at night knowing 'Key was in charge'.

Or would they rather trust a left-wing teacher/historian? A man with no deputy.

The answers are obvious.

UPDATE: I was on the button. This from Jordan today:

"what do people want? Higher interest rates and Muldoonist borrowing? Or higher social spending while saving for the future"?

Jordan - what are interest rates now? Who is doing the saving? Not us, it's the bloody gummint!

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Benson-Pope

Once again our pathetic weekend papers write garbage. I have just said I subscribe to the SST only because I want a weekend paper at home and I wouldn't use the Herald in my fireplace.

On the subject of Benson-Pope the reporter chooses to use quotes from people discussing corporal punisment as acceptable at the time.

Charmaine Pountney, former Auckland Girls' Grammar principal and member of the anti-corporal punishment group Campaign Against Violence in Education, said it was inappropriate for teachers to be charged now with something that was legal then. "You can't wind the law back."

In one paragraph the reporter mentions an unnamed (and thus unverifiable) study saying 98% of families 'used it':

Physical discipline was habitual in families at the time - one study showed that 98% of families used it, she said. By the early 1980s, many teachers had abandoned corporal punishment, and parents were questioning its use.


As AL points out at Sir Hiumphrey's, what possible relevance has an unnamed study of corporal punishment got to do with the allegations of serious abuse levelled at Benson-Pope?

You know, if it was all okey dokey why didn't DBP just say that in the House?

Hat tip: SirHumphrey's.

UPDATE: My wife has just pointed out I said I was having the weekend off. Can't help myself :).

Weekend off

No posts this weekend. Here's why.

I don't read the Saturday Herald. I refuse to. I get the paper at work and read it there during the week (reluctantly) but will never spend $$$ on it at the weekend. I despise some of the contributors and the general left slant. I could read online, but Saturday's are full on for me.

The Sunday Star Times. I subscribe to this, only because I think we have to have a weekend paper to peruse. I've always liked the paper, but it too has serious bias issues. Finlay MacDonald needs a slap, and Hubbard and Hagar are a joke. Today, it didn't really have much in it to lead me to blog.

I used to read the NBR weekly and must commence that again and start blogging from that.

Overseas papers. I read the occasional Independent from London, but not this weekend.

The things I did like this weekend were Arsenal totally outplayng Man Me and winning the FA Cup (yay!); and the retirement of two top coaches, Duncan Laing (of Danyon Loader fame) and Lois Muir, netball. They have given a combined 70 years! coaching youngsters. They have given untold spare time and effort. Hats off to them. They are true legends.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Semi-Final Tonight

Well its the day of the game, and no suprises the Hurricanes have been almost written off, their record against the Crusaders isn't good enough, the Crusaders are unbeatable at home and so on. this is disappointing for me as I believe the Hurricanes can actually do it this year and should not be written off. As we have been told 'Expect the Unexpected' This is the most true statement of the Hurricanes as a team, they can be brilliant one week and absolutely shocking the next. It is no suprise for their fans to live through this rollercoaster, but the Canes still have the most loyal fan base in the country. The Chances tonight look slim, but in my opinion its not over til the Fat Lady sings....Hopefully they don't have the National Anthem before the game :P

Differentiation

We frequently hear from commentators how NZ has to differentiate and be innovative so as to attract foreign investment, migrants etc. We hear that because of our geographic location, we must provide incentives for people to invest here, and also visit here. We can't just rely on being like everywhere else.

Paul Holmes muttered this very comment on his radio show this morning when talking to Wendyl Nissen and Tau Henare. Where's the differentiation he asked? Australia has lowered taxes. Where's our competitive advantage to match this.

Well Paul, yesterday we differentiated ourselves.

Whilst almost all of the prior centrally planned economies of Europe are adopting flat taxes; whilst the breakaway Russian states are doing the same; whilst Australia has just provided tax relief, whilst all these countries, and more, are looking to decrease the tax burden on their citizens and businesses we are differentiating ourselves. We are not reducing our taxes. Rather, it could be argued we are raising ours. We are remaining a high tax country. There is our differentiation.

Maybe the Cullender knows more than the combined talents of the ministers responsible for the low tax regimes mentioned above?

(K)new words?

The Washington Post's Mensa Invitational once again asked readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition.

Here are this year's winners:

1. Intaxication: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.
2. Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly.
3. Bozone (n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.
4. Foreploy: Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid.
5. Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period.
6. Giraffiti: Vandalism spray-painted very, very high.
7. Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.
8. Inoculatte: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.
9. Hipatitis: Terminal coolness.
10. Osteopornosis: A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)
11. Karmageddon: It's like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's like, a serious bummer.
12. Decafalon (n.): The gruelling event of getting through the day consuming only things that is good for you
13. Glibido: All talk and no action.
14. Dopeler effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.
15. Arachnoleptic fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.
16. Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.
17. Caterpallor (n.): The colour you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating.

And the pick of the literature:

18. Ignoranus: A person who's both stupid and an.....

Who wears the pants in your house?

Jack was about to marry Jill and his father took him to one side. "When I married your mother, the first thing I did when we got home  was take off my trousers," he said. "I gave them to your mother and  told her to put them on. When she did, they were enormous on her and she said to me that she couldn't possibly wear them, as they were too large. I told her, "of course they're too big. I wear the trousers in this family and I always will. " Ever since that day, we have never had a single problem."....

Jack took his father's advice and as soon as he got Jill alone after the wedding, he did the same thing; took off his trousers, gave them to Jill and told her to put them on. Jill said that the trousers were too big and she couldn't possibly wear
them. "Exactly," replied Jack. "I wear the trousers in this relationship and I always will. I don't want you to forget that".

Jill paused and removed her knickers and gave them to Jack. Try these on," she said, so he tried them on but they were too small. "I can't possibly get into your knickers," said Jack. "Exactly," replied Jill. "And if you don't change your f*cking attitude,
you never will."

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The Budget!!

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Pardon The Interruption

This sports show, it airs on ESPN, is a great Idea and I was thinking how great would it be to have a NZ version of it. The Idea is they have two guys, almost always arguing, These two have a small amount of time, usually 30s to 1min to talk about each subject in Current sports news and then they move on, They have several sections and such, A great Idea and a Great show. I want to see a NZ version.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

On a lighter note...

The final of Bad Girls tonight. Great TV. A modern day Prisoner. Can't wait to see if Fenner gets his just desserts.

Health spending and the Budget

I said this on Jordan Carter's (Just Left) blog on 4 May:

"Let's spend heaps more on Health shall we. From this morning's Herald, and quoted from a locum GP:

"My tale of two cities would suggest the public sector responds inappropriately to acute problems and to significant but non-urgent ones.
When we look at the significant investment in the health sector over the past four years, it is devastating to see how little effect it has had.
Pouring more money into the system without significant functional change is like pouring water into a coarse sieve.
I have wondered for the past 20 years when common sense will triumph so that the health sector serves the population and ceases to be self-serving and inefficient".

Nuff said."


Now we have this from the super Heather Roy: www.act.org.nz/item.aspx/26970.

The sad thing is that tomorrow the general public will be deceived again with more rants from the historian of an extra this billion or that billion on health this and health that.

Wake up New Zild! Stop the waste!

STOP THE PRESS: Just heard on TV One the claim that people are being dumped from the waiting lists to make things look better for the gummint leading up to the election.

I repeat my claim, Wake up New Zild!

John Gillies

This man represents everything that is wrong with our 'justice' system.

Convicted of stabbing a police officer about 10 years ago and in turn turning the cop into a cripple, Gillies is now out and about. What happens next? He refuses to stop for Police; they chase him (as they should); and he gets into a massive scrap with them, injuring one.

What do they find in his car? Speed and cocaine. He is now back inside. You might recall Gillies. We, the workers, paid for his tattoo removal when he was a customer of her majesty's finest.

I hate paying excessive tax, but would gladly pay more if asked (oops, forced) to keep this turd behind bars for ever. I wouldn't piss on Gillies if he was on fire.

Horrendous

There is major news on a horrendous car accident in the Waikato which has killed 8! people. It seems this is the worst fatility since 1995. This is terrible news. Condolences to all concerned. I won't comment on the quality/quantity of state highway Waikato roading as this only denigrates those families affected, suffice to say let's see some action for once.

The truth matters

It has been interesting to watch the reactions of the Labour crowd to the
DBP allegations. First there was refution and denials. Then came the
mounting of the offensive followed by allegations of muck-racking. And then
there were 'virtual' admissions by way of the 'acceptable behaviour at the
time' defence. Jock from About Town said this:

"Tennis balls? Sticky tape? So what? Y' gotta get the job done, and to do
that some people do need to be given incentives to STFU".

Whereas Tristan from the same blog had this to say:

"no one has said that these alligations are not serious..."

Personally, my attitude is softening a little. I don't think either tennis
balls in mouths or caning till you bleed is acceptable. But, having cast my
mind back to my secondary school days there were pupils who needed a good
caning. They certainly never had discipline at home from the way they
behaved.

What I find unacceptable is that if it is shown these allegations have an
element of credibility surrounding them, we have a Minister of Education who
decided to try to hide the fact this occurred and refuted it in Parliament.
To my way of thinking one has much more credibility when one admits to past
indiscretions, admits to fallibilty and in doing both shows some remorse.

I don't expect DBP to do a Bill Clinton now, that time has come. What I do
expect from Ministers in any government is a little less arrogance, and more
sincerity.


Conrad is out

The Hurricanes chances in the semi against the Crusaders have taken a blow, although with the depth in the midfield it shouldn't make too much of a difference. The loss of Conrad Smith to a Head Injury, has opened the door for Tane Tuipulotu, who is almost as good and just missed out on the All Blacks end of season tour last year. This loss of Conrad Smith though could give the Crusaders an opportunity through the midfield, but it isn't as big as some will try to make it out.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Two more questions

Of the sporting type, who will win this weekends FA Cup final? Arsenal or
Arsenal. Second, who will win the Super12 semi's? I'm picking the Bulls to
upset the Waratahs. Naturally I'm picking 'The Arse' to win the FA Cup.
Actually a third question, is it Man U or is it now Man Me considering the
takeover and what can disaffected fans do about it? Easy I reckon. Don't
buy the gear and don't buy match tickets.


Not Exactly Politics or Sport......

I've allways had a thing for good ol' Mickey D's, and like most, was soooo excited when they bought out those Deli Fresh Rolls. Their marketing platform was aimed at health concious people looking for a healthy alternative from the normal fat filled burgers.
However, in a recent report by selected Australian dieticians, it has been found that...

"Two of the rolls were found by Food and Nutrition Australia to have similar fat and kilojoule levels as a Big Mac, which has 2010 kilojoules and 24.9 grams of fat. The Deli Choices Chicken Caesar roll has 2360 kilojoules and the Bacon and Egg 2080. " (Stuff.co.nz)

Bummer, I thought I was being good, i love those Caesar rolls!!

Monday, May 16, 2005

DBP

I'll start my first blog posting with two questions.  First, what does the above acronym mean?  Second, why do we need an independent investigation into the allegations surrounding David Benson-Pope led by the Solicitor General and every other blow-arse who wants to shove his/her nose in there? 
 

Winston as PM???

I'm sure this has come straight from the gossip columns, this is one of the craziest Ideas I have heard in a long time. There is no way that National if elected would let Winston be the Prime Minister, why would they if they have more seats they have more power, therefore they have the PM, Thats how it makes sense. If Winston Peters is the next Prime Minister of New Zealand I will eat my own Hat,(Seriously I will). I know someone will hold me to that, but I'm not worried its ridiculous to even think it may happen. Maybe once in a Blue Moon.

Welcome To A New Zealand Paradigm

This Blog is going to be a collective blog between me, Gooner and Franki for now, but we may add new team members later. This Blog will be about politics and sport topics and will try to cover some of both, while trying to satisfy fans of both.
So come and check it out and we'll be posting soon.

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