Shutting down dissent

July 24th, 2007 at 8:22 am by David Farrar

The Government has released its Electoral Finance Bill. It’s 73 pages long and has too much detail to be dealt with in one post, so I’ll do a series of posts, each dealing with one aspect. There are some good things in there like the Canadian idea of financial agents. Penalties for breaches have been increased (which is good) but are still too low by at least a magnitude and maximum penalties should be ten times those in the Bill. Also disappointingly there is no provision for parties as well as individuals to be held liable.

But the parts I want to focus on today, is three changes. The combination of the three changes represent the biggest threat to free speech and the ability to effectively criticise the Government in recent times.

The Government is changing three things:

  1. It is changing the period of time during which spending is regulated from 90 days before the election to 1 January of election year, which will usually be 11 months.
  2. It is restricting the amount third parties can spent on “election advertising” to $60,000.
  3. It is introducing a new definition of “election advertising” which includes “taking a position on a proposition with which 1 or more parties or 1 or more candidates is associated”

The combination of these three things will shut down any significant criticism of the Government in election year, except by the media. Whether you are on the left or right you should be appalled at this, and preparing to do battle. Remember one day there will be a National Government, and I think people should be able to run ads against what National does when in office. This bill will stop you.

The regulated period

Clause 4 defines the regulated period as “the period that commences on 1 January of that year and ends with the close of polling day” if it is a year in which Parliament is due to expire.

This totally advantages the incumbent Government. It closes down advertising by Opposition parties and third parties for all of election year, but leaves them more able to undertake advertising.

The traditional 90 day period was all about a level playing field, not just on party advertising but also parliamentary and government advertising. The traditional consensus was that parliamentary and government advertising reduce to the bare minimum during the last 90 days, and the parties be restricted to a couple of million each.

Now let us look at what Labour’s changes do to each of the three sorts of advertising:

  • Government advertising is totally unrestricted and can occur throughout all of election year. The Government can spend millions promoting its election year budget, all legally.
  • Parliamentary advertising has been significantly liberalised due to the law over-ruling the Auditor-General. Labour can now fund their pledge card from the taxpayer legally, and distribute it a month before the election
  • Spending by registered parties is greatly reduced. Not only are the limits not even adjusted for inflation, they now apply over an 11 month period instead of a three month period.
  • Spending by third parties is now restricted for all of election year

So what Labour is doing is making it easier for it to spend taxpayer money without challenge in election year, and making it much harder for anyone to criticise what they are doing by doing their own advertising.

The limits for third parties

Now I am not against there being some limits on third parties, seeing there are limits on registered parties, for the last 90 days. Parties can spend $2 million or so, so a limit of say $1 million on a third party could be justified. Remember the problem with the Exclusive Brethren wasn’t that they spent money, but that they were secretive about who was behind it. The new disclosure laws cover that.

A limit of $60,000 spread over 11 months can only be seen as wanting to silence critics. That is around $5,000 a month only. A full page advert in just one newspaper – the NZ Herald – can cost $36,000. So Labour is saying a third party group can not do more than two full pages ads over a year criticising the Government, and only in one city. $60,000 will only get a couple of spots on TV for just one evening. And this is over an 11 month period. It is draconian.

Definition of election advertising

Clause 5(1) defines an election advertisement. Paragraph (a)(i) basically says it includes encouraging people to vote for or not to vote for one or more parties. So that now includes phrases such as “vote out the Government”.

Paragraph (a)(ii) says it also includes encouraging votes for or against a type of party or type of candidate that is described by reference to views, positions or policies of parties or candidates. That means if you are NORML and want to campaign against MPs who do not support cannabis decriminalisation, just saying “Do not vote for MPs who do not support cannabis decriminalisation” is restricted to $60,000 over an entire year.

Paragraph (a)(iii) is the one which made me drop the Bill in disbelief and start phoning people though. This one is the clincher. It says an election advertisements includes

“taking a position on a proposition with which 1 or more parties or 1 or more candidates is associated”

Now just think about this. Anything Labour announces in its election year budget. If you spend any money advocating against it, then bang the limit sets in. You don’t even have to say “Do not vote Labour because their student loans policy is bad”. Just running an ad saying “Free interest on student loans is a bad idea because …” is illegal unless you are a registered third party and you keep spending to under $60,000 in election year.

Also be aware this definition applies to registered parties also. So if National spends money campaigning against a particular policy in February, then it has to spend less money in the actual campaign. Yet Labour has unlimited money from the taxpayer to promote Government policies.

These changes must be stopped in their current form. It is as simple as that. They are unacceptable.

One redeeming aspect is paragraph (2)(g) of Clause 5(2) which exempts blogs from the law. And yes the bill even refers to blogs by name. It says: in reference to things which are not election advertisements

“the publication by an individual, on a non-commercial basis, on the Internet of his or her personal political views (being the kind of publication commonly known as a blog).

Firstly thanks to whoever did put that clause in. But it does show how wide reaching the new definitions are, that they have had to put in a blog exemption. If you are an organisation and run a website, and take a position on a policy associated with a political party, then your website costs may have to be declared as part of your limit.

Also the blog exemption may need some tidying up. Does me receiving some minor income from Google ads make me commercial? At what level could it be seen to do so?

There are now two big issues before New Zealand. One is public service neutrality and the other is freedom of speech. And the two may well be linked. Read what Dominion Post political editor Tracy Watkins says on the Satchell sacking:

The reason Ms Setchell’s job was deemed so sensitive was that Prime Minister Helen Clark had placed carbon neutrality at the forefront of Labour’s political agenda. Ministry staff have been told to rack their brains for bold plans which are likely to form the centrepiece of Labour’s election campaign.

Hitherto the ministry has been an innocuous arm of the civil service. Now the Government’s future may rest partly on the ministry’s ability to help formulate election- winning policies to woo the increasingly critical green vote.

The decision to try to shift Ms Setchell out of a job which would give her access to the Government’s strategy in this highly sensitive area can point to only one thing – that the Government sees the ministry not just as the department that will implement government policy, but as its de facto political and strategic arm.

That sets the controversial and costly Working for Families ad campaign by government departments (roughly $18 million, down from $24 million after the auditor- general intervened) in a whole new light.

So the Government prepares to politicise the civil service further by having them run huge ad campaigns in election year to “inform” people of Government policies. And at the same time they reduce the ability of either the Opposition or third parties to criticise them, except my media release.

Any price for a fourth term.

Tags:

97 Responses to “Shutting down dissent”

  1. Frank () says:

    No wonder there was such a rush to get rid of the laws on sedition?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  2. Selma Bouvier () says:

    The election year spend up by government advertising was pioneered by the Shipley government ( and the Howard government is doing the same)
    Crying over spilt milk. Its so sad. Especially those bad brethren who national knew about but couldnt quite say it.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  3. Ross Nixon () says:

    An independent Governor-General would never sign such legislation… oh, bother!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  4. Insolent Prick () says:

    This Bill will ban the forestry industry from getting its position out in the public arena just as the Government confiscates their carbon credits and by doing so, effectively nationalises the forestry industry.

    The Government needs this Bill, because the last thing they need with this massive sustainability spend-up is any opposing viewpoint.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  5. Selma Bouvier () says:

    The GG has never been independent . Where did you get that idea. They must follow government policy or they are out

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  6. Frank () says:

    Ross Nixon. Our independent Governor-General signed the “Validation Bill” despite a petition. Just another useless figurehead without any Reserve Powers, proping up this deceitful goverment.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  7. Fabt3 (28 comments) says:

    So, can I criticise in my own home….
    Of course not, we have now lost our right to free speech.
    Yes this is what we fought for in WW1 and WW2.
    Democracy yeah right.
    Labour are sure setting themselves up for a horrific backlash that may get physical, might make them reconsider how they treated their protectors over the last few years.
    GG has never been independent, but should have the balls to be able to recognise bad legislation that fundamentally breaches our rights.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  8. dave () says:

    Sting down dissent is exactly what the government is about, It spends more time shutting down dissent than governing. As I have said, political advisors like Hurring should offer policy advice and do their job, no get involved in political sackings. The employer of advisors, the Dept of Internal Affairs, has a code of conduct. That obviously means nothing to Helen Clark.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    Questions – does this stop someone off their own bat leafleting letterboxes anonymously or does it just apply to MSM advertising?

    What happens if there is a snap election – do they retrospectively prosecute or do the set the election for october the next year?

    I for one will be out leafleting letterboxes against this legislation at the weekend, and people should start posting examples of submissions and what to put in leaflets now please. TIA

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  10. peter mck () says:

    Justice Minister Mark Burton yesterday said the Electoral Finance Bill would put all parties on a level playing field, and was intended to “prevent the undue influence of wealth”.

    “The aim of the Bill is to restore confidence, and increase public participation in New Zealand’s electoral process,” Mr Burton said.

    Burton and in fact the whole Labour Caucus are nothing but corrupt liars. This does not present a level playing field when the Government in the seat of power has unlimited spending ability through policy Promotion initiatives.

    I hope this desperate measure becomes the defining issue in the 2008 election as the people understand the implications of what Labour are trying to do and vote in their droves for National in retaliation.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  11. Bogusnews () says:

    Prior to the last election I was travelling in a taxi in Wellington. For polite conversation I asked the driver who he thought was going to win the election. His reply surprised me. “The communists of course.”

    He had fled a communist country in Europe. He said that as someone who had lived under that awful regime it qualified him to be able to “smell” it creeping into NZ.

    In my view, this could be a watershed event for NZ. If the government is allowed to get away with this, then we are well and truly down the track. With 40% of people still wanting to vote for them, it remains to be seen if they will wake up to this.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  12. toms () says:

    Farrar calls foul over the government stopping the abuse of democracy by those with the money but not the mandate. No surprise there, since the right has always relied on cash to drown popular will. There is nothing in the law stopping the much vaunted supposed “thousands” of new National party members getting off their collective Remuera asses and handing out pamphlets on street corners, volunteering to knock on doors and doing all that democratic stuff.

    All this stops is the likes of the forest industry and big business being allowed to desseminate the big lie in the lead up to an election.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  13. slightlyrighty () says:

    This is despicable. I can scarcely beleive this is happening in NZ. Free speech, freedom of expression, freedom of association is now all put to one side so Helen can stay in power.

    This is as bad, if not worse, than the retrospective legislation to legalise their own breach of the election spending law.

    Think carefuuly about this. This government, having been extensively criticised by organised, well resourced third parties, (The Exclusive Bretheren) has now gone to these extraordinary lengths to prevent a repeat of the same.

    This is the same organisation that Helen Clark is quick to dismiss as irrelevant, or describe as a “cult”. She is quick to dismiss their opinions, but look at the length she and her government will go to to stop them repeating their assertions!

    On the bright side, I do see a market for a new book, provisionally titled “Dissention on a Budget”

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  14. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    First attempt at leaflet:

    Next year I will be prosecuted for doing this!

    The government is trying to take away your right to free speech!

    You will not be allowed to criticise the government in election year

    On the back you will find a list of MPs names and addresses

    Write to and email telling them you want your right to free speech

    You can also find MPs Names and addresses at:

    http://www.parliament.nz/NR/rdonlyres/5858C8A5-ACDF-4B35-8D7A-3ABB7B19ACDB/55745/listofmembers210508.pdf

    and as a spreadsheet at:

    http://www.familyfirst.org.nz/files/MP%20Address%20List.xls

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  15. Insolent Prick () says:

    Preventing the undue influence of wealth is horseshit. The Government has $60 billion of resources at its disposal. No other political lobby group comes close.

    This Government will spend millions upon millions of dollars promoting its sustainability policies, through the public service, next year. This Bill is simply designed to shut down any dissenting voice to their biggest policy platform.

    Toms: you are a pathetic creep. Get a frigging job.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  16. Frank () says:

    toms:The Electoral Finance Bill – Explanatory Note, fails to mention that a complaint was laid under the Crimes Act 1961 with the Police Commissioner alleging the Misappropriation of Public Funds during the election. So even in legislation a cover-up is seeking to be passed into law!In my book this is third world corruption?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  17. insider () says:

    Why is anyone surprised that MfE is seen is a policy wing of the govt? Anyone who has dealt with it must know that it is not staffed by grey bureaucrats but by zealots with big ideas and growing budgets wanting to shape the world in their image, but little experience about life outside university and the public service on which to base their big ideas.

    Science, balance, research and facts are not needed. It’s more about perceptions and what people feel about the environment, and blow the facts. It is probably more successful for them to make things appear much worse because that attracts funding.

    Hugh Logan’s demonstrated lack of independence and leadership over the Setchell issue seems to have proved the politicisation of the ministry.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  18. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    Toms and his ilk have pushed us into the third world so he can’t see why we shouldn’t have the corruption that goes with it.

    Porc, Peoples democratic republic of Aoteroa

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  19. toms () says:

    IP: “Get a job?” Are you serious? The amount of time you spend tireless polluting the blogsphere makes me seriously believe you are unemployed, or more likely unemployable given your obvious anger issues. Pul-lease. I suppose your role as the somewhat vulgar wannabe head of Farrar’s Fascists keeps you from work?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  20. CraigM () says:

    Farrar’s Fascists …WTF??

    My God, there really are people in NZ who think like TomS?

    This legislation would be the end of NZ as we know it. The socialists final stand, the highlighting of their true agenda for NZ.

    It is a day of shame for our country that such a vile piece of legislation has made it to Parliament. How can anyone, not be concerned?

    This is not an issue for partisan politics, this effects our very right, to a democratically elected government.

    For the first time in my life, I am actually going to write to my MP and as many others as I can get to.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  21. kiwi in america () says:

    Toms and Selma
    If you add Labour’s wealthy donors (remember the single $500k donation)+the $900k it stole from the tax payer+all the money the trade unions spent (some of which came from the tax payer funded union ‘education’ fund)+their own other fundraising+all the money the goverment spent on publicising Labour policies (WFF etc) and stack that alongside National’s total spend + the Exclusive Brethren then tell us who has the most money to influence the process.

    This legislative change is an attempt to permanently enshrine this differential.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  22. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    It is easy to create email lists from the spreadsheet – the instructions are inside it.

    I might add “Phil Goff wants to take away your free speech; vote for free speech; dont vote for Phil Goff”

    I’m assuming that National wont role over on this one and vote for the bill just so they dont have a defeat. :mrgreen:

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  23. toms () says:

    and as a spreadsheet at:

    http://www.familyfirst.org.nz/files/MP%20Address%20List.xls

    Porcupine and familyfirst in the same paragraph? Who would have thought! Hold the press! kiwiblog wingnut linked with fundy nutjobs!

    Sorta sums up the rightwing contributors here – isolated, marginalised and angry as hell fundy wingnuts.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  24. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    The enemy of my enemy is my friend.

    wingnut = someone who disagrees with communists controlling every aspect of our life.

    toms, I’m a liberal intellectual and I am “isolated, marginalised” in my own country, and angry as hell about it.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  25. insider () says:

    That enemy of mine enemy stuff will lead to tears. Stick to your principles and don’t ally with people you would normally disdain just for short term gain.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  26. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    I am not allied to them although they do take a stand on some issues I agree with (no hells as I have said). But I’ll take your advice insider and put my own spreadsheet up. Cheers.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  27. Seamonkey Madness () says:

    Stuff leafleting! Graffiti up the walls outside parliament more like it! Communist regimes have been brought down by the little people on the street – so will it be with this corrupt regime.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  28. Spam (596 comments) says:

    Excellent. TomS is back an his argument boils down to ad-hominem attacks.

    Nothing new there then.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  29. Redbaiter () says:

    “Any price for a fourth term.”

    Yep, or if you like, any price for power. Redbaiter has been pilloried day after day with accusations of paranoia and insanity (by leftists with no real ability to argue their point) but here in this legislation is the proof that I am right, that I always was right, and that when I say the left will sacrifice all that is good to their obsession with power, I will always be right.

    The left are constantly attempting to limit political diversity and freedom of expression. It is the only way they can win. They cannot deal with logic, information and rationale. They must therefore shut down avenues of free speech that will challenge their doctrines. Gradually, but by bit by bit, they will limit our freedom to express opposition to their delusional ideas.

    This is only one strategy. More of the same is on the way, you can bet your life on it.

    THEY ARE TOTALITARIANS.

    The power crazed Helen Klark and her disgusting socialist acolytes are not worth the saliva of anyone who truly values democracy choice and freedom.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  30. peter mck () says:

    Stephen Franks has an excellent piece that sums this up. http://www.stephenfranks.co.nz/

    What cost to democracy and freedom of speech will NZ tolerate. What will Labour do next to ensure that they continue to retain the baubles of Power.

    The Benson-Pope affair has again demonstrated how vile, vindictive and utterly corrupt this government has become. The civil Service is losing all credibility and if any CEO endorses promotion of Labour Party Policy policies thinly disguised as “Policy Promotion” then they are part of that corruption.

    Labour are desperate and have now demonstrated that they will do anything to ensure they have every advantage (and National every disadvantage) when fighting an election.

    Now more than ever Labour need to be humiliated in the 2008 election because to give them a fouth term will be dangerous for the essence of NZ’s future as a democratic country.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  31. Malcolm () says:

    We now have the beginning of the end. Early Nazi Germany would be proud of these moves to shut down opposition to any ruling government. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. The present regime is neither democratic nor just towards the the rights of free speach and freedom of association. We are but a flick of a finger from total supression of any thoughts that do not agree with the ruling power. And I defy any of the lying politicos particularly Labour to prove otherwise. Their sole raison de tre is to retain power at all costs but, particularly by suppression of the masses. No wonder they dance up and down about Fiji, its too close to home. And I for one do not see any difference.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  32. bwakile () says:

    This is just the tip of the freedom of speech iceberg. Just google “freedom of speech canada” to get get a view of what lies below the surface.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  33. roger nome () says:

    “The Government is changing three things:

    1. It is changing the period of time during which spending is regulated from 90 days before the election to 1 January of election year, which will usually be 11 months.
    2. It is restricting the amount third parties can spent on “election advertising” to $60,000.
    3. It is introducing a new definition of “election advertising” which includes “taking a position on a proposition with which 1 or more parties or 1 or more candidates is associated””.

    This could be a watershed for politics in New Zealand. Finally we’re going to see some real democracy! Not just the same old corporate plutocracy where the Business community can buy elections (ala 1983, 1987 and very nearly 2005).

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  34. helmet () says:

    Bad legislation for sure. A big step in the wrong direction. But I think maybe some of you guys are being a wee bit paranoid? Surely National can just repeal/amend it when it gets in power? (as they surely will).

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  35. helmet () says:

    Roger/Phillip John, How exactly does advertising force people to vote for a party they disagree with again?

    Please, no graphs or statistics.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  36. Redbaiter () says:

    “Finally we’re going to see some real democracy!

    The kind of “democracy” that filthy communist totalitarian scum like you promote has seen whole nations in chains for generations.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  37. David Farrar (1,871 comments) says:

    Helmet – National in power might find it useful to have a law which stops people criticising it through advertising in election year.

    Roger – I look forward to you discovering that Greenpeace are banned from running a campaign because the Green Party supports them on that issue.

    Toms – “Farrar’s Fascists” steps over the line so you have a temporary ban. I can’t recall if you have been banned before (the length doubles each time) so I will give you benefit of the doubt and it applies for one week only.

    Others – the law is draconian, but Nazi comparisons do not help. Think Singapore or China even (where some criticism is allowed but not too much)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  38. Insolent Prick () says:

    Roger/Phillip John:

    Yet again you are proving that you are as dumb as cat shit.

    There was no election in 1983.

    PJ, did you support the therapeutic medicines Bill? Did you want an Australian regulator to control what you can and can’t buy? Because the Greens didn’t support it. And surprise surprise, the Bill got shot down in Parliament because the Government lost the public debate on it. The only reason it lost the public debate was because individuals got together and launched a campaign opposing the legislation.

    This Government, with $60 billion of resources behind it, couldn’t even win such a trifling argument as whether to register alternative medicines in the face of public debate on the issue.

    Labour wants to ban any other such campaign again, because the power of its ideas, even with massive state resources behind it, just can’t win.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  39. Anon () says:

    Selma says: “The election year spend up by government advertising was pioneered by the Shipley government.” I am not sure this is true (I seem to remember govt ads in 1987 promoting GST) but even if it is true, what is your point? That because Shipley’s govt abused its power, Clark should be able to do the same?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  40. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,830 comments) says:

    You only have to listen to radio Left Wing News to hear at least half the so called news already is party political broadcasts for Dear leader’s policies.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  41. roger nome () says:

    “Roger/Phillip John, How exactly does advertising force people to vote for a party they disagree with again?”

    Helmet – repeat a lie often enough and eventually it becomes the truth. This is what advertising is all about, convincing people to do things/buy things that they wouldn’t normally. The better the manipulation of emotions and language involved, the better the advertising – the truth is irrelevant. No body understands this better than the professional pollsters employed by the National party – that’s why they will be squealing at the top of their lungs about this one. Elections are going to be decided more by policy and less by advertising budget and manipulation. Nothing could be better for our democracy.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  42. helmet () says:

    That only works if you’re stupid PJ. I can see why you’re so concerned.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  43. CraigM () says:

    Roger – “Finally we’re going to see some real democracy!”

    Just how does democracy benefit when one side can get their point across with virtually unlimited resources and no one else can match it?

    Case in point, the free use of Government departments to promote, rather than just implement, government policy.

    Your idea of democracy is fucked up dude.

    I recently moved back here from overseas because I didn’t want a transfer from the New York office to China, even with all the ‘baubles’ that came with the job.

    Jokes on me, I get to live in China anyway.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  44. slightlyrighty () says:

    What I can’t understand is why people like roger nome beleive that a corporate identity should have less rights to influence politics than an individual or a trade union.

    Note that the right of trade unions to influence votes remains unimpeded under this legislation.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  45. AGJ (556 comments) says:

    With all due respect IP I think you are being unduly fair on cat shit.

    repeat a lie often enough and eventually it becomes the truth

    peak oil anyone?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  46. roger nome () says:

    “There was no election in 1983.”

    oh – excuse the typo, it was 1984 (you may have noticed that 3 is right next to 4 on the keyboard before you went flying off the handle)

    “Roger – I look forward to you discovering that Greenpeace are banned from running a campaign because the Green Party supports them on that issue.”

    I’ve got no problem with this – as I’ve said, elections should be decided by policy, not advertising budget.

    “PJ, did you support the therapeutic medicines Bill?”

    Can’t say that I lost any sleep over it.

    “The kind of “democracy” that filthy communist totalitarian scum like you promote has seen whole nations in chains for generations.”

    Nice Mr Baiter – you can call me communist scum as much as you like, but that doesn’t change the fact that I’m a liberal social democrat, who believes passionately in democracy.

    My over-all feeling from this post any many of the comments on this thread is that the far-right is annoyed that money is that the rich aren’t going to have as much of a disproportionate influence on our democracy as they used to. They are lamenting our gaining a purer democracy – they are therefore, by definition anti-democratic.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  47. CraigM () says:

    AGJ, peak oil anyone?

    please,ffs, don’t start him on that again.

    “repeat a lie often enough and eventually it becomes the truth”

    We can see this in practice at the moment with Clark and DBP. Labour live by that mantra.

    There is also no truth to the rumour that Roger nome is about to undergo surgery to have his blinkers removed.

    Surgeons have declared his conditiont in-operable.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  48. roger nome () says:

    “Just how does democracy benefit when one side can get their point across with virtually unlimited resources and no one else can match it?”

    That’s just paranoid hysteria. People need to know what policies are in place so they can take advantage of them – i.e. kiwisaver.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  49. Scott () says:

    Congratulations to David for a very thoughtful analysis. As he says one-day National will be in power. The rationale for this legislation — the Exclusive Brethren — still seems to me to be wildly overblown. They recorded their names on the anti-green pamphlet — what is contested is whether they were businessmen (who happened to be members of the same church) who funded the pamphlet in their own right, or whether they were acting as representatives of the exclusive brethren church. They say the former, the media say the latter. Who is to know?
    It seems to me that Labour should be very careful about introducing this legislation on such a flimsy pretext. One-day National will be in power.
    I would be interested to hear from anyone — does this limit trade union advertising? It seems to me they are just as powerful a lobby group as the exclusive brethren and they have openly for many years supported the Labour Party and vociferously opposed the National Party.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  50. helmet () says:

    “repeat a lie often enough and eventually it becomes the truth. This is what advertising is all about, convincing people to do things/buy things that they wouldn’t normally.”
    In New Zealand politics?

    That’s just paranoid hysteria.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  51. roger nome () says:

    “Note that the right of trade unions to influence votes remains unimpeded under this legislation.”

    If that is the truth I really do take issue with it. Though i suspect that they, like companies, will be legally able to communicate with their members about elections, but unable to spend over the $60,000 on public campaigns.

    [DPF: Unions are not mentioned but organisations are exempted in communicating with their members. Of course companies do not have members yet unions do, so by default all companies are excluded]

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  52. roger nome () says:

    ““repeat a lie often enough and eventually it becomes the truth. This is what advertising is all about, convincing people to do things/buy things that they wouldn’t normally.”
    In New Zealand politics?

    That’s just paranoid hysteria.”

    So basic marketing theory = paranoid hysteria? Your game is slipping, helmet old chap.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  53. Bogusnews () says:

    They say that every revolution starts with an idea, and ends when the only idea left is to retain power at all costs.

    This is eerily familiar with this govt when you look at the scant legislation table, the half cocked ideas that keep getting thrown out.

    The good of the country is expendable. Staying in power is the only thing HC is obsessed with now.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  54. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    Greenpeace banned from protesting – sure, sure….

    What about unions?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  55. CraigM () says:

    “That’s just paranoid hysteria.”

    Sorry, it’s reality Roger nome.

    The Government (any) gets finances to press their “wins”, but the opposition doesn’t get the resources to highlight the faults/losses/mistakes, or just plain old alternatives?

    Industry isn’t allowed to use competitive finances to point out alternatives to government policy that effects them?

    Individuals cannot point out (in a financially competitive way) alternatives to government policy, if 1 or more candidates is involved in the same issue?

    As I said, your blinkers are fixed and your idea of democracy is that anything is ok as long as you agree with it and as long as business/industry or people who have been successful in building wealth are not allowed to be involved.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  56. insider () says:

    The Ministry for the Environment’s planned advertising campaign on the dangers of climate change and the govt’s response to it, is likely to have a budget similar to that for Working for Families. A final appropriation has not yet been made for the campaign, but Benson-Pope, Parker and Cullen are close to agreeing on a figure for this year’s supplementary estimates. The justification for the campaign will be that climate change is a global crisis and that it is important all NZers know what the Govt is doing to combat it, and how they can contribute to reducing greenhouse emissions.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  57. roger nome () says:

    “They say that every revolution starts with an idea, and ends when the only idea left is to retain power at all costs.

    This is eerily familiar with this govt when you look at the scant legislation table, the half cocked ideas that keep getting thrown out.”

    Oh what a load of unmitigated hysterical rubbish. Democracy, at its core is about every member in society having equal political power. That’s why we have one vote for everyone, not one vote for every $10,000 dollars you earn. This legislation brings us closer to that ideal. So everyone who believes in democracy should be celebrating it. However, as I’ve come to realize. Those on the right aren’t much interested in democracy. Plutocracy is their ideal.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  58. helmet () says:

    “If that is the truth I really do take issue with it.”

    Welcome to the dark side PJ.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  59. helmet () says:

    You can’t buy my vote mate. I don’t see why it should be any different for everyone else.
    You claim “democracy” rules because people are too easily bought. F*&k, if thats the case, why don’t we just have the state vote for them?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  60. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    Hey roger I’m not a capitalist pig, I dont have a lot of money but I agree with the ones who are for free speech. I have every intention of anonymously leafleting next election whether or not its illegal and whether or not it hurts the party(s) I’m trying to help. Its the closest we’ve got to free speech in this country.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  61. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    IP, logic and good sense don’t always triumph even with the free speech we’ve got now eh?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  62. roger nome () says:

    “You can’t buy my vote mate. I don’t see why it should be any different for everyone else.”

    Congratulations helmet, you’re one of the 5-10% inside the beltway that isn’t easily swayed buy the mass-marketing manipulation of the political pollsters. The truth is that marketing works on the majority of people – why would companies spend billions of dollars on it every year if it didn’t work?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  63. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    The other 90-95% vote labour

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  64. CraigM () says:

    “That’s why we have one vote for everyone, not one vote for every $10,000 dollars you earn. This legislation brings us closer to that ideal.”

    I call BS on that RN. The bill puts the government of the day in a seriously superior position to the opposition.

    Honestly, stop and look at what you are saying. How would you react if “the far right” as you brand us, was in power today and introduced this bill, effectively stopping the opposition party and citizens from effectively presenting their alternative policies in an election year?

    It is crap legislation as currently written and if you can’t see that, you are just conserva-phobic.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  65. roger nome () says:

    “Hey roger I’m not a capitalist pig, I dont have a lot of money but I agree with the ones who are for free speech.”

    I believe in free speech as well. However free speech is a rather hollow concept when one group (the rich) has a 500 Watt PA system, and everyone else has to talk through a 5 foot wall of foam.

    [DPF: The new law means everyone has to talk through 5 foot wall of foam. And in case Roger has missed it, many rich people give to Labour and left wing parties - some elections Labour raises more money than National]

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  66. Tony () says:

    Thanks for the review . . . very interesting.

    One point worth noting is Paragraph (a)(iii) “taking a position on a proposition with which 1 or more parties or 1 or more candidates is associated” not only means it will become illegal to oppose government policies (if they are also opposed by any opposition party or candidate). It will mean it will also become illegal to support any government government policies OR oppose any opposition parties.

    The only legal position you can have in public is to be neutral. This law literally neutralises debate !

    I assume the government has exempted itself from this restriction.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  67. roger nome () says:

    “Honestly, stop and look at what you are saying. How would you react if “the far right” as you brand us, was in power today and introduced this bill, effectively stopping the opposition party and citizens from effectively presenting their alternative policies in an election year?”

    So get off your arses. Round up all the suits and suburban soccer-mums and take to the streets come election time. How much would that cost you? The right will, from now on have to win elections with people power and convincing policy. This is what real democracy is all about mate. Great stuff!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  68. Linda Wright () says:

    If this bill becomes law I will start a nation-wide newspaper (with associated website) and publish articles of interest in the 11 months prior to the election.

    Any advertising dollars that support the newspaper would be well spent.

    I can use the marketing budget to advertise the newspaper on TV – featuring the articles I am publishing, of course.

    I think that would leap thru the loophole nicely.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  69. CraigM () says:

    “…..However free speech is a rather hollow concept when one group (the rich) has a 500 Watt PA system, and everyone else has to talk through a 5 foot wall of foam.”

    And there-in lies the truth according to RN.

    Waste of time arguing anything on it’s merits. Mind made up.

    Centre/right = “Rich”

    “Rich” = bad.

    As much as I disagree with most of what you say, I honestly thought you were were more intelligent than you have proven to be during this debate.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  70. roger nome () says:

    “Centre/right = “Rich” “Rich” = bad.”

    That’s an extremely unfair representation of what I’ve been saying Craig. One of my best friends is the the son of a QC, great guy. My point is that different sectors of society (i.e. different socio-economic groups) tend to have different, and often times, conflicting interests. As such, in a democracy they should be able to promote those interests with relative equal power. This legislation will move us closer to that democratic ideal.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  71. helmet () says:

    Now PJ I think you’re hanging too much on the ‘advertising brainwashing’ hypothesis.
    DPF has already debunked the vote/advertising budget correlation in NZ. Just because advertising works for Coke doesn’t mean it’s going to be as effective (or on the same scale) as the nats or labour or the greens.
    Furthermore, under your approach, this advertising is only a problem if it contains lies, which is also generally not much of an issue in NZ political advertising.
    Your paternalistic approach tells a lot about the respect you have for the average citizen.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  72. roger nome () says:

    “[DPF: The new law means everyone has to talk through 5 foot wall of foam.

    So people can take to the streets/organise protests to get their points across - this is what happens in vibrant and robust democracies.

    "and in case Roger has missed it, many rich people give to Labour and left wing parties - some elections Labour raises more money than National]“

    I know, and this is a great thing because now the wealthy elite’s grip on the left will loosen. The left will no longer have to compromise it’s position in order to placate that particular (extreme) minority.

    [DPF: Best not advertise those protest marches though. Also cost of placards may have to be declared]

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  73. gd () says:

    To those on the Right (I prefer the term Freedom Fighter) Dont panic. If this legislation had been proposed 10 years or more ago then it would have had far more impact Reason This and all other blog sites The Socialists ( Im thinking of changing this to Communists) dont control the airwaves like they once did. Until they try and shut down blogs ( the next step?) then we have the power to speak up and if they wont listen then we can move to the next level. Freedom Fighters need to keep writing letters to those editors not already in the pockets of the Communists and keep posting on blogs that will allow freedom of speech. Never surrender. Never give in. Fight the bastards. Nil carborundum desperundum.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  74. CraigM () says:

    RN- “That’s an extremely unfair representation of what I’ve been saying Craig.”

    Disagree Roger, it is a picture that has developed over the thread. And I’m talking politics, not friendships.

    Three times I have raised issues about the INEQUALITY that this bill brings to democracy, in that it strongly favours the government of the day. You have ignored the issue.

    Then you say: “…promote those interests with relative equal power”

    EXACTLY. So how does this bill allow that? It allows the government of the day to use the various government dept’s to promote it’s policies without anyone having an equal opportunity to respond. Geez.

    Leaving that behind, as I am sure you have a lot more to say on the other thread, now that we know the bill also still allows for the anonymous trusts to play a part……now that is wrong.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  75. roger nome () says:

    “Furthermore, under your approach, this advertising is only a problem if it contains lies, which is also generally not much of an issue in NZ political advertising.”

    Lies isn’t the same thing as manipulation Helmet – go back and look at what I’ve written.

    “Just because advertising works for Coke doesn’t mean it’s going to be as effective (or on the same scale) as the nats or labour or the greens.”

    So now you acknowledge that marketing is effective, but not in politics? Sorry helmet but that’s just logically inconsistent. Try and convince DPF of your position – you won’t.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  76. Rumpole () says:

    Linda W

    Will your paper be the communication arm of your union representing all people opposed to Labour. I am sure their contributions would enable sufficient publicity to counter the state especially if commercial interests joined. Perhaps there will be other papers too.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  77. Socrates () says:

    “As such, in a democracy they should be able to promote those interests with relative equal power.” I agree.

    “This legislation will move us closer to that democratic ideal.” I disagree. This legislation moves us further away. It gives a disproportionate power to promote interests to the government full stop, and at this time the governments allies (Unions).

    Though as a side note I think the government may have made a huge cock-up. The government also seems to have left it open for religious groups (organisations) to be exempt, thus the brethren will have NO limit when communicating with its members. Thus if they want to put a two page advertising spread in the national papers to communicate with their members… They can… So can Destiny, the Catholics etc… I may be wrong here though…

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  78. Rumpole () says:

    John Key can effectively neutralise this by publically stating the legislation will be retrospectively removed and all MPs voting for it will be committing an offence and will bear personal liability for fines & costs and those prosecuting or assisting will be treated similary. Look forwad to time in the big house Helen followed by the rest of your life in the poor house.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  79. Linda Wright () says:

    Actually Rumpole, I was thinking it would be a proper newspaper – therefore freely available to the general public. But, of course, I would be able to select the columnists I want – and guest articles from, say Roger Kerr, or David Farrer, or Phil Rennie, or Federated Farmers, or any number of other people who may want their opinion heard, but could not legally advertise.

    And like other newspapers, I could run TV ads promoting the stories and what they contain – not advertising against the govt, but promoting my paper, of course.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  80. Pascal () says:

    Roger Nome: “That’s why we have one vote for everyone, not one vote for every $10,000 dollars you earn. This legislation brings us closer to that ideal.”

    You miss one thing in your myopic view of this bill. The government has NO restriction on the amount it can spread. So despite all your “liberal social democratic” BS, you are supporting a totalitarian regime which will disallow any dissension.

    Government = unlimited spending until the taxpayer funding dries up
    Everyone else = $60,000 per election year

    And you are SERIOUSLY trying to convince people that you consider that to be a fair, representative democratic answer? Pull the other one, it has bells.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  81. Anon () says:

    Roger Nome says: “people can take to the streets/organise protests to get their points across – this is what happens in vibrant and robust democracies.”

    Why should they have to do this? Why can’t they donate a couple of hundred bucks to an organisation they agree with so that it can present their collective views through advertising?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  82. helmet () says:

    Using advertising to persuade the electorate is fine. You have to remember, we’re talking advertising here, not actual coercion. Socialist rubbish- you’re saying advertising good policy is coercing people to vote for it. Calling advertising manipulation is a bit paternalistic don’t you think?

    Your basic premise that advertising is coercion is flawed. And yes PJ, marketing in politics is a different game to marketing other things, even though much common ground is shared. I’m suprised you can’t see that, it seems a silly point to get hung up on. You can market bad policy all you like and people still won’t vote for it unless they’re stupid, which I suspect is your concern with the lefty constituency which you are so scared of losing.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  83. Malcolm () says:

    Nazi Comparisons may be unpalatable to you but those who do not learn from history are bound to repeat it. We are too apathetic as a people in accepting the manipulations of our politicians without question. If bloging solicits this much response why are we not on the streets shouting and fighting for our democratic rights. It’s not just about the politicians and their parties it’s about our basic rights. Ishould be able to say it how i see it and pay for it with my own money and not fear that I have transgressed a law other than liable.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  84. dissenter () says:

    Why should everyone’s vote count for the same?

    rich people pay more tax, their votes should be worth more. That would be one way they can get some extra value from all the extra money they pour in to constantly subsidise the rest of you pathetic moaners.

    The problem was with giving the vote to non-land-owners in the first place.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  85. cubit9f () says:

    Has NZ First paid back their Public Funds Donation yet?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  86. gd () says:

    Malcolm Agree with you Those who would invoke Godwins law do so to shut down timely debate. They cant mount an effective counter arguement to the fact that the State is planning on implementing a law that will allow it to use tax payer funds to crush and snuff out any other opinion. the State should be bound by the same rules as it sets its citizens. Its has always been abhorent to me that the State has set itself above and beyond the laws that the good citizen must obey.

    This is a 2 faced hyprocrisy that we the citizen have been subjected to for too long. Why should the Socialists not be bound by the same rules. IOts time to storm the Bastille whilst we still can and stick their heads on spikes as a warning to others. Time to take the tablets and lie down methinks

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  87. roger nome () says:

    Helmet:

    I tutor and mark essays for a university paper called “The mass-media and modern politics”.

    Your assumption, that advertising campaigns have no impact on elections, is breathtakingly stupid. It’s all about how much $ you have to spend and how you present your message. Pollsters conduct focus groups and surveys to gauge different demographic’s reaction to certain issues, and the phraseology of statements on those issues. They then use their findings to choose which issues to emphasis/deemphasize and exactly how to phrase their advertising on those issues. It’s a statistical/psychological science they’re professionals and bloody good at what they do.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  88. Brownie () says:

    Watch out you emailling crusaders – earlier this year this Government passed new legislation banning unsolicited mass emails which. This law carries strict penalties to any emails that don’t (at the very least) have an “unsubscribe” option and with one stroke of the red pen they could include MP’s in this.

    They may decide that instead of communicating your point of view, you may be marketing to them. Would that then come into the category of this law?

    Or at the very least, you may have that very apolitical of organisations, the SIS, tracking you down and “explaining the Governments version of Democracy to you.

    It’s a slippery slope, Ladies and Gents (and Gender neutrals, and ethnic minorities etc … oh bugger it! A powhiri will be forthcoming on anyone I’ve missed out here) when the government of the day decides who can speak and who can’t simply by stopping their money. A KGB-like era must surely only be a sniff away.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  89. KarenB () says:

    Helen Clark should go and work for the EU. She would fit in perfectly there. They are just alot further down the track in taking away citizens rights to free speech than we are, but Helens methods have the same distinct smell about them.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  90. cynic () says:

    Charlie I have followed your advice and gone to the “source.” Read between the lines and its pretty easy to get the full picture. Here it is:

    2 Madeleine Setchell applied for a senior position with the Ministry for the Environment and, I understand, made a disclosure of her personal connections. The Ministry for the Environment at first did not realize the significance of Ms Setchell’s potential conflict of interest and the chief executive was certainly not aware of any potential conflict of interest at the time of her appointment to the position.

    3 The possibility of an issue was brought to the attention of the Chief Executive, Mr Hugh Logan, by way of a phone call from the office of the Minister for the Environment after Ms Setchell had started work at the Ministry.

    IN OTHER WORDS THE MINISTRY DID NOT REALISE THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE CONFLICT OF INTEREST UNTIL DBP’S LICKSPITTLE CONTACTED THEM

    The staff member from the Minister’s office indicated that it would be helpful to know whether this was true but also stressed that it was entirely the chief executive’s responsibility to make decisions on the employment of staff.

    YES THE STAFF MEMBER SAID ITS YOUR DECISION BUT THE STAFF MEMBER THOUGHT TO THEMSELVES HOW OFTEN AM I CONTACTED BY A MINISTER’S OFFICE ON EMPLOYMENT ISSUES HMM… I CAN CONNECT THE DOTS

    4 Once the chief executive clarified the position that Ms Setchell’s partner held he considered that there was the potential for a conflict of interest that required management.

    THAT IS ONCE A PARTISAN HAD INFORMED THEM OF THE DISPLEASURE OF THE POLITICAL WING OF THE EXECUTIVE…

    The Commissioner’s advice was based on two principles:

    • That public servants should be considered on their merits, and their political loyalties should not normally be questioned.

    • That senior public servants have an obligation to maintain loyal service to the government of the day – including, sometimes, discreet support on politically sensitive matters – without compromising their ability to serve future governments.

    IN OTHER WORDS THE COMISSIONER WAS SUGGESTING THERE ISN’T REALLY A PROBLEM BUT YOU KNOW HAT HELENGRADS LIKE THESE DAYS…

    7 My understanding is that Mr Logan informed the Minister of the issue. However, Mr Logan is very clear that the Minister stressed that staff issues were the responsibility of the chief executive alone.

    8 Mr Logan is clear that he made the decision independently and that the Minister was not involved in that decision.

    BUT WITH A FEW GROANS, TWITCHES, AND SIGHS DBP MADE HIS THOUGHTS KNOWN…

    It is my understanding that Hugh Logan and Madeleine Setchell did explore options which would have involved the offer to her of an alternative position.

    EXCUSE ME DEAR MADELIENE I KNOW ITS A STEP DOWN BUT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SWEEP THE FLOORS?

    Though these issues hardly ever emerge as matters of public comment they are not rare. Senior managers are always asked to manage these conflicts and they require sensitivity and good judgement to successfully navigate.

    WHY DID THIS ONE EMERGE? COS CONTROL FREAK DBP INTERVENED WHEN OTHER MORE PROFESSIONAL MINISTERS HAVE NOT…

    It has been pointed out by the State Services Commissioner that his own career is an example. His brother has been active in politics throughout Mark Prebble’s time as a public servant.

    PREBBLE KINDLY STATED THIS TO REINFORCE THE POINT – OOO SHIT IS MARK PREBBLE GOING TO SLASH AND BURN THE BLOATED BUREAUCRACY BECAUSE HE IS THE BROTHER OF THAT ACTOPHILE RICHARD PREBBLE?

    In maintaining a politically neutral public service we continue to expect that chief executives protect both their employees and their departments from situations that might expose them to conflicts of interest, perceived or actual.

    I LIKE THE PERCIEVED PART DON’T YOU?

    This case has in his view demonstrated that the Ministry for the Environment should have a more formal registration of actual or potential conflicts of interest for senior staff both existing and those in the recruitment process

    IN OTHER WORDS THIS SORRY STATE OF AFFAIRS APPEARS TO BE A WAY IN WHICH THE GRUBBY LITTLE HELENGRAD CRONIES ARE GOING TO WARP OUR POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS FOR THEIR ON BENEFIT. I HOPE IT COMES BACK TO BITE THEM IN THE ARSE…

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  91. Charlie Tan () says:

    Thank you very much, cynic. You have shown that

    a) while it may have been improper DBP’s “lickspittle” to contact the chief executive, there is only speculation that shows that DBP had anything to do with the decision. Speculation that is so tenuous, in fact, that the National party needs to argue about semantics in order to “prove” its case.

    b) This can only be a scandal when it is massaged by the comments of suspicious nats.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  92. Porcupine (242 comments) says:

    DB-P is quite capable of imploding himself without any help from the Nats. Its just a shame that the NZ voter didn’t wake up to these labour gobblers 7 years ago and saved us all this agony.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  93. helmet () says:

    PJ you’re wrong.
    I tutor and mark essays for crimes and contracts at law school… so what.

    If what you’re saying is true, then the party with the most money would win the election.

    If not, then there must be other variables, and your assertion that the money is everything is wrong.

    I suppose this might be a crazy idea for you, but sometimes theories don’t hold up so well in real life.
    Peak oil anyone?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  94. Clint Heine () says:

    Terribly ironic that PJ/Roger says he is pleased the funding is restricted and yet nothing about the fact that Labour can spend what it likes.

    And he says he marks students papers? We had names for people like him at Uni.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  95. roger nome () says:

    “If what you’re saying is true, then the party with the most money would win the election.”

    Oh well, that’s rubbish and you you know that. National had about twice as much $ to throw around as the Labs did last election, yet they still lost. So obviously money isn’t everything, yet it offers a huge advantage. For instance, if National had the same amount of funding as Labour for the last election they probably would have got no more than 35% of the vote as a opposed to the 39% that they received.

    “I tutor and mark essays for crimes and contracts at law school… so what.”

    I would have thought that this would be obvious also – in that I teach adults about the effect of advertising on politics – you know like I’m taking you to school now :-)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  96. helmet () says:

    “If what you’re saying is true, then the party with the most money would win the election.”

    Oh well, that’s rubbish and you you know that.”

    Thankyou. You cannot buy elections in NZ.

    “I would have thought that this would be obvious also – in that I teach adults about the effect of advertising on politics – you know like I’m taking you to school now”

    You know your argument is weak when you need to start stating your qualifications- “…I’m a teacher so I must be right…” I don’t need to tell you that political science among the easiest and most worthless degrees out there.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  97. aaa () says:

    ” don’t need to tell you that political science among the easiest and most worthless degrees out there.”

    Tell that to Helen Clark…

    Its almost as worthless as another prat taking a law degree

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.