Starship gives money back to NZ First

December 14th, 2007 at 11:28 pm by David Farrar

Oh this has become a PR disaster for NZ First. Starship Hospital has now rejected their $158,000 donation:

“It’s most unfortunate that the money wasn’t given in the spirit of genuine philanthropy, but rather it appears to gain political capital and media leverage,” he said.

“We have decided it’s in the best interest of the Starship Foundation and the sick children of New Zealand to return the money to NZ First.”

This is an absolute humiliation.

45 Responses to “Starship gives money back to NZ First”

  1. MikeE (446 comments) says:

    Ron isn’t a liberal, would hardly fit into ACT .. Nats maybe, they believe in anythng that suits them.

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  2. Craig Ranapia (1,301 comments) says:

    Ron isn’t a liberal, would hardly fit into ACT .. Nats maybe, they believe in anythng that suits them.

    OK, Mike, got to say ACT’s done some shit that would only be recognizable as classical liberalism if viewed through a very thick pair of beer goggles. So let’s send that particular moral high horse to the knackers yard, and see ACT focused on cleaning their own house instead of bitching the Nats. If nothing else, it didn’t compensate for a weirdly ill-focused campaign in ’05.

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  3. Kevin (979 comments) says:

    Yes, Craig you’ve got a good point its just that the parties need to weigh up what is good for the country and not just for the people in the party. If Ron could bring in another 100K party votes for National its worth considering thats all. But I do agree that anyone that has stuck out with the curent government has to be considered severely damaged goods.

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  4. Raffles (61 comments) says:

    We all must recall when little Ronnie was telling Simon Power that 4 years ago a review of the Correction H/Q was all that was needed. Next he was out selling the dog mirco chipping crap.
    Then the anti smacking bill and now the EFB.

    What more evidence do you need to convict

    Got the impression the Tui adv is close by.

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  5. side show bob (3,442 comments) says:

    Well said Raffles, souls are cheap if you work NZst.

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  6. fatman43us (164 comments) says:

    Rebelheart – it’s called principle. Peter’s was using Children as pawns in his political game. I applaud the decision to send the money back to the scroats in NZ First. I agree the only one with any sense of homour is Ron Mark.

    Bale out Ron! They’re going down in flames – either tyhat or throw Winnie and Woollerton to the wolves. You may stand some small chance on your own, but don’t hold your breath – you’ve left it very late!

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  7. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “[DPF: Umm on what basis do you estimate the 2002 so called pledge card cost $500,000?]”

    DPF, I will accept on trust any figure you name which covers the taxpayer cost for printing and distribution. I assume you have access to this data and given your well known enthusiasm for accountability for taxpayer’s funds I have no doubt you will be as eager as I to see it public.

    I note that you dont dispute that the 2002 pledge card fails the test the AG applied in 2005.

    Hence the money was misappropriated.

    [DPF: Well here is the funny thing. I don’t even recall the 2002 pledge card. And yes I worked in Bill’s office at the time. Whether it fails the AG test would depend on the wording, and when it was published. So how come I can’t recall the pledge card? Well my assumption is that it was a pretty minor publication – not the centrepiece of the campaign like Labour’s was – and it was so minor it did not register with me. Labour printed 1.5 million and posted one to every home. I don’t know but I suspect National probably only had a few ten thousand printed for a fairly minor cost of a few thousand.

    And I have no access to the data. What I would be willing to bet though is that if you did extend the AG test back to the 2002 election also, Labour’s debt would again be a magnitude larger than National’s]

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  8. John Ansell (842 comments) says:

    DPF: ‘Umm on what basis do you estimate the 2002 so called pledge card cost $500,000?’

    natural party of govt: ‘DPF, I will accept on trust any figure you name’.

    In other words, you made it up.

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  9. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “Well here is the funny thing. I don’t even recall the 2002 pledge card. ”

    LOL, that is one of the most inadvertantly funny things written here.

    Nobody from National can recall the pledge card.

    “And I have no access to the data.”

    Why not? I thought you were that great believer in open government? Surely the National Party isnt going to hide from the taxpayers what it does with their money?

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  10. Craig Ranapia (1,301 comments) says:

    NPoG:

    Could you save us all a lot of time, and just post a direct link to the Labour Party talking points you’re regurgitating ad nauseum at any given time? And since you’re going to dismiss DPF as a liar whenever he doesn’t say exactly what you want to hear, why even pretend you’re interested in any kind of dialogue?

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  11. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    ” And since you’re going to dismiss DPF as a liar whenever he doesn’t say exactly what you want to hear, why even pretend you’re interested in any kind of dialogue?”

    How can I dismiss someone as a liar who says he knows nothing?

    I am sure the figure is available from Head Office and when DPF comes back with not one but two qualifiers “but I suspect National probably” then we all know what that means.

    Put up the 2002 card cost or shut up.

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  12. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    Put up the 2002 card cost or shut up.

    your argument to start with. So if you can’t put up an argument then I suggest you shut up now and stop embarrassing yourself.

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  13. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    Something went wrong with the HTML tags. That should have said: This was your argument to start with.

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  14. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    Peak Oil Conspiracy – as a taxpayer don’t you believe the parties should be absolutely accountable and transparent about how they spend our money?

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  15. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    Yes, of course.

    But, with respect, that’s a distraction. Your argument was that National’s pledge card in 2002 cost $500,000. Frankly, like DPF, I can’t even remember the pledge card – but even if there was one, and I’m happy to see any links you’ve got, you’re the one saying it cost $500,000. And people have asked you repeatedly now to substantiate the allegation.

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  16. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “Peak Oil Conspiracy – as a taxpayer don’t you believe the parties should be absolutely accountable and transparent about how they spend our money?”

    “NPOG:

    Yes, of course.”

    So DPF, that is two voices demanding that National release an exact accounting of its spending of taxpayers’ money – including the 2002 pledge card.

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  17. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    Your selective quoting is worse than Sonic – how about addressing the substantive part of my comment?

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  18. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    Hold that DPF, might just be one voice after all.

    “Your selective quoting is worse than Sonic”

    I am sorry, do you or do you think that spending of Parliamentary services allocations should be totally transparent so that the taxpayer can see exactly what his/her money is spent on?

    You seem to be unsure on this one.

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  19. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    This historical account may be of some interest to you:

    “We understand that the original rationale for not including the Parliamentary Service Commission and Parliamentary Service [in the OIA] was that it was considered constitutionally inappropriate to cover them, since they did not form part of the Executive. However, that rationale now holds less weight because other bodies are now covered which are not part of the Executive, such as the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment. We also note that the Parliamentary Service Commission (although not the Parliamentary Service) is covered by the Ombudsmen Act 1975 which is also concerned with promoting the accountability of public bodies.”

    http://www.knowledge-basket.co.nz/privacy/people/parlsb.html

    Let’s take stock of this thread (insofar as it concerns you):

    You made an allegation. You were challenged repeatedly to substantiate it. You haven’t. Then you’ve shifted gears and said it’s National’s fault for not giving you the information.

    Now, if you want political parties to disclose every single item of spending, then that’s something to be applied across the board. But that’s another debate entirely.

    We’re still waiting for you to substantiate your original allegation. Any chance of that happening?

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  20. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    Dont you see the irony of national party insiders loudly denoucing one estimate but coyly refusing to name the real figure.

    And remember who provided National with this money which they refuse to disclose?

    WE DID!

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  21. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    So you admit your original allegation was made up? You had no basis for it?

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  22. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “So you admit your original allegation was made up?”

    Not in the slightest. Even DPF admits there was a pledgecard, his point is that “I don’t know but I suspect National probably only had a few ten thousand printed”

    Frankly, from a person who claims to be an advocate of open and transparent government that is not good enough.

    He worked in the Leader of the Opposition’s office at the time. Let him demand from his former colleagues how much taxpayers’ money Bill English spent on producing and distributing the pledge card.

    And then why don’t we here and at National Party Head Office have a whip around and pay that sum to the Starship.

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  23. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    Even DPF admits there was a pledgecard

    Now you’re spinning. DPF’s words:

    Well here is the funny thing. I don’t even recall the 2002 pledge card. And yes I worked in Bill’s office at the time. Whether it fails the AG test would depend on the wording, and when it was published. So how come I can’t recall the pledge card?

    The original allegation was yours. You’re now complaining that DPF doesn’t get information to support your allegation. But this is deflecting – it’s your allegation to prove. Again, any chance of that happening?

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  24. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    So are you denying there was a pledge card now?

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  25. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    I’ve just realised how selectively you quoted DPF.

    You say:

    Even DPF admits there was a pledgecard, his point is that “I don’t know but I suspect National probably only had a few ten thousand printed”

    DPF said:

    Well my assumption is that it was a pretty minor publication – not the centrepiece of the campaign like Labour’s was – and it was so minor it did not register with me. Labour printed 1.5 million and posted one to every home. I don’t know but I suspect National probably only had a few ten thousand printed for a fairly minor cost of a few thousand.

    Notice how you stopped at “only had a few ten thousand printed” and forgot to mention “for a fairly minor cost of a few thousand”?

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  26. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    You say there was a pledge card. You say it cost $500,000. Yet again I ask: evidence please. Chop chop.

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  27. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    Do you accept there was a pledge card or not?

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  28. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    It doesn’t matter what I accept. You’ve made an allegation. Neither DPF nor I (nor, as far as I can tell, anyone else who’s contributed to this thread) can verify your claim. Surely you can substantiate it?

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  29. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “It doesn’t matter what I accept. You’ve made an allegation.”

    Honestly, I don’t think the fact that Bill English had a pledge card in 2002 paid for by Parliamentary Services is an allegation but a matter of historical record.

    Do you also think the Treaty of Waitangi is an allegation?

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  30. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    Honestly, I don’t think the fact that Bill English had a pledge card in 2002 paid for by Parliamentary Services is an allegation but a matter of historical record.

    Excellent – so you can provide a link then? And then perhaps you can sort out that awkward business about it costing $500,000? Oh, and Do you also think the Treaty of Waitangi is an allegation is, as Craig Ranapia would say, a weapon of mass distraction. Let’s focus on your allegation about the cost of a pledge card.

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  31. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “Excellent – so you can provide a link then? ”

    Knock yourself out
    http://www.google.com.au/search?hl=de&q=%22Bill+English%22+2002+pledge+card&meta=

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  32. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    I could knock myself out. There’s much to ponder in that link. It defaults to Google Australia – but the default language isn’t English.

    But none of that has anything to do with your original allegation: Bill English had a pledge card which cost $500,000.

    Which specific link should I click to find that information?

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  33. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    ” There’s much to ponder in that link”

    Well, try not to stay up to late pondering it.

    “But none of that has anything to do with your original allegation: Bill English had a pledge card which cost $500,000.

    Which specific link should I click to find that information?”

    http://www.national.org.nz/GetInvolved/contactus.aspx

    Say you are a mate of DPF and a strong believer in transparent spending of taxpayers funds.

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  34. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    So you still can’t substantiate that $500,000 figure? Surely you can admit to making it up?

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  35. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    Tick tick boom…?

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  36. hinamanu (1,129 comments) says:

    Flabbergasted!!

    I would not have predicted this outcome in a thousand years.

    No one gives money back, particularly that amount.

    Or perhaps that amount was the reason.

    Winston is swearing, if not audibly, internally.

    He would not have guessed in a thousand years they would give the money back. Now no charitable org will have the stomach to accept the donation.

    I would suggest the Mormons. You can be an elder there in 5 mins flat if you have the finance.

    Which leaves the q of the 158. Its burning Winstons hands, he can’t hold it. I believe the words accountability and integrity will be missing from his campaign speeches next year.

    The campaign over all is just going to be huge fun to listen to as the commies try to make us forget they have been stripping us of our fundamental democratic voice and plying us with the honeyed tones of tax cuts they told us never to expect to hear.

    Incredible, absolutely incredible!

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  37. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “Tick tick boom…?”

    You’ll have to excuse me. Although I was posting during daylight hours and not in the small hours of the morning even I do not spend all day (let alone night) on kiwiblog.

    The figure that National spent on the pledge card is for them to reveal and refund – since they seem so convinced they misappropriated it.

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  38. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    I’ll take that as an admission that you can’t prove this allegation:

    For example if Bill English, who misappropriate 500 000 dollars in 2002 to pay for a pledge card, donates to the Starship, should they also return that?

    It was your allegation – hence it is not for National to reveal and refund.

    I suggest you admit to telling lies and stop digging.

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  39. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “It was your allegation – hence it is not for National to reveal and refund.”

    Yes it is, it is my money.

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  40. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    Yes it is, it is my money.

    So where’s your proof that National spent $500,000? Oh that’s right, you made it up.

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  41. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “So where’s your proof that National spent $500,000? Oh that’s right, you made it up.”

    The dispute is not whether National misappropriated the money according to the AG’s definition.

    The issue is how much.

    I think the National Party owes us both, and the taxpayers of New Zealand whose money they stole, an answer.

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  42. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    The issue is how much.

    You can’t even admit to plucking a figure ($500,000) out of the air? Why’s that too hard for you?

    … and the taxpayers of New Zealand whose money they stole…

    Didn’t we establish the other night that the spending is now retrospectively legalised? So it’s surely a non-issue, courtesy of Labour.

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  43. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    “You can’t even admit to plucking a figure ($500,000) out of the air? Why’s that too hard for you?”

    Why doesnt National and DPF as one of their backroom boys stump up with the figure.

    Don’t you want to know?

    “Didn’t we establish the other night that the spending is now retrospectively legalised? ”

    Except National hold this is unprincipled and unethical.

    So I call on them to be principled and ethical.

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  44. natural party of govt (283 comments) says:

    Incidently POC, do you post from NZ?

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  45. Peak Oil Conspiracy (3,985 comments) says:

    NPOG:

    Right. So we’ve now established that you made up the $500,000 figure.
    And that you’d like National to reveal the actual figure. An obvious question arises: have you tried asking them?

    If you could bring yourself to move beyond the National smeer-job, there’s actually a broader issue: what disclosure regime (if any) should govern spending by political parties of their Parliamentary Services allocations?

    Seeing as you clearly support a disclosure regime, one wonders how it’d operate in practical terms. Why? Because any such regime wouldn’t just apply to National – even though you’re interested in a particular item of National’s historical spending. Should a political party (or Parliamentary Services) be required to answer every whimsical question from a member of the public? Should there be minimum monetary amounts involved so, for example, one can’t require disclosure of stationery costs (Bic pens and pencil sharpeners) – disclosing this sort of information would be a wasteful use of resources.

    I don’t pretend to have ready answers to hand – but you’ve no doubt thought this through more fully. It’d make for a much more constructive debate than National did this, Labour did that.

    Incidently POC, do you post from NZ?

    No. But hopefully you won’t claim this disqualifies me from informed debate – I like to think I follow NZ politics very closely, even if one perhaps loses some of the subtlety from an overseas vantage point.

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