Labour Party President adds to the muck raking

January 15th, 2011 at 9:22 am by David Farrar

Newstalk ZB reports:

EPMU secretary thinks sealing the mine would be wrong on at least two fronts.

“Making a decision to seal the mine now is not just a decision to leave the men down there, but a decision to say we’re not going to get the evidence to find out what really happened.”

Mr Little said the Government has let the families down and the union will continue to work with them to get justice.

Does Andrew have some magic way to enter the mine we do not know of?

Is Andrew speaking as Labour Party President or EPMU Secretary when he alleges any decision to seal the mine is part of a plot by the Government to conceal evidence?

The local Mayor is more rational:

Despite the union’s concerns, the Grey District Mayor said he is confident there will be enough evidence for the mine inquiry, even if the mine is sealed.

“They’re going to interview 400 (people) all up. They’ve got every single hard drive and computer from day one of Pike River coal. Even though they can’t get evidence from the mine, I feel there’s enough evidence out there to get to the bottom of this”, Tony Kokshoorn told Newstalk ZB.

Maybe Andrew could explain exactly what evidence he thinks still exists after weeks of thousand degree fires.

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114 Responses to “Labour Party President adds to the muck raking”

  1. pdm (842 comments) says:

    Based on what I have read in the last 24 hours I suggest Little and Mallard go down the mine and have a look round to see if it is safe. They shouldn’t need any protective gear as the hot air they generate will clear things up..

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  2. thedavincimode (6,691 comments) says:

    Perhaps he’s speaking as the Labour leader-in-waiting. Quite out of character, Gaffey seems to be keeping his trap shut on this one. Or is it that he’s just waiting to see which way the wind blows so he doesn’t put his foot in it again? More likely the latter.

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  3. bhudson (4,738 comments) says:

    This approach and their statements will get them as much traction as oil on an iced over pond would.

    Eejits the pair of them. Better for us if they dont realise it though.

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  4. mawm (211 comments) says:

    What a surprise………another commie politician using other’s personal tragedey for his own benefit. Scum!

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  5. gravedodger (1,552 comments) says:

    Unadulterated attention grabbing amongst the raw nerves of the recently dead miner’s families, friends and supporters.
    How many underground miners with experience realistically expected any other outcome.
    The very dramatic and successful Chilean rescue with totally unrelated problems of gas, fire and explosions created an entirely unrealistic expectation aura among the uninformed.
    Mayor Kockshorn is the voice of reason here and Little is rolling in the misery and feelings of the bereaved for cynical political ends.
    Tomb robber comes to mind

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  6. BeaB (2,118 comments) says:

    Labour really can be sickening in its opportunism and cynicism.

    I wonder when the ‘working class’ will realise old Labour has long gone and the new party is made up of middle-class careerists whose main objectives are power and spending other people’s money.

    Didn’t you just love that photo of Helen Clark arriving at the tennis in a chauffeur-driven limousine? So when we hear Mallard and Little and silly old Phil, we know it’s the power not the influence they are really after.

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  7. Pete George (23,474 comments) says:

    Labour have said one of the key tasks of an opposition party is to hold the government to account. That to an extent is correct, but they seem to have missed a key rule – pick your fights.

    And another – if you come across as petty and petulant and poxy you end up with piss poor poll results.

    Goff has commented on it.

    Labour leader Phil Goff has questioned the reasons Mr Key gave, saying rescuers and police had told families only the day before that the machine was making some progress on neutralising the volatile gases and high temperatures in the mine.

    “We all knew it would take some time so why was it suddenly stopped now? There haven’t been answers to such questions.”

    Little belittles himself.

    The next few years don’t look promising for Labour, too many negative nincompoops. A few fringe bleaters on blogs like the Standard trying to wave a flag for Labour are perhaps understandable, but for the leader, supposedly prospective leader and senior MP to demean themselves on such a sad and tragic thing is hard to understand.

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  8. Inventory2 (10,291 comments) says:

    thedavincimode said

    Quite out of character, Gaffey seems to be keeping his trap shut on this one.

    Not so, and here’s the video, from Labour’s YouTube channel. Goff, Mallard and Little are all singing from the same songbook.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/NZLabour

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  9. Graeme Edgeler (3,283 comments) says:

    Is Andrew speaking as Labour Party President or EPMU Secretary when he alleges any decision to seal the mine is part of a plot by the Government to conceal evidence?

    At all times Andrew is speaking as both. And as the the Labour candidate for New Plymouth. That’s just how it works.

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  10. thedavincimode (6,691 comments) says:

    Thanks I2.

    I’m delighted to be put right. The world is restored to equilibrium.

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  11. Put it away (2,878 comments) says:

    Just when you thought the left has stuck rock bottom, there’s always a new low they’re prepared to go to.

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  12. thedavincimode (6,691 comments) says:

    There is no rock bottom. It is just a continuum of space time slime.

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  13. Pongo (371 comments) says:

    You have to wonder about the stupidity of the Labour trio on this, there is a huge amount of goodwill and generosity to the poor families and the coast but that could dissapate very very quickly. The spokesperson for the families annoyed me no end, I can put it down to grief at the moment but I will loose my sense of humour if I see him bleating in the news for the next 6 months (no doubt having his strings pulled by Labour for their own ends).

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  14. Michael (904 comments) says:

    I’m sure the families are happy for Labour to try and score points over this. I think they’d rather get more information about what has happened post-accident that has lead to the police to say recovery of the remains is not possible.

    I see Mallard is now trying to say that is his position, which doesn’t fit with what he said initially which was Key had broken a promise to do everything possible to retreive the bodies.

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  15. Paulus (2,607 comments) says:

    Every time Little Andrew he opens his mouth stupidity flows forth.

    I used to think he must have some intelligence to lead the EPMU, but he continues to confirm he has not.

    Poor Labour Party – he and Trevor make a good pair.

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  16. mawm (211 comments) says:

    Michael – There is going to be an inquiry and they will then get all the information available. The commie politicians trying to score points need to STFU and let the process take its course.

    I’ve never met a lie the left hasn’t been prepared to tell.

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  17. Pete George (23,474 comments) says:

    What would be worse for the families, making every effort possible for months, then calling it quits when it doesn’t look likely they can achieve a recovery, or continuing a futile attempt at recovery?

    The Standard have itemised supposed lies from Key.

    Key’s lying. Here are a few examples of what he said:

    “the government would give whatever support is required”*
    “for as long as it’s a recovery, we’ll be paying the bill”*
    “It’s clearly been a large sum of money. But at the end of the day I gave a commitment to the families at Pike River I’d do everything I could to get their men out, I stand by that”*
    “We are doing everything we can, and we will continue to, within the constraints of safety.”*

    They don’t actually demonstrate what the “lies” were, nor do any of these sound like “promises”.

    Labour leaders and lackeys alike – sad to see them still sinking.

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  18. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,887 comments) says:

    I’m intrigued to know by what process Mr Goff proposes to ‘neutralize’ high temperatures.

    Are these temperatures highly acidic?

    Surely the incompetent idiot actually meant to say ‘lower’ the high temperatures?

    The same might be said for volatile gases. How does one go about ‘neutralizing’ methane? What form of interesting chemistry is brought into play?

    Doesn’t the fool really mean to say ‘dissipate’ volatile gases.

    How can anyone entrust the running of the country to a bunch of crooks who also are demonstrably illiterate?

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  19. mawm (211 comments) says:

    Adolf – “are demonstrably illiterate?”

    “Demonstrably uneducated” would be a better description.

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  20. Yvette (2,776 comments) says:

    Pike River miners head to Australia
    Up to 50 redundant Pike River Coal mine employees could soon be crossing the Tasman to take up lucrative positions in Australian pits. [...] “About 50 of us sat medicals and provided our CVs for a recruitment company about a week ago. I start on January 17.”

    – NZPA 06|01|2011

    Here is a group of men, ‘close to the coal-face’ so to speak, who had decided that the Pike River Mine will not be a safe place to work in any time soon.
    Perhaps the Unions and Labour [pretty much the same thing] should take note of this.

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  21. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    “They don’t actually demonstrate what the “lies” were, nor do any of these sound like “promises”.

    Labour leaders and lackeys alike – sad to see them still sinking.”

    Jesus Petty/Saul/Paul!

    I will have to start calling you Petey. :)

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  22. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Adolf: :) :)

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  23. scrubone (3,095 comments) says:

    I’m intrigued to know by what process Mr Goff proposes to ‘neutralize’ high temperatures.

    A rousing speech (Obama style) of course! What, you want some other sort of solution?

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  24. scrubone (3,095 comments) says:

    But more seriously, does this mean that Little (The Standard writer mentioned above, Goff et al) is/are actually now keen for an open-cast mine in a National Park? Seems to me that’d be the only way to get these men out.

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  25. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Only if the excavator drivers were paid the same rates as assistant Sextons and entitled to biohazard bonus rates when the diggings got near to the present mines level scrubone. :)

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  26. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    There would of course be an additional payment for having to work in the unpredictable fresh air of a National Park more than 20 km from a pub. :)

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  27. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,887 comments) says:

    Labour wants the bodies brought our because they need their votes later in the year.

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  28. Pete George (23,474 comments) says:

    Adolf, that’s uncalled for, not funny nor based on any reasonable assumptions. I think a retraction and apology – at least to the dead men’s families – would be appropriate.

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  29. Shunda barunda (2,977 comments) says:

    But more seriously, does this mean that Little (The Standard writer mentioned above, Goff et al) is/are actually now keen for an open-cast mine in a National Park? Seems to me that’d be the only way to get these men out.

    Sadly that would not be possible, punch into those old workings and all you will have is a massive above ground (or in pit) fireball to kill some more miners.
    That part of the mine will likely be sealed forever and any new workings will avoid the area like the plague.

    A new operator will likely seek to stabilise the 2km tunnel, (which is currently the most expensive part of remaining infrastructure), and form a new pit bottom to either side of the current workings.
    An underground void full of gas is very hard to reopen.

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  30. noskire (839 comments) says:

    Seriously, who are the muppets in Labour that think it’s a good idea to try and gain political traction out of the Pike Mine tragedy. It really does just astound me.

    Are they that desperate that they will take a swing at anything to get media coverage?

    Are they that cynical?

    Did they learn nothing from the thumping that they got at the last election?

    I am really starting to think that their are some elements in the upper-echelons of the Labour hierarchy that are border-line delusional, or mad…or maybe both.

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  31. Put it away (2,878 comments) says:

    Pete – “nor based on any reasonable assumptions.”

    I think the assumption that labour is going to need every vote they can get is an extremely reasonable assumption.

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  32. Put it away (2,878 comments) says:

    noskire – they had the H-bomb last time, now they’re pinning their hopes on the methane bomb. All they will get out of that is a funny smell around them.

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  33. jaba (2,136 comments) says:

    I have said for years that Little wants to be, and indeed will be, a future (not too long) Labour leader .. and ultimately PM. Until recently I have thought he was a shoe in. Over the past few months he has proved that he is in fact a typical labour fkwit.
    as said above .. pick your fights Andrew, this is not one UNLESS it is solely as a Union Leader and this is the problem with trying to do both these jobs AND run for MP for NP (Goff will then be his boss).
    and what has a Nat Govt got to hide, this crazy mine was created under a Labour Govt

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  34. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    If you are hoping to chop their heads off (Little) soon it is always a good plan to egg the retards (Goofy/Mallard) on. :)

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  35. Dyannt (28 comments) says:

    I’m intrigued by the continued mantra from some politicians that the families and friends need the bodies back to have closure.
    Obviously, from the news that miners are preparing to shift to Australia to work in the mines would indicate that not a few of them have faced reality and are getting on with their lives.
    Many people lose family members (eg at sea, in mountains, rivers) and never know their whereabouts. At least the bereaved in Greymouth know exactly where their family members are.

    After all this time, my thoughts go to the men who would be required to find, pick up and carry out any remains, if the mine was re-opened. Not something I could live with for the rest of my life.

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  36. Inventory2 (10,291 comments) says:

    It’s all DPF’s fault now …

    http://thestandard.org.nz/farrars-pike-river-smears/

    Once the left has to resort to smearing a blogger, you’d have to conclude that there is a certain level of desperation because none of the mud thrown at Key has stuck.

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  37. BeaB (2,118 comments) says:

    The whole idea of closure is a crock and the media and others should drop this tiresome cliche. Those of us who have lost loved ones know the grief goes on forever, wherever they are buried or scattered or disappeared. The govt or police or unions certainly can’t ‘bring closure’. Those families will mourn their men for the rest of their lives just as some of us still mourn miners lost in the Strongman Mine.

    Labour need to move away quickly from this one. Key has been an exemplary leader in a time of tragedy, Brownlee has been a rock, the police have gone above and beyond, we have a Royal Commission to investigate things fully, ACC and donations to help families – there is little more that can be done – or needs to be done.

    This is not an issue to make political capital out of. I am amazed at Goff’s clumsiness and tin ear. This is a time to be a statesman not an opportunist. Andy Pandy we can perhaps excuse as he is desperate to get his name in lights and doesn’t care about who he tramples over to do it. Mallard, sadly, is beyond redemption.

    John Key must smile to himself every time they try to take a crack at him. Labour’s problem is that we believe what we see and hear from our PM and know from experience what a lying, rorting mob the Labour elite has turned out to be.

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  38. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    BeaB: Well bloody said!!

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  39. Pete George (23,474 comments) says:

    I agree on “closure” BeaB, it has always seemed a nonsensical term to me. You never get “closure” if you experience a tragedy or someone close to you dies. In this case it’s especially ridiculous. It’s hard on the families but it would be hard on them regardless. If the ashen remains of bodies could be recovered from underground and then buried underground or cremated what the heck would that close?

    Labour are trying to divert from the bodies and are claiming that evidence must be recovered – at what price? Of more lives? Some are even claiming National are deliberately stopping recovery to keep evidence hidden. For every nutter on the fringe of the right there’s a crackpot on the fringe of the left.

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  40. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Petey……..Mate!!!! :)

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  41. Put it away (2,878 comments) says:

    It took a few days, but I think the leftards finally realised how bad they looked calling for more lives to be risked to recover the teeth of the miners, so now they’re pretending to be interested in “evidence”. Realising they look just as bad calling for more lives to be lost to find “evidence” just to score political points about a non-existent coverup, next they will claim they are only trying to find what happened in order to improve mine safety or somesuch. Fuck’s sake, they’re as bad as the “All Sarah Palin’s fault” tragedy-exploiters in the US. Conscience-free scum.

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  42. V (701 comments) says:

    Don’t worry Andrew Little is a mining expert in disguise as a union/party organiser.

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  43. Yvette (2,776 comments) says:

    [ http://www.youtube.com/user/NZLabour – as an aside: can Labour not afford a bloody tripod for their camera - the shot is as shakey as the Leader is in the stance he takes. Well, appropriate I guess. And why use a shot that ends with some jerk opening a fake looking door behind you?
    But I shouldn't really be saying this - just let it subconsciously add to the crap view people have of Labour in almost everything they do. Sorry, sloppy camera shots just upset me - merde! but it is Labour ]

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  44. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Shakey+jerk = Wankers. You’re on to it Yvette. :)

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  45. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,887 comments) says:

    “For every nutter on the fringe of the right there’s a crackpot on the fringe of the left.”

    No that’s not true.

    For every nutter on the fringe of the right there’s a crackpot at the centre of the left.

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  46. jaba (2,136 comments) says:

    just saw that bizarre interview Yvette .. not sure who that was for?

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  47. WebWrat (516 comments) says:

    They are grippers … too stupid to even wank.

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  48. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Are you still flying high WW. :)

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  49. GNZ2 (18 comments) says:

    The police and the government have done everything reasonable and more to get those bodies back – In faact they should have given up some time ago and not wasted money on a futile task. But Now that thay have called it off it irks me to hear some stupid politicians trying to score points by demanding we go back in there and get the bodies.

    why dont they stump up the hundreds of thousands of dollars a day to run the operation and then they can crawl into the mine in order to get killed by another explosion…

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  50. GNZ2 (18 comments) says:

    Pongo,
    mmm… I agree.
    At my work a collection of pretty middle of the road voters most people appear to be behind the call to call off getting the bodies and, not yet, but are ready, to run out of paitience so I suspect that is the wider view.

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  51. Put it away (2,878 comments) says:

    Thread been going all day and none of the usual lefty suspects have popped their head up to defend this? Not a single one.

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  52. WebWrat (516 comments) says:

    Not at the moment Johnboy … need to do my medical.

    Put it away. Funny that!

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  53. noskire (839 comments) says:

    I’ll take the demerit DPF, heck even ban me, but Labour really are a bunch of fucking cunts.

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  54. Inventory2 (10,291 comments) says:

    @ PIA; they’re all too busy stroking one another’s egos at The Standard. The ox-wagons are circling, and Labour lackeys are hunkering down for the inevitable storm of criticism over Goff, Mallard and Little’s insensitivity.

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  55. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Hell I wish I could pass one WW. Its been twenty years since I last drove a plane.

    Went for a trip with Arthur and Chris from ACT recently before the bloody Murris shafted them completely.

    Nothing shot but good time had by all three generations of my Whanau.

    We are all looking forward to Gerald Te Heu Heu’s first attempted landing. :)

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  56. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Noskire: Try ” intercoursing vulvas”.

    Could save you a few points. :)

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  57. Dazzaman (1,138 comments) says:

    Littles a left wing prick. He needs no basis in fact,….as we’ve seen with the nonsensical, faux, irrational blaming of the right for the Tucson slayings in the States, leftists just need to speak….and it becomes truth.

    Lying innuendo is part of their MO, haven’t youse worked that one out already?

    After weeks of blast furnace temps, there is nothing left….the decision is correct.

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  58. Blue Coast (165 comments) says:

    Just a small point here. The mine has been on fire for a long period at 1000 + degrees. What the F**k are you going to recover. Even if they get in the chances of finding enough evidence to provide a positive ID is remote.

    To keep spending $10k + per hour to recover nothing is hardly a worthwhile effort.

    Broad the plod was too gutless to say the mine and recovery is f***ked. It took John Key to front up and tell the truth.

    3 hats Little is talking shit as usual.

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  59. DJP6-25 (1,376 comments) says:

    Nobody should be surprised when leftists behave true to form.

    cheers

    David Prosser

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  60. tvb (4,360 comments) says:

    The Labour Party needs the votes of the dead miners, they have every right to vote and anyone else.

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  61. noskire (839 comments) says:

    Johnboy: It doesn’t have the same ring to it I’m afraid. However I wouldn’t be surprised if some Labour lackey had managed to find some funding for an adult evening course in Intercoursing Vulvas and the Subsequent Affect on Bovine Migration.

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  62. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    “Johnboy: It doesn’t have the same ring to it ”

    Well that’s a bloody matter of opinion of course! :)

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  63. noskire (839 comments) says:

    Johnboy: Agreed, and luckily we’re all still entitled to one. Goodnight, off to slaughter some commies on Counter-Strike.

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  64. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    Does Andrew have some magic way to enter the mine we do not know of?

    The local Mayor is more rational…

    So the score so far, according to DPF and many commenters:

    A country cop whose experience encompasses the supervision of traffic fines, RBTs and the odd burglary is an expert on mine rescues and recoveries and subsequent investigations.

    A Mayor (who, I might add, did a sterling job as spokesperson for the families and in dealing with the media during the tragedy) is somehow also an expert.

    But a union leader – amongst whose members are engineers and actual miners – is speaking through his arse.

    Right then, just so we know which self-appointerd experts to listen to and which to ignore. Personally I’d be inclined to take the word of the international experts made available to NZ by Australia and other countries which have actually carried out mine rescue and recovery operations, and ignore all of the above. But oh well…

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  65. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,887 comments) says:

    “Adolf, that’s uncalled for, not funny nor based on any reasonable assumptions.”

    Pete George, why don’t you run along and give the same advice to Little and Goff?

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  66. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Andrew doesn’t actually know which end of a piece of coal you insert in the fire first Rex.

    He is a fucking Lawyer FFS.

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  67. slightlyrighty (2,471 comments) says:

    Rex.

    Your “Country Cop” is an expert in rescue operations. He may not be an expert vis-a-vis mining but he knows where to go to to obtain that expertise, and he has done what would appear to be a good job in getting the needed resources where they should be. His job is the management of resources and personnel.

    Tony Kokshoorn would also have been breifed by the very rescue experts which would have been organised by the very “country cop” you choose to deride.

    Now these 2 men, acting on the information no doubt given to them by the very experts conducting the rescue, have the uneviable job of informing the families of this outcome, which nobody wanted, and you seem content to rely on the word of someone informed by rumour, and may well be motiviated by political leanings?

    Where has Andrew Little been getting his breifings from?

    Like you, I’d be more inclined to take the word of the international mine rescue experts, and with that in mind, ask yourself who the hell have they been breifing. The Policeman in charge of co-ordinating the rescue and the local mayor, or the president of the Labour Party?

    I thought you were smarter than this Rex.

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  68. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    So did I SR!

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  69. thedavincimode (6,691 comments) says:

    FFS Rex. That is likely the most stupid thing you’ve ever said. Do you think he was consulting a magic 8 ball?

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  70. hmmokrightitis (1,586 comments) says:

    Wow Rex, me too, WTF were you thinking, thats just plain dumb really. :(

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  71. Bob (496 comments) says:

    I’m disappointed in Andrew Little. I thought he was more sensible and fair minded. Members of the Labour Party seem to hate Key and National so much they will say anything they can think of to score a point. All it does is show how shallow they are.

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  72. lofty (1,310 comments) says:

    Widerstrom…still spouting bollocks on this subject!! uninformed expert, the worlds full of them.

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  73. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    Johnboy:

    Admittedly I’m assuming he’s consulted his members before speaking. Not only is that the common sense thing to do, it’s also his job. Nonetheless I include him in the list of “self appointed experts” because unless any of the miners available to advise him have worked in a similar situation (i.e. a collapsed mine) they’re working on assumptions, albeit educated ones.

    However, unlike cops and mayors (and National Party bloggers and their commenters, me included), some EPMU members have actually been down a mine. If Andrew is speaking based on what they’ve told him then his words have at least as much credibility as anyone else involved.

    The point on which I agree with DPF is that it’s hard to tell what hat he’s wearing when he speaks. He has a duty to reflect the views of EPMU members; some of those members and miners and some, it seems, worked or work at Pike River. However he sets himself up for accusations of political grandstanding, whether deseved or not, every time he opens his mouth on a union issue. He should give up one job or the other… and given that he’s now indelibly aligned with the Labour Party in the mind of the public (moreso than with the union, I mean) he should stand aside at the EPMU.

    slightlyrighty:

    You (and the majority of commenters here) and I will have to agree to disagree on the aptitude and attitude of the officer in charge of the operation. I still maintain he took upon himself decisions he was not qualified to make. Granted he may have been receiving expert advice but at no point has a) the source of such advice been clearly identified and b) confirmed that the police acted in accordance with that advice.

    The inquiry will no doubt clear up – hopefully – some of those issues. Till then, both our positions are essentially nothing more than slightly-informed opinion.

    Lofty:

    Clearly you don’t even properly understand what “the subject” is. Why am I not surprised.

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  74. lofty (1,310 comments) says:

    Widerstrom…”slighty-informed”.
    Glad you finally admitted to it Widerstrom, now may well be the time to back off from your “slighty-informed” opinions.

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  75. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Little is just another leftie aparatchik Rex.

    I applaud your reasoned but stupid approach in trying to justify his having any credibility at all because some of his union members may have been down a mine.

    I have dealt with similar more lowly apparatchiks from his sad little union. They were all scum.

    Fortunately I have managed to dispose of the EMU’s union from my place of employment. They won’t be missed.

    Little is a turd and he and the Labour party really deserve each other.

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  76. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    Lofty, the whole point of the discussion is whether Mr Plod, Mr Mayor, Mr Little, me or anyone here knows more than the average person on this issue (whether the cause of the Pike River disaster will now be discovered as a result of attempts to enter it being abandoned).

    I admit I don’t. I do, however, make the point that Andrew Little has amongst his members people who, being actual miners and engineers might have a better idea than Mr Plod. As for Mr Mayor, he has the same advantage as Mr Little – contact with people who actually know what they’re talking about.

    So I question why DPF dismisses the opinion of one person who has access to mining expertise (but isn’t a miner) while lauding that of another person who has access to mining expertise (but isn’t a miner).

    Alrthough he pretty vehemently disagrees (but does so without insult) I see Johnboy comprehends the point I’m making… but then Johnboy is literate.

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  77. jims_whare (403 comments) says:

    To be honest I doubt there are bodies or even bones left down there. With the high temps of the coal fire surely they would have been burnt to dust weeks ago? Cremation. Sad but yeah no point putting the fire out to find nothing but burnt ashes.

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  78. Pete George (23,474 comments) says:

    Rex, “Mr Plod” has been much closer to the coal face (and experts) than “Mr Mayor”, who has had quite a mixed record – he seemed to be flying by the seat of his pants in front of cameras and was even filmed for a documentary while it was all going on. At one stage, just before the second explosion, he announced rescuers were going in to the mine, he either had bad advice or jumped to conclusions.

    As for Little, well, it depends on which experts he listens too the most, EPMU mining experts, political PR “experts”, polling experts or Labour leaders.

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  79. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    “but then Johnboy is literate.”

    I become fucking illiterate very fucking quickly when I get fucking unionists in my fucking sights I might fucking add!!!!!

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  80. reid (16,290 comments) says:

    Personally I think the real story here is this was an entirely predictable reaction from the Liarbore Party and there is clearly no reaction from the Nats in anticipation of it, which seems to mean the Nats were surprised about it as in ambushed and when that happens in this arena, you look to the person in charge of this sort of thing, which is Kevin Taylor, the PM’s spin meister.

    Like I said, entirely predictable.

    So when this policy launch was being planned within the DPMC, what the fucking fuckity fuck, was Kev doing, right about then?

    If it wasn’t entirely predictable, this would have been OK, some things aren’t. But this was. It was obviously one of the contingencies anyone except an incompetent spinmeister would plan for and have something ready to go, when it happened. If his response is in Sunday’s papers, it’s too late. It should have been in todays.

    Credit: Whale’s posts on Kevin Taylor for putting me onto this incompetent fellow.

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  81. lofty (1,310 comments) says:

    No no no..Rex you are not getting away with it so easily, I have followed your comments loosley on this issue over the whole time of this incident.

    You drop little innuendos about me being illiterate etc, and if you want to take a biff at me just use plain language Rex, I am a very big boy, but I know what you have said on this blog.

    I remember you wanting the back country copper to thrust rescue workers into the mine to do the “thing”.

    It beggars belief that you think that the “copper” on the ground did not also have access to mining expertise and made considered decisions based on the information from those experts. (or as you call him..Mr Plod)

    It is interesting that you now say (whether the cause of the Pike River disaster will now be discovered as a result of attempts to enter it being abandoned). you admit that you don’t know.

    But your opinion during the early days was much more staunch, shall we say.

    I am sorry Rex but you are out of your depth here.

    Me, I have a knowledge of these things that is obviously much deeper than yours.

    And as my final word I would say this, please feel free to take up a civil action to enter the mine and pull out whatever remains there may be, and return them to their families.

    Should only take a small plastic bag, a BG174 long duration O2 set, a couple of spare cyls, if you can change them alone when required, perhaps a gas monitor might be handy…etc etc.

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  82. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    Bluff called. Game set and match. :)

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  83. bhudson (4,738 comments) says:

    Rex,

    So I question why DPF dismisses the opinion of one person who has access to mining expertise (but isn’t a miner) while lauding that of another person who has access to mining expertise (but isn’t a miner).

    Because only one of them is playing for political gain. [your post would seem to make it clear that the lauded one is either your friendly country cop or the mayor.]

    That would be reason enough.

    I know they say that politics males for strange bedfellows, but I’m somewhat surprised that you seem you eager to jump in the scratcher with Little :-)

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  84. bhudson (4,738 comments) says:

    Reid,

    I think that lack of reaction from the Nats is very deliberate – they get the best result by giving the appearance of being above this gutter politicing from Labour. Meanwhile, nature abhors a vacuum, resulting in Labour tripping over themselves to say more and more, thrusting more feet in their mouths at every turn.

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  85. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    bhudson:

    Little is playing it for poiltical gain… I can see that. However that doesn’t negate the fact that he may be right, assuming he’s taken advice from such members of his union as are suitably qualified.

    As Peter George points out, Kokshoorn seems to have been playing it for PR value to some extent too… but DPF opts to overlook that and say “the local Mayor is more rational”!

    I’m sorry, but I still don’t get how one can be held to know more than the other. So while Little’s playing it for political gain, so is DPF.

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  86. lofty (1,310 comments) says:

    Johnboy, me old mate (if I may be so bold)

    It is not about bluff calling for me, but it is about levelling the playing field.

    I know some of the potential rescuers personally, and I also know what they faced, if “Mr Plod” had sent them into hell, and believe me, they would have gone in an instant.

    But “slighty informed” people like Rex just make their task harder.

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  87. Johnboy (16,059 comments) says:

    You said it all. Proud to be your mate lofty. :)

    Rex isn’t a bad chap of course he just seems a tad misguided on this topic.

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  88. bhudson (4,738 comments) says:

    Ref: spelling above in comment to Rex… @&;$! iPhone keyboard!

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  89. kunst5 (51 comments) says:

    April 2010 West Virginia US coal mine disaster, please watch and read following links:
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/36183425/ns/us_news-life/
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/25/west-virginia-mine-investigation-methane_n_694787.html
    Watching and reading this links, Minister Brownlee why didn’t you stop Pike River ?
    Why not add real value to our economy and our Kiwi workforce ?
    Why spend millions of $ for enquiry when we all know the government (Supervisonry authority) disregarded safety issues ?
    Why not honour the people of Greymonth and spend this money construction a safe and decent future – building “The Pike River Aqua Centre” and businesses involved in fresh water in stead of destroying peoples and other life ?
    Why not go “NZ100%pure Economy” in stead of dirty coal, dirty waters – a dirty planet ?
    Why not make real money in our economy ?
    Just a thought for the government and others.

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  90. lofty (1,310 comments) says:

    Yes I have said before that I actually enjoy reading the majority of the posts that Rex puts up, but in this case, sorry, he just gets under my skin.

    If he had expertise in this sorry subject, fair enough, but he has none!

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  91. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    lofty alleges:

    I remember you wanting the back country copper to thrust rescue workers into the mine to do the “thing”.

    You misrepresent me, deliberately or inadvertently, and you are not getting away with it. Provide a link to one comment where I have advocated “thrusting”, sending, ordering or otherwise directing rescuers into the mine.

    I did however say:

    – A policeman is not qualified to take command decisions on such an operation. I found myself wondering if there wasn’t somewhere in the world a mining equivalent of Red Adair – someone who knew even more about handling disasters in mines than about mining per se. Regardless, it should be a person with a significant depth and breadth of mining knowledge, even if that person had to be brought in from overseas.

    – That if volunteers wanted to attempt a rescue then they ought to have been given an absolutely blunt assessment of the risks and likelihood of success and then Mr Plod ought to have got out of their way. People lost their lives trying to help others during the Queensland floods… that’s what people do, act nobly and selflessly in times of crisis. It’s not for anyone to order that they do not, merely to appraise them of the dangers.

    But your opinion during the early days was much more staunch, shall we say.

    It still is. I stand by those statements.

    please feel free to take up a civil action to enter the mine and pull out whatever remains there may be, and return them to their families

    That’s what I mean about literacy. I am not advocating for or against doing so.. again, find me a comment where I’ve said “that’s a bad idea” or “I agree”, so all your chest puffing about “go in there yourself” and attempts to impress me with a bit of jargon are for nought.

    I am solely debating, on this thread, whether Andrew Little’s opinion deserves to be considered. That’s not the same as saying it’s right.

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  92. bhudson (4,738 comments) says:

    Rex,

    The common belief that Little is politicking over this immediately calls into question the objectivity of the advice he sought (if any). It also calls into question whether he has applied any selectivity to that advice – e.g. Using a part of what he was told to serve his ends.

    That politicking is not something the cop or mayor can be accused of.

    Sure, DPF could be if he was making the statements – but he isn’t. He is taking the word of the non-politically partisan professionals at face value and questioning the Labour Party presidents motives.

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  93. kunst5 (51 comments) says:

    PM – as a minister of cabinet not performing to a high standard Mr. Brownlee should be sacked. Other ministers (Hide/ Joyce) importing quality infrastructure in the billions in stead of supporting our own NZworkforce with decent, skilful jobs, reducing our account deficit – etc. should go too.
    A number of changes need to be done on top – urgently – for a better performing NZeconomy.

    http://www.interest.co.nz/opinion/opinion-inequality-nz-why-wealth-accumulated-dangerous-way

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  94. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    bhudson:

    Agree 100%. I’ve actually suggested over at the Standard (because I doubt he reads Kiwiblog!) that he needs to front up with the EPMU members upon whose advice he was acting when he made those statements. If he was, they’re a valid and vital part of the debate. If he wasn’t, he’s a plonker.

    As for Kokshoorn, I don’t know enough to comment but the allegation that he was media whoring throughout the whole tragedy has been made in numerous places, including above by Pete George.

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  95. BeaB (2,118 comments) says:

    And the TVNZ 6pm newsreaders were still talking about the ‘rescue effort’. Mind you, the woman newsreader looked as though she had had her clothes thrown at her, she was such a mess.

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  96. Swampy (191 comments) says:

    @Rex Widerstrom
    The thing you never know is how political a union leaders statement is
    Theyt play these political games all the time trying to get the upper hand over any management or anyone in a workplace scenario

    That is hard to factor out of what Little is saying bUt I think in the background is his union members inherent challenge to the management of the mine (remember they attacked the CEO when they thought he was getting to much favourable publicity)
    Its just in their blood as union leaders that they have to attack any management or try to put them in their place or say “We are calling the shots here”

    With Labour in oppositiuon the Unionistas are going in to fight the political war on many fronts & there has been increase of proportions in amount of political attacks on many fronts

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  97. Swampy (191 comments) says:

    @Rex Winderstrom
    We dont need your anti police stentiments here in this thread just you dont like the police most of us do have a lot of faith in the plolices doing their job in this case.

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  98. reid (16,290 comments) says:

    bhudson if this is a deliberate strategy by the Nats to stay silent and let Liarbore run, I don’t think it’s a good one.

    This is obviously extremely emotive which means it’s hair trigger one way or the other and once you’ve decided you’ve decided. Instant polarisation.

    In a situation like this, is it wise to give your opponent free reign to paint it any way they wish to, from the very beginning, since these first impressions set so very quickly and also so deeply?

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  99. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    lofty says:

    I know some of the potential rescuers personally, and I also know what they faced, if “Mr Plod” had sent them into hell, and believe me, they would have gone in an instant.

    Ah, I now understand your perspective far better, at least on that issue, than I did before. And since you’ve raised the issue (which, as I said, was neither the point of the original post nor my earlier comments) perhaps it might clarify thimngs if I address it.

    First, we both agree that the would-be rescuers are courageous and would have demonstrated that courage given the chance.

    You seem to think, though (and forgive me if I’m interpreting this incorrectly) that they’d have acted recklessly and gone into the mine even if they knew they faced almost certain death.

    I disagree. Aside perhaps from a person faced with a partner or family member in peril, a person will always weigh the risk before attempt to help. If the data showed that any rescuer would almost certainly die and their chances of saving a life by their sacrifice was slim to none, I doubt they’d have chosen to be martyrs.

    But equally, an experienced rescuer is certainly going to take more chances than a bureaucrat would like him or her to take. As I said, State Emergency Service and fire personnel were hurling themselves into tsunamis of river water attached only to a rope (which sometimes became unmoored) during the Queensland floods. If they’d had time to check with a commander at HQ somewhere they’d probably have been told not to risk it. As a result they saved some lives and failed to save others, but to the best of my knowledge no professional rescuer died because their training and professional judgment saved them. I believe the same thing would have happened at Pike River.

    It would have been wrong for the officer in charge to order anyone in (on that we also agree). But from what I heard there were those who worked in mines (and some who worked in that particular mine) who felt that the chances of success outweighed the risks at certain points during the whole saga, but were not allowed to proceed. And that, I feel, was wrong on principle.

    I’m not saying such an operation would have succeeded – none of us have the data on which to base that assessment yet – and therefore I cannot say whether lives would have been saved, lost, or both. I’m simply saying that if someone who knew mines and was appraised of the situation at Pike river wanted to attempt a rescue, then that was their right.

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  100. Rex Widerstrom (5,349 comments) says:

    Swampy:

    I think in the background is his union members inherent challenge to the management of the mine (remember they attacked the CEO when they thought he was getting to much favourable publicity)

    That’s an excellent point. It may be that even if Little was making the comments solely motivated by EPMU objectives, those objectives themselves may not be as I have assumed them to be.

    We dont need your anti police stentiments here in this thread just you dont like the police most of us do have a lot of faith in the plolices doing their job in this case.

    And that’s not. Your faith is misplaced and I only hope that one day you don’t have it shattered by what happens to yourself or a family member at the hands of the police. Google “noble corruption” and “Police” and educate yourself.

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  101. bhudson (4,738 comments) says:

    reid,

    I dont disagree that it could be a risky business as a deliberate strategy, but two key things to me favour it in this instance:

    1. The Nats and Key in particular have had a great deal of kudos on this tragedy so far – it would really take smoking gun type evidence to erase that

    2. They had just come away from having to tell the families the bad news – to respond and open a political stoush over it would risk undermining the message of empathy and genuine remorse at having to stop that they had given the families

    In fairness, item 1 is probably more of a factor, but the two together give good cause to at least hold off to gauge public reaction before responding. I think they will see that they have handled it right this time.

    Again, Key shows the country that he doesn’t play the game like those typical, old style politicians that no one trusts. He will have done his vote take no harm at all

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  102. reid (16,290 comments) says:

    Yes agree to everything you say bhudson, they and you could be right.

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  103. RightNow (6,986 comments) says:

    Key could personally donate a reasonable sum towards a private retrieval of the remains and challenge other parties to do the same. That would sort the wheat from the chaff.
    Having said that I think his actual words at the time were completely consistent with the situation. I believe the taxpayer/government has done all we/it can do.

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  104. RightNow (6,986 comments) says:

    psst – Robbie Black if you read this I’m unconscionably drunk (thank fuck for spellcheck) but not obscene. It can be done

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  105. Pete George (23,474 comments) says:

    This could explain why Kokshoorn often appeared to have been left out of the information loop.

    Spat over ‘wire’ on mayor

    An upset police staff member wound up in a verbal altercation with Grey District mayor Tony Kokshoorn after finding him “wired” with a television recording device during a private chat.

    The discovery, in the pressure-filled days after the Pike River Mine disaster which took 29 lives, led to tension in the relationship between some officers and Kokshoorn, the popular face of the grieving district.

    A police national headquarters spokesman, when asked about the incident this week, said: “There was an incident that involved Mr Kokshoorn [who] had not declared he had a microphone on.”

    The spokesman said police were aware of “one incident” and it was a matter between Kokshoorn and TV3, who had wired him up.

    Kokshoorn said the incident happened during filming of a 60 Minutes documentary. He said a camera crew was following him around and he was constantly wired for broadcast.

    After leaving a public briefing, said Kokshoorn, he was pulled aside by a police communications staff member for a discussion. The pair had been in discussions for a short while when a camera operator approached and began filming.

    It also raises a major question – Kokshoorn says he “was constantly wired for broadcast” – so presumably this means when talking to families of the trapped men. If so were they aware they were being recorded? Was he included in private briefings to families?

    I had thought Kokshoorn was trying to the best he could in the situation, but also enjoyed the exposure he was getting. This exposes him in a different light altogether.

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  106. Inventory2 (10,291 comments) says:

    That’s one possibility Pete; the other is that 3News took advantage of Kokshoorn’s willingness to be a go-to man, and that he might have become unwittingly embroiled in all of this. At a very emotional time, he might not have been thinking about the ramifications of being wired; he may have just seen it as another opportunity to help his community.

    And 3News DOES have history in using audio footage where the interviewee had no idea that they were being recorded don’t they; does the name Kees Keizer ring any bells?

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  107. bhudson (4,738 comments) says:

    Pete,

    I don’t recall TV3 having any major ‘scoop’ during the events. That would seem to point to either this (undisclosed recording) being somewhat of an isloated event, or TV3 exercising good judgment on what to use. Given I2’s comment above, I’d suspect it is more likely the former.

    Then again, the story could just be an opportunity for The Herald to have a dig at TV3 journalistic practises and integrity? Perhaps the Kokshoorn story is more a pretext for them to take that swipe at TV media. The continuing battle between print and TV media.

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  108. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,887 comments) says:

    I have personal experience of TV3’s Sixty Minutes programme doing exactly that. Roughly 1999, I think.

    Melanie Reid was the she bitch who was wired for sound AFTER promising nothing would be recorded.

    The first anyone knew of it was when we saw ourselves on TV that very evening. The cameras were set up with telephoto lenses about a hundred metres away.

    Leopards don’t change their spots.

    So, when you put media and local politicians together you get a foetid soup comprising dog shit and scum.

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  109. Pete George (23,474 comments) says:

    I agree it’s most likely Kokshoorn was used and taken advantage of – but he still should have known better.

    I don’t recall TV3 having any major ‘scoop’ during the events.

    Someone reported Kokshoorn as saying, wrongly, that a rescue attempt was under way, just before the second explosion. If the police were aware Kokshoorn was wired they would have been careful what they told him.

    Not scoops, but what about personal reports about family members? Even if they didn’t report all of them what right have they to listen in? I’d be livid if I found out a media company secretly obtained tapes of private emotional conversations I was involved in.

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  110. kunst5 (51 comments) says:

    In addition to my articles 16th of Jan. 10:23pm / 10:36pm – some incentives are already in place by the government,
    http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/water/freshwater/index.html
    but need to be supported by their actions. It is now a matter to use the potential sustainably to generate ideas and start up businesses providing good decent employment along the West- Coast.

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  111. Dale 08 (32 comments) says:

    Little is the lowest of the low!Just for once try thinking of all the families and mates of the lost.It has not been easy to loose a very good mate down there. And now your trying to make politcal points out of our tradgedy! FUCK YOU!

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  112. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    So, all you Key and Farrar disciples, when the receiver comes up with his plan today (as strangely requested by Brownlee) it will be this… There is no realisable asset left to sell because the mine cannot be re-entered. As such its value is nil.

    So lets see if this is the plan.

    I will bet my last dollar that this will not be the plan. The plan will be to tender / sell the mine. And you know why, you bunch of fools? Because the mine is able to be cleared out, re-entered and mined again.

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  113. slightlyrighty (2,471 comments) says:

    Today we have this……..

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/pike-river-mine-disaster/4547048/Pike-River-mine-not-safe-to-enter-expert

    points to note from the article

    “Mine safety expert Dr David Cliff, of the University of Queensland, said that while the atmosphere in the West Coast mine had improved, to say it was safe to enter was a “quantum leap”.

    Cliff was among the experts consulted by police before last week’s announcement that the mine would be sealed.”

    also…..

    ” “The atmosphere is now inert without the use of the GAG [Gorniczy Agregat Gasniczy],” Cliff said.

    “It’s not capable of supporting combustion. It’s full of methane, as far as we can detect.

    “But then to say everything is OK, we can go enter the mine, that’s another quantum leap beyond that.” ”

    It goes on to quote from the families representative…..

    “Pike River Families Committee spokesman Bernie Monk said they had had no information. ”

    Yet despite the fact that they say they have no information, they think it’s OK to enter the mine? I realise this is tough times for them. In fact it’s hard to imagine anyting tougher, but that very fact makes for bad judgement.

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  114. vto (1,128 comments) says:

    They don’t think its ok to enter the mine – stop deceiving to suit your argument slightlyrighty. They think it is too early to give up trying to enter the mine. And many agree with them that it is likely the mine can be re-entered at some point, including mining experts. And mining investors.

    But yes Key and Farrar should be trusted on this ………………. ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

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