General Debate 27 December 2012

December 27th, 2012 at 8:00 am by Kokila Patel

28 Responses to “General Debate 27 December 2012”

  1. Nick K (2,061 comments) says:

    Thunderbirds are go……

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  2. Colville (3,120 comments) says:

    Crayfish here I come 🙂

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  3. barry (1,233 comments) says:

    It had to happen – the Auckland city mission has been pushing publicity about what great work they are doing feeding the starving millions (and Ive thought its all bullshit for a long time now)

    But the herald reports that theyve been feeding tourists…..suckers. I hope all those volunteers reacognise that theyve been taken for fools.

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  4. big bruv (15,556 comments) says:

    I drove past the city mission on Xmas eve and could not help but notice the huge number of pacific island people standing in line. I wonder how much those same Pacific islanders tithed to their churches last Sunday?

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  5. thedavincimode (8,131 comments) says:

    I’m trying to understand why you feel good about that barry.

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  6. Rodders (1,790 comments) says:

    Barry – you overlooked to include “Bah! Humbug!” in your comment.

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  7. barry (1,233 comments) says:

    Well thedavincimode we all hear so much about the starving and the people who are supposed to be in deep poverty and why the government and the charities need to provide more resources.

    And frankly its a load of tosh as most of it is caused by people who cant budget and who spend their welfare on booze and drugs and fast foods and gambling etc. I live near Huntly and when benefit day was thursday the pubs and the taxis did a fantastic day of business. Most of the money was gone by friday. And all the do-gooders would be asking for help come mid week because kids were at school without food and people couldnt get to health appoinments because they had no means to get there (but they were all hiring taxis to take home the booze on the previous thursday).

    What the do-gooders – like the city mission need to realise – is that handing out food parcels and putting on Xmas meals doesnt solve anything. Yes they may feel good about them selves but they havent solved anything. What they should be doingis pushing for ways to stop the need fortheir services – like a benefit that is on a card and can only be used for a very limited rangeof purchases.

    What the city mission is doing is perpetrating a situation for their own “feel-good” actions.

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  8. Manolo (21,954 comments) says:

    In the spirit of a peaceful Christmas:

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  9. Manolo (21,954 comments) says:

    barry@8.46am: +10

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  10. thedavincimode (8,131 comments) says:

    It hadn’t occurred to me that the Auckland City mission and an annual act of Christian charity was the root cause of the social problems in this country barry. I think that you should drive up and give them a jolly good piece of your mind. As long as you’ll have enough left over that is.

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  11. barry (1,233 comments) says:

    Rodders at 8:40 am

    Bah!, humbug! is used by those who have no real reason for disliking something but just want to make a noise.

    I think outfits like the city mission are a pretty much useless organisations who mostly exist for their own ego masaging – they actually dont achieve anything useful in the long run. Theyll be there again next year with the same old message.

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  12. Fletch (9,000 comments) says:

    Surprising bit of honesty from the liberal Huffington Post, where they agree (at last) that it was Clinton’s policies that caused the recession that Bush inherited. So, Obama can argue that he inherited the recession from Bush, but Bush inherited it from Clinton and bubble bursting. It’s quicker here to post some of the commentary from Newsbusters on the column –

    Here’s something I bet you thought you’d never see at the perilously liberal Huffington Post.

    In a Dean Baker article published Tuesday with the astonishing title “There Is No Santa Claus and Bill Clinton Was Not an Economic Savior,” the second sentence read, “Just as little kids have to come to grips with the fact that there is no Santa Claus, it is necessary for millions of liberals, including many who think of themselves as highly knowledgeable about economic matters, to realize that President Clinton’s policies sent the economy seriously off course.”

    For those unfamiliar with Baker, he is no conservative.
    Far from it, as he is currently co-director of the Center for Economic Policy which even the liberal Wikipedia categorizes as “progressive.”

    It is therefore fascinating to see a liberal economist on Christmas Day go after the saintly Clinton.

    “[T]he point of economic policy is to produce an economy that improves the lives of the people in a sustainable way,” wrote Baker. “Clinton badly flunked this test.”

    Baker then proceeded to speak inconvenient truths that the left and their media minions have ignored for over a decade.

    “The Clinton economy was driven by a stock bubble,” he wrote. “This is not a debatable point. The ratio of market-wide stock prices to corporate earnings was well over 30 to 1 at the peak of the bubble in 2000. This is more than twice the historic average.”

    Baker next described why it was in fact the run-up in stock prices that drove the economy in the ’90s and not the Clinton tax hikes or anything to do with his fiscal policies.

    “[S]ince any good huckster could make millions selling shares in dot.whatever, we had many hucksters starting nutball businesses that never had a prayer of making a profit. This is not much of a long-run economic strategy, but in the short-term it led to an increase in investment.”

    But that’s just the beginning.

    “The other way that the bubble drove the economy is through the wealth effect on consumption. The run-up in stock prices generated roughly $10 trillion in bubble wealth,” Baker confessed. “The wealth effect from stock is usually estimated to be 3-4 cents on the dollar. This would mean that the bubble generated between $300 billion to $400 billion annually in additional consumption. This would have been 3-4 percent of GDP at the time ($480 billion to $560 billion annually in today’s economy).”

    If consumption associated with the stock bubble’s wealth effect was responsible for three to four percent of the GDP, since GDP grew by roughly four percent per year when Clinton was president, that means much of the growth was due to the bubble.

    Of course, this growth was unsustainable because as we know from experience, all bubbles burst. When that happens, a recession occurs.

    Fortunately for Clinton and his fans in the media, his tenure was about to end thereby allowing him to pass the torch on to George W. Bush just as things were collapsing.

    “The S&P 500 was more than 10 percent below its 2000 peak and the NASDAQ was down by more than 40 percent on the day that Bush took office,” Baker acknowledged. “This pretty much guaranteed the recession that began in March of 2001 just as the collapse of the housing bubble placed President Obama in the middle of terrible recession in January of 2009.”

    That’s correct. For the last four years, we’ve been bludgeoned by the left and their media minions about a recession that Obama inherited. What they dishonestly fail to report is that Bush inherited one as well.

    But there was one surprise left from Baker.

    “The 2001 recession was the main reason that the surplus vanished in the 2002 fiscal year.”

    That’s correct. The so-called surpluses vanished because of a recession that was handed to Bush by Clinton and not because of tax cuts.

    Original column –

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  13. CHFR (348 comments) says:

    32 years old 11 kids and pregnant with another. What’s the bet this make over will be trashed in no time flat and “Mum”is begging again?

    If you are in debt stop having kids you obviously can’t afford.

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  14. flipper (5,296 comments) says:

    I think the use of the DPS is overdone, and the “security” measures surrounding our politicians have become somewhat risible.

    Originally the DPS was just that – Diplomat protection. They morphed into a quasi US-stryle SS as the Molesworth Street cowboys sought to play with the “bigs”. But in 2012-13 are they necessary to the extent that they now operate ?

    In typical red radio fashion, that silly, child-brained ex Labour staffer, Hipkins, makes headlines there, and on other news networks, over a 2011-12 “blow-out” in DPS costs. Forget that there was a General Election and RWC in 2011. Forget that in 2011 Goff had siumilkar “:protection”. Forget that in 2012 the Molesworth Street cowboys “mnust be seen to match it” with similar squads in other, somewhat more violent, societies, the current budget blow-out is breathlessly ascribed by Hipkins to J.Key’s “personal aggrandisement”.

    Aw….utter crap.

    Yes, the DPS escort rubbish is overdone when they follow Key around the House of Representatives (a strong Speaker would have loing since told them to bugger off). But to argue over $5-6 million when the US spends billions looking after the Obamination and his family (including a billion or more on his holidays in Hawaii), is just ridiculous.

    So, a big over-reaction by both the make-work DPS/Molesworth Street cowboys….and the labour oriented folks at Red Radio, is it not? 🙂

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  15. Fletch (9,000 comments) says:

    This from the Guardian newspaper. Obama is sending people to join up with Al Qaeda every time he sends one of his drone attacks. Thanks B.O.

    I can’t recall any one news article that so effectively conveys both the gross immorality and the strategic stupidity of Obama’s drone attacks as this one from Monday’s Washington Post by Sudarsan Raghavan. It details how the US-supported Yemeni dictatorship lies to its public each time the US kills Yemeni civilians with a drone attack, and how these civilian-killing attacks are relentlessly (and predictably) driving Yemenis to support al-Qaida and devote themselves to anti-American militancy


    Similarly, the LA Times has a long article on drone attacks in Yemen and quotes Ahmed al Zurqua, an expert on Islamic militants, explaining the obvious: “The drones have not killed the real Al Qaeda leaders, but they have increased the hatred toward America and are causing young men to join Al Qaeda to retaliate.”

    History will surely record that one of the most moronic collective questions ever posed is “Why do they hate us?” – where the “they” are: “those we continuously bomb and kill and whose dictators we prop up.” Noting the two US drone attacks on December 24 in his country, the 23-year-old Yemeni writer Ibrahim Mothana asked: “Two US drone strikes in Yemen today. Should we consider them a Christmas gift?!” That’s exactly what al-Qaida undoubtedly considers them to be.

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  16. kowtow (13,193 comments) says:

    Agree with you over the Mission bullshit. The media push that story every year along with the state sponsored Holiday Road Toll league table.

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  17. peterwn (4,281 comments) says:

    flipper – up to the end of the 1960’s there were no professional protesters and known nutters were safely locked up in mental hospitals. Kiwi Keith walked to Parliament from the Prime Ministerial residence round the corner at 41 Pipitea St and the phone number there was in the book. He had his hair cut at Maggies in Molesworth St (or its predecessor). You could wander round the corridors of power at Parliament at will.

    So different nowadays. Helen Clark had a Diplomatic Protection Squad presence most of the time except when on holiday (and she kept the destinations a secret) and apparently at some other time. AFAIK the cops purchased or rented a place adjacent to her Mt Albert house. John Key expects to be protected and takes the advice of the police on this. Additional costs on his watch would be because:
    1. He accepts their protection at all times as he should.
    2. Protesters (particularly the ‘leaders’ who egg on the others to break the law, but stay out of trouble themselves) and nutters tend to be left leaning so he is more vulnerable than a left leaning leader.

    I stronly suspect that the police had to carry the significant indirect costs associated with the fall-out of the Canterbury speeding incident in general police budgets whereas it should have been on the Diplomatic Protection budget. H2 would have blown her top if the latter happened.

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  18. Paulus (3,565 comments) says:

    Can anybody confirm that Helen Clark does get Diplomatic Protection Officers whenever she return to New Zealand ?

    I see that the Feral Herald (on thin cheap Malaysian paper) is back on track, like the Fairfax papers, printing screeds of the same anti-government vitriol.
    Why is it that they only print letters from the same people, full of bile. Their picture man, whoever it is, is just as bad.
    Hope the Editors can think of what has happened to the Sunday Star Times whose circulation has dropped over the last 12 months primarily due to similar vitriol, from the same writers.
    You are not yet influencing opinion polls, just stoking up the “Ambrose” Utu.

    I cannot see the written MSM being in business for a lot longer, but as they only employ ignorant unbalanced political twerps they will get what they expect.

    As far as I am concerned the Feral Herald (6 days) is on a short lease. The Fairfax was cancelled a year ago.
    I can soon get used to doing without a daily paper

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  19. David Garrett (10,969 comments) says:

    flipper: When you are next in Welly, go down to parliament, approach a nice looking senior security man, and ask him to show you the “rogues gallery” of nuts who front up to parliament regularly, and the kind of weapons which have been seized from said nutters…you may then come to think that our representatives have somewhat less protection than is actually warranted..

    Little clue: objects intercepted at the metal detector include axes and a machete…

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  20. Right of way is Way of Right (956 comments) says:

    Police have helped a South Auckland family of 13 avoid eviction by transforming their Housing New Zealand home, bringing it up to proper living standards.

    The Flat Bush Neighbourhood Policing Team gained the support of the local community and businesses to upgrade the home, which was in such a poor state of repair the family was on its last chance with HNZ.

    Constable Karen Ancell said 11 children lived at the house with their 32-year-old mother who was pregnant.

    “We have stepped in to get the house up to scratch so the family can make a fresh start,” Ancell said.

    “They are struggling, to say the least, and some of the children are starting to come to police attention.”

    More than 40 volunteers helped with the make over while businesses donated materials and services.

    The volunteers fumigated the house, repaired damaged walls and painted the interior. Outside they tidied the grounds, erected raised garden beds and planted vegetables.

    Police, Salvation Army and Habitat for Humanity representatives also donated furnishings to completely refurnish the house.

    The community’s input for a family they had never met was huge, Ancell added.

    “It’s about giving a family a fresh start. They are in a good place to change now, whereas in the past that hasn’t been the case.”

    But giving them a home they can be proud of is just the first step. The police are also working to give the family the tools to become good members of society.

    They will receive mentoring, budgeting advice, counselling and health checks as well as anger management and parenting training.

    “They are in a bit of debt and it is very difficult to make headway out – it’s a vicious circle.”

    Now hang on just a bloody minute here!

    32 years old, pregnant, with 11 kids!

    11 bloody kids!!!!!

    Every single one of them sucking off the government tit! Now we can all sit here wringing our hands, wailing, what about the children, but in this age of contraception and responsability, why am I, and many other taxpayers, paying for this woman’s irresponsability. If any more than three of these kids have the same father, I will be very surprised!

    After our third child, I had a vasectomy. Yet I’m still paying!

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  21. Akaroa (1,333 comments) says:

    Re-Barry at 8.46

    Hear hear to what Barry says about the City Mission.

    I (hope) I’m as caring about the deprived and wanting as the next man, but I’ve had reservations about the repeated and ever increasing largesse that is handed out on a plate (literally) to any ol’ fronter-up this festive season.

    Charity is all well and good, but how do you decide what are truly “needy and deserving” cases? I see from the Herald that some recipients were recording the proceedings on I-phones – (not exactly the badge of penury!) -and this morning I read that the foreign tourists who were fed and hosted there were not recognised as such by the ‘organisers’.

    Big ups and applause to those hard working organisers, but why am I left with the feeling that they, and their efforts – not to mention their largesse – is being taken for granted by not-always-so-deserving-cases?

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  22. Pete George (24,828 comments) says:

    Can anybody confirm that Helen Clark does get Diplomatic Protection Officers whenever she return to New Zealand ?

    I don’t know, but if she does it is (at times at least) very discreet. I went to a lectire she gave at the Mayfair Theatre in Dunedin a couple of months ago and there was no sign of any protection.

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  23. kowtow (13,193 comments) says:

    petey went to a lecture given by Helen?

    Spends a lot of time with that lot,glutton for punishment?

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  24. flipper (5,296 comments) says:

    PeterW ,DavidG et al …

    I know all that having been there more years than most any two together.

    The point has been made that access into and around the Capitol Building in Washington is easier than Wellington.

    However, I have some close, first hand experience of visiting heads of state. The famous (Well, well known) Black Jack Stevenson, told me over lunch one day that the tightest of all surrounded the Shah of Persia. It exceeded that around UK Royalty, LBJ, and Air Marshall Ky, for example.

    The most virulent and nasty New Zealand “protesters” I came across were union organisers. I recall getting kicked from behind when some tried to get at KJH in Palmerston North. And I also recall Rob Muldoon rolling up his trouser legs to show guests in our home the appalling state of his shins when he was kicked through an Auckland Police cordon. I also recall the DPS twerps who parked at the top of our Wellington home’s drive at 10-10.15pm every evening while they made a radio report on my next door neighbours (diplomatic) home. It ruined our TV reception. 🙂 Getting that stopped ultimately took RDM’s intervention.

    I did not make my point well.

    DPS attention is necessary. There are nutters of course. But make-work is still very much alive and well among the Molesworth Street cowboys! It is a question of where it stops. I really have/had two bitches:
    • The extent of DPS operations, and
    • The use of J. Key as a whipping boy by red radio and silly Hipkins.

    Anyway, makes for an interesting discussion.

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  25. Pete George (24,828 comments) says:

    kowtow: “Spends a lot of time with that lot”


    I spend time on a wide range of things. This was the first time I’d ever seen Clark speaking in person, it was at the inaugral Dame Dorothy Fraser lecture in South Dunedin, on ‘poverty’.

    It was interesting but also a bit disapointing, Clark talked mostly about what she is doing around the world with the UN and hardly related to the ‘poverty’ issue in New Zealand.

    Talking of which, Bryan Bruce is working on a followup documentary to his election special, referring to WANTS versus needs. He seems to be angling at WANTING a more socialist state but I don’t think that’s what the majority of New Zealanders need or want.

    Poverty, wants and needs

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  26. Pete George (24,828 comments) says:

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  27. Pete George (24,828 comments) says:

    On left versus right:

    The difference between left and right is that the left believe the economy belongs to all of us and requires democracy whereas the right believe it belongs to a few select people which inevitably makes those select people dictators. The end result of right-wing ideology is the collapse of the society.

    I guess that’s why Western democracies have collapsed and Soviet socialism is thriving.

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  28. nasska (16,742 comments) says:

    A photographer for a national magazine was assigned to take pictures of a great forest fire. He was advised that a small plane would be waiting to fly him over the fire.

    The photographer arrived at the airstrip just an hour before sundown. Sure enough, a small Cessna airplane was waiting. He jumped in with his equipment and shouted, “Let’s go!” The tense man sitting in the pilot’s seat swung the plane into the wind and soon they were in the air, though flying erratically.

    “Fly over the north side of the fire,” said the photographer, “and make several low-level passes.” “Why?” asked the nervous pilot. “Because I’m going to take pictures!” yelled the photographer. “I’m a photographer, and photographers take pictures.”
    After a long pause, the “pilot” replied: “You mean, you’re not my instructor?”

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