Why the assets sale petition failed

June 10th, 2013 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

The assets sale petition that failed (but can be re-submitted) had the highest number of non valid signatures of any since the 1990s. I was interested in why this was the case so requested documents from the Office of the Clerk, Electoral Commission and under the OIA.

There were 393,778 signatures submitted.  They needed 308,753 to make 10%. Stats NZ found the estimated number of valid signatures was 292,291 with a standard error of 2,579.  That meant 26% of signatures were invalid.  Stats NZ commented:

The probability of there being enough valid signatures in the full petition given the results of our sample is (negligible) less than one in a billion.

So why were so few signatures valid. The sample stats were:

  • Signatures checked 28,127
  • Unique electors 23,031
  • Ineligible signatures 4,909 (not on electoral roll)
  • Illegible signers 21
  • Duplicate 166

Now that level of duplicates may not sound high, but that is the number of people found as duplicates just in the small sample tested. If you checked the entire sample, you would get far more. Stats NZ estimates that all up, 11% of those who signed the petition signed it at least twice. That is a very high proportion, and significantly higher than any other CIR where the figure has ranged from 5.1% to 8.8%.

The proportion of ineligibles was 17%, and the range in other CIRs has been between 12% and 18%. So the key difference with this CIR was not the proportion of ineligible signing it – but people fraudulently signing it more than once. 11% means one in nine signers signed it twice!

There is a case to be made that if you sign a petition twice, both signatures should be struck out – rather than just one of them. Just like with double voting.

Incidentally I didn’t sign the petition any times. To the best of my memory I’ve never signed any CIR petition except the one for a on the flag.

Maybe when the Greens spent all that taxpayer money on hiring people to (get people to) sign the petition, they should have told them to tell people to sign it once only.

It will be interesting to see how many duplicates are there when they resubmit the petition in two months. If they target the same people and areas as the previous 12 months, then they may end up just getting more duplicates.

My thanks to the agency staff who compiled the info for my request.

6. Briefing Notes for GS 02.05.2013

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65 Responses to “Why the assets sale petition failed”

  1. ChardonnayGuy (1,213 comments) says:

    Tends to be rather reminiscent of the petition against homosexual law reform back in 1985-86 from the fundamentalist Coalition of Concerned Citizens, then. For once, I agree with the Prime Minister, who dislikes CIRs because of the expense of the infernal potty plebiscites in question. It is past dispute that California’s addiction to the ‘referendum and initiative’ process as it’s called over there has led to that US state’s fiscal chaos and ungovernability. As I’ve said beforehand, while I oppose asset sales as a centre-leftie myself, I do not think CIRs are salvageable as political tools and opposed the foolish CIR against asset sales on that basis. They tend to lend themselves to cackhanded populist right causes- which may not be particularly good for the centre-right as such either. Look at the current Eurosceptic/Europhile ructions within the British Tories, for instance, over any proposed referendum on British membership of the European Union. They’re a waste of money and time.

    And before the raving right raise the issue of marriage equality, might I respond in three words- euthanasia law reform?

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  2. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    Maybe when the Greens spent all that taxpayer money on hiring people to sign the petition, they should have told them to tell people to sign it once only.

    Can you please offer some evidence of the Greens hiring, or paying people to sign the petition, and preferably evidence of them using taxpayers money to hire people to sign the petition?

    Those are pretty serious claims you have made, I certainly hope you can support them with evidence DPF.

    [DPF: The Greens have admitted it, and it has been reported in the media. They spent tens of thousands paying people to collect signatures]

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  3. Pete George (23,682 comments) says:

    Judith, the hiring of petitioners has been admitted by the Greens, they claim it is valid use of their allocate parliamentary funds.

    On the other hand Graeme Edgeler points out it gives a party an unfair advantage over ordinary citizens who have to fund everything themselves.

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  4. Pete George (23,682 comments) says:

    Why the assets sale petition failed

    The petition failed because it was used as a political tool, which raised perceptions of party abuse of CIR and increased the degree of needing signatures for political sake, and increasd the amount of opposition interference.

    And people paid to get signatures are more likely to err on getting the numbers rather than getting the accuracy. Next time performance bonuses should be based on error rates.

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  5. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    Pete George (17,793) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 9:28 am
    ————————————-

    They hired people to collect signatures. That is, stand on street corners etc and ask if people would like to sign the petition and so on…. as far as I know, and I’m not a member of the Green party, they did not ‘use taxpayers money to hire people to sign the petition’ – which is what DPF has claimed.

    Now, if the Greens have technically given people money to sign the petition, any money, tax payers or not – then I would like to know about it – because as far as I know that is actually illegal.

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  6. Lloyd (125 comments) says:

    Why should DPF have to prove what the Greens have already admitted, Judith?

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  7. Longknives (4,868 comments) says:

    The Greens are crooked. Is anyone (apart from Judith) surprised?

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  8. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    Lloyd (120) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 9:37 am
    ————————————

    Please show me where the Greens admitted they hired people to SIGN the petition?

    I am aware they hired people to canvas for signatures, but I have never seen a statement where they hired people, using taxpayers money, or any other money, to SIGN the petition.

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  9. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    Longknives (2,570) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 9:38 am
    ————————————

    The Greens did not pay anyone to sign that petition. Paying people to sign a petition is illegal.

    The statement he makes above is the sort of thing I would expect from the Whale, but DPF’s standards are usually much higher. I suspect it was a mistake in wording, however, I would like to see if he has proof of what he is claiming – I’m sure its something Mr Peter’s would love to work with – if there is.

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  10. OneTrack (3,221 comments) says:

    Judith, in their world, the end justifies the means. The Greens wanted to tackle the government and assets sales. They subverted the CIR process for their own purposes and also paid their signature collectors out of their parliamentary allocation.

    Yes I agree it is unethical. I agree it was possibly illegal. But they are the Greens, which means they are for the “planet” and that means anything they do is “right”. And our compliant left wing media gives them a free ride (too focussed on teacups and Kim Kardashian).

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  11. Pete George (23,682 comments) says:

    Judith, I have seen this discussed a lot. It would appear to be not strictly illegal, Greens have discretionary use of their funds.

    But I (and others) think it is at least contray to the spirit of Citizen Initiated Referenda, because of the unfair financial advantage it gives to parties – and the use of free MP travel and resources in promoting the referendum and gathering signatures comes into that too.

    MPs are employed to represent the people, not to use a means of people’s democracy using taxpayer money to relitigate elections and relitigate the parliamentary process. They are getting a third bite of the cherry, at our expense.

    Greens claim to be very democratic, but the have become adept at co-opting democatic processes to favour their own purposes.

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  12. YesWeDid (1,050 comments) says:

    Judith, they all seem a bit thick on kiwiblog this morning, I don’t think DPF meant to say that the Greens paid people to sign the petition he meant to say they paid people to collect signatures.

    The best argument against asset sales isn’t the petition or a referendum it’s the current Might River share price.

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  13. Peter (1,723 comments) says:

    Quite Muldoonist, really.

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  14. kowtow (8,755 comments) says:

    chardongaygay has hit the nail there.Bum sex,legislation by activist elites and unelected bureaucrats is the way to go.

    Californians were sick to death of being taxed for minorities and voted to end that and their legislators still didn’t get the message “Live within your means” That’s why California ‘s fucked.

    Binding referenda force the fuckers to act ,that’s why the EU elites hate them and refuse democracy to the herd who would fire their autocratic overpaid arses tomorrow if they could.

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  15. OneTrack (3,221 comments) says:

    “Greens claim to be very democratic, but the have become adept at co-opting democatic processes to favour their own purposes.”

    They are yearning to get to their communist roots – they know best.

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  16. scrubone (3,104 comments) says:

    Far be it from me to defend the Greens on this, but I did have some volunteers come to my door asking me to sign the “smacking” petition (quotes because people seem to being pedantic on this thread). When I told them I’d already signed it they said it was a new one – which is clearly wasn’t.

    I guess the moral of the story is that over-eager collectors can always decide that the ends justifies the means. It’s just that the Greens had more people who thought that way – possibly due to them being paid.

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  17. Cunningham (846 comments) says:

    YesWeDid (897) the might river share price is at that level because of the stupid policy that the Labour/Greens concocted to sabotage the sale. If you want ‘thick’, look not further then the muppets who put that policy forward and cost the country tens of millions of dollars. Long term MRP shares will be fine. Even if the policy was implemented it will be a disaster and eventually reversed.

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  18. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    OneTrack (520) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 9:47 am

    and

    Pete George (17,795) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 9:48 am

    ——————————————

    You are both missing the point, either by mistake or on purpose.

    The Green did NOT hire, or pay anyone to SIGN the petition. That is NOT legal – or ethical or anything else but negative.

    They simply did NOT do it or admit to doing it. You are both wrong.

    What they did was used tax payer money to employ/hire people to canvas for signatures for the petition.
    The two acts are entirely separate – one may be ethically shady, it is still legal. The other is unethical and illegal.

    Now, DPF has made a statement, which I suspect is just a lapse in correct wording, however, in doing so he has made a statement that implies an illegal act has been performed.

    I would like to see him either prove that, or correct his statement to reflect the real situation.

    It is a matter of integrity – I happen to have a great deal of respect for DPF and the manner in which he, despite his obvious political persuasion, retains dignity by providing a fair and just reporting method. It is most unusual for him to make such an error.

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  19. OneTrack (3,221 comments) says:

    The best argument for asset sales is that, even with all their “tricks”, the Greens still haven’t got the required number of petition signatures to even trigger an actual referendum, much less actually “win” one. It must be a bit embarrassing?

    And the current share price indicates that maybe it isn’t really such an “asset” after all, and that John Key got a premium price for it at sale – good on John Key. But I do wonder how much more the country would have got if the sale hadn’t been sabotaged by the Greens (and their junior partner Labour – I shouldn’t forget them of course). How many hospitals and schools could have been built with the money that disappeared because of their back of a beer coaster brain fart?

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  20. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    Cunningham (479) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 9:59 am
    —————————

    Rubbish – that may have affected the initial buy up of shares, but the drop in value has nothing to do with that statement. Those shares were never going to be the ‘gold mine’ they were flouted as being which is why we didn’t buy any. Our accountant advised us long before the Greens and Labour made their statements – he predicted the price would fall by at least 50 cents within the first 6 months.

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  21. RightNow (6,995 comments) says:

    Judith is correct, the wording DPF has used, “Maybe when the Greens spent all that taxpayer money on hiring people to sign the petition“, appears to be a mistake (assuming DPF doesn’t want to make that particular allegation).

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  22. OneTrack (3,221 comments) says:

    Judith – FFS

    Yes I admit that it “was a mistake in wording” by DPF. That was obvious. It was also obvious what he really meant. So why the song and dance about it.

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  23. scrubone (3,104 comments) says:

    It is a matter of integrity – I happen to have a great deal of respect for DPF and the manner in which he, despite his obvious political persuasion, retains dignity by providing a fair and just reporting method. It is most unusual for him to make such an error.

    Let the record reflect that Judith is no longer pretending to lean right.

    Also, yea it was clumsy wording. Get off your high horse – we all know what he meant. This is a blog, not a dictionary.

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  24. KiwiGreg (3,259 comments) says:

    “Our accountant advised us… ”

    Please tell me you dont take investment advice from your accountant. Just about the last place to go.

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  25. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    scrubone (2,371) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 10:07 am
    ————————-

    I’ve never pretended to lean right – I am a swinging voter, who has voted in all directions at various times – never pretended to be anything but ‘flakey’.

    The above is a matter of principal and integrity – DPF as a popular blogger has a responsibility to ensure the integrity of his ‘brand’ – making claims that certain parties have committed illegal acts – quite frankly puts him in the same realm as Peters, a place I’m sure he doesn’t want to be.

    Saying ‘we all know what he means’ is not good enough – people read his blog and are influenced by it, therefore he has a responsibility to ensure he is factually correct, or that his statement is clearly marked as opinion only.

    If he doesn’t do that, he leaves himself wide open to criticism – X your T’s and dot your I’s and DPF is on to the good thing.

    Pedantic or not – I believe DPF could go a long way by providing a well balanced and objective blog, as opposed to the unbalanced and subjective ramblings demonstrated elsewhere.

    @kiwigreg – our accountant has never put us wrong yet.

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  26. s.russell (1,646 comments) says:

    I rather suspect that the 17% ineligibles simply hides more duplicates, the difference being that these people were slightly smarter (or less honest) and used a false name instead of using the same name twice. I am sure the same was true of other CIR petitions too, right as well as left.

    And yes, Judith, you are right about the wording. I have no reason to believe that the Greens hired people to sign, just that they hired people to ask others to sign. Fair cop, though I am confident it was just a garble on DPF’s part rather than an intended accusation.

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  27. shoreboy57 (140 comments) says:

    More hypocrisy from Greens -lying and cheating on petitions are ok

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  28. hannity (152 comments) says:

    166 Duplicates out of 28,127

    How the hell does that equate to 11% ?

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  29. Manolo (14,044 comments) says:

    The Greens are crooks and unfit to govern. This confirms it.

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  30. scrubone (3,104 comments) says:

    hannity, as Bob of Family First found out the hard way, that’s 166 duplicates out of the sample. Which means that there were many more duplicates in the sample but didn’t get picked up because the other one was outside the sample.

    Apparently there’s a formula for these things. Yea, it doesn’t look right but it seems that it does have a solid statistical basis.

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  31. Nigel Kearney (1,047 comments) says:

    >166 Duplicates out of 28,127. How the hell does that equate to 11% ?

    They randomly sampled 28127 out of 393778 which is about 7%. Roughly speaking, 166 duplicates in the sample suggests there are actually 2371 (166 / 0.07) records in the sample that are a duplicate of one somewhere in the whole data set. Then 2371/0.07=33878 becomes the estimate of all the duplicates.

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  32. PaulL (6,044 comments) says:

    So, a few thoughts on what potential reasons might create such a high proportion of duplicates:
    1. Perhaps those signing were disproportionately stupid and didn’t know it mattered
    2. Perhaps just an unlucky sample. I assume Stats NZ sampled big enough to avoid this
    3. Perhaps people signed it more to show how much they care than expecting an actual referendum – the important thing was your friends seeing you sign it (even if that meant signing it twice)
    4. Perhaps the collectors were pushy and it was easier to sign twice to make them go away
    5. Perhaps the collectors were stupid enough to think it unlikely they’d get caught having people sign twice and encouraged it – maybe they’re used to bending the rules and making untrue claims

    Any other options?

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  33. hannity (152 comments) says:

    Nigel Kearney (380) Says:
    OK Thanks for that.

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  34. Graeme Edgeler (3,290 comments) says:

    The Office of the Clerk responded to an Official Information Act request?

    Awesome!

    [DPF: yes, see comment below]

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  35. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    From experience, many people don’t read the statement at the top of petitions I’ve been involved with.

    On the two times I was asked to sign the petition mentioned above, it was verbally presented to me in different ways.

    The first said – sign the no asset sale petition,

    The second ‘sign the asset sale referendum petition’ –

    It may be that some didn’t bother to read the sheet correctly, and believed they were signing two separate petitions.

    This could have been further complicated by the fact that some of the forms were ‘letterheaded’ with Greens, or Labour, and I even saw one with Union letter head.

    (No, I only signed it once!)

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  36. hannity (152 comments) says:

    PaulL (5,213) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 10:51 am
    ‘So, a few thoughts on what potential reasons might create such a high proportion of duplicates:’

    Who knows , It dosen’t change the fact , that the Greens will get the required number of signatures.

    Dpfs post is just some scraps, for the dim-witted to slobber over.

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  37. nostrils (53 comments) says:

    Judith…..just piss off!

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  38. nasska (11,797 comments) says:

    PaulL

    6) Perhaps some of us deliberately signed twice &/or used false names just to spike the lying commies.

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  39. freedom101 (509 comments) says:

    The CIR promoted by the Greens should be ignored until the Greens agree to back a repeal of the anti-smacking legislation, which 90% of voters rejected in a referendum. If the Greens won’t implement that result, why should we pay any attention whatsoever to their own petition?

    It’s called hypocrisy and you can spot it from a long distance.

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  40. cha (4,078 comments) says:

    That’s why California ‘s fucked.

    Do keep up you silly old man.

    http://www.economist.com/news/united-states/21569723-laughing-stock-america-gets-serious-about-its-budget-back-black

    http://au.businessinsider.com/california-confronts-budget-surplus-2013-5

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  41. KiwiGreg (3,259 comments) says:

    @cha if you think California has solved its budgetary problems or that it has a “surplus” there’s more than one “silly old man”.

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  42. toad (3,674 comments) says:

    As someone who has been out there collecting signatures, I met a lot of people who were not sure if they had signed the referendum petition. This was because there had been previous petitions to Parliament on asset sales organised by each of the Greens and Labour. The Greens’ Parliamentary petition was called “Keep it Kiwi”, whereas the referendum petition was called “Keep Our Assets”. There was also an online Avaaz petition on asset sales organised by Aotearoa is Not For Sale.

    Understandably, some people would be confused about which petition they had signed. My advice, and I suspect that of most signature collectors, to those who weren’t certain if they had previously signed the referendum petition (as opposed to one of the other petitions on asset sales) was to suggest they sign it anyway, because their signature would count (once) even if they signed twice.

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  43. Colville (2,298 comments) says:

    Nigel Kearney @ 10.48. huh?

    There was 166 duplicates in the 28K so 1/169 is a duplicate.
    Full petition is 394K signatures so 2350 dupes.
    That aint 11%

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  44. Manolo (14,044 comments) says:

    You said it, toad. You fit the profile. :D

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  45. Colville (2,298 comments) says:

    Toad…

    Just for the for the record you were happy to encourage fraud.

    Did you get paid?
    Did you sign it just once or more than once?

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  46. Colville (2,298 comments) says:

    Morning Manolo :-)

    How the hell are ya?

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  47. greenjacket (482 comments) says:

    Judith: “I am a swinging voter, who has voted in all directions at various times – never pretended to be anything but ‘flakey’.”

    Judith is so bewildered that she has probably tried to vote in all directions at the same time.

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  48. hannity (152 comments) says:

    Colville

    Just for the record, are you happy to encourage ignorance?

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  49. scrubone (3,104 comments) says:

    KiwiGreg beat me to it.

    But I’ll share this quote from another blog:
    The revenues are up this year because a lot of rich people, who support California with capital gains taxes, cashed in investments before the rates went up last January. This is a one time thing and, like most of the state’s recent history, will be followed by spending as though this were the new baseline. Next year they will be wondering what happened as the bottom falls out.

    Apparently they also have a trillion or so of debt and unfunded liabilities.
    http://patterico.com/2013/05/28/new-york-times-article-on-alleged-california-surpluses-ignores-crushing-california-debt/

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  50. David Farrar (1,901 comments) says:

    In relation to Graeme Edgeler’s query, not often I get to teach Graeme an obscure piece of law.

    s57 of the CIR Act says:

    The Ombudsmen Act 1975 and the Official Information Act 1982 shall apply in relation to the Clerk of the House of Representatives as if the Clerk of the House of Representatives were, in relation to the functions conferred on the Clerk of the House of Representatives by this Act, an organisation named in Schedule 1 of the Ombudsmen Act 1975.

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  51. Graeme Edgeler (3,290 comments) says:

    There was 166 duplicates in the 28K so 1/169 is a duplicate.
    Full petition is 394K signatures so 2350 dupes.
    That aint 11%

    And that ain’t how maths work. They looked at around 1/14 of the signatures.

    166 signatures were duplicated *within* the 1/14 they looked in. And 166 more of them would have been duplicated with the 2/14, and 166 more with the 3/14 and more with the 4/14 etc. So ~2350 signatures in the ~1/14 of the signatures they looked at were duplicates.

    But there would also have been duplicates in the 13/14 they didn’t check, which duplicated not with the 1/14 they checked, but within the 13/14.

    And then there would be 166 more duplicated between the 2/14 and the 3/14 and the 2/14 and the 4/14 etc.

    All up, you get the number they get, approximately.

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  52. Graeme Edgeler (3,290 comments) says:

    In relation to Graeme Edgeler’s query, not often I get to teach Graeme an obscure piece of law.

    I knew that, but had totally forgotten!

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  53. RightNow (6,995 comments) says:

    “hannity (122) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 11:45 am
    Colville

    Just for the record, are you happy to encourage ignorance?”

    Tricky – he can’t respond to you without encouraging you. What is Colville to do?

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  54. Colville (2,298 comments) says:

    Graeme Edgeler.

    I get that they looked at approx 1/14th. and they found 166 dupes.

    Fo there to be 11% dupes they would have needed to have found 3100 dupes in the 28K sample.

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  55. Colville (2,298 comments) says:

    ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh……………………. I get it now.

    I appoligise and withdraw in shame :-)

    (not really…I am a property developer..I never feel shame :-) )

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  56. Graeme Edgeler (3,290 comments) says:

    Fo there to be 11% dupes they would have needed to have found 3100 dupes in the 28K sample.

    If you ignore the names not on the electoral roll, you have a 23k sample. 166 signatures in that sample were duplicated within the 1/14 sample, and a further 2158 signatures *in that sample* which would have been duplicated in the signatures outside the sample. It’s still not quite 11%, but it’s close-ish (i.e. it’s over 10%).

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  57. Colville (2,298 comments) says:

    Failure to read the exam question properly usually results in a poor mark!

    ;-)

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  58. Grendel (1,003 comments) says:

    Judith, nice of you to drop your accountant in it.

    >>
    Under this legislation (financial advisers act) accountants/tax agents are prohibited from giving financial advice unless providing this service in the ordinary course of business as an accountant/tax agent.
    >>

    i very much doubt your account is normally in the course of giving financial advise on shares as part of his day to day business as a tax accountant.

    also to be able to give advice on a product you have to be able to show care, diligence and skill. is your accountant that up to play on every share to be able to make that advice?

    i am wary of his skills becuase he is worried about what a share might do in 6 months, you dont buy shares for 6 months unless you are speculating on a short term increase. share/equities are a 7+ year paradigm. frankly if they have dropped in price in the short term that means you could buy them cheaper, if you wanted and it fits your risk profile.

    much like i dont give tax advice (despite knowing a heap about tax), accountants should not be giving financial advice.

    none of what i said above was advice btw. an actual Authorised Financial Adviser.

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  59. blondewithaniq (24 comments) says:

    I second Judith’s concerns on the wording David has used, either ‘arguably’ accidentally, carelessly or deliberately.
    Perceptions on which will vary given the leanings or open-mindedness of those responding of course!
    The same kind of semantics are used here & elsewhere as yet another obvious ‘spoiler’ has been overlooked until you get to
    this below
    nasska (6,569) Says:
    June 10th, 2013 at 11:09 am
    PaulL
    6) Perhaps some of us deliberately signed twice &/or used false names just to spike the lying commies

    Exactly that was openly applauded, encouraged and boasted about on Whaleoils blog..
    Although on there the tall-tale-tellers were claiming up to ten or twelve different signatures at different times with different collectors or at different collection points unattended.

    As an unpaid voluntary collector over quite a long periood of time for Greens & Grey Power, I had quite a few people confused as to whether they had or had not signed the ‘real referendum’, who could not remember if they had signed one ‘online’ and were keen to ensure they would not miss out when I pointed out that was not the same, We needed to meet valid only via signature/electoral role/age resident or citizen eligibility criteria which would be crosschecked on the Asset Sale referendum forms I had.
    Given these were circulating via Greypower, the Greens, NZ First, Labour, Unions and other organisations as well as at cafes, empathetic events etc, I was not overly surprised by the invalidity numbers.
    There were a lot of ways it could be undermined, and a very real willingness for some to cynically do that
    Certainly not surprised by the usual vitriolic, over the top reactionary bile in response to the failure to meet the number either given the latest amateur-dramatic Devil-beast rhetoric from Key and co..
    If my mandate to serve (although I rather think the current Americanism ‘serve’ has been subverted to ‘rule’ here too), actually relied on those National do, to shove shonky legislation through under urgency I may probably be seeing ‘demons too’.
    With Peter Dunne & dusted now, can John Banks on Amnesia(sic) rely on continued blind trust on his word any more than Gilmore could?
    The answer is probably yes for now, since Mr. Key in 2013 has long since abandoned any faux scruples & has no intuition in that regard at what a connected millstone Banks has become even in Epsom and other areas, where they can also turn a blind eye to most things but him no longer.. I love to discuss him with the Chinese, they know a lot about such ‘arrangements’
    In the end it may simply take an arrogant John to take down an arrogant John..
    Incidentally the more some yell Green Taliban and Commie and scream about the farrrrrrrrrrr left or other similarly comparable American teaparty invective, the more determined some I know are, to show just what NZ would look like under that kind of centre right coat with a thoroughly deranged conservative hard-core of backers who it would seem now view Key with barely veiled contempt.
    Spinning words to alter ‘perceptions’ as I said at the start either ‘arguably’ accidentally, carelessly or deliberately is a bit like relying on ‘selective polling’. I really dont think the majority of Kiwis or others here will be suckered 3 times in a row, many more are hurting much more now despite the doublespeak double-dutch presented in the mainstream. No Rugby World Cup to distract next year either.

    As

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  60. freemark (615 comments) says:

    Hello JT.. are you blond this week?..:)

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  61. freemark (615 comments) says:

    blondwithaniq says “since Mr. Key in 2013 has long since abandoned any faux scruples”

    I’m glad JK doesn’t have those faux scruples….real ones are much better. At least his caring is not “faux”, nor his concern for NZ’ers, nor his economic skills, nor his integrity.

    The red mixed with green..
    strangles the lifeblood..
    some just can’t see it..
    or don’t care…

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  62. blondewithaniq (24 comments) says:

    Oh dear Mark. No! I am black and white this week, because reversing ‘political propagandised perceptions’ actually need the abilty & flexibilty to flow and morph according to the issue. Perhaps people like you who cannot really think beyond the confines of ‘block colours’ think that ‘red mixed with green strangles the lifeblood’ is clever?
    In reality it is such an emotively mixed metaphor that any creative who uses colours
    would respond likewise..
    Stick with the sh*t you know that is the colour you just mixed, whereas I use them alone on their own merits.
    I also do care, which is why your cynical misuse of a very conflicted woman elsewhere is sad but hardly surprising..
    FTW still full of docile females or so desperate for attention ones, who don’t challenge you enough either?
    Is that why you are concerned about my hair colour now?
    Incidentally look up the definition of ‘scruples’.. Bit like ‘principles’ and open to interpretation for people who have theirs ‘created’ for them!

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  63. freemark (615 comments) says:

    Aaahhh, the Standard tactic.. used there, here and everywhere.. when someone disagrees they must be Homophobic, Misogynist, Sad, Alcoholic, Mentally Ill.. or a combination. Some (actually most) of us don’t need to resort to these dishonest labels when “challenged” as you put it… some of you do… No “blocking” on KB, how are you going to cope with that? Better go and cook up a plan with Batshit….

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  64. Steve (North Shore) (4,587 comments) says:

    M T Paddock.
    How many can they count?

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  65. xorgnz (1 comment) says:

    Here’s the math as I understand it.

    To work out how many duplicates there are, determine what fraction the sample is of the population, and square this to determine the number of duplicates expected to be found in that sample*. The sample is 1/14 of the overall pool, meaning that it would have 1/194 the duplicates. Then, the expected number of duplicate signatures should be 32204.

    You could naively calculate 32204 / 393778 to get 8.18% of total signatures being duplicates duplicates of another signature. But, there’s issues with that.

    The first is that you have to remove the number of duplicates from the denominator, as otherwise you’re calculating the number of signatures that are duplicates, not the number of signers who signed twice. If you remove them, you get 32204/(393778-32204) = 32204 / 361574 = 8.9%
    The stats report gives 11%, which presumably comes from 32204/293000 = 11.0%, where 293000 is the estimated number of counted signatures once duplicates and ineligible signatures are removed.

    The question, then, is why you also remove ineligible signatures from the denominator. For this to make sense, you have to assume that duplicate ineligible signatures are not counted as duplicates, but merely ignored. It’s not immediately clear if this is the case in the briefing notes that DPF provides, but it’s implied to be what’s done in a Dept of Stats working paper that describes how petitions are counted:
    http://www.stats.govt.nz/surveys_and_methods/methods/research-papers/working-papers/petition-estimators-and-their-variance-10-04.aspx

    I also did some digging at other activist driven petitions in the US, and found examples in the 8-14% range. I think there’s probably a case to be made that the more passionately a group feels about an issue, the more mistakes there are to be made. The use of driven petition collectors would also result in duplicates. I know from petitions I’ve helped with in the past that a reasonable proportion of people will sign just to get you to leave them alone, often saying they think they might have already signed. It’s particularly problematic when there’s multiple petitions or multiple petition collectors, as it’s harder for the casual signer to notice whether they’re signing something they already have.

    11% is outside the range of recent petitions, but it’s not an absurd number, nor one that makes me suspect foul play.

    * http://www.statschat.org.nz/2013/05/09/counting-signatures/ discusses this

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