A political 12 days of Christmas

December 25th, 2007 at 9:47 am by David Farrar

It’s US-centric but still quite funny. I love the final line in each rendition.

Hat Tip: Grouchy Old Cripple

NORAD tracking Santa over NZ

December 25th, 2007 at 9:25 am by David Farrar

A Christmas Carol

December 25th, 2007 at 7:58 am by David Farrar

Merry Christmas from Snoopy

December 24th, 2007 at 4:58 pm by David Farrar

The YouTube Royal Channel

December 24th, 2007 at 9:02 am by David Farrar

The Queen has set up her own royal channel on You Tube. There is some amazing historical footage on there.

Just $70 will keep a billboard alive for another day

December 20th, 2007 at 3:00 pm by David Farrar

Okay the Free Speech Coalition has spent all its money. In fact slightly over-spent. So the billboards are only up for a month.

But just $70 will keep a billboard alive for another day. If you go and donate $70 at the Coalition’s website, we’ll keep a billboard up for another day. We can even proudly allocate a day to you, so you can claim the credit for a particular billboard on a particular day.

If you wish to donate more than $70, that of course is great. For those “rich pricks” as our Minister of Finance calls them, we have the following options:

  1. $70 for one non-Auckland billboard for one day
  2. $100 for one Auckland billboard for a day
  3. $150 for two non-Auckland billboards for a day
  4. $200 for one Auckland billboard for a weekend
  5. $500 for a billboard for a week
  6. $2,000 keeps a billboard up for an entire month. 11 of these and they are up until election day.
  7. $5,000 gets you an entirely new billboard with a new authoritarian and a new location for a month. You can pick to have it in your local town or suburb.
  8. $10,000 gets you your own personal billboard for three months

And if you are a “poor prick”, you are very welcome to donate less than $70.  Many supporters have given $20 and they are valued.

Send me your Gourmet Food Store viral e-mails

December 20th, 2007 at 12:41 pm by David Farrar

A computer scientist, Dean Pemberton, wants to do a study of how widespread the Gourmet Food Store viral e-mails travelled.

If you received either of the e-mails to and from Margaret from the Gourmet Food Store e-mails, can you please send them to dean@curia.co.nz. By the way Dean doesn’t work for me – I control the domain so the address will forward to him.

Dean will not publish any of the names or organisations it has been sent to, or forwarded onto.  All results will be anonymised.  Do froward the whole e-mail if possible including all the cascading names it has been though as that will help measure the depth and breadth of it.

Feel free to bring this request to the notice of people you know who received or sent on the e-mail.

A second e-mail from the Gourmet Food Store

December 20th, 2007 at 6:40 am by David Farrar

The Southland Times has a story on the e-mail from Margaret McHugh of the Gourmet Food Company to a staffer at Ray White.

Well a second e-mail has just hit the inboxes – involving a different customer, back in mid September.

This one starts with an e-mail of complaint from a staffer at Trust Investments Management Limited.

Hello Margaret

Thank you for catering the breakfast for us on Thursday 6 September 2007.

We ordered this breakfast from you based on the very good quality and presentation of the first breakfast and lunch you supplied.

Unfortunately, we were disappointed with both the quality and presentation of the breakfast supplied, and we wish to comment as follows:

· Baps filled – We received filled Muffins instead. These were too big and unattractive with minimal filling.

· Filled Pockets – Supplied as requested but were not fresh and the fillings were messy; some pockets had strips of bacon which consisted of fat and rind.

· The Savory and Sweet Mini Muffins were a little tough.

· The Muesli slices were very nice.

· The Fresh Fruit platter which was ordered later, was also disappointing, for example the ends of the orange were included which consisted mainly of the white plinth.

We would appreciate if, in future our request cannot be met, you contact us to discuss alternatives/options.

Thank you

Then the first reply, which as per the other e-mail attacks rather than acts on the complaint:

I am sorry you were not happy with your clients breakfast, I am rather confused to say the least that you waited 4 1/2 days to inform me you were disappointed in the consumed breakfast food, it is rather unbelievable. If I was so unhappy I would have been on the telephone immediately and had the food replace forthwith. Of which I would have been more than pleased to do after having seen it again for myself.

Re fruit platter what is white Plinth. The only Plinth I know of is a square slab at the base of a column or pedestal. If you wish to discuss this further I am on the numbers below please don’t send an email it is so time consuming and impersonal . Regards Margaret

Then a reply back:

Hello Margaret

Thanks for your reply. The breakfast on Thursday 6 September commenced 7.30, the food was delivered at 7.20. Many of our guests had already arrived.

Could you have provided a replacement breakfast in 10 minutes?

The 4 ½ days to inform you of our disappointment included a 2-day weekend.

All in all we are surprised with the unprofessional response to our complaint.

Thank you

Now we get the flamer.  Note the pattern with both employees – threatening to get them in trouble with their bosses. Also I love the suggestion the food should have been preserved in case it had been tampered with!

I guess because I am the boss I can speak truthfully and not be afraid for my job, Does your boss know you are wasting their time emailing petty nonsense. In my 30 yrs as a successfully trained professional caterer I have never had to respond to such nonsense.

Please don’t use Gourmet Food Store again we are not used to part timers who have to much time on their hands,have no understanding, good manners and common sense in dealing with a complaint there and then. You never gave us an opportunity to amend what you said was wrong, we or course were never given the food to make an assessment of our own just some nicely typed out letter fully or criticism with no proof, not good enough !!!!!! The food could have been tampered with for all we know.

May I suggest in closing you spend a little more time in finding the word your were looking for in English relating to the orange so I can ask my supplier to remove it before he sends them to me in future.

I’ve also heard from a friend that she has had a similar e-mail in the past also. Looks like a pattern here!

The Gourmet Food Store

December 18th, 2007 at 3:17 pm by David Farrar

Go over to Spare Room and read this e-mail exchange involving the Gourmet Food Store.

I, like many, have also been forwarded the original e-mails and reading them in order is even more painful than the extract Ana has put on Spare Room.  I think that store is going to lose a lot of business, like the marquee company last year.

The Kiwiblog 2007 Awards Winners

December 18th, 2007 at 2:06 pm by David Farrar

Over 600 votes cast in just 24 hours.  And we have some winners.  Now remember this is not a scientific poll but a survey of whom Kiwiblog readers have rated the best.

MP of the Year

[14%] Helen Clark
[5%] Michael Cullen
[40%] Bill English
[41%] John Key

A not surprising clear preference to National here, with John Key narrowly ahead (just 5 votes in it) of his deputy for MP of the Year.  Their combination seems a winning one to date.

Labour MP of the Year

[23%] Helen Clark
[7%] Michael Cullen
[11%] David Cunliffe
[38%] Phil Goff
[8%] Steve Maharey
[13%] Trevor Mallard

Phil Goff a clear winner as Labour MP of the Year.  Widely regarded as having had an error free year and with the retirement of Maharey and sin binning of Mallard is now the heir apparent.

National MP of the Year

[49%] Bill English
[20%] Chris Finlayson
[31%] John Key

And a landslide win for Bill English as National MP of the Year.  English has impressed many with his dissection of the Electoral Finance Bill.

Minor Party MP of the Year

[25%] Sue Bradford (Green)
[12%] Ron Mark (NZ First)
[35%] Heather Roy (ACT)
[29%] Pita Sharples (Maori)

Heather Roy obviously has won the hearts and minds of many on the right.  However Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples has almost as many fans, and Sue Bradford also gained an impressive number of votes.
Press Gallery Journalist of the Year

[16%] Jane Clifton
[30%] Colin Espiner
[34%] Fran O’Sullivan
[20%] Audrey Young

Associate press gallery member Fran O’Sullivan’s blunt no nonsense style sees her pip blogging political editor Colin Espiner for 1st place.
Public Servant of the Year

[38%] Kevin Brady
[32%] Erin Leigh
[6%] Hugh Logan
[15%] David McGee
[9%] Ros Noonan

Auditor-General Kevin Brady wins the award for public servant of the year, with whistle-blower Erin Leigh a close second.  Highly respected retiring Clerk of the House David McGee gets a creditable third place.

Kiwiblog will write to the winners informing them of their cyber-awards.

Crapped on again

December 16th, 2007 at 3:28 pm by David Farrar

I was in the grounds of Parliament yesterday, being interviewed by Brian and Helen for their “Following Alexis West” documentary about NZ’s switch to MMP.

Around ten minutes into the interview and whooosh a pigeon craps on both Brian and myself.  I’m not sure the footage will make it into the final film, but as you can imagine my reaction wasn’t one of great pleasure.

Ironically it was only a couple of days earlier that I was recounting to someone at the press gallery party how I first met one of the PM’s press secs – being the last time I was crapped on.  I worked for a small firm that did advertising and PR for Porirua City Council and we arranged a photo op at a landfill for one of the Councillors. The journalist, Juli, worked for Porirua News and we both got crapped on by a pigeon.  We still argue about whether the bird was aiming for the PR person or the journalist.  Ironically Juli is now a press secretary (a version of PR) and I’m now a blogger (a neathandal version of the journalist species).

I suppose being crapped on every 12 years is not too bad a record, but frankly twice is more than enough.  It wouldn’t be so bad if I had a gun to retaliate with!


December 13th, 2007 at 10:27 am by David Farrar

The Manawatu Standard reports:

The man thought he was in for an early Christmas present when he got an alluring text offering him the friendly company of two young women.

They invited him around for some close attention, helpfully suggesting he get his gear off to save time. So off he went, reached the house, and threw his clothes through the front window prior to entering.

Trouble is, it was all a joke and the householder wasn’t two little lovelies pining for passion, but someone else altogether – who promptly called the police.

Seriously, how stupid (or horny) do you have to be to just walk naked into a house you’ve not been to before, merely on the basis of text messages?

History will judge Bush a great President?

December 11th, 2007 at 3:51 pm by David Farrar

Scott Adams puts the case for placing George W Bush on Mount Rushmore one of the great Presidents ever.  The rationale:

President Bush famously promised to do something about the Axis of Evil: Iraq, Iran, and North Korea. That was a top priority. How’s he doing so far?

Iraq didn’t have any weapons of mass destruction, but by restricting inspectors, it acted as if it did. That is almost as dangerous as having a nuclear weapon because it causes your neighbor (Iran) to build its own nukes, just to be safe. It turns out they were doing just that.

Recently we learned that Iran stopped its nuclear bomb program in 2003. That’s about the same time the U.S. was disemboweling its next door neighbor based on the suspicion of having a nuclear weapons program. Iran probably noticed. History will credit President Bush for removing the threat of nuclear war from the Middle East.

North Korea has also discontinued its nuke program, thanks in part, history might acknowledge, because when the U.S. invaded Iraq, it went after the leadership first, including sons. That’s the sort of thing that gets your attention if you are a dictator. As with Reagan’s Star Wars defense plan, the U.S. under President Bush seemed crazy enough to attack North Korea. The threat was entirely credible. That, plus China’s pressure, neutralized North Korea.

Meanwhile, Libya surrendered its nuclear ambitions without even being asked. Credit President Bush for that one too.

Terrorism was a priority during the Bush administration. History won’t blame him for the first attack on 9/11, but it certainly might credit him for the fact no other attacks happened during his two terms. That’s a perfect record on homeland security.

Discuss: Is the theory correct?

Responsible Drinking

December 7th, 2007 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

The video is from 42 below about drinking responsibly over the holiday season. To do their part for safe drinking, 42 below are providing chauffeur driven cars from 7 pm to 11 pm to groups of 2 – 3 who between them collect six stamps (one stamp per 42 below drink). So a great way to get home if you’ve been enjoying their product.

National Caucus Party

December 6th, 2007 at 9:42 am by David Farrar

The annual year end National Caucus Party was last night, and it was a great night.  Somehow I was again one of the last to leave but it was at a fairly respectable bit before 2 am.

They had a band instead of the traditional karaoke, which might be why things didn’t drag on quite so late as some years. But I enjoyed the change to the band.

I was surprised by the number of former senior Beehive staffers (who worked for the current Government) who were there – I think they can sniff the wind.  In fact everyone there was in a pretty buoyant mood.

Had good attendances from the minor parties – lots there from the Maori Party,NZ First, United Future, Act and the Greens.  It’s actually one of the things I love most about these events – you have really great discussions with people even though you disagree with them on lots of things – it’s much more fun than talking to people who agree with you.  For that reason I always enjoy chatting to the Green MPs and staff.

I’ve noted you can almost classify people into two groups when it comes to drinking.  There’s that very small minority who get aggressive and become arseholes and try to pick arguments.  But there’s the vast majority who just get relaxed, happy, friendly and you just have a great time talking to them.

For reasons of self preservation (and manners), I don’t go into detail about what people say, or what happened.  But I will make the observation that some of Labour’s support parties are very very unhappy with them over how they have handled the Electoral Finance Bill.

One funny event was when some of the MPs were trying to persuade a former MP to come into the House and seek the call on the Electoral Finance Bill, and see if the Speaker/Chairman actually twigged on.  The plan wasn’t executed but it would have been hilarious to see it attempted.

It was a pretty large turnout.  As well as the MPs and staff, you have press gallery and other journalists. a few former staff like me, some former MPs, lots of people from various industry groups, some lobbyists, MPs and staff from other parties which are not deemed to be enemies (ie all parties except Labour and Progressive) and a few others.  Again it is part of what makes it such a good night – so many people to talk to – you end up having conversations on every topic from Shortland Street to Treasury fiscal projections of revenue, to media gossip, to republicanism, to the Electoral Finance Bill.

A very dumb blonde

December 3rd, 2007 at 5:21 pm by David Farrar

Enjoy this three minute clip from a game show. Just laugh along.

Still in love with the Blackberry Curve

December 3rd, 2007 at 8:36 am by David Farrar

Well I’ve had one for four days now, and am still very much in love with my new toy.  I’ve discovered it has a 1 GB hard drive, so one can still thousands of photos in it before it even gets close to full. Also the camera can do up to a 5x zoom.

The GPS works fine, and is faster than the GPS in my car.  Unlike the car GPS though, no close up maps of NZ are yet available which is a small pain.  Hopefully they will become available before too long.

Getting the e-mail to work was very easy.  Just clicked onto the configure e-mail button, then logged into Blackberry with my existing username and password. It then recognises I have a different blackberry ID, and it asks whether e-mail should now be sent to this new one.  You say yes, and that’s all that is needed.

Yet to try out the video player on it – will try copying a TV show onto it and seeing how well it works.

Guess who said this

December 2nd, 2007 at 7:38 pm by David Farrar

At Auckland Koru Club on Thursday and run into a fairly well known individual.  After exchanging pleasantries we discussed where we were both heading – myself to Wellington and she was going to Cromwell.  She was not looking froward to the flight, stating:

And the plane I’ll be travelling on will probably be smaller than some of the dicks I have had.

A boastful girl!

I won’t name her, or confirm guesses, but people can have fun guessing.

I know I said I won’t lead a protest again …

November 24th, 2007 at 10:50 am by David Farrar

But for this protest, I could just make an exception!

I support their right to fight such discrimination.

Finally given in

November 19th, 2007 at 7:30 am by David Farrar

I’ve finally given into the temptation.

Day after day as Family First has complained about Californication, I’ve resisted the urge to watch it, as I don’t have time to watch another TV show.

As they knocked off sponsors one by one and reported daily progress, I’ve resisted the urge.

But this weekend it got too much for me as I read this press release from Family First:

The latest episode featured explicit sex scenes, constant explicit sexual talk and innuendo, was littered with foul language including 19 uses of the ‘F’ word, the young daughter calling her father an a**hole and boasting about having a shirt that says “Jesus is a C Word”, drug use, and an underage girl sexually touching the lead character.

They actually counted up the number of times the “F” word was used! 🙂

I give in.  My self control is not strong enough.  Just as I became hooked on Southpark after reading how Christian Heritage deplored the movie for having a homosexual sex scene between Saddam Hussein and Satan, I have now watched one episode of Californication and am grabbing a copy of the episode already shown.

My biggest fear is that one day Family First will condemn Coronation Street, and I’ll feel obliged to start watching that also!

Who magnetised our coins?

November 14th, 2007 at 2:24 pm by David Farrar

It seems our new coins are magnetic!

Camel Beauty Contests are evil

November 10th, 2007 at 10:05 am by David Farrar

No, this isn’t a fake story.

A leading authority of Saudi Arabia’s hardline school of Islam has condemned camel beauty contests as evil, saying those involved should seek repentance in God.

From Reuters.

Bad Planning

November 2nd, 2007 at 1:58 pm by David Farrar

A bad planning award to Singapore Air for introducing first class suites with double beds, but then failing to sound proof the cabins, with the end result that couples are asked to refrain from joining the mile high club.  Sort of defeats the whole point of having the suite and a double bed I would say!

Kiwis lead the world

October 13th, 2007 at 8:37 am by David Farrar

New Zealand has topped the world in another global survey.

Is it best place to do business? No.  (2nd there) Is it best education system? No.

It’s female promiscuity.

Yes Kiwi women have an average 20.4 sexual partners compared to the global average of 7.3. Austrian men are at 29.3.  Kiwi blokes are back at 16.8 – still above global average of 13.2 for men.

We were the only country where women have more sexual partners than men.

And on behalf of the men, may I say thank you 🙂

New Toy

October 9th, 2007 at 2:18 pm by David Farrar

Yay, I am now the proud owner of a Street Pilot c320 GPS system.

I’m about to hit the road again for another five days, so will be a great investment.  Much easier than printing off Google Maps for all my destinations.