Attacking public servants

February 6th, 2013 at 7:00 am by David Farrar

Chris Hipkins attacked the appointment of Sir Maarten Wevers to the Novopay Inquiry as not being independent as he is a former head of the Department of PM and Cabinet.

Chris, of all people, knows that DPMC is scrupulously neutral and serves all Governments with total professionalism. They are totally different to the PM’s Office which is political.

Inventory at Keeping Stock blogs:

We thought more of Mr Hipkins than this small-minded affront to a respected public servant’s integrity. Sir Maarten  Weevers was appointed as head of the department of Prime Minister and Cabinet in 2004 when Helen Clark was Prime Minister. Prior to that he had been a career diplomat who had served New Zealand with distinction both domestically and overseas, and during periods in which both National and Labour governed the country. He was also Private Secretary to PM David Lange at one point in his distinguished public service career. Sir Maarten retired from his DPMC role last year.

However Chris Hipkins slights all public servants  with this indirect attack on Sir Maarten’s integrity. It is a disgraceful slur by Hipkins, which we roundly condemn. Almost all public servants manage to achieve political neutrality and separate their personal and political beliefs from their work. Sir Maarten Weevers has proved that by serving New Zealand’s two most recent Prime Ministers in an apolitical manner.

I can’t think of anyone more independent than a former DPMC head. Probably a former Cabinet Secretary only (who reports to the DPMC head).

The irony here is that Chris Hipkins has history with Novopay that he is anxious to re-write. We blogged back in November that the first Novopay contract was signed when Chris Carter was still Minister of Education. And when it was put to Hipkins on the telly last week (we can’t find the video, unfortunately) that he had been involved when he was a ministerial advisor prior to entering Parliament in 2008, he was very quick to change the subject.

Heh I’m sure he was.

Exploiting the earthquake

September 21st, 2010 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

The Press reports:

A Christchurch business has rejected union claims it told staff to come to work on the day of the Canterbury earthquake.

Unite Union alleged Garden City Bowl staff had been told in “no uncertain terms” to come to work after the 7.1-magnitude quake.

“Staff came in under duress and didn’t feel very confident. The company realised they weren’t going to make any money that day and sent the workers home. For that whole weekend they received no pay for lost hours,” Nelson-Christchurch Unite organiser Matt Jones said.

Keeping Stock has been doing an admirable job blogging on Matt Jones, and his antics in Christchurch.

At a time where most of the community are working together, Jones seems to be exploiting the earthquake to gain publicity. It is rather nasty.

However, Julie Williamson, group human resources manager, denied those claims.

She said workers were advised not to come to work on Saturday, other than two technical staff who were paid.

Williamson said staff scheduled to work on Saturday were paid and “given the required period of notice” the centre would not open on Sunday.

Some of these businesses may go under and all the staff lose their jobs. I’ve worked for a small business. Even a week of no income can be devastating.

The original note

August 2nd, 2010 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Keeping Stock discovered the original version of the Chris Carter letter. Heh.

More on Palmerston North name supression case

February 9th, 2010 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

Keeping Stock blogs:

This is of course the man convicted of possession of some 300,000 images, some of which were of child pornography. We believe that his sentence of four months’ home detention is woefully inadequate, and the name suppression order is, as we blogged yesterday, just plain wrong.

We have been made aware of the identity of the Prominent Palmerstonian- from several independant andunrelated sources. We were also made aware of something yesterday which, working in the ECE sector, we found rather chilling. After much internal debate between me, myself and I, we decided that this needed to be put in the public domain, but in a manner which would not breach the Court-ordered suppression.

So we ask this question; did Judge Grant Fraser know that the Prominent Palmerstonian’s business premises share the same street address as a pre-school? We believe that this is a very important question in the context of Judge Fraser’s decision to allow name suppression. This is indeed a case of public interest.

Ponder this; do the parents who send their children to the pre-school involved have a right to know that its neighbour had an unhealthy interest in children? For us, that’s a no-brainer; we can’t think of a clearer case where publication of the defendant’s name IS in the public interest.

I can only agree with Keeping Stock’s concerns. I would add to that, that the person’s occupation also adds to concerns over public safety that the granting of name suppression has caused.

No overseas baubles for Winston

February 16th, 2009 at 8:58 am by David Farrar

Inventory2 at Keeping Stock blogs:

We’ve just watched John Key on Breakfast ruling out any government support for Winston Peters if he seeks a plumb job overseas a la Helen Clark.

Good show. Key’s rationale is that he couldn’t trust Peters last year, and nothing has changed. It’s not rockety science, but it’s nice to see it articulated in plain English.

It is no surprise at all, but I agree nice to have on the record.

English flys King over Electoral Law breaches

April 2nd, 2008 at 10:28 am by David Farrar

NZPA reports on a flaying Bill English gave Annette King in the House yesterday over breaches of the Electoral Finance Act – they’re all being done by the three main parties which voted for it.

Keeping Stock has the exchange from Hansard – go read the whole thing.

A further example that Bill didn’t even use was the launch of the Tongan branch of Labour a few days ago.  Huge banners supporting Labour on the TV news, and no authorisation statement on them at all, plus other electoral breaches.

Also very amusing to see Winston trying to help Annette out. Winston, whose was so outraged that the media asked questions over his secret donations to charities (instead of the taxpayer), that he has now directly threatened the media with a review of media ownership laws.

Such a good look to have a senior Minister threaten the media with a change to media ownership laws, because they question him in a way he does not like.

Stolen Policies

March 3rd, 2008 at 11:30 am by David Farrar

Last week a commenter, Bogus News, has seemingly been busy doing some research. He produced this list, which was reproduced and added to by Keeping Stock:

Removing the $1,890 cap on charitable donations. Donations of any amount, up to an individual’s total net income, will be eligible for the 33.3% rebate. Removing the 5% cap on the level of donations that can be deducted by companies and Maori Authorities.
National announced on 27 February 2007
Government announced in 2007 Budget

Full-cost funding for community groups that better covers the true costs of service delivery. Less bureaucracy and fewer compliance costs.
National announced on 16 May 2007
Government announced in 2008 Prime Minister’s Statement

All payments which reimburse volunteers for actual and reasonable expenses will be tax free, regardless of the amount of the payment. Honoraria payments will be tax free up to an amount of $500 per year per person.
National announced on 16 May 2007
Government released a discussion document on 1 November 2007

A greater emphasis on trades training in schools. Giving schools more flexibility to offer their students trades and industry training opportunities outside their school-gates. Expanding school-based apprenticeship training.
National announced on 18 June 2007
Government announced on 30 January 2008

Giving the police the ability to issue time-bound, on-the-spot protection orders to protect families.
National announced on 1 November 2007
Government issued discussion document in mid-December 2007

Committing all fuel tax revenues to the National Land Transport Fund.
National had in 2005 election policy;
Labour announced on 25 July 2007

Serious consideration of Public Private Partnerships for roading projects.
National policy for many years – most recently confirmed on 17 Sep 2007;
Government announced on 7 February 2008

Allowing lines companies to invest in generation, especially from renewable energy sources.
National had in 2005 election policy;
Government introduced with Electricity Industry Reform Amendment Bill, first reading 11 Dec 2007.

Devolving carbon credits to post-1990 forest owners
National announced on 6 March 2007;
Government announced on 20 September 2007

An emissions trading scheme to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
National proposed on 6 October 2006;
Labour announced on 20 September 2007

A multi-year programme of personal tax cuts
National policy for many years;
Government announced on 7 February 2008

Reducing the rate of business tax from 33% to 30%
National had in 2005 election policy;
Labour announced in 2007 Budget

Promoting housing affordability by freeing up the supply of land and cutting building compliance costs
National announced on 5 Aug 2007;
Government announced in 2008 Prime Minister’s Statement