Thursday, May 31, 2018


I hold strongly to the view that under the bastard system of government we have inflicted on ourselves (MMP) the two major parties need coalition partners.   While it is theoretically possible for a major party polling in the mid 40s to form a government in its own right depending on the quantum of the 'wasted vote' it would be courageous (as in Sir Humphrey) indeed for a party to base its election strategy on that proposition.

National right now has no coalition partners.   ACT is reduced to a rump of Seymour groupies.   It has no gravitas, no future.   The Maori Party has done its dash.   The losers who make up the voting demographic in the Maori electorates have reverted to type much akin to the battered female who 'enjoys' a love/hate relationship with her partner.    Simon Bridges has indicated 'they' are talking to alternatives but, no matter how that plays out, National is starting from well behind the eight ball.  It does however hold an ace card ... Epsom.

So far few have questioned the outlook for Labour.   The last two TV1 and TV3 polls indicate rough waters ahead for them and more so for 'their' erstwhile coalition partners.   The budget failed to produce the expected bounce for the CoL.   Their combined numbers have dropped and, while Labour's vote has held up, National has has done better however increasing its lead over Labour.    You factor in the 'winter of our discontent' shortly upon us with petrol prices increasing by the day and set soon to skyrocket; power prices going up; angst in the tertiary sector over a budget that failed to deliver; the proposed easing of bail laws which will see more criminals free to roam the streets; the developing Kiwibuild fiasco and 6 months from now the polls are going to make interesting reading indeed.  

So where does that leave the Greens and NZ First? ..... well already you are starting to see signs of what has become the norm with minor parties in a coalition government.   The major party (this time Labour) has started to cannibalise them.     What can Labour do to ensure the Greens and NZ First have a future?

Lets start with the Greens.   The halcyon days when then they were polling around the 15% mark are long gone and won't be coming back.   The self inflicted wounds resulting from the Greens embracing Me Too's benefit and electoral fraud turned off many supporters.   The election of Marama Davidson as co-leader appears to have gone down like a cup of warm sick while their walking away from the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary proposal and their craven caving in to the NZ First demand to remove surveillance cameras from the commercial fishing fleet has alienated many other environmentalists.

I have previously opined that bedrock Green support was around 7-8%.   No more ... it's in the 5-6% range and that puts them on the cusp of being booted out of parliament.   If those sort of numbers bed in then Labour might well have to consider flicking 'them' a seat.   Wellington Central is a possibility but I'm not sure how 'Robbo' would react to that.   Also remember that WC is not necessarily a 'safe seat for Labour.   While Robinson enjoyed a margin of close to 10,000 votes over Willis (now also a MP) in the Electorate vote the Party vote result was much closer (just 3,300).   In both the Electorate and Party vote Shaw trailed a distant third.    Risk and reward for Labour.

NZ First is unlikely to make 5% even with WRP standing.   If he doesn't stand they won't.   8 months out from the election and their Deputy Leader has been dumped and another MP embroiled in the attempted blackmail of a National MP.    If NZ First is to be returned then Labour will have to attempt to engineer a win for them in an electorate seat.   Northland will be that seat.   Winston won't stand again here and when he lost the seat he walked away from it and shut down all the electorate 'shell' offices he established in Kerikeri, Kaitaia, Dargaville and Wellsford.

Shane Jones, who has anointed himself to stand in Northland, didn't have the whit to attempt to maintain a presence here piggybacking on WRP despite him (Jones) living in the electorate and having the resources to do so.   Fits the profile.   Jones is an arrogant and lazy sod who has been rejected decisively in every electorate he has ever stood in (4).    He is up against Matt King who is already making a name for himself as a quiet achiever. Matt's electorate 'Battle Bus' is about to roll which will see Matt working the electorate on a regular basis.   Shane Jones doesn't 'do' electorate work.   Labour is on a hiding to nothing in backing him.   Problem is that there is no other option.

The scenario that has both the Greens and NZ First out of parliament come 2000 is, perhaps, not too far fetched.   If that happened and were the TV1 and TV3 vote to be reflected in the result then Labour would indeed be a one term government.

Lotsa water I know but food for thought.

Too Good To leave Behind

Wednesday, May 30, 2018


In the midst of a pay claim for "nurses" where they appear still disatisfied with what many see as a good offer and DHBs  continually being portrayed as underfunded,  Midland Health, that includes Dannevirke,  has just made three appeals against a local licensing authority granting a renewal for New World Dvke to continue to sell beer and wine  from their establishment just east of Highway 2 in the center of town.

There was no submission opposing from police, public or any other party from the small rural town in Southern Hawkes Bay.
The central point in the opposition came from the "angle of the display" for the demon drink in the New Zealand owned grocery franchise retail layout.
The District Licensing Authority granted the application dismissing the Angle Objection!
The DHB appealed to the DLC and lost!
The DHB appealed to the "Alcohol Regularity and Licensing Authority and Lost!
The DHB then appealed to the High Court and again lost!

Now I have no knowledge as to what all that cost but if some wowser in Midland Health thinks that was money well spent, might I suggest a termination of the sinecure and a deduction of the sum wasted from the grant money next allocation.
I accept the proliferation of alcohol outlets in some areas where such promotion might not be seen as appropriate resulting in a citizen group opposing a 'new' licence but this money spent on a renewal in isolation in a town that afaik is no more or less troubled dealing with problems of alcohol abuse outside accepted norms, needs some correction.

hattip Kiwiblog.


During my life spent in primary production one of the most stressful segments arose around the determination to eradicate TB. Bovine Tuberculosis is one insidious little beastie with a remarkable ability to thwart detection.

Once every  year all bovine stock were mustered and put up a race where a MAF person would inject a small dose of reagent  in the soft skin  between the tail and the rump, three days later that crat would return and scan by feel for a lump at that injection site and if a reactor (a palpable lump) was discovered that beast would be slaughtered asap where TB would be confirmed  post mortem but alas sometimes the animal would be a "clear".
One reactor and the whole heard would be placed on 'movement control' requiring any cattle for sale to carry a "white ear tag" and receive  a discounted price.

We farmed in an area of the Wairarapa where our eight neighbours all went on and off "movement control" over the twenty years yet surprisingly  we managed to remain "Clear" throughout the two decades we operated there.
It did not come easy, I wish to forget how many nights were spent sometimes more than five hours on an open quad bike seeking the dreaded Possum, an uninvited guest that could become infected with Bovine TB but before inevitable death could infect pasture from suppurating lesions, leaving infected grass to be ingested by a grazing beast and a "reactor"  created

Bovine TB is all but eradicated, something I doubted I would see, and now a similar program is to be carried out for Micoplasma bovis.
The cost is claimed to be almost a billion dollars, and that will be only part of the total.
I understand Mpb is harder to detect and the tests are said to be even less reliable than the Reagent test for Bovine TB. A carrier of Mpb is  symptom  free but should a heard come under stress from feed shortage, calving, weather or similar, the little Mpb beggar will awaken and suddenly create mayhem.
With Beef and Dairy such a large part of our economy it has been deemed to be "worth a try" and I support that strategy but unless some advances in detection allied to stricter recording of movement of cattle of all classes it is a monumental task and I fear doomed to fail.

Our biggest risk in preventing infections of TB came from  non bovine vectors, Possums and Deer, Mpb otoh  only requires a transfer of snot across a fence and the natural instincts of cattle to be inquisitive leave that a ready property to property transfer opportunity.
Back in the olden days my turangawaewae was on the old station boundary of two great stations of the Amuri, Lyndon and Leslie Hills.
Lyndon had scab and rabbits so Rutherford of Leslie Hills built a second fence at a distance from the boundary, and what a fence! All steel "T" irons for strainers, flat standards between, eight number eight wires, then attached heavy rabbit netting dug into the soil around six inches to make life difficult for Brer Rabbit, from  The Waiau River to the east to the Hanmer in the west, some ten miles.
At least today with modern technology a hot wire will give a good degree of prevention from "Kissing cows".

There will be some heavy costs monetary, personal and professional for owners of valuable herds, some built up over decades of breeding, feeding and husbandry, all being sent to slaughter.
The cattle based industries that has seen NZ endure and recover from a world wide recession in a shape envied by many,  will need more than dollars.
The people at the front line will need a change in the present attitudes from media and the population across the nation.

Unless someone has a plan to replace the billions we enjoy from dairy and beef, best cease with the cowardly denigration and get behind what I see as a very courageous decision that I sincerely hope delivers.

Monday, May 28, 2018


Well maybe a footnote on page nine or a headline well down on an internet site

Stephen Christopher Yaxley - Lennon, aka Paul Harris, Andrew McMaster, Stephen Yaxley, and more relevantly "Tommy Robinson" is a right wing protester who is now languishing in custody for "breaching the peace" on the pavement outside the Leeds Crown Court where inside a bunch of nine scum are on trial for grooming young "girls" for the enjoyment of certain young men who may be involved with the world of  religion.

In a sickening display by the heirs and successors to the bastion of freedoms evolved often at high cost over nearly a thousand years, Tommy was arrested,  charged and sentenced to thirteen months in the slammer because mainly, he would not cease his personal crusade that was deemed anti "establishment'' and a Judge, one 'Justice' Marsen, did his bit to enforce the will of the ruling class of Britain.

In a land where over eight hundred years ago, then King John was forced to accede to what was then a quaint notion that even 'peasants' had rights in  a ground breaking bit of unbelievable liberal thought resulting in the signing of what is now referred to as Magna Carta, and the torturous path to "Free Speech" began, alas such  arrant nonsense is now anything but Free.
There is a corner of Hyde Park in Kensington appropriately named 'Speakers Corner, within a stones throw of the infamous Tyburn Gallows where countless thousands of citizens made their last "free Speech" before the rope cut them off,  where anyone with a passion can soap box until their passion is quenched.
Many notable anti establishment figures have availed themselves of this bulwark of democracy, Karl Marx, buried in nearby Highgate Cemetery, Vladimir Lenin, Oswold Mosely, various Suffragettes, 'George Orwell' (Lionel Blair), and many more, talked themselves hoarse without sanction from Plod.
Not so for someone who opposes the steady march of Islam through the traditions of constitutional UK.  Outspoken Tommy Robinson was quickly silenced and the Judge who did the dirty work for the Establishment was said to have been observed, laughing at a window when his shameless use of judicial power saw Yaxley - Lennon carted off with indecent haste, convicted and sentenced within a few hours, to over a years imprisonment,  all in secret after Robinson was bundled into a Paddy Wagon.

Dollar to a knob of goat poo there is a place of "worship" not too far from that court house where any Imam on any Friday can exhort his faithful to far more worrying acts than Tommy "live streaming" on his Cellphone from a public pavement outside a Crown Court.


Still going strong at the age of ninety-five, the remarkable Dr Henry Kissinger today celebrates his birthday.

He has penned a long dissertation on the subject of artificial intelligence.  So long was it that I gave up at somewhere around a quarter of the way through.  Never the less, he sounds a warning that humankind needs to take care when dealing with this potentially dangerous phenomenon.

There are no signs of dementia in this old war horse whose long career includes service as (a) a sergeant in the US Army during WW2, (b) National Security Adviser to the President and (b) Secretary of State.

Love him or hate him, he will be rated as one of the Great Men of the twentieth century.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

A Stupid Little Girl......

......has written a column for the H on S in which she lambastes the National Party for something which was never said.

Speaker Mallard says he heard it but 'it' can be found neither in Hansard nor on the parliamentary TV sound tracks.  (Do they still have radio broadcasts?)

I never cease to be amazed at the number of different ways telling the plain truth about someone or something can be found somehow to be 'unparliamentary.'

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Ho Ho Ho


While o'seas I had plenty of time to indulge my passion for history ... TV programs in Swahili aren't all that riveting.

In doing some in-depth research into Churchill I came across this letter sent to him by his father Randolph when he managed (on his third attempt) to pass the entrance examination for the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.   Winston may have been expecting something warmer .... instead he got this ... it's brutal .... I guess the only thing you can say in Lord Randolph's defence is to note at that time he was suffering from late stage syphilis ... dementia paralytica.

18 August 1893

My dear Winston

I am rather surprised at your tone  of exultation over your inclusion in the Sandhurst list.   There are two ways of winning in an  examination, one credible the other the reverse.   You have unfortunately chosen the latter method and appear to be much pleased with your success.

With all the advantages you had and all the abilities which you foolishly think yourself to possess & which some of your relations claim for you, with all the efforts that have been made to  make your life easy & agreeable & your work neither oppressive or distasteful, this is the grand result you come up with among the 2nd rate & 3rd rate class who are only good for commissions in a cavalry regiment ... now it is a good thing to put this business plainly before you.   Do not think  I am going to to take the trouble of writing to you long letters after every folly & failure you commit and undergo.   I shall not write again on these matters and you need not trouble to write any answer to this part of my of my (sic) letter because I no longer attach the slightest weight to anything you may say about your own acquirements & exploits.

Make this position indelibly impressed on your mind, that if your conduct and action at Sandhurst is similar to what it has been in other establishments ... slovenly, happy-go-lucky, harum scarum ... then my responsibility to you is over.   I shall leave you to depend on yourself giving you merely such assistance as may be necessary to permit of a respectable life.   Because I am certain that if you cannot prevent yourself from leading the idle, useless unprofitable life you had during your schooldays & later months, you will be a mere social wastrel one of the hundreds of public school failures, and you will degenerate into a shabby unhappy & futile existence.   If that is so you will have to bear all the blame for such misfortunes yourself.   Your own conscience will enable you to recall and enumerate all the efforts that have been made to give you the best of chances which you were entitled to because of your position & how you have practically neglected them all.

I hope you will be the better for your trip.  You may apply to Capt James for advice for us to your Sandhurst equipment.  Your mother sends her love.

Your affte father
Randolph S.C.

I guess that letter does much to explain his affection for his nanny Mrs Elizabeth Everest (Woom).   When he heard she was gravely ill he raced to her home in North London to sit with her until she died.   He recalled that moment in his book 'My Early Life' ... She still knew me, but she gradually became unconscious.  Death came very easily for her.   She lived such an innocent and loving life of service to others and held such a simple faith that she had no fears at all  ... she had been my dearest and most intimate friend during the whole twenty years I had had lived.

It is hard to define/describe Churchill ... Titanic orator. Drunk. Wit. Patriot. Imperialist. Visionary. Tank designer. Blunderer. Swashbuckler. Aristocrat. POW. War hero. War criminal. Conqueror. Laughing stock. Bricklayer. Racehorse owner. Soldier. Painter. Politician. Journalist. Nobel Prize-winning author. The Greatest Englishman ... the list goes on.   Each label taken alone fails to do him justice; when  taken together they offer a challenge on a par to tossing twenty jigsaw puzzles together and expecting a single unified picture to emerge.    Churchill was not that sort of man.

We have seen more 'ink' expended on him than perhaps any other person in  history ... excluding God.

Fascinating person. 


Friday, May 25, 2018


Back ... a little sun-burnt while Memsahib treated the credit-card on the basis that the world is ending well before the bank gets nasty.

NZL featured zilch in the news and wi-fi wasn't so I've been having to do a fair bit of catching up.

One item that caught my attention was the outburst by Tamati Coffey, Labour MP for Waiariki, where he labelled the good burghers of Whakatane, Palmerston North and Kapati as 'racist' for having the temerity to vote down a proposal to establish separate Maori Wards in their Council areas.

One might be forgiven for thinking it's a bit rich for a Maori MP elected in a racist seat to be banging on about the result being an attack on democracy.

The National Party has long held the view that the retention (or otherwise) of the Maori seats is for Maori to determine.   That policy is outdated.   The  Maori seats were established to give Maori a voice of their own in Parliament.   MMP changed that.   All major parties understand the need fror them to go to the hustings with a balanced list reflecting NZL society.    Maori are over-represented  in Parliament.    Six of the eight leaders or deputy leaders of the four major parties have Maori blood.   Close to a quarter of all members are Maori.   The rationale for the Maori seats has been overtaken by events ... they are an anachronism.

Maori in the Maori seats ain't gonna vote for their abolition ever ... do turkeys ever campaign for an early Xmas?  

It's time for the National Party to stand tall on the issue.   By that I mean walk the walk.   Not like the Peters Party who, last the election, talked the talk and then wimped out at the first opportunity.   And to the National MP in a general seat who once told me that if all those on the Maori roll in his electorate voted the same way as they normally did then his majority might be at risk ... then I say 'nuts' fella ... that's democracy.

Racist seats and racist wards have no place in New Zealand in the 21st century.

I Hope You'll All Be Very Happy Together

I'll bet your Tooth Fairy PM never thought anyone would take her seriously.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton is willing to consider a New Zealand offer to resettle some refugees held in offshore detention, but only if they are banned from ever coming to Australia.

Friday's Fulminations

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Thursday, May 24, 2018


Yarloop is a small saw milling town on the South Western Highway between Perth and Bunbury.

Yarloop was wiped out a couple of years ago by a devastating bush fire, with a number of lives lost.  Just up the road is the town of Harvey where today a large number of fires are burning, with winds currently gusting a 70+ kph.  Gusts of up to 120kph are forecast.

These fires have been lit by farmers burning off.

I hope they are prosecuted.

The Noose Tightens

Witness the ultimate lack of self awareness

When I read this, I thought I was reading someone critical of erstwhile FBI director James Comey.

"Dangerous time when our country is led by those who will lie about anything, backed by those who will believe anything, based on information from media sources that will say anything. "

Then I saw it was a tweet by James Comey.

Labour is cranking into it now

From the classic playbook of Helen Clark, the government is squashing dissent.

Get rid of the next possible police commissioner so your guy (or girl?) can get the job.

Stop the government being held to account in parliament.

I said it here first: The next Commissioner of Police will be Tusha Penny.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Tweet of the Week

Bracing For......... hundred and twenty kph wind gusts tomorrow accompanied by forty millimetres of rain.

Might be a heavy day for blogging and internet Spanish language lessons.

I can just see the headlines on Their ABC.

Global Weather Disruption strikes.  It's all because of carbon.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Ho Ho Ho

Friday, May 18, 2018

Friday's Fulminations

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Unfortunately our system does not allow your comments to show up in the blog post itself.  Just in the comments section.

Visitors might consider the wisdom of using moderate language.



Budget uber irony

Winston Peters, who rallied against tax breaks for the bloodstock industry during the Winebox inquiry in the late 1990's, asking for and getting tax write-offs for the bloodstock industry in 2018.

Won't he just retire already.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Trump's trying to refill the swamp

Donald Trump has done such a good job draining the swamp, that it's completely empty and needs to be filled up.
“Follow the money.” That Watergate meme is now poised to dominate the Donald Trump-Michael Cohen investigation for this news cycle — and beyond. The impetus is a document released by lawyer Michael Avenatti, confirmed by the New York Times, that revealed that a shell company Cohen created and used to pay off the porn star Stormy Daniels received $500,000 from a company linked to a Russian oligarch with ties to Vladimir Putin.

That’s not all. Cohen’s shell company, Essential Consultants LLC, received a total of $4.4 million in payments from a range of sources with an interest in influencing Trump, including the pharma giant Novartis AG, Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd. and AT&T Inc., seeking to pull off its merger with Time Warner Inc.

The giant question that follows from the payments to Cohen is what they were for — and whether any of the money in the shell company made its way into any entities owned or controlled by Trump himself.
The tremendous irony in all of this, and there are many, is that on the very day this article appeared on Bloomberg, Trump had a rally in Indiana where he led a chant of "Drain the Swamp" (I've tried to embed the video, but clearly my time away from Blogger has made me rusty).

I know, I know.  Trump rejected the money just like Sarah Huckabee-Sanders stated at the press conference, which proves he's draining the swamp.

If you believe that, then the alligators that have come from the swamp that Trump just drained have just flown past your window wearing pink tutus.

Kiwibloggers rejoice....oh hang on

Over here we have an entire thread of criticism of the Labour budget by supposed right-wing "fiscal conservatives", with their furious writings based on the fact Labour didn't spend as much as National did last year.


This One's For Andrei - Some Musings From An Inexperienced Onlooker

Adolf saw an interesting opinion piece the other day, on the possibility of a rapprochement between the USA and Russia. 

Later in another piece, there were a couple of phrases which, as I like to say, fell out and clattered onto the floor.

"......The Geneva Agreement had all the underpinnings of the Munich Agreement. The comparison is apt. Just as Munich gave Hitler more time to build up his Panzers, the Geneva Agreement gave the mullahs ten years to build the bomb.

Just as in 1930s the world failed to stop Hitler, while the viper was still in its crib, and tolerated Germany's violations of the Treaties of Versailles to allow her to rearm, the world de facto allowed Iran to ignore United Nations Security Council resolutions and continue the development of a nuclear weapon. Just as Britain sold Czechoslovakia out in 1938 to appease Hitler, the United States sold Israel out in 2013 to appease Iran........"


"Western democracies that failed to prevent two world wars suffer historical amnesia and appear to be unconcerned with the replay of Munich. Feeling safe under the American military umbrella, the leaders of the UK, France, and Germany have been imploring Trump to salvage the accord with Iran. Just as in the 1930s, the slippery slope of greed and appeasement is driving Europe toward more disasters. Paraphrasing Lenin, they are vying with each other for the rope contract."

For some time now I've wondered about these and other similarities between geo-politics of the late 1930s and those of the present day.   Some of the similarities are, I think, remarkable.

The two Asian super-powers of their respective times, Imperial Japan and Communist China both were remarkably short of strategic resources.  Things like coal, oil and iron ore back then and now.  China uses it's economic strength to buy what it needs while Japan used it's military strength to steal what it needed.

Japan made plenty of noise about its military strength and was able to conquer many smaller and weaker nations and later eject the naive and foolish British from Singapore. However, when push came to shove Japan was defeated by the might of the US economy.  Yamamoto predicted as much straight after the pearl Harbour raid.

I suggest that is where China sits currently.

Today, China makes makes a prick of itself in the South China Sea while Japan, South Korea,The Philipines and others try to look the other way, as if to say "Well we can't do much about it, so why worry?"

I suggest once Iran has been settled down by Israel, the US and their friends, the next venue for competition will be Asia with China as the centerpiece.   One sees little commentary on the relationship, if any, between China and Russia but with such a long mutual border there is potential for mischief from either side of it.  (Would China invade Russia?  Possibly.  There's a  hell of a lot of oil and agricultural potential to be had.)

At one stage I wondered if we might wake up one morning to find Putin and Xi had done a Molotov/Ribbentrop deal.  But then, if you take that analogy a step further, you would not be surprised to see shortly thereafter, Russia, The US and Western Europe in an alliance, albeit tense, taking on Red China.

For me, the enigma in the whole shebang is trying to work out 'What is China's game?   What is it really after?

('Some Musings' is what happens when you come out of hospital and have a day for the anesthetic to wear off.)

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

How fitting

It would be hard to imagine a more fitting illustration of the Trump presidency than the opening of the new US embassy in Jerusalem:  at the ceremony, various wealthy and corrupt blowhards of the US and colonial governments make pompous and self-aggrandising speeches, while a short drive away the colonists' security forces are murdering the indigenous darkies who are protesting the event.

It will be interesting to see whether we can distinguish the US government from the Russian or Turkish ones by the time his presidency comes to an end.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Nothing But Respect

Who are the politicians, past and present, for whom you have nothing but respect?   Exclude those for whom there are equal amounts of contempt and respect.      Here's my list:-

(Yesterday I posted the list of those I consider 'the bad guys.')


Curtin, Menzies, Howard, Hawke, Keating, Court, Bolte, Askin, Costello,

New Zealand

Moore, Key, English, Prebble, Douglas,


JFK, Trump, Truman, Eisenhower, Reagan, Kissinger,* Marshall,* Clinton, Bush (Snr,) Giuliani,

* They were not politicians but had more influence over affairs than did most politicians.


Lee Kuan Yew,  Netanyahu, Churchill, Thatcher, Meir, Modi, Mubarak, Imran, Sukarno, Bainimarama, Pinochet

Monday, May 14, 2018

Nothing But Contempt

Who are the politicians, past and present, for whom you have nothing but contempt?   Exclude those for whom there are equal amounts of contempt and respect, along with those who were simply tyrants.      Here's my list:-

(Tomorrow I'll post the list of those I consider 'the good guys.)


Turnbull, Gillard, Rudd, Weatheril, Andrews, McMahon

New Zealand

Peters, Ardern, Hipkins, Mallard, Harawira, Robertson, Hughes, Carter, Benson-Pope, Rowling, Palmer, Anderton


Obama, H R Clinton, Kerry, McCain, Reid, Waters, Ellison, Edward Kennedy, Gore, Quayle, Biden


Mrs Veteran and I are off tomorrow to play with crocodiles and eat exotic food and try and learn a new language.

Very limited blogging until we return at the end of the month.

May the budget be all you want it to be but I suspect not. 

Sunday, May 13, 2018


I do not share Simon Bridges' concern over the increased package of aid to pacific countries announced this week.   This is our backyard and this is where our focus should and must be.

The reality is that there is an aid gap and the Chinese government is ready, willing and able to to step up to the plate in return for .... you tell me.   

They've been quietly (and not so quietly) buying up influence in the region for the last couple of decades and we let that continue unchecked at our peril.   In that context it is heartening to see the Australian government and the EU signal their preparedness to do more because more is needed.

Like it or not we're players in an aid war where recipients can become the equivalent of  'rice Christians' ... countries prepared to play off one side off against the other in return for ever more aid. Tuilaepa Malielegaoi, the Samoan Prime Minister said as much earlier this week.    The trick for the NZL government is to ensure our aid monies is directed at enhancing the living standards of ordinary people and not on political vanity projects (or politician's pockets).  

I suspect I'm telling MFAT what they already know in spades when I say that any aid provided to Tonga requires special scrutiny.    Tonga remains a feudal kingdom beset by endemic corruption.   It is a parliamentary democracy in name only.    The real power is in the hands of Tonga's 33 'noble' families who control the land leases and a Privy Council who does the King's bidding. 

Ho Ho Ho

Saturday, May 12, 2018


As a keen student of Malaysian and Singaporean politics I never thought I would see the day when the Barisan Nasional (BN) alliance would lose power in Malaysia.    The alliance, in its various guises, but always with the United Malay National Organisation (UMNO) as the dominant partner, has been in power since Merdeka in 1957.

The BN was decimated reduced to 79 seats in the 222 seat Dewat Rakyat (Parliament) down 54 seats.    This is spite of a clear gerrymandering of electoral boundaries earlier this year in a move designed to shore up BN support.

The election saw the Chinese and Indian components of the BN (the Malaysian Chinese Association and and Malaysian Indian Congress - MCA and MIC) almost wiped out and reduced to one seat and two seats respectively.     Out of the twelve States the BN only has a majority of seats in three of them (Sabah, Perlis and Pahang).

The catalyst for the Opposition Pakatan Harapan (Party of Hope) victory was the decision of the 92 year old Mahathar Mohamad  (Malaysia's 4th Prime Minister 1981-2003) to quit UMNO in 2016 over the continuing corruption scandal that has haunted Najab Razak, the outgoing PM, and the UMNO Party for the last five years. Mahathar became the titular head of Pakatan Harapan.

While Mahathar has already been installed as the countries seventh PM it is an interim measure only.
He has indicated he will seek a Royal Pardon for the jailed opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim (his erstwhile Deputy when he was PM and who he himself had jailed on what are widely considered to be trumped up charges of sodomy ... whoever said Malaysian politics was boring?).   

UMNO lived 'high on the hog' for many years running roughshod over the opposition.    It will be 'interesting' to see how they adapt to being in opposition.   Just as interesting is how the opposition will react to being in government.   61 years is a long long time to be waiting in the wings ... not far behind Charlie boy.

On Healthy Living

Every evening Adolf enjoys a half corona cigar before dinner and another after dinner, the latter accompanied by a generous dram of single malt.

Readers will understand how it is Adolf's attention was drawn to this piece.

I salute you, Richards Overton.  Twelve large cigars per day at 112 years of age.

Phil Twyford, BA

Phil Twyford's profile page on the Labour Party website contains this:

After studying politics at Auckland University, Phil worked as a journalist and union organiser before becoming the founding Executive Director of Oxfam New Zealand.

I presume, although I cannot find confirmation anywhere, that he graduated from Auckland University with a BA.

So going forward, I will address him as Phil Twyford, BA.

The BA stands for Bullshit Artist.


NZL is enjoying near record low unemployment and strong economic growth all per courtesy of the last National government.

Yesterday self and Mrs Veteran were at a luncheon where we were seated next to a farmer from Ruawai who runs a major kumara growing operation.   He was tearing his hair out ... reason ... no workers.   Yesterday he needed fifty ... he got two.   Said that many referred to him by WINZ don't last.   Some walk off the job after one day and don't even bother to return to pick up their pay packet.

And all this from a gummit pledged to cut immigration numbers.   Labour by 20-30,000 and NZ First from 70,000 down to just 10,000.

Against that backdrop would it be churlish to ask that nice Mr Jones how he proposes to make good on his promise to get his cuzzie bros off the couch planting those one billion trees.

Meanwhile back at the farm gate kumara are rotting in the ground.    

Friday, May 11, 2018

Friday's Fulminations

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Thursday, May 10, 2018


Problem is we don't know quite what.

As I write this an aircraft is about to touch down at Andrews AFB just outside Washington with three Americans freed from prison in the DKR on the orders of Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un.

Last week in Wellington I was party to a briefing on North Korea by a senior MFAT diplomat.    He made the following points:

#1   The economic sanctions, engineered by Trump and Xi Jinping, have had a devastating effect on the North Korean economy.

#2   Kim Jong-Un is his own man.    Western educated he is NOT like his father.

#3   The North Koreans had the measure of Obama.    Talk tough but when push came to shove he wimped out.   With Trump it's different.   His very unpredictably has them 'spooked' (my words).

#4   Up until now Kim has enjoyed a symbiotic relationship with his Generals but that may be changing as technocrats in the ruling Workers Party appear to be challenging the old guard leadership with the support of Kim.

#5   Underpinning the talks that are about to talk place between Trump and Kim is the reality that the North Koreans have reneged on every agreement they have ever signed regarding their nuclear weapons program.    The West will insist on unfettered and ongoing access to the DKRs nuclear sites in return for the lifting of sanctions.   It is moot whether North Korea will agree to this.

#6   The talks could either go very well or very badly.

#7   North Korea has the largest military in the world.   The KPA has 1,106,000 active and 8,389,000
reserve and para military troops.    How will the Generals react to any attempt to scale back the military ... how does an essentially peasant economy absorb any significant demobilization?   

No-one knows for sure how this will play out.

Point #7 is mine. 

It's A Very Old Swamp

Adolf has just red an essay on Franklin D Roosevelt's inaction for two years (1942 to 1944) on the matter of Nazi persecution and murder of German Jews.   The following paragraph fell out and clattered all over the floor:- 

Understandably, FDR had other priorities and was troubled by and hindered by various factors – for example, interagency battles within the administration and the hostile swamp of the State Department in which Breckinridge Long, former ambassador and assistant secretary of state, played a major role in blocking visas for German Jewish refugees, and deliberately preventing information about mass murder of Jews from becoming known to Congress and the media.

Image result for breckinridge long

Brekenridge Long seems like a role model for the traitorous dupe John Kerry.

I must say I'm not sure what the hell FDR was supposed to do, other than win the war.   Apparently there are some who said and still say the USAF should have bombed Auswitz.  That seems to me to be a mighty strange way to help the Jewish inmates.

Hey National - Lets Do This!!

Twice in the last couple of weeks ACT's David Seymour has sat Prime Minister Ardern down on her backside sulking at Question Time with her yesterday declining to answer a fair and reasonable question - ably aided by Speaker Mallard of course. To date she easily bats away Simon Bridges questions and often uses them as a means to belittle the previous National Government and Bridges himself, something which Bridges seems incapable of dealing with as he sits there and takes it. Here is a solution - a few weeks ago The Green Party passed their weekly allocation of questions over to National and I urge National to pass that allocation on to ACT so that David Seymour has more opportunity to deal to Prime Minister Ardern and other ministers and hold them to account as is not being done at present. Lets do this.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018


My recent criticism of a beyond the fringe solution for the Akaroa waste water disposal brought some not very surprising push back.

In the light of Posy Parker's intemperate comments, reported in media, that cow numbers per Hectare might need to be capped and even reduced, in the flawed and totally dopey "Swimable River"  moronic 'lets kick all farmers and horticulturists' campaign.

For a starter for ten, just what numbers of New Zealanders might ever have an urge to ever head off to a pond in a waterway for a freekin swim?

For years now OPM spenders have built ever larger and expensive Aquatic centers complete with paddling pools, diving pools, water slides, life guards, and water so safe you might swim in it. Then some nice person brown bombs it and the water is all flushed and replaced.  Monuments to stupidity that will never cover running costs let alone any capital cost recovery. Yet citizens still drown themselves in an increasing drowning toll, year on year.  School and smaller community pools close because of the economics.

Then there is the continual embarrassment of local government failures resulting in "Unswimable Beaches" from sewerage contamination of still popular open sea areas near many of our larger metropolitan areas.  Now perhaps Posy, the suggestion from some cows meeting recently, that maybe there should be a cap and sinking lid on numbers of wannabe politicians masquerading as control freaks, is not so far from the truth.

Now. back to the hair raising idea that pumping waste water from Akaroa into the ground under pressure to below sea level is viable.   Posy has concerns that cows on the plains crapping and weeing on pastures somehow threatens Canterbury's ground water, at what ever number of cows per hectare,  congregating or standing on nature's filter of gravels many meters above the aquifiers.

The main constant that continues with opposition to all options for disposing of the treated waste from Akaroa comes from the local Maori and their Kaik Marae a few kms south of the supposedly disgusting treatment plant at Greens Point where following a combination of screening, agitation and primary treatment the resulting "porridge" is piped offshore into the harbour.  Now, I can see that in these enlightened times, that process might need a review and one solution would be to pipe that partly treated effluent further south  to the heads where the massive flushing effect of the tides will result in such minor effects being not worthy of complaint.

Of course there is an elephant in the room with Ngai Tahu opposition to any suggestion of others' poo ending in their Harbour threatening their Kai Moana.  When there is a Hui, a Tangi, or any of the commercial opportunities that are increasingly a part of Marae activities, no points for guessing what happens to the effluent generated by numbers at times in the thousands.  The deposits  of those "visitors' are flushed into grossly overloaded Septic systems designed many moons ago for a small population of Maori living on their ancestral lands and well before the present day cultural and commercial opportunities arose.

Anecdotal responses from fishermen and tourist operators using the harbour, indicate whenever a large gathering occurs at The Kaik,  the open sewer delivers untreated waste direct into the sea leading to algal blooms, effluent stench and sea lettuce growth rates drifting around the mouth of  the very small creek,  into the adjacent sea.

It is an embarrassing facet of marae life, never making an appearance in any meetings or discussions around Akaroa waste water disposal, as such  comment would be offensive and therefore forbidden.

Global Warming Strikes

Will the power go off in Victoria now that they've closed their biggest coal fired generation plant?

Victoria will receive an icy blast of wet and windy weather over the next two days with Melbourne on track to record its coldest May days in 40 years.

Solar power will be non- existent at night and

likely to see strong southerly winds affecting the Melbourne region and certainly the potential for gusts getting into above 70km/h to 80km/h,” 

with gale force winds the wind farms will shut down.

Bloody good stuff, that global warming, eh.

Oh, wash my mouth out.  It's now called Climate Disruption.  😀

Super Fund Investing In A Black Hole

As a New Zealand citizen, and therefore an investor in and potential beneficiary of the Super fund, I am 100% opposed to this investment which is stupid in the extreme.  Surely the role of the Superfund is to provide the best possible returns to the benefit of all New Zealanders and not to invest loss making ventures like Auckland Light Rail?

I consider the Trustees and Management of the Superfund are abdicating from their obligations and responsibilities if they allow this investment to proceed.  My wife and I hold KiwiSaver funds which are largely invested off shore and returning in the order of 20% after tax over the last 5 years. Obtaining similar returns should be the objective of Superfund Trustees, not investing in known black holes as they are proposing.  In saying that, I acknowledge they will make mistakes and have investments that return a loss from time to time, but knowingly entering into such an investment is a different matter entirely.

Finally they should not allow an incompetent finance minister to become involved in their investment strategies and processes.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Eas' Coas' Ref

Check Out These Perfectly Timed Sports Photos

Two Losers

As if ever you needed reminding, your brainless PM has absolutely no political sense.

(hattip The Australian)

Jacinda Ardern, Hillary Clinton

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Ho Ho Ho


Friday, May 4, 2018


If any proof was needed and those who have followed her long march to Ministerial Rank already know, Dr Meg 'Woodnt have a clue' displayed just how large the gulf of ignorance as to how business functions is for her. Almost as large as he current dress size

A doctorate in History and her penchant for using the affectation outside of academia leaves the poor woman bereft of any understanding of the daily reality, financial outcomes have for a business to remain functioning.

So, a suspected lefty minion stole an internal email from BP HQ to its regional managers on how to respond to falling market share in the Otaki region.
I know that there are some serious price competitive activities in play with pump prices across the nation and they only really surface when Gull, Waitomo, Nelson Petroleum and Oamaru based  Mckeowns  cause angst for the pie shops that sell petrol and diesel often as a sideline.
The only bit of the current setup around BP and its being hauled into a meeting with the Minister, for a slapping might come from their Pie retailing. Clearly her knowledge of marketing, margins and profitability across their now extensive product range, are all a complete mystery.

Having been involved in the introduction of a tax grab that has all the hallmarks of going nation wide, of around 25 cents per liter, to now shed Crocodile tears over a price discrepancy not even close to that which triggered her showboating, just makes her hypocrisy all the more obvious.

The first object for BP comes from making a profit just to remain in the market, clearly Shell didn't want to remain in such a small country trying to support the many outlets under the evolved systems still the mainstay across NZ.

Truck stops and unmanned card pumps are increasingly the way forward.

My last Invoice from McKeowns has 240 liters of diesel for $250 Including a card renewal of nearly $10,  while current pump prices for city diesel are now over $2.50 a liter.

Of course the PhD in History will never be buying a liter of dirty diesel, discounted or full retail so she will never even have that opportunity to learn the basics of marketing thereby revealed.
I wonder if  when BP decide the government threats and bullying are not worth the trouble and  thousands of their employees get a dcm along with directions to the nearest welfare office, would that reach past the cloth ears.
Probably not!

Friday's Fulminations

There is mild moderation.  Normal rules of blogger etiquette and courtesy to blog hosts will apply.with serious transgressors being thrown out.

Unfortunately our system does not allow your comments to show up in the blog post itself.  Just in the comments section.

Visitors might consider the wisdom of using moderate language.



Thursday, May 3, 2018


Will Police Headquarters be publishing an updated daily list of NZ Citizens and Residents they  are not investigating and/or have not charged?

The politicization of our once almost incorruptible law enforcement outfit following hard on the heals of the clear efforts for influence in  National Security oversight, now linked in media analysis, might  lead many to wonder if 1984 predictions of one Eric Blair  only delayed three decades. Blair (George Orwell) wrote that predictive expose of totalitarian government control nearly two decades before that now largely embraced date.

Ms Clark's indecent haste in the demolition of Peter Doone was bad enough, along with her shameless hanging out to dry  of those from her protection service who made the mad dash to Harewood from Waimate at an "average" speed of 128Km per hour to enable "Her Eminence"  to make a rugby match in Wellington when she had zero interest in the code. Just try to achieve that average and keep your licence with over 25kms of builtup areas including Timaru, Washdyke, Geraldine, Tinwald, Ashburton, Rakaia and the rest of the over two hundred Kms subject to  heavy traffic.

The current PM's involvement of Mike Bush in the long running rumours surrounding the alleged Sire of her unborn child,  marks another serious sign of  meddling long considered  "verboten" in the unwritten constitutional norms  of separation

One sure way to give added credence to  scuttle-but is  to involve "The Streisand Effect".

"The Lady doth protest too much, methinks, or is it the old adage, the more one excuses himself the more they accuse themself.

For one who has made considerable efforts in self promotion  over time that  precedes  his attachment to the anointed one, the thin skin seems a bit too exposed.

For contrast remember the treatment dished to Max Key and his sister Stephie any time that suited, along with their responses.

The Gender Police

Audrey Young writes about the rumour-mongering re Clarke Gayford:

Ardern will have the sympathy of every party in Parliament and all but the most stone-hearted MP.

That makes her calculated reference to "dirty politics" in her statement unfair on National.

As she well knows, 'dirty politics' is no longer a generic phrase, but was the title of the Nicky Hager book about some low-life operatives associated with the former government.

Ardern has no reason to cast a slur on the National Party by innuendo.

I know, right? It's so unfair!  You run one dirty-politics operation out of the Prime Minister's office, and when something like that happens again people just assume it's you.

The rumours themselves are a reminder of how NZ blokedom involves some seriously ugly shit. I won't risk a defamation case by pointing to the details, but you can get an idea of what they were about from this post and comments thread on Whaleoil

This comment certainly took me back to my school days: 

We didn't call him Gay Clarkeford for nothing at school.

How well I remember those guys and the vigorous, malicious intensity of their gender policing!  What delight they took in identifying supposed markers of homosexuality in their fellow pupils and dwelling on them at every opportunity! Oh, what times they were! 

What shit times they were, actually.  Being someone never much concerned with conforming to masculine gender stereotypes myself, I heard plenty from these guys when I was at school, and one of the things I liked best about leaving school was that I'd never be required to associate with such toxic personalities again. Their contempt for women, preference for the company of men and constant vigilance against signs of homosexuality always made me wonder if they were trying to persuade themselves of something.  It's depressing to see them still in action 40 years later, but I guess some things never go away.

On the plus side, smears from the right that assume calling someone gay or transgender is a deadly insult are likely to do the right far more harm than good these days.  Please by all means do continue it, and please do make clear your support for National in among the smears. The left thanks you for your cooperation in this matter.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018


why, in the commonwealth armies, a Major-General's rank insignia comprises a Second Lieutenant's single 'pip' over the crossed sword and baton while that of a Lieutenant-General comprises a Major's crown over the crossed sword and baton.

10 degrees in Wellington.   Bracing wind.