February 2012

Brown: “We cannot tamper in the management of the Port”

Phil Twyford attempted to put some pressure on Len Brown today over the Ports of Auckland dispute. At the same time he confirmed that Labour is saying one thing out of one side of their mouth and doing another with their now overt support of their affiliate union. Twyford also confirmed that David Shearer was lending support to the union down at the picket line.

Unfortunately for Phil Twyford it seems Len Brown is better advised, not surprising given that the competent Conor Roberts and James Bews-Hair assist him. Len Brown has been schooled up on the relevant legislation affecting the Port compnay and explains it very well this morning on 95bFM and just so we are under no illusion as to what he means he also updated his Facebook with the link.

Play of the Day

There was an interesting development today Question Time today where John Key stood and asked a supplementary question, it was loaded and it delivered a smackdown for Winston Peters.

To be fair to Winston, in today’s Play Of The Day I have included a clip where he explains his position on selling shares in Kiwibank… and what he said to Michael Cullen about foreign ownership of public assets…

Winston Peters really does have his own idiolect. He still denies that he supports the Mixed Ownership Model.

Unfit to be called parents

There is no other way to describe these two individuals. They are quite simply unfit to be parents:

Five children were found locked in a van at the SkyCity casino car park building while their parents gambled.

The children have been placed in Child Youth and Family care and their parents are under investigation.

The children, whose ages ranged from five months to eight years old, were found in the van around 11am on Sunday morning.

SkyCity said their surveillance recordings indicated the children had been locked in the vehicle for about 45 minutes.

A couple returning to their car heard the children crying and notified SkyCity security staff.

Staff found the parents upstairs gambling in the casino.

The family was taken to Auckland central police station.

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Mental Health Break

Mouse hunting fail

Major mouse hunting fail:

A US man has been charged after police say he tried to shoot a mouse in his pantry and ended up wounding his roommate.

Christian Sunil Paul, of Taylorsville, was charged yesterday (NZ time) in Salt Lake City’s 3rd District Court in the US with one felony count of discharging a firearm with injury and one misdemeanour count of possessing drug paraphernalia.

The 27-year-old told police he was aiming at the rodent during the December 20 shooting, but the bullet went through the pantry and into the bathroom, where it hit Paul’s roommate in the shoulder.

The roommate was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Court documents show authorities also found small, empty balloons and burnt tin foil in a bathroom trash can.

I wonder if drugs had any effect on his aim?

He might have avoided the problem by using a more appropriate ammunition or light gauge shot.

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Why fund the bludging Argies?

The Argentinians have more cheek than a fat man’s bum:

Did you know that your taxes are supporting loans going to Argentina? As President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner continues to make waves over the sovereignty of the Falklands, the British Government continues to vote through billions of pounds in international aid to her country, primarily through the World Bank and the EU. According to a poll by ComRes, of those few British adults who are aware of such expenditure, barely 6 per cent support it.

Barack Obama’s administration certainly isn’t in favour of such action. It has started voting against loans to Argentina from international financial institutions, and is looking for allies in its tough stance. Britain should be first in line.

While I strongly support foreign assistance – and Britain’s determination to meet the UN agreement on development aid is an example to the world – such funds need to be focused on eliminating poverty and conflict, not fattening government wallets in a G20 country that refuses to meet its global obligations.

What a waste of money. Shows the way Argies think. They are almost as shameless as Winston Peters. They have the shit kicked out of them, then they stick their hands out and keep them stuck out, then they start going on about taking back the falklands when they are known to be about as good as the Italians in a scrap.

You can’t call a VC winner a dud root

There are many things you can call a Victoria Cross winner…hero, brave, outstanding etc, but you can’t call him a dud root, as the hosts and panel of an Aussie TV show have found out:

The co-host of Channel Ten program The Circle has publicly apologised for making a sexist and disrespectful comment about Victoria Cross winner Ben Roberts-Smith, saying she had never met the Australian war hero and ‘‘felt sick’’ at the angry backlash she had received after branding him brainless.

Yumi Stynes admitted she did not know much about Corporal Roberts-Smith when she commented on a photograph of the shirtless war hero in a swimming pool yesterday, saying: ‘‘He’s going to dive down to the bottom of the pool to see if his brain is there’’.

Stynes’ guest co-host and veteran journalist George Negus had then quipped: “I’m sure he’s a really good guy, nothing about poor old Ben. But that sort of bloke, and what if they’re not up to it in the sack?”

Another host questioned whether Negus was suggesting “that he could be a dud root?”, to laughter from the audience.

But their flippant treatment of Corporal Roberts-Smith – who single-handedly stormed an enemy machine gun position in Afghanistan in 2010 – angered relatives of decorated war veterans as well as viewers, who flooded the television show’s Facebook page with furious comments.

The show’s treatment of Corporal Roberts-Smith also came under fire after the soldier revealed in a candid interview on Channel Seven’s Sunday Night that he and his wife had conceived their twin daughters through IVF treatment.

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Maryan should ask Cunners

Maryan Street is asking why a medicine change wasn’t made 5 years ago by the government:

Legislation modernising rules on who can prescribe medicines to patients and also streamlining the process for approving new drugs passed its first stage last night – five years later than it should have, according to Labour.

The Medicines Amendment Bill, which amends the Medicines Act 1981, passed its first reading yesterday with unanimous support and will now be considered by the health select committee.

Labour health spokeswoman Maryan Street welcomed the bill but questioned why the Government was only advancing the legislation now – “Why not five years ago?”

Labour was teh government in 2007, and David Cunliffe was the Health Minister. Perhaps Maryan could ask him. Or perhaps Pete Hodgson, but he has retired of course…then there is Annette King who was Health Minister up until 2005…presumably she would know something of this.

She said that similar legislation introduced by the Labour Government in 2007 was blocked by National, which was “playing naked politics” at the time by “jumping on the bandwagon of people in the supplementary medicines industry”.

Now that is very interesting. National which was in opposition because Labour commanded a majority int he House somehow “blocked” legislation…really?

This is quite silly posturing by Maryan Street. Labour clearly commanded a majority and yet failed to pass legislation and somehow she is trying to blame National?

I can’t believe the Herald just prints her assertions without even challenging the veracity of the statements. I know Tony Ryall is a very effective Health Minister but not even his prodigious powers in opposition would have been able to overturn a parliamentary majority.

The Face of a Rapist

The Turangi Rapist can now be named ahead of sentencing today after his name suppression expired:

The Turangi teenager who admitting raping a five-year-old girl as she slept in a caravan can now be named.

Name suppression lapsed for 16-year-old Raurangi Mark Marino ahead of his sentencing today.

Last month he admitted the charges of burglary and sexual violation by rape, as well as a third charge of aggravated wounding that was amended to causing grievous bodily harm.

He will be sentenced in Rotorua District Court today.

This is a photo of him from his Facebook page, What Up Naaw….is prison.

UPDATE: He has now been sentenced to 10 years in the pokie.

Rena Captain pleads guilty

The Captain of the MV Rena has pleaded guilty to all charges he faced:

The captain of the cargo ship which grounded on a reef off Tauranga last year has pleaded guilty to all charges against him.

The Rena hit the Astrolabe Reef in October last year causing an environmental disaster – spilling oil and containers into the water and killing masses of sea animals. The stricken ship broke in two early this year.

The captain, whose name remains suppressed, was due back in court for sentencing on May 25.

The  Rena’s navigator, whose name also remains suppressed, pleaded guilty to Maritime Transport Act charges but was yet to enter a plea on a second group of charges.

The captain and the navigation officer were arrested a week following the Rena grounding, charged under the Maritime Transport Act for “operating a vessel in a manner causing unnecessary danger or risk”.

The charges carry a maximum penalty of up to 12 months in prison or a fine up to $10,000.

So it wasn’t John Key’s fault after all.