Photo Of The Day

Photo by Galerie Bilderwelt/Getty Images. A photo titled 'Me As Al Jolson', from an album belonging to Hitler's companion Eva Braun (1912 - 1945), depicting her in blackface as American actor Al Jolson in 'The Jazz Singer', Munich, Germany, 1937. Braun, enjoyed private parties with friends and liked to watch American films such as 'Gone with the Wind'.

Photo by Galerie Bilderwelt/Getty Images.
A photo titled ‘Me As Al Jolson’, from an album belonging to Hitler’s companion Eva Braun (1912 – 1945), depicting her in blackface as American actor Al Jolson in ‘The Jazz Singer’, Munich, Germany, 1937. Braun, enjoyed private parties with friends and liked to watch American films such as ‘Gone with the Wind’.

Eva Braun

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BREAKING: John Banks’ conviction quashed

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Court of Appeal set aside his conviction and ordered a retrial.

This is what the original judge wrote:

Judge found Crown witnesses Kim Dotcom, Mona Dotcom & former employee were “clear, consistent and credible” in their evidence

Except they lied.

I doubt Dotcom will be too worried about a perjury charge being added, but Mona might be in trouble.  As far as I know Tempero left before the other visitors turned up, so he will be in the clear.

 

Request for the Ground Crew – Andrew “Who?” Little

This is what Andrew Little looks like

This is what Andrew Little looks like

Andrew ‚ÄúWho?‚ÄĚ Little has made a terrible start to his tenure as Labour Party leader.

He seems hell bent on promoting New Zealand’s favourite political blog, rather than articulating a vision for New Zealand.

Maybe he is as dead set useless as David Cunliffe who became leader then didn‚Äôt have anything ready to run with because he was a lazy bastard during his previous 14 years in power? ¬†¬† Read more »

Cartoon of the Day

Credit:  Roger Price

Credit: Roger Price

Braunias has a new book, and I’m in it, but the cheap bastard never sent me one

Steve Braunias is a good bastard, for a pinko scumbag I really like the guy.

I’ve probably ruined his lefty credentials now, but hey…who cares.

The other night he launched his book called Madmen: Inside the weirdest election campaign ever.

I had to laugh at the name of his publisher, Steve obviously got his inspiration for the name from my good friend Brian Edwards.

God knows where you can buy the book, but if you track it down enjoy the read…the cheap bastard didn’t even send me one despite the fact I’m in it!

I emailed Braunias too…which he loosely outlined in a blog post.Madmen

Following last night’s wildly successful book launch at the Auckland Central Library for Madmen: Inside the Weirdest Election Campaign Ever – 100 people in attendance, including Cactus Kate, Guyon Espiner, a homeless man in a top hat, Ant Timpson, Shayne Carter, two elderly people in advanced stages of dementia, Deborah Hill-Cone, Karl Puschmann, a man who¬†displayed a dozen pieces of paper which he had thrown coffee onto, waited til the stains dried, and presented them as art, Gary Steel, Shayne Currie, Toby Manhire, Miriamo Kamo and her adorable three-year-old daughter, etc¬† – I came home to find an email from Whale Oil.

Actually, just to correct Steve and look for Nicky Hager, Cactus Kate¬†went along. ¬†Braunias confronted her at the entrance¬†and said he didn’t invite her to which she replied “we often get what we don’t ask for” and proceed to sashay in the door to find the bar. ¬†Nicky was nowhere in sight.

That is when all hell broke loose. ¬†¬† Read more »

Auckland Council trickery

‚ÄčIts fairly obvious that Auckland Council is screwing the scrum on the housing accord.

Earlier this week the first annual report card was released with a miserable 8 houses delivered so far.

That’s not unexpected because property developments take years to yield the fruit of their labour.

But the question is whether Auckland Council really wants the Housing Accord to be successful? Does it want greenfield expansion?

The answer is emphatically no. And I make conjecture that they are really only playing lip service to the National government whilst behind closed doors they are doing everything to keep the compact city model on track.

Back a few years ago Auckland Council launched its Auckland Plan with waffly aspirations of a compact city that is built on a 70/40 ration (70% intensified). The critics slammed it with evidence that it was totally impossible to achieve. Not willing to concede defeat the Council planners worked on. But the introduction of the Housing Accord threw a spanner into the works. The National Government also believed that the compact city aspirations were horse manure and it quickly prepared law to make Auckland Council consent 39,000 sections and houses over a 3 year period. The first step is to tranche the land and Council has worked on this but it’s highly unlikely that most of the tranched land turned into housing because the developers imply cannot get Council to install the connecting sewer and storm water infrastructure required.

So how does this lead to the conclusion that Auckland Council is trying to screw the scrum?

Easy. ¬†¬† Read more »

Hosking’s good hard sledge of Len Brown

Mike Hosking delivered one long hard sledge against the little ratbag masquerading as Auckland’s mayor.

In a way I have no one to blame but myself.

I, much to my surprise, have found myself increasingly agitated about the running of this great city. Increasingly I feel it is being run by idiots. Idiots and financial illiterates.

I have had little, if any, interest in local body politics before. I didn’t vote last time. I don’t think I voted the time before. In fact if I were putting it all on the record it’s entirely possible I have never voted.

So you have every right to bag me now for complaining.

Actually I am not complaining, more raising the alarm. More asking the question: Am I the only one who thinks things around Auckland Council are getting hopelessly out of control? By way of some defence, I didn’t vote in my local area because there was only one person standing.

And when it came to Mayor there was the incumbent and the New York restaurateur. Who seemed like a decent bloke but had no profile, and as much as I might have liked to vote for someone other than Len, I would never vote against someone. Voting against someone is a recipe for trouble. You might not like what’s in office, but that doesn’t mean just anything else is the answer.

People who don’t vote, then complain usually give me the shits…but I’ll spare Mike some latitude.

Anyway, having got my excuses out of the way, I am bordering on ropable over what’s unfolding around the council table. First of all shall we deal with the broken promises?

Len Brown promised a rate rise of no more than 2.5 per cent yet voted for a 3.5 per cent increase.

Len Brown promised rate rises within the range of inflation.

The council promised a maximum rates cap of 10 per cent. They then rejected that.

Hundreds of thousands of households will be getting bills with increases of in excess of 10 per cent, some as high as 40 per cent. How in God’s name is this allowed to happen?

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Well, well, well what do we have here…a little bit of truth sneaking past the keeper?

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“Mr Blomfield was untruthful” – Liquidator

So it seems one of my stories from 2012 has finally made it to the authorities. Matt Nippert reports:

Complaints about controversial businessman and b√™te noire of blogger Cameron Slater will be referred to the Police and the registrar of companies by a liquidator probing one of his collapsed companies. Matthew Blomfield was the sole director of property company Plan Z Investment, which collapsed on December 14, 2012 when it was unable to pay a $100,000 statutory demand. Liquidator David Petterson, of Forensic Accounting Services, in an unusually long report on Plan Z stretching to nine pages, outlined what he described as a “torturous process” to unpick the affairs of the company and concluded: “I am now of the opinion that the information I received at the start of this liquidation, provided to me by Mr Blomfield was untruthful.”

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Listen you Taliban scum, don’t mess with decent people

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I wish I could give these women a hug.   And fresh ammo.

A grieving Afghan mother took bloody revenge on the Taliban militants who gunned down her son, killing 25 and injuring five of them during a seven hour gun battle.

Reza Gul watched helplessly as her son died while he manned a village checkpoint with his small team of police officers in the lawless Farah province.

But flanked by her daughter and daughter-in-law, she led a counter strike on his attackers killing 25 militants and wounding another five during a ferocious seven hour gun battle.

Seven hours. ¬†And she made it 25 zip. ¬† Read more »

Oh well done Len. Well done. 2.5%, then 3.5%, and now up to 40% and more

Auckland Council are determined to get everyone paying exactly what the formula says they should pay, no matter how much this will increase rates.  Check this out.

The cap which has protected some Auckland homeowners from up to 40 per cent rates rises has been voted down…

Auckland Council’s Governing Body today argued its way through its 10-year budget, known as the Long-term Plan 2015-25.

Among a series of major decisions it has removed the rates cap, refused a referendum on its controversial plans to pay for expensive transport projects and made changes to how it charges property developers.

The vote to scrap the rates cap was tight – 11 votes to 10.

Since the eight old Auckland councils amalgamated into the super city, the new council has been trying to align the rates it charges.

It has meant some homeowners have had decreases in their rates, but others have faced steep increases.

In an effort to give some relief to the pain of those homeowners in line for big increases, the council operated a policy called “rates transition” – capping the extent of rates rises each year to a maximum of 10 per cent.

But today the cap went  Рall ratepayers who own similar value properties will pay the same rates no matter where in Auckland they live. And no matter how big the rates rise.

It has been reported that some will now face a massive household rates increases of 40 per cent or more next year.

This is after Len promised 2.5% rises.

And then he said, sorry, but, erm… 3.5%, ok?

And now this. ¬† ¬† Read more »