Love needs laughs


Today’s Trivia


Welcome to Daily Trivia.

Louis Pasteur and his lab assistants kept a loaded gun in case one of them was infected with rabies. (Source) Read more »

Gullible isn’t actually a word in the dictionary

I want some of that energy Kevin is on

Daily Roundup

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Is this man mad, or brilliant? Watch, then discuss

Phil Goff says the Auckland mayoralty wouldn’t be “the worst job”

Oh, great.  Phil has had worse jobs.  That makes him totally electable.

Goff has been leaning left his whole life. He joined the Labour Party as a 15-year-old, after a nudge by his old mate Mike Moore, whose couch he was sleeping on at the time. (He had been kicked out of home by his “old-school” father; a girl may have been involved, although he says he thinks his father managed to kick all of his four kids out at some stage).

He is not standing as a Labour candidate in the Auckland mayoralty but, like Len Brown before him, as an independent. Oh, that’s just semantics, I say. Everyone knows he’s the Labour guy. Of course, he says that it is not just semantics, even though “everyone knows that I’m a Labour MP and that I have been all my life”.

He is an almost entirely affable fellow, not, he says, easily annoyed. Or he is good at pretending not to be easily annoyed? “No. No. No,” he says, smiling, that easy, practised public smile of his. When he became Leader of the Opposition, he did have media training, from Brian Edwards and Judy Callingham, who may have given him some advice on matters such as not appearing to be easily annoyed. “Umm. No. I don’t think my character has changed much over the entire time in politics.” That sounds plausible; perhaps his office decor reflects his character.

Unsalted, unsweetened porridge it is then.  Every day.  Read more »

Criminals can stand for council in Marlborough (clearly they value experience!)

They say there’s no hiding your past, but that shouldn’t put you off running for council.

With no statutory obligation on candidates to disclose criminal convictions – and no penalties for lying – pretty much anyone can run for office.

Marlborough District Council electoral officer Dean Heiford said there would be no police checks carried out on potential councillors in Marlborough.

A Department of Internal Affairs spokeswoman confirmed council hopefuls did not have to tell anyone about their criminal records.

Three years ago, a Waikato regional councillor hit the headlines after it was revealed he had been convicted of a bank robbery in Australia.

Heiford said electoral officers also did not have to check the accuracy of claims the candidates made in the short profile statements they had to supply.

So unlike most local body politicians that go on the trough and take once they are elected, in Marlborough you can be a convicted felon and simply not disclose you are a two-time bankrupt with a conviction for fraud.  Hell no… that would take all the fun out of it.  Read more »

Maori Party won’t work with Labour. Winston won’t work with Labour. Hmmm

It is not unreasonable to connect the sudden politicisation of the king’s public statements with the appointment of Tukoroirangi Morgan as Māori Party President last month.

Mr Morgan is a former New Zealand First MP, a close senior advisor to the king and very involved with the iwi leaders forum – so he has considerable influence.

Tukoroirangi Morgan at a Māori Party AGM last month. Photo: RNZ / Shannon Haunui-Thompson
Māori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell is adamant Mr Morgan did not force the king’s hand, arguing the Kīngitanga has always been a political movement.

Whatever Kiingi Tuheitia’s reasons for speaking off the cuff, he is a man of influence and his comments have broadened Mr Flavell’s already ready smile.

Just days after the speech, Kīngitanga representatives travelled to Wellington to meet with the Māori Party co-leaders.

The Labour Party’s connections with the Rātana movement remains strong with regular meetings, and local MP Adrian Rurawhe being a direct descendant of Church founder Tahupōtiki Wiremu Rātana, means that relationship is unlikely to falter.

However, Mr Flavell argues Labour was rattled by what the King said, and he says it should be.

Helen Clark’s decicion to run one up the Maoris is still paying dividends.  The real problem is that Labour have arrogantly assumed those votes were theirs and there was absolutely no need to put any kind of effort into them.   That’s not working out so well.  Read more »