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One justice system for the luvvies and sportspeople, and another law for the rest of us

The media are the fourth estate, supposed to hold the powerful to account, but when they transgress they are all about privacy and upset and hide behind name suppression.

An Auckland television boss smashed a subordinate’s glass desk to smithereens with a hammer before unlawfully firing the woman and “taunting” her on social media.

The 49-year-old pleaded guilty to possession of an offensive weapon with intent to menace but was discharged without conviction in the Manukau District Court on Thursday.

Her name suppression was also lifted, however, an appeal filed by the woman’s lawyer prevents the publication of her name in the meantime.

According to a summary of facts, the woman had become enraged with one of her colleagues after she travelled to London with family for a “much-needed break” and ordered she not be contacted.

However, the boss was repeatedly contacted at all hours of the day while on holiday and on her first day back at work at her offices in January 2014 brought a hammer to confront the woman who had been in charge while she was gone.

The defendant was said to have asked, “What are you still doing here?” before taking the mallet and smashing the glass desk the victim was sitting at. Photographs provided to sentencing Judge Ida Malosi showed the office in “a state of disarray”.

The victim wasn’t hurt but was shocked and distressed by the events and shortly after was fired by the company. The Employment Relations Authority later found she had been unjustifiably dismissed and ordered the victim be paid $11,000 for lost wages and the victim’s hurt and humiliation.

Read more »

Bishop Ross Bay: In defence of Christmas


In an attempt to assist inclusive enculturation of migrants, the Auckland Regional Migrant Services thinks it best to avoid the word Christmas, and instead use “happy holidays” and “season’s greetings”. People can enjoy a “festive” lunch on the “seasonal” day. The intention is to avoid excluding non-Christians and those who don’t celebrate Christmas.

All very laudable in a way, though an interesting thing is that non-Christians are some of the biggest celebrators of Christmas and have already reinterpreted it to suit a secular society. Visit any shopping centre and the signs are there.

Christmas is part of us and our culture, however different people understand it.

He’s right.  In parts of Auckland where you are surrounded by temples and mosques, the Christmas decorations are somehow incongruously hanging from homes occupied by people from Iran, Hong Kong and India.   Read more »

Winston comes out swinging


via telegraph.co.uk

Mr Key recently told Paul Henry: “Here’s the silver fern. Front page with one frond coming off like a tear with Jonah Lomu and his years. Amazingly powerful, that’s New Zealand. Where was our flag? Nowhere. I’ll tell you around the world everywhere you go people know the silver fern and that’s the thing they use when we’re doing well and when we’re hurting. That’s our flag not some Union Jack…”

People can decide on the appropriateness of bringing the late Jonah Lomu into the flag debate. Suffice to say, there is a wonderful photo of Jonah and Eric Rush together at the 1998 Commonwealth Games holding a flag many New Zealanders will recognise.

Having Key push for a flag change on the back of a rugby player’s death was very, very cringe-worthy.  Peters continues…  Read more »

Yesterday’s Papers

Richard Harman writes about the state of the main stream media.

The number of copies of New Zealand daily newspapers sold over the past five years has plunged by 23%.

Newspaper circulation figures obtained by POLITIK show the situation is even worse for weekly newspapers like the Sundays and the National Business Review.

Their total copies sold have dropped by 52%.

These drops are obviously a consequence of the internet.

Therefore it is perhaps surprising that the largest drops have been among provincial papers with the Waikato Times, the Manawatu Standard and Bay of Plenty Times all recording drops of over 30%.

Among the weeklies, the Sunday News is down by 49% and the NBR by 38% to just 5402 copies.

And it is a weekly that has shown the smallest drop; the Herald on Sunday is down by only 3.7% while the Otago Daily Times, the Wairarapa Times Age and the Greymouth Star have all recorded relatively small drops around 10%.

The country’s largest paper, the NZ Herald is down 21.8% to 130,937 copies.

It dominates the New Zealand newspaper market with the second largest selling daily paper, The Dominion Post, selling 63,009 copies.

With thee exceptions of a few independents like the Otago Daily Times (34,112 sales) the country’s papers belong to either APN or Fairfax groups and both have big news websites.

Read more »


A New Zealand home is the most dangerous place to live


Kaitaia-based Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis, who made eliminating sexual and domestic violence one of his priorities when elected in 2014, took part in a White Ribbon march in Hastings yesterday. Men had to stand up and take control of the issue, he said.

“Women have been carrying this burden for way too long. Coming up to Christmas, the best gift we can give our children is to love their mothers,” he said.

In Auckland, White Ribbon marchers walked up Queen St to Myers Park for a rally.

At Tauranga on Tuesday, 25 White Ribbon riders motored into the Papamoa Plaza to cheers from a crowd of about 50 people. Chief victims advisor to the Government Dr Kim McGregor said it was important that men continued to campaign against violence against women. Read more »

Mental Health Break

What is the most dangerous drug in the world?

Is it cannabis? What about heroin? Or cocaine?

How about none of those…let’s see what the science says:

David Nutt is the Edmond J. Safra professor of neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College London. He’s one of the world’s foremost experts on drugs, in terms of their use, their effects on the human brain, and international drug policy. Drug Science – formally the Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs – is a science-led drugs charity and research organization headed by Professor Nutt.

In 2010, a now-infamous paper was published by the group detailing their scientific analysis on the harms of drugs available in the U.K., both legal and illegal. Sixteen parameters of harm were chosen, and were divided in terms of the specific drug’s direct and individual effects on the user. A direct effect of a drug on a person could be death through an overdose, for example; an indirect effect could be damage caused by becoming infected with HIV while using contaminated syringes. Each drug’s effect on others and the wider society were also taken into account.

The list included mortality likelihood, dependence, impairment of mental functioning, loss of tangible socioeconomic things (such as a house or a job), physical injury, and criminal activities. The economic cost to the country, as well as the international damage (in terms of political and societal destabilization, for example) were also considered.

“Ranking twenty different drugs on sixteen different harms – that’s the best method we’ve had,” Professor Nutt told IFLScience. In a more general sense, the detrimental effects of drugs could be divided into two broad categories: harm to others and harm to users.    Read more »

Map of the Day

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Andrew Little reinforces Labour’s penchant for cuddling crims

Andrew Little got the bum’s rush from Australia’s government with his little jaunt to Australia to stick up for Kiwis who abandoned their country.

Now he is reinforcing the electorate’s belief that Labour only cares about criminals and bludgers by going to visit some of them in detention.

Kiwis locked up in a Sydney detention centre are today being visited by Labour leader Andrew Little – in the strongest signal yet of his party’s concern at Australia’s tough new stance.

Mr Little and MP Phil Goff are touring the Villawood Immigration Detention Centre in Sydney to see conditions themselves and speak with New Zealanders who are being kept there.    Read more »