Today’s Trivia

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Welcome to Daily Trivia. There is a game to play here. The photo above relates to one of the items below. The first reader to correctly tell us in the comments what item the photo belongs to, and why, gets bragging rights. Sometimes they are obvious, other times the obvious answer is the decoy. Can you figure it out tonight?

Real wasabi is difficult to grow and even more difficult to properly package. So what you eat at Sushi N More is actually horseradish powder, mustard, and green food colouring. (source)   Read more »

This guy’s thing is to give himself shocks – but it is interesting

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When Shooting and Art meet

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Daily Roundup

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Why can’t we have attack ads like this?

Politics crosses with pro wrestling.

 

 

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Is a facilitation payment you do in secret not a bribe?

Cabinet documents do not shed sufficient light on why McCully spearheaded an initiative which at its kindest interpretation resulted in a sweetheart deal to look after Saudi businessman Hamood Al-Ali Al-Khalaf, whose company had made legal threats to seek $30 million after National reconfirmed its predecessor’s ban on the live sheep exports.

Nor do those documents – which are very carefully constructed – pass the smell test for a Government that has become rather too easy a prey for commercial shakedowns by aggrieved foreign investors.

The story goes that the Al-Khalaf Group employed public-law lobbyist Mai Chen to prosecute its grievance with the National Government by arguing that it had been commercially harmed by a policy about-face. This after rival lobbyist Matthew Hooton – who ultimately blew the whistle on the affair – lost out on the representational contract.

The chain of events so far disclosed suggests that Cabinet ministers were not prepared to run the risk that Al-Khalaf – a powerful figure in Saudi Arabia – could permanently sour New Zealand’s negotiations towards a free-trade deal with the Gulf states unless he was “looked after”. Read more »

New Green Taliban co-penis won’t improve party’s appeal

Both would-be leaders know the Greens have to dispel the notion they are permanent hostages to Labour, through operating on that party’s left flank. Coalition with National remains a very distant prospect, mainly because the two parties would rip each other to shreds, over social policy in particular.

Hopes of reaching some kind of understanding that might allow the Greens to give confidence to a National administration, but nothing else, would have to be a lengthy process in which both parties got closer together step by very small step.

The idea that the Greens should avoid being ghettoised by becoming an environment-only party is simplistic. Judging from the Alliance’s record, the Greens’ social justice agenda could be worth half or more of their votes.

There is no guarantee that the environment vote is as large as many pundits assume, especially now the major parties have moved to look softer on environmental matters to hold on to to their own “green” supporters.

What the Greens have to do is reach out from their inner-city metropolitan strongholds, like Shaw’s Wellington Central, and start making connections in the suburbs, provincial cities and rural towns plus the special case of South Auckland where their vote is pitifully low. The best punt is the suburbs where voter attachment to the two major parties has weakened. Read more »

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The “Decade of Whaleoil” series: Key’s too sexy for his shirt

Decade of Whaleoil

Decade of Whaleoil

June 10 2015 marks the day Whaleoil has been publishing for ten years.   I can’t account for the earlier weeks and months, but there haven’t been any days without content for close to a decade, that’s for sure.  I thought it might be fun to go back through the videos and relive some interesting moments in politics.

A video like this today would be seen as a spiteful hit.  It’s all the more amazing it was done during Key’s teflon halcyon period.
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No place to hide for hackers and Bitcoin transactions

The accused mastermind behind the underground website Silk Road will be sentenced on Friday for orchestrating a scheme that enabled more than $US200 million of anonymous online drug sales using the digital currency bitcoin.

Ross Ulbricht, 31, faces up to life in prison after a federal jury in Manhattan found him guilty in February of charges including conspiracy to commit drug trafficking, money laundering and computer hacking.

Prosecutors are seeking a sentence “substantially above” the 20-year mandatory minimum that US District Judge Katherine Forrest must impose on Ulbricht, who admitted to creating Silk Road but denied wrongdoing.

Another “who? me?” defence we have grown to love from likeable morbidly obese rogues.   Read more »