David Farrar

Why would a union donate to a party who wants to see their members unemployed?

David Farrar blogs about the EPMU donating to the Green party and how members are upset by it.

The Greymouth evening Star reports that West Coast miners who are EPMU members are furious at the EPMU for donating $15,000 to the Greens, when they want the mining industry in NZ to die out. Over a dozen miners have complained.

You can imagine how galling it would be to have your union donate a portion of your salary to a party that wants to close down the industry you work in, and effectively put you out of a job.

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Is Robertson making a move?

It looks like Grant Robertson is planning on making a move against David Cunliffe.

David Farrar reports that his Labour sources are saying that Robertson has the numbers in caucus and has done for some time.

My sources are telling me that though Robertson has the numbers he is scared of taking over in case h loses and ruins his chances forever.

One thing for sure though is Grant Robertson is back on a diet…losing weight too. Sources tell me that he has been on a diet for s short time.

Last night he appeared on 3News:

robbo Read more »

What dead rats will Labour have to swallow?

The Labour election year Congress was every bit what was expected.

They preached to the choir, and didn’t get around to addressing the fundamentally important question of how they are going to appeal to middle New Zealand. They even managed to get their donors on stage proudly showing that they sell access, parliamentary seats and their soul to donors.

What they didn’t get around to doing was work out what dead rats they would have to swallow before they could become government.

Before National won in 2008 they had to swallow a whole lot of dead rats, ideologically appalling policies Clark had put in place but the public liked. Working for Families and Interest Free Student Loans, two of the biggest dead rats.

This conference Labour didn’t actually get around to swallowing any dead rats.

They managed to keep their factions suppressed, so the Man Ban didn’t come up, and nor did any dumb gay issues like gay adoption that are largely irrelevant to middle New Zealand and affect barely 100 people nationwide.

What they did not do was actually swallow any dead rats.

The most obvious dead rat to swallow was teacher quality, where Labour’s donors manage to protect all teachers no matter how useless they are. Their policy on class sizes is a classic example of policy being driven by donors, not by research.    Read more »

The Predictable Failure of David Cunliffe, Ctd

Travel, lifestyle and arts blogger David Farrar has published an interesting graph of Labour’s prospects for winning the 2014 election.

Since the voting public have worked out that David Cunliffe has tits for hands, the graph has plunged downwards. 

This was very predictable.   Read more »

Andrea Vance on conspiracy theories

Andrea Vance has a helpful explanation about the various conspiracy theories out there.

The cybersphere has been full of conspiracy theories since Internet Mana announced a “strategic alliance” last month. But do the theories stack up?

1. There is fear, desperation and total panic in the eyes of the Right because finally a political party on the Left has financial clout.

Internet party founder Kim Dotcom stumped up a $3m war chest to fight the election campaign. Pow! The US, Barack Obama, Hollywood and John Key didn’t see that coming.

Sure, $3m is a lot of campaign coin. But National spent $2.3 million in 2011, and looking at donations registered this year Key won’t be rummaging down the back of the sofa.

The last round of polling put National above 50 per cent. Both Mana and the Internet Party are on about half a per cent each. Polling day is three months away. So, no, that’s not fear in campaign supremo Steven Joyce’s eyes. They’re just red from all the time he spends trolling on Twitter.

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Greens fighting battles past, this time it is abortion


For some reason the Greens have decided that abortion should be a defining issue of this campaign.

They have decided to have as a policy a change to abortion law to streamline the killing of children faster.

The Greens have ratified a policy on abortion, which would get rid of a process a certified consultant says is “perfectly workable”.

Abortion is a crime under the Crimes Act, and is legal only if two consultants agree that the pregnancy would seriously harm the woman’s physical or mental health, or that there is a substantial risk the child would be born seriously disabled.

The Greens want abortion removed from the crime statutes, saying it would reduce stigma and judgment surrounding the procedure. This would mean a woman seeking one would not need external approval.

“The Green Party trusts women to make decisions that are best for them and their whanau/family,” women’s spokeswoman Jan Logie said.

That’s nice…they make a decision that another kid isn’t wanted, so reef it out…never to be part of a family so someone can decide what is best for them.   Read more »

About that donation

Yesterday The Internet party declared a donation of $250,000 from Kim Dotcom.

This is good.

However it does raise some significant issues.

I happen to know that Kim Dotcom has spent considerably more than that on the Internet party, let me explain.

Let’s start with the Internet Party boss, Vikram Kumar. He has stated publicly to the Herald on Sunday that he is on a 6 figure salary. Now I happen to know that it exceeds $200,000 but probably not more than $250,000 which is what his salary was as CEO of MEGA. He started in January.

The seven salaries are a bigger expense. Kumar, 51, acknowledges he is on a “fair” six-figure salary (pundits guess at $200,000-plus) and says that is a pay cut from his previous job as boss of Dotcom’s Mega cloud-sharing web start-up. But, he is at pains to add: “We’re not doing it for the money, I can tell you that.”

Then there are the other staff. There is John Mitchell, Gerard Hehir, Andy Pickering, Callum Valentine, Anna Sutherland and Graeme Edgeler. All of their salaries need to be paid too. All of them will be earning over $100,000.

So just on salaries alone there is a commitment for the election of at least $850,000 which makes a lie of this statement from John Mitchell.

“The total figure for Internet Party expenses in the pre-regulated period is expected to be substantially less than $1m,” he says. The party will then spend another $1m during the election campaign.

But even if it was true where are the declarations of the monies before the regulated period and the donations to support the spending of another $1M during the campaign.

On top of that is the Internet Party BBQ day at the Dotcom mansion. Sources tell me that cost over $50,000 to stage  including the bouncy castle, stage hire and all the acts, not to mention the legions of staff to deal with the crowds, such as they were. Did the Internet party pay those bills? If they did then that comes out of the donations to the party as well.

As you can see we are mounting up the expenses with only $250,000 declared.  Read more »

More trouble in Winston’s office – are staff fleeing a sinking ship?


Looks like arts, lifestyle, and travel blogger David Farrar is finally getting one back on Winston Peters with the Taxpayers’ Union now poaching Winston’s staff.

The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union has appointed former New Zealand First staffer Ben Craven to be the Union’s Campaigns Coordinator.

Craven was a parliamentary researcher reporting to Winston Peters for two years and has also worked in the public sector as an advisor.     Read more »

John Campbell can now safely be called Fonzie

Last night on Campbell Live they jumped the shark.

Jumping the shark is an idiom created by Jon Hein that was used to describe the moment in the evolution of a television show when it begins a decline in quality, which is usually a particular scene, episode, or aspect of a show in which the writers use some type of “gimmick” in an attempt to keep viewers’ interest. The phrase is based on a scene from a fifth-season episode of the sit-com Happy Days when the character Fonzie jumps over a shark while on water-skis.

David Farrar explains the idiotic presumptions of the show.

You have to all go and watch Campbell Live tonight and try and stop laughing.

It’s classic conspiracy theory stuff. It sort of goes like this:

  • Key appoints Mateparae Governor-General to create vacancy at  – March 2011
  • Director of US National Intelligence, Jim Clapper, visits one week later and meets 
  • McCully visits Hillary Clinton May 2011
  • PM has breakfast with Ian Fletcher in June 2011
  • Key visits Obama July 2011 and shock horror asks Fletcher to apply for GCSB job the SAME MONTH!
  • Oct 2011 – Key, Fletcher, SIS Head, MFAT Head, NZDF  and DPMC Head have a meal at British High Commissioner’s place!
  • 12 Dec 2011 – Key meets GCSB (one of 10 meetings that year) and meets Ian Fletcher who is in NZ
  • 16 Dec 2011 – surveillance of Dotcom begins
  • Obama invites Key to White House – May 2014 – THE PAYOFF!   Read more »

A bloody good point

David Farrar raises a bloody good point.


Of course they have their former General Secretary sitting in caucus as well, plus several members of Cunliffe’s war room and staff are ex-officio EPMU members…including Paul Tolich.

Let’s look at their declared cash donations to Labour.  Read more »