Jonathan Coleman

Troughers gathering in Wellington, Hague excited

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Well that didn’t take long.

A bunch of tax-payer funded troughers are rolling into Wellington and to Parliament tomorrow for the so-called 10 year ‘anniversary’ of the Smokefree laws.

No doubt Shane Kawenata Bradbrook will be there waving the flag, alongside Smokefree Coalition’s Prudence Stone, who may be looking for some action.

There’s just slight problem with this. Helen Clark introduced the Smokefree Environments Act in 1990, and by my reckoning that’s more than 10 years ago.     Read more »

Kevin Hague plays #dirtypolitics and becomes a stalker

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Green Taliban MP Kevin Hague just can’t help himself but dive head-first into the pit of #dirtypolitics like some pimp-whore.

Using stolen emails, Kevin Hague has taken it upon himself to be a so-called public health champion in Parliament on behalf of the“voice of the public” Boyd Swinburn aka Boyd Swingeburn.

In the process he’s become an obsessive stalker.   Read more »

MP and ex-GP Jonathan Coleman shows no love for medical marijuana

The new Health Minister may be confessing to a few “puffs” of cannabis in his youth, but don’t expect him to go soft on drugs.

Jonathan Coleman has moved quickly to make changes since becoming the first trained doctor in the role in more than 70 years.

He has dumped the controversial cost-cutting agency Health Benefits Ltd (HBL), which his predecessor Tony Ryall vigorously defended in the face of revolt among district health boards.

And he is also pushing a more aggressive shift of health services, and potentially funding, from hospitals and into medical centres.

But in other ways, Coleman will be toeing the political line. Anyone hoping that the former GP might take a more health-focused approach to drug use will be disappointed.

Coleman said he had smoked cannabis (although never “a whole spliff”) once or twice in his 20s.

As a GP, he had regularly treated drug addicts, including prescribing methadone, particularly while working in London.

“[But] my clinical experience has led me to the view that decriminalisation isn’t going to work and the policy settings at the moment are the right ones . . . We need less marijuana in society, not more,” he said.

Another hypocrite that has never inhaled that won’t, on principle, consider the medical use of marijuana.  As an ex-GP, he very well knows the big drug companies are the bread and butter of the medical system, and the last thing he needs is non-patentable yet highly effective treatments based on the humble marijuana plant.

The way to keep it at bay, is to keep harping on about the criminal elements surrounding the “drug”.   Read more »

Trougher of the Year Tries to Protect Patch

2013 TROUGHER OF THE YEAR Boyd Swinburn aka Boyd Swingeburn has emerged from the trough and is now complaining to all and sundry that scientists (i.e. him) are under attack.

He’s saying that ‘scientists that represent the voice of the public in policy making are being shouted down by large commercial interests and their views suppressed by attack campaigns”.

Nice to see that Boyd Swingeburn thinks he’s the “voice of the public”.

Maybe it’s the rarified air he’s sucked into his lungs at Lake Como, Italy that instilled in him the view that he’s the voice of the people.

He then bangs on about “a blanket of suppression is insidiously descending on the voices for public health”.

Maybe those voices are actually calling for accountability of the millions and millions of taxpayer dollars being hoovered up sending Boyd Swingeburn and his troughing mates on flash overseas holidays junkets conferences.

Now as the “voice of the people” Boyd Swingeburn is attacking the Government, saying Tony Ryall dismissed a letter from so-called public health experts upset that there’s an industry representative – former MP and head of the Food & Grocery Council Katherine Rich, on the Health Promotion Agency (HPA).    Read more »

Josh Forman and his attempt to leak information from his government job

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Josh Forman

Josh Forman thought yesterday that he would try and nail the PM by releasing an email between me and him.

Little did he know that I had smelled a rat some days ago and set him up.

However over the course of the past month he has been sending me information that he came by in his role working in the state sector, specifically information designed to undermine CERA and the EQC, but especially Gerry Brownlee.

He states in his email suggesting a blog post and potential set of OIA questions the following from a temporary email account.

The Comedian <[email protected]>
To: camslater

Mon, Nov 10, 2014 at 7:20 PM

RE: OIA suggestion + Article suggestion

OIA suggestion + Article suggestion

When it comes to corruption, New Zealand does pretty damn well.

Where there are large amounts of taxpayers money available in a bureaucratic environment there is bound to be the occasional hiccup, but you would expect that processes would be in place to detect and deal with such instances.

This is a fair and reasonable expectation when you are dealing with a large, long established organisation such as ACC or Work and Income – while they have had their issues with largesse in the past, there has not been, to date at least the wholesale embezzlement of state funds.

What then are the safeguards that are in place when a small crown entity is forced to rapidly and massively up scale its operations, make up policy on the fly, deal with a complex disaster situation, while juggling the responsibility of dealing with billions of dollars in levy payers funds?

I’m talking about the Earthquake Commission and its primary recovery agent. Fletcher EQR.

What assurance does the public have that the organisation formerly employing 20 staff, which now has in excess of 1000 employees which has paid out almost $8 billion dollars in either cash settlements or repair works for earthquake damage in Canterbury alone, has put in place the safeguards necessary to ensure that the money is spent appropriately?

In short, there are no guarantees when it comes to EQC and EQR.

Today we submitted an OIA Request to EQC requesting specific information on it’s operations and seeking answers to the questions outlined above.

[REDACTED: 14 potential OIA requests, some defamatory in nature]

If intending to publish this I would appreciate if you could refer to me as your source close to the rebuild based in Canterbury and leave it at that. this disclosure and OIA suggestion puts me at significant personal risk.Do not identify me.

The Comedian

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What is happening with CRISP?

Josh Forman at Slightly Left of Centre has another ripper of a yarn, and what I am enjoying seeing is his willingness to call minister’s offices, and SOE CEOs for comment.

He also looks like he is working some very good sources. He should be encouraged because he is actually running stories without any vitriol and just looking at facts.

His latest post looks at the rumours floating around about CRISP.

Slightly Left of Centre can reveal this afternoon, again as a result of another National caucus leak, that the Health Minister Jonathan Coleman is set to cut yet another Tony Ryall initiative.

CRISP, which stands Central Region Information Systems Plan is an initiative of Central Technical Advisory Services Ltd (TAS), which according to its website “is a joint venture company, established in 2001 and owned by the six Central Region District Health Boards (DHBs) to provide support and services, undertaking:regional planning; implementing regional programmes of work; hosting regional groups and forums; and ensuring the compliance of contracted health service providers.”

The CRISP initiative has the following stated goal:

One Portal,
One Password,
One Patient Record
For every Clinician
At Every Facility
Across the Central Region

This initiative, in the words of those who have been employed to set it up, was meant to provide a shared database of all information relevant to every Clinician at every facility across the entire situation.    Read more »

This looks interesting, new lefty blogger might have one by the tail [UPDATED]

Slightly Left of Centre has an interesting tale on his blog:

Slightly Left of Centre can reveal this afternoon that Former Health Minister Tony Ryall, who was thought by many to be a highly respected Minister, was forced to quit by Finance Minister Bill English after it became clear that the much vaunted crown owned entity, Health Benefits Limited (HBL), had become a financial disaster.

Sources have told us that HBL, set up in 2010, is on the brink of financial collapse and that an announcement is due from Mr English in the next day or two. Sources also tell us that this was the real reason behind the surprisingly early end of Mr Ryalls political career.

Media Spokesman for HBL, Steve Fisher would neither confirm nor deny that HBL when quizzed by Slightly Left of Centre.

We wait with baited breath for an announcement from Finance Minister English on what was meant to help “the health sector save millions by combining the purchasing power of DHBs and using this to negotiate single contracts with suppliers.”

Read more »

Jonathan Coleman happy with our Ebola preparedness as the world counts its 10,000th patient

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a meeting of 20 government agencies to discuss New Zealand’s response to the threat of Ebola, reflected a “high level of preparedness” within the Government.

The Inter-Agency Pandemic Group includes police and the ministries of Defence, Civil Defence Emergency Management, Foreign Affairs and Trade and Primary Industries.

The group met in Wellington today – a yearly meeting, but with attention squarely focused on Ebola, Coleman said.

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has already killed over 4500 people, mostly in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone, since it emerged 10 months ago. Experts have said the world could face 10,000 new cases a week in two months if authorities don’t take stronger steps to fight the deadly virus.

Cases have since been confirmed in the United States and parts of Europe.

Coleman said the risk of the infectious disease reaching New Zealand was remote, but New Zealand had to be prepared for the worst.

Actually, at this stage  I think the risk of Ebola reaching New Zealand is a certainty,  The disease is still spreading in an expansionary fashion.   Read more »

List MP Kevin Hague plays #dirtypolitics

You’ll know I’m no fan of List MPs, and while all of the Green Taliban fall into that camp, there’s a few that stand out as particularly sanctimonious scumbags.

Take yesterday’s Question #10 by Kevin Hague asking about conflicts of interest and whether the Food and Grocery Council’s CEO Katherine Rich should be a member of the Health Promotion Agency.

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman batted him away saying ‘Katherine Rich is a person of the very highest integrity and that her conduct as a member of the HPA has been excellent’.

Looks like the Green Taliban are going to try and run attacks against the Nats using stolen emails and play more #dirtypolitcs. Good.

Next time Kevin Hague wants to have a crack and call for investigation, maybe the Government should ask what conflicts Kevin Hague has.

You see Kevin Hague has been a frequent target for health lobbyists, particularly those Fizz2030 activists troughers from Otago University. They even went as far as bestowing on him the title ’Hon’.

Maybe Government MPs could ask Hague about who is advising the Greens on their ‘obesity reduction’ policy. The one where he wants controls on price, availability and marketing on the likes of fizzy drinks, chocolate and even breakfast cereals.   Read more »

Public Health Activists Playing #Dirtypolitics [UPDATED]

Well, well, well, looks like all the crying from academic activists in the field of public health is just a big fat smokescreen.

They just don’t like anyone taking a look at what they’re really up to.

WOBH has highlighted over the years various troughers gouging the public just so they can travel the world to fancy conferences. It started with tobacco troughers, but has quickly spread to troughers looking at alcohol restrictions and obesity/fat taxes.

Now we see the real agenda of the public health activists. Global taxes on products they don’t like.

The Taxpayers Protection Alliance has an alarming blog UN Health Conference Bans Media Day After Kicking out Public and Then Passes Massive Global Tobacco Tax in Secret.

After booting the public from its meetings on Monday, the World Health Organization’s tobacco control convention ramped up its assault on transparency on Tuesday when the press was also banned from the Moscow conference.

Shortly after the media was removed from the convention, the United Nations’ health agency secretly passed the world’s first ever global tax – an outrageous scheme requiring nearly 180 countries to apply a minimum tax on tobacco products.

All indications were that the global tobacco tax would not pass until Thursday or Friday, if at all. Without the public and the media there to watch, delegates ratified the tax almost immediately.

When I, and a handful of other accredited journalists, showed up for a Tuesday morning press briefing, we were told that the briefing was cancelled and the press was no longer allowed to attend any convention events at all.

The rest of the convention, which cost world taxpayers nearly $20 million, will now take place in secret, behind closed doors. It’s a chilling and disturbing attack on the freedom of the press – especially given the impact decisions made at the convention will have on people throughout the world.

Read more »