Phil Goff

Ok so now we know Gerry reads Whaleoil

Everyone knows that I am no fan of the salad-dodging, pie scoffing Gerry Brownlee.

However it has become apparent that he is an avid reader of Whaleoil, using the word “ratbags” (at 3:27) in parliament in answering terrorist enabler Phil Goff.

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Three good reasons from a lefty as to why we should take the fight to ISIS

Paul Buchanan is a lefty…he is an expert on international relations and also on conflicts and military issues.

It is not often I agree with him, we are on opposite sides of the political coin.

However he provides three good reason for New Zealand helping to take the fight to ISIS.

There are three specific reasons why NZ has to join the fight, two practical and one principled.

The practical reasons are simple: First, NZ’s major security allies, the US, UK and Australia, are all involved as are France, Germany and others. After the signing of the Wellington and Washington security agreements, NZ became a first tier security partner of the US, and as is known, it is an integral member of the 5 Eyes signals intelligence network. It therefore cannot renege on its security alliance commitments without a serious loss of credibility and trust from the countries upon which it is most dependent for its own security.

Secondly, most of New Zealand’s primary diplomatic and trading partners, including those in the Middle East, are involved in the anti-IS coalition. Having just secured a UN Security Council temporary seat at a time when the UN has repeatedly issued condemnations of IS, and having campaigned in part on breaking the logjam in the UNSC caused by repeated use of the veto by the 5 permanent members on issues on which they disagree (such as the civil war in Syria), NZ must back up its rhetoric and reinforce its diplomatic and trade relations by committing to the multinational effort to defeat IS. Refusing to do so in the face of requests from these partners jeopardises the non-military relationships with them.

The third reason is a matter of principle and it is surprising that the government has not made more of it as a justification for involvement. After the Rwandan genocide an international doctrine known as the “Responsibility to Protect” (R2P) was agreed by UN convention to prevent future horrors of that sort. It basically states that if a defenceless population is being subject to the depredations of its own government, or if the home government cannot defend the population from the depredations of others, then the international community is compelled to use whatever means, including armed force, to prevent ongoing atrocities from occurring. There can be no doubt that is the situation in parts of Iraq and Syria at the moment. Neither the Assad regime or the Iraqi government can defend minority communities such as Kurds or Yazidis, or even non-compliant Sunnis, from the wrath of IS.

That, more than any other reason, is why NZ must join the fight. As an international good citizen that has signed up to the R2P, NZ is committed in principle to the defense of vulnerable others.

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Little risks skeletons in Labour’s closet

Andrew Little is playing the sanctimonious card rather too hard.

Labour leader Andrew Little says Prime Minister John Key allowed former MP Mike Sabin to chair the Law and Order Select Committee at least once after Mr Key found out he was being investigated, showing a “cavalier attitude” to Parliament.

Mr Key has said the first he knew Mr Sabin was facing personal issues that resulted in his resignation was on December 1. Mr Little said Mr Sabin had chaired the meeting of the Law and Order Select Committee on December 3, two days after Mr Key was told.

“That was a severe conflict of interest. It shows a cavalier attitude by the Government towards Parliamentary oversight of the Police. We need to know that the institutions of Parliament, select committees and the way they operate are done in a way that maintains public confidence in them. You can’t have a committee of Parliament that provides oversight for the Police being chaired by someone under Police investigation.”

Mr Little said he believed Mr Key knew more than he was admitting to. Police Minister Michael Woodhouse has repeatedly refused to say whether he or his predecessor, Anne Tolley, were briefed under the ‘no surprises’ policy. On Waitangi Day, Police Commissioner Mike Bush also refused to confirm whether he had advised ministers, but said police “have not dropped the ball.”

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Andrew Little almost calls PM a liar over Sabin, but actually lacks the stones to do it

Andrew Little has been on Radio Live this morning all but calling Prime Minister John Key a liar.

He says he knows stuff…and as a result the PM is lying. But he lacked the courage to actually say it, even when pressed by Mark Sainsbury.

It seems he is going to use the media to continue the focus on what John Key knew when.

The reason they are hammering this in the media is come next week they will be unable to ask any questions on this in parliament….for a number of reasons, but the main one being it is in reality a party matter and not a ministerial matter.

But since this is a party matter and Andrew Little is focussing what someone knew when, then perhaps he might like to answer some questions about what he knew when as well.

Let’s start with the Darren Hughes affair that Phil Goff keep very quiet for three weeks until Jonathan Marshall few down from Auckland and turned the beltway inside out by doing what no gallery journalist had the courage to do.

Mr Little was the president of Labour at that time.   Read more »

Who is Andrew Little? Can Andrew Little Fundraise

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The Labour Party Leadership election proved to be very cheap for the Union backers of Andrew Little.

They didn’t even give him enough to break the donation limit of $500 before it needed to be declared.

Donations received in Labour’s leadership contest, October/ November 2014:

Andrew Little: total of $5000-$6000. None of more than $500.

David Parker: total of $23,000. Donations of $10,000 and $5000 from Rodger Finlay and Selwyn Pellett.

Grant Robertson: total of $18,000. $5000 from an uncle, $1000 from party member Tim Scott and $1900 in printing costs from PrintShop.

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Who is Andrew Little? How did Little go at Ratana?

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Who me? No it’s Andrew Little not Stuart Little

If you look at media reports Andrew Little didn’t do so well at Ratana.

And those media reports are subtle but brutal showing that the as yet un-filled PR position in his team is going to have a hard job getting two positive stories about a dopey looking, dour, grumpy leader into the media.

The photo the Herald used on Saturday was dreadful.

The comments by Claire Trevett worse.

Andrew Little has survived his first address to Maori at Ratana but was well and truly upstaged by NZ First leader Winston Peters when it came to wooing the nannies.

Beforehand, Mr Little admitted to having butterflies in his stomach given the historic relationship between Labour and the Church followers.

He was also the third Labour leader in as many years and the Church speakers had issued a warning that Labour had to up its game after the faith Maori placed in it in last year’s election.

It may have helped that none of his predecessors – David Cunliffe, David Shearer and Phil Goff – attended this year. But the pressure went up when he discovered he’d also have to give his address in front of National MPs.

Usually the Government parties and Opposition are welcomed on to Ratana separately, but this year delays prompted the organisers to opt for a joint powhiri.

Mr Little managed to get through his speech without looking at his notes. He even managed to get in a few jokes, saying of the prophet Ratana that he was “80 years ahead of Gareth Morgan. And he didn’t have a book to sell”.

However, he didn’t get many laughs, possibly because Dr Morgan was on the paepae alongside the Ratana elders, having been welcomed on yesterday.

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Who is Andrew Little? How long does Little have to increase Labour’s polls?

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Labour have gone through four leaders in the past seven years, and are now on to their fifth.

This suggests that Andrew Little needs to be watching his back, or keeping it against the wall if Grant Robertson is around.

Robertson engineered the dumping of David Shearer with some beautiful low bastardry that impressed the VRWC.

This was all without Robbo copping the flack for doing the back stabbing. Shearer’s mid 30s poll ratings a year out from the election gave Robbo the chance to move his forces to stare down Shearer and force a leadership election.     Read more »

Len Brown recruits… everyone who doesn’t like John Key

Lobbyists and opposition political parties are welcoming the idea of light rail through some of Auckland’s main arterial routes.

Auckland Transport says it’s investigating whether light rail on Queen St, Symonds St, Sandringham Rd, Dominion Rd, Mt Eden Rd and Manukau Rd is a good alternative to buses.

Most of those routes had trams running on them before they were removed in the 1950s.

Auckland Transport chairman Lester Levy says light rail could move more than three times the number of people per hour than buses, and at higher speeds, and would complement other projects like the City Rail Link rather than replace it.

He says a public private partnership could be a good way to fund it. Read more »

Who is Andrew Little? Ctd – Can Andrew Little win the Media Battle?

This is what Andrew Little looks like

Labour and the liberal elite have great hopes for Andrew Little.

They seem to think that he will have a broader appeal to middle New Zealand than Phil Goff, David Shearer or David Cunliffe ever did.

The problem with this the camera is unkind to Andrew Little.

Brian Edwards, the left’s master media trainer, called Little “Grim Faced”.

The word is that Edwards reckons that the dour, grim faced little is not going to be able to be media trained.    Read more »

Last poll of year is a bit boring but Audrey Young manages some weapons grade spin on behalf of Labour

The Herald’s last poll of the year is real margin of error stuff.

Labour is up a bit, so is National, NZ First and Greens down a bit…otherwise it is a bit meh.

It didn’t stop Audrey Young spinning this as a massive lift in labour’s fortunes despite them still being under 30%.

Labour’s popularity has jumped three percentage points in the first political poll since Andrew Little took over the leadership and the first major poll since the September 20 election.

But National’s support has also risen, while support for the Greens and New Zealand First has declined.

Labour is on 28.9 per cent, a rise of three points from 25.9 per cent in the Herald-DigiPoll survey conducted in the last week of the election campaign.

Its party vote in the election of 25.13 per cent was close to the poll result, so it can safely be said the party has had a lift.

Mr Little was elected on November 18 after the resignation of David Cunliffe.

National’s support rose 2.2 points, from 48.2 to 50.4 per cent in the poll, conducted in the second and third weeks of December.

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