Rodney Hide

Rodney Hide on the “Predator hiding in plain sight”

Rodney too, is unhappy that our name suppression laws are protecting the guilty

HOS amusing image to promote Rodney's column

HOS amusing image to promote Rodney’s column

The Labour leader has met the sex predator. “If I had known of the suggestion [that the man was a sex predator hiding behind name suppression], no such meeting would have taken place.” I am sure that’s true.

The meeting highlights two key points. First, there’s no shaming without naming. The offender remains brazen and without remorse. He happily and openly met the Leader of the Opposition who had just loudly and boldly spoken out against sexual violence.

Spot on Rodney.  It churns my stomach.   He continues to act like it was all a one-off mistake, a misunderstanding.  The fact we can explain it is but part of a pattern of such behaviour isn’t possible, because… name suppression.

You think he would be too ashamed. But no. Name suppression thwarts justice because the offender has never had to own up. He can carry on like nothing happened. He can have a joke and a laugh with the leader of the Labour Party exactly as if he had never performed an indecent act on a woman in her own home. Oh that his victim could just share a joke, have a laugh, or meet the leader of the Labour Party.

Second, the meeting highlights the danger to which name suppression exposes women.

The sex predator’s prominence is such that Cunliffe was attracted to meet him. Knowing the sex pest’s background and history it’s easy to see why. We are all attracted to and flattered by the attention of “prominent” men.

That’s just fine.  The damage there is just some political egg on his face.   Read more »

Hide: “…the experts know nothing about politics”

Rodney Hide explains how it is that the supposed experts actually know nothing about politics…and uses my good friend Brian Edwards as an example.

The wonderful thing about politics is that no one knows what they are talking about. There are no experts. There are no laws of political motion. Political science is oxymoronic.

Let me illustrate how little we know by picking on our most qualified and experienced political commentator. He has a PhD, has interviewed and known political leaders for five decades, has been an adviser to four prime ministers, has spent a lifetime in all branches of the media and makes a living media training business leaders and other professionals. He has also stood for Parliament and is no sideline Sam. He knows politics, inside and out. His knowledge, history and hands-on experience dwarfs all other political commentators.

I refer, of course, to Dr Brian Edwards. I single him out because of his eminence.

Oh dear this is sounding ominous.

Here’s what he had to say last year when David Cunliffe took over the Labour leadership:

“David Cunliffe has a brilliant mind, is a brilliant speaker and debater and there is no politician to match him on the box. Cunliffe is the game-changer.

“And the proof of the pudding will lie where it has always lain – in the polls. And particularly in the Preferred Prime Minister poll. No party leader permanently registering under 15% in that poll, let alone dipping into single figures, can hope to enjoy the (© Copyright Protected – The National Business Review 76)confidence of the electorate or lead their party to victory. And that has been the situation for every Labour Leader since 2008.

“But all that changed today as well. Under Cunliffe’s leadership, his and Labour’s poll rating will begin to rise, slowly but inexorably.”

Mr Cunliffe has proved a game changer but directly opposite to what Dr Edwards foresaw: Mr Cunliffe has doomed Labour.

Read more »

One of the problems: Our suppression laws

(Unless you have read the first and second posts in this three parter, you won’t have had the stage set for this final article.)

Rodney Hide’s article is mostly about name suppression, and how it doesn’t service justice

I have reluctantly concluded that New Zealand does suffer a rape culture.

It’s not an “all men are rapists” and “I am sorry for being a man” type of thing. Rather, it’s the way men can commit sex crimes and get away with it. The system works to protect the privileged and powerful.

My eyes were opened after my column last week. I had called on National MP Maggie Barry to use Parliamentary privilege to break the suppression order protecting a “prominent” New Zealander.

The police had charged him with “indecent assault” but the sex predator pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of “indecent act with intent to insult or offend”.

“Indecent assault” is a strike offence; it’s a serious charge.

Judge David Saunders discharged the sex attacker without conviction and gave him name suppression. We can’t report who he is. By way of explanation, the judge said the predator had “carried a bit of a cross” since the charges were laid.

You know Rodney, you and I are both itching to kick this sexual assaulting ratbag to touch.  But due to my (personally costly) hard work, the penalties for breaching suppression are no longer a maximum $1000 fine per incident.   It has increased to $100,000 – and that’s not something I can afford to do again to bring about change. Read more »

I have reluctantly concluded that New Zealand does suffer a rape culture – Hide

Rodney Hide

via Bowalley Road

I find it really disappointing that Rodney Hide feels that, on balance, New Zealanders are sufficiently involved in the sexual abuse of women and children that he feels comfortable labeling our whole nation a nation that tacitly allows rape.

This isn’t the reality where I live.  And I feel completely disconnected from the sentiment where people like Rodney and David Cunliffe feel they have to take on some sort of collective guilt on behalf of everyone else. Read more »

Rodney Hide on Harre’s hypocrisy addiction

Rodney Hide launches into Laila Harre at The NBR [paywalled]:

I am worried about Laila Harré: having dropped any pretence of principle she now finds hypocrisy addictive. There’s no other explanation. She should have OD’d by now, but no, she just keeps loading it up.

Her latest dose is to assert property rights in Green Party policy.

That’s right. That’s her response to criticism of her announcing Green Party policy as hers just hours ahead of the Green’s release. Ms Harré was working for the Greens. She then decamped to lead the Internet Party taking Green Party policy with her. No wonder the Greens are little annoyed in their touchy-feely, caring way.

But as she explains it, “Look, I contributed huge intellectual property to the Green Party in the 15 months that I spent working for them.” So what’s theirs is also hers.

That’s a bellyful of hypocrisy. Remember this is the Internet Party. Her party’s founder, funder, paymaster and visionary is fighting to avoid facing copyright infringement charges. Intellectual property doesn’t mean that much to Mr Dotcom.

For his proxy leader to be defending herself by spuriously claiming intellectual property is breathtaking hypocrisy. Intellectual property matters to Ms Harré – but only when she’s claiming it as hers. No one else’s appears to matter.

But having teamed up with Mr Dotcom, Ms Harre now wallows in hypocrisy. She can’t get enough. Every time she opens her mouth she takes another hit.

Hypocrisy is a particular attribute that is endemic in the left-wing of politics.

Mr Dotcom’s opulent lifestyle is everything that Ms Harré has railed against her whole life. She picked coffee for the Sandinistas. That’s what rich, lefty kids did back in the day. It was much more romantic than a mundane job with real New Zealand workers.    Read more »

Face of the day

mystery_person

So who is he?

Rodney Hide is keen for Maggie Barry to reveal his identity but failed to do so himself when he was in parliament. I think it is pretty cheeky of Mr Hide to do that, in fact I think that he is out of line.

Read more »

Rodney Hide on The Cunliffe

Rodney Hide discusses The Cunliffe and his apology culture at the NBR:

David Cunliffe didn’t misspeak in apologising for being a man. Far from it. His apology is what core Labour philosophy demands. Mr Cunliffe should also be apologising for being white, rich and heterosexual.

It’s now deep Labour Party madness that your colour, wealth, sex and sexual orientation dictate your views and your politics. You think you reason and choose but it’s illusory. Your class and group define and rule you.

It gets worse. You are also responsible for all the other members of your group and this collective responsibility travels mysteriously down through the generations. Hence the Waitangi Tribunal.

As a white, wealthy and educated man, Mr Cunliffe has much to be sorry for. He can’t escape his pigeonhole but he can prove his awareness by apologising. That’s all he can do. And he can atone.

He can never appreciate what it’s like to be an oppressed minority. But he can listen. He can sympathise. And he can do what the oppressed through their collective experience dictate without question and without judgement. To question is to reinstate the rich, white, male hegemony.

That’s part of Labour’s ideology: that rich, white men rule the world and cause all the trouble. The cure is simple enough: break up the hegemony. Hence the man-ban and the endless affirmative action.

Perhaps they could start by banning The Cunliffe.

The Labour Party itself illustrates the policy.

Labour’s New Zealand Council must have two Maori, a woman, a unionist, a young person, a Pacific Islander and a Rainbow. It sounds like the start of a long joke but it’s not: that’s the Labour Party’s Constitution. And there’s poor Mr Cunliffe: white, rich, male. And there’s his deputy: white, rich, male.    Read more »

Lindsay Mitchell – The Greatest Risk

Lindsay Mitchell has written a fantastic piece and has asked me to publish it so it gains a wider audience. I am very happy to do so.

As Rodney Hide said in the comments, this should be pinned to every wall in Treasury.


Growing up in 1960s New Zealand, houses were smaller and families bigger. Paradoxically, overcrowding and child poverty weren’t a major issue. Most families had two parents and many could even afford a stay-at-home mum. A very small percentage of families experienced financial hardship associated with an absent father.

What changed?

In 1973, influenced by the Royal Commission on Social Policy’s urgings, the government introduced a statutory benefit for sole parents regardless of the reason for their single parenthood. In the following 20 years unmarried births with no resident father more than quadrupled from around 2,500 to 12,000 – 22% of all births – annually. The relatively generous DPB saw single mums dropping out of the workforce. (The Royal New Zealand Plunket Society partially attributes this development to the eventual non-viability of Karitane hospitals which had provided live-in employment for unmarried mothers.)

These births accumulated in the statistics. By the early 1990s around a quarter of a million (mostly) mothers and children were dependent on the state for their survival. But the benefit still kept them above the poverty threshold.

When the incoming National government of 1990 opened Treasury books, the news was bad. This is where the authors ofChild Poverty in New Zealand pick their story up. They describe “benefit cuts of between 10 percent and 30 percent for many beneficiaries supporting children.” In fact, for a lone parent with one child, the cut was 10.7%; for those with two, 8.9 percent. The universal family benefit was abolished, but half of the savings were reallocated into increasing Family Support for beneficiaries and low-income families.

Nevertheless, the drop in income was enough to push beneficiary households below the poverty threshold (though they had probably been barely over it prior). Compounding this was the high number of partnered jobless parents created by an unemployment rate exceeding 11 percent in 1992. From that time the proportion of children in poverty, measured at below 60 percent of median disposable household income after housing costs, has been flat to falling slightly.

Sixty nine percent of children in sole parent households are poor compared to 15 percent in two parent families. Today, a lone parent heads around 30 percent of all families with dependent children. Long-term dependent sole parent families aren’t typically the result of a marriage breakdown. They hail from very young mothers with no educational qualifications, work skills or regular partner.

Every year around one in five new-born babies will be reliant on their caregivers benefit by Christmas. This pattern has persisted from at least 1993. For Maori the number jumps to over one in three.   Add to this Treasury’s advice to the Ministerial Committee on Child Poverty,

“…around 1 in 5 children will spend more than half of their first 14 years in household supported by main benefit. This group is at the highest risk of material hardship and poor outcomes across a range of dimensions”.

The worrying aspect of this pattern is its persistence through good economic times. In 2007, when New Zealand had record low unemployment, the percentage bottomed at around 19%. Over three quarters will rely on a sole parent benefit, the remainder on either an unemployment or disability benefit. While some of the reliance will be due to unforeseen circumstances like are job redundancy, most could have been predicted by the parent.
png
In a recent Listener column Jonathan Boston wrote “…it is worth pausing and considering how easy we would find it to raise children under such circumstances.” The same counsel should be put to those people who can actually change the pattern. Though too much emphasis on “personal responsibility” would give less weight to “fairness and compassion” according to the book. Why these societal attributes would be mutually exclusive is unclear. Read more »

Rodney Hide on unions buying influence in politics

Rodney Hide has a column in the Herald on Sunday where he looks at unions and they buying of influence in politics.

The true donations scandal in New Zealand politics was reported this week without comment. It’s the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union’s $60,000 donation to Labour.

The EPMU is one of the six unions affiliated to Labour. The affiliated unions pay fees and fund the Party through donations. The donations and fees total hundreds of thousands of dollars.

More significantly, union staff campaign for Labour and the unions run parallel campaigns. For example, Labour is campaigning for the “living wage”. In a parallel campaign the Services and Food Workers Union spent more than half a million dollars last year promoting that exact policy.

The union funding of Labour totals in the millions. And what does Labour provide in return? In effect the entire party. The unions get to determine the party’s leader. Their say counts for 20 per cent of the vote. That’s the difference between winning and losing by a wide margin.

Affiliation also buys a seat at the table. The affiliated unions have a guaranteed vice-president position on Labour’s all-powerful New Zealand Council.

They also get their people as MPs. The Labour Party enables the unions to parachute members into Parliament. Labour list MP Andrew Little headed the EPMU for 11 years before entering Parliament.

Being a union boss come Labour’s list selection time isn’t as good as being a Maori lesbian but it’s a close second.

And the unions get policy, lots of policy. In 1999 the EPMU gave $100,000 to Labour. The following year the Labour Government passed the Employment Relations Act. This act gives the unions incredible power over Kiwi workplaces as well as easy access to workers’ pay packets.

The Employment Relations Act nicely closes the loop. The act was provided by the Labour Party. It gave the unions access to workers’ pockets, and that’s the money the unions now tip into Labour’s coffers.

Indeed, in the state sector it’s policy for Government to give union members a bonus to cover their union fees. You and I pay their union fees.

Read more »

Traders v. Diplomats

Rodney Hide looks at the differences between John Key and Cunliffe in his NBR column.

Here’s a challenging question: what’s the difference between John Key and David Cunliffe?

One’s winning and one’s losing  but why? It can’t be policy. The policy difference between National and Labour is wafer thin.

[...]

Mr Key has caught the big wave. He is serenely surfing to the beach doing the occasional cartwheel and handstand just to show he can. Meanwhile, Mr Cunliffe can’t catch a wave. One moment he’s becalmed, the next he’s dashed on rocks.

The defining contrast is the picture of Mr Key having personal time with President Obama. And Mr Cunliffe with his deputy having to swear allegiance to stave off coup rumours. The difference could not be more stark.

I know both men. Both are intelligent, hard working and good. But here’s the difference: Mr Key was a trader; Mr Cunliffe a diplomat.

Traders have to deliver. If they don’t deliver they’re toast. No amount of spin can save them. To trade they must be trustworthy and offer value. If a trader can’t improve your lot, he or she is no use to you.

In comparison, foreign affairs is all spin. There is no objective outcome. There is no delivery of value. It’s smooching and small talk. It’s all process and no result. It’s about always adjusting your position to present company and political dictate.

Traders must earn their living. They have customers and have to respect and provide for them. Government employees don’t. They are paid irrespective of performance. They don’t have customers; they have political bosses.    Read more »