SkyCity

Jones continues his jihad against Lotto, still conflicted, Cunliffe says nothing

Shane Jones continues his conflicted jihad against Lotto this morning, though he is veiling it as an attack on Countdown.

He is seriously conflicted out in this matter though with his missus working for SkyCity and SkyCity providing his week day accommodation.

If a glass of milk and a photo opportunity was grounds for resignation because one’s spouse is a director of a company then how much more inappropriate is it for someone to be lobbying against a director competitor of the employer of your spouse?

Labour MP Shane Jones is calling for an end to big Lotto jackpots after attacking supermarket giant Countdown for selling tickets at the checkout counter.

Jones said selling Lotto tickets at the checkout was like putting a poker machine at every counter but worse, because people could pay for the tickets with their credit cards.

“What do you buy? Weetbix, orange or a big fat Wednesday?” he asked.

He believed there should be an immediate review of the Gambling Act that should include a look at the size of the Lotto jackpot, because a $30 million or $40m jackpot was too high.   Read more »

Has Shane Jones declared his conflict of interest?

Shane Jones has launched another attack on Countdown, this time over their desire to sell Lotto tickets at the checkout rather than at a separate counter.

Labour MP Shane Jones has again taken aim at Countdown, raising concerns about lotto sales at the supermarket’s checkouts.

Lotto tickets are being sold despite new evidence that people spend less on food when there is a big jackpot.

You can now buy lotto at the checkouts in 100 Countdown supermarkets around the country. That makes buying a ticket more convenient, but Mr Jones says that is the problem.

“With Countdown putting a one-armed bandit at every Countdown checkout counter, you’re bringing gambling into the community,” says Mr Jones.

I wonder though if Shane Jones was wise to mount such an attack considering his own conflict of interest.  Read more »

Another Labour fail. Making a claim, then having it destroyed in seconds

Yesterday Labour and their proxy blogs made the claims that the Problem Gambling Foundation had lost its funding because it opposed the government deal with SkyCity.

Once again Labour has been caught out.

Labour claims funding for the Problem Gambling Foundation has been stopped because the foundation opposed the deal to increase the number of gambling machines at SkyCity Casino.

But the Government has confirmed the new holder of the contract to provide health and counselling services for problem gamblers throughout New Zealand is the Salvation Army, which also opposed the deal.

Labour’s Internal Affairs Spokesman Trevor Mallard said the foundation was being forced to close its doors because it vocally stood against the deal between the Government and SkyCity to increase the number of pokies in the Auckland casino, in return for building a new national convention centre.

“Staff will this morning be told the foundation has lost its Ministry of Health funding and will close its 12 offices nationwide,” Mallard said.  Read more »

Pants Down Brown faces corruption charges

Bankrupt, convicted fraudster and blackmailer Graham McCready is today laying charges in the courts using a section of the Crimes Act covering corruption for public officials.

The left-wing have cackled for months over McCready’s ongoing prosecution of John Banks so they can hardly complain when one of their own comes under the hammer.

A private prosecution will be brought today against Auckland’s embattled Mayor Len Brown, alleging he broke the law in not declaring hotel freebies from SkyCity.

Two charging documents sent to Auckland District Court by retired Wellington accountant Graham McCready state that between November 2010 and November last year, Mr Brown accepted for himself and his wife Shan Inglis three complimentary hotel rooms and five free room upgrades from SkyCity and SkyCity Grand Hotels.

The gifts, worth about $4600 by Mr McCready’s calculations, led to “favourable consideration” given by Mr Brown towards SkyCity and parent company SkyCity Casinos, say the documents.   Read more »

Fran O’Sullivan – Call in the Auditor-General

Fran O’Sullivan adds another of the cuts in Len Brown’s long and slow death by a 1000 cuts.

Auditor-General Lyn Provost is the right person to take inquiries into Len Brown’s relationship with the SkyCity hotels and casino operator to the obvious next stage.

The mayor of Auckland has attempted to brazen his way through the embarrassing detritus exposed by the EY (Ernst & Young) report into some of the implications of his two-year affair with Bevan Chuang.

But that report, emasculated as it was after legal negotiations between Brown’s lawyer and the Auckland Council’s QC, has put new material on the table which must now be investigated by the Auditor-General herself.

It was fundamentally inappropriate for Brown to take the three freebies and accept five upgrades from the SkyCity and SkyCity Grand hotels in Auckland.

Particularly, as the Auckland Council had to take a position on the Government’s controversial “pokies for convention centre swap” and the mayor – who had previously railed against problem gambling – let his principles melt away.   Read more »

Some in the left are showing some integrity over Len Brown

There are a few on the left starting to realise that Len Brown is stinking up the joint like the 3 week old maggoty carcass of a dead ewe.

Malcolm Harbrow from No Right Turn goes again.

So, it turns out that a pile of Auckland Mayor Len Brown’s free hotel rooms were provided by SkyCity. Coincidentally, Brown also decided to reverse his longstanding opposition to pokies in order to support their pokie-ridden convention centre. I’m not suggesting that there was ever anything so crass as a transaction.   Read more »

Brown didn’t pay with council cash but did take freebies for hotels

No wonder Len Brown is happy for a whitewash inquiry over expenses…he didn’t pay…he did however take freebies for the hotel rooms for his roots, all based on the fact of his position as Mayor.

Bevan Chuang is confident Len Brown will be cleared by a spending inquiry in the wake of their extra-marital affair, saying he paid for everything out of his own pocket.

However, she believed that some of the rooms he booked for the pair were offered free of charge by hotel managers.

Auckland Council chief executive Doug McKay yesterday announced an inquiry into Mr Brown’s spending in the wake of the sex scandal.

Ms Chuang said she met Mr Brown three times at the Langham, SkyCity Grand and Hilton hotels for sex after collecting the keys to the rooms from reception at the Town Hall.

So once again we have Len Brown using council resources…which we already wrote about, but it is worth repeating…staff at reception to hold key cards for Bevan Chuang to collect in order to conduct his illicit and sneaky affair.   Read more »

Another taxpeyer funded Green stunt that wasn’t so cunning

So who paid for the Greens cardboard stunt – we did of course.

The Greens’ cardboard display cost around $3300 – $2150 for the materials and $1150 to book Aotea Square. A spokesman said it was funded from the party leaders’ office budget.

How many trees did they sacrifice?  What was the ink on the boxes made out of.  How did Metiria get to Auckland, in a plane using fuel?  Who paid for that?   Read more »

I bet Clint didn’t think this one through properly

There is no other group that are more sanctimonious and hypocritical than Greens.

They are currently forlornly trying to get a government member to cross the floor to vote against the SkyCity Bill by spamming them from their website.

But look at what they are using as a device to promote their cause.

GreenGamblers Read more »

Another Chart of the Day – Polls

Danyl McLauchlan updates his poll of polls chart, which he alleges corrects for poll bias. It may do, but it doesn’t really matter because for Labour the lines are going in the wrong direction. I’d be interested to know whether the poll bias is mathematically calculated or emotionally calculated.

nzpolls20130724

Danyl explains what the chart shows from his point of view, which is not dissimilar to mine.

(This chart corrects for poll bias – just like Nate Silver! – the code to generate it was writter by Peter Green. You can see a non bias corrected chart here. Note how the aggregated curves for National and NZ First are miles away from the actual election results?)

Labour are losing votes to National, and they’ve lost them during the period of time in which the GCSB bill was introduced and the Sky-City deal signed off. They should be winning, not losing. Shearer has responded by replacing his Chief of Staff with Fran Mold, his former press secretary, and Labour’s MPs are leaking to the gallery that his leadership is under threat if he doesn’t reverse this downward trend.

I don’t have any close contacts within Labour these days, but the second-hand gossip I hear is that staff morale is very low, there’s no longer any expectation they’ll be in government next term and there’s very little respect for the senior MPs currently dominating the party, who are seen as chronic underperformers (Annette King – elected to Parliament thirty years ago – was billed as a superstar Health opposition spokespersonwhen Shearer reshuffled at the start of the year. How’s that working out?)

Changing the CoS doesn’t seem likely to fix the party’s problems, but neither does changing the leader, unless its accompanied by more drastic change.

Danyl forgets about the man-ban debacle in there as well, not just the GCSB and SkyCity issues, which frankly are beltway issues of no import to the wider electorate.