The Mosquito Device

Power of Recall needed for Supercity

The Mad Mayor of North Shore, Andrew Williams, the Clown of Campbells Bay has proven yet again why Rodney Hide needs to seriously consider the adding the power of recall into the legislation for the new Auckland Super City.

It is idiots like Andrew Williams that do the reputation of good governance no service at all with their antics.

Glenfield Community Board member and former councillor David Thorton agrees and calls for the Power of Recall.

In a media release yesterday, “Hide’s fundraising rort the first of many”, North Shore Andrew Williams once again lodges into an ill-informed personal attack on a government minister.

Mayor Williams gets paid a sizeable salary by his ratepayers and should not be spending even more ratepayers’ money on making continued rude, personal and unnecessary media attacks on Local Government Minister Rodney Hide.

His latest outburst concerns an ACT Party fundraiser in Christchurch – and has no relevance at all to the ratepayers of North Shore City .

For many months Mayor Williams has achieved notoriety for his personal attacks on other mayors and government ministers – with absolutely nothing gained for the city he is meant to be serving.

If New Zealand had a system of ‘recall’ for elected members who failed their voters I believe Mayor Williams would have been long gone.

He has presided over a council which introduced the highest rates increases in the Auckland region and one of the highest in the country.

His council, in secret – without consultation, paid over $4 million for a beachfront house that was valued at just over $2 million.

In an ongoing battle, victims of a landslip have been trying to get a fair deal from Mayor William’s council – but have been refused information as all meetings on solutions to their problems are held in secret.

For a city the size of Auckland i believe that Minister Hide would do well to introduce recall provisions to the Supercity Bill so the public do not have to suffer the vagaries of meat-axes like Williams or fools like Hubbard.

National Party Board – The Contenders

Given that National is looking at its National Conference in August to select members for the board and in turn those members select a president I think it is timely to look at the 8 candidates for the 5 board positions.

Alastair Bell – popular and competent regional chair of the Northern Region, likely to be president one day, rated by other regional chairs and party hierarchy for not making too many mistakes in Northern, especially when considering regional chairs are a bit like referees, if they do their job well you don’t notice them. Interesting he won nominations of electorates ahead of Scott Simpson and Grant McCallum. There is a strong case to have the Auckland Regional Chair on the Board automatically due to the huge importance of Auckland. He also appears to be well-liked outside of Auckland so that will certainly help him.

Dennis Catchpole – very much old school, and in a way that is detrimental. He is bullish which could be a strength however he tends to alienate members in the process. He also has trouble listening vs putting across his own agenda. Failed to shine at the recent Central North Island conference so was beaten to the regional chair position.

Wira Gardiner – As I have stated previously, this man is totally unsuited to a role on the board or the presidency. He is your classic fair weather friend and has been so on numerous occasions. Throwing your toys and having conflicts of interest aren’t a good look for any prospective board member let alone the President. The National Party has traditionally eschewed Presidents considered to have close links with caucus preferring instead to have an arms length relationship between the party and caucus.

Kate Hazlett – Somewhat lightweight but is only candidate from South Island and a woman so likely to get through. Has a tendency toward moderation or backing down rather than staying true to her own case.

Grant McCallum – Currently on the Board. Solid performer. He has the farmer vote but also has the respect of many urban types. He appears to understand how a Board should and does work. Members seem to like him as he does front up when asked. Not a contender for President though as he is perhaps a little too provincial.

Bruce Mills – Solid agrarian type who may suffer because NZ is no longer an agrarian population. Close to Simon Power, which won’t necessarily do him too many favours as Simon hasn’t done the hard yards in the rest of the country to have a huge amount of support or friends he can get favours from. Also handicapped by Simon Power’s presumption of stardom.

Pat Seymour – Tough and competent, will stand up to caucus would be a huge asset to the board, also second woman standing so likely to be selected on that basis as well. She is well-respected though has a tendency to put some members to tears. She has served in most parts of the party organisation so has a good feel how it works – plus kept the organisation running successfully in an electorate that had no MP for a number of years.

Scott Simpson – Good Regional Chair in his time but he wont be picking up many South Island votes as he has been a bit too parochial in the past, backing Auckland candidates to the hilt, rather than being willing to compromise a bit. We do have to win in Auckland but we don’t need to gerrymander the list. Still he is way more qualified than Wira Gardiner and a loyal party man who has never quit even in the tough times. Scott also has an affinity with younger members (despite his age) and has the future of the party t heart (ahead of personal ambition).

Returning Board members are Roger Bridge and Peter Goodfellow.

Roger Bridge has done a good job in Canterbury, and may surprise because he has a track record of helping raise money for candidates outside his region, the kind of thing that ensures massive long term loyalty. Very solid strategic understanding. However, he does have a tendency to fall asleep in meetings!

I don’t know enough about Peter Goodfellow to comment, however it suggests a great deal that I don’t know anything about him.

The most important task for the new board is to elect a competent president. I think we can safely discount anyone not on the board at the moment, and leaving Grant, Scott, Roger & Peter, with Alistair being an outside possibility.

My view on it is:

  • must be willing to professionalise the party, which means a solid understanding of campaigning, the power of incumbency, the best way to increase the party vote is to run a strong, competent candidate who has a great campaign team
  • need to raise money, or be sensible enough to delegate this task to others
  • popular within the party
  • willing to stand up to the parliamentary wing and tell them the truth when everyone else is saying yes caucus you are all stars and brilliant and everyone does love you

There is also a lot of chatter about how we need a president from Auckland, however geographical location is not a proxy for competence, and last time we had a president from Auckland it was a total screw up, we ended up in massive debt and with the worst ever election result in the history of the party.

I reckon the biggest single problem the National Party faces is that the President, who is the chair of the board, is expected to be the top sales person also, raising all the money. In theory this works but in practice unless the person is extremely competent at fundraising then it doesn’t really work. It doesn’t work because the rest of the board can’t really hold the chair to account for not doing a good sales job, and the general manager certainly can’t as they are employed at the pleasure of the board.

Fundraising is a critical component that the party really needs to have a good look at. Perhaps a split in fundraising between strategic fundraising and standard fundraising could produce some results. There is strong case that a good portion of fundraising activity reports directly to the GM, who is accountable to the board. However an attempt was made to do this previously and failed miserably, mostly because people want the interaction with the President.

Labour's already broken promise

Labour is so bereft of policy it takes quite a while to track anything down. One of my trolls helpfully pointed me to one of Labour’s rubbish sites and said there is heaps of policy there. It is hardly policy, more a bunch of bland marketing statements.

Nevertheless this little gem was there that made me snort my Coke Zero all over the keyboard;

Labour lies already

So the election is barely underway and Labour has already broken one of their policy planks with their “Decade of Deficits” economic package.

The election is to be fought on trust and straight out of the blocks Helen Clark has shown us she can be trusted to break promises.

Undeclared donation 'a mistake'

Undeclared donation ‘a mistake’ says NZ First MPNew Zealand First’s failure to declare a reported $50,0000 has been labelled a mistake by one of its MPs. It follows reports The Spencer Trust paid the party the money before the 2005 election. National is questioning whether… [NZ Herald Politics]

Winston Raymond Peters, 63, List MP of no fixed abode has now got his MP’s lying their asses off for him. Peter Brown was put up to try to farcically explain that it was all a mistake. Except they got all of their fact wrong as DPF helpfully points out.

The MSM still haven’t cottoned on to the fact that it is impossible for a cheque from Sir Robert to have shown up on the Spencer Trust documents as displayed.

Newsflash Winston, you are a liar, and we all know it.

Stood down but not stood down

Peters gone… but could be backWinston Peters has stood aside from his prized Foreign Affairs portfolio with an exit designed to give every suggestion of it being temporary. A day after the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) announced it had enough evidence to conduct… [NZ Herald Politics]

Contrary to reports that Winston Raymond Peters, 63, List MP of no fixed abode has been stood down and lost all of his baubles that simply isn’t the case. The NZ Herald has it dead wrong as they list all the baubles he loses. He is still a minister, he still gets a ministerial salary, a car, a house etc.

Helen Clark has slapped WRP, 63, LMPONFA on the hand with a wet bus ticket and in fact rewarded the slimy arse by taking all of his work away from him so he can campaign on the taxpayers tit without the annoying work stuff interrupting his busy meetings begging Grey Power for some support.

Clark has failed to demonstrate real leadership and has avoided confrontation with WRP, 63, LMPONFA in order the retain her grasp on the baubles of power herself.

John Key meanwhile has made it categorically and abundantly clear that neither WRP, 63, LMPONFA nor his party are welcome at any coalition deal making. This leaves Clark, ironically, cuddling the corpse of New Zealand First in order to get her taudry and corrupt government re-elected. Clearly her nose is seriously blocked and she can’t smell the stench of the rotten corpse.

What is all this horseshit about sub-judice?

With all the parliamentary shenanigins over the past week in shutting down Rodney Hide from speaking the truth in a chamber that is supposed to uphold the truth I thought I would look a little deeper into this sub-judice horseshit that Winston Raymond Peters, 63, List MP of no fixed abode is relying on to silence Rodney.

In doing my homework I came across an interesting piece by no less a media illuminati and leftist apologist than Russell Brown. All the same players are in this piece including the defender of scum Peter Williams QC and WRP, 63, LMPONFA vicariously through the shenanigins of Tuku Morgan.

In fact the parallels between this case and the case currently before us are interesting. Read and enjoy and then ask yourself this question, What does Russell Brown think about all this now?

This week’s staggering installment began when Tuku’s lawyer, Chris Reid, began calling the two main TV networks offering an exclusive interview with his client, an elected representative of the people – to which the response of any sane journalist must surely be “Can you just hold on a minute while I get my tape recorder?” While TVNZ – which has been prepared to whip out the chequebook twice recently – hummed and haaed, TV3′s John Campbell decided the real story was the MP for sale, and recorded a conversation where Reid pretty quickly established that $20,000 was the minimum sum for which his client would open his mouth.

This course of action will have come as little suprise to anyone who heard the self-righteous barbs about chequebook journalism dished out by TV3 staff at the Qantas Media Awards last Friday. Yet Morgan and his lawyers days later went and offered 3 National News a chance to not so much take the moral high ground as go up and pitch a bloody great big tent there.

Yet Peter Williams, QC, who represents Morgan and retained Reid, maintained the day after the story broke that young Mr Campell had lacked maturity, and had dragged down the standards of his profession by breaking a confidence. I don’t think so. It is Peter Williams who risks collateral damage if he keeps on keeping such company.

We all heard the tape, and Reid was most of the way through his wheeling and dealing before he thought to say it was off the record. But more importantly, I don’t believe being a journalist means being obliged to play along with greedy little games of this sort. Why should Campbell have heard out this extraordinary plan and then ignored it as news, simply because the protagonists desired it that way?

So what was so bad about Tuku asking to see the money? This: He is an elected representative of the people and as such is the subject of quite a few privileges. He is also accountable to the public – that’s one of the hard things about the job. And an MP is especially accountable when he or she has a bit of a whoopsie. Yet Morgan has spent months refusing to explain himself on the basis that his actions at Aotearoa Television and since are “sub judice” because he has taken a million dollar defamation action against Labour’s Trevor Mallard.

Most legal opinion tended to the view that this was preposterous, and now, Morgan himself seems prepared to ignore it – for a large fee. It now appears that Reid even sought to flog off the Tuku story to Woman’s Day – on an exclusive basis, of course. Can we look forward then, to more politicians taking bids for their time?

Morgan, eventually, did turn up for an interview – on the Holmes show, where he was dragged kicking and screaming into the most grudging, qualified apology imaginable to the young people he let down at ATN. He palpably did not believe he had anything to apologise for. Not the huge directors’ fees, not the trips to Europe, not the spending sprees, not the financial waste dump he helped to create and not the bloody boxer shorts. And of course, there was never a hint of contrition over the attempt to sell himself off. As David Lange pronounced on the other channel minutes before, Mr Morgan is “a liar, terminally greedy and suicidally arrogant”.

But Morgan believes he is being pursued not for his words and deeds, but for the colour of his skin. The press, he believes, is picking on him because he’s Maori. Well I’m sorry pal, but I won’t be called a racist just so you can go on deluding yourself. And, I might add, lying to your leader.

No amount of fudging gets around the fact that Morgan lied to Winston Peters over his cash for questions project, causing Peters in turn to lie to the press. He also lied to his caucus – and at the time of writing, only John Delamere and the awful Rana Watai had indicated they were happy to forgive. That may have left Morgan very vulnerable when the Serious Fraud Office delivers its report on ATN.

Hmmmm…Russell, What say you now on the WRP, 63, LMPONFA affair?

What does Trevor know?

With all the allegations swirling around Helen Clark and Winston Raymond Peters, 63, List MP of no fixed abode something was missed in Cullen’s responses on behalf of the Prime Minister.

That was that not only ha s Helen Clark known all along since February about Owen Glenn’s donation to WRP, 63, LMPONFA but so has Trevor Mallard.

Hon Dr MICHAEL CULLEN: I thank the member. The notion that it is all some kind of huge secret seems to ignore the fact that on Tuesday, 20 February, on the 6 p.m. news, Television New Zealand carried the story that some kind of donation had been made to the New Zealand First party by Mr Owen Glenn. This was then followed up with a front-page story on 21 February in the New Zealand Herald, and that day Mr Glenn, of course, was attending the opening of the new business school at Auckland University, and the Prime Minister in the presence of Mr Trevor Mallard took the opportunity to talk with Mr Glenn and ask him whether in fact he had made a donation.

So, not only has Clark misled the nation in her desperate attempt to cling to power but she has been aided and abetted by Trevor Mallard in keeping Labour’s secret agenda, that of protecting WRP, 63, LMPONFA at all costs so that they could further their continued secret agenda of implementing socially destructive policies that rob Kiwi’s of freedom.

Political opponents united in demanding swift action

Political opponents united in demanding swift actionReaction from Winston Peters’ political opponents to the Serious Fraud Office investigation has been swift and merciless. National leader John Key said the Prime Minister should stand Mr Peters down immediately. “She should… [NZ Herald Politics]

The NZ Herald outlines comments from various leaders about Winston Raymond Peters, 63, Member of Parliament of no fixed abode.

Rodney Hide;

“If having a minister mislead her and mislead Parliament isn’t enough, having a Minister of Foreign Affairs under investigation by the Serious Fraud Office – well, what sort of look does that give New Zealand? Imagine the briefing notes other countries are getting on the Minister of Foreign Affairs as they come to our country.”

“Winston’s bluff and bluster won’t work on the Serious Fraud Office. He won’t be able to decide when he answers the questions, or how he answers them.”

Pita Sharples

“We are so close to the election, there’s a couple of bills the Government needs to put through and Winston’s party is right there in the middle supporting that. It’s quite a political drama and I’m quite interested in just watching it play out.”

Indeed, atching this train-wreck is going to be most entertaining.

Helen Clark's longest day

High drama and surprises in Helen Clark’s longest dayPrime Minister Helen Clark will today have to decide whether to do what others have been pushing her to since February, when the issue of donations to New Zealand First first began to bubble. The Prime Minister has continued to… [NZ Herald Politics]

I think Helen Clark had no idea that the Serious Fraud Office was going to announce their investigation yesterday but she was very concerned to get in early about revealing that Owen Glenn told her about the donation in February. Ultimately her little strategy backfired when the SFO announced their investigation because it made a bad day worse.

The Herald also outlines Clark’s defence of Winston Raymond Peters, 63, Member of Parliament of no fixed abode and has a lovely little Emmerson cartoon that shows the true damage to Clark. They even have a handy link to Clark’s Rogues Gallery.

The damage is done and Clark’s little charade of coming clean hasn’t helped. The word on the street too is that Owen Glenn isn’t best pleased to have been labelled a liar in the parliament by Michael Cullen. I think I might trot off to Wellington next Thursday and video the Privileges Committee, should be fun to watch as Owen Glenn drops WRP, 63, MOPONFA and Helen Clark right in tha cack.

Some very important questions

These are very germane to today’s revelations

  1. If Helen knew about the donation in February and asked Winston how come he didn’t know until July?
  2. If Helen knew about the donation in February and asked Winston, how come Brian told Winston in July?
  3. If Helen knew about the donation in February and asked Winston how come he said No on February 28 2008?
  4. Does No mean Yes?
  5. If Owen Glenn deposited the money into the Brian Henry Practice account what went into NZ First accounts in Dec 2007?
  6. What was the source of the funds in the NZ First accounts that Dail Jones told us about in Dec 2007?
  7. How annoyed will Owen Glen be when he finds out that Cullen basically called him a liar in the house today?
  8. What are the odds of an earlier election?
  9. Why did Helen wait until today?
  10. What has Winston got on Helen?
  11. Will anyone take a bet that the Privileges Committee will never finish its work before Clark calls the election?
  12. Now that Key has ruled out Peters (but not NZ First) from a future Cabinet, and Ron Mark has announced he will run for the seat of Rimutaka, is it possible the party could dump Winston in favour of the heir apparent?
  13. What does Winston have to do to be sacked by Clark? Lie more?