Tony Ryall

The majority of NZs want to pay more for their food? Really?

The NZ Herald has a poll result today where the headline claims that Kiwi want a ‘fat tax’.

fattax

Except that was not was originally asked in the poll.

dpoll

The question is rather clumsy. Imagine the result if they had asked “Do you think it is a good idea to tax ALL Kiwis with a sugar tax, increasing food and drink prices across the board, when it is only fat bastards who should be taxed?”.  Read more »

More from the Herald on The Cunliffe

The Herald has continued their series on “The Cunliffe”.

While last weeks effort would have made The Cunliffe happy I doubt he will be pleased with todays works, especially those by Claire Trevett.

He is fingered as a snitch:

Cunliffe describes that 1999 intake as the first political generation that had not been “scarred” by Rogernomics or the acrimony after it. But that first term also saw the start of the problem Cunliffe has struggled with since – his relations with his caucus colleagues.

Cunliffe and Tamihere gravitated towards each other, part of a group of junior MPs including Clayton Cosgrove and Damien O’Connor, and dubbed themselves the “Mods” – short for Modernisers. They met in each other’s offices for drinks and discussed policies and the direction Labour might take in the longer term, post-Clark. They decided to recruit others and Tamihere says Cunliffe returned with loyal Clarkists. Whether it was innocent or deliberate, he was seen to have dobbed them in.

Cunliffe denies it: “I certainly didn’t go telling tales on class mates. JT and I were in the middle of that group, not everybody agreed with everybody else and in the end it didn’t go that far. But I’d reject that I dobbed anyone in.”

Whatever happened, Cunliffe’s friendship with most in that grouping waned after that point. One onlooker at the time recalls Cunliffe as trying to be friends with everyone. “It was like high school kind of stuff. He’d walk in [to Parliament's cafe] and go ‘g’day bro’ how you going?’ and JT would just look at him like one of the nerdy kids had come up to him in the playground.”

Tamihere says there was no big blow out and they did maintain a professional relationship. Asked about the Mods’ goals now, Tamihere laughs and says “well, you always go down there with those heady ideals.”
“He’s an extraordinarily talented chap but you never get to see the real David. You get to see the David that he thinks you want to see. And that’s his problem.

What Trevett didn’t mention, but my Labour source did, was that after ratting out the Mods to Clark H2 (Heather Simpson) summonsed each of them individually and gave them a dressing down. They were rinsed and it is something that Clayton Cosgrove has never forgotten and why he is the ex-officio leader of the ABCs.  Read more »

Media commentators now pushing for food to be treated like tobacco

I’ve long predicted this, but who would have thought that one of the brightest commentators would fall for the lobbying of the troughers intent on treating food like tobacco.

Unfortunately Colin Espiner has bought the spin that it is the ingredients of food and not the fat bastard stuffing their gobs that is the fault and cause of the so-called obesity epidemic.

We’re eating ourselves to death. Remember how we used to visit America and laugh at how many fat people there were? Who’s laughing now?

Rachel Smalley was right. Many New Zealand women are lardos and heifers. But even more so the men. And, sadly, their kids too.

A new health study has found 1.2 million Kiwis are not just a little bit pudgy around the middle, but obese. That’s nearly one in three adults and one in nine children. And that’s the overall average. In poorer areas of the country, it’s closer to 50 per cent.

How has this happened? How has New Zealand become the fattest nation in the OECD after America and Mexico? Aren’t we supposed to be a fit, outdoorsy nation living on fresh air and natural produce?

Health experts have been warning us for ages, but we haven’t taken any notice. Back when National took office in 2008, it was out with Nanny State and those pesky, dictatorial healthy eating programmes.

Labour was pilloried for banning pies and soft drinks and cream buns and sweets from school tuck shops. It wasn’t the state’s job to reach into the lunchboxes of our kids, we cried.

State funded health experts building lobbying businesses off of the back of ever increasing state funding…lobbying the government to spend even more with them…compromised much?

National wasn’t a fan of funding obesity programmes or education either. It felt the money spent on curbing our interest in unhealthy eating wasn’t actually a health priority. So Health Minister Tony Ryall cut funding for the Obesity Action Coalition. It closed on March 1, 2010.

But that wasn’t all. National scrapped the roles of district health board staff who helped schools implement healthy food and drink guidelines for schools implemented by Labour. More nanny stateism and bureaucratic red tape, it said. Better to channel the money into school sport – there’s not much a run around the footy field can’t fix.   Read more »

National’s renewal continues as Tau Henare says E noho rā

Tau Henare has announced his  retirement from politics.

And Stuff reports:

Henare was first elected to Parliament in 1993 elections for New Zealand First in the former Northern Maori electorate.

He is currently chair of the Maori Affairs select committee and a member of the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade committee.

This morning, Henare did not deny suggestions his hand was forced by the likelihood of him receiving a low list ranking going into the September election.

He told RadioLive he expected his list ranking in a National Party reshuffle would be “more than 100″.

Henare said it was his own decision and he was happy about it.

“Most probably, it doesn’t really matter. To me the decisions been made and I’m very very comfortable and relaxed about it,” he said.  Read more »

Vernon Small on Labour’s “issues”

Yesterday Vernon Small wrote about the biggest issue facing Labour ahead of this year’s election.

Well the biggest problem after the issue with their tits leader….rejuvenation…or rather the lack of it.

 In politics rejuvenation rates alongside succession planning. Both are easy catchcries and generally seen as “a good thing”.

In reality they are a type of parliamentary Nimby-ism – nice to have if it is someone else who is vacating a seat, and fine as long as you are not the leader whose replacement is being groomed.

On the National side of the aisle rejuvenation is in full swing. At last count 14 MPs have either gone or are going out of a caucus of 59. It is generally accepted as a worthwhile and necessary refreshment of the party. Certainly it is being handled well and without any overt bloodletting. No dummies have been spat in the remaking of the National caucus.

Of course if the polls were different it would be a different story. Shave a theoretical five points off the Government and give it to the Opposition and the narrative might be akin to the “rats leaving a sinking ship” theme that Labour leader David Cunliffe has tried to get up.

But that just looks lame when the last three polls had National harvesting enough support to govern alone.  Read more »

Ryall Retires

Tony Ryall has announced his retirement from politics.

Ryall is one of the better performers in parliament and in his role as minister.

In particular his job in Health has neutered what is traditionally seen as easy portfolio for the opposition to attack the government. Successive health spokes-people have failed to touch Tony Ryall in that portfolio. Many ministers in the past have failed as Health Minister and so it is a major accomplishment for Tony in that role.

Tony Ryall has confirmed he will retire at the next election, but remain a government minister until he bows out of politics.

“I am looking forward to being part of New Zealand’s dynamic future in the private sector,” Ryall said in an announcement today.  Read more »

This will be happening here for sure

Tony Ryall and Bill English…instead of bathing in their rock star moment should be looking hard at this sort of carry on where charities are spending millions of dollars of taxpayer funding in aiding and abetting left-wing campaigns.

Alternatively the Taxpayers’ Union will just humiliate them.

Charities are using millions of pounds of public money to subsidise fashionable political campaigns, a report warns today.

A study by the Institute for Economic Affairs says many well-known charities are using taxpayers’ cash to push for causes, such as increased foreign aid spending, which ‘are not priorities for the electorate and are often unpopular’.

It comes as MPs condemn the Charity Commission as feeble and ‘not fit for purpose’ as the watchdog refuses to name charities which are under investigation.

Warning that the practice undermines the democratic process, the IEA report calls on ministers to introduce strict curbs.

The report’s author, Christopher Snowden, said: ‘Using taxpayers’ money to fund special interest groups is both immoral and an inefficient use of public money.

‘By crowding out privately-funded voluntary organisations, this taxpayer-funded bloc of charities, quangos and non-government organisations subverts the democratic process.

‘It is vital that measures are introduced to prevent state-funded political activism and make taxpayers aware of how their money is being spent. Charities and NGOs that are dependent on government funding are not independent of government.’

The study examines the activities of 25 charities that receive funding from the taxpayer.   Read more »

Troughers demanding more coin from Ryall

Swinburn et al from the anti-obesity industry tucking into more government coin

Swinburn et al from the anti-obesity industry tucking into more government coin

Sometimes Tony Ryall must really shake his head in despair.  Especially when he sees his Ministry funded troughers bitching that the Government needs to dole out more money to them.

Yesterday I posted about Obesity ‘Experts’ Ignore Simple Truths, showing trougher Professor Cliona Ni Mhurchu tucking into a $5 million handout to justify her calls for fat taxes, bans and labelling changes.

2013 Trougher of the Year Boyd Swinburn must have spat out his Kellogg’s Nutri- Grain when he saw Cliona Ni Mhurchu getting a big spread in yesterday’s Horrid, talking up her efforts.  Read more »

2013 Trougher of the Year

This category is a tough one. The trough is awash with do-gooders, fake charities, Maori trusts, and even Green Taliban supporting hippy groups.

There’s also troughers like scumbag unions that tuck their members for hundreds, if not thousands of dollars a year so union bosses can traipse around the country looking as though they’re doing something.

But there was one candidate that gained some attention on the blog this year that did stand out as a leading example of tucking into the public trough at a rate that would leave JT’s Waipareira Trust looking on in awe.

The 2013 WO Trougher of the Year therefore goes to none other than… Boyd Swinburn, Professor of Population Nutrition & Global Health at the University of Auckland.

Read more »

We need a fat bastard tax not fat tax

Travel blogger David Farrar congratulates Tony Ryall for not pursuing fat taxes.

He is commenting on The Herald report:

New Zealand is getting fatter – with three in every 10 adults now regarded as obese.

A leading diabetes researcher has called the new figures alarming and has accused the Government of failing to take the problem seriously.

However, Health Minister Tony Ryall has rejected “nanny state” measures, instead arguing that providing information and support to people is enough.   Read more »