Auckland Council keeping the size of Bob Harvey’s trough a secret


The Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance says that the size of Bob Harvey’s new council trough should be made public, instead of the secret it is now.

The Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance is calling out Auckland Council for its secretive approach to ratepayer money after it shot down the Alliance’s enquiries regarding the remuneration of Sir Bob Harvey in his new role as ‘Champion for Auckland – overseas investment’. After Friday’s announcement the Ratepayers’ Alliance asked whether and how much Sir Bob was to be paid for the role. A spokesperson for the Mayor’s office emailed back that evening with “Bob’s pay is personal information which Auckland Council won’t be releasing.”   Read more »

Seriously? You have this guy talking about Maori leadership?


Maori politics is often confusing to an outsider. That’s why when a source in Wellington sent us this link to the upcoming Maori Public Health Symposium, it was worth a look.

It didn’t take long to see who they were concerned about – my good friend Shane Kawenata Federick Bradbrook, who for some very very strange reason is talking about Maori public health leadership.

This trougher has been exposed again and again for refusing to get out of the trough.

Shane Kawenata Federick Bradbrook continues to be in denial about what he actually delivered for the $1.2 million that Te Reo Marama received – and why the Ministry of Health axed their funding.

Instead he blames #DirtyPolitics.

Our source in Wellington is saying there’s a lot of unease about having Shane Kawenata Federick Bradbrook on the Public Health Association’s panel, especially when he’s been so discredited as someone who believes travelling around the world on the conference circuit is actually helping Maori.

Here’s how Shane Kawenata Federick Bradbrook is positioning himself;


He’s got one thing right, years of troughing off the taxpayer so he can race around the world saving Maori. Though I am still at a loss as to what the kaffiyeh means to Maori.

Still he’s been a warrior in the “tobacco resistance movement” if such a thing even exists anywhere else other than the fanciful delusions of Shane Kawenata Federick Bradbrook.

Maybe he’s going to talk about Nga Manukura (leadership) in troughing?

On thing is for sure, Maori have a great sense of humour, as they can’t be serious saying the ‘Symposium will showcase the new wave of Maori public health leadership’ when they have Shane Kawenata Federick Bradbrook involved.


Pimping the Poor, World Champion Contender

Darryl Evans via TVNZ

Darryl Evans, via TVNZ

This is a reader-contributed article

A few days ago, WO posted a grizzle from trougher Darryl Evans of the taxpayer funded Mangere Budgeting Service, whining about a new Government initiative to protect the hard-done-by.. To illustrate his case, Darryl trotted out one Margaret Perry, a “randomly selected” victim.

Well guess what, and it isn’t surprising – Margaret the hapless victim seems to be the go-to example for moaning Darryl.

Let’s look at a few years – yes years – of history:

So back in 2011, our Margaret was Darryl’s hard-done by victim of Chrisco.

Read more »

#Nannystate back-pedals after threatening dairies


What a fiasco. Auckland Regional Public Health Service’s (ARPHS) Dr Julia Peters is now back-pedaling faster than a duck on heat.

Yesterday Julia Peters was front and centre blaming dairies for the obesity problem in Auckland and said they shouldn’t be allowed to sell unhealthy foods.

What a difference 24 hours can make.

Following a backlash from near on everyone, Julia Peters had to go back on air trying to defend her calls. But did she?

No. Instead she’s now saying

She says the dairy idea was one of many in the ARHPS paper, and has been overblown.

“We’re not looking at a ban on dairies – in fact, that’s not even in the paper.

Read more »

Troughers hate supermarkets – Because they won’t work with them


Another post from the so-called ‘Public Health Expert’ blog by the troughers at the University of Otago, this time called “the allure of a Virtual Supermarket for public health nutrition research’.

Academics have never had much luck working with people in the real world, so instead they’ve gone and created a virtual supermarket  to ensure they don’t actually have to to speak to anyone.

Maybe the best place to start answering this question is the original reason as why we built the Virtual Supermarket: to test food pricing strategies. Most people will have heard of this public health intervention in the form of fat tax, sugar tax, soft drink tax or similar policy. The idea behind these taxes is simple and goes back to one of the fundamentals of economic theory – if you increase the price of a good, demand will decrease and vice versa. So, if we want people to eat less unhealthy foods, we increase the price, “problem solved”.

If only it was that simple.

Apart from any practical concerns, the effectiveness of food taxes is highly uncertain. The biggest issue being so-called cross price elasticity effects. Let me explain – if you increase the price of sugary drinks, we expect people will buy less sugary drinks. But, maybe, people like their sugary drinks so much that they keep buying them, leaving them with less money to spend on other foods (no money left for broccoli!). The same applies to subsidies. If you make fruit and vegetables cheaper, people might buy more of them. But, chances are, they spend the money they saved from the cheap produce on other (unhealthier) products (I can have chocolate after I eat my broccoli).

Read more »

Otago Uni’s Department of Arse Clowns

Arse Clowns

The other day academics troughers from the University of Otago’s Department of Public Health Troughers pimped out a claim that a salt tax could reap in $450 million.

The Taxpayers thought the claim was a pile of goat poo and looked into this wild claim.

As a result of their investigations they’re now calling out Otago University to pull in their researchers.

Research by the Taxpayers’ Union indicates that the $450 million tax revenue suggested by Otago University Associate Professor Nick Wilson from a salt tax would result in a 2,500% increase in the price of salt for Kiwi consumers.

Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:

“The vast majority of the salt manufactured in New Zealand is used for pharmaceutical and agricultural purposes, with only around 30,000 tonnes being used for food products.Professor Wilson’s $450 million over 30,000 tonnes is $15,000 in tax per tonne. A tonne of food grade salt is currently worth around $600 in the wholesale market.”

“Unless Professor Wilson is wanting to tax the salt consumed by cows and the saline solution used by hospitals, his numbers mean consumers will be paying 25 times the current price for salt.”*   Read more »

Another excuse for the fatties


Here we go again. Nothing like giving more excuses to people who can’t be bothered getting off their back-sides and going for a walk.

Apparently Australians are tapping their way to becoming fatter, faster.   Read more »

Anti-sugar troughers desperate for attention


Yesterday we saw Radio New Zealand run the headline ‘Sugar hit is no GDP sweetener’ and the usual use of alarming statistics to try and scare politicians into supporting a sugar tax/fat tax.

According to a report from Morgan Stanley ‘high sugar consumption is set to slash New Zealand’s future economic growth by more than 20% over 20 years’.

They also trotted out the other alarming pearl that ‘when it comes to waistlines, New Zealand…is the third fattest country in the developed world’.

The qualifier of course is to say ‘in the developed world’, so no mention of our Pacific neighbours who would send New Zealand’s obesity ranking tumbling down the list. Country comparisons is like matching apples with walnuts.    Read more »

Len Brown backs his Auckland ’embassy’ staffer

Len Brown is a fool, firstly he comes up with a lamer excuse than John Key and Jami-lee Ross and pretends he didn’t know about his own council spending hundreds of thousands of dollars for a staff member in London.

Now just 12 hours later he is telling an incredulous Bernard Orsman that he is fine with it all.

Auckland’s Mayor, Len Brown, today came out in support of the city council having its very own man in London, at a cost to ratepayers of more than $230,000.

Auckland Council’s economic development arm has created a special contract in London for one of its senior executives, Grant Jenkins, who has moved his family to England.

His English-born wife, Kate, was homesick and had been longing to return home for several years, according to a former council staffer.

The Jenkins have set up home with their two children outside London in the village of Bourne End in Buckinghamshire.

As well as paying about $196,000 for a 12-month contract, ratepayers are picking up Mr Jenkins’ work expenses and office costs at New Zealand Tourism’s headquarters in New Zealand House near Trafalgar Square.

Ratepayers have paid an administration fee of about $15,000 for his contract and contributed $19,841 to the family’s relocation costs.

Last night, a spokeswoman for the mayor said Mr Brown had been unaware of Mr Jenkins’ job in London.

However, Mr Brown came out in support of the contract after being briefed today by officials at Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (Ateed).   Read more »

Steve Joyce is on a tax payer money giveaway rampage

Far from being a careful steward with our money, Joyce is being exposed as a bit of a spendthrift

Taxpayers will pay $1.9 million to bankroll the next two New Zealand Open golf tournaments despite the predicted economic return falling well short of the requirement for such a large investment of public money.

The Major Events Development Fund investment requires a return of $4.50 for each dollar handed out. The 2012 and 2013 golf tournaments, which received taxpayer contributions totalling $1.15 million, returned $2.55 for each dollar received, documents obtained by the Herald under the Official Information Act show.

The projected returns for the 2015 and 2016 events are in a briefing for Minister of Economic Development Steven Joyce.

But the figures have been blacked out in the version given to the Herald. The report does state that the expected returns “are lower than those that would be expected at the requested level of investment”.

Mr Joyce said the projected return was “just one of the things that is taken into consideration”.

Tax payers shouldn’t be propping up rich people.   What is it with the Government and sports like the America’s Cup and the NZ Golf Open?  Both of these attract extremely wealthy players, syndicates, companies and individuals, yet they think nothing of coming to the tax payer money trough and helping themselves. Read more »