Winston

Good Riddance Ted Kennedy

Senator Ted Kennedy has died and he can now finally make his peace with Mary Jo Kopechne forty years after he killed her. In the 1969 Chappaquiddick incident, the car Kennedy was driving ran off a bridge and plunged into water, resulting in the death of passenger Mary Jo Kopechne.

As the old joke goes, more people have died in Ted Kennedy’s car than in US nuclear accidents.

Cool Toys on Saturday

Sick of hearing about Winston Raymond Peters, 63, List MP of no fixed abode? Well today is Saturday so should be a time of rest therefore enjoy reading up about these cool toys. From Gizmag

The Dillion M134

the electrically-powered Dillon Aero M134D Minigun is taking the concept to new heights, using six barrels to fire up to 4,000 7.62 MM bullets per minute. As the modular M134D system can be easily adapted to any platform, it is finding favour in a host of new fearsome forms, most notably in the BAE -built Remote Guardian System being tested beneath V-22 Ospreys. Perhaps even scarier is the prospect of the weapon being used aboard the Ripsaw MS-1, a tracked 650-horsepower Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) under development which is capable of accelerating to 50 mph from standstill in around four seconds, turning in its own length and taking a 30 foot high 45 degree hill in its stride. Now is not a good time to be on the wrong team. Proof? Watch this!

WaveBlades Body Surfing Gloves

The Waveblade is a hand-worn glove-like Bodysurfing device that enables you to catch waves that were previously uncatchable, go faster and further and do new tricks thanks to the extra control available. You can also swim faster – all for US$200.

Not surprisingly, over the years the hand-made WaveBlade has evolved , got lighter and now comes in several sizes so that it suits suits more people and waves both big and small. The company has a wholesome family feel that evolved from the surfing community mentality and still offers its original money-back guarantee. Because it’s all hand-made, you can even send them a half yard of lycra spandex and have your waveblade made in the design of your choosing for no extra cost.

Lotus Concept Ice Vehicle

Look closely and you’ll see a Lotus badge on the side of this fascinating device. Built to act as a scout to plan routes for heavier vehicles on flat, hard-packed ice, the Concept Ice Vehicle is set to perform its first tour of duty in Antarctica with the Moon Regan Transarctic Expedition. Three oversize, suspended skis give the ultra-light CIV a low friction contact patch, and handle the steering as the biofuel-powered propeller drives the vehicle forward. Braking is another issue – a large, spiked metal arm is forced down into the smooth ice, dragging the CIV to a halt – and it comes equipped with a radar to detect hidden ice crevasses that could spell trouble for the rest of the team.

 

Pus, Superating wounds, swollen egos

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As predicted there is more


Minister wrote letter on affair rumour – New Zealand, world, sport, business & entertainment news on Stuff.co.nz

This is what happens when you lie in unison and collude to have an orchestrated litany of lies to support your less than tenuous position. The truth comes out!

Today the DomPost reveals that Annette King a HBDHB staff member who alerted her husband to rumours he was having an affair.

It is understood Ms King wrote a letter to board employee Jacqueline Parisi that made Ms Parisi feel threatened.

Ms Parisi, who had worked as the general manager of organisational development, later resigned and now lives overseas.

It is understood Ms Parisi had contacted Ms King’s husband, Ray Lind, to alert him about rumours circulating among staff that he was having an affair with a colleague.

Mr Lind, who was employed at the time as the DHB’s chief operating officer, had hand-delivered his wife’s letter to DHB chief executive Chris Clarke to give to Ms Parisi in early 2005.

King of course is denying it existed despite ex Board Chairman saying that CEO Chris Clarke had shown it to him.

When questioned about the letter yesterday, she refused to confirm it existed, claiming the suggestion was part of a “dirty tricks” campaign. Ms King said “a search of our database shows that no such ministerial letter exists”.

“I predicted last week that a dirty tricks campaign would be launched against my husband and myself. Are you part of it?” she said in an e-mail.

Asked directly if she had written any type of letter to Ms Parisi, Ms King ignored the question, saying: “I am not prepared to continue with a charade in which you engage on a course of muck-raking under the guise of journalism – just as was predicted by me last week.”

That answer is just too cute, of course the search of the database shows that no such ministerial letter exists, does she think we are stupid. It wouldn’t have been an official letter, more like a vindictive personal note that wouldn’t have been logged at all. Just too cute by half. Note she also uses the usual Labour Party line that the journo’s are just muckraking.

Labour are under siege here, make no mistake about it. They are feeling the heat. It is simply unbelievable that a Minister of the Crown would try to bully a worker. On the other hand this is now the level of behaviour that Labour has dragged us into.

At least King’s husband hasn’t turned into a woman….oh wait!

Hawke's Bay united against Labour and Cunliffe


Mayors: We stand by sacked board – Hawkes Bay Today – 2008-03-18 17:00:00.0 – localnews

The Hawke’s Bay District Health Board scandal rumbles on. Labour thought they could “Ingram” this report, they thought wrong.

Napier Mayor Barbara Arnott said the Minister of Health was “fundamentally wrong for dismissing the board”.

She said Mr Cunliffe got what he expected from the report into conflict-of-interest claims on the board, but that won’t stop her council from pushing for a judicial review of the board’s sacking.

“Nothing has changed. His reasons [for sacking the board] are still so slight they don’t even come on the radar.

“We believe this board is no worse than any other DHB in NZ and better in many criteria.

“Let’s face it – the minister got what he expected from the report, the second report, and so did we. I am not surprised.”

The next step will be for the mayors to wait for the Health Minister to reply and then a judicial review could be held mid-2008.

The government will want a judicial review like I want cancer, right in the middle of the election year. The government hasn’t fared so well in judicial reviews so far losing all of them.

'Weasel Words'


‘Weasel words’ – The Dominion Post: local, national & world news from Wellington’s daily newspaper

The DomPost has bothered where John Armstrong hasn’t, to actually read the report and they have come to the same conclusion I have. It is nothing but weasel words.

A report on conflicts of interest at Hawke’s Bay District Health Board skirts key issues and “completely exaggerates” board failings in an attempt to clear Peter Hausmann of any wrongdoing, its former chairman says.

Kevin Atkinson, sacked with the rest of the board last month, says the “weasel word” report is a “whitewash in every sense of the word”. He urges the auditor-general to investigate.

Their editorial is even stronger.

It will be the fervent hope of Health Minister David Cunliffe and Director General of Health Stephen McKernan that the report, released yesterday, into conflicts of interest at the Hawke’s Bay District Health Board ends speculation about why Mr Cunliffe sacked the former board and appointed a commissioner to run health services in the region. It is a hope that is doomed to disappointment, writes The Dominion Post.

The editor reiterates that the DomPost has been silenced by court orders at the behest of Hausmann and the D-G of Health. Clearly they don’t believe in transparency. Annette King cops a flogging albeit by insinuation.

But given the disquiet created by the sacking of the board just 72 days after it was elected, the existence of a substantially different draft report, the contents of which the National Party has begun dripfeeding in Parliament but which The Dominion Post has been prevented from reporting by lawyers acting on behalf of the director-general of health and Mr Hausmann, and the relatively narrow focus of the inquiry, the report will not be the end of the matter.

The board was clearly remiss in its handling of conflicts of interests. Quite possibly it deserved to be dismissed. But the wider question of whether or not Mr Hausmann should ever have been appointed to the board has not been addressed. Nor has management’s role in the debacle.

Mr Cunliffe has achieved the remarkable feat of uniting public opinion in the Hawke’s Bay on a health issue, but it is not a feat for which his Labour colleagues will thank him. There is a sense of aggrievement in Hawke’s Bay and it is not a sense that will be assuaged by a report into some, but not all, the causes of the health board’s troubles.

The region has been poorly served by the board, board staff and government ministers.The only beneficiaries are the National MPs campaigning to retain the Napier and Tukituki electorates later this year.

Yes indeed, there will be few party votes for Labour this election in the Hawke’s Bay, that alone may swing the election for National. This story isn’t done yet and he next phase will be launched in parliament this afternoon.

John Armstrong hasn't read the report


John Armstrong: Decisive action well warranted – 18 Mar 2008 – Politics: New Zealand Political News, Analysis and Comment including 2008 election coverage – NZ Herald


Armstrong: DHB report should have Cunliffe doing cartwheels – 17 Mar 2008 – Politics: New Zealand Political News, Analysis and Comment including 2008 election coverage – NZ Herald

John Armstrong must have taken his talking points straight from the ninth floor in his two sycophantic articles in the Herald this morning. What is patently clear is that he hasn’t turned even one page of the report. There is no other explanation for his toadying, he would not be able to write what he has if he had just bothered to read even Section 1 and 2. If he had struggled on and managed to read sections 3 – 8 he would have been in no doubt that the report that should have been damning of Peter Hausmann was very mild though still critical.

The only way matters can be settled is for the TWO draft reports to be published so we can see just how much manipulation of the facts has been done.

The one and only thing that Armstrong has got right in both of his articles is that Annette King spoke too soon and that she is not exonerated by the report. Not that she is implicated either because the reviewers simply didn’t look into her involvement nor that of her husband Ray Lind, out of scope you see.

This is a larger and better written report than the Ingram report but an Ingram report it is nonetheless.

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HBDHB report – Part 1


The report into the HBDHB governance issues has been released and as predicted it is a whitewash, glossing over substantial conflicts of interest.

The Herald gives it a once over lightly in their coverage as does Stuff.

I am at page 8 and several questions have raised their head.

2.17 A draft report was provided to the parties’ solicitors on 23 November 2007. The Panel received written submissions on that draft in December 2007, with submissions from the Board within eight days, on 2 December.

2.18 The Panel carefully considered all submissions and continued its own deliberations and review of the evidence. This resulted in substantial changes to the draft report. Because of these substantial changes and the complexity of the review, the Panel took the unusual step of issuing a second draft report to the parties for further submissions.

2.19 Both draft reports were working documents, provided to the parties for the purpose of fulfilling natural justice requirements and enabling parties to respond to comments and views expressed in the draft reports.

2.20 As such, the views contained in the draft reports were preliminary views expressed at the time that the drafts were provided. The Panel now considers that a number of these preliminary views were wrong. Further, the view taken of the framework within which the HBDHB operates, particularly with respect to handling of conflicts of interest, has evolved into that contained in this report.

Interesting comments those.
There wasn’t one draft report there were two!
There were substantial changes to both of those.
Where are the draft reports and what are the changes?
It was unusual to issue a second draft.
The Panel got its initial view “wrong”.

How did all that happen?, we now have an unusual report into the unusual goings on at the Health Board. Not only that but the review panel was wrong? How can a review panel be wrong? The only they could have been wrong is if one or more parties got litigious on the reviews. Clause 2.20 is virtually a “mea culpa” apology. Are alarm bells ringing with you?, they certainly are where I am. To make matter worse the reviewers go to some length to explain that they were pressured and even include a butt covering statement for the minister.

2.23 The Panel received strong submissions from the parties on both draft reports.

2.24 However, it wishes to record that there has been no pressure placed on it, outside submissions by parties, to amend its report to support any particular view. In particular, it has not received any request or suggestion to do so from the Ministry of Health or the Minister (past and present). The Panel has been particularly careful to make its findings independently of the Ministry of Health and the Minister.

See how they cover Annette King as well as Cunliffe. Now why on earth would the reviewers make such statements? It simply draws attention to them by having them there.

So who did pressure the reviewers?

We also find out that apart from the previous board attempting to injunct the review, other un-named parties also tried to sue the reviewers.

2.33 As well as the difficulties already noted, the Panel has faced various Official Information Act requests, some of which were referred to the Ombudsman, threats of legal proceedings, and then the issue of proceedings by the Board to try and injunct our review. These proceedings, and the referral to the Ombudsman, were withdrawn after the appointment of the Commissioner.

Who were the people threatening to issue legal proceedings on the reviewers? It wasn’t the board else the reviewers would have mentioned that in clause 2.33 as they specifically mentioned in regard to the injunction. Who issued OIA requests?

Clearly there is much unsaid in this report and I have only reviewed Sections 1 and 2.

Union sits on Slave Labour story since October


Air NZ pay disparity Govt issue – union – 17 Mar 2008 – NZ Herald: New Zealand National news

Labour Party lickspittle union has shown what it really thinks of workers for State Owned airline Air New Zealand.

Andrew Little in trying to give a slap to the government unwittingly admitted that he has known about this issue since October last year. So much for caring about the workers huh!

Mr Little said the union did not represent international flight stewards but was tipped off about the issue with China-based flight attendants in October last year.

This is appalling considering the huge song and dance the EPMU made over the outsourcing of the engineers jobs at Air New Zealand. Now when the government needs weapons of mass distraction really rather badly the EPMU is front and centre helping the government run interference just as the Hawke’s Bay District Health Board report comes out.

And what about the strange and frankly hypocritical stance of The Stranded. For weeks they have railed on about a non-issue of John key supposedly saying that he wanted wages to drop in new Zealand, all the while their pay-masters at Labour and the EPMU has sat on a issue of essentially Slave Labour wages in one of this country’s largest employers and not a peep, not a word of condemnation. The hypocrisy is astounding. Since the story broke we have had six posts on their blog and not one about the slave workers that Air new Zealand employs out of China.

This of course is all a great big smoke screen conveniently orchestrated by Labour and its major Union backer to attempt to hide the HBDHB scandal.

HBDHB scandal becoming Labour's worst nightmare


War of words on eve of health report – New Zealand, world, sport, business & entertainment news on Stuff.co.nz

The Hawke’s Bay DHB scandal is deepening by the day with the government’s forlorn attempt to muzzle everyone concerned.

We now have calls for Annette King to stand down as her husband and Hausmann are investigated by the Police after two members of the sacked board filed a complaint.

Further Annette King is being called a liar by Kevin Atkinson after her version of the “truth” was published yesterday.

We await the report with interest, then we can compare it with the draft report (yes, copies exist)

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