Queenstown

Listen up pansies, you are standing for public office not playing knuckle-bones with your sister

awigclm

It seems there are a bunch of pansies out there, from Colin Craig to recent local body candidates who are all crying foul?because..shock, horror, people are campaigning against them.

They all cry dirty politics. Listen up cupcakes…there is no such thing. There is just politics.

The latest cry-baby pansy pants is a candidate in Queenstown.

A high-profile Queenstown Lakes mayoral candidate has asked?police to investigate an alleged “campaign” against him, saying he has no time for dirty politics.

Businessman Jim Boult, who is on the Hawkins Group board and is a former chief executive of?Christchurch Airport, says he has laid a complaint with Queenstown police over an alleged campaign.

In a statement,?Boult said over recent weeks he had become aware of actions “which may have had the intent of?trying to influence the outcome of the election against me”.

He said he wanted?a clean race and did not have time for “dirty politics”. ? Read more »

$1b for councils to get around their own shitty credit rating

When I heard National were handing out $1b to councils, my first question was: Where the hell did Bill English find a spare billion?

The Government says councils facing dire housing shortages are “incredibly enthusiastic” about the $1 billion infrastructure development fund that’s just been announced.

It’s the latest move to tackle the Government’s most pressing problem and Prime Minister John Key says it could help create “tens of thousands” of new homes.

He announced the initiative at the National Party’s annual conference in Christchurch on Sunday.

The fund will be open to councils in areas with high population growth – Auckland, Christchurch, Queenstown, Tauranga and Hamilton.

“I’ve spoken to all five of those councils, they are incredibly enthusiastic about its potential,” Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith told reporters.

“The Government wants pace around housing.” Read more »

Can’t wait to see what Phil Twyford will say about this

I wonder what Phil Twyford’s?take on this is going to be, because?there are bugger all Chinese surnames in the Queenstown phonebook!

House prices in and around Queenstown are soaring, narrowing the price gap between Central Otago and Auckland.

Nationwide, average asking prices for houses were down last month, but Central Otago and the Waikato bucked the trend, according to new data from the Realestate.co.nz website.

The new asking prices were revealed as house supply across New Zealand was at near-record lows. ? Read more »

Sydney friendlier than Auckland?

A newspaper reports that apparently Sydney is more friendly than Auckland.

Queenstown and Auckland have made the list of the top 10 friendliest cities for 2015.

The southern city ranked number three and Auckland number nine in the annual Cond? Nast Traveler magazine Reader Choice Awards survey.

“For the third year running, we’ve asked our readers to rate a city’s “friendliness” in the Readers’ Choice Awards survey, especially with respect to where you felt welcome, or not,” the magazine’s editors wrote.

“or the third year running, we’ve asked our readers to rate a city’s “friendliness” in the Readers’ Choice Awards survey. We found out which cities greet visitors with open arms… which international cities were warm – or had a chill in the air.”

Queenstown came in behind Sydney and Dublin, with readers raving about abundant adventure activities, bars and glaciers.

[…] ? Read more »

Easter trading law review welcome, Michael Woodhouse?s farting around the edges isn?t

Between Woodhouse tinkering with the idea that Easter Trading should be up to every individual council to decide, and the unions who bleat about workers being abused and forced to work during Easter, this is shaping up to be another total winner for the government.

I?m starting to think copying the Australian Health and Safety law might have been a good idea, because letting Michael Woodhouse make up his own laws is clearly the worst option of the two.

The Government’s mooted changes to Easter trading laws have won the backing of local councils and the tourism industry.

But unions are worried about whether workers really will be able to refuse to work on Easter Sunday without giving a reason.

Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse unveiled the changes, which will give councils the power to decide whether or not shops can open, yesterday.

He says the current rules are complex and relatively arbitrary.

“The law allows certain shops selling specific items to remain open, while others must close their doors,” Mr Woodhouse said.

“It also includes several historical exemptions which allow shops in areas such as Taupo to open on Easter Sunday, while those in Rotorua cannot.”

Read more »

Faces of the day

If you can assist Queenstown police with this investigation please get in contact with your information!

This photo of Joseph Armstrong was taken in 2012

This photo of Joseph Armstrong was taken in 2012 Police have concerns for his safety

Police are investigating an alleged kidnapping in Queenstown.

Read more »

Turns out there is affordable housing, it’s just not in Auckland

There is considerable moaning from the left about the lack of affordable housing.

As I have noted many times house are affordable even in Auckland. In fact there are so many that people are forced to sell them, and if they were truly unaffordable then none would sell, but sell they do.

But there are many affordable housing options, and is just that they aren’t in Auckland.

At ?20, Stacey Knuth of Whanganui has achieved what few young Kiwis her age can still do – buy a house.

She bought a state house in Gonville, a suburb which according to September quarter housing figures has the third-cheapest housing in the country.

A far cry from Parnell or Ponsonby, a house in Gonville had a median sales price of $110,000.

And it’s in close proximity to the country’s cheapest suburb, Castlecliff, where houses this quarter went for a median $88,000.

But Gonville has another distinction. It tied with Wellington’s Brooklyn for the quarter’s highest jump in house sales, up 145 per cent on the same period last year, due in part to a clutch of state houses on the market.

Whanganui has become a bit of a poster child for declining provincial towns, but to Knuth, who is locally born and bred, Gonville is a great place to live.

“I’ve been living here for about two months now and it’s really nice, it’s a good little four-bedroom home . . . It’s a good little neighbourhood, I’ve had no trouble.

“There’s no houses in front of me and no houses out back so on a clear day you can see the mountain straight out the front and then out back you can see the sea.”

Read more »

Wait a minute, another David Cunliffe backtrack: He DID know about “NZ’s Rolf Harris”

It’s pretty hard to keep track of David Cunliffe’s position on anything these days

Mr Cunliffe admits a prominent New Zealander’s possible sexual offending had been raised with him before he met with the man in Queenstown last week.

The Labour leader says the meeting went ahead because no proof had been supplied.

“There is a suspicion that a person who asked to meet me and my candidate down there might be a person in that category. All I can say is had I known that, and we did ask around if there was any reason not to meet, we wouldn’t have had the meeting.”

The prominent New Zealander had his name permanently suppressed.

I give up.

I really do.

Is David Cunliffe even sure he is David Cunliffe? ? Read more »

Braunias does over The Cunliffe

On the same morning we hear that MPs and senior party members are doing ?over The Cunliffe via the Sunday Star Times we get a column by Steve Braunias that is as brutal as it is funny.

He continues his “Secret Diary of…” series:

MONDAY

I said to Karen, “Let’s go on holiday.” She was up the ladder, fixing a new cut-glass crystal to the chandelier. We’re forever chipping away at our do-up in Herne Bay.

She said, “Suits me, darling. Where to?” I said, “Small-town New Zealand. Someplace nice and quiet, with country values, where Labour’s message resonates with middle-income Kiwis and more vulnerable Kiwis.” I made a few bookings, packed, and we drove to the airport. It felt good to be getting away. I need a break. A lucky break, a break in the weather – any kind of break. Nothing seems to go right.

Karen said, “You did remember to bring the skis, didn’t you?” I headed back, got the skis out of the garage, and we set off again. We just made it in time to catch our 2.15pm flight to Queenstown. ? Read more »

Unfortunately Tracy there is nothing to like and even less to trust

Tracy Watkins writes about The Cunliffe and his likeability and trust issues with the electorate.

Labour leadership is a brutal job. If Helen Clark had been made of different stuff she never would have survived Opposition.

Her colleagues tried to roll her just months out from the 1996 election and with good reason.

Labour’s polling under Clark was disastrous. Support for her as preferred prime minister was laughable. Voters thought she was arrogant, aloof and out of touch.

Everything about Clark – her hair, her teeth, her mannish voice – was picked over and dissected as another reason for voters to reject Labour. They were the worst years of Clark’s life. But when a delegation of Clark’s colleagues knocked on her door asking her to resign she stared them down.

There is said to be a desk somewhere around Parliament that still bears the scars from Koro Wetere digging his fingernails into its surface during their faceoff.

The story even had an (almost) happy ending when Clark took Labour close to winning the 1996 election – though perhaps not as close as her supporters believed on the night.

It was largely thanks to Winston Peters and MMP that she was able to keep Labour’s hopes alive before Peters opted to do a deal with National. But it was enough to secure Clark’s leadership. Three years later she led Labour to a sweeping victory and nine years in power.

Is Clark protege David Cunliffe made of the same stuff?

The difference between Helen Clark and David Cunliffe is two-fold. She had balls and a spine, both things that are sadly lacking from The Cunliffe. His self doubt is immense and hasn’t been helped with former leaders knocking on his door at parliament and assuring The Cunliffe that he shouldn’t worry, the polls will come right, chin up.

Labour’s poll ratings have sunk like the Titanic under Cunliffe’s leadership.?The latest Stuff.co.nz/Ipsos political pollhas Labour marooned in the mid-20s.

Forget about winning – avoiding an old-fashioned drubbing has become the priority. Only MPs with seats in Labour bastions like Manukau seem safe.

It is not at all far-fetched to imagine Labour sinking to National’s low point in 2002 – 21 per cent.

Under that scenario the damage to Labour could be immense. Unthinkably, even finance spokesman and number two on Labour’s list, David Parker, could be at risk. So too would stars like Jacinda Ardern and Andrew Little.

The only difference between now and 1996 is the election date. When Clark’s colleagues knocked on her door in May 1996 the election was still five months away. Even if Labour wanted to change its leader now, it probably couldn’t. Voters would punish such a visible display of panic and disarray just two months out from an election. Many in Labour’s activist base would revolt.

Cunliffe was their man, their nuclear option against a caucus that did not reflect their world view. A change of leader now would bring to the surface all the things voters reject – panic, a party in disarray and disunity.

Read more »