Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Don Paul

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  • rodgerd,

    A right laugh... unless you were one of the people assaulted, one of the people responsible for explaining to the commuters why services wouldn't be running because of vandalised trains, or one of those commuters...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    "The driest thinker condemned by the wettest urge." - poetry I tell you

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 1958 posts Report Reply

  • Gareth Ward,

    Such cuts would have delivered massive windfalls to the rich. But, argues Brash, they would also strengthen incentives for hard work.

    Possibly the wrong site to be asking this on, but have been looking for a while for documented evidence of this "lower top tax rates incentivising hard work". I understand the theories of marginal income etc, and can see how it may have an impact on secondary/part-time employment but does anyone know of a study that actually suggests what the national impact would possibly be? i.e. what growth we would expect?
    Even Treasury having a "we expect incomes to grow by x% over the next x years, therefore evening out the initial tax take loss" type of stuff...
    I just want a view on the actual numbers behind it (of course it didn't exactly go swimmingly for Reagan huh)

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1712 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    Well one example if you like is the US federal tax system where marginal rates go up to 33% then drop back to 28% somewhere near $200k+ - their idea is that the 33% hump fills in the lower progressive rates below $100k effectively giving a flat tax for the rich and a progressive one for the poor (er, not so rich) - of course the US has so many tax avoidance boondoggles that this is all kind of moot

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 1958 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I suppose the sensible thing would be to disapprove of the antics of thousands of Londoners making the most of the last night of drinking on public transport -- the new mayor, Boris Johnson, has banned it -- but, 17 arrests notwithstanding, it looks like it was, for the most part, a right laugh.

    Sorry for getting rather po' faced here, Russell, but I've got to agree with rodgerd. Some of us don't use public transport as a political statement or lifestyle choice, and being stuck on a train full of drunks is just fucking scary.

    And perhaps I'm entirely biased, considering who my partner works for, but someone should do a reality check on the level of verbal abuse rail staff get when services or delayed or cancelled, or carriages don't magically clean themselves.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11614 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    About 1986 I found myself at some show at Phil Warren's Ace of Clubs above Cook Street. I'd been out on the town with Peter Urlich & Mark Phillips and was a little, um, under the weather.

    At the back of the room was Shane and I wandered over. We'd never met and I sat down and, fumbling my words, told him how much he'd meant to me in the late sixties. As a kid I was a huge fan and told him so. He thanked me and we talked for a while, but whether it was the wine or him, I was at a bit of a loss for words and excused myself.

    Over the years I've met dozens of so called popstars, some pretty big ones, but that's the only time I felt a little overawed.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3184 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Craig, yes but to be fair, having travelled on the night buses many times over the years, they were as often as not, a fairly positively spirited party and quite a London institution.

    But for all that, there was nothing less pleasant than a bunch of cider swilling skinheads on the tube after an away game.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3184 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen,

    Gareth, *possibly* the Treasury-commissioned McLeod report on tax would have the info you're looking for - it was done in 2001, but was ignored (basically recommended ACT tax policy I think).

    Auckland • Since Apr 2008 • 47 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen,

    Acutally think it was a 'review', not a report.

    Auckland • Since Apr 2008 • 47 posts Report Reply

  • John,

    The Brash story is quite revealing particularly his statement.:-
    '"I could have made some announcements unilaterally if you like, which I chose not to."

    In contrast, he says his successor John Key understands the strength stratospheric polls give him. Key has "made a few statements as leader which I strongly suspect haven't been through the whole party process".
    Is Key still relying on the great Nat strategist M. McCully together with English & Brownlee. One backbencher, who appears to be quite a smart lady, was certainly not in the loop last week.

    Auckland • Since Dec 2007 • 21 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    In contrast, he says his successor John Key understands the strength stratospheric polls give him. Key has "made a few statements as leader which I strongly suspect haven't been through the whole party process".

    Its a pity Brash didn't expand on this - I'd be fascinated to hear his examples of 'Key unplugged'. I guess the recent volte-face on Kiwisaver could have been a unilateral decision but everything else the National leader has come out with has struck me as pretty safe, focus-grouped poll-tested stuff.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 894 posts Report Reply

  • Gareth Davidson,

    <sigh> Londoners get one last opportunity to drink on the tube, and according to the Guardian's photos so many of them choose to do so with Fosters...

    Sydney • Since Mar 2007 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Craig, yes but to be fair, having travelled on the night buses many times over the years, they were as often as not, a fairly positively spirited party and quite a London institution.

    Oh hell, yes. I had some great laughs upstairs on the night buses.

    But for all that, there was nothing less pleasant than a bunch of cider swilling skinheads on the tube after an away game.

    It did improve a lot in the late 80s, whether it was acid house or whatever, but yeah, the best approach if a Tube train full of football supporters in their colours pulled in to the platform was generally to wait for the next one.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17941 posts Report Reply

  • underscore_b,

    An intriguing interview with Brash there, especially his apparent vindication of Hager:

    The book, he says "was at least an honest attack".

    Compare this with his newsletter from December 06, 2006:

    "...a scurrilous attack on both the National Party as an institution and me as its Leader.

    From the same newsletter:

    Hager never lets the truth get in the way of a good conspiracy theory. He has used information very selectively, apparently modified some of the emails he has obtained, and drawn conclusions which are, in many cases, quite absurd.

    It seems to me that Laugeson has come as close to an admission of guilt as anyone is going to get. Your thoughts?

    Since Jun 2007 • 18 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    DON BRASH is fighting his emotions. His voice crumbles, his eyes brim with tears.

    He is telling the story of a "profound" old Labour Party minister who once advised an aspiring political candidate don't do it. Don't enter parliament.

    "He said, `when you start you've got all these principles. And in the political process, you have to hide some of them'.

    "So you put them in to a box, like roses," says Brash. There is a very long pause. He looks away, and sniffs.

    "And when you open the box. They're dead.

    Is this a Sunday Star Times story, or a Womens Weekly dribble? Wah wah wah.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6145 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Is this a Sunday Star Times story, or a Womens Weekly dribble? Wah wah wah.

    That descriptive passage is the key to the rest of the profile. If you're saying it shouldn't be there, you're wrong.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17941 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen,

    Well he had to say that in 2006, seeing as he was a party leader...someone should ask him why they differ so much though.

    Auckland • Since Apr 2008 • 47 posts Report Reply

  • Mark Thomas,

    Is this a Sunday Star Times story, or a Womens Weekly dribble? Wah wah wah.

    LOL! I just tried picturing Helen Clark, ex-PM, doing the same "personal" interview...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    That descriptive passage is the key to the rest of the profile. If you're saying it shouldn't be there, you're wrong.

    Oh it fits with the story. It's the way of writing. "His voice crumbles, his eyes brim with tears." Feels more Mills & Boon than a leading NZ newspaper. Talk about painting him as a completely wet bus ticket.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6145 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Is this a Sunday Star Times story, or a Womens Weekly dribble? Wah wah wah.

    Oh, it's a fucking feature not a front page news lead Kyle. Not really my cup of tea, but infinitely preferable to when the supposed "wet impulses" (and you get serious icky point for that, Russell) of Brash and Helen Clark's beard were considered news by that paragon of journalistic values.

    LOL! I just tried picturing Helen Clark, ex-PM, doing the same "personal" interview...

    Oh just you wait, Mark. I'm fairly confident we're going to get all the 'Helen Clark nobody knows" our roiling stomachs can handle, as soon as she's got a stupefying tedious tell-all memoir to shill.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11614 posts Report Reply

  • underscore_b,

    Well he had to say that in 2006, seeing as he was a party leader...someone should ask him why they differ so much though.

    I wouldn't be surprised if Laugeson actually did ask him that - and I'd be even less surprised if he declined to comment further. The whole tone of the interview is confessional though, and I suspect that's as far as Brash could go on record without discrediting the party a la Scott McLellan.

    Kyle: I think it's important to note that he didn't have to give an interview at all, and there's little for him to gain from it other than a salved conscience. It's framed as a character portrait, but there's some very, very interesting nuggets of information in there as I've mentioned above. There's a lot to be said for reading between the lines... :D

    Since Jun 2007 • 18 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen,

    Maybe a book much, much later then...can only hope.

    Auckland • Since Apr 2008 • 47 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    I'm not sure who got assaulted - but the fact that the Met arrested somebody for assault doesn't mean there was one. Also, while I'm sure most railway workers are nice people, I remember an incident when I was a teenager when a mate of mine was cheeky to a ticket inspector and got punched. He complained and the guy was prosecuted but *not sacked*.

    In the 10 years I lived in London and travelled on the tube, I was never hassled by people drinking. There were a few derros burbling around, as they do, but no real aggression.

    I reckon this ban is another example of people not extending tolerance to the mildly annoying.

    But if you want evidence that the UK is a police state, consider this story - they've confiscated 7000 safety deposit boxes and expect people to prove they've obtained the contents legally before giving them back. "Prove your innocence, citizen" or what? Or this one - police have arrested 183 children over their postings on Bebo.

    Maybe the party is the start of people kicking back - like the Brixton riots, but fluffier.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4210 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    There's a lot to be said for reading between the lines... :D

    Indeed. Parlour psychoanalysis often provides delicious case studies in projection and various forms of confirmation bias.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11614 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    I'd be fascinated to hear his examples of 'Key unplugged'

    The anti-smacking bill would be up there, I'd suggest.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 2969 posts Report Reply

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