I think that between the CAA and Brownlee's office they've pretty much dreamt up the $2k fine as a token that Something Was Done.
One of the things I wish RNZ would do would count the number of times a minister didn’t come on air when asked. Something like “since the last election the the Minister for Justice has been unavailable for interview X times”.
Or, "Since first becoming Prime Minister in 2008, John Key has never appeared on this station despite repeated invitations."
Really interesting listening to an older RNZ podcast of an interview with Mike Joy (Massey uni water scientist) who was saying that Ministry for Environment used a 10-year timeframe and declared that water quality was “stable” in most rivers (since when does ~12% of a sample constitute "most"?) when the scientifically-accepted test for quality stability wasn’t used and a longer timeframe showed, at best, statistically-insignificant levels of change that may or may not have indicated stability.
That shit could have lead to a heap of stories, probably on a number of topics, but if it did they passed me by. Nailing the government and its agencies over loose language and dodgy reporting timeframes doesn’t require any politicians to talk.
Ever noticed how eerily similar she looks to Vladimar Putin ? Put a blonde wig on him and you couldn't tell the difference.
Have you ever seen the two of them in the same room at the same time?!
Where most conspiracists fall down is a response along the lines of "That's just what 'they' want you to think" when faced with some compelling piece of official evidence that contradicts the theory.
That and the supposed ability of necessarily hundreds, if not thousands, of people to actually Keep. A. Secret!
So, Dirty Politics must be sorted. And it will be.
We hope. What, exactly, can the Privileges Committee do to MPs who misbehaved in a previous term? Particularly when the PC is going to be heavy with caucus colleagues of the MPs who are before it, and the Speaker is likely to also be from that Party.
If National were in Opposition, or at least running a proper minority government, we might get somewhere. But they're not, and they're not, so I have very little hope that we'll actually get anywhere at all. Key is not going to convene a Royal Commission that might end up finding that he knew pretty much everything about pretty much everything and lied through his teeth about it to all and sundry.
I think what has been discovered is troubling and needs setting right. The overwhelming nature of the victory unfortunately makes that less likely.
I would say that "less likely" is being generous. If I were Key, I'd be taking this result as an endorsement of the Dirty Politics school of politicking. He was quite happy enough to take his 30-point-whatever-percent of eligible-voters' votes as support for asset sales.
There will definitely be no bigger inquiry into the SIS-OIA-Slater affair, or into the Collins-Slater-Ede affair, or any of the rest of what came out in Dirty Politics. "Nothing to see here, as declared by the electorate. Move along."
I'm also worried that the Ombudsman's Office is going to get quite the squeeze in this coming term, even more so than it is currently, now that Dame Beverly has declared open season on ministerial interference in OIA responses. The Ombudsmen are our last independent inquisitor when it comes to the government, and the Office is already under significant financial pressure. Keeping on the squeeze so that citizens just stop trying to have bad government behaviour investigated looks to be a given, especially if they want to take on the Executive.
Question, Graeme: what happens about the Speaker? Carter continues on and gets replaced by someone else from National's list?
He's going to be even more unbearable and useless now that all the oversight mechanisms of Parliament are majority National.
The Herald's electorate boundary tool. It's the proposed boundaries not the final ones, but very few actually changed markedly from the proposal.
the Herald is scraping the barrels bottom today.
Child drops ice cream in supermarket
Well, not quite but news?.
a) Syndicated off APNZ, so not exactly a Herald reporter rushing in breathlessly to file copy.
b) That's a moderately sizeable spill. Would cover quite a bit of a petrol station's forecourt.