Posts by Tom Semmens

  • Hard News: We're in this together,

    For all that we revere Michael Joseph Savage, it is worth recalling that he not only nationalised all radio, he personally vetted the news radio put to air.

    Our radio are so much more independent these days, they don't need the PM to write their copy for them.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Some reprehensible bullshit,

    The so-called Taxpayers Union calling for recall elections is hardly surprising given that the Auckland political right – an odious assorted bunch of creeps that includes the core of the dirty politics brigade with the likes of Cameron Slater, Dick Quax, Cameron Brewer, and Carrick Graham, plus most of the right wing business establishment and a pile of fellow travelers at the Herald – have never accepted Len Brown as mayor and have considered him an unsuitable upstart from the third world of Manakau from day one of his mayoralty. The whole Palino sponsored Bevan Chaung “scandal” was a straight-out attempt to subvert the last election result, which should show how short the right’s patience is becoming.

    Eventually, if the Auckland right can’t win an election they will try and engineer a “crisis” and get their National party mates in Wellington to appoint a commission to run the city. I guess this sort of beat-up story is part of the building blocks of that sort of campaign to create an atmosphere of crisis and financial mismanagement. It also means Len Brown cannot run again. If he did, the vileness, hysteria and character assassination of the man would reach unbelievable heights, and if he still managed to win, the Auckland right would try and make the city ungovernable to provoke a “crisis” that would “require” Brown’s removal by by John Key.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Park Life,

    Agreed that it is a scandal that public land has a private club on it, but why develop it at all? Unitec is busy planning to tarmac over as much of it’s site as it can, converting this space into a public park and linking it to Western Springs somehow would roughly double the green space to around 65 hectares, or alternatively give a Western Springs sized park on the other side of an area bisected by the North-Western motorway.

    Maybe we need to stop the impetus to a greed-driven stampede to property development whenever a bit of green space is spotted…

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Incomplete, inaccurate and misleading,

    Extraordinary how not one cheer-leader on this site…

    Succeed in politics and you have many enthusiastic fathers crowding about. Fail and you are that sad, forgotten orphan sitting on the step outside in the rain.

    Besides, the failure of Cunliffe was an error in judgment, not in intent. We still have just one intent, and we’ve got a shiny new cannon.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Incomplete, inaccurate and misleading,

    Little’s perforamnce in the house could be better… …Little has to avoid being Mr Shouty.

    Oh for goodness sake. I tell you what, let’s make Jesus leader of the Labour party because it seems that is what it will take to please some people.

    Little’s performance in the house yesterday was the best we’ve seen from an opposition politician in over six years and the best from a Labour leader since forever. I found myself clapping my hands in glee, we are finally giving it back to those arrogant and pompous pricks on the government benches.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Incomplete, inaccurate and misleading,

    Has an unelected, clearly mentally unbalanced individual who has never held a a significant public office or credible public role ever had such an effect on a supposedly advanced first world democracy? What on earth possesses Key to keep talking to Slater? Why does our media continue to provide such a compulsive and delusional liar airtime? Why is it I am not sure if my last sentence applies to Slater, Key or both of them?

    Anyway, to be serious for a second Slater’s paranoid delusions – thinking people are conspiring to kill you is usually the preserve of inmates of the secure wing of the Mason Clinic – is the stuff of mass shooters.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Incomplete, inaccurate and misleading,

    The thing that shocks me the most is the way Key outsourced his relationship with the SIS – of which he was the responsible minister – to a politically ppointed National party hack (De Joux). It sounds all to typical of a government whose ambient values are contemptuous of public service convention and democratic accountability.

    The thing that astonishes me the most is how comfortable all Key’s apologists are with that. I can only assume David Farrar will now be totally comfortable when prime minister Little allows Matt McCarten to independently get the SIS to trawl back through every email David Farrar ever exchanged with John Key and then get Bomber Bradbury to selectively OIA and publish them in a way that casts him in the worst possible light.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Incomplete, inaccurate and misleading, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    Slater emphatically denies this….

    Slater has denied quite a lot of things, denials that later turned out to be straight lies.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: News from home ...,

    Quality leadership requires the taking of some decisions because they are necessary in spite of their unpopularity.

    I bet you’d make the trains run on time to. The idea that rule by a technocratic elite making “quality” decisions based on some sort of detached rational criteria is somehow superior to the rough wisdom of the commonweal as delivered by the ballot box is an unfortunate one, but it is widespread amongst certain classes.

    Democracy does not concern itself with “quality” leadership in your rather Robert A. Heinlein sense. It concerns itself with who gets the most votes, with whoever gains the most votes automatically being of the highest “quality” by virtue of the act of winning. It follows then that forcing through unpopular decisions makes those decisions by definition “bad quality” in a democracy, whether or not some technocrat thinks them necessary.

    The political reality of a democracy though is a party puts forward a mix of policies for the voters to peruse, a curates egg of some popular, some less so popular and some pigs, hidden at the back with lip stick and a tutu on to hide it’s porcineness. It then claims the democratic mandate of victory to implement this mix. Going to the voters pushing a hoary old squealer as one of your flagship policies is not “quality leadership” in a democracy. It is stupid leadership designed to ensure you always lose.

    After all, you always campaign on the tax cut, not on how you plan to pay for it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: News from home ...,

    but it would be a bit odd ditching an orthodox policy like CGT because it was too strange and challenging for voters

    Little hasn't said a CGT is too strange or challenging for voters. He said that effectively Labour lost the argument and keeping it as a policy would continue to keep it as an albatros around their neck and alienate the swing voters Labour need to get back into power. All he is doing is applying Colbert’s dictum – seeking to pluck the feathers that make the geese squawk least. Anyway, there are more ways to kill a cat than choking it with cream. Ruling out a CGT doesn't mean you've ruled out a land tax, for example. Good politics is listening to the people and and noisily dumping the CGT, whilst waiting for the Friday before Xmas to quietly announce a land tax in terms most cub reporters still at work won't understand, then never mentioning the topic again.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1825 posts Report Reply

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