Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The Honours

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  • recordari,

    He got the equivalent in 2004 and was one of the few to turn down Key's knighting last year - not surprising considering the backdrop of The Trowenna Sea is our shameful colonialist history.

    Now you mention it, I do remember that. Bit slack on doing my homework. Interesting to compare what was thought/said at that time with what has resulted from the TS debacle. But this debate has been exhaustively covered, so my apologies for dragging it up.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Scott A,

    To add insult to injury, it's Sir Doug, for services to business and the community.

    Well, the National Party is part of the community, one guess.

    But this is all small beer. Sir Jean-Luc? Make it so!

    The wilds of Kingston, We… • Since May 2009 • 132 posts Report Reply

  • Glenn Pearce,

    my unkind feelings towards Mr Myers stem somewhat from an opinion piece he once wrote for the Herald

    Over 10 years ago Russell. Turn the page ;-)

    Auckland • Since Feb 2007 • 499 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    We've just got to create an environment here where people want to stay here and live here and be part of New Zealand - and yet still be part of the world.

    It is the total smug arrogance and hypocricy of the man that gets me.

    If he lived in Chile, enjoyed taking the salute at military marchpasts and liked showing off his collection of Pinochet memorabilia before launching into a denouncement of creeping socialism in New Zealand then at least his comments might have the virtue of honesty.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2212 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH,

    But this is all small beer. Sir Jean-Luc? Make it so!

    Wil Weaton's response to that was "we'll have to call him Sir Old Baldy"

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Raymond A Francis,

    The headlines for the honours piss me of and always have
    It is not till you go through the so called lower orders and see good people being rewarded for years of work that it makes sense

    45' South • Since Nov 2006 • 576 posts Report Reply

  • Just thinking,

    Can we agree create a new term, from the root word "titular" and just use "tit" or "non-tit"?

    Putaringamotu • Since Apr 2009 • 1158 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Litterick,

    On Summer Noelle this morning, Myers claimed responsibility for Gnarls Barkley. Perhaps this is his service to the community.

    All together now: "I am the man, the very fat man, who waters the workers' beer."

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1000 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Over 10 years ago Russell. Turn the page ;-)

    Or as Doug would have it. Toil that field, peasant...

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4310 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Myers claimed responsibility for Gnarls Barkley.

    I'm intrigued. Can you elaborate?

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Can we agree create a new term, from the root word "titular" and just use "tit" or "non-tit"?

    I'm of the opinion that anyone who feels the need to append the word Sir to their name after receiving an honour should be obliged to change their first name to Dick.

    Beyond the fact that as a New Zealander abroad, it gave Australians another (brief, before they forgot) reason to poke fun at NZ, I don't care either way whether whether someone feels that they need to use the title. It just seems particularly vacuous (as was the reinstatement by Key and the reasons given at the time, albeit with a self serving shine on the edge).

    Although I guess Dougie getting the royal touch on the shoulder may be as good an argument as it gets for not reinstating the titles.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3283 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    ...he declared that libraries were not a public good, and that it was of no benefit to him that some poor bastard read a book.

    If my memory serves, neither does Bob Jones -- then again, he's a rather keen reader who goes out and buys everything he reads, so he's doing a considerable service to a bookseller somewhere.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    It is not till you go through the so called lower orders and see good people being rewarded for years of work that it makes sense

    Totally agree.

    And to answer Hilary's question, there are a couple of people listed who (assuming that standard stereotypes apply in the honours process) seem likely to be involved in providing disability services - can't really tell from the vague wording and I do not personally recognise the names:

    - Mary Elizabeth Theresa Johnson, Auckland, for services to the deaf community.

    - Margaret Ann Seabrook, Wanganui, for services to the visually impaired community.

    Other than that, I don't see or know any who are furthering disabled community interests - let alone those who are disabled and contributing in other fields. Those two women might even fit in all three categories for all I know..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Just noticed Idiot/Savant's headline - "For services to his own bank balance". Heh.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    Sacha, thanks. I always mean to nominate people but you have to do it so early - by the beginning of February for the Queens Birthday honours - that I forget. But those who I would nominate would probably not get through Cabinet which can veto them.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3196 posts Report Reply

  • TracyMac,

    And just to riff off "investing" in the stock market... the point of that glorified casino was originally to allow companies to raise capital for expansion. Jonathan's and Garraway's coffee shops was where merchant shippers convened with prospective investors to get the money to send their fleets off into the semi-known. So you either lost everything, or you got fabulous returns when the fleet you invested in came back laden with slaves/opium/spices/tea. These coffee shops and 'Change Alley eventually became the LSE.

    The stock market was used as a substitute for raising the required capital from banks. In places like Germany and Switzerland, the banks actually did take on the role of providing venture capital, and that explains why their economies have historically been more resistant to shocks brought about through people finally getting the wibbles about their speculation.

    The stock market has also become more problematic because the interval of stocks being considered to be long-range investments has been undermined by the "dividends before all" mentality. Firing all your employees and off-shoring is excellent for your stock prices and dividends; it's not exactly proven whether it's better in the macro-economic sense.

    So, yeah, if I had a ton of cash, the stock market is the last place I'd "invest" it. There's the risk factor, but there's also the aspect that isn't functioning the way it was supposed to function, as a way of contributing to a company's capital in order to reap profits from what the company produces (not dividends squeezed out through market manipulation and screwing your employees and customers).

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 701 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Litterick,

    I'm intrigued. Can you elaborate?

    Myers has a son in the music business and apparently financed "Crazy."

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1000 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Litterick,

    I/S reminds us that ACT "demanded a position on the Honours and Appointments Committee as part of their Confidence and Supply Agreement." These people bring a whole new meaning to the word "transparency." They are transparently crooked.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1000 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Myers has a son in the music business and apparently financed "Crazy."

    Unless his son is Jeff Antebi, who certainly has the means and contacts to finance Danger Mouse's projects, I'd be inclined to think he's fantasizing some..or being fed a line.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3283 posts Report Reply

  • recordari,

    In places like Germany and Switzerland, the banks actually did take on the role of providing venture capital, and that explains why their economies have historically been more resistant to shocks brought about through people finally getting the wibbles about their speculation.

    While I agree with the sentiments about the Stock Market, where the concept of 'Maximising Shareholder Value' has pretty much ruined the integrity of many a would be worthwhile 'public' company, this particular mess we're in is due largely to those banks, not the Stock Exchange.

    With many US and European banks in particular having Debt to Equity ratios under 10%, or in the negatives, based on speculative property values, or fly-by-night venture capital, I'd be equally reluctant to invest there. While 'our' banks (Aussie, Aussie, Aussie!) might be better, or at least easier to provide Government Guarantees for, it is not by much. Kiwibank and TSB? Well they're rare birds, and we don't speak ill of them.

    One of the few investments that has withstood all this is precious metals, and while I can't quite get my head around the god-like inherent value in a shiny piece of metal, that may only be because I don't have any.

    Of course the only remedy for all this greed driven excess is some form of regulation on this otherwise free-market. But those 'Knights of the Round Table' would have something to say about that.

    Fortunately, unless they are hidden by 'Services to business', there are no bankers on the list. That would be a bit rich...

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Bruce Thorpe,

    Anybody know particulars of why a gong for Julian Robertson?

    Hokianga • Since May 2007 • 51 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Anybody know particulars of why a gong for Julian Robertson?

    Didn't he donate twenty grand to one of the drug rehab centers? for some reason...

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4310 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    If this is what earns a knighthood, then Terry Clark was allegeable, until he dropped dead in prison. It would be naive to assume that the Knights and Dames are in any way more honorable than the rest of us.

    Knights or Dames (formerly Distinguished Companions)

    For pre-eminent contribution in any field achieving at a national or international level, recognised by peers and demonstrating sustained commitment.

    (Herald article)

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4310 posts Report Reply

  • TracyMac,

    @ recordari - Yes, I should have said "up until the 90s, German banks...."

    The Swiss banks aren't a great example, to be sure, especially how they got their big boost in the 40s. :-( But the German banks were closely aligned to provincial and federal government in terms of business lending schemes and underwrote businesses from the small to the huge. Of course, they all got a bit more "entrepreneurial" in later years.

    As for precious metals, yeah, it's just a bit too close to the idea that money is only worth what we agree it to be. Fondling gold coins is a little bit too close to cowrie shells to my liking. I suppose they both look pretty if the global financial system crashes, and people have a superstitious belief in the "value" of gold. More than they would in the value of EFTs or paper money, if it comes to the End Times. Heh.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 701 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    I/S reminds us that ACT "demanded a position on the Honours and Appointments Committee as part of their Confidence and Supply Agreement." These people bring a whole new meaning to the word "transparency." They are transparently crooked.

    United Future and the Maori Party also have people on the committee.

    And why would we assume that ACT wanted the seat on the Committee for its role in honours, rather than it's role in appointments? The Honours and Appointments Committee is also the one that oversees government appointments to boards of SOEs etc.

    Among ACT's policies before the election (and long-time complaints during the course of the Labour Government) was one about meritless political appointments to boards - particularly those of SOEs, and other boards of commercial significance (e.g. the Reserve Bank). It thinks that government businesses should be run the same way as "real" businesses - by businessmen.

    ACT doesn't really believe that businesses (government or otherwise) should be run in the community interest (or rather, it believes that running them with a strong profit motive is running them in the community interest), and it wants to do what it can to ensure that Government appointments are merit-based.

    It's just that its definition of merit may well differ from that of many here. I am quite confident that ACT's interest in the Honours and Appointments Committee is all about the appointments and little to do with honours.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

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