Polity by Rob Salmond

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Polity: Saudi sheep: Misappropriating taxpayers' money

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  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to chris,

    ...but he does take great pride in not having
    worn or flown our flag at the match:

    Surely he had a Driver's Licence in his wallet?
    (there's another upgrade cost, over time...)

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • grant,

    I was idly browsing through my Oxford Dictionary Of Quotations last night and came across this little pearler from Oswald Mosley (English fascist leader in the 1930's):

    "I am not, and never have been, a man of the right. My position was on the left and is now in the centre of politics". (Letter to The Times 26 April 1968)

    Clearly even the exponents of the most extreme viewpoints like to be thought of as centrist.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2015 • 8 posts Report Reply

  • grant,

    Sorry all. My post above was made inadvertently. Was meant to be made at In Defence Of The Centre.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2015 • 8 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    (there’s another upgrade cost, over time…)

    Speaking of upgrades or the lack of, watch Doctor Don Brash, Shamubeel Eaqub and Professor Paul Spoonley discuss "Immigration: Are we benefiting?". Roll up and witness them munch on words for 18+ minutes. Watch as they talk up the benefits whilst managing to successfully navigate right around that elephant that is the permanent resident visa4life, which grants the holder these rights:

    The holder of any resident class visa is entitled

    – to stay in New Zealand indefinitely
    – to work in New Zealand or in the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand
    – to study in New Zealand
    – to receive free or subsidised health care at publicly funded health services.[2]
    -to free education at state-run primary and secondary schools, and subsidised fees for domestic students at private schools and tertiary institutions.[3]
    -to vote in elections (after one years’ residence).[4][5]
    -to receive a social security benefit (after two years’ residence for Jobseeker Support, Sole Parent Support and Supported Living Payment; after ten years’ residence for New Zealand Superannuation; varies for other benefits).
    -to sponsor a partner, parents or dependent children during their visa application

    Effective in perpetuity once the visa has been issued, without the visa holder being required to ever set foot in New Zealand again except when choosing to fulfill certain criteria in order to gain eligibility for specific rights; e.g. to vote in elections one must have visited the country within the last 3 years.

    Compare this to Australia:

    a Resident Return Visa (RRV) facilitates the re-entry into Australia of non-citizen permanent residents. The RRV ensures that only those people who have a genuine commitment to residing in Australia or who are contributing to Australia’s well being, retain the right to return to Australia and remain permanently.

    RRVs are usually issued with a validity of 5 years or 3 months. An RRV allows Australian permanent residents to travel from, and return to Australia as often as they wish within the validity of the visa, whilst maintaining their status as permanent residents.

    Compare this to Canada:

    When you are a permanent resident, you can live outside of Canada, but must live in Canada for at least two years in a five-year period. If you live outside of Canada for longer, you may lose your permanent resident status.

    They’re talking up increasing, or at the very least maintaing “human capital”. Though they take a couple of swipes at MP Peters, they square dance around family reunification, they shy away from Godwinstoning the conversation in that they don’t address outlying issues such as benefit fraud, tax evasion etc and the impacts these have on perceptions of productivity. It’s an adept display in sidestepping any of the immigration related issues that NZF and now I suspect Labour are not alone in anecdotally knowing to be happenstance.

    And wonder to yourself*, if New Zealand were to follow Australia’s and Canada’s lead and stop conferring these rights in perpetuity to visa holders who need not ever actually be here except to settle up as applicable, if we were to stop conferring this gimme, would we see a marked drop in immigration numbers (given a chief marketing point for our immigration industry is that we offer the cruisiest process to citizen’s rights in the western world)? Could the extra income generated by introducing a system similar to Canada’s cover the shortfall and even benefit society by ensuring that a PR visa is exclusively the domain of those wish to retain some stake in this fine country? And what exactly are the current benefits for incumbents in funding free or subsidised health care etc to those who may not actually choose to live here for any longer than it takes to acquire PR and wait for an operation?

    To be fair to the guests it was Michael Parkin leading the conversation.

    *Speaking rhetorically, as a ringmaster, of course.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    You have to live here for two years to get permanent residence now (previously, you got 'permanent' residence immediately, but it could expire if you left the country for an extended time before two years were up).

    The permanent residence system is important for migrants from countries like the Netherlands and India, who aren't allowed dual nationality by their birth country.

    We know the Aussies are a bunch of racist dicks, we shouldn't drag ourselves down to their level.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    As much as I appreciate a joke at the expense of Australia…

    The permanent residence system is important for migrants from countries like the Netherlands and India, who aren’t allowed dual nationality by their birth country.

    I’m not implying that we remove the Permanent residence system, I’m suggesting that like passports and driver’s licences, it wouldn’t be such a bad thing to rejig the system so that permanent residents are required to either be a resident (as the name suggests) here and set an expiry system requiring them to pay to renew these rights if they wish to return having not lived or paid tax here for a significant period.

    For example If there is ever any clampdown on foreign property speculation as Labour have proposed, it will be severely blunted if we find that many of these “offshore investors” are in fact “permanent residents”. This is not about turning people away, it’s about keeping them here. It’s not about Australia or Canada or India or China, I haven’t yet found another developed country that offers permanent residency in perpetuity, conferring all those rights, with no requirement for the visa holder to ever return to the country once they’ve exited. Until these rights or this system is reciprocated, I don’t think it would be too terrible to consider dragging ourselves down to the level of planet earth.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

  • chris,

    etc

    Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

    The correct terminology for full or permanent residency is indefinite leave to remain (ILR). You can apply for ILR in several ways depending upon your UK immigration status.

    ILR allows you to remain in the UK for an indefinite period, on condition you intend to remain present and settled here. If you leave the country for a continuous period of 2 years or more, it is usually deemed by the authorities that you are no longer present and settled, and you may have your ILR revoked.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Attachment

    Pin the tail on the Ass
    I see McCully was awarded an OPT* yesterday for singlehandedly destroying New Zealand's reputation for transparency and lack of corruption. Well done Muzza!

    Sadly... this is more or less true. I guess the Nats decided to sneak this gong through in a hurry, before the Auditor-General's enquiry blows the gaff on McCully's less than democratic actions.

    * Order of the Ponytail

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Alfie,

    Premature celebration...

    I guess the Nats decided to sneak this gong through in a hurry

    I see Jim McClay got one also - can we now see the full budget for promoting the vote in our favour...
    Jeez that Todd McClay is a piece of work too ain't he? - that question time absurdity earlier in the week was Kafkaesque in the extreme.

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    I see Jim McClay got one also

    Belated payback for having his Party leadership white-anted from under him back when mastodons, sorry Muldoon, walked the earth?

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    It's just as bad in the UK. The tory MP who illegally claimed over £2,000 in parliamentary expenses to have his manor house moat cleaned has just been given a life peerage by David Cameron. Labour politicians have started referring to him as Lord Moat.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    I see Jim McClay got one also

    Jeez that Todd McClay is a piece of work too ain't he? - that question time absurdity earlier in the week was Kafkaesque in the extreme

    So many McClays, thought you were talking about his father, (Roger) for a minute there

    Is Jim related?

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    is Jim related?

    Not sure, both Jim and Roger are 70…

    and to be honest I had forgotten about Roger
    and thought that Jim was Todd’s relative…
    <doh!>
    shoulda checked – but ya got my drift anyway…

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    By way of a little history, here's Jim's account of how he tried to roll the Gang of One. His little more than a year as opposition leader consisted of largely agreeing with the Lange Government while frantically trying to put out fires lit by backbencher Muldoon. Eventually he publicly challenged Muldoon to endorse him. Muldoon didn't, the other Jim (Bolger) took over, and McLay left politics at the next election.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    McLay's only major policy beef with the Lange Government was the no nukes issue. A cartoon of the time depicted him in a US sailor suit, announcing that he'd invite a nuclear-armed frigate to the upcoming Waitangi celebrations. A tattoo of the word Marcy was shown prominently on his arm, a reference to his American wife Marcy Faden, who had worked in the office of a Hawaiian congressman. When McLay was finally dumped as leader a gloating piece of graffiti appeared on a Ponsonby wall that read "Oh Marcy, how Hawaii beckons".

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Sorry if this isn't the best thread for this, but "Misappropriating taxpayers’ money" seems appropriate.

    It looks like Key's bring a cute panda to New Zealand tactic may not end well if this Fairfax story is correct. Wellington Zoo's chief executive has spoken with her counterpart in Sydney. Taronga Zoo's CEO confirmed they were "not pushing ahead with getting pandas because of the financial risk beyond the first 18 months."

    They did their own feasibility study and talked to all the US zoos which hold giant pandas. In fact San Diego Zoo tried to give theirs back to China due to ever-increasing costs, but China refused to take them, she wrote.

    "Taronga predicts [capital expense] of $23m plus ... and they predict they would be $2m per annum in the red for [operating expense] beyond 18 months."

    Fifield wrote that even baby pandas did not give the US zoos the visitor boost they expected."

    While Key might want to be remembered as the PM who bought a panda to NZ, the more likely legacy is the PM who saddled Wellington ratepayers with a whole pile of debt.

    Hey... look over there! It's a snow leopard!

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Alfie,

    I would settle for no less than a pterodactyl.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Alfie,

    Hey... look over there! It's a snow leopard!

    Heh! You might give someone ideas. In Owen Marshall's novel A Many Coated Man, set in mid-21st century NZ, there's a passing mention of feral snow leopards having been "acclimatised" and established as apex predators in the South Island high country.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    The government is still frantically trying to conceal any details of the Saudi sheep dirty deal involving millions of dollars of taxpayers' money being used to effectively bribe a foreign businessman. The chief ombudsman is investigating.

    The Stuff story opens with a remarkably clumsy line.

    Details about the deaths of New Zealand sheep sent to Saudi Arabia by the Government are refusing to be released for public transparency.

    Pardon? Are the facts of the case really requesting privacy? Does Stuff no longer employ sub-editors?

    NZTE have withheld the information on the grounds that releasing them would likely prejudice the commercial position of the subject, and they have an obligation of confidence.

    While it could be argued that most bribes carry an implication of confidentiality, this is a weak response when the issue involves the serious misuse of public money. Once again the government is using the OIA to obfuscate rather than enlighten.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Alfie,

    refusing...public transparency

    But, but, that nice Mr Key is big on transparency - see...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Mass lamb deaths, multi-million dollar bribes to an offshore businessman, a blank refusal to release the official report, McCully caught telling porkies then using redacted documents to try and pin the blame on Labour. The whole Saudi sheep thing didn't go well for the Nats, did it.

    At this point you'd probably expect any future discussion of such an embarrassing incident would be downplayed as much as possible. But no... Nathan Guy is thinking about sending more sheep.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Alfie,

    His latest attempt to explain most of the lambs dying (without releasing the report that he denied in the House that Mr Joyce has read) is pathetic:

    unfortunately there was a climatic event that occurred up there and that was combined with some illness of animals where there was some losses.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19686 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Sorry the sheep died, Mr Al-Khalaf. Our fault entirely. We should've known they were unlikely to survive in desert conditions. So here's another $2.6m of taxpayer money for... let's call it an abattoir this time, shall we? Somewhere to kill all those... er... dead sheep. And let's be clear... this is definitely not a bribe this time. No sir, no way.

    By the way, how's that free trade deal going?

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Alfie,

    Cluster flock...

    ...how’s that free trade deal going?

    yeah, nah, it's not looking so 'free' is it...

    and in an ancient coincidence another word for abattoir is
    ...a shambles!

    So... just an omnishambles happening in slow motion, huh?

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Cluster flock…

    This is getting ridiculous. This Government are taking the piss and we get to pay.Everything has been designed for no responsibility which in turns allows all Ministers to keep passing the buck or just spout crap and the response more often than not in Parliament is "Labour did it 25 years ago ,so it perfectly good for us to do it now"
    Well Labour may have had legit reasons for doing stuff 25 years ago when times were different, now it could be catastrophic.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

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