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Radio NZ: Nine To Noon – Election year interviews – David Cunliffe

26 February 2014 Leave a comment

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– Radio NZ, Nine To Noon –

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– Wednesday 25 February 2014 –

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– Kathryn Ryan –

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On  Nine To Noon, Kathyrn Ryan interviewed Labour’s leader, David Cunliffe, and asked him about coalition negotiations, policies, polls, and other issues…

 

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Radio NZ logo -  nine to noon

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Click to Listen: Election year interviews (27′ 50″ )

A major policy statement by David Cunliffe;

@ 22.00:  “We will create incentives for private employers to be certified living wage employers, who pay the living wage  to all their employees, by giving them a preference in  Crown contracts.”

This will not only support firms that pay their staff properly – but will de facto give preference to local businesses to supply goods and services!

If this doesn’t motivate Small-Medium Enterprises to switch their allegiances from the Nats to Labour, I don’t know what will!

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Nationwide Rally Against the TPPA – Day of Action!

25 February 2014 7 comments

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TPPA

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Nationwide Rally Against the TPPA

Saturday, March 29, 2014

1:00pm

(For venues, see below)

The New Zealand government is negotiating an international agreement that could have a huge effect on the lives of ordinary kiwis. It’s called the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), and it involves eleven Asian and Pacific-rim countries, including the United States. If it goes ahead, we risk damage to our innovative economy, our pristine environment, our health, and the ability to shape our own future.

Because the negotiations are being conducted in secret, what we know about the TPPA comes from leaked documents and detective work. We live in a democracy, which means we have the right to know what is done in our name and to have a say.

Come down, voice your concerns and together we can show the government that this is not acceptable.

Here’s a short video explaining the TPPA:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JwqMp1ykbW8

Confirmed speakers:

If there isn’t an event in your city yet and you want to help organise, please let us know

Events list around the country:

Auckland: https://www.facebook.com/events/454683364631627/

Wellington: https://www.facebook.com/events/228635500656767/

Christchurch: https://www.facebook.com/events/605044852899708/

Dunedin: https://www.facebook.com/events/221229231399538/

– Update –

“At a press conference yesterday, Malaysia’s Minister for International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said: ‘The draft text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) will be released to enable detailed scrutiny and public debate before any final agreement is signed.’ That would be unprecedented for Malaysia.”

Read More:  NZ should follow Malaysia lead in releasing TPPA text

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Letter to the Editor: Why should I believe John Key?

25 February 2014 1 comment

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FROM:    "f.macskasy" <f.macskasy@clear.net.nz>
SUBJECT:  Letters to the editor
DATE:     Tue, 25 Feb 2014 08:33:27 +1300
TO:      "Sunday Star Times" <letters@star-times.co.nz> 

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The Editor
Sunday Star Times

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John Key's promise not to sell any other state assets should
National be re-elected should be treated with suspicion and
caution.

Key's track record in breaking promises and "bending the
truth" is now legendary, whether it be his promise not to
raise GST (which he did) or to strengthen the Emissions
Trading Scheme (which he watered down) or, in 2008, when he
campaigned on implementing food in schools - only to resist
introducing the programme later on.

Plus he has been less than honest in describing the GCSB
Bill as "not fit for purpose" and "vague" - when it was
crystal clear in stating that the Bureau could not spy on
New Zealanders and permanent residents.

Key habitually makes promises or statements of fact which
he breaks with flimsy excuses to justify his actions.

This is not a Prime Minister who can easily be taken at his
word.

-Frank Macskasy
(address and phone number supplied)

 

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FROM:   "f.macskasy" 
SUBJECT: Letters to the editor
DATE:    Tue, 25 Feb 2014 08:18:31 +1300
TO:     "NZ Herald" <letters@herald.co.nz> 

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The Editor
NZ Herald

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John Key's "reassurance" that his government has no further
plans to sell other state assets is simply not credible.

His reputation for "bending the truth" and broken promises
is now widespread. Who can forget his promise not to raise
GST - which he broke with flippant excuses.

Or his assertions that the GCSB Act  was "vague and unclear"
- when in fact it was crystal clear in stating that the
Bureau could not spy on New Zealand citizens and permanent
residents?

Or his reference in October 2011, to a mysterious Standard &
Poors email, claiming that the ratings agency would have
downgraded NZ if Labour had been in office? Standard and
Poors immediatly rejected they made any such statement.

I have no reason to take Mr Key at his word. His reputation
precedes him.

-Frank Macskasy
(address and phone number supplied)


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FROM:   "f.macskasy" 
SUBJECT: Letters to the editor
DATE:    Tue, 25 Feb 2014 07:58:42 +1300
TO:     "Dominion Post" <letters@dompost.co.nz> 
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The Editor
Dominion Post

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John Key has announced that his government will not sell any
other state assets should National be re-elected later this
year.

It is hard to believe a Prime Minister who has made so many
promises and statements which have either turned out not to
be true; a distortion of the truth; or outright mistruths.
His broken promises such as not raising GST and raising
wages to parity with Australia have all been broken.

There is an old saying, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me
twice, shame on me".

I prefer not to be fooled a second time.

I simply don't believe him.

-Frank Macskasy
(address and phone number supplied)

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References

NZ Herald: PM: no more SOEs to sell after Genesis

Radio NZ: No more asset sales? Cunliffe doesn’t believe it

 

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referendum election

Above image acknowledgment: Francis Owen

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Radio NZ: Nine To Noon – Election year interviews – John Key

25 February 2014 Leave a comment

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– Radio NZ, Nine To Noon –

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– Wednesday 19 February 2014 –

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– Kathryn Ryan –

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On  Nine To Noon, Kathyrn Ryan interviewed John Key – a rare occasion, as Key has always avoided fronting on Radio NZ like it was political kryptonite. It must be election year.

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Radio NZ logo -  nine to noon

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Click to Listen: Election year interviews (29′ 50″ )

Blogger’s Commentary

Key began by focusing on his government’s track record (Key’s interview statements in bold blue),

“… [Our] track record’s a good one. Government’s often don’t want to necessarily point to what they’ve done over the course  of the time they’ve been in office…

We’re now one of the very few OECD countries that’s back in surplus this year. Unemployment rate’s falling. We’re growing rapidly.

It’s not just the economy, I mean you got a crime rate that’s on a 30 year low…”

Only a minute and 15 seconds into the interview, and Key was already claiming credit for “successes” that his government had very little to do with, or was mis-representing (as is his style);

1. “We’re now one of the very few OECD countries that’s back in surplus this year.”

National may well be back in “surplus” this year. But they still have accumulated a debt of  $61 billion (net). That debt has been  rising at $27 million per day, since John  Key was elected into office in November 2008. Part of that debt was fueled by generous tax cuts, in 2009 and 2010, for the top 10% wealthiest people in this country.

2. “Unemployment rate’s falling.”

A dubious claim for success. Under-employment is rising according to Roy Morgan, as well as the Household Labour Force Survey, and the Jobless rate is still 257,100.

3. “We’re growing rapidly.”

Much of which is due to the Chjristchurch re-build and  global recovery – not because of any proactive policy from National.

4. “I mean you got a crime rate that’s on a 30 year low”

Correct. Literally.  The rate of recorded offences has been steady or  trending downward since 1996 (except for a short ‘spike’ post-2008, when unemployment skyrocketed,

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Even right-wing blogger and National Party apparatchik, David Farrar on  Kiwiblog,  made a similar analysis.

So can Key really claim credit for a pattern that has either held steady or trended down? In which case, will he also claim credit for those areas where crime has been rising?

“…A lot of good gains in education…”

Really?! One and a half minutes into the interview, and Key is beginning to bullshit the audience already. In fact, New Zealand has dropped down in the OECD PISA rankings, as Sathya Mithra Ashok  wrote last December,

OECD’s PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) survey for 2012 has moved New Zealand’s performance downwards in maths, reading and science.

The country continues to score above OECD average in mean PISA scores across mathematics, reading and science (at 500, 512 and 516 respectively), even though the annualised score points have dropped by 2.5 per cent, 1.1 per cent and 2.5 per cent for each of the subject areas.

In the global rankings, New Zealand currently stands 18th in science, and 23rd in maths, a drop from previous 7th and 12th placements. Countries like Singapore, Poland and Germany rank above New Zealand and have positively increased their position since the last survey. Australia, Ireland and Denmark, despite also moving backwards, still outrank New Zealand.

Key continued,

“The second thing is, any incumbent government or any political party that wants to become the government gets elected on what they’re going to do, not always what they have done…”

That’s convenient. And yet, at every opportunity, Key, English, and other National Ministers continue to lie about Labour’s “poor economic track record”…

“And I think the last thing is just to continue to demonstrate that you’re in touch with people…”

Key certainly demonstrated how “in touch with people” he was when he arrogantly dismissed the anti-asset sales petition last year,

“Well, the numbers don’t look like they’re that significant. I mean at the moment it’s sitting at around about 40 per cent. That’s not absolutely amazing, it’s not overwhelmingly opposed. But the people who are motivated to vote will be those who are going to vote against.”

Yeah. That’s showing the peasants just who’s in charge – I mean, in touch!

“…It is always a challenge when you’re there in the Beehive and life is a little easier than for people on “struggle street”. It’s easy to get divorced from that.”

Very easy.

For example, giving $30 million to an aluminium smelter  as  a taxpayer handout – whilst denying the lowest paid workers (paid $14.61 an hour) in rest-homes a wage increase because, according to Key, the money isn’t there;

“Travel is one of those areas where we are looking at what we can do,” he told TVNZ’s Breakfast programme.

However, the Government could not afford to give DHBs the $140 million required to enable rest homes to pay their staff more.

It’s one of those things we’d love to do if we had the cash. As the country moves back to surplus it’s one of the areas we can look at but I think most people would accept this isn’t the time we have lots of extra cash.”

Other taxpayer-funded subsidies;

$1 Rugby$200 million to subsidise the Rugby World Cup.

$2 Movies – $67 million paid to Warner Bros to keep “ The Hobbit” in New Zealand and $300 million in subsidies for “ Lord of the Rings

$3 Consultants – After sacking almost 3,000  public sector workers,  National seemed unphased at clocking up a mind-boggling $1 billion paid to “consultants”.

Indeed, one can see how easily a Prime Minister can get divorced from those living on “struggle street”…

Kathryn Ryan then moved the interview on to potential “governing arrangements”. Key offered his assessment that he did not believe that Peters would support National and that “at best he is likely to abstain”.  Key said it was “time to move on” from events six years ago.

Yet, it was only three years ago that Key was quite adamant,

“I don’t see a place for a Winston Peters-led New Zealand First in a government that I lead.”

It is unclear what has changed with Key’s ‘principles’ that a man not fit to be one of his ministers only three years ago would suddenly be welcomed  as a potential coalition partner. Does “moving on” entail a 180 degree change in principles? That’s more than “moving on” – that’s a quantum paradigm shift. Not bad for 36 months.

When Key stated that “I am less convinced than others [that] he’ll [Peters] get back…”  to Parliament later this year, it was hard to tell if that was a shrewd guess on his part; wishful thinking; or a “coded instruction” to National  voters not to vote for Peters as a potential coalition partner for the Nats. Key was quite specific,

“…Nearer the time I am actually personally  keener to be a little more transparent. Now in the past we’ve been effectively transparent. I think we’ve been fairly clear about what we wanted voters to do with their electorate vote in Epsom, in Ohariu. Um, we haven’t faced the sort of Conservative issue. But my sense is, you know, we’ll be quite clear.”

Indeed, though Key seemed emphatic that there would be a “zero chance” of Peters entering a formal coalition with National, he did not close off the possibility, with this invitation for the NZ First leader,

We’ll have those discussions with him, but, you know, we’ll wait and see.”

Kathryn Ryan then broached the subject of a co-Prime Ministerial role between Key and Peters. She asked if Key “could rule out” the idea, and Key replied emphatically,

“Yeah, I can rule that out now.”

Key referred to the proposal as “mickey mouse”, and though he has flip-flopped on other issues in the past, he gave sound reasons why he seemed sincerely  dismissive of what he referred to as a “barking idea“.

Key did, however admit that  “a decent slug of the population, probably 80%” of voters supported  National or  Labour(/Greens), that a further 20% were the voting bloc that actually decided the election. As Key said,

“It’s very difficult on polling to date to predict what might happen in nine months time.”

It seems that Dear Leader is not quite so confident of winning the election as some might believe.

Key revealed that he has had no conversations with Conservative Party leader, Colin Craig.

On the issue of MMP reform and eliminating the “coat tailing provision”, Key waffled and then lamely gave his excuse why the Electoral Commission’s reform recommendations were not passed,

“In the end, there was no real concensus.”

Kathryn Ryan immediatly jumped on Key called him on that BS,

“The concensus wasn’t there because National didn’t want it! It was darn close to a concensus apart from  your Party, which is most advantaged by it!”

Key tried to weasel out of it, but he was clearly shown up as self-serving on that issue. He was defensive.

Kathryn Ryan followed up by pressing other recent issues with Key; his willingness to over-look scandals surrounding John Banks and Peter Dunne.

Kathryn Ryan asked why Key had not read the police report surrounding John Banks.

Key attempted to excuse his over-looking of the  report  by referring to the Local Body Act as being “extremely vague”. Though why he would refuse to read a report simply because a law is supposedly “vague” is a bizarre excuse. It simply makes no sense.

After all, Key called the GCSB Act “not fit for purpose”. Does that mean he did not read the Kitteridge Report that flowed from  illegal surveillance by the Bureau – because the GCSB Act was “vague”? That makes no sense.

It was a weak excuse and not one that will wash if he tries to repeat it at up-coming public election meetings. Key will be laughed at if that is the best he can come up with.

The issue of “Working for Families” was raised – and Key made a startling admission as to why it was necessary for this country to have a system that he once referred to as “communism by stealth”.

The admission he made should give all thinking New Zealanders pause for thought.

But you can bet it won’t be picked up by the msm.

Overall, it is little wonder that Key has shied away from Radio NZ. This was a serious interview and one suspects that he gave away more than he had planned.

This was not “The Edge” – but edgy it certainly was.

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References

NZ Treasury: Debt 2013

Fairfax media: Public debt climbs by $27m a day

Roy Morgan:  New Zealand real unemployment steady at 8.5% and a further 11.3% (up 2.7%) of workforce are under-employed

Statistics NZ: Household Labour Force Survey: December 2013 quarter

Statistics NZ: The numbers of justice

Kiwiblog: 2012 Crime stats

Computerworld:  OECD’s PISA survey moves NZ’s performance downwards

Fairfax media: Two-thirds of voters oppose asset sales

Fairfax media: PM: No money for aged care workers

NZ Herald: Blowouts push public Rugby World Cup spending well over $200m

NZ Herald: The Hobbit: should we have paid?

Fairfax media: Hobbit ‘better deal than Lord of the Rings’ – Key

Fairfax media: 555 jobs gone from public sector

NZ Herald: Govt depts clock up $1bn in consultant fees

NZ Herald: PM rules out any NZ First deal

Previous related blogpost

Letter to the Editor: Key responds to the asset referendum voter turnout

“It’s one of those things we’d love to do if we had the cash”

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Conflict of interest, National-style vs Labour-style

25 February 2014 Leave a comment

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conflict of interest

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Evidently, Shane Taurima’s links with Labour are a “conflict of interest“;

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TVNZ manager resigns after Labour Party revelations

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But it’s not a conflict of interest when journalists work for NationalPrime Ministers, MPs, or even become National Members of Parliament themselves,

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Maggie Barry

Maggie Barry
Radio NZ journalist and host: 1986 – 1992
News presenter, TV2, Prime TV
National Party Member of Parliament: 2011 – present

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richard griffin

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What sort of “conflict on interest” existed when Barry and Griffin were working at Radio NZ, interviewing political figures?

We don’t know.  Because their political affiliations/beliefs were not disclosed at the time.

As Maggie Barry and Richard Griffin – can we be certain that their pro-National prejudices did not unfairly impact on Labour and other left-wing political figures they interviewed?

So how is Shane Taurima any different?

Well, he is on the Left, for starters.

And, he has brown skin…

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References

Wikipedia: Maggie Barry

Radio NZ: Richard Griffin

NZ Herald: TVNZ manager resigns after Labour Party revelations

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Above image acknowledgment: Francis Owen

This blogpost was first published on The Daily Blog on 19 February 2014.

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John Banks and Winston Peters, Apples and Oranges

25 February 2014 3 comments

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If ever the media – especially journalist wonder why the public view them with disdain and minimal trust – they need only look at their behaviour when it comes to undignified media “scrums” around public figures.

The recent melee in Parliament’s halls, as journos tried to elicit a response from NZ First leader, Winston Peters, regarding his visit to Kim Dotcom’s mansion – was a less than edifying spectacle,

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Video - PM accused of spying on Peters

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Evidently, the Press Gallery were a bit “miffed” at Peters’ curt responses to them and refused point blank to answer their questions. So in response to Peters’ lack of response, NZ Herald reporter,  Audrey Young, wrote a “revenge piece” for her paper,

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Audrey Young - Winston Peters resists excellent questions

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A “revenge piece” being something a journo will put together to present the subject under discussion in a less-than-positive light. That’ll teach him/her/them not to co-operate with the Fourth Estate!

Apparently really, really annoyed, Young  wrote,

“We don’t recall Peters suggesting John Banks’ visits were a private matter.”

This was echoed by “Claire” (Claire Trevett?),

“Do you think John Banks didn’t need to tell us whether he had gone out there or not, or whether his privacy was breached when Dotcom said he had been out there?”

Ok, let’s get one thing straight here; Winston Peters is not being accused of accepting donations from Kim Dotcom, nor attempting to hide said donations in a falsified electoral return.

If indeed that is what “Claire” and Audrey Young are suggesting, then let’s have it out in the open. Make the allegations and ask the questions.

But comparing John Banks’ dodgy “hide-the-cheques” shell-game is in no way comparable to a politician meeting a citizen (or permanent resident, in this case). That is not journalism – that is just downright immaturity on a school-yard level. It is pettiness.

It certainly ain’t journalism.

Disclaimer: I am not a NZ first supporter. Never have been, and most likely, I never will be.

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References

TV1: Winston Peters: Spies watched me meet Dotcom

NZ Herald: Audrey Young: Winston Peters resists excellent questions

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election 2014

Above image acknowledgment: Francis Owen

This blogpost was first published on The Daily Blog on 17 February 2014.

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Coming up on Radio NZ: Party Leader interview with David Cunliffe

24 February 2014 Leave a comment

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Radio NZ logo -  nine to noon

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9:05am Tuesday 25 February

David Cunliffe

Labour leader David Cunliffe is in the hot seat in the second of Nine to Noon’s election year, scene-setter interviews. Kathryn Ryan asks Mr Cunliffe what Labour needs to do to gain traction in the polls to prevent National from gaining a third term in office and his policy priorities.

On Nine To Noon, Radio NZ.

 

 

 

 

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