Friday, December 09, 2005

No Rhetoric please, We're New Zealanders

American Taliban?
So they must be stoning people to death in the streets, amputating dissenters, blowing up non-Christian religious treasures, banning sport, music, film and televison and providing safe haven for terrorist organisations.
No, not quite, A professor got beaten up by a couple of idiots and some Christians wrote to a company complaining about advertising in a gay magazine.

Homophobic bigots?
Oh please, just because one has the belief that a "marriage is between a man and a woman" does not make them a homophobe. Some homosexuals are against gay marriage, does this make them homophobic too? Yes the bill was pointless and ridiculous but just because one has a difference of opinion does not neccessarily make them Fred Phelps or the re-incarnation of the Tailban.

To use such ridiculous rhetoric makes you no better than those you are arguing against.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Up ya nose with a Rubber Hose


To be honest, I've never had much love for David Benson-Pope, with the nap-time in question-time and of course he has a hypenated surname which as everyone knows is a sure sign of a tyrant.

But seriously, it now looks like Benson-Pope would have been better off if the Police had laid actual charges over the affair. He would have recieved a fair trial in a court of law, as opposed to trial and immediate conviction by the tv and print media and at the very least it would have legally prevented DBP from putting his foot (or tennis ball) in his own mouth with his dismal attempts at trying to manage fallout from the report.

The seemingly endless police report gives the oppostion MPs leading the attacks endless amounts of shit for them to roll around in. I'm sure they'll look back fondly on this day as a high point in the parliamentary careers.

Apart from those with an axe to grind, the general public doesn't give a toss about the whole affair, and this is hardly the sort of thing that is going to give any boost in support for National or ACT. The next time a National MP complains about police "wasting time" doing traffic duty or operating speed cameras all one has to do to is point towards this 1000-page report about supposedly over-zealous corporal punishment that happened 23 years ago.

Benson-Pope will end up having to resign his cabinet post not because of anything Judith Collins or Rodney Hide say, it will be as a direct result of his total incompetence at crisis management.

And sitting quietly in the corner, avoiding any media scrunity is Taito Philip Field who faces allegations that if proven are far worse than anything DBP has supposedly done 23 years ago.
Perhaps Benson-Pope should give him a call for advice on how to shut up.

Monday, December 05, 2005

National MP to cut Education - literally

Allan Peachey is deep trouble for making a not-so veiled threat in response to a request by the co-principal of Selwyn College for the local MP to make an appearance at the school's annual prizegiving.
Tacked on to the end of the email rejecting the request were the words
Yes, I do have a knife in your back, so be careful
It's easy to see why Peachy holds a grudge against a school so radically different from his Rangitoto College - Selwyn is a 'liberal' school with no school uniform and a strong focus on multi-culturalism and the arts. However in his new role as the MP for Tamaki he is supposed to the electorate's representative and advocate in parliament. Former Tamaki MP Clem Simich would never have shown such contempt for a local school.

This is shocking and childish behaviour, here's hoping Don Brash (also a Tamaki local) can display some leadership for once and strongly censure Peachy for this inappropriate behaviour.

Anyone who values secondary school learning that isn't the "McEducation" Peachey espouses should hope to god that he never becomes Minister of Education.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Norm Hewitt has a dream

Reformed Thug turned Lap Dancer Norm Hewitt has put the Air New Zealand man v. child seating controversy into the proper context it deserves.

According to big Norm the 'discrimination' men face on airlines is just like that of Black Americans in the 1950s and 60s. Mark Worsley, New Zealand's Rosa Parks apparently.

Before the wails of protest from the 'PC brigade' begin just remember that for centuries New Zealand men have been treated as second class citizens.

After male slavery was abolished nearly 100 years ago, sexual discrimination became regulated by 'Jim Crow' laws, which allowed strict segregation of the sexes under the premise of 'separate but equal'.

Males and Females were forced to use separate schools, theaters, public toilets, bus, airplane and restaurant seating. In some locales, such as Dargaville, it was forbidden for stores or restaurants to serve different genders under the same roof.

Through the use of "Miscegenation" laws men and women were often prevented from legally marrying to prevent 'gender-mixing' - many of these laws still remain in place today. Even now in the 21st Century men often have trouble enrolling to vote due to female officals requiring the often poorly educated men to pass a literacy test before their enrolment is accepted. Due to this and other unsavoury tactics, in some parts of the country the percentage of eligible men enrolled to vote is less than 10%.

The time has come for this discrimination to end, as a NZ male I'm glad our own Martin Luther King Jr. - Norm Hewitt has the courage to stand up and fight to end this injustice once and for all.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Ministry of Silly Voices

Pious moral outrage is growing at David Cunliffe's mocking of Pansy Wong's use of the English language.

(Interesting fact - in Cantonese 'Pansy Wong' means 'token deadweight').

Apparently mocking Ms. Wong's voice is "racism", sure, it's rude and disrespectful but it's not racist. Or did I miss the memo where the defintion of rascism was changed to "making fun of any characteristic of a non-white person"
Perhaps I'm going on a limb here but she does actually have an accent that can often make it very difficult to understand what she is actually saying.

(Interesting fact #2 - David Lange commenting on a bungy jump made by Wong from Auckland's Skytower - "Why did they tie a rope to her?")

Making fun of the way people speak is a wonderful tradition in New Zealand politics, I remember fondly when Jim Bolger would impersonate the accent of foreign leaders. And who can forget John 'Hone' Carter's calls to talkback radio, they were good times.

I want consistency from our representatives, not only accent, but all personal traits of MPs should be up for mockery in the house - be it George Hawkins' stuttering, Margaret 'Hopalong' Wilson's gait or Gerry Brownlee's rolls of chubby fat. My dream is that one day we shall have a NZ where everyone is mocked in a cruel and unfair manner equally.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Buried Agenda

TVNZ has all but killed off it's sole remaining current affairs show with the announcement that One Owen will take over presenting duties from Simon Dallow next year. This pretty much confirms Dallow will be the new 'mother of the nation' and read the 6pm news in '06. From what we've seen of Lisa Owen's time as European correspondent the past two years, it's safe to say you won't be missing any hard-hitting interviews by sleeping in on Saturday mornings.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Herald's journalism shitty, says blog

Let's all jump aboard the Bash Winston Train!
It's the Magical Diversion Tour!
Lefties, Righties, it don't matter- we're in this together!
Screw context! Balance and fairness can go and take a flying leap,
Sure, if we'd taken a quote out of context from Clark or Brash, twisted it and then splashed it triumphantly over the front page, they'd be screaming "Liberal/Conservative Media Bias!" from the top of the hills.
But this is totally different, it's Winston Peters and he must pay for disrespecting 'da family'.
Who really wants to hear about Clark barely holding together a workable Government or Brash's imminent leadership challenge from John Key anyway?

Friday, November 18, 2005

Herald Premium Discontent

If you hadn't already noticed, both the blogspot and livejournal versions of the Herald Premium Content blog have been vapourised.
To my knowlege that LJ blog had only been up a couple of days.
LiveJournal are far more efficient than those liberal West-Coast slackers at Google. If I was planning on doing a Stalinst purge of history, the kids from LJ would be top of my list to call.

Anyway....
I just recieved an interesting email

Hey Nick,
Just thought I'd let you know blogger has been forced to delete the hpc blog, details of the DMCA C+D order will be here when available, however a new blog is located at http://nzhpremiumcontent.blogspot.com/
Make sure you inform both your readers about this ;p

Cheers,
[name deleted]

Rugby World Mea Culpa

Now I loathe Rugby Union as much as the next PM, but the awarding of the 2011 World Cup to New Zealand is a great thing for the country.
I'll be glad to watch those negative assholes in various media who yesterday were being so dismissive and even mocking of Helen Clark and NZ's chances - John Campbell, Paul Henry and various print journalists now being forced to eat their own negative bullshit.
Of course, they'll pretend that all along that they believed it could happen. That's the thing that makes me cringe about the New Zealand psyche, we are so keen to view ourselves in a negative light when there is no need to do so. After all, being negative about New Zealand is Australia's job.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Who needs elections?

This renewed call from Treasury to cut taxes is a little out of date don't ya think?
Didn't we just have an election a couple of months ago centred on this very issue?
Team Tax Cut lost. Get over it.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Out of Dontext


Why out of all the possible shots of Don Brash at Rod Donald's funeral did TV3 (media player link) chose this one? Every other politician was portrayed in a manner one would expect to see at a funeral, Helen was crying, others siting there solemnly heads in hands. Yet Don Brash gets a shot taken out of context implying that he was glad Rod Donald was being buried today.
You may or may not agree with everything Don Brash says but (unlike Peter Dunne) he is a decent man and this choice of shot was most unfair.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Get Well Soon Susan!

Dear Susan Wood,

I was shocked to hear that you have been struck down with an unknown dehabilitating illness right in the middle of tense employment negotiations.
Imagine the luck! Getting sick just as contract talks with your employer reached an impasse!
Still, you got good lawyers, I'm sure whoever caused this illness will pay the price.
I'm sure it's right to say the thoughts and prayers of all New Zealanders are with you tonight, as you recover from this mystery illness. I hope to God it's not avian flu.
Praying for your swift recovery,
Yours sincerely,
Michael Knight

Capital Pain Tax

The Real Estate mafioso has recoiled in horror at the suggestion of a Capital Gains tax on second homes. Those who have massive self-interest in the house price insanity continuing like the Banks and the Real Estate institute have called the idea 'insane' and some have even suggested the Government should instead cut spending in health and education to cool off the economy.
But really?
Does the economy have to be held to ransom because lemmings in middle New Zealand think buying a 7th home on 100% finance is a good idea?
Should we really have to choke off 'good' economic growth instead of targeting the problem area? Why bring out the sledgehammer of interest rate rises when a targeted knock on an inflated housing market could produce the same end-result - lower inflation without collateral damage to the entire economy.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

APN Tear down this wall!

Shortly after the election the New Zealand Herald introduced a subscription service, making site searches and regular columnists into "premium content" demanding a fee of $3 a day for usage. The NZ Blog clique is up in arms over this and it's got to the point where 13 Herald Writers and Kerre Woodham posted a protest letter on Public Address decrying their non-existent pay rise (as opposed to say, bloggers) and lack of reader feedback because of the "paywall". (or as right-wingers like to call it, a payfence)
Now I cannot see why anyone would ever want to pay $3 to read anything by Kerre Woodham, but who am I to judge. And it all seems very silly considering the paywall can be easily avoided with a greasemonkey script and the firefox browser.

However many people for whatever reason cannot use it or link to it, fortunately some altruistic soul (not I) is using their $99 subscription for good and has set up a Herald Premium content blog.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Gerry Brownlee: Sore Loser or Whinging Bitch?

National's deputy says he has "lost respect" for the Governor General and claims she is a "cohort" of Helen Clark.
Why?
Because -shock horror- she perfomed her constitutional duties to the letter of the law.
And yet if she had behaved unconstitutionally in the fashion Mr Brownlee wanted, it would, as he himself admits - "have made no difference to the outcome"
So what is the point of this attack?
Apparently Gerry Brownlee has decided it is time for a review NZ's constitutional arrangments - even though Gerry Brownlee said in August that constitutional reviews are a "waste of time".

It is a fairly serious (and slightly crazy) allegation to imply that the Govenor General is enagaged in some sort of collusional activity with the Prime Minister. Allegations of this sort should not be made lightly by Members of Parliament.
Crazy and defamatory allegations are what blogs are for.

Top 10 Presenting roles for Susan Wood

TVNZ is in a real bind, they can't sack Susan Wood, yet they already have former National party candidate Paul Henry lined up to take over CloseUp@7, so what to do with the highly paid Ms Wood and her fat contract? Move her on to another show!
Here's the Top 10 contenders -

1) Deadwood
2) Intrepid Journeys: Fallujah
3) NZ's Worst Drunk Drivers
4) Dancing with the Recently Paroled
5) Marc & Toddy's Rocky Road to Indonesia
6) Susan & Kevin : Chaotic
7) So you wanna be a P Dealer?
8) Convict Treasure Island
9) Supernanny
10) The Ralston Grope

Monday, November 07, 2005

Jesus Rules the House

One of the few items of interest of the commision opening of parliament is the choice of members to swear on the bible or koran or merely state an affirmation. Thus we are able to ascertain who is winning the power struggle between god fearing worship and godless paganism in our house of representatives.
And so the parliamentaty deity of choice for the 2005 term will be......

Jesus Christ!!

Triumphing again over paganism by 70-47 and keeping his unbeaten streak intact. This despite losing a couple of votes because two MPs (Pansy Wong & Jim Sutton) were too scared to turn up to the first day of school without a parent to hold their hand.

Interestingly there was a 4-1 split in favour of paganism amongst openly gay MPs yet amongst closeted gay MPs Jesus has a 3-1 majority.

Rod Donald 1957-2005



Why? Why? Why?
A healthy guy in the prime of his life, who had helped to change the political landscape for the better and just 1200-odd votes and a couple of days away from being in a position to implement the ideas he cared deeply about.
Life can be so cruel and unjust.

Holiday in Cambodia

Contrary to the obvious lack of postage for six weeks, this blog is not dead.
I've actually been on holiday, though not in Cambodia, Laos actually, Holiday in Laos doesn't seem as catchy a title.
The trip was great by the way. Nothing says overly earnest white liberal like a trip to remote parts of SE Asia.

As expected, my fellow contributors have posted exactly zero content to this site in my absence. Time to bring in some new blood I think.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

This much I don't Know

If Nandor Tanczos doesn't make it in to parliament on special votes who will be Attorney-General?

Why is it when Epsom voters practice vote-splitting it's because "they are a well-educated politically savvy electorate" but when Maori voters do the same thing it's "revealing a divided electorate sending a strong message to the Labour government"?

Has there ever been a man more triumphant after losing 80% of his party vote than Rodney Hide?

Has there ever been a party leader who hasn't been sacked after losing 80% of the party vote?

For a man that is so vocally anti-methamphetamine why is Peter Dunne behaving like he smokes it?

Is there a sexier leadership ticket than John Key/Katherine Rich anywhere in the world?

In the interests of "democracy" and "one-law-for-all" will the electorates of Epsom, Wigram and Ohariu-Belmont be abolished?

Apart from the usual suspects isn't it great that after such a close election result nobody is suggesting "voter fraud"?

Monday, September 19, 2005

Greenophobia

I feel a tad sorry for the Green Party, after dutifully serving as the canary in the mine for Labour for much of this election campaign, reality suggests they could be shut out of government altogether to placate NZ First or United. Although depending on how the special votes fall that could change.
Consequently at this stage no party has ruled out working with anyone, except Peter Dunne who seems to have a chronic case of greenophobia and fails to realise he has only 3 seats as opposed to Winston's 7. To rule out supporting a government that involves the Greens before negotiations have even started is foolish, working with the Greens may not be practical but to rule them out this early weakens United Future's position considerably. Even the Maori Party haven't ruled out the idea of supporting National even though that is as likely as Bob the Bumbler Clarkson being the next Governor-General.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Hello Pot Meet Mr Kettle

Rupert Murdoch says Tony Blair complained to him about supposed 'biased' coverage of the Katrina disaster by the BBC.
What the hell?
You're bitching about 'slanted' media coverage to the guy that is responsible for Fox News??
Bill Clinton also backed Blair's claim saying the coverage was "stacked up" against Bush Jr. Perhaps the fact Dubya chose to stay on holiday while a major city sank into chaos may have been responsible for that 'slant', even presenters from Fox News were savaging him after the hurricane hit.
In related Clinton news what is he really thinking in this picture?
Our guess - "I wonder if my dick fits in her ear"

Thursday, September 15, 2005

The Politics of Hate

If there's a prevalent smell in this election campaign it's been the stench of hate and envy, but with so many different people to hate things can easily get confusing. Well, threepointurn has the solution for the haters among us -
Our easy to follow "hate and vote" card - simply find the societal grouping that you blame most for NZ's problems then vote for the party that we've picked as doing the best job of "hating on" that group. We suggest printing the card out to take with you on polling day if you happen to suffer sudden memory loss.

For Whom the Ball Tolls

I didn't realise that when Don Brash suggested the addition of a 'pakeha' element to powhiri, "a pale-skinned semi-naked male poking his tongue out - leaping around in mock battle" that this is what he meant.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Florida '00 = Tauranga '05 ??

A Nation enjoys strong economic growth after two terms of a centre-left 'third-way' administration. In a strongly partisan election a strong challenger emerges from the right, a 'CEO-Politician' renowned for making political blunders and not having the best relationship with the spoken word. In one of the closest elections in living memory, the party of the right recieves less votes but wins the race and it all comes down to the disputed results in a region popular for it's sunshine and retirement living.

Or to put it simply -
Indecision 2005 - The Clusterfuck Scenario
Winston Peters loses Tauranga, NZ First gets 4.9%. Labour/Green - National/United evenly split the vote.
Legal proceedings over Bob Clarkson's campaign expenses begin, proceeding all the way to the Supreme Court.
The country waits for Winston yet again...

Just putting it out there....

Bob the Fondler

For anyone who's met Bob Clarkson, the "sexual harrassment" allegations are easy to believe, whether the harrassment was blokish stupidity or a hint of something more sinister is another story. But really, grabbing your crotch in the direction of a female TV3 journalist isn't likely to help your case.
I doubt the claims will harm Clarkson's chances this late in the piece but it's yet another example of why National trails Labour by over 10% amongst women. Mr Clarkson should prove be a strong challenger to Brian Connell for the title of craziest Tory MP in the upcoming parliament.

Monday, September 12, 2005

RetardedmediabeatupGate

Is it over yet?
Less than a week out from a supposed cliffhanger election and it's gone cold on me.
In fact I'm so sick of this crap I think I'm going to endorse Winston Peters.
He's a man after my own heart, his vision for the next three years is to sit at the back of parliament, make wisecracks and give Margaret Wilson shit. Sure, 90% of his policies are morally repugnant to me, but I'm willing to ignore that minor inconsistency and throw my support behind the man of the people.

Take RetardedmediabeatupGate, National supporters who think speeding on a South Island highway is a capital offence tied themselves up in knots claiming Brash's credibility was intact, on the other side Labour supporters demonstrated 'a more tolerant New Zealand' does not stretch to religions whose members are percieved to be a homogenous group of National supporters.

And yet Winston Peters was the only one to raise the question the non-hysterical among us wanted answered - Why the hell would you take the time in a busy schedule to encourage support from people who don't even vote?
The man of the people still has a few rounds left in him.

And quite frankly, why the fuck are these "family values" organisations lining up to support National?
I would never describe the National Party as a beacon of "traditional family values", it (like Labour) is a party populated by drunks, serial adulterers, sodomites and womanisers. Don Brash voted for prostitution law reform and voted for the civil union bill before voting against it.
I guess "taxcuts" is what Jesus would do.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Polland

Within the space of a few days, two supposedly reputable polls are showing radically different results.
Apparently it's because of a "volatile" electorate. I could be thinking a little outside the bubble here, but maybe the problem isn't "volatile" voters but the polls themselves. A popular technique among pollsters currently is to press undecideds into stating a preference and then counting it as firm support. Accompanying questions about "racist" policies or "talking down to people" could also taint the results.

In fact I would say that our own "Meaningless and Arbitrary Seat Predictor" does a better job of reflecting the changes in the public mood than any of the "scientific" polls, despite the fact our numbers are completely made up.
Maybe in light of these polls NZ's news organisations will stop wasting so much time and effort over-analysing polls and focus more on covering actual issues...
Fat Chance

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

They're Back


After a week and a day's holiday, The Daily Show is back with one of the best shows of the year.
Jon Stewart in fine form - Hurricane Katrina is Bush's Monica Lewinsky, except for one difference - "tens of thousands of people weren't stranded in Monica Lewinsky's vagina".

Release the Hounds!

I enjoy vandalising election hoardings as much as the next guy, but isn't issuing a press release about it a little over the top?
I always thought Don Brash was more Smithers than Burns anyway.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

What's wrong with Huntly?

You sick fucks
I hope whoever did this rots in hell.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

And so it began...

And so begins the Iraqi civil war....
Sickening.

Analogy of Idoicy

Trying my best not to sound callous in the face of human despair, but can we please stop with the "Our Tsunami" analogy over the Hurricane Katrina disaster. It's disrepectful not only to the thousands of South-East Asians who were killed last Boxing Day but also to the thousands of Americans suffering right now.
The appalling traegdy and despair we're seeing right now is obvious enough to make analogies like this totally redundant.
So how about instead of "Our Tsunami" it be called "Our Hurricane Katrina".

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Strategic Voting?

'Strategic' voting is creating some strange and contradictory bedfellows.
Known communists Che Tibby and NRT suggest to 'left' voters in Tauranga that in an attempt to unseat Winston Peters they should vote for National candidate Bob Clarkson. This is the same Bob Clarkson who says
"A family is a male, a female and a couple of children. You can do in your own home whatever you want - doesn't worry me two hoots - but don't you come into society and tell me that [homosexuality] is normal" which we can only assume is Clarkson's 'polite' way of saying
"You homos do what you like at home, but don't expect to be treated as equals in society"
Yet earlier this year NRT said 'left' voters should vote against Labour MP Phillip Taito Field because of his opposition to the Civil Unions Bill.
Confused?
I certainly am.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Lazy Journalism Tale #3683

"Tax cuts put Nats back in the lead" yet the poll result has Labour ahead by one point.
As the Herald has already shown, splitting the sample of a poll to get the results you want is so very wrong and misleading.
Please stop doing it.
Thanks.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Marc E

Hurrah!
Even though this site has shown little respect for name suppression laws in the past we are overjoyed that we can now legally say Marc Ellis is a "celebrity drug fiend"
We also note that he will now be referred to as 'Marc E" for the rest of his life.
It's been especially ironic seeing journalists discussing and reporting these events who I know for a fact enjoy a bit of recreational drug use themselves from time to time, some of them probably even scored off the same guy as Marc E.
This could end up being a watershed day for NZ television, a drug-bust that leads to the implosion of the NZ operations of the hated Touchdown TV,
or it could be that Marc E has just booked his appearence on Dancing with the Stars 2 years from now.

Lazy Journalism Tale #3682

The headline for the online story about the new Herald-Digipoll is "National and Greens gain support", except (as usual) that is not true. From the previous Herald-Digipoll National is actually down 2 points. And even if you go by the Herald's statistically fraudulent method of splitting the sample and look at the "'post-tax cut announcement" portion of the sample only, National remains unchanged at 38% from the previous poll.
How is this a "gain" in support?

Braindead is an Understatement

After universal condemnation of the obnoxious and loud audience in the TVNZ "debate", the state broadcaster has responded by increasing the number of partisan idiots sitting in on the final leaders debate from 40 to 56.
The only time I want to see those mindless partisan idiots on primetime tv again is with Marc Ellis as part of a Touchdown reality show where the losers are put to death.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Poor Act

I think's it's endemic of ACT's problems that after Rodney Hide's Face to Face interview the sole piece of viewer feedback that was read out was from a gentleman who claimed that Rodney's interview had convinced him to vote ACT.
The gentleman's name - Nick Kearney conincidentally happens to be the ACT candidate for Te Atatu and #51 on the ACT list.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Fix the Debates, Please!

If anything comes from the debacle that was the TVNZ leaders debate it should be the realisation that NZ needs something similar to the Commission on Presidential Debates used in the US.
If you don't agree, look at what we've had so far, this year's crop of debates have been somewhat farcical, all operating under radically different conditions and expectations.
TV3's multi-party debate was set the furthest from the election date which ensured it was of the least benefit for coverage-starved smaller parties, the Dunne-Anderton court ordered appearence was an absolute joke. TV3 have brought upon themselves a dangerous judicial precedent but for which TV3 only have themselves to blame. And I haven't even mentioned the frickin' worm.
And did anyone under 40 actually listen to the National radio debate at 7pm on a Friday? Of course the debate is not available online because that would be, well, you know, convenient. But then this is the same public broadcaster whose staff care so much about the public's right to know that they strike in the middle of an election campaign. For both the people that listened, the RNZ debate was scarred by the same noisy partisan cretins that ruined the TVNZ debate.

An independent commission comprised of representatives of the parties, major broadcasters and the voting public could decide frequency and format of the debates, along with the rules and conditions of entry. Each debate could be hosted by a different anchor from TVNZ, TV3 and Radio NZ or even Paul Holmes (just kidding). Every tv and radio station would be free to carry the feed, then we won't have the silly situation where TV3 news pretends the TVNZ debates don't exist and vice versa.
An independent debates commssion with a clearly defined role and based around serving the public interest would allow the voting public to be better informed and increase accessibility for the public good. This is the reason it will never happen. Ratings are far more important.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

One news Duh-bate

What a weird debate that was, One Sainsbury seeemed a little out of his depth trying to control the leaders and just let them riff on whatever they wanted. The bizarre debate format allowed Helen to completely talk over the top of the timid Don and although Helen Clark was indeed wearing a oversized Kit-Kat, by any objective analysis Don was crushed, so much so that he may have gained support on sympathy alone.
Though the Don does have a killer excuse as nicely paraphased by frogblog "I would have been more robust had Clark been a man. Because she was a woman, I decided to go softly on her".
And this guy wants to be PM? What would happen in discussions with another nation that has a female leader or foreign affairs minister, would he sell NZ down the river because he doesn't want to upset a "fragile" woman with open and robust debate?
Don Brash is obviously working hard on building that bridge to the 19th Century.

But seriously, whose idea was it to bring in idiot party hacks and put them in the crowd? I don't think hearing "rabble, rabble, rabble" whenever someone spoke added anything to the debate.
Although, I admit my interest was raised by the cute bespectacled National Party woman in the crowd who would wear her glasses in one segment then remove them for the next.
I vote glasses on, girl, it makes you look smarter.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

GTA - Waste of time 2 (Electric Boogaloo)

New Zealand's censors have finished re-rating videogame GTA - San Andreas, prompted by the discovery of a modification to the game which enabled 'hidden sex scenes'.
The modified version of the game will now bear the rating R18 with the descriptive note ‘contains violence, offensive language and sex scenes’.
The rating of the unmodified game (that being every single copy of the game legally offered for sale) is unchanged. As the censor's own press release acknowleges it is in violation of the game's licencing and end user agreement to sell a 'modified' version of the game with the sex scenes enabled.
Yes, our Censors have spent time and money re-rating a game it is illegal to sell.
Well, I guess if a business decides to sell the game and is sued into obilivon by the game's publishers at least they will have been using the correct classification sticker.
Thank you Office of Film and Literature Classification, you win this month's "Mindless bureacracy at work" award.

Game of Two Half Ounces

Crappy 'celebrity' quiz show Game of Two Halves will be must-watch televison tomorrow night, if this story is correct.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

8 Simple Rules

I really don't know what to make of National's bizarre TV ad campaign.
Don Brash and the National strategists are either extremely naive or electioneering savants.
Or maybe National's secret plan is that by making Brash look so inept, John Key will appear that much better when he finally takes over the leadership.

In the opening address (direct link) Don Brash (live from his round-windowed home in Hobbiton) seemed more concerned about defending himself from Labour's attacks than talking about what he and his party want to achieve. For god's sake, if you're going to do the "fake interview" style of advertising give a straight answer! You are writing the thing after all. The worst example being the answer to the question "Can we trust you?" instead of saying "Yes, you can trust me, This is why..." he answered with a 60 second blurb about Helen Clark's supposed untrustworthiness instead of directly answering the question about Don Brash.

But we are not heartless and we feel some sympathy for this piss-poor campaign so here are 8 simple rules for Don Brash to help him lift his game.

1) Give straight answers, especially to your own questions. Don't waffle.
2) Do not add qualifiers to your soundbites. Nuanced statements do not work in election campaigning. Ask John Kerry.
3) Talk about yourself and how awesome you are, not your opponent. Do not mention your opponent by name.
4) Don't get 'cute'. "Prime Moneywaster" is well past it's use-by date as is the anecdote about washing your socks.
5) This is a bad camera angle, do not use it.
6) Talk about the future, not the past.
7) Avoid negativity as that makes you sound bitter. Be positive whenever possible.
8) No matter what the context never ever utter the words "don't vote for me" in the very first line of your speech.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Ad Nauseum

In case you weren't already aware, election campaign advertisments started tonight, and in a major interweb scoop threepointturn has acquired advance copies of the 30 second campaign ads of all the major political parties. As a public service to both of our loyal readers we are making copies of these advertisments available online over the next few days.
To begin here are two leaked commercials for the big boys, Labour and National. (in swf format)
(also available in wmv format here and here although the webserver seems to cut a few seconds from the start for some reason)

A Simple Request

I don't know if it's expecting too much from humanity but could we at least have the decency to wait until the guy's body is in the ground before pissing on his grave.

As says Swearengen in Deadwood "Act civilised, even if you ain't"

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Lazy Journalism Tale #3681

In the Herald On Sunday, a headline claims "Greens wilting in new poll" so by the common definition of "wilting" (to feel or exhibit the effects of fatigue or exhaustion; weaken markedly) one would expect their poll rating to have dropped markedly or be in severe decline.
Er, not quite, this is the Herald on Sunday so the opposite is true, the Greens actually went up from 3.2% in the last Herald-Digipoll to 4% today. So that's actually an increase of 25%.
In fact, no party other than Labour had a larger increase in party support from the last Digipoll than the Green Party.
Insert trite statement about "lazy journalism" here.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Tale of the Tapeworm

It's official, the 'worm' sucks. Any device which favours the vague hypocritical middle-ground Peter Dunne occupies has to be fundamantally flawed, as such we have re-christened the 'worm' the 'retardometer' due to the effect it has on debate over actual issues.
Our uninformed leader by leader analysis follows.

Peter Dunne
The court decision forcing Dunne into the debate could end up being crucial to the future of United. Peter Dunne again benefited the most from the decision to include the retardometer in the debates. The media decides - based on a positive knee-jerk reaction from a small sample group that he 'connects' with the undecided voters, which in turn means more media coverage for the party and so it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Nevermind that all he says is meaningless bollocks.
"I want to see every child by the age of 10 to have basic literacy, numeracy and mind changing skills."
What the fuck is a mind changing skill?
Is it like a jedi mind trick? flip-flopping? something to do with Harry Potter?
4/5

Jeanette Fitzsimmons
The audience loved Fitzsimmons, and really how could you be mean towards her? She's just so fluffy and nice. The anti-Rodney Hide. Oddly, her success with the retardometer came with statements about actual policy rather than the meaningless platitudes. A Statement such as "Progress is more than just about making money" sets the Greens apart from the other parties and resonates with a considerable number of undecided voters, whether they come out to vote is another story. And extra points for not bringing up GE.
4/5

Helen Clark
A popular and competent performance, she didn't work any harder than she had to. It seems as if she was keeping a bit of ammo in reserve for the one on one debate with Brash. Gave the impression to voters that she knows more about National's own policies than Don Brash. Brash then proved it beyond doubt which drew potential heat from the minor parties away from her.
4/5

Winston Peters
Dubya had a bit of an off-night, slightly hungover perhaps? Still pisses all over Brash at playing opposition leader. Managed to land a few zingers on Hide and Brash but didn't really get to riff much on bashing immigrants and when he did the retardometer didn't give him much rub, though I suspect his appeal to the undecided television viewers would be stronger than the studio audience.
That alternate universe where Winston Peters is leading the National Party to a third successive victory must be quite a strange place.
3/5

Rodney Hide
He was just 'there', not overly offensive, none too interesting either. He did the best that could be expected of him and may have inspired some right-National voters to reconsider ACT as a viable option. The problem is he just doesn't seem to be able to connect with lower-income voters like Richard Prebble could. Rightly or wrongly, short angry white guy doesn't play well with the undecided voter.
3/5

Don Brash
For a debut performance by a first-term MP he wasn't too bad, pity that is nowhere near good enough for the leader of the main opposition party. Without the readily apparent leadership skills he needed to fall back on policy, unfortunately much of that hasn't been released yet, which leaves him up shit creek without a waka let alone a paddle. He seemed more concerned with giving watertight nuanced answers than delivering clear decisive statements of intent. If the National party campaign really is being "directed from Washington" it must the Democratic party doing it.
2/5

Tariana Turia
Biggest mistake was being a Maori woman concerned about Maori issues, the retardometer punished her for it, no matter what she said. Hurrah for racism.
1/5

Jim Anderton
Made me want to smoke P and hold-up the local Kiwibank. Court action needs to be taken to ban him from future debates.
0/5

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Eight is Enough

TV3 will be rushing to get another two podiums erected for the debate tonight with the forced additions of Dunne and Anderton, the judge ruled that as TV3 was performing a public service they had to include them, it's a interesting precedent, perhaps Destiny NZ's lawyers will be in court this afternoon arguing their case as they certainly have reason to be included following this decision. But quite frankly, six was always a ridiculous number to have in a debate given that there are 8 parties in parliament, four of which are actually relevant to most New Zealanders. I wonder how much face time Anderton and Dunne will get on the programme tonight, 5 maybe even 10 seconds? Not that I'm suggesting TV3 would ever treat a politician unfairly in an election campaign.

Brent Todd

At his request, Brent Todd has had his name supression removed in the "celebrity drug trial", I wonder if the fact that the other "celebrity" has an awful TV show running at the moment is anything to do with continuing his name suppression.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The Worm Returns

According to TV3 news the much-despised "worm" will be making an unwelcome return to tomorrow's 6 party TV3 "debate". Based on the campaign so far, expectations are not high for an intelligent or reasoned discussion but with the addition of the worm we can expect at best a 'fridge magnet' debate with lots "moving forward" "united" "together" "creating" "a Stronger New Zealand".
Thank god Doctor Who is on at the same time.

Westfield vs Democracy

Shopping mall operator Westfield is refusing to let enrolment booths operate within it's shopping malls without paying a $2500 a week fee. Even though other malls, supermarkets and The Warehouse let the booths operate without charge.

Westfield claims that because a company is (shock!, horror!) being paid to run the enrolment booths, they should get a cut too. They consider getting citizens enrolled to vote on the same level as selling water filters and steak knives.
Political candidates are still allowed to campaign in their malls "free of charge" because Westfield considers that to be a "non-profit" activity. In that case perhaps some thugs from the National Front should be encouraged to go and campaign in their shopping malls.

Other than going to their corporate headquaters in Auckland and pouring red and blue paint on their nice carpet, perhaps a few emails from disgusted citizens might make them change their tune.
Yeah right.
You can contact their marketing manager Linda Trainer at ltrainer@nz.westfield.com or call 09 978 5050

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Go the Black Caps!

The NZ Cricket team have shrugged off the incessant whining about their forced tour of Zimbabwe in the best way possible, by destroying the home team within 2 days in the 1st test and recording the largest margin of victory by a NZ team ever.
It probably makes me a blood-thirsty Mugabe-loving tyrant (if I wasn't already) but I had to laugh when New Zealand received their prize money for winning the game -
$20,000,000 which at the current exchange rate equates to $NZ1706.
Ouch!

Road Rage

I see the kids have been making good use of the school holidays and have created "'Keep Left" "Your source for real political information", any site which states such invariably means exactly the opposite.
According to the site if you support National or ACT you are 'bad', supporting Labour, the Greens or Jim Anderton makes you 'good'.
To quote Star Wars "Only a Sith deals in absolutes"
But thank you "Keep Left" for making things simple, no longer do I have to actually think about an issue or examine actual facts to form a opinion, I just have to choose the 'Left' or 'Right' opinion depending on the 'team' I support.
I also find the obsession with Don Brash a little disconcerting, perhaps I'm too old but I really don't find the guy that threatning. Sure, I disagree with most of what he says, but it's not as if he's the second son of Satan like these guys seem to think he is. It's ironic that these smear tactics used against Brash are very similar to some of those used by Bush Republicans against the similarly wooden Senator Kerry.
But I gotta give them their due, they are right up there with Tom Scott in making retarded Hitler references.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Caller Despair

In another stunning display of idiocy National wants to review Telecom's KiwiShare obligations to provide free local calling and telephone services to rural areas. Clearly this has been a long time coming, Telecom - a struggling, majority foreign-owned monopoly are still yet to post a yearly profit of over billion dollars since being gifted the nation's phonelines over ten years ago.
Bearded Maurice Williamson claims the Kiwishare obligations are "a barrier to other players investing because it is incredibly hard to compete with free local calls", er, no, the barrier to investing in telecommunications here is a powerful entrenched monopoly and successive governments unwilling to step in and regulate the industry to provide actual competition and better prices and services for New Zealanders.

Holmesless

So, Paul Holmes on Prime has been cancelled, it's a shame really. Perhaps it was schadenfraude but I must have been one of the few people who actually enjoyed his show with it's mix of amateur reporting and a host riffing on whatever subject pissed him off that day irrespective of current events. Be interesting to see what exactly Prime does with him now. I'd quite like to see Holmes in an edgy late night show where he can go a little bit more crazy with longer interviews and perhaps even a little bit of cursing and swearing.
I certainly enjoyed Holmes more than the god-awful "Close Up" where apparently the biggest problem in NZ (read - Auckland) is gulliable people using the wrong builder and ending up with a "leaky home". And "Campbell Live", television's bran cereal, you knows it's good for you, but it's hard to eat everyday without venting a lot of shit. And don't get me started on the pretentious "Book Club".

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Loan Free

Nick emailed me saying that if I didn't post something soon he would demote me to "Intern" so like Jim Sutton in court here I am against my will.
When I first heard about Labour's "No Interest" Student Loan lolly scramble, like "Foot and Mouth disease on Waiheke Island" I thought the Australian media had mis-reported the policy, surely the loan would still contain some interest somehow? at the very least adjustment for inflation? Apparently not, Labour is content to mortgage the country's future for the sake of vote-buying.

I can hear the squeal-in-unison "But so are National's tax cuts" No, they are not. Lowering the tax burden on working New Zealanders is a core principle of the National Party. Labour said as recently as 2 months ago that there would be no radical changes to student loans. A bit of poll trouble and voila - a loan policy more radical than the Green Party's.

So you may have to forgive me for my cynical attititude about this policy given that
A) I paid off my own student loan voluntarily and in full two years ago, and
B) I live and work overseas so I would not recieve the interest discount anyway.

Every person with a student loan has signed a contract that clearly states the conditions of repaying the loan, if you can not or choose not to understand the consequences of that contract, then you don't deserve to be in tertiary study. With this policy it's as if Labour have decided to move the goalposts halfway through the game, or in my case, after it's been over for two years. Unlike many who joined the "brain-drain" from New Zealand I busted my ass to get my loan balance down and eventually paid off before i took off overeseas, but yet now I see those who have skipped the country without paying their due will recieve an amnesty on penalty payments for avoiding those repayment obligations.
So by taking personal responsibility for one's own debt and playing by the rules I am far worse off if I had skipped the country without paying my dues.
Thank you NZ Labour party. Celebrating and rewarding medocrity for over 60 years.

White Lies

In a seemingly self-penned Herald article, property developer David Henderson claims he attempted to buy 10 grams of cocaine to "lose weight" - quite possibly the most expensive weight-loss regime ever.
But he is a property developer, so chiding him for lying is like berating a baby for wetting itself. If, as he is requesting, he gets discharged without conviction, this could open up a new line of defence for affluent lawyered-up drug users -
Your Honour, the cannabis was for my glacoma, that ecstacy was for preventing the onset of Alzheimers, the crystal meth was to maintain an erection and the heroin was so I could go to sleep afterwards.
But seriously, if you're going to take illegal drugs to lose weight, P is the way to go, it's cheaper, more effective and available everywhere.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Young Turks

Unsuprisingly 95,000 of New Zealand's youth aren't enrolled for the election, one quarter of all eligible "young voters" in New Zealand are not enrolled, that figure is as high as 44 percent in Auckland. Given that many young people have chosen to stop using using vowels in written language, this has to be a good thing.
All sorts of reasons for the 7.3% of the entire population missing from the roll are given by the election officals, except for the biggest reason people choose to not enrol.
BAYCORP.
It's like a private poll tax, if you want to vote you best be sure you have a clean record with the credit agencies. To have an unlisted phone number all it takes is a phone call to Telecom, but for a name to be unlisted in the electoral roll a court order or a special favour from a police officer is required.
Seems rather contrary to democratic principle that a person hiding not from the Police, but a private organisation such as Baycorp is never going to put their name on the electoral roll. Yes, most of these people are idiots and/or thieves and will vote for NZ First or the 99MP Party, but they should still have the facility to cast their vote.

Disclaimer - I have never been involved with any negative dealings with any credit agency whatsoever, although I take a slightly morbid pleasure in returning the letters they send the now deceased former owner of the house. Seriously Baycorp, stop sending them, it's getting kind of spooky now.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

More Name Suppression High Jinks

Stephen Franks in parliament today -

"[TVNZ] has supported a Queen’s Counsel in repeated court applications for name suppression for a star so that it can save the programme ratings until the programme ends..."

Franks also states
the person is "accused of a serious violent sex offence" and that he first raised the issue in written questions dated 3 May 05.

You Got Served

Labour's Student Loan policy is certainly impressive, especially when compared to National's polished turd of a policy.

The predictable response from National is that this is an "election-year bribe" unlike say, an unspecified personal tax-cut, and that it is unfair to those who have already paid off their loans. Sure, that is inequitable, but it's also unfair that those who enjoyed a virtually-free tertiary education in the 80s have no loan to pay. That argument is similar to claiming that a store is not allowed to discount a product after you agreed to pay twice the price for the exact same product five years ago. There are also concerns that students with "rich parents" will take out a loan to pay their university fees instead of using the funds which they have saved for that very purpose. Perhaps the "rich parents" will instead use these funds to "create and drive economic growth" like National's "tax cuts" are meant to.

The other argument National is spinning that it will "encourage increased student borrowing", that's quite likely, but that will be significantly counter-balanced by the pace at which the loans will be paid off. And quite frankly, the removal of interest charged on student loans is a removal of a significant barrier to accessing teritary education, for most people this cannot be a bad thing.

At the very least it's an attempt to address the student loan problem instead of meaningless window dressing we've had in the past.

The election is so on now, girlfriend.

The (Not so) Great Debates

The election's been announced and so have proposed details of the televised leaders debates. Disappointingly TVNZ have opted for Mark "Walrus" Sainsbury over Simon Dallow to conduct their debates.
Why? Why? Why? Dallow is one of the few television presenters who will not allow his interview subjects to repeat the same talking points over and over again, he asks pointed questions repeatedly and most of the time calls politicians on their bullshit.
Sainsbury seems too much like he wants to be an MP's 'special friend' and his "political insight" seems to be based on whatever John Armstrong wrote in the Herald three weeks ago.

TV3 have opted for their own version of NZ Political "Survivor" with the bottom two of the eight parliamentary parties to be 'cut' from their six-party debate. Taking it as a given that the Progressives will be bottom, it's going be a interesting fight between United, Act and the Maori Party for those final two spots in the 6 party debate. TV3 will make the decision based on their own polling, which in June would have seen ACT cut on the basis of their 1.5% to United's 1.9%. It will be interesting to see what TV3 will do if a non-parliamentary party like Destiny polls 2% and sneaks ahead of ACT and United Future.

Along with the multi-party free for all debate, TV3 will also hold a leaders debate exclusively for Labour and National. However they reserve the right to invite Winston if they choose to. Labour should be lobbying TV3 hard to get Winston included. Splitting the oppostion and undermining National's credibility as the legitimate opposition party is a strategy they must pursue. Not to mention Helen and Winston tag-teaming on Brash would be television gold for the ages.

Monday, July 25, 2005

America! Fuck Yeah!

I could be completely wrong but maybe the "Americans under the bed" campaign is more about showing the differences between National and NZ First rather than just Labour.
There is a large undecided anti-Government vote and it is obviously in Labour's best interests to ensure as many of those voters go to Winston rather than National.
And what better way to indirectly highlight those differences than by portraying Don Brash as an indecisive leader willing to "cosy up" to American interests. Which when contrasted with the popular perception of Winston Peters as a strong nationalistic leader, makes the decision for Joe at the TAB who hates the "PC Social Engineering of the Government" more clear-cut. Splintering large chunks of the anti-Government vote off to NZ First and United Future could end up being the difference-maker for Labour come election-day.

Odd?

Perhaps I'm giving him more Machiavellian credit then he deserves, but I find it odd that just hours after he was informed that the candidate he is managing was assaulted on the streets of Wellington, that DPF would post an item about a wacky "left-wing" blog rant calling for "Blood on the Streets" if Don Brash is elected.
On the other hand we have to give DPF "props" for putting this post immediately after this post in his blog. If only we were as brazen at testing name suppression laws as he.

GTA - Waste of Time

NZ's classification board has decided to waste time and money reclassifying the video game - GTA San Andreas after Hillary Clinton other American politicians with nothing better to do kicked up a stink about 'hidden' sex scenes in the game which can only be unlocked by altering part of the game's code. It's a tad odd to base a rating of a game on something which is not viewable without "hacking" or altering part of the game code. Much like what happened to "Dead or Alive: Extreme Beach Volleyball" what would happen if someone made a 'mod' or alteration to the game "Rugby 2005" to remove the player's uniforms and have them play naked? Would that then require the game's rating of "G" to be changed?
Given the Censors gave the game "Playboy - the Mansion" a R16 rating and GTA San Andreas already has the rating of R18 there's little prospect of a rating change or a ban, which makes for a big waste of time for all concerned and good advertising and sales for the game itself.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Poster Children of Mediocrity

In response to the successful albeit decitful Don Brash-Iraq attack ad campaign, the batshit crazy nut-jobs at Sir Humphrey's have taken the bait and mocked up their own equally retarded Saddam-Helen Clark poster, which for a blog that wants to infect the PM with the ebola virus is a relatively moderate position I suppose.
In retaliation Labour's "MSM communist femo-nazi death robots (Youth Division)" are rumoured to be releasing these new Brash posters shortly to let the country know exactly where Brash really stands on other historical hypotheses.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Charlie Horse

In light of recent events, one would expect that this upcoming TVNZ-Touchdown tv show will be cancelled.
Oh irony, you truly are a wonderful thing.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Lying in the Gutter


George Bush and Iraq are now a key part of Labour's election campaign according to the latest salvo in the ongoing trite and stupid political billboard war. It's only a matter of time until Brash dressed as Hitler or Helen Clark as Stalin appears on a wall near you.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Stop the Tour?

The New Zealand Basketball team left for a tour of China this morning, with not a murmur of protest from those opposed to the NZ cricket tour of Zimbabwe. I guess "making a stand for human rights" by cancelling sports tours only applies when the destination country has no money or power.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Louder than Bombs

Events like the London bombings bring out the best and worst in people.
The best - people like the bus driver who stayed to help his injured passengers.
Then there's the worst of people - obviously those who committed the crime are just that, but a special mention needs to be made of those far removed who pass judgement on a situation they know little about. Whether it's equating terrorist attacks with Civil Union legislation or Fox News reporting an already discredited story that Israel had prior knowlege of the attacks.
Our own NZ Blog Clique is symptomatic of this - personal ancedotes of the event aside, blogs are nothing, if not totally redundant immediately following an event like this - whether it's using the attacks as "evidence" that the West is winning/losing the War on Terror™ or to justify your vile bigotry.
Ignoring the known crazies, the stupidest idea I've heard is that "they had it coming" because of the Iraq invasion.
Did they really?
Yes, we put a higher value on the lives of Westerners than other human beings and that is sickening.
Yes, when we aren't ignoring their deaths, we trivialise them, reduce human tragedy to a single sentence on a news broadcast, sometimes even calling incidents killing dozens of human beings "fantastic stuff".
This is all very wrong, but that is no justification to say the London bombing victims "deserved it". For better or worse, Tony Blair and Bush II are accountable for their actions. The London bombers whoever they are, are not. They are an anathema to humanity. The rule of the thug.

Further more, if the British and other Western nations "had it coming" over the Iraq invasion, where does that rationalisation end?
The Iraq clusterfuck didn't exist at the time of the 2001 WTC attacks, so maybe they "deserved" it because of the creation of a Jewish state in the Middle East? If not that, maybe Western involvment in the Iranian coup of 1953? Centuries of British colonialism perhaps? How about the defeat of the Moors in 15th century Europe? The Crusades? Roman Emperor Theodosius making Christianity the official religion of the roman empire?
So to completely satisfy the Islamist radicals said to have carried out these attacks all we have to do is reverse 2000 years of Western civilisation. Sounds pretty rational to me.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Silly Point

In today's Herald the Executive director of Amnesty International NZ has the only rational solution to the controversy over the NZ cricket tour of Zimbabwe
"If they decide not to protest by refusing to go, they must protest some other way."

However the Green Party have a 'solution' to the Zimbabwe cricket tour issue - reactionary ad hoc Terri Schiavo style legislation.
This bill is deeply flawed and potenially dangerous and will not achieve anything positive for anyone including NZ Cricket and especially those suffering under Mugabe's regime.
Those who are prescribing the impractical solution are not the ones having to swallow it. I'll be interested to see whether these same opportunistic souls jumping on the Anti-Zimabawe tour bandwagon will be opposing the NZ participation in the Chinese Olympic Games come 2008.
(By the way, if you are idealistic enought to support sporting sanctions against China - I ask you to inspect the underside of the computer mouse you're using right now and read the words "Made in China". Remember kids, victory begins at home.)

The Zimbabwe Cricket Union could actually stand to gain more in dollar terms if there was a cancellation by NZ Cricket. The compensation they would recieve from NZC via the ICC will be based on the ZCU's own inflated estimates of gate-takings and TV revenue, and they will still play their games against India and South Africa, both far bigger cricketing drawcards for television and ticket sales than New Zealand. The ZCU would also gain considerable sympathy from many of the "non-white" national boards over this issue, further solidyfing Zimbabwe's position within the ICC and widening the white/non-white divide even further. The fact that the other 'white' nations - England and Australia have toured Zimbabwe recently makes our case for a non-tour look even weaker. If Phil Goff was actually serious about finding a constructive solution, India and South Africa would be the first nations to open dialogue with. Australia may 'support' us but are they going to ban any future Zimbabwe cricket tours and risk their 2011 Cricket World Cup bid? I think not.

So should we destroy New Zealand's leading summer sport purely for principles that we as a nation only seem to believe in when it is convinient and/or an election year?
If we wish to pursue sanctions against Zimbabwe it must not be done in a reactionary cynical way, but rather with other like-minded countries in an effective and realistic manner that could actually instigate change in the country rather than the ineffectual moral posturing we are witnessing now.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Call on Me

Foreign-owned Telecom and state-owned NZ Post are throwing their support behind the NZ flag petition, by including a petition with every Telecom bill in August which will reach approximately 1.4 million NZ households. According to their respective corporate spin merchants this does not mean they support the petition "We're not taking any position at all" and "It's merely a case of helping Kiwis share their opinion on the topic", both companies doing their part to provide more material for at least few more tired beer advertisments. Perhaps in the future both companies will combine again to distribute petitions calling for increased competition in the telecommunications and mail-delivery markets since that's a "good debate to be having" too.

Personally, open corporate support for trivial issues like this makes me feel kind of icky. Perhaps I'm old school, but I prefer shady backroom deals, an army of lobbyists and anonymous "donations" as the principal corporate method of manipulating government policy.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Getting Shirty 2



An amnesty.org alternative NZ Cricket Shirt
There's no reason for NZ Cricket not to do this as there's no way in hell that the National Bank is going to want the PR nightmare of having their brand associated with this tour. According to the ICC Regulations, "Any Commercial logo shall be decided by each member board",
National Bank could "suspend" their sponsorship at no cost to NZ Cricket as a gesture of goodwill, NZ Cricket would then be forced to seek another "shirt sponsor" at short notice, a generous individual could then step in and offer NZ Cricket $1 on behalf of Amnesty NZ to sponsor the team for the tour.
The only catch in the regulations I see is that "A visiting team shall abide by any law of the host country which restricts advertising of a product." Of course if Zimababwe decided to then make a issue of advertising Amnesty, it would then put more international and regional focus on Zimababwe and what Amnesty and other organisations are reporting. Even if (as I expect) I'm completely wrong and the ICC did decide to fine NZ Cricket over a "commercial sponsor violation" it surely would be much smaller than even the minimum $NZ2.8 million fine charged for not touring. That would be a fine worth paying.

Getting Shirty

Here's a quick Photoshop rendition of a proposed Black Caps ODI uniform featuring Amnesty International and Actionaid logos, two of the organisations most responsible for making the rest of the world aware of what is going on in Zimababwe right now. A white armband could be used instead of the black with this One Day uniform for obvious reasons.

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Stipend Dreams

TV1 'Tax Debate' Thoughts
Being an investment banker apparently makes one 'neutral' on tax issues.
DPF is the spitting image of a middle-aged Eric Cartman.
Rodney Hide is going to have a heart attack soon.
Out of the 30 people participating there were two women.
29 of the 30 were Pakeha.
Despite being 'the backbone of the nation' farmers apparently don't pay tax as there were none on the show.
There seems to be a direct correlation between body fat percentage and support for tax cuts.

Tour of Duty

So let me get this straight, National is against giving $26,000 to a New Zealander to go on a "hip-hop tour", but is more than happy to give up to $50,000,000 to one of the most evil regimes in the world so the NZ Cricket team don't have to go on tour?
Ain't political opportunism great?

Run Out

I confess. Cricket is my favourite sport and I was actually looking forward to the Zimababwe tour as an opportunity for NZ to boost their batting & bowling averages after a difficult summer. But of course, it's election year, so the tour is perfectly timed to make cricket into a political football despite NZ having toured Zimabawe with little fuss four times in the past decade.
I am somewhat surprised that Phil Goff, by joining forces with only Australia and England expects to pressure the ICC to 'stand up' to Zimbabwe, without even attempting to ask India for help as they will be touring Zimabawe and playing in a tri-series with NZ at the same time.
As Richard Boock wrote in today's NZ Herald,
The ICC isn't run by stuffy Brits any more, it's run by the combined weight of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Africa, the West Indies and Zimbabwe.
The only teams that have had issues touring Zimbabwe in recent times are the 'white' countries - England, Australia and NZ. We like to call it 'making a stand for human rights' whereas other members of the cricketing world call it 'western arrogance and hypocrisy'. Given that the 'white' countries are eagerly pursuing free trade agreements with nations like China, can you really blame them? It's all very well for governments to 'stand up for human rights' when they themselves have nothing to lose.

Where do we draw the line on banning sports tours? Zimbabwe's principal political backer is the government of South Africa, so should the All Blacks and the Black Caps call off their respective tours there later this year? What about the military dictatorship in Pakistan? They don't even have Zimbabwe's nominally "elected" government yet we welcome their leader into our country with open arms. If the government is going to prevent New Zealanders travelling to countries who do not have 'spotless' human rights, again, where do you draw the line? Are we going to prevent NZ citizens from being 'allowed' to travel to countries who do not have perfect records on respecting human rights?

So what's going to happen? the government could pay the fine, but it's not $2 million. It's a US$2 minimum fine, as well as paying for any losses incurred by the host country. Is paying the Mugabe government upwards of $50 million any more palatable than touring there under protest? And the punishement doesn't end there, NZ Cricket could face suspension from world cricket for up to two years. So what would we really achieve? Zimababwe cricket would incur no financial losses, NZ Cricket would be destroyed and the Mugabe government would still be doing what they are doing.

The prospect of bankrupting NZ Cricket over Zimabawe for cricket fans like myself would be devastating and futile, so what I propose is that while in Zimababwe NZ Cricket removes all sponsorship logos from the players uniforms and replace them with that of Amnesty international or a similar organisation, to make our point that NZ finds the behaviour of Mugabe's government intolerable. I think that would send a stronger message than simply not turning up at all. The team could also wear black armbands in show of solidarity with former Zimababwe cricketers Henry Olonga and Andy Flower who bravely wore them in the 2003 World Cup to mark the 'death of democracy' in Zimababwe

Interestingly, a series between an All-Asian and an All-African team which will include Zimabawe's cricketers is to be played from August 15-21 in South Africa at the same time as NZ are touring Zimababwe. This gives a strong hint that Zimabawe does not expect NZ to tour anyway.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Out of the Mainstream

I knew I'd heard National's 'out of the mainstream' phrase somewhere before. it was here - in this clip of batshit crazy US Republicans discussing John Edwards VP nomination from The Daily Show last year.
Perhaps 'out of the mainstream' is National's version of the Bush campaign's winning technique of projecting your own weaknesses on to your opponent. Bush's dubious military career was projected on to that of his decorated 'war-hero' opponent, and the infamous 'flip-flop' campaign made Kerry look to be the one was constantly changing positions.
Here, it's taken the form of National claiming Labour to be 'out of the mainstream' even though much of National's own core policies are to the right of New Zealand's centre. The 'mainstream' is a vague term, and as Don Brash has found out, very hard to define other than by exclusion.
So, if Gays and Maori 'by definition' are 'out of the mainstream' because they are in the minority, doesn't that make Don Brash and the National Party themselves, 'out of the mainstream' too?
After all, in Godzone at least, denying the existence of climate change is hardly mainstream is it? What about supporting nuclear-powered ship visits? Cutting the Public Health Service? Sending our soldiers to Iraq? Ignoring child poverty?
Perhaps come election-time TVNZ could do a political edition of that awful How normal are you? show and settle this issue.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Owned

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Three Point Turn.
Undefeated pub quiz champions six years running.

Billboardom

From the online Act billboard maker, I can see Act's agenda clearly now. They want to raise political discourse in New Zealand from two to three words. No doubt aware of the fungal spread of lame National billboard spoofs though most of the NZ pol-blog clique, ACT, have developed a new 'ridicule-based' strategy to spread their message, they've even provided the tools to make it easy so any amateur pundit can create their own distinct version of 'satire' (in 3 words or less) without that pirated copy of Photoshop.
Copying the Nats billboards is considered fair exchange for National taking most of ACT's policies, but does being in ACT make you that desperate for attention that inviting and encouraging ridicule is called "campaigning"? Act's thinking must be 'any publicity is good publicity', (especially taxpayer-funded publicity.)
Although I do admit, Act and National have got it right, election campaigns should not be about issues that can't be summed up in more than two or three words, Who really has the time to deal with fully formed sentences and fact-based content in today's fast paced world?
And at least Act are scoring some new dumb catchphrases to use and maybe they'll even score some email and postal addresses which are like golddust to them. Because there's one thing to be sure, even if there is a nuclear war and everything on earth is wiped out, cockroaches will survive and your name will still be on the Act party mailing list.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Destiny Uncut

I'm looking forward to getting my hands on Brian Tamaki's (almost) banned "Brian Tamaki: Too hot for TV" DVD. You can now see the video the "witches in the media tried to ban" online too. I'll be interested to see if the DVD includes any juicy extras like bloopers, deleted scenes, out-takes, or hopefully a director's commentary? But what is most interesting about this DVD and the accompanying promotional tour is that they are being promoted under the "Bishop Brian" brandname rather than his already successful company "Destiny Church" who awarded him his catchy new bishop title the other day. I can't think why the Destiny owners would create multiple organisations like Destiny NZ or the 'Bishop Brian' brand when they are one and the same? Surely it would be a waste of the valuable 'donations' the church relies on to 'survive'? It's lucky these people are Christians or I'd say something fishy was going on.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Flame Retarded


Beautiful pun on the US flag burning amendment from one the better episodes (torrent) of The Daily Show of recent times. It's sad that Stephen Colbert is leaving, but at least he's going to his own mock Fox News show 'The Colbert Report" that will screen alongside The Daily Show in September.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Give me Medication

I love a good shit fight in parliament, although it is disappointing we still lack the occassional fisticuffs one often views in more mature democracies like Taiwan and South Korea.
A Super-Heavyweight Gerry Brownlee v. Parekura Horomia title fight would be to die for.
It's cute how politicians claim how 'passionate' they are about New Zealand, when it seems the things that get our politicians most 'passionate' in the house are petty jibes at their mental health rather than public policy. Which is what happened to Nick Smith yesterday after being told to 'take his medication'.
"The record is very clear. I actually haven't taken any medication for many, many years",
which he then proved beyond any doubt by saying
"I could make reference to the Prime Minister's childlessness, to Lianne Dalziel's drunken spell in Hanmer Springs."
Dalziel responded
"The implication I took is that I have been admitted to Hanmer Springs for drunkenness. That is a complete falsity.."
This is true, everyone knows Labour's designated rehab center is the Capri Trust in Auckland.
Seriously, is this not a case for the privileges committee? Either Smith or Dalziel is lying, well, actually "misrepresenting the truth" I think it's called nowdays.
Smith later defended singling out Helen Clark for not having children (unlike, say the leader of the National Party) by claiming it was the same as "making jokes about the fact Jim Bolger or Bill English had a large number of children". I can't quite see how inferring "You are infertile" and "You are fertile" would provoke the same reaction, but I have recently taken medication so what would I know.
I could also make reference to Nick Smith drinking the blood of virgins, not filling in his tax return and using his electoral caravan as a mobile 'shagging wagon' to pick up Nelson pensioners, but I'm above that sort of accusation.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Grand Theft Auto:Sunday

The 15 minute report/informercial on Grand Theft Auto on TVNZ's Sunday was the most retarded journalism I've seen since I last watched 20/20. Shock! Horror! Children are playing an R18 game and it could have negative effects!!! Next week on Sunday, a group of 7 year olds will have shots of vodka, smoke cigars, engage in consensual sexual intercourse, sign a hire purchase contract and vote in an election, it's called "Teaching kids to be Hitler - The Dangers of under-age voting". Where is that long-awaited NZ version of the 'Daily Show' (sans Radar) to deal with 'stories' like these?
The Sunday report was obviously a clever promotional tie-in with the recent XBox and PC releases of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. The best function of the Xbox/PC versions is the ability to import your own 'radio station' music tracks into the game to complement the already brilliant soundtrack. To make this post look more substantial, these are my current top 10 imported tracks on my GTA:SA playlist,
(all tracks have to be pre-1993 and match the tone of the game)
Kenny Loggins - Danger Zone
Eazy E - Real Muthaphukkin G's
Manfred Mann - Blinded by the light
Salt n' Pepa - Push it
The Clash - Guns of Brixton
Snap! - The Power
2 Live Crew - Put her in the Buck
Brewer & Shipley - One toke over the Line
Tears for Fears - Sowing the Seeds of Love
Kris Kross - Jump

Sunday, June 19, 2005

This Much I Know

a) We've been really slack at posting lately
b) Batman Begins kicks ass

Friday, June 03, 2005

Poll Position

NBR's poll putting Labour and National neck and neck is the talk of the town, Labour losing four points in a month to NZ First and National. This erosion in Labour support most likely stems from the foolish mistake of raising expectations prior to May's budget that there were to be significant tax cuts, when this was clearly not the case. (No, it has nothing to do with Benson-Pope, no-one apart from bondage enthusiasts like Hide and Matron Judith gives a toss).
Back in January Maxine suggested National should pursue the 'positive message' of tax cuts instead of beating up on solo mothers, and (for once at least) she has been proven correct. Of course it was not National that put the issue of tax cuts in the national spotlight, it was Labour in what is looking now to be one of the worst strategic blunders in recent memory, cutting taxes is one area where Labour ideologically cannot compete with the centre-right, perhaps Labour were becoming too arrogant for their own good. Whether National can capitalise on this and take the lead in setting the agenda for the election campaign remains to be seen.

(sidenote - Why is it that I cannot purchase a copy of NBR anywhere in the medium-sized town I live in? We have a McDonald's, a KFC, The Warehouse, and a Subway outlet, but I cannot buy a copy of NBR, my local supermarket even sells frickin' Allergy Monthly but not NBR)

Schapelle's Show

I swear most of this country is high on crack.
In the past week, I've witnessed supposedly respectable broadcasters debate whether to withdraw Australia's tsunami relief to Indonesia because of the Schapelle Corby affair. Crack-heads en masse are to boycott the third world prices of Bali, because apparently third world judicial systems should only be for the people who live there not for visitors who break the law. A crack-head has sent dishwashing powder to the Indonesian embassy. At this point 90% of Australia believes she is innocent. The rationale behind this support seems to be the idea that she's too attractive to be guilty. I don't get it, she's not even in the same league as Nicole Kidman during her time in the Bangkok Hilton. All I see is an unbearable likeness to that of annoying Pieta from Muppet Treasure Island. Perhaps New Zealand can step in and arrange a prisoner swap? We'll take Corby, the Indonesians can have Pieta.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

The N-List

National's party list comprised of electorate candidates and quota filling meat puppets has been released. I'm glad to see Georgina Te Heuheu has been moved up from her provisional postion of below 25 to 19th on the list, still, she was ranked 6th in 2002. Oddly though, National has ranked Tau Henare formerly of NZ First, Mauri Pacific and the 'tight five' at #29 above new golden boy Alan Peachey at #30 (down from #18 in '02) and former Wellington Mayor Mark Blumsky at #36. Granted, Blumsky should win Wellington Central and Peachey will win Tamaki easily, but isn't this the type of 'preferential treatment for Maori' Don Brash was complaining so bitterly about in 2004? It will be interesting to see whether Henare is ranked above those two in 2008, that's if he's still a member of the National Party by then.
The odd thing about the party list system is the indirect consequences if can have on the consitituency electorate races. In the trophy seat of Wellington Central Labour's Marion Hobbs resides comfortably at number 9 on the Labour list, so no matter what, she is safe (and virtually unaccountable to the voters) , whereas Mark Blumsky the National candidate is buried at 36 on the Nats list, so winning Wellington Central is his only realistic hope. To the undecided "centre" voter, the question about the Wellington Central race has now become "Do you like Mark Blumsky?"
Another interesting foilble is that a vote for Marion Hobbs in Wellington Central could, somewhat perversly become a vote for Tau Henare. Henare is ranked at #29 on National's list. Given that National will pick up at least 4-5 seats to add to their current 21 electorate seats, that leaves around 10 or 11 list seats to fill their likely allocation of 36-37 MPs with Henare being the probable tenth MP coming off that list. But if Blumsky were to win Wellington Central that would take away one list MP from National, possibly Mr Henare.
Constituency races in the MMP-era are close to meaningless in affecting the national result of the election, but they do give voters a choice in the person they want to represent them in parliament, rather than strictly voting along party lines. So, surely for most Wellington voters, having two MPs on both sides of the house representing the electorate would be better than one?

Monday, May 23, 2005

Now, Where was I?

The blog-peon stumbles in, dusty and disheveled
"So, uh, what did I miss?"

"Er, let's see, A mad cow hoax which gave the media foot in mouth disease, the mpaa closing down your favourite television torrent site, outrage at the ineptitude of the Auckland White pages, a Hide-Collins-Benson-Pope BDSM three-way, the death of a Ching, the still-birth of a budget and Alison Mau tripping out on Charge pills."

"Damn, I'd haved loved to have seen that! Ali Mau on drugs that is, not Judith Collins with a tennis ball stuck up her ass"

"It was good, journalistic credibilty evaporating faster than Darren McDonald smoking a point, the best part being when she was tripping out over Windows Media Player visualisations, still, she'll no doubt be up for one of the 654 Qantas Media awards next year"

"Did we win any awards?"

"Yes! We won the "Best green coloured opinion website that updates every 16 days" and "Friend of a valued sponsor" awards. If it wasn't for ONE Glennie that "Right Place at the Right Time" award would have been ours..."

"At least the death of 150,000 people wasn't in vain, it'll really do wonders for her career"

"Hopefully she'll ditch the specs, get some contact lenses and come back to NZ to do the weather instead of the fat wooden Maori guy. He's really really bad. Not quite Moon TV level bad but still pretty damn awful. I do have one piece of good news for you though, TVNZ are now showing Trailer Park Boys on Thursday nights"

"Fucken A"

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Doing it for the Kids

The positively redundant Ministry of Youth Development as part of 'Youth Week 2005' have issued a 'guide to youth language', and from looking at the list of terms this is clearly the language that any socially confused twelve year old would use. Ironically "Shattering negative stereotypes" is the theme of Youth Week, which I suppose must mean that NZ children talking like guttural street urchins is a positive stereotype.
Their guide doesnt even make sense anyway , the definitions are all wrong and lack the proper context, however, we have acquired the original version of the guide before it was all skuxed up by the Ministry.

PhraseMeaning
AightNew title replacing 'Minister' of Youth Affairs. Steve Maharey will now be referred to as "his Right Honorable Aightness of Youth Affairs" or alternatively "the Aight for the youff"
Bay, bro, cuzI am John Carter or Lindsay Perigo
Bling blingDon Brash's 'pet name' for Katherine Rich
BreakingThe final year of a junior coalition party's term in Government
ChurTo cheer for an opponent surreptiously e.g. "Muriel Newman is really churring for John Tamihere"
DeejayingTo spin bad press at such high speed that one ignores reality e.g. "Despite the drop in student allowance numbers Labour is working for students"
Diss’To urinate in a hotel corridor - e.g "I was so drunk I could barely stand, I had to diss up against the wall"
Dope, gravy, mint, wickedGreen Party Law and Order Policy
EmceeingMichael Cullen delivering a trite one-liner in parliament
Fo’ shizzle ma nizzleFormer Saddam-era Iraqi Minister found in New Zealand after having his name revealed by Winston Peters
Ginga, morangeLockwood Smith's original hair colour
HellaThe Prime Minister of New Zealand
Hook upTo fraternise with the media over a topical issue, usually initated by "hollering" to the press with a "shout-out" or "press release"
JokesEquivalent of “just kidding”. Often used to avoid taking responsibility - e.g. Monday - "I have full confidence in the Police and the 111 service" Tuesday - "Jokes!"
KewlContact Energy's new 'cleaner sounding' brandname for coal
Klingon, blenderAn outsider or parasite who does not belong to a certain social cluster and attempts to live off its' host without being noticed e.g. Jim Anderton
LatersPaul Holmes
MehExpression of indifference used by Labour Maori MPs in reaction to Foreshore and Seabed Legislation. e.g. "Why are you voting for a law that 80% of the people who voted for you oppose?" " umm, err, meh?"
Moked, ownedBeing forcibly removed from one's own party, e.g "ACT legally moked Donna Awatere-Huata" "JT nearly got owned"
PeepsGraham Capill's future cellmate
PhatThe new 'Butch'
Phat-phreeNZ First's token faux-Asian candidate
PlayerSomeone involved with many people and “playing the scene” e.g. Jonathan Hunt
SkuxTo perform poorly in a Ministerial role without actually performing at all e.g. "George Hawkins skuxed up again"
Trippin’An Investigate interview subject
True datThe next target in Jim Anderton's press-release based 'war on soft drugs and alcohol that tastes like ice cream'
WackTo use Trevor Mallard as a blunt weapon with intent to injure