The Jackal
 


13 Apr 2022

National flounders over Three Waters reforms

Clearly the National Party thinks it’s onto a winner with its campaign against the Government's Three Waters legislation. They’ve even been promoting the current leader, Christopher Luxon (who in 2018 appeared to endorse the very same reforms he now opposes) with photo opportunities of him putting up anti Three Waters billboards.

The problem for National and Luxon in particular is that barely a week goes by without another report concerning sewage overflowing onto New Zealand streets or towns having to cope with unsafe tap water.

What Luxon doesn't seem to realise is that Kiwis have been getting very sick and even dying because of their contaminated drinking water. But instead of National providing any real policy ideas about how to actually fix things, Luxon is busy making a fool of himself by splashing out on stupid hoardings for an election that could still be 21 months away. In fact the blue "teams" promise to repeal Three Waters and effectively replace it with nothing is likely to turn away National's potential audience during the campaign proper.

That’s why the Labour Government and their Three Waters legislation will become the default choice for most voters. Not because it’s particularly imaginative or transformative, but because there isn't even a remote sign of the opposition providing any alternative policy to ensure people have adequate and safe water supplies.


Last Friday, RNZ reported:

National pledges to repeal three waters legislation if elected

National is stepping up its campaign against the government's contentious three waters legislation, as people fed up with a Canterbury town's dirty drinking water plead for a quick fix.

The Opposition party has nailed a billboard in the Waimakiriri district advertising its pledge to repeal the laws, under which the government would take control of drinking, waste and storm water services and assets from local councils.

In the neighbouring Selwyn district, water the colour of weak tea still runs from the taps in the town of Springfield.

A father, who did not want to be named, said the water was so discoloured his family had not filled a glass for months.

"You wouldn't boil it and drink it, it still remains tea-coloured. We've been drinking out of plastic bottles for months," he said.

 

Whilst their negative campaign might appeal to some farmers and a few of their drunken Councillor mates, it’s unlikely to elicit much if any significant support from the wider community. This is because the vast majority of Kiwis realise that something needs to be done about our dilapidated water infrastructure.



By claiming that cash strapped Councils will suddenly do their jobs properly if the public campaigns for improved water infrastructure, Luxon has badly misread the room. Not only is he choosing another hill to die on, the optics of Luxon promoting a do nothing strategy while there are reports of unsafe tap water making people unwell is terribly revealing. In fact it's a misstep of monumental proportions.

If Luxon and his advisors cannot even keep up to date with current affairs, particularly when we're talking about the health and wellbeing of the population, how exactly can they be trusted to run the entire country? The obvious answer is that they aren't an effective or trustworthy opposition and wouldn't be an effective or trustworthy government either.

27 Mar 2022

Luxon keeps contradicting himself

What is it about right wing leaders thinking they can fit their narrative to whatever audience is in front of them? It’s almost like they aren’t aware of how modern day reporting works. Or perhaps they think they can simply bluff their way out of any given sticky situation they’ve created for themselves.

A prime example of this was on display last Monday when newbie National Party leader Christopher Luxon told a predominantly right wing audience that he would get tough on people he described as bottom feeders, namely beneficiaries who’re living in state houses. I’m sure this beneficiary bashing went down well amongst Newstalk ZB listeners, but if Twitter and Facebook are anything to go by the majority of people who keep an eye on politics these days certainly didn’t think his comments were appropriate.

Luxon then did a backflip during an interview with John Campbell where he attempted to explain away his divisive comments. He even claimed that he was all for increasing benefits to ensure people reach their potential. However, after listening to Luxon’s initial interview and considering his previous fervour while attacking impoverished Kiwi’s, Luxon’s claim that he now cared about “bottom feeders” clearly needs to be taken with a grain of salt.


On Wednesday, 1 News reported:


Christopher Luxon explains his 'bottom feeding' comments

Breakfast's John Campbell questioned Luxon about his comments in the bulk of their interview - nine minutes to be exact - on Wednesday.

In part of his interview with Kerre McIvor on Monday, Luxon had said: "I've got to be honest to all of your listeners. This is a fantastic country. This is the best country on planet Earth, but we have to determine we want to realise our maximum potential economically, socially and environmentally, and we want to be a place everyone can flourish. And if you want to have a go and you want to make something of yourself, we don't just do bottom feeding and just focus on the bottom, we focus on people who want to be positive and ambitious and aspirational and confident, right?"

The comments made it to Twitter and Reddit.

Asked first off who he has aspiration for and who he wants to lift up, Luxon responded: "My general theme is look I think we've been playing quite a small, negative, inward, fearful game and I think New Zealand is a place that's about confidence, ambition, aspiration, going forward. I'm ambitious for every New Zealander. I want all New Zealanders to be able to flourish in this country. I want everybody to realise their potential and that's what we're here to do."

Replaying Luxon his Newstalk ZB comments, Campbell then asked him what he meant by "bottom feeding".

"My general theme there, John, was exactly what I just talked about before which was saying - look we want to have confidence, ambition, aspiration for all New Zealanders and we've got to celebrate that. It's important we celebrate that. What I was meaning there was the fact that the reality is we actually believe and want to help everybody who's doing it tough in this country as well and so we've got to care deeply about everybody."


The problem for Luxon and the National Party is that he’s obviously losing his credibility by explaining. Lux Flakes might be getting a bit of media attention, but he’s also offending both right and left wing voters with such mealy-mouthed indecisive statements. Instead he should stick to one statement concerning what the National Party would stand for under his leadership and not attempt to back track all the time.

We witnessed Luxon doing exactly the same thing in regards to his comments about wanting women who require abortions to be jailed and treated like murderers. After a backlash, he then miraculously changed his fundamentalist belief system. It would therefore appear that the new blue “team” leader is attempting to play both sides of the field and failing miserably! Similarly, John Key would often score own goals by using this dishonest tactic while trying to illicit public support. In fact this questionable method was a major component leading up to Key’s resignation and National losing the 2017 election.

So instead of making contentious claims or aspirational statements that he later sweeps into the bin, Luxon should come up with some actual budgeted policy ideas that don’t simply copy policy the Labour Government has already, or intends to, announce. We need to see a plan of how the National Party proposes to govern New Zealand for them to be considered a viable alternative. Because at the moment all we’re hearing are the unreliable words of someone who appears to be a complete political novice.

21 Mar 2022

Remembering SiBri


It probably won’t even register with most Kiwis that Simon Bridges, who was once leader of the National Party, has resigned. Even with a biased mainstream media promoting him above his station and numerous scandals besmirching his career, Bridges was a largely nondescript and forgettable MP. I mean what exactly did this guy achieve while in power or opposition? Anything? He certainly failed to build anywhere near enough bridges, both figuratively and metaphorically speaking. That’s why it would be beneficial to remind readers about who exactly Simon Bridges was and what he truly stood for.

Bridges, who has cited family reasons and commercial opportunities for taking the wind out of National’s sail by quitting Luxon’s inner circle, is perhaps best known for his role in a donations scandal of biblical proportions. It was one thing to deny his involvement, but a recording of him giving instructions to former National Party MP Jamie-Lee Ross in order to hide very large bribes from Chinese businessmen who were trying to buy influence in New Zealand is undeniably compelling evidence. The High Court hasn’t as yet laid down exactly when the next hearing is to take place, but it’s likely that Bridges is leaving politics precisely because of his involvement in that blatant attempt to hide large sums of foreign money from public and official scrutiny.

However you can kinda understand why he would leave anyway, even without the high court hearing likely to tarnish his career even further and again thrust National into the limelight for all the wrong reasons. Bridges recently lost a leadership challenge to the very unpopular Judith Collins, who predictably sunk National with her very nasty temperament. He also came up short after Crusher had to bow out because of National’s disastrous polling. Despite his right wing credentials, Bridges was forced to capitulate to the untested Christopher Luxon, obviously because he wouldn’t be accepted by National’s mainly white middle class (read overtly and covertly racist) voters. Being that Bridges has way more political experience, this must have been a bitter pill for him to swallow on both a personal and professional level.

But it’s not just the fact that Bridges has been tripped up by his own party. The mainstream media had great expectations that he would one day be able to challenge Jacinda Ardern in the countries most important popularity contest. However, sadly for National, even though he’s clearly a true believer in the right wing’s modus operandi, namely benefiting the rich at other people’s expense, Bridges has fallen well short of the hurdle. This is despite the MSM giving him ample opportunity to try and promote himself as a respectable and upstanding family man. Despite media bias, Bridges has often been his own worst enemy when it comes to public attention. Journalists gave him more than enough rope and he invariably used it to choke his own political career.

What Bridges fails to understand is that even many so-called mum and dad investors will frown upon his blatant greed. We witnessed Bridges’ greed first hand when it was revealed that he wasted hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars throwing elaborate parties for his oil and gas industry mates. We again witnessed his greed when he heavily invested public money into polluting industries at the environments expense. Bridges also opposed the now successful clean car subsidy, because he was in the pocket of the oil barons. Then there were the substantial bribes from Chinese businessmen that Bridges blatantly tried to cover up. All this paints a very compelling picture of a not to be trusted politician, a picture that not even the most talented National Party propagandist could erase from the public’s consciousness.

We were also enlightened to the extent of Bridges’ dishonesty when he claimed to have witnessed a gang fight at Tauranga hospital; something that both the Police and CCTV footage categorically proved was completely untrue. It was a marvel to watch him keep digging like there was no tomorrow. Likewise, we couldn’t believe the bogus arguments Bridges came up with while trying to defend his opposition to a ban on conversion therapy. Despite his youngish age, the out-dated and washed up politician has absolutely no viable justification for such a backwards viewpoint. In fact to call his harmful belief system prehistoric is an insult to dinosaurs.

So after 14 years of obfuscation and legislative blunders in Parliament, Simon Bridges has worn out his credibility as both a politician and religious leader. Everybody knows that God loves all creations, including those that don’t fit the conservative and idealistic viewpoint of ignorant fundamentalists like Simon Bridges. It’s therefore unlikely that we will hear much if anything more from the former MP for Tauranga, apart from a wee High Court reminder of his treasonous bribe taking that is...which is something all free thinking and honest Kiwis should be quietly chuffed about.

3 Mar 2022

The poo protest is over

It really does surprise me that nobody died in the Wellington riot yesterday. There were of course some significant injuries, but it’s testament to the New Zealand Police force’s tactical ability and professionalism plus a good amount of sheer luck that nobody needs to be laid to rest.

The riots have of course brought into question what many people believed in. Not only have long time freedom fighters on the left, some of whom protested during the Springbok Tour where actual Police brutality was dished out, been in support of dismantling the “freedom” encampment, many right wing journalists have now seen the result of their biased reporting against the Labour Government writ large across Parliaments lawn.

Let’s hope it’s a wake up call that they actually listen to.


Today, the NZ Herald reported:

Covid 19 Wellington protest: Riots, fire and violence as police end occupation

Andrew Coster told Mike Hosking police had tried to work with protest organisers but a lack of leadership and cohesion made this impossible.

"We were left with no option to do what we did yesterday to restore the site."

"I'm pleased that we've got to here. I never wanted it to end like that, but we did what we had to do."


Government politicians will also be doing some soul searching over the next few days, not least of all the Prime Minister. What many people don’t realise is that Jacinda Ardern truly believes in her ‘be kind’ moto. It’s not just a nice catch phrase for her.

So when the rabble first started gathering and then turned to serious acts of violence outside of Parliament, she would have been mortified that there were so many disaffected people braying at her door, some with literal pitchforks.


Because of the way the protest was conducted and concluded, other Politicians should now be questioning their actions as well, not least of all David Seymour and Winston Peters. They both knew that what the “freedom” convoy stood for was bogus, but decided to raise their profiles anyway and in so doing legitimised the anarchists. They then took to social media to regurgitate some of the propaganda they’d seen that they thought would sit well with their voter base.

Looking over at the mess left behind at Parliament grounds, Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson let out a heavy sigh.

"It's been an incredibly distressing time for Wellingtonians over the last three weeks - not only have they been harassed and spat at and bullied, but they've also seen the city that they love be trashed."

Robertson said we can never excuse what happened yesterday.

"It was appalling," he told Breakfast.


Most Kiwis who once agreed with the numerous causes the protesters apparently stood for will now be questioning that support. Nobody, apart from those who want to see Aotearoa destroyed, will be rejoicing at the chaos and mayhem that erupted in Wellington yesterday. The vast majority will be shocked and dismayed at the level of violence that was on display.

Clearly there are people with malignant intent towards this great country. Many have pointed out that much of the propaganda targeting the disaffected rioters has come from overseas. However it’s people operating within New Zealand that have propagated most of the propaganda...disinformation that has now resulted in widespread carnage.

Some have pointed at social media algorithms, but the truth of the matter is that brainwashing such a large number of Kiwis has only occurred because of a concerted and extensive campaign by a dedicated and large group of people, an operation that is ultimately designed to undermine our democracy.

But as a society, Robertson acknowledged more needed to be done to stop misinformation being spread in relation to Covid-19 and vaccines.

That included the Government working closely with some of the world's big social media sites to remind them of their responsibilities around such issues.


The information war is real and our intelligence systems have largely failed to curtail its more destructive effects. For instance, it’s terribly concerning (particularly after the Christchurch Mosque shootings) that white supremacists have been allowed to operate in plain site for such a long period of time against New Zealand’s best interests.

Some of these fanatics were even attempting to identify Police officers with the use of high-powered cameras during the Parliament riot. There is obviously only one reason they would want to gather such information, and it’s not good.

I would therefore urge anybody who might be targeted by such extremists to be extra careful about their security. The Parliament riot isn’t the end of their campaign against New Zealand. In fact it could just be the beginning.

18 Feb 2022

Parliament protest has dubious backers

It was concerning to see former National MP Matt King use the Parliamentary grounds “freedom” protest as a platform to launch his new political party yesterday.

Not only have many within the mainstream media been trying to legitimise the so-called anti-mandate protests, we now have another failed right wing politician siding with protestors who've been harassing school children and threatening to murder politicians.
 

Today, the NZ Herald reported:

Covid 19 Parliament anti-mandate protests: Former National MP Matt King confirms plans for new political party

King said the plans were still at the early stage, but those involved were "credible and have political experience". It also had financial support.

He would not say who those other people were, or whether they included former New Conservative leader Leighton Baker. Baker is one of those involved at the protest and seen as a leader of one of the protest groups.

"I believe there is a place in the market for a party that represents a lot of people that are not happy with what's happening at the moment," King said.

"None of the parties in the current political landscape provide a credible alternative to the status quo.

He said he had travelled to Wellington because he strongly opposed the vaccine mandates.

 

Act Party leader David Seymour has also tried to capitalise on peoples discontent by pretending to mediate for the Government. It’s a very fine line to tread. Seymour might be prepared to dance on the head of a pin to placate his white supremacist supporters, who also have links with the anti-Government protests, but thankfully he’s in a very small minority that won’t gain much traction with a majority of level headed voters in New Zealand.

Like the Maori Party, Seymour really needs to distance himself from the out-dated thinking and politicking of his political forbears.

In this regard the Prime Minister has made the right decision to keep her distance. Attempting to directly reason with protesters would only result in a spectacle, a debacle the mainstream media is clearly desperate for and has invariably been trying to instigate. It would also only harden the resolve and somewhat legitimise the protestors various causes. In fact they're unlikely to hear a word the PM says because most are currently too angry and/or deluded to be reasoned with.

Of course Trevor Mallard using a hose on protesters and playing loud music all night like a drunk neighbour wasn’t the right thing to do. This is exactly the unifying attention they needed to keep going. It confirmed their prejudices against the Government by providing an authority figure for them to hate. Mallard is clearly a part of the problem here and not the solution.

Speaking of solutions, what the Government should do is try to limit any further antagonism. They should also ensure that the protestors are provided with the basic necessities of life. Of course the Police need to ensure Wellingtonians aren't attacked and can go about their business. They should therefore be removing the most disruptive protestors when the opportunity arises. But moving protestors on with batons must not occur. Mallard also needs to be closed down to ensure he doesn’t meddle like a drunken buffoon anymore.


Today, Newshub reported:

The conditions of Speaker Trevor Mallard's cross-party offer to negotiate with protestors revealed

Parliament's Speaker Trevor Mallard has gained cross-party agreement on how to deal with the occupation of Parliament, drawing up terms on which politicians will engage.

The cross-party declaration, provided to parties on Thursday afternoon, is based on the premise that if the protestors occupying Parliament clear the streets, remove their tents and stop abusing people, politicians will talk with them.


So if the protestors go away the Government will talk with them? Honestly! If the actual Government doesn’t rein Mallard in soon, he will likely make things a lot worse. He is after all an aristocrat with anger management problems, so not exactly the best person to be engaging with derranged protestors he’s already antagonised.

Despite any immediate issues, the real solutions are of course long term. What we’re seeing here is a failure of our education systems, mental health services and misuse of social media. Firstly, the majority of those protesting clearly don’t have much ability to deduce the truth. Many also display various degrees of mental illness. Once things have deescalated the Police should contact the appropriate services for follow-up to ensure these people get the help they require.

However the main cause of these protests is disinformation. Not only have we seen the direct targeting of vulnerable Kiwis with the inappropriate use of our social media, the scope and sophistication of the misinformation campaigns clearly shows that they’re well funded.

The objective of course isn’t necessarily to end mandates or allow people more freedoms. In fact during the pandemic New Zealand has been one of the freest countries in the world. The true objective is to disrupt the Government to such a degree that they cannot achieve the social and economic change they're working towards. This would likely mean a more authoritative right wing government is elected.

It’s that fact alone and not just that many of these protestors are being obnoxious that should unify the left and everyday Kiwis, including many like myself who believe in peaceful protest, against the common enemy. Clearly the main enemy here isn’t the misguided people who’ve amassed at Parliament over the last week. Instead it's those who propagate disinformation in order to mislead the vulnerable.

Today, the Spinoff published a list of people and organisations who disseminate disinformation that has lead to the social unrest we're seeing at Parliament.

Figureheads and factions: the key people at the parliament occupation

A host of groups and views are contained in the ongoing protest in Wellington, and they don’t all get along. Who are they?



At one end of the spectrum of participants and supporters – both on-site and in the online groups that make up their circuitry and inspiration – are many who plausibly insist they are simply anti-mandate, and decry the impacts of the vaccination requirements on themselves and their families. It continues through swathes of people promoting anti-vaccine and “natural healing” balderdash, and to those who menace members of the public for wearing masks, and on it goes through to the most poisonous far-right extremists. A better word than spectrum, perhaps, is continuum, a chain of hands leading from decent people to would-be lynchers. The greatest worry for us all is participants moving the wrong way along that chain – the sight of a fertile recruitment ground for the ugliest, most hateful and dangerous people among us. It is not yet three years, after all, since a terrorist attack in Christchurch shook us from a complacent slumber.



What the numerous groups listed in Toby Manhire’s excellent article fail to comprehend is that New Zealand simply wouldn’t accept the overthrow of the Labour Government in this way. Disinformation campaigns might work to encourage the deluded, but using unjustified causes to try and get the people to storm Parliament en masse and install a regime of ragtag idiots simply won’t work. In fact it will likely illicit sympathy for Jacinda Ardern, who's been the main target for what is obviously misguided anger.

In my opinion, when you have people like Cameron Slater directly encouraging discontent and insurrection against the Government, you know that these protestors are on the wrong side of history. Clearly the spectacle of this propagandist blathering rubbish should be all they need to leave their encampment, which is likely to occur one way or the other in the not too distant future.

9 Feb 2022

Carl Loader - Arsehole of the Week

Warning! The topics in this post could be distressing to some readers.


There’s no question that New Zealand still has a major problem with suicide. Even with substantial government funding for mental health services and the Police being provided with more discretionary powers to not record certain deaths as suicides, the number of Kiwis being reported as taking their own lives has remained terribly high.

However, despite the difficulties associated with reducing those atrocious statistics, Government and public organisations must not be allowed to become complacent about nor accept that a large number of Kiwis are being allowed to fall through the cracks to such a degree that they’re choosing to end their own lives.

Furthermore, normalising suicide within our society must not be allowed to occur. In this regard, Aotearoa must not accept in any way shape or form a blasé approach to the issue. We certainly don’t want suicide to become a spectator sport either. But unfortunately that's exactly what has occurred within one company tasked with cleaning up the aftermath.


Yesterday, the Guardian reported:

New Zealand crime cleanup company investigated after posting graphic photos online

New Zealand’s justice ministry has launched an investigation into whether a crime scene cleaning company broke the law by posting images to its social media pages of cleanup sites – including, allegedly, images of suspected suicide sites and of human remains.

The story was first reported by RNZ, which found Christchurch company Crime Scene Cleaners had posted images to its Facebook and Instagram accounts – including graphic images of decomposing human remains, and images of cleanup work in the aftermath of suspected suicides.

New Zealand laws restrict the publication of details relating to suspected or confirmed suicides that suggest the method of death. A death may not be referred to as a suicide until the coroner has made that determination after a coronial investigation.


I would suggest that it's a breach of the law to post pictures of crime scenes and people’s deaths and call them suicides. Not just because the coroner needs to make a determination beforehand, but because it's an egregious breach of people’s privacy.


Yesterday, 1 News reported:

Cleaners post graphic crime scene photos on social media

Warning: Story contains references to suicide, sudden death and assault, and graphic details about human remains.

A New Zealand crime scene cleaning business used by publicly-owned organisations has been posting images of the aftermath of suspected suicides, attempted suicides, assaults, sudden deaths and domestic violence on social media.



When asked if the families connected to the trauma cleans were asked permission before photos were posted, Loader said for most family members "they wouldn't know because they haven't been on the scene".

"They wouldn't know what it was, what job it was."

He said "there have been several occasions where the people have given consent for them to be used" but "that was a long time ago".

In Loader's view, the company's social media posts weren't "really heavy-duty stuff".

"We just put the lighter work we do as to put anything really bad on there would be detrimental to everybody," he said.

Some people, however, had commented on the photos, saying they were triggering.

Other online commenters have questioned how disturbing photos came up in their newsfeeds.

Loader said, "If you don't like it, don't look".

When told such posts could appear on a Facebook user's news feed (unless the user had already blocked the account's posts, or the user was under 18) even if they didn't follow the account, he said he was sure Facebook was policing it.

"If it was something of a really bad nature, I'm sure Facebook or some other department would contact us," he said.



What on earth would Carl Loader believe constitutes “something of a really bad nature" if these photos of people’s death scenes being posted online doesn't qualify?

By claiming that the families affected wouldn’t view these photos and that it’s someone else’s job to police his actions, the Crime Scene Cleaning co-owner and manager has cemented his place in history as a complete arsehole!

After posting some photos, the business commented underneath, offering criticisms of caregivers, government services, and people linked to cleans the business had done.

One comment in November 2020 called homeless people "lazy "f******".

Another in June 2020 called some tenants "feral savages".

Asked if such comments were appropriate, when the business has contracts with central and local government-led organisations, Loader said, "We need to encourage public awareness of how we're living".



Carl Loader and his sick employees clearly do not need to post pictures of murder and suspected suicide scenes to “encourage public awareness” of how they’re living. A public forum is not the place for cleanup workers to process their issues. They certainly shouldn’t be trying to blame the victims either, some of whom were homeless at the time of their deaths.

In my opinion, attributing blame solely to the people who commit suicide is half the problem. Many suicides occur because of circumstances well outside of the victim’s control, which makes such despicable views highly damaging, particularly when we need to try and address the root causes that lead to people committing suicide.

To insult the victims of suicide and retraumatise their families with online posts that amount to saying ‘they deserved to die because they were homeless’ is a big part of the problem. In fact this type of mentality and lack of empathy is a contributing factor leading to New Zealand’s terribly high suicide rate.

Unless as a nation we address that dysfunctional mentality, we will never reduce the number of Kiwis taking their own lives.


RNZ also asked if he thought the business' posts could have breached suppression laws and confidentiality policies during police and coronial investigations.

Although Loader said he wasn't "really familiar" with what Crime Scene Cleaners' was putting on Facebook, he was confident police would "definitely" know.

"They haven't told me they're aware of it but obviously they would, they would look at it."

One woman told RNZ she discovered photos of her father's home on Crime Scene Cleaners' Facebook page last year.

He had a hoarding problem and when he died, she brought in Crime Scene Cleaners to clear his home.

She was billed more than $10,000.

The woman said the house was "completely" identifiable in the pictures - there were even photos of her as a girl, on the mantlepiece, in the shots.

She said she never gave permission for photos to be taken or posted, and there was no mention of the business using photos for marketing purposes in the terms of trade she signed and provided to RNZ.

When the house went on the market, people recognised the property from the pictures online, she said.

She was already "incredibly stressed" mourning her father and arranging his funeral, and the photos were "devastating on another level".

She thought Loader's argument - that families wouldn't be able to identify photos connected to their loved ones - was "bullshit".

"It's such a weak, weak excuse for doing something bad. The photo should not be public anyway. You're defending the defenceless."


It’s that attempt to defend the indefensible, just as much as the original crime of posting people’s incredibly private information online, that means Carl Loader wins this week’s Arsehole Award. The families affected by his contemptible actions should sue his arse into oblivion.


Where to get help

Lifeline (open 24/7) - 0800 543 354
Depression Helpline (open 24/7) - 0800 111 757
Healthline (open 24/7) - 0800 611 116
Samaritans (open 24/7) - 0800 726 666
Suicide Crisis Helpline (open 24/7) - 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO). This is a service for people who may be thinking about suicide, or those who are concerned about family or friends.
Youthline (open 24/7) - 0800 376 633. You can also text 234 for free between 8am and midnight, or email talk@youthline.co.nz
0800 WHATSUP children's helpline - phone 0800 9428 787 between 1pm and 10pm on weekdays and from 3pm to 10pm on weekends. Online chat is available from 7pm to 10pm every day at www.whatsup.co.nz.
Kidsline (open 24/7) - 0800 543 754. This service is for children aged 5 to 18. Those who ring between 4pm and 9pm on weekdays will speak to a Kidsline buddy. These are specially trained teenage telephone counsellors.
Your local Rural Support Trust - 0800 787 254 (0800 RURAL HELP)
Alcohol Drug Helpline (open 24/7) - 0800 787 797. You can also text 8691 for free.