The Jackal: May 2017

31 May 2017

Noel Hilliam - Asshole of the Week

New Zealand is a culturally diverse country with a fantastic melting pot of different ethnicities. It would be nice then if our unique differences could be celebrated instead of routinely insulted by a bunch of intellectually challenged racists!

Yesterday, Stuff reported:

A Northland man is under investigation by Heritage New Zealand for tampering with historic burial sites

A self-proclaimed historian who has repeatedly claimed Maori were not the first inhabitants of New Zealand is being investigated for allegedly causing damage to archaeological sites.

Heritage New Zealand confirmed it will investigate Noel Hilliam for allegedly taking human remains without following correct protocols.

The Northland man recently claimed a race of White Celts pre-dated Maori and said he had found remains in what he called hangi pits as proof.

Such an obvious contradiction. The Celts boiled their food in large cauldrons or roasted meat on a spit over a central fire. They didn’t use hangi, which is something any good historian should know.

He said a visiting Scottish pathologist had confirmed his claims but also told Radio New Zealand that person had since died and wouldn't be available for interviews.

His most recent claims have been rubbished by the scientific community but were reported by his local newspaper.

A pathological liar more like. Clearly Noel Hilliam is just another racist prick! He is simply using the pretext of scientific study to promote his own bigoted views and easily disproven bullshit!

The problem really is that there are far too many morons like Noel Hilliam in New Zealand who will believe this old white guy's lies! Unfortunately they're often given way too much oxygen by the mainstream media.

So for being a blatant racist and trying to rewrite history, Noel Hilliam wins this week’s Asshole Award. Let’s hope this is the last we hear from the likes of him.

30 May 2017

MI5 failed to stop Manchester bomber

Today, Stuff reported:

Missed chances to catch Manchester bomber Salman Abedi will be investigated the Home Secretary said as it was claimed that US officials warned MI5 that he was planning an attack.

As the security services faced growing questions over the failure to prevent Abedi from killing 22 people in the Manchester Arena, Amber Rudd said that whether there were "signals" that were not picked up on would be examined.

Despite the terror threat being reduced from critical to severe on Saturday, she confirmed that members of Abedi's terror network could still be at large.

She spoke after claims that the FBI had told MI5 earlier this year that Abedi was part of a north African terror cell based in Manchester looking to launch an attack.

Why didn’t MI5 act on the intelligence? They could have prevented this terrible attack.

US federal agents had been monitoring Abedi since last year and had passed on information from Libya and from intercepting his communications, it was said.

"Following this US tip-off, Abedi and other members of the gang were scrutinised by MI5. It was thought at the time that Abedi was planning to assassinate a political figure.

MI5 thought Abedi was going to assassinate a political figure, but just let him gather the items he needed to make a bomb anyway? Unbelievable!

I wonder who Abedi’s political target was or if he actually had one. Perhaps MI5’s failure to properly act on intel to stop Abedi was because of who they thought his target was?

"But nothing came of this investigation and, tragically, he slipped down the pecking order of targets," a source told The Mail on Sunday.

Abedi was also reported to authorities by residents at least five times in five years.

Reported five times to authorities and they did nothing! It appears that Theresa May's police funding cuts did in deed put Manchester and national security at risk.

Clearly English authorities could have acted on intelligence and therefore prevented the deaths of 22 innocent people. Why they didn’t should be the topic of a thorough inquiry.

29 May 2017

Lack of Brexit virus coverage

You’ve really got to wonder why the government would increase the risk of people getting Hepatitis E from imported pork products, being that HEV can cause serious illness and even death.

On Saturday, the NZ Herald reported:

Brexit virus in pork could already be in New Zealand

In Britain they're calling it the "Brexit virus", a potentially deadly bug linked to pork and smallgoods that has caused people to fall ill, some seriously.

The implications for New Zealand are difficult to gauge but the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) is warning people to cook pork products thoroughly.

The virus, a mutant strain of hepatitis E (HEV), has infected pig herds in various European countries including France, Holland, Denmark and Germany.

New Zealand's pork farmers this week expressed alarm that 65,760 tonnes of pig meat imported into the country every year could threaten the local industry.

Besides the NZ Herald article there was little other coverage. Why the MSM haven't done their jobs properly and informed the public of the risk is beyond me. Hepatitis E is a serious illness after all and any risk to the general population should be widely reported on.

The National led government was warned about the dangers of imported pork products ages ago. They chose not to heed that advice and now we have situations where consumers can no longer trust the pork they want to buy. This will be bad for the entire pork industry as a whole, which is perhaps a reason for the lack of coverage.

If I was a New Zealand pork farmer I would be livid! Not only did the government ignore the industries concerns, the imported pork products have eaten into Kiwi profits and the risk of consumers getting hepatitis E has undoubtedly put more people off eating pork in general.

If a disease like HEV is found to be in lots of imported products and somehow spreads into New Zealand's pigs, there’s a risk it could shut down the entire pork industry here. Clearly National have learnt nothing from the foot and mouth disease outbreaks that crippled the beef industry worldwide.

As usual MPI is downplaying people's valid concerns by incorrectly claiming that the Hepatitis E virus was already in New Zealand pork products and people should just cook their pork thoroughly. That's a bit like saying it's OK with people having to boil their water all the time. What a complete joke of a government.

28 May 2017

A way forward on the vaccination debate

I can see why people have formed strong beliefs for and against the use of vaccines. On one hand you have people suffering preventable diseases and on the other you have people suffering from prescribed medications. In this post I will explore some of the reasons why vaccination is a good and bad idea.

In my opinion, the people currently hollering the loudest are perhaps the worst suited to be promoting or campaigning against vaccines. Many medical professional's are clearly in the pocket of big pharmaceutical companies and it’s likely that the money and perks they receive has clouded their judgment.

Likewise, some anti vaccination campaigners have a financial vested interest in promoting alternative products and sometimes base their arguments on incorrect information.

One of the loudest campaigners for vaccination is Dr Lance O’Sullivan. I don’t mean to be critical of the New Zealander of the year winner, but he simply shouldn't have approached the debate with such anger nor claimed that there’s been a noticeable drop in immunisation rates in Northland this year because of the anti-vaccination movement.

 Yesterday, One News reported:

The anti-vaccination film Vaxxed which has caused an uproar this week isn't turning people away from immunisation, according to the Immunisation Advisory Centre.

The Immunisation Advisory Centre believes the film screenings will have little impact.
"We have no evidence in New Zealand that this movie is turning anybody away from immunisation," said Dr Nikki Turner of the centre.

"What we find is that people just get their entrenched positions. So somebody that didn't support the New Zealand immunisation program in the first place feels very good about this movie."

Within reason, O’Sullivan should of course be allowed to say whatever he wants to, just like the anti vaccination campaigners. Clearly wanting to ban a movie just because people don’t agree with what it says is preposterous! It would be a clear breach of the right to free speech and shows that certain people have learnt nothing from history.

Likewise, the people who’re talking about taking away people’s right to choose if they or their children are vaccinated need to have their heads read. Furthermore, naming and shaming people's children who aren't vaccinated isn’t a practical solution to reducing preventable diseases through vaccination. These are not acceptable arguments to be having in a democratic society people.

Despite the screaming match of a debate the benefits of some vaccines cannot be ignored. Vaccines in general, and it seems most arguments concerning this topic are very generalised, have saved many lives and the pros of using vaccines intelligently do in fact outweigh the cons.

Having said that, the danger of some vaccination products causing adverse side effects, some of them very serious, is real and shouldn’t be ignored. What hasn’t been publicly acknowledged by much of the medical fraternity in New Zealand is that vaccinations aka biologics are the most recalled product of any type of drug currently on the market.

A company on a voluntary basis usually removes problematic vaccines from the market. However, recalls also occur because of a lack of proper drug testing before the product is released. Sometimes the percentage of adverse side effects in the general population is different to the test group and is no longer acceptable. When a product has been shown to have serious adverse side effects such as seizures or death that violate current laws and FDA regulations, authorities will usually remove it. The pro vaccination campaigners who’re trying to paint all vaccine as safe for everybody shouldn't be ignoring these cold hard facts.

There is no question that some people have valid reasons for not using vaccines. In fact the US federal agency Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that some people shouldn’t use certain vaccines. This advice actually applies to every vaccine currently on the market and is why people’s right to choose shouldn’t be removed. Simply put, all vaccines aren’t safe for everybody.

Best practice would be that people should be educated and not feel pressured into being vaccinated without having the opportunity to learn about whether the particular vaccine being promoted by their doctor is right for them and safe for their children. In respect to this, drug companies should not be allowed to control the information that is provided.

Sure, there will be a small amount of people who miss out on beneficial vaccines, but there will also be less adverse reactions through a blanket approach and therefore less outcry against vaccination in general. The upshot is that you simply cannot fix the growing amount of dysfunction surrounding health issues related to poverty in New Zealand by ever increasing levels of vaccination. There are far better long-term solutions to our diabolical and growing rates of preventable diseases.

26 May 2017

National ignores prisoner voting rights

You might recall the National party introducing the Electoral (Disqualification of Sentenced Prisoners) Amendment Bill in 2010 to take away prisoners’ right to vote.

Apparently their justification for the stupid law change was that people who're serving a jail sentence had somehow breached their social contract FFS!

Despite a clear majority of submissions against the law change and legal advice that said such a change was highly questionable under section 7 of the Bill of Rights Act 1990, the government brought the law into effect anyway.

It’s little wonder then that National putting an end to prisoner’s voting has also been found wanting by the Court of Appeal.

Today, The NZ Herald reported:

Court upholds ruling on 'inconsistent' prisoner voting ban

A decision labelling a ban on prisoners voting a human rights breach has been upheld in the Court of Appeal.

Parliament passed a law to prevent all prisoners from voting in 2010. Previously, only those jailed for more than three years were unable to vote.

Long-time prisoner Arthur Taylor and four others successfully sought a High Court "Declaration of Inconsistency" in 2015, saying extending the ban to all prisoners infringed the right to vote in the Bill of Rights Act.

The Crown then asked the Court of Appeal to overturn that declaration, but in a judgment released today, the appeal was dismissed.

Once again the National led government is wasting public money and precious court resources fighting against the law instead of just doing what’s right.

The declaration alone does not mean Parliament must repeal the ban - the High Court previously noted that even where it finds Parliament has placed unjustified limits on rights, it still has to apply that law.

In that decision, Justice Paul Heath said the purpose of the declaration was to send a formal message that the law was "inconsistent with a fundamental right".

OMG! Finally the Court of Appeal gets something right. Read the full decision here (PDF).

It’s not just a fundamental right that prisoners be allowed to vote, it’s also a legal right that would be beneficial to our democratic process in general. The Bill of Rights is a legally binding act after all.

People in prison are already isolated away from family and society. By taking away their right to vote the Crown is effectively further isolating prisoners and ensuring many don’t give a damn about what’s happening in the real world.

By isolating prisoners away from politics the government is assuring more releasees won’t care about who’s in power and simply fail to participate in local and general elections. This dynamic is assuredly contributing to our very low voter turnout in New Zealand.

It’s doubtful such considerations or Court of Appeal decisions will change the never-ending political fantasy that tough on crime policy is going to make New Zealand a better place though.

Consecutive governments are clearly ideologically blinded by their own lock em up and throw away the key rhetoric… and I’m sure this election campaign will be no bloody different.

Change the god damn blasphemy law

There’s no doubt that a clear majority of New Zealander's won’t mind if the blasphemy law is changed. Like our so-called representatives, most people probably weren’t even aware that they were breaking the law, often on a weekly if not daily basis, by uttering profanities.

Keeping the blasphemy law on the books while the government runs around in circles is just stupid! It's a pitiful decision that will only waste time and money. But don’t tell that to the decrepit old fools in the out-dated National party.

On Wednesday, Stuff reported:

Good heavens! Blasphemy law remains in New Zealand after National and Maori Party vote down repeal

New Zealand's blasphemy law will remain after the National and Maori parties voted against removing it (file photo).

OMG, could this be true? It's still illegal to blaspheme in New Zealand.

Parliament had the opportunity to remove decades-old anti-blasphemy laws but, heaven's above, bailed out on Tuesday night.

Labour MP Chris Hipkins introduced an amendment to remove anti-blasphemy laws but both the National Party and the Maori Party voted against throwing it out of the Crimes Act.

So much for the current government standing for less bureaucracy then.

It's understood National changed its mind about dealing with the law quickly and with the help of the Maori Party stopped it going through.

Instead, the government wanted to go through the process of select committee and give the public the opportunity to submit on the potential law change.

The intention was to include the blasphemy law in the next Crimes Act Amendment Bill, which was being worked through but there was no specific timeframe for when it might make it to Parliament.

On Wednesday English said his preference was to "go through the proper process rather than just spontaneous amendments on the floor of the House".

Instead of removing the draconian blasphemy law, which is never applied, the National and Maori parties have ensured that Parliament’s time and resources are wasted on a debate that doesn’t need to occur.

Clearly the only people who will submit on keeping the law are religious nutters, who are obviously a small minority in New Zealand. They do not represent public opinion and the law should have simply been changed because it needs to be changed and will be changed.

National’s real reason for not supporting the law change? Well they just didn’t want to vote for an amendment put forward by a Labour MP, which just goes to show how childish and inefficient the current government is. What a bunch of policy wonks!

25 May 2017

New Zealand's worst real estate agent

Anybody who is lucky enough to have a deposit and are looking at getting onto the property ladder now have more than just high prices, P contamination and a lack of good houses to worry about. Homebuyers also need to be extra careful that the real estate agent they’re dealing with isn’t a fraudster.

Yesterday, the NZ Herald reported:

Real estate watchdog loses power to force police vetting checks on agents

The real estate watchdog has been stripped of its power to force agents to undergo police vetting checks after a precedent-setting test case by a Wellington agent.

Luke Domb challenged the Real Estate Agents Authority's (REAA) legal right to demand police vetting reports on new or existing agents as part of its licensing process, arguing the checks were unlawful and far more invasive than a criminal history check.

The vets are used by the authority to ensure agents are "fit and proper" to work in the industry and weed out anyone with serious criminal convictions or dishonesty offences.

You’ve really got to wonder at the justice system sometimes. By not requiring a proper vetting process for real estate agents, the judge has effectively ensured that there’s going to be even more homebuyers being ripped off.

The new rules will assuredly mean an increase in agents misleading clients and homebuyers. There will be more families getting a raw deal and potentially losing all their savings or ending up with a house that isn't habitable.

Furthermore, a lack of trust between agents, clients and house buyers is going to cause even more difficulties during the purchase process. This will inevitably mean agents are held in even less regard, and that’s why all honest real estate agents should oppose such a dumb ruling.

REAA should appeal the vetting ruling to the Supreme Court because it’s moralistically wrong and legally questionable. It appears that the befuddled judge just wanted more real estate cases before the court. Pretty short-sighted really!

Real estate agents are required to have impeccable credentials because they’re dealing with large amounts of money and people’s futures. Besides, there are already enough criminals in the real estate business.

Yesterday, the NZ Herald also reported:

West Auckland real estate agent Aaron Drever pleads for licence

A top real estate agent stripped of his licence last year is blaming attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and stomach stapling surgery for his litany of offending.

West Auckland-based Aaron Drever was once a high-flying seller, earning over $1 million a year in commission.

But he is now making a last-ditch attempt to save the only career he has known since he was 18.

Between 2010 and 2014 Drever, 33, notched up 11 separate formal complaints to the Real Estate Agents Authority (REAA) and was subject to nine separate disciplinary findings - a record that still stands nationwide.

Should we feel sorry for the dodgy Drever because he wasted some of his ill-gotten gains on a stomach stapling operation? No! Do we believe that his ADHD was the cause of him ripping people off? Hell no! This is the most ridiculous argument I’ve heard in a long time and Drever’s lawyer, Guyon Foley, is obviously just another money grubbing hack!

REAA should strongly oppose Drever becoming a real estate agent again because he’s clearly untrustworthy. You don’t get nine separate disciplinary findings without being a career criminal. Maybe he could become a used car salesman or enter into politics?

24 May 2017

Eruini Hawke - Hero of the Week

It’s becoming more apparent that the environment is struggling to cope with the effects of climate change. We’re now experiencing more severe weather patterns as was predicted, but at a much faster rate and greater intensity.

Despite there being more droughts and floods than ever before, the government’s response has been fickle and lacklustre to say the least.

Thankfully there are organisations in New Zealand who aren’t waiting for leadership from the National party. They’re getting on with the job of trying to build resilience into nature by planting trees and working to restore native ecosystems.

One such organisation working towards a greener future is Ngāti Whātua.

Yesterday, Native Affairs reported:

Ngāti Whātua has been working on an ecological restoration plan in the heart of Auckland city. The public has hardly noticed the green spaces being developed but the iwi doesn't care. Their plan is to restore their lands to what they once were, and - in doing so, prepare for the future impacts - of climate change.

Follow the above link for a video showing Ngāti Whātua’s excellent work.

As the Ecological Restoration Project Manager for Ngāti Whātua’s fantastic restoration project, Eruini Hawke is certainly a New Zealand Hero who is making the world a better place. His work will undoubtedly inspire others. Well-done mate!

How dead is the Great Barrier Reef?

Coral bleaching is the biggest threat to the Great Barrier Reef. But it's too early for obituaries.

Australia's Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef system in the world and the only living structure visible from space. Although ecosystem managers in Australia have worked hard to preserve the reefs, the past couple of decades have brought a new threat that can't be solved by any one country alone: human-induced global warming. Rising ocean temperatures have caused mass coral bleaching in coral reefs around the world, in every tropical ocean from the Caribbean to the South Pacific. This is now considered to be the biggest threat that coral reefs face, and they face many, including overfishing, pollution, storm damage, and invasive species.


Alex Swney laughing all the way to the bank

It's becoming more apparent that the parole board in New Zealand is a racist entity that ensures a disproportionate amount of Maori are incarcerated in our jails. That’s the inference given after reading about convicted fraudster Alex Swney’s early release.

Yesterday, the NZ Herald reported:

Parole Board poised to release disgraced former Heart of the City CEO Alex Swney from prison

Alex Swney, the disgraced former chief executive of Auckland's Heart of the City business organisation, is to be freed from prison after his first appearance before the Parole Board.

Swney, 59, was jailed for five years and seven months in June 2015 after being convicted of tax evasion and fraud involving more than $4 million over a decade.

4 million dollars over a decade… FFS! How does anybody even manage to get away with a crime that huge for so long?

Swney became eligible for parole on May 5, almost four years before his statutory release date of January 25, 2021.

I was under the impression that an inmate didn’t become eligible for parole until they’d served a third of their sentence… and whoever heard of a prisoner being released on their first parole hearing anyway? Would that have anything to do with Swney not being Maori perhaps?

While he was granted parole, Swney remains in prison and it is understood he will not be released until next month.

When he is released he will likely remain bankrupt for another year.

Which basically just means he can't run a business.

The married father-of-two pleaded guilty to charges laid by the Inland Revenue and Serious Fraud Office for offending that Judge Grant Fraser said involved "a gross breach of trust".

Among the offences were 229 false invoices used to obtain $2,527,005 from Heart of the City between February 2004 and October 2014. He was also charged with not paying taxes of $1,757,147.

Financial statements filed to the Incorporated Societies register showed that Heart of the City recovered just $353,623 of the $2,527,005 Swney obtained from it.

The parole board’s decision means Swney has effectively gotten away with embezzling over two million dollars just from the Heart of the City. What a fucking travesty! I mean who wouldn’t spend a year in jail for a couple of million dollars?

What makes this all the worse is that the parole board refuses to release on compassionate grounds solo Maori mums dying of cancer while a convicted fraudster like Alex fucking Swney who stole over $4 million gets a free pass.

Only when the parole board stops their clearly racist decision making process and actually applies our laws properly will the prison population decline. Until then we will just have to put up with white-collar fraudsters like Alex Swney being hit on the wrist with a wet bus ticket because of the colour of their skin.

Mike Hosking - Evil Cunt

Click to enlarge

Your decisions affect our future

These Kiwi Conservation Club kids have a message for the Government: “we need clean water, and so does nature. Your decisions affect our future.” If you agree with them, share this video. Clean rivers and lakes is about more than swimmability, and the time to act is now.

Katie Hopkins - Asshole of the Week

It's truly heart breaking to see the terrible images coming out of Manchester at the moment. Not only have 22 innocent people, some of them children, been killed in a senseless attack...the inevitable backlash by hate groups has targeted more innocent people just because they're Muslim.

You’ve really got to wonder therefore why the Islamic State terror group who claimed responsibility for the bombing would target a concert? The only thing they’ve ensured is further justification for Middle Eastern wars and perhaps the re-election of warmonger Theresa May.

In such times it’s important to keep a level head and not increase racial or religious tensions. Don't tell that to England’s PM though.  She's very busy at the moment gaining support for a more hard-line approach and is undoubtedly not interested in finding peaceful solutions to Middle Eastern conflicts, which are in fact the root cause of terrorism.

Unfortunately English television personality Katie Hopkins also didn’t get the memo.

Yesterday, the guardian reported:

Katie Hopkins reported to police after 'final solution' Manchester attack tweet

Complaints made to Metropolitan police amid widespread condemation following newspaper columnist’s now-deleted tweet

The newspaper columnist Katie Hopkins became the subject of a police review after the Manchester bombing on Monday, as questions were raised about the limits the press can go to when reporting the fallout from terrorist attacks.

Hopkins, who is employed by the Mail Online and LBC, was reported to the Metropolitan police for a tweet in which she called for a “final solution” as part of a longer anti-Muslim tirade.

The columnist quickly deleted the tweet, directed at the This Morning host Phillip Schofield, and posted an edited version after receiving widespread condemnation for repeating the Nazi term for the Holocaust.

The original tweet read: 

Katie Hopkins clearly doesn't have the level headedness an unbiased public figure requires. She has tried to incite hate against an ethnic group when most Muslims in England feel just as aggrieved by the cowardly attack as any other Englander.

Clearly political rhetoric and further violence is not the solution to the terrorism problem. Dialogue and peaceful negotiation, putting a halt to weapon supplies and political stability in the Middle East is the only way western countries like England will ever see an end to these horrible bombings.

Ugly old trolls like Katie Hopkins who actively incite racial hatred are a part of the terrorism problem. How many more innocent people are going to be beaten or killed because of idiots in places of power inciting violence? That's why Hopkins is this week's Asshole Award winner. This despicable hate merchant should be fired immediately.

23 May 2017

No investigations in election year

Oh dear! Not another case of potential serious fraud that the National government is refusing to investigate?

Yesterday, Stuff reported:

New Zealand Navy link to 'Fat Leonard' scandal

The Royal New Zealand Navy contracted services from a now-defunct overseas company whose director sparked one of the biggest corruption scandals in United States' navy history.

However the RNZN has reportedly said it won't be investigating its relationship with former Malaysian defence contractor Leonard Glenn Francis, who is awaiting sentencing after admitting bribery charges laid by US prosecutors.

Labour has said there was enough of a question mark for navy officials to launch a review of its relationship with Francis' company, but Prime Minister Bill English said "it's a matter for the navy".

You can understand why the Navy wouldn’t want to investigate. They have a vested interest in protecting their own after all. But Bill English saying there doesn’t need to be an investigation because he doesn't think anything is wrong is just a big fucking cop-out to try and save face in election year.

Labour's defence spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway said the RNZN should have a review of its relationship with GDMA to satisfy itself and New Zealand tax payers that everything was above board.

"I do think there should at least be a quick review of exactly how these decisions to work with this company were made," he said.

"The bribery that occurred between the company and the US Navy were for services which are very similar to the services the New Zealand navy were contracting for.

"I think there's enough of a question mark there. We're talking about taxpayers' money here."

While there was nothing to suggest anything untoward had happened, given the evidence seen in the US prosecution, it "certainly warrants a quick check" by the defence force, he said.

Damn right it does. So why haven’t we heard from the Taxpayer’s Union eh? We’re talking about over $700,000 of taxpayers’ money after all. As usual David Farrar over at Kiwibog is completely silent on anything that makes National look bad.

At a press conference on Monday, Prime Minister Bill English said he'd be "very surprised" if a public servant was involved in anything of the nature reported in the US.

Yeah! Because public servants in New Zealand never undertake serious fraud eh Bill? Just ask the whistleblower's the despicable Joanne Harrison got fired. What a prized plonker the PM is.

"It's a matter for the navy," he said.

"As I think we've said before, just because there's allegations, that doesn't automatically mean that something might have happened.

"Personally, from my understanding of how our procurement system works, I'd be very surprised if any public servant was involved in anything of that nature, but it's a matter for the navy to sort out."

How can the Navy claim there is no New Zealander’s involved in the fraud without even a cursory glance into the matter? They simply cannot and that makes their decision look like another cover-up!

The Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Defense Contract Audit Agency investigated over 200 people in the United States, including 30 officers.

With such in depth scrutiny and accountability in America you would expect the New Zealand counterparts to at least check through the Navy accounts with Fat Leonard’s company which amount to $710,235. After all, that’s not chump change people.

Without a proper in-depth investigation the public cannot have confidence that our Navy personnel weren’t involved in the huge international fraud. We cannot have confidence in our government to hold people accountable either.

By refusing to have any type of investigation, it appears National has instructed the Navy because they’re afraid of rocking the boat during election year... and just like the SAS raid in Afghanistan where innocent civilians were killed not being investigated, that my friends is entirely unacceptable!

22 May 2017

National useless on used tyres

You may have noticed that one of the biggest National party procrastinators of all time about environmental issues is Nick bloody Smith. Not only has this bullshit artist been the government’s propagandist when it comes to the housing crisis, the bad excuse for an environment minister is also the go to guy when it comes to our highly polluted waterways.

In election year it’s no surprise that the bold faced liar Smith is once again trumpeting National’s (non-existent) plan concerning the growing problem of what to do with all those used tyres.

On Saturday, Stuff reported:

NZ's tyre mountains keep growing in the absence of recycling scheme

Every year, New Zealand creates 5 million waste tyres, and every year 70 per cent of them end up in landfill, or unaccounted for. Ged Cann looks at why Kiwis are so bad at recycling tyres, and the fire and environmental risks that creates.

They're dotted around the country.

Pockets of land that house mountains of old, unwanted car and truck tyres. And the longer these millions of tyres lie there, the more dangerous they become, posing environmental and fire risks.

A plan to tackle the issue of waste tyres is slowly gathering pace, all while the pile of tyres grows.

Slowly being the operative word there. In fact glacial or non-existent might be better ways to describe the National led government’s lack of action.

With every year that passes without a comprehensive recycling regime, tens of millions of landfill or improperly stored tyres degrade so much that they can no longer be recycled, according to a key player in the industry.

Two years ago Environment Minister Nick Smith opened applications for funding grants to help companies find a viable solution, but he is still unable to give specifics of what recycling schemes might look like, or even when they might begin.

"Commercial negotiations are under way with grant applicants, and you can never be absolutely sure when agreement will be reached. Our best estimate is in the next two months," he said.

Two months eh? If you believe that I have a used car you might be interested in.

Contrary to Smith's rhetoric the Product Stewardship Foundation started working on their plan to recycle end of life tyres way back in 2011. Consultation happened during 2012 and implementation for a way to recycle the growing problem of waste tyres was meant to have started in 2013.

So how many years does a National led government need before they actually do something about all those used tyres?

The Ministry for the Environment released the Waste Tyres Economic Research report in 2014, revealing the sheer scale of the problem. Since then the number of vehicles on our roads has only increased.

The same report said investment in recycling is hampered by a limited market for recycled tyre products, and a lack of scale and funding.

What makes this all the worse is that National actively dismantled a plan that was meant to have started recycling used tyres in 2013 and then another in 2015. What a pack of dumb shits!

Its pretty obvious the mealy-mouthed Nick Smith doesn’t give a rat’s arse about protecting the environment. The current government is simply too busy trying to convince gullible reporters and the public that they’re doing something about the numerous environmental problems in New Zealand rather than actually working towards reducing pollution.

It will be a cold day in hell before a National led government implements any type of proper measures to reduce the amount of pollution going into our waterways. The used tyre issue is just one of many examples showing the only thing National really cares about is money and being re-elected.

19 May 2017

Turkish President Erdogan - Asshole of the Week

What on earth was President Erdogan thinking when he ordered an attack on peaceful protestors? Didn't he realise that what his bodyguards do behind closed doors in Turkey isn't acceptable on United States' soil?

Today, The NZ Herald reported:

US officials strongly criticised the Turkish government after video appeared to show its president's security forces pushing past police and violently breaking up a protest outside their diplomatic residence in Washington.

Attacking the small group of protesters with their fists and feet, men in dark suits and others were recorded repeatedly kicking one woman as she lay curled on a sidewalk.

Another wrenches a woman's neck and throws her to the ground. A man with a bullhorn is repeatedly kicked in the face.

In total eleven people were injured including one Police officer. Get the facts right NZ Herald.

While some footage initially showed the Police trying to quell protestors, many Police then tried to intervene in the vicious assaults by Erdogan's bodyguards. However the Turkish security personnel didn’t pay any attention to American law enforcement and kept on trying to kill the protestors.

Here's a video of the violence:

Clearly there was no need for such a violent attack. The protestors were peaceful and there was no threat to the Turkish President. He was safely inside meeting with Donald Trump when the worst of the violence occurred.

Here's another video showing President Erdogan ordering the attack before walking inside:
Kicking United States citizens in the head while they lie on the ground, threatening to kill while chocking female protestors and continuing the assault when their victims were unconscious are all serious crimes that should be vigorously pursued by US law enforcement.

That's why President Erdogan wins this weeks Asshole award. What a horrible dictator!

Hey Kids: Voting's Fun!

This reporter's unique way of getting "the kids" politically engaged is swearing at them.

The Craig vs. Slater Muppet show

If you've kept track of the Craig vs. Slater defamation case in the Auckland High Court recently you could be excused for thinking the proceedings were some sort of sick joke! You might also have noticed the many contradictions of right wing propagandist Cameron Slater.

Perhaps Slater's delusions are due to the hearing being extended over a number of weeks and he simply cannot remember what was said from one day to the next. Whatever his problem let's have a quick look at the goings on of hearing so far.

On Tuesday, Stuff reported:

Cameron Slater defends Colin Craig blog posts

But giving his brief of evidence on Tuesday, Slater said he was just a journalist chasing a story.

"The difference between my conduct and other journalists is that I never write anything that does not agree with my libertarian and conservative viewpoints."

He said he received payment for individual posts on his blog.

"With regards to payment for posts, this is a standard journalistic endeavour these days. It is commonly called native advertising or sponsored content."

Clearly Slater doesn't understand what native advertising actually means. The tricky thing for his lawyer is that the deluded blogger actually believes his own bullshit. For instance Slater incorrectly thinks he's somehow protected by publishing laws, while at the same time flouting them.

Slater simply cannot claim innocent dissemination or journalistic privilege in any of these proceedings because in most instances the malicious statements originated from his blog. He also did not clearly indicate the posts were opinions and instead wrote rumour and conjecture as fact.

"I am by profession a journalist; I was simply doing my job. I investigated along with all political media a sex scandal and Colin Craig's attempt to cover it up."

Cameron Slater a journalist... LOL!

It could be that Craig’s political opponents paid for the defamatory posts on (what a dumb name) Whale Oil Beef Hooked. It's relevant to the case, so Slater et al better pray to God the Judge doesn't want to find out who the real authors might be.

The right wing clearly recognised the difficulties another centre right political party would cause them at the upcoming election and employed the services of a number of propagandist’s at the time to actively work to try and destroy The Conservative Party.

That puts Slater's muckraking well outside the realms of news-worthy reporting. Unfortunately the truth of the matter hasn't stopped him from claiming to be a champion of the fourth estate over and over again though.

Last Wednesday, Newstalk ZB reported:

Colin Craig and Cameron Slater clash in courtroom

Slater said he was just doing his job as a journalist when he posted the allegations.

Under cross-examination by Mr Craig - who is representing himself - at the High Court at Auckland on Wednesday, Slater said the personal affairs of politicians needed to be exposed if they reflected hypocrisy.

"If you put yourself in public, then yes, you get a free hit. But (journalists) have to stay within bounds of law. You have to tell the truth," he said.

Slater telling the truth? Yeah right!

Consider the fact that the authors might well be other politicians who are secretly posting their political attacks online through Whale Oil Beef Hooked.

It's well known that Slater publishes other people’s work under his own name without proper attribution. Perhaps the Judge might be interesting to know who exactly Whale Oil's political ghostwriters are?

Slater could therefore use the defence that he copy-pasted word for word the defamatory content that was sent to him (along with a cheque), but I doubt such a defence would work.

Slater personally disseminated the malicious content and he would have to be a complete dribbling moron to not understand what he was doing. On second thought the Judge might consider such an argument.

Let's see what else Slater thinks is a legal defence for defamatory blog posts:

"But just because someone doesn't like what's being said about them, doesn't mean it's defamatory."

Plenty of legal cases around the world suggested there was a "free-for-all on politicians", he said.

Not much of an argument really considering such a disaster of a case hasn't been heard under New Zealand law before and it's not just that the post are disliked; they are in fact defamatory.

Despite this, Craig will likely need to prove the attack articles caused damage because he’s probably unable to show that Slater published malicious falsehoods all by himself. There was simply too much information in the public arena already and I doubt the Judge will even bother to wade through it all.

Also on Wednesday, NZCity reported:

Politicians despicable, Slater tells Craig

Under cross-examination by Mr Craig - who is representing himself - at the High Court at Auckland on Wednesday, Slater said people such as Nicky Hager in his book Dirty Politics had regularly attacked him because he was influential.

"That is why I'm targeted and continue to be targeted by people such as yourself," he told Mr Craig.

Mr Craig later asked Slater if his blogs were a political force that influenced votes and altered political outcomes, to which Slater replied "yes".

I wonder if Slater understands the implications to his answer? The deluded blogger effectively just agreed that he caused the Conservative Party harm by publishing malicious posts about Colin Craig. What a jackass!

He said he did not hide his opinion in his posts and on some issues could be considered a political lobbyist.

However, he said he was never paid for blog posts but did receive income as a consultant providing media training or helping clients, such as politicians, prepare for hostile question and answer sessions.

So Slater was never paid for blog posts but received payment for individual posts on his blog. WTF!

It's little wonder the Judge has become tired of the slapstick routine by a couple of clowns.

Yesterday, Stuff reported:

Judge scolds Craig and Slater in the High Court

Colin Craig and Cameron Slater have each been scolded by a judge in the Auckland High Court.

The former Conservative Party leader and the Whaleoil blogger are suing each other for defamation.

Craig, who is representing himself, was cross examining Slater on Thursday, when Justice Kit Toogood took exception to his methods.

The problem for Craig is he’s taken things far too personally. The case isn’t about his feelings, which any competent lawyer should have told him.

It’s about being able to prove Slater acted with malice and/or that the defamatory posts actually caused Craig harm. He can point all day long at his former political parties plummeting support after the scandal broke… But that’s not actually proof of cause and effect from just one blog.

Does the serial litigant have the competency to highlight the difference between Slater’s posts and mainstream media reports? Will he even bring to the judges attention the fact Slater has contradicted himself, effectively committing perjury?

Did Craig even bother to reply to or request the malicious content on the festering boil of a blog be removed? Is his pamphlet defensible because he was simply trying to make some sort of vain attempt at a public response to the allegations? I guess we’ll have to wait for the Judges ruling on these matters.

18 May 2017

Julie Anne Genter interviews medical cannabis expert Dr. Bearman

An extended version of Julie Anne Genter's interview with medical cannabis expert Dr. Bearman where they talk about public perception, side affects and benefits of using medicinal cannabis.

The Green Party has put forward a medical cannabis Member’s Bill - read about it here.

You can find the Green Party's drug reform policy here.

Donald Trump's Treason

With the current President of the United States openly admitting that he provided sensitive information to Russian officials, you’ve got to wonder what all those flag waiving patriotic voters are thinking.

They will be highly disappointed because there’s no question that by providing Russia with information of the highest classification, Donald Trump has betrayed the United States and its allies.

On Monday, the Washington Post reported:

Trump revealed highly classified information to Russian foreign minister and ambassador

The information the president relayed had been provided by a U.S. partner through an intelligence-sharing arrangement considered so sensitive that details have been withheld from allies and tightly restricted even within the U.S. government, officials said.

The partner had not given the United States permission to share the material with Russia, and officials said Trump’s decision to do so endangers cooperation from an ally that has access to the inner workings of the Islamic State. After Trump’s meeting, senior White House officials took steps to contain the damage, placing calls to the CIA and the National Security Agency.

Clearly blathering classified information to the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Russian Ambassador to the US as well as a Russian news agency makes Trump entirely unfit for office.

“This is code-word information,” said a U.S. official familiar with the matter, using terminology that refers to one of the highest classification levels used by American spy agencies. Trump “revealed more information to the Russian ambassador than we have shared with our own allies.”

Such a betrayal of the United States' intelligence sources by somebody controlling the world’s fate should be raising concerns with their five eyes partners. They should be questioning the legitimacy of the rogue administration and halting all sensitive communications with them.

But if that treasonous act wasn’t bad enough, yesterday Reuters reported:

Trump asked Comey to end investigation of Michael Flynn: source

U.S. President Donald Trump asked then-FBI Director James Comey to end the agency's investigation into ties between former White House national security adviser Michael Flynn and Russia, according to a source who has seen a memo written by Comey.

The explosive new development on Tuesday followed a week of tumult at the White House after Trump fired Comey and then discussed sensitive national security information about Islamic State with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

It seems inevitably that Trump will be impeached for interfering in an FBI investigation. Even a majority of Americans think he should be. After all the evidence is undeniable that he’s obstructed justice and there are simply too many questions now being asked for him to conceivably avoid a hearing.

Of course Trump could decide to go through the process of denying the allegations while firing any officials who ask too many difficult questions. But such a decision would inevitably cause more instability for the US and their allies. This would undoubtedly increase friction at the highest levels of international relations.

It’s likely therefore that a large amount of White House insiders and government official's will be looking for a more scripted way for Trump to exit the Presidency. Despite his renowned arrogance, the Donald will probably just throw in the towel and retire.

On Tuesday, The Washington Times also reported:

Trump didn’t know source of classified info, says Security Adviser McMaster

White House National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster reiterated Tuesday that President Trump didn’t put national security at risk in a discussion with Russian diplomats last week about new threats posed by the Islamic State.

“The president in no way compromised sources or methods,” Mr. McMaster told reporters. “What the president shared was wholly appropriate.”

He said Mr. Trump didn’t even know where the information in question came from.

Apparently we're just meant to believe what McMaster says despite evidence to the contrary.

It’s simply implausible that Trump wasn’t aware of the source and secrecy of the information he decided to present to the Russians. Prior to the meeting where he learnt of the highly classified information Trump would have been briefed about its secrecy. Officials would have been at pains to make Trump pay attention to the 'CONFIDENTIAL' stamped all over the documents.

The President of the United States has been running a country of approximately 324 million people like a two-bit reality show. He's proven himself time and time again completely unfit to be the President of the United States. Trump should therefore do the world a favour and resign.

17 May 2017

Twitter reacts to National's housing policy

National's housing crisis

We should all know that National’s recent announcement to apparently build around 34,000 new houses in Auckland over the next decade is a big fucking joke!

National has once again tried to put a sticking plaster on the gaping wound that is the New Zealand housing crisis. Without some emergency triage, thanks to the government’s inaction, the New Zealand housing market is likely to fall off a cliff.

Yesterday, Radio New Zealand reported:

NZ at 40% risk of housing bust - Goldman Sachs

New Zealand's housing market has a 40 percent chance of going bust in the next two years, according to investment bank Goldman Sachs.

The bank has said this country's housing market is the most over-valued and most vulnerable of a group of 10 developed economies, in a report obtained by the Bloomberg news agency.

A housing "bust" is defined as house prices falling 5 percent or more and is based on the ratio of house prices to rents, household incomes, and house prices adjusted for inflation.

Wow! New Zealand worst in the world again. Well-done National. You would expect that with such predictions by Goldman Sachs the government might be taking the housing crisis seriously. Unfortunately not!

Not only has the Social Housing Minister Amy Adams included the government's current building figures in her calculations, effectively announcing National’s lame duck of a policy twice, they’re also planning to demolish thousands of state houses to free up some land.

Today, reported:

The figures:

Adams on Tuesday announced a headline 34,000 new homes would be built on Crown land in Auckland over the next ten years.

The net increase in housing on Crown land will be slightly below 27,000, as 8,300 state houses will first be demolished to make way for the new builds.

To cover those demolished state homes, the plan will see 13,500 social housing units built. That leaves 20,600 other units to be sold after being built. Some will be in the ‘affordable’ category priced below $650,000 with covenants on who can buy them and how they might be on-sold, and others at ‘market price’ with fewer restrictions.

But even a number of those houses are already in the pipeline through social housing plans and the Tamaki and Hobsonville developments. The bulk of “new places” will be 11,500 social houses and 12,800 ‘affordable’ and ‘market’ houses.

So the net result to National’s latest announcement is approximately 5,000 state houses over the next ten years, which is well short of the approximately 40,000 affordable houses required in Auckland right now.

Also consider the fact that we have migration into New Zealand of around 70,000 each year, which is putting extraordinary pressure on our infrastructure.

I guess the government doesn’t give two shits about overcrowding, house price inflation, decreasing homeownership levels and the increasing numbers of homeless Kiwi's wandering the streets, which are just some of the negative consequences to New Zealand’s housing crisis.

16 May 2017

Bill English gets owned

From HBO's Last Week Tonight with John Oliver:

Alfred Ngaro is a thug

At first glance, Alfred Ngaro’s threats to defund people who speak out against the government might seem a bit random. After all he was preaching to the initiated at a National Party convention last weekend and probably wasn't expecting much attention.

It’s therefore conceivable the Associate Minister for Social Housing is just some sort of naïve lone wolf blindly wandering around in the political wilderness… Isn’t it?

On Saturday, the Newsroom reported:

People in glass houses shouldn’t speak out of turn

The associate housing minister Alfred Ngaro led the charge in a presentation laced with political menace against those who question National's performance on housing.

He even suggested Labour list candidate Willie Jackson could expect to lose Government support for his Manukau Urban Māori Authority interest in a second charter school, and its Whānau Ora contract should he "bag us" on the campaign trail.

"We are not happy about people taking with one hand and throwing with the other," Ngaro said.

"Do not play politics with us. If you get up on the campaign trail and start bagging us, then all the things you are doing are off the table. They will not happen."

Alfred Ngaro’s menace towards National’s opponents caused a rather large backlash and the government has had to go into a bit of damage control. Some apologies were made and assurances given by a Prime Minister hungry for attention.

An investigation into Ngaro's funding decisions was cynically launched and lasted all of a day before providing the inevitable foregone conclusion we've come to expect from National's self-regulation.

However you’ve got to wonder if the speech was simply indicative of the right wings belief system. After all, this isn’t the first time National has made such threats in public to try and silence critics or further their political agenda.

In July 2013, the NZ Herald reported:

Human Rights Commission: GCSB bill 'inadequate'

The Government's controversial legislation extending the GCSB's powers to spy on New Zealanders lacks sufficient checks against abuse of power or adequate transparency and accountability, the Human Rights Commission says. 
But Prime Minister John Key has hit back, saying the commission's report is a poor piece of work that was submitted late, and it needed to do better if it was to continue to receive taxpayer funding.

In March 2014, Radio New Zealand reported:

'Threats' to former anti-gambling chair

A former chair of the Problem Gambling Foundation says he was regularly threatened by government officials during his time there.

Earlier this month the Ministry of Health told the country's largest problem gambling service the contract for three-quarters of its services would end mid-year. The Salvation Army is the proposed new provider.

The foundation has said it fears the cut to its funding will end its work on preventing problem gambling.

Unfortunately these are but two of the many examples that show the National party acting on its threats. The right wing often use financial means, despite it usually being taxpayers money they’re spending, to further their ideological beliefs and hinder political opponents.

Unfortunately such a dictatorial and illegal method of silencing critics has a chilling effect on our so-called democracy whereby serious issues are left to fester instead of being brought quickly to the publics attention.

Also consider the fact that what Ngaro said was written down, a hardcopy likely scrutinised by National party minders if not fellow MP's before being given the OK.

Tim Murphy from the Newsroom continues:

He also attempted to paint the Salvation Army as divided over its criticisms of government housing policy.

He had been told by the Prime Minister Bill English "at a priority session" that English had met the Army's policy leader Alan Johnson at an airport. Johnson had reportedly told the PM he was part of a media campaign against the government's homelessness measures.

Ngaro said: "The Prime Minister said 'I need you to get close to him. I need you to love him'." The associate minister had joked back: 'I think that's a bridge too far.'

But Ngaro met Johnson ("not alone") on Friday.

He told the conference there were issues within the Salvation Army. "With the Sallies, you have the Church, the social programmes and the policy part. The policy part is running riot and sayings all sorts of things and there's some tension in the Church because they are not sure about that."

A pretty crappy speech all round really!

It’s important to understand the effect such mafia tactics have on various organisations, both NGOs and government controlled. Manipulating funding to punish or reward based on what is said publicly instead of budgeting based on performance criteria is a fundamentally flawed dynamic that has far reaching negative consequences for our entire society.

Alfred Ngaro’s public extortions should be ringing political alarm bells all over the country. Instead, much of the mainstream media is happy to allow the National party airtime to provide scripted excuses and promote their underhanded political agenda.

Although the Prime Minister has denied there’s any truth to Ngaro’s threats and assured government-funded institutions they have the right to speak out, the threat remains and will likely limit potential whistle blowers freedom of speech.

It appears National’s threat was a well-orchestrated warning that funding comes with certain conditions attached. One of those conditions is to not speak out against the National party especially in election year, no matter how egregious or numerous their failings... Well fuck that.

15 May 2017

National should take suicide prevention seriously

The stats don’t lie. More young people are taking their own lives in New Zealand than ever before. This is a clear indication that the system is failing our most vulnerable…a failure that is counted in many lives unnecessarily lost.

Unfortunately the National led government doesn’t appear to give a damn. People who commit suicide are just another number to them and a political chess piece for the government to try and avoid.

That’s the inference given by this article concerning campaigner Mike King’s experience with working alongside the government. He recently had to quit the New Zealand Suicide Prevention External Advisory Panel, citing numerous problems with National’s self-serving approach.

Today, The NZ Herald reported:

Comedian Mike King quits: Govt's suicide plan 'deeply flawed' 
In a letter to Health Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman, King resigned from the panel saying he is growing "increasingly concerned" about the Draft Suicide Prevention Plan which was released to the public last month.

"The plan has buried all new ideas in such impenetrable language they are beyond recognition and unlikely to ever see the light of day. It is a strategy that is so broad in its effort to please everyone it will eventually collapse under the weight of public expectation. This will please no one except you and the politicians you serve," King wrote.

"It would be funny if people weren't dying," he added.

Pretty scathing! Here’s a copy of the Draft Suicide Prevention Plan (PDF).

King says the draft plan ignores recommendations from the panel, continues to fund "failed experiments", is an almost word for word repeat of the last strategy and will further isolate vulnerable Kiwis.

He went on to say statements made in the draft plan read like a political broadcast and were "so broad and vanilla they can mean everything and nothing at exactly the same time."

The panel had agreed there was a need for the government to set an actual percentage target to try and reduce suicide by 20 per cent over 10 years, but this target was ignored by officials and removed from the final draft plan.

You can see why National took the target out. They clearly don’t have any intention of implementing policy that might reduce suicide rates and having a firm target would allow a more concise assessment of their failure.

"What happened to that [target]?" King asked. "Have we returned to the defeatist attitude that some degree of suicide is acceptable, inevitable or both?"

Every year around 540 people die by suicide in New Zealand.

You would expect that the government would care about such a worsening statistic. After all each life lost to suicide has a substantial financial cost attached to it…not to mention the cost to families, many of whom never recover from a family member committing suicide.

King's resignation comes amid growing calls for an independent inquiry into the state of New Zealand's mental health sector.

The Herald has sought comment from Jonathan Coleman and the Ministry of Health.

Unfortunately National is ideologically blinded by personal responsibility rhetoric. They’re insulated away from the realities of life in New Zealand and appear to not care because in general it’s not their kids who’re committing suicide.

Clearly the National party is more concerned with avoiding bad publicity than actually doing anything substantial about the high levels of suicide in New Zealand.

Bill English the bean counter obviously doesn’t count the cost of lives lost in his budgeting and it won’t be until the government stops avoiding the issue because it’s too political and actually comprehends the cause and effect of their policies that anything will improve.

Clean water is a simple issue

Yesterday, Stuff reported:
People need to understand that clean water is a complex issue, says Bill English

The prime minister says people have "high expectations" for clean waterways, but need to understand the complexity of the problem.

Bill English made the comments during a visit to meet constituents in Manawatu.

English said there was "quite high community expectations" for standards of waterways, but there were difficult long-term issues to be dealt with.

I really don’t accept Bill English's excuses. The issue of polluted waterways isn’t really that complex at all. If you pollute waterways they will be polluted. Simple!

The problems arise because there are so many polluters making vast amounts of money from environmental degradation and no real foresight or proper financial investment by the government. Certainly not enough to undo any of the damage the many decades of polluting our waterways has caused.

English said people also needed to be aware of the "size and complexity" of the task.

It’s about as complex as having less cows shitting in the water. Of course initiatives like proper fencing away from waterways can actually save farmers some cash. The loss of a cow worth $1500 in a waterway is equivalent to the cost of fencing approximately 650 metres of stream for instance.

However apart from a bit of farmer’s initiative and a small amount of token government and council funding, riparian planting isn’t anywhere near what it needs to be. So how complex exactly is planting some trees Bill English?

It is a topical issue for Manawatu, with Horizons Regional Council recently found to not be enforcing water quality regulations properly.

But English played down the recent Environment Court case. "I'm not surprised that regional councils run into some roadblocks. There are others round the country and most of them have found this pretty challenging."

English said he still had faith in councils to do their jobs. "It is important [regional councils] get the support."

The government throwing their hands up in the air and going "the issue is too complex" is just a cop-out. National passing the financial buck onto council's simply isn't going to work.

Unfortunately National has no intention of properly funding councils so they're able to address our polluted waterways. Likewise, councils have little interest in protecting the environment or enforcing the law because most councillors have vested interests in farming.

The sad truth of the matter is that while National is in power we will see little if any real change in terms of our polluted waterways. That’s because they’re the farmer’s party and won’t do anything to upset their core constituency.

So it’s not really a complex issue at all. If you want cleaner waterways that you can swim in without fear of getting sick, that you can go fishing in and actually catch some fish and that doesn’t scare our tourists away with green sludge and bad smells…don’t vote for National. It’s as simple as that.

13 May 2017

4 degrees - Santos Frack Off!

Santos have announced they want 4 degrees of global warming!! That's the Mad Max scenario. In this video I take a look what 4 degrees would mean for Australia and our planet. SHARE and Like this video to tell Santos to FRACK OFF!

350 Aotearoa - Hero of the Week

We should all know by now that climate change is the most pressing issue the world is facing. Not only is increased severe weather patterns causing unprecedented flooding and droughts around the globe mean substantial disruptions to our way of life, the cost to our ecosystem and economy is also extensive and can no longer be ignored.

That’s why it’s so good to see grassroots activism confronting businesses that are still supporting the fossil fuel industry.

Yesterday, Stuff reported:

Protesters storm Dunedin bank and sing Rick Astley's Never Gonna Give You Up

Dozens of climate change protesters stormed into a Dunedin bank and sung the Rick Astley classic Never Gonna Give You Up.

Friday's light hearted protest by 350 Aotearoa was in stark contrast to a similar protest a year ago, where people, including the elderly, were stopped from entering the George St ANZ branch.

This time about 30 protesters went into the branch and began singing the 80s song, in a move known as 'Rick-rolling'.

Peaceful protest is the way to go people. Therefore 350 Aotearoa has won this weeks Hero Award. Keep up the good work.