Friday, April 27, 2012

The Friday Forum - 27 April 2012

It's Friday again, and it may well be the end of the golden weather. We've had an amazing autumn; since the storm at the beginning of March, the weather has been beautifully settled. March rainfall was about a third of average, and April hasn't been much better, so a drop or tow today will do wonders for our tank and our gardens; everything's just a little dry at the moment.

It's been an odd week, with Anzac Day falling right in the middle. Yesterday felt quite odd; rather like a Monday, except it wasn't! But the weekend is within touching distance now, and normal business will resume next week.

So what's on your mind today? The Friday Forum is your place to have your say, rant, rave, vent your spleen, and generally get things off your chest before the weekend. There are no rules, and you choose the agenda. All we ask is that you show a modicum of respect for the views of others, even if you disagree with them.

Right; that's enough from us. The floor is, as always, yours...


Anonymous said...

Some rain in the Manawatu would be good too.
The Labour leadership theories are a bit silly really as at present the party seems pointless and directionless so "Who cares?" Rather than knife Shearer the party would be better employed cleaning out its old parliamentary members.


Anonymous said...

So, it looks like the government will no longer meet its arbitrary target of surplus by 2014/15. Their answer? More cuts! So not only are we looking at a zero-budget this year, but next year as well.

The UK has followed similar austerity policies, and the effects of this madness can clearly be seen there: a double-dip recession, which looks worse than the early stages of the Great Depression. Why? Because cuts to government spending suck demand out of the economy; no-one has any money to spend, so no-one can buy anything, so businesses go under... its a death spiral. And National is marching us right down it, in pursuit of a completely arbitrary target which has been set solely so they can announce success in election year. But the way they're headed, the cost of that "success" will be even more economic pain and suffering for the rest of us, with a side-order of crippled government services to boot.

Anonymous said...

John Banks is in trouble and so is the Key Party. Banks has had a miraculous change of heart on pokies. He used to say gambling bosses were “wide boys” who “sucked” the people of this country dry. Now, he’s rubbed up against John Key and become ‘relaxed’ about more pokies. Maybe the $15,000 undeclared donation from SkyCity helped. A donor Banks was legally required to disclose but didn’t. Labour’s laid a complaint.

Apparently, the way it works with local elections is the complaint goes to the Council electoral officer, who gives it to the Police if they think it’s warranted. In this case, it certainly seems so. Banks claims he didn’t know that the donation was from SkyCity. Which is pretty hard to believe. It was the same amount Len Brown got and he knew who it had come from and declared it. $15,000 doesn’t just drop into your account in a local body campaign.

If Banks were to be convicted (the offence carries a term of up to 2 years) he would be forced to vacate his seat in Parliament.

In the meantime, while there’s an investigation going on, there’s no way that Banks should be voting on any SkyCity legislation.

With the Auditor-General also being asked to look into the tendering process for the white elephant convention centre, there’s going to be nearly as many investigations going on into National’s dirty deal with SkyCity as there are going on over Collins’ ACC scandal.

Anonymous said...

People are wondering why National can't find the $150 million needed to extend the Parental Leave provisions, when they so effortlessly 'find' it for the things that suit them:

"$100 million for the investment bankers but not $150 million for the babies and mothers.

$400 million for the dairy farmers irrigation but not $150 million for the babies and mothers.

$1,700 million for the finance company investors but not $150 million for the babies and mothers.

$1,000 million every year for the upper income tax cuts but not $150 million for the babies and mothers.

$15,000 for John Banks to vote for Sky City but nothing for the babies and mothers.

$35 million loan for Minister Joyce’s previous business MediaWorks but nothing for the babies and mothers."
It does beg the question, Keeping Stock, doesn't it? Where do National find the money for their favourite things?

Keeping Stock said...

@ Anon (10.21am) - you seem to be ignoring the fact the the government is ALREADY supporting "the babies and mothers" to the tune of more than $150m per annum with the existing Paid Parental Leave scheme. A little bit of honesty goes a long way...

Anonymous said...

The United Kingdom is in recession again.

This was entirely predictable. The right convinced themselves that severe austerity measures would somehow magic up growth. It didn't work. Any student of history could have told them it wouldn't work.

They wouldn't listen, because their hearts told them that the solution to the nation's woes was to implement savage measures against the have-nots, while protecting the wealth and privilege of those at the top.

Something similar has been happening in New Zealand in recent years. Our austerity measures have been less severe, and the effects less dramatic, but the result has been little or no growth. The British situation is a reminder to us of the folly of slashing government expenditure during a downturn.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Keeping Stock said...

Sorry Anon, but having "a modicum of respect for the views of others, even if you disagree with them" does not extend to Penny Bright's vendetta with John Banks.

James Stephenson said...

"Severe austerity measures"

A reduction in the rate of increase of government spending is not severe austerity.

Anonymous said...

"Sorry Anon, but having "a modicum of respect for the views of others, even if you disagree with them" does not extend to Penny Bright's vendetta with John Banks."
You what?
You'll delete discussion about Banks' fraudulent behaviour, because it comes from a person who also-ran for the Mayoralty?
I don't see how on earth commenting on Penny Bright's laying of charges against Banks equates with not having a modicum of respect for the views of others'. In fact, haven't you gone against your own direction, deleting my views, disrespectfully?

Anonymous said...

James - it is if you are one of those at whom the measures are aimed. The rich need not fear such measures. They are immune, protected by a PM who is one of their own. Deputy PM also, and the caucus gaggle that swagger in their wake.