Comparing Key to Peters in Parliament

Following on from Was Peters unfairly ejected from the Chamber? – does John Key get away with too much in the Chamber? Is his behaviour unbecoming of a Prime Minister?

Duperez commented:

“…cantankerous, disrespectful and disruptive behaviour…” are lovely descriptions and could be particular to Winston Peters in general or specifically the behaviour which saw his latest ousting.

I don’t quite know if that group of decriptors would apply to the consistent behaviour of say, John Key. ” Disrespectful and disruptive”, yes but not cantankerous. To the former two I’d add “smart arse” and “sneering.” Maybe “wily” also because he knows he can get away with whatever he likes and you always play to the ref.

I think this is fair comment. I agree that Key escapes the cantankerous label, but I think ”disrespectful and disruptive” could easily describe how he often acts in Parliament. And “smart arse” and “sneering” also seems appropriate descriptors.

I’ve said before and I’ll say again that I think Key’s behaviour often goes too far and can be a piss poor look at times.

But he’s also wily and knows what he can usually get away with.

Peters has been around long enough to also know how to be wily, but there’s a significant difference with what he does.

Key always directs his barbs and excesses at opposition MPs. While sometimes excessive it is seen as part of the cut and thrust of Parliamentary debate. He doesn’t argue with the Speaker, as Duperez says, he plays to the ref but he doesn’t play the ref.

In contrast Peters seems more intent on needling and questioning and defying and antagonising the Speaker. Tuesday’s clash on it’s own may not have seemed particularly bad but in the context of a long running battle with Carter then I don’t think the Speaker’s reaction was over the top.

Peters is one of the most experienced combatants in the Chamber. He should know how to play to the ref. He seems to frequently choose to fight with the ref. His questions often seem to begin targeting Government MPs or the PM but divert into spats with the Speaker.

Both Key and Peters display behaviour unbecoming of senior representatives of the people. They set a poor example and lower the tone of Parliamentary debate.

The difference is that Key fights his opposition while Peters seems obsessed with fighting the Speaker and the System. It’s hard to see how he can every win those battles, and his war his futile.

I don’t think either Key or Peters behave appropriately in Parliament, I don’t like the excesses of either. But Key keeps winning while Peters seems determined to continue battles he will mostly lose.

A strange ACT

Yesterday an ACT newsletter made a strange implication about Maurice Williamson apparently wanting to jump waka, from National to ACT – Free Press 25/05/2015 ACT PARTY / NEWSLETTER

Where’s Maurice Williamson Going?
Betting site iPredict has opened up stocks for a by-election in Pakuranga, and for incumbent Williamson to be the candidate by 2017.  The interesting thing is the opening odds, respectively 30 and 25 percent likely.  iPredict’s operators, who have deep political connections, set these odds.  Something’s up.

Seriously!?
ACT’s Board has unanimously rejected an approach by the hapless Don Brash (no joking, this is too good for us to have made up) for Williamson to join ACT’s caucus.  “My own party don’t want me no more” is not an attractive pitch. For similar reasons, what poor country would accept him as ambassador?

This is a bit vague, talking about “an approach by the hapless Don Brash for Williamson to join ACT’s caucus”.

It implies via an apparent quote from Williamson “My own party don’t want me no more” but that could be just an ACT quip.

NZ Herald reports Act Party rejects Maurice Williamson.

Act President John Thompson says he was left with the clear impression by former Act leader Don Brash that an approach by him about National MP Maurice Williamson joining Act had been made on behalf of Mr Williamson.

Act has rebuffed the bid and Mr Williamson is refusing to talk about it.

But…

Prime Minister John Key said today Mr Williamson assured him through a text exchange that he did not ask anyone to make an approach on his behalf.

“He made it really, really clear that he hasn’t asked anybody – he hasn’t made any approach and he hasn’t asked anyone to advocate for him.”

But…

…Mr Thompson told the Herald that when he met Dr Brash in an Auckland central café the week before last, Dr Brash said something like:

“Maurice has indicated he would like someone to approach the Act Party on his behalf.”

He was also left with the clear impression that the bid to join Act was a plan to “party-hop” now.

“No by-election was discussed,” Mr Thompson said.

The difference in stories is strange, with both Thompson and Key sounding adamant they have it right..

That ACT would put this story out in a party newsletter is very strange.

There’s no reason why commerce and compassion can’t co-exist

It’s common to see carping about how compassionless the Government and John key and National MPs are. How they purportedly don’t care about poor people – some go as far as accusing ‘right wing’ politicians and rich people of deliberately keeping the masses poor so they can accumulate wealth.

Which is absurd, as anyone who knows how commerce works knows that the more affluent people are the more prosperous business can be. You can’t make much money out of destitution.

Thursday’s budget has created confusion and consternation on the left. How could an allegedly hard right government be the first to raise core benefit levels for 44 years? Something three eras of Labour led government had failed to do.

Amongst the confusion absurd claims have been made. In Thoughts on budget 2015 Danyl at Dim-Post:

National believes in massive intervention in the economy, mostly in favor of their political donors but also in response to signals from their polling and market research…

rickrowling asked “What are the examples of this?” None have yet been given. This statement is typical from the left of National do anything hinting at compassion – there must be an ulterior motive driven by the greed of the 1%.

One way of trying to explain is by claiming that National’s efforts are weak and the left would have done it better. Like ‘truthseekernz':

The response from virtually all opponents was lamentable. I would have preferred something like:

“It’s great to see this government adopt a weak tea, might-work-a-little version of the policies we’ve been promoting for years. So we’ve won the policy argument. National has done it because that had to, not because they wanted to. If voters want the real thing, they should be sure to vote for us (whoever ‘we ‘ are – Labour or Greens) next election.”

National can’t have done it because they wanted to what they thought was a good thing to do, they ‘had to do it’. That’s crap of confusion.

wjohnallen:

John Key’s hallmark of power is pragmatism and if that means that he has to give a little to the masses, he will, and did. But that does not change his wider agenda that has all the markings of seeking neoliberal outcomes.

Again Key “has to give a little to the masses” but has a “wider agenda”. That’s ideological crap.

Neilm has a different take on it:

And Key’s opponents have developed a rather insular, self-reinforcing narrative about how Key hates the children etc which isn’t quite what National is. I’m not suggesting that National is the perfect social justice party but constantly making strategy on the basis that they’re corrupt liars out to destroy democrat and the planet has distracted from forming a strategy that deals with reality.

Tinakori also challenges the left leaning laments.

Wow, Danyl, there are so many straw men in that post. The major two are the propositions that this government was a group of hairy chested economic fundamentalists and that effective social policy is entirely the preserve of the left.

The first was flawed from the very beginning and was probably prompted by the bizarre and false idea that they had embraced austerity as a fiscal policy when their approach was classic Keynesian. This is just another case of the left and the commentariat looking to overseas political slogans for guidance rather than looking at what a government actually does.

As for the big things – fiscal, monetary and general regulatory policy – there is no major change that I can see and the spending changes are pretty small in the context of both government spending and the economy.

richdrich swings the other way:

The “middle class welfare” concept is an artefact of neo-liberalism.

It divides society into “hard working keewees” and “beneficiary scum” (Labour and National both love the former term, but Labour might be a bit softer on the latter. “Communities with needs”, maybe?)

Benefits (apart from disguised ones like tax free capital gains) are denied the former and grudgingly meted out to the latter, accompanied by an appropriate degree of paternalism, like making them spend all day in a Winz office with no toilet – at least they can’t take drugs while they’re in there.

I haven’t seen any sign that National (and ACT and the Maori Party and Peter Dunne) have “grudgingly meted out” the benefit increases. Confused leftists like richdrich can’t bring themselves to even grudgingly meting out praise when it’s due.

How could this tory scum out left the left on social policy? Tinokori suggests:

On social policy you underestimate the personal impact on government policy of growing up in a state house (Key) and the Catholic social conscience (English).

There may be something in that, but there’s far more to it. I’m not Catholic and didn’t grow up in a state house. I did grow up in a very poor household – where I learnt the value of hard work and self responsibility.

Many people in New Zealand who have built their own businesses and careers and wealth have seen and experienced hardship somewhere along the way.

We now seem to have a left who can’t see past their arrogance.

I see more compassion in Key and English and many in business and on the centre right than amongst the carping on the impotent left.

This budget appears to have turned politics upside down in New Zealand. I don’t think it has. It just demonstrates what has been evident for a long time, that the left/right divide was long ago bridged. It doesn’t exist in New Zealand how it once did.

Key and his National government get it. They got it a long time ago, that’s why they are still in government.

There’s no reason why commerce and compassion can’t co-exist. Except in the closed carping minds of the old left. They are left crapping in their own nest.

Budget headlines

I’ve only seen headlines and summaries on the budget. Two stand out to me from those that the Herald has highlighted in Budget 2015: 10 things you need to know.

  • Budget deficit of $684 million this financial year.

That was signalled so is no surprise, and was expected to be a major criticism of Bill English, John Key and National,

  • A $790 million child hardship package, includes an increase in $25 of core benefit for beneficiaries with children.

In contrast that’s a major surprise.

And it isn’t hard to see that if the increase in benefits wasn’t included the deficit could have been avoided.

This is a very significant choice and signal from National, putting welfare of some of the poorest ahead of a long standing target.

Winston Peters’ honour “is beyond question”

Winston Peters claimed during Question Time in Parliament yesterday in an odd exchange with John Key that “he is doubting my honour, and that is the real issue here, because, as you know, it is beyond question”.

What was beyond question was that Peters lost track of what his original line of questioning was about.

Draft transcript:

11. Rt Hon WINSTON PETERS (Leader—NZ First) to the Prime Minister : Does he stand by all his statements?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): Yes.

Rt Hon Winston Peters : Does he stand by his statement on 14 October 2013 when he said in regards to this country’s veterans: “our Government has been firmly guided by a keen sense of fairness, and a sense of the need to honour our current and future veterans in a dignified way.”

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : Yes.

Rt Hon Winston Peters : If that is the case, is it true that while he was at Gallipoli, and New Zealand was remembering 100 years of Anzac sacrifices, behind the scenes cynical moves were under way to treat veterans as a burden on the State?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : I have not got a clue what the member is talking about.

Rt Hon Winston Peters : Well, half of that is correct—he has not got a clue. How can he stand by that statement when his Government sent out this letter to veterans on 30 April, 5 days after Anzac Day, signalling cuts to the services that they receive—this letter?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : I do not know what letter the member is talking about.

Rt Hon Winston Peters : I seek leave to table a letter from Veterans Affairs New Zealand, dated 30 April 2015, written to veterans 5 days after Anzac Day.

Mr SPEAKER : Leave is sought to table that particular letter. Is there any objection? There is none. It can be tabled.

  • Document, by leave, laid on the Table of the House.

Mr SPEAKER : Supplementary question—[Interruption] Order! It has been tabled—[Interruption] Order! [Interruption] Order! The member will resume his seat. Leave has been put, leave was granted, and the document will be tabled, but that does not stop the member now from proceeding with his supplementary questions.

Rt Hon Winston Peters : Given that what is proposed is a serious cut and privatisation of the services to veterans, does he not think that a better use of public money would be to use the $25 million that he is spending on a referendum to change the flag to support those who have fought and died for the flag?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : I think the member is making it up.

Rt Hon Winston Peters : I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. With the greatest respect, that is the second time. The first answer was that he said he did not have a clue—well, I did not disagree with that.

Mr SPEAKER : But he is allowed to say that, if that is the answer he has got. The second point?

Rt Hon Winston Peters : Well, OK. The second one is that now he is doubting my honour, and that is the real issue here, because, as you know, it is beyond question. [Interruption]

Mr SPEAKER : Order! The member will resume his seat. That is not a valid point of order.

How many children ‘in poverty’?

John Key says that the Government will particularly target the 60,000-100,000 children living in most deprivation. Green co-leader Metiria Turei questioned Key in Parliament yesterday about the numbers, but came up with a few numbers of her own. Greens are campaigning to ‘end child poverty’.

End child poverty: Take the Step New Zealand should be the best place in the world to grow up. But for 285,000 Kiwi children currently in poverty, that’s just not the case. Persistent poverty damages a child for the rest of their life. And it damages our country. We’re spending over $6 billion a year on preventable crime, illness and lost educational opportunities – the direct cost of keeping kids in poverty. Many of our poorest children are excluded from getting the same support the state gives other kids who need it, because their parents don’t work enough. These kids need champions to make sure Parliament understands that ordinary New Zealanders want the best for all our kids, regardless of who their parents are

That’s “285,000 Kiwi children currently in poverty”. In Parliament yesterday Turei asked:

Is the Children’s Commissioner wrong, and are his experts who worked on the solutions to child poverty wrong, when they state that there are between 180,000 and 200,000 children who are materially deprived

But she also asked:

Did the Ministry of Social Development fail to give him the 2014 Bryan Perry report that showed that there are 260,000 children in poverty and that 205,000 of them are living in severe poverty, where their parents earn less than half the median income?

And:

Will the Prime Minister just admit that he has made up an Oliver Twist definition of poverty so that he can ignore some 200,000 New Zealand children who suffer from poverty every day?

So Turei and the Greens are quoting a number of numbers:

  • 285,000
  • between 180,000 and 200,000
  • 260,000
  • 205,000
  • 200,000

Greens seem to want to increase benefits to increase ‘incomes’, whether the parents are in work or not, and no matter what the deprivation. So what does Key base his number on?

It seems to me that the member picks and chooses her index depending on what suits her argument, but all I can tell the member is that if one looks at the number of children who are deemed to be at the most significant level of deprivation in New Zealand based on the Ministry of Social Development index, it is 60,000 to 100,000. But what I can say is that Bryan Perry’s new annual report—and the new edition will be out very soon—will make it quite clear that in terms of what they define as severe material hardship, there are between 60,000 and 100,000 children, and they have between nine and 11 conditions on the deprivation index.

Using actual measures of deprivation (or poverty) to target the worst problems won’t stop the Greens and others from accusing Key and the Government of not caring about kids and of deliberately keeping kids in poverty. —

Full draft transcript of questions and answers yesterday in Parliament.

Prime Minister—Statements 6. METIRIA TUREI (Co-Leader—Green) to the Prime Minister: Does he stand by all his statements?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): Yes.

Metiria Turei : How poor does a child need to be under his “definitional difference”, which he told Paul Henry about yesterday, when he claimed that there were only 60,000 to 100,000 children living in poverty?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : The advice I have from the Ministry of Social Development material deprivation index is that there are indeed between 60,000 and 100,000 children who are living in more severe material hardship. They are children who, based on that index, lack nine to 11 items from that deprivation index.

Metiria Turei : Under his “definitional difference”, is a child living in poverty if their parents cannot afford to buy them fresh food, if they do not have two pairs of shoes, if they cannot afford a school uniform, and if they do not have their own bed? Rt Hon

JOHN KEY : I refer the member to the Ministry of Social Development’s material deprivation index.

Metiria Turei : Is the Children’s Commissioner wrong, and are his experts who worked on the solutions to child poverty wrong, when they state that there are between 180,000 and 200,000 children who are materially deprived—that is, they go without three or more essential items such as fresh food, warm clothes, their own bed, and good shoes?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : It seems to me that the member picks and chooses her index depending on what suits her argument, but all I can tell the member is that if one looks at the number of children who are deemed to be at the most significant level of deprivation in New Zealand based on the Ministry of Social Development index, it is 60,000 to 100,000.

But I would say that this Government is very focused on all children, particularly those who are less well off, and there are degrees of how less well off they are.

That is why the Government introduced free GP visits.

That is why the Government has put more money into providers like KidsCan.

That is why this Government has worked alongside Fonterra and Sanitarium to provide free breakfasts.

That is why the Government has supported having social workers in all low-decile schools.

It is why the Government has introduced children’s teams to work with at-risk children and families.

That is why the Government has insulated every State house, and it is why the Government has worked to insulate 240,000 other homes and has given them clean heating.

This is a Government that, in the very worst of times in New Zealand, has maintained benefits and entitlements that provide support for the very children whom that member is talking about.

Metiria Turei : Did the Ministry of Social Development fail to give him the 2014 Bryan Perry report that showed that there are 260,000 children in poverty and that 205,000 of them are living in severe poverty, where their parents earn less than half the median income?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : The member will note—if she wants to refer to that particular report that she is talking about—how consistently the numbers that she is talking about have been at that level of deprivation. In fact, there were about 240,000 to 260,000 children living in poverty under Labour, at the height of what was theoretically an economic boom.

But what I can say is that Bryan Perry’s new annual report—and the new edition will be out very soon—will make it quite clear that in terms of what they define as severe material hardship, there are between 60,000 and 100,000 children, and they have between nine and 11 conditions on the deprivation index.

Metiria Turei : Would the Prime Minister agree that by promising to tackle child poverty and then changing the definition of poverty to exclude most of the children who are actually poor, he is breaking yet another Budget promise?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : I think the member is being extremely selective with the comments I have made. If she actually goes back and looks at the interviews that I have done on this topic ever since the last election, she will see that I have consistently said that there is a disagreement between ourselves and those who claim that there are 260,000 children in that category.

We have made it quite clear that we see a group of 60,000 to 100,000 as our priority. It does not mean that we do not provide either services or support for the wider group; we actually do. I listed a great many, and I will not repeat them now. But our primary area of focus and attention is on those who are most in need.

I think most New Zealanders, actually, would say that the Government having a focus on those who are in the worst of conditions is putting our resources in the right place.

Jacinda Ardern : Does he stand by his previous statements in this House that there are many measures of child poverty, in light of his position now that there is just one, material deprivation, which just so happens to be the smallest of all the measures that are used by the Children’s Commissioner?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : I stand by the view that there is no one single measure, but I am simply saying that the material deprivation index, according to the advice that we have had from the Ministry of Social Development, is the best. That is one measure, but there is no one single measure of poverty in New Zealand, and I do not think there should be.

Metiria Turei : Will the Prime Minister just admit that he has made up an Oliver Twist definition of poverty so that he can ignore some 200,000 New Zealand children who suffer from poverty every day?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY : I think the member risks being a little bit silly. I listed a few moments ago a very wide range of support that we provide for all New Zealand children, and in some cases, obviously, the support is much more focused on those who are in need.

I have made it quite clear that I think there is a group who are in worse hardship than others, and that is supported by the material deprivation index, which evolved, actually, from the European equivalent.

It is a very thoughtful process that Bryan Perry goes through, and it looks at very detailed analysis. I am more than happy to have the debate with the New Zealand public, but I think you might find that the New Zealand public supports the view that those who are most in need deserve the most support.

That does not mean that other children do not get support; they actually do. But this Government is very focused on that group, and I think most New Zealanders would say that is the right thing to do. The member shakes her head, but if we followed her economic policies a whole million of New Zealand children would be in hardship because none of their parents would be in work.

McCready loses one case, starts another, promises a third

Graeme McCready’s criminal prosecution against John has been rejected by the District Court. He complained about the bar being set to high but he had no evidence. If the police pressed charges with no evidence it would be absurd, and so is McCready’s action.

The Herald reports:

The case against Mr Key got tossed out after the judge criticised the lack of written statements.

The judge had also rejected an application for an oral evidence order, which Mr McCready could then have used to summons Ms Bailey, Mr Key and any witnesses and compel testimony under oath.

Amanda Bailey has refused to have anything to do with his legal action. AN no other alleged witnesses have helped him either.

But he’s continuing his political crusade.

The Hamilton-based litigant filed a case with the Human Rights Tribunal this afternoon seeking $30,000 punitive damages from the John Key over the infamous ponytail-pulling incidents.

He filed a complaint of sexual harassment against Mr Key just hours after a District Court judge tossed out an attempted criminal prosecution over pulling the hair of Parnell waitress Amanda Bailey.

Instead of pursuing the matter through criminal courts, Mr McCready said he had switched to a civil jurisdiction which would be more straight-froward.

“In the Human Rights Tribunal I can directly summons these people,” he said.

So still no evidence, so he seems to want the Tribunal to effectuate his investigation. Ludicrous.

Mr McCready said he could have pursued the case at the same time as the criminal complaint but did not want it to appear as if he was assaulting the case on all fronts.

“I could have but then I would look like a vexatious masked crusader, which I’m not of course. I would look like a serial litigant. I only do one of these a year.”

But he does appear to be assaulting the case on as many fronts as possible.

He said he also intended complaining again to the Independent Police Conduct Authority about Mr Key’s police bodyguards, to whom Ms Bailey complained about the hair-pulling.

He said the officers should have taken action – and that they would have done were he in the cafe pulling someone’s hair.

And if he fails with these next two actions then what? What a year so he doesn’t look like a serial litigant?

Name calling an immature pall on our politics

A spate of name calling has broken out. Whether it’s ‘Angry Andy’ or any of the many names targeted at John key over the last few years – see the childish Angry Andy, Creepy Key promoted by the person hiding behind the the ‘Natwatch’ pseudonym at The Standard, and the mindless repetition at Whale Oil (sometimes in several posts a day) – it’s unbecoming of what should be a mature democracy.

And there’s childishness from the top.

The Prime Minister has come back with his own description of the Labour leader for saying failing to make a surplus is none of the biggest political deceptions of a lifetime.

“He is turning into Angry Andrew that just wants to turn and start making ridiculous comments.

“I mean, the guy just can’t be taken seriously if he starts making those sorts of comments.”

http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/politics/shots-fired-between-key-and-little/

Petty name calling isn’t a great look either Mr Key.

Andrew Little reacts with more name calling:

Mr Little says he doesn’t see or hear the “angry Andy” moniker “apart from the odd Tory troll on Twitter”.

http://www.3news.co.nz/politics/little-not-angry-about-moniker-2015051311#ixzz3Zzy2xC9v

Mindless abuse and name calling is common in social media – it looks bad enough there, detracting from arguments and credibility. But when the country’s leader and largest opposition party leader resort to stupid slanging matches it casts an immature pall on our politics.

Tiso versus Compton – insidious dirt

A Twitter stoush between John Key’s social media adviser and an online activist does credit to neither.

Stuff reports in John Key’s social media adviser faces Twitter threat claims.

John Key’s social media adviser found himself at the centre of a social media storm amid claims he threatened to reveal the identity behind a Twitter account.

Gwynn Compton has made his Twitter account private and faced a round of online abuse after an exchange with an anti-National Party Twitter account named @johnkeymustgo emerged on Monday.
Following a short exchange about a tweet sent out by the National Party about animal testing, Compton, whose Twitter account does not show he is linked to Key’s office, implied he knew who was behind the @johnkeymustgo account.

“You think you’re so clever. But you’re not that good at hiding your online fingerprints. Have a nice day:)”.

Seems  silly of Compton to get involved in petty squabbles and respond like. Perhaps he needs a social media adviser.

Then Giovanni Tiso (@gtiso) got involved:

Who is this delightful fellow who claims to work for the PM and threatens to track down his critics on Twitter?

That’s an odd response. It was barely a threat, if at all. Compton pointed something out that he had presumably observed. It could just as easily be seen as advice of sorts.

How seriously does Tiso view (alleged) threats to reveal things about people on Twitter?

Not very, going by what he then did.

On Monday morning Tiso, who has written extensively about the Dirty Politics saga, published the exchange, along with Compton’s LinkedIn profile, which says he is a senior adviser in the office of John Key.

“Who is this delightful fellow who claims to work for the PM and threatens to track down his critics on Twitter?”

The post was retweeted more than 60 times with a number of replies, generally accusing Compton – or Tiso – of bullying.

Later the @johnkeymustgo account revealed that Compton was behind the www.changetheflag.nz website. In doing so, some personal details of Compton were also revealed.

So the accuser become the abuser.

Tiso said Compton’s threats were not extreme, and if a regular Twitter user made it, it would not mean anything.

“But if you do it and you’re an advisor to the Prime Minister, I think that’s different because the power imbalance is such.”

So anyone related to the Prime Minister is fair game. And they should be shamed into silence.

Tiso distanced himself from the revelations of personal information about Compton, saying he had only linked two publicly available social media pages and did not support revealing private information.

Compton didn’t reveal anything (as far as I’m aware), public or private. He didn’t threaten to reveal anything publicly.

On Monday morning Tiso, who has written extensively about the Dirty Politics saga, published the exchange, along with Compton’s LinkedIn profile, which says he is a senior adviser in the office of John Key.

In Tiso’s world it’s only other people who are deemed to play dirty (when he accuses them of it) no matter how flimsy the evidence.

Here he has overstated an offence (it could seen as a fabricated offence) and then done pretty much what he had accused someone else of doing.

This looks like another example of insidious dirt – Tiso has often played a part in a social media campaign to shut up anyone he disagrees with or who’s deemed politics he disagrees with.

And it’s not isolated. Also this week Tiso is busy trying to reveal everything he can about a blog that the author has tried to remove from the internet. See The unusual case of the disappearing blog  – where Tiso is more than threatening to reveal something someone doesn’t want to be public, he seems to be doing everything he can to ensure it’s as public as possible.

This is the nature of the left that thinks it deserves to be in power. Who would the hound out and hound under if they got some power?

Changing flags of the Commonwealth

In Lochore: Give flag vote a chance the NZ Herald has an interesting picture of how flags have changed in the British Commonwealth as countries have become more independent.

flagscommonwealth

Only four out of twenty countries have retained their old flags.

New Zealand’s flag change process is getting interest back in the ‘old country’, the BBC report on How should New Zealand choose a new flag?

It’s a vexillologist’s dream. New Zealand has kicked off a public consultation amid a debate on changing its flag. But where should the nation draw its inspiration from?

When it comes to flag changes countries have often turned to symbols from nature and indigenous heritage, but politics is always and inevitably part of the formula.

PM John Key first mooted the change last year and called for dropping the Union Jack as it represents the country’s colonial era “whose time has passed”. He also complained that New Zealand’s flag looks too much like Australia’s.

Key has complained. Like in Flag needs to ‘scream NZ': John Key.

“It’s just sheer confusion with Australia. Even at APEC [in China last month] they tried to take me to [Australian Prime Minister Tony] Abbott’s seat.”

We don’t want to follow the Aussies, we should lead them in flag distinction.

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