Presland on ‘Digital Harm Bill’ and ‘Dirty Politics’

At The Standard Greg Presland tries to link the passing of the Digital Harm Bill with Dirty Politics in The Cyber bullying law and Dirty Politics.

I saw this graphic last night online.  It is one of those perfect Crosby Textor focus group graphics that you cannot fail but to admire.

National cyber bullying graphicGet that?  If confronted about Dirty Politics National can now say it is doing something.

Get that? It looks like a long bow to me.

This particular bill is a PR smokescreen to try and reduce the negative effect of Dirty Politics.  We should have seen this and we should have called it for what it is, instead of thinking the best of National’s intentions and trying to improve their bill.  Tim Watkin is right, the law is poorly drafted, will have a chilling effect on media reporting and cartoons, and is an example of cynical politics.

This bill has been in the making for far longer than left wing activists launched the ‘Dirty Politics’ campaign less than a year ago. I’m not sure how the Bill’s origins go but submissions were being made on it in February last year, for example: Harmful Digital Communications Bill submission.

I’ve just checked and it looks like it goes back years. The Harmful Digital Communications Bill 2013 was introduced to Parliament on 5 November 2013 and had older origins:


This Bill implements the Government’s decisions on addressing harmful digital communications, which were largely based on the Law Commission’s 2012 Ministerial Briefing paper Harmful Digital Communications by:

  • creating a new civil enforcement regime to quickly and effectively deal with harmful digital communications;
  • creating new criminal offences to deal with the most serious harmful digital communications;
  • making some small amendments to existing legislation to clarify their application to digital communications and cover technological advance.

To try and slap a ‘Dirty Politics’ motive on this bill looks like, well, a bit like doing dirty politics.

And Presland heaps on the irony.

The left’s desire to engage rationally in the debate about the bill and try to make the bill somehow better is understandable but they should have realised that this was all a PR job and should have opposed it as a threat to the freedom of speech.

Some of the efforts to ‘engage rationally in the debate’ on the Standard thread.


 Just a case of Judith Collins masturbating her ego up as she produced a stupid law for publicity reasons (like the rather useless “crusher” law), and then fools in parliament putting in a law that will be used way way outside of the purposes that they recorded in Hansard. I suspect that the instances of its use for the purposes stated in the record will be minimal simply because it will be too hard legally.


Isn’t the poster meant to say:

“Bully the Government or any of our MPs online and you could face two years in prison.”

Emelia Lovett:

They got rid of John Campbell, now we losing our right to free speech, they already bully people to death, next the pricks will be popping people off!

Our government has so much class!

Judith, John, they come from what you call ‘proper breeding’.


If you look any Fascist state this is pretty much the same process they utilize. Legalize spying on people, undermine journalist standards and gag any who step out of line and then take away freedom of speech. Lets see what comes next……

I think there’s valid concerns about how the Bill may be used in practice but playing the Dirty and paranoid cards is hardly a showcase of ‘the left’s desire to engage rationally in the debate’.

How responsible is the Government for ‘safe’ houses?

Cold damp houses and deaths of people, particularly infants, have caused a lot of consternation. Some go as far as directly blaming the Government for deaths like this.

How responsible is the Government? They can’t be blamed for every death from any cause.

A guest post at The Standard looks at The Responsibilities of Government.

The death of Emma-Lita Bourne is not just a personal tragedy for the family: it is an event that should make New Zealand angry with the powerful people in our society who control the purse strings. They are responsible for condemning thousands of children to life-threatening conditions. And they are doing it in our name.

The reliable public health evidence is clear: poor housing conditions cause premature mortality. Our policy makers know that; those who decide on where public money should be spent know that; and yet too many of us simply shrug, express our heartfelt sympathies, and leave it at that. Well, we should be angry and we should be insistent on speedy change.

Fair enough to debate how much more should be done and how much more should be spent on safer housing. Alongside safer roads, safer workplaces, better medical and hospital care etc etc.

Politicians of the last few decades have presided over a significant increase in the wealth of the nation. As a result we have a very comfortable middle class. But a nation that harps on about its vanguard role in socially progressive developments in legal frameworks and its egalitarian ethos has become very unbalanced in its distribution of this considerable wealth. Those at the poorer ends of society have in fact gone backwards. Result: children die in mouldy and uncarpeted houses owned by us.

Some of this is questionable. For example carpeted houses can be less safe for some people than un-carpeted houses as carpets can harbour allergenic material.

I haven’t seen anyone analyse the state of housing now compared to say fifty years ago, when insulation was rare. Housing must surely be better generally for most people than it was a hundred years ago.

But we need to look at things as they stand now, and how we can do better.

It is time to recall one of the socially progressive developments where we were leaders rather than followers. New Zealand played a major role in ensuring coverage of economic and social rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This totemic document of the United Nations, designed as the blue-print for the rebuilding of societies destroyed by eugenic ideas that some people were of lesser worth, sets out in Article 25 that all people have the right to an adequate standard of living. It’s a right with a purpose: to allow people to provide for the health and well-being of themselves and their family.

It’s all very well saying “an adequate standard of living” is a right but perfect living conditions for everyone cannot be provided, even if it could be defined.

What about the right to let people choose their own standard of living? People can’t be forced to comply with certain living standards.

In fact, it isn’t just a matter of economic rights. It is actually a matter of the right to life.

That’s idealistic. We have certain rights to life but can’t have guarantees, except for the guarantee that we will all end up dying.

The state obligation is to take steps whenever it is aware that death is risked that can be avoided.

That is totally unrealistic. Should we ban anything that risks death? Ban mountaineering? Ban swimming and boating? Ban all sports and recreation? Ban all unsafe workplaces? Sitting in an office all day is supposed to have health risks.

It’s totally unrealistic to expect we can have 100% safe roads.

It’s also unrealistic to expect we can have 100% safe houses.

Even basics like coldness and dampness on houses have significant problems. My house is cold if i don’t heat it enough. It is damp and it gets mouldy if I don’t ventilate it enough.

So our officials cannot just stand by. Safeguarding the many children like Emma-Lita Bourne is not just in the nice to have basket: it’s in the need to have basket. Any avoidable and entirely preventable death is an absolute tragedy. But when it reveals a situation which we have promised will not be allowed, we should damn well be angry about it. So how should we respond? Well how about we insist on being true to our obligations and, given our proud record of being at the forefront of social progress, true to our values.

Kris Gledhill

Our officials haven’t been just standing by. They generally do as much as they can with as much budget as they can get.

Cold and damp houses haven’t just been created in the last few years. Improvements have been happening – insulation has increased significantly over the past decade.

It’s a very complex issue that can’t be quickly and simply solved. For example you can’t force people to heat and ventilate their homes.

We should be looking at what can be done to improve housing safety more. In a reasonable way.

One of the worst ways to encourage the Government and officials to address it better is to blame and shame them.

But that’s what’s happening. The post by Kris Gledhill means well, with some naivety, but some of the follow up comments are negative, unnecessary and counter-productive.

One Anonymous Bloke:

Arrest those responsible and extradite them to Holland to stand trial at The Hague. Send a message to the centre-right that for human rights abusers, there is nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.

There is no alternative: until they face personal consequences they will keep on killing children.


Their plan this time appears to be to dump social housing on to charities with insufficient resources, and trust that they will leak into the market that way.

Thus causing the mass exodus of families into their cars and trailer parks to die because of the irresponsibility of ministers with no moral compass.

I don’t think that we need to send Nick Smith to the Hague. I’m pretty sure we could deal with him here. I don’t care if we have to pass laws to deal with such people ignoring their direct responsibilities retroactively

Prentice is suggesting retroactive responsibility – does that go back as far as the Clark Government? The Bolger Government?

The Government cannot be held responsible for every death, and it isn’t fair to blame the Government for individual deaths, as sad as those deaths are.

We have a problem – not a new problem but one with new political focus – and we need to look at how we can deal with it better.

But if we prosecute and imprison all MPs whenever anyone dies it’s hard to see how we will make any progress.

Abusing and blaming is one of the most ineffective ways of getting politicians to listen and to act.

The Government has a responsibility to do as much as it can, but that involves juggling priorities. Those who dump on them don’t have to worry about the realities and real difficulties on getting a reasonable balance.

But no matter what the Government does they cannot ensure everyone heats their house adequately, or ventilates their house adequately, or keeps their carpets and beds relatively free of allergens, or budgets effectively, or the many other things that can contribute to a family’s well-being.

Conspiracy #83, #84, #85

Colin Craig was lampooned by the left for not categorically ruling out conspiracy theories. But Craig’s dalliance with conspiracies was a shooting star compared to the galaxy of conspiracy claims from the left.

Labour’s election review leak revealed quite a few who must have been abducted by aliens. For example from this thread at The Standard, ironically called NZLP Review of Election 2014; the Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

The GCSB has copies of the full review report from the earliest drafts.

Yes yes very good point… out of ‘national security interest’ of course. A few strokes of the keys and delivered into Paddy’s inbox with a (Labour MP) addy…. Silly young Gower would be none the wiser.


That’s probably why the traitor leaked Labour’s review to 3 and Gower, to deflect attention away from not just the Nats drop in public support, but noticeably from John key’s drop in support, and the fact that people are not accepting his bullshit over physically harassing and bullying a waitress at her place of employ.


I refuse to believe that someone within Labour would have leaked this report to Gower.

This leak is either a hacker or Labour has someone within its ranks who has been planted and leaks in the best interests of Labour’s opposition party’s, it seems implausible but at some stage someone has to start asking this question.

Then there’s the frequent claims there’s a major media conspiracy against Labour, like this today from Policy Parrot:

Its both appalling, sad and maddening at the same time to see what is essentially a huge fraud being perpetrated by the government against its legitimate critics, and the mainstream media’s/pundits inability/unwillingness to expose it for exactly what it is.

Too often the Key line is bought hook, line and sinker in order to avoid getting offside with the establishment, and in addition government schills (Henry, Plunkett, Hoskings, Smith) broadcast unbalanced anti-Labour propaganda from all the relevant media, and have it received as fact.

This isn’t to say that Labour needs to get its house in order, which it does, but the continual propaganda war to prevent a threat rising up, is approaching persecution. I kid? How many people that you might know casually outside of politics has expressed a pro-Labour value or statement to you recently?

This is a bit like Hitler in his bunker blaming the rest of the world’s propaganda.

And yesterday Lynn Prentice claimed that Key conspires with the IRD to excuse Cameron Slater from paying tax.

Not quite bankrupted yet. I hear that Cameron Slater managed to cough up $10k in assorted cash for court ordered costs to Matthew Blomfield. However that was just for the High Court appeal where Cameron lost his ability to shield his sources.

Of course that is just the first court costs.

Just before that he paid about $9.1k to Ben R’s account. It’d be really interesting to find out where he is getting his income from.

I am sure that the IRD would be as well if they haven’t been subverted by John Key and his mates.

[Shakes head]

lprent on Roy Morgan – “your usual shallow analysis”

In response to the latest Roy Morgan poll – see National 54% in May Roy Morgan poll – lprent looks like he has rushed into an analysis a bit carelessly.

[lprent: Don’t get your panties in a twist. It isn’t that interesting, Just looks like the usual outliers that RM’s small sample size throws out. This poll is unlikely… It is too big a jump and the explanations for it are pure trash.

Caution is warranted for a single poll with a big shift in support.

But Roy Morgan state “both landline and mobile telephone, with a NZ wide cross-section of 866 electors from May 4-17, 2015″ – that’s not a notably small sample size.

That was a 8.5% shift to National pulling support from every other party. It doesn’t seem likely.

Allowing for a margin of error of about 3.5% this could be an unlikely high but National got 52% in January, then 49%, 46.5%, 45.5% and now 54% so fluctuations over a wide range are normal.

The usual shit analysis at Roy Morgan as well. Talking about the budget last week when their polling period was May 4-17, 2015 and the budget wasn’t released until the 21st. Even the damn spin wouldn’t have been there for most of the polling period.

The headline states “Positive news in lead up to New Zealand Budget helps National”, and in his analysis  Gary Morgan, Executive Chairman, Roy Morgan Research, says: “National has enjoyed a strong increase in support in the lead up to last week’s New Zealand Budge”.

They are clearly referring to the lead up to the budget, which happened through the polling period.So the shit analysis is from lprent.

If it carries on through the next couple of polls I will get interested. But I’d expect a big adjustment down in the next poll.

Why expect a big adjustment down? Anything could happen in June – including a negative response to Labour’s poor budget response.

It is a pity that Roy Morgan are only releasing polls every month rather than every two weeks now. It means that their small sample size has 4 weeks until it corrects.

They have been polling monthly since the election last September, far more often than anyone else. So they provide the most useful data for seeing trends and fluctuations.

Again “their small sample size” is inaccurate.

Still good for a spinner to get excited about. I’d expect to hear you sprout your usual shallow analysis over the next weeks eh?]

Yeah. Ironic.

The Standard’s biggest enemy – part 2

The enemy within continues to expose itself at The Standard, but there’s an increasing amount of challenging of the top down toxic behaviour. As this exchange yesterday shows.

Phillip Ure:

big ups! to the unite union – eh..?

– for their david vs. goliath zero-hours-contracts victory over the fast-food behemoths..

unite – showing what a union can/should do..

the (rightwing) engineers union..?..following their long (self-interest-driven?) tradition ?

– not so

Te Reo Putake:

There hasn’t been a ‘right wing’ EU for twenty years, Phil. Do try and keep up.

Phillip Ure:


i must be imagining their long-silences during that poor-bashing clark labour govt

when/what changed..?..

..what did i miss..? tell..!

Te Reo Putake:

Mate, there’s so much you missed during your drug addled lost years you’d need a team of historians working in shifts to get you up to date. Best you just start from scratch and just assume your vague memories are as unreliable as your prose is unreadable.

Phil has been open about his drug history, and many including me find his prose difficult to digest, but this is just a nasty response – which is typical of Te Reo Putake, he frequently avoids debate by resorting to abuse and provocation. This is forbidden behaviour at The Standard but some there have always been allowed to do it with impunity.

There’s two major ironies here.

Te Reo Putake used to use the English version of this pseudonym, The Voice of Reason. He has personified unreasonable behaviour at The Standard for as long as I have seen him in action.

And he is now an author and moderator at The Standard. Like his mentor lprent he ignores there own rules, setting a sordid standard.

But there are people who are becoming willing to confront this sort of behaviour.

left for deadshark:

pointless abuse TPR

te reo putake:

I agree, that’s why I called Phil on it.

left for deadshark:

@ TPR,..Head shake…

That should read TRP,..i’m dyslexic.

or are you going too slam that to.

te reo putake:

If it’s true, why would I slam it? Phil made an unsubstantiated, anachronistic and inaccurate attack on a trade union. I responded and he doesn’t like it. His issue, not mine. His ignorance, not mine.

Who’s issue? Who’s ignorance?

Isn’t it funny that most attacks on the union movement come from people who aren’t union members? And in Phil’s case, someone who is not even in the workforce. But no worry, the unions have fought against prejudiced and ignorant attacks for many, many years, wherever they come from.

Dissing someone “who is not even in the workforce” while claiming “have fought against prejudiced and ignorant attacks” is uber chutzpah, but standard for Te Reo Putake.

And he continued:

Te Reo Putake:

Sorry, Phil, none of what you ‘wrote’ made any sense. Better luck next time. Still, terrific that a dedicated non-worker like yourself is so passionate about workers rights. Sure, you haven’t got a clue what’s been going on in the union movement, but that’s not going to stop you having an ignorant and inaccurate whinge is it?

Almost 10 o’clock, must be time for a mood adjuster. Off you go, the pipes, the pipes are calling, Philly boy.


left for deadshark:

I have been an union organizer, and my reading of history shows sexism, racism, and sometimes even corruption, and of coarse your attack on the underemployed is also unhelpful, but seeing you are an author here as well, and making some good points too, I will dissed from further comment, and read more thoroughly terms and conditions here on TS.

The care one must take at The Standard calling an author/moderator for their poor behaviour. However speaking up seems to be happening more often – good on those prepared to risk it.

the pigman:

 I can’t stand the patronising/sarcastic style either. I think it turns most people right off (they are just so used to it they don’t say anything), so thanks for speaking up.


FFS it starts again. Grow up, the both of you. Phil, do some research before running your mouth and TRP, if you don’t like what he has to say, don’t make the slapdown personal. Aren’t you a mod on this site? You should know better. Now sort your behaviour out or there won’t be any pudding

Murray Rawshark:

Your attitude to the unemployed would fit well with that of the NAct caucus. Since when is unemployment or underemployment something to use to belittle someone?

You have also not managed to give one example of anything progressive the Engineers’ have done in the last twenty years.

Te Reo Putake:

Oh, do piss off you pompous git. I have no ‘attitude’ to the unemployed or unemployed. From what Phil has told us, he doesn’t fit into either category.

Murray Rawshark:

Are you actively lobbying for a grand coalition between Labour and National? You’ve got acting like an arrogant and abusive fool down pat already. Simon Bridges could learn off you.

I have no idea why you even bother being on a “left wing” blog. Your attacks on Phil are almost indistinguishable from those he used to receive on Whalespew.

But yeah, you’ll keep going. Almost never discussing anything in good faith, but always with vicious defence of the right of the labour movement.

I personally do not think you should have any role in moderation of this blog. You are far too abusive. However, I know I don’t get a say.

The moderator-in-chief is far too abusive too, but hey, this is the standard of The Standard.

Te Reo Putake:

Oooh, I think I smell burning martyr! Get off your high horse, Murray. Funnily enough, my moderation is pretty, er, moderate. Just a couple of bans so far I think. And it’s pretty easy to tell the difference between moderation and commentary. Moderation is in bold black ink. Commentary is on a blue background. I haven’t moderated anyone in this thread, nor would I, because it’s simply a discussion. Nobody has crossed any line, except you trying to tell TS who should and shouldn’t be a moderator. But even then, you’re not being moderated by me. So, get over yourself, why doncha.

A veiled threat in “Nobody has crossed any line, except you trying to tell TS who should and shouldn’t be a moderator” – TRP is correct, he doesn’t moderate much, he prefers lprent does it for him.

And TRP has history of blurring the lines between commenting and moderating. Like this example of when he responded to being called for a lying attack:

You acknowledge I’m an author, yet you call me a liar. The TS policy is pretty clear about abuse of authors. Would you please withdraw and apologise.

That wasn’t in bold black ink, it was a normal comment. And he continued in that thread. Amongst the ironies in his comments (which started with an accusation he made that he couldn’t defend reasonably so kept abusing):

That you are still try to weasel out also confirms another aspect of your character; moral and intellectual cowardice.

TRP pretty much sums up that specific example and himself in general there, and an increasing number of people are prepared to call him on it.

And the hypocrite-in-chief revealerd more than he realised on a related thread:

Murray Rawshark:

I must remember to only give TRP shit as a warmongering lackey of imperialism. As an author, he is beyond reproach.


Actually a pretty good summary of the basics of how it operates.

I don’t like the personal attacks because that is what drives authors from writing posts. It tends to be like doing a thesis or a program. If people have been having a go at you then any distraction will stop you. Sometimes you just give up.

But you can have a go at what they write. Generally that just encourages them to write more effectively next time.

You will note that when I have to intervene, I try to ensure that the commenter causing me the aggravation gets exactly the same kind of in your face unfair crap that they have been handing out. I find that this dissuades them from wanting to write that way again as well. Unfortunately they seldom seem to get the irony.

An lprent fails to get the irony here. Oodles of irony.

He and TRP don’t just dish out “exactly the same kind of in your face unfair crap” – they are the chief aggravators, and they then hide behind their ‘moderator’ status.

Standard authors can make ‘personal attacks’ as much as they like – and TRP and lprent do it frequently – but it’s forbidden to call them on it, at risk of being banned. Despite this hovering threat an increasing number are prepared to take the risk and call them on it – or confront TRP at least, who is too much a coward to do the banning himself.

The Standard’s biggest enemy is within their own ranks. Rank hypocrisy, abuse, bullying and cowardice.

Contrasting moderation styles

In contrast to the moderating shown in Kiwiblog troll is this from The Standard.

In the Colmar poll post:

Sable 5

Stupid people are allowed to vote too….

Further down the thread:

Alan W 13

hey Sable, how about a serious reply to Fisiani’s 10.30 am post – rather than your banal, ill-tempered comment at 7.41 am.
Calling 49% of the voting electorate stupid is not particularly constructive.

[lprent: Demanding behavioural changes on this site is the realm of the moderators. It is not the purview of pompous idiot trolls like yourself. You can yank on your dick/brain for pleasure elsewhere.

Sable’s comment was an exact paraphrase of the electoral act. So what was your point? That you really could do with a personality transplant?

This is your warning. Trying to usurp the role of a moderator and wasting my time again will result in long ban from this site. I was thinking of a couple of months… I figure that it’d take you that amount of time to read the policy. ]

That’s funny considering the number of times a number of participants demanded that I change my behaviour, and how often demands are made that others change their behaviour.

And anyway this was far from demanding, it sounds like a fairly reasonable query on a blog.

And lprent loads the irony on thick:
“pompous idiot”
“could do with a personality transplant”
“wasting my time again”
“So what was your point?”

Alan W13.1

Sable said, “stupid people are allowed to vote too”
How is that an exact paraphrase of the electorate act?????

UPDATE: since been added:

[lprent: You really are thick aren’t you? What is the basic principle of any law? Where does it say in the Electoral Act that to be able to vote you must not be stupid? There are limitations about age, coercion, residency, and prison residence. But there are none stopping the stupid from voting. Therefore they are entitled to.

That you are entitled to vote is probably a good place to start thinking from. ]
(A paraphrase is ‘a restatement of the meaning of a text or passage using other words’. Sable’s comment was nothing like a paraphrase or any part of the Electoral Act – PG)

That question crossed my mind too, but questioning authors at The Standard risks being banned.

The Act allows most kiwi citizens to vote, regardless of mental capacity. The same rule does not apply to commenting here at TS, as you may soon discover.

The brave TRP joins in under lprent’s umbrella of abuse. Also very ironic, given the mental capacity on display. And they are still blind to the self inflicted damage, even when it’s pointed out to them in black and white.


yeah. the left wonder why they gain no traction. they’ve been saying this sort of shit now for years and still don’t see the problem.

te reo putake

Nope. I’m pointing out that your behaviour here can also be seen as stoopid.

One could consider how one’s own behaviour looks TRP.

And it goes on.

The lost+sheep 13.1.2

It may be a paraphrase, but that doesn’t alter the fact it displays a breathtakingly facile assumption of the intellectual superiority of The Left.

As such, and considering that Sable is willing to post it on a publicly accessible forum, it is the stupidest comment I’ve seen for some time.

But I stand shoulder to shoulder with the moderators in defending Sables right to make a complete arse of his/her self in that manner.

[lprent: You can make an arse of yourself as well and do so on a regular basis. I guess that is what happens when a herd animal like those damn wooly trolls leaves the flock.

Sable isn’t “The Left”, any more than you are the voice of the jerkoffs of the world. Sable speaks for themself, just as your sticky hands speak for you.

Just so long as they don’t cause me or the moderators any more work than is required, people can say what they like on OpenMike. Making work for me can consist of making comments that implicitly request me to look at peoples behaviour and finding that there isn’t anything to look at. You will find that listed under the self-martyrdom (or in your case the self-baatyrdom) offences. ]

That’s the standard of free speech on the Labour left.

Ultimate ironies

Lynn Prentice continues to try and defend his ignorance and bluster – and has tried to block all access to The Standard. What’s he trying to hide from, me spotting his bull and exposing it? He continues trying to defend himself – digging a deeper hole.

The old Auckland City council was a teeny area and a teeny population compared to whole of the Auckland city. It was dominated by a couple of pretty rich suburbs where some people voted.

‘Felix’ pointed out:

Um, Auckland City was a small geographic area but it actually had a population larger than either Manukau or Waitakere. Hardly teeny.

I highlighted this in lprent is right and Prentice

I was exaggerating a bit for effect, but Auckland city has been falling below a third of the Auckland region population for about as long as I have been around.

He then provided figures that show it was 33.7% (1986) to 30.6% (2006) of the greater Auckland population, nothing like ‘teeny’ even allowing for exaggeration, and still the largest of the four component cities in 2010. He now claims:

Sigh…. You don’t think that 30% is a smaller portion than 70% in population.

Of course 30%-ish is smaller than three other city populations added together, but hardly “a teeny population compared to whole of the Auckland city”.  And he has the chutz pah to say:

For someone else I’d call this simple sloppy work. But you have a track record of writing bullshit like this. It is called lying by omission and is something that you seem to share with Nick Smith who also routinely lies in a very similar way. Don’t show the source of the material and carefully drop a few inconvenient facts that counter your arguments.

Even felix called him on his sloppy work and ‘lying by omission’,  showing his own “a track record of writing bullshit like this”. And now he has taken his obsession with trying to shut me up to a new level of childishness. He had threatened to not only ban me from The Standard, he said “ I will have to think about doubling the penalty for wasting my time“. Well, he has wasted even more of his time. He has tried to divert any of my attempts to view Standard pages to a self portrait of himself. That’s the lengths he will go to to try and avoid scrutiny of The Standard. To show how he has wasted his own time yet again, here’s the latest post at The Standard:

Here’s a handy index to truther claims and the rebuttals thereof. Should save you some effort in future iterations of this argument. Skepticism is healthy when applied to TPTB but not so useful when opining on matters requiring some training in engineering or science. There are plenty of real conspiracies happening under our noses, no need to add a fictional one (the military surveillance state, brazen bankster rorts, TPPA and the sale of NZ for example)

I guess the lecture about how he has confirmed his ban and extended it and blocked me. He threatened:

To give you an incentive – you are banned for a year for lying about this site – unless you can provide one by the end of easter. Then I remove as much access as I can to this site from you.

I wonder what he will try next in his obsession to try and avoid scrutiny? How old is Prentice?

lprent is right

Lynn Prentice is right, in a ‘Labour left’ sort of way.  No conspiracy, in an ironic sequence of comments at The Standard, showing how ‘lprent is right’.

  • tracey

    Well, in the context of the person you and I responded to, who was speaking of “one term wonder”, there is an argument they must have been referring to all mayors.

    I have lived in Auckland for over 45 years and they have always been colloquially known as the mayor of Auckland. Auckland’s mayor and so on…

    But, so as not to sit on the fence, lprent is right cos he runs the show ;)

    [lprent: Argggh don’t say that. I saw some obvious shit while moderating and made a comment about it (that doesn’t happen that often). Now look what you’ve done. I’m pretty sure that PG will have invented a conspiracy out of it by morning. After all it is his forte – making something out of nothing. Kind of like United Future – he was natural fit.

    Hmmmm I’d better stop scanning and go to bed. ]

    • felix

      “they have always been colloquially known as the mayor of Auckland. Auckland’s mayor and so on…”

      It’s all context. And it depends what part of Auckland.

    • alwyn

      “lprent is right cos he runs the show”.
      That is a reason that is totally impossible to argue with.

      It reminds me of the story of when Henry Ford II, the chairman of Ford sacked Lee Iacocca, who was at the time the President of the company.
      When Lee Iacocca tried to argue with him Henry simply told him that I can sack you because “My name is on the building”.

      I was probably only being rather pedantically picky anyway because I’ve finished all the Telegraph and Cryptic crosswords in last weeks Dom/Post issues and was a bit bored.

  • What you demonstrated was that you simply aren’t a native Aucklander, a resident immigrant from elsewhere in NZ or the world, or even someone who actually thinks about their bullshit outside of your little world.

    The old Auckland City council was a teeny area and a teeny population compared to whole of the Auckland city. It was dominated by a couple of pretty rich suburbs where some people voted. They often voted twice or more if they had businesses in the CBD, which is why the Epsom/Parnell and external business cliques tended to dominate it. Which was why we got some pretty damn flakey idiots from the right on the council, including the ever manipulable John Banks.

    Until the late influx of apartment housing and the growth of 50-60k in population in the late 90s and 00s, I think it was one of smaller people populated cities in Auckland.

    Perhaps you were thinking about the old Auckland Regional Council, which ran the cross region services.

    The Auckland Council is larger than the ARC.

    What you did was try to state something that was false to fact, and quite apparent to the Aucklanders uncomfortable enough already with this daft unworkable supershitty that bloody Act foisted on us – ignoring almost everything sensible that was in the Royal Commission’s report.

    You then proceeded to play daft semantic games. The usual response to obvious stupidity ensued. Because you pissed around, ignoring the valid arguments put to you about how daft you were, I’d expect that this will keep popping up as an example whenever you make an unthinking assertion from here on out.

    • felix

      Um, Auckland City was a small geographic area but it actually had a population larger than either Manukau or Waitakere.

      Hardly teeny.

And in fact hardly teeny in area either.

Prentice was in one of his less abusive moods, with some careful tiptoeing by others pointing out that he was wrong. Without backing up their telling him he’s wrong with any links to facts which for some is a ban-able offence :) – but felix is likely to get away with it, he’s one of the usually protected resident attackers.

This final sentence from lprent could be worth remembering:

I’d expect that this will keep popping up as an example whenever you make an unthinking assertion from here on out.

I doubt many will be game to keep popping it up at The Standard.

The facts of the matter – populations as at 30 June 2010 (before Auckland was merged into a super city):

And the Auckland City area doesn’t look ‘teeny’ in comparison either:

The orange area is urban Auckland City (2010) (which includes Waiheke). The urban parts of the other three cities are grey. Areas as at 30 June 2010:

Source: Wikipedia

Further irony considering lprent’s recent accusations:

For anyone interested, Pete George announces proof of a moderator violating the policy with Eddie imposing a ban after PG made an assertion of fact without bothering to back it up with anything.

As usual the lazy fool doesn’t provide it where specified and he clearly hasn’t ‘read’ the policy.


So you made an assertion of fact and a moderator called you to provide proof on it. This is explicitly defined as being an offense in the rules of our site.

Because of your track record of avoiding providing proof of your assertions (a tactic that we call avoidance), Eddie imposed a time limit and a penalty in advance (just as I did here).

Despite having a track record of making things up and avoiding providing proof of his assertions “lprent is right cos he runs the show”. Classic.

UPDATE: I’ve added links to number sources, it was slack to leave those out, I’d meant to but forgot to add them.

In the meantime lprent has posted on this at The Standard:

I see that PG raised the same point in his usual snide fashion, and as usual not linking to his source – which means that it is useless. He also lied with numbers on the geographic area calcs by carefully removing Franklin District, Rodney District and probably a few others. I guess that was why he left out the source.

I don’t expect him to apologise for accusing me of lying, again. He seems to have a habit of accusing people of lying if he doesn’t like what they say or when he is held to account – when he can’t ban them. When show up his natural inclination seems to be to go dirty/abusive, and then waffle.

He also tried a lame excuse for getting things so wrong:

I was exaggerating a bit for effect, but Auckland city has been falling below a third of the Auckland region population for about as long as I have been around.

“Exaggerating a bit for effect” is lspeak for getting it wrong. He had said “The old Auckland City council was a teeny area and a teeny population compared to whole of the Auckland city.”

He then shows it was 33.7% (1986) to 30.6% (2006) of the greater Auckland population, nothing like ‘teeny’ even allowing for exaggeration, and still the largest of the four component cities in 2010.

Prentice proves himself wrong, and more

Ok, I know this sort of post bores the hell out of some people but I like to put things like this on record so that next time people like Lynn Prentice try to claim I have lied it’s easy for me to produce proof to the contrary.

And I think it’s useful to challenge and expose the way New Zealand’s standard bearer for the Labour left operates – under a culture of lies and abuse. While it’s on a lesser scale to what Whale Oil was The Standard persistently practices dirty attack politics, promoted and protected by Prentice.

One of the most ridiculous aspects of Prentice’s April Foolish outburst is he proves himself wrong. He says:

So lets see you find evidence to the contrary in previous bans. Go and find any instance on this site where you have been banned where this site got upset at “…being challenged or having alternatives to their controlled message being expressed.”, as opposed to being kicked off for violating an existing rule on our site that you either walked too close to, ignored or disliked.

I already checked while writing the post and there are none. I have provided explanations each time for why you were banned framed in terms of OUR policy. So show me one where that isn’t the case.

I’ve already provided Proof that Prentice is wrong on a past ban, and there’s more examples. He must not have had time yet to post his apology (based on his past record he’s more likely to launch another fact-less rant).

He also proved himself wrong with his latest rant and ban. He posted:

You have consistently lied here and on other blogs about why you were banned. You have been banned from other blogs and then lied about why you were banned. In my opinion, you are a toxic blogger who seems to lie. In all cases you appeared to lie to play the victim.

To give you an incentive – you are banned for a year for lying about this site – unless you can provide one by the end of easter.

Bizarrely with this ban he proves himself wrong. He hasn’t kicked me off “for violating an existing rule on our site that you either walked too close to, ignored or disliked“. He hasn’t referred to anything I have done or said since returning from my previous ban.

He has quoted something I posted last month here on Your NZ that obviously got up his nose as the reason for the ban.

So beware, under Prentice’s new application of his make-them-up-as-he-goes rules if he finds something anywhere in social or mainstream media he doesn’t like he can and will ban someone for it if he chooses. That’s a new level of ridiculous blog moderation, more so than the Cameron Slater/Pete Belt and Martyn Bradbury levels of paranoia at being criticised.

And it’s especially ridiculous because a blog moderator can ban anyone they like any time they like for any reason, it’s their blog, their rules. At least Slater/Belt and Bradbury don’t go to thios amount of bother  to come up with erroneous ‘rule’ breaches as an excuse, they just do it (albeit secretly to not draw attention to their  controlling of their messages).

But wait, there’s more.

All high comment blogs have rules which you expect to follow when you are on those sites. They are there to minimize the amount of work that the moderators have to do. But Pete often doesn’t follow the rules as can be seen in this comment to an author that got him banned.

Thanks for the reminder about your deliberate dishonesty.

And thanks for the opportunities to keep demonstrating your dishonesty. So far you’ve managed to keep that out of your authoring (that’s been promising) but you’ll find it’s difficult to keep the two separate – lying at one level will end up impacting on another.

He attacked one of the new authors directly and personally, which is something that I can do but he is very limited in what he can do. That is against the policy about attacking the site or authors. That policy is in there for a particular reason. It is hard to get authors to write for nothing on a site. So we tend to protect those people who give up their time to do so because this is the authors site.

This relates to Te Reo Putake who is a long time commenter at The Standard, and has a history of persistent lying and abusing and breaking Standard rules with impunity – I can recall Prentice defending his behaviour, typical of his double Standard.

This incident began with a comment from one of TRP’s stalker apprentices, One Anonymous Bloke, who said:

No, I mean none of your false interpretations, Racist George, and I haven’t the slightest inclination to explain it to you.

Why weren’t you at the Pegida rally?

That, as is common with OAB, breaks Standard rules but that’s allowed for some. I replied:

You always seem to duck for cover when challenged to back up your rhetoric. And you’re off topic on this thread.

“Why weren’t you at the Pegida rally?”

Because it was on the other side of the world. I thought even you would have worked out something obvious like that. Why weren’t you at the counter protest?

But I’ve backed Newcastle Unites from here. Have you?

OAB frequently attacks people (not just me) and rarely backs up his attacks with any facts, and as he does here he refuses to support his attacks. This is against the rules but again, usually impunity.

Te Reo Putake joined:

Wow! Only distance prevents racist Pete from marching with the fascists. Thanks for the unintended honesty, schmuck.

And that’s when I responded (as per above), to TRP as a commenter. This was on Open Mike where TRP had no involvement as an author. But he tried to protect himself with author status.

You acknowledge I’m an author, yet you call me a liar. The TS policy is pretty clear about abuse of authors. Would you please withdraw and apologise.

I responded:

I made it clear you’re a liar as a commenter, not as an author and re-emphasise that. A persistent liar that pre-dates your authoring. You can’t hide behind a higher status for your low commenting.

[That is a distinction that I do not recognise. Tone it down – MS]

And so it went on until later lprent stepped in and banned me because I “attacked one of the new authors directly and personally”. Because that long time commenter had attacked me directly and personally. But because that commenter has just become an author his abuse and attacks can’t be confronted.

Back to lprent’s April foolish post where he also said:

But what got him banned was not that directly. It was that he managed to make a whole long comment thread about this purported “dishonesty” and didn’t provide ANY examples. Not one link. No referenced quotes to point to it. Nothing…

OAB and TRP and a number of others contributed significantly to making “a whole long comment thread “. That’s what they frequently do, and they’ve also often then accused me of disrupting threads. Standard practice.

OAB and TRP didn’t provide ANY examples. Not one link. No referenced quotes to point to it. Nothing…

And lprent even acknowledged that TRP had provoked things (a frequently broken Standard rule “we’re not prepared to accept are pointless personal attacks”):

But banned one month only because TRP was winding you up.

While the comments thread now doesn’t show this because moderator comments aren’t time stamped apparently on reflection  lprent later acknowledged:

lprent: It is a valid point. But FFS phrase the responses better. I don’t like cleaning up reaction messes.

Except that it wasn’t a ‘valid point’, it was deliberate pointless personal attack.

After the ban I requested a right of reply, which I was given.

Can I exercise a right of reply?

But I really find it objectionable to see it when the idiot critic (ie you) neither links to an example of whatever they are moaning about nor explains what it is so that I can look at the issue. That is lying by omission in my book – something that in my mind characterises your usual writing style.

I’ve explained here a number of times – and have specifically pointed that it was TRP lying by omission. Which he has continued to do.

He claimed to have quoted me but hadn’t, and then when called on that repeatedly part quoted me, lying by omitting the whole quote.

If you support that sort of tactic from one of your authors then so be it, it’s your blog.

Don’t ever target my authors again with unsubstantiated and unlinked smearing as a tactic. To me that appears to be what you are doing here.

It’s pretty obvious that this began and continued with TRP “with unsubstantiated and unlinked smearing as a tactic” and continuing doing that.

If you don’t allow any response to that sort of tactic you’re being as bad as Bradbury and Slater in the way you censor out things that show up your crap.

That’s a bit sad isn’t it, especially after you claiming the high ground on comment control in your spat with Bradbury.

Yes he wound you up. Complain to me or in general. Don’t target authors personally because I really really need them more than I need you.

FFS. He and others try to wind me up all the time. As if you hadn’t noticed. And then get wound up when I call you on it. You sound wound up now. Tch tch.

The next time that I see you do this kind of deliberate targeting, I will boot you off for a year.

You’re accusing me of deliberate targeting. Very funny. But somehow I suspect you don’t see the joke.

But banned one month only because TRP was winding you up. ]

I’m not questioning that, I’m happy to have a month off. TRP et al with have to find someone else to try and wind up.



As I (think) I probably said. I don’t have time to trace every previous discussion and I lack the ability to read minds remotely. So I look at the comment based what is in it and have a brief look at the conversation around it. Which is why TRP got a public warning and a private discussion about future behaviour. Which is a bit unusual because I generally rap knuckles on authors using the back channels.

It appears that he jumped in and banned me, then had a proper look at it and gave TRP a rap on the knuckles for being at fault. Standard double standard.

But treat authors differently. Link to supporting info when having a go at them because the balance of the moderation shifts for them. I don’t treat them as commentators anymore simply because we need to retain them to write conversation starters for this site. With authors I balance my need to retain authors against ‘fairness’. But the supporting information had better be in the comments I am looking at because I won’t go looking for it. I simply don’t have time with the numbers of comments that flow through here. ]

So commenters need to dot their ‘i’s and cross their ‘t’s with supporting comments and stil get banned but authors can personally attack and then make things up that were demonstrably false – I provided supporting information despite lprent claiming I didn’t.

Now lprent et al can do whatever they like at The Standard. Their blog, their lop-sided rules often ignored rules and double standards.

And I can point this out here, putting the way they operate on record.

And I can also point out that this is a very poor look for the main New Zealand forum representing ‘the Labour left’.

And I’m not the only one pointing out the dogs breakfast of standards at the Labour left Standard led by the mongrel who’s all bark, lprent.

There’s been lengthy and on-going (up to yesterday) examinining the culture at The Standard with no involvement from me, that amongst other things has discussed things like authors abusing their status, imbalance of power and the use of bans – Murray Rawshark was banned much to the consternation of supporters, some of whom have gone on a comments strike for the duration of his ban.

This began on a post Winston takes Northland by author . Murray’s comments from here:

“But unfortunately Winston didn’t tell anyone about his plans to run until very late in the game – a luxury of being a one-man band who doesn’t have pesky party-democratic processes to deal with.”

Yeah, Labour really knows how to work with other parties. Step 1: insult them.

Winston and his party have succeeded in rocking Key, so what does a good Labour social democrat do? Give the credit to Andrew Little. Way to make friends and influence people.


Yeah, it’s not an official party statement. It is however a statement from someone perceived as being aligned with them.

Stephanie’s response/warning:

I am a member, but Murray’s comment is still rather too close to the line about ascribing posts on this site to official Labour statements.

Murray – don’t do that again.

And don’t tell me who I can give credit to. Winston clearly ran a good campaign but he got there with significant help from the Labour (and Green, and probably Mana too) voters of Northland.

Murray responded:

Sorry for having an opinion. I will never ever comment on one of your posts again. Have a nice life. By the way, I didn’t tell you what to do at all. I said what I thought of what you’d done. Also forbidden, I see.

So he voluntarily opted out of commenting any more on any of Stephanie’s posts but was still slapped with a ban.

[Stephanie: You said it two comments above: “Labour really knows how to work with other parties”, referring to my post. I am not the Labour Party, and you’ve commented here long enough to know that there are very simple rules about insinuating that this blog represents Labour. Pretending that you’ve been warned for “having an opinion” is just rubbish. But if you want to be a martyr so badly, take two weeks off.]

A lengthy discussion ensued, and later continued from Murray’s right of reply statement here. The Standard is not a happy place.

The Standard proclaims it is a forum for the Labour left, and most of the named author posts are from Labour party activists, but for some reason they are super sensitive about being seen to be associated with the Labour Party.

The more they make a fuss the more attention they bring to it.

Prentice in particular goes to great lengths to stomp on on any suggestion of any party influence in Standard posts. His super sensitivity is curious, as is their secrecy.

If The Standard openly and honestly promoted Labour Party interests, and if they applied even handed moderation on personal attacks and lies (that would cramp lprent’s style), they could be a great standard bearer for the Labour left.

But they choose to be anal and abusive. That’s a real shame.

Not all of them. Greg Presland and Anthony Robins do the bulk of the author attributed posts their at the moment and they mean well, do a fairly good job usually, and keep clear of most of the dirt. But their credibility is dragged down by the general culture of The Standard. That’s also a shame.

But they choose to operate within the culture and at least tacitly approve of it. Presland gets drawn into the double standards less than he used to still dabbles at times.

Prentice leads from the bottom and a number of other regulars lead frequent often abusive attacks on anyone and anything they disagree with or deem an enemy is some way, under Prentice’s example and protection.

And that’s the impression many casual visitors to The Standard will get of how the Labour left operates.

And as hard as he tries Prentice can’t separate the Labour left and the Labour Party in many people’s impressions.

They keep shitting in their own nest, led by Prentice with his verbal diarrhoea.

(And I’m aware that offering advice like this to The Standard is a ban-able offence – I’ve been banned for it before for doing it at The Standard but new rules of anywhere apply – so lprent may use this as an excuse to slap an extended ban on me. Funny in a sad sort of way.)

Proof that Prentice is wrong

This post provides evidence that Lynn Prentice is wrong in his challenge to me on 1 April 2015:

[lprent: Ok, since you appealed. In effect you are appealing previous judgements. Jurisprudence indicates that an appeal has to find that the laws and process were improperly followed.

I didn’t appeal, he’s either misinterpreted or is fibbing some more. I told him “You’ve pretty much just proved my point. And haven’t got the guts to back up your bull. Have a happy year abusing anyone else you disagree with”.

Instead of posting my response he edited his own lecture adding a number of things including claiming “since you appealed”, which is clearly misleading and looks dishonest to me.

So lets see you find evidence to the contrary in previous bans. Go and find any instance on this site where you have been banned where this site got upset at “…being challenged or having alternatives to their controlled message being expressed.”, as opposed to being kicked off for violating an existing rule on our site that you either walked too close to, ignored or disliked.

“This site got upset” breaks one of Prentice’s own rules – “Attacking the blog site, or attributing a mind to a machine (ie talking about The Standard as if it had an opinion), or trying to imply that the computer that runs the site has some kind of mind control over authors and commentators is not allowed”.

I already checked while writing the post and there are none. I have provided explanations each time for why you were banned framed in terms of OUR policy. So show me one where that isn’t the case.

You have consistently lied here and on other blogs about why you were banned. You have been banned from other blogs and then lied about why you were banned. In my opinion, you are a toxic blogger who seems to lie. In all cases you appeared to lie to play the victim.

To give you an incentive – you are banned for a year for lying about this site – unless you can provide one by the end of easter. Then I remove as much access as I can to this site from you.

So he has asked me to prove something but has already found me guilty and sentenced me. One example follows a similar line of attack – threaten a ban unless I can prove them wrong.

who pointed out he’s voting for asset sales he never told his electorate he would support.

I’m calling bullshit on that, it’s been shown many times that Dunne’s (and UF’s) position was clear to anyone who cared to take any notice prior to the election.

Repeating this accusation is either blatant ignorance, or…

It’s not Dunne who’s angry, it’s a handful of unionists who keep trying to overturn the election result because they failed in November.

[three choices. Present evidence Dunne explicitly said he would support the partial sale of the energy companies and air nz, withdraw your comment, or face a three month ban. You know perfectly well the UF strategy was to never explicitly endorse any sales but, rather, to rule out sales that aren’t on the table, thereby misleading the public on your position on the actual asset sales. You did it yourself here. If Dunne accidentally revealed the truth even once I didn’t see it and nor did anyone in Ohariu. Eddie]

I knew the UF strategy better than Eddie nor Zetetic as I stood for UF in the 2011 election. We did not oppose National’s asset sales policy. I campaigned on that basis. I remember clearly that media also accepted this position and I remember getting that confirmed from at least one journalist..

Eddie nor Zetetic were wrong so I challenged that. Rather than them prove they were right I was threatened with a ban. And later that day Eddie banned me.


I told you to show Dunne explicitly said he would support asset sales. You have failed.

Your links do not show Dunne saying he would support National’s asset sales. Some mention asset sales that he wouldn’t support selling, but none that he would vote for. Indeed, the comments you link to are exactly the underhand muddying of the waters I mentioned above.

Allegations by Dunne’s critics that he would support asset sales are not Dunne explicitly supporting asset sales.

See you in three months.

So I was banned for nor being quick or thorough enough in proving an incorrect claim had been made. Now it was evening I had time to find proof.

People’s Power Ohariu acknowledge Dunne campaigning on accepting asset sales:

“A lot of voters have told us since the election they believed he was opposed to state assets, although during the election campaign he did say provided there were particular safeguards he would support the sale of state assets, so there appeared to be a transition in his position coming up to the election,” says John Maynard, spokesman for People’s Power Ohariu

Eddie’s retraction of the ban:

[Pete, congrats on tracking down the one time Dunne’s strategy slipped and he admitted he would support National’s asset sales. It took you along time and no-one else had been able to find such a quote. So, congratulations, you’ve proved that Dunne accidentally told the truth once in a forum that no-one noticed. Ban rescinded. Eddie]

Repeating lprent’s challenge:

Go and find any instance on this site where you have been banned where this site got upset at “…being challenged or having alternatives to their controlled message being expressed.”, as opposed to being kicked off for violating an existing rule on our site that you either walked too close to, ignored or disliked.

There was no rule violation mentioned and I don’t think I broke a rule. That the ban was rescinded suggests no rule was broken.

I didn’t personally attack an author, I didn’t abuse anyone, I didn’t accuse Eddie or Zetetic of representing Labour in any way, I simply challenged something I knew from close personal involvement was incorrect. I think it’s clear here that I was banned because Eddie disliked me challenging Zetetic’s message.

If lprent’s memory needs refreshed read the whole post and thread, it was not one of The Standard’s better moments – Dunne angry.

If lprent won’t accept one clear example that proves him wrong and proves I wasn’t lying then I can come up with more.

I’m not asking for the current ban to be rescinded, I don’t care about that.

I think a retraction and apology is appropriate from lprent in the same manner he accused me of lying, via a post at The Standard. In particular address this:

You have consistently lied here and on other blogs about why you were banned. You have been banned from other blogs and then lied about why you were banned.

And if he can’t prove I have lied about why I was banned on all other blogs (I mean actually why or reasonable perceptions of why, taking the whole context into account) then apologise for purporting to speak for other bloggers as well.


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