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In case you missed it

with 4 comments

Mr Farrar has a post up on Doug Graham and Jim Bolger pontificating over the state of co-governance, and how it got to where it’s at. I mean, really? Here’s my comment, ably supported by many on the post I see (waiting for Tony Stuart or the Veteran or even Mr Mapp to step in and proudly proclaim that “National has done much more for Treaty settlements than Labour” blah, blah blah). Like it’s just a game to them. Just do better than Labour, who gives a fuck about the country!

I don’t care what Douglas or Bolger say: their words are hollow.

They started this. They are unable to put the genie back in the bottle, as much as they might sit at home drinking port pontificating over their “hard” work as MPs. Not only did Doug Graham start it, his protege, Chris Finlayson, carried it on. You only have to read his stuff to know where the Nats stand on this. Why is Chris Luxon learning te Reo. Because he thinks he has to, not because he wants to, I betcha.

It’s like John Key and the Nats signing the UN Declaration of Indigenous People and saying they had no idea it would lead to he Pua Pua.

Or the Nats implementing the Resource Management Act via Simon Upton in 1991, and now saying “oh we never intended it to shut people out of buying a house”, which the productivity commission has said it has done. They’ve given Upton the role of putting together the three new replacement acts now! Madness.

So sorry, these two can take a jump. I don’t believe their crocodile tears.

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Written by Nick K

December 14, 2022 at 5:33 pm

The Ellis decision: Tikanga and the rule of law in New Zealand – Pt 2

with 11 comments

Part I is here.

In that introductory post, I said this part would probably be broken down in two subparts, and indeed that will be the case. This subpart will focus on the existence of tikanga into the common law of New Zealand prior to the Ellis decision. The second subpart will look at how radically the Ellis decision changed that.

To refresh, tikanga is described as:

I’m going to hold any comment on whether this should form part of our legal system until the final post in this series. For now, let’s look at how tikanga sat within our legal system prior to Ellis. A lot of this next information comes directly from the Supreme Court as opined in the decision. I have provided the decision (below) and readers can read from paragraphs [92] – [116]. It is relatively simple reading.

This will be sufficient for this subpart. I’ll see you all in subpart II.

Written by Nick K

November 27, 2022 at 6:05 pm

Posted in New Zealand

More evidence that National is simply Labour lite

with 4 comments

From tonight’s TVNZ News:

National leader Christopher Luxon has adjusted his message on taxing the wealthy, saying his party plans on leaving Labour’s policy alone if they win next year’s election – for now.

Speaking with Q+A this morning, he said the rate of inflation under the current Government has forced National to sideline plans to repeal Labour’s 39% tax rate on those making over $180,000.

“As much as we would like to do that, the bottom line is we will not be able to afford to do that in our first term.

“Based off what we’re looking at around interest rates, inflation and recession, that is something that we just will not be able to afford to do.”

I despise politicians who think the finances of government is more important than the finances of families and taxpayers. All of these things Luxon mentions, interest rates, inflation and recession, are all things that all households are now, and will continue to, suffer from over the next three years. Sure, he’ll adjust the brackets for inflation but all that does is allow taxpayers to keep up, not get ahead. And as Luxon rightly points out, he can do that with the stroke of a pen. That’s the key thing: It’s easy to do that. It’s clear he’s not in to doing something hard or reformative.

I read over at Kiwiblog that cutting taxes is inflationary. I call bunkum on that. But if it is, then surely the corollary is that increasing taxes curbs inflation. That being the case, why doesn’t National simply put up the top rate to 70% just to bring inflation under control?

I don’t accept this is Labour’s fault. Luxon/National can do this, it just takes some guts, something it appears they don’t have. That doesn’t augur well for what will be required to sort out this country’s messes.

Written by Nick K

November 27, 2022 at 5:49 pm

Posted in New Zealand

Five Waters treachery (and soon to be flora and fauna, airwaves, 5G, even the air we fucking breathe)

with 6 comments

From here:

The Government has been caught sneaking a rarely-used legal provision into the proposed Three Waters legislation which will make it harder for Parliament to overturn, National Justice Spokesperson Paul Goldsmith and Local Government spokesperson Simon Watts say.

This week, while Parliament sat under urgency pushing legislation through, Labour and the Greens added a provision that means once Three Waters becomes law, it would take 60 per cent of MPs to overturn it, instead of a simple majority which applies to almost every law passed, except for a few constitutional matters.

Give your party vote to Act next year to STOP all of this. You can vote National if you want a version of this shit that is basically “better”.

UPDATE: A week ago, the erudite and oft-principled, Chris Trotter, wrote a very good piece on our “democracy”. He was a week early with this gem:

With their single house of Parliament, their unwritten – and hence flexible and adaptable – constitution, and their highly efficient electoral machinery, New Zealanders are the masters of their own destiny to a degree unencountered among many peoples. Our courts cannot strike down legislation passed by the House of Representatives, nor can one Parliament bind another – both prohibitions guaranteeing a radically majoritarian mode of government. If the essence of democracy consists of giving effect to the will of the majority, then New Zealand must rank as one of the most democratic nations on Earth.

This week we have seen the Supreme Court continue its activist stance in declaring the prohibition on 16 year olds voting is discrimination and contrary to the NZ Bill of Rights. It only declared that, so yes, it did not strike down any legislation. But Ardern said immediately she would legislate to correct it. The Ellis decision (see here for Part I) introduces a new form of tikanga common law into New Zealand, again via an activist Supreme Court. And now we have this.

I really hope everyone is paying close attention to what is happening in this country and urging “te Reo” Luxon to wipe the floor of all of it (*snigger*)

Written by Nick K

November 26, 2022 at 4:35 pm

Posted in New Zealand

The Ellis decision: Tikanga and the rule of law in New Zealand

with 18 comments

Blogging is not easy on time, which for all of us is fixed. Nobody can make any more of it. Time is the enemy for a lot of people. I have a busy work life, and a couple of other interests keep me occupied, hence the time I can dedicate to this blog is regretfully limited. I would rather spend the reasonably limited amount of time I have for writing here dedicated to things that are useful and informative, rather than comment on the day-to-day socialism and slow degradation of this once great country through either the Labour or National governments.

The Supreme Court decision in the Peter Ellis appeal is one such useful and informative matter that I feel the general populace of this once great Westminster, parliamentary democracy needs to understand. So I thought it would be helpful for the generally small number of readers here for me to follow the lead of PaulL on Kiwiblog, who has written a number of excellent posts about our tax and transfer system economy, and do the same for the Ellis decision. I cannot stress enough to readers how significant this case in terms of the the social fabric of this country, the rule of law, and the legal and institutional framework of New Zealand moving forward. On this, I wholeheartedly agree with Stephen Franks’s description of things:

Courts now have a wide discretion to apply tikanga in any case they see fit. In addition, some commentators believe the decision has added another layer of complexity and uncertainty to the law.”

(Franks) goes on to comment that the decision should embarrass all New Zealand lawyers, “as a display of radical chic masquerading as legal reasoning”.

“Our top court can use the jargon, but if it understands rule of law principles it has decided they are just too yesterday – indeed ‘colonial’.”

In this Part 1, I will simply introduce the background to the decision and what it briefly said in terms of tikanga, and then try and explain what tikanga is. I say try and explain because not even the tikanga experts in the hearing could explain it, and neither could the Supreme Court adequately define what it is, and that is because it cannot be defined. That itself is a major problem.

In Part 2, I will break the case down and provide some sort of analysis, as difficult as that might be considering the case is both very complex (the Supreme Court acknowledged this) and is 126 pages in length. This Part 2 might even be broken down into subparts.

Part 3 will be focused on where-to-from-here. I’ll lay my cards on the table now in regards to this and say that parliament must legislate to override this decision and stamp its legislative authority on what is clearly an activist Supreme Court. There is precedent for this: Helen Clark with the Foreshore and Seabed Act. Clearly this government won’t go near this, but the new National/Act government must.

I cannot promise to produce three to four cohesive articles in short order, because as explained above time will restrict that. But certainly I will cover most aspects over the coming weeks. It’s simply too important not to.

Finally, it is very important to provide this commentary because our MSM is almost dead in the water over this. There has been little analysis and coverage. I recall seeing one article which basically said the Supreme Court decided tikanga could be argued on a case-by-case basis. That, my friends, is what is called misinformation. Martin Van Beynen wrote something half decent, here. But he’s from Stuff, so it counts for very little.

Background

There is no need to explain the Peter Ellis case background which dates back to his convictions in 1993. The case before the Supreme Court was centred on whether the Supreme Court could continue with the appeal against his convictions considering Ellis died in 2019. There were two parts to the appeal: 1) the issue of the posthumous continuation of the appeal, and 2) the substantive appeal itself – whether the convictions were unsafe and should be overturned.

In terms of tikanga, it should really have played no part in the appeal. It wasn’t anything that the courts heard in the decisions in the lower courts, and Ellis himself was not Maori and Ellis never introduced the concept of tikanga at any stage. So how did it become part of the appeal? Audrey Young explains it (paywalled Herald article):

It was Justice Susan Glazebrook who first suggested to Peter Ellis’ team during a hearing that it might develop arguments about tikanga Māori to support its case, despite him being Pākehā.

Now, it’s not unusual for judges to request of lawyers to prepare arguments on an issue that the judges deem relevant to the appeal, but perhaps the lawyers have not considered. But the important aspect of this is that the legal principle the courts want submissions on should bear direct relevance to the matter before the court in some way. And so here, Justice Glazebrook considered, in regards to the issue of the posthumous rights of an appellant, tikanga was a relevant issue to be put before the Supreme Court. There’s no possible sensible explanation for why this was necessary, apart from believing the Supreme Court wanted to stamp its authority on the issue, and perhaps guide the Law Commission which is producing some work on it.

Tikanga

The Supreme Court was guided by two experts who appeared at the appeal as Intervener on behalf of, well, not the New Zealand Law Society, but rather the Maori Law Society. The distinction between these is an issue in itself deserving of some comment, but for now it’s merely a digression. The experts in front of the Supreme Court were Sir Hirini Moko Mead and Professor Pou Temara.

They explained to the court that tikanga was, “the Maori common law”, and is “the first law of Aotearoa”. Note the tense here, not “was”, but “is”. In other words, it was never overridden and still exists.

So essentially tikanga is the Maori way of doing things. Interestingly, the customs of tikanga are “acknowledged when they are maintainted by the people and are observed as fact“. As observed earlier, this is essentially law, and apparently in New Zealand, it still exists as such. The elder experts continued:

So tikanga is a number of things as listed, once they are observed by the people, and then just noted to be fact. As I understand it, the reference to “people” is all people, not just Maori. As readers will note, tikanga is also a number of other things that are not listed above (“but are not limited to”). It is important to remember that this is now law.

This is the end of Part I. In due course I will provide the Supreme Court’s findings in regard to tikanga and how it operates in New Zealand.

Written by Nick K

October 25, 2022 at 5:58 pm

Posted in New Zealand

Ardern government’s authoritarianism reaches new high (or low)

with 16 comments

The news this morning that the police manipulated stolen vehicle reporting data to illegally and unlawfully access private tracking and tracing systems should worry all of us, at least those of us who still value individual liberty, freedom and the rule of law. If you’re an Establishment type, then I guess the means justifies the ends. If you’re that person, then perhaps you should stop reading from hereon.

To recap: This story outlines the background of a woman, or women, who was/were granted exemptions to travel to Northland during the Delta outbreak last year. Essentially, as Granny outlined in October last year:

Northland will move to level 3 tonight after a woman used false information to obtain travel documents and spent several days in the region.

Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said the confirmed case travelled from Auckland to Northland and had been to several places, warranting the change.

And it’s believed she was travelling with another woman who authorities have yet to locate.

A reporter at a hastily arranged press conference said they had been told the woman is a sex worker but Hipkins said he could not confirm that – he had not been briefed that was the case.

He said he was incredibly disappointed at the events which have led to Northland being placed into level 3.

“Updated information provided by the police today shows the case moved extensively around Northland after travelling there on October 2,” Hipkins said.

A manhunt commenced, these outlaws were guilty of being unhealthy and forging documents to spread their diseases! Off with their head.

But the truth shall prevail.

Documents that were meant to be declined were mistakenly approved.

The case of three women who travelled from Auckland to Northland hit headlines in October 2021 in the midst of a Delta outbreak – but new documents released under the Official Information Act finally outline the truth behind the saga, and the reason Northland was put into lockdown.

The OIA papers show the women – who had earlier been blamed for using “false information” to get travel permits – had no links to gangs and weren’t sex workers, as had been suggested.

Among the documents released is a summary of a police investigation into the women which found “no offence” and no “deception” in obtaining the travel documents.

So not only no offence, but no false information given, with the travel permit being issued in error. But the story gets worse. It turns out the police, in their valiant attempt at tracking down two dirty, unhealthy, disease-ridden citizens accessed private CCTV footage by, well, lying:

Police falsely reported cars as stolen to gain access to powerful databases that record number plates when hunting for the women whose travel sparked the Northland Covid-19 lockdown last October.

Detectives identified the cars associated with the women then listed the vehicles as stolen which opened access to Automatic Number Plate Recognition systems operated by two private-sector companies with a massive network of CCTV cameras.

Those companies – Auror and Safer Cities – operate cameras across petrol stations, shopping malls, big box stores, supermarkets and other shared public spaces.

A lawyer says revelations that police falsely reported a car stolen to gain access to private companies’ CCTV camera networks could undermine trust and cause information holders to question whether future requests from police were legitimate and lawful.

I literally have no words. This is nothing short of egregious and despicable. Not only have the police, aka the State, accessed private data unlawfully, they did so for basically a couple of women who not only had done nothing wrong, but were just a bit sick from a virus.

As readers will know, I have been utterly dismayed and disgusted by this country’s digressions from the rule of law during Covid. It is the most disheartening episode I can recall in my 50-odd years of living. The police march on the parliamentary protestors was the darkest day in this country’s history since the Springbok tour, all of it backed by both Ardern and Luxon. As far as I’m concerned, they’re both plagues on this country’s health, more that Covid ever was. And this revelation about the actions of the police is just icing on the cake, or rather, another very sour pill to swallow.

Written by Nick K

September 27, 2022 at 7:25 pm

“I needed to know what was going on”

with 4 comments

This morning I attended an excellent, informative business breakfast in Auckland where the guest speaker was former Commissioner of Police, Mike Bush. He gave an erudite account of how management of a police force, and particularly being in charge of major disasters, bears a lot of similarity with business planning.

One of his examples of planning and control was the Christchurch mosque attack in March 2019. He described how at Police National HQ there was a planning room of a very decent size, where they would head to in the event of a major operation. As news broke of Tarrant’s mayhem, off they went to plan the response.

One of the first things he asked for was for the live Facebook coverage of the carnage to be displayed on the big screen. He simply explained that he had to know what was going on, in order for him, and the police in general, to be able to respond, and what better way to know what was happening than to watch it live, despite how distressing it was to everyone watching. But he reiterated, as distressing as it was, he explained again, “I needed to know what was going on”. The correct response was only possible if he knew what was being said and done.

Of course, when the madness ended, and the shock and sadness was setting in, we all still needed to know what went on so that, as a country, we could plan, respond and educate ourselves to ensure it never happened again. Yet, Tarrant’s manifesto was banned and de-platformed.

I have a book on my bookshelf simple called “Hitler”. It is a biography of the murderous tyrant written by English author, Ian Kershaw. I am creeping my way through it, mostly due to lack of time rather than lack of enthusiasm. There are some graphic accounts of the man’s evil thinking – it is, so far, exceptionally informative.

Last night on the news was a story about how some so-called “extremists” are attempting to gain entry to elected positions at the local body elections and how their views should be given no air time. On Newstalk ZB this afternoon, host Simon Barnett took a call from someone defending not only these “extremists” right to stand, but demanding it. He explained that only by hearing what they have to say, and what they stand for, can society decide it’s wrong and not vote for them. Barnett got agitated. He questioned the caller about someone who proffered homophobic or Islamophobic views and essentially said this speech should be banned, and this pretend person should be prevented from standing if espousing such hatred.

Yes, he was serious.

I was discussing last night’s news story with my wife. I said to her, in a somewhat angry state because she was tending to take the side of the “banners”, that it is impossible to educate children on right and wrong unless and until we hear the views of the “extremists”. How is it possible to know Hitler’s views are repulsive, and his actions abhorrent, unless both are written about and taught? How can I explain to my make believe young son that what Hitler did all those years ago, and what Tarrant did and said in 2019, was evil, wrong and repulsive unless there is an open debate around such views and actions and I/we can teach our children how wrong this is? Simply put, we cannot.

This is why the cancel culture is going to ruin the very outcome those pushing the culture cancel want.

If we, as a country/society, allow this to continue we will succumb to a pile of State-fed propaganda, or misinformation. Sean Plunket came across it yesterday:

I agree with Lucia Maria in this post. I have been writing on political blogs since about 2004, so 18 years or so. I have studied politics and watched it since about 1996. I have never experienced the degradation of a free society more than I have in the last 2-3 years: I think this is the most serious issue facing this country.

Unless we have politicians in this country willing to promote and advocate for extremists to espouse their views, we will end up with a society of violence by extremists.

As Mike Bush put it this morning, in order to plan and respond for the future, “We need to know what is going on”. I expand that to what is being said.

Written by Nick K

September 6, 2022 at 10:09 pm

No words necessary

with 3 comments

Written by Nick K

August 27, 2022 at 7:38 pm

Posted in New Zealand

Lying disinformation from the Ministry of Health

with 2 comments

Recently, a Te Whatu Ora/Health New Zealand print advertisement run in most major newspapers included the text “Protect them for life. Immunise. COVID-19 vaccinations available for tamariki now”.

The Te Whatu Ora/Health New Zealand (Ministry of Health – Manatū Hauora) print advertisement shows four images of children interacting with parents/caregivers, a child being vaccinated, a father and child walking on the beach, a father and daughter doing a high five and a mother giving a thumbs up to her son. The wording states: “Protect them for life. Immunise. COVID-19 vaccinations are available for tamariki aged 5-11. To make a booking for your whanau or find a walk-in centre visit BookMyVaccine.nz or call 0800 28 29 26.” The advertisement includes the New Zealand Government and Ministry of Health logos.

Twenty nine people complained that the ad was misleading, false and some said it was criminally negligent to run such an ad.

The ASA upheld the complaint. It said, “The Board said the advertisement was misleading
because it implied if you vaccinate your child against COVID-19, this could protect them for
life, meaning for the rest of their life
“.

Disinformation by the government. Someone should inform these people.

Written by Nick K

August 24, 2022 at 10:14 pm

Posted in New Zealand

From He Puapua

with 3 comments

I don’t know why I’m reading this on a quiet Sunday night, but perhaps it’s because it is a quiet Sunday night.

Discuss!

Written by Nick K

August 21, 2022 at 10:27 pm

Posted in New Zealand

Tagged with