Thursday, June 18, 2009

Anti-smacking and John Key

I don't understand the whole anti-smacking thing.  And I don't understand why John Key is falling out of favour with certain National Party voters over this issue.  Some people are even comparing John Key to Helen Clark, saying he's adopting her 'I know best' mantra.
John Key and Phil Goff both know that Labour lost the last election in part due to their 'bossy boots' style government.  So the electorate is sensitive to it, and so am I. 
But the anti-smacking issue just doesn't push my buttons.  Maybe it's because I don't have kids.  Regardless - I'm okay with the fact that this law is written for the lowest common denominator i.e. people who don't understand the difference between a smack and a beating.
Under normal circumstances I reject nanny state, lowest common denominator crap.  But when it comes to child abuse I don't mind making the exception.   

WASHINGTON - The State Department this week asked Twitter to postpone a scheduled maintenance shutdown of its service to keep information flowing from inside Iran amid the growing crisis over its disputed election, three US officials said.

That's brilliant.  Having spent some time on Twitter I can understand why it's such a powerful tool.  The search function is instantaneous and delivers results for tweets only a few seconds old.  You can get a snap-shot of what people thinking and see what the trends are.  For example many people were dismayed by the BNP winning seats in the European Parliamentary election. 
Best of all it's not filtered by the media or the government.  So people power indeed.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

DPF’s blog polls with my responses


DPF has done a nice summary of his recent blog polls. 

I voted in a few of the polls, but you tend to miss the polls if you’re reading posts via RSS or neglect to see them in the side bar. 

How I voted, or would’ve voted is showed in red.


  1. The 2009 budget had 51% rate it good or very good, 33% poor or very poor and 16% neutral. Very good.
  2. On the possibility of tax cuts going, 37% said they would only be slightly upset as the recession has forced it, 20% said they would be very pissed, 18% totally furious, 17% only reasonably pissed if postponed only and 8% hate tax cuts so glad they were cancelled. Slightly upset.
  3. 58% approved of Christine Rankin’s appointment and 42% did not. I approve.
  4. 76% disapproved of the appointment of Michael Cullen to the NZ Post Board.  I disapprove.
  5. 47% said National should postpone future tax cuts.  Support postponing.
  6. 60% think possession of cannabis for personal use should be a criminal offence. I think it shouldn’t be a criminal offence though I’ve never done the stuff myself.
  7. 90% backed the restoration of titular honours.  Support!.
  8. 57% supported sinking the Sea Shepherd over the Japanese Whalers.  Support.
  9. Least desired city to be forced to live in was Wanganui at 44%, Palm Nth 32%, Hamilton 16%, New Plymouth 9%.  Probably Palm Nth. 
  10. 54% have downloaded a TV show not yet available in NZ.  Not guilty. 
  11. 76% blamed Hamas for the deaths in Gaza.  Yeah, Hama’s mostly at fault.
  12. 38% said 2009 will be better than 2008, 28% said it will not be and 34% said it will be only if we get the chance to boot Winston out again. 38% category – I’m loving politics without Helen and Michael. 
  13. 51% said they would rather go without the Internet for a fortnight and 49% would rather go without sex. Heh, beggars can’t be choosers. 
  14. 71% supported the use of urgency to pass laws before Xmas. Support.
  15. 11% are missing Winston.  I DON’T miss Winston.  I only wish Jim Friggin Anderton joined him.
  16. Only 46% think Goff will lead Labour into the 2011 election.  I think Goff will lead Labour into the next election.
  17. 75% had a favourable impression of the new Ministry.  Favorable! John Key is the Helen slayer.
  18. 38% said the best part of election night was a clear National/Act majority, 27% Winston losing, 23% Helen resigning, 11% did not enjoy it and 3% the electorates National won.  Probably Helen resigning.  I’m only guilty of personality politics to an extent as there’s much evidence indicating Helen’s corruption. 
  19. 57% said they were voting National, 26% ACT, 7% Labour, 5% Greens.  National! Yeah!
  20. 48% have voted for Labour at a previous election.  Nah.. but don’t preclude the possibility in the future. 
  21. 47% supported extending the retail bank guarantee to wholesale borrowing, 30% did not and 23% said follow the experts.  Following the experts – Especially if one of the experts is the former reserve bank governor who’s last name begins with B.


As for David Bain – all I can say is that I’m glad I wasn’t on the jury.  I change my mind depending on what I read.  It’s an interest case because it can be approached from so many different angles. 

One thing is for sure, the police stuff up the investigation. 


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I stumbled upon the article above.  John Key’s approach to the GEC has caught the attention of newspapers and bloggers around the world because there are a good number of people out there who crave for a John Key style leader.   So as a consequence John Key has received a disproportionate amount of coverage relative to the size of New Zealand.  Coverage I’m sure his predecessor would have died for.

Even though Key has avoided the a ‘big bang’ approach favoured by K Rudd, Brown and Obama, the New Zealand Government’s response to the GEC is the fifth biggest in the world on a per capia basis.  And the budget spend for the 2009 budget increased by over a billion dollars.

So even though Key is reprioritising spending – the reality is his approach isn’t that different from the other advanced economies. 

The difference mainly lies with his rhetoric.  He doesn’t seek to create a new world order like Rudd and Brown but rather fix flaws in the current system and move on.  It’s less dramatic and attention seeking but it’s reassuring. 

So all the Aussies, Americans & Brits out there who yearn for a John  Key – too bad.  He’s ours. 

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Pew News IQ quiz

This was unexpected.. managed to achieve 12 out of 12 in the Pew News IQ quiz.  Only 6% of the public managed to get the same score as me. 
I guessed a couple of questions - I've no idea what the Dow Industrial Index is at.  Apparently ~5000.