Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Guess which party this came from

... it was not right to put pregnant 16 and 17-year-olds into council flats and leave them on their own. Instead those who were supported by the taxpayer would be "placed in a network of supervised homes", shared with others, to give them "a new start in life where they learn responsibility and how to raise their children properly".

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

THIS IS WRONG


Ok, I guess I am going where Angels fear to tread but the sight of mourners (Shane Jones and others) at Sir Howard's funeral wearing RSA poppies is offensive.

I know my old colleague and fellow Vietnam veteran, Sir Wira Gardiner, would argue that Marae protocol would have it that it is acceptable to exaggerate to make a point but I suspect that he would draw a line over this.

Sir Howard may be considered a 'warrior' in terms of the entertainment industry but to the best of my knowledge he was never a soldier entitled to the respect earned by those who served their county in uniform.

And the pity of this is that Sir Howard would never claim that particular honour.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Fonterra has been poorly managed, but farmers were right to say no.

Fonterra is down to 21% assets to debt, this is dangerous territory for a Co-op with a redemption clause.I posted earlier in the week about Fonterra and got a few acerbic comments. They remained unanswered. I was simply too busy at work to respond properly and one comment referred to a capital ratio of 21% that needed checking before responding with the facts before me.

Busted Blonde has had now another crack on the basis of those comments. So here is a more considered response. There are fair viewpoints on all sides. I have done a little research and am now clear about why Van der Heyden went. My basic position has not changed in response to Wheelers or subsequent comments from Nigel.

Firstly a bit of a mea culpa in that I had not kept up to date with Fonterra financials in the last few years and assumed they were merrily tracking at around 50 % gearing. But lo and behold they are indeed down at 21% equity to total assets meaning the banks will be all over them.

Nigel refers to "Fonterra is down to 21% assets to debt, this is dangerous territory for a Co-op with a redemption clause." But the notes to the accounts give them a get out.
Payment for the surrender of shares may be made at the option of the Company by:
– the payment of cash; or
– the issue of capital notes.
The Company also has the option to pay the surrender value in special circumstances by the issue of redeemable preference shares.

Meaning if they dont want to give cockies who want their surrender values cash they dont have to. It is a bit of a nucelar option but the option is there.

If you back out their "cash flow hedge" negative reserve and associated liabilities and compare to the position two years ago they have a more healthy but still poor 29% equity.

Given it is fairly obvious bankers selling them complex derivatives and hedges they did not understand is part of the reason for the 21% equity things are in a bad way but by no means close to terminal.
Their inventories have blown out from 53 days to 71 reflecting current poor export conditions. There are a number of other indicators of a company that has tripped heavily.

So instead of a strong corporate looking to move on to the next step in their development internationally this is a temporarily weakened company with a Chairman, Board and Executives in the last chance saloon looking to bail themselves out from their indiscretions.

The farmers rightly assessed that selling out now would be selling out in a position of weakness rather than strength and that the result of saying no to capital raising would be a clear out in board ranks, some over leveraged farmers going broke and the industry continuing to own itself.

What really really surprised me is that Fonterra has less than $4bn of equity. With 11,000 farmer suppliers that is an average implied shareholding of $350,000. Which is quite a substantial investment for the average farmer. It provides them with a very effective retirement fund. And industry self determination, of which more later.

It is now apparent to me that a price bubble has been going on in farm prices and milk payouts over the last few years. Bankers are effectively willing to finance the purchase of shares as part of the land price. The availability of cheap credit, booming dairy prices and Fonterra's willingness to pay out the bulk of those earnings as dividend to finance the increased farm mortgages. Only a fool would have increased the payout from $4.50 per kg of milksolids in 2007 into $7.69 in the 14 months to Nov 2008 with the credit crunch happening. There was no holding on for the rainy day. The financial position of Fonterra reflects poor management rather than a flawed co-op model so far.

To Nigel's point that Dairy Farmers of Britain is in receivership. Precisely the position that will occur when farm suppliers have no international trading and are purely limited to subsidised supply to supermarkets like Tesco. My point exactly as to why farmers should maintain control of their own destiny. Tesco and the other supermarkets chip away at the price until it is simply uneconomic to supply. That turns farmers off the farm and is not a path that should be followed by the dairy industry in NZ which is of such strategic importance.
On to the flaws of the mega co-op model. Nigel again:
They face very poor, in fact perverse incentives, to maximise the return from value add, because value add requires capital, and capital requires Fonterra to hold-back dividend returns.

You can't have both. Its logically inconsistent, and a cash starved, dumb, politically driven beast is the result.
I can agree with Nigel about the poor management that has got Fonterra to where it is now. But it does not change my basic point which is that a well managed co-operative that wanted to grow would keep low farm payouts and increase their market investment in value added activities. My mea culpa is to agree with Nigel this has obviously not taken place to any serious extent. $4.50 to $7.79 indicates fools not investors. Like any company the failure to reinvest will doom the business in the long term. I had heard various noises about Fonterra investing overseas but their financial statements show that is negligible.

On Fonterra being a price taker or a price maker it has the size to take its products directly to the end user international supermarket chains consuming brand products. The farmer owns a part of that. Fonterra has obviously failed to build its brands sufficiently as about 80% of revenue remains commodity or ingredients segment. The dairy market innovation in UK supermarkets is not being lead by Fonterra. Danone and Dairylea are much superior.

So my conclusion is that Fonterra deserves much of the criticism it gets. Poor management is poor management whether owned by a co-op or a corporate.

It is reasonably obvious that the dividend retention should be much higher and that Fonterra needs to buy an international dairy products company that has marketing skills. For that it will need to substantially reduce the dividend for a number of years and/or partially split its marketing arm off and obtain corporate funding for this. I remain completely of the opinion that farm ownership and control of Fonterra is sensible.

Fonterra were taken to the cleaners on derivatives and hedging in the last few years and it is fatuous to think that would not happen again if the same management team has their eyes on the paybacks that corporates offer and Fonterra sells itself to the sharemarket in a time of weakness.

UPDATE: OK, now I understand. The long term, and I mean 5-10 year interests of shareholders and management are misaligned.
From the notes to the Financial statements
Long term incentive plan
For certain key executives, Fonterra operates a Long Term Incentive (“LTI”) Plan. This plan is by invitation only and is designed to motivate,
reward and retain key executives.
The plan has the following features:
• The plan sets a Total Shareholder Return (“TSR”) target over a three year period
No amount is earned if Fonterra’s TSR is less than 11%
• A new 3 year cycle commences each year
So management have an incentive to starve the business of capital for new investment in order to ensure they get a bonus. Establishing new markets that make such profits may take 5-10 years. So a 3 year horizon explains why they are undercapitalised.



Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sue Bradford for Len Brown's deputy?

Len Brown must have something go seriously wrong with him after his massive heart problems for him to come out and back Sue Bradford onto the new Auckland Council.

Why would anyone endorse one of the most divisive and unpopular politicians in NZ as a partner on the new council? With this kind of judgment, Len Brown isn't fit for a community board, much less the biggest job in politics after the Prime Ministership!

Who will Len endorse next for a potential team mate? Winston Peters? David Bain?

The Shrivelled Organ of the Left

Relied upon for more than nine years to spread the gospel of St Helen, the odious Sunday Star Times



today stoops to a new low with a manufactured story purporting to show that the troops and officers of the Special Air Service somehow are unhappy about their deployment to Afghanistan.

Read the piece and you will see it contains not one item of verifiable fact. Just line after line of supposition and innuendo - written in the style one has come to expect from the so called peace movement and the other useless organs of the left.

The piece de restistance is this fatuous self serving claptrap.

"The Sunday Star-Times has been given information about new SAS missions, but is withholding details that might compromise unit safety."

"Given information" by whom? John Minto, Nicky Hager? Kieth Locke?

If the Sunday Times cared one jot for the safety and security of our troops it would not print ridiculous junk like this report.

So the Recession is over?

They reckon the recession is over.

1. Hopefully there has been a change in human nature regarding consumerism. People will once again understand, not the cost of something, but the value. Retailers that continually try to hoodwink people with fake sales deserve now to fail. People should know a fair price and be prepared to pay it. They should also learn to negotiate. If you do not ask you do not recieve.

2. The worst is that Key and National have missed the boat to use the recession to actually make some structural changes to our economy and more importantly, our psyche.

Borrow money, run deficits, 9 day fortnights, cycle tracks, housing allowances, UN security councils. Yep they really made the most of it.

Now we will stagger on as an economy buying and selling stuff between ourselves, slaves to commodity prices, high interest rates and a dollar we have no control over.

What a wasted opportunity to show some real leadership, hand some responsibility back to the people and say that the government can no longer be all things to all people.

Update. We spend $160mil a day but can't keep this open 24/7. We want core activities NOT social welfare engineering. Get a spending and tax structure in place that we can afford and incentivises people to work and create wealth. Who wants to invest in business here when all you are is a tax cashcow to feed people to do nothing.

The relief of being declared free

I am so relieved. I have been having nightmares, but its all OK now. Red thinks I am not a socialist. Simply by virtue of the fact I post here.
You might find sympathy for your smug supercilious utterings among socialists, but on No Minister and other similar places we're free thinkers and free speechers, with a history you know nothing of, and you are an unwelcome and odious interloper.
Red is trying to discourage Pablo from recording his views here. ( As is Adolf for that matter). Always welcome on my comments Pablo.

For the record I think PC was within his rights, but misguided. I have had various discussions about unmoderated comments. I believe in free speech and now simply don't engage when people lose the plot. Which seems to be the case on Red being outed, all over the blogosphere. PC will be trembling with fear at being labelled of the left.

I simply cannot fathom how free speech and comment moderation go hand in hand. We offer a public forum and occasionally somebody says poo. Inciting criminal activity such as assassination or defamation steps across a line.


A Comments Storm

In a fit of anger, Adolf fired a couple of shells across Peter Cresswell's bow the other day.

Oh well, that's got it off my chest, I thought. Nothing much happened and there were a couple of desultory comments as the day wore on. Much later, some misinformed disagreeable rube came along and was firmly repulsed.

Ho hum.

Imagine my surprise when today I find I can't get outside into the early morning sun because there's a pile of comments a mile high, wedged like a snow drift against the front door.

http://www.inforum.com/media/full/jpg/2009/03/12/13drifts2.jpg


Isn't this blogging caper a funny business? How often have you slaved over an erudite piece of astute analysis, marvelled at its acuity, honed the poetry of the phrases and, with a glow of all round virtue, hit the 'publish post' button - only to watch for a day as the world passes you by?

Was there ever any doubt..............?

Dopey headline of the day













(Tks to Yahoo)
G

Sue Bradford - Classic comment of the terminally deluded


… the s59 repeal … against which popular opinion is strongly united

r0b at KiwiPolitico on Sue Bradford On what basis do you conclude this? I’m not aware of any valid survey of public opinion on the topic, are you?

followed by

Why buy in to the claims of the noisy to represent the majority?

And this in a post on Sue Bradford. There is simply no hope for people like this who can pretend 82% of the population were too stupid to understand the question.

Like many I have no doubt about Bradfords integrity but she is so utterly misguided in her views that she helped NZ continue down the path to moral and financial bankruptcy.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Blogging Etiquette

Nothing annoys, nay angers, Adolf more than bloggers who ignore the simple rules of blogger courtesy.

Among other things, bloggers are expected to respect pseudonyms, desist from link whoring and refrain from personal abuse of blog hosts. You'd think these simple little courtesies shown to one's fellow man or woman would not be too difficult.

Not so, it seems. In the last two weeks there have been two disgraceful incidents of bloggers 'outing' other bloggers. The first was the appalling case of Barnsley Bill's identity being splattered all over the front page of the local newspaper as a result of another blogger's shameless blabbing to a journalist.

Today we have none other than Peter Cresswell, a person I thought had more brains, publishing what he thinks is Redbaiter's real name and address.

All Adolf can say is that Not PC's credibility is zero. His despicable actions speak louder than all his fine and fancy words. It seems Libertarians think other people's privacy is something with which, when it suits them, they can take liberties.

As for the other fellow, words fail me.

WHAT WILL BRADFORD'S DEPARTURE MEAN TO THE GREENS?


Love her or leave her, no-one could have ever been in any doubt as to where Bradford was coming from. So, what will her departure mean to the Green Party electorally?

Bradford never made any secret of the fact that she (and Locke) are on the left wing of the Greens.

I suspect that her advocacy on behalf of the unemployed and low wage workers probably won some of that constituency over to the Greens at the expense of the Progressives (and Labour). Whether they remain in the Greens fold is a moot point.

But I also suspect that her left wing militancy probably turned some voters off the Greens. My take on that Party is that they are the ultimate Chardonnay Socialists ... preferring to discuss the saving of the planet/whales/possums etc from the comfort of their living rooms while looking askance at the antics of the Bradfords of the world and treating them as you would an unwanted relative coming to stay.

So on balance her departure is probably a plus for the Greens. It makes voting for them a more respectable option for dissatisfied and unthinking voters looking for a home.

The Veteran picks the Green vote to go up.

The Troff List

1. The game may be over but history will always record the final score
Bradford 1- Democracy 0

2. John Key is doing a great job to ensure the State Quo is maintained. Keep taxing and spending. Then trim a few 0800 numbers to show that you are serious about cutting government spending.

3. Politics simply reflects human nature. What's in it for us first and society second.

Friday, September 25, 2009

What a Selfish Prick

The bloke in Matamata who shot his wife.

Adolf's spies tell him she told him the night before he shot her that she was leaving him.

They have three children, the youngest aged eight. The kids will be scarred for life.

Would have been better that he blew his own brains out. Trouble is he would have had such a small target.

More Bad News For Labour

Sue Bradford's announcement that she will step down from Parliamentt caps off a disastrous week for Labour.

http://www.3news.co.nz/Portals/0-Articles/117566/suebradford320nzpa.jpg


Adolf believes we are seeing the decommification of The Greens as the party seeks to rehabilitate itself with New Zealanders and take the role of opposition away from the train wreck which is today's Labour Party. (Thanks to Helen)

Watch for an immediate boost in the polls.

Watch for Klocke to be the next watermelon to walk the plank and pursue 'other political interests.'

On is left to wonder what Madame No Smack will do. Someone suggested she might have a go at the Auckland mayoralty. If only it were true. Can you just see all the carefully laid plans of the idiots from Labour going up in smoke as Bradford steals just enough of their vote to give John Banks a landslide?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Economic Debate

SOMETHING TO DO TOMORROW NIGHT (FRIDAY)

An Invitation …to a timely economic debate “The global financial crisis proves the free market is unreliable - we need more government intervention to grow New Zealand's economy.


Mecca Café Cnr Remuera Rd and Nuffield St, Newmarket Friday 25 September,5:30pm (for a 5:50pm start).

Moderator: Dr Don Brash

Featuring Professor Tim Hazledine (University of Auckland), Bernard Hickey (interest.co.nz), and Peter Conway (Council of Trade Unions).

Free entry but a small donation to cover costs would be appreciated. Parking is best in the Farmers Carpark on Broadway near the Newmarket viaduct followed by a 5 minute walk.

Goff Goff Splutter Splutter

It's the economy stupid.



The last two days have produced two headlines Phil Goff did not want to see. They are the headlines which cement in his party's looming defeat in 2011.


This week is the week Labour's slim chances were killed off for the next eight years.

The two headlines are linked, with dairy farmers already off to their banks to adjust budgets and plan spending for the significantly increased cash flows arriving in October, November and December. These will almost certainly ensure positive GDP growth in the December quarter so it only remains for the September quarter to show marginal growth and we are well and truly on the way.

It is quite clear that had Labour been in government, the recession would have continued. Their borrow and spend policies and their commitment to the non productive public service would have seen to that. National and ACT will have no trouble hammering this message home as unemployment conveniently declines during the run up to the 2011 election.

Meanwhile, Labour's loser strategists relentlessly pursue yesterday's story, Bill English's housing arrangements.

THE VETERAN VS ANDERTON

The Veteran is determined not to let the rort in respect of the parliamentary allowances paid to Jim Anderton continue unchallenged. Below is a copy of a letter sent to the Auditor-General requesting an investigation into the matter.

23 September 2009


Office of the Auditor-General
Level 2, State Services Commission Building
100 Molesworth Street
Thorndon
WELLINGTON


Dear Sir/Madam

I am aware you have been requested by the Rt Hon Jim Anderton to carry out an investigation into the housing Allowance being claimed by the Hon Bill English.

Can I ask that you carry out a parallel investigation into the additional payments received by Mr Anderton as the Parliamentary Leader of the Progressive Party.

It is a matter of public record that Mr Anderton has stated that the Progressive Party will not stand candidates at the next general election. Additionally he has advised members of the Progressive Party to join the Labour Party and seek to stand for them. More to the point however is that he has been appointed by the Labour Party as their spokesperson on Agriculture.

Mr Anderton is leader of a Party in name only. To all intents and purposes he is a member of the Labour Opposition. It is a rort that he continues to claim the additional payments that accrue to the leader of a separate political party.

I look forward to your advice on this matter.


Yours sincerely


etc

Be sure your sins will find you out

Unlike right-wingers, I've always seen Margaret Thatcher not as a staunch defender of liberty, but as a weasel politician like any other. So it was nice to have that view confirmed by this article in the Times.

Two months before the fall of the Berlin Wall, Margaret Thatcher told President Gorbachev that neither Britain nor Western Europe wanted the reunification of Germany and made clear that she wanted the Soviet leader to do what he could to stop it.

You can't trust those Russians - ask them not to write down what you're saying, and they do anyway:

Then she launched her bombshell. She asked that her next remarks should not be recorded. Mr Gorbachev agreed — but the Kremlin transcript included them anyway, noting laconically: “The following part of the conversation is reproduced from memory.” She spoke of her deep “concern” at what was going on in East Germany. She said “big changes” could be afoot.

And this led to her fear that it would all eventually lead to German reunification — an official goal of Western policy for more than a generation.

She assured Mr Gorbachev that President Bush also wanted to do nothing that would be seen by the Russians as a threat to their security.

Hilariously, the article describes how the Russians were left wondering whether they were going to have pull down the Berlin Wall themselves, as no Western leader wanted it to happen. Check out the following conversation:

[Vladimir] Kryuchkov [head of the KGB]: Tomorrow 500,000 people will come out on the streets of Berlin and other cities . . .

Gorbachev: Are you hoping that Krenz [Honecker’s replacement as party boss] will stay? We won’t be able to explain it to our people if we lose the GDR. However, we won’t be able to keep it afloat without the FRG [West Germany].

[Eduard] Shevardnadze [Foreign Minister]: We’d better take down the wall ourselves.

Kryuchkov: It will be difficult for them if we take it down.

Gorbachev: They [East Germany] will be bought up whole . . . And when they reach world prices, living standards will fall immediately.

So, in the end it really was only the Germans who grasped the nettle and tore down the wall. The Western leaders didn't want it because it suited them to have Germany weak and divided. And bizarrely, the main reason Gorbachev didn't want it was because of the disastrous economic effect it would have (and did have) on the DDR. The man really does deserve more credit - and Thatcher a lot less.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

ON BEING CHEEKY


Ok, being a bit cheeky and if I have transgressed I now submit myself to a good rollicking by Adolf (no spanking mind you).

If you care to go to TradeMe and bid on item 243512409 then you will be forever in my good books.

I am donating the proceeds to the Ex-Vietnam Services Association (Neville Wallace Memorial) Children's & Grandchildren's Trust which I am privileged to Chair. The Trust helps the offspring of Kiwi Vietnam Veterans realize their dreams.

You may care to visit our website at http://www.evsayouthtrust.org.nz/

Thank you.

Damsel in distress or dunce in denial?



The lady pictured here needs our help.


This I know to be true from this
billboard I saw yesterday beside Parrs Cross Road in Oratia
There upon it was Lynne's wee face, all earnest and concerned, and below that was the plea
"Save Our Trees" and "Trees Need Protection Now", followed by a summons to a public meeting.

It was immediately obvious to me that the trees on the property that Lynne lives on, with whoever, are under some kind of threat and she's trying to recruit locals to help her, and whoever, keep them from harm.

Surely that must be the case. If not, what trees can she be concerned for?

Not the trees in the local parks and reserves? Surely they are the responsibility of the Waitakere Eco- City Council, and thus in very good hands.
Could it be? No, surely not.. It can't be true...... but it looks like Lynne's labour party sense of socialist collectivism could be raisng its head here and she's talking about trees on my and my neighbours properties.
Sad but true I fear.


Here's a challenge:

The photo below
was taken from our front deck in West Auckland and I'll wager a bottle of rough red that at least 99.9 of the trees in it will still be there on October 2nd 2009, 2010, and in five years time there'll probably be even more trees in the frame.

Dear L
ynne, you really need to learn, along with the rest of the leftys, that the constant scaremongering, and the desire to interfere in everybody's business, is what what saw you and your party change sides in the big house.

Also if the trees in Auckland are only going to remain standing as a result of legislation then don't trees in other cities also require similar laws to protect them. I trust that very soon you'll be bringing a private members bill to protect trees in Wellington, Waitomo, and Te Awamutu etc from their owners?


Hand wringer.

G

Asleep At The Wheel Again

The antque media.

At 1130 hrs today dairy farmers across NZ received a news flash on their cell phones. How do I know?

Adolf was insuring a young share milking couple with five pre-school kids when the call came through.

Electrifying it was. Stupendous news.

The forecast payout has been increased by a whopping 55c to $5.10 per kilo and the first advance is up to $3.60.

Nearly four hours later and it doesn't even yet rate a mention in the online news services.

Pathetic.

Dairy farmers and not supporting a quick buck.

Brent Wheeler seems like a normally rational person from what I recall of occasional MSM pieces. I just read his piece on Fonterra via Roarprawn and have to take issue.

Suppliers maximise returns by obtaining the highest possible prices for their product - not by leaving plenty on the table for dividends to the owners. High cost of supply to the company sits well with the supplier and poorly with the investor.
When the supplier is the investor this is argument is a circular nonsense and ignores two obvious points. The farmer is quite entitled to stop supplying one dairy company and offer supply to another. Additionally the farmer is an investor and will benefit from the company which is able to offer the most added value. Evidence the high premium on Tatua supply farms. Tatua is a small dairy company with a consistently high payout relative to competitors including Fonterrra.

It is well worth the farmers while to accept short term growth in order to maintain control over their buyer and eventual market price. What they lose on the swings of supply price they make up for on the roundabouts of Fonterra dividend. Better the tightly controlled Directors who know full well they had better pay attention to their farmer shareholders than being subject to the complete lack of control evident through highly distributed shareholdings amongst many disinterested pension funds interested in only their quarterly returns and not the long term health of the company.

The Silver Ferns meat reference is just laughable. "Silver Fern Meats whose latest capital raising efforts imposed restrictions to limit non farmer investment to 20% ended up with a shortfall in capital raised. " I have previously posted on the meat industry. There is a huge difference between the asset rich low return meat industry and the dairy industry. Market ideology and evidently Wheeler says farmers should follow the highest short term price. Yet farmers are capable of seeing the returns that the likes if Dairy Farmers of Britain are able to return for their famers, despite the supposed protection of the EU. UK farmers are getting lower than economic returns and steadily going out of business as the likes of Tesco & Asda chip away at their milk supply margin with no correspondent rise in dividend to compensate.

To me Fonterra is like democracy. The worst solutions apart from all the other possible solutions. Fonterra is the worlds largest trader of dairy products. It needs to grow rather than stagnate but putting itself in the hands of wide boy NZX share dealers is not the long term answer to growth and preserving independence. The dairy cockies have shown far more sense than meat industry traders who shove their product and margin straight into the hands of foriegn owned traders and lose all ability to influence the final market price to consumers. NZ meat producers are price takers, NZ dairy are price makers.

I write as someone whose family arrived in NZ generations ago and built wealth from dairy farming only to see it pissed away once the farm land was sold and funds invested in NZ financial instruments.

The model that Fonterra should follow will be arrived at over a long period by necessity and should ensure that a transition to exchange tradeable shares does not result in a long term loss of producer control. Whatever the ideology says.




Dork of the Week

And he's one of ours.

Paul Hutchison believes the person who dobbed him in to police for reading while driving did the right thing. Photo / Supplied

If he was any good he wouldn't have to practice his speech. He would just speak.







Adolf wonders where he used to practice at being a doctor.

Bon voyage......

...and God speed to the guys from the NZ SAS who have been sent back to Afghanistan as part of a multinational force.

Of course Goff, Locke, and the other other handwringers, aren't happy to see them go.
This from Goff; "I think a growing number of people in New Zealand and elsewhere in the world are concerned that we would be sending our people to die for a regime that we don't believe is an effective governor of Afghanistan."
Locke chimes in with;
"The election had been "obviously fraudulent" and questioned why the SAS should be risking their lives to support it.

"The American-led war is destabilising the country and causing many civilian casualties," he said.

"It's crazy to send the SAS just as Western public opinion is turning against the war and most commentators describe it as unwinnable."

While it's plainly obvious that the current regime is nowhere near satisfactory, I can see that with the application of appropriate pressure, persuasion, and incentives, something better will emerge over the long term. In calling for a pullout of the SAS and similar forces, are Goff and Locke doing nothing nothing more than providing tacit support for the entity that will then usurp Kasai's government? See below for details.




G

Monday, September 21, 2009

NZ's First Spiritual Business Adviser

Here's one Sideswipe missed.

It's in today's Herald business page.

"The biggest single issue in New Zealand's productivity is the failure to get smart independent advice, says Don Jaine, head of management consultancy Seqel. Many boards are full of accountants and lawyers who are not fit for the job, he argues. It is often not until death, illness or out of loneliness that business owners start looking for external help, he says."

Adolf wonders if Jesus Christ pays the bills for his clients' advice.

Paula Bennett, Call Your Office

Look at what the Herald nearly forgot to tell you.

Progressive enterprises are to phase out their Woolworths and Foodtown branded stores over the next five years, at a cost of one billion dollars.

http://www.progressive.co.nz/media/624067/countdown%20newtown%20-%20sml_400x181.jpg


Well, ho hum you might think, as did Adolf. But because I'm bored I read all the way down to the end of the article and bugger me dead, right at the very end, tacked on as an afterthought, was this gem.

"Through its investment, Progressive would create 2000 to 3000 permanent new jobs. It employed more than 18,000 people now."

Would anyone hazard a guess at the headline if the report had read:-

"Through its investment, Progressive would cut 2000 to 3000 permanent jobs. It employed more than 18,000 people now."

My goodness, what are the lefties going to do about this? An evil money grubbing multinational Australian based company investing a billion dollars in NZ to create THREE THOUSAND NEW JOBS?

Great political statesmen of our time

Is there any better indicator of the growing popularity of ignorance, superstition and just plain stupidity in NZ than this freshly-minted tradition of burning down houses in which people have been murdered?

Actually, yes there is a better indicator: the shoulder-shrugging equanimity with which the general population seems now to react to the crime of arson.

And there is an even better indicator: the attitude of Christchurch's mayor to the attempted arson of one of his ratepayer's properties. When you read Bob Parker's pronouncement on this crime, you could be forgiven for not realising the house involved was semi-detached, and that in the other half of the house live a family unconnected with the murders, who've been driven from their home by the threat of the arson that was eventually carried out. Bob's reaction to this?

"I think, if we're honest, right across the community there was a sense it would happen," Parker told The Press yesterday.

"One positive thing is that that memorial to murder most foul has been erased.

"I hope this is, perhaps, a turning point.

"We've got to find something positive in all this."

Bizarre. In a week in which the mayor of Wanganui went into full "We shall fight them on the beaches" Winston-Churchill mode over the trivial matter of how to spell Wanganui, Bob Parker thinks the attempted murder of his ratepayers is no big deal. Here's a thought, Bob: if everyone knew this was coming, and a family of your ratepayers were forced to flee their home for their lives because of it, perhaps you could have taken it as a welcome opportunity to put some surveillance in place, catch the oxygen thief in the act and make a big fucking example of him to deter other ignorant, superstitious, waster oxygen thieves from carrying out similar crimes in the future? Just too big an ask, was it?

Gorgeous Put Down

For excellence in writing it is hard to go past the three Republican lawyers who write at Powerline.

Of the New York Times repeater Adam Nagourney, they had this to say:-

"He attended (or maybe sent someone else to attend, it isn't clear) the Values Vote Summit in Washington and offers observations on conservatism, such as an amateur apiarist might try to interpret a beehive."

Sunday, September 20, 2009

And Not Before Time

Adolf knows the rooster behind this particular episode and no doubt commenter pdm will know him.

The gentleman whose gold bracelets and faux bonhomie is exceeded only by his ability to bullshit at last has been brought to book. He was one of many life brokers who saw an opportunity to recycle their clients' funds by directing them into the lucrative property investment market where potential commissions vastly exceeded those to be derived by leaving them in their relatively safe conservative managed funds, for which they had already been paid generous commissions. Most of them became key supporters of BlueChip.

It remains to be seen whether he can stump up with the $250k.

Adolf would love to be a fly on the wall at the meeting with the bank manager to discuss his loan application.

The Adolfian Maxim

Whale oil has put up a post entitled "The Whaleoil Maxim."

Here the Adolfian maxim

http://www.paladinarmory.com/Photos%20for%20PA%20website/vickers%20MKI.jpg

Complaint No 14

Open Letter to the Disability and Health Commissioner

Attention:

Rae Lamb
Deputy Health and Disability Commissioner, Complaints Resolution

Good morning Ms Lamb

I refer to your earlier correspondence in which you advise:-

"However, our focus is on whether there is potential risk to patients, or issues relating to the standard of care. "

Accordingly, I wish to lodge a formal complaint over the current state of affairs viz a viz blood testing services in the regions covered by the Auckland, Waitemata and Manukau District Health Boards.

There are reports that an orchestrated campaign of industrial sabotage against the current supplier Labtests is being waged by DML and certain general practitioners. It is obvious to a dispassionate observer that such a campaign is damaging the service itself and already has put in jeopardy the safety of patients. It seems to me it will be only a matter of time before there is a death which may be attributed directly to this alleged sabotage.

Would you kindly investigate and report on the following specific allegations.

  1. Since the changeover, a number of general practitioners have marked ALL their sample requests as 'urgent,' thereby flooding the system and causing considerable delay in provision of test results.
  2. A number of general practitioners have failed to include the Labtests identifying codes on request forms, leading to inevitable delays in and misdirection of test results.
  3. A number of general practitioners have actively encouraged their patients to lay complaints against Labtests.
  4. A number of general practitioners have permitted DML staff to subject patients to a barrage of anti-Labtests propaganda during the weeks leading up to the changeover of providers. This has been my personal experience.
Would you agree that if such an alleged campaign is being carried out, that it would potentially jeopardise public safety and is unacceptable?

I'd be obliged if you would advise as follows:-
  1. The total number of sample requests processed within the bounds of the three DHBs during the five weeks following change over and during the same period last year.
  2. The number of requests carrying incorrect NHI numbers or doctor identifiers during that period and the same period last year.
  3. The number of requests marked 'urgent' during that period and the same period last year.
  4. The identity of any General Practices where the number of urgent requests has substantially increased compared with the previous year - say by 20% or more.
  5. The identity of any General Practices producing above average numbers of requests carrying incorrect numbers or identifiers.
Declaration:

Adolf Fiinkesein is a blogger pseudonym. The writer has no personal, business or financial connection with the medical/health industry or anyone in it, with the exception of his personal GP. He will identify himself in person to the Commissioner if requested, subject to the Commissioner's prior written agreement of confidentiality.

Yours faithfully

Adolf Fiinkensein

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Blood Money

The hapless and inept Heath Commissioner will live to regret his immortal words 'thick and fast' describing the arrival of nine genuine complaints over five weeks.

Adolf's email has been receiving evidence of a grand medical conspiracy 'thick and fast,' as more people make plain their disgust at the vicious pursuit by Auckland doctors of blood money.

Read the e-mail below from CityMed to its patients and you will see how a major city practice actually built and staffed its very own blood sucking depot and thus tied itself inextricably to the misfortunes of DML. The doctors' big mistake was assuming DML would not lose the contract. They made a seriously BAD commercial decision and now they are squealing.

"...which is why we set up Citymed with an integrated health care facility with a lab......"

See also, how it is desperately attempting to manipulate its patients by encouraging them, nay, begging them, to complain about the service received from the successful tenderer.

"We are distressed Auckland DHBs decision to change laboratory providers has caused disintegration........."

You bet it has caused disintegration - of CityMed's income stream derived from blood money.

And here's the punchline.

"We think it is important that the DHBs hear from you if you strike any problems or have any concerns....... with labtests" (Adolf's italics)

Notice Dr Paul Ockleford, a clinical director of DML, is on the recommended e-mail list given to patients.

Labtests' lawyers will have some sport with the clever dunces from CityMed, methinks.

The e-mail is a pdf file so here it is retyped, exactly as it was written (by an illiterate sub-educated employee whose abandonment of paragraphs and use of mangled syntax is exceeded only by Fairfact Media):-

Dear *******

Changes to Laboratory testing from August 24th.

Funded laboratory testing for all specimens in the Auckland region (except cervical smears) will now be done by Labtests and not Diagnostic Medlab. This was a decision made by the 3 Auckland District Health Boards. It is our belief this decision was made solely on the basis of costs with no concern given to service. We also believe their decision will result in a shift of costs to you. Labtests have chosen to set up on level 2, at 280 Queen St which is about a 10 - 15 minute walk from here. Diagnostic Medlab will still operate from their premises in CityMed but will only do unfunded tests such as those required for insurance and immigration purposes. When we order tests, we do so because it will help us make decisions with you about your medical care. We have always endeavoured to make doing tests as easy as possible for you which is why we set up CityMed as an Integrated Healthcare Facility with a lab,xray, pharmacy etc. We are very distressed that the Auckland DHBs' decision to change laboratory providers has caused disintegration. We think it is important that the DHBs hear from you if you strike any problems resulting from their decision or have concerns.

Please copy us and other interested parties on the following e-mail addresses.

gkingston@citymed.co.nz ; info@labtests.co.nz ; pao@dml.co.nz ; tony.ryall@parliament.gove.nz

Your Team at Citymed

And now, here's the memo, redrafted by Adolf:

Dear Revenue Item

Changes to Laboratory testing from August 24th.

Funded laboratory testing for all specimens in the Auckland region (except cervical smears) will now be done by Labtests and not Diagnostic Medlab. This was a decision made by the 3 Auckland District Health Boards after DML and it's people failed to offer a competitive tender.

It is our belief this decision was made solely on the basis of costs with no concern given to service. We believe also, their decision will result in a shift of costs to you but we're not going to tell you how. Labtests have chosen to set up on level 2, at 280 Queen St which is about a 10 - 15 minute walk from here. That's good for you because the new location will be no further from your office than was ours.

Diagnostic Medlab will still operate from their premises in CityMed but will only do unfunded tests such as those required for insurance and immigration purposes.

When we order tests, we do so because (a) we make heaps of money from them and (b) they will help us make decisions with you about your medical care. When we set up CityMed as an Integrated Healthcare Facility with a lab,xray, pharmacy etc, we did so to lock in the lucrative income stream derived from medical testing . We are very distressed therefore, that the Auckland DHBs' decision to change laboratory providers has caused the disintegration of this most profitable part of our business.

We think it is important that the DHBs hear from you if you strike any problems resulting from their decision or have concerns.
Please be aware, however that in the event Labtests takes legal action against CityMed, DML or the DHBs, this memo will ensure your complaint will result in you being embroiled in any court action which may result.

Please copy us and other interested parties on the following e-mail addresses.

gkingston@citymed.co.nz ; info@labtests.co.nz ; pao@dml.co.nz ; tony.ryall@parliament.gove.nz

Your Team at CityMed

Friday, September 18, 2009

The year 2050

What will you be doing in the year 2050? Probably, if you're like me at my current age, you'll be doing crosswords, playing lawn bowls and getting around using either a zimmerframe or a motorised buggy.

What will life in NZ be like for your kids?
The debt to GDP ratio is likely to balloon out to well over 200 per cent of GDP by 2050, and that's using assumptions for productivity, credit ratings and interest rates based on recent experience. A debt level that high would of course force our credit rating lower and our interest rates up.

A 300 per cent debt to GDP ratio is possible. This is obviously unsustainable with the current policies.

Those 20-30 year olds graduating into the workforce now can look forward to working much longer than their parents and paying much higher taxes than their parents. That's unless their parents choose now to increase the pensionable age, reduce the value of the pension from its current 66 per cent of median wages, start rationing healthcare and save a lot more for their retirement.

Why aren't our political leaders, especially our PM, planning for this with policies put in place now that will ensure our kids in 2050 can afford healthcare; will have an adequate retirement income; and will have the quality of life that their paid taxes over forty years demand?

When will they stop tinkering at the edges and cut to the core?

We badly need politicians in parliament who don't give a stuff about being their long term. We need a core of about 10-12, enough to ensure a majority in Cabinet, who will enact massive structural reform in tax, health, education and superannuation and then leave without a care in the world about being re-elected.

Otherwise the rich will get richer and the poor will get poorer up until 2050 and then we'll have a crisis on our hands. The great shame then will be that people like me (in a retirement village somewhere) will get on talkback and tell the hosts it was all predicted 30 years ago but no one did anything about it. That will be a travesty.

First Blood To Adolf

Update: Adolf's spies tell him one of country's leading and respected journalists went to the doctor recently and was sent off for blood tests. Before leaving the doctor's rooms he/she was handed a form with instructions on making formal complaints about Labtests.

"But I haven't been there yet. I have nothing to complain about."

"You will" was the startling reply. Unbelievable!!!

What a disgraceful performance by our medical profession who treat their patients as pawns in a political and commercial battle between two Australian corporations. DML are desperately attempting to blacken Labtests' reputation in New Zealand in order to hinder their chances of winning lucrative contracts in Australia.

That's what this is all about.

I hope Labtests' lawyers are studying the law which makes it a criminal offence to interfere with another party's contractual rights. DML might find they need deep pockets and so might Mr Hooton.


Adolf went for a fasting blood test this morning. He waited until the normal start time for DML (0800) and looked up the Labtest location on their website. Thank goodness he did because nobody at his medical practice had bothered to tell him blood tests were no longer available at the GP's premises.

Now you know why the doctors are up in arms. For twenty years they've been creaming fees from DML. All the DML sites in my neck of the woods are in GP's premises.

Well, guess what? Brilliant service.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/images/300/blood_tests.jpg

Labtests open for business an hour before DML did. 0700. Now I'll be able to drop in on my way past during the early 7,000 metre route march. Heaps of parking because, Labtests took Adolf's advice some months ago and located their bloodsucking site at a supermarket car park.

Today the total elapsed time from arrival to departure was twenty-one minutes. So it turns out all the propaganda put up by DML and their venal doctor friends has turned out to be bullshit. We are seeing a change in service delivery to a far more cost efficient model - with NO DISCERNIBLE DIMINUTION IN SERVICE.

In passing, Adolf can recall more than one occasion over the last ten years or so where insurance blood test results have been lost or misdirected. They were simply repeated without any fuss.

The lass who punctured Adolf's arm used to work for DML. Sour grapes was the phrase she used. Apparently when she moved over she was told she was a traitor. What a disgusting corporate culture.

So to summarise:

There have been thirteen complaints in all. Of these, four were related to patient waiting times. Of the remaining nine, seven look suspiciously like plants by doctors closely associated with DML. MacDoctor points out how easy it is to sabotage the system by failing to put the right numbers on the test request form.

Adolf eagerly awaits the outcome of the Health Commissioner's investigation of these complaints and that of Labtests itself. Both enquiries should focus closely on the activities of four prominent doctors.

It is extraordinary that so much heat has been generated by so few complaints. Testament to what you can do with some careful manipulation of lazy and incompetent media, a little bit of quiet sabotage and a skillful PR company.

A STUPID DECISION

It is not of my nature to criticise command decisions of the service chiefs but today I make an exception.

The sending home from Afghanistan the three soldiers who chalked a message on a 2,ooolb bomb and attached a drinks sticker to it is a sad one made by a PC cowered hierarchy from the safety of their desks back in Wellington.

They need reminding that loyalty goes two ways ... up and down ... and there is no sign of the 'down' bit there.

Ok, the world has moved on since the writer took the 'shilling' but some things don't change and I suggest the military will reap what they sow. Like it or not they are breeding the initiative and individualism out of today's soldiers to the point they will think twice before they fart and three times before they shoot.

The only people breaking out the champagne today are the Keith Locke's of this world in celebration of another wound inflicted on military morale.

And it was a self inflicted wound by commanders that should have known better.


Taking it personally

I've read with interests the posts by Adolf alleging a dirty tricks campaign by Diagnostic Medlabs against new testing firm Labtests.

I went to Diagnostic Medlabs website
, and was surprised to see that their slogan is:

"We take it personally"

You don't say.

Diagnostic Medlabs, and their parent company know they won't get their old contract back. But they can throw up enough bad press on Labtests and their parent company to hurt their chances with other contracts around Australasia.

But then again, if the dirty tricks campaign is properly proved, it may well be the unravelling of DML and Sonic Healthcare for good.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Now TheTruth Comes Out

There is some serious dirty work going down among the blood sucking community in Auckland. It appears DML faked the complaints to the Health Commissioner.

This morning Adolf asked some questions and the answers are coming 'thick and fast' to use the immortal words of the thick as pig shit Health Commissioner.

Earlier today there was an e-mail from a person who verified that at least two of the complaints came from relatives of the doctors concerned and a few minutes ago came the killer punch.


"Yes, at least 3 complaints to the Commissioner were made by a DML employee's wife. This person is currently commenting on the Herald site as ** (***** *****).
Another 4 complaints have been made by the Drs at * ***** ****. These Drs, one being *** ****** were being paid a considerable sum of money to collect blood on site. It must be cutting deep into the pockets!
So, we have 7 of the complaints being severely suspect."

Mr Ryall, it's time you got into this lot, boots and all. Labtests are being screwed by a duplicitous and lying bunch of losers at DML, aided and abetted by a compliant and lazy NZ Herald and a clever PR man. You need to carpet the CEOs of the three Auckland DHBs, rip the shit out of your idiot Health Commissioner and be ready for some very very big damages suits from Labtests.

If a dumb old blogger like me can see thought the tawdry charade, where the hell has all your army of officials been?

Come on man, time to get off your arse.



Brownlee Does Something Extremely Intelligent

Adolf happened to watch part of Question Time today. There was a priceless moment when Gerry Brownlee simply ignored a question from Metiria Turei. The house went wild.

Eventually, Lockwood Smith slapped the greenies and Labour dunces down and sent them back to reflect on the wisdom of actually reading Speakers' rulings.

Go watch it at the Herald website.

To use her own words, it was 'pure gold.'

Private Schools For Dumbarses?

Nowhere here can I see any indication that pupils wishing to apply for this remarkably generous gesture from ACT will need first to demonstrate that they can at least read, write and count.

It would appear an illiterate dumbarse thirteen year old from Len Brown country (the home of all illiterate dumbarses) could go into the ballot and win $75,000 of my money for private school fees.

All he has to do is prove that his parents are no hopers and he's a shoe in.

What will the poor unsuspecting staff of the flash private schools do with a thirteen year old who can't read, write or count but knows how to say Tangata Whenua and Rangatiratanga?

You'd think Audrey Young might have had enough brains to ask such an obvious question.

No special Auckland Council seats for Asians

Labour's Raymond Hup has drafted an amendment to create a special Asian board for the new Auckland Council.

I'm sure the Chinese, Korean, Indian and other Asian ethnic groups will be less than impressed that they are second class citizens in the eyes of Labour.

Apparently, in Labour's eyes, Maori deserve special council seats. But Asians should only get roles on an advisory board.

Labour shouldn't count on Asian voters support for some time yet.

Dear Mr Ryall

Something smells very fishy in Auckland.

There are some unanswered questions I'd like you to answer, if you don't mind.
  • What vested interest do the doctors leading the charge against Labtests have?
  • Why have Labtests been subjected to the wrath of the DHB's when there have been only thirteen complaints received by the Health Commissioner?
  • How many similar complaints were received during the same period last year?
  • How many of the thirteen complaints relate to service provided by DML before the changeover? (I've seen reports there is at least one.)
  • How many of the complaints refer to waiting times? (I note the reduced number of blood sucking stations were specified by the DHBs so it seems unfair to blame Labtests for the resultant delays)
  • How many of the thirteen complaints were made by DML staff or their family members?
  • Over what period were these complaints received?
  • What percentage of total blood suckings do these non waiting time complaints represent? One in a thousand? One in ten thousand? One in one hundred thousand?
  • Why, two weeks after the changeover, do I still see DML signs dotting the countryside?
Please treat this open letter as an Official Information request.

Regards

Adolf

New Speak

For those of you not up with the new lexicon, here's a few extracts:

Polluter; A business that exceeds it free allocation of mythical carbon emissions.

Basher, and / or Beater; A parent that physically disciplines their children.

Opposition Party; Labour and the greens for the foreseeable future

G

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Excellence in economic management - a case study

Public to pay tab for polluters.

Introduce an ETS, and socialise the resulting losses to the tune of $400 mil pa. Muggins the taxpayer will pick up the tab. Not a bad start, but that's not all. George Darroch writes in a comment over at the Dim Post:

The real kicker is the 100% subsidy we are paying farmers until 2015, and the 90% subsidy we are paying them after that. At current prices and emissions levels (ie. a conservative estimate for 2015) that works out to over $820 million per year.


I think it's worth pointing out here that Michael Cullen at least had a rail network to show for the billion of our cash that he handed over. What's John Key going to have to show for the billion per annum of our dosh that he's planning to biff at this scam? A fine suit of new clothes that's invisible to the stupid, perhaps?

Qarooked Qarase Exposed


It was Adolf who slipped to Whaleoil the remarkable account of Fijian corruption, murder, bribery, prostitution, vote rigging and blackmail orchestrated by deposed PM Qarase and his cronies. A story which could have come straight out of the New York Mafia of the thirties. It's a one meg pdf.

(Detractors will point to the checkered history of the author who is a wealthy crook himself. They need to be reminded that it needs a crook to blow the whistle on other crooks. Such is the history of the US Mafia and its dismembering at the hands of the authorities.)

Whaleoil has produced an excellent summary of a document which makes for riveting reading - all two hours of it.

Of particular interest is the way in which the corrupt administration:-

  • put up the dim witted Qarase as a front man while the clever, scheming murderous Navi Naisori called the shots in the background.
  • bought off the Methodist Church which then, to its eternal shame, directed its illiterate members from the pulpit to vote for Qarase's party;
  • bought off the votes of semi educated Fijians by delivering to their villages hundreds of tractors and outboard motors on condition the villagers were instructed to vote for Qarase's party;
  • corrupted the police force to the degree that police officers removed the seals from ballot boxes in ten marginal seats and stuffed them with bogus votes for Qarase's party;
  • Lined their own pockets with millions of dollars, squirrelled away in Australia,New Zealand and Pakistan. Adolf calculates that when all the corruption in 2006 is added up, it is likely these guys skimmed close to 10% of GDP. A massive $160 million.

Helen Clark and Winston Peters assisted the criminals by sending their biggest drongo, Booboo Hobbs, up there to loudly declare the election fair and above board.

For the first time, one can see the insidious influence of Australia at work. Backing up and covertly assisting a corrupt regime because it 'was easily controlled and would do Australia's bidding.' Interestingly, there was no mention of any New Zealand involvement in this dirty work.

The most extraordinary revelation of all however, is the casual ease with which murder was planned as a last resort if bribery and blackmail did not bring the right people 'on side.'

This story needs to be publicised loud and clear throughout New Zealand until Messrs Key and McCully realise the futility of their slavish adherence to the failed policy of the Clark/Cullen regime and its blind MFAT bureaucrats.

http://www.islandsbusiness.com/images/Alibrarypix/Fijipix/bainimarama/bainimaramanz.gif

Commodore Bainimarama needs to tell the world some of the lurid detail of what Qarase and his vassal Council of Chiefs were up to and the world might just start to listen. So far logic has not worked so now perhaps it's time to focus on the salacious sleaze, dirt and dishonesty which was Qarase and his illegal, crooked, unconstitutional and abjectly corrupt SDL government.