Southerner taking Labour caucus to court


The Southland Times editorial commends Basil Walker  of Queenstown who has been granted a High Court hearing on September 22 against the entire Labour caucus.

 His beef with them is the apparent lack of scientific evidence supporting the Government’s move to enact the emissions trading scheme.

He sees the proposed legislation as ill-founded and is determined to prevent it being made law before the general election this year. The Government is trying to force expensive legislation on the country and someone has to stand up and say there is no evidence to support it, he says.

Much of his argument is based on the work of two men: former Thatcher adviser Lord Monkton and scientist David Evans.

Lord Monkton picks something like 35 significant holes in the global warming debate raised by Al Gore’s movie An Inconvenient Truth. Some of these have been supported by a High Court judge in the United Kingdom.

Dr Evans developed the carbon accounting model that measures Australia’s compliance with the Kyoto Protocol.

“When I started that job in 1999 the evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming seemed pretty good,” he said in a paper this year. “The evidence was not conclusive, but why wait until we were certain when it appeared we needed to act quickly?” Since then new evidence had seriously weakened the case and by 2007 it was “pretty conclusive” carbon played only a minor role and was not the main cause of recent global warming.

That led Dr Evans to change his opinion, adding that the lack of public debate about the causes of global warming meant people were not aware of some basic facts: wThe greenhouse signature — which would prove the greenhouse effect — was missing.

  • There was no evidence carbon emissions caused significant global warming.
  • Satellite data showed the warming trend ended in 2001 and the world was cooling.
  • Ice core data showed global temperatures rose around 800 years before the accompanying rise in atmospheric carbon.

This created a greater urgency than ever to get answers, he said.

That’s a compelling argument for Mr Walker. He doesn’t know the answers, he says, but neither has the Government supplied any solid evidence to prove the emissions scheme is needed.

Our Queenstown battler is going to struggle to reach his goal on this one, but at least he’s fighting. How many of us can honestly say that?

I don’t know whether or not the world is warming and whether or not people are causing it. But I am certain that Labour’s proposed Emissions Trading Scheme will not help the environment and will do great harm to the economy.

The Hive  reckons that Labour has the numbers to pass the ETS and Keeping Stock  notes this shows labour hasn’t learned from the mistake of rushing through the Electoral Finance Act and wonders what deals have been done to get the legislation through so the legal action is timely.

Regardless of the merits of his case, if it delays the passing of the ETS until after the election when the whole matter can be given the proper consideration it needs, Mr Walker will have done us all a favour.

Good on ya mate 🙂

National List


I’ll leave it to others to comment on the National Party list because I was one of the committee which did the rankings and our deliberations are confidential.

If yesterday’s poll  where National had 54% was replicated on Election Day we’d have 70 MPs.

At the last election we got 38% support and 48 MPs. Polls would make it likely we’ll improve on that although realism suggests it won’t be as good as 54%.

Party President Judy Kirk’s media release says:

National’s list promotes strength and diversity


The National Party’s 2008 list promotes strength and diversity, says Judy Kirk, National Party President.


Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga (Maungakiekie) has been ranked at number 35, Hekia Parata (Mana) at 36, Melissa Lee (list) at number 37, Kanwal Bakshi (Manukau East) at 38 and Paul Quinn (Hutt South) at number 48.


“The diversity and individual strengths of the candidates is outstanding. It is a list that truly blends experience with new talent.”


The Party has 17 women in the top 60 and all National’s returning MPs have been ranked on the list in the top 50.


“We’ve had a strong caucus over the last parliamentary term, all of whom have worked very hard. By placing them all in the top 50 we are presenting a united and experienced team who are now able to get on with job of campaigning hard for the party vote.”


Youth is represented through Aaron Gilmore (Christchurch East) and Nikki Kaye (Auckland Central) ranked at 56 and 57 respectively.


Provincial New Zealand is also well represented with new talent. Simon Bridges (Tauranga) is ranked at number 51, Amy Adams (Selwyn) 52, Louise Upston (Taupo) 53, Todd McClay (Rotorua) at 54 and Tim Macindoe (Hamilton West) at 55. All are expected to campaign strongly to win their seats.

National’s Campaign Chair Steven Joyce (list) is the highest ranked new candidate, at number 16 on the list. 


Judy Kirk says this is the strongest list the National Party has put together for some time.


“The Party is very proud to be able to put forward such a talented team of people who are ready to serve their country and help build a stronger future for all New Zealanders.”


The National Party List is:






  1. John Key


2.     Hon Bill English


3.    Gerry Brownlee


4      Simon Power


5      Hon Dr Nick Smith


6       Hon Tony Ryall

Bay of Plenty

7       Judith Collins


8       Hon Maurice Williamson


9       David Carter


10     Anne Tolley

East Coast

11     Hon Murray McCully

East Coast Bays

12     Dr Hon Lockwood Smith


13     Dr Wayne Mapp

North Shore

14     Chris Finlayson


15     Tim Groser

New Lynn

16      Steven Joyce


17      Hon Georgina Te Heuheu


18      Nathan Guy


19      Lindsay Tisch


20      Pansy Wong


21      John Carter


22      Phil Heatley


23     Dr Paul Hutchison


24     Shane Ardern

Taranaki – King Country

25      Dr Richard Worth


26      Hon Tau Henare

Te Atatu

27      Sandra Goudie


28      Eric Roy


29     Dr Jonathan Coleman


30     Kate Wilkinson


31     Chris Tremain


32     Chester Burrows


33     Craig Foss


34     Allan Peachey


35     Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga


36      Hekia Parata


37      Melissa Lee


38      Kanwal Bakshi

Manukau East

39    Jo Goodhew


40     Jacqui Dean


41     Paula Bennett


42    Chris Auchinvole

West Coast Tasman

43    Nicky Wagner

Christchurch Central

44   David Bennett

Hamilton East

45    Dr Jackie Blue

Mt Roskill

46    Katrina Shanks


47    Colin King


48    Paul Quinn

Hutt South

49    Michael Woodhouse

Dunedin North

50    John  Hayes


51    Simon Bridges


52    Amy Adams


53    Louise Upston


54    Todd McClay


55    Tim Macindoe

Hamilton West

56    Aaron Gilmore

Christchurch East

57    Nikki Kaye

Auckland Central

58   Dr Cam Calder


59   Dr Conway Powell

Dunedin South

60   Stephen Franks

Wellington Central

61   Marc Alexander


62   Malcolm Plimmer

Palmerston North

63   Mita Harris


64   Terry Heffernan

Port Hills

65   Ravi Musuku

Mt Albert

66 Jonathan Young

New Plymouth

67 Richard Whiteside


68 Paul O’Brien


69 Youngshin Watkins


70 Hamuera Mitchell


71    Viv Gurrey


72    Dugald McLean


73   Simon O’Connor


E- day November 8th?


The Herald wonders if the election will be on November 8 .

Remember, remember the 8th of November – at least if rumours from the Beehive are to be believed.

With less than three months to the last possible election day, November 15, that’s when sources are predicting the country will be heading to the polls.

Auckland University political scientist Dr Joe Atkinson expected the Government to set a date shortly and said the election would be left “until the last possible moment”.

“The polls aren’t very good at the moment. The longer Labour can have to criticise National policies the better. That clearly favours the Government leaving the election late.”

Atkinson said polls were notoriously unreliable this far out from an election and New Zealand was a “volatile” electorate.

There aren’t many Saturday’s left before the last possible date for the election which is November 15th. That’s the day after Canterbury Aniversary Day and the extra work involved in special votes generally persuades government’s against holding elections on long weekends.

There is now only one weekend left in September if we’re to get a month’s notice, then the next three weekends fall in school holidays and that too would mean more special votes October 18 is a possibility and that’s John Key’s pick, but that in itself is probably enough to make Helen Clark pick any other date.

The following weekend is Labour Weekend which is another to be avoided and that just leaves November 1or 8.

So which will it be? Only the desperate and dateless one knows and she’s not telling us yet.

Sunday social


Several blogs have Friday free-for-alls which has prompted me to have a Sunday social where you are welcome to talk about the week that was, the one that’s coming and/or the weekend you’re having.

I’m just about to fly home from Wellington where I’ve been for the National Party list ranking meeting – results will be announced later this morning.

We had dinner at a wonderful Italian cafe  last night. I’m a bit vague about it’s name and location – it might have been called Cafe Italiano and was in or near Cuba Street. I am in no doubt about its quality though – delicious pasta, wine, desert and terrific service from Italian waiters.

Super Saturday was indeed super – our best ever day  at the Olympics and the medal count is now two gold, a silver and a bronze.

This might help TV ratings because deeply shallow people like me take only a passing interest in the games until we start winning.

I fell asleep part way through the rugby and won’t divulge the score in case you missed the game to and want to watch it without knowing the result.

The six Australian climbers have been rescued from Mt Cook.

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