Bring in the AG

December 14, 2013

Fran O’Sullivan is calling for the Auditor General to open a wider inquiry into Len Brown’s abuse of his position.

If he had any skerrick of honour left, Len Brown would by now have tendered his resignation as mayor to the people of Auckland.

It is absolutely clear that Brown has obtained multiple private benefits by virtue of his position as Mayor of Auckland.

It’s now time for Auditor-General Lyn Provost to open up a much wider inquiry to satisfy Aucklanders – and New Zealanders at large – just where Brown’s abuse of his position stopped.

Brown is hopelessly compromised by the Ernst & Young (EY) report, finally released after lengthy “negotiations” between the mayor’s office and Auckland Council chief executive Doug McKay on just what would be made public from the review into the possible use of council resources during the mayor’s two-year affair with Bevan Chuang.  . .

Brown has clearly flouted Auckland Council disclosure guidelines and general standards. This is symptomatic of a politician who believes he is above the rules. The fact that he was a “no show” at yesterday’s press conference indicates Brown has no answers outside the carefully crafted but ridiculous spin that his bevy of well-paid mayoral office press people have been churning out in recent days to try to deflect attention from the damaging findings in the review. . . .

This isn’t just about Auckland.

The rest of the country might love to hate our biggest city but we understand its importance to the rest of the country.

A mayor whose mind – and morals – are elsewhere is not giving the job the concentration and dedication it requires.

This is not a man citizens can look up to. He is not a role model for children. His standards are not those of the leader the city deserves.

His infidelity is a matter for him and his wife. His acceptance of gifts he didn’t declare and failure to reimburse the extensive use of his work phone for private calls and texts, and other matters the Ernst & Young report didn’t cover, are public concerns.

New Zealand’s reputation for lack of corruption relies on proper investigation of any misuse of public resources and the Auditor General is the one who should do that.


9/10

December 14, 2013

9/10 in the Herald’s politics quiz (though question 9 repeats the answers to question 8, but I did know the name of the sportsman).


Saturday soapbox

December 14, 2013

Saturday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation. You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, to muse or amuse.

I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death. – Nelson Mandela.


December 14 in history

December 14, 2013

557 – Constantinople was severely damaged by an earthquake.

835 – Sweet Dew Incident: Emperor Wenzong of the Tang Dynasty conspired to kill the powerful eunuchs of the Tang court, but the plot is foiled.

1287 St. Lucia’s flood: The Zuider Zee sea wall in the Netherlands collapsed, killing more than 50,000 people.

1503 Nostradamus, French astrologer, was born (d. 1566).

1542 Princess Mary Stuart became Queen Mary I of Scotland.

1751 The Theresian Military Academy was founded as the first Military Academy in the world.

1782  The Montgolfier brothers’ first balloon lifts on its first test flight.

1843 The first Auckland A&P Show was held.

First Auckland A and P Show

1895  King George VI was born (d. 1952).

1896 The Glasgow Underground Railway was opened by the Glasgow District Subway Company.

1900  Max Planck presented a theoretical derivation of his black-body radiation law.

1902 The Commercial Pacific Cable Company laid the first Pacific telegraph cable, from Ocean Beach, San Francisco to Honolulu, Hawaii.

1903 The Wright Brothers made their first attempt to fly with the Wright Flyer at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

1911  Roald Amundsen‘s team, Olav Bjaaland, Helmer Hanssen, Sverre Hassel, and Oscar Wisting and Amundsen, became the first to reach the South Pole.

1918 Friedrich Karl von Hessen, a German prince elected by the Parliament of Finland to become King Väinö I, renounces the Finnish throne.

1922 Don Hewitt, American creator of 60 Minutes, was born (d. 2009).

1932  Charlie Rich, American musician, was born (d. 1995).

1946 Patty Duke, American actress, was born.

1948  Kim Beazley, Australian politician, was born.

1949 Cliff Williams, English bassist (AC/DC), was born.

1951 – Lindsay Perigo, New Zealand broadcaster, first leader of Libertarianz Party, was born.

1958  The 3rd Soviet Antarctic Expedition became the first expedition to reach The Pole of Relative Inaccessibility in the Antarctic.

1958   Scottish singer-songwriter Mike Scott, (The Waterboys), was born.

1958 Spider Stacy, English musician (The Pogues), was born.

1960 – Ian Meckiff of Australia was run out by the West Indies, causing the first Tied Test in the history of cricket.

1962  NASA‘s Mariner 2 became the first spacecraft to fly by Venus.

1963 – Baldwin Hills Reservoir wall burst, killing five people and damaging hundreds of homes in Los Angeles.

1964  Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States – The United States Supreme Court rules that the U.S. Congress can use its Commerce Clause power to fight discrimination.

1972 Apollo programme: Eugene Cernan was the last person to walk on the moon, after he and Harrison Schmitt completed the third and final Extra-vehicular activity (EVA) of Apollo 17. This was the last manned mission to the moon of the 20th century.

1981  Israel‘s Knesset passes The Golan Heights Law, extending Israeli law to the area of the Golan Heights.

1994 Construction began on the Three Gorges Dam in the Yangtze River.

2004 The Millau viaduct, the highest bridge in the world, near Millau, France was officially opened.

2008 President George W. Bush made his fourth and final (planned) trip to Iraq as president and almost got struck by two shoes thrown at him by Iraqi journalist Muntadhar al-Zaidi during a farewell conference in Baghdad.

2012 – 28 people, including the gunman, were killed in a mass shooting in Sandy Hook village, Newtown, Connecticut.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.


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