Wednesday, June 28, 2006

ACT the massive rebuild.

There is about 4,134,200 people living in New Zealand. About 1 million of those people are too young to vote or infirmed, so that leaves us with about 3,100,000 people who are able to vote in NZ.

Lets remember that a lot of people simply don't vote, and I can remember my friend Daniel F King getting into a heated argument with someone when he told them that if they don't vote, they cant complain.... Daniel had a very valid point...

In the last NZ election in 2005, 2,286,190 people voted in the General election which was 80.9 % of the voters out there.

Labour 935,319 41.1%
National 889,813 39.1%
NZ First 130,115 5.7%
Green 120,521 5.3%
United 60,860 2.7%
Maori 48,263 2.1%
ACT 34,469 1.5%
Progressive 26,441 1.2%
other 29,828 1.3%
informal 10,561

Therefore about 500,000- 700,000 people did not vote in the elections in 2005... Why?

ACT lost 5.6% support from the previous election (145,078 votes) and only got 2 MP's in. That is not a good thing... The "Other" Parties nearly got as much support as ACT did. Why? Rodney Hide won Epsom for the first time which was a good thing, but where did 110,000 party voters for ACT go? Did they think that National could get a majority, or did they not like the way the ACT party was leading? If Rodney was so bad then why did they vote him in>?

The answer more than likely has to do with some of these...

1. Other parties have pinched a few of ACT's good deas and managed to publicise them (well) as their own.

2. The big money of 2002 and before possibly dried up.

3. There seemed to be internal arguments going on within ACT from the public's point of view.

4. The President and internal officials must not have been doing the right job.

5. A bit of flip flopping and teething problems were evident from the leadership change.

6. Roger Douglas kept opening his mouth at the most unopportune times.

7. Negative press made the party look like it was going to disappear.

8. Aaron Bhatnagar went to the National Party (I am being a bit funny with that one)

9. Rodney can't do everything himself.... He needs some really good thinktank people and support groups.

10. ACT stands for the Association of Consumers and Taxpayers.. Where on earth did the silly motto the "Liberal Party" come from.

11. ACT is regarded by the public as the Rich persons party. Most NZ'ers are not rich.

12. Fresh and valid policy needed to be put in front of NZ'ers.

13. The message was not getting out.

14. Maybe the message was getting out and people didn't like it?

There are a few ideas there of what may have been the cause for the loss of support for ACT.

Now the NZ public are very aware of Rodney Hide now thanks to Dancing with the Stars... Most of the public seem to like him, and he certainly showed the average voter that he has the balls to do something that scares him... He has tenacity and does get things done.

I would think that now is a great time for ACT to get into the grass roots level and capture support for the party while Rodney is fresh in their minds.

How do they do this?

For one I would suggest getting the ACT website totally redone, making it more patriotic and appealing to the common voter. Mellow out the colors, change the photographs, and get rid of the Liberal blurb. It takes money to do but as the leader of ACT if I had to pay for it myself I would. The website is ghastly. Not a good way of swaying the curious Georges that decided to search ACT over the internet when it was thrust upon them Samba style.

Is the blog (as much as I like it) really a good thing for the Leader of ACT and MP of Epsom to be spending his time on? Maybe he needs to have a guest poster that publishes his diary and blog in a more professional level allowing time to do other things?

Get key people together and make goals for the party. It should be possible to get 15% of the party vote if ACT gets it's A into G. Come up with good new policy and stick to it. Make it known that certain policies that other parties are floating are ACT policies and get the power back.

Recruit some high profile people to commit to running for electorates now. Train these people up in the ACT policy and get the support back. ACT should target at least 3 to 5 swing seats plus Epsom which Rodney should win again if it doesn't look like the party will crumble away, and aim to win them by getting the candidate ready and working them now. It is possible, but the party, leaders and members need to believe it too.

Build a big team have them on the same page and as John Banks once said " Treat every day like you are working your election campaign."

Get the publicity for the right reasons, don't knit pick at things that are more on a personal level. Earn the countries trust, and show the NZ that ACT has the ability and the knowledge to effectively and correctly play a crucial part in the next NZ government.

There is more to say and do, but that is my 2 cents for now. What is your opinion, how does ACT claim back and earn more votes than the 2002 election?

President Bush and PM Koizumi to visit Graceland

The Memphis, Tenn., home of the King of Rock and Roll Elvis Presley will host a summit of sorts Friday when President George W. Bush and Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi travel to Graceland for a personal tour of one of America's wackiest, and some may argue tackiest tourist attractions.

This is the first time a sitting president has visited Graceland..... Koizumi is a good friend of G W Bush, and a massive fan of Elvis. Koizumi even serenaded President Bush with an Elvis song at his last birthday party.

I guess George must have liked the song PM Koizumi sang so much that he is taking him the the home of the King.

Elvis's ex wife Priscilla and daughter Lisa-Marie Presley will be the tour guides for the President and PM this Friday...... I wonder if they will be fed peanut butter and banana sandwiches?

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Bill Clinton explains friendship with G H W Bush

Former President US Bill Clinton told students Monday night that his new relationship with former President George H.W. Bush is an example of how people can overcome differences to do good. These previous Presidents work well together for the good of the country, and it is a pleasant change to see the both of them together in an interview.

"I like working with him," Clinton said to hundreds of students at the World Scholar Athlete Games at the University of Rhode Island, "and I like arguing with him."

While Clinton's main message was to look beyond individual differences in the name of altruism, he added some muted criticisms of the current Bush Administration.

"You have to try to make more partners and fewer terrorists, more friends and fewer enemies," Clinton said.

In response to a student's question, Clinton spoke of mending his differences with the current president's father, a political adversary he defeated in the 1992 presidential election.

President George W. Bush asked Clinton to work with his father to raise aid money after a Tsunami devastated Asia in December 2004. When hurricanes devastated the U.S. Gulf Coast last year, the pair of former presidents worked together again.

Clinton stressed that the two remain very different men.

"He's 80-some years old and he jumps out of airplanes," the 59-year-old said. "I just play golf."

Since their friendship, the two presidents from opposite parties have not changed their political opinions, Clinton said. Instead, the pair have looked beyond their differences to areas where they agree and can help others, an example he hopes other politicians will follow.

"All this bitter partisanship has been poison for this country," he said.

Maybe this is a good lesson for the boys and girls from ACT and National in NZ??? Get along and find good ways to work together to win the next election for the better of NZ.....

Through his friendship with the current president's father, Clinton said his respect for the current president has grown. Bush has a better take on immigration than the more conservative members of his party, Clinton said, and he got Congress to spend millions fighting AIDS.

Still, Clinton noted that he and George W. Bush have "huge differences."

I wonder if Jenny Shipley and Helen Clark ever get together for a game of bridge?

Axl Rose arrested in Sweden

Guns and Roses lead singer Axl Rose was arrested in Stockholm Sweden this morning for allegedly starting an argument with a lady at the Berns Hotel, and being to drunk to speak. He was also accused of biting a security guard in the leg. He has been released and paid a fine and some cash to the security guard, so I guess it is now business as usual.

It is great to see that G'N'R are on a world tour at the moment. The first in quite a while. It is also good that they have not thrown the towel in and cancelled shows randomly, as they have done in the past, causing riots and anarchy.

I am crossing my fingers that the show makes it to Los Angeles..... Last time I saw G'N'R was in Auckland on Axl's 30th birthday. He is now 44.....

Rock on.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Music videos from the 80's

I found this link on Clint Heine's blog. It absolutely rocks. There are links to about 1400 of your favorite music videos from the 80's. First song I played was Flashback Heart attack by EZO. I have been looking for it for years.....

So if you like Autograph, Guns and Roses, Quiet Riot, 2 live crew, Trio, Patrick Hernandez, The Proclaimers or practically anything else you can think of from the 80's.

Link here and enjoy

Cheers Clint.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

PM Tony Blair nearly got egg on his face

British Prime Minister Tony Blair narrowly missed being hit by an egg as he travelled to southwest England to meet crime victims.

Blair, whose Labour Party is sagging badly in public opinion polls, was greeted with jeers from a 60-strong crowd as he arrived at a community centre in Bristol city.

One woman threw an egg at him, but it missed its target and broke over the road instead. Police later confirmed that she had been arrested in connection with the incident.

Blair travelled to the deprived Southend district of Bristol to hear a group of 16 local residents describe how they have been intimidated by local thugs, only to be badly treated when they gave evidence against them in court. Sounds like Tony and his boys need to work harder on crime prevention.

His two-day visit to Bristol came as his government tries to underline its commitment to overhauling the criminal justice system and rebalancing civil liberties in favour of the victims. Well he has had plenty of time to do so.

He is expected to launch a nationwide debate on crime during a keynote speech in the city on Friday.

In May 2004, Blair was hit on the back of the left shoulder when a pair of fathers' rights activists hurled a condom full of purple-dyed flower at him in parliament.

Looks like it is not all good for PM Blair in the public opinion polls..... Is it time for a change in UK?

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Air Force 2

I am now back in LA, and as I was leaving Eagle/Vail airport this morning in Colorado, I noticed USAF 70400 (pictured) and USAF 90402 on the tarmack. 70400 is the plane that Vice President Dick Cheney uses, and as it was at the airport, it confirms that the VP was at the AEI meetings in Beaver Creek. Would be nice to go for a flight in that plane.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Dick Cheney in Beaver Creek

BEAVER CREEK, Colorado. A man was arrested by Secret Service agents when he tried to approach Vice President Dick Cheney in Beaver Creek Village yesterday afternoon, said Secret Service spokesman Eric Zahren.

This explains to me why I saw 2 armor plated Cadillac Limo's when I arrived at the Eagle Vail airport being followed by 2 secret service Surburbans. There was also a C17 Globemaster parked on the tarmack.... There have been military copters flying past the house also....All comes to place now.

Cheney is attending the AEI World Forum conference in the Vail Valley, an unofficial summit, created and hosted by former president Gerald R. Ford. Former world leaders, current government officials, scholars and business leaders from around the world are invited to discuss important global issues, organizers say.

I wonder who is here? HMMM, maybe they will invite me next year.

Friday, June 16, 2006

The worlds fastest Indian

I am up here in Beaver Creek Colorado again overseeing the completion of this magnificent home that Distinctive Holiday Homes owns.
It was just my good luck that the media room was completed today, so I decided to test the system by watching the world fastest Indian.
It is a story about a rather old Kiwi bloke that had a dream of running his home modified Indian motorcycle at the Bonneville salt flats in Utah. He wanted to hit 200mph and everyone said he was an old fool with no chance of making it.
Burt Munro, who is the old Kiwi bloke, is played by Sir Anthony Hopkins, and he does a great job. There has certainly been some great New Zealanders in motorsport. Bruce McLaren, John Britten, Burt Munro, Scott Dixon, and me...HA.
Burt Munro was from Invercargill, and when I met Tim Shadbolt last year at the Tiki lounge in El Sugundo Los Angeles, he said he was up here something to do with an movie about an Indian.... I must say that after watching the movie, I wasn't expecting to see Tim Shadbolt in it, but he plays a great part....Well done Mayor of Invercargill.
I really liked the movie, and it shows that with a bit of Kiwi ingenuity and some tenacity just like Burt Munro, your dreams can be fulfilled....
If you know much about New Zealanders, or if you are from there and have not seen this movie, do so. Get the dvd out and enjoy. I thoroughly recommend it.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Rumor has it in the F1 paddock.

Rumor has it that McLaren F1 driver Juan Pablo Montoya will leave the team at the end of this season. There is no rumor of where he might go. He is a great driver, and I'd like to think that he would retain a drive for 2007.
It also seems that another rumor is that Kimi has signed for Ferrari.... If that is the case then who will be driving with current world Champion Fernando Alonso at Mclaren next year?

George W Bush visits Baghdad

US President George W Bush has paid a surprise visit to the Iraqi capital Baghdad, his first since November 2003 when he also made a surprise visit to Iraq. The Whitehouse wanted to show Iraqi leaders that USA is here to support them.

Iraq's Prime Minister Nouri Maliki was only given a five-minute warning before meeting the guest for talks at the US embassy in the fortified Green Zone.

Iraq's future is in your hands, Mr Bush told the Iraqi prime minister. The President told PM Maliki that he was there to look him in the eye. PM Maliki thanked George for visiting, and they had high level discussions.

#43 is due to leave Iraq in a matter of minutes, as 5 hours is the amount of time that he was planning on visiting. He is currently talking with US troops before leaving.

A good move.

Monday, June 12, 2006

North Korea getting a bit touchy

North Korea's Air Force Command has threatened to "punish" the United States for its spy flights over the communist state, recalling the fate of a US Navy plane it shot down 37 years ago.

In a statement carried by the Korean Central News Agency, the air force said that a US RC-135 reconnaissance plane had made flights over its territorial waters on June 6, 8 and 10. I would have thought that if they could have shot the US Navy plane down then they would have. I wonder what sort of plane the US was using?

Describing the alleged US espionage flights as "openly crying out for a preemptive attack" on the communist state, the command warned of a possible repeat of 1969, when it shot down another US Navy plane, killing all 31 crew.

"The North Korean Air Force seriously warns the US imperialists that it will sternly punish the aggressors if their planes continue illegally intruding into the sky ... on espionage missions," it said. Thing is... does North Korea only know that a plane has overflown them once it has long gone?

"They had better not forget the miserable end EC-121 met in the 1960s."

North Korean fighters shot the reconnaissance plane down off the country's east coast in the Sea of Japan East Sea in April 1969.

Another US-North Korean incident occurred when North Korea fired missiles at an SR-71 spy plane in August 1981. The "Blackbird" jet was undamaged. That is because it was the fastest plane in the world at the time and nothing could catch it. I only wonder what the replacement for the SR-71 is? Is it the SR-75, I guess we will only know when we are told.

North Korea has been sensitive to US spy flights, with its media citing military sources as issuing a monthly report on US aerial espionage. Sunday's statement was rare in that it was issued in the name of the Air Force Command.

North Korea has claimed the United States is preparing to invade the communist country despite repeated US denials. I am not sure that there would be any benefit of invading North Korea, other than freeing the citizens of the country. Diplomacy is going to have to be the way to stare the North Korean government down.

The two sides are locked in a standoff over North Korea's nuclear weapons program.

During six-way talks in September, North Korea agreed in principle to dismantle its weapons program in exchange for diplomatic and economic benefits and security guarantees.

But North Korea has boycotted the talks since November when it said US financial sanctions imposed on Pyongyang over allegations of money laundering were blocking progress.

Pyongyang has said it would return to talks which involve both Koreas, the United States, China, Japan and Russia only after the sanctions are lifted.

Did anyone see Team America World Police?

Democratic Presidential candidate poll

In a straw poll in the State of Iowa, it appears that Democratic Vice Presidential candidate in 2002 John Edwards is the most popular choice for Democratic Presidential candidate in 2008. I rather liked John Edwards, and I think that if the Democrats make it in the next election then he could well make a good President. This is an early poll and the nominations are a while away, but it makes me think that if the lineup was Edwards as President and Hillary as VP, then the GOP best pull John McCain out of the hat with either Rudy as VP of maybe they current Secretary of State Rice?

Time will tell, but it is going to be VERY intersting.

John Edwards on 30%
Hillary Clinton on 26%
John Kerry on 12%
General Wesley Clark is at 2%

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Rodney Hide MP drops out of Dancing with the stars.

Good on Rodney Hide MP for Epsom and ACT Party leader for lasting so long on Dancing with the Stars..... He learnt how to dance from scratch with his attractive dance partner Krystal Stuart and managed to pull through dancing in front of a live audience until last night. I think it was a great thing for him to do, even if it was for that fact that he lost a whole lot of weight and is getting into shape. Time will tell if the poll #'s for ACT increase, but one thing is for sure. More people in NZ are aware of Rodney Hide MP.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Walk the line

I viewed Walk the line last night. It is the movie about Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash that was released in 2005. It stars Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon who both put on a stellar performance. If you like Johnny Cash, and you have not seen the movie, I recommend it.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Greg Johnson "Here comes the caviar" released USA 6/6/2006

Greg Johnson's much acclaimed album "Here comes the caviar" with songs like; It's been so long, Save yourself and Handles of pearl amongst others, has been released today in the USA on the Baria records label.

Greg is currently touring with Ted Brown, Malcolm Cross and Sid Jordan across the USA to enthused crowds. The momentum is building and I expect Here comes the caviar to be a hit record.

If you live in the USA buy the album, it is great. It is available on, and at your local borders. If the album is not in store be sure to ask for it.

Rock on Gregory.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Rodney Hide continues.......

It appears that ex Shortland Street Star Angela Bloomfield and her dancing partner Jonny Williams have been booted off Dancing with the stars last night.

That leaves rookie dancer, leader of ACT and MP for Epsom Rodney Hide and his partner Krystal Stuart still in the game. Having not seen the program, I have been told that while Rodney is doing well, it is reasonably clear that he has room for dancing improvement... although he gets better with every stride. Therefore they must be popular voting with the public as they keep staying on.

Good luck Rodney and Krystal, keep up the good work...... St Johns is a great beneficary of your donation.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Tom Cruse building a house in Coatesville?

Is this true? I was brought up in Coatesville. Interesting if this is true.


Who does this remind you of?

Does this picture remind you of anyone? I have a birthday dress up party to go to tomorrow night, so I wanted to go as one of my favorite Presidents. All I need is the accent now.