Saturday, July 30, 2005

Holmes last night

I had the opportunity to debate Young National President Jamie Simpson on Holmes last night.

We mainly covered the student loans announcement and Brash's flip-flopping over Iraq. It was a quick, ram your points in as forcefully as possible five minute discussion, so we didn't get into anything too indepth! Anyway I felt it went reasonably well, and Jamie resorted to mumbling something about Labour sending SAS troops to Iraq at the close, which is completely untrue of course!

The crew were very friendly, as was Paul who had some interesting views on the state of the National Party campaign. He was baffled for instance that Gerry Brownlee is so invisible given that he is one of the very few genuine heavy hitters that National have on their front bench. I suppose the strategy has been to put Brash and Key up front as a "leadership team", but I suspect that with things unravelling a bit now, we may see some of the more experienced hands come to the fore some more.


Anonymous said...

In fairness I think Jamie was referring to troops to Iraq and the SAS redeployment to Afghanistan.

spooks said...

Just a reminder that this week the Labour Deputy, Michael Cullen called for "less spin and more focus on the facts in the lead up to the election."

Anonymous said...

Whatever the sort of troop and the place they went, Jamie was outgunned....

Oliver said...

Good stuff Michael!

Insolent Prick said...

Actually, Michael, how do you know SAS troops haven't been sent to Iraq? Do you have a security classification that firstly gives you access to this information, and secondly, permits you to report on this information?

SAS movements are classified, Michael. So it's quite feasible that they are in Iraq, and you would not know any better.

Cheezy said...

Well, as long as those terrorists themselves don't find out, then they won't start planting bombs down Viaduct Harbour, like they might have done if, under Don's orders, we'd gone marching blithely into the 'Coalition of Willing'.

So: Let's hope that those terrorists can't tell the difference between an Australian and a Nu Zild accent, yeah?

Too Right said...

Cheezy - how do you explain the bombings in Egypt? As you know Mubarak was a staunch opponent of the Iraq invasion.

You guys on the Left don't let the facts get in the way of a good story. The Islamofascists are against our western way of life - it has nothing to do with what Don may or may not have done/do. Appeasement is certainly no solution.

Cheezy said...

Goodness me, I'm not proposing appeasement... just not participating in a lie-based oil-grab that has killed tens of thousands and, despite your little Egyptian example, has undoubtedly stirred up the violence that we are currently seeing. As Gwynne Dyer recently wrote:

"no other non-Muslim nation except Israel was a target for Islamist terrorist attacks until after the invasion of Iraq in March 2003. And the attacks since then have been aimed at the citizens of countries that were complicit in that invasion: Londoners, not Parisians; Spaniards, not Germans; Australians holidaying in Bali, not Japanese holidaying in Malaysia."

It's not appeasement to think that stirring up a hornet's nest of hate and resentment - when there was no actual threat emanating from the region (OK, there is now, I'll give you that!) - is not a particularly good idea...

As someone now living in London (i.e. where the actions of the government has put the lives of myself and my friends at greater risk) your potshots at the Labour government's policy on Iraq come across as rather churlish and complacent. It's easy to be bullish when the bombs aren't going off around you, I'm sure...

But we don't expect gratitude from you Nats - maybe just a little humility and silent 'thanks'...

Anonymous said...

hear, hear Cheezy...

Too Right said...

Cheezy - as I said earlier you won't let the facts get in the way of a good story.

You have been suckered by the Islamo-apologists - the reality is islamic fundamentalists have been attacking western interests full on for 10 years. This is a war buddy - you gotta believe it.

Let's consider the facts.
You set the date as March 2003 - now let me see; You quote Dyer (writes in the Guardian I think?)
"no other non-Muslim nation except Israel was a target for Islamist terrorist attacks until after the invasion of Iraq in March 2003"

Well sadly for Mr Dyer he is wrong, and you have perpetuated the untruth.

The following is the Honour Roll for the bombers:
USA 9/11 2001
USS Cole 199?
World Trade Centre NYC 199?
Bali (technically not Muslim) 2002 - a year prior to Australia being in Iraq.

Need I go on?

Gwynne Dyer is too economical with the truth for his profession.

Unless and until the pestilence that is Islamofascism is sorted out root and branch it will continue to harm innocent people. This problem needs to be confronted by Muslims themselves - policticians should give them all the support they need to SORT IT OUT, not just give them support.

Insolent Prick said...

Not to mention Russia.

And France has been plagued by Islamist terrorist activity for years.

Germany's been subjected to terrorism since 1972. Remember Munich, anyone?

Anonymous said...

yes, what's fascinating is that when Reagan bombed Libya in 1986, a leader of a Mormon sect at Auckland University and future Act candidate tipped that this action 'would put an end to terrorism'!!...yes, well...

...the solution is terrorism is hardly ever military....other political options have to be presented.

What did Hussein's Iraq have to do with 9/11?
Not a lot, it seems.

Is the new Iraq a viable state?
Jury out, to say the very least.

To what extent did 9/11 have its source in the Bush foreign policy before it?
Quite a lot.

What help has the invasion of Iraq been in defeating terrorism?
None at all.

Has it in fact been counter-productive in terms of discouraging terrorism?

Is New Zealand safer as a result of not taking part in the invasion?
Yes - terrorists are not dumb, they are political. They have taken note of who invaded and who did not.

Is current American foreign policy grounded in any understanding of what causes terrorism and what is causing explicitly this terrorism?
Maybe - and this is being generous.

Or is current American foreign policy got little to do with defeating terrorism really, and so wilfully ignoring any understanding it has access to?
Quite possibly.

Too Right said...


Just guessing - your change of the point of attack to America indicates you have conceded there are many examples of islamic terrorist incidents prior to the invasion of Iraq outside of Israel. 9/11 was a followup to the not completed bombing in 1995 of the WTC. Clinton's era sorry. The bombings in Africa of the US embassy's were on Clinton's watch. Ya see ya can't just blame this on the Bushies...

Anonymous said...

the Bushies are not responsible for the whole historic legacy of American foreign policy, that's right, but they somewhat hamfistedly aggravated things with their pre-Sept. 11 2001 tone ...

Cheezy said...

Gosh. Is anyone seriously claiming that NZ is not safer because of not joining the Coalition of the Willing? I mean, seriously... (outside of the scope of this tit-for-tat, right v left, my-dads-bigger-than-your-dad kinda debate).

C'mon lads. Breathe through your noses and think about it.

You fellaz are obviously adherents to Dubya's amazingly insightful and perceptive explanation for the terrorists' recent behaviour. To wit: "They hate our freedoms". Yip, that's the reason, right? Nothing to do with Palestine, Iraq, extreme wealth inequalities etc, etc...

(Woah! Don't give up your day job, Chomsky, there's a new political guru in town!)

Please don't (deliberately or otherwise) mistake my explanation of what the terrorists are doing, for justification. There is no justification, but there's plenty of explanation. It just doesn't suit certain people's political agendas to mention it.

Don Brash is in a complete mess on this issue. And it's funny watching his squirming evasions.

PPS: "This is a war buddy - you gotta believe it." Woah, that sounds exciting! Just like the old Commando comics, yeah?! So when can we expect to see you enlisting for the good fight, Too Right? Or are you going to stay tucked-up & safe-and-sound in secure little NZ - either blissfully ignorant or wilfully ungrateful at only being so safe because of your present government's actions?

michael wood said...

Too Right, IP and others here rightly point out the varied sources of international terorism.

However, my original comment was about Iraq, which the USA invaded to track down weapons of mass destruc... oh... ummm....

The point I made on the programme was simply that Labour had made a principled stance against that war, and that we had (excuse the pun) stuck to our guns on the matter. Contrastingly, Brash has waxed, waned, and flip-flopped on the issue. His position has changed more times than he has had corned beef for dinner. Does he support President Bush, think the matter irrelevant, or feel like a born-again pacifist? Who knows?

For a man who wants to be Prime Minister, and be in a position to make decisions about sending our young people to potentially die in foreign wars, that is a disgrace.

spooks said...

More lies. Brash has not flip-flopped.

When has he ever once departed from the position that there will be no policy change without an explicit election mandate or a referendum.

Doesn't matter how many times you repeat a lie, it still does not make it true.

And I haven't changed from my position that if you have to lie to win, what is the point? If rugby players had to cheat to win, what would be the point? Or is that another example of the difference between our generations? We "older-move-over" people thought cheating and lying was bad.

spooks said...

Sorry wrong topic. Us oldies, you know, bloody dementia.

Anonymous said...

of interest to this debate - NZH article on American public opinion re. American foreign policy.
In short - they're worried.

Have I done this right?

spooks said...

Link worked nicely thanks.

I'd still rather be America's friend than their enemy.

And, in the unlikelihood of our exerting any influence on Americans, is is far more likely to be as their friend, than as their enemy.

Anonymous said...

we are officially their friend...I think we are not officially their 'ally'.
Just right.

spooks said...

I didn't realise you were so liberal.

Liberal interpretation of the word "friend" that is.

michael wood said...

It's certainly an interesting topic this one. I think that foreign policy may have a significant bearing on the outcome of this election, which is quite unique in our recent electoral history. Labour's FP stance has been consistent and principled and I think that people from across the spectrum tend to respect that.

spooks said...

That's what's called a Maharyism in the public service these days. Fifty-three words to say exactly nothing.

Anonymous said...

And now for National's defence policy:


Zero words to describe zero policy.

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