All posts by davo36

Awesome Documentary

Just watched this, and I think it’s one of the best documentaries I’ve ever seen.

It’s abut a dutch designer who wants to create a mobile phone that is created using fair labour and sustainable environmental practices.

For me, one of the most important parts was when the main guy who set up and ran this company, basically hit a wall and had to seek medical help.

This is actually very common for CEOs in startup organisations, but we hardly hear anything about it.  The loneliness and stress you have when you are driving a business, doing everything from top to bottom is really really underappreciated.  Some people can do it, but many can’t.

You basically just burn out.  And I’m saying this because of course, I’ve experienced this myself.

It was also interesting to hear how when you create a business, it becomes something you can’t stop.  You have customers who want products and services, you have contracts with employees and suppliers and all sorts of others, that you can’t just end.  You can’t just stand up one day, say “I don’t want to do this anymore” and walk out.

Anyway, it’s interesting, enjoy.

You’re a Total Loser!

These kinds of stories crop up quite frequently:  Link
 

‘I made millions from my lounge’

 

Is the headline on the front page of the Herald.  Which makes you click on it…

And then once you click on it, you get this headline:

Founder of cosmetic brand ZOEVA turned her eBay store into a multi-million dollar venture

 

Which is of course, less click-baity, but still drags you in…

But what we never hear about is the millions of others who have tried something very similar and failed i.e. made no money and probably lost a bit.
 
Closer to home on programmes such as Country Calendar, we only hear about farmers who make lots of money, whilst restoring their wetlands, home-schooling their 6 kids and putting on BBQs for the locals.  Not to mention developing an award winning garden, having their 3 generations of family over (who of course farmed the land before they did) and also having the local school kids over for day trips.
 
We don’t hear about the ones who bought herds and expanded their dairy farms just before the milk price crash and they then went out into the middle of a field and blew their brains out. Which happens quite often, but as I said, we just don’t hear about it.
 
And why is this important? Because these success stories tend to make us feel like failures. If we only have a normal job, or a small business that doesn’t make much money or perhaps we took a risk with something but lost out, or we’re up to our eyeballs in debt, then we look at this lady who seemingly started up a webiste and then started raking in the money.
 
Of course it’s much harder than that.  But it’s presented in these news stories like a really easy thing to do.   They don’t mention the thousands of hours of work put in, and of course the essential ingredient, a huge dollop of luck!

And the inference is that if we haven’t or can’t do the same thing, then were a collossal loser.

We also see this kind of thing in various other areas like: People who have lost a lot of weight, people who are very good looking, pictures of ultra expensive houses (cars and every other material item) and so on.

And so maybe it’s a reminder not to compare ourselves with others.  But it’s damned hard not to do that.  And the journalists and retailers know this.  In fact our whole economy is based on it.

Mike McDonald Gets 4 Years

So it wasn’t 6 years as previously indicated to me, it is in fact 4 years in jail (Mt Eden Correctional Facility) that he has been sentenced to.

So apparently he will be eligible for parole in 1/3 of that, with time served counting.

Here’s a link to the Herald article about it: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11767588

This is what he did:

McDonald had been a registered tax agent since 2002. Between 2007 and 2013, he failed to pay client tax money to Inland Revenue, and filed about 250 false GST and income tax returns either to get money from IRD or to keep client funds. McDonald also made false entries in one client’s financial statements to conceal his offending.

Mike McDonald May be Getting 6 Years!

Well I spoke to someone today who told me the sentence indication Mike McDonald got was 6 years!  This is much longer than I would have thought.  Good job of course.

We’ll have to wait until December 15th 2016 to find out exactly what the sentence is, but it may well be 6 years with some conditions added like a minimum non-parole period.

So he wont’ be in jail for 6 years – they never serve the full term, but will be for 2 or 3 or so.  Which is still pretty decent.

Mike McDonald Goes to Jail!

Mike McDonald (formerly of McDonald & Co. Accountants) is now in custody. He was due to be sentenced today. But because of various technical issues, this will be delayed until 15th December.
 
But he will be behind bars until at least then, and then hopefully much longer.
 
Been 3 years since this guy got found to be pinching people’s money (mostly not forwarding client’s taxes to the IRD). Over $1 million.
 
So good to see him finally behind bars!  Hopefully he stays there for a good long while.

Mike McDonald Pleads Guilty

The Herald Reports:

Tax agent pleads guilty to keeping client money

A former tax agent who didn’t pay his clients’ tax to the Inland Revenue Department and falsified 250 GST and income tax returns in order to keep client money has pleaded guilty to fraud charges.

In the Manukau District Court last Friday, Michael McDonald pleaded guilty to four charges of theft by a person in a special relationship, 13 charges of dishonestly using a document, and one charge of false accounting, the Serious Fraud Office, which prosecuted the case, said in a statement.

McDonald became a registered tax agent in 2002. Between 2007 and 2013, he took money from clients to pay their taxes but kept it himself, filed 250 false GST and income tax returns either to get money from Inland Revenue or to keep client funds he wasn’t entitled to, and made false entries in one client’s financial statements in an attempt to hide his theft.

Link

I’m actually quite surprised by this.  Michael Robert McDonald (calls himself Mike McDonald, formerly of McDonald & Co. Accountants) has pleaded guilty.

This wanker has ducked and dived the whole time since it became clear he was pinching people’s money.

While I went through the bankruptcy process, he delayed things a lot, told anyone who would listen that I was the bad guy (even making allegations that I followed his wife in my car, harassed his family and so on.  All of which is complete nonsense.)

And now we see he has admitted to being a thief and a liar.  Of over $700,000 from the IRD (i.e. NZ taxpayer), his clients, me and a bunch of other people.

A bit of background around this: The way the system seems to work is that the Justice Dept and others seek to avoid having a trial whenever they can.  I can only assume this is because of the cost, time and hassle (and lack of resources) to do so.

So they give the defendant an indication of what kind of sentence they might receive if they plead guilty.  Hoping that if they plead guilty, they’ll avoid the necessity for a trial.

And I guess to get this deal accepted, they offer a pretty cushy sentence.  With the threat that if they go to trial and the crown wins,  then you get a harsher sentence.

So I’m imagining that his sentence will be quite light, but you never know.

Sentencing is set down for 21st October 2016.

Thought Police Alive and Well

So here’s some turkey calling for people who deny climate change to be criminalised:

Dr Jarrod Gilbert: Why climate denial should be a criminal offence

Dr Jarrod Gilbert is a sociologist at the University of Canterbury and the lead researcher at Independent Research Solutions. He is an award-winning writer who specialises in research with practical applications.

There is no greater crime being perpetuated on future generations than that committed by those who deny climate change. The scientific consensus is so overwhelming that to argue against it is to perpetuate a dangerous fraud. Denial has become a yardstick by which intelligence can be tested. The term climate sceptic is now interchangeable with the term mindless fool.

Link

How many times over the course of history have we seen this sort of behaviour?

Surely it would have been said about the earth being flat, at the centre of the universe, there being plenty more fish in the sea, it’s impossible for man to fly, the sub 4 minute mile will never be run, man could never reach the moon and so on.

People have been tortured to death for not believing in imaginary gods of all kinds, spurned for looking through a telescope and on and on it goes.

But this guy thinks he’s right.  In fact he’s 100% sure he’s right.  So right that everyone who disagrees with him (a sociologist for crying out loud) and some scientists, they should be criminalised.

What? Put in jail maybe? Made to recant their opinions and ideas? All very 14th century if you ask me.

Government reveals conservation project with aim to be predator free by 2050 – National – NZ Herald News

• 25 million native birds are killed by pests a year • $3.3 billion cost to the economy and primary sector a year • $28 million new company to identify large pest control programmes and…

Source: Government reveals conservation project with aim to be predator free by 2050 – National – NZ Herald News

This is an awesome project.  Our man on the moon type of project.  I’m going to be involved in some way..