by Andrew Geddis

John Roughan's column on why paying "voluntary" school fees is a good thing confuses me. I think that's because it is very confusing.

Tim already has posted his response to John Roughan's column on Labour's policy to allow schools to replace "voluntary" school fees with a $100-per-student payment.

People are starting to demand someone's - anyone's! - head over the Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail diplomatic immunity escapade. What's the rush?, I say.

Everyone just needs to calm down a bit about the whole Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail saga. Because some people who ought to know better, as well as some people who never will, are starting to make some pretty silly statements about the matter.

Jock Anderson still just can't get over the fact that "leftie protestors" are allowed to burn flags as a form of protest. And it's all because of those meddling judges ... .

Having arrived back in the country, I note there's been a fair bit going on while I was away that I could profitably comment on. Campaign funding matters seem to have become unnaturally prominent. MFAT officials are letting criminals flee back home without their Minister knowing anything about it.

Donghua Liu's alleged donations to Labour need more scrutiny. But the Police won't be the ones to do it.

The Herald on Sunday's "big reveal" about Donghua Liu's claimed $100,000 purchase back in 2007 of a bottle of wine signed by Helen Clark is forcing me to interrupt a very pleasant stay in Newcastle to make some comments.

Having slept on the Banks decision, here's some slightly more ordered thoughts on the matter.

Before I run to catch a plane, I thought I'd post a few more reactions to Banks' trial and the outcome. Boy, did I pick a bad time to decide to fly!

John Banks has been found guilty ... just as I confidently said would not happen.

I'm presently in Changi Airport, en route to Norway. But I'm taking the opportunity to make a very quick comment on the guilty verdict in John Banks' case.

This verdict proves I don't know much about much, and you should never believe what you read on the interweb. And that is all.

David Farrar thinks that Labour is bad for not doing what National has not done as a result of the Electoral Commission's report into MMP, and Labour should not do what David thinks National should have done as a result of their election victory in 2008.

Over on Kiwiblog, David Farrar is having conniptions about David Cunliffe's promise to repeal the "coat tails" rule in MMP that allows electorate MPs to bring party list members into Parliament, as well as to lower the party vote threshold to 4%.

John Banks' political epitaph lies in the hands of a High Court judge. Will it be "John Banks, retired as MP in September", or "John Banks, kicked out of Parliament in June"?

Now that the evidence has been given and the closing arguments made, John Banks' fate lies in the hand of a High Court judge.

If Laila Harre is going to lead the Internet Party, what does that mean? Good? Bad? Happy? Sad?

The NBR's scoop (paywall) that Laila Harre will tomorrow be announced as leader of the Internet Party (and thus will be #2 on the Internet-MANA Party list) has been up for over an hour now, and

The MANA Movement and the Internet Party have discovered they both have a lot in common. Each very much wants to get as many of its MPs into Parliament as it can.

If at the end of last year you had gone around telling people that Hone Harawira's MANA Movement was going to join forces with a political party founded by Kim Dotcom and devoted to the cause of internet freedoms, you'd have been viewed with a certain degree of scepticism.