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2012 cabinet report card

Written By: - Date published: 12:25 pm, January 2nd, 2013 - 17 comments
Categories: national, Politics - Tags:

After Eddie dissed the usual beltway year in review style of column/post I was a little chary about doing this one. And then I realised the good thing about The Standard is we do real world and beltway issues. So here goes my once-over assessment of the 2012 cabinet performance and what it’s likely to mean for the future.

Bill English

Policy: English’s hand’s off approach has been a total mess – high unemployment, low growth, growing debt. The petrol tax stunt at the end of the year to allow him to forecast a token and meaningless “surplus” shows his total lack of vision. However assessment of many political actions can be divided into “stupid” or “evil”. With regard to English’s policies the former analysis is the most charitable – he could simply be too stupid to see he’s trashing the economy (even though it’s his second time around). Those who favour the “evil” analysis may feel inclined to point out that almost every policy he has enacted has involved handing the very wealthy a greater chunk of the ever-diminishing pie. Depending on which goal English is striving for he’s either done very poorly this year, policy-wise, or very well.

Politics: He’s got away with a lot, mostly because the various economic debacles have been isolated political incidents – or rather they haven’t been tied together into a single strong narrative by the opposition. Dumping the petrol tax at the end of the year is a calculated risk – he’ll be hoping National has recouped some political capital by the time the tax kicks in. I think he’s miscalculated.

In terms of internal politics, English’s camp has grown this year but isn’t strong inside Cabinet. Losing Nick Smith was a blow but Smith has used the blue-greens as an organising tool – there are few new MP’s who are not in the English/Smith camp now. Their problem is that, with Power gone, they’ve got no viable candidate. That said, you don’t always need to be the leader to run the caucus.

Gerry Brownlee

Policy: What a disaster. Pretty much everything Brownlee touches turns to sh*t. With regard to his abysmal performance as the Emperor of Christchurch there’s simply not space to highlight even a small percentage of his failure but I think it’s worth pointing out that he’s terrified of the insurance industry as he seems to back them over the people of Christchurch every time.

Politics: Not a good year for Brownlee in that he goes from PR blunder to PR blunder. That said his job seems to be to soak up the political hits before they damage the Prime Minister so perhaps he’s not doing so badly at all. While he holds a fair bit of sway in Cabinet right now I can’t see him sticking around past next term. If he does he’ll need to be moved on or National will start to have the same problems every party does when it lets has-beens run the show.

Steven Joyce

Policy: A couple of years ago I pointed out that Joyce had this weird magic about him in that, although everything he touched turned into fiasco (ranging from the 2005 Exclusive Brethern debacle, to the Roads of National Significance) he still manages to bully his way through. In terms of his policy, MBIE, his biggest accomplishment so far may yet be his undoing…

Politics: Early this year Joyce was quietly positioning himself as the next leader of National – he had his flying monkeys out and about undermining Judith Collins hard out (including feeding the ACC debacle). However he appears to have bitten off more than he can chew with his play to be minister of everything – he’s had to take his eye off the internal politics ball and his leadership stocks have dropped. And, true to form, he seems to think he can bully his way through every one of his portfolios – which one of his little stouches will become his eastern front is yet to be determined. I think he’s in for a very interesting 2013.

Judith Collins

Policy: A trail of destruction. Basically Collins’ M.O. seems to be to make a mess and then leave it to someone else to clean up. I may be wrong but I can’t think of one substantial policy she’s produced since she became a minister (Collins supporters feel free to correct me).

Politics: 2012 was the year Collin’s dropped the “crusher” moniker and decided to rebrand herself as a statesman. This is a work in progress as can be seen by her end of year Bain shenanigans. However she’s been courting the media well and has seen off Joyce well enough that she’s now considered the prime candidate to take over from Key. Her camp has grown somewhat (and there’s a lot of leg-work being done among backers) but the leadership stuff is still very much cold-war at the moment and she’s got a way to go before she’s a shoe-in. It’ll be interesting to watch her next moves in terms of brand development.

Tony Ryall

Policy: I’ve got to admit I haven’t followed health that much this year but it seems Ryall is quietly shifting money away from prevention and into more quantifiable areas. With an aging electorate this might be good politics or it might actually be an appropriate strategy. There’s very little to point either way.

Politics: I’ve been told Ryall does a really good job with his sector relations and it seems to show. People complain about Maryan Street not taking him to task in health but forget that Robertson had the portfolio before her and didn’t make any hits and even Kevin Hague (who knows the sector inside out) isn’t making any ground. As far as I know Ryall is still very much in English’s camp.

Hekia Parata

Policy: There’s already been screeds written on this.

Politics: and this.

Chris Finlayson

Policy: Findlayson has worked hard to fairly settle some significant treaty claims and is clearly seen as a safe pair of hands having held both the Environment and Labour portfolios after Ministers resigned (he’s still got Labour).

Politics: The only time I can think of Findlayson playing dirty politics was during the Hobbit dispute when he released a very select line from Crown Law advice on collective bargaining for contractors (declaring it illegal). Despite repeated OIAs the full advice is still being withheld. It may come out this year.

In terms of his profile, Findlayson is little-known outside of the beltway and I think that’s just the way he likes it, my impression is he’s very much an outsider, even within his own caucus. It will be interesting to see if he keeps the Labour portfolio or if it’s passed on early in the New Year (perhaps to Simon Bridges). Personally I hope he keeps it.

Paula Bennett

Politics: Bennett doesn’t do policy. Every single “policy” move since she became a Minister has been primarily a political move, mostly to provide bene-bashing cover. That said, the attitude at WINZ has hardened as she’s changed the culture but with no Christine Rankin to rely on the job’s not been done as root and branch as it was in the 1990s.

Politics: Paula looks after Paula and has ever since her student politics days. But like so many that run on blind ambition she seems incapable of taking a long-view. I suspect that at some stage she’ll outlive her usefulness and that’ll be it for her. I’ve neither seen or heard anything that suggests she’s got any organised political muscle of her own.

David Carter

Policy: I’m drawing a blank here. A little help?

Politics: Well he’s gonna be the speaker…

Murray McCully

Policy: Gordon Campbell puts it better than I could:

Then there were the McCully reforms at MFAT, which have thrown one of our most competent departments into total disarray in pursuit of illusory cost savings. (Again, if a centre-left government had disabled the foreign affairs arm of government so comprehensively, the wretch responsible would have faced calls of treason, and been drummed out of office months ago.)

Politics: Make no mistake, Phil Goff hasn’t been scoring points off McCully for any other reason than the MFAT ratbags have done his opposition research for him and handed him his lines. It says something about the “Machiavellian genius” of the National Party got his arse handed to him by a bunch of civil servants. Oh well, at least he had the world cup. Time for Murray to get his gold watch I’d say.

Anne Tolley

Policy: A very quiet year for Tolley. Other than capitalising on some of the PR opportunities set-up by the former minister she’s not done much.

Politics: Given Tolley’s lack of PR fiascos since she left Education I think it might be fair to say Parata’s not solely the author of her own demise. That said neither her nor Tolley are much chop really. One would assume she’s in the Collins camp but it probably doesn’t matter one way or another…

Jonathan Coleman

Policy: The cost cutting in defense, particularly the move to sack defense force personal and then hire them back as civilians with lower terms and conditions, puts a lie to the claims National has previously made about supporting the troops. And, although he probably has little influence in the decision making, the myriad of issues surrounding our continued involvement in Afghanistan are his responsibility.

Politics: Another Minister who has had a quiet year. The defense restructuring never really hit the headlines and John Key fronted on Afghanistan.

Tim Groser

Policy: 2012 was the year Tim Groser made us look like dicks at DOHA. I’m reasonably sure he doesn’t agree with his own policy but that’s collective responsibility for you.

Politics: Groser has had nothing but bad PR this year. He was never a personality the NZ public would find that sympathetic but this won’t help. Interestingly Simon Bridges has answered for him quite a few times this year – whether that’s because Groser’s not been around or whether it was because he had difficulty shopping a line he disagreed with? Who knows. Nonetheless Bridges did an excellent job of standing up, running the lines, and then sitting down – he’ll go far.

Phil Heatley

Policy: In energy, Heatley has basically just done what Joyce and Gerry have told him to. Which is probably why all that oil and gas that was going to make us all as rich as teachers never eventuated. In housing Heatley is quietly working through selling houses in good suburbs and claiming more suitable houses are going to be built in more suitable locations but it seems there is very little public information about what’s actually going on.

Politics: Energy has been handled by Joyce. Housing? My impression is that Heatley’s got someone good in his office seeding politics-of-envy stories about beneficiaries living in million dollar state houses (they always seem to come from directed OIAs). Given housing is such a big issue for the opposition, Heatley seems to have had an easy ride.

Kate Wilkinson

Policy: Wilkinson was starting to do some good work in the labour portfolio particularly with regard to health and safety. So much so that many in the unions didn’t want her to stand down after the Pike report was released. In conservation she’s overseen “cost savings” in DoC that are already having negative environmental effects.

Politics: Wilkinson took responsibility for Pike that should have been sheeted home to Gerry Brownlee. It’s no secret that decisions made in the Labour portfolio (and indeed in her conservation portfolio) were driven by Brownlee when he was energy minister. She really does appear to care about conservation but doesn’t appear to be able to advocate for it – I suspect she’s excused quite a lot of bad publicity by a media and a sector that know she has little say in her own portfolio.

Nathan Guy

Policy: Very little has changed in immigration, probably as there’s not much worth changing right now.

Politics: The only significant immigration story of the year was Winston’s “highflyers scandal”. Which was fronted by Key and didn’t really seem to have any legs. Other than that, Guy seems to have been off the radar.

Craig Foss

Policy: I’ve not really paid much attention. Anyone got any ideas?

Politics: N/A

Amy Adams

Policy: Oversaw the demolition of the emissions trading scheme which means we’re going to see vast amounts of wealth transferred from the taxpayer to polluters over the next few years.

Politics: Adams hasn’t done well with environment. To be fair, she followed Nick Smith who was across the portfolio like nobody else in the last couple of decades but she seems to have be caught out several times by things that a more experienced minister would have taken in their stride whether they knew the portfolio well or not.

John Key

Policy: N/A.

Politics: Well, where to start? Key started the year with the tea-tape hangover, then got hit with dot-com, he’s put his foot in his own mouth on several occasions, and is presiding over so many policy failures it is simply astounding he can do so well in the polls.

But he does. I think Key will make a big show of starting this year on the right foot possibly with a cheap but liberal policy such as food in low-decile schools or perhaps something environmental. I also think that the 2014 election campaign will begin this year and that the Nats will start putting the pressure on Labour after February.

And then there’s the reshuffle. That’ll be bad news for Parata but will probably bring Bridges in and Nick Smith back. That’ll appease the gallery as they love having their predictions come true but it won’t make a blind bit of difference to the policy settings or the internal power balance.

What will be interesting to see next year is the relationship between Key and his caucus. Especially if they don’t rally in the polls.

17 comments on “2012 cabinet report card”

  1. Matthew Hooton 1

    Far too generous to Parata.

    • IrishBill 1.1

      Nope. I just think there’s a consensus on how abysmal she’s been that I didn’t feel the need to add anything. I’m also not sure she’s done that much worse than, say, Brownlee.

      • Marty 1.1.1

        How much is Parata, and how much is it a sabotaging department?

        Nevertheless, Key will “promote” her safely into another position.

  2. bad12 2

    Here’s my wild card, Maurice Williamson, yes He of the Hairdo that at times seems to ascend to the heights of the ‘Hairdo from Ohariu’ Dunnes version of dead animals treated badly,

    Befor Carter, Slippery the Prime Minister tried to shoe-horn Williamson into the Speakers Chair, Maurice wouldn’t have a bar of it, which says to me that Maurice thinks He still has places to go in politics and the National Party,

    When the time comes to give Slippery His come-uppance i think it will be the English camp with Maurice as it’s chosen heir apparent that will trounce any leadership amibitions that Collins might be entertaining,

    Williamson has sat as quiet as a mouse as a Minister outside of Cabinet and in doing so hasn’t tarred Himself with the regular s**t-storms of major policy and political machinations that have been regular features of Collins and Joyce’s Ministry’s…

  3. Rhinoviper 3

    National will start to have the same problems every party does when it lets has-beens run the show.

    I can’t think that that wasn’t pointed at Mallard, Goff, King… and their mini-mes like Chippy.

  4. just saying 4

    Astute analysis IB.

  5. xtasy 5

    Good try, Irishbill, I would have recommended a more ruthless and detailed attack assessment in the form of such “cabinet report card”, for sure. You are much too diplomatic and kind, and I feel you missed too much out, that should have been mentioned and put in here!

    Also I would not have spared the Labour Caucus and “shadow cabinet” there, as we have sadly too many under-performers in that lot, to make a difference so far.

    NZ is short of political talent, and it is showing. This is a terrible state of affairs for the future of this country, and TS should really raise this. Many of some contributers and commenters here were at Labour’s last major conference, spoke kindly and enthusiastically about the grass root member commitments, input and resulting changes, so get some more from that level to replace the hangers on that sit on the leather cushioned, green chairs inside the House a.s.a.p., please.

    The opposition needs, talent, fresh blood and a really keen, motivated lot there, that take this rotten government to account, not just with a few questions in question time, but across the whole front of political trench fighting and what else belongs it. 2012 was a real disappointment, apart from the occasional good performance.

    Shearer has one real last chance, get Cunliffe involved and committed again, or you will stuff up something terrible, for all of Labour!

    Get moving, get going, get stuck into it, a real bloody shake-up is overdue in coming weeks, or get real and found a NEW social democratic, left of centre, inclusive, potential party, a.s.a.p., please!!!

    • David H 5.1

      “Shearer has one real last chance, get Cunliffe involved and committed again, or you will stuff up something terrible, for all of Labour!” WRONG!
      Shearer has to resign, the whole Caucus needs to be dumped. Cunliffe needs to lead, and pick a winning team. The time of stuttering and stammering has gone. And now Labour NEEDS a new leader. Someone who can string a sentence together and think on his feet, and not need a week to rehearse a couple of lines!

      • Crimson Nile 5.1.1

        But are we sure that David Cunliffe has a remaining interest in the Leaders position? Think of the day after getting your ‘promotion’ – a poison chalice trying to discipline an unruly caucus full of implacable and generally right wing “ABC’s”. What would make him take up a challenge like that?

  6. Ad 6

    A reshuffle will be too late for them. Their history is fully written and IrishBill’s summary is as much of an epitaph as they need. So if they are on the out, another column could concentrate on the key officials: which ones should stay, which should be asked to resign as soon as the next govt steps in.

    Kibblewhite at DPMC, what of the EPA would you keep, what to do with MBIE and Smol and those massively powered Dep Secs, who at Treasury. Etc.

    With such a disaggregated and corporatised state however, we would need to evaluate the other layers; Landcorp, Solid Energy, the power companies that remain, the CRIs, the Vice Chancellors, the quangos. Boards and CEs to express confidence or not.

    Because you don’t necessarily have to throw the whole structure up in the air to make a leftie government work. But you have to put the fear of God into them.

    It’s pretty clear now Labour will not have a plan for government other than CGT and other basics from last time. So we need to signal that this will be a change government, and that it will be officials and CEOs and Boards who will form those plans.

    It’s not comfortable, because we usually presume the Left can think. Odd that Labours Policy Council appears bereft of leadership or drive now. But the membership can require of caucus a government of powerful change. The rest will be up to the public sector to come up with. It’s a debate we need to start, beyond the political personalities.

    • Tiresias 6.1

      ” It’s a debate we need to start, beyond the political personalities.”

      A debate we need to start?

      Seems to me that activists, party members, concerned members of the public have been pressing the start button now for a couple of years, and all they’re getting is the brief whine and expiring puff of a flat battery.

      • Ad 6.1.1

        True to a degree, and political discourse often channels us to personality cults, but look, even the Constitutional changes were essentially replacements for hard debate about ideals. Can hardly fault the commentators here. We simply need more “what we want” debate.

  7. Treetop 7

    When it comes to housing Heatley is going from bad to worse, his latest excuse for empty HNZ homes is they are an earthquake risk. (Homes in Christchurch yes, else where far and few). A woman on RNZ this morning is unable to sell her home in the Hutt Valley for what it is worth, she said she would not have purchased it five years ago had she known what HNZ would do. A third of the homes in her street have long grass, graffiti on the homes, boarded up windows, planks from fences are been taken to be used as firewood, she described the area as being like a ghetto and that derelict people are being attracted to the area.

    The mayor from the area is going to clean up the graffiti and threatened to send HNZ the bill. The 0800 number to ring HNZ is nothing but a run around when it comes to the woman’s complaints. HNZ have increased patrols and think that long lawns are being cut. To be boarding up windows says it all.

    I vaguely heard King say later in the day that were the properties occupied the situation would be different.

    HNZ is the sickest I have ever known it to be. It is now common to hear that when a person has to leave a HNZ property due to the property being sold or unable to be lived in, there is not another HNZ property which is suitable.

    Less and less are being housed when the demand is that more and more need affordable housing.

  8. Treetop 8

    With the fiscal cliff in the US being avoided by using a band aid solution for the next two months, another recession cannot be ruled out. Every minister (in the above) has now got a ready excuse for tightening the screws even more, which they were going to do anyway.

    One thing about English is that he has a clear manifesto as he beats the drum regarding selling the power companies and being in surplus by mid 2015 even though he is dreaming.

    Is it better to have a manifesto which is a pipe dream than not to have one at all?

  9. exkiwiforces 9

    Jonathan Coleman is setting up the NZDF for a major policy fail/fall in the 5yrs and some of the Chickens are starting to come home such as:
    1. Pilot and Aircrew Standards are dropping, (I blame Labour for that one)
    2. The Middle management (Officer Corp- Captain to Major and SNCO’s for example my uncle who is SNCO in RNZAF of 32 plus yrs of loyal service to his country is leaving as he has a guts full of the cut backs)of all 3 Services are leaving which puts more pressure on those left to get the job and doing more with less is going to get people killed this has already happen
    3. The Navy’s Fleet Tanker is needs to replace in the next 3 yrs, The Seaspites are about to fallout of the sky and the ANZAC weapon and combat system upgrade will be cheapest bidder not the needs of the Navy or the needs of the other 2 services/country in other words a half arse job.
    4. The Army can’t/ won’t be able to do an INTERFET mission ie Chap7, Chap6 and Chap5 peacekeeping missions without destroying the defence budget and any other tasking that Navy or Airforce may doing at the time remember the summer 99-00 anyone.
    5. The C-130’s may have a new cockpit, but they still have same maintenance problems as you would’ve for a 50 yr old airfames , yes folks they entered service in the 1965/66 and how they haven’t fallen out of the sky yet god only knows (I refuse to fly in them).
    Sorry for the long rant, but as someone who has been inside NZDF and now working alongside the NZDF in a foreign defence force, the future of the NZDF is not good whoever is in power after the next election.
    It may pay for some of you to check out defencetalk.com or wings over new zealand forum site for further information on the NZDF at a grass root view.

  10. Rogue Trooper 10

    dearie me, i people think i’m a prophet of doom :(
    back to the joinery for this cabinet, feed it through a band saw

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    I think I'll start at the end. Andrew ended his recent post like this:...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • More than 20 jobs saved at Auckland faculty of education
    The union and TEU members at the University of Auckland have managed to reduce proposed compulsory job cuts at the faculty of education from 35 down to just two. Local TEU organiser Enzo Giordani said feisty staff with a staunch...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Gordon Campbell on the tokenism of New Zealand‘s role against Islamic Sta...
    Was John Key born lucky or what? Political performance tends to be judged on three things – the unemployment rate, the petrol price at the pump, and the market value of your house. This year, Key was lucky enough to...
    Gordon Campbell | 22-10
  • MIT chaos following job cut announcement
    Chaos reigns at MIT following last week’s announcement that the polytechnic will cut 68 full time equivalent jobs, according to local TEU organiser Chan Dixon. Over a thousand people have signed a petition opposing job cuts at the polytechnic. Staff are...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Auckland staff call for Living Wage
    The Living Wage Network held a rally and barbecue this week calling on the University of Auckland to become first New Zealand’s Living Wage university, by paying all staff, both directly employed and contracted staff, a living wage of $18.80...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Otago debates one off lump sum
    The University of Otago has not offered its staff a pay rise on their rates at collective agreement negotiations, opting instead to offer a one-off lump sum of $1000, which will not go ‘on the rates’. TEU members at the...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Speaker: David Fisher: The OIA arms race
    Good afternoon everyone. I am David Fisher, a reporter with the New Zealand Herald. I have worked as a journalist for 25 years, mainly in New Zealand but across a number of other countries.I think there's some value before I...
    Public Address | 22-10
  • Employment law first act of new government
    As the prime minister promised, his government has rushed to push through its Employment Relations Amendment Bill as one of its very first actions this week. The bill, which union members and workers have actively opposed for the last year,...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • 7 inspiring stories of communities taking action for climate
    Stories of communities taking action for the climate and refusing to accept the plans of polluting fossil fuel companies are happening more and more. Here are just a few inspiring climate acts of courage taken by doctors, villagers, students, farmers,...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-10
  • Blowin’ in the wind
    Wind power has a pivotal role to play in the world's energy supply over the next few years. By providing huge amounts of clean, affordable power, it can buy us time in the fight against global warming while revolutions in...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-10
  • Wanted: more fertiliser and horse manure
    Equality enriches the soil, just like manure, but a lot less stinky (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think about why they’re On The Left, and what the next three years holds for the left, the...
    On the Left | 22-10
  • PM gets it right about Auckland, mostly
    Prime Minister John Key is dead right when he said: First home buyers in Auckland might have to consider an apartment in order to get onto the property ladder, Prime Minister John Key says. After all, the locational efficiencies of...
    Transport Blog | 22-10
  • Questions and Answers – October 23
    Press Release – Office of the Clerk Economic ProgrammePolicies 1. JAMI-LEE ROSS (NationalBotany) to the Minister of Finance : What measures is the Government taking to help the New Zealand economy become more productive and competitive?QUESTIONS TO MINISTERS Economic Programme—Policies...
    Its our future | 22-10
  • John Key’s Multiple Identities
    Question to the Prime MinisterRussel Norman: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he txted him?Prime Minister: None in my capacity as Prime Minister.John Key...
    Local Bodies | 22-10
  • Where is the Middle?
    When Labour decides who will be the next leader, it is of interest to all of us involved in politics. After all the person chosen could be New Zealand's next Prime Minister. So the debate on the nature of the...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • Labour Needs A Civil Union With The Greens
    Much has been written about where Labour needs to go from here. One issue which doesn’t seem to have generated much interest is what do they do with the Greens?...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Lau...
    The People's Flag Is ... Mint Green? Grant Robertson and Jacinda Ardern (whom Twitter immediately dubbed Gracinda) pose in Mint Green for one of the glossy women's magazines. In a non-revolutionary era, superficial is about as deep as it gets. BIKERS?...
    Bowalley Road | 22-10
  • Auckland’s disturbing panopticon
    Earlier in the month, we learned that Auckland was planning to install a creepy panopticon, complete with ANPR and facial recognition, for vague and undefinied purposes. This produced a flurry of OIA requests via FYI, and one of them (for...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • How low can you go? Mining the depths
    The company says there will be economic benefits, which the EEZ Act says the EPA must consider, but even these benefits are in doubt. The royalties while not set will be tiny, the profits will flow offshore, and whatever phosphate...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Government loses the affordable housing race
    Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks he can deliver affordable housing to Cantabrians on his current figures, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Minister’s announcement that the Government will build 237 new homes, most of which will...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Labour’s thoughts with Canadians
    Labour has offered its sympathies to the family and friends of the Canadian soldier who died in what appears to be a premeditated and unprovoked attack while standing at guard at the Ottawa National War Memorial. “Our thoughts are also...
    Labour | 23-10
  • What next for TVNZ? Outsourcing the news?
    Television New Zealand’s decision to outsource Māori and Pacific programming is a real blow to the notion that our state broadcaster is a public broadcaster, says Labour. “CEO Kevin Kenrick has said today that TVNZ has ‘a very long and...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Green Party expresses sympathy for Canadian shooting victims
    The Green Party expressed its solidarity with Canadians and the Canadian Parliament today, offering its sympathy for family and friends of the soldier killed in the attack. "Our thoughts are with all those caught up in the shooting in Canada...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Prime Minister must honour his promise
    It’s time for John Key to honour his promise to the Pike River families, says Labour MP Damien O’Connor.  “International mine experts have confirmed the view of WorkSafe New Zealand and many miners on the West Coast that it is...
    Labour | 22-10
  • EPA finds Shell Oil illegally drilled two wells
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded that Shell Todd Oil Services (STOS) broke the law by drilling two wells without a marine consent off the coast of Taranaki, the Green Party said today. The EPA conducted an inspection of...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    News that Aucklanders overtook Wellingtonians as the biggest train users is further evidence the Government needs to start work on the Auckland City Rail Link now, the Green Party said today.Auckland Transport said today that in the year to September,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Tea breaks gone by lunch time
    Labour is calling for an eleventh hour reprieve to employment law changes which could see thousands of Kiwi workers not covered by collective agreements lose their smoko breaks, its spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“How cynical that on the...
    Labour | 21-10
  • Metiria Turei to lead fight on feeding hungry children
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira.Mrs Turei, who leads the Green Party's work on child poverty, will pick up Mr...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Otago dairy farms fail basics
    I’m really privileged to take on the responsibility of the water portfolio. Eugenie Sage has done excellent work in this area in the last term of parliament and provided a great platform for further work. Last Parliament my bill to...
    Greens | 21-10
  • A mighty totara has fallen across the Tasman
    The New Zealand Labour Party expresses deep sadness at the death of former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, aged 98. “Today a great totara has fallen across the Tasman,” Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says....
    Labour | 21-10
  • Note to National: Must deliver on child poverty
    John Key and his Government will be held to its promise to make child poverty a priority, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “In its priority-setting speech today the Government stated child poverty would be a major focus for...
    Labour | 21-10
  • New Analysis show Government cut tertiary education funding
    New analysis done by the Green Party today shows the Government has made cuts to funding of tertiary education since 2008.Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that between 2009 and 2015 Government funding to Tertiary Institutions dropped by 4...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Students doing it tough as fees rise again
    The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Steven Joyce is shutting a generation...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Key misled New Zealand on Iraq deployment
      John Key was misleading New Zealanders prior to the election when he ruled out New Zealand special forces being deployed to Iraq, says Labour Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff.  “Post-election he has cynically disregarded that by saying that deployment of...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Church congratulated on child poverty stand
    The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.   “I think...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review.  He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban (see further biographical details here). The Review Team...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
  • RECOUNT JUST ONE STEP TO RESTORING CREDIBILITY
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA SEEKS TAI TOKERAU RECOUNT
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA to fight mass privatisation of state housing
    Announcements over the past 12 hours from the Minister responsible for Housing New Zealand, Bill English, and Minister for Social Housing, Paula Bennett, make clear the government’s intention for the mass privatisation of state housing. This comes during the middle...
    Mana | 07-10
  • Journalists have right to protect sources
    Legal authorities must respect the right of journalist Nicky Hager to protect the source of his material for his Dirty Politics book under Section 68 of the Evidence Act, Acting Labour Leader David Parker says. “It is crucial in an...
    Labour | 06-10
  • It shouldn’t take the Army to house the homeless
    National’s move to speed up its state house sell-off shows it is bankrupt of new ideas, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “National has been in office for six years, yet the housing crisis has got worse every month and...
    Labour | 06-10
  • Government must lift social housing supply, not shuffle the deck chairs
    National's decision to shift the state provision of housing to third parties is a smokescreen for the Government decreasing the provision of affordable housing, the Green Party said today."What National should be doing is increasing the supply of both social...
    Greens | 06-10
  • Election 2014 – the final count
    While we have to wait for the final booth level counts we can now see how well we did in the specials and look at electorate level data. First off special votes (and disallowed/recounted votes etc). There was a change...
    Greens | 06-10
  • We need more houses, not Ministers
    The Government’s decision to have three housing Ministers will create a dog’s breakfast of the portfolio and doesn’t bode well for fixing the country’s housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New Zealanders need more houses, not more Ministers....
    Labour | 05-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Discordant Chimes of Freedom: Why Labour has yet to be forgiven.
    WHY DOES THE ELECTORATE routinely punish Labour and the Greens for their alleged “political correctness” but not National? It just doesn’t seem fair. Consider, for example, the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 – the so-called “anti-smacking legislation” –...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Hosking or Henry – Which right wing crypto fascist clown do you want to w...
    So Mediaworks are finally going to make some actual money from their eye watering contract with Paul Henry by launching a new multi-platform Breakfast show over TV, Radio and internet. This is great news for Campbell Live who have dodged...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Families need more money to reduce child poverty
    Prime Minister John Key is mistaken to rule out extending the In Work Tax Credit to all poor children (The Nation 11th Oct) and Child Poverty Action Group challenges government advisors to come up with a more cost effective way...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Don’t shit on my dream
    Once were dreamers. A large man, walks down the road and, even from 200 yards there’s light showing between his big arms and bigger body. It’s as if he’s put tennis balls under his arms. Two parking wardens walk out...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Corruption: Positive developments for NZ but more to be done
    Global anti-corruption group Transparency International today released a report on OECD Anti-Bribery Convention enforcement and called for New Zealand to implement draft legislation to ratify the United Nations Convention against Corruption....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Government to Blame as Much as Council for Marryatt Payout
    The Taxpayers' Union is calling on the Government to fix the employment law regime that has forced Christchurch ratepayers to fork out $800,000 to former Council boss Tony Marryatt....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Unanimously Call for Commissioner to Arm Police Full Time
    In the wake of a series of recent armed offender incidents, delegates to the Police Association Annual Conference today called unanimously on the Commissioner to arm Police full time....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Bank gets behind NZ wildlife icon with sizable donation
    It will be easier than ever this summer for holiday-markers to dip into their pockets to support the yellow-eyed penguin....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • WorkSafe report raises concerns about asbestos
    The union representing construction workers in the Canterbury rebuild is surprised at WorkSafe’s conclusion that no action needs to be taken against EQC and Fletcher EQR over asbestos exposure in Canterbury homes. “This report was an opportunity...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Union accuses SkyCity CEO of misleading public
    Unite Union has accused SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison of misleading the public over the cut in hours for a staff member who raised the issue at the company's AGM....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Last Hurrah on the Taxpayer
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Hone Harawira spent up $54,000 on the taxpayer in his last three months as an MP, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “It is absolutely disgraceful that an MP managed to rack...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Press statement in relation to search of Nicky Hager’s home
    On 2 October 2014, Nicky Hager's home in Wellington was searched by police. Mr Hager asserted that documents kept at his house were protected by privilege, including because they contained information that might identify confidential sources....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • The Sam Simon arrives into Auckland for new campaign
    This morning Sea Shepherd ship, the Sam Simon, arrived into Auckland harbour after its journey from Melbourne. The ship and its 25 crew from around the globe have come to New Zealand to source supplies and prepare for the upcoming...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Low inflation – time for meaningful wage increases
    With inflation low, now is a good time for workers to negotiate for pay increases that outstrip price rises and deliver real increases in wages and salaries. “For too many people, real pay increases have been missing for several years...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Auckland Rates Rises Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland ratepayers will face an average of a 29 percent rates increase, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “These rate rises show that Len Brown's spending is out of control.”...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Protest at New Plymouth Oil and Gas Expo
    About 30 protesters from Climate Justice Taranaki, Frack-free Kapiti, Te Uru Pounamu Action Group, Oil Free Wellington, Frack-free Manawatu and the east coast protested yesterday outside New Plymouth's biennial Oil and Gas Expo at the TSB Stadium....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • FMA warns consumers about cold-calling investment offers
    The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is warning New Zealand consumers and investors to be wary of cold-calls asking them to buy shares or put their money into offshore firms....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Comprehensive plan needed to end child poverty
    Child Poverty Action Group says it is vital the newly re-elected National government takes a planned and comprehensive approach to reducing child poverty in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Metiria Gets Feed the Kids
    Yesterday the Speaker of the House advised that he had accepted my request to transfer my Feed the Kids (Education (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Amendment) Bill to Metiria Turei of the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • DIA undercover investigation leads to jailing
    An undercover Internal Affairs investigation has led to a Hastings man being jailed for three and half years....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • RainbowYOUTH: 25 Years, 25 More
    In 1989, a group of young people in Auckland got together to form a support group for LGBTIQ youth. They called it Auckland Lesbian And Gay Youth (ALGY). After 25 years, several location changes, a name change, a brand reboot...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Outdated Oath shows need for Kiwi Head of State
    MPs are sworn in today and New Zealand Republic has written to MPs asking them to talk about why 121 New Zealanders elected by the people of New Zealand and standing in the New Zealand Parliament swear allegiance to another...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Council shouldn’t revenue grab from windfall valuations
    Auckland Council should state clearly they will not try and capture revenue as a result of the latest valuations and needs reminding that the City’s skyrocketing property values doesn’t change the level or cost of Council’s services, says...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • EPMU endorses Andrew Little for Labour leadership
    The National Executive of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union unanimously endorsed Andrew Little for the role of Labour leader, at a meeting held yesterday. “I have been speaking to our workplace delegates at forums across the country over...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • World Food Day promotes Agroecology not GE technology
    The UN has stated that agroecology is a major solution to feeding the world and caring for the earth....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Labour Names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Contenders for Labour leadership debate for first time
    The contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party debated for the first time on TV One’s Q+A programme today....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • UN Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme
    New Zealand's United Nations Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
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