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25 years nuke free

Written By: - Date published: 8:56 am, June 10th, 2012 - 46 comments
Categories: activism, defence, Environment, International - Tags:

I have never been prouder of NZ than I was when we went Nuclear Free. We put principle ahead of profit, we stood up to some heavy diplomatic pressure, and we spoke our piece to the world. Lange in the Oxford Union debate – magnificent (a redeeming star amidst all of the other damage that that government wrought).

Hard to believe it was 25 years ago.

Things are looking good for the future too. I don’t think that even the Nats will mess with Nuclear free now – it remains iconic for too many people if the recent (unscientific, right-leaning) Herald poll is anything to go by.

It’s not all roses however, from The Herald on Friday:

Activist takes N-free battle overseas

New Zealand marks 25 years of being legally nuclear-free today – but a Kiwi who has made nuclear disarmament his life’s mission is leaving the country because of a lack of local support.

Tauranga-born Alyn Ware, who set up a global network of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament in 2002, will speak at a concert in Auckland’s Aotea Square tomorrow marking the 25th anniversary of the anti-nuclear law.

But the Wellington office from which he has co-ordinated the global network for 10 years has closed because of cuts to NZ Peace Foundation funding.

Next month, he will take up an offer of office space at the University of Basel in Switzerland, with support from Basel council. “The countries that are picking up the disarmament ball are no longer down here. New Zealand is no longer a big player in this,” he said.

That’s a sad way to mark an important anniversary.

46 comments on “25 years nuke free”

  1. Rupert the Beer 1

    Little worried that 29% said that it should effectively be scraped, while another 15% said it wasn’t important…

    • r0b 1.1

      It’s a Herald poll, with all that implies.

    • Foreign Waka 1.2

      Education is the key, but then again physics prerequisite is the understanding of mathematics. Well, with the national sport of raising a whole generation with no deeper knowledge it should not come as a surprise that in 20 years time all that was fought for will be lost.

  2. Rusty Shackleford 2

    Turning your back on an entire technology, especially one of the safest, “greenest” energy sources in existence, was and is utterly misguided. “Nuclear weapons free”?, sounds pretty good. But, if NZ had started investing in nuclear energy 25 years ago, we would probably have much lower energy prices today.

    Especially if we had invested in thorium. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thorium_fuel_cycle

    • Tiger Mountain 2.1

      Or cars that run on water etc eh Rusty. Current human society can’t even get around to kicking the capitalists arses and feeding everyone 60 years after the foundation of the UN, so certainly shouldn’t be trusted with more nuclear energy just yet.

      Kiwis showed the way all those years ago when cruise missiles and SS20s were deployed by the thousand. House by house, suburb by suburb NZ went nuke free, it was and remains a beautiful thing.
      Hilarious that some whacko US developer is turning ‘retired’ mid west missile silos into apartments that double as self contained shelters for their wealthy owners in the event of societal meltdown.

    • r0b 2.2

      Safest and greenest. Mmmmm. Off course we’d be fine here, because we never have earthquakes, right?

      • Pete 2.2.1

        I used to be marginally in favour of nuclear power. I thought it was a better alternative to coal and the damage done to river systems by dams. New techniques of sequestering waste in glass and, in turn, ceramic vessels looked promising to me. Fukushima ruled that out entirely for me. New Zealand is not stable enough for such a plant and we don’t have the resources to deal with an accident if we have one.

        • Lanthanide 2.2.1.1

          I’m in favour of new nuclear plants, with 100% fail-safe design. Ones that produce less waste or use up existing waste are also a big plus.

          The problem with fukushima is both with the inherently unsafe reactor design and also the corner cutting and fudging that the Japanese companies that ran that plant (and others in the country) got away with for decades.

          Unfortunately due to the public spectacle of the fukushima disaster, there will now be considerably less investment in nuclear energy worldwide, which in turn will mean less investment into safer and better reactor designs.

          • Uturn 2.2.1.1.1

            “the public spectacle”

            I guess I have a couple of choices. 1) cry 2) laugh 3) find new blog to read 4) bash my face repeatedly on the monitor.

    • joe90 2.3

      Yeah Rusty, 25 years later and nuclear power is still a financial nightmare.

      Time is money, they say, and the new nuclear power plant being built by EDF at Flamanville in France is now at least four years behind time and €2.7bn over budget. EDF blamed the delay on two fatal construction accidents and dealing with safety analyses prompted by the Fukushima disaster.

      […]

      The only other new nuclear plant being built in Europe is at Olkiluoto in Finland. Areva, like EDF a state-controlled French company, told me this will be connected to the grid no sooner than 2013 and costs are now estimated at €5.6bn. That is four years late and €2.6bn over budget.

    • Foreign Waka 2.4

      Please, please investigate what you write about. It is not necessary the use but the waste that is the problem with this source of energy. At the moment all the waste is being dumped underground and in the sea. So far no solution has been found for the highly poisonous side product of nuclear plants.
      It is well known in Europe that this will pose one of the biggest problems for the next 100 years as the concrete filled drums used to keep the waste encased and buried will show signs of deterioration. So what then? Seems to me a case of who cares since no money can be made from it.

    • Lanthanide 2.5

      Are you suggesting that NZ is of sufficient size to warrant a nuclear plant? Most of the country is at risk from big earthquakes, which makes it quite problematic.

      Now if you’re suggesting the government could have been ‘investing’ money in nuclear energy companies around the world or our own in NZ, then sure, I could agree with that proposition. But to think that NZ is of the size to make nuclear energy a sensible option, given our vast wealth of renewable sources such as rivers, geothermal hot spots, windy hills and ocean currents (cook straight has some of the strongest in the world) is rather naive.

  3. Pete 3

    Wasn’t there a ministerial portfolio for disarmament? Where did that go?

  4. Foreign Waka 4

    Congrats to NZ for its shining example of banning nuclear material.
    The world over waste is dumped into the sea, buried under the soil and countless accidents have not been reported.
    The latest disaster in Japan just shows how unsafe it is to use nuclear energy in and around the pacific rim plate, despite all the technological advances – and Japan is light-years ahead of NZ.
    Chernobyl still shows its aftermath in miscarriages, malformation, infertility in humans and animals alike. A vast area is uninhabitable for hundreds of years – but of cause this is not worth any headline anymore.
    So again – Great that NZ has stood up and declared itself Nuclear free.

    • Fortran 4.1

      What about the Nuclear material used in our Hospitals.

      It helps save and prolong life.

      • Lanthanide 4.1.1

        Exactly correct. NZ is nuclear reactor/weapon free, not nuclear material free.

      • millsy 4.1.2

        Used in very small amounts, and not that dangerous compared to a nuclear reactor.

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.3

        There’s a bit of a difference between the small amounts of radioactive material used to conduct medical procedures, and the tonnes used and produced by a nuclear powerplant. Or the thousands of tonnes of radioactive fallout from a nuclear explosion.

      • pmofnz 4.1.4

        Or the nuke material in your smoke alarm sensor detectors.

        Unfortunately we’ve just wasted 25 years burying our heads in the sand. Go nuke!

        • bbfloyd 4.1.4.1

          So, because a few grammes here and there of a naturally occurring substance can be used safely justifies creating thousands of tonnes of highly radioactive material that will stay lethally toxic for tens of thousands of years??

          Is it national stupid day or what? does a single proponent of our collective death wish even come close to grasping how long that really is? the idea that this material can lie untouched, and safe for longer than our recorded history to date doesn’t give pause for thought?

          So how much of a guarantee do the future generations have that the location of all of the toxic deposits will be known in say, 300 years? try 700, 1000, 1500 years from now….. because those deposits will still be deadly for much longer than that….

          Making a virtue of stupidity is just that…stupid..

          • RedLogix 4.1.4.1.1

            What’s really interesting is that pmofnz isn’t in the slightest bit fazed by his stupidity… on this or any one of dozens of other topics he’ll be wrong about too.

            Now I’ve no problem with people holding differing opinions. Especially if they can back them up with evidence and a reasoned argument. Even more so if they can change that opinion when it’s shown to be in conflict with reality. Now these are not difficult requirements; the average person who attended school in this country and with a normal range IQ should be able to achieve these things.

            So it’s intriguing to see how so often even this elementary hurdle remains unleapt. It’s not stupidity at work here; at least not in the normal sense we use the word. (Although of course it frequently masquerades as stupid.)

            The problem is that when presented with events or evidence that is in conflict with the inner model a person is using to decode reality… the most common response is to simply filter it out. The conscious brain isn’t even aware this is happening. So when we explain in detail why nuclear power is a BAD idea… people who truly believe it is a GOOD thing simply hear “blah, blah, blah”. Their mind simply cannot register anything BAD about nuclear power because the inner model they are using has no place for the concept.

            Whenever you see someone refusing the engage with facts, or evidence or logic and instead merely repeat unthinking slogans or soundbites you know this is what is going on.

            • pmofnz 4.1.4.1.1.1

              And you wonder why I hear “blah, blah, blah”? Once again the standard response from the left is to instantly play the man.

              • RedLogix

                You are the one who conflated the risk associated with micrograms of isotope in a smoke detector with the thousands of tonnes of high level material in all the nuclear power reactors. And then concluded with the slogan …”Go Nuke”.

                Besides the point I was making is not that you are ‘stupid’ are such… rather it is your brain filtering out information that is incongruent with your inner model of reality.

                If you were engaging with evidence or reason… as distinct from repeating slogans or tired flabby old soundbites … then we would be having a proper discussion. But I can’t do this on my own.

                You have to join in. Unfortunately until you are willing to get past the fear of having your inner assumptions and models challenged that’s not going to happen.

                • pmofnz

                  I notice that none of your commentators who also specified that we are not nuke free, in whatever quantity did not get jumped on as being stupid.

                  I still stand by my original statement of ‘we’ve just wasted 25 years burying our heads in the sand’ and that we should be utilising nuclear for power.

                  • RedLogix

                    “Nuclear free” clearly means the absence of nuclear weapons and power-scale reactors.

                    The presence of isotopes for medical, industrial and sundry other purposes is utterly irrelevant to the discussion. It’s akin to claiming that “there is a beach in my living room” if I found a single grain of sand embedded in the carpet somewhere.

                    Now why was it that you believe nuclear power is a good idea again?

                    • pmofnz

                      Much better now you’ve got away from slagging off the man.

                      As you’ve probably gathered, I happen to strongly disagree with the absence of power-scale reactors. And forever we’ll probably agree to disagree on that matter.

                      I’d also daresay that operators of nuke power stations, have in the wake of incidents such as Fukushima and the Ohio plant, employed the best engineering brains to fix backup cooling systems. Unfortunately for New Zealand, we produce PE teachers in copious quantities, not nuclear engineers.

                      Finally, to paraphrase:

                      Now why was it that you believe nuclear power is a not good idea again?

                      Goodnight.

                    • RedLogix

                      Actually we have already employed the ‘best-brains’ to design all our existing reactors. They have already done what they thought was their best. Yet reality continues to bite them in the bum. At the rate of about one massive core melt-down per decade.

                      I’ve made a point of reading up as much as I can about Chernobyl, Three-Mile Island and Fukushima. I’ve a fairly good idea what the root causes were, what the cascade of events were… and just how remarkably lucky we have been that none of these events (and others) did not escalate into catastrophes far worse.

                      At the current rate of one meltdown per decade (and near misses far more often)… our luck will run out one day. That is why I do not believe nuclear power is a good idea.

                      Nor do most Japanese these days…..

                  • Colonial Viper

                    I still stand by my original statement of ‘we’ve just wasted 25 years burying our heads in the sand’ and that we should be utilising nuclear for power.

                    The only way to make nuclear power profitable is to ignore the massive costs associated with a potential accident (or make the government shoulder all the risk and cost), and also to run down the plant and equipment with insufficient maintenance and replacement.

                    Fukushima is a classic example. Over-full spent fuel storage pools which overheated rapidly once coolant systems failed.

                    Why were the storage pools over-full?

                    Because it would have cost money to build new storage pools or use long term storage options. “Cheaper” (in the short term) just to keep stacking the hot spent fuel assemblies tighter and tighter together.

          • prism 4.1.4.1.2

            Is it national stupid day or what?
            Every day mate.

      • RedLogix 4.1.5

        Once upon a time I used to work with quite strong nuclear sources, (Kr85 and Ce135 to be exact) in an industrial setting. The Kr85 beta source in particular was strong enough to instantly destroy eyesight and give severe skin burns.

        Needless to say there was a whole bunch of training, regulations and rules around every aspect of transporting, operating and disposing of them. Even so I was always ‘on alert’ whenever anything out of the ordinary needed doing with them.

        But there is an enormous gulf between the amount of material we were using and that used in a typical nuclear reactor site. Many orders of magnitude. Like comparing the amount of rock in a wheelbarrow with the mass of the Tararuras.

        So it’s bizarre and baffling that you absolutely rely on someone (like pmofnz above) to try and derail any discussion around nuclear energy by trying to conflate the exceedingly low risk industrial and medical applications of nuclear isotopes…with the utterly different risk inherent in large scale nuclear power plants.

        So far we have been operating about 450 odd nuclear power reactors on an industrial scale for about 50 years. In that time at least 5 reactors have suffered massive accidents and meltdowns. That is about one per decade. There have also been numerous near-misses and lessor incidents that most people outside the industry are unaware of.

        Worse still we have yet to see the real downside risk of these plants as they increasingly age and are ultimately de-commissioned. There is an immense expense involved in de-fuelling, de-constructing and safely storing huge amounts of radioactive waste material (of varying levels of risk) for not just decades but centuries. And this can ONLY be achieved safely in the context of a politically, economically stable, technically advanced and capable society.

        The danger from nuclear reactors is locked in. Once you start operating one you are committed to a several hundred year process. Failure, technical, economic or political at any point in that huge period is potentially catastrophic. Not just failures we can imagine, but ones we never guessed at … like Fukushima… are the ones that will almost certainly bite us.

        Oh and just for one minute consider what would have happened if the Sendai quake had occurred 12 hrs later. Instead of it happening of a Friday morning when the plants were fully staffed with over 1000 people on site, there would have been a tiny(<30) number of operating staff available at both Fukishima Dai-ichi and Dai-ini. In the middle of the night this handful of staff on both sites would have been overwhelmed, and most others would have been unable to get back in time to prevent an event vastly more catastrophic than what has already happened.

        And if the wind perchance had blown in the wrong direction the death toll would have been in the tens of millions. Madness.

      • joe90 4.1.6

        @ pmofnz

        Louis Slotin and the criticality accident.

        • pmofnz 4.1.6.1

          There’s a big difference between some nutter doing a Darwin fiddling around with critical masses of nuke weapons grade materiel and the hundreds of operational nuke plants safely providing power and propulsion worldwide.

          • RedLogix 4.1.6.1.1

            So you haven’t noticed any nuclear plants that failed to operate safely have you? Just pretending no meltdowns have ever happened? And no close calls either?

            Of course you won’t have read about the incident at a major Ohio nuclear plant during the Northeast power blackout of 2003.

            When the grid tripped out the plant lost load so the six reactors on site all had to be scrammed. Now the eight diesel electric power plants had about 90 seconds to start up in order to handle the substantial amount of residual power still being generated. Immediately after the control rods are inserted there remains about 5% of the rated power still being created. For a typical 1000MW generator that’s still 50MW of power that has to be removed. Ever looked into the guts of a 10MW steam boiler running? It’s a shit-load of heat, and without circulating water to remove that heat the core of the reactors will start to disintegrate within a remarkably short period of time.

            The diesels are essential to power the huge pumps that circulate that cooling water. On the day of this blackout seven of the eight diesels failed to start immediately for one reason or another.

            If the eighth one had failed to start… the USA would no longer exist as a nation. Never made the news, but I’ve personally read the technical report.

          • Colonial Viper 4.1.6.1.2

            There’s a big difference between some nutter doing a Darwin fiddling around with critical masses of nuke weapons grade materiel

            You better read up on the two Tokaimura criticality incidents in Japan.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tokaimura_nuclear_accident

            • pmofnz 4.1.6.1.2.1

              Actually CV I have looked at the 22 reported criticality incidents and the common theme is
              cause of the accident was said to be “human error and serious breaches of safety principles”.

              A lot of the incidents appear to have occurred in lab situations, during testing, not in industrial scale operations, where operators have done something decidedly dodgy.

          • Foreign Waka 4.1.6.1.3

            “Who does not know the truth, is simply a fool…
            Yet who knows the truth and calls it a lie, is a criminal…..
            B. Brecht: Galileo Galilei

            Interested in some truth?
            http://www.nirs.org/reactorwatch/accidents/chernob_report2011webippnw.pdf

  5. Jenny 5

    I have never been prouder of NZ than I was when we went Nuclear Free. We put principle ahead of profit, we stood up to some heavy diplomatic pressure, and we spoke our piece to the world.

    ANTHONY R0BINS

    We need to feel that pride again. We again need to put principle ahead of profit. We again need to stand up to heavy political, and corporate pressure. We need to speak our piece to the world.

    Kiwis against a Cold War, to Kiwis against a Warming World

    Nuclear War was the greatest threat to humanity and the planet in the 20th Century.

    Despite being far from the probable theatre of any nuclear exchange, and the least in danger of any people on Earth. In 1984 New Zealanders took a stand and we became Nuclear Free.

    New Zealanders stood up to the global superpowers of the time. By stepping out of their dangerous game of global nuclear rivalry and kilatonnes per- humanbeing one-upmanship. We signaled to the world that this state of affairs was not acceptable. We signaled to the world, that a free people needn’t choose to live under the nuclear threat.

    Climate Change is the greatest threat to humanity and the planet in the 21st Century.

    Despite being responsible for only 0.2% global warming. We again need to signal to the world that this state of affairs is not acceptable. The greatest single threat to the climate globally, is the mining and burning of coal. By 2014 New Zealanders need to take a stand and become Coal Free.

    We need to signal to the world that the destruction of the bio-sphere is not something that a free people need to live with.

    • OneTrack 5.1

      ” In 1984 New Zealanders took a stand and we became Nuclear Free.”

      And did that make any difference to anybody else? Nope. So why be so proud of it?

      Global warming, oops I mean climate change? No warming in over ten years means this is becoming a hard argument to sustain. People are losing the faith.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1

        http://climate.nasa.gov/keyIndicators/

        Still looks like it’s going up to me which would indicate that you’re either lying or just repeating some BS that you heard from somebody who was lying.

      • Jenny 5.1.2

        And did that make any difference to anybody else? Nope. So why be so proud of it?

        OneTrack

        Shamefully, as everyone knows David Lange announced that this policy was not for export.

        Despite this, the policy did start to spread, being especially popular in the island nations of the the Pacific. The Labour government of Fiji under the leadership of Timoti Bavandra was elected in 1987on a policy of increasing trade union rights, instituting a state housing programme, and significantly a declared intention to make Fiji Nuclear Free.

        Like New Zealand this policy did not come out of thin air, the Fiji Anti-Nuclear Group, FANG, was an influential protest and lobby group, with links to the powerful Fijian trade union movement.

        The sea walls of Suva harbour were daubed with large FANG anti-Nuclear graffiti much to the chagrin of the visiting US navy. As the saying goes, the writing was on the wall for the US nuclear navy in Fiji.

        All this was swept away in the military coup led by Colonel Sitveni Rabuka. Union rights were curtailed and union leaders jailed. The state housing programme was canceled. And, the red carpet was again rolled out for US navy nuclear warship visits.

      • Foreign Waka 5.1.3

        OneTrack – Are you aware of the admiration around the world for NZ anti nuclear stance? NZlaenders have every reason to be proud to be most likely the ONLY country in the world where kids can grow up without having their genetic material forever altered by just playing in the sandpit. Are you really aware what it means?

    • Colonial Viper 5.2

      Japan ending nuclear power has meant that millions more tonnes of oil and coal is being burnt in their thermal plants.

  6. Steve Wrathall 6

    The fact that after 25 years not a single other country has followed this “leadership” is fair comment on the quality of this policy. Indeed, the eastern European communist dictatorships at the time praised the Lange government’s pre-emptive appeasement. Once their people were free to choose they jumped boots and all into NATO. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, Russian generals admitted it was the hard-line Reagan/Thatcher policies of containment that accelerated the fall of communism. The fact that NZ deserted the Western Alliance at the 11th hour is nothing to be proud of.

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    On the Left | 22-11
  • Who or What Was Onboard MH370, That Someone Doesn’t Want Found?
    239 people (including crew) were onboard MH370 when it mysteriously disappeared on March 8th this year.  Not one single piece of confirmed wreckage has ever been found, nor has a definite crash area been identified. I, like I am sure...
    An average kiwi | 22-11
  • 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #47B
    Acid maps reveal worst of climate change Buffalo mega snowstorm tied to climate change? China will place a limit on coal use in 2020 Climate change investment falls for second year in 2013 Fossil-fueled Republicanism  House Republicans just passed a...
    Skeptical Science | 22-11
  • For oil companies, our rights are just another obstacle
    Once upon a time fossil fuel exploration took place far away, out of sight and out of mind. But as oil and gas giants become ever more desperate for new reserves they’re prepared to drill in places that were previously...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-11
  • The Arctic Sunrise, her journey continues
    Last Saturday, the ecologically pristine area around the Canary Islands was the watery stage of the next chapter in the story of the Arctic Sunrise. Last year, she carried Greenpeace activists across icy waters North of Russia, where they protested...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-11
  • New Wynyard Hotel disappointing
    More details were released yesterday surrounding a new luxury hotel – to be known as Park Hyatt Auckland – that is going to be built on the waterfront, on the site that currently houses the Team New Zealand headquarters.   The...
    Transport Blog | 22-11
  • Guest post: what should Andrew Little learn from Ed Miliband?
    John tweets at @mrduttonpeabody. A Labour leader being elected on the back of an election loss, through a system of weighted bloc votes, is familiar to anyone who follows UK politics. The 2010 UK Labour leadership election saw Ed Miliband...
    On the Left | 22-11
  • October 14 Patronage
    October’s patronage results show Aucklanders are continuing to flock to buses and trains. It’s especially true for the rapid transit network which is seeing staggering growth, up over 20% compared to the same month last year. It’s showing that the public...
    Transport Blog | 21-11
  • Hurray for “Hurray For The Riff Raff”!
     FIRST RATE AMERICANA came to Auckland's Tuning Fork venue last night in the form of the Alt-Country, Indie-Folk roots band Hurray For The Riff Raff. Led by Alynda Lee Segarra, the 27-year-old Peurto Rican singer-songwriter out of New Orleans via New...
    Bowalley Road | 21-11
  • Capture: Movement
    It felt like we were overdue for a post, and when I took the time to look back at what had come before, I realised yesterday we turned three. So before we get into it, thanks once again for another...
    Public Address | 21-11
  • Saturday playlist: new Labour leader
    It was difficult, but we managed to restrain ourselves from only posting songs with “Little” in the title … Add your (nice) suggestions below!...
    On the Left | 21-11
  • Stuart’s 100 #57: Grow your own
    57: Grow your own What if supermarkets could grow their own? Supermarkets, like service stations, are in that category of activities that are of such necessity and ubiquity to our daily life that they cumulatively have a very large footprint...
    Transport Blog | 21-11
  • The best of Neetflux (so far)
    A selection of our favourite Neetflux posters to date. Here’s to more awesome political satire to come! (Click through for full-size on Neetflux’s Tumblr)...
    On the Left | 21-11
  • Chipping away at police unaccountability
    Traditionally, our police have enjoyed a wide discretion over who to prosecute and how. Sometimes, this is a good thing - it means that the time of the courts is not wasted on minor crimes. In other cases, its use...
    No Right Turn | 21-11
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    frogblog | 21-11
  • CTU disappointed by poor government advice to workers on petrol station dri...
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (‘MBIE’) regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue. Photo:  ...
    CTU | 21-11
  • Charging petrol station workers for drive-offs
    So workers at Masterton’s Night ‘n Day store have had their pay docked when criminals drive off without paying. From the flood of complaints coming from around the country, it’s not a practice that is confined only to Masterton, nor is it...
    Occasionally erudite | 21-11
  • Tearing up Westminster
    The central bargain of Westminster democracy is that the monarch stays out of politics, and in exchange they get to stay in the role, both legally and literally. Prince Charles - already famous for his undemocratic interventions in politics -...
    No Right Turn | 21-11
  • Journalism is not terrorism
    What happens if you're a UK journalist and you campaign for press freedom or report on police misconduct? The police database you as a terrorist:A group of journalists has launched a legal action against Scotland Yard after discovering that the...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • A century of changing transport spending
    Via Donal Curtin, I got wind of a fantastic Statistics NZ visualisation of changes to the Consumer Price Index over the last century. The Consumer Price Index, or CPI, is a tool that statistics agencies use to track inflation over...
    Transport Blog | 20-11
  • Boycott thieving employers
    In the past few days, we've learned of a new employer horror: petrol-station workers, often on th eminimum wage, being forced to pay for the crimes of their customers. Its unfair, immoral, and possibly illegal. So what can we do...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • Sexism, rape culture and power
    Our discourse around sexual violence is complicated. All too often perpetrators are described as ‘monsters’, so when someone you know tells you the lovely man that you really like sexually abused them it’s hard to believe, because they’re not a...
    Greens | 23-11
  • Time for an economy that works for all New Zealanders
    New Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says the challenge for the National Government is to support an economy that delivers good, sustainable jobs paying decent wages. “It’s time the economy delivered for all New Zealanders, not just the fortunate few....
    Labour | 23-11
  • New faces, wise heads in bold Labour line up
    Labour Leader Andrew Little today announced a bold new caucus line up which brings forward new talent and draws on the party’s depth of experience....
    Labour | 23-11
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    Greens | 21-11
  • National opens door further to Chinese property speculators
    National has further opened the door to Chinese property speculators with the registration of a third Chinese bank here that will make it easier for Chinese investors to invest in New Zealand properties, the Green Party said today."As well, former...
    Greens | 20-11
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour | 20-11
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour | 19-11
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens | 19-11
  • National caught out on state house porkies
    Housing NZ’s annual report out today directly contradicts the Government’s claim that one-third of its houses are in the wrong place and are the wrong size, said Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The annual report states 96 per cent of...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Damning report on Department of Conservation restructure
    The restructuring of the Department of Conservation (DOC) following National's severe funding cuts has been revealed as failure, the Green Party said today.The Taribon report has reviewed the new structure of DOC after 12 months. The restructuring, one of the...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Greens welcome Xi, but human rights need to be on agenda
    The Green Party welcomes the visit to New Zealand of Chinese President Xi Jinping and wishes to congratulate him on his recent announcement regarding China capping emissions for the first time.The United States and China recently unveiled a deal to...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Backing New Zealanders to get ahead
    New Labour Leader Andrew Little says it is an immense privilege to have been chosen to lead the party and to be given the task of ensuring it once again becomes a powerful force that backs New Zealanders in getting...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Andrew Little Elected Leader of Labour Party
    “The Labour Party congratulates Andrew Little, who has been elected as party leader in a robust and highly democratic process,” says Labour Party President Moira Coatsworth. “Andrew’s leadership will have the full support of the whole Labour Party.”...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Report into Brownlee security breach should be released
    The Government and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) should release the report into former Minister of Transport Gerry Brownlee's airport security breach, the Green Party said today."The actions of a Minister of Transport breaching security at an airport are a matter...
    Greens | 17-11
  • Brownlee must ask CAA to release the report
    Gerry Brownlee must ask the Civil Aviation Authority to release the report that finds he broke the law in breaching airport security, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It is inexcusable for any minister, let alone the then-Transport Minister, to...
    Labour | 17-11
  • G20 climate comment increases pressure on NZ
    The G20 decision to include climate change in its communiqué despite Australia's attempt to ignore it, increases pressure on New Zealand to come up with a credible plan to cut emissions, the Green Party said today.The G20 Leaders Communiqué from...
    Greens | 17-11
  • NZ joins G20 climate problem
    Confirmation this morning by John Key that his Government plans to do nothing to turn around NZ's rapidly rising greenhouse emissions means that New Zealand joins Australia as one of the problem children at the G20 meeting in Brisbane, the...
    Greens | 16-11
  • IRD joins Corrections in Phillip Smith failure
    It is incomprehensible that IRD and Corrections were not able to stop Phillip Smith from rorting the tax system out of $50,000 until it was too late, given that he was a notoriously manipulative prisoner stuck in jail, says Labour’s...
    Labour | 13-11
  • The Government has to listen to Olly
    When even hard boiled property investors like Olly Newland  say first home buyers have been shafted by Loan to Value Ratio lending restrictions, surely it is time for the Government to listen, says Labour's housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  "Auckland landlord...
    Labour | 13-11
  • Key used GCSB for political ends prior to 2014 election
    New documents released to the Green Party show that Prime Minister John Key used New Zealand's intelligence services for the National Party's political ends a few days out from the 2014 election, the Green Party said today.Documents released to the...
    Greens | 13-11
  • Government not meeting its climate target
    The Government must front up to the fact that its own advisors are now saying that New Zealand is off target in any transition to a low carbon future, says Labour’s spokesperson on Climate Change Nanaia Mahuta.  “A briefing to...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Briefing reveals Defence facilities ‘increasingly unfit for purpose’
    The Defence Briefing to the Incoming Minister reveals a deteriorating state in Defence facilities that are no longer fit for purpose, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  “The briefing is heavily censored but still reveals that Defence camps, bases and...
    Labour | 12-11
  • New projections show New Zealand missing climate target
    Briefings to Incoming Ministers released today reveal the Government's climate policy is failing with projected emission more than double what is needed to meet National's 2050 target, the Green Party saidProjections released by the Ministry for the Environment, as part...
    Greens | 12-11
  • National’s highways far less efficient
    National’s new state highways have a far lower cost-benefit ratio than motorways built under the last Labour Government, making a mockery of the Government’s bluster that its road building will boost the economy, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “New...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Governor points finger at National on supply
    The Reserve Bank Governor has admitted he had to keep loan to value mortgage restrictions in place because the Government’s attempts to increase housing has fallen ‘a long way short’, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The thousands of first...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Did Collins cover up Slater’s OIA requests?
    Disgraced former Cabinet Minister Judith Collins must explain why she appears to have tried to hide Official Information Act requests she fulfilled for Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “New documents obtained by Labour show Judith...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Reserve Bank’s dairy warning must be heard
    The Reserve Bank’s warning that falling dairy prices are creating greater risks for the New Zealand economy must be taken seriously by Bill English and John Key, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “Dairy prices have nearly halved since February...
    Labour | 11-11
  • National’s housing failure keeps LVRs in place
    The Reserve Bank’s decision to leave loan-to-value ratio mortgage restrictions in place is further confirmation of National’s housing policy fiasco, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank would have lifted LVRs if they had seen any increase in...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Let’s see if it is plane sailing Mr Bridges
    Comments by Transport Minister Simon Bridges that Far North residents' anger over cutbacks to regional flights will be allayed by larger planes and cheaper fares out of Kerikeri, are just pure arrogance, says Labour’s Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis....
    Labour | 11-11
  • Commerce Commission inquiry needed into building supplies monopoly
    The Commerce Commission must stop dragging the chain and urgently investigate the anti-competitive practices in the building industry that are driving up the cost of building materials, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Competition in the building materials market is...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air New Zealand grounds Far North
    The announcement by Air New Zealand to close services from Kaitaia to Auckland will be an absolute disaster for the Far North, Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis says.  “Air New Zealand is sending a signal to the...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Pulling West Coast flights a savage blow
    Air New Zealand’s decision to withdraw its Westport service is another kick in the guts for an already struggling community, West Coast-Tasman MP, Damien O’Connor says.   “Having been involved in the West Coast’s efforts to get Air Nelson to return...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air NZ cuts economic lifelines to neglected regions
    Air New Zealand’s plans to cut its Eagle Air regional services to already struggling regions is a hammer blow to Westport, Whakatane and Kaitaia, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The regions of New Zealand are being abandoned by this...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Christchurch on the rent rack
    A jump of 20 per cent in weekly rents in the past year is a disaster for Christchurch, says Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Trade Me Property Rental Price index has rightly described the city as being a ‘...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Past time to act on warnings about palliative care
    Health officials have been warning the Government about a critical shortage of palliative care specialists for years, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Annette King says. A stocktake carried out for the Ministry of Health shows New Zealand’s end...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Report must spur Government into action
    The soaring cost of domestic violence and child abuse highlight the need for the Government to prioritise and act on the issue, says Labour's spokesperson for Social Development, Sue Moroney.“Findings from the Glenn Inquiry that show the problem is estimated...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Family safety paramount, then urgent review
    Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has some serious questions to answer over why a dangerous prison escapee, convicted of further crimes while in jail, managed to abscond while he was on approved temporary release, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“Phillip...
    Labour | 09-11
  • LVRs a failed experiment from Bill English
    Loan to value mortgage restrictions are a failed experiment from Bill English to tame Auckland house prices, that have caused collateral damage to first home buyers and other regions, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The possible end of LVR...
    Labour | 09-11
  • Govt books getting worse as economy slows
    National’s economic credibility is under serious scrutiny with its search for surplus becoming harder due to an economy far too reliant on the dairy industry, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National promised New Zealanders would get into surplus by...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Kiwis in pain because of Government underfunding
    New research showing one in three people needing elective surgery are being denied publicly-funded operations shows the Government must properly fund the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “For almost two years Labour has been warning about the...
    Labour | 06-11
  • National’s promised surplus looking doubtful
    Budget figures for the first quarter of the financial year released today by Treasury show the Government's goal of achieving a budget surplus is looking doubtful, the Green Party said today."National has staked its credibility on achieving a budget surplus...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour | 06-11
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour | 06-11
  • The Block NZ doing a better job than Nick Smith
    Nick Smith should consider calling in producers of The Block NZ with participants in the TV series completing more houses in two seasons than the Government’s failed Special Housing Area policy, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The Block NZ...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • How biased is the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2014. Photo: DanRogayan A TOP Filipino investigative journalist will be speaking about the “worst attack” on journalists in history and her country’s culture of impunity in a keynote...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Safety Week 2014 focused on a safe summer
    ACC’s annual Safety Week kicks off today. With summer just around the corner, Safety Week this year is focusing on keeping safe when playing sport, enjoying recreational activities or drinking alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Safety focus during motorcycle month
    As the Central District Police annual Month of Motorcycles campaign cruises into its second week, the results so far have been positive with many motorcyclists playing their part to keep our roads safe....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST
    Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST The Sensible Sentencing Trust is slamming a decision which may acquit a Whakatane offender of serious dangerous driving charges....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons
    Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons to show violence towards women is never OK...
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media
    Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media to say “no” to domestic violence Everyone has the right to feel safe at home. Many do not. One in three partnered New Zealand women report having experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner...
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Smoke Alarms in Rental properties
    TPA says recent calls for mandatory smoke alarm installations in rental properties is an opportunity for all parties to come together to improve the safety and quality of rental housing....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • CTU will not engage in Governments sham consultation process
    Today the CTU has sent a letter to Prime Minister John Key articulating serious concerns about both the content and the rushed process the Government has clearly signalled it intends to follow to progress the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Job vacancies steady in October
    The number of skilled job vacancies advertised online remained steady in October across most industry groups and occupations, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s latest Jobs Online report....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • 600 Slaves And Counting on New Zealand Soil
    The 2014 Global Slavery Index has just been released, and buried within its pages is New Zealand’s growing issue of human exploitation and slavery. When taken in conjunction with the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons Report 2014,...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and NZ
    Media Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and New Zealand: Police Commissioners take a stand against violence against women and children...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • NZ Police Commissioner makes a stand against Family Violence
    New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush has joined with his Australian Police Commissioner colleagues at Parliament House in Canberra this morning to take a stand on violence against women and children....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Amnesty International campaigns for end to domestic violence
    Amnesty International will be making a donation of over $500 to Aviva (formerly known as Women’s Refuge Christchurch) at the conclusion of Tuesday’s inner city march against domestic violence....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Waka Hourua celebrates what’s working in suicide prevention
    On 19 and 20 November, Māori and Pasifika national suicide prevention programme Waka Hourua held its first national hui-fono in Auckland. The theme was Whakarauika Mai: Bringing Communities Together to Prevent Suicide in Aotearoa. ...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower
    Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower SKYCITY’s Sky Tower in Auckland will be lit up in white on Monday evening Nov 25th at 10pm, on the eve of White Ribbon Day. The anti-domestic violence network SAFTINET (Safer Auckland Families...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little
    State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little The new Labour leader Andrew Little has called for the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie to be stood down after his handling of the Roger Sutton sexual harassment case. "The idea...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Ashley Dwayne Guy v The Queen: Appeal Upheld
    The appellant, Mr Guy, was found guilty by a jury of a charge of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection. After the verdict it was discovered that, by error, the jury had been provided in the jury room with two...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Zonta Club to Take a Stand Against Gender-Based Violence
    During the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence (25 November – 10 December), the Zonta Club of Wellington, along with members of the local community, will join nearly 1,200 Zonta clubs in 67 countries for the Zonta Says NO...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
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