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A problem of “masculine” values

Written By: - Date published: 8:01 am, July 7th, 2013 - 120 comments
Categories: benefits, class war, democratic participation, feminism, john key, labour, Left, news, poverty, sexism, spin - Tags:

This is largely a re-post.  I agree totally with QOT, on the way the MSM have followed the whale’s lead on the issue of the Labour Party remit: a remit that was attempting to counter the gender imbalance in politics.  In their usual way these days, the MSM coverage lacks critical depth, is over-simplified, stirs up dramatic conflict, and fails to put the issue in context.

The post below is on a speech at the 2012 NZ Labour Party Conference on gender and politics.  To me it looks like the latest Labour Party remit on gender was following up on some recommendations in that speech.

I argue that the main gender problem is the way politics (and the dominant political commentariate) currently tends to maintain the legacy of a very long “masculine” tradition.  In doing this, traditional areas of women’s activity and modes of interaction are undermined.  And it is such values that run all through John Key’s (16 15 women Nat MPs out of 59) government, it’s “war on the poor”, and the primacy it gives to the ruthless and competitive world of corporations in partnership with political power.

poverty-and-women

The public debate on the (one among others) suggestion of excluding men from some candidate lists, has been frustratingly over-burdened with such values: it can be seen in the rush to denounce anything that looks like feminism, and to separate issues damaging to women, from other, highly pressing, political issues.

David Shearer seems to have slipped back into fiddler-beneficiary-on-the-roof mode in his rush to placate the MSM and right wingers, by denouncing the (alleged) “man ban”), and thereby reinforcing their biases.  Shearer fails to provide an adequate alternative narrative, and, in his silence, condones Shane Jones’ misogynistic labeling of women politicians as “geldings”. This is not the way for a left wing party of the 21st century, to court the men and women who make up the low income electorate.

Below is a copy of the post that I published on November 22nd, 2012

The Labour Party conference at the weekend gave serious attention to crucial issues of gender and politics.  In a speech, Judy McGregor provided some good suggestions for a new approach.  Her focus was on two  main areas: proportion of women MPs in the party and equal pay.  However, her speech fell short in scope and depth.  It also demonstrated the same shortcomings that I see throughout the conference: a strong focus on employment and change within the existing framework.  There was a lower priority given to unpaid wirk in the home and community; work done by a large proportion of women.

McGregor focused on two aspects of gender and politics that are in need of urgent attention, and which are covered in remits considered at the conference.  The representation of women in the House, and equal pay have gone backwards since NAct have been in government.  McGregor presented statistics to show that the proportion on women MPs has declined, while the gender pay gap is now the biggest it has been for 10 years.

McGregor argued that there is everything for the Labour Party to gain from working towards gender equality.  She pointed out that, while NZ doesn’t have a clear gender voting pattern, we can learn from the recent US election. There was an 18% positive swing of female voters for Obama. McGregor’s proposed new approach to MP equality includes:

  • a formal commitment to 50% MPs
  • equal gender quotas on committees selecting candiates for the party list and electorates
  • mentoring by current women MPs – to mentor at least 6 possible women MP candidates

This is great as far as it goes, but it fails to deal with the underlying framework that restricts women. Parliamentary politics is still carried out within a masculine framework.  Women in positions of power have to represent themselves as being tough, but not so masculine as to upset conventional gender expectations.

This was exposed when McGregor described the mentoring proposal as a “stiletto camp” in contrast to a boot camp.  My immediate response to that was - nah; yeah; nah.  This draws on an acceptable femme fatale image of a powerful, but sexualised, woman operating in a restrictive masculine space.  It doesn’t challenge the masculine rules of play, but accommodates to it.

Unfortunately those masculine rules of combative play are everywhere to be seen in Question Time and MSM political coverage.  The current Labour Party leadership is strongly operating within these terms of engagement: it can be seen in the way they have “dealt to” the LP members pushing for democratic change, and to Cunliffe’s leadership ambitions.  It can be seen in Shearer’s tough guy plays, in his attempt to stamp his authority on the caucus and membership, over the last week.

For women to again be among the leading players in the Labour Party, this style of politics needs to change, not just the gender quotas. Generally speaking, a significant proportion of women prefer negotiation, networking and 2-way communication over the stamping of authority from above.

In focusing on the pay gap, McGregor focused on the paid workforce.  While this is in crucial need of attention, she also neglected the underlying framework, in which women are still preferred in caring roles, paid and unpaid, and which are given low status by society.  McGregor drew on her undercover experience, working in age care facilities. This low paid work is largely done by women for less than $14-15 per hour.  Nurses create a positive caring culture, but earn less than employees with similar qualifications, doing similar work in other hospitals.  McGregor described it as a “form of modern day slavery”.

McGregor said a report on age care work got a positive reception by a lot of potential voters, including 40,00 carers.  Pay parity for carers is a fundamental human right and is affordable, costing about 1% of the total health budget over 3 yrs. McGregor implicitly compared Labour’s worker-friendly approach with that of the Key government, when she said:

  Surely we don’t need to ask Warner Brothers for permission on this one.

McGregor encouraged the Labour Party to promote itself as THE party to bring possible change for women and their families.  A worthy ambition.  However, at the moment the Green Party are well ahead of them on this.  50% of their women are MPs, and they, along with Mana have led the campaigns against poverty. They have not just focused on the paid workforce, but have actively campaigned for all low income households – beneficiaries and the employed.  They haven’t set this merely as a goal, but MPs like Hone Harawira and Metiria Turei have been out on the streets campaigning along side those with least power.

Unfortunately, in spite of the gender equality in numbers, The Greens have also been sucked into the masculine framework strengthened by NAct and the MSM: Russel Norman is now being portrayed as the de facto leader of the Party, while much of the important leg work is being done by women MPs.

It is the underlying macho, game-playing culture of political engagement that needs changing, along with the more obvious need for gender equality.  The changes required include the need for more democratic processes of political engagement, genuine communication and negotiations.  This should be linked with the need for wider cultural change, in which paid and unpaid caring work is given far more status.

120 comments on “A problem of “masculine” values”

  1. And it is such values that run all through John Key’s (16 women Nat MPs out of 59) government …

    I’ve seen this figure of 16 cited a fair bit. I think it is wrong. Parliament’s website lists 15 female MPs from the National Party: http://www.parliament.nz/en-NZ/MPP/MPs/MPs/Default.htm?pf=Gender&sf=Female&lgc=0

  2. “I argue that the main gender problem is the way politics (and the dominant political commentariate) currently tends to maintain the legacy of a very long “masculine” tradition. In doing this, traditional areas of women’s activity and modes of interaction are undermined.”

    The counter argument is that protection is traditionally a masculine role and that government is supposed to protect the rights of its citizens.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1

      Yes, because no mother ever protected anything.

      Duh.

      • UglyTruth 2.1.1

        The masculine role of protection is from the common law. This role has been marginalized as part of the civil system’s misrepresentation of the the nature of the common law.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.1.1

          Not this shit again.

          • UglyTruth 2.1.1.1.1

            Ignorance of the law is no excuse.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.1.1.1.1

              I agree. Your ignorance seems wilful to the point of dishonesty to me.

              • UglyTruth

                What do you think that I am ignorant of, knuckle dragger?

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  The law.

                  Shall I link to the schooling you recently received from an actual lawyer?

                  • UglyTruth

                    If you understand the issues then you should be able to argue for yourself.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      Why have a dog and bark yourself?

                    • UglyTruth

                      So what’s your point, knuckle dragger?

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      That protection is not, as you were claiming, the sole province of men, and further, that your “understanding” of the law is an intellectual handicap.

                    • UglyTruth

                      Comprehension fail, knuckle dragger.

                      I didn’t claim that protection was the sole province of men. What I said was that “the masculine role of protection is from the common law”. My statement does not imply that women do not protect their children.

                      Speaking of intellectual handicaps, why haven’t you been able to substantiate your assertion that I was ignorant (of something relevant)?

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      “…you are relying on a single dictionary definition, rather than understanding how the term is used by those who are expert in the field…”

                      Andrew Geddis. My bold.

                      Substantiated. As though the link wasn’t enough.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.2

          The masculine role of protection is from the common law.

          We’re not in the 15th century any more. We’ve moved on from that bit of ideological dogma due to the fact that we’ve learned a bit since then.

          • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.1.2.1

            And of course, it was the common law position that drove the dogma, not any kind of religious teaching, no sirree!

          • karol 2.1.1.2.2

            Indeed, DTB.

            UT seems to believe in a mythical and (to him) golden age when men were autonomous benevolent father protectors, and women loved being subservient to them.

            In fact the reality was probably more as is portrayed in the (mythical) Game of Thrones: where fathers ship off any sons that don’t measure up, to The Wall and the Wildings; and most women are just pawns in the brutal power games (except for the few who learn to participate in the violent power games with any level of success).

  3. Alanz 3

    Cheers, ‘karol’.

    May I say I appreciate reading your piece first thing this morning. It makes me feel good this Sunday morning (no need to read anything else for now) and I can start my day on a positive note.

    The “masculine” values, framework and culture – as well as attitudes, perspectives and style – that dominate in the House, and are particularly evident during Question Time, must change. And it is through structural changes by way of policy measures such as, but not limited to, Labour’s proposal that would be needed and necessary.

    Keep the Light shining!

  4. JK 4

    ” For women to again be among the leading players in the Labour Party, this style of politics needs to change, not just the gender quotas. Generally speaking, a significant proportion of women prefer negotiation, networking and 2-way communication over the stamping of authority from above.”

    Yes – Karol – I’d agree, and this is just what the Party organisation has been doing – working through the rules to reach a point where it might be possible for women to be 50% of the Labour caucus – as endorsed strongly by the 2012 Conference.

    The MSM were at that conference – but they obviously couldn’t see beyond their own noses picking at their version of their perceived Shearer-Cunliffe contest, and so this report and recommendation from the Labour Party council as come as a BIG surprise to the MSM !

    And of course the blokey blokes in the Labour caucus led by Shearer are running scared. Hence all the macho claptrap coming out of their unreconstructed mouths.

    Word has it that the blokes are going to overturn all progressive policy remits at the next conference ….. which will really send Labour down the slippery slopes of no return !! Like the MSM, they can’t see beyond their own noses either !

    By the way – if you want the full version of what Labour has decided to put forward to its next conference (November, in Christchurch) – its on Scoop NZ News, as an attachment.

    • Rogue Trooper 4.1

      Good Lord!

    • Saarbo 4.2

      “Word has it that the blokes are going to overturn all progressive policy remits at the next conference ….. which will really send Labour down the slippery slopes of no return !! Like the MSM, they can’t see beyond their own noses either !”

      How can anyone justify less than 50% women in Parliament, it is simply unjustifiable…if the so called Labour “Blokes” are going to overturn the progressive policy’s then we will see Labour get even less than 25% of the vote in 2014. Labour once again wasted an opportunity here, they should have gone onto attack over this, made a lot of noise about National Party’s unbelievable male bias in their caucus. The big problem is that this Labour Party simply have no talent in being able to sell its policies and sell itself. It may be true that when people hear “Man Ban” that they react negatively, but if Labour had gone on the attack they could have changed the narrative on this, turned it around.

      The question is why are so many men scared of this policy? What sort of fucked up upbringing have males had that makes them afraid of women in positions of authority. Recently I put my name forward for my kids school Board of Trustees. I was then approached by a local man in his mid 50′s who has grand-kids at the school, he said “I’m glad you have put your name forward, we need good strong MEN on the board”, I asked him why he felt the board needed men as opposed to women, he obviously had no rational response.

      I can come up with several other instances of witnessing this sort of behavior over the years, the one common denominator is that the males are all Baby Boomers…so guess the problem will eventually wash out.

      Discrimination against women is still very much alive in New Zealand…which is why this policy in labour is critical, any male that suggests otherwise is bull shitting.

  5. ghostwhowalksnz 5

    How come the previous week , Key proposed suspending the ‘one man or woman, one vote’ rule when ever National falls short of a majority.

    Apparently it would be an outrage if they dont have the reins of power in spite of not having a majority coalition.

    Not a squeak from the media commentators ? Not a word about this breathtaking attempt to defeat the will of the majority

    The reason why, is the message is controlled by the National party. This manban’ thing was run by Nationals dirty tricks unit, who are heavily infiltrated into the Labour party hierachy, and they feed this stuff to Whaleoil blog.

    Farrar is also behind all this, as he has since his first paid job/internship with National ( when he got arrested for one of his anti labour tricks).

    But of course now , he claims hes respectable, so doesnt break these stories on his Farragoblog

  6. Jimmie 6

    So whats the solution?

    All MP’s have to sit around in a circle drinking latte’s and knitting a scarf while they have a quiet chat about proposed new laws? isn’t that pushing a stereotype?

    I would have thought that from a feminist’s point of view they would be insulted to think that they need to be treated differently from men?

    Surely (if you hold the view that men and women are the same and equal) that you must allow women to fight to the top on their own merit and ability as this proves the feminist POV that both sexes are the same.

    As long as there is no law or party policy excluding female participation then women should be left to their own devices (men as well) in order to pursue a career in politics.

    If after allowing such a policy for several years you end up with some inbalance in gender numbers o just accept that more women in general do not wish to pursue a political career than men.

    In some respects this policy smacks of hypocrisy as the proponents for many years have cried that they are equal to men in all respects and should be treated as such however when it comes to political representation women are to be considered ‘weaker’ and so need the rules to be twisted to favour them.

    It is this inherent unfairness that has made this a real vote loser for Labour.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 6.1

      Are those feeble strawmen the best you’ve got? I appreciate it’s hard to argue against your opponents’ actual position when you’re as thick as pigshit, but you could try a bit harder.

      Don’t worry though, the National Party makes allowances for male gimps, so you’ll be ok.

      We need better wingnuts.

      • Jimmie 6.1.1

        Well yeah I guess time will tell if this policy change is a vote winner Knucklenuts – doesn’t look so good so far.

        You obviously couldn’t argue the points I made so made a feeble attempt at personal abuse – you are obviously emotionally still tied to your kindergarten years.

        Grow up and learn how to debate and argue points – shows that you have emotionally matured beyond the point of puberty.

        What a dimwit.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 6.1.1.1

          You didn’t make any “points”, Jimmie: you just made up some lies about what other people think.

    • QoT 6.2

      (if you hold the view that men and women are the same and equal)

      Ah, that old chestnut. The argument isn’t that men and women are exactly the same and equal. The argument is that men and women should be judged on equal terms and provided equal opportunities and advantages. They’re currently not.

      Which is why it’s oh so handy for Neanderthals like Alasdair Thompson to have a go at women who take time off to have babies. Women are made unequal by a society which doesn’t consider raising babies to be a job either parent can do. I could go on, but my head’s already sore from banging against brick walls.

      • Jimmie 6.2.1

        Honestly QOT I cannot accept that.

        Are you saying that if a woman and man with similar levels of talent and life experience walked in off the street and joined Labour, spent several years doing party stuff and donations.

        They both then work their way up to the point where they are both suitable to stand for an electorate seat.

        Suddenly in the selection process there is a mysterious but real bias in the selection process that says that more often than not in these circumstances the woman will get the short shift and the man will get in purely based on his gender.

        I’m sorry but Labour 2013? I just don’t see that being a reality.

        And this is why there has been such a bad reaction to this proposed policy. That is why this is seen more as a factional push rather than fixing a real injustice.

        Again Labour as a whole is suffering while one faction is trying to get the power ascendancy.

        Last year it was the Unions and now the feminists – infighting doesn’t win elections and never will.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 6.2.1.1

          Yes, Labour should never discuss anything for fear of what its opponents will say. That’s a decent summation of your “argument”, eh Jimmie.

          You can probably go from there to filling in what I think of your argument for yourself.

        • QoT 6.2.1.2

          Suddenly in the selection process there is a mysterious but real bias in the selection process that says that more often than not in these circumstances the woman will get the short shift and the man will get in purely based on his gender.

          Yes. It’s called “gosh, they’re both great, but we don’t think this electorate will vote for a woman”. Sometimes it’s “wow, they’re both terrific candidates, but she might want to go have babies in a few years, do we really want to invest in her political career?” or “she has missed a few meetings to take care of her sick kids, she’s not as committed”.

          Or any other of a dozen misogynist attitudes which are played out every single day in organisations around the western world.

          • Jimmie 6.2.1.2.1

            Then surely the answer is not to disadvantage men as it were, the answer is to boot out the selectors who are holding these outdated views?

            Have a ‘cleansing’ of the Labour party hierarchy who would dare to have a bias against women and ensure that only Labourites with a pure liberal outlook in life select candidates based on merit only.

            When the committee is discussing each candidate you could have a women’s rights officer on the committee who would ensure strict judging based on merit only (and with the power to veto and biased decisions)

            Simple done

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 6.2.1.2.1.1

              Equality doesn’t “disadvantage” men – quite the opposite – it removes the suspicion that they are only there because of their gender.

            • QoT 6.2.1.2.1.2

              The fact that you yourself mock the idea of being able to ensure the selectors don’t hold sexist (or racist, or ableist, or even classist) views kind of proves my point.

          • Saarbo 6.2.1.2.2

            “Yes. It’s called “gosh, they’re both great, but we don’t think this electorate will vote for a woman”. Sometimes it’s “wow, they’re both terrific candidates, but she might want to go have babies in a few years, do we really want to invest in her political career?” or “she has missed a few meetings to take care of her sick kids, she’s not as committed”.”

            Yes you are right QoT, out side of Politics I have been on Boards and Management groups made up of men only and I have heard men make these comments heaps of times, and I reckon any male who has been in similar positions is bull shitting if they havent witnessed the same.

        • weka 6.2.1.3

          Suddenly in the selection process there is a mysterious but real bias in the selection process that says that more often than not in these circumstances the woman will get the short shift and the man will get in purely based on his gender.

          Jimmie, seriously dude, go and educate yourself on this. You are wrong. Start here

          http://thestandard.org.nz/a-problem-of-masculine-values/#comment-659340

      • Populuxe1 6.2.2

        “The argument is that men and women should be judged on equal terms and provided equal opportunities and advantages. They’re currently not.”
        So it does seem slightly disingenious to “provide equal opportunities and advantages” by providing *special* “opportunities and advantages”. I don’t particularly have a problem with the concept provided the levelling of the playing field is a genuine levelling with a demonstrable benefit beyond making people feel better, but the double-speak is likely to put off the more sensitive souls.

        • QoT 6.2.2.1

          Except that, as has been shown any number of times, just saying “oh we don’t care about gender!” is simultaneously bullshit and involves deliberately ignoring the fact that many groups of people do not start out on an equal basis.

          • Populuxe1 6.2.2.1.1

            Then why privilege gender over other intersectionality?

            • QoT 6.2.2.1.1.1

              Who’s doing that?

              • Populuxe1

                To put it another way, the remit didn’t seem to address anything beyond gender balance and therefore is surely going to set up further disparities. Would the remit benefit Maori, Pacific Island, Asian, Queer and Transgender women particularly, or would a whole bunch of other unspoken biases kick in and mean that there is simply going to be more white-or-off-white, heterosexual, cis-gendered female MPs in Labour?

                • QoT

                  You know what’s really cute about this comment? If you actually look at all the rule changes being proposed, of which women-only lists is one, and the current Labour Party rules, they cover a whole raft of marginalized groups! The NZ Council is actually mandated to take into consideration the representation of women, and youth, and queer folk, and people with disabilities.

                  There’s also a Maaori-only list which gets considered together with regional lists when the party list is drawn up.

                  Your complaint is such a classic: if we do something which targets ONE form of oppression, we’re really the villains because we’re not targeting EVERY SINGLE form of oppression.

                  It totally works if you only look at a single example from a whole raft of policy proposals. But that doesn’t stop the raft being there.

                  • Populuxe1

                    No, I’m just asking why it’s so piecemeal rather than, say, Labour making it an official part of their mandate to be more representative across the board. I just want my slice of the cake because today I’m wearing my Opressed LGBT Low Income hat and not my Evil White Male Opressor hat.

                    • QoT

                      As I just explained to you, there are ALREADY provisions in place, some of which are being modified by this set of rule changes, to do exactly what you’re complaining they’re not doing.

                      And this is why everyone thinks you’re an insincere little troll.

                    • JK

                      Its not piecemeal, Populux. Do as QoT suggests and go read the whole piece – its easy to find on Scoop NZ – and you’ll see how it all fits together.

                    • handle

                      For most of those other under-represented groups, balance can be achieved through List selection processes (which is not to say that it is done).

                      For a group that is 51% of the population, the Electorate selection process also counts.

        • felix 6.2.2.2

          “a demonstrable benefit beyond making people feel better”

          “The government is not here to make your life better.” -David Bennett MP

  7. just saying 7

    I’ve been reading this debate on this and other sites with interest.
    One thing that really infuriates me is the idea that those who have been falling over themselves to argue against or even deride this proposal and feminism in general, are doing so because they are so concerned about the plight of the working class.

    Give me a break

    Even before this conversation I’ve said that Pagani, Shearer, Jones, and (Mike) Williams, should have the honesty to join the National Party, because of their centre-right politics.
    Imo these “working class heroes” are in fact the natural enemy of the working class, they advocate ‘austerity’ – squeezing those worst off to continue to keep the comfortably middle class from experiencing the slightest twinge from the recession that is blighting lives of the poor. They advocate moving Labour even further to the right.

    And what do political types like these offer the working class to solicit our votes? Their lies about caring about us and their divide and rule scare tactics which pitch one section of the disadvantaged against others.

    I can’t even find words to describe the disgust I feel towards them, and the whole light blue bullshitter’s brigade who masquerade as left-wing to keep themselves in their champagne lifestyles. They spit in our faces, and expect us to be grateful for the free fluid. When they read comments like these they beat their chests and bleat about their oppression, and being picked-on without the slightest glimmer of irony.

    Bryce Edwards, as an academic I think it’s time you stopped skimming the various media (including the Standard) to seek confirmation of your pet theories and started actually listening.

    • Pasupial 7.1

      @ JS

      “They spit in our faces, and expect us to be grateful for the free fluid.”

      I think that’s what is called the trickle down theory. It only looks like champagne though; the bubbles coming from spittle foam, and the aroma of urea pointing to the original source.

    • QoT 7.2

      + everything.

      It’s just my own view, but I cannot stomach people who claim to care about the working class and then shit on beneficiaries. As though unemployment isn’t a capitalist tool of oppression. As though pitting the “deserving poor” against “bludgers” isn’t a rightwing distraction tactic. As though modern capitalism doesn’t keep workers in line with the threat of casting them onto the scrapheap.

    • weka 7.3

      +1 Very well said js.

    • Rogue Trooper 7.4

      Yep. and if it’s good enough for Colin James, it’s fine by me too. (although, noted some realities on the Queen’s thread).

    • Saarbo 7.5

      +1 Spot on.

  8. RedBaronCV 8

    Does the Labour party not realise how many women voted for it? Shane Jone’s comments were way out of line and will have cost a heap of votes right across the board . Likewise the old cloth cap union “us and them” brigade – think Chris Trotter aren’t doing labour any favours. They are holding back the prospect of modern unions who would be better treating their workplace as a defacto co-op going for ethical workplaces and shared gains

    The Green party are at least walking the talk in that they have large numbers of women and they are spread over all portfolio’s not just welfare ones. Meretai has to be the strongest female voice in politics at the moment.

    And yes I agree with Karol. The emphasis has all been on women and work and the complete lack of understanding about the effects both social and economic of caring on their lives and this is from both sexes.
    There has been a couple of small items in the papers lately, one on a carer who looked after a Downs syndrome adult and the grossly insensitive government emails about her “dragging him around like a teddy bear”. What did they expect, that she should leave him home alone- not possible, hire supervision – no money. Also she was 70, she won’t be doing this much longer and deserved to be treated with far more respect than she was.
    The other a woman who had paid the correct rent and who was caring for a number of other people whilst working.

  9. handle 9

    “This is not the way for a left wing party of the 21st century, to court the men and women who make up the low income electorate”

    Is that what Labour are trying to do?

  10. Santi 10

    If Labour could draw more capable women then they would be on the list and winning electorate selections. Promoting women over men for the sake of equality is simply dumb let alone dumb politics. But hey, knock yourselves out Labour.

  11. Lanthanide 11

    How would Helen have handled this, if she were leader, vis a vis what Shearer did?

    • felix 11.1

      Helen Kelly?

    • QoT 11.2

      I think it’s too complex to say – for a start, I don’t recall Clark having the same issues of division between her “faction” in the party and the wider membership, which for me is a huge part of the problem with Shearer’s response.

  12. felix 12

    What did Jones say? I missed that.

    Actually I don’t care, he’s just a corporate tool with a big mouth that’s usually full of shit

    The sooner he fucks off the better.

    • weka 12.1

      Something about how he doesn’t want to be in a party run by geldings (it’s unclear if the geldings are the men or the women).

      Edit: correction, he says that the public doesn’t want the country run by geldings.

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10895113

      • felix 12.1.1

        What a vile little person he is.

      • Roy 12.1.2

        Not sure why he considers ‘gelding’ an insult. Phar Lap was a gelding. So was Cardigan Bay. Geldings are more reliable than stallions, and run faster too. Besides that I was informed on another thread of The Standard that women in politics are ‘frigid’ so it surely can’t hurt if the male politicians are eunuchs.

  13. enixide 13

    Law of unintended consequences will be HUGE with this.
    In the military we have one very set standard for males and females, that way when your boss gives you an order you say AYE AYE Sir/Ma’am and don’t think for a second about their gender – you know in every bone in your body they got their because they are the best person to be there.
    Females in life have enough stuff undermining them without the whole “did you get here just because your female or because you actually deserve to be here” factor added in.
    Do I think it would be nice/ideal to have a 50/50 split male female? Absolutely.
    Do I think we should MANDATE to have this split, bringing in people who are not as good as other people just because they are male or female? Absolutely not.
    There are much better ways to help achieve a closer 50/50 split – encouraging more woman into politics and better programs to help with childcare etc… would be a good start

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 13.1

      Reality check: right now men owe their positions to their gender, but somehow you don’t have a problem with this actual situation.

      Raise the double standard.

      • Macro 13.2.1

        It’s getting better QoT, When I joined the Navy in 74, The WRNZN was a completely separate service. I was secretary to the Officers Policy and Planning Committee which incorporated women into the RNZN, The role of women has expanded hugely since those early days, with women now serving in all branches of the seagoing Navy, watchkeepers, supply and secretariat, engineering, warfare. etc. It takes time, It’s 8 years of training to produce a watchkeeping officer, and that’s really just the beginning of a naval career. Women have served in the RNZN up to the rank of Commodore. There is normally only one Admiral at any one time, and exclusively a Seaman. (The deliberations we had over that terminology “seaman” went on for hours. In the end the women decided that they would take the traditional terminology rather than adopt “sailor” which is more gender neutral.)
        Of course there are those “fuckwits” in any part of life who see it as their primary role in life to abuse women. It will take time, it was never going to be easy, and we still need to work positively at it. But I don’t think the time is far off when we will see a much more major role played by women in the Armed forces than we do today. And as I say, it is now streets ahead of what it was 30 years ago.

        • QoT 13.2.1.1

          Hey, I have no disagreement there. We’re in an age where the Australian Chief of Army can make incredibly powerful statements about the value of women in the military.

          But to act as enixide does (in a comment they have copied-pasted into multiple threads) and pretend that everything’s a gender-neutral paradise in our military or any other? Is just silly.

          • Macro 13.2.1.1.1

            Yes totally agree QoT And obviously the reason for Lieutenant General David Morrison to make that no holds barred statement. Make no mistake what he expressed is also the attitude within the NZ Armed Forces as well (or was when I was serving). But as I also noted, there are those fuckwits whose Neanderthal behaviour lets everybody down.
            ps I wasn’t aware that that was a ‘spam’ comment by enixide.

            • QoT 13.2.1.1.1.1

              I recognised it from Morgan Godfery’s post on TDB and also my own.

            • grumpy 13.2.1.1.1.2

              General Morrison’s speech was written by his speechwriter. A trans sexual Colonel. I suppose that says heaps about the tolerance of the Aussie army.

    • Rogue Trooper 13.3

      ‘got those hup, two, three, four, Occupation G.I Blues

  14. Don't worry be happy 14

    Good Lord, if there’s anyone in need of a good gelding it’s that idiot Jones!

    In the horse world he wouldn’t have made it past his 2nd birthday entire (Talent? No. Performance ? No. Potential? Are you kidding me?!)

    In fact, if we stick with his metaphor, most of the Labour caucus, far from being stallions ( the idea would make your eyes bleed frankly) would be in a can of Jellymeat by now…and good bloody riddance to them.

    Look:

    800,000 eligible voters didn’t bother voting last election. These people are not ‘in the centre’..they’ve wandered off in disgust and despair.

    The National/ACT/Maori party government is a shell company for national and international corporate raiders.

    They are about to unleash a weapon of mass surveillence on their own people.

    200,000 children live in poverty in this land of plenty.

    Our second largest city is still in ruins.

    Only Ireland, in the OECD, exports more of its people than we do…a city the size of Rotorua leaves every year to find work and decent pay.

    Corruption doesn’t even bother to try to hide anymore.

    And still Labour saves all of its ammunition for its own feet.

    Well it’s been hijacked by the far right before (Roger Douglas et al, many of whom are still there…) these ‘centrist’ MPs, these ‘non geldings’ (sweet Jesus) they’re like liquifaction or a borer infestation and the Labour Party is sinking/rotten/uninhabitable as a result.

    Why would women want to be part of this dysfunctional, shameful, deviant sham of a political party?

    We have too much sense.

    Go Mana. Go Green. Get that 800,000 off their arses. Take back our country for our children and their children after them.

    • weka 14.1

      :-D

      The Labour dude on Q and A today, when talking about the ‘manban’ and who were the real people (yes he used the word real) that Labour should be attracting… the first people he named were business people.

      • JK 14.1.1

        Really ? Weka ? Whoever it was speaking for Labour on Q & A today – did he really say Labour should be attracting business people. OMG ! This is Roger Douglas all over again !

    • Rogue Trooper 14.2

      :-D

    • Murray Olsen 14.3

      Tautoko, dwbh.

  15. Tiger Mountain 15

    I will repost too. Agree with QOT, but, but… tactically the Labour strategists, if you gifted them a brain it would be lonely. And that is the thing, who is the main parliamentary political enemy at the moment? Identity politics and curly light bulbs do not entrance dickhead kiwis who are the ones that actually vote. The Torys have to be kicked out and then we move on from there. “Man Ban” does not help in the short term despite the legitimacy of the argument.

    Incremental reforms do happen like “marriage equality” And 4 weeks ann leave. These reforms often erode under a change of government.

    The ShonKey/ACT/MP/Dunnie govt. while weakened remains in office and a myriad of reasons shows it should not be. So the priority is to discard them and the current LP tacticians if you can call them that are not helping.

    • QoT 15.1

      dickhead kiwis who are the ones that actually vote

      Well, if you ignore the steadily rising vote share the Greens get, sure.

      • Tiger Mountain 15.1.1

        Heh, fair enough, QoT it is not totally about LP but they are a sizeable part of things in the MMP environment. And Green has long had a Blue/Green turquoise element.

    • Te Reo Putake 15.2

      Yep, the communication strategy used by the LP leadership is truly amateur, TM. I had a slightly heated discussion with an MP recently on the topic of why the media team need replacing ASAP and got told that social media was of interest only to the beltway. It had no effect on the voting public apparently. I have a feeling the next few weeks polling may give the lie to that view.

      Labour need to democratise their media output, put some trust in what their members tell them and go on the front foot, digitally speaking. They need to innoculate against the obvious responses to policy or party matters, such as ‘man ban’, by framing the issues, setting the agenda and anticipating the the other side’s comebacks. They don’t have to be Malcolm Tucker to get this stuff right, but they do need to at least show they understand how the game is played this century.

      • JK 15.2.1

        “I had a slightly heated discussion with an MP recently on the topic of why the media team need replacing ASAP and got told that social media was of interest only to the beltway. It had no effect on the voting public apparently.”………..

        That’s really interesting TRP – its totally the opposite to what Labour candidates were told during the last campaign, and also during more recent conference workshops ie they were told that social media was the way to get to the voters !

        Sounds like Labour MPs don’t know much about nuthin’ these days let alone how to deal with the media.

    • Sosoo 15.3

      Yep. The time for this is when in government and high in the polls. Right now it’s poison.

  16. weka 16

    Sean Plunket “What do you think of Labour’s Girl Club policy?”

    https://twitter.com/SeanPlunket/status/352890084762193920

  17. Tiresias 17

    An interesting and informative article on exactly this point in today’s Guardian:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/jul/07/women-politics-gender-vote-parliament

    I’m male but the hee-hawing, chest-thumping, urine-spraying displays that pass for debate in Parliament pursuade me that I wouldn’t want to be within a mile of the place for any reason..

    • Rogue Trooper 17.1

      a good friend conveyed the same sentiment to me this morning, pre-coital alignment.

  18. red blooded 18

    As one of the 51%, and still proud of the word feminist (which seems too often to be used as code for man-hater, but not by those of us who identify with it) I think it’s great to see Labour confronting the issue of chronic under-representation of women in parliament. Yes, I know they are not as bad as others, in particular those who are throwing bricks at present, but even in the Labour Party 49% of the population make up 58% of the caucus.

    Having said that, I don’t think the proposal that’s on the table at present is particularly practical. Put simply, it seems very unlikely to me that any electorate committee that is infused with the kind of patriarchal attitudes and assumptions about the capabilities of women vs men that were raised in a previous posting (sorry, don’t remember your name, but I’m talking about the “What if she wants to have children?”, “Has missed a few meetings”, “Not quite as forceful” doubts that were discussed further up the line) would be self-aware enough and/or committed enough to the cause of gender equity to actually self-nominate and specify that they were only interested in female candidates.

    It could be that I don’t appreciate the subtleties of the policy, but from this distance anyway it seems to have a bit of a logical black hole in the middle of it.

    • karol 18.1

      I think the idea suggested by Judy McGregor, of mentoring potential women candidates is a good one. However, I think they should be looking outside the beltway (too many MPs generally are ex-LP staffers. And maybe the mentors shouldn’t just be sitting MPs – ex MPs, people who have had other roles in the party, etc.

  19. amirite 19

    The voting public doesn’t give a shit whether Labour has 41 per cent women MPs or 50 per cent. They just want good candidates and good policies.

    • Macro 19.1

      You of course have surveyed the voting public, and speak with authority on the matter.
      You aren’t just speaking for yourself…..

      • amirite 19.1.1

        Continue on this path and the Nats will have the 2014 election in the bag. Is that what the voting public want, according to your own research?

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 19.1.1.1

          Translation: “I don’t like this discussion proposal, waah waah waah.”

          • Colonial Viper 19.1.1.1.1

            14 women in the current Labour caucus. Will there even be 14 in the next one, whether or not this proposal becomes constitutional?

        • weka 19.1.1.2

          “Continue on this path and the Nats will have the 2014 election in the bag”

          Labour is quite capable of losing the election without blaming it on gender equity policies.

          • Winston Smith 19.1.1.2.1

            One of the sayings I wish had come up with…

            • fender 19.1.1.2.1.1

              You would need original thought for that, and evidence shows you are just a regurgitator of Tory garbage.

        • karol 19.1.1.3

          Which is it, amirite?

          Do Kiwis want “good” MPs? (Though it depends what you mean by “good”.)

          Or do we go for a change of government, no matter how incompetent the MPs/candidates/party, or how much the new government’s principles and policies are lacking?

          Or how misogynist, male dominated and/or sexist?

          • amirite 19.1.1.3.1

            How is 41 percent of women in the Party sexist? especially in comparing to the Nats. Sure, it could always be better but is it really a priority issue right now? Why haven’t they come up with policies that help women in everyday life? Like more support for solo mothers on benefits/in part time work, equal pay for the same job, longer paid parental leave, etc etc etc…Not this, not at this time.
            In politics, everything is about perception and timing. Labour failed on both counts here.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 19.1.1.3.1.1

              Agree with your last two sentences completely.

              That said, has little to do with the merits of a quota system, nor of the merits of this particular approach to reinforce a quota system, nor of the need for the Labour Party to debate such issues.

            • karol 19.1.1.3.1.2

              amirite, did you read my post?

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    Labour | 21-08
  • Inquiry into SIS disclosures the right decision
    Labour MP Phil Goff says the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has done the right thing by launching an inquiry into the disclosure of SIS documents about a meeting between himself and the agency’s former director-general. “This inquiry is necessary...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Labour – supporting and valuing carers and the cared for
    Placing real value on our elderly and the people who care for them will be a priority for a Labour Government, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. Releasing Labour’s Senior Citizens policy today David Cunliffe promised that a Labour Government would...
    Labour | 20-08
  • By Hoki! It’s Labour’s fisheries policy
    A Labour Government will protect the iconic Kiwi tradition of fishing by improving access to the coast, protecting the rights of recreational fishers and reviewing snapper restrictions, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Catching a fish from the rocks, beach...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Mighty River – Mighty Profits – Mighty hard to swallow
    Mighty River Power’s profit increase of 84 per cent is simply outrageous, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “Demand for electricity is flat or declining yet the company has made enormous profits. It is the latest power company to celebrate...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Collins’ actions were wrong, not unwise
    John Key’s moral compass remains off-kilter as he cannot bring himself to declare Judith Collins’ actions outright wrong, not simply ‘unwise’, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “Under pressure John Key is finally shifting his stance but his failure to condemn...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Public servants behaving with more integrity than their masters
    The State Services Commission's new report on the integrity of our state services reflects the yawning gap between the behaviour of public servants and that of their political masters, Labour's State Services spokesperson Maryan Street says. “This report, which surveyed...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Phil Twyford Speech to NZCID
    "Labour's plan to build more and build better: how new approaches to housing, transport and urban development will deliver cities that work" Phil Twyford, Labour Party spokesperson on housing, transport, Auckland issues, and cities.  ...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Labour commits to independent Foreign Affairs and Trade
    “Labour is committed to New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs and Trade policy being independent and proactive, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “We are a small but respected country. Our voice and actions count in international affairs. Labour will take a...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Key must sack Collins over abhorrent actions
    The latest revelations that Judith Collins sent the contact details of a public servant to WhaleOil in a desperate attempt to divert media attention from a bad story is abhorrent, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key and Judith Collins...
    Labour | 19-08
  • It’s downhill from here under National
    The forecast drop in exports and predicted halving of growth shows that it’s downhill from here with National, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Growth under this Government peaked in June and halves to two per cent in coming years....
    Labour | 19-08
  • John Key loses moral compass over Collins
    John Key has lost his moral compass over Judith Collins’ involvement with Cameron Slater and lost touch with New Zealanders’ sense of right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Whoever is Prime Minister there are expectations they will not...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Mana Movement General Election 2014 List confirmed
    The MANA List is now confirmed with all the candidates as below (the numbers are the respective Internet MANA rankings). Candidate, Electorate, Internet MANA List Position Hone Harawira, Te Tai Tokerau (1) Annette Sykes, Waiariki (3) John Minto, Mt Roskill (4) Te Hamua Nikora, Ikaroa-Rawhiti...
    Mana | 18-08
  • PREFU likely to confirm dropping exports
    National’s economic management will be put under the spotlight in tomorrow’s PREFU given clear signs the so-called rock star economy has fallen off the stage, with plummeting prices for raw commodity exports, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Under National,...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Record profits while Kiwis face a cold winter
    The record profits by two of New Zealand’s largest electricity companies will be a bitter pill for New Zealand households who are paying record amounts for their power, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “No doubt the Key government will...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time for John Key to answer yes or no questions
    John Key’s train-wreck interview on Morning Report shows he is no longer capable of a simple yes or no answer and has lost touch with what’s right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key has become so media...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Key must clarify who signed out SIS OIA
    Yet again John Key is proving incapable of answering a simple question on an extremely important issue – this time who signed off Cameron Slater’s fast-tracked SIS OIA request on Phil Goff, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “John Key’s claim...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time to invest in our tertiary education system
    A Labour Government will fully review the student support system – including allowances, loans, accommodation support and scholarships – with a view to increasing access and making the system fair, transparent and sustainable, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street says....
    Labour | 17-08
  • Labour will facilitate regional Māori economic development agencies
    The next Labour Government will facilitate the creation of regional Māori economic development groups lead by iwi and hapū to work in partnership with business and public agencies as part of its Māori Development policy. “Labour is committed to working towards...
    Labour | 16-08
  • PRIME MINISTER’S DENIAL AT ODDS WITH NATIONAL PARTY STATEMENT
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has today released an email from the General Manager of the National Party that directly contradicts recent statements from the Prime Minister in relation to the 2011 breaches of Labour Party website databases. In his stand-up...
    Labour | 16-08
  • Labour committed to a healthier NZ for all
    A Labour Government will shift the focus of the health system from narrow targets and short term thinking to make public health and prevention a priority, Labour’s health spokesperson Annette King says. Releasing Labour’s full Health policy today she said...
    Labour | 15-08
  • Time Key took responsibility for Collins
    It is well past time for John Key to take some responsibility for the misuse of power and information by his Minister Judith Collins, and follow through on his last warning to her, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “The evidence released...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Dear John, time to answer a few questions… – Harawira
    “When Cameron Slater says about Kim Dotcom ‘I have lots on him…death by a thousand cuts…wait till you see what comes out in coming weeks on that fat c***t’, you have to ask whether this is the same Cameron Slater...
    Mana | 14-08
  • MANA CANDIDATE FOR IKAROA RAWHITI OPENS UP ABOUT SUICIDE
    “This week suicide has claimed yet more lives in whanau and communities in Ikaroa Rawhiti, and my heart goes out to those who are dealing with such a tragic loss”, says MANA candidate for Te Ikaroa Rawhiti, Te Hamua Nikora....
    Mana | 14-08
  • Offshore betting in Labour’s sights
    A Labour Government will clamp down on offshore gambling websites that deprive the local racing industry of funds, Labour’s Racing spokesperson Ross Robertson says. Releasing Labour’s racing policy today, he said betting on offshore websites is a major threat to...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Key has serious questions to answer on Dirty Politics
    John Key must answer the serious questions raised in Nicky Hager’s new book which reveal examples of dirty politics that New Zealanders will be deeply concerned about, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Many people will be disturbed by the evidence...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Creating an inclusive society for disabled people
    A Labour Government will provide free annual health checks for people with an intellectual disability, Labour’s Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth Dyson said today in announcing Labour’s Disability Issues policy. “We will also employ another 100 additional special education teachers and...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Media Advisory – MANA name change
    This is to advise all media that on the 24th of July the ‘Mana’ party name was officially changed to ‘MANA Movement’ under the Electoral Act 1993.  The inclusion of the word ‘Movement’ in our name shouldn’t come as a surprise...
    Mana | 13-08
  • New Zealand must help in the growing Iraq crisis
    The humanitarian crisis in Iraq looks certain to get worse before it gets better,” said David Shearer Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealand should urgently pledge increased humanitarian assistance to United Nations agencies and NGOs present on the ground....
    Labour | 13-08
  • Allegations of migrant worker rort should be investigated
    Labour is calling for an investigation into the alleged exploitation of workers at Hutt Railway workshops, hired to repair asbestos-riddled DL locomotives. Hutt South Labour MP Trevor Mallard has written to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment asking that...
    Labour | 13-08
  • Medical and dentistry students get reprieve under Labour
    A Labour Government will restore the right of medical and dentistry students to get student loans after seven years of study because it is the right thing to do, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street says. “Hard on the heels...
    Labour | 13-08
  • National must stop meddling with ACC before the election
    The redesign currently occurring at the Accident Claims Corporation (ACC) for sensitive claims needs to be put on hold immediately, said the Green Party today.The Green Party is concerned about work currently underway at ACC involving the sensitive claims service...
    Greens | 13-08
  • Markets slow but first home buyers still hurting
    First home buyers are hurting more than ever as the supply of affordable houses in the market dries up, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank will be happy LVR minimum deposits and rising interest rates have dampened...
    Labour | 13-08
  • Green Party celebrates MOU win on contaminated sites
    The Green Party is celebrating the announcement of a national register of contaminated sites today, and $2.5 million to start cleaning two sites up. The Green Party and the National Party agreed to include toxic site management work in their...
    Greens | 13-08
  • Emergency staff at breaking point
    The Southern DHB is so cash-strapped it is failing to fill nursing rosters, Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson David Clark says.  “Every day emergency department nurses arrive at work knowing they are likely to be carrying more than their recommended workload. ...
    Labour | 12-08
  • ACC minister fails in mission to change culture
    The latest damning report by the Auditor General shows that the ACC Minister has failed to fulfil her mission to fix the sick culture at ACC and real change will not come till a new Government is elected, the Green...
    Greens | 12-08
  • Labour’s regional development fund to support Palmerston North
    Labour will consider a proposal to develop an inland port at Palmerston North, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “The Palmerston North community has developed plans for an inland port which will bring jobs and economic growth to a region which...
    Labour | 12-08
  • Green Party announces priorities for Christchurch
    The Green Party has today announced its plan for a fairer, smarter and more democratic Canterbury rebuild, with a focus on smart transport solutions, restoring local democracy, and keeping Christchurch's assets.The plan sits across all of the Green Party's priorities...
    Greens | 11-08
  • Rock-star economy unplugged by China log jam
    The collapse of log prices due to oversupply in China threatens to wash the gloss off what remains of National's so-called rock-star economy, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Already this year the price of milk solids has plunged by more...
    Labour | 11-08
  • Young job seekers dealt a poor hand
    National's "keep 'em poor" card for young people on a benefit is a sorry substitute for job training, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Sue Moroney says.  The Government today announced it would extend its payment card scheme to all teen parents...
    Labour | 11-08
  • Labour – achieving change for Kiwi women
    Working towards being a world leader in eliminating violence against women and children will be a priority for a Labour Government. Releasing Labour’s Women’s Affairs policy today spokesperson Carol Beaumont said while Labour had a proud track record of achieving...
    Labour | 11-08
  • A Matter of Whether John Key is Credible
    Headline: A Matter of Whether John Key is Credible Analysis by Selwyn Manning. Prime Minister, John Key.WITHIN NATIONAL’S STRATEGY TEAM there is an acceptance that the facts revealed in the book, Dirty Politics, is chewing away at the party’s popular...
    The Daily Blog | 23-08
  • TDB Political Diary for 2014 Election
    Here are the political events TDB will be covering this election. I will be live tweeting these events and  blog reviews will follow the next day. Internet MANA launch – August – Sunday 24th – 1pm, Western Springs School Green...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • One man’s struggle to find a copy of Dirty Politics
    I’m typing this on top of Dirty Politics.  I got the last copy yesterday morning at the local branch of a chain bookshop.  I was really in to get the paper.  I know it sold out – everyone knows - but the first thing...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • From Tucker to Key – while you were out
      From Tucker to Key – while you were out...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Amnesty International – Justice is not Blind in Ferguson
    When a US cop pulls a gun on an unarmed man, he could be acting upon a series of impulses that have been formed since before he or she could talk. What does that police officer see in front of...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Putting an end to zero-hour contracts in 2015
    All around the world attention is being drawn to what have been dubbed in the UK “zero-hour contracts”. These are contracts that don’t have any guaranteed hours even though the worker may be regularly employed. Unite Union has been struggling...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • NZ’s Foreign Aid: The Party Policies Compared
    For the past two elections, I’ve cast my vote based on a single question, which party promises to give the most money in foreign aid? I grant that this is a fairly narrow and simplistic lens through which to judge...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Steering By The Real: Chris Trotter responds to Paul Buchanan
    WHEN ACADEMICS take to blogging the rest of us best be careful. And when they offer comment on the subject of dirty politics we should all pay attention. I will always remember my history lecturer, Dr Michael Cullen’s, confident dismissal...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Interview Between Selwyn Manning & Sean Plunket Over SIS Release of OIA...
    During a RadioLive interview between host Sean Plunket and managing director of Multimedia Investments Ltd, journalist Selwyn Manning, a fiery exchange developed after Plunket attempted to “wet flannel” the issue of whether the Prime Minister has been truthful over what...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • “Even though my hours are being cut, my rent doesn’t get cut to compens...
    Fast Food = Slow Pay   Lola is a manager at a major fast food chain. Last year her employer arbitrarily cut her hours from 32 hours to anywhere between 18 and 26 hours each week. “I said I can’t...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Hate Politics has no place in NZ Politics
    I wasn’t going to write about Nicky Hagar’s ‘Dirty Politics’.  There are plenty of policy issues to discuss. Then I read the book, and what it reveals strikes at the very heart of our democracy. My overwhelming feeling is one...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Pak’nSave pull adverts from Whaleoil
    Pak n Save have replied to complaints that their adverts were appearing on hate speech site Whaleoil by deciding to block their adverts from appearing on the site. Their reply… Congratulations for Pak’NSave on making this type of ethical stand. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Herald Poll – Why the Greens will hit 15%
    The biggest problem for John Key is that there are swathes of National Party voters who are educated and decent people whom will be forced to read Dirty Politics out of intellectual curiosity and will be horrified by what National...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Dirty Politics and Dirty Media
    The Nicky Hager book is mind blowing on so many levels. The revelations of government ministers and their staff colluding with vile and hateful schemers to attack other people, is truly ugly. When the dust settles on the illegalities, immoralities...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • “You just have to keep on fighting” – an interview with Metiria Turei
    We’re meeting in her office. It’s austere, though she does have a nice teapot. The view is startling. One can map the Bowen Triangle, though the teapot is still more interesting. A group of pink faced men are running across...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Taxation and Real Estate – turning housing debate on its head
    The debate about property prices in New Zealand is disingenuous. It is clear that there is a global process in which speculators are using massive amounts of unspent and borrowed money to blow bubbles in the world’s major asset markets....
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – Faith and politics
    In a week which has seen our collective focus shift to those who see politics as a great game to be manipulated for their own ends, it is timely to reflect on the fact that many people are in fact...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Government’s Own Guidelines Show John Key Would Have Been Informed Of SIS...
    Analysis by Selwyn Manning. INFORMATION THAT I HAVE ACQUIRED, sourced from the State Services Commission, states in black and white the tight guideline requirements that must be followed whenever the SIS informs a Prime Minister of any pending release of...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Simply Not Credible: Dr Tucker’s “clarifications” are only making thi...
    THAT DR WARREN TUCKER, Director of the Security Intelligence Service in 2011, agreed to the release of politically sensitive material – thereby intervening in an on-going contretemps between the leaders of the National and Labour parties – without receiving the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • The Donghua Liu Affair: Evidence of Collusion between the NZ Herald and Imm...
    . 1. Prologue . The Donghua Liu Affair hit  the headlines on 18 June, with allegations that David Cunliffe wrote a letter in 2003,  on  behalf of  business migrant, Donghua Liu. Four days later, on Sunday 22 June, the Herald...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Dear Canon NZ – Malevolence should induce revulsion, it shouldn’t be ce...
    Giovanni Tiso’s analysis on Slater is possibly the best in NZ… It’s been a good week for some of us. A week of feeling vindicated, offeeling galvanised. Where it goes from here will depend on several factors, some of which are largely...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • 5AA Australia: After Dirty Politics Can National Provide Stable Government?
    AS WE ALL KNOW New Zealanders and Australians do not like political parties that are unstable, or can no longer assure us that they are able to provide stable government. And the big question for Kiwis as we prepare to...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • SIS letter means it’s over for Key
    It’s over. I may not agree with all of Phil Goff’s positions, but you can’t question his integrity the way Slater did in Dirty Politics and not be deeply concerned that our Secret Intelligence Agency is being used for political...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • who to vote for in Epsom
    who to vote for in Epsom...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • The Rise and Fall of John Key – who will be the next leader of National P...
    . . It was all set to go: Teamkey would be the cult of personality that would do Stalin, Mao, Reagan, Thatcher, or any of the Nth Korean Kim Dynasty, proud.  National and it’s “Teamkey” propaganda strategy   would cash-in Big Time...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Who said Kiwis couldn’t get a fire in their bellies over an arcane intern...
    An amazing team of activists has taken the campaign on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) to local governments throughout the country. Their latest triumph came last Monday when the Dunedin City Council endorsed a resolution expressing concern about the TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National’s Dangerous Education Agenda Exposed
    Putting aside the dirty politics coming out of the Beehive and the right-wing blogisphere, there are some very strong signals that another term of a National Government would do even more serious damage to the public education system. The Education...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • We can have clean politics and get our democracy back.
    Something is rotten in our politics and it stinks. Dirty politics has sadly become one of the defining features of this election campaign. In the light of recent revelations about the extent of nasty and disingenuous political strategies, it would...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Book burning copies of Hager’s book? The next generation of National Part...
    It seems we are getting the next generation of National Party Dirty Politics now. There are claims the Young Nats in Hamilton are buying up copies of Dirty Politics and burning them. One witness was contacted by the Waikato Times...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National Party Poetry Day Haiku
    Key’s inbox and Cam’s poison most foul, there he blows hoist by own harpoon...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Why Cunliffe will be the next PM
    David Cunliffe will be the next Prime Minister of NZ. Labour’s inclusive and positive TV adverts… …are in stark contrast to National’s team of white people powering away from the rabble of the ‘others’… …the messaging is vital and crucial...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • From smiling assassin to grumpy butcher – on giving Judith Collins a last...
    After #dirtypolitics Key isn’t the smiling assassin, he is the grumpy butcher. When he said Judith had  a ‘last chance’ he meant 1 second after voting closes on 20th September. Key would love nothing more than to cut Collins loose and end...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • If the National Party rowing advert was real….
    If the National Party rowing advert was real there would be more blood in the water. If the National Party rowing advert was real it would be Cameron Slater calling the strokes. If the national Party rowing advert was real,...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Cameron Slater: Zionist and political pundit
    It is hard to know where to start with right-wing blogger Cameron Slater (Whale Oil), especially after the release of Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics. This confirmed everything many of us thought Slater to be: a snivelling pundit who serves...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Bryce Edwards stood down from Herald for election season??? Are the editors...
    I only found this out via twitter last night and I am still in shock. Bryce Edwards, easily the best critical thinker and news analyst the NZ Herald has has been stood down by the NZ Herald ‘for the election...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • So who’s a “conspiracy theorist” now?!
    . . As the media storm over Nicky Hager’s book, “Dirty Politics“,  and allegations over smear campaigns continue to swirl,  National’s spin doctors have given Key, Collins, and other National Party ministers a string of  phrases to use in all...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Momentum shift
    When you are deeply immersed in a local campaign sometimes it can be difficult to see the helicopter view.   I don’t know how accurate the political polls are and have always known that things can change quickly in politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Dear Toby Manhire. Bad call on backing Farrar
    Oh dear. I say this as someone who regards Toby Manhire as one of the smartest journalists/commentators/columnists this country has, and I think Toby has made a terribly dumb call here. Let’s see if Toby is still singing Farrar’s praises...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Radio NZ apologise to me for getting it wrong
    Radio NZ have contacted me, reviewed the claim by their host that I had an advance copy of Nicky Hager’s book and they have concluded they got it wrong, they have called me and apologised and will make a statement...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Reclaim UoA – Students’ Message to Steven Joyce
    Tertiary Education – we’ve been sold a lemon  A group of 30 students attended an event on Tuesday evening about ‘the future of tertiary education’ at which the Minister of Tertiary Education Steven Joyce was slated to speak. As Joyce...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Can someone in the media please ask the PM of NZ to categorically deny any ...
    Now we see the MO of Slater & Co, the setting up, the digging for dirt, the use of staff to dig that dirt, can the Prime Minister of NZ categorically deny any National Party staff worked with Cam Slater...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Panic setting in for National as they realise what’s about to happen
    And the terror starts to set in. I’ve never seen blind panic like this before  and it’s spreading as the enormity of what’s about to happen starts to sink in. Hager’s book is a mere entree, Nicky’s personal ethics wouldn’t...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Hager’s Dirty Politics: what the book ultimately reveals is abuse of powe...
    Guide to the many faces of John Key Nicky’s book is now doing what I suspected it would do, create a shockwave of revulsion. Andrew Geddis over at Pundit Blog sums up this attitude best, and it’s reverberations build with every...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Fancy taking children seriously
    Let’s see why all political parties should pay close attention to the Green Party’s policy for children. First, it is a comprehensive attempt to put children, not ideology, at the heart of family policy. Wow, children at the heart of...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Amnesty International: Dear Azerbaijan, Stop Torture, Love Kiwi Kids
    This is a world where many adults often underestimate Generation Y. Being only a few years out of being a teenager myself, I feel I can make this statement with certainty. However, I have been the Youth Intern at Amnesty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GCSB meetings today in Christchurch 1pm at Uni 7pm at Cathedral
    The 2014 GCSB meetings to discuss the mass surveillance state legislation passed by this Government will be debated in Christchurch today at two different meetings. 1pm at Canterbury University bottom floor James Height Building: Chair: Bomber Bradbury Ruth Dyson – Labour Party...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about
    Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Guide to when Key is lying
    Guide to when Key is lying...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – The State of the Student Nation …or is just Al...
    Students politics are dead and our student media is in terminal decline. The most disappointing thing about university is the politics, or should I say lack of? I was raised with the idea that students held the power.They were the...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Love Lifts Us Up: Thoughts from the Green Party’s campaign launch.
    Author Eleanor Catton wants people to give their party vote to the Greens.Photo by Peter Meecham NO ONE WAS QUITE SURE how he did it. Somehow Bob Harvey had persuaded the owners of the rights to Joe Cocker’s Up Where...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • The Nation Environment Debate with Amy Adams & Russel Norman
    Lisa Owen: Now, this week's campaign debate. As a handful of islands at the bottom of the world, New Zealand is an environmental treasure, and as Kiwis, we're proud of being clean and greenish. But putting that environment to work...
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • The Nation: Debate Between Amy Adams And Russel Norman
    Lisa Owen Hosts an Environment Debate Between National’s Amy Adams And Russel Norman From the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • Travel And Accommodation Determination for MPs Released
    The Remuneration Authority today released its determination covering Members of Parliament New Zealand accommodation, travel services for family members, and travel services for former Prime Ministers and their spouses....
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • Te Kuiti man imprisoned for images of young children
    A Te Kuiti man caught with pictures of children being sexually abused has been sentenced to ten months imprisonment. Sickness beneficiary Daniel James Parry, 35, appeared for sentence in the Tauranga District Court today (Friday) after pleading guilty...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Japan Maritime Training Squadron visit – Open Day, Band
    • The Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force Training Squadron will make port in Auckland from Wednesday 3 September to Saturday 6 September...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • MP Perk Transparency Needed
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming the increase in taxpayer-funded entitlements for MPs and their families published on the legislation website this afternoon . Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Debating the future of Auckland’s housing
    With only weeks until the General Election, Auckland’s mounting housing crisis will be put under the spotlight in an Election Debate hosted by the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of Auckland. The debate’s topic “Market forces...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Let’s sort this out – Human Rights Commission
    A Whangarei woman allegedly censured for greeting customers with Kia ora can get in touch with the Human Rights Commission says Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy. “We really need to resolve these kinds of issues. I had thought that...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Aged Care Association welcomes Labour’s wages policy
    The New Zealand Aged Care Association welcomes the Labour Party’s announcement that if elected, it will raise the minimum wage for aged care workers within its first 100 days in Government....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Honorary doctorate for Secretary-General of the UN
    An Honorary Doctor of Laws degree is to be bestowed on His Excellency Mr Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, by the University of Auckland on Wednesday 3 September, both in recognition of his role as an international statesman...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya
    The New Zealand Bar Association joins the International Bar Association (IBA) and other Law Societies and Bar Associations worldwide over the reported surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya, President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Bob Parker, China State Media and Tibet Forum
    Former Christchurch mayor was signed up to position statement without his knowledge; observed “happiness” in Tibet as Tibetan protesters elsewhere shot by security forces...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • “Walk the talk to reduce the wage gap”
    There’s just a few weeks left to convince the candidates of all political parties that reducing the wage gaps makes good sense....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Digital Currency on the Drawing Board
    Government policies and digital currency ideas and issues will come together at three public workshops next week....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • NZ Cycle Trail welcomes $8 million fund
    Government funding of $8 million to maintain and enhance the Great Rides of New Zealand will help ensure the trails are delivering the best possible visitor experience, says Evan Freshwater, Manager Nga Haerenga The New Zealand Cycle Trail Inc. (NZCT)....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Judges Comments Bonkers – McVicar
    Napier Conservative Party Candidate Garth McVicar is accusing a Judge of forgetting that he is the gate-keeper for the community and not a benevolent caregiver for law breakers. "The comments by this Judge are not just alarming, they're completely...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Oxfam: World must suspend arms sales to protect civilians
    As the New Zealand Government prepares to ratify the global Arms Trade Treaty, and after ceasefire talks collapsed and violence erupted yet again in Gaza yesterday, Oxfam is calling on all states to immediately suspend transfers of arms or ammunition...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Degrees in Picking up Rubbish
    Responding to the Fairfax media report of a University of Otago survey of Wellington’s street-connected walkways, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Another Union row
    “ The teachers union the NZEA is getting ready for another industrial dispute. These disputes now only occur in the government sector. National has no one to blame but themselves” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Whyte: Speech to Grey Power
    National’s failure to increase the age for super and reform health is a threat to every New Zealander’s security....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Local Govt should not go into business
    “No one should take any comfort from the fact that “Infracon”, a roading company in Tararua and Central Hawke's Bay, is to go into liquidation. This puts the future of more than 200 jobs in doubt. ACT sympathises with those...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Join the hikoi to end child poverty in New Zealand
    CPAG is calling on people across society to join a march from Britomart to Aotea Square in Auckland to demand action on child poverty in Aotearoa....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Ngapuhi Chair Says Enough of the Political Sideshow
    Time for side-shows to end so we can focus on future of our nation – Raniera (Sonny) Tau, Chairman, Te Runanga A Iwi O Ngapuhi...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Commissioner of Police v Kim Dotcom And Ors
    An order is made extending the duration of the registration of the restraining orders issued by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on 10 and 25 January 2012 and registered in New Zealand on 18...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Labour Announcement on Future of Hillside Workshops Welcome
    Labour leader David Cunliffe’s announcement in Dunedin today that a government led by his party would re-open Hillside Railway workshops was welcomed by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU). ‘Since the workshops were shut down in late...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Primary teachers and principals vote to put kids first
    Teachers and principals have voted overwhelmingly against the Government’s controversial “Investing in Educational Success” policy, including proposed highly-paid principal and teacher roles....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Prime Time with Sean Plunkett: Educating for Success
    In all the turmoil stirred up by the "Dirty Politics" revelations, the real issues that the campaign should be about have been put to one side....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Dirty Politics – Number One Bestseller and Back in Stores
    An exposé of the hidden side of New Zealand politics, Nicky Hager's book, Dirty Politics , has been in hot demand since its release last Wednesday....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Epsom: profiling NZ’s most controversial electorate
    Welcome to the wealthy inner Auckland electorate of Epsom: home of coat-tailing, the Tea Tapes, a convicted outgoing MP... and heavy newspaper and magazine readership....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Families Free From Violence campaign and website
    We are pleased to announce the launch of our Families Free From Violence campaign and our new Families Free From Violence website. This website has been created to encourage people to take responsibility for ending family violence by seeking help...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • PSA And DHBs Reach Settlement on Five Collective Agreements
    The 20 District Health Boards are pleased to reach settlement via mediation on five Multi Employer Collective Agreements (MECAs) with the Public Service Association for 12,000 mental and public health nurses, allied, public health and technical staff,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Refusal to complete census results in 46 convictions
    Failing to fill out a census form has resulted in the convictions of 46 people, Statistics New Zealand said today....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Council Amalgamations Still Bad Deal
    Northland, Bay of Plenty, and Wellington ratepayers should not be seduced into accepting the amalgamation of their Councils by a recent amendment to legislation allowing for local boards not community boards, Chris Leitch, Democrats for Social Credit...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • DHB industrial action withdrawn
    The Public Service Association (PSA) has withdrawn notices of industrial action covering 12,000 health workers at District Health Boards (DHBs) across New Zealand, after progress was made in mediation....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Aged Care Pledge Needs Better Target, Says Care Agency
    Labour’s pledge to set up an aged care working group to address industry concerns is good to see, but appears to skirt the obvious issue of a looming lack of beds and carers for our rapidly growing elderly population, says...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Social inequality still rife in New Zealand
    Social inequality has worsened over the past decade in New Zealand, a new study from Victoria University of Wellington shows....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Working towards a living wage and more Māori in paid work
    The Māori Party will build on the gains it has already achieved in Government and accelerate job opportunities particularly for young Māori....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Deepwater Group Supports Changes to Catch Limits
    The Deepwater Group says the increase in the Total Allowable Commercial Catch for hoki shows the benefits of a long term commitment to build biomass in this major New Zealand fishery....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Ohariu candidate Sean Fitzpatrick
    “Our Ohariu candidate will be Sean Fitzpatrick. Sean has strong ties to the region and I’m glad to hear he will be doing his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the area,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Tauranga candidate Stuart Pederson
    “Our Tauranga candidate will be Stuart Pedersen. Stuart has strong ties to Tauranga and I’m glad he has agreed to do his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the electorate,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party scores massive own goal
    Green Party scores massive own goal as their own policy auditor criticises their fiscal plan...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party’s own Auditor of their Budget finds it dodgy
    “The Alternative Budget released by the Green's does not even stack up in the eyes of their chosen auditor – Infometrics” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • New shark finning laws fall short for threatened species
    Environmental groups are welcoming some aspects of a raft of law changes announced today in relation to shark finning, but say that overall the chance for New Zealand to catch up with international efforts in shark conservation is being missed....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Promoting Labour’s Positive Policies
    General Secretary of the New Zealand Labour Party, Tim Barnett, today launched Labour’s television advertisements for the 2014 election. The advertisements help tell Labour’s positive story for a better New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Drug Court: Rare Insight into New Alternative Justice Model
    Māori Television’s latest New Zealand documentary presents a fascinating look inside a new alternative justice model – through the stories of convicted criminals....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Political parties pledge to increase overseas aid
    A survey of political parties looking at how much New Zealand should spend on Official Development Assistance (ODA) shows the overwhelming majority of parties are committed to raising the bar according to the Council for International Development (CID)....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Top Kiwis backing Tip the Scales campaign
    Sir Graham Henry, former All Black Kees Meeuws, singer-song writer Jamie McDell and fishing guru Matt Watson have pledged their support to Tip the Scales, a pre-election campaign generating public support for rebuilding New Zealand’s depleted inshore...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Maritime Union continues to press over dirty politics
    Maritime Union National President Garry Parsloe says Ports of Auckland management is trying to get off the hook from its involvement with extreme right wing bloggers during the Ports of Auckland dispute....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • No end in sight to overwhelming human cost of conflict
    Two ceasefires have brought some respite to civilians in Gaza and southern Israel, amid hope that a durable cessation of hostilities might occur. In Gaza, these breaks in the fighting have barely given people enough time to seek medical care,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Young Kiwi speakers to represent NZ at Gallipoli 2015
    The RSA is delighted at the announcement made by Veterans' Affairs Minister Michael Woodhouse today, that all eight regional finalists of the 2015 ANZ RSA Cyril Bassett VC Speech Competition will be included in a group of 25 Youth Ambassadors...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
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