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Anatomy of a lie

Written By: - Date published: 8:51 pm, May 5th, 2011 - 158 comments
Categories: Politics - Tags: , ,

When the news of Hone Harawira’s “support for Osama Bin Laden” broke in the Herald I was suspicious of it – there was no byline on the story and it wasn’t on the front page. Surely such a revelation would be headline news and surely the journo that covered it would want to claim such a cracker story as their own. And why did it take two days between Hone saying it and the Herald picking it up. The whole thing had a sense of a cautious editorial decision.

My gut feeling was there was context missing and that it had the feel of research unit work. Especially as Matthew Hooton has been touting a similar line about Annette Sykes (I asked him about the rumours he’s working for Brash – so far he’s not denied it [Matthew has confirmed he's not working for Brash]).

Then I saw the video. My first impression was Hone was saying we shouldn’t be celebrating a man’s death in his usual roundabout way.

One of our commenters described it this way:

I just watched the clip http://tvnz.co.nz/te-karere/video [it's about two thirds in] – it turns out the full quote was “they [bin laden's family] mourn for a man who fought for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people”.

It seemed to me he was talking about the way Bin Laden’s family would have thought of Bin Laden.

Whatever was going on it was pretty clear that Hone wasn’t backing Bin Laden just as it was clear that the context of what he said had been altered with the removal of a single word: “they”.

That didn’t stop all of those with a vested interest in discrediting Hone (and some of those without one) from having a go including, to his discredit, Trevor Mallard over on red alert.

By the afternoon the story was whipped up into a frenzy. Which surprised me because it seemed patently clear from the video evidence that what people were claiming Hone meant he hadn’t meant at all. Several commenters here and on other blogs who actually watched the Te Karere video said as much.

I suppose that by then there was enough blood in the water that journos who should have known better felt obliged to report on the story with headlines that misrepresented what Hone said. After all, it fits the “loose cannon” narrative they’re all sold on and perhaps they convinced themselves that the perception was more important than the facts (and perhaps it is). Then when it was nice and juicy Key stepped in.

And now Hone has apologised for the way he said what he said. Not for saying he supported Bin laden (because he never did) but because the power of the lie was so great he probably felt he had to.

Unfortunately this will be represented as confirming the lie.

There’s a couple of lessons in this. One is for the Mana party who have learned the hard way how the echo chamber runs and how watchful they will have to be.

The other is for the journalists and the pundits: there will be a lot of this over the next seven months. If you buy into this dirty game like you have with Hone you will be doing yourselves and democracy a huge disservice.

I should note two more things: I’m not a great supporter of Hone, I like the left politics Mana espouses but I’ve had a bit to do with a few of the people in his team (as I’ve had a bit to do with a lot of political operators across the spectrum) and I’m not confident they have what it takes to put any weight into their vision. That they’ve let their guard down like this doesn’t change that.

I’m also disappointed in the opportunism show by Trevor Mallard in this matter. He’s the man running Labour’s campaign and for him to make the fundamental mistake of assuming his enemy’s enemy is his friend is amateur – the right wing echo chamber he threw in with on this will be used against Labour this year and today he helped make it a little more powerful.

In politics you’ve got to take your lumps because life isn’t fair but frankly the whole debacle has left a bad taste in my mouth.

158 comments on “Anatomy of a lie”

  1. Anthony 1

    Even the way the herald and stuff reported the quotes underlined the lie…

    Both papers placed his quotes out of chronological order to create a further perception of support for Bin Laden.

  2. higherstandard 2

    I still think the most bizarre things he’s said is the repeated assertions that Brash is like Hitler, he need to engage his brain before opening the mouth.

    If he wrote and talked about more stuff like this

    http://hone.co.nz/2011/04/20/an-anzac-story-for-all-new-zealanders/

    he might attract less opprobrium.

    • IrishBill 2.1

      Agreed. I think he’s using the Hitler stuff to get coverage but it’s still not the smartest move.

  3. deemac 3

    “not the smartest move”?? it’s offensive! not to Brash of course (he can look after himself) but to Hitler’s victims. In the US or UK Hone would now be toast after that comment.
    All in all, Hone’s foolish behaviour just underlines that the idea that he is cut out to be the leader of a serious political party is a complete non-starter.

    • IrishBill 3.1

      You’re right he’d be a better leader if he was like Don Brash, John Key, Phil Goff, Pita Sharples, Tariana Turia or Peter Dunne.

      Like I said I’m not a supporter of Hone’s but I’m not discounting him from any leadership club that includes this lot.

  4. Scott 4

    People are entitled to take a politician’s words at face value, and most people (on both left and right) were appalled by what Harawira said. He may not have meant what came out of his mouth, but they were the words he chose. Plenty of people on the left were appalled by what he said – not just the usual suspects on the right.

    The fact that Hone continues to have these brain explosions speaks volumes. Even his most ardent supporters must be shaking their heads. Leader of a parliamentary party? God help us all. I am now beginning to have some sympathy for Phil Goff for ruling him out of any deal.

    • felix 4.1

      Do you mean take a politician’s words at face value?

      Or do you mean take the Herald’s paraphrasing and editing of those words at face value?

      Because your comment suggests to me that you don’t realise how different those two things are in this instance.

    • Alwyn 4.2

      The funniest part of Hone’s interview at the weekend was when he was talking about the 90 day bill.
      He claimed that if Don Brash had his way it would become a 60 day bill and then a 30 day bill.
      Funny, but from the left’s pont of view a 60 day instead of 90 period would have to be better and a 30 day period would be better again. Still we can’t expect much in the way of logic from someone who can seriously compare Don Brash with Hitler!

      • Vicky32 4.2.1

        Funny, but from the left’s pont of view a 60 day instead of 90 period would have to be better and a 30 day period would be better again.

        Er, Alwyn, how do you work that out?

         

        • Alwyn 4.2.1.1

          Think about it.
          If you had a 30 day period for a trial you would, if you lasted that long, have the right to claim unfair dismissal if you then lost your job. ie You could only be dismissed in the first 30 days, not the first 90 days.
          In fact you can say that what the Left is really after is a ZERO day bill. I don’t think that Hone got as far as saying that what Don would introduce is a zero day bill but he might have. I can’t really be bothered looking at the whole program again to check.

  5. Terry 5

    I left a comment on Yahoo Xtra, which can be referred to if they published this. I thought Hone’s remarks were clearly not supporting personally the very bad bin Laden. I have always detested bin Laden. But I also believe in the sanctity of every human life (yes, even Muslims – they are human beings too!)
    I am so tired of seeing and hearing 99% American versions of what happened to accompany their indecent smirking and gloating. Justice is essential and good, plain vengeance is another matter. Hone I thought was very discerning and for that matter “pastoral”, all accompanied by his fearless and honest opinion. I do not know what he was apologising for – because he showed himself a caring human being for a man with people who loved him?
    Key’s utterances were typically deplorable.
    By no means do I make the slightest connection, but feel constrained to look at Christ (to vast numbers bin Laden could have been be likened to a Christ-like Saviour). Jesus at least received some semblance of a charge laid against him and a mockery of a trial. Osama bin Laden was murdered (clearly unarmed and passive), without getting to hear any charge laid, he could have been arrested and did not have even that opportunity, and most certainly he was executed without standing trial (even Hussain was permitted these rights).
    The voice of the Islamic world is muted, a common effect of great shock and grief. We will never get the real facts, but mistake not silence for acceptance. Better that they do speak rather than deliver the actions they are sure, in their own time, to take.
    Meanwhile plotting and ordering assassination has not blotted the name of Obama, it has ensured his popularity and victory at the election next year. It appears that he is learning new lessons from George Bush. I greatly disliked bin Laden, but I dislike also the absence of true justice and the nasty gloatings of vengeance which might next be taken on Assange? Hone there a more than a few who stand by you. You gave not a hint that you admired bin Laden for any evil things to his account.

  6. ianmac 6

    Thanks Irish Bill for your post. The twisting of truth was at least sad, and I would have thought that in the name of fair play, there would have been a bit more circumspection in the story. And to think that even many on the Left were gullible! And Trevor. Shame!

  7. So even Ill Duce or Franco or Milosovitch loved their families and did what they thought was right. We don’t have to like these people they were mass murderers.

    I think if more people in NZ took a holiday on the Gaza Strip they would get what Honi is saying.

    He hasn’t said anything offensive, it’s the fascist media trying to paint him black.

    I wish him all the luck, but that’s not going to be enough, he is going to have to be carefull, steer clear from mid-east issues until November election.

  8. Jim in Tokyo 8

    Stuff.co.nz also went back and edited their own story during the day to obscure the fact that they misquoted Harawira.

    Initially they reported that Harawira said we should ‘celebrate Bin Laden’s life’. 336 frenzied comments later, they closed comments then went back and changed the line in question to ‘celebrate life’.

    Throughout, they did not quote Harawira but rather chose to paraphrase him in an intentionally misleading and inflammatory way.

    I guess they figured the average stuff reader wouldn’t actually bother to watch the original Maori Television clip at the top of the page, and by in large they were right.

    • stargazer 8.1

      surely there’s plenty of scope for a press council complaint against both of these papers? as well as other media who have failed to report accurately.

    • Jenny 8.2

      Jim in Tokyo

      Stuff.co.nz also went back and edited their own story during the day to obscure the fact that they misquoted Harawira.

      Jim your observation that Stuff went back to re-edit their lie after the fact is very telling.

      This alteration reminded me so strongly of the work of the ‘Ministry of Truth’, the fictional workplace of the George Orwell character Winston in the famous novel ’1984′.

      Winston’s job at the Ministry of Truth was to go back to old news clippings and “correct” them. This was a fairly involved process meaning the actual hard copy archives had to be accessed and retyped, the original then having to be burnt in furnaces in the basement, of the building.

      George Orwell obviously had not imagined the invention of the internet and the desktop computer where the work of the ‘Ministry of Truth’ could be done electronically with just a few key strokes.

      I have often thought that the novel ’1984′ was written as a warning by Orwell to his fellow journalists.

      I would advise all those involved in this ‘work’ to reread this old novel, and if they are able, hang their heads in shame.

  9. They had this so called death a mouth to late, it should have been on the 1st April, what with all the fools that believe it ffs.
    You are the supposedly most wanted man in the world, living miles away from any recognised helicopter flight paths, then not only do 2 or 3 of them fly to, and then hover over your house, but one crashes and burns in your backyard … then some thugs blow a hole in your wall run up stairs and you are still sitting in or near your bed? Then they take your dead body 800 miles and drop you in the ocean. There must be a beer ad in this?

    • Lanthanide 9.1

      It’s pretty simple, Robert. Either Osama is dead, and in the ocean, or he’s in American custody in a prison cell somewhere. It doesn’t really matter either way.

      He is certainly not alive and free somewhere – he would simply pop up in a new video, and show the US to be huge liars.

      You’re also acting like this was some routine helicopter run and they just took a side trip out to take Osama out on the way, which is frankly, bizarre.

    • Drakula 9.2

      How convenient it is for them to dump Bin Ladin’s body in the ocean, for all we know he could be still alive or he could have died even before the 9/11 attack.

      The CIA definately knew that there was a threat to those towers (Mike Moore) but just sat on the information.

      Wouldn’t that make them just as culpable as Bin Ladin? Maybe this is a subject for a seperate post.

      In the case of Hone’s misquote or blatant lie, the journalist involved should be disciplined, but then again how can they be disciplined if the rot is at a higher level?

      • Colonial Viper 9.2.1

        BTW when you look at footage of the three large World Trade Centre buildings which came down on 9/11, all of them collapsed neatly and vertically on to their ground floor foot prints, minimising damage to nearby buildings.

        That pattern of structural disintegration also happens to be a characteristic of structures destroyed via carefully engineered controlled demolitions.

  10. Samuel Hill 10

    Well said Irish. Been saying this stuff about Harawira too. Mana is a Maori Socialist party, essentially with the same kind of image as a Maori Greens. The more people pick on Mana as to why it needs to be a Maori Party, the more they will find it hard to defend themselves. This is a Maori party trying to come across as a party for more than just Maoris, but will they campaign for General Electorate votes too? They are being attacked by a General electorate media. It isn’t just Maori voters watching you when you go on shows like Close Up. They are only a small party and it is silly for them to try and contest Maori seats and other Electorate seats.

    • felix 10.1

      Samuel,

      The bulk of this post is pretty much saying the exact opposite of what you’ve been saying about Hone today.

      This post is about how a horrible nasty lie has been spread.

      You’ve been helping to spread that lie today Samuel. Only an hour and a half before your comment here, you were busy spreading the lie.

      I’m starting to look sideways at you.

      • Samuel Hill 10.1.1

        Am I not allowed to attack both Mana and ACT? Is there some kind of contradiction in being a centrist?

        I have told you my point of view. You are very defensive about it. I am saying that I don’t care that Osama Bin Laden is dead, he deserves to be hung up for what he did. I don’t care about a trial for people like him. If it had been one of my own family killed on September 11, I would have probably wanted to hunt him down myself, despite my political understanding of Bin Laden’s Jihad on America.

        I have watched the video, and it doesn’t change my opinion, or my senses I get from Hone Harawira. Even if it is the traditional Maori view to say that we should not speak about the dead, or to only remember the good things in life about the dead, I don’t really care about that because MY personal beliefs hold that those things in the context of Osama Bin Laden are wrong. Now if this is Hone using his being Maori to hoax some extreme left wing people into his party, I am a little worried about a guy who puts bait out there like that. He certainly isn’t going to be pulling any centrists. If the leader of the National Party or Labour Party said these kind of things, I would suspect there would be some very interesting phone calls being made from certain countries.

        [lprent: Your opinion is one thing that the site generally doesn't care about. However felix is pulling you up on your assertion of a fact about what Hone actually said. Support it or withdraw it. And read the policy. ]

        • felix 10.1.1.1

          So what?

          What you’ve been doing is misquoting and pretending that Hone said things he never said, and I still haven’t seen you acknowledge that yet.

          Very dishonest behaviour, Samuel.

          • Samuel Hill 10.1.1.1.1

            felix..

            What I did was quote the 3 news story which said that Hone Harawira said we should “honour” Osama Bin Laden. Now I will admit that haven’t found a direct quote of him even using the word honour, but I told you when I posted the story that it wasn’t me adding in the quotation marks. If this is bad behaviour I apologize for that.

            What I have found is a quote from Harawira saying that we should “acknowledge the positive aspects of life” in regard to Osama Bin Laden. That doesn’ change my opinion I already have of Harawira over sevral years watching him on television and in the media.

            [lprent: The short answer is that as far as I can see from the discussion he never said that he 'honoured" him. If you want to repeat your assertion when challenged then you have to substantiate your assertion of fact with a link to something reputable. If you cannot then you will stop repeating it because as far as I'm concerned that would be a flamewar starter (see the policy).

            What you have replied with here is an argument against bad journalism (the point that Irish was making), another quote without a link, and a clearly stated opinion. The latter appears to be the only thing you're expressing. ]

            • felix 10.1.1.1.1.1

              And again, I’m not challenging your opinion. On anything.

              I’m just challenging your repetition of the lie. The one the post is about.

              So opinion away, have a big opinion party and invite all your opinions around for some opinion pie if you like. BUT when you use proven lies and pretend that they’re facts to give weight to your opinions, people are likely to point that out.

            • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1.1.2

              What I did was quote the 3 news story which said that Hone Harawira said we should “honour” Osama Bin Laden.

              Perpetrating someone else’s lie is still lying.

              Defending yourself doing that takes it one step further.

            • Samuel Hill 10.1.1.1.1.3

              Here is the 3 News link from the original story I quoted.

              http://www.3news.co.nz/Hone-Harawira-Bin-Laden-fought-for-freedom/tabid/419/articleID/209839/Default.aspx

              I have already apologised for using what appears to be a misquote. I can’t find any footage of Harawira using the word “honoured”.

              Here is another quote though, and for all you people silly enough to think that I am an ACT Troll, the location of the link should cause you some delight:

              From the NBR:

              http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/bin-laden-freedom-fighter-harawira-nn-92331

              “We have heard nothing but negative things about him from the Americans, but he fought for the self-determination of his people and for his beliefs,” Mr Harawira said.

              “Indeed despite what the media has said, his family, his tribe, his people are in mourning. They mourn for the man who fought for the rights, the lands and the freedom of his people. We should not damn them in death but acknowledge the positive aspects of life.”

              I don’t agree with these comments. I don’t think Osama Bin Laden should be showed any respect, just as I don’t think he should be honoured. This adds to my opinion I already of Hone Harawira. Anyone who makes these kind of comments is either very misguided, or trying to get ignorant people to vote for them. I don’t like that.

              Does that cover everything?

              [lprent: I think that you have mistaken the intent of my warning. If I see another instance of you squirming and bullshitting when pulled up on a statement of fact, you'll earn a ban. I really don't care about your excuses or who are. I expect people commenting here to comply when warned, or offer an explanation about why they were doing what they did, or leave - not excuses. If I have to expend to much time moderating then I will ban for that as well.

              Moderators opinion about what is acceptable behavior counts here. Your opinion (or anyone elses) about what is acceptable behavior is just irrelevant waffle. Does that clarify things for you? ]

              • Samuel Hill

                So what, I can’t even debate? I think you already have your opinion made up that you don’t like what I have to say. Squirming and bullshitting? Wow. I didn’t realise coming to an understanding with somebody else as to what their problem with what I had to say was squirming and bullshitting. I completely accept that I made an error and apologised. But now that I pull out some information that supports my feelings on the BIG PICTURE, I get threatened with a ban?

                I guess if I said fuck the police or wanted to have a tangi for Osama Bin Laden it would be fine though?

                • Colonial Viper

                  Interesting you think that you “perpetrating lies” = “debate”. Definitely reckon you are a NACT supporter tasked with undermining Hone.

                • Samuel Hill

                  What I’m essentially being told now is that I am not allowed to partake in the debate even after retracting statements I made using what I did not know at the time was false information.

                  After reading your comments I made a clearer argument and used links as was requested and will do in the future.

                  But I guess even challenging authority here will probably get me banned. I hope I am wrong.

                  [lprent: Making a clear retraction is required. Trying to divert onto another topic does not constitute a retraction. As you say - state it clearly and I don't have to waste my time as a moderator.

                  Of course challenging 'authority' here will certainly get you banned, because the moderators define what is acceptable behavior here. You will be wasting our time, and that is a cardinal offense. A moments thought will tell you why.

                  Remember the site is manned by volunteers who write posts, moderate, and do all of the scut work that is required to keep the site running. We're doing this in our own time, and the last thing we need is some half-arsed know-it-all chewing up our time by trying to tell us how we should be running our site. We've been running it for nearly 4 years and know exactly what tends to work and what doesn't (as reflected in the rising site stats). One part of that is that moderators don't waste too much time arguing with people who indulge themselves in behavior that gets them a ban.

                  Quite simply we make the rules that are followed because we are the ones doing the work and you are a guest. If you don't like it then go elsewhere or start your own blog. But if you are a guest here then you will follow our less than onerous standards of behavior and don't waste our time on something you can read in the about or the policy. ]

                  • felix

                    Nah, being a dick will probably get you banned.

                    I never saw you retract anything. In fact long after it was patiently explained and carefully shown by way of videos and links that you were repeating lies, you were still doing the same thing but with a slightly altered phrasing.

                    In fact, Samuel, in your comment just above, with the links, you’re still trying to tie Hone to the idea of honouring Bin Laden.

                    Absorb this:

                    I’ve read Samuel’s comments. What sort of disgusting person would hate children? I don’t hate children. It all just adds to my opinion of Samuel Hill.

                    That’s what you’re doing now.

                    Seems like for quite a long time everyone tried to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you were misinformed, but the trouble is that even when you had to have known that, you carried on misinforming.

                    Note: no-one has criticised your ability to express opinions or state facts. But don’t try your bullshit on me Sam.

                    • Samuel Hill

                      Well done, you’re putting two and two together now felix..

                      a)I don’t check this page every 5 minutes, nor the news. When you urged me to watch the videos etc yesterday, I did. And I have admitted several times that I was wrong to quote the TV 3 article.. When are you going to accept that? I will say it again. I WAS WRONG TO USE IT. SORRY.

                      b)You are on the right track as to why I posted the NBR link with the actual quote. I am not using it to show that Harawira REALLY DOES SUPPORT OSAMA. No, I don’t believe that. I used the link to show that Hone was not scathing of Bin Laden, and in his initial answers on Te Karere, I think he was more or less pandering to far-left, anti-US voters.

                      Ofcourse supporting Bin Laden and refusing to vilify him on his death are two completely different things. I do realise that. My point is that I don’t find Harawiras comments were the comments of somebody who I want to be in power in this country. If he had any type of knowledge as to what average kiwis think, he would have realised he was making a mistake with those comments. Thats why he had to apologise.

                      The fact that he HAD TO APOLOGISE over the remarks he made, remarks I think he made not based on his opinion, but on his desire to appeal to voters outside the mainstream, shows to me a lack of class. If he had of just said, “Bin Laden did some terrible things, but I don’t think we should celebrate anybodys death” Then he wouldn’t be in this situation of him having to apologise.

                      Thats all I am saying.

                      Do you understand that? Please tell me you do.

                    • felix

                      But that’s not all you’ve been saying Samuel. See my previous comment.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Samuel Hill doesn’t check The Standard every 5 minutes but has posted here, what dozens of times in the last few days?

                      “Yeah right”.

                      A NACTer tasked with taking Hone down.

                    • higherstandard

                      Jees CV do you really think NACT want Hone to be taken down ?

                      Really ?

                      I’d think their view is that Mana and hone are heaven sent.

                    • Samuel Hill

                      Hahaha. Thats all you’ve got to cling onto isn’t in Colonial Viper?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      No what I have to cling too is frakin hot, babelicious and rich.

                      You’re just a hobby

  11. Rodel 11

    Shame on Trevor. You should just roll over, respect and accept Harawira’s rants. Bullshit!
    No Good for you Trev! Harawaia is your opposition, and a bullshit artist like Brash, Key and Co.

    Get stuck into him and ridicule his nonsense which is as stupid as Brash’s crap, English’s deceit and Keys duplicity.
    The Labour party needs the Mallards of this world. Show a bit of gumption Labour. Then people might vote for you.
    Is this a Mana party website or wot?

  12. Lanthanide 12

    It would be nice for the Johnny-come-lately media to actually investigate the original claim, and then report on that, rather than just copying what other media have said.

    Imagine what it would be like if TV3 ran a story saying “news media biased: Hone doesn’t worship Osama”.

  13. Sanctuary 13

    Another post yesterday here on the Wikileaks cables quoted an American diplomat remarking on our media’s “excessive fondness of political novelty” – a polite way of saying they are feckless and lazy. Given that, how can anyone, least of all Hone Harawira, not have guessed what they would focus on when he made those statements? There is no need for a plot against the left or against Maori. A lazy, ratings driven media is all you need.

    • IrishBill 13.1

      But it’s helped along by some very hardworking and well organised operators on the right (and some stupid mistakes from the likes of Harawira).

  14. PeteG 14

    Why then has Harawira apologised with:

    “Using terror for political reasons is never acceptable. I apologise for how I expressed myself.”

    And on this corrected quote:

    “they [bin laden's family] mourn for a man who fought for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people”

    and “pursued independence for his people, his family and his tribe”.

    There is no indication Hone is in a position to quote on behalf of bin Laden’s family, so this must be his own views on bin Laden as a freedom fighter, as Hone views himself.

    I still agree with Morgan Godfery…

    As I said, Hone does not lack control. This was not a random comment. It was a statement of genuine belief and a foolish one at that. If anything sinks the Mana Party it will be these sorts of deformed views – it will not be lack of discipline and control.

  15. felix 15

    “There is no indication Hone is in a position to quote on behalf of bin Laden’s family”

    Which he didn’t do.

    “so this must be his own views on bin Laden as a freedom fighter, as Hone views himself.

    Except that it’s explicitly not. Duh. Who refers to himself as “they” you moron?

    • PeteG 15.1

      Saying “they mourn” is a presumption, I guess it depends on what members of bin Laden’s family Hone is making the presumption for. Bin Laden has 20 known children with 5 wives. He had 54 known siblings. Difficult to talk for all of them, especially when you don’t know any of them.

      There is no indication that any of bin Laden’s family thought he “fought for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people”. So that must Harawira’s view on it – unless he or you can show otherwise.

      • felix 15.1.1

        I can show otherwise by pointing to the fucking words on the page – it’s quite clearly Hone’s presumption of the Bin Laden family’s views, no argument there.

        Perhaps they’re actually your views Pete. After all I don’t have any proof they’re not.

        • PeteG 15.1.1.1

          So yes, obviously it’s what Harawira thinks, or at least what he wanted to say.
          It is not a known view of anyone from the many in the bin Laden family.

          I didn’t say it and it’s not my view at all, you’re getting a bit desperate.

          • felix 15.1.1.1.1

            Pete you’ve said twice now that because Hone presumes to know what the Bin Laden family are thinking, he must in fact be thinking the same thing he presumes they’re thinking.

            By that “reasoning” (and I do hesitate to call it that) if I say “Pete George blows goats and really, really likes it” does that somehow prove that actually I blow goats and really like it?

            I’d love to hear why you think that’s not the exact same argument you’re using.

            • PeteG 15.1.1.1.1.1

              There’s a major difference.

              You have absolutely no reason to link me with goats, so you either made it up completely or you personally have something with goats.

              I think there is a widespread recognition that Harawira was projecting his own ideas of himself onto the bin Laden family. It is not just me who thinks that. Harawira (or his strategists) seems to have recognised he erred, he has apologised. And I’ll repeat a quote from Morgan Godfer above:

              As I said, Hone does not lack control. This was not a random comment. It was a statement of genuine belief and a foolish one at that.

              • felix

                Doesn’t alter anything.

                Here’s what I’m disputing: You said “So that must [be] Harawira’s view on it

                A statement for which you have no basis whatsoever unless you use my “goats” reasoning.

                Please try again.

                • PeteG

                  It must be his view, he said it, “– unless he or you can show otherwise” – the bit of my statement you have omitted from your quote. Do you think it wasn’t his view?

                  I think you’re being a bit of a goat about your “reasoning”.

                  • felix

                    It must be his view, he said it

                    It’s his view that it’s someone else’s view. That’s not the same thing as it being his view at all.

                    You’re still using my “goat” reasoning to the letter.

                    You’re saying that anything someone says about someone else automatically applies to them as well. This makes no sense whatsoever.

                    Please try again without the goat reasoning.

                    • PeteG

                      Suffering a bit of Fridayitis felix?

                      Dispute it if you like, but I think it is fairly general knowledge that Harawira sees himself as someone who fights “for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people”.

                      He said the bin Laden family mourn – probably some of them at least do that – for “for a man who fought for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people””.

                      So Harawira said (and presumably thinks) bin Laden “fought for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people””.

                      Harawira’s view of himself and his view of bin Laden appear to correlate. So it’s a reasonable assumption to make that it is his view on both counts. Don’t distract yourelf with your goat obsession, just see it as it is, it’s quite simple.

                    • lprent []

                      I’d agree with felix. You are using a goat screwing argument.

                      I usually refer to it as a “1 + 1 = 11″ argument beloved of such illogical thinkers as Whaleoil, Wishart and evidentially now yourself. This is because you leap to an unjustified conclusion based on the similarity of objects. This may be the basis of sympathetic magic and the current highest levels of right wing thought (eg Trump), but I just find it idiotic in the extreme.

                    • felix.

                      I think Pete is very subtly trying to let us know that he believes all the things he assumes Hone does.

                      It’s all that Straussian esoteric writing business.

                      That ‘just see it as it is’, for example, is a dead give away.

                    • felix

                      So this is what we have so far:

                      a) Pete thinks Hone believes (x)

                      b) Hone States that he believes someone else thinks (x)

                      c) Therefore Hone must also believe (x)

                      If there’s a step I’m missing, Pete, please point it out would you?

                      edit: P’s b I think that might be it. After all he has repeated Hone’s statement a few times so I guess that means he agrees with it.

                    • ianmac

                      PeteG says he has a comb. A rooster has a comb. Therefore Pete is a rooster. Simple.

                    • PeteG

                      a) Pete thinks Hone believes (x)

                      That’s the bit you seem to be struggling with (or pretending to struggle with). Are you really suggesting I’m the only one who thinks that?

                      If you can understand that many people think something like that you might start to get it. I’ll put it in your sort of language:

                      a) Many people think Hone believes (x).

                      Then it’s not a huge step to:

                      c) Therefore Hone may probably also believe (x)

                    • wtl

                      a) Many people think Hone believes (x).

                      Then it’s not a huge step to:

                      c) Therefore Hone may probably also believe (x)

                      Very good logic. Lets all use that logic and go back to the goats example. I think PeteG likes goats (see above). All those who think the same, please add your comments here. If ‘many’ people think that we will have:

                      c) Therefore PeteG may probably like goats

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      I’ve noticed people recently talking about PeteG’s unsavoury obsession with goats. Where there’s smoke there’s fire. That’s just simple logic.

                    • PeteG

                      wtl – there’s a major flaw in your attempt at a mass attack. It’s obvious that no one has any idea of my views on goats, apart from felix acting like billy. And you know what Harawira is well known for.

                      felix, you’ll have to try a bit harder, lp has not come in black so you can deliver you closing lecture under cover.

                      lp – do you really think that “Harawira sees himself as fighting for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people” it an unjustified conclusion?

                      Here’s some more from Morgan:

                      It is not that Hone lacks discipline, he is not shooting from the hip, he genuinely believes that Osama Bin Laden is freedom fighter. I am no expert on the subject, but others more qualified than I have indicated that he was not – he was in fact a cruel and oppressive man with warped religious notions. Osama did not believe in freedom in the proper sense of the word.

                      This is Hone’s most significant problem. He is supremely confident in his beliefs, but some of his beliefs are built upon romantic and ultimately fallacious notions. Hone Harawira immediately equates the underdog, the perceived anti-western/anti-colonial fighter with something good.

                      He equated bin Laden’s fight with his romantic notion of his own.

                    • felix

                      Dearest Pete, no-one said you were the only one.

                      But now you’re back to plain old begging the question. You can’t use a lie in the Herald to prove itself because a bunch of people believed it was true.

                      Also, you’ve mentioned goats quite a few times today. There’s obviously more to this Pete/goat connection than I first thought.

                      Obviously.

                    • billy goat

                      Speaking on behalf of NZ goats, I can confirm we have no interest in the advances of Pete G.

                    • wtl

                      I wasn’t really calling for a mass attack, but rather pointing out the absurdity of your logic. If you feel threatened, you should have another look at your logic – you are basically saying that if enough people believe that y thinks x, then it is probably true that y thinks x. Is that fair? Judge for yourself.

                      I don’t know you personally, neither do I know Harawira. All I can go by is what I see/read. The only reason you think Harawira thinks x is because of the reports in the MSM (unless I am mistaken and you know him personally). The same with comments about you. All I can go by are comments here. Yes, you have never said that you like goats. But neither did Harawira really say what was attributed to him. Yet somehow because it is reported in the media that Harawira thinks x, then it is true? Perhaps then, the only real flaw in my comment is that there isn’t a story in the MSM saying that PeteG likes goats (even if it is untrue). If there was, then more people would believe it, which, by your logic would make it true.

                    • felix

                      “It’s obvious that no one has any idea of my views on goats, apart from felix acting like billy.”

                      Not so, Pete. In fact there’s a growing consensus around your goat-related activities.

                      ianmac mentioned that you might be a cock, and I’m not sure what that means but it’s all farmyard-related, isn’t it?

                    • PeteG

                      It’s obvious you’re running out of flawed argument when you resort to that. Trying the direct flame approach and see if that works?

                      no-one said you were the only one.

                      If you concede I’m not the only one and that there may be many others it blows your wee game away a bit, doesn’t it.

                    • lprent

                      Ummm looks like goat friday to me… Follows the week after good friday.

                    • PeteG

                      You’re kidding, Good Friday was two weeks ago.

                    • felix

                      “If you concede I’m not the only one and that there may be many others it blows your wee game away a bit, doesn’t it.”

                      No, because I think you and others are wrong together.

                      Durr.

  16. the sprout 16

    great post – thanks for writing this Irish.
    it helps a lot to know there are still a few sane, skeptical people out there.

    Mallard’s post on Red Alert really underscored what an embittered has-been arsehole he’s become.

  17. Daveo 17

    Looks like the lie is becoming a diplomatic incident now. Well done liars you’ve really done us all proud as a nation now.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/4970392/Harawiras-bin-Laden-comments-hit-Pakistan

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      Yeah the MSM liars didn’t look that far ahead.

      Now it’s taken a life of it’s own, as these things do, and threatens NZ’s reputation.

    • higherstandard 17.2

      Hone has no one to blame but himself, he should think twice before he opens his mouth – this is just another example in a long list of his fuck ups which suggests he’s a combination of a bit of a thickee and a stirrer.

      • felix 17.2.1

        Kind of yeah.

        It was dumb* enough that he said what he did say, but that doesn’t give the media a license to make up other shit and pretend he said that too.

        *unless this is what he wanted in which case not** so dumb.

        **unless “what he wanted” was a dumb idea all along, in which case refer to the start of this comment.

        • ianmac 17.2.1.1

          Hone reached the Pakistan and Brit news but they print his words without a slant that our MSM put on it. And I think that there is a certain amount of support for his position even when misrepresented.

          • PeteG 17.2.1.1.1

            Do you support the position he took on bin Laden Ian?

            The position he then apologised for?

            • felix 17.2.1.1.1.1

              Those are two different things Pete.

              1. As I understand it he apologised for the way he expressed his opinion, and

              2. as you’re demonstrating on the other thread you have a very different idea of what his “position” was than I do.

              You’re asking whether I agree with something that I’m not at all certain exists, and even if it does I may define it differently to you. So there’s no possible answer to that really.

              If you sort out a straight question I’d be happy to give you a straight answer.

            • Puddleglum 17.2.1.1.1.2

              PeteG,

              I have a slightly different take on this than Felix. I think, for good reasons, that Hone may well (indeed should) believe that Bin Laden was “a man who fought for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people”. It would be curious to believe otherwise since the evidence is almost overwhelming that that is exactly why Bin Laden was fighting.

              Here’s my view of Bin Laden, his beliefs, Bin Laden’s family’s beliefs (I know, there’s lots of them and they probably have different beliefs) and your beliefs about Hone’s beliefs.

              Judging by numerous releases (videos, recordings, statements, etc.) that appear to have come from Osama Bin Laden, I have every reason to believe that Bin Laden himself believed he was fighting a ‘good’ fight which, at least in part, involved liberating Saudi Arabia and Muslim’s in general (i.e., ‘freeing’ them) so that they could live Muslim lives in their lands without being dominated by foreigners.

              It also seems reasonable to believe that a number of members of Bin Laden’s family supported him (some of them were in his ‘compound’, some were his children, etc.). Therefore, it also seems reasonable that at least some of them believed what he believed – that he was fighting for freedom and to liberate ‘his people’, etc..

              When Bin Laden died, those same family members would, I believe, have mourned for him (they were family, after all). Part of that mourning was, therefore, for someone who was understood, by himself and by them, to be fighting for freedom for his people and for their lands.

              So, when Hone said that “they [bin laden's family] mourn for a man who fought for the rights, the land and the freedom of his people” and “pursued independence for his people, his family and his tribe” this seems extraordinarily accurate, even a truism, unless we assume that Bin Laden’s motives were not genuine.

              But, once again, from his recordings, writings, etc. Bin Laden seemed pretty genuine about being motivated by concern for the ‘rights, land and freedom of his people’. Unless we have some conspiracy that Bin Laden was some sort of CIA agent provocateur then those do seem to be his motives. Of course, we might think that the means by which he chose to pursue those ends were grotesque and utterly unjustified but that doesn’t change what appears to be the fact that some such motivation was driving him.

              I’d agree that Hone was unwise to voice these almost self-evident truths because it would have been obvious that his political opponents – and those who have no sympathy with his other views concerning Maori sovereignty – would try to imply that his words were evidence for, not only that Hone believed that Bin Laden was motivated by such motives (as, quite obviously, were the Saudis on the planes, the London underground bombers, etc.) but also that he approved of the means by which Bin Laden pursued them. That’s one reason why politicians are routinely afraid to voice self-evident truths – they often go against some myth or other that has hold of the public imagination, for various reasons.

              Hone’s opponents (e.g., you) may genuinely believe that Hone does approve of the means Bin Laden used but Hone’s actions (e.g., becoming an MP rather than, for example, trying to organise a guerilla army) suggest that he is not himself predisposed to use those means. In other words, I can’t see the evidence from Hone’s actions that he would approve of Bin Laden’s means. Do you have such evidence?

              To try to clarify my argument here’s a starter for 10, PeteG: Do you think Bin Laden thought that he was fighting for the ‘rights, the land and the freedom of his people’?

              If ‘yes’, then you agree entirely with Hone’s comments quoted above. If ‘no’, then you must have some evidence that Bin Laden’s motives were not those he expressed, and that Bin Laden was either unaware of his true motivation or was part of some deception and had other reasons for his actions.

              • PeteG

                I have no idea what bin Laden’s motivation was over a couple of decades.

                Bin Laden was outspoken against the Saudi government, he was banished and had his passport revoked.

                As a result of his dealings in and advocacy of violent extremist jihad, Osama bin Laden lost his Saudi citizenship in 1994 and was disowned by his billionaire family.

                So he didn’t exactly fight for the “rights, the land and the freedom of his people”. He buggered off to the Sudan and then to Afghanistan, countries of other people. You can debate whether he fought there for those people and their land, or for his own religious ambitions.

                • Bin Laden was obviously concerned at the deployment of US troops in Saudi Arabia. Your quote is from the 9/11 Commission Report. In your link, however, in the section preceding (on Al Qaeda’s formation) you’ll note that the reason given there for his exile was his outspoken criticism of the Saudi government for allowing US troops on Saudi soil (i.e., not because of “his dealings in and advocacy of violent extremist jihad – after all, in Wahabi Saudi Arabia that’s a very common advocacy).

                  It’s also well acknowledged (it appears in many of the tapes purported to be from him) that he supported Palestinians in their attempts to gain statehood and condemned the actions of Israel and presence of the US. Irrespective of your position on the Israel-Palestinian conflict, it’s clear Bin Laden was advocating Palestinians rights to their land and to be a free people.

                  On the matter of religion, yes he undoubtedly was a very pious man and sees most of the ‘freedom fighting’ occurring in the Muslim world as part of some religious drama. But I don’t see how that is incompatible with him fighting for the “rights, the land adn the freedom of his people” (whether those people be Saudi’s or Muslims in general). After all, many WWII partisans fighting German occupation were committed communists and socialists and probably saw the battle as a political and ideological one (and part of an international and global battle). I don’t think anyone, however, would deny that they were freedom fighters. And, in Spain, the International Brigade were composed of foreigners (so, of course, was the fascist army – Italians and Germans) who were motivated by various values, ideologies and the like. Once again, I don’t think anyone would claim they weren’t fighting for the freedom of Spain and the Spanish people.

                  I really don’t see why advocating jihad somehow means Bin Laden is not someone who fights for “the rights, the land and the freedom of his people”. It’s pretty clear, isn’t it, that in the last couple of decades his main enemy was western power exercised in Muslim lands? He opposed western power dominating, invading and taking over those lands, didn’t he? If ‘yes’, then isn’t it a very simple step to see that he was fighting for rights, land and freedom for ‘his’ people?

                  I think the reason why people think that this would be a terrible thing to ascribe to Bin Laden is that, for some reason, they think that ascribing that motive necessitates ‘respecting’ or ‘approving’ of his means to achieve those rights and freedoms. Obviously it doesn’t. No-one has to concede that he’s a ‘good man’ or that what he did was ‘ok’ just because we acknowledge that he fought for what, in many circumstances, we would see as a good cause. The ‘ends’ might be fine (I, for one, certainly think that western powers – or any powers – should stop interfering in other people’s countries); but there’s still the means to consider.

                  A ‘noble’ end doesn’t give a free moral pass to the means. In fact, in many, if not most, cases, it is the means that determine the overall moral content of someone’s actions, not the end for which they act (or for which they claim to act).

  18. Armchair Worrier 18

    Regardless of whether their was a slight misquotation of Hone’s words his sense is clear – the day that justice was served on the worst terrorist of modern times, he chooses to point out that his family will mourn him as a fighter for ‘the rights, the land and the freedom of his people”. The timing and word choice betray his sympathies.
    This either shows an ignorance of recent history – OBL fought for the restoration of the medieval infidel free caliphate under the most repressive brand of Islam and was inarguably an enthusiast for the removal of the rights, lands and freedom of those who didnt happen to share his warped version of islam, or a deliberate alignment with ANY anti western movement no matter how violent their methods. Then again perhaps its both . ..

  19. Jim in Tokyo 19

    This just gets worse and worse. Did anybody actually watch the video? Obviously not readers of the NBR, otherwise they would have picked up on the fact that the NZPA article is also based on a fabricated quote:

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/bin-laden-freedom-fighter-harawira-nn-92331

    ““We have heard nothing but negative things about him from the Americans, but he fought for the self-determination of his people and for his beliefs,” Mr Harawira said.”

    This was actually word for word a quote from the presenter of the show – Harawira said nothing of the sort. He was actually relatively diplomatic in his response:

    “Indeed, despite what the media have said, his family, his tribe, his people are in mourning. They mourn for the man who fought for the rights, the land, the freedom of his people”.

    As to why he went even this far, he helpfully bookends his comments by explaining TWICE that it is Maori protocol to honour all dead, a point which also got lost in the mainstream media scramble.

    “We should not damn them in death, but acknowledge the positive aspects of life”.

    • Pascal's bookie 19.1

      Now there’s a classy bunch of commenters. A number of folks wishing Hone dead.

      Does Collins know?

  20. Toby Keith 20

    He called him a freedom fighter, Hone deserves all the crap that he is getting from the media and the public, to support that statement your not re4ally grounded in reality.

    • ianmac 20.1

      USA has sharp shooters.
      The enemy have snipers.
      The USA have Freedom Fighters.
      The people fighting invaders in Afghanistan are terrorists.
      The USA suffered 3,000 terrible losses in 9/11.
      Iraq suffered terrible civilian losses in excess of 500,000 but they were just collateral damage.
      USA carries out an extra-judicial assassination in another country.
      Others regard Justice and the right to a fair trial as indications of a fair society.

      Just depends on your point of view really.

      • PeteG 20.1.1

        What’s your point of view on what Osama bin Laden was Ian?

        • Colonial Viper 20.1.1.1

          Osama was some unarmed guy who got executed in cold blood by a heavily armed US special forces detachment, probably on orders.

          Osama is also a Weapon of Mass Distraction.

          He’s not going to help the US from circling down the drain and he’s not going to help the tens of millions of American unemployed, underemployed and living in poverty even as over a trillion US$ have been spent in military adventures in Iraq and Afghanistan.

          Lots of money available for the military industrial complex and their major shareholders, none for teachers, police, health and fire services.

          • joe90 20.1.1.1.1

            One version, executed.

            • Colonial Viper 20.1.1.1.1.1

              Yeah, the President needed to assert political strength in the US, and capturing Osama would have led to a trial which would have been a major distraction for the Obama administration for months (as well as probably kept ratcheting up tensions with Pakistan).

              This way its a done deal, totally “surgical” and contained. And Obama gets political points for being a tough war time President who is not afraid of making tough calls.

              • Pascal's bookie

                There is that, certainly. But that’s not all of it.

                Taking him alive would have entailed a lot more risk of failure. If the headlines had of been along the lines of “Dozens killed in botched raid” with the Whitehouse claiming that the house that exploded was where bin laden was hiding, and the Pakistanis going full bore ‘outrage against our sovereignty’?

                AQ could easily have announced it first, hailing the glorious martyrdom of obl, who refused to be taken by the infidel and detonated a prepared welcome for the infidel, taking out a squad of their finest crusaders blah blah blah.

                It’s complicated.

        • Pascal's bookie 20.1.1.2

          Fairly accomplished practitioner of 4th generation warfare. Wahhabist. Developed and put into practice Qtibs (sp?) strategies. Charismatic by all accounts. Disciplined. Not a cartoon character.

          • rosy 20.1.1.2.1

            Fairly accomplished practitioner of 4th generation warfare

            who aimed to take down the US financially rather than militarily, hence the symbolic target of the world trade center and targeting transportation systems. He may well have succeeded… the endgame is still to be played out.

            • Pascal's bookie 20.1.1.2.1.1

              Yeah, they aren’t even hiding anymore. There was a discussion paper they published a while ago, in english, laughing at western responses to ‘failed’ attempts on airliners. Cost to AQ was around 40K, cost to west in terms of heightened security measures, millions/year.

              I’ll try and track it down

              • Colonial Viper

                Imagine crippling or destroying a US$4M Abrams tank using a US$200 IED based off a couple of salvaged Saddam Hussein era land mines. That’s a 20,000:1 pay off. Doesn’t get much better than that.

                Osama Bin Laden has effectively a trillion dollars to the American federal debt with a spend of just a couple of million (if that), and the cost to the Americans is still climbing.

              • Pascal's bookie

                Here tis:

                http://securityinnovator.com/index.php?articleID=15989&sectionID=27

                not 40k, 4k.

                More editions of the purported AQ mag here:

                http://publicintelligence.net/complete-inspire-al-qaeda-in-the-arabian-peninsula-aqap-magazine/

                Interesting stuff. I’m mainly interested by the vast gulf between the strategic narratives outlined in their propaganda and ours.

                • rosy

                  Thanks, that is really important information. I don’t understand why politicians in the west are not making clear how the Jihad strategy is working. Not sure how it would play out in the court of public opinion, but it can’t be any worse that the ‘clash of civilisations’ narrative, which incidentally the Arab Spring is proving so wrong.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    but it can’t be any worse that the ‘clash of civilisations’ narrative, which incidentally the Arab Spring is proving so wrong.

                    Great point!

                    I often think, looking at how the US speaks about the conflict, that it is being fought mainly for domestic reasons. It gets used as a prop in the internal battle over what the US is, and much of the propaganda is aimed more at getting victories in that fight than in the, err, other one.

                    • joe90

                      in that fight

                      I take it that you’re referring to this fight.

                      btw, the book is free.

                    • rosy

                      Yes, I’ve always thought that the clash of civilisations narrative is to unite the disunited states under, at the time, Bush. All wrapped in the flag of rabid patriotism. A trick that has been used for eons and the public still falls for it. Everywhere.

                • joe90

                  Fascinating PB, thanks.

                • ianmac

                  The $4k program would actually have played into the hands of unscrupulous USA politicians. “You see folks? We are under threat. You must get used to more powers for Homeland security because there is much to fear, fear, fear. And who knows your subjection gives me more power!”

        • ianmac 20.1.1.3

          Damn . I wrote a fulsome reply to that Pete and it vanished.
          Summary. Read years ago about bin Laden’s early road-building life for his adopted Afghanistan.
          His fight against Russia for USA. The oil pipeline USA was blocked from having across Afghanistan. Bin Laden the Freedom fighter for USA becomes named as a terrorist. 9/11 carried out mostly by Saudis from whom bin Laden had been long since disengaged. 3,000 innocents killed. Iraq lost hundreds of thousands of innocents but they were just collateral. Have to accept bin Laden had a hand in 9/11 but never know now because they killed him. USA invades Afghanistan. Pipeline built by USA for USA. bin Laden the focus of the rhetoric. Hated universally.
          Like most people bin Laden was a mixture of good and bad. His good stuff is forgotten. His bad stuff is evil by Western standards. Would USA have found another excuse to invade Iraq/Afghanistan if not bin Laden? Probably. Should he have been brought to trial .Yes. Should G W Bush be brought to trial for the same reasons? Yes.
          Christian, Islam arguments are eternal and usually hopeless.

          Try bin Laden in an International Court and it would be clearer.
          Am I glad that he was killed in such a way? No.
          Was he a freedom fighter? In many ways yes.
          Was he responsible for terrorist acts? So they tell me.
          Did he believe in what he was doing? Yep. Was he right to do all that he has done. Dunno.
          Was he better/worse than many other Leaders? What do you think?

          • PeteG 20.1.1.3.1

            Thanks Ian. I agree or don’t disagree with much of this but with a bit of a different slant to some things.

            He may have freedom fighting in mind at times but it was a very narrow freedom that was destructive or repressive for many people.
            He has claimed responsibility for 9/11.
            I’m not “glad” he was killed in that way but I’m not sorry that he’s dead.
            I don’t think he was “right” to do what he has done, in the main he was a murdering bastard, like Hitler (who also did good things for Germany and many Germans).

            Actually he wasn’t a freedom fighter or murdering bastard, he got others to do his dirty work.

            • Colonial Viper 20.1.1.3.1.1

              Actually he wasn’t a freedom fighter or murdering bastard, he got others to do his dirty work.

              Pretty sure that Osama has killed his share of Soviet troopers, and done so personally, face to face.

              • NickS

                Nyet.

                In Steve Coll’s book Ghost Wars Osama’s personal fighting experience was apparently limited to one battle, where his base of operations at the time was attacked directly by the Soviets. Osama was primarily a strategist, funder and Islamic scholar and aside from that one battle he staid out of the firing lines encamped along the Afghan-Pakistan borders for most of the USSR occupation of Afghanistan, where the Arab volunteers, arms and money from the Pakistani’s and the Gulf States streamed across the border.

                • Hi NickS,

                  Jason Burke obviously disagrees with Steve Coll – see point 5

                  • NickS

                    Forgot about the second battle :P
                    Thanks.

                    Though I think Burke’s wrong about the arms and training supplies, but since I no longer have Ghost Wars on me, I can’t check that one out…

                    What’s more interesting though is the veracity of prior reports on Bin Laden’s health per his kidney problems, as general word from the media was that he needed dialysis. But if his renal issues weren’t major as Burke claims, then drugs would probably easily deal with it and mean Bin Laden could far more easily hide.

            • ianmac 20.1.1.3.1.2

              PeteG @ 7:55 Like G W Bush? Would a person foreign to USA be justified in slipping into the country and killing the President for the distant killings that he authorised?

              • PeteG

                I don’t know if justified is the right word (it could be) but I think it would at least be understandable. I’m aware the US is seen as an invading country by many Iraqis and Afghanis (I sort of accepted going into Afghanistan but was totally against the Iraqi invasion).

                It’s totally unjustified when the target it is a bunch of innocent people in a couple of skyscrapers.

                Andrew Geddis touches on some of this here.

                • rosy

                  Yes I too accepted that the US had a right to chase OBL down in Afganistan, but had no right whatsover to go into Iraq. That is not the same as saying I agree with how the US handled their operation in Afganistan.

                  I’m totally in agreement with Andrew Geddis.

                • Vicky32

                  Oh Pete, why is it that you and, it seems almost everyone else in this country, main stream media, woman in the street, man in the takeaway bar takes it for granted that OBL was, as the media keep saying “the architect of 9/11″?
                  It’s a ‘popular misconception’ that he took responsibility.

  21. William Joyce 21

    Not wanting to get into what Hone said or didn’t say, or whether US foreign policy is good or bad, or if he received justice or was illegally executed…..
    The idea that Osama was a freedom fighter is a misuse of the term. He was not fighting for democracy, the right of women to vote, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and so many other forms of self-determination.
    He “war” was a war of religion and the only politics that interested him were those associated with his religious goals.
    He fought for the freedom to practice religion, but only his religion.
    He fought for the freedom to practice Islam and only his form of Islam.
    He fought for the freedom to remove the infidel from “Muslim lands” and would ultimately want them gone from all lands.
    He fought for the freedom to “remove” all Muslim “compromisers”, all those who did not follow his form of Islam.
    He fought for the freedom to eliminate the infidel from the world either through conversion or the sword.
     
    It is wrong, and ill informed, to label him a freedom fighter.

    • Colonial Viper 21.1

      Actually, Bin Laden fought to free Afghanistan and her people from an oppressive occupying foreign military superpower* which had invaded his adopted homeland. So yeah, Osama was definitely and definitively a Freedom Fighter of the day.

      *Not the USA.

      • William Joyce 21.1.1

        The infidels were in a Muslim land.
        If the situation had been such you would have seen that he was not fighting for the right of self-determination for Afghans. After the Russians left, if the Afghans had voted en masse to establish a secular state with freedom of religion you would have seen OBL fighting that democratic Afghan state instead.
        But that was never tested by circumstances/history so people make the mistake of thinking he was fighting for the freedom of Afghanistan.
         

        • Colonial Viper 21.1.1.1

          I’m sorry William, but Freedom Fighters don’t have to fight for the United State’s ideals of democracy, self determination and freedom. They fight for their own ideals and values.

          Even if the United States trained and armed them anyway because it was convenient to US foreign policy at the time.

          • William Joyce 21.1.1.1.1

            Well, CV, the ideas of democracy, self-determination, freedom etc pre-date the US and are not owned by the US.
            Just because the US spout these ideas (and then don’t live up to them) does not make them American.
            “They fight for their own ideals and values.” – you missed my point. It is quite possible that he would have opposed them if their “own ideals and values.” disagreed with his.
            He would not have sanctioned them having the freedom to choose things he did not agree with. Therefore, he was not fighting for freedom. Therefore, he was not a Freedom Fighter.
             

            • Colonial Viper 21.1.1.1.1.1

              Well, call him whatever you want then, but I distinctly recall Reagan calling his bunch Freedom Fighters. Fighting against an oppressive dictatorial foreign Communist state.

            • rosy 21.1.1.1.1.2

              He would not have sanctioned them having the freedom to choose things he did not agree with. Therefore, he was not fighting for freedom. Therefore, he was not a Freedom Fighter.

              Agree. And his habit of moving into failed or divided states for protection and influence pretty much proves it. Especially supporting and supported by the repressive Taliban that did not have support of the country outside of what they could hold with terror, and his move to Sudan. That was also the US biggest mistake with the Iraq war – creating another failed state for AQ to do more dirty work – note the Sunni/Shia divide here that also show there was no sanctioning of freedoms.

              btw: Ianmac I don’t know how you can say you dunno if he was right to do all that he has done. The US is wrong to blow up thousands of innocents and destroy nations for a bigger political objective and so was Osama.

              • ianmac

                Yes Rosy. How would the World react if a force swept into USA and assassinated their President as the perpetrator of those crimes? Would you say it was right to kill the President?

                • rosy

                  No, I would say it’s wrong to kill the president, just like I can say it was wrong to kill OBL.

                  But that’s not the point – the point was you said you don’t know if OBL was right to do all the things he’s done. I can’t see how there is any doubt that his killing of innocents is wrong – WTC, London, Madrid and the rest. Wrong. End of. Murder is wrong no matter who does it and for whatever reason. I guess that’s just how I think, I’m not going to argue it.

        • Pascal's bookie 21.1.1.2

          Just saying, but there is absolutely no reason to believe that Afghans would vote en masse to establish a secular state with freedom of religion.

          • Colonial Viper 21.1.1.2.1

            Americans have a bad habit of not recognising democratically elected governments if they are unfriendly.

            In the US value system, being democratic is totally optional. But being friendly to the US is totally necessary.

          • William Joyce 21.1.1.2.2

            @PB : Absolutely, of course not, not in a month of Sundays.

            • Pascal's bookie 21.1.1.2.2.1

              So what are we for? Self determination?

              • William Joyce

                Just for clarity, I started my post with….
                “Not wanting to get into what Hone said or didn’t say, or whether US foreign policy is good or bad, or if he received justice or was illegally executed…..”
                Can I add to that
                - I am making no statement (at least not now) about whether western ideas of freedom are good or bad.
                - I am making no statement (at least not now) about what Afghanistan (whatever that means given it’s composition) should do or not do regarding any of those values.
                I am merely pointing out the contradiction of calling someone a freedom fighter who was not interested in providing freedom.
                As I state below, the best we can say about him is that he fought for the liberation of Afghanistan from a Soviet invasion.

    • rosy 21.2

      Well said William Joyce. He may have been a freedom fighter once upon a time, but he resigned from that role a long, long time ago.

    • ianmac 21.3

      William” “The idea that Osama was a freedom fighter is a misuse of the term.”
      The freedoms that you list are your view of what freedoms you think should be and suggests that other people are bad if they don’t subscribe to them.
      Freedom could be just the right of a person or group to have self-determination about how they do anything. If someone especially those outside your country tries to impose a different belief system then you might fight for freedom is to protect your beliefs.
      If some one tries to tell your country that your women must dress in certain ways, or worship in certain ways or have a different justice system, I imagine you would want to fight them to defend your way.
      On reflection the things you list above would be good to fight for for those who are passionate about their beliefs.
      Off to buy my fish and chips.

      • William Joyce 21.3.1

        Ianmac, instead of reading day old news around your fish and chips, read a book on how to make an argument. (Then try reading comprehension).
        You will find that I did not promote those “ideals”. So my personal beliefs about them are not the issue nor was I suggesting that Afghanistan should adopt them. Understand?
        Freedom involves the right to choose. I used examples of what the west describe as freedoms to show instances of the sort of things that OBL would not have been happy with. And should Afghanistan have chosen (which they probably wouldn’t) then he would have opposed the choice of the Afghan people and therefore their freedom to choose. Therefore he was not fighting for freedom.
        At best he could be described as fighting for the liberation of Afghanistan from the Soviet occupation. To claim more than that misses his motivation.
        I hope the fish and chips were nice.

        • Carol 21.3.1.1

          Philosophy 101: “Freedom” means nothing as a word on its own. It can mean “freedom from xxxx” or “freedom to xxxxx”. So WJ, you are just using the notion of “freedom” in a very specific way and with meanings it has in a very specific cultural context.

          • William Joyce 21.3.1.1.1

            Absolutely Carol.
            I was not discussing freedom as some ethereal, abstract concept,  in the way that it falls so readily off the lips of Americans, without definitions or conditions. ["Even in freedom there is no freedom" - please discuss for Phil 101 midterm :-)]
            The use of the term freedom fighter infers some one who is fighting for the freedom to choose X or Y. They would not have been truly to chose either X or Y IF either X or Y was against his wishes.
            If (X AND “OBL doesn’t allow X”) then Y, else Y
            - also Philosophy 101.
            All OBL was doing was fighting for is the removal of one form of unchosen government for another form of unchosen government.

            • Carol 21.3.1.1.1.1

              Or, William, it can mean fighting for freedom from a specific kind of repression or government. Your focus on “choice” is just one form, while you don’t rate the other freedom from. But that indicates your western cultural values. Also the focus on freedom to choose suggests western individualistic values too. For some people freedom might mean freedom to eat regularly as supplied to them by a fairly autocratic government that chooses for them what they will eat.

              • William Joyce

                Well, food for thought, Carol.
                Again to labour the Phil 101 theme, perhaps we are constrained by language here. A fighter who “frees from” one oppression only to replace it with another is just a “steward” on a slave ship who has given you a window seat.
                Perhaps I will have to accept that to everyone else FF is just inadequate short hand for “a person who liberates a people group from one form of oppression, regardless of whether that person goes on to institute another form of oppression”.
                I guess, all I can say is that I won’t dignify the man with the phrase freedom fighter anymore than I will call John Key an advocate for the poor.

        • ianmac 21.3.1.2

          William. I was not really trying to make an argument and yes the f&c were excellent; very crisp and fresh.
          I was really just considering the idea of freedom and what it means depending on where you stand. Abortion is a crime in some eyes. Abortion is a rightful freedom in the eyes of others. So deciding on just where the right to be a freedom fighter is so hard to be sure right/wrong, I was just musing rather that setting up an argument.
          What bin Laden did early on was more than building roads and fighting Russians then fighting Americans. But it was a long time since my fish and chips had any print on it at all, so I would have to go back and read a book to develop credible info.
          Anyway your question about freedom fighters was food for thought, without the salt.

          Had another thought. Do you think that there is a pattern? Do those who support right leaning ideas have more or less support for the rightness of killing bin Laden, compared to social democratic left leaning folk?
          How about for Freedom Fighting?

          • William Joyce 21.3.1.2.1

            Glad the F&C were good :-)
            “considering the idea of freedom and what it means depending on where you stand.” – As I see it, freedom has nothing to do with where you stand. Where you stand, as you put it, is a matter of perspective and is all about what you see to be true.
            Freedom is about the room to move with regard that belief without facing adverse consequences.
            I think you are right in seeing a pattern. It’s like the debate over anthro. climate, etc. Which is a shame because it causes people to take up positions, not based on reason but who they identify with. That identity can be influenced by education and the schools of thought you were educated in.
            Perhaps I have not been educated in the right schools of thought that would call someone who would force a group of people to conform to his will a freedom fighter. It just seems incongruous to me.
             

    • Puddleglum 21.4

      Sorry William, but this just doesn’t hold together as an argument.

      If freedom means anything in a political sense, it is the right of a people to determine their own path without the interference of another people. If the path they ‘determine’ by their internal processes is, from the outside, a path that limits freedom of the individual that in no way bears on whether at the political level their initial fight with occupiers was for their freedom.

      As any classical liberal will tell you (at the individual level) freedom may not be used well, but it remains freedom.

      You’re confusing a notion of ‘freedom’ cast in relation to the behaviour of individuals with the usual notion of freedom that is cast at the political, social level. The latter is why we talk about “free, sovereign states” to distinguish them from ‘dependencies’, ‘colonies’, etc.. The phrase ‘freedom fighter’ is always – and certainly in this context – referring to this latter level. It’s got nothing to do with the relative freedom of individuals within a “free, sovereign state”.

      • PeteG 21.4.1

        If freedom means anything in a political sense, it is the right of a people to determine their own path without the interference of another people.

        It gets complicated when a minority (or maybe a majority) of a people take control and oppress (or worse) some of the people. Nazi Germany is a prime example.

      • Puddleglum 21.4.2

        Another way I could make the same point is to note that places like Hong Kong (and its people), under British rule, was not free.

        Nevertheless, so far as I’m aware, individuals in Hong Kong’s population enjoyed relatively high levels of personal freedom. But, as a people, they were not free – they were ruled by Britain (i.e., by another people – who, themselves, may, at the individual level have been more or less free than individuals in Hong Kong). Someone who was fighting for the independence of Hong Kong from Britain would have been a ‘freedom fighter’, even if the kind of free state they wanted would reintroduce the binding of women’s feet.

        • ianmac 21.4.2.1

          Great reads thanks Puddlegum. Do you think bin Laden could be regarded as a freedom fighter? Could his friends and family have regarded him so?

        • William Joyce 21.4.2.2

          Ok, I get the distinction between the two levels and therefore “Someone who was fighting for the independence of Hong Kong from Britain would have been a ‘freedom fighter’”.
          But the phrase infers a nobility of cause and action. This was witnessed by the reaction of so many to what they think Hone said. So to use it to refer to a person who would fight one power to “free” a country so that it can be subject to another imposed regime is not what people would understand as a freedom fighter. If this is some specialized jargon phrase that means something different to the words it uses them obviously I have it wrong.

          • wtl 21.4.2.2.1

            FFS, all this argument about the precise meaning of ‘freedom fighter’ is utterly pointless since Harawira never actually said ‘freedom fighter’ . He was speaking Maori, not English. The argument should be about meaning of the Maori words used, not the the meaning of the words used in someone’s English translation.

  22. joe90 22

    The Battle for Tora Bora

    How Osama bin Laden slipped from our grasp: The definitive account.

  23. weka 23

    Does anyone have a direct link to the original Harawira video? The ones in the post are now out of date and I can’t find the interview on TVNZ.

  24. weka 24

    Here’s a transcript from the Stuff excerpt of the Te Karare interview. I agree with what was said by an earlier commenter, that this is an English subtitle version of sentiments being expressed originally in Maori. With my limited understanding of te reo I’d say that the subtitles are a simplified version.

    TK: First your thoughts on the death of Osama bin Laden.

    HH: It is custom for Maori to honour and mourn the deceased, so I acknowledge him and bid him farewell. Return to your ancestors who wait for you beyond the veil of death.

    TK: We have heard nothing but negative things about him from the Americans, but he fought for self-determination of his people and for his beliefs.

    HH: Indeed, despite what the media has said, his family, his tribe, his people are in mourning. They mourn for the man who fought for the rights, the lands and the freedom of his people. We should not damn them in death, but acknowledge the positive aspects of life.

    • PeteG 24.1

      I’m happy to damn OBL in death. He was responsible for the deaths of many innocent people.

      • weka 24.1.1

        You’re entitled to your own personal beliefs about what is an appropriate response to someone’s death. What’s at issue is why so many kiwis don’t want to learn about Maori beliefs about what is appropriate. And why they’re not free to express them.

        • PeteG 24.1.1.1

          They are free to express them. And they have to accept the consequences if they want to try and attract a party vote.

          From what I’ve seen there are varying opinions on what is appropriate and what Maori beliefs are on it. Harawira and Walker seem a minority even amongst Maori on that (and it’s notable that Harawira saw fit to offer an apology). Not just competing MPs like Jones and Henare, but also online commentators like Joshua Hitchcock, and Morgan Godfery who said:

          “I have no problem with Hone’s view that Maori respect the dead. But respect falls short of homage. I am really, really disappointed that Hone has made this mistake. ”

          And

          “Angry, arrogant Harawira may be gone, but stupid Harawira is still with us.”

          • Colonial Viper 24.1.1.1.1

            From what I’ve seen there are varying opinions on what is appropriate and what Maori beliefs are on it.

            That’s because Maori language and traditions can vary greatly even across different parts of the same iwi.

          • weka 24.1.1.1.2

            “They are free to express them. ”

            I’m not sure they are. If Maori are consistently misquoted and misrepresented in the MSM, they’re not really free to express their beliefs and world views without negative repercussions. By negative repercussions I’m not talking about people disagreeing with them or condeming them. I’m talking about their words and views being so distorted that the people that end up judging them don’t know what they are judging. Also, if non-Maori won’t make the effort to understand Maori world views in context, then they don’t have the right to make judgements. What we’re seeing this week is just more of the same old racism that’s endemic here thanks to the MSM.

            “Not just competing MPs like Jones and Henare, but also online commentators like Joshua Hitchcock, and Morgan Godfery who said:”

            So? Are you saying that Harawira is wrong, that his statements in the above transcript don’t reflect a Maori world view just because some people disagree with him?

            Besides, how do you know that any of the people you’ve seen commenting have heard what Harawira actually said as opposed to what the Herald etc said he said? Two very different things.

            The thing that pisses me off about this situation is that Harawira should have been free to say what he wants and let his comments stand, and then the people that disagree could have had an interesting debate about the different world views at play here, why Maori see the world the way they do and have the protocols and responses they do. They’re not actually as radical as the MSM are making out. The problem is that we are still unable as a society to have a conversation that includes intelligent understanding of things Maori. That is the real shame this week.

            • PeteG 24.1.1.1.2.1

              If Maori are consistently misquoted and misrepresented in the MSM,

              It’s not just Maori that think they are misquoted and misrepresented if they are reported in the MSM, most people don’t see reports on them as they wished.

              Also, if non-Maori won’t make the effort to understand Maori world views in context, then they don’t have the right to make judgements.

              If Hone doesn’t want to make the effort to understand voter response to whatever he chooses to say then he won’t get votes. Non-Maori (and Maori) can choose what they want to understand, or not. Most of the public don’t and won’t take their time – especially those who currently don’t vote, they ones that Harawira and Sykes are hoping will give them a party vote. They have to earn votes, not expect the disillusioned to take the time to see things the Mana way.

              Mana is earned, not a chosen label.

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    Real Climate | 27-08
  • Gordon Campbell on Winston Peters’ latest bout of immigrant bashing, and ...
    So in the latest 3News-Reid Research poll, New Zealand First and the Conservatives have been the big winners. It is only one poll, but rather than cannibalising each other’s vote, Colin Craig and Winston Peters do seem to be managing...
    Gordon Campbell | 27-08
  • Democracy – Leonard Cohen
      Because I've just come back from Nicky Hager's extraordinary public meeting in the Mt Eden War Memorial Hall, here's Lenny's magnificent paean to the democratic ideal. If it's coming to the USA - why not here too? Sail on, sail on,...
    Bowalley Road | 27-08
  • The Pilgrim Of Light: Nicky Hager And New Zealand Politics
    Admonishing Angel: Nicky Hager descends periodically to trouble our consciences and wreak merry havoc with the orderly conduct of our political affairs. But, more than any other journalist in New Zealand, he has taught us to read the actions of...
    Bowalley Road | 27-08
  • Positive!
    The public are being turned off by dirty politics. Our opponents are scum, but let's focus on the issues....
    Imperator Fish | 27-08
  • Lack of information on Port of Tauranga death extremely concerning
    The Maritime Union is extremely concerned about the lack of public information about a Tauranga port worker who died last week....
    MUNZ | 27-08
  • Climate Change: the Terminological Timeline
    It is often said that a picture speaks a thousand words. The run of pictures below, it is hoped, will do a little more. They exist as a counterpoint to that laziest of claims - that, a few years ago,...
    Skeptical Science | 27-08
  • No healthy economy without a healthy environment
    Labour recognises that we cannot have a healthy economy without a healthy environment, says Environment spokesperson Moana Mackey announcing Labour’s environment policy. “New Zealand’s economy has been built on the back of the enormous environmental wealth we collectively enjoy as...
    Labour | 28-08
  • Better protection, fairer deal for Kiwi consumers
    Tackling excessive prices, ensuring consumers have enough information to make ethical choices and giving the Commerce Commission more teeth are highlights of Labour’s Consumer Rights policy. “The rising cost of living is a concern for thousands of Kiwi families. A...
    Labour | 28-08
  • Media Advisory – MANA Movement Candidate for Waiariki Annette Sykes, Waia...
    Media are advised that this coming weekend, the MANA Movement Candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes, will be on the Internet MANA Road Trip within the electorate of Waiariki. Speakers confirmed are Annette Sykes, Hone Harawira, John Minto, Laila Harre and Kim...
    Mana | 27-08
  • Internet MANA – Waiariki Road Trip: 29, 30, 31 Aug 2014
    The Internet MANA Road Trip hits Waiariki this weekend. It would be great if all MANA members in Waiariki could especially attend the public meetings and show their support for our Waiariki candidate Annette Sykes. Confirmed speakers Hone Harawira (except Taupo), Annette...
    Mana | 27-08
  • First home buyers $200 a week better off with Labour
    A couple earning around $75,000 a year would be $200 a week better off buying a two bedroom terraced Labour KiwiBuild home instead of an equivalent new build under National’s housing policy, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe.  “National’s policy to...
    Labour | 26-08
  • Another Day – Another big power profit
    The latest profit announcement from Genesis Energy shows that the power company was sold for a song to the detriment of the country’s power consumers, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “A net profit of $ 49.2 million follows hard...
    Labour | 26-08
  • Labour embraces the rainbow
    Labour will work hard to ensure all New Zealanders enjoy the freedom to grow up and live their lives in dignity and security. Labour’s Rainbow policy, released tonight in Wellington, focuses on International Relations, Human Rights and Education....
    Labour | 26-08
  • National gets fast and loose with the facts
    In their desperation to make it look as though they are doing something about the housing crisis, National is playing fast and loose with the facts, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 26-08
  • Labour will drop power prices for Kiwi families
    New Zealanders will get cheaper power prices under NZ Power, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “The electricity market is clearly broken. With falling demand for electricity, prices should be going down. Instead prices are going up and companies are extracting...
    Labour | 26-08
  • Labour: Promoting sustainable tourism
    Ensuring New Zealand’s clean, green status continues to be an international tourism benchmark and reviewing MBIE’s oversight of the tourism sector will be on the radar under a Labour Government. Releasing Labour’s Tourism policy today, spokesperson Darien Fenton said tourism...
    Labour | 26-08
  • Skills shortage a result of National’s complacency
    The fact that there is still a severe shortage of skilled tradespeople, despite a growth in the number of apprentices, is a result of National’s failure to plan and develop the workforce, Grant Robertson, Labour Employment, Skills and TrainingSpokesperson says."The...
    Labour | 26-08
  • How much tax does John Key pay compared to a minimum wage worker?? – Mint...
    MANA Movement Economic Justice spokesperson John Minto is calling for a radical overhaul of New Zealand’s taxation system with calculations showing that a minimum wage worker pays a ten times higher tax rate than the Prime Minister. o Minimum wage...
    Mana | 25-08
  • Labour’s culture of science and innovation
    Labour will create a culture of science and innovation in New Zealand that will be the envy of the world, says Labour’s Innovation, Research and Development spokesperson Megan Woods. “Labour believes that good science lies at the heart of a...
    Labour | 25-08
  • Improving life for our new New Zealanders
    New Zealand’s international standing as a community that encourages and fosters all cultures will be bolstered under a Labour Government with an upgrade of the present Office of Ethnic Affairs to a Ministry. Releasing Labour’s Ethnic Affairs policy, spokesperson Phil...
    Labour | 25-08
  • South Auckland housing crisis
    National’s HomeStart package is nothing more than a political stunt designed to beguile South Auckland voters, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio. “Few working Pasifika and Maori workers in South Auckland will be able to buy their own...
    Labour | 25-08
  • Home buyer subsidy discredited in Oz
    Treasury advised against National’s policy of ramping up home buyer subsidies after it was discredited in Australia because it pushed house prices even higher, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Documents released under the OIA (attached) show Treasury advised the...
    Labour | 25-08
  • Nursing hours explain turnover and high-stress culture
    A staff survey supports concerns nursing staff at Dunedin Hospital are under increasing pressure and that the emergency department is in a critical state, says Labour’s Associate Health Spokesperson David Clark.  “An ED nursing survey at Dunedin found that 80...
    Labour | 24-08
  • Underhand tactics prove case for axing donations
    Revelations that schools are using underhand tactics to coerce donations from cash-strapped parents further highlights the need for Labour's plan to increase funding so they aren't dependent on contributions from parents, Labour's Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “By law New...
    Labour | 24-08
  • National applies band-aid to housing crisis
    The Government’s flagship housing announcement is a band-aid approach that will push up prices rather than solve the housing crisis, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “House sales to first home buyers have collapsed as a direct result of the Government’s...
    Labour | 24-08
  • Climate change focus on the now for the future
    A Labour Governmentwill put in place a comprehensive climate change strategy focusing on bothmitigation and adaptation, establish an independent Climate Commission andimplement carbon budgeting, says Labour Climate Change spokesperson MoanaMackey."This is about future-proofing our economy. Making the transition to alow-carbon...
    Labour | 24-08
  • Labour’s 21st century transport pledge
    The next Labour-led Government will create a 21st century transport system for New Zealand that promotes the most efficient and sustainable combination of transport options, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Labour will rebalance the Government's transport spending away from...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Housing under National: the facts
    1.       House prices in Auckland Council valuations indicate Auckland house prices have gone up by one-third over the last three years. (Auckland Council) The average Auckland house price has gone up by nearly $225,000 since 2008, up over $75,000 in...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Labour irons out low income tax issue
    The increasing casualisation of work has led to many New Zealand families being disadvantaged through the tax they pay, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. "Many low paid workers are having to work two or three jobs to make ends meet...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Cornered Government comes out swinging
    The National Government is so desperate to keep its dead-in-the-water expert teachers policy alive, it has refused to rule out forcing schools to participate through legislation, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “John Key today attacked the Educational Institute for...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Pacific people continue to go backwards under National
    A report from Victoria University highlights the fact that Pacific people are continuing to go backwards under a National Government, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “The report shows the largest inequality increases were in smoking, obesity, tertiary...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Wellington transport plan needs to keep moving
    The failure of the Transport Agency to properly look at alternatives to the Basin Reserve flyover is not a good reason for further delays to improving transport in Wellington, Labour MPs Grant Robertson and Annette King say. “The Board of...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Labour’s focus on inequality, kids and better job prospects
    Tackling child poverty and removing barriers to people working part time to enhance their prospects of moving into a fulltime job are highlights of Labour’s Social Development policy. Releasing the policy today, spokesperson Sue Moroney said while part-time work was...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Political staff should give answers under oath
    The Inspector General of Security and Intelligence should use her full statutory powers to question witnesses under oath about the leak of SIS information, says Labour MP Phil Goff. “Leakage of confidential information from the SIS for political purposes is...
    Labour | 21-08
  • High dollar, hands-off Govt sends workers to dole queue
    The loss of up to 100 jobs at Croxley stationery in Auckland is devastating news for their families and the local Avondale community, Labour’s Employment, Skills and Training spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The company’s inability to compete in international markets...
    Labour | 21-08
  • National’s flagship education policy dead in the water
    National’s plan to create executive principals and expert teachers is effectively dead in the water with news that 93 percent of primary teachers have no confidence in the scheme, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The fact that teachers are...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Dunedin will be a knowledge and innovation centre under Labour
    Dunedin will become a knowledge and innovation centre under a Labour Government that will back local businesses, support technology initiatives and fund dynamic regional projects, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Nowhere has the National Government’s short-sightedness been more apparently than...
    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
  • Cunliffe beats Key in First Leaders debate
    I watched the First Leaders debate at the Green Party #GreenRoomNZ, they were very kind to include me and the atmosphere was great. The debate was a resounding victory to Cunliffe. He won Round 1, Round 2, Round 3 and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • LIVE STREAM: The Green Room Leader’s Debate from 6:30pm
    The Green Room will be hosted by media commentator Russel Brown, and will feature Green Co-leaders Metiria Turei and Russel Norman responding to the debate live, along with comment from thought leaders and commentators. ‘The Green Room’ 6pm – 8.30pm...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • How many taxpayer funded staff does John Key need to prepare for a Leaders ...
    John Key is currently at the Auckland Stamford Plaza with 40 staff, 4 undercover police cars and an entire floor booked out in preparation for tonights Leader’s debate. Isn’t 40 staff including coms, flown up to Auckland for a debate...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • A brief word on National Party Rodney MP, Mark Mitchell
    MP considers legal action against Nicky HagerThe National MP says he is considering taking a defamation case after the September 20 election.“Someone needs to be held accountable,” he said. Oh really champ? Brothers and sisters, there is a long way...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Greens advertise on Whaleoil – but not on The Daily Blog?
    PaknSave have shown ethical compass and blocked adverts on Whaleoil, yet the Greens are advertising on Whaleoil, and not The Daily Blog? I would imagine there are far more potential Green voters on The Daily Blog then ever are on...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • It’s about the stupid economy stupid
    In focus group meetings, the sleepy hobbits of NZ by a staggering amount all believe that National are better economic stewards of the country than Labour, that’s why, instead of answering questions about blackmailing MPs, trawling brothels for dirt on...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • Labour Policy vs National Policy
    John Key’s favourite defence spin at the moment is people want to talk about policy and not hear answers on the ethics of trawling brothels, why Slater was given SIS information, blackmailing MPs into standing down, rigging candidate elections and hacking...
    The Daily Blog | 28-08
  • The Green Room live streamed on TDB 6.30pm tonight for First Leaders debate
    The ‘Green Room’ will stream 6.pm tonight on The Daily Blog during the TV One leaders’ debate.Use #GreenRoomNZ to join in. The Green Room will be hosted by media commentator Russel Brown, and will feature Green Co-leaders Metiria Turei and Russel Norman responding...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Manukau East – the next Coalition in action
    A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of opening Voice Up – a youth forum run by young people in Otara. I had been asked as Chair of the Local Board to set the scene, encouraging young people...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – The Big Bang Theory
    It’s a shame that it took a brain injury for me to start seeing things with such startling clarity. The realisation that lawyering, fishing, parenting, selling cars and racing yachts had common themes was stunning. Not perhaps as stunning as...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, how much Key aro...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • 5AA Australia – New Zealand’s Dirty Politics Aftermath and Polls
    MIL OSI – Source: Selwyn Manning – Analysis Headline: 5AA Australia – New Zealand’s Dirty Politics Aftermath and Polls 5AA Australia: On this week’s Across the Ditch bulletin on 5AA Australia, host Peter Godfery and Selwyn Manning discuss the aftermath...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • La’o Hamutuk calls for inquiry into Timor GAP ‘mismanagement’ of oil ...
    The Suai project on the South Coast … “liberated” land but confused communities.Photo: La’o Hamutuk David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. AN INDEPENDENT Timor-Leste development and social justice agency has called for an inquiry into the Timor GAP corporation...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • What Is Nicky Hager?
    WHAT WILL HISTORY MAKE of Nicky Hager? That slight, perpetually boyish, journalist who descends periodically, like the admonishing angel in a medieval mystery play, to trouble our consciences and wreak merry havoc with the orderly conduct of our political affairs....
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Can anyone in msm explain how after Dirty Politics that they all got played...
    Would you not think, that after reading Dirty Politics, that our mainstream media wouldn’t allow themselves to get tricked and played again by the VERY SAME discredited pundits? The best new feature on Radio NZ is their ‘Blog Watch’ and their...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Crusher Collins caught out lying about Privacy Commissioner – is this her...
    Crusher angry. Crusher smash own career. Crusher more angry. You would think that after getting outed as such a nasty, vicious piece of work in Dirty Politics, that Crusher would be scrambling to dial back the lies and manipulations. Apparently...
    The Daily Blog | 27-08
  • Cunliffe vs Key – first leaders debate
    This is your election ‘moderator’ – just one more reason an incoming Government need to sack everyone at TVNZ and reform it into an actual public broadcaster. The first leaders debate happens this Thursday, 7pm on TV One. I have...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – An Old and Honourable Profession
      When Dirty Politics started to reference an ex-prostitute I began to get antsy. My first response was “come on Nicky, we decriminalised in 2003. Its sex worker.” My second response was “Ah oh. Who was it and did they...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Bought and paid for: the dirty politics of climate denial
    Has climate denial in New Zealand been bought and paid for by corporate interests? We already know that the ACT Party’s routine denial is closely linked to the financial support the party receives from wealthy free market fundamentalist Alan Gibbs,...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • If the msm read The Daily Blog, THIS wouldn’t be a surprise – explainin...
    Yawn. How embarrassing for Hamish Rutherford and Andrea Vance, their breathless article today suggests that the idea of Labour and NZ First cutting a  deal over the buy back of assets  is some how new news. Silly mainstream media  journalists. If...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • How much tax does John Key pay compared to a minimum wage worker??
    Yesterday I did some calculations to find out what tax John Key pays compared to a worker on the minimum wage. And I put out this media release for the Mana Movement: MANA Movement Economic Justice spokesperson John Minto is...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Hip hop death threats – the selective outrage of our media
    PM death threat in hip hop songAn Auckland hip-hop crew slammed for releasing a song with lyrics that apparently include a threat to kill Prime Minister John Key are urging young people to enrol to vote. Kill The PM, by...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Watch Slater turn into Key right before your eyes
    Watch Slater turn into Key right before your eyes...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • I don’t always agree with Patrick Gower – but he didn’t deserve this!
    I don’t always agree with Patrick Gower – but he didn’t deserve this weird spear tackle from behind by his own company. I was listening to this interview at the time, and the awkwardness of it must be the worst...
    The Daily Blog | 26-08
  • Is it weird Radio NZ ban me yet still have….
    Is it weird Radio NZ ban me for life because I criticised the Prime Minister yet still have Matthew Hooton, David Farrar and Jordan Williams, 3 of the main protagonists revealed in Dirty Politics as part of their ongoing political...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Christchurch GCSB meeting – why mass surveillance matters in 2014
    This is the video for last weeks GCSB meeting in Christchurch. Don’t forget Nicky Hager’s public meeting Wednesday night in Auckland, TDB will live stream the event in the interests of our democracy. Broadcast starts 7.30pm here on TDB....
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Assange, Greenwald to appear at Town Hall meeting? + KDC is not the hacker ...
    Wikileaks founder and the engineer of revealing some of the largest abuses of power in the modern era, Julian Assange, is rumoured to be appearing at the September 15th Town Hall meeting. Assange would join award winning investigative journalist Glen...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Why Paula Bennett will be the next leader and Hooton throws the Prime Minis...
    I don’t think the public have any idea of the behind the scenes meltdown now occurring within National. There are plenty of decent right wingers who all have ethical standards who have looked at what their leaders have been doing and...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – That Awkward Feeling When Your Campaign Goe...
    Urgh. It’s a thankless and nearly impossible task politically firefighting some days. Somebody (who isn’t you, but who’s in your care, or whom you’ve got a close professional relationship with) does or says something stupid; somebody from the Media’s there...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Dirty politics goes viral
    Join the latest social networking craze this election that every Dog Cat and Jabba is putting on their facebook pages.     Joe Trinder – Ngāti Awa Born and born in Ōtepoti Ōtākou, Ex RNZN he is an Information Technology...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Blogwatch: An open letter to David Farrar: Please, be that guy
    Dear David, In light of  Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics, you wrote a blog entitled ‘Some changes on Kiwiblog’ and you suggested it was time to tighten up ship on your website, saying “I want to improve trust in myself,...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • What The Hell Was That! Reflections on the media’s coverage of the Intern...
    WHAT, EXACTLY, DO WE KNOW about the confrontation outside Internet-Mana’s campaign launch? Well, we know the news media was there in force. We also know Internet-Mana’s media person, Pam Corkery, blew her stack. We know that Corkery’s outburst led the...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • NZ First candidate – homophobic, bennie bashing anti-intellectual clown
    Oh God, apart from Ron Mark, Tracey Martin, Curwen Rolinson and Winston before midday, the woeful cavalcade of political circus freaks NZ First seem to attract has picked up another hitchhiker. This time Epsom candidate Cliff Lyon who said this about Labour… “If...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Nicky Hager Public Meeting LIVESTREAM on The Daily Blog 7.30pm Wednesday 27...
    As part of our commitment to the 2014 Election debate, The Daily Blog will Livestream the Nicky Hager public meeting in Auckland, 7.30pm live from the Mt Eden War Memorial this Wednesday on this site. Doors open at 7pm. It...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Opening Night. It’s like an opera!
    On Saturday night just gone, we collectively experienced one of the premier panegyrys of political pageantry in our three yearly electoral cycle. For one glorious weekend evening every three years, it’s not the All Blacks or some Super 14 team, or...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Unions – what ...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 25-08
  • Timor-Leste’s Parliament handed ‘humiliating’ defeat over harsh media...
    East Timorese journalists raise their hands to approve the Timor-Leste JournalistCode of Ethics in October 2013. Photo: Tempo Semanal/Cafe Pacific   David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. PACIFIC SCOOP reported this week that East Timor’s Appeal Court had scrapped...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • THIS is why we need a public broadcaster!
    The richest 20% of us in NZ own 70% of the wealth, with 18% in the hands of the second richest quintile, and 10% in the hands of the middle quintile. Just 2 per cent was owned by people in...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • A vote for Key is a vote for this
    A vote for Key is a vote for this...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • Why the Secret Intelligence Service feeding Cameron Slater information is s...
    Folks, it doesn’t matter if you are Right or Left, the issue of the Secret Intelligence Service being forced to feed a far right hate speech merchant like Cameron Slater with sensitive information is an ‘us’ issue. The SIS are...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • How lost and irrelevant are ACT?
    So ACT had it’s ‘launch’. Well, what passes as an ACT launch these days. Lot’s of anorak’s with that 1000 yard star and dreams of a Milton Friedman Free Market dancing behind their eyelids all crammed into a room small...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • National Party rowing advert aimed at Gen Xers
    Unkind wags such as myself would suggest that if the above were a real representation of National, it would look more like this…   National know they have the rural mob and the angry provincial vote locked in, with their...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • National Housing propaganda – McGehan Close Revisited
    .   . Housing has become a major, defining issue in New Zealand. We have critical shortages and escalating prices in  in the main centres and falling house values in the regions. The National government has addressed the supply &...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • The boldest, most creative and dynamic policy on employment for two generat...
    If you watched TV news last night you could be forgiven for thinking that a circus was on when Internet MANA launched its election campaign today. The reporting was abysmal but I won’t rehash it here because it’s been described...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • Call for Aaron Bhatnagar’s resignation from govt body
    .   . One of the many sordid “bit”-players in Nicky Hager’s book, “Dirty Politics“, and one of Cameron Slater’s inner-cabal, is businessman, National Party card-carrying cadre,  and former city councillor, Aaron Bhatnagar; . . In 2008, Bhatnagar was caught...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • Internet MANA announce free tertiary education & full employment – me...
    Internet MANA launch their campaign after an extraordinary road tour and after gaining 4% in the Colmar Brunton Poll, today should have been the start point for a momentous occasion  in progressive political history. It was, but sadly most won’t...
    The Daily Blog | 24-08
  • Privilege denies true representation of disability rights
    The human right of people with disabilities in New Zealand has come back into the spotlight by the Human Rights Commission. The report named ‘Making Disability Rights Real’ highlights some of the main issues as being adequate data collection, accessibility,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-08
  • Election TV campaign ads – Opening Night
    . .The infamous National Party ‘Dancing Cossacks’ Attack advert  NZ, 23 August -  The election campaign “kicked off” on Saturday evening, with a one hour “televisual feast”. Party advertisements were broadcast for National, Labour, Greens, NZ First, United Future/Peter Dunne,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-08
  • Blogging vs Journalism vs Politics – The 7 latest revolting revelations
    So we now enter the most dangerous phase for National, the phase where the minutia of detail is so great now, the media have all the ammunition to keep asking questions that clearly show Key isn’t being honest in his...
    The Daily Blog | 23-08
  • A positive story of political co-operation!
    .   . Wellington, NZ, 23 August - The following is a true story and shows how the natural inclination of the rank-and-file of our main left-wing parties is to work together… I’ve been in contact with both the Green...
    The Daily Blog | 23-08
  • Labour’s environment policy welcomed
    The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird says that overall the Labour Party’s newly released environment policy would go a long way towards protecting New Zealand’s natural heritage....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • National: Not our Future Marches across New Zealand
    Three weeks before the election, action is being taken across the country voicing a rejection of the National Government's track record and direction. Rallies are being held in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin to oppose National's...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Tune in to tonight’s debate from 7pm
    The countdown is on! You can watch the first leader’s debate for 2014 tonight, 7pm, on TV One ....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Gamblefree Day 1 September
    It's Gamblefree Day this Monday 1 September, the national awareness day for problem gambling in New Zealand. While traditionally celebrated on the first day of September, many events and activities are held both before and after this day to raise...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Success through captioning should be a given as a Right
    Success through captioning should be a given as a Right per the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Alcohol Marketing Committee Questions Government’s Motives
    An Independent Expert Committee on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship (IECAAS) has been formed out of concern amongst alcohol and public health researchers about the government’s Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship (MFAAS)....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • How Much Higher Can Auckland Prices Go?
    National's plan to liberalise the use of Kiwisaver funds and its proposal to raise ts cheap "Welcome Home" loan thresholds to help buyers purchase a new home has been welcomed by home building companies but attacked as a "welfare scheme...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • OPC submission period extended
    We have extended the submission period for the modified reassessment of a bee control affecting five organophosphate and carbamate insecticides (APP202142)....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Vinay Deobhakta struck off roll of barristers and solicitors
    The New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal has ordered former Tauranga lawyer Vinay Deobhakta to be struck off the roll of barristers and solicitors....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Major parties to front up for Climate Voter election debate
    New Zealand’s main political parties will take part in ‘The Great Climate Voter Debate’ on September 3....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Family violence… too big to be ignored
    As Annah Stretton gears up for her New Zealand Fashion Week show on Thursday she is utilizing her spotlight to help change the face of family violence in this country saying “the problem is far too big to ignore”....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Candidate’s SOS to northern Maori voters: Save our seats!
    (Extract from address by Rev Te Hira Paenga to Kura Hourua Maori Political Leaders hui, in Whangarei this evening)....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Mary O’Neill to Stand for the Alliance in Napier
    The Alliance Party has confirmed Mary O’Neill as the Alliance candidate in the Napier Electorate for the 2014 election....
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • TONIGHT [28/8/14]: The Great Political Comedy Debate
    It's a night for debating. You could stay home frowning at tonight's Leaders debate, or laugh it up with us at BATS!...
    Scoop politics | 28-08
  • Cunliffe against personal responsibility over billboards
    The accusation by David Cunliffe that the Conservative Party is subscribing to a surveillance society by protecting its billboards via the use of motion sensor cameras reveals an anti-personal responsibility position by the about-to-be-retired Leader...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Groundbreaking health and climate conference
    The World Health Organization (WHO) is holding its first conference on climate change and health at its headquarters in Geneva this week, with New Zealand health experts in attendance....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Te Tai Tokerau Party
    Last night at the Leadership Academy of Company A debate Clinton Dearlove announced the creation of a new political party supported by Whanau and Hapu....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Significant fallout from Dirty Politics allegations
    Dirty politics ... costing National up to 3.8% of its pre-publication support Large numbers of New Zealanders are aware of and talking about the issues raised as a result of the publication of Nicky Hager’s book, Dirty Politics, according to...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Colin Craig is “deluded and dangerous” – Act
    “Colin Craig is proposing a radical transformation of our constitution. The Conservatives are proposing to overthrow of one hundred and fifty odd years of parliamentary democracy and replace it with binding referenda” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • WoF law will evict the poor and students from their houses
    The Green warrant of fitness law will evict the poor and students from their houses, if they’re lucky enough to find a place to rent in the first place...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Police response to IPCA report on ‘out of control’ parties
    Police accept today's Independent Police Conduct Authority report recommendations regarding the handling of 'out of control' parties and has already improved its policies and practices for managing these complex and sometimes violent situations....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Review of Police handling of ‘out of control’ parties
    An Independent Police Conduct Authority review has found that Police are working to ensure officers called upon to deal with out of control gatherings in future are better trained to deal with the situations they may face....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Wynyard and NZ Police Announce Ground-breaking Partnership
    Auckland, 28 August 2014 - Wynyard Group, a market leader in advanced crime analytics software and services, today welcomed the New Zealand Police as a long term partner in its Crime Science Research Institute (CSRI)....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Polls confirm dirty politics out and the Conservatives in
    The latest 3News-Reid Research poll has the Conservative Party on 4.6 per cent which means they are virtually on their way to Parliament. Garth McVicar, the Conservative Party candidate for the Napier electorate believes the polls are proof that the...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Toke the Vote 2014: NORML’s guide to NZ cannabis policies
    NORML’s policy, renewed at our recent national conference , is to encourage supporters to vote for parties and candidates who will work to reform our cannabis laws....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Internet Mana List Embodies Modern Aotearoa
    An impressive mix of personal and professional skills, cultural backgrounds and ages marks the release of Internet MANA’s combined party list. “Our list highlights the calibre of talent woven throughout Internet MANA,” said leader Hone Harawira....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • The Dirty Politics Fallout
    Tonight’s 3News-Reid Research poll shows that the Conservative Party is on the verge of making it into the next Parliament, even without an electorate deal with National. The poll, conducted in the week following the release of Nicky Hager’s...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Te reo Māori trending at New Zealand Fashion Week
    Language and fashion express culture and identity so it’s fitting for the Māori Party to launch its te reo Māori policy at New Zealand’s premiere fashion event in Auckland....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Party And Candidate Lists for 2014 Election Released
    The Electoral Commission has released the nominations for the 2014 General Election, with 15 registered political parties and 554 candidates contesting the election....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Take Steps Against Child Poverty with Us!
    TAKE STEPS AGAINST CHILD POVERTY WITH US! Britomart to Aotea Square, Auckland, 11am, Saturday 6 Sept Music * Interactive Art * Stilt Walkers * Great Speakers * Plus more!...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Leading politicians to debate NZ’s role in the world
    Have you ever wondered where New Zealand stands when it comes to issues beyond our borders? Join Amnesty International's North Shore Group on Monday 1 September for a lively cross party debate and the chance to find out the answer...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Political Debate on Family Violence – Livestream
    The Dunedin Collaboration Against Family Violence is happy to announce the upcoming political debate on Family Violence chaired by Professor Nicola Atwool of the University of Otago. Family Violence is a huge problem in our community and we invite representatives...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Politicians ignore 20% of New Zealanders
    Despite 20% of New Zealanders supporting it, none of the parties currently represented in Parliament endorse the legalisation of cannabis....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Company tax rates
    The Op Ed pages of the left-leaning New York Times are full of articles by economists supporting proposals to dramatically lower Company Taxes. These economists are urging the United States to lower company taxes and point to Canada where the...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Stephen Dudley Case: No appeal or review of discharge
    On 8 August 2014 Crown Law received a request from the office of the Auckland Crown Solicitor to consider a Crown appeal against the discharge without conviction entered in respect of M in the High Court at Auckland on 7...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Dudley Family Statement
    “We are utterly devastated at the news regarding the law not allowing for this unjustified discharge without conviction to be appealed....
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Chief Judge: Chief Sized Offender Bias
    “Justice by name, not by nature” states Ruth Money Sensible Sentencing Trust National Spokesperson, of Justice Helen Winkelmann’s decision to discharge without conviction the offender charged with the fatal attack on 15 year old schoolboy Stephen...
    Scoop politics | 27-08
  • Confusion over BPS Reducing Crime and Reoffending Results
    A survey has revealed widespread confusion – even amongst professionals in the justice sector – about what the government’s reducing crime and reoffending progress reports actually mean....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Commission condemns violent attack on Gay Wellingtonians
    The Human Rights Commission has condemned a violent attack on staff and patrons at a gay bar in central Wellington last Friday. GayNZ reported that the alleged attackers were abusive and violent when they realised the bar and the people...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • One down, 12 to go says Community Housing Aotearoa
    The Waimahia Inlet is a step in the right direction for community housing to deliver 20% of New Zealand’s social and affordable housing by 2020, says Community Housing Aotearoa. CHA Director Scott Figenshow says the sector has been set a...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Research considering changes to pedestrian crossing laws
    A University of Canterbury research project has been considering the costs and benefits of a range of potential changes to pedestrian crossing laws that would bring New Zealand in line with the rest of the world....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Dairy farmers and consumers at risk from unapproved GE Grain
    The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) must immediately test all maize and soy for presence of unapproved GE lines coming from the Americas....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • NZ on Air Refuse to Condemn “Kill the PM” Song
    New Zealand On Air has refused to condemn @peace’s 'Kill the PM' song, and will not provide any assurance that no further taxpayer money will be used to support groups that promote violence and political hate. Earlier today the Taxpayers’...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • iPredict Ltd 2014 Election Update #32
    The combined wisdom of iPredict’s 8000 registered traders suggests National has begun a recovery after its prospects crashed last week following the release of Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics . The governing party’s forecast party vote is back...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Juicy carrot for prisoners alarming suggestion – McVicar
    The Conservative Party Justice Spokesman, Garth McVicar says the public will be alarmed to learn that the only tool the Corrections Department has available to get prisoners to behave is to offer them a juicy carrot....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Panel: Fiji’s Return to Democracy
    Fiji’s post-coup elections and their impact in the Pacific o What is the role of the media in the Elections? o How might New Zealand help Fiji on its return to democracy?...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Cross-party consensus on climate change critical
    Senior NZ health professionals welcome recent policy announcements on climate change by major political parties, saying cross-party consensus is critical to address this leading health issue....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Minister of Transport to Attend Election Debate Tomorrow
    Organisers of tomorrow night's transport debate in Auckland are delighted that Minister of Transport Hon. Gerry Brownlee will now be attending....
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Society Applauds Proposed NZ-Wide Risk Assessment
    The Wise Response Society is heartened to see that Labour' just released Climate Change policy includes formal support for the Society's call for a New Zealand-wide Risk Assessment. The Green Party has also formally acknowledged support for the Wise...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
  • Iwi Leaders welcome Labour policy on climate change
    Labour’s policy to stamp out price – gouging by big polluters that has cost New Zealand tax-payers $1.4 billion over the last 3 years and especially impacted low – income Maori households has been welcomed by Dr. Apirana Mahuika, Chairman...
    Scoop politics | 26-08
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