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Blindingly obvious – but secret

Written By: - Date published: 8:22 am, June 17th, 2011 - 119 comments

gerry brownlee as henry VIII

In the damaged suburbs of Christchurch, people’s lives, their emotions, in many cases their finances, are all stuck in limbo.  Residents need to know which areas are going to be written off.  What they don’t need is Gerry Brownlee telling them they are “simplistic”…

Scaremongering on credit cards

Written By: - Date published: 7:22 am, June 16th, 2011 - 100 comments

poodles

The Nats’ blogging poodles are still trying to spread disinformation about credit card details (we have the proof).  Are they just stupid, or do they know they’re spreading lies?  Either way it amounts to the same thing, they are deliberately trying to upset innocent members of the public.  The usual scummy tactics.

The silence of the poodles

Written By: - Date published: 8:31 am, June 15th, 2011 - 87 comments

shushing key

National’s first dirty tricks operation of the 2011 election campaign has ended in an embarrassing own goal.  But they’ll be back with more of the same.  Because the last thing National wants is an election campaign focused on the issues.

Blown up in National’s faces

Written By: - Date published: 6:26 am, June 14th, 2011 - 383 comments

slater key lee

National’s raid on Labour donor data was a grubby, amoral little operation, with no point except to intimidate innocent individuals.

Unfortunately for the Nats it has blown up in their faces.

Another quake

Written By: - Date published: 2:25 pm, June 13th, 2011 - 34 comments

christchurch-quake-hit

The nastiest quakes since February. A 5.5 closely followed by a 6.0. Damage, injuries, utility outages reported.  How much more can Christchurch take?

Thank you donors!

Written By: - Date published: 7:34 am, June 13th, 2011 - 126 comments

labour2011-thumb

At 9am today Slater is probably going to publish a list of some of the donors to the Labour Party.  A big thank you to every person on that list!  To anyone who is angry at being named, please don’t blame some hapless web admin working for Labour. Please blame the people who took this information and illegally made it public.

You can’t make this stuff up

Written By: - Date published: 10:21 am, June 12th, 2011 - 95 comments

log_hollowmen1.jpg

The Nats, a party which runs as a franchise of an Australian company (Crosby Textor), reckon that the presence of a mate from Australia at a regional Labour Party meeting shows that Labour is “subject to foreign influence”.

Encouraging savings the National way

Written By: - Date published: 8:53 am, June 12th, 2011 - 15 comments

piggy bank

Amongst the many vacuous claims made in relation to the last budget, the claim that cuts to KiwiSaver would encourage savings always struck me as the dumbest.  Now the facts are in, and guess what…

Key’s Midas touch

Written By: - Date published: 5:08 pm, June 11th, 2011 - 16 comments

john-key finger new

John Armstrong reckons Key has the “Midas touch”.    Ahh, no.  Or at least, not in the sense that John meant…

Mining II: The Empire Strikes Back

Written By: - Date published: 7:53 am, June 11th, 2011 - 52 comments

mining protest

A little over a year ago the biggest single protest march in this country since 1938 put the final nail in the coffin of the Nats’ amateur hour plans to mine our most precious conservation land.  Or so we thought…

Blame Goff?

Written By: - Date published: 4:14 pm, June 10th, 2011 - 61 comments

darren hughes

There are far more similarities than differences in the Hughes / Goff and Worth / Key affairs, but that doesn’t stop the Right trying to rewrite history and blame Goff!

Drifting

Written By: - Date published: 7:49 am, June 10th, 2011 - 27 comments

drifting-boat

The Nats haven’t got a clue how to run a successful country, and most of the things they do try just make matters worse.  We’re drifting…

Bradford and the Greens

Written By: - Date published: 6:25 am, June 8th, 2011 - 69 comments

sue-bradford

Is it just me, or is Sue Bradford working harder, and getting more media coverage than all of the Greens put together?  She’s not just campaigning for beneficiaries.  Yesterday Bradford came out with a strongly worded attack on the Greens’ positioning for the November election.

Nats testing the waters on eugenics

Written By: - Date published: 8:50 am, June 7th, 2011 - 217 comments

jackboots

John Key “thinks” that parents on the DPB are “breeding for a business”.  Now his government is testing the waters for a eugenics program, to single out these undesirables and forcibly control their fertility.

Time for a cross party consensus on crime

Written By: - Date published: 7:25 am, June 6th, 2011 - 68 comments

racist prison system

All of a sudden National and ACT are sounding vaguely sensible on crime and prisons.  There seems to be a golden opportunity to reach a cross party consensus, and get some evidence driven policy and practice in this area.  Who is going to make the first move?

Celebrity PM withdraws endorsement

Written By: - Date published: 8:05 am, June 5th, 2011 - 11 comments

johnkeybbqbeer

Following the news that “Celebrities who make false statements while endorsing finance companies could now face jail or fines up to $1 million”, we at The Standard have received the following important document, leaked by an internal National Party source…

Hansen on climate change

Written By: - Date published: 8:04 am, June 4th, 2011 - 36 comments

james-hansen

Visionary climate change scientist James Hansen recently toured New Zealand, giving several public lectures.  Here’s a quick summary, and a link to the podcast of the talk he gave at the University of Otago.  As expected, it’s an excellent talk, with some fascinating suggestions about what we the people need to do.  Interesting also to get Hansen’s take on Nick Smith…

How close is too close?

Written By: - Date published: 7:20 am, June 3rd, 2011 - 53 comments

money into pocket

How close should corporate interests be allowed to cuddle up to the government?  When is a gift not a gift?  If it isn’t influence what is it?
The Greens have raised important questions surrounding Westpac and the Nats.

Tell Key to keep Pharmac

Written By: - Date published: 7:25 am, June 2nd, 2011 - 35 comments

medicine

Like the ACC, Pharmac is a Kiwi institution that delivers benefits to everyone at a lower cost than other countries.  National has got ACC on the butcher’s block.  We must make sure that Pharmac doesn’t follow.

Hiding the costs from Auckland

Written By: - Date published: 7:58 pm, June 1st, 2011 - 18 comments

rodney hide laughing

Hide is trying to distance himself from his negligent costing of the Auckland merger, and the consequent $450 million blowout on IT systems alone.  Aucklanders won’t have the satisfaction of kicking him out at the election.  But they can still kick out the arrogant government that steamrollered all over the city, with no regard for good process or public opinion.

Rearranging the deck chairs

Written By: - Date published: 6:10 am, June 1st, 2011 - 41 comments

titanic-sinking

Renaming, merging and splitting agencies is what a government does when it wants to look busy but has no ideas.

Hard to believe it has only taken two and a half years for National to get to this point.

Campbell on welfare reforms

Written By: - Date published: 2:54 pm, May 31st, 2011 - 60 comments

bashing-thumb

Good old fashioned benefit bashing.  Another electoral battle line has been drawn – arm yourself with the facts!

The Right’s MMP conundrum

Written By: - Date published: 9:04 am, May 31st, 2011 - 12 comments

mmp poster3

If there is one silver lining to the cloud of a National government, it is that the MMP referendum has come up on their watch.  It rather cripples their attack lines.

Polls everywhere

Written By: - Date published: 9:29 am, May 30th, 2011 - 87 comments

dart-board

Plenty of polls lately.  Do we really need so many?  Two released yesterday show some closing of the gap between National and Labour – but not nearly enough yet…

Heroes: José Cláudio Ribeiro da Silva and Maria do Espírito Santo

Written By: - Date published: 8:53 am, May 29th, 2011 - 8 comments

da-silva-and-santo

José Cláudio Ribeiro da Silva and Maria do Espírito Santo are heroes.  Like Chico Mendes before them, they have paid for their activism with their lives.

Aucklanders to pay for Nats’ negligence

Written By: - Date published: 8:35 am, May 28th, 2011 - 71 comments

burning pile of money

Auckland ratepayers are going to be stuck with a huge bill for the Nats’ failure to properly cost the merging of  the old Councils’ IT systems.  As Russell Brown puts it – “Someone has to be accountable for this”…

Genuine progress

Written By: - Date published: 7:13 am, May 27th, 2011 - 14 comments

light bulb idea

This story didn’t get any big headlines. This story slipped by almost completely under the radar.  But it’s a very important story. Much more important for New Zealand’s development than the smoke and mirrors of the do-nothing budget.

Who has the ideas?

Written By: - Date published: 7:07 am, May 26th, 2011 - 61 comments

dim bulb

Last week we had National’s budget and Labour’s conference.  A chance for both parties to set out their ideas for the future.  National’s do-nothing budget went down like a lead balloon, while Labour started setting out promising new policy.  Looks like the 2011 election campaign will  be a contest between ideas and schoolboy mockery.

CTU research on minimum wage

Written By: - Date published: 10:28 am, May 25th, 2011 - 24 comments

Helen Kelly

The response to two recent posts here at The Standard have shown what a contentious topic the minimum wage is.  So it’s timely that yesterday saw the release of the CTU’s summary of research on Minimum Wage and Jobs.

Choosing to be poor

Written By: - Date published: 7:32 am, May 24th, 2011 - 24 comments

fork-in-road

Prominent  scientist Sir Paul Callaghan thinks Kiwis are choosing to be poor.  I reckon he’s right too, but we probably disagree about the reasons.

A big gap to close

Written By: - Date published: 9:12 pm, May 23rd, 2011 - 28 comments

dart-board-thumb

The latest Roy Morgan poll is not good reading for the political left.  But it’s not quite time to despair yet!

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    New figures obtained by Labour show the ACC Minister’s botched motor vehicle levy system has resulted in 90,000 vehicles having to be reclassified so far – at a cost of $6 million, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “Nikki Kaye’s… ...
    3 days ago
  • Brutal health cuts confirmed, crucial services suffer
    Chronic under-funding by National has seen the health budget slashed by $1.7 billion in just five years, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A report by Infometrics, commissioned by Labour, shows health funding has been cut in four of the… ...
    3 days ago
  • Meth ring under Serco’s nose
    The news that two Serco inmates have been arrested for helping to run a methamphetamine ring from prison should be the final straw and see their contract cancelled, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “National has stood by Serco despite… ...
    4 days ago
  • Ministers failing women and their own targets
    New figures showing just five Ministers have met the Government’s own reduced targets for appointing women to state sector boards is evidence National is failing Kiwi women, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The Ministry for Women’s 2015 Gender… ...
    4 days ago
  • Charges up for some as funding up for grabs
    A proposal being considered by the Government would see some people having to pay more for health care and district health boards forced to fight amongst themselves to fund regional health services, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Information leaked… ...
    4 days ago
  • Stop experimenting on kids
    The trouble with the Charter school model is that it is a publicly funded experiment on children. The National Government has consistently put its desire to open charter schools ahead of the safety of the children in them, ignoring repeated… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    4 days ago
  • Bank puts the squeeze on mid Canterbury farmers
    News that an unnamed bank in Ashburton has put a receiver on notice over financially vulnerable farmers will send a chill through rural New Zealand, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government needs to work with  New Zealand’s banks… ...
    5 days ago
  • Key is trading away New Zealand land and homes
    John Key yesterday admitted what National dishonestly refused to confirm in Parliament last week – he is trading away New Zealand’s right to control who buys our homes and land, says Opposition leader Andrew Little. “The Prime Minister must now… ...
    5 days ago
  • Razor gang takes scalpel to health
    Plans by the Government to take a scalpel to democratically elected health boards are deceitful and underhand, coming just months after an election during which they were never signalled, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Leaked documents reveals a radical… ...
    5 days ago
  • Spin lines show a department in chaos
    Corrections Spin Doctors sending their place holder lines to journalists instead of responding to serious allegations shows the scale of chaos at the department over the Serco scandal, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “As more and more serious allegations… ...
    7 days ago
  • Court ruling shows law should never have been passed
    A High Court ruling that a law banning prisoners from voting is inconsistent with a properly functioning democracy should be a wake-up call for the Government, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. In an unprecedented ruling Justice Paul Heath has… ...
    1 week ago
  • Judicial Review Gamble Pays Off for Problem Gambling Foundation
    Congratulations are due to the Problem Gambling Foundation (PGFNZ) who have won their legal case around how the Ministry of Health decided to award their contracts for problem gambling services to another service provider. Congratulations are due not just for… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Environmental Protection Agency appoints GE advocate as new CEO
    This week, the Environmental Protection Authority Amendment Bill passed its first reading in Parliament. The Bill puts protection of the environment into the core purpose of the Environmental Protection Authority. This month, Dr Allan Freeth, the former Chief Executive of… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Charanpreet Dhaliwal death demands genuine health and safety reform
    The killing of a security guard on his first night on the job is exactly the kind of incident that National’s watered-down health and safety bill won’t prevent, says Te Atatu MP Phil Twyford. The coronial inquest into 22-year-old Charanpreet… ...
    1 week ago
  • Arbitrary sanctions hit children hardest
    Increasing numbers of single parents are being penalised under a regime that is overly focussed on sanctions rather than getting more people into work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Figures, obtained through Parliamentary questions show 3000 more sanctions,… ...
    1 week ago
  • Hekia just won’t face the facts
    Hekia Parata’s decision to keep troubled Whangaruru Charter school open despite being presented with a catalogue of failure defies belief, goes against official advice and breaks a Government promise to close these schools if they were failing, says Labour’s Education… ...
    1 week ago
  • No more silent witnesses
    Yesterday I attended the launch of a new initiative developed by and for Asian, Middle eastern and African youth to support young people to name and get support if there is domestic violence at home. The impact on children of… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Minister must take responsibility for problem gambling debacle
    The Government’s handling of the Problem Gambling Foundation’s axing in a cost-cutting exercise has been ham-fisted and harmful to some of the most vulnerable people in society, Associate Health Labour spokesperson David Clark says.“Today’s court ruling overturning the axing of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour will not support TPP if it undermines NZ sovereignty
    The Labour Party will not support the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement unless key protections for New Zealanders are met, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.“Labour supports free trade. However, we will not support a TPP agreement that undermines New Zealand’s sovereignty. ...
    1 week ago
  • Coleman can’t ignore latest warnings
    Resident doctors have advised that a severe staffing shortage at North Shore Hospital is putting patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “They say a mismatch between staffing levels and patient workloads at North Shore has… ...
    1 week ago
  • ACC must remove barriers to appeals
    The Government must prioritise removing barriers to justice for ACC claimants following a damning report by Acclaim Otago, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “ACC Minister Nikki Kaye must urgently scrap her flawed plan to remove claimant’s right to redress… ...
    1 week ago
  • Six months’ paid parental leave back on the agenda
    Six months’ paid parental leave is back on the agenda and a step closer to reality for Kiwi parents after Labour’s new Member’s Bill was pulled from today’s ballot, the Bill’s sponsor and Labour MP Sue Moroney says. “My Bill… ...
    1 week ago
  • Sole parents at risk of having no income
    New requirements for sole parents to undertake a reapplication process after a year is likely to mean a large number will face benefit cancellations, but not because they have obtained work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Increasing numbers… ...
    1 week ago
  • Juking the Welfare Stats Again
    Last week the government’s major initiative to combat child poverty (a paltry $25 increase) was exposed for what it is, a lie. The Government, through the Budget this year, claims to be engaging in the child poverty debate, but instead,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • OCR rate cut a result of flagging economy
    The Reserve Bank's decision to cut the Official Cash Rate to 3 per cent shows there is no encore for the so-called 'rock star' economy, says Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.   "Today's interest rate cut comes off the back… ...
    1 week ago
  • Reboot to an innovation economy, an Internet economy and a clean economy
    In my short 33 years on this planet we’ve seen phenomenal technological, economic and social change, and it’s realistic to expect the next 33 will see even more, even faster change. You can see it in the non-descript warehouse near… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    1 week ago
  • Bill that puts the environment into the EPA passes first hurdle
    A Bill that puts the environment squarely into legislation governing the Environmental Protection Authority passed its first reading today, says Meka Whaitiri.  “I introduced this member’s bill as the current law doesn’t actually make protecting the environment a goal of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Key’s KiwiSaver deception exposed
    KiwiSaver statistics released today expose John Key's claim that the cutting of the kickstart payment "will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver” to be duplicitous, says Labour Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “Official… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minimum Wage Amendment Bill to protect contractors
    All New Zealanders should be treated fairly at work. Currently, the law allows non-employment relationships to be used to get around the minimum wage. This is unfair, says Labour MP David Parker. “The Minimum Wage (Contractor Remuneration) Amendment Bill, a… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bill raises bar to protect Kiwi farmland
    The Government’s rubber-stamping of every one of the nearly 400 applications from overseas investors to buy New Zealand farm land over the last three years proves tougher laws are needed, Labour MP Phil Goff says. “In the last term of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Costly flag referendum should be dumped
    John Key must ditch the flag referendum before any more taxpayer money is wasted, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Millions of dollars could be saved if the Prime Minister called a halt to this hugely expensive, and highly unpopular, vanity… ...
    1 week ago
  • Nats letting Serco off scot free
    Government members have prevented Parliament’s Law and Order select committee from getting answers out of a senior Serco director about the fight clubs being run at Mt Eden prisons, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “At today’s Law and Order… ...
    1 week ago
  • Charter school experiment turns into shambles
    The National Government’s charter school experiment has descended into chaos and it’s time for Hekia Parata to stop trying to cover up the full extent of the problems, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The Education Minister must release all… ...
    1 week ago

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