web analytics
The Standard

Because it’s all about “me”

Written By: - Date published: 6:24 pm, October 22nd, 2013 - 22 comments
Categories: benefits, capitalism, child welfare, class war, david cunliffe, housing, paula bennett, poverty, public transport, sustainability, unemployment - Tags:

I was very pleased when David Cunliffe in his speech earlier this month at the CTU conference, talked about moving from a “from a cost-based to a values-based” strategy.  This is something that needs to be developed as part of a wider narrative, that shifts public discourse from an individualistic focus, to one that focuses on valuing all members of society – to a focus on  us all being in this together in the long term.  The kind of findings that were reported in The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better, need to be repeated again and again, in as many ways as possible. What is good for the least well-off in society, is good for all of us.

The 1980s+ escalation of individualistic values resulted in short sighted, short term politicised policies that ultimately damage the wider society.  The focus on the here and now, and how it impacts on “Me” masks the way society is being damaged in the longer term. This focus can be seen in two news items reported on today:  Paula Bennett’s disregard of the risk of negative impacts on children through her welfare reforms; a survey that shows transport is a way bigger issue for Aucklanders than affordable housing.

The Child Poverty Action Group has published a report that shows pressuring parents to get into work and to fulfill various “social obligations” puts the children of beneficiaries at risk.  key’s government can demonise beneficiaries, and fail to provide adequate support for them, because, overall, they are a minority, and for most voters it’s a case of out of sight, out of mind.  Too many people fail to understand how this damages our society, and diminishes us all. As reported in the NZ Herald:

CPAG spokesman Associate Professor Mike O’Brien said the children of beneficiaries were being singled out for different treatment under the Government’s new welfare reforms.

A background study by CPAG on benefit sanctions found the children of beneficiaries were now subject to a set of rules which other children were not required to meet.

The changes risked creating a separate, disadvantaged class of children whose activities were unjustly restricted for reasons beyond their control, Mr O’Brien said.

Under questioning in the House today, Paula Bennett dodged the issue, showing she really doesn’t care enough to properly monitor the impact of her reforms, especially on children.

paula bennett inequality

The NZ Herald also reported today that an digipoll shows Aucklanders care far more about improving transport, especially public transport, than providing more affordable housing.  It’s great to see such a high amount of concern on the transport issue, but worrying that affordable housing is marginalised by such results:

Herald-DigiPoll survey of 500 Super City dwellers found 43.8 per cent ranked transport as the biggest issue facing Auckland.

It was streets ahead of affordable housing, the chief concern of 17.1 per cent of those surveyed, and balancing the city’s budget (3.4 per cent).

Of course transport issues impact on a great number of Aucklanders daily.  The people who daily struggle with issues of no or less than adequate housing, and with pressures on their budget because of the relative high cost, are a smaller number of people.

Affordable housing and better public transport are related issues that impact on us all, as does demonisation of beneficiaries, child poverty, and too high an inequality gap.

The 2009 Guardian review of The Spirit Level sums it up:

Inequality causes shorter, unhealthier and unhappier lives; it increases the rate of teenage pregnancy, violence, obesity, imprisonment and addiction; it destroys relationships between individuals born in the same society but into different classes; and its function as a driver of consumption depletes the planet’s resources.

[…]

The graphs also reveal that it is not just the poor, but whole societies, from top to bottom, that are adversely affected by inequality.

[…]

However, the book does end on an optimistic note, with a transformative, rather than revolutionary, programme for making sick societies more healthy. A society in which all citizens feel free to look each other in the eye can only come into being once those in the lower echelons feel more valued than at present. The authors argue that removal of economic impediments to feeling valued – such as low wages, low benefits and low public spending on education, for instance – will allow a flourishing of human potential.

This is the story that needs to be told again and again, and where I see a values-based approach should guide any economic and financial polices.  It needs to be in political policies and campaigns, but also in

How can we keep telling it in different ways, in different media and on different platforms?  I’m trying to thinking of a really good positive political song about valuing all in society.  I can only think of the protest ones about “neoliberal” values, like this one.

22 comments on “Because it’s all about “me””

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    What is good for the least well-off in society, is good for all of us.

    And the converse:
    What’s good for the rich is bad for all of us.

    • Zorr 1.1

      I dunno Draco – I think the rich could do with a haircut and that’d be good for them… and us… :)

  2. Ad 2

    That slippery-sweet red toffee of “what we all want” coating the bitter apple of neoliberal self interest will take more than one term to resolve into a proper dessert. The Auckland Unitary Plan tells me self interest beats strategic planning hands down so var. Common interest is going to take many years and smart policy to turn. We are seriously self-involved now.

  3. The changes risked creating a separate, disadvantaged class of children…

    Too late – wasters have already created a separate, disadvantaged class of children. The question is what to do about it now it’s happened, not how to avoid it happening – it’s way too late for that. O’Brien seems to be still living in the 1980s.

    • QoT 3.1

      Because beneficiaries deliberately choose to have children, specifically to raise them in poverty, because that’s how evil they are. :roll:

      • Mike S 3.1.1

        :xD:

        Yeah and it’s a lifestyle choice, all those bludgers choosing to live the highlife on my hard earned tax dollars instead of getting off their lazy arses and working for a change.

    • miravox 3.2

      “The question is what to do about it now it’s happened,”

      You can tramp them down or work with them to improve their circumstances. The US/UK/NZ version of the tramp down doesn’t work. Time to try another modell… Such as one of education, support and finance. You know, what Paula Benefit and John Key’s mother got. And what I got back in the ’70s when I was a 16 year-old single mum with no adult support.

      I’m pretty sure I’ve seen you restate your opinion of the ‘wasters’ over and over again, with bugger-all suggestions to improve the chances of these kids. Me? – I’m living proof of what works along with Paula, John and many others – and it’s not greater inequality that punishes people for circumstances they were born into.

  4. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen you restate your opinion of the ‘wasters’ over and over again…

    Yep. As long as Standard authors write posts in which the production of children by people without the means, ability or even inclination to raise them is treated as something to be supported and encouraged, I’ll write comments suggesting otherwise.

    …with bugger-all suggestions to improve the chances of these kids.

    I don’t see much that can be done for these kids, short of intensive management by servants of government (which carries its own risks, not to mention horrendous expense). Producing fewer of them in the first place would be a good thing, but CPAG also seems vehemently opposed to any measures along those lines.

    …education, support and finance… what I got back in the ’70s when I was a 16 year-old single mum with no adult support.

    No doubt you are living proof of the benefit of that, just as I’m living proof of the benefit of providing free university education. Thing is, both those things are only sustainable when the numbers involved are small. When you were a single mother and I was a student 30-40 years ago, the numbers of others like us were in the thousands – now in each case the numbers are in six figures and taxpayers are less able to provide the lifestyle to which we were able to become accustomed. When people like us become the norm, instead of a tiny minority, the number of people working for a living to pay for it all just doesn’t cover it any more.

    • Tat Loo 4.1

      Child poverty rates and youth unemployment could be halved by spending approx 0.5% of GDP.

      It’s an easy fix, PM. People who want a full time job should be provided with one, and they should be expected to perform it to a high standard.

      Problem solved.

    • karol 4.2

      This sounds like a kind of eugenics argument.

      Having children is not always planned.

      People often have children prior to going on benefits – life circumstances are not always that predictable.

      Why not stop the wealthy having children. They just pass their wealth onto their children who have actually done nothing to deserve it. Many develop an entitlement attitude, contributing to the demonisation and disadvantaging of those on low incomes.

      Show me the jobs.

    • miravox 4.3

      So still nothing, just wailing about stopping ‘them’ breeding.

      “No doubt you are living proof of the benefit of that, just as I’m living proof of the benefit of providing free university education. Thing is, both those things are only sustainable when the numbers involved are small”

      Sorry. I just find it really weird that you recognise the problems of people languishing on benefits began in the ’80s yet you don’t seem to recognise that more of the same medicine will only increase the number of dysfunctional families. Economic and social conditions are the greater drivers of dysfunction, that individuals (i.e. individuals will behave differently in different conditions), imo.

      As long as there is poverty and alienated people these dysfunctional families will exist in numbers that reflect those social norms. All that the benefits have done in this sense is made it easier to count them. I’ve yet to see a count of the kids of the working poor living in dire, dysfunctional conditions and likely to produce a new generation of the same – those figures would be a bit to hard for some people to take, I reckon. Of course, I agree that there are the utter bastards and the totally careless, but they are few in relation to those who would be able to make better decisions for their kids (even not having them) if the world was a lot more inclusive and equitable.

  5. Having children is not always planned.

    It’s never planned if you regard it as just shit that happens.

    Why not stop the wealthy having children.

    Because their kids aren’t 13 times more likely to suffer abuse? Anyway, nobody mentioned stopping anyone having children.

    • greywarbler 5.1

      PM
      It’s never planned if you regard it as just shit that happens.
      People who can use that sort of language about women having babies about whom they express concern are not the sort that should have anything to do with solving any problems. It’s a callous mindset and inhuman, more economic man or woman than hu-man. And the branch is neo-liberal, moralistic, utilitarian economics at that.

      • Psycho Milt 5.1.1

        People who can use that sort of language about women having babies about whom they express concern are not the sort that should have anything to do with solving any problems.

        We have a significant number of people for whom children are exactly that, and who produce a significant number of children each as a consequence. Describing the circumstances of these children using only self-delusional euphemisms might make you feel better, but others aren’t compelled to join in.

        • greywarbler 5.1.1.1

          PM
          I say again.
          It’s a callous mindset and inhuman, more economic man or woman than hu-man.
          And the attitude does not enable any pro-active reasonable action, just simple-minded reaction often behaviour that diminishes our perceived status as highly intelligent beings.

        • ak 5.1.1.2

          We have a significant number of people for whom children are exactly that,

          You poor beggar. When the need to hate is this strong, it’s usually terminal. Get help, lad.

          • Psycho Milt 5.1.1.2.1

            It’s a callous mindset and inhuman, more economic man or woman than hu-man.

            It is indeed. How people can be like that I don’t know, but that’s no reason to pretend it doesn’t exist.

  6. greywarbler 6

    Thinking about the way that this government is behaving to one group of children which they would not consider with another group. This reminds me of the stories that have come out about Britain I think mostly after WW2. Children were sent out in thousands to Australia some of whom were told their mothers were dead, untruthfully.

    There is an attitude amongst adult society in many countries that denigrates children of ‘broken’ or non-conforming homes., including here. A little blonde girl was taken on by a Gipsy couple, now in Greece. They say they were given her by a woman in Bulgaria who couldn’t look after her. Now she has been taken from them and they are automatically viewed with grave suspicion of mistreatment. No doubt she considers them her father and mother and if they have been caring, will be in distress and bewilderment feeling abandoned.

    The authorities can be worse than parents with all their faults, either biological or in loco parentis.
    Government needs to clean up their act more than parents. Support parents to do a good job, steer them the right way, and half of the nation’s ills will vanish.

  7. Sable 7

    I’m sorry but I have little more faith in Labour than National. The current mess we are in is down to both of these parties and I really think its time for then to go. This is starting to happen with the Greens but I hope we will see others come about that replace these old, corrupt, complacent parties.

    • greywarbler 7.1

      Sable
      Throwing all the toys out can’t be done. It implies that more and better will come along as replacements. This is what the Right Wing Labourites thought and did with their policies. They personally may have been satisfied they did good but the replacements were not a universal fit.

      Good things take time, they do not appear out of the hat when the magician waves his or her stick. There have been years of hard work building policy and controls to overcome the greed and self interest that abounds in those who have acquired power and resources for themselves.

      Trying to create something entirely new now is out. There isn’t time!!! Work with what we have. Rummage through the political op shop and look for treasures that will stand alteration and suit the new conditions. Seek out past examples of quality and find people who know how to use the old tried and true techniques to create, patch or mend an entity for today’s needs. One that will endure against ‘the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune’.

      • finbar 7.1.1

        But Warbler,the Nats are taking us back to the bad old days, where working rights were non existent,taxation of the wealthy was frowned upon,health, education, housing, and a healthy diet was only afforded to those better off,and that regress of social progress seems to be working for them,as they cry, we are a progressive 21st century realist capitalist government.

  8. Mike S 8

    “A Herald-DigiPoll survey of 500 Super City dwellers found 43.8 per cent ranked transport as the biggest issue facing Auckland.”

    Sorry, but that’s either wrongly reported or the poll results were somehow wrongly counted or even deliberately altered.

    Everyone I’ve talked to and no doubt a large majority of us rank berm mowing as the biggest issue facing Auckland. I mean, after weeks and weeks, there’s still letters to the herald appearing almost daily regarding berms, berms have been on the main current affairs news hour as a headlining story, on the front page of the National newspaper.

    I have a friend who 20 years ago arrived here as a refugee from Iraq. Watching him trying to explain to his relatives on skype how berms are such a major issue for us Aucklanders puts both of us into such hysterics that it physically really really hurts!

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Key’s refugee response at odds with Kiwi traditions
    John Key’s response to the current refugee crisis is out of step with New Zealand’s tradition of pulling its weight internationally, says Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer. “In 1999, under a National Government, New Zealand accepted more than 400… ...
    18 mins ago
  • John Key: where is your conscience?
    The Prime Minister’s refusal to raise the refugee quota in the face of an international humanitarian crisis shows a lack of empathy and moral leadership, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “There are times in politics when you are faced with… ...
    1 hour ago
  • Report highlights National’s poor funding decisions
    The Government’s poor coordination between its transport strategy and the needs of the regions has been highlighted in a new report by Local Government New Zealand, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Local Government was forced to write its Mobilising… ...
    20 hours ago
  • Government wakes up to Opotiki Harbour
    John Key is expected to finally announce Government support next week for the Opotiki Harbour development, says Labour Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. "While it is astonishing that it has taken seven years for the Government to commit to this… ...
    23 hours ago
  • New figures show speculators rampant
    New figures released by the Reserve Bank show there’s been an explosion in mortgage lending with most of the growth going to property investors, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Reserve Bank data shows mortgage lending was up 6 per… ...
    2 days ago
  • Spring is here – not pollen your leg
    It’s the first day of spring, and many people will be thinking about getting stuck into the weeds in the garden ready for planting. This year September is also Bee Aware Month. While there is a lack of movement from… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 days ago
  • Government must do more to help global refugee crisis
    John Key must urgently increase our refugee quota and let New Zealand play its part in helping address the tragic humanitarian crisis unfolding around the world, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “The refugee crisis in countries like Lebanon and Austria… ...
    2 days ago
  • The latest equal pay case – Go the Midwives
    ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 days ago
  • Key’s threat to veto premature
    John Key’s threat that he might use a financial veto against the Bill that will introduce 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave is premature and based on inflated costings, says the bill’s sponsor, Labour ‘s Sue Moroney.  “The Government keeps saying… ...
    3 days ago
  • Reflections on the plastic bag tour
    After a marathon public tour around New Zealand that took me to 29 different places around New Zealand from the far north of Kaitaia to the deep south of Invercargill to talk about phasing out plastic bag use, I wanted… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    3 days ago
  • Labour celebrates Tongan language and diversity
    Tongan Language Week is a timely reminder of the importance and beauty of our Pacific culture, identity and language in New Zealand, says our first Tongan born, Tongan speaking MP Jenny Salesa.  The theme for Tongan Language Week in 2015… ...
    3 days ago
  • Privatising CYF about ideology not care
    John Key’s suggestions today that Child Youth and Family could be privatized will be a terrifying thought for New Zealanders already dealing with the mess created in private prisons and plans to sell our state houses to Australians, Opposition Leader… ...
    3 days ago
  • Govt must make most of Jetstar competition
    Government agencies should pledge to always buy “the best fare of the day” to maximise competition between Jetstar and Air New Zealand and ensure savings for taxpayers while boosting services to regional New Zealand, Labour’s Transport Spokesperson Phil Twyford says.… ...
    3 days ago
  • Time for inquiry into petrol margins
    It’s time for an inquiry into petrol companies as margins are once again at the high levels that prompted concerns late last year, says Labour's Energy Spokesperson Stuart Nash. "Over the December January holiday period, petrol importer margins jumped to… ...
    6 days ago
  • More talk as Auckland congestion worsens
    The main impact of the Government’s agreement with Auckland Council today will be simply to delay still further decisions needed to relieve the city’s traffic congestion, says Labour’s Auckland Issues Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “Government has been aware for more than… ...
    7 days ago
  • Serco inquiry extended
    A two month delay to the Government investigation into prison fight clubs shows the extent of problems within the Serco circus, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “My office received a tsunami of complaints so I’m not surprised the terms… ...
    7 days ago
  • Truck Shops ignore consumer laws
    A damning Commerce Commission report out today highlights the failure of the Government to protect poor and vulnerable families from unscrupulous truck shops, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson David Shearer. “The report found that 31 out of 32 firms it… ...
    7 days ago
  • Taihoa at Ihumatao says Labour
    Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford has called on the Government to rethink its controversial Special Housing Area in Māngere. Auckland Council is today meeting to discuss the development which borders the Otuataua Stonefield Historic Reserve. This project is to get… ...
    1 week ago
  • Figures suggest National deliberately excluded farming
    Figures showing the dairy industry would be categorised as high risk if there were a further five severe injuries within a year, strongly suggests National designed its flawed system to deliberately exclude farming, Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bleak report on the state of our children
    A damning conclusion by the Children’s Commissioner today that ‘we don’t know if children are better off as a result of state intervention, but the indications are not good’ should make fixing CYFs a top priority for this Government, says… ...
    1 week ago
  • Dodgy data used to justify axing KiwiSaver kickstart
    National’s agenda to run down KiwiSaver has become even clearer from a scathing critique of the Government’s justification for axing the $1000 kickstart, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Since National came to power they have not only continually undermined… ...
    1 week ago
  • Unsecure website risks Ashley MoBIEson hack
    Experts have raised security concerns that vulnerabilities in MoBIE’s half million-dollar website could lead to a possible Ashley Maddison-style hack, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “The real issue here is not what data is immediately available, but what… ...
    1 week ago
  • Democracy still the loser in Canterbury
    The Government has demonstrated once again how arrogant and out of touch it is in denying Cantabrians the same democratic rights as the rest of the country, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Megan Woods.  “The Environment Canterbury Bill which has been… ...
    1 week ago
  • Waiver cost still a mystery
    The Government still has no idea what it’s going to cost community and voluntary groups to get a waiver from the fees police will charge to carry out checks on their staff and volunteers, says Labour’s Community and Voluntary spokesperson… ...
    1 week ago
  • China exports fall 27 per cent in a year
    Exports to China have fallen by 27 per cent over the last 12 months - showing that the looming economic slowdown should have been expected by the Government, says Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark. “The Chinese economic slowdown should… ...
    1 week ago
  • National should support all families for 26 weeks
    Families with multiple babies, and those born prematurely or with disabilities, are the winners from moves to extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks but the Government must give all babies the same head start in life, Labour’s spokesperson for… ...
    1 week ago
  • National’s health and safety shambles puts school camps at risk
    Reports that schools are considering scrapping student camps and tearing out playgrounds highlights just how badly National has managed its health and safety reforms, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Schools have been left completely in the dark about the… ...
    1 week ago
  • National’s asset stripping agenda hits schools
    National’s fire-sale of school houses and land is short-sighted, mean-spirited, and will have huge unintended consequences that we will pay for in years to come, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. Documents obtained by Labour show the Ministry of Education… ...
    1 week ago
  • Takahe massacre supposed to get all New Zealanders involved in conservation
    The Minister’s claim that a  botched cull of one of New Zealand’s rarest birds was a way of getting all New Zealanders involved in conservation is offensive and ludicrous, Labour’s conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson says.  “An email from Minister Maggie… ...
    1 week ago
  • Serco circus rolls on with revelations of fight club practice
    Further revelations that a Serco prison guard was coaching inmates on fight club techniques confirms a fully independent inquiry needs to take place, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The Minister’s statement today that a guard was coaching sparring techniques… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government targets put ahead of students’ education
    The Government must urgently reassess the way it sets NCEA targets after a new report found they are forcing schools to “credit farm” and are undermining the qualification, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “A PPTA report released today says… ...
    1 week ago
  • ER patients in corridors as health cuts bite
    Patients are being forced to wait for hours on beds in corridors as cash strapped hospitals struggle to keep up with budget cuts, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “People coming to the emergency room and being forced to wait… ...
    1 week ago
  • Not too late to fix Health and Safety for New Zealand’s workers
    The Government and its minor party supporters are showing an arrogant disregard for workers’ lives by not agreeing to a cross-party solution to the botched Health and Safety bill, Opposition leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday I wrote to the Prime… ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Council of Infrastructure Development
    Tēnā Kotou Katoa. Thank you so much for having me along to speak today. Can I begin by acknowledging John Rae, the President, and Stephen Selwood, the chief executive of the Council for Infrastructure Development. ...
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank points finger at Govt inaction
    In scathing criticism of the Government’s inaction, the Reserve Bank says Auckland housing supply is growing nowhere near fast enough to make a dent the housing shortage, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Reserve Bank deputy governor Grant Spencer today… ...
    1 week ago
  • Chickens come home to roost on climate change
    The Government’s gutting of the Emissions Trading Scheme has caused foresters to leave and emissions to rise, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods. “The release of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Facts and Figures Report for 2014 on the ETS… ...
    1 week ago
  • Website adds to long list of big spends at MBIE
    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s $560,000 outlay on its new website is further evidence of excessive spending by Steven Joyce on his pet project super ministry, Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says.  “Hot on the heels of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Brownlee warned over EQC repairs but ignored them
    Gerry Brownlee was warned that EQC’s underfloor repairs weren’t being done properly by industry experts, the cross party working group and in public but he arrogantly ignored them all, says Labour’s Earthquake Commission spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove.  “Today’s apology and commitment… ...
    1 week ago
  • Serco wants in on state house sell off
    The Government must keep scandal plagued outsourcing company Serco away from our state housing after their disastrous record running Mt Eden prison, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Today it has emerged that at the same time Serco was under… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Come clean on Pasifika education centre
    Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iinga needs to come clean and tell the Pasifika communities if he’s working to save the Pasifika Education Centre or shut it down, Labour’s Pasifika spokesperson Su’a William Sio says.  “I’m gutted the Pasifika Education Centre funding… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for NZTA to work on alternatives to flyover
    The High Court decision rejecting the New Zealand Transport Agency’s attempts to build the Basin Reserve flyover must now mean that NZTA finally works with the community on other options for transport solutions in Wellington, Grant Robertson and Annette King… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Shiny new system leads to record truancy
    Record high truancy rates shows the Government’s much-vaunted new attendance system is an abysmal failure, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Data released today shows truancy rates have spiked more than 15 per cent in 2014 and are now at… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Woodhouse wrong about quarries
      The Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Michael Woodhouse was wrong yesterday when he said limestone quarries were covered by the farcical Health and Safety legislation, says Labour’s Associate Labour spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “He said he ‘understood’ limestone quarries… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Taxpayers money spent on culling one of our rarest birds
    It beggars belief that four endangered takahe were killed by incompetent cullers contracted to the Department of Conservation and the Minister must explain this wanton destruction, says Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It must not be forgotten that there are only… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing NZ must immediately move family
    Housing New Zealand must immediately move a Glen Innes family whose son contracted serious and potentially fatal health problems from the appalling condition of their state house, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Te Ao Marama Wensor and community workers… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • No understanding of the value of overseas investment
     The Government has now admitted it has absolutely no idea of the actual value of foreign investment in New Zealand, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “It is crucial that the Government starts to understand just what this overseas… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another bridges bribe from Simon Bridges
    Simon Bridges is embroiled in another bridges-for-votes controversy after admitting funding for a replacement bridge in Queenstown is “very much about… the 2017 election”, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Transport Minister is today reported as telling Queenstown locals… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Saudi tender process reeks of SkyCity approach
    The tender process for the $6m investment in a Saudi sheep farm reeks like the SkyCity convention centre deal and once again contravenes the government’s own procurement rules, says Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson David Parker. “The $6m contract… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Maori Party should stand up for workers
    The Government’s proposed Health and Safety Reform Bill does not go far enough to protect those in specific industries with the highest rates of workplace deaths, says Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “We are told that Maori workers are more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister must explain budget blowout
    Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell must explain a budget blow out at Te Puni Kokiri, after the organisation spent more than 2.5 million dollars over their budget for contractors, says Labour’s Associate Māori Development spokesperson Peeni Henare.  “For the… ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere