web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

Cone of Silence?

Written By: - Date published: 1:09 pm, September 3rd, 2012 - 101 comments
Categories: benefits, david shearer, grant robertson, labour, welfare - Tags: , , ,

A couple of weeks back I wrote a post offering Shearer, Robertson or Pagani an opportunity to justify their (more or less) blanket attack on beneficiaries. At the time, I didn’t realise Pagani had been banned from ‘the standard’ for (from memory) being an idiot . So, okay – he’s not able to respond via ‘the standard’. But as for Robertson and Shearer, well…still waiting. And the post I wrote certainly wasn’t the only one on the blogosphere to cover the matter. Giovanni Tiso who writes ‘ Bat Bean Beam’ wrote a post too and had a tweeted exchange with Robertson who acknowledged that he had read ‘thestandard’ post. But what Robertson didn’t do was offer any explanation or justification for the message that had come from the Labour Party and that he was partly responsible for. He simply sought to excuse himself…to run for cover behind the fact that he helped his constituents, some of whom would be on a Sickness Benefit.  But you know, I’ve no doubt that someone like Benson-Pope also helped some of his constituents who were on a Sickness Benefit – even as he was preparing legislation (Temporary Additional Support) that amounted to the largest reduction in benefit payments since Ruth Richardson.

What makes me curious though, is whether there has been any substantive response (ie, not a running for cover response) from either of these gentlemen anywhere that any one is aware of. I know some people sent my post to their local mp’s asking for a response. Were any forthcoming? I mean, this is the party that claims in press release after press release that they are ‘keen to receive feedback’ on ideas that they will ‘working on in the coming weeks and months’.

So wtf?!

Is ‘half’ the blogosphere being up in arms about a mentality that will inform at least some of  those ideas not feedback?  Or when they say they want feedback, do they merely mean they want people to talk to the proverbial brick wall rather than enter into any dialogue?

So please. If you’re aware of any responses to concerns raised by any number of posts on numerous blogs following Shearer’s speech to that Grey Power meeting, will you post links or whatever in the comments?

Cheers.

[lprent: I will unban John Pagani in the interests of discourse. Hopefully he will avoid making up his own stories about what authors said and confine himself to what they did write.

He has been making comments about it in other semi-private media like facebook. Most of what I have seen concentrates on smearing opponents and avoids the actual issue. So I wouldn't hold out much hope of any rational debate from him. ]

101 comments on “Cone of Silence?”

  1. captain hook 1

    when you have a party fixated on the politics of sex and a whole gang of skool teachers who have never done a tap of real work and are experts in pandering and mollycoddling to infantilised consumers then what do you expect?

    • Qdig 1.1

      Mr. Hook, I take it you have never done a tap of teaching? I very good family friend of ours is a teacher, and she has worked her arse off.. Good teachers do a hell of a lot more for society, and are for more important than lawyers, bankers or financial advisers.

      You want to see someone age? get them to teach for ten years, that’s why most do a stint and leave for greener pastures.

      It’s a stressful environment, and a badly underpaid one. In no way should they be compared to childish, pap talking, spineless politicians, in any party.

      Hard work for your own benefit is in no way comparable to hard work for the benefit of society as a whole.

      Thank you very much.

      Q

  2. Shearer’s explanation – excellently forced out of him by Aaron Hawkins of Radio One in Dunedin – is transcribed as an addendum at the bottom of the post of mine you linked to.

    • Bill 2.1

      Yeah, I saw that Giovanni. But that’s not so much a response as a lot of ducking and diving for cover. Either they stand by what they said and justify it or they apologise. Unreservedly. Coming out with incoherent shit that claims what they meant/said wasn’t really what they meant/said doesn’t cut it, imo.

      • I sincerely doubt you’re going to get any more than that. Even if they realised it was a misstep (big “if”) they’ll just want to move on now.

        • gobsmacked 2.1.1.1

          The best we could get is “I did nothing wrong, but I won’t do it again.”

          Quite apart from the moral aspects, it really is strategic stupidity. Lots of supporters (current or potential) pissed off, and no evidence at all that any target voters were reached. So it wasn’t a “lose some, win some” trade-off – it was a self-inflicted defeat, not even a draw.

        • Bill 2.1.1.2

          I’m aware that given short news cycles and memory holes, they’ll have decided two weeks ago to keep their heads down and wait for things to blow over. And I’m aware that will probably happen/has happened (although referring to roof painters seems to have become a bit of a meme in some quarters).

          And I meant to put this post up last week on the tail end of stuff, but hey…their silence is an implicit admission they stand by what was said.

          Meantime, although the specific focus of bashing those on welfare entitlements has ‘blown over’, I’m wondering how much medium/long term damage these clowns have caused in terms of the level of trust and reliability people feel they can invest in the Labour Party.

          And I must admit, in this instance, it would have been nice to do a post that drew absolutely no comments :-)

          Anyway…

          • Giovanni Tiso 2.1.1.2.1

            I’m totally with you on this, that’s why I kept asking Shearer whether his anecdote was even true – to a resounding silence. It’s not an episode that’s worth forgetting about for the sake of unity and the party. Quite the opposite in fact.

          • lprent 2.1.1.2.2

            Well I’m still pissed about that simple “anecdote”. What with moving house and the subsequent exhaustion I haven’t finished the post that I was writing on the topic from my perspective. I’ll put it up in a few days just to keep roasting the caucuses balls over the flame….

            It really is a core issue for the Labour party. Scapegoating the most vulnerable sections of the community by using exceptions to smear the majority for electoral support isn’t something that I support. It is also something that I’m not going to support any party that does by the individuals stating such stupidities in policy speeches.

  3. fisiani 3

    When did saying that people can can work,ought to work, become a blanket attack on beneficiaries?
    I cannot see the link.

    • gobsmacked 3.1

      You’re not supposed to see it, you’re supposed to hear it. Woof woof!

    • Uturn 3.2

      When?

      Has its origins circa 1860, but I assume you mean later examples in NZ, in which case, how does early 1970’s suit you?

      Why can’t you see the link?

      Probably through an over-reliance on certain cognitive functions.

    • blue leopard 3.3

      The message that Mr Shearer gave may well have been intended to be one of “those who can work, ought to work”; however he chose a poor example if that what he was intending because most of us realise that the guy at the focus of the criticism was being paid to paint his landlord’s roof at the time of the observation.

      ….and thus the ACTUAL message he sent out was that if you are on a benefit, ensure that you are not seen out and about being active, it was a call to those on benefits to stay indoors and do nothing..well, not without the curtains drawn….because otherwise your belligerent neighbour might get hurt feelings.

      Mr Shearers message was one of a warning in time to halt on the path of evil for the additional concern that it might also have the devastating effect of allowing other more positive neighbours to see that you are motivated and have skills and they might end up offering you more work-

      …and we CAN”T be having that now….it may be well and good for the beneficiary involved, however we can’t be having people currently unemployed acting in a way that might lead them to employment; what in heaven’s name would our two main political parties have to discuss if everyone ended up with jobs??

      Hell! they might have to start thinking about political approaches that encourage unity and wellbeing in our communities; instead of creating division.

      Horror!

    • Dr Terry 3.4

      fisiani. Has it not yet occurred to you that for a majority of benefiiciaries there is NO WORK AVAILABLE (are these words big enough for you to see?)

      • Tazirev 3.4.1

        “There are none so blind as those who will not see.” so it doesn’t matter how big the words are

      • Bob 3.4.2

        If there is no work available, shouldn’t he be on the Unemployment Benefit, not the sickness benefit? It may sound like symantics, but the difference is, no-one at Work and Income will be helping him find work on the sickness benefit.

        • Draco T Bastard 3.4.2.1

          That makes even less sense than what Fisiani said.

        • blue leopard 3.4.2.2

          @ Bob

          Your question does make sense. Yes, if someone is able to work they are meant to be on the unemployment benefit. People with limited/short term work incapability go on the sickness, people with long term limitations go on the invalids benefit. (Is my understanding)

          However recent changes mean that people on the sickness are being required to look for work too. And the recent push to pressure such, in the face of increasing unemployment is a tad frustrating and what I believe Dr Terry to be referring too.

          If a person with a back issue, which causes a limited work ability goes to a job interview in competition with fully healthy people, at a time when job opportunities are scarce, it simply leads to a lot of rejection for the sickness beneficiary and loss of confidence and no uptake of work. It would be a different story if there was a wealth of jobs around.

  4. Raymond A Francis 4

    Like others I can’t see how a (clumsy) story about someone ripping off the tax payer can be considered a “blanket attack on beneficiaries”

    So “Bill” are you trying to tell us that you don’t know anybody ripping the system off and do you think that is ok
    Because I don’t think it is ok, on the other hand I certainly don’t worry about it as there are already people paid to do something about it and they aren’t all National party MPs

    • gobsmacked 4.1

      But Raymond, the whole problem is that we can argue what Shearer really meant forever … because he won’t say anything. At all.

      If he had a point, he should make it. But he won’t.

    • We’ve come to expect so little of political speeches that we read them as little more than impromptu yarns, when they are anything but. The anecdote was put there, at the beginning of the speech, to position Shearer and Labour politically, as a leader and a party who won’t be soft on welfare. This would be unbecoming of a left-wing politician at the best of times, but is especially galling and cowardly during the most sustained attack on welfare since Ruth Richardson. Shearer says “I don’t care if it’s a millionaire not paying his taxes or a person on a benefit who shouldn’t be getting one…”, but it’s the latter he chose for his little story, and there is nothing whatsoever that is casual about it.

      Bill’s original post really was very good. This comment from just saying was also eloquent:

      “Please don’t continue to insult me with your disingenuous crap about “we never said all sickness beneficiaries are bludgers”. You set the dogs onto people like me deliberately, each one of you, for personal gain, and Paula Bennett is better than every one of you because when she does the same, because she only goes through the motions of pretending she hasn’t. It’s not like she expects anyone to believe her.”

    • Carol 4.3

      A Labour party, or any party of the left, should be focusing on the real problem for all of us: the wealth/income gap, the way the wealthy and powerful have skewed the system in their favour, and the far more destructive and costly rorts carried out by some of the most well-off in society.

      Both National and Labour have continued tightening up on things for the beneficiaries in recent decades, so now they have only really a small target to aim at. Bennie-bashing is about smearing all beneficiaries as a scapegoat, masking and diverting from the real problems in the country (and the world).

    • Bill 4.4

      Shearer’s anecdote assumed guilt, Raymond. Geddit?

      As for your faux concern about people ripping off the system…is there a qualitive difference between a person struggling financially because of the constraints placed on them by the system showing a bit of initiative and earning an illegal $20 or $40 from time to time and a financially comfortable person paying someone else to find tax loopholes or construct trusts just because?

      Maybe not, in your world.

    • Dr Terry 4.5

      Raymond, you call somebody “clumsy”? Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!!

    • Draco T Bastard 4.6

      Like others I can’t see how a (clumsy) story about someone ripping off the tax payer can be considered a “blanket attack on beneficiaries”

      It was a blanket attack because there was no proof that the guy on the roof was ripping off the taxpayer.

    • QoT 4.7

      someone ripping off the tax payer

      [citation needed] (which is kind of the entire fucking point, Raymond)

    • lprent 4.8

      Raymond – you do realise that there was zero evidence offered in the speech to indicate that the sickness beneficiary was ripping off anything?

      Nothing to indicate that the neighbour was capable of making a medical diagnosis from the other side of the street. Did he have access to medical records? To the case file from WINZ? There was no information even how often or long he’d observed this poor bastard on the roof, what his injury was, or what his capabilities were.

      Basically it was a pile of crap from a irritated neighbour and somehow Shearer’s speech made the assumption he was correct to make it because it was about ‘fairness’. Perhaps he and you should look at the concept of ‘fairness’ a bit more and extend it beyond thinking purely about about how you think it was…

      There is absolutely no indication that David Shearer or his staff did any work to find out anything about this person – yet somehow he was put up as example in front of a political audience as an example of fairness in the welfare system by someone who to me appears to have not bothered to find out what people on sickness benefits are meant to do.

      Guess what. People on sickness benefits are able to potter around and are usually encouraged to do so. In fact they are usually required to do so by both their doctors and by WINZ – but apparently not by idiot neighbours with a grudge or gormless politicians wanting to make political points. Hey I’m still fucking furious about that speech.

      Think it through. Why just last year I came out of hospital with a stent shoved up an artery. It could have been me up on that bloody roof getting a bit of exercise with a chore. Bloody Shearer could have and evidently would have made me a target for any shithead neighbour with an attitude to take potshots at. Hell you sound like you’d like to encourage them…

      Leaving hospital I got advice about smoking and whacking great pile of substitute gum, patches, etc to make the point I suspect. Advice about diet. And ideas on how to proceed for work and the like.

      I was told to take it easy – but to do something anything every day because I’d had a hell of a shock to the system both physically and mentally. Having a oxygen shutdown to the brain because of a heart failure is generally a problem for the cognitive functions. The efforts of the people to keep me alive were quite rough, very successful, and rather painful after the event. Lyn and the ambulance people didn’t break the ribs but they must have come bloody close. The rest of my body wasn’t exactly in a good condition either for reasons ranging from lack of circulation to having a heart that felt like it wasn’t firing on all cylinders.

      I was also pointed in the direction of the parts of the welfare and health systems if I needed them (including the sickness benefit), and advised that it could be months before I was ready to work again and that I wasn’t to drive for a minimum of three months. I certainly wasn’t up for much sustained physical work for quite a few months because any exertion tired the hell out of me. But I certainly would have been capable of doing a few hours of roof painting long before I was capable of doing any heavy lifting walking more than a few hundred metres without feeling woosey.

      This is what the health system is for. It is what the sickness benefit is for. That is what I have been paying taxes for nearly four decades for (I started paying income taxes at about age 12 or 13 and paid taxes that were similar to my allowance even when I was a university student).

      In practice because of the type of work that I do and that I didn’t have sufficient oxygen deprivation to cause issues with my ability to think meant that I was back at work fast. But that was literally a matter of pure luck. Lyn was at home and was suspicious enough to come upstairs to find out why I was making funny noises as I was trashing myself towards death. There was literally a few minutes window between my being able to continue programming and being highly retarded. There was only a few more minutes between that and death. If the ambulance had been more than 5 minutes away then Lyn’s efforts would have simply caused me to prefer to be dead – I wouldn’t have been able to code.

      After hospital and Lyn was having people continually coming around to pester me while she was at work (she was in the crucial phases of a project) and she was worrying so damn much. So I went back to work a week after I got out of hospital. Keyhole surgery and stents are great. I had to take a taxi each way and was a bit short of concentration for the first couple of weeks and had to recode some stuff a month later. But programming c++ was a hell of a good exercise for my brain and I was probably more efficient than most programmers.

      …you don’t know anybody ripping the system off…

      I don’t currently. I am aware of two or three people in the last 30 years that I’ve known who in my opinion may have been. However my knowledge in each of those sounds like it is way more the David ever had and I couldn’t say for certain that they were ripping off the system or even if it was likely. I’m puzzled that you can from either David Shearers description or in most cases from the outside of any particular case. Quite simply there are way too many variables and you usually have to have the files in front of you to decide what is going on (more on that further down).

      I suspect that like Shearer and his idiot constituent you’re simply plagued with an over-active imagination and a penchant for certainty that are likely to lead you to a supposition based on silly anecdotal evidence. I tend to notice such silliness amongst the idiot commentators I read at Kiwiblog.

      However I have personal experience of helping scores of poor bastards trying to get from the welfare system and ACC what they were entitled to get, what was required for them to become productive taxpayers again, and what I intend my taxes to pay for – especially in the 90’s. The litany of files lost in transit for people trying to move to where the work is, sickness benefits being denied, and threats that the DPB being cut off because the mother was attend appointments (said appointment was to turn up and say that her circumstances hadn’t changed). Lyn has even more tales from either personal experience of that of her friends. She started work in the 90’s and being in your 20’s then in provincial NZ was not a good experience.

      Most of the time the staff try to do a good job. But the rules and procedures made by idiots and often idiot politicians were clearly designed to act as a protracted torture – to the people who needed anything but.

      Somehow I suspect that you have rather missed this whole area of life’s tapestry. Perhaps you should volunteer some time to do something that is socially useful and a bit closer to reality.

      Basically that wee anecdote was a cowardly dog-whistle worthy of a moron in the sewer of kiwiblog and usually is several times per day. However it was uttered by a leader of my damn party who should have damn well known better in a public speech that was carefully transcribed and published. Whatever moron adviser(s) helped him or checked that speech should have been fired for terminal political stupidity.

      For the moment David has been relegated by me to either being a bit of a political fool (kind of easy to predict the reactions) or a possible arsehole. In either case I think that I’ll be looking for another MP to support (I usually expend much of my efforts in Mt Albert).

      I’m seriously considering looking for a new party because of the silence from the caucus at any level. I tend to regard silence about cockups in policy like this as being tacit and implicit support. Besides I regard gross political incompetence as being something that really isn’t something I want to encourage.

      I trust I have made my views on this quite clear…… You can probably infer what my blood pressure level your faux concern and fence straddling posture is

      • “There is absolutely no indication that David Shearer or his staff did any work to find out anything about this person.”

        Shearer said outright that he never bothered to find out if the story was true. And remember, we’re talking about one of his own constituents. In fact, he can’t remember if the guy was supposed to have a back back “or a bad something or other”. He’s been studiously casual about all this, so much so that I still harbour my doubts that the conversation actually happened.

        • Colonial Viper 4.8.1.1

          In fact, he can’t remember if the guy was supposed to have a back back “or a bad something or other”. He’s been studiously casual about all this

          So what was the man doing during the Springboks tour?

          • fnjckg 4.8.1.1.1

            or, maybe u could provide tute on leaving a tidy link for Draco instead of a long url and a wait in moderation, noe what i mean

            • lprent 4.8.1.1.1.1

              Self -inflicted wound? The system is as deeply suspicious about long URL’s as Lyn is about funny noises.

              There is some data in the FAQ.

              • fnjckg

                wounds? many, some self-inflicted, yet much is determined.(all healed now)
                no particular link, just Draco suggesting i tidy up my contributions, which i shall endeavour to do upon understanding how.
                Thanks, great site, i have learnt a lot. “echo chambers”? clearly not
                although, pretty unbelievable what people get up to at times. Good Health and Kind Regards

                -ubi bene, ibi patria

      • QoT 4.8.2

        And lprent lays down a thermonuclear level of smack. Huzzah!

        • lprent 4.8.2.1

          I think you might be able to detect a certain level of ummmm irritation?

          The question of fairness has been misused by Shearer. The whole point of having these services is so that you can stay alive with some degree of dignity despite whatever the fates throw at you. You just have to put up with WINZ and their arcane rules and nitwit systems.

          But having frigging neighbors sticking their idiotic and stupidly unaware noses into the typical pain and despair of most beneficiaries (outside of superannuiants) is blatantly unfair. Having a gormless politician use it for brownie points egging them on is just contemptible.

  5. js 5

    Accusations of beneficiary bashing by Grant Robertson are not only inaccurate but cruel and unfair.

    • Bill 5.1

      No. They’re not. Robertson, as well as deputy, was to be Shearer’s ‘mentor’…to help and advise the ‘newbie’. And so Robertson knows the contents of Shearer’s speeches. End of.

      • Colonial Viper 5.1.1

        Knew and approved them, most likely.

        • Bill 5.1.1.1

          Indeed.

          • Rhinocrates 5.1.1.1.1

            I’ve had a gutsfull of Robertson making sanctimonious speeches about how much he cares, how much he’d “like” an inquiry into this or that, but the fact is, he always has something to say, he always stands up when the issue’s at the forefront… and then he finds a moment to slip out the back door when nobody’s looking because he’s got a “prior engagement” or suchlike. He’s all bluster and no action.

    • the sprout 5.2

      Robertson is very much an active driver of the disasterous labour lurch to the right, he’s just careful to distance himself from it

      • Anne 5.2.1

        I suspect you’re right… the sprout.

        I do know Labour MPs are not allowed to comment on this blog-site. To be fair, it may include all blog-sites apart from their own – Red Alert. That is why there is a ‘Cone of Silence’.

        It would be telling if we knew who came up with that directive.

        [lprent: Not by our policy. We don't allow them to author posts for the site except under their own names and usually for specific purposes - like during the leadership contest earlier this year. ]

        • Te Reo Putake 5.2.1.1

          “I do know Labour MPs are not allowed to comment on this blog-site.”
           
          Big call, Anne. Care to give us the details of when this happened? I wouldn’t want to be rude, but that sounds like bollocks to me, and not just because its completely unenforceable.

          • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.1.1

            Labour MPs are also not permitted to make any comments which appear to give credence to ‘non-orthodox’ economic approaches and theory.

            • Draco T Bastard 5.2.1.1.1.1

              Well, that would explain why I didn’t get any response to my comments on David Parker’s post.

              • fnjckg

                tutorial? i get a long url and a moderation wait otherwise i would. i luv reading up-to-date stuff
                (and, i have lost the smileys page(picture the white rabbit, the doormouse and the hatter, a cup-of-tea, and thats me)
                otherwise, i would :)

          • felix 5.2.1.1.2

            Well I don’t know nothing but it’s been a while since I saw a Labour MP comment here under their own name.

          • Anne 5.2.1.1.3

            That is what I was told Te Reo – and by a caucus member. No need to suggest it’s bollocks. I don’t make things up.

            You are right. It’s unenforceable, but if I was an MP I should consider it wise to abide by it.

            Btw, as I said… I’m sure it applies to all blog sites. Not just The Standard.

            What’s more, I don’t think it applies only to Labour MPs. Do Green MPs comment here? No. Do Nat. MPs comment here? No. It looks like all political parties have issued a similar directive.

            • Te Reo Putake 5.2.1.1.3.1

              I’m pretty sure that MP’s from Labour, the Greens and National do comment here, though anonymously of course. The odious David Garrett has popped up, too, as I recall. Or maybe that was one of his other identities ;) Mallard has commented here on occasion and Darien Fenton fairly regularly, too.
               
              It just doesn’t stack up, particularly in a party like Labour, which, as we know, can’t keep a secret to save itself. Anyhoo, didn’t mean to offend you, Anne, it was the idea of such a weird caucus instruction that I thought was bollocks, not the person reporting it.

              • felix

                “Mallard has commented here on occasion and Darien Fenton fairly regularly, too.”

                Used to. Not lately that I’ve noticed.

              • Anne

                in a party like Labour, which, as we know, can’t keep a secret to save itself.

                Perhaps it was an attempt to see if it’s possible. Whatever, it won’t last. :)

        • Blue 5.2.1.2

          Probably an attempt to stop the MPs embarrassing themselves on social media. It’s not working very well is it?

        • gorj 5.2.1.3

          “I do know Labour MPs are not allowed to comment on this blog-site.”

          What’s the point when they can still make asses of themselves on fbook and twitter? Anyone else remember trevs photo from a couple of weeks ago?

          • Fortran 5.2.1.3.1

            gorj

            Labour MPs’ should be allowed to comment here – let’s face it Red Alert is useless – there is more support and scope here than on the Jerk.

  6. Dr Terry 6

    Could you please tell us specifically what it was that Robertson said concerning beneficiaries?
    Shearer”s silence is deafening!

  7. Ianmac from Vietnam 7

    I think you critics are not seeing the wood for the trees. Two weeks later and you are still interpreting Mr Shearers words in the worst possible light. Get over it. Move on. Much more important issues at hand.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      Two weeks later and you are still interpreting Mr Shearers words in the worst possible light.

      I am open to hearing an interpretation of Shearer’s words in the best possible light, if someone wants to explain it.

      Much more important issues at hand.

      Blame Labour’s speech writers for putting it at the very start of a well publicised and reported speaking engagement, then.

      • weka 7.1.1

        “I am open to hearing an interpretation of Shearer’s words in the best possible light, if someone wants to explain it.”

        Don’t know about his words, but how about the best possible light on his actions?

        He didn’t think anyone important would be paying attention to the Grey Power speech.

        He didn’t realise how badly his anecdote would come across.

        He didn’t understand the power of the blogosphere and social media.

        Or that people on SB or people who have friends and family on SB might be reading what he said and not pleased.

        He was confused about the difference between a politician and medical doctor.

        He thought his advisors knew what they were doing. 

    • weka 7.2

      “Much more important issues at hand.”

      hmm, gay rights* are unimportant, and now disability and beneficiary rights.  

      (*not you ianmac, but the argument that some issues should be sidelined for the more important ones has been made alot recently)
       

    • QoT 7.3

      Get over it. Move on. Much more important issues at hand.

      Yeah, issues like whether the Labour Party is going to remain faithful to its core values of standing up for the little guy. Issues like whether the Labour Party hierarchy are willing to buy into rightwing framing of social welfare. Issues like whether the leader of the Labour Party is either reflecting his party’s values and/or presenting the kind of leadership which can challenge NACT in the next election.

      Oh, wait. That’s exactly what we were talking about. Sorry for not falling for the “pretend it never happened” tactics.

      • Rhinocrates 7.3.1

        Yeah, love that one. “Oh, right, OK… I suppose that I’m meant to support you… but… ah… you know, there are more important issues. MY issues. You see, if they’re your issues, then the plainly can’t be important because they’re not my issues, and politics being a zero-sum game, if you win, the somehow I must be losing, somehow, so you’d really better STFU.”

        No, I don’t care if they’re someone else’s rights, because someone else’s rights are my rights. If rights aren’t universal, then they’re not rights, they’re privileges, and privileges can be withdrawn at any time. If that’s the case, then my “rights” can also be withdrawn at any time. Look at Pastor Niemoller

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

        “I wasn’t X, so I didn’t speak out… and then they came for me.”

        Gay rights are everyone’s rights.

  8. Ianmac from Vietnam 8

    Colonial. Please meet the wood. :)

    • Olwyn 8.1

      Unfortunately, there are too few acceptable trees to speak very promisingly of the wood they constitute. People cannot let go of the anecdote because it offered confirmation for suspicions that were already rife, and which the Labour caucus appears determined not to alleviate.

  9. Uturn 9

    In order for Shearer to have said what he said, he must be of the mindset of those currently in power, within the status quo, who aren’t of the Left. You cannot be a socialist, or have any under standing of the underlying principles of social welfare, and point at beneficiaries as potentially dodgy. You’d have to have forgotten your own past, or be someone that thinks that pop culture defines the history of the world.

    If you’re a socialist, you understand that the definition of “working people” does not exclude the unemployed or otherwise uninvolved. Under capitalist systems, the unemployed are an economic tool for employers to lower the cost of shifting public resources into private hands. Under socialism, people are people, not units of potential productivity. Socialism works for the benefit of people, not private profit, so everyone works, even if while viewing it from a capitalist perspective, that work seems “inefficient”.

    How do you use a corrupted unfair system to measure “fairness”? You cannot refer to our system and use “fairness” in the same sentence. It’s an oxymoron. It is and remains illogical.

    Shearer has in effect said,

    “As leader of the major opposition Left wing party, we cannot tolerate anyone not helping us shift public resources into private hands. Furthermore, I have no intention whatsoever of addressing the injustices and immoral acts of our style of capitalist system. My vision of the future is in maintaining the status quo and has a large helping of poverty. ”

    In their silence and by association, his party condoned it. Do they honestly believe that if we just let them have their way, they’ll come right once in power? Oh that’s right, the justification is that the alternative is worse. Isn’t that… yes I believe it is… it’s extortion, backed up with oppression. The only thing more annoying than having to explain this is that the traitors in Labour will now dress up their idiocy so they sound like the real thing, so people will point and say it quacks like a duck so it must be a duck, but internally nothing will have changed. The duck will still be a goose.

  10. NickS 10

    At the time, I didn’t realise Pagani had been banned from ‘the standard’ for (from memory) being an idiot

    /snicker

    ’tis a rather bad omen when your top spin doctor gets banhammered from a blog with rather straight forward and fairly tolerant comment rules…

    And I don’t think he’ll turn up, PR Hacks like to have the conversation controlled, and here Pagani is open to being nom’ed on from all sides :3

  11. Raymond A Francis 11

    Bill I think you read into comments things the commenters don’t see

    I don’t have “faux concern” about people ripping of the system, as I said there other people paid to worry about that

    I don’t have concerns about my neighbours making a little extra on the side anymore then I worry about fat cats trying to hang onto their money even though that is legal where as the “little” exta on the side is not

    • Bill 11.1

      That’s what I thought you’d think and said as much. No qualitive difference in your world view between an act being undertaken because one is simply in a position to act *so* and one being undertaken from a perception of necessity. Jolly, jolly.

  12. captain hook 12

    anyway it is becoming increasingly clear that policy wonks like pagani and mp’s like robertson begin to believe that they are the party
    they might be right.
    try and find a branch and then try to join it.
    most people give up in disgust at this point.
    we the “constitutional advisory panel” or (———- fill in the blank) are here to tell you what to think.
    and dont you forget it.

  13. captain hook 13

    and js if you think accusations of benny bashing against grant robertson are unfair then why doesn’t he get off his ass and say what he really thinks.
    its that easy.

    • Rhinocrates 13.1

      I disagree with you, profoundly. It’s not spelled “ass”, but “arse”.

      And he won’t.

  14. the sprout 14

    There has been a real response from shearer et al, its been to raise the pitch of the dog whistling and altogether be a lot more sly and less open about the march to the right.

    Not what any of us wanted, but then labour under shearer is turning out to be not what any of us wanted. Unless you count farrar, slater and o’sullivan as ‘us’

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      And no doubt Armstrong, Hooten and Clifton too.

      • the sprout 14.1.1

        True, and probably key, joyce and english too. They all think shearer is marvellous.

        I guess its just labour members and would-be voters that think shearer is poison

  15. just saying 15

    I’ve had a backwards and forwards correspondance with my MP about the matter. It’s up to my move but I feel at a bit of an impasse as to what to say next. We have been so thoroughly invisiblised that any little opening feels important. But I just can’t seem to make a meaningful impression. I’m trying to get across that this isn’t about me and my personal situation (which is fine for the minute actually).

    I don’t think he is comfortable about what was said which means he is not irredeemable as others in the caucus appear to be. Problem is, it seems he’s all too willing to wear the discomfort in the misguided belief in the dreaded “there is no alternative”. I think if he has any say he will urge the leadership to watch their wording in future. He’s not prepared to stand up and say he opposes pandering to bigotry. I think he is part of a very disturbing, and so-far impenetrable, group-think.

    For those who are minimising what Shearer said, I can only paraphrase Bomber (probably quoting someone else): If you are not outraged and alarmed, you weren’t paying attention.

    • lprent 15.1

      Point him to my comment above and tell him that there is one bit of goo falling out of a artery wall between him and being a victim of severe neurological damage and on a sickness benefit. Then ask him what he eats at Bellamys and if he thinks his exercise regime is sufficient and if he thinks his neighbors would dob him in for gardening for a few hours.. See he can work…..

  16. Hilary 16

    I think what Grant Robertson is saying in this recent Red Alert blog is about those traditional Labour values. I see no evidence of any lurch to the right.
    http://blog.labour.org.nz/2012/09/02/on-fairness-and-courage/

    • Carol 16.1

      Good to support a fair wage for the low paid employed. But the topic here is about not employing the mythical separation of the deserving and undeserving poor to distract from bigger issues of income/wealth inequalities.

    • just saying 16.2

      I see no evidence of any lurch to the right.

      None?
      What about Shearer’s anecdote – the subject of this post.
      This isn’t the only evidence by any means.
      Do you think $15 per hour aligns with traditional Labour values (fair pay for work)? Would you find $15 per hour a fair return for your labour?

      • Te Reo Putake 16.2.1

        So, js, would you vote for a Labour leader who didn’t think $15 ph was enough? If so, here’s yer man.

        • Carol 16.2.1.1

          But Shearer and Robertson on a “fair go” and living wage does not show any evidence of moving away from the bennie bashing in Shearer’s grey power speech. They are both talking about living wages for the employed. In the grey power speech, Shearer equated fairness by people on totally different positions in the economic structure: a beneficiary earning a bit extra on the side, with a wealthy person avoiding/rorting their taxes.

          They are talking about a fair go on a playing field that is tilted in favour of the wealthy and powerful. They are not talking about a major change to the playing field, just a bit of tinkering around the edges.

          At this time in our history, after Labour has already shifted too far to the right, the left needs s total change of direction.

        • Draco T Bastard 16.2.1.2

          While it was a voluntary scheme, it had cross-party support in Britain and thousands of employees were covered.

          I think you’ll find that is the main reason why he supports the “living wage”.

      • Hilary 16.2.2

        It’s a start and will make a difference for many people. He’s not saying that is the end point, for goodness sake..

        $15 a hour or less is standard for many important jobs such as teacher aiding, carer support work and cleaning, as well as many front line NGO staff. More of course would be better.

        By the way, instead of constant criticism I think The Standard collective should start a competition whereby regular posters write their ideal Labour politician speech. The winning ones could be sent to the Party leadership.

        • Carol 16.2.2.1

          He’s not saying that is the end point, for goodness sake..

          But by not renouncing his grey power beneficiary dog whistle, he’s giving no indication that he wants to go much further. (and that is what this discussion thread is about.

          Yes a rise in minimum wage is good. But Labour needs to be working towards so much more – otherwise, next time National get in power, they will continue to drag the country further and further to the right.

        • Rhinocrates 16.2.2.2

          is standard for

          Ah, they should be grateful for what they get, the poor plebs. How dare they, like Oliver Twist, ask for more!

          More of course would be better.

          Oh yes, more of that “we are committed to…” “I would like…” bullshit. Dear me, are you going to pat me on the head as well?

          I think The Standard collective should start a competition whereby regular posters write their ideal Labour politician speech. The winning ones could be sent to the Party leadership.

          Ha ha!

          Yes, I think that that would be a good idea, just to make totally obvious what they would ignore in order to pander to the mythical Waitakere men.

          instead of constant criticism

          How about “instead of constant stabs in the back from the supposed ‘Labour’ party”?

        • gobsmacked 16.2.2.3

          I think The Standard collective should start a competition whereby regular posters write their ideal Labour politician speech. The winning ones could be sent to the Party leadership.

          The first sentence: already done. I’ve typed out the words to put in Goff/Shearer’s mouth, posted them on here several times, and then waited for them to say something – anything (I’m not suggesting my ideas are perfect, or that others couldn’t do better, far from it. But those “others” clearly don’t include the current writers of speeches or media releases).

          The second sentence: sorry, but that’s the whole problem. If the Party leadership think – and this so beggars belief – that Trevor Mallard and John Pagani etc are sources of good advice, then how can I – or the rest of us – ever get through to them? How do we make them understand the most BASIC concept … repeated failure probably shouldn’t be repeated yet again, and again?

          This didn’t all start with Shearer’s speech. Goff made a speech to Grey Power (same audience) written by same people (Pagani) with the same idea (dog-whistle) about 3 years ago and guess what? Predictably, it flopped. And was dropped – because it flopped.

          Acknowledging that they aren’t doing a good job is simply not in their DNA. They don’t want good ideas, they want control. And as long as they control the party list, they can’t possibly lose. Only the rest of us do.

        • Rhinocrates 16.2.2.4

          It’s a start and will make a difference for many people. He’s not saying that is the end point, for goodness sake..

          Lovely!

          What’s his end point then, pray tell? Do you have some insight into his master plan? I’d really like to know! What is the minimum wage he is so committed to, what standard of decent living should be available to all, except those dirty, filthy parasites who paint their roofs when the could be doing jobs that don’t exist despite their disabilities that Shearer can diagnose as false by hearsay?

          What is the end point? Tell us! You see, by telling us what the end point is, we will see that he has absolute principles, principles that will not be compromised. If we know what they are, we can decide whether he is worthy of our confidence. So then, what are they? Do you know what they are? I don’t because he hasn’t said so.

    • Rhinocrates 16.3

      I am proud that Labour had two Bills in a row

      Bullshit! It was a private member’s bill. Don’t lie and say that it was a Labour bill. Louisa Wall had the courage to put it forward, but to try to appropriate it as a “Labour” bill is an outright lie. All credit to her, none at all to the party for not making it policy indeed, quite the opposite for them deciding not to make it policy.

      • QoT 16.3.1

        And she got horribly slammed by Labour MP Su’a William Sio for advocating party policy in her Private Member’s Bill, too. Another topic on which Shearer had sweet fuckall to say.

        • Rhinocrates 16.3.1.1

          Well I’m glad that you know what “party policy” is, because I sure as fuck don’t. I think we might agree on what party policy was and what it should be, but do either of us have any idea on what it thinks the Paganis and its focus groups are telling Shearer what it should be?

          • QoT 16.3.1.1.1

            It’s on page 374 of the 2011 election manifesto, helpfully available only in PDF on the Labour website because they still have no fucking idea how the internet works:
            http://www.labour.org.nz/content/downloads

            If there’s been a reversal on that, someone should tell Grant Robertson.

            • Bored 16.3.1.1.1.1

              Page 374…..wonder how much was paid to Pagani types for each page of something that came to nothing (they lost)?

              So much policy detail, might be interesting to cross reference it with the guiding principles of the Labour Party for adherence. Seems to me the principles are all the policy they need.

  17. fnjckg 17

    in 1997, maintaining, repairing and rebuilding heavy mining machinery, i worked all the hours i chose to in AK and was earning more than police (unless sgt or above) and more than charge nurses.
    i felt at the time, that this state of affairs was rather unusual (hard work, but not many people)
    anyway, a lot of money ‘back in the day

    for seven years now, i have maintained myself on less than $9.00/hour pro rata, and i am very comfortable,
    however, it is the incomes of families that concern me most, with huge sections of the population moving into, out of, or remaining in relative, and or, absolute poverty.

    just watched History channel on medieval english class structure; well…other than the life-style trappings, it seems like 700 years just melted away

    if not comfortable with the SLAVE meme, how about PEASANTS

    • Bored 17.1

      The world is now all shrinkage. How will we share the shrinkage? Will you await the shrinkage meet your $9 before joining the shrinkage?

  18. captain hook 18

    rhino 2 lies in two sentences.
    indicates potential sociopathic tendency.

    • Rhinocrates 18.1

      Elaborate please. Oh for God’s sake, is that the standard (no pun intended) response? “sociopathic/psychopathic” as a closer? Why not just say “Jewish”? That’s just as deep and reasoned as “you’re a Nazi” because it’s meant to shut down discussion by denegrating the proposer. Yes, that is a Godwin, and if Godwin is offended, let him start his own blog.

      BTW, in my case, it’s Asperger’s. That’s supposed to be “nice”, I’m told.

      Now, care to discuss the issues or is it name-calling from now on?

  19. captain hook 19

    no I really mean it.
    you are exhibiting all the clinical indications for sociopathy.
    that doesn’t mean to say you are but if you carry on like this then you definitely are.
    and hey being a jew got nuthin to do wif it.

  20. Rhinocrates 20

    clinical indications for sociopathy

    Then you show the diagnostic skill of David Shearer. I don’t care if you “mean it”, nor should anyone. What do you mean by “clinical”? Really? Are you a clinical psychologist? What are your qualifications? Looking at a couple of wikipedia articles doesn’t qualify you, why do you think that doing so does? Why are you trying to derail this thread?

    I’m sorry that I have to spell this out, but I’m not Jewish (though my stepfather was), my point was that crude denigration based on stereotypical definitions of identity were assumed by you to be sufficient to refute a point. That, alas, is a perennial problem with The Standard – someone says something someone disagrees with and the automatic response by some individuals is to declare them a psychopath, based on absolutely no evidence or expertise whatsoever.

    Now, again, what are my supposed lies that allow you to make a “clinical” diagnosis?

  21. Rhinocrates 21

    Come on Hook, I’m waiting. What are your qualifications as a psychologist that allow you to make a diagnosis of psychopathy (sociopathy is an outdated term, by the way)?

    What is your expertise?

    … and still waiting. Are you a psychologist? Are you David Shearer?

    What were my “lies”?

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Saturday playlist: songs about work
    Every Saturday we’re going to post a couple of music videos, probably on a particular theme, unless we run out of ideas and it just turns into Stephanie spamming us with professional wrestling soundtracks and Nicki Minaj. So, in that...
    On the Left | 31-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    Frankly Speaking | 31-10
  • The Greens are wacky?
    It is a bit like a game of pin the tail on the donkey, the National Government and their supporters are desperately attempting to stick the wacky label on the Greens again, but it is becoming harder to make it...
    Local Bodies | 31-10
  • Novopay Exemplifies National’s Governance
    This National led Government is strong on ideology, weak on process and reluctant to accept responsibility. The Novapay debacle exemplifies all of these well.When questioned about Novopay, National Ministers will never accept full responsibility. Initially the Government blamed Labour because they...
    Local Bodies | 31-10
  • Stuart’s 100 #47: The Forgotten Triangle
    48: The Forgotten Triangle What if the forgotten triangle behind Shortland Street was more than a parking lot? Continuing the series on forgotten or underutilised spaces within the city, the steeply rising wedge of land between Shortland Street, Albert Park...
    Transport Blog | 31-10
  • World News Brief, Friday October 31
    Top of the AgendaTensions Flare in Jerusalem...
    Pundit | 31-10
  • Guest post: Plain English is radical
    @aaronincognito is an anonymous soulless bureaucrat who blogs at fundamentallyuseless.wordpress.com. Despite all the ups and downs of the past few months, there has been one constant in left wing politics: jargon. Regardless of whether Nicky Hager, Judith Collins, or Eminem...
    On the Left | 31-10
  • Long past time
    The Dominion-Post reports that the government is considering wiping past convictions for homosexuality. Good. As a guest-poster to On The Left has recently explained, living with a criminal conviction isn't easy; employers and agencies will simply dump applications from people...
    No Right Turn | 31-10
  • Define Instruments Expands into South Africa
    It’s always great to see companies grow – and Define Instruments recently took their first big leap. The team has followed existing international sales by setting up a South African office. It’s the first of many new overseas offices we hope to...
    Lance Wiggs | 31-10
  • MacLennan on fixing the OIA
    Journalist and lawyer Catriona MacLennan has some suggestions on Fixing Official Information Act Abuses . She identifies three problems with the law: lack of resources to enforce the law; deliberate flouting of the act; and inadequate understanding of the legislation...
    No Right Turn | 31-10
  • All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy
    It's Halloween! Time for a jolly pumpkin to remind everyone that there is chocolate nearby The weather is terrible, and while it can't rain all the time, I suspect there may be an absence of ghosts and ghouls. Whatever shall...
    No Right Turn | 31-10
  • Indistinguishable from totalitarianism
    SF author Charles Stross has a lovely alternate-history thought experiment which demonstrates quite neatly how British surveillance is indistinguishable in practice from totalitarianism. And if you're in any doubt, you've only got to read today's news:The Government is facing calls...
    No Right Turn | 31-10
  • Rate my minister
    Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce wants to introduce a new ranking system, Rate My Qualification, where employers rate tertiary education courses and then students can look up the results. Well perhaps employers should be able rate other things too, such as their ministers....
    Tertiary Education Union | 31-10
  • To the field experiments!
    In the wake of the Stanford / Dartmouth schnozzle this week, this political science article caught my eye: The way your brain reacts to a single disgusting image can be used to predict whether you lean to the left or...
    Polity | 30-10
  • NZ cranks finally publish an NZ temperature series – but their paper’s ...
    You can’t teach old dogs new tricks, it seems — certainly not if they’re gnawing a much loved old bone at the time. The lads from the NZ Climate Science Coalition — yes, the same boys who tried to sue...
    Hot Topic | 30-10
  • West Auckland Network with new interchanges
    Last week Auckland Transport began consultation on the new network for West Auckland. I and many readers were highly critical of it as it seemed to ignore much of the network design philosophy and elements AT are implementing elsewhere and...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • This ‘boom’ might save the world – 10 quick facts about r...
    As the world's leading climate scientists finalise the latest and most comprehensive report on climate change and ways to tackle it, a key question is: What is new? What has changed since the release of the UN climate panel's last Assessment Report (AR4) in...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 30-10
  • A lack of commitment
    New Zealand has finally joined the Open Government Partnership. A requirement of membership is to submit an action plan about how you will improve open government over the next two years. So what's in ours? Sweet fuck-all:Our Action Plan will...
    No Right Turn | 30-10
  • Smartphones are meant to bend
    You’ve no doubt heard of the issues surrounding the newly released iPhone 6, but do […] The post Smartphones are meant to bend appeared first on Connected....
    Potentia | 30-10
  • Tea Party takes on “President Obola”
    OK, so this happened: Theatricality is one of the best ways to shake the sleepwalking public awake. One brave liberty advocate made a bold statement when he donned a Hazmat suit and an Obama mask, and took to the president’s...
    Polity | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said.  Photo:  ...
    CTU | 30-10
  • Herald vs Hosking-in-Herald on teabreaks
    The New Zealand Herald editorial today is distinctly unimpressed with the government’s decision to remove mandated tea breaks for workers: It is a pity that almost the first legislative act of the Government's new term is an act abolishing mandatory...
    Polity | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • Ghost Dancing?
    Ghost Dancing circa 1890: With the buffalo effectively exterminated, the material basis for the Native American cultures of the Great Plains was destroyed. The Ghost Dance, it was believed, would reconstitute the basis for an independent indigenous existence. Has the...
    Bowalley Road | 30-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Way back in March, 2012,  I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18...
    Frankly Speaking | 30-10
  • WINZ: Bureaucratic Befuddlement and Confustication
    Yeah, I know. Confusticate isn’t a word, unless you’re quoting Urban Dictionary. Definition: This word is the coalescing of the English words “confuse” and “complicate”. It refers to anything of, or relating to the process of being both confused and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • Climate change and New Zealand cities
    Environmentalists sometimes have an uneasy relationship with cities. Because they concentrate a lot of people and economic activity in relatively small places, they also concentrate a lot of negative environmental effects. All that concrete, all that energy being consumed, the...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • Got a mystery? Just ask John!
    Tuesday, November 24, 2009John Key has learned the identity of the entertainer guilty of an indecency charge through the grapevine of people circumventing the suppression order....
    Pundit | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD....
    CTU | 30-10
  • Blocked
    It is safe to say before the election last month I was fairly prolific in the blogosphere as we headed to an election. Was it because there was a glimmer of hope for we on this side of the coin?...
    My Thinks | 30-10
  • Blend with the Bruntletts Group Ride
    While Vancourerites Chris and Melissa Bruntlett are here for their Auckland Conversation talk, Generation Zero, Frocks on Bikes and TransportBlog have organised a slow, family friendly ride around the city centre. The map is below. The ride is designed to be self-directed so...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • Rawshark – Is she Maori or Pakeha?
    Cameron Slater blamed someone for being behind the hacking of his emails and passing them on to Nicky Hager. And then he named someone he thought was Rawshark. John Key says someone told him who Rawshark is but he ain’t telling. @B3nRaching3r is...
    Te Putatara | 30-10
  • Employment law: it’s toasted
    In an early episode of Mad Men, when the company’s going for the Lucky Strike account, sleazebag antihero Don Draper asks the client exactly how cigarettes are made. They talk through the process, mentioning the tobacco is toasted – and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • Owners of the wind
    Thirty-odd years ago in the Kingdom of Denmark lived some brave people who disliked nuclear power and loved renewable energy. Determined to keep their country clean and safe, they began building their own wind turbines. Today, thanks to these passionate...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • TPPA Bulletin #58
    NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION 8 NOVEMBER 2014 Auckland, Hamilton, Raglan, Tauranga, Rotorua, Gisborne, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Levin,Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin,Invercargill. REGIONAL UPDATES Auckland (1:00 pm at Aotea Square): speakers include Robyn Malcolm (Actors Equity), Bunny McDiarmid (Greenpeace), Dayle Takitimu...
    NZ – Not for sale | 30-10
  • Seabed mining: drums in the deep
    Out on the Chatham Rise, the ridge jutting into the waters off Christchurch and extending out beyond the Chathams, Chatham Rock Phosphate has a mining permit and is now seeking EPA approval for its project to mine phosphate for fertiliser,...
    Pundit | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today.“Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so again...
    CTU | 30-10
  • An unmanaged conflict
    Katherine Rich is a member of the government-appointed Health Promotion Agency, responsible for (as it says on its website) "inspiring all New Zealanders to lead healthier lives". Katherine Rich is also Chief Executive of the New Zealand Food and Grocery...
    No Right Turn | 30-10
  • Robert Fisk
    Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default...
    No Right Turn | 30-10
  • A stretch
    This morning the Herald revealed that Kim Dotcom had been convicted and fined for dangerous driving in 2009, but had not declared it on his application for residency. Immigration is now talking about deporting him. So, this is what we...
    No Right Turn | 30-10
  • Tauranga port happy to take the money – but not happy to accept responsib...
    Comments from a Port of Tauranga manager about deaths and injuries in their port during a Radio New Zealand interview are unacceptable....
    MUNZ | 30-10
  • New Ebola Toys for Xmas. Yay?
    From the "too soon?" file, here are two oddly successful exercises in niche marketing. First, the molecularly-sort-of-correct ebola plush toy. Apparently it has sold out: And, of course, the sexy ebola nurse outfit: Ebola, as everyone knows, ignores cleavage. And...
    Polity | 30-10
  • Temporary, discriminatory and an admission of Faliure
    The PM says that the legislation his government proposes to pass under urgency allowing for the confiscation of passports of NZ citizens in order to combat the threat of returning foreign fighters will be “tightly focused” on those traveling to...
    Kiwipolitico | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • Experiment-gate update
    Readers may recall the saga around an experimental mailer some Stanford / Dartmouth researchers sent into the state of Montana. In a randomised trial, it provided voters with some added information about two candidates running for a judicial election, and...
    Polity | 30-10
  • Why are our Politicians Auckland Toll Chickens?
    Yesterday both the National Government and Green Party opposed the suggestion to place a toll on Auckland’s roads, but for completely different reasons. The Government opposes it because they see it as a new tax. The Greens because they would...
    Gareth’s World | 29-10
  • James Shaw speaks on the four Bills formerly known as the Accounting Infras...
    The assurance industry is a critical component of our economic framework. The idea that there is a trusted independent watchdog of the public interest underpins investor confidence and ensures financial probity on behalf of our country's leading institutions. New Zealand...
    Greens | 31-10
  • ANZ needs to look after its workers after another super profit
    The ANZ bank needs to acknowledge the super profits it makes are coming at the expense of its workers, the Green Party said today.Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) 2014 full year results show a lift in performance...
    Greens | 31-10
  • James Shaw’s maiden speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • National’s “Auckland housing boom” a fizzer
    Falling Auckland consent numbers show the Government’s housing policy is going backwards contrary to wild claims by Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith that we are on the cusp of a massive construction boom, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Local job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Zero tolerance for forestry accidents a must
    The Government must adopt a zero tolerance approach to workplace accidents in the forestry sector to stop people being killed, Labour’s Forestry spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “It is time for the Government and the forestry sector to put an end...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Return to less holidays on the cards?
    John Key needs to lay his cards on the table regarding the Government’s intentions around holiday pay and annual leave entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “A day after National pushed through laws that take away the legal...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Catherine Delahunty Speaks on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill
    Kia ora, Mr Assistant Speaker. He mihi nui ki te Whare Paremata. Welcome to the glorious 19th century, dressed up in the not-so-new flexibility-speak. At the final moment of this bill, let us drop the charade. The Government has a...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Ruataniwha Feds refuse to present a balanced view
    A bid to sell the Ruataniwha water project to Hawkes Bay farmers has turned in to an incredibly one sided affair, says Labours spokesperson on Water Meka Whaitiri.  “It’s being promoted as ‘Ruataniwha it’s now or never’ and it promises...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Worker’s rights dealt severe blow with Bill’s passing
    The passing of the Employment Relations Amendment Bill is another blow to workers' rights in New Zealand, the Green Party said today.This afternoon, National's Employment Relations Amendment Bill passed with the support of Act and United Future."This bill will force...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Barriers to reporting sex crimes must go
    Both the Government and police need to take action to ensure that, in future, sexual abuse victims know they will be taken seriously, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “The young women involved in the Roast Busters case, and...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    Greens | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Kevin Hague questions the Minister of Health on management of Katherine Ric...
    Is he satisfied that all conflicts of interest that arose by the head of Food and Grocery Council Katherine Rich being a member of the Health Promotion Agency were managed in accordance with the provisions of the Crown Entities Act...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Bennett parks numbers on social housing
    Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett admitted today that well over 1000 families have been subsidised through the accommodation supplement to stay in the Ranui campground, somewhere she has previously described as not the right place for children to be growing...
    Labour | 30-10
  • 50,000 sign petition against anti-worker law
    More than 50,000 Kiwis have signed Labour’s petition against the Government’s scrapping of tea break entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “That’s the equivalent of five people signing our petition every minute for a week. It shows the...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Address in Reply Debate – Dr Kennedy Graham on UN Security Council- 2...
    In the Speech from the Throne last week the Prime Minister identified the usual domestic goals for his Government. I counted 17. They are not my subject today. I wish instead to focus on matters beyond our shores. In the...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Key misled public over Jason Ede
    Information contained in a new chapter of the book Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister, that Jason Ede stopped working for the National Party on the night the book Dirty Politics was released, shows Mr Key and senior ministers hid...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Greenpeace report highlights better path for NZ agriculture
    A Greenpeace International report highlights a better way forward for New Zealand agriculture than the GE and chemical mutation technologies supported by Federated Farmers, and the National Government through its research funding packages, the Green Party said today. "This report...
    Greens | 29-10
  • BNZ post record profits while leaving savers vulnerable
    A small part of the $850 million record profit posted by the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today needs to be set aside to protect savers' deposits in the future, said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.Dr Norman was...
    Greens | 29-10
  • RBNZ U-turn shows monetary settings were wrong
    The Reserve Bank's U-turn on interest rates today shows monetary policy settings were wrong and New Zealanders have suffered unnecessarily through the loss of jobs and having to pay higher interest rates, the Green Party said today.Reserve Bank Governor Graeme...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Solid Energy decision delay sensible
    Today’s announcement by the Board of Solid Energy that it will delay making a final decision on re-entering the Pike River mine is a sensible move, Labour’s MP for  West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “It has been clear for some...
    Labour | 28-10
  • New York Green Bank off to a $1B start
    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced late last week the New York Green Bank’s first NZD$1 billion tranche of green energy investments. The projects, which are difficult for the private sector to finance, are now possible by New York Green...
    Greens | 28-10
  • The Final Fifth: The Last Great Task for Progressive New Zealand.
    MOST OF NEW ZEALAND’S social problems are concentrated among those living at the margins of what is otherwise a relatively wealthy society. Recently released international data on child poverty has exposed an acutely stressed social strata encompassing roughly 20 percent...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Myth Busting Rape Boasters
    In just one week a case that galvanised a nation into discussing rape culture is now being reframed as mischievous teen hi-jinx. One year ago the Roast Busters case came to the attention of the media and the public. This...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Workers rights weakened by new laws – fightback needed
    The government’s changes to the employment laws are designed to weaken workers bargaining power – at both the individual and collective level.   30-day rule The old law required an employer with a collective agreement in place to employ new...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – Where are Labour Candidates on disability?
    For the few people who know me (hello Mum), I am proudly New Zealand’s first Autistic Spectrum Lawyer, as well as being the very bottom Candidate on the Labour Party List. (64 out of 64). Being honoured like this is...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • False birth registration brings home detention
    A Whangarei woman who attempted to register the birth of a fictitious child to claim a sole parent benefit was sentenced to six months home detention in the Whangarei District Court today....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Family of Robert Ellis demand a proper investigation
    The family of a New Zealander killed in Indonesia are growing increasingly concerned at the lack of information they’ve received, and the handling of the investigation into his murder....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Minister of Health must account for aged care workers’ pay
    The New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW NZ) congratulates rest-home worker Kristine Bartlett on her landmark claim for equal pay from her employer and successfully pursuing this to the Court of Appeal....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere