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Conference 2012 – Labour

Written By: - Date published: 1:54 pm, November 16th, 2012 - 148 comments
Categories: labour - Tags:

Well, I’m at the Labour conference – as media.

Feels somewhat weird after many delegate years. I figure that The Standard needs to start sending someone along to the conferences. So I will ground-break at each of the major ones over the next year.

The remit book looks like the main focus for this year. I haven’t been to many conferences over the last few years.  But there is a noticeably larger group in the crucial age groups that have been lacking – the 30′s. A lot less of the grey heads like myself who have increasingly dominated the heads.

 

148 comments on “Conference 2012 – Labour”

  1. Huginn 1

    Thanks for this, Lynn. I’m looking forward to reading your posts.

    • lprent 1.1

      They will take a while to come out. I am writing notes, but as people are probably aware, I am not a disciplined writer of text (code is a completely different story).

  2. Pete 2

    Are you tweeting the conference? Is there a feed I can follow?

    • lprent 2.1

      Afraid not. I was thinking about it, but work and house hunting ran me out of time to think and practice.

    • Trevor Mallard 2.2

      #Labour2012

      • QoT 2.2.1

        But don’t use any naughty words!

      • xtasy 2.2.2

        Je suis “malade”, I’d say.

        Trevor, what do you want here? Have you any cheap, scarce tickets for sale, or what? I thought you used to be a bit witty and smart, but like many others I am totally turned off your style and personality. Make room for fresh blood, please, Labour needs it, more than you!!!

  3. lprent 4

    In the working group on economic.

    Interesting seeing how well the economic MP’s are working with each other. 3 David’s in particular. Clark, Parker, and Cunliffe – Cunliffe speaking on behalf of Parker. Practicality rather than ideological, but for me – untainted by the TINA of the first conferences I attended.

    Buying back assets, and IFFT IFTT. Interesting that at least one speaker confused a IFFT IFTT with a foreign exchange tax. I think we need to start a education rogramme here.

    • One Tāne Huna 4.1

      Should that be IFTT? If not please explain IFFT – google returns nothing relevant :)

      • lprent 4.1.1

        Yes. Typo on a iPad.

        • geoff 4.1.1.1

          And IFTT stands for?…

          • WhereAboutsUnknown 4.1.1.1.1

            Isolated Fallopian Tube Torsion

          • Lanthanide 4.1.1.1.2

            Yeah, tell me about it.

            IFTT doesn’t even come up on google either. My guess is International Financial Transaction Tax.

            • lprent 4.1.1.1.2.1

              Yes. I am afraid I had never heard of it either.

              http://www.labour.org.nz/sites/labour.org.nz/files/2012-Policy-Remits-Final.pdf

              Remit 3. I suspect it is to prevent a FTT locally. I can think of many objections. First is that it is unenforceable.

              • AmaKiwi

                It can be enforced. Any money going through a NZ bank pays a small tax, the same way GST is automatically added.

                It is primarily an isolationist strategy. It makes it more expensive for foreigners to buy NZ assets and for locals to buy or invest overseas.

                It will mostly net the small fries. You and I will pay a little more when we buy on-line from overseas, send money to relations, buy and sell Australian shares, etc.

                One problem the Labour leaders are trying to tackle is the huge trade in our currency. The NZ dollar is the tenth most heavily traded currency in the world. They think if they can slow down the trade the currency will come down in price. John Key would reply that you can’t successfully alter currency prices in global markets where trillions of dollars change hands every DAY in markets all over the world.

                I am loathe to agree with John Key about anything, but on this he is right.

                • McFlock

                  Depends on the level.
                  If it’s 30%, then yeah it’d hit personal transactions. Not so sure about isolationist – nothing’s stopping an international from making a local holding company so it’s an IFTT-free asset on their international books. They pay IFTT on reconciling with the overseas suppliers, but not too bad.

                  If it’s 0.05%, then it wouldn’t be noticed for personal transactions, but it would still be a filter on speculative cashflows.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  John Key would reply that you can’t successfully alter currency prices in global markets where trillions of dollars change hands every DAY in markets all over the world.

                  I’m pretty sure he would say something like that despite the fact that he’s worked to influence the exchange rate of currencies.

  4. Freedom 5

    Would it not be worth starting a tag to confirm the independance of The Standard?

  5. quartz 6

    Great to see you reporting the conference Lynn. You should put “#Labour2012″ in the title of each post so they get picked up when they’re tweeted.

  6. lprent 7

    The TPPA is interestingly contentious. Phil Goff speaking against the remit. Not in detail. But that the making the bottom line mandatory. I will blog on this later.

    Interesting, the mandatory part of the remit was voted out. Be interesting what happens on the foor.

  7. lprent 8

    At the justice workshop.

    Who really cares about a republic? Or not?

    • Never turn your back on good civilised thinking ….

    • lprent 8.2

      A distinct age division. Grey against putting a move towards a republic forward.

    • xtasy 8.3

      I care a bloody great deal about a REPUBLIC Lynn!

      A republic is just the “people’s system and state”, not some aged, pre senile royals, travelling on tax payers’ expense and deliver bloody nothing of substance at all, neither to where he comes from, nor to the ones he visits.

      I HATE BLUDGERS, especially the ones at the top!

      • lprent 8.3.1

        Apparently the room I was in agreed with you. They voted for it. And it was pretty much a younger vs older split (and I would have been on the older side).

        • karol 8.3.1.1

          Glad to hear there’s a lot of young/new blood making their voices heard.  I  am an older person for a Republic & anti-royal bludgers.

  8. pete 9

    Labour proposing yet more taxes.

    There’s a surprise…..

  9. just saying 10

    Good on you LPrent.
    I hope you are in full ceremonial costume : a blackened curtain with an unreadable name tag :-D

    • lprent 10.2

      No problems. I may have mentioned before that I am quite antisocial under the best of circumstances. What I am interested in is the mood of the conference and some information on a few topics. So far when I have asked I have gotten access. Was asking Phil Goff about his view on the TPPA

      Looks like Gower is discussing Cameron Slater and Tamihere not being allowed to attend as media.. That could be worth a post. Sounds like a dumbarse beat up.

      • gobsmacked 10.2.1

        It was a beat-up, but Tamihere certainly demonstrated why he’d be a walking time-bomb if he was a Labour candidate/MP.

        He wouldn’t last five minutes.

        • Jim Nald 10.2.1.1

          Tami who? You mean the one who was yesterday’s old story?

          • prism 10.2.1.1.1

            I guess he’s Tamiwhere.

            • Jim Nald 10.2.1.1.1.1

              Very good. I could not have bettered that. Maybe because I could only think about the stockpile of Tamiflu that the Ministry of Health accumulated in anticipation of swine flu. Roche made a tidy sum out of that?

              • prism

                The intention was good. Inaction could have had disastrous consequences. Whether John T can be compared? His medicine would be of variable quality.
                There’s a word I’ll check on google.- picaresque. It’s a bit strong but I think can be applied now to a number of people, perhaps JT.

                Of or relating to a genre of usually satiric prose fiction originating in Spain and depicting in realistic, often humorous detail the adventures of a roguish hero of low social degree living by his or her wits in a corrupt society.

      • karol 10.2.2

        News was promising something on Tamihere wanting back into Labour, on tonights 6pm news.  I just had a shower, so I don’t know if I missed it.

        So they want to stir things up over Tamihere? 

        • karol 10.2.2.1

          It’s here

          Tamihere is complaining about being excluded from the Labour Party – not just the conference. Ar least, his membership still hasn’t been approved.

          I’m pleased to see that Shearer failed to support him today when asked.  Tamihere didn’t do himself any favours by saying the Labour Party is a close knit gang like the Headhunters.

          The report did include something about Shearer – but, really, there are far more significant things going on at the Conference than Tamihere issues.

          • lprent 10.2.2.1.1

            Yes.

            Looks like the 40-40-20 is the only thing left on the table for leadership from what I hear despite some ardent opposition. The result of the 1980′s TINA. Has to go past the floor, but I gather that it is now either go for that or nothing.

            Somehow I think that the affiliates and members will go for it.

            • karol 10.2.2.1.1.1

              Does that men a challenge to a current leader won’t require – what was it? 65% of caucus?

              • karol

                mean – not men (no edit button).

              • Separate issue Karol.  

                The 40:40:20 is the proportion of votes for MPs:members:affiliates during a leadership contest.

                The trigger for a contest will require either the leader stepping down or a petition by caucus.  The original proposal of 2/3 was too high.  A significant majority of Caucus could have no faith in the leader and it would not happen.

                NZ Council is suggesting that it be 55% of caucus but I am sure it will be no more than 50%.  It may go as low as 40% of caucus having the power to start a leadership contest. 

                • AmaKiwi

                  UK Labour requires 20%. That’s ample.

                  The 20% of caucus who sign the petition know if the leader is not ousted they are dead meat. The leader will relegate them to Siberia.

                  If you can get 20% to sign a challenge, the leader is probably finished. You will NEVER get 40% to sign.

                  Tokenism. It preserves those in power and blunts future attempts at meaningful change.

                  The supposed change to 40:40:20 is also tokenism. The caucus and unions together will have 60%.

                • xtasy

                  Well, then, Shearer do the dirty deed now, thanks! That is if he has the dignity, sincerity and guts to admit defeat. Or rather live in lala land, pretending all is “sweet”, which is a bit like the ruler that lost touch with his people. I am waiting!!!!!!!!!

                  This conference will just be another big disappointment, I fear.

  10. lprent 11

    Sitting watching Patrick Gower do a remote Q&A. Might have to do an ondemand to see what he is saying.

  11. fisiani 12

    The word on the street is that John Tamihere has been banned from attending the Labour party conference.
    Please let it be true.

    • gobsmacked 12.1

      I love how Fis says “street” instead of the actual source, which is in fact his favourite blog.

      Like, only Fisiani has the internets.

    • lprent 12.2

      Looks like there was a good reason. Seems like Tamihere was more interested in raising his ratings than he was in the party. But that is no more than I suspected.

      He was neither a delegate nor was he accepted as media. He was merely a useless gatecrasher.

      • karol 12.2.1

        That sounds about right – he was stirring up the gay issue.  And the problem with our news media is they tend to go for drama and sensationalism over substance.

      • Mickysavage 12.2.2

        Tamihere is not a member or a delegate so has no right to be here. Strange he thinks he does…

        • karol 12.2.2.1

          Sounds like he was just out to sabotage, and get attention – that Headhunters comment: he surely wouldn’t have said that if he really wanted to be a candidate again?

      • xtasy 12.2.3

        “Corporate Maori” or what? Waipareira Trust or what? Self promotion or what? I am seeking answers, if there are any.

  12. geoff 13

    The comments on National Radio from caucus members, like Phil Goff and Andrew Little, about the questioning of Shearer leadership, were kinda surreal. They effectively said the whole thing was probably coming from anonymous right wing bloggers!

    • karol 13.1

      *sigh*  I guess it’s the convenient thing to say when they don’t want to talk about it.

      But this “anonymous” meme makes them look so out of touch with the internet – speaking as someone who has been around Internet forums since about 95/6.

      They don’t seem to realise how attached we can become to our online handles – it’s part of our identity.  So dismissing that without responding to the criticisms, seems to me a bit like an ad hominin.

    • xtasy 13.2

      Yeah, I have always been inclined to be “right wing”!?

  13. KhandallaMan 14

    What is the problem with grey?  

    I spent years of hard learning, working, talking, loving, drinking et al to get them. Grey is to be valued.  I do not see any negative elements inherent in grey.

    Some people are visionless, conservative, inflexible or whatever from their youth.  

    As that great Dubliner GBS said: Youth is wasted on the Young.  

    • geoff 14.1

      There is nothing intrinsically wrong with ‘Grey’ except that, statistically speaking, they are much more likely to represent capitalist interests rather than the interests of…..well actual people.

      • prism 14.1.1

        Grey. And I think conservative. And often not interested in debating it. Too old to change what beliefs have got concreted in.

    • Dr Terry 14.2

      KH. Yes, it is all too easy to slip into ageism. Many older people have learned an awful lot about life (and politics).

    • lprent 14.3

      Hey I am quite Grey.

      But I have been always amazed at how each year for the last 20 years how the conference got steadily greyer. There were always the mayflies of young labour, but few persisted.

      This looks like a generational transition is taking place. People I saw in young labour years ago have reappeared.

      • Huginn 14.3.1

        That’s wonderful news.

        This is the generation that has grown up with a Neo-Liberal ideology that deliberately isolates the individual and forces them to act self-interestedly. I’ve always been anxious that it would turn them off political engagement.

  14. lprent 15

    Moira is up on stage.

    “Making important decisions about being a modern party”
    Largest conference since 1988

    • Jim Nald 15.1

      Yes, I too want to vote Labour (again).
      But the current leadership is making it so difficult.
      I would have been at the conference if it wasn’t for personal matters to attend to this weekend.

      I hope the Labour Party will rediscover and reconnect its soul, head and heart again this weekend.

      The country needs them to before the current lot in government continue to undermine our society and economy.

      • Dr Terry 15.1.1

        Going by Shearer’s latest, we might just as well leave Key in office (which I certainly do not want!) Shearer wishes to take on Key concerning the economy. He is not particularly interested in social sorrows. If the problems of society are properly addressed, the economy will soon be looking up.

  15. lprent 16

    Jacinda Arden is up.

    She is attempting bribery. Everyone who says something nice to the media will get one less letter from the head office asking for money.

    Hey what do I get?

  16. the sprout 17

    Glad you’re there lynn. Hope you don’t get any aggravation directed at ts

  17. lprent 18

    David Shearer up.

    “Becoming a more transparent democratic party.”

    The emphasis in the speech is definitely on the reform of the party so far.

    The organisation of the Obama campaign has obviously made a real impact on thinking. I will (cynically) believe it when I see that attitude express into actual organisation.

  18. karol 19

    Were there details about party reform, or is that to come?

  19. lprent 20

    Len Brown up.

    He was at the 1988 conference. Points out that the numbers were there for quite a different reason.

  20. KhandallaMan 21

    Higlights of David Shearer’s Speech:

    New Zealand is better under Labour.
    The Democrats won last week by organising from the bottom up.  We will take their ideas. 
    We will also take ideas from the Australian Labour Party.
    1,000 a week leaving for Australia.  Many people feel that under national things are going backwards.
    The shine is coming off National.
    A common theme do disappointment. A sense of being let down by National.

     
    • lprent 21.1

      Good précis. I’m afraid that I am far more interested in the organizational stuff. Shades of being a organizer activist for decades.

      Damn I need to turn prediction off. Keeps rewriting my typing.

      • hush minx 21.1.1

        Do you think they realise that organising from the ground up often requires blogging? they may want to rethink the dark rooms and generally disparaging comments then…

        • AmaKiwi 21.1.1.1

          David Shearer CANNOT organize the way Obama did because he is an elitist.

          In his guts he hates the idea that the party and country should be run by anyone other than “the right sort of people.”

          If he was not an elitist, he would have the leader elected ONLY by the members. He would support binding referendums. He would not have taken the leadership last year when he saw Cunliffe was the people’s favorite.

        • QoT 21.1.1.2

          I do wonder if it’s sunk in to Labour’s thinking that there are a lot of different ways to be grassroots, and the kind of grassroots movement you get from engaging young/disengaged/marginalized groups online is very different from engaging low-paid workers in union halls.

          It’s pretty basic audience/channel/message planning.

      • xtasy 21.1.2

        lprent: I am starting to feel sorry for you there, being “media” now. So the agenda is “wait until the gloss and paint drops off National and Key” to win the next election?!

        What a bloody cheapskate, useless cop-out! If that is a “strategy” and “organisation”, I will organise the next coup d’etat in Mainland China tomorrow!

  21. mikey 22

    [deleted]

    Hey a new name for this outfit. “The Double Standard.”

    [lprent: bye. Troll. ]

  22. KhandallaMan 23

    Len Brown: 

    A cracker. An understandable focus on Auckland: but makes it relevant to wider domestic concerns and world issues. 

    Kids are asking for hope. We need leadership that will give them that hope.

    Auckland Council strategies are delivering a great city.  

    The Rail strategy is critical and Len is grateful for Labour support.

    2m population by 2030. We need 30,000 houses a year.  

    Len wants to know what the Abour Policy is for Housing.

    More Pools, Libraries and Parks.

    And NOT selling Assets like Airport and Port. 

    • lprent 23.1

      Yep. That last one was particularly great.

      • Bob 23.1.1

        Isn’t the Airport already a mixed ownership model? In fact, from what I can see, the Auckland City Council only own 22.5% of the Airport, so isn’t this worse than what National are proposing for the power companies?

    • gnomic 23.2

      Libraries, no surely not, they are so yesterday. Only the other day a letter to the editor of the Waikato Times pointed out they need to be scrapped.

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/waikato-times/opinion/letters/7931657/Letter-Get-rid-of-libraries

      ‘Public libraries are becoming the repository of deadbeats and the dispossessed.

      Why should homeowners (read ratepayers) cater for them.

      Libraries are no longer a needed public service. Time has moved on. Access to knowledge has changed and it now costs a fraction of what it used to.’

      All you need to know is on Google. Any questions?

      Just as well a library for the sprawl suburbs in the north of Hamilton is on hold more or less indefinitely.

  23. mikey 24

    [deleted]
    [lprent: bye. Troll. ]

  24. karol 25

    Whitney Houston song?  Is that meant to be inspirational?

    And Mariah Carey?

    • Jim Nald 25.1

      Not a duet. Not ‘When You Believe’ from the Prince of Egypt? Haahaa.

      • karol 25.1.1

        It seems it is a duet! 

        • Jim Nald 25.1.1.1

          (Hah, I am good. Blowing my own trumpet)

          Oh that Disney stuff.
          Labour praying for a miracle now ..

          Here are the lyrics after the Youtube clip ..

          Many nights we prayed
          With no proof anyone could hear
          In our hearts a hope for a song
          We barely understood
          Now we are not afraid
          Although we know there’s much to fear
          We were moving mountains
          Long before we knew we could, whoa, yes
          There can be miracles
          When you believe
          Though hope is frail
          It’s hard to kill
          Who knows what miracles
          You can achieve
          When you believe somehow you will
          You will when you believe
          [Mmmmmmmmmyeah]
          Mmmyeah
          In this time of fear
          When prayer so often proves in vain
          Hope seems like the summer bird
          Too swiftly flown away
          Yet now I’m standing here
          My hearts so full, I can’t explain
          Seeking faith and speakin words
          I never thought I’d say
          There can be miracles
          When you believe (When you believe)
          Though hope is frail
          It’s hard to kill (Mmm)
          Who knows what miracles
          You can achieve (You can achieve)
          When you believe somehow you will
          You will when you believe
          [Hey]
          [Ooh]
          They don’t always happen when you ask
          And it’s easy to give in to your fears
          But when you’re blinded by your pain
          Can’t see the way, get through the rain
          A small but still, resilient voice
          Says love is very near, oh [Oh]
          There can be miracles (Miracles)
          When you believe (Boy, when you believe, yeah) [Though hope is frail]
          Though hope is frail [Its hard]
          It’s hard to kill (Hard to kill, oh, yeah)
          Who knows what miracles
          You can achieve (You can achieve, oh)
          When you believe somehow you will (Somehow, somehow, somehow)
          Somehow you will (I know, I know, know)
          You will when you believe [When you]
          (Ohoh)
          [You will when you]
          (You will when you believe)
          [Oohoohooh]
          [Oh... oh]
          [When you believe]
          [When you believe]

          • Jim Nald 25.1.1.1.1

            So will the Shearer leadership team’s slogan for 2014 General Elections be:

            Leap of Faith – Vote for Labour!

            • AmaKiwi 25.1.1.1.1.1

              Cunliffe’s recent speeches have stressed the need for us to work together (business, labor, government) to develop modern industries for the green technology age.

              Building more houses won’t do it. Nor will the Nat’s more milk and mines.

  25. karol 26

    Well, I hope they are serious about transformation and organising from the bottom up.  Does that mean they HAVE been listening to the members?  And maybe one or two Standartisa Labour members?

    • mikey 26.1

      [deleted]
      [lprent: bye. Troll. ]

    • AmaKiwi 26.2

      No, they have NOT been listening.

      That’s why they came up with 40% members; 40% caucus; and 20% affiliates to elect the leader.

      Under that formula a caucus vote is worth 1,647 more than my vote.

      Supposedly a central Labour party policy is democracy. There is only ONE definition of democracy:

      “One person, one vote.”

      To David Shearer and Grant Robertson and the policy council: What part of that sentence do you NOT understand?

  26. KhandallaMan 27

    A very immediate, relevant and inspirational speech by Nigel Haworth.

    Here is his profile fom Auckland Uni. 

    http://staff.business.auckland.ac.nz/5337.aspx
     

  27. KhandallaMan 28

    Prof Haworth says National are “A do nothing, sit on their backside government”

    He says “Benign neglect can no longe be tolerated”

    (I wish some of his points had been up on PowerPoint. I hope his speech is posted up on Red Alert and the Standard?) 

     

  28. KhandallaMan 29

    Dr Judy McGregor giving a smart entertaining and serious speech on women in our society.  

    https://alumnionline.massey.ac.nz/NetCommunity/SSLPage.aspx?pid=440
     

    Extract: 
     Since 2003 she has been the Equal Employment Opportunities Commissioner at the Human Rights Commission, focusing on pay equity, ageism in the workplace and extending equal employment opportunities in the public and private sectors.

     
    She has worked with human rights institutions in Jordan, Palestine, Malaysia and with journalists in the Pacific Rim to develop media and communications strategies around human rights issues. In 2006 she was awarded the Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to journalism.
    • karol 29.1

      Sounds good!  Partly on the topic  I posted on today?  Gender and political representation – also equal pay.

  29. ianmac 30

    Silent observer I am. Interesting stuff. Thanks Iprent.

  30. KhandallaMan 31

    A good opening evening, followed by a few drinks accompanied by some Top-class jazz. 

    I heard the Affiliates session went well today: plenty of good speeches in favour of more open democracy: Tolich and the two usual suspects from the leadership spoke against! And the usual suspects did not win…

    The two special guests, Judy McGregor and Nigel Haworth, were fantastic.  Inspired guest selection HO!

    The Mayor of Auckland, the hosting city, is an old school mate of Shearer’s.  As a De La Salle Club player, Len played against Shearer and Shearer says Len was a full-on mouthy competitor. 
    Tonight Len out-played and out-mouthed Shearer again. Len went well beyond normal local government and Super-city scope to sharply highlight housing, employment and youth issues very very effectively. 

    Len upstaged “my mate” David! 

    Naughty Len. 
     

  31. xtasy 32

    It is “amazing”, how guys like Len Brown come out with the “people talk” every time there is an election or a conference going. Does he really mean what he says, or does he think we are all thick as planks?

    His silence on the Ports of Auckland industrial dispute is NOT forgotten by me, nor have I heard him say anything about the new looming industrial dispute there.

    Len, I would have thought more of you a few years back, but to me, you are as hollow as a disemboweled animal stuffed for decoration for a dedicated, habitual, old fashioned hunter.

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    The Jackal | 29-07
  • Why my children took part in a playful protest against LEGO’s partner...
    Jessica Edberg is a mother of two. Her daughter, Lily, aged 7, took part in a playful protest yesterday against LEGO's partnership with Shell. 50 kids in total protested by building three giant LEGO Arctic animals outside of Shell's HQ...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 29-07
  • Race to the Bottom or a Fairer Society?
    In a season when some small parties are indulging in competitive racism it is important to remind ourselves of the great gift of living in our country, a Pacific nation with a Treaty that affirms a peaceful negotiation. The Orewa...
    frogblog | 29-07
  • 3 reasons to vote this election
    Here are three Bills before Parliament that have not passed their third and final vote. The next Parliament will decide if these three Bills become law or not. If you want to have your...
    Tertiary Education Union | 29-07
  • Poll of Polls update – 30 July 2014
    So the latest One News Colmar Brunton poll came out on Sunday. I was up in Tauranga, preparing for a trial, which meant no blogging (plus, it’s remarkably difficult to update a Poll of Polls and then blog about it,...
    Occasionally erudite | 29-07
  • TSB Today: Broken English
    In my post at The Daily Blog today — Broken English, broken government, broken climate — I take a look Bill English’s unguarded comments on climate change. Apparently, it’s a non-issue. As you might expect, I am somewhat less than...
    Hot Topic | 29-07
  • The truth about women
    Marianne Elliott is a former employee of the Human Rights Commission here, and the author of Zen Under Fire, about her time working for human rights in Afghanistan. Here's the remarkable and must-read guest post she has put up about...
    The Hand Mirror | 29-07
  • When the mainstream media go feral: the descent into sheer farce, according...
    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    Frankly Speaking | 29-07
  • When the mainstream media go feral: the descent into sheer farce, according...
    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    Frankly Speaking | 29-07
  • $212 million in spending on roads with few benefits
    A couple of days ago I received a bunch of documents from an OIA request to the NZTA on the $212 million in regional road spending announced recently. I haven’t been able to look at them yet seeing as I’m away however...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • State Department cuts through the acid political environment on oceans and ...
    Secretary Kerry hosted a remarkable conference in June called simply Our Ocean. It enlisted international policy makers, scientists, and the private sector to take action to ensure a healthy ocean for the future. The conference laid out the science, impacts, and...
    Skeptical Science | 29-07
  • Vote Choice: Winston Peters – the Conservative
    Vote Choice: Winston Peters – the (well, a) Conservative This week’s featured politician is Winston Peters. According to Peters life begins at conception because…the royal baby (?!). We know this because, again, Bob McCroskie from Family First did the hard work for us...
    ALRANZ | 29-07
  • National Makes Jokes About Domestic Violence, and Now Unemployment
    How far we have fallen in NZ that our current Government spends much of it’s time in Parliament making jokes about domestic violence, and today – unemployment. Key and some of his dishonest thieving Ministers have in the past few...
    An average kiwi | 29-07
  • Guest post at the Standard: Walking through the wrong door is the least of ...
    I have a guest post over at the Standard right now – Walking through the wrong door is the least of Gerry’s problems. Jump over there and read it in full! What we need in Christchurch is more houses, now....
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 29-07
  • Minor Party pre-campaign pontifications
    A look at the tracking polls for small parties helps explain what’s been happening over the last few days (larger interactive version here); The Conservatives are only slightly higher than they were last election suggesting they’ll get 2.6% max. Probably...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • Minor Party pre-campaign pontifications
    A look at the tracking polls for small parties helps explain what’s been happening over the last few days (larger interactive version here); The Conservatives are only slightly higher than they were last election suggesting they’ll get 2.6% max. Probably...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • An abhorrent innovation
    The Rt. Hon. Humphrey Horswell, QSM gives his opinion on the recently-released National Party list...
    Imperator Fish | 29-07
  • Stuart’s 100: #2 Whitcoulls Queen Street
    Urban designer Stuart Houghton has set himself a personal project of coming up with 100 ideas for improving Auckland at the rate of one a day. He is Tweeting them here: @HoughtonSd  Discussing this project with Stuart he said that “I see the city is...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • The OIA and the Statutes Amendment Bill
    Back in February the government introduced a Statutes Amendment Bill to make numerous "technical, short, and non-controversial" amendments to legislation. The bill included several amendments to the OIA and LGOIMA which I thought fell into that category. The bill was...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • How We Solve The Income Inequality Problem
    click here for some very good ideas from the New Economics Foundation...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • How to make farmers clean up their act
    Order them to stop milking until they've fixed their effluent problems:A Thames farming company has been hit with a $47,000 fine and ordered to stop milking until it fixed the overflowing effluent system at its Kopu farm. The order came...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • The Truth About What Keeps People In Poverty From Those Who Live It
    Click here to read this report from the Family 100 Research Project July 2014...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • Eye Candy, Window Dressing and Deep Pockets.
    I came back from six weeks abroad to see the beginning of the Internet Party’s “party party” launches. It leaves me with some questions. It seems that what the Internet Party has done is this. Using Kim Dotcom’s wallet as...
    Kiwipolitico | 29-07
  • Wealth, Income and Inequality in Australia.
    worth a read click here...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • World News Brief, Tuesday July 29
    Top of the AgendaLull in Gaza as Pressure for Cease-Fire Mounts...
    Pundit | 29-07
  • National’s roads are pure pork
    Last month the government announced it would be spending $212 million on regional roads. Every single one of the priority projects (and eight of nine lower priority projects) is in a National-held electorate, which suggested immediately that this was pre-election...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • Another fluoridation whopper from Declan Waugh
    Declan Waugh is a self-proclaimed “scientist and fluoride researcher” who seems to spend all his time misrepresenting and distorting  scientific literature and health data to promote his anti-fluoride cause. Waugh has an avid following, among fellow anti-fluoride activists and propagandists. The...
    Open Parachute | 29-07
  • Whyte supremacy
    Emphatically, he says, an ACT party led by Whyte would not go to war on Treaty issues. “I’ve got no interest in Maori-bashing as a political game.” Dr Jamie Whyte back in January when he assumed leadership of ACT.  The...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • Whyte supremacy
    Emphatically, he says, an ACT party led by Whyte would not go to war on Treaty issues. “I’ve got no interest in Maori-bashing as a political game.” Dr Jamie Whyte back in January when he assumed leadership of ACT.  The...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • New Fisk
    It's not just radicalised Islamists - what about foreign fighters who flock to the other side?...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • How we should deal with rorting MPs
    Prosecute them for theft:Former parliamentary speaker Peter Slipper tried three times to have criminal charges thrown out of court following claims he misused his travel entitlements during several trips to some of the Canberra region's most prestigious wineries. But three...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • July 14 AT Board Meeting
    The Auckland Transport Board is meeting today and as usual I’ve had a look through the papers to see if there is anything interesting. Below is the collection of items or comments that caught my eye. The rest of this...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • Powerful and Cold-hearted
    click here to read this compelling article ...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • Wilkinson and Picket Lectures in New Zealand
    Click here to get these lectures. Folks who missed the Douglas Robb lectures last month can view them here l...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • The Changing Priorities Of Protest
    The Changing Face Of Protest: In marked contrast to the theologically- and ideologically-driven protest movements of the 1960s, 70s and 80s, contemporary protest, like this demonstration against the latest Israeli assault on Gaza, tends to be led by those whose stake in...
    Bowalley Road | 29-07
  • Why Voters Aren’t Angrier About Economic Inequality
    This is the USA but there are strong parallels here in New zealand ...
    Closing the Gap | 28-07
  • Goodbye Nick Smith
    On the back of recently trying to silence DOC over their concerns about the impact of the Ruataniwha irrigation project on water quality in central Hawke's Bay, Nick Smith is once again bullying a statuary body with threats that clearly...
    The Jackal | 28-07
  • Minister for Conservation of What?