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David Cunliffe on the State of the Nation

Written By: - Date published: 4:11 pm, January 22nd, 2014 - 185 comments
Categories: david cunliffe, labour - Tags: ,

I’d just like to say thanks for all of the feedback The Standard’s community gave in the recent post about my upcoming state of the nation. Many of the comments reflect my own thoughts, and also gave me new insight into New Zealanders’ concerns. More than a couple made me laugh out loud. It’s great to see such an enthusiastic progressively-minded group of people in action.

2014 marks an opportunity to do things differently. Over the last thirty years New Zealand has been stuck in an ideological rut, and John Key’s government has made things worse for everyone but the wealthiest few.

Like you, I want a government that ensures opportunity for all Kiwis, one that reduces the gap between the haves and the have-nots. That means supporting a high-value economy, where we learn from the lessons of the GFC and deliver better jobs and higher wages for all New Zealanders.

Today I have taken a necessary step toward putting these values to work, and have dropped two policies from our manifesto – GST off fresh fruit and vegetables and the first $5000 tax-free policy.

While the aims of these policies were admirable, dropping them frees up around $1.5 billion per annum which can be used more effectively to help Kiwi families when it is targeted better to deliver help where needed.

This is a part of a comprehensive economic and social package that we will be announcing in the lead up to the election. I’ll be outlining the first of these policies at my State of the Nation speech on Monday.

I’d like to invite you to that speech. So far we’ve had such a great response we’ve had to switch to a larger venue. If you’ve already signed up for a ticket you’ll get an update, if you haven’t then you can sign up here

We’ll also be live-streaming the speech. Hopefully you can join me online if you can’t make it in person.

The new details are:

Venue: Kelston Girls’ College Auditorium (corner of Great North Road and West Coast Road)

Time/Date: 1pm on Monday the 27th of January

Register now

We need a government that works with everyone for the social and economic benefit of everyone.

This Monday I’ll be outlining my vision for that government.

185 comments on “David Cunliffe on the State of the Nation”

  1. blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 1

    Great to hear that the next Prime Minister of NZ is reading The Standard and giving positive feedback to comments here.

  2. MaxFletcher 2

    “Today I have taken a necessary step toward putting these values to work, and have dropped two policies from our manifesto – GST off fresh fruit and vegetables and the first $5000 tax-free policy.”

    Isn’t this the third time these policies have been dropped?

    • Grumpy 2.1

      Don’t forget backing out on the “Living Wage”.

      • karol 2.1.1

        Don’t forget backing out on the “Living Wage”.

        How many times do we need to say this on TS today?

        There is no back down on the living wage. The policy remains the same. The living wage is not the same as the minimum wage.

        The living wage policy was in 2013, and still remains, to introduce it in the public service as soon as practical, then include it in a requirement for companies doing contracts for the state, then encourage businesses to adopt it.

        • Not a PS Staffer 2.1.1.1

          Hi Karol

          Two though that come to mind when I see the likes of Grumpy exposing themselves.

          “Don’t argue with idiots: they’ll drag you down to their level then beat you with experience.”

          “Don’t argue with idiots: onlookers might not be able to tell the difference.”

          Dont give Grumpy et al the oxygen of a response.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.2

        Don’t forget that you’re dealing with a lying sack of shit, Karol.

        • Rob 2.1.2.1

          Thats a harsh call on David, geez.

          • McFlock 2.1.2.1.1

            indeed. But not a bad description for the rent-a-tories commenting here today.

          • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.2.1.2

            Oh, ha-ha Rob, I see what you did there. Nice one, well played. I was referring to Grumpy’s mindless repetition of a recently deceased zombie argument, but you knew that.

      • Tracey 2.1.3

        link?

      • tricledrown 2.1.4

        GRRumpy the last time the living wage happened was in the 80s
        feeling hungry
        having a paul henry moment!

    • QoT 2.2

      Nah, the problem is that they were election promises, then Shearer never quite got around to saying whether or not they were still on the table, but they were still in the manifesto so some argued this meant they were technically still policy until explicitly refuted …

      I’m frankly thankful for some clarity on the issue.

      • MaxFletcher 2.2.1

        OK, makes sense.

      • It’s also nice that the reason they’re being dropped is to put a better targetted policy in instead. I liked the thought behind the veggies and fruit reduction, but didn’t think it would be enough to help people who don’t already eat fresh produce.

        Hope to hear that you’ve got some good new ideas on how to better help people get good food while still better targetting the policy than just a GST exemption.

  3. ecossemaid 3

    Yes David …It is time the average man woman and child in this country is able to share in the wealth the country generates.I have had enough of that smug bastard who looks after himself and his mates while ignoring the far greater number of people here that struggle along trying to make ends meet.
    The attitude that only his opinion matters.That the Pike River Families aren’t worth his attention or care.The man who placed a doberman in charge of social welfare.A woman that availed herself of the system when it suited her yet finds it unbearable to think others might need the same assistance.How the hell that ever got elected twice is beyond my understanding.
    So I wish you the greatest success in this election.

  4. George D 4

    Dietary-related factors are 1st, 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 8th among the causes of disease in NZ.

    Together, they impose a huge cost on the people of New Zealand, a cost which is borne disproportionately by the poor – the very people who cannot afford to eat the things that would do them good.

    When you are poor you buy calories, you don’t buy courgettes. There is very strong international evidence that reducing the price of these items increases their consumption, and that removing taxes has little negative spillover (whereas increasing the costs of sugar and fats decreases both their consumption and the consumption of other healthier foods, as food budgets are relatively inelastic among the poor).

    http://www.healthmetricsandevaluation.org/sites/default/files/country-profiles/GBD%20Country%20Report%20-%20New%20Zealand.pdf

    This was a policy that was absolutely worth supporting. Just a few weeks ago this site published an opinion piece looking at how GST increases had disproportionately hurt the poor. Where that GST is applied to the basic necessities of health and life, that injustice is doubly felt.

    • greywarbler 4.1

      The effect of dropping what would be a complex tax to administer on fruit and vegs, should be made up by supplying fruit to schools which they eat at lunchtime or morning tea when they are sitting down. Then they won’t be used as missiles at each other etc. The value would be large in health benefits. And it would be applied equally and direct to the recipients. I see this as ensuring that food and health are delivered in the most effective way.

      • George D 4.1.1

        You know what would be even simpler? A flat tax of 25% for everyone.

        There is a little complexity associated with this. But just a little, and it is a cost that Australia seems to get along with just fine. It’s worth sacrificing simplicity for health and justice.

        • McFlock 4.1.1.1

          so if I go to aus the only tax I will pay is 25%?

          #callingBullshit

        • Murray Olsen 4.1.1.2

          The Australian Tax Office doesn’t seem to have been informed of this 25% flat tax of yours. Back to ACT with you, George D.

    • Bill 4.2

      I dunno George. I don’t entirely disagree with you, but I think there’s more than price has to be taken into account. I’m piss poor but eat a diet comprised of fresh and dried food – ie, fairly healthy by any standard. But then, I’m lucky enough to have lived in the same house for long enough that I’ve been able to establish a veggie garden. As some-one else has pointed out previously, since gardening involves a fair bit of up front cost, those of us on entitlements can’t always afford to get started down that route.

      Then there is the habit of diet. Many people have been trained or taught to buy so-called cheap, pre-packed, stuff in the microwave, throw in the pan chemical…well, it passes as food after a fashion, I guess. Anecdotally, a few times I’ve passed through supermarket checkouts and been asked what *that* – a beetroot – is by the checkout operator. Now sure, they’ve been young people, but even so – to not know a beetroot by sight is kind of scary in my book.

      And then there is the cooking which isn’t unrelated to the above. Many people just can’t. I know of instances where food banks have ‘gratefully’ given away ‘bucket loads’ of basic foodstuff (baking ingredients) to people because they’ve been recognised as belonging to a minority who actually know what to do with the stuff.

      One good thing HC’s Labour led government did was introduce decent food to schools. That would have taken time to filter through and alter eating habits across a proportion of the populace, but them’s the breaks. Then along comes National and stomps it in the name of ‘less government interference and free choice’ with absolutely no thought given to the profit margin or market share of food corporations, of course.

    • Granted, it’s too expensive, especially for those in poverty or below middle income, to eat fresh fruit and vegetables.

      But keep in mind that exempting them from GST can “waste” a lot of money in making fruit and veges cheaper for people who can already afford them. If there’s some good targetted policy on poverty reduction and increasing people’s ability to eat unprocessed food, then that’s good. So I’d say wait and see what the “more targetted approach” is.

  5. Te Reo Putake 5

    A bigger venue? But, David, I just heard John Key say on the radio that you were under pressure from your caucus and the splits in the Labour Party were now obvious. Surely if that was the case, you’d need a smaller venue? Something doesn’t add up. It’s not like DunnoKeyo is a desperate, dissembling doofus … oh, wait.

    • bad12 5.1

      Another Slippery lie for Blip to add to the ever lengthening list He is compiling from the utterances of our soon to be ex-PM ???…

    • David H 5.2

      Oh look here’s an own goal by Cunliffe on the Drilling FFS they are just giving the NON voters yet another reason to just say “Fuck it” Roll over and go back to sleep on that Saturday!

      • Te Reo Putake 5.2.1

        Nah, it’s a non issue for non voters. As most things are. A perfectly sensible position from Cunliffe; if we’re gonna do it, we’re gonna do it safely and with NZers getting a fair cut, as they do in Norway. Should be a vote winner in Taranaki, Otago etc.

        • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.1

          The Norwegians don’t just “get a cut.” They maintain significant ownership of the resource and the extraction company. You may have heard of it? Statoil. We’ve just handed them a whole bunch of exploration rights for fuck all in return. The Norwegians have the formula right, we do not.

          • Te Reo Putake 5.2.1.1.1

            You talking to me?

          • Mongoose 5.2.1.1.2

            So CV are you in favour of what Cunliffe said?

            • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.1.2.1

              In terms of fossil fuel deposits, I’m in favour of a high degree of resource nationalism.

          • Skinny 5.2.1.1.3

            Well said CV, this is a great opportunity for DC to take not only the National stage but also the World stage. The NZLP ‘the soon to be Government of New Zealand’ can announce that as a progress Country New Zealand will be introducing regulations that will bring about change to a more equal society. The Banks, the corporates and the mega wealthy ‘can not be allowed’ to continue to dominate at the price of a just society.

            The time is right to steam the tide. Go for it David we have everything to loose if you don’t!

        • The first question is what Labour consideres “safely”. Because I would have thought any reasonable definition of that word would rule out all current deep-sea drilling.

          The second question is why would we want even more oil when we already have more than enough fossil fuels extracted to dramatically alter the climate into something that probably isn’t habitable by civilisation as we know it? Isn’t the oil business already a rogue agent?

      • newsense 5.2.2

        ehhh.

        Honour the current agreements. Not sign up to a whole lot of new agreements?

        Take the wind out of the sails of Joyce.

  6. greywarbler 6

    As for the speech David – We look forward to it whether we can attend or not. Cheers.

  7. One Anonymous Knucklehead 7

    The devil is in the detail. I’m looking forward to seeing how (and how much) we’re going to get out of the ideological rut.

    National’s abuse of urgency means a lot of corruption to undo. There are whole acts to repeal and replace more-or-less in toto.

    Will Labour be honest enough to acknowledge that the SOE model has failed, for example?

    Looking forward to the speech.

  8. just saying 8

    We are not stupid David. We’ll notice if the new policies primarily support the comfortable middle class like the ghastly policy of providing subsidies on brand-spanking new homes for the children of the aforesaid comfy middle – even if such policies might see a few working class people might get some benefit too.

    We are watching with interest. I’d love to be able to feel able to support Labour again.

    • Tracey 8.1

      +1

      We need a leader and partners who have the guts to tackle the long term stuff, otherwise it’s just tinkering at the edges.

      We need a society where people give a shit about their neighbor instead of constantly judging people they never see or meet.

  9. karol 9

    I’m not so bothered about dropping the GST on veges – depends on what replaces it.

    Not so keen on dropping the $5000 tax free zone – but also depends on what replaces it.

    However, I’m not keen at all on keeping of the policy to raise the super age to 67yrs.

    • bad12 9.1

      Definitely second that on the superannuation policy…

      • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 9.1.1

        Yep +1 to that

        • Arfamo 9.1.1.1

          +1. Greens get both my votes if the 67 entitlement policy is still a goer for Labour at election time. Figure out a better alternative David.

          • Arfamo 9.1.1.1.1

            And sell your fucking mansion. Why not start leading by example? Think about the impact that would have.

    • Bill 9.2

      Short and to the point there Karol, and probably echoing the thoughts of many.

      • McFlock 9.2.1

        yep

        • greywarbler 9.2.1.1

          +2 right.
          Nuts to 67, 65 is right – jobs for the younger, who commit suicide out of depression over not having a job or a future to plan for.
          Advantages for the working over-65s, medical etc. but not super for the individual but spouses can receive half married rate.
          Volunteer work of all sorts to be done part time – contributions by oldsters.
          Right to die at will, after proceeding through various procedures, such as having a will, establishing state of mind.
          Earlier old age pension for the worn-out and invalids and sickness benes. Stop harrassing them.

    • bad12 9.3

      Karol i just asked myself the question, would i trade a move of the superannuation age to 67 for some extremely robust policy which attacks child poverty and bad housing outcomes at the lowest levels of income, my short answer is yes,

      Having said that tho i still remain firm in the belief that raising the age of superannuation coupled with compulsory Kiwisaver contributions is simply Treasury driven neo-liberalism at work,

      In ten years time i am willing to bet that there will be along with a raise in the amount of what is contributed to individuals kiwisavers another push with another TINA attached to again raise the age for super entitlement,

      Such policy i ‘see’ as culminating in very few or no-one getting superannuation, in other words a phase out of the pension by incremental steps…

    • @ karol..+ 1..

      phillip ure..

    • Naki Man 9.5

      People that do manual work will really struggle at age 67.
      I really do feel sorry for people trapped in this type of work.

      • Tracey 9.5.1

        of course you do, that’s why you vote National! :rollseyes:

        • Naki Man 9.5.1.1

          Tracey
          Well done
          National won’t make people work until age 67
          Vote National, retire at 65.
          Are you still struggling with that now?

          • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 9.5.1.1.1

            I do believe that the only thing Tracey was ‘struggling with’ was achieving this: :roll:

            [It is 'roll' not rolleyes Tracey ;) ]

          • Paul 9.5.1.1.2

            Vote Green so you keep you retirement and your grandkids can still enjoy NZ’s environment.

    • felix 9.6

      + another 1 karol

    • Crunchtime 9.7

      Lower the Superannuation age to 18 or so, replace virtually all benefits with it.

      (in other words, Universal Basic Income)

  10. Will@Welly 10

    Thanks David for fronting up. Won’t be there, but will be watching. Obviously you’ve got more to you than someone else has, you’ve hardly said a word and already he’s squealing like a wounded rat. Ah, the life of a money trader, unless you’re rolling in it, life’s just one big fizzer. Go well, David.

  11. bad12 11

    Great to hear you enjoying yourself at Slippery the Prime Ministers expense this morning on RadioNZ National and it’s good to see you have found the Standard to be ‘useful’ as a platform of ideas,

    My belief is it is the ‘real time’ debates here by mainly those of us from ‘the left’ with the odd ‘wing-nut’ thrown in that allows any and every issue to be examined from all angles which makes this site a good read,

    ‘Nail it’ with your speech on Monday Mr Cunliffe….

  12. Karen 12

    Just heard David Cunliffe on Checkpoint saying Labour will not oppose deep-sea oil drilling. This is crazy on so many levels. Was thinking of going along on Monday but I don’t think I’ll bother.

    • karol 12.1

      I prefer the Greens’ policy on deep-sea oil drilling, and am still looking to vote Green Party ths year. But I don’t see it as a reason not to go to the meeting. I intend to go (Cunliffe is my electorate MP right now – who knows come the election as I’m in the new Kelston electorate?).

      I’m going because I want to hear the details of what will repace the dropped policies, and more. And because I want to see the audience reactions, and how Cunliffe performs live – and I can easily get to the venue.

    • chris73 12.2

      Sensible ideas are now spouting forth, you have to aim for the middle ground and Cunliffes now doing that…good on him

      You want to pay the unemployed more and implement living wage malarky well you have to pay for it and drillings one way

      • Tracey 12.2.1

        If chris is praising DC, then Labour are in BIG trouble. he wont vote Labour even when it reduced debt and ran decent surplus. he didnt trust Clark. Hasnt seen anything to suggest Key cant be trusted.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 12.3

      Not quite:

      “…a Labour government would change the law to ensure that all permits meet world best standards.
      Mr Cunliffe says a Labour government would not prohibit deep sea drilling, as proposed by the Greens.

      Labour is considering a model similar to Norway, where the government receives royalties from the proceeds of drilling operations, he says, but no decisions have been made.”

      • Tracey 12.3.1

        agree

        • Colonial Viper 12.3.1.1

          Doesn’t the NZ govt already receive royalties from drilling ops? Thats just the status quo, surely.

          • Tracey 12.3.1.1.1

            I am not talking about 1-5% royalties CV…and I don’t support such a pittance so easily got around by clever book-keepers BUT I support a higher return than now in return for the risk that “we” not the drilling companies are taking.

    • Crunchtime 12.4

      My feeling is that a sensible deep-sea drilling policy would be not to oppose it directly – but to immediately change the law so that companies drilling here are:

      1. required to take adequate safety precautions
      2. responsible for ALL costs incurred in the event of any spill
      3. required to pay a fair share of the profits.

      If this causes the venture to suddenly be too expensive for Anadarko and Shell et al and they then have to pack up and go home, that will say something about the procedure of deep sea oil drilling in the first place.

      New Zealand for New Zealanders first, foreign companies last.

      • George D 12.4.1

        Oil drilling is insane.

        Either we keep it under the ocean, or we destroy our climate and our ecosystems, and lose most of north Waikato. We don’t get to do both. Mr Cunliffe and Mr Key seem to think we can, and they are wrong.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 12.4.1.1

          Not quite, George. Mainstream climatologists pretty much assume we’re going to burn all the oil we can get our hands on. They are far more concerned about the coal: there’s so much more of it.

          • George D 12.4.1.1.1

            The climatologists I read are concerned about the burning of carbon. Oil, as you know, is mostly made from carbon and hydrogen. There are some nice graphics near the top of this page illustrating our current situation – I’m sure some Labour members are invested in not destroying s habitable future for a quick buck.

            Continuing to fossick for fossil fuels is sure way to destroy our future and wed us to our past.

    • Not a PS Staffer 12.5

      What is wrong with New Zealand having an income from oil?
      If it can be produced safely and the right royalty regime is in place them I’m all for it. Go Cunliffe!

      The workers of NZ have bee screwed for ages: this might be a chance to fund significant improvement in housing, education and care for the aged. An oil income might stop the worrying talk of extending pension age to 67.

      It is disappointing to see those who rightly criticize climate deniers for ignoring science on matters of global warming then ignoring science themselves when it come to drilling.

  13. @ david cunnliffe..

    ..cheered to hear you took note of the feedback in that thread..

    ..i felt the ‘there is an alternative’-meme/idea is one with some potency..

    ..as a commenter pointed out..it both appeals to the young/gen xers..(raised on t.i.n.a..)

    ..and it repudiates that rightwing lie/justification..

    ..that has echoed down the decades..for those older..

    ..you could wrap that around almost anything..

    ..i look forward to yr speech next mon..

    ..i will be there..quills sharpened..

    ..leaning forward in anticipation..

    (btw..it would help burnish/flesh-out yr ‘human/person’-image..

    ..were you to tell us which comments in that mega-thread made you laugh out loud..and for why..?

    ..and with..?..or at..?..)

    ..phillip ure..

    • David H 13.1

      And then ignores everything said on the Deep sea oil drilling. And says that labour support it. Great, start a war with the Greens. No wonder Shonky is Pissing hi’sself laughing at Amateur hour.

      • phillip ure 13.1.1

        of course..david h..such oil/drill-pimping from labour..(yoo-hoo..!..c.v..!..in-step with leader there..eh..?..)

        ..will be good for the green vote..

        ..as green labourites..will be able to give the greens their party vote..

        ..knowing it won’t be wasted..

        ..and that the more green mp’s..the greener this progressive coalition will be..

        ..the greens should be morris-dancing in celebration..

        ..phillip ure..

        • karol 13.1.1.1

          don’t know about morris dancing, but they are yweting about it – gives them a distinction from Labour.

          I see Glower is caiming it’s a mistake as it shows a rift between Labour and Greens – if that’s how it works, it’s worse for Key because NZ First disagreees with the Nats on a key policy platform – assett sales.

          But Glower just makes things up anyway.

          • George D 13.1.1.1.1

            It’s a huge rift. The anger expressed within the Greens privately today has been immense and heartfelt. People are talking about voting down a coalition agreement with Labour over this issue – such a coalition has become significantly less likely, and should not be taken for granted.

            It is about equivalent to how I imagine most here would feel if the party they depended on said it was going to abolish unions.

            • Zorr 13.1.1.1.1.1

              I don’t know your credentials here George D but I would be *very* surprised if anyone in the Greens actually got upset over Labour policy. When Labour says dick things, telling the Greens how to act without any quid quo pro then get upset.

              I mean, isn’t that why you vote Green – so that they represent your interests in Parliament and not Labour? There is always a degree of horse trading in any coalition.

            • weka 13.1.1.1.1.2

              It’s a huge rift. The anger expressed within the Greens privately today has been immense and heartfelt. People are talking about voting down a coalition agreement with Labour over this issue – such a coalition has become significantly less likely, and should not be taken for granted.

              It is about equivalent to how I imagine most here would feel if the party they depended on said it was going to abolish unions.

              That’s all pretty curious. For one, what Cunliffe has said isn’t too different from what Labour have been saying all along, is it (in comparison to the GP policy)? So it’s not like this is new or news. Secondly, it’s possible that this is Labour’s way of limiting oil exploration without being seen to be anti-jobs. If the new laws set the bar so high that companies choose not to drill, isn’t that good? And if this means that Labour gets to form the next govt, is that not also good?

              I’d like to see Labour form a govt this year, for bloody obvious reasons, not least to stop NACT giving the go ahead on ripping out more resources. If the GP don’t go into coalition, are you suggesting that they let NACT form govt, or are you suggesting that they stay out of govt but support Labour as a minority govt?

              • George D

                Until this point there had been contradictory messages, with Labour taking a populist stance against ‘risky drilling’ on the one hand, and Shane (“drill it, mine it, burn it”) Jones talking boldly about the need to facilitate the extraction of oil. I and others were not sure how that would be resolved.

                I am saying that the Alliance experience is instructive – it is hard to imagine the Green Party giving confidence and supply to a Government that allows off-shore oil drilling.


                I’d like to see Labour form a govt this year, for bloody obvious reasons, not least to stop NACT giving the go ahead on ripping out more resources.

                I’m curious as to how (apart from the nationalisation of a share of the profits) KiwiDrill is any different to NACTdrill. Labour still support the expansion of the coal industry, and during the last Government were strong supporters of new coal mines, even on highly important conservation land.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  Here’s why I think you’re wrong. In government, the Green Party will be in a position to implement a whole raft of policies, including direct input into new offshore drilling regulations.

                  That’s as good as it gets barring a massive (like 20%) rise in the party’s polling. Personally I’d like to see a ban on new coal exploration and extraction, and if I had to agree to the toughest set of offshore drilling regulations in the world to get it, I’d be in with a grimace.

                • weka

                  “I am saying that the Alliance experience is instructive – it is hard to imagine the Green Party giving confidence and supply to a Government that allows off-shore oil drilling.”

                  You haven’t answered my question. Do you think that the GP will let National form a govt rather than support Labour? Or, if the GP won’t give Labour confidence and supply or a coalition agreement, what are the alternatives?

                  I’m curious as to how (apart from the nationalisation of a share of the profits) KiwiDrill is any different to NACTdrill. Labour still support the expansion of the coal industry, and during the last Government were strong supporters of new coal mines, even on highly important conservation land.

                  We’re all waiting to see if Labour are actually moving away for neoliberalism or not. Have Labour specified what KiwiDrill is? If not, then I still don’t get your comment at 10:14pm last night, where you say that people in the GP are reacting strongly against what Cunliffe has said, to the point of wanting to refuse a coalition. Why are you reacting as if this (Labour on drilling) is all set in stone, or is substantially different than before yesterday?

                  I’d also like to know where the conversations are happening amongst the Greens, where people are talking about refusing a coalition because of Labour’s policy on drilling.

                  • KJT

                    Not hearing much about refusing co-operation with Labour. More on how we can work together. Including around the differences.

                    Greens are discussing the same moral conflict as Labour, between jobs and the environment.

                    And trying to find a way ahead that looks after both.

      • Naki Man 13.1.2

        DC is showing that he will not be pushed around by the Greens
        He has to appeal to the centre left voters

      • Skinny 13.1.3

        You only heard what you wanted to hear chap. To my ears DC said “sure deep sea drill under tough regulations, f**** up and you’ll have a clean up plan in place to our satisfaction, and the compensation costs are going to wound the crap out of ya” It’s called regulation, yes get use to that word as it is going to be in place every which way the mega wealthy look in this country under Labour.

  14. Tracey 14

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0509/S00438.htm

    Dunne on Peters: ‘Can we trust him? No, we can’t!’

  15. freedom 15

    Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts Mr Cunliffe.
    Hopefully more politicians take the opportunity to experience the interactive political environment that is developing in Aotearoa.

    I understand 1.5 Billion is not chicken feed, but after seeing the 5K policy was to be dropped, I read this, “which can be used more effectively to help Kiwi families when it is targeted better to deliver help where needed.”

    I do hope this isn’t polispeak for a political party yet again overlooking the growing number of single adult low income people who populate this land. To whom 5 thousand dollars is certainly not chicken feed.

    • it’s the tax on five grand..freedom..not five grand..

      ..and it should be first 15 grand tax-free..(for those up to a certain income..)

      phillip ure..

      • freedom 15.1.1

        thanks for that phillip, mistakes matter. I will doubleproofread more carefully in future.

        ‘To whom the tax on 5 thousand .. ‘ was what I obviously meant to write

      • Crunchtime 15.1.2

        Flat-ish tax for low incomes with a UBI is how I’d do it – making sure all those currently earning between the median wage and zero are better off, and removing disincentives to work.

        • phillip ure 15.1.2.1

          @ crunchtime..

          ..the beauty of a sweeping ending-poverty-for-all measure..

          ..is that this will mean we will be able to do away with that revenue-gulping behemoth..

          ..the work and income dept..

          ..there will be no longer a need for them..

          ..what’s not to love about that..?

          ..for leftwingers and rightwingers..?

          ..(even the libertarians should be nodding along..)

          ..and there is one guaranteed-economic-fact from such a measure..

          ..and that is that any/all monies funnelled into ending poverty..

          ..provide an immediate and ongoing economic fillip..

          ..as of course all that money goes straight back into retailers’ tills..

          ..spent on the basics of life..

          ..what’s not to love about all that..?

          ..phillip ure..

          • phillip ure 15.1.2.1.1

            and what to do with all those monuments to themselves they have built for themselves in every town..?

            ..that’s easy..!

            ..a very large number of them will make ideal community/arts-centres..

            ..(whatever it is deemed each area needs most.)

            ..give them back to the people..

            ..after all..they paid for them..

            ..eh..?

            ..phillip ure..

  16. gem 16

    Thanks David; it’s refreshing to hear the country’s ”ideological rut” malaise acknowledged
    While premature until we hear more detail on Monday, I am wary of dropping universal policies in favour of more targeted support for people raising children, when it’s at the expense of the aforesaid universal policies. Depending on how it’s configured, such targeted assistance may not reduce inequality, and can become a wage subsidy for employers.
    In Australia, individual income is tax free up to $18,200AU!
    While you have signalled there will be a tax increase for those at the top, the low-end tax break would make a huge difference to people struggling at the bottom.

    • Rodel 16.1

      gem…
      In Australia, individual income is tax free up to $18,200AU!
      Is that true?

      • karol 16.1.1

        Yep – easy to find. Aus tax free threshold.

      • gem 16.1.2

        Yes, that’s right Rodel; thanks for the link Karol. Australia has done a better job of softening the effects of neoliberalism. It’s due in my view to the cultural primacy of the good old Aussie battler, for which we don’t really have an equivalent here.

        • Bill 16.1.2.1

          It’s due in my view to the cultural primacy of the good old Aussie battler…

          Got some vague notion that it had to do with their two tier governance structure. Harder to ram shit through two accountable layers than it is one….too much to hi-jack?

        • George D 16.1.2.2

          It’s one reason Kiwis leave and never come back (I know it’s not fashionable to talk about things that Australia does better). Having a tax free threshold means much more money in the pocket for the working poor. (Though we have WFF, which achieves some of the same things for parents with children under 18).

        • George D 16.1.2.3

          It’s one reason Kiwis leave and never come back (I know it’s not fashionable to talk about things that Australia does better). Having a tax free threshold means much more money in the pocket for the working poor. (Though we have WFF, which achieves some of the same things for parents with children under 18).

        • millsy 16.1.2.4

          “softening the effects of neo-liberalism”?

          WTF?

          You have Victoria’s Labor leader promising to sell the port of Melbourne (quickly), as well as Hawke and Keating openly boasting of cutting government spending and calling for the Coalition to cut, cut cut. — not to mention Labor premiers flogging stuff off like it was going out of fashion.

          The ALP is probably more right wing than our Labour party.

          • gem 16.1.2.4.1

            Millsy, what you have raised does not alter the fact that in terms of taxation, the average Aussie has received more protection from the market economy than the average Kiwi.

          • phillip ure 16.1.2.4.2

            but back when our union leaders dropped their trousers..bent over..and said ‘please be gentle..!’..

            ..and then went and whimpered in the corner..while waiting for knighthoods/seats on boards etc..

            ..the australian union leaders kept their pants firmly buckled..

            ..and told the tumescent neo-lib/randites..

            ..to just ‘fuck off!’..

            ..i think this is the ‘difference’ being referred to..

            phillip ure..

            • gem 16.1.2.4.2.1

              yep … essentially we kiwis have a more defeatest mindset.

              • Colonial Viper

                Some types will even sell out for just half a dozen pieces of silver.

                • tricledrown

                  kiwis were to poor to take time off work to protest and pay unions.
                  and some unions were over the top like the perennial strikes on the inter island ferries which stuffed up huge numbers of poorer peoples holidays .
                  the rich flew in those days.
                  those strikes had a flow on effect because of delivery of products food excetera put others jobs at risk.
                  the unions run mainly by poms just flexed their muscles for the sake of it.
                  tactics were nieve and when push came to shove people deserted the unions because they went to far .
                  those unions now are gone.
                  we need unions to keep the work place safe and pay living wages.
                  now we have only 17% or less of the Workforce unionized its gone to far the other way

                  • KJT

                    A few unions did that, most didn’t.

                    No mention of the rail ferry employers deliberately spinning out the dispute until the holidays. Or the fact that the seaman’s union would always offer to take passengers and cars for no pay, only to be locked out by the employers. “No rail, no sail” it was called.

                    Wasn’t sorry to see the cooks and stewards union go. But if you know the history, of how English shipowners treated seamen during WW2, it was not surprising they were bloody minded.

                    We have no shortage of militant and greedy employers unions, and employers. No one suggests removing them, however.

                    • greywarbler

                      KJT
                      That was good stuff. I didn’t remember about all of the proceedings of the unions and employers. It isn’t surprising to find that both sides could have done better. The unions were pretty well off in the end so there was no excuse for bloodymindedness because of the war, which was long over.

                      The Cooks and Stewards were another story. And I feel that their shenanigans were the basis for the determined anti-union stance becoming rock hard and so destructive right to today.

                      All unions have to think on about their demands. I was looking at Ansett in NZ the other day. The pilots went on a prolonged strike because the airline wanted a change. The pilots apparently had been working 11 hours a week, 15 were wanted, and their holiday time was 9 weeks a year plus 11 statutory days and the idea was to push those extra days into the 9 week period.

                      No wonder Ansett went down in Oz and here, and unfortunately the string of our kite was tied to it. Reading about it is a sad tale.

      • tricledrown 16.1.3

        not completely
        work cover in most states taxed separately
        compulsory health care taxed separately
        compulsory super 9%

        • gem 16.1.3.1

          Fair enough; Australia also has lower GST (10%, compared with our 15%, plus no GST on fresh food, healthcare, approved education courses, and some basic services).

  17. millsy 17

    The tax free threshold and taking GST of F and G were very expensive polices that delivered few tangible benefits (or spread them too thinly).

    I look forward to DC’s speech. He has the golden oppurtunity to make it his “Orewa”. Im not going to speculate on what could be in it, but the the sign that his party is thinking about an SWF is promising. That would really cause a lot of panic in the 9th floor, and would make quite a few people think about voting Labour. as they would see some tangible benefits from drilling.

  18. Jenny 18

    I think the preliminary statements coming from David Cunliffe preceding his speech on the 27th raise more questions than answers.

    Maybe this is his intent.

    So it will be good to see if some of these questions are answered in his speech on the 27th.

    On climate change:

    Gareth Hughes and Jeanette Fitzsimmons of the Green Party have both said that Deep Sea Oil must be opposed on climate change grounds.

    So I was distressed to see that David Cunliffe has given conditional approval to deep sea oil drilling, this is in contradiction of the views on the danger of climate change that he expressed in his famous Dolphin and Dole queue speech.

    This leads me to wonder where David Cunliffe stands on that other Green Party bottom line policy, of No New Coal Mines?

    Will David Cunliffe say anything about the huge proposed expansion of new coal mining on the Denniston Plateau?

    Will David Cunliffe say anything at all about climate change?

    I think that if the Labour leader takes up Greg Presland’s suggestion to make some vague promise to bring agriculture into the ETS, this will signal that Labour have given up on winning the next election, as this policy would only serve to alienate rural voters and will leave city dwellers unmoved. Whereas everyone wants to see deep sea oil drilling stopped.

    Also by not siding with the Greens over Deep Sea Oil and No New Coal mines David Cunliffe is leaving the door open for John Key to attack the Greens as extremists for promoting these policies.

    On tax cuts:

    As well as David Cunliffes support for deep sea oil drilling which will cost Labour votes.

    David Cunliffe says he will reverse Labour’s ‘promised’ tax cuts on the poor, But has said nothing about whether he will reverse National’s ‘actual’ tax cuts on the rich.

    I was also a bit disturbed by David Cunliffe’s announced removal of two of the Labour Party’s proposed tax cuts on the poor, ie the promise to cut the GST tax off fresh fruit and vegetables, and the promise to cut the tax for the first $5,000 dollars of income. David Cunliffe says this is necessary because of the $1.5billion these tax cuts will cost the public accounts.

    Though of course this policy too, will cost Laobur votes, I am prepared to keep an open mind on these reversals in Labour poverty mitigation, awaiting the release of Labour’s “comprehensive economic and social package” of which David Cunliffe said, “I’ll be outlining the first of these policies at my State of the Nation speech on Monday.”

    Hopefully we will be hearing that as well as reversing Labour’s two proposed tax cuts on the poor, David Cunliffe will be removing the whole raft of actual tax cuts on the rich, which will return many more $billions back into the public accounts, way more than will be saved in reversing Labour’s proposed, two, $1.5million tax cuts on the poor.

    On Superannuation:

    David Cunliffe has said nothing on reversing Labour’s manifesto policy on raising the age of retirement to 67.

    If David Cunliffe retains this policy, this is another election loser.
    Everyone knows the older section of the population vote in larger numbers than the younger section of the population. Not only this, but younger voters will be annoyed that they will be kept out of jobs by older people working on longer. This is a definite vote killer for Labour, especially in light of the fact that John Key has vowed not to raise the age of retirement. So if David Cunliffe does not reverse this policy, as well as costing Labour votes, he will also be handing Winston Peters the perfect excuse to go with National. Matt McCarten has forecast that NZFirst will bring in 6 MPs next year. On current polling this will guarantee a National led government.

    The ABC will be rubbing their hands in glee, when Labour loses they will be able to shift the blame to Cunliffe and continue on their hard Right neo-liberal course.

    As Chris Trotter likes to say, “They would rather keep control of the losing side than lose control of the winning side.”

    • karol 18.1

      Cunliffe has said he’ll retasin the 67 yrs super policy, with some manipulations for “social and gedner equity”

      So, no longer the Cunliffe cheerleader, Jenny?

      • the pigman 18.1.1

        Ehm, I don’t think Jenny ever was (you’re not confusing her with Jenny Michie?). IIRC she has always been a million miles left of (post-Rogernome) Labour.

        • karol 18.1.1.1

          Nope. No confusion. Jenny (not Michie) comment many times, very critical of the Greens, and claiming only Cunliffe among the current “left” MPs understood the importance of combating climate change. Major cheerleader for Cunliffe she was.

      • Jenny 18.1.2

        “Confident that the unstated threat of Labour MPs’ exposing the fragility of Cunliffe’s caucus authority will protect dissidents from the wrath of both the Leader’s and the party’s Head Office, the Old Guard are slowly but surely imprisoning Cunliffe in a right-wing policy framework designed to damage his left-wing credentials in the eyes of trade union affiliates, Labour’s rank-and-file and, eventually, the voters.”
        Chris Trotter

        http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/01/21/incomplete-victory-david-cunliffes-position-in-labours-caucus-looks-increasingly-shaky/

        I have always said David Cunliffe could be great. It is still his choice.

        He knows what needs to be done.

        He has the skills, he has the experience, he has the intelligence, he has the knowledge, despite not having the backing of the caucus, he has the backing of his party. Some have suggested he needs to take a pruning hook to his caucus, (possibly releasing a round of internecine warfare) I don’t necessarily think so, I think Cunliffe just has to go over the heads of the neo-liberal wormtongues and talk straight to the membership and the public.

        I have met the man and I was impressed and I have met a lot of politicians.

        But as I said, “I am prepared to keep an open mind”. So far most projections point to a Labour/Green electoral loss especially if the non-voters continue to stay away. Who knows? Maybe David Cunliffe will announce that reversing Labour’s promised tax cuts on the poor will be balanced out, by also reversing National’s (and Labour’s) tax cuts on the rich, to pay for a massive expansion in social services to, as David Cunliffe says, “more effectively to help Kiwi families when it is targeted better to deliver help where needed.”[sic]

        There is no reason at all, that all childhood poverty in particular, if it was properly “targeted”, could not be eliminated in this country within three years. Full free universal medical and dental and prescriptions for all dependent children could be a start. The extension of working for families extended to all families. The reversal of the benefit cuts.

        Maybe we could have a fully funded and staffed garden-to-table program in every school as outlined by David Shearer HERE providing luncheon and breakfast and teaching kitchen and garden skills.

        To alleviate the effects of poverty on families, we could have rent controls like they have in the US. A badly needed policy at a time when the State provision of housing has been run into the sand, and since high rents are used to set real estate value, high rents have lent to unaffordable home ownership. As well as lessening the burden of poverty on families, rent control would cool the overheated property market. Not only this but it would cost the government nothing.

        • greywarbler 18.1.2.1

          Jenny was up late writing wisdom, or before the birds getting the worms, in this summary of David Cunliffe’s route to making the Beehive a place of happy production of honey as well as milk, and take its persona away of being the Castle on the Hill, remote and full of unpleasant secrets and people.
          Cunliffe just has to go over the heads of the neo-liberal wormtongues and talk straight to the membership and the public.

          • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 18.1.2.1.1

            Cunliffe just has to go over the heads of the neo-liberal wormtongues and talk straight to the membership and the public.

            The thing is, the membership and the public want different messages. The membership need to be told “neoliberal agenda, thousand years of darkness, dogs and cats living together, but we avoid that if we all work together”. The public will laugh if they hear that.

            The public need to be told “yes things are great, yes the economy’s doing well and unemployment’s down and confidence is up… but Labour can do it even better”. The membership will laugh if they hear that. Because to not laugh is to agree that National is doing a fantastic job of running the country.

            Then Cunliffe gets slammed for “talking out both sides of his mouth”.

            • Crunchtime 18.1.2.1.1.1

              Disagree. Unemployment is still somewhat high, the poverty gap has never been wider, the underclass of poor (not to mention novoting) public wants to hear that Labour will make things better for everyone, wants to hear how Labour will make the country a “fairer” place to live. That’s also what the membership want to hear, I am sure.

    • Puckish Rogue 18.2

      “Whereas everyone wants to see deep sea oil drilling stopped.”

      – Well no, a large proportion of people want to see drilling and mining encouraged

  19. adam 19

    I think I said in the other blog, ( http://thestandard.org.nz/what-should-david-cunliffes-say-in-his-state-of-the-nation-speech/ ) Labour has no spine. I’m feeling that – Hooton (or should we really be calling him – Putin) and co – Have won the “freak out the social democrats debate”.

  20. Ad 20

    Pretty amazing to hear people say this morning that David Cunliffe “has no spine” or roughly ‘I don’t trust him’.

    For people like Chris Trotter who are worried about the ‘old guard’, it’s worth reminding that Labour’s caucus numbers are at their lowest in many generations. Unless a whole bunch more come in in the next election, that’s how it will remain for a bit as well. Most of caucus do know that Labour members have far greater power over them than previously.

    Also it’s worth remembering that he’s not the leader of the Green Party. Mr Russell is, and he can do his own speech whenever he likes for people to project their own idealism onto. David Cunliffe is the leader of the Labour Party.

    Why not turn up on Monday and see what he stands for? It’s going to be one of Those Events. Then comment afterwards.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 20.1

      Huh? DC encourages our commentary and you respond by telling us to shut up? That’ll fly. No, really. Why don’t you believe me?

      • Ad 20.1.1

        Come along and check it out.
        Compare to Keys text today.
        See which version of New Zealand you prefer.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 20.1.1.1

          Um, no contest for me. I’ll watch the speech with interest, but I think Labour/Green will be the worst possible coalition apart from all the other ones.

          • Crunchtime 20.1.1.1.1

            “Um, no contest for me. I’ll watch the speech with interest, but I think Labour/Green will be the worst possible coalition apart from all the other ones.”

            Excellent summary sir, thoroughly agree.

            • phillip ure 20.1.1.1.1.1

              @ oak..

              ..aye..!..

              ..(tho’ i wd add a strong mana presence..to stiffen both labour and green spines..)

              ..forget peters now..key has reached out and touched him..

              ..and thus permanently tainted any nz first vote..

              ..he can’t be trusted..

              ..yr vote wd not be ‘safe’..

              ..you cd vote for economic-nationalist peters..

              ..and end up with supporting tory-toads peters..

              ..and that wouldn’t do..

              ..phillip ure..

    • karol 20.2

      Russel is also not THE leader if the Greens – he’s co-leader. The other co-leader is much stronger on combatting poverty and for a more egalitarian society.

  21. natwest 21

    I just hope for Messiah’s sake that he crunches his numbers before Monday’s “lolly” speach to the nation.

    Because if he hasn’t John Key will take him apart – limb by limb!

    Somehow, given past experience – I doubt very much that he will have, as most of his policy releases have been of the cuff and on the hoof.

    Looking forward to the comedy show come Monday.

    • framu 21.1

      strangely enough, the same isnt demanded from “back of a napkin” key is it

    • greywarbler 21.2

      natwest
      Trouble is with politics about your country, are you a NZ? whether it is funny, ridiculous, unbelievable, it is always serious. The more funny it is, the more serious you should be. So look and listen you might find some laughs but you can run from the serious stuff, but you can’t hide.

  22. Ron 22

    I hope that someone will be at The Kelston School to redirect any people that have not got the change of venue. After spending some time this week advising members of where the speech is being given the last minute change could cause a lot of confusion on Monday.
    Here’s hoping that we fill new venue to overflowing.

    • LynWiper 22.1

      I’ve just had a phone call to ensure I know of the change. I had registered I was going. Someone is onto it! :-)

  23. Yey, David Cunliffe listened to us!

    He announced that fracking, asset sales and low tax for the rich would be off the table and that low and middle class incomes would get reprieve with the exemption of fruit and veggies of GST and the first $ 5000 of income free (something which was the norm in for example Holland) and to top it up he proposes to Nationalize the already looted assets and to start investigations into banking products such as the Derivatives sold to farmers in New Zealand in order to make sure that nobody will be the victim of less than honorable intentions of the international banking elite.

    Ummm…. Well I guess I have my answer about the two heads of the same dragon!

  24. Papa Tuanuku 24

    Is Norway riddled with active earthquake faults like we are?

    All I see is permits being given in locations that are also having a heap of eathquakes (off Whakaari in the BoP), and around Seddon. What sort of nutcase society sees any logic in this? THis makes me want a Green – led coalition, if we dream it, we can make it happen.

  25. Ad 25

    Isn’t it time we got the leader, any leader, of the Green Party to front up on this site?
    Great time for it.

  26. floyd 26

    Can the permits already granted by the national *know nots* be rescinded when Labour gets into power? Or do they have to be honoured anyway? Curious to know.

    • That depends whom you ask. The international holders of the assets will tell you the earth will open and you will go to hell if you Nationalize. People and countries on the receiving end of corporate lawsuits will tell you to go tell those international holders of these asset to go to hell themselves

  27. Rhinocrates 27

    The best thing about this is that David Cunliffe, contra Mumblefuck and Iagreewithmatthew Williams, is that he knows the importance of new media instead of pretending that computers are a fad.

    • Chooky 27.1

      Rhino….imo …. you got rid of Mumblefuck…you wouldnt let up!…and the poor bastard was beached, breached ,blinded, blindsided and blitheringly mumblefucked by the brilliance of your slashing swordsmanship verbosity….

      …just as well imo

      …next target? (Possum is in hiding) ….so how about Steven Joyce?… or John Key?

      • Chooky 27.1.1

        actually that is a silly comment…Mumblefuck got rid of himself by mumblefucking….but where is Possum?….us Chooks want some more fun

  28. As an oldie on just the pension I manage quite well ,however a better coverage of the “gold card ‘ would be welcome. But it is the young who are having a raw deal.Unemployment, bad eating habits and the working poor. These issues need seeing too.So meals in schools including fresh fruit and milk. School uniforms to be standardized each school identified by then badge ,This would enable uniforms to be mass produced and sold at cost price.
    Firms subsidized to take apprentices plus trade training for unemployed but with a livable benefit. All employees to be encouraged to join their union . Firms that have a bad work accident record will be required to enforce compulsory unionism.
    Let us remember that under this Act/National government we have a new class of people “The working poor. ” I hope you will remind the public of this David , Unable to get to the meeting but best wishes and give those bloody Tories hell.

  29. greywarbler 29

    I thought that the venue had been changed from Kelston school? Am I right? Is the address at the top in the post, the right one?

  30. Clemgeopin 30

    I was HIGHLY impressed with the last two minutes of Cunliffe’s talk with the journalists today. Towards the end I felt a glimpse of the real Mr Cunliffe, PM and leader, when he spoke with real passion and conviction. Watch this link.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1401/S00054/cunliffe-underwhelmed-by-keys-state-of-the-nation-speech.htm

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 30.1

      That would be a link to the website of the organisation that is helping set up Kim Dotcom’s Internet Party, yeah?

      • Clemgeopin 30.1.1

        What is that to do with the point of my post? Did you watch the last two minutes?

      • Colonial Viper 30.1.2

        It’s a small country with not many people. Occasionally, conflicts of interest arise and are dealt with.

      • Crunchtime 30.1.3

        You are sadly misinformed.

        • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 30.1.3.1

          You are sadly misinformed.

          domain_name: internetparty.co.nz
          query_status: 200 Active
          domain_dateregistered: 2013-12-18T08:24:04+13:00
          registrant_contact_name: Scoop Media Limited

  31. newsense 31

    ” I don’t think this policy will be enough for a coalition between National and Labour” lolz

  32. fear all 32

    Key wants us to be slaves to the protectionist crap that suits American and European corporate interests and an open door to any another outfit that has more money to pay their way into controlling the resources of this country and eventually replacing the responsibilities we have in the pacific by trading our democracy to the control of the these aforesaid groups

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    Imperator Fish | 22-10
  • The 500 hats of Bartholomew Cubbins – the John Key edition
    It’s standard practice for Ministers and Prime Ministers to wear different “hats” in the course of their work. Work done as a Minister can obviously be separate and distinct from an MP’s ordinary functions on behalf of the constituents in their electorates....
    Occasionally erudite | 22-10
  • The many hats of John Key
    ...
    On the Left | 22-10
  • Want lower rates? Cut back on urban sprawl
    Suburban sprawl is a radical, government-led re-engineering of society, one that artificially inverted millennia of accumulated wisdom and practice in building human habitats. Charles Marohn In the recent article The Conservative Case Against the Suburbs Charles Marohn (@StrongTowns) takes on the awkward relationship...
    Transport Blog | 22-10
  • Ebola Fear outstrips risk
    It's not just that Ebola sounds like a modern day black plague and probably originated from blood sucking bats living in dark caves - reason enough for people here in the United States to react like there's a Zombie-Vampire apocalypse...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • National lets Shell drill illegally
    Back in 2012, National passed the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Act. At the time, they made a lot of noise about how this was the first legislation to properly protect the EEZ, and that it would...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • The crime is not being rich, the crime is we don’t tax all the income tha...
    In our last blog we looked at whether the claims of ‘rock star’ economist Thomas Piketty held any water or not. Short answer is that some did, some didn’t. In this blog we turn to what we should do about...
    Gareth’s World | 22-10
  • Justice for Nisour Square
    On September 16, 2007, Blackwater mercenaries ran amok in Nisour Square, Baghdad, indiscriminately firing at civilians. 17 people were killed and 20 injured. Today, a US jury has convicted them of that crime:Three security guards working for the private US...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • The gentle art of believing nothing
    I remember, quite a few years ago now, Jenny Shipley addressing a room and asking the question, “What is the purpose of the National Party?” The answer was: To defeat the Labour Party. National was there to be the party...
    Occasionally erudite | 22-10
  • Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 – what really happened?
    Three months after the loss of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 over Ukraine the world is no wiser about what, and who, caused this crash. Well, we have the preliminary report but this only confirmed the bleeding obvious (“the aircraft was penetrated by a...
    Open Parachute | 22-10
  • It’s about history… & votes & elephants
    I think I'll start at the end. Andrew ended his recent post like this:...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • More than 20 jobs saved at Auckland faculty of education
    The union and TEU members at the University of Auckland have managed to reduce proposed compulsory job cuts at the faculty of education from 35 down to just two. Local TEU organiser Enzo Giordani said feisty staff with a staunch...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Gordon Campbell on the tokenism of New Zealand‘s role against Islamic Sta...
    Was John Key born lucky or what? Political performance tends to be judged on three things – the unemployment rate, the petrol price at the pump, and the market value of your house. This year, Key was lucky enough to...
    Gordon Campbell | 22-10
  • MIT chaos following job cut announcement
    Chaos reigns at MIT following last week’s announcement that the polytechnic will cut 68 full time equivalent jobs, according to local TEU organiser Chan Dixon. Over a thousand people have signed a petition opposing job cuts at the polytechnic. Staff are...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Auckland staff call for Living Wage
    The Living Wage Network held a rally and barbecue this week calling on the University of Auckland to become first New Zealand’s Living Wage university, by paying all staff, both directly employed and contracted staff, a living wage of $18.80...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Otago debates one off lump sum
    The University of Otago has not offered its staff a pay rise on their rates at collective agreement negotiations, opting instead to offer a one-off lump sum of $1000, which will not go ‘on the rates’. TEU members at the...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Speaker: David Fisher: The OIA arms race
    Good afternoon everyone. I am David Fisher, a reporter with the New Zealand Herald. I have worked as a journalist for 25 years, mainly in New Zealand but across a number of other countries.I think there's some value before I...
    Public Address | 22-10
  • Employment law first act of new government
    As the prime minister promised, his government has rushed to push through its Employment Relations Amendment Bill as one of its very first actions this week. The bill, which union members and workers have actively opposed for the last year,...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • 7 inspiring stories of communities taking action for climate
    Stories of communities taking action for the climate and refusing to accept the plans of polluting fossil fuel companies are happening more and more. Here are just a few inspiring climate acts of courage taken by doctors, villagers, students, farmers,...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-10
  • Blowin’ in the wind
    Wind power has a pivotal role to play in the world's energy supply over the next few years. By providing huge amounts of clean, affordable power, it can buy us time in the fight against global warming while revolutions in...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-10
  • Wanted: more fertiliser and horse manure
    Equality enriches the soil, just like manure, but a lot less stinky (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think about why they’re On The Left, and what the next three years holds for the left, the...
    On the Left | 22-10
  • PM gets it right about Auckland, mostly
    Prime Minister John Key is dead right when he said: First home buyers in Auckland might have to consider an apartment in order to get onto the property ladder, Prime Minister John Key says. After all, the locational efficiencies of...
    Transport Blog | 22-10
  • John Key’s Multiple Identities
    Question to the Prime MinisterRussel Norman: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he txted him?Prime Minister: None in my capacity as Prime Minister.John Key...
    Local Bodies | 22-10
  • Where is the Middle?
    When Labour decides who will be the next leader, it is of interest to all of us involved in politics. After all the person chosen could be New Zealand's next Prime Minister. So the debate on the nature of the...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • Labour Needs A Civil Union With The Greens
    Much has been written about where Labour needs to go from here. One issue which doesn’t seem to have generated much interest is what do they do with the Greens?...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Lau...
    The People's Flag Is ... Mint Green? Grant Robertson and Jacinda Ardern (whom Twitter immediately dubbed Gracinda) pose in Mint Green for one of the glossy women's magazines. In a non-revolutionary era, superficial is about as deep as it gets. BIKERS?...
    Bowalley Road | 22-10
  • Auckland’s disturbing panopticon
    Earlier in the month, we learned that Auckland was planning to install a creepy panopticon, complete with ANPR and facial recognition, for vague and undefinied purposes. This produced a flurry of OIA requests via FYI, and one of them (for...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • How to Sell a House: Free Advice from a couple of experts. (Self-Described!...
      In the 32 years that Judy and I have been together we have bought and sold quite a few houses. Six years is the longest we  lived in any one of those houses.  Our friends regard us as gypsies. The...
    Brian Edwards | 22-10
  • Judith Collins’ two-tier OIA service
    Back in August, we learned that sewerblogger Cameron Slater was receiving extraordinary OIA service from then-Minister of Justice Judith Collins, in one case receiving a response to a request within 37 minutes. But it wasn't just extraordinary for its speed;...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • Fluoridation – a racist conspiracy?
    Political activists campaigning on health issues often resort to scaremongering. This can be dangerous – especially when their stories have no real basis but rely on selective and distorted information. Paul Connett’s Fluoride Action Network (FAN) often resorts to this sort of scaremongering. Now...
    Open Parachute | 22-10
  • What have people in Africa been doing since the Ebola outbreak started?
    by Andy Warren In a word – dying.  But not from Ebola. According to WHO data it looks like this: However, fear and anxiety are the sexiest ingredients of any story today – rather than boring facts. Ebola fits perfectly...
    Redline | 22-10
  • What have people in Africa been doing since the Ebola outbreak started?
    by Andy Warren In a word – dying.  But not from Ebola. According to WHO data it looks like this: However, fear and anxiety are the sexiest ingredients of any story today – rather than boring facts. Ebola fits perfectly...
    Redline | 22-10
  • Unbelieveable
    This week we've seen the Prime Minister desperately trying to cover up his war plans by pretending that Obama's war-planning meeting was just a "regular" meeting of defence partners which we just happened to be attending. Over on Kiwipolitico Pablo...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • Are the police using ANPR to target the disabled?
    The media this morning is full of stories of the paralysed man caught driving using a walking stick to reach the pedals. Its good that he's off the road, but there's one point in the story which raises questions:The driver...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • Like a cult…
    When a party loses badly, the public expects a bit of sorrowful wailing and beating of breasts. To say “This is what we did wrong, and this is how we’ll fix it” is an important part of restoring trust with...
    Occasionally erudite | 21-10
  • How low can you go? Mining the depths
    The company says there will be economic benefits, which the EEZ Act says the EPA must consider, but even these benefits are in doubt. The royalties while not set will be tiny, the profits will flow offshore, and whatever phosphate...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Government loses the affordable housing race
    Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks he can deliver affordable housing to Cantabrians on his current figures, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Minister’s announcement that the Government will build 237 new homes, most of which will...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Labour’s thoughts with Canadians
    Labour has offered its sympathies to the family and friends of the Canadian soldier who died in what appears to be a premeditated and unprovoked attack while standing at guard at the Ottawa National War Memorial. “Our thoughts are also...
    Labour | 23-10
  • What next for TVNZ? Outsourcing the news?
    Television New Zealand’s decision to outsource Māori and Pacific programming is a real blow to the notion that our state broadcaster is a public broadcaster, says Labour. “CEO Kevin Kenrick has said today that TVNZ has ‘a very long and...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Green Party expresses sympathy for Canadian shooting victims
    The Green Party expressed its solidarity with Canadians and the Canadian Parliament today, offering its sympathy for family and friends of the soldier killed in the attack. "Our thoughts are with all those caught up in the shooting in Canada...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Prime Minister must honour his promise
    It’s time for John Key to honour his promise to the Pike River families, says Labour MP Damien O’Connor.  “International mine experts have confirmed the view of WorkSafe New Zealand and many miners on the West Coast that it is...
    Labour | 22-10
  • EPA finds Shell Oil illegally drilled two wells
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded that Shell Todd Oil Services (STOS) broke the law by drilling two wells without a marine consent off the coast of Taranaki, the Green Party said today. The EPA conducted an inspection of...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    News that Aucklanders overtook Wellingtonians as the biggest train users is further evidence the Government needs to start work on the Auckland City Rail Link now, the Green Party said today.Auckland Transport said today that in the year to September,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Tea breaks gone by lunch time
    Labour is calling for an eleventh hour reprieve to employment law changes which could see thousands of Kiwi workers not covered by collective agreements lose their smoko breaks, its spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“How cynical that on the...
    Labour | 21-10
  • Metiria Turei to lead fight on feeding hungry children
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira.Mrs Turei, who leads the Green Party's work on child poverty, will pick up Mr...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Otago dairy farms fail basics
    I’m really privileged to take on the responsibility of the water portfolio. Eugenie Sage has done excellent work in this area in the last term of parliament and provided a great platform for further work. Last Parliament my bill to...
    Greens | 21-10
  • A mighty totara has fallen across the Tasman
    The New Zealand Labour Party expresses deep sadness at the death of former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, aged 98. “Today a great totara has fallen across the Tasman,” Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says....
    Labour | 21-10
  • Note to National: Must deliver on child poverty
    John Key and his Government will be held to its promise to make child poverty a priority, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “In its priority-setting speech today the Government stated child poverty would be a major focus for...
    Labour | 21-10
  • New Analysis show Government cut tertiary education funding
    New analysis done by the Green Party today shows the Government has made cuts to funding of tertiary education since 2008.Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that between 2009 and 2015 Government funding to Tertiary Institutions dropped by 4...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Students doing it tough as fees rise again
    The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Steven Joyce is shutting a generation...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Key misled New Zealand on Iraq deployment
      John Key was misleading New Zealanders prior to the election when he ruled out New Zealand special forces being deployed to Iraq, says Labour Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff.  “Post-election he has cynically disregarded that by saying that deployment of...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Church congratulated on child poverty stand
    The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.   “I think...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review.  He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban (see further biographical details here). The Review Team...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
  • RECOUNT JUST ONE STEP TO RESTORING CREDIBILITY
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA SEEKS TAI TOKERAU RECOUNT
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA to fight mass privatisation of state housing
    Announcements over the past 12 hours from the Minister responsible for Housing New Zealand, Bill English, and Minister for Social Housing, Paula Bennett, make clear the government’s intention for the mass privatisation of state housing. This comes during the middle...
    Mana | 07-10
  • Journalists have right to protect sources
    Legal authorities must respect the right of journalist Nicky Hager to protect the source of his material for his Dirty Politics book under Section 68 of the Evidence Act, Acting Labour Leader David Parker says. “It is crucial in an...
    Labour | 06-10
  • It shouldn’t take the Army to house the homeless
    National’s move to speed up its state house sell-off shows it is bankrupt of new ideas, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “National has been in office for six years, yet the housing crisis has got worse every month and...
    Labour | 06-10
  • Government must lift social housing supply, not shuffle the deck chairs
    National's decision to shift the state provision of housing to third parties is a smokescreen for the Government decreasing the provision of affordable housing, the Green Party said today."What National should be doing is increasing the supply of both social...
    Greens | 06-10
  • Election 2014 – the final count
    While we have to wait for the final booth level counts we can now see how well we did in the specials and look at electorate level data. First off special votes (and disallowed/recounted votes etc). There was a change...
    Greens | 06-10
  • We need more houses, not Ministers
    The Government’s decision to have three housing Ministers will create a dog’s breakfast of the portfolio and doesn’t bode well for fixing the country’s housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New Zealanders need more houses, not more Ministers....
    Labour | 05-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Discordant Chimes of Freedom: Why Labour has yet to be forgiven.
    WHY DOES THE ELECTORATE routinely punish Labour and the Greens for their alleged “political correctness” but not National? It just doesn’t seem fair. Consider, for example, the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 – the so-called “anti-smacking legislation” –...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Hosking or Henry – Which right wing crypto fascist clown do you want to w...
    So Mediaworks are finally going to make some actual money from their eye watering contract with Paul Henry by launching a new multi-platform Breakfast show over TV, Radio and internet. This is great news for Campbell Live who have dodged...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Families need more money to reduce child poverty
    Prime Minister John Key is mistaken to rule out extending the In Work Tax Credit to all poor children (The Nation 11th Oct) and Child Poverty Action Group challenges government advisors to come up with a more cost effective way...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Don’t shit on my dream
    Once were dreamers. A large man, walks down the road and, even from 200 yards there’s light showing between his big arms and bigger body. It’s as if he’s put tennis balls under his arms. Two parking wardens walk out...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Labour and ‘special interests’
    The media narrative of Labour is that it is unpopular because it’s controlled by ‘special interests’. This ‘special interests’ garbage is code for gays, Maoris, wimin and unionists. We should show that argument the contempt it deserves. The next Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Ru...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Tahi) . National’s housing development project: ‘Gateway’ to confusion . Perhaps nothing better illustrates National’s lack of a coherent housing programme than the ‘circus’ that is...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Here’s what WINZ are patronisingly saying to people on welfare when they ...
    Yesterday, a case manager from WINZ called to tell me that I needed to “imagine what I would do if I did not have welfare”. I replied “Well, I guess if I couldn’t live at home, I would be homeless.”...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • David Shearer’s ‘no feminist chicks’ mentality highlights all that is...
    Mr Nasty pays a visit Shearer’s extraordinary outburst last night on NZs favourite redneck TV, The Paul Henry Show, is a reminder of all that is wrong within the Labour Caucus right now… He said the current calls for a female or...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0
    Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – A Tale Of Two Cities
    Sunday was surreal. I went for a drive and ended up in a different country. It wasn’t intentional but those days of too many literally intertextual references seldom are. There is no doubt that the Sunday drive this week had...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Unanimously Call for Commissioner to Arm Police Full Time
    In the wake of a series of recent armed offender incidents, delegates to the Police Association Annual Conference today called unanimously on the Commissioner to arm Police full time....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Bank gets behind NZ wildlife icon with sizable donation
    It will be easier than ever this summer for holiday-markers to dip into their pockets to support the yellow-eyed penguin....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • WorkSafe report raises concerns about asbestos
    The union representing construction workers in the Canterbury rebuild is surprised at WorkSafe’s conclusion that no action needs to be taken against EQC and Fletcher EQR over asbestos exposure in Canterbury homes. “This report was an opportunity...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Union accuses SkyCity CEO of misleading public
    Unite Union has accused SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison of misleading the public over the cut in hours for a staff member who raised the issue at the company's AGM....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Last Hurrah on the Taxpayer
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Hone Harawira spent up $54,000 on the taxpayer in his last three months as an MP, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “It is absolutely disgraceful that an MP managed to rack...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Press statement in relation to search of Nicky Hager’s home
    On 2 October 2014, Nicky Hager's home in Wellington was searched by police. Mr Hager asserted that documents kept at his house were protected by privilege, including because they contained information that might identify confidential sources....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • The Sam Simon arrives into Auckland for new campaign
    This morning Sea Shepherd ship, the Sam Simon, arrived into Auckland harbour after its journey from Melbourne. The ship and its 25 crew from around the globe have come to New Zealand to source supplies and prepare for the upcoming...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Low inflation – time for meaningful wage increases
    With inflation low, now is a good time for workers to negotiate for pay increases that outstrip price rises and deliver real increases in wages and salaries. “For too many people, real pay increases have been missing for several years...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Auckland Rates Rises Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland ratepayers will face an average of a 29 percent rates increase, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “These rate rises show that Len Brown's spending is out of control.”...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Protest at New Plymouth Oil and Gas Expo
    About 30 protesters from Climate Justice Taranaki, Frack-free Kapiti, Te Uru Pounamu Action Group, Oil Free Wellington, Frack-free Manawatu and the east coast protested yesterday outside New Plymouth's biennial Oil and Gas Expo at the TSB Stadium....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • FMA warns consumers about cold-calling investment offers
    The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is warning New Zealand consumers and investors to be wary of cold-calls asking them to buy shares or put their money into offshore firms....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Comprehensive plan needed to end child poverty
    Child Poverty Action Group says it is vital the newly re-elected National government takes a planned and comprehensive approach to reducing child poverty in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Metiria Gets Feed the Kids
    Yesterday the Speaker of the House advised that he had accepted my request to transfer my Feed the Kids (Education (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Amendment) Bill to Metiria Turei of the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • DIA undercover investigation leads to jailing
    An undercover Internal Affairs investigation has led to a Hastings man being jailed for three and half years....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • RainbowYOUTH: 25 Years, 25 More
    In 1989, a group of young people in Auckland got together to form a support group for LGBTIQ youth. They called it Auckland Lesbian And Gay Youth (ALGY). After 25 years, several location changes, a name change, a brand reboot...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Outdated Oath shows need for Kiwi Head of State
    MPs are sworn in today and New Zealand Republic has written to MPs asking them to talk about why 121 New Zealanders elected by the people of New Zealand and standing in the New Zealand Parliament swear allegiance to another...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Council shouldn’t revenue grab from windfall valuations
    Auckland Council should state clearly they will not try and capture revenue as a result of the latest valuations and needs reminding that the City’s skyrocketing property values doesn’t change the level or cost of Council’s services, says...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • EPMU endorses Andrew Little for Labour leadership
    The National Executive of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union unanimously endorsed Andrew Little for the role of Labour leader, at a meeting held yesterday. “I have been speaking to our workplace delegates at forums across the country over...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • World Food Day promotes Agroecology not GE technology
    The UN has stated that agroecology is a major solution to feeding the world and caring for the earth....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Labour Names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Contenders for Labour leadership debate for first time
    The contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party debated for the first time on TV One’s Q+A programme today....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • UN Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme
    New Zealand's United Nations Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully
    Murray McCully says New Zealanders can expect a 5-10 year engagement against Islamic State if we join military action in Iraq and the government will take that “very carefully into account”...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
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