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Did we just hear Steven Joyce sh*t all over his colleagues?!?!

Written By: - Date published: 3:48 pm, February 1st, 2013 - 93 comments
Categories: accountability, bill english, Hekia parata, Steven Joyce - Tags: , , ,

Reprinted with permission from Frankly Speaking.


Did we just hear Steven Joyce sh*t all over his colleagues?!?!

Government sticking with Novopay - for now

Full story

.

Steven Joyce,

Steven Joyce revealed that Education Minister Hekia Parata, Finance Minister Bill English and former education minister Craig Foss approved the use of Novopay despite being told that it had bugs.”

See: IBID

In colloquial terms, that is what is known as ‘dropping someone in it’ – “it” being brown, smelly, and heading for waste-treament ponds.

Is there a civil war going on within National, comprising two factions with one led by technocrat Steven Joyce and the other by neo-liberal Bill English?

Or is there something even more disquieting going on within National’s ranks.

Joyce added,

There was definitely knowledge there were bugs at the outset of going live. But the advice of all involved was that the thing should proceed. I doubt they’d give the same advice today.

Noticeably, when queried by media, all three Ministers had similar responses – obviously coached by the same tax-payer funded Party spin-doctors and media-minders,

.

Mr Fix-It has Novopay plan

See: Mr Fix-It has Novopay plan

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Hekia Parata

I think hindsight’s a wonderful thing....

Bill English

In hindsight....

And the tongue-tied Craig Foss,

Well in hindsight… is a benefit of hindsight...

See: IBID

You can always tell when a politician has been coached; they use the same words and phrases over and over again. Spin doctors/media-minders develop a mantra, and their clients are expected to learn and parrot it, by rote. It takes a skilful journalist/interviewer to peel away the carefully-crafted coaching and get to the truth.

This indicates that Parata, English, and Foss had been pre-warned of Joyce’s press conference and admission of the three Minister’s actions.

So is this some sort of carefully managed internecine warfare?

Or a very subtle, clever strategy to neutralise possible Opposition disclosures in Parliament?

Joyce’s statements that there will be on-going problems with Novopay could be seen as an attempt to minimise future media reports on Novopay errors.After all, if National admits that there will be ongoing problems – does that make it news when it happens?

Whichever is the case, this is Steven Joyce at his most cunning, and the Opposition will need to be on their toes. As will the media, if they are not to be out-manouvered by National’s “Mr Fix It”.

“Mr Fix It” does not apply to sorting out computerised pay systems. “Mr Fix It” fixes political messes.

This certainly qualifies as the Mother of all Messes.

Addendum

As is common with National, Joyce attempted to shift blame onto advisors/bureacrats/Uncle Tom Cobbly, when he stated,

There was definitely knowledge there were bugs at the outset of going live. But the advice of all involved was that the thing should proceed…

My bet is that we will never, ever see this “advice”.

93 comments on “Did we just hear Steven Joyce sh*t all over his colleagues?!?!”

  1. McFlock 1

    yeah, I double-looked at that, too.

    It certainly doesn’t hurt the theory of a “joyce for leader” move being prepped,

  2. Andre 2

    100 million dollars project . Time for John Key wheel out the guillotine. Maybe more than one?

  3. BM 3

    None of these ministers are IT software experts.
    Their decision to go ahead with the launch of Nova pay would have been strictly on the advice of talent 2 and the MOE.
    If talent 2 and the MOE said there’s a few bugs” but it shouldn’t be an issue, these ministers hardly have the knowledge it question the advice given to them.

    Terrible attempt at trying to deflect the blame from labour and the MOE onto national.

    • So Labour is to blame?

      Did Helen Clark by mind control force the three to sign the project off even though it was apparent it was not working properly. A labour minister would have felt compassion for the teachers and told Talent to get it right. It is obvious the tories did not give a dam.

      Terrible attempt at trying to deflect the blame from National onto anyone else.

      • QoT 3.1.1

        Did Helen Clark by mind control force the three to sign the project off even though it was apparent it was not working properly

        Jesus, micky, we don’t talk about H1′s paranormal abilities on unsecured channels!

      • dumrse 3.1.2

        For fucks sake, Liebor entered into a contract knowing T2 would require reprogramming to cater for excessive number of salary groups and grades.

    • McFlock 3.2

      terrible attempt at trying to defend incompetent ministers.

      If they didn’t understand what they were signing, why did they have the job?

      • BM 3.2.1

        You expect ministers to be experts in pay roll software?

        • Andre 3.2.1.1

          You would expect them to read the info given to them, now released. To see as the trial processed it was making a bigger mess every cycle is was run .Even you might think thats not good?

        • mickysavage 3.2.1.2

          I expect ministers to be functionally more sophisticated than amoeba, especially given their salaries.

        • McFlock 3.2.1.3

          I would expect them to read “seven of the eight criteria associated with Confidence Point Two have been met, or are close to being met.”and ask “so how many actually work? We’re not going to go live until all criteria have been met, are we?

          And maybe say “so when we say ’10 level two software defects”, what actually are those? That sounds like it might be serious. Could we, oh, maybe resolve ALL defects before proceeding?”.

          It’s not an IT issue. It’s a minister’s job to know the difference between “everything works, recommend we proceed” and “well, everything works or at least almost works, I’m sure it’ll be fixed by the golive date, recommend we proceed”.

          • mickysavage 3.2.1.3.1

            Agreed McFlock. Coincidentally I had a squiz at the report and was drawn to that exact phrase and the fact that 10 level two bugs were in existence, see 6.1. It makes you wonder if the Ministers actually read the report and if so what they thought when they read those paragraphs.

            • One Tāne Huna 3.2.1.3.1.1

              “thought”?

              You’re being too bloody charitable by half. If wingnuts could “think” they wouldn’t espouse so many faith-based policies.

              Edit: PS: @Andre: *lose *too.

        • bad12 3.2.1.4

          NO, we expect Ministers to take full responsibility for the decisions they make, those 3 Minister English,Parata, and Foss all knew there were bugs in the system yet still allowed the system to go live,

          Did the 3 ministers concerned order the bugs be identified and fixed befor they allowed a faulty system to be used, NO, the 3 of them should resign…

        • mike 3.2.1.5

          See mickeysavage at 6.1 below. For the six-figure salaries that they get I expect them to be more then unquestioning “looks good to me” rubber stampers of reports that contain dodgy dogshit like that.

        • shaz 3.2.1.6

          I was looking for the irony tag on your earlier comment but by golly you are in earnest.

    • tc 3.3

      ‘None of these ministers are IT software experts’ nor finance, education, etc for that matter.

      Irrelevant, you take the pay and the role then your taking the responsibility.

      MOE/Novopay aren’t independant so a readiness assessment should be sighted done by someone with nothing to lose if it’s not ready. They seek these in large enterprises before a major rollout, that soon flushes the shite out.

      To say go based on the vendor/ministry shows how incompetant these clowns are at what the real world is all about.

      Payroll is a mission critical application that has to be 100% , 100% of the time. Unless you don’t care about your teachers and the extra stress this places on them.

      I don’t know of any exec that would allow a payroll system with bugs going live, especially with a good contract around what you get for the $$$$.

      Watch rat cunning Joyce get maximum value out of this.

    • Terrible attempt at trying to deflect the blame from labour and the MOE onto national.

      Question for future reference, BM: Is there a Use-By date for the “Blame Labour” option, after which National and it’s supporters will,

      (a) Find another scapegoat

      (b) Actually take responsibility for your own actions?

      You know – the same responsibility you demand from everyone else.

      Just asking.

      Because, y’know, if you keep pointing the finger at Labour now and forever, maybe National should call an early election. If Labour has to take responsibilty, they should have the opportunity to set things right.

      Again, just saying.

      • georgecom 3.4.1

        Fair go Frank. Once again we have you requiring National MPs to be responsible for their actions. That was NEVER part of the deal so why raise such unrealistic expectations how.

        Gees, next you’ll be saying that John Banks should resign.

        And, before you raise it as a defence, we were never supposed to take seriously comments about requiring ‘higher standards of his ministers’.

  4. Colonial Weka 4

    “Did we just hear Steven Joyce sh*t all over his colleagues?!?!”

    I guess it’s kind of inevitable when you live on a planet with no toilets.

    • Andre 4.1

      Mr Foss for scapegoat then. Hekia must stay and be helped by labour, as she will destroy her own party.

      • David H 4.1.1

        Or Key kept Parata around, just for this very public blame game and a very public execution.

  5. mike 5

    Ah hindsight. Yes, um, if we’d known that this would be such a disaster then we wouldn’t have done it now would we? So STFU.

    • Thanks Handle.

      I just did something that BM I am sure has not done. I looked at the go live report.

      The go live decision was on June 5. At that date there were 147 identifed bugs, 10 of them significant and the report says “seven of the eight criteria associated with Confidence Point Two have been met, or are close to being met”. Obviously one criteria was not met and was not even close to being met.

      If I was the Minister I would have sent it back and told them to get the bugs sorted and all the criteria met.

      The report is at http://www.minedu.govt.nz/~/media/MinEdu/Files/TheMinistry/NovopayProject/TestingNovopay/GoLive/EdReportFinalRecommendationV1.pdf

      • McFlock 6.1.1

        snap

      • mike 6.1.2

        “seven of the eight criteria associated with Confidence Point Two have been met, or are close to being met”

        Got to love the Welly-wording there.

        Novopay: Ah yes minister, um, 7/8 of the work is done. When I say ‘done’ what I mean is that it might be finished, or an unstated amount of it might be an unstated amount of distance away from being finished.

        Minister: Very impressive.

        • mickysavage 6.1.2.1

          Even worse than that Mike. One possibility is that only one of the criteria was met, 6 of them close to have being met and one of them definitely was not even close to have been met.

          • mike 6.1.2.1.1

            “seven of the eight criteria associated with Confidence Point Two have been met, or are close to being met”

            As written this statement does not categorically claim that ANY of the criteria have been met.

            If I know 7 people who each have $900,000 and I say “These 7 people are millionaires, or close to being millionaires,” I’m not wrong.

    • Hmmm, maybe someone ion the Ninth Floor read my blogpost? *laffs*

  6. fenderviper 7

    Mr Fix It almost looked human on the news last night, it could have been that he had earlier shat his pants causing him to walk in a dejected manner, but he certainly didn’t look like he would be able to live up to his new fix it title. He might be better at making dead bodies disappear than fixing no pay. Good on him for exposing the fools too quick to sign it off, but I just wish they would admit they were looking forward to hitting the teachers in this dirty way because they had failed to get results from their previous bullying.

    • tc 7.1

      Joyce has no choice, it’s his job and unlike others this one isn’t a quick fix. Going back to Datacom is a very costly and embarrasing outcome if it comes to that and will not be done quickly without big $$$’s.

      Also talent2 penalties V bonus for meeting targets, is it financially beneficial for them to hit a date then soak up ill defined and hard to prove penalty clauses that probably have plenty of ‘outs’.

      Any job cuts in the puiblic service impact oversight and governance on delivery of such a large contract maybe.

      Systems rollouts don’t take prisoners, when they go wrong it’s often a body count. Who’s first dunnokeyo ?

      • McFlock 7.1.1

        But how many penalties actually kick in if the client (minister) signed off on the progress points and didn’t know that a level 2 software defect meant “broke-ass piece of crap”? Caveat emptor must come into play at some point.

      • Pascal's bookie 7.1.2

        Reading the docs one of T2′s main concerns was to be not found in breach of the agreement. They’re publicly listed on the ASX so they would have had to report.

        the government seems to have been pretty accommodating towards that concern. T2 was hinting at possible legal action if the govt found them to be in breach.

        The relationship, from as far back as april, between T@ and the govt is just fucked.

        • handle 7.1.2.1

          Is that also why Minister Joyce approved some extra money when Talent2 asked for it a couple of years ago? How embarrassing to be bullied by Australians.

        • Tim 7.1.2.2

          “T2 was hinting at possible legal action if the govt found them to be in breach”.

          @PB…. Deja vu INCIS

          Only diff is that the problems with THIS piece of spongueware are fundamental

          I wonder how many of the “IT professionals” involved with it are going to include T2/Novapay on their future C.V’s.

          I spose NAct could always get T2 involved in that Pulla Bent scheme for getting those dirty filthy beneficiary bludgers back into work. They could probably put them on the NovaPay Helpdesk – or even train them up to be programmers.

          They should be made to make all the code public (including change control comments with names of those responsible – that’s IF there is such a thing as part of this bugger’s muddle)

      • Fortran 7.1.3

        I understand from Wellington that Datacom do not want a bar of it.

        They were dropped, although officially unhappy, but quite pleased to gave got rid of it.

  7. Tiresias 8

    Government Ministers are paid large sums of money to show foresight, not hindsight.

    I see I was wrong the other day when I suggested the Government wouldn’t throw bucket-loads of tax-payer money into a back-up Plan B’ involving DataCom picking up the pieces for them. According to the “Stuff” report DataCom and NovaPay have already refused to work together to sort this one out so we’ll be paying DataCom to set-up a completely independent system just in case –

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/8250237/Novopay-system-twice-delayed

    What has still to come out in the wash is what recourse the Crown is going to have against Talent2 for what appears to have been a completely unrealistic and optimistic undertaking, and this is entirely a matter of contract. As this contract was presumably negotiated and signed off by Labour you can expect Joyce to make a lot of play of any shortcomings in this regard.

    And I’m very much afraid that as usual the incompetents will walk away with their pockets stuffed with cash from the taxpayer.

    • I’m very much afraid that as usual the incompetents will walk away with their pockets stuffed with cash from the taxpayer.

      Are you talking about Talent or Blinglish, Foss and Parata?

      • Tiresias 8.1.1

        Hopefully Talent2′s reputation will be so damaged by this that they won’t be in the running to take over the payroll of a corner dairy. Of course the downside of that is that the directors and executives will hollow out the company over the next few months so that the Crown will be way down the list of creditors for compensation when it folds with less in its account that Zimbabwe, leaving the New Zealand tax-payer holding the bill for sorting out this stuff-up.

        I read that “four independent advisers – from Pricewaterhouse Coopers, the Social Development Ministry, the Primary Industries Ministry and the New Zealand Transport Agency – gave the system the green light.” Do you consider there is the remotest possibility Pricewaterhouse Coopers will refund any part of the no-doubt handsome fee it was paid for supervising this cock-up, or that any of the highly-paid public servants from the others will offer to take a reduction to the pay-grade of the pencil-pusher in a cubical farm three floors below who would not have done a worse job and would have been sacked had he done so?

        Blinglish Foss and Parata would simply resign if they had any integrity but they haven’t so they won’t. The egg on their faces is just part of the general coating of grubbiness and they won’t even feel it.

  8. North 9

    Senior Education Minister Parata deflects responsibility – “(smirking)…..hindsight”

    Associate Education Minister Foss deflects responsibility – “(shitting)…..hindsight”

    Parata’s “defence” sees her stay. Foss’s “defence” sees him go.

    What ?????

  9. Mike 10

    Yes, he shafted them, they’re not in his faction anyway, but at the same time as a Minister if you know bad information is going to come out, it’s much better to pre-emptively release it and present it your way so as to limit the damage

  10. shaz 11

    As far as new season of expensive focussed grouped weasle words “with hindsight” is joined by “talking down” as in “the oppostion are talking down New Zealand’s manufacturing industry”. Last seasons included “relaxed about” and “not ruling out” which were used to exhaustion.

    In the book Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahnemann, he discusses how we humans are inclined to take bland reassuring information at face value nearly all of the time. The Nats advisors know this really well and our democracy is a dead man walking as too many of us are “relaxed about” rather than “thinking critically about” compounded with this sort of modern, scientifically researched peacetime propaganda.

  11. RedLogix 12

    While I’m certain that there is any amount of finger pointing that could go on around Novapay, the core of the problem lies in the difference between the 30 year old Datacomm system and what Talent2 expected to deliver.

    In the old system Datacomm essentially hand-held school administrators and massaged all the data into the system. This was of course reasonably labour-intensive (read …expensive) and was behind the original, not unrealistic intention to migrate to a new system that was much cheaper to operate.

    Talent2′s offer was much cheaper, but failed to take into account not only the dynamic complexity of the old system … but the degree to which school support admin staff had been shielded from the system itself.. Talent2′s expectations around school admin staff being able to accurately enter information directly into the new Novapay system were hopelessly wrong. Worse still their system provided no simple way to correct the inevitable mistakes… nor anticipated the resources required to do so. And of course the Novapay software itself contributed errors and flaws of it’s own in that were incurred during process of scaling it up.

    When Talent2 realised that there was no way they were going to make any money on this project they did attempt to ‘de-scope’. I assume this means either renegotiating the targets, scope or price of the contract .. or backing out of the deal.. The Ministry flat-out refused. Which of course guaranteed a disaster. Forcing a contractor to deliver on something they cannot do without losing a great deal of money will ALWAYS result in a fuck-up.

    Of course Talent2 don’t emerge from this scot-free. They clearly underestimated how much work their system would need in order to cope with the complexity of the Education system. This is the sort of thing that does happen in contracts from time to time; and usually the first party to realise this is the contractor. They really don’t want to lose money and they’re highly motivated to find a way out of the trap they’ve signed up to; and most realistic commercial clients realise that forcing the issue is not going to have a happy ending. Usually the two parties finish up squabbling a bit, but eventually find a way through the mess.

    Not so when there is a political agenda at work.I believe that overarching pressure from the Cabinet to save money regardless of the consequences led the Ministry to push on with this contract long after the point when it should have been clear that a complete re-evaluation was necessary. This is a clear pattern of consequences we’ve already seen, first with the Foreign Ministry, then with the ‘civilisation’ of Defence and now with Education. (Credit to Tony Ryall for being a safe pair of hands in Health so far.)

    Ironically enough I happen to know that Datacomm have a nice new, state-of-the art Rolls-Royce of a payroll system ready to roll. Joyce knows this and is just getting all the ducks lined up to justify the dollars involved.

    • ak 12.1

      Who are the board. And why were they appointed, by whom. A screaming silence within the e3xcrement tornado.

      And gosh. look at those slippery-talking Talent 2 noses on Campbell Live tonight. Remind us of anyone?

      This is how we transfer wealth from bottom to top, boys and girls.

      Gain power by hatemongering via the media, which your friends own and control: maintain it via the same means.

      Joyce the Saviour. Holmes the God. Read all about it, live the Aotearoan Dream, and tread the path to neo-feudalism.

      Hate and Shearer-bash till you’re drunk: then wake up to the same, brand-new, same old day.

      Adolf didn’t fluke his cruel parody: it’s work, baby. Only treading those streets will make us free.

    • Humph 12.2

      Software vendor’s almost always underestimate RFPs (Requests for Proposals) for bigger projects to get their feet under the table with the money, then the PM, architects and analysts will underestimate again when they get into the details. Many I’ve experienced on both sides of the table, unless for smaller price work, use this tactic – and as you say, “finish up squabbling a bit, but eventually find a way through the mess.” – this is their business model for the bigger projects, otherwise they’d never get any work as someone will always undercut with outsourced dev, test etc to India et al.

      The contract winning process has failure built into it, as cheap never equals quality – or what you originally asked for.

      I’d argue that this happening “from time to time” is a lot more common than that (over 70%)… it’s just that, as you point out, this is political and in the many millions so it gets some publicity – most of them get swept under the carpet and the perpetrators are moved sideways internally or get another job. There are a number of projects in a number of ministries I’m aware of, that failed terribly or cost a shit ton more than first quoted. There’s a few more coming (that will probably never make the news) over the next 12 months too :)

    • Tiresias 12.3

      “Talent2′s offer was much cheaper, but failed to take into account not only the dynamic complexity of the old system … but the degree to which school support admin staff had been shielded from the system itself.. Talent2′s expectations around school admin staff being able to accurately enter information directly into the new Novapay system were hopelessly wrong.” – RedLogix

      True, but hopelessly wrong. It’s true that Datacom relied on school support admin staff to enter the details (disclosure – I’m married to a school admin staffer), but the system had been around long enough that most of the problems had been shaken out, school admin staff knew how the system worked and could work it and, most importantly, Datacom worked well with school admin staff if help was needed. Talent2′s looked to make the system more profitable for them, and cheaper for the Ministry, by off-loading even more of the work onto school-admin staff (paid out of the school’s bulk-grant with no compensation for the extra work) and tried to make it even cheaper for themselves by doing virtually nothing in the way of training school admin staff in the system, leaving them to pick it up and hoping any faults with the aircraft could be fixed once it was airborn and they showed up.

      “This is the sort of thing that does happen in contracts from time to time; and usually the first party to realise this is the contractor. They really don’t want to lose money and they’re highly motivated to find a way out of the trap they’ve signed up to; and most realistic commercial clients realise that forcing the issue is not going to have a happy ending.Usually the two parties finish up squabbling a bit, but eventually find a way through the mess. Not so when there is a political agenda at work.”

      It’s not uncommon in commercial negotiations for one tenderer to put in a super-low bid in the hope of getting the job and then, when things are sufficiently advanced to make cancellation not an option, to discover ‘unexpected’ problems requiring extra payments. Haven’t you ever employed a plumber? With taxpayer’s money on the table the Ministry are quite right to hold Talent2 to the contract they accepted and if Talent2 lose money on it tough, that’s business.

      “Forcing a contractor to deliver on something they cannot do without losing a great deal of money will ALWAYS result in a fuck-up.”

      True. The alternative, of course, is to let the contractor walk away with all the money it’s already been paid and start again from scratch with another contractor who has a fresh idea for a wheel – unless you have a contract with cast-iron revocation and claw-back clauses and a clear definition of what comprises a breach. If you haven’t your only option is to lean on the other party for performance and force it into a breach.

      • RedLogix 12.3.1

        Hump:

        Yes I’ve been on both sides of the contract table myself. I’ve learnt to abhor it; especially the infamous NZS 3910 form which is a recipe for the kind of thing you are talking about. Of course it is a complete myth that the standard form is the only form legally acceptable in common law. The parties are free to determine any arrangement that they mutually agree to. Unfortunately the contractual form everyone in this part of the world uses derives from a fundamentally confrontational mode of thinking designed to keep lawyers in business.

        Yet essentially any project of any kind is a collaborative process. The key thing to getting to a result is good project management. And this absolutely requires good information, good communication, early identification and resolution of issues and simple effective means for the parties to resolve problems .. or walk away.

        A sane business model is to build a relationship with your client in order to be confident of winning repeat business. I use a system of ‘preferred contractors’ who are reviewed every two years. Most of them have been with us for a very long time and deliver superb value for money. We write our own contracts and NZS3910 hasn’t darkened my desk for a very long time.

        Tiresas:

        On your first point I’m not quibbling. I think we’re saying much the same thing with a slightly different slant. What it boils down to is that Datacom used to have a lot of people, both within their organisation and within the schools who knew how to make the old beast work. If anything went wrong Datacom had the resources to fix it pretty seamlessly. Talent2 essentially screwed up at this point thinking they could dump all the admin costs onto school staff with minimal training or hand-holding.

        Realistically though the predatory contractural behaviour you describe is moderated by the fact that larger more mature vendors or contractors have a great deal of reputation and goodwill at stake in the marketplace. If they play that kind of hard-ball too often then pretty soon no-one will want to play with them … on any terms.

  12. Tim 13

    “Ironically enough I happen to know that Datacomm have a nice new, state-of-the art Rolls-Royce of a payroll system ready to roll. Joyce knows this and is just getting all the ducks lined up to justify the dollars involved.”

    Yep…. so let’s just cut all the crap, face-saving and ego exercising, and get it implemented as soon as possible.
    Oh no – but wait – face-saving and ego-exercising is far more important than those dirty filthy leftie teachers corrupting our kids who aren’t much better than all those dirty filthy bene bludgers that claim to be struggling. No – we better wait and deliberate a little longer. The fact that some teachers are having to deal with the likes of Baycorp as a result of this fiasco is far less important (And don’t get me started on how primitive some of Baycorp’s ‘systems and processes’ are!!!)

    • Andre 13.1

      And Mr Banks had a large share holding thru sugar corp via his trust. Pulled out mid 2012

    • Tiresias 13.2

      It’s not so simple, Tim.

      Talent2 were probably hoping that as it’s only taxpayer’s money “all that crap, face-saving and ego exercising” would have the Ministry throwing all the extra money it demanded at it to get the system working. Unfortunately for Talent2 Hekia Parata had so queered her pitch with the teachers that she could no-way have gotten away with it – as she tried to do.

      If the Government followed your advice Talent2 would claim the Crown was in breach of contract and try to negotiate a settlement giving it millions (of taxpayer’s money) for work done, no-doubt with additional claims for reputational damage on the grounds that the Crown didn’t give it a fair chance as some in the Ministry favoured Datacom &tc. It could all turn very nasty and legal and risk more taxpayer millions to fight out in court. In the meantime Datacom would be gobbling up more taxpayer millions with its “Rolls Royce” solution, knowing in negotiations that it has the Ministry over a barrel with there being no-one else able to offer a solution.

      It’s a mess for which Ministerial heads should roll, but from the taxpayer’s viewpoint the cheapest way out is to force Talent2 either to come up with what it promised at the price it offered, or throw up its hands and try to get out of the mess it’s in paying as little as possible while the Crown should screw it for every cent back it has had plus compensation for the ‘inconvenience’ it has caused teachers, the extra costs it has imposed on schools &tc.

      • Tim 13.2.1

        ‘usually’ I’d agree with you – except that in this case T2 has so demonstrably failed to deliver at every turb that the best they could hope for is a shitload of luck.
        Not really the point tho. I’m not sure that the contract actually OBLIGES them to use the system – especially as its unworkable – as it patently is. We’re talking about 6 months on now! – and as I said – with a record like that – good luck in any court case that might transpire. They could be hit on so many levels (like just for e.g., the bad faith they were threatening to throw at the customer after being unwilling to provide adequate helpdesk facilities to deal with an unworkable system they agreed to implement).
        No – we’re at a point now – if fact long past it, when throwing good money after bad is likely to be more costly than dealing with any court action – all of which is only going to show them up as shysters.
        You sound like someone I used to know btw looking at your comment. Someone maybe caught up in all that BS IT salesman-know-best; I-de-expert merry-go-round.
        Thank CHRIST I’m out of it. Bullshit and Jellybeans, heart attacks, hacks that keep turning up like bad pennies fuckup after fuckup isn’t actually worth it. You’ll find you can’t actually take it with you when you depart or pop your clogs, and even if you think you can – those that fawn all over you will get over you before the next iPhone is released.

  13. georgecom 14

    I seems to recall a comment from Joyce on the news last week along the lines of;

    Reporter: something about the people who signed off the package, Parata, English etc basically having cocked it up

    Joyce ‘they might be feeling a little silly (or words to that effect) at the moment’ or ‘they might be reflecting on their actions at the moment’.

    Essentially Joyce not bothering to argue with the reporter or defend his colleagues, but agreeing that whomever cocked things up will have to front for themselves.

    I did get the impression that Joyce has a bit of a ‘I don’t really care’ attitude, he just wants to try and find a solution to the mess. Any casualities are for Key and the casualities themselves to worry about.

  14. irascible 15

    Campbell did a great hatchet job on Campbell live tonight. The paper trail of ineptitude and a desirec to only provide the ministers with good news rather than revealing the true state of affairs showed that KeY must now take some responsibilty and dismiss the ministers responsible for such an enormous financial and policy cock up… starting with English, then Foss and finally and publically Parata.
    I look forward to Chris Hipkins eviscerating Key in the House tomorrow and then seeing the Cabinet being purged properly.
    If Key wont purge his cabinet then the responsible ministers should, in true parliamentary ritual, fall on their own swords and publicall tender their resignations.

    • emergency mike 15.1

      A) Key does the right thing.

      B) The ministers responsible do the right thing.

      C) Neither of the above.

    • karol 15.2

      I look forward to Chris Hipkins eviscerating Key in the House tomorrow and then seeing the Cabinet being purged properly.

      “Tomorrow”? Saturday?

      • irascible 15.2.1

        A decent press statement on Saturday followed up with the eviceration on Tuesday would do very well.

      • irascible 15.2.2

        The Novopay crash site is the responsibility of Key, Parrota, Fess, English and now Joyce. They are the Ministers responsible for allowing the obvious inability of Talent2 to deliver the contract as described in the heads of agreement negotiated by the MoE and accepted, on their advice, by Carter. The correspondence released on the Campbell Live show on Friday night showed that even those who’d recommended Talent2 get the payroll contract were getting antsy about the constant delays and threats around the contract. A competent Minister would’ve taken that concern and tension between the parties into account and refused to sign off on letting the system go live.

        Unfortunately, because this Cabinet only want to hear positive spin such a decision could never have happened.

        If Hipkins can continue to pressure those responsible we may yet see Key recognise that his great communicators are as irresponsible and inept as the public already know.

    • David H 15.3

      They won’t be back in the house until feb 12. So I’ll bet that Bennet or some other NACT will come up with something (More Bene Bashing) to take the heat off of that debacle.

      And as for Chippy eviscerating anybody. Thats a Tui moment in it’s self

  15. Skinny 16

    I wish someone within in Labour would shut that little man Chris Hipkins up. He walked straight into a media trap today. He stood there smiling too self absorbed to realize his mistake. Joyce will swat this Novopay mess up and pin it back as Labour fault in the first place.  

    • Tiresias 16.1

      “Joyce will swat this Novopay mess up and pin it back as Labour fault in the first place.” – Skinny

      If Labour didn’t do a competent job drawing up the contract for Novopay, providing for refunds and compensation if Talent2 failed to perform, he would be right to do so.

      Unfortunately two possible reasons for this having gone on for as long as it has are:

      a) the contract doesn’t, meaning that Crown in pulling the plug would lose millions,

      b) Dataco don’t (yet) have a suitable system to fill the gap and/or are using their position as the only available alternative to screw a gold-plated contract out of the Ministry.

      • Tim 16.1.1

        I hope you’re very very sure on “d)” above – I mean one that is unable to be quickly resurrected and can deliver in a manner that’s superior to NovaPay.

        • Tim 16.1.1.1

          Actually I take that back – only because the ego-exercising, the propensity to try and reinvent the wheel, the complete and utter bullshit that accompanies most large scale IT projects, the salespeople and flash Harrys that con people on the basis that they have the ability to pretend to be experts – just turns my stomach. Life’s actually a lot easier!
          I’ve said before though that I’m just an interloper that’s discovered this site – and it gets my respect because it actually works – and prbably on the basis that there’s an lprent or two (somewhat younger) that hasn’t yet got so pissed off with it that they are able to cope (as I probably would have had I not had to cope with the utlimate in BS artists – strangely enough in the banking sector, then gubbamint departments in situations such as this)
          Yep – I take it back, and the best of British luck.

    • McFlock 16.2

      Hmmm.

      What Hipkins could have said was “Labour started a good programme, and this government dropped the ball. Like the economy, government debt and New Zealand industry, National Party incompetence has turned it into a car wreck”.

  16. Jackp 17

    So, Key blames the “advisors” and keeps Parata and moves Foss on to another ministorial position. Is there anything Key and National has ever touched and it worked? I can remember while the Rena lay on the reef for 4 calm days Key was taking photo ops in Christchurch. Everything this government touches is the “rena”.. Another example is the Kim.dom saga. Some people are complaining about hearing too much about dot.com. I never heard of him until another one of Key screw ups. These morons cannot be doing as well as the polls indicate. No way.

  17. bad12 18

    Ha ha ha, how to mount a circular argument that would spin anyone’s mind off into deep space,

    On RadioNZ news at 8 someone supposedly speaking on behalf of talentless2 says that if the teachers had not started emailing in the details of their wages to talentless2 such a major clusterf**k of problems would not have occurred,

    Talk about defend the indefensible as the only reason the teachers were using email to send talentless2 the details of their pay was because the talentless2 system wouldn’t allow them to enter the details there,

    What it sounds like is this bunch of idiots saying that the teachers should have just shut it and accepted the fact that their pay was wrong,

    The loonies having taken over the assylum are now teaching us a new way of living, it may seem to be totally ‘man from Mars’ but if you all just relax and take your medication things will feel oh so normal in a wee while…

  18. CV - Real Labour 19

    Why do I get the feeling that I am watching Slippery and his minions pulling off another mean Houdini trick in front of our eyes? It’s like 4 years of deja vu.

  19. Erentz 20

    To all those excusing the ministers in this thread because they are not experts. First: I am, I will happily take their job if they are less qualified. Second: you’ll never get smart people in government because it requires voters to be smart and on the whole we aren’t. Third: the best we can hope for is that we demand out ministers have good judgement and can listen to experts who do know what they are talking about. But this requires leaders to work in the interests of everyone not themselves. And as we know, members are brilliant at assuming they know best an terrible at judging which experts to listen to.

    Quite simply if you want govt it projects to perform better start sacking the under performers (including in the ministry) and start promoting the experts. And get over our ego when those experts don’t play political kiss ass games and focus on real problems instead.

  20. toad 21

    I see Farrar is also spinning the “hindsight” line now:

    With the benefit of hindsight, a regional pilot should have been insisted upon before rolling out nationwide.

    • handle 21.1

      That line puts the blame on those who decided the shape of the project (the previous Labour government) rather than Farrar’s masters who oversaw it. He has probably been polling on it for them.

  21. Fortran 22

    As I have been involved for many years in computer work at design level and implementation can I please be advised by anybody as to when the specification was signed.

    It is at this point that I have seen, after say a year or two, that someone from a sub committee wants something else included.

    That in my experience starts the stuff up, as the designer starts to fiddle to implement the change, calculatiing the additional cost of course.

    After that SNAFU as we can now see. Nothing new in big projects.

    • Tim 22.1

      +1
      (as they say amongst the connected). And usually its at that point that the old saying “a camel is a horse designed by a committee” kicks in. Usually the sales ‘department’ and the bean counters agree to the deviation.
      INCIS, ABYSS, just abut every IT health related project ever conceived, DATANET (Tandem-based banking branch terminal network), “PLANWISE” and most other fuckups you can think of spring to mind. Well actually the latter was designed by a committee to begin with – its designers went on to become bean counters across the ditch where they were associated with auditing some ‘Hawaiian prince’ currently before the Queensland courts. I’ll not be surprised when I see them standing for Queensland Labor pretending to espouse left-wing poli-tiks

  22. Rogue Trooper 23

    24 more months of Salsa to be poured down the drain. cha cha cha Changes

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    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Tribute for Maungaharuru- Tangitu settlement
    Labour Member of Parliament for Ikaroa-Rāwhiti, Meka Whaitiri paid tribute to Maungaharuru-Tangitu today as their Treaty of Waitangi settlement became law. “The Bill acknowledges Treaty breaches that left Maungaharuru-Tangitu virtually landless. Today we were reminded of the history, mamae, loss...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Neglected rural and regional roads will cost more lives
    The government must take urgent action to prevent more accidents to truck drivers and other road users of increased logging trucks on neglected roads, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Transport spokesperson. “The dangers to drivers and other road users in the...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Judith Collins’ refusal to answer a disgrace
    If John Key is holding his Ministers to any standards at all, he must make Judith Collins answer questions about the senior Chinese official she met during her taxpayer-funded visit to China last October, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Judith...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Ryall needs to heed hospital workforce issues
    The public health workforce, the same one Tony Ryall argues is making a lot of progress is facing increased pressure and staff burnout through his continued shuffling of the deckchairs, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Mr Ryall uses all...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Our government: still no idea
    Happy Easter everyone, bad weather aside. A previous post of mine was called “The Government with no ideas”.  Unsurprisingly, the theme of the piece was of a current government thoroughly absent of any creative ideas or solutions to assist more...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • 12 things Forbes has to say about NZs about to burst economic bubble
    Forbes is not known for their socialist or left wing activism, so when they predict a grim economic failure, we should should collectively poo ourselves a little. National often get given this perception that somehow they are better economic mangers....
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • That Sinking Feeling: Labour’s urgent need for persuasive words and coura...
    THE LATEST ROY MORGAN POLL has Labour on 28.5 percent (down 3.5 percent) and the Greens on 11.5 percent (down 1.5 percent). At 40 percent, the combined vote of the two main centre-left parties has fallen 5 percentage points since...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Why the Labour movement should support a Universal Basic Income
    The Mana movement’s support of the idea of a universal basic income is a welcome development. It could become one of the litmus issues that define the party and prove extremely popular. If Mana are in a position to do...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Legal high and cannabis regulation
    I marched through Henderson last month with my fellow Westies to express our concern about the impact of so called “legal highs” on our community. Some people chanted loudly calling for banning, some expressing anger at the parliamentarians who voted...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Know your Tory fellow travellers and ideologues: John Bishop, Taxpayers Uni...
    . . On 19 March, I reported on the Board members of the so-called “Taxpayers Union”. With one exception, every single member of the Taxpayers Union Board was a current (or recent) card-carrying member or supporter of the National and/or...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • GUEST BLOG: Daniel Bruce – Internet Party: What Seems Ridiculous To The O...
    Imagine you’re a 18-21 year old, from a working class family. You’ve never had a landline phone at home, because your parents can’t afford the fixed monthly bills, so everyone in your familiy has a pre-pay mobile phone. Because of the same tight...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release We don’t need any more official reports. We know the problem and we have the plans....
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release New Zealanders do not want asset sales and they do not want the Government wasting millions of dollars on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground Monday, 27 Aug 2012 | Press Release Instead of betting on a boom and bust industry and selling off assets the government needs to invest in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance Sunday, 26 Aug 2012 | Press Release It is not fair that many rich New Zealanders are cheating on their tax. National’s 2010 tax cuts, that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release In its rush to sell our assets, National has found itself in a crisis of its...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Privacy across all departments needs checking
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Privacy across all departments needs checking Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release “People don’t have a choice about giving their information to the state so the Government has an absolute duty to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Restoring public trust and confidence is an essential goal and will require very major change starting from the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government must front up on full costs of asset sales
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government must front up on full costs of asset sales Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release It’s time for the Government to front up over just how much these asset sales are...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Our society has never been as unequal as it is today. New research from the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release “It would be a shock for any other Government to introduce such a self-defeatist piece of legislation but unfortunately...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney’s Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members’ ballot. “It’s...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 | Press Release Christchurch cannot afford to lose this agency The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Resignation rates among cops soar The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Work visa problems need monitoring The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today. The report...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • The issues behind the possible MANA-Internet Party Alliance
      Last weekend Kim Dotcom spoke at MANAs AGM to discuss the possibility of the Internet Party and MANA Party working together to defeat John Key this election. As someone who knows both Hone and Kim, I have a unique...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Manufacturing Upgrade   Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.   – The claims and opinions...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Get work on 29th and the ANZAC spirit deserts the TPPA
      Groser and co would have been spitting tacks last week as the ANZAC spirit deserted the TPPA negotiations. Australia has done a deal directly with Japan which undercuts the demand for Japan to opening all agriculture in the TPPA....
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • No fracking solution to climate change
    Some British tabloids and oil lobbyists have jumped on comments made by an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author that fracking could play a role in addressing climate change as an argument for it here in Aotearoa, so is fracking...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: At Last: A Manufacturing Policy Date of Release:  Thursday, April 17, 2014 Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Drone murder of New Zealander “justified” by Prime Minister
    Yesterday Prime Minister John Key justified the extrajudicial killing of a New Zealander in a US drone strike in Yemen with a few cynical, callous words at a stand-up press conference. Key said he’d been briefed by our spy agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Secret Policeman’s Ball
      Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball is back in New Zealand for one night of some of the best stand-up comedy from both national and international comics The freedom to provoke and in some cases offend is essential to the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • A case study of racism by Police at Auckland Airport
    A couple of days ago I returned from Samoa after attending a family matter and some contract work. Spending a few days in the warmth of our homeland was welcome relief from the cold weather starting to make its presence...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • An acute shortage of emergency youth housing
    The housing crisis is effecting everyone in Christchurch but some are more vulnerable than others. Recently I attended a workshop on emergency youth housing hosted by the 298 Youth Health Centre, who I worked for from 2001-2003. Over fifty people...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress
    Global unions the ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) and IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural and Hospitality Workers) today applauded the steps forward made in preventing often shocking abuse of crews on fishing vessels in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Families before commerce at Easter
    Families before commerce at Easter The retail workers’ union has hit back at critics of New Zealand's modest Easter trading restrictions. "Some things are more important than going to the mall, and for just three and a half days each...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Easter trading laws archaic, in need of overhaul
    Press release: ACT New Zealand Easter trading laws are outdated and in need of a major overhaul, said ACT leader Jamie Whyte today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • ALCP welcomes Campbell Live poll result
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party welcomes last night's Campbell Live poll, saying it is an overdue reality check for public opinion on personal cannabis use....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Q+A This Week 20/4/14
    Q+A This Week SUNDAY 20 APRIL, 9AM ON TV ONE The latest on the US-NZ relationship from the US military’s top man in the Pacific, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear . Deputy Political Editor Michael Parkin asks him whether we’re allies,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Community detention for pokie theft
    A 67-year-old former company director, convicted of stealing pokie machine profits, was today sentenced to six months community detention, 160 hours of community work and ordered to make reparation of $6,000....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Waitangi National Trust Board Amendment Bill
    The Māori Affairs Committee is inviting public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 14 May 2014....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Collaboration stops drugs from crossing borders
    Collaboration between Hong Kong and New Zealand Customs has stopped millions of dollars worth of drugs coming into New Zealand this year, with a number of seizures and arrests in both countries....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Call for public enquiry into the future of farming
    Fish & Game NZ is calling for a public enquiry “to examine the future of agriculture in New Zealand”....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Comment on Labour Policy Announcement by NZMEA President
    “This policy release from the Labour Party is so important that if it becomes government policy it would define a shift in New Zealand’s culture,” says Brian Willoughby President of the NZMEA and Managing Director of Plinius Audio and Contex...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Manufacturing policy makes sense but….
    On the surface much of Labour's prescription for manufacturing is sound though questions remain over some of the detail not yet announced, the Employers and Manufacturers Association says....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Where Are The 15,000 Jobs?
    “Paula Bennett is today proudly telling New Zealand that beneficiary numbers have decreased by 15,000 in the past year. There is no proud declaration that 15,000 jobs have been created in the same period,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty spokesperson,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Change of approach to government procurement needed
    The rail engineering industry has been totally let down by National’s lack of manufacturing policy, and Labour’s measures outlined today represent a marked shift in approach to supporting domestic industries, the RMTU said today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Depreciation Policy Shouldn’t Be Just for Pet Industries
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Labour’s announcement to beef up rates of depreciation in the manufacturing sector, but is questioning why David Cunliffe is picking winners rather than applying the policy across all sectors. Jordan Williams,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • FIFA U-20 World Cup NZ 2015 Kick Off Times Announced
    An array of kick-off times to suit football fans of all ages has been confirmed for the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015. With 52 matches spread across the nation, the public will be able to enjoy a collection...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • “Legitimate purpose” provides no protection under 167 form
    On Radio New Zealand today, the Privacy Commissioner indicated that ACC could only request information that was "relevant" for a "legitimate purpose". His view was therefore that the ACC167 form is not a "blank cheque" or...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • State: still keeping you safe on the road this Easter
    The long-awaited Easter/ Anzac break is nearly upon us while the weather may have taken a turn for the worse in several parts of the country, many Kiwis will still be packing up their cars to take a road trip....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Govt plan for community input into residential red zone
    Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Governor-General to visit Turkey
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, is to visit Turkey next week to lead New Zealand’s representation at the annual Gallipoli commemorations....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority on the death of Adam Palmer while in Police custody found the actions of Police were justified during the arrest. The report also found that Police took all possible steps to try...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
    New boundaries for the country’s 64 General and seven Māori electorates have been finalised – with an additional electorate created in Auckland. The 2014 Representation Commission has completed its statutory role of reviewing and redrawing electorate...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
    Save the Children New Zealand welcomes a new treaty which allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
    Labour takes manufacturing seriously Manufacturing workers and employers will all benefit from economic policies announced today by the Labour Party leader, David Cunliffe. The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union has welcomed the announcement...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Manufacturing policy welcomed
    “Today’s announcement of Labour’s manufacturing policy is very welcome,” says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg. “Just as many other developed countries are realising, having a strong manufacturing sector pays off in good jobs, retaining...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Operation Unite – a Blitz on Drunken Violence
    New Zealand Police are hoping to reduce the number of victims from alcohol related crime by asking the public to say ‘Yeah, Nah’ more often this holiday weekend....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Dunne Speaks
    Dunne Speaks 17 April 2014 There have been a number of harrowing cases presented this week about the impact of psychoactive substances on vulnerable young people. At one level, the tales are deeply disturbing. It is awful to see anyone...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Research announcement welcomed
    A leading Māori researcher has welcomed the announcement of the 2014 Te Pūnaha Hihiko - Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund by Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce and Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    At Last: A Manufacturing Policy FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company,...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Republic campaigners still positive after royal visit
    "Campaigners for a New Zealand Head of State are still feeling positive after ten days of royal events" says NZ Republic Chair, Savage. "Our polling before the visit showed increased support for a kiwi head of state. We have a...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Selling homes to foreigners benefits New Zealanders
    Winston Peters has apparently convinced David Cunliffe that when foreigners buy New Zealand property they make New Zealanders worse off. Mr Cunliffe has announced his intention to adopt Winston Peters’ policy of banning foreigners from buying...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes Key’s Rejection of ‘Fat Tax’
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Prime Minister John Key’s rejection of fat and sugar taxes ahead of this year's election. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Union, says:...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Law Commission Paper on a New Crown Civil Proceedings Act
    The Law Commission has released A New Crown Civil Proceedings Act for New Zealand , its Issues Paper on reforming the Crown Proceedings Act 1950. The Issues Paper proposes a new statute to replace the Crown Proceedings Act 1950....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for NZ workers
    Maritime Union says focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for New Zealand workers...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Make the choice to stay safe on the road
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