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Easy Vote or Voter Intimidation?

Written By: - Date published: 9:19 pm, February 17th, 2014 - 122 comments
Categories: blogs, democracy under attack, democratic participation, dpf, election 2014, elections, electoral commission, Judith Collins, national, same old national, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: , ,

Good to see Labour has stood up against National’s “harder-to-vote” Bill. David Farrar went apoplectic when Andrew Little announced Labour would oppose changes to the Electoral Amendment Bill dumping the easier-vote card, and adding a provision making voters state their name as well as have a card to get a voting paper.

According to Farrar  Little was telling lies. But it was him who wasn’t telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.His post claimed   “The Easy-Vote card will be used in the 2014 election in the same way as it was in 2011.” Graeme Edgeler corrected him in a comment: “It will not be used in the same way as the 2011 election. At that election, you handed over the card, and your name was crossed off and you were given a ballot paper. At the 2014 election, you will hand over the card, your name will be crossed off and you will also have to verbally give or verbally confirm your name. If you don’t do this, you won’t get a ballot paper.

National’s interest is to drive participation rates down. National submitters made a concerted push to tighten election requirements in the 2011 Election Review, as I wrote here. Their approach was rejected by the Select Committee at that time.  The Electoral Amendment Bill introduced in August last year contained a provision to make voting easier by extending the use of the EasyVote card. Now they have had another go; when the Bill emerged from  Select Committee last December  this provision had gone, and a requirement that every voter was required to state their name was added.

As Farrar implies in his post, the reason for this is to allow scrutineers to more easily challenge a voter’s credentials to vote. If a scrutineer does this, the returning officer automatically has to take a statutory declaration, with the underlying threat that a false statement is a criminal act. It is in the same line as voter intimidation practices in conservative States in the US. Expect  National Party scrutineers questioning more voter credentials in the 2014 election.

Farrar wasn’t the only one stretching the truth – Select Committee chair Scott Simpson claimed in Parliament last week that there were “49 submissions and they had heard 16″ – in fact there were 14 submissions on the Amendment Bill and the Committee heard three. Almost all of them focussed on ribbons on election day – none objected to the extension of the easy vote card and none advocated the change that emerged from the Committee. It was all National’s idea.

It looks to me like National thought they could slip through in this Bill what they couldn’t do after the 2011 election review.

It’s good to see that the Labour Caucus has picked them up on it, and affirmed that there is no consensus on the matter. Judith Collins is now hoist by her own logic – consensus decision-making means that any one party’s dissent means no decision.  The interrogation should not proceed and the easier vote card should.

It’s very disappointing to see the National Party so keen to make elections harder, for voters and for returning officers. It is another sign of how desperate they are to tip the odds in their favour.

122 comments on “Easy Vote or Voter Intimidation?”

  1. Sacha 1

    “stretching the truth … claimed in Parliament”

    you mean, lied
    let’s call a spade a spade

  2. Blue 2

    How is asking someone their name making it harder to vote? The dead or mute maybe, but I can’t see how this is making it more difficult.

    • bloodyhell 2.1

      its called intimidation numb nuts…

      Frankly if anyone questioned my eligibility to vote they would be getting a who the fuck are you and a very loud pyss off

      • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1.1

        That’s the thing; they won’t attack anyone strong.

      • Blue 2.1.2

        What a load of hysterical bullshit. Not one person will be prevented from voting. Every election I’ve been asked my name which , like a grown up would, I told them. Mountain meet molehill. “Who the fuck are you?”, they have legal status as a returning officer, bound by legislation to ensure only eligible voters get to vote. Would you prefer there were no checks, no- nuts ? Perhaps multiple votes suits you best.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1.2.1

          See Akldnut’s comment below.

          More than “one person” was prevented from voting on that occasion.

          Sounds like a pretty good opportunity for a citizen’s arrest went begging.

        • lprent 2.1.2.2

          Jez you are a moron. You can’t say a name that isn’t your own? So this would be a check on you. However for anyone with any kind of intelligence, then it isn’t.

          Of more importance is the inability of many of the people on the tables to actually hear and understand accents or indeed anything different. I’ve been asked several times over the decades by people on the desk to explain my first name. I guess like you, they’re just looking for things that they don’t understand. The easy vote system gets rid of most of that kind of simple bigotry.

          The reality is that the best check is the pre-election run to check the validity of the rolls – including getting people on the roll, and the post-election perusal of the rolls to find out double ups. For some reason this government has effectively been reducing the money required to maintain those effective checks. I guess they aren’t as interested in having a honest election as you profess to believe that they are.

        • Tracey 2.1.2.3

          every election? i wasnt asked mine at the last, just gave them my little card… are you 24?

        • Frank Macskasy 2.1.2.4

          Blue – let me put it in a way you might understand.

          If this had been LABOUR’S policy…

          [cue hysterical "Helengrad" and "Nanny State" spleen-vent and posts all over the right wing blogosphere]

          There. I trust that puts it into context?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2

      Really? Are you a bit slow or something?

      • Blue 2.2.1

        ” Are you a bit slow or something? “No I have an MBA :)

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.1.1

          Ah, perhaps you’re simply handicapped by myopia then.

          • Blue 2.2.1.1.1

            No not that either, I do have low tolerance for paranoid delusions though. Now cue the predictable response.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.1.1.1.1

              Does that explain your failure to address my comment at 10:50am, above, then? Here, I’ll make it easy enough for you by repeating it:

              “See Akldnut’s comment below.

              More than “one person” was prevented from voting on that occasion.

              Sounds like a pretty good opportunity for a citizen’s arrest went begging.”

              So, no paranoia, just the usual tiresome, corrupt right wing voter intimidation that provides yet another perfect expression of everything you represent.

        • Tracey 2.2.1.2

          How is that evidence you are not slow. I know a few people who got their weekend MBA;s that dont shine the brightest.

          • Blue 2.2.1.2.1

            Firstly the facetiousness of my statement seems to have gone over your head. There are some who believe having an MBA means you understand everything in business. It doesn’t any more than having law degree makes you Denny Crane.

            Smart people don’t do “weekend MBAs”. So that would explain your dim friends. Dim for thinking they were doing a real MBA. You could always try Otago for yours, like I did instead of sneering, it’s beneath you.

            • lprent 2.2.1.2.1.1

              Basically you demonstrate that even a decent course produces rejects. Have to admit that MBA9 convinced me that my family profession was dead boring and likely to remain that way. . I spent most of my time at Otago learning how to program well. Got me into a lot more companies and had whole more fun than managers or business gerbils running on their limited wheels.

              You really are a bit of a dork…

    • Tracey 2.3

      it depends on the what the criteria are for choosing who to ask for their name?

      “the reason for this is to allow scrutineers to more easily challenge a voter’s credentials to vote. If a scrutineer does this…”

    • Tracey 2.4

      Why do we need it?

      Banks is up facing charges for election irregularities, Singh was found guily of his nonsense… everything works just fine… don’t need the changes.

      Have a look at the BIll… most of it relates to money because political parties and politicians of certain parties have so little integrity they spend time and money chasing loopholes rather than doing what is clear from the intent of the law.

    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 2.5

      @ Blue

      There was a very thoughtful discussion in parliament over this easy-vote card and other issues being picked up after the first reading.

      Here is an excerpt from Andrew Little’s speech which may answer your question:

      “…The truth is that there are some voters for whom turning up to the voting booth—particularly if they have a difficult name, particularly if they have English as a second language, or particularly if they have a thick accent. Not every citizen is like Chris Auchinvole, who has managed to expunge his deep-seated Glaswegian accent so that he is more or less understandable most times that he speaks in the House. Many voters—people who are entitled to vote—are not able to change the accent with which they speak, and, often, turning up to a returning officer and having to say their name can cause confusion and can cause difficulty for both. For those who have speech impediments, the EasyVote card was a very easy way for them to cast their vote. The removal of it is a retrograde step….”

      Also the following is an excerpt from Ian-Lees Galloway’s excellent speech:

      “We have talked about our concerns with the EasyVote card. I think what we have seen here today, in its own quiet way, is the parliamentary process in practice. The whole point of having a first reading, a select committee hearing, a second reading, a Committee stage, and a third reading is that we go through the issues over and over again, and sometimes we bring fresh eyes to an issue and become alert to concerns that may not have previously been raised. That is what has happened in this instance, where the Labour Party has taken another look at the issue of not widening the use of the EasyVote card, and the issue of requiring people to make a verbal statement when they present their EasyVote card. We see this as potentially being something that will present a barrier to people participating in elections.

      In no way do we suggest that there is any great conspiracy here to stop people participating, but we think that could be an unintended consequence of that move. We so often hear of genuine conspiracies in the United States—in particular, from the political right changing the rules to put barriers up to people participating in the electoral process. It is often done in the name of reducing electoral fraud. There is no evidence of electoral fraud, widespread or narrowly focused, in New Zealand. I think it is a spurious argument to suggest that these measures will create a situation where electoral fraud can be entered into. So we do ask that Parliament look at this. We ask that we all work together to build a consensus, given the new information and the new perspective that the Labour Party is offering.”

      [added bold]

      There were other excellent comments made, which can be found in transcript form here

  3. risildowgtn 3

    When they ASK what your name is YELL your name at them and then ask them what theirs is LOUDER

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1

      It has to be more than that. Volunteers have to be prepared to defend New Zealand against the National Party on the day.

    • You_Fool 3.2

      Wouldn’t it be better to whisper it so that the returning officer can hear but not the scrutineer? Surely it is the returning officer that needs to hear to ensure that you haven’t stolen someones card….

      • framu 3.2.1

        write it on a bit of paper and dont show the nat plant

        • You_Fool 3.2.1.1

          How about we have a card that has our name on it and we give it to the returning officer? Better yet to ensure every registered voter has one the government should print these and post them out, along with a unique number so that it is definite that the person with that card is the right person….

  4. RedBaronCV 4

    Are they hoping to sit there and challange every second person in left held seats so that queues build up and people go without voting. It takes time I imagine to do a statutory declaration.
    Of course East Coast Bays would be the seat to try this in.
    The person crossing your name off always yells it at the scrutineers anyway.

    • lprent 4.1

      They are not meant to. What they are meant to give is the page and line number of the printed roll.

      • RedBaronCV 4.1.1

        Really!? I complained about the loud verbals one election, “isn’t it supposed to be a secret vote ” aand acheived instant unpopularity. Perhaps it’s something to do with being on the Maori electorate roll and a bit like my details coming up as one of a kind in my census stats block.

  5. You_Fool 5

    I wonder what the best way to troll this system is… i guess i have approx 9 months to think on this…

  6. Akldnut 6

    At the 2009 election before the Easy Vote card I was scrutineering in a Waitakere booth , Nat scrutineers questioned every ballot paper that had more than half of the tick outside the box and demanded they be invalid. The booth manager agreed with them because the rules say the tick must be in the box, we ended up with Paula Benefit.

    They’ve been trained to nullify as many as possible.

    There were also a number of Asians and Islanders who had difficulty getting their names and addresses conveyed to booth staff because they couldn’t speak English.

    I’m expecting the Nats to racially profile each person who enters the booth and target those who speak little to no English and the young and timid first time voters who may be intimidated by the situation.

    • Tracey 6.1

      Was this challenged by anyone officially, especially labour? Did it form part of the recount?

      • Akldnut 6.1.1

        Yes I challenged it vehemently and got about a third of them back in.
        I almost ended up having a fight where one of them started threatening me and got right up in my face.

        • Tracey 6.1.1.1

          Did you challenge it officially though, if you only got a third backin? Did you write tot he electoral commission?

          • Akldnut 6.1.1.1.1

            No I immediately challenged what they were doing on the night and had them re-instated on that night.

    • Rosie 6.2

      Akldnut, that is incredibly interesting and disturbing and thank you for sharing that information. Good on you for challenging it and getting approximately a third back in. It’s particularly enlightening information given the recount that occurred and Pullya Benefit (with acknowledgements to the first person who came up with that name)got her seat by a whisker.

      What you’ve said is worrying and really needs to be in the face of the msm prior to the election.

      Whats also worrying is that I wouldn’t doubt for a minute that the Nat scrutineers would ethnically profile voters an an attempt to target them for an invalid vote. They are playing so dirty already that anything immoral and improper is quite possible.

    • DavidW 6.3

      Um ….. shouldn’t anyone who qualifies to vote have enough English skills to say their name and address?

      • Akldnut 6.3.1

        Only in your deluded world “Planet Key”, which has no semblance to reality.

      • The Real Matthew 6.3.2

        Yes DavidW you are correct

        But it’s more fun to blow the whole thing out of proportion and make up a story about it

      • Tracey 6.3.3

        No, anyone who is asking for the name needs to be able to understand all accents and names.

        What would the english be for “Falaniko Tominiko”?

        • Akldnut 6.3.3.1

          Looks like you’re not alone on your world – John Key, National cabinet & a shit load of RWNJ’s.

      • Nope, we should just need to check them against a list of voters and count their vote. Especially as this country has other official languages, demanding that everything official require skill in the English language is not only discriminatory, it’s actually not legal for official government documents like voting papers.

        There should be the absolute minimum of requirements on voters to cast a valid ballot, and the security and integrity checks for the election should be handled on the back-end, like they always have been. It’s bad enough the tricks scrutineers can pull already.

  7. Tracey 7

    So essentially National’ and Farrar’s position is this.

    If you want to potentially or actually influence policy by donating you can be kept secret but if you want to vote you have an extra hoop to jump through?

  8. natwest 8

    Wasn’t this change proposed following Labour Party supporters vote “rigging” at the 2011 election, specifically in South Auckland, if my memory serves me correctly.

    Let us not forget that little fact.

    That aside, this is just another beat up by the labour Party to deflect focus/scrutiny from the unfolding political storm that is about to errupt over David Cunliffes involvment/knowledge of Political corruption at TVNZ & their support of the Labour Party.

    There is going to be blood spilt over this one – I can see it coming.

    Bring it on, I say!!!!

    • Tracey 8.1

      can you post the link tot he vote rigging?

      what is your position on anonymity for those seeking political influence through donations?

      • natwest 8.1.1

        It was in the NZ Hearld the week following polling day – go look it up yourself.

        • Cemetery Jones 8.1.1.1

          Oh come on, NW don’t be coy. Validate your assertion with evidence.

        • Tracey 8.1.1.2

          Was my second question too hard for you?

          what is your position on anonymity for those seeking political influence through donations?

          Owen Glen saga, John banks saga… seems more evidence of anonymity of donors being a problem than voter fraud…

          You read the herald? Strange given you think they were soft on Len Brown.

        • Tracey 8.1.1.3

          that’s not where you saw it recently;y though is it NatWest… You have only one source for your drivel…

    • Rosie 8.2

      “That aside, this is just another beat up by the labour Party to deflect focus/scrutiny from the unfolding political storm that is about to errupt over David Cunliffes involvment/knowledge of Political corruption at TVNZ & their support of the Labour Party.”

      Yeah, just about fell off the couch laughing when I saw that on the news last night. This is just the Gnats going hard out with their dirt digging. What was so funny was that 3news, brazen pimps for the National Govt reported it – the level of hypocrisy was just stunning.

      natwest bank, have you never sent an email from work that was not work related? There may have been some “not ok for work” things going on that we’ve yet to find out but it can hardly be on the scale of the Herald outrightly endorsing it’s allegiance with Nat Ministers and Whale Oil by publishing twitter photo’s of the cosy shenanigans of a corporate box at a sports event.

      • natwest 8.2.1

        TV3 brazen pimps for the National Party, really – John Campbell & co?

        Come on now, fess up – what did you really have for breakfast this morning?

        Sheesh!

        • Rosie 8.2.1.1

          Yes really. Maybe you haven’t watched 3News, god knows why I still do, but there has been a clear anti Labour, anti Cunliffe in particular, agenda for quite some time.

          Couple of examples:

          Labour Party conference 2012. Patrick Gower manufactured some BS about a “leadership coup”. Didn’t happen and wasn’t happening, as witnessed by the conference attendee’s who posted here on TS about what was actually going at the conference.

          GCSB meeting at Mt Albert Memorial Hall, Auckland 2013. Jono Hutchinson got in a lather and suggested that Cunliffe was angling for a leadership grab or some bollocks to that effect. Ditto the above. Cunliffe got a seat near to the front row as he got to the meeting early. Shearer was late and was standing at the back. A question was put to the Labour Party Leader as to whether they would repeal the GCSB Act if they got into power. Cunliffe reluctantly answered on behalf of Shearer who was at the back and couldn’t be heard. No big deal but TV3 turned it into a drama.

          Last night: Shane Taurima used TVNZ emails in Labour Party comms last year in August. Not that smart but hardly crime of the century, compared to the Herald example given above. TV3 have a field day, followed by a piece about the “hypocrisy” about Cunliffe calling Key out on his “mansion” when Cunliffe lives in house worth 2.5 mill. Key’s house in Parnell is worth 9.9 mill. Bit of a difference there. Pretty sure Cunliffe doesn’t jet off to a property in Hawaii at every given opportunity either.

          Maybe it’s something to do with that bail out loan they received from the Nat Govt a few years back and something to do with “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours”

          The pro govt media bias and manufacturing of “news” in our country is stunning, as has been routinely exposed here at TS. And I haven’t even started on Fearfux…………….As Paul reminded me the other day, there is a very informative site that confirms one’s worst fears about media bias.

          http://fearfactsexposed.wordpress.com/

          My breakfast was just fine thanks

          • natwest 8.2.1.1.1

            Rosie, Rosie, Rosie – sorry darling, but no one other than those on the left buys into that argument.

            The msm journalists/reporters are academics, products of our Universities & similar learning institutions in the main, well indoctrinated in the ways of Socialism etc.etc.

            Lets name, but a few shall we: Chris Trotter, Bryan Edwards, Brian Rudman, John Armstrong, Colin Espiner, Corin Dann, John Campbell, Tim Watkins, Tim Wilson, Barry Soper and the list goes on – and thats not including TVNZ and TV3 reporters who unashamedly put the boot into anything right of centre all the while protecting those on the left.

            You know the treatment John Banks got as one example- but on the same token the media went all quiet and soft on Len Brown. Blatant bias that one.

            Helen Clark got away with “murder” lies and deceit, paintagate, cargate and so it goes on.

            If anyone truly beieves the media is right leaning – they have rocks in their heads.

            • Tracey 8.2.1.1.1.1

              If you think the media is soft on len brown, can I suggest you broaden your reading to include the herald and to watching TV1 and TV3 news. Whaleoil isnt actually a media outlet despite what the convicted criminal wants you to believe.

              “John key gets away with “murder” lies and deceit, DotCom, tea parties, skycity, transrail shares etc”

              If anyone truly believes the media is left leaning – they have rocks in their heads.”

              FIFY

              see how perception changes everything

            • framu 8.2.1.1.1.2

              “:The msm journalists/reporters are academics, products of our Universities & similar learning institutions in the main, well indoctrinated in the ways of Socialism etc.etc.”

              gower?

            • Sacha 8.2.1.1.1.3

              Soper an academic socialist?
              You’re hilarious, or a silly libertarian.

            • karol 8.2.1.1.1.4

              Patrick Gower? Duncan Garner? John Armstrong? Paul Henry? Fran O’Sullivan? Guyon Espiner? …… Lefties? Really? Pretty skewed spectrum you have there.

            • RedBaronCV 8.2.1.1.1.5

              How come everyone on your list is a bloke. Have they gotta woman ban going.

        • framu 8.2.1.2

          hate to let you in on the little secret here natwest – but v3 does have more news staff than just john campbell, and does screen more shows than campbell live

    • You_Fool 8.3

      From NZ herald:

      Search Results for ‘Labour Party supporters vote “rigging” at the 2011 election,’.
      Showing 1 – 0 or about 0 matches for the keywords(s) ‘Labour Party supporters vote “rigging” at the 2011 election,’.
      Search Results for ‘Labour Party supporters vote “rigging” at the 2011 election,’.
      Your search returned no results.

      Furthermore, searching for “Election 2011″ and “South Auckland” gives multiple pages of responses, none appear to be about rigging of polls…

  9. Tracey 9

    WOW. Just WOW @ the comments in that Farrar thread. Dont normally read the comments but do read his offerings.

    Am trying to find the criteria for challenging someone after they say their name.

  10. Bill 10

    So, if I’m asked and I say my name is ‘Bill Whatever’…then I have to make a statutory declaration. If I’m then asked to confirm my name is ‘Bill Whatever’, then I don’t get to vote seeing as how my name on voting stuff is (I think) ‘William Whatever’. Also, if I forget to throw in any middle names when asked, then I have to make a statutory declaration.

    Am I getting this right so far?

    Is there anything around the statutory declaration stating that I must be asked to confirm my name as it appears on the voting role rather than the, just as legitimate, name that I give?

    • Tracey 10.1

      No one seems able to state what the criteria for challenging a voter to make a statutory declaration are?

      Maybe if the returns person only knows english and they think Falaniko Tominiko is not pronounced by the voter as they think it should be, they will demand a declaration?

      SURELY the focus today must be on that criteria? especially for those who want a fair electoral system they can trust.

  11. Bart 11

    Or it could be that by giving your name as well as a card, it means that it is less likely that a card illegally removed from a mailbox could be used by someone other than yourself. Seems a reasonably prudent method of ensuring that every vote is a valid vote. As to what name you use, it should be your legal name, as per your passport, birth certificate or on the voter card. I do wonder at the tenor of some of the comments on here, especially given that the most recent conviction in respect to electoral fraud was made against Daljit Singh of the Labour Party.

    Additionally, there are representatives of EVERY party at polling booths precisely to ensure neutrality. Some of you really need to change the tin foil inside your hats!

    • Tracey 11.1

      Are you saying if I use someone else’s voting card, I wont be able to practice their name first?

      Can you post your evidence for such levels of voter fraud in NZ that time and money needed to spent on this part of the Bill?

      Any objection to those who seek to influence policy by making political donations having full legal names published?

    • Hayden 11.2

      Or it could be that by giving your name as well as a card, it means that it is less likely that a card illegally removed from a mailbox could be used by someone other than yourself. Seems a reasonably prudent method of ensuring that every vote is a valid vote.

      The name is on the card, or at least it was in 2011:
      http://www.elections.org.nz/voters/voting-election/easyvote-cards-make-it-easy

      • Hayden 11.2.1

        And obviously, it’s on the fucking envelope that the card comes in. You know, so it can be put in the mailbox in the first place.

      • Tracey 11.2.2

        Perhaps Bart can’t read?

        • Akldnut 11.2.2.1

          I have plenty of whanau who have Maori names but are white as the driven snow, will they be forced to sign a stat dec or have to carry their passports with them to the polling booth?

        • Bart 11.2.2.2

          Bart can read, and can type too. As for political donations, I have no problem at all with full disclosure. That is not my point. If you want to talk about electoral malfeasance, what about the $800,000 overspend by the Labour Party that has never been paid back? What about the PROVEN electoral fraud perpetrated by Daljit Singh? As to those influencing policy, care to comment about Clare Curran’s visits to a certain Coatesville address?

          [lprent: Apparently you can't read.

          1. ...what about the $800,000 overspend by the Labour Party that has never been paid back?
            http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10405610
            The police decided that there was no crime. The auditor general made a ruling that ignored a decade of previous practice. And the amount was repaid. Go and ask the auditor general.
          2. ..by Daljit Singh? isolated incident dealt with by the courts..
          3. It is illegal for politicians to talk to other politicians?

          Piss off moron, troll elsewhere and don't come back. You are too stupidly ignorant for this site. This is a site about politics. Jerking off with simple myths isn't up to the standard ]

          • One Anonymous Bloke 11.2.2.2.1

            Yeah, I’d care to comment. Most people here (Labour, Green or otherwise) seem to regard Clare Curran with suspicion. If you have evidence that the Labour Party (which as a broad church will attract the odd bad egg the way the National Party embodies the love child of Aaron Gilmore and Graham Capill) has been involved in any of these crimes at a National (in both senses of the word) level, bring it on.

            Face it, you had to cherry-pick facts to make your point at all. What chance have you of being a credible source in this matter?

            Full disclosure means no more Waitemata Trust. No more seeing eye Aldgate Whitechapel corruption. You understand that, don’t you?

            • Matthew Whitehead 11.2.2.2.1.1

              To be fair, they can still have a Waitemata trust, and it should still be able to make political donations, it should just have to give a public breakdown of where its funds came from before making any donations, which will probably make it obsolete.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                The new law has to be clear: no more identity-laundering of political donations.

                Kim.com was quite happy to be known as a $50k donor to John Banks. If he’s ok with it why are these others being so coy?

                It’s hard to shake the perception that there’s something dodgy about secret backers.

          • Bart 11.2.2.2.2

            So, you acknowledge the overspend, done illegally, in order to steal an election, yet you lecture me about commenting on electoral fraud? You also acknowledge the Daljit Singh case. Kim Dot Com is not a politician, he is a convicted fraudster, deadbeat, and smoke and mirrors merchant.

            Additionally, I am not a moron, or a troll. I also dislike being referred to as stupidly ignorant. I do enjoy a robust political debate, but the minute you descend in to personal attacks, it simply reinforces the impression held by most people that on The Standard, the stock response to a reasoned challenge is an attack on the messenger.

            The Labour overspend was a blatant Machiavellian ploy (Google Machaiavelli if you get confused!)

            What you have also missed is that I am in FAVOUR of full disclosure. What you do not know is that I have voted for Labour in the past. I was served by a very competent MP called John Terris in the old Western Hutt electorate. However your pavlovian response to a valid challenge and a valid point is to descend in to petty name calling and abuse. You demean the discussion, your party and yourself, and you should be ashamed of yourself for doing so.

            [lprent: So as I suspected - no acknowledgement of your glaring errors. Therefore no ability to debate

            1. You asserted that Labour hadn't paid back the overspend that an auditor (rather strangely) identified. They had. It also had nothing to do with the bill in the post.
            2. What Daljit Singh and his associates did for a local body postal vote was caught and sentenced appropriately. Exactly as the current law provided for. If you read the post it is about a change to the current law for general elections.
            3. If Kim DotCom isn't playing politics then he is doing a damn good job of imitating it. Many MPs have various kinds of convictions, criminal or otherwise. It isn't a exclusionary criteria. It also had nothing to do with the post,

            You entire comment is what is known as a diversion. It wasn't a "challenge" because it had nothing to do with the topic of the post. I'll tolerate minor diversions or diversions that escalate out of the conversation. But whole comments that have absolutely nothing to do with the post or the debate are way out of line.

            If you wanted to raise different topics then you could have done so in OpenMike. That is what it is there for.

            But basically your behaviour isn't acceptable here because you're acting like a troll. Pig-ignorant, apparently unable to learn and diversionary as I've identified above. These get in the way of the many other people actually having a debate. Basically you don't add anything to the debate because you appear to have nothing to add.

            I really don't care who you may or may not have voted for or anything else. That simply isn't in my brief as moderator. What I'm concerned is your behaviour on our site against what is in the policy. I also don't care about your hurt feelings. You are a guest on our site. If you want to try to set the rules then get off your lazy butt and make your own.

            If you don't want me to stop describing you the way I see you, then stop acting in a manner that allows me to do so. But I really can't be bothered with someone acting like a pig-headed fool. ]

  12. natwest 12

    Change of direction if I may, but what is up with the Mesiah lately – I mean every time he opens his mouth he “cocks up” – talk about coming across as ill informed and out of touch is an understatement.

    This week in particular (and it’s only Tuesday) has been an unmittigated disaster for him, stuff up after stuff up.

    Labour gave us “bumbles” and now they have dished up “stumbles” – I have to say from a Labour perspective, dropping bumbles for stumbles might well be it’s ultimate undoing this election.

    I also here staff are deserting his office in droves!! Perhaps they can’t handle the arogance and bull shit.

    Just saying.

    • Tracey 12.1

      as opposed to the young things leaving national?

      Powers et al…

      Do you have original thoughs with factual foundation or do you sit with whaleoil, kiwibllog and TS, and nod your head frenetically like a doll on a dashboard at the first too, while giggling at you pasting to TS?

  13. Thomas 13

    I read the article and I have no idea what the fuss is about. Having to say your name seems entirely reasonable. How is that intimidation? Are people scared of their own name?

    If someone was intimidating voters, they could do that without asking names. Intimidation is entirely orthogonal to this issue.

    If anything, it’s insufficient. I was really surprised when I first voted that I didn’t need to present ID or anything. It would have been so easy to vote on behalf of someone else. The second time I voted, I did so from overseas. There was still no identity verification and no address verification either (easy vote card verifies address). It would be trivial to commit fraud on a large scale.

    I want to be confident that our electoral system is sound.

    • Tracey 13.1

      Mr Singh was found guilty. Banks is on trial. The current Act is working. Funny that the proponents on wasted spending seem happy to waste time and money on this part of the Bill.

      Can you tell me what the criteria are for challenging the voter after they have stated their name?

      • Bart 13.1.1

        I would assume the criteria would involve a name not being on the roll!

        • Tracey 13.1.1.1

          that would be known by checking their card first Bart, no need to ask their name to find that out.. Have you read the Bill?????

          Why do you assume the criteria? This is to be law, don’t you want the criteria to be part of that law?

    • Tracey 13.2

      That’s why you have posted here many times your disgust at Banks behaviour

    • lprent 13.3

      You’re missing the point really. All you are saying is that someone knows the name of whoever they are voting as. That is about as secure as – well nothing.

      ID? Huh. What ID? These days I have a drivers licence with a photo that doesn’t look like me at all. But I didn’t have one for 10 years because I wasn’t driving. Similarly my passport expired in 1999, and I just got another one last year. That is a gap of almost 15 years.

      Sure I have a birth certificate. It is a lump of paper issued in 1959.

      But you’re missing the real security. Widespread electoral fraud only works if you’re sure that the person you’re impersonating isn’t going to vote. Otherwise it gets picked up when the votes are reconciled. Since most people vote, and the roll is kept pretty well up to date, then there is a system level check against fraud.

      This whole thing (as Mike says) just reeks of the National arseholes trying to exclude voters.

      Basically your points are crap because you obviously haven’t bothered to engage your brain.

      • Tracey 13.3.1

        Not one of them has said how they feel about people trying to influence policy by donating to political parties being anonymous… despite their stated desires to “be confident that our electoral system is sound”

        And, they have been asked…

      • natwest 13.3.2

        No, you pin-head, his comments are in fact are very credible.

        The Waitakere election night result was overturned after Labour vote rigging/recount, and if my memory serves me correctly there was also incidents of Labour vote rigging in South Auckland, which resulted in some convictions.

        So, you are the one talking crap.

        [lprent: There was a recount in Waitakere as there virtually always is when the vote is less than a few hundred. Recounts invariably return a different result. If you want to assert the fact of "rigging" then you should provide a link for your assertion. You are moderated until you provide a link to support your assertion or retract.

        South Auckland. It was a local board election, http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11171530
        Read the actual detail of the case and consider that this is the worst case I know of in recent years. In particular not the method of detection

        During the trial, Crown prosecutor Robin McCoubrey told the court that Daljit Singh falsely changed the addresses of a large number of people on the Electoral Enrolment Centre's website before the 2010 election so they were registered as living within the boundaries of the Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board.

        Mr McCoubrey said the enrolment centre contacted the police when it noticed a large number of names were being registered in the electorate and that forms were being downloaded from computers that had the same IP addresses.

        You detect electoral fraud with systems. You don't detect it with pissant procedures of no value to the task at hand. ]

        • Tracey 13.3.2.1

          so the current system works…if people were convicted.

          you have pointed me to one conviction,now you say convictions plural… soucre/s??

          You still need more time to think of your answer to this question?

          how do you feel about people trying to influence policy by donating to political parties, being anonymous?

          Can you tell me what the criteria are for challenging the voter after they have stated their name?

        • Akldnut 13.3.2.2

          “The Waitakere election night result was overturned after Labour vote rigging/recount”

          What a load of shit!
          I know one of the scrutineers on the recount and that was never mentioned when I asked about it. He said that the count was just incorrect.

          Post some proof or stop making shit up!

        • mickysavage 13.3.2.3

          Absolute crap nattiest. The vote changed because in one particular booth they miscounted about ten votes. At the recount this was corrected. There were other booths where there were miscounts but they tended to be only one or two votes and they went either way.

          You are talking a load of bollocks. How about you provide some links. The only convictions involved the actions of a person at the local body elections, not the general elections.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 13.3.2.3.1

            Mickysavage is right Natwest, although I think he is being too soft on you.

            I think you’re lying, deliberately, in a perfect expression of everything you stand for.

        • You’re proposing we set up fire extinguishers and the reason you’re giving is that we just had an earthquake.

          You don’t fix voter registration fraud by putting barriers to voter impersonation fraud in place. The only type of fraud that requiring people to state their names could catch is really poorly executed voter impersonation fraud, and no study of electoral fraud has ever suggested that voter impersonation is a significant problem in any democracy. The incidence of voter impersonation fraud in the USA, for example, is so low that it’s not even a significant fraction of a percent. I imagine it’s lower in New Zealand because the vulnerability in our system is clearly registration fraud.

          You want to know how we address that vulnerability? From the back end, as people have already argued. It’s very effective and we maintain a high degree of integrity in our voting system with little burden to voters, which is the ideal way to run an election. By all means, give us every idea for securing our system you have that doesn’t inconvenience voters either at the time of registration or during election day, and most of them we’re probably either already doing or we’d support it. But don’t fool yourself that this change will achieve anything significant except suppressing voters opposed to the National party.

      • Bart 13.3.3

        Under what grounds would National want to exclude voters? And as it is a secret ballot, how can they assume that the voter they wish to exclude is a National Voter? Why do you think people are not allowed to promote political parties on the day of the election. It’s a secret ballot FFS, do you people see conspiracy everywhere, or can you just not accept the fact that the electorate spoke, and Labour lost?

        If someone is unwilling, or unable, to speak their own name in a free and open society, which New Zealand IS, should they be voting anyway?

        • Tracey 13.3.3.1

          Does that apply to donors of political parties Bart, i want them to speak thir rnames too. In the interests of an open and fair society

        • One Anonymous Bloke 13.3.3.2

          Racist National enablers, unless enough volunteers can be found to defend New Zealand against them, will attempt to exclude people on the grounds of ethnicity. Suck it up.

          • Tracey 13.3.3.2.1

            there has been an uncommonly high number of national supporters in here beating their drums today.

        • lprent 13.3.3.3

          I see that I’ve already banned you for being a stupid troll in another comment. No point to telling you why your comment above is stupid.

          If someone is unwilling, or unable, to speak their own name in a free and open society, which New Zealand IS, should they be voting anyway?

          However your last paragraph is tells others everything they need to know both about you and who National are targeting and why. Lets just add racist shithead on to that as well.

        • RedBaronCV 13.3.3.4

          Well, put your brain into gear, the easiest way statistically is to challange voters in booths that usually vote heavily for the opposition, all women except those in the up market remmers burbs, young people etc , etc. Or don’t you think that your lot of Nact’s are that smart?

        • National wants to exclude voters to win. If Labour thought they could do the same, I wouldn’t put it past them, but it’s not a viable strategy for Labour in most cases- that said if Labour started closing down rural voting booths, I hope you’d be up in arms about it. This is just a more subtle way of doing the same thing from National.

          You want to know what my concern is? That every citizen should get a vote if they want one. Even the citizens I disagree with and think will vote for people who will harm our country, because in the long run, the more engaged we all are in the political process, the harder it will be to fool us all.

      • Thomas 13.3.4

        You’re missing the point really. All you are saying is that someone knows the name of whoever they are voting as. That is about as secure as – well nothing.

        That’s my point. What’s the fuss about? It’s a non-requirement; it means nothing.

        ID? Huh. What ID? These days I have a drivers licence with a photo that doesn’t look like me at all. But I didn’t have one for 10 years because I wasn’t driving. Similarly my passport expired in 1999, and I just got another one last year. That is a gap of almost 15 years.

        Sure I have a birth certificate. It is a lump of paper issued in 1959.

        Currently there is nothing to stop me voting as a random person. (The electoral roll is publicly available and contains all the necessary information.) The only way I’d get caught is if that person voted as well. And by caught, I mean they know someone committed fraud, but not who.

        Requiring ID would at least present some barrier. I’d either have to buy a fake ID or steal someone’s ID.

        This whole thing (as Mike says) just reeks of the National arseholes trying to exclude voters.

        I cannot understand the logic behind this assertion. How would this exclude voters? Is there anything you don’t think is National trying to do evil?

        • lprent 13.3.4.1

          That’s my point. What’s the fuss about? It’s a non-requirement; it means nothing.

          So adding something completely useless to the functional requirement is done for what reason? So that National MP’s can hold their useless testicles high in the air with pride? Hell the botox queen can have them grafted on for the purpose.

          Requiring ID would at least present some barrier. I’d either have to buy a fake ID or steal someone’s ID.

          So try to pass a law requiring ID first and forcing people to carry it. See how far you get…

          Is there anything you don’t think is National trying to do evil?

          There are a pile of people who are on the special roll, mostly because there are arseholes ex’s with nasty habits. In my experience as a barman, most of those profess sentiments just like yours. They want to know who everyone is – just in case. Many of them were police. This is why there is an ever growing size of the “special” roll.

          What you’re asking for is for people to stand in a room and shout it out… It is hard enough to get people out to vote as it is. It is hard to even get them to put their name to roll because of the way ex-husbands, “private” detectives and debt collectors use it

          Fool. Think it through. This is a frigging small country and currently my guesstimate is that about 15%-20% of its population has someone after them. It just seems like really cool way for the National testicle graftees to get their jollies and more terms in office.

          BTW: National do the same things every time they are in office. They try to drop people off the roll, try to prevent people from voting, and massively under fund the electoral commission.

        • Tracey 13.3.4.2

          Can you outline the criteria for a returns officer at a booth requiring a statutory declaration?

        • If you want to require ID to vote, you better have a plan to ensure every single person over 18 is issued a voter ID without cost or significant barrier to any of them.

          Good luck. :P

        • You really don’t get the logic of voter supression?

          OK, let me put it this way:

          The National Party has a backlog of private polling done, which has established some pretty good demographics for who their supporters are, and how that’s changing- so they’ll divide voters into three categories.

          Category one is the voters who are very likely to support them. They want to encourage these people to vote.

          Category two are voters who are likely to be swing voters, or have a pretty even likelihood to support their government over the opposition. They won’t bother to actively target these people for suppression, but if they’re smart, they’ll be out to persuade them as much as possible.

          Category three are voters who are very unlikely to support them. Making speeches or advertising to these groups makes it unlikely to change their minds. These are the people the National Party, (or in principle any other large party) would have the motivation to stop voting. So they look at their demographics- and they can come to conclusions like:
          “Oh, our turnout only goes down when they general turnout is very high and it looks like we’ll lose. Focusing on lowering turnout in general is probably a good strategy for us.”
          or
          “Oh, our voters tend to be middle-aged and affluent. There aren’t many ways to subtly raise barriers to those voters, so if we go ahead and make it harder to vote, it’s likely to effect parties that rely on younger voters or older voters.”

          That’s in the New Zealand context. We’ve seen measures like these be very effective in the USA, with Republican legislatures implementing photo ID requirements to vote that allow firearms licences, (their natural constituents) but disallow student IDs (because students vote for Democrats) Now the National Party has to play things a bit more subtly here because Kiwis are very interested in fairness, but they can still do things like force you to say your name to vote. What if you have a speech impediment? Oh, you’re deaf? Too bad, you have to say your name correctly anyway. What if you’re a citizen who just turned 18, but you lived in a monocultural community that didn’t speak English? You ought to be able to vote, but if you can’t understand that someone is asking for your name, you might not be allowed to, even though we have a policy of supporting people to vote who speak or read none of our official languages.

          Even if National’s intent really is to secure the voting system, this is a dumb way to do it, and it’s not worth the cost to our democracy.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 13.4

      Thomas, having to say your name is apparently “reasonable”. It’s what happens when the racist Tory asshole decides that the pronunciation of the name doesn’t match the racist asshole expectations racist assholes feel entitled to make about the spelling.

      The law is designed by the National Party to give racist Tory assholes more grounds to hold the vote up. It’s the same playbook in the States. Getting all shocked about it makes you look duped or duplicitous.

      • Tracey 13.4.1

        duped? Surely not??!!?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 13.4.1.1

          Anyone can be taken in by glib presentation, especially people of lower intelligence.

          • Tracey 13.4.1.1.1

            I find it that the more widely read someone is, if they are reading WO and kiwiblog or listening to Hooten or key the more dupable they seem to be…

  14. bloodyhell 14

    There are literally thousands of kiwis who are not on the electoral role for many reasons.

    Police, Justice Dept, Military, Corrections staff etc. The most important to me are the many women who has escaped violent relationships with protection orders and are exempted from being on the Roll.

    These people are all entitled to vote and I would take a stab at guessing most if not all would not want their presence announced at a polling booth.

  15. Paul Campbell 15

    It seems obvious that we should all learn to sign our names, when we’re asked we should use one of NZ’s official languages and simply respond as requested

    • Tracey 15.1

      and if the listener doesn’t know our pronunciation so assumes we are trying to deceive, we should just accept that as part of the process?

      Paul, what are the criteria for someone to fit before they can be asked to sign the statutory declaration?

    • Tracey 15.2

      Imagine if the British had bothered to learn and speak Maori, we wouldn’t have any problems with the Treaty of Waitangi.

      • Hayden 15.2.1

        I think he’s talking about NZ Sign Language, i.e., imagine if everyone asked to state their name did so in sign.

        • Paul Campbell 15.2.1.1

          yes I was, I learned mine last night in 5 minutes

          But I have no problem with people using Te Reo too (or demanding that the question be put in Te Reo)

  16. Kahukowhai 16

    And we are supposed to believe that Any Political Party won’t be pushing self interest in these debates and how they perceive they might improve their own chances at an election.

    And that really means Any Political Party – Labour or National or anyone, are all looking for ways to make it easier to get votes. So if you really expect us to believe it is not about whichever party you believe in ‘s chances – we should not take you seriously.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1

      Bollocks. Assess the argument, not the person. There’s a difference between making it easier for people to vote (“to get votes”) and making it harder (to suppress votes).

      At the moment the National Party is on the wrong side of that difference. By an amazing coincidence they often find themselves there. People tend to notice such things and remark upon them.

  17. Tracey 17

    A thought-provoking article by Gordon Campbell about the refusal to allow Odd Future entry to NZ

    http://gordoncampbell.scoop.co.nz/2014/02/14/gordon-campbell-on-the-banning-of-odd-future/

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