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Economic crime

Written By: - Date published: 12:08 pm, February 13th, 2013 - 34 comments
Categories: benefits, class war, crime, law, scoundrels - Tags:

Yes, the Nat’s economic policies are a crime against common sense and the vast majority of the people. But currently in the news is the other kind of economic crime – white collar crime – fraud and tax evasion. We have a new report on the impact:

Economic crime costs NZ billions each year, Govt reveals

White collar frauds and economic crime costs the country billions of dollars each year, government officials have concluded.

Minister for the Serious Fraud Office Anne Tolley said many Ministries had been working for two years on a Cost of Economic Crime report that was due to be presented to cabinet soon.

Tolley, speaking at the inaugural Economic Crime Action Network meeting in Auckland yesterday, said: “Economic crime can range from pro forma invoicing schemes that drain the resources of small businesses and charities, to Ponzi schemes, to fraudulent finance companies that destroy the retirement savings of a generation.”

She said the report was unable to generate a firm methodology to precisely calculate the annual cost, but officials had concluded the cost was “likely to be in the region of many billion of dollars per year.”

Billions. Per. Year. (Similar to previous estimates of $1 to $6 Billion.) And where does National put its energies? Into chasing the comparatively insignificant problem of welfare fraud ($22 Million in a typical year). Where does the court system put its priorities? They like to jail welfare fraudsters more often than the (150 times more damaging) tax dodgers.

Our priorities as a country are completely screwed. If we put as much energy into cracking down on economic crime as we did chasing welfare cheats – we could afford a proper welfare system…

34 comments on “Economic crime”

  1. Tiresias 2

    “Where does the court system put its priorities? ”

    The Courts can only act on what is brought to them.

    ““Economic crime can range from pro forma invoicing schemes that drain the resources of small businesses and charities, to Ponzi schemes, to fraudulent finance companies that destroy the retirement savings of a generation.” – Tolley.

    None of these represent a direct loss to the Exchequor – or even the country. They’re merely a re-distribution of wealth from the worthy to the unworthy. On the other hand Welfare fraud is direct theft from the Exchequor – although that doesn’t cost “New Zealand” anything either.

    While I’m all in favour of cracking down on financial fraud as much as welfare fraud the only thing that can be said to cost “New Zealand” billions is tax avoidance as this represents income lost to the Exchequor.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      The Courts can only act on what is brought to them.

      But why do they jail someone for a few thousand dollars of benefit fraud while white-collar criminals who steal millions get community service?

      • Colonial Weka 2.1.1

        What do the sentencing guidelines say?

        • aerobubble 2.1.1.1

          More context please. A person eligible for a benefit may mislead to get more than their fair entitlement. They are then asked to repay the full amount include what they were entitled too plus tax (brought in by Labour to boost the cost of welfare and so beat up on them). So its unfair to say that people who screw themselves by defrauding the Exchequer of a small percentage of their entitlement and yet lose their full entitlement for the period of the fraud are actually costing the exchequer, in fact its a saving the exchequer who has a vested interest in create and catchin gthe fraud and lowering the obligation to the exchequer. Pushes the cost on to family of the fraudster (who pick up the slake), crime, and poverty (disease). So really in some cases its looks like a bookkeeping windfall but actually is a long term additional cost, even generational hole (and we haven’t even started on the cost of imprisoning the poor sap). I mean a person lies and to get a few extra dollars a week, and has pay back thousands (which courts then stretch out over their lifetime or wipe off), and some idiot neo-liberal penny count thinks its a win.

          Please. People are now arguing that the crime of benefit fraud is meaningless by implication, as a negative income for everyone essentially makes the fraud impossible to commit.

          So I laugh when I hear some National voting, ponsi investor who lost their shirt, who was worried about benefit fraud and let National and Labout ignore the white collar crime binge
          that is the hallmark of the last 30 years of western capitalism. Its a giant pyramid scheme,
          to get in you argue that all that matters are profits, if you got in early you walked away with countless millions, as everyone below you gave up wages, borrowed, and funneled their money into the financial system – without any extra wealth creation, just booking keeping bubble markets.

        • QoT 2.1.1.2

          Who wrote the sentencing guidelines?

  2. Rogue Trooper 3

    read about the high, actual “body count” implications of ponzi financial fraud, ala Madoff, the other day.; These frauds take livesfar less cleanly than “crimes of passion”.

  3. infused 4

    It’s say because they are very hard to crack and take huge amounts of time / resources.

    Macleans IT did a Phoenix last year (most probably, illegally) and the serious fraud office said they had no time to investigate.

    http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/news/maclean-computing-sells-assets-to-maclean-technology

    Whole thing stinks.

    • quartz 4.1

      Ha! The liquidator in that dodgy deal was Damien Grant. Classic.

    • fatty 4.2

      It’s say because they are very hard to crack and take huge amounts of time / resources.

      But if we are talking billions of dollars – surely the time & resources argument would mean that we can’t afford to ignore it?

  4. tc 5

    Oz learned that lesson in the 90’s after Skase/Bondy etc and recruited top talent, paid them, gave them sweeping powers and went after them hard. Ex WA premier Brian Bourke being a good example.

    Shonkey’s mob will never go after mates, Feeny’s paid to talk a good game with no players and a new rule book, as ineffective as the last one, the corporate crooks laugh at.

    The white collar crooks influence &/or are the rule makers via various groups and report writers so they’re always one step ahead, they can also afford the better resources to keep the authorities at bay.

    Trolley gets whelled out to perform for the crowd again.

  5. just saying 6

    Didn’t this government reduce resources available to the Serious Fraud Office?

    Must have been another example of reducing the costs for their mates, of doing business in NZ :-)

    Some of the statements made by the judicary when sentencing benefit fraudsters recently should have drawn the attention of the Human Rights Commission, (if we actually had such a watchdog, rather than the facade of one.) It is, in theory, unlawful to discrimate against people on the grounds of employment status. The sentences given to beneficiaries, compared to those given to big league fraudsters, provide further evidence of discrimination.

  6. I appear to have a theme going on today:

    “But what is liberty without wisdom and without virtue? It is the greatest of all possible evils; for it is folly, vice, and madness, without tuition or restraint. Those who know what virtuous liberty is, cannot bear to see it disgraced by incapable heads, on account of their having high-sounding words in their mouths.”
    ― Edmund Burke (1729-1779)

  7. Rogue Trooper 8

    at least it’s not burqa ;)
    anyway, from over at Hedge (junk bonds are piling up)
    http://www.zerohedge.com/contributed/2013-02-12/warning-eu-crisis-back-and-will-be-worsening-coming-weeks

    • RedLogix 8.1

      An interesting and “why am I not surprised” read there RT. The bedrock of any economic system, indeed of all human affairs, is trustworthiness. Without it everything grinds to a halt.

      This is also the reason why major economic crimes are downplayed and minimised … the establishment instinctively understands that these stories of white collar fraud and bank fraud undermine this essential trust … and that there is a tipping point (no-one knows exactly where) when the system collapses.

      And I wouldn’t discount the collusion of ordinary people in this either. Most people understand at some level that if the system collapses everything changes … and probably not in a good or comfortable way. So most people are quite willing to be outraged at some beneficiary diddling a few thousand, while remaining apathetic about billions looted by bankers.

      • Rogue Trooper 8.1.1

        your work is consistently outstanding Red (any feedback for a mutt like me?)

        • RedLogix 8.1.1.1

          RT … thanks. But I’m so humourless about it. Not my strong point; which is why it’s a team effort.

          And along the way I’ve been handed my arse by a few masters.

  8. johnm 9

    This shit sit now reflecting on ordinary kiwis who continue to vote for the key fantasy of wealth while ignoring the poverty of their brothers and sisters. The beginning of a shit society of alienation and inequality. Well done you kiwi fools. You want to fuck the key fantasy but’ll disappear soon enough you stupid fucks. :-(

    • Mary 9.1

      “The beginning of a shit society of alienation and inequality.”

      Maybe a bit further on now than merely the beginning but yes, what’s been going on for the last 30 years or so has alienated and increased inequality. The market will decide thinking that’s caused much of this ignores everything about humans – how we think, act, react, decide, make mistakes, care, love, value and so on. Ignoring this basic premise makes what Key et al are doing, as well as former Labour governments, of course, morally wrong. But I guess when greed’s involved there’s no room for morality or what’s right, regardless of the truest truth. It’s so interesting looking at Key’s eyes when he’s talking in front of a camera. He’s just got no idea about people, which I suppose may account for thow he comes across as just not caring.

      • xtasy 9.1.1

        Mary:

        “The market” is so often cited and quoted, in media, and certainly by government.

        But what does “the market” really mean. I any case, there is not, nor has there ever been a totally free and equal “global” market. It is all much talk about hypothetical and pseudo idealistic scenarios that never eventuated, nor will they ever do so.

        “Market” means anything, like a small market, a selected market, a larger market, a regional market, a town market, a trade related market, a social market, and then of course the “global market”.

        We get this “market” argument drummed down our throats day and night, as the final and total elixier of beneficial development, to make us all better off.

        In reality it is a farce, a slogan, an empty phrase in many cases, as few “markets” are real fair and free markets.

        NZ is part of a global market where it sold so many rights and restrictions, the other players have more clout and can demand what they want, while little NZ is having to bend and buckle all the time, to justify a trade relationship.

        It has become idiotic, but we have governments still tell us, we must do this, we must sell assets, land and lower workers rights, otherwise we will not survive as an economy. That is in a world hanging out for food, sound and clean environment, where millions of workers and entrepreneurs would love to come and migrate here.

        Tell us another story dumb Hone Key, you are not convincing. NZ will never starve or suffer, it will be in high demand even with fair and good wages and salaries, because too many other countries have been stuffed up, so many want to come her, no matter how expensive it is.

        Your argument is BS, John Key, same as your government, what NZ needs is a fair solution, so locals also get a fair chance and life, that is what Kiwis ask you and others for.

        And last not least, you run an oligopoly economy, where a few players suck us all dry, while we are ripped off with over above average world prices for consumer goods, food and housing. F that, thank you, JK!

  9. Afewknowthetruth 10

    Barclays rigging LIBOR

    HSBC laundering Mexican drug money.

    HSBC, Barclays, Lloyds, RBS selling fraudulent financial packages.

    Fraud at the top is the new norm.

    • pollywog 10.1

      Double Dipton is the new black…which is the same as the old black.

      Nzers need to aspire to being greedy and selfish. Fuck being middle class. It’s the predator class we should aspire to become.

  10. tracey 11

    when the courts or kangaroo tribunals get their chance… they let us down

    http://nzhpremiumcontent.blogspot.co.nz/2005/12/brian-rudman-cullens-jungle-law-antics.html?m=1

  11. tc 12

    We should add the billions this govt is about to rip off kiwis by selling the assets on the block.

  12. Afewknowthetruth 13

    Ned Kelly was right.

    That’s why they hanged him.

  13. xtasy 14

    White collar crime – trivial side issue

    Welfare “fraud” (usually overpayment due to failure to report change of circumstances on time) – SERIOUS!

    That is the equation, and it will not change. Tolley is a hypocrite, same as Key, going on about this stuff, she only talks about it, because her job requires her to show her face and say something.

    It is the international organisations that are more forceful and honest. They should actually conduct a major, independent, internationally staffed investigation in the corruption that involves the Key government here!

    They may come across some surprising results after all.

    Given deals like the convention centre to be built by Sky City Casino for a good return perk, the Hollywood deal for allowing movie companies here to get tax credits and favourable working conditions, the dodgy deal about refugees to be accepted from Australia, the dealings Mr joyless Joyce made re Mediaworks, the peculiar workings about how to assist Hollywood and the US agencies to prosecute outside of the law a Dotcom entrepreneur, the bizarre way the Southern China Airways deal was allowed with Sky City Casino (compromising immigration rules), the Crafar Farm deal, the other various “foreign investment” consents, and much, much more, I think NZ has a heck of a lot to answer to, but where is the bloody accountability?

    Key is not the PM I ever wanted, but sadly a majority of emotionally “drunk” public voters voted the great shownman in. That kind of event is usually the first warning sign for any society, where Transparency International starts taking a serious focus.

  14. BLiP 15

    .

    . . . Given deals like the convention centre to be built by Sky City Casino for a good return perk, the Hollywood deal for allowing movie companies here to get tax credits and favourable working conditions, the dodgy deal about refugees to be accepted from Australia, the dealings Mr joyless Joyce made re Mediaworks, the peculiar workings about how to assist Hollywood and the US agencies to prosecute outside of the law a Dotcom entrepreneur, the bizarre way the Southern China Airways deal was allowed with Sky City Casino (compromising immigration rules), the Crafar Farm deal, the other various “foreign investment” consents, and much, much more, I think NZ has a heck of a lot to answer to, but where is the bloody accountability? . . .

    Righteous rant, comrade, and you have, fer sure, picked up some of the headline issues that need closer inspection, and asked the right question. Thing is, there is no accountability. These days, being able to “game” the system and rort the punters is looked upon as being sharp business practise, carried out every day by John Key’s aspirational neophytes, complete with knowing winks, sly smiles and a firm “fuck you” to anyone who might complain about it. Get in while you can, is the rallying cry. Even our farmers have taken John Key’s message to heart and, in their haste to be ashpurashnul have tried their hand at the financial derivatives market. Of course, John Key was just delivering the naive into the hands of the venal.

    The aspiration message from John Key ignores the fact that he managed to accumulate $50 million without producing a single widget or millking a single cow. His first three years in office have resulted in the under-resourcing and under-mining all regulatory authorities to the point of stasis. Right now, its game on for every to come up with their own wangle and this latest report ain’t gonna change a thing.

  15. Afewknowthetruth 16

    By the way, THE ECONOMY, as presently constituted (looting of fossil fuel resources by corporations and converting them into CO2, thereby progressively destroying the habitability of the Earth) IS A CRIME against the next generation, who a decade from now will have to attempt to scratch a living on a resource=depleted and overheated planet.

    The economy is a crime and it is run by criminals.

  16. ChrisH 17

    Check out the theory of “control fraud” on Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Control_fraud. Foxes guarding the henhouse. One hopeful sign is that the IMF has appointed George Akerlof, an expert on what he calls “looting”: http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2011/06/people.htm

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      Yep, I learnt about the phenomena of Control Fraud by listening to William (Bill) Black online. He was a prosecutor during the S&L crisis of the 1990s.

  17. Red Rosa 18

    The NBR has some interesting comments on Dame Shipley and Mainzeal

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/jenny-shipley-denies-conflict-ch-135859

    Trading while insolvent?

    Conflict of interest?

    Sure as hell looks like both.

    And say what you like about Winnie (mostly justified of course!) he again seems to be onto it.

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    Occasionally erudite | 29-09
  • Hold fast to your Mana – Harawira
    Hone Harawira today called on the voters of Tai Tokerau to hold fast to their mana, and not be dictated to by those party leaders who have ganged together to tell them how to vote. “I call on our people...
    Mana | 18-09
  • Media Advisory – Interview availability
    This is to advise all media that Hone Harawira will be available in Auckland tomorrow, Friday the 19th of September from 7am to 4pm for interviews relating to his recent press releases. If you are interested in interviewing Mr Harawira on...
    Mana | 18-09
  • Labour stands on proud record on Suffrage Day
    Women have come a long way in the 121 years since New Zealand became the first country to give them the vote on September 19 1893, but there is still more to do, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Carol Beaumont says....
    Labour | 18-09
  • Polling Booths asked to treat Maori voters with respect
    “Polling booths without Maori roll voting papers, Maori people not being offered assistance to vote, people getting sent from Whangarei to Wellsford to vote, Maori people getting turned away from voting because they didn’t have their ‘easy vote’ card, Maori...
    Mana | 17-09
  • Aussie Liberals embroiled in Key campaign
    John Key needs to explain why Australia’s Liberal Party is interfering in New Zealand domestic politics and is encouraging Kiwi voters across the ditch to vote for National just days out from the election, Labour’s campaign spokesperson Annette King says....
    Labour | 17-09
  • The MANA Plan for Beneficiaries and Income in Waiariki
    Median Personal Income for Waiariki is $21,700. Over 13,000 Maori who live in Waiariki rely upon a form of government benefit including the Unemployment Benefit, Sickness Benefit, Domestic Purpose Benefit and the Invalids Benefit. “If you’re lucky enough to have...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Māori development crucial to New Zealand’s future
    Labour recognises the concern of Māori about child poverty and the rising costs of living, and in Government will make a real difference to the wellbeing of whānau and iwi, Labour’s Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. “As our Māori...
    Labour | 16-09
  • MAORI PARTY – DON’T COMPLAIN … WALK
    “If the Maori Party are serious about stopping government spying on NZ citizens then they should tell the Prime Minister to either stop doing it or they will walk away” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira, on...
    Mana | 16-09
  • JOHN KEY SUPPORTING LABOUR
    “There is something really sick about a National Party Prime Minister coming out in support of a Labour candidate” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira, after hearing that John Key is urging voters to back Labour in...
    Mana | 16-09
  • SHUT DOWN THIS GOVT NOT KAITI WINZ – Nikora
    “I’m going to make it as hard for you to get help as I can” is Paula Bennett’s message to the people of Kaiti  said MANA candidate Te Hāmua Nikora today in response to the news that National will close...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Winegums make for better polling – Harawira
    I wanted to laugh when I saw the Native Affairs poll the other night (Hone Harawira 38%, Kelvin Davis 37%) because it was almost the same as the one they did back in 2011”, said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau...
    Mana | 16-09
  • The Leadership of MTS Lied – Harawira
    “Normally I’m happy to tell people that I was right but when I received the news about the staff cuts at Maori Television, I had nothing but sympathy for the three Maori media leaders who are going to be made...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Privileges Complaint Laid against Prime Minister – Harawira
    MANA Movement Leader and Te Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira has today lodged a Privileges Complaint with the Speaker regarding the Prime Ministers denials in parliament that he knew anything about Kim Dotcom before 2012. “Information made public today appears...
    Mana | 15-09
  • Sharples’ new appointments are out of order
    The new appointments to the Waitangi Tribunal announced by Dr Pita Sharples this morning are completely out of order given the election is just five days away, says Labour's State Services spokesperson, Maryan Street. “This Government continues to show disdain...
    Labour | 15-09
  • MANA Movement Housing Policy
    “When families are living in cars, garages, cockroach-infested caravans and three families to a house then we have a housing crisis”, said MANA leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau, Hone Harawira. “When you have a housing crisis for low-income...
    Mana | 15-09
  • Bigger than the Foreshore and Seabed – Sykes
    “Over the past week I have received some disturbing information that has led myself and a number of Maori lawyers to conclude that this National - Maori Party - ACT and United Future Government are going to put an end to both...
    Mana | 14-09
  • MANA wants Te Reo Māori petition fulfilled
    Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau Annette Sykes, MANA candidate for Waiariki Te Hāmua Nikora, MANA candidate for Ikaroa Rāwhiti  “More than four decades have passed and the petition calling for Te Reo Māori in schools...
    Mana | 14-09
  • Primary focus on the critical issues
    A Labour Government will prioritise New Zealand’s agricultural sectors by recreating a Rural Affairs Minister and appointing a Primary Industry Council and a Chief Agricultural Adviser. Releasing Labour’s Primary Sector and Rural Affairs policies today, spokesperson Damien O’Connor says the...
    Labour | 12-09
  • Maori Television fears confirmed – Harawira
    ...
    Mana | 12-09
  • More ghost houses from National
    The Government’s desperate pre-election announcement of more ghost houses won’t fool Aucklanders wanting action on the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “These are ghost houses, to go with National’s ghost tax cut. Families cannot live in ghost...
    Labour | 12-09
  • National bows to union pressure over travel time
    National has reluctantly bowed to pressure from unions and adopted Labour’s fair and sensible policy to pay home support workers for the time they spend traveling between clients, Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “This decision is long overdue...
    Labour | 12-09
  • Party members and affiliates – the real losers in Labour’s leadership f...
    Hey, wanna do a back room deal that cuts the members and affiliates out? Cunliffe must be reeling. He has lost failed Ilam candidate James Dann. It must cut as deep as the loss of Steve Gibson. Apart from providing Claire...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, the election res...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, the election result...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • The rich get richer
    Nobel prize winner Paul Krugman highlights the growing inequality in this article in the New York Times. The left wing slogan that the “the rich get richer” is a fact of almost perverse power. The most recent period of expansion in the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • A brief word on reinvading Iraq
    So after telling the country before the election that NZ would not send forces to Iraq, lo and behold now he’s won the election with a full spectrum dominance political majority, Key is suddenly now looking to join the re-invasion of...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • A brief word on the importance of ACT, Maori Party and United Future to Nat...
    I’m a far right wing clown who attacks tax money going on anything collective, gimmie some cash and privilege.  One of the great successes of National has been to implement hard right policy but have it sold as moderate. For some NZers,...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Labour’s Angst
    Was Labour’s predictably low vote David Cunliffe’s fault? Was it policy? Was it something else that has aroused perceptions of electoral carnage? My analysis of the numbers suggests that, as uncertain voters made up their minds, there was a late...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Information wars: Gaza as “the last taboo”, the threat of mass surveill...
    “When the truth is replaced with silence” wrote the soviet dissident Yevgeni Yevtushenko, “the silence is a lie.” There has been a silence these past months full of noise, static and sound bites of those in power justifying their violence,...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • When the media say they covered Dirty Politics – did they?
    I was watching The Nation in the weekend, and watched the defenders of NZ media up against Minto telling him he was wrong in his claims of media bias and that the media covered Dirty Politics. I laughed. When the...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG – P Campbell – To the Left with love
    A week after the general election results I feel wrung out emotionally, having been through the disappointment, depression and anger of seeing  another right wing government elected overwhelmingly by winning support from the parts of NZ that will never benefit...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – I will be the new Labour Leader!
    One week after the election, while I was still waiting to be consulted about contributing to the review on what went wrong, what do you know? There is a leadership challenge. So instead of opting for a united, thoughtful and...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – A Prescient Post
    A very prescient pre-election post by Martyn Bradbury tells us why the Labour Party are at war now. “The NZ First-Labour Party attack strategy against Internet MANA better work” Despite Martyn Bradbury warning them this Right Wing strategy “Better Work”...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – W(h)ither Labour (!/?)
    There’s an old saying that success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan. Not so in the Labour Party, wherein soul-crushing defeat on a scale unseen since 1925 definitely has many fathers (and more than a few mothers and...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • At the end of the day…
    At the end of the day…...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Cynicism towards Key’s sudden desire to help children in poverty
    Cynicism towards Key’s sudden desire to help children in poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Internet MANA the election and the media
    I’ve been very critical of media reporting of Internet MANA during the election campaign and not surprised at the predictable response from representatives of the corporate media establishment. I wasn’t going to carry this further but was asked at the...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Rachel Jones – A superficial discourse analysis of a superfic...
    On Sunday there was a story about Paddy Gower and his detached retina in the Herald on Sunday. Really? I hear you ask. Really? Yes, really. Pam Corkery will have sprayed toast crumbs over her dressing gown. The reporter has become...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Terrorising Australia’s Muslim population
    We should be suspicious when 800 police conduct “terror” raids across Australia, but only one person is charged with a relevant terrorism offence (of which we know few details). We should be suspicious of the lurid tales of terrorists planning...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Another Labour leader has resigned and as per usual, the media lost its min...
    Another Labour leader has resigned and as per usual, the media lost its mind. I know the Labour party has its problems and I’m not even going to try to prescribe what should be done about it. But what I...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – Loyalty, Leadership and the Labour Party
    My first after the election and I can only say I’m feeling pretty sad.  It was a terrible result, and feels even more so knowing the number of volunteers hours, hard work & sacrifice made by so many people who...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • A Study in Party Stability
    . In terms of long-term stability, one party above stands above all others, with the exception of personality-driven groups such as NZ First and United Future. That party is the Greens. If the Labour Party wants to look elsewhere for...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • Cunliffe vs Robertson – Round 2
    Much to the disappointment of the NZ Herald and other right wing pundits who have decided they would like to appoint the next Labour leader, Cunliffe has surprised by deciding to damn the Caucus and appeal directly to the members...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • The tasks before the left and labour movement
    Anyone on the left would have been disappointed at the result of the election. There was an opportunity to win, but that got lost through a combination of factors. There were tactical decisions made by Labour, the Greens and Internet-Mana...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • From Fiji’s dictatorship to ‘democracy’ – the AUT student team on t...
    Mads Anneberg’s profile on Ricardo Morris and Repúblika. David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. THREE STUDENTS from AUT University covered Fiji’s historic “from dictatorship to democracy” general election this month. While the election arguably legitimised Voreqe Bainimarama’s so-called 2006...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • David Cunliffe Resigns As Labour Leader – Forces Robertson Out of the Bel...
    David Cunliffe has made a smart move, resigning as the leader of the Labour Party so as to force a leadership primary campaign. The move draws rival Grant Robertson out of the beltway to parts of the country where he...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • Deep thought vs Deep prejudice
    . . This letter to the editor appeared in The Listener, on 27 September, and caught my attention; . . Mr Dawson wrote in response to one of those typically unthinking comments which  condemned the poor for their “unbridled, reckless...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • The NZ National voters elected
    The NZ National voters elected...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – The post election postmortem is giving me post p...
    I feel the need to contribute to the discourse. This is a new experience for me. Not having an opinion, but expressing it on a popular forum in a public sphere. That’s why I have waited till now and put...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • A dictionary of education terms and definitions, brought to you by the let...
    Free to all TDB readers, please enjoy your very own cut-out-and-keep handy primer of terms that I predict you will need to know over the next three years… Achievement Gap (noun) Synonym for wealth gap. ACT (abstract noun) Intangible. Reported to exist in...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • A Mines Rescue brigadesman’s perspective on the Pike River Mine
    My husband and I lived in Greymouth in 2010, we were a coal mining family.  The day Pike River Mine blew up and the days following changed us profoundly, as it did for so many.  This is a Mines Rescue...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • The Left Triumphant! A Counterfactual History of the Last Twelve Months.
    DID IT REALLY HAVE TO END LIKE THIS? Reading through the commentary threads of the left-wing blogs it is impossible to not feel the anger; the sense of betrayal; the impression of having had something vital ripped from their grasp;...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • GUEST BLOG – Myles Thomas: The media won it!
    Make no mistake, John Key is a clever communicator – reasonable, authoritative and relaxed – but without the media he wouldn’t be PM. Depending on your viewpoint, New Zealand’s news media are either a bunch of Grey Lynn lefties or...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • Not Learning Lessons Past: the West’s Response to IS
    In an earlier posting Ukraine, United Kingdom, Ireland, Scotland, I noted that the first lesson of conflict learned by Robert McNamara was “understand your adversary”. If we have honourable objectives, our first and most important weapon is empathy. In the Vietnam War,...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Dr Jarrod Gilbert – Proof of David Farrar’s deception: my ...
    In the lead up to the election the Minister of Corrections Anne Tolley launched a gang policy. In order to justify the government’s approach she used gang figures that overstated the gang problem. Not by a little bit, but a...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • SPECIAL FEATURE: Stuart Nash – Red To The Rescue?
    SPECIAL FEATURE by Selwyn Manning. IF THE ELECTION RESULT which was dished out to Labour was not enough to incite an immediate leadership primary, then the caucus’ refusal to recognise David Cunliffe as the leader should cement it. Now is...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • Has the one party state crackdown begun already? Left wing NZ activist grou...
    Well known left wing activist social media group, ‘John Key Has Left Down NZ’ has been shut down on Facebook. At 11.40pm last night, Facebook, without any warning shut the group down siting a breach of terms of service as...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • Why Cunliffe should probably just let Nash & Robertson win
    We have to face some very unpalatable home truths. If you are a left wing political person, best you put your vote now to the Green Party, although you’ll have to do that all the while the Greens frantically tell you...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • The graceless win of Kelvin Davis
    The graceless win of Cameron Slater’s mate in the North, Kelvin Davis is difficult to swallow. Here Cameron Slater’s mate in the North is shitting on Hone Harawira by calling Hone all steam, no hangi as Kelvin rubs his ganged up win into...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • So Labour shifted too far to the left?
    So Labour shifted too far to the left?   Here’s the ill-judged view of Josie Pagani in the Pundit “Labour must change”: “At the last election I made myself a heretic when I wrote a column mentioning how unpopular the...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • Uncomplicated Loyalties: Why Cunliffe and the Labour Left Cannot Win
    THE STORY of David Cunliffe’s leadership of the Labour Party has been one of missed opportunities and unforced errors. That he was the only choice available to those who wanted to rid the Labour Party of its neoliberal cuckoos is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • So we can expect this now?
    So we can expect this now?...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Can Labour be saved? Why Whaleoil & National won and why we need a new ...
    As the shock of my optimism that NZers would recoil from the real John Key as exposed by Dirty Politics and mass surveillance duplicities wears off, I am surprised to find that the right in NZ are not content with...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Three more years (up shit creek and paddling hard)
    “If the future is not green, there is no future. If the future is not you, there is no future”. Emma Thompson’s stirring words to the climate marchers in London last Sunday are worth considering in the aftermath of the...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • One Party State
    In years to come this election will be seen as a historic turning point towards one party rule. I don`t mean this literally, absolute single party dictatorship is not in prospect. In the New Zealand context though, one party has...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • No More. The Left Falls.
    . We cannot be beaten down Because we are down already. We can only rise up and if you should beat us down, We will rise again. And again. And again… And when you tire of beating us down, We...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Hang tight everyone – Marama Davidson campaign reflection
    To the many people who had expressed their overwhelming support for me to enter Parliament this election – thank you. That the Greens held steady in a big loss for progressive politics is an achievement. We are hopeful that after...
    The Daily Blog | 22-09
  • New flag for NZ once Key signs TPPA
    New flag for NZ once Key signs TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 22-09
  • Reflecting on Elections Past
    There are a number of past elections that can give the left in New Zealand guidance and hope. Two major points though. Major parties require leaders who can bridge the political divide through strength of personality, vision of what it...
    The Daily Blog | 22-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – The Reptile Room
    I stress, at the outset, that I’ve got nothing against reptiles. Some of my best friends are reptiles. Some say I am one, but I’m not really. I just emulate that ability to sit, stationary for hours in court, eyes...
    The Daily Blog | 22-09
  • The success of right-wing counter messaging in the election
    One of the reasons National won the election was due to its success in counter messaging – and the way so many media commentators ran with th the right-wing spin. Here are some examples. Dirty Politics The original message was...
    The Daily Blog | 22-09
  • New Flag competition
    New Flag competition...
    The Daily Blog | 21-09
  • Submissions sought on herbicide for weed control in maize
    The Environmental Protection Authority is calling for submissions on a herbicide to improve broadleaf weed control in maize. The substance CADET contains 100g fluthiacet-methyl in the form of an emulsifiable concentrate and would contain a new active ingredient...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Jesse Mulligan Lives Below Poverty Line
    Jesse Mulligan Lives Below Poverty Line TV personality Jesse Mulligan will live on the equivalent of the extreme poverty line this October in order to raise awareness of sex trafficking. Mulligan will survive on $2.25 for his food from October...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Narratives from the 2014 Election: What do we learn?
    Narratives from the 2014 Election: What do we learn? - Sue Bradford, Russell Brown & Kirk Serpes discuss....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Voices from Oceania to speak out on climate change
    Voices from Oceania to speak out on climate change at launch of Pacific environment report...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Changes to Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre messages
    The Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management advises that while changes to Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre messages come into effect from today (Wednesday 1 October), the Ministry has been, and remains, the authoritative voice for tsunami...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Police remove banner at Statoil Offices in Wellington
    Oil Free Wellington hung a banner at 9:30 this morning at the Statoil office headquarters in Wellington as the Petroleum Summit opened in Auckland. The banner, which read 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil', has now been removed...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Mixed massages raise concerns
    Mixed massages raise concerns for Te Taumata Kaumatua Ngapuhi nui tonu, and Te Wakaminenga O nga Hapu Ngapuhi....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Union Slams Port Boss’s Pay Rise
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) says Lyttelton Port CEO Peter Davie’s 18% wage rise, taking his pay packet to $1.24m, is unjustified and inflammatory. ‘Lyttelton port has an appalling health and safety record, with three deaths on...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Prisons expert Ron Nikkel to speak in Auckland October 15
    Prison Fellowship NZ and JustSpeak have the privilege of hosting the former president of Prison Fellowship International, Ron Nikkel....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Hundreds of educators protest IES in Rotorua
    Four hundred educators from around the country took their opposition to the Government's controversial Investing in Educational Success policy to the public today....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Crime drops by 3.2 % in the 2013 / 2014 financial year
    Criminal offences dropped by 3.2 % in the last financial year according to figures released today through Statistics New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Narratives from the 2014 Election: what do we learn?
    I would like to invite you to a Fabians Reflection on "Dirty Politics, Dotcom and Labour’s worst result" with Colin James, Keith Ng, Stephanie Rodgers and Richard Harman. They will provide a debrief of analysis and lessons from the 2014...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Oil Free Wellington drops banner from Statoil headquarters
    Today members of Oil Free Wellington have targeted the offices of Statoil, by attaching a banner reading 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil' to the entrance of Vodafone on the Quay Midland Park, where Statoil's New Zealand office...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Media Statement from Karen Price
    “After a period of intense media attention and scrutiny of our family, I set up and used an anonymous Twitter account over the weekend and made a number of comments that I deeply regret....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Greenpeace disrupts Simon Bridges’ speech to oil industry
    Greenpeace activists have disrupted the opening speech by Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges at the Petroleum Summit in Auckland this morning....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • New Zealand Red Cross Responds to Drought in Tonga
    New Zealand Red Cross has sent an aid worker and two desalination units, to turn seawater into safe drinking water in the drought-hit Ha’apai islands of Tonga....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Can you ever tell if an email is real or forged?
    Computer industry veteran Brian Eardley-Wilmot warns that we should never take claims about stolen emails at face value....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • NZ MPs to attend the ASPG Annual Conference in Sydney
    New Zealand MPs to attend the Australasian Study of Parliament Group Annual Conference in Sydney...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Independent Maori seats still needed in Parliament
    “He’s got to be joking!” is the reaction of the president of the Maori Party, Rangimarie Naida Glavish to a call by a former Labour Minister of Maori Affairs, Dover Samuels, for debate by Maori on whether the Maori electorates...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Support for Democratic Rights in Hong Kong
    Rallies supporting the rights for universal suffrage will take place all over New Zealand today and tomorrow...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Trout Mass-Poisoned in New Zealand
    Trout Mass-Poisoned in New Zealand The Graf Boys New Zealand has some of the best trout fishing in the world! Every year thousands of international visitors wade pristine rivers in search of the freshwater game fish....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • New Zealand’s 2014 Hottest Vegetarians Crowned
    With winter gone things are heating up, and things just got even hotter with the crowning of New Zealand’s hottest vegetarians, says animal advocacy group SAFE. Marking World Vegetarian Day, 1st October, director James Napier Robertson and actor...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • A day to remember our duty to look after our senior citizens
    Human Rights Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue says International Day of the Older Person (1 October) is a United Nations day to celebrate our senior citizens, but also acknowledge the need to protect our kaumatua, or older people from abuse and...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Clear data needed on impact of benefit sanctions on children
    A lack of data on benefit sanctions means there is no way of knowing whether welfare reform is helping or harming children, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • The socialist alternative to austerity and war
    Public meeting: After the New Zealand election—the socialist alternative to austerity and war By Tom Peters 29 September 2014...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • New recruits to boost border protection
    Twenty six new recruits began an intensive nine-week training course in Auckland today that will see them graduate as Customs officers in time for the busy summer season....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Dwindling Mallard population shows up ‘pest’ myth
    The pro hunting organisation Fish & Game is researching the causes of the decline of the mallard duck population, upset at the prospect of fewer ducks to kill....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Support for Democratic Rights in Hong Kong
    New Zealanders in Auckland will gather on Wednesday to support the rights for universal suffrage in Hong Kong....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Campbell Live Exclusive Interview with David Cunliffe
    David Cunliffe resigned as leader of the Labour party on Saturday; but he still wants the top job....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Action needed on cycling safety
    “Clearly we aren't doing enough to protect the 1.5 million New Zealanders who ride bikes,” said Mr Morgan....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • World Rivers Day Passes Without A Whimper
    Sunday 28 September was World Rivers Day to celebrate clean, flowing rivers and caring about them. But a recreation-conservation advocacy the Council of Outdoor Recreation Associations of NZ (CORANZ) says the day seems to have slipped by without...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • The Kiwifruit Claim: Q&A
    1. Who is running The Kiwifruit Claim? The Kiwifruit Claim was founded by kiwifruit growers representing well in excess of 10% of the industry. 2. Why are you running this claim? The introduction of Psa into New Zealand had devastating...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Fed Farmers Need to Be Weaned
    The Taxpayers’ Union is calling on Federated Farmers to make a firm commitment to reject any future Government funding, after it was revealed that the lobby group had received over $200,000 of payments in recent years....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Children paying the price for charter school stitch up
    New Zealand children will be paying a high price for a one-seat deal between ACT and National, with an expansion of the beleaguered charter school system says education union NZEI Te Riu Roa....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Hikoi From North Reaches Oil Conference Tomorrow
    Today: The Hikoi opposing Statoil plans for seismic testing and deep sea oil drilling has marched through Dargaville and later be welcomed to Piringatahi Marae, West Harbour,Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Communities Still Count
    The efforts of many organisations to influence the electorate and the political parties they voted for in the lead up to the 2014 Election is over. The voting public has spoken and provided a strong endorsement to the centre-right National...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Eleven social enterprises get ready to take off
    Eleven teams from across the country will take part in the Launchpad, Ākina’s programme to get social enterprise ideas off the ground....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • An open letter to the Prime Minister
    in which Transparency International New Zealand asks the Prime Minister to ensure integrity underpins all work he leads "in the best interests of all New Zealanders"...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Paula Bennett ‘great work’ acknowledged – McVicar
    “Paula Bennett, as Minister of Social Development, has contributed significantly in lowering our crime rate and preventing further victims.” - McVicar...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Key’s Restraint in Propping up ACT Welcomed
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming the announcement that ACT MP David Seymour will not be appointed as a Minister....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Only Concession is from the Taxpayer
    Responding to the confidence and supply agreement reached between John Key and Peter Dunne’s United Future Party, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • A Tent for Any Tenant
    AUT students and Salvation Army Manukau Community Ministries team up to raise awareness, as South Auckland’s housing situation moves from crisis to collapse...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Cycle Safety Panel Draft Report Seeks Comments
    The Cycle Safety Panel Draft Report and Recommendations was published on 25th September 2014 and the panel are inviting comments. Lucinda Rees from NZ School Speeds, the organisation campaigning for consistent speed limits outside schools, is encouraged...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Labour’s Review – Terms of Reference Agreed
    Labour's Review - Terms of Reference Agreed Following a meeting of its ruling New Zealand Council yesterday, Labour has released the terms of reference for the comprehensive review initiated following its 2014 election result. The review will comprise three...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • The final countdown for Kiwi smokers
    There are just two days left until many smokers stubb out their cigarettes for the last time and embark on Stoptober – New Zealand’s first national quit-smoking month....
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • “In A Democracy People Win And People Lose”
    “In A Democracy People Win And People Lose” – Chris Hipkins Labour Senior Whip I would say to all of the caucus and all of the members let's actually hear the arguments from the people who want to be leader,...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Campaign to make Murder of Unborn ”Safe and Legal”
    The IPPF have launched an international campaign through its 161 affiliates including the New Zealand Family Planning Association [NZFPA] to make the murder of the unborn safe and legal and accepted as a human right. This is an acceleration of...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Grant Robertson Labour leader hopeful on TVNZ Q+A
    “Look I think what we need to be is relevant, clear and consistent with New Zealanders about the Labour Party's values,” said Labour leader hopeful Grant Robertson on TVNZ’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Labour Needs to Get House in Order Before Deciding Leader
    Ex Labour party leader and possible repeat contender David Shearer says the Labour Party is going about the post-election period in the wrong way....
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Hate merchants at it again with smear tactics
    “It’s disappointing to see the hate merchants at it again with yet another attempt to smear and silence a health professional who’s doing research they disagree with,” says Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
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