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Finlayson QC

Written By: - Date published: 11:27 am, December 14th, 2012 - 100 comments
Categories: corruption, politicans - Tags:

So Chris Finlayson, Attorney General, finally managed to get his Bill through last month re-allowing the antiquated title of Queen’s Counsel to be conferred on lawyers again.  The title is worth hundred of thousands in extra legal fees you can charge with your added prestige of having ‘taken silk’.

Yesterday he made his first appointment to the title.  It went to…

Chris Finlayson.

lprent: The press secretary for Chris Finlayson advises via e-mail:

…the Minister responsible for the Lawyers and Conveyancers Amendment Bill was the Justice Minister (although the Attorney did introduce the bill in 2009). The recommendation for the appointments to Queen’s Counsel of the Attorney-General and the Solicitor-General were made by the PM under the prerogative powers preserved by the Act, not by the Attorney-General.

Bunji: that’ll teach me to trust Newstalk ZB…

100 comments on “Finlayson QC”

  1. Rich 1

    In NZ, everyone knows everyone and clients will have a good idea whether a lawyer’s going to be any good for their work, whether they’re Mr Lord Justice Dr Sir Christopher Finlayson QC, KPMG, VC, DSO and Bar, or plain Mr Finlayson.

    So to make the big dollars, he’ll have to go overseas, and I’m not sure how well an NZ QC would do at the UK bar (would he even qualify?).

  2. vto 2

    ha ha how pathetic.

    The other words which QC stands for are far more appropriate for Finlayson.

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      What else does QC stand for?

    • vto-i am appalled that you use this inference, even if intended as light hearted (it is not) and feel that such comments should be immediately censored. It reflects badly on this blog while it remains in public view and is apparently tolerated.

      • vto 2.2.1

        Fair enough, it is certainly a heavy term. Funny thing is though that in use it in fact describes Finlayson and his actions in the political arena over time, and especially what he has done here. Not used or heard very many places these days so many people who don’t come across it may well take the wrong meaning from it. In its usual place it fits and in fact has little to do with abuse. More to describe someone’s actions and their relation to the relevant norms. Perhaps too much for here…

        • karol 2.2.1.1

          Say what?  vto, as a lesbian I really can’t fathom your attempted excuse for using that term.  I also totally disagree with Finlayson’s abuse of power.  It has nothing to do with sexuality.

          And I do find the term used above to be offensive. 

          • vto 2.2.1.1.1

            ok ok, point taken. Wrong side of the tracks. Will keep that shit to where it is known and its use accepted for what it is, along with all the other types of offensive shit that gets splattered at each and every thing and type and species. Nobody is immune in the badlands. But you know, I do not retract the fact that this alternative use of the letters describes Finlayson’s actions.

            Not a very merry christmas post was it – sorry for bringing down the tone

            And King Kong, do you know if South Park is real?

            • karol 2.2.1.1.1.1

              Nice. :(

              • vto

                Yeah, sorry. But you know, been thinking through the lunchtime wandering, the brain bouncing along the road behind, and I got to thinking that whenever this term is used it is never / rarely actually used in a homophobic abuse sense. The queer aspect relates to the unusuality of whatever is the subject of scorn, and this is of course a genuine and ancient definition for ‘queer’. It never relates to anything sexual. That is my experience of it. So I think this aspect of it has been misconstrued on here.

                The other half of the saying is of course used in the usual, and often good, sense that that word is used i.e. “He’s a good c…”. More in that sense. But it is well accepted that the word is one of the more reviled in the queens english.

                So, to call Finlayson such in these circumstances does fit. His actions in granting himself a status are the actions of a q c. The fact of his personal circumstances are immaterial, although given the surrounding lay of the land it was perhaps unwise to follow the brain trail down this rabbit hole …….

                And a bouquet for Finlayson, this matter aside… He impresses when he is on target. He is sharp certainly. Knowledgeable. Follows the conventions and rule of law. Seems to rest his actions on a broad base understanding and respect for our centuries-old system (which cannot be said for his colleagues in government).

                • King Kong

                  Thats hilarious. You are such a jizz stain.

                • Populuxe1

                  So basically if John Key uses the word “gay” out of context in a mildly pejorative way that was more buffoonery than anything, he’s a horrible homophobe, but if you use “queer” in a blatantly offensive way you expect to have it laughed off. Hmmm.

                • felixviper

                  For what it’s worth (probably not much) I’ve not known the term to be usually used in a homophobic sense either. It’s a hoary old saying and my experience of it is just as vto says, to mean a strange bastard.
                   
                  It’s not a particularly urban or urbane turn of phrase, and some of you sophisticated educated city dwellers might not be used to the kind of talk where words like “cunt” aren’t automatically assumed to be insulting.  
                   
                  So I do understand why people might find it offensive but I do also think it’s being taken the wrong way. vto has always seemed like a good cunt to me.

          • asp viper 2.2.1.1.2

            I presume you might be doubly offended?

          • Colonial Weka 2.2.1.1.3

            I’ve heard the term queer cunt used for a very long time and always assumed that queer was its old usage (as in odd). I would have to honestly say that it never occurred to me that it was being used homophobically given the places I heard it used. I know someone who uses the term queer to mean odd with no trace of homophobia (he’s quite old though), but that’s rare now. I think using the term queer cunt is inadvisable now because the main use of the word queer these days is for the not straight.

            • Populuxe1 2.2.1.1.3.1

              Calling a GLBT person a “queer cunt” is offensive. End. Of. Story.

              • vto

                I aint never heard anybody do that pop

                • Populuxe1

                  Findlayson is gay. This is public information. So yes you did.

                  • vto

                    Well yes I know that but it was used in the context described above.

                    But you concentrate a point – is abuse ladled out by the statement or by the receipt?

                    • Populuxe1

                      Give it up vto – unless you’ve lived in isolation in a cave for the last 70 years or so, you know perfectly well what “queer”‘s commonest usage is and how politically charged a term it is, even in the GLBT community. You should certainly know better than to use it as an insult, and it boggles the mind that you would use it of an openly gay man, especially in conjunction with a word deemed so offensive it’s one of the few you can’t use on  late night TV.

                      Just own that you did it deliberately, own that you fucked up and apologise properly. Maybe we’ll put it down to a similar lapse in judgement as Key’s “gay” brainfart. Stop trying to wriggle around the issue and you may come out of this with some dignity and respect intact. 

                    • vto

                      Look pop, read each of my posts on this. They are all up and down around here. No point in repeating myself to answer your points there. You have the wrong end of it. And certainly I have trodden on some more modern toes.

                      Put it like this – If some other non-gay cock had been made a QC in circumstances like this I would have called him a q c for the exact same reasons. It fits the actions. It is an old term.

                      The issue arises with my last sentence in my last post just above yours. And it is genuine question – what defines offence? The intent of the maker of the statement? Or the receipt in which the statement is taken?

                    • Colonial Weka

                      “And it is genuine question – what defines offence? The intent of the maker of the statement? Or the receipt in which the statement is taken?”
                       
                      Both those things, but also context (and lack of intent doesn’t equal absence of offense). Would you be surprised if someone called me a stupid cunt and I took that more personally (because I am a woman) than I might if I were a man? And do you understand that the reason I might be more upset is not only because I am a woman, but because women’s sexuality gets used against them all the time, esp that particuarly body part and word, often in incredibly damaging ways.
                       
                      Likewise, calling gay man a queer cunt has completely different implications than calling a straight man a queer cunt. You might not think or feel there is much difference, but that is beside the point.

                    • vto

                      Yes weka, I do see that. Sometimes maybe a D9 isn’t the best machine for the job

                  • Sosoo

                    It was a pun. How dense are you?

                • you did vto but I expect you’ll run around with your tail on fire for a while yet

              • Colonial Weka

                Agreed Populuxe. Context is everything.

              • Richard McGrath

                So a GLBT can never be an odd and silly person?

                • McFliper

                  Indeed they can.
                     
                  But one should be clear that it’s what one means, or one might be mistaken for a passive-aggressive moron who throws bigoted abuse and hides behind alternative definitions when called on it. And “silly or odd” seems to do the job quite adequately.

        • King Kong 2.2.1.2

          Dude, there is no way you can invoke the ground breaking case of the Southpark City Council vs Harley Davidson Riders of America where it was found that the word “fag” had evolved from being a derogatory term for a gay to an insult for noisy, attention seeking, motocycle riding douchebags.

          There is no way in the world that being called a queer c**t is anything other than a homophobic insult.

          • Kevin Welsh 2.2.1.2.1

            There is no way in the world that being called a queer c**t is anything other than a homophobic insult.

            Bollocks.

            • karol 2.2.1.2.1.1

              Really? If lesbian and gay people tell you they find it offensive, you say they are wrong?

              And I find it extremely offensive.   

              • asp viper

                I find it more stupid than offensive but hey…………..

              • Colonial Weka

                Karol, as I said above, I’ve known that term to be used without reference to queerness in its modern sense. The people I am thinking of probably didn’t even know that queer meant gay when I was younger, it simply meant odd. I can also understand why you would find it extremely offensive. It’s one of those transitions of language I think.

                • karol

                  When I was a child we used to use the term “queer” as a kind of term of friendly abuse.  We didn’t really understand why our parents didn’t like it.  

                  By the time I was a teenager, coming to terms with my sexuality, it was a pretty widely used homophobic term for homosexuals.  Since then the term has been reclaimed and used positively by LGBTI people.

                  Online etymology dictionaries date the use of the term to refer to homosexual as beginning around the 1920s or 30s.

                  But using the “c” word with it, and applying it to a known gay man, I don’t know how it could be seen as anything but homophobic.

                  The “c” word is one I rarely hear in my daily life, and the people I am closest to never used it as a swear word.  I tend to associate it as being used in fairly masculine contexts.

                   

                  • Soap

                    The original poster was making a mildly witty pun. as I read it, it was intended to get at CF in respect of being odd, not gay – the gay use being required to make the pun work. 

                  • Colonial Weka

                    You are right Karol, and my apologies, I was talking about the historic use of the phrase, not how it got brought up in this thread.
                     
                    I’m still fairly sure that the word queer was being used to mean odd when I was younger, but we may have grown up in different places and times. It wasn’t a word used in the main part of my life in either sense of it. Nor was cunt used. In my middle class background cunt would be the most offensive thing you could call someone. In latter years I’ve had to acclimatise myself to hearing it used regularly without the heavy association to it. Now I listen to see if it is being used as a weapon of misogyny or just another swear word. Mostly it’s the latter.
                     
                     

                    • Populuxe1

                      I mean, seriously, do you think it acceptable to refer to shoddy workmanship as a “Maori job”? People used to say that too.

                    • Colonial Weka

                      Were you talking to me? You’ll have to explain the comparison, because I don’t get it what you are comparing to.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Sorry, no – I was agreeing with you. I meant “you” rhetorically.

                    • karol

                      Actually two words in combination can be more offensive than either word used alone or combined with other words.  I don’t object to everyday uses of the term “queer” as obviously meaning odd.  Nor do I usually object to the “c” word, though it’s not one I use as a term of abuse.

                      But the words in combination these days, and applied to a gay man do take on a homophobic meaning.

                      Similarly, the words “black” and “bastard” in many sentences are not offensive. But calling a black person a “black bstrd” is considered by many people, especially when I lived in London, to be very offensive.

                    • Lanthanide

                      I commented on here that Key was a cunt for saying a shirt was “gay” and offered the (obviously strained) explanation that he meant “weird”. IMO that was justified.

                • Populuxe1

                  Well gosh, look out of the cave mouth and notice it’s the twenty-first century. Women have the vote and Maori are allowed into pubs. Things change. Deal with it.

              • Soap

                Not all do. These sorts of arguments go nowhere. 

              • Sweetd

                While I agree in this instance that the term queer c##t is offensive as I took it at the literal meaning not knowing of others in use in legal circles, I take offence at the attitude that just cause you are lesbian or gay you ‘own’ the word and thus define whether it is offensive or not.

                Just like the word Gay, there are other meanings to the word as Key demostrated, and sure as night follows day, someone will take offence.

                • karol

                  Of course.  And homophobia doesn’t really exist.  Those of us who have been on the receiving end of it should just accept that some het people don’t feel offended by homophobia.  Nothing to see here: ie when many people feel comfortable using words in a way many LGBT find offensive…. they’re just being silly.

                  And the “n” word really just means black.  So why should an African American take offence if an Caucasian person used it as a term of abuse against another African American man?

                  • Sosoo

                    You’re deliberately misunderstanding what the poster said in order to further your own agenda. 

                    • karol

                      Oh.  My agenda?  And what is that?

                      PS: Disagreeing with someone, is not the same as “deliberately misunderstanding them”.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Um, no. Karol was trying to explain why it’s so fucking offensive and shouldn’t used so casually – especially here. Go pedal your own agenda elsewhere thanks.

                    • Colonial Weka

                      It’s pretty clear that vto made a joke about Finlayson, a gay man, being a queer cunt, and that he was playing on the word queer. Irrespective of the fact that queer cunt may have historical use that isn’t homophobic, you can’t call a gay man a queer cunt not expect that to be unoffensive.
                       
                      As for who owns words, ‘queer’ was a pejorative and abusive word (and still is), and the queer communities reclaimed it. So yeah those communities have some claim over the word that others don’t. In the same way that as a woman I will challenge someone who use the term cunt as a way of putting women down.

              • Populuxe1

                I’m a “queer cunt” and I find it offensive.

            • King Kong 2.2.1.2.1.2

              I applaud your concise, insightful and well reasoned rebuttal

            • JonL 2.2.1.2.1.3

              “Bollocks”

              Quite agree – I’ve heard the expression used for 60 yrs and it does not have homophobic overtones – but – people will put interpretations to it according to their own perceptions, so……what do you do…….?
              Not use it I guess!
              Language bullies abound all over…….

              • King Kong

                My father, on occasion, would use the phrase “nigger in the woodpile” which I dare say was completely socially acceptable untill not that long ago (relatively). He doesn’t use it anymore.

                Damn those language bullies.

              • Populuxe1

                It might not have had “homophobic overtones” back before the asteroid hit and killed all the dinosaurs (except you and the tuatara, apparently) but it clearly does now. 

                Just in case you were wondering, it is also now offensive to use expressions like “Nigger in the woodpile” as well. Keep up, there’s a chap.

                • vto

                  What about “honky”? You know, like “fucking honky”.

                  • Populuxe1

                    Well now you’re just being pathetic, vto – but personally I find being called a honky offensive. 
                    Do you like it you red-necked slave-owning share-cropping pasty-arsed land-stealing, Maori-raping fucking honky? Now let that roll around your mind for a bit before putting it into context.

                  • Neoleftie

                    Jeeves weeped do we need adiscourse on flithy language , are we children….

            • QoT 2.2.1.2.1.4

              LOL, it’s funny because female genitals are gross, lol!

              • karol

                Hence the reason it’s a word I don’t use as an insult.  OTOH, it’s a strange thing that English uses words for male genitalia as well to insult people.  Strange to use such words to refer to people.

      • marty mars 2.2.2

        It reflects badly on vto not the blog IMO Dave but i agree the inference is totally uncalled for and quite yucky.

  3. Sweetd 3

    So, when Labour dropped Queens Council in favour of Senior Council did lawyers lose hundreds and thousands of dollars in extra legal fees?

  4. Tom Gould 4

    It’s a Tory thing. Muldoon knighted himself. It’s what they do.

    • Colonic Wiper 4.1

      Really , Cullen is quite keen on the idea as well from what I recall.

      • Tom Gould 4.1.1

        Cullen didn’t knight himself. Muldoon was PM when he ‘left the cabinet room’ while the decision was made, just like Findlayson I guess with the QC thing. Cullen was a private citizen when knighted, and it was by the opposing party cabinet.

        • KhandallaMan-an Absolutely Fabulous QC & Viper 4.1.1.1

          Michael Cullen disappointed many many admirers when he accepted the silly gong.  Whenever I see a reference to him I can’t help saying: you silly silly man.
          IMO, the title sh*t grates with where Labour came from and what Labour should be about.

    • quite correct TomG .What ever pleasure do they get from,some past Pommy title. My grandmother who was a stickler for good manners always said that the most important title was lady and gentleman in its true meaning. This government will hand out many titles to its mates .How long will Key wait because nothing is more certain than Sir John Key . which shows just what a farce the whole thing is.

  5. King Kong 5

    If Finlayson was in it for the dough then I doubt he would have left Bell Gully, where he was earning at least 4 times what he does now, to become an MP.

    • Ed 5.1

      So he became Attorney-General to give himself the title of Q.C.?

      • fender Viper 5.1.1

        The whole NActUF Govt is QC

        Quantitatively Corrupt………IMO

      • Arkonaut 5.1.2

        Um no Ed. If you remember it was his imminent departure from the legal profession into politics that was then non-lawyer Attorney-General Michael Cullen’s excuse, against official advice, to deny him a QC eight years ago.

    • tc 5.2

      It’s about the power KK, and the ability to build up so much credit with mates in the ‘favour/you owe me’ bank.

      The money will always be there for the boys club members they crave the pleasure only ruling the serfs gives.

  6. Cato 6

    I am sure this is what happened. Christopher Finlayson, in his pre-political days as an accomplished barrister with 9 appearances before the Judicial Branch of the Privy Council, sat down with his financial planner in 2004.

    Financial planner: “Gee Chris, you’re doing pretty well for yourself. Here’s what you want to do to take it to the next level. Next year, leave your chambers and abandon private practice to become a backbench list MP. Then work your way up to Attorney-General, arrange to have the law changed to restore the status of Queens Counsel. This will only work if you can get the government to restore honours generally, however, so you might need to bring back knighthoods as well.

    What you need to do then is get the Law Society and the Bar Society to recommend that the status be conferred upon you and then the last thing you need to fix up is for the CJ of the Supreme Court to approve the appointment.

    You can then quit your political career and return to private practice. You can then charge $950/hr instead of $750/hr and at that point, you should be set.”

    Get a grip.

  7. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 7

    Obviously if you’re prominent you have to be eminent or vice versa.

  8. aerobubble 8

    Key didn’t need to beat up the union movement to get the Hobbit film, he just wanted to blame someone for spending tax payer money. Globally movie goers have less money, are worried about prospects, and look to their unions as a social security. So it was unfathomable that Key would undermine the brand saleability of the Hobbit.

    Now Key’s government is attacking a highly respectable Judge in order to not pay compensation, and really do you think high caliber lawyers will be lining up to get named a QC. It reminds
    me of the SCOTUS when they declared for Bush against Gore, and Bush had nobody to replace for the next four years. Who would step down with the obvious conflict of interest observation.

    Because the law isn’t just the letter but the appearance as well. It would be funny if he is also the last QC.

    • karol 8.1

      In the mean time, what does Finlayson’s QC status, enable him to do on behalf of the Key government?

      • ColonialPete 8.1.1

        It’s pointless. It serves as a honour amongst barristers and as recognition of a senior and learned position in the profession. He can wear silk and lace at court rather than just the regular gown.

        • rosy viper 8.1.1.1

          hmmm I wonder if that means he’s intending to take up the silk sometime soon? Is he going to do a Simon Power and ditch the Nacts?

    • Cato 8.2

      Just to clarify: your prediction is that the Hobbit will suffer at the global box office because global movie goers will, out of sympathy with the NZ branch of Actors Equity, really frown upon the deal the Prime Minister made with Warner Brothers to have them made here?

      • King Kong 8.2.1

        I know that alot of people refused to watch “Retun of the Jedi” because the midgets playing the ewoks didn’t get their own individual dressing rooms.

      • aerobubble 8.2.2

        No, I’m saying Key’s own branding needs to be anti-union took precedence over the needs of the Hobbit movie brand.

        Anyway, just for the record, what you are saying is that thousands of workers in the movie industry have foregone union protections to keep work in NZ, and Key is muscling in and
        stealing off with their decision, and turning it into advertizing for his brand.

        Sorry, but I don’t buy this crap, first off I don’t buy that the Hobbit would not have been made here had the unions won, Key would have gotten out the cheque book. The tax payers paid.

        So I thank tax payers, I thank workers who gave up union affiliation, but Key is just gormless to think union bashing in the height of a ongoing global depression is considered and right.

        The reasons we don’t have the deprivation of the first Great depression is because of welfare,
        because of all the progress in innovation over the intervening period, otherwise it would be
        far worse consider how systemic and implicit are the debt to people, to nations, to the planet, are.

  9. The Al1en 9

    Kin ‘el, some of you crack me up.

    Funniest thing of all is no-one’s objecting to Finlayson being called a c*nt.

    • terryg viper 9.1

      I spotted that too Al1en, although Colonial Weka obliquely objected to it.

      And I’m explicitly objecting to it. Irrespective of converting it to a homophobic slur with the pejorative “queer”, cunt is about as sexist & misogynistic as it gets. and before anyone craps on about “nowadays its just an insult” it is, first and foremost, a crude term for vagina (having its roots in proto-germanic). the reason its an insult? misogyny, pure and simple.

      tsk tsk tsk VTO.

      • Populuxe1 9.1.1

        Actually the roots of the c-world lie with a Hindu fertility goddess Cunda. Finlayson isn’t a cunt because a cunt is a wonderful, useful organ that brings life into the world and enjoyment for many.

  10. ak 10

    Gotta admit but, he’s at least a weird cu….nundrum. Catholic in a party that relentlessly smashes the poor and vulnerable; openly gay qu… ixotic champion of treaty settlements after applauding the deliberate Brash racism that is the founding bedrock of modern National; voted against gay marriage. QC. Indeedy, deedy do.

  11. the pigman 11

    This may stem from a misapprehension, but it was my understanding that one of the selling points of the SC title when it was introduced was that it was going to be able to be conferred on lawyers in the public sector, partners in law firms and not just barristers sole. Until then, as I recall, it was only barristers sole that could be conferred with the QC title.

    Did they not roll back that change? Does Finlayson not feel it a little taboo that he is conferring this status while still Attorney-General? Seems like a bad look to me.

  12. Populuxe1 12

    I see vto hasn’t “manned” up yet

  13. SPC 13

    Has Tamihere beeen invited to offer his perpective on the re-instatement of the title QC?

  14. Dv 14

    DEAR HARRY
    Thank for the offer.
    We would like to borrow 5 billion to get us through Xmas.

    Yours in anticipation

    J Key

    [lprent: :) Spam creeping through damnit. ]

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    This is a guest post by reader Frith Stalker Dear AT Hop I have used Auckland buses for 30 years I am very smart, very pedantic, very polite and very Rule Abiding I am your perfect customer. I always thank...
    Transport Blog
  • Staff deserve right to use te reo Māori
    Tertiary Update Vol 17 No 41 Student’s at most tertiary institutions have the right to use te reo Māori as provided for and protected in their institution’s policies and practices, but staff do not always have that same right. TEU’s...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Creationist ‘audits’ science museum
    Imagine you are 10 years old and your crazy aunt is taking you out for a treat. A crazy aunt can be fun. Problem is this aunt is also a creationist and she is taking you to the local natural history museum....
    Open Parachute
  • Government digs deeper into $10m fraud
    The government has uncovered nearly $10 million in misappropriated tertiary funding and is expanding its investigations into other institutions around the country. Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce told the New Zealand Herald the Tertiary Education Commission is planning 12 more...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Unleashing hell
    There's a great scene in the first season of the British political comedy The Thick Of It. The fictional PM's office is, in the parlance of our times, in the shit. And their response is to try and utterly confuse...
    Polity
  • 4 percent cut to per student funding
    Tuition funding per student has fallen $800 or 4 percent since 2008 according to data compiled by the Parliamentary Library. The Green Party’s new tertiary education spokesperson Gareth Hughes requested the information and shared it with TEU. It shows that...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Otago cutbacks mooted to fund building
    Otago University is considering making significant cuts in 2016 to fund its $600 million building programme according to the Otago Daily Times. The university’s chief financial officer Sharon van Turnhout told the paper this could include job cuts. ”As staff...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • EBS Christmas Newsletter
    Welcome to our EBS Christmas newsletter, we hope that the end of the term is starting to wind down now and that you are looking forward to a long summer break! Our union bargaining power enables us to offer you...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • The problems of measuring water quality
    Professor Gary Jones from Canberra how is the keynote speaker at the 2014 NZ River Awards tonight. The following podcast is Gary speaking to Radio NZ’s Kathryn Ryan about the vexing questions of water quality and quantity.  ...
    Gareth’s World
  • Collins cleared; Slater lied
    On the same day as the Cheryl Gwynn report was released, we also got the release Justice Chisholm’s report into Judith Collins and the allegations that she undermined former-SFO head Adam Feeley. The report was ordered after the release of...
    Occasionally erudite
  • Gordon Campbell on government arrogance, Ferguson, and Police pursuits
    As anyone who’s ever encountered him around Parliament will verify, Chris Finlayson’s arrogance is matched only by his sense of self-esteem. On RNZ this morning though, he exceeded himself on both counts. Right now, National is ramming anti-terrorism measures through...
    Gordon Campbell
  • Hard News: The twilight state of the Psychoactive Substances Act
    Even as it was making its way to the statutes,
 New Zealand’s Psychoactive Substances Bill was the talk
 of the drug reform world. It was seen as a bold, visionary bid to deal with the proliferation of new drugs that...
    Public Address
  • John Key implodes over the Gwyn report
    The Cheryl Gwyn report into the release of SIS information relating to whether Phil Goff was or wasn’t briefed about the Israeli spy saga  was released on Tuesday. It makes for compelling reading as it investigates whether Goff lied, whether then-head...
    Occasionally erudite
  • NZSIS: Mandated abuse of power?
    By now you would have heard about the report on the NZSIS and its dealings with the OIA and the PM’s office. This report has been talked to death in the media so I won’t rehash the aspects that are already...
    On the Left
  • Neetflux: Key’s erasers
    ...
    On the Left
  • AT Beating Patronage Targets
    Auckland’s public transport patronage has been on a tear as of late and patronage is not only at its highest point in over 50 years but is currently up 7% on the same time last year. Included in that figure...
    Transport Blog
  • 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #48A
    Air pollution costs Britain £10bn a year, report shows Britain left 'exposed' to more floods and heatwaves Central American civil society calls for protection of local agriculture Climate change is not just about science Climate change will slow China's progress...
    Skeptical Science
  • Sunday burnouts in Christchurch: electric motorsport comes to NZ
    New Zealand is going to get its first taste of electric motorsport this Sunday, when the Mike Pero Motorsport Park at Ruapuna near Christchurch is hosting EVolocity, an amazing line-up of electric racing machines and their creators — including the...
    Hot Topic
  • The very odd Slightly Left of Centre
    There’s a new voice in the blogosphere. Josh Forman, the author of SlightlyLeftofCentre: 27 years old, from the left, and on a mission to reclaim the centre left from the loopy extremists from the far left who have hijacked the...
    DimPost
  • Submission guide: Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    I've just completed my submission on John Key's Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. In the past I've posted my submissions, but that has tended to lead to a bunch of people copy-pasting them, which has in turn reduced their impact...
    No Right Turn
  • Submission guide: Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    I've just completed my submission on John Key's Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. In the past I've posted my submissions, but that has tended to lead to a bunch of people copy-pasting them, which has in turn reduced their impact...
    No Right Turn
  • Support bill changes to keep students safe
    26 November 2014    The government has the opportunity to prevent major teacher opposition to the proposed new teachers council by supporting changes to the Education Amendment Bill (2). PPTA president Angela Roberts said one of the biggest risks of the...
    PPTA
  • Neetflux: Dirty laundry
    ...
    On the Left
  • Neetflux: Dirty laundry
    ...
    On the Left
  • This takes the cake
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security is now threatening John Key's victim with prosecution:As the Inspector-General stated at the release of the report yesterday morning, she is examining what steps to take over the early disclosure of information from the...
    No Right Turn
  • This takes the cake
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security is now threatening John Key's victim with prosecution:As the Inspector-General stated at the release of the report yesterday morning, she is examining what steps to take over the early disclosure of information from the...
    No Right Turn
  • World News Brief, Wednesday November 26
    Top of the AgendaIran to Access $700 Million Monthly During Talks Extension...
    Pundit
  • “Cut the crap” – quick analysis
    Here's the video of Andrew Little's question in the House today. Some quick thoughts: I was really interested that National's strategy team has already decided it has to deploy Tim McIndoe to break up the flow of Andrew Little's questioning....
    Polity
  • A statement from John Key
    Apologise? What for? I’m not sorry for anything. I have done nothing wrong. It’s Phil Goff who should be apologising. It’s Phil Goff who should resign....
    Imperator Fish
  • Submit!
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade committee has called for submissions on the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. Submissions can be made via the online form and are due by Thursday, 27 November 2014. Yes, that's right. An important bill...
    No Right Turn
  • Submit!
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade committee has called for submissions on the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. Submissions can be made via the online form and are due by Thursday, 27 November 2014. Yes, that's right. An important bill...
    No Right Turn
  • On the uncanny resemblance between John Key and Sergeant Schultz
    In the 30-odd years that Judy and I have been providing media advice and training to prime ministers, prostitutes and pretty well every profession in-between, our teaching mantra has remained the same: “Be straightforward, tell the truth, admit your mistakes”....
    Brian Edwards
  • Making their own terrorists
    Last year, two men murdered a British soldier in the middle of a London street. Now, the UK's Intelligence and Security Committee has found that MI6 may have directly contributed to one of the killers' radicalisation:The British government may have...
    No Right Turn
  • Making their own terrorists
    Last year, two men murdered a British soldier in the middle of a London street. Now, the UK's Intelligence and Security Committee has found that MI6 may have directly contributed to one of the killers' radicalisation:The British government may have...
    No Right Turn
  • Bold response required to Blueprint
    The Government must give urgent consideration to recommendations in The People’s Blueprint if it is serious about tackling New Zealand’s deplorable record of child abuse and domestic violence, Labour’s Justice and Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“The ‘one family, one judge’...
    Labour
  • Private prisons poaching in state jails
    The Corrections Department-sanctioned poaching of public prison officers for the new private prison at Wiri has to stop, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “It is unacceptable that prison staff are being trained by Corrections and then being poached by...
    Labour
  • Climate report- a must read for all New Zealanders
    A strong scientific analysis of rising sea levels in New Zealand by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment makes climate change the number one issue for our city planners, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods.  “Dr Jan Wright’s report...
    Labour
  • Exports drop puts more pressure on surplus
    A 5 per cent fall in exports shows National’s reputation for economic management is taking a hit and even puts its golden surplus target at risk, say Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson and Exports Growth spokesperson David Parker. “Bill English’s...
    Labour
  • Fourth housing report confirms failure
    The Fourth Auckland Housing Accord monitoring report shows the Accord has failed to make a dent in the city's housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. "The report says consents for only 354 dwellings were approved in the special...
    Labour
  • Fourth housing report confirms failure
    The Fourth Auckland Housing Accord monitoring report shows the Accord has failed to make a dent in the city's housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. "The report says consents for only 354 dwellings were approved in the special...
    Labour
  • Ministers all over the place on Smith passport
     Ministers responsible for the Phillip Smith debacle are at  odds over the passport he used to escape, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “It  beggars belief that Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne says the passport issued to Smith, under his...
    Labour
  • Ministers all over the place on Smith passport
     Ministers responsible for the Phillip Smith debacle are at  odds over the passport he used to escape, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “It  beggars belief that Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne says the passport issued to Smith, under his...
    Labour
  • Green Party Co-leader Russel Norman’s speech – Rod Donald Memorial Lect...
    It's been nine years since Rod's tragic death. I'd like to start out by talking about what Rod achieved. Then I want to talk about the things that I think he might want us to achieve in his absence. We...
    Greens
  • Hard road ahead for thousands more Kiwi kids
    News that there will be 8000 more students in low decile schools next year reinforces the absolute failure of the National Government’s economic approach, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The gap between the haves and the have-nots is increasing....
    Labour
  • Hard road ahead for thousands more Kiwi kids
    News that there will be 8000 more students in low decile schools next year reinforces the absolute failure of the National Government’s economic approach, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The gap between the haves and the have-nots is increasing....
    Labour
  • Free your voices
    Last week Victoria University of Wellington lecturer’s Dr. Sandra Grey and Dr. Charles Sedgwick released some figures from the 2013/14 update of the 2008/9 survey of the community and voluntary sector. Their research question was: ‘How is democracy – as...
    Greens
  • The facts of power price rises
    Everyone knows power prices are increasing and it feels like it is eating more and more of their weekly pay check. This morning I released census data showing this common feeling is in fact borne in the data. The data...
    Greens
  • Slavery was cheap too…Pay equity fight back to court
    Today the NZ Aged Care Association announced they will appeal the decisions of the Employment Court and Court of Appeal in favour of Kristine Bartlett, to the Supreme Court. They say they have no choice but to appeal because many...
    Greens
  • Why Pakeha are so offended by John Key’s idea of a peaceful settlement
    The statements by the Prime Minister on the Waitangi Tribunal ruling that Maori never ceded sovereignty in 1840 are enough to make any student of history choke. First was the denial that the ruling means anything significant. And then there...
    Greens
  • Restoration of the Christchurch Arts Centre well underway
    It was inspiring to be shown some of the major restoration and rebuilding work underway at the Christchurch Arts Centre recently. With 22 of 23 Arts Centre buildings damaged by the earthquakes, this is one of the largest heritage restoration...
    Greens
  • Key’s vile smear machine questions left unanswered
    The report into Judith Collins’ involvement in undermining the former Serious Fraud Office boss leaves major questions unanswered about the smear machine run out of John Key’s office, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “This report has deliberately narrow terms of...
    Labour
  • Key’s vile smear machine questions left unanswered
    The report into Judith Collins’ involvement in undermining the former Serious Fraud Office boss leaves major questions unanswered about the smear machine run out of John Key’s office, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “This report has deliberately narrow terms of...
    Labour
  • Govt must make up lost time on sexual violence law reform
    The Government must prioritise any recommendations from the Law Commission to improve criminal process for sexual violence cases after it stalled reform work for two years, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Labour is pleased Justice Minister Amy Adams has...
    Labour
  • Govt must make up lost time on sexual violence law reform
    The Government must prioritise any recommendations from the Law Commission to improve criminal process for sexual violence cases after it stalled reform work for two years, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Labour is pleased Justice Minister Amy Adams has...
    Labour
  • White Ribbon day should last all year
    White Ribbon Day is an opportunity for all men to stand up and affirm to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence towards women, says Labour’s Associate Justice Spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “Violence towards women is rampant across all sectors...
    Labour
  • White Ribbon day should last all year
    White Ribbon Day is an opportunity for all men to stand up and affirm to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence towards women, says Labour’s Associate Justice Spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “Violence towards women is rampant across all sectors...
    Labour
  • Report confirms John Key abused power of PM’s Office
    Today's Inspector General of Intelligence and Security's (IGIS) report confirms that the Prime Minister's office engaged in a serious abuse of power, says the Green Party.The IGIS report looked at the release of an Official Information Act request to disgraced...
    Greens
  • IGIS report a damning indictment on former spy boss
    The report by Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security into the release of classified documents is a sad and damning indictment on former spy boss Warren Tucker, Labour’s MP for Mount Roskill and former leader Phil Goff says.  “This report upholds...
    Labour
  • IGIS report a damning indictment on former spy boss
    The report by Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security into the release of classified documents is a sad and damning indictment on former spy boss Warren Tucker, Labour’s MP for Mount Roskill and former leader Phil Goff says.  “This report upholds...
    Labour
  • South Auckland disadvantaged by new decile rankings
    New decile rankings have South Auckland schools at scores that show they are much more disadvantaged than the national average, says Labour’s Associate Auckland  Issues spokesperson Louisa Wall.  “As a measurement of disadvantage it is alarming that the average score...
    Labour
  • South Auckland disadvantaged by new decile rankings
    New decile rankings have South Auckland schools at scores that show they are much more disadvantaged than the national average, says Labour’s Associate Auckland  Issues spokesperson Louisa Wall.  “As a measurement of disadvantage it is alarming that the average score...
    Labour
  • Sexism, rape culture and power
    Our discourse around sexual violence is complicated. All too often perpetrators are described as ‘monsters’, so when someone you know tells you the lovely man that you really like sexually abused them it’s hard to believe, because they’re not a...
    Greens
  • Time for an economy that works for all New Zealanders
    New Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says the challenge for the National Government is to support an economy that delivers good, sustainable jobs paying decent wages. “It’s time the economy delivered for all New Zealanders, not just the fortunate few....
    Labour
  • Time for an economy that works for all New Zealanders
    New Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says the challenge for the National Government is to support an economy that delivers good, sustainable jobs paying decent wages. “It’s time the economy delivered for all New Zealanders, not just the fortunate few....
    Labour
  • New faces, wise heads in bold Labour line up
    Labour Leader Andrew Little today announced a bold new caucus line up which brings forward new talent and draws on the party’s depth of experience....
    Labour
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    Greens
  • National opens door further to Chinese property speculators
    National has further opened the door to Chinese property speculators with the registration of a third Chinese bank here that will make it easier for Chinese investors to invest in New Zealand properties, the Green Party said today."As well, former...
    Greens
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens
  • When the teflon is stripped away…
    . . To re-cap something I wrote on 13 September, regarding a hard-hitting interview between “The Nation’s” Lisa Owen and John Key; For possibly the first time since Stephen Sackur interviewed Key on Hard Talk in May, 2011, this [...
    The Daily Blog
  • My Select Committee submission against the “terrorist fighters” bill
    This morning I gave this “oral submission” to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee opposing the Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill.  It is a pity only Greens are against the Bill. It’s a pleasure to be able to talk to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Pixies in the Garden? Making money
    In 2009, John Key said “there aren’t little pixies at the bottom of the garden printing cash” (John Armstrong, Colin Espiner). He was wrong of course. Just about every country has its own pixie-in-chief, though not at the bottom of the...
    The Daily Blog
  • AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL PRESS RELEASE – Government must allow further scrut...
    As the New Zealand government seeks to rush new through new anti-terror legislation, Amnesty International is raising grave concerns over the speed at which the Bill is being rushed through Parliament and is calling for an extension to the consultation...
    The Daily Blog
  • Tension inside the Blue Tent – questions that should be asked
    With Andrew Little on fire taking a straight shooting no crap approach to Key’s dead eyed duplicity, the tensions inside the Blue Tent of National are at risk of erupting again. When the TeamKey brand falters, National’s factions sharpen their knives....
    The Daily Blog
  • FiveAA Australia: Is NZ’s PM a Liar? + Kim Dotcom Says He’s Broke
    5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.In this week’s Across The Ditch bulletin on FiveAA.com.au Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey discuss how allegations of dirty politics continue to dog the Prime Minister John Key’s third term in government. Also, internet tycoon...
    The Daily Blog
  • Cam’s ‘Slightly Left of Centre’ sock puppet threatens Key in public
    What did Judith Collins say about payback? Looks like Slater has taken that lesson to heart as he uses his sock puppet over at Slightly Left of Centre to drop threats and hints that he has recorded conversations with Key that has...
    The Daily Blog
  • Justice System Changes Must Ensure No More Roastings In Court
    On Monday there was good news for rape survivors and this blog was supposed to be about the success of our advocacy, and it is about that success, but today’s events have brought into stark focus the real-world importance of...
    The Daily Blog
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Key Post Electio...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Key Post Election...
    The Daily Blog
  • Top 5 Texts from Cam to Key
    So Cam texted Key before the report came out despite Key claiming no contact? Top 5 Texts from Cam to Key 5 – I still have all the photos 4 – Yes my shapeshifting Lizard Master Overlord 3 – Max isn’t talking to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Hold on – did NZ just have a coup?
    Ummmmm. Wait a minute here. Just so that we all understand what’s been revealed. The Prime Minister’s Office used the Secret Intelligence Service to falsify classified information to smear the Leader of the Opposition via a far right hate blogger...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased are the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased are the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased are the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • Phillip Smith en-route back to New Zealand.
    Police confirm that Phillip Smith has been deported from Brazil and is en-route back to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • Scaremongering and Showing Contempt for Democracy
    The government has been accused of fabricating an increased risk to New Zealand security to justify new invasive powers in the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. And its decision to allow just 48 hours for public submissions on the Bill...
    Scoop politics
  • Legislation “a travesty of democratic process”
    Peace Movement Aotearoa today called on the government to put the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill on hold - pending a comprehensive review of existing legislation - in a written submission to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee,...
    Scoop politics
  • Bill needs amending to better protect human rights
    The Human Rights Commission submission to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee this afternoon on the Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill makes specific recommendations relating to passport denial; increasing safeguards around visual...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ’s gender equality issues in international forum
    New Zealand faces similar gender equality issues and opportunities to those of its neighbouring countries, according to the latest international conference on women’s empowerment....
    Scoop politics
  • Countering human trafficking is an ongoing challenge for NZ
    At first glance, it is difficult to believe that human trafficking is an offence that is taking place in New Zealand. It is a harsh reminder that the rule of law sometimes does not reach far enough....
    Scoop politics
  • Government must allow further scrutiny of bill
    As the New Zealand government seeks to rush new through new anti-terror legislation, Amnesty International is raising grave concerns over the speed at which the Bill is being rushed through Parliament and is calling for an extension to the consultation...
    Scoop politics
  • Calling on anti-violence activists to step up
    Māori Party co-leaders believe every individual, whānau, hapū and iwi can help stop the high level of family violence that exists in our country....
    Scoop politics
  • More effective social services inquiry update Nov 2014
    The Productivity Commission’s More effective social services inquiry aims to shed light on how commissioning and contracting influence the quality and effectiveness of social services, and to suggest actions government agencies and others could take...
    Scoop politics
  • Keith Locke presentation on Countering Foreign Fighters Bill
    It’s a pleasure to be able to talk to members of Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee again, and remember my 12 years on your committee. However, I don’t wish my submission today to be taken as endorsement of...
    Scoop politics
  • Significant issues for NZ in sea level rise report
    Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) has recognised findings of Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Dr Jan Wright’s report released today on the impact of rising seas as significant for coastal areas of New Zealand, aligning well with work the...
    Scoop politics
  • White Ribbon Campaign Shocked at Fatal Stabbing
    The White Ribbon Campaign extends its condolences to the family of a women fatally stabbed in Auckland's North Shore....
    Scoop politics
  • One Plan signing is “historic moment” for the environment
    The signing of the Horizon Regional Council’s One Plan after a decade of debate, legal action and controversy is being hailed by Fish & Game as a landmark in the battle to protect the nation’s water quality. Horizons councillors approved...
    Scoop politics
  • Look at the Road, Not the Speedo
    Responding to the Fairfax article that police will be issuing tickets over the summer to anyone driving 1km/h or more over the speed limit, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Worker immunity critical to safety in Meat Industry
    The Meat Workers Union has today urged the Select Committee hearing submissions on the Health & Safety Reform bill to strengthen provisions that protect the rights of workers to be involved and speak out, saying that it’s becoming increasingly...
    Scoop politics
  • PCE report brings home impacts of climate change
    Youth climate organisation Generation Zero has welcomed the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment's ' Changing Climate and Rising Seas ' report and says it demonstrates climate change will affect all of us....
    Scoop politics
  • Law Society urges reduction of terrorist fighter bill powers
    The New Zealand Law Society says powers proposed in the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill should be reduced to ensure they are strictly limited to countering the threats that have arisen....
    Scoop politics
  • Sea level rise won’t only affect infrastructure
    The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird is asking the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) to widen the focus of her next report on climate change-driven sea level rise....
    Scoop politics
  • Changing climate and rising seas: Understanding the science
    During my seven years as Commissioner, I have consistently said that climate change is the biggest environmental issue we face. This investigation has provided an opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of what is causing climate change and one of...
    Scoop politics
  • Council refuses to take part in farcical submissions process
    The New Zealand Council for Civil Liberties refuses to take part in the submissions process around the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill....
    Scoop politics
  • Laws of War to Be Debated at Wellington Event
    The political and human consequences of war and civil unrest are widely covered in themedia but International Humanitarian Law (IHL), the body of law which exists to protect all parties to armed conflict, rarely gets attention....
    Scoop politics
  • Forum Compact Development Partner Peer Review of New Zealand
    Following the completion of the first leg of the review of New Zealand’s development cooperation in the Pacific, the Forum Compact Review Team is now visiting Kiribati to assess the effectiveness of New Zealand’s assistance in the small island developing...
    Scoop politics
  • YWCA Auckland award for long-time women’s role model
    New Zealand’s first female Governor General and Mayor of Auckland has been granted a Lifetime Achievement Award by YWCA Auckland, for her services to the Auckland community and acting as a role model for Kiwi women nationwide....
    Scoop politics
  • Government Urged Not To Miss Cosmetics Win For Animals
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE is urging the Government not to let animals down and vote for an amendment to the Animal Welfare Bill. The amendment would ban cosmetics testing on animals forever. The Bill had it’s second reading in Parliament...
    Scoop politics
  • Police pursuit results in serious injury of innocent man
    A report released today by the Independent Police Conduct Authority has found Police failed to comply with policy during a pursuit in Auckland in 2013 which left an innocent man with serious injuries....
    Scoop politics
  • US Warning against GMO threat
    An international warning about the impact of GMOs has been released. It comes just as Parliament's Primary Production Committee is to hear the response of the Ministry of Primary Industries to the 1700 signature "Freeze on GMO" petition that...
    Scoop politics
  • Fish & Game wants more than lip service from agriculture
    Fish & Game wants to know how the government will ensure the agriculture sector protects the environment after the Primary Industries Minister warned primary sector leaders that environmental sustainability is no longer a “nice to have.”...
    Scoop politics
  • Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Thursday, 27 November 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Thursday, 27 November 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Ngā Aho Whakaari Questions TMP Handling of TVNZ Contract
    Television New Zealand (TVNZ) recently announced that internal production of its iconic Māori programmes ‘Waka Huia’ and ‘Marae Investigates’ would cease and that it would outsource the production of these programmes for the duration of...
    Scoop politics
  • Ngā Aho Whakaari Questions TMP Handling of TVNZ Contract
    Television New Zealand (TVNZ) recently announced that internal production of its iconic Māori programmes ‘Waka Huia’ and ‘Marae Investigates’ would cease and that it would outsource the production of these programmes for the duration of...
    Scoop politics
  • Office of the Inspector-General of Intelligence And Security
    Statements from the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (x2) 1. In response to questions about particular contents of the report: Ms Gwyn said that - as she had said yesterday when releasing the report - the report, including the factual...
    Scoop politics
  • Office of the Inspector-General of Intelligence And Security
    Statements from the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (x2) 1. In response to questions about particular contents of the report: Ms Gwyn said that - as she had said yesterday when releasing the report - the report, including the factual...
    Scoop politics
  • Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 13 February 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 13 February 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • SIS Scandal Leaves Key Unscathed
    Prime Minister John Key has been almost entirely unscathed by the SIS scandal, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict. The probability Mr Key will remain leader of the National Party...
    Scoop politics
  • SIS Scandal Leaves Key Unscathed
    Prime Minister John Key has been almost entirely unscathed by the SIS scandal, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict. The probability Mr Key will remain leader of the National Party...
    Scoop politics
  • Lawyer jailed for fraud against loyal clients
    John David Milne (79) has been sentenced to eight years and one month of imprisonment today in the Christchurch District Court following a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) prosecution....
    Scoop politics
  • Lawyer jailed for fraud against loyal clients
    John David Milne (79) has been sentenced to eight years and one month of imprisonment today in the Christchurch District Court following a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) prosecution....
    Scoop politics
  • Lawyer jailed for fraud against loyal clients
    John David Milne (79) has been sentenced to eight years and one month of imprisonment today in the Christchurch District Court following a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) prosecution....
    Scoop politics
  • MFaT CEO To Announce Resignation
    NZ's leading Political publication Trans Tasman can reveal Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade chief executive John Allen will announce his resignation on Monday. Allen, who was controversially recruited to head up the Ministry in 2009 after a stellar...
    Scoop politics
  • MFaT CEO To Announce Resignation
    NZ's leading Political publication Trans Tasman can reveal Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade chief executive John Allen will announce his resignation on Monday. Allen, who was controversially recruited to head up the Ministry in 2009 after a stellar...
    Scoop politics
  • MFaT CEO To Announce Resignation
    NZ's leading Political publication Trans Tasman can reveal Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade chief executive John Allen will announce his resignation on Monday. Allen, who was controversially recruited to head up the Ministry in 2009 after a stellar...
    Scoop politics
  • Rotorua White Ribbon Ride urges stand against violence
    Dave Donaldson will never forget the story of a woman who escaped her violent partner by going to jail. Some years ago while the Rotorua deputy mayor was still a police officer, he escorted a woman to Auckland to serve...
    Scoop politics
  • Rotorua White Ribbon Ride urges stand against violence
    Dave Donaldson will never forget the story of a woman who escaped her violent partner by going to jail. Some years ago while the Rotorua deputy mayor was still a police officer, he escorted a woman to Auckland to serve...
    Scoop politics
  • Rotorua White Ribbon Ride urges stand against violence
    Dave Donaldson will never forget the story of a woman who escaped her violent partner by going to jail. Some years ago while the Rotorua deputy mayor was still a police officer, he escorted a woman to Auckland to serve...
    Scoop politics
  • Air Line Pilots’ Association on proposed rules for Drones
    The New Zealand Air Line Pilots’ Association is welcoming calls by the Civil Aviation Authority to have industry and the public have their say on proposed rules for unmanned aircraft operations....
    Scoop politics
  • Air Line Pilots’ Association on proposed rules for Drones
    The New Zealand Air Line Pilots’ Association is welcoming calls by the Civil Aviation Authority to have industry and the public have their say on proposed rules for unmanned aircraft operations....
    Scoop politics
  • Air Line Pilots’ Association on proposed rules for Drones
    The New Zealand Air Line Pilots’ Association is welcoming calls by the Civil Aviation Authority to have industry and the public have their say on proposed rules for unmanned aircraft operations....
    Scoop politics
  • Family Violence Report on Gender Bias Welcomed
    Family First NZ is welcoming a report which says that blaming men for domestic violence is ‘gender bias’....
    Scoop politics
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