Written By: - Date published: 1:38 pm, June 30th, 2014 - 38 comments
National has been sucking billions of dollars out of the provincial road maintenance budgets to throw into “Roads of Significance only to National” since 2009. In the latest round, maintenance costs for roads mostly used by trucks will drop to an average of 52%, with the small populations of ratepayers expected to subsidize trucking firms. Is it any wonder that they’re looking at National’s token gesture over the weekend with disdain and anger. Meanwhile the urban centres aren’t getting the public transport they need.
Written By: - Date published: 8:55 am, June 17th, 2014 - 107 comments
Almost a week after last week’s storm, some people in West Auckland are only just getting their power back on, while others are still without hot water. Some parts of Auckland’s west are becoming increasingly neglected under John Key’s watch, especially since the centralising-moves following Hide’s blueprint for the “supercity”.
Written By: - Date published: 7:24 am, May 4th, 2014 - 27 comments
An NZ Herald article about Mai Chen’s book on Auckland Council, supports big power, big money, big competition, and economic activities focused on anything but the production of material needs and wants. It ignores the struggling precariat living with housing, income, transport and energy poverty.
Written By: - Date published: 9:49 am, April 29th, 2014 - 58 comments
Out of sight-out of mind seems to be the logic of Auckland City’s bylaw to come into effect next month, to outlaw begging on the streets. The clear message from Native Affairs report, ‘Walk on By‘, last night, is that the bylaw is the result of pressure from the comfortable middle classes. [Update: bylaw only says it's an offence where begging causes a nuisance]
Written By: - Date published: 10:42 am, March 7th, 2014 - 13 comments
Mai Chen argues that the current review of Auckland Council CCOs will put them on a tighter leash. Tony Holman argues against the whole CCO set up: it’s a trojan horse, 2 step towards privatisation of Auckland assets. Aucklanders need to have their say. Vote out Team Key to prevent such sales.
Written By: - Date published: 4:05 pm, February 19th, 2014 - 28 comments
Daljit Singh got an inappropriately short sentence for committing electoral fraud. It is hardly a deterrent to prospective politicians from trying to fiddle the electoral system. What was interesting was the way that the fraud was picked up – using back end systems. Far better than the type of populist stupidity to intimidate voters that National MP’s are currently supporting.
Written By: - Date published: 9:28 am, February 8th, 2014 - 67 comments
The fiasco of the wet dick and the perverts shuddered to a conclusion yesterday with the direct bill of around $250,000. Len Brown was strong-armed into paying $40,000 for the audit which turned up nothing much except that his wife brought a lot of hotel nights. Questions remain about who was responsible for the waste caused by the lack of scoping of the external audit. Looks like dirty politics at the ratepayers expense.
Written By: - Date published: 5:19 pm, January 23rd, 2014 - 23 comments
The Herald continues its tabloid-style vendetta against Len Brown by serving up non-news in a shock-horror frame to make the mayor look bad. With a combination of the delicate removal/rewriting of what was said and a a senile loss of memory about the chains imposed on Auckland by National, Act and Rodney Hide – the Granny Herald continues its downward slide into irrelevance.
Written By: - Date published: 9:54 am, January 14th, 2014 - 46 comments
Auckland Council probably has only 100 days left to sort itself out. Otherwise it is going to be a long three years where the prospects of good being achieved will be poor.
Written By: - Date published: 11:00 am, January 6th, 2014 - 51 comments
The Local Government Commission is currently proposing to crush a number of local bodies together into the same kind of mess that the Auckland super city has been suffering. Undemocratic and divorced from anything local because only a wealthy few can consider standing and those few can ignore any local wishes from the token local boards. The only defense that citizens have against the LGC is to force binding poll. Be ready to do so for Northland and Hastings/Napier.
Written By: - Date published: 10:37 am, December 27th, 2013 - 135 comments
It should be the name of a group from a bizarro version of the 1960′s. But no, it is what passes for the governance of the Auckland City Council these days. There is our mayor with his wet dick. Then we have the five perverts who are busy emoting faux outrage whilst quietly forgetting that we elected them to help run a city. Dick Quax, Cameron Brewer, and the handful of other perverts in council can play with that aspect of their lives on their own time.
Written By: - Date published: 12:59 pm, December 24th, 2013 - 29 comments
Media beat-ups around personality politics divert from Auckland’s real problems: an undemocratic council structure that panders to corporates, & that does not represent Auckland’s diversity, while doing little to counter the destructive impact of the inequality gap.
Written By: - Date published: 8:32 pm, December 22nd, 2013 - 42 comments
Today’s Herald editorial gets one thing right – a media pack has turned on Len Brown. But it’s not gutsy journalism – it comes straight out of the Rupert Murdoch playbook. Len’s latest sin is his upgrades – EY says they total $32,000 for 64 occasions. That’s $500 an upgrade, which seems a lot on top of what Len paid. The report does not detail how this total was arrived at, and I cannot find any example of any journalist asking questions about it.
Written By: - Date published: 7:46 am, December 20th, 2013 - 239 comments
Cameron Brewer apparently forgot to file a declaration of interests in 2012 which should have included details of a four day junket to the Gold Coast paid for by Mediaworks. Dick Quax forgot to file returns in 2011 and 2012. Is an investigation required?
Written By: - Date published: 10:03 pm, December 19th, 2013 - 88 comments
It was the best of times in Wellington today. Council workers will get a living wage, and parking wardens will become council employees so they will get decent pay also. It was the worst of times in Auckland as the right-wing Scrooges having failed to remove Mayor Len Brown took it out on their workers by overturning his call for a living wage for Council staff.
Written By: - Date published: 8:52 am, December 19th, 2013 - 264 comments
Today’s Council meeting will no doubt develop a great deal of heat but little light. And then hopefully everyone can settle down and working on the real job which is to create Auckland into a great city.
Written By: - Date published: 11:03 am, December 18th, 2013 - 245 comments
The right wing NZ Herald editors, have misused their position in the news mediascape to produce some shameless, highly partisan and manipulative propaganda. They do not have the interest of all Aucklanders at heart. More considered analysis needed. Let’s wait for tomorrow’s public meeting.
Written By: - Date published: 8:11 am, December 16th, 2013 - 170 comments
The detail of the Ernest and Young report on Len Brown clears him of all significiant wrongdoing on the local government purse. The hotel room upgrade values are just complete bullshit for someone who had a regular family timeouts at one hotel – which did most of the almost all of the upgrades. The type of customer that all hotels want. The political question is about receiving anything “free” from Skycity.
Written By: - Date published: 10:39 am, December 13th, 2013 - 157 comments
… will be one that has effective policies to make a more equal, inclusive and democratic society, will seriously address the concerns of those least well-off, and not just pander to the concerns of people on (comfortable) middle incomes.Values in need of a slogan?
Written By: - Date published: 8:01 am, November 27th, 2013 - 42 comments
I heard Duncan Garner on the radio the other day mocking Napierites’ opposition to being forced into a Hawke’s Bay-wide super-council. ‘Why should there be 2 mayors within 21km of each other?’ he asked. Nah. The question is: ‘why not?’ If they want to keep own having their own council, that they pay for, why should someone else get to take it away? It didn’t used to be possible. National made it possible.
Written By: - Date published: 1:08 am, November 26th, 2013 - 99 comments
Ok, I know this image has a lot of issues. It is a 256 color animated gif. Dithered to hell. Bad colour balance, tilt and even a moving focus point. But it certainly makes its point about what kind of road space we’re paying for to inefficiently fill with cars? Have the idiots at NZTA and in this incompetent National government not read their own statistics? Roads aren’t filling up. Public transport does.
Written By: - Date published: 7:58 am, November 19th, 2013 - 98 comments
The Government is in the process of handing out oil exploration permits which would if unchanged allow drilling 6 nautical miles out from the west coast beaches of Auckland. And Auckland Council had the chance to submit on the proposal and did so, in a very gentle way, but forgot to ask the locals including the local board. There has to be a better way.
Written By: - Date published: 7:48 am, November 7th, 2013 - 15 comments
Len Brown will today propose to Council that it funds a living wage for all Council and CCO employees. It is intended that this is funded through savings, particularly with high level wages, and efficiencies and will be brought in over three years if supported by the Council.
Written By: - Date published: 8:15 pm, November 4th, 2013 - 12 comments
Democrat Bill de Blasio is almost 40 points clear of his Republican rival in the race for Mayor of New York City. His parents were investigated for communist sympathies. An anti-apartheid poster hangs on his kitchen wall. He loves Europe’s social democrats, admires Latin American liberation theology and is poised to confound the conservative trend in US politics by sweeping to an improbable triumph as the next Mayor of New York in this week’s elections. There are some lessons from our local elections too.
Written By: - Date published: 9:11 am, October 30th, 2013 - 18 comments
BLip is well known on this site for his ever-growing linked lists of the lies of John Key. But it appears he has been branching out into the role of reporter in this hilarious account of the swearing of the Auckland council last night that was picked out of Open Mike.
Written By: - Date published: 12:01 pm, October 29th, 2013 - 81 comments
Auckland authorities disrespected past worker struggles in allowing an art work on the waterfront, that commemorates the ruthless suppression of the 1913 strike. After protests, it has now been covered. Time for the many to unite for fairness at work & in daily living!
Written By: - Date published: 7:51 am, October 27th, 2013 - 106 comments
And so it continues. Inside the Palino-Wewege-Cook-Slater camp, every one is pointing the finger at everyone else and putting the blame elsewhere for the clumsily executed smear campaign against Len Brown. Got to wonder who is in the shadows frantically pulling various levers?
Written By: - Date published: 3:37 pm, October 26th, 2013 - 50 comments
David Jones QC argues Banks could not have signed a false declaration of election donations because he did not read it. But Banks’ campaign manager’s evidence was that Banks “glanced at it before signing it.” The Oxford dictionary defines “glance” as “take a quick or hurried look;” “read quickly or cursorily.” So Banks did read the donations return. It would have been hard to miss the $15,690 recorded as both a radio expense and an anonymous donation which he had personally solicited.
Written By: - Date published: 8:52 am, October 21st, 2013 - 66 comments
Who says the ‘threatening texts’ in the Brown/Slater/Palino came from Brown’s camp? Didn’t the threatening text push Chuang into the affidavit, after weeks of being pressured by Palino advisor, Wewege? Doesn’t that make those texts awful useful for Slater/Palino? Do you believe Palino knew nothing of the affair, as he claims? If the purpose of the affidavit had been to present it to Brown quietly and get him to resign, wouldn’t that be blackmail?
Written By: - Date published: 8:03 pm, October 19th, 2013 - 167 comments
Slater’s track record speaks for itself. As the Brown-Chuang-Wewege-Palino story unfolds, his angle on the story shifts, and the contradictions abound. On The Nation this morning, Slater lays it out: politics is a dirty game, and that’s the game he’s playing.
Written By: - Date published: 9:23 pm, October 18th, 2013 - 260 comments
Of course John Palino did not know about the Len Brown Bevan Chuang relationship despite Chuang’s boyfriend who knew of the relationship being on his campaign team and despite Cameron Slater’s father being Palino’s campaign manager. Update: The Herald this morning has reported that Chuang claims to have met Palino for 90 minutes two days before the news of the affair was made public where the disclosing to Brown of the news was discussed.