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The Standard

Gower plays a shocker

Written By: - Date published: 8:46 am, January 29th, 2014 - 93 comments
Categories: Media, tv - Tags: , ,

You are NOT the story

You are NOT the story

The last couple of days have been interesting.  There has been a well orchestrated media onslaught on Labour’s Best Start policy.  And when you have a look at what is being said you have to wonder about the independence of the media.

An example of this is the behaviour of TV3 and Paddy Gower.

Yesterday Gower tweeted that “David Cunliffe has just walked off on a press conference refusing to answer questions about the baby bonus”.

Here is the video.  Watch it and form your own opinion.  Count the number of questions on Best Start that Cunliffe answered.  Wonder about the phrase “walked off”.  Question also the description of the event as a “press conference”.

Clearly Cunliffe spent over 9 minutes answering questions and then politely excused himself on the basis that he had to attend a caucus meeting.

Later on Gower criticised Cunliffe and the policy because those that were on paid parental leave would not receive best start, that is the policy was not generous enough, and then criticised Cunliffe because theoretically a couple earning just short of $300,000 per annum could qualify, in other words the policy was too generous.

The paid parental leave criticism is particularly weird.  Labour and Sue Moroney have advocated for 26 weeks paid parental leave but the suggestion is that it is somehow disingenuous because both paid parental leave AND Best Start will not be paid simultaneously really makes you wonder at the degree of spin being applied.  The introduction of either will improve the plight of kiwi families.

The question of coverage always arises when new policies are proposed.  If and when the policy is introduced then these details will be worked out.  But the unnervingly negative spin that Gower and TV3 applied really makes you wonder.

Compare and contrast this with the treatment of National’s education policy announcement.  And note the lack of questioning on how that policy can be afforded.  After all it is the thick end of $400 million being spent over four years so if implemented it will have a significant effect on the country’s finances.

Gower has clearly bought into the idea that the practice of media is akin to engaging in a blood sport where success and prestige is measured by the number of scalps that you accumulate.

This year is going to be a long and important year.  As a mainstream media organisation TV3 owes it to the country to report the facts and to leave the spin out.

93 comments on “Gower plays a shocker”

  1. Enough is Enough 1

    It is really scary how the media are playing this right now.

    The contrast between National’s Education policy and Labour’s Best Start policy is incredible. One is positive bull shit spin, the other is negative rubbish.

    Neither narrative is an accurate description of the actual policy or how it will effect ordinary kiwi kids.

    Don’t worry about Key this year. The biggest challenge will be the media.

    • well I never 1.1

      almost every article I read tells me more about the “journalist” than the person they are writing about these days. Trouble is, I don’t really care about what their politics are, as they are not running the country, should someone mention that to them?

  2. Lionel 2

    Paddy Gower is a typical tory reporter who can,t see past his idol Key

    • gem 2.1

      ”Paddy Gower is a typical tory reporter who can,t see past his idol Key.”
      No, he can’t see past himself.
      Oh, and why not drop the chummy beltway-esque ‘Paddy’ to refer to him.

  3. philj 3

    This looks like a media scrum. The media is a major issue in this election campaign. And is biased pro National.

  4. The Outrider 4

    This on top of Paul Henry’s outright rebuttal when Cunliffe stated his assumption he was a ‘neutral journalist’ can only mean that TV3 are rapidly turning into Fox NZ. If the rumours surrounding the future of Campbell Live’s uncertain future turn out to be true there will be little value in watching this network for news content.

    • North 4.1

      There are how many millions of dollar reasons to understand that TV3 will do as expected ?

    • Anne 4.2

      What rumours are they The Outrider?

      • idlegus 4.2.1

        there are rumours on the internet that the show is to be cancelled. i have seen nothing official so i do wonder if its a bit bs. if true it would be pretty sad as far as mainstream telly news media goes.

        • Anne 4.2.1.1

          If they dump Campbell Live then you would definitely have to wonder about interference coming from the government and John Key in particular. Not direct interference of course but coming through Mediaworks. An attempt to “get rid of John Campbell” in Election year? It wouldn’t be because Campbell is left wing because in my view he’s not. But he isn’t afraid to call out bull-shit when he sees it.

          • The Outrider 4.2.1.1.1

            Hopefully the rumours are indeed bs but we shall see. I agree Anne, Campbell’s value is that he is not partisan in his approach to political coverage and NZ needs journalists who can retain at least a modicum of professional objectivity

            • You_Fool 4.2.1.1.1.1

              Given how many people watch and thus how much advertising $$$ the show brings in, I cannot see MediaWorks dropping JC, even to please the evil overlords.

          • Geoff Lye 4.2.1.1.2

            Yeah government pressure due to the help mediaworks got from the goverments coffers at our expense.

  5. geoff 5

    Fantastic video, MS.
    Seems pretty obvious that Paddy Gower is just plain dumb! The questions he asked illustrated that he doesn’t even have a basic understanding of the policy, and DC had to talk him through it like he was a child.

    And a very confident performance from David, he’s really getting into his stride.

  6. LynWiper 6

    So how is he made accountable for his biased reporting? Certainly not what one would expect from a professional journalist. Do journalists have an ethics code? What responsibility/ accountability do National News teams have to the public? They certainly hold a very powerful position so surely there must be some professional guidelines. It appears some work on the belief ‘all’s fair in love, war and politics!’
    Mickey, love the ‘You are Not the story’ although perhaps the You should be shouted as well!

    • weka 6.1

      I love that photo caption too.

      Complaints about the broadcast can go to the BSA

      http://bsa.govt.nz/complaints/formal-complaint

      • karol 6.1.1

        I added that caption to that picture a while back for a post. I used it to make a particular point about the current MO of our infotainment media: journos report from in front of some scene that makes them look like they are on the spot and/or an authority.

        Journos like Gower, (and Garner when I created the caption), report from in front of a picture of parliament – it creates an air of political authority, as if they are in the know about what is happening in politics, and are an expert.

        After Cunliffe finished his State of the Nation speech on Monday, Gower was quick to get to the fron of the hall, in front of a camera with its lights on. Presumably he was aiming to have Cunliffe in the background behind him as he was coming down off the stage.

        All tricks of the current spin trade, that helps to mask the biases of the likes of Gower, and Garner in his time at TV3.

  7. North 7

    Gower might well have cause for career concern in the context of a change of government. He really has no choice but to go for broke given his displays of Cunliffe phobia going back some time now. Strange person. Really does seem to understand that HE is the story.

  8. greywarbler 8

    I get the black oblong for the video but no controls so all remains dark on my old computer.

    • mickysavage 8.1

      What browser are you using gw? Do youtube videos normally play properly?

      • greywarbler 8.1.1

        I use opera usually. And lately youtube videos often stop after 20 seconds or I get a message right at the beginning that the video can’t be played and come back later. My old computer may be past it, we have been monitoring noise on our line, and thinking about things I personally am not up with. So I’d have to talk to my son for the detail.

        The vid is available now. Did you do something, or do you think it was a matter of time.? I have the idea that a slower system can’t access content if a faster one is competing.
        Anyway I have to go and do some weeding before it heats up outside so will look at the vid later.

        What do you think of making use of the Labour web site to list the malinformation going out from the media, and making a statement that corrects the bumf to prevent the lies from getting set in stone? I think there is mention of the fiction-as-fact being picked up by other media and repeated.

    • ropata 8.2

      greywarbler, try this link instead: http://youtu.be/Bj7LkmwHtVc

  9. Blue 9

    Everyone knows Paddy’s a wee bit special. Political reporting is really not his forte.

    The media bias is something Labour has to live with, unfortunately. They are not going to get any favours from the MSM and because of that they have to fight harder. Lucky for us that DC is so awesome at it.

  10. Colonial Viper 10

    A retraction and correction from Gower is in order, I think.

    Until that happens, just delay all press material going to TV3 by one hour. In any press conference, select and respond to TV3 questions only at the very end of the session.

    No media channel likes being behind their competitors. I’m sure Gower’s managers will quickly ensure editorial and journalistic standards are properly set.

    • greywarbler 10.1

      CV
      That’s clever thinking – we need to use strategy in this war of words and meaning and facts twisted to become factoids.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        It’s aggressive and has some risks, but considering the grilling over fuck all in the last two days, why not.

    • gem 10.2

      ‘Until that happens, just delay all press material going to TV3 by one hour. ‘
      Press releases go online when released, on websites like Scoop, TDB, and TS and others, so that’s a bit pointless.
      Carrots work better than sticks anyway.

      • Colonial Viper 10.2.1

        Press releases go online when released, on websites like Scoop, TDB, and TS and others, so that’s a bit pointless.

        No, it makes a big difference.

        The result will be that TV3 can only post what other outlets post without having access to full appendices and references etc. And, they will be 10 minutes later online than everyone else even if they do a copy and paste.

        Carrots work better than sticks anyway.

        I think the combo works better than either alone.

        • lprent 10.2.1.1

          We already pick up the Green and Labour’s press releases in the feed. But I see that Labour doesn’t appear to have any at present. Be nice if someone told me when they were changing their feed URL (YET AGAIN) Bozos…. FFS – how hard is it to maintain the old URLS. It is usually just a redirect.

        • gem 10.2.1.2

          ”And, they will be 10 minutes later online than everyone else even if they do a copy and paste.”

          TV3 uses copy sourced from wire services for the website (as well as having its own online staff); will your ”aggressive” strategy halt this feed from an external source, or at least delay it by a few minutes?

          • Colonial Viper 10.2.1.2.1

            Effectiveness isn’t necessarily the point of every measure. There’s lots of ways to send the message that Labour expects solid coverage, professional and fair criticism.

            I’ve outlined just a few.

            Access is oxygen to journalists. I could keep going on detailing strategies if you like.

            • gem 10.2.1.2.1.1

              ”Effectiveness isn’t necessarily the point of every measure.”

              I see; your desired outcome is not an effective media strategy, but one that generates stories for TV3 and other news outlets about how Labour is strong-arming a network. Good one.

              ”I could keep going on detailing strategies if you like.”

              I wouldn’t if I was you; you patently know very little about how the media works.

  11. felix 11

    Fuck him.

    Cunliffe should ignore Gower’s questions until he apologises and sorts his shit out.

    Plenty of other journos to answer.

  12. BM 12

    I reckon Cunliffe should invite the media up to his Herne bay mansion for some beers and a BBQ.

    Cunliffe really needs to work on his PR, at the moment he’s about as popular as a dirty arse in an elevator.

    • felix 12.1

      You need to work on your colloquialisms. You sound like an inbred Grammar boy trying to talk working class.

      • greywarbler 12.1.1

        felix
        😀 You’re like a welcome breath of fresh air – after that elevator door was opened.

      • Mainlander 12.1.2

        So you meant to say BM sounds like your latest messiah Cunliff the original Herne Bay working class man, well spotted felix

        • felix 12.1.2.1

          Nah, Cunliffe is a well educated, sophisticated, eloquent man. BM just sounds like Cameron Slater.

        • Colonial Viper 12.1.2.2

          Yeah Cunliffe knows the working class well; he worked as a shearer when young and was in as an apartment building caretaker as a student.

          On the other hand, what the fuck as Key done, he can’t remember – or so he likes to tell the judge.

    • Rodel 12.2

      Bm You are silly..just silly. Are you 6 years old?

    • well I never 12.3

      BM stands for bowel motion in health speak

  13. captain hook 13

    sorry but I never watch TV3. They have nothing of value and now that parvenu pipsqueak gowere has made a meal out of nothing I dont think I will even bother to reconsider my decison.

  14. greywarbler 14

    There should be an official report on the Labour blog about any lies or wrong information put out by the media either claiming to quote speakers, or putting wrong inferences on anything they said – or didn’t say.

    For instance indicating firmly that silence after a question indicated a certain action or attitude, that a statement that it was up for negotiation meant more than there was an open mind to arguments about the subject.

    Labour has their own outlet where they can make their own statements with their own point of view without media spin. When there is spin in the media, this should be pointed out in a cool and clear manner with the names of the organisation stated, their political news manager and their flunkey monkey also mentioned.

  15. Philj 15

    Xox
    What better justification for Labgren establishing an independent non commercial PUBLIC broadcaster. And do it properly this time around, free from party political, or Government influence. Being challenged by a commercial media boof is a sort of payback for not doing it, I suppose.

  16. alwyn 16

    Cunliffe may want to do some of the things that people here are suggesting.
    He will however remember the remark attributed to Mark Twain “Never pick a fight with people who buy ink by the barrel”
    I wonder what the version for electronic media would be?

    If Cunliffe takes the view that he has been defamed (and I don’t mean that in the legal sense) the approach he should take is to demand time on their program to respond. If he is any good, and properly prepared, he can do what Key did to John Campbell regarding the GCSB bill and demolish them.

    • Francis 16.1

      I found Key incredibly arrogant during that interview, and I really cannot understand how people think that talking over the interviewer and reading out pre-scripted lines is “winning” an argument.

      However, if you say something enough times, people perceive it to be true. That’s how National gets away with most of their crap. With assistance from the bias media, they simply repeat a line of spin over an over again until people automatically think that way (eg Greens = Far Left).

      In the case of that interview, the commentators did their job for them, in consistently saying that Key “won” the interview (though how you can win an interview is beyond me. And Key certainly didn’t win the argument).

      So, while people may have a different opinion if they had watched the interview in isolation (ie without having heard any commentary about it) and if they didn’t know anything else about John Key or John Campbell, after expecting Key to have “won” it (and having predefined opinions on Key and Campbell), that’s exactly what they will think.

      If you had switched Key for Cunliffe but had exactly the same interview otherwise, I can almost guarantee people would consider that Cunliffe was incredibly arrogant during it.

    • karol 16.2

      Where has Cunliffe stated he’s been defamed? Are you confusing micky’s views in the post with Cunliffe’s

      And Cunliffe has taken up right of reply on Firstline this morning.

      • alwyn 16.2.1

        I don’t think you can possibly suggest that what I say can in any way be interpreted as saying that Cunliffe has stated such a thing. I only commented that he MAY feel like doing some of the things people have suggested but he won’t be so silly.
        If he has gone on TV3 he has done what I suggested he should do. Was he as good as Key was with John Campbell, by the way? Perhaps you aren’t the right person to ask.

  17. greywarbler 17

    alwyn
    I agree that Cunliffe should demand retraction.
    But if there is a record also of the various media miscraptions on the Labour site, with names, dates etc. that also would be there and be a weapon of fact that couldn’t be denied. It would show the continual and continuous behaviour of every offending media organisation and its flunkeys.

    It would be a silent accusation that could be referred to and checked by anyone.
    It would be like Blip’s list and that silent list could be a major factor in making the point to voters that often they are hearing bullshit, and that we need to get away from sloshing the dairy effluent around pretending that it is 100% pure quality, healthy essence of NZ life.

    • alwyn 17.1

      You are right, and it could be a permanent record of the media’s perceived sins.

      However how many people, other than the political tragics like you, me, and the other people who read this site are going to bother looking at it? After all, although there are many hits on the most popular web sites, Whale Oil, Kiwiblog and this one say, how many different people look at them and how many are from the general public?

      There isn’t much point in telling dedicated followers of one political viewpoint that the creator of the list you propose agrees with them. If you are trying to get a reaction from the general voting public, who correctly take the view that they have better things to do than read websites, I think the only way to do it is to get onto the main TV networks where most people get all their political news.

  18. incidentally, where does the $300,000 figure come from in the post? i thought it was maximum family income of $150,000?

    • weka 18.1

      Good point. Is that a mistake in the post, or was $300,000 used in the interview?

      • Seti 18.1.1

        From the TV3 link –

        If Labour wins power, all families who earn less than $150,000 will get the bonus. Mr Cunliffe says that limit would be judged when they had the baby and were down to one income.

        “It applies to income at the time they are applying for the $60-a-week benefit,” says Mr Cunliffe.

        That means a couple earning a total of up to $300,000 would get the bonus if one took leave to be with the baby and they fall under the $150,000 mark. But before this could be properly clarified, Mr Cunliffe walked off.

        • weka 18.1.1.1

          Thanks.

          If a couple both earn $149,000, and the woman stops working to have a baby, why would they go for the $60/wk when they could instead get paid parental leave?

          • One Anonymous Knucklehead 18.1.1.1.1

            Because the point of the Op-Ed piece was for Paddy to attack the proposal, not to report upon it.

          • Seti 18.1.1.1.2

            So once the ppl ends they would be entitled to the $60?

            And if income is assessed only when the baby was born then is there is no limit to what the partner taking leave was earning if they were the sole income or the other partner was below the $150k threshold?

            • Colonial Viper 18.1.1.1.2.1

              You shouldn’t be trying to bring successful, rich people down. It’s so sad to see this politics of envy from the Right Wing.

              • Seti

                Just trying to establish that when my partner Victoria Ransom and I have our child we will still get the baby bonus as I’m under the $150k.

                • lprent

                  Is she working?

                  • Lanthanide

                    I expect the $150k/year income includes investment returns, so unless she literally stored the cash under her mattress or invested it in something that had a 0% return, she’d very likely still be earning over the threshold.

                    Of course why we’re even pretending Seti isn’t just making shit up I’m not sure.

                • weka

                  Yes, once PPL ends, as long as your combined household income is below $150,000 and remains there, you can get the $60/wk until your child turns 1. After that the child support is income tested and abated, up to the child being 3.

                  My question to you Seti: will you claim the $60/wk for the second 6 months of your child’s life, when you patently don’t need it?

                  • Francis

                    Of course, if your partner did earn $100,000 per year (for example) which put you over the threshold, and they decided not to work for that year, you’d be earning $100,000 less anyways. The $60 per week (about $3,100 per year) wouldn’t come close to making up the difference.

                    If people who’s combined income is over $150,000 intend to have one parent stop working for the first year in order to bypass the threshold, it’s a very large sacrifice for a tiny gain…

                    Having said that, it’s probably very good for the child in the long-term, so it’s probably worth considering.

        • Lanthanide 18.1.1.2

          Or you know, actually, you could have a family income of $1.2M, then both decide to stop working and therefore be eligible for the $60/week because your income would be less than $150k.

          Or any other amount of income you choose.

          When you look at it like that, Paddy is making mountains out of molehills, because the policy quite clearly depends on your expected annual earnings for the year ahead, and it doesn’t matter what you used to earn.

    • Molly 18.2

      Gowers framing was that two income earners at $140,000/annum each, who go down to one income when the baby is born is an example of higher income earners being able to access the policy’s $60/wk.

      Cunliffe’s response could have been – “Yes, the $60/wk will go someway to addressing the $140K shortfall for the first twelve months of a child’s life” – but Gower was confusing in his questions to say the least.

      Using this analogy – a household earning just under $300K per year will be entitled to the policy IF one of those parents is no longer earning an income in the first year.

  19. Skinny 19

    The head of TV 3 needs to reign in all their staff for such bias reporting. Watching the headlines prior to the main 6pm news and then the actual news item, I was left bemused as to how this was a walk out by DC. Paddy was over dramatising things as per the norm with him.

    Let’s hope viewers saw it for what it was, trashy sensational gutter journalism. It may actually work in Labour’s best interests, Kiwi’s like backing the under dog when they feel their being stiffed.    

    • Hanswurst 19.1

      “Paddy was over dramatising things as per the norm with him.”

      He was not over-dramatising. He was lying.

    • Colonial Viper 19.2

      As I said before, simply supply TV3 with delayed media materials and impaired access to Labour MPs and news until some semblance of journalistic integrity is returned.

      • weka 19.2.1

        Like a boycott? So give access to other media but not TV3? I like the idea, although how would you decide which other media had a semblance of journalistic integrity?

        • Colonial Viper 19.2.1.1

          No – not a boycott: you still answer all questions but say only if they are provided in advance in writing, etc.

          Plenty of different ways to make a journo’s life difficult if they insist on being pricks and making the news about themselves.

        • Colonial Viper 19.2.1.2

          No, not a boycott. You want to say that you ARE in fact answering all of Paddy’s questions. But only if they are submitted in advance, in writing.

          And of course you will do a live interview with TV3 News. But only if the interviewer ain’t Paddy.

          Plenty of ways to make TV3’s job less easy if they insist on letting this BS continue.

          • gem 19.2.1.2.1

            ”And of course you will do a live interview with TV3 News. But only if the interviewer ain’t Paddy.”
            You do not do this. To punish a political editor you ignore their network in favour of another network or news outlet.
            No news organisation is going to let politicians call the shots about how jobs are allocated.

      • gem 19.2.2

        That’s naive bully boy stuff that mostly backfires.
        And anyway, do you think caucus unity is sufficient that MPs are going to shun journos they probably like, and in the process risk lack of exposure for the issues they are trying to push?
        I do think it’s reasonable however to ask for a retraction, because DC did not flounce off. Deal with the issue at hand.

        • Colonial Viper 19.2.2.1

          Sorry mate, I disagree with you. It’s not David Cunliffe who is being the “bully boy” here.

          • gem 19.2.2.1.1

            You misinterpreted my post.
            My use of the phrase bully boy referred to your ham-fisted and reactionary suggestion about how to manage the media.
            I have no doubt Messrs Cunliffe, both leader and media manager, have a few more clues about how to manage the relationship.

  20. Papa Tuanuku 20

    I’m liking how people are talking about coordinated responses to reporting that is:

    – untruthful
    – partisan
    – anti-democratic

    This is about more than a shoddy report by Gower, it’s about calling out and dismantling the organised backlash by redneck media – gower, henry, hoskins, every night! A healthy media environment should have at least one non-commercial and neutral source or news and analysis.

    what’s the bigger picture strategy? what did Obama do?

  21. Naki Man 21

    Gower is just balancing out that hard left infomercial on TV3 Communist Live

    • framu 21.1

      so making shit up is some sort of balance to you?

      jesus wept, your really a rather sad caricature of what you think you are arent you

      • Lanthanide 21.1.1

        What with reality having a leftward bias, they *have* to make things up in order to create ‘balance’.

    • Arfamo 21.2

      John Campbell is a communist? Oh my lord. Lol. You really are a scream funi man.

      • Naki Man 21.2.1

        John Campbell may not be a communist but he is far left of labour.
        Gower and Campbell are both very misleading at best.
        Helen Clark called Campbell a sanctimonious little creep and I agree with her.

  22. aerobubble 22

    What changed this weak. Oh, yeah, Henry. Could this anti-labour been some response to keep attention away from Henry and so kill off his new show. And really, which are we going to remember, $60 a week, or Cunliffe rushing for a Chorus meeting.

  23. emergency mike 23

    Paddy Gower – “Why did you stop beating your wife?” journalism.

  24. rod 24

    I read somewhere that Gower used to work for the NZ herald, well, that says it all.

  25. Tracey 25

    National and act supporters understand personal responsibility and wld never rejig their finances to get a extra 60 buck.

    In the meantime heres something the public wont hear from gower

    @publicaddress @@rsalmond Agreed. Still big impact policy, nothing to be ashamed of

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    Some people label ideas like a junk food tax as ‘nanny state’, but ultimately such soundbites are overly simplistic, because we already have a situation where the state interferes in our lives. Are unhealthy people such as smokers or people… ...
    Gareth’s WorldBy Geoff Simmons
    12 hours ago
  • Productivity Commission sends worrying signal ahead of Budget 2015
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says today’s release of the Productivity Commission’s draft Report Into Social Services sends a worrying signal of the Government’s intentions ahead of Budget 2015. ...
    12 hours ago
  • Power and ponytails
    From the ongoing unfolding issue about the Prime Minister's ponytail pulling, specifically in the case of Amanda Bailey, there's one little bit I want to write about a bit more, and it comes back to this quote from The Nation… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Dunedin talk: After the 1916 Rebellion – the Irish war for independence a...
    Speaker: Dr Philip Ferguson (Phil was a Sinn Fein activist in Dublin from 1986-1994, when he left because he disagreed with the direction the leadership of SF/IRA were taking. He is currently a member of Clann éirígí and he blogs… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    13 hours ago
  • “Get some guts”
    I will not—will not—stand by while... people are out there being beheaded. I am sorry, but this is the time to stand up and be counted. Get some guts and join the right side. That was John Key in February,… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    14 hours ago
  • Me on QT
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    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    14 hours ago
  • Submit to the power of authority
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    Rebuilding ChristchurchBy rebuildingchristchurch
    14 hours ago
  • “Casual”
    Key is, of course, right. He really is the most casual PM we’ve ever had. (Maybe if the Lamburglar had more than 9 weeks in the job he could have challenged for the title, but that didn’t happen so it… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    14 hours ago
  • Nepal aid effort intensifies
    Humanitarian agencies are preparing large-scale aid operations to earthquake-ravaged Nepal, with tonnes of supplies being flown into the country. Photo: AFP More than 4000 people are known to have died in the 7.8 quake on Saturday and more… ...
    14 hours ago
  • Cave Creek tragedy marked 20 years on
    Commemorations are taking place today to mark 20 years since the Cave Creek disaster that claimed 14 lives. Thirteen Tai Poutini Polytechnic outdoor recreation students and a Department of Conservation officer died when a DoC viewing platform collapsed into a… ...
    15 hours ago
  • The X Factor NZ: Back to black
    This week was yet another reminder that beneath a thin veneer of order, chaos still reigns at X Factor NZ. X Factor's Steve Broad. Photo: The X Factor NZ With the announcement this week that Dominic Bowden… ...
    15 hours ago
  • Envirologue: Too Big to Fail – Why National will Never Act on Climate Cha...
    Californians, withering in the worst drought in the state’s history, are being exhorted to leave their urine standing in the toilet, to keep their showers shorter than five minutes and to replace their lawns with rocks and cacti. Meanwhile, figures… ...
    16 hours ago
  • More thoughts on Light Rail details
    On the closed session agenda for tomorrow’s Auckland Transport board meeting is an item asking for a decision about Light Rail. Hopefully this will see the project move forward and the public provided with more information. With that in mind… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Questions and Answers – April 28
    Press Release – Office of the Clerk 1. CHRIS BISHOP (National) to the Minister of Finance : What reports has he received about lower than expected inflation in New Zealand?Questions to Ministers Inflation—Reports 1. CHRIS BISHOP (National) to the… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    17 hours ago
  • The “I” factor in political practice
    When is a Prime Minister a political person and when the voice of the nation? Opening the Pukeahu National War Memorial Park in Wellington on April 18, John Key said: “I feel proud of the decision to make Pukeahu… ...
    Colin JamesBy Colin James
    19 hours ago
  • A Programme of Phased Cuts in Company Tax
    Column – ACT New Zealand Over-taxing mobile capital is not a good idea not if you want jobs and higher wages anyway. Last week the ACT Leader announced a plan for a programme of phased reductions in the company… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    20 hours ago
  • Trade Minister Cheers Big Corporation Over Ordinary People
    Press Release – New Zealand First Party Trade Minister Tim Grosers cheerleader role for the United States to speed up the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement is worrying, says New Zealand First Trade Spokesperson Fletcher Tabuteau.Trade Minister Cheers Big Corporation Over… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    23 hours ago
  • My other grandfather
    I have been stuck at home for several days, and so the build-up to Anzac day has been reduced for me to a series of media impressions. Fragmentary ones at that, as I actively tried to avoid the coverage. The… ...
    Bat bean beamBy Giovanni Tiso
    24 hours ago
  • US: the state’s systematic violence kills another young black man
    Freddie Gray: brutally murdered by Baltimore cops by The Spark A young man is dead in Baltimore, killed by six murdering cops. In the same week, a murdering cop goes free in Chicago when a prosecutor and a judge tie… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    24 hours ago
  • Questions For Oral Answer April 28
    Press Release – Office of the Clerk 1. CHRIS BISHOP to the Minister of Finance: What reports has he received about lower than expected inflation in New Zealand? QUESTIONS TO MINISTERS 1. CHRIS BISHOP to the Minister of Finance: What… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Hobbling Democracy: TPPA and The Covenant of Secrecy
    Opinion – Binoy Kampmark The TTIP and TPPA, both sounding like ominous injections of political disaster, continue their march towards belittling, and corroding the democratic content of its participating countries. The holder of the needle remains US President Barack Obama,… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • The Decline and Fall of the United States | David Swanson
    Opinion – David Swanson After a speech I gave this past weekend, a young woman asked me whether a failure by the United States to properly surround and intimidate China might result in instability. I explained why I thought the… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Fearing the loss of Hegemony: The Concept of US Retreat
    Opinion – Binoy Kampmark Nothing upsets those drunk on imperialist virtue than the fact it might end. Such romances with power do have a use-by-date, going off like old fruit. Eventually, the crippling contradictions will win through in the end.… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Strong Support for Clarification of GMO Council Jurisdiction
    Press Release – GE Free NZ On Friday, 24 April GE Free Northland and the Soil & Health Association of NZ with 19 other 274 parties sought clarification in the Environment Court on whether there is jurisdiction in the Resource… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Should Environmentalists Care About Poverty?
    Perhaps heightened by the leadership contest in the Green Party, there appears to be a debate going on about where environmentalism fits into the political spectrum. I am not a member of the Green Party (nor any other, for that… ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • Inoculating against science denial
    Science denial has real, societal consequences. Denial of the link between HIV and AIDS led to more than 330,000 premature deaths in South Africa. Denial of the link between smoking and cancer has caused millions of premature deaths. Thanks to… ...
    1 day ago
  • A year ago today – Auckland’s first electric trains
    A year ago today transport in Auckland was forever changed as the first electric trains started carrying passengers – although they didn’t start running in normal service till the following day. Electrifying Auckland’s rail network is something that had been… ...
    1 day ago
  • Media Link: Anzac Day panel on future conflicts.
    Commemorations of the 100th anniversary of the ill-fated assault at Gallipoli prompted Radio New Zealand to convene a special panel on the evolution and future of conflict since those tragic and futile days in 1915. I was invited to participate… ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Australian cops shut down Aboriginal Anzac Day march
    The article below deals with the erasing of the Frontier Wars in Australia.  Something similar has happened in relation to the Land Wars in New Zealand.  The wars of conquest and confiscation of Maori land are totally eclipsed by carefully-constructed… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • After World War 1: the horrors of peace at home (Australia)
    The small number of people involved in Redline means we simply don’t have the possibility to cover everything we’d like to.  This includes some very important stuff.  For instance, an article about what NZ soldiers came home to, an equivalent… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Anzac Day II
    I spent a couple of hours at our local RSA on Saturday. It was well past the traditional solemnity of the morning, well into the drinking. The old fellows drank like soldiers and the soldiers, there in their uniforms, with… ...
    2 days ago
  • Pony-tails, panic and PR spin.
    How Crosby-Textor propose to rescue Key from the fall out over his casual Pony-Tail stroking.Rumour has it that the Crosby-Textor spin machine that elevated John Key to the leadership of the National Party and thence to Prime Minister of NZ… ...
    the Irascible CurmudgeonBy Alan Papprill
    2 days ago
  • Poor peer review – and its consequences
    See below for citations used The diagram above displays links between the journal, editors and reviewers in the case of the paper Malin & Till (2015). I discussed these links before in Poor peer-review – a case study  but thought… ...
    2 days ago
  • Capture: April Come She Will
    Over the month of April I've started a number of threads, but not quite found the time or inspiration to reach a critical mass.Looking back though, it was a fairly packed month, as we ease our way into autumn.So here's… ...
    2 days ago
  • Has John Key tugged off more than he realises?
    John Key's pony-tail-gate controversy seems to have divided people into two camps. The vast bulk of New Zealanders (to purloin a Key-ism) can agree on the fact that it's weird... and out of order. But then there are those who… ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    2 days ago
  • Rodney Hide: They’re all after me, man…
    The state apparently has me under covert investigation. It all started a couple of weeks ago when I was followed home by some guy in a long coat and dark glasses. It was 27 degrees and cloudy. My friends have… ...
    My ThinksBy boonman
    2 days ago
  • The road to Mike Hosking, vilifier of young women
    Some of us have always seen radio announcer Mike Hosking as a puffed-up little prat. I was there at Broadcasting House when this shortish young guy with a big voice and a very strange manner arrived in the Network Newsroom.… ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    2 days ago
  • Hey RaboDirect, if Mike Hosking’s selling you, I’m not buying.
    A nasty side of radio announcer Mike Hosking spilled out into view last week as he ‘bashed’ the victim of John Key’s serial bullying. Hosking, supported by TVNZ’s OneNews, sponsored by RaboDirect, vilified the waitress whom the Prime Minister admits… ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    2 days ago
  • Is Auckland boring enough?
    Via Jarrett Walker, I recently ran across a provocative article by Aaron Renn in the Guardian: “In praise of boring cities“. Renn takes his fellow urbanists to task for the narrowness of their vision about what makes a good city:… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    2 days ago

  • More hype and half-truths from Coleman
    The rising incidence of rheumatic fever has nothing to do with ‘families having a better understanding of the disease’ as the Health Minister wants us to believe but everything to do with his failure to address the root causes of… ...
    7 hours ago
  • Regional air routes must be maintained
    The Government must use its majority shareholding to make sure Air New Zealand cooperates with second tier airlines stepping into the regional routes it has abandoned, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Air New Zealand’s cancellation of its Kaitaia, Whakatane,… ...
    10 hours ago
  • Action needed on decades old arms promise
    Nuclear weapons states must honour the unequivocal promise they made 45 years ago to disarm, says Labour’s Disarmament Spokesperson Phil Goff. Mr Goff is attending the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference at the United Nations in New York. ...
    11 hours ago
  • Worker safety top of mind tomorrow and beyond
    Workers’ Memorial Day, commemorated tomorrow, is both a time to reflect and to encourage a better safety culture in all workplaces, says Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway.“On Worker’s Memorial Day, working people across New Zealand will remember those… ...
    1 day ago
  • Communities forced to stomach water woes
    Confirmation by Health Minister Jonathan Coleman that he is to wind up a water quality improvement scheme will leave thousands of Kiwis with no alternative but to continue boiling their drinking water, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. The Drinking… ...
    2 days ago
  • Labour calls for immediate humanitarian aid for Nepal
    The Government should act immediately to help with earthquake relief efforts in Nepal, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “The Nepalese Government is appealing for international assistance following yesterday’s massive quake. The full impact is only now being realised… ...
    2 days ago
  • New holiday reflects significance of Anzac Day
    Anzac Day now has the full recognition that other public holidays have long enjoyed, reflecting the growing significance it has to our sense of identity and pride as a nation, Labour MP David Clark says.“The importance of the 100th Gallipoli… ...
    2 days ago
  • Housing crisis hurting export growth
    If Steven Joyce wants to revive his failing export growth target he needs to make sure the Government gets to grips with the housing crisis, says David Parker, Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson. “Our exporters are struggling to compete… ...
    4 days ago
  • Gallipoli’s lesson: never forget, never repeat
     A special monument to one of our greatest war heroes should be a priority for the new Pukeahu National War Memorial Park, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “This will honour the spirit of Lieutenant Colonel William Malone, who led 760… ...
    4 days ago
  • Minister for who? Women, or Team Key?
    Louise Upston yesterday broke her silence on John Key’s repeated unwanted touching of a woman who works at his local café, to jump to the defence of her Boss. Upston repeated Key’s apology but, according to media reports “she refused… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    5 days ago
  • Taxpayer bucks backing US billionaire
    Kiwis will be horrified to know they are backing a Team Oracle subsidiary owned by a US billionaire, Labour’s Sports and Recreation spokesperson Trevor Mallard says. It has been revealed today that a Warkworth boat building company, which is wholly… ...
    5 days ago
  • English’s sins of omission: ‘Nothing left to be done’ on housing
    When Bill English said ‘there is nothing left to be done’ on the Auckland housing crisis he had overlooked a few things – a few things, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says.  “He’s right if you ignore: ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate change now hurts Kiwis
    Kiwis have twice been given timely and grave warnings on how climate change will hit them in their hip pockets this week, says Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods.  “The first is the closure of the Sanford mussel plant and the… ...
    5 days ago
  • Clean, green and chocolate!
    Like many people I absolutely love chocolate! But until recently I hadn’t given much thought to how it was grown and produced. Fair trade and ethical food production are core Green Party principles, so yesterday Steffan Browning and I were… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    5 days ago
  • National admits loan shark law not up to it
    National has admitted new laws to crack down on loan sharks, truck shops and dodgy credit merchants aren’t up to the task of protecting vulnerable consumers, Labour’s Commerce spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “Paul Goldsmith has acknowledged the laws might just… ...
    5 days ago
  • Power and the Prime Minister
    I’d like to acknowledge the young woman* who has publically told her story. It was a very brave thing to do. She kept her story very simple and focussed on her experience of what happened. It told of unwanted attention… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    5 days ago
  • Extra holiday offers time to reflect
    The Mondayisation of Anzac Day provides New Zealanders with an opportunity to spend more time with their families and their communities, Dunedin North Labour MP David Clark says. “This is the first time legislation I introduced, to have Anzac and… ...
    6 days ago
  • More angst and anguish for red zone locals
    Local residents will be bitterly disappointed by the Government’s cherry picking of the Supreme Court’s decision regarding compensation for red zoned property owners, Labour Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson and Port Hills MP Ruth Dyson says. “Home owners have taken all… ...
    6 days ago
  • Australia shows why we need a sovereign wealth fund now
    Australia has not managed its great mining boom well, says HSBC’s chief economist for Australia and New Zealand, Paul Bloxham. When times are good, governments need to save for the bad times that will inevitably follow, and this can be… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    6 days ago
  • Pure Water- pure rip off
    New Zealanders’ rights to fresh water must be protected before commercial allocations are given, but the Government is allowing resources to be taken, says Kelvin Davis MP for Te Tai Tokerau.  “The Government needs to resolve the issue of water… ...
    6 days ago
  • Cabinet paper reveals weak case for Iraq deployment
    A heavily redacted copy of a Cabinet paper on New Zealand’s military deployment to Iraq reveals how weak the case is for military involvement in that conflict, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  The paper warns that given the failure… ...
    6 days ago
  • Malaysia’s booty is Kiwis’ lost homeownership dream
    It’s unsurprising the Auckland property market is so overheated when Malaysians are being told they can live large on Kiwi’s hard-earned rent money, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “A Malaysian property website lists nearly 4000 New Zealand houses and… ...
    7 days ago
  • Ministry’s food safety resources slashed to the bone
    The Ministry for Primary Industries’ failure to monitor toxic and illegal chemicals in red meat is a dereliction of duty, Labour’s Primary Industries and Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “MPI compliance officer Gary Orr today admitted National’s much-vaunted super… ...
    7 days ago
  • Ministry must protect organic food industry
    The Ministry for Primary Industries must take urgent action to protect New Zealand’s $150 million organic food and beverage industry by establishing a certification regime, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Despite working with Organics Aotearoa on the issue… ...
    1 week ago
  • Tony Abbott, indigenous rights, and refugees
    This week, Tony Abbott has visited Aotearoa New Zealand, bringing with him his racist policies against indigenous Australians and his appalling record on refugee detention camps. Abbott has launched a policy “to close” remote aboriginal communities, which is about as… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • PM’s housing outburst bizarre
    Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford has described the Prime Minister’s latest comments on the Auckland housing crisis as bizarre. “John Key is deep in denial. He must be one of the only people left who are not concerned about the risk… ...
    1 week ago
  • Deflation: Another economic headache linked to housing crisis
    National’s housing crisis is causing even further damage with the second consecutive quarter of deflation a genuine concern the Reserve Bank can do little about, as it focusses on Auckland house prices, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This is… ...
    1 week ago
  • Pot calling the kettle black over fossil fuel subsidies.
    Over the weekend alongside nine other countries the New Zealand Government has endorsed a statement that supports eliminating inefficient subsidies on fossil fuels. Fossil fuel subsidies are a big driver of increasing emissions. Good on the Government for working internationally… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    1 week ago
  • At last – a common sense plan for Christchurch
    The Common Sense Plan for Christchurch released by The People’s Choice today is a welcome relief from the shallow debate about rates rises versus asset sales, Labour’s Christchurch MPs say. "Local residents – who have spent weeks trawling through the… ...
    1 week ago
  • National must lead by example on climate change
    The National Government must meet its own climate change obligations before it preaches to the rest of the world, Labour's Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods says. "Calls today by Climate Change Minister Tim Groser for an end to fossil fuel… ...
    1 week ago
  • Biosecurity rethink a long time
    The Government has opened New Zealand’s borders to biosecurity risks and its rethinking of bag screening at airports is an admission of failure, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. Nathan Guy today announced a review of biosecurity systems in… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Chinese rail workers must be paid minimum wage
    KiwiRail must immediately stop further Chinese engineers from working here until they can guarantee they are being paid the New Zealand minimum wage, Labour’s MP for Hutt South Trevor Mallard says. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment today released… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Better consultation needed on Christchurch asset sales
    The Christchurch City Council (CCC) should be promoting wide and genuine public consultation on its draft ten year budget and plan given the serious implications for the city’s future of its proposed asset sales, outlined in the plan. Instead, it… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    2 weeks ago
  • No more sweet talk on obesity
    The Government should be looking at broader measures to combat obesity rather than re-hashing pre-announced initiatives, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says.  “While it is encouraging to see the Government finally waking from its slumber and restoring a focus on… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government two-faced on zero-hour contracts
    The Government should look to ban zero-hour contracts in its own back yard before getting too high and mighty about other employers using them, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Information collated by Labour shows at least three district health… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Scrutiny of battlefield deaths should continue
    As New Zealand troops head to Iraq under a shroud of secrecy, the Government is pushing ahead with legislation to remove independent scrutiny of incidents where Kiwi soldiers are killed in hostile action overseas, Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff says.… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Damp-free homes a right for tenants
    Labour is urging tenants to use a little known rule which gives them the right to live in damp-free rental homes. Otago University researchers have today highlighted the Housing Improvement Regulations 1947 as a way tenants can force landlords to… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National must take action on speculators
    The Government must take action on property speculators who are damaging the housing market and shutting families and young people out of the home ownership dream, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “There are a number of options the Government could… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Milk price halves: A $7b economic black hole
    Global milk prices have halved since the peak last year, creating an economic black hole of almost $7 billion that will suck in regions reliant on dairy, crucial industries and the Government’s books, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kitchen plan set to swallow up health boards’ funds
    The financial impacts of implementing a proposal to outsource hospital food, forced on them by a crown-owned company which is now facing an auditor-general’s inquiry, are being felt by district health boards across the country, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Reserve Bank scathing of Government
    The Reserve Bank’s most scathing critique to date of National’s inability to handle the housing crisis shows the Bank is sick of having to pick up the pieces, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “John Key continues to deny there is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for McDonald’s to upsize work hours
    Labour is calling on McDonald’s to have more respect for their workers and offer them more guaranteed work hours. McDonald’s is proposing to guarantee its workers 80 per cent of their rostered hours, Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Brownlee misses the boat on asbestos
    Gerry Brownlee has once again missed an opportunity to improve the lives of Cantabrians post-earthquakes, Labour’s Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson Ruth Dyson says. A new report from the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser,… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government must come clean on troop deployment and protections
    New Zealanders deserve more than to hear about their troops’ deployment overseas from Australian media, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “News from Australia that Kiwi troops are on their way to Iraq this week is another example of the culture… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Cancer prevention calls gain momentum
    Research showing bowel cancer treatment sucks up more public health dollars than other cancers once again highlights the need for a national screening programme, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A study by Otago University, which found colon cancer is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Burger King shows zero-hour contracts not needed
    The abandonment of zero-hour contracts by Burger King is further evidence good employers do not need to use them, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway says. "Congratulations to the Unite Union and Burger King for settling an employment agreement… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwis deserve more than reheats
    The Government looks set to rely on regurgitated announcements for this year’s Budget if today’s speech is anything to go by, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “National has been building up to this Budget for seven long years, promising a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Landlords not cashing in on insulation schemes
    The fact so few landlords have taken up the generous taxpayer subsidy for retrofitting shows it is time to legislate minimum standards, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “Many landlords aren’t using Government insulation schemes because they don’t want… ...
    2 weeks ago

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