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“He Toki Huna New Zealand In Afghanistan” – Maori TV

Written By: - Date published: 8:49 am, April 25th, 2013 - 34 comments
Categories: accountability, afghanistan, International, Maori Issues, news, spin, us politics, war - Tags: , , ,

Last night Maori TV screened an excellent documentary He Toki Huna New Zealand in Afghanistan (by Kay Ellmers and Annie Goldson).  It is now available for viewing on Maori TV’s website.

It explores the role of NZ in Afghanistan, particularly through following the investigations of jounrlait Jon Stephenson.  The camera goes with him around the streets and in the living areas in Afghanistan. It looks beyond the US-supporting government PR.  Afghanis tell of exactly how useful they see the role of the Kiwi forces there.

The documentary is as much about investigative journalism as it is about Kiwis in Afghanistan.  Mike McRoberts talks in a low key, down-to-earth way about Jon Stephenson’s work and about travelling with the NZ services in Afghanistan.  Nicky Hager and other Kiwis provide commentary in between the footage shot in Afghanistan: footage that tends to have the raw immediacy of foreign correspondents, following the story in the field.

Sally Woodfield provides a review and some background to the documentary in this Scoop article.

He-Toki-Huna-military-425wide

Scoop article caption: “The SAS on patrol somewhere in Afghanistan during the making of the documentary He Toki Huna. Image: Lionel de Coninck”

Commissioned by Māori Television and directed and produced by award-winning filmmakers Annie Goldson (Brother Number One, An Island Calling) and Kay Ellmers (Canvassing the Treaty, Polynesian Panthers) through Occasional Productions, the documentary gives an overview of the engagement, and backgrounds some of Afghanistan’s turbulent history to provide context to the post 9/11 invasion.

Dr Goldson said the documentary sheds light on our recent past and holds valuable lessons for the future.

“By joining in the war post-911, have we been ‘good global citizens’ fighting the good fight against international terrorism? Or did New Zealand enter into an alliance that has meant our soldiers have been actively and militarily involved in a complex conflict that most of us know little about and have not agreed to participate in?” …

Māori Television general manager of programming Haunui Royal said He Toki Huna: New Zealand in Afghanistan is an important documentary that all New Zealanders should see.

Powerful reminder
“We hope that it will generate meaningful discussion and encourage Kiwis to talk about the reasons behind New Zealand’s decision to send troops to Afghanistan.

“Many of those who died while serving in Afghanistan were Māori so the documentary will also serve as a powerful reminder of the huge sacrifices our soldiers and their whanau have made over the past 10 years.”

Well worth a watch.  I will view it more than once, as an example of, by and about excellent Kiwi journalism.

34 comments on ““He Toki Huna New Zealand In Afghanistan” – Maori TV”

  1. Paul 1

    I agree- an excellent documentary. It’s heartening to see such great journalism still.
    Does anyone know if it can be purchased?

  2. ianmac 2

    Sobering but a must watch. Probably there has always been a gap between the image for the home audience and the grim reality. But you weep for the people of Afghanistan.

  3. Morrissey 3

    He Toki Huna: New Zealand In Afghanistan
    by Kay Ellmers and Annie Goldson

    Maori Television, 8:30 p.m., Wednesday 24 April 2013

    Some impressions and jottings from a cursory first viewing….

    1.) Instead of the usual assortment of political deadbeats, professional time-servers, paid liars and mealy-mouthed “comedians” that usually comment on our “involvement” in Afghanistan, this documentary went to people who really know what they are talking about. So during the hour, we were privileged to hear the insights of such people as James Fergusson, the author of an acclaimed history of the Taliban; Donald Matheson, senior lecturer in journalism at Canterbury University; journalists Nicky Hager, Jon Stephenson, Mike McRoberts and Ali Safi; and even the odd honest New Zealand soldier, namely the Army patrol man Alpha Kennedy.

    2.) Of course, to balance out the rigorous analysis and honesty, Goldson presented us with a gruesome line-up of liars and scoundrels, but they were shown up for what they are, rather than being treated seriously as they usually are in the obedient corporate media. These liars and scoundrels included: the new NZ Defence Force chief Dave Gawn; the “civilian director” of the Provincial Reconstruction Team, Richard Prendergast; U.S. General John R. Allen; NZ Chief of Defence Rhys Jones; former Defence Minister Wayne “Inane” Mapp; Commander Shaun Fogerty of the NZDF; and “Not So Honest” John Key.

    3.) Nicky Hager revealed a leaked internal memo that set out the government’s and army’s PR strategy: “simply repeat at all times that we are not going to war in Afghanistan, we are going there to assist in reconstruction.”

    4.) When NZDF chief Dave Gawn was confronted with this, he blithered: “I’m not familiar with the document he’s talking about. But consistent messages are important. Otherwise you’re all over the show.”

    5.) Jon Stephenson actually did something radical: he went out and interviewed some Bamiyan locals. Their responses completely undermine what our Government and Army officials have been saying for ten years. While the Hazara people in Bamiyan acknowledge the NZ soldiers have done some effective security work, they dismissed the idea that the Kiwis have done any useful reconstruction—which is what they are supposed to be doing there. The verdict of the young men being interviewed: “It’s a joke. Their reconstruction efforts were of no use.” ….. “They built my school, badly. It’s falling down already.” The projects were damned as piecemeal, and amateurish.

    6.) New Zealand soldier Alpha Kennedy: “We have to ask ourselves: would we tolerate the presence of foreign soldiers in New Zealand? The Afghan resistance is very similar to the Maori tribes fighting the British invaders in the nineteenth century.”

    7.) Mike McRoberts: “Our presence in Bamiyan attracts resistance. We draw fighters into Bamiyan by the very fact we are there.”

    8.) Television footage of street demonstrations following the Qu’ran burnings by U.S. troops. Major General Gawn has an answer ready: “There are a hundred thousand American troops in Afghanistan. There will always be a few bad apples.” Gen. John R. Allen tries to muster up every bit of gravitas he can as he assures the U.S. television audience that those responsible for the Qu’ran burnings “will be tracked down.”

    9.) The Taliban are far more popular than the foreign press would have us believe. Even the many Afghans who do not care for the Taliban admire them for taking the fight to the occupation forces. Even in Kabul, support for the Taliban is open and widespread. Major General Dave Gawn acknowledges the frustrations of fighting against guerrillas: “They are an insurgency. They don’t wear a uniform. They live amongst the population.” Such frustration was also voiced by the Germans in Yugoslavia in the 1940s, by the Americans in South Vietnam in the 1960s, and the Russians in, errrr, Afghanistan in the 1980s.

    10.) Nicky Hager: “The Taliban is the name for anyone who doesn’t like us.”

    11.) Footage of Rhys Jones and Wayne “Inane” Mapp blithering confusedly about SAS troops being there to “mentor” the Afghan “forces”, and then being immediately undercut by the infamous photo of Willie Apiata and an SAS comrade striding through Kabul, with guns smoking. Commander Shaun Fogerty sounds off about the publication of the photo: “very disappointing.”

    12.) New Zealand has little history of journalists confronting official lies. Nicky Hager: “The ideology of the heroic soldier is almost beyond question. To even question the mission—not the soldiers, but the mission—is heresy.”

    13.) The documentary effectively and damningly shows the hurried official attempt to cover up the truth of the botched mission that led to the death of SAS Corporal Douglas Grant. Lt. Gen. Rhys Jones comes across as particularly dishonest, but he is the embodiment of Truthfulness when compared to Prime Minister John Key, who reiterates obvious lies at a press conference, then refuses to answer any questions.

    14.) Another damning clip of Key, this time spinning his lies on TV One’s Breakfast programme, while interviewer Corin Dann sits mute and bewildered, as usual.

    15.) As the documentary nears its end, even Major General Dave Gawn allows himself to acknowledge reality: “I’d be very guarded about whether the insurgency is growing.”

    16.) James Fergusson: “We are pursuing exactly the same strategy as the Russians did.”

    17.) Donald Matheson: “It is the job of New Zealand journalists to help us work out what has happened.”

    18.) Jon Stephenson: “It’s the job of journalism to hold the powers-that-be to account.”

    19.) Interestingly, this documentary was preceded by a warning that it contained language that could offend. There was actually no swearing at all on the programme, so I presume this was a sly critique of what we were about to hear from Gawn, Jones, Allen, Prendergast, Fogerty, Mapp and Key.

    20.) I’ll leave the last word to an honest soldier, Alpha Kennedy: “The future is very, very grim.”

    • ghostrider888 3.1

      Thanks Morrissey; that is the Best precis of yours I have read yet; makes for “grim” reading indeed.

      • Morrissey 3.1.1

        Thank you, my friend. I thought the documentary was just excellent; I wonder if any other TV station will ever show it.

    • ianmac 3.2

      My summary of New Zealand In Afghanistan:
      The Russians came and when they went all hell let loose. Tribes fighting tribes . Mayhem.
      The Taliban asserted control Afghanistan style. Cruel but order restored.
      USA + allies invade. Taliban is the enemy and use arms that had been supplied by CIA . The population torn apart and punished by the bombs.
      NZ and other allies leave. Money dries up. Tribal forces rule.
      What will happen next?
      Chaos. The Taliban will step in and the awful cycle begins again

      • Morrissey 3.2.1

        Very good work, Ian. I disagree with just one thing: you write that the Taliban “will step in” once the “allies” leave. That implies that the Taliban is not already firmly in control of Afghanistan.

  4. Murray Olsen 4

    I was in Brazil when the government decided to commit to invading Afghanistan. I sent a few emails off to various politicians. In reply, I received one from Keith Locke’s deputy vice under temporary secretary acknowledging receipt of my message. I stated that I didn’t think we should be helping the Americans secure land to build a pipeline, that invading a country was not a proper response to an attack by a few fanatics who the Americans had used against Russia, and that the Taleban government had offered to turn Osama over for trial anyway.
    Helen Clark did not cover herself in glory by joining this adventure.

    • karol 4.1

      I remember going on the demonstrations in Auckland against Clark’s government committing to Afghanistan. The protest didn’t stop it happening.

      • Morrissey 4.1.1

        …demonstrations in Auckland against Clark’s government committing to Afghanistan.

        I think you meant to say “committing to the United States.”

        • karol 4.1.1.1

          Both – 2 in one. Committing to the US in Afghanistan… while the US moved on to Iraq.

  5. Wayne 5

    I realise that most people who read the posts here will have quite specific views of the reasons why New Zealand went to Afghanistan, but since I have had a direct involvement, and thus remain accountable I will give you my view.

    September 11was caused by Al Queada and their base was in Afghanistan. The Taliban Government was requested to remove them and turn over the leadership to US authorities. They were under clear notice that if they refused there was UN sanction to go and get them. As we know they did refuse and Afghanistan was invaded. New Zealand was involved from the outset.

    I recall Deputy Prime Ministers Andertons speech in Parliament in Sept 2001 committing New Zealands support. Given the history between the US and NZ (and I am not primarily considering the nuclear issue – the relationship is deeper than that) I do not think that NZ could have simply stood on the sidelines.

    Of course once the invasion had occurred and the Taliban government was removed, a new govt had to be established – not an easy task given the history of Afghanistan. This has all been authorised by UN resolutions. Could it have been done better – yes. The US diversion to Iraq meant the effort needed to successfully establish the new govt of Afghanistan during 2003 to 2007 did not really take place.

    ON my visits to the PRT it was obvious that NZ had not done enough civil aid work, yes some had been done, but soldiers are not really the best people to undertake long term reconstruction. Since 2008 permanent roads have been built linking the main towns, a hospital has been built, a Polytech has been built, and at long last permanent electricity systems are being established. Some of these things had started in 2007. Quite a lot of this has been done by partners, South Korea, Singapore and Saudi Arabia.There is now a lot more basic economic activity and more children go to school, basic health services are better. The Province has a vastly better infrastucture than ever before.

    Bamyan is mostly Hazara, and they have welcomed NZ, but the north east corner are Tajik and they have not. All our deaths have occurred up there. This will be a permanent challenge in Afghanistan, how to reconcile tribes that have historic deep enmities.

    The SAS contribution was to deal directly with establishing the authority of the central Govt. The prime way to do this was to train the Afghan Police Crisis Police Unit. This involved very comprehensive training, and effectively working directly with them on their missions in and around Kabul. That inevitably put the SAS in the direct line of fire and on occasion they had to take over the lead when events got too much for the less well trained CRU.

    Gen Mateparae and I knew that this would mean more SAS publicity than historically the case. The General authorised TV programmes on the SAS and also a book, so that New Zealanders had a better understanding of what the SAS does.

    As we know there were high profile events in Kabul and I gave interviews on all of them. It did not seem to me the option of “No Comment” would be credible, even though various defence commentators thought that should be the approach.

    When families have suffered the loss of a loved one they need to know what happened and how it happened. New Zealand needs to know that as well since service people serve on behalf of us all.

    As for the future of Afghanistan, well I don’t think the Taliban will simply takeover, but they will become involved in the governance. They seem to recognise they cannot be a base for international terrorists. Afghanistan will have a form of democratic govt supported financially for at least a decade to come. But is a tribal society and the tribes expect a large measure of local autonomy. It is also likely to remain a place where India and Pakistan will compete for influence and that will challenge stability in the region.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      You didn’t mention the major oil and gas pipelines planned to run through Afghanistan, needed to avoid routes involving Russia and Iran.

      Also that estimates suggested that there were 100 or fewer actual Al Qaeda operatives in Afghanistan, most of the other fighters involved were there for tribal or family reasons.

      September 11was caused by Al Queada and their base was in Afghanistan.

      Levelling those bases is what standoff weapons like cruise missiles are for.

      As for the future of Afghanistan, well I don’t think the Taliban will simply takeover, but they will become involved in the governance. They seem to recognise they cannot be a base for international terrorists.

      How much heroin was produced in Afghanistan in 2012? Where did the money go?

    • Morrissey 5.2

      Maybe you would like to comment on the documented instances of New Zealand soldiers being bullied and harassed by U.S. goons into handing over captives to possible torture and/or summary execution, in violation of international law.

    • karol 5.3

      You write as if you were a main player, giving statements to the press, yet speak here anonymously. Puzzling.

    • freedom 5.4

      Thank you Wayne,

      That is a very pro forma statement that unsurprisingly ignores nearly every major point of conflict in the story. CV raises perhaps the most important questions, regarding oil and opium. I would like to add one:

      Do you have a comment on the statement from former British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook that AlQaeda is little more than a fabrication of Government Intelligence Services and is controlled mainly by the CIA and its alphabet of international associates.

  6. Annie 6

    Maori TV have posted the film on their site and have the rights to show it 5 more times — we will at some point, release the film on DVD as it has strong educational potential. However, if I can eke out the time! we intend to edit a feature version for the NZ International Film Festival (about 70 mins). As always making documentary, one always has heaps of footage left on the cutting room floor and it would be good to incorporate more aspects of the story, and let it breathe a little more. TV tends to clip along at the faster pace while cinema can take its time.
    Thanks for all the support.

    • karol 6.1

      Thanks, Annie, for that info. A feature version would be great.

      The TV version is excellent and the release was very well timed.

  7. Wayne 7

    Karol, I understood that the readers of this site know that I am Wayne Mapp, given the nature of my previous contributions to various threads over the last twelve months and I certainly thought that you knew this. I have made it specifically clear in previous posts that I used to be the MP for North Shore.

    • Morrissey 7.1

      Good to see you on The Standard, Dr. Mapp. Now might be the perfect time for you to comment on the documented instances of New Zealand soldiers being bullied and harassed by U.S.soldiers into handing over captives to possible torture and/or summary execution, in violation of international law.

      • Wayne 7.1.2

        I have publicly spoken about this before. The NZ SAS protested about the treatment of the detainees by US forces (this was 2003 – I think). As I understand it this led to changes in procedures. The fact that NZ soldiers filed formal complaints reflected extremely well on them, they did not simply acquiesce in the situation.

        I would note that the documentary did not go over the material in the Metro article. Perhaps John Stephenson recognized that some of the material was wrong. For instance there was an allegation that NZ soldiers (in 2009 as I recall) handed detainees over to the Afghan police who were then mistreated by the Afghan police. The NZDF carefully checked this out (as with all the incidents in the article). NZ forces were not even in the area.

        It is possible that it was British SAS. Quite a number of NZ’ers have joined the British SAS, and the local Afghans could have thought it was the NZ SAS. John is heavily reliant on his Afghan sources, and as he said has had pretty limited resources, so it is a mistake that could easily occur. But this is really speculation on my part.

        The documentary relied pretty heavily on Nicky Hagars view of the Afghan situation. It is not a view held by successive NZ Govts. As I have stated, the Afghan Taliban Govt had the opportunity to hand over Al Quaeda, (or least facilitate their handover). This was a requirement of international law. Their failure to do so led to the invasion.

        And I don’t think cruise missiles would have worked. This had been tried by President Clinton and failed. As you saw with the Osama raid, success requires actual boots on the ground.

        Of course as Colin Powell has said “if you break it you have to fix it”. The Taliban Govt was removed by end of 2001. But a sustainable democratic Afghan Govt has been hard to achieve, given the history of the country.

        • Morrissey 7.1.2.1

          One would have thought that, as a cabinet minister, you would have acquired a degree of caution, and a modicum of judgement, and even a lick of common sense. I am sure that I am not the only person who will consider your choosing to quote someone as discredited as Colin Powell, and with apparent approval, as a troubling sign.

          I’ll deal with your claims about the SAS actions, or lack thereof, in detail later.

    • karol 7.2

      Thanks for clarifying, Wayne. Sorry I had missed picking up on your past references to your identity.

      Thanks for contributing your views on the issues.

    • lprent 7.3

      I’d have to admit that I wasn’t sure if you were “out” or not. I’ve seen you hinting at who you are and obviously I can see your e-mail*. We view that the only way that someone should or can be outed is if they explicitly do it themselves. So we act as if they have not until they explicitly out themselves.

      Anyhow, I’ll note that you’re now out with a semi-public handle.

      * At least until a certain bill gets close to passing in anything like its proposed form. At which point at an overseas server, the logs stop being collected. And all incoming and stored IP numbers and e-mail addresses get automatically and non-reversibly hashed. It will make it more of a pain administering this site as I’d have no idea who people are or where they’re coming in from. However it is a choice of doing that or having an essentially unconstrained anti-privacy law overriding our site rules. But you know that.. Right?

  8. ghostrider888 8

    US drone strikes make al-qaeda stronger.

  9. ianmac 9

    US drone strikes make al-qaeda stronger. ghostrider888
    And the awful truth is that distant pilots would never know what destruction they cause. Chilling.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Conduct a drone strike on a Khandahar village, then drive 15 minutes back home off base to have tea with the family and kids.

      That’s what I call civilised warfare.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 9.1.1

        Bzzt! Wrong.

        On top of being a war crime, drone strikes are a strategic blunder, but then US foreign policy has been a strategic blunder for decades.

  10. Peter Martin 10

    ‘September 11was caused by Al Queada and their base was in Afghanistan. The Taliban Government was requested to remove them and turn over the leadership to US authorities. They were under clear notice that if they refused there was UN sanction to go and get them. As we know they did refuse and Afghanistan was invaded. ‘

    Hmmm my recollection is along the lines that the Taliban were still engaged in the middle of a civil war against several remaining warlords and it is arguable,I think, that they were even in a position to hand over Bin Laden and his mates. However they did offer at least, if they could get them…to deliver them to a third country where due process of law could begin. In the first instance the Taliban wanted to see what evidence the US had that made Bin Laden guilty. I understand that at that stage..none was forthcoming from the US.

    As for the SAS ‘establishing the authority of the central Govt.’ I understand that Karzai would be lucky to have control over the suburb he lives in in Kabul.

    What a waste.

  11. George D 11

    Interesting comments from Wayne. I think that there was a fundamental failure of New Zealand to be able to understand the situation, and the consequent reliance on US intelligence and interpretations of that intelligence.

    This can be attributed in part to limited expertise in New Zealand on what Wayne notes is a complex part of the world that can be read in many different ways; and this in turn results from the parochialism and profit-focused nature of NZ universities, which have not been able to develop the comparable centres of expertise present in Australia, and a fundamental distrust within elite circles of critics and ‘outsiders’ with expertise.

    If NZ ever decides to invade Indonesia*, call me.

    *This is an impossibility, I’m joking.

  12. Jez 12

    Fascinating and brutally honest. It reminds me of NZs participation in the Vietnam war. I think we are here for the right reasons- to give the people a chance to have their voice heard

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    I have already shared two stories from psychology students about how the postgraduate allowance cuts have affected them. These stories demonstrate the widespread impact the changes are having. Here is yet another story I have received, this one giving the...
    frogblog | 17-04
  • Against secret "justice" in NZ
    Last year, in response to a series of court cases challenging its control orders or claiming compensation for human rights abuses by its intelligence services, the UK passed the Justice and Security Act 2013. The Act introduces a "Closed Material...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Massey chancellor sets up company in opposition to university
    Massey Chancellor Chris Kelly will chair the board of a company that intends to be New Zealand’s largest private training provider (PTE)...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Gibbs, Hayek, Canterbury and the free market for degrees
    The New Zealand Herald notes that philanthropist Alan Gibbs is about to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Canterbury today. One of the many institutions Alan Gibbs has donated his money to...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Record Store Day
    As readers will know, I have long embraced the internet music revolution. The ability to discover and download new things pretty much as they're being made has reinvented and refreshed my lifelong relationship with popular music. But I still really...
    Public Address | 16-04
  • Great Sorkin Parody
    Aaron Sorkin (SportsNight, The West Wing, The Newsroom) makes a very particular style of TV. Some good parts to that, some really silly parts. Amy Schumer' Comedy Central parody of Sorkin is pitch-prefect and hilarious. Enjoy: Inside Amy SchumerGet More:...
    Polity | 16-04
  • Photographic proof
    Deborah asked for a picture of my bicycle, after I wrote about it, and there is now one in existence which even includes me riding it along Mt Albert Rd, thanks to a dear friend who drove past me and...
    The Hand Mirror | 16-04
  • Our future lies in science
    This is not a column on global warming, climate change or whether humans are or aren’t having an impact....
    Pundit | 16-04
  • Gordon Campbell on drone strikes and Judith Collins‘ last stand
    Reportedly, US drone operators refer to their kills as “bug splat” – mainly because when the carnage is viewed on their screens thousands of kilometres away at home, it looks like an insect strike on a windscreen. The name has...
    Gordon Campbell | 16-04
  • Revealed: Steven Joyce’s select committee submission
    Dear Education Select Committee, Well, there are less than two weeks for people to get their submissions in to you on my proposals to remove staff and students from university and wānanga councils. You...
    TEU | 16-04
  • World News Brief, Thursday April 17
    Top of the AgendaTensions Rise in Ukraine’s East Ahead of Talks...
    Pundit | 16-04
  • Northern Europe looks to end fixed-term agreements for academics
    Long strings of fixed term employment agreements are not just a problem here in New Zealand but Sweden too, according to Education International. But the Swedish Association of University Teachers (SULF) has a plan to solve this. It is turning...
    TEU | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Date of Release: Thursday, April 17, 2014Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today.The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company, Christchurch Yarns, go into...
    First Union Media | 16-04
  • Collins: More contemptible lying
    Yesterday, Judith Collins treated New Zealand's media and people as if we were all complete fools. Here is what she said (via this morning's Herald): Ms Collins said she was unaware Oravida was having any problems getting its products into...
    Polity | 16-04
  • The Downside of Park and Ride
    Flicking back through older Atlantic Cities posts led to one from last year about Park and Ride catching my eye. It’s a fairly well reasoned cautionary tale which highlights the pitfalls and potential perverse outcomes from something that would appear...
    Transport Blog | 16-04
  • Heartland logic: More people have heard of Fidel Castro than Michael Mann, ...
    This is a guest post from Narahani.   Or is happening and is good for you, or has stopped happening, or is caused by CO2 but only a little, or is about to reverse due to lots of yet-to-be-discovered negative...
    Skeptical Science | 16-04
  • Submission
    Below is my draft submission on the Environmental Reporting Bill. I'm primarily interested in the freedom of information issues; I expect other groups to be focused on the reporting itself. I support the aims of the Environmental Reporting Bill of...
    No Right Turn | 16-04
  • Government’s ‘rock star economy’ throws hospital staff ou...
    The Public Service Association says administrative staff at hospitals around the country are missing out on Bill English’s ‘rock star...
    PSA | 16-04
  • Lip service: it’s all climate action ever gets from Key & Co
    As expected, the New Zealand government’s response to the IPCC’s Working Group 3 report on mitigating climate change pays lip service to the science, while maintaining that NZ is doing all that can be expected. Climate change minister Tim Groser’s...
    Hot Topic | 16-04
  • Storm fans fire service commitment
    Further damage from the huge storm that battered the West Coast was prevented by the great work of our volunteer Fire Service and locals will be extremely grateful, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “Our region has been...
    Labour | 19-04
  • Time for Ryall to fix mistakes and help families
    Families who won a long and lengthy Court battle for financial help to support their disabled daughters and sons are now facing a new battle with health system bureaucracy and need the Health Minister's help, Labour's Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Time for greater ministerial accountability
    The Green Party has today released a proposal to introduce a ministerial disclosure regime in New Zealand to improve the transparency and accountability of government.The proposal, based on the system used in the United Kingdom since 2010, would require all...
    Greens | 18-04
  • Power prices soar on the eve of winter
    On the eve of winter as New Zealanders are turning on their heaters, power prices have soared sky high, Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer says. “Energy Minster Simon Bridges claimed in Parliament that prices were estimated to rise 2.4 per...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Workers can kiss goodbye to Easter Sunday off
    The Government’s decision to “reprioritise” scarce labour inspector resources by abandoning the enforcement of Easter Sunday Shop Trading laws means workers can kiss goodbye to a guaranteed day off, says Labour’s Associate Labour Issues spokesperson Darien Fenton. “The Labour Minister...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Businesses need to respect workers this Easter
    Businesses intent on flouting Easter shopping laws should face stiff penalties, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today. This Easter, at least one major garden centre chain intends to open on Good Friday despite this being in breach...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney's Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members' ballot. “It’s time the Government acted in the interests of families,” Sue Moroney says. “National has tried every...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the price for Genesis far too low in a desperate attempt to beef up demand....
    Labour | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Associate Immigration spokesperson. “In the past 12 months, temporary...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Since 2009 resignation rates among sworn staff have...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand to revisit its decision to evict an essential community organisation in Christchurch with only eight weeks notice.Yesterday at the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence support services the organisation...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Auckland Council has implemented a by-law banning the use of psychoactive...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination after revelations that three out of seven properties sold in Wanganui tested positive for methamphetamine,...
    Labour | 17-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Before his departure, John Key said he would wait until all...
    Labour | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today.The report tabled in Parliament yesterday shows that total use of ozone depleting gases in New Zealand has...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.  ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Collins must admit misleading Parliament
    ACC Minister Judith Collins must front up and admit she has misled Parliament over ACC’s policy to stop paying compensation to clients who refused to fill in its privacy form, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Judith Collins claimed Labour...
    Labour | 16-04
  • English confirms he has no plan to raise wages
    Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed he has absolutely no plans to lift wages, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues, Andrew Little says. “Bill English told the Chamber of Commerce yesterday that workers could expect a rise in average income of...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Govt careless and callous about threatened birds
    The National Government is increasing the threat to two of the world's most threatened and unique birds by opening up Victoria Forest Park to petroleum drilling, the Green Party said today.Scientists have recently published a ranking of the 100 most...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Genesis: The biggest fire sale of them all
    National has finished its asset sales with a massive bonfire of a fire sale, showing once and for all how much of a disaster this programme was, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Just 68,000 Kiwis bought shares in Genesis,...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Interest rates rise but only smokes increasing
    Mortgage rate rises are making life harder for homeowners, and many of them will be surprised the latest CPI figures show inflation would be zero were it not for tobacco tax hikes, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “New Zealanders...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Term One Report Card for Hekia Parata
    Assignment Teacher’s Comments Grade      ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students but said nothing about it, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Exams are stressful enough...
    Labour | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    The ACC Minister needs to front up and explain what, if any, changes she has made to the broken culture of ACC rather than denying that she has any part to play in the dysfunction of her Ministry, the Green...
    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being adopted nationwide, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It is a massive victory for those in the...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Darien Fenton says. Due to speak to a cycling rally at...
    Labour | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour Leader Speech to the Institute of Directors 15 April 2014, Auckland It's a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of Directors has a proud history of developing New Zealand's...
    Labour | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy relationship between the National Party and this company, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Workers faced with redundancy at Canterbury Yarns need a redundancy support co-ordinator, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Last week, Canterbury Yarns was placed in receivership. Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have...
    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Tribute for Maungaharuru- Tangitu settlement
    Labour Member of Parliament for Ikaroa-Rāwhiti, Meka Whaitiri paid tribute to Maungaharuru-Tangitu today as their Treaty of Waitangi settlement became law. “The Bill acknowledges Treaty breaches that left Maungaharuru-Tangitu virtually landless. Today we were reminded of the history, mamae, loss...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Our government: still no idea
    Happy Easter everyone, bad weather aside. A previous post of mine was called “The Government with no ideas”.  Unsurprisingly, the theme of the piece was of a current government thoroughly absent of any creative ideas or solutions to assist more...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • 12 things Forbes has to say about NZs about to burst economic bubble
    Forbes is not known for their socialist or left wing activism, so when they predict a grim economic failure, we should should collectively poo ourselves a little. National often get given this perception that somehow they are better economic mangers....
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • That Sinking Feeling: Labour’s urgent need for persuasive words and coura...
    THE LATEST ROY MORGAN POLL has Labour on 28.5 percent (down 3.5 percent) and the Greens on 11.5 percent (down 1.5 percent). At 40 percent, the combined vote of the two main centre-left parties has fallen 5 percentage points since...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Why the Labour movement should support a Universal Basic Income
    The Mana movement’s support of the idea of a universal basic income is a welcome development. It could become one of the litmus issues that define the party and prove extremely popular. If Mana are in a position to do...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Legal high and cannabis regulation
    I marched through Henderson last month with my fellow Westies to express our concern about the impact of so called “legal highs” on our community. Some people chanted loudly calling for banning, some expressing anger at the parliamentarians who voted...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Know your Tory fellow travellers and ideologues: John Bishop, Taxpayers Uni...
    . . On 19 March, I reported on the Board members of the so-called “Taxpayers Union”. With one exception, every single member of the Taxpayers Union Board was a current (or recent) card-carrying member or supporter of the National and/or...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • GUEST BLOG: Daniel Bruce – Internet Party: What Seems Ridiculous To The O...
    Imagine you’re a 18-21 year old, from a working class family. You’ve never had a landline phone at home, because your parents can’t afford the fixed monthly bills, so everyone in your familiy has a pre-pay mobile phone. Because of the same tight...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release We don’t need any more official reports. We know the problem and we have the plans....
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release New Zealanders do not want asset sales and they do not want the Government wasting millions of dollars on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground Monday, 27 Aug 2012 | Press Release Instead of betting on a boom and bust industry and selling off assets the government needs to invest in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance Sunday, 26 Aug 2012 | Press Release It is not fair that many rich New Zealanders are cheating on their tax. National’s 2010 tax cuts, that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release In its rush to sell our assets, National has found itself in a crisis of its...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Privacy across all departments needs checking
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Privacy across all departments needs checking Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release “People don’t have a choice about giving their information to the state so the Government has an absolute duty to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Restoring public trust and confidence is an essential goal and will require very major change starting from the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government must front up on full costs of asset sales
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government must front up on full costs of asset sales Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release It’s time for the Government to front up over just how much these asset sales are...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Our society has never been as unequal as it is today. New research from the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release “It would be a shock for any other Government to introduce such a self-defeatist piece of legislation but unfortunately...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney’s Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members’ ballot. “It’s...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 | Press Release Christchurch cannot afford to lose this agency The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Resignation rates among cops soar The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Work visa problems need monitoring The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today. The report...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • The issues behind the possible MANA-Internet Party Alliance
      Last weekend Kim Dotcom spoke at MANAs AGM to discuss the possibility of the Internet Party and MANA Party working together to defeat John Key this election. As someone who knows both Hone and Kim, I have a unique...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Manufacturing Upgrade   Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.   – The claims and opinions...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Get work on 29th and the ANZAC spirit deserts the TPPA
      Groser and co would have been spitting tacks last week as the ANZAC spirit deserted the TPPA negotiations. Australia has done a deal directly with Japan which undercuts the demand for Japan to opening all agriculture in the TPPA....
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • No fracking solution to climate change
    Some British tabloids and oil lobbyists have jumped on comments made by an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author that fracking could play a role in addressing climate change as an argument for it here in Aotearoa, so is fracking...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: At Last: A Manufacturing Policy Date of Release:  Thursday, April 17, 2014 Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Drone murder of New Zealander “justified” by Prime Minister
    Yesterday Prime Minister John Key justified the extrajudicial killing of a New Zealander in a US drone strike in Yemen with a few cynical, callous words at a stand-up press conference. Key said he’d been briefed by our spy agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Secret Policeman’s Ball
      Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball is back in New Zealand for one night of some of the best stand-up comedy from both national and international comics The freedom to provoke and in some cases offend is essential to the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • A case study of racism by Police at Auckland Airport
    A couple of days ago I returned from Samoa after attending a family matter and some contract work. Spending a few days in the warmth of our homeland was welcome relief from the cold weather starting to make its presence...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • An acute shortage of emergency youth housing
    The housing crisis is effecting everyone in Christchurch but some are more vulnerable than others. Recently I attended a workshop on emergency youth housing hosted by the 298 Youth Health Centre, who I worked for from 2001-2003. Over fifty people...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Beyond the State – NZ State Houses from Modest to Modern
    As part of the our 'Active Hand of Government' series for 2014, we present Bill McKay, Senior Lecturer, School of Architecture and Planning, speaking to his new publication....
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress
    Global unions the ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) and IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural and Hospitality Workers) today applauded the steps forward made in preventing often shocking abuse of crews on fishing vessels in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Families before commerce at Easter
    Families before commerce at Easter The retail workers’ union has hit back at critics of New Zealand's modest Easter trading restrictions. "Some things are more important than going to the mall, and for just three and a half days each...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Easter trading laws archaic, in need of overhaul
    Press release: ACT New Zealand Easter trading laws are outdated and in need of a major overhaul, said ACT leader Jamie Whyte today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • ALCP welcomes Campbell Live poll result
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party welcomes last night's Campbell Live poll, saying it is an overdue reality check for public opinion on personal cannabis use....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Q+A This Week 20/4/14
    Q+A This Week SUNDAY 20 APRIL, 9AM ON TV ONE The latest on the US-NZ relationship from the US military’s top man in the Pacific, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear . Deputy Political Editor Michael Parkin asks him whether we’re allies,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Community detention for pokie theft
    A 67-year-old former company director, convicted of stealing pokie machine profits, was today sentenced to six months community detention, 160 hours of community work and ordered to make reparation of $6,000....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Waitangi National Trust Board Amendment Bill
    The Māori Affairs Committee is inviting public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 14 May 2014....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Collaboration stops drugs from crossing borders
    Collaboration between Hong Kong and New Zealand Customs has stopped millions of dollars worth of drugs coming into New Zealand this year, with a number of seizures and arrests in both countries....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Call for public enquiry into the future of farming
    Fish & Game NZ is calling for a public enquiry “to examine the future of agriculture in New Zealand”....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Comment on Labour Policy Announcement by NZMEA President
    “This policy release from the Labour Party is so important that if it becomes government policy it would define a shift in New Zealand’s culture,” says Brian Willoughby President of the NZMEA and Managing Director of Plinius Audio and Contex...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Manufacturing policy makes sense but….
    On the surface much of Labour's prescription for manufacturing is sound though questions remain over some of the detail not yet announced, the Employers and Manufacturers Association says....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Where Are The 15,000 Jobs?
    “Paula Bennett is today proudly telling New Zealand that beneficiary numbers have decreased by 15,000 in the past year. There is no proud declaration that 15,000 jobs have been created in the same period,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty spokesperson,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Change of approach to government procurement needed
    The rail engineering industry has been totally let down by National’s lack of manufacturing policy, and Labour’s measures outlined today represent a marked shift in approach to supporting domestic industries, the RMTU said today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Depreciation Policy Shouldn’t Be Just for Pet Industries
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Labour’s announcement to beef up rates of depreciation in the manufacturing sector, but is questioning why David Cunliffe is picking winners rather than applying the policy across all sectors. Jordan Williams,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • FIFA U-20 World Cup NZ 2015 Kick Off Times Announced
    An array of kick-off times to suit football fans of all ages has been confirmed for the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015. With 52 matches spread across the nation, the public will be able to enjoy a collection...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • “Legitimate purpose” provides no protection under 167 form
    On Radio New Zealand today, the Privacy Commissioner indicated that ACC could only request information that was "relevant" for a "legitimate purpose". His view was therefore that the ACC167 form is not a "blank cheque" or...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • State: still keeping you safe on the road this Easter
    The long-awaited Easter/ Anzac break is nearly upon us while the weather may have taken a turn for the worse in several parts of the country, many Kiwis will still be packing up their cars to take a road trip....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Govt plan for community input into residential red zone
    Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Governor-General to visit Turkey
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, is to visit Turkey next week to lead New Zealand’s representation at the annual Gallipoli commemorations....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority on the death of Adam Palmer while in Police custody found the actions of Police were justified during the arrest. The report also found that Police took all possible steps to try...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
    New boundaries for the country’s 64 General and seven Māori electorates have been finalised – with an additional electorate created in Auckland. The 2014 Representation Commission has completed its statutory role of reviewing and redrawing electorate...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
    Save the Children New Zealand welcomes a new treaty which allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
    Labour takes manufacturing seriously Manufacturing workers and employers will all benefit from economic policies announced today by the Labour Party leader, David Cunliffe. The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union has welcomed the announcement...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Manufacturing policy welcomed
    “Today’s announcement of Labour’s manufacturing policy is very welcome,” says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg. “Just as many other developed countries are realising, having a strong manufacturing sector pays off in good jobs, retaining...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Operation Unite – a Blitz on Drunken Violence
    New Zealand Police are hoping to reduce the number of victims from alcohol related crime by asking the public to say ‘Yeah, Nah’ more often this holiday weekend....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Dunne Speaks
    Dunne Speaks 17 April 2014 There have been a number of harrowing cases presented this week about the impact of psychoactive substances on vulnerable young people. At one level, the tales are deeply disturbing. It is awful to see anyone...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Research announcement welcomed
    A leading Māori researcher has welcomed the announcement of the 2014 Te Pūnaha Hihiko - Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund by Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce and Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    At Last: A Manufacturing Policy FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company,...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Republic campaigners still positive after royal visit
    "Campaigners for a New Zealand Head of State are still feeling positive after ten days of royal events" says NZ Republic Chair, Savage. "Our polling before the visit showed increased support for a kiwi head of state. We have a...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Selling homes to foreigners benefits New Zealanders
    Winston Peters has apparently convinced David Cunliffe that when foreigners buy New Zealand property they make New Zealanders worse off. Mr Cunliffe has announced his intention to adopt Winston Peters’ policy of banning foreigners from buying...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes Key’s Rejection of ‘Fat Tax’
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Prime Minister John Key’s rejection of fat and sugar taxes ahead of this year's election. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Union, says:...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Law Commission Paper on a New Crown Civil Proceedings Act
    The Law Commission has released A New Crown Civil Proceedings Act for New Zealand , its Issues Paper on reforming the Crown Proceedings Act 1950. The Issues Paper proposes a new statute to replace the Crown Proceedings Act 1950....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for NZ workers
    Maritime Union says focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for New Zealand workers...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Make the choice to stay safe on the road
    With Easter and Anzac Day giving us two successive long weekends this year there will be a lot of happy families preparing for trips....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Students Welcome Engagement with StudyLink
    The New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) has welcomed the improved performance from StudyLink in 2014. There is no doubt that getting their loans and allowances processed on time makes it easier for students to concentrate on being...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised
    Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised Imagine if you could not access vital news and information. What would you do?...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Public lose interest in this council, 2016 to be a watershed
    The second term Auckland Council is proving to be an interesting one and very different to the inaugural 2010 – 2013 Governing Body. We are currently going through a budget round to lock in where council’s $3b expenditure is directed...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour and National join forces in new Maori confiscations
    Chris McKenzie, former-treaty negotiator and Te Tai Hauauru Maori party candidate, says that the Minister of Primary Industries’ plans to remove temporary exemptions for vessel operators derived from settlement negotiations is akin to confiscation...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • The FCV Bill – Flagging 30 years of failures?
    Paying seafarers at least a minimum wage under the Minimum Wage Act 1983 has applied to the New Zealand fishing industry for more than 30 years. It was, and is, a basic protection which had two universals – it was...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014
    Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014 Kiwis across the country are getting together over a cuppa to make a difference in the lives of people living in poverty in the developing world. They’re getting involved in Oxfam’s Morning Tea, a fun and...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • 1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know How
    1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know Where to Go...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award
    Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third - The criteria for judging are by assessing the transnational (a corporation with 25% or more foreign ownership) that has the most negative impact in each or all of the following categories: economic dominance...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • ACC’s Strategy to stop compensation using ACC 167 Form
    On Radio NZ national’s morning report on 15 April 2014, ACC’s spokesperson Sid Miller denied the non-compliance was just a way for ACC to refuse people....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Workers support plain packaging of tobacco
    The CTU have today presented to the health select committee in support of plain packaging of tobacco. “Any steps that can be taken to lower smoking rates will result in New Zealand workers and their families having healthier and better...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Christchurch Housing Accord a Joke
    Christchurch Housing Accord a Joke Hugh Pavletich Performance Urban Planning Christchurch New Zealand 16 April 2014 The Housing Accord entered in to today between the Government and the Christchurch City Council, can only be described as a joke. Christchurch...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Infographic : World Giving Index 2013
    Infographic from Charities Aid Foundation World Giving Index 2013 A Global View Of Giving Trends (click to see full size version)...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Tranter questions CEO’s assurances
    “There is a bizarre notion among bureaucrats, politicians and others that if they say something then it must be so - despite all evidence to the contrary” said David Tranter, Health spokesman for Democrats for Social Credit....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • UNICEF NZ Urges Progress on Plain Packaging of Tobacco
    In its oral submission to the Health Select Committee today, UNICEF NZ expressed its strong support for the Smoke-free Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill as a measure that will help reduce the uptake of smoking, and urged parliament...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Whitebait partners look for solutions
    Waikato-Tainui, local marae, councils and agencies are working together to better manage whitebait fisheries at Port Waikato following the compilation of a new report....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
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