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Herald launches democracy under attack campaign

Written By: - Date published: 7:17 am, July 13th, 2013 - 142 comments
Categories: democracy under attack - Tags:

Five and a half years ago, Labour’s Electoral Finance Bill was subject to strong criticism, including from the Human Rights Commission, which said it was an unwarranted impingement on freedom of expression. The Herald launched its ‘Democracy Under Attack‘ campaign to drive Labour from office.

Now, the same voices, are coming out against Key’s GCSB law including the Human Rights commission, which says it is an unwarranted impingement on freedom of expression . I assume the Herald has launched a new ‘Democracy Under Attack’ campaign, they can even use the same front page again.

Of course, we won’t see the country’s principle paper ignore that John Key is creating a ‘turn-key totalitarian state’ and, instead, focus on self-referential rumours about the opposition leader, eh?

142 comments on “Herald launches democracy under attack campaign”

  1. rosy 1

    “. I assume the Herald has launched a new ‘Democracy Under Attack’ campaign, they can even use the same front page again.”

    It might not be an editorial, but the Herald has published Anne Salmond’s piece that is very strong about democracy under attack. Now for the Herald to wholly own it …

    In 2007, John Key, then Leader of the Opposition, gave a powerful speech to the New Zealand Press Club against the Electoral Finance Bill. He declared: “Here in New Zealand we often take our democratic freedoms for granted. We think they will always be there. We have a Bill of Rights which is supposed to protect our right to freedom of expression. What on earth could go wrong?…

    …Who could have imagined that in 2013, this same political leader would be presiding over an assault upon the democratic rights of New Zealanders? This is a matter of such gravity that last month, the Law Society felt impelled to report to the United Nations that in New Zealand “a number of recent legislative measures are fundamentally in conflict with the rule of law”.

    • burt 1.1

      …Who could have imagined that in 2013, this same political leader would be presiding over an assault upon the democratic rights of New Zealanders?

      It was only ever a matter of time. NZ.. the fastest law makers in the west…

      Parliament needs some constraint, it needed it under the last Labour government and it needs it now. Nothing will change while the political activists continue wasting all their energy on partisan politics supporting and defending this shit depending on the party flag colour.

      So we flip this government and elect a red one.. yeah… they behave for a term, perhaps 2… then they just turn self serving again and we biff them and elect a blue team… either way we still just get the fastest law makers in the west, real change is require.

      • rosy 1.1.1

        ” either way we still just get the fastest law makers in the west, real change is require.”

        So what is a ‘real change’ you would suggest/support? You complain an awful lot (especially about Labour, but I guess National is finally hitting the high notes for you) but I can’t recall you mentioning anything that should/could be done to strengthen our democracy.

        As for the EFA I think I recall that is was based on the Canadian electoral finance model – Labour didn’t just make it up.

        • burt 1.1.1.1

          There needs to be an upper house to constrain the fastest law makers in the west. Ironically the lovers of absolute power have no trouble convincing us w don’t need mor politicians ( to constrain them ) so we’ll probably be stuck with a half Westminster system for a while longer.

          • Matthew Whitehead 1.1.1.1.1

            I’d also settle for the Bill of Rights being sovereign over parliament, and some constraints on the ability to constantly skip select commitee hearings under urgency.

            • Tim 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Re the ‘urgency’ thing … I noticed a commenter on here come up with a brilliant idea – can’t remember who it was.
              Any legislation passed under urgency should have an 18 month expiry date on it.
              I’d actually prefer 12 months, but the idea is a good one.

              I reckon some sort of upper house formed from regional government areas and elected at local body election time might be in order – at least worth a try.
              This trend towards centralisation of power and trashing of grass roots democracy has to be reversed somehow.

          • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.1.2

            There needs to be an upper house to constrain the fastest law makers in the west.

            Doesn’t work as the upper-houses in the US and UK prove. All we’d end up with is two partisan houses.

          • rosy 1.1.1.1.3

            “There needs to be an upper house to constrain the fastest law makers in the west”

            I agree with Draco on that. I can’t see, for example, that the UK or US system have much to recommend them over our single house.

            I’d go for what Matthew said – Bill of Rights being sovereign over parliament. That, and beefing up the select committee process and severely restricting the justification for urgency would do the job, I reckon.

            Also controlled state funding of political parties, with no private slush funds.

            And parties that promote candidates that are more representative of the people they say they represent would help too. I do wonder if the pay increases to attract ‘quality’ candidates has led to ‘quality’ equating to rich and/or university-educated candidates pushing out other quality candidates. It could be a decent investigation to see if community stalwarts and activists who might do the job are pushed out by careerists and elitists.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 1.2

      But they do have an editorial about the government intrusions into law abiding kiwis doing cyber shopping !

      Apparently they think its not a good idea – but they have to tread carefully as of course , big advertisers will be lauding the governments proposals

    • weka 1.3

      “Dame Anne Salmond says it is imperative that New Zealanders stand up for democratic freedoms”

      Ae, but she doesn’t say how. No-one seems to know what to do.

      • Chooky 1.3.1

        Well at least it is a start, her speaking out.!…You seem to be Big on the idea of Plans Weka. ( a Weka bird plan collector?) Wekas are great collectors and they snuck out of the bushes and surprise you with what they scamper away with.

        Why always the interest in individuals’ plans when they speak out ?…..Would you support a plan if she suggested one?…or would you ‘dis’ it or her?…and shut her down?…..What is your plan exactly?…I would be interested to know…Is it to know other peoples plans?…and what then?…what do you plan to do with their plans?

        If people speak out, that is enough ( maybe they don’t have a plan)….If enough people speak out then a plan will evolve naturally…….And it will be the will of the people.

        Top down planning , imposed planning…..the need for planning and planning…..this is a male syndrome…. It stifles creativity and speaking from the heart…..which is real life and real democratic politics….

        • McFlock 1.3.1.1

          Plans are important.

          A realistic plan is the difference between wooing and just plain stalking.

        • RedLogix 1.3.1.2

          Wekas are great collectors and they snuck out of the bushes and surprise you with what they scamper away with.

          Hehe … very surprised on several occasions.

        • weka 1.3.1.3

          A plan, or a series of plans, well-thought out and developped would be a boon for the left, and NZ.

          But I wasn’t being nearly so ambitious (and bear in mind it’s you who brought up the idea of a plan). My plan for today, such as it is, is to decide if I should put a fair amount of effort into defrosting the pipes to get running water again, or wait for the weather to change and do it for me.

          Beyond that, I suppose I’m poking the ts community a bit to look beyond analysis to action. I’m feeling a fair amount of frustration at the amount of energy expended here talking about shit, but nothing being done. I think the posts and analyses here are valuable in and of themselves, educationally, making people think, challenging dominant narratives, etc and I’m sure that has some effect outside of this space. But it’s not enough given what we are facing.

          I wonder if it would be possible for some of the energy (knoweldge, experience, skill) on ts to be used to create action. For instance, the idea that people need to be engaged with democracy is well supported here. So can we use our commenting time here to develop actual strategies on how that could happen and even take them back to our communities?

          Draco suggested local bodies as one important focus. Given there are local body elections this year, how about brainstorming real world actions that will get more people voting from a well informed place.

          What other ways can NZers engage with democracy right now? Ideas like teaching civics in schools are great and should be developed, but we need to take actions now. The crisis is happening now.

          btw, my comments here are aimed at commenters, because I acknowledge that authors will write what they feel drawn to write. But I also see the potential for using blogging (here or elsewhere) and social media to initiate discussions that lead to concrete outcomes. The question here is given the shift in the last decade from face to face activism to being online, how can we mobilise and engage people in activism using internet spaces? (I’m not talking about things like signing online petitions in case that’s not clear).

          • lurgee 1.3.1.3.1

            What, you want people to stop engaging in endless internal factionalist strife and rather than complain about the lack of direction from above actually start telling those above what they want and how to go about making it happen?

            Behave like a movement of passionate, committed, intelligent, independent minds united by a common goal of improving our society?

            It’ll never catch on.

            • yeshe 1.3.1.3.1.1

              Good to remember our nuclear-free status began with some of us in Devonport posting simple A4 pages in our windows saying NO! to nuclear ships.

              Ripples are the promises the waves make to the flood.

      • Huginn 1.3.2

        a commitment to privacy and some awareness of the concept of data sovereignty, for a start

  2. Gruntie 2

    “He’s not the Messiah – he’s just a very naughty boy” – John Key’s mum

  3. burt 3

    Now, the same voices, are coming out against Key’s GCSB law including the Human Rights commission

    How incredibly frustrating it will be when the PM says – ‘Move on’ and all his partisan supporters agree the objectors just don’t know what they are talking about… call them full of shit and defend their team riding rough shod over democracy.

    This site was on the defending side when the Herald last did this, the attacking side this time. It’s like Kiwiblog and the standard just change chairs when the government changes…. nothing in government behaviours actually changes… the defenders become attackers, the attackers defenders and the same bullshit goes on.

    Just once… if you really want it to change… if you actually care about democracy rather than your team winning at any cost… evaluate the other teams position. If they are right then bite down on it and join them against your out of control party. Rather than put the partisan hat on and sell out defending this sort of shit because it’s your team in charge.

    All those who denigrated the Herald running this kind of thing during the EFA hang your heads in shame !

    • karol 3.1

      Burt, the EFA changes do not undermine democracy, but aimed to improve it.

      Now, when democracy is truly under attack, the Herald is lame, give or take an op ed piece or 2.

      • burt 3.1.1

        karol

        Burt, the EFA changes do not undermine democracy, but aimed to improve it.

        What sort of re-write is that.
        a) The EFA was happily dispatched by Labour once they were in opposition.
        b) Many of the same parties criticised it for being anti democratic.
        c) The best intentions of keeping Labour in power are not necessarily one in the same with the best intentions of democracy.

        Sure democracy is under attack now. Yes… It’s not the first time… perhaps it’s the first time you agree with the same people you have obviously written off if you can say “but aimed to improve it.”

        • mikesh 3.1.1.1

          The EFA was actually pretty innocuous. Allegations that it inhibited freedom of speech were grossly exaggerated, probably for political reasons.

          • Tigger 3.1.1.1.1

            +1 – it was anti-Left PR at its best.

            • burt 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Right, the human rights commission got it really wrong last time, so did the Herald I guess because Labour is good and they were jus being sensalationlist last time. But but but … They are correct and credible this time – right.

              • RedLogix

                The main reason why the anti-EFA sentiments got so much oxygen was that the big media players didn’t like the implicit restrictions on their election advertising income stream.

                The main reason why unrestrained govt collection and analysis of data, and the GCSB Bill has suddenly become news … is that the journos suddenly woke up to how it might impact their own lives.

                But otherwise as ak below has said…

              • Draco T Bastard

                burt, you’re bullshitting again.

              • The HRC was welcome to disagree with the EFA, but honestly their objections didn’t make a lot of sense to me, despite them usually having strong points on most anything they object to. There was probably a better way to implement some of the stuff the EFA tried to do, but it wouldn’t have turned us into the sort of totalitarian regime that right-wingers thought it would.

                • burt

                  The HRC was welcome to disagree with the EFA, but honestly their objections didn’t make a lot of sense to me…

                  That’s right dear… the silly HRC was just being naughty about a very fine law the Labour party wanted to pass so they could stay in power – tilting the playing field for the incumbent government isn’t anti-democratic when Labour do it…. Labour are good and they know what’s best for NZ – so much so that they can use urgency to kill off a court case against Dear Leader and that is good because it lets glorious Labour get on with running the show how they want to.

                  Nothing wrong with the government using parliament for it’s own best interests – it’s not like parliament and politicians are elected and employed to serve the people – hell no – they are there for themselves and it’s great when the RED team abuse their power in their own best interests.

      • r0b 3.1.2

        Burt is, as usual, the only one re-writing history here.

        When the HRC and other criticsed Labour’s Electoral Finance Act Labour’s response was to revise the Act to address the criticisms. (When National got in to power they tinkered with the Act, but left it largely intact, so much for democracy under attack).

        Compare and contrast with Key’s response to HRC criticism of his spying bill, which is to threaten the funding of the HRC.

        • burt 3.1.2.1

          Revise the act to address the criticism…. Right… Passing it under urgency with dozens of amendments denied the oxygen of another select committee… It had to be in place before election year because Labour needed as much help as it could get….

            • burt 3.1.2.1.1.1

              The EFA was passed under urgency with lots of protest from opposition parties and the public – you do remember this little point don’t you ?

              I kind of respect that from your perspective that democracy can only be under attack when it feels like it’s under attack to you personally – but really you need to separate your own opinion from the facts – tough for a non thinking supporter of a failed ideology who can’t seem to notice the ideology they follow has never ever worked anywhere ever – but give it a go… just think about what it might be like to actually look at things objectively rather than through the rose coloured lens of partisan stupidity. Try it – it might change your life.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Well, there was a lot of opposition from the opposition parties and newspapers but I don’t recall a lot of opposition from the people. Of course, what the people actually thought of it wasn’t reported upon – only what National and the newspapers thought of it.

                tough for a non thinking supporter of a failed ideology who can’t seem to notice the ideology they follow has never ever worked anywhere ever

                Actually, I think too much and the ideas I’ve put forward from that thinking worked fine in the 1930s when Labour did it. The problems came after when the capitalists took over the creation of money again.

                just think about what it might be like to actually look at things objectively rather than through the rose coloured lens of partisan stupidity.

                That’s what I do but it’s not what you do so I suggest you follow your own advice.

  4. Mary 4

    That bullish testosterone-filled voice Key has at times in the House – the same one he had when telling Dotcom, twice, “I know you don’t know”, really does it for me.

    • burt 4.1

      Your slip is showing.

      • Mary 4.1.1

        Ooh, say it to me again, big boy.

        • burt 4.1.1.1

          Only big for you Mary….

        • North 4.1.1.2

          Mary @ 4. – “That bullish testosterone-filled voice Key has at times in the House – ”

          I see what you’re getting at but I wouldn’t characterise that way. That implies a successfully delivered, pointed, naturally possessed, machismo.

          ShonKey Python is actually somewhat effete in his totality and if anything Dotcom came over as the big fulla in the select committee exchange…….ShonKey Python somewhat simpering and weak in response. Too chicken to engage maybe…….wonder why ?

          I watch Mr Akshully and I’m virtually never not reminded of the oft-expressed words of a friend whose first language is not English – “Dat Mitta Key tork lyka pit uva kerl…..”

          His antics in the House remind me rather of the guy who tries too, too hard to appear the big, natural leader type who’s also a bit of a joker. Assisted in that charade by the Colgate sparkles and thigh-slapping clamour of the delightedly squealing and posterior squiggling likes of Amy Adams and Tremain is it, seated directly behind him.

          In the same vein Lindsay Tisch. If ever there was such a thing as a massive yet silent, beetroot-faced, wobbling-jelly, suppressed orgasm, that poor wee man defines it.

          I grant that all of the above, while being truly Monty Pythonesque and psychedelically coloured, is of course quite irrelevant………except in one telling regard – ShonKey Python is a cynical, unmitigated fraud on everything he purports to portray.

          I reckon there’s some pathology there somewhere. Shit ! NZ pays the price.

      • tricledrown 4.1.2

        Burt your face is red goes with the neck.
        Looks like you have slipped up again it can’t be easy being sexist neanderthal

    • ghostwhowalksnz 4.2

      All Key has said about the timing of ‘hearing about Dotcom’ is that they have scoured his files and cant ‘find any evidence’ that he knew-

      A pretty big escape clause if you ask me. He could have been told- and most likely was given a briefing, but he will blame his officials -again.

      Funnily enough in parliament he remembers all sorts of silly details about opposition MPs careers and statements

      • burt 4.2.1

        Absolutely an escape clause. … You won’t find any evidence that I had….

        Crap eh. Hurry hurry, elect a leader who can’t even remember his own off shore bank accounts – he’s clearly an honest and principled man to lead this country.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 4.2.1.1

          Its not an ‘offshore’ bank account that has to be declared- its any bank account over a certain amount.
          Expect a few National Mps to suddenly have declared bank accounts in the next register of assets

          • burt 4.2.1.1.1

            Nit pick the details… I know like when Winston didn’t declare $100,000 donations to the Vella family and gave the racing industry a tax cut – he did nothing wrong but … But but Banks … He’s a criminal and must stand in court.

            • georgecom 4.2.1.1.1.1

              Burt. You are essentially saying “they are doing it too”.

              Shearer has done it so that justifies Key doing it. Maybe, maybe not. In some occasions the damn both houses is likely correct.

              However, major difference, Shearer didn’t deny knowing about the bank account. Key has denied knowing Dotcom and stated so strongly on a number of occasions.

              Should it come out that Key knew, he has dug himself a huge hole. You can of course try the ‘look at shearer’ line but it will be Keys integrity on the line.

              • burt

                No I’m not saying that. I’m just taking the piss out of the partisan hacks who denigrated all the opponents of the EFA (including the HRC) as being full of shit. Now of course they fully respect and agree with the same people they bagged… See these people know not what they are doing – they are supporters of a party – not thinking people who actually care about what is happening.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  burt, the EFA was changed in accordance with what the HRC said so it’s disingenuous to say that the HRC was “denigrated” in relation to it. All the others trashing the EFA were and are partisan hacks.

                  I’m going to stop responding to you now because I really can’t be bothered banging my head against the brick wall that is your head.

            • RedLogix 4.2.1.1.1.2

              And of course burt is being selective as usual with his details. The critical point he deliberately omits is that it was Shearer himself who made public the error.

              The simplest explanation for the mistake is that Shearer knew perfectly well that the account existed, but as an overseas account he incorrectly imagined it was not required to be declared. The kind of simple (and inconsequential) mistake busy people can easily make.

              Unfortunate and embarrassing yes, but ultimately of no more real significance that the idiotic brouhaha over Clark signing that damn painting.

        • ak 4.2.1.2

          Heh heh dear wee burt. Ah well, I guess another ten years of “they’re both equally bad as each other – but Labour is worse” is a narrow escape from a decade of GCSB retrospective validation

          • burt 4.2.1.2.1

            Imagine it – rOb defending the retrospective validation because it was expedient for the ruling party to stay in power. Oh hang on… the ruling party is blue – No no – it’s bad … this thing we defended is now something we need to fight against…

            Principles based on the colour of a party logo – the lowest form of intelligence.

      • Mary 4.2.2

        Yes, Key’s behaviour in the past suggests this too will play out in a similar way. There is a tiny bit of hope, though, that this time what Dotcom has is so strong it leaves Key with absolutely no wriggle room. That’s the hope.

    • Follow-the-money 4.3

      As a guy, it’s difficult to understand the ‘John Key, does it for me’ thing that women have, but surely wouldn’t you rather hear Kim Dotcom say “Ail be baack”?

      • Chooky 4.3.1

        Blame the ‘NZ Woman’s Weekly’ and other puerile NZ womens magazines for hyping up John Key as Mr Sexy pants with $50 million in his money bags and a mansion with a swimming pool and a gorgeous slim loving wife in designer clothes…These magazines on the supermarket stands used to make me want to puke !…such drivel.

        Personally I find Mr Dot Com in his baggy clothes and rather overweight , with his lightning fast brain, a way more sexy !…..Where are you NZ ‘Woman’s Weekly’?…How about an in depth article on cloud computing and democracy and privacy?..and Mr Dot Com beaming from the front page in his baggies.

        • Chris 4.3.1.1

          @ chooky…”!…..Where are you NZ ‘Woman’s Weekly’?…How about an in depth article on cloud computing and democracy and privacy?..and Mr Dot Com beaming from the front page in his baggies”.

          You are kidding aren’t you? NZ Womens Weekly to publish anything that requires a little thought… great TUI ad

          • Chooky 4.3.1.1.1

            Agreed!…but I reckon they did a lot for Key by hyping up his image to their silly readership

      • Mary 4.3.2

        What it “does” for me is remind me what an idiot Keys is. Attraction towards Keys of any kind was the last thing on my mind, let alone sexual attraction.

        • RedLogix 4.3.2.1

          Never ever underestimate John Key. He is the very greatest political salesman this country has ever seen.

          • Colonial Viper 4.3.2.1.1

            +1

          • Rosetinted 4.3.2.1.2

            Keys – our Silvio Berlusconi (Italy – been to Court about corruption, having sex with older teenage girl – in his 70’s I think. Owner of tv stations, able to get control of cross-media by a soft parliament.)

        • Chooky 4.3.2.2

          Answer to Mary: Agreed…”idiot Keys”….and “sexual attraction” puke!….but I dont think that this was what these magazines had in mind, quite the opposite for their silly readership….they were being promoted as the New Zealand equivalent of American tycoons and film stars , people to be watched and admired and emulated….and envied

    • rob 4.4

      Yes but we know how bad his memory is
      It’s incredible he was able to remember anything when he was
      making all that money!

  5. Ad 5

    - Stripping of local government functions
    – Takeover of Environment Canterbury
    – Crushing of Christchurch Council
    – Radical depletion of democracy in Auckland through restructure
    – Selling out DotCom to the CIA
    – Crushing unions as a democratic force

    Dame Ann is one elegant writer, turning his own words against him.

    Anyone else here prepared to write into the NZHerald with articles?

    • Wyndham 5.1

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10897497

      Dame Anne Salmond’s article in today’s Herald. Brilliant!

      • weka 5.1.1

        Where are the solutions?

        • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.1

          The bit about participation. Having people participate in their democracy ensures that they keep it and also helps restrain the anti-democratic authoritarianism that we’re seeing from this government. Unfortunately, people have become divorced from the political process and see no way to reconnect.

          How to reconnect them?
          Well, my suggestion there is a more grass roots democratic party where the policies of the party are decided by the members and not by the leaders. Also, get better participation in council wards and other local communities.

          • weka 5.1.1.1.1

            Interesting ideas Draco, but none of them are available as solutions to the general public.

            • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.1.1.1

              They’re actually the only ones that the general public have. Do you really think that leaders of the status quo going to change the status quo? Not going to happen and so we need to be the ones that change things and the only way to do that is to communicate with each other.

              • weka

                I think you have misunderstood me Draco. A grassroots democracratic party is a great idea. But it’s simply an idea at this stage unless someone takes some action. At the moment it’s too abstract. I don’t see it as a solution to what is happening this week or month, in terms of getting people re-engaged with democracy.

                • weka

                  Let me put it another way. I think people on ts are generally more interested in arguing about issues than coming up with solutions that we can use now (I’m including myself in this). I don’t want to minimise what people do elsewhere in their lives, but I think there is a wasted opportunity here on ts to shift from understanding what the problems are (we’re good at that), to doing something about them.

                  • karol

                    <a href='http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2013/07/13/ikaroa-rawhiti-by-election-autopsy-the-future-of-mana/'Mana?

                    They and groups like Auckland Poverty Action have been doing practical stuff on the ground.

                    This may help to politically engage the disengaged (if we are talking about the need to become more democratic).

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Doing something about them is long term, ongoing job. What we can do now is inform people of what is wrong and suggestion on what to do to fix those things. Further to that we can suggest joining a political party that resonates with them and joining a political party ourselves so that we and they are in a position to work long term.

          • AmaKiwi 5.1.1.1.2

            @ Draco “my suggestion is a more grass roots democratic party where the policies of the party are decided by the members and not by the leaders.”

            One of the five planks of Italy’s “Five Star Movement” was binding referendums.

            Three years after their founding Five Star won 25% of the seats in Parliament.

            That’s what WE can do.

      • UglyTruth 5.1.2

        When governments go feral, citizens of all political persuasions and from all backgrounds must stand up and demand that their representatives in Parliament – from whatever political party – do their job, and uphold democratic freedoms in New Zealand.

        Citizens are in no position to make demands of civil government. Repudiation of citizenship is the an essential part of curbing the power of a lawless body politic. The point that people like Dame Salmon do not address is the civil system itself is inherently a predatory system like mob rule.

        The law always provides a remedy. To understand the nature of the remedy one must first understand the nature of the law, in particular the differences between the civil law and the common law.

      • Paul 5.1.3

        “A quiet, obedient, and docile population; a culture of passivity and apathy; a meek acceptance of what politicians say and do – these things are not consistent with democracy.”

        Brilliant summary of the problem facing NZ democracy.
        An apathetic, distracted population, focused on rugby and reality TV.

    • unicus 5.2

      “Stopping Local Government Functions ”

      Exactly – lets hear the Herald call for the sacking of Mackay and Blakely for illegally refusing to release critical information to Auckland Councillors .

      Both of these individuals were appointed by the odious Rodney Hide – they were intended to act as Government stooges and that’s how they are behaving . Its the government who want to plant another million people in Auckland – not its citizens -and they will go through hell and high water to get their way .

      Not only has Cr Coney unmasked Mackay and Blakely – she’s also put the blow torch on the whole Government appointed senior executive team at AKC – not to mention the spineless pack of dimwits who make up the majority of her co-councillors

    • Sosoo 5.3

      Nothing will happen. It’s the same everywhere: increasing state authoritarianism meets with civic apathy. Even when things do kick off, the cops shut it down and it ends with a whimper.

      Fuck it. There’s no point in trying to make a meal out of this when hardly anyone is hungry.

      • Colonial Viper 5.3.1

        I understand your point of view. Why bother throwing John Key out of office when it appears that Labour would support 95% of the same legislation. This is another example of National and Labour in near-lockstep again and another reason that people have become so apathetic.

        • weka 5.3.1.1

          Why bother doing anything when we can sit on the internet and compain about it?

          • Colonial Viper 5.3.1.1.1

            Good point. Why indeed.

          • UglyTruth 5.3.1.1.2

            Why bother doing anything when we can sit on the internet and compain about it?

            Because complaining does not solve the problem, and without solving the problem the future consequences of a dysfunctional society only become more entrenched.

        • Because Labour might actually be swayed by the Greens more than once? :)

          • Colonial Viper 5.3.1.2.1

            Yes, the Greens are well on their way to becoming an “acceptable, responsible mainstream party”. Good on them.

      • David H 5.3.2

        “Fuck it. There’s no point in trying to make a meal out of this when hardly anyone is hungry.”

        Don’t you cook???

        It’s the smells from the Kitchen that makes the saliva flow and the taste buds come to life as you inhale the aroma’s. And all of a sudden your not hungry, you are Ravenous!

  6. Follow-the-money 6

    It will be strange to be in New Zealand, soon, where buying a bus ticket will be little different to going through the airport departure gate, bringing home a loaf of bread will be like registering a new birth, and sending an email to a friend will be like lodging a passport application. As far as the government’s ability to know about you.

    John Key’s family won’t be able to give him a surprise party, if he didn’t want one.

    And, there must be a lot of ACT supporters (proportionally, I mean – I read the polls, too) who wonder why their man, Banks, supports even a modified version of the bill & why Rodney Hide wrote in support of it.

    But what I want to know is where it suddenly came from. Why does the government think we need it? Is it only because they want another chance to legally spy on Kim Dotcom, or is there a deeper motive? We’re not exactly the most terrorist-risky country.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 6.1

      Dont be caught up in the spin about terrorists, after all Kim Dotcoms crime was to run a file sharing service, and yet he was under surveillance.

      The latest catch phrase is ‘ weapons of mass destruction’ which is defined as what ever you want it to be. After all a bag of flour- as a fine powder dispersed in the atmosphere can create a mighty big explosion in the right circumstances

      • Zorr 6.1.1

        Never forget. One of the biggest acts of terrorism on US soil was a van loaded with fertiliser and diesel.

        Big ‘splodey doesn’t require much think think.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 6.1.1.1

          The surveillance of reporters in the US had increased, with the FBI using some tricks to get secret access to journalists records.

          NY Times:
          “Justice Department’s investigative guidelines that would prevent the Federal Bureau of Investigation from portraying a reporter as a co-conspirator in a criminal leak as a way to get around a legal bar on secret search warrants for reporting materials”

      • AmaKiwi 6.1.2

        John Key is a weapon of mass destruction!

        • rob 6.1.2.1

          John Key is a flake with no memory
          He has plenty of stooges who shall follow him eh Steven

    • Sosoo 6.2

      Because they can get away within and hardly anyone cares…

    • Chooky 6.3

      Reply to: Follow the Money ”

      “But what I want to know is where it suddenly came from. Why does the government think we need it? Is it only because they want another chance to legally spy on Kim Dotcom, or is there a deeper motive? We’re not exactly the most terrorist-risky country.”

      I have wondered this too…..

      Conjecture: Maybe ‘they’ Mr Key and friends have plans for NZ we don’t know about yet ….

      ie..Follow-the -money…..who are John Keys friends/interests /tribes ?…What are their interests? ….What interest could they have in NZ?.. a friendly island refuge ?….and in …charter schools? …oil?… safe haven?…Kiwi Bank? ( Goldman Sachs)?…Many would have better ideas than me on possible plans for our NZ……..Maybe John Keys friends/interests will make us a far less safe , democratic , happy NZ .

      Conjecture: Dot Com is a particular threat because he runs a cloud service which is an encrypted internet storage service ( unlike the likes of Google and Microsoft ) which can keep safe private /business information and communications (from spying ‘ USA Prism / 5 eyes’…etc )

      I may be wrong but to me it seems that in some ways Dot Com holds the keys to a future internet which retains personal privacy…..

  7. gobsmacked 7

    It’s only the Human Rights Commission. And the Law Society. Do they matter?

    Let’s ask John Key …

    http://johnkey.co.nz/archives/275-NEWS-National-will-dump-draconian-law.html

    “In its select committee submission, the Human Rights Commission called the Electoral Finance Bill a ‘dramatic assault’ on fundamental human rights.

    “The Law Society said the bill was complex and vague, and made it dangerous for anyone to participate in elections for fear of unknowingly breaking the law.

    “But Labour doesn’t care about these submissions – or any of the others pointing out the obvious dangers to our democracy.

  8. infused 8

    So many people still sticking up for Dotcom it’s mindblowing.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 8.1

      Yes! First the verdict, then the trial.

      I note people are sticking up for their personal liberties, and that you seem to be an authoritarian nanny state loving wingnut.

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      You shouldn’t be envious of wealth, envy is such an ugly trait, you should be happy for Dotcoms success.

  9. idlegus 9

    what a great and exciting article from dame anne salmond, wow, & in the herald, double wow. i found this in the comments which i thought was very relevant,

    “It was Nelson Mandela who said: “Even when a democratic Government is installed, no minority should be disadvantaged.” He went on to say: “There is always a danger that when there is no opposition, the governing party can become too arrogant, too confident.” “

  10. Steve 10

    Would Key dare create a terror incident within the next few weeks to steamroller his gcsb laws in? how far would he and his US mates go?

  11. BrucetheMoose 11

    They say that trends come back into fashion over time. My friends use to mock me buying that useless WW2 Nazi memorabilia that I have stashed in a box in the attic. Who’s laughing now.

  12. Blue 12

    “We won’t see the country’s principle paper ignore…”

    That should be principal paper. They don’t have any principles.

    The Herald’s only problem with the EFA was that it threatened their advertising revenue. See also their virulent attacks on teachers for their opposition to National Standards, because the Herald wants to publish league tables.

    Unless the Herald can think up a reason why the GCSB law is bad for them, there will be no opposition from them.

  13. Sable 13

    Don’t expect much from the blatantly right wing media. Sites like the right wing rag Stuff and no doubt the Herald will probably find some way of excusing the worst of Keys excesses. I know Stuff have done a great job of painting Keys as a “fun loving” dictator.

  14. SukieDamson 14

    Proof positive on the ever dropping journalistic standards

    http://youtu.be/rFwNfbsPny0

  15. Draco T Bastard 15

    Dame Anne Salmond: A warning to New Zealanders keep hold of democracy

    I agree with these sentiments, absolutely. New Zealanders must stand up for their democratic rights when they are threatened, or they’ll lose them.

    Who could have imagined that in 2013, this same political leader would be presiding over an assault upon the democratic rights of New Zealanders? This is a matter of such gravity that last month, the Law Society felt impelled to report to the United Nations that in New Zealand “a number of recent legislative measures are fundamentally in conflict with the rule of law”.
    ———————————-
    A quiet, obedient, and docile population; a culture of passivity and apathy; a meek acceptance of what politicians say and do – these things are not consistent with democracy.

    A healthy democracy requires the active participation of citizens in public life and in public debates. Without this participation, democracy begins to wither and becomes the preserve of a small, select political elite.”

    So even the Law Society is now convinced that this government is acting against democracy and I agree with that last part. We need to be participants in our democracy for our democracy to survive. If we aren’t then the corporates will take over – exactly as we’re seeing under this government.

    • weka 15.1

      “We need to be participants in our democracy for our democracy to survive.”

      How? Concrete, accessible solutions would be good.

      • AmaKiwi 15.1.1

        @ weka

        See comment 5.1.1.1.2 above.

        It’s not hard in NZ.

        • weka 15.1.1.1

          “It’s not hard in NZ.”

          So why is it not happening?

          • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.1.1

            You need backers with money and activists with time and energy.

            EDIT and you need a capable leadership team so the thing doesn’t turn into a vehicle for some monomaniac.

      • McFlock 15.1.2

        Talk about issues.
        Get interested in things beyond what we would normally encounter.
        Join a party or organisation.
        Circulate news stories and links.
        If something gets up your nose, picket.

        Because we can’t force other people to be interested or think like us, and no organisation, budget or leader will magically change things. We are in a three-way tug of war between two political paradigms and apathy, and it’s been going for centuries. All we, as individuals, can do is try to encourage people in our areas to pull hard in our direction.

      • Paul 15.1.3

        Forward Dame Anne Salmond’s article to all your contacts.
        That’s a start.
        Discuss issues with everyone.
        Don’t be quiet.

        • weka 15.1.3.1

          That’s good too, thanks.

        • Molly 15.1.3.2

          Start discussion groups for young people, similar to Generation Zero and Justspeak where political discussions take place.

          The usual adversarial techniques of debating are shunned, and true listening and discussion skills are taught. So, political views from all places on the spectrum feel invigorated by the process and all are encouraged to participate.

          Who knows – if it works for the younger amongst us – perhaps it could grow to include us all.

          • weka 15.1.3.2.1

            The justseak site seems to be down.

            Molly, what you say is interesting. Can you link to actual discussions?

  16. mouse 16

    Why is that that I can not “like” a comment to this article…> http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10897557#commentsList

    is anyone else here able to like a comment on this article… or has something been shut down ?

    • karol 16.1

      Yep. Clicked on “like” between “reply” & “report”

      • mouse 16.1.1

        Karol, Did the site register yr like ?

        • karol 16.1.1.1

          Hmm. Immediately it did. But it’s gone when I refresh.

          • mouse 16.1.1.1.1

            Thanks Karol… it’s not just me then… some other issue in play.

            Is anyone else prohibited from liking a comment to this article ?

      • David H 16.1.2

        And clicking on Like, opened a blank page for me, and it’s got 165 likes.

        Edit: just tried commenting that seems to work.

  17. Tautoko Viper 17

    I can’t get my vote recorded also. Very frustrating

  18. Looking forward to seeing THIS ‘attack on democracy’ printed in the Herald!

    PROTEST!: Sunday 14 July 2013, from 12 noon – 1pm, outside the home of Judge Helen Winkelmann, 20 Audrey Street, Takapuna, where Vince Siemer will ‘surrender’ himself for
    6 weeks imprisonment at Mt Eden.

    https://maps.google.co.nz/maps?q=Map+20+Audrey+St+Takapuna&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x6d0d375fc7190a51:0x1be04919b4257c68,20+Audrey+Rd,+Takapuna,+Auckland+0620&gl=nz&ei=xyrhUaeANoboiAedx4CQCA&ved=0CCsQ8gEwAA

    This is a DISGRACE – when NZ Judges do not follow the RULE OF LAW – but just ‘make it up’?

    Vince Siemer is believed to be the first person in the free world to be sentenced to prison for reporting a criminal court judgment.

    In New Zealand – ‘perceived’ to be ‘the least corrupt country in the world’?

    What a sick joke.

    This ongoing persecution of Vince Siemer, in my opinion, NZ’s foremost ‘whistleblower’ against judicial corruption, makes me ashamed to be a New Zealander.

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption / anti-privatisation’ campaigner

    2013 Auckland Mayoral candidate
    ______________________________________________________________________________

    Don’t jail Siemer, says dissenting Chief Justice

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/dont-jail-siemer-says-chief-justice-gb-p-142808

    (Includes links to Supreme Court Judgment)

    ______________________________________________________________________________

    STATEMENT BY VINCE SIEMER:
    ______________________________________________________________________________

    SILENCE OF THE LAMBS

    13 July 2013

    First they came for the trade unionists…

    I, Vince Siemer, am going to prison tomorrow after the Supreme Court upheld the Court of Appeal ruling which in turn upheld two judges of the High Court decreeing I am in contempt of the Courts. I consider I can show no better respect for the rule of law than contempt for judges who pervert it. My “crime” is publishing the secret December 2010 judgment of Justice Helen Winkelmann which denied the Urewera 18 defendants their statutory right to trial by jury on the basis a jury “would likely use improper reasoning processes”. The Chief Justice strongly dissented, recognising I disobeyed an unlawful order yet was denied the lawful right to challenge it in order to preserve my liberty.

    I am believed to be the first person in the free world to be sentenced to prison for reporting a criminal court judgment. (Who says New Zealand does not lead the world?!) One reason I am the first is secret criminal court judgments are unlawful. In my case, the Courts roundly protected the unlawfulness of Winkelmann?s order by asserting they need not determine the lawfulness on the ground even unlawful orders need to be obeyed until overturned – the Crown claiming a message needed to be sent to the larger community of this. Interestingly, I invited the Attorney General to make submissions in the public interest regarding the lawfulness of Winkelmann’s orders and he responded that, if he made submissions at all, he would seek an increased order of costs against me.

    Where Winkelmann’s order gave no reasons for the secrecy, the High Court Judges tripped over each other to retrofit the reason that justice required the secrecy. The Crown conceded at my trial no prejudice or harm was alleged as a result of my publication, but they still wanted me imprisoned. In a page out of a George Orwell novel, the Court of Appeal censored Winkelmann’s reason for negating the statutory right of appeal when upholding my conviction out of fear the public would not take kindly to being called stupid in a secret judgment.

    First they steal the words; stealing the meanings only when required.

    New Zealand judges are out of control. We no longer have the instilling discipline of the Privy Council in England. The NZ Court of Appeal judges trounced by the Privy Council as law-breakers in Taito v R now comprise the Supreme Court which replaced the Privy Council.

    Do you see any mainstream media reporting any of this?

    We get what we deserve with our judges. The incestuous nature of judicial appointments being what it is, every judge in New Zealand signed on to submissions to Parliament opposing the passage of the pecuniary interest of judges bill currently before Parliament. Really? Not one judge in the whole of New Zealand not actively opposed to this bill which requires them to register their financial and business interests? While it seems impossible at times to get more than two Members of Parliament to completely agree, our 205 judges are in lock step with their independent view. It is evident “independent judge” is an oxymoron in New Zealand.

    We have forfeited much with the loss of the independent Privy Council. This should come as no surprise. Former Attorney General Margaret Wilson was undeterred when 82 percent of Auckland law practitioners voted against her new Supreme Court. When everyone’s back was turned it still happened. We built a $100 million palace for five elevated judges, most of whom were known to engage in breaches of due process. And, like sheep, this 82% fell into the fold even as this new court made mince out of established principles on judicial bias and essential legal rights, rolling over established legislation with all the finesse of a blitzkrieg. It is the law today that the “New Zealand independent and informed observer” is an endangered species and, where it does exist, does not consider a judge has a conflict of interest where he/she is business adversary or sibling to those who appear before him/her. You now have to be rich to get to a hearing in the courts – the Supreme Court ruling the requirement that plaintiffs pay the defendants’ anticipated legal costs into the Court as a condition to obtaining a hearing is “well-settled law” in New Zealand. Two years ago, in Atty General v Chapman, the Supreme Court ruled judges are exempt from the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 on the ground this statute that expressly bound them threatens their “independence” we all know so well.

    Maybe the diminishing numbers allowed to be heard in the courtrooms no longer care. But we could possibly survive without the legal necessity of independent judges if these judges had any respect for the rule of law and the courts they serve. But they have no respect for laws where their mates and critics are concerned, and the most powerful sheep lawyers in New Zealand, while silent about it publicly, make no secret about it privately. As retired Judge Sir Edward Thomas said in a 2007 email to the president of the New Zealand Bar, “I am not a keeper of the court’s conscience and am of the view that my primary obligation is to Alan, not just as a matter of professional obligation but by virtue of my deep friendship for him. There is a limit to how far I will go to uphold the integrity of the court if the judges themselves won’t.”

    Where is the “independent bar” on this? Flocking behind the independent judges, either cowering in fear or cloaked in protective partisanship. This silent flock is hoping the perverse court judgments in my cases do not generally denigrate the rule of law in New Zealand. History finds this the safest place for lawyers to be. Look at Fiji.

    Those who see little comparison with Fiji fail to realise that Fijians do not feel oppressed. That is the insidious thing with erosion of the rule of law. It is frighteningly uneventful until the tipping point. In the Earthquake Commission contempt the Solicitor General filed against Marc Krieger this week, it was not the Bill of Rights or due process legislation which even featured in the SG’s application. The SG largely relies upon three of my court decisions to eventually bankrupt this poor citizen who had the audacity to expose the EQC’s attempt to write off $100 million which evaporated from the public coffers.

    Anyone who doesn’t believe a “deep friendship for Alan” is a more valuable commodity in a New Zealand Court than truth and law chooses to ignore the reality. For whistleblowers, one obvious problem is they do not have deep friendships with the perpetrators whose power and influence is the currency of the New Zealand courts. Partisanship and secrecy is endemic, and it is laying ruin to the rule of law in black robe and white collar New Zealand. It would be better if it was blood in the streets, if only to wake people up to the huge corruption occuring behind closed court doors. No one should need to go to prison to protect the rule of law but the sad reality is sitting in prison is often the best way to stand up for legal rights. While it is unfortunate this price must be paid, I consider my imprisonment a demonstration of my highest respect for the law.

    ______________________________________________________________________________

    Vince Siemer
    Editor
    Spartan News Limited
    on-line NZ news: http://www.kiwisfirst.co.nz
    ______________________________________________________________________________

  19. KJT 19

    Democracy = “rule by the people”.

    WE DO NOT AND HAVE NEVER HAD, A DEMOCRACY.

    The Swiss have a democracy.

    At best we have a rotating dictatorship where they generously allow us to change the names of the dictators every three years. Who then go on to do whatever they like!

    Even basic democratic rights like BCIR, (with low enough thresholds so they actually happen), workers rights to withdraw their labour, freedom of speech and access to the courts, are denied.

    Where if we do not like the current lot the only option is to vote in the lot we did not like last time. (Nod to “No Right Turn”).

    Where Governments go into ideological fantasy worlds of their own with no real checks or balance.

    An upper house just perpetuates the removal of political power from the people.

    http://kjt-kt.blogspot.co.nz/2011/10/democracy-repris.html
    “You mean the largely self appointed old boys club of the marginally competent. Who examine all the papers and evidence and then do the opposite because of an irrational faith in free markets and other religions.
    The ones who totally ignore expert research, empirical evidence, overseas experiences and advice and follow the failed footsteps of the UK, Ireland, Greece and USA.”

    http://kjt-kt.blogspot.co.nz/2011/06/democracy-recap.html
    “Like most people your objections are really. “We cannot have democracy because the decisions may not reflect the ones I would make”.
    Well. I am happy to test my ideas against the collective intelligence of the public. Are you?”

    If you object to allowing the majority to vote on policy, why then, allow them to vote on representation. The same objections apply.
    It seems way too many politicians, including, sadly, many on the left, are happy to have a dictatorship so long as they get a turn.

    • Draco T Bastard 19.1

      +1

    • UglyTruth 19.2

      Democracy = lawful rule by the people.
      “rule by the people” = mob rule.

      • KJT 19.2.1

        So UT, you do not believe that people should have a say in their own future?

        Scratch as self styled libertarian and you almost always find a nasty little authoritarian fascist.
        Like Brash, Banks, Hide, Collins and Brownlee. (I think Key is just a “useful idiot”!).

        And that we should be ruled by 10 or 20 group thinking, self selected, marginally competent, people who have the arrogance to think they have the right to speak for all the rest of us.

        And you are disregarding all the evidence from business studies and elsewhere, including countries with more democratic Governments, that the more people involved in decision making the better the overall quality of the decisions.

        “Mob rule” in fact, has been proven to make for better run States, than those run by “representatives”.

        And. Ethically, “even if our decisions are wrong, it should be ours to make”.

        • UglyTruth 19.2.1.1

          Yes, of course people should have a say in their own future. I’m not arguing for representative democracy, I think that direct (participatory) democracy is better.

          “even if our decisions are wrong, it should be ours to make”.

          Not when your decisions affect the rights of others.

          • Draco T Bastard 19.2.1.1.1

            Not when your decisions affect the rights of others.

            Everything you do affects others and their rights – should you therefore do nothing?

          • KJT 19.2.1.1.2

            All political decisions affect the rights of others in some way.

            Like the decision not to sell assets, which at least 70% of New Zealanders agree with.

            The majority decision of New Zealander’s in the referendum will most likely be against asset sales, affecting the rights of a few shareholders to make money from the rest of us.

            So. By your reckoning that is a decision we are not allowed to make because it stops a few peoples rights to steal from the rest of us?

            70% of those who voted in a referendum to keep Hamilton water fluoridated affected the rights of those who are against it. But should we let a lunatic minority dictate to the majority.

            You say you are for “participatory democracy” but against rule by majority vote. How else do we do it?

            We choose representatives by majority vote. Should we change to not voting at all?

            Having the politicians pick our representatives, like present day Labour, works SO well!

            The high quality of Green politicians is because they are voted in the list by a majority, almost consensus, of all party members.

            • UglyTruth 19.2.1.1.2.1

              By your reckoning that is a decision we are not allowed to make because it stops a few peoples rights to steal from the rest of us?

              Nobody has the right to steal anything. If a decision is made with the informed consent of all the affected parties then there shouldn’t be a problem.

              You say you are for “participatory democracy” but against rule by majority vote. How else do we do it?

              I suggest that you do it lawfully – that’s what sets democracy apart from mob rule. In practical terms this could mean applying the system of the common law hundred. The main difference between the hundred and representational democracy is that the hundred is apolitical – its purpose is only to resolve disputes. Also, the operation of the hundred is based on truth and reason rather than on the opinion of the majority. But if the hundred does it’s job of resolving the dispute then this point is moot.

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    On the Left | 21-10
  • Video Against Poverty
    Schoolgirls in Kalimpong, West Bengal, India.  Photo / Julie Zhu This is week two of my givealittle.co.nz campaign Video Against Poverty and I'm more than 2/3 of the way to my goal of $2600.00.  This has been totally unexpected and is a really...
    Notes from the edge | 21-10
  • Why I’m Left
    I’m Left all the way down to my bones. My bone marrow is made up of lots of microscopic Karl Marx mustaches. It’s partly why I’m so curmudgeonly. When I was born I was brought home from the hospital to...
    Tangerina | 21-10
  • Gordon Campbell on Pharmac, Gough Whitlam and Sleater-Kinney
    Column – Gordon Campbell Ridiculous reported comments on RNZ this morning by Trade Minister Tim Groser, as he sought to dampen down concerns about yesterdays leaked draft of the IP chapter of ther Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations.Gordon Campbell on Pharmac,...
    Its our future | 21-10
  • Don’t cough on me
    It used to be acceptable to go to work or travel with a cough or the flu. That’s been changing over the last 10-20 years, and people who cough and sniffle in public are increasingly treated like people who smoke in the...
    Lance Wiggs | 21-10
  • Some might just come by train.
        As a Waikato girl by birth, Aucklander by nature, and living in Hamilton by choice, I’ve long being a supporter a regular train gig chugging the willing and the weary between the hustle and pace of Auckland and...
    Politically Corrected | 21-10
  • Why I’m Left: happiness, solidarity and community
    (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think about why they’re On The Left, and what the next three years holds for the left, the government, and New Zealand.) I’m Left all the way down to my...
    On the Left | 21-10
  • Curiosity’s historic comet photo
    Photo Credit: Curiosity on Mars – NASA Rover Opportunity Views Comet Near Mars. According to NASA: NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity captured images of a comet passing much closer to Mars than any previous known comet flyby of Earth or Mars....
    Open Parachute | 21-10
  • Ireland in the 21st century – Christchurch WEA course, Sat, Nov 1, 1-4.30...
    One of Ireland’s many ‘ghost estates’, built during the ‘Celtic Tiger’ fake-boom; these buildings are a haunting symbol of early 21st century Ireland Saturday 1 November, 1 – 4.30 pm The twenty-first century began with, officially at least, a great...
    Redline | 21-10
  • Ireland in the 21st century – Christchurch WEA course, Sat, Nov 1, 1-4.30...
    One of Ireland’s many ‘ghost estates’, built during the ‘Celtic Tiger’ fake-boom; these buildings are a haunting symbol of early 21st century Ireland Saturday 1 November, 1 – 4.30 pm The twenty-first century began with, officially at least, a great...
    Redline | 21-10
  • Gough Whitlam: 1916 – 2014
    A Mighty Totara has Fallen: Australian Prime Minister Gough Whitlam paying his respects to the late NZ PM, Rt. Hon. Norman Kirk, during his Lying-in-State at Parliament Buildings, Wellington. Wednesday, 4th September, 1974. (Photo by John Miller.) A BIG MAN IN EVERY...
    Bowalley Road | 21-10
  • DAY OF ACTION 8 NOVEMBER 2014
    Auckland, Hamilton, Raglan, Tauranga, Rotorua, Gisborne, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Levin,Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin, Invercargill. Need a reason to march on 8 November? Check out Professor Jane Kelsey’s latest blog. Updates on what is on where: Auckland – speakers include...
    NZ – Not for sale | 21-10
  • The Security Council and free trade
    Last week, New Zealand won a seat on the United Nations Security Council. And over the weekend the New Zealand business community made it clear what they wanted from the position:A business director says New Zealand's new seat on the...
    No Right Turn | 21-10
  • World News Brief, Tuesday October 21
    Top of the AgendaU.S. Army Drops Weapons to Kurdish Forces...
    Pundit | 20-10
  • National’s failure on housing
    A year ago National passed the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act 2013. In his speech introducing the bill, then-Housing Minister Nick Smith laid down some clear targets: It is an ambitious agreement, and sets out a plan to...
    No Right Turn | 20-10
  • Life isn’t fair. But it should be.
    (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think about why they’re On The Left, and what the next three years holds for the left, the government, and New Zealand.) I was not an angelic child. My mother...
    On the Left | 20-10
  • ECAN, Fed Farmers and Dairy NZ – Plotting to reduce water quality
    What does National’s resounding election win mean for our rivers? As we found in our review of the Government’s water quality framework, we have serious reasons to doubt their commitment to ‘maintain or improve our waterways’. Our concerns are growing...
    Gareth’s World | 20-10
  • A new left-leaning blog
    I am pleased to announce the launch of a new blogsite catering for those who want something more than the fare currently being offered by left-leaning sites like The Daily Blog and The Standard....
    Imperator Fish | 20-10
  • Ebola and the criminal passivity of the Great Powers
    The presidents of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, three Ebola-stricken West African nations, made urgent pleas for money, doctors and hospital beds.  The UN Ebola envoy said 20 times more was needed to counter the epidemic.  The U.S. director of...
    Redline | 20-10
  • New Zealand, ISIL, and suspicious behaviour
    The government has announced a review of how New Zealand might deal with foreign fighters in the future in response to what is happening currently in Iraq and Syria. There are some interesting titbits in the press release in terms...
    On the Left | 20-10
  • Out of Zionism: interview with Israeli anti-Zionist historian Ilan Pappé
    One of our links is to the excellent Le Mur des Oreilles site, which contains interviews with Palestinian figures, Israeli anti-Zionists and a range of cultural and political figures talking about the Palestinian cause and the importance of actions such...
    Redline | 20-10
  • Out of Zionism: interview with Israeli anti-Zionist historian Ilan Pappé
    One of our links is to the excellent Le Mur des Oreilles site, which contains interviews with Palestinian figures, Israeli anti-Zionists and a range of cultural and political figures talking about the Palestinian cause and the importance of actions such...
    Redline | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    frogblog | 20-10
  • Gordon Campbell on the latest TPP leaks
    The release by Julian Assange on Wikileaks of the draft Trands Pacific Partnership chapter on intellectual property – including drug patents – contains some pretty disturbing evidence about what’s still on the table. The leaked drafts pertain to the May...
    Gordon Campbell | 20-10
  • Access: Art and disability: a festival
    The three-day InterACT 2014 Disability Arts Festival kicks off tomorrow at Auckland's Corban Estate and, in its fourth year, provides an intriguing mix of established artists and joyous, unbridled inclusion.One one hand, there are the gala nights on Thursday and...
    Public Address | 20-10
  • EPA finds Shell Oil illegally drilled two wells
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded that Shell Todd Oil Services (STOS) broke the law by drilling two wells without a marine consent off the coast of Taranaki, the Green Party said today. The EPA conducted an inspection of...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    News that Aucklanders overtook Wellingtonians as the biggest train users is further evidence the Government needs to start work on the Auckland City Rail Link now, the Green Party said today.Auckland Transport said today that in the year to September,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Tea breaks gone by lunch time
    Labour is calling for an eleventh hour reprieve to employment law changes which could see thousands of Kiwi workers not covered by collective agreements lose their smoko breaks, its spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“How cynical that on the...
    Labour | 21-10
  • Metiria Turei to lead fight on feeding hungry children
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira.Mrs Turei, who leads the Green Party's work on child poverty, will pick up Mr...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Otago dairy farms fail basics
    I’m really privileged to take on the responsibility of the water portfolio. Eugenie Sage has done excellent work in this area in the last term of parliament and provided a great platform for further work. Last Parliament my bill to...
    Greens | 21-10
  • A mighty totara has fallen across the Tasman
    The New Zealand Labour Party expresses deep sadness at the death of former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, aged 98. “Today a great totara has fallen across the Tasman,” Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says....
    Labour | 21-10
  • Note to National: Must deliver on child poverty
    John Key and his Government will be held to its promise to make child poverty a priority, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “In its priority-setting speech today the Government stated child poverty would be a major focus for...
    Labour | 21-10
  • New Analysis show Government cut tertiary education funding
    New analysis done by the Green Party today shows the Government has made cuts to funding of tertiary education since 2008.Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that between 2009 and 2015 Government funding to Tertiary Institutions dropped by 4...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Students doing it tough as fees rise again
    The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Steven Joyce is shutting a generation...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Key misled New Zealand on Iraq deployment
      John Key was misleading New Zealanders prior to the election when he ruled out New Zealand special forces being deployed to Iraq, says Labour Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff.  “Post-election he has cynically disregarded that by saying that deployment of...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Church congratulated on child poverty stand
    The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.   “I think...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review.  He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban (see further biographical details here). The Review Team...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
  • RECOUNT JUST ONE STEP TO RESTORING CREDIBILITY
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA SEEKS TAI TOKERAU RECOUNT
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA to fight mass privatisation of state housing
    Announcements over the past 12 hours from the Minister responsible for Housing New Zealand, Bill English, and Minister for Social Housing, Paula Bennett, make clear the government’s intention for the mass privatisation of state housing. This comes during the middle...
    Mana | 07-10
  • Journalists have right to protect sources
    Legal authorities must respect the right of journalist Nicky Hager to protect the source of his material for his Dirty Politics book under Section 68 of the Evidence Act, Acting Labour Leader David Parker says. “It is crucial in an...
    Labour | 06-10
  • It shouldn’t take the Army to house the homeless
    National’s move to speed up its state house sell-off shows it is bankrupt of new ideas, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “National has been in office for six years, yet the housing crisis has got worse every month and...
    Labour | 06-10
  • Government must lift social housing supply, not shuffle the deck chairs
    National's decision to shift the state provision of housing to third parties is a smokescreen for the Government decreasing the provision of affordable housing, the Green Party said today."What National should be doing is increasing the supply of both social...
    Greens | 06-10
  • Election 2014 – the final count
    While we have to wait for the final booth level counts we can now see how well we did in the specials and look at electorate level data. First off special votes (and disallowed/recounted votes etc). There was a change...
    Greens | 06-10
  • We need more houses, not Ministers
    The Government’s decision to have three housing Ministers will create a dog’s breakfast of the portfolio and doesn’t bode well for fixing the country’s housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New Zealanders need more houses, not more Ministers....
    Labour | 05-10
  • MANA’S CHALLENGE TO THE 51st PARLIAMENT
    Ten years ago I led 50,000 Maori on the historic FORESHORE AND SEABED MARCH from Te Rerenga Wairua to the very steps of this parliament, in a march against the greatest land grab in the history of this country –...
    Mana | 03-10
  • Is this really necessary?
    No one denies chief executives should be well paid for their skills and experience, but it is the efforts of all employees which contribute to company profits, Labour’s Acting Leader David Parker says. “Salaries paid to chief executives come at...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Lyttelton Port workers also deserve pay rises
    Hard slog by Lyttelton Port workers contributed to strong financial growth for the company and they deserve to be rewarded for their work as much as its chief executive, says Labour’s Acting Leader David Parker. “Lyttelton Port chief executive Peter...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Māori Party must seek guarantees on Māori seats
    Labour is calling on the Māori Party to ensure protection of the Māori seats is part of its coalition deal with National which is being considering this weekend, Labour’s Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. “For the third consecutive term,...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Donaghys job losses another blow to Dunedin
    The loss of 30 jobs from Donaghys rope and twine factory is yet another blow to the people and economy of Dunedin, says Dunedin South Labour MP Clare Curran. “Donaghys was founded in 1876; the company has survived two world...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Dairy price fall shows urgent need to diversify
    The overnight drop in milk prices shows New Zealand’s overreliance on the dairy industry puts our economy in a vulnerable position, says Acting Labour Leader David Parker. “Dairy prices fell 7.3 per cent overnight and have almost halved since February....
    Labour | 02-10
  • Tasks aplenty for new Health Minister
    One of the first jobs for the new Minister of Health must be to provide an honest and transparent report into surgery waiting times and exactly how many Kiwis are not having their health needs met, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette...
    Labour | 02-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Discordant Chimes of Freedom: Why Labour has yet to be forgiven.
    WHY DOES THE ELECTORATE routinely punish Labour and the Greens for their alleged “political correctness” but not National? It just doesn’t seem fair. Consider, for example, the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 – the so-called “anti-smacking legislation” –...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Hosking or Henry – Which right wing crypto fascist clown do you want to w...
    So Mediaworks are finally going to make some actual money from their eye watering contract with Paul Henry by launching a new multi-platform Breakfast show over TV, Radio and internet. This is great news for Campbell Live who have dodged...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Families need more money to reduce child poverty
    Prime Minister John Key is mistaken to rule out extending the In Work Tax Credit to all poor children (The Nation 11th Oct) and Child Poverty Action Group challenges government advisors to come up with a more cost effective way...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Don’t shit on my dream
    Once were dreamers. A large man, walks down the road and, even from 200 yards there’s light showing between his big arms and bigger body. It’s as if he’s put tennis balls under his arms. Two parking wardens walk out...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Labour and ‘special interests’
    The media narrative of Labour is that it is unpopular because it’s controlled by ‘special interests’. This ‘special interests’ garbage is code for gays, Maoris, wimin and unionists. We should show that argument the contempt it deserves. The next Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Ru...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Tahi) . National’s housing development project: ‘Gateway’ to confusion . Perhaps nothing better illustrates National’s lack of a coherent housing programme than the ‘circus’ that is...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Here’s what WINZ are patronisingly saying to people on welfare when they ...
    Yesterday, a case manager from WINZ called to tell me that I needed to “imagine what I would do if I did not have welfare”. I replied “Well, I guess if I couldn’t live at home, I would be homeless.”...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • David Shearer’s ‘no feminist chicks’ mentality highlights all that is...
    Mr Nasty pays a visit Shearer’s extraordinary outburst last night on NZs favourite redneck TV, The Paul Henry Show, is a reminder of all that is wrong within the Labour Caucus right now… He said the current calls for a female or...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0
    Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – A Tale Of Two Cities
    Sunday was surreal. I went for a drive and ended up in a different country. It wasn’t intentional but those days of too many literally intertextual references seldom are. There is no doubt that the Sunday drive this week had...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Key raises terror threat level to justify war in Iraq and now the SIS need ...
    Have we learned nothing from rushing into war? It’s embarrassing Key has raised our terror threat from ‘very low’ to ‘low’ so he can justify military action in Iraq. Watching him pimp for an American war is as sick as...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Socialism? in France; Austerity in Europe
    On Sunday I stumbled upon this recent New York Times column The Fall of France by Paul Krugman. Then I caught BBC’s Newsnight interview with France’s ‘Socialist’ Prime Minister Manuel Valls. Krugman notes that the Socialists came to power on an anti-austerity mandate, but completely squandered their opportunity...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • So Snowden and Greenwald were right – again – NZ Embassies spying for A...
    Well, well, well. What do we have here… NZ embassies involved in covert intelligence work for US – reportsNew Zealand’s embassies have been involved in covert intelligence gathering work on behalf of the United States, a fresh batch of classified...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Why David Parker *isn’t* a credible choic...
    The one electoral contest this year that a Labour leader is sure to win heated up over the weekend with the late entry of Finance Spokesman (and interim caretaker leader) David Parker into Labour’s leadership race. I’d blogged late last...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • DIA undercover investigation leads to jailing
    An undercover Internal Affairs investigation has led to a Hastings man being jailed for three and half years....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • RainbowYOUTH: 25 Years, 25 More
    In 1989, a group of young people in Auckland got together to form a support group for LGBTIQ youth. They called it Auckland Lesbian And Gay Youth (ALGY). After 25 years, several location changes, a name change, a brand reboot...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Outdated Oath shows need for Kiwi Head of State
    MPs are sworn in today and New Zealand Republic has written to MPs asking them to talk about why 121 New Zealanders elected by the people of New Zealand and standing in the New Zealand Parliament swear allegiance to another...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Council shouldn’t revenue grab from windfall valuations
    Auckland Council should state clearly they will not try and capture revenue as a result of the latest valuations and needs reminding that the City’s skyrocketing property values doesn’t change the level or cost of Council’s services, says...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • EPMU endorses Andrew Little for Labour leadership
    The National Executive of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union unanimously endorsed Andrew Little for the role of Labour leader, at a meeting held yesterday. “I have been speaking to our workplace delegates at forums across the country over...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • World Food Day promotes Agroecology not GE technology
    The UN has stated that agroecology is a major solution to feeding the world and caring for the earth....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Labour Names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Contenders for Labour leadership debate for first time
    The contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party debated for the first time on TV One’s Q+A programme today....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • UN Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme
    New Zealand's United Nations Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully
    Murray McCully says New Zealanders can expect a 5-10 year engagement against Islamic State if we join military action in Iraq and the government will take that “very carefully into account”...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Julia Gillard
    Julia Gillard says there is “sufficient evidence” to fight Islamic State and does not think it will increase the risk of a domestic attack...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • NZ businesses to make child abuse a priority conversation
    Many leading New Zealand businesses have partnered with national child advocacy organisation Child Matters to participate in the fourth annual ‘Buddy Day’ - New Zealand’s only child abuse prevention awareness day....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Tribunal decision significant for SMEs
    The Human Rights Review Tribunal decided this week in favour of an employee’s right not to work on Saturdays for religious reasons. The decision may still be appealed but the Director of the Office of Human Rights Proceedings, Robert Kee,...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • On The Nation this weekend
    This weekend on The Nation… New Zealand has been elected to the United Nations Security Council, but what happens next? Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully from New York about our goals for reform, what America wants from us...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • 1000+ supported by Te Arawa Whanau Ora
    Over 1000 individual whānau members are leading happier, healthier, more successful lives as a result of eight passionate and committed Māori organisations working at the coalface to help whānau find success....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Nomination for Board Members Now Open
    CRF’s objective is to create opportunities for people from refugee backgrounds to lead fulfilling lives and contribute to every area of New Zealand society. It is an organisation that undertakes advocacy work using the strengths-based approach,...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Anglican Family Care Otago staff to take industrial action
    Social workers, family workers and support staff working for Anglican Family Care in Dunedin and South Otago will take industrial action after their employer refused a pay increase that would keep up with the rising cost of living....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Use UN Security Council role to overcome inaction and injust
    Amnesty International welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the UN Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use the role to ensure the body lives up to its role of safeguarding global peace and security....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Grisham’s ‘child porn’ comments ignorant
    World-renowned author John Grisham has come under fire by advocacy group Stop Demand Foundation, for comments it says trivialises the global child sex abuse trade....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Latest leak of TPPA intellectual property text confirms risk
    On the eve of the latest (non)round of negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) yet another version of the intellectual property has found its way to Wikileaks ....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • New Zealand awarded UN Security Council seat
    International aid agency Oxfam New Zealand welcomes New Zealand’s election to the United Nations Security Council, saying it gives an extraordinary opportunity to make a lasting contribution to international peace and security and improve the lives...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • 40 more jobs lost to cheap imports
    40 more jobs lost to cheap imports Another New Zealand manufacturer is closing its doors, giving the lie to the idea that we have a “rock star” economy or any strategy for jobs growth. Wellpack is a paper bag manufacturer...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Pink Batts manufacturer to cut Christchurch jobs
    Pink Batts manufacturer to cut Christchurch jobs 29 roles are to be cut at the Christchurch manufacturing facility of Tasman Insulation, the company which manufacturers the iconic Pink Batts brand of products. The company is proposing to consolidate its...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
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