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Irony? Nah.

Written By: - Date published: 1:33 pm, May 17th, 2013 - 56 comments
Categories: colonialism, humour, im/migration, Media, uk politics - Tags: , ,

When a culturally driven desire for a degree of autonomy clashes with culturally driven intolerence, some interesting dynamics can be unleashed. And when the dominant culture seeks to report on it… well, it can all get a bit confusing for them.

The United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) reportedly made big gains in the recent local elections held in England and Wales. And they thought they’d ride that wave of popularity north and into Scotland. Given the history of English based rascists attempting recruitment in Scotland, you’d have thought, as Mr Farage obviously didn’t, that a recruitment drive might not be the best of ideas. Anyway,  off he went to Edinburgh.

And this is where it gets interesting for me. The Guardian reports that some of the crowd who greeted Farange were “activists in the radical left pro-Scottish independence movement” –  as though those who opposed this lunatic’s presence were as lunatic and dangerous as himself and merely off across the other side of the political spectrum. Meanwhile the Independent headlined with “Angry Scottish mob…” Something of a radical mob then. And mobs, as we all know, are to be disdained and feared. While radicals, as we are encouraged to learn, are dangerous nutters. So, I dunno, maybe fascism is just a point of view –  a polite and civilised juxtaposition to those who form radical mobs?

I have ‘no idea’ why the press would exhibit any degree of consternation or confusion over Nigel Farange being told ‘where to go’ when he went to Scotland. Sure, south of the border he might be a bit popular. But that’s got nothing to do with anything. See, dominant cultures forever struggle to understand even the most basic sentiments and dynamics of the cultures they dominate. (Just look at NZ and the reporting on Maori concerns or issues or the way individual actions within Maoridom are twisted and turned by the media to be ‘dangerous’ or ‘unreasonable’)

Anyway, Farage made an incursion into the space of a subjugated culture carrying all the paraphenalia and historical baggage of the dominant culture with him. What the fuck did he expect? A nice sit down and a chat over a cuppa? Didn’t happen.

And as humourously reported in the otherwise somewhat confused Guardian piece –

“…, finally, the harassed and ill-prepared handful of officers were forced to push him back into the Canon’s Gait, slamming its front doors shut, as the demonstrators chanted: “Nigel, you’re a bawbag, Nigel you’re a bawbag, na, na, na, hey!” with gusto.

The etched sign above the Canon Gait’s door read: “Enjoy your visit.”

Ah, if only all politicians with racist policy platforms were afforded such welcomes everywhere.

56 comments on “Irony? Nah.”

  1. ghostrider888 1

    Long Live the ‘Bruce.

  2. Shane Gallagher 2

    It constantly shocked me how ignorant the English were about Scotland. They would arrive in Edinburgh (not the most Scottish of cities) and suddenly go into shock as they discovered that “it is different here! “I can’t understand the accent… ” was often the bewildered next comment. 🙂 They just didn’t get that it was a different country, a different culture.

    • Clockie 2.1

      By the same token the Scots don’t understand why Shetlanders view them the same way they view the English:

      Big fleas have little fleas,
      Upon their backs to bite ’em,
      And little fleas have lesser fleas,
      and so, ad infinitum.

      • Shane Gallagher 2.1.1

        Yes I knew a few Shetlanders in Edinburgh! There were so many internal divisions as well – lowlanders vs. highlanders, east coast vs. west coast, mainlanders vs. islanders, Edinburgh vs. Glasgow… it went on and on!

        • Clockie 2.1.1.1

          The Shetlanders were turned into feudal serfs by the Scots and forced to pay rent in cash or kind to the new lowland Scots “lairds” for land that they had held in their own right previously. They were cruelly exploited and oppressed by the new colonising power of the Scottish crown and it’s representatives, particularly the brutal Earl Patrick Stuart. They later had a system of enclosures forced on them which caused a major exodus in the late 1800’s. That’s why there is such a large number of people with Shetland ancestry in New Zealand relative to the original population. Some of the native Shetlanders still think of themselves as Shetlanders first, British second and grudgingly, Scottish a poor third because they have to admit that Shetland is currently a county of Scotland. 🙂

  3. tamati 3

    Are you confusing UKIP with the BNP?

    • The Al1en 3.1

      Same thing minus the skinheads.

      • Arfamo 3.1.1

        +1 🙂

      • Populuxe1 3.1.2

        Well no, nationalism doesn’t always equate to racisim.

        • felix 3.1.2.1

          Before you go off on one of your thread-derailing sanctimonious bashing-yourself-with-the-wrong-end-of-the-stick tangents, you might like to reflect on the fact that no-one – that’s no-one – said nationalism always equates to racism.

          I point this out so others can easily find the exact moment when you designed your mighty strawman opponent.

          • Populuxe1 3.1.2.1.1

            Before you pucker up your mouth like a cat’s bum, Felix, let us look at the thread:

            tamati: “Are you confusing UKIP with the BNP?”

            The Allen: “Same thing minus the skinheads.”

            The UKIP is a conservative nationalist Euro-skeptic party whereas the BNP actively campaigns against immigrants and contains a strongly racist component.

            I would hardly call that a straw man and I’m sorry you’re that pathetic.

            • felix 3.1.2.1.1.1

              Are you saying you genuinely don’t know the difference between saying “UKIP are racists” and saying “nationalism always equates to racism”?

              Serious question.

              • Populuxe1

                Oooh I can hear those lips puckering up like you were sucking an alum soaked lemon, Felix. The fact of the matter is you are the one picking a fight with a straw man here. I was alluding to the assumption that because the UKIP are a nationalist party that they are comporable to a bunch of racists like the BNP. I’m sorry to are tone deaf to nuance.

                • felix

                  I’m only responding to what you actually said, Pop. Instead of trying to insult me – which any fool can see is never going to work – how about you answer two very simple straight questions.

                  One is a matter of definition, the other is a matter of fact. If you’re correct, answering the questions will prove it.

                  1st, the matter of definition: If you argue against something that no-one has said, that’s a strawman. Do you agree or disagree?

                  2nd, the matter of fact: No-one here said anything about nationalism always equating to racism. Do you agree or disagree?

                  Each question is very straight and has only two possible answers.

                  In the case of the first, if you disagree the onus is on you to show why the definition is incorrect.

                  In the second, if you disagree the onus is on you to show where someone did make such a claim.

                  Ready? Go.

                  • felix

                    Yeah didn’t think so.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Sorry I didn’t jump straight on that, Felix, but it’s the weekend and I have a life.

                      “1st, the matter of definition: If you argue against something that no-one has said, that’s a strawman. Do you agree or disagree?”

                      No, technically a strawman argument is to misrepresent someone’s argument and argue against that – which I specifically did not do. Mine was a tangental or adjunct observation regarding the context.

                      “2nd, the matter of fact: No-one here said anything about nationalism always equating to racism. Do you agree or disagree?”

                      I was responding to the tacit implication in The Allen’s statement “Same thing minus the skinheads.”

                      Does that help, or should I translate it into Aspie?

                    • ghostrider888

                      wotta ’bout Esperanto?
                      😀

                    • felix

                      Well, we’re getting closer.

                      “I was responding to the tacit implication in The Allen’s statement “Same thing minus the skinheads.”

                      Are you saying that The Al1en’s statement suggests that nationalism is always racism or not? Straight answer please, either you are or you aren’t.

                      ghostie: English would be fine, but there’s fuck all chance of that.

                    • felix

                      ps Timestamps tell a different story about your life. You were all over the blog for hours yesterday after your last post in this thread.

                    • ghostrider888

                      hey felix me old china, some interesting reading I linked on O.M; same old same old 😀

                    • prism

                      Popgoestheweasel
                      “No, technically a strawman argument is to misrepresent someone’s argument and argue against that – which I specifically did not do. Mine was a tangental or adjunct observation regarding the context.”

                      Is that called white-anting then?

                    • felix

                      It’s just a distraction.

                      Fact is Pop either misrepresented the argument to make it seem as if someone was saying that nationalism always equates to racism, OR Pop genuinely doesn’t know how to visualise a Venn diagram with more than one circle.

                      There isn’t a third option available that would reconcile with all Pop’s comments in this thread (or if there is, Pop hasn’t thought of it yet.)

                      The short-range forecast is more bullshit, bluster, and personal abuse, all disappearing into a massive memory hole by tomorrow morning.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      “1st, the matter of definition: If you argue against something that no-one has said, that’s a strawman. Do you agree or disagree?”

                      No, technically a strawman argument is to misrepresent someone’s argument and argue against that

                      I’ll just note, in passing, that technically there is no distinction being made here. If you argue against a misrepresentation of what was said, you are in fact arguing against something that ‘no-one has said’ in the conversation. Pop’s version is simply a subset of Felix’s.

                      Further, Pop is wrong. A strawman argument is one made against a man of straw that the speaker has raised up. It doesn’t have to be a misrepresentation of any particular person’s argument.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Also, of some relevance:

                      http://www.thisislincolnshire.co.uk/UKIP-members-Lincolnshire-County-Council-refuse/story-19015707-detail/story.html#axzz2TZGxL7kZ

                      But Chris Pain, leader of the county council’s UKIP group, the official opposition, told today’s annual meeting of the council: “I cannot support this document.
                      “It actually pushes forward the chance of multiculturalism, one of the fundamental things that’s wrong with our society.

                      So there is that.

            • Bill 3.1.2.1.1.2

              ..the BNP actively campaigns against immigrants

              So does UKIP.

              On the other hand, the SNP most certainly doesn’t. So, what was your point again?

        • The Al1en 3.1.2.2

          Same thing minus the skinheads.

  4. A bit like the ‘Men’s Movement’ trying to recruit from NOW.

    Like you say, Bill, a really strange situation, full of irony.

    According to the Guardian George Galloway of Respect (???), Lord Foulkes of Cumnock, a former Labour (???) Scotland Minister and Lord Forsyth of Trumlean, a former Tory Scottish Secretary all confirmed the ‘anti-English’ sentiment of the ‘cyber-nationalists’ and elements of the Scottish Nationalist movement.

    This, apparently, is the great sin. Being angry at a nation that has exploited your nation for centuries (often under cover of racist sentiment) is not good form. Much better to be polite. We are all Gandhians now, except …

    Being angry at such impoliteness – calling them “yobbo, fascist scum” – is perfectly understandable and, presumably, forgivable.

    This has all the hallmarks of a media stunt by Farage. Apparently, he appeared at the pub, without telling the publican he would be there, and held an unannounced press conference, yet there was a group of protestors ready to greet him.

    Farage warned that the protesters who forced him to flee a press conference in Edinburgh and seek police protection, had exposed a “pretty ugly” face of Scottish nationalism that is “akin to fascism”.”

    But Foulkes was highly critical of Farage for failing to prepare for his visit to Scotland. “He didn’t help. He came up, went into a pub without getting permission from the publican and held an impromptu press conference. There were students protesting and he dealt with them in a peremptory and unsympathetic manner.

    • Bill 4.1

      Like I said in the post, some ‘interesting’ dynamics start to play out in the dominant culture.

      So, now we have George Galloway and others of Labour or ex-Labour essentially offering backing to Farage who has branded those expressing anti-fascist sentiments “yobbo, fascist scum.” And, of course, by extention, the implication is that the SNP is fascist and that independence for Scotland is being driven by fascist tendencies that express themselves as a deep antipathy towards the English. (Note: antipathy towards the English establishment etc and antipathy towards English people are two entirely different things. The former is fairly widespread. The latter isn’t.)

      Meanwhile –

      Mike Shaw, president of Edinburgh University Students Association’s Socialist Society, tweeted: “Ukip protest yesterday branded as ‘anti-English’. As a proud Englishman, arrested yesterday for protesting, I dispute these claims.”

      And here be two videos of the whole debacle that, let’s face it, show that things weren’t exactly ugly or out of hand….which raises questions over the reactions coming from current and ex-Labour Party sources and the quarters of the ‘establishment press’.

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/video/2013/may/17/ukip-nigel-farage-protesters-edinburgh-video

      http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/ukip-leader-nigel-farage-hits-back-at-fascist-hecklers-in-edinburgh-pub-8619819.html

      But then, maybe it ought not to be forgotten that the UK Labour Party and the UK Conservative Party have formed an alliance to oppose any talk of independence and (it could be argued) squelch the democratic aspirations of ordinary people.

      • andyS 4.1.1

        I completely agree with your sentiments regarding the LibLabCon alliance to keep the UK in the EU.

        UKIP essentially represent a protest vote – they attract voters from across the political spectrum.
        In the recent South Shields By Election, the labour strong hold vacated by David Milliband’s departure to NY, UKIP picked up 24% of the vote.

        The Lib Dems got around 300 odd votes, half that of the BNP and marginally more than the Monster Raving Loony Party

        [I obviously expressed no such sentiment and if you ascribe things to me that I didn’t say again you’ll be enjoying a ban – Bill]

      • Puddleglum 4.1.2

        Thanks Bill for all the extra information. I was struggling to find evidence of the ‘near riot’ conditions implied by the headlines and commentary.

        It looked, so far as I could tell from the video I was looking at, a boisterous but non-violent affair. In the second video link you mention, one protestor explicitly states that it was the policies that were not welcome in Scotland.

        I’d like to hear how the commentators, Galloway et al. make their distinctions between ‘anti-English’ (i.e., racist) sentiment and ‘anti-English control’ (i.e., nationalism) sentiment.

  5. For all that the UKIP seems to consist of Little-England conservatives who’ve taken the concept of English eccentricity to a level easily confused with mental illness, the fact is that if you’re part of an angry mob hurling abuse at some guy in the street, you’re not the good guy – the scum present is actually you and your mates, not the bloke you’re screeching at.

    • Bill 5.1

      I think chanting “Nigel, you’re a bawbag, Nigel you’re a bawbag, na, na, na, hey!” is pretty funny and not at all screeching.

      And they did allow the press conference to proceed. They didn’t just shut it down, but asked questions of the guy and what not. (See the vid link above)

      • Psycho Milt 5.1.1

        I did see the video. As reported, it consists of a mob abusing this bloke Farage. Like I said, if you’re part of an angry mob shouting abuse at someone in the street, don’t try and kid yourself you’re the good guy in the scene – you’re so not.

        • The Al1en 5.1.1.1

          Surely that’s all relative. One man’s angry mob is another man’s act of defiance against a divisive bigot and a racist.
          The way I see it, the baw baggers, even though they’re shit at football, were good to the man.

    • Murray Olsen 5.2

      I’d say shouting at the bad guy doesn’t make you a bad guy at all. I don’t see much difference between the UKIP and the BNP. I have English friends who invest a lot of hope in the UKIP, mainly because of disillusion with the Tories of either tie colour. I think they’ll be sadly disappointed.

  6. andyS 6

    The Daily Mash almost got it right

    “Farage attacked by Scottish Farage”

    http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/politics/politics-headlines/farage-attacked-by-scottish-farage-2013051769143

    The Scot can’t see beyond their own dogma. They want independence from England but want to be part of the supra national state of the EU, where presumably they will turn into another Greece or Cyprus.

    Personally speaking, as a Brit, they can keep their country and provide us with our own little North Korea. Stuff them

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      they can keep their country and provide us with our own little North Korea.

      That’s hilarious.

      I don’t blame the Scots for wanting to GTFO of your little Kingdom.

    • karol 6.2

      All natonalisms are not the same. the Scots anger comes from a position of being dominated and oppressed by the English. Farage’s motivation is to maintain the dominance of those of Anglo-Saxon-descent dominance in a multicultural England. England (and Britain) is still largely run by (and for) the wealthiest English classes.

      I guess there’s an attraction for Scotland to be able to appeal to the EU on social/national justice issues, rather than follow the Brit government with it’s stronger allegiance to “neoliberal” US government.

      It could be that it’s a case of a small independent country in a super-power world, wanting to choose allies that will be more sympathetic to their cause.

      • Colonial Viper 6.2.1

        As long as they stay out of the Eurozone they’ll be OK.

      • Bill 6.2.2

        If I can attempt to draw a parallel (which is kind of what I intended to do when I first thought of writing the post)

        Farange and UKIP kind of broadly equate with the mind sets of the likes of Don Brash and ACT – roughly.

        And the call for Scottish independence roughly equates with the call for tino rangatiratanga. And the press and establishment reacts in very similar ways in both locations when approaching issues of self determination – ie, fear monger, demonise and misdirect.

        • Colonial Viper 6.2.2.1

          Ahhhh Farage running his own Iwi/Kiwi campaign stunt.

          • Bill 6.2.2.1.1

            Farage (now that I’ve bothered to check how to spell his name) is all about Brits/Foreigners in his campaigning…foreigners/immigrants getting unfair and advantageous access to social provisions over ‘hard working, salt of the earth’ Brits.

            Sooo… yeah, basically the same shit.

            And he gets called on it and swathes of the establishment rush to condemn those who called him on it.

            And somewhat as an aside – note the fairly common mindset espoused by andyS that would have us believe that [choose between the following interchangable designations] foreigners/immigrants/scots/maori are lesser scum who never had it so good, couldn’t possibly manage their own affairs, should be grateful for the largess of the long suffering peoples of the dominant cultureand should therefore ‘quit their whining’ and/or fuck off to dystopia?

          • Bill 6.2.2.2.1

            Go read the principles their immigration policy is to be based on which, among all the misleading, scaremongering bullshit is this…

            UKIP would withdraw from the European Convention of Human Rights and the European Convention on Refugees. This would enable us to deport foreign criminal and terrorist suspects where desirable. UKIP would allow genuine asylum applications in accordance with our international obligations.

            Notice that they’re intent would be to withdraw from recognised frameworks that provide for international obligations and then allow asylum in accord with their own unilateral definition of their ‘international obligations’….ie, most likely none.

            • andyS 6.2.2.2.1.1

              [deleted]

              [lprent: currently banned – doubling the ban for leaving comments. Now 13th June. ]

        • ghostrider888 6.2.2.3

          ‘n that

    • Bill 6.3

      :roll:

      And so adherence to the confused discourse of the dominant culture results in the demonisation of anti-fascists as….fascists…who would form a hard line communist state…within the auspices of the EU. Confused much?

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  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    13 hours ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    13 hours ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    13 hours ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    frogblogBy Catherine Delahunty
    13 hours ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    frogblogBy Gareth Hughes
    14 hours ago
  • What we are expected to believe
    In recent months I have become increasingly concerned at the state of bullshit in this country. Bullshit, as Harry Frankfurt famously wrote, is distinguished not by its intentionally negative truth value (those are lies) but its absence of intentional truth… ...
    14 hours ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    15 hours ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    15 hours ago
  • Why are whistleblowers being prosecuted as spies?
    Whistleblowers are a ‘check’ on government, corporate or organisational secrecy and malfeasance. I recently read Tim Shipman’s preview of the Chilcot report into the origins of the Tony Blair-led UK engagement in the US’s invasion of Iraq, which looked at… ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    15 hours ago
  • Spend and Tax
    As a general rule, New Zealanders want more public spending. Surveys (such as the 2014 Election Survey) show consistent support for increases in spending, particularly in the areas of health, education, housing, law enforcement, public transport and the environment (in… ...
    Briefing PapersBy Brian Easton
    16 hours ago
  • The birth place of the artist
    It may not be the best reason to fund the arts. It’s certainly not the only one. But travelling to the small city of Rovereto, at the feet of the Italian dolomites, reminded me of the lasting influence that a… ...
    Bat bean beamBy Giovanni Tiso
    22 hours ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the rise of the far right, and battle bots
    In his victory speech at the Cannes film festival this week, the British film director Ken Loach warned that the rise of far right parties in Europe was being fuelled by the economic policies of austerity, and manifested in a… ...
    23 hours ago
  • Why Corrections prevented Tony Robertson from getting treatment in prison
    Tony Robertson was sentenced to eight years in prison for indecently assaulting a five year old girl in 2005. He was considered a high risk prisoner and the parole board declined to release him on four separate occasions.  He was… ...
    PunditBy Roger Brooking
    1 day ago
  • Have We a Housing Policy?
    The Prime Minister’s announcement that there is nothing new about homelessness is both an example of his strengths in reassuring the public that there is never really a problem and the weaknesses of the government’s policy approach..read more ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • Have We a Housing Policy?
    The Prime Minister’s announcement that there is nothing new about homelessness is both an example of his strengths in reassuring the public that there is never really a problem and the weaknesses of the government’s policy approach..read more ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • Climate denial arguments fail a blind test
    As we saw in the recent legal ruling against Peabody coal, arguments and myths that are based in denial of the reality of human-caused global warming rarely withstand scientific scrutiny. In a new study published in Global Environmental Change, a team led by Stephen Lewandowsky… ...
    1 day ago
  • Palmerston North librarians gather to support UCOL colleagues
    At 5pm today at the UCOL Library, representatives of library staff from the City Library, Massey, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa, and local schools will meet in a show of support for UCOL Library staff whose jobs are threatened. “We all… ...
    1 day ago
  • Accountability for Iraq?
    Six years after it was established, the Chilcot Inquiry into the UK's involvement in the Iraq war is finally about to report back. And from the sound of it, its going to pin the blame squarely where it belongs: on… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Accountability for Iraq?
    Six years after it was established, the Chilcot Inquiry into the UK's involvement in the Iraq war is finally about to report back. And from the sound of it, its going to pin the blame squarely where it belongs: on… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Not Quite But Getting There
    It seems that Labour might have finally gotten the memo about getting it’s A into G but perhaps not quite digested the content. Still it’s a start. The last month has seen a steady stream of both Labour and Little… ...
    1 day ago
  • Climate change: The latest inventory
    The annual inventory report [PDF] of our greenhouse gas emissions was released on Friday. The headline data: emissions are still increasing: There's been another "recalculation" in the last 12 months, making year-to-year comparisons difficult. Naurally, this seems to have shifted… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Climate change: The latest inventory
    The annual inventory report [PDF] of our greenhouse gas emissions was released on Friday. The headline data: emissions are still increasing: There's been another "recalculation" in the last 12 months, making year-to-year comparisons difficult. Naurally, this seems to have shifted… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Australia lets kiwi detainees literally rot
    What are our "closest friends" Australia doing to kiwis awaiting deportation? Letting them literally rot away in prison due to substandard medical care:A New Zealander held at an Australian immigration detention centre will find out today if his leg has… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Australia lets kiwi detainees literally rot
    What are our "closest friends" Australia doing to kiwis awaiting deportation? Letting them literally rot away in prison due to substandard medical care:A New Zealander held at an Australian immigration detention centre will find out today if his leg has… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • CRL already impacting land use on city fringe
    The City Rail Link will be one of the most transformational projects Auckland has ever seen. Perhaps nowhere else will see experience that transformation more than the inner west of the isthmus which effectively gets picked up and moved much closer to… ...
    1 day ago
  • CRL already impacting land use on city fringe
    The City Rail Link will be one of the most transformational projects Auckland has ever seen. Perhaps nowhere else will see experience that transformation more than the inner west of the isthmus which effectively gets picked up and moved much closer to… ...
    1 day ago
  • National should give us our $13,000 back
    We all know that National works for the rich and screw over ordinary New Zealanders to funnel wealth upwards into the pockets of its rich mates. But how bad have they been? $13,000 bad:Yesterday, Mr Little said that since National… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • National should give us our $13,000 back
    We all know that National works for the rich and screw over ordinary New Zealanders to funnel wealth upwards into the pockets of its rich mates. But how bad have they been? $13,000 bad:Yesterday, Mr Little said that since National… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Access: The Universal Basic Income and its implications for citizenship
    The suggestion about a possible Universal Basic Income (UBI) was only one of numerous suggestions to come out of Labour’s Future of Work initiative. This a wide-ranging policy discussion that the Party’s economic development spokesman, Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson,… ...
    1 day ago
  • Access: The Universal Basic Income and its implications for citizenship
    The suggestion about a possible Universal Basic Income (UBI) was only one of numerous suggestions to come out of Labour’s Future of Work initiative. This a wide-ranging policy discussion that the Party’s economic development spokesman, Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson,… ...
    1 day ago
  • Review: The Block Party
    Did New Zealand’s 'premier urban music' event live up to the hype?   Photo: Nicole Semitara Hunt ‘Old school’ was the name of the game on Friday night at The Block Party, where several thousand converged on ASB… ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: The media awards are dead – long live the media awards!
    Friday's Canon Media Awards was the most interesting instance of the long-running national ceremony in a long time, maybe ever. There were notable insurgencies – The SpinOff took two awards from 11 first-time nominations, Radio NZ's The Wireless won Website… ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: The media awards are dead – long live the media awards!
    Friday's Canon Media Awards was the most interesting instance of the long-running national ceremony in a long time, maybe ever. There were notable insurgencies – The SpinOff took two awards from 11 first-time nominations, Radio NZ's The Wireless won Website… ...
    1 day ago
  • New research confirms water fluoridation does not cause bone cancers
    The most common type of bone cancer is Osteosarcoma. Image credit:  Osteosarcoma This time for Texas. A new study confirms what other researchers have found elsewhere. It is reported in this recent paper: Archer, N. P., Napier, T. S., & Villanacci, J. F. (2016).… ...
    1 day ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • Selfie-takers think they’re the greatest
    Science says otherwise.  “People often perceive themselves as more attractive and likable than others [perceive them to be].” This is the cutting conclusion from a new study that has found you're probably not as great as you think you… ...
    1 day ago
  • UCOL cutting the staff who lifted student results
    UCOL needs to halt its proposed cuts to student support services now that it knows those services are improving student outcomes. On Friday, in an email to all staff, UCOL released its provisional 2015 Educational Performance Indicator (EPI) results which… ...
    1 day ago
  • Another Road Only Harbour Crossing on the Cards?
    The absence of rail as well as walking and cycling options to the North Shore has been considered an oversight by many probably ever since the Harbour Bridge was first approved for construction over 60 years ago. While Skypath will… ...
    2 days ago
  • Leaked UK Briefing Shows NZ-EU Trade Deal is a Sham
    Press Release – New Zealand First Party Rt Hon Winston Peters New Zealand First Leader Member of Parliament for Northland 23 MAY 2016 Leaked UK Briefing Shows NZ-EU Trade Deal is a Sham The Prime Ministers EU trade deal… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on bank scandals and air crashes
    Libor. It stands for the London Interbank Offered rate. Back in 2012, Libor became synonymous with a scandal involving the dodgy manipulation of how interest rates were fixed – during the years before and after the Global Financial Crisis –… ...
    2 days ago
  • March Against Monsanto
    Press Release – TPP Action Waikato March Against Monsanto (MAM)is a global form of action aimed at informing the public, calling into question the long term health risks of genetically modified foods and Roundup ready crops.Today Waikato people rally, at… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago

  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    6 hours ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    7 hours ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    7 hours ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    11 hours ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    13 hours ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    13 hours ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    13 hours ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    14 hours ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    1 day ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    2 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    3 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    4 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    4 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    4 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    4 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    4 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    4 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    4 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    4 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    5 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    5 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    5 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    5 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    5 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    5 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    6 days ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    6 days ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    6 days ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago
  • Under-reporting shows need to review quota system
    The Government must launch an independent review into New Zealand’s 30-year-old Quota Management System following a new report suggesting gross under-reporting of catch in the New Zealand fishing industry, Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker says.  “The Auckland University report found… ...
    1 week ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
    Some people call newspapers “tomorrow’s fish and chips” but this week’s news around a mega media merger is not an issue we should discard. Media giants Fairfax and APN News & Media announced they were in discussions to merge their… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
    Some people call newspapers “tomorrow’s fish and chips” but this week’s news around a mega media merger is not an issue we should discard. Media giants Fairfax and APN News & Media announced they were in discussions to merge their… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • National puts Easter trading in the too hard basket
    All Labour MPs will vote against National’s move to leave Easter trading laws up to councils, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain-Lees Galloway says.  “Despite this being a conscience vote, Labour MPs are united in their opposition to the Government’s moves… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National puts Easter trading in the too hard basket
    All Labour MPs will vote against National’s move to leave Easter trading laws up to councils, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain-Lees Galloway says.  “Despite this being a conscience vote, Labour MPs are united in their opposition to the Government’s moves… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Law Commission speaks up for domestic violence survivors
    I want to give kudos to the Minister for Justice for getting the Law Commission to review options for how our justice system responds when victims of domestic violence kill their partners. This is a relatively discrete piece of work… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 weeks ago

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