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Just how wrong can you get it?

Written By: - Date published: 9:03 pm, December 6th, 2012 - 160 comments
Categories: community democracy, labour - Tags:

Word is that a senior Labour MP (who will go unnamed) has been lobbying National Council to put rules in place for party members who participate in the blogosphere. It appears they don’t like the idea that members might voice their concerns about the way their party is run. I can only assume that there would have to be some kind of a process whereby members who broke these rules would face a loss of membership or some other form of censure.

A cynic might feel compelled to point out the hypocrisy of such a policy. Especially when John Tamihere has compared the party to the head-hunters on national TV and then had the party leader intervene to get his membership approved. Double especially when Shane Jones gets to attack the Green Party on matters he holds no portfolio for and yet faces no censure. And that’s not even talking about the way caucus members themselves have brought the party into disrepute with their online antics.

But rather than be that cynical, I’ll just stick to pointing out the fact that the Labour Party membership is the lowest it has been in the history of the party and that to try to introduce such a proscriptive and draconian policy would only encourage that number to sink even lower.

It’s also antithetical to every theory of organising in the modern age that I can think of. Almost without exception member and volunteer based organisations are opening up their discourse and flattening their hierarchy as they realise that in the age of social media people need to feel connected and that they have a voice if you want them to join your organisation and help build your cause. In this light, telling people that joining the party means shutting the f*ck up on the internet isn’t really a winner.

160 comments on “Just how wrong can you get it?”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    “… (who will go unnamed) …”

    Why?

    • IrishBill 1.1

      Because I’m hoping they see the error of their ways and I don’t want to paint them into a corner.

      • Lanthanide 1.1.1

        Nah, just name ‘em.

        • mickysavage 1.1.1.1

          Yep. The members are wondering who should be persuaded/cajoled/forced into early retirement.

        • felix 1.1.1.2

          Yeah fuck ‘em. And what micky said.

        • Rich 1.1.1.3

          I’d “duck” that one…

        • paul andersen 1.1.1.4

          Ive had a gutsful of allegations against un-named people on this website. if you have proper proof and want to be taken seriously, for phucks sake name names, if not shut up!!!

          • One Tāne Huna 1.1.1.4.1

            Oh noes! Will you have a really big tanty?

            Anonymous public allegations have been a feature of politics since, um, I dunno, politics was invented. cf: Roman graffiti, etc.

            Get used to it.

            • lurgee 1.1.1.4.1.1

              As are secret meetings and decisions in camera. But everyone was crying foul about them the other day.

              I suspect a bit of murk in this. Someone may have said something in passing to someone, and it is now being blown up into a full paranoid wankfest. Actually naming someone would destroy the story. Even if it isn’t true, if it runs for a few days it will add to the sense of persecution that some here seem to thrive on.

      • dancerwaitakere 1.1.2

        They wont feel painted in a corner, after all, we just sit in rooms behind dark curtains. 

        What is threatening about us?

        Oh wait…

        You mean…

        That was all bullshit? Perhaps bloggers are real people.  

      • burt 1.1.3

        IrishBill

        Name em, for goodness sake – who the hell wants a party where the only way to silence some fool is to make them so scared of being humiliated that they shut up.

        You make a great point about the folly of their position, I agree entirely with what you have posted in this thread. If they are agitating to shut up party members so party members only talk the party line then lets know who these buffoons are. They are out of touch with the way of the world today and we deserve to know who they are so they don’t fool us into thinking they have the capability to represent us.

        • David H 1.1.3.1

          I don’t believe it I’m going to quote Burt

          “Name em, for goodness sake – who the hell wants a party where the only way to silence some fool is to make them so scared of being humiliated that they shut up. ”

          Burt’s got a point, the only way to shut a fool up is to expose them to even more ridicule, not only that, the speculation as to who will start. As soon as I read the post a name had already popped unbidden into my mind.

          Buckle up Burt, cos National’s going bye bye.

  2. Crimson Nile 2

    But rather than be that cynical, I’ll just stick to pointing out the fact that the Labour Party membership is the lowest it has been in the history of the party

    Surely it is more useful to have party followers who will passively take instructions, rather than active party members who may cause issues and express dissent.

    By the way, have you noticed how the Labour party machinery has been declining all over the country? This makes getting favoured candidates centrally selected a very easy process.

    • IrishBill 2.1

      By the way, have you noticed how the Labour party machinery has been declining all over the country? 

      Yes. And the party vote and the number of electorates the party holds.

  3. PlanetOrphan 3

    Blinded by the “Ideological Brilliance” coming out their own arse M8!

    Some DunnoKeyo phrases come to mind …

    “We have a Mandate”
    “The Party Line”
    “Off the Record”
    “Plausible Deniability”
    “Back Room Boys”
    “Old Boys Club”

    That’s it, no one’s gonna vote for a Gnat clone party , c yas :-)

  4. hush minx 4

    But if they don’t read blogs why would they worry about what people say on them? Or is it that they are concerned that members might do some independent thinking, oh a bit like they did at conference….?

    • fender 4.1

      Yes Little says the blogs don’t vote although he may need to rethink that one because folks interested in politics always vote. (people who talk about Little being a future leader think again)

      If these blog denier fools were interested in democracy they would take notice of what the people they claim to represent actually have to say. If having some home truths voiced upsets them they are in the wrong job or the wrong Party.

      • burt 4.1.1

        fender

        The whole basic mentality of solidarity must actually be challenged by blogs. Basically ‘we all talk as one’ is a founding principle for the Labour movement. Tough times for Labour…

        IMHO it’s a good time for Labour to return to it’s root’s – if that means party vote share of 30% then so be it. It’s a workers rights party not a everything to everyone party like it’s got away with being in a controlled media environment….

  5. just saying 5

    What sort of rules Irish Bill?

    On a possibly unrelated note, my membership has not yet been ratified though I paid my dues a couple of weeks ago.

    • lprent 5.1

      You will find that it takes a while. Head office is severely under staffed. Last I heard, the sudden rush of members put them literally weeks behind.

  6. Ron 6

    Maybe David will put a good word in for you. Seems to be the way to get membership

  7. rosy 7

    Attempting to censor the everyday conversation (apparently by non-voters that nobody pays any attention to) on the internet. Really, that’s just too funny…

    As for controlling it – imagine what it would take to work out the pseudonyms… and on the pseudonym point the reason for having them has just been established beyond doubt.

    No chance that this will be taken seriously.

    • weka 7.1

      Not to mention what might happen if they kicked Lynn Prentice out of the party. Honestly, you can tell this hasn’t been thought through.
       
      On the other hand, should all conversations held by members, esp higher up members, be fair game to be discussed on the internet? There is some kind of irony here, and I do feel somewhat uncomfortable with speculating about something that someone might have said – sorry IB, that’s not a dig at you, I’m just imagining hypothetical scenarios where this might be a problem.
       
      On the other other hand, if the Labour party hadn’t been so dismissive of its members, esp those members that spend time in the blogosphere, it might now be getting treated with more respect.
       
      The other issue is would the new rules apply only to blogging? What about other media? No letters to the editor? No commenting in discussions online? No talking out loud at public meetings?

      • rosy 7.1.1

        “The other issue is would the new rules apply only to blogging? What about other media? No letters to the editor? No commenting in discussions online? No talking out loud at public meetings?

        Yep, I can’t see why there would be different rules for different media.

        There is a valid issue of bringing the party that you are a member of into disrepute, but that’s a quite different to some people talking on a blog. There are, I guess, already rules around that, and John Tamihere’s membership shows that bar is set very high. I can’t see any reason for different rules for blogging and commenting on blogs.

      • lprent 7.1.2

        Got raised in NZ Council when the Tamihere membership went through from what I have heard. But I have literally been too busy to follow up.

  8. Lanthanide 8

    How to prove your political party is stuck in the past:

    Step 1: Try to censor people on the internet.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if whatever politician this was didn’t understand the difference between “the internet” or “the web” anyway.

    • QoT 8.1

      Step 2: Assume you can really identify who a person is on the internet, especially on sites you have no control over.

      I’d dearly love to see the logistical planning involved. Sourcing the naughty comments, doxing the commenters’ handles, comparing to the membership list … but let’s be honest, the whole point of any policy change would clearly be to punish members whose identities are already well-documented (and who have been saying things said senior MP doesn’t like.)

      • mickysavage 8.1.1

        You would be surprised QoT at the angst the Standard has caused some Labour MPs. 

      • GregJ 8.1.2

        They just need to set up a special team to coordinate and carry out a thorough “investigation” of these heretics…they could even dress in nice Party colours…perhaps something like this one

        Sorry – I’ll get my coat.

      • IrishBill 8.1.3

        I’d dearly love to see the logistical planning involved. Sourcing the naughty comments, doxing the commenters’ handles, comparing to the membership list …

        There’s already a bit of that kind of thing going on. It’s why I won’t comment on Red Alert.

        • the sprout 8.1.3.1

          same

        • dancerwaitakere 8.1.3.2

          There really must be a point where we decide that we don’t give a shit. 

          Who cares if Scary Clare, Mumbles or the rest of the gang put us on a naughty list?

          Lets see them try and win an election without foot soldiers, should they try to censor the internet. 

  9. QoT 9

    … I’m kind of tickled by the notion (taking the scenario of the post to the extreme) that Labour could theoretically ban its own members from commenting on its own blog.

  10. jaymam 10

    So, who’s a senior Labour MP who has been criticised a lot lately on blogs? I can think of only one. I bet it’s him.

    • Te Reo Putake 10.1

      Dya mean David Shearer?

      • QoT 10.1.1

        Ah, the joys of semantics … does IB mean senior as in power level, or senior as in tenure? Wheels within wheels …

        • fender 10.1.1.1

          Yes theres a few to choose from, despite being told to pull their socks up they would rather make barefoot anyone with constructive criticism.

        • KhandallaMan 10.1.1.2

          Queen Darling

          “Senior” in Labour parlance means you are inside the clique supporting/using Shearer.
          “Not Senior”, “Junior” etc means you are about to be purged.

          Examples of “Senior” are people wrecking safe seats like Clare Curran and Chris Hipkins or List only orphans like Fenton, Cosgrove and Ardern.

          Examples of “Junior” (about to be purged) are strong seat winners like Cunliffe, Manhuta and Wall.  

          Simple, when you get the hang of it.

          The person to whom IB is referring is Clare Curran.
          Her immediate target is Colonial Viper. 
          You and I are next.

           

          • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.2.1

            Her immediate target is Colonial Viper.

            She’d wreck the reputation of Red Alert’s confidentiality and security if she was actually behind anything like that, or behind any move to gag ordinary party members; RA is after all a blog site set up for the Labour Party. Nothing makes people run from a blog faster than sysops you can’t have confidence in.

          • burt 10.1.1.2.2

            When they came for the Colonial Vipers I didn’t protest because I wasn’t a Colonial Viper…

          • QoT 10.1.1.2.3

            Ha. Good luck censuring someone who isn’t a party member. Though I am now going to change all my passwords out of sheer online paranoia.

      • jaymam 10.1.2

        No I don’t know who it is. However if there is someone important in the Labour Party who wants to stop members expressing their views, that person and his/her mates should resign right now.
        Look what happened in the 1980s when Labour let Roger Douglas and Richard Prebble and others have free reign.

    • millsy 10.2

      That’s a big clue — I think I might know who it is now…

      Doesnt really suprise me, mind you.

  11. Skinny 11

    That’s laughable big brother stuff ‘censorship is good’ ‘freedom of speech is bad.’ 

    This from an ‘inclusive’  Labour party or should that be the new excommunicated    Labour party. 

    Hmm good luck putting that one to the affiliates.

  12. Anne 12

    telling people that joining the party means shutting the f*ck up on the internet isn’t really a winner.

    What about their own blogsite “Red Alert”? Party members won’t be allowed to participate unless they have prior approval? I thought we fought a World War to prevent fascism and authoritarian regimes taking over our lands.

    Would someone like to kindly tell this parliamentary Labour miscreant that a bit of honest reflection on certain very recent internal Labour events may assist him/her to comprehend why some in the Party have felt duty bound to be critical.

  13. Sam 13

    So let me get this straight, you’re launching an attack on the entire Labour party because somebody told you something that you can’t prove, and even if you did prove it it’s actually just one person’s action/opinion, that is, trying to convince a bunch of other people of something they believe with no ability to say for sure whether said opinion is actually going anywhere?

    How fucking desperate.

    • QoT 13.1

      I guess that’s what IB’s post looks like after you’ve filtered it through Derail-O-Vision.

    • felix 13.2

      What makes you think he can’t prove it?

    • RedLogix 13.3

      I guess the problem Sam is:

      1. The person is not some ordinary member. It’s someone with considerable experience and organisational power. That anyone else in the Labour Party has treated this risible idea with anything other than a polite snigger suggests that either this person has a lot of clout, or the idea has fallen on fertile ground.

      Either way a bad look for the Labour Party as a whole.

      2. Sure it’s one ‘persons’ opinion. But then again Irish Bill has been an author here at The Standard least as long as I can remember and I joined up within a few weeks of when this blog began. Over that time IB has written many dozens of posts on numerous Labour Party topics and has earned his own reputation and credibility with many regulars. You can’t fake that.

      3. But you are right in this sense that until IB chooses for his own reasons to name the person he’s got in mind then it is more in the nature of a ‘warning shot over the bow’ rather than a direct hit. Fair enough.

      Doesn’t stop the rest of us expressing our astonishment at the stupidity of the idea all the same.

    • Colonial Viper 13.4

      I have personally witnessed some of the backstory to this post. And it is a damn nasty and personal business behind the scenes. If anything, IB has sugarcoated the facts of the situation with his restraint (that’s not a criticism btw).

  14. the pigman 14

    You won’t name them because you want them to see the error of their ways? Well, that’ll be effective.

    I’m not Labour caucus apologist, but your refusal to name this MP gives this whole article the smack of smear.

    Prove me wrong.

      • the pigman 14.1.1

        Sadly your link didn’t work QoT. Clearly the presence of both the word “man” and “pig” in my nickname has tickled your interest, since you’re still trying to paint everything I say in sexist, gendered terms. Keep it up!

        • galeandra 14.1.1.1

          Gendered as in prickly, hoggy? While semantic slippage evokes the thought of a prick, I have to say that your point is small enough to be missed.

          • the pigman 14.1.1.1.1

            This behaviour on The Standard reminds me of a great passage from Lord of the Flies:

            “There were no words, and no movements but the tearing of teeth and claws.”

            • Galeandra 14.1.1.1.1.1

              This behaviour on The Standard reminds me of a great passage from Lord of the Flies:

              “There were no words, and no movements but the tearing of teeth and claws.”

              Yeah, you’re right. The ‘Beast’ emerged from their caucus , it was the ugly expression the cabal of power-hungry black-gowned hunters, the suits, who resisted the attempts of Simon the meek and mild to unpick the real nature of their society’s ills.

              Now remind me again what this post’s supposedly about? Who are the victims in this? CV and a few others seem to be in the sights of the Thinkcrime investigators, and it’s a bit rich for the pigman to start blaming the littluns.

              btw with the moniker you’ve chosen, better watch out. The inquisition’ll be coming for you next.

        • QoT 14.1.1.2

          Nah, I was being snarky about your pointlessly aggressive tone. Try this link to get the point.

          • the pigman 14.1.1.2.1

            Well sometimes one lady’s “pointlessly aggressive tone” is another pigman’s probing sarcasm, but I enjoyed your pic so let’s leave it at that.

    • weka 14.2

      How do you smear someone without naming them?

      • the pigman 14.2.1

        You smear the Party, and even better the ABC club/Shearer (again, who I am no apologist for).

        You need only read the thread to see all the assumptions people are leaping to without a shred of evidence.

        • felix 14.2.1.1

          “You smear the Party, and even better the ABC club/Shearer”

          Where’s that, pigman? I don’t see anything in the post that points to, or even hints at the ABC club or Shearer. Of course if hearing that someone in Labour is being a fuckwit makes you immediately think of those people, then they’ve got bigger problems than this,

          “You need only read the thread to see all the assumptions people are leaping to without a shred of evidence.”

          Really? I see one person (Kandallah Man) leaping to one assumption, twice. Which is still only one assumption. What fucking thread are you reading?

          • the pigman 14.2.1.1.1

            One clearly needs a thick hide to survive on the standard against what quickly becomes a lynch mob of abuse… ergh.

            The obvious drawing of assumptions by people is not necessarily translated into public accusations/people naming names. But since you’re not going to read through the thread, I’ll pick out the people naming/publicly drawing assumptions:

            “Rich 1.1.1.3
            7 December 2012 at 11:34 am
            I’d “duck” that one…”

            “fender 8.1.1.2
            6 December 2012 at 10:47 pm
            That will explain their weird behaviour as they must taking tranquilisers for the anxiety.

            Is it the feathered one I wonder.”

            “@dancerwaitakere 8.1.3.2
            7 December 2012 at 12:09 pm
            There really must be a point where we decide that we don’t give a shit.

            Who cares if Scary Clare, Mumbles or the rest of the gang put us on a naughty list?”

            “jaymam 10
            6 December 2012 at 10:19 pm
            So, who’s a senior Labour MP who has been criticised a lot lately on blogs? I can think of only one. I bet it’s him.”
            Olwyn 10.1.2.1
            7 December 2012 at 1:01 pm
            +1

            Reply
            jaymam 10.1.2.1.1
            7 December 2012 at 1:17 pm
            Does anyone know who voted to resurrect Roger Douglas after he was sacked by Lange, and are they still in the Labour Party?

            Reply
            millsy 10.2
            7 December 2012 at 7:51 am
            That’s a big clue — I think I might know who it is now…

            Doesnt really suprise me, mind you.”

            “KhandallaMan 20
            6 December 2012 at 11:47 pm
            Only a PR professional from Dunedin South with a degree in anthropology would try to censor the Internet. ”

            “Jane 20.3
            7 December 2012 at 6:52 am
            It can’t be Claire, surely she would know better than to suggest something like this, maybe someone like Annette King trying to find a way to shutdown this annoying interweb thingy.”

            And fuck it,m I am not reading past post 20, because this is taking too much time and I don’t want to re-read this thread.

            Answer me straight Felix, do you really consider that this post not naming the culprit doesn’t have the effect of causing people to draw assumptions/speculate about the identity of the person? I wouldn’t have thought that’s exactly a controversial statement.

            • Pascal's bookie 14.2.1.1.1.1

              Those time stamps are funny. What are they all about?

            • Olwyn 14.2.1.1.1.2

              You put my +1 next to the wrong quote, which was this one by Jayman:

              “No I don’t know who it is. However if there is someone important in the Labour Party who wants to stop members expressing their views, that person and his/her mates should resign right now. Look what happened in the 1980s when Labour let Roger Douglas and Richard Prebble and others have free reign.”

              I am not an insider and have no idea as to who said what and to whom, but I agree with Jayman that someone important in the LP ought not to be stopping members from expressing their views, and also that members should be vigilant in trying ensure that we do not get another round like the 80s.

            • felix 14.2.1.1.1.3

              Nice one piggy, as Pb says those are almost all dated after my comment, except for one that I already noted from Kandallah Man and two that don’t do what you said they would.

              For an example of what “leaping to assumptions” looks like for future reference, try this.

  15. gobsmacked 15

    Irish Bill’s second paragraph is the clincher here.

    Personally I don’t mind a bit of ruthless party discipline when there are elections to be won. Sure, round up all who show insufficient loyalty to the Cause, stick them in a dungeon, do whatever it takes. But start at the bloody top. Even the most rabid ranter on a blog can’t have the public impact of a Shane Jones or Trevor Mallard or John Tamihere. I’m still waiting for my invite from Q & A.

    We aren’t shutting up because they aren’t. They could change that any time they like. Or be made to, by the leader. If he was one.

    • One Tāne Huna 15.1

      “We aren’t shutting up because they aren’t. They could change that any time they like.”

      I suspect it would take something more than that to get us lot to shut up :)

  16. DexterX 16

    They need to go to the source and ban free and contrary thinking or views – once the ban has been adhered and enforced blog posts won’t matter.

  17. Pete 17

    That is completely the wrong way to go. Given that caucus seemed so surprised by the vote at conference, it’s clear that they are out of touch with the mood of the wider party. Perhaps a forum for party members would be the way to go. Lock it off from public view and give members their own login when they apply or re-up their party membership. But sure as anything, it would be folly to attempt to cow people who are politically motivated enough to join a party in the first place from exercising their freedom of speech.

    • burt 17.1

      Pete

      The problem that would occur in such a walled garden of party members only is that it would become quite inbreed and would serve little function in terms of robust debate. Any potential for flying a kite and seeing how it lifts would be lost also. However idea in terms of creating jerk circles for ‘yes here here’ debates about how perfect party policy is and how it will work so well.

      But sure, good for dissemination of party political broadcasts.

      The debate that occurs in the blogsphere has completely changed the political landscape, it has been doing so for years. Any jumped up ‘senior MP’ who hankers for the good old days of releasing carefully crafted press releases as the ‘last word’ on something has had their day….. Hopefully IrishBill will name this muppet so we get to know who the has been is.

      • weka 17.1.1

        The Green Party did, and I assume still does, run email lists for its members to discuss things on. It can be done in a good way.
         
        Pete, a membership-only forum might be useful but it isn’t going to stop criticism of the Labour Party on blogs by Labour members. The problem is within the party, not within the blogosphere. Ever wonder why the Green Party members aren’t airing their dirty laundry in public?

        • burt 17.1.1.1

          weka

          I don’t dispute blogs create sound members only forums. There is no dispute from me about this. My point was more that robust debate requires opposition to not just the party ideas but the party principles – the party is never “always right” on any level.

          My opinion is that political blogs where folk speak freely is healthy for a party – but I’m not surprised it’s repugnant to the old school mentality of controlled press releases with no public debate.

        • Saarbo 17.1.1.2

          “Ever wonder why the Green Party members aren’t airing their dirty laundry in public?”

          Because they have good strong leadership with integrity. The Leadership in the Labour Party hasnt got those qualities so leaves a VOID which is being filled up by…well…everybody!

          For a start, good leadership in the Labour Party would have dealt with the massive faction that has been generated in the Labour Party over the demotion of David Cunliffe (and his Team), instead it has chosen to ignore it….well, this is what you f#$%en well get.

          Good Leadership would have dealt with this in the initial decision.

    • lprent 17.2

      I have always thought that should happen. It’d leak like a sieve of course. But so do the LEC’s and members meetings.

      Of even more use and a lot easier to set up would be a campaign organizers forum for cross country campaigning. Don’t bother with the PR campaign. Just the old boring sharing of ideas on electorate level campaigning.

    • Neoleftie 17.3

      So a elite forum for a small elite cadre….from one black kettle to , IMHO open connective ness campaign for three years, clinics , walk umongst the people and hear their voices not walled off in a circular room looking at yourselves in a mirror reflecting across the room.
      Bang the drums, raise the flag, sing the song and raise the cry, united we stand and stand we must or too late for the people.

    • QoT 17.4

      re-up their party membership

      I’ve been re-watching The Wire recently, hence this phrasing is fucking hilarious to me.

  18. BillODrees 18

    ” telling people that joining the party means shutting the f*ck up on the internet isn’t really a winner.”

  19. Alethios 19

    They’re complete morons. It makes me sick.

  20. KhandallaMan 20

    Only a PR professional from Dunedin South with a degree in anthropology would try to censor the Internet. 

    FYI,  Clare Curran is screwing up the once great Labour seat that was Dunedin South.

    In 2011 Labour got 35% of the party vote, whereas we got 47% in 2008 and 57% in 2005.
    In 2011 Clare got 49% agains 52% in 2005. Good old Benson-Pope got 57% in 2005.

    She is performing very poorly. A Terrible Shocker, indeed.  It is time for the Labour members in Dunedin South to question this crazy Luddite. She should be hauled up on front of the NZ Council and put on probation.   

    • Arkonaut 20.1

      If it is Clare behind this then I would put money on her calling her amendment the “Promoting Internet Freedom and Engagement” rule.

    • burt 20.2

      The bigger picture is perhaps that people don’t like militant old school lefties who think they have all the answers.

    • Jane 20.3

      It can’t be Claire, surely she would know better than to suggest something like this, maybe someone like Annette King trying to find a way to shutdown this annoying interweb thingy.

    • Neoleftie 20.4

      I crunched the numbers after the election and pointed this out to Clare in response to an article from Bryce Edwards on the blueing of Dunedin south. Her response was “I won didnt I” my point that the party vote contribution from labour south was dismal and is decreasing even allowing for the swing.
      Dunedin south had a split and Helen Clark had to intervene as peace maker as the rebel branch controlled all the assets and cash.
      My whole stance for last ten years has been that labour must reorganise, reengergise, reconnect and provide a bold direction and policy plan focused on the economy at macro level from the local and central level party.
      Irony that Clare actively promotes OPEN government and the red alert interactive blog.
      Power to the people…even if we had to resort to having our voice heard only on our own blog.

      • QoT 20.4.1

        So on top of everything else, according to your anecdote Curran also doesn’t understand how MMP works. Wish I was surprised.

    • Ant 20.5

      LOL, as soon as I read this post I thought of Clare Curran straight away.

  21. mikey77 21

    So what they are saying is “let’s be like the Standard and ban anyone who has a different opinion to us?”

    [lprent: We ban for particular behaviours. Just avoid the types of behaviour in our policy especially the self-martyrdom offenses and you shouldn't have an issue. Of course the most common reason for getting permanent bans from here is to persistently express an opinion on how we should run our site. But I figure that people can best express their back seat driving skills from the back seat - kiwiblog for instance. ]

    • IrishBill 21.1

      But if we ban people who don’t agree with us and you clearly don’t agree with us you must be banned which means you couldn’t make that comment which means I can’t be replying to it which means… OMG is this a blogosphere/space-time singularity?!

  22. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 22

    But controlling everyone in everything they do to benefit the greater good is at the very heart of being left wing. That’s all they’re doing.

    • IrishBill 22.1

      You’re confusing the libertarian/authoritarian axis with the left/right axis.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 22.1.1

        And where do you sit on that axis, IB?

        • IrishBill 22.1.1.1

          Left. Clearly.

          • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 22.1.1.1.1

            I meant the libertarian/authoritarian axis.

            • IrishBill 22.1.1.1.1.1

              Funny thing is, over the years I’ve been involved in the Standard I’ve shifted more and more to the libertarian end of the spectrum.

              • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                …but from where you started, that’s quite a journey.

              • Ron

                Oh you’ve joined the ACT party then?

                • karol

                  Ron, you clearly need some political education.  The libertarian right have laid claim to “libertarian” in recent times.  But the libertarian left-libertarian socialism has been around for a long time.

                  • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                    Except, if I recall correctly, IB has claimed as something of a virtue his status as a member of the authoritarian left.

                    ‘Cause he knows best.

                  • Ron

                    I am aware of the self proclaimed libertarian left and the L-Right for that matter, To be honest I would prefer they call themselves Libetarian Selfish. It seem to describe them more accurately.
                    but hey whatever floats your boat./

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      ‘Glibertarians’

                    • karol

                      libertarian socialists, aim for organisation in a network of small groups, nut without control from above by a state authority.  It involves community co-operation – far from “selfish”.  It’s not individualistic like the libertarianz right.

              • Lefty

                I’ve always thought that the only type of left worth being meant being on the libertarian end of the libertarian/authoritarian axis.

                Its one of the lessons of failed socialist experiments in the likes of the old USSR.

                Being libertarian doesn’t mean being sloppy, disorganised, unfocussed or undisciplined as a party.

                It just means accepting some of your supporters will be a bit like that from your point of view, respecting their right to be that way, and trying to find positive ways of working with them so they became a source of strength rather than weakness.

                This often leads to the joy of discovering somebody you thought was a dickhead sometimes actually knows better than you do yourself.

                When you give people the space to raise a dissenting voice and present a case for doing or seeing something differently it is surprising with what they can come up with.

                Doing this means sacrificing a bit of ego of course.

                But it opens up the opportunity to learn and to grow, it encourages better quality thinking and ultimately it is the only way anything can change.

                Authoritarianism can keep organisations focussed and on track for a while but ultimately leads to dumb organisations that need to become ever more authoritarian in order to cover up exactly how dumb they have become. Such organisations need leaders who aren’t too smart and surrond themselves with syncophants.

    • Tracey 22.2

      as opposed to the right agenda which is to pretend to not be trying to control everyone for the benefit of less than 10%.

  23. Peter 23

    Does National have an equivalent to the “Standard”?

    • Tracey 23.1

      They call them their “pollsters”

    • lprent 23.2

      Kiwiblog is probably the closest. Somewhat more sycophantic probably due to DPF deriving a lot of income from polling for the Nats. Whaleoil is less reverential, but I believe that he takes money from PR firms instead.

      Personally I tend to rate No Minister as being a better mix, if only because they are multi-author with a range of opinions.

      • Peter 23.2.1

        Thanks. I’ve just had a quick look at the comments on Kiwiblog and they don’t appear to allow so called bad language.

        I make this point because I suspect that the style of comment on The Standard may well put off many people who might otherwise support Labour. Like it or not The Standard is seen as Labour so maybe members of the Labour Party heirachy have good reasons to be concerned. In the end perceptions are reality, and votes caste in 2014 will be based on perceptions as always.

        National owe a lot of its electoral success to a slick PR machine that is in the business of managing perceptions, I just hope that the flavour of The Standard is not hindering the cause it so strongly supports.

        • bad12 23.2.1.1

          National owes ALL of it’s electoral success to ‘tax cut bribery’ and the promise to sell to those so enriched by the former the most profitable assets of the state,

          Just thought a small correction to your comment was in order…

        • felix 23.2.1.2

          “Thanks. I’ve just had a quick look at the comments on Kiwiblog and they don’t appear to allow so called bad language.”

          Then you didn’t look very hard.

          You also obviously weren’t scanning for overt racism, open support of n@zism and white supremacy, misogyny and homophobia, religious extremism, or threats of violence against political opponents.

          Seriously dude, holding up the comments section of Kiwiblog as an example to follow?

          For realz?

          • Pascal's bookie 23.2.1.2.1

            Be fair. Someone once pointed out to him that a commenter was saying that Brievik style action was inevitable, and he steped right up and gave them some ‘demerit points’.

            he has no problem whatsoever with people saying that ‘mulitculturalism’ (wink wink) is an existential threat to our way of life, but if someone suggests that we do anything about it, he’ll be writing them out some demerit points and recording them on a spreadsheet don’t you worry. If someone points it out him that is. He’s a busy guy.

        • fisiani 23.2.1.3

          Red Alert is a blog run by and for some Caucus members of the Labour Party. (The old guard)
          The Standard postings clearly have the impression of being far more radical.
          The old guard do not want policies as oft advocated on the Standard by some posters as they fear these will frighten the voters.
          The posters however genuinely believe that the voters will welcome and support the new (actually recycled) policies.
          When the caucus feels threatened by a blog – they will respond as they deem fit.
          In other words they perceive that the Standard has morphed from being a blog that generally supports the Labour Party to a blog that generally supports a revolutionary Labour Party.
          A fomenter of mischief.
          This tension will only abate if the caucus and this blog align more. Pigs may be airborne sooner!!!

  24. Tracey 24

    National avoids all of this and any suggestion of being undemocratic by not having blogs and being, well, undemocratic, while say they are for democracy and freedom./ It’s quite clever the way they deceive right out in the open like that.

  25. Saarbo 25

    Yes, this is an extension on the criticism of blogs by Shearer, Little and Cosgrove. The (older/dumber/backward) MP’s are annoyed at the transparency and openness of opinion that blogs create. The older Journo’s have the same issue. 

    MP’s have traditionally been able to use their powerful positions to bully members, the Blogs have clearly given members an avenue to disagree with the direction that their MP’s are moving, so the MP’s are looking for ways to stem this.

    I am sure that we will never hear anymore about this initiative. More progressive members in the council would have told this particular MP to zip it. But the worry is that Labour has such a dinosaurs like this in its ranks, if Labour is ever to succeed with a good strong 3 term stint in power it needs to clean out lightweights like this, people who are so out of touch with the direction of media and how many of us are getting our information these days.

    As a member I still feel embarrassed rather than proud of my representative MP’s…what a hopeless and self serving bunch. Unbelievingly their values seem so out of touch with the traditional values of Labour.

    • Neoleftie 25.1

      Power elite within labour are running scared that members both have power now, change is being forced upon them, and that via blogs etc we have a voice, are connected and are in some way, influencing event within labour and the MSM.

      Take the cunliffe saga for example. Most commenters on TS promote cunliffe as a real leader, a man of change and having a direction and plan that we the members support and this thread was picked p by the MSM which ran with the vague notion that power to the membership was smoke and mirrors for a coup from within or actually from the outer rim of labour as its us the member driving and demanding change not the scared and power hungry elites.

      Word of caution – words have power, a smokey mirror amplifies words, now we just need the deeds to reflect the words.

  26. bad12 26

    Damn, does this mean my chances of becoming a Labour Party member have been seriously diminished, the thought of that simply makes me want to giggle,

    What the latest sounds like is someone in the Labour caucus trying to score a few brownie points with the Leader, Bwana Dave,

    It’s a follow on from Bwana Dave’s wee moan about those who comment on The Standard, according to the word of the Bwana we should instead of openly commenting on-line, contact Bwana Dave personally with our concerns,

    Simply turns the giggles into laughter….

  27. higherstandard 27

    Dickheads

  28. My mum and dad, uncle’s and aunty’s, would be turning in their graves if they knew
    what the labour party has become, a party of dictatorship,a party where members are
    ignored, a party of division,a party of political self interest by mp’s/caucus, most mp’s are
    elected by the people who make comments on the ‘interweby’ thing,i say that with tongue
    in cheek,because obviously, those mp’s and leadership team dont really understand that
    computers are not automatic open ended comment makers, there is ‘real’ people behind
    the words that appear on blogs,message boards,twitter,etc,once mp’s etc understand
    that,then they may accept that there is a high interest in how their favoured political
    party is run and how it works for the people, who vote for it, also an interest for the people
    who they vote for in electoral seats around the country, the thing is that it’s those interweby
    people’s opinions that mp’s/caucus should be taking notice of and act in a manner that is
    inclusive instead of dismissing and requesting some sort of sensorship.
    The labour party,mp’s/caucus should get with the programme, this is 2012 , wise up.

    • Ron 28.1

      It’s not likely to change until we get new dynamic people elected as MP’s which in the MMP era means that we need to have better people high up on the party list.
      The question is how do we get good people on the list. Maybe the party needs to get rid of the deadwood in parliament and when in opposition is the only time to do this. Maybe we could hire Michelle Boag to come in and do a clean out. She certainly re-invigortaed National. But its not only the parlimentary wing that needs cleaning out we also need to look at the party itself. Part of the reason our Leader says he doesnt read blogs is becuase the whole technology thing is beyond him. We need a leader that understands the modern social media and knows how to use it.
      So better people in the party and way better people on the party list.

  29. ak 29

    Dear oh dear. The expression “trying to herd agitated cats” comes to mind, this time with the addendum “…by a sclerotic collie”.

    Hope your Word is wrong Bill (on the other hand, wee burt and hiyastan agreeing….mmmmm….)

    Dopiest bit is, the Stan’s influence is growing all the time: and the dreaded “infighting curse” is showing signs of losing effect, NB the last two polls. While the msm Tory scribes and the Farrarskis leapt on the Shearer/Cunners raruraru and whipped it up with glee, the result has been a shocker for them. Lab/grrr ahead leading into the hols.

    Looks like any publicity is good publicity for Labradour at the mo’; I take it all back Standardistas, redouble your efforts and put the hot poker up the old mutt. It needs it: http://www.stuff.co.nz/taranaki-daily-news/news/8047797/Cold-Creek-water-bill-at-final-hurdle

  30. One Tāne Huna 30

    I can understand the sentiment behind this brain-fart. Trevor Mallard’s Facebook springs to mind.

    My eyes glaze over and I imagine the pitiful Mallard dragged to the guillotine in the public square, but no, I must resist this tempting prospect.

    It would be a breach of his human rights.

  31. prism 31

    Wasn’t Putin trying to limit dissent in Russia, the Chinese, USA setting up (supposedly) spoilers who would distract threads on blogs? Why shouldn’t Labour join the anti democratic, dumb-down-the -proles classic reaction to criticism and uncomfortable new ideas? They don’t show any signs of being able to grow a flourishing sport on this tired old tree.

  32. Craig Glen Eden 32

    “Just How Wrong Can You Get It?”

    Well Shearer is the leader of the Labour Party he has no experience of the Party, Parliament, Public speaking, media presentations or management,he bumbles mumbles and he and his Caucus supporters have demoted and silenced Labours best performer.

    So I would call it “Shearer Wrong” thats how wrong!

  33. SPC 33

    This is about how the Labour Party caucus still includes people of the 1980′s era.

    They took action in the 1980′s that did not have party membership support and the party broke up – New Labour/Alliance.

    Now Labour members have a part in electing Labour leaders – but not the one supported by the majority of the current caucus. And also a role in formulating policy.

    How a future Labour caucus led government adapts to this will be interesting – that some in it want a strong central command over members is unsurprising – this gives the leader and his majority caucus faction the chance to use party discipline to bend the party to its will (silence those who might say that the Labour led government is not following party policy).

    It reflects that some (1980′s era) MP’s feel subjugated by the greater party democracy (like a tyrant by the growing power of a parliament in the old era) then they want the same discipline on the party member as themselves. A sort of revenge. Some in caucus already leak stuff to the media against their own caucus rules – but possibly with their leaders knowledge and consent. I suppose they are asking party members to be bound in the same way – not to leak stuff openly under their own name, but to do so indirectly via third parties. To have to act as they do.

  34. Professor Longhair 34

    “…a senior Labour MP (who will go unnamed) has been lobbying National Council…”

    Why exactly is he or she going unnamed?

  35. SHG 35

    Is Clare Curran going to impose a ban on saying “LOL” on the Internet?

  36. chris73 36

    Seriously though, how cool is the internet? Look at the power its given to the plebs (sorry population)

  37. lurgee 37

    Note the first words of the article – ‘Word is’ that a nameless someone has said something pretty vague and unspecified to persons unknown.

    This is rumour-mongering.

    Dismiss it.

    • the pigman 37.1

      Sure is, but at least we can see from the trackbacks that its giving the right wing blogosphere plenty of oxygen (that is sarcasm, before anyone sticks me, guts me and skewers me on a spit roast).

      Of course it would be rubbish for the LP to try and censor its members online. It’s terribly unnecessary and counterproductive because those who are actually members (and are not just serial politics junkies) would probably think twice about the kind of information they put out there about the Party.

    • IrishBill 37.2

      Nope. That was a turn of phrase that perhaps made it sound more like gossip than fact but it is fact.

      I can also assure you that I don’t air the party’s laundry like this without good reason. 

  38. “I’ll just stick to pointing out the fact that the Labour Party membership is the lowest it has been in the history of the party and that to try to introduce such a proscriptive and draconian policy would only encourage that number to sink even lower.”
    Or just push more of the left over to the Green Party (even Labour party members might vote Green with the party vote and Labour for their local electorate), mainly due to the fears over Labour being weak towards National come 2014. Either way will still be voting Green, as their environment and education policy is more promising that Labours at the moment.

    • Rhinoviper 38.1

      Considering that my electorate MP is Grant Fucking Robertson, I’ll vote for the Green candidate with my electorate vote even if they stand a stale Christmas pudding, the embalmed corpse of Leonid Brezhnev, the second law of thermodynamics or a greyish shade of brown. They’re all less dreary and toxic and show less bad faith.

      • Chris 38.1.1

        I’ll certainly be voting Mana or Green or in some other strategic way to keep Labour’s vote low. It’s worth the risk to hope a Left coalition can still be formed but with the minimum of power needed for that coalition going to Labour. A powerful Labour coalition partner would be in many ways worse than a National government. At least another term of National may create just the tiniest flicker of hope that it just may be possible for the Left to begin thinking that maybe, just maybe, they need to start talking about whether it could be time, perhaps soon, for them to look at the viability of whether or not they should get their fucking act together.

        • Tim 38.1.1.1

          As a life-long Labour supporter……..me too. No way can I support a party of betrayers, insipid little whip-masters with over-inflated egos, and a number of others who’ve come to hold some sort of sense of entitlement. There’s an entire extended family and group of friends that comes with the same committment.
          Shearer is no Clarke, and even IF Clarke were still around, she’d have to have ditched the 3rd Way/4th Reich bullshit. And for all those that harp on about how we should get in behind and effect change from within – how long do you propose that should take? How long before those that have hijacked a party’s principles and who live out-of-touch and with a sense of entitlement come to realise?  Too long so far I reckon – especially when there are alternatives.
          I gave them till the end of year to get real and wake up – hasn’t happened and it isn’t going to.
          The thing I object to most I spose is that the Labour Party has no moral right to the label.
          They’re obviously going to have to learn the hard way.

  39. Rhinoviper 39

    All of this makes me think of an oldie but a goodie:

    “Your majesty, the peasants are revolting!”

    “Yes, I know.”

    Except that there’s a real element of panic obvious.

  40. Tanz 40

    I’m thinking of going with another party. If one cannot participate as a party member on social media websites, then what is the point? The members are the backbone, are they not, or should be. Sometimes wanted, sometimes not?

  41. lenore 41

    I know a few people including myself that think – should join the labour party and up the support. But then I think of all the times I have been involved in environmental, political, feminist groups over the last 30 years and think oh god – there will be the GDA’s (grim dour activists with no sense of humour) present, there will be boring meetings where it is run in a way that the GDAs put you off saying anything because :they “know everything” and there will be also very little fun in it because how can we possibly have fun when the issues are so serious

    If the labour party wants more support, there has to be change in the approach and people who have been involved for ages need to look at themselves and think ” how inclusive am I” .

    I know not everyone is like that, but it only takes a couple of GDAs who are, to put people off and it puts me off.

    Also I try and read Red Alert but find it really patronising and they are trying to be so “clever” with their words that I think WTF are they talking about and why would I want to go to meetings when it is all pontification blah blah blah.

    At least here I can read the stuff, understand it and there are always further posts to clarify what I don’t get or links.

    • Tanz 41.1

      Yeah, Red Alert is quite patronising, agree with that. I notice some MPs never post on it, yet others often do.

    • Just viping 41.2

      Damn, forgot to press ‘reply’ earlier.
      Anyway, testing this to see if it works:

      http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-08122012/comment-page-1/#comment-560097

      • lenore 41.2.1

        Yes that pretty much sums up some of my experiences. In regard to your:

        “… don’t see activism as a social outlet, or expect “fun”, and I think I understand that the left is diversity by definition, and solidarity in diversity is much harder work than I imagine a National Party fundraising dinner would be. Fighting oppression will never be a smooth ride, and so in that respect I do understand and share your trepidation at rejoining the fray”

        This reminds me of a parent who withdrew their child from a teacher friend of mine’s class because they were having too much fun – and how can you learn when you are having fun?

        Imagine having fun and being an activist at the same time – they are around – musicians, clowns, artists, etc

        I think you mis interpret my meaning of fun and humour – and just had such a good laugh at the thought of me attending national dinner parties and will have a great time telling my friends so thanks for that. I also think that while being involved in groups is not solely as a social outlet, I have made plenty of life long friends who share the same values and connect, so I think for some people it is their “social outlet” and why not?

        Anyway I actually do quite a lot of work and still have elements of fun and humour while I am doing it, even when the work is serious.There are alot of community initiatives out there where people are gathering together with music, kai etc and having some fun while also workshoping ideas that are important to them. No endless boring speakers, no people coming to the meeting saying these are our ideas and then feeling threatened if you have other ideas.

        I think we do need to have some creative ideas around how to get people involved and I am sure there are plenty out there and plenty of people who have great ideas, they are just not going to go along to “meetings” and share them. Sure still have meetings for those who love them but lets get some other ideas, that’s all.

        • Just viping 41.2.1.1

          …. I have made plenty of life long friends who share the same values and connect, so I think for some people it is their “social outlet” and why not?

          Quite true. I do hope it will be different this time, I’d really like to enjoy myself, I shouldn’t be pessimistically preparing for the worst. It would be great if the established groups did some soul-searching about being inclusive, and open and welcoming.

          Imagine having fun and being an activist at the same time – they are around – musicians, clowns, artists, etc

          I remember all that, and the helium balloons, when the Green Party used to visit the university, and feeling jealous that our lot was so boring by comparison. But frankly, we couldn’t have pulled off a carnival atmosphere if we’d tried.

  42. Just viping 42

    Hi, I’m going to reply to this in ‘open mike’ because I can’t really see the relevance of your comment to this thread.
    (I wish I could put a link to ‘open mike’ to make things smoother but I haven’t figured out how to do that yet).

    • weka 42.1

      If you click on the date/time link of any post (I like to open it as a new tab or window) then then you can cut and paste teh URL of whatever you have opened.

  43. Neoleftie friend in arms of CV 43

    Perhaps in solidaratory we all keep the CV thing going as a minor part of your nic….and hide within our ranks the real CV and if one falls bleeding from the knives then as ROB states rise the army of CVers. Beware the circling radish wolves….red on the outside but white streaked with blue on the inside.

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    I received this email today, from Greenpeace; . Hi Frank, We’ve called for Simon Bridges to be sacked over his incompetent mishandling of the Energy and Resources portfolio. The final straw was him opening the Victoria Forest Park up for...
    Frankly Speaking | 17-04
  • Letter to the Editor: John Key and State-sanctioned murder
    . . FROM: "f.macskasy" SUBJECT: Letters to the editor DATE: Thu, 17 Apr 2014 13:56:14 +1200 TO: "Dominion Post" <letters@dompost.co.nz>  . The Editor DOMINION POST . A New Zealand citizen is killed - murdered, to be more precise - by...
    Frankly Speaking | 17-04
  • Letter to the Editor: John Key and State-sanctioned murder
    . . FROM: "f.macskasy" SUBJECT: Letters to the editor DATE: Thu, 17 Apr 2014 13:56:14 +1200 TO: "Dominion Post" <letters@dompost.co.nz>  . The Editor DOMINION POST . A New Zealand citizen is killed - murdered, to be more precise - by...
    Frankly Speaking | 17-04
  • Judith Collins explains
    Judith Collins explains what really happened at that dinner, and why it's no big deal....
    Imperator Fish | 17-04
  • Citibanker: the age of renewables is here
    Kathryn Ryan’s interview earlier this week with Michael Eckhart, Managing Director and Global Head of Environmental Finance and Sustainability at the giant investment bank Citigroup was arresting. He was in New Zealand as a keynote speaker at the Wind Energy...
    Hot Topic | 17-04
  • Media Links: Kiwi killed in drone strike.
    I did interviews on TV 3 and Radio NZ about the drone strike that killed a Kiwi dual citizen in Yemen last year. There are many questions raised by the incident, but time constraints precluded addressing all of them. The...
    Kiwipolitico | 17-04
  • Photo of the Day: Lorne St
    A quick shot of Lorne St in front of the library. It appears Brobdingnagian gardeners have dropped by with some seriously big pot plants. I love them! About the only criticism I every heard about the shared space in Lorne...
    Transport Blog | 17-04
  • National: American lickspittles
    Yesterday we learned that America had murdered a New Zealand citizen in a drone strike in Yemen. Today, the government was closely quizzed about its views on this in Parliament. Steven Joyce (standing in for the PM) was very clear:...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • A $130 million gift to the rich
    When the government announced that it was selling off Genesis Energy, it deliberately underpriced it, with a discounted price, generous bonus scheme, and huge dividend. And today that has had the expected result, with Genesis shares leaping almost 20% on...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Defamation via Facebook and ‘a private website’
    This defamation case should be a shot across the bows of various internet wide-boys who think ‘defence of truth’ or ‘opinion honestly held’ is some kind of magic elixir or Get Out of Jail Free card. It’s worth noting the...
    The Paepae | 17-04
  • Water water everywhere, but not a drop to drink
    It is three years and one day since Danyl wrote this blog post about South Canterbury Finance. I was re-reading it today, and something stuck out like a sore thumb: December 2008: SCF undertakes a high risk loan strategy, losing...
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 17-04
  • Access: I Can’t See You, But You Should See Me
    Being lost for words when you’re a talkback host could hardly be considered ideal. But back in September of 1992, I was hosting an evening talkback show on a fledgling radio station in what was then a newly deregulated, highly...
    Public Address | 17-04
  • Judith Collins: guess who’s coming to dinner?
    Judith Collins, Justice Minister, is playing dumb in parliament at question time and avoiding media. Her patronising responses, or non-responses, to allegations of corrupt influence is not becoming of a Cabinet Minister.  Her abuse of the House by criticising questions...
    Tumeke | 17-04
  • Can fracking save the climate?
    Blogging is a great way MPs can communicate and engage with citizens about the issues facing us. I have joined The Daily Blog blogging team and have so far posted on Anadarko’s failure to find oil and a piece outlining...
    frogblog | 17-04
  • New Fisk
    A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A forgotten naval victory in which even Nature played a part...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Labour’s manufacturing plan
    David Cunliffe has launched Labour's policy to get more manufacturing jobs back in New Zealand: Labour leader David Cunliffe launched the policy to an Auckland business audience this morning, adding the depreciation and procurement policies to the known suite of...
    Polity | 17-04
  • Easter PT shutdown
    It’s Easter weekend and that invariably means the rail network is shut down for works. Auckland Transport advises the rail network will be closed for Easter and there are changes to timetables for buses and ferries during the holiday break....
    Transport Blog | 17-04
  • Another perspective on the postgraduate allowance cuts
    I have already shared two stories from psychology students about how the postgraduate allowance cuts have affected them. These stories demonstrate the widespread impact the changes are having. Here is yet another story I have received, this one giving the...
    frogblog | 17-04
  • Against secret "justice" in NZ
    Last year, in response to a series of court cases challenging its control orders or claiming compensation for human rights abuses by its intelligence services, the UK passed the Justice and Security Act 2013. The Act introduces a "Closed Material...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Massey chancellor sets up company in opposition to university
    Massey Chancellor Chris Kelly will chair the board of a company that intends to be New Zealand’s largest private training provider (PTE)...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Gibbs, Hayek, Canterbury and the free market for degrees
    The New Zealand Herald notes that philanthropist Alan Gibbs is about to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Canterbury today. One of the many institutions Alan Gibbs has donated his money to...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Record Store Day
    As readers will know, I have long embraced the internet music revolution. The ability to discover and download new things pretty much as they're being made has reinvented and refreshed my lifelong relationship with popular music. But I still really...
    Public Address | 16-04
  • Great Sorkin Parody
    Aaron Sorkin (SportsNight, The West Wing, The Newsroom) makes a very particular style of TV. Some good parts to that, some really silly parts. Amy Schumer' Comedy Central parody of Sorkin is pitch-prefect and hilarious. Enjoy: Inside Amy SchumerGet More:...
    Polity | 16-04
  • Photographic proof
    Deborah asked for a picture of my bicycle, after I wrote about it, and there is now one in existence which even includes me riding it along Mt Albert Rd, thanks to a dear friend who drove past me and...
    The Hand Mirror | 16-04
  • Our future lies in science
    This is not a column on global warming, climate change or whether humans are or aren’t having an impact....
    Pundit | 16-04
  • MP to attend progressive politics conference
    Labour MP Grant Robertson will attend the Progressive Governance conference in Amsterdam later this week. “This conference brings together Social Democratic parties from around the world to discuss how progressive politics should work in the post global financial crisis environment....
    Labour | 20-04
  • Storm fans fire service commitment
    Further damage from the huge storm that battered the West Coast was prevented by the great work of our volunteer Fire Service and locals will be extremely grateful, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “Our region has been...
    Labour | 19-04
  • Time for Ryall to fix mistakes and help families
    Families who won a long and lengthy Court battle for financial help to support their disabled daughters and sons are now facing a new battle with health system bureaucracy and need the Health Minister's help, Labour's Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Time for greater ministerial accountability
    The Green Party has today released a proposal to introduce a ministerial disclosure regime in New Zealand to improve the transparency and accountability of government.The proposal, based on the system used in the United Kingdom since 2010, would require all...
    Greens | 18-04
  • Power prices soar on the eve of winter
    On the eve of winter as New Zealanders are turning on their heaters, power prices have soared sky high, Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer says. “Energy Minster Simon Bridges claimed in Parliament that prices were estimated to rise 2.4 per...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Workers can kiss goodbye to Easter Sunday off
    The Government’s decision to “reprioritise” scarce labour inspector resources by abandoning the enforcement of Easter Sunday Shop Trading laws means workers can kiss goodbye to a guaranteed day off, says Labour’s Associate Labour Issues spokesperson Darien Fenton. “The Labour Minister...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Businesses need to respect workers this Easter
    Businesses intent on flouting Easter shopping laws should face stiff penalties, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today. This Easter, at least one major garden centre chain intends to open on Good Friday despite this being in breach...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney's Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members' ballot. “It’s time the Government acted in the interests of families,” Sue Moroney says. “National has tried every...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the price for Genesis far too low in a desperate attempt to beef up demand....
    Labour | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Associate Immigration spokesperson. “In the past 12 months, temporary...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Since 2009 resignation rates among sworn staff have...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand to revisit its decision to evict an essential community organisation in Christchurch with only eight weeks notice.Yesterday at the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence support services the organisation...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Auckland Council has implemented a by-law banning the use of psychoactive...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination after revelations that three out of seven properties sold in Wanganui tested positive for methamphetamine,...
    Labour | 17-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Before his departure, John Key said he would wait until all...
    Labour | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today.The report tabled in Parliament yesterday shows that total use of ozone depleting gases in New Zealand has...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.  ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Collins must admit misleading Parliament
    ACC Minister Judith Collins must front up and admit she has misled Parliament over ACC’s policy to stop paying compensation to clients who refused to fill in its privacy form, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Judith Collins claimed Labour...
    Labour | 16-04
  • English confirms he has no plan to raise wages
    Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed he has absolutely no plans to lift wages, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues, Andrew Little says. “Bill English told the Chamber of Commerce yesterday that workers could expect a rise in average income of...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Govt careless and callous about threatened birds
    The National Government is increasing the threat to two of the world's most threatened and unique birds by opening up Victoria Forest Park to petroleum drilling, the Green Party said today.Scientists have recently published a ranking of the 100 most...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Genesis: The biggest fire sale of them all
    National has finished its asset sales with a massive bonfire of a fire sale, showing once and for all how much of a disaster this programme was, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Just 68,000 Kiwis bought shares in Genesis,...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Interest rates rise but only smokes increasing
    Mortgage rate rises are making life harder for homeowners, and many of them will be surprised the latest CPI figures show inflation would be zero were it not for tobacco tax hikes, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “New Zealanders...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Term One Report Card for Hekia Parata
    Assignment Teacher’s Comments Grade      ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students but said nothing about it, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Exams are stressful enough...
    Labour | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    The ACC Minister needs to front up and explain what, if any, changes she has made to the broken culture of ACC rather than denying that she has any part to play in the dysfunction of her Ministry, the Green...
    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being adopted nationwide, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It is a massive victory for those in the...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Darien Fenton says. Due to speak to a cycling rally at...
    Labour | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour Leader Speech to the Institute of Directors 15 April 2014, Auckland It's a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of Directors has a proud history of developing New Zealand's...
    Labour | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy relationship between the National Party and this company, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Workers faced with redundancy at Canterbury Yarns need a redundancy support co-ordinator, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Last week, Canterbury Yarns was placed in receivership. Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have...
    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Why Easter holidays should always be mandatory and retail free
    The moaning from retailers that they can’t open the cash registers and worship the consumer culture of consumption over Easter bores me immensely because I’ve always believed that public holidays should be mandatory. It’s not that I really care about...
    The Daily Blog | 19-04
  • Why punish the parents of the disabled?
    Parents who have adult children with disabilities saw a glimmer of hope when the promise for payment for caring for their children was given. But like most things, the complicated and relentless bureaucracy of the whole process shows a completely...
    The Daily Blog | 19-04
  • Our government: still no idea
    Happy Easter everyone, bad weather aside. A previous post of mine was called “The Government with no ideas”.  Unsurprisingly, the theme of the piece was of a current government thoroughly absent of any creative ideas or solutions to assist more...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • 12 things Forbes has to say about NZs about to burst economic bubble
    Forbes is not known for their socialist or left wing activism, so when they predict a grim economic failure, we should should collectively poo ourselves a little. National often get given this perception that somehow they are better economic mangers....
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • That Sinking Feeling: Labour’s urgent need for persuasive words and coura...
    THE LATEST ROY MORGAN POLL has Labour on 28.5 percent (down 3.5 percent) and the Greens on 11.5 percent (down 1.5 percent). At 40 percent, the combined vote of the two main centre-left parties has fallen 5 percentage points since...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Why the Labour movement should support a Universal Basic Income
    The Mana movement’s support of the idea of a universal basic income is a welcome development. It could become one of the litmus issues that define the party and prove extremely popular. If Mana are in a position to do...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Legal high and cannabis regulation
    I marched through Henderson last month with my fellow Westies to express our concern about the impact of so called “legal highs” on our community. Some people chanted loudly calling for banning, some expressing anger at the parliamentarians who voted...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Know your Tory fellow travellers and ideologues: John Bishop, Taxpayers Uni...
    . . On 19 March, I reported on the Board members of the so-called “Taxpayers Union”. With one exception, every single member of the Taxpayers Union Board was a current (or recent) card-carrying member or supporter of the National and/or...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • GUEST BLOG: Daniel Bruce – Internet Party: What Seems Ridiculous To The O...
    Imagine you’re a 18-21 year old, from a working class family. You’ve never had a landline phone at home, because your parents can’t afford the fixed monthly bills, so everyone in your familiy has a pre-pay mobile phone. Because of the same tight...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release We don’t need any more official reports. We know the problem and we have the plans....
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release New Zealanders do not want asset sales and they do not want the Government wasting millions of dollars on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground Monday, 27 Aug 2012 | Press Release Instead of betting on a boom and bust industry and selling off assets the government needs to invest in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance Sunday, 26 Aug 2012 | Press Release It is not fair that many rich New Zealanders are cheating on their tax. National’s 2010 tax cuts, that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release In its rush to sell our assets, National has found itself in a crisis of its...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Privacy across all departments needs checking
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Privacy across all departments needs checking Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release “People don’t have a choice about giving their information to the state so the Government has an absolute duty to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Restoring public trust and confidence is an essential goal and will require very major change starting from the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government must front up on full costs of asset sales
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government must front up on full costs of asset sales Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release It’s time for the Government to front up over just how much these asset sales are...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Our society has never been as unequal as it is today. New research from the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release “It would be a shock for any other Government to introduce such a self-defeatist piece of legislation but unfortunately...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney’s Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members’ ballot. “It’s...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 | Press Release Christchurch cannot afford to lose this agency The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Resignation rates among cops soar The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Work visa problems need monitoring The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today. The report...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • The issues behind the possible MANA-Internet Party Alliance
      Last weekend Kim Dotcom spoke at MANAs AGM to discuss the possibility of the Internet Party and MANA Party working together to defeat John Key this election. As someone who knows both Hone and Kim, I have a unique...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Manufacturing Upgrade   Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.   – The claims and opinions...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Get work on 29th and the ANZAC spirit deserts the TPPA
      Groser and co would have been spitting tacks last week as the ANZAC spirit deserted the TPPA negotiations. Australia has done a deal directly with Japan which undercuts the demand for Japan to opening all agriculture in the TPPA....
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • No fracking solution to climate change
    Some British tabloids and oil lobbyists have jumped on comments made by an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author that fracking could play a role in addressing climate change as an argument for it here in Aotearoa, so is fracking...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: At Last: A Manufacturing Policy Date of Release:  Thursday, April 17, 2014 Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Drone murder of New Zealander “justified” by Prime Minister
    Yesterday Prime Minister John Key justified the extrajudicial killing of a New Zealander in a US drone strike in Yemen with a few cynical, callous words at a stand-up press conference. Key said he’d been briefed by our spy agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Secret Policeman’s Ball
      Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball is back in New Zealand for one night of some of the best stand-up comedy from both national and international comics The freedom to provoke and in some cases offend is essential to the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Tariana Turia: Labour doesn’t deserve our vote
    Maori Party Co-leader Tariana Turia told TVNZ’s Q+A programme that Labour doesn’t deserve the Maori vote. ‘I don’t believe they deserve our vote any more....
    Scoop politics | 20-04
  • Family Court Consumers Group appalled at legal rort
    Family Court Consumers Group appalled at Lawyer for Child's "1 meeting in 10 years" taxpayer funded legal rort...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Manufacturing Matters to New Zealand – 17 April
    The Labour Party announcement today recognises the simple truth that the manufacturing sector really matters to New Zealand’s economy as a whole, based on the part manufacturing plays in the growth of the added value element in the tradable sector,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Young Kiwi to Represent New Zealand at Premier Youth Forum
    Young Kiwi to Represent New Zealand at Premier Youth Forum FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Commonwealth Youth New Zealand Executive Director, Aaron Hape, has been selected to represent New Zealand at 33Fifty, the Commonwealth Youth Leadership Programme,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Lisa Owen interviews Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei
    Greens propose new ministerial disclosure regime based on British rules, requiring quarterly declarations of ministers' meetings, travel and hospitality....
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Politicians Should Maintain Workers’ Easter Break
    Family First NZ is rejecting calls for any liberalisation of Easter trading laws and says that workers deserve a break to spend time with their families. “This is not an issue about choice as has been argued. For many workers,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Lisa Owen interviews experts on Antacrtica
    Lisa Owen interviews Chuck Kennicutt and Gary Wilson on Antarctica Headlines: Top Antarctic scientists warns New Zealand "not ready" for worst as ice shelves and sea ice in Antarctica retreat and the climate changes Gary Wilson: "Can...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Beyond the State – NZ State Houses from Modest to Modern
    As part of the our 'Active Hand of Government' series for 2014, we present Bill McKay, Senior Lecturer, School of Architecture and Planning, speaking to his new publication....
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress
    Global unions the ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) and IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural and Hospitality Workers) today applauded the steps forward made in preventing often shocking abuse of crews on fishing vessels in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Families before commerce at Easter
    Families before commerce at Easter The retail workers’ union has hit back at critics of New Zealand's modest Easter trading restrictions. "Some things are more important than going to the mall, and for just three and a half days each...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Easter trading laws archaic, in need of overhaul
    Press release: ACT New Zealand Easter trading laws are outdated and in need of a major overhaul, said ACT leader Jamie Whyte today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • ALCP welcomes Campbell Live poll result
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party welcomes last night's Campbell Live poll, saying it is an overdue reality check for public opinion on personal cannabis use....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Q+A This Week 20/4/14
    Q+A This Week SUNDAY 20 APRIL, 9AM ON TV ONE The latest on the US-NZ relationship from the US military’s top man in the Pacific, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear . Deputy Political Editor Michael Parkin asks him whether we’re allies,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Community detention for pokie theft
    A 67-year-old former company director, convicted of stealing pokie machine profits, was today sentenced to six months community detention, 160 hours of community work and ordered to make reparation of $6,000....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Waitangi National Trust Board Amendment Bill
    The Māori Affairs Committee is inviting public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 14 May 2014....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Collaboration stops drugs from crossing borders
    Collaboration between Hong Kong and New Zealand Customs has stopped millions of dollars worth of drugs coming into New Zealand this year, with a number of seizures and arrests in both countries....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Call for public enquiry into the future of farming
    Fish & Game NZ is calling for a public enquiry “to examine the future of agriculture in New Zealand”....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Comment on Labour Policy Announcement by NZMEA President
    “This policy release from the Labour Party is so important that if it becomes government policy it would define a shift in New Zealand’s culture,” says Brian Willoughby President of the NZMEA and Managing Director of Plinius Audio and Contex...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Manufacturing policy makes sense but….
    On the surface much of Labour's prescription for manufacturing is sound though questions remain over some of the detail not yet announced, the Employers and Manufacturers Association says....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Where Are The 15,000 Jobs?
    “Paula Bennett is today proudly telling New Zealand that beneficiary numbers have decreased by 15,000 in the past year. There is no proud declaration that 15,000 jobs have been created in the same period,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty spokesperson,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Change of approach to government procurement needed
    The rail engineering industry has been totally let down by National’s lack of manufacturing policy, and Labour’s measures outlined today represent a marked shift in approach to supporting domestic industries, the RMTU said today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Depreciation Policy Shouldn’t Be Just for Pet Industries
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Labour’s announcement to beef up rates of depreciation in the manufacturing sector, but is questioning why David Cunliffe is picking winners rather than applying the policy across all sectors. Jordan Williams,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • FIFA U-20 World Cup NZ 2015 Kick Off Times Announced
    An array of kick-off times to suit football fans of all ages has been confirmed for the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015. With 52 matches spread across the nation, the public will be able to enjoy a collection...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • “Legitimate purpose” provides no protection under 167 form
    On Radio New Zealand today, the Privacy Commissioner indicated that ACC could only request information that was "relevant" for a "legitimate purpose". His view was therefore that the ACC167 form is not a "blank cheque" or...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • State: still keeping you safe on the road this Easter
    The long-awaited Easter/ Anzac break is nearly upon us while the weather may have taken a turn for the worse in several parts of the country, many Kiwis will still be packing up their cars to take a road trip....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Govt plan for community input into residential red zone
    Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Governor-General to visit Turkey
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, is to visit Turkey next week to lead New Zealand’s representation at the annual Gallipoli commemorations....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority on the death of Adam Palmer while in Police custody found the actions of Police were justified during the arrest. The report also found that Police took all possible steps to try...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
    New boundaries for the country’s 64 General and seven Māori electorates have been finalised – with an additional electorate created in Auckland. The 2014 Representation Commission has completed its statutory role of reviewing and redrawing electorate...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
    Save the Children New Zealand welcomes a new treaty which allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
    Labour takes manufacturing seriously Manufacturing workers and employers will all benefit from economic policies announced today by the Labour Party leader, David Cunliffe. The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union has welcomed the announcement...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Manufacturing policy welcomed
    “Today’s announcement of Labour’s manufacturing policy is very welcome,” says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg. “Just as many other developed countries are realising, having a strong manufacturing sector pays off in good jobs, retaining...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Operation Unite – a Blitz on Drunken Violence
    New Zealand Police are hoping to reduce the number of victims from alcohol related crime by asking the public to say ‘Yeah, Nah’ more often this holiday weekend....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Dunne Speaks
    Dunne Speaks 17 April 2014 There have been a number of harrowing cases presented this week about the impact of psychoactive substances on vulnerable young people. At one level, the tales are deeply disturbing. It is awful to see anyone...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Research announcement welcomed
    A leading Māori researcher has welcomed the announcement of the 2014 Te Pūnaha Hihiko - Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund by Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce and Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    At Last: A Manufacturing Policy FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company,...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Republic campaigners still positive after royal visit
    "Campaigners for a New Zealand Head of State are still feeling positive after ten days of royal events" says NZ Republic Chair, Savage. "Our polling before the visit showed increased support for a kiwi head of state. We have a...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Selling homes to foreigners benefits New Zealanders
    Winston Peters has apparently convinced David Cunliffe that when foreigners buy New Zealand property they make New Zealanders worse off. Mr Cunliffe has announced his intention to adopt Winston Peters’ policy of banning foreigners from buying...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes Key’s Rejection of ‘Fat Tax’
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Prime Minister John Key’s rejection of fat and sugar taxes ahead of this year's election. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Union, says:...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Law Commission Paper on a New Crown Civil Proceedings Act
    The Law Commission has released A New Crown Civil Proceedings Act for New Zealand , its Issues Paper on reforming the Crown Proceedings Act 1950. The Issues Paper proposes a new statute to replace the Crown Proceedings Act 1950....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for NZ workers
    Maritime Union says focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for New Zealand workers...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Make the choice to stay safe on the road
    With Easter and Anzac Day giving us two successive long weekends this year there will be a lot of happy families preparing for trips....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Students Welcome Engagement with StudyLink
    The New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) has welcomed the improved performance from StudyLink in 2014. There is no doubt that getting their loans and allowances processed on time makes it easier for students to concentrate on being...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised
    Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised Imagine if you could not access vital news and information. What would you do?...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Public lose interest in this council, 2016 to be a watershed
    The second term Auckland Council is proving to be an interesting one and very different to the inaugural 2010 – 2013 Governing Body. We are currently going through a budget round to lock in where council’s $3b expenditure is directed...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour and National join forces in new Maori confiscations
    Chris McKenzie, former-treaty negotiator and Te Tai Hauauru Maori party candidate, says that the Minister of Primary Industries’ plans to remove temporary exemptions for vessel operators derived from settlement negotiations is akin to confiscation...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • The FCV Bill – Flagging 30 years of failures?
    Paying seafarers at least a minimum wage under the Minimum Wage Act 1983 has applied to the New Zealand fishing industry for more than 30 years. It was, and is, a basic protection which had two universals – it was...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014
    Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014 Kiwis across the country are getting together over a cuppa to make a difference in the lives of people living in poverty in the developing world. They’re getting involved in Oxfam’s Morning Tea, a fun and...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • 1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know How
    1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know Where to Go...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award
    Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third - The criteria for judging are by assessing the transnational (a corporation with 25% or more foreign ownership) that has the most negative impact in each or all of the following categories: economic dominance...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
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