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ManBan!

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, July 6th, 2013 - 219 comments
Categories: democratic participation, dpf, feminism, labour, making shit up, sexism - Tags:

A great joke has been played on the mainstream media: they have bought, hook, line and sinker, into W****O**-type spin.  They have been exposed as a bunch of followers, desperate to land the next hilarious 140-character-one-liner, to prove their relevance … without really understanding just how much they’ve been played.

Here’s a few of the problems with the “man ban” narrative which anyone with half a fucking clue about the functioning of political parties and society in general might have cottoned on to.

We don’t have a meritocracy even if you ignore silly identity politics

A lot of people are having a fucking whinge because oh my goooooooooooood, if you only select womeeeeeeeeeeeeen then what about the meeeeeeeeeeeeen.  It should just be on merit!  Merit alone!

Here’s the problem – and again, this is if you completely ignore things like sexism (or insist despite the mountains of evidence that they don’t exist):

When there are five candidates running in your electorate – say, four party candidates from National, Labour, the Greens and ACT, and one independent – do you honestly believe that they are objectively the five best possible candidates for your electorate?

I’m certainly no National supporter.  I have significant issues with their policies, approaches, and general existence.  Even I cannot believe, however, that Aaron bloody Gilmore was the best National Party member to run for Christchurch East, nor that he was the 56th best National Party member overall.

There are many reasons people get to stand for parties, or even as independents, in our electorates.  There are many reasons people get placed on their party’s list.  You honestly want to sit there and say that ~the people get to decide~ when there’s bureaucracy, factionalism, and a shitload of money at stake?

And that’s ignoring the obvious disparities of gender, race and class between “who’s in Parliament” and “who’s in New Zealand”.  That’s ignoring the lifestyle constraints on MPs and other elected representatives – constraints which massively favour the privileged classes.

If you think “but merit” is an argument against gender-balancing strategies, you’re saying everything is already done on merit.  Trying taking that thought through to its logical conclusion.  Then look at yourself in the mirror and say “Wow, I’m a racist, misogynist piece of shit.”

There’s a difference between “making the grade” and “being the best”

Another illusion created by this argument is the idea that “the best” candidate should always win.  But that’s not really how it has to go.

Let’s assume there’s a basic standard for party candidates – a history of party involvement, good local knowledge,  basic electability (and see “not a fucking meritocracy” above for why this is more a wishlist than a reflection of the current situation in any party.)

If you have candidate A who’s lived in the area for ten years, owns the local fish’n’chip shop, has a great name for punning on and is pretty likeable, compared with candidate B who’s lived in the area for twelve years, runs a stall at the market selling organic salami, has a surname beginning with A and is pretty likeable … is the difference between victory and defeat going to be that significant?

Is it going to crush the hopes and dreams of your party to pick basically-electable Candidate A – who happens to be a woman, or a man of colour, or a person with a disability, or a woman of colour with a disability – over basically-electable Candidate B, who’s another white dude?

Sports metaphor:  in order to try out for swim team, you must complete [swimming task A] in under 3 minutes.  Kid 1 does it in 2:58.  Kid 2 does it in 2:53.  According to the “but merit!!!” arguers, you must choose Kid 2.  Even though Kid 1 might have a better attitude, or comes from a shitty home and needs the self esteem boost.

They both passed the mark.  Nothing wrong with taking other things into account after the fact.

(Of course, this raises a far broader, more complex issue of what constitutes “merit”.  In my books, ensuring a diverse range of viewpoints is about merit, because we know that more diverse groups make better decisions.  But that’s a whole book’s worth of discussion.)

Party conferences throw up ridiculous shit all the time

This is what got me.  Apparently for a few brief wonderful moments yesterday afternoon, TV3 had a story up on their website about the Labour Party introducing a Bill to change the law around candidate selection in every electorate.

I can see where the mistake comes from: when everyone’s squawking about something, you probably assume it’s serious.

But … it’s really not.

It’s a draft policy remit from a party committee which is going to the conference to be discussed and potentially included in the party’s rules, which would allow individual electorates to voluntarily request that only women be shortlisted if the party council agrees on a case-by-case basis.

fry

… fuck me, the fucking Amazons are storming the Bastille with fucking laser-cannons.  Hide your menfolk!

It’s not even a fucking quota, people

See above.

The painful/hilarious side of this is, of course, that the UK Conservatives are looking to introduce much the same process – but without the voluntary factor.  Yep, they’re going to mandate when winnable seats have to run women candidates.  But figuring this out would require Googling, paying attention to UK politics or following Andrew Geddis on Twitter.  Clearly, far to hard when you can just badger David Shearer into making stupid statements.

~

(Image from Hark, A Vagrant. No, not the Futurama one.)

~

ETA: Mod note:  There are literally four other posts on this issue at The Standard, with hundreds of comments on them.  You want to discuss sexism?  Go here.  Gender balance across other parties?  Here.  The proposal itself?  Here.  Other reactions?  Here.  I’m not interested in rehashing every single “Labour hates men” “this makes them unelectable” “lol sex changes” comment which has already been thrashed to death.  

This post is about the misconceptions being thrown around in a media which copy-pastes from rightwing blogs.  It’s not a place to propagate them.

219 comments on “ManBan!”

  1. jaymam 1

    All parties should have some kind of independent advisor that they can run ideas with, in case those ideas are stupid. Somehow, political parties seem blind to the effect certain stupid ideas will have and which will be quoted by their enemies for years. I did offer advice to Labour when I was a member but that was ignored, so I left. Is it the “can’t see the wood for the trees” effect?

    [QoT: This is not a "party idea". Re-read the post and try again. There are already multiple posts debating the value of the proposal. If you want to comment on that you may do so there.]

    • chris73 1.1

      Thats quite a good idea

    • Te Reo Putake 1.2

      I’ll stick with democracy, ta Jayman. btw, have you spotted the contradiction between your idea for an ‘independent’ advisor and your toy chucking when your advice when you were a member was ignored? Or are you just suggesting you should be that independent adviser? They wouldn’t listen to me when I was a member, they really must listen to me when I’m not.

      Also interested to know why think discussing ways of advancing women within Labour is stupid.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 1.2.1

        The discussion isn’t stupid. The non-decision to wait for Cameron Slater to initiate the debate was though. Beyond stupid, in fact: the sort of blunder that only a complete tool would make.

        • weka 1.2.1.1

          a toolbox of complete tools in fact.

          • Bearded Git 1.2.1.1.1

            The way it should have been handled was to throw back in the journalists faces the fact that National has 16 women and 43 men in it’s caucus.”I’m sorry Mr. Gower but it is National that has the problem here not Labour.” Shearer’s response-weak, woffly; what’s new?

      • saarbo 1.2.2

        Spot on!

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 1.3

      Labour needs to put someone on Whale duty figuring out what Lusk’s lines will be and pre-empting them. Not a bad idea Jaymam. Kind of obvious though.

    • jaymam 1.4

      QoT: This is not a “party idea”
      Clearly it IS a party idea. Sue Moroney said so, and I have not seen an official Labour Party contradiction of that.

      Sue Moroney said: We all agree in the Labour Party that we want 45% [women] in the next [election]
      ttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjJZw54WRs8

  2. chris73 2

    Of course once again its everybody else who just doesn’t understand, if only the people and the media understood what Labour were doing they’d know its for their own good…

    It was handled badly and the response was poor, deal with it.

    [QoT: No, chris, you deal with reading my post. The last sentence acknowledges this was handled badly. That doesn't change the fact that it's a non-story, at least compared to how it's been portrayed by the media.]

    • BM 2.1

      Yep, everyone else is so fucking dumb and ill informed, that’s the problem

      Maybe QOT need to break out of her insular little sect and go talk and mingle with others who aren’t tofu eating anarcho lesbian feminists.

      This idea within your little group may be seen as the greatest thing since sliced bread but outside that wee cloistered environment it’s a totally different world and unfortunately for you every one thinks this idea is shit.

      [QoT: this is your only warning, and I'm only leaving it here as evidence of why the rest of your derailing, abusive, irrelevant comments will be summarily deleted.]

      • weka 2.1.1

        BM, if you don’t come across feminists in your day to day life, you might want to ask yourself why*. Because I certainly do, it’s normal in NZ for women to be feminist (even those that don’t use the term).

        *three guesses:

        One, you simply ignore women who talk feminism, or you are tone deaf to women talking about issues that are important to women.

        Two, the women around you avoid talking feminism in front of you because you are so unpleasant.

        Three, there are plenty of feminist women around you but they don’t use the word feminist because of bigots like you.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.2

      It was handled badly, which allowed the complete misrepresentation of the circumstances and substance of the proposal, so no wonder the response was poor.

      As for dealing with it, the Labour Party needs a leader first.

      • BM 2.2.1

        The only way this idea was ever going to fly is if people like Trevor Mallard, Damian O’Conner, David Shearer got in behind it and explained why it’s needed and how it’s going to improve parliament, blah, blah etc.

        If the individuals who are going to be most disadvantaged got up and supported it, people may then think, “Hmm this idea must have some merit, you wouldn’t have the guys agreeing with it if it wasn’t needed”.

        On the flip side it may also enforce the perception that the Men within Labour are a bunch of brow beaten individuals led around by the nose.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.2.1.1

          The “perception”? Looks more like an unsubstantiated smear from a partisan hack to me.

          The worst thing that can be said about them (in this context) is that they owe their positions to their gender, but the problem is far worse in National.

          Speaking of which, do you think that the fact that only sixteen out of fifty nine National MPs are women is a result of the endemic gender bullying in right-wing circles?

        • deemac 2.2.1.2

          so we have to wait for the less progressive men to support any policy about women? And that’s not at all sexist…
          The NZLP website has over 60 pages of policy stuff but our journos are too lazy to read that.
          Should the party staff be able to anticipate which tiny bit of that Whale Oil is going to seize on? If you think you can anticipate that, you should apply for a media management job immediately!

          • handle 2.2.1.2.1

            Labour needs to be ready to counter anything scumbags like Slater run with. It is not that hard to predict and be ready.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.2.1.2.1.1

              No, it isn’t. “What will the enemy do” is a basic part of any policy debate.

  3. Toby 3

    We in the Labour Party look forward to Moira Coatsworth’s and Tim Barnett’s resignation. The latter, in particular is a disgrace to the Labour Party, he has only ever used the party to further his own agendas and people. Bring back Mike Williams and Mike Smith. They had credibility and good political instinct. Coatsworh and Barnett are fruit loops.

    [QoT: this is not relevant to the post.]

    • deemac 3.1

      is that the royal “We”?

    • JK 3.2

      Who is the “we in the Labour Party”, Toby ? It is certainly not I. Tim B is doing okay while Mike Smith in his former position was a muddler of the first degree with NO political instinct.

  4. Rogue Trooper 4

    it has been informative watching the MSM tele presenters / auto-cue writers repeat the schoolyard meme (boys aren’t allowed, not even to watch).

    and Mike Williams? – “it’s sexism”. hmmm.

    Quote of the yesterday : “poor old David Shearer, now there is a man whose a victim”.
    -Judith Collins (Winston Smith / chris73 woulda’ got there jollies with that one; Yes? ).

  5. Roflcopter 5

    The problem is more fundamental than what the media are saying.

    That Labour feels the need to propose rules to increase the number of women representatives in the party shows that they have essentially failed in their ability to seek out, encourage and support more women into the world of politics, at a core level. Doing so would have seen a natural increase in the number and quality of women, and negate the need for an ambulance at the bottom of the cliff proposal.

    This is what the media are banging on about… not the fact that there’s these new proposed rules floating about, but the fact that Labour, who purport to support huge diversity/equity within the party, feel the need to actually make rules to cover the fact they suck at practicing what they preach.

    • QoT 5.1

      Clearly you’ve been reading different media to me, Roflcopter, because all I’ve seen is a swathe of “but we had a woman Prime Minister so sexism doesn’t exist” and “David Shearer can’t control his party” (because Patrick Gower doesn’t understand how political parties work) and “PC gone mad”.

      If the media wanted to “bang on about” the lack of representation of women in politics, that would be, well, probably really terrible, but at least relevant to an existing issue. And they’d have to look at National too, and it’s complete lack of action on the even greater lack of gender balance.

      You are welcome to provide citations to the contrary, of course.

      • Roflcopter 5.1.1

        I’m probably not expressing this as well as I should, so apologies QoT.

        What I’m trying to get at is that fundamental gender balance issues should not need to be addressed by Labour proposing rules that force the balance. Labour (or any party for that matter) need to step back at a deeper level to develop themselves an environment where gender balance doesn’t need to be thought about, it happens naturally. What they are currently doing is proposing stuff that says they suck at doing that, and the media is calling them out on it.

        National are just as bad, they recognise it, and just like Labour, need to step back at a deeper level to develop appropriate environments where gender balance doesn’t need to be thought about, it happens naturally. Unlike Labour, what they won’t do is propose rules to cover their shortcomings.

        The media suck in general, but in this case, where they are clearly calling Labour out on their shortcomings, you would at least hope Labour would see that and step back to look at the deeper issues that puts them where they are currently.

        • QoT 5.1.1.1

          You do have a point, Roflcopter, but the fact is that the two options which are now presented are:

          (a) do something small and tactical like introduced optional women-only lists;

          (b) destroy patriarchy.

          I am all in favour of B. But we don’t get to B without taking steps like A.

          • Roflcopter 5.1.1.1.1

            I guess that’s where I sort of differ from your thinking.

            I’m more of the thinking that A delays, or even sets back, any moves necessary to achieve B.

            I’m more than happy for the media to continue to call out anyone on stuff like A, because the more people are held to account for thinking along the lines of A, the greater the chance the people will take a good long hard look at themselves and realise that B is where their heads needed to be at in the first place. This is the only way progress will be made.

            Blaming the media is a cop-out.

            • QoT 5.1.1.1.1.1

              God, I’m over the “waaaaaah, cop-out” line. The media’s just slightly influential, you know.

              And if you think A is the reason no one makes “proper” moves towards B, I suggest you go do some homework.

              • Roflcopter

                Put it this way, if B was the norm, A wouldn’t have happened, there wouldn’t be a story, and you wouldn’t need to be writing this piece.

                A is not the way to get to B, it’s just something done to make people feel good.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  Even if that were true, “feeling good” has a positive effect on confidence and therefore ability. Not to mention electability.

                  • Akldnut

                    Why couldn’t it have be an unwritten policy/guideline over the formal written one, then this discussion wouldn’t even need to take place and Labour would be scoring big on being the most inclusive party to choose from.

                • QoT

                  And you base this on what?

                  • Akldnut

                    Wishful thinking, if it was already being done then there wouldn’t be a need to make it a written rule, this would all be moot.

        • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.2

          That’s what they’ve been doing for quite some time and it’s not working.

          Here’s the thing: IMO, putting in place these policies will help bring about that natural balance while not doing so will help prevent that natural balance due to the momentum of the present imbalance.

    • deemac 5.2

      er, no it isn’t. The media have been repeating Whale Oil’s meme and totally failing to report the facts. Pretty normal for them really.

      • Roflcopter 5.2.1

        In headline only….

        The facts are clear: Labour feel the need to make rules to cover the fact they suck at practicing what they preach. They got called out on it.

  6. Descendant Of Sssmith 6

    Nah it wasn’t handled badly it was something completely misrepresented by the right.

    Their response to it is as stupid as yelling fire in a picture theatre when there isn’t one.

    If only the media got as worked up about real removals of liberties in this country such as removing voting rights from prisoners, illegally stopping them smoking, imprisoning people for using drugs, banning begging, increased powers of searching your homes without a warrant, the various bits of legislation re Chch, the abuse of urgency, and so on.

    The media have been unintelligent and Pavlovian in their responses.

    The desire to get any story out first on the net means they can be led by the nose when you tap into the writers own prejudices towards sensationalist shit.

    Slater and his co-writers tap into that.

    Shearers response was pretty crap as well. He doesn’t do the “nothing to see here move on” anywhere near as well as Key.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 6.1

      Of course it was handled badly: the media environment is what it is, Lusk and his sock-puppet should never have been in a position to break the story.

      • Descendant Of Sssmith 6.1.1

        Nah once you buy into “the perception is reality” bullshit you are doomed to chase your tail on everything.

        Whoever started using that phrase as a management meme should be sent to Pluto.

        The “perception” of the proposal and the reaction to that “perception” is miles out of kilter with the reality.

        If the media had any credibility they’d report on the reality.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 6.1.1.1

          Who’s buying into it? Question: did the publicity vacuum (prior to yesterday) serve the interests of the Labour Party?

      • Don't worry be happy 6.1.2

        Maybe Labour have a ‘Plan Ban’ as well…seems to have kicked in about the time we had Goff foisted on us.

    • RedLogix 6.2

      Between QoT’s post and this comment more or less said everything that needed saying here.

      Everyone with half a brain cell needs to stop and think about this incident; the pig arrogant, deeply entrenched sexism it has revealed across the whole of this nation lies bare to be seen.

      It’s the same shit Clark and Gillard had to swim through, the same shit women everywhere have to fend off daily. The same shit any man who refuses to ape the staunch machismo manboy culture has to keep his mouth shut about … lest more shit get shovelled down it.

      Depressing and contemptible are the two words that describe how I feel about what has happened here. And my respect to those of you with the sheer energy and guts to fight back on it.

      Thanks.

      • deemac 6.2.1

        +1

      • Draco T Bastard 6.2.2

        +1

      • mickysavage 6.2.3

        Agreed RL.

      • LynWiper 6.2.4

        +1 totally agree RL

      • farmboy 6.2.5

        dont forget to lift up your dress when you sit down to pee,ya pansy

        • Te Reo Putake 6.2.5.1

          Excellent riposte, farmboy. I too remember the sixties and the terrific fun to be had accusing people of being homosexual because you can’t outhink them. Reminds me of an old joke:

          Farmboy is in court, accused of molesting a sheep. The judge gives him a withering look and asks if the sheep was a ram or a ewe.

          “A ewe your Honour! Whaddya think I am, queer?”

          • farmboy 6.2.5.1.1

            haha not bad you must be gutted we the most successful farmers in the world.Funny how people on here get all up in arms about gay jokes,untill directed at farmers, kind of fucked up but keep it up im amused

            • weka 6.2.5.1.1.1

              If by most successful farmers you mean leading the charge in completely fucking the environment while lining their pockets, then stand up and take a bow.

              (of course we also have some outstanding sustainabilty farmers here too, but I suspect that wasn’t what you mean).

            • Draco T Bastard 6.2.5.1.1.2

              It’d be interesting to see just how successful if you were actually held to account (ie, had to actually look after the environment) and didn’t get any government subsidies. I suspect that you’d be whinging that it was all too hard.

              • farmboy

                [QoT: Bored now.]

                • RedLogix

                  @ farmboy.

                  When I read your comments what I see is exactly the same behaviour as goes on in schoolyard bullying. You have made no argument of any sort, produced any evidence or tried to engage in conversation.

                  Of course this being the internet you can’t reach out and physically abuse us, but you are attempting to impose your emotional and psychological dreck upon us.

                  For the most part the people here simply shrug it off; we’ve lived through this kind of shit being dumped on us all our lives. We’ve learned that stooping to your level merely betrays our own values. There’s no satisfaction in that.

                  So feel free to troll away farmboy. It means little to us and if it somehow gives you a warm sticky feeling … then what’s the harm?

      • Macro 6.2.6

        Excellent comment RL totally agree.
        Am very disappointed in some of the nonsense being spouted – would hope we were past that sort of crap – but obviously not.

      • Huginn 6.2.7

        +1, here too

    • David H 6.3

      But that’s just typical right wing media policy, find what the left is doing, and get slimebucket to write some crap that really has nothing to do with the original draft policy, Call their tame Journo and hey presto, no Shonkey vs Kim Dot Com. Instead all we have are these pathetic headlines.

  7. vto 7

    So QoT, how do you deal with this msm problem?

    Seems more smarts needed to ensure the correct picture is picked up and portrayed in the media.

    More smarts.

    • QoT 7.1

      Well, that’s where we can start discussing the response from the Labour Party itself. I think if you’ve failed to stop a story breaking and being misrepresented, like this, you have to be bloody quick and decisive in your response, and stop people like Josie fucking Pagani from making things worse.

      • vto 7.1.1

        One thought: It seems the problem stemmed from schemes hatched in the bowels of the Labour Party and then discussed and promoted among the party. Hair-brained schemes, good and wise schemes, forward-thinking schemes, backwards-looking schemes, all sorts of schemes. Perhaps it is right here that the brakes need to go on lest these schemes get out and tarnish the entire Labour Party, which is what they do.

        It is no good trying to explain to the public that these things are only discussion points / part of a regional concference thingy / caucus thingy. Those explanations don’t wash with the public – they have no idea what they are and all they hear is what is printed in the media. This is a reality.

        So, in light of that, perhaps some tighter control of schemes and ideas. Either ban them from open discussion or create a separate place within the party where new ideas are discussed and formed (which is confidential). Or some other mechanism to control this type of discussion.

        Personally, Labour is a mainstream party and as such should not be bothering itself with ideas and schemes that are more fringe. Let other fringe parties attend to them and let those fringe parties bring the discussions into the public arena.

        Here is another mechanism – plant a plant in the Nats and learn how they do it….

        • Descendant Of Sssmith 7.1.1.1

          It is no good trying to explain to the public that these things are only discussion points

          I think the reverse. That is what should happen. I can’t see any reason to treat the public as stupid or to not convey the truth.

          Style over substance just pisses me off.

          Just tell the truth – consistently and regularly and build a reputation for not bullshitting.

          • vto 7.1.1.1.1

            I appreciate that DoS, and the public are surely not stupid I agree. And neither has any mention of bullshit been made.

            But the issue is, as QoT states, the manner in which the media operates. And the manner in which people consume news – quickly and briefly. Sure, they will understand about discussion points, if they have the time to read a whole lot, but they generally don’t have the time to read the detail. This manner of operation seems to work against the manner you describe and this man ban is a perfect illustration.

            I guess you can fight it if you want and continue as you wish, but don’t expect the results to be any different. Or, you can adjust the method of operation to suit this reality, and that should not involve treating people as stupid or bullshitting them either. Surely the intended result can still be arrived at.

        • weka 7.1.1.2

          Gender equity is not fringe, and it’s been on the agenda in society for a long time.

          By bowels of the Labour party I assume you mean the memberhip?

          I can sympathise to an extent with the desire to go secret (the GP ban on media at their last AGM for instance), but there are other ways to handle this. The fact that after a couple of days we have no idea who developed the proposed rule change, why it was a rule change and not some other kind of discussion, why it wasn’t alongside other gender equity proposals, how the process of development was managed particularly in relation to LECs and National Council and the PR dept of Labour… the fact that we don’t know those things tells me that Labour have pretty disfunctional internal systems. Do they even talk to each other? Did the person who put forward the final version of the rule change talk to the person who prepared teh document and did they discuss this with Labour party PR strategists?

          • vto 7.1.1.2.1

            That seems to be the problem to me weka – a disfunctional operating system for the Labour Party. It needs to be sharpened up to a knife edge, not blundering around making great blunt hacks at things and leaving a worse mess.

            Sharp knife for sharp incisions.

            Blunt knife equals mess.

          • Rogue Trooper 7.1.1.2.2

            well, Louisa Wall is publicly in support of the proposal weka
            http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10895113

            • Alanz 7.1.1.2.2.1

              As a man with balls and proud testosterone surging through my red hot blood veins, I support the proposal and thank Louisa.

              And thanks be given to so-called men like Shane Jones, in a party that would be better off without him, who demonstrate the value of ensuring such a policy does go through for the Labour Party.

              Next policy proposal please.

          • The Fan Club 7.1.1.2.3

            Weka, look, the thing is, this is in fact stuff that’s in the public arena. Barnett’s presser details this.

            The fact that after a couple of days we have no idea who developed the proposed rule change,

            (A) inside baseball and no-one cares anyway, and (b) in fact, this has been put out.

            why it was a rule change and not some other kind of discussion, why it wasn’t alongside other gender equity proposals,

            It was. It really, really was tried up with so many other proposals. The media didn’t cover them! There’s not a lot Labour can do about that, because guess what? “Culture changes” and so-on are boring and not newsworthy material.

            how the process of development was managed particularly in relation to LECs and National Council and the PR dept of Labour…

            Yes, god knows bureaucratic details of internal constitutional changes are exactly what will get lapped up…; also am pretty sure that Coatsworth and Barnett were briefing on this from lunchtime the day it broke…

            If Labour were to manage it’s internal process even more with an eye to PR, we may as well give and go home as far as having an open, democratic membership goes.

      • weka 7.1.2

        This from Jan Logie at the Greens, in response to Women’s Affairs Minister Jo Goodhew criticising the quota, saying people should be selected on their merit

        There is a wealth of evidence that shows entrenched gender bias is a reality. This article demonstrates it in the sciences:

        “To test scientist’s reactions to men and women with precisely equal qualifications, the researchers did a randomized double-blind study in which academic scientists were given application materials from a student applying for a lab manager position. The substance of the applications were all identical, but sometimes a male name was attached, and sometimes a female name.

        Results: female applicants were rated lower than men on the measured scales of competence, hireability, and mentoring (whether the scientist would be willing to mentor this student). Both male and female scientists rated the female applicants lower.”

        If the Minister of Women’s Affairs doesn’t recognise gender bias then we really are in trouble.

        I’m not saying quotas are necessarily the answer but it makes sense that they should be considered as a response to bias let alone historical discrimination. They’ve worked really well for us in the Green party.

        http://www.greens.org.nz/node/31702

        See Labour, and MSM, it’s really not that hard.

      • Jimmie 7.1.3

        [QoT: You will go much further in life (or, at least, in getting your comments through moderation) if you don't use phrases like "feminist rants" as pejoratives and also don't throw out ridiculous straw arguments.]

      • Sponge 7.1.4

        Wasn’t Josie a Labour candidate?

    • vto 7.2

      Coatsworth showed no smarts. In fact the reverse, she showed negative smarts. She didn’t just do the right thing badly, she did the wrong thing correctly.

      Smart, accurate and detailed thinking and actions are required if you want to avoid this problem again.

      smart

      accurate

      detailed

    • David H 7.3

      For the last year we have had a sycophantic media, and Key could have eaten live babies on the 6pm news and still got away with it.
      However things are starting to change, and John Key the Teflon PM is now the Badly tarnished PM with a convenient case of amnesia. But the MSM, and TV MSM in particular are still kissing Keys arse. And with Gower around to make shit up, and stir the pot, and all the other Free to air channels are just as bad. And on the Nation this morning, the main story/joke was the Man ban. FFS No John Key getting his arse handed to him by KDC and looking like the school bully and acting like it as well.
      And the the story was supposed to run for the weekend, then along come Labour riding the light blue horse to save the NATS from a weekend of embarrassment. No wonder the voters are deserting them in droves

      • RedLogix 7.3.1

        Key could have eaten live babies on the 6pm news and still got away with it.

        And pronounced them delicious. Our entire political scene at the moment alternates between boring, drearily incompetent and disgusting.

        • karol 7.3.1.1

          This week I’ve heard some very anti-John Key stuff raised by people I don’t usually talk politics with. There’s obviously a few people out there who are not taken in by the dominant pro-Key MSM spin. Some people who just see him as a con man that doesn’t have the interests of the majority of Kiwis at heart.

          • handle 7.3.1.1.1

            “Some people” does not win an election.

            • karol 7.3.1.1.1.1

              They may be “some people”, handle. But to me they seem to be pretty “ordinary”, or “everyday” kinds of people. I was surprised to hear them express such strong anti-Key views.

          • Mary 7.3.1.1.2

            But can that stuff get through the teflon? The weakness of our opposition might suggest it can’t, in my humble opinion, of course.

  8. Descendant Of Sssmith 8

    I can also see no good reason why Shearer, Mallard, etc have to explain it.

    They didn’t propose it.

    It’s obviously much too difficult to talk to the actual person who proved it about why and clearly BM needs a man’s opinion on it to be able to consider it’s relevance. Not that he’s really interested of course.

    Sometimes explaining just feeds the trolls.

  9. Blue 9

    The media are idiots, and you can’t really expect them to be anything else. As soon as someone coins a catchy term like ‘manban’ which will get people frothing appropriately, you can give up on any attempt at rational, balanced coverage.

    The problem is that Labour doesn’t understand this, and therefore keep on handing their enemies sticks to beat them with. This proposal, no matter how well-intentioned, is electoral suicide no matter how it is spun, and should never have seen the light of day.

    It’s yet another symptom of the current Labour party malaise – incompetence, ill-discipline and a tin ear for political realities.

    • BM 9.1

      True, it’s gone the way of the fart tax.

      From this point on this policy will be nothing but an anvil around the neck of the labour party.
      For a start it’s completely destroyed the next labour conference any positive rah rah stuff will be totally drowned out and destroyed by the ‘manban’ vote.

      Starting to feel a bit sorry for o’l Dave.

  10. Matthew Hooton 10

    You make good points re meritocracy (or lack of it). My party is one where Clem Simich beat David Kirk for the Tamaki nomination in 1992. Whatever arguments can be made against the manban proposal, arguing the status quo is a meritocracy isn’t one of them.

  11. Dazzer 11

    [QoT: Please read the mod note at the bottom of the post, then take your comment to an appropriate thread.]

    • Dazzer 11.1

      [QoT: Funnily enough, I'm more than happy to keep moderating people when they try to play the "you just hate disagreement" card. See the many disagreeing comments I let through which manage not to be rude and derailing.]

  12. Tigger 12

    Great post, Q.

    “And that’s ignoring the obvious disparities of gender, race and class between “who’s in Parliament”.

    Sexual orientation too. Notice the drop in Labourite out gay men? Carter, Chauvel – gone. I link it to the hate directed at them by O’Connor and others, the ‘gaggle of gays’ BS. Same will happen here. Now women will be blacklisted because choosing them looks PC. This was a hamfisted way to go about this. Policy is fine but did anyone think how this would read. It’s hurt, not helped this cause.

    I’d also like to see more Maori candidates in general electorates. And more disabled MPs. Question is – are policies like this the best way to make it happen?

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 12.1

      Of course they aren’t: quotas may have their place but they’re way down the list behind, for example, Spencer vs. MoH etc.

    • weka 12.2

      “Question is – are policies like this the best way to make it happen?”

      Discussion of proposed policies is one good thing to make it happen. And that’s what should be happening, both within Labour, and within the wider community via the media (if the media served democracy, rather than themselves).

    • QoT 12.3

      Well, Tigger, the merits of more proportional representation are being discussed in other posts – including the fact that there’s a lot of research to show that just saying “we want more women/POCs/PWDs” pretty much never achieves proportionality.

    • Descendant Of Sssmith 12.4

      There’s never a best way. There’s only different ways.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.4.1

        That would be incorrect, there is a best way but we just don’t know it as of this moment in time and thus will need to discuss it and try a few options until we do find it.

  13. unpcnzcougar 13

    Apologise in advance if this isn’t the correct thread for this comment – as a female and mother I would like to see a quota system in place for men teaching at Primary/Intermediate/High School.

    I sense this is one of the reasons why boys are trailing behind girls at schools and the times I see this issue discussed privately or publically it is akin to talking about the elephant in the room.

    [QoT: Wow, you're right, this isn't the correct thread for this comment. What on earth would make you think it was? We have Open Mike posts for a reason.]

  14. One Anonymous Knucklehead 14

    How best to approach the problem of media incompetence?

    1. Make better media and out-perform the existing lot with fact-checked well-written and resourced commentary.

    What does “better” media look like? Examples abound, pick your favourite.

    • infused 14.1

      I thought you’d already know by now. News isn’t news, it’s entertainment. Hence why this shit all got blown up.

      Ain’t anybody got time for news.

      IMO, all could have got shut down very easily from shearer. But he let it go on for 24 hours.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 14.1.1

        That must explain why the BBC makes so much money. No, wait…

        Well written fact-checked journalism is far more entertaining than partisan crap.

        • infused 14.1.1.1

          [QoT: Deleted. infused wore out his welcome last time.]

          • One Anonymous Knucklehead 14.1.1.1.1

            Which probably accounts for sites like this getting so many hits per month, and the decline in newspaper sales.

            How has it come to this? A dull bean-counter approach to the news – too much “cost-cutting”, the result: under-resourced desk-bound journalists.

            Even neo-liberals rely on accurate information from time to time.

          • weka 14.1.1.1.2

            Another brilliant and insightful contribution to the discussion there infused.

  15. Yes 15

    It’s about handling your own press and PR. Labour failed at both of them

    • QoT 15.1

      Nobody’s denying this. But it’s also about lazy media not even having the nous to ask basic questions – or alternatively, knowing full well they’re talking shit, but knowing they’ll get a headline or two and no one (outside of say leftwing blogs) will take them up on it.

      • infused 15.1.1

        [QoT: infused, after the last time? I'm still not happy with you commenting on my posts.]

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 15.1.1.1

          Two reasons they don’t need to are the lack of competition, and that partisan crap is cheaper to write.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 15.2

      That’s part of it, but there’s another part. An illustration:

      “The Labour Party’s feet of clay stumbled again today, as they let a golden opportunity to lead the gender debate go begging.

      Instead, it was left to National Party boot-boy Cameron Slater to break his own version of the story, which he did with typical disregard for the facts.

      What this says about the state of our two main political parties – one unable to speak and the other unable to speak the truth, is another matter, but it has certainly done nothing for the gender debate.”

      You see? Balance. Not that hard is it?

  16. Pete 16

    Railing against the media for simplifying a story down to the point of a two word sound bite is very much like King Canute trying to hold back the tide. We don’t live in a world where the media behaves as it should behave, instead the left needs to adapt and front-foot every message. And I don’t think that should be as hard as we might think. We’re not looking for the hearts and minds of the whole population. Just 50% + 1 of the people who show up to vote.

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      And this is the reality. As opposed to the Left hypothesizing on remaking the world on some fantastic image.

      • QoT 16.1.1

        Really, CV? You think that’s what’s going on here?

        Pete: my post doesn’t argue anything differently. I can, magically, be annoyed by the state of our media AND annoyed by Labour’s failure to deal with it at the same time!

  17. Jackal 17

    If politicians were appointed on merit, there would likely be more female representatives than men. That’s because females are usually more qualified and are more likely to make a business succeed when they’re running things…at least that’s what the research shows. It’s a pity the mainstream media has chosen to rely on misogynistic based speculation instead of the facts.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 17.1

      Given full equality (and as Chomsky said of Capitalism – “Show me some!”) I’m pretty sure that women can screw things up as badly as men. Exhibit a: Paula Bennett.

    • TheContrarian 17.2

      “females are usually more qualified and are more likely to make a business succeed when they’re running things…at least that’s what the research shows”

      Got a link to this research?

    • Jimmie 17.3

      Trouble is Labour is not exactly overflowing with successful business men or women.

      Plenty of academics and career politicians (and ex unionists) but as for successful ex business men/women apart from possibly Shane Jones it would be hard to name anyone else.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 17.3.1

        Hard for you perhaps, but then your lying Prime Minister has never run a business in his life either, and neither has your finance minister, who has lived off the public teat all his working life. Stephen Joyce’s claim to fame is the bankruptcy of everything he touches. Need I go on?

        It must be noted here that Labour are better economic managers than National too; higher gdp, balanced books etc.

        So not only do the so-called-but-actually-not “business friendly” National Party have less economic credibility, they are handicapped by the revolting culture of gender bullying that promotes dropkick incompetents like Aaron Gilmore (and Jimmie) over talented women. Shall we talk about David “receivership” Bennett?

        Most of them are only MPs because of their sex.

        • farmboy 17.3.1.1

          bill english owns farms mate case you dont know that is a business

          • Te Reo Putake 17.3.1.1.1

            Which he doesn’t personally run. He’s the owner, not the manager. Where is Dipton anyway? Does English know?

          • One Anonymous Knucklehead 17.3.1.1.2

            “Owns farms”

            Well, I suppose when you’re so corrupt you tell lies about your accommodation for money, it makes sense to buy up assets with your ill-gotten gains, but as TRP said, best leave the running to someone else. Perhaps someone with personal integrity and good business sense, because if Bill English ran his farms the way he repeatedly crashes this economy he might as well change his name to Crafar.

  18. Bill 18

    Given that parliament and msm, both reflect and are examples of the nature of power in society – ie, are patriarchal – then how could the msm be anything but critical of any idea (good or bad) designed to challenge the power structures that also run through their own organisations? It’s not that such a challenge would be ‘unthinkable’…but it sure as fuck wouldn’t come ‘naturally’. What comes ‘naturally’ are precisely the types of lines we are getting from them, and those lines require no spin to be generated.

    I’m not suggesting that makes what they are saying acceptable or wholly inevitable. Just that these lines are a consequence of their own culture and not a glitch or an example of stupidity that they themselves might remedy or not repeat in the future: that would require the msm being spun.

    • weka 18.1

      Maybe, but I cant help but think that there have been times in the past when the issue of equity for women in parliament would have been handled better by the MSM. Think Kim Hill on Nine to Noon instead of Kathryn Ryan. I fear we have lost ground in the past few decades in terms of how we talk about gender issues publicly.

      • Colonial Viper 18.1.1

        That probably goes for most issues of public and civil importance

  19. Rogue Trooper 19

    you may have seen this Bryce Edwards summary Queen, lamenting the focus on “identity politics” generally;
    -60-80% of New Zealanders are ‘working- class’ , depending on the sociological definition one uses.
    -concern over the blindness to economics, inequality and power (which, ironically, are arguments for quota)
    -essentially “Pagani is asserting that class and economics are more important than gender and feminism”
    -Labour lacks representation from lower socio-economic groups (once again, societal sectors disproportionately containing females: single parents, low-wage earners etc).

    Moi? realpolitik.

    ps. The Standard et al; get a mention.

    • Pascal's bookie 19.1

      Pagani et al have an argument that gets trotted (heh) out all the time around identity issues.

      They are sad and angry that the left attracts votes from the liberal middle class, and that it isn’t as strong among the working class as it ought to be.

      The argument goes that it is the middle class liberalism which has pulled Labour to the center and that it is driving out the working class conservatives. And to an extent, there may be some truth there ( a sliver). But we rarely get to see data.

      More to the point is that the Labour hasn’t moved to the center by adopting identity issues. That is grade A toxic bullshit. This is easily demonstrated by how the right reacts to identity politics.

      The left has moved to the center by abandoning things like redistribution as anything other than a band aid. That, surprise surprise, is what is hurting them in the working class. Labour abandoned the working class conservatives not by adopting identity politics, but by abandoning fighting for the working class.

      The only thing Pagani ( and Shane Jones and numerous others) seem to have to offer the working class, is conservatism on identity issues. Now how the fuck is that a left wing thing to do? Let alone a Labour party thing to do.

    • QoT 19.2

      I’m seriously disappointed in Bryce’s column, to be honest. The argument only works if you presume that the “60-80% working class” group doesn’t include working-class Maaori, working-class women, working-class people with disabilities, working-class queer people.

      The only other thing I would add, besides +1-ing everything PB said, is that I also find it hilarious for people to say Labour should ditch identity politics for working-class politics. As though it’s only evil feminists and brown people who have been stopping Labour from giving a shit about economic disparity, and not the centre-right tendencies of many of its senior people.

      • handle 19.2.1

        Yes, that ‘either-or’ argument has always been weak.

      • Rogue Trooper 19.2.2

        + , now you know my thoughts on IP, yet, as handle identifies, it is ‘this’ and ‘that’. Still, there is the environment to consider.

      • weka 19.2.3

        “The argument only works if you presume that the “60-80% working class” group doesn’t include working-class Maaori, working-class women, working-class people with disabilities, working-class queer people.”

        It also presuposes that working class people aren’t politicised around ethnicity, gender, disability etc. Which is a bloody patronising generalisation.

        This also from Bryce

        “The Maori Party’s major weakness appears to have been its core model of operating as an ethnicity-based party, independent of class and other political forces”

        He really hasn’t been paying attention has he. What does he think that split between the MP and Mana was about?

      • Mary 19.2.4

        Why does the Labour Party think that women should want to be part of them, anyway? Those who think this must believe Labour’s got something to offer in the first place. Maybe Labour’s problem is simpler than they think?

    • weka 19.3

      I’m still waiting for someone to explain why class politics aren’t identity politics too.

      • handle 19.3.1

        Lack of imagination.

      • QoT 19.3.2

        Because identity politics are bad and class politics are good. It’s simple, really.

        • weka 19.3.2.1

          I assume it’s because class politics came early on when only men could vote and be MPs. So class got defined as proper politics, because that was the primary battle amongst white men. Not like that trendy lefty (oh dear) stuff that comes later (and can always be put aside until the time is right).

      • Rogue Trooper 19.3.3

        nested hierarchies

      • Descendant Of Sssmith 19.3.4

        Can’t explain wrong thinking so no explanation can be given.

        Simply by virtue of discrimination those who are disadvantaged via identity are more like to have lower earning opportunity and are more likely therefore to be working class.

      • Colonial Viper 19.3.5

        “I’m still waiting for someone to explain why class politics aren’t identity politics too.”

        A: academically, class politics are certainly a kind of identity politics. In practice, issues of class often overrule, superceed or at least modify the considerations or experience of other forms of identity politics.

        As an example, old money class, wealthy, well educated business professional and gay.

        • QoT 19.3.5.1

          Dude, seriously. Google “intersectionality” before you embarrass yourself further. All forms of privilege can mitigate other forms of oppression, all forms of oppression can interact to create extra levels/types of disadvantage.

          • Sosoo 19.3.5.1.1

            I’m sure that poverty stricken children would love to spend their time contemplating concepts from the lightweight side of the social sciences (a fact which makes your patronising tone that much more amusing). Or perhaps they’ll spend their time thanking the identity politics brigade whose myopia, selfishness and egotism made it certain that they would live under another three years of a hostile National government.

            When people tell you to shut up, it isn’t always because they are the evil patriarchy. Sometimes it’s because you’re screwing it up for everyone, including yourselves.

            [QoT: Your wilful misreading of the post will be left unedited here so people can see exactly why any future comments of yours will be deleted. You think poverty-stricken children don't feel the effects of racism, sexism, or ableism? It's not "lightweight social sciences", it's their lived experience.

            Thanks for the early tip, though, it's good to be forewarned that Labour's inevitable fuckup at the next election will yet again be blamed on its critics and not its leaders.]

            • McFlock 19.3.5.1.1.1

              The kids wouldn’t be poverty-stricken if mum was paid as much as a man, and wasn’t limited to low-paid jobs with flexible working hours because kids finish school at 3.

            • karol 19.3.5.1.1.2

              And the Key government gets replaced with…. what?

              We currently have a very some fairly traditionally male-dominated government, which is prioritising masculine value: values that foreground a version of the economy that equates a strong economy with commercial activity. It includes the increasing marginalisation of community and public sector work that makes a significant contribution to the public good. And it is largely women, waged and on benefits, who are taking the brunt of this in Key’s “war on the poor”.

              Yet Team Shearer’s response is to be every bit as masculinist as Team Key, and to embrace a return to misogynistic dark ages as a way to court the (male?) working class vote. Shearer’s failure to comment of Shane Jones (blatantly offensive towards women), looks to me like a return to Shearer’s fiddler-on-the-roof style. (Referring to Jones labeling women politicians as “geldings”).

              I find Team Shearer’s inadequacies on so many fronts, to be thoroughly depressing.

              • Rogue Trooper

                regarding the ‘public sector’, man, are they laying back and takin’ it with the widespread utilization of personality tests ; they are even being used to screen for casualties of downsizing (redundancies).

              • weka

                I’d have to reread it, but I thought Jones was calling Labour men geldings for letting wimmin try and run the show again (geldings being castrated male animals). Either ways its deeply misogynistic and offensive.

          • Colonial Viper 19.3.5.1.2

            Intersectionality, you planning to win many votes with that?

            • McFlock 19.3.5.1.2.1

              not the Waitakere Man vote (well, maybe some of the gay ones).

            • QoT 19.3.5.1.2.2

              You mean, would I, if I were in a political campaign, try to understand the many different types of power and oppression which affect people’s lives in order to relate my policies to their needs, and assume this would endear me to them?

              Why don’t you have three guesses at the answer.

              • Colonial Viper

                So now you’re going to campaign to the wider electorate through analysing their needs as people based on concepts of intersectionality and other related approaches, in order to change for the better the conditions of power and oppression that they live under.

                Very cool.

            • weka 19.3.5.1.2.3

              BAU with the patriarchy, you planning to win many votes with that CV? How’s it going so far for Labour?

              And then what happens if by some fluke Labour manage to get enough votes to form a govt? After the election won’t be the time to look at all the non-rich, white, male people’s needs, because Labout will need time to get settled in. A year later won’t be the right time either, because they’ll have had a leadership coup and need time to recover (all that nasty media coverage). Two years later, still no, because now they need time to cement the Real policies they were elected on. Two and half years, nope, because now there is an election. See how this works?

              But thanks for the scraps thrown from the table in the meantime.

              • Colonial Viper

                “See how this works”

                We both recognise that things are not working for Labour and have not been for a long time.

                If you think “patriarchy” is a major cause of that, I hope you can help get rid of it asap so Labour can start smashing National in the polls.

                At 50% female MPs instead of 41%, Labour would have 3 more women MPs today out of 34. Should make a big difference to how the electorate views how ready Labour is to govern, and hence bring a win in 2014 into grasp.

  20. QoT 20

    Yep. Kinda proves my point.

  21. Populuxe1 21

    If Labour is as dedicated to gender equality among it’s MPs as it claims to be and should be, they should have been able to handle it within the list of their own accord, and by making a special effort in recruitment and candidate training. That would have caused far less of a confused furore than this tin-eared presentation of the idea in question. Labour’s primary and overriding concrn right now should be galvinising support, not scaring the horses, and getting the scumlords of NACT out of power if there is any part of the country left worth saving.

    [QoT: Yet again we're characterising this draft remit as though it's official Labour Party leadership-endorsed policy. And we're going to stop doing that.]

    • Populuxe1 21.1

      Even not treating it as Labour Party leadership-endorsed policy (which obviously it isn’t because Mumblefuck has clucked), why not offer a remit that tackles things at the culture level using the perfectly adequate tools already in place in the party and isn’t going to play directly into the hands of the right wing? How did it get out there in the first place? And to rephrase, the primary and overriding concern of all cliques and interest groups within Labour right now should be galvinising support, not scaring the horses, and getting the scumlords of NACT out of power if there is any part of the country left worth saving.

    • The Fan Club 21.2

      Poppy, what makes you think we haven’t tried that, darling?

      It isn’t the list either. It’s the electorates. Do try and keep up…

      • Populuxe1 21.2.1

        The electorates might just possibly want a say before something that dramatic is imposed on them, whereas you can pretty much put anyone anywhere you like on the list. Don’t fuck with the electorates or they might just not vote for you. Do you even do politics, darling?

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 21.2.1.1

          Such an imposition, this new voluntary power would be. So onerous. Ow my back!

        • Macro 21.2.1.2

          Do you even understand the proposal? Or are you just mouthing from empty space again? I realise you are coming from behind because as QoT has succinctly put it The Media have got their grundies (masculine underpants) in a twist in a clear attempt to kibosh the thing. But do try to keep up – the electorates will have their say in due time. And remember that > 50% of the population is female.

  22. [QoT: Fuck off, Brett. You've ruined enough interesting threads this week.]

  23. Herodotus 23

    How will achieving this proposed quota benefit nz and or women within nz?
    So in a few years time the gender split within labour caucus will be 50:50. What will change or what are the expectations and how do these expectations differ than without any quota ?
    Will as is current a 40% representation weaken any perspective or decision making ability by a government or parkiamnet than a 50% rep would allow?
    I have not read how this proposal other than for appearances sake will delivery anything different.

    [QoT: IT'S. NOT. A. FUCKING. QUOTA. There is also a quota proposed - which isn't even new, as I understand, it's changing a target which already exists. But that is not what got everyone panicky.]

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 23.1

      You haven’t read anything. Is that because you can’t find anything or because you haven’t looked?

      • Herodotus 23.1.1

        If you are so well informed how about a link or 2 as to what will be achieved ? I have taken a day or 2 reading the posts and not knee jerked into responding , I have not read what this will achieve by this.
        And qot how will this achieve any seismic changes in outcomes or new outcomes that would not have occurred without such a change. Ie what difference will we see ?? Will maternity leave benefits be increase due to this, will professions dominated by women ( eg teachers, nurses) be rewarded or benchmarked against similar professions that men dominate eg police? I doubt it. So what changes ?

        • McFlock 23.1.1.1

          What difference do we see because of the Maori seats?
          I’m sorry, my scrying glass is broken – all I know is that there will probably be a difference, and for the better.

          • Herodotus 23.1.1.1.1

            How will it be for the better ? some detail would be appreciated.
            Will there be new policy introduced that wold not have been given the status quo, will by having ( should labour be able to govern on here own) better decision making ?

            • weka 23.1.1.1.1.1

              Do you honestly not think that having more women in parliament will have any positive affect on how parliament deals with issues important to women?

              • Herodotus

                Are you saying that those currently in parliament have been lacking in putting forward issues that are not important to women ( using your phrasing) and that the male colleagues are unable to see these issues and not be supportive.
                I am sure in many cases male mp’s understand issues that are perceived important to women. They are not the racing, rugby and beer types. Good policy should be acknowledged by all.

                • McFlock

                  I am sure in many cases male mp’s understand issues that are perceived important to women

                  Well, when you exclude the Jones/O’Conner types, the number of male MPs that this would apply to seems to shrink dramatically.

        • karol 23.1.1.2

          The idea of quotas was actually something raised by Judy McGregor in her speech to the NZ Labour Party last year – it was one of at least 3 suggestions.

          It’s a pity journalists have such short term memories, and/or failed to pay attention to anything much at the conference beyond looking to see if Cunliffe was leading a rebellion.

          Damn, looking at what I posted on this last year, it’d be tempting to re-post it….. if only I knew how.

          Because, it’s pretty much in keeping with what I have been thinking about the quota issue now.

        • karol 23.1.1.3

          Oh, and this is the actual remit proposed this year, as linked to by a Labour Party Press statement.

  24. Clive Bixby 24

    [QoT: Fuck off, troll.]

  25. karol 25

    Excellent post, QOT.

    I’ve been close to banging my head against the wall in frustration at the way the MSM and many others have dutifully followed the whalespew on this.

    Also I am unimpressed with Mike Williams – he needs to learn a bit about how sexism works. And Josie Pagani. And disappointed in Bryce Edwards.

    This morning I saw a front page blurb on the NZ Herald for Fran O’Sullivan’s take on it. I mistakenly thought I wouldn’t be able to stomach her addition to the outflow of misunderstanding. Actually, on reading her piece, for once I agree with some of Fran O’Sullivan’s opining. Her opening paragraph had me a bit worried as to where she was going:

    Congratulations to Party Central for putting gender equality ahead of diversity when it comes to the ranking criteria for selecting the next crop of Labour MPs.

    But then she continues:

    Quaintly, the notion that a 21st century political party might opt to use its selection process to try to make sure that as many women as men represent us in Parliament has been met with howls of derision and barely disguised outrage.

    That’s just on the Labour side of politics. Let’s point out here that the most vocal MP opponents (Yes, I am talking about you, Shane Jones and you, Clayton Cosgrove) are only there themselves by virtue of their list rankings.

    You see, not enough of those blue-collar men which these obviously middle-class male MPs now put on pedestals and consider Labour’s voting base, voted for this pair in 2011 so they could win electorate seats. Maybe a spirited woman could have done the trick?

    There is also a too-obvious presumption that the women who might come into Parliament after a bit of list manoeuvring will be unqualified for the role.

    Frankly, that is absurd. There is no reason why Labour (or any other political party – like National if it ever gets with the programme) should not seek out well-qualified female candidates and (hopefully) from a broader pool than the unionist/teacher/public servant range which has enabled Labour to become stereotyped in recent years.

    Surely, such candidates can stay focused on the major issues facing New Zealand. This is hardly a zero sum game.

    And on it goes….

    I’m not so keen on her reasoning around including gender plus ethnic and other diversity – she seems to kind of pit them against each other. But, she does seem to agree that something extra needs to be done to get a broader representation of all sections of society, including gender, ethnicity etc.

  26. karol 26

    Is it just me, or has something strange happened to the numbering and positioning of comments?

  27. karol 27

    I’m also disappointed in Selwyn Manning’s post on this over at the Daily Blog. Manning usually does excellent stuff, but this time….

    For instance, he says this:

    The true test of whether a policy is right or wrong is to turn it on its head. For example, would it be right to exclude women from selection? Would it be right to exclude candidates on the basis of ethnicity, race, religion, sexual orientation? No, of course not. Just as it is wrong for any entity to exclude people from employment or opportunity based on their gender.

    I haven’t seen the Nation slot, but, spot the problem with this for a discussion on the importance of gender balance:

    The Nation’s host Duncan Garner had a fabulous line up to debate all the angles: Chris Trotter, Martyn Bomber Bradbury, Jordan Williams and Labour’s own Sue Moroney.

    I guess gendering of politics (and political commentariate) runs deep.

    • karol 27.1

      PS: On the first quote from Manning: Maori seats?

    • Rogue Trooper 27.2

      hope to watch on the ‘morrow

    • QoT 27.3

      AAAAAAAAARGH.

      You know what? If we had a Parliament of 80 women MPs and 40 men MPs, and women MPs were routinely placed in safe, winnable seats and high-ranking Cabinet positions and all the other systemic advantages men are currently given? It WOULD be fucking appropriate to start talking about men-only lists. But this would involve us living in a parallel fucking universe.

      Aaaaaaaaaaaaargh I’m so fucking angryyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy

      • Rogue Trooper 27.3.1

        Here’s Everybody Loves Chris taking the low road (footpath).

        • QoT 27.3.1.1

          I’m sorry, RT. I already took a sacred vow not to read his thoughts on the matter, for the sake of my brain.

          • Rogue Trooper 27.3.1.1.1

            was thinking, as you do, these intersections,
            -there are some people of difference in the current Labour caucus
            -the issues around political representation of identities in addition to traditional gender may be more salient to younger left voters, which has the potential to grow, or renew the Labour constituency in electorates, particularly in the significant large urban electorates.
            -However, there is a lot of suggestion in political prediction, that conservative values will have a greater influence on voting behaviour in the coming years.
            -there has been verifiable commentary in the media that older women may not be as supportive of positive discrimination as their younger, or more politicized counterparts.
            -definitely intersections of income (therefore socio-economic class) with minority identity status, along with minority identity intersecting with other social disadvantage.
            -Generation X, and older, unless personally concerned with issues of identity, may not be as motivated by the politicization of such as younger generations.
            -Successful Generation Y and older may be more concerned with the material status that has characterized the history and political influences of their cohorts, along with,say, national security and law and order.
            -There has been an obvious backlash against (even the publication of ) these proposals by both men and women representing the Left.

            Still, if the proposals are sensible enough for Colin James, I believe you can rest your case, and your moderation whip (OK, keep it cracking) 8-)

      • weka 27.3.2

        Yeah I’m gobsmacked.

        And fuck Selwyn Manning’s inane and demeaning poll at the bottom of his post. All I can take from what he has done is that he is some how offended as a man at the idea that all is not fair in the world and we might have to take some actual steps to make men share power with women.

        Someone should put Louisa Wall in charge of Labour.

        • Mary 27.3.2.1

          She will be in charge of Labour one day…in the not-so-distant future, I hope. Not quite now, but at some point not too far away. The current problem is what to do now. Maybe we could could entice Steve Maharey into taking a sabbatical leading Labour til it’s Lousia’s time?

        • QoT 27.3.2.2

          Someone should put Louisa Wall in charge of Labour.

          SERIOUSLY.

      • karol 27.3.3

        Good statement in the comments.

        And Selwyn’s response?

        This issue has really exposed just how deeply the masculine dominance of politics runs (as much an issue of attitude and approach as of numbers).

        I’m staggered.

        It’s not as if we also aren’t fully aware of the struggles people are dealing with in a day-to-day basis, because of poverty and the ruthlessness of our current government.

    • Mary 27.4

      Why do some people think Jordan Williams’ views are worth reporting?

    • rosy 27.5

      “The true test of whether a policy is right or wrong is to turn it on its head.”

      Hmm, how about we turn the current selection processes on their heads and see what happens. If it appears that one group has been favoured then maybe work out a policy to fix the process.

      Hang on….

  28. BeeDee 28

    The present game is “Flick Chick”. and aren’t we over that!

  29. Sanctuary 29

    I don’t much to add – these two quotes pretty much sum up my views:

    “…It’s a draft policy remit from a party committee which is going to the conference to be discussed and potentially included in the party’s rules, which would allow individual electorates to voluntarily request that only women be shortlisted if the party council agrees on a case-by-case basis…”

    And

    “…The discussion isn’t stupid. The non-decision to wait for Cameron Slater to initiate the debate was though. Beyond stupid, in fact: the sort of blunder that only a complete tool would make…”

    However, I would like to thank QoT for the time taken to moderate this comments thread. It has been a breath of fresh air to see the serial trolls dealt to in such a comprehensive way.

    The trolling of this site is so comprehensive that it wouldn’t surprise me if it was revealed to be organised and deliberate – especially as the way this story was “broken” and then repeated by the traditional media reveals the power of blogs in a world where corporate media journalists are now just tabloid keyboard jockeys who are nothing more than lazy, reactionary, repeaters of what they read on the internet.

    I guess to moderate ever thread this way would just be way, way to intensive – but it would improve the impact of this site on the credulous useful idiots who interview the internet for their tabloid fodder for the talkback Taliban, Daily Mail lite newspapers and 6pm news.

    • QoT 29.1

      Thanks, Sanc. As you say, it’s hard work moderating threads (we all have to sleep, and most of us at TS only moderate our own stuff.) Doing it full-time would be, well, a full-time job. Hence why I maintain my own much-quieter corner of the internet for the bulk of my posts.

      • handle 29.1.1

        I also appreciate the firmer moderation you have shown is possible here with this post, Queen. Wading through acres of trolling to read the useful stuff is often not worth the effort.

    • weka 29.2

      I agree Sanctuary, it changes the debate hugely when that dumb shit just gets taken out.

  30. fender 30

    Growth off the back of a natural disaster “farmboy”, people died for that growth you insensitive gas cloud.

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    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Solid Energy decision delay sensible
    Today’s announcement by the Board of Solid Energy that it will delay making a final decision on re-entering the Pike River mine is a sensible move, Labour’s MP for  West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “It has been clear for some...
    Labour | 28-10
  • New York Green Bank off to a $1B start
    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced late last week the New York Green Bank’s first NZD$1 billion tranche of green energy investments. The projects, which are difficult for the private sector to finance, are now possible by New York Green...
    Greens | 28-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • False birth registration brings home detention
    A Whangarei woman who attempted to register the birth of a fictitious child to claim a sole parent benefit was sentenced to six months home detention in the Whangarei District Court today....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Family of Robert Ellis demand a proper investigation
    The family of a New Zealander killed in Indonesia are growing increasingly concerned at the lack of information they’ve received, and the handling of the investigation into his murder....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Minister of Health must account for aged care workers’ pay
    The New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW NZ) congratulates rest-home worker Kristine Bartlett on her landmark claim for equal pay from her employer and successfully pursuing this to the Court of Appeal....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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