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“Minister for Small Things”

Written By: - Date published: 9:37 am, March 1st, 2013 - 51 comments
Categories: capital gains, class war, david cunliffe, housing, overseas investment, tertiary education, tv - Tags: ,

Yesterday, David Cunliffe, in response to Peter Dunne’s Student Loan Amendment Bill, labelled Dunne as “Minister for Small Changes” (to the student loan and child support Bills), and “Minister for Small Things”.  Small, but significant in relation to Dunne’s MO.

Cunliffe talked about the growing inter-generational swindle being perpetrated by the current costs of getting a university education, compared with the cost of “Old Peter” Dunne’s higher education.  Born in 1954 he likely paid nothing for his tertiary education, and is leading a “charmed life” on a ministerial salary, and in a few years can claim superannuation.  Cunliffe argued that Dunne doesn’t agree with “paying forward” to give the same advantages to today’s young people that Dunne received.

If Dunne had been born in 1995, and wanted to do the same university study of undergraduate and graduate study of 5 years, it would cost $5,000-$6,000 (and some change) per year.  Thus before heading to work, he’d be looking at $30,000 debt for fees alone, without considering living costs, which would extend the debt to $64,000 plus.

So today “young Peter” would be unable to afford a mortgage.  Meanwhile those of “Old Peter’s” generation who have invested in capital gains-free housing, have created the destructive housing bubble.

And yesterday, Peter Dunne used Twitter to smear as racist, the Green’s statements about limiting the ability of non-NZ residents to buy property in NZ.  TV3 gave it an anti-Asian slant last night.  The TV3 report stated,

Almost two-thirds of voters want restrictions placed on foreigners buying property in order to bring house prices down, according to the latest 3 News Reid Research poll.

Of the 200 people at an auction on Auckland’s North Shore today about half were Asian. Three houses sold in 20 minutes, all to Asians.

If the bidders aren’t New Zealand residents or citizens, if they are foreign buyers – the Greens would like restrictions placed on them.

They say it’s not racist; it’s about controlling house prices.

“Most New Zealanders are not racist. They understand that it is simply people from overseas that are driving up the price of property,” says party co-leader Russel Norman.

Two-thirds of voters agree with the Greens.

Asked, if to make houses more affordable the Government should put restrictions in place to stop foreigners from buying up investment properties here, 63 percent said yes, 30 percent no and the rest didn’t know.

Under law, in Australia non-residents cannot buy established dwellings as investment properties. The Greens want a similar ban here – at least on investment properties – but the Prime Minister won’t go there.

Dunne applied TV3’s anti-Asian slant to the Greens, even while repeating the Greens’ disclaimer of such a slant. [h/t gobsmacked]

The Green and Left xenophobes seem to be out tonight! They don’t like foreigners owning property but say it’s nothing to do with race!!!

And then Dunne followed this up with a bit of Godwin:

The Greens & Labour’s attacks on Asians owning property has eerie overtones of Nazi Germany singling out groups because of race. Not decent.

The crisis in (un)affordable housing has several causes, though all linked by underlying “neoliberal” policies and propaganda.  The main focus continues to be on the affordability of home buying.  However, the crisis is most severe for those on low incomes that are renting.  The more intense focus on home buying is part of the problem.  Also part of the problem are big spending non-resident buyers of property in NZ (from diverse countries including the US and Europe), and the shifting of the goal posts over the last few decades.

A large number of boomers don’t own property, especially those who have always been on relatively low incomes.  However, with the “neoliberal” swindle, even middle income young people are now suffering as a result of the housing crisis.

Of course, those boomers like Dunne who have benefited from the rise and rise of the “neoliberal” swindle, want to keep it that way.

51 comments on ““Minister for Small Things””

  1. johnm 1

    Dunne is a tit feeder on whichever government is in power. YUK! No wonder we’re in a mess with the likes of him.

    • geoff 1.1

      I think we can all agree that Peter Dunne is a reptile who would sell his own grandmother if it helped his chances.

      • aerobubble 1.1.1

        Greens should return the favor, if Labour want Greens in the tent, Dunne has to be ignored completely.

      • Tim 1.1.2

        Indeed Geoff. Sincere condolences to his wife. It is of course a sign of how desperate he’s becoming.
        Not that long ago (hours), I was in Countdown J’ville (in the 12 items or less Express Queue).
        There, ahead of me, was someone with a blue rinse, all togged up with about 50 items she was expecting the cashier to process. As she did – she was engaging in political discourse – speaking as loudly as she possibly could with the cashier – in order to be heard by all. An obvious Dunne supporter. She exuded a sense of entitlement from her every pore. Behind me in the queue, about 20 people had built up were watching in amusement and with disdain.
        I’m hoping those 20 will turn up to vote come election day. The Blue Rinse lady had absolutely no idea of how she was being observed and judged by the 20 plus in the queue behind.
        I thought to myself …. the epitome of the current National Party.
        I’d actually wished I’d been standing in line with a Finlayson or someone of his ilk. An OK sort of fella but someone sat in a bugger’s muddle of a Party full of the likes of the social climbing wankers, wankeresses and snobbery of the important Mrs Blue Rinse.
        I wondered what Skeith Wholeyoak and others would be thinking – especially about the likes of Finlayson et al) – not that I’ve ever voted for such a incompetent political party (Neshnool).
        Then I thought to myslelf ….. this situation – the predicament, the attitude, the completely out-of-touch idea of the grande electorate is what a Labour ABC cabal is.
        UGLY, in every sense of the word.

      • Arfamo 1.1.3

        Dunne is just another example of how in NZ today if you don’t stand for anything you can stand for Parliament.

  2. ropata 2

    the greens are right, as usual. but this will never happen as long as most voters are also property owners, and there’s easy money to be made. most of our fellow kiwis don’t understand that true wealth = assets, they are dazzled by dollar signs

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      Actually, it seems that most voters agree with the Greens. The problem is that Labour and National don’t.

  3. vto 3

    Calling for a ban on foreigners owning any property in NZ clearly covers all races so how on earth can it be racist?

    • Arfamo 3.1

      It’s not racist. And Dunne knows that. He just knows that making up and constantly repeating lies, especially big lies, works. Goebels was a master of the technique.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 3.2

      The way TV3 portrayed it was certainly racist and they could have done better on this one.

  4. vto 4

    There is no advantage to having foreigners own our land. It is solely detrimental. Hence why so many other countries, like China, don’t allow it.

    This is distinct from “foreign investment”. Don’t let the deceptive pricks mix the two issues up.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      And we don’t need foreign investment either which is also bad for our society. Really, why do we need foreign currency to use resources we already own?

  5. jbug 5

    Thank goodness someone is actually delivering it to the National coalition in the House. About time! Good on the Labour hierarchy for finally starting to use the talent in the caucus for good effect!

    • Arfamo 5.1

      Yes but look at how empty the debating chamber is. He may be “delivering it” to the National coalition but nobody gets to know about it from the MSM.

  6. prism 6

    Is it racist to worry about the effect of China on our economy when the majority of clothes and tools etc etc which we buy are made in China? It’s a cheap shot to condemn reasonable concern and discussion as ‘racist’. Property purchasing from overseas by people with access to riches beyond our own distorts our market in this small country. That’s a fact and to understand it we need to look at all nationalities, but China is constantly in our lives for many reasons including the actions of some Chinese businesspeople in bringing our main money earner, milk powder, into disrepute, temporarily this time.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/6368089/Who-is-really-buying-New-Zealand

    How to for overseas people wanting to buy property in NZ
    http://propertypanel.co.nz/blog/owning-a-slice-of-paradise/

    Another info piece for overseas investors looking at Auckland.
    http://www.escapeartist.com/OREQ13/Real_Estate_In_New_Zealand.html
    Right now we are spending a great deal of our time with the New Zealand market. In particular we are concentrating on the Auckland region that is proving to be an increasingly popular investment choice for many of our International investors. There are a number of reasons for this, growth is good, rental yields are relatively high, acquisition costs are low, taxes are low, foreign ownership is hassle free and the exchange rate for most foreign investors is particularly favorable.

    Compared to other similar developed cities across the world Auckland is offering excellent value and many suggest that in relative terms it is undervalued. Add to this its continued high projected population growth and limited supply of land and it is easy to see why many investors are excited about Auckland.
    In addition New Zealand has largely stayed out of world politics (post September 11), this plus its relative isolation is having many see it as a nice place to invest and possibly to live in the future as it is increasingly being seen as a safe haven. This article will look at some of the factors that make New Zealand, and in particular in and around Auckland a good place to invest and how as an international investor you can go about this process.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/7810453/Property-linked-to-high-dollar
    “Fundamentally, New Zealand has a high exchange rate because we’re an attractive place for foreign investors to put their money,” Crampton says….
    But we still have a dollar worth almost US82 cents that is killing our exporters, as the New Zealand Manufacturers and Exporters Association has been saying for years.

    And the International Monetary Fund says the kiwi is about 15 per cent overvalued. It has said that repeatedly, at least as far back as May 2010.
    The high exchange rate is making buying into NZ an attractive option for overseas investors, at the same time as it makes it more expensive to run manufacturing here providing employment to NZ.

    • karol 6.1

      Good to see you back commenting, prism, and with a very full and informative comment.

      This bit from the first link to stuff is especially interesting:

      Figures released by the Overseas Investment Office show that of the 872,313 hectares of gross land sold to foreign interests over the past five years, only 223ha were sold to Chinese.

      People from the landlocked principality of Liechtenstein had purchased 10 times more land than the Chinese – 2,144ha in the same period.

      The top buyers were the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and Israel. The United States had 194 purchases for a total of 193,208ha.

      • stargazer 6.1.1

        thanx carol. i was having this debate on facebook yesterday ie that there is no credible proof that chinese or asians are buying more land than other foreign nationals. i was really disappointed with the way tv3 news covered this story, which then allows the nonsense comments we got from peter dunne.

      • prism 6.1.2

        Yes karol that was interesting. I can understand, as I said earlier, why the Chinese came up in people’s sights, Crafar farms was such a big parcel of was it 16, farms. They would have had individual owners before the Crafar guy worked his magic to buy them probably with leverage provided from finagling banks. And there was so much publicity around this ‘brave little battler’.
        Many hoped that they would be able to be bought by keen NZ sharemilkers.

        Of course the problem is that we are well trained dogs in NZ – anybody wealthy from overseas can offer us a flavoursome money treat and we’ll extend our paw for a shake and roll over to have our tummies tickled instead of showing our teeth to ensure proper respect for us as we guard our territory.

      • Poission 6.1.3

        Liechtenstein is a tax haven that uses the same methodology of hidden foreign trusts as NZ to hide assets and avoid tax

  7. fenderviper 7

    Dunne has obviously been getting too involved in the new ‘legal high’ testing. He must have a cocktail of chemicals flowing through his blackened blood and it’s also making his hair fall out. What the people of Ohariu see in this fool needs explaining, I know he’s apparently present everywhere in the electorate but can’t people there see he’s nothing but a flake. The answer may lie in the electorate I guess, as from my experience these folk would probably vote for Colin Craig if Dunne was to admit he has nothing to contribute and retire.
    I look forward to the end of UF and Act sooner rather than later, they are both irrelevant in these times and are only around thanks to modern medicine and blue rinse hair dye.

  8. Poission 8

    The minister for money laundering and tax evasion also decided that Hollywood needed a gst break

    http://taxpolicy.ird.govt.nz/news/2012-04-23-minister-introduce-new-gst-measures

    • aerobubble 8.1

      Hard on citizens, ease up on business. This has breed lazy boardrooms and exodus of skilled kiwis.

      The role of government is to create a happy content society, and breed hard nosed boardrooms, but Dunne has consistently does the opposite.

      When we train rugby players, we don’t lower the bar, cut the weight they have to lift, we don’t losen the rules, in fact as the numbers of lean motivated rugby players increases we raise standards of training, we create clearer rules, and consistently review.

      Business in NZ does not need more investment (to pay down debt or cover interest on debt), it doesn’t need less rules around health and safety, we need better engaged government that punishes those in debt who act as a drag on our economy.

      Oh, wait, Key has borrowed us into a huge mess, and lowered taxes on those who are most indebted.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        The role of government is to create a happy content society, and breed hard nosed boardrooms, but Dunne has consistently does the opposite.

        That’s normal for neo-liberal governments. Make it easier on the rich and harder on everyone else.

  9. Rogue Trooper 9

    an “IGT” yarn from across the smoko room table;
    man works entire life as Diesel Mechanic (almost obsessively)
    abrasive personality, few friends and peers
    lonely wife (yes, she told me)
    6 Days a week, on-call, for the man
    last year, both hips replaced; this year spurs will be placed to fuse spine (“won’t make old bones”)
    has diabetes and high blood pressure (investment properties to leave though)
    this man will be 70 years old on the job this year. Oil-fueled Capitalism : Lovin it!

    (and for you soft-cocks running this country? Try being a Diesel Mechanic for two or three decades,
    yet carry on, plenty of limestone chips to soak up the spills)

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Should’ve retired 10 years ago to let a young mechanic in to the workforce

      Maybe no life after work to retire to though?

      • Rogue Trooper 9.1.1

        seems to be the case; PWE and all that millstone, still, refreshing to see the Gen “Z” wising up; Gr8 to see all their tattoos, piercings, and f*ck-u attitudes; can’t stop The Children of The Revolution, just sit back and enjoy the music (wailings). The Hand-brake certainly appears to be cultural (Storm in a tea-cup over Argo ref for example). The magic of “blogs” is that nobody reads them and they are outdated by the time they reach the market shelves.Having seen Lynns FB page, it is encouraging that the Alternative is gettin’ thrown about the joint.Have a good day. Off to read the paper and see what else has blown up; nothing like the power of exponentials.Victoria.
        Be Trailer Parks next; Everclear-“White Trash and proud of It”.(on less than 12K per annum)

        • prism 9.1.1.1

          rogue T
          What do you reckon about living in trailer parks? Some people I’ve heard of, usually retired, enjoy the life. At least you can have a place of your own. There used to be one in South Auckland but the police closed it down because some crims lived there. Now they have to live elsewhere and are probably harder to keep control of. If the goverment is going to turn their backs on the ordinary citizen not getting up to $100 per hour and not even having their low minimum pay keep pace with inflation, perhaps it is time to choose a new paradigm.

          • Rogue Trooper 9.1.1.1.1

            greatfull for any home, personally, and both times i have lived in motor camps i have been more than content; often great community, open space, trees, facilities like pools, wifi, sports courts, barbecues, etc, a variable cosmopolitan international clientele in season, out of season.Many folk retire to them, especially keen fishermen, and sometimes the locations can be beautiful (Higher Ground is always preferable), have even been offered opportunity to add to the vege gardens other residents have already established.
            Downsides; insulation from the elements, space to swing a cat (just joking, cats love me) and too many books :) (and itinerant “temptations” for an old soak like me) ;)

            • prism 9.1.1.1.1.1

              So principal problem is insulation. What about curved shell roofs that sit above the caravan roof on feet that are attached to it and create an insulating air gap and protection from the elements?

      • Draco T Bastard 9.1.2

        Maybe no life after work to retire to though?

        Yep, that was the case with my father. Without a job his life, as far as he was concerned, meant nothing.

  10. Tim 10

    Indeed DtB. It’s an attitude that still prevails tho’. The manner in which people derive their self-esteem these days though is not so much being able to just do an honest day’s work for which they’re fairly rewarded alongside others, but it’s their job title, their positions in relation to others, and their ability to jerk off at various afterwork functions. Many of them roll along thinking they’re invaluable getting an earn in their creatively invented job title positions, right up until the time a ‘restructure’ or an economic downturn sees them without an income. That’s right about the time they realise they shudd cudda wudda not spent so much on the daily latte or bought that second plasma TV for the bedroom.
    Within 6 months or so, they’re getting the dose of reality that increasing numbers of NZers are facing – with mortgages behind, power bills unpaid, and wondering why they ever thought that krismetuk John came across as such an esprayshnull slippery dick.
    It reminds me of the late 80’s. A time when the Class of 87 bought properties with an Evans Bay outlook, invested heavily in CISCO shares, cultivated their Masters of the Universe personas, then had the likes of me trying to convince them that they shouldn’t top themselves or take off overseas when their it all turned to shit.

    How history repeats! They’d deluded themselves that they’d arrived when they’d obtained a mansion, a car that compensated for the size of their penis, their darlin little Johnny was enrolled at St Markwhere they’d ensure their contemporaries would see them dropping the little’un off at 9am every morning, and that they were voting National.
    Didn’t take them long to realise that National wasn’t their best option and nor was it ever going to be, especially when after they’d cashed up and were bankrupt, along would come a Ruth Richardson.
    I’m thinking her husband Steven Joyce is waiting in the wings today.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      The top 1%-2% always do fine in a major depression.

      The bottom 10% poor just get poorer, but that’s what they were anyways.

      The huge section of people in the top half…i.e. the middle class who think they are doing so well, they get totally crushed.

      • Tim 10.1.1

        I agree C.V.. But somehow, this time round, I think things are changing as far as that dynamic goes.
        It’s kind of why the agenda they subscribe to will be their demise. (i.e. – already WITHIN the “1% – there are signs of infighting – the 1% versus the .01%)
        Translated to a NZ context, that huge concrete slab you see around ChCh at every turn – holding up banks (penninsula), whilst the programme of demolition goes on and fuck all is actually built – (the slabs known as “brownlees”) means that the 90 (or 90.99%) realise they’re being royally ripped.
        Even IF this next election were to be lost to those with a social conscience (whether because of apathy, a recognition that the ‘alternative Labour’ party is utterly funked, or still this phenomenon that sees people seeing Jonky as krismetic and an image to “aspire” to) – WHATEVER – the eventual reality of a scorched earth NZ will kick in. IF it has to get to that stage – all the worse for the losers (NActs et al).
        Methmetuks et play – if only that.

        • Tim 10.1.1.1

          No edit function: with a social conscience…. should read withOUT a social conscience

          Hey btw – where Gosman and the other evening’s distractions tonight?

          Do you think maybe they’re hard at Bomber Bradbury’s new venture?.

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.2

          (i.e. – already WITHIN the “1% – there are signs of infighting – the 1% versus the .01%)

          Indeed…the scavenging top 0.01% realise that the bottom 50% have nothing left to give now.

          All the remaining wealth is in the top 10%. The parasitic vampire squid 0.01% is now going to start consuming them.

          And you can see it happening now. Doctors losing power and pay within their own health system. Lawyers losing money and options within our public defenders system. University lecturers on pay freezes unable to get grant funding for anything. Small and medium business owners going to the wall.

          The top 10%, too often Tory voting, are next in the queue.

    • prism 10.2

      Joyces wife is called Suzanne. Best not to get us muddled about such matters.

  11. vto 11

    Peter Dunne is eerily similar to Pete George

    *shiver*

  12. swan 12

    They understand have been lead to believe that it is simply people from overseas that are driving up the price of property,”

    FTFY Russel

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      Supply and demand. There’s a very limited supply of NZ and a hell of a lot of foreigners wanting to buy here. This will, inevitably, push the price of property in NZ up beyond what NZers can afford especially as the governments since the 1980s have been working to lower NZ wages.

      • swan 12.1.1

        Do you have any stats on that? The economist I have heard interviewed on this issue believe that foreign buyers will not be having a significant effect, and in any case it would only be due to restrictions on development on the supply side.

        • Colonial Viper 12.1.1.1

          Great lets listen to the economists, that’s always worked out well for NZ.

  13. newsense 13

    what are the other Labour MPs doing? Isn’t Karol a green?

    • karol 13.1

      I’m foremost a leftie. The last 2 or 3 elections I have party voted Green + Cunliffe for my electorate. Then I moved away for a little while, but am now back in New Lynn electorate, and will most likely vote Green + Cunliffe next year again (unless Mana looks a better option).

      I support Cunliffe. He’s a very good electorate MP, and has front bench abilities.

  14. Cantabrian 14

    Peter Dunne certainly got a free university education – perhaps we should ask him if he still supports the IRA?

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    My Thinks | 30-10
  • Blend with the Bruntletts Group Ride
    While Vancourerites Chris and Melissa Bruntlett are here for their Auckland Conversation talk, Generation Zero, Frocks on Bikes and TransportBlog have organised a slow, family friendly ride around the city centre. The map is below. The ride is designed to be self-directed so...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • Rawshark – Is she Maori or Pakeha?
    Cameron Slater blamed someone for being behind the hacking of his emails and passing them on to Nicky Hager. And then he named someone he thought was Rawshark. John Key says someone told him who Rawshark is but he ain’t telling. @B3nRaching3r is...
    Te Putatara | 30-10
  • Employment law: it’s toasted
    In an early episode of Mad Men, when the company’s going for the Lucky Strike account, sleazebag antihero Don Draper asks the client exactly how cigarettes are made. They talk through the process, mentioning the tobacco is toasted – and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • Owners of the wind
    Thirty-odd years ago in the Kingdom of Denmark lived some brave people who disliked nuclear power and loved renewable energy. Determined to keep their country clean and safe, they began building their own wind turbines. Today, thanks to these passionate...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • TPPA Bulletin #58
    NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION 8 NOVEMBER 2014 Auckland, Hamilton, Raglan, Tauranga, Rotorua, Gisborne, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Levin,Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin,Invercargill. REGIONAL UPDATES Auckland (1:00 pm at Aotea Square): speakers include Robyn Malcolm (Actors Equity), Bunny McDiarmid (Greenpeace), Dayle Takitimu...
    NZ – Not for sale | 30-10
  • Seabed mining: drums in the deep
    Out on the Chatham Rise, the ridge jutting into the waters off Christchurch and extending out beyond the Chathams, Chatham Rock Phosphate has a mining permit and is now seeking EPA approval for its project to mine phosphate for fertiliser,...
    Pundit | 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 again...
    CTU | 30-10
  • An unmanaged conflict
    Katherine Rich is a member of the government-appointed Health Promotion Agency, responsible for (as it says on its website) "inspiring all New Zealanders to lead healthier lives". Katherine Rich is also Chief Executive of the New Zealand Food and Grocery...
    No Right Turn | 30-10
  • Robert Fisk
    Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default...
    No Right Turn | 30-10
  • A stretch
    This morning the Herald revealed that Kim Dotcom had been convicted and fined for dangerous driving in 2009, but had not declared it on his application for residency. Immigration is now talking about deporting him. So, this is what we...
    No Right Turn | 30-10
  • Tauranga port happy to take the money – but not happy to accept responsib...
    Comments from a Port of Tauranga manager about deaths and injuries in their port during a Radio New Zealand interview are unacceptable....
    MUNZ | 30-10
  • New Ebola Toys for Xmas. Yay?
    From the "too soon?" file, here are two oddly successful exercises in niche marketing. First, the molecularly-sort-of-correct ebola plush toy. Apparently it has sold out: And, of course, the sexy ebola nurse outfit: Ebola, as everyone knows, ignores cleavage. And...
    Polity | 30-10
  • Temporary, discriminatory and an admission of Faliure
    The PM says that the legislation his government proposes to pass under urgency allowing for the confiscation of passports of NZ citizens in order to combat the threat of returning foreign fighters will be “tightly focused” on those traveling to...
    Kiwipolitico | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • Experiment-gate update
    Readers may recall the saga around an experimental mailer some Stanford / Dartmouth researchers sent into the state of Montana. In a randomised trial, it provided voters with some added information about two candidates running for a judicial election, and...
    Polity | 30-10
  • Why are our Politicians Auckland Toll Chickens?
    Yesterday both the National Government and Green Party opposed the suggestion to place a toll on Auckland’s roads, but for completely different reasons. The Government opposes it because they see it as a new tax. The Greens because they would...
    Gareth’s World | 29-10
  • The obvious question
    John Key says he knows who the hacker Rawshark is. So, will the police be raiding his home for ten hours and taking all his data, or is that something they only do to enemies of the National Party?...
    No Right Turn | 29-10
  • Guest post: Living with a criminal conviction
    What happens when one moment of bad judgement changes everything anyone ever thinks about you? Mike Jones* used a weapon to defend his girlfriend from an aggressive man at a party seven years ago. He’s still paying for that choice....
    On the Left | 29-10
  • Famous Kiwi Radio Host Invites Rapists To “Call In and Defend Yourselves...
    [This post is now being live-blogged. Please check back periodically for updates. The amazing header image is by Occupy Auckland media team co-ordinator @Redstar309z and features an artistic impression of two alleged #Roastbusters serial rapists - Joseph Levall Parker (left)...
    Spin Bin | 29-10
  • Famous Kiwi Radio Host Invites #Roastbusters Rapists To “Call In and Defe...
    [This post is now being live-blogged. Please check back periodically for updates. The amazing header image is by Occupy Auckland media team co-ordinator @Redstar309z and features an artistic impression of two alleged #Roastbusters serial rapists - Joseph Levall Parker (left)...
    Spin Bin | 29-10
  • James Shaw speaks on the four Bills formerly known as the Accounting Infras...
    The assurance industry is a critical component of our economic framework. The idea that there is a trusted independent watchdog of the public interest underpins investor confidence and ensures financial probity on behalf of our country's leading institutions. New Zealand...
    Greens | 31-10
  • ANZ needs to look after its workers after another super profit
    The ANZ bank needs to acknowledge the super profits it makes are coming at the expense of its workers, the Green Party said today.Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) 2014 full year results show a lift in performance...
    Greens | 31-10
  • 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 | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • National’s “Auckland housing boom” a fizzer
    Falling Auckland consent numbers show the Government’s housing policy is going backwards contrary to wild claims by Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith that we are on the cusp of a massive construction boom, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Local job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Zero tolerance for forestry accidents a must
    The Government must adopt a zero tolerance approach to workplace accidents in the forestry sector to stop people being killed, Labour’s Forestry spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “It is time for the Government and the forestry sector to put an end...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Return to less holidays on the cards?
    John Key needs to lay his cards on the table regarding the Government’s intentions around holiday pay and annual leave entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “A day after National pushed through laws that take away the legal...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Catherine Delahunty Speaks on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill
    Kia ora, Mr Assistant Speaker. He mihi nui ki te Whare Paremata. Welcome to the glorious 19th century, dressed up in the not-so-new flexibility-speak. At the final moment of this bill, let us drop the charade. The Government has a...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Ruataniwha Feds refuse to present a balanced view
    A bid to sell the Ruataniwha water project to Hawkes Bay farmers has turned in to an incredibly one sided affair, says Labours spokesperson on Water Meka Whaitiri.  “It’s being promoted as ‘Ruataniwha it’s now or never’ and it promises...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Worker’s rights dealt severe blow with Bill’s passing
    The passing of the Employment Relations Amendment Bill is another blow to workers' rights in New Zealand, the Green Party said today.This afternoon, National's Employment Relations Amendment Bill passed with the support of Act and United Future."This bill will force...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Barriers to reporting sex crimes must go
    Both the Government and police need to take action to ensure that, in future, sexual abuse victims know they will be taken seriously, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “The young women involved in the Roast Busters case, and...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    Greens | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Kevin Hague questions the Minister of Health on management of Katherine Ric...
    Is he satisfied that all conflicts of interest that arose by the head of Food and Grocery Council Katherine Rich being a member of the Health Promotion Agency were managed in accordance with the provisions of the Crown Entities Act...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Bennett parks numbers on social housing
    Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett admitted today that well over 1000 families have been subsidised through the accommodation supplement to stay in the Ranui campground, somewhere she has previously described as not the right place for children to be growing...
    Labour | 30-10
  • 50,000 sign petition against anti-worker law
    More than 50,000 Kiwis have signed Labour’s petition against the Government’s scrapping of tea break entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “That’s the equivalent of five people signing our petition every minute for a week. It shows the...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Address in Reply Debate – Dr Kennedy Graham on UN Security Council- 2...
    In the Speech from the Throne last week the Prime Minister identified the usual domestic goals for his Government. I counted 17. They are not my subject today. I wish instead to focus on matters beyond our shores. In the...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Key misled public over Jason Ede
    Information contained in a new chapter of the book Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister, that Jason Ede stopped working for the National Party on the night the book Dirty Politics was released, shows Mr Key and senior ministers hid...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Greenpeace report highlights better path for NZ agriculture
    A Greenpeace International report highlights a better way forward for New Zealand agriculture than the GE and chemical mutation technologies supported by Federated Farmers, and the National Government through its research funding packages, the Green Party said today. "This report...
    Greens | 29-10
  • BNZ post record profits while leaving savers vulnerable
    A small part of the $850 million record profit posted by the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today needs to be set aside to protect savers' deposits in the future, said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.Dr Norman was...
    Greens | 29-10
  • RBNZ U-turn shows monetary settings were wrong
    The Reserve Bank's U-turn on interest rates today shows monetary policy settings were wrong and New Zealanders have suffered unnecessarily through the loss of jobs and having to pay higher interest rates, the Green Party said today.Reserve Bank Governor Graeme...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    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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