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More Queensland floods

Written By: - Date published: 4:23 pm, January 28th, 2013 - 58 comments
Categories: climate change, disaster, International - Tags: , ,

As widely reported, Queensland is getting hammered again by bad flooding:

Three dead as record-breaking rain falls

Three people are dead as wild weather continues to batter south-east Queensland and northern New South Wales, authorities say.

The region is struggling with an unfolding weather disaster as flood waters force more evacuations and fierce winds rip off roofs and cut power and phone lines. Floodwaters are threatening communities in both states with over 200,000 people in south-east Queensland without power and floodwaters isolating 1300 people across the border in New South Wales. …

The Queensland Premier says the flooding will not be as severe as it was in 2011, but is urging people at risk in Brisbane and Ipswich to take action. The Brisbane river will peak tonight with 5000 homes and businesses expected to inundated by floodwaters. …

Many of us probably know people in the area, and I’m sure our thoughts are with all those affected.

Over the next few decades more and more countries are going to be facing a difficult question. At what point do repeated extreme weather events make previously settled regions untenable? When such regions are abandoned, what happens next? (For a different reason Christchurch has provided something of an early case study, albeit on a small scale). We have created a different world…

58 comments on “More Queensland floods”

  1. Peter 1

    That’s a very good question. I’d say that given the lack of ability by democratic governments to lead on this one (because of the political ramifications of forcing people to shift), this will drag on and on until the insurance companies finally join the dots and make it too costly to insure in certain locations for most people.

    Local governments may also try, but at best, I think all they can do is prevent new buildings and grandfather out the existing ones. The revenue gained from rates and any subsequent flow on effects to existing investment may be too much for anyone to take a lead on it.

    In other words, for affected areas, a long, slow, ragged decline.

    • Afewknowthetruth 1.1

      Local government is too keen to obtain money from building permits to even think about ANYTHING long term.

  2. Andy-Roo 2

    People can live in some pretty extreme environments, but most people will chose not to – at least for as long as they can.

    So I think a linked question is “how long do we expect populations to remain mobile enough for uping stakes to be an option?”

    The world currently does a piss poor job of looking after economic refugees anyway.

    Which leads to another question “How long do we expect people who occupy desireable real estate to keep on wanting to accomodate the hopes, needs and aspirations of those who don’t?”

  3. CV - Real Labour 3

    In Queensland there were several examples of property developers and local councils going ahead with real estate developments in high risk areas – known flood plains and so on.

    And its pretty hard for a house buyer 20 years down the track to find out if a property they are looking at is affected by something like that, especially as many of the parties responsible have long moved on – with their profits.

    At what point do repeated extreme weather events make previously settled regions untenable?

    Good question. The other side of the coin is that more people are going to end up living with increased accomodation insecurity, especially if they can’t afford to relocate (or a debt-ridden government can’t afford to help them relocate). As you say, we see examples of this in Christchurch now, where some people would like to move out but can’t for financial/property value/insurance payout reasons, and they can’t afford to buy a replacement house with yet another mortgage to service anywhere else.

    edit – I see andyroo has touched on similar issues.

    • Pascal's bookie 3.1

      What we need to do is relax the RMA and get rid of all the red tape mate. Let the developers rip son. No worries.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 3.2

      Not so, anybody can look up current flood plain maps. 20 years down the track doesnt change most flood levels, if anything the 50 yr events may be occuring more often due to climate change and upper catchment development

  4. Jenny 4

    Another unbearable heat-wave, a couple more unprecedented flooding disasters, and New Zealand will face a flood of climate refugees from Australia.

    The trickle has begun. Australian immigrants report the feeling of liberation about being able to water their garden, or wash their cars without massive a guilt trip from their neighbors, or being visited upon by the authorities. If Australian climatic conditions get much worse, this trickle will become a flood.

    What can we do?

    The most important thing we can do, is set an example.

    Australia is our closest friend and nearest neighbor. It is also the number 1, biggest coal exporter in the world.

    Coal is the number 1 leading cause of AGW in the world.

    New Zealand needs to ban all coal exports as an example.

    Starting this parliamentary term, the Green Party need to introduce into parliament a private member’s bill calling for the banning of all coal exports.

    Will it pass?

    No

    But it will tell us, depending how they vote, on where the Labour Party stand on Climate Change.

    How will they vote?

    Will Labour vote with the ACT and National Parties and against the planet?

    Or will they vote with their future possible coalition partner?

    This is a crucial test on what we could expect from a Labour/Green coalition government.

    No action from either, will inform us all that it will be Business As Usual for the climate under a Labour led Green Party Coal-tion.

    • CV - Real Labour 4.1

      I agree with banning all coal exports, but mainly because I think they should be reserved for NZ use.

      • Jenny 4.1.1

        I have been told by a number of Green Party embers and supporters, that it is Green Party policy to make New Zealand completely coal free by 2030. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to confirm this by going to their website.

        Whatever, true or not, grass roots Green Party members believe they have such a policy.

        Even if they do, it can only be an “aspirational” policy in the John Key meaning of the word.

        The Green Party have no program for getting from where we are now to completely coal free.

        So what I have suggested is just a first step towards that ultimate goal.

        So sorry CV-RL no coal, for local NZ use as well.

        • Jenny 4.1.1.1

          Damn. The M key is sticking. For embers read members.

          • Jenny 4.1.1.1.1

            Though thinking about it, ‘embers’ adds a certain ironic touch.

            • Jenny 4.1.1.1.1.1

              On further reflection that may be a bit harsh. I have the deepest respect for the dedication and sincerity of the many Green Party members I have met, they have built an impressive organisation.

              The huge work that they have done over the successful asset sales referendum petition is a testament to that dedication and determination.

              My concern is that like many third parties the Greens will not survive their first brush with government. I just hope that if the Green Party collapse, which is likely on their present trajectory, that all their supporters are not disillusioned, or disheartened by the experience, and lost from the struggle against climate change.

            • Jenny 4.1.1.1.1.2

              On further reflection that may be a bit harsh. I have the deepest respect for the dedication and sincerity of the many Green Party members I have met, they have built an impressive organisation.

              The huge amount of unpaid and thankless work that they have put in to make the asset sales referendum petition a success is a testament to that dedication and determination.

              My concern, is that like many third parties, the Greens will not survive their first brush with government. I just hope that if the Green Party do collapse, which in my opinion, is likely on their present trajectory, that all their supporters are not disillusioned, or disheartened by the experience, and lost from the struggle against climate change.

        • CV - Real Labour 4.1.1.2

          NZ coal is going to be used for another 200 years Jenny. Any ban on coal activity which does pass into legislation will be short lived. One or two government terms at most.

          • bad12 4.1.1.2.1

            Aha and any political party that bans it will probably be just as short lived, advocating political suicide by the Green Party would seem to be Jenny’s modus…

            • Jenny 4.1.1.2.1.1

              ‘The man who may be the wrecker of the Tory Party…..was certainly
              saviour of the civilised world’

              Henry Channon Life long Tory MP and friend of Nevil Chamberlain and political enemy of Winstone Churchill, 9 April, 1952.

              • bad12

                That’s a little delusional don’t you think, if the worst case scenario were to occur in the next 200 years, and, given the inaction of the major polluters that seems a given, there is in fact nothing in Gods blue little world the Green Party can do that will markedly materially alter that,

                Of course if doom is to be the consequences then once the full manifestation of such doom has been visited upon us, the Planet Earth may then begin to heal it’self…

          • Jenny 4.1.1.2.2

            In 200 years, if coal is still being burnt, it will be to cremate the mountains of bodies. As most of the world’s surface will be uninhabitable.

            • CV - Real Labour 4.1.1.2.2.1

              So? Politicans haven’t got the power to change that.

              • Jenny

                A strange thing for a Labour Party activist to say.

                • CV - Real Labour

                  I’ve had this conversation with you before. Politicians are followers not leaders. No politician is going to propose destroying thousands of jobs and eliminating hundreds of millions in GDP unless they can see clear support for their bigger plan from influential sectors of society.

          • Jenny 4.1.1.2.3

            Any ban on coal activity which does pass into legislation will be short lived. One or two government terms at most.

            CV – Real Labour

            That is what they said about the anti-nuclear legislation. And here we are, despite many threats and assaults on it by conservative politicians of various parties and governments over the decades. This legislation still stands proud and undefeated.

            I expect the same for any world first ban on coal.

            I also expect as the affects of climate change starts to take hold, the populations of other countries will be demanding the same bans in their countries.

            • CV - Real Labour 4.1.1.2.3.1

              Anti-nuclear legislation? You do realise that no legislation against nuclear power was passed in NZ don’t you, just legislation against nuclear weapons?

              By the way, eliminating the burning of oil in NZ will make two million people walk to work every day. Banning nuclear weapons didn’t have that kind of day to day impact on people’s lives.

              • Jenny

                I was talking about coal you cloth head. Are you suffering from some sort of blind spot,or what?

                • Jenny

                  PS. New Zealand produces 0.2% of the world’s green house gas emissions. (This 0.2% total includes from agriculture as well, which is this country’s biggest source of emissions.) If CV-RL as you suggest New Zealand banned all oil and even all agricultural emissions it would have negligible quantitive effect on the world total.

                  Our contribution to stopping climate change will never be quantitive. It can only be qualitative.

                  The single most practical thing we can do is put a total ban on coal. New Zealand is not reliant on coal it is only a small part of energy supply. And I have been informed by the knowledgeable experts that there are a number of suitable substitutes available for industry etc.

                  But you may ask, why is coal important?

                  Globally it is different, coal is the single biggest cause of CO2 emissionson a global scale. 1tonne of coal when burnt releases roughly 2.8tonnes of CO2, the highest of any fossil fuel. (CO2, 1 carbon atom to 2 oxygen atoms and coal is almost pure carbon)

                  If New Zealand can show that we can do without coal then other countries can to.

                  The top scientist in the country and advisor to the Prime Minister Professor Sir Peter Gluckman. Has said and it. and it is on the government website, that the greatest contribution New Zealand can make to halting global climate change is by setting an example.

                  This is the example we need to set and can set.

                  Gluckman also said we need to act now.

                  Our brothers and sisters in Australia suffering from the extreme climatic conditions due to all the extra energy in the system will be the first to sit up and take notice. And you can bet on it. (Aussies love a good bet).

                  And don’t forget. Australia is the world’s biggest exporter of coal.

                  We here in little New Zealand by our exampl,e have a chance to stop this major source of CO2 pollution.

                • CV - Real Labour

                  I was talking about coal you cloth head. Are you suffering from some sort of blind spot,or what?

                  Uh…you were the one who mentioned the anti-nuclear legislation first in your comment 4.1.1.2.3

                  Coal use in tonnes is going to expand at a massive rate over the next 10 years, just as it has in the last 10. Not approving of it. I’m just sayin’ that’s all.

                  • Jenny

                    Coal use in tonnes is going to expand at a massive rate over the next 10 years, just as it has in the last 10. Not approving of it. I’m just sayin’ that’s all.

                    CV – Real Labour

                    Is that official Labour Party policy, or just wishful thinking from you personally?

                    • CV - Real Labour

                      4.9M short tons of coal produced in 2000, rising to 8.0M short tons of coal produced in 2010.

                      In other words, an increase in coal production of 310,000 short tons per year between 2000 and 2010.

                      By 2020 the figure may be up to around 11.0M short tons of coal produced per year, a 300% increase in coal production from 2000.

                      Yes, it will likely destroy the planet’s ecosystems as we know it.

                      http://www.indexmundi.com/energy.aspx?product=coal&graph=production

                    • Jenny

                      You didn’t answer the question.

                      But I suppose since the figures you provided showing a huge expansion in coal production, happened during a Labour administration you don’t have to.

                      No wonder the Green Party in trying to to seek an accommodation with the Labour Party must forget about any mention of addressing climate change or suggest measures to curtail CO2 emissions. This is clearly off the table.

                    • Jenny

                      Green Party back-peddling on climate change is the necessary preparation required, if the Greens are serious about becoming part of an administration that increases CO2 emissions.

                      http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2012/12/18-1

                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Escarpment_Mine_Project

    • Afewknowthetruth 4.2

      Good point.

      You can be sure that no party will touch the issue of dealing with climate change because to do so effectively would require integrity. None of the leaders of any major political parties have any.

      So the meltdown of the planet will continue, whoever is in power.

      They’ll just keep ignoring the issue (along with Peak Oil, overpopulation, deforestation, overfishing, etc.) till they can’t. And they’ll just keep lying to the general public.

      • Jenny 4.2.1

        Not if I can help it.

        • the Al1en 4.2.1.1

          “Not if I can help it.”

          Well said.

          The issue of coal is a really prickly one for Labour. All the historical connections between the unions and the party etcetera.
          If they replace the lost jobs with new, equally well paid jobs, there’s no issue.
          Too simple?

  5. Bill 6

    At what point do repeated extreme weather events or other natural events make previously settled regions untenable?

    (added the bold to broaden the scope)

    People will be more or less left to face whatever natural and market consequences there might be with no adequate government backed rebuild or support. This is already happening in developed countries – New Orleans, New Jersey, Christchurch…

    And when those people have had enough and drift away…then yeah, we might say natural events have made settlement untenable.

    Of course the people in question might be poor people or live in some place like Haiti or Bangladesh where there really is nowhere else to go…

    But that’s okay, because they can always be chastised for ‘hanging on in there’ in the event of ‘a second sitting’ causing more damage to any remaining physical infrastucture and more injuries and death.

  6. r0b 7

    Reminds me – I meant to post on this some time:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/jan/14/rain-square-flooding

    Note the vested interests holding back attempts to prepare…

  7. Afewknowthetruth 8

    It would be interesting to find out how much money ‘big coal Australia’ has pumped into climate change denial over the past decade or so. We do know that the corporations that control most of the media have been very selective in what they promote…. giving far more space to climate change denial than proper scientific analysis.

    Australia is now paying the price. And the price is going to keep rising -probably exponentially, now that positive feedbacks have been triggered.

    As I have said many times, as long as corporations and money-lenders control this planet everything that matters is bound to get rapidly worse.

  8. Afewknowthetruth 9

    Actually, it won’t be flooding that will finish off Australia; it will be extremely high temperatures.

    The ‘plan’ seems to be for Australia to be the first nation to achieve a daily maximum of 60oC in the shade in a major metropolitan district. At the moment they are only achieving 42 to 48oC. Another decade of unrestrained emissions should do the job (as well as completely buggering ocean chemistry.).

    • Murray Olsen 9.1

      My guess would be floods and fires. Putting more heat into the system makes extreme events happen more often. On the Eastern Seaboard of Australia, a flood event of this magnitude every couple of years would make many places economically unviable long before the temperatures got as high as you suggest. Moving inland just adds to the fire risk, without diminishing the flood problem much at all.
      A lot of Brisbane is built on flood plains, for example, so it will continue to flood unless something drastic is done, such as giving the catchment a few other exits to the sea. This would entail the expropriation of a huge amount of property and the excavation of huge canals, which I can’t see happening.
      If I’m still around, it will be interesting to see how much flooding and burning Queenslanders can handle before they start moving en masse. In 2011, the insurance companies were already doing everything they could to not pay out. If it happens every couple of years, I can’t see that situation improving.

  9. Draco T Bastard 10

    When such regions are abandoned, what happens next?

    And what happens to the millions and billions of people affected?

    We certainly can’t fit them here.

  10. Afewknowthetruth 11

    By the way, capitalism LOVES ‘natural’ disasters because they create opportunities for profiteering that were not previously there. And in the fucked up economic system we are locked into, replacing damaged infrastructure adds to GDP, which is regarded as good for the economy. So the more disasters there are, the better the employment prospects and the higher the GDP.

    No wonder the economic system is starting to collapse, along with the environment.

  11. Jenny 12

    This is what will kill your grandchildren

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal

    Coal is the largest source of energy for the generation of electricity worldwide, as well as one of the largest worldwide anthropogenic sources of carbon dioxide releases

    the world top coal producer is China,[5] in 2011 China produced 3,520 millions of tonnes of coal – 49.5% of 7,695 millions tonnes world coal production. In 2011 other large producers were United States (993 millions tonnes), India (589), European Union (576) and Australia (416).[5]

    In 2010 largest exporters were Australia with 328 million tonnes (27.1% of world coal export) and Indonesia with 316 millions tonnes (26.1%),[6] while largest importers were Japan with 207 million tonnes (17.5% of world coal import), China with 195 million tonnes (16.6%) and South Korea with 126 million tonnes (10.7%).[7]

    Source: wikipedia

    • CV - Real Labour 12.1

      So you stop NZ and Australia’s coal industries completely, and you achieve a 6% reduction in global coal mining. I guess that’s something.

      • Jenny 12.1.1

        Think qualitative, not quantitive.

        The biggest importer of coal is Japan.

        How would Japan react if coal imports were cut off, or even just constrained?

        It would create a national emergency.

        Remember, already a quarter of Japan’s usual generating capacity, has been seriously restricted by the Fukushima disaster and many nuclear plants are still not on line.

        If the crisis was big enough the Japanese would be forced to switch their massive technological and manufacturing capacity from cars and consumer goods to wind turbines.

        This would launch a whole new branch of industry almost overnight.

        This would rapidly lower the cost per unit, making wind power the cheapest form of electrical generation in the world opening up massive international export market. That the Japanese being first would be best poised to take advantage of.

        Can’t be done. It has been done. In 1946 the american car industry stopped producing cars. For the rest of the war a grand total of 34 private automobiles were manufactured in mainland USA. All the big motor company assembly lines were either switched to aircraft manufacture, or tanks and other weapons, almost overnight.

        The thing is CV-RL, not one country yet has made any significant start on the necessary changes. Once started, all sorts of possibilities start presenting themselves.

        • CV - Real Labour 12.1.1.1

          How would Japan react if coal imports were cut off, or even just constrained?

          You have to be fucking kidding.

          The last time someone tried to do this to Japan, millions of people in Asia and the Pacific died, including thousands of New Zealanders and Australians.

          In 1946 the american car industry stopped producing cars. For the rest of the war a grand total of 34 private automobiles were manufactured in mainland USA.

          Source plz.

          • Jenny 12.1.1.1.1

            Grow up.

            In a crisis; Wind Power Offers Too Much To Ignore

            Anti-wind campaigners frequently make claims about the shortcomings of wind power. Their main complaints are that the turbines are so inefficient that they actually increase carbon dioxide emissions, and so unreliable that they require constant backup from conventional coal and gas-fired stations.

            If correct, these claims would be devastating to wind power. But they are not.

            New Scientist

            • CV - Real Labour 12.1.1.1.1.1

              Grow up? You’re suggesting actions which would be taken as an act of War and you’re asking me to “grow up”?

              You really have no idea of the geopolitical consequences of what you are suggesting, do you? Do you have any idea of the asia-pacific context of World War 2? At all? (Since you brought the era up as such a shining example).

              China and Japan are today launching military jets at each other over a few billion barrels of oil and gas supposedly around the Senkaku Islands. Anything along the lines of what you suggest and you would plunge the region into war.

              Regardless of the efficiency of your fucking windmills.

            • Jenny 12.1.1.1.1.2

              Sorry it’s late, maybe a less intemperate response is called for.

              This is not 1945 and modern democratic Japan doesn’t have the massive military war machine possessed by the Imperial Japanese fascist state. Even if the Japanese state did have such a war machine I don’t think the Japanese people have the appetite for using it in the manner you suggest.

              BAU however, which you are determined to support, will ensure that the wars you talk about, will occur when matters get really desperate.

    • >kill your grandchildren< The kids are already dead
      We are 30 years behind the effects of what we have done already.
      At this point in our on going extinction it doesn't matter what we do, stopping all human activity is like trying to close the portholes in first class to stop the titanic from sinking.
      Like a terminal cancer patient going vegetarian for the last month of their lives, ya might 'feel' like you are dong good, but as far as saving the day, forget it.
      Yet the maternity factory keeps pumping out victims…………………………………..
      We are no more a sentient life form than the scum under the toilet rim. lol

      Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (late 2007): 1 C by 2100

      Hadley Centre for Meteorological Research (late 2008): 2 C by 2100

      United Nations Environment Programme (mid 2009): 3.5 C by 2100

      Hadley Centre for Meteorological Research (October 2009): 4 C by 2060

      Global Carbon Project, Copenhagen Diagnosis (November 2009): 6 C, 7 C by 2100

      International Energy Agency (November 2010): 3.5 C by 2035 2100

      United Nations Environment Programme (December 2010): up to 5 C by 2050

      Positive feedbacks

      Methane hydrates are bubbling out the Arctic Ocean (Science, March 2010)

      Warm Atlantic water is defrosting the Arctic as it shoots through the Fram Strait (Science, January 2011)

      Siberian methane vents have increased in size from less than a meter across in the summer of 2010 to about a kilometer across in 2011 (Tellus, February 2011)

      Drought in the Amazon triggered the release of more carbon than the United States in 2010 (Science, February 2011)

      Peat in the world’s boreal forests is decomposing at an astonishing rate (Nature Communications, November 2011)

      Methane is being released from the Antarctic, too (Nature, August 2012)

      Russian forest and bog fires are growing (NASA, August 2012)

      Cracking of glaciers accelerates in the presence of increased carbon dioxide (Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, October 2012)

      Arctic drilling was fast-tracked by the Obama administration during the summer of 2012

      We are all fucked http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sdn3O6aaMNc

  12. Not good when hear about floods

  13. JonL 14

    Robert Atack is on the money.
    But, it’s all bad news, and in this “breads and circuses” world, it’s all tooo ghastly to contemplate, so we’ll just keep on keeping on, the same as always, and pretend it isn’t happening, until the bushfire burns us out of house and home, the floods finally wash away the infrastructure, the increasingly violent storms shred the locale, the droughts dessicate the neighbourhoods and hordes of people start roaming the planet, looking for somewhere to live, and food to eat.

    But then, the wealthy will have the armed forces and police forces to “keep them all at bay”….

    I’m all right Jack, I’ll be dead by then!

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    Scene IBill English bounces out of his Beehive bed with a surplus of energy, yet feeling rather lacklustre can only pour himself a glass of milk and drag himself to the balcony looking out over central Wellington. He glances over at...
    Pundit
  • Ten best paid bosses in tertiary education
    And their lowest paid colleagues Tertiary Update Vol 17 No 44 Last week the State Services Commission announced the total remuneration for chief executives and vice-chancellors at public tertiary education institutions. Prof Stuart McCutcheon earned at least $660,000. That is...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten most popular stories of 2014
    This Tertiary Update’s top ten most read stories for the year included, at number ten, the massive job cuts at Manukau Institute of Technology and at number two the petition opposing those job cuts. Two more of our most read...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten branches that recruited the most new TEU members
    Waikato Institute of Technology – of 142 members in September 41 joined in the last 12 months = 28.9 percent Tai Poutini Polytechnic – of 54 members in September 14 joined in the last 12 months = 25.9 percent NorthTec...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten rights the government will take away next year
    …but that TEU plans to protect Next year several new laws will come into force that will remove some of your rights. It is more important than ever that you protect your rights by being active in a strong union...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten Te Kaupapa Whaioranga wishes for the New Year
    For the tertiary education worker who has already got a partridge in a pear tree, and a pair of socks, here are other ten things they’ll be looking for. Sadly you will need to campaign for them rather than be gifted...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten of our favourite TEU photos for the year
    ...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • City Centre Priority Cycle Routes
    An update to the Auckland City Centre Advisory Board (page 25) provides some new information about improvements to cycling planned for the CBD and include some artist impressions of just what they might look like – although unfortunately because it comes from a...
    Transport Blog
  • TISA text: US threat to privacy, civil rights, data security
    Press Release – AFTINET Leaked US proposals in the Trade in the secret Services (TISA) negotiations include rules that would threaten privacy and civil rights protections for digital personal data Dr Patricia Ranald, Coordinator of the Australian Fair Trade and...
    Its our future
  • 2014 will be the hottest year on record
    For those of us fixated on whether 2014 will be the hottest year on record, the results are in. At least, we know enough that we can make the call. According the global data from NOAA, 2014 will be the...
    Skeptical Science
  • Leaked TISA text exposes US threat to privacy, data security
    Press Release – Professor Jane Kelsey The US is demanding that New Zealand and other countries accept sweeping rules that would override privacy protections for digitised personal and other data, according to Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland.17...
    Its our future
  • Males only?
    Like Vaughan Rowsell I get asked to facilitate or be on panels and speak at events a fair bit. Actually not quite like Vaughan – he’s incredibly popular, and for good reason. Vaughan’s publicly announced that he will not accept...
    Lance Wiggs
  • An OTL milestone
    I have no idea how this happened, but this is the 100th post on On The Left! Things are probably going to slow down a bit around here over the holiday break, but thanks to all our bloggers and readers...
    On the Left
  • It’s nearly Foodmass
    Christmas is coming. The halls are decked with boughs of holly (plastic), and decorated with snow (artificial). Tips for Christmas (stress-free) have been appearing since November. Children are over-excited and desperate shoppers are looking for the perfect presents for people...
    Pundit
  • No justice in the UK
    Four years ago, G4S guards killed Jimmy Mubenga by restraining him inappropriately during a deportation - effectively asphyixiating him. But today, a British jury refused to convict them:Three private security guards who restrained the Angolan deportee Jimmy Mubenga have been...
    No Right Turn
  • John Key wants arbitrary detention
    That's the only conclusion that can be drawn from his comments today about the need to lower the threshold for detention:Prime Minister John Key said the Sydney siege gunman highlighted the conundrum for authorities over protecting citizens against potential terrorism...
    No Right Turn
  • Futility: Educating an IED
    Through this year, I have sadly been lured into spending energy trying to teach Martyn Bradbury about modern political science, and what it means for modern politics. He appeared misinformed about what polls are and how they work, so I...
    Polity
  • The OIA Review
    Yesterday, the Ombudsman announced that they had begun their review of OIA compliance. They'll be looking closely at 12 central government agencies, and surveying 63 more, as well as all 27 Ministerial offices. They'll also be soliciting submissions from the...
    No Right Turn
  • Biosecurity it’s everyone’s responsibility
    Biosecurity costs New Zealand millions of dollars in attempting pest eradication and much more in ongoing management of pests in farming, horticulture, beekeeping and conservation, as well as in our own backyards and recreation areas. More work must happen at...
    frogblog
  • Equality, Efficiency and Economic Theory (Social Journal Europe)
    Dani RodrikIn the pantheon of economic theories, the tradeoff between equality and efficiency used to occupy an exalted position. The American economist Arthur Okun, whose classic work on the topic is called Equality and Efficiency: The Big Tradeoff, believed that public...
    the Irascible Curmudgeon
  • New Fisk
    Peshawar school attack: Massacre of the innocents born of ambivalence towards Taliban...
    No Right Turn
  • How we pay for a universal basic income – Whiteboard Wednesday.
    Lots of people like the idea of an Unconditional Basic Income (UBI), but can we afford it as a nation? In this Whiteboard Wednesday Geoff looks at the three parts of the Big Kahuna package – Unconditional Basic Income, Flat...
    Gareth’s World
  • This will go down well
    Back in September, Mexican police arrested a group of 43 student teachers who had been travelling to Iguala for a protest against the local government. They handed them over to a local drug gang, who murdered them. Since the massacre,...
    No Right Turn
  • AT Metro Launched
    Last week we mentioned about how Auckland Transport was launching a new PT brand. That occurred yesterday and as well as new look buses, they have also launched a new brand for their public transport operations – AT Metro. Auckland Transport has...
    Transport Blog
  • Whales, dolphins, and ‘gunshots’
    I've just returned from seven days on board SV Vega as part of a small team monitoring the impacts of seismic testing on marine mammals off the west coast of Northland. No research has been done in this area, so...
    Greenpeace NZ blog
  • Meat workers need Jobs that Count
    The CTU is supporting todays Meat Workers Union campaign to combat insecure work in a core New Zealand export industry. Photo:  ...
    CTU
  • 2014: A Venture Capital Odyssey
    Fresh off the wire from Hong Kong, from your friends and mine at io9: Hong Kong based venture capital firm Deep Knowledge Ventures (DKV) has appointed a machine learning program to its board. Called VITAL, it's an "equal member" that...
    Polity
  • Buzzfeed takes the Herald
    Here's a Herald article this week, titled (I kid you not): 20 somewhat horrible things I do to my kids that I don't feel guilty about [Facepalm] I want the Herald to be good. I really do. I know some...
    Polity
  • Govt spend on transport out of step with reality
    The National Government is planning to allocate ever increasing amounts of taxpayer funding to build expensive new motorways despite record numbers of New Zealanders flocking to buses and trains, said the Green Party. The Government released its Government Policy Statement...
    Greens
  • Solar homes stymied by Govt inaction
    Government inaction is allowing the big power companies to discourage the nascent solar power sector, the Green Party said today. Green Party MP Gareth Hughes launched a petition today calling on the Government to empower the Electricity Authority to act...
    Greens
  • Foreign buyers for iconic island must add value
    Labour will look very closely at any Overseas Investment Office application to purchase Pakatoa Island if it is not bought by a Kiwi, says Labour’s Land information Spokesperson Stuart Nash. “Pakatoa is an iconic island in the middle of Hauraki...
    Labour
  • Way opening for April Sun in Cuba
    The United States of America’s President’s historic announcement yesterday to restore diplomatic ties with Cuba should be applauded by the New Zealand Government. The announcement marks a turning point in more than five decades of hostility between the two countries...
    Greens
  • Minister ducking for cover over ‘Diplomat Case’
    Apparently the Ministerial Inquiry into what now seems to be being referred to as ‘The Diplomat Case’ ( I have a few other names for it) has been completed and is in front of Foreign Affairs Minister McCully. Initial Reports seem to...
    Greens
  • Energy users need answers on Vector share plans
    Energy Minister Simon Bridges needs to stop ducking for cover about whether or not the Government will support plans to nationalise and then privatise $2.1 billion of shares in the Auckland Electricity Consumer Trust, Labour's Energy spokesperson Stuart Nash says. “It...
    Labour
  • Turning up the heat on working conditions
    A “Jobs That Count” campaign has the full support of Labour, the party’s Labour Relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. Organised by the Meat Workers Union, the campaign aims to put the spotlight on job insecurity in the meat processing industry....
    Labour
  • Biosecurity it’s everyone’s responsibility
    Biosecurity costs New Zealand millions of dollars in attempting pest eradication and much more in ongoing management of pests in farming, horticulture, beekeeping and conservation, as well as in our own backyards and recreation areas. More work must happen at...
    Greens
  • Failure to diversify puts prosperity at risk
    Beyond the news that a long-promised surplus is unlikely, further embarrassment is hidden in the fine print of the half year economic and fiscal update, Labour says. "National’s failure to rebalance the economy is further exposed in projections from its...
    Labour
  • Ombudsman probe targets Ministerial integrity
    John Key is on notice that the entrenched cynical and manipulative abuse of official information requests by his Government will no longer be tolerated, Labour’s Open Government spokesperson Clare Curran says. “The announcement by the Ombudsman of a wide-ranging review...
    Labour
  • Bill English’s face is redder than his books
    The Government owes New Zealanders an apology for failing to deliver the surplus it spent four years and two election campaigns promising, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Bill English’s face is redder than the Crown accounts. This is the...
    Labour
  • Is the Health Minister accountable to the public? He doesn’t seem to thin...
    Lately I’ve been involved in a sort of farcical standoff with the Health Minister, who seems to be under the illusion that I have no right to ask questions about conflicts involving Health Promotion Agency Board member Katherine Rich, and...
    Greens
  • Irresponsible tax cuts lead to seventh successive deficit
    National's borrowing to pay for cutting the top tax rate was irresponsible and will likely lead to a seventh successive deficit, the Green Party said today. Treasury have forecast a $572 million deficit this year in its Half Year Economic...
    Greens
  • Minister closes down dissent on climate change
    Minister closes down dissent on climate change In a threatening letter to Maori leaders, Minister for Climate Change Tim Groser says he will be requiring future international delegations to toe the party line, Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods says. “In...
    Labour
  • Heartfelt sympathy for Sydneysiders
    The Labour Party has offered its heartfelt sympathy to the people of Sydney after the hostage situation in the city, says Labour’s Acting leader Grant Robertson.  “Our thoughts are with all those who went through this horrific and traumatic experience....
    Labour
  • Farewell at Phillipstown
    Last Wednesday, I attended the farewell for Tony Simpson, Principal of Phillipstown School. It was a very emotional event where many of us in the large crowd shed tears. Bagpipes and tiny tamariki performing kapahaka brought the house down and...
    Greens
  • The CIA Torture Report
    Earlier this week, the United States Select Committee on Intelligence released the Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Program.  The report, which was five years in the making, looked into the CIA’s interrogation techniques from 2001...
    Greens
  • Haere Rā 2014
    We’ve almost reached the end of the Parliamentary year so I wanted to take a moment to reflect on some of my highlights of the term in this blog post. It’s been an absolutely hectic year juggling an election campaign...
    Greens
  • Labour applauds High Court decision on Ruataniwha
    Today’s decision by the High Court on the Ruataniwha scheme is a victory for NewZealand’s environmental groups, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson RuthDyson....
    Labour
  • A welfare system for the 21st Century
    Today Child Poverty Action Group released a background paper on ‘The complexities of ‘relationship’ in the welfare system and the consequences for children.‘ The report includes 16 recommendations to modernise our welfare system which is no longer fit for the...
    Greens
  • Welfare system out of date and out of touch
    A new Child Poverty Action Group report released today highlights another example of how our outmoded social welfare system is harming kids, says Labour’s Social Development Spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni.  “The complexities of how a ‘relationship’ is defined in the welfare...
    Labour
  • NZ should formally recognise Palestine
    New Zealand should follow the lead of Sweden, and now recognise Palestine as a separate state On 30 October, Sweden’s new government formally recognised the state of Palestine, only the second Western country to do so, after Iceland. Down here...
    Greens
  • James Shaw’s adjournment speech on behalf of the Green Party
    It is a great honour for me to speak on behalf of the Green Party in this adjournment debate. I thank my colleagues for the privilege. I became a MP only 12 weeks ago, a period of time that seems...
    Greens
  • Time to end legalised cruelty of factory farms
    We can ensure that animals are kept in safe and ethical conditions. Claims of economic impact and practicality as justification for animal cruelty just don't stack up.Use our easy e-letter to write to the Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy...
    Greens
  • Government can’t rely on geothermal to grow itself
    While Electricity Authority figures showing geothermal has risen from the fourth to the second highest source of power generation are a promising sign for a geothermal renaissance, there can be no cause for complacency, Labour’s Energy spokesperson Stuart Nash says....
    Labour
  • Big bickies for bosses despite subpar performance
    While public service workers are experiencing Grinch-like wage increases state sector bosses have pocketed early Christmas presents in the form of whopper pay hikes, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “Unbelievably State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie got an additional...
    Labour
  • Consent should come before research grants for phosphate mining
      The Government’s decision to make a grant by Callaghan Innovation to Chatham Rock Phosphate is highly questionable, says Labour’s Science spokesperson David Cunliffe.  “The fact is that the company still has to get a marine consent to mine the Chatham...
    Labour
  • A Tale of Two Farms
    Pig farming has yet again been thrust into the public view with two programmes this week on Campbell Live highlighting the very different conditions for pigs on two very different farms. The first programme exposed the awful conditions on a...
    Greens
  • Dirty Dairy Accord failing to clean up rivers
    The first monitoring report of the Sustainable Dairying Water Accord fails to show progress on cleaning up our rivers since the Accord was introduced, the Green Party said today. The Accord's targets for stock exclusion are weaker than the previous...
    Greens
  • The Indignant Kiwi: Why we need to do more to protect our national bird
    A kiwi, about to be released into the wild, was first introduced to Prime Minister John Key and German Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel on her recent visit to New Zealand. By all reports, Dr Merkel was delighted to meet the rather indignant...
    Greens
  • Conflicted interests and health promotion; my opinion.
    As it happens, I know quite a bit about health promotion. It was an area I worked in prior to becoming an MP. What differentiates health promotion from the strict biomedical model, or from health education, for example, is its...
    Greens
  • Transparency on foreign buyers register needed
    News that Overseas Investment Office officials have been working on a register of foreign buyers of New Zealand homes is a welcome surprise, but Land Information Minister Louise Upston now needs to be clear on the details of the project,...
    Labour
  • National moves on state house sell off
    The Labour Party understands the Government has decided to move ahead with a mass sell-off of state houses. Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says he has been told by sources that Cabinet agreed the plan for their sell-off this week....
    Labour
  • Back-down on expert teacher plan welcomed
    News that the Government has backed down and returned to the drawing board on its flagship ‘expert teacher’ policy will come as a welcome Christmas present to schools and teachers, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Teachers throughout New Zealand...
    Labour
  • John Key can’t duck the blame for internet and phone price increases
    Shareholders are winning out over Kiwi households in the latest episode of the long-running fiasco on copper network phone and internet prices, Labour ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said today. “As predicted last week hundreds of thousands of Kiwi households now...
    Labour
  • An astounding disregard for Māori Affairs
    I have sat on the Māori Affairs Select Committee for most of the last 12 years. I love the committee, its work, its constituency and I especially love how it works differently than other committees, with a strong commitment to...
    Greens
  • Plunging dairy payout will hit regions hard
    The plunging dairy payout will hit New Zealand’s provincial towns and farm service industries hard, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Farmers have been bracing themselves for this expected announcement but it will be small towns and those who...
    Labour
  • Reducing inequality creates a stronger economy
    An OECD report finding New Zealand has one of the fast growing rates of income inequality shows “trickle down” economics has failed and that everyone is better off under a stronger economy, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “The Government should...
    Labour
  • Government surplus target turning sour
    The Government’s golden surplus target is under threat with today’s Crown accounts showing the deficit is $260 million worse than expected, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “It is two blows in one morning for the Government’s economic credibility after...
    Labour
  • Greens call for end to cruelty of factory farming
    The Government must end the legalised cruelty of factory farming, the Green Party said today.Footage shown on Campbell Live this week revealed yet again the appalling, but legal, conditions pigs are routinely kept in on factory farms. The conditions the...
    Greens
  • Milk price plunge creates $6b economic black hole
    The plunge in Fonterra’s forecast dairy payout to a seven-year low for farmers will create a $6 billion economic black hole, showing yet again that National’s failure to diversify is hurting the economy, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The...
    Labour
  • Gender Pay Gap: It’s a Matter of Leadership
    The State Services Commission’s annual Human Resource Capability report for the public sector shows the gender pay gap has not decreased since at least 2010. The gap is 14% across all management roles – a slightly bigger gap than for...
    Greens
  • Pardon me Minister, but the cracks are showing
    Cracks are appearing in Cabinet ranks with the Minister of Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, throwing his predecessor under the bus over a huge spike in spending by advisers, Labour's State Services spokesman Kris Faafoi says. "Spending to 'staff the...
    Labour
  • Confirmation of no confidence in schools plan
    That just 90 of the country’s 2500 schools have signed up to the Government's one-size-fits all performance pay scheme confirms a wide-spread lack of confidence in it, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The scheme, which creates ‘executive’ and ‘lead...
    Labour
  • John Key’s secret foreign buyers register
    John Key has been secretly planning a register for foreign buyers without telling New Zealanders, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Last week Andrew Little called on John Key to adopt the Australian policy on foreign buyers....
    Labour
  • Another kick in the guts for Christchurch
    The government has walked away from the people of Christchurch with Cabinet’s decision today to cut funding available through local Members of Parliament offices to assist people with their earthquake related issues, says Labour’s Earthquake Recovery Spokesperson, Ruth Dyson.  “Over the...
    Labour
  • State house sell off will make transience worse
    The National Government’s plans to sell off state housing will increase the rate of transience among the poorest families, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. The Growing Up in New Zealand study released today reveals families with children under two...
    Labour
  • Report shows need for independent food safety agency
    The inquiry into the botulism botch-up shows the decision to merge the food safety authority into the Ministry of Primary Industries was a failure, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “MPI has been severely criticised in this report for...
    Labour
  • National needs to pull their head out of the sand on climate change
    Green MPs were out across the country attending Heads in the Sand events this weekend. I spoke at the Christchurch event where a couple of hundred people mimicked the Government’s climate policy by burying their heads in the sand. It...
    Greens
  • Claims of pumping up the volume all noise
    New manufacturing figures from Statistics NZ reveal a further decline in New Zealand's export performance, highlighting the Government's ongoing failure to rebalance the economy, Labour's Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says."The National Government has adopted a volume-based approach in an...
    Labour
  • Latest secret TPPA leak reveals mass surveillance plans
    When the GCSB debate was in full flight I warned that a seemingly innocuous e-commerce chapter in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) could become a stalking horse for the NSA to get its hands on our personal data, as well...
    The Daily Blog
  • Say ‘Yay’, not ‘Nay’, to this New Zealand Flag
    In 2017, we will get a chance to have our chance to choose what is arguably the most important symbol for our country; our national flag. I remember asking Jack Marshall in 1972, at a political meeting in Palmerston North’s...
    The Daily Blog
  • Mediation Between Lyttelton Port and Union Fails
    The Rail and Maritime Union (RMTU) has opted to continue its overtime ban indefinitely after mediation with the Lyttelton Port of Christchurch (LPC) failed to progress collective bargaining.   “There was no substantial shift in LPC’s position today so the...
    The Daily Blog
  • Letter from Pakistan
    I was in Peshawar last week. It is a vibrant city with a real energy to it. It is my favourite place to be in Pakistan. You feel the energy as you drive around the city. I am in an...
    The Daily Blog
  • Lyttelton Port workers begin overtime ban
    Media Release: Rail & Maritime Transport Union Lyttelton Port workers begin overtime ban Workers of Christchurch Rail and Lyttelton Port have begun an indefinite ban on overtime, according to the Rail and Maritime Transport Union. The ban was announced at...
    The Daily Blog
  • So the United States of Torture is the ally we are supporting to re-invade ...
    How easy is it to con the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind? Very. The despicable means by which this corrupt dirty politics Government have gone about trying to use the fear and anger caused by the Sydney hostage situation...
    The Daily Blog
  • A tale of two gunmen – how the media spins
    A tale of two gunmen – how the media spins...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Jill Ovens – Auckland Hospital worker cuts – Democracy the ...
    Auckland Hospital kitchen workers tell CEO Ailsa Claire (far right) a week ago that they did not want to be contracted out. Such was the arrogance that no contingency plans were made in the event that these workers would be...
    The Daily Blog
  • Political opportunists out in force over Sydney hostage crisis
    It hasn’t taken long for supporters of New Zealand’s so-called “anti-terror” legislation passed last week through parliament to try and justify it in the wake of the Sydney hostage crisis. Before we even knew much about the gunman or hostage...
    The Daily Blog
  • NZs new hobby – hating the poor
    Last week people queued at the doors of the Auckland City Mission. They are people that are living without enough income to afford the basics let alone the extras we as a society have come to expect at Christmas. Extras...
    The Daily Blog
  • The only people who believed National’s surplus illusion were voters
    Sigh – the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind are pretty easy to con aren’t they? National’s surplus was always a joke that would never happen, but in every single focus group, voters believed by overwhelming numbers that National were...
    The Daily Blog
  • Key’s crocodile tears over dirty politics
    John Key: Bloggers ‘not big part of my day’ Prime Minister John Key says bloggers are not a “big part of his day” but he lives in a world where he can’t ignore them. Speaking on TVNZ’s Breakfast programme today,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why we are in inequality denial and climate change denial
        We are a country in denial over our inequality and climate change. Both issues have the same thread that runs through them. 30 years of neoliberalism has generated its own cultural narratives and myths. We have been taught that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of ...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of the Year is ethically bankrupt...
    The Daily Blog
  • Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety
    Media Release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union   Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety   The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is raising serious questions over the safety of the staff on Auckland’s train network after violent incidents on...
    The Daily Blog
  • Australia stares down Siege – National Party politicise tragedy
    The Sydney siege has finished, from the reports that are breaking the gunman, Man Haron Monis is dead and one of the hostages has also been killed. The Australian Police seem to have acted incredibly professionally and the real Australian...
    The Daily Blog
  • The termination of the Internet Mana alliance
    Last week the Mana Movement and Internet Party wrote to the Electoral Commission to cancel the registration of the Internet-Mana political party. It was a decision which brought the arrangement between the parties to a natural end after failing to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Peace breaks out between Greens and Labour
    Finally some good news for the Left. Peace has broken out between the Greens and Labour. One of the greatest barriers to a real relationship between the Greens and Labour has been the uncompromising arrogance of the Labour Party Caucus...
    The Daily Blog
  • Little keeps it stupid, simple
    Labour MP drops euthanasia billA bill which would legalise voluntary euthanasia has been dropped by Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway at the request of his leader Andrew Little. Mr Lees-Galloway had been canvassing support for his End of Life Choice Bill...
    The Daily Blog
  • Dear Ministry for Social Development,
    Dear Ministry for Social Development, I realise you probably already know this, but just a wee reminder of REALITY. You know – the reality of the vast majority of us who aren’t making ends meet and are struggling to live...
    The Daily Blog
  • Social Policy still in the dark ages when it comes to relationships
    Two years ago I became aware of the work of two very able barristers who defend low income women accused of relationship fraud. CPAG then began collecting cases and stories of horrendous misery and victimisation. Then penny was slow to...
    The Daily Blog
  • The truth about inequality
      The truth about inequality...
    The Daily Blog
  • Rather Than Sending Troops To Iraq … Brownlee May Wish To Consider Better...
    There’s something a little unsettling going on at the moment. Ok, many somethings. Of particular concern is the fact that right now, New Zealand troops are training at Waiouru for deployment to Iraq – and, assumedly, the ongoing war against ISIS. Brownlee,...
    The Daily Blog
  • West Papua’s Saralana Declaration most vital unity development for 52 yea...
    Newly elected spokesman for the unified West Papuan movement Benny Wenda is treated to a chiefly welcome at the opening ceremony of the “unity” meeting in Port Vila. Photo: © Ben Bohane/wakaphotos.com David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. A...
    The Daily Blog
  • Helen says it all
    Helen says it all...
    The Daily Blog
  • When Fran O’Sullivan, John Armstrong and Cameron Slater are singing Andre...
    The mainstream media of NZ will never allow a Labour leader who threatens the bastions of neoliberalism from ever taking power. David Cunliffe found that out. So when the mainstream media establishment from Fran O’Sullivan to John Armstrong to even...
    The Daily Blog
  • Wisdom’s Mirror: Can Grant Robertson Slay the Neoliberal Gorgon?
    HOW TO ELIMINATE one’s rival without getting one’s hands dirty? It’s a problem with a prodigious political pedigree. King David’s lust for Bathsheba drove him to order Uriah, her unfortunate husband, placed in the front line of battle – where...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Miriam Pierard – Sweet Sixteen and able to vote?
    The level of voter participation in elections is an indication of the health of a democracy. Declining turnout across the democratic world, particularly among young people, has led to questions about the legitimacy of our governing institutions. It is time...
    The Daily Blog
  • Public Equity and Progressive Politics
    We heard from the OECD on Wednesday morning (10 Dec) [Focus on Inequality and Growth] that inequality suppresses economic growth. (Here are Radio New Zealand’s morning reports on this.) This is hardly a surprise to many economists and non-economists alike. The key point in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Analysis: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us!
    Analysis (Text & Audio): Across The Ditch – Selwyn Manning & Peter Godfrey Headline: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us! 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.FiveAA’s Peter Godfrey and MIL’s Selwyn Manning present their last...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sharing intelligence with CIA torturers
    New Zealand’s spy agencies have long presented intelligence sharing with their US counterparts as mutually beneficial and benign. That stance has always lacked credibility and is now its impossible to justify. The just-released US Senate Intelligence Committee report shows that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour votes for Surveillance State. NZ First Opposes!
    A few weeks before the election, the New Zealand Labour Party decided to cash in on simmering popular discontent with the state of the surveillance state that National’s set up. Never mind their own previous and well-publicized brushes with egregious state-surveillance … they wanted people to know that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Economic ideology destroys us all
    The OECD’s latest report says “The biggest factor for the impact of inequality on growth is the gap between lower income households and the rest of the population. The negative effect is not just for the poorest income decile but...
    The Daily Blog
  • 3 simple words for the Labour Party
    I have 3 very simple words for all those Labour Party apologists who are trying to rinse Labour clean here. Get. A. Warrant. You can all try and spin this any way you want, but Labour voted for 24 hour...
    The Daily Blog
  • 2014 – Year of the angry white knuckle
    I knew Internet/MANA would have to fight National, ACT, Conservative Party, United Future, Maori Party and the mainstream media. I didn’t think they would also have to fight Labour, the Greens and NZ First as well. Apparently feeding hungry kids in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Chris Rock on cop shootings
    Chris Rock on cop shootings...
    The Daily Blog
  • Bank Lending: Restrictions and Favourites
    An important story in 2014 has been the Reserve Bank’s ‘loan-to-value ratio’ restrictions, which have made it extremely hard for first-time house buyers to get sufficient finance to buy a house. Corran Dann in TVNZ’s  Q+A (7 Dec) suggested that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – How should Waitangi Tribunal ruling on S...
      This weeks Waatea news column - How should  Waitangi Tribunal ruling on Sovereignty be implemented?...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour sell us out on warrantless surveillance
    Isn’t it depressing that Labour are selling us out by voting for warrantless spying by an agency caught out smearing them? Last night Labour do what they always do, over compensate on Security issues. So terrified are Labour at being...
    The Daily Blog
  • This Is The Headline For Test Post
    This Is The Headline For Test Post Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut eget neque facilisis sapien laoreet volutpat. Nulla vel nisl nec purus interdum tincidunt. Phasellus orci sapien, vestibulum et pulvinar non, pellentesque eget leo. Sed...
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  • Question Time in Parliament Today – National Party MPs cheer graph that s...
    This is the graph the National Party were shown by Russel Norman in Parliament today and they all cheered…     …they cheered?!?!?!? That’s beyond denial, that’s just gleefully suicidal....
    The Daily Blog
  • NZ Pastor Prays For Homosexual Author To Kill Himself
    By Jayden Jameson and Jessie Hume If we ever needed a reminder that homophobia is alive and kicking in New Zealand we have Pastor Logan Robertson from the Westcity Baptist Church. The Westcity Baptist ministry could apparently be described as New...
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  • Political Journalism in the South-Pacific – a new direction for NZ influe...
    Last week, the incredible Pacific Journalism Review celebrated 20 years of promoting and supporting and standing up for Journalism in the South-Pacific. The conference at AUT featured journalists from around the pacific who have battled and fought and been punished...
    The Daily Blog
  • Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future
    Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future...
    The Daily Blog
  • REAL LIFE GUEST BLOG: Lou – 15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homel...
    This is Key’s real life – other NZers aren’t so privileged    15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homeless since May. I went to the Salvation Army yesterday on advice for emergency housing as my temporary accomodation had turned volatile. Just...
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  • Labour Party Members should be furious at reviews findings
    Let’s see The Standard use this image Well, well, well… Labour’s election review: What went wrongLabour’s review panel has reported its findings back about the party’s election campaign and the reasons for the low 25 per cent result, identifying problems...
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  • Judith Collins joins the Sunday Star Times and cements the Rights dominance...
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins   I don’t read the Sunday Star Times, so had no idea that they had just decided to make Judith Collins of all people a new columnist. Her appointment cements into place...
    The Daily Blog
  • Grey Lynn Festival – very Grey – Art in the Dark – very Dark
    The battle of Helm’s Deep from the Two Towers would have had better OSH conditions than Art in the Dark   Grey Lynn Festival – 2 stars So the Grey Lynn Festival happened last weekend. It’s a day where the good liberal...
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  • ‘Stalking’ Ede
      Tau Henare accuses TV3 of stalkingA former National MP has accused TV3 of stalking after one of its journalists attempted to question a former Beehive spin doctor. Today’s episode of The Nation featured an unsuccessful attempt to question former...
    The Daily Blog
  • Taxpayer Union, the NZ Herald and Len Brown’s secret hidden love den
    I love the way the NZ Herald introduced the discredited Taxpayer Union in their bullshit story about Len Brown’s secret hidden love den… ‘Secret room’ spending shows need for recall electionsA lobby group says revelations Auckland Council spent $30,000 on...
    The Daily Blog
  • SPCA welcomes glueboard traps ban
    The Royal New Zealand SPCA applauds the ban on the sale and use ofglueboard traps in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • Mediation Between Lyttelton Port and Union Fails
    The Rail and Maritime Union (RMTU) has opted to continue its overtime ban indefinitely after mediation with the Lyttelton Port of Christchurch (LPC) failed to progress collective bargaining. “There was no substantial shift in LPC’s position today...
    Scoop politics
  • Review into Phillip Smith’s escape submitted to Government
    A multi-agency review on the escape of Phillip Smith to South America has submitted its initial report to the Government today....
    Scoop politics
  • Len Brown gets haybales from giant chicken and Ms. Santa Cla
    Today at 10.30am, Ms. Santa Claus and a giant chicken delivered haybales to Len Brown’s office, urging Auckland City Council to decline a resource consent application sought by cage egg producer Craddock Farms....
    Scoop politics
  • Increased Abuse of Parents A Predicted Outcome
    Family First NZ says that the increasing level of parental abuse , especially towards mothers, is an unfortunate but expected outcome of the rise of children’s ‘rights’ and the undermining of parental authority....
    Scoop politics
  • Brownlee’s Misplaced War on Acronyms
    The beleaguered Minister of Defence who reportedly cannot tell an RFL (required fitness level) from an AWQ (annual weapons qualification) has declared war on military acronyms while proving the proverb about those in glass houses....
    Scoop politics
  • Fluoride risks whitewashed in rushed consultation
    Ministry of Health propose to exempt toxic industrial waste products used in water fluoridation from the Medicines Act 1981...
    Scoop politics
  • Practical Tips on Working and Living in New Zealand
    JUANderful Juan” in 7-Minute Migrante Video Project Shares Practical Tips on Working and Living in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics
  • Christmas Day in Prison
    Christmas Day in prison this year will involve swapping the main meal of the day, so that dinner will be served at lunchtime, leaving the evening meal to be sandwiches. This is standard practice for this day....
    Scoop politics
  • Alcohol advertising bans need stronger evidence
    Wellington (18 December 2014): The New Zealand Initiative’s Head of Research, Dr Eric Crampton, today urged Cabinet to look to the evidence before banning alcohol advertising and sponsorship. The Ministerial Forum on Advertising and Sponsorship...
    Scoop politics
  • EPA grants marine consent to OMV NZ Ltd
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has granted a marine consent to OMV NZ Ltd to continue its development drilling programme in the Maari oil field in the South Taranaki Bight....
    Scoop politics
  • DHB puts staff and patients at risk in order to save money
    The Public Service Association (PSA) is alarmed that the Waikato District Health Board (WDHB) is proposing to cut the 4 and 2 roster system, established nationally, for mental health nurses. The PSA represents more than 210 mental health nurses working...
    Scoop politics
  • Ambivilence about alcohol marketing recommendations
    Ministers Adams and Dunn issued a media release yesterday nearly two months after receiving a final report from their Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship, and four years following an original announcement to review alcohol...
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  • Alcohol forum recommendations: a step in the right direction
    The Forum has stated clearly that that it accepts alcohol marketing plays a role in heavy alcohol consumption and subsequent harm, and that young people need to be protected from it by regulation....
    Scoop politics
  • Court Judgment: Nicky Hager v Police on Dirty Politics Raids
    Mr Hager alleges that steps taken by the second respondent (the Police): first, in deciding to apply for a search warrant in respect of Mr Hager’s premises; secondly, in applying for the warrant; and thirdly, executing the warrant at his...
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  • Holiday home hazards revealed
    Common sense ways to look after your property this summer Auckland, 18 December 2014 – Burglars aren’t the only threat to your home during the holiday season, says AA Insurance. It’s more likely to be broken water pipes, burst hot...
    Scoop politics
  • Grieving families should be able to scatter ashes in peace
    Grieving families should be able to scatter ashes in peace 18 December 2014 Funeral directors are relieved that Wellington City Council has finally dropped plans to charge families for permits to scatter ashes in public places. Funeral Directors...
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  • RSA Offers Condolences To Victims Of Sydney Siege
    As an organisation representing over 100,000 New Zealanders, the RSA has today condemned the actions taken by Man Haron Monis during his siege in a Sydney café, and offered their deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Tori Johnson...
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  • Kiwi activists crowdfund billboard for Simon Bridges
    Almost seven thousand New Zealanders have taken part in a crowdfunding campaign, and have raised enough money to put a billboard up in Tauranga that is directed at Simon Bridges, the Minister of Energy and Resources....
    Scoop politics
  • Leaked TISA text exposes US threat to privacy, data security
    ‘The US is demanding that New Zealand and other countries accept sweeping rules that would override privacy protections for digitised personal and other data’, according to Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland....
    Scoop politics
  • Lyttelton Port workers begin overtime ban
    Workers of Christchurch Rail and Lyttelton Port have begun an indefinite ban on overtime, according to the Rail and Maritime Transport Union. The ban was announced at a mass meeting at the Port after negotiations between Lyttelton Port of Christchurch...
    Scoop politics
  • Ban on Alcohol Advertising Could Cost Taxpayer
    Responding to yesterday's release of the report of the Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship, Jordan Williams, the Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Farm safety isn’t helped by punitive fines
    Federated Farmers Health and Safety spokesperson, Katie Milne says she is concerned about the impact of the $40,000 fine for a Marlborough farm couple, who weren’t wearing helmets and carrying children as passengers. The Court case, and subsequent...
    Scoop politics
  • New online guide to NZ’s environment goes live
    The Environment Foundation* has launched a new web-based guide to the management of New Zealand’s natural environment....
    Scoop politics
  • Ban On Alcohol Advertising Just One Step
    Family First NZ says that a proposed ban on alcohol advertising at sports events as recommended by a ministerial forum is an important move, but will not solve the binge drinking and alcohol abuse issue on its own....
    Scoop politics
  • CLANZ scholarship winner to examine legal services to Crown
    Wellington in-house lawyer Tania Warburton is the inaugural winner of the research scholarship established by the Corporate Lawyers Association of New Zealand (CLANZ)....
    Scoop politics
  • Joint Australasian operation dismantles drug syndicate
    The Joint Organised Crime Task Force (JOCTF), leading a multi-agency team, has smashed a multi-million dollar international organised crime network following raids across Melbourne this morning....
    Scoop politics
  • Video: Meet Mark Gilbert, U.S. Ambassador-Designate to NZ
    Join us in welcoming Ambassador-Designate Mark Gilbert and his wife Nancy. They are arriving in New Zealand shortly and wanted to introduce themselves. Watch this video to learn about his connections with Aotearoa, and why he thinks the partnership between...
    Scoop politics
  • MIA Welcomes Review Findings
    The MIA welcomes the findings of the Health Quality & Safety Commission into child and youth mortality arising from the use of motorcycles, quads and other agricultural vehicles....
    Scoop politics
  • Quads Bikes Not for Under 16s
    Safekids Aotearoa strongly supports recommendations made in a report released today highlighting the dangers posed by quad bikes when ridden or controlled by children who are under 16 years of age....
    Scoop politics
  • Inquiry on Parliament’s legislative response to emergencies
    Public submissions are being invited on Regulations Review Committee’s Inquiry into Parliament’s legislative response to future national emergencies. The closing date for submissions is Sunday, 1 March 2015....
    Scoop politics
  • Switch off on the beach NOT at level crossings
    KiwiRail and TrackSAFE NZ have launched a new summer rail safety campaign with a message to motorists to stay focused and always look for trains at level crossings over the holidays. December is known as the month for family, festivity...
    Scoop politics
  • Report on child and youth deaths from vehicle use
    Quad bike and other off-road vehicle accidents second largest cause of child recreational deaths...
    Scoop politics
  • Inspector-General accepts apology for leak of report
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, has accepted an unreserved apology from Hon Phil Goff MP for disclosing some of the contents of her recent Report into the Release of Information by the NZSIS in July and August...
    Scoop politics
  • Santa’s naughty list shows NZPork in trouble
    Santa has provided animal advocacy organisation SAFE with an early copy of this year’s naughty list , as it prominently features many animal-abusing industries and businesses, with NZPork topping the list....
    Scoop politics
  • WWI veterans had persisting higher risk of early death
    New research on the impact of the First World War on participating New Zealand soldiers shows they typically lost around eight years of life and had an increased risk of early death in the post-war period....
    Scoop politics
  • Rainbow Wellington urges further change from Blood Service
    This week the New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) announced the implementation of the agreed changes to blood donor deferral. For men who have sex with men (MSM) this primarily involves a reduction of the deferral period from five years to...
    Scoop politics
  • New Zealand Government signals reversal of fortune
    The Government’s robust $372 million forecast surplus from Budget 2014 will turn into a $572 million deficit, according to the 2015 Half-Yearly Economic and Fiscal Update and the Budget Policy Statement. Imports are cheaper and good export prices...
    Scoop politics
  • Time for Jobs that Count in the Meat Industry
    The NZ Meat Workers Union will launch a new national campaign to highlight job insecurity in the Meat Industry this afternoon in Palmerston North....
    Scoop politics
  • Protest at killing of schoolboys – Vigil 17/12/14
    A peaceful vigil will be held in Downtown Square opposite Britomart station – cnr of Queen and Customs St from 11-45 am: Wednesday 17 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Social housing provider opens development in Johnsonvillle
    Social housing provider, Accessible Properties, will be opening eight new social housing units in a new housing development in Johnsonville tomorrow....
    Scoop politics
  • NCWNZ Wins Court Case
    ComVoices welcomes and celebrates the news that the National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) has won its High Court case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
  • Cut Taxes + Cut Waste = Surplus
    Responding to the Treasury's Half Year Fiscal and Economic Update, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Cuts in public services likely fromBudget Policy Statement
    The horizon for workers looks gloomy with the release today of the Budget Policy statement. “Continuing real cuts in Government funding of public services are inevitable as a result of today’s Budget Policy Statement. The policy ignores the social,...
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Chief Ombudsman launches major review of OIA practices
    The Chief Ombudsman, Dame Beverley Wakem, has today begun a wide ranging review of Official Information Act (OIA) practices in the public sector....
    Scoop politics
  • The Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning
    “Our hearts and minds are with the people of Sydney: the Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning,” said Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy....
    Scoop politics
  • A safety message for the festive season from Housing NZ
    Batteries may be required for some of the best toys under the tree this year, but they are just as essential to enjoying the greatest gift of all, says Housing New Zealand General Manager of Property Services, Marcus Bosch. “Smoke...
    Scoop politics
  • Charity Wins in the High Court
    The National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) is delighted that the High Court has found in its favour in its case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
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