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MSM columns – clueless about fact checking

Written By: - Date published: 5:33 pm, September 14th, 2008 - 29 comments
Categories: Media - Tags: , , , , , , ,

Lynn PrenticeThis week the election was announced and the third question to the PM (asked by Colin Espiner) was about whether The Standard possibly knew the date (Helen doesn’t tell us either). Colin thinks we’re being sensitive about the mainstream media’s attitudes to The Standard as shown in a comment he made on his own blog post (scroll to somewhere near the bottom) (1).

There is a reason for our sensitivity – journalistic competence. There have been a series of comments by ‘professional’ columnists and journalists who have never bothered to check their story details. Now I’d consider that as them being slack and slipshod rather than professional.

My name and contact details have been available for this site since its inception because it is a requirement by InternetNZ that a real person or organization and correct contact details are listed for every domain. Any journalist or columnist could have checked the details of a story about The Standard. To do so would have required that they use our Contact Us or used a standard whois to find out who to talk to to check ‘facts’.

I have never been contacted by any media about the site and (as far as I’m aware) neither has Clinton Smith, even after his details got added to the contacts section. Instead the professionals seem to prefer listening to the technically incompetent making unsupported assertions as repeated by ‘independent’ commentators and opposition politicians without bothering to actually ask anyone at The Standard.

We get supposedly competent columnists like :-

IrishBill has called the Press Gallery to task in his post You dicks about getting bogged down in trivia. Colin clarified in the comment:-

I’m disappointed, too – disappointed you’d resort to infantile language like calling the press gallery – and me in particular – “dicks” because I asked a question about whether the Standard had advance knowledge of the election date. For the record, I asked the question because radio were already reporting the rumour. I asked about 12 questions at the press conference. That was only one of them. All sorts of questions are flung around press conferences. If you want to play at being a journalist, why don’t you get parliamentary accreditation and come down and see for yourself?

Normally we’d welcome the hits. But when an election is being announced…. Please! It simply sounds like the radio talkback was doing its usual inanities. Possibly someone was short of a headline.

Also there is a reason we don’t hang around the press gallery – we’re busy. Read our About on the section Why don’t you post more often/more regularly etc?. This is all done in our spare time and in my case out of my own pocket. Personally I’d like to get more time coding rather than wasting it in a media pack of programming illiterates. Besides Vernon Small makes his attitude plain and I’d tend to agree with him. Bloggers probably do more good by being outside the media pack and filling in their little deficiencies.

1. It is pretty weird that few of the MSM blogs seem to permalink their comments sections. Come on – it isn’t very hard to so, and it’d make it possible to cross-link to a dissenting comment about fact in the original post.

2. It is unfortunate that the blog name The Irascible Curmudgeon has been taken. Bill Ralston fits the phrase perfectly. What other style of journalist would describe Whale’s grasp on technical matters as “good cyber-detective work” – you really have to be out of touch!

Update: It appears that while I’ve been writing this blog that my talented niece Rochelle has been dealing with the same problem of insufficient fact checking on another topic. Looks like I should expend some more time on a post on that topic. In the meantime I’ll change the post title.

29 comments on “MSM columns – clueless about fact checking”

  1. randal 1

    why let a few little facts spoila good story. the msm has become fat, bloated, sensitive about their privileges and just downright lazy not to say bought and paid for. some of them them have even become senile drooling dinosaurs. just look at their efforts. there was not one picture of winnie last week that did not include the gibbering squibber in the background liek a screaming skull. they are playing cutesie and sooner or later the owners are going to remove thm wholesale and replace them with another lot as soon as they figure out how to report all news in New Zealand from India or somewhere.

  2. Dan 2

    Spot on Lynn. I have despaired at the lack of a fourth estate for years. The current crop of journalists lack the humour and integrity of the Tom Scotts and Pat Booths of old. They toe the party line of the boss. They ignore the hard questions of light weight Key; they hunt as a cowardly pack on Winston; and they are no better than Jenny Shipley and the Nats generally with their putdowns of Clark.
    The journalists and bloggers on the right somehow think that pouring their unsubstantiated logic out on their keyboards, that somehow wish fulfilment is the reality. Sorry guys, I have the same wish fulfilment dreams each Lotto draw. As far as objective journalism goes, it is a joke.
    I can understand why the press gallery is worried about the Standard. Most of my friends ( including a number of the right) turn to the Standard first before reading the various permutations in the print media.
    Thank you Lynn, and Steve and the rest. The part-timers, who have real jobs, are setting the pace compared to the posers like Hooton.

  3. Julie 3

    I’m not that impressed with One News tonight, they’ve said the current poll is really bad for Labour, yet their own graphics, which accompanied Guyon Espiner saying this, showed that actually National and Labour were both pretty steady in their support from the last poll they had. Weird. If anyone has the skillz I lack, i.e. to pull the video and put it up, you’ll see what I mean. Sensationalising things for the sake of it isn’t serving our democracy v well imho.

  4. An 18 point gap needs no fuzzy graphics Julie. The autopsy in December will be littered with ifs.
    If only we had put Goff in a year ago.
    If only we had listened to the public on the anti smacking bill.
    If only we had cut Winstons throat.
    And a couple of hundred others.

  5. DS 5

    >>>An 18 point gap needs no fuzzy graphics Julie. The autopsy in December will be littered with ifs.<<<

    Colmar-Brunton’s last pre-election poll in 2005 was Nat 44 Lab 37. The actual result was Lab 41 Nat 39 – i.e, National support was overestimated by five, Labour support underestimated by four.

    If we “correct” the 53-35 gap using that, we end up with Nat 48 Lab 39. Which, after adding the Greens (who are now above the threshold again) and the Maori Party means that National, while still having the advantage, has little room for error.

    Poor old TVNZ, still utterly clueless on the realities of MMP.

  6. weka 6

    Speaking of technically challenged, why is policy.net using yellow text on white background for its policy links? Weird.

  7. randal 7

    media7 has a blog that is always out of date and does not allow comments?

  8. Julie 8

    Sigh, BB, my point was not the size of the gap, but the fact that their graphics showed it hadn’t changed much but their voiceover was talked about it opening up. Is that simpler for you to understand?

  9. Yes the extreme left wing media needs to check facts and ask questions that will lead to answers about ACTUAL policies, NOT the bs that TVNZ has done for the past few years. They have treated Helen with kid Gloves over the years, infact they do this to all politicians on all sides, except for Winston.

    But, hey THE WARRIORS WON!!!!!!!!!!!! So I’m happy, Manu for Prime Minister!!!!!!!

  10. Quoth the Raven 10

    I think one word perfectly describes Colin Espiner – Hack.

  11. lprent 11

    QTR: Actually I like most of his work, it is hard to point to errors in his work.

    Irish and myself just thought that asking a question like that when the PM announcing an election was just silly.

  12. mike 12

    “Poor old TVNZ, still utterly clueless on the realities of MMP.”

    DS – I think its clueless counting the MP in the left bloc of parties. AS helen said the other day its all about trends.

    …but she she also said it’s all about “trust” too so go figure that one out coming from her.

  13. lprent 13

    Julie: You’re correct. One News are being idiots for the headline.

    Stuff: Labour slips slightly in latest poll

    A One News poll tonight put National on 53 per cent support, up 2 points since its last poll a month ago. It puts Labour on 35 per cent, a drop of 2 points.

    National leader John Key’s popularity was also up from 36 per cent to 40 per cent, while Prime Minister Helen Clark’s dropped from 33 per cent to 31 per cent.

    The August data is here on Colmar-Brunton August 2008.

    Personally I’ve been undecided for a while if the Colmar-Brunton poll is the worst or second worst poll for accuracy.

    The poll of 1000 people, with a margin of error of 3.1 per cent was conducted between last Saturday and Thursday night a day before Miss Clark announced the election date of November 8.

    . I’d need to look at a number of other polls to see if there is a trend or if this is just the selection criteria for CB. I think that they actively select in North Shore and Fendalton.

  14. How polling places are pretty accurate, I mean they aren’t like Gallap.

  15. the sprout 15

    true lynn.
    i thought “You Dicks” was a pithy and accurate headline, and an inevitable outcome for those who interview their keyboards in the name of professional journalism.
    as for Ralston… he is becoming Garth George more and more each day.

  16. lprent 16

    mike: Exactly. It is all about trends. You have to remember that each of these polls are done by different companies using different methodologies. Consequently they get different results from each other even when they do them in the same period.

    The best way of looking at polls is to look from the last poll from the same company to the next poll in the same company. Then you can see what is more likely to be a trend rather than just the jittering that is different polls by different methodologies.

    As Stuff correctly showed, this latest poll showed a minor change. Ignore the absolute values and look at this..

    Nat -3, -1, +2
    Lab +6, +2, -2

    Those are the change rates on the Colmar Brunton poll in July, August, and September. The poll is meant to have an error rate of 3.1% – so at best this shows pretty much a steady state with no major trends.

    I’m sure that is not what the Nats would like to see.

  17. IrishBill 17

    “QTR: Actually I like most of his work, it is hard to point to errors in his work.”

    Lynn, I agree and I like the fact he’s willing to get involved in his blog’s comments section and have a bit of a stoush. I was surprised to find out it was Colin that asked that question.

  18. gobsmacked 18

    Well, I was watching One News with hands over my eyes, like hiding from the Daleks as a kid. I thought it was going to be “Exterminate, Exterminate … Labour fall below 30%”. When the result came on it was a huge relief.

    This was the worst poll timing possible (Sun to Thurs of last week), and the least favourable polling organisation (e.g. the last three Colmar Brunton polls of the 2005 campaign all had National ahead). To have the Greens over the threshold and Labour hardly taking a hit is a very good starting point for the campaign. They will never be lower.

    National can keep these poll ratings as long as they spend the entire campaign saying nothing. I’m sure they’ll do their best but it’s going to be tricky hiding John Key and his lovable caucus from the voters for 8 weeks.

  19. Hi, how do you know, they will never be lower?

  20. gobsmacked 20

    Well, unless Owen Glenn is planning a return visit!

    Labour have reached the core vote. If people wanted to give up on Labour, after the last 3 years, and then the last few days worst of all, then they would have made up their minds to do so by now.

    Clark would have to eat a kakapo on live TV for Labour’s support to fall further.

  21. Lynn, I do hope the whale doesn’t set upon Rochelle!

  22. Sarah 22

    I’ll probably be banned for this but it has to be said — the individual who is named “lprent” comes across as the biggest hack in the history of left wing politics. This individual comes across as not only arrogant, but also condescending and confrontational. I have quite often heard on a few other left wing blogs that this person’s reputation is near trash, as even her own ideological allies do not hold her opinions in very high esteem.

    Although I do like many people who post on this website, “lprent” is not one of them. This person gives this website a bad name, as her ill-tempered and patronising attitude puts off many people from addressing the slanted points of which she puts forward. Moreover, the only people who I know to actually try and defend “lprent” are the other labour-party affiliates posting on this website, creating a closeted sect of the left wing in this blog which most reasonable constinuents hold a great deal of distaste for.

    Her bias in the points she makes is at times unbelievable, and although I do understand the idea of a partisan blog, I do believe that individuals should attempt some sort of free-thinking and balanced-view-making when they come to a judgement. However what I have seen in my time at “The Standard,” is that this individual seems to be unable to come up with any coherent points on her own, rather that she is forced to follow Labour-Party-line on almost all occasions.

    Like a predator, I have seen nothing as of yet which has slipped through this omnivient creature’s glare, as she has at all stages ferociously attempted to protect her red-frenzied hatchlings. I wait in trepidation, hoping, just hoping, for this green-eyed subordinate to realise the error of her ways and let go of those which she feels engrafted to protect.

  23. r0b 23

    What was this thread about again? That’s right – fact checking. Hey “sarah” – you should have done some fact checking. Your comment above is priceless.

  24. hahahah, oh dear, Sarah’s comment just made my night, please please don’t delete it!

    But seriously, someone has to do the dirty work to keep this place clean, and unfortunately, as the owner that falls upon lprent. While the moderation policy may seem harsh, it keeps the quality of the blog up and provides a point of difference.

    Sarah, if your having trouble winning arguments without going way off topic, being abusive or telling lies, do you think that’s telling you something?

  25. lprent 25

    Ah yes. ‘Sarah’. As r0b says, perhaps you should check your facts before writing. A simple google-search on either my name or my pseudonym would give you all of the facts you need.

    Firstly I’m the sysop and I pay for the site. A site that has a sewer for a comments section is not that interesting to me.

    Secondly I’m a programmer as well as having a number of degrees in science, management, history and other topics. I’ve been in the army. I’ve worked for or setup private companies for all my working history. This makes it difficult for me to tolerate foolish people and reiteration of urban myths with any degree of equanimity. Usually I don’t refrain from expressing my opinion.

    Thirdly I’ve been involved in politics at the grassroots for a very long time. Certainly it has been for longer than most people – John Key for instance. I usually have very little idea about what NZLP policies are despite being a member. I’m a long-term centrist and probably more to the right than the left – but such terms are relatively meaningless. What I’m interested in is things that are likely to work long-term. Of course this usually puts me at odds with people like yourself who seem to live only in the present or on a theoretical level only.

    Fourthly I’ve been involved with computers since I was a teen. This includes almost all of the development time of the net in NZ. I was playing with computer comms in the late 70’s and early 80’s. I dialed into overseas BBS’es in the mid 80’s. Been on local BBS’es through the late 80’s and early 90’s. I was around and participating in usenet during both its rise and fall. I’ve written wide area programs for groups like managment students. Recently I’ve been helping run this blog site. Frankly, I’ve seen all of this many times before, including the many ways to make a system die. I’m dedicated to making sure that doesn’t happen and I’m quite willing to disrupt anyone who attempts to disrupt this site.

    Fifthly, and probably what caused r0b so much amusement is that I’m male. The type of misogynist comments you made in your last two paragraphs make me almost certain you’re the same. However in your case I’d expect that you’re probably a hell of lot less comfortable with intelligent, educated or successful women than I am. My family is full of them.

    Sixthly, I don’t post here often because I don’t have time. I do moderate a lot and occasionally join in the debates.

    Finally my primary role on this site is to primarily be a bastard sysop from hell. It means that ultimately I moderate the debate and as you note, I’m a arrogant bastard who really enjoys being one because that is part of the role, and I’m well trained in it.

    What I like is discussion that displays some intelligence. What I dislike is people who I could emulate with a relatively simple program (ie trolls) or who attack this site, its writers or other commentators without bothering to have a rational argument. People arguing here can and do expect to have their opinion challenged and are expected to defend their positions rationally.

    I don’t moderate people who debate constructively (but will sometimes argue with them). I’m really hard on those who cannot or won’t. I call it evolution in action, and by any measure it appears to work quite well. Along with the interesting posts we have the comments section that complements it.

    It means that the site is growing all of the time both in the number of people who view the posts, and the number of words in an intelligent comments section. It gets hard to argue with that kind of success because it means that we’re fulfilling a need. If you don’t like it, you’re always welcome to start your own blog and try to attrach people to your way of doing things.

    BTW: Fear not – while your comment was one of the more stupid I’ve seen for a while, it didn’t contain anything worth moderating or banning for. Of course that can change…

  26. Thanks for the links Lynn.

  27. lprent 27

    Bryan 🙂 Always willing to help even in the negative. How is the war against the immoderate going? It looked like it was dying down a bit in Chris’s comments last time I looked.

    KITNO:

    Lynn, I do hope the whale doesn’t set upon Rochelle!

    I could wish. For anything serious, the perpetrators would have to deal with the whole family. In particular my sister tends to over-react a wee bit and prefers to get things quite finished.

  28. J Mex 28

    How is the fact checking on Lord Ashcroft’s plane coming along?

  29. “J Mex

    How is the fact checking on Lord Ashcroft’s plane coming along?”

    Have asked a contact at the airport, no news yet though sorry!

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    A mass government house-building programme is a favourite policy of the left for solving the Auckland housing crisis. Use cheap government capital, build affordable, energy-efficient homes, mass produce them to get efficiencies of scale, and get people back into owning… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Protected: Tributes to Dame Margaret Sparrow
    This post is password protected. You must visit the website and enter the password to continue reading.Filed under: Uncategorized ...
    ALRANZBy ALRANZ
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    1 day ago
  • Breaking free from fossil fuels – the risk we take is not taking action
    Last week, #BreakFree2016 wrapped up across the globe. Greenpeace joined with many inspiring organisations in a global wave of peaceful actions that lasted for 12 days and took place across six continents to target the world’s most dangerous fossil fuel projects.In places… ...
    1 day ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    1 day ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    1 day ago
  • Tinder and 3nder are officially at war
    Your right to swipe for threesomes is under threat.    Some clean-cut millennials enjoying the 3nder afterglow. 1232RF Those for whom three is the magic sex-number should know that one's right to swipe one's way into a six-limb circus is… ...
    1 day ago
  • Weekly Listening: Die Antwoord, Joey Purp, King Kapisi and more
    A showcase of some of the best new music releases from the past week.   Joey Purp - GIRLS @ Feat. Chance The Rapper This track might be the catchiest three minutes and 32 seconds to hit your ears… ...
    1 day ago
  • Some big news, for me
    Two pieces of news that are kind of a big deal, for me. Firstly, I’m ditching my landline! I’m not a student and I’m not in a low income band, so make of that what you will. Secondly, after 10… ...
    GrumpollieBy Andrew
    1 day ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    1 day ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    1 day ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    1 day ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    1 day ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    frogblogBy Denise Roche
    1 day ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    1 day ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    1 day ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    1 day ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    frogblogBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 day ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    frogblogBy Gareth Hughes
    1 day ago
  • What we are expected to believe
    In recent months I have become increasingly concerned at the state of bullshit in this country. Bullshit, as Harry Frankfurt famously wrote, is distinguished not by its intentionally negative truth value (those are lies) but its absence of intentional truth… ...
    1 day ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    1 day ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    1 day ago
  • Why are whistleblowers being prosecuted as spies?
    Whistleblowers are a ‘check’ on government, corporate or organisational secrecy and malfeasance. I recently read Tim Shipman’s preview of the Chilcot report into the origins of the Tony Blair-led UK engagement in the US’s invasion of Iraq, which looked at… ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 day ago
  • Spend and Tax
    As a general rule, New Zealanders want more public spending. Surveys (such as the 2014 Election Survey) show consistent support for increases in spending, particularly in the areas of health, education, housing, law enforcement, public transport and the environment (in… ...
    Briefing PapersBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • The birth place of the artist
    It may not be the best reason to fund the arts. It’s certainly not the only one. But travelling to the small city of Rovereto, at the feet of the Italian dolomites, reminded me of the lasting influence that a… ...
    Bat bean beamBy Giovanni Tiso
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the rise of the far right, and battle bots
    In his victory speech at the Cannes film festival this week, the British film director Ken Loach warned that the rise of far right parties in Europe was being fuelled by the economic policies of austerity, and manifested in a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Why Corrections prevented Tony Robertson from getting treatment in prison
    Tony Robertson was sentenced to eight years in prison for indecently assaulting a five year old girl in 2005. He was considered a high risk prisoner and the parole board declined to release him on four separate occasions.  He was… ...
    PunditBy Roger Brooking
    2 days ago

  • Minister won’t fess up on wrong figures
    The Minister of Health was caught out telling porkies in Parliament today when he was asked about the number of people getting access to mental health and addiction services, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. ...
    25 mins ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    56 mins ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    56 mins ago
  • Scrambled announcement policy on the hoof
    Paula Bennett’s scrambled desperate announcement that she will pay homeless people to move to the regions is just the latest evidence of the disarray this Government’s housing policy is in, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This is policy… ...
    2 hours ago
  • Police Minister admits resolution rates fall short of expectation
    Police Minister Judith Collins has admitted in Parliament current burglary resolution rates are not meeting the expectations of our communities, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash “Out of 284 police stations in New Zealand in 2015, 24 stations recorded zero… ...
    3 hours ago
  • Mojo Mathers: A better deal for animals in Budget 2016
    Currently we are failing animals in NZ. On the face of it farmed and domestic animals in this country have strong legal protection from abuse, cruelty and neglect. In reality it seems that only the very worst, most extreme cases… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    3 hours ago
  • Metiria Turei: What we need from Budget 2016
    Every family deserves a warm decent home.  Everyone believes that. This housing crisis is just the latest consequence of a Government who puts the interests of the few wealthy people above the needs of NZ families.  Families are doing it… ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    4 hours ago
  • Dairy exports fall of 11%: Budget action on diversification needed
    Dairy exports have fallen 11 per cent compared to this time last year, a fall of almost $1.5b, showing the Government must take clear action on diversifying the economy in tomorrow’s Budget, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David… ...
    4 hours ago
  • Investors driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland
    Investors cashing in on skyrocketing Auckland house prices are driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland and causing homeownership rates in some of our poorest suburbs to plummet, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New analysis shows… ...
    7 hours ago
  • Budget must deliver on paid parental leave
    Budget 2016 must deliver 26 weeks paid parental leave by April 2018 – anything less will be short-changing families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “My Bill which is before Parliament this afternoon has majority support and does just that. I… ...
    7 hours ago
  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    1 day ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 day ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 day ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 day ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 day ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 day ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    2 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    3 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    4 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    5 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    5 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    5 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness&hellip; ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    6 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    6 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    6 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    1 week ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago

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