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Ocean Acidification

Written By: - Date published: 12:00 pm, August 29th, 2011 - 32 comments
Categories: climate change, disaster, sustainability, water - Tags:

“Ocean acidification is the process of ocean pH decreasing (i.e. becoming more acidic) due to absorption of fossil fuel CO2 from the atmosphere. Another effect of ocean acidification is to reduce the amount of carbonate that is available to marine organisms, such as shellfish, for making their calcium carbonate shells.” 

This is one of the impending disasters of our head in the sand attitude to our continued belief that she’ll be right and it will all sort itself out, in the past our understanding of many things meant we just hoped and prayed they would come right. Now, to be honest, left alone most things in nature will self correct over time, but time being tens of thousands to hundred of thousands of years.

The problem is now we know what the problem is and we know how to fix it. But we can’t give up the habits can we. We delude ourselves that things will be OK. Well OA is not OK and will be one of the very high prices we pay for ignoring what we now know is happening to our oceans now and will keep happening during this century. 

Our current Government that only lives in the present have just announced that. 

“The Sustainable Farming Fund open to aquaculture a government fund that supports community-led growth and innovation in the rural sector has been widened to include aquaculture.”  

The bad news is: 

“Having absorbed one-third of the CO2 produced by human activities over the last two centuries, oceans are now 30 percent more acidic than they were at the start of the Industrial Revolution. By the end of the century, if CO2 emissions continue on the current trajectory, the world’s oceans could become 150 percent more acidic.” 

“The chemistry of the ocean is changing at an unprecedented rate and magnitude due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions,” warned a report released yesterday by the National Academy of Sciences. “The rate of change exceeds any known to have occurred for at least the past hundreds of thousands of years.” 

As usual the Nact’s are throwing around the words like sustainable every chance they get, but as most of us know the Nact’s couldn’t give a rats ass about sustainability, short term profit is their motive and a short time is all the fishing industry has left it seems. Ocean Acidification means the aquaculture industry could be in big trouble by the middle of the century, not to mention the rest of the fishing industry. 

The old argument we won’t be around or can’t do anything about OA are shortsighted and selfish, we will always be around and so will our extended families and friends. 

MrSmith

32 comments on “Ocean Acidification”

  1. Wahey,

    Who cares! We are bitten by a million invisible snakes everyday and the Pacific ocean will turn into a radioactive soup long before the seas get to acidic. To date caesium to the value of a 168 Hiroshima bombs have been released into the atmosphere. That is about 28 per month since the Tsunami or almost 1 a day and you are worried about acidity? Talk about priorities screwed.

    I’m sorry but it just makes me so angry to be pummelled with the carbon tax shite while we have far more serious real problems to deal with which are conveniently not reported on in the MSM and yes I live sustainable on a perma-culture farmette and save the trips I have to make to the big smoke so I don’t use the car unnecessarily so don’t even go there.

    • wtl 1.1

      We should care because ocean acidification is a real problem, not some imaginary problem* made up by people with an irrational fear of radiation who don’t seem to follow the simple logic that diluting ‘168 bombs worth’ (or whatever) of radioactive Caesium into a large volume (e.g. the whole of earth’s oceans) makes it completely harmless. I suppose you believe in homeopathy?

      * unless you live close to Fukushima

      • travellerev 1.1.1

        I take my responsibility to the planet we live on very seriously and I tell you something for nothing: I think that if we bring out the guillotine and behead the entire energy gulping private jet owning, have to have a house in Hawaii banking elite including the Angelina Jolies, Bono’s and lady Gaga’s not to mention Russian oligarchs and Virgin owner Branson and his ilk we’d solve the entire energy consumption carbon spewing problem in one foul swoop and while we’re at it let’s start with Mr. Inconvenient Truth billionaire and his energy devouring houses.

        And with regards to your ignorance about Fukushima’s disaster the following:

        Radio active fall out and hot spots are found not just in Japan but in California and other parts of the US According to Chinese scientists Japan has already contaminated 252,000-square-kilometer area within 800 kilometers to the east of Fukushima Prefecture.

        Radio active whales have been caught 650 miles of the Japanese coast.

        Radio active Japanese green tea has been found in Paris and Rotterdam.

        According to Arnie Gundersen an engineer who has been working in the nuclear industry people in Seattle are breathing in in average 5-10 hot Fukushima particles a day and the US government has signed an agreement with Japan to keep Fukushima out of the mainstream news.

        And lastly but this is by no means an exhaustive list due to the practice of feeding their cattle rice straw radioactive cattle are showing up all over Japan.

        Oh, and one more just for the hell of it. Radioactivity does not get diluted. The particles may be far and wide but they get absorbed by bottom feeders and algae which in their turn get eaten by small fish to bigger fish and so on until they end up on your plate. Caesium has a half life of 30 years. That mean that after 30 years it is only half as radioactive but it is still fucking radio active.

        The reactors are still in full meltdown open to air and water and right next to the Pacific ocean with cracks now opening around the plant allowing for the cores which have melted into the soil and the ground water to spew unlimited radioactive steam into the atmosphere!

        And while we are throwing in personal abuse and issues not connected to the thread I take it you still believe 19 young Saudis with box cutters  could fly 4 hijacked planes for 1.5 hours in the most guarded airspace in the world and collapse three buildings in free fall speed with two planes?

        Moron

        • travellerev 1.1.1.1

          Hellup I’m in purgatory. Too many links I suspect!

        • wtl 1.1.1.2

          Meh, I was just pointing out the obvious flaw in your logic. Yes, radioactive isotopes are diluted. It is a simply law of physics. Certain radioactive isotopes (like iodine) might accumulate in living organisms (because they actively take them up) but even then only in competition with naturally occuring non-radioactive isotopes of which make up an enormous proportion of each element in the earth. Tell me: how many moles of radioactive caesium were produced by Fukushima. And then tell me how many moles of non-radioactive caesium are there in the world? That is dilution. The half-life is irrelevant.

          Add that to the fact that radiation is trivial to detect it makes a largescale conspiracy impossible. And the fact that radiation has been detected in whales, tea, whatever equally means nothing because it possible to detect radioactive material in minute amounts that are not harmful to the health.

          The problem is you hear the word radiation and go bat-shit crazy, whereas the reality is we are exposed to radiation everyday ranging from UV to cosmic rays to naturally occuring radioactive isotopes. It all depends on the dose. And while the dose might be high enough to be dangerous if you live close to Fukushima, and is therefore a bad disaster for people there, it is not a worldwide problem. Of course I will change my mind if a reliable source can demonstrate that harmful levels of radioactive material are being found far away from the disaster, but I don’t expect that will happen.

          Finally, even if radiation levels did increase to ‘harmful’ levels, it doesn’t mean we will all drop dead. Let alone all life on earth like you seem to be implying. All it will mean is a higher level of background mutations. Cancer rates might be slightly up, but who knows if we will even detect a change given the multitude of chemical carcinogens that are present these days. Most other life won’t even notice. Did you know that wildlife is doing extremely well around Chernobyl? Why? Because the impact of humans on life on earth is much more devastating than a bit of radiation, which life has largely learned to cope with – anyone with a bit of knowledge of molecular biology would know how good cells are at detecting and repairing DNA damage, or ‘commit suicide’ if the damage is too intensive.

          A couple of Fukushima/Chernobyl type disasters are trivial compared to the damage we are doing to the planet by burning more and more fossil fuels. Carbon that has been trapped underground for millions of years is being released. And this is on an imaginable scale. Everyday, everywhere, by virtually everyone on the planet. That is a problem. Your scaremongering is not.

          Of course you will never agree, and simply post a bunch more links from conspiracy sites and/or call me a moron again. I don’t care. I am ranting of course, but sometimes I just get sick of people like you. People which make dealing with the real problems the Earth faces so much more difficult because it makes it hard from normal people to separate the real problems, with a real scientific basis, from the stuff that is simply exaggerated. If you really cared about the planet you would learn a bit of science and critical thinking and try to keep things in perspective. But you won’t of course, because that is simply too much effort for someone like you.

          I won’t bother replying again because this argument will simply go nowhere. But my final point is this, simply because I’ve been dying to say it for ages: Buildings don’t stay up on their own. They are engineered to stay up. Fly a plane into the building, then start a massive fire and you will exceed all tolerances of the buildings engineering. Once that happens, all bets are off. The building may stay up if you are lucky. Otherwise gravity will have its say. End of story.

    • Reality Bytes 1.2

      Multiple wrongs don’t make each of the wrongs any less important.

  2. oldsalt 2

    Could this be the answer
    Cold water holds more CO2 than warm. Warm water releases it, making the it less acidic. So to “save the oceans” it seems we need to let the climate warm up a bit

    • lprent 2.1

      One of the issues with climate change is the question of uncontrolled feedback loops – which you appear to be advocating.

      However there is a pretty basic flaw in your thinking. Cold water is also heavier than warm water and is made cold mainly at the polar reqions which is also where it picks up CO2. It then moves mostly in underwater cold currents to the equatorial regions because of salinity and mass differences in the very slow ocean turnover and transfer of heat and stored gases.

      So if you’re will willing to wait a few centuries (the typical time of movement), then you might see the effect that you’re describing at the equator. But the ocean will keep sucking up CO2 in the poles until those regions get quite warm, which could take some time even with the nasty feedback you’re envisaging. When there is little difference between the equator and the poles the sea levels then will be at least 70 metres higher because the ice will have all melted.

      But of course you haven’t considered these basic problems because you really aren’t that good at thinking through on the science through are you?

  3. Bored 3

    Very few of us have any cognisance of the link between the ocean and the land ecosystems….it is not very obvious from a Queen St tractor dropping off the kids at preschool before heading to work in air conditioned offices, or going for a latte. But when the cow dies from a mysterious disease and coffee plants wither what are you going to ask?

    Cant agree with Travellerev above about priorities, the radio active and the acidification are both mega issues. To put the acidification into context if creatures that set shells through absorption of calcium cannot do this due to acidification they die out. The implication is that the photosynthesisers such as plankton die out so do the fish that eat them. If the fish die out, so do the seabirds. If the seabirds are not recycling trace elements to the land via birdshit, the land based ecosystem gradually dies from a lack of trace elements….but first up goodbye whales (after all that effort…..) Now priorities?

    • RedLogix 3.1

      the radio active and the acidification are both mega issues.

      True… just on different time scales.

      Notice how Fukushima’s been pretty much airbrushed out of the media lately? TEPCO and the Japanese govt have zero credibility about what is going on, and the industry regulators appear to be doing nothing much more than acting to protect nuclear interests.. while every bit of independent news that does slip out simply confirms the worst case projections.

      Deeply worrisome… Travellerev has every right to be angry. I cannot fathom how the Japanese people must be feeling right now.

      Yet even if Fukushima got cleaned up and resolved tommorrow the carbon issue remains. Paradoxically it has these two contradictory aspects … keep on with business as usual and we drive the climate into a zone that destroys the food chain that feeds us; yet inevitably if we do that we run out of cheap oil upon which our agricultural and technical base depends. Certainly we cannot feed 7b people.

      It’s appears a damned if we do and damned if we don’t dilemma, yet it is actually the most solvable of all our problems. The answer is conceptually simple; power-down and permaculture. Yet both of these concepts demand a complete revolution in our social and economic paradigms. I don’t care what labels we use; our current mode of operation is backed up into a dead-end, and cannot be fixed.

      The good news is that changing the way we do things is easy. The bad news is that changing the way we do things is very, very hard.

      The transformation of the human heart… is the simplest, yet most mysterious of all miracles.

      • travellerev 3.1.1

        You know all this talk about loop back systems, unstable weather patterns and such if you realise that there are more then 150 weather modification programs active and the US military wants to have total control over the global weather system by 2025 then what the Fuck are we talking about?
        The Chinese didn’t want rain on the Olympic games but they do want it in some of the most arid areas of their country so they make it. Idiots are making storms near Abu Dhabi Anybody surprised weather patterns are becoming more unstable and unpredictable?

    • Bored 4.1

      Yet indeed……you can be paid to say anything. On a scientific basis however ocean acidification has plenty of empirical evidence to back it up against any denial syndicate.

      So if these guys in the link think climate change has natural causes, well good luck to them. Could we at least be honest about the undeniable issue at hand…ocean acidification?

    • NickS 4.2

      Except for the fact it was already known that cosmic rays can induce cloud formation. However measurements of cosmic radiation flux in relation to the earth’s surface temperature via direct and proxy (ice cores, cosmic rays create various isotopes that can be trapped by in snow) means shows no statistically significant relationship between them. Something Lawrence Solomon omits completely, then again he is a climate crank + the Financial Post has always failed at science.

      In other words, show me the fucking scientific evidence and statistical analyses that show Solomon’s claims aren’t actually full of shit or shut up.

      I’ll even give you a wee tip, namely to start here: http://scholar.google.co.nz/schhp?hl=en&tab=ss

  4. randal 5

    if its up to national then they dont give a stuff.
    the whole world can go to hell in a handbasket as long as they collect their rents.

    • Bored 5.1

      I have a visceral hatred (thats not too harsh a word for it) of National and their mates, not because of what they represent, BUT because of their disingenuous lies in attempting to portray otherwise. They are dishonest in the extreme and economical with the truth. Absolute contempt does not sum up how I feel about Key and the wilfully blind people who voted for him.

      • aerobubble 5.1.1

        Bush had 9/11 to boost his unpopular first election half and half into something bigger.
        I’m guessing NZ winning the rugby might be enough to grow Key’s vote, because
        on the 2008 numbers he needed the Maori Party.
        I just don’t see how Key can grow his vote otherwise, too many on the right
        are very pleased to see a broader tax system offered by Labour.
        Labour is a center right party and the economy boomed under Clark.
        Its dawning on many that being too nice to the business community just might
        be the reason there are soo many rightwing dumb nut talking head on TV,
        and sharing the private golf courses with the likes of Paul Henry.

  5. Afewknowthetruth 7

    travellerev

    ‘I take my responsibility to the planet we live on very seriously and I tell you something for nothing: I think that if we bring out the guillotine and behead the entire energy gulping private jet owning, have to have a house in Hawaii banking elite including the Angelina Jolies, Bono’s and lady Gaga’s not to mention Russian oligarchs and Virgin owner Branson and his ilk we’d solve the entire energy consumption carbon spewing problem in one foul swoop ‘

    Nice fantasy, but totally inaccurate.

    The elites undoubtedly are responsible for far more than their share of oil consumption and pollution, but their contribution pales into insignificance when you consider that most emissions come from:

    Burning coal for heating or to generate electricity

    C + O2 > CO2
    coal oxygen carbon dioxide

    Burning natural gas for heating, cooking or generating electricity

    CH4 + O2 CO2 + H2O
    natural gas oxygen carbon dioxide water

    Burning petrol for transport

    C8H18 + O2 CO2 + H2O
    petrol oxygen carbon dioxide water

    Making iron from iron ore

    Fe2O3 + C Fe + CO2
    iron ore coke iron carbon dioxide

    Making lime for agricultural use or cement manufacture

    CaCO3 CaO + CO2
    limestone lime carbon dioxide

    (Unblanced, simplified equations there, just noting the chemical involved. Something weird happened when I copied and pasted that)

    Every important industrial process generates huge amounts of carbon dioxide, and most activities engaged in by ordinary people in western societies also generate appreciable quantities of carbon dioxide.

    CO2 + H20 > H+ + HCO3-

    The bicarbonate ion buggers up shell formation for many species at the base of the food chain.

    If we manage to ‘kill’ the oceans we render this planet largely uninhabitable. Most land species (incluing humans) will not last long if the oceasn are dead.

    Ignoring that reality is what you describe as ‘take my responsibility to the planet we live on very seriously’.

    Ignorance and hypocrisy rule, as always.

    • Your absolutely right which is why as I already described above have made drastic lifestyle changes which exclude opulent consumption growing own food making own clothes (All things I like to do anyway but never the less) or buying locally produced items decreasing my carbon miles and planting loads of trees offsetting my carbon production.

      All the thing you know sensible people do but nothing will change if our elites keep living it up and expecting us to pay for it with banking bailouts and carbon tax and whatever else thy can come up with.

      • Bored 7.1.1

        Keep up the good work and example, planting is very satisfying, especially where you are not “allowed” to.

        • travellerev 7.1.1.1

          When I still lived in Holland I did some tree guerrilla planting. it was quite nice to see people smiling at them when they started to grow. Even the guys having to mow the grass around them treated them with respect. Nice!

    • Reality Bytes 7.2

      Well said Afewktt.

      • Jenny 7.2.1

        I concur.

        Well said indeed Afewktt.

        Brain I can even understand your pessimism, when all our leaders (including the Greens) are too shit scared of the polluters lobby, to get on their feet and vehemently demand the major cuts in CO2 pollution that could make any sort of difference, either quantitatively or even more importantly for our small country, qualitatively – making a stand and setting a brave iconic example to the rest of the world.

        When will these gutless wonders realise that the very survival of our species is in their hands.

        The Cabinet and the Government and the Opposition Parties have the benefit of the scientific advisers to government, and know better than even us the public of the danger we are facing.

        With the huge resources and knowledge available to government failure to take major decisive action against CO2 pollution is criminal cowardice in the face of mortal danger.

        Collectively all of them have no excuse for their cowardice in not taking the lead and spelling out the the drastic changes needed to save us.

        Why are they all so paralysed?

        Collectively they are our leaders and we look to them.

        A few of us doing our own gardening and trying to recycle will not be enough. There desperately needs to be drastic phase change in all the ruling parties in this country.

        BAU is not an option, not for National, not for Labour not for the Greens.

        • Afewknowthe truth 7.2.1.1

          Well said Jenny.

          BAU is not an option. Yet BAU is all our so-called leaders are capable of delivering. That’s why I have no time for them.

          By pursuing BAU they are actively destroying EVERYONE’S future, including their own children’s To my mind that is both insane and evil.

          Why can’t they change? Because most of them are scientifically illiterate and are infected with ‘industrial disease’. And there’s that matter of the corporate sponsorship of political parties and election funding etc. They are beholden to the monay-lenders and dare not speak the truth, it seems.

          As you say, cowadice is also a major problem. When it comes to the crunch, most of our so-called leaders are gutless.

        • RedLogix 7.2.1.2

          Why are they all so paralysed? Collectively they are our leaders and we look to them.

          In Jared Diamond’s superb book “Collapse” he details exactly why. Most extraordinary were the Viking colonists in medieval Greenland. The exact reasons for their demise are complex and make fascinating reading… yet the thing I recall most vividly that they starved to death sitting on top on an ocean of fish that they refused to eat!!!

          Culturally the Vikings thought fish was beneath them to eat… only the dirty heathen Innuit did that. The Viking had the boats, they had the means and the knowledge of how to catch fish, but their leaders refused to change… because they were such an unequal society that the rich decision-makers were insulated from the growing suffering of the ordinary people..

          And yet as Jared put it eloquently, “All their riches purchased them in the end, was the privilege of being the last to starve to death.”

          • Reality Bytes 7.2.1.2.1

            Wow, mind blown.

            Wonder if there were any vikings that secretly REALLY liked fish, and they had to sneak away for a sesh of fish, risking being severely and unfairly persecuted if they got caught…

            Sounds like a good book tho, must read sometime.

  6. So I waited to see if anyone had any science-based comments.
    Nope.
    All I saw was a lot of “ohh look over there” thread derailments.

    I am happy to take on any one who cares to dispute the science of ocean acidification. But 2 rules (that cover almost all the arguments I have ever seen):

    1) No whining about the word. Acidification means becoming more acidic (OED definition is below). There is a difference between acid and acidification and temperature is probably the best analogy to explain this. What does “cool” mean? If the temperature of a cup of coffee has dropped from 98oC to 20oC, Is the coffee cool? Has it ‘cooled’? Is a change from 98oC to 80oC cooling? Is 80oC coffee cool?

    2) No saying it will be good. That is just silly. Let us just accept that under any major and rapid environmental change there will be some winners many losers.

    From the OED:
    acidification, n.
    The action or process of making something (more) acidic; conversion into an acid; addition of acid. Cf. acidify v.

    Then because the OED is descriptive it records usage with quotes; the most recent quote, particularly apt is:

    2006 New Scientist 5 Aug. 30/1 Most scientists think it is correct to describe any process that lowers pH as acidification.

  7. So I waited to see if anyone had any science-based comments.
    Nope.
    All I saw was a lot of “ohh look over there” thread derailments.

    I am happy to take on any one who cares to dispute the reality of ocean acidification. But 2 rules (that cover almost all the arguments I have ever seen):

    1) No whining about the word. Acidification means becoming more acidic (I can post the OED definition if it will help). There is a difference between acid and acidification and temperature is probably the best analogy to explain this. What does “cool” mean? If the temperature of a cup of coffee has dropped from 98oC to 20oC, Is the coffee cool? Has it ‘cooled’? Is a change from 98oC to 80oC cooling? Is 80oC coffee cool?

    2) No saying it will be good. That is just silly. Let us just accept that under any major environmental change there will be some winners many losers.

    • MrSmith 9.1

      Thanks for dropping by Doug, I enjoyed your OA not OK series.
       
      My goal is to one day be able to write something informative and thought provoking that most people can understand, the saying “in other words” comes to mind.
       
      My guess is a lot of people just read the posts here and never comment, iprent will have some stats on this no-doubt but don’t be dismayed by the lack of science here.

  8. The Standard has been on my daily blogroll check list for a long time. I don’t comment because “me too” is boring.

    It isn’t the lack of science that dismays me. It is the gleeful and wilful ignorance – and I mean this at a societal level – that dismays me. In fact it is the same problem that faces any activist: Most people prefer to drink not at all than to drink deeply.

    If someone at a dinner party admitted they knew nothing about Shakespeare and asked if Hamlet was the one with Darth Vader they would be scorned. If someone at a dinner party says they know nothing about maths or science then the guests compete to display previous ignorances they eventually had corrected.

    Nobody does or can know everything but it is unseemly to be proud of profound ignorance.

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  • 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
  • Sad
    There's a lot of non-cheery news out there in the lead up to Christmas. There's the Taliban school massacre, the Sydney siege, the US Torture Report, and - at a much lower level, and closer to home - the Treasury's...
    Polity
  • “I said surface, not surplus”
    Here are ten explanations, excuses or distractions Bill English might like to employ over the coming days in response to news that his long promised budget surplus looks to have disappeared....
    Imperator Fish
  • Talking terror
    [Content note: discussion of terrorism and violence] Last month I wrote about the aims of ISIS as NZ’s terror legislation ramped up, how their structure and organisation has become almost impossibly fluid, adapted to social media and the internet in...
    On the Left
  • Letter to the editor – Time to milk a tragedy again, by our Dear Leader
    . . from: Frank Macskasy <fmacskasy@gmail.com> to: Dominion Post <letters@dompost.co.nz> date: Tue, Dec 16, 2014 subject: Letter to the editor . The Editor Dominion Post . Once again, predictably, our esteemed Prime Minister has exploited a tragic situation for his...
    Frankly Speaking
  • 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
  • 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....
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  • 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...
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  • 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...
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  • 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...
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  • Eric Garner killed by NYPD original footage
    The horror of a ultra militarised and racist American Police Force who can kill with impunity. Obama claims cameras on every office would stop this type of brutality, these cops knew they were being filmed and killed him anyway. In...
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  • Unjust to imprison us for crimes we haven’t yet committed
    Once again National and Labour have succumbed to the “law and order” brigade enabling the passage of a Bill imprisoning people for crimes they might commit in the future. The Public Safety (Public Protection Orders) Bill allows the Court to...
    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....
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  • 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...
    Scoop politics
  • 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...
    Scoop politics
  • 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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