web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

On the Pike Report

Written By: - Date published: 10:05 pm, November 5th, 2012 - 99 comments
Categories: Mining, workers' rights - Tags: , ,

I’ve got to say I’m pleased to see the recommendations of the Pike River report and the fact that it looks like the government will be putting them in place.

I’m not so happy about the reaction to the the resignation of Kate Wilkinson. She’s not brave, and her losing the labour portfolio doesn’t change the fact that the government that blocked changes that would quite likely have stopped the pike tragedy from happening.

This is about more than just Kate Wilkinson. It’s about a political and business culture that has turned concerns for health and safety into a “political correctness gone mad” joke – at a cost of the lives and limbs of Kiwi workers.

It’s not a joke I find funny at all. Certainly not as funny as Gerry Brownlee did when the government kicked mine safety changes to touch:

99 comments on “On the Pike Report”

  1. karol 1

    That video of Gerry Brownlee is damning – and very sobering.  I hope he also is held to account for such a cavalier attitude to health and safety.

    • Red Rosa 1.1

      +1

      No doubt there are gaps in Labour’s record up to 2008. But that report, and his rubbishing of it, puts Brownlee right on the spot. He opened Pike River and has been Minister of Energy and Resources (though not demonstrating much of either) since 2008 to date.

      • Fortran 1.1.1

        Trevor, Trevor come out wherever you are !
        Why did you sign off the agreement to the opening of the Pike River Mine when you were Miniister of Labour, if it was unsafe ?

  2. Wilkinson’s resignation is like a slap with a wet bus ticket,a non event,her work load just
    got less, the real heads that should roll are hiding behind her.
    What i can see comming is huge costs being awarded to families of the victims, through
    various sources involved in this,those costs will be massive.
    My thoughts and love go out to the families of the pike river victims.

    • Jackal 2.1

      Yes! Considering the Commissions findings, I think there could well be a claim by the families that National will drag through the courts with even more delay tactics. They won’t simply admit their wrongdoing, as Key’s trying to shift blame solely onto the company yesterday demonstrated.

      Gerry Brownlee thought Labours review on mine safety was a joke… Well nobodies laughing now. In the cold light of day and with the facts at hand, Brownlee should be gone before lunchtime. He won’t be, mainly because John Key is a spineless worm without any intention of holding Ministers to a higher standard.

      I sometimes wonder how these neo-liberal fucktwits live with themselves?

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1

        I sometimes wonder how these neo-liberal fucktwits live with themselves?

        Psychopaths feel neither guilt nor shame.

      • Reagan Cline 2.1.2

        The owners of the Pike River Coal Company are responsible for the lack of safety measures on their property that led to the disaster.

        • OneTrack 2.1.2.1

          Dont spoil a good opportunity to moan about the nacts. I blame Simon Lusk and Crosby Textor.

        • Colonial Viper 2.1.2.2

          Reagan – I agree entirely: it’s time to get the Pike River company directors and to get Whittall on the stand for manslaughter.

          Do you think National will front up and push through measures to allow this?

          • karol 2.1.2.2.1

            Yes.  Finlayson said in the House today that he is considering corproate manslaughter.  But, of course, the government is happy to put all the blame on Pike River.  It shifts the focus from their contribution to the disaster.

            • Colonial Viper 2.1.2.2.1.1

              Ahh. In this case, I think it would actually be suitable and lasting penance for the National Government.

              Such an addition to the Crimes Act (along with another one, Corporate Ecocide) would have far reaching impacts on enforcing corporate responsibility.

              Sentencing must involve custodial sentences, not just wet bus ticket fines.

          • PlanetOrphan 2.1.2.2.2

            From memory there was a lot of talk about the inspectors being given the run around when they were there, so it is likely that a prosecution is in the pipeline, The Gnat’s are gauging the wind at the mo.

            The company has a lot to answer for, but as those inspectors where aware of the issues for a long time prior, the Gnats’ have a large amount of culpibility to answer for as well.

            From memory they were trying to get acces to the mine for a year or more and were “Held” up at the gate etc everytime.

    • North 2.2

      Kate “Gone For A Skate” Wilkinson – it’s a bloody stunt – nothing less.

      Meant to show how seriously and earnestly Dunnokeyo’s Cabinet of Higher Standards takes the concept of “responsibility”. And all these eggs are nutting on about how she did the “honourable” thing.

      Utter bullshit !

  3. xtasy 3

    In early 1992 I left NZ very disillusioned, after 10 years of a struggle here, to work, make a living and trying to survive. Back in Europe I got a real “shock” about how living standards there had improved substantially, while I slaved my butt off in little NZ for next to nothing for years.

    After a brief stint back here, I spent time in Europe until early 1997, then returned, to find challenges again, wages still dirt low, hardly worth making any effort for, I trained, got work and slugged it out. Things were not easy, and as over 3 years not much was gained, I was off to Europe again in mid 2000. I got a job there after months, got other jobs later, but it was not easy. So hearing about the supposed “economic boom” in 2004, I thought that NZ finally got itself sorted and came back with hopes.

    Most hopes were dashed soon, then came the slump and recession, and so it went downhill.

    I had been through the “reforms” of Douglas, supported by slime face Prebble, tolerated by Labour and pushed through relentlessly in late 1980s and early 1990s. I was told by Shipley to put in a vege garden if the cut benefit would not pay my way, so I tried that.

    In the end, I had enough of all the shit. NZ has been a repeated bull-shit story to me and many other migrants. Being a “loyal” sort I mostly stuck it out and struggled on, while many other migrants said: “Nuff of this shit!” So they and many Kiwis moved on.

    Where are we now? We had “reforms” that “liberalised” building standards and led to leaky building issues costing NZ billions for years to come. We had the abolition of safety standards in mining and other areas, costing people bad health, accidents, and in some cases death.

    Now, finally, some idiots up top start to realise, after 29 deaths of innocent, hard and honest working miners died, to face the tunes and accept, they have to improve working conditions in mines again.

    NZ is to many I know a total laughing stock, that is overseas, mostly. It has gone down the liberalisation, freeing up bull-shit road for decades, which made some filthily rich, and which destroyed endless other people’s lives.

    So now some may believe this is a turning point. I am afraid, it is just more “cosmetics” by a rat bag, rotten, rich capitalist elite class serving servile merchant government, that has NO soul, NO morals, NO integrity, and that NEVER should have been allowed to run the show in this country. I am bloody angry, and I am NOT ALONE!

    • thatguynz 3.1

      +1000
       
      No you are not alone and you are also very very correct.  People need to realise that this malaise isn’t a left/right issue – both “sides” of the house sip from the same Kool-Aid…  This is a perpetuation of what has been proven to be a very very nasty orthodoxy (albeit highly successful for those that were meant to benefit) that values wealth over people and profit over morals and ethics.
       
      People wonder about the erosion of society and humanity over the past thirty years yet can’t make the mental leap to determining either how and why it has occurred, much less potential options to resolve it.
       
      I truly love my country.  I have no desire to leave and take advantage of the current favourable conditions of out nearest neighbour – god knows that they are on more of a slippery slope than us only they haven’t quite figured that out yet.  I want nothing more than to see this country return to a place where my children can grow up and raise their future children in a peaceful, congenial and fair society that values them as individuals more than it values them as consumers. 
       
      Utopian? – youbetcha.  Realistic? – probably not with any of the existing talking heads within the house, on either “side”.
       
      Just my 2c..

  4. asd 4

    The ironic thing here is that Jenny Shipley, Ruth Richardson and Jim Bolger along with the rest of the early 90s National Governments cabinet are all liable and should be made culpable and accountable for the changes they instigated and legislated for that deregulated the mining industry and relaxed mining inspections in the Labour department at that time. Helen Clarke is also implicitly responsible too for not tightening up the Labour departments regulations when she took over. Kate Wilkinson is just the “fall guy” so it looks as if someone has taken responsibility. Once again past (and current) neo-liberal policy makers take NZ down to new lows.

    • xtasy 4.1

      tarrring and feathering comes to mind, for all the gang(s), starting there, including Douglas, Prebble (traitors), now Brash, Key and consorts, what a great carnival atmosphere within a new, modern day Queen Street “riot” would that be? Even MSM may come out and take a glimpse!

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      I can only reiterate what I said earlier: If a government passes laws that results in predictable deaths then they should be done for murder. It really is as simple as that and none of this resigning to get away with it either.

      Time to have an accountable government.

      • Colonial Viper 4.2.1

        Indeed. And if a private sector firm structures things in a similarly predictably harmful way their directors should be done too.

      • insider 4.2.2

        That’s a Ken Ring like nonsense. Anyone loon or vested interest can ‘predict’ deaths and then claim vindication if something, even if unrelated, happens. We’d never have a minister of transport or health on that measure.

        • Jackal 4.2.2.1

          What you should have said is that it’s less likely any government would pass or remove legislation that reduced safety in the workplace. The fact that they could be held personally responsible for their decisions would hopefully be more compelling than the funds industry lobbyists throw around.

        • Colonial Viper 4.2.2.2

          That’s a Ken Ring like nonsense.

          Sorry mate, you’re excusing gross negligence here, expecting competence and thoroughness when lives are on the line is not superstition. Asshole.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.2.2.3

          If the government has been told by the relevant ministry and/or independent source that indications are that the law changes that they’re contemplating could result in more death and they put them through anyway and then such a death occurs they should be held accountable.

        • karol 4.2.2.4

          Someone in the Urgent Debate today – probably Andrew Little –  said, when businesses try to cut safety corners, they are more likely to do so on things that would cause occasional accidents.  i.e. they are less likely to cut back on things that would be noticeable in accidents daily.

    • mike e 4.3

      Doug Kidd , Bill Birch and Mad Max Bradford should all face manslaughter charges as they were the labour ministers who did away with mine safety!

      • insider 4.3.1

        But mine safety in terms of fatalities improved throughout the 90s and 2000s

        • mike e 4.3.1.1

          Thats because most underground mines were closed, and most of the underground coal mines were operated by solid energy which have a much higher standard and experience!
          Shifting the blame is the name of your game!

        • Colonial Viper 4.3.1.2

          But mine safety in terms of fatalities improved throughout the 90s and 2000s

          No it didn’t; if it had we wouldn’t have the problems which led to Pike River deaths.

          Just because you can’t see the house rotting underway underneath doesn’t mean its not happening.

  5. AmaKiwi 5

    Our system of government is dysfunctional. Elected dictatorship is the root cause of the Pike River disaster.

    Dictator Jim Bolger (with Ruth Richardson) came to power in 1990 and 2 years later scrapped health and safety regulations. Our dysfunctional system provided no way we could stop them. Trying to reason with them was pointless. The dictatorship of the day is all powerful. In 2008, a review found a need for major improvements in mine safety. But a year later we have a new dictator who ignores the recommendations. The dictator ignores workers’ protests.

    The dictatorship of the day acts with impunity, trashing whatever it wants. The costs are enormous. The current dictators have decimated the Dept. of Conservation. Tens of millions of dollars of damage has been done, much of it irreparable. They staged a coup d’etat, destroying local government for 1.5 million Aucklanders. They took control over Christchurch.

    Our so-called “prime ministers” are elected dictators. Labour dictators have also done whatever they pleased and the public be damned. The fault is not with particular parties, it is with the system that gives them unbridled power.

    Each new dictatorship believes its divinely inspired ideology requires it to tear apart our school system, health system, local bodies, and everything else 61 wankers take a fancy to re-inventing.

    We must have a more intelligent, more democratic form of government. If Parliament passes a bill the people should be able to veto the bill in a referendum. Under veto referendums, in 1992 miners and workers would have had a chance to collect enough signatures to force a referendum. Then they could take their case to the voters, to ask the people to reject the cuts to health and safety made by Dictators Bolger and Richardson.

    Veto referendums is my suggestion. When parliament passes a law, we, the people, have 3 months in which to collect signatures from 2% of the voters. If we get those signatures, a referendum must be held to decide if the bill will become law. The referendum is BINDING. If we vote “no” the bill is dead. If we vote “yes” it becomes law.

    If we vote “no” asset sales, the sales are stopped. WE should be able to decide if Christchurch loses control over its planning, what changes will be made to MMP, if pubic public lands will be mined, if the holiday highway will be built, if government departments are put into a blender for Stephen Joyce to destroy, if our soldiers go to Afghanistan.

    This is our God damn country, NOT theirs. 61 wankers should not have dictatorial control over 4.4 million people.

    Veto referendums.

    [lprent: fixed typo. ]

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      The fault is not with particular parties, it is with the system that gives them unbridled power.

      QFT

      • aerobubble 5.1.1

        Today, in the house, Mallard asked why National had shelved a mines inquiry on entering government, that would have return mine check officers to mines. The Attorney General
        grew laughter when he replied, Labour had failed to do anything about the matter.

        This isn’t about power, its about ethics, the governing party, on the day a minister resigned a portfolio, still doesn’t get the gravity, that 29 died due to deregulation. That deregulation they as a party espoused that led to leak homes costing billions to our economy, to 115? who died in
        CTV building due allegedly to a lax attitude to checking credentials of a civil engineer (buildings
        destroyed by earthquake should not collapse entirely).

        No, this all about the Key government view.

        Sociopaths get jobs too, indebted managers are working today
        across industries, a civil engineer has even been known
        to fake their credentials (CTV), its astonishing that Key cannot
        imagine that putting total faith in trusting industry to protect
        safety employees because ‘companies don’t want to lose lives
        and profitability’ is the worse type of cop out since its
        obvious even competent ministers miss problems and so resign,
        individuals do put profit over safety, people do make profit
        pledges to win elections, or contracts to build world class mines,
        and even sociopath do allegedly fake civil engineering degrees that
        are use to construct a building that killed people.

        Yet still Key endorses the lax lazy attitude it’ll be okay to allow
        industries across the nation to put safety over profit.

        But worse, its not the first disaster in industry due to lax regulation,
        that implemented worker protections removed by previous National
        governments at the pleadings of industry for efficiencies needs.

        When asked why his predecessor had scraped the union check officers
        in mining investigated by the last Labour government, the attorney
        general groom laugher from his over back benchers when he replied
        Labour had been ineffective. 14:40pm today in the House.

        Sorry, but they bleeding don’t care about the country.

        I was watching the excellent Scots History program on Choice TV,
        about how Scots having suffered from distance unresponsive governments
        from Westminister, forced out by clan ‘political correct’ over lords, left
        Scotland forever, to NZ, to Oz, to Canada and America. VERY MUCH like our
        currenct skilled crisis.

        The hands off government of Key, the lax lazy ethics, of trusting executives
        to be perfect managers over unions and workers, selecting winners if you will,
        is core to the problem, Key doesn’t believe he can do any wrong, the market
        will clean up after him (funny that, I thought clean up was a profit thing not
        a social cleanser.).

        • RedLogix 5.1.1.1

          I was watching the excellent Scots History program on Choice TV,
          about how Scots having suffered from distance unresponsive governments
          from Westminister, forced out by clan ‘political correct’ over lords, left
          Scotland forever, to NZ, to Oz, to Canada and America. VERY MUCH like our
          currenct skilled crisis.

          Yes, both of us watching it last night made exactly the same connection.

          Next question. Why do New Zealanders keep voting for governments that act against their own interests? (And this is not a phenomenon confined to this country.)

          1980. A crucial date. I believe it was when the hidden political persuaders mastered their dark art.

          • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1.1

            The Left never evolved an appropriate or effective response. We were also short of well resourced, articulate leaders willing to stand for principle and for the people against corporate money.

            Even 30 years after the onset of neoliberalism when we know in detail both in theory and in practice why neoliberalism and free market capitalism is a total failure – the Left still has no strategy or ability to take its message to the wider public.

            White collar managers on $80K pa have been fooled into thinking that they are not really working class; blue collar workers on $40K pa have been taught how to despise those who are unemployed – even though they themselves may be in next months dole queue.

            The ethos of fuck you and your family Jack, because me and my family are doing OK is prevalent.

            • RedLogix 5.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes but why? You’ve posited this as a moral failure … on a mass scale.

              Part of me still connects this with the rapid decline of the non-fundamentalist churches in this time period. Cause or effect? I’m not sure. But there is no doubt that the core values which drove the reform and socialist movements of a century ago had their genesis in the social principles they were reading in their Bibles. They truly understood that they were indeed their brother’s keeper.

              Now there are many good reasons why the Churches have lost so much ground, much of it their own fault. But it’s come at a price … the ‘fuck you I’m alright Jack ethos’ is what we’ve been left with.

              Nor has science filled this moral vacuum.

              • karol

                Part of me still connects this with the rapid decline of the non-fundamentalist churches in this time period.
                 
                But the US has a load of fundies who are also into individualistic capitalism.  I think it has more to do with power of the elite to influence media, popular discourse and politics.  And the promise of continually new shiny consumer things to own, keeps people distracted.

                • Colonial Viper

                  power of the elite to influence media, popular discourse and politics.

                  Of course, these are also key parts of the puzzle. The elite have the resources to try multiple angles and multiple combinations, to keep what works and improve and change what doesn’t.

                  You can see it in how CT evolves National Party spin lines over the first 72 hours of some major event or crisis unfolding.

                  The guys at the top of the right wing pile aren’t necessarily that smart or hard working – but they have the money and the institutions to keep legions of very smart, very hard working people on call, on their behalf.

              • Colonial Viper

                RL – people need beliefs in their life. If it wasn’t belief in the church or in community, then it was in consumerism, free markets or ego power.

                Yes but why? You’ve posited this as a moral failure … on a mass scale.

                More like moral ignorance. Once it becomes normalised – indeed, idolised – to pursue wealth at the cost of all else, even those around you, the societal norm is to participate and do the same.

                The typical upper middle class dinner party in the 2000’s…chatting away about all the best ways to negatively gear your property investment portfolio, avoid taxes, the next up and coming suburb to buy into, when the right time to flip a property on was, etc.

                Discussion on the moral questions of today’s society and economy? Nah, all just rats in the maze trying to impress other rats.

          • aerobubble 5.1.1.1.2

            Murdoch. Cheap Oil fueled a false sense of ability amongst managers, that they were making the right decisions. Murdoch-Thatcher abstracted this movement into modern neoliberalism.

            Now we’ve hit peak oil the market signals can’t be hidden behind media-government blather.
            Basically our own public life has been saturated by turd blossoms.

    • prism 5.2

      Amakiwi
      Good points. Needs to be said then repeated till understanding is reached by all or nearly all. 80/20 would do fine.

    • KJT 5.3

      http://kjt-kt.blogspot.co.nz/2011/06/democracy-recap.html

      http://kjt-kt.blogspot.co.nz/2011/10/democracy-repris.html

      It would be nice if we had Democracy.

      Like these people. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1435383/How-direct-democracy-makes-Switzerland-a-better-place.html

      Unfortunately we have the peculiar arrogance of politicians, who think that 61 people have the right to make decisions, that the rest of us have to suffer for, without any regard to our wishes or taking any responsibility.

      It applies to both the left and right. Both would rather be dictators for three years than allow us to make our own decisions.

      As NRT said once. “Even if it is the wrong decision it is ours to make”.
      Though, evidence from countries with a real degree of democracy, and from business studies, strangely enough, shows that, on the whole, the more people involved in the decision making the better.

      Representative democracy is a contradiction in terms. There is no such thing. Being graciously allowed to change our dictators every three years, by vote, is no different from the banana republics, who at least had the satisfaction of shooting the last lot of incompetents.

  6. AmaKiwi 6

    Correction: The second to the last paragraph should say, “if public lands will be mined,” not “pubic” lands.

    It’s late. The mind wanders. (Freud is smiling.)

  7. fender 7

    As that baffoon Brownlee illustrates in that clip, this pack of Nact children are unable to engage in any serious debate about anything. The way they conduct themselves is pathetic, they seem to have this strange notion that governing is a chance to play standup comedy. They are clearly deluded if they think anybody believes they are either clever or funny, or will ever have a future in the entertainment industry.

    It’s time these batshit Key clowns were marched out of the beehive, taken down to the comedy stage and presented with their rotton tomatoes and other refuse they so greatly deserve.

  8. vto 8

    Key – what a pathetic effort at answering Campbell Live’s probing questions. Key had not a clue.

    Wilkinson – good riddance. Fuck off back to your farm and continue your flawed ways out of the way.

    Brownlee – Buffoon. His attitude in that vid displays perfectly the deadly flaws in National party unthinking.

    English and Carter – evil doers in stealing NZ’s resources for their voters through tyranny and lack of democracy.

    Government – fucking fools. Do not trust them to run the rules and do not trust them to set the rules.

    Authority – in cahoots with the above lot. Fuck them and their dangerous and cavalier attitudes to law and society.

    shrink to your own smaller communities folks… there aint no trust, competence or safety out there in the wider nation…

  9. karol 9

    Drill it, mine it, sell it Gerry Brownlee – champion of deregualtion of the mining industry.  
     
     
     
     
     
     

  10. Tracey 10

    Gerry Brownlee has some actual complicity in this, to my knowledge Wilkinson doesn’t. So, throw another female to the wolves National… Strange that Bennett gets to stay…. no blokes want that job in National???

    This all contradicts the notion being peddled that it’s so hard to start mines in NZ. Labour let this one start, Gerry opened it, and the company was left to do it how it liked. Hardly hard. Then, it went under when the times got hard. Whittal is not lacking for work… like the banks, this is just a blip, business as usual soon enough.

    • weka 10.1

      Bennett is for all intents and purposes a man. That’s why she has so much power currently. The fact that she is physically a woman works in NACTs favour. Nothing like dressing up power and corruption in a woman’s body. It confuses people about what women’s power is and makes out that there is no other way of being. It’s perfect they put her in charge of welfare. This is the exact same dynamic as Shipley, Richardson, Thatcher… tools of the patriarchy (in both senses of the word).
       
      Not sure about Wilkinson. Someone commented yesterday that she had direct involvement in decisions that lead to the disaster.

  11. ianmac 11

    Brownlie-Finland + Brownlie-Underground Mining Safety= A really funny guy.

  12. ianmac 12

    What was the date of the 60minutes program?

  13. prism 13

    Kate Wilkinson resigning can be looked at from a number of viewpoints. One is to ask how often do ministers take responsibility for what they do when it has bad effects? There is no real sanction for them carrying out some policy that will kill people, or allow financial predators, or the government itself, to strip people of their savings.

    So Kate W has thought – why should I be the patsy? It is for polynesian ministers to be taken to task, and then to Court, for mishandling the role of wise, trusted agent for the people, not me.

    • ianmac 13.1

      Prism “It is for polynesian ministers to be taken to task, and then to Court, for mishandling the role of wise, trusted agent for the people, not me.”
      I don’t get it. Polynesian???

  14. prism 14

    ianmac
    I was thinking of politicians being held to account and Taito Phillip Field came to mind.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taito_Phillip_Field

    He was held to account but it doesn’t happen very often, and I did think that there might be more inclination for the hounds to sniff out certain targets rather than others with wider influence and bigger pockets.

  15. Fortran 15

    After the next election there will be no more mining, of any sort, in New Zealand – so why worry.
    Russel will see to it.

    • Na Russel wants factories and Kiwi Saver – which equals growth, no mining no growth

    • Tracey 15.2

      yea Fortran what a bastard that Normnan is, wanting workplaces to be safe for people… doesn’t he know it impacts the bottomline…. oh wait, having killed 27 people impacted the bottom line quite a lot for pike river coal too.

      I was in greymouth the day the suits from Pike River were in the pub celebrating the go ahead for the mine… I wonder when the last time they stepped intot hat pub was?

  16. Jenny 16

    The coal powered steam roller crushes all before it.

    “Race for coal production exposed Pike River workers to risks” Scoop News.

    When it comes to the huge amounts of money that can be made from mining coal for export, the sickly smell of corruption is beginning to permeate the State

    As corruption and greed effectively killed these workers, corruption and greed is also required to kill our planet.

    The political Corruption pressure and greed at the highest levels of the State on behalf of the coal industry is starting to form an obvious pattern.

    As Solid Energy hires private investigators and agent provocateurs with taxpayers money to spy and infiltrate environmental groups. (even under a Labour administration)

    As the high court has ruled ‘out of order’ any testimony relating to climate change in the Denniston hearings.

    As a government department department charged with protecting the environment orders their staff not to be involved in any voluntary scientific investigation of the Denniston Plateau even in their own time.

    DOC staff banned from ‘Denniston bio-blitz’

    The First two examples of corruption in the State speak for themselves. In the last it might be asked:

    What legal, or moral right have DOC got, to order staff not attend a voluntary “Bio-blitz” even as private citizens. Even threatening them with disciplinary action, (possibly resulting in dismissal), if they do the investigative work that they are supposedly paid to do?

    The bioblitz will involve volunteers and scientists scouring the plateau to create a snapshot of its animal inhabitants and ideally discover new species, before a planned 200ha opencast coalmine goes ahead.

    DoC staff had been advised by head office that it “would not be appropriate for them to attend the bioblitz”, said Buller area manager Bob Dickson.

    He had not received any negative feedback from staff about the directive.

    DoC spokesman Rory Newsam said because one of the aims of the event was to encourage public pressure on DoC to decline Bathurst Resources’ mining application, it was inappropriate for staff to attend, even in a private capacity.

    What on Earth?

    I didn’t know that interests of Bathurst resources were of any concern to DOC, surely their first priority is to protecting the natural environment?

    So is DOC an independent body of the state concerned with the protection of the natural environment, or a government and private sector stooge?

    The corrupt standover tactics employed by DOC against their staff on behalf of Bathhurst’s application to mine Denniston couldn’t be more blatant.

    “As public servants, it is inappropriate for DoC staff to be involved in an activity that forms part of a clearly stated campaign to change Government policy and we have simply reminded staff of this fact,” said Mr Newsam.

    The political affiliations of DOC workers in their own time should be their own business. And if it doesn’t affect their work, not a cause for disciplinary action, in itself.

    Would these threats be acted on if DOC workers did volunteer work for the environment in their own time for the Greens, or even the Labour Party?

    After all, these organisations also “campaign to change government policy”

  17. karol 17

    Darien Fenton got an Urgent Debate on the Pike River Report in the House this afternoon. She has referred to that Gerry Brownlee performance in the House as shown in the video above.  She sounds quite emotional in her speech.

    The cost-cutting NAct government denied inspectors the money for travel to inspect mines.

    A long litany of damning behaviour by our current government.

    • Banks is speaking and has been talking about people he had employed who essentially caused the accidents.

      He is obviously operating on Planet Banks today. 

      • karol 17.1.1

        Banks made himself look pretty clueless as a businessman/employer.  His sole strategy to H&S seemed to be to tell his employees once a practice was wrong, then be surprised that they didn’t get the message. 

  18. joe90 18

    Interesting to compare the outcomes following Pike River killings and the methane explosion in the Upper Big Branch mine which killed 29 men.

    The then superintendent of the Upper Big Branch mine has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the federal government and despite the company paying a $210 million settlement with more court action likely there are calls for the CEO and board of the mine owners to be prosecuted.

    Whittall will probably be shown the wet bus ticket while Dow and his board ride off into the sunset.

    • vto 18.1

      exactly joe90, where is John Dow?

      What has he got to say on the report?

      Has the chairman of the company made any statement?

      Is John Dow hiding like a chicken shit coward?

      Why is he not fronting?

      Why is he hiding?

      His company committed manslaughter.

  19. fisiani 19

    The opposition comments in Parliament today are absolutely disgusting. Exploiting the grief of 29 families for political gain is just disgusting.

    • Colonial Viper 19.1

      Oh Fisi save us your crock tears.

    • joe90 19.2

      Yeah, terrible that a government be taken to task over the cancellation of a review that would have saved lives.

    • McFlock 19.3

      Manage to keep your face straight as you typed it, fis?

    • karol 19.4

      And Finlayson & Banks, not accepting the failure of deregulation and their role in it is disgraceful.  Banks gave a load of anecdotal flannel about his experiences as a restaurant employer.  Videos here.
       
      Mallard said that the 1990 changes weere wrong and that the changes his government made to the laws in 2003 were not good enough, as a subsequent accident showed.  That is why they were working on tightening the regulations. He was very critical of Wilkinson’s rejection of the changes they and others recommended.
       
      Andrew Little gave an excellent speech with gravitas and was well-informed.  He talked of the need to re-empower unions, change the laws and improve funding for the check inspectors.
       
      I’m just watchinga recording of Brownlee crying crocodile tears for the dead and bereaved.  Darien Fenton.

      • mickysavage 19.4.1

        Aye I was proud to be a Labour Party member today.  Andrew Little gave a great speech.  His comment about how he turned up on the coast and saw 5 PR spin doctors for the company there explained why the MSM thought that Whittall was a great guy.  He should have been pilloried.

        And (cough cough) Trevor Mallard gave a great speech.  He very gently but directly addressed the Government and the decision to shelve the review of mine safety that Labour had started.  It was introspective, he wondered if he should have done more, but it also skewered the Government.

        On ya Trev. 

        • Colonial Viper 19.4.1.1

          :) Yeah nice work from Labour today. Thumbs up team.

        • vto 19.4.1.2

          Yep, just listened to Andrew Little’s speech. He made a very powerful point when he asked where the NZ business community was in commenting on Pike River and the state of health & safety in the workplace. Andrew noted that everytime workers rights are attacked or reduced the business community comes out beating its drum loud and clear, and yet here when 29 of the business community’s workers are killed dead they are dead quiet. Disgusting.

          Where is Business New Zealand?

          Where is John Dow?

          Chicken-shit disgusting cowards.

          One thing Andrew didn’t get right I think was he said this is not a time for blame. In fact it is exactly the time for blame. It is the time to point the finger at the people, at the organisations, at the policies and philosophies. The evidence has been heard and the conclusion reached. Blame needs to be sheetd home at some point and this its it. And everybody sees where the blame lies…

    • Tracey 19.5

      I recall when you wanted no investigators at that mine immediately following the explosion Fisiani… that was disgusting too apparently. However, had that not happened most of the documentation around this would have been destroyed. That you shamelessly feign to purport on the familie’s behalf to say what is exploitation ill behooves you. What about the company that exploited 29 men to death???

  20. Dv 20

    In Qtime HT NRT
    Rt Hon JOHN KEY: I think that is a ridiculous statement. That is saying that a company is prepared to risk the deaths of its employees and the reputation of the company for the sole purpose of making money, and even from the most hardened socialist I find that something difficult to believe. In the case of the Pike River mine, let us argue just for a moment that the Pike River Coal company was halfway through its mining operations, and was a successful operation that was operating well. An explosion of the magnitude that took place back in 2010 would have then completely and utterly collapsed that company. That would have made no economic sense to anyone.

    HUH
    I thought the mine DID explode and the company DID collapse.

    What a really really weird comment.

    • karol 20.1

      Here: yes it’s part of  the government putting all the blame on the company, except for where they can say Laour was just as bad.

      • Red Rosa 20.1.1

        Absolutely. NRT is worth ten opposition MPs’ by himself.

        http://norightturn.blogspot.co.nz/

        I’d have thought that the leader of a party which began at Blackball, not far from Pike River, and is himself well distant from any possible blame, might have shown some indignation…fury…gumption….but not on TV3 tonight.

        Kevin Haigh deserves credit for provoking such a typical slippery Key response.

        and Trevor Mallard also…said what needed to be said.

        • karol 20.1.1.1

          Excellent post by NRT.  Typical once-over-lightly from TV3 and Garner.  He avoided mentioning the strong criticism by the opposition of Brownlee, Key and Wilkinson’s past behaviour that supported the inadequate regulation of mines.
           
          Garner was all congrats to Key for managing the situation so it’s put to bed quickly by sacking, having Wilkinson resign her portfolio.  According to Garner this leaves the opposition without a target. He said that the oposition didn’t call for Wilkinson’s total resignation from cabinet because ex-Labour government ministers are equally to blame – that’s Garner’s interpretation.
           
          But the opposition have bigger fish to fry than spending all their time on attacking the out-of-reach Wilkinson – she’s a bit of a scapegoat anyway. Instead in Qu time today, Shearer attacks the lax attitude to health and safety in Key’s cabinet.  Peters attacks the failure of government policy.  Hague attacks the neoliberal ideology of deregulation.

          Was Garner there or did he just get some junior to feed him the edited highlights?
           

        • Draco T Bastard 20.1.1.2

          Actual NRT link: Utterly, horribly wrong

      • Red Rosa 20.1.2

        Absolutely. NRT is worth ten opposition MPs’ by himself.

        http://norightturn.blogspot.co.nz/

        But I’d have thought that the leader of a party which began at Blackball, not far from Pike River, and is himself well distant from any possible blame, might have shown some indignation…fury…gumption….but not on TV3 tonight.

        That debate showed up some true colours.

        Kevin Haigh deserves credit for provoking such a typical slippery Key response. In fact, judging by the look of Key recently, he seems to be losing it big time.

        Andrew Little, Trevor Mallard also…said what needed to be said.

        • Colonial Viper 20.1.2.1

          On Planet Key, free market companies safeguard employees lives, but in NZ they haven’t and many people have died.

      • felix 20.1.3

        karol, did you notice Key accidentally admitting that his govt, as regulator, is responsible for the disaster? I nearly tripped over when I heard it.

        Kevin Hague: Does he agree that the deregulation of occupational health and safety that occurred in the 1990s was the major factor in creating an environment where management at Pike River were able to ignore workers’ calls to improve safety; if not, why not?

        Rt Hon JOHN KEY: No. Let us take a step back. The primary responsibility of any company, when it comes to health and safety issues, rests with that company, so a good employer is always going to make sure that their employees are safe in the workplace. The role of a regulator is someone to ensure that the company is fulfilling its obligations, not to fulfil those obligations for the company. The company itself must do that. In the case of Pike River Coal, the company utterly failed.

    • gnomic 20.2

      ‘That is saying that a company is prepared to risk the deaths of its employees and the reputation of the company for the sole purpose of making money . . . .’

      Thus spake smirking batshit weasel man. I had thought he was not very bright, but this seems to be proof that John Key is an idiot as well as a knave. I expect we can safely assume that he has never read Upton Sinclair’s *The Jungle*.”Radical action must be taken to do away with the efforts of arrogant and selfish greed on the part of the capitalist.” So said Theodore Roosevelt and he was no fan of Upton Sinclair. Clearly this failed comedian has never read anything by B. Traven on the suffering of plantation workers.

      I expect too the weasel has never done any hard dangerous manual labour – perhaps someone can correct me on this point? Has he ever driven an old truck with no seatbelts through the Karangahake Gorge by night to make the company some money? Has he ever staggered under the weight of a sheet of gib across a building site? Has he got a clue about what the workers do?

    • Tracey 20.3

      “That is saying that a company is prepared to risk the deaths of its employees and the reputation of the company for the sole purpose of making money”

      The reort concluded they did just that. As for his suggestion that companies can’t be “stupid” he must have already forgotten the GFC and the financial industry meltdown.

  21. RedLogix 21

    The person most probably culpable in the political sense is Gerry Brownlee.

    Pike River Coal was conceived and permitted under Labour as a development project. The reasonable goal was to drive an exploratory shaft into the seam in order to determine what conditions they found and what would be required to turn it into a safe and productive mine.That was achieved.

    Even so plenty of people had sufficient cause for concern about the industry in general to push very hard for a major review and to push for a substantive re-regulation. But the new National govt in 2008 was entirely set against such a review. It was mocked in Parliament and dumped.

    More significantly the new government had made developing the mining industry a big priority. To the extent that tens of thousands of New Zealanders turned out in the biggest demonstrations since the Iraq war to protest the proposed desecration of our Conservation estate.

    This is why it was so important to Brownlee as Minister of Energy and Resources to open Pike River as a for the showcase the potential of the industry. Yet Pike was never ready to be a production mine. It was neither technically safe, nor was it fiscally feasible for a company with no other cash flow to develop to the point where it might have been.

    I believe that the cover-up that Bernie Monk and the families have encountered is all about deflecting attention from Brownlee’s role in this disaster. Even the most minimal, the lightest of regulatory oversight should have prevented Pike River from being turned into a production mine. I suggest that if someone looked hard enough there will be evidence of Ministerial interference. Interference to ensure, to enable the mine to proceed … against all reason.

    I suggest that given this government’s track record (Sky City? Snapper? ) this is a very plausible scenario.

    • Colonial Viper 21.1

      Brownlee has been keeping a very low profile. But in a very safe National seat, why would he be worth a convoluted protective strategy and expending political capital on?

      • RedLogix 21.1.1

        Because I suggest that the level of culpability is un-survivable, and might well take down Key as well.

    • Draco T Bastard 21.2

      That would require asking the right questions of the right departments via OIA.

  22. infused 22

    Interesting to note a few manufacturing places I do work for are now big on health and safety. Lots of updates going on around factories in loom of a big osh shakeup.

    • RedLogix 22.1

      And I guess that has to one of the big questions around Pike River. I’m personally very close to three people who are senior H&S people. All three of them have repeatedly expressed astonishment that this was allowed to happen. Even under the current regime.

      Even the most elementary processes where not followed. Such a comprehensive failure stinks of more than hubris and negligence.

  23. Bruce 23

    I totally agree with many views here. I cannot fathom the total failure that lead to 29 dead people on the job. China occasionally has mining disasters – it’s kind of expected of them in a way. Here we are year 2000+. We know what lead to this and many people know the timeline regarding the National Party and their efforts to cut costs (at least Labour tried to do something while last in power). Brownlee is a disgrace and so is Wilkinson.

    *The Pike bosses did what they did because they could get away with it*

    This is a prime example of why we have laws and also people (people with power) who enforce those laws – this is done through regular audits/inspections. There are far too many people getting injured and killed on the job in NZ at the moment and no job is worth dying for. Employers need to lift their game big time, I also concede that workers need to think about what they are doing, stop cutting corners (to brown-nose in many cases), and be prepared to say “No” to the boss if they think a task is unsafe. This brings up the issue of the 90 day no rights law and the issue that working people feel they have to make a good impression at any cost, especially in the first few days of the job.

  24. Bruce 24

    Furthermore, I propose there should be ‘No Go’ areas for politicians – absolutely enshrined areas of legislation that cannot be changed (particularly in the area of health and safety law). Cutting costs should not result in deaths.

  25. Tracey 25

    A mining consultant yesterday said he has NEVER seen this environment in a mine in a developed country. he then stated he has worked in Turkey and Russia(regarded as developing) and doesn’t see it there.

    This had to be wilful and deliberate policy of the company. The DOL turned a blind eye OR was denied funding to keep watch.

    I’m still waiting for the LIbertarianz to explain how in a fully derugulated society this type of company would act better than this.

    • mike e 25.1

      libitarianz answer would be there would be no mining because the number of miners dying would put people off doing mine work!

      • vto 25.1.1

        Libertarians and similar ilk are sheepishly quiet about this because it is like a blinding light to their philosophy.

        Hello Rodney Hide?

        Hello Roger Douglas?

        What say you of the cause of the death of these 29 men and its implications for your political philosophy?

        We hear nothing because they have no answer. Their brainwaves have been evaporated by this blast of blistering light.

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • @akltransport – Please fill in a form
    Social media has become an important tool for many organisations in how they engage with their customers. It’s become a tool for both marketing and customer service, and there are a number of examples organisations who do it right. Some...
    Transport Blog | 21-10
  • Alpaca Metropolitan – On The Left Special!
    ...
    On the Left | 21-10
  • Video Against Poverty
    Schoolgirls in Kalimpong, West Bengal, India.  Photo / Julie Zhu This is week two of my givealittle.co.nz campaign Video Against Poverty and I'm more than 2/3 of the way to my goal of $2600.00.  This has been totally unexpected and is a really...
    Notes from the edge | 21-10
  • Why I’m Left
    I’m Left all the way down to my bones. My bone marrow is made up of lots of microscopic Karl Marx mustaches. It’s partly why I’m so curmudgeonly. When I was born I was brought home from the hospital to...
    Tangerina | 21-10
  • Don’t cough on me
    It used to be acceptable to go to work or travel with a cough or the flu. That’s been changing over the last 10-20 years, and people who cough and sniffle in public are increasingly treated like people who smoke in the...
    Lance Wiggs | 21-10
  • Some might just come by train.
        As a Waikato girl by birth, Aucklander by nature, and living in Hamilton by choice, I’ve long being a supporter a regular train gig chugging the willing and the weary between the hustle and pace of Auckland and...
    Politically Corrected | 21-10
  • Why I’m Left: happiness, solidarity and community
    (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think about why they’re On The Left, and what the next three years holds for the left, the government, and New Zealand.) I’m Left all the way down to my...
    On the Left | 21-10
  • Curiosity’s historic comet photo
    Photo Credit: Curiosity on Mars – NASA Rover Opportunity Views Comet Near Mars. According to NASA: NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity captured images of a comet passing much closer to Mars than any previous known comet flyby of Earth or Mars....
    Open Parachute | 21-10
  • Ireland in the 21st century – Christchurch WEA course, Sat, Nov 1, 1-4.30...
    One of Ireland’s many ‘ghost estates’, built during the ‘Celtic Tiger’ fake-boom; these buildings are a haunting symbol of early 21st century Ireland Saturday 1 November, 1 – 4.30 pm The twenty-first century began with, officially at least, a great...
    Redline | 21-10
  • Ireland in the 21st century – Christchurch WEA course, Sat, Nov 1, 1-4.30...
    One of Ireland’s many ‘ghost estates’, built during the ‘Celtic Tiger’ fake-boom; these buildings are a haunting symbol of early 21st century Ireland Saturday 1 November, 1 – 4.30 pm The twenty-first century began with, officially at least, a great...
    Redline | 21-10
  • Gough Whitlam: 1916 – 2014
    A Mighty Totara has Fallen: Australian Prime Minister Gough Whitlam paying his respects to the late NZ PM, Rt. Hon. Norman Kirk, during his Lying-in-State at Parliament Buildings, Wellington. Wednesday, 4th September, 1974. (Photo by John Miller.) A BIG MAN IN EVERY...
    Bowalley Road | 21-10
  • DAY OF ACTION 8 NOVEMBER 2014
    Auckland, Hamilton, Raglan, Tauranga, Rotorua, Gisborne, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Levin,Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin, Invercargill. Need a reason to march on 8 November? Check out Professor Jane Kelsey’s latest blog. Updates on what is on where: Auckland – speakers include...
    NZ – Not for sale | 21-10
  • The Security Council and free trade
    Last week, New Zealand won a seat on the United Nations Security Council. And over the weekend the New Zealand business community made it clear what they wanted from the position:A business director says New Zealand's new seat on the...
    No Right Turn | 21-10
  • World News Brief, Tuesday October 21
    Top of the AgendaU.S. Army Drops Weapons to Kurdish Forces...
    Pundit | 20-10
  • National’s failure on housing
    A year ago National passed the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act 2013. In his speech introducing the bill, then-Housing Minister Nick Smith laid down some clear targets: It is an ambitious agreement, and sets out a plan to...
    No Right Turn | 20-10
  • ECAN, Fed Farmers and Dairy NZ – Plotting to reduce water quality
    What does National’s resounding election win mean for our rivers? As we found in our review of the Government’s water quality framework, we have serious reasons to doubt their commitment to ‘maintain or improve our waterways’. Our concerns are growing...
    Gareth’s World | 20-10
  • A new left-leaning blog
    I am pleased to announce the launch of a new blogsite catering for those who want something more than the fare currently being offered by left-leaning sites like The Daily Blog and The Standard....
    Imperator Fish | 20-10
  • Ebola and the criminal passivity of the Great Powers
    The presidents of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, three Ebola-stricken West African nations, made urgent pleas for money, doctors and hospital beds.  The UN Ebola envoy said 20 times more was needed to counter the epidemic.  The U.S. director of...
    Redline | 20-10
  • New Zealand, ISIL, and suspicious behaviour
    The government has announced a review of how New Zealand might deal with foreign fighters in the future in response to what is happening currently in Iraq and Syria. There are some interesting titbits in the press release in terms...
    On the Left | 20-10
  • Out of Zionism: interview with Israeli anti-Zionist historian Ilan Pappé
    One of our links is to the excellent Le Mur des Oreilles site, which contains interviews with Palestinian figures, Israeli anti-Zionists and a range of cultural and political figures talking about the Palestinian cause and the importance of actions such...
    Redline | 20-10
  • Out of Zionism: interview with Israeli anti-Zionist historian Ilan Pappé
    One of our links is to the excellent Le Mur des Oreilles site, which contains interviews with Palestinian figures, Israeli anti-Zionists and a range of cultural and political figures talking about the Palestinian cause and the importance of actions such...
    Redline | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    frogblog | 20-10
  • Gordon Campbell on the latest TPP leaks
    The release by Julian Assange on Wikileaks of the draft Trands Pacific Partnership chapter on intellectual property – including drug patents – contains some pretty disturbing evidence about what’s still on the table. The leaked drafts pertain to the May...
    Gordon Campbell | 20-10
  • Access: Art and disability: a festival
    The three-day InterACT 2014 Disability Arts Festival kicks off tomorrow at Auckland's Corban Estate and, in its fourth year, provides an intriguing mix of established artists and joyous, unbridled inclusion.One one hand, there are the gala nights on Thursday and...
    Public Address | 20-10
  • Prison abolition – part of creating a just, equal, peaceful society
    Protest at Paremoremo in 2012 over what lawyer Peter Williams described as ‘inhumane’ conditions by Val Morse I want to acknowledge all the people who have done time inside, been arrested or assaulted by the police, whether here or elsewhere....
    Redline | 20-10
  • Prison abolition – part of creating a just, equal, peaceful society
    Protest at Paremoremo in 2012 over what lawyer Peter Williams described as ‘inhumane’ conditions by Val Morse I want to acknowledge all the people who have done time inside, been arrested or assaulted by the police, whether here or elsewhere....
    Redline | 20-10
  • Members of the public stop donating to the SPCA over position on 1080
    Steve Atwood that posted this letter to the SPCA on Facebook the other day. Steve is a great guy and takes some brilliant wildlife photos. We have republished Steve’s letter to the SPCA with his permission. Dear SPCA, I write...
    Gareth’s World | 20-10
  • The struggles of everyday life
    A photo of Asher (right) face-to-face with a cop, taken at a protest outside the Labour Party Conference in 2007, following the so-called “terror raids”, taken by Simon Oosterman. (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think...
    On the Left | 20-10
  • West Auckland new network consultation
    Consultation for the West Auckland portion of the new network is now underway. This follows the consultations for Pukekohe/Waiuku, Warkworth, Hibiscus Coast and South Auckland. The consultation runs from today till Monday 1st December. It’s a consultation I’ll be following...
    Transport Blog | 20-10
  • The gerrymanders and National’s 2017 constraints
    Parliament is back in business with National in charge to a degree not seen since first-past-the-post “parliamentary dictatorship” days — thanks to three successful gerrymanders and one failed one. Two of the successful gerrymanders were National’s contrivances to get its...
    Colin James | 20-10
  • Ocean heat storage: a particularly lousy policy target
    The New York Times, 12 December 2027: After 12 years of debate and negotiation, kicked off in Paris in 2015, world leaders have finally agreed to ditch the goal of limiting global warming to below 2 °C. Instead, they have...
    Real Climate | 20-10
  • Sanctions and bombs: how the UN and western powers committed mass murder in...
    This article first appeared in revolution magazine’s Middle East bulletin MidEast Solidarity, issue #1, Spring 2001. It looks at the division of labour between the United Nations and western imperialist powers in committing mass murder in Iraq in the 1990s;...
    Redline | 20-10
  • Sanctions and bombs: how the UN and western powers committed mass murder in...
    This article first appeared in revolution magazine’s Middle East bulletin MidEast Solidarity, issue #1, Spring 2001. It looks at the division of labour between the United Nations and western imperialist powers in committing mass murder in Iraq in the 1990s;...
    Redline | 20-10
  • Luke Harding and the spy as editor
    Originally published at Overland I was writing a chapter on the NSA’s close, and largely hidden, relationship with Silicon Valley. I wrote that Snowden’s revelations had damaged US tech companies and their bottom line. Something odd happened. The paragraph I...
    Bat bean beam | 20-10
  • I quite like beer, the rugby no so much
    Phil Quin put a post up yesterday chiding Grant Robertson for what he sees as an overly cautious approach to political messaging and urging him to be more warlike in his phraseology because New Zealanders clearly have a deep, deep...
    Pundit | 20-10
  • Speech from the Throne: State Opening of Parliament, 21 Oct
    Speech – Governor General Following the General Election, a National-led Government has been formed with a majority in the House on confidence and supply. Confidence and supply agreements have been signed between the National Party and, respectively, the ACT Party...
    Its our future | 20-10
  • Gordon Campbell on the latest TPP leaks
    Column – Gordon Campbell The release by Julian Assange on Wikileaks of the draft Trands Pacific Partnership chapter on intellectual property including drug patents – contains some pretty disturbing evidence about whats still on the table.Gordon Campbell on the latest...
    Its our future | 20-10
  • United Nations: friend or foe?
    Many well-intentioned people still see the United Nations as some kind of alternative to imperialism. Below we’re reprinting an article that first appeared in issue #2 of MidEast Solidarity (Autumn 2002), the Middle East bulletin of revolution magazine. The anti-imperialist...
    Redline | 20-10
  • United Nations: friend or foe?
    Many well-intentioned people still see the United Nations as some kind of alternative to imperialism. Below we’re reprinting an article that first appeared in issue #2 of MidEast Solidarity (Autumn 2002), the Middle East bulletin of revolution magazine. The anti-imperialist...
    Redline | 20-10
  • Every day’s a rainy day
    Sarah’s cat, Carina *nb* This is a repost from Sarah’s site writehanded.org. This week, my best friend – otherwise known as a slightly rotund adopted moggy called Carina – decided that she would enjoy no less than three visits to...
    On the Left | 20-10
  • 10 Key Facts about Labour’s Leadership Election
    Plans are proceeding for the Leadership Election, and at this stage I thought it might be useful to have a heads-up on some of the key aspects from the perspective of members:...
    Labour campaign | 20-10
  • SellShed shedding money?
    This is not how you are meant to do it: Online seller SellShed starts up The seven-person firm has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars building a website and free iPhone app and was now on the hunt for “smart...
    Lance Wiggs | 20-10
  • John Key on Iraq: A timeline
    No New Zealand forces to Iraq, says Key. Stuff, 18 June 2014: Prime Minister John Key has ruled out sending special forces soldiers to Iraq as the United States mulls options in response to the unfolding crisis there. Speaking in...
    No Right Turn | 20-10
  • New Fisk
    With US-led strikes on Isis intensifying, it’s a good time to be a shareholder in the merchants of death...
    No Right Turn | 20-10
  • Carbon News 20/10/14: Chile’s carbon tax, soil SOS and more pressure on d...
    Chile’s new tax could open carbon doors for NZ Chile’s new carbon tax potentially offers New Zealand an opportunity to offset some of its own agricultural greenhouse gas emissions, says economist Dr Suzi Kerr. The $US5-a-tonne carbon tax slipped into...
    Hot Topic | 20-10
  • National doesn’t care about crime by the rich
    National likes to make a lot of noise about benefit fraud. Meanwhile, they've buried a report into the social costs of economic crime:At the beginning of last year the then Minister for the SFO, Anne Tolley, was reported as saying...
    No Right Turn | 20-10
  • New kiwi blog
    On The Left - a collective of lefties....
    No Right Turn | 20-10
  • Habemus Parliament
    So, a month after the election, we finally have a Parliament. Good. meanwhile, people seem to be noticing that the associated ceremony - white wigs, fancy dress, oaths of allegiance to a foreign monarch - isn't very kiwi (and tomorrow,...
    No Right Turn | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    frogblog | 20-10
  • NZ elite win seat at UN Security Council – don’t celebrate, organise!
    Among its past services at the top table of the UN, New Zealand chaired the sanctions committee on Iraq; their sanctions killed at least a million Iraqis, half of them children by Philip Ferguson The New Zealand elite is slapping...
    Redline | 20-10
  • A mighty totara has fallen across the Tasman
    The New Zealand Labour Party expresses deep sadness at the death of former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, aged 98. “Today a great totara has fallen across the Tasman,” Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says....
    Labour | 21-10
  • Note to National: Must deliver on child poverty
    John Key and his Government will be held to its promise to make child poverty a priority, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “In its priority-setting speech today the Government stated child poverty would be a major focus for...
    Labour | 21-10
  • New Analysis show Government cut tertiary education funding
    New analysis done by the Green Party today shows the Government has made cuts to funding of tertiary education since 2008.Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that between 2009 and 2015 Government funding to Tertiary Institutions dropped by 4...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Students doing it tough as fees rise again
    The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Steven Joyce is shutting a generation...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Key misled New Zealand on Iraq deployment
      John Key was misleading New Zealanders prior to the election when he ruled out New Zealand special forces being deployed to Iraq, says Labour Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff.  “Post-election he has cynically disregarded that by saying that deployment of...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Church congratulated on child poverty stand
    The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.   “I think...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review.  He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban (see further biographical details here). The Review Team...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
  • RECOUNT JUST ONE STEP TO RESTORING CREDIBILITY
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA SEEKS TAI TOKERAU RECOUNT
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA to fight mass privatisation of state housing
    Announcements over the past 12 hours from the Minister responsible for Housing New Zealand, Bill English, and Minister for Social Housing, Paula Bennett, make clear the government’s intention for the mass privatisation of state housing. This comes during the middle...
    Mana | 07-10
  • Journalists have right to protect sources
    Legal authorities must respect the right of journalist Nicky Hager to protect the source of his material for his Dirty Politics book under Section 68 of the Evidence Act, Acting Labour Leader David Parker says. “It is crucial in an...
    Labour | 06-10
  • It shouldn’t take the Army to house the homeless
    National’s move to speed up its state house sell-off shows it is bankrupt of new ideas, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “National has been in office for six years, yet the housing crisis has got worse every month and...
    Labour | 06-10
  • Government must lift social housing supply, not shuffle the deck chairs
    National's decision to shift the state provision of housing to third parties is a smokescreen for the Government decreasing the provision of affordable housing, the Green Party said today."What National should be doing is increasing the supply of both social...
    Greens | 06-10
  • Election 2014 – the final count
    While we have to wait for the final booth level counts we can now see how well we did in the specials and look at electorate level data. First off special votes (and disallowed/recounted votes etc). There was a change...
    Greens | 06-10
  • We need more houses, not Ministers
    The Government’s decision to have three housing Ministers will create a dog’s breakfast of the portfolio and doesn’t bode well for fixing the country’s housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New Zealanders need more houses, not more Ministers....
    Labour | 05-10
  • MANA’S CHALLENGE TO THE 51st PARLIAMENT
    Ten years ago I led 50,000 Maori on the historic FORESHORE AND SEABED MARCH from Te Rerenga Wairua to the very steps of this parliament, in a march against the greatest land grab in the history of this country –...
    Mana | 03-10
  • Is this really necessary?
    No one denies chief executives should be well paid for their skills and experience, but it is the efforts of all employees which contribute to company profits, Labour’s Acting Leader David Parker says. “Salaries paid to chief executives come at...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Lyttelton Port workers also deserve pay rises
    Hard slog by Lyttelton Port workers contributed to strong financial growth for the company and they deserve to be rewarded for their work as much as its chief executive, says Labour’s Acting Leader David Parker. “Lyttelton Port chief executive Peter...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Māori Party must seek guarantees on Māori seats
    Labour is calling on the Māori Party to ensure protection of the Māori seats is part of its coalition deal with National which is being considering this weekend, Labour’s Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. “For the third consecutive term,...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Donaghys job losses another blow to Dunedin
    The loss of 30 jobs from Donaghys rope and twine factory is yet another blow to the people and economy of Dunedin, says Dunedin South Labour MP Clare Curran. “Donaghys was founded in 1876; the company has survived two world...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Dairy price fall shows urgent need to diversify
    The overnight drop in milk prices shows New Zealand’s overreliance on the dairy industry puts our economy in a vulnerable position, says Acting Labour Leader David Parker. “Dairy prices fell 7.3 per cent overnight and have almost halved since February....
    Labour | 02-10
  • Tasks aplenty for new Health Minister
    One of the first jobs for the new Minister of Health must be to provide an honest and transparent report into surgery waiting times and exactly how many Kiwis are not having their health needs met, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette...
    Labour | 02-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Discordant Chimes of Freedom: Why Labour has yet to be forgiven.
    WHY DOES THE ELECTORATE routinely punish Labour and the Greens for their alleged “political correctness” but not National? It just doesn’t seem fair. Consider, for example, the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 – the so-called “anti-smacking legislation” –...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Hosking or Henry – Which right wing crypto fascist clown do you want to w...
    So Mediaworks are finally going to make some actual money from their eye watering contract with Paul Henry by launching a new multi-platform Breakfast show over TV, Radio and internet. This is great news for Campbell Live who have dodged...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Families need more money to reduce child poverty
    Prime Minister John Key is mistaken to rule out extending the In Work Tax Credit to all poor children (The Nation 11th Oct) and Child Poverty Action Group challenges government advisors to come up with a more cost effective way...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Don’t shit on my dream
    Once were dreamers. A large man, walks down the road and, even from 200 yards there’s light showing between his big arms and bigger body. It’s as if he’s put tennis balls under his arms. Two parking wardens walk out...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Labour and ‘special interests’
    The media narrative of Labour is that it is unpopular because it’s controlled by ‘special interests’. This ‘special interests’ garbage is code for gays, Maoris, wimin and unionists. We should show that argument the contempt it deserves. The next Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Ru...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Tahi) . National’s housing development project: ‘Gateway’ to confusion . Perhaps nothing better illustrates National’s lack of a coherent housing programme than the ‘circus’ that is...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Here’s what WINZ are patronisingly saying to people on welfare when they ...
    Yesterday, a case manager from WINZ called to tell me that I needed to “imagine what I would do if I did not have welfare”. I replied “Well, I guess if I couldn’t live at home, I would be homeless.”...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • David Shearer’s ‘no feminist chicks’ mentality highlights all that is...
    Mr Nasty pays a visit Shearer’s extraordinary outburst last night on NZs favourite redneck TV, The Paul Henry Show, is a reminder of all that is wrong within the Labour Caucus right now… He said the current calls for a female or...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0
    Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – A Tale Of Two Cities
    Sunday was surreal. I went for a drive and ended up in a different country. It wasn’t intentional but those days of too many literally intertextual references seldom are. There is no doubt that the Sunday drive this week had...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Key raises terror threat level to justify war in Iraq and now the SIS need ...
    Have we learned nothing from rushing into war? It’s embarrassing Key has raised our terror threat from ‘very low’ to ‘low’ so he can justify military action in Iraq. Watching him pimp for an American war is as sick as...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Socialism? in France; Austerity in Europe
    On Sunday I stumbled upon this recent New York Times column The Fall of France by Paul Krugman. Then I caught BBC’s Newsnight interview with France’s ‘Socialist’ Prime Minister Manuel Valls. Krugman notes that the Socialists came to power on an anti-austerity mandate, but completely squandered their opportunity...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • So Snowden and Greenwald were right – again – NZ Embassies spying for A...
    Well, well, well. What do we have here… NZ embassies involved in covert intelligence work for US – reportsNew Zealand’s embassies have been involved in covert intelligence gathering work on behalf of the United States, a fresh batch of classified...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Why David Parker *isn’t* a credible choic...
    The one electoral contest this year that a Labour leader is sure to win heated up over the weekend with the late entry of Finance Spokesman (and interim caretaker leader) David Parker into Labour’s leadership race. I’d blogged late last...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Fran O’Sullivan’s extraordinary column
    Note how the carefully constructed flow chart above ignores the mainstream media’s complicity with Slater and Dirty Politics    I am no fan of Fran O’Sullivan’s politics and would argue long into the day against her on many of the...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Final salute to Cunliffe
    Final salute to Cunliffe...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • David Cunliffe’s statement
    I am today announcing that I have decided not to nominate for the 2014 Labour Party leadership contest. It has been a hard decision to make but it is one that I believe is in the best interests of the...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Cunliffe to quit leadership race – the losers are the Labour Party member...
    That’s all folks   And so ends the first ever Labour Party member/affiliates choice for leadership. David Cunliffe is standing down at 2pm and is supporting Andrew Little instead. What a perverse turn of events. Cunliffe was punished by an angry Labour leadership forced...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Want to see new Nu Zilind? Read the comments section of Andrea Vance’s co...
    Andrea Vance is no stooge. She is one of the few mainstream media voices who has challenged power and authority, her latest column on the outrageous attempts by Key to use fear mongering to  spook the sleepy hobbits into war...
    The Daily Blog | 12-10
  • Humanity calling Government – anyone with empathy home?
    On Friday night groups of Invercargill activists and plain ole people who care took part in the 14 Hours Homeless event – sleeping out in the balmy southern climate on cardboard and couches at our Salvation Army Citadel. It’s a...
    The Daily Blog | 12-10
  • Labour, leadership and White blokes
    David Shearer said on TV3’s The Nation this weekend that he appreciated the support Labour’s received from Maori and Pacific communities over the last few elections, but that it was important to again, secure the votes of ordinary white blokes...
    The Daily Blog | 12-10
  • Wrong priorities in media coverage of Ebola crisis
    The experts have told us that there is very little likelihood of a serious Ebola outbreak in any Western nation – unless the virus changes so that it can be spread through the air rather than just via bodily fluids....
    The Daily Blog | 12-10
  • John Key uses the same old warmongering recipe
    Less than three weeks after the election Prime Minister John Key wants New Zealand to join a war in the Middle East and extend the powers of our US-focused spy agencies the SIS (Security Intelligence Service) and the GCSB (Government...
    The Daily Blog | 12-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • RainbowYOUTH: 25 Years, 25 More
    In 1989, a group of young people in Auckland got together to form a support group for LGBTIQ youth. They called it Auckland Lesbian And Gay Youth (ALGY). After 25 years, several location changes, a name change, a brand reboot...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Outdated Oath shows need for Kiwi Head of State
    MPs are sworn in today and New Zealand Republic has written to MPs asking them to talk about why 121 New Zealanders elected by the people of New Zealand and standing in the New Zealand Parliament swear allegiance to another...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Council shouldn’t revenue grab from windfall valuations
    Auckland Council should state clearly they will not try and capture revenue as a result of the latest valuations and needs reminding that the City’s skyrocketing property values doesn’t change the level or cost of Council’s services, says...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • EPMU endorses Andrew Little for Labour leadership
    The National Executive of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union unanimously endorsed Andrew Little for the role of Labour leader, at a meeting held yesterday. “I have been speaking to our workplace delegates at forums across the country over...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • World Food Day promotes Agroecology not GE technology
    The UN has stated that agroecology is a major solution to feeding the world and caring for the earth....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Labour Names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Contenders for Labour leadership debate for first time
    The contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party debated for the first time on TV One’s Q+A programme today....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • UN Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme
    New Zealand's United Nations Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully
    Murray McCully says New Zealanders can expect a 5-10 year engagement against Islamic State if we join military action in Iraq and the government will take that “very carefully into account”...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Julia Gillard
    Julia Gillard says there is “sufficient evidence” to fight Islamic State and does not think it will increase the risk of a domestic attack...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • NZ businesses to make child abuse a priority conversation
    Many leading New Zealand businesses have partnered with national child advocacy organisation Child Matters to participate in the fourth annual ‘Buddy Day’ - New Zealand’s only child abuse prevention awareness day....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Tribunal decision significant for SMEs
    The Human Rights Review Tribunal decided this week in favour of an employee’s right not to work on Saturdays for religious reasons. The decision may still be appealed but the Director of the Office of Human Rights Proceedings, Robert Kee,...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • On The Nation this weekend
    This weekend on The Nation… New Zealand has been elected to the United Nations Security Council, but what happens next? Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully from New York about our goals for reform, what America wants from us...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • 1000+ supported by Te Arawa Whanau Ora
    Over 1000 individual whānau members are leading happier, healthier, more successful lives as a result of eight passionate and committed Māori organisations working at the coalface to help whānau find success....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Nomination for Board Members Now Open
    CRF’s objective is to create opportunities for people from refugee backgrounds to lead fulfilling lives and contribute to every area of New Zealand society. It is an organisation that undertakes advocacy work using the strengths-based approach,...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Anglican Family Care Otago staff to take industrial action
    Social workers, family workers and support staff working for Anglican Family Care in Dunedin and South Otago will take industrial action after their employer refused a pay increase that would keep up with the rising cost of living....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Use UN Security Council role to overcome inaction and injust
    Amnesty International welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the UN Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use the role to ensure the body lives up to its role of safeguarding global peace and security....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Grisham’s ‘child porn’ comments ignorant
    World-renowned author John Grisham has come under fire by advocacy group Stop Demand Foundation, for comments it says trivialises the global child sex abuse trade....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Latest leak of TPPA intellectual property text confirms risk
    On the eve of the latest (non)round of negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) yet another version of the intellectual property has found its way to Wikileaks ....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • New Zealand awarded UN Security Council seat
    International aid agency Oxfam New Zealand welcomes New Zealand’s election to the United Nations Security Council, saying it gives an extraordinary opportunity to make a lasting contribution to international peace and security and improve the lives...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • 40 more jobs lost to cheap imports
    40 more jobs lost to cheap imports Another New Zealand manufacturer is closing its doors, giving the lie to the idea that we have a “rock star” economy or any strategy for jobs growth. Wellpack is a paper bag manufacturer...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Pink Batts manufacturer to cut Christchurch jobs
    Pink Batts manufacturer to cut Christchurch jobs 29 roles are to be cut at the Christchurch manufacturing facility of Tasman Insulation, the company which manufacturers the iconic Pink Batts brand of products. The company is proposing to consolidate its...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Kellogg cereal donations help the Sallies feed those in need
    Kellogg New Zealand commits 64,000 serves of breakfast cereal during World Food Day Coinciding with World Food Day this year, Kellogg New Zealand and The Salvation Army are reaching out to less fortunate Kiwis with the donation of 64,000 serves...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • National Slips, Labour Hits Lows
    National fail to get post-election bounce but leaderless Labour Party crash to lowest ever support...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • NZ parents hope for more than just happy and healthy babies
    Auckland, 16 October 2014 – What do expectant mums and dads hope for their children? According to new research from Growing Up in New Zealand , a baby’s health and happiness may be high up on the list, but today’s...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • NZPI backs Minister’s affordable housing stance
    NZPI backs Minister’s affordable housing stance NZPI is supportive of Hon. Dr Nick Smith’s, efforts to use the RMA as a mechanism for taking the heat out of the housing affordability challenge in New Zealand. “As Minister for Environment...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Prime Minister’s OIA Admision Disturbing
    The Taxpayers’ Union is calling for answers after it was revealed on Radio New Zealand’s Morning Report that the Prime Minister’s office routinely flouts its obligations under the Official Information Act. Taxpayers’ Union spokesman, Ben...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • NZDIA forum press release
    NZDIA forum press release Wellington - The New Zealand Defence Industry Association, with the support of the NZ Defence Force and the Ministry of Defence, will be holding a two-day international forum on October 21-22 at the Michael Fowler Centre...
    Scoop politics | 15-10
  • BPW NZ calls fashion industry to account
    The New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW NZ) joins the call for action on the use of skinny models and mannequins as it is directly affecting the self-esteem and health of many of our young people....
    Scoop politics | 15-10
  • Electoral Commission introduces Extra Touch for Blind NZers
    The Electoral Commission was presented with the Extra Touch Award by the Association of Blind Citizens of New Zealand (Blind Citizens NZ), in recognition of its successful implementation of Telephone Dictation Voting ahead of its commitment to do so by...
    Scoop politics | 15-10
Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere