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Open mike 13/11/2012

Written By: - Date published: 2:45 am, November 13th, 2012 - 119 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

119 comments on “Open mike 13/11/2012”

  1. lprent 1

    You will note the new RSS feeds on the right. These are:-

    1. Experimental.
    2. Subject to further layout changes – like authors, times and icons.
    3. Subject to removal if I see system problems from them.
    4. Generally subject to change until we’re happy with it.
    5. The sites in the list are mostly from the last 30 days of outward links less a few sites that have too many posts1.
    6. Plus some small sites that I put in because I like reading them.
    7. Authors can suggest more.
    8. After that, we’ll take commentator suggestions.
    9. The preference will be for smallish sites in terms of posts. Local sites. Leftish sites or sites that our readership click through to.
    10. Slots are limited to 100 in a scrolling div (about 20 visible) subject to performance.
    11. Sites will get dropped from the list if I see a rise in their posts that start to crowd out the smaller sites (which is what this area is for).
    12. Being banned means your site won’t make it or won’t stay on to the list2.
    13. Constructive criticism and suggestions are welcome.
    14. But as usual telling us how we should run the site may suffer the usual fate.
    15. And we will make the decision about the line. It is a fine line – have fun balancing :twisted:
    16. If anyone knows where the parliamentary debates have a RSS/Atom feed – please tell me.

    1This is known as the Whaledreck rule as described here.
    2This is known as the PG 5000 rule. Described in here.

  2. Excellent column in the NY Times on the election that Mitt Romney won.  He set out to win the votes of heterosexual white males and succeeded resoundingly.  The only problem was that he forgot about women, latinos, gays and the black community.

    The article also suggests there is hope.  Maureen Dowd suggests that while Obama lifted progressive America last time, this time progressive America lifted Obama to victory.  And there is an expectation, that climate change, minority rights and secularism are now given a chance.

  3. David H 3

    How far out of touch is this guy??? I mean FFS all we are is “Nonsense” . Well Fuck you too Shearer
    That’s a real good way to keep your voters, all though I cannot for the life of me see that many staying around if you are left in charge of this bunch of children, your caucus, it’s completely out of touch with reality, and running to individual agenda’s, IE: Shane Bloody Jones, he should have been slapped down hard for going into someone Else’s portfolio, instead of that it’s just ignored. You have had a year to ‘get your shit together’ but you have done little to improve the problems you have with speech, and over interpreting every thing, you have obviously ignored any tips from your media tutors, as it seems you have ignored everyone else. So here’s my prediction if you are in charge in 2014. The Green, Mana, & Labour Government led by Dr Norman, and his deputies, Minister of Maori Affairs Metria Turei And associate Hone Hawaria, and Minister of Finance, the Labour leader David Cunliffe. One of only a handful of MP’s to have retained his seat, in the biggest bloodletting in history, as the traditional Labour voters deserted the party in droves, to the Greens and Mana parties.

    [lprent: Fixed links – watch out for the trailing ‘ on links. ]

    • Olwyn 3.1

      Here is a thought, following on what you say, David H, and the many posts questioning Shearer’s leadership. Someone, I’ve forgotten who, said in one of those posts, that Helen’s favoured successor’s were in turn Steve Maharey and David Cunliffe, but Phil ended up with the job. And it seems to me that this left/right battle for control of the LP has been going on for some time, and has become a public issue since the right had to turn to an inexperienced man to retain their slender hold. It is said that Shearer has no position. I think that his position is to try to be loyal to the right wingers who want him there, to keep the left at bay.

      No doubt these people have their reasons for thinking as they do: that there is no going back, that lefties do not attract business donations, etc, etc. What they need to face is that most people who want to see a LP “modernised” to fit the right wing agenda actually want the poor, the low paid, etc. to have no voice, despite their being mercilessly screwed. This is not a moral position for a LP to be in, and it would also be a dangerous one if Australia stopped serving as a safety valve.

      • Socialist Paddy 3.1.1

        Stuff have a poll on the Labour Leadership issue if anyone is interested.

      • Vicky32 3.1.2

        No doubt these people have their reasons for thinking as they do: that there is no going back, that lefties do not attract business donations, etc, etc. What they need to face is that most people who want to see a LP “modernised” to fit the right wing agenda actually want the poor, the low paid, etc. to have no voice, despite their being mercilessly screwed. This is not a moral position for a LP to be in, and it would also be a dangerous one if Australia stopped serving as a safety valve

        Oh, see how evil Shearer is! What nonsense.
        Don’t you people who hate Shearer see how delighted Matthew Hooton and Duncan Garner are with you? If I were you, that would worry me – if the actual right want Shearer to go, and they very very obviously do, then ask oyurself why they want him gone? Maybe you’ve been had?

        • Olwyn 3.1.2.1

          Vicky: I have yet to see evidence that Shearer is of the left, and that is what worries me. The Labour Party has been hijacked before. And Matthew Hooton has largely showed approval of Shearer’s leadership.

          • Vicky32 3.1.2.1.1

            And Matthew Hooton has largely showed approval of Shearer’s leadership.

            I suppose you didn’t hear him on Radio NZ yesterday, then! :D
            He was rubbing his hands with glee at the prospect of the leadership challenge that he just knows (an insider told him, he said when challenged) is coming.
            Ask yourself, why does Hooton cream his jeans at the ;idea of a leadership challenge?
            Standatdistas has been campaigning against Shearer for most of this year, and I have never been able to understand why. Someone months ago, even pointed out that an anti-Shearer post deliberately misquoted DS, and yet no one gave a monkeys (except, it would seem for me, and for Labour people out there in the real world.)

            • lprent 3.1.2.1.1.1

              Standatdistas has been campaigning against Shearer for most of this year, and I have never been able to understand why.

              Ah no. If you have a look at the authors, some are for him for one reason or another and some are against for some reason or another. Ditto with the commentators. I suspect you’re mistaking “volume” for reasoning and failing to read what people are actually saying. Hell I wrote a post explaining it.

              In my case I questioned the competence of someone with only a couple of years in parliament to run the parliamentary caucus. He was a neophyte in a area that I have never seen people get competent at in less than 5-6 years as a simple MP. So far he hasn’t shown any signs of exceeding that speed. Quite simply he is at about 3 years now and starting to look like a MP rather than a PM. It is pretty good progress – just not useful to the party who might have to win an early election (if I was a Nat, I’d be calculating when to give John Banks to the police and lose a confidence motion).

              Sure John Key became leader after three and a half years. But he was lucky enough to come in just after the Nat’s had repaired most of the party and parliamentary damage from the 1999 and 2002 elections and had nearly won the 2005 and they had a clear campaign strategy underway. There was a pretty experienced and supportive team who helped him a lot. Watching him in 2006 and even 2007 was like watching a fledging try to fly.

              With David Shearer this year it has been more like watching him learning how to break the egg.

              I question is why the loons in caucus stuck David Shearer in that position with what looks like very limited experienced support. But it has been on a par with some of the other wierdo decisions from caucus over the past few years. I’m annoyed with it.

              • Anne

                I question is why the loons in caucus stuck David Shearer in that position with what looks like very limited experienced support.

                They saw the icing on the cake (his back-story) and forgot to take into account… whether the ingredients underneath had reached a sufficient mix of knowledge and experience for the job.

                My quarrel is not with David Shearer. Its with those in caucus who, in my view, were not thinking of him but rather themselves.

                • Colonial Viper

                  My quarrel is not with David Shearer. Its with those in caucus who, in my view, were not thinking of him but rather themselves.

                  Exactly.

                  And Shearer himself should have said, thanks but no thanks, I’ll take my turn when I’ve time under my belt and it’s right to do so.

                  • Herodotus

                    The same is the lack of discipline within the caucus, given the experience of many of those who have self inflicted harm on the party. Mallard, Jones and those who with experience that have been a no show Horomia, Prasad, King. With 34 MP’s there is a dearth of “Team” and it appears to be a few solo efforts holding the party together. Labours issue is not all Shearers but lack of commitment from the dead wood.

        • fatty 3.1.2.2

          I never knew Hooten wants Shearer gone…do you have a link for that (I actually thought he was scared of having Cunliffe as the leader)…Garner I’m not surprised, he’s a political journalist, so he naturally wants political action (I’m not of the opinion that Garner is really that much into National, I’ve always thought of him as being quite fair between Labour and National, despite what some claim here)

          • Vicky32 3.1.2.2.1

            I never knew Hooten wants Shearer gone…do you have a link for that (I actually thought he was scared of having Cunliffe as the leader)…

            No, I don’t have a link. But he said as much on Radio NZ yesterday.
            What craziness. Garner is not too bad, David Shearer is a rightist. Honestly, what has become of the Standard?

            • fatty 3.1.2.2.1.1

              most of these blog posts from Garner are anti-National, the fewer times he focuses on Labour he is just as critical of them. I dunno where this idea of a National-bias from Garner comes from. Especially considering he works for media works…and he quit their weekend morning politics bore-fest because it sucks big time. Most of the time he’s pointing out that there is little difference between National and Labour.
              I can’t be bothered listening to Hooten…here is an article from him backing Shearer. Hooten wants a lame duck running Labour

              • karol

                Those are his more recent ones – at least at first.  Garner often spins in the government, or right wing favour: e.g. when analysing TV3 polls.  He favours Shearer over Cunliffe, and tends to repeat the smears against Cunliffe.

                Also, something else I had been thinking about incorporating in a blog post on the MSM, and never got to it.  Mediaworks repaid its loan to the government back at the beginning of October. 

                How much has that coincided with the likes of Campbell regaining his critical edge?

                • fatty

                  true…I remember that half-story about Cunliffe that came across as a school yard rumour. That was some b-grade journalism there.
                  The mediaworks loan relating to channel 3’s critique of the Government would be interesting. I remember years ago when Clark was boosting funding to TVNZ (TVNZ7, Heartland, NZ on air etc) it appeared that she was getting preferential coverage from them – obviously this ended with the nanny-state nonsense around 07-08…not sure if the funding dried up then?
                  I dunno if what I’ve just written is accurate, just a hunch. Not sure how TVNZ has changed much since TVNZ7 got cut…but I guess if the wages of those in power at TVNZ has increased then who cares if the only channel worth watching gets cut…fat cats and all that.

                • David H

                  To say nothing of Rachael Smalley she got real smarts there. As proved when she interviewed Hone.

        • gobsmacked 3.1.2.3

          Vicky

          Sometimes the easiest explanation is the one right in front of you.

          A few may “hate Shearer”, but I certainly don’t, and I reckon that goes for most of his critics. We just don’t think he should be leader of the Labour party.

          We don’t reach this conclusion by worrying about what Matthew Hooten wants us to think. We get there by observing David Shearer.

          I don’t think he should be a ballet dancer or All Black either. Doesn’t mean I hate him. Just exercising the brain. Evidence in, conclusion out.

          • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.3.1

            Shearer would make an excellent Crown Minister in his 2nd or 3rd full term as an MP.

            • PlanetOrphan 3.1.2.3.1.1

              We’ll see what kind of a director he is in the new year ….
              (Which is where everyone’s fear really lives)

    • Smith 3.2

      Trundling along on Planet Shearer as usual…

    • karol 3.3

      DH:  Are you referring to this article: ‘Shearer plays down leadership row‘, by Claire Trevett.?  Your links go to the NZH main page.  

      They are also running a poll on whether he should stand down, beside the article – no rrecorded votes as yet.

      Labour leader David Shearer is brushing off a crescendo of calls for him to step down by left-leaning bloggers and commentators, saying it is “nonsense” and should be ignored….

      The series of those calling for Shearer to step down included three bloggers on the Standard blog, although another Standard blogger, former Labour secretary Mike Smith, counselled against a change. Other critics included Brian Edwards, who has consistently been critical of Shearer, and Herald columnist Tapu Misa.

      Yesterday the three MPs regarded as having leadership goals – Grant Robertson, David Cunliffe and Andrew Little – all ruled out any immediate challenge and rejected suggestions they were involved in any attempt to undermine Mr Shearer. 

      • Bill 3.3.1

        It crossed my mind this morning that Labour may well have gifted itself an ‘enfant terrible’. I don’t know if that’s quite the right expression, but bashing on…How democratically inclined is a person, simply used to being ensconced in a bureaucracy, likely to be? How likely is years of working in unaccountable bureaucracies likely to foster a mentality along the lines of – “Those ‘poor underlings’ know nothing about how I know what’s good for them. But for them and their better interests, I will persevere”

    • David H 3.4

      ARRRRRGG The links did’nt work. Thats what you get for trying to be tidy.
      Nonsense should be http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10846967
      SBJ should be http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10846365
      Can some one please fix.

      • weka 3.4.1

        I’ve been noticing a few broken links lately on TS – they all have an errant apostrophe at the end. Is that a cut and paste issue?

        • karol 3.4.1.1

          I’ve been having a problem with the WYSIWYG buttons.  The blockquote button puts the command around the whole comment, not just the highlighted text.  I have to go to the html view to sort it out.

          • weka 3.4.1.1.1

            WYSIWYG doesn’t work propery in Safari. I find it’s fine in Firefox (mac)

          • lprent 3.4.1.1.2

            It is on my fix list. But the Feed panel was requested by Irish in 2010 according to my notes…..

            Nearly through the bugs and features at work – ETA is about 2 weeks for the release of product 2 code.

            What I want to do is to drop the tinymce/wysiwg approach and use something a lot simpler more like the the comment editor in the backend. But I have been accumulating holidays while Lyn has been using her’s for festivals and the like. I’ll have to use some of them up shortly and do a site refresh.

        • lprent 3.4.1.2

          Yes. From the incoming side. Just comment to call them to our attention and someone will fix them eventually.

    • Rhinocrates 3.5

      How could he know if the blogs were nonsense if he doesn’t read them? :twisted:

      • Uturn 3.5.1

        He also says the authors here are “feeding off each other” – a similar claim as Farrar’s “co-ordinated strategy to de-stabilise”. Is Shearer running Farrar’s attack lines?

        Unless he can prove inside knowledge, perhaps using the footage from a secret camera, the precendent set by The Standard moderation could ban Shearer for implying a hive-mind to a machine. Who’s to say he is not already among us? :shock:

        The past three days have given us two further definitions of the word, discussion:

        1) co-ordinated strategy to destabilise
        2) feeding off each other.

        • Jackal 3.5.1.1

          Is Shearer running Farrar’s attack lines? C’mon Uturn, that’s about as silly as Pete George claiming that I’m Shearer’s advisor. RFLMAO Oh how the lines are becoming seriously blurred on this issue. Warning! I just linked to Whaleoil again… Let the cleansing begin.

          • Te Reo Putake 3.5.1.1.1

            Ooooh, somebody doesn’t like you, Jackal. You must doing good work! I note that PG is still fixated with my contribution to his downfall, namechecking me in his (sort of) humorous response to the PG5000 joke on Imperator Fish. I think you can take the hatred displayed against you on Whale oil in the same way; proof that you are hitting them where it hurts.

          • Uturn 3.5.1.1.2

            It’s true, there’s no way Shearer is part of a Nat conspiracy…

            …or is he?

            :shock:

            I suggest an immediate purge of commenters who like to throw mangoes.

        • McFlock 3.5.1.2

          As an aside, “feeding off each other” is completely different to a coordinated campaign.
               
          The difference is like between an angry mob that happens to clock off and a gang of bank robbers. The mob mills around, pushes against itself, and basically herds in the direction of least resistance. Robbers move on an objective according to a plan, use targeted force against obstacles, and have a clear endpoint in mind. 

        • Vicky32 3.5.1.3

          Is Shearer running Farrar’s attack lines?

          Paranoia much? Honestly, this place has gone insane.
          Who did Shearer offend? The identity politics crowd is my guess.

    • Rosie 3.6

      Hi David. Yes, our discussion IS nonsense apparently. Check out this story in the Dom Post:

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/7941813/Shearer-confident-knives-won-t-come-out

      Comments posted by Eddie on The Standard are quoted. Shearers response is “thats basically people sitting in front of their computers giving their opinions and continuing to drive the discussion of it (his leadership) up”. I found that quite offensive, arrogant and pretty rude given that he is referring to potential Labour supporters and voters. I’ve left a comment on that article but my comments on fairfax only get posted about 50% of the time. I’d encourage others to post on this story. How else are we going to ge them to listen?

      • karol 3.6.1

        Rosie, looks like your comment is the first up this time.  Well said. And this “whispering” meme is nasty and wrong.

        • Rosie 3.6.1.1

          Karol, the choice of the word ‘whispering’ got me. Shades of “innoculation” ala crobsy textor/Nat stylez?

          • weka 3.6.1.1.1

            We know how to SHOUT online. Not sure about whispering. Is this a whisper? {or this?}


            When I read Shearer’s words, ‘whispering’ to me sounds like something that happens at parliament when people want to talk about something but don’t want to be overheard. It’s a strange choice of word to apply to the internet, where in this case authors and commenters at TS are being quite loud and open. Maybe it’s just a case of Shearer not understanding how the internets work. Or having advisors who don’t quite get it either.

        • David H 3.6.1.2

          I can’t post I get an error every time, and NO matter how much I E-Mail them, they won’t fix it.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.6.2

        How else are we going to ge them to listen?

        Don’t bother trying – Shearer just proved that, no matter what you do, he isn’t listening.

        • Rosie 3.6.2.1

          Sigh. Yeah, I know DTB, or rather, I give up. I think he is in head in sand territory. Privately he might be in head in hands territory but can’t find the way to front up and face it.

      • QoT 3.6.3

        thats basically people sitting in front of their computers

        I think he’s going for some kind of riff on “interviewing their keyboards”. However the problem for Shearer – or whoever came up with that line – is that a hell of a lot of people spend quite a bit of their day “sitting in front of their computers”. We’ve got Stuff Nation, for fuck’s sake. That’s a lot of “ordinary New Zealanders” with their fingers typing away, it’s hardly nerds-only territory …

        • gobsmacked 3.6.3.1

          It also runs counter to his statement last week: “Now we’ve all got Skype”.

          That would be news to a lot of Labour voters.

      • Vicky32 3.6.4

        I found that quite offensive, arrogant and pretty rude given that he is referring to potential Labour supporters and voters

        It is to laugh, as Bugs Bunny says. When I first questioned the anti-Shearer hate campaign when it got started at the beginning of the year, I was informed that the anti-Shearer people are all Greenies, therefore generally more honest, decent, etc, than Labour people…
        (Richer too, and that’s not to be sneezed at, he?)
        All the crocodile tears for beneficiaries from the anti-Shearer people make me projectile vomit.

        • Rosie 3.6.4.1

          Hi Vicky at post # 3.6.4. You’ve quoted me and in the same sentence you’ve referred to the “anti Shearer hate campaign”. Just because I and many others can’t support Shearer as the leader of the opposition doesn’t mean I/we/whoever hate him. It’s not personal, its practical. I’m not into hating up on folks. I save hate (as a form of disempowerment, frustration and anger) for very special occasions, such as our current govt, not for those I would normally stand beside.

          Also, please don’t assume that all Green supporters are rich. You might be heading into stereotype territory there. I support the Greens, always have, and respect their work but I’m as broken arse as they come. No, I’m not a beneficiary but at the same time its not crocodile tears I’ve shed, as you’ve pointed out that the “anti Shearer campaign” have done. It is genuine despair that I feel that at the way that mostly Key, Bennett, retards of NZ inc and Co, but also Shearer have belittled and attacked their fellow NZers. It really sucks. Labour have left their roots Vicky and I’m only about the gazillionth person to say it. I wish that wasn’t the case and I’d still love to vote for them but with Shearer in charge I can’t. Its feels crappy and a bit sad.

          Don’t know if you saw 3news tonight but Clayton Cosgrove dismissed journalists questions about the validity of the Labour Party leadership as “its just the blogosphere”. If thats how they respond to their potential and actual voter base can you really trust them to respect you as a voter?

          • Vicky32 3.6.4.1.1

            No, I’m not a beneficiary but at the same time its not crocodile tears I’ve shed, as you’ve pointed out that the “anti Shearer campaign” have done

            Well, I am a beneficiary, and not one of the ‘good’ ones (I am not brown, I am not a solo mother (any more) or under 25.) When the rubber meets the road, to use a cliche, Shearer has helped me and others, with issues we have had with Housing NZ and with WINZ, and that matters more to me than his being perfectly politically correct.
            As for what Cosgrove said, no, I didn’t hear it (I don’t watch 3 News, I listen to it) but from what I see around me, and what I hear, he was correct. Afaik, it is the blogosphere.
            Oddly, I find myself wishing very much that I did come into one of the favoured categories – if I were under 25 I’d have a much better chance of getting a job. The new owner of the language school, that I wrote about on Friday, fired all the previous staff, and everyone he hired to replace them is under 25, and everyone fired, was over 40. I was in there today, with one of those fired staff, she was collecting her property, and I was providing moral support. We spoke to one of the students, and her whispered comment (as the new owner was ear-wigging) about her  new teacher was “She’s very young, isn’t she?” Keith seems not to have realised that international students have no faith in teachers who are younger than they are, and that hiring 18-23 year olds because you can pay them in washers is not such a crash-hot idea.

      • David H 3.6.5

        Well as I wrote earlier A Green / Mana / Labour decimated and all the deadwood gone Hmm Not such a bad outcome after all.

    • Stephen Doyle 3.7

      From memory, Labours polling after Clark had been leader for about a year were hovering just below 20%. Should the paryt have dumped her then?

      • gobsmacked 3.7.1

        No, they shouldn’t have dumped a former deputy PM and experienced politician with a strong base in the party, a formidable intellect, an impressive grasp of the issues and a total commitment to self-discipline, and the authority to discipline others.

        But they should dump David Shearer, because he isn’t any of those things.

        • muzza 3.7.1.1

          formidable intellect, an impressive grasp of the issues and a total commitment to self-discipline, and the authority to discipline others.

          Except when she was interviewing and things did not go as Herr Helen liked, then the tears and blathering would come out.

          Wonder where she leant such discipline anyway, and wonder if she really thought the faux marriage to the dodgy pervert actually fooled anyone that it was not about hiding both their sexuality from the public. Media sure did a cracking job sitting on that for so many years, and still now it doesnt get much mention. Nah its not about Helens preferences, thats fine, and her business, its about the lies!

          Helen Clarke, got as high up at the UN because she is a “great politician & human being”, and contributed so much to humanity! /sarc

          Argh, the lies people accept!

          PS – Cunliffe has got far too much inside knowledge, having been a member of the Clarke governement, there will be little he is not aware of….How effective can he be given he is part of the establishment, therefore accomplice to the corruption which rules our parliamentary system!

      • Rhinocrates 3.7.2

        That was two decades ago. There are voters alive today who weren’t even born then and they’ve grown up on twitter and blogs. I may not like it, but it’s a fact. Even assuming that Shearer’s a nice guy (and so what?… and I don’t think that a bene-basher is, BTW), he’s simply not effective in this age. Obama won by knowing who the voters are, not what they “should” be.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.8

      [lprent: Fixed links – watch out for the trailing ‘ on links. ]

      Actually, you just broke them in a different way – the NZH doesn’t use trailing / on their URLs.

    • Murray Olsen 3.9

      David, your prediction for 2014 is the best argument I have seen for having Shearer as Labour leader.

    • David H 3.10

      Thank you. I will.

  4. karol 4

    Excellent report by Eugenie Sage: The Green Party Minority Report – Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill.  It incorporates responses from some public submissions on the Bill.  

    Particularly of concern are the cutting back of the kinds of activities local councils are involved in (focus on “core” services) , increased government intervention, increasing the power of mayors

    The main things the Green Party opposes: 

    – The changes to the purpose of local government and the deletion of the “four well-beings” (social, economic, environmental and cultural);

    – The increased mayoral powers;

    – The loss of democracy represented by the increased powers of Ministerial intervention and the processes for how and when this will be used;

    – The content of the fiscal benchmarks and

    – The undemocratic procedures and criteria for council re-organisation

    Also, important is the fact that the proposed changes are not supported by relevant evidence:

    The lack of sound data and information or any robust analysis to support the changes in the Bill risks it being ineffective, having unintended consequences, and putting additional costs on councils and ratepayers, such as to amend long term plans.

    And, Lynn, I got to this document (and other significant web pages/articles/posts) from the new RSS feeds on the right – very useful, thank-you.

  5. karol 5

    Gaynz editorial: open letter to John Key [on gay red shirt issue].

    It explains why the use of such language is an important political issue, and slams the Nats on their anti-gay record.

    I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again: your party seems to be the natural political home for homophobia, whether you like it, or understand it, or want it, or not. From the lowliest newbie MPs right up to yourself your party continues to be steeped in the subtle homophobia of the street, the bar and the schoolyard.

     

    • Nearly half their party are homophobic if we take the recent gay marriage vote as evidence.

      • muzza 5.1.1

        I’d re-examine that if I were you..

        The systems are full of people who are being arm twisted into the decisions that are making, and you can apply this to other sectors which “govern, direct and dicate” our lives.

        The question is, what are they being “arm twisted” about!

    • weka 5.2

      Very good editorial. Maybe we should start a trend of using the word Key to mean fuckwit. “Do you have to be such a Key?”

  6. Jackal 6

    Blood in the water

    It has been rather disconcerting to read some of the commentary about all round nice guy David Shearer recently, not least because it takes the focus off more important issues. Of particular concern is the amount of articles that completely write him off without a second chance, and as far as I can tell, without really giving any valid reasons for doing so…

    • weka 6.1

      I don’t know which articles you are talking about because the ones I’ve read acknowledge Shearer has had plenty of chances, and give logical, valid reasons for him stepping down. Your paragraph above reads like opinion dressed up as fact. By all means support Shearer, but please don’t make out that people who want him gone don’t have any valid reasons and haven’t given him a chance.

    • Uturn 6.2

      From your blog:

      “Then there’s the claim that Shearer doesn’t hold true to Labours principles, as apparently exhibited by the painter on the roof comments. Despite the various misrepresentation of what Shearer said, I think it’s safe to say that he does believe in a fair and equal society, as exhibited by the brevity and contents of his speeches and press releases. Claims that he’s somehow anti-welfare are quite obviously incorrect, and only promoted by the ignorant or those with a vested interest in seeing his political demise.”

      I remember the intellectual tools you used to pull apart Paul Holmes utterances. Use those same tools on Shearers speeches and you’ll see what his detractors have been seeing since his first speech. If Shearer cannot understand basic political rhetoric, he has limited use as a spokesperson for anything. You may think this doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be a leader – a silent leader perhaps? Why not, any policy should be able to stand on it’s own regardles of who presents it.

      If someone spends all their time saying something that seems hostile, something that can’t conclusively be proven to be so – since no one can ever truly know the contents and intent of another man’s mind and because words and logic can be pretty, but limited – the only thing left to do is wait and see what happens.

      The problem many people have, is that they’ve spent their lives observing people they would prefer to be good – despite the indicators. They want and desperately need other people to be good, and choose it as default judgement. It’s called good faith and the world would be a much worse place if some people did not fight to uphold that concept. The line between good faith, naivety and romanticism becomes blurred when logic is dismissed entirely. People will hold out years, decades, to find the good they see in others and instead one day they find that it isn’t coming. They review the years of action and words and they have to face the fact it all adds up to a picture they wish didn’t exist. They’re then faced with a tough choice.

      Experience and logic blind us to possibility, tie us to the known, strangle the life out of the new. Hope and naivety can make us creative visionaries, laying the foundation for advancements or just suckers for punishment. But reality is reality. When the moment comes that each person makes their own decision, there is no right or wrong, just a bet on a roll of the dice.

      • Jackal 6.2.1

        Fair enough Uturn, you make a compelling argument. Just a few things though… My pulling apart of Holmes’ rhetoric was mainly about his racism, and I see nothing similar in Shearer. I’m also aware that he does need to step up to the plate so to speak, but its policy in my opinion that Labour should focus on, not personality politics.

        You’re entirely correct that what people want can cloud their vision of reality. However I don’t believe that’s the case with my observations on David Shearer, and I’m open to the possibility that he’s not right for the job. The main question remains largely unanswered though… Is there anybody better placed to achieve Labours victory at the next election, especially considering the instability caused by changing leaders now?

        I wonder if they care about who we advocate for anyway, and after reading today’s Herald article “Shearer plays down leadership row”, it would appear that they don’t. Not much has changed in that respect since Helen Clark was in charge then. Pity!

        In my opinion, throwing the dice on such things as leadership is not advisable… But I’ve more than chafed my bit on this issue. Let’s hope it all works out in the end.

        • Uturn 6.2.1.1

          I’m sure it will work out in the end.

          On Shearer’s “racism” it could certainly be proven logically, but logic cannot prove if he intended to include a racist element, or whether it is a symptom of poor rhetoric i.e. the gaps in the message are so wide they could mean anything. The measure we normally use, “reasonable doubt”, would rest on a person’s perspective. It certainly isn’t at the same level of intent as Holmes openly saying maori – or anyone else – are this or that. Shearer’s constant promotion of Pakeha middle-class values and attitudes could be said to be racist. The environment he works in and the position he holds will encourage him to take that approach whether he wants to or not. This would be a difficult thing to escape for any politician in our system. Even Hone Harawira likes to play with the idea of Maori abandoning their roots for money and moving to Australia.

          On the question of who is better placed to lead Labour to victory next election, if we agree that Labour’s policy is all that matters, it doesn’t matter who leads. It only matters who can promote the policy effectively, interpret it for all scenarios, to make it sound like it’s always fresh. Shearer could do the simple memorise-the-script exercise, but for whatever reason, he can’t re-fit it for all scenarios and variations. Then we get those explanations about what he really meant that meanader in contradictions. If winning is all that matters to Labour, all they need do is enforce an internal environment where everyone sticks to their area of concern, find one salesperson among them to take on the “leader role” and set them loose in the media. Then after they win they can go back to whatever they were up to, safe in the knowledge they have three years to sort it out.

    • Colonial Viper 6.3

      It has been rather disconcerting to read some of the commentary about all round nice guy David Shearer recently

      I want an all round nice guy as a neighbour looking after my dogs for the weekend, and collecting my mail when I head on holiday for a week.

  7. I’m annoyed with shearers attitude to the bloggers that question his leadership,after all it is a democratic right to question the leader of a party if you are not happy with him/her.
    There are traditional labour supporters/voters/followers who comment on all sorts of blogs and
    media outlets, are they nonsense too ?
    Shearers next blog should be ignored as well.

  8. gobsmacked 8

    “basically people sitting in front of their computers giving their opinions”

    That says it all, really. A 14th century monarch could only agree.

    Future definitions by David Shearer

    “people coming along, giving their opinions” (= party conference)

    “people answering the phone, giving their opinions” (= opinion polls)

    “people with a piece of paper, giving their opinions” (= elections)

  9. lprent 9

    Damnit. The Recommend button for Facebook is dead again. No change to the code. I guess that they have changed something in the API yet again.

    Fix this evening.

  10. Rogue Trooper 10

    an interesting symbiosis between The Herald and The Standard today; all those links from the Shearer article: like magic

  11. FYI.

    Why have proven ‘anti-corruption’ civil society ‘whistleblowers not been invited to today’s launch of the NZ National Integrity System Assessment?

    http://www.victoria.ac.nz/home/viclife/events/conferences/new-zealand-national-integrity-system-assessment

    OPEN LETTER TO TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL NZ, THE OFFICE OF THE AUDITOR-GENERAL, VICTORIA UNIVERSITY INSTITUTE FOR GOVERNANCE AND POLICY STUDIES:

    Today, in Wellington, you are ‘launching the New Zealand National Integrity System Assessment.
    Leading us into the future’.

    Your graphic illustrating ‘National Integrity Foundations’, covering ‘Politics – Society – Economy – Culture’ – shows thirteen ‘pillars’ upon which this ‘National Integrity’ is supposedly based.

    These thirteen pillars include:

    Legislature
    Executive
    Judiciary
    Public Sector
    Law Enforcement
    Electoral Management Body
    Ombudsman
    Audit Institution
    Anti-Corruptiion Agencies
    Political Parties
    Media
    Civil Society
    Business

    Having studied your programme, and having checked the backgrounds of your speakers and facilitators, I fail to see one person who could be said to represent ‘Civil Society’?

    (Perhaps not all ‘pillars’ are equal? Perhaps some ‘pillars’ are more significant than others?)

    I say this an a recognised ‘Anti-corruption activist’ / ‘Whistleblower’ who has attended two significant Anti-Corruption Conferences – the Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference in Brisbane in 2009, and the Transparency International Anti-Corruption Conference in Bangkok in 2010.

    My track record is proven in fighting for a genuinely ‘open, transparent and accountable’ NZ local and central government and judiciary.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/central-leader/21588/Hubbard-defends-big-water-bills

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10602660

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10655565

    Had I known about this event – I would have made the effort to attend.
    Not only was I not notified – it was only by chance that I even discovered that it was happening.

    However, given my previous treatment by Transparency International NZ – I am not surprised that myself, and other ‘civil society / anti-corruption Public Watchdogs/ Whistleblowers’ were not notified.

    In 2009, not only did Transparency International NZ refuse to accept me (and others) as a member (no reasons were given), but at the November 2009 AGM, after being denied access to the TINZ AGM address by the Attorney-General (which was open to non-members), again – with no reasons given, myself and judicial ‘Public Watchdog’ – Vince Siemer, were arrested for trespass.

    http://kiwisfirst.co.nz/index.asp?PageID=2145845357#transparency-international-new-zealand

    “TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL NEW ZEALAND ORDERS ARREST OF ANTI-CORRUPTION ADVOCATE

    11 December 2009

    In a stinging irony – on United Nations International Anti-Corruption Day no less – Chairman Gerald McGhie of Transparency International’s “autonomous” New Zealand chapter ordered Police to arrest public watchdog Penny Bright for trespassing at its Annual General Meeting on Wednesday. This was despite the government-funded group riding her coat-tails as a watchdog front ostensibly focused on increasing transparency and exposing corruption. Attendees were given pamphlets with the bold heading “CORRUPTION RUINS LIVES – FIGHT BACK”.
    ………………………….
    ________________________________________________________________________________

    The Police later dropped the charges – but what sort of purported ‘anti-corruption’ organisation treats genuine ‘anti-corruption activists’ like that?

    ________________________________________________________________________________

    It is with some concern that I note the prominent role being played in the establishment of this ‘National Integrity System’ by some of the major accountancy firms, such as Deloitte, KPMG, PwC – who arguably have a vested interest in New Zealand being ‘perceived’ as ‘the least corrupt country in the world’ – when the reality, in my considered opinion, is that New Zealand is actually a corrupt, polluted tax haven.

    For example – to whom is the money going in New Zealand in the establishment of ‘foreign trusts’?

    The role of international accountancy firms has been highlighted by internationally acknowledged experts such as Professor Prem Sikka, with whom I am in regular contact.

    http://www.publishwhatyoupay.no/conference/speaker/prem-sikka
    ________________________________________________________________________________

    FYI – I have ‘blown the whistle’, nationally and internationally, and sent the following post around the world on 10 November 2012:

    To members of the international Tax Justice Network / separately to my latest Transparency International Secretariat and individual country ‘chapter’ list / to 70 World Bank folk whose addresses I found on the World Bank website / to all NZ MPs / to all Auckland Council elected reps (council + Local Boards) / NZ and some international media / NZ human rights groups …… etc….

    Transparency International were in the middle of their 15th International Anti-Corruption Conference, and should be announcing any time soon their 2012 ‘Corruption Perception Index’.

    (Which isn’t very transparent – given that it is based upon the subjective opinions of anonymous business people?)
    ……………………………………………….. ”

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  12. Fortran 12

    Shearer backed by Norman and Winston will lead the country after the next election.
    Shearer will make a good job of our Prime Minister as he grows with the role.
    The Nats simply cannot coddle enough MMP seats to retain a third term, so it is natural fall to Labour.

  13. Government ignores responsibility and demonstrates little concern for job losses:
    http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.co.nz/2012/11/defending-indefensible.html

  14. McFlock 14

    My goodness, I just realised I’m wondering where the next Roy Morgan poll is, nay even eagerly anticipating it! I must go and get some fresh air…

  15. Vicky32 15

    3 News is Little America again… sigh…
    In an item about the BBC, the reporter refers to someone walking out of an interview because he was behind ‘sked-yool’… :D
    Then, they make a point of referring to Mr McAfee, of anti-virus fame, being wanted for murder, as “Briddish Born”… perish the thought that a murderer could be American – even though Stuff  refers to him as a US citizen. It’s not a big deal, but it just struck me as bizarre. 
    Wikipedia thinks he is an American…
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_McAfee
    Now, Hil’ry Berry is banging on about the leadership challenge to Shearer. The Standard wants Shearer to go, says the reporter.
    Well, I for one, don’t want Shearer gone!
     

    • millsy 15.1

      I was a cautious supporter of Shearer, then I got a bit iffy about him, but I now think that he should stay. It’s all well and good to say, ‘let’s stick Cunliffe in’, but what if he turns out a dissapointment, do we ditch him and appoint someone else? Do we just go through Robertson, Ardern, Little, Curran? The ALP tends to do that, and look where that got them…

      Perhaps the likes of Mallard, Dyson, King, etc needs to go instead.

  16. millsy 16

    Anyone notice that Matt McCarten didnt have his column in the HoS Sunday?

  17. PlanetOrphan 17

    Nice work getting the TV promos guys, not a cent spent? …. sweet M8! O-:

    Whats next ? ….
    More links in the Herald/Truth/KiwiBlog etc etc etc ?
    A set “The Standard” as your homepage promo maybe ?

    “The Standard” Flyers at the Bank/Post Office/Pub/Cafe ?
    The Dreaded email campaign ? )-|

    H8 me yet anyone ? (-:

    4000 more hits this month, not bad Lads but we can do better!
    No More HypnoToad!!

    • PlanetOrphan 17.1

      Union tables in the Standard from a foggy memory 25 years ago …..

      • Colonial Viper 17.1.1

        Yep, the Standard should be able to hit an order of magnitude above that. A little bit more marketing and self promotion and some interesting things will happen.

      • Jackal 17.1.2

        I wouldn’t mind reading some of the older The Standard publications from the 1930’s onwards. It would be interesting to compare what they were writing about then to today’s topics. Wonder if there are any old copies lying around the place?

        • r0b 17.1.2.1

          I have one borrowed copy, 1938 I think. I mean to scan it (so I can return it), then start posting articles from it. Must get on to that…

  18. RedBaron 19

    Chris Trotter is at it with his myopia again.

    “To appreciate fully the inhumanity of [unemployment] you have to see the hurt and despair in the eyes of a man suddenly told he is redundant without provision made for suitable alternative employment . . . Someone, somewhere has decided he is unwanted, unneeded, and is to be thrown on the industrial scrap heap. ”

    It isn’t only men who are made redundant Chris. What about the large number of single parent, working women, who are not only likely to be underpaid relative to men when they are working, but as the sole support if a family, both they and the children suffer from any redundancy. There simply isn’t the same number of single parent families headed by males, so when a male loses a job there is likely to be another potential income earning adult in the household.

    BTW I know that redundancy is dreadful for anybody, but it seems Chris limits his sympathy to only one group. His workers seem to consist of only adult males, nobody young, nobody female. Perhaps he’d like to reflect on the groups that returned Obama to power.

    • kiwicommie 19.1

      The problem about New Zealand RB is NZ’ers are cowards when it comes to protesting and standing up against the elites and the government, as a result our occupy movement only contained a few determined students and lecturers. Remember it was the left that opposed the Springbok tour, while the right such as John Key stood silent and only saw rugby balls in their eyes. Why is society so scared to come out on the streets, like in Spain, Greece or even the US?

      My guess is because New Zealand is conditioned to shut up and do what it is told, blindly follow and ignore social injustice. Most New Zealanders ignore politics and party away, ignoring the beggar on the street. But when they fall on hard times only then do they realize the truth, that most of the country have forgotten what compassion, empathy or community really is. National’s religion is selfishness, as is the religion of their supporters.

      • muzza 19.1.1

        KC – You are spot on…

        You can see the mentality here by those who think that blogging means anything, or makes a genuine differnce..

        What the internet does, is allows people into a false sense of contribution and involvement, when in fact the “elite” will be more than happy with people sitting on their arses typing shit which is not making a difference!

        Hell, just take a look at what the Greeks et al are getting from their real life protests, SFA other than another good hiding and some tear gas, rubber bullets and riot police!

        Yeah, typing words is really making the world of difference here!

    • Jim Nald 19.2

      Maybe Chris might like to consider writing from the perspective of Christine Trotter.

    • Colonial Viper 19.3

      FOR FRAKS SAKE

      Shall I attempt a rewrite to satisfy the Labour Party/Liberal Left’s minimum PC quotient requirement for fully inclusive language?

      “To appreciate fully the inhumanity of [unemployment] you have to see the hurt and despair in the eyes of a man, woman, or transgendered individual, whether single or attached, and if they have children, in the eyes of their children too, suddenly told he (or their partner, or parent, as is applicable) is redundant without provision made for suitable alternative employment . . . Someone, somewhere has decided he (she, they) is (are) unwanted, unneeded, to be thrown on the industrial scrap heap. ”

      Now that we’ve hit the minimum PC quotient for fully inclusive language, can we get on with the FRAKING POINT that Trotter was trying to make – that being made redundant with no alternatives hurts and causes despair to the person it happens to.

      No wonder Labour/the Left is nowhere and going fast.

      By the way. In his Sickness Bene Bashing speech did Shearer specify that the bene in question was male, female, transgendered? Because it’s very important that you don’t bash people in an inequitable way.

      • McFlock 19.3.1

        Thanks for that public broadcast from “Waitakere Man”. 

        • Colonial Viper 19.3.1.1

          And thanks for confirming my point.

          • McFlock 19.3.1.1.1

            Meh.
                     
            I just don’t see why you’d be outraged that people are pointing out the hypocrisy of complaining about social maltreatment in our society while reinforcing other forms of social maltreatment. 

            • Colonial Viper 19.3.1.1.1.1

              I think I made it pretty damn clear why I was “outraged” McFlock: but feel free to continue supporting the languaging police against social maltreatment .

              I suppose Labour doesn’t want the Waitakere Man vote anyways.

              Or the Waikato Man vote or the Taranaki Man vote or the Wairarapa Man vote or the Marlborough Man vote or the McKenzie Man vote or the Taupo Man vote, or the Otago Man Vote or the Southland Man vote or the Hawkes Bay Man vote or the King Country Man vote.

              Oh look! Labour hardly holds any seats in each of those areas, what a co-incidence!

              • McFlock

                Oh, well then. Shearer should probably amend the RMA so putting cowshit in our rivers isn’t a problem.

                Or are you suggesting that the only way to get any vote is to pretend other portions of the country don’t exist? I see Robert Moulden is of voting age. Maybe you want Shearer to buy some spray paint?

              • Uturn

                I agree with your anger at the counterproductive nature of mindless stereotypes. I’ve squealed about them before myself. The point is that a politically constructed derogatory term that simply uses a place name and a gender is the highest level of stupid. It will capture individuals who might ally themselves with a supportive point of view and instead isolates them. Doesn’t matter if the term is Urban Gays, Northland Maori, Taranaki Man, The Disabled or Housewives. It’s lazy and stupid. It could be argued that those isolated types should then just magically find the bridge to freedom themselves, detaching their identity from their past, but it takes time – longer than a three year term. It could be argued that no one can be allied with an ideology that can only end in the death or oppression of the ally. If that person defers to good faith, they can then see that a person can support the good in another’s ideas, without disabling their own self-preservation. This is the trouble created by politicians simulating enemies to push against, just so there is a point to illuminate or something to say. There is a faster, more direct, plain english way. For example:

                “To appreciate fully the inhumanity of [unemployment] you have to see the hurt and despair in the eyes of a person suddenly told they’re redundant without provision made for suitable alternative employment . . . Someone, somewhere has decided they’re unwanted, unneeded, and is to be thrown on the industrial scrap heap. ”

                The scope for understanding within the article is then widened considerably – especially for the author. It brings all people together for a shared the message, also tending to details of difference. In our current time of crisis, sharing the known effects of defunct beliefs is important. Yes, sections of society have it tougher than others. The article could deal with each in turn, or defer those who have a direct understanding; once again showing how not having a livelihood can effect anyone and illustrating beliefs that contribute to covert hurdles.

                The recent marriage amendmnet bill was an excellent example of this approach. It was about equality under law for all people to marry. It did not force those who did not want to marry some people to go against their wishes. By not forcing other people to do anything differently than they already did, it did not further divide an already divided people into smaller groups. By not forcing other people, did it suppress the voice of a minority? Not at all.

                Talking about things, at a higher political level, that collectively effect all people does not actively silence minority voices or make social prejudice go away. If a party or political faction wavering at 30% in the polls thinks dividing 30% by anything is going to help them win, they better think again.

      • Vicky32 19.3.2

        Now that we’ve hit the minimum PC quotient for fully inclusive language, can we get on with the FRAKING POINT that Trotter was trying to make – that being made redundant with no alternatives hurts and causes despair to the person it happens to.

        Well said, CV!

      • QoT 19.3.3

        Because of course it’s simply impossible to construct that paragraph using the all-inclusive word person. :roll:

  19. Jenny 20

    For the fourth straight day, Israeli airstrikes are pounding Gaza.

    Yesterday, Gaza’s main resistance factions, including the Big Two of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, offered a truce if Israel “stops its aggression”.

    The Israeli answer has been – more airstrikes.

    And there are indications that Tel Aviv is seriously calculating a major military offensive against the Palestinian enclave.

    Yesterday, prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened a meeting of Israel’s foreign ambassadors in what was widely seen as a mission to claim international sympathy for an onslaught against Gaza.

    Israel’s leading daily newspaper said Washington had already green-lighted such an Israeli operation.

    It remains to be seen how much is politicking and bluff by Netanyahu and his inner cabinet, and how much is a real escalation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by the Zionist regime in Tel Aviv.

    Kia Ora Gaza’s website, kiaoragaza.net, has been carrying multiple daily reports on these potentially serious developments. Here’s a link to their latest story, courtesy of the Palestinian news agency Ma’an:

    http://kiaoragaza.wordpress.com/2012/11/13/israel-airstrikes-pound-gaza/

    • Colonial Viper 20.1

      Don’t complain about Israel, they’ve now initiated artillery direct attacks on Assad positions in Syria, so they’re the good guys, right?

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    frogblog | 20-11
  • The greatest tragedy of our time
    This is going to ruffle a few feathers. We are parasites. Yes you read that correctly – humanity is a giant collective parasite sucking the life juices from dear Mother Earth. I’m not a nihilist. I still believe there’s plenty...
    On the Left | 20-11
  • Proving anecdotes are reliable
    Here’s one to go with Let’s rely on anecdotes instead! Something I picked up on Facebook Similar articles  ...
    Open Parachute | 20-11
  • Class warfare in the UK
    Surprise, surprise! An independent study has shown that the UK's conservative government has been driving a massive transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich:A landmark study of the coalition’s tax and welfare policies six months before the general...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • That didn’t take long
    National's new teabreak law isn't even in force and employers are already abusing it:Yesterday a union member, who prefers to remain anonymous for fear of retribution, emailed Hotel Organiser Shanna Reeder. “This morning in the briefing our manager declared that...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • Justice is more important than international relations
    Yunus Rahmatullah is a Pakistani citizen. In 2004 he was disappeared by British forces in Iraq. The British then gave him to the Americans who rendered him to Afghanistan and kept him there without charge or trial for ten years,...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • The Sutton debacle
    Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: it’s not a good thing, except when you’re playing Frank Zappa’s 1988 instrumental album Guitar, in which case ‘Sexual Harassment in the Workplace’ is the opening track, and it’s a stonker. However, setting aside the...
    Occasionally erudite | 20-11
  • The dangers of ignoring context
    Here’s a 22 point plan for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.Entrench Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian lands.Never let a chance go by to duplicitously conflate Hamas and some in Fatah with the Islamic State/ISIS/ISIL so as to gild the imperiled-Israeli...
    Pundit | 19-11
  • Rapid transit has passed the acid test
    I recently ran across a New Zealand Herald article from 2000 on the region’s plans to start building good rapid transit infrastructure. (Which, as Patrick highlighted in a recent post, is exactly what is holding Auckland back relative to its...
    Transport Blog | 19-11
  • The week in politics vs. Gilmore Girls
    This week in politics: Andrew Little became leader of the Labour Party. Julia Gillard spoke at the University of Auckland about gender and politics. Gerry Brownlee was fined for breaching airport security. Tony Abbott threw down with Vladimir Putin at APEC....
    On the Left | 19-11
  • Whither the class line?
    In 1995 I published a book that explored the interaction between the state, organised labor and capital in the transitions to democracy in Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay. The book was theoretically rooted in neo-or post-Gramscian thought as well as the...
    Kiwipolitico | 19-11
  • This video shows the pain caused by NZ’s current benefit system
    Darryn bravely talks about the stigma that comes with being on the benefit, and how that has affected his life. This stigma is just one of the many problems our current benefit system creates. These problems would be removed if...
    Gareth’s World | 19-11
  • Climate change: The cost of past inaction
    For the past 20 years, New Zealand's climate change policy has been one of inaction and delay. While we've seen no less than four failed attempts at putting a price on carbon (including the current ETS), we've never really tried...
    No Right Turn | 19-11
  • Policy of fear
    Community groups have a vital role in New Zealand. In addition to speaking out on social problems such as poverty, mental illness and addiction, they also often have a direct role in fixing them via government funding. Unfortunately there's an...
    No Right Turn | 19-11
  • 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #47A
    A carbon tax could bolster wobbly progress in renewable energy A dam revival, despite risks Congress is about to sabotage Obama’s historic climate deal David Cameron urges Tony Abbott to do more on climate change G20 pledges lift Green Climate...
    Skeptical Science | 19-11
  • ‘Consult on promotions policy’: TEU to Auckland VC
    TEU is asking the vice-chancellor of the University of Auckland to engage in a process of consultation on the university’s Academic Grades, Standards and Criteria policy and other policies so the two sides can avoid further litigation. Earlier this month the...
    Tertiary Education Union | 19-11
  • Asia-Pacific plans for gender equality
    New Zealand is one of the few countries who have not sent a government minister to an Asian and Pacific conference on gender equality and women’s empowerment in Thailand, but it has sent TEU women’s officer Suzanne McNabb.  The conference...
    Tertiary Education Union | 19-11
  • TEC, Ministry and Treasury want new funding model
    The government should consider a radical shift in tertiary education funding policy according to advice from the Tertiary Education Commission, the Ministry of Education and the Treasury. All three agencies advise the government to shift tertiary education funding away from...
    Tertiary Education Union | 19-11
  • The awkward question of New Plymouth
    It’s rather common knowledge that Andrew Little wasn’t exactly a star in New Plymouth. He stood in the former Labour Party seat in 2011 and 2014, losing ground in both the electorate and party vote on each occasion. Overall, the...
    Occasionally erudite | 19-11
  • Academics say academic freedom getting worse
    Nearly two-fifths of academic staff say that their level of academic freedom is worse than when they started work, according to a survey on the state of the tertiary education workforce. AUT’s Work Research Institute undertook a State of the...
    Tertiary Education Union | 19-11
  • Academics say academic freedom getting worse
    Nearly two-fifths of academic staff say that their level of academic freedom is worse than when they started work, according to a survey on the state of the tertiary education workforce. AUT’s Work Research Institute undertook a State of the...
    Tertiary Education Union | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas. Staff and South Auckland community members had been campaigning to turn around the polytechnic’s proposal for mass redundancies since they were announced last...
    Tertiary Education Union | 19-11
  • Proud’s Britain
    Alex Proud has a very good long piece in the Telegraph that is as disturbing as it is accurate. The subject? Baby-boomers, and the way they have blindly robbed the generations that came after them. He is writing about Britain,...
    Polity | 19-11
  • This year’s (super) model: visualising atmospheric CO2
    Here’s a superb high resolution supercomputer visualisation from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center of the flows of CO2 in the atmosphere around the planet. Apart from being beautiful to look at, it shows the major sources of CO2 emissions in...
    Hot Topic | 19-11
  • Public Service Announcement: Advice to Andrew Little
    Over the last 48 hours absolutely everyone and his/her dog/cat has been publicly advising Andrew Little what he should with his front bench and much else decides. Good for them. Free speech is super. I won't be joining the chorus,...
    Polity | 19-11
  • Jordan uses Islam to battle ISIS
    My former UCLA colleague Larry Rubin, and my former Michigan colleague Michael Robbins, have a fascinating piece at the Washington Post's Monkey Cage blog overnight, all about how Jordan is setting Islam against ISIS: Many people in the Hashemite Kingdom...
    Polity | 19-11
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    Greens | 21-11
  • National opens door further to Chinese property speculators
    National has further opened the door to Chinese property speculators with the registration of a third Chinese bank here that will make it easier for Chinese investors to invest in New Zealand properties, the Green Party said today."As well, former...
    Greens | 20-11
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour | 20-11
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour | 19-11
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens | 19-11
  • National caught out on state house porkies
    Housing NZ’s annual report out today directly contradicts the Government’s claim that one-third of its houses are in the wrong place and are the wrong size, said Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The annual report states 96 per cent of...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Damning report on Department of Conservation restructure
    The restructuring of the Department of Conservation (DOC) following National's severe funding cuts has been revealed as failure, the Green Party said today.The Taribon report has reviewed the new structure of DOC after 12 months. The restructuring, one of the...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Greens welcome Xi, but human rights need to be on agenda
    The Green Party welcomes the visit to New Zealand of Chinese President Xi Jinping and wishes to congratulate him on his recent announcement regarding China capping emissions for the first time.The United States and China recently unveiled a deal to...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Backing New Zealanders to get ahead
    New Labour Leader Andrew Little says it is an immense privilege to have been chosen to lead the party and to be given the task of ensuring it once again becomes a powerful force that backs New Zealanders in getting...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Andrew Little Elected Leader of Labour Party
    “The Labour Party congratulates Andrew Little, who has been elected as party leader in a robust and highly democratic process,” says Labour Party President Moira Coatsworth. “Andrew’s leadership will have the full support of the whole Labour Party.”...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Report into Brownlee security breach should be released
    The Government and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) should release the report into former Minister of Transport Gerry Brownlee's airport security breach, the Green Party said today."The actions of a Minister of Transport breaching security at an airport are a matter...
    Greens | 17-11
  • Brownlee must ask CAA to release the report
    Gerry Brownlee must ask the Civil Aviation Authority to release the report that finds he broke the law in breaching airport security, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It is inexcusable for any minister, let alone the then-Transport Minister, to...
    Labour | 17-11
  • G20 climate comment increases pressure on NZ
    The G20 decision to include climate change in its communiqué despite Australia's attempt to ignore it, increases pressure on New Zealand to come up with a credible plan to cut emissions, the Green Party said today.The G20 Leaders Communiqué from...
    Greens | 17-11
  • NZ joins G20 climate problem
    Confirmation this morning by John Key that his Government plans to do nothing to turn around NZ's rapidly rising greenhouse emissions means that New Zealand joins Australia as one of the problem children at the G20 meeting in Brisbane, the...
    Greens | 16-11
  • IRD joins Corrections in Phillip Smith failure
    It is incomprehensible that IRD and Corrections were not able to stop Phillip Smith from rorting the tax system out of $50,000 until it was too late, given that he was a notoriously manipulative prisoner stuck in jail, says Labour’s...
    Labour | 13-11
  • The Government has to listen to Olly
    When even hard boiled property investors like Olly Newland  say first home buyers have been shafted by Loan to Value Ratio lending restrictions, surely it is time for the Government to listen, says Labour's housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  "Auckland landlord...
    Labour | 13-11
  • Key used GCSB for political ends prior to 2014 election
    New documents released to the Green Party show that Prime Minister John Key used New Zealand's intelligence services for the National Party's political ends a few days out from the 2014 election, the Green Party said today.Documents released to the...
    Greens | 13-11
  • Government not meeting its climate target
    The Government must front up to the fact that its own advisors are now saying that New Zealand is off target in any transition to a low carbon future, says Labour’s spokesperson on Climate Change Nanaia Mahuta.  “A briefing to...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Briefing reveals Defence facilities ‘increasingly unfit for purpose’
    The Defence Briefing to the Incoming Minister reveals a deteriorating state in Defence facilities that are no longer fit for purpose, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  “The briefing is heavily censored but still reveals that Defence camps, bases and...
    Labour | 12-11
  • New projections show New Zealand missing climate target
    Briefings to Incoming Ministers released today reveal the Government's climate policy is failing with projected emission more than double what is needed to meet National's 2050 target, the Green Party saidProjections released by the Ministry for the Environment, as part...
    Greens | 12-11
  • National’s highways far less efficient
    National’s new state highways have a far lower cost-benefit ratio than motorways built under the last Labour Government, making a mockery of the Government’s bluster that its road building will boost the economy, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “New...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Governor points finger at National on supply
    The Reserve Bank Governor has admitted he had to keep loan to value mortgage restrictions in place because the Government’s attempts to increase housing has fallen ‘a long way short’, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The thousands of first...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Did Collins cover up Slater’s OIA requests?
    Disgraced former Cabinet Minister Judith Collins must explain why she appears to have tried to hide Official Information Act requests she fulfilled for Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “New documents obtained by Labour show Judith...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Reserve Bank’s dairy warning must be heard
    The Reserve Bank’s warning that falling dairy prices are creating greater risks for the New Zealand economy must be taken seriously by Bill English and John Key, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “Dairy prices have nearly halved since February...
    Labour | 11-11
  • National’s housing failure keeps LVRs in place
    The Reserve Bank’s decision to leave loan-to-value ratio mortgage restrictions in place is further confirmation of National’s housing policy fiasco, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank would have lifted LVRs if they had seen any increase in...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Let’s see if it is plane sailing Mr Bridges
    Comments by Transport Minister Simon Bridges that Far North residents' anger over cutbacks to regional flights will be allayed by larger planes and cheaper fares out of Kerikeri, are just pure arrogance, says Labour’s Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis....
    Labour | 11-11
  • Commerce Commission inquiry needed into building supplies monopoly
    The Commerce Commission must stop dragging the chain and urgently investigate the anti-competitive practices in the building industry that are driving up the cost of building materials, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Competition in the building materials market is...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air New Zealand grounds Far North
    The announcement by Air New Zealand to close services from Kaitaia to Auckland will be an absolute disaster for the Far North, Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis says.  “Air New Zealand is sending a signal to the...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Pulling West Coast flights a savage blow
    Air New Zealand’s decision to withdraw its Westport service is another kick in the guts for an already struggling community, West Coast-Tasman MP, Damien O’Connor says.   “Having been involved in the West Coast’s efforts to get Air Nelson to return...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air NZ cuts economic lifelines to neglected regions
    Air New Zealand’s plans to cut its Eagle Air regional services to already struggling regions is a hammer blow to Westport, Whakatane and Kaitaia, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The regions of New Zealand are being abandoned by this...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Christchurch on the rent rack
    A jump of 20 per cent in weekly rents in the past year is a disaster for Christchurch, says Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Trade Me Property Rental Price index has rightly described the city as being a ‘...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Past time to act on warnings about palliative care
    Health officials have been warning the Government about a critical shortage of palliative care specialists for years, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Annette King says. A stocktake carried out for the Ministry of Health shows New Zealand’s end...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Report must spur Government into action
    The soaring cost of domestic violence and child abuse highlight the need for the Government to prioritise and act on the issue, says Labour's spokesperson for Social Development, Sue Moroney.“Findings from the Glenn Inquiry that show the problem is estimated...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Family safety paramount, then urgent review
    Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has some serious questions to answer over why a dangerous prison escapee, convicted of further crimes while in jail, managed to abscond while he was on approved temporary release, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“Phillip...
    Labour | 09-11
  • LVRs a failed experiment from Bill English
    Loan to value mortgage restrictions are a failed experiment from Bill English to tame Auckland house prices, that have caused collateral damage to first home buyers and other regions, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The possible end of LVR...
    Labour | 09-11
  • Govt books getting worse as economy slows
    National’s economic credibility is under serious scrutiny with its search for surplus becoming harder due to an economy far too reliant on the dairy industry, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National promised New Zealanders would get into surplus by...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Kiwis in pain because of Government underfunding
    New research showing one in three people needing elective surgery are being denied publicly-funded operations shows the Government must properly fund the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “For almost two years Labour has been warning about the...
    Labour | 06-11
  • National’s promised surplus looking doubtful
    Budget figures for the first quarter of the financial year released today by Treasury show the Government's goal of achieving a budget surplus is looking doubtful, the Green Party said today."National has staked its credibility on achieving a budget surplus...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour | 06-11
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour | 06-11
  • The Block NZ doing a better job than Nick Smith
    Nick Smith should consider calling in producers of The Block NZ with participants in the TV series completing more houses in two seasons than the Government’s failed Special Housing Area policy, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The Block NZ...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Meridian moves to kill competition from solar homes
    Big electricity companies are using their power to make it harder for families and businesses wanting to go solar and the National Government is doing nothing to help them, the Green Party said today. Meridian Energy announced today a 60-72...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Has John Key done all he could for Pike families?
    It will be forever on the conscience of John Key whether he did all he could to recover the remains of the 29 miners who died in Pike River, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says.  “The Prime Minister...
    Labour | 05-11
  • National further dashes hopes of new parents
    The National Government has once again shown its disdain for working parents by voting down proposals to extend paid parental leave, Labour MP Sue Moroney says.  “The Government vetoed an amended proposal that substantially reduced the cost of extending PPL...
    Labour | 05-11
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Why Phillip Smith is the least of our worries
    Well, it turns out Phillip Smith wasn’t half as clever as he thought he was, and he’s been arrested within a week. If the Prime Minister is through with making tasteless jokes, perhaps we can ramp down the media hysteria...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Constraining Credibility
      Most economists and members of the public – on both the right and the left – believe that economies are constrained by resource scarcity most of the time. In this view, economies are supply-constrained, and that the economic problem...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Migrant Labour, exploitation and free markets
    Once more we read about a horror story of virtual slavery for a migrant worker in a restaurant in Christchurch. The silver lining that in this case compensation should be paid is not assured. Often in situations like this the employer winds up...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • On baby boomers who give my generation unhelpful advice: JUST DON’T
    One of my mum’s colleagues recently told her that there is no money in what her daughter was doing; volunteering at a women’s refuge and writing on politics. This guy, dispensing all his pearls of wisdom, told my mother that...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Morbid Symptoms: Can Labour Be Born Anew?
    THE CHAIRS in the final meeting venue have been stacked away. All that expensive signage, commissioned for the benefit of the television cameras, no longer has a purpose. For the second time in just 14 months, Labour’s Leadership Contest is...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • What’s Small, White, and Having Trouble Attracting New People?
    If your answer was something intimately connected to the person of Peter Dunne … then you’d be right. Last night, P-Dunney decided to bring his comedy and/or hair stylings to the twitterverse; penning a potentially somewhat ill-advised tweet in which he compared...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • LATE at the Auckland Museum review – Slacktivisim: Its not just for Slack...
    Monday night is my yoga night. I’m not really very good it, I don’t really have the bendy, but I made a New Years resolution. This Monday however, I decided to put the yoga on prone and attend a gig...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Nanaia Mahuta – the Princess who roared
      This weeks Waatea news column – Nanaia Mahuta – the Princess who roared...
    The Daily Blog | 11-11
  • Real reasons to fear Government’s new approach to child poverty
    Now  I really am worried.  Selling state houses is bad enough but a taking a ‘social investment focus’ to deal with child poverty? “The Treasury will issue a Request for Information inviting submissions from people who work with vulnerable New...
    The Daily Blog | 11-11
  • Power to the people!
    With all the huffing and puffing of the election out of the way and the right-wing still in ascendancy after 30 years of community-sapping neoliberalism it was a pleasure to attend a strike by workers at Carl’s Jr in Lincoln...
    The Daily Blog | 11-11
  • EXCLUSIVE: OIA reveals WINZ trespassing 400 people a year
    W.I.N.Z is broken and it’s breaking my heart. Every year WINZ issues trespass notices to just under 400 people. 2008 / 418 2009 /  382 2010 /  347 2011 /  411 2012 /  373 2013 /  384 And this year...
    The Daily Blog | 11-11
  • So David Farrar and the Government were wrong on gangs after all?
    Oh the predictability of this… Ministers acted on inaccurate gang data Cabinet signed off tough new measures to tackle gangs on the basis of inaccurate information which over-estimated the scale of the crime problem. The briefing paper told ministers 4000...
    The Daily Blog | 10-11
  • Why lifelong prisoner surveillance is evidence of our failing prisons
    The intrusion of more and more State surveillance is easier to implement if the State begins with groups the populace are frightened of. Muslim radicals, Maori radicals, environmental radicals and prisoners are all easy fodder for ratings chasing media to...
    The Daily Blog | 10-11
  • REVIEW: The Blind Date Project
    The Blind Date Project Silo Theatre 4-29 November The Basement  Part of the excitement of a live performance, be it music or theatre or a circus with trapeze artists and lion tamers, is the risk that it could all go...
    The Daily Blog | 10-11
  • Good News For The Left!
    EVER SINCE the debacle of 20 September 2014, the New Zealand left has been hanging out for some good news. Today, thanks to Stephen Mills, the Executive Director of UMR Research, it has finally got some. UMR Research has for...
    The Daily Blog | 10-11
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Ashley Dwayne Guy v The Queen: Appeal Upheld
    The appellant, Mr Guy, was found guilty by a jury of a charge of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection. After the verdict it was discovered that, by error, the jury had been provided in the jury room with two...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Zonta Club to Take a Stand Against Gender-Based Violence
    During the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence (25 November – 10 December), the Zonta Club of Wellington, along with members of the local community, will join nearly 1,200 Zonta clubs in 67 countries for the Zonta Says NO...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • New UNFPA report links progress and power to young people
    A UN report launched today calls for investment in young people as they are essential to social and economic progress....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says: "Only in the public sector do you receive a payout for ‘resigning’....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ must not turn a blind eye to China’s human rights record
    Amnesty International is calling on New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key to raise China’s shameful human rights record during President Xi Jinping’s visit to New Zealand this week....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Treasury’s covert & extremely odd welfare consultation
    A report this morning that Treasury is ‘crowd sourcing’ ideas on welfare policy is news to Auckland Action Against Poverty, even though we are currently one of the most active groups in the area....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ invites Pacific peers to review development cooperation
    New Zealand has volunteered to be the first development partner in the Pacific region to undergo a review of its aid programme by Pacific island peers. The review will focus on New Zealand’s development cooperation and will give greater insight...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • EPMU joins Pike River families to mark fourth anniversary
    Representatives of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union are proud to stand with the Pike River families to mark four years since 29 men lost their lives. “This is a particularly solemn day given the recent announcements of Solid Energy...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • 2013 Assessment of New Zealand’s National Integrity Systems
    SPEAKER TUILOMA NERONI SLADE: Former Judge, International Criminal Court in the Hague, former legal counsel at the Commonwealth Secretariat, Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum 2008-2014. Introduced by Helen Sutch, Victoria University Council,...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Green Party ignoring Waimea’s environmental benefits
    Green Party MP Catherine Delahunty has overlooked the environmental benefits the proposed Waimea Community Dam will bring the Tasman community, says IrrigationNZ Chairperson Nicky Hyslop....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Women’s use of violence in violent relationships
    More than 80 percent of women who live with a physically violent partner will not initiate violence when they are not being hit, according to new research....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health
    Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health A credit score doesn’t only boil down a person’s entire financial history to a single number and somehow predict their credit-worthiness, it might also be saying something about a person’s...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • State Services Commissioner on Roger Sutton Investigation
    State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie today said the investigation into Roger Sutton’s conduct was robust. Roger Sutton chose to resign as Chief Executive of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) yesterday....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Predator Free NZ project welcomed
    Federated Farmers and the conservation organisation Forest & Bird are welcoming the Predator Free New Zealand initiative as an ambitious but achievable project that will have real benefits for conservation and the economy....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Stock rustling set to continue under lax laws
    The theft and illegal slaughter of farm stock can only be expected to continue if tougher laws are not introduced, said ACT Leader David Seymour today....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Visit of President Xi Jinping to New Zealand
    As president Xi Jinping of China pays short visit to New Zealand, of Friends of Tibet (NZ) has called upon Foreign Minister Hon Murray McCully and the Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key to raise the issue of Human Rights...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Right to Life Congratulates the new Labour Leader
    Right to Life congratulates Andrew Little MP, on being elected as the new leader of the Labour Party. This is a very important election as Andrew Little is now a Prime Minister in waiting His election follows a line of...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Reply to open letter on earthquake repair in Christchurch
    You raise many points and I acknowledge the frustration some people are experiencing when their homes are still not repaired or rebuilt. We have consistently said that the scale and complexity of events has always meant that it will not...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Andrew Little New Labour Party Leader
    In a press conference held on Tuesday in the Labour Party Caucus room at Parliament, it was announced Andrew Little had been voted in as Leader of the Labour party....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Liam Butler interviews Professor Jay Kandampully
    Jay Kandampully is Professor of Consumer Sciences in the Department of Human Sciences. He also serves as a visiting professor at University of Innsbruck, Austria; Nanjing University of Science and Technology, China; and Furtwangen University, Germany;...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
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