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Open mike 18/07/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 18th, 2012 - 65 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…

65 comments on “Open mike 18/07/2012”

  1. Bored 1

    Some headlines make you wonder how crazy we are when we allow this scenario….

    “Systems in history are defined above all by who controls the wealth,” Alperovitz says. “The top 400 people own more wealth now than the bottom 185 million Americans taken together. That is a medieval structure.”

    Makes me wonder how it looks here in NZ and how much that tiny group control our politics?

    http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2012-07-17/gar-alperovitz%E2%80%99s-green-party-keynote-we-are-laying-groundwork-next-great-revoluti

    • rosy 1.1

      Fits nicely with George Monbiot’s article After 800 years, the barons in control in Britain
      About young people trying to opt out of the corporate structure.

      But the alternatives have also been shut down: you are excluded yet you cannot opt out. The land – even disused land – is guarded as fiercely as the rest of the economy. Its ownership is scarcely less concentrated than it was when the Magna Carta was written.

      These things are related. The thing for me is that if you have no rights to collect or gather food or to create a shelter then the ‘barons’ have an obligation to ensure you have a means of exchange for those things. This is being seriously eroded in the UK and US and NZ is on the same path albeit closer to the beginning.

      • Carol 1.1.1

        The whole access to (and poor can’t create) shelter issue is at crisis point in NZ. There is a seriously lack of sufficient affordable housing, especially in Auckland. And all NAct can do is to set Bennett on to blaming (alleged) slum landlords.

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7296777/Bennett-challenged-to-visit-caravan-park

        The Waitakere MP yesterday singled out a caravan park in her electorate – Western Park Village – as “very expensive for what I’m sure most New Zealanders would see as quite substandard living”.

        But the park owner, Darryll Heaven, said they did everything they could for many tenants that were forced upon them by Work and Income.

        “That is absolute bulls . . . That really annoys me because she won’t get off her fat arse – she’s only 500 metres away – to come down and see us. We’ve got a dozen staff and we’re working 24 hours a day to control the place. She doesn’t understand that and if she thinks we’re ripping her off, come and have a look at our bottom line any time she likes.”

        My long-time experience of landlords, is that most of them are OK, and not out to rort me. But when there’s a shortage of affordable housing, the rents go up. Some prospective tenants are offering over the advertised rent, in order to secure accommodation. So what happens to those at the bottom of the income hierarchy?

        I remember being shocked a few decades back when I first heard of Americans living in trailer parks. I didn’t realise WINZ was recommending caravan parks for the unemployed here.

        But Mr Heaven said Western Park had a challenging task with its tenants.

        “Yes, there is a lot of sub-standard [housing] here. But we try to put the right people into the right accommodation and Winz will turn around and say, no, we’re not paying it, put them in a caravan.”

        The park supported tenants with a range of services “like medication and running a bus service”.

        • yeshe 1.1.1.1

          if we had real subs instead of walk-ins, the headline could have read:

          ” Heaven challenges Bennett to visit ”

          :-)

          • Te Reo Putake 1.1.1.1.1

            ‘Minister won’t go to Heaven’?
             
            ‘Fat Arse won’t fit through Pearly Gates’?
             
            ‘Bennett won’t go to Heaven; Devil denies entry to Hades: ‘We have standards too, you know’.’

        • DH 1.1.1.2

          “My long-time experience of landlords, is that most of them are OK, and not out to rort me.”

          I think you’ll find that’s changed a lot Carol. There’s a different breed entered the landlord market over the last decade or so, only need look at how many took up the opportunity to raise their rents in ChCh and Auck. A lot of them are venal parasites sucking the blood out of the working class. People in business at least pay workers for their labours, these leeches want to get rich off the toil of others and give nothing in return.

          To me one of the most offensive & contemptible acts of the last Labour Govt was giving property speculators more tax breaks via LAQCs etc. We pay a fortune in tax to support the underprivileged and the group who contribute the most to causing poverty in this country got to pay even less tax.

          • Carol 1.1.1.2.1

            DH, I do think that under certain circumstances the amount of exploitative and parasitic landlords increase: e.g. when there is a shortage of houses and little regulation of property speculation.

            To me this means housing can’t be left to the “market”, but government should create the conditions for there to be sufficient, safe and affordable housing.

            My experience of renting over the last decade or so in NZ as been good. I do think most landlords are not of the unfair and exploitative kind.

        • weka 1.1.1.3

          I remember being shocked a few decades back when I first heard of Americans living in trailer parks. I didn’t realise WINZ was recommending caravan parks for the unemployed here.
           

          I completely agree that there is a housing crisis in NZ. I do want to point out though that there are people in NZ living in caravans and quite happy with it. Some people even choose this over living in a house. There are also long standing communities existing in camp grounds that are completely legitimate ways for people to live together. Please do not automatically assume that living in a caravan or camp ground is a bad thing.
           
          I also think that as we get into energy descent we need to rethink what housing means. At this point in time it makes sense to try and build as many durable, well insulated, and easy to heat houses as we can, and obviously the govt should be prioritising resources to the most vulnerable people in the community. But a time will come when we don’t have the resources to build the way we do now, and we need to be thinking about that now.
           

          • Carol 1.1.1.3.1

            Agreed, weka. When I recently moved I considered getting a caravan. I would be happy living in one or in a camp. But I’m single and don’t have children.

            • Jim Nald 1.1.1.3.1.1

              For a start, members of Parliament should set the standard: non-Wellington based electorate MPs should live in caravans on the few nights of the week when Parliament is sitting.

              Times are tough and NZ has had to weather the Chch earthquake, etc etc and savings need to be made.

              The accommodation allowance for our value-for-money MPs, including Cabinet Ministers, can be capped at the level suitable for a basic caravan at a nearby caravan park. Shower and toilet can be accessed via Beehive & Bowen House.

        • Treetop 1.1.1.4

          In the last month or two Turia attended a world indigenous housing summit. There was an audible gasp from the audience when she said that 3 million was alocated for housing. I assume it was for indigenous housing from the NZ government.

          How much housing does 3 million buy?

      • Carol 1.1.2

        The Diggers 2012 movement that Monbiot writes about, is an interesting one. And this from one of the present day diggers, is relevant to NZ, Waitangi Tribunal issues, etc:

        As Simon Moore, an articulate, well-read 27-year-old, explained, “those who control the land have enjoyed massive economic and political privileges. The relationship between land and democracy is a strong one, which is not widely understood.”

        And Monbiot nails it here:

        The young men and women camping at Runnymede are trying to revive a different tradition, largely forgotten in the new age of robber barons. They are seeking, in the words of the Diggers of 1649, to make “the Earth a common treasury for all … not one lording over another, but all looking upon each other as equals in the creation”. The tradition of resistance, the assertion of independence from the laws devised to protect the landlords’ ill-gotten property, long pre-date and long post-date the Magna Carta. But today they scarcely feature in national consciousness.

      • Olwyn 1.1.3

        If you look at some of the rural areas, and the pressure on housing in the cities, we are further down that path than we like to imagine. And would be even further along still if Australia wasn’t absorbing our work force.

    • Rosie 1.2

      Thanks for the link Bored. There is always fascinating reading and listening on http://www.democracy.org. Amy Goodman shines a light in America’s murkiest places and it requires courage on her part often, to do so. If you haven’t read it already “Exception to the Rulers” which is co authored by her and among other things discusses the functions and social effects of the power elite.

      And yes, it does make you wonder how much of that influence makes it to our shores. Definitely we already have some really dodgy multi nationals operating here, that is known, but what about the hidden connections and agenda’s? They have their fingers in pies everywhere. Its quite chilling.

      I was recently told by a Scots new immigrant that one of the reasons he was drawn to NZ was because we are 20 years behind the rest of the world, in every respect. I felt he thought we were quite naive and quaint (I’m sure he’s not the only one!)So if things are bad enough here in regards to the weakening of our collective influence as a people, our access to common areas etc, and the people of USA and Britain are being to returned to a new feudalism under corporate rule, how long before we are totally absorbed by it too?

      Er, that would be http://www.democracynow.org

  2. Tony P 2

    Kelvin Smythe is always a good read on educational matters, especially concerning the current situation. Here’s his take on a John Roughan editorial from last week.

    http://www.networkonnet.co.nz/index.php?section=latest&id=431

    • Campbell Larsen 2.1

      Thanks for the link Tony. The practice of unattributed Editorials must stop – the only reason a name was not attached in the past was because everyone knew who the Editor was – now it could be any one of a number of different people. Given the often nauseating opinions expressed within there is no excuse for these so called journalists to be hiding behind the paper skirt of the institution. Sign the petition:

      http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/An_end_to_unattributed_anonymous_Editorials_in_New_Zealands_Newspapers/

      • Te Reo Putake 2.1.1

        “…  the only reason a name was not attached in the past was because everyone knew who the Editor was…”
         
        That is not the case at all. The leaders are attributed to the Editor because they are responsible for what is printed in the newspaper. It has been a journalistic tradition for quite literally centuries for deputy eds and other senior staff to share the editorial responsibilities. The editorials represent the views of the paper, not those of the hack writing them.

        • Campbell Larsen 2.1.1.1

          I stand corrected TRP – However tradition or no I can see no valid reason for readers to not be informed of who is responsible for the article. An editorial coveys an impression of authority – however there can be no authority without accountability. If ‘senior staff’ wish to say something then they should own it.

          • Te Reo Putake 2.1.1.1.1

            Cheers, Campbell. I note that the tradition is changing though and I think most regional newspapers now have an editorial that is openly written by the editor. Probably because there is no one else to do it, what with there being little need for real journalists these days!
             
            With a lot of journo’s encouraged to blog as well as publish articles, it is easier to see what individuals think. But, at heart, this is a philosophical question. That is, does the editorial line reflect the paper’s views or does it represent the views of individual writers? And does the paper’s views, as represented in editorials, nowadays more accurately reflect what the owners think, rather than the editor?

            • Campbell Larsen 2.1.1.1.1.1

              A paper cannot hold a ‘view’ or an ‘opinion’ these are person specific attributes. The words belong unequivocally to the author, the decision to publish is attributable to those whom have the authority to make the decision.
              My assertion is that the public have a right to know who writes the Editorials and who approves them. Only with this disclosure can we assess the context of the opinion on display, and hold the correct people accountable when this process appears to be corrupt.

              • Te Reo Putake

                Well, as I pointed earlier, papers do hold views. They promote an editorial line. That is why the Gaurdian is different from the Times, the NBR from the Kapiti Shopper. Not becaue of the individual reporters, but becaue this is a projection of how the title sees itself. All sorts of organisations have values that they seek to project publicly. That’s not a refelction of the individuals that work for them, but of how the organisations see themselves and how they want to be seen.
                 
                When I do media interviews, I do not speak for myself, I speak for my employer. And a good thing too, because I don’t think my employer wants to hear my personal views on the Randian Superheroes and other assorted incompetents I have to deal with every other day broadcast to the nation at 6pm. I put the view of the organisation I represent, which is what they expect of me and what newspapers expect of their leader writers.
                .

                • Campbell Larsen

                  I see where you are coming from, and I agree that the owner/ paper/ writer relationships do raise questions regarding journalistic Epistemology/ Ontology which are not easily settled.

                  With the transfer of more and more of the fourth estate into the hands of corporations who have few qualms about furthering their own interests the individual integrity of journalists is fast becoming the only separation between news and PR – that and the increasing ability of the public to challenge their authority and hold them to account.

                  Andrew Geddis has this to say in the comments when discussing a piece by John Roughan in the Herald:

                  the editor probably doesn’t regulate what the opinionators in his stable write, and all-in-all it probably is a good thing that he doesn’t (otherwise the paper would be a single voice on everything, which is not desirable).

                  Which suggests that in his opinion the diversity of views in editorials comes about from having a range of different views expressed, and that the choice on what to publish rests solely in the hands of The Editor (singular).

                  However how are we to be assured of a representative pool of contributors if this information is not publicly available and routinely displayed? In any case I’m not convinced that this results in a truly representative Editorial and can see no valid reason why this practice persists. Perhaps someone from a paper would like to defend the need for Editorial anonymity?

                  I understand the need for anonymity here on the Standard, having had one of my employers threatened over one of my comments here, but the Herald writers are professional journalists and routinely display their names in conjunction with their opinions, so why the discrepancy when it comes to the Editorial?

                  • Campbell Larsen

                    Edit: Which suggests that in his opinion the diversity of views in editorials comes about from having a range of different authors, and that the choice of which author to publish rests solely in the hands of The Editor (singular).

                    Insufficient proof reading before button pressing.

            • Campbell Larsen 2.1.1.1.1.2

              Oh the shifting sands of meaning TRP – until 2010 the editorial was wiki this:
              http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Opinion_piece&oldid=349195101

              The Oxford however is quite clear:
              http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/editorial

              The Public’s perception is that Oxford defines what we are getting when what we are actually being given is the newWiki – and that my friend is the problem.

  3. Dv 3

    This was on the 13th july
    So much for the openess touted by Parata

    A secret meeting of some members of the ministerial cross sector education forum is being held today, without the knowledge of many of the group’s members.

    The group – called the G30 – was formed in the wake of the government’s class size backdown and has been touted by education minister Hekia Parata as a way of ensuring such a disconnect with the sector did not happen again.

    However, PPTA has discovered a meeting is being is being held today of hand-picked members of the G-30 group, general secretary Kevin Bunker said.

  4. Tiger Mountain 4

    The media reports today (Herald) that ACC Minister ‘Crushless’ Collins has secured a High court date in Feb 2013 in the matter of the long whinged about (by her) alleged defamation by Andrew Little and Trev Mallard re brain injured Bronwyn Pullar’s ACC whistleblowing and surrounding events.

    Now that may seem a long wait for ‘Crushless’, (kicking for touch actually as there is apparently going to be a last chance pre court conference in November ’12), but how about Paula Bennett’s drawn out privacy case resulting from when she publically outed several dirthy filthy DPB bennies personal details in July 2009… still waiting on the outcome of that one.

    • Treetop 4.1

      When it comes to Collins I find her to be pathetic when it comes to defending her reputation because when it comes to being a minister she has to DECIDE why she is there and that she is there to be effective. Collins needs to walk in the shoes of sensitive claimants (in particular historical cases) and she will get an education.

      1. Some historical sensitive claimants cases go back to before the 1961 Crimes Act.
      2. Often a claimant is not being treated individually e.g. their case is complicated, they have a mental health condition or an addiction.
      3. The small pool of ACC assessors are being managed by ACC and ACC have reinterpreted legislation.
      4. 3.6 % of sensitive claims have been accepted (think in the past year). 60 % of sensitive claims were accepted in 2008.
      5. 40 % less sensitive claim applications (think in the past year) probably because of how hard it is to access the 16 counselling sessions and how disengaged ACC assessors/non medical staff are towards sensitive claimants.

      In 18 months ACC is to go back to Dr Disley who is on a panel which looked at 14 recommendations for sensitive claimants when Smith was the ACC minister. In the meantime I do not think anything will change because Collins doesn’t get it what being sexually violated and raped in childhood can do/does.

      My message to Collins is that cover determination has been reinterpreted for sensitive claimants and every one who puts in a claim to ACC for ANY injury has the right to have their entitlement under the Act and some past Acts.

      I am no fan of Bennett, but I have to give it to her that she has some focus on her portfolio when it comes to children being abused while in CYF care. From July 2010 – June 2011 71 children were abused while in CYF care. It took 7 weeks to collate this information. Bennett knows there needs to be a centralised data base to collate the abuse of children while in CYF care. Currently information is kept at local sites and for there to be a centralised site important information is more likely to be seen. Bennett has also had a focus on compensating historical cases of children being abused while in the care of social welfare.

      When it comes to Collins she is also the justice minister and no doubt some of the historical social welfare cases are because of decisions made by the courts.

      ACC now has to solve the many problems thay have caused due to their stingy penny pinching.
      CYF have to put children at the top of the pyramid and provide the neccessary resources.

  5. You know, I must say I find it quite sad to see The Olympics, which should be a pinnacle for human sports achievement and something all us can be proud of, turned into a fucking branding exercise.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/britain-flooded-with-brand-police-to-protect-sponsors-7945436.html  

  6. captain hook 6

    according to JK Galbraith in ‘American Capitalism’ the landlords rent price is adventitious and a result of the other imbalanced forces in the economy.
    The real problem and it is going to get worse as the days go on is jobs and income but while this government is busy screwing everything as far down as possible there is not much hope of the labourer being worth his hire and receiving his/her due.

  7. John Connor 7

    Yes: master use-more and use-less ness.

    DEMOTIC

    hmmmm. much to learn master!

  8. John Connor 8

    rarely look back. did today.

    versiform another interesting word

    more?

    • Te Reo Putake 8.1

      We’re told that the brown acid is not specifically too good. NO RAIN, NO RAIN!

  9. John Connor 9

    not “mushies”. sensitive regretably
    -adrenaline
    -serotonin
    -dopamine etc

    mastering self

    In-valid

    reparenting self. urrgh!
    self-doubt

    eclectic thinking comes,goes

    “John”-watches
    then
    Elijah

    apprentice
    not
    Master

    in “past” TS like other papers folded away and rarely caught up with
    mastering Time

    happy to share

    RIGHT cannot adopt (pun). strategies mutually exclusive, hence game playing down

    only just came to “blogosphere” ; some people TOLD me i was “not real”
    hmmm

    if fearfull comments intended to be “helpful”
    long way from my reich analogy beginnings.hee

  10. John Connor 10

    Master died,teachings live on

  11. John Connor 11

    understanding
    Master/puppet
    master Puppet

    light

  12. John Connor 12

    ahh
    man/Muppet? though not a concordes follower

  13. John Connor 13

    Parley-a-ment Live
    Live to parleyment
    hmmm
    hammer the tories
    “tall peg hammered down”

  14. John Connor 14

    Global pathos superceded by Individual pathos then weak bathos
    clowns

  15. John Connor 15

    “All the time the guard was looking at her,
    first through a telescope,
    then through a microscope,
    and then through an opera glass.
    At last he said, ‘You’re travelling the wrong way,’
    and shut up the window…..

    -Carroll

  16. John Connor 16

    supporting (N)ational in “droves”:sheep

  17. John Connor 17

    Hot! very hot
    (very ‘eavy, very ‘umble)
    (J-A.G)

  18. John Connor 18

    brownlee; Fred
    dinosaur plodding around swamp….(quarry)

  19. John Connor 19

    will be master/slave
    in or out

    people “outside box”
    look over wall

  20. Now watch this cunning Key. He has opened up debate on water rights,
    The red necks are back in force.Will he call an early election then fight it on ownership of water for Maori.I would not be surprised . Unfortunatly race issues gets the red neck Tories out in force. I hope im wrong ,but Key is trying o back out of the asset sales at this moment.

  21. Treetop 21

    Did anyone see Bryan Bruce last night re investigating the mid June 1970 Crewe murders?

    Throughout the programme it dawned on me how much transparency the police lack toward Rochelle Crewe because she may never be able to even read the police file. I feel that if this is what Rochelle wants, Rochelle should have it, and if she choses to have it independently scrutinised this should also be allowed. Possibly there are people out there who will not talk to the cops (because of their track record with the Crewe case) but they would talk to someone like Bruce and were he to see the entire police file, you never know what oxygen could turn up.

    Bruce is so right when it comes to every police commissioner in the last 40 years not being transparent. What Meurant had to say about Walton, my ears pricked up. I also have something to say about Walton re a 1979 CIB police inquisition. Cover up, after cover up, after cover up …

    I wonder where all the police files are/go which the police do not want interested parties to see?

  22. John Connor 22

    Prasad effective (revolutionary name)

    when TORY individualist found maggie barry familiar
    now
    see camera seeking

    TAF?
    50/50% numerically-cooperative

    66% by solids weight production ie large and fat
    (it is a human number)

    Look at child abuse, emotional and psychological, personally used canadian RED CROSS
    lists sequelae etc

    mastering self but not master parent
    yet…

    id (want) to be mean about DoC minister but
    who knows…

    DEFLATION?DEFLATION?DEFLATION?deFLATION?deflation?

    English acknow. further drops in CPI to come….

    Frank and earnest; importance of being earnest
    (insert platitude)

    Master enquiry/slave data

    measure men t

    sadness not pain
    sadness-sadness
    weep
    water
    washes

    objective not objective
    perspective

    telegram float
    on water

    pilgrimage-way
    prodigal-way

    master planning/slave manager
    (not harm:many managers)lol

    repair or rebuild
    win-win
    machine not mind

    pen sword

    heres a word

    INSANITIZATION

    Aspire?
    specialization mediocre shard
    ala Lacan

    Look
    not agenda

    mana
    give

    way

    build a way, people will come

    a-muse@qualityoflife.hawkesbay.nz

    taught to BUY stuff from machine slot machine at time/s

    be wary “little victorians”-self-seeking bias
    prophet necessary

    SOCIAL ARCHAEOLOGIST

    social archaeologist
    Master of tomb

    machine look in
    Being look out

    Debt being paid forward F.

    BIG FAT LIES; plenty of literature to consider on FRUCTOSE and some VEGETABLE FATS

    Vygotsky

    research and development; Look a-round be-fore a-long (alon(e)g Time

    be-haviour Way in to values
    behaviour-emotion-memory
    loop

    harley-davidson moment;get not get?
    (out from under willie now)lol

    homage
    age
    dying(regret)

    opinion;
    “we relied on books for centuries, no one seemed to mind that”.
    -education consultant (R) perspective

    opinion; rely on small books for centuries more

    centuries long enough? not e-nough read yet
    yet…

    machine transmits Dominant culture
    “boom box” ending
    wind beginning

    Behind Great man-great women

    attachment (ala Bowlby thru life)

    people

    UNDERSTAND

    People

    “put aside”
    shelter-warmth-food

    All Roads Lead to China

    Alter-bot Teaching

    • bad12 22.1

      Pssst John i have stopped reading them, having to fast forward through multiples of them though is becoming a little annoying…

  23. Gareth 23

    Phill U by another name? Or hot air rushing to fill a vacuum

    • Draco T Bastard 24.1

      Mr Singh says the woman told him she had a warrant but would not show it to him.

      Well then, you tell them to fuck off and don’t let them into the house.

      • Anne 24.1.1

        Agreed, but Mr Singh and his Fijian colleagues were probably too polite and frightened to do that. Wonder who they really were?

  24. deuto 26

    Just clicked onto Parliament TV to see what was happening there and caught Asenati Lole-Taylor, NZF’s Pacifica woman MP, speaking against the Social Security (Youth Support and Work Focus) Amendment Bill which is in its Committee stages in the House. And – wow; I was pretty impressed as IMO opinion she is someone to watch in terms of her slugging it to them and representing the Pacifica situation here in NZ.

  25. gobsmacked 27

    So the Key-Maori Party meeting has begun, at 9 pm.

    All smiles by midnight? Anyone want to pick the language for ‘Statement Bingo’?

    Something like …

    Key to acknowledge “need for improved communication between partners”, pledges “respect for mana of Turia and Sharples”, pays tribute to “their valued contribution”, yada yadda.

    Turia and Sharples reaffirm support for “the judicial process”, and “stable government”. More yadda.

    Come on, Pita, Tariana … surprise us.

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    Exports to China have fallen by 27 per cent over the last 12 months - showing that the looming economic slowdown should have been expected by the Government, says Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark. “The Chinese economic slowdown should… ...
    3 days ago
  • National should support all families for 26 weeks
    Families with multiple babies, and those born prematurely or with disabilities, are the winners from moves to extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks but the Government must give all babies the same head start in life, Labour’s spokesperson for… ...
    3 days ago
  • National’s health and safety shambles puts school camps at risk
    Reports that schools are considering scrapping student camps and tearing out playgrounds highlights just how badly National has managed its health and safety reforms, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Schools have been left completely in the dark about the… ...
    3 days ago
  • National’s asset stripping agenda hits schools
    National’s fire-sale of school houses and land is short-sighted, mean-spirited, and will have huge unintended consequences that we will pay for in years to come, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. Documents obtained by Labour show the Ministry of Education… ...
    3 days ago
  • Takahe massacre supposed to get all New Zealanders involved in conservation
    The Minister’s claim that a  botched cull of one of New Zealand’s rarest birds was a way of getting all New Zealanders involved in conservation is offensive and ludicrous, Labour’s conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson says.  “An email from Minister Maggie… ...
    4 days ago
  • Serco circus rolls on with revelations of fight club practice
    Further revelations that a Serco prison guard was coaching inmates on fight club techniques confirms a fully independent inquiry needs to take place, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The Minister’s statement today that a guard was coaching sparring techniques… ...
    4 days ago
  • Government targets put ahead of students’ education
    The Government must urgently reassess the way it sets NCEA targets after a new report found they are forcing schools to “credit farm” and are undermining the qualification, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “A PPTA report released today says… ...
    4 days ago
  • ER patients in corridors as health cuts bite
    Patients are being forced to wait for hours on beds in corridors as cash strapped hospitals struggle to keep up with budget cuts, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “People coming to the emergency room and being forced to wait… ...
    4 days ago
  • Not too late to fix Health and Safety for New Zealand’s workers
    The Government and its minor party supporters are showing an arrogant disregard for workers’ lives by not agreeing to a cross-party solution to the botched Health and Safety bill, Opposition leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday I wrote to the Prime… ...
    4 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Council of Infrastructure Development
    Tēnā Kotou Katoa. Thank you so much for having me along to speak today. Can I begin by acknowledging John Rae, the President, and Stephen Selwood, the chief executive of the Council for Infrastructure Development. ...
    5 days ago
  • Reserve Bank points finger at Govt inaction
    In scathing criticism of the Government’s inaction, the Reserve Bank says Auckland housing supply is growing nowhere near fast enough to make a dent the housing shortage, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Reserve Bank deputy governor Grant Spencer today… ...
    5 days ago
  • Chickens come home to roost on climate change
    The Government’s gutting of the Emissions Trading Scheme has caused foresters to leave and emissions to rise, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods. “The release of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Facts and Figures Report for 2014 on the ETS… ...
    5 days ago
  • Website adds to long list of big spends at MBIE
    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s $560,000 outlay on its new website is further evidence of excessive spending by Steven Joyce on his pet project super ministry, Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says.  “Hot on the heels of… ...
    5 days ago
  • Brownlee warned over EQC repairs but ignored them
    Gerry Brownlee was warned that EQC’s underfloor repairs weren’t being done properly by industry experts, the cross party working group and in public but he arrogantly ignored them all, says Labour’s Earthquake Commission spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove.  “Today’s apology and commitment… ...
    5 days ago
  • Serco wants in on state house sell off
    The Government must keep scandal plagued outsourcing company Serco away from our state housing after their disastrous record running Mt Eden prison, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Today it has emerged that at the same time Serco was under… ...
    7 days ago
  • Come clean on Pasifika education centre
    Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iinga needs to come clean and tell the Pasifika communities if he’s working to save the Pasifika Education Centre or shut it down, Labour’s Pasifika spokesperson Su’a William Sio says.  “I’m gutted the Pasifika Education Centre funding… ...
    1 week ago
  • Time for NZTA to work on alternatives to flyover
    The High Court decision rejecting the New Zealand Transport Agency’s attempts to build the Basin Reserve flyover must now mean that NZTA finally works with the community on other options for transport solutions in Wellington, Grant Robertson and Annette King… ...
    1 week ago
  • Shiny new system leads to record truancy
    Record high truancy rates shows the Government’s much-vaunted new attendance system is an abysmal failure, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Data released today shows truancy rates have spiked more than 15 per cent in 2014 and are now at… ...
    1 week ago
  • Woodhouse wrong about quarries
      The Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Michael Woodhouse was wrong yesterday when he said limestone quarries were covered by the farcical Health and Safety legislation, says Labour’s Associate Labour spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “He said he ‘understood’ limestone quarries… ...
    1 week ago
  • Taxpayers money spent on culling one of our rarest birds
    It beggars belief that four endangered takahe were killed by incompetent cullers contracted to the Department of Conservation and the Minister must explain this wanton destruction, says Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It must not be forgotten that there are only… ...
    1 week ago
  • Housing NZ must immediately move family
    Housing New Zealand must immediately move a Glen Innes family whose son contracted serious and potentially fatal health problems from the appalling condition of their state house, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Te Ao Marama Wensor and community workers… ...
    1 week ago
  • No understanding of the value of overseas investment
     The Government has now admitted it has absolutely no idea of the actual value of foreign investment in New Zealand, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “It is crucial that the Government starts to understand just what this overseas… ...
    1 week ago
  • Another bridges bribe from Simon Bridges
    Simon Bridges is embroiled in another bridges-for-votes controversy after admitting funding for a replacement bridge in Queenstown is “very much about… the 2017 election”, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Transport Minister is today reported as telling Queenstown locals… ...
    1 week ago
  • Saudi tender process reeks of SkyCity approach
    The tender process for the $6m investment in a Saudi sheep farm reeks like the SkyCity convention centre deal and once again contravenes the government’s own procurement rules, says Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson David Parker. “The $6m contract… ...
    1 week ago
  • Maori Party should stand up for workers
    The Government’s proposed Health and Safety Reform Bill does not go far enough to protect those in specific industries with the highest rates of workplace deaths, says Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “We are told that Maori workers are more… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister must explain budget blowout
    Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell must explain a budget blow out at Te Puni Kokiri, after the organisation spent more than 2.5 million dollars over their budget for contractors, says Labour’s Associate Māori Development spokesperson Peeni Henare.  “For the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Successful effort to raise the issue of GE trees in proposed standard
    Many thousands of people submitted on the proposed National Environmental Standard –  Plantation Forestry (NES-PF).  A vast majority of the public submissions were particularly focussed on the NES having included GE trees in its mandate. People want these provisions removed,… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Fair Share Friday – Thoughts and Reflections
    As part of our Fair Share  campaign, Green MPs have been doing a series of visits to community groups across the country to have conversations about inequality in New Zealand and what communities are experiencing on the ground. I visited… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Crucial Auditor General investigation welcomed
    The Auditor General’s decision to investigate the Saudi sheep scandal is important, necessary and welcome, Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David Parker says. “The independent functions of the Auditor General are a cornerstone of the New Zealand system of… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • KiwiSaver sign-ups continue to fall
    New KiwiSaver sign-ups in July were 45 per cent below the monthly average, despite John Key saying axing the kickstart “will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver”, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Contact bows to pressure
    Contact Energy’s decision to cut its pre-pay rates to be in line with its customers who pay monthly is good news and the company deserves credit for responding so quickly, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson David Shearer.  “Two months ago… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • I’m pushing for a ‘fair go’ for solar
    My Fair Go For Solar Bill was pulled from the Members’ Ballot last week and is set for a vote in Parliament. In this blog post I explain some of the background to the bill and how it aims to… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Key must explain why Health and Safety Bill pulled
    John Key must explain why his Government is delaying the Health and Safety Bill when Pike River families have travelled to Wellington specifically to register their opposition, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday afternoon John Key suggested the bill may… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Diving for sustainable scallops
    Last week, there were calls for scallop dredging to be banned in the Marlborough Sounds, following scientific report saying that 70% of the Sounds had been lost from dredging, trawling, and sedimentation from forestry. At the same time we see… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Backdown whiff in state house leasing option
    Bill English’s admission that the Government is looking at leasing large numbers of state houses to non-government providers has the whiff of a backdown, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “This is an acknowledgement by Bill English that he has… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing crisis downgrade threatening banking sector
    The out of control Auckland housing market is now threatening the banking sector, with Standard and Poor’s downgrading the credit rating of our banks out of fear of the bubble bursting, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Today we have… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Good money after bad for failed experiment
    The National government are throwing good money after bad with their decision to pump even more funding into their failed charter school experiment, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.  “There are already major problems with several of the first charter… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National borrows Labour’s idea on urban development
    Labour's Associate Environment spokesperson Phil Twyford says he welcomes the Government's adoption of Labour's policy for a National Policy Statement on urban development, and has called on the Government to take up Labour's offer to work together on these issues.… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Toothless OIO never refused a single farmland sale
    The Overseas Investment Office has approved more than 290 consents from foreign investors to buy sensitive land in New Zealand, but has not turned down a single application says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash  “The Minister of Land information,… ...
    2 weeks ago

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