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Open mike 19/05/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 19th, 2012 - 144 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…

144 comments on “Open mike 19/05/2012”

  1. Carol 1

    So, one of Act’s big funders wants Act to follow Brash’s Orewa speech model, of “equal” treatment for Maori and Pakeha.

    But behind this egalitarian argument, is a fundamental dislike of Maori culture, and a lac k understanding of the inequalities that result in a high proportion of Maori being poor, unemployed, and without hope:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10806938

    The biggest donor to the Act Party says he gave the money to Don Brash and John Banks so they could stop special treatment for Maori who were “either in jail or on welfare”.
    […]
    The campaign came after the Rugby World Cup, which showcased Maori in a way Mr Crimp opposed.

    “It was an embarrassment at the Rugby World Cup, [Maori] coming to shore in canoes, with hardly any clothes on, waving spears and poking their tongues out, all painted up.”

    He said it was intended as a welcome but would have terrified visitors.

    “Every opportunity the Maoris get they have to do this war dance, whether it is for a funeral or something happy or a wedding. They feel they have to take all their clothes off, stick tongues out and wave spears. That’s not New Zealand.”

    He said New Zealand was poorer because of Maori claims, welfare, language revival, television and crime.

    “The Maori language, that is the biggest waste of money that New Zealand has ever spent on anything … $500 million a year to promote the Maori language.

    “It’s making New Zealand poorer by paying the Maori out the welfare and the language.”

    That’s “free speech” for you…. and for that I am grateful…. it enables some people to demonstrate the poverty, and sometimes nastiness, of their beliefs.

    • Hateatea 1.1

      Mr Crimp is not a nice man as many could attest to. This story in today’s Southland Times is but one of hundreds of similar tales I have heard over the past 45 years or so. He is a wealthy bully.
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/news/6950115/Quake-report-too-expensive#share
       

      • Carol 1.1.1

        Thanks. So in contrast to Crimp’s one law for all Pakeha and Maori, he reckons there’s one law (or set of rules) for everyone else, but he can do what he likes.

        • Hateatea 1.1.1.1

          he has acted that way for as long as I have known of him  (45 plus years). Being at death’s door has done absolutely nothing to sweeten his nature except his generosity to the local SPCA (I have to be fair)

        • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.2

          That does seem to be normal for rich pricks.

    • Carol 1.2

      Sorry, didn’t end the quote at the right point. in my7.16am comment.

      The extract from the article ends here;

      “The Maori language, that is the biggest waste of money that New Zealand has ever spent on anything … $500 million a year to promote the Maori language.

      “It’s making New Zealand poorer by paying the Maori out the welfare and the language.”

      This last sentence is mine :
      That’s “free speech” for you…. and for that I am grateful…. it enables some people to demonstrate the poverty, and sometimes nastiness, of their beliefs.

    • Foreign Waka 1.3

      Sorry to burst your bubble, I am all for Culture but there is an enormous waste going on just to keep the Nats in Government. Lots of moneys being spent in all the wrong places. It is disgusting – I repeat: DISGUSTING – that the people in Christchurch have to wait to get a roof over their head while PUBLIC money is being spent on items with NO PRIORITY at this time. i.e.paying Gangs on the belief that they may just change their behavior is unbelievable. No wonder that NZ is being taken to the cleaners, no wonder.

      • Chris 1.3.1

        While I don’t think anywhere near enough is being done in Christchurch I also don’t think funding for every other programme should be stopped because of Christchurch.

        One thing the Government is doing in Christchurch is spending a lot of money they’re just not doing it in ways that actually help Christchurch aside from consultants in Christchurch.

        • Foreign Waka 1.3.1.1

          Sorry Chris, I disagree. If there is only so much money in the public purse (taxpayer money) than spending has to be prioritized. Infrastructure is part of public spending and for people to not have basics of clean water and sanitation vs spending on projects currently not on the top of the list is simply irresponsible. There is no other way of saying this: political correctness will not elevate poverty, it just polarizes the parties trying to get “their” project paid for. I am absolutely certain that there is enough money in the Maori Trusts to fund these projects like I mentioned earlier.

          • Chris 1.3.1.1.1

            Why should Maori Trusts have to pay for it though Gangs are not solely a Maori problem.

            You missed my point though that the problem in Christchurch is not that there isn’t enough money being spent down there because a heap is being spent but it is the way it is being spent that is the problem. That won’t be fixed by cutting every programme that someone determines as non-priority.

          • hateatea 1.3.1.1.2

            Clean water and sanitation are a City Council responsibility.

            As for Maori Trusts funding gang projects – it would have to be consistent with their trust deeds and, in most cases, all the gang members would have to whakapapa to that particular trust to qualify. In my experience most trusts only give funding for high school and tertiary education

            • Foreign Waka 1.3.1.1.2.1

              Absolutely, funding of any gang projects are not necessary race related. However, Maori are at the moment the only one getting PUBLIC funding. This I feel is currently completely out of tough with the real needs of any community.

              • Adele

                Foreign Boat

                For a relatively recent immigrant you sure know a lot about what Māori get.

                Māori are not the only ones that receive government funding. Any funding specifically targeting Māori must also incorporate non-Māori into the mix (anyone can apply under Whānau Ora).

                Public funding was established on the back of Māori largesse – what Māori gave up in order for the public to reside peaceably in this country (land, waterways, status, the capacity to be self-sufficient and autonomous etc)..

                I recommend you study more what Māori have lost and then compare it to what we have gained before making judgement on how beneficient the public has / is being towards tāngata whenua.

                Another gripe that is frequently thrown at Māori by Pākehā is that we seek to separate (apartheid) however what you are advocating is exactly that – Māori fund Māori issues, although we are also taxpayers, business people, earners. Are you suggesting that whatever taxes we pay into the government coffers also be directed towards our own interests. I could live with that especially when the Maori economy is supposedly worth an estimated $37 billion.

              • Hateatea

                Sorry, foreign waka, I completely missed this on Saturday but evidence please:
                What gangs are being publicly funded? Evidence that all members of the gang are Māori (should any gang prove to be publicly funded)
                I get more than a little annoyed that such divisive and unsubstantiated canards keep being uttered as if they are true with no evidence to back them up. A lie, no matter how often repeated (or by whom) remains a lie

          • Descendant Of Smith 1.3.1.1.3

            “I am absolutely certain that there is enough money in the Maori Trusts to fund these projects like I mentioned earlier.”

            I’m absolutely certain that there is much much more money in Pakeha trusts to pay for the things they (Pakeha) need than there is an any Maori trusts.

            We know from media reports that Pakeha use these trusts to access much state assistance, to deprive women of their matrimonial property, to close down companies and still keep the money they have transferred out of it, to get the state to pay for their residential care when they are elderly and so on.

            You’re a bit like those I was at school with who bitched about the (few) Maori kids on scholarships to go to boarding school. I was also a scholarship kid paid for by the state, they were paid for by iwi scholarships – you know their own money.

            No student or parent did I ever hear whinge about my scholarship – the constant five year refrain about “these Maori” kids being funded by the taxpayer was just another step in demonstrating the irrational, uneducated premise that many Pakeha have about Maori – most pakeha of whom would never have stepped on a marae in their lives.

            Often this rhetoric influences foreigners who come here as does the media portrayal – the fact that foreigners get sucked into this only ever reminds me of Muldoon’s statement about raising the IQ of both countries. It just that on this occasion we are on the receiving end.

            • Foreign Waka 1.3.1.1.3.1

              To Adele and Descendent of Smith
              Firstly, you both assume to know what I know, how I live and what my background is. You are wrong on all accounts by the way. However, in regard to by comments- what I am saying is that 2 wrongs do not make one right. Yes, Maori got the colonial treatment albeit to a somewhat lesser extent (not an excuse!) than in other countries. However, NZ has come a long way to pay reparation and a far as I can see Maoris biggest hurdle these days is not so much the payouts themselves but the lack of the trickling down from the Trusts and Elites (this is so familiar)- Oh I can hear the drums already……
              This defensive attitude is what truly stays in the way of further development and is politically used and EVERYBODY outside this can see it. Not the ones actually involved, of cause not – what else is new.
              Anyway, my comment was directed at Government spending per see as I feel that any money that is collected by law abiding taxpaying people should be used wisely and appropriately. This means that this country needs to first cover the basics for EVERYBODY before it can decide on any other use of moneys. You are talking about the crown when referring to any moneys that Maori claim and seem to forget that it is in fact your neighbor with the 2.5 kids and a mortgage, worry to hold a job if at all having one, getting by on minimum wages who is now asked to pay. So maybe you have to ask the Queen?
              As for the study of Maori, yes I have done some, their history, the genealogy and I was on a marae, meetings etc. Possibly more than your average NZlander. But there you go, this is not about race, this is about right or wrong.

              • Descendant Of Smith

                Hmmm the closest I came to mentioning you was you remind me of.

                It’s a bit of an extrapolation to take that to me suggesting what you think and know.

                Disagreement and a differing view isn’t a personal attack.

              • Adele

                Foreign Boat,

                I assume things about you based on your comments and it appears to me, as a person with extensive knowledge and lived experience of Te Ao Māori, that your interactions with Māori history have done you little favour as your ignorance is still woefully apparent, and whoopee that you have been on Marae. The days of feting non-Māori for learning about tāngata whenua are well and truly over.

                You are suggesting that Māori Trusts should fund Māori social (and presumably health services) because the country cannot afford to do so under the present recessionary climate. Your suggestion does in fact have precedence in history. The introduction into this country of the old age pension exemplifies how Māori were treated differently as citizens.

                When the old age pension was introduced in 1908, Registrars were instructed to make Māori access to the pension as difficult as possible. All Māori claims for the pension had to be filtered through the Native Land Court and placed before a magistrate, effectively slowing the process.

                Other mechanisms used to deny Māori equal treatment included removing a swathe of Māori names from the pension rolls. For those Māori that could collect a pension their entitlements were reduced to two-thirds of the amount paid to Pākehā. From 1925 the maximum rate payable to Māori was £32.6s per annum or 71% of the maximum of £45.10s. In 1927, many Māori pensions were below £20, less than half the rate paid to Pākehā.

                Koroua and Kuia were literally been starved through this inequitable treatment. The extreme poverty of Māori communities became the rationale for different treatment. Pākehā saw Māori poverty as a sign of lower expectation rather than greater need and by the 1920s living in a pa became a reason to disbar Māori from full pension entitlement. Other types of welfare benefits followed a similar discriminatory pattern. Such treatment continued well into the 1940s.

                Your type of thinking is a rehash of the colonial mindset and is discriminatory.

                • Foreign Waka

                  Thank god I learned good manners, I would otherwise get a bit stroppy here. You seem to enlarge the issue ever so much just to further your agenda. Woppee? Well, at least I made an effort. How about you? What have you done so far to learn about the people around you if they are not Maori?
                  As for equal rights to benefits, I belief it these are paid on equal footing. I am not referring to a time some 80 years ago but to the time right now. My comments were specifically to the plight of families and elderly in Christchurch. But with all that politicking that point seem to get lost on you. It is in fact your ignorance that seem to put just yourself into the center and hence no one else counts. Meanwhile, there is hardship due to a major natural event and every cent is needed to get the people back to a reasonable state of affairs. We are not talking about luxuries when providing sanitary facilities and drinking water which are too expensive for any City Council to cover. I belief that in light of this need funding of none urgent items should be suspended – such as benefits to Gangs.
                  As to your assertion of discrimination, I really don’t follow how you get this out of my comments. Because a civilized, democratic society provides for EVERYBODY equally and that means also for the folks in Christchurch.
                  Discrimination is such an easy throw around word these days that it seem to be often just used to put someone else at unease. In response to your assumptions, I am tempted to give you more insight but then again, it wont help the issue as your point of view is set and seemingly in a frame of mind that is not really open to any conversation.

                  • Hateatea

                    The provision of safe drinking water and the provision of sanitation are both core business for territorial and local authorities in New Zealand. That Christchurch, Waimakariri and Selwyn councils have to face an unprecedented bill due to earthquake damage doesn’t change that.
                    Many councils are faced with similar issues post flooding.
                    This in no way makes acceptable that some are still waiting to know what will happen to their properties, and hence, whether or not water and sanitation will be supplied to their property in the future. That is in the hands of CERA and the Minister.
                    There are many who would agree that a lot of the money Government is supposed to be invested in Christchurch is difficult to see at the flaxroots, that again is something that you might want to consider investigating via OIA requests.
                    What that has to do though with diverting money from educational, well health and other social issues, particularly those to ‘Māori’ is unclear to me. What is even more unclear is why my iwi,hapū and whanau trusts should pay for what are government and community initiatives. Our investment strategies are clear: for us, and for the generations to come. That means that we as the members get our ‘dividend’ in ways other than an annual sum in the bank. Our choice, no one elses business, and certainly not to be spent as you or any politician decides. We suffered too much for too long to give away our hard won financial independence. (BTW, if you think that recompense of approximately 1% of the calculated loss is unreasonable, imagine the cost to the country of proper restitution. )
                    Lastly, why should the Queen pay the restitution. The profits made from illegal land purchases and sales didn’t flow to the Queen, it went, as usual, to the bankers, pastoralists and other colonial parasites, not Queen Victoria.
                     

                    • Adele

                      Tēnā koe, Hateatea

                      Ngā mihi nui ki a koe. If I may just flow on from your words.

                      Foreign Boat

                      I have exceptional manners, unless I am confronted by ignorance, especially from someone who should know better. In a discussion on Crimp’s blatant racism you introduce into the Kōrero a back-hander about public money going into all the wrong places (Māori) while the good citizens of Christchurch SUFFER because of inadequate resourcing. Your opinion says that in such dire circumstances, culture (Māori) is expendable and Māori initiatives should have no priority insofar as public spending is concerned. The greater good must prevail. You do not recommend that SPCA funding be curtailed or Creative New Zealand funds be re-directed.

                      You raise the evil spectre of Gangs receiving public funds at the expense of the neighbour with 2.5 kids, and a mortgage while STRUGGLING to hold onto a minimum wage job. For added emotional effect, you ought to have included the little old lady having to eat cat food because some Maori received funding to attend a well catered hui. Crimp would creak with glee at the hyperbole.

                      Apparently, Māori are blind to the excesses being poured into their coffers by the generous but increasingly (and rightly) indignant public. The generosity you speak of obviously includes welfare – but numbers show the largest burden to the welfare state is superannuation – and very few Māori receive the super (32,000 as opposed to 550,000 non-Māori). There is also roughly a ten year difference in life expectancy between Māori and Pākehā.

                      If the generosity includes treaty settlements, Ngai Tahu settlement monies (as an example) equates to roughly $120 for every acre that was stolen, dishonestly acquired, or confiscated. If the generosity includes government spending on targeted social and health services, the health spend (as an example) equates to roughly $90 per Māori head of population in the South Island or 3% of available health funding.

                      I am fairly sure that the gangster incident that provoked your ‘crimpness’ was when a Dunedin based gang received funding under whānau ora for $50,000. However, compare that amount to the $8billion being siphoned off the rest of the country including Māori communities, businesses, workers, and taxpayers to fuel the Christchurch rebuild – whose stunted progress is more about government ineptitude rather than lack of resources.

                      I should mention that Ngai Tahu is currently offering accelerated trade training to Māori to help with the rebuild and that Māori organisations across the country were quick to respond to the aftermath of the earthquakes, Rotorua (as an example) sent a team of 18 doctors and nurses to Christchurch to aid in recovery.

                      If I accuse you of being discriminatory in your viewpoints, to quote koro Crimp “the truth hurts.”

                    • Foreign Waka

                      Kia Ora Hateaea

                      Your comments are such that I will just end this with a short reply:
                      1/ I was not aware that NZ has Tribal Law instead of an all encompassing State Law.
                      2/ There is no excuse of Apartheid politics, neither in social nor any other matter and this goes for all sides.
                      3/ It becomes increasingly obvious that one cannot voice a point of view without being berated in such manner that it seem that no other voice is allowed because of past events.
                      I am of the view that I am treated in this way because I have identified myself as an immigrant and thus I can reassure you, feel discriminated against. Not that I really care, mind you.
                      So, as far as I am concerned I will draw my own conclusion and leave it at that.

    • weka 1.4

      I’m so glad the Herald gave Crimp such a good hearing. The more that NZ sees what is behind ACT the quicker ACT will be gone.
       

      He said the party had to be more direct, although it was not able to position itself as “anti-Maori”.
      Asked if his political views could be labelled racist, he said: “I don’t give a stuff what I’m called. You have to look at the facts and figures. This is the problem with New Zealanders. Most of them dislike the Maoris intensely – I won’t say hate – but they don’t like to say so.”
       

      Would love to know who Crimp spends his time with. And who he does business with in Invercargill.
       
      He goes on to say that there are hardly any Maoris down there, LOL. What a dick.

      • Tigger 1.4.1

        How many of National’s big donors also think this way? Many, I suspect.

      • Sookie 1.4.2

        That interview with the horrible Mr Crimp was so outrageously awful I actually laughed. But sadly, he’s only saying what South Island rednecks are thinking, or saying on talkback/down the pub.

        • weka 1.4.2.1

          I don’t think so Sookie. Even within the redneck communities I think the subset that believe what Crimp does is very small. He is very extreme. He is a white supremacist and what he is saying is basically promoting cultural genocide. He hates Maoris and he thinks that their culture should not exist because it’s not NZ. The rednecks I know might think that Maori shouldn’t get special treatment etc but I don’t often hear the outright white supremacist stuff.

      • Vicky32 1.4.3

        Would love to know who Crimp spends his time with.

        Exactly! Rabid nutmegs, by the looks…

    • Daveosaurus 1.5

      If there were any real journalists in this country, they’d have been asking him probing questions about his business dealings. http://www.business.govt.nz/companies/app/ui/pages/companies/155763/documents How convenient for him that everything is mysteriously “Not Available”.

    • felix 1.6

      So this fuckwit ACToid who hates everything maori (including te reo) owns a business called Tuatara.

      Righto.

      • hateatea 1.6.1

        Exactly! He probably doesn’t realise that tuatara is a Maori word. A surprising number of children to whom I taught Te Reo didn’t realise just how many words had been borrowed into NZ English

        • Vicky32 1.6.1.1

          A surprising number of children to whom I taught Te Reo didn’t realise just how many words had been borrowed into NZ English

          That’s surprising and very sad…

  2. Zorr 2

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBx2Y5HhplI

    The TED talk that TED won’t post… such a shame because it is so very excellent and full of truisms that have been forgotten in our corporate world…

  3. BillODrees 3

    National down 2.5 points to 44.5% and Labour up 1.5 points to 30% in the Roy Morgan Poll.
    Disappointing. They have been on the back foot for months and Labour gains less than the margin of error. We had plenty of opportunities but failed to put the boot (or knife) in. Where is Labour’s “mongrel”? Has Labour changed strategists since the failure of last year? Are the same strategists doing the same things and hoping for a different outcome? WTF!!

    http://www.roymorgan.com/news/polls/2012/4776

    • Carol 3.1

      I’m not keen on Labour’s current strategies. But I take polls with a grain of salt. Long term trends in polls have more value than individual ones. And the 1% difference between National’s loss and Labour’s gain is margin of error stuff.

  4. Lanthanide 4

    More research shows why a completely pessimistic view about oil isn’t warranted:
    http://tech.slashdot.org/story/12/05/18/1538252/diesel-like-engine-could-boost-fuel-economy-by-50

    “Autoparts manufacturer Delphi has developed a diesel-like ignition engine running on gasoline, providing a potential 50 percent efficiency improvement over existing gas-powered engines. Engineers have long sought to run diesel-like engines on gasoline for its higher efficiency and low emissions. Delphi’s engine, using a technique called gasoline-direct-injection compression ignition, could rival the performance of hybrid automobiles at a cheaper cost.”

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      We’ve already hit Peak Oil and it will be years and more probably decades before the new engine is common enough to make a difference.

      • Lanthanide 4.1.1

        Not necessarily. The whole thing about oil-based transportation is that there’s no technology in progress that can substantially increase energy efficiency. Well there’s one right there.

        I’m not suggesting this engine is going to replace the vehicle fleet in any significant way. More that existing vehicles will simply be scrapped, we’ll have 1/20th the number of cars on the road as we do now, but with this particular type of engine we might end up with 1/10th instead.

        Also things like trucks and construction vehicles are much more vital to the industrial economy than private personal transport, so efficiencies of these types will help to keep those vehicles running.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.1

          Not necessarily. The whole thing about oil-based transportation is that there’s no technology in progress that can substantially increase energy efficiency. Well there’s one right there.

          No, the problem is that there’s no energy source available to replace oil. That one will extend petrol vehicles for a time if it actually works as envisaged (I think it probably will) and it get widely used but to get that will require the government to remove older engines from the road.

          I’ve never been as pessimistic as RA and AFKTT. I think industrial society will continue but that it will have to shrink to fit into the energy constrained future. This tech will help there and agree that trucks are more important than cars, trains are also more important than trucks.

          There’s a lot that needs planning for and leaving it to the market won’t work. Actually, leaving it to the market invariably leads to collapse.

      • mike e 4.1.2

        DTB a product called graphene could make electric motors lighter and more efficient.
        The infernal combustion motor will have its day sooner than later!

  5. Stephen Doyle 5

    Look here
    http://dimpost.wordpress.com/tracking-poll/
    Labour is consistently on the up since late last year. When was Shearer elected again?

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Its something, but showing that Labour is back in the same spot as Aug 2011 is neither here nor there, given that National has hit multiple scandals so far this year.

    • muzza 5.2

      It would not matter if Labour were leading a government today, the outcomes are still going to be the same, the journey there a little different.

      Time for people to accept responsibility, and stop looking to a failed system to save them!

      • John72 5.2.1

        Muzza, yet again, I agree. Economy wise, NZ is just a couple of islands off the coast of Australia.
        Is the media saying any more about the French politicans taking a 30% pay cut?

      • Bill 5.2.2

        I agree with you there muzza. But there’s only one view you get when you are shackled to debt and time worn habits that compel you to persist in chasing personal material gain (if only to pay the mortgage and other debts or tread water) : the wall you are shackled to.

  6. As one trader confirms after a visit to Europe the collapse much worse than the MSM let’s on. How much? Border controls are back in place!

  7. Sookie 8

    A friend in the energy management profession told me something interesting in the pub last night. The hydro lakes are very low this year, so low that in a non-asset sales year they would be issuing warnings to the public. The companies up for sale are deliberately not saying anything about the problem as that would affect their share price, no doubt because the government ordered them to shut the hell up. Certainly the lakes looked very low when I was up in the Mackenzie a couple of weeks ago. Oh for some media coverage, but of course it will be ignored as usual by this useless bunch of Nat lickspittles we’re stuck with.

    • Lanthanide 8.1

      There was something on Checkpoint (5-7pm National Radio weeknight news) about this, although they didn’t say it was because of the asset sales. I can’t remember everything, but the guy was saying that the new structure of the industry in NZ encourages thermal energy providers to produce power whereas in the past they didn’t have as much incentive. They mentioned the new law that says if the power companies are forced to implement a rationing scheme then they must actually pay customers money as compensation – a very strong market force to do everything possible to avoid that situation.

  8. Sanctuary 9

    Russell Brown has written a brilliantly funny satircal piece over at Public Address where he ruthlessly parodies the faddish foodism of a completely out of touch and pampered New Zealand middle class.
    The great thing is the deadpan way in which the whole post appears to be completely serious.

    • Eddie 9.1

      lols.

      russell brown to me epitomises why the liberal elite in this country has consistently lost to the business elite.

      oh, they have values, but navel-gazing and self-indulgence are much more fun than fighting for those values.

    • Lanthanide 9.2

      Check the comments.

    • weka 9.3

      What makes you think it is satirical?

    • RedLogix 9.4

      After a lifetime of avoiding all food-fads like the plague I finally fell for this one in Feb this year.

      Since then I’ve lost 12 kg and have never enjoyed my food more in my life. And I’m fit again, 8-10 hr tramping days are easy, and I can do real forehand chin-ups again. This at an age when our grandparents were considered ‘old’. This is nothing like usual yo-yo ‘diet’ either… I’m eating as much as I need to feel satisfied and the flab keeps melting off.

      And I’m busy DOING things in my life again, doing a new qualification, contemplating a new building project, leading a community project, tackling a major new project at work… and enjoying it.

      It’s also why I haven’t had the time for The Standard so much recently…I still drop in daily to read the threads, but I’ve got the energy now to live life the way I believe in; as compared to just sitting around typing about it.

      Ultimately food IS political, and my own personal experience convinces me of this. Because there is no doubt in my mind that the standard dietary ‘food pyramid’ serves no-one other than the food industry conglomerates while harming us ordinary people who eat it.

      Oh and our grocery bill is around 2/3rds of what it was last year.

      • weka 9.4.1

        That’s great RL. The Paleo diets are pretty interesting. Don’t work for everyone one, but many people seem to get alot of benefit, and there is sound science and evidence to back it up. It’d be good to see the political blogosphere get more nutritionally literate.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      Good article.

      • Stephen Doyle 10.1.1

        If the NZ electorate wanted a marxist govt, the closet part we’ve got in the public eye being the Mana Party, wouldn’t their polling be higher?

        • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.1

          I don’t think Mana is anything close to being a Marxist party.

          That said, WTF has that got to do with the article? And, perhaps, the electorate doesn’t show favour for Marx due to the spin and BS that has been propagated about over the last century which, as the article shows, was wrong.

          On that note, do you have anything to say about what the article highlights, specifically, the failure of capitalism as predicted by Marx?

          • mike e 10.1.1.1.1

            dtb even main stream economists are saying neoliberalism doesn’t work in post industrial countries now.

            • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.1.1.1

              It’s not just neo-liberalism but capitalism as a whole – it quite simply doesn’t work.

    • kiwi_prometheus 10.2

      Dialectical Materialism, though a fascinating bit of the history of philosophy, is a Fail.

      Reminds of a John Ralston Saul quip about Marxism in a nutshell being economic determinism and the belief society is a wide open battle field – therefore the only practicing Marxists these days are the neo cons and the big corporate executives.

  9. Rosie 11

    Cognitive dissonance news of the day. Count the many ways you can see how amazingly wrong Tracy Watkins is

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/6950260/Kiwis-are-tolerating-moderate-austerity

    Sycophants underpants anyone?

  10. just saying 12

    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/owen-jones-hatred-of-those-on-benefits-is-dangerously-out-of-control-7763793.html

    A story from The Independent about the effects of the international hate campaign against beneficiaries. Excerpt below.

    I was talking with a friend in Auckland the other night who was in tears about being vilified for being a beneficiary.

    Earlier this year, a Sunday Times article featured the headline “End the something for nothing culture”. Below was a picture of the Gallagher family from the comedy-drama Shameless, as though these fictional caricatures were real life. This one-time paper of record quoted a Whitehall official on benefit recipients: “If we want them to tap dance, then they will tap dance.” Rod Liddle – who dresses up the boorish rants of a thick pub bore as journalism – claimed that his new year’s resolution “was to become disabled”, perhaps with a “newly invented” illness like fibromyalgia, so he could claim benefits. As the economic catastrophe that began four years ago led to a national jobs’ crisis – there are now over six million people looking for full-time work – the “scrounger'”caricature perversely has become more and more popular.

    It is tempting to ignore the ramblings of glorified internet trolls like Liddle, but their projected ignorance has consequences. Six of the biggest disability charities have warned that the campaign of demonisation – by both journalists and politicians – has led to a surge in abuse towards people with disabilities. According to Scope, two-thirds reported abuse in September last year, up from 41 per cent just four months earlier.

    • Olwyn 12.1

      What an utter horror! The Western World is heading in a direction that is just terrifying. We are becoming like swamp birds with cell phones, and with the capacity to do much greater damage.

    • RedLogix 12.2

      Of course it’s a horror Olwyn. And so many people love to wallow in it nowadays.

      It will get worse because our owners want it to get worse. They want us divided and fighting over the scraps they deign to let trickle our way. The one thing they cannot afford it for us ordinary people realise what has happened and to turn our attention on those who perpetrated it.

      • Olwyn 12.2.1

        Yes. That poor family is portrayed as a drain on society, the person who killed their youngest kids is now a mass murderer, while David Cameron and that shock jock woman make themselves another G & T, and think about how they can make use of this tragedy, if they think about it at all. We often say we must wake up before it’s too late – for the Philpotts and many others it is already too late.

    • Vicky32 12.3

      A story from The Independent about the effects of the international hate campaign against beneficiaries.

      My giddy aunt! That’s horrific…

  11. joe90 13

    The only thing going to plan in the latest dotcom scam seems to be the tax dodge.

    The big pop in Facebook Inc. shares never came.

    Buyers did not rush into the market to snap up shares of the social networker. And the big Wall Street banks that brought Facebook public scrambled to prevent the stock from collapsing into declines.

    The underwriters averted a potential debacle by scooping up shares of the company during the Nasdaq debut. This propped up the stock, keeping it above the $38 offering price through most of the day.

    • kiwi_prometheus 13.1

      There’s been a few observations in the last 2 years about another dot.com bubble. Here’s the proof I guess.

    • kiwi_prometheus 13.2

      Regarding bullying brought up in the context of millionaire Act Party donor, actually being a bully seems to be a central part of Maori behaviour.

      I remember three Maori co workers. One told me about how she went to school with black eyes from the step father, but “at least it made me FUCKIN tough!”. Oh yeah she was tough as nails for sure, and had one HUGE anger management problem.

      Another one told me his father had all kinds of belts, including automotive lol, and he would put the kids names on them so they knew what he would thrash them with.

      The 3rd one had a lesbian lover and used fake names to open bank accounts etc. She would demand we call her one name then a month later demand we call her another. When she answered to her lesbian lover over the phone, she would go all meek and pathetic, squeaking “Yes maam… yes maam…yes maam”.

      I told them I can remember clearly the times I got smacked as a kid because it only happened twice.
      They just stared at me speechless.

      • just saying 13.2.1

        Another one told me his father had all kinds of belts, including automotive lol, and he would put the kids names on them so they knew what he would thrash them with.

        lol? You must be very proud of the superior human being you have shaped yourself into being KP

        And btw, anecdotes from a few acquaintances, even when true, do not consitiute proof of anything about a wider group.

        • kiwi_prometheus 13.2.1.1

          “lol?”

          Ever heard of the phrase “If I didn’t laugh I’d cry”.

          Drop the self righteous attitude js.

          “btw, anecdotes from a few acquaintances, even when true, do not consitiute proof of anything about a wider group.”

          I could keep going all day with the anecdotes dude. How about one of the “bros” who rocks on up to the family holiday get together with his girlfriend – he keeps her in the car THE WHOLE WEEKEND, she was only allowed out a couple of times to use the bathroom.

          Plus all the Maori social/economic stats.

          Guess you think “Once Were Warriors” is only fiction and in no way reflects on Maori. That would be RACIST!

          • weka 13.2.1.1.1

            Yeah, and white people have no domestic violence or anger problems.

            • kiwi_prometheus 13.2.1.1.1.1

              Not on the level of Maori, I know that from what I have seen and what is in the stats.

              • weka

                “Not on the level of Maori, I know that from what I have seen and what is in the stats.”
                 
                So what is the statistical difference between Maori and Pakeha? Where is the research that proves that Maori are better at bullying than non-Maori?

          • felix 13.2.1.1.2

            Why didn’t you let her out of the car?

            • Hateatea 13.2.1.1.2.1

              + 100 felix

            • kiwi_prometheus 13.2.1.1.2.2

              Oh that was a story related to me from a close family member, she was frightened and ended up leaving the get together.

              Also, why didn’t she leave the car herself?

              • felix

                Oh I assumed it was your family gathering, what with him being your bro and all.

                Was your friend frightened for the whole weekend? Sounds awful.

                Is it just the three maoris that you’ve met yourself then?

          • Hateatea 13.2.1.1.3

            Actually, “Once Were Warriors” is fiction, I heard it from the authors own mouth.
            Of course there are people for whom alcohol, anger, violence, poverty is a problem. They come in all ethnicities, religious beliefs or lack of them and in every strata of society

            • kiwi_prometheus 13.2.1.1.3.1

              Sorry, I used “only” in the sense that it must be untrue.

              Like Charles Dickens – it is fiction but certainly tells us a lot about life, especially for kids, in 18th C England.

            • Vicky32 13.2.1.1.3.2

              Actually, “Once Were Warriors” is fiction, I heard it from the authors own mouth.

              Maybe, yes, however I lived something rather similar until I gathered my courage, left him, and lost custody of my son to him! :(
              However, it’s true that such things happen in all ethnicities etc.

          • Draco T Bastard 13.2.1.1.4

            I could keep going all day with the anecdotes dude.

            And they’d still be just that – anecdotes.

            BTW, I read a few years back that Maori didn’t hit their kids until after the arrival of the Pakeha. Don’t know how accurate that is but there are numerous cultures around the world that don’t have a culture of hitting their children. The most high profile culture that does, though, is English culture.

            • kiwi_prometheus 13.2.1.1.4.1

              Like I said the stats are there too.

              Predictably enough, racked with white liberal guilt, you seek to explicate maori and blame all the bad stuff on Whities.

              • Draco T Bastard

                White liberal guilt? No, that’s just another delusion from your fragmented mind.

          • Adele 13.2.1.1.5

            Kiwi Prometheus

            The Crimes Act is being revised where it will be a criminal offence to ignore harm being perpetrated on children or vulnerable adults. I have stood up to gangsters and bullies in defence of others whereas you have used the suffering of others to perpetuate your bigoted slant on all Māori.

            If anecdote is evidence, I know heaps of Māori that love and respect their children, their old people, and even Pākehā. I know heaps of Māori that will never raise their hands towards another. I know heaps of Māori that will give willingly to help others without payment.

            A Pākehā mate of mine just last week had to call into a petrol station on her way to Taupo as she was running out of petrol. Unfortunately for her she had left her purse at home. The Māori proprietors gave her $20 without making her beg or mortgage her home as security.

            Prometheus supposedly championed the cause of mankind – your views are so small-minded that I suggest a renaming should take place to whatever Greek God is the champion of lost causes.

      • felix 13.2.2

        What does the word “lesbian” have to do with your story, k_p?

        • kiwi_prometheus 13.2.2.1

          I’m sorry, I don’t understand felix, have I done something wrong?

          • felix 13.2.2.1.1

            That’s ok. A lot of people don’t understand felix.

            I don’t know if you’ve done something wrong. Why do you ask?

            • kiwi_prometheus 13.2.2.1.1.1

              “A lot of people don’t understand felix.”

              Is that why felix seems angry and frustrated all the time?

              “Why do you ask?”

              Just that I mention the “L” word and suddenly you are all over my arse.

              • Hateatea

                I am curious too – in the context of Maori bashing, you slipped in a lesbian. Are you homophobic as well as racist?

                • kiwi_prometheus

                  See, another bully tactic, scream “Racist!” at anyone who doesn’t tow the PC line.

                  • Hateatea

                    Defensive, much?? If the cap fits, wear it.
                     
                    You are happy to stereotype when it suits your agenda. I ma happy to reciprocate using the evidence you have personally supplied

                    • kiwi_prometheus

                      I haven’t stereotyped.

                      The stats are there, the anecdotes are there. Other people have made the same observations.

                      But you will just keep screaming “Racist! It’s all the whities fault!.”

                      Had a Maori room mate at the backpackers, he comes back 3am blind drunk reeking of it, and proceeds to try to take a leak in the middle of the room. I jumped out of bed “Whoa dude not there!”, opened the door and he headed for the light – “Oh thanks bro!”

                      He comes back in and starts crashing around, so the young English tourist back packer in the bunk above him ask him to be quiet. So the Maori guy threatens him “Me and my bros will deal to you!”.

                      He was always hanging around the social room drinking and smoking. He felt a special affection for the Irish backpackers because of “the Englosh!”. The affection wasn’t reciprocated.

                    • felix

                      I guess your mate behaved that way because he’s maori.

                      (See how much better it works when you don’t confuse the issue by making him Jewish or gay or disabled as well?)

              • felix

                I’m in a state of zen-like calm.

                The reason I asked about your descriptor “lesbian” is that it confused me. I didn’t understand how it related to the story and I thought maybe I had missed some important aspect of the story, and that if you could explain it for me I’d be up to speed with everyone else.

                • kiwi_prometheus

                  You didn’t just appear out of no where to question me about the “L” word. If you are accusing me of something spit it out.

                  You are quite the political animal, felix.

                  • felix

                    It’s not a swear word. You don’t need to use the initial.

                    But why did you use it in your story? What information does it convey to the reader? What changes if the word is omitted?

                    As a writer of fiction these are the questions you need to ask yourself constantly.

                    • kiwi_prometheus

                      Well you would know from all the feminist “critiques” you have read or written.

                    • felix

                      lol you do have some funny ideas about me k_p. I don’t think I’ve ever read anything I’d call a “feminist critique”. I mostly read technical manuals.

                      I’m not going to keep asking you about the lesbian aspect of your story as you clearly don’t want to talk about it.

                      And that’s ok. Writers often get tired of explaining the choices they make. I do think it’s something you might like to think about though for the sake of your craft.

      • Hateatea 13.2.3

        For every ‘Maori are bashers’ anecdote you can tell, I can source you with Dutch, Sots, Irish, English, etc, etc. People, especially disadvantaged people, can express anger and frustration in inappropriate ways.
         
        My ex was physically, verbally, emotionally and sexually abusive to me. I may be Maori but he was a Scottish New Zealander. So, by your standards, am I to blame because I am Maori or was he just an angry, bitter man who chose his fists, feet and temper to bully and coerce?

        • Vicky32 13.2.3.1

          My ex was physically, verbally, emotionally and sexually abusive to me. I may be Maori but he was a Scottish New Zealander.

          FWIW Hateatea, my ex was the same to me. I am an English/Scots New Zealander, he was a Maori (he died 5 months ago). His family is very different, he was a distinct oddity (drug and alcohol dependent) and so it just goes to show it’s going on amongst all peoples… :(

      • travellerev 13.2.4

        Wow, were where you working?
         

      • John72 13.2.5

        k p, the truth hurts. You have upset a lot of people. I would say your critics are bleeding badly and since you have cut deep they can only use irrational, personal abuse as defence. I would not have the time or courage to discuss the subjects with anyone on this site. They only recognise their own faults in other people.
        The Press (today) has several very good articles on the departure of Manners, Courtesy and Respect For Others during the last 50 years. Your critics are an example.
        Your critics only want to hear from people who will confirm what they already believe. Even some site Moderators are not without fault.
        John 8:7 “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”

        • North 13.2.5.1

          John72………I guess your full name is John1872.

          Get a life in the 21st century for Christ’s Sake.

          Manners Courtesy Respect indeed.

  12. I haven’t seen Michael Valley posting here recently on why we have to liberate all those poor brown people from their despots all over the middle east and his MSM propaganda slant may have something to do with it but I sometimes think about him and this is one of the moments. I would really like to read his spin on this one.

     

  13. captain hook 15

    Better hurry on down to MSN news where their straw poll today is who would you vote for.
    Hooton has already massed his troops so make your vote count.

    • kiwi_prometheus 15.1

      Don’t stress about it – the Nats are obviously on a steady downward projectory regardless of marketing ploys like instant polls.

  14. Jackal 16

    Groser promotes ecological disaster

    I had to laugh while reading a speech given by Tim Groser yesterday in which he claims that people who promote localized food production and security of supply are acting instinctually and that not wanting to rely on other countries for food is rooted in people’s hunter and gatherer DNA, which is a little insane to say the least…

  15. RedBaron 17

    Help please.
    I see something that will come up in parliament soon that is based on some pretty solid misinformation being bandied about. Nothing unusual about that. Now I want to go lobbying. I can go and see the spokeperson that each party has for this area taking along, I imagine, with a short written document as back up. Do I also go and see each individual MP as well . What else would be effective?

    Secondly is there any way here of ensuring that a post goes into moderation deliberately?

    • felix 17.1

      There are certain words that guarantee moderation. Mentioning the surname of a famous Austrian with a Chaplin moustache and a fetish for Wagner will do it.

    • NickS 17.2

      On the second thing – putting “tr*ll” (sub * for o) will chuck a post into the moderation queue.

  16. joe90 18

    The birther nonsense that’s been going on over at the sewer recently prompted me to track down something I saw a few weeks ago.

    Abraham Africanus I : his secret life, revealed under the mesmeric influence ; mysteries of the White House. New York : J.F. Feeks [1864]

  17. joe90 19

    Psychiatry Giant Sorry for Backing Gay ‘Cure’

    A draft of Spitzers letter of apology

    Several months ago I told you that because of my revised view of my 2001 study of reparative therapy changing sexual orientation, I was considering writing something that would acknowledge that I now judged the major critiques of the study as largely correct. After discussing my revised view of the study with Gabriel Arana, a reporter for American Prospect, and with Malcolm Ritter, an Associated Press science writer, I decided that I had to make public my current thinking about the study. Here it is.

    Basic Research Question. From the beginning it was: “can some version of reparative therapy enable individuals to change their sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual?” Realizing that the study design made it impossible to answer this question, I suggested that the study could be viewed as answering the question, “how do individuals undergoing reparative therapy describe changes in sexual orientation?” – a not very interesting question.

    The Fatal Flaw in the Study – There was no way to judge the credibility of subject reports of change in sexual orientation. I offered several (unconvincing) reasons why it was reasonable to assume that the subject’s reports of change were credible and not self-deception or outright lying. But the simple fact is that there was no way to determine if the subject’s accounts of change were valid.

    I believe I owe the gay community an apology for my study making unproven claims of the efficacy of reparative therapy. I also apologize to any gay person who wasted time and energy undergoing some form of reparative therapy because they believed that I had proven that reparative therapy works with some “highly motivated” individuals.

    Robert Spitzer. M.D.
    Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry,
    Columbia University

    • North 19.1

      Interesting post and link there Joe90.

      The advocates of “cure” are frequently those who also insist that sexual orientation is a matter of personal choice – the thrust being that it’s as simple as one’s preference for rugby union over rugby league or pale ale over stout.

      The late Phil (?) Raffills, the vehemently anti-gay former principal of Avondale College and religious right Auckland City councillor was one of those on that buzz.

      The obvious question I mentally posed when he was in full piety about this: “OK Phil…….tell me about the time when you made the personal choice to be straight rather than gay.”

      As I recall the whole thing turned to spectacular farce when a recent past head prefect of Avondale College, personally chosen by Raffills, came out and “confessed” to being gay.

      This Young Gay Man Of Disgusting Choice also hinted that Raffills, the educator darling of the Right at the time, was something of a moral bully.

      Yep, sounds right.

    • joe90 19.2

      I’m wondering whether the apology will be recognised by the knuckle draggers who’ve been trotting out Spitzers original conclusion to support their bigotry.

      And I’ve always wanted to ask someone like the late Raffills or his ilk when did you decide that you were straight?.

  18. Dv 20

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10806979

    Parata is quoting average teacher salary of 71,000 , only reached after several years experience.

    that is the top of the scale for a class room teacher AND it started on the 13th of may this year.

    So the 71k cannot be the average for the ‘ordinary’ teacher.

    I smell spin.

    • North 20.1

      It may not be spin you smell…….it may be the stench of a rotten egg. Why ?

      Well I don’t know for sure but I do know that in Moerewa and other parts of the North the stunning Ms Parata is known to a number as “Heki Pirau” Parata – translation – “Rotten Egg” Parata.

    • muzza 20.2

      Teacher average = 71

      Warfies average = 91

      Both spun the wrong way , these numbers stink!

      • John72 20.2.1

        Someone needs more media support. Does the media care about you and me or is it just making money?

        • McFlock 20.2.1.1

          welcome to capitalism.

          • John72 20.2.1.1.1

            Granted, BUT, the wharfies would not have got to $91K without media support. Is that capitalism? I do not know. (Q. “Much is invested in having us believe everything we read in newspapers and everything our government tells us. If we are not thinking for ourselves we are easy targets for control and manipulation”. Printed in USA 15 years ago.)
            As I see it, the media are just selling to a population pictured in “Corination Streed” .

            • McFlock 20.2.1.1.1.1

              I hope you mean “public misperception that wharfies routinely take home $91k/yr would not have happened without media support”.

              Actually, the Daily Show had a fascinating observation recently, after Obama’s comments about gay marriage: in five years the Fox debate has gone from “gay marriage will end the world” to “he only said it because it’s popular”. While most money comes from corporates, media still need to sell stuff in order to make money – if nobody buys what’s being advertised, the advertisers back off, so the media has to find the balance between money and believability. That’s why Glenn Beck is off air, even though he was their biggest herald. Capitalism is cannibalism.

              But the media also shapes perception, so it’s a complex system of persuasion then token acquiescence.

      • mickysavage 20.2.2

        I share your skepticism Muzza.  I found this document on the minedu site which does suggest that it is $71k per annum.  I presume this includes headmasters salaries which would drive the average up.

  19. Murray Olsen 21

    Sugar beet would probably grow much better than sugar cane in Aotearoa.

  20. Hateatea 22

    @ Foreign Waka 7pm 22/05/2012
    I didn’t say that there IS tribal law in New Zealand, I said that the understanding of rangatira in 1840 was that within Te Tiriti, whānau, hapū and iwi would manage their own affairs including their forests, fisheries and traditions while the settlers would manage their people. Given the significant population imbalance in the favour of iwi, this was a reasonable assumption. This they saw as tino rangatiratanga for iwi while the tāngata tiriti would have kawanatanga. This did not turn out to be the case, population ratios changed, the huge influx of new settlers were told nothing of Te Tiriti and the base for grievance was set.
     
    As we saw ourselves (and still do to a degree) as separate nations living side by side with other nations, I would not accept your definition as apartheid, however, I cannot ‘control’ how you see things, nor would I wish to. I merely offered some background and an alternative viewpoint to yours and others. Whether you choose to ponder upon my views, do more research or blithely continue on your particular path is entirely up to you.
     
    Kia tau te rangimarie

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    Remember the Nelson Red Devils case? Back in 2012, drugs and firearms charges against 28 alleged gang members were thrown out because police abused the court process by forging a search warrant and an arrest warrant to build the credibility… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Best and worst New Zealand flag designs
    Dan Taipua, Dave Bell and Lucy Zee review some of the designs submitted for the for the new New Zealand flag. Check out the full gallery of designs here. ...
    1 day ago
  • World News Brief, Friday May 22
    PunditBy Daily Digest
    1 day ago
  • A hard rain is a’gonna fall.
    Although I am loathe to prognosticate on fluid situations and current events, I have been thinking about how the conflict in Iraq has been going. Although I do not believe that the Islamic State (IS) is anywhere close to being… ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Got business out of town? Need a hire car?
    Whether you are heading of town for a conference or taking a break and need a hire car, your TEU Member Advantage program has you covered.  Use your member benefits to access either reduced car hire rates or excess on… ...
    1 day ago
  • An abuse of the OIA
    In the wake of revelations that Prime Minister John Key had systematically and repeatedly bullied, sexually harassed and assaulted a cafe waitress, the New Zealand Herald published a piece exposing the victim. It seemed like retribution, and the involvement of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    frogblogBy Eugenie Sage
    1 day ago
  • Calling Peak Car?
    There’s often a lot of discussion around the future of transport – particularly in cities. We’ve talked many times before about how transport trends are changing, how we’re seeing people drive less and catch PT more, how changing preferences amongst younger people in… ...
    1 day ago
  • Australia’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on...
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Fiji: Removing the opposition
    Last year, Nauru's government abused its parliamentary majority to suspend the opposition from Parliament on a spurious privilege motion. Its a disease which is spreading: last night, Fiji's "democratic" regime did the same, suspending an opposition MP for making a… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2015: Don’t worry about the surplus, worry about this… Whiteboar...
    Bill’s budget put a bit of extra change in the pocket of poor families, but that came at the cost of the promised surplus. But should you be worried about it? With government debt still only at 25%… ...
    Gareth’s WorldBy Gareth Morgan
    1 day ago
  • The productivity trap – heads they win, tails we lose
    The article below was written in 2006, so some of the stats are a bit dated.  However the fundamental argument remains.  For instance, NZ productivity growth continues to be poor and NZ capitalists remain behind most of the OECD in… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • Attention leftie campaigners: Watch Lynton Crosby
    This is a video of Lynton Crosby, of Crosby/Textor fame and infamy, talking about how he approaches campaigns. It is well worth an hour of any serious campaigner's time - whether they're of the left or the right. I've… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Out there in the world
    Friday Music posts here don't generally have much to do with my day job helping make a media TV show, but next week's Media Take is an exception. We're putting together a New Zealand music month-themed programme and one of the… ...
    2 days ago
  • Government announces plan to grow Auckland housing bubble
    The key initiative in yesterday’s budget is a plan to grow Auckland’s housing bubble. Auckland’s housing bubble is projected to take over from dairy farming as the fastest-growing sector of the New Zealand economy. Consider a typical Mangere housewife. For… ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    2 days ago
  • Paul F Tompkins: The undisputed king of podcasts
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  • Budget 2015: What does it mean?
    ...
    2 days ago
  • What next?
    It feels really, really surreal to nearly be done with my degree. And terrifying, mostly. Right now I have a single 2000 word essay remaining for Politics of Protest and then three exams mid-way through next month, and… that’s it.… ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    2 days ago
  • Solo parents forced to work; but where are the quality jobs?
    The Government is increasing the expectations of paid work from solo parents without any thought as to where the jobs will be, the Council of Trade Unions said today. “There are already 100,000 part time workers who are wanting more secure… ...
    CTUBy andrew.chick
    2 days ago
  • April-15 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    2 days ago
  • April-14 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    2 days ago
  • Children and steady-as-you-go – but how steady?
    There are three political dimensions to the budget’s star “children in hardship” item. One is John Key’s ownership. That fits his protestations of concern about disadvantaged children — though action has been slow coming. He made his pile in… ...
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    2 days ago
  • Thoughts on budget 2015
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    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • What if your MP was decided on the flip of a coin?
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  • Gordon Campbell on Budget 2015
    From the outset, the slogan for yesterday’s Budget – “The Plan Is Working” – begged to be mocked. There’s actually a plan for the national economy? Who knew? And its been working for whom, exactly? Not for families in poverty,… ...
    2 days ago
  • Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific
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    2 days ago

  • How many victims missing out on protection?
    Hundreds of domestic abuse victims could be missing out on getting protection orders because they are unable to get legal aid, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“In the last two years some 351 people who applied for legal aid for… ...
    6 hours ago
  • Government kicks hardworking whanau
    A major incentive to help young Kiwis and people on low incomes to start saving has been kicked out from under them with the National-led Government ramming through short-sighted legislation under Urgency today, Labour’s Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says.… ...
    6 hours ago
  • Speculator tax political stunt gone wrong
    Bill English’s admission he doesn’t know whether National’s new speculator tax will have any effect shows last weekend’s announcement by the Prime Minister was a desperate political stunt, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “This Government is so desperate to… ...
    9 hours ago
  • The value of parenting
    This week, as part of the Budget, the government introduced a bill to address child poverty. This bill will require parents receiving income support to look for part-time work once their youngest child is three years of age rather than… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    13 hours ago
  • Another new tax, another broken promise
    National has unveiled yet another new tax in this budget – a rural broadband levy that will almost certainly result in an immediate price hike for internet and telephone connections across New Zealand, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said “The… ...
    1 day ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 day ago
  • Labour MPs join youth to take part in 40 hour famine
    A team of Labour MPs took part in the 2015 World Vision 40 hour famine and we were told by World Vision and the young people, that it was the first time MPs had joined them and how appreciative they… ...
    1 day ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
    Recently  TVNZ ran a story with confronting footage showing rodeo animals being punched, repeatedly shocked with electronic prods and having their tails violently twisted over their backs. It was clear that significant force was being used behind the scenes to make… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    1 day ago
  • Budget puts the squeeze on police
    The Government has cut funding to the New Zealand police force in the latest Budget, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The reduction is a whopping $15.3 million that could put front line officers at risk. ...
    1 day ago
  • Crucial social services take another hit
    The Government looks set to slash half a million dollars of funding for critical social services, including Women’s Refuge and Barnados, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni “Taking $500,000 from organisations aimed at improving the lives of vulnerable families… ...
    1 day ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 day ago
  • Budget silent on small business
    The Government has completely ignored one of the most important sectors of the economy – small and medium-sized enterprises – in Budget 2015, Labour’s Small Business spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. "A stunning 41 per cent of jobs were created by… ...
    1 day ago
  • Thank you John, it’s been bloody marvellous
    The departure of John Campbell is a blow to current affairs investigative journalism, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Campbell Live stood out in its field. Its axing comes as local broadcasting in New Zealand remains in a state of… ...
    1 day ago
  • KiwiSaver cut shows no long-term plan
    National’s cutting of the KiwiSaver kickstart is incredibly short-term thinking, typical of a Budget that is woefully short on ideas to generate wealth and opportunity, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand’s savings rate is far too low. KiwiSaver… ...
    2 days ago
  • National hits the panic button for its 7th Budget
    National has hit the panic button for its 7th Budget in a desperate attempt to look like they’re taking action to reduce our shameful child poverty rates, but they are giving with one hand and taking with the other, Opposition… ...
    2 days ago
  • Panic and back-flips can’t hide twin deficits
    National’s token measures to fight fires they have left burning for seven long years can’t hide a Budget that is long on broken promises, short on vision and fails to reach surplus, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “After being… ...
    2 days ago
  • Auckland land measure seven years too late
    National are so desperate to look like they are doing something about the Auckland housing crisis they have dusted off Labour’s 2008 inventory of government land available for housing and re-announced it, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Despite National… ...
    3 days ago
  • Access to gender reassignment surgery essential
    I was frankly disgusted to hear the Minister for Health say that funding gender reassignment surgeries is a “nutty idea”. A recent study found that in New Zealand 1% of young people identified themselves as transgender, and 3% were unsure… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • Global milk prices now lowest in 6 years
    The latest fall in the global dairy price has brought it to the lowest level in six years and shows there must be meaningful action in tomorrow’s Budget to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Dairy prices… ...
    4 days ago
  • Big risks as CYF checks stopped
    Revelations that Child, Youth and Family is no longer assisting home-based early childhood educators by vetting potential employees should set alarm bells ringing, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Doing away with an extra mechanism for checking potential new employees… ...
    4 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    4 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    4 days ago
  • State of origin
    Kiwis are increasingly concerned about the food they give their families. New Zealand consumers have the right to know where their food has come from, particularly when it involves animals, and should be able to expect our Government to label… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    4 days ago
  • Relationships Aotearoa
    It is disturbing that Relationships Aotearoa, a voluntary organisation set up in 1949 to help couples struggling with their relationships following the upheavals of World War II, may be forced to close, says Acting Spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community… ...
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • House prices to a crack $1 million in 17 months
    The average Auckland home is on track to cost $1 million in 17 months’ time if nothing substantial is done to rein in soaring price rises, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Auckland’s house prices have skyrocketed 63 per cent… ...
    5 days ago
  • Vital support services can’t be left in lurch
    The National Government has big questions to answer about how a provider of services to thousands of vulnerable New Zealanders is set to fold, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. Relationships Aotearoa which provides support and counselling to families, individuals… ...
    5 days ago
  • Treasury and IRD on a capital gains tax
    Both the Treasury and IRD have been advising the National Government on the benefits of a capital gains tax. Documents released to the Green Party under an Official Information Act request show that John Key has been selective with the… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    5 days ago
  • Charity legislation needs review
    It is unacceptable that the big corporate based charities claim  millions in annual income tax exemptions, while small community based and operated non-profit organisations  struggle to gain official charity status, Labour’s acting spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community Sector Louisa… ...
    5 days ago
  • John’s panic-Key response to housing crisis
    John Key needs to tell New Zealanders what caused his sudden change of heart that led to the Government’s scrambled and last-minute housing measures, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “The Prime Minister’s sudden rush of blood to his head followed… ...
    6 days ago
  • Keep our Assets Christchurch Campaign: An update
    I recently presented my submission to keep Christchurch Council assets at the Christchurch City Council’s public hearings on its 10 year plan on 13 May. The hearings are live-streamed and recorded so you can watch them on www.ccc.govt.nz. The Council’s… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    6 days ago
  • John Key finally admits there’s a housing crisis
    John Key’s weak measures to rein in the astronomical profits property speculators are making are an admission – finally – that there is a housing crisis, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “But yet again National is tinkering with the housing… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government stifles voices in CYFs review
    The Government’s exclusion of the Māori Women’s Welfare League in a panel on the future of CYFs is a cynical ploy to stifle views, says Labour’s Māori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “It's unbelievable that a significant review on the future… ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the Otago Chamber of Commerce
    Thank you very much for the opportunity to be here today. It’s a pleasure as always to be back in the town that raised me. Growing up in St Kilda meant that there was one thing that was a big… ...
    1 week ago
  • Key can’t just be Prime Minister for Parnell
    John Key must show New Zealanders in next week’s Budget that he is more than the Prime Minister for Parnell, and is also the Prime Minister for Pine Hill, Putararu and Palmerston North, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. In… ...
    1 week ago
  • Stop the conversions
    This week, some Waikato locals took me and intrepid photographer Amanda Rogers on a tour of some  lakes and waterways in their region, and up to the massive dairy conversions in the upper catchment of the Waikato River. It… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • More regional jobs go in Corrections reshape
    News that 194 Corrections staff are to lose their jobs will have ramifications not only for them and their families but for the wider community, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. Prison units at Waikeria, Tongariro and Rimutaka face closure… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government’s climate meetings off to a bumpy start
    On Wednesday, I attended a hui and an evening meeting that the Government had organised in Nelson as part of its climate change consultation tour, to support the Nelson community telling the Government to take meaningful action on climate change.… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Taxpayers the only ones left feeling blue
    Ministry of Social Development bosses could have saved themselves thousands of dollars in consultants’ fees by providing staff with rose-tinted spectacles, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. A report out today reveals the Ministry is spending over half a… ...
    1 week ago
  • Why are the regions still facing restrictions?
    Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford is questioning why the regions should continue to be saddled with LVR lending restrictions announced by the Reserve Bank today. “Labour has been calling for the regions to be exempted from LVRs for the best… ...
    1 week ago
  • The high costs of weak environmental regulation
    Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere is described on the Department of Conservation website as “Canterbury’s largest and New Zealand’s fifth largest [lake], and an internationally important wildlife area.” But the lake is also polluted by nutrients leaching from farms in the catchment.… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • Submissions to Wellington City Council on their Gambling Venues Policy
    Every three years Councils across the country are required to check that their gambling venue policies are still fit for purpose and they can choose to consult on their policy if they are thinking of making changes. Councils don’t have… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank action shows Govt out of touch and out of ideas
    The Reserve Bank’s unprecedented measures today show it understands the serious risks of the overheating housing market – in complete contrast to John Key’s refusal to acknowledge the crisis, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The Bank is right to… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Send us your snaps: 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year we've hit a milestone. We're turning 25.To help celebrate a quarter of a century, please send us your photos from the last 25 years of the Green Party Aotearoa New Zealand! Note: Photos must be jpg, gif or… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year the Green Party sends 25. To help us celebrate a quarter of a century please send us you photos of 25 years of the Green Party!Photos must be jpg,gif or png and smaller than 2MB. If you are… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bay growth plan too little too late
    Today’s Bay of Plenty growth study from MBIE is another example of Government spin - lots of talk but little action, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Cunliffe.  “This is a region that desperately needs to develop the downstream processing… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government bows to ACC pressure
     The Government has finally buckled to pressure from Labour and the New Zealand public in making a half billion dollar cut to ACC levies, but the full benefits are two years away,” says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “$500 million over… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • False figures cloud Auckland transport facts
    The Prime Minister should apologise and issue a correction after both he and Transport Minister Simon Bridges have been caught out misrepresenting facts on Auckland’s transport spending, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Both John Key and Simon Bridges have… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt books confirm National can’t post surplus
    The last publication of the Government’s books before the budget shows National will break its promise of seven years and two election campaigns and fail to get the books in order, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government is… ...
    2 weeks ago

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