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Open mike 22/05/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 22nd, 2012 - 116 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…

116 comments on “Open mike 22/05/2012”

  1. Bored 1

    2012 Premier RWNJ Darwin Award…Crimpie for “Have you ever had sex against a tree”?

    • Hateatea 1.1

      That was so gratuitously awful. What would make anyone think that was an okay thing to ask, let alone while there were cameras around?

      • Bored 1.1.1

        In the immortal words of Harold Steptoe, “You dirty old man!”

        • Hateatea 1.1.1.1

          LOL

          • Tigger 1.1.1.1.1

            Are we sure this man is in his right mind? Happy to sling mud at racists, not at someone who looks to me like he needs help.

            • Bored 1.1.1.1.1.1

              That thought had passed my mind: he guy is definitely a fruit loop. Suppose the question is how long has he been like this, is it dementia or a similar age related thing? Sad really.

              • Carol

                Looked like dementia to me, because he was so slow in replying to questions. It took him a while to formulate answers and seemed like he was dredging up memories of what he has thought in the past.

    • vto 1.2

      Well Louis Crimp is clearly an ignorant pig of a man with shallowness in spades. In fact he sounds like he lives in a shallow mud estuary, all clogged as he is.

      But he expresses a background view which I frequently bring up around here. He clearly does not appreciate that there are two separate sets of rules for two types of people in New Zealand – Maori and non-Maori. This has led him to resentment and anger, which of course has led straight to the hatred that he has been subjected to and the hatred that he expresses.

      Two separate sets of rules are not sustainable. This should be patently obvious in most every community on the planet – white, pink, red, yellow, muslim, christian, spots and stripes. But we stick our heads in the sand here and think that it is somehow different down here. But it is not. We are no different we kiwis to any other people on the globe.

      Two separate sets of rules may be appropriate for a period of time (perhaps another generation or two) to assist in righting past wrongs and I don’t think most NZers have a problem with putting things back to a balance. But as a form of permanent setting it is completely and utterly flawed – and it leads directly to the some of the attitudes expressed by ignorant Crimp. It is a dangerous situation.

      However, I see no person in the particular Maori-nonMaori circles in New Zealand talking about this situation. Some honesty needs to be brought to this (very particular) issue.

      • Pascal's bookie 1.2.1

        What two sets of rules?

        If you are talking about the treaty, then I’m not sure what can be done, or why it’s so terrible.

        One thing’s fer sure tho, you won’t be able to renegotiate the treaty relationship into something else before Maori feel that the Treaty has been honoured.

        And blathering on about how unfair the deal we signed up to is, won’t go far in getting the feeling felt.

        • vto 1.2.1.1

          You miss my point P’s b. It is about having two systems for two peoples in one land – and based on birthright. Just doesn’t work. The point is simple.

          And in that context the treaty is also flawed in its structure. I didn’t say it is so terrible – I say its structure is flawed. It needs amending to fit a world that is entirely different from that which existed in 1830s NZ.

        • Fortran 1.2.1.2

          What will happen when we become a Republic, and get rid of the Monarchy, (soon) to the Treaty as there will be no Crown to honour it.

          • Pascal's bookie 1.2.1.2.1

            It doesn’t seem to raise too many issues I would think. The ‘crown’ in NZ is parliament.

            Assuming we become a republic via act of parliament, then we are doing so via the treaty, through which parliament gained its right to govern.

            If we become a republic via revultion, things might be different, but I don’t think that’s likely.

            • TheContrarian 1.2.1.2.1.1

              I have the feeling part of us becoming a republic would be honouring the treaty as a contract between Iwi’s and the government. Monarchy or no monarchy.

      • ad 1.2.2

        I have plenty of friends and in-laws of the older persuasion further south than say Blenheim who when you mention matters Maori have a quick red veil cover their minds and all else following is non-repressed rage. I love them but that part of them disgusts me.

        That idea of all settlements complete by 2014 sticks in them like a nationally redemptive moment that they refuse to believe will ever happen. It’s just deep and hard in them, and often they don’t know which way they will vote until they get to the polls.

      • Augustus 1.2.3

        I have much more of a problem with having one set of rules for the economically disadvantaged and another (or rather none) for those who aren’t.

        • vto 1.2.3.1

          Of course Augustus, exact same thing and principles apply.

          Keep applying those principles across all and see what the outcome is

          • Bored 1.2.3.1.1

            VTO, it is brave of you to bring up the issue. That you feel a need to is healthy because like you I think it needs debate, keeping it under covers will never resolve it.

            I have some real concerns touched upon by people above: the biggest is that I do not believe exclusive societies are healthy. For example access to services based upon ability to pay (the ACT way of doing things) or whanau ora (as opposed to universal delivery of welfare etc). There may be merit in some exclusivity but generally I believe it will lead to discord.

            Which is why we need to keep the debate live and in the open, even when we disagree.

          • Uturn 1.2.3.1.2

            VTO as I understand it, the treaty was not about one rule for all. So there is a problem with you thinking there should be i.e. you are ignoring an existing treaty simply because it does not support your contention.

            All people of the world are not all the same, not personally, not culturally. The similar points are we all eat, sleep, shit, love, etc. One of the things that has steered you wrong in thinking there can be one rule for all is forgetting that many cultures do not recognise time and reality as we (pakeha) do. In certain cultures the dead never leave, events are not resolved until certain other acts are achieved and there is no “world that is entirely different from that which existed in 1830s…”.

            To have states within a nation is not unusual. To have multiple cultures within a nation is not unusual. Why do we need one rule for all if relative harmony can be achieved by making sure all have basic needs met and that a dominant party cannot not interfere with others needs? Is it necessary for me to able to wander freely across another person’s land, insult his local arrangements with immunity just so I can feel like I can do anything I want? Perhaps you can give a detailed expression of why you want one rule for all.

            The point about “birth right” I assume refers to maori specifically. As you know maori have got the short end of the stick from their “treaty partners” for some time. Just as a natural resource is not created by the man who mines it, and just as the natural resource will be changed but still exist (hopefully) after he dies, the prejudices and crimes of the past have twisted the “birth right” of maori in NZ. This is the basis for things like affirmative action, or in NZ, the idea that a certain amount of students should be maori at universities, for example. It is an acknowledgement that the losses of the past influence the future and that if pakeha hadn’t betrayed their words (yes that is underestimating what was done) maori would be in a better position today. If we refused to teach the next generation to read, just closed schools for ten years, do you think that would effect society? And when we opened them again, would we condemn the new underclass for not pulling themselves up by their bootstraps and educating themselves? Would that be fair, do you think? Just? Moral?

            Let me give you an example. You come from a family with long running cultural and community connections. There is a war, your family is killed, your culture is dominated by the foreign invader and the world as you know it changes overnight. Most of the time you simply move food to mouth, but have no idea who you are anymore because everything you hold dear, your ability to understand the world and reason you own identity, is rejected by the people around you. Symptoms of your distress are masked or emphasised depending ont he environment. After a while, the struggle becomes the new identity, and you are condemned for it. The struggle identity even encourages you to attack your own people. Your children react to your problems and compensate and extend them to their families. For the next 150 years, your family struggles to adapt. Tell me, if you had not been invaded, would these things have happened naturally? Now, if that same oppressor comes along and wants to right his forefathers crimes, where should he start? From today, discarding the past, or in discussion with you, including the past, from your point of view?

            If an oppressor was not foreign, if they shared the same culture as you, but were simply from another village, would that excuse and lessen the actions of a foreign oppressor that dominated all? No, because if any reparations were later made, the language and terms would be under the same culture. Understanding would be possible between the two parties. Even a prisoner of war, later made to be a slave, still within his own culture, will know his place. But an outcast in a foreign enforced culture experiences major psychological trauma.

            VTO, you cannot go into this discussion thinking that everyone thinks like you or begin with a conclusion and work backwards to an enforced rule. Do it that way and you simply repeat the political hostilities metered out to maori, and others, and expose the intent of making your own life easy, at the cost of others, by trying to claim the problem does not exist.

            • Sam Hall 1.2.3.1.2.1

              Hello. The two books about The Tao have been “found”. Had them by my bed for a while. Reread your post. Belief that the journey has recommenced pace. Imagine posts will change now. Only started posting anywhere on NZ Herald last week. Once begun, Worth guiding others?

            • Sam Hall 1.2.3.1.2.2

              I think I stuffed up my post. The Two Tao books were found today.Onwards and upwards. Worth in guiding others? Imagine posts will change. Thankyou

        • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 1.2.3.2

          So, you are against a progressive tax system then, Augustus?

      • Hateatea 1.2.4

        The original premise of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, as sold to the chiefs, was that the chiefs would manage what was theirs (pretty much everything), according to tikanga māori and the tāngata tiriti (settlers) would make laws to manage their people. At the time there was great concern about the drunkenness and lawlessness of some of the sailors etc who were causing difficulties in and around Kororareka.
         
        That is where the debate around the words ‘kawanatanga’ = governance and tino rangatiratanga = chiefly authority or sovereignty come in. Whether by accident, misunderstanding or deliberate misuse, most of the early Treaty difference begins there. That so many do not actually know (or care) about these and other fundamental differences in what was promised and what the settler governments presumed / assumed to be their rights, is sad after so many years of genuine efforts to educate more widely about Te Tiriti.

    • Janice 1.3

      Was he instrumental in getting Hilary Calvert on the ACT list?

  2. Carol 2

    So Dunking Garner quit the Nation over “disagreements” with the producer – ongoing, but in the final instance it was about how to interview Hekia Parata. Given Garner always seemed like a National Government shill, I’d like to know more of the content of these disagreements.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/entertainment/news/article.cfm?c_id=1501119&objectid=10807392

    TV3 political editor Duncan Garner has walked out of weekend news show The Nation over a dispute with executive producer Richard Harman.

    Garner was due to interview Education Minister Hekia Parata on Saturday morning, but unexpectedly quit 24 hours earlier.

    Harman told The Diary the dispute was a “trivial blow-up over the allocation duration of the interview”. But Garner said it was a difference of opinion over Harman’s approach to the show and how he should interview Parata.

    • tc 2.1

      It’s probably about Harmon wanting some probing and inquisition on the flaky Parata, it’s what you’re there for and it’s good TV getting a PR Spin only minister off their script.

      Garner probably took the ‘ my way or the highway’ approach which he’s known to do being an egotistical twat first and a political journo on rare occasions.

      Duncy wouldn’t like offending his idols by doing his job, easier to sling the hook. Harmon wouldn’t be worried as he’ll get someone better now.

    • Fortran 2.2

      Rachael Smally did a good job in Garner’s absence I understand.
      And she does not look like a Garner, a slob.
      Much more pretty too.

    • Vicky32 2.3

      Given Garner always seemed like a National Government shill, I’d like to know more of the content of these disagreements.

      Absolutely! Which is why I have never put any credence in anything he says…

      • Garner is awful. Having meet him in person a few times I can assure you he is as bad in real life as he is on TV

        • Carol 2.3.1.1

          I can never understand how he got the job as a political journalist, let alone as the head pol journo on TV3?

          • TheContrarian 2.3.1.1.1

            Because he is knowledgeable and has his finger on the political process. Doesn’t make him a nice guy but he is politically adept.

            • Carol 2.3.1.1.1.1

              Really? That’s not how he looks to me. It just looks to me like he has his finger on Key’s pulse. Rachel Smalley seems, so far, to be more open-minded and aware of diverse political perspectives.

              • Not liking what he says isn’t the same as him not being knowledgeable about what he is saying.

                • Carol

                  In Garner’s case, I’d say his knowledge doesn’t go far beyond the slant he takes.

                  I think there are other journalists who are far more knowledgeable than him (e.g. Brent Edwards on RNZ).

                  • Garner, for all his faults, has been around for a long time and knows some real heavy weights. You don’t get that far without knowing a few tricks….again, that doesn’t mean he isn’t a…..”insert derogatory term of your choice”.

                    • Carol

                      Knowing a few tricks from being around a while? In his case it may not be as much what he knows as who he knows?

                    • journalism and politics are based on both what you know and who you know. Again, just not liking him doesn’t mean he doesn’t know what he is doing.

                    • Jackal

                      Seems strange that he’s gone soon after making up some shit about Shearer telling Cunliffe not to go on The Nation.

  3. AAMC 3

    Not sure if many of you got to see THE FOUR HORSEMEN at the doco film fest, but here’s a piece the director put out yesterday, the 27 principles of The Renegade Economist, a plan for a better future without Orthodox economics.

    “Creating a set of principles on which to base a successful process of global political and economic change has to be a collaborative project. To this end everyone is welcome to comment or make suggestions for their improvement.”

    http://www.renegadeeconomist.com/fourhorsemenfilm/the-27-principles.html

  4. joe90 4

    The Take, a 2004 film about workers reclaiming a foundry in Argentina is on YouTube.

    • Kevin Welsh 4.1

      Fantastic movie and very appropriate to what is happening now with South American governments claiming back what rightfully belongs to their people.

  5. muzza 5

    World sharemarkets up on relief rebound

    “We sold off on some fear, and not all of that fear was realized,” Frank Lesh, a futures analyst and broker at FuturePath Trading, told Reuters. “We’re in a bit of an oversold bounce in here at the moment.”

    — Never any mention of the High Frequency Trading in these articles!

  6. prism 6

    I suppose I will be berated for callousness but I am sick of hearing about the feelings of bereaved relatives after criminal court cases ad infinitum. There are people suffering sad deaths and injuries all the time needing caring attention and support.

    I don’t want to know every day how people looked in court and whether they seemed sorry, that’s not important to me after the rotten deed has been done. At the end is the predictable and tragically true quote, he/she only gets 10 years while my loved one has no life after this crime and I have lost family for ever. I feel sorry but this grief being publicly displayed is a gross and constant cliche. It is a response to the victim movement which is good when it supports the people around the abused person, and we want them to know we care and to get support but not at the cost of displaying them for media sales.

    Hearing a blow by blow account about Emily Langley who at 17 years (very young) was in another country away from her parents influence, attracted by a jealous, violent young man – a dangerous liaison from the first, is sad news. But it underlines the futility of the whole situation of putting oneself in danger’s way by taking up with somebody who would have given her as an older and wiser woman clues as to his volatility and lack of standards. Sad too is the drowning of the dinghy owner in Auckland, again putting himself and his children in danger’s way. The sadness of his wife who has lost so much in one day must be extreme.

    If only we could hear some ideas at the time of these tragedies that would help to prevent such things happening in the future but we are just encouraged to wallow in the sadness of each event. What about some organisation getting funding to have a small shop near boat ramps that hired out lifejackets so that boaties short of funds could enjoy the water more safely. There would need to be a deposit as well as the hire to avoid rip-offs, and perhaps money-strapped people could be given the opportunity to leave something of value with the shop to cover this and ensure the jackets return. And young women could be provided with self care classes perhaps so they weren’t drawn to macho men who want an icon on their arm rather than a loved person.

    • ianmac 6.1

      Then there is this terrible myth about “closure”. I imagine that the loss of someone close is a tragedy but the constantly repeated belief that closure will heal is to me, daft, and misleading. The way that Sensible Sentencing “Trust?” is allowed to abuse victims of crime by constant public repetitions, is a disgrace.
      Mind you, we have very little support for victims of crime whereas in some countries taxes are used to pay compensation automatically. A bit like ACC is supposed to be?

    • Uturn 6.2

      “If only we could hear some ideas at the time of these tragedies that would help to prevent such things happening in the future but we are just encouraged to wallow in the sadness of each event.”

      You give two suggestions yourself and I’m sure other people would put two and two together and are now safe. But the frustrating thing is that before these events, there were thousands just like them, spelled out every night on the news: Women, stay aware of your lover’s influence; boaties, put on lifejackets. Perhaps asking people to make simple conclusions from case studies is too difficult, but I doubt it. It seems not be intelligence that is the problem. Seems to me that otherwise intelligent people get bullied, manipulated, suckered, caught-up and sleep walk into events that pull emotional strings they don’t know how to handle, and then can’t extricate themselves while also maintaining whatever cultural personal identity they have. Solving everyone’s personal psychology, everyday, and knowing exactly which triggers occur in an infinite range of possiblities, is going to be a huge task.

      To get back to the media angle, orgnaisations like triangle TV openly encourage people to create their own TV programmes, with their help, so if you wanted to begin a “lifeskills” show for pakeha, you or someone could look into that. At present there is a legal advice show running, there is the union report, there is one where the difficulties of polynesian culture meeting pakeha/palangi culture are discussed by people in the polynesian community and church. There is a resource out there. As you point out, it is just white six o’clock mainstream culture that thinks solutions and public service announcements aren’t sexy.

      The main pratfall of us whities trying it within the mainstream would be that eventually someone would come along and turn it into a propaganda machine – political or otherwise – because we just can’t help ourselves with all the social climbing crap that permeates everything now. There’d be theme songs and background music and shaky camera angles to jazz things up and close ups so close you can see into a person’s skin pores. A successful attempt would have to be a very stripped down approach to avoid an obvious bias either toward men, women, hetero’s etc etc. Mostly you can find shows of that type on student radio.

      I remember a great radio show mediated by Steven Grey in the early 2000’s on BFM about drug use. From the point of view of keeping existing users safe they discussed general guidelines to avoid overdoses, safe practices and what to mix and what not to mix and what to look out for in certain fads. And of course they talked about medical assistance and getting off the stuff too. A realistic/practical show, somewhat ahead of it’s time. Haven’t seen or heard anything like it since. Maybe something like that, but examining the drug-like effect of emotions on judgement would be useful.

      • John72 6.2.1

        Uturn, U R right. The current moral standards that are so popular in current TV are not “modern” just fashionable and sell well. The Western world has been through it all before. King Henry VIII married 6 times. History repeats itself.

      • prism 6.2.2

        Uturn
        Yes public good programs would help. And reshown each year, with updates etc. Instead the risky behaviour that leads to tragedy is often the favoured stuff for drama, made to seem exciting and populist (ie USA actors in and out of Betty Ford clinics) and played as reality. Compare to the staged performances of Shakespeare that spelled out human problems well but were obviously plays.

        Setting up real on the ground help systems that save people from themselves would also be good. We aren’t good at this in NZ. We are a judgmental little country. Talk about people receiving huge traffic fines and a man or woman will say primly that all the person needs to do is obey the law. Ridiculous comment when we know that there always will be mistakes or deliberate bad behaviour. That’s human FGS.

        We can prevent many road accidents by having median strips and rumble lines (which I hate) but we drag our feet because if people always drove more carefully we wouldn’t need them. This prating diatribe gives me the pip when we should do something useful. A trailer renting life jackets, an emergency number for unsafe girls and boys with an ‘angel’ to help them, a provision that bad drivers have to take driving theory and practical courses and attend drug rehabilitation if needed. Solid helpful kindly and firm. Not judgmental lazy fault-finding.

        • John72 6.2.2.1

          For 20+ + years there has been a volunteer group out there, Prisoners Aid and Rehabilitation. They are widely recognised in the industry but not in the media. These are people making a personal effort, not just pouring money in and sitting back. Now the Government is claiming credit. I am not familiar with the history of the group but they are nation wide, with full time offices and mentor type volunteers. Some people do care.

      • Sam Hall 6.2.3

        Yep

      • Sam Hall 6.2.4

        HeeHee

    • Bill 6.3

      Gotta keep us a wee bit anxious. Other wise we might get it in our heads that there isn’t really any need for ‘protective’ state appartuses. And we might even begin to think that ‘the stranger’ is first and foremost benevolent and so bring down our own hostile protectionist barriers a little. And then (oh, lordy, lordy!) we might do something really crazy like conduct our affairs face to face and with some trust rather than have them mediated by lawyers and other various professionals out to look after our interests and protect us from the big scary world of misanthropic bastards….which must be the default position of most people (being misanthropic bastards) coz, like, I keep seeing it on the telly and reading about it in mags.

      • muzza 6.3.1

        “I keep seeing it on the telly and reading about it in mags”

        –Exactly Bill , this is the brainwashing which most people pour scorn on people for mentioning, claiming its conspiracy and the like..

        Of course the media is training your thought patterns, and programming your mind!

  7. Penny Bright 7

    Yersterday, three determined women ‘held John Bank’s feet to the fire’, with five banners on the Gillies Ave / Mortimer Pass intersection in Newmarket (Epsom electorate) explaining why we were there.

    Check out http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com ‘Give a grrl a banner’ :)

    Increasing numbers of motorists are ‘tooting’ in support, and there were a number of smiles and ‘thumbs up’ responses.

    FYI – below is a copy of the letter that was pushed into the gap between doors at John Bank’s empty Epsom electorate office at 27 Gillies Ave, yesterday, Monday 21 May 2012.

    “OPEN LETTER TO THE ‘HONORABLE’ JOHN BANKS, MP FOR EPSOM 21 May 2012

    Today, there is a protest being held outside your electorate office at 27 Gillies Ave, Newmarket from 12 noon till 2pm.

    The purpose of this protest is to encourage you to do the ‘honorable’ thing, and resign forthwith as the ACT MP for Epsom, and leave the NZ House of Parliament, before you bring it, and this country ‘perceived’ to be ‘the least corrupt in the world,(http://cpi.transparency.org/cpi2011/results) into further international disrepute.

    How can you honestly consider yourself to be ‘fit for duty’ as either an MP or a Minister of the Crown?

    Why is it that former Labour MP Taito Phillip Field got sentenced for SIX years for ‘bribery and corruption’, for providing ‘immigration advice’ to Thai nationals in exchange for work on his properties – whilst yourself, the Minister of Regulatory Reform is effectively getting political protection from NZ Prime Minister John Key, after you have given ‘immigration assistance’ and Coatsville property purchase ‘assistance’ to a German/ Finnish national, in return for $50,000 donated to your 2010 Auckland Mayoral campaign fund, and gifts valued at over $500 which you failed to declare?

    Are you aware that Kim Dotcom’s ‘John Bank’s song’ has had over 140,000 ‘hits’ on You Tube, in my opinion, helping to make NZ an international laughing stock? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CvRSZxqk_I

    It is also of great concern to me, as a fighter also against ‘white collar’ crime, that ACT’s ‘one law for all’ has yet to apply to both yourself and Don Brash, current and former Leaders of the ACT Party.

    As former fellow directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd, you both signed Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme registered prospectuses dated 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009, which contained untrue statements, but you were never charged for so doing. This is a strict liability offence under s58(3) of the Securities Act 1978, but neither the old Securities Commission, the Finance Markets Authority (FMA), the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) , nor the NZ Police arguably ‘did their job’ and charged yourself or Don Brash.

    John Banks, you are now the Minister of Regulatory Reform, yet four different ‘regulatory’ bodies failed to act against you, someone, who arguably couldn’t properly run a Kiwisaver Scheme, yet now has a key Ministerial post and you are supposedly helping to run the country ‘perceived’ to be the ‘least corrupt in the world’

    (Copies of this correspondence are available on http://www.pennybright4epsom.org.nz )

    Have you been politically protected at the highest levels, because this minority National Government has only 59 out of 121 MPs, thus no mandate for assets sales, because there is not a majority of National MPs, so is dependent on your pivotal vote?

    Is this why NZ Prime Minister John Key is arguably continuing to ‘defend the indefensible’ and still express ‘confidence’ in you, although former MPs, Richard Worth and Pansy Wong appear to have lost his confidence over a lot less?

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’’
    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com
    http://www.pennybright4epsom.org.nz

  8. John Key has been treated unfairly, he has never claimed to be anything other than what he is and he has remained true to his values and continued to use the skills that made him successful. Simple research would have revealed to voters that they would get what they voted for and what is really behind the “friendly” smile:
    http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.co.nz/2012/05/merrill-lynch-leopards-spots-and-mr-key.html

  9. Draco T Bastard 9

    Fallacies of Composition Challenge America

    A fallacy of composition is defined as an illogical projection to an aggregate, based upon the assumption that a local relationship projects unchanged to the whole.

    Now, where do you think we see that…Oh, that’s right, economics as the micro is expanded to fit the macro.

    Remember that old quote? “If HP only knew what HP knows, we’d never have to worry about our stock price?” The same is even more true of an aggregate. If we would only take account in our policy discussions of what ALL PROFESSIONS know (instead of over-weighting the opinions of orthodox economists still stuck in fallacies of scale), then our nation wouldn’t have to worry about it’s fiat currency budget.

    An interesting thought but this is where it gets really interesting:

    Adaptive parsing is what democracies supposedly excel at, but at our present population scale, the democratic methods we once used simply aren’t propagating adequate outcomes. Every outmoded method demonstrates yet another fallacy of scale. Simple conclusion is that we need to reorganize, and do so faster.

    Bingo!
    Our present form of democracy is incapable of adapting to the changes needed in a modern society.

    • joe90 9.1

      Most interesting, ta DtB.

    • prism 9.2

      I had to look up fallacies of composition for meaning. This quote is interesting – we often hear it from right wing pollies and perhaps left I don’t know – the simplistic idea of running a country similar to some hypothetical household budget.

      In economics, the fallacy of composition takes on a special meaning. The fallacy occurs economist treats the economy as if it were a family or business. This leads to the assumption that a policy that will work for a business will work for the economy as a whole. When an economist assumes that what is good for a family is good for the economy, they fallacy of composition has occurred.

      http://www.kingwatch.co.nz/Christian_Political_Economy/fallacy_of_composition.htm

      • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1

        And that’s the entire theory of the free-market:- individuals making choices aggregated out to everyone and every business. The end result isn’t rational but irrational.

    • prism 9.3

      You are right DTB Our democratic system as shown by USA and UK no longer serve the people as was the modern ideal, they are self-serving. We sensibly brought in MMP but the pollies mainly NACT have gamed it to limit its viability. We wait in vain for better policies from each government. What do you suggest that would give us ‘leadership’ on the things we need like green sustainable business and future.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.3.1

        More and faster democracy but that will mean online voting.

        IMO, ‘leadership’ is an authoritarian concept and needs to be got rid of the same way that we got rid of the dictatorships. We don’t need leaders, we need an educated and informed populace making collective decisions about our society and economy (the real economy, not the delusional one that the capitalists and economists dreamed up).

        • prism 9.3.1.1

          DTB I’ve tried working in an educated collective and as a concept it is far from being satisfactory as a way of making decisions and running things. At the least facilitators are needed to channel and list thoughts, and ensure that they are talked through in the way that experience and learning in decision making teaches – ie how implemented, what effect and outcomes etc. Reliable experts in various fields should fill in the lack of knowledge and understanding and be subject to close questioning about their assertions at such meetings.

          The trouble with collectives is that they often don’t realise that they don’t know what they don’t know, they are full of ideals and ideas tested somewhere far away and not suitable for the present and the project considered, and they groupthink to the most attractive idea and sometimes the most attractive speaker. This could be how cults work or start.

          Sorry but if leaders are not to be had, then the collective need to be aware of the need to elect somebody to facilitate them and others to advise them. Such wisdom is not universal.
          Hence leaders, often of the wrong type. Sorry to raise my realities which might be different to yours but there it is – ideals eventually give way to practicalities. The future needs pragmatic idealists who are wonderful people, and our education should be slanted to help such people arise.

          • Draco T Bastard 9.3.1.1.1

            At the least facilitators are needed to channel and list thoughts, and ensure that they are talked through in the way that experience and learning in decision making teaches – ie how implemented, what effect and outcomes etc.

            Administration is needed, make no mistake about that but those administrators shouldn’t be the defined leaders. Ideas can, and should, come from anyone with the administrators/ministries then researching it to see if it’s viable or not and then getting back to the populace for the go ahead or telling the populace that it can’t be done.

          • KJT 9.3.1.1.2

            “The trouble with collectives is that they often don’t realise that they don’t know what they don’t know, they are full of ideals and ideas tested somewhere far away and not suitable for the present and the project considered, and they groupthink to the most attractive idea and sometimes the most attractive speaker. This could be how cults work or start.””

            A very good description of our Government.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      Well, that’s one thing this government has done that I agree with. Now lets hope that they do it right but:

      Boats will have to be reflagged with New Zealand flags which will require them to meet New Zealand standards and requirements.

      I suspect that they won’t. Re-flagging won’t get rid of the abuses that have caused the foreign owned vessels to be banned.

  10. John72 11

    Q. Oscar Wilde “Always love your enemys. Nothing annoys them so much.”

  11. Jackal 12

    The Wong connection

    Key has struck while the media iron is hot but factual evidence is sparse…

    • Oh jackal, you are so devoid of intellectual honesty and so full of partisan brouhaha that you seem completely unable to admit that Jones may in fact be in the wrong and could quite conceivably be guilty of something more corrupt than Banks is, instead focusing your attack on someone already tossed from parliament because they come from the rightwing side of the aisle. Come on man, show some backbone.

      Hugs and kisses,
      Your friend, TC

      • Carol 12.1.1

        I thought Jones should be stood down immediately. however, it sounds like Shearer has quizzed him pretty thoroughly on the role he played in OKing that guy’s immigration. So I will now wait and see how things play out.

        Banks, on the other hand, looks a lot more dodgy to me.

      • Jackal 12.1.2

        As usual your summery is irrelevant The Contrarian. Firstly I’ve already blogged about Jones needing to front, and I’m not saying that he’s off the hook… I simply think Yan was mainly talking about Pansy Wong when he said he had friends in high places. The Fairfax article also fails to report on some important facts, like for instance that what was implied to have been recently said in court of law actually happened four years ago. I guess such things are a bit too much for your wee mind to comprehend.

        You’re not my friend btw The Conformist. Stop being a smarmy git!

        • TheContrarian 12.1.2.1

          Why can’t we be friends? I hold no ill will towards you.

          “I simply think Yan was mainly talking about Pansy Wong when he said he had friends in high places”

          So you think Yan meant an opposition MP with no real power in his citizenship case was in a higher place than the associate immigration minister who actually had some sway in his application and approved it? Wow.

          • Jackal 12.1.2.1.1

            Why can’t we be friends you ask… because I think you’re a smarmy git!

            So you think Yan meant an opposition MP with no real power in his citizenship case was in a higher place than the associate immigration minister who actually had some sway in his application and approved it? Wow.

            You might note that Yan’s file was transfered to Jones because he apparently did not have a conflict of interest, and there has been no evidence to link Jones’ approval of that file to any kind of favours. I think Yan was likely to be talking about Wong at the time. But I guess we’ll have to just wait and see.

            • TheContrarian 12.1.2.1.1.1

              “Why can’t we be friends you ask… because I think you’re a smarmy git!” Well, that is a shame.

              Anyway, so even though Pansy Wong was in no position of power, Jones was associate immigration minister and signed off on the application and Wong had no power to supersede DIA recommendation you still believe Yan thought Wong was the higher placed friend. Wow. That takes some reaching. Well done – there is no way I could mentally stretch like that.

              I am proud that we are friends.

              • Jackal

                I didn’t say Wong was the higher placed friend (read the post again), I said it is likely that Yan was talking about Wong. You are asking me to know what was in Yans mind when he made the statement pre 2008, which is ridiculous! You can speculate until the cows come home that he was talking about Jones, I’ve provided some information as to why it was likely Wong. It’s my opinion… don’t start telling me I’m not allowed an opinion again The Controlfreak!

                • You can have an opinion, sure. I don’t think anyone ever suggested you couldn’t – least of all me.

                  But in a public medium you can expect people to query your opinion. And your opinion seems rather divorced from reality. Luckily we can investigate and discuss opinions on this “Open Mike” forum.

                  • Jackal

                    You seem to have a bit of memory loss there The Amnesiac.

                    Can you tell me when exactly Yan made his statement concerning friends in high places, and whether Jones was even in a position to influence the outcome when that statement was made? Saying that Yan was categorically talking about Jones when there is no evidence of this is spurious indeed!

                    • “whether Jones was even in a position to influence the outcome when that statement was made?”

                      Kinda irrelevant when it was Jones that OKed the citizenship, no? But don’t worry, I am sure in the end you’ll be proven right and Pansy Wong will be at fault.

                      Hey, when that no doubt happens, I’ll be happy to admit I was wrong. Just as I am sure you’ll be happy to admit you backed the wrong horse too….Jacky my friend.

                    • Carol

                      I thought the “friends in high places” might have been the minister who knew Yan, claimed conflict of interest”, and so passed the case onto Jones.

                      Jones told 3 News tonight why he decided to allow Yan into the country:

                      http://www.3news.co.nz/MP-told-immigrant-would-be-jailed-and-executed/tabid/1607/articleID/255183/Default.aspx

                      Mr Jones says he was told that Mr Yan would be “jailed, executed and his organs harvested” if he was sent back to China.

                      “That to me comprised grounds for a humanitarian decision,” Mr Jones says.

                      He confirmed those were the words used to describe the situation.

                      “When a Government official in a minister’s office says such a thing so graphic that I actually wrote it down.”

                      Mr Jones says he has the words written on file.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Just in case anyone is fooled by TheConservative’s desperate need for friends, here’s what he really thinks of posters here:
                       
                      “The Standard is a hideous place, filled with vacuous scumbags who just want to act like dictators. Worthless cretins”
                       

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You mean the Contrarian?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Aye.

                    • The funniest thing about me being “a conservative/tory/right-winger” is that using the same metric Draco T Bastard uses to prove Labour is heading right-wing places me firmly on the left.

                      Not to mention the whole “He disagree’s with me therefore he must be a conservative” thing is completely ridiculous but, nevermind. As I said, it’s easier for you trolls to label those you don’t like instead of engaging.  

                    • Jackal

                      The real question is why you would want to engage with people who you think are “worthless cretins?”

                    • felix

                      People have tried to engage you in serious discussion, TC. Would you like me to link to an example of what you do in such situations?

                    • @Felix – that was a general statement based on the fact that I am continually accused of being a tory or conservative as a pejorative when my political position are generally middle of the road and left of centre in most cases.

                    • felix

                      And mine was a generalised statement that for all your bluster you run a mile from serious discussion.

                      And further that in spite of the general nature of the observation I’m happy to provide specific examples if required.

  12. Vicky32 13

    Based on my experience in the past few days is this:
     
    Workfare, coming to a WINZ office near you? I have received letters (plural) summoning me to ‘job search seminars’ (plural) and so I rang the call centre 3 times today. As far as I have been able to find out, the first of them is about a ‘business initiative’ programme – I have already been signed up, and I am told that it starts 4th June, which is afaik, Queens Birthday!
    The call centre woman said something about ‘call centres and customer service’, which actually makes sense of it starting on a public holiday – it’s telemarketing and they want to catch people at home! This is called a ‘training programme, with the ‘company’ promising a job at the end of it. I want to know how voluntary it will actually be, and what the nature of the ‘training’ is? I will supply more information when I have it (the day after tomorrow – the seminar is tomorrow at 14.00, and no doubt it will run until 17.00), but it is very worrying that I have already been signed up to it. When I finally got in touch with someone at the actual WINZ office, she just kept making with the threats… you must attend, it’s your obligation, nothing else matters etc.”
    I suspect it’s all about getting the numbers right, pre-Budget, that is, if Petulant Bean can come up with some number of ‘long-term unemployed’ who are now in ‘training’ it will look good for the public. I told the woman that I had been told a few months ago by XXXXXXX X (name withheld) that I could be ‘self monitoring’ or whatever the phrase was, and she said “if you were capable of that, you’d have got a job by now’. I reminded her that even PB had admitted that there are not enough job, and her only answer was to reiterate the threats. “Benefit cancelled if you don’t turn up to the seminars” etc…

    • Carol 13.1

      For goodness sake – it’s bad enough that I keep getting pestered by telemarketers (trying to get an unlisted number), now they are going to force the unemployed to join those pests? Really?

      I’d rather my taxes paid people the dole, than they are made to join such make-work schemes for the marketing parasites!

      • Vicky32 13.1.1

        now they are going to force the unemployed to join those pests? Really?

        So it seems at the moment… in the guise of “training”… the thing is, that I’ve worked in call centres as a telemarketer on and off for decades! I don’t need any “training”, I have done it often and recently enough to know that I am woefully bad at the marketing part of it! (My most recent stint was about 13 months ago, maybe that’s why I have been selected for this?)

    • Uturn 13.2

      Well if it’s turn up or die and you can get there without serious hardship, why not turn up… just until the soonest convenience after they take “roll”, then leave? If it’s boxes they want ticked rather than effective results, they won’t care. Another alternative is to be so utterly difficult to handle, but in the politest way, of course, that you prove their idiotic idea that you are long-term unemployable. Ask really dense questions, whistle a lot, stutter on the phone; phrase your nice CSR persona as if you were a stoic peasant or can’t tell the difference between private thoughts and speaking publicly. Hey, if they ignorantly go round telling people what they are, why not give it to them? Consider it an afternoon of acting class. Keep acting till they drop you off the list.

      • Vicky32 13.2.1

        If it’s boxes they want ticked rather than effective results, they won’t care. Another alternative is to be so utterly difficult to handle, but in the politest way, of course, that you prove their idiotic idea that you are long-term unemployable. Ask really dense questions, whistle a lot, stutter on the phone; phrase your nice CSR persona as if you were a stoic peasant or can’t tell the difference between private thoughts and speaking publicly.

        Yes, that would actually be fun! :D The last time I had to go into the office, after a long-term teaching stint, and she had a notice up on the whiteboard for a ‘recruitment seminar’ for the very people I’d been working for from the end of 2010 to January 2011! I remarked then that I’d already worked for them – I suppose she’s forgotten, as I suspect tomorrow is about ‘recruiting’ for them!  (They can’t keep staff, no wonder they’re recruiting beneficiaries! Telemarketing for minimum wage – no thanks!)

        • Uturn 13.2.1.1

          As a teacher you’ll have years of experience in how to drive instructors nuts. They don’t stand a chance.

          • KJT 13.2.1.1.1

            Latest in the saga of the two teenage boys I am supporting.

            One was on the verge of finally starting a job, when he was charged for being in the same car as a boy racer. He was not driving and obviously terrified. Still lost his job though.

            Had two week stand down. Now 4 weeks later he finally got to see a WINZ officer.

            They turn up for appointments and are told to get in a line. If they do not get to the end of the line by their appointment time they have to make another appointment. It doesn’t matter if they haven’t even got the bus fare to get there numerous times. If they cannot attend any of the silly seminars for any reason, even doctors or court appointments, the dole is refused.

            The other one finally got to see a WINZ officer, but now has to go through the whole rigmarole again. He was on the independent youth benefit. Instead of the sensible thing, reviewing his case at 18, he has to have a stand-down and re-apply for the dole. And then prove he has applied for at least 6 non-existent jobs a week. He should really be on a sickness or invalids benefit. He needs treatment for depression before he can work.

            When they go in almost everything they are entitled to is refused, unless an adult goes with them.

            It is very noticeable how most WINZ staffers think they are working for the Gestapo, since NACT got in.

            • Jackal 13.2.1.1.1.1

              Young people get a hard time of it these days. I sometimes wonder if the rightwing realise the detrimental impact of their policies. It’s all part of that Neo-Liberal agenda you wrote about… great article btw.

            • RedLogix 13.2.1.1.1.2

              God awful dehumanising treatment KJT. Makes my teeth grind to read it.

              My younger brother who is deaf-blind and has thus had to deal with welfare in one form or another most of his adult life once said he always knew when National was in power…. by the way he got treated by WINZ.

            • Carol 13.2.1.1.1.3

              This is disgraceful, on the part of WINZ and the government that set them on that route. What a way for young people to be starting out on their adult life!

              I can relate to that description of some WINZ staff being like Gestapo.

              I have had that kind of feeling about ACC staffers, when talking about having the requests for more physio for me rejected. And those requests came from my physio & specialist. But they made me feel like I had done something wrong – like trying to get something I wasn’t entitled to.

              But I persevered and protested, and in the end some ACC people that could authorise it, agreed I needed further help with a severe injury and approved more physio for me.

              It’s like they are not there to help people who need help, but to give as little help to people as they can get away with.

            • Nick 13.2.1.1.1.4

              I am appalled but not surprised. There are about a third of under 25s out of work, and we treat them as the blame. Shame on WINZ staff colluding with the NACT arseholes. Good luck with the boys.

            • fatty 13.2.1.1.1.5

              That sux KJT…

              “When they go in almost everything they are entitled to is refused, unless an adult goes with them.”

              That is the answer…nobody should go into WINZ on their own if at all possible. Two VS one and the WINZ workers seem to lose their superiority complex pretty quickly. I always suggest people go in with another person, even if the second person is not skilled or knowledgeable about WINZ.

            • Vicky32 13.2.1.1.1.6

              When they go in almost everything they are entitled to is refused, unless an adult goes with them.

              At least they have you on their side, KJT, good on you for caring for them!
              I thought I had a bad time with WINZ, but it sounds as if these boys have it much worse! I suppose they’d  suffer even more  if they tried the sarcasm and dumb insolence I often resort to!

          • Vicky32 13.2.1.1.2

            As a teacher you’ll have years of experience in how to drive instructors nuts. They don’t stand a chance.

            She started by insisting that it was all ‘voluntary’, but those who didn’t ‘fill out’ the form she handed around, were herded off somewhere for a ‘discussion’…
            Turns out her main desires were for bar staff, security guards and telemarketers.
            No, I have to wait to hear from her…

        • John72 13.2.1.2

          Tele marketing. Listen polietly, show some interest, and then try to sell them something. I am selling Christianity.

  13. felix 15

    Haha good on Dr Russel Norman calling Key a chicken in the house today. Totally worth losing a question for.

    He has gone up a few points in my estimation, now if he would just hurry up and grow a beard…

  14. I don’t like the name “Zero” Budget
    Here are some better suggestions…(journalists pay attention, you will need these words for your pieces).
     

    The Monotone Budget    –    The Inadequate Budget
    The phoned-in Budget    –    The Ineffectual Budget
    The Lame Budget    –    The Dead-Cat-Bounce Budget
    The Turning-a-Blind-Eye Budget    –    The Dumb Budget
    The “Blah Blah Blah” Budget
    – you get the idea.
     
    Here are some more suggestions….
    paltry, weak, ailing, shabby, uninspired, characterless, dishwater, stagnant, stale, dumb, do nothing, lazy…

    Suggest your own titles…
    p.s. we have been here before Link

    • Treetop 16.1

      The directionless budget
      The desperate budget
      The lean and mean budget
      The no brighter future budget
      The run out of ideas budget
      The we got the mandate budget
      The go to Aussie budget

  15. Murray Olsen 17

    I suspect the four year leeway given to the foreign vessels is so that Key can get NZ workers’ rights and conditions to somewhere pretty close to what’s happening on those boats anyway.

  16. Colonial Viper 18

    Unemployed job seekers work in hospitals for free

    The UK Tories further develop the start of workfare, and job insecurity for employed labourer in hospitals just skyrocketed.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2012/may/21/unpaid-jobseekers-deliver-patient-care?INTCMP=SRCH

    • Carol 18.1

      Next they’ll be re-opening the Workhouses!

    • Vicky32 18.2

      Unemployed job seekers work in hospitals for free

      Oh my giddy aunt! Could there be a worse place for workfare? Those are HCA jobs, and in Welly hospital, HCAs are being laid off, and  my son for one is quite distressed about that. (One of them was a girlfriend) He suggested I become an HCA, and I enquired – a 6 month course at Unitec is required here, it’s not exactly work that can be done with no training or even 2 weeks… In fact, on L’s ward, it’s work that can be quite distressing.

  17. John72 19

    If there is light in the soul, there will be beauty in the person. If there is beauty in the person, there will be harmony in the house. If there is harmony in the house, there will be order in the nation. If there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world. (Chinese Proverb)

  18. fatty 20

    If you are from Christchurch, have visited lately or are fed up with the way Christchurch is rebuilding itself as a corporate wasteland…then please act on this.

    Gapfiller are the best thing to emerge in post quake Christchurch. Life is shit down here. They make it better. This is copied from their facebook page;

    We need your help. We are in the process of applying for some funding to keep filling gaps in ChCh. If you have appreciated some of our gap filling work would you mind writing a brief letter of support for us? Why do you like Gap Filler’s work? What projects have you most enjoyed? Why is it important for you and for ChCh? Why is creating opportunities for people to express their creativity so necessary? If you’ve been involved in a project; what did it do for you? You get the idea. THANK YOU. Please email letters to fillthegap@gapfiller.org.nz by 28 May.
    thanks

    Please support these people!
    http://www.gapfiller.org.nz/
    http://www.facebook.com/GapFiller

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    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Auckland staff call for Living Wage
    The Living Wage Network held a rally and barbecue this week calling on the University of Auckland to become first New Zealand’s Living Wage university, by paying all staff, both directly employed and contracted staff, a living wage of $18.80...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Otago debates one off lump sum
    The University of Otago has not offered its staff a pay rise on their rates at collective agreement negotiations, opting instead to offer a one-off lump sum of $1000, which will not go ‘on the rates’. TEU members at the...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • Speaker: David Fisher: The OIA arms race
    Good afternoon everyone. I am David Fisher, a reporter with the New Zealand Herald. I have worked as a journalist for 25 years, mainly in New Zealand but across a number of other countries.I think there's some value before I...
    Public Address | 22-10
  • Employment law first act of new government
    As the prime minister promised, his government has rushed to push through its Employment Relations Amendment Bill as one of its very first actions this week. The bill, which union members and workers have actively opposed for the last year,...
    Tertiary Education Union | 22-10
  • 7 inspiring stories of communities taking action for climate
    Stories of communities taking action for the climate and refusing to accept the plans of polluting fossil fuel companies are happening more and more. Here are just a few inspiring climate acts of courage taken by doctors, villagers, students, farmers,...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-10
  • Blowin’ in the wind
    Wind power has a pivotal role to play in the world's energy supply over the next few years. By providing huge amounts of clean, affordable power, it can buy us time in the fight against global warming while revolutions in...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-10
  • Wanted: more fertiliser and horse manure
    Equality enriches the soil, just like manure, but a lot less stinky (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think about why they’re On The Left, and what the next three years holds for the left, the...
    On the Left | 22-10
  • PM gets it right about Auckland, mostly
    Prime Minister John Key is dead right when he said: First home buyers in Auckland might have to consider an apartment in order to get onto the property ladder, Prime Minister John Key says. After all, the locational efficiencies of...
    Transport Blog | 22-10
  • Questions and Answers – October 23
    Press Release – Office of the Clerk Economic ProgrammePolicies 1. JAMI-LEE ROSS (NationalBotany) to the Minister of Finance : What measures is the Government taking to help the New Zealand economy become more productive and competitive?QUESTIONS TO MINISTERS Economic Programme—Policies...
    Its our future | 22-10
  • John Key’s Multiple Identities
    Question to the Prime MinisterRussel Norman: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he txted him?Prime Minister: None in my capacity as Prime Minister.John Key...
    Local Bodies | 22-10
  • Where is the Middle?
    When Labour decides who will be the next leader, it is of interest to all of us involved in politics. After all the person chosen could be New Zealand's next Prime Minister. So the debate on the nature of the...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • Labour Needs A Civil Union With The Greens
    Much has been written about where Labour needs to go from here. One issue which doesn’t seem to have generated much interest is what do they do with the Greens?...
    Pundit | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Lau...
    The People's Flag Is ... Mint Green? Grant Robertson and Jacinda Ardern (whom Twitter immediately dubbed Gracinda) pose in Mint Green for one of the glossy women's magazines. In a non-revolutionary era, superficial is about as deep as it gets. BIKERS?...
    Bowalley Road | 22-10
  • Auckland’s disturbing panopticon
    Earlier in the month, we learned that Auckland was planning to install a creepy panopticon, complete with ANPR and facial recognition, for vague and undefinied purposes. This produced a flurry of OIA requests via FYI, and one of them (for...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • How to Sell a House: Free Advice from a couple of experts. (Self-Described!...
      In the 32 years that Judy and I have been together we have bought and sold quite a few houses. Six years is the longest we  lived in any one of those houses.  Our friends regard us as gypsies. The...
    Brian Edwards | 22-10
  • Judith Collins’ two-tier OIA service
    Back in August, we learned that sewerblogger Cameron Slater was receiving extraordinary OIA service from then-Minister of Justice Judith Collins, in one case receiving a response to a request within 37 minutes. But it wasn't just extraordinary for its speed;...
    No Right Turn | 22-10
  • Fluoridation – a racist conspiracy?
    Political activists campaigning on health issues often resort to scaremongering. This can be dangerous – especially when their stories have no real basis but rely on selective and distorted information. Paul Connett’s Fluoride Action Network (FAN) often resorts to this sort of scaremongering. Now...
    Open Parachute | 22-10
  • What have people in Africa been doing since the Ebola outbreak started?
    by Andy Warren In a word – dying.  But not from Ebola. According to WHO data it looks like this: However, fear and anxiety are the sexiest ingredients of any story today – rather than boring facts. Ebola fits perfectly...
    Redline | 22-10
  • How low can you go? Mining the depths
    The company says there will be economic benefits, which the EEZ Act says the EPA must consider, but even these benefits are in doubt. The royalties while not set will be tiny, the profits will flow offshore, and whatever phosphate...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Government loses the affordable housing race
    Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks he can deliver affordable housing to Cantabrians on his current figures, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Minister’s announcement that the Government will build 237 new homes, most of which will...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Labour’s thoughts with Canadians
    Labour has offered its sympathies to the family and friends of the Canadian soldier who died in what appears to be a premeditated and unprovoked attack while standing at guard at the Ottawa National War Memorial. “Our thoughts are also...
    Labour | 23-10
  • What next for TVNZ? Outsourcing the news?
    Television New Zealand’s decision to outsource Māori and Pacific programming is a real blow to the notion that our state broadcaster is a public broadcaster, says Labour. “CEO Kevin Kenrick has said today that TVNZ has ‘a very long and...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Green Party expresses sympathy for Canadian shooting victims
    The Green Party expressed its solidarity with Canadians and the Canadian Parliament today, offering its sympathy for family and friends of the soldier killed in the attack. "Our thoughts are with all those caught up in the shooting in Canada...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Prime Minister must honour his promise
    It’s time for John Key to honour his promise to the Pike River families, says Labour MP Damien O’Connor.  “International mine experts have confirmed the view of WorkSafe New Zealand and many miners on the West Coast that it is...
    Labour | 22-10
  • EPA finds Shell Oil illegally drilled two wells
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded that Shell Todd Oil Services (STOS) broke the law by drilling two wells without a marine consent off the coast of Taranaki, the Green Party said today. The EPA conducted an inspection of...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    News that Aucklanders overtook Wellingtonians as the biggest train users is further evidence the Government needs to start work on the Auckland City Rail Link now, the Green Party said today.Auckland Transport said today that in the year to September,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Tea breaks gone by lunch time
    Labour is calling for an eleventh hour reprieve to employment law changes which could see thousands of Kiwi workers not covered by collective agreements lose their smoko breaks, its spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“How cynical that on the...
    Labour | 21-10
  • Metiria Turei to lead fight on feeding hungry children
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira.Mrs Turei, who leads the Green Party's work on child poverty, will pick up Mr...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Otago dairy farms fail basics
    I’m really privileged to take on the responsibility of the water portfolio. Eugenie Sage has done excellent work in this area in the last term of parliament and provided a great platform for further work. Last Parliament my bill to...
    Greens | 21-10
  • A mighty totara has fallen across the Tasman
    The New Zealand Labour Party expresses deep sadness at the death of former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, aged 98. “Today a great totara has fallen across the Tasman,” Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says....
    Labour | 21-10
  • Note to National: Must deliver on child poverty
    John Key and his Government will be held to its promise to make child poverty a priority, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “In its priority-setting speech today the Government stated child poverty would be a major focus for...
    Labour | 21-10
  • New Analysis show Government cut tertiary education funding
    New analysis done by the Green Party today shows the Government has made cuts to funding of tertiary education since 2008.Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that between 2009 and 2015 Government funding to Tertiary Institutions dropped by 4...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Students doing it tough as fees rise again
    The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Steven Joyce is shutting a generation...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Key misled New Zealand on Iraq deployment
      John Key was misleading New Zealanders prior to the election when he ruled out New Zealand special forces being deployed to Iraq, says Labour Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff.  “Post-election he has cynically disregarded that by saying that deployment of...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Church congratulated on child poverty stand
    The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.   “I think...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review.  He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban (see further biographical details here). The Review Team...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
  • RECOUNT JUST ONE STEP TO RESTORING CREDIBILITY
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA SEEKS TAI TOKERAU RECOUNT
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA to fight mass privatisation of state housing
    Announcements over the past 12 hours from the Minister responsible for Housing New Zealand, Bill English, and Minister for Social Housing, Paula Bennett, make clear the government’s intention for the mass privatisation of state housing. This comes during the middle...
    Mana | 07-10
  • Journalists have right to protect sources
    Legal authorities must respect the right of journalist Nicky Hager to protect the source of his material for his Dirty Politics book under Section 68 of the Evidence Act, Acting Labour Leader David Parker says. “It is crucial in an...
    Labour | 06-10
  • It shouldn’t take the Army to house the homeless
    National’s move to speed up its state house sell-off shows it is bankrupt of new ideas, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “National has been in office for six years, yet the housing crisis has got worse every month and...
    Labour | 06-10
  • Government must lift social housing supply, not shuffle the deck chairs
    National's decision to shift the state provision of housing to third parties is a smokescreen for the Government decreasing the provision of affordable housing, the Green Party said today."What National should be doing is increasing the supply of both social...
    Greens | 06-10
  • Election 2014 – the final count
    While we have to wait for the final booth level counts we can now see how well we did in the specials and look at electorate level data. First off special votes (and disallowed/recounted votes etc). There was a change...
    Greens | 06-10
  • We need more houses, not Ministers
    The Government’s decision to have three housing Ministers will create a dog’s breakfast of the portfolio and doesn’t bode well for fixing the country’s housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New Zealanders need more houses, not more Ministers....
    Labour | 05-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Discordant Chimes of Freedom: Why Labour has yet to be forgiven.
    WHY DOES THE ELECTORATE routinely punish Labour and the Greens for their alleged “political correctness” but not National? It just doesn’t seem fair. Consider, for example, the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 – the so-called “anti-smacking legislation” –...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Hosking or Henry – Which right wing crypto fascist clown do you want to w...
    So Mediaworks are finally going to make some actual money from their eye watering contract with Paul Henry by launching a new multi-platform Breakfast show over TV, Radio and internet. This is great news for Campbell Live who have dodged...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Families need more money to reduce child poverty
    Prime Minister John Key is mistaken to rule out extending the In Work Tax Credit to all poor children (The Nation 11th Oct) and Child Poverty Action Group challenges government advisors to come up with a more cost effective way...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Don’t shit on my dream
    Once were dreamers. A large man, walks down the road and, even from 200 yards there’s light showing between his big arms and bigger body. It’s as if he’s put tennis balls under his arms. Two parking wardens walk out...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Unanimously Call for Commissioner to Arm Police Full Time
    In the wake of a series of recent armed offender incidents, delegates to the Police Association Annual Conference today called unanimously on the Commissioner to arm Police full time....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Bank gets behind NZ wildlife icon with sizable donation
    It will be easier than ever this summer for holiday-markers to dip into their pockets to support the yellow-eyed penguin....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • WorkSafe report raises concerns about asbestos
    The union representing construction workers in the Canterbury rebuild is surprised at WorkSafe’s conclusion that no action needs to be taken against EQC and Fletcher EQR over asbestos exposure in Canterbury homes. “This report was an opportunity...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Union accuses SkyCity CEO of misleading public
    Unite Union has accused SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison of misleading the public over the cut in hours for a staff member who raised the issue at the company's AGM....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Last Hurrah on the Taxpayer
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Hone Harawira spent up $54,000 on the taxpayer in his last three months as an MP, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “It is absolutely disgraceful that an MP managed to rack...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Press statement in relation to search of Nicky Hager’s home
    On 2 October 2014, Nicky Hager's home in Wellington was searched by police. Mr Hager asserted that documents kept at his house were protected by privilege, including because they contained information that might identify confidential sources....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • The Sam Simon arrives into Auckland for new campaign
    This morning Sea Shepherd ship, the Sam Simon, arrived into Auckland harbour after its journey from Melbourne. The ship and its 25 crew from around the globe have come to New Zealand to source supplies and prepare for the upcoming...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Low inflation – time for meaningful wage increases
    With inflation low, now is a good time for workers to negotiate for pay increases that outstrip price rises and deliver real increases in wages and salaries. “For too many people, real pay increases have been missing for several years...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Auckland Rates Rises Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland ratepayers will face an average of a 29 percent rates increase, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “These rate rises show that Len Brown's spending is out of control.”...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Protest at New Plymouth Oil and Gas Expo
    About 30 protesters from Climate Justice Taranaki, Frack-free Kapiti, Te Uru Pounamu Action Group, Oil Free Wellington, Frack-free Manawatu and the east coast protested yesterday outside New Plymouth's biennial Oil and Gas Expo at the TSB Stadium....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • FMA warns consumers about cold-calling investment offers
    The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is warning New Zealand consumers and investors to be wary of cold-calls asking them to buy shares or put their money into offshore firms....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Comprehensive plan needed to end child poverty
    Child Poverty Action Group says it is vital the newly re-elected National government takes a planned and comprehensive approach to reducing child poverty in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Metiria Gets Feed the Kids
    Yesterday the Speaker of the House advised that he had accepted my request to transfer my Feed the Kids (Education (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Amendment) Bill to Metiria Turei of the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • DIA undercover investigation leads to jailing
    An undercover Internal Affairs investigation has led to a Hastings man being jailed for three and half years....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • RainbowYOUTH: 25 Years, 25 More
    In 1989, a group of young people in Auckland got together to form a support group for LGBTIQ youth. They called it Auckland Lesbian And Gay Youth (ALGY). After 25 years, several location changes, a name change, a brand reboot...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Outdated Oath shows need for Kiwi Head of State
    MPs are sworn in today and New Zealand Republic has written to MPs asking them to talk about why 121 New Zealanders elected by the people of New Zealand and standing in the New Zealand Parliament swear allegiance to another...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Council shouldn’t revenue grab from windfall valuations
    Auckland Council should state clearly they will not try and capture revenue as a result of the latest valuations and needs reminding that the City’s skyrocketing property values doesn’t change the level or cost of Council’s services, says...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • EPMU endorses Andrew Little for Labour leadership
    The National Executive of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union unanimously endorsed Andrew Little for the role of Labour leader, at a meeting held yesterday. “I have been speaking to our workplace delegates at forums across the country over...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • World Food Day promotes Agroecology not GE technology
    The UN has stated that agroecology is a major solution to feeding the world and caring for the earth....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Labour Names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Contenders for Labour leadership debate for first time
    The contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party debated for the first time on TV One’s Q+A programme today....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • UN Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme
    New Zealand's United Nations Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully
    Murray McCully says New Zealanders can expect a 5-10 year engagement against Islamic State if we join military action in Iraq and the government will take that “very carefully into account”...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
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