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Open mike 22/06/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 22nd, 2013 - 131 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…

131 comments on “Open mike 22/06/2013”

  1. karol 1

    Spies and lies continue to be a crucial issue. Kim Dotcom has made a submission to Parliament’s Intelligence and security commission hearing on the latest GCSB amendment Bill.

    However, Dotcom’s submission argues the legislation goes much further than clarifying the law and considerably expands the GCSB’s powers.

    Dotcom and van der Kolk say the illegal spying, unlawful raid on their Coatesville home and arrest represent “an extreme present day example of what can happen when the Government and intelligence agencies misuse or misunderstand their powers.”

    • freedom 1.1

      couldn’t help but notice a very important few words missing from the story . . along the lines of:

      ‘We, the journalists and editors tasked with reporting the news, have looked at his claims regarding the proposed laws and find that the concerns raised by Kim Dotcom are completely valid and that the eleventh hour additions to the bills open New Zealand to unfettered spying on all our activities’

    • Veutoviper 1.2

      KDC posted a link to the actual Mega submission on his Twitter stream on 14 June, prior to the extension of the submission deadline.

      I haven’t read it in full yet. but here is the link.

      http://t.co/L97zSyokKP

      NRT’s post on the Cabinet papers which were only released a day before the extended submission deadline is also worth reading.

      http://www.norightturn.blogspot.co.nz/2013/06/an-admission-from-gcsb.html

    • UglyTruth 1.3

      From interview of NSA whisteleblower Russ Tice

      “NSA is copying every domesic communiction in this country word for word, content in every phone conversation like the one we are laving now, every email”

      http://www.boilingfrogspost.com/2013/06/19/podcast-show-112-nsa-whistleblower-goes-on-record-reveals-new-information-names-culprits/

      • Jenny 1.4.1

        The latest news on Edward Snowden:

        WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has charged former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden with espionage and theft of government property in the NSA surveillance case….

        Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, welcomed the charges. “I’ve always thought this was a treasonous act,” he said in a statement. “I hope Hong Kong’s government will take him into custody and extradite him to the U.S.”

        Michael di Pretoro, a retired 30-year veteran with the FBI who served from 1990 to 1994 as the legal liaison officer at the American consulate in Hong Kong, said “relations between U.S. and Hong Kong law enforcement personnel are historically quite good.”

        “In my time, I felt the degree of cooperation was outstanding to the extent that I almost felt I was in an FBI field office,” said di Pretoro.

        The U.S. and Hong Kong cooperate on law enforcement matters and have a standing agreement on the surrender of fugitives.

        Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2013/06/21/5515373/justice-official-complaint-filed.html#storylink=cpy

        • ghostrider888 1.4.1.1

          may be a ‘ten-stretch’ according to that authority on all things American Pie, Bill O’Reilly, (just a little gallows humour). Still, the information is out now and will have influenced the terrorist communication and coordination strategy.

          • Colonial Viper 1.4.1.1.1

            If you look at how Osama was doing things for years ie using couriers with USB sticks, they were already on to it. Putin has also said that Snowden has revealed nothing that Russia did not already know. Which makes me think more and more that the systems are targeted at ordinary civilians, and low level unaware actors like private foreign companies, small governments etc

            The system also gives an amazing amount of blackmail leverage over internal US persons. Everyone from business leaders to congressmen to journalists.

            • ghostrider888 1.4.1.1.1.1

              Putin appears at the top of his game, at the G8 etc; Key, a “low-level unaware actor” if there ever was, on the world stage, has been noticeably absent from the national MSM coverage these past days; C/T U/S PR management at play some more maybe.

  2. EPIX presents the World Premiere Original Documentary, TWA FLIGHT 800, a thought-provoking ninety-minute documentary about the ill-fated Trans World Airline Flight 800 to Paris, France, which exploded on July 17, 1996 just 12 minutes after takeoff from JFK International Airport, killing all 230 people on board. The special features six former members of the official crash investigation breaking their silence to refute the officially proposed cause of the jetliner’s demise and reveal how the investigation was systematically undermined. In commemoration of the 17th anniversary of the traumatic event, TWA FLIGHT 800 premieres Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at 8PM ET.

    http://press.epixhd.com/programming/twa-flight-800/

    • Tim 2.1

      Interesting – one of those NatGeo “Seconds from Disaster” ‘sensationals’ is screening as we comment (re TWA800).

    • Paul 2.2

      The cover up surrounding this flight was documented in the excellent film critiquing the MSM called ‘Shadows of Liberty.’
      Was on at Documentary Edge Festival in Auckland this year.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.1

        Don’t tell me, yet another conspiracy theory proving to be a conspiracy fact a few years down the track

        • vto 2.2.1.1

          Oh how surprising. I posted just below that authority has proved time and time again that it cannot be trusted.

          Iraq apparently had weapons of mass destruction – yeah right

          Syria has apparently used chemical weapons – yeah right (and aint it funny how that has been quietly dropped ……. it is almost like the US govt has finally realised that it no longer has any credibility).

          JFK got shot by a lone gunman – yeah right.

          John Key doesn’t know what his blind trust invests in – yeah right.

          John Key didn’t know about Kim Dotcom – yeah right.

          it
          goes
          on
          and
          on

          and now Brazil is imploding over the populace’s calling bullshit on authority and its lies lies lies lies lies.

          these fires of protest are going to all link up soon.

          • UglyTruth 2.2.1.1.1

            Oh how surprising. I posted just below that authority has proved time and time again that it cannot be trusted.

            I agree that trust has to be earned, but Obama’s authority (like that of many political administrations) is based mostly on the consent of the governed. You can’t legitimately argue with de jure authority, it’s just that most authority is simply assumed rather than actually being de jure.

        • Polish Pride 2.2.1.2

          Don’t you think that with the frequency that this seems to occur add to that other misinformation put out by the govts of the day that there is a problem. Sure if it happens once, maybe even twice perhaps it can slide. But when it happens so often it is systemic it is a bit disingenuous to attempt to fob it off as ….”yet another conspiracy theory proving to be yet conspiracy fact.
          If I have misinterpreted the intended tone of your post you have my apology in advance.

  3. karol 3

    Those sticky labels on fruit certainly are a nuisance. But what will be the impact on the fruit content of laser marks replacing the sticky labels?

    In the EU though they may soon be replaced by tattoos laser-printed on the skin. The lasered marks can contain barcodes or fruit information, while iron oxides and hydroxides can be used in the process to enhance the contrast of the mark.

    Previously laser marks had been banned in the EU.

    The amended EU regulations now allows the use of iron oxides, hydroxides, hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose and polysorbates for marking certain fruits.

    These are all examples of so called E-numbers and can be used to create a contrast between the laser marking and the fruit’s skin.

    Iron oxides and hyrdoxides are know as E172.

    They are natural minerals commercially made from iron powder which can be yellow, red, orange, brown or black in colour.

    Manufactured by treating a solution of ferrous sulphate or chloride with an alkali and oxidising the precipitate in hot air. As the iron present in these oxides is in the ferric form it is not very actively available to body tissues.

    E172 can be found in cake and dessert mixes, meat paste, salmon and shrimp paste.

    They are only used for coating the surfaces of things but are safe to eat because they are not absorbed into the body.

    More info on the chemicals, all of which goes over my head, at the link above.

    So, over to the scientists……

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      Since the 1970s British scientists, health officials and the Government dismissed claims from parents and activists that some food colourings were adversely affecting children’s behaviour, causing ADHD like symptoms. Reassurances came back that there was no problem and that they were safe.

      In 2008 it was officially recommended that those food colours no longer be used, for food safety reasons.

      So that only took 4 decades for the scientists and the authorities to work out.

      • vto 3.1.1

        It is simply foolish to trust ‘authority’. Here are some other examples of things that were ‘safe’.

        245T was safe.

        DDT was safe.

        Formaldehyde was safe.

        Atomic testing was safe-ish.

        Asbestos was safe.

        Lead paint was safe.

        Today’s treated timber which goes into the walls of your family’s bedrooms is apparently safe – yeah right.

        Today’s margarine is apparently safe – yeah right.

        Today’s corporate perfect foods are apparently safe – yeah right.

        please add to the list -

        • muzza 3.1.1.1

          Not forgetting one of the most notorious of E- Numbers – E951

          The slow kill has been in effect a very long time, for those who believe many of the effects, were possibly unknown. In the case of E951, the negative effects were known, and the FDA cleared it anyway, with a little help from Donald Rumsfeld!

        • Lanthanide 3.1.1.2

          Compare your short list against all of the other products and materials that we use which are claimed to be safe and have no evidence suggesting otherwise.

          I think all-in-all, we do a very good job, and sometimes make mistakes.

          • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.2.1

            +1

            We’re human, not gods. Still, there is that corruption that I just mentioned that needs to be looked for and stopped.

            • vto 3.1.1.2.1.1

              Yes, partly right Lanth and DtB I suppose. It’s interesting that you word it thus though “… and have no evidence suggesting otherwise” implying that it isn’t a done deal on those items. Surely caution is the best approach in this arena, and you strike me as someone relatively cautious / conservative Lanthanide.

              And yes Draco, corruption and capitalism are the issues. Best example being the tobacco industry. I guess it depends where these products originate from and who benefits from it. Perhaps it is an age old case of following the money and that will point to how it should be evaluated. Your point below about credit ratings being another prime example.

              Still, caution would be the best approach I think, given the failings in the past.

              And current failings…

              1. Treated timber is supposed to be worked using masks and gloves etc yet how many builders do you see using those when cutting etc todays’ treated timber?

              2. I fear for people who have worked in demolition in Chch CBD and housing. A colleague had window dust (outer central city) tested and it came back solid asbestos. There are countless such stories. I suspect many cases will crop up in the future as a result of Chch demolition of asbestos.

              • Colonial Viper

                Yes, partly right Lanth and DtB I suppose.

                Lanth’s point is around the lines of 99.9% of the materials are safe, so it’s not a bad hit rate. However, you only need one bullet out of a thousand to find its mark in order to maim or kill you.

                And that we are constantly being shot at all the time.
                Also – evidence of lack of safety is hardly equivalent to “safe”.

                My current favourite: forget fluoride for now, they’ve known for a year or two that thermal receipt printouts contain endocrine disrupters, altering your body’s hormone regulation.

                Who here doesn’t hold on to one of those at least every other day?

                • Populuxe1

                  Then don’t lick your thermal receipt printouts

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Hope you don’t stick yours in your pants

                    • Populuxe1

                      Gosh no, I put it in my pocket, which last time I checked was lined (I trust your pockets are too – unless you have some weird public masterbation thing going on, and Bisphenol A (the endochrine disruptor in the paper) is mainly coming at you from food containers – I’d be more worried about that.

                    • weka

                      “and Bisphenol A (the endochrine disruptor in the paper) is mainly coming at you from food containers – I’d be more worried about that.”

                      I just wrote about the flaw in this kind of argument below. What we should be worried about is the total and cumulative effect of all exposures to BPA – plastic water bottles, plastics heated in microwaves, the shit on the inside of cans of food, kid’s plastic toys, recycled paper products etc. Plus the interaction of that BPA with other endocrine disruptors and other chemicals in the environment once they reach the human body (or any other living thing).

                      Even if you want to look only at the thermal printouts, consider that BPA is readily absorbed through the skin and or when we put our fingers in our mouths (or rub our eyes even). Then consider what happens to the BPA on the receipts when you are finished with them. It doesn’t just disappear by magic does it?

                  • Rogue Trooper

                    or under your pillow

                • muzza

                  Dealt with that one years ago, when it was blown it off as *conspiracy*. Touch only the white edges of receipts, car park tickets etc, and or dispose of them, with minimal skin contact, if any, wash hands regularly.

          • weka 3.1.1.2.2

            “Compare your short list against all of the other products and materials that we use which are claimed to be safe and have no evidence suggesting otherwise.

            I think all-in-all, we do a very good job, and sometimes make mistakes.”

            There is a fundamental flaw in how we use science, that’s the problem. It’s not that science per se, as a tool, is wrong or bad, it’s that humans are in charge of it and we’re dropping the ball badly in many areas. It’s not that we have a good or bad strike rate, it’s that much of what we do that causes damage is preventable, and some of the responsibility for that lies with science, particularly on the inability of some to integrate applied reductionism into a bigger picture ie it’s the world view that is the problem, not the tool itself.

            A couple of examples.

            In the fluoridation debate, someone mentioned that there was more danger from x, y, or z in our environment than from fluoridated water. That might be true from a reductionist perspective but from a holistic perspective, it’s the ingestion of fluoride, alongside x, y, z and all the other things (endocrine disruptors, the thousands of chemicals we are exposed to that our ancestors weren’t, the changes to diet, lifestyle, exercise patterns etc that differ radically from our evolutionary driven ancestors, exposure to new or increase radiations etc etc etc), and the culmulative effect of those exposures, that is the real issue. Epidemiology and meta analyses can give us some clues about these things, but reductionist science in general simply cannot cope with such a huge range of variables. So we have to develop other tools for understanding and making decisions within society.

            And it’s not that there is anything wrong with reductionist science, it’s really bloody useful. But it needs to be used within a holistic framework in order to be safe, and unfortunately too many people treat it as a belief system, and The One True Way belief system at that. That One True Way belief system prevents some people from seeing other ways of developing knowledge and generating wise practice.

            Another example is within medicine. Reductionist approaches are very useful in some areas, and worse than useless in others. It’s the lack of appreciation of the limits to the reductionist approach that is the problem. ‘Alternative’ medicine manages some areas much better, chronic illness in particular. Why is integrative medicine (mainstream and alternative) not the dominant paradigm yet? Because the power holders within science are unable to think outside their reductionist framework and thus speak from pretty ignorant places most of the time, blocking access (and yeah, because big pharma holds most of the research money).

            I find the idea that science gets it right most of the time, so we should be grateful and put up with the small amount of fuckups incredibly uninformed and thus a big contributor to the problem. The fuckups aren’t small in number, they’re massive, and many of them are avoidable. The real question then becomes why aren’t we avoiding them?

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.2.2.1

              Bloody hell :shock:

              :D

            • Rogue Trooper 3.1.1.2.2.2

              metaphysical, weka :-) you have travelled a long way.

            • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.2.2.3

              It’s not that science per se, as a tool, is wrong or bad, it’s that humans are in charge of it and we’re dropping the ball badly in many areas.

              What seems to be the problem is that some bright-spark comes up with an idea and the idea is put into practice before we know the full effects of said idea. Sometimes the full effects can’t be known until after they’ve been put into use.

              • weka

                True. So who gets to decide when/if something should be trialled on the general population or the environment before we know what the effects will be?

                I’m sure there are some instances where it’s warranted to go ahead. But they should be few. At the moment they are many, and they’re being driven by science, technology, capitalism and greedy people, not society or the communities they affect.

                • Colonial Viper

                  NZ only has 5 or 6 really pressing issues facing it. Mental health/suicide, unemployment and extreme income inequality, depletion of local resources and capabilities, dependence on imported energy etc.

                  Here’s the shocker: all these issues and more can be resolved using existing well known approaches, tools and technologies. If we actually wanted to. The rest of it is just all a smokescreen, distraction and delaying tactic.

                  So the painful truth is that for every big issue facing NZ the hold up isn’t technology. It is will power and leadership. Meanwhile people keep pretending that waiting to find a supply of unobtanium is going to resolve things.

                  • Arfamo

                    Meanwhile people keep pretending that waiting to find a supply of unobtanium is going to resolve things.

                    Many of the poorer citizens have already discovered they have a plentiful supply of it and are being bagged for not doing useful things with it, haven’t they? :)

            • McFlock 3.1.1.2.2.4

              That One True Way belief system prevents some people from seeing other ways of developing knowledge and generating wise practice.

              Fair enough. What other ways are there? E.g. to determine whether smoking causes cancer?

    • weka 3.2

      “But what will be the impact on the fruit content of laser marks replacing the sticky labels?”

      I don’t think that was the link you were intending :-)

  4. Draco T Bastard 4

    The Last Mystery of the Financial Crisis

    It’s not a stretch to say the whole financial industry revolves around the compass point of the absolutely safe AAA rating. But the financial crisis happened because AAA ratings stopped being something that had to be earned and turned into something that could be paid for.

    Corruption, corruption, corruption. Seems to be the modus operandi of capitalism.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      It’s the decline of civilisation.

      The impartial rule of law, standards of professionalism and conduct, due diligence and due process, are all gradually being discarded, with use of fear and power as replacements for good government (see NSA scandal).

      The few will desperately try and corner more and more of a shrinking pie.

      • UglyTruth 4.1.1

        It’s not really that due process has been discarded, rather it has been misconstrued to mean, in some cases, the opposite of what it originally meant. Personal status has nothing to do with the law of the land, it applies to men, not to persons.

        lex terre
        The law of the land. The common law, or the due course of the common law; the general law of the land. Equivalent to “due process of law”. In the strictest sense, trial by oath; the privilege of making oath. (Blacks 5th)

        Due process:
        Due process is the legal requirement that the state must respect all of the legal rights that are owed to a person. Due process balances the power of law of the land and protects the individual person from it. When a government harms a person without following the exact course of the law, this constitutes a due-process violation, which offends against the rule of law.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Due_process

        Civilization, as the implementation of of the civil law, has always been fundamentally incompatible with the law of the land as it applies to society.

  5. Draco T Bastard 5

    Telling Time with a Broken Clock

    “The more we learn about standardized testing, particularly in its high-stakes incarnation, the more likely we are to be appalled.” — Alfie Kohn

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 6.1

      You find strawpolls interesting and believe you can treat their contents as though they are “results”. Interesting.

  6. Draco T Bastard 7

    Don’t Blame the Work Force

    THE RESEARCH Peter Cappelli, a professor of management at the Wharton School, has noted sharply different opinions between corporate executives, who typically say that schools are failing to give workers the skills they need, and the people who actually do the hiring, who say the real obstacles are traditional ones like lack of on-the-job experience. In addition, when there are many more applicants than jobs, employers tend to impose overexacting criteria and then wait for the perfect match. They also offer tightfisted pay packages. What employers describe as talent shortages are often failures to agree on salary.

    US centric but I’d say that it applies in NZ just as much.

    • Rosetinted 7.1

      DTB
      I am sure that you are right. Constant complaints from employers about education levels. No willingness to provide training to the young, or the returning-to-work. What they want is babies born immediately programmed to carry out their work requirements.

      And as one listens to them or watches them from below in seniority it becomes clear that they are not at all capable and knowledgeable about the work that is in their own purview. How do they get picked in the first place and then remain circulating up in the air like some mobile-hanging business toy above the actual workfloor?

    • Populuxe1 7.2

      My big bugbear is HR departments stuffed with overpaid and unimaginative drones who know nothing about the actual requirements of the organisations they represent and work exclusively by ticking boxes.

      • Tim 7.2.1

        HR departments AND employment agencies.

        • Arfamo 7.2.1.1

          And government CEO’s & 2nd tier managers in a lot of cases, unfortunately.

        • chris73 7.2.1.2

          I second that on employment agencies…20-somethings who’ve generally never held a job in any of the positions they advertise making you fill out tests ad nauseum which mean nothing and then say “we’ll call you if anything comes up”

          Never gotten a job through an employment agency, its always been through the company itself

  7. Rogue Trooper 8

    The Ben Bernanke Effect:
    “Saner heads prevail”
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10892228
    -“consumer staples, health care and utilities”.
    Fed Plan rattles investors
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10892158
    (MRP closed at $2.20).

    The kiwi $ has dropped around 10c / US since April
    NZX- 1% drop two days in a row.

    Global sharemarket “turmoil” around equities and commodities as Fed signals winding down of economic stimulus; 2 Trillion off global sharemarkets; wholesale sell-off of the NZ $ due inpart to the local markets relatively low liquidity, thus the money returns to where it came from.

    “Fear-on mode”; investors are not in agreement that the US economy is recovering.
    The end of cheap money? with increased expense to be price into future ‘economic recovery’ predictions / settings.the price of petrol and imported resources, including those required for the manufacturing sector.

    Now, what do the economists call it when interests rates are rising and the value of the dollar is decreasing…

    • vto 8.1

      This is so not surprising.

      The band-aids to stem the blood from the financial crisis were ……… just printed money. You know, paper. Nothing backing it. Could have been they were using toilet paper. Or photocopy paper. Or newspaper. What sort of paper was it? 80 gsm? 120 gsm? Was it lined or plain? Or – does it really matter? Paper is paper.

      I think I’ve just put some paper on the fire to spark it up again – ferocious flames and then smouldering black lumps of wood slowly cooling again. Fires and financial systems – the comparisons are uncanny.

      But who bloody cares? The printed paper firestorm has probably allowed enough of those in the know to get out of their holes and bolt to the hills …………. with real actual assets ……….. like power companies …….. wouldn’tcha just know it ………..

      • Rogue Trooper 8.1.1

        Yep, bond yields continue to climb in Europe,China attempting a controlled slow-down
        new export orders in both contracting; then there will be the further rise in insurance premiums as the re-insurers witness just how volatile the real climate is becoming, oh, and the cost of imports for the current, and future rebuilds.

      • ghostrider888 8.1.2

        bond yields continue to rise in Europe…

      • ghostrider888 8.1.3

        PRC attempting a controlled slow-down, new export orders contracting both there and in Europe

      • ghostrider888 8.1.4

        wholesale interest rates begin long-term climb

      • ghostrider888 8.1.5

        further volatility added to assets sales programme (Wgtn will be scratching their collective heads)

        • Rosetinted 8.1.5.1

          And what about the workers? What happens as a result – uh showers of dandruff?

          • ghostrider888 8.1.5.1.1

            some word is triggering ‘moderation’ so I’ll try for ‘bald patches’ :-D

      • ghostrider888 8.1.6

        new export orders contracting in both europe and our largest red-star neighbour

      • ghostrider888 8.1.7

        then there will be further rises in insurance premiums as re-insurers realise just how volatile the real climate is, and oh, the cost of imported components for the current, and future, rebuilds.

        • Colonial Viper 8.1.7.1

          Time to self insure

          State Insurance (v1.0)

          • ghostrider888 8.1.7.1.1

            an innovative dark Tabula rasa (Shearer was on the Hauraki drive show; voted for “Dust in The Wind) Do our ears deceive us?
            “It’s a little bit funny, this feeling inside
            I’m not one of those who can easily hide
            I don’t have much money, but boy if I did,
            I’d buy a big house where we both could live

            I know it’s not much, but it’s the best I can do
            My gift is my song, and this one’s for you”.

            • Rosetinted 8.1.7.1.1.1

              Thanks ghosty
              On behalf of me – I like your style and sentiments.

              • ghostrider888

                sorry about the identity crisis, had to pop into the nearest telephone box; yes, you demonstrate the same, Rosetinted; pop up an see me sometime, we’ll do brunch, sizzling.
                (comment#88) now, if I only had a gold coin for every time…

          • ghostrider888 8.1.7.1.2

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJEVkuNsEi0
            “I guess in the Wild West…”

  8. Rogue Trooper 9

    test

  9. Rogue Trooper 10

    in reply to vto (stuck in moderation)
    Yep, bond yields continue to climb in Europe, China is attempting a controlled slow-down, new export orders in both contracting, wholesale interest rates to begin a long-term climb, further volatility introduced to the asset sales programmes (Wgtn will be scratching their heads), then there will be further rises in insurance premiums as re-insurers witness just how volatile the real climate is becoming, oh and the costs of materials for the current, and future, rebuilds.

  10. ghostrider888 11

    will try that again;
    yes, bond yields continue to climb in Europe, China is attempting a controlled slow-down, new export orders in both contracting, wholesale -interest rates begin long-term climb, further volatility introduced to the asset-sales programmes (Wgtn will be scratching their collective heads), then there will be further rises in insurance premiums as re-insurers witness just how volatile the real climate is becoming, oh, and factor in the costs of imported materials for the current, and future, rebuilds.

  11. ghostrider888 12

    Indian monsoon flooding due to monsoons 4.5 times the normal levels

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      Yes but well within historical norms (please reference Noah), so nothing to see here.

  12. North 13

    Rerun of 3’s The Vote from Wednesday night.

    Rankin – The Weetbix Remedy – trotted out immediately after the Mangere Budgeting Centre guy challenges her to feed a family of 4 or 6 or whatever on $80 left in the weekly budget.

    Dangerous egocentric cow ! Marie Antoinette was at least honest about her black heartedness.

    We’re meant to accord Rankin, Tamaki, McCoskrie respect and credulity ??? They are disgraceful utterly self-focused antagonists of the poor. Ardent protagonists of the pitiably ill-treated haves, for Christ’s Sake.

    Two of three sucking God. The other one sucking the Conservative Party.

    • vto 13.1

      I thought that program had a major blundering fundamental flaw – and that was the actual question. It was very poorly formed.

      Of course parenting is the main determinant around how children are raised and child abuse.

      The issue should have been something along the lines “Has poverty caused a decline in parenting skills and therefore an increase in child abuse”, not an either-or between parenting and poverty. Major oversight imo.

      and it was interesting to see McCroskie in action – a man of no doubt good heart but woefully short on knowledge, wisdom, judgment and understanding. So woeful that it would seem he does his organisation more harm than good. Hone was brilliant – if I can get my head around some of Mana’s other policies then my vote would very nearly head their way.

      • weka 13.1.1

        The issue should have been something along the lines “Has poverty caused a decline in parenting skills and therefore an increase in child abuse”, not an either-or between parenting and poverty. Major oversight imo.

        I think a better question is :”Is poverty good for children?”

        As for has poverty caused a decline in parenting skills, well that’s one way to look at it but I think it’s more to do with capitalist and neoliberal agendas. Obviously colonisation has had a massive detrimental effect on Maori whanau, but it’s not just poverty in the sense of how much income a family has. It’s also the suppression of culture and language, the institutionalist racism and for much of post-contact history that huge denial of the validity of Te Ao Maori, the consequential PTSD, as well as the loss of economic bases and the pressures from Eurocentric capitalism that led to the move to cities and fragmenting of iwi and hapu. Given all that I think most Maori parents do really bloody well. That some families have been abandoned within that and are now being blamed is hypocritical.

        In regards to Pakeha parenting, well we were the ones that were sending our kids out to sweep chimneys around the time of colonisation, so let’s just say that our own history of child abuse is pretty long. If we want to look just at recentish history again it looks like the neoliberal agenda is central: my parents’ generation often raised kids within their home town and had the support of extended family, but my generation often raise kids away from such support. Women quite rightly got emancipation from marriage, but were denied financial emancipation in a meaningful way, so have often been left to raise kids on their own. The shift from one income households being viable to the necessity for two incomes has come from capitalism’s need to accommodate feminism without allowing it any real power to change the structure of society (which would undermine the greed ethos). The shift from people as citizens and part of a community to consumers is another huge change that’s happened in the last 3 or so decades and that, alongside neoliberal tools such as user pays, is engraining self-centred, anti-community attitudes in people that will take generations to reverse. Humans have raised children successfully within extended family groups within small communities for all of our evolution. To change that now is perilous but that’s what we are doing.

        Sure, individual parents have some choices within all that, but not as many as most think, and if we want to look at solutions as a way of prevention, then it doesn’t really work to look at individuals* – the problem and the solution are in the things that hinder or help successful families and individuals have limited control over those (some have no control).

        *except where they can be helped, and where they can tell us what isn’t working.

      • Saarbo 13.1.2

        agree!

    • millsy 13.2

      Weetbox for breakfast lunch and tea.I really dont think that it is really acceptable, or healthy to be feeding kids (or mum and dad for that matter) a subsistence diet of weetbix. No only would they go without the nutrients that are not in that food, it would be utterly demoralising to go for months, weeks and possibly years eating the same food, because you simply do not have the money to buy anything else. Plus people need something hot in their bellies as well. Not soggy weetbix.

      Ironically Rankin has being a single mother on a benefit and knows what it is like. Ironically how those who point the finger at the poor come from that background.

      • Colonial Viper 13.2.1

        Weetbox for breakfast lunch and tea.I really dont think that it is really acceptable, or healthy to be feeding kids (or mum and dad for that matter) a subsistence diet of weetbix. No only would they go without the nutrients that are not in that food, it would be utterly demoralising to go for months, weeks and possibly years eating the same food

        Concentration camp rations

        While John Key buys $3500 celebrity chef dinner tickets for him and his wife.

        Sounds fair to me, he’s earned it, and those poor people are clearly slackers and bludgers

        • unpcnzcougar 13.2.1.1

          I agree that the question was worded incorrectly. This is such a contentious issue. We know there are bad parents and we also know that people genuinely struggle. Until such time that as a country we can throw more money at the problem I really don’t know what the solution is. I do believe that society is judged by how we treat the less fortunate amongst us.

          Personally, I would like to see us mine and drill more to make the country more wealthy. This can be done on probably half percent of land throughout the whole country. The scaremongering that is done by the Greens and celebrities over this issue is not helpful. If anyone else has a better solution then we should be telling our MP’s. Taxing people more I don’t think will work. We already have 49% of income tax coming from 11% of individual tax payers

          What is not helpful are comments about Key as a rich prick etc. He is a self made man and there are many others like him. He didn’t grow up with a silver spoon in his mouth. Had he, then sure throw all the brickbats you like at him. Let’s not drag down people who are successful. Let’s encourage more – there are many out there especially in technology that are employing lots of kiwis. As history shows change is inevitable and we must learn to adapt and also to help people to adapt by encouraging a different skill set in workers and students to face the future.

          • Rogue Trooper 13.2.1.1.1

            15 years until the planet “cooks”
            http://www.nzherald.co.nz/environment/news/article.cfm?c_id=39&objectid=10891901
            -“NZers have a record of profound deafness”
            -“our emissions record since 1991 is one of the worst of developed countries”

            and in the Left / Green lane…

            “Public Transport must have priority over motorways” -Pat Baskett : Odds are against us.

            but you carry on.

          • Colonial Viper 13.2.1.1.2

            What is not helpful are comments about Key as a rich prick etc. He is a self made man and there are many others like him.

            He was a senior Bankster in a Bankster Organisation which made its money from skimming off from the productive parts of society and ordinary workers while leaving nothing but debt, leverage and fragility.

            Further, he had the benefit of growing up in a well made state house with inexpensive rentals, after NZ generously extended rights to stay to his foreign born Mum.

            Not sure what you consider “self made” in any of that.

            Personally, I would like to see us mine and drill more to make the country more wealthy.

            I’d only agree with you if NZ majority owned and operated all such new operations itself, and the majority of monies from the minerals stayed onshore.

            • Rosetinted 13.2.1.1.2.1

              I think Al Capone would be regarded as a self-made man by the money-worshippers who admire those with plenty and don’t pay much attention to who has been ripped off, sometimes literally, in getting it.

          • weka 13.2.1.1.3

            Personally, I would like to see us mine and drill more to make the country more wealthy. This can be done on probably half percent of land throughout the whole country. The scaremongering that is done by the Greens and celebrities over this issue is not helpful. If anyone else has a better solution then we should be telling our MP’s.

            NZ is a very wealthy country already. Our problem isn’t that we don’t have enough wealth, it’s that some people believe that the solution to some people having heaps of money and others having not enough is to steal from the environment and future generations. But tell me this, what happens when you’ve drilled and mined all the stuff in the earth, and you find that there are still poor people in NZ? What then?

            Taxing people more I don’t think will work. We already have 49% of income tax coming from 11% of individual tax payers

            You don’t have to tax ‘people’ more. You just have to rearrange how taxes are collected. Take GST off food, put a tax on financial transactions beyond basic households. Capital Gains Tax. There are lots of ways, and MPs already know what they are.

            • Colonial Viper 13.2.1.1.3.1

              “Taxing people more I don’t think will work. We already have 49% of income tax coming from 11% of individual tax payers”

              This is very likely a distortion of the truth. It ignores for instance what share of total income the top 11% take. I’m guessing it is way more than 49%. It also discounts all other taxes eg GST

              • Rosetinted

                meancat
                “Taxing people more I don’t think will work. We already have 49% of income tax coming from 11% of individual tax payers”

                You don’t show signs of understanding why a large proportion of income tax is coming from a small percentage of people. All your comment is slanted to imply that they are paying too much or more than their share.

                The reason why tax is not coming from a larger percentage is that the vast majority are getting low to medium incomes. Enough for some tax, enough to live on, but actually just enough to borrow on to fool themselves that they are doing OK. The reason why payments aren’t going to taxation to the government, but coming from below the living wage level to the interest payments on credit cards.

                And under present conditions NZ can never get wealthy, no matter how much is mined or extracted. Some people will get a job in the present, until the resources are all used up, all sent overseas for a quick buck. Then back to the future – moans and wails and do bloody nothing intelligent but look for some vulnerable people to blame and kick. Nice end for us with your type of recipe for the future.
                Hemlock pie, with added flavouring of essence of vicious circle.

          • Draco T Bastard 13.2.1.1.4

            Until such time that as a country we can throw more money at the problem I really don’t know what the solution is.

            The best solution is to get rid of money and go to full democracy with the understanding that the economy is there to support everyone and not just a few sociopaths.

            Personally, I would like to see us mine and drill more to make the country more wealthy.

            That would actually do the exact opposite. Once we’ve dug everything up then what do we do?

            He is a self made man…

            Yep, such a self-made man he had massive state subsidies growing up which he’s now taking away from the majority and giving to other rich pricks through tax cuts for the rich.

            There is no such thing as a self-mad man.

            Let’s not drag down people who are successful.

            Key is a successful parasite and needs to be removed from the host.

            • Rosetinted 13.2.1.1.4.1

              Did you know leeches have a valuable medical use, and I think suck up pus from a wound cleaning it out in an efficient and sterile way (if they are carefully grown to maturity in such conditions).
              Perhaps jonkey wasn’t raised and matured in a healthy environment and his poor abilities to serve the needs of the public is the result.

              I looked at Wikipedia. His father sounds as if he had principles. Key was born in 1961 but his father died in 1967, so he was only six then and very young for that loss.

              His father was an English immigrant and a veteran of the Spanish Civil War and World War II.[2] He died of a heart attack in 1967. Key and his two sisters were raised in a state house in the Christchurch suburb of Bryndwr, by his mother, an Austrian Jewish immigrant.[3][4]
              He attended Aorangi School, then Burnside High School, and earned a Bachelor of Commerce degree in accounting from the University of Canterbury in 1981.[3][5] He has attended management studies courses at Harvard University.[6]

              Notice that Key was from the lower south island. Could that be regarded as a National Party stronghold? Brownlee, English, Key with connections there?

          • millsy 13.2.1.1.5

            And what if the air and water is poisoned?

      • Rosetinted 13.2.2

        All single or solo mothers aren’t equal. With assistance from family it can be manageable with some energy and money left over to move up and off. Without helpful family and if you have the millstone of trying to mitigate the effects of some dorky sperm provider, or even a father who is uncommitted and won’t learn parenting skills and responsibilities, then difficulties multiply and crush.

        Weetbix has a use, just not the only thing – the pollies have to remember we aren’t horses. They like oats so do I but I need more than some greens, a carrot and an apple which are other things horses enjoy. The job of helping parents provide for their kids needs some money, and some guidance through parental education classes. How to do good things when you’re on a budget, and what kids need for growth, and how to use psychology to not give in to demands for chips, coloured drinks etc.

        • North 13.2.2.1

          It would be instructive I’m sure were the likes of Rankin and Tamaki required to actually verify their throwaway lines – “I came from a poor household……poverty……blah blah blah”.

          Completely punting but I suspect that such protestations are very frequently self-serving and self-congratulatory bullshit typical of the “I’m alright Jack” types who express them.

          Glossed to the point of dishonesty and devoid of any consideration of the relativities of the times in which they “endured” and “triumphed” over the “deprived” lives they claim.

          The social amorality to which they pontifically subscribe well accommodates scope for bullshit.

      • North 13.2.3

        The selfish neo-liberal cargo-cult coupled with the vainglorious and socially delinquent explains alot.

    • Rogue Trooper 13.3

      I did a write-up of The Vote, on Thursday’s , Child, “Throw me tomorrow”; just tragic some of the Talking Heads in this country; oh for a ‘forward roll’ to a Habermas, Foucault, Eco or Sakharov.

  13. ghostrider888 14

    Miko Peled : “The General’s Son”
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/saturday
    raised as a Zionist, now a Middle East peace activist
    -“the IDF, a terrorist organization”
    -“occupation; illegal, immoral and unsustainable”
    -“Israel has sowed the seeds of it’s own destruction”.

    • Rosetinted 14.1

      Ghosty
      This guy was good. Very sane and centred. And has a background of family fighting for Israel from the first. And who was similar to Eisenhower when he finished fighting, with some advice on future peaceful direction that wasn’t received.

      He doesn’t think it will be easy, only a few thousand supporters in Israel I thought I heard. Though numbers wanting change are growing.

  14. Polish Pride 15

    very good RBE vs Libertarianism discussion both systems talk about anti corporatism

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVUz6uUi9AU

  15. Rogue Trooper 16

    Mortgage rates begin rise
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10892222
    months earlier than predicted; hold on to your hats.

    • Rogue Trooper 17.1

      the East / West divide (as a working-class man living in Christchurch with Cosgove as an MP at the time, I found his views on many things difficult to empathise with, yet he can be dogged on the Nats).
      the ‘Shearer / Cunliffe cabals ride again.

  16. Rosetinted 18

    Is milk reconstituted from powder? I have heard that asked. The answer has always been no. But the actual practices are more complex. There is a lot of fiddling around connected with a minimum standard set for protein of 3% also one for fat. The milk varies during the year and so protein may need to be boosted with milk powder to reach the standard. But the standard has become the maximum too. So milk will be diluted so that protein rich milk is not being ‘wasted’ on the milk consumer.

    Look – listen. http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/thiswayup
    13:15 A listener’s question about how fresh our milk is, and what goes into it. With
    Dr David Everett.

  17. ghostrider888 19

    “Sleepwalking” into the largest refugee (humanitarian) crisis in our lifetime”
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10892194

    been following the spread of Mers, and the commentary of the international health community
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10892193
    “world’s single biggest threat to public health”

    Singapore chokes on record-breaking levels of smog from Sumatran forest-burning
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10892191
    (cloud-seeding to be attempted)

    “standing on the outside, looking in”
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10892192

    Porn Studies: is it all academic?
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10892165
    -30% of bandwidth
    -70% of men (must be a lot of fundies) and 30% of woman
    -average length of visit- a 12 minute quickie
    -90% of all content, verbally, and / or , physically, abusive towards women.

    • weka 19.1

      The porn studies article is very interesting, thanks.

      “-90% of all content, verbally, and / or , physically, abusive towards women.”

      Says it all really. And there are people that believe that that doesn’t have any effect in the real world.

  18. ghostrider888 20

    100.7 Bay FM- the underdog is coming off the leash
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7OyytKqYjkE
    “Well, any man with a microphone
    can tell you what he loves the most
    and you know why you love at all
    if you’re thinking of the Holy ghost
    (and every breath that is in your lungs
    is a tiny little gift to me).”

    • Te Reo Putake 20.1

      100.7 Bay FM is the coolest provincial station ever! Playlist sample here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EfFPzrHni20

      Any chance they’re going to put the station up on the web?

      • ghostrider888 20.1.1

        I think so too, from my wide experience of recorded music; not sure about the web, Hauraki have an interactive site. I find the music on both very motivating, contemplative at times and conducive to reflection.
        On the bay in general, imho, considering all the challenges facing NZ society and the climate, it is a very sensible place to choose to settle, particularly Hastings, generally sheltered from the extremes of both. :-D

      • ghostrider888 20.1.2

        btw, excellent track…when the music’s over, Reed flows on.

  19. Tim 21

    I’ve just had a bright idea (or maybe not – depending on your point of view).
    It was inspired by “the weekend social” thread, AND the fact that I just went through various call centres/options on ‘intelligent answer phone services’ that didn’t fit ANY condition that allowed me to report arcing on a lampost (with an identifiable & specific location; nearest street address/lampost number/phase colour et al). 20 minutes later – the responsible body was identified, and an assurance that within 24 hrs later – it would be fixed – we’ll see.

    Anyway @ lprent – how about a “funny thing happened on the way to the forum” thread.
    I could kick it off if you like?

    ……. “once upon a time, I was walking down Featherston St in Wellington when a Destiny Church ‘black shirt march’ was taking place. I was with a young fella that I had employed in the role as “Contract Systems Administrator”.

    Coming in the opposite direction (and wearing the obligatory “black T”) was a ‘young bloke’ my accomplis had once had sex with…..
    … perhaps he was now cured

    ..etc.

    OR…..

    (concerns what Lange once, in passing, talked about a moratorium on Whaling Season)

    Maybe not …. bit too much like “Truth”

  20. Colonial Viper 22

    British GCHQ brag its got more access to everyone’s internet data than the other members of the Five Eyes Agreement (incl NZ)

    They even reckon that they have better access than the US authorities. And they spy on the British public, thanks to numerous clever little loopholes. Given the timing, the previous UK Labour Govt must have been well on the scheme as well.

    It doesn’t seem to matter which side of the House they sit on.

    Can anyone spell global conspiracy theory.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/jun/21/gchq-cables-secret-world-communications-nsa

    • weka 22.1

      “Essentially, we have a process that allows us to select a small number of needles in a haystack. We are not looking at every piece of straw. There are certain triggers that allow you to discard or not examine a lot of data so you are just looking at needles. If you had the impression we are reading millions of emails, we are not. There is no intention in this whole programme to use it for looking at UK domestic traffic – British people talking to each other,” the source said.

      Yeah, right. Or maybe it’s just NZ that does that.

      Hang on, “There is no intention in this whole programme at this stage to use it for looking at UK domestic traffic – British people talking to each other,” the source said.”

      FIFT

      “The criteria are security, terror, organised crime. And economic well-being.

      An interesting phrasing.

      CV, what do you think is going to happen after this? I’m guessing everyone will express outrage and then go back to their flat screen tvs, gmail accounts and FB pages.

      • Colonial Viper 22.1.1

        The most terrifying aspect of this is that a relatively small group of people now have the tools and the technology needed to blackmail and coerce any member of parliament, any member of the judiciary, any person of authority, any member of a jury, at will.

        Today we know that several people a year (sworn staff and civilian employees) are found guilty of accessing NZ police systems inappropriately to look up info on spouses, ex’s, celebrities,etc. Imagine a system 100x more powerful than that now. What are the temptations.

        Essentially these systems guarantee the end of democracy (although not necessarily the illusion of democracy) within a very short amount of time.

        Ironically the systems also create the conditions which destroy the possibility of any true capitalism or market place activity. Imagine that Boeing (US) and BAE (UK) are bidding on a new billion dollar project against Airbus (EU).

        Through their top secret security clearances and government contacts, Boeing and BAE can now have access to every single email, txt message, email attachment, phone call, made by executives on the BAE bid team.

        Overall the result I think you will see: an acceleration of the development of societal stagnation like was seen in surveillance states like East Germany.

        BTW it looks to me like they could have taken down General Patreaus with that sex scandal with his biographer, when he was head of the CIA, using this system. They will also have a full set of intercepts relating to Barack Obama’s time as an Illonois Senator, especially from the time that he became prominent as a potential up and comer.

  21. Colonial Viper 23

    3 former NSA whistleblowers say Snowden succeeded where they had failed

    If you can, watch the embedded video too. Props to USA Today for running this. There is still a lot of very good things about the US.

    Scary stuff – comment that the US Government deliberately detached itself from the Constitution after 9/11. That the spying programmes seemed more about generating revenues for private companies than anything else. That Snowden’s revelations are really only the tip of the iceberg. That every American is essentially being treated like a foreigner now.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/06/16/snowden-whistleblower-nsa-officials-roundtable/2428809/

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    Public Address | 23-11
  • Sunday music: Talking Heads on cities
    A blast from the past: the Talking Heads’ ode to urbanity, “Cities”. This is from the band’s fantastic concert film Stop Making Sense: The Talking Heads emerged from 1970s New York. The city itself wasn’t doing so well at the...
    Transport Blog | 23-11
  • Our social betters
    by Michael Roberts In a great new book, Billionaires: reflections on the upper crust (http://www.newrepublic.com/article/120092/billionaires-book-review-money-cant-buy-happiness), Darrel M West outlined various social surveys that show the richer a person is, the less likely they are to redistribute some of their wealth...
    Redline | 22-11
  • More details on the Glen Innes to Tamaki Dr path
    Auckland Transport have released more details about the route for the Glen Innes to Tamaki Dr shared path that they and the NZTA are going to build over the next few years. The $30 million path will be built between 2015 and 2018 in four...
    Transport Blog | 22-11
  • Headline of the week
    Original. To quote our very own Lamia, “Maybe the Maori Party should have included a history lesson in their confidence and supply agreement.”...
    On the Left | 22-11
  • Who or What Was Onboard MH370, That Someone Doesn’t Want Found?
    239 people (including crew) were onboard MH370 when it mysteriously disappeared on March 8th this year.  Not one single piece of confirmed wreckage has ever been found, nor has a definite crash area been identified. I, like I am sure...
    An average kiwi | 22-11
  • 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #47B
    Acid maps reveal worst of climate change Buffalo mega snowstorm tied to climate change? China will place a limit on coal use in 2020 Climate change investment falls for second year in 2013 Fossil-fueled Republicanism  House Republicans just passed a...
    Skeptical Science | 22-11
  • For oil companies, our rights are just another obstacle
    Once upon a time fossil fuel exploration took place far away, out of sight and out of mind. But as oil and gas giants become ever more desperate for new reserves they’re prepared to drill in places that were previously...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-11
  • The Arctic Sunrise, her journey continues
    Last Saturday, the ecologically pristine area around the Canary Islands was the watery stage of the next chapter in the story of the Arctic Sunrise. Last year, she carried Greenpeace activists across icy waters North of Russia, where they protested...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-11
  • New Wynyard Hotel disappointing
    More details were released yesterday surrounding a new luxury hotel – to be known as Park Hyatt Auckland – that is going to be built on the waterfront, on the site that currently houses the Team New Zealand headquarters.   The...
    Transport Blog | 22-11
  • Guest post: what should Andrew Little learn from Ed Miliband?
    John tweets at @mrduttonpeabody. A Labour leader being elected on the back of an election loss, through a system of weighted bloc votes, is familiar to anyone who follows UK politics. The 2010 UK Labour leadership election saw Ed Miliband...
    On the Left | 22-11
  • October 14 Patronage
    October’s patronage results show Aucklanders are continuing to flock to buses and trains. It’s especially true for the rapid transit network which is seeing staggering growth, up over 20% compared to the same month last year. It’s showing that the public...
    Transport Blog | 21-11
  • Hurray for “Hurray For The Riff Raff”!
     FIRST RATE AMERICANA came to Auckland's Tuning Fork venue last night in the form of the Alt-Country, Indie-Folk roots band Hurray For The Riff Raff. Led by Alynda Lee Segarra, the 27-year-old Peurto Rican singer-songwriter out of New Orleans via New...
    Bowalley Road | 21-11
  • Capture: Movement
    It felt like we were overdue for a post, and when I took the time to look back at what had come before, I realised yesterday we turned three. So before we get into it, thanks once again for another...
    Public Address | 21-11
  • Saturday playlist: new Labour leader
    It was difficult, but we managed to restrain ourselves from only posting songs with “Little” in the title … Add your (nice) suggestions below!...
    On the Left | 21-11
  • Stuart’s 100 #57: Grow your own
    57: Grow your own What if supermarkets could grow their own? Supermarkets, like service stations, are in that category of activities that are of such necessity and ubiquity to our daily life that they cumulatively have a very large footprint...
    Transport Blog | 21-11
  • The best of Neetflux (so far)
    A selection of our favourite Neetflux posters to date. Here’s to more awesome political satire to come! (Click through for full-size on Neetflux’s Tumblr)...
    On the Left | 21-11
  • Chipping away at police unaccountability
    Traditionally, our police have enjoyed a wide discretion over who to prosecute and how. Sometimes, this is a good thing - it means that the time of the courts is not wasted on minor crimes. In other cases, its use...
    No Right Turn | 21-11
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    frogblog | 21-11
  • CTU disappointed by poor government advice to workers on petrol station dri...
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (‘MBIE’) regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue. Photo:  ...
    CTU | 21-11
  • Charging petrol station workers for drive-offs
    So workers at Masterton’s Night ‘n Day store have had their pay docked when criminals drive off without paying. From the flood of complaints coming from around the country, it’s not a practice that is confined only to Masterton, nor is it...
    Occasionally erudite | 21-11
  • Tearing up Westminster
    The central bargain of Westminster democracy is that the monarch stays out of politics, and in exchange they get to stay in the role, both legally and literally. Prince Charles - already famous for his undemocratic interventions in politics -...
    No Right Turn | 21-11
  • South Auckland disadvantaged by new decile rankings
    New decile rankings have South Auckland schools at scores that show they are much more disadvantaged than the national average, says Labour’s Associate Auckland  Issues spokesperson Louisa Wall.  “As a measurement of disadvantage it is alarming that the average score...
    Labour | 24-11
  • Sexism, rape culture and power
    Our discourse around sexual violence is complicated. All too often perpetrators are described as ‘monsters’, so when someone you know tells you the lovely man that you really like sexually abused them it’s hard to believe, because they’re not a...
    Greens | 23-11
  • Time for an economy that works for all New Zealanders
    New Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says the challenge for the National Government is to support an economy that delivers good, sustainable jobs paying decent wages. “It’s time the economy delivered for all New Zealanders, not just the fortunate few....
    Labour | 23-11
  • New faces, wise heads in bold Labour line up
    Labour Leader Andrew Little today announced a bold new caucus line up which brings forward new talent and draws on the party’s depth of experience....
    Labour | 23-11
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    Greens | 21-11
  • National opens door further to Chinese property speculators
    National has further opened the door to Chinese property speculators with the registration of a third Chinese bank here that will make it easier for Chinese investors to invest in New Zealand properties, the Green Party said today."As well, former...
    Greens | 20-11
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour | 20-11
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour | 19-11
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens | 19-11
  • National caught out on state house porkies
    Housing NZ’s annual report out today directly contradicts the Government’s claim that one-third of its houses are in the wrong place and are the wrong size, said Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The annual report states 96 per cent of...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Damning report on Department of Conservation restructure
    The restructuring of the Department of Conservation (DOC) following National's severe funding cuts has been revealed as failure, the Green Party said today.The Taribon report has reviewed the new structure of DOC after 12 months. The restructuring, one of the...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Greens welcome Xi, but human rights need to be on agenda
    The Green Party welcomes the visit to New Zealand of Chinese President Xi Jinping and wishes to congratulate him on his recent announcement regarding China capping emissions for the first time.The United States and China recently unveiled a deal to...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Backing New Zealanders to get ahead
    New Labour Leader Andrew Little says it is an immense privilege to have been chosen to lead the party and to be given the task of ensuring it once again becomes a powerful force that backs New Zealanders in getting...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Andrew Little Elected Leader of Labour Party
    “The Labour Party congratulates Andrew Little, who has been elected as party leader in a robust and highly democratic process,” says Labour Party President Moira Coatsworth. “Andrew’s leadership will have the full support of the whole Labour Party.”...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Report into Brownlee security breach should be released
    The Government and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) should release the report into former Minister of Transport Gerry Brownlee's airport security breach, the Green Party said today."The actions of a Minister of Transport breaching security at an airport are a matter...
    Greens | 17-11
  • Brownlee must ask CAA to release the report
    Gerry Brownlee must ask the Civil Aviation Authority to release the report that finds he broke the law in breaching airport security, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It is inexcusable for any minister, let alone the then-Transport Minister, to...
    Labour | 17-11
  • G20 climate comment increases pressure on NZ
    The G20 decision to include climate change in its communiqué despite Australia's attempt to ignore it, increases pressure on New Zealand to come up with a credible plan to cut emissions, the Green Party said today.The G20 Leaders Communiqué from...
    Greens | 17-11
  • NZ joins G20 climate problem
    Confirmation this morning by John Key that his Government plans to do nothing to turn around NZ's rapidly rising greenhouse emissions means that New Zealand joins Australia as one of the problem children at the G20 meeting in Brisbane, the...
    Greens | 16-11
  • IRD joins Corrections in Phillip Smith failure
    It is incomprehensible that IRD and Corrections were not able to stop Phillip Smith from rorting the tax system out of $50,000 until it was too late, given that he was a notoriously manipulative prisoner stuck in jail, says Labour’s...
    Labour | 13-11
  • The Government has to listen to Olly
    When even hard boiled property investors like Olly Newland  say first home buyers have been shafted by Loan to Value Ratio lending restrictions, surely it is time for the Government to listen, says Labour's housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  "Auckland landlord...
    Labour | 13-11
  • Key used GCSB for political ends prior to 2014 election
    New documents released to the Green Party show that Prime Minister John Key used New Zealand's intelligence services for the National Party's political ends a few days out from the 2014 election, the Green Party said today.Documents released to the...
    Greens | 13-11
  • Government not meeting its climate target
    The Government must front up to the fact that its own advisors are now saying that New Zealand is off target in any transition to a low carbon future, says Labour’s spokesperson on Climate Change Nanaia Mahuta.  “A briefing to...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Briefing reveals Defence facilities ‘increasingly unfit for purpose’
    The Defence Briefing to the Incoming Minister reveals a deteriorating state in Defence facilities that are no longer fit for purpose, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  “The briefing is heavily censored but still reveals that Defence camps, bases and...
    Labour | 12-11
  • New projections show New Zealand missing climate target
    Briefings to Incoming Ministers released today reveal the Government's climate policy is failing with projected emission more than double what is needed to meet National's 2050 target, the Green Party saidProjections released by the Ministry for the Environment, as part...
    Greens | 12-11
  • National’s highways far less efficient
    National’s new state highways have a far lower cost-benefit ratio than motorways built under the last Labour Government, making a mockery of the Government’s bluster that its road building will boost the economy, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “New...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Governor points finger at National on supply
    The Reserve Bank Governor has admitted he had to keep loan to value mortgage restrictions in place because the Government’s attempts to increase housing has fallen ‘a long way short’, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The thousands of first...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Did Collins cover up Slater’s OIA requests?
    Disgraced former Cabinet Minister Judith Collins must explain why she appears to have tried to hide Official Information Act requests she fulfilled for Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “New documents obtained by Labour show Judith...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Reserve Bank’s dairy warning must be heard
    The Reserve Bank’s warning that falling dairy prices are creating greater risks for the New Zealand economy must be taken seriously by Bill English and John Key, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “Dairy prices have nearly halved since February...
    Labour | 11-11
  • National’s housing failure keeps LVRs in place
    The Reserve Bank’s decision to leave loan-to-value ratio mortgage restrictions in place is further confirmation of National’s housing policy fiasco, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank would have lifted LVRs if they had seen any increase in...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Let’s see if it is plane sailing Mr Bridges
    Comments by Transport Minister Simon Bridges that Far North residents' anger over cutbacks to regional flights will be allayed by larger planes and cheaper fares out of Kerikeri, are just pure arrogance, says Labour’s Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis....
    Labour | 11-11
  • Commerce Commission inquiry needed into building supplies monopoly
    The Commerce Commission must stop dragging the chain and urgently investigate the anti-competitive practices in the building industry that are driving up the cost of building materials, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Competition in the building materials market is...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air New Zealand grounds Far North
    The announcement by Air New Zealand to close services from Kaitaia to Auckland will be an absolute disaster for the Far North, Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis says.  “Air New Zealand is sending a signal to the...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Pulling West Coast flights a savage blow
    Air New Zealand’s decision to withdraw its Westport service is another kick in the guts for an already struggling community, West Coast-Tasman MP, Damien O’Connor says.   “Having been involved in the West Coast’s efforts to get Air Nelson to return...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air NZ cuts economic lifelines to neglected regions
    Air New Zealand’s plans to cut its Eagle Air regional services to already struggling regions is a hammer blow to Westport, Whakatane and Kaitaia, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The regions of New Zealand are being abandoned by this...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Christchurch on the rent rack
    A jump of 20 per cent in weekly rents in the past year is a disaster for Christchurch, says Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Trade Me Property Rental Price index has rightly described the city as being a ‘...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Past time to act on warnings about palliative care
    Health officials have been warning the Government about a critical shortage of palliative care specialists for years, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Annette King says. A stocktake carried out for the Ministry of Health shows New Zealand’s end...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Report must spur Government into action
    The soaring cost of domestic violence and child abuse highlight the need for the Government to prioritise and act on the issue, says Labour's spokesperson for Social Development, Sue Moroney.“Findings from the Glenn Inquiry that show the problem is estimated...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Family safety paramount, then urgent review
    Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has some serious questions to answer over why a dangerous prison escapee, convicted of further crimes while in jail, managed to abscond while he was on approved temporary release, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“Phillip...
    Labour | 09-11
  • LVRs a failed experiment from Bill English
    Loan to value mortgage restrictions are a failed experiment from Bill English to tame Auckland house prices, that have caused collateral damage to first home buyers and other regions, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The possible end of LVR...
    Labour | 09-11
  • Govt books getting worse as economy slows
    National’s economic credibility is under serious scrutiny with its search for surplus becoming harder due to an economy far too reliant on the dairy industry, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National promised New Zealanders would get into surplus by...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Kiwis in pain because of Government underfunding
    New research showing one in three people needing elective surgery are being denied publicly-funded operations shows the Government must properly fund the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “For almost two years Labour has been warning about the...
    Labour | 06-11
  • National’s promised surplus looking doubtful
    Budget figures for the first quarter of the financial year released today by Treasury show the Government's goal of achieving a budget surplus is looking doubtful, the Green Party said today."National has staked its credibility on achieving a budget surplus...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour | 06-11
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • How biased is the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2014. Photo: DanRogayan A TOP Filipino investigative journalist will be speaking about the “worst attack” on journalists in history and her country’s culture of impunity in a keynote...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • The Warehouse & Noel Leeming Praised for Principled Stand
    Family First NZ is congratulating The Warehouse and Noel Leeming for reinforcing their ‘family-friendly values’ by removing R18 games and DVD’s from its shelves, and is calling on other retailers including JB Hi-Fi, Harvey Norman and Dick Smith...
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • PM’s Post-Cab on Iain Rennie, China and the Smith Inquiry
    In a press conference held today in Wellington, Prime Minister John Key answered questions regarding Iain Rennie’s potential resignation, the independent inquiry into the Smith/Traynor escape, and recent trade deals with China....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Safety Week 2014 focused on a safe summer
    ACC’s annual Safety Week kicks off today. With summer just around the corner, Safety Week this year is focusing on keeping safe when playing sport, enjoying recreational activities or drinking alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Safety focus during motorcycle month
    As the Central District Police annual Month of Motorcycles campaign cruises into its second week, the results so far have been positive with many motorcyclists playing their part to keep our roads safe....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST
    Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST The Sensible Sentencing Trust is slamming a decision which may acquit a Whakatane offender of serious dangerous driving charges....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons
    Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons to show violence towards women is never OK...
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media
    Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media to say “no” to domestic violence Everyone has the right to feel safe at home. Many do not. One in three partnered New Zealand women report having experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner...
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Smoke Alarms in Rental properties
    TPA says recent calls for mandatory smoke alarm installations in rental properties is an opportunity for all parties to come together to improve the safety and quality of rental housing....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • CTU will not engage in Governments sham consultation process
    Today the CTU has sent a letter to Prime Minister John Key articulating serious concerns about both the content and the rushed process the Government has clearly signalled it intends to follow to progress the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Job vacancies steady in October
    The number of skilled job vacancies advertised online remained steady in October across most industry groups and occupations, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s latest Jobs Online report....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • 600 Slaves And Counting on New Zealand Soil
    The 2014 Global Slavery Index has just been released, and buried within its pages is New Zealand’s growing issue of human exploitation and slavery. When taken in conjunction with the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons Report 2014,...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and NZ
    Media Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and New Zealand: Police Commissioners take a stand against violence against women and children...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • NZ Police Commissioner makes a stand against Family Violence
    New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush has joined with his Australian Police Commissioner colleagues at Parliament House in Canberra this morning to take a stand on violence against women and children....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Amnesty International campaigns for end to domestic violence
    Amnesty International will be making a donation of over $500 to Aviva (formerly known as Women’s Refuge Christchurch) at the conclusion of Tuesday’s inner city march against domestic violence....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Waka Hourua celebrates what’s working in suicide prevention
    On 19 and 20 November, Māori and Pasifika national suicide prevention programme Waka Hourua held its first national hui-fono in Auckland. The theme was Whakarauika Mai: Bringing Communities Together to Prevent Suicide in Aotearoa. ...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower
    Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower SKYCITY’s Sky Tower in Auckland will be lit up in white on Monday evening Nov 25th at 10pm, on the eve of White Ribbon Day. The anti-domestic violence network SAFTINET (Safer Auckland Families...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little
    State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little The new Labour leader Andrew Little has called for the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie to be stood down after his handling of the Roger Sutton sexual harassment case. "The idea...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
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