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The Standard

Open mike 29/01/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 29th, 2013 - 105 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…

105 comments on “Open mike 29/01/2013”

  1. Te Reo Putake 1

    Rather sad end to the Al Quada occupation of Timbuktu:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jan/28/mali-timbuktu-library-ancient-manuscripts

    • CV - Real Labour 1.1

      That’s just awful.

    • Pete 1.2

      As a heritage librarian, this deeply saddens me.Timbuktu is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and many of its treasures were destroyed when Al Qaida invaded last year. I see no purpose to this wanton act of destruction. Some of the manuscripts have been digitised, but it’s only a fraction.

    • muzza 1.3

      This is what happens, when you have *al qaeda fighters*, imported into an area, with the mission of kill and destroy.

      Have a look at the cultural destruction reeked by NATO forces around the ME/Africa, it is very likely that many of the *destroyed* artifacts, are in fact stolen, then sold/handed over to the *financiers*

      • McFlock 1.3.1

        Muzz, you have a unique ability to connect two arbitrary dots and call it “a nuanced reproduction of a lost Rembrandt, underneath all them other dots and lines and shit that were placed there by the powers that be to distract us”.

        • muzza 1.3.1.1

          Cultural destruction takes many forms McFlock, perhaps the manuscripts were destroyed, perhaps Hallé Ousmani Cissé and his cronies took backhanders to sell them, who really knows!

          The net loss amounts to the same thing so far as Mali, and its peoples are concerned, which is a real tragedy!

          Have a look at the cultural destruction during Gulf War 1/2 in Iraq, then consider that some of those artifacts, are stolen/destroyed/sold off, to order!

          • McFlock 1.3.1.1.1

            There’s a lot of difference between not planning for an occupation of an entire country and just burning down a library.

            • One Tāne Huna 1.3.1.1.1.1

              …and still more between either of the above and seeing everything through the distorting paranoid lens of Project Onan.

              This is the world in which “Al Quaeda” is a branch of the Illuminatii Special Ops Unit, remember, a waste of oxygen, bandwidth, and a perfectly good computer.

          • blue leopard 1.3.1.1.2

            I thought it was pretty standard information that the CIA have been actively interfering with countries for the last half century plus. William Blum wrote a book listing a lot of them. Am I understanding the comments here to be sneering at Muzza’s comment concerned over this fact?

            I find it very hard to watch international news now because I feel I am watching/listening to majorly distorted information, propaganda, I don’t know whether I am or not, however if there has been a book written listing many false flag style activities and describing them, (“researched from books, periodicals, newspapers and US Government publications” p12, W.Blum “The CIA a forgotten history”) and how it is not how it was reported at the time; then why would anyone believe that anything has changed now??

            Horrible to hear about those libraries. Hope that the manuscripts were taken and not destroyed.

            • McFlock 1.3.1.1.2.1

              Yes. The CIA wants to destroy a heritage site to blame AQ. Just like the CIA destroyed the Bamiyan Buddhas. And flew 1/4 scale drones into the twin towers. /sarc

              The trouble is that the CIA really have been fucking with the rest of the planet, but muzz shooting from the hip with absolutely no evidence to back it up simply muddies the waters even further.

              But obviously be it a local small-town murder, large scale terrorist act or cultural vandalism half a world away, there is no incident Muzz won’t grasp with both hands to hawk their latest conspiracy allusions (never making an actual allegation, of course, just casting aspersions).

              • How would someone get proof?

                What would be an effective way of getting public support in a violent clash?
                What about:
                “Ooo, I know, lets destroy some historical manuscripts, we know that really gets people’s goat”

                I am seriously “over” the international news; its horrible not keeping myself informed, yet I’d rather that than be misinformed. It is horrible what is going on in the world and we must question what we hear.

                I’m not into conspiracies, (as in this is all being guided by a few very wealthy people), however I think it is without doubt that we are being fed a pack a crap and having our opinions massively manipulated, so that we simply do not stand up and demand “NO MORE”. This won’t occur until more people question what they are being told. Sneering at someone who does so, doesn’t come across as the most intelligent response; not these days.

                The threats against Syria, co-ordinated in Washington and London, scale new peaks of hypocrisy. Contrary to the raw propaganda presented as news, the investigative journalism of the German daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung identifies those responsible for the massacre in Houla as the ‘rebels’ backed by Obama and Cameron. The paper’s sources include the rebels themselves. This has not been completely ignored in Britain. Writing in his personal blog, ever so quietly, Jon Williams, the BBC world news editor, effectively dishes his own ‘coverage’, citing western officials who describe the ‘psy-ops’ operation against Syria as ‘brilliant’. As brilliant as the destruction of Libya, and Iraq, and Afghanistan. ~J. Pilger

                http://www.globalresearch.ca/history-is-the-enemy-as-brilliant-psy-ops-become-the-news/31528

                • McFlock

                  Yes, we can argue that incontrovertible proof in any circumstance is likely to be impossible to gather. But Muzz mouths off with no evidence – no journalists asking questions, no alt.nutbar.media rants, no nothing. Muzz sees an incident, and says “ooo, corporate thieves might well have stolen the manuscripts”. There’s a murder in the paper, and Muzz’ spidey sense says “looks like a police clean-up crew to cover something up”.

                  Shit. Can’t we just wait for the dust to settle before throwing accusations about who burned a library or killed a young mum, neither of which we’d heard of before it came through on the telly?

                  • I guessed there was history with Muzza.

                    However, no, I don’t think we can wait for the dust to settle. For one thing, it never does, haven’t you noticed?

                    Can you imagine what it would be like in places like Iraq or Afghanistan. I’ll bet they wish that; that the Yanks and Brits would just F* right off and let the dust settle, that the bullets would stop flying. I hate to think what they think of us Westerners, wanting the dust to settle before we absorb the truth of the situation; that our culture is responsible for a whole lot of these problems.

                    • McFlock

                      Actually, we know pretty well who dropped the ball regarding Iraq’s historic monuments and museums, for example. Took a wee while though. Saddam was pretty crap to them, but the US assumption that post-invasion everything would be unicorns farting rainbows destroyed a large chunk of global history.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      I dunno.

                      News has always been like this. Story breaks, truth emerges later.

                      It’s not a conspiracy, it’s hardwired in. Journos report what they see and are, more often, told.

                      So when you read a story quoting someone as saying ‘Y says X killed a bunch of people in war zone yesterday’. That’s what the news is: Y saying it.

                      Most of the confusion comes from readers thinking that journos ought to be omniscient and able to verify the truth of what Y is saying. But that’s not their job. That would more easily lead to people playing them in fact.

                      News orgs want to get teh story out as fast as they can, and that’s both important and valuable.the reason news is called the first draft of history, is that it collects data into a timeline so that the truth can be later interpreted. That’s a different job.

                    • Yes, good point Pascal’s bookie,

                      I did think that a journalists job used to be reporting the facts as accurately as possible, and this used to involve doing some research, not simply relaying what someone tells them, or tells them to say. One reason you gave that this is not done now, is the time factor, another is political/financial interests of the particular news outlet.

                      Whatever the reason for the poor level of reporting, there is no reason to read/listen/watch news and believe that what is going on is being reported verbatim; it is not.

                    • McFlock

                      Agreed, BL. But (in the complete absence of any opposing evidence at this early stage) nor should we necessarily assume that something completely different “very likely” happened. Which was Muzza’s initial reaction.

                    • With the consistently regular revelations that the CIA, American or British (French, Oil, Financial…) interests were involved in well less than scrupulous behaviour in such&such war, I think, is a pretty good reason to assume that it is unlikely what we are getting reported now is accurate to what is really going on.

                      I do not believe, however, it is beneficial to jump to conclusions about the details, i.e. who is behind it; this requires research. I do consider it rational to assume it is unlikely to be occurring, especially the given reasons, as it is reported.

                    • McFlock

                      The thing is that yeah, I can withhold judgement on whether the French involvement is out of the kindness of their hearts or simply because they want to put down a bit of a buffer against the Chinese global agricultural land grab. The latter involves plausible geopolitical motives consistent with neocolonial history.

                      But there’s no real benefit to burning down an ancient historic library and blaming it on AQ. It underlines the dickishness to people who value heritage libraries and ancient documents, but it’s not a significant selling point so much as, say, injured babies etc. Most people don’t give a shit about their local libraries, let alone ones in Africa. And looting the documents for financiers? Possible, but there’s a lot of risk involved for not much reward. If everyone’s looting, like post-invasion Iraq, then cool. But the French seem to have done their homework on this one.

                      So I don’t see any gain in fabricating or looting libraries as part of national policy.

                      But I do see it as consistent with previous (okay, apparent) AQ/fundy activities.

                      Sooner or later William of Occam has a shave.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      I definitely don’t think you should take every quote in a paper as gospel.

                      But I do think it’s safe to take the fact that a quote was given as legit. If you don’t, you’ve got nothing.

                      The question I ask is not so much “Why is the paper telling me this?” but “Why is the person quoted saying this?” All the paper is doing is reporting that x said y. It’s up to readers to think about the truth of y given what they know about x.

                      And it’s also true that western govts muck about all over the world doing things. But that doesn’t mean I interpret every event through that lens. What is going on in Mali, or Iraq, or anywhere else is primarily about the locals. They too have agendas. I’m largely ignorant about those agendas, so it’s tempting to assume that what we are doing is more important than what is happening with the locals. It’s a temptation that’s way more important to fight, in my view, than trusting media reporting.

                      In Mali, you’ve got 90 odd percent of the country living in the south, of one ethnic group, and another bunch up in the North. The Northern folk basically live in the Sahara. The problem of western intervention starts there. Why is that one country? Who drew that border? The west, and it’s not one that makes sense.

                      I guess my point here is that every war is unique, and based on local conditions. Outsiders will try, ( often with some success) to interfere for their own ends, but the success they have will depend on the local truths. It’s the local stuff that really matters. You can’t start a war in a country that doesn’t in some way want one anyway. More often, the west is trying to shape a local war in their own favour.

                      We shouldn’t take it as read that the west is stirring shit up, or even suspect it.

                      classic example is Syria, which is an absolute clusterfuck as far as the west is concerned, because it’s not about us in anyway whatsoever, and yet due to it’s position ad capabilities the west has strong self perceived interests there. But that doesn’t mean that we are manipulating events. It’s more likely that events are out of out control, as they usually are, and we are panicking.

                      that’s the other lesson from histories of western intelligence antics; mots of it is blundering and panic driven from a position of ignorance and hubris.

                      I don’t give the intelligence agencies enough credit to suspect they could pull of too many conspiracies.

                  • @ McFlock,

                    Yeah, the conversation is heading toward who and what motivations might be creating the problem, and I am uncomfortable with that, however, I will mention that burning a library with ancient manuscripts in it is a whole lot different to burning down one of our local libraries! And I do understand there is a big market for manuscripts. I didn’t understand Muzza’s comment to be saying they burned the library “as part of National Policy” (lol), I understood Muzza’s comment to be indicating that “financiers” could benefit from the selling of these manuscripts.

                    Hopefully they have been looted prior to burning. It is clear that you don’t care much about ancient manuscripts, yet I find it very painful to hear they have been destroyed and I’m sure that many others, also, will too. Unsure whether it is common knowledge or not (so sorry if I am relaying something you already know)
                    We get the knowledge behind all our clever technology from the brilliant middle-eastern scholars who both translated and developed Greek knowledge, had they not done so, this knowledge would have been lost, due to our propensity for…burning knowledge…that didn’t fit in with the Christian paradigm of the time. Who knows what knowledge has been lost in these libraries that have been burned in Mali :(

                    Pascal’s bookie,
                    I agree with that approach, basically you are relaying ways to employ discernment with one’s intake of information.

                    To shape a war for one’s own purposes, is very manipulative and is really buggering things up for other countries, I sincerely wish that our Western culture would stop sticking its nose into other countries and get its own issues sorted. Best way to lead is by example, and “ours” is a shocking one.

                    Although I like the spirit of your comment of not giving intelligence agencies credit, I don’t agree. I was very swayed by “The Economic Hitman”, this was someone who was speaking about his personal experience and it sounded pretty damning. Naomi Klein’s “Shock Doctrine” and the William Blum book I mentioned earlier fairly well convince me that intelligence agencies are doing things that most wouldn’t believe and wouldn’t want to believe. And that, really, is the largest problem. Until people face what is going on, its unlikely to be improved upon.

                    • McFlock

                      but there are no reports it was looted. Just of fire.

                      So for muzz to say that “most likely” it was looted is just adding 1 and 1 together to get 8.

                    • @ McFlock,

                      Yes, fair enough. Having conversed with you, I can see that I have reached the end of actually believing what groups are labelled as on the news. Calling it the “crying wolf effect” may help you understand!

                      Perhaps in this case what has been reported has actually happened, or, perhaps, taking what PB noted, we may find out a different story in time to come. I just don’t see that Muzza’s comment was extraordinary in suggesting that the manuscripts could end up on the blackmarket.

                      Taking your & TRP’s comment below into account & also someone I was talking with, it does appear to be Al Qaeida’s M.O. to destroy heritage sites. And thus, yes, I concede, its a fair point. I continue, however, to get a very hollow feeling at any point I start feeling the remotest belief in what is being reported these days. I just smell a rat; view it as propaganda…oh dear, I’m turning into a cynic….

                    • McFlock

                      Perfectly possible that the manuscripts were stolen.

                      But based on one short report of a fire, it doesn’t follow to immediately assume that they were “most likely” stolen. The only hope we have of seeing through the bullshit is if we don’t make stuff up as we go along.

                      I have friends who are trying to find out what’s happening with their loved ones in Bundaberg. Apparently it’s quite difficult trying to find news through all the hollywood divorces and famous people feeling betrayed by Lance Armstrong. Most likely the powers that be made Lance confess to Oprah so that we’d not focus so closely on climate change. /sarc

                    • muzza

                      I said, very likely McFlock, and then linked to the time article below to illustrate how these things can play out.

                      Of course it’s conclusive, as shown by TRP’s link to a bbc article in todays (30/1) open mike.

                      The story keeps changing, the articles are more or less worthless in terms of credibility, which is generally what I am pointing out.

                      Blue Leopard/P’s B seems to understand, and I enjoyed reading their sensible comments, followed by what reads as a concession of sorts, from you!

                    • muzza

                      My comment above should read

                      Of course it’s NOT conclusive, as shown by TRP’s link to a bbc article in todays (30/1) open mike.

                    • McFlock

                      Firstly, okay, “very likely” rather than “most likely”. Not sure where I got the most from, fair enough.

                      But then you still have no basis for assuming that it is very likely that many of the *destroyed* artifacts, are in fact stolen, then sold/handed over to the *financiers*.

              • muzza

                Criminal activity thrives in chaos, and the theft of antiquities for a rapacious international black market is no exception

                Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan have all fallen victim to looters during previous wars, and Libya and Egypt, rich in archaeological sites, witnessed several attempts at looting during their more recent uprisings. In the case of Syria, however, the full-blown civil war may do more harm than simply the plundering of its culture. The burgeoning market for this ancient land’s priceless treasures could actually prolong and intensify the conflict, providing a ready supply of goods to be traded for weapons. Furthermore, the ongoing devastation inflicted on the country’s stunning archaeological sites—bullet holes lodged in walls of its ancient Roman cities, the debris of Byzantine churches, early mosques and crusader fortresses—rob Syria of its best chance for a post-conflict economic boom based on tourism, which, until the conflict started 18 months ago, contributed 12% to the national income.

                In case McFlock has forgotten recent history

                While the Nazis were in power, they plundered cultural property from every territory they occupied.

                Same crew reeking war upon the planet, same techniques employed to destroy/plunder nations, same techniques to fool the naive!

                • McFlock

                  So what reports of looting of Mali’s treasures have there been, muzz? Do you have anything from reality upon which to base your logical leap?

                • Te Reo Putake

                  Muzza, they burned the library and destroyed mosques because they believe that they are idolatrous or or in some way denying their version of the Mohammadan story. The taliban did similar shit in Afghanistan, and Saudi Arabia bulldozed flat anything that wasn’t Wahhabi. AQIM didn’t steal the books and manuscripts, they burned them as a final act of twisted piety before abandoning Timbuktu.

                  By the way, is your google broken? This stuff isn’t hard to find.

                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wahhabi

                  Excerpt:

                  The Wahhabi teachings disapprove of veneration of the historical sites associated with early Islam, on the grounds that only God should be worshipped and that veneration of sites associated with mortals leads to idolatry.[61] Many buildings associated with early Islam, including mazaar, mausoleums and other artifacts have been destroyed in Saudi Arabia by Wahhabis from early 19th century through the present day.[62][63] This practice has proved controversial and has received considerable criticism from Sunni and Shia Muslims and in the non-Muslim World.

                  Edit: snap joe90 below

    • joe90 1.4

      There’s a sectarian bent to this with most of the vandalism carried out by Sunni Wahhabis.

      The Bamiyan Buddahs were destroyed by the Wahhabi backed Taliban and the rebels in Mali who destroyed ancient shrines, with many more under threat, were most probably Wahhabi backed.

      There’s also an Egyptian extremist calling for the destruction of idols, the Sphinx and Pyramids.

  2. tracey 2

    Next time a politician or developer talks about building in Auckland or Christchurch, can someone ask them WHY the developers don’t have a ten year personal liability obligation as designers and builders do under the new regulations? Afterall it’s developers who take the biggest profit from building projects and drive the amount of money spent on a home of development, and if the leaky home saga is anything to go by they have cut and run and almost to a man have escaped any financial liability for those homes by dissolving their companies. I shudder to think what the landscape may look like in ten years if these guys lead the “build” and cut corners for greater profit as they did between 1990 and 2005.

    I heard Mr Carver of Jennian home sthis morning whinging and yet he has franchised his business and so HQ and he personally dont actually have to stand behind anything they build.

    This govt is heading us back down a building deregulation road, different to 1990’s but will have disastrous consequences… but not for non liable developers of course…

    • vto 2.1

      Simplistic and incorrect on several fronts there Tracey.

      Simplistic in retutn …. go ask your local politician those questions. It is they who changed the laws and regs which led directly to this disaster.

      Much exactly like Pike River.

      edit: and if every person in the process is required to have a personal guarantee then while you’re with your local pollie suggest that he/she also provide such a personal guarantee

      • tracey 2.1.1

        I have asked those questions.

        Can you explain to me vto how it is that a builder and designer can give (are forced to by regulation) such a guarantee but not the developer?? Please further explain how holding the developer liable for ten years post construction is simplistic? Surely the same logic applies to them as to the builders and designers, namely if they are personally liable they will do better work. As for the councils/territorial authorities, yes Govt has legislated immunity to them for any fuck ups they make… at least on one level it makes sense because it is the ratepayers who pay the price, but that doesn’t apply to the developers. I await your explanation of why it is simplistic to hold developers to account in this way. Can you also be specific about the area sin my post which are incorrect?

        The govt has already singled out builders and designers, I suggest opening it up to developers who drive these projects. Your last (edit) comment is a straw man argument and doesn’t actually address what I wrote.

        I look forward to your more detailed response.

        • CV - Real Labour 2.1.1.1

          Hammurabi’s Rule. Looks like ancient Babylon had it sorted.

          http://www.bloomberg.com/video/78071828-nassim-taleb-on-wall-street-protest-banking.html

        • MrSmith 2.1.1.2

          Tracey: The builders, developers and owners will build to the rules set by the government and councils or to put it another way if you make the speed limit 100km an hour people will drive to or about the limit but if you get caught breaking the limit you will then be breaking the rules/law and fined accordingly.

          Now some people started traveling at 110km and know-one stopped them, then they pushed it out to 120km and still nothing was done, then some people just started going any speed they wanted and of course things started to go wrong.

          You seem to have brought into the witch hunt this government have facilitated, the blame for this lays squarely at the foot of the National government of the day that deregulated the building industry and the councils for not enforcing what rules there where at the planing stage, and later during inspections.

          This in no way excuses the dodgy builders or the dodgy developers who by the way take all the risks and property developing is a very risky business. Yes people or companies declare bankruptcy and walk away, but very few set out with this in mind, all the people I know that have gone tits up have lost almost everything along with the reputation. The National government of the day are to blame so the National government of today should be fixing it! But knowing them they will be waiting of the market to sort it out, yeah right!

          Of course the aftermath of this and the CHCH earthquake will see more regulations, with that more expensive houses, basically the housing industry had been keeping prices down through cutting costs and corners for years now.

          • tracey 2.1.1.2.1

            again you dodge my question. Given that builders and designers (rightly or wrongly) have had personal liability placed on them for ten years, why not developers.

            “Of course the aftermath of this and the CHCH earthquake will see more regulations,” Really, so far the intent of this government is the opposite, less regulations already and intended, especially around developments (as opposed to single dwellings).

            I am well aware that builders on the whole are unfairly having 80% liability sheeted tot hem in leaky building claims. This is why I point to developer liability as well. They will, and have in the past, made much more money than the builders on each home built.

            As for intent, I dont think you have met many career developers because they absolutely, in consultation with their lawyer and accountant set up companies for a particular development, take the profit and then shut them down. Precisely to avoid any future liability on their work. Now back to your supposition that if caught breaking rules they will be fined… and how will they pay given without a legal entity to sue no one is liable?

            • CV - Real Labour 2.1.1.2.1.1

              You have to make the accountability of directors (former directors) in law, outlive the existence of the company.

  3. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 3

    The rise of Islamic activists may be unstoppable. The genie has come out of the bottle after being aroused by the west, USA and Russia (west?) mainly. The USA has to stop going to war as a means of getting their business indices trending upwards.

    In the meantime Genghis Khan type policies are arising from both sides of the battle. Things will be likely to get worse if people with integrity and clever practical minds don’t get hold of the decision making and budget. We need another Churchill type. Not perfect but with clear understanding of the threats ahead.

    • CV - Real Labour 3.1

      And if we don’t get a Churchill type, we may get someone far worse, from the other side of history.

  4. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 4

    Good chant? Out, out, out. John Key is too low key. Give us a Cheshire cat smile John.
    Repeat! (Cheshire cat’s smile faded away to nothing – Alice through the Looking Glass I think.)

  5. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 5

    This government can’t do its governing effectively to ensure the best for the whole country. So what do they do? Interfere with local government, such as Christchurch and now to disdain the information given on housing by the Auckland Council instead quoting the opinions of business as if it was necessarily correct. Anything that is working is likely to be rejigged and end up replaced with some shonky stuff.

    This also applies to Picton which needs to be on people’s agenda. That town is going to be hollowed out so that the government can cosy up to Chinese investors with bulging bank balances. Picton is a jewel, the interislander trip is a jewel, we are a poor country and can’t afford to adopt the throwaway society attitude to viable, effective, modern and good earning businesses. Mostly owned by NZs. With the profit remaining as a credit in NZ. If foreigners invest and leave money invested here, it is always a debt, a liability to us, that can be taken out at their will.

    • tc 5.1

      The interislander move is a slap in the face for kiwi small business and another win for their trucking lobby backers, like they haven’t been rewarded enough already with RONS, larger load sizes etc etc

      I find this encapsulates the NACT in a nutshell and the MSM sucked it up without as much as a ‘hang on wait a minute…’ during the slow news season.

      Can’t wait for 7 sharp to keep us all informed and invigorate debate. TVNZ falling behind Joyce’s lines to keep follks amused not informed while they go about their business. Can his mates at skycity have some of your studio in akl, you will not be needing it with production shifting to sky.

    • muzza 5.2

      I took the words of Bill English in regards to land etc, aimed at the AKL Council, as a future forecast, veiled as a threat!

      You need to gauge the reaction of the media/public when broadcasting, that central govt *might* look at taking over due process of an elected local govt.

      And the bad played on!

  6. vto 6

    This government is losing it in Christchurch.

    People wanting to retail or build or develop or invest or live in teh CBD have been frightened off by the great overlord and his ways. Go to it Brownlee, the CBD is all yours. Let us know once you’ve finished and we’ll all come see how you’ve done.

    Christchurch east is forgotten. Drive deep into the east and you will see what the stories are all about.

    People are forgotten. People are still living in squalor http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/christchurch-earthquake/8233403/Quake-hit-Christchurch-families-still-living-in-squalor Well done Brownlee, well done.

    At the last election there was a swing in favour of Brownlee, but this was disaster politics at the time whereby the incumbent is always favoured as people want stability at all costs. Next time around in 2014? I predict a spectacular hiding to nothing. Even the true Nats are agin this government, e.g. the government approach to buying their CBD properties.

    And then of course, once this government is tossed out the city will be left with some other new government which will no doubt move things around, change the goalposts and struggle to finish off Brownlee’s grand plan. Pessimism is just below the surface with many even today saying that they are still in two minds about the city and may well move yet.

    • bad12 6.1

      Am just about willing to put money on the fact that National this far out from November 2014 are pretty much history,

      A swing away from National in the Christchurch area as big as the swing that went toward them in that are in 2011 will all but finish them,

      As will a further swing away from the Maori Party who’s voters gave them(except for Te Tai Tonga)the benefit of the doubt vote in 2011, it has taken a couple of election cycles for the Maori Party voters to realize that the crumbs off of the table they can expect to gain with an application to the ‘Whanau Ora’ program cannot make up for their loss as Paula cuts a swathe through benefit numbers…

    • the Al1en 6.2

      Perhaps if more of them had voted Burns and Cosgrove, the government wouldn’t have a majority.
      And perhaps if they’d voted for JA instead of parker.
      Well, you get the gist.

      Better luck next election, Christchurch.

    • geoff 6.3

      Hey vto it’s not all bad news coming out of CHCH. Fletcher’s shareholders are do quite nicely, thank you very much
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/8233237/Fletcher-hot-property-as-payouts-exceed-1b

      nice to see a silver lining eh

  7. McFlock 7

    So apparently Israel has been administering contraceptives to Ethiopian Jews without their consent. And not, like, ages ago. They’ve only just issued an order to stop.

    That state just loves heaping on the irony, doesn’t it?

  8. gobsmacked 8

    Advice for David Shearer: ifyoudon’t
    knowhow
    todotherhythmof
    convincingcommu
    nication
    thenyouneedto
    markyourspeech
    withprettycolouredpens
    or
    some
    thing
    otherwiseitspain
    fultolistento
    andthepointsdon’thavemuchim
    pact

    I don’t know which is worse, the woeful comedy routine of Key’s performance or Shearer’s fifth-form delivery. The latter is lost without a script, the former should just get lost.

    • ad 8.1

      That’s and have some actual policy to launch the year with. None in that speech.

      If Shearer’s housing policy is the only thing pushing blood through Labour’s veins, then we’d better have a defibrilator ready. It’s a nasty risk to run to have it placed on that single hit to keep both hands on the ribcage, pressing.

    • xtasy 8.2

      With both anticipation and FEAR did I await the re-opening of Parliament this year, and today, my fears were confirmed yet again.

      For heaven’s sake, Labourites, get meetings called, at base level, prepare for a take-over of the party, a kind of “reclaiming” of what Labour traditionally once stood for, and what a “real” opposition party in Parliament should stand for right now!

      Start a bloody revolution, and once and for all, get RID of DEAD WOOD!

      Shearer’s speech was less than mediocre, an embarrassment, even though he tried hard.

      Key took off with attacking, blaming and slamming Labour and Shearer, then served up more of what the Nats have been preaching to us for the last few years, talked like an over-ambitious, half – intoxicated used car salesman, to hammer home to the public and Parliament, that they will push through their ideology driven agenda relentlessly.

      It was just more rehashed stuff of what we have heard before, and in that “State of the Nation Speech” from Key.

      Shearer was stumbling again, losing track, mis-spelling, mumbling and fumbling with his words, then at times seemed to get on track again, clearly wanted to present a message, but did anything but to convince. It was disappointing, and he is trying to act as one “leader” that he is not.

      Brian Edwards is right in his analysis:
      http://brianedwardsmedia.co.nz/2013/01/why-david-shearer-should-give-up-acting-hes-just-no-good-at-it/

      This is becoming such an embarrasment, and the whole party will suffer endlessly, if he is not forced to resign in the coming weeks. A challenge must be made, or this will be yet another lost political year. More defensive “selling” of the same housing policy, of youth apprenticeships for the dole, of a bit vague this and the other, that is NOT, what is needed now.

      Endless criticism of the same of National is not enough, it is not policy, does not deliver enough of an alternative.

      Good on Metiria Turei, she held a good, smart, balanced and promising speech, but the real OPPOSITION spokesperson and convincing debater today was Winston Peters!

      Those that still cannot see the problem with Shearer, you will never learn and get it!

      • Benghazi 8.2.1

        We don’t need a challenger Xtasy. Just 13 MPs brave enough to vote no confidence, to give us a vote.

        The process then invites candidates plus the incumbent to step forward to campaign. Show us what they’ve got, their ideas, their style.

        I really would like to hear from Robertson, Adern and Little. I don’t know enough about their potential as Leaders and want to see them strut their stuff.

        What I don’t want is King/Mallard making any more Leadership decisions for us. It is not their right to decide when to knife Shearer and replace him with Robertson.

        Let’s have an honest process now when we’ve time to pull it together and win well in 2014.

        • xtasy 8.2.1.1

          Yeah, those that are equally concerned, phone, email and talk to your MP, secretaries, tell them your concerns, put the clear message accross, that enough is enough.

          It would be insanity to take further risks with the status quo. But then, who am I to talk.

          I saw and heard much of Shearers speech once more in the evening, and it was maybe not quite as bad (less getting stuck and losing the thread of his speech than before), but he just does not come across well, lacks fire, is too wooden, insecure and tries to appear as a kind of person that he is not, and who he never will be able to be.

          Please, please, end this nightmare, Labourites.

  9. Pete 9

    John Key announces more working prisons

    I don’t think slave labour camps are really the direction we want this country going in. Nor do we want prison labour undercutting the wages of free people in this country.

    • bad12 9.1

      Slippery the Prime Minister re-invents the wheel making it square so it sits on the road better, back befor the Neo-liberals decided that there were grand ‘savings’ to be made by canning them there were all sorts of working arrangements for prison inmates, mostly these work initiatives were centered on the needs of the prisons infrastructure from painting and building gangs to full on commercial gardens and farming operations,

      The empty suitcase of intellectual rigor who is masquerading as the New Zealand Prime Minister would better serve the employment in the economy of released prisoners by restricting access to those who have criminal convictions records except where the occupation is sensitive such as hospitals,schools, care positions etc etc etc,

      Most employers these days conduct criminal history checks upon proposed employees including those who only offer day by day labour positions and wont employ anyone with a conviction that is less than ten years old,

      There are a few tho that with deliberation who with deliberation employ ex prison inmates and are mostly rewarded with workers committed to their jobs who work hard and behave in a manner that is a credit to the particular company that hired them…

      • Rogue Trooper 9.1.1

        Yes, i know many close to home who remain unemployed casualties of the no risk employment environment and / or unforgiving moral culture (whats a little overt rebellion compared to white collar fraud?)

        • bad12 9.1.1.1

          Indeed, whats a little white collar crime, the sum total of the fraudulent induced losses coming from the non-banking financial sector in the past 5 years makes the monetary loss of all the crimes committed by those incarcerated over that same 5 year period look insignificant, and, the only thing that comes remotely close to the cost of those fraudulent money transactions in the equation is the cost to the state of locking up the crims,

          The minor ones that is, to coin a phrase, jail is where the big crims send the little crims to get rid of the competition…

    • CV - Real Labour 9.2

      Transparent play to the law and order crowd. Hey lets learn from the US, we can fire local council staff and have prisoners doing the rubbish collection and mowing lawns instead.

      • Murray Olsen 9.2.1

        Maybe prisoners could milk Garth McVicar’s cows. That’d please the anti-immigration crowd as well.

        • bad12 9.2.1.1

          Seriously tho,”as Prime minister my one goal for the year is to get the crims to do a bit of graft”, i often comment on the Prime Ministers empty suitcase of intellectual rigor,

          I think some crim must have run off with it, even for Slippery that was one bizaarely stupid speech…

        • Rogue Trooper 9.2.1.2

          that’s Busting some slapstick humour there Murray

  10. Rogue Trooper 10

    its a monarch day here in the bay and they play play the Silk tree way
    so some (bad kesy) Second-Hand News to keep us amused (won’t ya lay down in the tall grass and let me do my stuff…)
    another 2.5 Billion people at the Arrival gate before 2050, dum dum diddle to be your fiddle , to be so near ya and not just hear ya…
    Obesity an expanding “global pandemic” (Staple that to the fridge)
    antibiotic resistant pathogens a threat “equivalent” to the GFC
    Ak real estate brochures delivered to the living rooms of wealthy Chinese at home; how now
    Brown cow?
    Back to school (1B5’s 30c; $3.00 the remainder of the year);NOvopay, League of Tables do not do Justice, NActional Standards, Christchurch rationalization and the flesh eating scaly one.
    the educational IT divides escalating costs of campus technology integration, software / application licenses multiplying technology scrabbling mathematical illiteracy.
    sadly, North Korean peasants eating their own as Kim continues to swear by the Enema tool of colonialist oppression while kiwis serve as social media guineas.Fine. John Steinbeck-The Pearl
    admire it some time. Oh Joy! c’e st ill cheery picking manufacturing success stories.Press them out.
    Consumption consumption consumption : wuyu- objectless desire.
    WINZ overwhelmed; annual leave, sick leave, vacancies: it’s the dole or 6-6 6 days a week stacking apples for exports down in the Dec quarter; a drop in o / seas Dairy sales of 11.7% (may be churning market though) You choose.
    Crop irrigation diverted to Throwing Copper above ground (Mister 13 tucks his patch under arm, bypassing the third long queue in an hour to front his case manager man (t#@lls better Knock on Wood; don’t get the wrong door though, “Sarge” might growl) Like water.Off a bucks back.

    husband and cultivate the world to ones proclivities and context-

    Vata-wind Ditta- bile Kapha-phlegm
    as the inspirational myriad future is over-run by the phasic powerful present past devoted belonging

    Exploitative hoarding marketing : Receptive?
    Hedonistic respectable ingenious : Authentic?
    Cynical here fatalistic yesterdays relativistic intervals : Believable pathways tomorrow?

    -Kale (Shoot To Thrill: did you know that playing aforementioned track was one attempt at “enhanced interrogation technique” by the screws at Guantanamo? Home on The Range may have been more effective)

    p.s the opposition has NO confidence in lynda Carter Speaking wonderfully for the Family. Hey, for Variety, sponsor a local child in need; kiwi kids are milk bix kids.(in Isolation we may soon only see the Mailman for 1/2 days. Thirteen Monkeys?)

    C.C. yes RL, imagine society without our social conscience (community meals start back soon); it would all be skeptical relativistic intersections (I want my MP3)

    A Song For GeoffC; Topic? What is Collective Anarchism? :)

  11. Tim 11

    OMG (as they say amongst the truly connected). That bloody band of lefties at Radio NZ are at it again! John Quiggin has just been on spouting his bloody communist shite – but NOW there’s some specimen that sounds like a muppet called David Peter Farrar – just to be “fair and balanced” of course.
    Roll on 5pm!

    • Rogue Trooper 11.1

      for some balance, can somebody please release me from moderation (i used the “t” word) when will i learn :(

      • Tim 11.1.1

        I understand your plight. I too sometimes go over the top. I just justify things by telling myself “There Is/Was No Alternative”. When that doesn’t work – I just watch Parliament.

  12. Tim 12

    Hey…..just btw (as they say in the truly connected world)……. now I know where some Slippery Dick comes by his dikshun. Yeee-oooh = “You know” Yearsnaturntiv = “There is no alterative”; RrrrAltee is = “The reality is”
    I’m reverting to Parliament on Chenill Noitnyforwah;

    It’s no wonder a Sikh mate of mine has such duffkilty with Unglish (over and above anywhere esse in the whurrl).

    In any event (Rogue), we can be assured of the muppet status I’ve assigned and plead guilty to

    • Rogue Trooper 12.1

      wellll, that sounds like some pretty damn fine Adobe Flash (there is always an alternative to the Somme) 😉

  13. Pascal's bookie 13

    John Key’s pointless, wandering 2013 opening speech was the straw that finally made my camel lose its shit.

    http://www.ben.geek.nz/2013/01/getting-active/

    lol

  14. Rogue Trooper 14

    Some (bad kesy) Second-Hand News 😉 ;
    another 2.5 billion people at the Arrival gateway before 2050 (dum dum diddle to be your fiddle, to be so near ya and not just hear ya)
    Obesity a “global pandemic”; the 1.6 billion overweight and obese now outnumber the mal-nourished 2-1; The World is Fat-Barry Popkin, meanwhile Mozza’s ill with a bleeding ulcer
    anti-biotic resistant pathogens are a threat equivalent to the GFC
    Ak real estate being marketed to wealthy Chinese at home in their living rooms; how now Brown cow? or year of the snake?
    Back to School- NOvopay, League tables not Justice from the NActional Standards alongside Christchurch rationalization by flesh-eating scaly ones the costs of integrating technology into campuses, software application licenses teacher IT student mathematical illiteracy

    North Korean peasants literally eating their own as Kim swears by the imperialist enema
    kiwis social media guineas.John Steinbeck-The Pearl, give it a whirl.

  15. Dr Terry 15

    Well, we have enjoyed a nice holiday from the ranting John Key but already he is back at it. Very little talk about positive Government proposals of course. Certainly his usual loss of dignity (if ever he had that). Sneering and leering at opposition members (they must be getting under his skin so soon! Good sign!) This is a speech by “a decent bloke”? Spare me!

  16. Rogue Trooper 16

    Oh Joy c’est ill cheerily picking manufacturer anecdotes,
    Consumption consumption consumption : wuyi= objectless desire
    locally WINZ overwhelmed; annual leave, sick leave, vacancies; it’s the dole or 6-6 6 days a week stacking apples. You choose.
    (Mister 13 tucked his patch under his arm and bypassed the third long queue that hour to front his case manager man) Better knock, knock Knock on Wood; don’t get the wrong door now though, “Sarge” might growl.Like Water; off a bucks back.

    Crop irrigation diverted to Throwing Copper above ground.

    husband and cultivate and tailor world to ones proclivities and context

    Vatta-Wind Ditta-Bile Kapha-Phlegm
    inspirational myriad future over-run by the phasic powerful present past devoted belonging

    Exploitative hoarding marketing : Receptive?
    Hedonistic respectable ingenious : Authentic?

    cynicalhere fatalistic yesterdays relativistic intervals : Believable pathways Tommorow?

  17. xtasy 17

    Hooton labeling Standardistas as “fanatics” and “wreckers” of Labour’s November conference:

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/labour-heading-another-meltdown-set-go-weekend-review-lf-134941

    “Internal fanaticism
    This sort of internal fanaticism has been seen before, including when Don Brash’s supporters were undermining Bill English and when Paul Keating took out Bob Hawke. The strategy can work because, as Mr Hawke observed, it has a terrifying logic.

    If a challenger’s faction, even a minority, is utterly determined to make life impossible for the incumbent, then eventually the leadership or even prime ministership ceases to be worth holding.

    Labour’s new rules make the strategy even more likely to succeed and have created a risk of chronic instability. With members and unions now having the power to choose the leader, whichever faction happens to be in the minority will spend its time not taking the fight to the dreaded Tories, but signing up new members and manipulating union personnel.

    The new rules put Labour at constant risk of old-fashioned Leninist entrism. Already, party bosses report infiltration by former members of the Alliance who have no interest in being part of a modern social democratic party but want to recreate Labour as a replica of their old far-left ideal.”

    Well, one has to be mindful and alert about that man, making his odd appearance here.

    So that is what he summarises comments made on TS like!?

    He is an expert manipulator, that is for sure.

  18. Rogue Trooper 18

    feck! (less. sorry ’bout the place taken; Time and Space p-brane difficulties,or maybe some superstring)
    anyway,
    God Defend (foreign investment in) New Zealand; that’s the Key!

    Do(o)m;
    -in the letters; Housing Unaffordability-Banks and Boomers (they said it, not me)
    -China is likely to reinforce the Fijian position with navy vessels, arms and vehicles, yet, were those Israeli jets seen around Fordow? while the NZX50 continues to Aspire 8.

    Pr 11:18 The wicked man earns deceptive wages yet he who sows righteousness reaps a sure reward
    11:25 A generous person will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.

    Alternatively,
    the person who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what they have heard, yet doing it, they will be blessed in what they do.(Religion that God accepts as pure and faultless is this; to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself free from being Polluted by the world)

    -JJ (1:25 & 27; After Midnight, we gonna let it all hang out…for where we find envy and selfish ambition, there you find Disorder and every evil practice)

    • Rogue Trooper 19.1

      True? where do you find these articles joe? 😉

      • joe90 19.1.1

        l

        True? where do you find these articles joe?

        Link farms, Reddit, Metafilter, BoingBoing etc, a voracious appetite and the attention span of a sand fly with a low boredom threshold.

        • Rogue Trooper 19.1.1.1

          “boredom” was a researched topic discussed on RNZ theeuva day; apparently it’s a combination of appropriate stimulation unavailable and, a perceived absence of, and desire for similar. (not my problem; i find this site an adjunct though and it is an alternative meeting of the complete range of human motivations, for a change, particularly curiosity, and there is something healthy about a little idle collective creativity, i think, anyway)
          NOW,
          another topic of research i read recently was contrasting the “happiness” of the financially comfortable and those less so. (of course, a situational / extraneous variable that was Not addressed in the article, MSM, was the cultural context in which “happiness” factors were evaluated). Soooo, not surprisingly, people were “happier” in the Western culture studied if they had more dough.
          Interestingly, Half of New Zealand exists on below the median income, and therefore may be considered (within the premises of the article) to be “less so”. Interesting, but then what would i know, I’m only a mad low-income gardener of Allsorts.

      • Huginn 19.1.2

        Sad but true, Rogue. Welcome to Mega City.

        • Rogue Trooper 19.1.2.1

          I have been invited to write lyrics for, and attempt vocals in a Garage Band, and my mates’ influences, amongst other things? Free Jazz and CrAss (you could not make some of the stuff that happens in our connected / collective lives up! (Unrestful Movements for both of us; just listen for once, just listen to Anti-Trend)
          anyway, from another chapter, was amongst a group of formerly Very bad “perps” last night, who also have seen the “light”, and turning their lives away from The Island /Carousel
          so there is hope.

          -Rem (imagine being on The Radio!)

          • Rogue Trooper 19.1.2.2.1

            you know, and I know, my clone sleeps alone

            -Barker (why dontcha come up and shee me sometime Moneypenny?; in fact, where I reside is another menage a trois of “connections” (never been that greedy, or lucky, in the literal sense, yet regrettably got a little too greedy one-to-one, but that too, is another story)

  19. bad12 20

    The real question to be asked of the Slippery Prime Minister after today’s ‘State of the Nation’ speech in the Parliament today is did He change His diapers befor or after the childish harangue of the Opposition Party’s,

    The opening speech in the Parliamentary Year is a traditional opportunity for the Prime Minister to outline His or Her plans for the year and yet in what i detect as a display of fear our current one Slippery, chose instead at the last minute to drop the prepared speech notes in favor of a torrent of abuse directed at that opposition,

    Don’t let the apparent confidence of the Prime Minister fool you for an instant, any Prime Minister who allows one simple opposition policy, in this case the twin housing policies of the Green/Labour portion of that opposition, to derail a prepared speech has definitely not only lost the political initiative ‘going forward’ but has also lost the ‘plot’ bigtime,

    In another severely bizaare move by the Prime Minister,(possibly sniffing a knife in the back on the breeze), is the inclusion in the National MP’s ranks of a 3rd ‘party whip’, larger politicla party’s usually have two of these whips to organize their MP’s around their duties to the Select Committees and their duties in the House along with any other business the particular Party requires them to attend to,

    Why have 3 whips tho, simple , there has since Slippery the Prime Minister took over the leadership of that National Party been a simmering but unreported tension within the Caucus between two basic camps,(the Slippery’s and the Other’s), over the Leadership of National, there’s a few schisms within these camps over who will get to plunge the knife into the back of the current Prime Minister at the appropriate time and such a boiling tension in the ranks is simply the moving of the pawns in the quest for Power as opposed to the tensions within the Labour Opposition Party which center more on direction and policy,

    The extra whip??? in the political trade-offs between the two National Party factions the Cabinet make-up has largely become a finely balanced one for me and one for the Other’s juggling by the Prime Minister doling out the positions of power so as to delay that inevitable knifing from within His own ranks,

    Having miscalculated in the sacking of 2 Cabinet Ministers,( it aint Merril Lynch Slippery, they still get to hang around after you’ve crapped all over them from a great height), Slippery the prime Minister has belatedly He has handed the Other’s a surprise advantage and tipped the delicate balance of power that exists in that National Party Caucus hence the hastily arranged 3rd ‘whips’ job dragging yet another Slippery-ite into the already bulging power structure who’s very position now depends upon His support of the current Prime Minister, balance is restored,

    What tho to make of the theatrics of a clearly fearful Prime Minister in the chamber today lashing out at the opposition on a day that should have had Him proudly trumpeting the National Governments successes so far and outlining it’s ongoing plan for success, ( yes ha ha ha i am of course being facetious), what of a Government that according to the Prime Minister has a plan to push a few of the 8000 crims currently languishing in our jails into a bit of graft,

    Thats it???? apparently so if the words of the Prime Minister are anything to go by, everything is just so hunky dory according to this particular Prime Minister, there is no crisis in affordable housing that need be urgently addressed, no crisis of unemployment that cannot wait until November 2014 when someone else can address it, neither a last quarter export data report that shows that instead of growing the country’s exports in the last quarter were the worst since 2009,

    Nothing, not an iota of any pressing economic concern expressed, nary a care in the world shown for pressing societal issues while well meaning middle class New Zealanders set up Save the Children type websites so that the average New Zealander can sponsor Kiwi-kids an effort worthy of the third world,

    Bluntly, all that was contained in this the 4th ‘State of the Nation’ speech by this Slippery Prime Minister of this FAILURE of a National Government was a silent admission that They havn’t got a clue, don’t really give a s**t anyway, and the face as the Head of this unholy mess is quite frankly more worried about being knifed in the back by His colleagues than anything else going on at the moment,

    Wonder if His diapers are of the disposable variety, i just can’t imagine the abject horror inflicted upon the poor serf having to wash out the stench of such fear…

    • Rogue Trooper 20.1

      better than a bad Stuff. carry on weeding, I find it therapeutic, and then, then, productive plants can grow.

    • Jackal 20.2

      I’m not too sure about your 3rd whip theory but there’s certainly some truth to Key completely changing the script to focus on insulting the opposition parties for daring to have some solutions while National looks totally dead in the water.

      Not only does the fact that Key let his emotions get the better of him look entirely pathetic, he threw some in the press gallery right off their stride and their usual towing of the party line. Some even went ahead and published their pre-written articles based on Key’s script that of course didn’t include any of Keys venomous diatribe, which just goes to show how stupid some right wing journalists can be.

      Clearly National is bereft of ideas, and we have only just begun the 2013 cycle. If attack politics is all that the venal John Key is going to offer the public while the country slides ever further into economic and social decline, let’s just cut to the chase now and declare the 2014 election won for the left… Because if Key doesn’t show some actual leadership on some very pressing issues very soon, National is done and dusted.

      Of course the right wing propagandists are declaring Keys pathetic display of juvenile taunts a huge success, all the while knowing full well that their jabbering fool of a “leader” simply doesn’t have what it takes to rally the troops behind him, and what a sad pathetic lot of sycophantic troops they are… You would find more cheer on a chain gang.

  20. I have read Brian Edwards take on Shearer and i agree with his opinion.
    There was a jump in the polls when Shearer sent Cunliffe to the backbenches, there must
    be some very blood thirsty voters out there who are happy to see someone publicly denounced
    in such a fashion and without merit or sound reason.
    Is this what we have come down to? are these the levels that some find some comfort in, within
    the wider Labour electorate ? a party that prided itself on being inclusive,caring,respectable,
    apparantley those traits no longer exsist, perhaps.
    If so many don’t see Shearer as the leader of labour,then why is that feeling not put to the
    test, members of caucus should think long and hard whether they endorse Shearer
    or not in the secret ballot and put their personal aspriations aside and vote in accordance with many in the wider electorate that consider Shearer is not the right person for the job.
    To ignore the electorate and members is a folly and irresponsible, the ball is in the mp’s
    court.

  21. Draco T Bastard 22

    CEO: An over-paid bureaucrat, usually in the private sector, working against the good of society.

  22. Rogue Trooper 23

    Afewknowmanytruths
    http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/blacksabbath/afterforever.html
    just foolin’ around
    night (it’s another day tomorrow) :)

    p.s thanks for the “bread” D.

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     Today’s final decision by the Tukituki Catchment Board of Inquiry is good news for the river and the environment, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri. “Setting a strict level of dissolved nitrogen in the catchment’s waters will ensure that the… ...
    6 days ago
  • Minister for Women and National missing the mark – part two
    The Minister for Women was in front of the select committee yesterday answering questions about her plans for women. Some useful context is that we used to have a Pay and Employment Equity Unit within the then Department of Labour… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    6 days ago
  • Lavish penthouse spend confirms culture of extravagance
    At the same time thousands of New Zealanders are being locked out of the property market, the Government is spending up on a lavish New York penthouse for its diplomats, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. News that taxpayers… ...
    6 days ago
  • Māori Television exodus cause for concern
    The shock departure of yet another leading journalist from the Native Affairs team raises further concern the Board and Chief Executive are dissatisfied with the team’s editorial content, says Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “Annabelle Lee is an experienced… ...
    6 days ago
  • Million-plus car owners to pay too much ACC
    More than a million car owners will pay higher ACC motor vehicle registration than necessary from July, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “During a select committee hearing this morning it was revealed that car owners would have been charged… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill will restore democracy to local councils
    A new Labour Member’s Bill will restore democracy to local authorities and stop amalgamations being forced on councils. Napier MP Stuart Nash’s Local Government Act 2002 (Greater Local Democracy) Bill will be debated by Parliament after being pulled from the… ...
    6 days ago
  • Minister for Women again misses the mark – part one
    Yesterday I asked the Minister for Women about the government’s poor performance on it’s own target of appointing women to 45% of state board positions. I challenged why she’d put out a media release celebrating progress this year when the… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    6 days ago
  • Banks enter Dragon’s Den in pitch for Government’s mental health experi...
    Overseas banks and their preferred providers were asked to pitch their ideas for bankrolling the Government’s social bonds scheme to a Dragon’s Den-style panel, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. Dragon’s Den was a reality television series where prospective ‘entrepreneurs’… ...
    7 days ago
  • Global Mode bullying won’t stop people accessing content
    It’s disappointing that strong-arm tactics from powerful media companies have meant Global Mode will not get its day in court. Today a settlement was reached terminating the Global Mode service, developed in New Zealand by ByPass Network Services and used… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    7 days ago
  • More questions – why was the Former National Party President involved wit...
    Today in Parliament Murray  McCully said the reason Michelle Boag was involved in 2011 in the Saudi farm scandal was in her capacity as a member of the New Zealand Middle East Business Council. The problem with that answer is… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister must explain Maori TV interference
    Te Ururoa Flavell must explain why he told Maori TV staff all complaints about the CEO must come to him – months before he became the Minister responsible for the broadcaster, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Sources have told… ...
    1 week ago
  • KiwiSaver takes a hammering after the end of kick-start
    National seems hell bent on destroying New Zealand’s saving culture given today’s news that there has been a drop in new enrolments for KiwiSaver, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “New enrolments for the ANZ Investments KiwiSaver scheme have plunged… ...
    1 week ago
  • Straight answers needed on CYF role
    The Government needs to explain the role that Child, Youth and Family plays in cases where there is evidence that family violence was flagged as a concern, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Arden says. “The fact that CYF is refusing to… ...
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister confuses his political interests with NZ’s interest
    The Prime Minister’s statement in Parliament yesterday that a Minister who paid a facilitation payment to unlock a free trade agreement would retain his confidence is an abhorrent development in the Saudi sheep scandal, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.  ...
    1 week ago
  • #raisethequota
    Last Saturday was World Refugee Day. I was privileged to spend most of my day with the amazing refugee communities in Auckland. Their stories have been inspiring and reflect the ‘can-do’ Kiwi spirit, even though they come from all different… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Dairy conversions causing more pollution than ever, report shows
    The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) released two reports on freshwater quality and management last Friday. The water quality report shows that dairy conversions are hurting water quality and says that despite great efforts with fencing and planting, large… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • Employers want urgent action on health and safety
    Moves by National to water down health and safety reforms have been slammed by employers – the very group the Government claims is pushing for change, says Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Relations Iain Lees-Galloway. “The Employers and Manufacturers’ Association has… ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour calls on all parties to end coat-tailing
    Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway is encouraging all parties to support his Bill to end the coat-tailing provision when it is debated in Parliament this week.  “New Zealanders have sent MPs a clear message. An opinion poll found more than 70… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government social sector reforms
    I’ve written previously about the major shake-up that is happening in the provision of government and community services. Yesterday, the Minister of Social Development spoke publically about what these reforms are likely to look like within MSD. There are major… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • PM must explain Saudi sheep scandal backflips
    John Key’s explanations of the Saudi sheep scandal continue to be riddled with inconsistencies and irreconcilable backflips, Labour’s Trade Spokesperson David Parker says. “Either he has been misled by his Minister Murray McCully or the Prime Minister is deliberately obfuscating… ...
    1 week ago
  • Independent investigation needed into claims scientists gagged
    Steven Joyce must launch an independent investigation into claims that scientists are being gagged, says Labour’s Science and Innovation spokesperson David Cunliffe. “When 40 percent of scientists say they are being gagged and can’t speak out on issues of public… ...
    1 week ago
  • Swamp kauri mining and exports should stop
    Seeing swamp kauri mining for the first time this week was a shock. Dark peaty soil had been stripped of its plant cover and giant excavators were digging into wet, swampy soil to unearth logs that had been buried for… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • MSD going down wasteful spending track
    The Ministry of Social Development is paying big salaries and forking out hundreds of thousands of dollars on management courses while at the same time looking to hand some services over to a multinational outsourcing company with an appalling track… ...
    1 week ago
  • South Auckland housing meeting highlights stark realities
    The stark realities of life for South Aucklanders in substandard Housing New Zealand and private rental homes were fully exposed at a South Auckland housing meeting today, Labour’s MP for Manukau East Jenny Salesa says. “Local people generously shared their… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The Pope, the scientists, and the diplomats: getting there on the climate ...
    The Pope’s Encyclical on the climate: ‘On Care for Our Common Home’, has finally been released. Evoking St Francis before him, the Pope reminds us that “our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life, and… ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Green Party supports Gifted Kids Awareness Week 2015
    Providing high quality teaching that caters to the specific needs of every child is an enormous challenge, but there is no investment more rewarding for society. Gifted Awareness Week gives us a chance to think about how diverse the needs… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Truck sellers still getting away with rip-offs
    The Government has admitted its brand new lending rules are already inadequate, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesman David Shearer. “Gaping holes in the Responsible Lending Code – which came into effect this month -- mean the vulnerable will not be… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government Screws the Lid Down On Raw Milk Access
    The Government’s raw milk policy announced yesterday will make it more difficult for many consumers to access the quality product of their choice, and may even be setting up the raw milk sector to fail. The Government, in its paranoia… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Operation Desert Storm
    Blaming Saudi sand storms for the deaths of 70 per cent of Kiwi lambs born on a model farm meant to showcase New Zealand agricultural expertise is another part of the ludicrous attempt to disguise buying the cooperation of a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister, your expensive slip is showing
    A Minister's comments at a press conference in Dunedin today show just how easily costs can blow out at the Southern DHB, Labour's Acting Health spokesman David Clark says. "Fresh from criticising everyone from members of the Board that his… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bridges of Northland on backburner
    Transport Minister Simon Bridges today admitted no progress has been made towards his Northland by-election bribe of 10 new bridges and could only say they would be funded sometime in the next six years, Labour's transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says.… ...
    2 weeks ago

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