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Pokies: the crack cocaine of gambling

Written By: - Date published: 10:09 am, April 21st, 2012 - 111 comments
Categories: capitalism, class war, crime - Tags: , ,

A sad story in the Herald today of a man who got hooked on pokies. He spent all his money on them at pubs and SkyCity. Started borrowing from family and partners. Destroyed those relationships. Now lives in a car despite his large income. Started taking deposits from clients and not doing the work.

Don’t listen to the shills* who say ‘what’s the harm in the few more machines’? SkyCity wouldn’t want more machines if it wouldn’t get more business because of them. SkyCity’s boss wants more pokies because “if you come here on a Wednesday night [pay day] or a Friday night, the property is full… We clearly want to expand our business. There is clearly demand for it”

Key wants to let these scumbags addict more people to their gambling machines. They want to profit from destroying more lives, fueling more crime, and we get some shitty convention centre that won’t even pay for itself in return.

What’s next? An opera house built by drug dealers in exchange for our very own Hamsterdam?

This shit can still be stopped. The Government only has a one vote majority on this. John Banks, who is known to oppose gambling having seen what crime did to his family growing up, can vote against this dirty deal and save families from the experience he went through.

And the opposition needs to get stuck in too. They need to make clear that any legislative favours that National gives SkyCity will be reversed as a matter of priority in 2014/15. They also should take a leaf from the South Australian Treasurer, who responded to SkyCity’s ‘convention centre for law changes’ offer there by telling them they were “dreaming” and threatening to repeal their gambling licence.

The Greens and Labour need to not just oppose SkyCity’s expansion but to ask themselves why SkyCity’s cancer should be allowed to exist at all in the heart of our cities.

*(and how many of those shills are being paid by SkyCity, like Mike Hosking, or given special treatment as VIPs, or have other conflicts of interest, like Paul Holmes?)

PS. it turns out the 800 jobs promised by SkyCity from the white elephant convention centre is grossly inflated – twice what the larger centre in Melbourne employs and four times what other bidders said they would employ.

111 comments on “Pokies: the crack cocaine of gambling”

  1. Kevin 1

    Just another example of Herald tabloidism… This story has obviously been written by someone interviewing their keyboard. Not a single fact anywhere – a figment of someone’s imagination!

    [are you really claiming that the whole story was invented? If so, you should back up your talk and complain to the Press Council. Eddie]

  2. freedom 2

    “John Banks, who is known to oppose gambling having seen what crime did to his family growing up, can vote against this dirty deal and save families from the experience he went through.”

    see that’s what the world needs, optimism !!

    (w/respect to the Zet )

  3. aerobubble 3

    Just to be clear here, John Key has been rewarded by past law that removed the pollution of communities caused by pokies, and he is now setting the precedent that he can repollute by selling the option to pollute (pokies to Sky Cty).

    Every activist who wins a cause be warned, its not the first time Key has gone back on good faith understandings (e.g. mining). Key must be made to understand that increasing pokies and redirecting pokey profits to private investors, is directly opposed to the will of the people who want less pokies and money that does come from them directed to community causes.

    With National they will go back on what the community decides, often directly targeting those aims of communities, because there is ‘value’ accrued by virtue of the efforts of those communities. National take grassroots democracy and destroy their effectiveness by monetizing the benefit those grass roots groups have created.

    Welcome to the vulture capitalism party. e.g. Farmers grow the best of the best dairying industry in the world, Key and National target this profitable center and open the doors right up and down the dairy industry chain, from foreigners owning farmland, to lock stock and fully take over of Fonterra where rich land owners (some foriegn) who can buy debt of other Fonterra farmers.

    National represent the people who make profits from others labour by raiding companies, and nations, and stripping the assets to sell to the market, they represent the 100% investor party who never have to worry about pollution, debt, global warming, etc, because they just shift their fat weight over to the next hole in the dyke and wait to sell off the leak for a profit.

  4. Ed 4

    There have been comments about a lower proportion of amounts bet going towards taxes or community charities from casino pokie machines than from other pokie machines in local communities. Does anyone have a reference for that? Simple fairness suggests that the percentages should be the same; and that those community trusts also be totally independent of the operators of the machines.

    If Sky do not comply with their side of the deal regarding the creation of the promised jobs perhaps it would be reasonable for the number of licences to then be reduced.

    The discrepancy in staffing levels should have rung alarm bells with the public servants assessing the bids – or are lies able to be bought off for them as well?

    • freedom 4.1

      off the top of my head community trusts have to pay 37%, casino pays only 2.7 % ?

      • Treetop 4.1.1

        I have not once heard from Key’s mouth that the 2.5% that Sky City pay in community grants will be increaded to 37% which all bars with pokie machines payout in community grants.

        Pokie machines are the P (methamphetamine) of gambling, crack cocaine is not as addictive as P.

        Key’s policy is pushing P in the community.

        Will Banks have the backbone to stand up to Key when it comes to creating more hardened pokie addicts?

        Note: It is my view that pokie machines in casinos create more hardened pokie addicts as in a local bar the max bet is $2.50 a spin and the max spin limit is much higher in a casino.

        Does anyone know what the max spin bet on a casino pokie machine is?

      • The Baron 4.1.2

        This keeps coming up. My understanding, and I have no references, is that SkYCity pays the same 37% off pokie machines as everyone else; but because pokies are a small part of their business, the percentage drops against the entire gambling revenues SC brings in.
        On that basis, this could well be apples for apples – just that charities see nothing from the Blackjack/Roulette/Poker tables etc. Someone could probably check all this rather easily – I simply can’t be assed.
        For clarity, this isn’t any apologise from me. Casinos are more trouble than they’re worth, AFAIC.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.1.2.1

          Casinos are more trouble than they’re worth, AFAIC.

          Well, that’s something we agree about.

        • Treetop 4.1.2.2

          I cannot find a link to support my statement but I wrote this down the other day when I heard it on the 6 pm news. Sky City give 2.5% profit back to the community or 0.8% of revenue. Gaming trusts give 37% of revenue back to the community. Sky City have a sweetheart tax deal and there are a number of links to support this statement.

          • The Baron 4.1.2.2.1

            If you’re referring to the discrepancy between 2.5 and 37% as a sweetheart deal, then as I’ve pointed out above you may be incorrect.
            There’s plenty not to like about this. Don’t do the argument a disservice by being lazy and jumping at things that may not stack up. Outrage only really works when you’re solid on your facts.

            • freedom 4.1.2.2.1.1

              here is the very first google search result for “skycity 2.5%”
              http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1204/S00212/deeply-unpopular-skycity-deal-may-involve-425-new-pokies.htm

              ” while other New Zealander providers of pokie machines are required to give approximately 37% of their takings to the government’s New Zealand Lotteries Commission to be given to charity, SKYCITY pays just 2.5% of its net profit to the private Sky City Auckland Charitable Trust.”

              Scoop’s integrity in reporting facts can hardly be questioned.

              Since it came up, What does SkyCity Auckland Charitable Trust do with all that money?

              since the opening date, February 2, 1996, the trust has donated the approximately $25 Million to 1300-1550 different charities and organisations. I say approximately because based on the Trust’s own website they themselves seem a bit confused.
              http://www.skycityauckland.co.nz/About-Us/Community.html
              http://www.skycityauckland.co.nz/About-Us/Community.html

              [$25 million] is certainly a lot of money over fifteen years, almost $2million per annum. Put against their paltry annual revenue of roughly $400 million we can see why they can only afford to pay 2.5%.

              • The Baron

                You’re missing the point. It’s really not that complicated.
                SC can still be paying the same 37% on pokies AND 2.5% on their overall. This is because their business is far more diversified than pokies.
                Do you know that that isn’t the case?

                • Treetop

                  I have not misunderstood your question. I rewatched part of The Nation this morning and Garner referred to the 2.5 and 37% being a tax. Then he made a comment that Sky City could be asked to pay the same. I am assuming that Sky City pay 2.5% tax on pokie machines and community trusts pay 37% on pokie machines as the profit Sky City makes appears to be coming from pokie machines.

                  May be Key can clarify “SC can still be paying the same 37% on pokies AND 2.5% on their overall.”

                  I would also like to ask Key how much the max spin bet will be on just one extra Sky City pokie machine?

                  A non casino pokie machine max spin bet is $2.50 and a casino pokie machine max spin bet is $100 (possibly more) or 40 non casino machines make $100 per max spin compared to 1 casino machine makes $100 per max spin.

                  I agree with you on how important the actual facts are and that they need to be known.

            • seeker 4.1.2.2.1.2

              @The Baron

              Try this link to back up Treetop’s comment concerning the 2.5% v 37%. Skycity does not pay the same as others as it is not a charity. It is its own “charity” and it’s profits go to it’s
              beneficiary shareholders apparently.

              http://ondemand.tv3.co.nz/Campbell-Live-Thursday-April-19-2012/tabid/119/articleID/6232/MCat/73/Default.aspx

              • seeker

                Sorry Baron, didn’t add to my above TV3 Campbell Live link that the section concerning the pokies starts at about 7mins 20secs.. in.

              • Treetop

                Thank you for posting the link. I am on dial up so I did not check this as a source even though I knew I heard the info on the link.

                Everyone is entitled to have an opinion and to debate it or have it challenged.

        • lprent 4.1.2.3

          Casinos are more trouble than they’re worth, AFAIC.

          That is a first – we agree on something :twisted:

    • bad12 4.2

      ”The discrepancy in staffing levels should have rung alarm bells with the public servants assessing the bids-or are lies able to be bought off for them as well”?,

      Ed, good question,the answer= our Prime Minister Slippery by His own admission told the ‘public servants’ tasked to assess the efficacy of a ‘convention center’ to cease work upon the project,

      So,the ‘public servant’ at the center of all of this then became the Prime Minister and His office,I have forgotten the name of the particular individual,a close member of the Prime Ministers 9th floor staff who also has close and deep personal links to those who manage the Skycity New Zealand casino,but, it is obvious that between Him and our Slippery Prime Minister the present ‘deal’ was concocted,

      As to being ‘bought’ off over the lies so far told, I have no evidence of anyone having as yet discovered the money trail and could hardly comment until such time as that money trail is found…

  5. Rodel 5

    Is JK’s attitude..’Nuthing wrong wif gamblin’ is there? i’m r’laxed ’bout it an’ i got rich doin’ it di’nt I?
    Wassa problim?

    • Johnm 5.1

      Rodel
      Key made his dinero pile gambling as a currency speculator for the Ponzi outfit Merrill Lynch in the completely financially unregulated London office.
      London, The City, is infamous for its lack of any control over shady , insider, manipulative scam finance.

  6. RedLogix 6

    The booze barons, the ciggy killers, the money-men and gambling goons.. despicable parasites all of them. Why mince around ‘legalities’… these people get fat off the misery of others. Scum.

    As is our Prime Minister who cuts fat insider deals with them.

    • DH 6.1

      Yep. Our gambling laws were put there for a reason and unless the reasons are no longer valid then there’s no justification in changing them. It’s noticeable that Key & his corrupt mob haven’t even addressed the law & why it’s there.

      Much of Sky City’s restrictions revolved around their monopoly casino right which is also entrenched in our law. This is just giving them more monopoly rights to fleece people.

      This particular Convention centre is all about benefiting Sky City, they’re the ones who plan to rake in most of this promised extra tourist spending. It’s not just the pokies, everything in the design of their centre will be aimed at channeling convention business into the casino. They’ll incorporate easy access walkways to the casino in the building design, big windows facing the casino where neon signs catch the attention, signs & promotions everywhere, the usual marketing tricks that subtly nudge people towards their den of iniquity.

  7. ianmac 7

    Two things.
    1. If the pokie machines were off the table would there still be the huge concern?

    2. The Key interview with John Campbell last night on Campbell Live was a big surprise to me. Key dropped all pretence of mumbling, mis-speaking, dissembling and put his position forcefully and persistently. (He pointed to the same case being laid out in 2009 and no one had even noticed.)

    I am confused but adamantly against selling the law and against pokies.

    • Treetop 7.1

      I watched The Nation this morning on TV 3, (repeated at 8 am tomorrow). I also saw the Key Campbell interview last night. Key did not front on The Nation (the Sky City deal and how implicated Key is was discussed at length). Shearer also was interviewed and the best by far I have seen of him in front of the camera.

      1. The huge concern is increasing pokie addicts and any cost to the government for the build of the convention centre, (never mind the cost of new much more hardened addicts). Shearer does not want a change in the casino laws, he wants a retendering process of a national convention centre and for pokie machines to be decreased further in the community.

      2. In 2009 I doubt that Key let slip that Sky City has been to the District Court and High Court over 80 times due to restrictions in the Gambling Act. I need to check if 500 pokie machines were mentioned in 2009 and not just tweaking the law. Key says that pokie machines have been reduced in the community by several thousand but he does not say that the max spin bet on a casino pokie machine is $100 and possibly more.

      I wonder how many times Sky City have been to the District Court or High Court regarding restrictions in the Gaming Act since their meetings with Key?

      • DH 7.1.1

        Re 2. It was reported that Sky City haven’t taken any more court action from the day National got into power. Not sure how true that is but it would be very interesting to see a timeline graph of their court actions.

        • deuto 7.1.1.1

          Treetop and DH, I have just searched out the Herald article on this aspect that I recalled seeing earlier in the week, as IMO this is an important aspect to this whole dirty deal. As DH says, according to the Herald, Sky City have taken no court action since 2009 – ”

          Sky City wooed government after court failures”

          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/index.cfm?objectid=10799633

          • DH 7.1.1.1.1

            Ta. This bit tells it all….

            “But the courts found the casino’s argument went against the intent of the law, which forbade any increase in opportunities for gambling.”

            Like all of our laws it has an intent and Key has thrown that intent out the window for a few pieces of silver. This really is dangerous territory for NZ IMO.

          • Treetop 7.1.1.1.2

            “SkyCity has not filed a court challenge since the National Government came to power in 2008.”

            Source link in 7.1.1.1 above

            I have to ask myself why not?

            It would not be in the interest of Sky City to bring attention to itself when meeting with politicians to negotiate/influence changes in the Gambling Act.

            For every pokie machine that is taken out of the community and added to Sky City, the damage of a Sky City pokie machine is 40 machines to one in the community.

            Community machine max bet is $2.50.
            Sky City machine max is $100. (Possibly even more).
            100 Sky City machines = 4000 community machines.
            You do the math on 200, 300, 400, 500 Sky City machines.

            Profit going back to the community is reduced by 34.5% if the 2.5 and 37% figures are used which community trusts get.

            Key has commented about Labour being soft on gambling. Drongo talk.

      • Treetop 7.1.2

        Correction in 7.1 paragraph 3 required on line 1. Sky City has been to the NZ Gambling Commission and not the District or High Court 86 times due to restrictions in the Gambling Act.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      2. The Key interview with John Campbell last night on Campbell Live was a big surprise to me. Key dropped all pretence of mumbling, mis-speaking, dissembling and put his position forcefully and persistently.

      When you’ve got your line memorised then it’s easy to say them forcefully and persistently. The thing that I noticed about that interview is that he didn’t have a single argument in favour of his position.

      • ianmac 7.2.1

        DTB.I guess on top of the Casino thing, there is the difference of persona. Sure Key had his lines memorised but his fluency was a huge change from those awful deliveries of set speeches and the fuzzy rambling of previous so called interviews. Wolf in sheep’s clothing by his previous deliveries?
        It does present him as a ruthless personality rather than an amiable friendly guy next door. Dunno.

        • seeker 7.2.1.1

          I think Cambell got the full -frontal -Forex trader/sales man treatment. Horrible to watch in it’s mesmerising, caught like a possum in the head lights, mind stunning while being manipulated by a horrendous and probably corrupting seduction effect. Even you were confused Ianmac.

          http://www.3news.co.nz/John-Key-on-the-Crafar-farm-and-Sky-City-deals/tabid/367/articleID/251223/Default.asp

          Campbell did try to fight back early on in the interview when Key tried to say that Kiwis did not want the Crafar deal because they didn’t like the Chinese. Campbell tried to stop Key on this saying this was not true, it was foreign ownership Kiwis did not like and to say otherwise was “underhand and disingenuous” . Key stopped for a second to say he wasn’t being underhand and disingenuous and than carried on, in his well rehearsed reasonable, “trader/dealer tone “, to be ……..underhand and disingenuous, by repeating his scripted mantra that Kiwis did not like the Chinese. After that it was full steam ahead on the “get them to believe you and trust you at any cost, then exploit them ” Key express.

          Campbell had tried to stop Key earlier when key tried to obfusticate and imply that if his Government had not taken the Crafar deal they would have been breaking the law! BUT,Cambell missed a beat, tried to head him off at the “underhand” point above and failed! It was down hill all the way after that. The ‘pokie’ questions gathered no moss.

          Moral of this sad tale of ‘the dealer that got away’- don’t let them get away with even the tiniest detail- question, pursue, question,follow up, pursue, and demand answers and don’t let them get away with a script. (Mike Hosking did this well once – ironic, considering his links to SkyCity!)
          Slippery people need to be impaled on a truth stick.

          • Uturn 7.2.1.1.1

            Key’s best argument seemed to be that because Campbell and the media in general was crap at their job and didn’t pull him up in 2009, it was ok for Key to do as he pleased now. Classic Godwin stuff.

  8. Nick K 8

    Zetetic thinks the convention centre will be a white elephant. So what? It’s Sky City’s money, and its shareholders. If you think it’s gonna lose money hand over fist then don’t buy shares in Sky City and don’t use it. I’ll tell you what is a white elephant – Kiwi Rail. Purchased by Michael Cullen for an grossly inflated amount. The convention centre is using no public money. Why are you against a shark like Sky City losing money? If it loses money it might go out of business and then there are no pokies.

    [Another damaged RWNJ fuckwit who doesn’t understand the difference between book value and market value. ..RL]

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      The convention centre is using no public money.

      The taxpayers will be the ones paying to clean up the mess that SkyCity creates so, yes, it will be using public money – just not directly.

    • infused 8.2

      Fuckwit… such good manners there RL. Leading by example again.

      • RedLogix 8.2.1

        The “Cullen paid too much for Kiwirail’ is a perenial RWNJ fuckwit argument that has been trashed over and again. I feel no need to waste good manners on it.

        • infused 8.2.1.1

          Maybe, but at the same time, you are trashing this place too. I don’t understand why a considerable number of mods/admins/whatever here feel the need to do this, when they tell people not to do it.

          Case of do what I say, not what I do.

          [ Your concern is duely noted…RL]

          [lprent: You still haven’t read the policy yet have you? Here, I will help your hapless arse out..

          We encourage robust debate and we’re tolerant of dissenting views. But this site run for reasonably rational debate between dissenting viewpoints and we intend to keep it operating that way.

          What we’re not prepared to accept are pointless personal attacks, or tone or language that has the effect of excluding others.

          Where in there does it say that we want to conform to your twee manners? Just because you are a fool who wants to hide behind some kind of fake politeness does not mean that the rest of us are required to follow your dickhead ways.

          And that is for commentators. Moderators are explicitly told to be quite immoderate if they have to expend effort on someone. That especially applies for arguments that are raised that have been endlessly raised before, refuted, and are generally used by morons who are too dumb to realize that repetition is not the answer to everything. They just cause flamewars and the standard way to fight any fire is to firebreak it. In a blog setting that is pointing out that it isn’t tolerated. ]

  9. Treetop

    I agree with you on Shearer’s performance on TV.

    But if that’s the best he can do somebody should get hold of him and show him how to handle it.
    He can do better I’m sure.
    Please, he has got to, to show himself as the next New Zealand Prime Minister.

  10. infused 10

    Key murdered Campbell last night.

    • RedLogix 10.1

      Because he knew he was fighting for his political life.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.2

      He failed to make any valid points while talking over Campbell. In fact, he brought up the false argument of racism again despite that this has been proven wrong several times.

      • seeker 10.2.1

        @Infused

        “Key murdered Campbell last night”

        Not just Campbell but the entire country with his profligacy. He has to go -or go and be treated for
        his ‘Prime Ministerial dysfunctional behaviour’ condition.

  11. Dave G 11

    It seems suddenly, readers and the Journo’s want the Government to BAN anything that MIGHT cause personal harm through the choices one makes.

    This gentleman could have simply sought help, turned off the internet, stayed home, and stopped. Hard yes, but achievable, compared to those with cancer, and heart disease etc etc.

    There is something called personal responsibility, its about taking care of ones own destiny, something the bleeding lefties seem to forget. Lets look at the overall benefit to NZ and the community froth convention centre and a few more Pokies, remembering there care still LESS than under the Clark led Labour government- its bloody massive, 1000 Jobs under construction, almost $100 mill every year, international exposure, and many more benefits for the hundreds of small businesses than supply goods and services to the Convention centre in construction, tourism, hospitality, services, food, cleaning etc etc………. The list goes on and on.

    If the Standard and left leaning Journo’s take this to the extreme, we would ban all cars, as someone might get hurt, someone might suffer. We would be far better spending the effort over this person, on helping a cancer sufferer, or the elderly. No one has complained yet, this convention centre is likely to serve alcohol, and MY GOD, there could be a car crash from that, someone might be injured. Yes, its a possibility.

    Please – find the guy, offer him a hand, and others like them. Move him to Ruatoria, or Nightcaps, no internet, mobile phone etc, and give him a crossword to do every day. Might improve his grasp of the english language as well.

    • RedLogix 11.1

      Like all right wingers you’re big on personal repsonsibility when your talking about other people’s problems.

      The casino makes money ultimately off the loss and misery of others. They happily take big big bucks off these people… but as always are very silent on taking responsibility for the consequences of their own actions.

      • Dave G 11.1.1

        No, they DO NOT take the money of them, these people GIVE their money readily, as they take a calculated risk.

        FYI I am not right wing, i actually have supported labour in the past, but can’t abide by either poor leadership (which labour have suffered from for years) or those who want a nanny state to look after anything and everything while they drink smoke and gamble themselves to deaths door. Illness is one thing, addiction is another.

        • RedLogix 11.1.1.1

          Well I’ll take your word about not being a rightie then. In my world if you make money off doing something, then you are responsible for the consequences… intended or otherwise.

          Many years ago I dated a woman who was a perfectly responsible and capable person, with her own home, family and professional career. By no stretch could you describe her as a ‘weak-willed loser’… quite the opposite I dare say.

          But one evening out she as we entered a pub she told me quite clearly that if I found that later that she was in front of one of the pokie machines in the side-room… I was to absolutely strong-arm her out of the place. Fortunately it didn’t come to it that evening, but for her it was a risk she was going to have to live with the rest of her life. She loathed the sodding things and everything to do with them.

          And yes, like almost all addicts, she hadn’t gotten to that point of responsibility without hitting rock-bottom first.

          But of course the owners and operators of these vile machines NEVER take any effective responsibility for the consequences of what THEY are doing. They hide behind the exact same argument you are using Dave.

        • joe90 11.1.1.2

          these people GIVE their money readily,

          Oh really, their money?.

    • Colonial Viper 11.2

      There is something called personal responsibility, its about taking care of ones own destiny, something the bleeding lefties seem to forget.

      I’d like to see the Board and senior management of SkyCity take some personal responsibility for the den of misery they run.

      When’s that going to happen, buddy?

    • Treetop 11.3

      Dave G you are correct in saying that there are now less pokie machines about than when Clark was PM. May be this is part of the plan to dupe the public in order for Key to get a national convention centre paid for by Sky City. In my above post 7.1.1.1.2 I point out that one casino pokie machine is = to 40 non casino pokie machines. I am left thinking how far back the Sky City deal with the government may have been raised as Sky City have not filed any court action to increase gambling at Sky City since the National Government were elected in 2008.

  12. unpcnzcougar 12

    Out of the tens of thousands of people who go through the casino every year, exactly how many are addicts? Can someone answer this. And will 500 more machines create more or will the number of addicts remain the same?

    The benefit of having SkyCity build a convention centre which costs the tax payer nothing will result in a massive benefit to tourism and the Auckland economy.

    • r0b 12.1

      upc – this stuff is well known:

      However, Problem Gambling Foundation chief executive Graeme Ramsey said research showed for every gaming machine, there was 0.8 of a problem gambler.

      “So it’s almost one for one. There’s a very clear correlation between availability of machines and the number of machines, and the number of problems.”

      Forty per cent of the money lost in machines came from people with gambling problems.

      “The harm from gambling is all about pokie machines. For over 70 per cent of people who come to us, it’s about pokies.”

      THe benefits look good – but only if you don’t count the costs.

      • unpcnzcougar 12.1.1

        Thanks Rob. I like numbers – research not so much. I do gamble myself. We peaked at 25221 machines in 2003, during 2008 – 2011 they declined from 19739 to 18001 so if they go to the max of an extra 500 which I don’t believe they will due to public pressure then that is 18501 below what they were when Key came to power and well below the peak of 25221 in 2003.

        So if the research is correct then the addicts would have decreased since 2003 – yes?

        • Kotahi Tane Huna 12.1.1.1

          Specious arguments to defend the indefensible.

          There is no argument that says that selling New Zealand legislation (ie: sovereignty) is anything other than rank treachery. There is no argument that says that an increase in misery is a good thing.

          There is no rock for this corrupt Prime Minister to hide under.

        • Treetop 12.1.1.2

          It is not just about bums on pokie machine seats, it is about how quick the money is taken. Government will not restrict Sky City to have the same bet per spin as played on a non casino pokie machine as pokie player/addicts can do the rounds else where.

      • Dave G 12.1.2

        And, of course that is properly researched and the research is audited, not just the ramblings of the CE pushing his organization.

        Please think carefully. Lets establish the Problem drivers foundation, and the Problem Smokers Foundation and take the same tact.

        “So it’s almost one for one. There’s a very clear correlation between driving and crashes. Every 10 km travelled by a drunk driver results in an injury accident. We propose to ban all cars and make people walk everywhere so there can’t be accidents from drunks driving cars….

        Better still, It’s almost one for one. There is an undeniable correlation between smoking and Cancer. 80% of Smokers suffer cancer at some point in their lives, and this not only destroys their lives, it severely effects the lives of those around them, and costs the country billions a year in health and other costs. Let’s BAN all smoking.

        Get real people, fix the cause, not the effect – I challenge all the smokers to admit is is bad for them, and give up prior to commenting on the gambling issue. its not nearly as serious as smoking!!

    • Colonial Viper 12.2

      In other words, having a few casualties from Key’s gambling plans, most of whom are from the poorer part of town, is no problem.

      • unpcnzcougar 12.2.1

        Originating from the poorer part of town myself and now living in a “nicer” part of town I can say one thing for certain. People do what they’re going to do anyway. Adding more machines is not going to create a traffic jam on the southern motorway. The machines are never full. You saw my stats – yet you chose not to comment on those. Why not? The peak of machines was under a Labour Government. Auckland needs a convention centre. Sometimes roads need to be built and houses have to go. People drink and drive. People do what they’re going to do.

        • DH 12.2.1.1

          You seem a little confused here. Auckland doesn’t need a convention centre, it wants one. Just like Auckland wants another harbour crossing, more roads, better public transport… etc etc. Want & need have very different definitions.

          In terms of economic benefits to Auckland a Convention Centre doesn’t even show on the radar, it simply isn’t important to the Auckland economy whether we get it or not. So it might bring in a few million dollars more. Whoopee, big fucking deal. GDP in NZ is some $170billion and Auckland accounts for a large part of that so lets get some scale here.

    • Draco T Bastard 12.3

      The benefit of having SkyCity build a convention centre which costs the tax payer nothing…

      It won’t cost nothing – it will cost the destruction of the lives of several hundred people.

      • unpcnzcougar 12.3.1

        Please explain.

      • DH 12.3.2

        It will cost taxpayers and/or ratepayers a fortune. What the glib-talking salesmen have forgotten to tell people is that the centre will run at a substantial loss in at least the first 3-5 years of operation… if it ever does make a profit.

        The report by MED on the convention centre mentioned that the big conventions that will make us all rich beyond our wildest dreams are normally booked 4-5years in advance. Auckland won’t get many big booking confirmations until the centre is near completion so we’ll have a good 3-4years of big operating losses to pay for before we start seeing the promised thousands of conventioners and their big spending antics. Guess who’ll be paying for that.

        • higherstandard 12.3.2.1

          “Guess who’ll be paying for that.”

          Sky city and their shareholders ?

          • DH 12.3.2.1.1

            Don’t be stupid. Sky City are only paying for the building, they’re not funding the operating costs.

            • higherstandard 12.3.2.1.1.1

              I think you’re mistaken, have you got a link to confirm your comment ?

              • DH

                Give it some thought mate. If Sky City run the centre then they control the downstream business; all this wonderful tourist spending they’re yapping about. The convention space is the first thing that gets booked. The organisers of conventions like having a package offered to them to save hunting around for accommodation, dining & all that goes with conventions.

                Hand control over to Sky City and the conventioners would stay in Sky City hotels, eat at Sky City Restaurants, entertain at Sky City Casino…. yada yada yada. Auckland would really benefit from all that wouldn’t it.

                • higherstandard

                  Well most large conferences I have attended overseas have a range of accommodation choices along with various add on options for excursions the vast amount of which have little or nothing to do with the convention centre or convention itself.

                  As I enquired before, do you have any reliable information to back on your assertion that Sky City is only paying for the building and not funding the operating costs ?

                  If so this would be a poor deal for Auckland ratepayers.

                  • DH

                    I worded that wrong. I meant Sky City wouldn’t be funding *all* the operating costs, there will be Govt subsidies in various forms. Eddie has another post covering it.

                    It goes without saying that the Govt will want some measure of influence over the operation of the centre. Sky City aren’t building just a convention centre, to them it’s also a regular supply of fresh meat for their casino & other operations. The 500 pokies is likely the amount of new casino business they predict the centre will bring in.

                    Only way the Govt can exert some influence is by ponying up some of the running costs.

  13. seeker 13

    @Dave G. 2.18pm.

    “these people GIVE their money readily, as they take a calculated risk.”
    No Dave, gambling is addictive and as such can become fully blown destructive addiction just like heroin, alcohol or smoking. For an addiction to become fully blown – where all reasonable control, thought, calculation and volition flies out of the window – it needs to be introduced to the addict in the first place and then fed.

    Places like SkyCity introduce it purely for profit, and then they feed it, with more and more machines-had they been allowed by the law. Pokies have been called the “meth amphetamine” of the gambling world in today’s Herald.

    Now SkyCity, aided and abetted by John Key, Stephen Joyce and all who support this deal are about to give an extra large feed, via many more pokies and a law change,to further fuel the ghastly, destructive, rabid addiction of many more poor souls (and I do mean poor in both the economic and mentally vulnerable sense).

    Stilll tempted by a $350 million dollar convention centre and a few hundred possible jobs Dave G.et al ( or should I say other ‘blind’ als) at the expense of the lives of others?

    Friedman,Joseph, Thatcher, Reagan, Douglas etc.did their evil work well by mutating and corrupting many minds of a generation, a generation who now has no problem putting profit, lust and self service ahead of human lives. The new all pervasive morality of the moneyworshippers is productivity and competitiveness at all cost (so said PhilO’reilly on Close up tvnz,29..2.12). Harden your heart forget you are human, sell your souls -you won’t notice they are gone after a while.

  14. Dave G 14

    Colonial Viper…… Why is it a problem. Is smoking a problem created by the government. Are car crashes created by the government. No, not at all.

    So why is any gambling the problem of the government, no matter how many Pokies are in existence.

    Gambling has been around long before Pokies were a feature of pubs and clubs in NZ. I can recall the illegal bookies in pubs many years ago, and the TAB’s taking punters money of them, often they had to go home to their families to tell them there was no money for the week.

    Was that the Governments fault, should they have banned all breeding of Horses for racing to stop Gambling? No. No matter what you do some fool will be stripped of their money via some form of gambling – its about working with the gamblers not restricting any choice they and others have.

    As you see so concerned and genuine about problem gambling, you volunteer to help the problem gamblers ?? if yes, I salute you, well done. If not, your another hypocrite!!

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      As you see so concerned and genuine about problem gambling, you volunteer to help the problem gamblers ?? if yes, I salute you, well done. If not, your another hypocrite!!

      Yeah I am concerned, very concerned.

      My bit to help in this is to make sure that National die in a ditch over SkyCity.

      Satisfied?

      Colonial Viper…… Why is it a problem. Is smoking a problem created by the government. Are car crashes created by the government. No, not at all.

      You’re sorta thick, right? You know, ignoring the role of Government in reducing access and desirability of things like smokes. Of ensuring the safety and maintenance of cars.

      Of limiting gambling activities.

  15. sdm 15

    Explain how a non problem gambler, who wasnt a problem when we had 25000 machines, suddenly goes and becomes a problem, because of these extra 500 machines

    • unpcnzcougar 15.1

      @sdm Thank you. That was my point. Let’s stick to the facts and the hard numbers rather than the shrilling which is making my ears hurt.

    • higherstandard 15.2

      Well if they were not at a site which already had a surfeit of pokies people may have a case that more gambling addiction may occur however the vast majority of wailing is politically motivated, which is understandable.

      • unpcnzcougar 15.2.1

        Yes, think it is a classic case of minority squeaky wheels. Build it, everyone will forget it about and the majority won’t have a problem with it, especially the businesses and tourism industry that benefit.

    • Uturn 15.3

      Uh, it’s called progression of time. Are there more people in NZ since then? Yes. Is gambling more popular? Yes. Is there a drive to promote gambling by Sky City? Yes. Do people’s life situations change? Yes.

      Lets start out easy. Explain how many P addicts there were before P turned up here. Now how many after a few P labs were busted. Now how many after a few more P labs opened.

      Explain how you won’t get sick in the future because you aren’t sick now, despite their being more, or less, diseases and more, or less, doctors to an earlier point.

      Explain how you won’t ever have a car accident because you haven’t in the past, despite car ownership fluctuating.

      Explain how it is that your brain thinks that because something didn’t happen to someone in the past, that it will never happen to anyone again, despite irrelevant indicators.

      • felix 15.3.1

        Right wingers who post here never seem to be able to factor time into their equations. Their faith in a static universe is laughably cute.

        In other news, the question of whether more people will develop spending problems is moot anyway. The only definite outcome which can be predicted with absolute certainty is that there will be more spending.

        Whether this is via more people developing problems or via people with existing problems spending more is irrelevant to this particular argument. We know for certain that the result will be more money sucked out of our communities and into pokie machines.

        How do we know this? Because if it weren’t true, SkyCity wouldn’t want them. Doh.

  16. seeker 16

    @higherstandard 4.27pm

    “vast majority of wailing is politically motivated, ”

    Wrong!!! It is morally motivated.

    Surely with the name you have given yourself you should be able to recognise this.

    • higherstandard 16.1

      If that were the case I would’ve expected far more of a debate about the banning of pokies and restricting the activities of the TAB and Lotto – unfortunately the debate has centred on the political ramifications and political prejudices as demonstrated by your earlier post.

      • McFlock 16.1.1

        You want a discussion on gambling? Go to a gambling blog site.
        You’re disappointed because people who comment on a political site discuss political ramifications of things.

        • higherstandard 16.1.1.1

          I was replying to seeker above making the point that the vast majority of faux moral concern is politically motivated.

  17. Uturn 17

    This is what it comes down to: no one can predict the future with accuracy.

    Some people tend to notice events creating trends, resulting in general outcomes.

    People who prefer to err on the side of caution, in most things, realise that money is nothing compared to the source of real wealth – actual resources. If the result of a decision is that five hundred people will die, but $50 million will be made, these people empathise with the loss, calculate and note the significance of social costs. If they can’t find an alternative, they decline the action and say we probably don’t need the money anyway.

    Other people use basic numbers to measure dynamic situations that cannot be measured with static rules. They don’t care if 500 people die if $50 million is produced and as long as they are not one of those who die. Because they confuse increase of money as an increase of wealth and general social health, they think that making money will solve all problems, thus anything that makes money is good and need not be questioned.

    In NZ, one group asks: What’s good for people in general and how can social costs be reduced? Another group asks: What’s good for me and how much money can be made?

    I hope you have enjoyed this brief outlilne of why things are the way they are.

  18. marsman 18

    Just saw a cartoon from the NZ Herald on Facebook.
    Key’s proposition to SkyCity:-
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/news-cartoons/news/article.cfm?c_id=500814&objectid=10799641

  19. xtasy 19

    When the Sky Tower was built and opened to the public, I could not believe what was going on in NZ. Yes, it was casino money paying for it, and now we have that same international corporation about to press the government to accept a deal to increase their pokie machines by about a third. John Key is warm for the idea, he even invited them to present their “offer” and conditions, looking at it very favourably.

    Change the law a bit, so Sky City gets about a third more in one armed bandit machines, the proved most addictive form of gambling, generating at least 40 per cent of revenue through problem gamblers, and this government wants to sign this off!

    Where do we live? This is unbelievable. I understand that casinos overseas face stricter controls and higher levies than in NZ. We expect other operators to contribute over 30 per cent of revenue to the community to address gambling and other problems. Yet Sky City already gets let off with a mere 2 or 2 and a half percent on profit.

    John Key is showing his true colours here. He is in with the big players in business, bad or not so bad. As long as there are “economic gains”, which means nothing but “profits” for the operators, it is considered healthy and justified.

    So Sky City wants to build and operate a convention centre that some feel NZ and Auckland needs. Fair enough, but what were the terms others (e.g. Infratil) offered, to give us as the public a fair view on this?

    Well, the government and Council may hav e to pay a bit towards other deals, but that may also mean saving millions in addressing social and health costs that will result from increased pokies at Sky City. Does anybody give that a thought? No, and it is the same with other issues. NZ is behind in thinking pro actively in many areas. OK plain packaged cigarettes may be a solution, but what about addressing gambling and alcoholism, drug addiction, poor dietary solutions and so forth also?

    It is ignored, due to lobby companies putting the pressures on. That is the bloody truth. Stop this damned rot and send a clear message to your MP, perhaps make submissions and protest, to stop this rotten government selling this country short. Throw J. Key out next election, that is the minimum to be expected now.

  20. Anthony Bull 20

    Do you guys realise that there are now 7,000 less pokie machines in the country than when Labour was running the country?

    It kind of makes you guys look like a bunch of hypocrites – or of rather small intelligence, that you are getting your knickers all worked up about this.

    As a related point – watch John Key completely take John Campbell to pieces over this – absolutely brilliant……

    http://ondemand.tv3.co.nz/Campbell-Live-Friday-April-20-2012/tabid/119/articleID/6262/MCat/73/Default.aspx

    • felix 20.1

      I think you’ve posted the wrong link, Mr Bull.

      • Anthony Bull 20.1.1

        That link shows Campbell being made to look like a hack – whats so wrong about it?

    • KJT 20.2

      What makes you think we all support Labour?

    • bad12 20.3

      I will refrain here from offering any critique of what i see as any of your personal short-comings, but, as you have in fact indicated that the reduction in the number of ‘pokie machines’ has only happened as a consequence of there being a National Government I can only suggest you take a long deep look at yourself in the mirror,(looking for any traces of a liar lurking within),

      The ‘sinking lid’ policy governing the number of ‘pokie machines’ was operating under the previous 9 years of Labour/NZFirst/Green Government, so we fail to see any hypocrisy inherent to the opposition to Slippery and Nationals current shady dealings with SkyCity,

      I would suggest that you re-view the Campbell Live interview with Slippery over His dealings with Skycity and take note of the points in the interview where the Prime Minister found Himself squeaking in a voice more fitting of a teenage girl in answer to a couple of Campbells more pointed queries,

      A forensic psychologist would tell you that such dramatic fluctuations in voice usually indicate either lying or someone under pressure attempting to inject an emotional plea of ‘believe me’ in answer to a given question where they know that their answer is of questionable veracity and a lot rides upon those seeing,viewing,or hearing the answer placing ‘trust’ in the person answering which is not based upon the actual facts of the answer as given,

      Sounds pretty Slippery to me…

      • McFlock 20.3.1

        The ‘sinking lid’ policy governing the number of ‘pokie machines’ was operating under the previous 9 years of Labour/NZFirst/Green Government

         
        What? Key claiming credit for initiatives introduced by labour?! I’m shocked, shocked I tells ya…
         
        Nah, not really. Par for the course from that slimey jerk.

      • ropata 20.3.2

        i wonder how much of this wondrous decline in pokies occurred as a result of destroyed pubs in Christchurch…

        • McFlock 20.3.2.1

          That would be a revealing stat – how quick the pokies were back as opposed to accommodation.

        • prism 20.3.2.2

          Good point ropata. It’s the sort of fortunate fact that would prove the old saying that ‘There’s a silver lining to every cloud’ that is manna to a politician.

    • Carol 20.4

      Erm…. it looks to me like Campbell puts it to Key….especially on Crafar farms. Dead, cold eyes their, Jonkey.

      So has the PM been to visit Betty Ford on one of his trips overseas? Otherwise, how the explain the startling verbal transformation?

    • xtasy 20.5

      Bull, that was agreed pliy for years, under the last and present government, to reduce over all gambling machines. Now suddenly, Mr Key and consorts want to have Sky City exempted from this, by allowing them a 30 or more per cent increase in pokies offered, while others have to cut down on them. Do you not get it, or are you such a brain washed Natiional Party supporter?

      Tonight I learn that even the supposed “anti gambling” John (hollow) Banks may support the deal. What a rotten state of affairs is NZ in?

    • Treetop 20.6

      Councils control the sinking lid policy on the reduction of pokie machines not the government.

  21. Roger 21

    Given the damage that problem gambling causes it’s not enough to say that there are less pokie machines now than there used to be. Also if supporters of the project believed in the laissez-faire approach then wouldn’t this be seen as a cost of business to be funded by the businesses that want to use the Convention Centre? Alternatively, if its not economic for businesses to fund, and its really a matter of national strategic importance, then it should compete with other government priorities for full public funding. There might be a case for PPP’s under certain circumstances to help build socially useful infrastructure. Whether pokies and a Convention Centre qualify is another question altogether.

  22. bad12 22

    Hell how can anyone discuss ‘pokie machines’ in terms of economics, such things are the anti-thesis of economy,

    Pokie machines simply remove capital from the economy while providing no productive basis for having done so,(unless of course anyone can consider a few flashing lights and a musical jingle as production)…

  23. prism 23

    Key says it is fiscally neutral. We taxpayers haven’t had to pay anything. Those addicted to chasing impossible dreams only live in the poorer part of town and in a sort of virtual apartheid so will not visit Sky City. Wrong on all counts.

    The taxpayers will pay for each gambling addict’s treatment. Their families suffer and pay as they are deprived of money needed to service the family’s needs and any unexpected windfalls will be sucked up till they come up empty. Gamblers will steal (embezzle) from their workplace, their clubs, their charitable connections or borrow from gullible family. Humans in general find it hard to say ‘enough’ to the promise of hopeful gains from gambling, and it is not just the low income people.

    Lastly embracing this type of gambling demonstrates the amoral attitude of free market business people and their fellow travellers. They will take from vulnerable people till they have nothing then disdain them when they have insufficient left to manage their lives.

    Pokies were introduced in 1991 – they had not been part of the mix before. The politicians who did so are money-machine-men who will take money from anyone, making a profit is a moral act to them, and the less restrictions on asset stripping either companies, their shareholders, the nation and its people, or the individuals who can be tapped is fair game. They are ‘smiling assassins’ except they tend to look grave and wise and act like reliable people with broad knowledge and high integrity. Whatever they say or do, look for their ulterior motives.

  24. ochocinco 24

    Even if the extra pokies caused zero harm, the issue would be this: Key sold NZ to corporate/capitalist interests. Which he should not do.

    • felix 24.1

      Too right. The pokies themselves are a side issue, a small dirty piece of a much bigger dirty puzzle.

  25. henry olongo 25

    Dave G your posts on this topic are absolute drivel. You are in denial- the reality is that addictive gambling on pokie machines is a new feature in our society. It requires eradication through regulation.

  26. lynette 26

    John key selling the law is just ridiculous. and in favour of machines that take jobs, unbelievable. Profits going goodness knows where. Whats the country comming to.
    Pokies are addictive hypnotic devices that rob people blind while giving them deception and adrendalin. they are programmed to take your money whilst you are in a hypnotic state. It isnt ‘gaming’ it isnt ‘entertainment’
    It is a real social issue. How the government has got it this far is beyond me. Please wake up democratic NZ and stand up.
    I wrote a book called ‘pokies, even when i win’ order it from a bookshop and read it. Its good and honest and took a lot for me to put it out there.Lynette Whale. published by Steele Roberts.

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    Redline
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    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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • #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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons
    Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons to show violence towards women is never OK...
    Scoop politics
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
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