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Polity: National cuts charity funding because charity criticises National

Written By: - Date published: 8:57 am, March 21st, 2014 - 77 comments
Categories: you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: , ,

This is awful. The government has cut funding to the Problem Gambling Foundation, and National MP Tau Henare says on twitter it is because the PGF “criticises” too much.

Apparently National doesn’t like it when a charity set up to minimise problem gambling has an opinion about what causes problem gambling. Idiots.

Update:

A screenshot of the tweet:

Problem Gambling Foundation Henare tweet

77 comments on “Polity: National cuts charity funding because charity criticises National”

  1. One Anonymous Bloke 1

    Arrogant. Out of touch.

    Keep it up, you wingnut fuckwits.

  2. bad12 2

    But, but, but, Slippery the Prime Minister says that there can be only one, Charity that is, the National Party…

  3. RedLogix 3

    You need to get the Nats message.

    There is nothing wrong with corruption, nothing wrong with gambling, nothing wrong with alcohol, no such thing as poverty.

    That’s been Key’s instinctive response all along – he’s ‘relaxed’ about these things because he really is relaxed about them. This is an important element of his popularity; because Key exhibits little shame over these things, the public don’t sense that there is anything to be worried about.

  4. tricledrown 5

    $6billion a year damage gambling does to our economy.
    Nationals response more damage please.
    $6 billion alcohol damage to oureconomy .
    National response wet bus ticket tiny bandaid fix.
    Poverty $6 billion a year 285,000 children going hungry hospital resources being wasted on preventable illnesses.
    Childrens future income potential being undermined.
    National the laughing ladder pullers.
    Bean brained bean counters
    $18 billion lost from our economy every year by incompetant Narcissistic Aloof selfish shortsighted corrupt conmen.

  5. karol 6

    Press Release this morning from the Problem Gambling Foundation:

    The Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand can confirm that the Ministry of Health has informed us it will not be contracting with PGF for the bulk of current services after June 30.

    While the Ministry describes PGF as a valued provider of quality services it has told PGF it has a superior offer for the clinical and public health services PGF provides.

    As a result PGF will not be able to continue as the largest provider of problem gambling services in Australasia and an internationally recognised pioneer in our field.

    The effect of this decision will be to silence our voice

    More at the link.

    And what is the alternative “superior” offer? What organisation?

    • Tracey 6.1

      from Herald

      “Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne said the decision over funding for the foundation had “nothing to do” with the foundation’s opposition to the SkyCity deal “as far as I’m aware”.

      Foundation chief Graeme Ramsey did not return calls last night.”

      It will also be interesting to see the scope of the superior offer for clinical and public health services, and if they are a NZS company (or australian) and if after one year they deal with as many “clients”.

      I see Queenstown is getting an international convention centre. That’s CHCH, Auckland and Queenstown… and Auckland had to get one cos we just dont have enough… (auckland already has one btw)

    • Ant 6.2

      What’s the bet some of the funding and provision will also be going to some National/Maori Party connected crony Whanau Ora kick back group.

    • Stuart Munro 6.3

      what is the alternative “superior” offer? What organisation?

      Oravida presumably.

  6. RedLogix 7

    On thinking it over…

    Anyone who walks through the gambling floors at Sky City will readily note how very prominent Asian patrons are.

    Given how much Chinese money flows into the National Party Charity – I wonder if there is not a money trail to be sniffed out here?

  7. It appears that funding hasn’t been cut, it is being moved to a “superior” provider. From the Problem Gambling Foundation’s media statement:

    While the Ministry describes PGF as a valued provider of quality services it has told PGF it has a superior offer for the clinical and public health services PGF provides.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/GE1403/S00100/statement-on-ministry-of-health-contracts.htm

    And Stuff report:

    A spokesman from Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne’s office confirmed today that the other organisation was the Salvation Army.

    The spokesman said the Salvation Army bid for the contract was more efficient, and offered more services and value for money.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9853344/Problem-Gambling-Foundation-loses-Govt-funding

    It’s tough on the PGF but funds for services should be contestable. The Salvation Army have a record of providing a wide range of services and they have also been critical of the Government.

    • mickysavage 8.1

      Pete real fact checking ought to mean more than accepting at face value what Peter Dunne’s office has said.

      • Pete George 8.1.1

        I just added to the information here, I haven’t claimed it was fact checking.

        Do you think what Stuff and the DPF said can be accepted at face value?

        Do you think what Trevor Mallard and Rob Salmond have said can be accepted at face value?

        • Tracey 8.1.1.1

          Its a pretty poor effort tho pete given your new role. I mean the claim is that funding has been cut to pgf. You say it hasnt been cut someone else has it… see my other comments.

          • Pete George 8.1.1.1.1

            PGF won’t get as much from the next round of funding. The Salvation Army will get more funding instead, for however long the contract is for. That’s how a lot of Government funding of NGO’s works.

            I have no idea if the SA service will be “superior” or not, but they have extensive existing infrastructure and may be able to operate on lower overheads.

            • Tracey 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Then why did you write it had been moved to a “superior provider” ? Those were your words. The published accounts stated superior offer. A big difference.

        • Puddleglum 8.1.1.2

          “the DPF”?

          Those initials sound familiar but what do they have to do with this?

      • Pete George 8.1.2

        RadioLIVE Newsroom ‏@LIVENewsDesk

        Internal Affairs minister Peter Dunne and the Ministry of Health both “emphatically deny” any political involvement.

        • mickysavage 8.1.2.1

          So how do you explain Tau’s tweets?

          • Pete George 8.1.2.1.1

            I don’t have to explain his tweets. I’m not aware of him having anything to do with the Ministry of Health funding for gambling services. Are you?

            • mickysavage 8.1.2.1.1.1

              Well wearing your other hat Pete don’t you think this is a matter that needs to be resolved? And are you concerned that what the ministry is telling us conflicts with what a National MP is telling us?

              • This gets well covered here:
                http://matthewbeveridge.co.nz/politics/problem-gambling-foundation-tau-henare-and-the-risk-of-commenting-on-social-media/

                In my opinion Henare has said things that are stupid, and as far as I’m aware he has nothing to do with the Ministry of Health contacting gambling services.

                • mickysavage

                  But Pete without the benefit of seeing briefing papers or doing OIA requests you have formed a conclusion on the subject. Don’t you agree that there should be further investigation? The “Tau Henare is an idiot” is a plausible explanation but losing a contract like this is a rather unusual occurrence.

                • karol

                  For someone committed to “balance” and fact checking, you seem remarkably quick to support the government and UF lines rather than looking at both sides of the debate, PG.

                  Not providing much credibility to you “unbiased” fact-checking editor role.

                  • UF has nothing to do with it. It’s a Ministry of Health issue.

                    I’m not supporting anyone, I’m providing information as it becomes available.

                    Do you expect every comment in social media to be backed by absolute balance and irrefutable proof? Or just mine?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Nah, we expect your comments to be pointless, irrelevant, and all about you. Ooh look, there’s yet another one.

                    • karol

                      I’m providing information as it becomes available.

                      hahahhaha. There’s a lot of other stuff out on the social media that you are not reporting – your reporting is being very selective in supporting Petre Dunne’s lines. Is Petre Dunne not the leader and only MP for the UF party?

                      Your willingness to jump in on this with support for particular line and not to provide any in depth links, shows your bias.

                      You are not giving your new fact checking role any credibility. You are commenting like a player out to influence opinions.

                      Do you expect every comment in social media to be backed by absolute balance and irrefutable proof? Or just mine?

                      Again…. hahahaha.

                      Every comment on social media is not being made by someone claiming to be an unbiased, fact checking editor.

                    • karol

                      one of the many social media comments you haven’t bothered to repeat, from Russell Brown on Twitter:

                      @GraemeEdgeler @mizjwilliams And the purpose of gutting one organisation so another can buy its services is …?

                    • I don’t see any point in repeating everything on Twitter here, but here’s a response to your one:

                      @GraemeEdgeler

                      @publicaddress @mizjwilliams … something we may find out when @PeterDunneMP answers my OIA request :-)

                      Just up the thread a little way you will see I linked to a post that has quite a good look at other coverage on social media, including No Right Turn. Here it goes again:

                      This gets well covered here:
                      http://matthewbeveridge.co.nz/politics/problem-gambling-foundation-tau-henare-and-the-risk-of-commenting-on-social-media/

                      Your criticisms are very selective.

                      For someone who’s often quite thoughtful and thorough you seem to have rushed into shooting the messenger here Karol.

                      There’s not much point in me continuing here, I’ll check back later to see if there’s any good information added.

                    • felix

                      Surely Pete George, citizen, can have his own opinions and voice them quite separately from his role of Pete George, fact checker extraordinaire.

                      No?

                    • felix

                      To clarify the above, what I mean is if I see a comment from Pete, I have no reason to assume he’s speaking on behalf of factiploicheck or whatever it’s called unless he had indicated that this was the case.

                    • karol

                      Agree, felix. It should be possible. I will wait to see if that actually happens.

                      On present performance I do not see that as likely.

                    • freedom

                      felix is right, we are all just so eager to see Pete’s skills as a researcher in action we are forgetting he has his own life, and his own views

                      I look forward to seeing how Pete manages that important distinction when the site is launched, whenever that will be …………

                    • rhinocrates

                      I’m SELECTIVELY providing information as it becomes FED TO ME

                      There, FIFY.

                      (The funny thing is, PG doesn’t even know what a joke – no sorry, punchline – he is across the blogosphere)

                      How about that lifestyle block you like to brag about, is it laid with astroturf?

                    • rhinocrates

                      Christ, even Hoots, who also overestimates his talents, spins better than this.

                      OAB: “Nah, we expect your comments to be pointless, irrelevant, and all about you. Ooh look, there’s yet another one.”

                      Yes, they are pointless, irrelevant and all about PG because PG is pointless, irrelevant and all about PG – perfect recursion there.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Obviously if the funding had been cut for the reasons Tau states the Ministry would be completely upfront about it.

                    Or, alternatively, it could be that Pete “credibility free zone” George and everything associated with him is an irrelevant waste of oxygen. Yep, that seems more likely.

              • freedom

                As a tweet in reply to Tau Henare said
                ” This is not good news for the Ombudsman’s Office then, I take it?” :)
                https://twitter.com/tauhenare/status/446725844044902400

              • fender

                Pete’s “other hat” is a knotted hanky supplied by one Dunne nothing fool.

                The cuts to the PGF is how the “smiling assassin” operates, disgracefully.

    • karol 8.2

      Funding has been cut from the Problem Gambling Foundation, as Polity states

      The Salvation Army does do some great work. However, the Salvation Army are majorly focused on services for problem gamblers and their families. While they have been critical of the government over SkyCity they have not campaigned as much on it as the PGF. The PGF has done loads of specific research and campaigning about Problem Gambling.

      Many have voiced concern over the last year in the way that competitive funding to charities have tended to make them less willing to criticise government policies.

      This 2010 report from Vic Uni, looks at changes in welfare funding and the role of charities and private providers. They did a lot of research of the available data (though relevant records to tend be a bit patchy). They conclude (tentatively) that the increase in the competitive approach to funding does not provide the best outcomes for those in need. They posit that complementary approaches are more beneficial.

      Conclusion:

      A small number of case studies have assisted in this respect. It would be helpful to extend these case studies to analyse a larger body of data over two or three decades, in order to ascertain whether the findings of the limited data used in this paper can be generalised to the health sector specifically and the charity sector as a whole. In the interim the tentative conclusion of this research is that Third Way government promotes complementary funding and delivery of social welfare services, but that the growing expensiveness of those services means that charities will increasingly rely on other sources for their income. As these sources are also limited, the prognosis is that charity delivery of social services is likely to decrease. The growing competitive nature of charity funding will therefore be disadvantageous to those who are most in need of welfare.

    • Tracey 8.3

      Superior offer is not the same as ” superior” provider

      Can post your source for the idea that the new fundee is a superior provider?

      Offer and provider are not synonyms so a source would be great

    • Tracey 8.4

      I cant find mr dunnes condemnation of key for saying the sa report authors need to get out more and see what he sees. A link would be great.

    • Macro 8.5

      This type of argument looks good if you think that social services should be “contestable” and “competitive” in some crazy mixed up way like they are the “building of some new road of national significance”. But such thinking is muddle headed and completely overlooks the reality of the situation. It is not the first time that this and the previous administration have done this kind of wholesale change of direction in the provision of a vital service for administrative and lets face it BUDGET expediency, completely overlooking the wholesale disruption and angst to the recipients and providers that this causes. But that is the way things are now in a world of Rogernomics. Only money is important. People don’t count.
      The end result will be the loss of expertise to overseas.
      Sure the Salvation Army can provide some good service – I’m not disputing that. But the expertise that resides with the PGF will be lost – to our detriment.
      NZ is now bereft of Occupational Therapist specialising in brain injury because of a similar funding decision by a National governed ACC. The end result will be more severe hospitalisation at a later date, and greatly ruined lives. But don’t let that worry you, the govt saved some money to give to the rich.

    • freedom 8.6

      “The Salvation Army have a record of providing a wide range of services and they have also been critical of the Government.”
      Which Government would that be Pete? Cannot say I have seen any such criticism of National by the Salvation Army. There have been various opinions expressed, largely by the food bank programmes,
      that they are having to supply a lot more assistance of late. They have stated a few times that it is getting harder for those in the low socio-economic bands to make ends meet, but I do not recall a single instance where they have said anything like ‘ because of the policies of this National Government people are hurting’ or words to that effect. Short of the Bretheren congregations of NZ a more blue button wearing church you would be hard pressed to find.

      by the by…..There is only 182 days till the election Pete, when is Politicheck going to launch ????

      If it was not planned to be a useful tool leading into the election, what was its purpose again?

      • karol 8.6.1

        The Salvation Army has been critical of the SkyCity deal.

        However, their criticism tends to be a bit more muted than that of the PGF, which has been far more focused on recording and campaigning around gambling and SkyCity.

        Also, it is helpful to have BOTH the Salvation Army and the PGF working together rather than them fighting each other for funding – with the one that claims less costs usually being the winner in this regime.

        Working in cooperation means that between them they will provide better outcomes for the community.

        • Pete George 8.6.1.1

          They may be working together.

          Jessica Williams ‏@mizjwilliams

          The Sallies also say they’d be open to talking to the PGF about how they might give them some of the funding to help deliver services.

          Utilising the strengths of both the Sallies and the PGF may (may) result in better community outcomes.

          • karol 8.6.1.1.1

            Working together for the best outcome is a good way forward.

            PG, when are you going to look for some actual, indepth evidence rather than being so quick to pick up on any comments supporting Dunne’s claims?

            So the Sallies are going to sub contract to PGF rather than each being given support in their own right? Sallies are basically being given power over the PGF?

          • Mark 8.6.1.1.2

            I worked in Mental Health for twenty seven years and had a regular interface with the S/A. The S/A have their heart in the right place but their service delivery is average in the extreme. They pay peanuts and their service reflects that. To make them the provider of choice is a bad joke on people who can least afford it.

        • freedom 8.6.1.2

          thanks for that Sky City article karol

  8. In a press release Dunne denies claims on Problem Gambling Foundation funding:

    Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne has refuted entirely claims by the opposition that Problem Gambling Foundation funding is being cut due to political pressure.

    “The Ministry of Health clearly signalled in 2012 that it would go to the market for the provision of gambling harm minimisation services during its public consultation on this issue, and this is the outcome of that process”, says Mr Dunne.

    “This review had been on the cards for some years prior to this, as the development of the sector has to a large extent been undertaken in an ad hoc manner, with duplication of services from national providers simply not achieving best value for money that clients of services are entitled to expect.”

    The process to retender the contracts for these services was an open contestable tender.

    The evaluation panel deciding on the tender comprised six members: three internal Ministry staff and three external evaluators from the Department of Internal Affairs, the Health Promotion Agency and a Pacific health consultant.

    “The Ministry of Health has been particularly mindful to keep the process clearly separate from any perception of political interference. This extended to commissioning an independent review by Pricewaterhouse on its proposed decisions and I congratulate them on the rigorous commitment to probity they have shown in following this tender process as it went beyond the requirements of best practice”.

    “The outcome is that services are more streamlined and will achieve increased service provision from government funding in the gambling harm minimisation area. The Problem Gambling Foundation will continue to be contracted to provide specialist services, if negotiations with them are successful, says Mr Dunne.

    It is proposed that the major national provider will be the Salvation Army’s Oasis service, which already provides gambling harm and other addiction and social services across the country.

    “I am aware that the Salvation Army has been critical of the government in certain areas over the years, including the SkyCity convention centre, but I see no reason why this should prevent them from being contracted to provide the excellent services that they do.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1403/S00425/dunne-denies-claims-on-problem-gambling-foundation-funding.htm

    That adds to the story.

    • karol 9.1

      So your only interest seems to be to promote Dunne’s line.

      When are you going to attempt some “balance” by looking equally at opposing arguments and evidence?

      Not much fact-checker cred here.

      • freedom 9.1.1

        quote from Politicheck’s creator Rory McCarthy.
        “This editor for me needs to be utterly impartial. They need to preferably have no affiliation with any party, and a reputation as a solid researcher. ”

        no matter how it is factored in, none of this computes with Pete George being appointed editor

      • Pete George 9.1.2

        I’m not fact checking, I’m contributing to an evolving discussion. I’m sure you’re aware that fact checking takes time – especially when ministers and government departments are involved.

        When are you going to attempt some “balance” by looking equally at opposing arguments and evidence?

        • karol 9.1.2.1

          Mate, I’ve done more fact checking in this discussion than you have.

          I repeat, your bias is showing, your cred as an unbiased factchecker is pretty low.

          I am unashamedly left wing.

          I have quoted an academic piece of research on the issue, plus looked comparatively at the websites of the organisations under the spotlight. All you have done is quote social media and press releases in support of Dunne and the government position.

          • lprent 9.1.2.1.1

            I have quoted an academic piece of research on the issue, plus looked comparatively at the websites of the organisations under the spotlight. All you have done is quote social media and press releases in support of Dunne and the government position.

            I believe that PG would think that you are being unfair. Obviously social media is the way to get peer reviewed facts right?

            groan

        • framu 9.1.2.2

          “I’m not fact checking”

          so your just here filling in time, and words for the fun of it?

          perhaps you should check claims before repeating them – its your job these days isnt it?

          god your tiresome

        • freedom 9.1.2.3

          C’mon Pete, you are the face of Politicheck. It is a simple enough question:
          When is Politicheck going to launch ????

          The site never responds with anything but variations of ‘soon’

          Was your appointment as Editor not celebrated quite as much as the ‘advice’ led Rory to believe it would be? Is the entire enterprise now being shelved? Any comment?

          (Who did Rory get advice from? Who would ever recommend, as Editor of a political fact checking site, a man who admits he does not know how to access Hansard information?)

          • fender 9.1.2.3.1

            It will launch only when a “left” government takes over?

          • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1.2.3.2

            A man with none of the necessary mana, skills, or experience.

          • Tracey 9.1.2.3.3

            And confuses a superior offer with a superior provider.

            I dont care who he posts as his comment was wrong in at least two places. You didnt need to be a fact checker just read the quotes from before you.

        • rhinocrates 9.1.2.4

          I’m not fact checking, I’m contributing to an evolving discussion

          Oh how’s that for Orwellian obfuscation?

          It’s impossible to parody PG – he does it all by himself, and funniest of all, he doesn’t get it.

    • Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne has not refuted claims by a National Party Member of Parliament that Problem Gambling Foundation funding is being cut due to political pressure.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 9.3

      Heard of Novapay ?

  9. anker 10

    It is a disastrous decision to cut a service that is working with experienced clinicians (as others have said, losing good people overseas).

    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, so to close a service as abruptly as this, you need very, very good reasons from an outcomes (clinical) and outputs point of view.

    Closing this service will be a major disruption to clients and the general public (who know of the service and may need to access it). There has to be extremely good (clinical) grounds to do this, rather than saving a few bucks.

    Good clinicians are hard to find, believe me.

    I will write to Tony Ryall and Peter Dunne and demand to see the clinical reasons (outcomes and outputs) that would warrant the closing of this service. I suggest others do too.

  10. karol 11

    RNZ reported on NGO fears of having their funding cut. Audio, Feb 2014.

    Organisations are being reassured that their funding won’t be affected if they are publicly critical of Government legislation. Some non-governmental organisations say they won’t put their names to select committee submissions critical of proposed law changes for fear of losing their funding.

  11. anker 12

    Now the taxpayers union is saying good on the government for cutting the funding to the PGF as taxpayers shouldn’t be paying for lobbyists.(or words to the effect). This is ignorance in the extreme.

    Everyone knows an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So lobbying to reduce the amount of gambling available such as pokies, is a health prevention role. Organizations such as PGF have an ethical duty to do this lobbying work.

  12. drongo 13

    C’mon, the Salvation Army won the bid and should do a fine job.

    Mr Milne (Labour candidate for Chch) and Mrs Roche (as Green as any tree) are interested parties and are crying far too loud. As far as the eternal Mr Mallard is concerned, we all know he leads the ABC faction and would love to embarrass Mr Cunliffe.

    • Murray Olsen 13.1

      The Salvation Army does a fine job on Manus Island as well. The Iranian refugee who is no longer alive is said to have been killed by an employee of the Salvation Army. While they are involved with that sort of rubbish, they should not be getting any of our government’s contracts. It’s been a long time since they have been an organisation that has just filled the stomachs of cold drunks with nourishing soup.

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    Occasionally erudite | 21-11
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    The central bargain of Westminster democracy is that the monarch stays out of politics, and in exchange they get to stay in the role, both legally and literally. Prince Charles - already famous for his undemocratic interventions in politics -...
    No Right Turn | 21-11
  • Journalism is not terrorism
    What happens if you're a UK journalist and you campaign for press freedom or report on police misconduct? The police database you as a terrorist:A group of journalists has launched a legal action against Scotland Yard after discovering that the...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • A century of changing transport spending
    Via Donal Curtin, I got wind of a fantastic Statistics NZ visualisation of changes to the Consumer Price Index over the last century. The Consumer Price Index, or CPI, is a tool that statistics agencies use to track inflation over...
    Transport Blog | 20-11
  • Boycott thieving employers
    In the past few days, we've learned of a new employer horror: petrol-station workers, often on th eminimum wage, being forced to pay for the crimes of their customers. Its unfair, immoral, and possibly illegal. So what can we do...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • Whiteboard Friday. How NZ’s welfare system traps people in poverty
    This Whiteboard Friday looks at how our current benefit system traps people in poverty, which is another reason we need to replace it with an Unconditional Basic Income. This week has been a big week for the Unconditional Basic Income....
    Gareth’s World | 20-11
  • Income mobility
    Recently Treasury has published a paper showing that most people do not stay at the same point on the income scale for an extended period. That is assuredly true, and is also a good thing in as far as it...
    Polity | 20-11
  • Read out, Xi in, as Hansen makes late change to All Blacks team
    All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has sprung a surprise by picking Chinese President Xi Jinping to start in this weekend’s test against Wales at the Millennium Stadium....
    Imperator Fish | 20-11
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    The chainsaws stopped in native forest on public land in 1999 after a strong campaign by non-governmental organisations such as Forest and Bird and Native Forest Action (NFA), supported by the Green Party. Immediately after the 1999 election, the incoming...
    frogblog | 20-11
  • Persuasion experiment
    Michael LaCour, a PhD student at the excellent UCLA Political Science Department, along with Yale's Don Green, have a fascinating new paper on what causes people to change their mind on gay marriage. Many people know that a doorstep conversation...
    Polity | 20-11
  • $4.8 billion gone
    As readers know, the NZ Super Fund now contributes around $27 billion to our net position as a country, It will help us pay for the wave of baby boom retirements. Sadly, it is now clear that National's decision to...
    Polity | 20-11
  • Secondary teachers vote IES into collective
    21 November 2014 PPTA members have voted to include two teaching roles central to Investing in Educational Success (IES) in their collective agreement.At paid union meetings held throughout the country over the past two weeks 80.3% voted to include the...
    PPTA | 20-11
  • Labour’s Hercules?
    Hero? Saint? Both? Neither? In making Labour an electable proposition by 2017, Andrew Little faces a challenge of Herculean proportions. Then again, Hercules was presented with twelve impossible tasks. Little can succeed by successfully completing a more modest (but equally...
    Bowalley Road | 20-11
  • Roger Sutton and deja vu all over again
    What to say about the Roger Sutton story? Well, Andrea Vance has done some amazing work setting out the basic facts behind the carefully stage-managed whitewashing of Roger Sutton’s pseudo-departure. And stargazer at The Hand Mirror has responded to the...
    On the Left | 20-11
  • MoT acknowledge changing trends and future funding issues
    Last week the Briefings to government ministers (BIM) were published. I’ve already looked at what the Ministry of Transport (MoT) and NZTA have said about transport in Auckland and so in this post I’m going to look at some of the other points...
    Transport Blog | 20-11
  • Why we need to talk about the scientific consensus on climate change
    An interesting sequence of events followed the publication of a scientific paper the Skeptical Science team published in May last year. The paper found a 97% consensus that humans were causing global warming in relevant scientific papers. Finding an overwhelming...
    Skeptical Science | 20-11
  • 2014 – Ongoing jobless tally
    . . Continued from: 2013 – Ongoing jobless tally So by the numbers, for this year, January OceanaGold/Macraes Mine: 146 redundancies Fitzroy Yachts: 100 redundancies OceanaGold: 76 redundancies Tenix: 15 redundancies February Goodman Fielder: 125 redundancies Pacific Steel Group: 70-90 redundancies...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-11
  • 2014 – Ongoing jobless tally
    . . Continued from: 2013 – Ongoing jobless tally So by the numbers, for this year, January OceanaGold/Macraes Mine: 146 redundancies Fitzroy Yachts: 100 redundancies OceanaGold: 76 redundancies Tenix: 15 redundancies February Goodman Fielder: 125 redundancies Pacific Steel Group: 70-90 redundancies...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-11
  • Stuart’s 100 #56: More Dignity for Daily Users
    56 More Dignity for Daily Users What if there was a moment of civic dignity outside the Auckland District Court? The Auckland District Court on the corner of Albert and Kingston Streets is I think at last count the busiest...
    Transport Blog | 20-11
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    frogblog | 20-11
  • The greatest tragedy of our time
    This is going to ruffle a few feathers. We are parasites. Yes you read that correctly – humanity is a giant collective parasite sucking the life juices from dear Mother Earth. I’m not a nihilist. I still believe there’s plenty...
    On the Left | 20-11
  • Proving anecdotes are reliable
    Here’s one to go with Let’s rely on anecdotes instead! Something I picked up on Facebook Similar articles  ...
    Open Parachute | 20-11
  • Proving anecdotes are reliable
    Here’s one to go with Let’s rely on anecdotes instead! Something I picked up on Facebook Similar articles  ...
    Open Parachute | 20-11
  • Class warfare in the UK
    Surprise, surprise! An independent study has shown that the UK's conservative government has been driving a massive transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich:A landmark study of the coalition’s tax and welfare policies six months before the general...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • That didn’t take long
    National's new teabreak law isn't even in force and employers are already abusing it:Yesterday a union member, who prefers to remain anonymous for fear of retribution, emailed Hotel Organiser Shanna Reeder. “This morning in the briefing our manager declared that...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • Justice is more important than international relations
    Yunus Rahmatullah is a Pakistani citizen. In 2004 he was disappeared by British forces in Iraq. The British then gave him to the Americans who rendered him to Afghanistan and kept him there without charge or trial for ten years,...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • The Sutton debacle
    Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: it’s not a good thing, except when you’re playing Frank Zappa’s 1988 instrumental album Guitar, in which case ‘Sexual Harassment in the Workplace’ is the opening track, and it’s a stonker. However, setting aside the...
    Occasionally erudite | 20-11
  • The dangers of ignoring context
    Here’s a 22 point plan for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.Entrench Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian lands.Never let a chance go by to duplicitously conflate Hamas and some in Fatah with the Islamic State/ISIS/ISIL so as to gild the imperiled-Israeli...
    Pundit | 19-11
  • Rapid transit has passed the acid test
    I recently ran across a New Zealand Herald article from 2000 on the region’s plans to start building good rapid transit infrastructure. (Which, as Patrick highlighted in a recent post, is exactly what is holding Auckland back relative to its...
    Transport Blog | 19-11
  • The week in politics vs. Gilmore Girls
    This week in politics: Andrew Little became leader of the Labour Party. Julia Gillard spoke at the University of Auckland about gender and politics. Gerry Brownlee was fined for breaching airport security. Tony Abbott threw down with Vladimir Putin at APEC....
    On the Left | 19-11
  • Whither the class line?
    In 1995 I published a book that explored the interaction between the state, organised labor and capital in the transitions to democracy in Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay. The book was theoretically rooted in neo-or post-Gramscian thought as well as the...
    Kiwipolitico | 19-11
  • This video shows the pain caused by NZ’s current benefit system
    Darryn bravely talks about the stigma that comes with being on the benefit, and how that has affected his life. This stigma is just one of the many problems our current benefit system creates. These problems would be removed if...
    Gareth’s World | 19-11
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    Greens | 21-11
  • National opens door further to Chinese property speculators
    National has further opened the door to Chinese property speculators with the registration of a third Chinese bank here that will make it easier for Chinese investors to invest in New Zealand properties, the Green Party said today."As well, former...
    Greens | 20-11
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour | 20-11
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens | 20-11
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour | 20-11
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour | 19-11
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens | 19-11
  • National caught out on state house porkies
    Housing NZ’s annual report out today directly contradicts the Government’s claim that one-third of its houses are in the wrong place and are the wrong size, said Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The annual report states 96 per cent of...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Damning report on Department of Conservation restructure
    The restructuring of the Department of Conservation (DOC) following National's severe funding cuts has been revealed as failure, the Green Party said today.The Taribon report has reviewed the new structure of DOC after 12 months. The restructuring, one of the...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Greens welcome Xi, but human rights need to be on agenda
    The Green Party welcomes the visit to New Zealand of Chinese President Xi Jinping and wishes to congratulate him on his recent announcement regarding China capping emissions for the first time.The United States and China recently unveiled a deal to...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Backing New Zealanders to get ahead
    New Labour Leader Andrew Little says it is an immense privilege to have been chosen to lead the party and to be given the task of ensuring it once again becomes a powerful force that backs New Zealanders in getting...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Andrew Little Elected Leader of Labour Party
    “The Labour Party congratulates Andrew Little, who has been elected as party leader in a robust and highly democratic process,” says Labour Party President Moira Coatsworth. “Andrew’s leadership will have the full support of the whole Labour Party.”...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Report into Brownlee security breach should be released
    The Government and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) should release the report into former Minister of Transport Gerry Brownlee's airport security breach, the Green Party said today."The actions of a Minister of Transport breaching security at an airport are a matter...
    Greens | 17-11
  • Brownlee must ask CAA to release the report
    Gerry Brownlee must ask the Civil Aviation Authority to release the report that finds he broke the law in breaching airport security, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It is inexcusable for any minister, let alone the then-Transport Minister, to...
    Labour | 17-11
  • G20 climate comment increases pressure on NZ
    The G20 decision to include climate change in its communiqué despite Australia's attempt to ignore it, increases pressure on New Zealand to come up with a credible plan to cut emissions, the Green Party said today.The G20 Leaders Communiqué from...
    Greens | 17-11
  • NZ joins G20 climate problem
    Confirmation this morning by John Key that his Government plans to do nothing to turn around NZ's rapidly rising greenhouse emissions means that New Zealand joins Australia as one of the problem children at the G20 meeting in Brisbane, the...
    Greens | 16-11
  • IRD joins Corrections in Phillip Smith failure
    It is incomprehensible that IRD and Corrections were not able to stop Phillip Smith from rorting the tax system out of $50,000 until it was too late, given that he was a notoriously manipulative prisoner stuck in jail, says Labour’s...
    Labour | 13-11
  • The Government has to listen to Olly
    When even hard boiled property investors like Olly Newland  say first home buyers have been shafted by Loan to Value Ratio lending restrictions, surely it is time for the Government to listen, says Labour's housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  "Auckland landlord...
    Labour | 13-11
  • Key used GCSB for political ends prior to 2014 election
    New documents released to the Green Party show that Prime Minister John Key used New Zealand's intelligence services for the National Party's political ends a few days out from the 2014 election, the Green Party said today.Documents released to the...
    Greens | 13-11
  • Government not meeting its climate target
    The Government must front up to the fact that its own advisors are now saying that New Zealand is off target in any transition to a low carbon future, says Labour’s spokesperson on Climate Change Nanaia Mahuta.  “A briefing to...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Briefing reveals Defence facilities ‘increasingly unfit for purpose’
    The Defence Briefing to the Incoming Minister reveals a deteriorating state in Defence facilities that are no longer fit for purpose, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  “The briefing is heavily censored but still reveals that Defence camps, bases and...
    Labour | 12-11
  • New projections show New Zealand missing climate target
    Briefings to Incoming Ministers released today reveal the Government's climate policy is failing with projected emission more than double what is needed to meet National's 2050 target, the Green Party saidProjections released by the Ministry for the Environment, as part...
    Greens | 12-11
  • National’s highways far less efficient
    National’s new state highways have a far lower cost-benefit ratio than motorways built under the last Labour Government, making a mockery of the Government’s bluster that its road building will boost the economy, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “New...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Governor points finger at National on supply
    The Reserve Bank Governor has admitted he had to keep loan to value mortgage restrictions in place because the Government’s attempts to increase housing has fallen ‘a long way short’, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The thousands of first...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Did Collins cover up Slater’s OIA requests?
    Disgraced former Cabinet Minister Judith Collins must explain why she appears to have tried to hide Official Information Act requests she fulfilled for Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “New documents obtained by Labour show Judith...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Reserve Bank’s dairy warning must be heard
    The Reserve Bank’s warning that falling dairy prices are creating greater risks for the New Zealand economy must be taken seriously by Bill English and John Key, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “Dairy prices have nearly halved since February...
    Labour | 11-11
  • National’s housing failure keeps LVRs in place
    The Reserve Bank’s decision to leave loan-to-value ratio mortgage restrictions in place is further confirmation of National’s housing policy fiasco, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank would have lifted LVRs if they had seen any increase in...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Let’s see if it is plane sailing Mr Bridges
    Comments by Transport Minister Simon Bridges that Far North residents' anger over cutbacks to regional flights will be allayed by larger planes and cheaper fares out of Kerikeri, are just pure arrogance, says Labour’s Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis....
    Labour | 11-11
  • Commerce Commission inquiry needed into building supplies monopoly
    The Commerce Commission must stop dragging the chain and urgently investigate the anti-competitive practices in the building industry that are driving up the cost of building materials, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Competition in the building materials market is...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air New Zealand grounds Far North
    The announcement by Air New Zealand to close services from Kaitaia to Auckland will be an absolute disaster for the Far North, Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis says.  “Air New Zealand is sending a signal to the...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Pulling West Coast flights a savage blow
    Air New Zealand’s decision to withdraw its Westport service is another kick in the guts for an already struggling community, West Coast-Tasman MP, Damien O’Connor says.   “Having been involved in the West Coast’s efforts to get Air Nelson to return...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air NZ cuts economic lifelines to neglected regions
    Air New Zealand’s plans to cut its Eagle Air regional services to already struggling regions is a hammer blow to Westport, Whakatane and Kaitaia, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The regions of New Zealand are being abandoned by this...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Christchurch on the rent rack
    A jump of 20 per cent in weekly rents in the past year is a disaster for Christchurch, says Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Trade Me Property Rental Price index has rightly described the city as being a ‘...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Past time to act on warnings about palliative care
    Health officials have been warning the Government about a critical shortage of palliative care specialists for years, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Annette King says. A stocktake carried out for the Ministry of Health shows New Zealand’s end...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Report must spur Government into action
    The soaring cost of domestic violence and child abuse highlight the need for the Government to prioritise and act on the issue, says Labour's spokesperson for Social Development, Sue Moroney.“Findings from the Glenn Inquiry that show the problem is estimated...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Family safety paramount, then urgent review
    Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has some serious questions to answer over why a dangerous prison escapee, convicted of further crimes while in jail, managed to abscond while he was on approved temporary release, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“Phillip...
    Labour | 09-11
  • LVRs a failed experiment from Bill English
    Loan to value mortgage restrictions are a failed experiment from Bill English to tame Auckland house prices, that have caused collateral damage to first home buyers and other regions, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The possible end of LVR...
    Labour | 09-11
  • Govt books getting worse as economy slows
    National’s economic credibility is under serious scrutiny with its search for surplus becoming harder due to an economy far too reliant on the dairy industry, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National promised New Zealanders would get into surplus by...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Kiwis in pain because of Government underfunding
    New research showing one in three people needing elective surgery are being denied publicly-funded operations shows the Government must properly fund the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “For almost two years Labour has been warning about the...
    Labour | 06-11
  • National’s promised surplus looking doubtful
    Budget figures for the first quarter of the financial year released today by Treasury show the Government's goal of achieving a budget surplus is looking doubtful, the Green Party said today."National has staked its credibility on achieving a budget surplus...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour | 06-11
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour | 06-11
  • The Block NZ doing a better job than Nick Smith
    Nick Smith should consider calling in producers of The Block NZ with participants in the TV series completing more houses in two seasons than the Government’s failed Special Housing Area policy, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The Block NZ...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Meridian moves to kill competition from solar homes
    Big electricity companies are using their power to make it harder for families and businesses wanting to go solar and the National Government is doing nothing to help them, the Green Party said today. Meridian Energy announced today a 60-72...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Has John Key done all he could for Pike families?
    It will be forever on the conscience of John Key whether he did all he could to recover the remains of the 29 miners who died in Pike River, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says.  “The Prime Minister...
    Labour | 05-11
  • National further dashes hopes of new parents
    The National Government has once again shown its disdain for working parents by voting down proposals to extend paid parental leave, Labour MP Sue Moroney says.  “The Government vetoed an amended proposal that substantially reduced the cost of extending PPL...
    Labour | 05-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Why Phillip Smith is the least of our worries
    Well, it turns out Phillip Smith wasn’t half as clever as he thought he was, and he’s been arrested within a week. If the Prime Minister is through with making tasteless jokes, perhaps we can ramp down the media hysteria...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Constraining Credibility
      Most economists and members of the public – on both the right and the left – believe that economies are constrained by resource scarcity most of the time. In this view, economies are supply-constrained, and that the economic problem...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Migrant Labour, exploitation and free markets
    Once more we read about a horror story of virtual slavery for a migrant worker in a restaurant in Christchurch. The silver lining that in this case compensation should be paid is not assured. Often in situations like this the employer winds up...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • On baby boomers who give my generation unhelpful advice: JUST DON’T
    One of my mum’s colleagues recently told her that there is no money in what her daughter was doing; volunteering at a women’s refuge and writing on politics. This guy, dispensing all his pearls of wisdom, told my mother that...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Morbid Symptoms: Can Labour Be Born Anew?
    THE CHAIRS in the final meeting venue have been stacked away. All that expensive signage, commissioned for the benefit of the television cameras, no longer has a purpose. For the second time in just 14 months, Labour’s Leadership Contest is...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • What’s Small, White, and Having Trouble Attracting New People?
    If your answer was something intimately connected to the person of Peter Dunne … then you’d be right. Last night, P-Dunney decided to bring his comedy and/or hair stylings to the twitterverse; penning a potentially somewhat ill-advised tweet in which he compared...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • LATE at the Auckland Museum review – Slacktivisim: Its not just for Slack...
    Monday night is my yoga night. I’m not really very good it, I don’t really have the bendy, but I made a New Years resolution. This Monday however, I decided to put the yoga on prone and attend a gig...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Nanaia Mahuta – the Princess who roared
      This weeks Waatea news column – Nanaia Mahuta – the Princess who roared...
    The Daily Blog | 11-11
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Ashley Dwayne Guy v The Queen: Appeal Upheld
    The appellant, Mr Guy, was found guilty by a jury of a charge of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection. After the verdict it was discovered that, by error, the jury had been provided in the jury room with two...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Zonta Club to Take a Stand Against Gender-Based Violence
    During the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence (25 November – 10 December), the Zonta Club of Wellington, along with members of the local community, will join nearly 1,200 Zonta clubs in 67 countries for the Zonta Says NO...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • New UNFPA report links progress and power to young people
    A UN report launched today calls for investment in young people as they are essential to social and economic progress....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says: "Only in the public sector do you receive a payout for ‘resigning’....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ must not turn a blind eye to China’s human rights record
    Amnesty International is calling on New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key to raise China’s shameful human rights record during President Xi Jinping’s visit to New Zealand this week....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Treasury’s covert & extremely odd welfare consultation
    A report this morning that Treasury is ‘crowd sourcing’ ideas on welfare policy is news to Auckland Action Against Poverty, even though we are currently one of the most active groups in the area....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ invites Pacific peers to review development cooperation
    New Zealand has volunteered to be the first development partner in the Pacific region to undergo a review of its aid programme by Pacific island peers. The review will focus on New Zealand’s development cooperation and will give greater insight...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • EPMU joins Pike River families to mark fourth anniversary
    Representatives of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union are proud to stand with the Pike River families to mark four years since 29 men lost their lives. “This is a particularly solemn day given the recent announcements of Solid Energy...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • 2013 Assessment of New Zealand’s National Integrity Systems
    SPEAKER TUILOMA NERONI SLADE: Former Judge, International Criminal Court in the Hague, former legal counsel at the Commonwealth Secretariat, Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum 2008-2014. Introduced by Helen Sutch, Victoria University Council,...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Green Party ignoring Waimea’s environmental benefits
    Green Party MP Catherine Delahunty has overlooked the environmental benefits the proposed Waimea Community Dam will bring the Tasman community, says IrrigationNZ Chairperson Nicky Hyslop....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Women’s use of violence in violent relationships
    More than 80 percent of women who live with a physically violent partner will not initiate violence when they are not being hit, according to new research....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health
    Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health A credit score doesn’t only boil down a person’s entire financial history to a single number and somehow predict their credit-worthiness, it might also be saying something about a person’s...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • State Services Commissioner on Roger Sutton Investigation
    State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie today said the investigation into Roger Sutton’s conduct was robust. Roger Sutton chose to resign as Chief Executive of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) yesterday....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Predator Free NZ project welcomed
    Federated Farmers and the conservation organisation Forest & Bird are welcoming the Predator Free New Zealand initiative as an ambitious but achievable project that will have real benefits for conservation and the economy....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Stock rustling set to continue under lax laws
    The theft and illegal slaughter of farm stock can only be expected to continue if tougher laws are not introduced, said ACT Leader David Seymour today....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Visit of President Xi Jinping to New Zealand
    As president Xi Jinping of China pays short visit to New Zealand, of Friends of Tibet (NZ) has called upon Foreign Minister Hon Murray McCully and the Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key to raise the issue of Human Rights...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
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