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Poverty Watch 3

Written By: - Date published: 8:55 am, September 15th, 2012 - 34 comments
Categories: education, national, poverty - Tags: ,

Welcome to Poverty Watch, a weekly update on the National government’s lack of response to the urgent and growing issue of poverty in NZ.

National used to talk about “the underclass”, but talk is all they ever did. During their four years in power poverty and inequality have increased (a Waikato University professor says that poverty is our biggest growth industry). Report after report after report has condemned the rate of poverty in this country, and called on the government to act.  In a recent summary of the government’s targets and goals John Armstrong wrote: “Glaringly absent is a target for reducing child poverty”…

In relevant news this week: Labour re-ignited the debate on child poverty when David Shearer gave an excellent speech on education, including the promise of free food in low decile schools. The Greens started Champions for Children – check it out and sign up.

National responded with complete denial of the issues, saying that “the government is already doing enough to help families feed their kids”. If that is the case then why are 40,000 kids fed by charities and up to 80,000 going to school hungry? Organisations working with the poor say that Key is in poverty ‘la la land’.

Poverty Watch always ends with the following list, the National government’s response to rising poverty in NZ:

• National has not yet set any target for reducing poverty
• ?

34 comments on “Poverty Watch 3”

  1. The whole point of the NACTs campaign is to create a permanent ‘underclass’  made up of ‘hopeless cases’ who have to be treated as a separate sub-citizen category and ‘forced to be free’ from lives of crime, benefit fraud, serial breeding, substance abuse and general moral turpitude. Of course the NACTs will never act to create the social conditions that will allow the ‘underclass’ to be full citizens. That would mean paying a living wage, providing free health education and housing when the cost of these are a drain on capitalists profits. By setting up a category of sub-citizens you create a scapegoat for the social disaster of capitalism so the ruling class can parade itself as caring and sharing ‘winners’ and ‘heroes’ and laugh all the way to the banks.
     

    • BernyD 1.1

      Exactly, with grade scaling in schools, a minimum of 40% of kids are guaranteed to fail.
      (Without scaling it’d be 60%)

      Therefore they will be in lower income jobs, and without any kind of union backing they’ll be earning minimum wage regardless of how hard they work.
      The employers have the perfect excuse of “You can’t get blood out of a stone”.
      For anyone that falls into this category joining a union is their only hope of having fair workplace representation.

      Thet’s the New Zealand dream as it stands today.
      What a future, and we wonder why 60% of NZ gets drunk every night.

      People who don’t do well in standardised education systems used to learn on the job using Trade Unions and mentors, these days the capitalists rub their hands in glee, another slave at their mercy.

      • Heidi 1.1.1

        We don’t have scaling in schools.

        • QoT 1.1.1.1

          [citation needed]

          We certainly did when I was there (7th form 2001).

          • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.1.1

            Exam results have been scaled for at least a decade before that. And at university too.

            Heidi – why are you claiming we don’t scale results in schools? Heidi?

          • lprent 1.1.1.1.2

            Did when I was there – 7th form 1977

            They still do now in NCEA. Understand the process is moderated and scaled across the whole country from the couple of people I know who moderate in various subjects

    • just saying 1.2

      Well said Dave

  2. fatty 2

    Key response to the free food in schools was predictably lame. Firstly concerning fruit in schools.
    He said fruit was already provided, however this is a programme that was implemented when the hungry kids issue was not so bad. It was never an adequate programme, and is not even close now. The opposition needs to remind everyone that if this Government had their way the fruit in schools programme would have been gone in 2010.
    In response to Labour’s policy announcement, Key claims that the Government should not be providing breakfast, and he then claims that state schools are providing breakfasts already, so there is no need for further intervention. Unfortunately it is true that breakfast is being provided in many schools, so we must ask ourselves how good is this policy announced by Labour? How different is it from what is already happening?
    From what I can see there is not much difference in what Labour is proposing, compared to what is already happening. Just a few million dollars a year to have a better equipped ambulance at the bottom of the cliff. Or have I missed something?

    • BernyD 2.1

      It may indeed be happening, but we still need to hear them endorse said policies.
      They aren’t/don’t need to promote change they should be promoting civilised directions for society.
      You are stuck in a reactionary cycle, because all Nat does is rip up precedents and start again.

      • fatty 2.1.1

        “They aren’t/don’t need to promote change they should be promoting civilised directions for society.
        You are stuck in a reactionary cycle, because all Nat does is rip up precedents and start again.”

        I think if you look at the state of our society Labour does need to promote change…and they have needed to for years.
        Promoting civilised direction just sounds like an excuse for Labour being useless since the 1980s. A reactionary cycle would be better than giving into the tories and accepting their policies. Labour needs to rip up National’s precedents, rather than accepting them and softening them.

        • BernyD 2.1.1.1

          True

          • fatty 2.1.1.1.1

            I know what you mean about a civilised direction, but I think in order to create that, there needs to be a strong change from Labour. The food in schools is a good direction, but they should be throwing a lot of money into it and really standing behind it. Not only does that differentiate Labour from the Nats, but it also puts the blame firmly onto the neoliberal/thirdway ideology.
            Its OK to claim that schools should be a place where we feed children. Its OK to challenge and oppose the individual/parental responsibility mantra. Its OK to promote collectivism. Its OK to come out and say they will tax the rich to feed the kids.
            I can’t remember the last time Labour said it would tax the rich to pay for social services…maybe I’m not listening.

            • BernyD 2.1.1.1.1.1

              Ae, which is why I say they have to speak it, they can’t talk detail without direction.

              • fatty

                true…I am not one of those people that demand well detailed policies now, because I realise how tactical policy release is in winning an election. And I realise detailed policies must be announced at a precise time, and in a precise manner.
                It is that underlying direction of Labour that worries me…we’ll have to wait and see, in the meantime I would like to see some attacks on National, well planned attacks.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Sure, you don’t release policy now, but you must generate the political-economic discourse in communities now. You must frame real ideas, values and options so that the electorate understand the context when you do finally release the detailed policy.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.2

          I think if you look at the state of our society Labour does need to promote change…and they have needed to for years.

          But they won’t because, lo and behold, they believe in the system that is preventing us from making the best of ourselves. They believe in capitalism and so all they’ll do is manage capitalism so that things aren’t quite as bad as what it is under NACT.

    • mike e 2.2

      Labour Stealing Shonkeys promise of 2008 election campaign funny that!
      How dare they!

  3. IrishBill 3

    The nat’s political nous seems to have deserted them this year. They could have just pinched the food in schools policy and run with it. It costs bugger all and would’ve made them look a) like they were able to act in a bipartisan manner b) have seemed like they cared (and helped shore up the female vote) and c) taken the (albeit limited) wind out of Labour’s sails on the issue. It’s exactly the kind of thing Key would have done a year ago.

    Instead we saw them resort to a cynical and transparent “taniwha” attack on Shearer that has given him increased credibility in the beltway, and let Paula off the leash with a policy that’s gone down like a cup of cold sick with the electorate outside of the talkback minority. I wonder if if this increasingly clumsy politics got anything to do with Phil De Joux leaving Key’s office or if it’s just a sign of the increasing weakness of Key’s control of his cabinet?

    • fatty 3.1

      I don’t see this as being clumsy, or a loss of political nous.
      Instead, this is just the natural pattern of MMP. John Key is just doing what Helen Clark did. To become PM, you have to be centrist, then over a period of 2-3 terms you inch your way to the left or right. Clark was very centrist to begin with and by the end policies had become more leftish…we are now seeing Key move to the right.
      Thats why Shearer has been playing the middle ground, and hoping Key becomes as disliked as Clarke was in 07/08…it still may work.
      It sucks, we have a political system which almost demands third-way ideology. We are stuck in the mud and slowly sinking

      • IrishBill 3.1.1

        For just a few million dollars a year National could’ve bought themselves some space to move further right elsewhere.

        • fatty 3.1.1.1

          True…it would only cost a few million, but that would be pragmatic and I don’t see Key as being a pragmatic leader anymore. In the first term he was, and everything was considered on that money vs votes ratio (thirdway). National has now moved into ideology vs votes, and as a result ideology will now drive their policies (neoliberism).
          National no longer feel the need to buy votes and will now push individual responsibility, or in this case parental ideology. As time moves on it looks as though National have a real chance of gaining a third term by stigmatising the poor.
          Personally, I think (or hope) that this will cost them the next election, but National will look at the opposition and think that its worth the risk because even if they fail, this current centrist Labour Party will not reverse the damage to any great degree.
          At the moment National can move quicker to the right than they should be able to, they would be silly not to take this opportunity.

  4. Reagan Cline 4

    King’s College parents like the Keys pay big money for the school to feed the kids who board there.
    They then complain about paying for kids at public schools to get a school breakfast.
    The State pays or the kids parents or caregivers pay, what does it matter so long as the kids get a decent meal.
    It looks like in government policy it is more important for rich kids to be fed than poor kids.
    Fine if a few thousand kids are malnourised if in the long run the poor are weened off state dependancy.
    Socoliogists have shown that long term policy outcomes are not predictable.
    So the government should respond to what is happening right now and provide school meals.

  5. seeker 5

    Even 8 year old children from wealthy families are so concerned about the poverty of other children in our ‘pleasant for some’ land, that they have thoughtfully written to john key and David Shearer.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/7682600/Pupils-take-concerns-to-top

    One little girl who wrote to the prime minister said, “I wrote it because John Key should be giving kids breakfast in school because I can’t focus without the most important meal of the day. Some kids would be very happy to have food on their plates.”

    Another child was shocked that Kiwi kids went to school without breakfast. “I thought it only happens in other countries. I think children should have free breakfasts at school because sometimes they can go hungry and not focus.”

    “Out of the mouths of babes” I think the saying goes..

    However there is a jarring note to the article:

    “The Dominion Post forwarded the notes on to Mr Key’s office.

    A spokesman said: “Our standard practice with correspondence is to do the courtesy of responding directly to the writer, which we will do so in our usual way in this case when the correspondence is received.”

    And going by Grace’s experience with john key’s office from the thread under yesterday’s post by Eddie “Banks’ story coming apart; Key too weak to act” (hope you don’t mind me quoting you Grace)

    “I have written to MPs for many, many years and have received a reply to each and every letter I have ever written…

    This is the first time I’ve received a ‘thank you, f….. off’. In over 20 years of written correspondence.

    I felt moved to mention it, because it’s the first time it’s ever happened. That’s all.

    I still do not believe it’s hubris to expect a reasoned reply from a Minister of the Crown when writing to them. What else are their staff for?

    I do hope key’s office will not ignore children, and will respect and engage with them in a wise, well reasoned and considered way. Adult responses are an important way for our children to develop and learn from the environment they have been born into. What they make of it is a different matter!? We can only, as I said, hope.

    • Plastic Tolstoy 5.1

      He may well simply ignore them, because by the time they are old enough to vote he will be living in Hawaii already so what would he care? Or perhaps he will send a fluffy reply telling them how nice it is that they care about others, before politely explaining that they don’t understand yet that money doesn’t grow on trees.

      Whatever his response, it is heartening to see this kind of empathy from such young ones, many older New Zealanders could learn a thing or too from these kids. I only hope that, as these kids grow, they stick to their principles and don’t allow others to shame them into silence for their beliefs, as happened to me. It took years for me to realise that I actually was entitled to an opinion just like everyone else, that I wasn’t stupid or soft for believing people are more important than money.

  6. AC 6

    How about the schools getting closed down in CHCH. Most of which are low income areas. Some parents can’t afford to run a vehicle let alone pay for buses. To top this off if their child does not get to school they risk losing half their benefit. This could well lead to extra tension exerted on parents who are already struggling with the economic climate this government has created and with the aftermath of some destructive earthquakes (this could lead to more child abuse???) Things seem to be getting worse and worse with this National Government. Their secret agendas and lies are well below the standard of a third world dictatorship. They lack any sort of integrity and are only providing for the rich.

  7. Labour needs to start talking more about “fairness”. I think this something that resonates with most people – and goes to the heart of this poverty issue. If you look at the difference between the two parties, they both live a country of inequality, they just differ as to how they percieve it:

    Nats: It’s not fair, well, life’s not fair, work harder.
    Lab: It’s not fair, so lets even the playing field, and help those falling behind.

    That sums up the core philosophies. Fairness is what NZ is about, and Labour (should) speak to that better than National. That’s where the rhetoric has to go, if they want traction with this: Poverty is simply unfair, and that inequality is not good enough for New Zealand. We know cbild poverty is a terrible problem in NZ, now what are we going to do about it?

    • QoT 7.1

      Labour has been talking about “fairness”, TPM. Unfortunately it’s in the context of “you work hard, unlike those bloody beneficiaries who paint their own roofs, aren’t they scum.”

  8. National has not yet set any target for reducing poverty.

    You/they can set as many ‘targets’ as you want, everyone is going to fall way short of reality.
    And that is from now on, unless about 5 billion people exit this planet overnight, we are going to see more poverty and way less of everything we would wish to have.
    About the only thing we are not running out of at the moment is cadavers (+ 80 ish million a year) and stupidity.
    Everything we need to ‘lift people out of poverty’ is running out, including a stable enough environment to feed ourselves. We are fast running out of clean water, and if this insane species is going to survive for the foreseeable future, then ‘we’ are going to have to grow as much food in the next 50 years as we have grown in the past 10,000.
    Poverty is something we are all going to have to get use to, picture the per capita energy level of 1880 and divide it by 7 billion.
    We can’t have a planet full of billions of ‘middle class’ consumers (if that is the flip side to poverty?)
    Don’t get me wrong – poverty sucks, but it is just one more step on the road to extinction, or at least a step on the road to a population reduction …. Call it Human Colony Collapse.
    We are on the gradual downward slope, and starting to gain momentum. we need to understand that those were ‘the good old days’ and that was ‘as good as it gets’.
    We really are very stupid, we would much rather believe bullshit over facts nearly every time. It wouldn’t matter if we had Jesus H Christ and Mother Teresa running the world, our goose is cooked, we’ve dumped several epochs of crap into the atmosphere over the pasted 200 or so years, we are like a slow motion comet, or more accurately, we are now like the aftermath of a comet strike, like chlorine gas, oozing along the ground.
    And just to make sure we are totally screwed we are dragging out another epoch worth of crap via fracking.
    If we could grasp the facts, then poverty would look like a good thing.

  9. M Schwartz 9

    The Nat’s are making some progress by introducing some further obligations in exchange for entitlements. I would like to see more provision of contraception and family planning education for those who are unable to look after themselves, let alone kids though.

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    In the current leadership race for the Labour Party there are two candidates: Grant Robertson and David Cunliffe. There has been much discussion of their strengths and weaknesses, but one subject has been delicately avoided; perhaps because of political correctness,...
    DimPost | 30-09
  • Is New Zealand ready for an openly inane Prime Minister?
    In the current leadership race for the Labour Party there are two candidates: Grant Robertson and David Cunliffe. There has been much discussion of their strengths and weaknesses, but one subject has been delicately avoided; perhaps because of political correctness,...
    DimPost | 30-09
  • Hold fast to your Mana – Harawira
    Hone Harawira today called on the voters of Tai Tokerau to hold fast to their mana, and not be dictated to by those party leaders who have ganged together to tell them how to vote. “I call on our people...
    Mana | 18-09
  • Media Advisory – Interview availability
    This is to advise all media that Hone Harawira will be available in Auckland tomorrow, Friday the 19th of September from 7am to 4pm for interviews relating to his recent press releases. If you are interested in interviewing Mr Harawira on...
    Mana | 18-09
  • Labour stands on proud record on Suffrage Day
    Women have come a long way in the 121 years since New Zealand became the first country to give them the vote on September 19 1893, but there is still more to do, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Carol Beaumont says....
    Labour | 18-09
  • Polling Booths asked to treat Maori voters with respect
    “Polling booths without Maori roll voting papers, Maori people not being offered assistance to vote, people getting sent from Whangarei to Wellsford to vote, Maori people getting turned away from voting because they didn’t have their ‘easy vote’ card, Maori...
    Mana | 17-09
  • Aussie Liberals embroiled in Key campaign
    John Key needs to explain why Australia’s Liberal Party is interfering in New Zealand domestic politics and is encouraging Kiwi voters across the ditch to vote for National just days out from the election, Labour’s campaign spokesperson Annette King says....
    Labour | 17-09
  • The MANA Plan for Beneficiaries and Income in Waiariki
    Median Personal Income for Waiariki is $21,700. Over 13,000 Maori who live in Waiariki rely upon a form of government benefit including the Unemployment Benefit, Sickness Benefit, Domestic Purpose Benefit and the Invalids Benefit. “If you’re lucky enough to have...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Māori development crucial to New Zealand’s future
    Labour recognises the concern of Māori about child poverty and the rising costs of living, and in Government will make a real difference to the wellbeing of whānau and iwi, Labour’s Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. “As our Māori...
    Labour | 16-09
  • MAORI PARTY – DON’T COMPLAIN … WALK
    “If the Maori Party are serious about stopping government spying on NZ citizens then they should tell the Prime Minister to either stop doing it or they will walk away” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira, on...
    Mana | 16-09
  • JOHN KEY SUPPORTING LABOUR
    “There is something really sick about a National Party Prime Minister coming out in support of a Labour candidate” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira, after hearing that John Key is urging voters to back Labour in...
    Mana | 16-09
  • SHUT DOWN THIS GOVT NOT KAITI WINZ – Nikora
    “I’m going to make it as hard for you to get help as I can” is Paula Bennett’s message to the people of Kaiti  said MANA candidate Te Hāmua Nikora today in response to the news that National will close...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Winegums make for better polling – Harawira
    I wanted to laugh when I saw the Native Affairs poll the other night (Hone Harawira 38%, Kelvin Davis 37%) because it was almost the same as the one they did back in 2011”, said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau...
    Mana | 16-09
  • The Leadership of MTS Lied – Harawira
    “Normally I’m happy to tell people that I was right but when I received the news about the staff cuts at Maori Television, I had nothing but sympathy for the three Maori media leaders who are going to be made...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Privileges Complaint Laid against Prime Minister – Harawira
    MANA Movement Leader and Te Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira has today lodged a Privileges Complaint with the Speaker regarding the Prime Ministers denials in parliament that he knew anything about Kim Dotcom before 2012. “Information made public today appears...
    Mana | 15-09
  • Sharples’ new appointments are out of order
    The new appointments to the Waitangi Tribunal announced by Dr Pita Sharples this morning are completely out of order given the election is just five days away, says Labour's State Services spokesperson, Maryan Street. “This Government continues to show disdain...
    Labour | 15-09
  • MANA Movement Housing Policy
    “When families are living in cars, garages, cockroach-infested caravans and three families to a house then we have a housing crisis”, said MANA leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau, Hone Harawira. “When you have a housing crisis for low-income...
    Mana | 15-09
  • Bigger than the Foreshore and Seabed – Sykes
    “Over the past week I have received some disturbing information that has led myself and a number of Maori lawyers to conclude that this National - Maori Party - ACT and United Future Government are going to put an end to both...
    Mana | 14-09
  • MANA wants Te Reo Māori petition fulfilled
    Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau Annette Sykes, MANA candidate for Waiariki Te Hāmua Nikora, MANA candidate for Ikaroa Rāwhiti  “More than four decades have passed and the petition calling for Te Reo Māori in schools...
    Mana | 14-09
  • Primary focus on the critical issues
    A Labour Government will prioritise New Zealand’s agricultural sectors by recreating a Rural Affairs Minister and appointing a Primary Industry Council and a Chief Agricultural Adviser. Releasing Labour’s Primary Sector and Rural Affairs policies today, spokesperson Damien O’Connor says the...
    Labour | 12-09
  • Maori Television fears confirmed – Harawira
    ...
    Mana | 12-09
  • More ghost houses from National
    The Government’s desperate pre-election announcement of more ghost houses won’t fool Aucklanders wanting action on the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “These are ghost houses, to go with National’s ghost tax cut. Families cannot live in ghost...
    Labour | 12-09
  • National bows to union pressure over travel time
    National has reluctantly bowed to pressure from unions and adopted Labour’s fair and sensible policy to pay home support workers for the time they spend traveling between clients, Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “This decision is long overdue...
    Labour | 12-09
  • I feel sorry for Labour Party members and supporters
    I feel really sorry for the members and supporters of the Labour Party as they watch their caucus tear itself to shreds. And no matter what the outcome of the coming leadership race Labour members and supporters will be the...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • Ummmm, why is Auckland Transport spying on Aucklanders?
    Ummm. What? Sophisticated surveillance coming to Auckland Surveillance technology that uses high definition cameras and software that can put names to faces and owners to cars is coming to Auckland. The surveillance has the capability to also scan social media...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • It. Is. About. The. Economy. Stupid.
    Liam Dann does a good job of explaining the positive and negative issues looming for the NZ economy and as dairy prices plunge again overnight alongside a large Wall st sell off  and China Bank rumours begin, his case for the negative...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • Don’t think of it as reinvading Iraq, think of it as redecorating Iraq
    I think some NZers view Iraq like an episode of The Block. Yes Iraq is the worst country on the street, but with a bit of elbow grease by our SAS and some great deals down at Bunnings, hey presto we...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Mana Maori alliance
    Most Maori you speak to on the street can’t understand why Mana movement and  Maori Party don’t combine it confuses them why Maori are divided cross benches in Parliament instead of a unified political power that represents 15% of the...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • Party members and affiliates – the real losers in Labour’s leadership f...
    Hey, wanna do a back room deal that cuts the members and affiliates out? Cunliffe must be reeling. He has lost failed Ilam candidate James Dann. It must cut as deep as the loss of Steve Gibson. Apart from providing Claire...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, the election res...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, the election result...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • The rich get richer
    Nobel prize winner Paul Krugman highlights the growing inequality in this article in the New York Times. The left wing slogan that the “the rich get richer” is a fact of almost perverse power. The most recent period of expansion in the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • A brief word on reinvading Iraq
    So after telling the country before the election that NZ would not send forces to Iraq, lo and behold now he’s won the election with a full spectrum dominance political majority, Key is suddenly now looking to join the re-invasion of...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • A brief word on the importance of ACT, Maori Party and United Future to Nat...
    I’m a far right wing clown who attacks tax money going on anything collective, gimmie some cash and privilege.  One of the great successes of National has been to implement hard right policy but have it sold as moderate. For some NZers,...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Labour’s Angst
    Was Labour’s predictably low vote David Cunliffe’s fault? Was it policy? Was it something else that has aroused perceptions of electoral carnage? My analysis of the numbers suggests that, as uncertain voters made up their minds, there was a late...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Information wars: Gaza as “the last taboo”, the threat of mass surveill...
    “When the truth is replaced with silence” wrote the soviet dissident Yevgeni Yevtushenko, “the silence is a lie.” There has been a silence these past months full of noise, static and sound bites of those in power justifying their violence,...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • When the media say they covered Dirty Politics – did they?
    I was watching The Nation in the weekend, and watched the defenders of NZ media up against Minto telling him he was wrong in his claims of media bias and that the media covered Dirty Politics. I laughed. When the...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG – P Campbell – To the Left with love
    A week after the general election results I feel wrung out emotionally, having been through the disappointment, depression and anger of seeing  another right wing government elected overwhelmingly by winning support from the parts of NZ that will never benefit...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – I will be the new Labour Leader!
    One week after the election, while I was still waiting to be consulted about contributing to the review on what went wrong, what do you know? There is a leadership challenge. So instead of opting for a united, thoughtful and...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – A Prescient Post
    A very prescient pre-election post by Martyn Bradbury tells us why the Labour Party are at war now. “The NZ First-Labour Party attack strategy against Internet MANA better work” Despite Martyn Bradbury warning them this Right Wing strategy “Better Work”...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – W(h)ither Labour (!/?)
    There’s an old saying that success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan. Not so in the Labour Party, wherein soul-crushing defeat on a scale unseen since 1925 definitely has many fathers (and more than a few mothers and...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • At the end of the day…
    At the end of the day…...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Cynicism towards Key’s sudden desire to help children in poverty
    Cynicism towards Key’s sudden desire to help children in poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Internet MANA the election and the media
    I’ve been very critical of media reporting of Internet MANA during the election campaign and not surprised at the predictable response from representatives of the corporate media establishment. I wasn’t going to carry this further but was asked at the...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Rachel Jones – A superficial discourse analysis of a superfic...
    On Sunday there was a story about Paddy Gower and his detached retina in the Herald on Sunday. Really? I hear you ask. Really? Yes, really. Pam Corkery will have sprayed toast crumbs over her dressing gown. The reporter has become...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Terrorising Australia’s Muslim population
    We should be suspicious when 800 police conduct “terror” raids across Australia, but only one person is charged with a relevant terrorism offence (of which we know few details). We should be suspicious of the lurid tales of terrorists planning...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Another Labour leader has resigned and as per usual, the media lost its min...
    Another Labour leader has resigned and as per usual, the media lost its mind. I know the Labour party has its problems and I’m not even going to try to prescribe what should be done about it. But what I...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – Loyalty, Leadership and the Labour Party
    My first after the election and I can only say I’m feeling pretty sad.  It was a terrible result, and feels even more so knowing the number of volunteers hours, hard work & sacrifice made by so many people who...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • A Study in Party Stability
    . In terms of long-term stability, one party above stands above all others, with the exception of personality-driven groups such as NZ First and United Future. That party is the Greens. If the Labour Party wants to look elsewhere for...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • Cunliffe vs Robertson – Round 2
    Much to the disappointment of the NZ Herald and other right wing pundits who have decided they would like to appoint the next Labour leader, Cunliffe has surprised by deciding to damn the Caucus and appeal directly to the members...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • The tasks before the left and labour movement
    Anyone on the left would have been disappointed at the result of the election. There was an opportunity to win, but that got lost through a combination of factors. There were tactical decisions made by Labour, the Greens and Internet-Mana...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • From Fiji’s dictatorship to ‘democracy’ – the AUT student team on t...
    Mads Anneberg’s profile on Ricardo Morris and Repúblika. David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. THREE STUDENTS from AUT University covered Fiji’s historic “from dictatorship to democracy” general election this month. While the election arguably legitimised Voreqe Bainimarama’s so-called 2006...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • David Cunliffe Resigns As Labour Leader – Forces Robertson Out of the Bel...
    David Cunliffe has made a smart move, resigning as the leader of the Labour Party so as to force a leadership primary campaign. The move draws rival Grant Robertson out of the beltway to parts of the country where he...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • Deep thought vs Deep prejudice
    . . This letter to the editor appeared in The Listener, on 27 September, and caught my attention; . . Mr Dawson wrote in response to one of those typically unthinking comments which  condemned the poor for their “unbridled, reckless...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • The NZ National voters elected
    The NZ National voters elected...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – The post election postmortem is giving me post p...
    I feel the need to contribute to the discourse. This is a new experience for me. Not having an opinion, but expressing it on a popular forum in a public sphere. That’s why I have waited till now and put...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • A dictionary of education terms and definitions, brought to you by the let...
    Free to all TDB readers, please enjoy your very own cut-out-and-keep handy primer of terms that I predict you will need to know over the next three years… Achievement Gap (noun) Synonym for wealth gap. ACT (abstract noun) Intangible. Reported to exist in...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • A Mines Rescue brigadesman’s perspective on the Pike River Mine
    My husband and I lived in Greymouth in 2010, we were a coal mining family.  The day Pike River Mine blew up and the days following changed us profoundly, as it did for so many.  This is a Mines Rescue...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • The Left Triumphant! A Counterfactual History of the Last Twelve Months.
    DID IT REALLY HAVE TO END LIKE THIS? Reading through the commentary threads of the left-wing blogs it is impossible to not feel the anger; the sense of betrayal; the impression of having had something vital ripped from their grasp;...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • GUEST BLOG – Myles Thomas: The media won it!
    Make no mistake, John Key is a clever communicator – reasonable, authoritative and relaxed – but without the media he wouldn’t be PM. Depending on your viewpoint, New Zealand’s news media are either a bunch of Grey Lynn lefties or...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • Not Learning Lessons Past: the West’s Response to IS
    In an earlier posting Ukraine, United Kingdom, Ireland, Scotland, I noted that the first lesson of conflict learned by Robert McNamara was “understand your adversary”. If we have honourable objectives, our first and most important weapon is empathy. In the Vietnam War,...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Dr Jarrod Gilbert – Proof of David Farrar’s deception: my ...
    In the lead up to the election the Minister of Corrections Anne Tolley launched a gang policy. In order to justify the government’s approach she used gang figures that overstated the gang problem. Not by a little bit, but a...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • SPECIAL FEATURE: Stuart Nash – Red To The Rescue?
    SPECIAL FEATURE by Selwyn Manning. IF THE ELECTION RESULT which was dished out to Labour was not enough to incite an immediate leadership primary, then the caucus’ refusal to recognise David Cunliffe as the leader should cement it. Now is...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • Has the one party state crackdown begun already? Left wing NZ activist grou...
    Well known left wing activist social media group, ‘John Key Has Left Down NZ’ has been shut down on Facebook. At 11.40pm last night, Facebook, without any warning shut the group down siting a breach of terms of service as...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • Why Cunliffe should probably just let Nash & Robertson win
    We have to face some very unpalatable home truths. If you are a left wing political person, best you put your vote now to the Green Party, although you’ll have to do that all the while the Greens frantically tell you...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • The graceless win of Kelvin Davis
    The graceless win of Cameron Slater’s mate in the North, Kelvin Davis is difficult to swallow. Here Cameron Slater’s mate in the North is shitting on Hone Harawira by calling Hone all steam, no hangi as Kelvin rubs his ganged up win into...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • So Labour shifted too far to the left?
    So Labour shifted too far to the left?   Here’s the ill-judged view of Josie Pagani in the Pundit “Labour must change”: “At the last election I made myself a heretic when I wrote a column mentioning how unpopular the...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • Uncomplicated Loyalties: Why Cunliffe and the Labour Left Cannot Win
    THE STORY of David Cunliffe’s leadership of the Labour Party has been one of missed opportunities and unforced errors. That he was the only choice available to those who wanted to rid the Labour Party of its neoliberal cuckoos is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • So we can expect this now?
    So we can expect this now?...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Can Labour be saved? Why Whaleoil & National won and why we need a new ...
    As the shock of my optimism that NZers would recoil from the real John Key as exposed by Dirty Politics and mass surveillance duplicities wears off, I am surprised to find that the right in NZ are not content with...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Three more years (up shit creek and paddling hard)
    “If the future is not green, there is no future. If the future is not you, there is no future”. Emma Thompson’s stirring words to the climate marchers in London last Sunday are worth considering in the aftermath of the...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • One Party State
    In years to come this election will be seen as a historic turning point towards one party rule. I don`t mean this literally, absolute single party dictatorship is not in prospect. In the New Zealand context though, one party has...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • No More. The Left Falls.
    . We cannot be beaten down Because we are down already. We can only rise up and if you should beat us down, We will rise again. And again. And again… And when you tire of beating us down, We...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Hang tight everyone – Marama Davidson campaign reflection
    To the many people who had expressed their overwhelming support for me to enter Parliament this election – thank you. That the Greens held steady in a big loss for progressive politics is an achievement. We are hopeful that after...
    The Daily Blog | 22-09
  • Speaker leads delegation to CPA Conference
    Strengthening New Zealand’s ties with parliaments from across the world will be the focus of the upcoming delegation to the 60th Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Conference in Yaoundé, Cameroon from 4-10 October and the 131st Inter-Parliamentary...
    Scoop politics | 02-10
  • Response to Russell Brown and Tertiary Education Union
    The allegation that I have worked with others to discredit public health efforts is wrong. My public comments in relation to public health researchers have been where academics have mislead the public about official support or endorsement, and where...
    Scoop politics | 02-10
  • 17 jobs lost as Bridon/Cookes reaches the end of its rope
    Seventeen workers at the iconic Bridon/Cookes wire rope company in Auckland are to be made redundant as the company ceases production in New Zealand. The company has blamed the high New Zealand dollar for making it uncompetitive to keep the...
    Scoop politics | 02-10
  • Slip in University Rankings – Funding Not the Problem
    Responding to the slippage of New Zealand universities' rankings , Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says:...
    Scoop politics | 02-10
  • Time to rethink police chases, says safety campaigner
    Police chases are dangerous and generally unnecessary, says the American Federal Bureau of Investigation....
    Scoop politics | 02-10
  • Robertson now expected to be Labour leader by Xmas
    Grant Robertson is now overwhelmingly picked to become the next leader of the Labour Party by the end of the year, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict. Another potential Labour...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Documenting historic Māori land law cases for the first time
    A new book from Victoria University of Wellington’s Faculty of Law will continue to put the spotlight on Māori Land Law judgments which have never before been published....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • ‘Oily’ people greet Petroleum Summit diners
    Greenpeace activists smeared in fake oil have greeted guests arriving at the part-Statoil sponsored Petroleum Summit dinner this evening....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Key Decisions Made About Labour’s Leadership Election
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has made the key decisions about the timetable and process around the election of Labour’s Party Leader. The result will be announced on Tuesday 18th November, following a comprehensive and extensive process unique...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Suspected $6 Million Dollar Wananga Fraud Alarming
    The Taxpayers’ Union is calling on on the Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi to front up over claims the Wananga has pocketed government overpayments amounting to $6 million of taxpayers' money. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Submissions sought on herbicide for weed control in maize
    The Environmental Protection Authority is calling for submissions on a herbicide to improve broadleaf weed control in maize. The substance CADET contains 100g fluthiacet-methyl in the form of an emulsifiable concentrate and would contain a new active ingredient...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Jesse Mulligan Lives Below Poverty Line
    Jesse Mulligan Lives Below Poverty Line TV personality Jesse Mulligan will live on the equivalent of the extreme poverty line this October in order to raise awareness of sex trafficking. Mulligan will survive on $2.25 for his food from October...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Narratives from the 2014 Election: What do we learn?
    Narratives from the 2014 Election: What do we learn? - Sue Bradford, Russell Brown & Kirk Serpes discuss....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Voices from Oceania to speak out on climate change
    Voices from Oceania to speak out on climate change at launch of Pacific environment report...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Changes to Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre messages
    The Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management advises that while changes to Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre messages come into effect from today (Wednesday 1 October), the Ministry has been, and remains, the authoritative voice for tsunami...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Police remove banner at Statoil Offices in Wellington
    Oil Free Wellington hung a banner at 9:30 this morning at the Statoil office headquarters in Wellington as the Petroleum Summit opened in Auckland. The banner, which read 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil', has now been removed...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Mixed massages raise concerns
    Mixed massages raise concerns for Te Taumata Kaumatua Ngapuhi nui tonu, and Te Wakaminenga O nga Hapu Ngapuhi....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Union Slams Port Boss’s Pay Rise
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) says Lyttelton Port CEO Peter Davie’s 18% wage rise, taking his pay packet to $1.24m, is unjustified and inflammatory. ‘Lyttelton port has an appalling health and safety record, with three deaths on...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Prisons expert Ron Nikkel to speak in Auckland October 15
    Prison Fellowship NZ and JustSpeak have the privilege of hosting the former president of Prison Fellowship International, Ron Nikkel....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Hundreds of educators protest IES in Rotorua
    Four hundred educators from around the country took their opposition to the Government's controversial Investing in Educational Success policy to the public today....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Crime drops by 3.2 % in the 2013 / 2014 financial year
    Criminal offences dropped by 3.2 % in the last financial year according to figures released today through Statistics New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Narratives from the 2014 Election: what do we learn?
    I would like to invite you to a Fabians Reflection on "Dirty Politics, Dotcom and Labour’s worst result" with Colin James, Keith Ng, Stephanie Rodgers and Richard Harman. They will provide a debrief of analysis and lessons from the 2014...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Oil Free Wellington drops banner from Statoil headquarters
    Today members of Oil Free Wellington have targeted the offices of Statoil, by attaching a banner reading 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil' to the entrance of Vodafone on the Quay Midland Park, where Statoil's New Zealand office...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Media Statement from Karen Price
    “After a period of intense media attention and scrutiny of our family, I set up and used an anonymous Twitter account over the weekend and made a number of comments that I deeply regret....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Greenpeace disrupts Simon Bridges’ speech to oil industry
    Greenpeace activists have disrupted the opening speech by Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges at the Petroleum Summit in Auckland this morning....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • New Zealand Red Cross Responds to Drought in Tonga
    New Zealand Red Cross has sent an aid worker and two desalination units, to turn seawater into safe drinking water in the drought-hit Ha’apai islands of Tonga....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Can you ever tell if an email is real or forged?
    Computer industry veteran Brian Eardley-Wilmot warns that we should never take claims about stolen emails at face value....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • NZ MPs to attend the ASPG Annual Conference in Sydney
    New Zealand MPs to attend the Australasian Study of Parliament Group Annual Conference in Sydney...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Independent Maori seats still needed in Parliament
    “He’s got to be joking!” is the reaction of the president of the Maori Party, Rangimarie Naida Glavish to a call by a former Labour Minister of Maori Affairs, Dover Samuels, for debate by Maori on whether the Maori electorates...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Support for Democratic Rights in Hong Kong
    Rallies supporting the rights for universal suffrage will take place all over New Zealand today and tomorrow...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Trout Mass-Poisoned in New Zealand
    Trout Mass-Poisoned in New Zealand The Graf Boys New Zealand has some of the best trout fishing in the world! Every year thousands of international visitors wade pristine rivers in search of the freshwater game fish....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • New Zealand’s 2014 Hottest Vegetarians Crowned
    With winter gone things are heating up, and things just got even hotter with the crowning of New Zealand’s hottest vegetarians, says animal advocacy group SAFE. Marking World Vegetarian Day, 1st October, director James Napier Robertson and actor...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • A day to remember our duty to look after our senior citizens
    Human Rights Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue says International Day of the Older Person (1 October) is a United Nations day to celebrate our senior citizens, but also acknowledge the need to protect our kaumatua, or older people from abuse and...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Clear data needed on impact of benefit sanctions on children
    A lack of data on benefit sanctions means there is no way of knowing whether welfare reform is helping or harming children, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • The socialist alternative to austerity and war
    Public meeting: After the New Zealand election—the socialist alternative to austerity and war By Tom Peters 29 September 2014...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • New recruits to boost border protection
    Twenty six new recruits began an intensive nine-week training course in Auckland today that will see them graduate as Customs officers in time for the busy summer season....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Dwindling Mallard population shows up ‘pest’ myth
    The pro hunting organisation Fish & Game is researching the causes of the decline of the mallard duck population, upset at the prospect of fewer ducks to kill....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Support for Democratic Rights in Hong Kong
    New Zealanders in Auckland will gather on Wednesday to support the rights for universal suffrage in Hong Kong....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Campbell Live Exclusive Interview with David Cunliffe
    David Cunliffe resigned as leader of the Labour party on Saturday; but he still wants the top job....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Action needed on cycling safety
    “Clearly we aren't doing enough to protect the 1.5 million New Zealanders who ride bikes,” said Mr Morgan....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • World Rivers Day Passes Without A Whimper
    Sunday 28 September was World Rivers Day to celebrate clean, flowing rivers and caring about them. But a recreation-conservation advocacy the Council of Outdoor Recreation Associations of NZ (CORANZ) says the day seems to have slipped by without...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • The Kiwifruit Claim: Q&A
    1. Who is running The Kiwifruit Claim? The Kiwifruit Claim was founded by kiwifruit growers representing well in excess of 10% of the industry. 2. Why are you running this claim? The introduction of Psa into New Zealand had devastating...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Fed Farmers Need to Be Weaned
    The Taxpayers’ Union is calling on Federated Farmers to make a firm commitment to reject any future Government funding, after it was revealed that the lobby group had received over $200,000 of payments in recent years....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Children paying the price for charter school stitch up
    New Zealand children will be paying a high price for a one-seat deal between ACT and National, with an expansion of the beleaguered charter school system says education union NZEI Te Riu Roa....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Hikoi From North Reaches Oil Conference Tomorrow
    Today: The Hikoi opposing Statoil plans for seismic testing and deep sea oil drilling has marched through Dargaville and later be welcomed to Piringatahi Marae, West Harbour,Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Communities Still Count
    The efforts of many organisations to influence the electorate and the political parties they voted for in the lead up to the 2014 Election is over. The voting public has spoken and provided a strong endorsement to the centre-right National...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Eleven social enterprises get ready to take off
    Eleven teams from across the country will take part in the Launchpad, Ākina’s programme to get social enterprise ideas off the ground....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • An open letter to the Prime Minister
    in which Transparency International New Zealand asks the Prime Minister to ensure integrity underpins all work he leads "in the best interests of all New Zealanders"...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Paula Bennett ‘great work’ acknowledged – McVicar
    “Paula Bennett, as Minister of Social Development, has contributed significantly in lowering our crime rate and preventing further victims.” - McVicar...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Key’s Restraint in Propping up ACT Welcomed
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming the announcement that ACT MP David Seymour will not be appointed as a Minister....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
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