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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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      How to deal with a glass ceiling? I agree with John Key and Steven Joyce on a couple of points they stressed to the party faithful gathered in Wellington for their recent election year conference. Yes, as John Key...
    Political Scientist | 05-07
  • Petition to Demand Electoral Commission Investigation into Media Links to N...
    During an election year, amounts spent on advertising by Political Parties are carefully monitored and controlled.  The Electoral Commission is supposed to oversee spending, and ensure dishonest Political Parties like the National Party do not cheat. This year has seen...
    An average kiwi | 04-07
  • Lisa Owen interviews Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples
    Press Release – The Nation Pita Sharples says Hone Harawiras split from the Maori Party has been quite damaging and cost Maori people a solid voice in parliament.Lisa Owen interviews founding Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples Headlines: Pita Sharples says...
    Its our future | 04-07
  • Prime Minister is breaking the rules over MFAT incident
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says the Prime Minister is at odds with both the Cabinet manual and the State...
    PSA | 04-07
  • Labouring under the illusion of knowledge
    We have just had our annual Potentia conference. Each year we step it up; looking […] The post Labouring under the illusion of knowledge appeared first on Connected....
    Potentia | 04-07
  • Te Hamua to do ice challenge so others can survive cancer too
    At noon tomorrow in the Kaiti Mall in Gisborne, Te Hamua Nikora, MANA candidate for Ikaroa Rawhiti, is taking on the ice challenge to raise awareness of the importance of getting regular health checks for testicular cancer and raise funds...
    Mana | 10-07
  • National breaks promise to insulate every state house
    National has broken its promise to insulate every state house by the end of 2013, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today."Of the 68,386 houses under Housing New Zealand's management, 30 percent have not been insulated. That is a dismal...
    Greens | 09-07
  • McCully should stand down while review considers his actions
    The Green Party is calling for the review into Foreign Affairs' handling of allegations of attempted rape by a Malaysian Diplomat to be expanded to cover actions of Ministers, and for the Minister of Foreign Affairs to stand down while...
    Greens | 09-07
  • No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto
    “Labour’s education policy announcements last weekend have several welcome features which would be supported by Mana but we are concerned at the “user pays” proposal for children to get the educational benefits of access to the internet,” says Mana Education...
    Mana | 09-07
  • Internet Mana – “the Roadtrip!”
    Internet MANA will change the Government because it’s time to create an inclusive and independent Aotearoa. We are not afraid to disrupt the status quo, to fix what is not working and innovate with new ideas. Let’s reconnect New Zealand,...
    Mana | 09-07
  • Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles
    Evidence heard in today's inquest into the death of Jane Farrelly highlights the Police's ongoing failure to protect people on bicycles, the Green Party said today. The Police decided not to prosecute the driver involved in a fatal collision with...
    Greens | 09-07
  • High cost of storm damage sign of things to come
    New figures showing storm damage cost New Zealand $77 million in the first half of the year are a reminder of what we're up against with climate change, the Green Party said today.According to the Insurance Council of New Zealand,...
    Greens | 09-07
  • SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent
    National has done a deal with a company that continues to flout New Zealand's gambling regulations, Green Party gambling spokesperson Denise Roche said today.In a media sting earlier this year, an elderly man was allowed to play pokie machines continuously...
    Greens | 09-07
  • Please explain Minister… yet again
    Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy needs to explain what is going on with our export of sheep casings to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Our exports of partially processed casings to China have been halted and no...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’
    A Labour Government will put ICT at the highest level of Government by creating the position of Chief Technology Officer to directly advise the Prime Minister and Cabinet on Information Technology issues, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Reporting directly...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high
    There’s no cause for celebration with the latest Household Incomes Report showing the number of children living in severe poverty has reached its highest level this century, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “New Zealand once valued itself as the...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Government in denial over income inequality
    Today’s Household Incomes Report from MSD underscores National’s continued failure to recognise inequality is a problem and is getting worse, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “The report shows income inequality has increased over the past year and remains higher...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes
    National’s decision to cut nearly $2.5 million from adult and community education in Canterbury over the past five years was short-sighted and Labour is committed to restoring funding for the sector, Labour’s Associate Tertiary Education spokesperson Megan Woods says. “The...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis
    Latest Government data proves John Key is not working for all New Zealanders as the incomes of the poorest half of kiwis stayed the same in the 6 years under National, while the top 20 percent's rose by thousands, the...
    Greens | 08-07
  • Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour
    Labour has been very clear that it is necessary to review and evaluate the effectiveness of Whanau Ora for Māori, says Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. "I was pleased to meet with social service, youth, justice and health providers who...
    Labour | 08-07
  • No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy?
    Another significant shortfall in the Government’s books suggests the economic recovery may have already passed most New Zealanders by, Labour’ Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “With unemployment still high, wage rates stagnating and inequality widening, only the lucky few are...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Survey shows parents want smaller class sizes
    A new survey finding most parents believe class sizes are too big shows Labour is right to reduce them, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The Post-Primary Teachers' Association survey of 750 people conducted by UMR Research found 54 per...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Crime targets no excuse for fewer prosecutions
    Police are being instructed to charge fewer people in order to meet National’s crime reduction targets, Labour says. “Front line police and others in the criminal justice system are telling us police have had pressure put on by senior officers...
    Labour | 07-07
  • QV figures show two-track housing market
    The two-track housing market that has developed under National is underlined in QV’s latest report, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “QV’s index shows many homeowners in the regions are facing declining equity in their properties, while in Auckland and...
    Labour | 07-07
  • Housing figures National’s shame
    The number of Auckland households in urgent and serious need of housing has increased tenfold since March 2012, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.The Ministry of Social Development, which took over Housing New Zealand's assessment responsibility for social housing...
    Greens | 07-07
  • Fed Farmers leading wrong way on water
    Federated Farmers needs to show greater leadership on water quality, the Green Party said today. The Green Party is responding to claims by the outgoing and incoming Federated Farmers' dairy section chairs that 'there is no need for urgent action"...
    Greens | 07-07
  • John Key must get whaling assurance from Abe
    John Key must seek a concrete assurance from Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that Japan will not flout the International Court of Justice's (ICJ) ruling on whaling, the Green Party said today.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is meeting with...
    Greens | 06-07
  • HAVE A KITKAT DAVID, THERE’S A LONG WAY TO GO YET – Harawira
    “Internet MANA is not ruling out the possibility of a entering into coalition with Labour after the election”, said Internet MANA leader Hone Harawira with tongue firmly in cheek, after Labour leader David Cuniliffe said it was ‘highly unlikely’ that...
    Mana | 06-07
  • Government underfunding jeopardises recycling
    The Government's underfunding of the TV Takeback scheme jeopardises the whole e-waste drop-off network across the country, the Green Party said today. The TV Takeback scheme was put in place to deal with the glut of old TVs needing to...
    Greens | 04-07
  • Whaling must be top of agenda for Japan PM visit
    New Zealand must make protecting whales a priority during next week's visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Green Party oceans spokesperson Gareth Hughes said today.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will make an official visit to New Zealand next week...
    Greens | 04-07
  • ACC investments risking native species
    The National Government has invested in a gold drilling company whose activities threaten a critically endangered native frog species, the Green Party has revealed today.Despite being a signatory to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC)...
    Greens | 03-07
  • Small class sizes and school meals get another big tick in schools report
    “Congratulations to the Child Poverty Action Group for making it crystal clear what’s needed to ensure kids from the least well-off communities can get the best out of school” said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau. ...
    Mana | 03-07
  • Government’s bottom lines for water create a licence to pollute
    The Government has pulled the plug on cleaning up our dirty rivers so they are safe for swimming, the Green Party said today. The Green Party was commenting on the Government's national bottom lines for water quality released today by...
    Greens | 02-07
  • Green Party’s answer to climate Big Ask
    The Green Party has welcomed a Gen Zero report calling for concrete climate commitments from all parties ahead of the election."Gen Zero's Big Ask report is a timely reminder about what real climate action looks like," said Green Party Climate...
    Greens | 02-07
  • Shots fired at Mana office – Harawira
    “I get threatened with violence and I get death threats, but when somebody starts taking shots at my office then that’s another matter altogether”,  said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira after shots were fired at one of...
    Mana | 01-07
  • Protecting Papatuanuku a Priority for MANA – Harawira
    “Big ups to Greenpeace for their Climate Voter initiative http://www.climatevoter.org.nz/”, said Hone Harawira, MANA leader and MP for Tai Tokerau. “Letting people see which parties stand up for Papatuanuku and which parties stand for overdevelopment and pollution should help focus their...
    Mana | 01-07
  • Ae Marika! 1 July 2014
    I got a really good response to last week’s article about forestry safety, including this gem from an old mate - “Back in the early 70′s our Maori bush gangers showed you the ropes. You never forgot a thing they...
    Mana | 30-06
  • Green Party MP Holly Walker to step down from party list
    Green Party MP Holly Walker has decided to withdraw from the party's list in the upcoming election and will not seek a second term in Parliament. Ms Walker was number 12 on the Green Party list."Unfortunately, a recent unexpected change...
    Greens | 30-06
  • Pasifika Immigration Plans for Labour- too little, too late – James Papal...
    The Labour Party has recently announced that it has plans to speed up family reunification for Pasifika people. “I have seen these plans and I believe that these are too timid” says MANA Pasifika vice President, James Papali’i. “After waiting...
    Mana | 30-06
  • Support for USA in Iraq “not a deal to die for” – Harawira
    “When John Key says ‘New Zealand fully supports the current steps announced by President Obama (in Iraq) 100%’ he is one step away from committing our troops simply to get a good trade deal with the USA,” said MANA Leader...
    Mana | 24-06
  • Ae Marika! 23 June 2014
    Another key spot for me to meet people is Auckland Airport, on my way back from parliament to either go to Waitakere or the North Shore, or to catch link flights to Whangarei, Kerikeri, or Kaitaia on constituency business. Every...
    Mana | 23-06
  • Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release “Motorists passing people on bicycles and other vulnerable road users owe them a high duty of care.”...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • High cost of storm damage sign of things to come
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: High cost of storm damage sign of things to come Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release New figures showing storm damage cost New Zealand $77 million in the first half of...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release National’s deal with SkyCity means that a company that flout’s New Zealand’s gambling regulations has the opportunity to greatly...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Please explain Minister… yet again
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Please explain Minister… yet again Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy needs to explain what is going on with our export of sheep casings to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says....
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’ A Labour Government will put ICT at the highest level of Government by creating the position of Chief Technology Officer to directly advise the...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Murray McCully must go: sign the petition to demand his resignation
    Sign the petition to demand Murray McCully resign and stand with Tania Billingsley and the thousands of women who have survived sexual assault in New Zealand. Tania Billingsley, who is at the centre of the Malaysian diplomat case, has lifted her own...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • More mining our protected places
    Today is the last day for submissions on Chatham Rock Phosphate’s (CRP) marine consent application to mine the seabed in a protected area, in our most productive fishery. I just got my submission in which you can read here. This...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Poverty and inequality denial are no reasons for celebration
    The headlines proclaim that concerns about poverty and inequality is just a lot of left wing PC guilt squawking because according to cherry picked statistics there isn’t really any inequality or poverty. Cue a rousing round of ‘we don’t know...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • National breaks promise to insulate every state house
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: National breaks promise to insulate every state house Thursday, 10 Jul 2014 | Press Release “It’s not just a broken promise, it’s poor economics.” National has broken its promise to insulate every...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • “World Class Welfare System” My Arse. Come Clean Nathan Guy!
    Pigs are not safe in New Zealand. How many farms do activists have to film before the Ministry of Primary Industries comes clean and admits their accreditation scheme is an absolute failure? Do activists need to do the job of...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Tania Billingsley – hero
    The astounding courage exhibited by Tania Billingsley last night on 3rd Degree should put the Government to shame. Her criticism of those charged with upholding her rights is to the bone and righteous… The woman at the centre of a...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • McCully should stand down while review considers his actions
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: McCully should stand down while review considers his actions Thursday, 10 Jul 2014 | Press Release Mr McCully would never have considered a TV apology good enough for the Prime Minister and...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, why I love John ...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • If Oprah had been the ref for the Brazil-Germany game
    If Oprah had been the ref for the Brazil-Germany game...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto
    MIL OSI – Source: Mana Movement – Headline: No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto  Posted on July 10, 2014 by admin in John Minto, Press Releases“Labour’s education policy announcements last weekend have several welcome features which...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • 7 reasons why online voting isn’t a solution
    Online voting is being waved around again as a means to increase participation.  Here are the 7 reasons why I think online voting is a bad idea. 1 – 21% of those asked why theory didn’t vote in 2011 gave ‘didn’t...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Greg Presland – National and Pacifica
    John Key and National have recently been claiming that Pacifica are leaving Labour en masse and are heading towards National.  I am sorry John but there is no chance of this happening.  But Key and co have been able to get the...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Police sweeping domestic violence under the carpet?
    Pressure to lower stats – MPPolice were under government orders to “minimise” the number of domestic violence charges they lay to make crime statistics look good, Labour MP Andrew Little claimed yesterday. This latest allegation of Police downplaying domestic violence...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Invite: AGM & Political Forum
    MIL OSI – Source: Child Poverty Action Group – Headline: Invite: AGM & Political ForumCPAG AGM & Election Year Political Forum 08 July 2014 When: Wednesday 30 July Where: St Columba Centre, 40 Vermont St, Ponsonby, Auckland RSVP here! Please...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Housing figures National’s shame
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Housing figures National’s shame Monday, 07 Jul 2014 | Press Release “These figures are a shame on the Government. All New Zealanders deserve secure housing, whether renting or owning.” The number of...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • QV figures show two-track housing market
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: QV figures show two-track housing market The two-track housing market that has developed under National is underlined in QV’s latest report, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “QV’s index shows many homeowners...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • GUEST POST: Michael Wood – Just Structures
    The headline number at this weekend’s Labour Congress was a very good speech from David Cunliffe, the centre-piece of which was the well-received announcement on class sizes. The Congress ended on a high note, with delegates energised and positive media...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Cunliffe vs Key
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • A letter to Hekia
    A letter to Hekia...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Animal abuse unacceptable for pigs and consumers
    I was a kid on pig farms in the 1970s. Piglets were castrated using a scalpel without anaesthetic, wire cutters were used to trim their teeth and cut off their tails. Wire was forced through their sensitive snouts. Row upon...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • A better Canterbury and a better NZ
    Labour’s first 100 days is going to be a busy time – we’ve got a lot to change!  Kick-starting the Canterbury recovery is going to be a crucial part of those first 100 days.  Labour has announced several Canterbury specific...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Dear Leader loves you! Our cult of no personality
    .   The Cult of Dear Leader . It was inevitable. The poll-rated ‘popularity’ of Prime Minister has evolved into a full-blown, carefully-choreographed, Cult of Personality the likes of which this country has never before seen. The recent National Party...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs
    MIL OSI – Source: CTU – Headline: Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs “The effects on families of the global financial crisis, lack of adjustment of the accommodation supplement and high housing costs show...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Low income families hit hard
    MIL OSI – Source: Unite Union – Headline: Low income families hit hard Council of Trade Unions – Media Release Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs “The effects on families of the global financial...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high There’s no cause for celebration with the latest Household Incomes Report showing the number of children living in severe poverty has reached its...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Government in denial over income inequality
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Government in denial over income inequality Today’s Household Incomes Report from MSD underscores National’s continued failure to recognise inequality is a problem and is getting worse, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says....
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes National’s decision to cut nearly $2.5 million from adult and community education in Canterbury over the past five years was short-sighted and Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis Tuesday, 08 Jul 2014 | Press Release The latest Household Incomes Survey shows income inequality widening further under National, but that it is...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour Labour has been very clear that it is necessary to review and evaluate the effectiveness of Whanau Ora for Māori, says Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy?
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy? Another significant shortfall in the Government’s books suggests the economic recovery may have already passed most New Zealanders by, Labour’ Finance spokesperson David Parker says....
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • NZ Police to spy on people in pubs? We like our fascism casual thanks
    Ummmm. What? Undercover cops to ‘spy’ on bar patronsAn ”outrageous” initiative will see undercover police officers ”spying on patrons”, Hospitality Association chief executive Bruce Robertson says. Southern district police last month began stationing plain-clothes officers in licensed premises to ensure...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Survey shows parents want smaller class sizes
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Survey shows parents want smaller class sizes A new survey finding most parents believe class sizes are too big shows Labour is right to reduce them, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says....
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Positive and Solution Based Politics
    It has been a fascinating month – at times depressing – to be watching New Zealand politics from afar. Over here in Pakistan where I am currently working we have seen the Government begin a military offensive in North Waziristan...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Let’s be honest about National’s education policy and ‘lolly scramble...
    Let’s be honest about National’s education policy shall we? It’s got nothing to do with student achievement, that’s the bait National are using, what National’s Charter School fetish and National Standard league table obsessions are all about is injecting a...
    The Daily Blog | 07-07
  • Crime targets no excuse for fewer prosecutions
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Crime targets no excuse for fewer prosecutions Police are being instructed to charge fewer people in order to meet National’s crime reduction targets, Labour says. “Front line police and others in the...
    The Daily Blog | 07-07
  • Marchers Keep Maui’s to the fore
    After successful marches around the country, Maui’s dolphin campaigners continue their pressure on the Government with a march to John Key’s electorate office in Kumeu on Sunday 13 July at 10am, leaving from the Kumeu Arts Centre at 10.30, 300...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • ESC announcement ‘shamefully late’, says safety campaigner
    The government announcement that Electronic Stability Control will become compulsory on new vehicles is effectively locking the stable door after the horse has bolted, says the car review website dogandlemon.com. Electronic Stability Control detects...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Susan Devoy urges New Zealanders to stand up for the refugee
    Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy urges New Zealanders to stand up for the refugee. “Let’s replace the barbed wire of refugee camps with our own No. 8 wire mentality. Let’s be there for some of our planet’s most vulnerable...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Internet Party Wades in to Fix Sick Waterways
    New Zealand’s waterways will be cleaned up and much higher standards set on water quality in a 10-year plan to be introduced by the Internet Party by 2016....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Time for Kiwis to start punching above weight in Humanity
    Acknowledgments and warm greetings to you all. I would especially like to welcome the relatively new representative from the UNHRC Thomas Albrecht..welcome to our part of the world, the Deputy CE for Immigration Nigel Bickle and the Ian Axford...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • SSC Releases Performance Improvement Framework (PIF) Reports
    The Performance Improvement Framework (PIF) reviews released by State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie today include the full reviews of the Department of Conservation (DOC) and the Treasury....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Will new farming leader jeopardise NZ’s GE-free advantage?
    The recent election of William Rolleston as president of Federated Farmers could mean a push towards genetic engineering (GE) in farming, warns the Soil & Health Association. Dr Rolleston has for many years been a proponent of GE, and some...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • President of PGA to attend Workshop for Arms Trade Treaty
    Labour’s Associate Disarmament Spokesperson and Parliamentians for Global Action (PGA) President Ross Robertson will be attending a Workshop next week in Siem Reap, Cambodia, to promote signature and ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT)....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Calls for Government Intervention Premature But Inevitable
    The Taxpayers’ Union is reacting to calls for a Crown Manager to be appointed to shepherd Auckland Council through its budget crisis, with disappointment. Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Seeking Sanctuary
    What would you do if you were forced to flee your home because of war or persecution?...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Entrenched child poverty no cause for celebration
    Child Poverty Action Group says high child poverty rates have become normalised and New Zealand's poorest children should expect a far greater level of ambition for their well-being....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Cyclists want answers from political parties
    Cyclists are calling for better protection, following the Coroner's inquest into the death of Jane Farrelly, held in Hamilton this week. Mrs Farrelly was killed after being struck by a truck near Taupo on March 16 last year....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Malaysian embassy employee
    Police are continuing to support Tania who has recently applied to the court to vary the automatic name suppression given to her based on the charges involved. Police did not oppose this course of action as we wanted to support...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Christchurch Chep workers strike for national pay parity
    Workers at the Chep pallet plant in Christchurch are going on strike on Thursday 10 July, demanding pay parity with Chep’s Wiri pallet plant in Auckland, according to FIRST Union, the union for workers in the transport and logistics sector....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Margaret Mahy boat unveiled on anniversary of ship bombing
    Greenpeace is naming a new boat after one of New Zealand’s best known children’s authors, Margaret Mahy, at a ceremony today on the 29th anniversary of the Rainbow Warrior bombing in Auckland harbour....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • ACC announces schools in sexual violence prevention pilot
    ACC has announced the nine secondary schools and facilitators who will pilot its new sexual and dating violence prevention programme....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • PISA results shed the spotlight on financial literacy levels
    PISA financial literacy results shed the spotlight on financial literacy levels for young New Zealanders...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • NZPI urges Government to consider planning principles
    The New Zealand Planning Institute (NZPI) is urging the Government to consider a suite of NZPI-developed guiding principles on freshwater quality issues when it implements its upcoming freshwater reforms....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Labour Party Policy a Mixed Bag
    The Insurance Council of New Zealand (ICNZ) would welcome any review of insurers’ response to the Canterbury earthquakes, rejects the Labour Party’s proposal for another regulator of the industry and supports its policy of transferring levies...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
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