web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

Ramshackle PR fiasco

Written By: - Date published: 6:02 pm, November 22nd, 2007 - 175 comments
Categories: activism, dpf, election funding - Tags: , ,

It’s a bit late, but a reader who was at yesterday’s anti-EFB march has mailed us through some pics from the rally. As David Farrar has noted, the protest march was joined by a small group of activists in John Key and Mr Burns masks chanting things like “What is it that we support? John Key’s election rort!”, “Elections, money, power, cash – Bring back Don Brash!” and my favourite, “2, 4, 6, 11 – We support the Exclusive Brethren!”. Their goal was to expose the real motivations of the bill’s opponents – that is, safeguarding the National Party’s dirty money – and to do so with humour. Judging by the media coverage they pulled it off.

efb-rally-wgtn-015.jpg

As expected, ten counterprotesters in the midst of a hundred or so angry Tories were always going to be abused and attacked. Here’s one anti-EFB protester who didn’t seem to have much of an appetite for free speech:

efb-rally-wgtn-032.jpg

And it might just be me, but doesn’t this look like a lot less than 200 people?

efb-rally-wgtn-045.jpg

175 comments on “Ramshackle PR fiasco”

  1. Robinsod 1

    re: photo two – Burt! I must apologise for calling you a drunken old bigot – you’re clearly younger than I thought.

  2. MikeE 2

    How ironic that Tane, mentions free speech – which is what the bill is what the protest was about.

    Especially considering that the counter protestors were given a microphone and allowed to state their case.

    I wonder if I’d ever be given the microphone at a Labour or Greens protest?

  3. Gruela 3

    Why are lefties always funnier than righties? Can anyone name even one funny conservative or libertarian? I’m talking intentionally funny, of course. Can’t think of any myself.

  4. milo 4

    Well, I was towards the back of the march, and I wasn’t even aware of the counter protest until it was mentioned in the speeches at Parliament. So it can’t have been that small. At the time, I texted my partner “Maybe 250?”. Probably some wishful thinking, but certainly well over 150.

    Funnily enough, I wasn’t marching in favour of anonymous donations, the exclusive brethren or anything like that. Nor would I characterise myself as a Tory.

    That, to me, has been been one of the puzzling things about Labour’s EFB campaign. The response to any criticism has effectively been “Well National are Worse!”. That shows a deep failure of imagination to me. Politics is about far more than National V Labour. It is about the institutions that form the basis of our society.

    And that is why I object to the EFB. Rather than strengthen our democratic institutions, it mainly seeks to strengthen one party at the expense of another.

  5. thomas 5

    I don’t recognise anyone that was at the Burma Rally.
    Which is odd because thats was about democracy too

  6. milo 6

    Interesting comment Thomas. Of course, that is an international rather than a domestic issue. But I must say, I haven’t marched since 1981. Mind you, I marched then for the same reason: a ruthless politician was twisting our political landscape for partisan gain.

  7. the sprout 7

    “a lot less than 200 people”

    well if it were the Herald reporting and they were opposed to the march’s intent it would be a handful. considering they support this one i expect they’d estimate about 2000.

  8. burt 8

    Their goal was to expose the real motivations of the bill’s opponents – that is, safeguarding the National Party’s dirty money

    Yes they did that well. Labour puppets shouting down the voice of the principled so that Labour can freely make legal what was illegal in 2005, retain access to what is required for them to have any chance of winning again in 2008. At any cost. Yes the puppets certainly had to try and run the parade, some might say they were representing Nanny state where their message was bigger than the democratic right of the people.

    Labour party members should be ashamed of these people. If I acted that way at a young Labour convention I would expect and deserve significant ridicule.

  9. thomas 9

    Well you can’t say I’m pro democracy as long as it only affects me
    The protest seems to me to be more about indignation over a more level playing field for the Nats coming into effect rather then democracy.
    I was at the Burmese Rally because monks were being taken away and shot. Interesting to note:
    A Green Mp spoke
    A Labour Minister spoke
    A trade unionist spoke
    Not a National Mp in sight
    Funny that

  10. r0b 10

    “But I must say, I haven’t marched since 1981.”

    Were you on an Anti Tour march milo? If so, what city? Those were formative times.

  11. burt 11

    thomas

    I would have liked to have seen the PM talking to the Dalai Lama in NZ as well. What is your point?

    The stupid thing is thomas, if Labour weren’t being so partisan about this then none of this would be happening. If the public had been broadly consulted then your claim that it’s National throwing their toys because it will cost them might carry some weight. IE: Non partisan people might agree with you. Anyone can convince the partisan the other side is just having it’s moment.

    Do you support the actions of young Labour people trying to ‘over shout’ citisens exercising their democratic right to peaceful protest?

  12. thomas 12

    Milo
    You said Well, I was towards the back of the march
    which as it turns out means that you were also near the front
    :-)

  13. burt 13

    thomas

    that’s funny. :-)

  14. burt 14

    Robinsod

    That’s not me. I accept the apology for calling me a drunken old bigot.

    It’s clear from this post that Tane supports using aggression and oppression to shout down the democratic rights on NZ citisens, do you you?

  15. milo 15

    rOb. Yep. Auckland. Including the last test at Eden Park.

  16. r0b 16

    “rOb. Yep. Auckland. Including the last test at Eden Park.”

    That was the main event. I remember the clowns. Christchruch myself, I got personally harrassed by the police as I was leacing the march. I’ve never got over it. Did you catch Ross Meurant’s recent comments?

  17. thomas 17

    No Burt I don’t agree with the young Labour supporters actions.
    But I don’t think democracy is under threat.

    I do not know of anybody who will be adversely affected by the bill. And judging by the hordes at the march not many other people think they will either
    When it comes down to an election, all the parties WILL have the opportunity to put forward their policies to the electorate
    If most of the electorate likes what they say , they will get in. If they don’t they won’t Pretty simple really

  18. burt 18

    Thomas

    When the Nazis came for the communists,
    I remained silent;
    I was not a communist.

    When they locked up the social democrats,
    I remained silent;
    I was not a social democrat.

    When they came for the trade unionists,
    I did not speak out;
    I was not a trade unionist.

    When they came for the Jews,
    I remained silent;
    I wasn’t a Jew.

    When they came for me,
    there was no one left to speak out.

    I know, I’m not an Exclusive Brethren either, stuff em if they are not allowed to exercise their democratic right to spend their own money expressing their views.

  19. burt 19

    “First they came.” is a poem attributed to Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892&1984) about the inactivity of German intellectuals following the Nazi rise to power and the purging of their chosen targets, group after group

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

  20. Billy 20

    Gruela: Bill Hicks.

  21. r0b 21

    “When the Nazis came for the communists,”

    So are you comparing the Labour led government to the Nazis Burt? Are you seriously meaning to suggest a similarity between 1930’s Germany and NZ today? Tell us Burt, is Helen Clark a Nazi?

  22. thomas 22

    Burt I hope you are not equating the current Gov with the Nazi’s Because that would be silly and does not help your argument in the least

    captcha : yesterday ferocious

  23. thomas 23

    Hi rob

  24. burt 24

    rOb, thomas

    Stop frothing, I’m pointing out to thomas that his post said there was nobody effected by it… well yes the target of the bill is effected.

    If you think it’s valid for laws to be passed to stop certain groups campaigning against the govt at election time then some comparisons could easily be made. The Fallong Gong are a target in another country, so is the Dalai Lama. Choose your oppressor and if you can find a poem about them let me know and I’ll post it here for you.

  25. r0b 25

    Hi thomas. Our Man Burt is on very thin ice here eh?

    Tell us Burt – is Helen Clark a Nazi?

  26. r0b 26

    Come on Burt – don’t try and weasel out of it.

    Simple question Burt. Is Helen Clark a Nazi?

  27. burt 27

    rOb

    I think Niki Hager made the first comparison of the bill being something you might expect from the Nazi party.

    I can see his reasoning, targeting certain groups that offend you is something the Nazi party certainly did – with the support of it’s party members.

    Perhaps you could answer your own question for me, have you been to any uplifting party gatherings where the great plan to eliminate the influence of the EB from NZ politics was discussed?

    If you have I might be forced to answer in the affirmative, until then I don’t think it’s gone that far just yet.

  28. r0b 28

    So is that a yes or a no Burt?

  29. Kent 29

    Thomas,

    I understood Nick Smith spoke. While not ignoring it, I don’t think National are jumping to be identified with this protest. It’s more the territory of the extreme right, like Stephen Franks. So long as that space is well occupied by vocal support then Key and English can successfully place themselves near the center.

    It’s weird. Not long ago I described DPF as being centrist, with right wing leanings. That’s certainly not the case now.

  30. Camryn 30

    r0b – Can we have the logical r0b back? He’s not calling Helen a Nazi. The answer you want is “no”. Stop calling Godwin and argue the point like you usually do.

  31. r0b 31

    Yo Camryn. Fair call! And indeed, the answer I want is “no”. People who equate this government with the Nazis trivialise history, and they really really piss me off (and Godwin too).

    As to the point at hand – does the DFB unfairly limit the speech of specific chosen groups, then the answer once again is no…

  32. the sprout 32

    burt
    those who took action “to eliminate the influence of the” Nazis, were they Nazis too, or is it that some things should rightly be eliminated?

  33. thomas 33

    I saw this at the Beans

    First they came for the BRT

  34. milo 34

    I think some of you are missing the point: The Labour Party has adopted a very divisive style, which reaches into all aspects of government. New Zealand is changing. Our political institutions are changing. And it’s becoming “us” and “them”.

    We are increasingly moving away from democracy towards the tyranny of the majority.

    Hope you like what you’re going to get. I don’t.

  35. thomas 35

    Metiria Turei Said today If the Greens thought for one moment that the bill undermined human rights, they would oppose it, just as they have opposed the Terrorism Suppression Act.

    She has a point. The Greens have the most integrity of all the parties in Parliament
    I know the right hate them (Just look at Ttdays general debate at Santa’s} They might be politically naive
    But they do have integrity

    Unlike Labour and National who’s behavior at the last election left a lot to be desired

  36. r0b 36

    Milo – “And it’s becoming “us” and “them”.”

    I put it to you that this effect is just as much a consequence of opposition behaviour as it is of government. It would be possible for an opposition to be constructive. The National opposition is not. Their only concept of “opposition” is to be relentlessly negative. Why else would they vote against tax cuts?

    “We are increasingly moving away from democracy towards the tyranny of the majority.”

    Well I don’t agree with that point at all (Thank You MMP!) – but I acknowledge that it displays a pretty sophisticated conception of democracy.

  37. Gruela 37

    I think all you guys are reaching if you really think the EFB is going to have ANY effect on the outcome of next years election.
    Points to consider:
    1. No-one except the unhealthily politically obsessed (u know who u are) really cares.
    2. When no-one actually EVER gets arrested for using a loud hailer at a political rally next year, people will start not to care.
    3. We will all be startled to discover that National gets mucho fundo from business-type people. Once the startlement settles (i.e 2.8 seconds later,) no-one will care.
    4. No-one cares.

    Billy: never heard of Bill Hicks but read his wikipedia entry and he didn’t sound that right wing. Obviously I’ll have to get hold of some of his stuff. But really I meant proper right-wing fundamentalists who can get across their beliefs in a funny way. I wonder if it’s even possible?

  38. r0b 38

    Gruela – “4. No-one cares”

    You may be the only sane one here. Goodnight all!

  39. Pascal's bookie 39

    milo
    Do you honestly think that the National party has had no input into the polarisation that you allude to?

    Think about the message of the iwi/kiwi series of billboards, and how big that billboard campaign was, and how long it lasted. The whole point of that campaign was division. Think about the whole message of the National parties campaign at the last election.

    The National party ran a very long co-ordinated campaign around the theme that National was the party of “mainstream” “ordinary NZers” etc ad nauseaum, these are phrases that have only one purpose: to define yourself in opposition to the freakish outsiderish “other”. They are too generic to do anything else, and obviously false given that the Nats knew they could get at best 50% of the vote.

    It is a strategy that Howard has used well in Australia and that served the Republicans well in the states for decades.

    The labour side is not perfect, and I’ve voted more often with the right than the left in my lifetime, but the attacks that labour makes do tend to be against specific groups, for specific reasons.
    The Nats went after the left last election by saying that they supported Maori rights,(the horror!!), gay rights (the bastards!!)and cared more about teachers and doctors than education and health. That’s your partisan, divisive rhetoric right there.

    It cost them my vote then, and probably will again next year. I no longer trust them.

    That they are now blaming the left for creating a toxic environment is just the icing on the cake.

  40. Kent 40

    At no time has this country been more divided than in 1981 over the Springbok Tour, and it took three long years after that to get rid of Muldoon. I would say that Clark has created divisiveness through her forceful management style, in a similar manner to Maggie Thatcher…

    Actually, when I think about it, I don’t really care.

    G’nite.

  41. Pascal's bookie 41

    Billy.
    Did you just say that Bill Hicks was right wing?

    Those Ronald Reagan hating right wing americans are really starting to piss me off, what with their pot smoking, long hair growing, anti-war, anti-corporate, baby jesus mocking so called humorists.

    Gruela, definitely check out Bill Hicks. Very funny, very coarse man, sometimes OTT but worth it for when he was on fire. Dirty fucking hippie though, who thought essentially that we should all just get along, because we’ve only got one planet, and when you die your dead forever. So not getting along and making sure others are getting along too is a terrible thing.

  42. Matthew Pilott 42

    Brashie wouldn’t have been labelled “Cancerous and Corrosive” without good cause – Clark wouldn’t just pull that one off the cuff.

    Remember that this was when the maller parties were going to walk out of Parliament mostly due to National’s behaviour. They have contibuted nothing to NZ politics in the past eight years.

    Where have the alternatives to Labour’s policies been? What does Natonal want? All we have to judge them on is the old ideas of slash and burn, bulk funding, privatisation. There’s nothing to indicate any new or positive thinking – as Thompson put it – “the forces of Old and Evil”. They have given the NZ public nothing, and that’s why they’re going to lose the next election.

    P.S I love teh tories wondering why there was a counter-protest – a if it was about ‘democracy’ they were there because they wanted National to retain this “level” playing field. If they were suckered by Farrar and Slater and Darnton into thinking it was really about megaphones, then they should wake up and smell teh greenbacks they were marching for.

    P.P.S yeah almost all the news coverage was on the counter protest, pity those Aucklanders couldn’t whip one up too…

  43. Gruela 43

    Personally, if it was up to me the EFB would ban outright all election advertising in the year leading up to an election. Let them live or die on their records, with no spin involved in the process at all.

    Now that would be a vote winner.

    Maybe someone should get a Citizen Initiated Referendum going to this effect, (or do we not do that anymore? I don’t know.)

  44. burt 44

    Gruela/rOb

    Gruela – “4. No-one cares”

    You may be the only sane one here. Goodnight all!

    When they came for the RB,
    I remained silent;
    I was not an EB.

    You guys/gals are gold.

  45. r0b 45

    Bookie – helluva post on the divisiveness issue. You to Matthew. Nice work.

    So how about it milo – are Labour to blame for the divisiveness in politics?

    And as for you Burt, you carry on trivialising the holocaust for what you imagine to be clever political point scoring. It looks good on you.

  46. The Double Standard 46

    Rob – “Haters and Wreckers” mean anything to you?

    The seabed and foreshore bill resulted in the Maori party. Pretty hard not to call that divisive.

  47. The Double Standard 47

    Ever hear of the foreshore and seabed bill? Hater and Wreckers?

    Be a stretch to label that episode as “not divisive”

  48. milo 48

    r0b: Labour and Brash are to blame. Brash has gone. Labour’s still there, and still doing it.

    I mean look at the disgusting display yesterday of Trevor Mallard using parliamentary privilege to personally attack a whistleblower. Still, at least he didn’t punch her.

  49. milo 49

    And is Michael Cullen still making homophobic jokes at the expense of opposition spokespeople? He was earlier this year. Have Labour giving up telling Nick Smith to take his pills? Are the oprressed women of the exclusive brethren still being vilified as chinless scarf wearers?

    And are commentators like me still being told that if we criticise Labour we must supporters of secret trusts, religious fanatics and corrosive politics? It seems “incorrect thoughts” require that the thinker be labelled with all these things – and thereby have their criticisms written off.

    And when I watch question time, I never see the National quetioners engaging in personal abuse. Yet the Labour ministers frequently respond in that way.

    Meanwhile, how is it that:
    – We never found out who tried to bribe the Maori party.
    – Labour got away with deliberately breaching the election spending cap, to which Matt McCarten and Chris Trotter have attributed Labour’s election victory.
    – The leader of the opposition was brought down (and good riddance in my opinion) by Watergate-style tactics.
    – The Exclusive Brethren are accussed of secretly rorting the election, when in fact they wrote to officials to try to ensure that what they did was legal!

    Raising these points will no doubt lead to a chorus of attacks on secret trusts (which Helen Clark originally wanted to keep), big money (although government big money seems okay), and the National party (of which I am not a member).

  50. the sprout 50

    “Brash has gone”

    well in body, but he was only ever an empty vessel puppeteered by others who still remain in the party, who hold the strings of another puppet.

  51. Matthew Pilott 51

    TDS champ, heard of Brashie’s Orewa speech?

    That was the kick-off of it all, wouldn’t you say?

  52. Lampie 52

    well if it were the Herald reporting and they were opposed to the march’s intent it would be a handful. considering they support this one i expect they’d estimate about 2000.

    did they actually report it? Think they missed it since it wasn’t a great support for there article

  53. r0b 53

    milo, anyone can make a partisan case based on small examples. (Ask David Benson-Pope if National ever engages in personal abuse eh?).

    I’m afraid that bookie and Matthew have really handed you your ass on the big issue. Orewa. Iwi / Kiwi. Game over.

  54. insider 54

    No Brash’s speech crystallised a range of concerns that had been building over various policies like closing the gaps (which was dropped like a hot potato) that while worthy in aim were rightly or wrongly seen to be favouring a group at the expense of another.

    Brash did not create those conditions but tapped inot them

  55. insider 55

    I should add that Winston Peters has been doing the same for years. Crediting Orewa with “kicking it off” shows a dangerously short view of history

  56. milo 56

    r0b: your argument seems to be that Labour can do what they like because National started it. Even if you subscribe to the premise, I don’t subscribe to the logic.

  57. r0b 57

    “r0b: your argument seems to be that Labour can do what they like because National started it.”

    Your summary is not quite accurate. My argument is that both sides are guilty of indiscretion and occasional foolish aggression in the rough and tumble that is politics. I wish it was different but it isn’t. But only one party made division and divisiveness the very essence of their last election campaign.

  58. milo 58

    Sprout: So when the Prime Minister said Don Brash was a cancerous and corrosive force in New Zealand politics, was she really referring to the National Party in general?

  59. Matthew Pilott 59

    Milo, that would depend on whether you agree it was the National party in general that was driving Brash’s “cancerous and Corrosive” attributes, or whether it was just his sunny personality shining through ;)

    Insider – I agree. Roughly every 3 years (it’s some cycle, not lunar or anything but i just can’t figure it out, any thoughts? :)) Winston and Rodney drum up a bit of immigrant, Maori, beneficiary and PC bashing. Fortunately it’s limited in scope and noted (and believed) by few.

    Milo, my original point stands, that the real divisiveness is National’s negative attitude to politics, as r0b noted. Simply attacking doesn’t cut it – this isn’t an explicit demand for policy btw, but a realisation that for the past years I haven’t heard a single example aboiut how National would make a percieved problem better. Not one.

  60. Gruela 60

    Sorry to interject on what seems like a really fun pissing contest for all involved, but I can’t help but think that all this talk about ‘divisive politics’ is just so much hyperbole, (fuelled somewhat by a media hungry for it, as well.)

    I’m too young to remember the ’81 tour, but if you ask me, from what I’ve seen of the video from that era, THAT was divisive politics.

    I AM old enough to remember the debate over legalising homosexuality in ’86, however, and really, THAT was divisive politics. 200 people marching against the EFB, or 400? Come on, how many 100,000’s marched against that particular piece of legislation, and how red in the face did they get about it? We’ve got nothing on those good old days of screaming at each other.

    Now fast-forward 20 years, and are there really any reasonable pundits ready to re-argue the toss over either of these issues? (Remember, no gays = no Gandalf.)

    Does either side in this debate really believe that in 20 years, people will look back to the mid 2000’s and say ‘My, what a divisive time that was.’

  61. r0b 61

    Hmmm – once again Gruela may be right. This is not 1981, or 1986, or 1951. Thank goodness.

  62. Gruela 62

    I just think it’s always worth applying some historical perspective to political issues. This is politics after all, and they’re supposed to be insulting each other and calling each other’s parentage into question.

    It’s when the House falls silent, and they all start speaking with one voice, that we should all start to worry.

    Insults are all good.

  63. ak 63

    Milo, you’re my favourite tipple but your attempt to paint the left as the faction of divisive politics leaves me gagging. Even the most cursory reading of history proves beyond a shadow of doubt that the opposite is the case.
    Through slavery, votes for women, the birth of unions, welfare, indigenous rights, gay rights, apartheid, etc etc you name it, any progressive initiative at all, the Right has by definition been the force of reaction – and division and fearmongering have been the stock in trade. A young Jim Bolger once told me that Apartheid might be a very good system – and that to end it would result in a bloodbath. As in every other case, Jim and all the other prophets of doom have moved on – like your stance on the “evil” EFB, minor footnotes as futile fleeting handbrakes on the history of progress.

    Race is the one area that drags on: as Insider notes, there’s still fertile ground for the fearmonger there – as Brash’s pupeteers knew and as Howard tried recently on the poor Aborigines. Good news is, it didnt work for wee Johnnie and it didn’t last long for Don – though I’m not too sure about that any more: the last Morgan poll wasn’t a rogue as some have suggested – it was taken during the “maori terrorist” fiasco and Winston’s boost from that one speech was entirely predictable. The surprise (and worry for the left) was National’s boost – indicating their continued attraction for the redneck vote despite Key’s pallid innoculuations in an effort to woo the Maori Party.
    Labour now has no choice. Sitting tight and attempting to placate redneckery has failed: National can and will detonate the “one law for all” nuclear device at any time it suits, and it will be primed and waiting already.
    It’s time for a reassertion of the progressive leadership that has delivered for more than a century: I’d suggest a bold re-focussing on “closing the gaps” (there has already been progress to celebrate as outlined in several recent reports) in partnership with the Maori and Green parties, and an offer to all other parties to participate in the formation of a non-partisan accord on the subject.
    Lead or cower; the ball in now in Labour’s court.

  64. milo 65

    Not the left, ak. The last two years of this government.

    But your post seems to say that the left is not divisive, because right wingers are moral scumbags. Heh, heh. Note the slight contradiction there … ? In fact, you seem to be arguing against me by saying my views are associated with slavery, racism, dickensian working conditions and oppression of women and gays.

    That really is pretty offensive. In fact it is extremely offensive. Care to withdraw that?

  65. Max Call 66

    Matthew Pilott
    Nov 23rd, 2007 at 11:19 am
    “that for the past years I haven’t heard a single example aboiut how National would make a percieved problem better. Not one.”

    funny you say that… I just got a pamphlet in my letterbox this week which is titled ‘Policy Summary – National Education Standards’ which has photos of Bob the Builder, John, and Katherine. Apparently their policy is to “introduce three key requirements for all primary and intermediate schools” which are 1)Clear National Standards 2)Effective Assessment and 3)Upfront Reporting.

    Basically most schools are already using the PATs or asTTle tests as cited in the pamphlet. What National wants to do (my interpretation) is to make this testing compulsary for all primary and intermediate age children and for these test results to be benchmarked against the minimum skills every child should have (at that age). Parents would be informed of their childs results, how these compare to the benchmarks and other New Zealand children.

    I really don’t see how this is much different from the status quo – expcept making the tests compulsary. My childen already take these tests, I already know my childrens results and understand how these compare(as do all parents/caregivers of their classmates).

    No where in this pamphlet does it address what National will do to ensure that every child who does not meet these benchmarks has followup. For example, if a child is below par with their spelling – what happens next? What if they have dyslexia? Will National fund the testing to see if they do indeed have dyslexia? Or any other testing to see why the spelling is below par? Will they fund any remedial lessons that may be required?

    So, in summary to me, their policy on National Education Standards is to make compulsary the tests on childrens reading, writing and maths (as most already do at school), compare their results to minimum standards for their age and report these results to parents. However, there is nothing in place for those children who do not meet these minimum benchmarks that is not already in place now.
    So, while it may pick up a few children who are not currently being tested and are also not achieving sufficiently at reading, writing or maths (though how a teacher who has a child in their class everyday cannot pick this up regardless – I am not sure!)it stops there! It almost seems like half a policy. I read the pamphlet and it felt like half of it was missing anyway.
    Sorry for above garble, but I was in a hurray to get this out before I need to go.

  66. Nick C 67

    Clearly those with the Mr Burns masks didnt appreciate the irony that they will have to yell out their name and address after their anti-national slogan when this bill passes.

  67. Gruela 68

    Compulsory testing of our school children? WTF?
    Sounds like National wants to turn New Zealand into some kind of nanny state.

  68. Nih 69

    That would be a very North Korean thing for KKKey to do.

    Hey, that’s actually quite a lot of fun. I see now why burt enjoys it so much.

  69. Max Call 70

    hehehe
    most are already tested anyway – PATs at my kids school.
    the interesting part is that Nationals rationale for the testing is for the parents to know
    Is my child reading, writing and doing maths at the expected level?
    Are they doing better than last year?
    Are they doing as well as others in the class?
    Which they should be able to get answered without the tests anyway.
    Also no questions like
    What resources is National going to put in place to address “one in five Kiwi children – a staggering 150,000 – are not succeeding at school”
    You can test the children everyday if you like but it will not help those who aren’t succeeding!

  70. thomas 71

    Nick C
    Clearly Nick you believe that every thing Farrar writes at the bog is true

  71. Gruela 72

    I think that’s really the bottom line for next year’s election, isn’t it. Tax Cuts vs. Investment in Infrastructure. (Education, Health etc.)

    Speaking as a Keynesian at heart, I’m all for tax cuts, but they have to be at the right time, and that time is at the bottom of economic cycles. When times are good, (ie now) all they do is push up interest rates and, in a small, importing economy like NZ, blow out our balance of payments.

    I think Labour’s best chance for success at the next election is to just keep harping on the one message: “National=Tax Cuts & Higher Mortgage Payments, Labour=Investment in Infrastructure.”

    They should completely ignore these side issues like the EFB and Anti-Smacking(Anti Child Abuse)

  72. thomas 73

    yes a lot of the left were pissed when HC announced Tax cuts Next Year.

    To win the next Election I think the Nats will have to attack the Greens . Get them under 5% and its all over. High Risk strategy though

    Labour needs to form strong links with The Moari Party and the Greens.
    Labour will not catch National in the polls
    But if the Nats can be kept to around 45%
    they won’t be the Government

    Biggest party but in opposition …I can hear the screams of outrage already

  73. milo 74

    Thank heavens we have progressive MPs like this to protect workers rights and maintain the moral superiority of the Left.

  74. The Double Standard 75

    Now now Milo – surely you know that TPF was a naive and unexperienced minister, and that the law of common sense says that he was only being helpful.

  75. thomas 76

    Break time at the TUANZ strategic meeting is it Dave.? I hope your not wearing that purple shirt I saw you in the other day twas the wrong colour for your complextion

  76. Gruela 77

    come on, milo, play the ball, not the man. Anyway, if National do get onto the Govt. benches next year, with an extra dozen MP’s or so, how sure are YOU that not one of them will turn out to be an embarrassing idiot like Taito.

    Just look at your man from Tauranga. (I forget his name.) National can be thankful he seems pretty uninterested in politics after all, and that he’s not sending out all sorts of unusual and thought-provoking press releases on their behalf. If he can get in as a National MP, chances are good you could get a Blue version of Taito next year.

  77. Matthew Pilott 78

    Max Call – that reminded me of john Key’s comments about giving police tasers – that wouldn’t be the Government’s decision to make anyway! But it makes it sound like he’s going to do something.

    Milo, TDS – congratulations on proving my point :) Couldn’t have put it better.

    Gruela, I like the cut of your jib. I wonder what the biggest issues will be in the coming election. Doubt it will be tax cuts, neither party wants to get in a pissing contest there.

    My wild guess will be National will continue negative campaigning about how bad this country is, while many will look around and say “really?” and wonder what National would actually do about it!

  78. milo 79

    Nothing to see here. Move on please. No hobbled enquiry. No continuing support after his lies were caught on camera. No hypocrisy. Just a beltway issue. Doesn’t resonate. He’s only guilty of being helpful and energetic. Unlike that member of the National party who is just too fat to work hard (another Cullenism).

    And did you know right wingers once supported slavery! And they eat their children!

    I’m off back out of the rabbit hole now. Thanks for the arguments.

    (Although that was never 5 minutes …)

  79. Gruela 80

    Matthew:
    You have a point. Up to now, National’s policy releases have been fairly disastrous. They must know they won’t get any more traction from the heartland with recycled policies from the 90’s.

    But I do think they will campaign on tax cuts because:

    a) The media seems to lap it up
    b) They’ve invested too much effort into painting themselves as the low -tax party. So, to follow…
    c) Up until now, there has been the smell of National being Labour-lite. If they don’t come out with some substantial tax cuts in their shadow budget, this smell will only get stronger.

    plus, they’ve been trying to paint Labour as incompetent managers of the State. This is a fundamental platform required if they want to convince the average voter that National can introduce significant tax cuts while still providing adequate funding for public services.

    Really, what else do they have as policy, apart from tax cuts?

  80. The Double Standard 81

    Gruela, if Clarkson is so bad, I wonder why he was awarded a Companion of the NZ Order of Merit by the current govt in 2003 for “services to Philanthropy, Industrial Properties and the Sports Stadium”

    If you can’t recognise the difference between being charged by police for fraud, and making a couple of non-PC statements then I guess you might make a good spin-doctor for Teh party.

  81. Gruela 82

    Double Standard:
    I didn’t know that about your man Clarkson. Obviously he’s not all bad, as are none of the MP’s currently in Parliament, as far as I can tell, (Yes, even Rodney has his fine moments.)

    My point is that he doesn’t make a very good MP. Sure, he may not be the worst, (mainly because he doesn’t seem to DO anything.) And my truly actual point was this: Sometimes an MP will get into parliament who really shouldn’t be there (as I think we can all agree, Taito is an excellent example,) and National are just as likely to succumb to this predicament in the future as Labour did.

    So, basically, it’s my opinion that you should focus more on what’s wrong with actual Labour policy, rather than singling out Taito as some sort of symptom of the baseness of the current Government.

    He’s really irrelevant to what a decent political discussion should focus on, I think.

    Anyway, I’m off to work. Sunny Friday’s always bring out the dickheads, so I suspect I’m in for a busy night.

    Peace be upon you all, fullas. I love this stuff.

  82. r0b 83

    “Anyway, I’m off to work. Sunny Friday’s always bring out the dickheads, so I suspect I’m in for a busy night.”

    Law enforcement? Medical?

    “Peace be upon you all, fullas. I love this stuff.”

    Don’t get institutionalised (I fear it’s happening to me) – we need your fresh perspective.

  83. The Double Standard 84

    ‘I think Labour’s best chance for success at the next election is to just keep harping on the one message: “National=Tax Cuts & Higher Mortgage Payments, Labour=Investment in Infrastructure.”‘

    But aren’t Labour offering tax cuts as well?

    And how much have interest rates gone up under Labour?

    The line you are proposing doesn’t seem to have worked well for the Libs in Oz (Election tomorrow of course)

    Also, which of Labour’s infrastructure spending do you think National won’t support?

  84. r0b 85

    “But aren’t Labour offering tax cuts as well?”

    Yup. National will be forced to offer significantly bigger cuts, hence the perfectly valid concerns about the consequences of those cuts.

    “Also, which of Labour’s infrastructure spending do you think National won’t support?”

    Very difficult to say, because National don’t much like being pinned down on anything resembling policy. It frightens the horses.

  85. the sprout 86

    “which of Labour’s infrastructure spending do you think National won’t support”

    um, anything that won’t be profitable to National’s benefactors

  86. Nih 87

    Conservatives often all agree on on thing: they hate or disapprove or otherwise express that the glass is half empty and possibly polluted with blacks and gays. Dreadful world, isn’t it.

    When you start producing policy, you have to get all of these reserved people to agree. And that’s the thing, they can only agree that they do all have reservations. When you bring out the details you end up with Hinamoo vs dork4justice. They’re both extremely conservative and disagree with each other completely. Worse, we’ve taught them to abuse whatever they fear or disagree with, so at the moment they’re at each other’s throats over minor matters.

    Imagine what it’ll be like when policy comes out. Farrar will lose his flock.

  87. thomas 88

    Basically you are pitching to 3 or4 % in the middle
    Labour and the greens will get 45% whatever happens
    What do those 3 to 4% want ?
    Maybe a bit of dosh in their pockets a week before polling. >
    Maybe they will be swayed when National plays its race card ?
    Maybe the women will like Key >
    Or maybe Helen will destroy key in the debates ?

    Its going to be close
    But at least the nats can blame the EFB when they lose

  88. ak 89

    thomas:
    Dosh don’t matter so much – polls say so and it balances anyway
    Women don’t like National – polls ditto
    Helen will definitely destroy Key in the debates

    Its Race. Race, Race, Race.

    And remembering Winnie’s asian-bash and Orewa One, its more like 6 – 10%. Solution in earlier comment.

  89. Nih 90

    My partner mentioned that Winston has started to make statements that are more comfortable for the larger demographics in New Zealand now that an election is coming up. I don’t know if he’ll pull out his anti-immigration crap again or just go be anti about something else, such as the bunch arrested in Tuhoe.

    It just goes to show he knows what everyone wants, he just so rarely gives a fuck. I hope he is widely judged on his prior behaviour rather than his sparkling new election image.

  90. the sprout 91

    as long as National re-employ the Liberals’ strategists Crosby Textor, it’ll be race for sure.

    http://www.pjreview.info/issues/docs/13_1/PJR13_1_7_hagerpp197-204.pdf

  91. thomas 92

    Just returned from Maryan Street’s Nelson Campaign Launch
    Lots of people there all very positive
    She was pretty impresive I think she is going to give Nick Smuth a run for his money.

  92. burt 93

    Max Cell

    You can test the children everyday if you like but it will not help those who aren’t succeeding!

    It will help them, it will ensure it’s brought to the attention of anybody who cares!

    The issue is – Is there anybody who cares about “one in five Kiwi children – a staggering 150,000 – are not succeeding at school”?

    I suspect there are quite a few of that 150,000 who can’t say “yes” to that and testing would help identify that as well.

    Status quo is clearly not working very well if 1 in 5 is failing, yet status quo is defended quite well by the lefties – go figure.

  93. Nih 94

    One in five sounds more like standard intelligence deviation. Maybe one in ten would be more reasonable. My question would be is the standard for passing being set on how well an average child performs.

    I’m all for identifying struggling kids and helping them though, it’s just that as everyone else said, they’re already doing what Key is promising to make mandatory. I think we need to look at other areas of primary and intermediate schooling for ways to improve them.

  94. burt 95

    Cruela

    I think that’s really the bottom line for next year’s election, isn’t it. Tax Cuts vs. Investment in Infrastructure. (Education, Health etc.)

    This is the state of education, 1 in 5 failing and a shambles of an organisation. Teacher shortage threatens schools. Primary schools are forecast to be short 800-1,000 teachers next year as well.

    Health is a debacle, tens of thousands slashed off waiting lists last year, elective surgery canceled regularly due to bed and/or staff shoratges.

    People voted to pay more tax in 1999 to fix health and education, again in 2002 and then again in 2005. Who in their right mind would trust Labour in 2008 to make any positive improvements after 9 years of making a pudding out of both Health and Education. Only people with no ability to comprehend the difference between Labour spin and reality would give them a forth term to fuck it up more.

  95. Nih 96

    Also, have you considered that the point of the tests is NOT to pass everyone, but help identify who does need help. If the latter, it seems reasonable that these children will always be the ones singled out by the results for more help. It’s not a negative thing, it’s what I would expect.

    If all the kids are passing, the curriculum isn’t challenging enough for the majority of the class or the testing is failing to identify the inevitable performance drift.

    I know it’s a bit complicated, but I won’t stand by and let education issues go to rort, even on a tiny scale.

  96. burt 97

    Nih

    The point of testing is to set a standard and to evaluate individual students. Evaluating individual students is a bit of a PC quagmire in our current school system although I do think the the strategy of using more tools than ‘tests’ to evaluate students is extremely valid.

    I think it’s a bit of a pendulum type thing where testing was all we had and we are yet to find our balance between formal tests and other internal assessment methods. Testing and evaluating against an ‘average’ suddenly became bad and we threw the baby out with the bath water by removing it almost completely rather than having it as a key part of a bigger strategy for evaluation.

    I’m quiote passionate about good education, as your comments would imply you are, and I agree it’s far to important to let if get stuffed up my political popularism.

  97. Nih 98

    The point of testing is to set a standard and to evaluate individual students.

    Then I look forward to a future of AI-designed individual tuition for every student that caters to their needs, their learning methods and their goals. The very best education setting is a tutor for every kid coupled with a safe, rich social environment to learn in.

    Until that magical day we don’t have the manpower and never will. That’s why existing primary testing is designed to show teachers where most of their time should be going. Nobody left behind and your class remains challenged.

    The face of education and knowledge is changing in any case. It’s going to be more about keeping kids occupied and using their brains while they grow for 13 years. Why bother learning much of anything specialised when you can find it organised and well presented on the internet? We should begin to change the focus to teaching a proactive can-do attitude and the ability to learn and retain information, because the age of always-available information is virtually upon us.

    Let’s face it, the existing system was OK by last century’s standards but the same system is failing us now. The whole thing has to change.

  98. ahod 99

    “2, 4, 6, 11 – We Support the Exclusive Brethren!”
    – Kids should be chanting this as a pre-exam prep! Pump the lungs and mind with a bit of political fervour! Marvellous!

  99. r0b 100

    This is the state of education, 1 in 5 failing and a shambles of an organisation. Teacher shortage threatens schools. Primary schools are forecast to be short 800-1,000 teachers next year as well.

    Health is a debacle, tens of thousands slashed off waiting lists last year, elective surgery canceled regularly due to bed and/or staff shoratges.

    Burt, you really are a “glass half empty” kinda guy aren’t you. I bet you’re loadsa fun at parties.

    Health and Education in NZ are not perfect, and of course they can never be perfect. Anyone can selectively focus on the right weaknesses and paint a picture of “shambles” and “debacle”. Thing is, it isn’t true. Shall we look to some independent statistics?

    http://www.stats.govt.nz/products-and-services/nz-in-the-oecd/education.htm

    Hmm, let’s see. NZ 12 / 30 in the OECD for secondary and tertiary qualifications, 9 / 30 for participation in early childhood. NZ children rank fifth in reading, ninth in mathematics, seventh in science. Is it perfect? No. Should we aim to do better? Yes. Education “shambles”? Hardly.

    For Health stats see same link as above but /health.htm

    Infant mortality – better than OECD average but not good enough. Life expectancy, above OECD average but could do better. Expenditure on health is average. From other sources the Commonwealth Fund 2004 international health survey rates NZ equal with Australia, both ahead of Canada and the US, both behind Germany and the UK. Is it perfect? No. Should we aim to do better? Yes. Health “debacle”? Hardly.

    So Burt, carry on with your partisan rantings. But do so knowing that the facts tell a different story.

  100. ak 101

    burt: “The point of testing is to set a standard and to evaluate individual students.”

    hmmm…..how would you evaluate the author of this sentence burt?
    “I’m quiote passionate about good education……it’s far to important to let if get stuffed up my political popularism.”

    Hey! 99 comments – congrats Standardistas!

  101. Tane 103

    Thanks ak – Standardistas, I like it. We did get 123 comments once though: http://www.thestandard.org.nz/?p=481

  102. Gruela 104

    Excellent comment, rOb. I was thinking along the same lines when I read burt’s contribution. However, I think you missed one thing. You’ve got the international comparisons covered, but what about the historical ones? Allow me to add this:
    Life expectancy in New Zealand 2001:
    Male: 74.3 years
    Female: 79.6 years
    Life expectancy 2006:
    Male: 78.2 years
    Female: 82.2 years
    according to the OECD.

    This is a terrific leap, and I didn’t believe it at first, but I checked at statistics NZ and it seems genuine. I think even burt would have to agree that if you’re interested in the health of our health system (sorry) then life expectancy would be one of the first statistics you’d check out. Hardly seem indicative of a ‘debacle’, does it?
    Isn’t this fun, burt? burt? Where are you burt?

    Probably gone to bed. More sense than I’ve got.

  103. Max Call 105

    Hi Burt,
    my point was not really the testing (as its already being done anyway!) – more that Nationals policy only contained the ‘testing’. There was no mention of the followup and resourcing of the followup required after this testing.
    Whats the point of testing if nothing happens next?
    They quote in their pamphlet that “one in five Kiwi children – a staggering 150,000 – are not succeeding at school”
    For a start – how would they know this if the children aren’t already being tested?
    And second, their policy goes no further than identifying these individuals. It doesn’t set out what they propose should be done with these students once identified. That is what I meant by it being only half a policy. (hahaha – could even say ‘hollow policy’)

  104. Max Call 106

    Unfortunately our great averages and comparisons to other OECD countries hides our ‘long tail’ of students not achieving.
    I contend that teachers already know who these students are – there is just not the resources in place to sufficiently address these students needs.
    I believe I have read/seen many times studies that show the prison population has much higher incidences of dyslexia and illiteracy than the general population. As it stands, there is currently no resourcing in place to address dyslexia in our schools. The MOE does not recognise dyslexia as a learning difficulty for students that requires any resourcing.
    Surely it would make sense both economically and socially to fund both the identifying of dyslexic students and the help they require?

  105. r0b 107

    “Excellent comment, rOb.”

    Cheers Gruela. I hope you had an OK evening with the Friday night hoons.

    “You’ve got the international comparisons covered, but what about the historical ones? Allow me to add this:”

    Great stuff – many thanks for that. (I’ll add it to my “library”.) I too am amazed by the increase!

    Speaking more generally of collecting useful info, we often repeat these arguments about health, education, the economy and so on. I wonder if The Standard could provide some kind of mechanism for building a FAQ file. We could all contribute, build up good sound well researched answers to the usual questions and trolls. It would be kinda useful.

  106. r0b 108

    “Surely it would make sense both economically and socially to fund both the identifying of dyslexic students and the help they require?”

    For sure. There are various ways you could try to draw attention to this issue. One of them cuts out a lot of “the usual channels” and speaks very directly to the government, and that is (if you are a member of the Labour party) to propose it to the Labour policy committee, or propose it as a remit for Conference. Labour members still actively debate and promote policy at their annual conference (most other parties have given this up).

  107. thomas 109

    Is anybody in Ch Ch going to the
    March ? today

  108. the sprout 110

    looks like we’re about to see a concerted effort to not repeat DPF’s cock-up.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10478099

  109. Gruela 111

    Wow!! John Key’s coming to the provinces! Truly that will bolster National’s poll rating, because there’s nothing us yokels like to do more over the summer months than stand around and listen to a politician. (Although it might get the editors of a few yokel newspapers mildly excited.)

    Also interesting, the article goes on to say this “will have the added function of getting him acquainted with the pressures he will face in an election campaign.”

    I don’t understand this. Is Helen Clark going to be touring with him, and will they be having televised debates during which Johno will be required to explain National policy?

    I don’t think John Key has yet been put under real pressure, has he?

  110. thomas 112

    Key seeks to halt Labour momentum

    Then he had better not release any policy then

  111. the sprout 113

    a classic pretend-balanced article from the Herald that one, over-stating the successes and citing strawman failures while avoioding the worst ones.
    indeed keeping his mouth shut will be the best strategy, which he’ll be following again shortly what with Crosby Textor soon to become free for business again.
    obviously it won’t be anything like real campaigning, but JK’s puppeteers will understand the importance of making him feel like it’s the real thing… “oh you’rte doing great Johno, keep it up mate, they’re loving you, you’re beautiful, a master at this, etc”.

  112. thomas 114

    what with Crosby Textor soon to become free for business again.
    Is Crosby ill then
    I guess it soon to be Stills & Nash then

  113. Gruela 115

    You have to admit, though, that as uninspiring as the John Key article is, it pales before the magnificent glow that is Fran O’Sullivan on John Howard in the same paper.

    I believe this may be the most glaring display of the author’s wishful thinking overtaking any degree of nuance or subtlety of opinion, any sense of balance or perspective, that I have read in any newspaper column in a long time. I laughed until I wet myself. Twice.

  114. Gruela 116

    And while I’m on the subject, what’s with the idea that John Howard has been ‘the best prime minister New Zealand never had.’

    This is just silly. I can think of three better one’s off the top of my head:
    1) Voltaire
    2) Nelson Mandela
    3) Norman Kirk (because he never had a fair chance)

    Anyway, I think you guys should put up a post on this subject, and make it so that we all can vote on who we think has been ‘ the best prime minister New Zealand never had.’ Then after a couple days you could send the results to the Herald, maybe ask if Fran O’Sullivan would want to comment on it.

    It’s just an idea.

  115. Nih 117

    This is just silly. I can think of three better one’s off the top of my head:
    1) Voltaire
    2) Nelson Mandela
    3) Norman Kirk (because he never had a fair chance)

    Obviously you’ve never heard of Yoda.

  116. thomas 118

    Well i think Helen Clarke is the best Pm that Australia never had

    and while I think of it John Clark
    oh and Allan Clark who used to play for Leeds Utd in the seventies

  117. burt 119

    ak

    I guess I made a typo and therefore my entire comment is something to be discarded. Wow, how many years did you spend at university to be so gifted that you could spot a typo and just know that means that the entire message is a waste of space and the next thing to do is shoot the messenger. You’re a first class chump ak!

    rOb

    Quoting ORCD statistics that show we are in the bottom half and saying we are doing well is about what I would expect from a lefty. Private schools kick ass over state schools and the only answer the left seem to have is – ‘state schools just don’t have the resources’.

    How do you people so readily accept mediocrity in health and education simply because we have had a Labour govt for 8 years? The public of NZ voted to pay extra tax in 1999 to fix health and education and the stats are going backward – still you can’t see it because … well I guess because darling Labour are in charge and to suggest they could do better would make you just like them nasty National party people.

    Give up and accept anything – it’s much easier and you can keep pretending that dear leader has it all under control.

  118. thomas 120

    You’re a first class chump ak!
    Ak is the brightest most erudite
    poster in the New Zealand Blogosphere maybe the world
    So leave him alone you bully

    Burt On which stats do you base the comment the public of NZ voted to pay extra tax in 1999 to fix health and education and the stats are going backward

  119. r0b 121

    “Quoting ORCD statistics that show we are in the bottom half and saying we are doing well is about what I would expect from a lefty.”

    Burt, not being able to tell the difference between the bottom half and the top half is, sadly, about what I would expect from you.

  120. thomas 122

    Where are those Stats Burt ?

  121. ak 123

    Chump burt? Chump?
    I’m disappointed and a little hurt burt, surely you can muster up something far more lickspittlicious than a paltry “chump” – have all those hours at kiwibog taught you nothing? C’mon burt, you’re letting the side down.. anyway, I certainly wouldn’t shoot you and don’t regard your comments as a “waste of space” – au contraire mon ami (french burt, look it up), I find them highly entertaining and a fascinating study of dogged determination against all odds.

    rOb and the others consistently and repeatedly decipher and debunk your obtuse meanderings (excellent work by the way rOb), yet you return immediately without a hair out of place to fight another day with the same tedious tory cant. So respected international studies show our health system to be near the best in the world? – no worries to you burt, simply repeat the lies, drop in a “dear leader” or two, then scamper on to urinate on the next post.

    We could have used you at the Somme burt: unfortunately, like all cannon-fodder your tory heroes won’t thank or want you when they lose next year. Come to the light burt: drop the pitiful propaganda and keep improving the clarity and you’ll find more admirers for your grit on this side of the barricades.

  122. Pascal's bookie 124

    On the best PM we’ve never had, my vote would be for John Rawls, though I’d be dancing jigs and giving out free home made cider to all and sundry if we had any of Gruela’s suggestions as well.

    As for Fran O’S, who cares what she thinks?

    The major issue I have with MSM punditry, and it is not a problem limited to nz, is that they are journo’s, trained in the “art” of modern crappy journalist style. There was a time that the qualification for being a journo was that you know something about a subject and be able to string a paragraph together. The latter was subordinate to the former. The had sub editors that could deal with the prose stylings. these days kids go to polytech or wherever to learn ‘journalism’ which consists of a bit of writing guidence and a whole bunch of usesless stuff that they confuse with ethics, but which is fact a license to peddle crap for PR wallahs and the Bon McCroskie’s of the world.

    The baby is crying so I might expand on this later, but the take away is that journo’s who don’t understand a subject will always end up falling back on ‘he said, she said’, think they’ve achieved something and end up considering that their own opinions have some value. And you end up with Frau Fran.

  123. Pascal's bookie 125

    Sorry about the typo’s. I blame the baby (always), who is now happy, but still demanding attention.

  124. Historian 126

    Fran’s other candidates for best Prime Minister NZ never had:

    Bill English (2002)
    Don Brash (2005)
    John Key (2008)
    Bill English (2011)
    John Key (2014)

  125. burt 127

    rOb

    I can tell the difference between the top and the bottom, that was a typing error, I was meaning that simply pointing to OECD stats showing we are in the top half and claiming it’s OK is what I would expect from a Labour supporter.

    It’s good that you remind us about OECD ratings, remember the claim that Labour would take us up in the ratings while we have actually gone backwards. It’s this sliding that is unacceptable against a promise to fix health and education.

    Private schools significantly out perform state schools, you might say that private schools have more money than state schools but that’s simply a cop out. There is a culture of success that money can’t buy, but setting the expectations at mediocre can easily destroy it. If you claim that private schools are established for profit, then if the state was running them it could deliver the same quality for a lot less money as there would not need to be a profit. So either way there is something systemically wrong with the education system, the teacher shortages I pointed to earlier back this up.

    ak

    You must try posting about the topic of the thread rather than simply denigrating other contributors. Who knows – you might actually have something to offer. Go on try it, what do you think we can do about the horrific teacher shortages next year ?

    (oh, here is a few typos for you to denigrete just encase you sumply can’t stay on the topic long enuf to construct a position on something without leaping into attack and denigrate mode. )

  126. The Double Standard 128

    Shouldn’t “ramshackle PR fiasco” be about the treatment of the communications staff at the environment ministry? Seems like Teh Party can’t keep its hands out the public service, and doesn’t hesitate to send out its violent attack dog when things go wrong.

  127. thomas 129

    David as a National stalwart, you of all people
    shouldn’t be commenting on a ramshackle PR fiasco”
    John Key hasn’t opened his mouth since
    he declared the war is over, said he was going to make doctors visits more expensive, sell state assets and privatise schools

  128. Your paranoia is getting alarming Thomas. You should consider medical intervention before it is too late.

    The last person from here to accuse me of posting under an alias (something I have never done here) turned out to be forging identities himself.

  129. Nih 131

    You of course have the benefit of not being banned from expressing yourself on other blogs despite much poorer behaviour.

  130. thomas 132

    I am glad about your concern David
    But I’m not paranoiac in the slightest.
    I “know” you are DPF. simple

    Anyway moving on

    And back to the subject of this post
    Do you know how th ChCh march went David ?

  131. r0b 133

    Burt – “I can tell the difference between the top and the bottom, that was a typing error,”

    That’s a helluva typo Burt. But let’s give you the benefit of the doubt (because the alternative is too depressing to contemplate).

    “I was meaning that simply pointing to OECD stats showing we are in the top half and claiming it’s OK is what I would expect from a Labour supporter.”

    Really Burt? Being in the top half of the list of the world’s most affluent countries is not OK? I think that it’s better than OK Burt, I think it’s pretty damn good, though of course we should aim to do better. I think that instead of running them down, we should thank the hard working people who work in our world class health system Burt, don’t you?

    It’s good that you remind us about OECD ratings, remember the claim that Labour would take us up in the ratings while we have actually gone backwards. It’s this sliding that is unacceptable against a promise to fix health and education.

    I answer you with facts. Your turn Burt. Where is your evidence for this claim? Actual numbers please Burt, quoting Kiwibog won’t do. Time to put up Burt. Let’s see whatcha got here.

  132. thomas 134

    I asked him that as well
    Maybe he is doing research rOb

  133. r0b 135

    “excellent work by the way rOb” Cheers ak, and likewise. Nice to make your acquaintance.

    bookie – good luck with the young one. It’s such a special time! Sleep deprivation notwithstanding of course…

  134. r0b 136

    “Maybe he is doing research rOb”

    Maybe he is. The suspense is making me all tingly!

  135. r0b 137

    While we’re waiting for Burt, fellow Standardistas, I hope you’re keeping an eye on the unfolding drama in Oz…

    http://www.abc.net.au/elections/federal/2007/

  136. burt 138

    While I dig around a bit more, and to save me suffering the ‘2 link moderation’, here is a starter.

    The PM agrees here that she would like to see us ‘back in the top half’ of the OECD ratings’.

    Unless the PM is incredibly stupid she has acknowledged we were once there, are not there now and would like to go back.

    The search continues.

  137. thomas 140

    Lab looks like they are hosing in
    yesssssssssssssssssss

  138. r0b 141

    “The PM agrees here that she would like to see us ‘back in the top half’ of the OECD ratings’.”

    The PM was referring to much publicised economic results. We are discussing health and education (where we are in the top half). Sorry Burt, no joy there.

    “The search continues.”

    Well good on you for trying I guess. But really Burt, if you go round shooting your mouth off like that, shouldn’t you have the facts close at hand? If it is so bad, shouldn’t the facts be at least easy to find?

    Or did you just make it up Burt?

  139. r0b 143

    Burt – you’ll find a few variants of this story. You can post them all, but you’re just making yourself look silly. They are about economic indicators Burt, and we’re discussing health and education.

    Try and find something relevant to the actual topic of debate Burt.

  140. burt 144

    rOb

    The link to the Aussie election results is great. Looks like Labor are going to stomp home. Good on them, their ‘time for a change’ ads were excellent.

  141. burt 145

    rOb

    We’re actually discussing young Labour people denying people they disagree with their democratic right to peaceful protest by shouting them down with megaphones. Under the heading of “Democracy under threat” described as a “Ramshackle PR fiasco”

    Some distractors dragged the topic off thread to try and sell the “Labour good” “National bad” line so anything is fair game really.

    Sure Education and Health might be in the top half, but ‘overall’ the country still slips backward so how long can we sustain it?

    The Auckland University link for example.

    New Zealand is under performing relative to other comparable countries and is slipping down a number of OECD ranking tables with per capita GDP falling from third to twenty second. A recent study argues that in these terms New Zealand is now significantly less wealthy than Australia, Singapore and Ireland.

    This slippage, combined with continuing corporate flight from New Zealand, and the loss of talented and experienced people overseas, has resulted in extensive discussion about how best to recover New Zealand’s forward momentum and to regain the country’s place in the top half of OECD country rankings. The challenge is considerable. It will require a rate of growth of GDP of around 5% per annum or the emergence of new businesses three times the size of the current diary industry to achieve this goal by 2011.

  142. r0b 146

    Righteo then Burt. Goodnight.

  143. Gruela 147

    Dear burt,

    I would really like to take the discussion of private schools being better than state schools further, if you’re of a mind. I wonder if you have any ideas on what the outcome would be if there were no state schools?

    What would your ideal system be under a totally private regime? Would it be up to the individual parents to totally fund their own children’s educations or would you prefer a voucher system funded through taxation with which parents could purchase their children’s education from ‘education companies’, who perhaps might run discreet and competing networks of schools and tertiary institutions throughout the country?

    Or is their some other way you’d prefer the NZ education system to be redifined? I’m very interested in reading your ideas.

  144. The Double Standard 148

    Thomas “I “know” you are DPF.”

    Well, duh, he posts as himself.

    Still, I guess both DPF and I get a laugh out of your pathetic claims. All you do is prove over and over again that your are both stupid and a liar. Actually I’m surprised that you have the intelligence to operate a computer.

  145. burt 149

    Cruela

    I would really like to take the discussion of private schools being better than state schools further, if you’re of a mind. I wonder if you have any ideas on what the outcome would be if there were no state schools?

    Before we can debate it in a reasonable manner you need to be reasonable. Are you implying I want a situation where there are no state schools or is that what you want?

    State funding and state provision are two separate concepts. Sometimes used as one in the same but more often not. Health and Education are examples where the state has a myopic ideology and would rather have people falling off waiting lists than state funding used to get positive outcomes with private providers.

    Schooling is much the same. Currently private schools are experiencing significant demand on their limited resources. That primarily being classrooms and space for more classrooms. Teacher retention seems to be much less of an issue in private schools, funny that.

    The argument of the state being the funder but not necessarily the provider is an interesting one, and if you want a situation where there are no state run schools then this might be a good starting point for debate.

  146. Nih 150

    Cruela[...] Before we can debate it in a reasonable manner you need to be reasonable.

    Well Burtram, given that you get Gruela’s name wrong every single time you address her, I do wonder at the way in which you wield reasonable manners yourself. Just pointing it out in case you’re genuinely mistake. For a change. Cough.

  147. burt 151

    Nih

    So I take it you have got nothing to say about state funding and state provision ?

  148. burt 152

    Out of interest, thomas is the only one of the Labour apologists here to say that he thinks that the young Labour people were out of order trying to shout down a democratic protest with megaphones.

    Can I assume that all the “reasonable” people here are quite comfortable with the way young Labour conducted themselves and would be quite happy if people behaved that way to disrupt a young Labour convention, or a Greenpeace march?

    Looking at Tane’s favourite “”2, 4, 6, 11 – We support the Exclusive Brethren!” I do wonder about you guys sometimes.

  149. Nih 153

    So I take it you have got nothing to say about state funding and state provision ?

    What has that got to do with you making a “haw haw nigger” joke at someone elses expense? Not a very good one at that.

    So I take it you knew what you were writing then.

  150. Nih 154

    By the way, Colonel Burt here is declaring victory in the face of everyone ignoring his trolling. Is someone going to waste time debating with him or can we let him ‘win’? It would be very gracious of us to let the good old boys from the south have one.

  151. burt 155

    Nih

    For one so motivated to nit-pick the spelling of peoples aliases you could at least use a lower case “b” for mine.

  152. Nih 156

    Yeah, because improperly capitalising your internet alias is like making nigger jokes.

    Suck it up burt.

  153. burt 157

    Nih

    You will need to explain the nigger joke Nih, I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s missed your point. I do note however you’re still not engaging in anything other than swiping at me.

  154. Nih 158

    You mean you didn’t get it from my first post? Don’t be slow burt.

    Just kidding. We know you know that you’re being a racist douche. Who knows if you’re like this off the internet, but I would bet money that you’re a douche fulltime.

    Keep blabbing you racist windbag.

  155. burt 159

    Nih

    You seem to have gone off the deep end for no valid reason, perhaps you could explain to me why I’m suddenly a racist. Race was the last thing in my thoughts (as it usually is) during all of the comments I have made on this thread.

    Perhaps you are stuck for insults, I don’t know where you are coming from but calling me racist for any of my comments above is just bizarre. Especially since you continue without any justification of where I even mentioned race at all!

  156. Nih 160

    Jesus. You’re like a guy in blackface mock-shrugging while your audience goes hysterical.

  157. burt 161

    Nih

    If you’re not proud of the way young Labour people acted but can’t bring yourself to speak out against them then there is no need to denigrate me.

    You just rant on without even providing a hint of evidence to back up your assertion I’m being racist. Robinsod normally tells me to take my Ritalin, pehaps he should be talking to you!

  158. Nih 162

    Oh, shit? Is that what this is about? How insensitive of me. I’m so sorry. I had no idea you were missing Robinsod you big lug.

    Tell you what, if I pat your hand and get you a little glass of water, will you take your ritalin?

    Do you sleep after that, or do we have to tell you a fucking story? Sorry, I mean normal story. Don’t tell your parents you heard me say that around you, ok? Otherwise I’ll tell them you were bad.

  159. burt 163

    Nih

    Still no substance, just person attacks. You started off so well saying sorry for calling me a racist with no justification then you slipped back into ‘why play the ball when you can play the man’.

    Perhaps you could leave the discussion that Gruela asked for to people who want to do more than trade insults.

  160. Nih 164

    I didn’t realise mock ignorance was considered such a hearty defence among the ignorant. The truth is you knew exactly what you were doing and kept doing it in the face of someone asking you to stop. Your forumla goes:

    Insult
    Baseless stance, possibly confused and without sense
    Insult
    Generally absurd statement regarding current events, the future or other people’s comments

    Unfortuntately you’re not very creative so you don’t even make a good read in terms of trolling. I bet I could do a better job of right-wing-troll than you. At least I’d get a theme and a running joke going. Do you want me to create a new far-right login to troll with? I could walk you through the basics of winning arguments too. No? Not keen?

    I suppose at least you’re calling her Gruela now instead of that other revolting name you came up with. A win for us all I’d say.

    Try to stay on the straight and narrow from now on burt.

  161. Nih 165

    Perhaps you could leave the discussion that Gruela asked for to people who want to do more than trade insults.

    I clean forgot this.

    Most priceless, precious comment of the night. To continue the alliteration you are the pinkest little princess I have ever perused. Want a lollypop peach?

    Seeing as you’re one of the most obnoxious repeat offenders AND a threat to all serious discussion, have you considered leaving the conversation yourself? If you didn’t notice, Greula was probably setting you up to fall. Rule number one of taking down deranged sociopaths: get them to elucidate their stance on everyday issues. You’re like a disenfranchised D4J, why hasn’t your crazy overflowed yet? Scared to shine, burt?

  162. Thomas 166

    All you do is prove over and over again that your are both stupid and a liar. Actually I’m surprised that you have the intelligence to operate a computer.WTF

    Anyone here know how many protesters attended the Christchurch March ?

  163. burt 167

    Nih

    If Gruela is setting me up for a fall then bring it on, you are trying hard to trip me up yourself but so far have offered nothing more than personal attacks. A bit of robust debate on the issue would be nice. Is the reason you haven’t elucidated your position because you don’t have one or is it because you get sidetracked attacking me?

    BTW: Who appointed you the spokesperson for the thread ?

    Is someone going to waste time debating with him or can we let him ‘win’? It would be very gracious of us to let the good old boys from the south have one.

    You neither ignored me, showed good grace, or debated with me – and you imply I’m a deranged sociopath !

  164. Nih 168

    I’m a deranged sociopath !

    :o

  165. Thomas 169

    Nih this just posted at the bog

    National supporters/posters are like a pubic hair on a toilet seat
    sooner or later one will come along and piss you off

  166. Nih 170

    Substitute burt’s deranged sociopaths for National supporters and it’s perfect.

    Normal National supporters are nothing like these narcissistic morons.

  167. burt 171

    Nih

    Jesus. You’re like a guy in blackface mock-shrugging while your audience goes hysterical.

    No Nih, I think it was only you getting hysterical. I actually wouldn’t mind if you would explain to me how and why I was racist because that misunderstanding is still a mystery to me. It’s a mistake I wouldn’t want to repeat again, which is more likely if I have no friggin idea what I said that was racist.

  168. Gruela 172

    Guys, chill out out for a minute please. As much as I truly enjoy such unashamed personal vendettas as you seem to have going, (it’s such fun to read), I would like to clarify a few things about what I wrote.

    I am interested about burt’s ideas about private education because I come from a rural backround, and while I will concede that a market economy may work for the provision of education in a large enough market, once you get into the farmland it becomes much harder to envision how a private provider who was failing to supply the local community with an adequate education framework for their children could easily be replaced. In this situation, the parents can’t decide to just send their kids to the school down the road.

    One of the fundamental tenets of a free market has always been the easiest possible entry and exit for suppliers, and I think this is the major problem I would have with a private education system out in the provinces where I live. I would be interested in your thoughts on how this problem could be overcome, burt.

    Also, I have to say I’m probably slightly more interested in the mating habits of the bacteria up my left nostril, than I am in how anyone spells my name. Just so you know.

  169. burt 173

    Gruela

    The rural environment is an interesting one. My family has branches into a very remote community where very recently the only local school has closed down. In days gone by there has been times when some of the wider family have moved back into the area on a temporary basis to provide ‘numbers’ to the school role to stop it being closed. It’s an unthinkable sacrifice for ‘townies’ to comprehend that people shift part or all of their family so that a local school is not shut down.

    However you make a valid point re: How can the govt control the quality when there is a single provider. The Ministry of Ed would be in a far better position to sack a private provider under simple get out clauses in a commercial contract rather than an employment contract.

    A motivated teacher (the kind we like) would work in either environment. So I don’t have an answer for you, but I do think your concerns about the private provider apply more so to the state provider. The venom against me on this site proves that any service provided by the state should never be questioned re: quality.

    In the broader sense I would like to see significant expansion of the independent school model and greater funding for low decile schools. I’d also like to see an approach that manages the school popularity vs unpopularity issues by changing (fixing, more funding, different teachers etc) the unpopular schools rather than restricting the zones on the ones that are popular.

  170. Gruela 174

    burt

    ‘The Ministry of Ed would be in a far better position to sack a private provider under simple get out clauses in a commercial contract rather than an employment contract.’

    Would it? I’m not convinced. Surely it would come down to how good the lawyer was who drew up the respective contracts. And I also think a large, (probably multinational) company would be more able (and therefore more likely) to challenge the Ministry of Ed in a prolonged court case if the Ministry were to end their contract, than a single teacher on a private contract would. And while this was going on, the kids and their parents would be left in limbo.

    I have two main problems with private schools:

    (1) Profit. In a free market, the providers aren’t going to produce the goods if they’re not making money. A state run system doesn’t need to supply a dividend (except for well-educated kids.) Ergo, state run = more money for books and crayons.

    (2) Community. The parents sending their kids to a state run school know that they actually own the school. Therefore you’re going to get a much higher level of involvement from the locals. In a private school I think you’d get a lot more of the attitude ‘well, let the teachers fix it. Isn’t that what I pay my fees for?”

  171. burt 175

    Gruela

    I can understand that you have little faith in the Govt’s ability to operate within a tight legal framework as would be required for a public/private partnerships involving schools. This issue is however another issue that relates to the current Govt and their apparent inability to draft robust legislation and/or stick within the law themselves, not something that is an issue with private provision per-sae.

    One of the things that I always find interesting is that the supporters of monopolistic state provision are very quick to identify that a single private provider might be under performing yet there seems to be some ideological stance that all instances of state provision are identical and off exceptional quality and value for money. You quickly point out that a private provider might be under performing and difficult to remove/replace yet the concept that a single state school is under performing seems to escape you. It’s also interesting that you seem to think that parents in private schools will just leave the school to it since they are paying for it, my experience is quite the opposite. Having kids in both private and state schools I think I’ve got a pretty good understanding of this. I’ve given up talking with the principal of the local state school, he just hides behind the “There is nothing I can do about it”. This has never been the response from the principals of the private school(s) I have dealt with, they know that their business depends on good academic results and good PR rather than just opening their doors in the morning and ringing the bell.

    I stated earlier in this thread that the relationship between quality of education and profit is loose. I can’t see how the state schools cant provide the same quality of education as private schools without the need to make a profit. Without the requirement to make a profit the cost to the consumers would be substantially lower (see integrated schools). However if you are are saying that profit is necessary for quality education then the stats on school results will generally back you up. I certainly won’t argue that’s it looks like there is strong correlation between profit and excellent school outcomes however I don’t think it needs to be this way. It is however easy to just say that the state schools can never match the private schools for resources, but that’s just a cop out. State schools can be excellent, and a few are even if they are zoned and not everybody can afford to live in their zone, but they will not be excellent if our expectations are low and we don’t demand any accountability from them.

    Class sizes are a big issue, high decile state schools are funded 1-30. (1 teacher per 30 students). This is ridiculous, completely head in the sand type stuff, especially against an 8 year old promise to fix health and education.

    Do you have an opinion on school zoning ? If you are from a rural area it might be something you have never had to consider, but like a lot of things that get done in monopoly provider situations, zoning is to make life easier for the Min of Ed and has no benefits for the students. Great for real estate prices however and if you have been lucky enough to own real estate in a school zone that has become in high demand it’s a big bonus.

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • So, predictions…
    I’ve been keeping track of the polls with my Poll of Polls (final update here), but of course polls technically aren’t prediction devices. They ask the question, “If an election were held today/tomorrow”, and are therefore only so useful when...
    Occasionally erudite | 19-09
  • IED Bradbury
    Poor Marytn. Not a good week for Mana, and not a good day for him. Let's review the tape: First, here's Martyn's initial post: With so many political forces lining up to take Te Tai Tokerau’s mana from the voters...
    Polity | 19-09
  • My election predictions
    Everyone else is doing it, so why shouldn't I have a go? Here are my predictions for what is going to happen....
    Imperator Fish | 19-09
  • Busytown: Good as gold
    Everyone should have read the book by now. No, not Dirty Politics (although you should have read that too). The other one that came out quietly at the end of last year and has become the silent witness to this entire election...
    Public Address | 19-09
  • What Is This Election About?
    Vox Populi, Vox Dei: The Voice of the people, is the voice of God - or the Devil. It depends in the end on what sort of people we are, or have become. THIS ELECTION is about us – the people...
    Bowalley Road | 19-09
  • Zoning out – is it time for a review?
    18 September 2014     The last few years have seen rising inequality between schools and the erosion of students’ right to attend their local school. These are just some of the impacts of the current school zoning policy that PPTA...
    PPTA | 19-09
  • Election eve nightmare for National
    The bad news for National and their leader, John Key, has been unprecedented during this election campaign. First there was the release of a book by Nicky Hager called Dirty Politics that threatened to derail the right wings campaign entirely.However,...
    The Jackal | 19-09
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Lovable Munter
    I know I've banged on quite a bit about Courtney Barnett lately, but oh my goodness she was great at the King's Arms this week. Her wordy, nerdy songs, her weird guitar-playing, her rockin' band and her lovable-munter persona, they...
    Public Address | 19-09
  • Vote
    Today is Suffrage Day, the 121st anniversary of the day women won the right to vote in New Zealand. Its rightfully a day on which we celebrate our democratic heritage (and it should be a public holiday, dammit). Its also...
    No Right Turn | 19-09
  • The story’s not done yet – a final post
    I think I'm going to skip the office sweepstake. I just don't know and I don't think anyone knows because undecideds, turnout and late movement could make a huge difference. This election campaign has simply been so volatile I think...
    Pundit | 19-09
  • Poll of Polls update – 19 September 2014
    It’s time for the final pre-election Poll of Polls update! We’ve had the last Herald Digipoll and Fairfax Ipsos poll results this morning, so we’re good to go. (If Roy Morgan suddenly publish a three-day poll this afternoon, then bugger...
    Occasionally erudite | 19-09
  • John Key’s Top 69 Lies: Today no. 1 – I promise I will always be h...
    John Key on HonestyTranscript: 22nd September, 2008Paul Henry: Do you promise you’ll never do that (mislead the public) if you become the prime minister? John Key: I do promise I’ll never do that.Paul Henry: Do you promise you will always be honest.John...
    Arch Rival | 19-09
  • Rail and congestion relief
    A conference by the Traffic Institute – a group primarily made up of councillors and officers from a number of local authorities around the country to represent views on road safety and traffic management – held its annual conference earlier this...
    Transport Blog | 19-09
  • Last Minute Election Prediction – Percentages and Who I believe Will Be T...
    Just 30 hours or so until we start hearing the results of this years general election here in beautiful New Zealand.  Most intelligent Kiwis are determined this year to get out and vote out the incompetent, dishonest and obviously corrupt...
    An average kiwi | 19-09
  • The Giant Strolls Out to Gaze Upon His Handiwork
    A little historical perspective on the eve of the Election for your mild amusement.....The Evening Post's immediate post-Election coverage in 1908:"All the long day that giant called "the people" worked his will upon the candidates, and in the evening he...
    Sub zero politics | 19-09
  • Ending “scientific” whaling
    Last night at a meeting in Slovenia, the International Whaling Commission closed the "scientific" whaling loophole, voting by a clear majority to enforce the International Court of Justice's ruling and require that such whaling actually be done for science. Future...
    No Right Turn | 19-09
  • Meanwhile, in Bomberland
    Today, Bomber hit back at this week’s MaoriTV poll which shows Te Tai Tokerau going down to the wire. Hit back, I say! His counter-evidence is a different poll of Te Tai Tokerau voters, by an independent polling outfit I'...
    Polity | 18-09
  • Will Judith Collins cost John Key his third term?
    So, apparently there will be an election tomorrow. If you haven't yet voted, you should do so by 7pm tomorrow. Otherwise one of the Electoral Commission's kill squads will hunt you down and leave your body lying in the street...
    Pundit | 18-09
  • All Over Bar the Shouting ?: My Predictions for the 2014 New Zealand Genera...
    So it's come to this, has it ?Having made extravagant promises in previous posts about completing a detailed Two-Parter analysing Poll support for each party in the 18-month run-up to the last two Elections and then, building on that analysis,...
    Sub zero politics | 18-09
  • 2014 General Election: Chris Trotter’s Prediction
    Your vote is your voice  - use it and be heard! National: 43.5%Labour: 27.4%Greens: 13.5%NZ First: 8.0%Conservative Party 4.0%Maori Party: 1.0%Internet-Mana: 1.0%Act Party: 0.5%United Future: 0.1%Others: 1.0%This posting is exclusive to the Bowalley Road blogsite....
    Bowalley Road | 18-09
  • Hard News: A call from Curia
    The phone rang last night and when I picked it up, a young woman said "Hi, is Russell there please?" It turned out that we didn't know each other. She was working the phones for Curia Research, the National Party's...
    Public Address | 18-09
  • Vandal
    It was great to have the chance to write "5 new taxes" on the Labour bus in Birkenhead just now. #WorkingforNZ pic.twitter.com/iBGgccM3Ap— Jonathan Coleman (@jcolemanmp) September 18, 2014...
    The Jackal | 18-09
  • Our democracy is at stake
    Another day, another story about the National government's corrupt abuse of the OIA - this time from Customs:A former high-ranking Customs lawyer says he resigned from his job after allegedly being told to bury information that could embarrass the Government....
    No Right Turn | 18-09
  • Election down to a knife edge
    Based on an average of the last four polls, and my prediction about who will retain their electorate seats, here's what the MMP seat calculator shows:I've kept United Future's Peter Dunne in as I believe the boundary changes in Ōhariu will...
    The Jackal | 18-09
  • Age is a number
    The polls have closed in Scotland and the count has started. Aside from the excitement of a nation voting on whether or not to become independent (peacefully!), there are a few other quirks about the referendum that have drawn notice....
    The little pakeha | 18-09
  • Last Poll of Polls
    Three new polls in the last 24 hours, five in the last few days. One day to go. And here’s where the Polity Poll of Polls puts things: National: 47.8% Labour: 25.4% Greens: 12.4% NZ First: 6.7% Conservatives: 3.9% InternetMANA:...
    Polity | 18-09
  • Maritime Union backs change of Government to put workers first
    A change of Government is required to deliver secure jobs and decent wages for New Zealand workers....
    MUNZ | 18-09
  • New Zealand maritime workers support PNG Coalition for Good Jobs
    The Maritime Union of New Zealand is backing the Coalition for Good Jobs in PNG, made up of PNG unions campaigning keep public assets in public ownership....
    MUNZ | 18-09
  • Getting The Message: Chris Trotter’s ‘From The Left’ Colu...
    Moments For Truth: In 2014 some of the biggest turnouts have been for journalists – not politicians.The extraordinary public response to these messengers and their messages tells us a great deal about the electorate’s hunger for the kind of journalism...
    Bowalley Road | 18-09
  • Hard News: Time to Vote
    I haven't voted yet. As intriguing as the electorate's unprecedented embrace of advance voting is, I like the idea of going out and casting my vote on the day. For the first time, we'll vote as a whole family, and...
    Public Address | 18-09
  • World News Brief, Friday September 19
    Top of the AgendaHouse Approves Arming Moderate Syrian Opposition...
    Pundit | 18-09
  • Media ignores Ombudsman overruling Key
    We all should be aware by now about the biased media in New Zealand and their various tactics to promote their preferred political party, which is invariably John Key's National party.Not only does the mainstream media portray the Prime Minister...
    The Jackal | 18-09
  • Call for papers – Universities in the Knowledge Economy: Transforming Hi...
    http://unike.au.dk/fileadmin/www.unike.au.dk/UNIKE_Auckland_Conference_Feb_2015_Flyer.pdf Conference at the University of Auckland, 10–13 February 2015 As public expenditure for research and teaching declines and pressure to commercialise their intellectual property intensifies, universities everywhere are being transformed. The notion that universities should become the engines of...
    Tertiary Education Union | 18-09
  • Comparing the polling
       I'm putting these polling results up to later compare them with the actual election results. 2011 General ElectionNational 47.3%Labour 27.5%Green Party 11.0%NZ First 6.6%Conservative 2.7%Maori Party 1.4%Internet MANA 1.1%ACT Party 1.0%Others 0.7%United Future 0.6%Average of 3 polls    ...
    The Jackal | 18-09
  • A Brief Guide to Voting.*
    For those who remain undecided about where their voting preferences lie, allow me to offer this brief guide.   If you are an urban hipster, video game geek or under 20 who likes to yell F*** you a lot, then...
    Kiwipolitico | 18-09
  • Person votes vs Dollar notes
    A modern society uses two main ways for regulating its public life; politics and the market. In principle the political ideal is 'one person, one vote', whereas markets are driven by 'one dollar, one vote'....
    Pundit | 18-09
  • Key’s Impossible Timeline
    May 1991 John Key is interviewed by the Serious Fraud Office He is asked to corroborate the statement of an ex colleague This colleague has told them he could be sure of a date, 31 August 1988, because he had...
    Politically Corrected | 18-09
  • What Winston Wants – the campaign edition
    What's going on in Winston Peters' head? That will be a question vexing several party leaders, thousands of voters and even some in his own party. Because whatever else the polls may or may not be telling us, the safest...
    Pundit | 18-09
  • Teflon Man No More
    . . On 26 August, as Nicky Hager’s expose on New Zealand’s right wing politics hit public consciousness and confirmed our worst fears, I wrote, “Dirty Politics” has achieved more than simply revealing  unwholesome machinations between National party apparatchiks, ministers,...
    Frankly Speaking | 18-09
  • Teflon Man No More
    . . On 26 August, as Nicky Hager’s expose on New Zealand’s right wing politics hit public consciousness and confirmed our worst fears, I wrote, “Dirty Politics” has achieved more than simply revealing  unwholesome machinations between National party apparatchiks, ministers,...
    Frankly Speaking | 18-09
  • It’s official: ACT’s Jamie Whyte is several-sandwiches-and-a-salad sho...
    .   . There aren’t very many times I agree wholeheartedly with our Dear Leader – but on this occassion I believe he spoke for those 99% of New Zealanders for whom common sense is as natural as breathing air....
    Frankly Speaking | 18-09
  • It’s official: ACT’s Jamie Whyte is several-sandwiches-and-a-salad sho...
    .   . There aren’t very many times I agree wholeheartedly with our Dear Leader – but on this occassion I believe he spoke for those 99% of New Zealanders for whom common sense is as natural as breathing air....
    Frankly Speaking | 18-09
  • Letters to the Editor – Spies, Lies, Five Eyes, and other matters on a S...
    . . Sharing a few thoughts and observations with newspaper editors around the country… . from: Frank Macskasy <fmacskasy@gmail.com> to: Sunday Star Times <letters@star-times.co.nz> date: Sun, Sep 14, 2014 subject: Letter to the Editor . The Editor Sunday Star Times...
    Frankly Speaking | 18-09
  • Letters to the Editor – Spies, Lies, Five Eyes, and other matters on a S...
    . . Sharing a few thoughts and observations with newspaper editors around the country… . from: Frank Macskasy <fmacskasy@gmail.com> to: Sunday Star Times <letters@star-times.co.nz> date: Sun, Sep 14, 2014 subject: Letter to the Editor . The Editor Sunday Star Times...
    Frankly Speaking | 18-09
  • Bringing your voice to Ban Ki-moon
    It has been a fantastic summer. Greenpeace has been in the Arctic for months, bearing witness to its extraordinarily shifting landscape, while challenging short-sighted attempts to find oil and explain to decision-makers that fundamental changes need to happen to the...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 18-09
  • Our love affair with personal mobility
    We often hear that New Zealanders have a love affair with their cars. Some people argue that driving is an essential element of our national psyche: even if we succeeded in providing good walking, cycling, and public transport options, Kiwis...
    Transport Blog | 18-09
  • Shameful, innumerate reporting of Herald poll
    The reporting of this morning’s final New Zealand Herald poll is nothing short of a disgrace. First, here’s the report: Moment of Truth gifts Team Key a late bounce in polls Last voter survey before election day shows jump in...
    Polity | 18-09
  • The Mail – merely mad, or essentially evil?
    I think the Mail has actually gone clinically insane over Independence.It's running a story titled "Salmond's bullies hit a blind man in the face - just for saying NO!" and referring to yes voters as 'separatists' who are likely to...
    Left hand palm | 18-09
  • Slater unrepentant for feral comment
    We all know that Cameron Slater is a bit of an idiot at the best of times, but once in a while he really outdoes even his very low standards. That was the case when the National party attack blogger...
    The Jackal | 18-09
  • The selling of New Zealand by our prime minister
    Article – Charles Drace The selling of New Zealand by our prime minister By Charles Drace 19 September 2014The selling of New Zealand by our prime minister By Charles Drace 19 September 2014 Author’s Note: this is a work of...
    Its our future | 18-09
  • 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
  • Predators on Poverty – Harawira
    “As poverty has ballooned out of control, the Predators on Poverty have emerged to suck the lifeblood from whole families and communities” said MANA Movement leader and Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira. “They are deliberately targeting low-income areas, particularly those...
    Mana | 11-09
  • MANA Movement Policy Launch
    Predators on Poverty (pokie machines, alcohol outlets and loan sharks) 1pm, Thursday 11th September Corner Great South Road and Criterion Street Otahuhu Shopping Centre...
    Mana | 10-09
  • Eliminating Poverty – Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate, Otara | Internet MAN...
    A campaign to Eliminate Poverty, Feed the Kids, build more houses, and create thousands of new jobs, was outlined by Internet MANA at a public meeting in Otara this evening. When MANA and the Internet Party first sat down to...
    Mana | 09-09
  • Housing in Waiariki – Sykes
    Fact:  Under this National-Maori Party-ACT-United Future Government 61% of Maori in Waiariki do not own their own home and nearly 70% of Maori rentals in Waiariki pay $200 or more per week. “Maori in Waiariki have low rates of home ownership...
    Mana | 09-09
  • Charter school crisis shows time to axe costly experiment
    Dysfunction from day one at a Northland charter school shows it is time to dump this costly and failed experiment by the National-ACT Government, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Te Kura Hourua ki Whangaruru received $27,000 in government funding...
    Labour | 08-09
  • Labour will crack down on loan sharks
    A Labour Government will crack down on predatory loan sharks by making it illegal both to charge exorbitant interest rates and to exploit uninformed borrowers, Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson Carol Beaumont says. Labour today released its Consumer Affairs policy which...
    Labour | 08-09
  • Let’s do the FEED before the weed
    “Last week I put out a very strongly worded email to my colleagues about an online promotion about cannabis law reform” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira “and I stand by that criticism today.” My concern was...
    Mana | 08-09
  • TE KAEA and NATIVE AFFAIRS live to fight another day
    “I understand that both the chair of the Board of Maori Television, Georgina Te Heuheu, and new CEO, Paora Maxwell, are now saying that my comments this morning about their plans to cut Te Kaea and Native Affairs, were wrong, and that...
    Mana | 08-09
  • How come the PM only pays 2.8% of his income in tax – Harawira
    “Before John Key talks about the piddling tax cuts he plans for low and middle income families today he needs to explain why he only pays 2.8% of his income on tax while a minimum wage worker pays 28% tax,”...
    Mana | 07-09
  • THE DEATH OF INDEPENDENCE FOR MAORI TV
    “If what I’m hearing is true, tomorrow Maori Television Service (MTS) will dump its news programme, Te Kaea, and staff will lose their jobs” said MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau, Hone Harawira “and the Minister of Maori...
    Mana | 07-09
  • Labour recommits to Pike River families
    An incoming Labour-led government will do everything possible to recover the bodies of the Pike River Miners and return them to their families, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “This tragedy and its aftermath has left the families of the 29...
    Labour | 06-09
  • Voting has started and still no tax plan or fiscal budget for voters to see
    "Even though voting for the election has already begun, National still refuses to provide any details of its proposed tax cuts. And Bill English admitted this morning that he won’t provide any specifics until after the election", Labour’s Finance spokesperson...
    Labour | 06-09
  • National’s partners’ tax plans cost at least $42 billion
    If National forms the next government its partners’ tax plans will cost the country at least $42 billion, and maybe as much as $50 billion, wreaking havoc with the books, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National claims to be...
    Labour | 05-09
  • Labour: Providing more opportunities for young Kiwis
    A Labour Government will ensure every young Kiwi under the age of 20 is given the opportunity to be in work, education or training, and plans to develop a conservation apprenticeship scheme to help do that, Labour’s Youth Affairs spokesperson...
    Labour | 04-09
  • Candles out on teachers’ slice of birthday cake
    Today may be Novopay’s second birthday, but there’s little to celebrate, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Novopay has cost the taxpayer tens of millions of dollars already, and the cost is still climbing....
    Labour | 04-09
  • National’s blatant broadband pork barrelling misses the mark by a country...
    National’s blatant pork-barrelling ICT announcement today should reinforce a growing sceptical electorate’s view that they are all about the gift wrap and not the present, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Instead of addressing the real issues - the woeful...
    Labour | 04-09
  • More evidence of the need to clean up the system
    The latest release of emails and messages between disgraced Minister Judith Collins and blogger Cameron Slater are more evidence of the urgent need to clean up politics, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. "This new evidence confirms a near constant flow...
    Labour | 04-09
  • Labour commits to stable funding for voluntary sector
    A Labour Government will establish long-term funding and streamline contract accountability for community and voluntary groups, says Labour’s spokesperson for the sector Louisa Wall. Announcing Labour’s policy for the community and voluntary sector, she said this would give much greater...
    Labour | 04-09
  • Better trained and skilled workforce under Labour
    Labour is committed to a skilled workforce that benefits businesses as well as their workers, and will increase workplace training to improve productivity and drive innovation, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Labour believes the Government should support New Zealanders into...
    Labour | 03-09
  • Labour will make renting a better option
    Labour will provide greater security of tenure for renters, and build more state and social housing, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Labour believes every kid deserves a decent start in life. That means a warm, dry and secure home....
    Labour | 03-09
  • At least 15 new taxes under National
    John Key is the last person to talk about creating taxes, presiding over a Government that has imposed at least 15 new taxes, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “John Key tried a novel line in the debate last night claiming...
    Labour | 03-09
  • Labour will strengthen New Zealand’s democracy
    A Labour Government will act quickly to protect and enhance New Zealand’s reputation as one of the most open and least corrupt countries in the world, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “The health of any democracy is improved by greater...
    Labour | 02-09
  • MANA Movement says tax cut on GST must be first priority – Minto
    “If Prime Minister John Key has money available for tax cuts then cutting GST must be the first priority”,  said MANA Movement Economic Justice Spokesperson John Minto. GST is a nasty tax on low-income families”, said Minto. “People in the...
    Mana | 02-09
  • The Maori Party’s Mana-Enhancing Relationship with National – Minto
    “First we had Cameron Slater and David Farrar backing Labour’s Kelvin Davis bid to unseat MANA Movement Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau Hone Harawira.  Now we have Slater writing a pro-Te Ururoa Flavell article on his website, Whale...
    Mana | 02-09
  • There’s Only One Poll That Counts
    “One of the oldest sayings in politics is that there is only one poll that counts – the one on Election Day – and that’s the one that I am focusing on” remarked the MANA Movement candidate for Waiariki, Annette...
    Mana | 02-09
  • Local communities critical to Civil Defence
    Labour will focus on empowering New Zealand communities to be resilient in Civil Defence disasters, says Labour’s Civil Defence spokesperson Clare Curran. Announcing Labour’s Civil Defence policy, she says that Labour will work with schools, voluntary agencies and community groups...
    Labour | 02-09
  • Labour looks to long-life passports, gambling harm review
    A return to 10 year passports and a review of gambling laws are highlights of Labour’s Internal Affairs policy released today. “More than 15,000 New Zealanders signed a petition calling on the Government to revert to the 10 year system...
    Labour | 02-09
  • MANA Movement Leadership stands strong behind Internet MANA relationship
    “There is now, and always will be, a range of views about many issues within our movement and members are free to express them, but Georgina’s views on Kim Dotcom are not shared by the MANA Movement leadership or the vast majority...
    Mana | 01-09
  • Rebuilding the New Zealand Defence Force
    A Labour Government will make it a priority to rebuild the capacity of the Defence Force to carry out the tasks expected of it, says Labour’s Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff. Releasing Labour’s Defence Policy today he said the NZDF has...
    Labour | 01-09
  • TVNZ election coverage – white people telling other white people why Nati...
    TVNZ election coverage – white people telling other white people why National Party is great...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • REVIEW: Royals of Kihikihi
    What an absolutely stunning show.  I had to ask twice to check I’d heard right that this is the first staged production for Samuel Christopher, who also played a raw, real, but vulnerable, Wolf Royal, home from London for his...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • 800 Cops to detain 15 ‘terrorists’ – why Australia’s hysterical Isl...
    I’m sorry but I can’t take this current Australian terror threat seriously. 800 cops to detain 15 people and arrest one of them? A week after Abbot decides to send in Australian forces to the cluster fuck of Iraq, suddenly...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Unbelievable corruption inside Government to attack Kim Dotcom
    The corruption inside this Government just more and more filthy – we now have an ex-Customs Lawyer quitting  after being told to bury information that could embarrass the Government, specifically to do with Kim Dotcom… Curtis Gregorash said he was told...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Everyone Loves A Win-Win That Keeps G...
      Permit me to quote some figures at you… -68% of New Zealanders think political news on television focuses too much on politicians’ personalities and not enough on real issues. This is the key result of a recent UMR survey commissioned by...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, another week of ...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, another week of being the most in demand broadcaster in the country...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • EXCLUSIVE: Te Tai Tokerau independent poll (44% Hone-27% Kelvin) vs Maori T...
    The Te Tai Tokerau Maori TV poll on Monday this week painted a bleak picture for Internet MANA supporters, and it’s results have been seized upon by Labour, NZ First and even the Maori Party (who seem set once again...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • The time for TPPA weasel words is over
    Almost every day of the election campaign there has been a policy announcement that would potentially run foul of what I understand is currently in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA):  more constraints on foreign investment or investors … regulation of...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • MELTDOWN – Maori Party turns on their own Te Tai Tokerau candidate – ag...
    The tensions are building in Te Tai Tokerau with the Maori Party on the verge of meltdown. Days out from the election, the Maori Party Executive has tried to heavy their own Te Tai Tokerau Electoral Committee and their own candidate, Te Hira Paenga,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • We Can Change this Government
    We Can Change this Government – Mike Treen at the First Union stop work election meeting...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Election 2014: For and Against
    With the general election tomorrow, we have had a very noisy campaign but little sign that the electorate wishes for a fundamental change of governmental direction. This reflects in part the fact that the economic cycle is close to its decadal...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Eye To Eye Uploaded: Martyn ‘Bomber’ Bradbury
    This interview was filmed a couple of weeks ago between Willie Jackson and myself, I was a tad off with my prediction of NZ First....
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • The Donghua Liu Affair – The Players Revealed
      . . – Special investigation by Frank Macskasy & ‘Hercules‘ Speculation that the Beehive office of Immigration Minister, Michael Woodhouse, was behind the release of a letter linking Labour leader, David Cunliffe, with controversial Chinese businessman, Donghua Liu, is...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • As if you needed another reason to boycott Telecom/Spark – they sold NZ d...
    It should read ‘never stop spying’. As if you needed another reason to boycott Telecom/Spark – they sold us down the river to the US by allowing the Southern Cross cable to be tapped… The ability for US intelligence agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • The NZ First-Labour Party attack strategy against Internet MANA better work
    The final days of the campaign are ticking down and Labour and NZ First are manoeuvring to kill off the Internet MANA Party by both backing Kelvin Davis for Te Tai Tokerau. It’s a risky gambit that they better pray to Christ...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Bill English’s latest insult to beneficiaries – apparently they are lik...
    National’s hatred towards the poor continues unabated as National desperately try to throw raw meat to their reactionary voter base in the hope to inspire enough hate and loathing to win back their redneck voters from the Conservative Party and from...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Eminem ain’t happy with John Key
    Eminem ain’t happy with John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Key claims he did not inhale
    Key claims he did not inhale...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Final prediction on election result 2014
    What an election campaign. The character assassination of David Cunliffe kicked things off with the Herald on Sunday falsely claiming $100 00 bottles of wine, $15 000 books and $150 000 in donations  from a donor that turned out to be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-09
  • Live blog: Bainamarama takes commanding lead in Fiji elections
      Interview with Repúblika editor Ricardo Morris and Pacific Scoop’s Mads Anneberg. PACIFIC SCOOP TEAM By Ricardo Morris, Mads Anneberg, Alistar Kata and Biutoka Kacimaiwai in Suva WHILE the results are provisional at this stage, it is clear today that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • 5AA Australia: NZ Elections Two Days To Go! + Edward Snowden + Julian Assan...
    Recorded live on 18/09/14 – Captured Live on Ustream at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/multimedia-investments-ltd 5AA Australia’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning deliver their weekly bulletin: Across The Ditch. This week, they discuss the latest news as New Zealanders go to the polls on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • What has Colin Craig done for his Press Secretary to quit 2 days before ele...
    This is VERY strange.  Colin Craig’s Press Secretary Rachel McGregor, has quit 2 days before the election, allegedly telling ZB that Colin Craig was a “very manipulative man”. I’ve met Rachel many times in the past as Colin’s Press Secretary, she is...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • “If you want steak, go to the supermarket and buy steak,” – A brief w...
    “If you want steak, go to the supermarket and buy steak,” said Key in the final leaders debate. Problem of course is that the 250 000 – 285 000 children living in poverty can not afford steak, milk, butter, eggs...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • National’s final bash of beneficiaries before the election
    On cue, whenever National feel threatened, they roll out a little bennie bash just to keep their redneck voter base happy. Nothing like a bit of raw meat policy to keep National voters focused on the evil threat solo parents...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • With All Of This In Mind, I Vote
    This is my last blog before the election and I really just want to speak from the heart. Right now in this country it seems to me that a lot of people consider the “essentials” in life to be simply...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Left has to vote strategically this election
    The dedication, loyalty, and tribalism of party politics means that sometimes the left lets itself down by not voting strategically. We all want our favoured party to get maximum votes, naturally, but the winner-takes-all approach doesn’t always suit multi-party left...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Dear NZ – as you enter the polling booth, stand up for your rights
    The last days before a NZ general election are a busy time as politicians make their pitch and party activists prepare to get out the vote. It is sort of weird watching from the distance of Europe the strangest election...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • What is Waihopai, John, if it isn’t a facility for “mass surveillance...
    John Key assured us on RNZ’s Nine to Noon programme yesterday that “In terms of the Fives Eyes data bases… yes New Zealand will contribute some information but not mass wholesale surveillance.” How does this square with the operation of the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Mass Surveillance and the Banality of E...
    Renowned journalist and intellectual Hannah Arendt coined the phrase “the banality of evil” to describe the normalisation of genocide in Nazi Germany. I thought of her phrase when I was listening to Glenn Greenwald and other international whistle-blowers talking about...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Election. Down. To. The. Wire
    Funny how last week it was John Key winning by 50%, now it’s neck and neck. I have always believed this election would be down to the wire and it is proving so. The flawed landline opinion polls the mainstream...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • 3rd Degree uses Whaleoil for story ideas as if Dirty Politics never happene...
    TV3s 3rd Degrees smear job on Kim Dotcom last night doesn’t bear much repeating. It was pretty pathetic journalism from a team who have brought us some great journalism in the past. It is sad to see 3rd Degree stooping...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Live blog: Bainimarama takes early lead in Fiji’s election
    Pacific Scoop’s Alistar Kata reports from yesterday’s voting. By Alistar Kata of Pacific Scoop in Suva Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama took an early lead in provisional results in the Fiji general election last night. With provisional results from 170 out...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Has The NSA Constructed The Perfect PPP?
    Former intelligence analyst and whistleblower, Edward Snowden – speaking live to those gathered at the Auckland Town Hall on Monday September 17, 2014. Investigation by Selwyn Manning. THE PRIME MINISTER JOHN KEY’s admission on Wednesday that whistleblower Edward Snowden “may...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • No way – Key admits Snowden is right
    After claiming there was no middle ground. After claiming there was no mass surveillance. After calling Glenn Greenwald a henchman and a loser. After all the mainstream media pundits screamed at Kim’s decision to take his evidence to Parliamentary Privileges...
    The Daily Blog | 17-09
  • Bad luck National
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • The incredible changing John Key story on mass spying – why the Moment of...
    While the mainstream media continue to try and make the Moment of Truth about Kim’s last minute decision to prolong his battle against John Key past the election into the Privileges Committee, the reality is that the Moment of Truth...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Themes of the Campaign
    There’s one area of a political campaign that just about everyone, at some point, falls afoul of. The campaign song. I’m not sure quite why it is, but it seems to be almost impossible for political parties to come up...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • GUEST BLOG – Denis Tegg – The NSA slides that prove mass surveillance
    The evidence presented by Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden on The Intercept of mass surveillance of New Zealanders by the GCSB is undeniable, and can stand on its own. But when you place this fresh evidence in the context of...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • Ukraine, United Kingdom, Ireland, Scotland
    The Ukrainian civil war discomforts me. It seems to me the most dangerous political crisis since the Cuban missile crisis of 1962. And it’s because of our unwillingness to examine the issues in a holistic way. We innately prefer to...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • John Key’s love affair with a straw man – the relationship intensifies
    John Key’s love affair with the straw man is now a fully-committed relationship. It’s now the first love of his life. Sorry Bronagh. Yesterday I pointed to Key’s constant assurances that there is no mass surveillance of New Zealanders by...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • A brief word on why Wendyl Nissen is a hero
    Wendyl Nissen is a hero. The sleazy black ops attack on her by Slater and Odgers on behalf of Grocery Council chief executive Katherine Rich is sick. All Nissen is doing in her column is point out the filth and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • She saw John Key on TV and decided to vote!
    . . NZ, Wellington, 15 September – ‘Tina’* is 50, a close friend,  and one of the “Missing Million” from the last election. In fact, ‘Tina’ has never voted in her life.  Not once. In ‘Tina’s’ own words, politics has...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • Eminem sues National Party for unlawful use of ‘Lose yourself’ bhahahah...
    …ahahahahahahahaha. Oh Christ this is hilarious… National Party sued over Eminem copyright infringment US rapper Eminem is suing the National Party for allegedly breaching copyright by using his song Lose Yourself in its campaign advertisements. The Detroit-based publishers of Eminem’s...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • Are the Greens about to be snookered by a Labour-NZ First Government?
    I wrote last week that it was smart politics that the Greens pointed out they could work with National, the soft blue vote that’s looking for a home in the wake of Dirty Politics isn’t going to Labour, so the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • BLOGWATCH: Fonterra join 2Degrees and boycott Whaleoil
    In the wake of Dirty Politics, advertisers are pulling their advertising out of Whaleoil. PaknSave, Evo Cycles Pukekohe, Localist, 2 Degrees, Fertility Associates, iSentia, NZ Breast Cancer Foundation, Maori TV, Bookme.co.nz, Dobetter.co.nz and the Sound are now joined by Fonterra...
    The Daily Blog | 16-09
  • PM Key accused of allowing secret ‘spook’ cable sensors to spy on citiz...
    Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald (left) and Kim Dotcom at the “moment of truth” political surveillance meeting in Auckland last night. Image: PMW By ANNA MAJAVU of Pacific Media Watch NEW ZEALAND Prime Minister John Key has been accused of...
    The Daily Blog | 15-09
  • Fiji pre-election ‘politics’ blackout stirs media protests, frustration
    BLACKOUT DAY – Monday, day one of the “silence window” in Fiji leading up to the close of polling in the general election at 6pm on Wednesday. And this is under the draconian threat of a $10,000 fine or five...
    The Daily Blog | 15-09
  • “Now the work of movements begins”: government corruption, media bias, ...
    I am so tired of the dirty politics of the National government, aren’t you? I am tired of John Key and his pathetic attacks on award-winning journalists who have spent their careers fighting and digging for truth and good. The...
    The Daily Blog | 15-09
  • Moment of Truth review, smoking guns and the awful coverage by the NZ msm
      There were queues unlike any the Town Hall has seen, 1000 were turned away once it became full…     …full to the rafters. The energy and atmosphere within the room was extraordinary, and it begun…   …Glenn Greenwald...
    The Daily Blog | 15-09
  • Why Maori TV’s Te Tai Tokeraou Poll will be proved wrong
    If Hone Harawira had a dollar every time the media wrote off his chance of winning Te Tai Tokeraou, he would have more money than Kim Dotcom. Remember the by-election? Hone was 1 point ahead of Kelvin in an exact...
    The Daily Blog | 15-09
  • Left Coalition Will Save Dolphins
    A left coalition would safeguard both Māui and Hector’s dolphins, as well as revive our inshore ecosystems. Labour, Internet Mana and the Green Party all have strong policies in place for dolphin protection. The Maori Party, and to a certain...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Waihoroi Shortland: Ngāti Hine is not standing alone
    The Chairman of Te Rūnanga a Iwi o Ngāpuhi, Sonny Tau is blowing smoke worthy of a Dotcom rally with claims that Ngati Hine is standing alone in its opposition to Tūhoronuku says the Chairman of Te Rūnanga o Ngati...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Oceania voices on environment loud and strong
    While money and energy continues to be spent on global talks about climate change, Pacific islanders are scrambling to build sea walls out of sticks, stones, shells and coral, to protect their lands and homes from erosion and rising sea...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Prime Time with Sean Plunket – Tonight
    No MPs tonight --- the campaign will be over at 9 30. Instead we will look back --- and possibly forward on what we have learned and what might happen. Listener Political Columnist Jane Clifton Editor in Chief, NZ Herald,...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Election fails to address youth financial wellbeing
    Young people don’t feel included in New Zealand’s financial success and believe inequality is a problem, according to a new survey conducted by Westpac’s Fin-Ed Centre at Massey University....
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Winston’s Waffle doesn’t hide the facts
    The Conservative Party is celebrating the ASA's finding announced today that rejected all but one of the complaints raised against its controversial “Conservatives or Peters” pamphlet. “Despite pages of complaints from Peters legal team the only...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • NZ Independent Coalition looking forward to tomorrow
    “Our team is looking forward to tomorrow. It is a real opportunity to reclaim politics for the people,” said NZ Independent Coalition leader Brendan Horan....
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Insights Issue 35/2014 – 19 September 2014
    Insights Issue 35/2014 - 19 September 2014 In This Issue • RMA reform the golden unicorn of policy | Jenesa Jeram...
    Scoop politics | 19-09
  • Special voting arrangements made for NIWA crew
    One of the most unusual polling stations for this year’s general election is in the middle of the ocean miles from land. NIWA’s flagship research vessel Tangaroa, has been doubling as a polling booth for crew and scientists at sea....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Tourism operators urged to vote strategically
    Tourism operators should make sure they know their local candidates’ view on tourism and use their vote to support the country’s second largest export industry, says Chris Roberts, Chief Executive, Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA)....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • WGTN: March for free education
    We are students, university staff, and members of the community. Whichever parties form a government after September 20th, we are demanding an end to corporatisation of education....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Evidence of Corruption a National Scandal
    Internet Party leader Laila Harré will take evidence of corruption to international forums if there is not a full Royal Commission to investigate the growing evidence of the systematic use and abuse of democratic institutions and processes for political...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Govt continues to throw money at charter school experiment
    Official documents reveal the three primary sector charter schools approved last week will cost $2 million to set up as well as divert another $1.5 million of potential taxpayer investment from local state schools next year....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • ACT Final Election Rally
    Elections campaigns are an opportunity for political parties to put candidates and policy to enable voters to choose what sort of New Zealand we want. In this campaign there have been three tests by which you can assess the electoral...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Taxpayers on Hook Again for Solid Energy
    Responding to the Fairfax article that taxpayers are extending another $103 million to keep Solid Energy afloat, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Invermay Petition Tops 10,000 Signatures
    People across New Zealand continue to express their disgust at the downgrading of Invermay, says Dunedin North MP David Clark, as the Save Invermay petition he instigated earlier this year topped the 10,000 signature mark just days before the 2014...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • McVicar vows to continue fight for police
    Garth McVicar stated at a public meeting last week that he would fight to retain a 24/7 Police Station in Napier and no reduction in the number of police staff for the Hawkes Bay region, some said he was simply...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Party Vote Our Weapon in Fight Against Government Corruption
    Internet MANA urges New Zealanders to use their party vote to confront corruption in any new government....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Election day is tomorrow – make sure you’re a part of it!
    Tomorrow, Saturday 20 September, is election day, and New Zealanders’ last chance to have a say on who leads the country for the next three years....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Is the Shape of our Government out of the hands of Voters?
    In the last stuff.co.nz / Ipsos Political Poll before Saturdays election, National is down 5.1% to 47.7% and Labour up 3.7% to 26.15%. These results are remarkably similar to the 2011 election where National received 47.3% of the vote and...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Spirit of Suffrage a Call to Action for All Kiwi Women
    Internet MANA is drawing on the courage and integrity of New Zealand women on Suffrage Day – Friday, September, 19 – to encourage them to pay tribute to the spirit of their foremothers who gained women the vote....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Live Election Night Coverage on TV And Online
    Māori Television’s KOWHIRI 2014 – ELECTION SPECIAL kicks off at 7.00pm this Saturday with a five-hour broadcast focusing on the Māori electorates....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Judge’s Decision Disappoints Fish & Game
    Today’s decision to give a Temuka man 100 hours of community service for selling sports fish to the public has disappointed Fish & Game, which believes the sentence handed down was “too lenient and will not go far enough to...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Cutting-Edge Graphics Fire up TV3’s Election Night Coverage
    TV3’s Election Night coverage, hosted by John Campbell, will be enhanced by cutting-edge graphics that will showcase the night’s results....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Govt rushes to open charter schools in New Year
    The government’s decision to approve four new charter schools last week to open in January next year goes against the Minister of Education’s own advice that the schools ought to have at least a year’s preparation time....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • 7 Days And Jono And Ben at Ten Hijack Election Weekend
    The 7 Days and Jono and Ben at Ten (JABAT) comedians are running their own version of election coverage, with a schedule of entertainment and comedy across TV3, Kiwi FM, the web and social media this Friday and Saturday under...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Fewer Prisoners Equals Less Crime
    In its latest blog, ‘Abolishing Parole and other Crazy Stuff’,’ at http://blog.rethinking.org.nz/2014/09/krill-and-womble-independent-policy.html , Rethinking Crime and Punishment urges government to rethink its approach to releasing prisoners. “The public expectation is that the excellent reductions in the crime...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • McVicar slams his political opponents
    I want a safe and prosperous society and that can only be achieved if we have strong and vi-brant families – McVicar...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Falling economic growth – wage rises overdue
    “The lower GDP growth in the three months to June is further evidence that growth has peaked. New Zealand’s economy is on the way down to mediocre growth rates,” says CTU economist Bill Rosenberg. “Yet wage rises are still weak...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Get Out and Vote campaign a success
    Tens of thousands of workers from all around New Zealand have embraced the Get Out and Vote campaign and have created their own personalised voting plan, the CTU said today. “With three days of voting left in the 2014 General...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Animal Research Failing – So Do More Animal Research?
    Victoria University of Wellington is about to host a lecture on why the success rates of pharmaceutical development is so low and what can be done about it. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) welcomes discussion on this important...
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • ALCP welcomes Prime Minister’s cannabis comments
    Mr Abbott's comments came on the same day as New South Wales and Victoria states announced they would be doing clinical trials of cannabis....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • Conservative Party Press Secretary Resignation
    The Conservative Party is given to understand that this morning Press Secretary, Miss Rachel Macgregor resigned althought no formal advice of this has yet been received....
    Scoop politics | 18-09
  • By ACT’s logic, Epsom should vote for Conservative Candidate
    “Polling released late in the campaign shows that ACT is a busted flush and that by ACT’s own logic, centre-right Epsom voters should vote for the Conservative candidate”, says Labour candidate for Epsom Michael Wood....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • New online medical system
    Immigration New Zealand (INZ) is seeking registrations of interest for a new onshore panel physician network to support an online immigration health processing system....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Students, You Have a Choice, Vote!
    The New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) is imploring students to ensure they make their voices heard this election, and join the many thousands who have already heeded the call....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Party vote ACT for three years of stability.
    Voters who are concerned that on the latest polls we may be heading for three years of instability have it in their hands to deliver a decisive result....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Women’s Suffrage Movement – Get Out and Vote!
    Tomorrow, Friday 19th September, MANA Movement Candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes, will cast her vote at 12 noon at the Zen’s Building, Rotorua. This will follow a march through Rotorua that will assemble at 10am at City Focus, Rotorua. The...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • iPredict Daily Update
    David Cunliffe and Labour have made gains over the last 24 hours, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict, but John Key’s National is still strongly expected to lead the next...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Conservative’s Proposal to Abolish Parole Fatally Flawed
    The Conservative Party’s proposal to abolish parole doesn't stack up, however which way you look at it, concludes Kim Workman in Rethinking Crime and Punishment latest blog, ‘Abolishing Parole and Other Crazy Stuff’ at http://blog.rethinking.org.nz/2014/09/krill-and-womble-independent-policy.html...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Special Edition : The letter 18 September 2014
    Dr Jamie Whyte has been giving thoughtful speeches largely unreported. So we thought we would put out an edited version on the speech he gave yesterday. The full speech is on the website....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Differences in educational level reflected in voter choice
    Differences in educational level reflected in voter preferences The Green party has the highest proportion of tertiary educated supporters and NZ First has the least according to an analysis by the Election Data Consortium. The Consortium is made...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Renters need assistance to improve poor housing conditions
    Thursday 18 September 2014 Renters are living in poorer conditions than homeowners and are less empowered to improve their housing situation according to a study by medical students at the University of Otago, Wellington. The fourth year medical...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Pacific Island Affairs & NZ Police to work more closely
    The Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs Chief Executive, Pauline Winter, and The Commissioner of Police, Mike Bush, are this afternoon signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Ministry and the New Zealand Police....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Te Hira Paenga sets the record straight
    In recent days there has been much speculation about my campaign in Te Tai Tokerau. Some commentators have suggested that I should step down or endorse the Labour candidate in an attempt to stop the Internet Party riding on the...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Last Chance to Enrol to Vote – Don’t Miss Out
    Last Chance to Enrol to Vote – Don’t Miss Out If you’re not enrolled now, you need to hurry or you won’t be able to vote in this Saturday’s general election. “Election day is almost here, and it’s your last...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Stuart Nash voted against wishes of Napier Electorate
    Napier Conservative Party Candidate Garth McVicar says the recent decision by the Advertising Standards Authority in reply to a complaint laid by Stuart Nash’s campaign manager confirms that Nash voted against the wishes of the Napier electorate. Robert...
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • What price life asks Conservative Party
    The Conservative Party are asking what is the price of life if the killer of a defenceless homeless man who was viciously beaten and left to die was jailed for just 11 and a half years....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • National Stands To Lose Votes If Animal Welfare Is Ignored
    SAFE has presented Prime Minister John key with a 40,000 signature-strong petition calling for a farrowing crate ban....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
  • Statement From Kim Dotcom
    Tonight Third Degree broadcast issues raised by three former staff members who are in dispute with us....
    Scoop politics | 17-09
Images of the election
Public service advertisements by The Standard
Comments close at midnight for the election. They will resume 7pm Saturday.