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Resource optimisation

Written By: - Date published: 9:48 am, July 6th, 2012 - 84 comments
Categories: housing, tv - Tags:

You might have heard of this new TV series called The Block, where they get 4 couples to compete to do up dilapidated houses. It’s the most expensive non-fiction programme ever made in New Zealand. It’s vacuous, contentless garbage. But what gets my goat is they took 4 perfectly OK, not flash but OK houses, and munted them so that they could be done up on TV.

Here’s the pictures of how the houses looked at the start of the series from the series website and, to the right, Google Street View pictures dated November 2009.

 

We have a housing crisis in this country. There aren’t enough modest but decent houses for low and middle income families. And we have a crisis of crap TV in this country. So, what does Mediaworks (a company itself in deep financial trouble) do? It splurges a fortune on taking four perfectly fine houses, bashing the shit out of them, and then getting some amateurs to do a half-arse job doing them up (you can bet ever corner will be but – no in-wall insulation or double-glazing).

It’s just so bloody stupid.

84 comments on “Resource optimisation”

  1. higherstandard 1

    Is it taxpayer funded ?

    • Dv 1.1

      HS – yes it is taxpayer funded.

      • shorts 1.1.1

        searching the NZ ON Air site it doesn’t show any funding for The Block

        http://www.nzonair.govt.nz/funding/fundingsearchpages/fundingsearchtvprograms.aspx

        not defending the show… nor about to waste my time watching it either

        • Dv 1.1.1.1

          Mediaworks got a 43m subsidy from the Nacts.
          Not directly funded, but we are paying as Taxpayers for Mediaworks.

          • shorts 1.1.1.1.1

            weak

            • Dv 1.1.1.1.1.1

              $43million is not weak!!

              • Fortran

                It’s a loan at a good rate of interest.

                • McFlock

                  That’s nice.
                         
                  Given that we’re so wonderfully in debt, it was a loan we lent out with borrowed money. Money we borrowed at interest.
                     
                  So we’d be lucky to break even on a deal that enables a supposed going concern to continue operating even though it failed to budget for a regularly-incurred and predictable operating expense.
                           
                  But it’s not like the government is helping out a media company at all.
                     
                  Query: if it’s such a good rate of interest, why didn’t mediaworks borrow from someone else at a cheaper rate? Or can’t they sort out  borrowing money for themselves, as well as being unable to budget for a mission-critical operating expense? 

                  • vto

                    Well McFlock, it has to be one of two things;

                    Either a facility available to all businesses

                    Or a related party loan.

                • mike e

                  Fartrain how many other businesses are given loans by the govt
                  Then Add Steven Joyce into mixture former Media works CEO share holder.
                  Crony-ism corruption!

          • higherstandard 1.1.1.1.2

            Isn’t that ‘subsidy’ actually a deferred payment which they’re paying back to the government and being charged high interest rate on ?

            • shorts 1.1.1.1.2.1

              subsidy loan call it what you want but it has no real bearing on the show in question…

              or is every single piece of content on mediaworks directly subsidised by the govt loan – of course not, its a silly argument

              I don’t agree with the handout/loan/subsidy the govt gave mediaworks in case you’re wondering

              • higherstandard

                If this show is government subsidised it is yet another waste of taxpayer money along with other shite such as shortland street, outrageous fortune etc etc

                • mike e

                  GC etc. Joyce has handed over programs that were developed by TVNZ to media works for free, more Crony-ism!

                  • higherstandard

                    There is a long sad history of mindless shit being funded by NZ on air under the red team and the blue team along with a whole heap of attendant troughers at TVNZ and within the acting and entertainment community …………a pox on all their houses.

                  • Vicky32

                    Joyce has handed over programs that were developed by TVNZ to media works for free,

                    Even if they’re rubbish, and they probably are, that sucks..

            • Lanthanide 1.1.1.1.2.2

              I think the point is that they weren’t paying market interest.

              • I thought they were paying market interest, at a far higher rate than the government can borrow for.

                It’s believed the loan is being made at 11% interest.

                Maybe they should make some more loans at that rate.

                http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/prime-minister-defends-loan-mediaworks-4109116

                • Lanthanide

                  Ahh, but then it comes down to what “market interest” means, doesn’t it?

                  If MediaWorks had to go to the government to get the loan, at the 11% rate, it means no other commercial lender was willing to lend at that rate on the terms that MediaWorks wanted.

                  Say a commercial lender was willing to lend to MediaWorks at 23%, then the “market rate” for their loan would have been 23%. If the government then charged 11%, they wouldn’t be charging the “market rate”.

                  Of course that is a bit of semantic word play: if the government was making a profit at 11% (and it appears they were), then in and of itself it isn’t a huge problem.

                  Except of course that the question must then be asked why the government is giving MediaWorks special treatment: what if Bob’s Butchery was going under, but a loan of $1m at 11% would prevent that?

  2. vto 2

    for fucking fucks sake they could have come to christchurch and not had to do that.

    and they could have helped some folk down here.

    it’s what you get in a society replete with wealth. another indicator of this is when society obsesses over food – see all the food shows. we are at a peak, that much is clear.

    • Vicky32 2.1

      see all the food shows

      I started watching Masterchef as a friend/colleague of my son was in it (she was eliminated about halfway through, sadly, – though IMO from paediatric nurse to chef is a huge step down… ) I kept watching, and was shocked at the huge wastefulness of it!
      It’s all about a certain type of cuisine that I find quite repellent… rare meat is sickening, and the expensive ingredients, tiny portions and emphasis on appearance speaks to a certain self-indulgent kind of ‘lifestyle’.
      A tiny point which is more a matter of my personal opinion – they’re such carnivores! A vegie dish or two would not have gone amiss…

  3. Chris 3

    Not sure this will make you feel better or not but there was an article the other day the other day saying that it is likely they will all be knocked down after the show anyway.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/residential-property/news/article.cfm?c_id=76&objectid=10815056

    Actually scratch that it makes it obviously makes it worse.

    • Deano 3.1

      that makes me how angry.

      and vto is right,. why the hell didn’t they do this in christchurch?

      • shorts 3.1.1

        do we really need reality shows taking advantage of the devastation of property and people in CHCH?

        these sorts of shows are insulting enough in themselves imo but no need to add insult to injury

        • Deano 3.1.1.1

          How would it be ‘taking advantage’?

          If you want to make a show about repairing broken houses, don’t go and break some houses and then do a crap job of fixing them – go to where there are lot of broken houses and fix them up properly, improving the lives of the people who live there.

          You could make it competition-based if you want and it would actually have some soul to it as well, much better TV.

          • shorts 3.1.1.1.1

            Christchurch residents need and deserve our collective help… not reality TV making light of their hardship in pursuit of advertising dollars

  4. It’s just so bloody stupid.

    Unfortunately that just about sums up much of commercial television in New Zealand now, including half the ‘news’ coverage.

    Commercial TV probably does cater well for the MacImbecilic demographic, which seems to be a sizable group. The rest are out of luck – it’s hard to even pick much decent pay to view TV.

    • Kevin Welsh 4.1

      Agree 100% PG.

    • bbfloyd 4.2

      still havn’t worked out how sky gets away with putting ad breaks on every channel bar the movie channel…. I thought double dipping was illegal….. or have the laws been quietly changed?

      Don’t have sky btw… Don’t enjoy being fleeced…..

    • mike e 4.3

      That’s your party included PG what happened to Tvnz7 !
      Handed over to the private sector for Free.
      Pathetic git still defending bad govt at all costs.
      Like the banking sector needed competition from Kiwibank.
      WE need a private broadcaster to give them a hurry up.
      But alas the worm helped turn of the last bastion of public broad casting.
      Pathetic Grovelar how did you get your ban lifted

    • mac1 4.4

      MacImbecilic? Oy!

      On behalf of the Macs/Mcs of this world.

      Mac1.

      I do agree with your view of commercial TV, though.

  5. Uturn 5

    It’s the most expensive non-fiction programme ever made in New Zealand.

    All “Reality” TV is fiction. I’ve seen five minutes of three renovation shows. There was a re-run of one recently, with Terry Serepisos. Some “teams” were trying to increase the rental value of viaduct appartments by seeing who could make theirs the most banal. I thought I was literally going to implode. Then there was an Aussie version, complete with bickering ego-toddler tradesmen, arguing over where to stack gib board, causing a similar reaction. Another where Aucklanders go round the country telling Hotelliers how to run and present their rooms and business. The only reality TV I like is Police ten 7. The way the old guy takes it all so personally. Hilarious.

    • McFlock 5.1

      I do recall watching one of those “Auckland business advisor teaches rull nuzilurs how to pay their bills” shows – one of the grateful average kiwis receiving his advice was in Alexandra.
         
      The suit told her to rent her garage out as a sleepout – okaay. However, the two had a disagreement because the suit wanted the garage just lined with gib, carpet down and bob’s your uncle. The owner refused to rent out as accommodation an uninsulated shell, on the grounds of general decency and a typical Alexandra winter (for the JAFA business folk here, the phrase is “life threatening”).
          
      The smart lady took some of his advice on bill management, and knew exactly when to tell him to stick his asocial amoral greed. The suit was talking to camera about being disappointed that she wasn’t doing everything she could to help herself, but I was most impressed. 

  6. Newt 6

    I agree. We are doing up our ex-state house at the moment… I was yelling and screaming at the TV because of what they did before and the morons they chose to do it.

    Unfortunately I will still watch it to see what happens and get ideas for our ex-state house…

  7. just saying 7

    Just as an aside,
    I’m sick to death of the competition format for a large number of “reality” TV programmes. As if we weren’t already soaking in cultural social darwinism. Competition in all things. Winner take all. Rardy rardy rah.

  8. Rupert 8

    Now come on – trashing those houses would have also done wonders for the affordability of the surrounding neighbourhood…

  9. RJL 9

    I fail to see a problem here.

    Sure, it might not be TV you want to watch — in which case don’t watch it.

    And while it might cost a lot of money, it is the sponsor’s money, and the money is mostly going into our economy. Presumably, the sponsors have calculated (correctly or not) that the programme will earn them a net profit (in terms of increased business or similar).

    • Deano 9.1

      So, we’re not allwoed to criticise anything as long as it doesn’t invovle public money and is profitable?

      Ethics and sensible use of our society’s limited resources don’t enter into it?

      • RJL 9.1.1

        You can criticise whatever you like, but I can’t see why this particular programme is so problematic.

        It costs someone a lot money, and likely seems dreadful if you are not part of the demographic it appeals to. However, it is no worse than any other TV programme made for entertainment (and the sponsor’s benefit). At least it’s made in NZ, so most of the money spent on it is spent in NZ.

        I would personally much rather watch The Block than say the Olympics, but I don’t begrudge (too much) the fact that the Olympics will be on our TV.

        • bbfloyd 9.1.1.1

          I have to admire your faith rj….. Can you point to the company(s) in new zealand that will make the most profits?

          Or are we looking at a crass misuse of adverising revenue that would have been spent anyway?

          This looks more like defending “broken window” economics, rather than any meaningful action that would, or could benefit businesses in auckland any more than any other form of advertising would have…..

          Indeed, it could damage the reputations of sponsors if this does turn out to be the turkey it’s looking like becoming……
          Verrrry clever…….

          • RJL 9.1.1.1.1

            bbfloyd,

            If you are interested in who the sponsors are, you can read the relevant press releases for yourself. I have no idea which sponsor will recieve the biggest payback on their investment, or whether this form of advertising is more effective for the companies involved than alternatives. Presumably the companies involved thought it was a good idea, and believe it can be justified to their shareholders.

            Some of the sponsors expecting a return (Kiwibank, say) are NZ owned, while others (Mazda, say) are international companies, but it is hardly the fault of Mediaworks that some of the companies willing and large enough to sponsor this sort of programme are foreign owned.

            “The Block” also employs NZ crew and the production expenses occurred largely in NZ, etc. I know that the production company Eyeworks is now foreign owned, but most of the production cost has been spent within NZ paying NZ crew, NZ builders, etc.

            You don’t have to like the programme, and you don’t have to watch it, but that just speaks to your own good/poor taste.

        • QoT 9.1.1.2

          “You can criticise whatever you like …”

          but

          “Sure, it might not be TV you want to watch — in which case don’t watch it.”

          Danger, Will Robinson! Paradox incoming!

          (And yes, dear critic, the paradox does involve recognising the hidden “and shut up” on the end of the second statement. It’s only clear as day.)

  10. DH 10

    I feel a bit sorry for the mugs who buy the properties. A rushed job is a crap job. The handyman skill of the average person is pretty low even when they take their time, bodging a quick do-up is guaranteed to cause grief & more bills for the new owners.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 10.1

      They use licensed tradesman for all the serious stuff, they just get to choose the paint and clean up

      Plus there is a site foreman on hand to check the tradesmen.

      This is how the real world works too – without the cameras

      • RJL 10.1.1

        Yes.

        The “mug who buys” one of these properties is actually getting a much better “guarantee” of quality work than somebody who buys a normal property.

        Most normal properties have been subject to numerous iterations of DIY of various skill-levels. The pseudo-demo work on these properties is actually a good thing from that perspective, as it resets the house to its basic structure. The damage done was actually pretty feeble and cosmetic and done to things like decking, gib board, windows, and toilet and kitchen fixtures. This would all be replaced anyway.

        The biggest risk (for a buyer) with these properties is that some of the design decisions will be tragically fashionable, and therefore date really quickly.

  11. Kevin 11

    The viewing public loves it, call it vacuous, a waste of taxpayer money etc, but it has been tipped as the biggest show of the year for TV3:
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/CU1205/S00200/tv3-breaks-new-ground-with-the-block-nz-partnerships.htm.

    • MAgnus McManus 11.1

      Doesn’t say too much about the viewing public then does it?

    • Vicky32 11.2

      The viewing public loves it,

      They know that how?
      I recall my son doing a study of ratings and how they’re determined, in media studies at school. Ratings households have to be homeowners, so that lets out a huge proportion of the population – and have to actually be blood families, no flatmates allowed.
      Apparently, old widows and/or widowers are allowed, as I heard of one nutty old besom who always tuned the TV to sport, so that any sport would rate highly, even when she was out! (In memory of the late Mr who was a sport-obsessive, apparently). This one old dear represented 400 people and so any piece of rubbish can rate highly, “The viewing public loves it” if one to ten ratings households can be induced to have it switched on, on the TV with the device attached. Let’s see, what would a yuppie house-buying couple want to watch? Oh, The Block, maybe?

  12. mike e 13

    If these brain dead producers had any grey matter up stairs they would be rebuilding houses in Christchurch instead of wrecking homes to get viewer ratings.

  13. Populuxe1 14

    So basically your big whinge is that the Government may have made a sensible loan to a NZ business to make NZ television programming that if other reality TV show of it’s kind are any guide to go by, will no doubt be enormously popular – but you think it’s beneath you. So really you’re just exhibiting pretentious snobbery for the tastes of the common Joe. Really nice.

  14. Jenny 15

    It’s tragic

    The concept of a staged competition pitting desperate combatants against each other for the entertainment, was a perversion 2000 years ago when it was first dreamed up.

    Everyone of these houses looks like an ex state rental. The first two definitely are.

    In both a litteral and allegorical drama on the privatisation of state assets – perfectly good state assets end up in the hands of private “investors” to do with as they wish. They proceed to wreck them, to squeeze maximum profit out of them, while those who these assets were built for go without.

    Compare the side by side photos of the first Labour MPs proudly carrying furniture into the first state rental, with these private sector wreckers. I imagine that these old Labour MPs would be shaking their heads in grief and shame that their great project to address poverty and end homelessness has ended up as a decadent television spectacle where people desperate for are home are pitted against each other in a sort of gladitorial contest for the entertainment of the masses.

    Whlle the cynical and jaded media Caesars who dreamed up this spectacle gaze over their bloodless but no less serious contest.
    The losers in these modern games will be condemned, not to death but to debt. While we cheer. (That is, if they can swallow their pride to take out a huge mortgage, to live in the purposely ruined and then horridly rushed patched up house, that they desperately tried to win, but instead will always be a bitter reminder of their loss.)

  15. Rusty Shackleford 16

    What a whiny tosser. They are a private company. They can do what ever the fuck they want as long as they act within the law. If it was paid for with govt funding, then sure. It was a stupid waste of money. But, it wasn’t so stop whining like a little baby, Eddie.

  16. mike e 17

    RS if it weren’t for Steven Joyce’s CronyismsTV3 would be bankrupt its relying on Gvt hand outs and glamorising of alcohol add’s

    • Rusty Shackleford 17.1

      They’re are behind on their licensing fees. The govt lent them money to cover the fees. That’s basically like the school bully who steal your lunch money giving you a line of credit for the arrears you owe him.

      I think the bigger issue here is the infringement on free speech caused by huge licensing fees. 

      • lprent 17.1.1

        Radio spectrum is a very limited resource. That is especially for analogue systems like radio and TV stations which broadcast over wide segments of the bandwidth. Personally as a programmer, I’d prefer that the waste of bandwidth is curtailed to a single plus backup channel with a fully digital broadcast for ALL broadcast media to multiplex in.

        I think the license fees are too low for broadcast media in comparision to alternate uses.

        • Rusty Shackleford 17.1.1.1

          It’s impossible to know whether the radio spectrum is priced too high or too low because it is monopolised by the state. 

          • Colonial Viper 17.1.1.1.1

            Not quite: the real question is whether the current pricing is achieving the social good required.

      • Colonial Viper 17.1.2

        I think the bigger issue here is the infringement on free speech caused by huge licensing fees.

        Which is why its important that parts of the spectrum are provided free to public broadcasting and non-profits, don’t you think?

        Sounds like you would agree.

        • Rusty Shackleford 17.1.2.1

          Provided for free by whom? 

          Public broadcasters and non-profits (as if that is some huge virtue) can easily broadcast from other avenues. Or they could buy broadcasting rights at the market rate (which is currently impossible). 

          • Colonial Viper 17.1.2.1.1

            So you disagree, even though it would greatly aid freedom of speech?

            I thought you were interested in increasing the freedom of speech of NZ citizens.

            • Rusty Shackleford 17.1.2.1.1.1

              Nobodies freedom of speech is being infringed under a system where broadcasting is not govt owned. 

              • Colonial Viper

                So why are you not for giving ordinary citizens easy ways to get airtime?

                • Rusty Shackleford

                  Ordinary citizens have easy ways to get airtime under the current regime?

                  Actually they do. It’s called youtube.  

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Its got to be TV time and radio time, that’s really valuable stuff for ordinary citizens to have access to so their voices and everyday stories can be heard.

                    Would you hinder their free speech and deny them that, Rusty?

                    • Rusty Shackleford

                      “Its got to be TV time and radio time…”

                      Why?  

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Because its VALUABLE that’s why. Even the corporates realise its VALUABLE. Are you denying the value of TV and radio time in promulgating free speech?

                    • Rusty Shackleford

                      Buggy whips were valuable once as well.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I thought you would be supporting ways to give ordinary citizens access to TV and radio broadcast time, and instead you’re trying to tap dance away from it.

                      you’re really not much of a free speech proponent are you?

                    • Rusty Shackleford

                      I’ll ask you again. 

                      How does the current regime give ordinary citizens easy access to free airtime. 

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I’m sure between the two of us we can think up some ways, right? Public broadcasting which gives people the opportunity to hear each others views, hear each others personal stories, etc.

  17. prism 18

    Actually it’s not just freedom of speech we ordinary citizens need, it’s also freedom of information as unskewed as possible, and without commercial influences, on matters affecting citizens and the whole country.

  18. prism 19

    CV
    I think there are large numbers supporting radionz and we’ll get back TV7 or similar I am sure as soon as we get these nation killing nasties out. Did you hear the discussion on Singapore’s methods and true situation on Radionz this a.m. I wouldn’t be surprised if Jokey Hen didn’t see them as a good template.

    and
    Rusty
    Buggy whips were valuable once as well.
    Used for whipping horses asses on occasions – still of value when so many h.as around.

    • Rusty Shackleford 19.1

      I think you failed to grasp the point prism. CV is lamenting that ordinary people don’t have enough access to broadcasting time. Which is about as dumb as someone in 1950 lamenting that people don’t have enough access to transport because the horse and buggy industry is in decline.

  19. prism 20

    Rusy S
    I got the idea that CV was concerned about the public getting quality broadcasting time, probably as opposed to the delivery of the sweepings from the minds of popular DJs. There needs to be solid informed stuff for the people who want to listen and learn something on how the country is running, could run and why the difference. I may be wrong, but I don’t think so!

    CV talks about hearing each others’ stories. I don’t know if he is referring to private station talkback but I hope not. Listening to the half-formed ideas of the populace doesn’t provide much light on their subject. It would be different if talkback callers had thought through the problem and had some positive suggestion to make. If this is the access to broadcasting time you endorse I think it’s time to call in the horses again, and follow up with a shovel.

    • Rusty Shackleford 20.1

      That’s the problem. Most people don’t want quality broadcasting. They want to watch trash television. Which is fine. If you want to learn something, read a book or download something decent off the internet. 

      • prism 20.1.1

        Rusty S
        No wonder our little nation is going down the gurglers with people as dismissive as you about being informed and the government ensuring that we are through providing full information and support to our culture’s self-expression freely to the nation.

        Get yourself a book what a suggestion. Reading any old book might be something for you to aspire to. Me I want a national broadcaster to inform us all, who have the interest and desire to hear, and see.

        And the internet is like a library without shelves and without a critical buying system. I do find some of it very good for information but much is unreliable, and much of what is there is from overseas, and I want to hear some overseas but more of what is happening here.

        • Rusty Shackleford 20.1.1.1

          Govt backed broadcaster does not automatically equal an informed populace. More likely the govt would spend a ton of cash and nobody would watch it. Lefties would be able to act smug and decry the lack of interest from the general populace and how the country is going down the gurgler. Meanwhile life would go on.

          • prism 20.1.1.1.1

            Rusty S Good reply from a don’t care about an informed democracy and responsibility of government to be nearly transparent to voters and taxpayers. I guessed this final comment so won’t bother to argue any more points.

            • Rusty Shackleford 20.1.1.1.1.1

              haha, you are a giant baby. Get in a huff, commit a straw man then take the ball and go home. Intellectually lazy (at best) in the extreme.

               

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    [Update: These are the demographics for the February, May and June 2014 Fairfax-Ipsos Polls. The May breakdowns only became available once the June Poll was released. The post was written well before the June Poll came out]A few days ago on...
    Sub zero politics | 09-07
  • To the North: Places I’d like to visit during our next trip to the UK...
    This Blog's devoted, first and foremost, to public opinion. Specifically, Opinion Poll analysis and the geography of the vote. But just now and then I'll indulge myself. This happens to be one of those occasions.Hoping to make a few side-trips to the following places...
    Sub zero politics | 09-07
  • A Leap into the Unknown: The June 2014 Fairfax-Ipsos Poll records a swing ...
    [This post is still a work in progress. I'll add bits and pieces as I go along][For the more detailed Fairfax/Stuff-Ipsos Poll breakdowns - either scroll down to bottom of blog and click on my earlier post 'Fairfax-Ipsos Poll - February,...
    Sub zero politics | 09-07
  • A Herald editorial I very much agree with
    Here is part of this morning's New Zealand Herald editorial, on the issue of domestic violence: When the Labour leader made his declaration of shame last Friday, a social scientist claimed he was wrong to say family violence was perpetrated...
    Polity | 09-07
  • Blackadder as it Might Have Been: Pilot Episode
    Recently found this rather strange (1982) pilot for the first series of Blackadder (which was eventually produced in 1983 as The Black Adder).The script and plot are essentially the same as the first series episode, Born to be King, although bits and pieces from the pilot were deleted (clearly...
    Sub zero politics | 09-07
  • Follow the Leader: Fairfax-Ipsos Preferred PM Breakdowns
     Fairfax have recently made their Preferred PM (by Party Support) demographics available. The methodology underpinning the Preferred PM measure in the four Public Polls that ask this question (Fairfax-Ipsos, Herald-DigiPoll, One News Colmar Brunton, 3 News Reid Research) tends to...
    Sub zero politics | 09-07
  • Not the war on men you’re looking for
    It’s headline news: Labour supports re-starting a Law Commission review initiated by Simon Power to investigate possible changes in our judicial system including the option of adopting an inquisitorial approach in cases of sexual violence. Shocking stuff! Hang on, why is that headline...
    Boots Theory | 09-07
  • Lies Damn lies and Statistics
    The 2014 Household Incomes Report, released yesterday, has been cherry picked by Government and opposition alike to show that the statistics match the story they have been telling. The Government uses a comparison with 2 years ago and shows things...
    Closing the Gap | 09-07
  • Of Angels and Angles
    Jim Anderton writes in the Herald in a very strong column about saving the Cathedral: The picture of the ‘ruin’ that has been put on television and on the front page of the Christchurch Press on dozens if not hundreds...
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 09-07
  • Polling and cellphones – sorry, Frank, salvation does not that way lie (p...
    Part 1 of this post was in response to a post on the Daily Blog by Frank Macskasy entitled “TV3 News on Polling Cellphone Users – Only A Year Late“. Part 1 dealt largely with the methodology issues that polling companies...
    Occasionally erudite | 09-07
  • A great use for drones
    Here is some of the most beautiful fireworks footage ever shot, thanks to drone / UAV technology. Who knew! Enjoy. (H/T: IFLScience) Filed under: fun...
    Polity | 09-07
  • MSD report report – Vulnerable Kiwis
    One of the most disturbing elements of the recent MSD report is the fate of those who really struggle to get by in New Zealand, like women living on the DPB and family assistance, or people on an invalid’s benefit....
    Polity | 09-07
  • MSD dumps on National’s “net tax” nonsense
    Even the government's own advisors think the "net tax" figures have been brandishing in recent years are a crock. Here's an exact from page 20 of MSD's Household Incomes Report out yesterday: For half of households with dependent children the...
    Polity | 08-07
  • End of a footballing dream
    I had a dream for this World Cup. I dreamed of these two fans - possibly the coolest two fans in the world today - meeting in Rio at the Final. That would have been grand. No more. Ouch. Also,...
    Polity | 08-07
  • YESTERDAY’S RUBBISH..why is a minimum wage different from Free Trade?
    Andrew WattGermany’s first post-war Chancellor Konrad Adenauer is usually held to be the origin of an often-quoted phrase „Was kümmert mich mein Geschwätz von gestern?“. Roughly: why should I be concerned about the rubbish I talked yesterday? Whatever the rights...
    the Irascible Curmudgeon | 08-07
  • MSD report report – Inequality
    The latest edition of MSD’s invaluable Household Incomes Report came out yesterday. I have had a chance to look at the key findings, and will spend more time with it later. The report says that, since 2008, after tax cash...
    Polity | 08-07
  • Enhancing New Zealand – Japan cooperation
    Press Release – New Zealand Government The Prime Minister of New Zealand Rt Hon John Key and the Prime Minister of Japan His Excellency Shinzo Abe met in Auckland on 7 July 2014. Prime Minister Key welcomed Prime Minister Abe...
    Its our future | 08-07
  • Polling and cellphones – sorry, Frank, salvation does not that way lie (P...
    At the Daily Blog, Frank Macskasy is back on one of his favourite hobby horses, which is essentially that you can’t trust the polls because they don’t call people’s cellphones. Mr Macskasy lives in the hope that a vast conglomeration of the young...
    Occasionally erudite | 08-07
  • I’m sorry Mrs Powel of Philadelphia, you couldn’t.
      In the last couple of days, German publication Das Erste released a story and some source code of an application the NSA use to collect data on a large group who they classify as ‘extremists’. Journalists, researchers, activists and...
    eropei | 08-07
  • Why the Greens’ Abortion Policy Is So Important
    By Dr. Morgan Healey, President ALRANZ Note: Alranz exec members wrote two op-eds that were submitted to The New Zealand Herald (APN) and The Waikato Times (Fairfax) on 8 June, two days after the Green’s policy was announced. They weren’t...
    ALRANZ | 08-07
  • Labour’s Education Policies A Must For All Caring Parents – Even John K...
          Need I say more?      Of course National (other than John Key who has already admitted smaller class sizes are better – as per photo) are saying their policy of paying a handful of teachers and...
    An average kiwi | 08-07
  • Robert Reich on the 7 big lies told by neo-liberal politicians.
    This video is worth watching and listening to as Robert Reich exposes the fallacies that underpin the neo-liberal economics so beloved by John Key and his asset stripping cronies. http://youtu.be/mM5Ep9fS7Z0...
    the Irascible Curmudgeon | 07-07
  • The extraordinary use of extraordinary powers
    Here in Christchurch, we’ve grown used to the government exercising the extraordinary powers that they’ve had since the quake. While they were granted so that they could get the recovery moving, they seem to have been mainly used so that...
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 07-07
  • Beth Heke vs Jake Heke: 1-1?
    There has been some troubling discussion of domestic violence this morning, with David Farrar among others pointing to an Otago University study to argue that, for many, but not all forms of family violence, women are about as bad as...
    Polity | 07-07
  • The toughest issue for the next term
    Two senior cabinet figures talked international affairs last Wednesday, one all crisp intellect, one a conversational amble. No prize for guessing which was Tim Groser and which John Key. Both made the optimists’ trade case, Groser with a wide span...
    Colin James | 07-07
  • Gordon Campbell on the BNP Paribas case, and Dotcom
    Column – Gordon Campbell So the extradition hearing for Kim Dotcom has been delayed until next February. In another long running drama, a final deal on the Trans Pacific Partnership trade pact is hoped for by years end. If a...
    Its our future | 07-07
  • iPredict Election Update: Maori Party in serious trouble
    Press Release – iPredict Maori Party in serious trouble, with 57% chance of leaving Parliament Combined Labour/Green vote rises Conservatives up at expense of NZ First, but not expected to win seat National now expected to win Palmerston North and...
    Its our future | 07-07
  • Carolyn McKenzie stands in Hamilton East
    Press Release – Democrats for Social Credit Accomplished curator, art reviewer and consultant Carolyn McKenzie is standing for the Democrats for Social Credit Party (DSC) in Hamilton East. MEDIA RELEASE Tuesday 8 July 2014 Carolyn McKenzie stands in Hamilton East...
    Its our future | 07-07
  • Palau first to start work on climate and disaster plan
    Press Release – SPREP Palau – Palau is the first island nation to begin work on a project to develop Climate and Disaster Resilience Plans for national broadcasters through an emergency management for media course that was completed on Thursday.Palau...
    Its our future | 07-07
  • Public service glad to help revitalise Christchurch CBD
    The Public Service Association (PSA) is welcoming the announcement that public sector workers will be returning to the Christchurch CBD...
    PSA | 07-07
  • Better waste practices to showcase Samoa as: green, healthy
    Press Release – SPREP The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Ministry of Health and the Samoa Tourism Authority, in partnership with the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), have embarked...
    Its our future | 07-07
  • DSC selects Mischele Rhodes for Hamilton West
    Press Release – Democrats for Social Credit Patient’s Rights Advocate Mischele Rhodes has been selected as the Democrats for Social Credit Partys candidate for Hamilton West. As Vice President of Patient’s Rights Advocacy Waikato, Ms Rhodes says she is “passionate...
    Its our future | 07-07
  • Tim Groser: Address to the India NZ Business Council
    Speech – New Zealand Government Address to the India NZ Business Council Around the world, friends of India, strategists, business groups and others are all starting to ask a rather important question. With the landslide victory of the BJP over...
    Its our future | 07-07
  • Will National drop 6% in three months? A less than serious analysis…
    Rob Salmond at Polity notes that in the 2008 and 2011 election campaigns, National has dropped 6% in the three month campaign window. His analysis is fairly simple: All I did was find any published poll where the field dates included...
    Occasionally erudite | 07-07
  • Enough for everyone
    Why is it when New Zealand has a supposed rock star economy that the poor continue to take the rap? For thirty years employers have driven their workers ever harder for the same or similar pay. They have claimed that...
    Closing the Gap | 06-07
  • Greens say John Key must clarify where he stands on marriage equality
    John Key has left many with the impression he will repeal marriage equality if elected into Parliament again, said the Green Party today. Reports have emerged that at a meeting with Pacific church leaders in Mangere, on Tuesday, many attendees...
    Greens | 11-07
  • McCully mustn’t shirk scrutiny during inquiry
    The inquiry into Foreign Affairs' handling of allegations of attempted rape by a Malaysian diplomat must investigate all the actions taken by Murray McCully during this fiasco, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.A Ministerial inquiry has been launched into...
    Greens | 11-07
  • Government punishes beneficiary babies
    Papers released to the Green Party shows that the Government turned their back on babies of beneficiaries against official advice, said the Green Party today. Documents released by Treasury to the Green Party under the Official Information Act show that...
    Greens | 10-07
  • Te Hamua to do ice challenge so others can survive cancer too
    At noon tomorrow in the Kaiti Mall in Gisborne, Te Hamua Nikora, MANA candidate for Ikaroa Rawhiti, is taking on the ice challenge to raise awareness of the importance of getting regular health checks for testicular cancer and raise funds...
    Mana | 10-07
  • National breaks promise to insulate every state house
    National has broken its promise to insulate every state house by the end of 2013, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today."Of the 68,386 houses under Housing New Zealand's management, 30 percent have not been insulated. That is a dismal...
    Greens | 09-07
  • McCully should stand down while review considers his actions
    The Green Party is calling for the review into Foreign Affairs' handling of allegations of attempted rape by a Malaysian Diplomat to be expanded to cover actions of Ministers, and for the Minister of Foreign Affairs to stand down while...
    Greens | 09-07
  • No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto
    “Labour’s education policy announcements last weekend have several welcome features which would be supported by Mana but we are concerned at the “user pays” proposal for children to get the educational benefits of access to the internet,” says Mana Education...
    Mana | 09-07
  • Internet Mana – “the Roadtrip!”
    Internet MANA will change the Government because it’s time to create an inclusive and independent Aotearoa. We are not afraid to disrupt the status quo, to fix what is not working and innovate with new ideas. Let’s reconnect New Zealand,...
    Mana | 09-07
  • Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles
    Evidence heard in today's inquest into the death of Jane Farrelly highlights the Police's ongoing failure to protect people on bicycles, the Green Party said today. The Police decided not to prosecute the driver involved in a fatal collision with...
    Greens | 09-07
  • High cost of storm damage sign of things to come
    New figures showing storm damage cost New Zealand $77 million in the first half of the year are a reminder of what we're up against with climate change, the Green Party said today.According to the Insurance Council of New Zealand,...
    Greens | 09-07
  • SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent
    National has done a deal with a company that continues to flout New Zealand's gambling regulations, Green Party gambling spokesperson Denise Roche said today.In a media sting earlier this year, an elderly man was allowed to play pokie machines continuously...
    Greens | 09-07
  • Please explain Minister… yet again
    Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy needs to explain what is going on with our export of sheep casings to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Our exports of partially processed casings to China have been halted and no...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’
    A Labour Government will put ICT at the highest level of Government by creating the position of Chief Technology Officer to directly advise the Prime Minister and Cabinet on Information Technology issues, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Reporting directly...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high
    There’s no cause for celebration with the latest Household Incomes Report showing the number of children living in severe poverty has reached its highest level this century, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “New Zealand once valued itself as the...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Government in denial over income inequality
    Today’s Household Incomes Report from MSD underscores National’s continued failure to recognise inequality is a problem and is getting worse, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “The report shows income inequality has increased over the past year and remains higher...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes
    National’s decision to cut nearly $2.5 million from adult and community education in Canterbury over the past five years was short-sighted and Labour is committed to restoring funding for the sector, Labour’s Associate Tertiary Education spokesperson Megan Woods says. “The...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis
    Latest Government data proves John Key is not working for all New Zealanders as the incomes of the poorest half of kiwis stayed the same in the 6 years under National, while the top 20 percent's rose by thousands, the...
    Greens | 08-07
  • Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour
    Labour has been very clear that it is necessary to review and evaluate the effectiveness of Whanau Ora for Māori, says Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. "I was pleased to meet with social service, youth, justice and health providers who...
    Labour | 08-07
  • No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy?
    Another significant shortfall in the Government’s books suggests the economic recovery may have already passed most New Zealanders by, Labour’ Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “With unemployment still high, wage rates stagnating and inequality widening, only the lucky few are...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Survey shows parents want smaller class sizes
    A new survey finding most parents believe class sizes are too big shows Labour is right to reduce them, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The Post-Primary Teachers' Association survey of 750 people conducted by UMR Research found 54 per...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Crime targets no excuse for fewer prosecutions
    Police are being instructed to charge fewer people in order to meet National’s crime reduction targets, Labour says. “Front line police and others in the criminal justice system are telling us police have had pressure put on by senior officers...
    Labour | 07-07
  • QV figures show two-track housing market
    The two-track housing market that has developed under National is underlined in QV’s latest report, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “QV’s index shows many homeowners in the regions are facing declining equity in their properties, while in Auckland and...
    Labour | 07-07
  • Housing figures National’s shame
    The number of Auckland households in urgent and serious need of housing has increased tenfold since March 2012, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.The Ministry of Social Development, which took over Housing New Zealand's assessment responsibility for social housing...
    Greens | 07-07
  • Fed Farmers leading wrong way on water
    Federated Farmers needs to show greater leadership on water quality, the Green Party said today. The Green Party is responding to claims by the outgoing and incoming Federated Farmers' dairy section chairs that 'there is no need for urgent action"...
    Greens | 07-07
  • John Key must get whaling assurance from Abe
    John Key must seek a concrete assurance from Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that Japan will not flout the International Court of Justice's (ICJ) ruling on whaling, the Green Party said today.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is meeting with...
    Greens | 06-07
  • HAVE A KITKAT DAVID, THERE’S A LONG WAY TO GO YET – Harawira
    “Internet MANA is not ruling out the possibility of a entering into coalition with Labour after the election”, said Internet MANA leader Hone Harawira with tongue firmly in cheek, after Labour leader David Cuniliffe said it was ‘highly unlikely’ that...
    Mana | 06-07
  • Government underfunding jeopardises recycling
    The Government's underfunding of the TV Takeback scheme jeopardises the whole e-waste drop-off network across the country, the Green Party said today. The TV Takeback scheme was put in place to deal with the glut of old TVs needing to...
    Greens | 04-07
  • Whaling must be top of agenda for Japan PM visit
    New Zealand must make protecting whales a priority during next week's visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Green Party oceans spokesperson Gareth Hughes said today.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will make an official visit to New Zealand next week...
    Greens | 04-07
  • ACC investments risking native species
    The National Government has invested in a gold drilling company whose activities threaten a critically endangered native frog species, the Green Party has revealed today.Despite being a signatory to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC)...
    Greens | 03-07
  • Small class sizes and school meals get another big tick in schools report
    “Congratulations to the Child Poverty Action Group for making it crystal clear what’s needed to ensure kids from the least well-off communities can get the best out of school” said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau. ...
    Mana | 03-07
  • Government’s bottom lines for water create a licence to pollute
    The Government has pulled the plug on cleaning up our dirty rivers so they are safe for swimming, the Green Party said today. The Green Party was commenting on the Government's national bottom lines for water quality released today by...
    Greens | 02-07
  • Green Party’s answer to climate Big Ask
    The Green Party has welcomed a Gen Zero report calling for concrete climate commitments from all parties ahead of the election."Gen Zero's Big Ask report is a timely reminder about what real climate action looks like," said Green Party Climate...
    Greens | 02-07
  • Shots fired at Mana office – Harawira
    “I get threatened with violence and I get death threats, but when somebody starts taking shots at my office then that’s another matter altogether”,  said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira after shots were fired at one of...
    Mana | 01-07
  • Protecting Papatuanuku a Priority for MANA – Harawira
    “Big ups to Greenpeace for their Climate Voter initiative http://www.climatevoter.org.nz/”, said Hone Harawira, MANA leader and MP for Tai Tokerau. “Letting people see which parties stand up for Papatuanuku and which parties stand for overdevelopment and pollution should help focus their...
    Mana | 01-07
  • Ae Marika! 1 July 2014
    I got a really good response to last week’s article about forestry safety, including this gem from an old mate - “Back in the early 70′s our Maori bush gangers showed you the ropes. You never forgot a thing they...
    Mana | 30-06
  • Green Party MP Holly Walker to step down from party list
    Green Party MP Holly Walker has decided to withdraw from the party's list in the upcoming election and will not seek a second term in Parliament. Ms Walker was number 12 on the Green Party list."Unfortunately, a recent unexpected change...
    Greens | 30-06
  • Pasifika Immigration Plans for Labour- too little, too late – James Papal...
    The Labour Party has recently announced that it has plans to speed up family reunification for Pasifika people. “I have seen these plans and I believe that these are too timid” says MANA Pasifika vice President, James Papali’i. “After waiting...
    Mana | 30-06
  • Support for USA in Iraq “not a deal to die for” – Harawira
    “When John Key says ‘New Zealand fully supports the current steps announced by President Obama (in Iraq) 100%’ he is one step away from committing our troops simply to get a good trade deal with the USA,” said MANA Leader...
    Mana | 24-06
  • Ae Marika! 23 June 2014
    Another key spot for me to meet people is Auckland Airport, on my way back from parliament to either go to Waitakere or the North Shore, or to catch link flights to Whangarei, Kerikeri, or Kaitaia on constituency business. Every...
    Mana | 23-06
  • There is a war being waged on NZ men… at least according to this Facebook...
    Men’s masculinity is under attack in New Zealand and four people, one of whom is a woman (it always stings that little bit more when a woman is pushing anti-feminist ideas), have created a Facebook page to do something about it....
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Dear hysterical NZ Men – Women’s rights are no threat to our masculinit...
    How insecure in your masculinity must you feel to buy into believing Labour are declaring a war on men? This Facebook site, The Labour Party’s War on Men, is a real voyage through the psyche of angry men angry at...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Education reforms – there is a choice
    To have the Education Minister and the sycophantic mainstream media constantly asserting that the only way to improve the education our children get is to reform the system by privatisation, performance pay, and the collection of a few data sets...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Not That Different After All: Some thoughts on Neoliberalism
    OVER THE PAST 35 YEARS,  the neoliberal ideology has been adopted by virtually the entire Right. Certainly, there is no serious right-wing political party – either here in New Zealand or elsewhere in the developed world – that does not...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Hone Harawira
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • #TeamKeyJr
    #TeamKeyJr...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Random Thoughts on Random Things #7 – the fate of the Maori Party
    . . Watching Pita Sharples interviewed on TV3′s ‘The Nation’ on 5 July, two things occurred to me. 1. There is every likelihood that, come election day,  the Maori Party is doomed. If they are really, really, really lucky, they...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Every bomb Israel drops on Gaza creates 10 new ‘terrorists’
    The latest round of horror Apartheid Israel is using to justify their latest disproportional response seeds from a couple of events. America’s need to talk to Iran because of Iraq has spooked Apartheid Israel into manufacturing a new crisis that...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • Media Release: 2014 Household Incomes Report from MSD
    MIL OSI – Source: Child Poverty Action Group – Headline: Media Release: 2014 Household Incomes Report from MSD 10 July 2014 CPAG says high child poverty rates have become normalised and New Zealand’s poorest children should expect a far greater...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • How can New Zealand help defend the Palestinian struggle?
    FOR MOST NEW ZEALANDERS the Middle East is shorthand for war without end. When I was growing up most of us knew no better than to believe Israel was a small, plucky state standing up to big, thuggish neighbouring bullies....
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • “I got an apology”… said no survivor of rape or gendered violence eve...
    When I was 15 my cousin who lived with me and my mum would come home black and blue. Her dealer and boyfriend, Nick Ge used to beat her for whatever reason, for whatever justification he saw fit. Men who...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • NZ – Inequality and poverty measured
    The Household Incomes Reports by the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) are providing powerful evidence that New Zealand is a deeply unequal society with intractable levels of poverty that includes many with jobs as well as those without. The reports which are...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Child Poverty Action Group – Those with the least left furthe...
    This week a delighted – and no doubt relieved – Minister of Social Development gave us the news we had all been waiting for: under her careful watch, child poverty has fallen 3%. The figures are in the latest Ministry...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Charter Schools are working, why not ...
    Tomorrow is the third anniversary of the day Parliament dumped the TVNZ Charter, ceremoniously, by 64 MPs to 56.   The Broadcasting Minister of the day, one J Coleman, said without too much of a smirk that the removal of the charter would have little...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release “Motorists passing people on bicycles and other vulnerable road users owe them a high duty of care.”...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • High cost of storm damage sign of things to come
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: High cost of storm damage sign of things to come Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release New figures showing storm damage cost New Zealand $77 million in the first half of...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release National’s deal with SkyCity means that a company that flout’s New Zealand’s gambling regulations has the opportunity to greatly...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Please explain Minister… yet again
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Please explain Minister… yet again Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy needs to explain what is going on with our export of sheep casings to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says....
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’ A Labour Government will put ICT at the highest level of Government by creating the position of Chief Technology Officer to directly advise the...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Murray McCully must go: sign the petition to demand his resignation
    Sign the petition to demand Murray McCully resign and stand with Tania Billingsley and the thousands of women who have survived sexual assault in New Zealand. Tania Billingsley, who is at the centre of the Malaysian diplomat case, has lifted her own...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • More mining our protected places
    Today is the last day for submissions on Chatham Rock Phosphate’s (CRP) marine consent application to mine the seabed in a protected area, in our most productive fishery. I just got my submission in which you can read here. This...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Poverty and inequality denial are no reasons for celebration
    The headlines proclaim that concerns about poverty and inequality is just a lot of left wing PC guilt squawking because according to cherry picked statistics there isn’t really any inequality or poverty. Cue a rousing round of ‘we don’t know...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • National breaks promise to insulate every state house
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: National breaks promise to insulate every state house Thursday, 10 Jul 2014 | Press Release “It’s not just a broken promise, it’s poor economics.” National has broken its promise to insulate every...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • “World Class Welfare System” My Arse. Come Clean Nathan Guy!
    Pigs are not safe in New Zealand. How many farms do activists have to film before the Ministry of Primary Industries comes clean and admits their accreditation scheme is an absolute failure? Do activists need to do the job of...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Tania Billingsley – hero
    The astounding courage exhibited by Tania Billingsley last night on 3rd Degree should put the Government to shame. Her criticism of those charged with upholding her rights is to the bone and righteous… The woman at the centre of a...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • McCully should stand down while review considers his actions
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: McCully should stand down while review considers his actions Thursday, 10 Jul 2014 | Press Release Mr McCully would never have considered a TV apology good enough for the Prime Minister and...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, why I love John ...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • If Oprah had been the ref for the Brazil-Germany game
    If Oprah had been the ref for the Brazil-Germany game...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto
    MIL OSI – Source: Mana Movement – Headline: No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto  Posted on July 10, 2014 by admin in John Minto, Press Releases“Labour’s education policy announcements last weekend have several welcome features which...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • 7 reasons why online voting isn’t a solution
    Online voting is being waved around again as a means to increase participation.  Here are the 7 reasons why I think online voting is a bad idea. 1 – 21% of those asked why theory didn’t vote in 2011 gave ‘didn’t...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Greg Presland – National and Pacifica
    John Key and National have recently been claiming that Pacifica are leaving Labour en masse and are heading towards National.  I am sorry John but there is no chance of this happening.  But Key and co have been able to get the...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Police sweeping domestic violence under the carpet?
    Pressure to lower stats – MPPolice were under government orders to “minimise” the number of domestic violence charges they lay to make crime statistics look good, Labour MP Andrew Little claimed yesterday. This latest allegation of Police downplaying domestic violence...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Invite: AGM & Political Forum
    MIL OSI – Source: Child Poverty Action Group – Headline: Invite: AGM & Political ForumCPAG AGM & Election Year Political Forum 08 July 2014 When: Wednesday 30 July Where: St Columba Centre, 40 Vermont St, Ponsonby, Auckland RSVP here! Please...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Housing figures National’s shame
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Housing figures National’s shame Monday, 07 Jul 2014 | Press Release “These figures are a shame on the Government. All New Zealanders deserve secure housing, whether renting or owning.” The number of...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • QV figures show two-track housing market
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: QV figures show two-track housing market The two-track housing market that has developed under National is underlined in QV’s latest report, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “QV’s index shows many homeowners...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • GUEST POST: Michael Wood – Just Structures
    The headline number at this weekend’s Labour Congress was a very good speech from David Cunliffe, the centre-piece of which was the well-received announcement on class sizes. The Congress ended on a high note, with delegates energised and positive media...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Cunliffe vs Key
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • A letter to Hekia
    A letter to Hekia...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Animal abuse unacceptable for pigs and consumers
    I was a kid on pig farms in the 1970s. Piglets were castrated using a scalpel without anaesthetic, wire cutters were used to trim their teeth and cut off their tails. Wire was forced through their sensitive snouts. Row upon...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • A better Canterbury and a better NZ
    Labour’s first 100 days is going to be a busy time – we’ve got a lot to change!  Kick-starting the Canterbury recovery is going to be a crucial part of those first 100 days.  Labour has announced several Canterbury specific...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Dear Leader loves you! Our cult of no personality
    .   The Cult of Dear Leader . It was inevitable. The poll-rated ‘popularity’ of Prime Minister has evolved into a full-blown, carefully-choreographed, Cult of Personality the likes of which this country has never before seen. The recent National Party...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs
    MIL OSI – Source: CTU – Headline: Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs “The effects on families of the global financial crisis, lack of adjustment of the accommodation supplement and high housing costs show...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Low income families hit hard
    MIL OSI – Source: Unite Union – Headline: Low income families hit hard Council of Trade Unions – Media Release Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs “The effects on families of the global financial...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high There’s no cause for celebration with the latest Household Incomes Report showing the number of children living in severe poverty has reached its...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Government in denial over income inequality
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Government in denial over income inequality Today’s Household Incomes Report from MSD underscores National’s continued failure to recognise inequality is a problem and is getting worse, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says....
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes National’s decision to cut nearly $2.5 million from adult and community education in Canterbury over the past five years was short-sighted and Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis Tuesday, 08 Jul 2014 | Press Release The latest Household Incomes Survey shows income inequality widening further under National, but that it is...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour Labour has been very clear that it is necessary to review and evaluate the effectiveness of Whanau Ora for Māori, says Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy?
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy? Another significant shortfall in the Government’s books suggests the economic recovery may have already passed most New Zealanders by, Labour’ Finance spokesperson David Parker says....
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • NZ Police to spy on people in pubs? We like our fascism casual thanks
    Ummmm. What? Undercover cops to ‘spy’ on bar patronsAn ”outrageous” initiative will see undercover police officers ”spying on patrons”, Hospitality Association chief executive Bruce Robertson says. Southern district police last month began stationing plain-clothes officers in licensed premises to ensure...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • The Return of the Worm : Introducing The NZ Election Reactor
    Scoop Independent News has formed a partnership with leading polling company, Roy Morgan Research, to bring the original Worm back for the NZ 2014 Election....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Brazilian tourist behind bars for cocaine smuggling
    A 20-year-old Brazilian tourist will not see much of New Zealand, after being sentenced to five years’ imprisonment in the Manukau District Court today for trying to smuggle around $656,000 of cocaine into the country. He will be deported after...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Naenae College to benefit from ACC’s Mates and Dates pilot
    National Candidates Lewis Holden and Chris Bishop welcome the news that local students at Naenae College will directly benefit from being involved in ACC’s Mates and Dates pilot programme against sexual violence....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Mr Ismail’s bail conditions
    Mr Ismail was required by the Court to surrender his passport by 5.00 pm on 12 May. By this time, Police had been able to confirm with MFAT that he had diplomatic immunity and therefore the bail conditions were unenforceable....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • What Stops People Moving Out of Poverty
    Speaking For Ourselves is the title of a new report drawn from ground-breaking research that follows 100 families for one year. The families are long-term users of the Auckland City Mission’s food bank and have contributed their experience of what...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Police continue to build pressure on the Headhunters Gang
    Three patched Head Hunter Outlaw Motorcycle Gang (OMCG) members and an associate have been found guilty of conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery following the conclusion of a successful Police covert operation....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • The Nation 12,13 July: Poverty, Offshore Drilling, Regions
    Then as it tries to balance environmental concerns with jobs, Labour energy spokesperson David Shearer reveals his party’s new policy on offshore drilling....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Sexual and reproductive health in the Pacific
    Today on World Population Day, the New Zealand Parliamentarians Group on Population and Development (NZPPD) calls on governments in the Pacific to urgently invest in sexual and reproductive health, particularly family planning, to improve the choices...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Its the economy stupid
    A poll being conducted on the Massey Birdwood Settlers website asks the question - Its Election Year - what will you base your vote on?...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Global Thinking Needed to Spark New Zealand’s Digital Future
    Giving Kiwi digital innovators the tools to help them think globally from day one is how New Zealand will become world-leader in the digital economy, says the Internet Party....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Seafood Industry Strongly Opposed to CRP Mining Application
    The seafood industry strongly opposes Chatham Rock Phosphate’s application to mine the Chatham Rise, saying it will have “significant and irreversible adverse effects on the marine environment.” In its submission to the Environmental Protection...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Māori Parenting Course already a hit
    Social Development Minister Paula Bennett has commended programmes that rise up out of the community that work ‘with’ families, as opposed to interventions that do things ‘to’ families. She was speaking as guest of honour at the recent launch...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Royal visit no king hit
    Support for a Kiwi Head of State is still high after April's royal tour....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Captioning to give hard of hearing community greater access
    New Zealand political programmes on TV will soon be accessible to the Deaf and hard of hearing community. Able is pleased to announce that from Wednesday 23rd July, it will be providing closed captions for TV ONE’s Q+A, TV3’s 3rd...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Conservatives Law and Order Policy Based on Mythology
    “The Conservative Party’s Law and Order current slogan ‘Stand for Something’ should be changed to ‘Stand for Anything’ says Kim Workman, Rethinking Crime and Punishment, in its latest ‘Smart on Crime’ blog....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Billingsley reminds us that sexual abuse can be prevented
    Tania Billingsley’s choice to have name suppression lifted and to talk about the wider issue of rape culture that facilitated her assault has highlighted the prevalence of sexual violence in New Zealand and reminds us that it can be prevented....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • 90 jobs lost in the Waikato as NZ Post closes mail centre
    New Zealand Post has confirmed that 90 jobs will be lost when it closes its Waikato mail processing centre. The confirmation comes after NZ Post announced in June last year that it would be closing its Waikato, Wellington and Dunedin...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Award for excellence in International Development journalism
    VSA is proud to launch its award for excellence in International Development journalism. VSA is New Zealand’s largest and most experienced volunteer agency working in International Development....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Marchers Keep Maui’s to the fore
    After successful marches around the country, Maui’s dolphin campaigners continue their pressure on the Government with a march to John Key’s electorate office in Kumeu on Sunday 13 July at 10am, leaving from the Kumeu Arts Centre at 10.30, 300...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • ESC announcement ‘shamefully late’, says safety campaigner
    The government announcement that Electronic Stability Control will become compulsory on new vehicles is effectively locking the stable door after the horse has bolted, says the car review website dogandlemon.com. Electronic Stability Control detects...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Susan Devoy urges New Zealanders to stand up for the refugee
    Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy urges New Zealanders to stand up for the refugee. “Let’s replace the barbed wire of refugee camps with our own No. 8 wire mentality. Let’s be there for some of our planet’s most vulnerable...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Internet Party Wades in to Fix Sick Waterways
    New Zealand’s waterways will be cleaned up and much higher standards set on water quality in a 10-year plan to be introduced by the Internet Party by 2016....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Time for Kiwis to start punching above weight in Humanity
    Acknowledgments and warm greetings to you all. I would especially like to welcome the relatively new representative from the UNHRC Thomas Albrecht..welcome to our part of the world, the Deputy CE for Immigration Nigel Bickle and the Ian Axford...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • SSC Releases Performance Improvement Framework (PIF) Reports
    The Performance Improvement Framework (PIF) reviews released by State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie today include the full reviews of the Department of Conservation (DOC) and the Treasury....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Will new farming leader jeopardise NZ’s GE-free advantage?
    The recent election of William Rolleston as president of Federated Farmers could mean a push towards genetic engineering (GE) in farming, warns the Soil & Health Association. Dr Rolleston has for many years been a proponent of GE, and some...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • President of PGA to attend Workshop for Arms Trade Treaty
    Labour’s Associate Disarmament Spokesperson and Parliamentians for Global Action (PGA) President Ross Robertson will be attending a Workshop next week in Siem Reap, Cambodia, to promote signature and ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT)....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Calls for Government Intervention Premature But Inevitable
    The Taxpayers’ Union is reacting to calls for a Crown Manager to be appointed to shepherd Auckland Council through its budget crisis, with disappointment. Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Seeking Sanctuary
    What would you do if you were forced to flee your home because of war or persecution?...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Entrenched child poverty no cause for celebration
    Child Poverty Action Group says high child poverty rates have become normalised and New Zealand's poorest children should expect a far greater level of ambition for their well-being....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Cyclists want answers from political parties
    Cyclists are calling for better protection, following the Coroner's inquest into the death of Jane Farrelly, held in Hamilton this week. Mrs Farrelly was killed after being struck by a truck near Taupo on March 16 last year....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Malaysian embassy employee
    Police are continuing to support Tania who has recently applied to the court to vary the automatic name suppression given to her based on the charges involved. Police did not oppose this course of action as we wanted to support...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Christchurch Chep workers strike for national pay parity
    Workers at the Chep pallet plant in Christchurch are going on strike on Thursday 10 July, demanding pay parity with Chep’s Wiri pallet plant in Auckland, according to FIRST Union, the union for workers in the transport and logistics sector....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Margaret Mahy boat unveiled on anniversary of ship bombing
    Greenpeace is naming a new boat after one of New Zealand’s best known children’s authors, Margaret Mahy, at a ceremony today on the 29th anniversary of the Rainbow Warrior bombing in Auckland harbour....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • ACC announces schools in sexual violence prevention pilot
    ACC has announced the nine secondary schools and facilitators who will pilot its new sexual and dating violence prevention programme....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • PISA results shed the spotlight on financial literacy levels
    PISA financial literacy results shed the spotlight on financial literacy levels for young New Zealanders...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • NZPI urges Government to consider planning principles
    The New Zealand Planning Institute (NZPI) is urging the Government to consider a suite of NZPI-developed guiding principles on freshwater quality issues when it implements its upcoming freshwater reforms....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Labour Party Policy a Mixed Bag
    The Insurance Council of New Zealand (ICNZ) would welcome any review of insurers’ response to the Canterbury earthquakes, rejects the Labour Party’s proposal for another regulator of the industry and supports its policy of transferring levies...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
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