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Second class citizens. Beggars belief

Written By: - Date published: 9:49 am, April 29th, 2014 - 58 comments
Categories: auckland supercity, class war, Metiria Turei, poverty, uncategorized, unemployment - Tags:

Out of sight-out of mind seems to be the logic of Auckland City’s bylaw to come into effect next month, to outlaw begging on the streets. The clear message from Native Affairs report, ‘Walk on By‘, last night, is that the bylaw is the result of pressure from the comfortable middle classes.  The supporters of the bylaw are motivated by their own beliefs or myths about begging, and claim they need to be “protected” from harassment by, (allegedly) dangerous and threatening beggars.

begging

As reported on Native Affairs the bylaw states:

A person must not use a public place to beg, or ask for money, food, or other items for personal use. Or solicit donations in a matter [sic] that may intimidate or cause a nuisance to any person.

It is punishable by a $500 fine.

There are no statistics or hard data that support the need for the bylaw: just anecdotal evidence from those who don’t like having beggars on the streets. As the Native Affairs journalist stated,

It’s rare to be accosted let alone pressured by them.

That’s my experience. In West Auckland I have on occasions been asked for money, but never harassed, threatened or intimidated. The people begging have always been polite and pleasant in manner.

Auckland Council spokesman, Callum Penrose from the Auckland Council Regulatory and Bylaws Committee could only cite complaints from members of the public as evidence. And he clearly saw the issue from the perspective of those who complained. He had no empathy for, or concern about, the people begging, and was struggling to support the reasons for the bylaw with any significant evidence.

When asked what is being done to help people in poverty who are begging, he claimed the help was available from the police and through the court system and community groups. He also tended to dismiss the idea that people were unable to find work. He said businesses claimed they were unable to find people for some jobs, so people needed to look at the bigger picture. Indeed!

The spokesperson from Auckland Action Against Poverty, Alistair Russell, said the bylaw was an over-reaction.

It’s a lack of choice that drives people to begging. To single out a subset of society and to say that they don’t have the right to be on the streets, is an indication of a society that is, ah, that is in itself sick. Those people who are in a situation where they are begging are simply a very small minority of a large number of people in poverty.

AAAP protest

One guy on the street was asked, “Why do you beg?

Ah to get food. Just a little. Yeah. Food clothing. Cos I can’t get me a job, eh bro?

The journalist reported that Green co-leader, Metiria Turei had said that,

Police already have the powers to deal with beggars who intimidate or are aggressive.

Turei stated that:

But to have a by law to move people off the street just because it’s unsavoury for some businesses. It’s not good enough. We are a first world modern and compassionate country. We don’t treat our citizens like that. We shouldn’t.

Alistair Russell, Turei and the Native Affairs’ journalist were talking from a totally different perspective from Penrose (the Council spokesperson). They talked about the people begging and people in poverty in a way that affirmed them as citizen: first class citizens with equal rights and as legitimate needs and desires as those who wanted beggars off the streets. Those presenting arguments in favour of the anti-begging bylaw, clearly talked about people who beg as though they are second class citizens.

The journalist concluded that,

People who beg are often among society’s most vulnerable. Trapped in poverty addiction and deprivation.

Penrose claimed that there needs to be a culture change.  I agree. But his idea of culture change refers the idea of some that it is the beggars who need to change their “culture”.   It is the (too wide spread) culture of poverty denial and blaming those in poverty for their circumstances that needs to change.  Pushing beggars off the streets will not help bring about such a culture change.  It is a return to 19th century Victorian values.

beggar-dog

[Update] The bylaw only says it’s an offence where begging causes a nuisance]

Beginning on page 6, it says:

Nuisances, safety and behaviour in any public place

(1) A person must not use a public place to:

[...]

(f) beg, in a manner that may intimidate or cause a nuisance to any person;

Unfortunately, though, it is open to interpretation as to what sort of behaviour causes a nuisance or intimidates another person.

58 comments on “Second class citizens. Beggars belief”

  1. Bill 1

    What happens when you can’t pay the $500 fine?

    If that can lead to jail time, then we are looking at the first stages of a regime intended to make money from the poor by jailing them in (necessary from the perspective of that right wing ideology) profit generating private prisons.

  2. Tautoko Viper 2

    “On The Turning Away” Pink Floyd

    On the turning away
    From the pale and downtrodden
    And the words they say
    Which we won’t understand
    “Don’t accept that what’s happening
    Is just a case of others’ suffering
    Or you’ll find that you’re joining in
    The turning away

    • blue leopard 2.1

      That was the very first song that came to mind for me too, Tautoko Viper,
      I was going to post the lyrics and see you already have! Good one!

      I shall continue along your line with the final verse:

      No more turning away
      From the weak and the weary
      No more turning away
      From the coldness inside
      Just a world that we all must share
      It’s not enough just to stand and stare
      Is it only a dream that there’ll be
      No more turning away?

    • Macro 2.3

      I’ve been wondering which rock star represented our economy. Now I know.

  3. just saying 3

    It’s a sin that somehow
    Light is changing to shadow
    And casting it’s shroud
    Over all we have known
    Unaware how the ranks have grown
    Driven on by a heart of stone
    We could find that we’re all alone
    In the dream of the proud

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojf18wT_Xtk

  4. TeWhareWhero 4

    If it does result in more people going to prison it makes perfect sense – if you are a neo-liberal:

    tax citizens heavily which makes them very aggrieved;
    use a compliant media to help you direct that anger towards the poor by labelling them as feral/feckless/anti-social/dysfunctional etc;
    increase the numbers of poor people going to prison and justify that by further appeals to their feral/feckless/anti-social/dysfunctional natures;
    allow corporations to build and run prisons to house these feral/feckless/anti-social/dysfunctional non-persons;
    use social capital to pay the corporations to house and control the increasing numbers of prisoners (a grossly disproportionate number of whom are young, male and have brown skins);
    allow other corporations to use prison labour at a couple of dollars an hour – thereby using social capital to pay the for workers’ subsistence which allows the corporations to extract an unnatural level of profit.

    What’s not to like about that scenario if you are a soulless money grubbing bastard?

  5. vto 5

    a $500 fine – ha ha ha ha that is very funny….

    … and is indicative of how removed from reality these rule-makers are.

  6. vto 6

    And we look down our noses when the Chinese forcibly remove their poor citizens for the Olympics..

    If you ever wanted evidence that people the world over are all exactly the same it is this. Everyone’s shit stinks the same.

  7. The Real Matthew 7

    So the middle class are “comfortable” are they? I’ve been reading left wing blog sites who have been telling us for the past 5 years that the middle class are being squeezed by current government policy.

    Back to the beggar by-law I think it’s ridiculous. I haven’t met a beggar yet whose been intimidating. Even if there was legitimate reason for this law (which there isn’t) surely we already have enough laws covering violence and abuse that could be used to deal with the (non-existant) problem.

    Rather than using the convenient excuse of “Middle New Zealand” the writer needs to start firing shots at Len Brown and the left wing Auckland Council for the absurd piece of legislation.

    • karol 7.1

      “Comfortable” middle classes was meant as a subset of the middle classes, not all middle class people. The middle class people most likely to feel the heat of the squeeze, and to feel most insecure, are the lower middle classes.

      Feeling the squeeze, doesn’t mean they are under as much pressure as those on the lowest incomes. Often the most insecure members of the middle classes are ones that put the boot into those in poverty – part of the fear of becoming poor.

      I think the right wingers in the council will be as likely to have supported this bylaw as any left wingers.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1.1

        Matthew has a point.

        A left-wing council would have a by-law along these lines:

        Poverty and hate speech are forms of violence. Accordingly, membership of the National Party will be punishable by a $500 fine.

        • left for dead 7.1.1.1

          Poverty and hate speech are forms of violence. Accordingly, membership of the National Party will be punishable by a $500 fine.
          OAB….$5,000.00 don’t you think.

      • Tiger Mountain 7.1.2

        “last place aversion” as it is sometimes described explains why the working poor and lower middle classes put the slipper into beneficiaries, and beggars, I have heard these comments made and usually challenge them.

        Oh the irony if the claim about “public complaints” re Auckland beggars is true. Working for Families–in work tax credit looks a hell of a lot like holding your hand out to me. Taxpayer money going to shore up employed people that should be organising and joining unions to obtain their own wage increases from employers. Even dependent contractors and all the others subject to employment rorts can get organised.

        I too do not feel threatened by beggars, the torys and their supporters are much more dangerous.

  8. Phil 8

    just anecdotal evidence from those who don’t like having beggars on the streets. As the Native Affairs journalist stated,

    It’s rare to be accosted let alone pressured by them.

    That’s my experience. In West Auckland I have on occasions been asked for money, but never harassed, threatened or intimidated.

    My initial reaction is that this is also my experience in Wellington… but my experience is as a 6’0” guy who is reasonably fit, extroverted, and walks down the street quickly.

    If I was old or frail or not comfortable in situations of conflict (in the broadest sense of the word) then I suspect that some of the interactions I’ve had with the homeless could be considered very frightening.

    • karol 8.1

      I’m a short woman in my mid 60s, with a minor physical disability that would make it hard for me to defend myself against an attack by most able bodied males, and a large number of young able bodied females. I do not feel physically threatened or intimidated by people begging in Auckland.

      • phillip ure 8.1.1

        i have never ever seen aggression/intimidation from anyone forced to beg…

        ..in auckland..

        ..this is a total small-minded/small-business beat-up…

        ..and so so cruel..to boot..

        • shorts 8.1.1.1

          I’ve not had any bad experiences from beggars either (not here in nz or anywhere I’ve travelled) my boss has on occasion, we’re based off K road in auckland, so there are a number of homeless and other interesting souls – in her case its been a couple of isolated incidences (over many years) and stupidity on the persons behalf as my boss is generous to them not in such a good place

  9. Draco T Bastard 9

    He said businesses claimed they were unable to find people for some jobs, so people needed to look at the bigger picture.

    There’s been a job advertised on Seek several times over the last few weeks. I’ve applied for it twice and haven’t been contacted once. It seems to me that many NZ businesses have far too tight a definition of who they want to employ. In other words, the ‘shortage’ is caused by the businesses and not the unemployed.

    It is a return to 19th century Victorian values.

    And if we keep on the neo-liberal path we’ll end up all the way back to feudalism.

    • MaxFletcher 9.1

      Or it could be they don’t consider you qualified?

      • Molly 9.1.1

        … or they are inefficient themselves…

        In this time of digital technology, it takes very little time and skill to post off a generic “Thank you for your application – unfortunately…”

        Some businesses show the level of their competence right from the word go – or SEEK.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.1.2

        Oh, I’m qualified. Got the full range of experience that they’re asking for in the ad and then some. As I said, they appear to have a too tight a definition of what they want causing them to bypass suitable people causing a shortage that’s not actually there.

  10. that is a great bit of journalism..

    ..detailing a new low point for this mayor..who in his first camapaign promised to help the homeless/street-people..

    ..since then he has done nothing for them..

    ..and now this..

    ..and could that council-person..callum.. be more odious/uncaring..?

    ..could he be more of a neo-lib toad..?

    ..and metiria turei was good..

    ..ahe was natural/real..and not that serially-smiling at nothing media persona she usually affects..

    ..she is much more effective when she is being herself..

    ..as she is in this piece..

    ..this is a fucken disgusting piece of local body law..

    ..and a nadir in our treatment of the most vulnerable..

    ..and thanks to native affairs..for highlighting this..

  11. joe90 11

    The supporters of the bylaw are motivated by their own beliefs or myths about begging, and claim they need to be “protected” from harassment by, (allegedly) dangerous and threatening beggars.

    6 – derives from individual or social frustration.

    That is why one of the most typical features of the historical fa**ism was the appeal to a frustrated middle class, a class suffering from an economic crisis or feelings of political humiliation, and frightened by the pressure of lower social groups. In our time, when the old “proletarians” are becoming petty bourgeois (and the lumpen are largely excluded from the political scene), the fascism of tomorrow will find its audience in this new majority.

    http://www.themodernword.com/eco/eco_blackshirt.html

  12. David 12

    Dumb bylaw. If you want beggars of the street in the short term you need to get them food/clothing/shelter/treatment and set them up with training for employment. Anything else is just “ambulance at the bottom of the cliff” stuff (or in this case “stick at the bottom of the cliff”). A long term solution for government and councils is actually implementing a full-employment program.

  13. In theory, we have a social welfare system to ensure no-one has to beg on the streets. In practice, we have beggars on the streets. So, is there something up with the social welfare system, or something up with the homeless? Most likely, both – certainly we seem to be have developed a large number of people lacking even the slightest sense of self-respect – but this doesn’t seem like a useful approach to addressing either question.

  14. ejabtree 14

    In the video it says Onehunga Business Assc. Made a submission with no evidence saying there were intimidating beggar incidents every few days. The “every few days” part is just a plain lie. Then the guy from Auckland Council says go to suburban strip malls and find out how safe people feel. I’ve walked Onehunga mall area many times, daily, and people do feel safe. Outside Onehunga countdown you often get buskers and occasional beggars, and everyone coming and leaving the supermarket knows the deal. Some of those simply asking for funds are familiar and they can get a little boisterous if they’ve been drinking, but intimidating? No. Just last week there was a guy sitting outside Onehunga WINZ office and he asked two people walking past. They both declined and he said “Have a nice day,” in reply. Another was commenting to a friend that a woman had just bought him breakfast. She must have been terrified. One of the defining features of Onehunga is it’s inclusive street community. That casual community is pressured by the gentry that the surrounding areas has attracted. Like any other town there are places you wouldn’t wander around in with dollar bills pinned to your shirt, but what’s new?

    Out west, Pioneer place, and outside Kmart, sometimes even on the township main street, you’ll run into a couple of familiar faces keeping on keeping on. Polite, casual, not at all intimidating. Once again, certain places you don’t want to be hanging around after dark, or drunk, but same as anywhere. In Auckland town down area, by the ferry building, around Albert street, Queen street near immigration offices – especially unassuming there – K Road near St. Kevins arcade and nearer to the graveyard, are all places you’ll find people on the street. Around St. Kevin’s is an example of how two different areas of Auckland CBD, close up against each other, deal with people differently. People can get a little pushy/shouty around Symonds St/Grafton area, but you’d have to be returning the verbal stuff for it to get “intimidating”. It could even be put down to the chance events of real life. What do these intimidated people want – an air conditioned natural environment that approximates an office cubicle or BMW interior 24/7, no surprises, nothing off schedule?? Intimidation is subjective. Nice white folks are easily intimidated. Real life, where the basics are sometimes a challenge to acquire, often results in exasperation that nice folks find “intimidating”.

    I wish it was plain fear of being poor that makes certain types hate the poor close to them. Unfortunately, it’s something else. Our dominant (post?) colonial culture (still) encourages leverage off anything less powerful: children, immigrants, tenants, beneficiaries, beggars, the long-term sick, the disabled, anyone “lesser” in social status will do. It’s a snapshot of the sickness in society that’s been with us since the first pakeha turned up trying to escape the same thing in the country they left. The bigger picture? Privatised welfare. Nineteenth century workhouse attitudes, without the work houses, government pays privates to profit off the poor. It’s all part of the dream most of us live in. Reject the system and the dream, as much as you can, and these laws will have little to stick to.

    • greywarbler 14.1

      I try to have some money for buskers. They are singing the dreams and thoughts of the intelligent, sensitive humans we purport to be. They bring their talents and sing and play and add richness to our routine lives a little from their store of creative skill which is their richness. Probably they don’t have lots of money so it’s a good exchange. And they can touch your soul if you still have one.

  15. Johnm 15

    As reported on Native Affairs the bylaw states:
    A person must not use a public place to beg, or ask for money, food, or other items for personal use. Or solicit donations in a matter [sic] that may intimidate or cause a nuisance to any person.

    Either Native Affairs or the bylaw has this wrong: “matter” should read manner!

    We continue to copy the scum bag hell hole for the poor the U$. Over there it’s illegal to feed people on the street as in a soup kitchen. NeoLiberalism long ago destroyed any decent christian principles replaced by the worship of money and wealth, the same has happened here headed by our heartless, soulless money zombie Key.

    I’ve found beggars I’ve met to be just ordinary people.

    Compare and contrast the fawning sychophancy we paid for given to the pampered poodles of pom royalty! Sickening!

    • karol 15.1

      I’m sure the “matter” was a mis-speak by the Native Affairs reporter – is why I put “[sic]. It was a quote from her that I listened to twice just to check. I’m sure she meant “manner”.

      • Johnm 15.1.1

        Hi karol
        I listened to the video she said manner not matter. That’s ok just a typo. :-)

    • dv 15.2

      ‘As reported on Native Affairs the bylaw states:
      A person must not use a public place to beg, or ask for money, food, or other items for personal use. Or solicit donations in a matter [sic] that may intimidate or cause a nuisance to any person.

      Then how do I deal with my teen age children then in the street?

      • greywarbler 15.2.1

        Good point dv And don’t tell the sparrows, they’re always on the street looking for food. In Kaikoura they warn you against waving food around when sitting outside or a seagull might swoop and take it off your hands. But these peasants are revolting. Nobody should do anything for anybody, then there is no need for shame or guilt or concern – Just a shrug and a ‘Well that’s how it is. I didn’t write the law.’

  16. Colonial Viper 16

    So, did Len Brown vote for this shiny new by-law?

    It seem so hard for the power elite and their well paid professional lackeys to face up to the kind of unequal society they are creating.

  17. One Anonymous Bloke 17

    Of course it’s intimidating to see people begging. The subliminal message is “that could be me” – insufficient employment is cited by about 30% of US participants in one survey, and while it is certainly not the only reason, it’s quite clear that few are truly insulated from the possibility of homelessness and crushing poverty.

    And that’s before we get to the consequences of flooding under a National government that thinks the market will provide.

    People don’t like to be reminded that their lives are fragile and precarious. Far easier to vilify, dehumanise, treat people as sub-citizens, then move them on. And SERCO is waiting.

    Then again we could always elect a competent government instead, and then SERCO can be served with an eviction notice.

  18. Mary 18

    If the bylaw does say exactly how it is quoted above then this is a worry because it purports to outlaw begging regardless of whether it’s a “nuisance”: “A person must not use a public place to beg, or ask for money, food, or other items for personal use. Or solicit donations in a matter [sic] that may intimidate or cause a nuisance to any person.” The first sentence says no begging full stop.

    But the bylaw doesn’t say that. It’s worded in a way that requires there to also be a “nuisance” so your average beggar sitting on the edge of the pavement with a bowl and a sign should be fine. I think if the bylaw were worded as quoted above there’d be a strong argument to have it declared bad in terms of the NZBORA. You just couldn’t justify banning someone sitting quietly with a bowl and sign.

    However, problems will start when shopkeepers and others try to say that a person sitting on the pavement outside their shop is a “nuisance”. The bylaw needed to be aimed at some kind of real problem in order to at least have some chance of withstanding a NZBORA challenge, but the intention will be to try to use it along the lines of what’s written above, that all begging is banned. Arguments will be about whether someone sitting with a bowl and a sign can be a “nuisance”. The civil liberties lawyers need to get ready to nip in the bud the inevitable abuse of the bylaw that will no doubt start happening pretty quickly.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1

      The civil liberties lawyers Police need to get ready to nip in the bud the inevitable abuse of the bylaw that will no doubt start happening pretty quickly.

      FIFY :)

      • Mary 18.1.1

        Thanks. I thought there was something missing. Couldn’t quite work out what.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1.1.1

          I hope I’m not being hopelessly naive, and I expect those civil liberties lawyers you mentioned (and the court) will be watching with interest if the police don’t step up.

          • Mary 18.1.1.1.1

            Yes, it will be up to the cops to know what the bylaw actually says and that they can’t just act on the direction of some self-declared defender of the rights of the respectable who decides they feel intimidated by the sight of a bowl and a sign. The test must surely be an objective one and not merely based on the belief of those who say they’re “intimidated”. I’m sure the council, though, are counting on a misapplication of the bylaw to clean up their town. That’s what the wording of it looks like to me.

    • karol 18.2

      Thanks, Mary. You are correct. It says, begging page 6:

      Nuisances, safety and behaviour in any public place

      (1) A person must not use a public place to:

      (a) wilfully obstruct, disturb or interfere with any other person in their use or enjoyment of that public place;

      (b) or create a nuisance through the use or playing of any instrument (musical or otherwise), any type of public address system or any type of amplified sound system, or from making any excessive sound or noise;

      (c) use any material or thing (including a vehicle, bicycle, motorised scooter, model aircraft, skateboard, roller skates or roller blades, shopping trolley or similar object) recklessly or in a manner which may intimidate, be dangerous, be injurious to or cause a nuisance to any person;

      (d) install or maintain a fence (including a razor-wire and electric fence) in a manner that may cause an injury or nuisance to any person;

      (e) consume, inject or inhale or distribute or offer for sale any mind-altering substance;

      (f) beg, in a manner that may intimidate or cause a nuisance to any person;

      (g) wash or offer to wash a vehicle or any part thereof, in a manner that may be unsafe or intimidate or cause a nuisance to any person, or cause an obstruction to traffic.

      Will add to the post.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 18.2.1

        A person must not use a public place to:

        (a) wilfully obstruct, disturb or interfere with any other person in their use or enjoyment of that public place;

        Well that’s all billboards and advertising gone by lunchtime.

        Who could disagree with that?

        Seriously, are you Jaffas all just going to lie down for this shit?

        • karol 18.2.1.1

          Actually, I was also thinking that part of the bylaw could be applied to people using a public space for begging – they should not be obstructed, disturbed or interfered with.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 18.2.1.1.1

            Oh I like that :)

            They should be defended, because if the Left doesn’t exist to protect the weak from the strong what good are we?

            Solidarity.

  19. captain hook 19

    so tell me nows so I can understand. how does a pennyless beggar pay a fine?

  20. greywarbler 20

    This video below is the result of some aggressive citizen deciding that public space should be limited to only certain members of the public. And then harrassing and blocking the way of an innocent citizen. This man will bend the truth in attempting to win support and agreement from others in his denial of rights to the other. The high handed arrogance of it is breathtaking.

    And the anti-begging by law. Forbidding people to ask for anything on the street is wrong. There must be some control that can be resorted to in extreme circumstances, but it should be rare and limited action. A mediated approach should be the preference.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEKhgBye5K0
    (Youtube Not a pleasant ride home.)

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    Cut your hair | 14-09
  • Cabinet said no?
    Election Day -5Listening Greenwald on RNZ now saying the NSA(US) used GSCB(NZ) supplied bulk data.  Says Snowden was processing metadata - via xkeyscore - sent from NZ to the US.  Was this data of NZers trawled by GCSB? Ryan:  "On...
    Tumeke | 14-09
  • Keeping up with the rapid story of Glenn Greenwald & NZ spying
    It's going to be difficult for all the claims made by Glenn Greenwald to be properly reported, checked and debated in just the five days before the election, but New Zealand journalists are having a pretty good crack at it....
    Pundit | 14-09
  • Some questions for the PM
    I’m struggling to find the provisions in NZ’s policy about the classification of documents that allow the PM to declassify documents for the purpose of protecting his reputation (his word, not mine, on Morning Report this morning). Perhaps the PM...
    Media Law Journal | 14-09
  • Will Key resign after the Moment of Truth?
    You might recall that around this time last year the National party, along with tobacco lobbyist Peter Dunne and the convicted criminal John Banks, changed the Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003 (PDF) so it was retrospectively legal to spy...
    The Jackal | 14-09
  • Speaker: 1600 beneficiaries moving into work each week? When a lot is not a...
    In recent weeks the Prime Minister and other Government Ministers have been fond of claiming that 1,600 beneficiaries are leaving the benefit and going into jobs every week (see for example National’s election policy statement). It’s an impressive sounding claim....
    Public Address | 14-09
  • An uphill battle
    We always knew Ilam was going to be an uphill battle. But we didn’t think we’ve have to spend so much time battling the Press, as well as the sitting MP. At the weekend, the Press provided comprehensive coverage of the...
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 14-09
  • The Dotcom/Greenwald/GCSB revelations
    Tonight at 7pm we will finally see the long-awaited, much-hyped Kim Dotcom bombshell. Its contents have been teased by journalist Glenn Greenwald over the weekend, and many are pointing with glee at John Key’s statements from a year ago: Prime Minister...
    Boots Theory | 14-09
  • Vote Choice: The Final Round-Up
    To round off our Vote Choice series, this week we profile the remaining party leaders; a veritable mix bag regarding their position on abortion ranging from the Green’s recent policy on decriminalisation to the not-quite-sure to the status quo –...
    ALRANZ | 14-09
  • Laundry Time: Dirty Politics Update
    Back in Mid-August, Colmar Brunton carried out a Snap Poll to gauge the public's immediate reaction to Nicky Hager's revelations in Dirty Politics. Conducted over the two days immediately following Hager's eagerly-awaited book launch, this Snap Poll of 500 respondents would have...
    Sub zero politics | 14-09
  • Can’t See the Wood for the Trees
    Right, so let me get this straight.The latest Colmar Brunton has National plunging 4 percentage points, with the Right Bloc (excluding Colin Craig's Conservatives) down by 2.At the same time, while Labour is mildly down (1 point), the Left Bloc...
    Sub zero politics | 14-09
  • What to do with the Central Wharves
    The Downtown Framework (18MB) was released last week and one of the interesting set of challenges to deal with is the Central Wharves. These are the finger wharves spread out across the core of the CBD from Princes Wharf in the...
    Transport Blog | 14-09
  • John Key’s Top 69 Lies: Today no. 5 They’re all wrong about the...
     John Key defends the GCSB bill  John Campbell: Are you saying Sir Bruce Fergusson, Sir Geoffrey Palmer and the Law Society and the Privacy Commissioner and the Human Rights Commission are all wrong? John Key: Yep. John Campbell: And Anne...
    Arch Rival | 14-09
  • Britain – doomed?
    No, not because the unruly Scots won't learn to behave, but because useless Tories are in charge. Trade deficits are running at near record levels and this is not a good thing.With the trade deficit widening, growth slowing, and unemployment...
    Left hand palm | 14-09
  • Am I turning Tory?
    Either I'm becoming old and conservative, or Peter Hitchens is starting to become less deranged, or something like that.No matter.  In a shocking development, the Mail has actually printed a referendum story that isn't actually anti-independence. Further portents of the...
    Left hand palm | 14-09
  • Greenwald vs Key
    Originally posted on The Dim-Post:The ‘Moment of Truth’ is tonight. Greenwald will release his documents and then Key has announced that he’ll declassify documents disproving whatever it is that Greenwald proves. I found this timeline in the Dom-Post helpful: November...
    Politically Corrected | 14-09
  • Greenwald vs Key
    The ‘Moment of Truth’ is tonight. Greenwald will release his documents and then Key has announced that he’ll declassify documents disproving whatever it is that Greenwald proves. I found this timeline in the Dom-Post helpful: November 2011 – Two un-named...
    DimPost | 14-09
  • Greenwald vs Key
    The ‘Moment of Truth’ is tonight. Greenwald will release his documents and then Key has announced that he’ll declassify documents disproving whatever it is that Greenwald proves. I found this timeline in the Dom-Post helpful: November 2011 – Two un-named...
    DimPost | 14-09
  • Next 10 things for Business Growth Agenda
    Press Release – New Zealand National Party The National Party has today laid out the 10 highest priorities for its Business Growth Agenda over the next three years as it works to lift New Zealand’s long-term growth rate and create...
    Its our future | 14-09
  • Six days left to
    Spotted Alexandra Street, Hamilton...
    Politically Corrected | 14-09
  • Gordon Campbell on the Glenn Greenwald revelations
    All that hanging out with the All Blacks clearly hasn’t taught Prime Minister John Key a thing about the ethics of playing the ball, and not the man. Still, in slagging off Pulitzer Prize winning investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald as...
    Gordon Campbell | 14-09
  • Gordon Campbell on the Glenn Greenwald revelations
    Column – Gordon Campbell All that hanging out with the All Blacks clearly hasnt taught Prime Minister John Key a thing about the ethics of playing the ball, and not the man. Still, in slagging off Pulitzer Prize winning investigative...
    Its our future | 14-09
  • 2014 SkS Weekly Digest #37
    SkS Highlights 97 hours of consensus: caricatures and quotes from 97 scientists by John Cook attracted the most comments of the articles posted on SkS during the past week. In addition, the 97 Hours campaign was widely acclaimed and promoted by...
    Skeptical Science | 14-09
  • Not the Six O’clock News – Laila Harré talks with Glenn Greenw...
    ...
    The Jackal | 14-09
  • Is Whale Oil a journalist (3)?
    Yes. Yes, he is. The High Court says so, as Whale Oil points out triumphantly. Like the good journalist he is, he even shows us the evidence: para 145 of Justice Asher’s judgment. Mr Slater then goes on to demonstrate...
    Media Law Journal | 14-09
  • Lincoln Rd consultation feedback
    Between last November and February this year Auckland Transport ran consultation for a plan to further widen Lincoln Rd. It’s a road I’m particularly familiar with seeing as I use it regularly. The upgrade seeks to widen Lincoln Road to provide an...
    Transport Blog | 14-09
  • O Mary!
    U2 has been in the news lately … which reminded me of  Mary J Blige …...
    The Paepae | 14-09
  • You really should watch this interview with Glenn Greenwald, despite the sm...
    It’s easy to fall for a rapid PR ‘framing’ response, especially from an experienced spin team like Prime Minister John Key’s media machine. This comment seems a fair description of what happens: Mr Key has been very quick with the...
    The Paepae | 14-09
  • Vote Positive Bus at Ratana
    As the Big Red Labour bus drove through the small streets of Ratana (home of the Maori Ratana faith, a Maori church teaching Christian doctrine) the locals couldn’t have been more delighted.  We had finally arrived to meet up with...
    Labour campaign | 14-09
  • Get out and vote
    Seafarers Ben and Byron are voting in the General Election in September 2014 and having their say about the Government. To find out more about how you can vote or get your workmates, friends and family voting, visit the union...
    MUNZ | 14-09
  • Has Garth McVicar handed Napier to Labour?
    About a month ago, I predicted that Stuart Nash would win Napier with a majority of 3,000, almost reversing the existing 3,701 majority achieved by retiring National incumbent Chris Tremain. With regards to Garth McVicar throwing his hat in to...
    Occasionally erudite | 14-09
  • Something To Listen To As We Head For “The Moment Of Truth”
      ALREADY, the arrival of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Glenn Greenwald (a.k.a. "Kim Dotcom's little henchman") has afforded New Zealanders another disturbing glimpse of the man behind the Prime-Ministerial mask.  Even more will be revealed tomorrow at the Auckland Town Hall.  Doors open...
    Bowalley Road | 13-09
  • John Key’s Top 69 Lies: Today no. 6: I haven’t seen Ian Fletcher in...
    ...
    Arch Rival | 13-09
  • Poll of Polls update – 14 September 2014
    For some reason, Fairfax have delayed the release of their 11 September 2014 Ipsos poll to this morning (the Ipsos Polling Station on Stuff even calls it their “September 11 2014 Poll”). It’s almost standard these days to describe each new...
    Occasionally erudite | 13-09
  • Speaker: The End of Trust
    If there’s one thing I’ve learned reading the Dirty Politics book and associated stories, emails, blog posts, tweets and rants, it’s that I’ve got a thing or two to learn about PR.This worries me somewhat, because while I’ve only been...
    Public Address | 13-09
  • 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
  • Speech to Canterbury Chamber of Commerce
    Today I'm going to talk about our policy package to upgrade and grow our economy and how we turn that growth into a foundation for a decent and fair society. But first I want to address the issue of our...
    Labour | 01-09
  • Commission of Inquiry must have bipartisan support
    The Labour Party is drafting terms of reference for a Commission of Inquiry, Labour’s Shadow Attorney-General David Parker says. “It is abundantly clear there is a need for an independent Commission of Inquiry, chaired by a High Court Judge, into...
    Labour | 01-09
  • Rapid Transit to unclog Christchurch
    Labour will build a 21st century Rapid Transit system for Christchurch, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “The long delayed recovery of Christchurch hinges on a modern commuter system for the city. “We will invest $100 million in a modern rail plan...
    Labour | 31-08
  • Labour’s commitment to public broadcasting
    A Labour Government will set up a working group to re-establish a public service television station as part of our commitment to ensuring New Zealand has high quality free-to-air local content. “We will set up a working group to report...
    Labour | 31-08
  • A new deal for the conservation estate
    The health of our economy depends on New Zealand preserving and restoring our land, air, water and indigenous wildlife, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. Announcing Labours Conservation policy, she said that there will be a comprehensive plan to restore...
    Labour | 31-08
  • Labour’s plan to end homelessness
    Labour has a comprehensive approach to end homelessness starting with the provision of emergency housing for 1000 people each year and putting an end to slum conditions in boarding houses, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Labour believes that homelessness is not...
    Labour | 30-08
  • Labour: A smarter approach to justice
    A Labour Government will improve the justice system to ensure it achieves real public safety, provides equal access to justice and protects human rights, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. “Our approach is about tackling the root causes of crime, recognising...
    Labour | 29-08
  • Labour to foster Kiwi love of sport and the great outdoors
    A Labour Government will promote physical activity, back our top athletes and help foster Kiwis’ love of the great outdoors by upgrading tramping and camping facilities. Trevor Mallard today released Labour’s sports and recreation policy which will bring back a...
    Labour | 29-08
  • Pacific languages recognised under Labour
    Labour will act to recognise the five main Pacific languages in New Zealand including through the education system, said Pacific Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio. Announcing Labour’s Pacific Island policy he said that there must be a strong commitment to...
    Labour | 29-08
  • No healthy economy without a healthy environment
    Labour recognises that we cannot have a healthy economy without a healthy environment, says Environment spokesperson Moana Mackey announcing Labour’s environment policy. “New Zealand’s economy has been built on the back of the enormous environmental wealth we collectively enjoy as...
    Labour | 28-08
  • Better protection, fairer deal for Kiwi consumers
    Tackling excessive prices, ensuring consumers have enough information to make ethical choices and giving the Commerce Commission more teeth are highlights of Labour’s Consumer Rights policy. “The rising cost of living is a concern for thousands of Kiwi families. A...
    Labour | 28-08
  • Media Advisory – MANA Movement Candidate for Waiariki Annette Sykes, Waia...
    Media are advised that this coming weekend, the MANA Movement Candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes, will be on the Internet MANA Road Trip within the electorate of Waiariki. Speakers confirmed are Annette Sykes, Hone Harawira, John Minto, Laila Harre and Kim...
    Mana | 27-08
  • Internet MANA – Waiariki Road Trip: 29, 30, 31 Aug 2014
    The Internet MANA Road Trip hits Waiariki this weekend. It would be great if all MANA members in Waiariki could especially attend the public meetings and show their support for our Waiariki candidate Annette Sykes. Confirmed speakers Hone Harawira (except Taupo), Annette...
    Mana | 27-08
  • The email that proves Key is a liar
    This is the Email proving Key knew about Kim Dotcom before he claims he did… “We had a really good meeting with the Prime Minister. He’s a fan and we’re getting what we came for. Your groundwork in New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 15-09
  • Henchmen
    Henchmen...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • Why it simply isn’t credible that Key stepped in and shut down the mass s...
    Key’s staggering admission that yes there was a year long business model by the GCSB to mass spy on all of NZ but  that he stepped in and shut it down after Cabinet had signed it off just sounds like make...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • John Key’s love affair with a straw man
    Politicians like putting up straw men for the purpose of self-righteously knocking them over. Prime Minister John Key has a particular straw man he loves to punch over. He raises it whenever he’s asked about mass surveillance of New Zealanders...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • John Armstrong turns on Glenn Greenwald
    Where does a mediocre journalist like John Armstrong get off attacking a journalist with the credibility of Glenn Greenwald as he has in his ridiculous column today? Armstrong has the audacity to try and play the terrorism card to justify why...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Denis Tegg – Which of John Key’s many statements on the GC...
    We already have Glenn Greenwald’s assertion on The Nation that John Key has misled New Zealanders as to whether the GCSB has engaged in mass surveillance of Kiwis. But Key has made many other statements about the GCSB’s powers and...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • Election 2014: Numbers and Faces
    Democratic politics is a game of numbers and faces. How can we translate the numbers into the 120 or more faces that will be in the next Parliament? Below is my prediction of a likely result: 120 people, divided by...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • Scotland the brave
    The possibility that Scotland will vote for independence this Thursday has panicked the British establishment. An unholy alliance of Tory, Labour, Liberal and corporate leaders has resorted to fear-mongering and bullying on grand scale in a last ditch effort to...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • Why Key’s denials sound so off and why Dotcom’s fight is all our fight
    The shrillness of Key is the issue. His denials just too forced and rehearsed. Key has gone from Hollow Man to Shallow Man with his lashing out at Pulitzer Price winning Journalist Glenn Greenwald by calling him a ‘henchman’. This...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • 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 . Our...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • Letters to the Editor – Spies, Lies, Five Eyes, and other matters on a Su...
    . . 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 . Our...
    The Daily Blog | 14-09
  • As TDB predicted, Labour to use universal super fund to buy back assets and...
    Greens about to be snookered again?   As The Daily Blog has pointed out several times now, Labour will use a universal super fund to buy back NZs assets in a bid to offer Winston a legacy project… Labour plans...
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • A lesson in caring for our most vulnerable
    Some of the comments on this article make me sick. Because I am so very much over people who think they are better than others because things have gone their way in life and think those who aren’t as functional...
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – Please vote positive
    One of the features of campaigning is the meet-the-candidates event.  As an opportunity to present policies to the voter, they aren’t the best vehicle but still serve a useful purpose.  The problem is that there are too many candidates and...
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • For this who don’t vote this election
    For this who don’t vote this election...
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • Where does Key get off abusing a Pulitzer prize winning Journalist like Gle...
    We are seeing the Dirty Politics PM today when Key decided the best way to counter the Glenn Greenwald claims of GCSB mass surveillance was to denigrate Greenwald… Prime Minister John Key says he will prove Glenn Greenwald’s claims by the...
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • 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,...
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • Dear mainstream media – regarding Key’s promise to resign if GCSB expos...
    Dear Mainstream media. How’s it all going? I would like to acknowledge the deep depression many members of the Press Gallery are going through as their boy Key looks less and less likely to win. I appreciate how a loss...
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • 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....
    The Daily Blog | 13-09
  • ‘I’ll not be intimidated … by cowards’, says Fiji death threat jour...
    Fiji Sun’s Jyoti Pratibha … death threats via fake Facebook profiles. Image: Pacific Scoop THE PARIS-based media freedom advocacy organisation Reporters Sans Frontières and the Pacific Media Centre have condemned threats and intimidation against political reporters this week covering Fiji’s...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • Glenn Greenwald on TV3s ‘The Nation’ – Everyone remember when Key pro...
    Glenn Greenwald has just given his first NZ interview on TV3s ‘The Nation’ and what he had to say was incredibly damaging. Glenn is here for Kim Dotcom’s Moment of Truth on Monday and what he has just had to...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • What will soft National vote do, why Colin Craig will be a focus in final w...
    In what has been the most unpredictable elections of our time, the final week promises more shocks and bombshells than World War One trench warfare. We have the media who still have the Rawshark emails that detail the Ede-Slater exchanges....
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • Would a National-Conservative Party reduce rights to an abortion? Legalise ...
    With the possibility of a Conservative-National Party coalition looming, let’s consider the impact of this new hard right religious Government on social policy. We know Conservative Party candidate Edward Saafi, believes the inability to legally bash your kids is responsible for teenage prostitution, teenage pregnancy and...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • ACTs solution to crime – more guns?
    How insane are the ACT Party? Honestly? Their solution to crime is to arm every shop keeper with a sawn off shotgun??? “Criminals are well aware that shopkeepers are defenceless and are taking advantage of this in brutal robberies. What...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • John Key’s gift to teenage girls…
    Yesterday I was at the MANA Movement policy release on “Predators on Poverty” in the Otahuhu Shopping Centre. Successive Labour and National governments have left vulnerable communities on their own to face these merciless thieves who prey on the poor...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • Poverty denial – Where does National get its advice from?
    National is displaying a quite inadequate understanding of their own policies and worrying inability to respond to criticism. When John Key trots out his old, tired example of how ‘work pays’ on Morning Report this week to justify leaving 260,000...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • Education reformers mean well, so what’s the problem?
    The thing about education reformers is that, mostly, they mean well. Whether it’s charter schools, National Standards, Teach First, or another reform, many people involved have good intentions.  They want to improve things, try something new and innovate, they say. The thing...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • My brain hurts
    My brain hurts.  This election year has been a really long nine months.  The lies, the headlines, the spin, the policy, the chat, I am literally overloaded with information.  At times it’s been exhausting trying to keep up.  However I...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • Slater loses Blomfield defamation case – has to pays costs & must dis...
    Great victory for Journalism today. The Defamation case Matt Blomfield took against Slater has jumped its first hurdle, Slater has been told he might be a ‘Journalist’, but he has no right to journalistic protection of his sources because there was no...
    The Daily Blog | 12-09
  • Seeing an Economic Vision
    It has been some time since my last post to TDB. I was fortunate to recently come back to NZ briefly for a bit of a break from my work in Pakistan. While my visit was super short, I took...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • 5 reasons why anyone identifying as Left with a capital L should party vote...
    There are 5 reasons why anyone identifying as Left with a capital L should consider casting their party vote for Internet MANA this election. 1 – Feed the Kids: There is no excuses now that National have flirted with the idea...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • What I want from a change of government
    The prospects for a change of government look a little brighter so I though I’d look at what we can expect. The only option being provided by Labour, the main opposition party, is for a Labour, Green, NZ First coalition....
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • Why is the “Progressive” Coalition so Regressive?
    Have you ever, when parallel parking, got yourself wedged into the curb? The car in front is centimetres away and your rear wheel is touching the curb at an angle. This is a metaphor for the state of economic policy-making...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • Of course the Greens could work with National
    A warm soy latte with John Key?   Sharp in take of breath moment as TVNZ last night reported Greens could work with National post the election if National win. It’s a smart move. The Greens are so viciously anti-tribal...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Quality of Journalism
    “Skilled journos getting unwarranted shit from hack bloggers & online warriors could earn big $ in PR/marketing, so thank you for what you do”. As this tweet rolled across my screen this morning the irony had me rolling my eyes. Why on...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – #BlueGreen2014 – Or: The Media Jetskiis O...
    During Thursday’s iteration of One News, I was virtually shocked off my seat to hear a reasonably well-known political pundit slash nominal “journalist” prognosticating about the likelihood of the Green Party “switching gear” on its electoral strategy … and deciding...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – Winning on the Economy
    One of the great tricks of the right over the past twenty years has been to desiccate debate about our economy. ‘The economy’ is spoken about as if it is an independent entity, divorced from the realm of democratic politics...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • GUEST BLOG – Curwen Rolinson – They’re tryna build a prison system ...
    Well, at least we now know how National intends to deliver that extra hundred and fifty thousand jobs they’ve promised us. Although on sixty cents an hour, it’s not *quite* the reasonable pay packet – or, hell, living wage that...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • 5AA Australia: NZ General Election is in full swing September 11 2014
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey discuss the fallout from the dirty politics revelations and also how the political leaders are fairing. The NZ General Election is in full swing. Since we last talked, the fallout from the dirty...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • If it barks like a dog…
    If it barks like a dog…...
    The Daily Blog | 11-09
  • The obscenity of National’s tax cuts
    It should be an abhorrence in a nation that once prided itself on its egalitarianism that National want to borrow another $500 million per year while 250 000 – 285 000 children live in poverty. There are two reasons why...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • National’s work prison gulags
    All jails to become ‘working prisons’ under NationalMore prisoners will be put to work and ex-prisoners will receive post-release drug addiction treatment if National is returned to government. Corrections Spokesperson Anne Tolley says the working prisons model will be expanded...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • Top 10 questions if the Conservative Party get over 5%
    1. If the Conservative Party get over 5% do we automatically go back to 1950? 2. If the Conservative Party get over 5% will  the National Anthem be changed from “God defend NZ’ to “God God God” 3. If the...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • BackBenches Auckland Election special & TV3 Leaders debate review
    Fascinating time at the Auckland election special of BackBenches this year. I was at the filming in 2011 and it was a very different beast. I remember in 2011 a sea of blue. Team Key acolytes were everywhere, there was...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • EXCLUSIVE: Was the Donghua Liu Affair another example of Dirty Politics?
    . . – Frank Macskasy & ‘Hercules’ What appears to be an orchestrated  Beehive plot to dig dirt for throwing at Labour leader, David Cunliffe, ahead of a crucial parliamentary debate is revealed in a paper trail linking Immigration Minister,...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • Public interest at risk more than business interests this election
    This election is not just about which political party wins. It’s about the privilege of multinational corporates, including the all-powerful media. It’s about access to minerals and resources needed to prop up the prevailing economic order and to stave off...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • Green Pasifika candidates
    In the last couple of elections the Greens have stood Rev Mua Strickson-Pua as their candidate in Mangere. A well known personality in the Pacific community, often seen by many as a little eccentric. I’ve enjoyed seeing Rev Strickson-Pua make...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • BLOGWATCH: Gordon Campbell’s 19 reasons Why We Can’t Afford Another Nat...
    National Party Billboard if it was honest   The ever brilliant Gordon Campbell over at Werewolf has put together 19 reasons why we can’t afford another National Government. I highly recommend you read the entire thing – his 19 reasons...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Sandy Smiles
    The man tapped the glass with his pen at two minutes and I wound up my less than positive comments about the MPs who’d betrayed the Whangarei Electorate. It’s hard to stay on-message when looking at the state of this...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • Purity and Power: Chris Trotter critiques John Armstrong’s advice to the ...
    WHAT AN EXTRAORDINARY COLUMN from John Armstrong! There have been many this year, but his latest (10/9/14) stands out because of the cynical amorality underpinning the writer’s political analysis. “The Greens face an old dilemma”, opines the NZ Herald’s Chief Political...
    The Daily Blog | 10-09
  • ‘Key vs. Cunliffe’ Final Live NZ Election Reactor
    ohn Key and David Cunliffe go head to head for the final time on TV One on Wednesday as Election Day looms. Roy Morgan wants to know what you think about their performance as the leaders try one last time...
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Chamber welcomes Business Growth Agenda priorities
    Wellington Employers’ Chamber of Commerce welcomes the National Government’s 10 highest priorities for its Business Growth Agenda as essential to continuing strong business performance and economic growth....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • #SafeSource NZ – A secure way to share the truth
    Dirty politics and a dirty environment go hand in hand. Our country’s future as a fairer, cleaner, more prosperous place is being threatened by backroom deals, corporate cronyism and a lack of transparency....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Last vid to encourage youth vote
    Here's the third and final in our series to boost the youth vote. It's called CINDER and it's a play on the popular dating app....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Fee hikes restrict student choices
    A survey of 5000 students from across the tertiary sector shows that tuition fees have increased at the maximum level permitted. Fees are constraining students’ choices more than ever before. Although tuition fees are only permitted to increase...
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • ACT’s five point plan to grow the economy
    ACT has a five point plan to double the rate of economic growth. The Treasury long term forecast for growth is 2% a year. We can lift it to 4%....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • iPredict Daily Election Update
    National’s forecast party vote has risen to 45.3% over the last day, at the expense of Labour and the Greens, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict. A National/Act/UnitedFuture/Maori...
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • National’s economic strategy attack workers’ rights
    The National Party’s ‘Workplaces’ policy confirms that their economic growth strategy relies on attacks on workers rights, according to FIRST Union....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Questions Raised Over Cow Deaths
    The death of 200 cows after eating a new variety of PGG Wrightsons HT swedes [1] is a disaster for New Zealand farmers....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Final decision on Ruakura Development Plan Change
    The independent Board of Inquiry considering the Ruakura Development Plan Change has released its final report and decision. The Board has approved the plan change request but with amendments....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Confirmed – Smacking Law Needs Correction
    Family First NZ says that the ONE News Vote Compass survey showing only 23% support the anti-smacking law is no surprise, and confirms that it’s time the politicians listened to New Zealand families....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Kiwi voters urged to heed warnings
    Kiwi voters would do well to note the advice given this week to Queensland people by retired judge and renowned corruption fighter Tony Fitzgerald, according to Democrats for Social Credit health spokesman David Tranter....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Fisheries policy analysis produces surprising results
    Nine political party policies were analysed to determine which party had the most public friendly fisheries policy and the results surprised LegaSea, an apolitical fisheries lobby group. “For the first time, recreational fishers have been offered...
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • $3m to help keep Hutt families healthy
    National Party candidate for Hutt South, Chris Bishop, welcomes news Hutt City Council has been selected to lead a $3 million anti-obesity initiative in Lower Hutt which will help families improve their health. “Healthy Families NZ is National’s new...
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • Community organisations struggling
    The survey, conducted by community sector network ComVoices, highlights the high level of frustration and urgency being felt by those who deliver services, says group Chairperson, Peter Glensor. 311 organisations completed the survey....
    Scoop politics | 15-09
  • NZ 2014 Election Index – 6-11 September
    Below is iSentia’s weekly Election Index for the period 6 to 11 September, showing the relative amount of coverage of nine Party Leaders in the lead up to the National Election across news media and social media. We will publish...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Workers despair at Nationals lack of fairness
    “Nationals Workplaces policy, released today, fails to articulate any vison about how life for working New Zealanders can be improved.” CTU President Helen Kelly said. “Again if this policy focusses on removing work rights, its own documents...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • National tries to dodge the discussion on workers’ rights
    New Zealanders deserve a proper conversation about National’s plans to keep undermining the real value of their wages and conditions at work. “Today National has released a ‘workplace policy’ which will further widen the imbalance of power between...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Didn’t Get Your Easyvote Pack? You Need to Enrol Now.
    If you didn’t get an EasyVote pack in the mail last week, you need to check your enrolment now as you may not be enrolled....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Survey shows television without adverts could be vote winner
    Survey shows television without adverts could be a vote winner Television news focuses too much on politicians' personalities and not enough on the real issues, according to a UMR survey commissioned by the Coalition for Better Broadcasting....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Which of Key’s many statements will Greenwald challenge?
    John Key's credibility and honesty will be tested on many more GCSB issues than whether there was / is mass surveillance of New Zealanders by the GCSB. I have put together this by no means comprehensive list of Key's statements...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • 4th tranche of Auckland Housing Accord licenses sprawl
    Youth organisation, Generation Zero, is appalled at the next stage of the Auckland Housing Accord, released today, as it is once again focussed on urban sprawl. The fourth tranche of 41 Special Housing Areas (SHAs), allows for 8000 dwellings, nearly...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • New funding to support high value food exports
    Auckland, New Zealand. 15 September 2014...Plant & Food Research has received funding for two new projects in the latest government science investment round....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • National, Greens Big Movers on Bribe-O-Meter
    The Taxpayers’ Union has updated its election policy 'Bribe-O-Meter’ to reflect the cost of recent campaign promises. The update takes into account Labour’s new fiscal tables and all announcements up to Friday and is based on numbers provided...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Policy Costing Expert Questions ‘NZ Power’ Numbers
    Dr Michael Dunn, engaged by the Taxpayers’ Union to provide the figures for the 'Bribe-O-Meter' election costing website , is questioning the Labour Party’s costing of it’s flagship "NZ Power” policy....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Meet the Real Colin Craig
    Watching Conservative Party leader Colin Craig struggling to explain his tax policy on The Nation this morning finally revealed that he is making dishonest promises....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Lifetime Achiever Generous of Investment in Whanau Ora
    Earlier this month, Maori Party's Te Tai Tonga and Christchurch based candidate, Ngaire Button, said she was rapt local hero, Tihi Puanaki, was named Regional Winner of the Pride of NZ 2014, Lifetime Achievement Award. Button is clearly delighted...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Bigger than the Foreshore And Seabed
    “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...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • New Zealand’s participation in Five Eyes
    “Our policy is we're committing to a full review of all of New Zealand's security services. We will be repealing the GCSB legislation and we will replace it with something that is guaranteed to be more protective of New Zealanders...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Once in a Lifetime travels north!
    After Once in a Lifetime ’s packed launch and sold-out panel discussion at the Christchurch Word Writers and Readers Festival, members of the editorial team are presenting the book to Auckland and Wellington audiences, in an attempt to increase...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Q+A: The role of the GCSB and our participation
    Green Party co-leader Russel Norman told TV One’s Q+A programme that they would close Waihopai and review the role of the GCSB and our participation in Five Eyes....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • NZ First poll shows Labour coalition more likely than ever
    New Zealand First’s East Coast candidate, Mere Takoko, has revealed that her party’s internal polling shows Labour’s Moana Mackey is just 2 percent away from winning the East Coast electorate seat from incumbent Anne Tolley....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • iPredict Daily Update
    Initial allegations made by journalist Glenn Greenwald yesterday appear to have dented National’s chances of leading the next Government, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict,...
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • ACT is holding the Balance of Power
    ACT will hold the balance of power after the election on Saturday....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Statement From Hone Harawira And Laila Harré
    The Prime Minister has used his security access to further own political interests, demonstrating he is unfit to hold the office....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Key “rejected mass surveillance plan”
    National Party leader John Key told TV1’s Q+A programme that the GCSB looked into a plan for mass surveillance after two companies were subjected to a major cyber-attack – but he rejected it....
    Scoop politics | 14-09
  • Monday a Moment of Truth for Key on Spying, Says Harré
    Assurances given by the Prime Minister and the GCSB that spy agencies do not conduct mass surveillance on New Zealanders look set to be tested on Monday, says Internet Party leader Laila Harré....
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • Outdoor Voters Poised to Vote
    A New Zealand-wide outdoor recreation organisation predicts the outdoors voting public will have a big impact on the election result....
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • Patrick Gower Interviews NZFirst Leader Winston Peters
    Good. It looks like you’ve got a good crowd there. If we could start, Mr Peters, with Kim Dotcom and Monday night – the big reveal. A personal view from you, do you think that John Key knew about Kim...
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • Lisa Owen Interviews Glenn Greenwald
    Says there are serious questions about whether the government has been truthful about changes to the GCSB legislation. “What I can tell you is that the statement that the GCSB made to New Zealand citizens last year — 'we do...
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • Lisa Owen Interviews National Party Leader John Key
    Lisa Owen: We've got the top five polling party leaders today, but first, Prime Minister John Key. I spoke to him first thing this morning and began by asking him, post-election, who would he prefer to form a coalition with...
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • On the Nation: Lisa Owen Interviews Colin Craig
    Lisa Owen: Conservative Party leader Colin Craig joins me now. Good morning, Mr Craig. Colin Craig: Good morning. John Key was on this programme this morning, and he had a chance to endorse you with a week to go. He...
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • Patrick Gower Interviews Labour Leader David Cunliffe
    Patrick Gower: Yes, David Cunliffe, let’s look at the polls. Any way you slice or dice it, you’ve got a lot of convincing to do with voters to get that left block across the line. How are you going to...
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • Vote for Healthy Seas and Dolphins
    WDC (Whale and Dolphin Conservation) , NABU International and Maui’s and Hector’s Dolphin Defenders....
    Scoop politics | 13-09
  • Provinces Deserve a Fair Go
    Thank you for the opportunity to talk to you today. At the outset of my talk today it is important to emphasis that New Zealand First has a strong commitment to regional development....
    Scoop politics | 12-09
  • Cunnliffe is lying about ACT policy
    "Mr Cunnliffe says that ACT’s policy would enable shopkeepers to have loaded guns in their shops for self defence." said Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 12-09
  • Support kiwi business-friendly policies in Election 2014
    Support kiwi business-friendly policies in Election 2014 The Motel Association of NZ (MANZ) is calling on voters to make sure they vote for the party and candidate who will do the most to support kiwi businesses in the election next...
    Scoop politics | 12-09
  • Disappointment with early start to Holiday Highway
    Youth organisation, Generation Zero, is disappointed by the Prime Minister's announcement today that the Puhoi-Warkworth Highway would start construction in 2016. The highway is over 18 kilometres long, and latest estimates put the cost at over $760 million....
    Scoop politics | 12-09
  • Rural Women welcomes travel cost settlement
    Rural Women New Zealand welcomes news that a proposed settlement has been agreed that will lead to home support workers being paid mileage and wages for the time they spend travelling between clients....
    Scoop politics | 12-09
  • InternetNZ political survey gets answers
    In July this year, InternetNZ released its Election '14 and the Internet document, outlining seven key Internet issues for focus and discussion during this year's election and over the next three years....
    Scoop politics | 12-09
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