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Shearer promises active government

Written By: - Date published: 1:58 pm, January 27th, 2013 - 78 comments
Categories: david shearer, labour, leadership - Tags:

David Shearer has just made his opening speech of the year at the Labour Party Summer School.

There’s no new policy to give the speech real heft, but (given the significant policies already out there, the stage of the electoral cycle, and the lack of teaser hints) I think that was never likely. As such it’s about values and vision, and a solid restatement of Labour’s plans. For me the main content is the promise of active government:

NEW ERA – HANDS ON GOVERNMENT

We desperately need real leadership now more than ever.

The Global Financial Crisis has exposed the frailties of the old economic wisdom. The National Party believes the financial crisis is just a blip to get over. Their solution is to apply their failed ideas of the past over and over. They are wrong. The hands-off, simply leave it to the market approach has failed all over the world. …

We need a government that recognises times have changed. We need a Government that finds the courage to act, not better excuses for why we can’t. We need a government prepared to stand up for hardworking forgotten Kiwis. We need a smart, hands-on Government. A government that is prepared to be a player, not a spectator. That will be a Labour Government, and the Government I will lead. …

Labour’s plans are out there. I’d be delighted if this government picked them up and ran with them. For example:

We’ll pay employers the equivalent of the dole to take on apprentices.

We’ll back Kiwi businesses to get their slice of the $30 billion dollars the Government contracts out every year – but we will require them to take on apprentices and trainees in return.

We’ll give tax breaks to companies doing world-leading research and development, so the innovations – and the jobs – they create stay right here in New Zealand. …

Since we announced KiwiBuild last year, excitement is growing. Architects, construction companies and designers around NZ have been in touch. They see an opportunity to build affordable, energy-efficient – even energy generating – houses. Houses that use home grown sustainable materials. Houses that families will be proud to call home. This is an idea the country is embracing. More than 70 per cent of Kiwis support our KiwiBuild programme to build 100,000 first homes.

New Zealanders are also behind our other new ideas and those numbers are growing. Most people see the need for a Capital Gains Tax on investment properties. Nearly six in every ten New Zealanders support our idea to make KiwiSaver universal. And nearly two-thirds of you back our pledge to protect universal superannuation for future generations by gradually lifting the age of eligibility. …

HANDS ON – A GLOBAL TREND

Labour isn’t alone in knowing the time has come for active government. A movement of leaders and people across the world have realised the old hands-off solutions take us nowhere. It’s a new way of thinking and it’s evolving. New Zealanders are looking to a government that will roll up its sleeves and back them. You do your part, and we the government will do ours. In 2014 that’s the Government I will lead.

The speech goes on to set out an “agenda for 2013″ – check it out.

I’d be hard pressed to call it an exciting speech, but it describes the kind of government that I want. Active, involved, doing things. Leaving everything to the market has had it’s turn and the (lack of) results speak for themselves. Time for a change…

78 comments on “Shearer promises active government”

  1. millsy 1

    Solid speech, look forward to the policies as they come our.

    • xtasy 1.1

      “Solid speech, look forward to the policies as they come our.”

      Yes, I have been waiting for detailed policies for over a year now.

  2. millsy 2

    Solid speech, look forward to the policies as they come out.

  3. James Thrace 3

    *yawn*

    “Number one is jobs. It is our most urgent priority and cuts across everything we do.
    Labour’s plan to build new affordable homes will create thousands of new jobs and apprenticeships.
    A job is more than a weekly wage, it’s gives people a purpose and pride in themselves.
    That’s why I’m focussed on jobs.”

    Translate

    Jobs are good. Jobs keep people. Only jobs to build houses will exist under Shearer Labour.

    “Our housing proposals are at the cutting edge of urban design and energy efficiency.
    This year we will bring together the best ideas of architects, designers, urban planners and others to a housing conference.
    I want KiwiBuild ready to roll on Day 1 when we take office.
    First-home buyers shouldn’t have to wait.”

    Translate

    We use super heap big expensive housing designer and planners. This is good. This make job. No thought given to super heap big expensive council fees for “consents” to put holes in super heap big expensive land. Just jobs be made for super heap big expensive architects, designers and urban planners.

    “Jacinda Ardern, my Social Development spokesperson, will produce an alternative white paper this year, setting out our direction to help lift kids out of poverty.. There are 270,000 children in hardship in this country, and the government is failing them.
    Kids deserve the best chance in life regardless of their parents’ wealth, and with Labour they will get that.”

    Translate

    That Jacinda, cor whiz blimey, she a looker innit! Too busy trying to score one punch on bennet but big bennet bullet dodging. Poor children in poverty. Super heap big hard to create policy. Annette King be talking about super poor children since 2007 but no result cos super heap big hard to give money directly to poverty line families. Easier to develop super heap big expensive third parties to divest money cos that create jobs. Jobs good.

    “Their best opportunity is from a world-class education system.
    We’ve already set out our plan to put food in schools and extend reading recovery so our kids aren’t destined to be drop outs from their first day at school.
    This year I’m asking my education team to look at ways to improve transitions from school to further training and high-skill jobs.
    85,000 young New Zealanders are not in work, education or training.”

    Translate

    Super heap big plan for food in schools designed with urban planners and architect. Create jobs. Jobs good. Education Team of Robertson and Mallard. Yes Mallard, school closure minister, responsible for closing more schools in the 5th Labour Government than National, except now with Parata, maybe more school to close. Schools heap big expensive to run. Need more jobs so create jobs to close schools. Super good plan.

    “I’ve spoken of a clean, green, clever economy many times.
    We need our environment to drive our economic success and our economy to keep our environment clean.
    The reality is we will not create more better paying jobs by simply exporting more milk powder.
    We’ve been talking about it since Mike Moore invented lamb burgers.”

    Translate

    Jobs good. Economy create jobs from the Environment. I know not what this “Environment” is but we must take votes from the Greens. Jobs good. Super heap big jobs come when “Environment” is mentioned. Don’t know how “Environment” creates jobs but …. what’s that Grant?… oh, yes, Environment, Environment, Environment.

    “I am committed to rebuilding Christchurch from the grassroots up, not the Beehive down.
    That’s why I’ll be talking to Cantabrians about how they see their future.
    To ensure their voices are heard.”

    Translate

    That Dalziel supports Cunliffe, I know she good with the Eastern suburbs but she supports Cunliffe. National is committed to “rebuilding Christchurch” and they won with that slogan. Mallard thinks it will win us some votes too. Rebuild Christchurch. Create jobs, jobs good. We don’t want to invest in Christchurch, no, too different. Rebuild Christchurch! Good Idea Trev.

    • The Fan Club 3.1

      Yeah mate, who could be committed to rebuilding Christchurch ’cause it’s the right thing to do. Must be some ploy to win votes, right? And who’d point out that National’s running roughshod over local wishes in Chch? And recycle Dalziel’s pet theme of community strength not state power? Only someone advised by a cynical incompetent, clearly.

    • Macro 3.2

      yeah that’s about it! :( (referring to James not the fan club)

  4. QoT 4

    Well, I’m certainly glad the time is now for active government. It’s not like an active hands-on government has ever been a good idea before the GFC, so thank heavens David Shearer thinks it’s an idea whose time has finally come. :roll:

    • Well spotted.

      I noticed that too: “times have changed” and therefore we need a hands-on government. Previously (e.g., the 80s, 90s and 2000s), it implies, we didn’t have such a need. Rhetorical choices can be revealing.

      Also, looking down the ‘hands-on’ list in the extracted quotation, it comes down to involvement in the market, as opposed to erecting non-market (i.e., social) means of provision (i.e., R&D tax credits, private tendering for government contracts, subsidising employers for apprentice wages, Kiwibuild, etc.). The other policies are simply either orthodox economics or neoliberal (i.e., a CGT and raising the age of super).

      That’s only ‘hands-on’ in the sense that a Liberal Party would advocate ‘hands-on’, rather than how I would expect a Labour Party to advocate ‘hands-on’.

      I’m starting to realise that many MPs in the Labour Party are probably just Liberals who don’t understand the difference between being Liberal and being democratic socialist.

      That’s a pity, if only because it’s confusing. Maybe it results from the lack of a Liberal Party in New Zealand that could soak up some of those Liberals-at-heart and give them a proper home.

      Where are the Labour Party policies advocating new initiatives in non-market provision of public goods and services or in increasing the redistribution of wealth (and hence lowering inequality directly)?

      I guess school lunches across the board would be one – is that the form the ‘food in schools’ policy Labour have put forward would take?

      Maybe the Social Development review will provide some more of these?

      • Tim 4.1.1

        “I’m starting to realise that many MPs in the Labour Party are probably just Liberals who don’t understand the difference between being Liberal and being democratic socialist.”

        Me too!!!

        And now they’re asking for us for support.

        Once betrayed (1987)
        Twice betrayed (when Helen Clarke decided to have a lay down in the 3rd term) – so much that COULD have been done in backing out the previous regime’s programme. (much harder to do now than it was then – and perhaps that’s a lesson for the future eh Mike?

        Not thrice though. Thankfully we now have alternatives and I’m not sure over-ambitious little pratts from the Hutt Valley, OR bovver boys entertaining Catholic Gurrls dressed in buzzniss suits made out of my grandma’s couch have actually cottoned on to that.

        Labour will actually have to DEMONSTRATE they’re no longer welded to neo-lib/3rd way/4th Reich bullshit before they EVER get my vote again (and those of a rather large extended family). I wish them well though. Failure to me seems self evident.

        • Drakula 4.1.1.1

          My sentiments exactly, Shearer has to prove that he can walk the walk and if asked “are you a democratic socialist?” What will his answer be? Yes or No?

          I will be supporting the Greens I would like to support Labour but I can’t take any risks with those who may be all shiny on the outside and shit on the inside.

          If there was an opposition coalition and Green was in the lead then Labour politicians would have to earn their patch and gain back the credibility they have lost over the decades.

      • Puddleglum 4.1.2

        To clarify my point about market intervention/guidance vs non-market provision it’s worth noting the mirror image of this thinking in the public sector itself.

        PPPs, charter schools (even vouchers), sub-contracting to private medical providers to meet operation targets, etc., etc. all use the same logic as these ‘hands-on’ policies – i.e., that, in many areas, it’s best to have a mix in which the government has goals and the market manages the provision.

        That is nothing other than the governance-management split which is a pure neoliberal idea that ultimately devolves to the notion that the market can ‘manage’ to provide what ‘we’ all want so long as we send it clear signals as to what provision will be rewarded.

        The only difference between National and Labour then becomes that National claims that it believes that individuals should send the signals to the market while Labour says that the government can send the signals to the market.

        All well and good – and there’s a long, Liberal history of this kind of thinking – but, once again, it’s not what I would expect from a Labour Party.

        Perhaps a party name change is in order? Just to avoid confusion and to respect the historical meaning of words.

      • xtasy 4.1.3

        “I guess school lunches across the board would be one – is that the form the ‘food in schools’ policy Labour have put forward would take? ”

        I am afraid that this kind of stuff is exactly what Labour is about. It is full of tokenism, of little signals of symbolic value, but not intent on changing the system.

        The media are happy with it, the right wing may not like it, but can to some degree accommodate it (as long as it costs not too much), and otherwise it does not address the root causes.

        That is where I see Labour, full of words and tokenism, but not prepared for REAL social and economic change. By the way, has Shearer qualified the talk about “hands on”? I have not heard or read it, so surprise me, please.

        It is just all designed to win some votes, and too little substance, I am afraid. Shearer, fail, 4 out of 10 I’d say.

  5. fatty 5

    We’ll pay employers the equivalent of the dole to take on apprentices.
    We’ll back Kiwi businesses to get their slice of the $30 billion dollars the Government contracts out every year – but we will require them to take on apprentices and trainees in return.
    We’ll give tax breaks to companies doing world-leading research and development, so the innovations – and the jobs – they create stay right here in New Zealand.

    Sweet!
    Shearer’s gonna pump Government money into companies so that the job creators might take a risk and train up some of those deceitful roof painters.

    The trickle down myth continues…

    • QoT 5.1

      Because paying employers to “create jobs” has never ever resulted in existing workers being fired.

    • infused 5.2

      The red tapes not worth it. Like getting any big govt contract, only the big boys play in that area.

    • xtasy 5.3

      Paying the employer the equivalent of the dole to train someone is easily abused, I would say. What conditions would there be? Is a trade qualification at the end of it? Or can employers use the scheme, say they will do this and the other, but then just use the young trainee to do menial work no other employee will do, and if there is any issue, just off-load the trainee?

      It gives a lot of power over to the employer. I fear that there is maybe not enough detail to ensure the trainee or apprentice also is heard and respected.

      So Shearer is talking stuff some employers and others may like, but the detail is needed to fairly judge on what it means and how it will work!

      • Treetop 5.3.1

        Job seekers are already being abused due to being bullied about finding a job which may lead to nowhere. At least job training has some future.

        Employers have always had power, this is why unions need to be strengthened or to have better dispute resolutions. Detail is required to ensure any scheme will not treat a person unfairly.

  6. Afewknowthetruth 6

    So what does Shearer propose to do about climate change, especially now that Lord Stern (author of the Stern Report) has admitted he got it wrong and the situation is far more dire than he thought [in 2006]?

    I think we can rely on the Labour Party to carry on ignoring the issue of climate change, just as they continue to ignore Peak Oil (now in the past, and causing economic mayhem ) and the imminent meltdown of the money system.

    Hands on government. What a laugh! Shills for global corporations and money-lenders more like it.

  7. handle 7

    National has been very ‘hands-on’ since 2008. All that damage doesn’t happen by itself. Which genius chose to hang Labour’s campaign on this easily-countered theme?

    • Coronial Typer 7.1

      Even the phrase “commercially interventionist” could be owned by National at this point. I think it was Hooten who recently pointed out the range of pretty direct commercial interventions. The point Labour needs to refer to is WHY intervene; not merely to prop up multinationals and the few squillionares we already have. The point of intervening is to increase the wealth for everyone; ie as many as possible, not the few, and they should be New Zealanders not so much foreign owners.

      • xtasy 7.1.1

        This could easily be dealt with by drawing up and bringing in a universal “investment charter”, demanding compliance from all, overseas, national and government when investing, to ensure some minimum benefits to NZ and NZers as a whole. I wonder why this has never been done? Countries like Singapore are a bit more ahead apart from such thoughts, but little NZ thinks, open the boarder, free flow of money, investment, labour, migration and so forth, that will be the panacea for all.

        Somehow it does not work I fear.

  8. just saying 8

    I wasn’t going to comment. I’m as tired of all this as the ABC club must be.

    But what utter bollocks.

    And couldn’t he have worked in “hard-working” a couple of dozen more times. Sheesh, some listeners (and I doubt anyone other than the die-hards would have kept awake beyond the first few predictable, and trite paragraphs) might have missed all of those whistles.

    • CV - Real Labour 8.1

      Yeah it was pretty dense on the “hand up, not a hand out” memes.

    • Rhinoviper 8.2

      And fluffies are kitten. That’s nice. We’re nice. We’re holding the accountant to govern. And so on.

      I’m wondering how you can be “hard-working” if you don’t have a job… unless painting roofs is hard work, and he’s including the poor and beneficiaries in his “vision” after all.

      Maybe the speechwriter got it sort of right in their banal way, but how was it delivered? At this point, I’m ready to support HAL 9000 – he was clear in his speech.

    • Bill 8.3

      The welfare safety net will continue to be hauled ever higher in any goverment under this Labour Party as it’s currently configured. And the mesh on that net will be made larger so that no ‘undeserving’ poor are inadvertantly caught up in smething intended only for the ‘deserving’ poor (ie, working – and to become increasingly working and lower middle class only at it’s lower extremes).

      So you best make sure you can ‘do your bit’.

  9. CV - Real Labour 9

    There are solid elements to the speech, like working with local councils on things like rail projects. But as AFKTT states, nothing on climate change, nor on peak oil, two existential threats to our civilisation.

    I’m also particularly concerned about this:

    It’s about getting our priorities right, being thrifty about our economy.

    Bringing our debt under control.

    Unless Shearer is talking about increasing the tax take, this seems to point to austerity measures.

    There is also a distinct absence of help coming for those beneficiaries trying to live on the lowest incomes in the country.

    The Greens housing policy is superb, and Key has come out with a pretty strong apprenticeships policy. To my mind, Labour needs to be putting more bold policy out, faster.

    • xtasy 9.1

      ‘Real Labour’ now – The Greens are doing so much rather well, they may overtake Labour within the coming 5 years!

    • ordinary_bloke 9.2

      CV, I get that message too. Once Key retires, they bring in a hitman from the centre-left. Great blindside tactics, except for those of us, poor sods, struggling from week to week ..

      • Just gettin by 9.2.1

        I dont like the housing policy. It sounds as if we are going to be herded into low cost high rise slums. I like the kiwi dream, soil under my feet a lawn and vege garden, bring up a family and just relax!!!!! Write off the student loans would be a good idea too. I cant get a job because I will have to start paying off my student loan. These rich pricks had free education, so should I.

        Labour needs to focus on getting rid of the loans first and then get the rents for public housing back down to $50 per week. They might get my vote then.

    • Drakula 9.3

      CV; I agree, increasing the tax take? There is no other way around it; not austerity but TAXING THE BLOODY ONE PERCENT!!!

      And capital gains tax to finance affordable housing could be a good place to start.

  10. Bill 10

    Just an observation, but I contrasted that speech with Metiria’s ‘State of the Planet’ speech. Both speeches have more or less the same intent, though obviously content and emphases differ. But here’s the thing (as best as I can get a handle on it).

    Whereas when Metiria speaks it feels natural enough and agreement is invited, with Shearer, even where he is trying to take the same approach…well, that’s it really. It feels that Shearer is always trying and reaching and attempting to force agreement onto the listener rather than inviting it.

    It kind of goes – Here’s a homily and this is what I conclude from that homily or the attitudes it speaks of…. and now I’m going to apply that conclusion and/or those attitudes to you. It’s bloody horrible.

    It’s like the man is standing on the outside speaking in and overlaying or imposing his thoughts on ‘others’ who are listening, instead of speaking from a common ground and sharing common concerns and experiences.

    • IrishBill 10.1

      He does have problems with his style. This had the feeling of a whole lot of “shearer says” emails stitched together. I think, Bill, the sense of imposition you’re getting is because Shearer is telling rather than showing. He needs to learn to lead the reader/listener into his idea so that when he makes his point it’s self-evidently correct.

      Met’s is better but slightly patronising. She needs to work on using more concrete language and elucidating her points more clearly especially if the greens are interested in expanding their vote out to the suburbs. Phrases like “agent of hope” and “thought leader” ghettoize her message.

      • Bill 10.1.1

        I dunno Irish. I think it’s way beyond mere style. I think it’s what he is…detached.

    • lightly 10.2

      maybe you can learn that naturalness. It’s worth noting that Shearer’s not only the newest of the party leaders in Parliament as a leader, he’s also spent the least time as a politician.

      His speeches certainly read better (and more leftwing) since they got Julian Robins in and shut Pagani out.

      • Rhinoviper 10.2.1

        Well, signs of hope there. Maybe in time he’ll be ready to perform as a competent minister in Bill Rowling’s cabinet.

  11. Rhinoviper 11

    CV:

    The Greens housing policy is superb, and Key has come out with a pretty strong apprenticeships policy. To my mind, Labour needs to be putting more bold policy out, faster.

    Bill:

    It’s like the man is standing on the outside speaking in and overlaying or imposing his thoughts on ‘others’ who are listening, instead of speaking from a common ground and sharing common concerns and experiences.

    Agree with both.

    This is Stepford Labour as a printed speech (Cthulhu only knows what Shearer did to mangle it in delivery) versus the Greens’ real focus.

    Keeping your powder dry” was always nonsense, and the Labour Caucus, when campaigning needs to lay down a narrative, establishing a commonality between the storyteller and listener right from the beginning. I’m glad that they’ve appreciated this blindingly obvious point at last. However, a good storyteller knows their audience and wants to be one with them, but McLabour has talking points and the result is something like a bad romcom: they have all the elements the marketing people said would do well in the midwest, they’ve eliminated absolutely everything that would scare anyone anywhere on earth as well as several hypothetical alien species, but the cast is second-rate and all the laughter is canned.

    Principles, heart, passion, solidarity, genuine empathy, courage, a “fuck you” to the banksters. Try it.

  12. Anne 12

    Whereas when Metiria speaks it feels natural enough and agreement is invited, with Shearer, even where he is trying to take the same approach…well, that’s it really. It feels that Shearer is always trying and reaching and attempting to force agreement onto the listener rather than inviting it.

    To be fair Bill. Metiria is a former lawyer. They are trained to be articulate and are usually good at expressing themselves. She’s also been in parliament a long time now. David S is still a novice in some ways I know, and public speaking doesn’t come naturally to him. But he is improving all the time so let’s give him a bit longer to prove himself. IMO, the re-shuffle will be a better indicator.

    I will probably upset a few people with the following:

    I think it’s time to tone down the criticism of Shearer. In my view, it is being taken a bit too far by some commentators on The Standard and is now becoming counter-productive. In fact, I think some here are playing straight into the hands of the ABC club (and their media mates) by continuing to rubbish everything he says and does. A perception is being created that TS commenters and posters are all a bunch of subversive, extremist “whackos” and it’s not true.

    • Bill 12.1

      I’m thinking that whether she trained as a lawyer or not is beside the point. Or are you likewise suggesting that because D. Shearer worked in conflict resolution situations he didn’t need to be articulate?

      See, I’ve been around when Metiria has spoken in public and she isn’t completely comfortable…like most people she takes a minute or two to ‘warm up’. And when I’ve run into her on a one to one basis the exchange is just natural and easy as between two equals. I could contrast that with former mp’s I’ve met who felt compelled to ham it up in an attempt to come across as ‘one of the lads’….y’know, by somewhat woodenly swearing a lot. (I kid you not) But can I imagine having a free and easy exchange with D. Shearer? No. He’s just not of my world and as far as I can tell shares none of my cultural reference points and (I suspect) he’d be quietly frightened by the mere presence of one of those people he seems only to gain understanding of through stories or tales.

      As for more time… and more time…. and more time. Nah. Time’s up and has been for quite some while now. But that said, as far as I’m concerned I’ll sit fairly quietly by and just wait for February and see if a party wide vote transpires….partly because I do agree that attempts to categorise authors and commenters at ‘the standard’ as whacko’s, nutters or whatever is actually happening and it’s too valuable a source of info for that to be allowed to happen. And also, importantly, because I’ve no desire to contribute to any ‘intra-standard’ strife anyone might be interested in engineering.

      • Anne 12.1.1

        Or are you likewise suggesting that because D. Shearer worked in conflict resolution situations he didn’t need to be articulate?

        No. I was talking only about making speeches etc.

        Actually I agree with most of what you say Bill – and Olwyn. Patience is running out for me too. But I still live in hope…

    • Olwyn 12.2

      Jenny has said on another thread, “Instead of delivering on their promises of reform and social justice, left social democratic parties on gaining office are finding themselves having to agree to imposing austerity. There can be little doubt this is the path mapped out by Shearer and crew for the Labour Party in Government.” This sums up my fear of the present configuration of the Labour Party. I do not want to deliver pamphlets, door knock and cheer lead for a few people to have high flying careers that are conditional on their ‘bravely” inflicting suffering on others. I agree with you Anne that attacking Shearer every turn of the way is counter productive, and I guess I will have to wait it out to see whether my fears are shown to be justified or not. Cant, threat and spin, however, do more to inflame than soothe them: I want to see some reality. And I must add that I have never been a member of the Alliance, and that I cheerfully door-knocked etc. for Clark and Goff.

  13. GeoffC 13

    @ann good comment, if we commentators of the left become counterproductive and isolated then we become nothing more than spectators dreaming of lost hopes.
    Labour will never overnight become what some of the extreme red posters purpose, it is not simply possible but if you look at the language used by shearer…
    Third way hybrid neoliberal social demo replaced with something else.
    The uk labour have labelled it one nation
    We signalled a hands on govt.
    Promising start platform now to cross link policy ESP.

  14. higherstandard 14

    No different from Key’s speech………boring load of old cant.

    Out, out brief candle !

  15. Glen Forrester 15

    IMHO it looks like he just copied from your man David Cunliffe’s speeches from last year. Just somehow more patronising… Guess now I understand all the hate Shearer pro Cunliffee stuff on this blog.

  16. gobsmacked 16

    I’m not too bothered about a lack of meat in the speech at this stage. It’s January, it’s hot, and only us political junkies are really paying attention.

    The real concern is anticipating the follow-up questions, and Shearer’s future answers.

    Interviewer – “So, Mr Shearer, “hands-on”, “a player not a spectator”, “an interventionist government” … isn’t that a clear shift to the left? Will your government be more left-wing than Clark/Cullen?”.

    The question is predictable (and perfectly fair) and so Labour/Shearer need to have an answer. Saying (again) that “left/right doesn’t mean anything” is going to get a snort of derision.

    If Shearer means what he says, then he has to be able to (a) defend on principle (now) and (b) cost on detail (later). I have serious doubts about his ability to do either. Once we get past generalities to specifics, he struggles. At least, he always *has* struggled, but we’re led to believe he’s a New Shearer, post-Conference 2012. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.

    • Pete 16.1

      Interviewer – “So, Mr Shearer, “hands-on”, “a player not a spectator”, “an interventionist government” … isn’t that a clear shift to the left? Will your government be more left-wing than Clark/Cullen?”

      The ideal answer would be along the lines of:

      “It’s not about what’s left and what’s right, it’s about what works and what doesn’t. John Key’s government isn’t working. It’s plain for everyone to see. A Labour-led government will be solutions-oriented and willing to grapple the problems that Mr Key won’t address”.

    • Treetop 16.2

      “Once we get past generalities to specifics, he struggles.”

      This is what bugs me the most about Shearer.

  17. Craig Glen viper 17

    Shearers not a leader pure and simple and thats why people do not relate to him and he says and neither will the electorate. Shearer is pissing in the wind and the caucus and people like Mike Smith are going ooooh look people the rains nice and warm and the amazing Mr Shearer has made it yellow. What a joke..

  18. KhandallaViper 18

    Shearer’s Speech? The words were fine, even if the delivery was awkward and artificial.

    Jobs, Children in Hardship, Education, A green, clever economy and Christchurch. And all “hands on”.

    And I still feel so so uncomfortable.

    He didn’t speak, look, behave, feel like a person from whose core these words were resonating. It had previously presented elements so should have flowed. And even with tele-prompter and rehearsal it was clutsey. He will be absolute dog tucker in any live-television debate.

    Secondly I cannot get past the fact that he has the exact same team around him who have been running the same ineffective show using the same blunt instruments since 2008. These people, including Trevor the host today, got angry when some criticised the Party’s stance in the ’80s. These people are paying Mike Williams to accuse non-lovers of being Nutters and Alliance infiltrators.

    Finally there is still wholesale efforts to stop the members have a say in the leadership. That is also giving the deaf ear to membership having a REAL say in policy. Today’s speech will not excite our members, our youth, the drift to the greens. Without a real leadership debate we are lost. A show endorsement of Shearer will be a lose lose for everyone.

  19. Nick K 19

    This from Shearer’s speech:

    Since we announced KiwiBuild last year, excitement is growing. Architects, construction companies and designers around NZ have been in touch. They see an opportunity to build affordable, energy-efficient – even energy generating – houses. Houses that use home grown sustainable materials. Houses that families will be proud to call home. This is an idea the country is embracing. More than 70 per cent of Kiwis support our KiwiBuild programme to build 100,000 first homes.

    Of course they are. The businesses all want a taxpayer contract to make them millions and the “Kiwis” want the taxpayer to subsidise them into a new home. Who wouldn’t want this chequebook politics!!

  20. billbrowne 20

    Rather than just paying private employers to take on apprentices, I believe the following approaches are more beneficial:

    Apprenticeships in the public sector starting with:
    A nationalised electricity generation and transmission department
    An expansion of rail services
    A re-nationalisation of Chorus

    A refocusing on trade training through polytechnics which include a state sponsored and monitored apprenticeships scheme

    • CV - Real Labour 20.1

      yep +1

    • Macro 20.2

      Good start – and if Rio Tintocontinue to play fast and loose with Tiwai Point – kick em out and negotiate with Australia to have a joint SOE ANZAC Aluminium smelter.

      Setting Trade tariffs and import quotas on selected goods and services to re-promote NZ industry is another thing that desperately needs attention. In opening our boarders to free trade we have simply exported jobs to less developed countries. Why for instance should NZ import wine bottles from China which up until a few years ago were designed and manufactured in NZ. Yes I know – it’s ‘cheaper’. But only to the producer – society picks up the rest of the tab in increased unemployment and loss of incentive. This is just one example – it has been repeated over innumerable industries to our shame and cost. Australia has been more resistant to opening up its boarders and and as a result has faired much better economically. It is a modern myth that Australia’s current economic strength is based solely on their mineral wealth, eg the retention of their car manufacturing ‘Holden’ and ‘Ford’ in the face of a dramatically changing global automobile industry, is a prime example. We NZers may bleat about their reluctance to accept our apples – but their fruit industry survives because of it. Protectionism is an essential part of a viable Nations economy.

  21. 4wardthinking 21

    4/10 for content and 7/10 for presentation – (probably thanks to some pretty obvious media training). One speech does not a leader make…

  22. faiala4 22

    To boring / Didn’t finish. Like when he goes on the telly.

  23. Blue 23

    “Shearer promises active government” How? Is he resigning before the election?

  24. infused 24

    So that was pretty much a speech about nothing then… IE same shit re-hashed?

    You guys must be mad now.

  25. Hami Shearlie 25

    Shearer comes across to me as someone merely parroting someone else’s lines!! All the “new” table thumping and arms waving everywhere is overdone and FAKE!! He can’t sell the policies because he doesn’t truly believe in them!! This is what people are picking up on!! No-one knows to this day what David Shearer’s personal beliefs truly are!! And I’m not at all convinced that he’s as “nice” a guy as people claim he is, or if he really believes in democratic socialism!! He’s just, in a word, “unbelievable”!

    • Colonial Viper 25.1

      One thing that you’re picking up on is that the speech writing has not captured Shearer’s own voice, but that of a number of different contributors to the creation of that speech. Hence it sounds a bit disjointed and inauthentic.

      Another key problem, even with the better delivered speeches, and also all the set pieces with BBQs and guitars or whatever, is that they continue to leave us with precious little sense of who the real David Shearer is, and what he stands for in his heart of hearts.

      At a visceral level, and at a political level, that is highly unnerving.

  26. xtasy 26

    Shearer is really hands-on. I see so much footage of him having his hands dug deep in his pockets. Is he “hands on” with something below the beltline? I see little else of the man convincing me that he is “hands on”. Sorry, what a disappointment.

  27. burt 27

    Hands on … hands on other peoples money to buy the vote so …. so the economy can be stagnated in just 6 years handing a rooted economy to National… Happened in the 80′s/90′s – Happened in 2008 – roll up roll up for 2020 – we can ruin the economy via intervention and popularist poor quality spending again if we just vote for other peoples money…..

  28. Tiresias 28

    Agree with the general tenor of the above.

    It was the worst of both worlds – it was a politician’s speech, but Shearer isn’t politician enough to deliver it and get away with it.

    It was, if you go into it, exactly the kind of speech Obama gave when electioneering in 2008 – praise the American people for being exceptional and tell them their problems are someone else’s fault, but he knows how to fix them because “together, we can”. But because Obama has more charisma in his little finger than Shearer has in his entire body, and because Obama could sell himself as something new on the scene, because Obama has a genuine gift of oratory and (let’s face it) because the American people are more easily suckered than cynical, morose New Zealanders, it carried the day.

    And let’s not forget that Obama won the White House in 2008 with a solid Democrat majority in both Houses of Congress and the power to achieve great things, and promptly betrayed his entire voting base in favour of his financial backers.

  29. Tiresias 29

    No new policy?

    Has a commitment to introduce a Capital Gains Tax been given before?

    Has a promise to feed children at school been given before?

    Has an undertaking to change monetary policy to deal with the exchange rate ‘to ease the load on exporters’ been given before?

    • CV - Real Labour 29.1

      1) and 3) were certainly in the Manifesto for the 2011 election, and I thought 2) giving children breakfast in schools was part of Labour’s child poverty initiatives announced for then too (from memory).

  30. I didn’t think much of the speech no policy no detail. I am looking forward to seeing his new lineup I see the Sunday Times said Mallard maybe dropped or Street Mahuta Dalziel Chauvel. According Sunday times Megan Woods Dave Clark Sue Moroney Andrew Little Kris Faafoi Shane Jones have all put up for promotion. Who do you reckon will be dropped? Some People reckon Shearer will Keep Lobbyists such as Street or Mallard in Line Up he needs to dominate them and your winner Mr Shearer if you do keep them your loser.

  31. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 31

    It is just a lie to say this government is not active.

    They are balls deep in everything:

    The $400 million irrigation fund
    the $1.5 billion for ultra-fast broadband
    $100m for export assistance
    $15m for business capability
    $30m for sector and special events
    $30m for international growth opportunities
    $50m for large budget screen productions
    $10m for major events
    $12m for venture capital
    $10m for primary industry grants
    $9m for sustainable farming
    $70m for primary growth partnerships
    $220m for CRI funding
    $178m for high value manufacturing and services research
    $106m for biological industries research
    $84m for health and society research
    $47m for Marsden Fund

    Now, you might say that all of this is bad spending. I would agree with you. But, when the government thinks it has a role to play in the economy, it will inevitably spend money on stupis shit. That’s why it shouldn’t.

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    Greens | 23-07
  • Extent of job losses at Invermay remain hidden
    Despite growing concern in the agriculture and science sectors, both AgResearch management and the Minister responsible are continuing to hide the true extent of job losses at AgResearch’s Invermay campus, Labour’s MP for Dunedin North David Clark says. “Science and...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Tōku reo, tōku oho oho, tōku reo, tōku mapihi maurea – MANA launches ...
    “MANA is launching its te reo Māori policy this morning ahead of the first reading of the government’s Māori Language Strategy Bill this afternoon”, saidMANA deputy leader and candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes. “MANA’s policy is based on a love...
    Mana | 23-07
  • Connectivity Upgrade to close digital divide
    Labour will close the digital divide with its Connectivity Upgrade to ensure all New Zealanders can be part of a growing, more connected economy and have the right to access quality broadband, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.  “The digital revolution...
    Labour | 23-07
  • New parents deserve support – Labour will deliver
    ...
    Labour | 23-07
  • National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates
    National has refused a briefing from a group of Maui's dolphins experts, whose research shows 80 per cent of New Zealanders want greater protection for the critically endangered dolphin, the Green Party said today.Dolphin campaigner Gemma McGrath and marine scientist...
    Greens | 23-07
  • MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour
    “Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week”, said MANA candidate for Mt Albert, Joe Carolan. “A good start would be for all Labour Auckland MPs and members to join the Justice for Palestine...
    Mana | 23-07
  • We must act to save our dolphins
    A new report makes it clear for the urgent need to protect Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins while arguing  it is clear that there is no need for further research, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson.  “Labour backs the public call...
    Labour | 23-07
  • School told to manipulate national standards data
    Parents can have little confidence in the Government’s National Standards after an Auckland school was told to manipulate its data so it added up, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Valley School in Pukekohe was advised in an email from the...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Regional economies must have tailored plans
    News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional economies, Labour’s MP for Hauraki-Waikato Nanaia Mahuta says. “The Canpac site has effectively responded...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Auditor General slams Shared Services project
    The Auditor-General’s Office could not have been more damning about the 18 months spent on the Central Agency Shared Services (CASS) project at the Finance and Expenditure Committee this morning, says Maryan Street, Labour’s State Services spokesperson.  ...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato
    The potential loss of up to 114 jobs from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton is a massive blow to the Waikato region which has already lost hundreds of jobs, Labour says. Labour’s Social Development spokesperson and Hamilton-based list MP Sue...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital
    The decision to reject the proposed flyover at the Basin Reserve must be taken as an opportunity to properly fund Wellington’s transport future and must not be used as an excuse to take resources away from the capital, Wellington Labour MPs...
    Labour | 22-07
  • National out of touch with the regions
    John Key is out of touch with regional New Zealand if he believes tinkering with council regulations will restore opportunities to small towns, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “While the regions are crying out for sustainable growth and job opportunities,...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Flyover rejection a victory for sustainable transport
    The rejection of the proposed Basin Reserve flyover by a Board of Inquiry is a victory for sustainable transport in Wellington and paves the way for other alternatives to be given a fair hearing, Wellington Labour MPs Grant Robertson and...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Reo Māori Policy Launch
    MANA will be launching its Reo Māori policy at 10am Thursday 24 July, at Matangireia (the old Māori Affairs Select Committee room at Parliament). We will also be addressing our concerns regarding the Minister of Māori Affairs Māori Language Strategy...
    Mana | 22-07
  • Basin Flyover decision victory for common sense
    The Green Party welcomed the Environmental Protection Authority's draft decision announced today not to allow the $90 million Basin Reserve flyover in Wellington to proceed."Both popular and expert opinion opposed the flyover. The proposal was expensive, unnecessary and would have...
    Greens | 22-07
  • Loss Leading could destroy Kiwi lamb’s reputation
    Meat companies that supply supermarkets and sell New Zealand lamb as a loss leader in the United Kingdom should lose their access to this valuable quota market, said Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor. “Our reputation as a Lamb producer...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Ae Marika! 22 July 2014
    The big storm has gone, but the damage that it did and the saturation levels that it reached meant that smaller storms quickly overwhelmed roading, and water-flow systems again in the north. And although certain individuals are talking up the...
    Mana | 21-07
  • 2014 Roger Award nominations now open
    The Roger Award is for The Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand in 2014 Nominations are now open please visit the website to nominate the worst TNC in Aotearoa. You will need to include reasons why you think your...
    Mana | 21-07
  • Labour will revive the regions with new fund
    The next Labour Government will co-develop Regional Growth Plans for every region of New Zealand and will invest at least $200 million in a fund to create breakthrough opportunities for jobs and sustainable growth, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 21-07
  • Speech to Local Government New Zealand
    Speech to the Local Government New Zealand Conference 2014 Read our full regional development policy Download Introduction Early in my time as an MP I went for a long walk on a windswept Kare Kare beach with Waitakere mayor Bob Harvey. We talked...
    Labour | 21-07
  • Something Fishy About Nick Smith’s Game.
    NICK SMITH’S crude intimidation of the Fish and Game Council points to the bleakest of environmental futures should National be re-elected on 20 September. It is now considerably clearer than 60 percent of New Zealand’s lakes, rivers and streams that...
    The Daily Blog | 28-07
  • Key’s odd personal hypocrisy in Epsom, his kiss of death to the Maori Par...
    Aside from tricking Colin Craig into running in an electorate National can crush him in, John Key has announced three things in his election deals that are ill thought out. The first is his deal with the Maori Party. At a time...
    The Daily Blog | 28-07
  • Why it’s all over for the Conservative Party
    Whatever flirtations were made months ago to Colin Craig by National strategists, the polling must have come back showing them too much of their soft urban vote would walk if Key was in Government with Colin Craig.  The necessary inside muscle to...
    The Daily Blog | 28-07
  • Balance in the NZ Herald and has something gone terribly wrong at the Heral...
    So the ‘balance’ in the NZ Herald this year for the election will be… Guest columnists will include the acerbic Cactus Kate from the radical right, former Labour candidate Josie Pagani and broadcaster Mark Sainsbury. Right, so that would be...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Phew – National Party hubris seals strategy
    The National Party are bot listening to Matthew Hooton. Phew. Hooton has crunched the numbers and based on past polling National always drops 6 points come election day. National aren’t listening. Barging through the need to cut deals with all...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Noam Chomsky on the TPPA
    Noam Chomsky on the TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Unacceptable secrecy around labelling people terrorists
    It’s good to see the Sunday Star-Times attempting to get more information from government agencies about Daryl Jones, the Kiwi killed in a US drone strike in Yemen.  The paper is right to complain about the government’s refusal to provide...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • A critical deconstruction of John Key – what’s behind the facade?
    Aspiring national leaders need a popular narrative of their rise to power.  Once in office, the narrative can be refined to fit the requirements of leadership and re-election.  Such is the purpose of John Roughan’s John Key: Portrait of  a...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Radio Live – off Mark
    The Top Marks lasted five weeks on Mediaworks radio station The Sound. This may have something to do with last being relevant in the mid-1980s when there were only two commercial FM licences in Auckland and they were on one...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Wellingtonians say ‘No!’ to Israeli aggression
    .   . Wellington, NZ, 26 July – About 600 Wellingtonians, and from further afield, met at the Cuba Mall Bucket fountain under a wintery sunny sky, to protest Israel’s continuing aggression in the Gaza strip, which – at the...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Shasha Ali – I am an indigenous person but I will never call ...
    Yesterday was indeed a politically hectic day in Aoteaora New Zealand, especially if you are an activist that cares about both human and non-human animal rights. Protest actions were organised to demand an end to factory farming from about noon, and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • Pro-Israel, Pro-Palestine or ‘Pro-Peace’?
    Latest protest for people of Gaza in Auckland In the past couple of weeks I have heard a lot of people say that they are neither Pro-Israel nor Pro-Palestine; they are pro-peace. This is a stand that I respect. Everyone...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • So we can’t feed the kids, the poor OR the sick now?
    Let me get this straight. We can borrow $10 billion in tax cuts over the last 6 years for the richest NZers, but we can not feed the kids, the poor or even the sick now? Revealed: Warning over hospital food...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • Kim Dotcom has said it, Laila Harre has said it and now David fisher says i...
    Fascinating piece by David Fisher in the NZ Herald breaking down how many opportunities the Government had to listen to officials and stop KDC entering the country and concludes KDC should never have been allowed in… It prepared papers for the...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • You, Me and the GCSB Public Meetings
      The GCSB and TICS legislation rushed through Parliament by John Key represent the largest erosion of civil liberties this country has seen since the 1951 Waterfront Lockout. In the post Snowden world we now know a mass surveillance state operating...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • A feminist takedown of Whale Oil
    Whale Oil does it again. How many more times is he going to attack and discredit Tania Billingsley publicly? In a short blog published on Wednesday ‘Nothing to be sorry for‘ Whale Oil also known as Cameron Slater, is defending John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Ares Rolinson – New Zealand First – We’ll Be Back
    Earlier this week, Bomber penned a missive which set out in some detail why he thought my people, New Zealand First, wouldn’t be making it back into Parliament later this year. Being a pugnacious, vindictive sort who’d never let such an...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • The changes teachers DO want
    “Oh you teachers, you just want everything to stay the same – what’s wrong with choice?  Bloody teachers.  Typical that you don’t want testing – trying to hide that you’re all useless. What about our poor kids?  Gnash gnash rant rant...” That’s...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • A feminist take down of Whale Oil
    Whale Oil does it again. How many more times is he going to attack and discredit Tania Billingsley publicly? In a short blog published on Wednesday Nothing to be sorry for Whale Oil also known as Cameron Slater, is defending John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • On so called Labour Party ‘distractions’
    The right wing of the Labour Party are constructing a narrative that Labour need to stop chasing distractions and focus on the real issues that matter and not these silly GCSB, inequality, domestic violence, media bias, TPPA issues. It is...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • Selfies: Labour’s Electorate MPs are at it again
    IT’S A LITTLE TRIANGLE of grass at the corner of Rewa Street and Mt Eden Road, ideal for election hoardings. Wandering along Mt Eden Road last Saturday morning to our weekly appointment with the brunch menu at Orvieto, my family and...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • Well, well, well – Jonathan Coleman did know about FBI interest into Kim ...
    Last years GCSB Town Hall meeting in Auckland Oh dear, the cover up and lies are starting to fall over now aren’t they… Coleman knew of FBI interest in Dotcom pre-residency decisionGovernment minister Jonathan Coleman knew the FBI was interested...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Why You Must March Against Factory Farming This Saturday, 12pm
    The rally this Saturday is critical because this is the FIRST TIME IN NEW ZEALAND HISTORY that a major party has agreed to ban all intensive factory farming practices. The Labour party, the Greens, Internet-Mana, the SPCA, SAFE and other...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Astronaut tweets photo of explosions over Israel and Gaza from space
      This is what a war zone looks like from space: From aboard the International Space Station, German astronaut Alexander Gerst tweeted this image as the station passed over Israel and Gaza in what he called ‘his saddest photo yet’....
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • When Firstline are focusing on flag burning rather than dead Palestinian ch...
    The IDF are butchering children in UN schools this morning and what’s the big issue on TV3s Firstline? Flag burning. How pathetic, and what a slap in the face to Mike McRoberts who is currently risking his life in Gaza...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • ‘Victim’ vs ‘Terrorist’
    ‘Victim’ vs ‘Terrorist’...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Petition asking TVNZ to stand Hosking down as election moderator jumps to o...
    In just a day the petition calling on TVNZ to replace Hosking as the election moderator has jumped to over 2500, you can sign it here. The defence that the Right are trying to run here is that John Campbell...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • When the mainstream media go feral: the descent into sheer farce, according...
    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting: MIKE HOSKING FOR PM?
    Yes indeed. Mike Hosking is for the PM. And now he’s able to do even more as moderator (or should that be immoderator) of TVNZ’s election debates. Here at the Coalition for Better Broadcasting we feel it’s pretty safe to say that...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • The lie that “There is no alternative” to neo-liberal economic policies
    Supporters of President Maduro in Venezuela rally   Since the 1980s we have had drubbed into our heads that there was no alternative to the economic and social policies unleashed at that time. It even had it’s own acronym – TINA. The...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • A Kanaky tale of mining skulduggery and environmental courage
    Florent Eurisouké … still campaigning against mining. Photo: Del Abcede/PMC David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific AN EXTRAORDINARY story of mining skulduggery and a courageous struggle by indigenous Kanak environmental campaigners has been captured in a poignant new documentary,...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • UNBREAKING: The list of questions Mike Hosking will use in first TVNZ leade...
    “Good evening ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the first TVNZ leaders debate being held live in the gloriously beautiful Sky City ball room. It’s such a beautiful building boys and girls, we are so blessed to have Sky City...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Internet Party Party review
      I have been to A LOT of political party functions in my time, and they tend to be dull affairs at the best of times but what is happening with Internet MANA is something quite exciting. I went to...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Dear Seven Sharp – after learning Hosking will be the leaders debate ...
    I have to be honest, I had made the decision last night  to accept Seven Sharp’s hastily offered opportunity to appear on their show after I savagely criticised the bullshit whitewash story they did on John Key’s favourite far right hate speech...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates Wednesday, 23 Jul 2014 | Press Release This is another reminder that the National Government does not care about the survival of the Maui’s dolphin National...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Message from CTU President Helen Kelly
    MIL OSI – Source: Unite Union – Headline: Message from CTU President Helen Kelly Dear MikeThere’s only 43 days until September 3, when voting in the General Election starts. The last day to vote is September 20.Thanks heaps for signing...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour
    MIL OSI – Source: Mana Movement – Headline: MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour Posted on July 23, 2014 by admin in Joe Carolan, Press Releases“Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week”,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • We must act to save our dolphins
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: We must act to save our dolphins A new report makes it clear for the urgent need to protect Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins while arguing  it is clear that there is no...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • School told to manipulate national standards data
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: School told to manipulate national standards data Parents can have little confidence in the Government’s National Standards after an Auckland school was told to manipulate its data so it added up, Labour’s...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Regional economies must have tailored plans
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Regional economies must have tailored plans News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Auditor General slams Shared Services project
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Auditor General slams Shared Services project The Auditor-General’s Office could not have been more damning about the 18 months spent on the Central Agency Shared Services (CASS) project at the Finance and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato The potential loss of up to 114 jobs from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton is a massive blow to the Waikato region which has...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital The decision to reject the proposed flyover at the Basin Reserve must be taken as an opportunity to properly fund Wellington’s transport future and must...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Indonesia: New President Widodo must make good on human rights pledges
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: Indonesia: New President Widodo must make good on human rights pledges Indonesia’s new President Joko Widodo must deliver on campaign promises to improve Indonesia’s dire human rights situation, Amnesty International said....
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Communities in Sierra Leone turn their backs on female genital mutilation
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: Communities in Sierra Leone turn their backs on female genital mutilation While activists gather in London to discuss strategies to tackle female genital mutilation, communities across Sierra Leone have been taking...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • The Gambia: Activists mark 20 years of iron-fisted repression
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: The Gambia: Activists mark 20 years of iron-fisted repression The Gambian government must abolish the laws and iron fisted practices that have resulted in two decades of widespread human rights violations,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • A blog from the front lines of Palestine: It’s time for a new narrative
    I don’t know if I follow trouble or if trouble follows me, but somehow I seem to have found myself near one of the world’s hotspots again. The difference this time is that instead of sitting in some obscure location,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – The Path Ahead
    It’s well established that Labour has had a difficult couple of weeks. Getting back on to a successful path requires our focus to shift from looking inwards to outwards, heightened discipline, and inner conviction. While my assessment of New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Employers liquidating companies to avoid paying minimum entitlements
    Across the union movement we have seen a number of documented cases now where companies are liquidating their business in order to avoid their legal obligations, in terms of paying the minimum entitlements to their workers. The most recent example...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Carolan : Positively Controversial
    The protest in Auckland last weekend that the NZ Herald claimed was attend by only a hundred people. Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week. A good start would be for all their...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Forest & Bird supports Fish and Game’s freshwater advocacy
    The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird is concerned over allegations the Fish & Game Council has been threatened over its advocacy for freshwater quality....
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Time for Epsom to say “no deal”
    “Epsom voters will be disgusted by the deal announced today to try and once again gift their electorate to the ACT Party”, says Labour candidate for Epsom Michael Wood....
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Petition for release the of seven Bah
    At the invitation of the Honourable Annette King the New Zealand Bahá'í community is presenting a petition to the House of Representatives asking the NZ government to demand the release of the seven former leaders of the Baha’i community in...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Capital gains in the capital city
    Victoria University will today be hosting a public debate on the merits of more comprehensive capital gains tax—a step which taxation expert Associate Professor Dr David White considers would be beneficial for New Zealand. Organised by student group Beta Alpha...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Te Kupenga supports efforts of anti-violence campaigner
    Te Kupenga Whakaoti Mahi Patunga – National Network of Stopping Violence Services (Te Kupenga) wholeheartedly endorses statements made by DJ, Kickboxer and Anti-Violence Campaigner Richie Hardcore this morning on TV3’s Firstline about the role of men...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • iPredict Ltd2014 Election Update #28
    The chances of a fiscal surplus in 2014/15 continue to plunge and are down to 50%, according to the combined wisdom of the 7000 registered traders on New Zealand’s online predictions market, iPredict. The forecast surplus is now just 0.22%...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • TPPA is a bad idea
    “Currently New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam, the USA, Japan, Malaysia, Canada, and Mexico are still negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. Officially talks finished last August, but the reality is that they keep...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Getting privacy right in our data future
    Privacy Commissioner John Edwards welcomes the release of the New Zealand Data Futures Forum’s report....
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Conference on Democracy, Ethics and the Public Good
    Conference on Democracy, Ethics and the Public Good A conference is to be held in Wellington on 1 and 2 August with the aim of starting a NZ-wide discussion about the quality of our democracy. The conference is hosted jointly...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Paddock to plate, and smart roads possible
    New Zealand’s international brand and exports could grow significantly with the creation of a data sharing ‘eco-system’ according to a paper released by the NZ Data Futures Forum today....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Ngapuhi wants to overthrow Maori King
    Ngapuhi is planning a hui for the end of the year – organised by iwi leader David Rankin – in which the future of the King Movement will be discussed....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Housing warrant of fitness little help for sick children
    A housing warrant of fitness has been promoted as a way of preventing sickness among children in poverty. The attached report shows that such a regime would have little impact on health outcomes but would come at a considerable cost,...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Upcoming Fabian Events in Auckland
    Sue Bradford ’s PhD thesis, 'A major left wing think tank in Aotearoa—an impossible dream or a call to action?' looked at why no major left wing think tank has developed in Aotearoa and whether the left in 2010-2013 was...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Senior Citizens, Not Senile Citizens
    The Taxpayers’ Union is questioning the merits and costs of the “ No car? No problem! Getting around your community without a car” brochure, released by the Office for Senior Citizens. The brochure’s purpose is to explain to senior citizens...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • NZ Troops Hone Their Skills in Queensland
    Around 260 New Zealand troops are on a 25-day Australian-led warfighting exercise in Townsville, Northern Queensland....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Maritime Union backs Green Party call for shipping lanes
    The Maritime Union is backing the Green Party’s policy to implement compulsory shipping lanes for coastal shipping, announced today....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Auckland Council Bypasses Public, Ditches Rodeo Ban
    Auckland Council Bypasses Public, Ditches Rodeo Ban The Auckland Council has announced that they are abandoning the rodeo ban on council land, put into place in 2008. This was done with virtually no consultation, says SAFE, the animal advocacy organisation....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Tolley and Coleman urged to meet West Papuan visitor
    Ministers Tolley and Coleman urged to meet West Papuan visitor Police Minister Anne Tolley and Defence Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman have a rare opportunity this week to gain first-hand knowledge about Indonesian police and military activities in West...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Minister Right to Give Fish & Game a Serve
    Reacting to Radio New Zealand’s report concerning allegations that Conservation Minister Nick Smith warned the Fish and Game Council that it acts like a 'rabid NGO', Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says:...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Government needs to get Fishing reform bill passed now
    The Maritime Union is urging the Government to push through a Bill reforming the fishing industry....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Ivory trade laws look set to tighten following petition
    A petition mounted by an Auckland schoolteacher has won the support of a powerful Select Committee and has moved the New Zealand closer towards a fully enforceable ivory trading ban....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Bilingual guide a demonstration of leadership
    “Waikato River Restoration: A Bilingual Guide” to the Waikato River that saw Tainui Waikato, Landcare Trust and the Waikato River Authority working together is a demonstration of rangatiratanga or leadership says Race Relations Commissioner...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Georgina Beyer to stand for MANA in Te Tai Tonga
    "It's great to have Georgie on board" said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and Te Tai Tokerau MP. "She's strong-minded, stands up to be counted, and has fought for the rights of those who haven't had any - and won. That...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Sir Bob Harvey
    SUSAN Sir Bob Harvey was behind the transformation of Norm Kirk, and one of New Zealand's most popular Prime Ministers. He also advised Bill Rowling, David Lange and Helen Clark, the latter as Labour Party President. Wild Westie a new...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Rod Drury
    Xero boss Rod Drury told TVNZ’s Q+A programme what the political parties are offering at this election is ‘all too small.’ “There's no policy, all it is a bunch of incremental stuff. “All too small. What we want to do...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Gerry Brownlee
    Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee Rules Out Fastracking Auckland’s City Rail Loop Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee told TV1’s Q+A programme this morning that he won’t be bringing forward an Auckland City Rail loop based on new figures showing...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Owen interviews Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey
    Lisa Owen interviews Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey Headlines: Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey suggests “we can move on some” changes to welfare for New Zealanders in Australia New Zealanders “brothers and sisters” who make “a massive contribution”,...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Flavell and Harawira on The Nation
    Lisa Owen interviews Maori Party leader Te Ururoa Flavell and Mana leader Hone Harawira Headlines: Hone Harawira says realistically his Mana Party can take three Maori seats, Te Ururoa Flavell sticks to prediction that Maori Party will win all seven....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • The Nation 26,27 July: Flavell & Harawira, Joe Hockey
    On The Nation this weekend…. With the Maori seats primed to play a pivotal role this election, Torben Akel reports from the key battlegrounds and meets the top contenders. Then the Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell and Mana Party...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Announcement of New Zealand First Candidate for Rangitīkei
    New Zealand First has endorsed Dr Romuald (‘Rom’) Rudzki as the candidate for the Rangitīkei Electorate in the 2014 General Election....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Labour Offer Len Brown a Hotel Tax
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming the Labour Party's plan to allow councils to levy new 'pillow taxes' and regional petrol taxes. Reacting to this afternoon’s NZ Herald report Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union ,...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Cell phone evidence a first
    Cell phone evidence a first Evidence gathered solely from a cell phone has been used for the first time to convict a Hastings man for possessing child sexual abuse pictures. Michael Lawrence Worsnop, a 29-year-old orchard worker pleaded guilty to...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • New Zealand Aid Worker Helping in Gaza
    A New Zealand Red Cross nurse working in Gaza says she has never experienced anything like the current conflict in her long aid work career....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Parking officers deserve safety at work
    The union representing the Auckland Transport parking officer severely beaten on July 17 says everyone has a right to go about their job without fear for their safety....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Caritas Aotearoa NZ to provide Gaza humanitarian aid
    Caritas Jerusalem is providing medical assistance, food and other necessities to the thousands of vulnerable people affected by the escalating conflict in Gaza, and Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand is contributing an initial $20,000 to support the humanitarian...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • ALCP challenges parties to support Charlotte’s Web
    The leader of the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party Julian Crawford is calling on all other political parties to state their position on using cannabis oil to treat pediatric epilepsy....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Oxfam accepts cheque from Pacific Corporation Foundation
    Oxfam New Zealand has accepted a cheque for almost $1000 today from the Pacific Corporation Foundation toward recovery efforts in the Solomon Islands, following April’s flash flooding that left thousands homeless....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Draft report and decision – Pūhoi to Warkworth proposal
    The Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Wellsford Road of National Significance: Pūhoi to Warkworth section Board of Inquiry has released its draft report and decision....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • New Zealanders willing to pay tax to protect dolphins
    A report released this week shows a large majority of New Zealanders want Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins protected and they are prepared to pay for it....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Stop Smart Meters
    “The Democrats for Social Credit Party (DSC) wholeheartedly endorses the Stop Smart Meters campaign for a moratorium on installations of smart meters until the technology is proven not be a risk to health, and until home owners are given a...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Maori Roll Electors Urged to Vote Strategically
    Voters enrolled in the seven Maori electorates must learn to maximize their influence by voting strategically, according to the Maori Party candidate for Te Tai Tokerau, Rev Te Hira Paenga....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Politicians Ignore Families’ Concerns on Street Prostitution
    Family First NZ says that politicians are ignoring the concerns of families, lack the will to take appropriate action, and are happy to drag the ongoing problem of street prostitution into the next parliamentary term....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Plunket celebrates Te Wiki o te Reo Māori
    Plunket is proud to celebrate Te Wiki o te Reo Māori (21-27 July), with Plunket people across the country among several thousand New Zealanders taking part and increasing their kete of knowledge in te reo....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Coleman must quit or be sacked over Dotcom case
    Immigration New Zealand has done the right thing in distancing itself from Jonathan Coleman’s claims that ministers were not aware of FBI involvement in Kim Dotcom’s residency application, says the Internet Party. Internet Party leader Laila Harré...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Auckland Councillors, Not Emperors
    25 JULY 2014 Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland Councillors have voted to keep their ratepayer-funded business class travel perks, and considered new rules that would have exempted councillors from Auckland City's parking charges, Taxpayers’...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Cunliffe Looks Dodgy Lunching with Sex Offender
    Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig says that David Cunliffe's social meeting with a known sex offender while on holiday "looks pretty dodgy."...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Taxpayers’ Union Back LGNZ Calls For Greater Transparency
    The Taxpayers’ Union is backing Local Government New Zealand’s calls for the Official Information Act to be extended to cover the Local Government Commission. Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Lecture series to provide insight into 2014 election
    Could National’s refusal to reform MMP lead to the defeat of the government? Is the media providing voters with the information they require to make an informed electoral decision? What directions might John Key’s leadership take if he secures...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • National Rally Against Factory Farming
    Animal advocates and members of the public all over New Zealand will unite for a ‘National Day of Action Against Factory Farming’ Saturday, tomorrow 26 July in response to two recent exposés that showed horrific conditions on pig factory farms....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Women in Politics Finds Support at Conference
    Women in Politics, a brand-new organisation for New Zealand women in political office, was met with overwhelming support at the 2014 Local Government New Zealand Conference held this weekend in Nelson....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
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