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Species of Kiwi

Written By: - Date published: 7:24 pm, February 16th, 2013 - 67 comments
Categories: class, Deep stuff - Tags: , ,

In comments Ad proposed this interesting taxonomy of Kiwi social types.

It’s an exercise that takes place in the context of social inequality. It’s unfair, it’s highly damaging, and it’s at it’s highest level ever in NZ. Ad wrote: “my intent was to broaden out your discussion from straight vertical income calibrations to this kinds of lives we see ourselves within, and how inequality might matter to all of them. One of Treasury’s core missions is to make us all wealthier. But “wealthier” might express itself in different realms and definitions of personal freedom and generative activity.”

Here’s the original comment:


In my coarse view New Zealand now has a set of lives and subcultures that increasingly do not intersect.

1. The Shareholders
Those earning over $150,000 per person, with multiple properties and regular trips, who glide over the world and who can be seen in Life and Leisure magazine. Most likely found in Matakana, North Shore, Remuera, and Palm Beach. Or retiring to Cornwall. Frightfully fit, or at least vain.

2. The Educated bourgeoise property owners.
Have degrees, salaries, as much mobility as they could wish for, live in inner, East, and Auckland and North Shore and North Auckland, plus the few remaining in Maori Hill, Karori, Khandallah. Best calibrated by the quality of their landscaping and age of their car. Retiring to Wanaka, Arrowtown, Queenstown, Tauranga, and Gold Coast. With standard “economic conservative and moral liberal” values, at least deep into the evening.

3. The Rural Conservative
Live in smaller towns, highly sensitive to commodity and dollar-cross shifts. A decreasing strata found in Balclutha, Gore, Hawkes Bay, Bay of PLenty, Waikato, Masterton, and Kerkeri.

4. The Outsiders
The strata who live in the black or grey economies, often rural in Northland or North Island East Coast, bumping along the bottom, living from cash job to cash job with no thought for mobility. Often found in the urban-rural villages such as Waikato Heads, Ahipara, Houhora, deep forested enclaves, Golden Bay, and Coromandel village.

5. The Unstable
Those one injury or one bad payday away from bankruptcy or credit card default, under incredible daily stress. Found everywhere one cares not to look, but particularly in places such as Mataura, Manurewa, Avondale, Dunedin South, the far north. And out of rural slums, around Kawerau and other dying towns, in all the jails, often out of inchoate desperation or damage to one’s own life.

6. The Old Poor
In rest homes of dubious quality, particularly in Auckland’s west, Tauranga, Dunedin’s periphery, utterly beholden to the state’s largesse, quickly draining through their equity if they had any, sustained within incredible solitude and resultant institutionalised neuroses. Often with one partner dead. Have Readers’ Digests in their toilets for reading.

7. The Old Doughty
Those who had retired, kept their house, garden towards daily self-sufficiency through a lifetime of frugality, bump along on the NZSuper reasonably, whose parents and they themselves instilled astonishing discipline in to their daily lives, and who have dedicated this same ethic to their children, who have largely left the country. Still bottle their own fruit. Often retired public servants from a bygone age, such as teachers.

8. The Immigrant Family
A relentless telic drive to redemption through work that enables at least one of their children to gain
mobility to at least one of the classes above, keeping at bay the shame of ever returning to the origin country, but largely sustaining multiple jobs, if they get them, on close to minimum wage. Whose children gain some of this drive in turn, or fall into and out of the underworld.

9. Highly mobile Greeny Liberals
Found generally in Grey Lynn, Titirangi, Aro Valley, and a few in Ponsonby. The have huge expectations, great hope in the redemptive capacity of New Zealand’s musical digital, and visual arts, and buy everything possible at farmers markets. Subscribe to Good Magazine. Have some intersection with the Outsiders if they are individual contractors to the creative sector.

You can see by the way I have framed them which cultures are in the ascendant, which in the decline. The census will show this mobility in stark relief. Each one of those is a kind of politics; each crudely drawn. We know who we are, who has been missed out.

The normative direction to the original post is: who do we want more of? What kind of people are we becoming? Do we like it? Can we really do anything about it?

For me the deeper questions are along: does MMP and fractal democratic representation simply ameliorate splitter capitalism? Would FPP make mobility-from-poverty and mobility-from-middleclass more stark?

And after that: is our political system now so weak in its instruments that fewer and fewer will be able to change their strata?

67 comments on “Species of Kiwi”

  1. geoff 1

    Hey great post, you’ve definitely hit upon a few groupings I’d agree with. Care to put some
    population estimates along with each category?

  2. Interesting comment Ad. Where does Waitakere man fit in?

    In terms of urban liberals I see that the electorates with the highest green vote in 2011 were …

    (drum roll)

    Wellington Central (where the green party vote was higher than the labour party vote for the first time ever …), Rongotai, Auckland Central, Dunedin North, Port Hills, Mt Albert, Ohariu and Dunedin South.

    These all have the following characteristics:

    1. They are all inner city seats (Port Hills is close).
    2. Apart from Ohariu they are all Labour held electorate seats.

    Interestingly the Green vote in New Lynn and Waitakere, which I thought would be hot beds of Green support, was not so good. Perhaps Cunliffe’s and Sepuloni’s (Pillay’s) performances reduced the desire of local lefties to change their support.

    • geoff 2.1

      So labour is losing a lot of their traditional voters to the Greens? Is this why Labour caucus seem to be pursuing a light blue strategy?

      • mickysavage 2.1.1

        Um caucus seems to be on a focus group mandated approach to politics.

        The Greens appear to be on a principled approach to politics. They appear to be picking up a number of urban liberals who can be good activists and also have the resources to contribute to a political movement.

        If it was up to me I would forget about the focus groups …

        • Afewknowthetruth 2.1.1.1

          Which principle is that [the Greens are pursuing]? Burn up the last of the fossil fuel reserves and bring on abrupt climate change -in other words burn up the planet we live on- via promotion of economic growth, Ponzi economics and manufacturing?

      • karol 2.1.2

        I think it’s parliamentary Labour’s increasingly light blue approach that has caused many of us to shift from voting Labour to Green.

    • QoT 2.2

      Where does Waitakere man fit in?

      Category 10: Mythical Shit Made Up By Political Commentators To Justify Their Arguments.

    • karol 2.3

      Well, I have been voting Green plus Cunliffe in the New Lynn electorate. As I’m now moving back to New Lynn (having finally been lucky enough to find somewhere a little better to rent than my current place for a reasonable-ish rent), I will probably be voting thus in 2014. I am not blue-green as many like to label us ex-Labour-now-Green party voters. I just see the Greens as having a more solidly left agenda, processes, narrative and policies than parliamentary Labour

      • Coronial Typer 2.3.1

        You’ve done we’ll with that rent; property prices are going up super-fast in New Lynn. In no small part due to the New Lynn transit station built a couple of years ago, and the massive urban regeneration occurring around its neighbouring streets.

        On top of the new 4 storey car part will be 10 floors of apartments, many under $400,000, and all selling fast as well. Lynn Mall will double in size within 3 years (with its shops facing to the street). The Mayor of Auckland will open the medical centre and car park and street rebuild in a couple of weeks.

        That was all leveraged by central and local government working together, and did not require direct transfers of wealth through income tax or capital gains tax or social welfare.

        It can be done.

        • karol 2.3.1.1

          property prices are going up super-fast in New Lynn.

          *Sigh* When is this madness going to end? So we have another suburb with a solid industrial and working class history, in the process of another take-over by those with money (or debt availability).

          I now feel really at home with New Lynn, and being into Auckland’s history, wanting to learn more – while those only interested in the best investment or speculation sliding in over the top of all that.

          However, I do think some of the development looks promising – aiming to integrate medium density residential living with pedestrian and cycling spaces, shared spaces, and available outdoor recreation areas. And all that in close proximity to public transport and retail enterprises.

          Pity that it’s likely to become more of a place for the middle classes to benefit from such an integrated community. I also know some long term residents who are worried about being pushed out of the area by the developments. Nevertheless, there’s still a lot of low income residents, and it’s quite multicultural.

          Interesting times, but also worrying.

    • JNCC 2.4

      Auckland Central is a National seat despite Jacinda’s best efforts.

  3. Lanthanide 3

    No one lives in Christchurch.

    • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 3.1

      Lanthanide
      Odd that. Is Christchurch now just part of the regions, to be unconsidered in the shadow of Auckland’s bright fireworks of growth and prospects for deals?

      I also notice a missing group the Well-paid aspirational middle class parents and child avoiders.
      I know a few in and around this group. Can we have a summary of their attitudes and pathways? What I notice is that they want now what their parents had to work for over a lifetime, and when they get it, decide they don’t want that and while they make up their mind as to what they want, shift back to Mum and Dad or at least lean on them. They are reluctant to commit themselves to a settled future, believing there are all sorts of alternative possibilities and unable to consider that fate may cause a decline in those. The cargo cult mentality perhaps?

      • Coronial Typer 3.1.1

        Probably best not to presume who lives in Christchurch until after the census.

        Nose, the glaring absence for me was younger (pre 30) people who have a reasonable education, fantastic tech savvy, great sports equipment, and little aspiration at all. Incomprehensible to me.

        But gets to the point of the original post: how on earth do you generate meaningful policy for those who are quite fine as they are, thank you very much. Not easy.

        • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 3.1.1.1

          Not easy Coronial viper. I am afraid that Labour will be going for the easiest option – doing the Karl Rove thing where you ignore your dedicated voters and the needs of the country. You just go for the swinging middle vote after data mining to find out their names abd addresses, personal preferences and then you send them letters addressed to Dear John or Emily or whatever and also phone them in a friendly, respectful manner to ask their vision for themselves and the country.

          • Coronial Typer 3.1.1.1.1

            Like being stuck at the ballot box with a pen and going “hmmm, go for mildly worse but got us through the GFC and has a super charismatic leader, or a punt on getting mildly better, but with a most uninspiring leader?” Hope that isn’t me next time.

  4. Tim 4

    Brilliant. I’d make the following observations though.
    The ability for one to transition between subcultures can be heavily age-dependent, and/or as you note (in the case of say ‘The Unstable’), one pay day, heart attack or injury away from flopping down the food chain.
    As I wander through the streets of Wellington too, I often notice the same people at the same establishments night after night who, if they had to ‘cash up’ tomorrow would find themselves having to enter another sub-culture (this can sometimes include “The Shareholder”).
    It’s interesting too the ‘once were hippies’ – seeing where they are now, or the once were Onslow College trendy liberals who once proudly protested their left-wing leanings, yet now pretend not to see you when you offer them a cordial “hello” when walking down Marjoribanks Street. (Dare I suggest it – perhaps that’s where the Labour Party ‘old guard’ come from.)

  5. This is a descriptive taxonomy and doesn’t account for the social origins or trajectory of these ‘types’.
    The first 3 seem to be fractions of the national bourgeoisie. Capitalist owners (shareholders), property owners (speculators?) and capitalist farmers (rural conservatives). Bankers should be included in the second category as most banking profits also came from rural rent farming.
    They are in fact part of the same bourgeois class. They own the means of production and employ others to work for them. But only the farmers and manufacturers are productive of surplus. Bankers and property speculators are not.
    The story of the NZ capitalist class is the rise and fall of productive capital, and its takeover by unproductive parasitic capital. (It was always there in embryo since farmers had to speculate in land values to pay the banks).
    Agriculture and horticulture remains NZ comparative advantage but it has been internationalised into the hands of a global capitalist class of which the NZ part are the backers of the NACTs. Manufacturing is now largely internationalised in largely foreign hands. Banks never stopped being British and Aussie.
    As the wealth of the country is gambled by international casino capitalism its no wonder that there is huge confusion as to the social identity of the rest of us. Are we petty bourgeois, working class, Westies, underclass, Doughties, migrants, outsiders or what? White settler NZ has always been petty bourgeois in culture as the ideal was always self-employment. The ‘working class’ came and went as a state of mind. Bosses were small and state aided, and workers always tried to escape out of wage labour.
    But today we have a huge gap between the international bourgeoisie in all of its fractions, now dominated by the bankers, and a working class beset by massive divisions including what is now described as the ‘middle class’.
    Yet these differences are small in relation to the common fate of all those whose wages are falling and who middle class aspirations end in bankruptcy. All the categories above 4-9 are fractions of the working class. Self-employment is a form of disguised wage labour that either goes up via property speculation or down in debt.
    Those who are pushed down become marginalised as outsiders, old poor, retired, demonised underclass, alienated youth etc.
    Fortunately, some seek to reverse this process by making a virtue of necessity. Among them are educated un or under-employed who are the new leading political fraction of the working class in unions such as Unite and SFWU and parties of the Left.
    To paraphrase Marx, we are not determined by our history because we can consciously struggle to transcend it. This is the category ‘revolutionaries’.

    • Murray Olsen 5.1

      I like your analysis, Red Rattler. It shows what we have in common and who we should be fighting alongside, rather than dividing us into mythical tribes based on whether we recycle or not (or some other sociological detail). It goes deeper than surface appearances, which is what we as the wider left need to do.

    • karol 5.2

      Yes, good analysis red rattler. I agree with ad in general that there has been an increasing disconnect between various communities and layers in NZ.

      But, I also don’t see myself, or some others I know, in any of ad’s groups. I’m non-property owning educated middle class, single woman, living in a mixed class suburb of west Auckland, semi-retired, with some savings – and pensions – which have kept me from crashing since my significant accident 18 months ago. Am part outsider, part Old Doughty, with a little bit of instability.

      Red rattler’s class analysis is probably a better basis for identifying the current social and economic divisions. Ad’s reads more like the sort of consumerist categories favoured by marketers. RR adds, not only class analysis, but an lement of power differentials. Also there needs to be a recognition of social/cultural capital in the analysis – which accounts for cronyism (in the past AKA “old boys network”).

      In this there needs to be acknowledgement of how ethnicity, gender and cultural values play within and between the class divisions: e.g where do South Auckland Pasifikans people fit in? And the Immigrant Family group seems to focus on South East Asian and possibly Middle Eastern and some European immigrants. These have a high proportion of middle class people with middle class aspirations, education, values and aspirations, rather than diverse Pasifika people. A large proportion of Pasifika families were brought here to do working class jobs. Some have worked and educated their way into the middle class, but many still do the low paid kind of jobs that their parents did.

      • red rattler 5.2.1

        Re Murray and Karol comments.
        The link put up by Joe90 http://www.lrb.co.uk/v34/n07/john-lanchester/marx-at-193
        is relevant.
        The writer says that Marx today got most things right, but that society it much more complex today than Marx could have envisaged.

        Yet the examples of ‘complexity’ are such as a more ‘complex’ class system with lots of mixed identities rather than based on any one class position. Eg he claims that workers can also be bourgeois by virtue of being in pension funds. Tell that to the so-called middle class in the US whose Pension Funds have been stolen by owners! This is perhaps the basis of his claim that in the West the bourgeoisie are the majority class!!

        Second, that the working class is fragmented between and within countries rather than being internationally united force. Eg he says the massive Foxconn workforce in China won a big wage increase not by striking but through a NYT article exposing the rash of suicides. So Apple was forced to respond to global public opinion of a world working class (of consumers yes) that condemned its super-exploitation. Working class unity is also expressed in its power of global consumption.

        His third example is Marx failure to predict the destruction of nature. This is outright wrong. Marx saw capitalism becoming increasingly destructive of the forces of production which are in the main nature, both as the source of raw materials, and human labour power. Global warming etc is the working out of this prediction in the deep structures of nature, just as is the rising global movement of humanity as workers to stop the destruction of capitalism.

        The relevant point here is that writer says that what let Marx down was his rejection of ‘empiricism’ as a preoccupation with surface forms rather than deep structures. I would say that this is the writers problem. It leads him to say that the nature of capitalism has qualitatively changed as it surface complexity has increased. Yet the deeper dynamics that are driving capitalism continue to polarise classes in the extreme and I would suggest make Marx even more relevant at age 193.

    • Coronial Typer 5.3

      I just wonder about the degree of desire between those who own rentable property, and those who don’t. The original post looks like its trying to spread out a discussion about inequality, along a simple vertical axis of income and assets, into something which asks: how many groupings are in fact happy the way they are? This is after all, paradoxically, both a highly entrepeneurial culture, and also one renowned in the world as a “lifestyle choice”. Where you get of the career mobility, glamour, and hustle of Sydney or Singapore or New York. Beyond the extremes of the slender segment who are incredibly avaricious, grasping and driven, do most people feel that they have chosen the segment they occupy, and are generally content within its tolerance limits?

  6. Pete 6

    There was a book a few years ago called 8 Tribes: The Hidden Classes of New Zealand that had a similar premise, albeit along social lines, not so much economic ones.

    The North Shore Tribe – Achieving

    The ambitious, hard-working, heavily-mortgaged inhabitants of the great suburban jungle for whom looking good and keeping up appearances are fundamentally important. They survive in the jungle by constantly moving ahead, up through the ranks of job, car, house, street and suburb.

    The Grey Lynn Tribe – Intellectual

    The highly educated intelligentsia who value ideas above material things and intellectualise every element of their lives. Their most prized possession is a painting by the artist of the moment, they frequent film festivals, feel guilty about discussing property values and deep down are uneasy about their passion for reality television.

    The Balclutha Tribe – Staunch

    The tribal mind of the Kiwi heartland, the provincial conservatives, who see themselves as a source of stability and commonsense, bearers of on-going connection with the land – solid, reliable and down to earth, but deceptively smart and just quietly, very competitive.

    The Remuera Tribe – Entitled

    The round-vowelled children of privilege for whom breeding is the greatest virtue, manners really do make a difference, money is great if it’s old but crass if it’s new, and what school you went to defines the rest of your life.

    The Otara Tribe – Community

    Urban, often immigrant, often Polynesian, community-minded people where family is paramount and Church is likely to play a central social role, or if not Church then another club-based group. The sense of belonging and support structures are very strong as is the pressure to ‘do the right thing’ and uphold appearances.

    The Raglan Tribe – Free spirited

    The independent spirits who value the ability to live a life according to their own priorities, not as part of the common consumer herd. They tend to be highly sensate and internally focussed – hedonists, or spiritual journeyers, or fitness fanatics or adrenaline junkies. Many Kiwis join the Raglan tribe for three weeks at Christmas.

    The Cuba St Tribe – Avant Garde

    Members of the urban avant garde who constantly seek out the cutting edge of cool, regard new, original and unique as the greatest virtues and fear being labelled ‘mainstream’ more than anything else. If you’re a student of mass culture, watch these people to see the direction that herd will move in next.

    The Papatoetoe Tribe – Unpretentious

    Urban working people who hate “wankers” and define themselves by their unwillingness to think of themselves as better than their mates – or anyone else for that matter – the classic “state house and jug of beer” Kiwis.

    • Coronial Typer 6.1

      Even in the few years since that book came out, we have changed. Clearly the truth will come out in the census, but I can definitely see distinct subsets emerging within older people for example. There, what truly matters is a mix of asset ownership, health, service proximity, and social networks. While NZ Super alleviates significant older poverty, one can see that there’s little point thinking about mobility from (say) 60; it’s set. For over half of New Zealand, from that point one still has at least a quarter of their life still to live.

      Elderly capacity to sustain the segment they are now in, is under constant threat as their role in bringing up grandchildren increases fast, as health lurches episodically, as savings (if any after our successive crises since 1987) are undermined.

      And yet NZ Super and the healthcare system and the Goldcard system support this segment (merely as an example) more than any other. Shifts in tax or asset taxes generally mean little. What remains is to sustain their networks, and remain as best they can within the lives they have chosen. S a simple class analysis, even for this highly assisted group, isn’t sufficient.

  7. Afewknowthetruth 7

    Taranaki no longer exists.

    That does mean the rest of NZ no longer gets any natural gas, and the balance of payments is thrown further into the red with all the indigenous oil no longer of importance. Also, a vast amount of engineering disappears, along with a substantial portion of the dairy sector..

    All in all quite a good scenario, I guess; fast collapse from the height of industrial empire into sustainable living for the few who have a food supply.and fairly rapid starvation for the rest.

  8. xtasy 8

    I have commented this again and again, like a broken record:

    NZ is DIVIDED, very divided, and it is getting worse by the day, and the government, the whole system as it is now, is nurturing and reinforcing it.

    It is bloody time to create an environment and society, where members start talking with each other again, not just about what the job entails, what needs to be done at work on the day, and what the last cricket or rugby game was about. Nor do we need to focus on the new “hottest” show – or opposite sex member – on the television, or in real life around us, to try and get what life is about.

    People have grown up divided now, the younger gen X and Y do not have much understanding and experience at all of “belonging”, collective efforts, common sharing and responsibilities. So society has intentionally been created to be divided, divisive, commercialised, consumerist and non-caring, I see no easy solution to change this.

    Well, a kind of meteorite swarm hit Russia yesterday, that may “wake” a few up and count themselves lucky to be alive and well, it may create a sense of urgency to reconnect, same as the Christchurch earthquakes did. But can we not get this shit working together without such disasters, or are humans just such nasty pieces of advanced “animals”, that they need to bleed, suffer and face death, to come to their senses?

    I am close to bloody despair about what goes on here in NZ, and in the world as a whole.

    • Afewknowthetruth 8.1

      When you consider that humans deliberately construct equipment to inflict pain on other humans for hours, days or weeks on end before killing them, i.e. torturing to death, you can say with considerable justification that humans are the nastiest species extant on this planet.

      When you consider that people have sent children down coal mines (along with donkeys) to pull cart-loads of coal along nearly pitch black tunnels you can say that humans are the nastiest species extant on this planet. When you consider that similar practices take place in modern times in the more destitute parts of Africa in order that global corporations can make bigger profits you can say that humans are the nastiest species extant on this planet.

      When you consider that humans are causing the extinction of dozens of species every DAY you can say that industrial humans are the nastiest species extant on this planet.

      When you consider that ‘developed’ nations have economies predicated on continuous abuse of animals, i.e. factory farming, you can say that industrial humans are the nastiest species extant on this planet.

      The ‘good news’ is that Gaia is in the process of eliminating the industrialised human species via resource depletion, abrupt climate change, acidification of the oceans etc. – all self-inflicted by industrial humans of course! That makes industrial humans the stupidest species extant on this planet.

      • RedLogix 8.1.1

        Interestingly though we are also a species sufficiently self-aware to eventually realise all of those horrors you mention are wrong … and stop doing them.

      • johnm 8.1.2

        Go! Afewknowthetruth!

        You can throw in all the wars and genocides as well and stuff like slavery and the madness of huge stockpiles of nuclear weapons! :-( Which our Generals more than capable of using.
        And the cruel heartless slaughter of Whales by those nice japs that Seashepherd is trying to block, they’re in a sanctuary but humankind still can’t leave them in peace.

    • Coronial Typer 8.2

      Kind of reminds me what one of the French commentators said in the middle of the 1968 riots and general strike. “Without tv, or work, people came out of their houses, children played in the street, there were few cars, people talked across the fence, and remembered what is was to become human again.”

      • Tim 8.2.1

        @ CT: Would that still be the case though? I’d imagine somehow that if the cellular network, or power grid suffered a catastrophic failure that put it out of action for more than a week, we’d probably have mass suicide.

  9. RedLogix 9

    NZ is DIVIDED, very divided, and it is getting worse by the day, and the government, the whole system as it is now, is nurturing and reinforcing it.

    Mainly because when women started to participate in the workforce more it came at the cost of allowing far too much of our community and social life to decay.

    I agree that most people under the age of 50 have no idea for instance of how to run some simple collective entity … like a tramping club for instance. Yet if you attended one of our meetings you'd find representatives of every social grouping you mention all happily mingling.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Mainly because when women started to participate in the workforce more it came at the cost of allowing far too much of our community and social life to decay.

      Yep. We need incomes which enable one parent to stay at home each day to look after their children, should they choose to.

    • MeToo 9.2

      Except, of course, working class women have always worked. Looking after other people’s children, doing piecemeal sewing at bit-rates, doing laundry, growing and selling produce, working alongside the men in their lives in whatever their work was, or factory work while another working class woman did the childcare.

      I look back at my female antecedents and the only one who didn’t work in paid employment while she had children at home or school was my maternal grandmother. She had her first child in 1937, husband worked for the government and they lived in a state house and were incredibly frugal. Supplemented wages with a housecow and a garden; all clothes were home made. But her mother and my other great-grandmothers? All worked, all needed the extra income. My other grandmother? Did factory work, despite spitting out children, because her husband drank away his wages. And my mother was in the paid workforce, even with young children, in the early 1960s.

      • Colonial Viper 9.2.1

        Nice family anecdotes. But it speaks nothing to the hundreds of thousands of NZ women who were forced to leave the home for paid work out of necessity in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Creating a generation of latchkey kids which did not exist just a few years earlier.

        • Tim 9.2.1.1

          ….and so rather than categorising and defining various sub-cultures – which is probably quite useful in many ways – we’d be better off devising policy that ameliorates the negative aspects within each CHANGEABLE sub-culture. (Admitedly Ad, one probablt first has to identify the characteristics before devising policy, but we do know the shit that’s been happening in recent times – just as we did during Rogernomics and Ruthenasia eras).
          Like Karol (I think), I, and many I know fit across a couple (2 or 3 actually) sub-cultures – especially if I want to place myself in an individual context, or participate in the wider context f whanau.
          Actually, now I think about it – job well done as a parent when each of the offspring fit into an alternative sub-culture box.

          BUT – as I said in the original comment above: Brilliant (in THIS time and place).

          • Coronial Typer 9.2.1.1.1

            I’m now at the airport and on the way here I listened to Pete Seeger singing Little Boxes Made of TickyTacky. His song is not only about manufacturing subjecthoods like any other mass production. It’s also about how some are complicit in the replication. Quite a few of those cartoon categories listed in the post don’t want to change. May not be satisfied, but sure are stable. So one point of the post I see is that talking about inequality is fine, but not everyone wants to change.

            Also, there’s ‘sideways violence'; the social force and violence applied when people seek to shift up, or into another group. Stigma. Parochialism. Membership. Carpet-bagging. Envy. Exclusion. Making and example of. Manners. “Gauche”. Immigrant status. Language exclusion. Any kind of reason to not let you in.

            We are now so so far beyond the egalitarian dream of few strata, and permanent strata porosity, that many prefer to be within their milieu, knowing they will never get better or different. Which makes policy hard, ameliorating difference, even by wealth, really hard. So many prefer to remain held by their segment, or just leave the country.

  10. Afewknowthetruth 10

    A better way of categorising Kiwis is as follows.

    1. Those who know Peak Oil is in the process of demolishing traditional economic arrangements and are preparing for the inevitable collapse.

    2. Those who know about Peak Oil but are doing nothing to prepare.

    3. Those who know about Peak Oil but pretend it won’t affect them.

    4 Those who know about Peak Oil but ignore the whole issue and pretend that present economic arrangements will continue far into the future.

    5. Those who are so ‘away with the fairies’ they have never heard of Peak Oil

    We can then change the theme to Abrupt Climate Change and list the same five groupings.

    And change the theme to Fractional Reserve Banking and list the same five groupings.

    And change the theme to The Sixth Great Species Extinction and list the same five groupings.

    99% of the populace fall into groups 2 to 5 on all counts.

    • Lanthanide 10.1

      6. Those who know about Peak Oil and are over-reacting to it, forgetting that humans are the most adaptable species on the planet and that when the shit hits the fan, things can change very quickly without collapsing.

      6a. Those who know about Peak Oil, but don’t know about history and pretend that humans can’t live without fossil fuels, despite fossil fuels being the exception not the rule.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        6a. Those who know about Peak Oil, but don’t know about history and pretend that humans can’t live without fossil fuels, despite fossil fuels being the exception not the rule.

        Hmmmm. You do know that although you are strictly correct, the pre-oil population of this planet was less than 1.5B.

        And for most of the last 20,000 years of modern human civilisation was well under 1B.

        That suggests that most of us are living well into overshoot right now.

        6. Those who know about Peak Oil and are over-reacting to it, forgetting that humans are the most adaptable species on the planet and that when the shit hits the fan, things can change very quickly without collapsing.

        Agreed. It will be a gradual generational decline, not a collapse over one or two years.

        • Pete 10.1.1.1

          It will be a gradual generational decline, not a collapse over one or two years.

          That’s the nature of peak oil. The tap being gradually turned off, which should give us time to adapt. It’s not that oil will run out overnight, it’s that it will go into decline after reaching a peak – which some models say has already happened. I do like some of the work being done with the Transition Towns movement on this and obviously a more public transport friendly government is needed, along with support for locally produced goods. But I can’t help but get the impression that some of those who are advocating on peak oil issues are anarcho-primitivists in disguise.

          • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1.1

            Yep. One could also argue that “cheap” oil (let’s say, under US$50) has already been depleted and will not be coming back. Also note that its the % of GDP (or household income) that energy takes up which is going to be key, not its nominal pricing. As incomes deflate, a litre of petrol at a fixed price becomes relatively more expensive and unaffordable.

            But I can’t help but get the impression that some of those who are advocating on peak oil issues are anarcho-primitivists in disguise.

            Some of us advocate on energy depletion issues to ensure that’s the feudal road we avoid :)

          • Rogue Trooper 10.1.1.1.2

            :)

        • Lanthanide 10.1.1.2

          “Hmmmm. You do know that although you are strictly correct, the pre-oil population of this planet was less than 1.5B.

          And for most of the last 20,000 years of modern human civilisation was well under 1B.

          That suggests that most of us are living well into overshoot right now.”

          Certainly. However we both know that Afewknowthetruth is very extreme on this, saying humans as a species will be extinct by 2050. He has previously predicted in the comments on this site that by this time (2013), there would be people starving to death in Auckland due to lack of food.

          International trade on boats has existed for literally thousands of years. Trade over land has existed for literally thousands of years. In NZ it is very unlikely people are going to be literally starving to death.

          • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.2.1

            Agree that we are in a very good position here.

            AFKTT is a bit too keen on a sudden catastrophic collapse scenario. In NZ a gradual economic slowdown/depletion over many decades is much more likely.

            • Afewknowthetruth 10.1.1.2.1.1

              The timing of collapse is difficult to gauge. However, for Greece, Spain and a lot of other countries it is effectively all over, with general unemployment rates well over 20%and rising, and youth unemployment rates well over 40% and rising,….. and no prospect whatsoever of recovery of the present economic system only a recovery FROM the present economic system. Note that Germany, supposedly a ‘power-house’ has now joined the list of nations going rapidly down the drain.

              The severe US drought continues, more or less unabated despite it being winter there. So grain harvests have been well down ion many states and farmers are thinking seriously whether it is worth even bothering to plant seeds in the worst affected states.

    • Coronial Typer 10.2

      In fact you can do a whole taxonomy of catastrophists, like a history of the apocalypse.
      – those who thought Jesus was coming again in ad1000
      – those who thought there would be nuclear annihilation
      – those who thought World War 2would destroy us
      – those who thought Communism would rule us
      – those who believe in the Rapture
      – those who thought Maori would die out
      – those who thought the energy crisis would start in 1979 and continue
      – those who thought New Zealand was the best place to be at the end of the world
      – those who thought the Black Death signalled the Great Judgement
      – those who think we are in a permanent moral decline

      On any one of these, there have been responses with quietist/retreat variants, charismatic variants, state-run variants. Sorry if you feel relativised, but human history affords me confidence that we really do adapt.
      None of those crises signalled much of the end of anything. Many forced technological changes, belief-system changes. Through each, we have shown remarkable ability to panic, and yet improve.

      • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 10.2.1

        Coronial Typer – got it right. We need to be passionate about the future not apathetic which I feel that I and many have often been. When should we start panicing though? Can you give me a lead. I have hears recent commentators on radio talk about the world having 15 years to change course to a safer path.

        • Coronial Typer 10.2.1.1

          Well to confess, I oscillate between pessimism and self interest. More in retreat mode in Wanaka, which is a bourgeoise fantasy of the purest order. I like the Transition Towns people, the ecoenthusiasts in every town like Wanaka Wastebusters, and strong Mayors – I don’t see strong or willing states emerging in the next 20 years who have the capacity to implement strong policy, especially after the post-GFC hangovers. I see only localised responses, greater oil multinational dominance, and (if Labour/Greens don’t win) a fully privatised energy market here. My advice: shift everything you have into Montaine land, and garden furiously.

          • Colonial Viper 10.2.1.1.1

            Greer on the Archdruid report regularly makes note of previous doomsday prophecies – there are lots of them – which have come to naught.

            I generally agree that NZ has 15-20 years of relative freedom to get ready the infrastructure, economy and a society prepared for the long term future. After that point it will get much harder, much faster.

            Imagine trying to run NZ on half the petrol and diesel it needs to run on today; that tends to concentrate minds.

      • Afewknowthetruth 10.2.2

        The energy crisis did start in 1979. That was the year of maximum per capita global energy availability. And it has continued ever since. It’s just that most people didn’t notice because the effects were minor until around 2007.

        Now the energy and environmental crises which have been ignored for decades take the front seat everywhere except in the minds of the saboteurs who constitute NZ parliament and other similar saboteurs in other parliaments or houses of representatives.

    • johnm 10.3

      Hi Afewknowthetruth
      I’m category 2. Because at almost age 65, I expect to be safely dead when the shtf with climate change and severe fuel shortages. But that doesn’t absolve this or any government from facing reality to protect the people as opposed to their well orf sychophants, that is. Unfortunately the latter applies. :-(

  11. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 11

    We have these social strata, and the split in attitudes into the personal preference of each, without bringing much overview, intelligence or analysis to the world’s problems being exacerbated by exponential population growth. We need to be cutting birth rates and so limiting this growth.

    This morning on radio interview with young woman of great intelligence, she was saying that at one time she was following up her anthropology degree by distributing condoms but wanted something to do that was more constructive. It is such an important thing, but prevention is less satisfying than some positive action.

    We have to break through these dismissive attitudes which have resulted in a loss of effort started some decades ago. Even if we can get the discussion and action on family size minimisation going and the helpful use of condoms for that and to prevent disease, then we will have religious fundamentalists and the quirky against it. There is always the outspoken university woman who has had ten children and is against any sort of birth control. Or yhe type like that French rich tarte who rides down pedestrians on footpaths on her motor bike and hates the idea of gay marriage or child raising because she herself didn’t have a stable family life.

    The rich can afford to indulge themselves as to children, and then send them to boarding school to imbibe their education as to values, morals, and the thinking and knowledge that will enable them to maintain their privileged position as adults. The poor are often dominated by male supremacy and/or religion and lack of commitment to family planning or even a willingness to desert the family almost completely.

    • Coronial Typer 11.1

      We have precisely the opposite problem in New Zealand. The birth rate is plummeting, Local Authority areas outside of Auckland and Hamilton are in population stagnation or decline, and even Auckland remains propped up by 15 short years of high immigration. The point of the post was to respond and add a bit more nuance to income inequality, not cure the world.

      • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 11.1.1

        CT
        Yes, but how can we separate ourselves from the world problems. The stresses are influencing us all, each country in its own way perhaps.

        • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.1

          Yes each country will have its own very specific issues to handle. The USA with tens of millions of handguns and assault weapons out in the wild is not going to be a fun place.

          Yes, but how can we separate ourselves from the world problems

          We reduce our reliance on imported energy, put some distance between ourselves and foreign sources of capital and the international financial system, move to a policy of import substitution, develop/find/keep the best people on our shores, and maintain a strong and capable defence force and maritime patrol capability.

  12. Afewknowthetruth 12

    The pre-industrial population of the world was around 700 million. Industrial agriculture, initially based on coal, but vastly expanded by the use of oil, allowed the human population to get into overshoot by a factor of around ten, i.e. there are at least ten times too many people living on this planet. When you consider that for most of the 200,000 years of the human experience there were fewer than 10 million humans living as hunter-gatherers we see that the overshoot is actually around 700 times a sustainable population. Humanity has achieved this overshoot by degrading the planet’s life support systems at an ever faster rate to the point of planetary meltdown.

    Contrary to what many uniformed people think, the decline in oil availability will be quite sudden for most ‘developed’ nations because the export-land model indicates that rising domestic consumption in oil-exporting nations coupled with depletion results in a rapid fall off of internationally tradable oil. And all the good, easy oil has been used: most of what what is left to be extracted is difficult, low quality oil.

    The other aspect few people consider is that most western nations are buying oil with worthless paper generated via the bond market. Many nations are working on systems to bypass the US dollar, which will result in catastrophic failure for nations still caught up in fiat money-printing madness. Japan is likely to be the first big domino to fall, almost certainly later this year, with most of Europe not far behind.

    The comments I’ve read indicate that most people are still uninformed/misinformed.,

    I’m still sticking with 2015 as the year that most things people currently take for granted being difficult to obtain or unavailable, and around 2020 for complete collapse of present economic arrangements..

  13. Macro 13

    One category Ad seems to have missed is the:

    “I’m do’n all rite! small business self employed contractor/trades person”

    Has a small business garage paint shop etc and works 15+ hours a day charges $65 + an hour and effectively money gouges his customers because they are forced to use his services for whatever reason – mainly regulatory. Can’t see why every one else in society isn’t like him, and generally has a poor opinion of anyone not like him – his loving spouse is of a similar opinion. Listens incessantly to talk back radio and therefore considers himself to be well informed.

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      I wouldn’t bitch at this group of auto/mechanic shop owners. They know that they’ve just been royally screwed by the National Govt. And they are being royally screwed by the banks, the power companies, the insurers, etc.

  14. Anne 14

    Listens incessantly to talk back radio and therefore considers himself to be well informed and thinks John Key is the best thing since sliced bread.

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    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
  • RECOUNT JUST ONE STEP TO RESTORING CREDIBILITY
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA SEEKS TAI TOKERAU RECOUNT
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA to fight mass privatisation of state housing
    Announcements over the past 12 hours from the Minister responsible for Housing New Zealand, Bill English, and Minister for Social Housing, Paula Bennett, make clear the government’s intention for the mass privatisation of state housing. This comes during the middle...
    Mana | 07-10
  • Journalists have right to protect sources
    Legal authorities must respect the right of journalist Nicky Hager to protect the source of his material for his Dirty Politics book under Section 68 of the Evidence Act, Acting Labour Leader David Parker says. “It is crucial in an...
    Labour | 06-10
  • It shouldn’t take the Army to house the homeless
    National’s move to speed up its state house sell-off shows it is bankrupt of new ideas, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “National has been in office for six years, yet the housing crisis has got worse every month and...
    Labour | 06-10
  • Government must lift social housing supply, not shuffle the deck chairs
    National's decision to shift the state provision of housing to third parties is a smokescreen for the Government decreasing the provision of affordable housing, the Green Party said today."What National should be doing is increasing the supply of both social...
    Greens | 06-10
  • Election 2014 – the final count
    While we have to wait for the final booth level counts we can now see how well we did in the specials and look at electorate level data. First off special votes (and disallowed/recounted votes etc). There was a change...
    Greens | 06-10
  • We need more houses, not Ministers
    The Government’s decision to have three housing Ministers will create a dog’s breakfast of the portfolio and doesn’t bode well for fixing the country’s housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New Zealanders need more houses, not more Ministers....
    Labour | 05-10
  • MANA’S CHALLENGE TO THE 51st PARLIAMENT
    Ten years ago I led 50,000 Maori on the historic FORESHORE AND SEABED MARCH from Te Rerenga Wairua to the very steps of this parliament, in a march against the greatest land grab in the history of this country –...
    Mana | 03-10
  • Is this really necessary?
    No one denies chief executives should be well paid for their skills and experience, but it is the efforts of all employees which contribute to company profits, Labour’s Acting Leader David Parker says. “Salaries paid to chief executives come at...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Lyttelton Port workers also deserve pay rises
    Hard slog by Lyttelton Port workers contributed to strong financial growth for the company and they deserve to be rewarded for their work as much as its chief executive, says Labour’s Acting Leader David Parker. “Lyttelton Port chief executive Peter...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Māori Party must seek guarantees on Māori seats
    Labour is calling on the Māori Party to ensure protection of the Māori seats is part of its coalition deal with National which is being considering this weekend, Labour’s Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. “For the third consecutive term,...
    Labour | 02-10
  • Donaghys job losses another blow to Dunedin
    The loss of 30 jobs from Donaghys rope and twine factory is yet another blow to the people and economy of Dunedin, says Dunedin South Labour MP Clare Curran. “Donaghys was founded in 1876; the company has survived two world...
    Labour | 02-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Discordant Chimes of Freedom: Why Labour has yet to be forgiven.
    WHY DOES THE ELECTORATE routinely punish Labour and the Greens for their alleged “political correctness” but not National? It just doesn’t seem fair. Consider, for example, the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 – the so-called “anti-smacking legislation” –...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Hosking or Henry – Which right wing crypto fascist clown do you want to w...
    So Mediaworks are finally going to make some actual money from their eye watering contract with Paul Henry by launching a new multi-platform Breakfast show over TV, Radio and internet. This is great news for Campbell Live who have dodged...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Families need more money to reduce child poverty
    Prime Minister John Key is mistaken to rule out extending the In Work Tax Credit to all poor children (The Nation 11th Oct) and Child Poverty Action Group challenges government advisors to come up with a more cost effective way...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Don’t shit on my dream
    Once were dreamers. A large man, walks down the road and, even from 200 yards there’s light showing between his big arms and bigger body. It’s as if he’s put tennis balls under his arms. Two parking wardens walk out...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Labour and ‘special interests’
    The media narrative of Labour is that it is unpopular because it’s controlled by ‘special interests’. This ‘special interests’ garbage is code for gays, Maoris, wimin and unionists. We should show that argument the contempt it deserves. The next Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Ru...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Tahi) . National’s housing development project: ‘Gateway’ to confusion . Perhaps nothing better illustrates National’s lack of a coherent housing programme than the ‘circus’ that is...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Here’s what WINZ are patronisingly saying to people on welfare when they ...
    Yesterday, a case manager from WINZ called to tell me that I needed to “imagine what I would do if I did not have welfare”. I replied “Well, I guess if I couldn’t live at home, I would be homeless.”...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • David Shearer’s ‘no feminist chicks’ mentality highlights all that is...
    Mr Nasty pays a visit Shearer’s extraordinary outburst last night on NZs favourite redneck TV, The Paul Henry Show, is a reminder of all that is wrong within the Labour Caucus right now… He said the current calls for a female or...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0
    Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – A Tale Of Two Cities
    Sunday was surreal. I went for a drive and ended up in a different country. It wasn’t intentional but those days of too many literally intertextual references seldom are. There is no doubt that the Sunday drive this week had...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • FMA warns consumers about cold-calling investment offers
    The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is warning New Zealand consumers and investors to be wary of cold-calls asking them to buy shares or put their money into offshore firms....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Comprehensive plan needed to end child poverty
    Child Poverty Action Group says it is vital the newly re-elected National government takes a planned and comprehensive approach to reducing child poverty in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Metiria Gets Feed the Kids
    Yesterday the Speaker of the House advised that he had accepted my request to transfer my Feed the Kids (Education (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Amendment) Bill to Metiria Turei of the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • DIA undercover investigation leads to jailing
    An undercover Internal Affairs investigation has led to a Hastings man being jailed for three and half years....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • RainbowYOUTH: 25 Years, 25 More
    In 1989, a group of young people in Auckland got together to form a support group for LGBTIQ youth. They called it Auckland Lesbian And Gay Youth (ALGY). After 25 years, several location changes, a name change, a brand reboot...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Outdated Oath shows need for Kiwi Head of State
    MPs are sworn in today and New Zealand Republic has written to MPs asking them to talk about why 121 New Zealanders elected by the people of New Zealand and standing in the New Zealand Parliament swear allegiance to another...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Council shouldn’t revenue grab from windfall valuations
    Auckland Council should state clearly they will not try and capture revenue as a result of the latest valuations and needs reminding that the City’s skyrocketing property values doesn’t change the level or cost of Council’s services, says...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • EPMU endorses Andrew Little for Labour leadership
    The National Executive of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union unanimously endorsed Andrew Little for the role of Labour leader, at a meeting held yesterday. “I have been speaking to our workplace delegates at forums across the country over...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • World Food Day promotes Agroecology not GE technology
    The UN has stated that agroecology is a major solution to feeding the world and caring for the earth....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Labour Names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Contenders for Labour leadership debate for first time
    The contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party debated for the first time on TV One’s Q+A programme today....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • UN Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme
    New Zealand's United Nations Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully
    Murray McCully says New Zealanders can expect a 5-10 year engagement against Islamic State if we join military action in Iraq and the government will take that “very carefully into account”...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Julia Gillard
    Julia Gillard says there is “sufficient evidence” to fight Islamic State and does not think it will increase the risk of a domestic attack...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • NZ businesses to make child abuse a priority conversation
    Many leading New Zealand businesses have partnered with national child advocacy organisation Child Matters to participate in the fourth annual ‘Buddy Day’ - New Zealand’s only child abuse prevention awareness day....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Tribunal decision significant for SMEs
    The Human Rights Review Tribunal decided this week in favour of an employee’s right not to work on Saturdays for religious reasons. The decision may still be appealed but the Director of the Office of Human Rights Proceedings, Robert Kee,...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • On The Nation this weekend
    This weekend on The Nation… New Zealand has been elected to the United Nations Security Council, but what happens next? Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully from New York about our goals for reform, what America wants from us...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • 1000+ supported by Te Arawa Whanau Ora
    Over 1000 individual whānau members are leading happier, healthier, more successful lives as a result of eight passionate and committed Māori organisations working at the coalface to help whānau find success....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Nomination for Board Members Now Open
    CRF’s objective is to create opportunities for people from refugee backgrounds to lead fulfilling lives and contribute to every area of New Zealand society. It is an organisation that undertakes advocacy work using the strengths-based approach,...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Anglican Family Care Otago staff to take industrial action
    Social workers, family workers and support staff working for Anglican Family Care in Dunedin and South Otago will take industrial action after their employer refused a pay increase that would keep up with the rising cost of living....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Use UN Security Council role to overcome inaction and injust
    Amnesty International welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the UN Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use the role to ensure the body lives up to its role of safeguarding global peace and security....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Grisham’s ‘child porn’ comments ignorant
    World-renowned author John Grisham has come under fire by advocacy group Stop Demand Foundation, for comments it says trivialises the global child sex abuse trade....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Latest leak of TPPA intellectual property text confirms risk
    On the eve of the latest (non)round of negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) yet another version of the intellectual property has found its way to Wikileaks ....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
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