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This is rape culture: Steubenville verdict

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 pm, March 19th, 2013 - 60 comments
Categories: feminism, sexism, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: ,

[Trigger warning: rape, rape culture, victim-blaming]

I was honestly surprised to learn that two of the boys heroes football players men charged in the Steubenville rape case had been convicted (albeit sentenced to paltry terms with the possibility of serving longer).

I was honestly completely unsurprised to read posts about the response to this.  Including CNN acting like the real problem was that two promising football careers had been destroyed, people tweeting that the men involved “did what most people in their situation would have done“, that one of the rapists felt the need to apologise for taking pictures and distributing them because “that never should have happened” … but not for actually assaulting her in the first place.  Doesn’t that sound a little “sorry I got caught” to you?

I was pleasantly surprised to see Serious Mainstream Media Sources acknowledge that this is rape culture, and that it’s linked to jock/bloke culture, and that it’s not an inherent, natural phenomenon.  (It’s not perfect but it’s a start.)

So there’s some hope there.

Rape culture taught these young men that because they were on the football team, they were faultless – and their coach would “fix” anything that happened.  Rape culture taught these young men that an unconscious woman’s body was theirs to penetrate.  Rape culture taught these young men that they had the right to bargain and plead with their victim because their football careers were more important than acknowledging they violated her.  Rape culture means they were tried as juveniles.  Rape culture means that even with public video evidence of what happened, their lawyers let them plead not guilty.

Rape culture means that even when it is unequivocally rape – because even a court of law has said so – people will defend these men on Twitter because “they did what most people in their situation would have done.”

Want more? Manboobz is covering the victim-blaming on Twitter.  Black Girl Dangerous has a thought-provoking post on why you can feel sorry for Mays and Richmond … but for different reasons.  Two more Steubenville teens (young women) have now been arrested for menacing the victim.  Mmmm, delicious culture.

Rape Culture 101.  I suggest you read it before commenting.

60 comments on “This is rape culture: Steubenville verdict”

  1. ghostrider888 1

    the “circle jerk”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CyWw8ry-yiQ
    pissing Queenie (that’s anthropology for ya)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthropology
    sorry, but Much more RAPE TO COME. (at least it is “documented”)

    “I am the spirit of vengeance. Nothing will stop me from inflicting pain on all those who have inflicted on innocent beings.”
    -Ghost Rider
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Zl7S1LaPMU
    (caution: contains scenes of Outlaws caring)

    • QoT 1.1

      Make a clear point or fuck off, ghostrider, future comments like this are getting binned.

      • ghostrider888 1.1.1

        touchy.not minimizing. just reality.

        • QoT 1.1.1.1

          If there’s “reality” in that vomit-puddle of a comment you are entirely welcome to explain it.

          • ghostrider888 1.1.1.1.1

            we may rail against “rape culture” until “the cows come home”, however, cross-culturally, imo, it is well-entrenched and here to stay.
            -American male chauvinism
            -British male chauvanism
            -sub-continent attitudes to women
            -the rise of Islam and Sharia
            -sexualization of the (young) female body in the MSM
            -proliferation of sedating psycho-actives
            -”fashion”

            in fact, Patriarchy if you will. (shall I go on) surely you have read “Backlash”
            while obviously One laments…there are greater issues at stake, surely (Ban me if you wish, got better things to do than tussle with an idealogue; you think you humour me…well…)
            :)

            • karol 1.1.1.1.1.1

              So it’s widespread and well-entrenched, causing extensive injury, fatalities, and psychological damage, but there are greater issues at stake?

              • AsleepWhileWalking

                Other issues may well be important at different times.

                However, rape culture is so pervasive that we have learnt to live with it (possibly because the affects aren’t immediately apparent). Hell, we can’t even conceive what our reality could be like without rape culture – you know…victims with RIGHTS and shit like that! Crazy stuff!!

                In addition to this the attitude of others (ie the wider cultural attitude around rape) has a significant impact on how the victim recovers and the speed of that recovery. Seeing crap like the CNN report on the Steubenville verdict will distress the victim and trigger others who have gone through similar experiences.

                It is offensive to read and hear this crap, but for me it isn’t the most persuasive reason to end rape culture.

                I spoke to someone who works in Rape Crisis a couple of months ago and she quoted some NZ study that showed sexual violence costs this country millions a year AND if treatment isn’t received then it can cost even more over the lifetime of the victim. The costs include lost productivity, prosecution and investigation costs, mental health costs, family dysfunction leading to more costs….. Anyone know what study this is?

                To conclude, rape culture costs our economy and can render an otherwise functional human being economical useless for years and in the worst cases permanently. It goes well beyond hurt feelings and psychological harm. Our country deserves to be free of suffering that rape culture creates both financially and socially which makes this the most important issue of our time

            • QoT 1.1.1.1.1.2

              Greater issues at stake than violent sex crime affecting around 1 in 4 women, being supported by a socially-constructed set of behaviours? Gosh, you must move in extremely high-minded circles.

              • ghostrider888

                it may well be 1 in 3 in times to come;
                is / ought fallacy and all that

                • Pascal's bookie

                  What a load of shit. By the same reasoning nothing could have been, or could be done about slavery, torture, actual (non-symbolic) monarchy, feudalism, labour rights, poverty, or any other damn thing you care to name.

                  Why the fuck would you throw your hands in the air about this? Thinking about, and talking about how society talks about rape, and how it responds to rape can change the incidence of rape. That can only be not rue if you think that rapists are not a part of our society.

                  Will it eliminate rape? Probably not. But there is every reason to believe that it will make a difference at the margin. And do you know what that means? Fewer people getting raped. And that’s a good thing worth doing right? So why get in the way of it?

                  • QoT

                    I read in ghostrider’s comments a kind of snobby, sneering attitude: “god, your silly corporeal lives are so passe, I’m focusing on the real issues just like Ayn Rand”.

                    Kinda like the Vulcans in Star Trek: Enterprise, abomination that it was.

                    It probably helps that ghostrider is likely from a demographic which doesn’t get explicitly targeted by patriarchy.

                  • Colonial Weka

                    “What a load of shit”

                    I agree. Stating that nothing can be done about rape culture, so why bother, or that there are more important things to focus on, is part of rape culture.

                  • Rogue Trooper

                    what exactly, on a global basis has been done about “slavery, torture, feudalism labour rights and poverty”?

                    • McFlock

                      Well, comparing it now with 200 years ago seems to suggest quite an improvement, albeit with a long way to go. Courts of Human Rights, slavery made illegal in most nations, advent (and yes, subsequent erosion but still not complete elimination) of the welfare state, and growth of unions, I’d say quite a bit’s been done to address those issues.

                      And there’s even been some improvement on reducing the number of rapists in our community, again albeit with a massive way to go. Making it illegal for husbands to rape their wives, for example. Not sufficient, but progress all the same.

              • Populuxe1

                It’s a pity we don’t have statistics for how many men in New Zealand are affected by violent sex crime, but for some reason no one seems to be collecting that. You’d almost think it was being disregarded as a distraction or something.

                • One Tāne Huna

                  No, I wouldn’t.

                  Are you sure the statistics are unavailable?

                  I checked at statistics NZ. Look in their crime stats under sexual assault.

                  The statistics are available.

                  • Populuxe1

                    Perhaps I’m not looking in the right place, but I can’t see a discrete category for male-male or female-male rape

                    • One Tāne Huna

                      You said: “we don’t have statistics for how many men in New Zealand are affected by violent sex crime, ”

                      You’re wrong: we do.

                      In the period 1994 – 2012, out of the 2427 sexual assaults recorded, 24 of them involved adult male victims. Twenty-four! No wonder you’re so concerned :roll:

            • AsleepWhileWalking 1.1.1.1.1.3

              @ghostrider Just because YOU refuse to change your attitude, doesn’t mean you speak for the rest of society or future generations.

              Point of fact, gay marriage was once a pipe dream, but now hardly anyone under 30 opposes it.

              Everything we do and say impacts the collective conciousness and we will change this, the only options are either 1) now or 2) later.

              • Polish Pride

                Just because YOU refuse to change your attitude, doesn’t mean you speak for the rest of society or future generations.

                I did not see Ghost rider as having an attitude about it. More stating his observation regarding the state of the world and perhaps trends in this area.

                “Everything we do and say impacts the collective conciousness”…. great to see others that understand this.
                I am guessing that you might also understand that cases like Stubenville and India (and unfortunately probably others to come) are being brought forward on a grander scale into the collective consciousness so that we can feel and voice outrage and as result (as you have said) things can be changed.

                • karol

                  gr was hiding behind obscurity, pontificating from intellectual heights, and displaying a superior, dismissive attitude – conveying the message that it’s not worth doing anything about rape culture, and, anyway, there’s more important issues to deal with.

                  • ghostrider888

                    lots of assumptions there.
                    a post on the prevalence of female genital mutilation and forced under-aged marriage within current NZ society might be timely.
                    gr does NOT approve of rape, just sees it as increasingly inevitable, like “slavery, torture, feudalism, the erosion of labour rights, poverty,” hunger and human trafficking. What the rider sees is a decidely euro-centric focus upon issues in the leading sites within the NZ blogosphere; mirrors the National parochialism at times.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      War and peace.

                      Well over a million European women raped during WWII.

                      It offends our sensibilities to think what humanity and inhumanity we are still very clearly capable of.

                      The other thing: time to get alcohol abuse sorted out.

                  • ghostrider888

                    furthermore, both of the riders mothers were raped; his biological mother degraded scatalogically in front of her children, his biological brothers raped by their father. Sorry Lynn, sometimes people just gotta get out of their own way and get over themselves; Ever watched documentaries on child sex-slave workers in India?

                    • karol

                      Now you are communicating clearly, gr, even though using 3rd person distancing, and stating where you stand. Hiding behind obscurity opens the way to varying/mis-interpretation.

                      I’m sorry to read about your awful family history.

                      Yes, I’ve watched docos and read about sex slavery and it’s workers elsewhere. But even dealing with such non-European issues can be done from a Euro-centric perspective.

                      I have known black women (when I was in the UK) who were unhappy with the way white women focused on female genital mutilation and arranged marriages in other cultures, while not dealing so intensively with the misogynist and racist practices in their own cultures.

                      It’s not necessary to be opposed to one or the other: i.e. to things there or here. All need to be visible, discussed, and where necessary, opposed.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      gr, is your story about your family real or just the backstory of the fictional character who’s name you use?

                    • ghostrider888

                      as some of you may know
                      SH=JC=fnjckg=Jokerman=RT=gr
                      everything autobigraphical / anecdotal comment made by these pseuds has been factual; since his revelation the rider endeavours very hard not to deceive, and furthermore receives periodic affirmations of his abilities.
                      let me repeat that : EVERYTHING THE RIDER SHARES OF HIS EXPERIENCE IS BASED IN FACT.
                      (sorry to take up space in the thread Queen, yet there you have it; I descend from a couple or three of your typical run-of-the-mill dysfunctional “modern” NZ families.
                      next?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Thanks for clarifying, gr. Speaking in the 3rd person makes it sound as if you are referring to someone else, which can have the effect of blurring the truths you are sharing.

                      That’s a truly awful upbringing, I’m glad you feel able to share it with us, however you choose to write or whatever name you use. All the best.

    • Huginn 1.2

      While we’re talking about ‘rape culture’ – I’ve noticed that responses to QoT’s posts and comments are often very personal.
      It’s like where Mike Smith, R0b, lprent and even Trevor Mallard have got impassioned opponents, QoT’s got stalkers.
      It’s creepy and it belongs in the same bucket of online violence that R0b, rightly, refuses to tolerate.

      • lprent 1.2.1

        I have noticed it myself, and Karol has the same issue at a lower level. I think I will have to find something specially humiliating to do to the males with issues with women in my usual subtle sysop role…. What is a good image for a very pathetic dick?

        • Polish Pride 1.2.1.1

          perhaps just directly call them out on it when it occurs. This way others will see it also and the person will very quickly see that their attitude towards woman is deemed unacceptable.

  2. SouthDeezViper 2

    Yeah, I’d be keen to know what you’re getting at also.

  3. karol 3

    It seems like the most high profile gang rape cases involve professional male sports people. Maybe that’s part of celebrity culture as well as rape culture. And part of the way the MSM likes to incorporate both in a sensationalised story.

    The two cultures intertwine when physical masculine aggression is glamorised, and sportsmen are treated as as role models in all spheres of life, merely for their ability to play a competitive game well.

    CNN… so much for it’s claims to being a world leader in news delivery – like it’s extensive professional team would not be anything objective.

    • Rogue Trooper 3.1

      yes; I have many personal anecdotes from my time as a confidante of sex-workers of the “games” nationally recognized sportsmen play in the rented hotel rooms

  4. joe90 4

    http://www.thenation.com/article/172643/ten-things-end-rape-culture

    Tell your story.

    Several years ago my younger sister told me how more than thirty years previously she was rendered incapable with alcohol and raped by her sports coach, a man 25 years her senior. My sister was 14 years old and the crime was dismissed as a false complaint by a naive infatuated teen who after being rejected by him concocted a fanciful story about a family man of impeccable character and an upstanding member of the small isolated expat community.

    I’m shaking now so I’ll submit before I back out.

    • karol 4.1

      Thank-you, joe. One of those many stories most people don’t know about. A very cruel experience for a 14 year old, and one that must always be with her.

    • rosy 4.2

      I know a couple of stories like that, Joe90, but from people who never confronted the abuser. And I’d be shaking if I wrote them down too.

      It’s a big thing to write about something so appalling, so damaging and so… supressed… within the small group that has had to suffer because of it. Rape culture exists because we don’t believe it does Excellent link.

    • QoT 4.3

      Thanks for sharing your story, joe. It is a really important part of fighting rape culture.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 4.4

      Hiya Joe,

      Thanks for posting your experience as part of combating rape culture and most of all listening to your sister. You did good, bless ya!

      I’d love to post what happened to me but can’t mainly because OP’s here may use it as a personal attack at any time in the future. What I will say from my experience is that rape culture also exists inside our treatment system, with the very people who are funded by the government to help rape victims recover.

  5. rosy 5

    I’m liking Black Girl Dangerous’ take on this. Especially her last paragraph.., it’s an absolute tragedy that we have a culture that doesn’t just believe it’s ok to rape drunk girls rather than look out for them, but asserts the right to do so (or vulnerable boys – check out the Taradale violation a few years back – although a bit more sympathy for the victem there). Then, instead of addressing the problem young men get chucked in prison, and probably have those beliefs reinforced, while not a lot is done to change the culture that doesn’t just support, but also encourages, their actions.

    And the girl? re-labelled from the ‘victim’ to the ‘accuser’ as the story goes on in the last of those links about the text messages. What’s up with that? The rape was done (guilty verdicts) and the txt messaging campaign was done, there’s no dispute about it.

    • QoT 5.1

      It’s one of the quirks of rape culture: before the court decides anything (if the case even goes to court) just keep asserting that you can’t call it “rape” unless the accused is found guilty of rape; after the court decides something, just keep asserting that it still isn’t rape and never explain why.

      • AsleepWhileWalking 5.1.1

        Meanwhile it is somehow acceptable to imply the victim, sorry alleged victim(!) of a rape is to blame in some way (drunk, hemline too high, or just being there at the time..).

        Our media are a contributor to the culture. Pity we can’t do more to hold them accountable for the way they write about sexual violence.

        • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1

          Meanwhile it is somehow acceptable to imply the victim, sorry alleged victim(!) of a rape is to blame in some way (drunk, hemline too high, or just being there at the time..).

          Alcohol abuse is a common factor in a lot of violent crime. There’s no getting around it.

  6. Descendant Of Sssmith 6

    These older men predating and taking advantage of young women just piss me off as well.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/03/01/the-miss-delaware-teen-usa-scandal/

    It’s an oddity that both my young adult sons have had serious attempts by older men to take advantage of them – one via drink spiking – but my daughter at this point has not.

    I would hope that they all remain free from such approaches in the future as should all people young and not so young.

    There’s some pretty horrible damage done by these people.

  7. beatie 7

    I’ve been raped, and more than once. The worst was at knifepoint aged 17. It’s utterly humiliating and as a young woman in the early ’70′s my response was ‘you bastards aren’t going to “get” me’. So I carried on as normal and pretended nothing had happened. Talking about it just invited embarrassment and denial. Reporting it was unthinkable, it would only add to the ridicule and trauma.

    • Descendant Of Sssmith 7.1

      It should never have happened once let alone more than once.

      My heart goes out to you. I have a friend who was raped a knifepoint by multiple gang members and she and her husband have suffered terribly over the years.

      Sadly there’s plenty of examples where women self-harm, suicide, turn to drug abuse, blame themselves, and so on.

      All that needs to happen to prevent this damage is for men to take responsibility for their own actions.

      There’s no imperative that requires any male to have sex at any given point in time and clearly if the man is so drunk he doesn’t ‘know what he’s doing” it can’t even remotely be called sex. There’s no enjoyment present – it’s doing it cause I can and it’s about power and control.

      It’s rape in those situations pure and simple.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.1.1

        All that needs to happen to prevent this damage is for men to take responsibility for their own actions.

        And for the community to hold the rapists accountable, stop making excuses for them and stop blaming the victims.

        • Ennui 7.1.1.1

          DTB see mine below: I am more interested in how rapists hold themselves accountable for their actions than how the community holds them accountable. I want violent offenders to know circumspect, to have the ability to show empathy and project the consequence of their actions upon their own psyche. I am struggling to explain BUT I think rapists would not commit the act if they had sufficient self awareness and empathy. I suspect bugger all of them are psychopaths (I will leave that to the psychologists to work out) but as this column points out they are “culturally damaged”. As are we all.

        • Colonial Weka 7.1.1.2

          And for everyone to take actions to change rape culture (including looking at their own attitudes and behaviours).

    • AsleepWhileWalking 7.2

      I’m sorry that happened to you. Thanks for revealing part of your story and doing your part in combating rape culture.

      I know what you mean by inviting embarrassment and denial, the culture has changed slightly but still difficult. No statute of limitations on rape…

  8. Ennui 9

    Joe90 / Beattie, thanks for the courage to share the harrowing memories. Reading the whole column including watching the trailer to the Lawless movie just confirms that we have a culture of endemic violence. We violate people with state sanctioned violence, we violate people with the economic unfairness, we push the violence to all sectors of society. And we glorify it in the media, and the movies. We wonder it gets pushed down, bashing the partner, assaulting strangers, hitting children, raping. No one is spared. Like most males I have been beaten with cops batons, taken a few hidings in “fights”, lashed out and inflicted pain.

    I too wont set rape aside in isolation, but that in no way diminishes the harm: it is another violent scar on us all, and truly desolating for the victims. What concerns me is how we can break the cycle. I am not convinced that judicial punishment of the offenders of violent crimes works in the slightest, prison merely brutalises and reinforces that might is right. In the case of the Steubenville rapists we are now left with individuals who have not been made to recognise or accept the personal damage they have done to another person, and a society that has failed in it duty to protect all from harm. Just appalling. With nobody s facing up to it, we are all guilty.

  9. AsleepWhileWalking 10

    Locals who perpetuate rape culture off the top of my head include John Tamaheri, Sir Robert Jones, and Lindsay Mitchell. Google any one of these folks + rape and rape culture will come up and smack you in the face.

    Perhaps the way to tackle rape culture is to approach the leaders of the group (it’s a group mentality at work) and gently influence them to change their opinion.

  10. Treetop 11

    About two months ago I gave the cutting of funding to Rape Crisis a bit of thought because of how vital it is for a person who has been sexually assaulted to be able to disclose or discuss with someone who understands how sexual assault impacts in many areas, (trust, relationships, the health system, employment, the justice system, being disconnected from society or your family, and the attitude mainly from those who think it is something that you can switch off, when it is something which you learn to manage on many levels the best way you can and this can be lonely.

    I made an inquiry to Rape Crisis about:
    1. Do they have a ribbon?
    Yes they do it is coloured red and stands for the wounded heart.

    2. Have they ever held a ribbon day?
    No they have not, but they have supported a white ribbon day.

    3. Would I like to see a red ribbon day?
    Yes I would.

    I would wear two ribbons, one for the wounded embryo and one for the wounded child. A person could pin the ribbon on the inside of clothing, as I would not want anyone to feel threatened due to how ignorant people are over the distress which sexual assault can cause.

  11. tracey 12

    Reported rape versus conviction ratios should make all hang our heads in shame.

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    A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A forgotten naval victory in which even Nature played a part...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Labour’s manufacturing plan
    David Cunliffe has launched Labour's policy to get more manufacturing jobs back in New Zealand: Labour leader David Cunliffe launched the policy to an Auckland business audience this morning, adding the depreciation and procurement policies to the known suite of...
    Polity | 17-04
  • Easter PT shutdown
    It’s Easter weekend and that invariably means the rail network is shut down for works. Auckland Transport advises the rail network will be closed for Easter and there are changes to timetables for buses and ferries during the holiday break....
    Transport Blog | 17-04
  • Another perspective on the postgraduate allowance cuts
    I have already shared two stories from psychology students about how the postgraduate allowance cuts have affected them. These stories demonstrate the widespread impact the changes are having. Here is yet another story I have received, this one giving the...
    frogblog | 17-04
  • Against secret "justice" in NZ
    Last year, in response to a series of court cases challenging its control orders or claiming compensation for human rights abuses by its intelligence services, the UK passed the Justice and Security Act 2013. The Act introduces a "Closed Material...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Massey chancellor sets up company in opposition to university
    Massey Chancellor Chris Kelly will chair the board of a company that intends to be New Zealand’s largest private training provider (PTE)...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Gibbs, Hayek, Canterbury and the free market for degrees
    The New Zealand Herald notes that philanthropist Alan Gibbs is about to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Canterbury today. One of the many institutions Alan Gibbs has donated his money to...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Record Store Day
    As readers will know, I have long embraced the internet music revolution. The ability to discover and download new things pretty much as they're being made has reinvented and refreshed my lifelong relationship with popular music. But I still really...
    Public Address | 16-04
  • Great Sorkin Parody
    Aaron Sorkin (SportsNight, The West Wing, The Newsroom) makes a very particular style of TV. Some good parts to that, some really silly parts. Amy Schumer' Comedy Central parody of Sorkin is pitch-prefect and hilarious. Enjoy: Inside Amy SchumerGet More:...
    Polity | 16-04
  • Photographic proof
    Deborah asked for a picture of my bicycle, after I wrote about it, and there is now one in existence which even includes me riding it along Mt Albert Rd, thanks to a dear friend who drove past me and...
    The Hand Mirror | 16-04
  • Our future lies in science
    This is not a column on global warming, climate change or whether humans are or aren’t having an impact....
    Pundit | 16-04
  • Gordon Campbell on drone strikes and Judith Collins‘ last stand
    Reportedly, US drone operators refer to their kills as “bug splat” – mainly because when the carnage is viewed on their screens thousands of kilometres away at home, it looks like an insect strike on a windscreen. The name has...
    Gordon Campbell | 16-04
  • Revealed: Steven Joyce’s select committee submission
    Dear Education Select Committee, Well, there are less than two weeks for people to get their submissions in to you on my proposals to remove staff and students from university and wānanga councils. You...
    TEU | 16-04
  • World News Brief, Thursday April 17
    Top of the AgendaTensions Rise in Ukraine’s East Ahead of Talks...
    Pundit | 16-04
  • Northern Europe looks to end fixed-term agreements for academics
    Long strings of fixed term employment agreements are not just a problem here in New Zealand but Sweden too, according to Education International. But the Swedish Association of University Teachers (SULF) has a plan to solve this. It is turning...
    TEU | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Date of Release: Thursday, April 17, 2014Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today.The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company, Christchurch Yarns, go into...
    First Union Media | 16-04
  • Collins: More contemptible lying
    Yesterday, Judith Collins treated New Zealand's media and people as if we were all complete fools. Here is what she said (via this morning's Herald): Ms Collins said she was unaware Oravida was having any problems getting its products into...
    Polity | 16-04
  • The Downside of Park and Ride
    Flicking back through older Atlantic Cities posts led to one from last year about Park and Ride catching my eye. It’s a fairly well reasoned cautionary tale which highlights the pitfalls and potential perverse outcomes from something that would appear...
    Transport Blog | 16-04
  • Heartland logic: More people have heard of Fidel Castro than Michael Mann, ...
    This is a guest post from Narahani.   Or is happening and is good for you, or has stopped happening, or is caused by CO2 but only a little, or is about to reverse due to lots of yet-to-be-discovered negative...
    Skeptical Science | 16-04
  • Submission
    Below is my draft submission on the Environmental Reporting Bill. I'm primarily interested in the freedom of information issues; I expect other groups to be focused on the reporting itself. I support the aims of the Environmental Reporting Bill of...
    No Right Turn | 16-04
  • Government’s ‘rock star economy’ throws hospital staff ou...
    The Public Service Association says administrative staff at hospitals around the country are missing out on Bill English’s ‘rock star...
    PSA | 16-04
  • Lip service: it’s all climate action ever gets from Key & Co
    As expected, the New Zealand government’s response to the IPCC’s Working Group 3 report on mitigating climate change pays lip service to the science, while maintaining that NZ is doing all that can be expected. Climate change minister Tim Groser’s...
    Hot Topic | 16-04
  • Progress of FCV “slave ships” Bill is good news – but much work remai...
    The Maritime Union of New Zealand says the progress of the “slave ships” Bill in the New Zealand Parliament is good news – but much work remains to be done....
    MUNZ | 16-04
  • Judith Collins’ reputation dependent on Slater’s scandals
    Judith Collins' reputation as the possible next leader of the National party is in shreds. Her reputation as a minister of the crown in the Key owned National party caucus is in tatters. A resignation is the only honorable thing...
    the Irascible Curmudgeon | 16-04
  • Photo of the Day: Red III
    Learning Your Stripes, 2013, Regan Gentry, Papatoetoe. Commissioned by Auckland Council aer  ...
    Transport Blog | 16-04
  • The cost of tax cheats
    How much do corporate tax cheats cost? In the US, over US$180 billion a year:US taxpayers would need to pay an average of $1,259 more a year to make up the federal and state taxes lost to corporations and individuals...
    No Right Turn | 16-04
  • Power prices soar on the eve of winter
    On the eve of winter as New Zealanders are turning on their heaters, power prices have soared sky high, Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer says. “Energy Minster Simon Bridges claimed in Parliament that prices were estimated to rise 2.4 per...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Workers can kiss goodbye to Easter Sunday off
    The Government’s decision to “reprioritise” scarce labour inspector resources by abandoning the enforcement of Easter Sunday Shop Trading laws means workers can kiss goodbye to a guaranteed day off, says Labour’s Associate Labour Issues spokesperson Darien Fenton. “The Labour Minister...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Businesses need to respect workers this Easter
    Businesses intent on flouting Easter shopping laws should face stiff penalties, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today. This Easter, at least one major garden centre chain intends to open on Good Friday despite this being in breach...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney's Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members' ballot. “It’s time the Government acted in the interests of families,” Sue Moroney says. “National has tried every...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the price for Genesis far too low in a desperate attempt to beef up demand....
    Labour | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Associate Immigration spokesperson. “In the past 12 months, temporary...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Since 2009 resignation rates among sworn staff have...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand to revisit its decision to evict an essential community organisation in Christchurch with only eight weeks notice.Yesterday at the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence support services the organisation...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Auckland Council has implemented a by-law banning the use of psychoactive...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination after revelations that three out of seven properties sold in Wanganui tested positive for methamphetamine,...
    Labour | 17-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Before his departure, John Key said he would wait until all...
    Labour | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today.The report tabled in Parliament yesterday shows that total use of ozone depleting gases in New Zealand has...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.  ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Collins must admit misleading Parliament
    ACC Minister Judith Collins must front up and admit she has misled Parliament over ACC’s policy to stop paying compensation to clients who refused to fill in its privacy form, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Judith Collins claimed Labour...
    Labour | 16-04
  • English confirms he has no plan to raise wages
    Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed he has absolutely no plans to lift wages, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues, Andrew Little says. “Bill English told the Chamber of Commerce yesterday that workers could expect a rise in average income of...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Govt careless and callous about threatened birds
    The National Government is increasing the threat to two of the world's most threatened and unique birds by opening up Victoria Forest Park to petroleum drilling, the Green Party said today.Scientists have recently published a ranking of the 100 most...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Genesis: The biggest fire sale of them all
    National has finished its asset sales with a massive bonfire of a fire sale, showing once and for all how much of a disaster this programme was, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Just 68,000 Kiwis bought shares in Genesis,...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Interest rates rise but only smokes increasing
    Mortgage rate rises are making life harder for homeowners, and many of them will be surprised the latest CPI figures show inflation would be zero were it not for tobacco tax hikes, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “New Zealanders...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Term One Report Card for Hekia Parata
    Assignment Teacher’s Comments Grade      ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students but said nothing about it, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Exams are stressful enough...
    Labour | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    The ACC Minister needs to front up and explain what, if any, changes she has made to the broken culture of ACC rather than denying that she has any part to play in the dysfunction of her Ministry, the Green...
    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being adopted nationwide, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It is a massive victory for those in the...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Darien Fenton says. Due to speak to a cycling rally at...
    Labour | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour Leader Speech to the Institute of Directors 15 April 2014, Auckland It's a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of Directors has a proud history of developing New Zealand's...
    Labour | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy relationship between the National Party and this company, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Workers faced with redundancy at Canterbury Yarns need a redundancy support co-ordinator, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Last week, Canterbury Yarns was placed in receivership. Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have...
    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Tribute for Maungaharuru- Tangitu settlement
    Labour Member of Parliament for Ikaroa-Rāwhiti, Meka Whaitiri paid tribute to Maungaharuru-Tangitu today as their Treaty of Waitangi settlement became law. “The Bill acknowledges Treaty breaches that left Maungaharuru-Tangitu virtually landless. Today we were reminded of the history, mamae, loss...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Neglected rural and regional roads will cost more lives
    The government must take urgent action to prevent more accidents to truck drivers and other road users of increased logging trucks on neglected roads, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Transport spokesperson. “The dangers to drivers and other road users in the...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Judith Collins’ refusal to answer a disgrace
    If John Key is holding his Ministers to any standards at all, he must make Judith Collins answer questions about the senior Chinese official she met during her taxpayer-funded visit to China last October, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Judith...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Ryall needs to heed hospital workforce issues
    The public health workforce, the same one Tony Ryall argues is making a lot of progress is facing increased pressure and staff burnout through his continued shuffling of the deckchairs, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Mr Ryall uses all...
    Labour | 10-04
  • That Sinking Feeling: Labour’s urgent need for persuasive words and coura...
    THE LATEST ROY MORGAN POLL has Labour on 28.5 percent (down 3.5 percent) and the Greens on 11.5 percent (down 1.5 percent). At 40 percent, the combined vote of the two main centre-left parties has fallen 5 percentage points since...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Why the Labour movement should support a Universal Basic Income
    The Mana movement’s support of the idea of a universal basic income is a welcome development. It could become one of the litmus issues that define the party and prove extremely popular. If Mana are in a position to do...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Legal high and cannabis regulation
    I marched through Henderson last month with my fellow Westies to express our concern about the impact of so called “legal highs” on our community. Some people chanted loudly calling for banning, some expressing anger at the parliamentarians who voted...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Know your Tory fellow travellers and ideologues: John Bishop, Taxpayers Uni...
    . . On 19 March, I reported on the Board members of the so-called “Taxpayers Union”. With one exception, every single member of the Taxpayers Union Board was a current (or recent) card-carrying member or supporter of the National and/or...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • GUEST BLOG: Daniel Bruce – Internet Party: What Seems Ridiculous To The O...
    Imagine you’re a 18-21 year old, from a working class family. You’ve never had a landline phone at home, because your parents can’t afford the fixed monthly bills, so everyone in your familiy has a pre-pay mobile phone. Because of the same tight...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release We don’t need any more official reports. We know the problem and we have the plans....
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release New Zealanders do not want asset sales and they do not want the Government wasting millions of dollars on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground Monday, 27 Aug 2012 | Press Release Instead of betting on a boom and bust industry and selling off assets the government needs to invest in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance Sunday, 26 Aug 2012 | Press Release It is not fair that many rich New Zealanders are cheating on their tax. National’s 2010 tax cuts, that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release In its rush to sell our assets, National has found itself in a crisis of its...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Privacy across all departments needs checking
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Privacy across all departments needs checking Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release “People don’t have a choice about giving their information to the state so the Government has an absolute duty to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Restoring public trust and confidence is an essential goal and will require very major change starting from the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government must front up on full costs of asset sales
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government must front up on full costs of asset sales Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release It’s time for the Government to front up over just how much these asset sales are...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Our society has never been as unequal as it is today. New research from the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release “It would be a shock for any other Government to introduce such a self-defeatist piece of legislation but unfortunately...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney’s Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members’ ballot. “It’s...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 | Press Release Christchurch cannot afford to lose this agency The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Resignation rates among cops soar The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Work visa problems need monitoring The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today. The report...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • The issues behind the possible MANA-Internet Party Alliance
      Last weekend Kim Dotcom spoke at MANAs AGM to discuss the possibility of the Internet Party and MANA Party working together to defeat John Key this election. As someone who knows both Hone and Kim, I have a unique...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Manufacturing Upgrade   Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.   – The claims and opinions...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Get work on 29th and the ANZAC spirit deserts the TPPA
      Groser and co would have been spitting tacks last week as the ANZAC spirit deserted the TPPA negotiations. Australia has done a deal directly with Japan which undercuts the demand for Japan to opening all agriculture in the TPPA....
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • No fracking solution to climate change
    Some British tabloids and oil lobbyists have jumped on comments made by an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author that fracking could play a role in addressing climate change as an argument for it here in Aotearoa, so is fracking...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: At Last: A Manufacturing Policy Date of Release:  Thursday, April 17, 2014 Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Drone murder of New Zealander “justified” by Prime Minister
    Yesterday Prime Minister John Key justified the extrajudicial killing of a New Zealander in a US drone strike in Yemen with a few cynical, callous words at a stand-up press conference. Key said he’d been briefed by our spy agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Secret Policeman’s Ball
      Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball is back in New Zealand for one night of some of the best stand-up comedy from both national and international comics The freedom to provoke and in some cases offend is essential to the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • A case study of racism by Police at Auckland Airport
    A couple of days ago I returned from Samoa after attending a family matter and some contract work. Spending a few days in the warmth of our homeland was welcome relief from the cold weather starting to make its presence...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • An acute shortage of emergency youth housing
    The housing crisis is effecting everyone in Christchurch but some are more vulnerable than others. Recently I attended a workshop on emergency youth housing hosted by the 298 Youth Health Centre, who I worked for from 2001-2003. Over fifty people...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The Oceans Issue
    The ‘Earth’ is 71% water but our oceans are the last frontier. The oceans are huge, relatively unexplored, full of weird and wonderful diversity. In New Zealand we’re never far from the sea, and our identity, our landscapes, our communities,...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Fear of South Auckland
    Fear of South Auckland...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress
    Global unions the ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) and IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural and Hospitality Workers) today applauded the steps forward made in preventing often shocking abuse of crews on fishing vessels in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Families before commerce at Easter
    Families before commerce at Easter The retail workers’ union has hit back at critics of New Zealand's modest Easter trading restrictions. "Some things are more important than going to the mall, and for just three and a half days each...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Easter trading laws archaic, in need of overhaul
    Press release: ACT New Zealand Easter trading laws are outdated and in need of a major overhaul, said ACT leader Jamie Whyte today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • ALCP welcomes Campbell Live poll result
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party welcomes last night's Campbell Live poll, saying it is an overdue reality check for public opinion on personal cannabis use....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Q+A This Week 20/4/14
    Q+A This Week SUNDAY 20 APRIL, 9AM ON TV ONE The latest on the US-NZ relationship from the US military’s top man in the Pacific, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear . Deputy Political Editor Michael Parkin asks him whether we’re allies,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Community detention for pokie theft
    A 67-year-old former company director, convicted of stealing pokie machine profits, was today sentenced to six months community detention, 160 hours of community work and ordered to make reparation of $6,000....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Waitangi National Trust Board Amendment Bill
    The Māori Affairs Committee is inviting public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 14 May 2014....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Collaboration stops drugs from crossing borders
    Collaboration between Hong Kong and New Zealand Customs has stopped millions of dollars worth of drugs coming into New Zealand this year, with a number of seizures and arrests in both countries....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Call for public enquiry into the future of farming
    Fish & Game NZ is calling for a public enquiry “to examine the future of agriculture in New Zealand”....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Comment on Labour Policy Announcement by NZMEA President
    “This policy release from the Labour Party is so important that if it becomes government policy it would define a shift in New Zealand’s culture,” says Brian Willoughby President of the NZMEA and Managing Director of Plinius Audio and Contex...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Manufacturing policy makes sense but….
    On the surface much of Labour's prescription for manufacturing is sound though questions remain over some of the detail not yet announced, the Employers and Manufacturers Association says....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Where Are The 15,000 Jobs?
    “Paula Bennett is today proudly telling New Zealand that beneficiary numbers have decreased by 15,000 in the past year. There is no proud declaration that 15,000 jobs have been created in the same period,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty spokesperson,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Change of approach to government procurement needed
    The rail engineering industry has been totally let down by National’s lack of manufacturing policy, and Labour’s measures outlined today represent a marked shift in approach to supporting domestic industries, the RMTU said today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Depreciation Policy Shouldn’t Be Just for Pet Industries
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Labour’s announcement to beef up rates of depreciation in the manufacturing sector, but is questioning why David Cunliffe is picking winners rather than applying the policy across all sectors. Jordan Williams,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • FIFA U-20 World Cup NZ 2015 Kick Off Times Announced
    An array of kick-off times to suit football fans of all ages has been confirmed for the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015. With 52 matches spread across the nation, the public will be able to enjoy a collection...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • “Legitimate purpose” provides no protection under 167 form
    On Radio New Zealand today, the Privacy Commissioner indicated that ACC could only request information that was "relevant" for a "legitimate purpose". His view was therefore that the ACC167 form is not a "blank cheque" or...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • State: still keeping you safe on the road this Easter
    The long-awaited Easter/ Anzac break is nearly upon us while the weather may have taken a turn for the worse in several parts of the country, many Kiwis will still be packing up their cars to take a road trip....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Govt plan for community input into residential red zone
    Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Governor-General to visit Turkey
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, is to visit Turkey next week to lead New Zealand’s representation at the annual Gallipoli commemorations....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority on the death of Adam Palmer while in Police custody found the actions of Police were justified during the arrest. The report also found that Police took all possible steps to try...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
    New boundaries for the country’s 64 General and seven Māori electorates have been finalised – with an additional electorate created in Auckland. The 2014 Representation Commission has completed its statutory role of reviewing and redrawing electorate...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
    Save the Children New Zealand welcomes a new treaty which allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
    Labour takes manufacturing seriously Manufacturing workers and employers will all benefit from economic policies announced today by the Labour Party leader, David Cunliffe. The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union has welcomed the announcement...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Manufacturing policy welcomed
    “Today’s announcement of Labour’s manufacturing policy is very welcome,” says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg. “Just as many other developed countries are realising, having a strong manufacturing sector pays off in good jobs, retaining...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Operation Unite – a Blitz on Drunken Violence
    New Zealand Police are hoping to reduce the number of victims from alcohol related crime by asking the public to say ‘Yeah, Nah’ more often this holiday weekend....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Dunne Speaks
    Dunne Speaks 17 April 2014 There have been a number of harrowing cases presented this week about the impact of psychoactive substances on vulnerable young people. At one level, the tales are deeply disturbing. It is awful to see anyone...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Research announcement welcomed
    A leading Māori researcher has welcomed the announcement of the 2014 Te Pūnaha Hihiko - Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund by Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce and Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    At Last: A Manufacturing Policy FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company,...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Republic campaigners still positive after royal visit
    "Campaigners for a New Zealand Head of State are still feeling positive after ten days of royal events" says NZ Republic Chair, Savage. "Our polling before the visit showed increased support for a kiwi head of state. We have a...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Selling homes to foreigners benefits New Zealanders
    Winston Peters has apparently convinced David Cunliffe that when foreigners buy New Zealand property they make New Zealanders worse off. Mr Cunliffe has announced his intention to adopt Winston Peters’ policy of banning foreigners from buying...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes Key’s Rejection of ‘Fat Tax’
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Prime Minister John Key’s rejection of fat and sugar taxes ahead of this year's election. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Union, says:...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Law Commission Paper on a New Crown Civil Proceedings Act
    The Law Commission has released A New Crown Civil Proceedings Act for New Zealand , its Issues Paper on reforming the Crown Proceedings Act 1950. The Issues Paper proposes a new statute to replace the Crown Proceedings Act 1950....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for NZ workers
    Maritime Union says focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for New Zealand workers...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Make the choice to stay safe on the road
    With Easter and Anzac Day giving us two successive long weekends this year there will be a lot of happy families preparing for trips....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Students Welcome Engagement with StudyLink
    The New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) has welcomed the improved performance from StudyLink in 2014. There is no doubt that getting their loans and allowances processed on time makes it easier for students to concentrate on being...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised
    Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised Imagine if you could not access vital news and information. What would you do?...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Public lose interest in this council, 2016 to be a watershed
    The second term Auckland Council is proving to be an interesting one and very different to the inaugural 2010 – 2013 Governing Body. We are currently going through a budget round to lock in where council’s $3b expenditure is directed...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour and National join forces in new Maori confiscations
    Chris McKenzie, former-treaty negotiator and Te Tai Hauauru Maori party candidate, says that the Minister of Primary Industries’ plans to remove temporary exemptions for vessel operators derived from settlement negotiations is akin to confiscation...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • The FCV Bill – Flagging 30 years of failures?
    Paying seafarers at least a minimum wage under the Minimum Wage Act 1983 has applied to the New Zealand fishing industry for more than 30 years. It was, and is, a basic protection which had two universals – it was...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014
    Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014 Kiwis across the country are getting together over a cuppa to make a difference in the lives of people living in poverty in the developing world. They’re getting involved in Oxfam’s Morning Tea, a fun and...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • 1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know How
    1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know Where to Go...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award
    Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third - The criteria for judging are by assessing the transnational (a corporation with 25% or more foreign ownership) that has the most negative impact in each or all of the following categories: economic dominance...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • ACC’s Strategy to stop compensation using ACC 167 Form
    On Radio NZ national’s morning report on 15 April 2014, ACC’s spokesperson Sid Miller denied the non-compliance was just a way for ACC to refuse people....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Workers support plain packaging of tobacco
    The CTU have today presented to the health select committee in support of plain packaging of tobacco. “Any steps that can be taken to lower smoking rates will result in New Zealand workers and their families having healthier and better...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Christchurch Housing Accord a Joke
    Christchurch Housing Accord a Joke Hugh Pavletich Performance Urban Planning Christchurch New Zealand 16 April 2014 The Housing Accord entered in to today between the Government and the Christchurch City Council, can only be described as a joke. Christchurch...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Infographic : World Giving Index 2013
    Infographic from Charities Aid Foundation World Giving Index 2013 A Global View Of Giving Trends (click to see full size version)...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Tranter questions CEO’s assurances
    “There is a bizarre notion among bureaucrats, politicians and others that if they say something then it must be so - despite all evidence to the contrary” said David Tranter, Health spokesman for Democrats for Social Credit....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • UNICEF NZ Urges Progress on Plain Packaging of Tobacco
    In its oral submission to the Health Select Committee today, UNICEF NZ expressed its strong support for the Smoke-free Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill as a measure that will help reduce the uptake of smoking, and urged parliament...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Whitebait partners look for solutions
    Waikato-Tainui, local marae, councils and agencies are working together to better manage whitebait fisheries at Port Waikato following the compilation of a new report....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • NZ’s biggest killer fails to receive the Roger
    The Smokefree Coalition is disappointed Imperial Tobacco did not win the Roger Award for Worst Trans-national Company operating in New Zealand, despite manufacturing products that kill 5000 New Zealanders every year....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
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