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What do you value?

Written By: - Date published: 10:16 pm, January 30th, 2014 - 53 comments
Categories: Deep stuff - Tags: ,

Tim Watkins has written a piece on Labour’s Best Start policy.

Down in the comments were the most incredible remarks I have read in support of the policies.

They cut through all of criticism of the policy in way which I had not seen before and well, basically, they blew my little mind. The comments were written by Ian Hassall, New Zealand’s first Children’s Commisioner. Here is the exchange between Tim and Ian…

 

Ian:Tim, one of the arguments for universalism you missed was that it places a value directly on children and the people who care for them, whatever their financial circumstances. Since Labour’s policy announcement the arguments for and against that I have seen have been mainly economic, incentive, political and moral. The signal that children are valued and can be central to a new politics whose values differ from those of the last thirty years is central to what I understood David Cunliffe to be saying.

 

Tim: Ian, I’d be interested in your take on this, especially as you mention morality. Is it economically and morally sound to simply give money to almost all parents who have a baby?

You mention incentives, but there are no incentives involved in this, no quid pro quo the recipients have to offer in return for the rest of us offering them financial support. So presumably the argument is simply that $60 a week – or to be less cynical, some form of state support – should be the right of every citizen? Because otherwise you’d target it, wouldn’t you? Really, why not target this?

And what values from 30 years ago are you refering to? The value of the same for all?

 

Ian: No, I think the argument goes that children are of value to society and that the time, love and material investment made by parents and others in the early years has a payoff for society as Heckman has shown. A cash subsidy acknowledges this. The values system that denies these things is encapsulated in the saying, ‘There is no such thing as society’. This values system which has held sway in public policy for thirty years and contributed to the atomisation of a generation is not capable of sustaining our civilisation and needs to be replaced as the dominant driver by an alternative set of values.An alternative set of values which includes compassion, selflessness and a longer term perspective is typically what is evoked by caring for children, and can be encouraged by a public policy in which children’s needs and

interests are central. A society that looks after its children is an agreeable society and one that has a future.

This is not to deny that rampant greed and selfishness is one, possibly essential, driver of our society, which you will have been reminded of if you saw the movie, ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, or if you read the ‘Alex’ cartoons in the Herald but it should be put back in its box and not contaminate public discourse and public policy.

 

From this perspective, the criticisms of Labour from John Key are irrelevant and petty and the true motivations of Nationals policies can be seen for what they are: election year concessions from a party that no longer believes in society.

The Labour party is slowly becoming old school again. Not 1984 old school…proper old school. It started With the membership’s victory last year and now the policies are starting to come out. They may be fumbling the ball a bit, they may not have the slickness of Key but what they are doing…is the right thing.

 

Geoff

53 comments on “What do you value?”

  1. Lionel 1

    What a super post would love it if Mr Hassalls comments were more universally broadcast

  2. geoff 2

    The 2nd last paragraph is my words, not part of the quote as presently shown. Could someone with superpowers please fix? Thanks.

    Done

  3. Anne 3

    Splendid stuff and it really encapsulates what most have been trying to say here at the Standard.

    I give Tim Watkins credit for a reasoned and intelligent summation of the Best Start programme. He may have reservations about aspects of the policy, but compared to certain other journalists – who shall remain unnamed – it is refreshingly fair.

    Surely someone like Ian Hassall is a far more appropriate person to be seeking an opinion from, than the RWNJs that are usually wheeled out by the media for comment.

  4. xtasy 4

    I value a HUMAN and humane, fair, just and democratic society!

    I feel we do no longer have this under this government, for various reasons!

    For instance we have welfare “reforms” that are to me an abomination, as they indicate the first signs of a society, that will favour eugenics:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenics
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenics_in_the_United_States
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/From_Darwin_to_Hitler

    We have a ‘Principal Health Advisor’ working for MSD and WINZ, who thinks that benefit dependence is like “drug dependence”, and he also believes that most suffering mental illness and musculo skeletal conditions suffer merely from “illness belief”. He, and his master “educator”, Professor Mansel Aylward, from the UK (formerly DWP, working with ATOS, and being paid by corrupt UNUM insurance to develop suitably biased “research” on disabled and sick), have come to the conclusion that work is the best “therapy”, is generally “good for your health”, and that sick and disabled should be challenged and pushed into work, to contribute.

    The logical conclusion is, if they cannot, they are not “worthy”. It sounds a bit like the “work will set you free” cry by the NAZIs.

    We have further signs of this ideology taking a foot hold in the medical profession in NZ:

    “Overcoming and Challenging Adversity – the Prequel (Social Welfare in NZ 2013)” – a presentation by Dr Bratt, similar to others, and it is found here:

    http://www.conference.co.nz/files/docs/pmaanz13/speaker%20presentation/1610%20david.pdf

    On page 10 of 20 it says:

    “Long Acting Reversible Contraception
    • Commonly known as LARCs
    • All female beneficiaries and female
    dependents of beneficiaries over the age of
    16yrs are eligible to have the costs associated
    with the consultation, assessment , insertion
    and if required the removal of LARC covered
    by a Special Needs Grant from Work & Income
    • This only applies to Subsidised LARCs
    • And this means it does not normally cover
    Mirena IUCD insertion.”

    It suggests that women on benefits get such LARCs, to stop “breeding”, as their “breeding” is unwelcome and does not contribute to societal wellbeing!

    Hey, that is just part of it, he also likens benefit dependence to “drug dependence”, in many other presentations.

    Now this happens here right in NZ, why is nobody standing up against it? Some are, but most are silent, ignore it, or even support this. How “NAZI” are some Kiwis, I ask?

    It is time to take a bloody stand, and this is important, the question here is: “What do you value?”

    There is more to it, but think, take some time, do some reading, please:

    http://accforum.org/forums/index.php?/topic/15264-welfare-reform-the-health-and-disability-panel-msd-the-truth-behind-the-agenda/

    This is a long distance away from what David Cunliffe was proposing with Best Start, and of course, the critics like to shoot it to pieces, to justify what I just mentioned above. Shame on Key, National, ACT AND the mainstream media, selectively criticising Labour and Greens, but never looking at lies and manipulations or failings by Key and the government we have!

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 4.1

      Thank god someone has finally seen the truth! Yes, it’s all about eugenics!

    • poem 4.2

      +1 Xtasy !!!

    • My God, these eugenicist Nazis are making beneficiaries… er… eligible for free contraception. Oh, the humanity!

      • xtasy 4.3.1

        Yes, what was that saying or song again? “They started with the unionists, but hey, I was not a unionist. Then they started with …” .. and so it goes on.

        This is about unacceptable expectations placed on beneficiaries only, not the wider population. It may be presented as “voluntary”, but in reality there is more to it than the wording suggests!

        And much of what the Nazis did, was initially also brought in with a “moderate” approach, like the work camps to supposedly “reform” the “antisocial elements”, and teach them “work habits” – which later were turned into mass murder camps.

        This measure by WINZ may be “promoted” for females of child bearing age on benefits, as a “voluntary” measure, but the consequence of having another baby while being on a benefit is already, that the mother will be forced to work after the baby turns only 1 year of age. If a “client” does not cooperate and look for work the sanctions of cutting or stopping the benefit will be applied. So how can this be “voluntary” then?

        Anything unreasonable, unjust, inhumane, even while the perpetrators claim it to be only “voluntary”, while it is combined with harsh, punitive sanctions, must be STOPPED right in ITS BEGINNINGS.

        If the German people had in sufficient numbers adhered to that civic task, Hitler may never have been able to do half the evil he was later able to do!

      • xtasy 4.3.2

        Psycho Milt!

        What about your claim that this is “free”?

        Do you not know that most Special Needs Grants are repayable?

        Too many in the public still believe that beneficiaries get free fridges, washing machines and so forth, same as other necessities, but that is a lie. They have to repay advances that WINZ give them, from their usual and standard benefits, which are actually meant to cover other basic necessities, not including such purchases.

        People are expected to repay these things by saving it out of their food money, so to say.

        Only food grants and a few other grants are not recoverable, and I have myself had to pay for dental and other treatment by cutting down on other spending for food and basic necessities, repaying Special Needs Grants that WINZ paid to the dentist.

        And getting a food grant is not that easy, you must prove that you had other essential costs to cover, before you get one, and it is capped at an amount per annum. After that it is only food banks that help out, and even they expect a letter from WiNZ saying that no SNG is available. Even food banks scrutinise people coming to them!

        Get real and HONEST, thanks!

        • Psycho Milt 4.3.2.1

          They’re just giving them a fucking loan for long-term contraception, not offering it for free? OK, I agree that really isn’t very good. They should be making it way more attractive than that.

  5. Zorr 5

    I love those comments – they are fabulous

    Every day there are opinion pieces written espousing the virtues of decades gone by when the writers themselves were children, stating that the way they were raised turned them in to the people they are today and that the results speak for themselves because they’ve turned in to very fine upstanding citizens. These same people then go on to criticize the current generation for not showing enough respect to their elders and becoming materialistic and disconnected in the modern consumer culture. I personally feel that this is all because the new generations raised in the neo-liberal era are being told by society that they are worth nothing unless they are capable of consumption and that unless they consume, then society has nothing for them. You reap what you sow.

    I hope to raise my children as whole individuals who are capable of integrating with society in the ways they find most beneficial to themselves and others and not for personal gain. To encourage them to think outside of consuming and to ask not what is best for them but what is best for us. Saying to all new parents “here, have this small token of cash per week to assist with the difficult task of raising the new generation that is the future of our country” is the least we can do and we should do more. Saying it’s too hard is for the likes of John Key who, when presented with such a problem, can only muse about changing the flag. Or reading My Pet Goat.

  6. xtasy 6

    Re Nazism and history, watch this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67iOt9133VI

    A must watch history documentary!!!

    “What do you value?”

    What do Bennett and Key???

  7. Camryn 7

    I think Ian might be forcing too strong of a dichotomy here. It is possible to believe that well raised children are a benefit to wider society and to not believe that universal cash payments are the best way to achieve that or demonstrate that children are valued. In fact, I’d say that everyone believes that well raised children are a long-term benefit to wider society!

    Ian appears to be counterpointing to Margaret Thatcher’s “no society” statement which, unsurprisingly, was also a very “black and white” statement where shades of grey clearly exist.

    Long story short… it might feel nice to believe that your particular course of action is most strongly associated with compassion and respect for all people, and that others are uncaring and cruel, but it’s closer to the truth that all people are compassionate and respectful and that different political views arise from that common base. Those who think they have a monopoly on compassion risk blinding themselves and/or just come across as simplistic, smug and self-congratulatory.

    • Ad 7.1

      Agreed. Unhelpful to imply John Key equates to Margaret Thatcher.

      Labour, or anyone, will not win this poorly presented argument unless they can do retail politics into the media better than they have over the last week.
      Apart from red meat to the base, it’s a poor start to campaign year.

      • felix 7.1.1

        When has John Key ever said anything about society that wasn’t a disparaging remark?

        • Ad 7.1.1.1

          Oh please. Reams of social policy. Don’t have to agree with it.
          This ain’t the moment for replaying We Are The World.
          Key has thrown excellent chaff out the Hercules window.

          Labour needed a counter-punch by yesterday, on tv, to get them back on track after the speech.

      • well I never 7.1.2

        I am starting to believe that no matter how they present their policies, values etc. the National machine has thrown so much money at undermining ANY other voices, their power, corrupt as it is, will simply leave any opposition pissing into the wind. Would like to be proved wrong.

        • Ad 7.1.2.1

          What defeatist crap.

          The team needs to perform better; rehearsing the week more, not just the speech, would help.

    • miravox 7.2

      “it’s closer to the truth that all people are compassionate and respectful and that different political views arise from that common base.”

      I guess seeing as Whaleoil has been down for awhile you’ve not had much chance to see that this might not necessarily be the case.

    • Hamish 7.3

      Whoosh

    • Hi Camryn,

      I think you’ve misunderstood what Ian appears to be saying. He is not saying that people who believe that ‘There is no such thing as society’ completely lack compassion, etc..

      What he is saying is that when it comes to determining policy in relation to children the dominant ‘driver’ is ‘individual responsibility’ (i.e., roughly consistent with Thatcher’s attempt to sideline compassion as a fundamental ‘driver’ of policy through discursive phrasing such as ‘There is no such thing as society’). That is, the dominant ‘driver’ of such policy is not ‘compassion’.

      I think that personal responsibility (i.e., doing your best to look after yourself given your circumstances) is a fine virtue. But, when it comes to social policy – especially around families, children and poverty – I simply don’t believe that that should be the dominant ‘driver’.

      I don’t believe it’s appropriate because (a) it assumes that the main cause of economic difficulties is personal (i.e., it gives a psychological explanation for a social issue), which completely falls into the fallacy of psychologism (e.g., saying that rising and falling levels of unemployment are caused by rising and falling levels of indolence in individuals Edit: individuals at the population level, i.e., more or fewer individuals being indolent); and, (b) it has the (unintended?) consequence of creating social division and conflict between those who see themselves as personally competent (as judged largely by economic survival) and those who come to be seen as personally incompetent.

      As Hassall argues, that kind of ‘driver’ can’t sustain a civilised society – that is, a society that fundamentally treats its citizens with civility. Instead we end up with an angry, bitter, hard society in which people are divided into the ‘feral’, on the one hand, and the ‘hardworking Kiwi’, on the other. That atmosphere I find utterly toxic to live in and see as highly regressive.

      For clarity, in my view the argument has nothing to do with particular individuals (on the left or the right) being ‘compassionate’ or otherwise. It’s all about whether or not the fundamental ‘driver’ (‘underlying principle’) of the policy (i.e., your “course of action”) is one of compassion rather than invoking personal responsibility as punishment (i.e., ‘you had the child so you look after it – don’t come looking to me for help. That’ll teach you.’).

      You might call what I’ve termed ‘punishment’ something like ‘tough love’ that still aims to achieve the end of “well raised children” and, ultimately, is based on ‘compassion’. But, in the policy and its implementation’ (e.g., National’s recent welfare reforms) where is the ‘love’, the ‘respect’, the ‘dignity’, the compassion?

      If it’s there it is buried so deep that recipients are unlikely to notice it. And that is asking for trouble.

  8. JK 8

    My maths is not so good, so maybe someone on this thread could help me out.

    We used to have a weekly Family Benefit for children. From memory, in the 1970s, I think it was $6 per week per child. I had two kids – so that was $12 per week per child. I’ve tried to find a comparison online, but the nearest I’ve managed is the Reserve Bank’s inflation calculation for an item of clothing costing $12 in 1970. In 2013, this would have cost $103+

    Here’s the comparison and link.
    http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/monetary_policy/inflation_calculator/

    Clothing that cost $12.00 in quarter 1 of 1970
    would have cost $103.85 in quarter 1 of 2013

    This looks much more generous than Labour’s Best Start but maybe someone else could do a better comparison.

    • millsy 8.1

      I used wages (it seems to me that FB would count as wages), and I got $132.05.

    • bad12 8.2

      JK, the real question i would like to ask, and this question is relevant to all those commenting here at the Standard who brought up families in the era of the Family Benefit,

      Two kids was a small family back then so you didn’t consider having more kids because of the Family Benefit incentive???,

      My interest in the answer to this is obviously as a counter to the ‘wing-nuts’ whine of such programs promoting ‘breeding for money’….

      • greywarbler 8.2.1

        bad12
        If wing-nuts use this sort of emotive term (breeding for money) then immediately discussion on policy relating to fertility should stop until reasonable, informed, experienced and humane people are involved. Which would preclude medical mercenaries with academic and/or business backgrounds. Nothing good can come from people who have that mindset. It is misogynist-laden and anyone using the term as a description of the situation indicates their unsuitability to pass reasoned opinion.

        Good social policy cannot be introduced or critiqued by someone with that approach and attitude.

      • Naturesong 8.2.2

        I am the second child of four born between 1967 and 1975.
        The idea that someone would produce a child to gain an extra $6.00 pw was as laughable then as it is today for $60.00 pw.
        Even so, for a middle class family in a well to do suburb, the family benefit was extremely helpful during times when things were tight – start of the school year, christmas, mortgage rate interest hikes, unexpected expenses etc.

        Also remember that back in the days of the family benefit, there were low levels of unemployment (noting of course that one male earner per family was the norm). Kicking the shit out of the unemployed was not an ever constant meme.

        DPB for single mothers had it’s own stigma that probably owed more to a victorian mindset than it does these days. Though I do wonder if that theme of the immorality of a single mother is not a subtext to the constant attacks on women who receive it these days.

        • greywarbler 8.2.2.1

          Naturesong
          I have looked at actions of Jenny Shipley and her crew of pirates, and come to the conclusion that there is a deep morality prejudice and class disparagement and disdain in NACTs approach to single and solo mothers and fathers, that still now underlies the cry of cost, inefficiency, slackers, etc.

          The fact that they can produce some figures that show this is a consideration in a small percentage sample is an excuse to blanket the lot. They might not bother with facts or figures though. We know from Margaret Bazley’s attack on legal aid that they can just quote some anecdote or reference to some source.

          A word in the ear or even in the air around the ear, of a sensitive National tuned and receiving instrument, is sufficient evidence to give gravitas to extensive law change and ploughing and turning of the policy soil by the good old farmers sons and daughters.

  9. JK 9

    To Bad 12 – two kids were all we could afford at that time (despite receiving Family Benefit – and I had/have friends in a similar position in those days) so I’d say quite definitely that Govt grants to parents to help raise children is NOT an incentive to have more kids.

    Btw, the Family Benefit went directly to the mothers ….. to ensure the money was spent on the kids !

    Should also mention – we didn’t have easy access to childcare either in those days. So very difficult for a mother to go out to work unless she had other supportive family to look after the kids

    • bad12 9.1

      Thanks JK, it would be interesting to hear from other’s commenting here that brought up their kids in the era of the Family Benefit,

      Don’t i know it, with regards to the difficulties of mums going out to work back then, with 4 of us mine had to and it’s a wonder that the stress from the resulting ‘mayhem’ didn’t give Her a coronary…

      • Tracey 9.1.1

        Milk was 4 cents for a pint in 1971.

        I got 5c a week for putting the milk out and bringing it back in. No danger money for taking on the boogieman my bros told me was waiting for me if I stopped at any time

  10. Tracey 10

    Interesting that main media outlets didnt seek comment from the commissioner for children about a policy about children.

    With national now claiming its programme is respo sible for increased bc in chchch is a sign that this is going to be a long year.

  11. greywarbler 11

    This thread is about the Labour policy of helping with costs to families with young children unless they are in the wealthy group.

    It is unpleasant to see the hostility to these families and their children by the self-centred, competitive and money-oriented, exclusive class. Anne points out that Tim Watkins does make an attempt to consider it in a reasoned way. Which is true, but he still seems more hostile to the policy than otherwise.

    Watkins says that Peter Dunne calls Labour’s social welfare a bribe
    This is n example of how people’s understandings are based on their prime approach and we know that Dunne’s political position operates on bribes, so he sees them in everything. His attitude to his useful role in politics is less compromise in return for policy valued to him and more just staying in a role of Man of the People getting good pay.

    Then Tim Watkins enters into the cheapshot comments – the money will be spent on the bloody bach added to someone else’s ‘cigs and lotto’.

    Comment from another man,
    ‘Every second feckless woman in Redfern produced a sprog for the cash. NOT a good way to start a life!’
    Another man, who isn’t ashamed to show his face above this incisive piece of analysis:
    “I’m not sure if they should be classified as feckless or just cynical and manipulative”
    There are other interpretations.

    And then some needed analysis by Ian Hassall, previous Child Commissioner quoted by Geoff above, to which Tim Watkins replies and seems to be hostile to modern social policy with support for the wellbeing of young children and their families. He was Deputy Editor to NZListener wasn’t he? How that once quality magazine deteriorated!

    • JK 11.1

      Yes GreyWarbler I, too, thought Tim Watkins is hostile to the Best Start policy …. hence my attempt to find a comparison in earlier years when everyone got the Family Benefit and there were no snide
      attempts about calling women who had babies feckless, cynical, manipulative.

      Babies were once valued – people could see them as their future. Its really odd these days of falling birthrates that so many do not appreciate them, and are not willing to share in the cost of their upbringing. Maybe these people have just got to the stage where they do not really care about the future – of either their own families (if they have one) or of the rest of humankind.

      • greywarbler 11.1.1

        JK
        I think it is 30 years of neo lib. Twenty to thirty years is a generation. That is enough time to forget, or overlook the important wisdom, culture and experience from previous years And also the forecasts of outcomes for proposed changes that should have been noted and acted to improve or alleviate straight away. Instead we were told by the neo libs that first there would be pain, but then gain, and we were so thick we thought they were wise, and cared about the country, and we could rely on their wise words and all would come right. Instead we have – this.

        I seem to remember people warning about the effects of individualism being pushed. The competitive, me first, proud individualist stereotype being led to believe that they were funding themselves in all their endeavours, and then entitled to all the returns. And of course other people could do the same.

        (But every step of the individualist was being supported, paid for, subsidised by someone else. But this is not apparent, or overlooked.
        Paying for attending university – the state still pays about 70% of the cost for instance.) Schools are all subsidised by the state.

        Any individual who manages to get on without assistance from the state, which should be with the good wishes of the vast majority of the citizens, is likely to be receiving isolationist and anti-social indoctrination, as in cults, controlling religious groups, military and aggression training establishments.

        • JK 11.1.1.1

          greywarbler – yes, I agree with what you’re saying totally but I cannot conceive of any individual managing to get anywhere without assistance from the state because from the very first day they’re born – if born in NZ – they get state assistance. Free maternity care, free hospital care, immunisation – so all those neo-libs decrying a helping hand to parents with new bubs and toddlers are crying hypocritic tears. Shame on them ! As you say they have forgotten what came before . And they haven’t learned their history ….. Shame again on them.

  12. srylands 12

    From the Labour Party website, Labour Best Start Payment Fact Sheet –

    Will the Best Start Payment help to address child poverty?

    Yes. There are about 50,000 children under the age of three living in poverty in New Zealand households. The parents of these children will all receive the full $60 per week Best Start Payment.

    When will families become eligible for the Best Start Payment?

    Funding for the Best Start Payment will be introduced via Budget 2015 and it will come into effect for children born on or after 1 April 2016.

    https://www.labour.org.nz/sites/default/files/issues/labour_best_start_-_best_start_payment_factsheet.pdf

    “… it will come into effect for children born on or after 1 April 2016”

    How does the first statement – “The parents of THESE children – the ones currently in “poverty”” reconcile to the last statement – it will only apply to children born after 2016?

    Looks like the current 50,000 poor kids will need to rely on mum and dad giving them a new sibling in April 2016 (just the opposite of what we should be trying to achieve – the last thing we need is more kids to poor parents.)

    Aside from the lie, the policy will provide most benefits to two groups – (1) Welfare families (who mostly vote Labour anyway) or families on incomes of more than $100,000, who are unlikely to be swayed to vote labour.

    The ones in the middle will be royally fucked off.

    Then there is the 25 Hours free ECE which (like its predecessor) will be very poorly targeted, and, again benefit families on high incomes. The Pasifika families in South Auckland need more ECE centres, and they need high, targeted subsidies (or better 50 hours of quality, free ECE per week). That won’t be possible if you are giving money away to rich people!

    It has been some time since I have seen a political party have a week as bad as Labour has had this week.

    • mickysavage 12.1

      Really weak srylands. There has to be a start date and the complexity of the system means that there will be a delay in implementation.

      Of course if Labour and the Greens win you can submit on the bill and say the scheme should start early because of the urgent need to address poverty and I will agree with you then.

      On your analysis no change should ever be made because someone might miss out.

      Strange, really strange.

    • Hayden 12.2

      Then there is the 25 Hours free ECE which (like its predecessor) will be very poorly targeted, and, again benefit families on high incomes. The Pasifika families in South Auckland need more ECE centres, and they need high, targeted subsidies (or better 50 hours of quality, free ECE per week). That won’t be possible if you are giving money away to rich people!

      You could always* refer to David Cunliffe’s speech:

      Alongside this, we need to expand access to early childhood centres, because free hours aren’t enough if you don’t have a centre in your neighbourhood, or if all the rolls are full.

      In partnership with communities, Labour will fund the development of early childhood centres in lower income communities to ensure there are places for every kid.

      But quantity is no good without quality. This Government has cut funding for qualified teachers in our early childhood centres.

      We think our kids deserve better. That’s why we are restoring those funding cuts, starting with a downpayment in our first year.

      Source: http://thestandard.org.nz/a-nation-of-opportunity-cunliffes-speech/

      * if you weren’t working from a script

    • bad12 12.3

      SSLands, if the last thing we need is more children being born to poor people that is easily fixed by taxing brainless wankers like you and redistributing the proceeds into the hands of those poor people, an act of Capitalist Redistribution,

      Your brainless whine has been well answered previously and ‘Best Start’ as it should gives to those with the least the most along with Labour announcing more ECE centers will be core to the policy with an emphasis on the provision of these as a priority in South Auckland,

      Just to follow up on another of your whining pieces of bullshit surrounding a comment made in ‘Open Mike’ yesterday where i pointed out quite specifically the bullshit inherent in your ”voters run from Socialism” mistake, besides the voters NOT running from the Working for Families scheme, the opposite occurred in fact and Slippery the Prime Minister who decried Working for Families as Communism like the rat and Liar He is once in Government kept the policy in place,

      The Australian ‘Baby Bonus’ and if anyone was going to ‘breed for money’ the $5000 lump sum payment for having a baby would have had them doing just that is simply more of your bullshit as it has been shown that the Australian birth rate didn’t rise by any abnormal rate,

      What happened when the Labour Government cancelled it’s own ‘Baby Bonus’ scheme, who would have thunk it, voted out of office at the following election, hardly the tale of the voter running ‘from’ Capitalist Redistribution that you whine on about, more like the people demanding more of it…

      • srylands 12.3.1

        “What happened when the Labour Government cancelled it’s own ‘Baby Bonus’ scheme, who would have thunk it, voted out of office at the following election, hardly the tale of the voter running ‘from’ Capitalist Redistribution that you whine on about, more like the people demanding more of it…”

        You think Australians voted for Tony Abbott because they wanted “Capitalist Redistribution”? Good grief.

        Your posts become increasingly ridiculous. You come across as an unemployed 1950s style socialist.

        You can whine all you want about the Government. They are looking increasingly likely to be reelected. Who would have thunk that a few months ago, eh?

      • srylands 12.3.2

        “the Australian birth rate didn’t rise by any abnormal rate”

        Good grief of course it didn’t. Why on earth would a payment of $5,000 influence the birth rate in a country as rich as Australia? Is that your measure of policy failure? What drugs (apart from tobacco) are you on in your State house all day?

        • srylands 12.3.2.1

          BTW the $5,000 payment in Australia was a response to the GFC. It was used to buy TVs, boats and stamp duty on houses.

          The Labour Policy will benefit very poor people and rich people. It will fuck off the middle = vote loser. Watch the next polls for the 2% drop in the combined Green-Left vote. Were you looking for that?

          If you want to help poor people give decent ECE care to people in South Auckland and take it off people in Kandallah. Why isn’t Labour doingt that if it cares about “poor” people.

          Instead it is pissing away a fortune on a near universal $60 for kids not even born yet!!

          That leaves you bad12 to defend it when you know it is crap and then to wheel out your 1950s socialist class warfare crap.

          Keep going by all means. Bring it on and you can have another three years of national.

          You are like the English cricket team dressing room – you say “yeah we can do it” but there is no heart.

          Go have another smoke out the back and smile at the neighbours. Maybe read your electricity meter for entertainment.

          • Colonial Viper 12.3.2.1.1

            Oh look a foreign based foreigner all wise on matters NZ. Go away.

          • hamish 12.3.2.1.2

            Fuck you’re a useless gimp sslands the baby bonus began in austrailia in 2002!
            I think wee wankers like you hate the labour policy cos it reminds you that no one would ever want to breed with you. And thank christ for that!

  13. greywarbler 13

    JK
    I think it is 30 years of neo lib. Twenty to thirty years is a generation. That is enough time to forget, or overlook the important wisdom, culture and experience from previous years, and forecasts of outcomes for proposed changes. I seem to remember people warning about the effects of individualism being pushed. The competitive, me first, proud individualist stereotype being led to believe that they were funding themselves in all their endeavours, and then entitled to all the returns. And of course other people could do the same.

    (But every step of the individualist was being supported, paid for, subsidised by someone else. But this is not apparent, or overlooked.
    Paying for attending university – the state still pays about 70% of the cost for instance.) Schools are all subsidised by the state.

    Any individual who manages to get on without assistance from the state, which should be with the good wishes of the vast majority of the citizens, is likely to be receiving isolationist and anti-social indoctrination, as in cults, controlling religious groups, military and aggression training establishments.

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      Correct. A critical part of the success of neoliberalism is the starving out of cultural memory and the creation of social amnesia, replacing societal and historical depth with superficial commercial and corporate values of consumption and hedonism.

      The destruction and impoverishment of the arts and humanities as well as public broadcasting is all part and parcel of this.

  14. captain hook 14

    Tim Watkins is typical of the NEW New Zealand in the process of creation by crosby textor who have a policy of denying anything in the media that is any good and which has been proposed by anyone in opposition to their client.
    Democracy in New Zealand is under attack from payed flunkeys and nobody can do anything about it because of the grip they have on the media.

  15. greywarbler 15

    Sorry folks. I put a comment at 11.24 which went into moderation, I then lost it, F5 and Home did
    not bring it to light. But I had copied it so have just put it up again 11.45, with a few add ons, and I looked for it and found my 11.24am one. Betcha the new one will come up again soon, near JKs, to whom I was trying to reply before. So sorry I’m at a loss to know what I did, except my computer is going slow, and may be getting out of sync somehow.

    [lprent: Saw that. Released it. I'll have a look as I do this sweep.

    One thing to try these days with sluggish machines is to close and start browsers. I've noticed that webkit in particular tends to soak up a lot of RAM and CPU when it has frequent javascript running on a page. Seen it on both chrome and safari. ]

  16. alloytoo 16

    A good way to ensure that babies grow up to be constructive members of society is to encourage the current generation of productive hard workers to have children and instill those values in them.

    Labour’s policy should exclude beneficiaries and be part of extended parental leave policies.

    (That would of course exclude most of labour’s support base :-)

    • JK 16.1

      Just pathetic – alloytoo. To be expected from a Nat ….

    • Polish Pride 16.2

      Or instead we coulde redesign the society and system that we live in to have the goal of making people happy and putting in place the things that are required for that to happen…

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    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Solid Energy decision delay sensible
    Today’s announcement by the Board of Solid Energy that it will delay making a final decision on re-entering the Pike River mine is a sensible move, Labour’s MP for  West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “It has been clear for some...
    Labour | 28-10
  • New York Green Bank off to a $1B start
    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced late last week the New York Green Bank’s first NZD$1 billion tranche of green energy investments. The projects, which are difficult for the private sector to finance, are now possible by New York Green...
    Greens | 28-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 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
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • False birth registration brings home detention
    A Whangarei woman who attempted to register the birth of a fictitious child to claim a sole parent benefit was sentenced to six months home detention in the Whangarei District Court today....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Family of Robert Ellis demand a proper investigation
    The family of a New Zealander killed in Indonesia are growing increasingly concerned at the lack of information they’ve received, and the handling of the investigation into his murder....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Minister of Health must account for aged care workers’ pay
    The New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW NZ) congratulates rest-home worker Kristine Bartlett on her landmark claim for equal pay from her employer and successfully pursuing this to the Court of Appeal....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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