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Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

Written By: - Date published: 5:40 pm, February 13th, 2013 - 50 comments
Categories: International, poverty - Tags: ,

As ever, too much National to complain about, too little time.  So just 3 quickly –

Wrong:
As excellently covered by Karol, but too quickly dropped by our papers, the Salvation Army’s excellent annual State of the Nation report gives the Government a D on Child Poverty, Youth Employment and Housing Affordability.

Quite rightly the Sallies’ Major Campbell Roberts says:

“If our children came home with a ‘D’ from school, most of us would have a vigorous plan of action to turn it around. That same vigour is needed from our political and Government agency leaders.”

Roberts said we needed to stop saying, “She’ll be Right” and start saying, “It’s not alright” when it came to these issues.

And quite rightly Jacinda Ardern profiles the Government’s efforts:

“seems content to sit back while things steadily get worse for our kids”.

“Giving [the Government] a below average ‘D’ for progress on child poverty, the report makes specific reference to the Ministerial Committee on Poverty’s lack of action, yet the Government continues to claim the committee is making a difference.”

“That’s just rubbish. Both the White Paper on Vulnerable Children and Paula Bennett’s welfare reforms have been heavily criticised for either ignoring poverty or for making it worse.”

I’d give their efforts one word: Wrong.  We need a better response to this crisis of Child Poverty.

Wrong:

Bill English trying to spin the high exchange rate as good for workers, as it keeps the price of flat screen TVs down.  He points out the rising dollar meant there was some protection for workers’ living standards for the fact that under National our wages have barely risen.

Quite Rightly David Parker dismisses his rhetoric as:

“nonsense”.

“What they [manufacturers] want is an exchange rate which enables them to compete internationally so they can afford to pay wages,” he said.

“The idea that an artificially high exchange rate is good for New Zealand workers because it holds down the price of flat screen TVs is a nonsense if they can’t earn a decent wage.”

I’m sure most workers would prefer a lower exchange rate, higher wages and secure jobs because their companies can compete internationally.

Wrong:

Murray McCully refusing to meet West Papuan Benny Wenda, and the Government prompting the new Speaker to bar him talking to Parliament.

Just because we have $1 Billion in trade with Indonesia doesn’t mean we should suppress the stories of 50 years of oppression of those living in West Papua.

50 comments on “Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.”

  1. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 1

    Good points Ben. Now how to stop the NACTiban from ruining our country.

  2. vto 2

    why bother going to wellington if you’re not going to charge head first at these? there is no other reason to go

    • Rosie 2.1

      “Why bother going to Wellington if you’re not going to charge head first at these? There is no other reason to go.”

      I’m assuming you mean parliament when you say Wellington, and not Wellington as a city and region.
      I know the word Wellington has always been used as a reference to parliament and governance in general but its annoying. It tars the residents with the same venom that is reserved for central govt. Example On 3 news the other night: “Dargaville farmers are fed up with the lack of concern from Wellington” (or words to that effect) WTF. Wellington as a city is not an entity that can be referred to as being capable of providing concern, that would be central govt they are talking about. Why should the city take on the persona of parliament?

    • Polish Pride 2.2

      To collect your pay packet…

  3. xtasy 3

    Three points I make, Ben:

    1. Re the report by the Salvation Army and what Jacinda had to say in her speech on the Prime Minister’s Statement, it is right that this government does not seem to give too much of a damn about the poverty and suffering of children.

    But Jacinda’s speech was also short of any information on what Labour would offer to solve these poverty and poor employment issues that this government has dumped on society. She is going on about “welfare must first be about work”. Can you tell this to young kids suffering lack of food, clothing, freezing in uninsulated homes in winter, suffering from dampness and the likes?

    2. Bill English does of course come from his ideological corner to justify the inaction on currency AND other issues that make the NZ economy stall and not go anywhere near a constructive direction. His talk about wages and salaries being dropped if the dollar was lower, and us having to appreciate “cheap” imports of TVs and gadgets (which are not really that “cheap” at all on international comparison), and it all being in good hands, is ridiculously blinkered.

    3. Murray McCulley is a guy who is so out of touch with international developments, if he ever heard of the Arab Spring or Velvet Revolution, the fall of the Berlin Wall and Iron Curtain, he may have been learning something. He continues with his little, selective micro management of his foreign affairs and trade staff, nobody wants to work for him now.

    To come and insult a West Papua representative, clearly for reasons of keeping on good trading and other terms with Indonesia, is just typical of this government. I remember the frowning on Russel Norman’s flag protest about Tibet, when a high level Chinese delegation came here. It may have looked silly, but hey, the NZ government showed how silly and corrupt it is, when it comes to human rights and fair trade.

    So we are back with the known issues.

    This government does not deliver, does not show integrity and decency, has a bizarre interpretation of human rights and democracy, aligns itself rather with dictatorships for opportune trade deals, and it betrays anything that NZ once stood for.

    Yet I am still waiting to see the clear signals from Labour as leading opposition party, to present us a convincing alternative, and that includes also social fairness and so in social welfare. I sadly see nothing buty ambiguity, non-committing language, a let down even, in regards to those too sick and disabled to work.

    I really yearn for something better, dear Ben, so let us hope that the Labour caucus members will finally wake up and come to the party, re-discovering what the party they once joined, really is meant to stand for!

    • Ben Clark 3.1

      Labour’s first priority for Welfare has always been jobs (unlike this sorry government). The more able workers we can get into jobs, the more they can afford and the more the country can afford.

      That doesn’t mean forcing people into inappropriate jobs, and it doesn’t mean forcing the ill to work. It can mean finding the appropriate jobs for the disabled to give them the greater independence that they desire.

      And it doesn’t mean that we don’t look after those out of work, or blame them for the lack of jobs / their inability to work.

      It can be hard to express concrete policies before they are formulated. Although we may have liked the idea of extending working for families to the unemployed, from when I was a candidate last election it really didn’t sell well on the doorstep or the hustings. The terms jarred, and people weren’t convinced (it certainly lost us votes). So we need to find a way that looks after the poor – particularly those with children – as well or better, but that the voting public sees as fair.

      I favour targeted universal benefits such as child benefits. Everyone gets something so no-one misses out (targeted benefits often miss the poor who need them as they don’t know to apply and also don’t get buy-in from the rich who don’t get them and feel left out of society); but those who need more, get more. Maybe we can build something around that.

      • bad12 3.1.1

        So, who does the calculation over the amount of votes that would have been/were lost over the issue of extending Working for Families to beneficiary dependent children,

        I am not even going to advance the discussion here about which children in our society needed Working for Families the most,(i assume there is only one logical answer),

        Who tho does the calculation about the number of votes Labour ‘lost’ through denying Working for Families to benefit dependent children,

        I can assure you that Labour at the point of Helen Clark telling us all that not including benefit dependent children in Working for Families was ”to encourage them to get a job” lost Labour my vote and i have nothing to gain financially from having those children included,

        The fact that you discuss the inclusion of benefit dependent children in the Working for Families scheme as one of votes lost says that i made the right decision to leave a party that would put a few votes ahead of the well-being of a large number of Kiwi children…

      • xtasy 3.1.2

        “That doesn’t mean forcing people into inappropriate jobs, and it doesn’t mean forcing the ill to work. It can mean finding the appropriate jobs for the disabled to give them the greater independence that they desire.” And –

        “It can be hard to express concrete policies before they are formulated.”

        Thanks for your reply Ben.

        I am still confused, and from your reply I get the impression that you basically want welfare reforms similar to the ones the Nats have served us up by way of the Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill, but with the difference of not formulating these too harshly and not with the types and levels of draconian sanctions in place.

        Indeed I get the impression that Labour’s leadership and caucus members, possibly even wider circles in the membership, share the views of the controversial former Chief Medical Officer of the Department for Work and Pensions in the UK, Professor and now “Sir” Mansel Aylward, who believes in a rather firm interpretation of the so-called “bio psycho social model” for assessing sick and disabled for work capacity. His reasoning is, that the applied work tests, based on his implemented policies, do “assist” sick and disabled into “suitable” work. Yet in the UK that “firm” approach did from early 2011 to Sept. 2011 cost the lives of over 1100 people there.

        http://blacktrianglecampaign.org/2012/05/31/a-tale-of-two-models-disabled-people-vs-unum-atos-government-and-disability-charities-by-debbie-jolly-dpac/

        http://blacktrianglecampaign.org/2012/10/31/government-use-might-of-american-insurance-giant-to-destroy-uk-safety-net-by-mo-stewart-update/

        As the presently still employed Principal Health Advisor for MSD and WINZ, Dr David Bratt was also hired and employed under a then “new” welfare focus under the last Labour led government, and as he appears to have enjoyed to full trust of the then government, while going on about the same approach ad Professor Aylward, and in presentations to GPs even compares benefit dependent people to drug dependent people, I am somewhat concerned and horrified about what Labour may stand for in this whole welfare matter.

        http://www.gpcme.co.nz/pdf/GP%20CME/Friday/C1%201515%20Bratt-Hawker.pdf

        http://www.gpcme.co.nz/pdf/2012/Fri_DaVinci_1400_Bratt_Medical%20Certificates%20are%20Clinical%20Instruments%20too%20-%20June%202012.pdf
        (see pages 3, 16 and 33 re comparison to “drug dependence”)

        Those 2 are just some of Dr Bratts rather one sided, selective info using and bizarre presentations to GPs and other organisations. He does not come across as being particularly “sympathetic” and wanting to “assist” people into suitable work, I am afraid.

        So having put such a man in such a job, and many Labour MPs coming here, or having their weekly e-newsletter presented on TS, and then not answering to questions I raised about all this, that does not build any trust in Labour’s welfare policies at all, I am afraid.

        Feel free to express your views on these bits of information found under the above links.

        I understand that the largely ignorant, media brainwashed, envious and harsh public would not have warmed for extending WWF to beneficiaries, but why not address the public with true figures and not let the one-sided, misinforming media get away with what they are doing? Or is it perhaps “convenient” for the Labour leadership to have the public think as they do, at least in some areas of policy?

        • xtasy 3.1.2.1

          Correction: In my last chapter in my comment I did in error use the abbreviation WWF for ‘Working for Families’. It was meant to be WFF of course.

        • xtasy 3.1.2.2

          Paula Bennett and Cabinet did already in 2010 announce extremely firm, yes harsh, new rules and requirements for sick and disabled beneficiaries, which can be read in the following document:

          http://www.msd.govt.nz/documents/about-msd-and-our-work/newsroom/media-releases/news/2010/paper-c-tightening-access-and-active-assessment.pdf

          The document in question is titled:
          PAPER C – FUTURE FOCUS: TIGHTENING ACCESS AND ACTIVE ASSESSMENT

          “A relentless focus on work” was the mantra, and still seems to be, and now MSD and WINZ look at what people “can do” rather than “what they cannot do”.

          It is one in a serious of policy documents that were prepared, produced and that led to new, stringent welfare policies, which led to many former invalid’s beneficiaries, or new applicants for that benefit, being put through tight assessments, often by WINZ commissioned and MSD selected “designated doctors” that were trained since 2008 by Dr David Bratt and Dr David Rankin, both known for their personal strong, one-sided views in regards to “work capacity” and the “benefits of work”.

          Many were thrown off the IB and put onto the Sickness Benefit. And also have many sickness beneficiaries been re-assessed “rigorously”, and then work tested, to compete with the already too many fit and healthy for the few jobs that exist out there.

          It raises extremely serious questions how the “training” of those doctors by MSD staff does meet the legal requirements for “independence” of “designated doctors” under natural justice.

          So I am still waiting for Ben Clark’s position on the above and this.

          As I can remember, there was some verbal opposition from Labour to the way ‘Future Focus’ was being implemented by the National led government, but it was rather sporadic and of brief occurence, when coming from various Labour MPs.

          Now, I really would like an update on where Labour stands on welfare policies, in view of all these developments.

  4. swan 4

    Re 2. I dont get it. A lower exchange rate only helps insofar as it lowers real wages for NZers. But then people are at the same time calling for higher wages which would nullify this. Whats it to be then – lower wages and more employment or higher wages and less employment?

    • felixviper 4.1

      “A lower exchange rate only helps insofar as it lowers real wages for NZers”

      Second time you’ve trooled that line in less than a day. Guess no-one bit, eh?

      It’s almost as if everyone has had these exact discussions many times before, seen through all your cultish dogma, and and aren’t the slightest bit impressed with your blinkered bullshit.

      • BLiP 4.1.1

        .

        When do the private schools go back?

      • swan 4.1.2

        “It’s almost as if everyone has had these exact discussions many times before, seen through all your cultish dogma, and and aren’t the slightest bit impressed with your blinkered bullshit.”

        Or, no one has got a simple answer to this problem. One of the two.

        • Bunji 4.1.2.1

          1. There are costs other than wages that will also reduce with the dollar, improving our competitiveness.
          2. A lot of the things we buy are not from overseas, so wages don’t need to rise as much as the dollar lowers for workers to be in a better position – as well as exporters.

        • Polish Pride 4.1.2.2

          Felix – unfortunately in my humble opinion Swan is probably right insofar as many times valid questions (to the person asking at least) are posted with genuine intentions behind them and wanting answers but because they don’t fit nicely (or even worse, potentially dispell comletely….?) with solution being discussed, they are just ignored and no one responds.
          Again in my humble opinion (and this one has a wealth of experience behind it) If you are really serious about solving a problem, you need to consider all the potential variables and outcomes otherwise not only will you not solve the problem you intended to, you might just create several new ones. Then again you might just get lucky and solve the one you wanted to. But when your playing with something that affects people on mass you should consider all the potential and logical outcomes. Then and only then will you be in a position to have a robust and workable solution.

          • Colonial Viper 4.1.2.2.1

            nah the high dollar has been squeezing high paid jobs out of this country for years and years, replacing them with shitty low paid service ones.

            The changes we need to make are 10 years overdue, they have been thought through for years and years, the USA and China have been depressing their own currencies for at least that long, how much longer do you want to delay joining the club of rational economic actors?

            • Polish Pride 4.1.2.2.1.1

              I agree with you but once you have done it then what? We live in a global economy filled with consolidation, automation, and offshoring of resources and these are constant pressures on ‘employment’. So lets say we do what is being discussed and lets say the unemployment rate drops to 5%. With these constant pressures in a Capitalist system where businesses always need to constantly look for competitive advantages it is not going to stay that way for long. I’m sure I don’t need to tell anyone on here that wages are generally the largest expense of any business. Its all well and good to say that businesses need to focus on more than just the bottom line (and they do) but in the current system the bottom line will ALWAYS be in focus.

              • Colonial Viper

                I agree with you but once you have done it then what?

                One step at a time.

                With these constant pressures in a Capitalist system where businesses always need to constantly look for competitive advantages it is not going to stay that way for long.

                You draw a firm line around labour and pay standards and tell business to look for their competitive advantages elsewhere other than deflating Kiwi living standards.

                • Polish Pride

                  See now although what your proposing (drawing a firm line around labour and pay standards) works in theory (and potentially practice) … it will still be subject to pressure from businesses being able to do it cheaper overseas or via automation.
                  It would work well if you want to focus on small to medium size businesses and I suspect that you do. These small to medium size businesses are not likely to have the capital required to upsticks and move overseas where labour and subsequently the overall cost of manufacture is cheaper. Automation however is another matter and will still be putting workers out of jobs. It is important not to think of this in isolated incidences though because once a role can be made redundant through automation, all roles of that type have the potential to be made redundant. The problem is that the people in those roles under the current system then need to find another job in a world/country where roles are continuously being automated. There are solutions – people working less/job sharing, embracing automation and having the goal of society and the system to make people redundant and probably others too. But these are discussions about the type of country we want to live in in the future. Maybe not for us. Maybe this is a discussion about the world we want to leave our children or grandchildren. The problem is politicians have no driver to even bother having this discussion with New Zealand and so we just drift endlessly from left to right, from one crisis/problem to the next.

                  • McFlock

                    That is a point, but then the flipside is that we end up rehashing the “minimum wage vs unemployment” debate incessantly, just because of some year-8-level application of a slide rule that assumes the supply and demand curve is a completely isolated system. That’s not the theoretical king-hit tories seem to think it is, not least of which because it’s not been replicated in the real world.

                    Basically, “questions” like Swan’s involve more than enough knowledge to use the jargon and identify the juxtaposition, but not enough to realise it’s drivel – which requires either dogmatic blinkering or an amazing ability to miss the obvious. It’s just a hip-pocket line for folk who think they have an awesome counter-argument, like athiests who go up to street preachers and ask “can God make something too heavy for him to lift?”.

                    I’m sure there’s a “stupid tory arguments” website that can be used as a shorthand link as a response, rather than just calling them the idiot, privileged swine they are, but I’ve never been bothered to look for it.

                    • swan

                      Seriously, McFlock why dont you want to look at the reality? In NZ we currently have youth unemployment off the scale relative to general unemployment. It is very well correlated with the abolition of youth rates. Do you want to run the risk of exposing ever more people to unemployment in the pursuit of a minimum wage.

                      I would love to live in a country where everyone got a decent life. My opinion is the best way to achieve that is via education, and the second best way is via a universal basic income.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      BULLSHIT swan

                      Go your way and you’ll have NZers working for $10/hr. But that’s still FOUR TIMES higher than Indian and Chinese workers.

                      So we’ll still have skyrocketing unemployment and poor export performance because most NZ businesses refuse to pour money into capital equipment and technology.

                      Note the NZ dairy industry. Millions of dollars of new plant and equipment going in every year, millions of dollars in research, well paid, unionised staff in every fucking factory.

                      Maybe you could learn a thing or two about what already works in NZ instead of trying to pawn off your fellow citizens at discount rates?

                    • McFlock

                      In NZ we currently have youth unemployment off the scale relative to general unemployment. It is very well correlated with the abolition of youth rates. Do you want to run the risk of exposing ever more people to unemployment in the pursuit of a minimum wage.

                      Sigh.

                      Abolition or introduction?

                      Eric Crampton was here a while back spouting the same bollocks. Google it. I think there was a treasury report or somesuch that basically assumed that youth unemployment would remain in a constant level, or increase at the same ratio, past the introduction of youth rates. Which assumed that the GFC would affect everyone equally – skilled unemployed and unskilled with no work record.

                      What’s the youth minimum wage compared to adult MW now, and what’s the youth unemployment rate compared to adult? Take your time…

                    • swan

                      Colonial Viper, you do realise that on the whole we have far higher productivity than China and India right? And this IS reflected in wages?

                      A universal basic income would allow us not to need to even have this conversation. We could set a UBI at something everyone agreed was acceptable (and it could vary depending on family size), and then there is no need for a minimum wage to be set above prevailing market conditions. Job done. No risk of ending up with people living on Chinese wages.

                    • swan

                      McFlock,

                      I have seen that work. It uses a data series going back through previous major recessions. And there is a major break in the trends right after the abolition of youth rates.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Colonial Viper, you do realise that on the whole we have far higher productivity than China and India right? And this IS reflected in wages?

                      Misleading statement. You’re averaging in half a billion rural peasants who live on one or two dollars a day to get your China position.

                    • swan

                      Point being? Market rates for unskilled labour will be based on the marginal product of the labour.

                      But we can agree that a UBI would be the best solution??

                    • McFlock

                      I seem to recall the bulk of the analysis was post-2000.

                      But the point was that, crunching the numbers for “attributed job loss”, it assumed that youth unemployment would have been constant (either absolutely or as a relative measure, can’t remember offhand – distinction irrelevant, anyway, as they’re both absurd) as we entered the GFC.

                      Bunk. Like most dogmatic, pseudo-scientific economic “analysis”. Supply-Demand slide rules cannot be applied to a complex system.

        • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 4.1.2.3

          Your name provides a picture ‘swan’. Gliding across a pool in isolated splendour with your head in the air looking away from the plebs. That’s why you will never get answers to your questions and reach understanding. Because you don’t want to see or mix with either the ducks or the seagulls. We’ll keep squabbling over the crumbs and you can survey us disdainfully from afar.

          • Polish Pride 4.1.2.3.1

            “Your name provides a picture ‘swan’. Gliding across a pool in isolated splendour with your head in the air looking away from the plebs. That’s why you will never get answers to your questions and reach understanding. Because you don’t want to see or mix with either the ducks or the seagulls. We’ll keep squabbling over the crumbs and you can survey us disdainfully from afar.”

            And this is why you lose so many opportunities to explain why a policy or course of action from the left would work and give us a far better place to live than the status quo. At the same time there will be a number of people not commenting but reading this blog that will see comments like yours and form an ‘opinion’ as a result.
            I very rarely attack anyone and you are probably unlucky in the fact that I have seen this type of post far too many times and you are the one that I decided to reply too. Your comment does absolutely nothing but feed your ego and may serve to move people like Swan decide that there is no point in posting here.

            If you just want this site to be a bunch of back slapping lefties that have no understanding of how those more to the centre or the right (you know those pesky people that also have a vote. A vote that at many elections will help to your preferred party in the opposition seats) think and and why, and you don’t actually want the opportunity to change their mind or better yet vote based on policy not just because they like the ‘look’ of leader on the right more in this current system of populist personality politics…. Then just continue with dumbarse comments like that one directed at other posters.

            If I am not mistaken National are in power right now making a real mess of this country and it is you and those of the left squabbling over the crumbs looking disdainfully from afar. Maybe, just maybe you should think about whether you want it to remain that way… and if not what you could do to change it instead.

            But by all means keep it up. You just get me closer to my dream of the whole ineffective system collapsing in on itself and people waking up to the fact that we don’t need politicians we just need a well considered constitution and a direct democracy.

            • McFlock 4.1.2.3.1.1

              The probability that any time spent in genuine discussion with Swan will be at all productive is approaching zero. I’m all for robust debate, even painfully drawn out arguments with little chance of resolution, but you can’t argue logic against dogmatic faith.

              • Polish Pride

                I post on here from time to time (semi regularly? work permitting) and I have no clue who you guys and girls consider to have dogmatic faith and therefore feel there is no point in engaging.
                There are a large number of people who read the site and the comments but probably never post, They may have an interest in politics, or a just a particular issue they are interested in. They may have some other reason for being here altogether.
                The point is if I post here and I don’t know who fall into the ‘ not worth engaging category’ then chances are they won’t either. Like me all they will see is a guy asking what appears to be a perfectly valid question and getting ignored or worse made fun of or worse still attacked personally.
                What impression are you leaving them with those who support the politics of the left.
                We live in New Zealand and when I grew up the two topics you don’t talk about if you want to remain friends with people is politics and religion. This blog and others like it give people that opportunity – do not underestimate the potential power to both turn voters on or off based on what they read here.

                Maybe I am being too precious, maybe I’m not. but if you attack someone you risk looking like the idiot to outsiders not them. If instead you continuously engage them with well reasoned (evidence based arguments) and they just stick with dogmatic faith in the face of what you present. Then it is they who will appear as the idiot…

                • felixviper

                  Maybe if you spent more time engaging with commenters here you’d figure out who was worth talking to for yourself. Hint: it’s not going to be the same for everyone.

                  Alternately you could just stand on the sideline pissing and moaning about how others choose to engage according to their needs and means.

                  Or you could start a site of your own and encourage whatever style of commenting you like.

                  • NoseViper (The Nose knows)

                    Polish Pride

                    Maybe I am being too precious, maybe I’m not. but if you attack someone you risk looking like the idiot to outsiders not them. If instead you continuously engage them with well reasoned (evidence based arguments) and they just stick with dogmatic faith in the face of what you present. Then it is they who will appear as the idiot…

                    My observation of many people with opinions about politics is described by an old saying “Those convinced against their will, Are of the same opinion still.”
                    So endless discussions with people whose intellectual equipment is too refined to try to stretch it wrap it around a problem so as to understand it better from all angles, is just a waste of good people’s time.

                    There is much to discuss and not enough time for wasting on those who enjoy filling in their spare hours being acrimonious, critical and judgmental without wanting to find some positive and human-oriented workable solution. Batting at each other’s heads, saying ‘my facts are better than yours’ so someone can emerge triumphant from the ‘discussion’ is merely a type of useless competition. Better and more likely to have a healthy outcome, to put in the time playing petanque.

  5. Rosie 5

    Sometimes all one can do to bear these times is to grit ones teeth, but sometimes that just doesn’t work and some venting of frustration must occur. The issues you cite, the Sallies annual report, Bill English being an arse, Benny Wenda’s appalling treatment and and Richard Tossers fucktard outburst in the hate mongering investigate magazine all culminated to bring me to tears the other day. It was admittedly during a weak point in my general life experience at the moment but these events really tipped me over. These events are symptomatic of our leadeships’ ideology so are not isolated. All combined however it makes me so deeply ashamed of what we have become. Transitioning back into decent society in terms of political leadership won’t be easy.

    • vto 5.1

      I am sorry to hear that Rosie. And I absolutely understand what you are saying and see and notice it myself. Various of my posts lately (usually ignored as typical ranting and blah de blah) rest on that same base discomfort and the fractures and faultlines running through our society. These fractures expose themselves in various forms, as you say.

      I also agree that leadership is one of the main ways of improving and healing these faultlines. However, leadership in this arena is simply non-existent. I made a suggestion to Hone (hee hee, not that he may read it or even anyone else, but thats another story) over on OpenMike that, effectively, he take a leadership role in one of those fractured zones and move to try and heal.

      Kia kaha

      • Rosie 5.1.1

        Thank you vto for your words. You either hadn’t had an opportunity to read my response to you at #2 or perhaps you are being gracious.

        Yes, I have yes read your posts of late and wouldn’t dismiss them as rants. To my mind reaction to changing societal behaviour is just as valid as discussing theories and policies. Indeed in our current political climate, policy is one thing that is driving social change for the worse. A phenomenom that I am observing but in no way can I validate or quantify is that folks (friends, family, neighbourhood, business and organisational intereactions etc) seem to have given up on giving a fuck. Is this the effect of a complicit media? Their own downwardly mobile life experience? Their disconnection from democracy and an ignorance of our political reality? To quote Key, dunno. Don’t know if I’m imagining it or not, or projecting my own dissatisfaction.

        Have you written to Hone Harawira himself? I really look forward to Mana having a visible and active role in repairing our fractured society in the next parliament. I really hope they pick up some extra seats in 2014.

        sentiments back at ya.

    • Polish Pride 5.2

      Rosie thoughts are power. If you keep thinking this is wrong that is bad then these are the situations that will continuously be presented to you in life.
      The world is changing for the better it can just be hard to see it if your not looking in the right places.
      If you try to focus on the positives (and at times they might seem limited in number) and the world that you want to live in, you will start to see the positive changes more and more. You won’t even need to look for the right places. They will present themselves to you.

      “The man who thinks he can and the man who thinks he can’t are both right. Which one are you?”
      Henry Ford

      There is more power hidden in this statement than most people realise.

      • Rosie 5.2.1

        Hi Polish Pride thanks for your thoughts. While it may appear from my statement above that I am mired in a swamp of despair, there are other events I view that are remarkable for their success, and these things bring peace to my mind. I’ll give an example in minute.

        We can’t deny the reality of life in NZ, life in the world today. I’m pretty sure that civilisation has being saying since time began “What is the world coming to?!”. We’ve fought wars for freedom against repression and oppression for millenia. Awhile ago I watched a doco about the peasants revolt of 1314 in England. It seemed exactly the same themes of power, domination and oppression where at play that are now. I couldn’t see a difference. However, past battles were local,(even though the magnitude was great for some given the population) now we are global and we have the ability to destroy at a global level, eg, climate change as an effect of unchecked and unwise production. It is serious, and it can be depressing, and can’t be denied. We just can’t think our way out of it.

        Yes, I do understand the concept you are talking about. The power of thought. I view it more from a cognitve behavioural aspect than anything psuedo spiritual. My education (albeit a cut short and uncompleted one due to funds) has been in psychology and I spent a semester studying cognitive behavioural psych. I get that your self talk can bring to you to an unwanted and negative place however this has to balanced with a clear and non dissonant grasp on the reality of the world, the community you live in.
        I think what grates about the “thought is power” statement is that it is often said along side such throw away, empty and unhelpful lines lines such as “you are the master of your own destiny”, “it must be meant to be”, “you create your own karma”.
        Tell this to someone who has student debt, received a degree, had a great job, maybe in a govt dept, doing good work, saving for a house etc and then suddenly finds themselves redundant, goes through all their savings, can’t find another job or at best has to take a demeaning one and finds they are back where they started when they left home and went flatting. Tell it to the worker who has worked in the same factory all his/her life in the same small town and now the factory has closed down. There is no where else to go to work and they have ten years to go before retirement. I don’t think reminding them that thought is power will be particularly helpful if they then go on to develop depression and or anxiety.

        And finally PP. Yes good things do happen. We all have our own examples. Mine is that once a week I go in to do volunteer work for a not for profit organisation. Like most not for profits, their work and their successes fly under the radar. Often the recipients of their work are the only ones to know. Once a week I have the happy experience of working with truley amazing people that make amazing things happen for households in need.

        So, while we can do the best for ourselves and think in a solution focused and positive way, it doesn’t always work. There are forces beyond our control and they are the ones I had a wee outburst about. It may look a bit uncool but its totally valid. Perhaps if we had more collective expression of frustration we might be able to achive something positive.

    • muzza 5.3

      Hi Rosie, sorry to hear about your low point, and is completely understandable, that the barrage of depressed events happening, curtesey of the, *right honourables* (phooey), tipped you over.

      These people are not leaders, they are the currupted souls who have been bent over, sometimes willingly, sometimes not, either way, our parliament would be about 99.9% currupted!

      Like you, I am ashamed of what has become of NZ, because those running the place, are the direct reflection of the experiment which is NZ inc, and those who see themselves in the current govt.

      We have what *we* deserve running this place, which is appauling to those who value humanity, the environment, and appreciate the simple things in life which can put a smile on someone else’s face, as well as our own, so never let someone else take that from you, because that is what its about, taking from you (us).

      Be strong Rosie, and who knows, perhaps one day, instead of people blowing off events with such terms as. *conspircacy theory* etc, they might be faced with having to accept, that things in this country are so bad, for reasons that are so distateful/dishonest/abhorrant, that they are forced out of the collective slumber to take back, what is rightfully ours!

      The key component is, not to let it take away your energy, and ensure that you are finding joy, for others, and yourself, the power of this is exponential.

      Be well Rosie

  6. Murray Olsen 6

    What Polish Pride has written here makes a lot of sense to me.
    Many more people read this blog than ever comment or ask questions on it. A newish reader seeing someone put down does not know any of the history and can quickly form the opinion that the Standardistas are part of some exclusive club.
    There are obvious trolls such as King Kong, who deserve nothing but contempt. On the other hand, there are people who ask questions which may or may not be trolling. Lining up to be dismissive of them can turn people off very quickly.

    • felixviper 6.1

      “There are obvious trolls such as King Kong, who deserve nothing but contempt.”

      Obvious to you, maybe. But what about to someone reading the site for the first time?

      Or to someone who has no idea what trooling is?

      Or someone with no critical abilities?

      If someone employs a slightly more sophisticated form of questioning than KK, and uses a more polite turn of phrase, and changes their alias now and then so it doesn’t look like they’re ignoring all the answers they’ve already received, do I have to treat them as if they’re acting in good faith?

      Why do you get to be contemptuous of someone who you recognise as taking the piss but I don’t?

    • RedLogix 6.2

      I’m inclined to agree with Murray. It takes time to get comfortable with the ecosystem of a blog, to pick up on the undertones, the dominant values, language and unwritten rules of the place.

      Even simple things that are obvious to the residents, like whose a moderator, an author, and whose been around for five years or five minutes, are simply not obvious to a new arrival. Hell they most likely have yet to be pointed to the About or Policy pages.

      Yes there is a pretty strong ‘in group’ here. I’d advocate that we act with more self-awareness and generosity towards new commenters … regardless of where you think they are coming from.

      If it turns out they really are dickheads or trolls then eventually moderation will catch up with them.

      • Rogue Trooper 6.2.1

        :) (and you are humourous plenty of times amidst that comprehensive data-base of knowledge)

  7. Murray Olsen 7

    PS Do everyone’s comments await moderation, or am I guilty of something?

    [RL: Guilty of hoping some poor mod will release him from purgatory at 3am...]

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    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
  • Bartlett case means Govt must act on equal pay
    The Court of Appeal victory for Lower Hutt caregiver, Kristine Bartlett demonstrates that both the Government and employers have been ignoring and not fully implementing equal pay law, the Green Party said today.The Court of Appeal today upheld earlier rulings...
    Greens | 27-10
  • Rotorua shift for Maori TV a bizarre move
    The bizarre idea to move Maori TV to Rotorua is either poor planning or possible political interference that adds to the perception of a service in crisis, says Labour MP for Tamaki Makaurau Peeni Henare. “Moving Maori TV to Rotorua...
    Labour | 27-10
  • Second rate deal a no go – Goff
    A second rate deal on dairy in the TPP would totally contradict the agreed purpose of the Pacific trade agreement, Labour’s Trade spokesperson, Phil Goff says. “Both the origin of the trade negotiations and leaders’ statements on its objectives emphasise...
    Labour | 27-10
  • Legal victory a boost for all working women
    Today’s legal victory for equal pay is a much-needed boost for working women at a time when the Government is pushing through reforms which will make it harder for them to get pay rises, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney...
    Labour | 27-10
  • National’s failed commodities export strategy exposed
    National's strategy to rely on commodities such as milk powder and logs has been exposed in the September trade figures released today, the Green Party said."National's strategy to hang all economic hope on exporting ever-increasing volumes of milk powder and...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Caution needed on calls to arm police
    There is no justification for routinely arming our police and doing so would change forever the way officers interact with their communities, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “As one of the few organisations distinguished by its unarmed status,...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Govt strains to get tea break law through
    The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“National desperately...
    Labour | 23-10
  • How low can you go? Mining the depths
    The company says there will be economic benefits, which the EEZ Act says the EPA must consider, but even these benefits are in doubt. The royalties while not set will be tiny, the profits will flow offshore, and whatever phosphate...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Government loses the affordable housing race
    Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks he can deliver affordable housing to Cantabrians on his current figures, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Minister’s announcement that the Government will build 237 new homes, most of which will...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Labour’s thoughts with Canadians
    Labour has offered its sympathies to the family and friends of the Canadian soldier who died in what appears to be a premeditated and unprovoked attack while standing at guard at the Ottawa National War Memorial. “Our thoughts are also...
    Labour | 23-10
  • What next for TVNZ? Outsourcing the news?
    Television New Zealand’s decision to outsource Māori and Pacific programming is a real blow to the notion that our state broadcaster is a public broadcaster, says Labour. “CEO Kevin Kenrick has said today that TVNZ has ‘a very long and...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Green Party expresses sympathy for Canadian shooting victims
    The Green Party expressed its solidarity with Canadians and the Canadian Parliament today, offering its sympathy for family and friends of the soldier killed in the attack. "Our thoughts are with all those caught up in the shooting in Canada...
    Greens | 22-10
  • 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
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • 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
  • Labour leadership candidates in Invercargill
    The four candidates for Labour Leader – Andrew Little, Nanaia Mahuta, David Parker and Grant Robertson - will be in Invercargill on Friday evening for a Husting meeting with members, as part of fourteen Husting Meetings being held nationwide as...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Public now needs to have its say over new tolls
    “I welcome the likes of new tolls and fuel taxes going out for public consultation after these matters have been talked about for 20 years. However the timing is not ideal as it comes on top of the likes of...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis to fight back against TPPA ‘corporate trap’
    New Zealanders in at least sixteen different locations around the country are organising for an International Day of Action against the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) on 8 November, co-ordinated by It's Our Future NZ. This is part of an international...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes NZ First MP’s Resignation
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming NZ First MP, Clayton Mitchell’s resignation from the Tauranga City Council, despite Party Leader Winston Peters' public comments in July that Mr Mitchell would do both jobs if elected to Parliament. The Union's...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Stopping unnecessary roading projects solution to transport
    Today Auckland Council released the Funding Auckland’s Transport Future report which claims Aucklanders need to choose higher rates, petrol taxes or tolls to pay for future transport projects, when the real issue is the prioritisation of unnecessary...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Fixing Auckland’s transport
    Today marks a critical step in the most important funding debate Auckland has ever had: whether or not Aucklanders are willing to pay for the transport system this city desperately needs to keep it moving, says Mayor Len Brown....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • The New Zealand Gazette Moves into the Digital Age
    On Monday 20 October, the New Zealand Gazette was published completely online bringing to a close 173 years as a purely printed publication. First published in 1841 as the official government newspaper, the Gazette website gazette.govt.nz , replaces...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • International report shows NZ struggling with child poverty
    A report by UNICEF International shows that child poverty rates in New Zealand have scarcely changed since 2008 – this stands in contrast to a number of other countries that managed to significantly reduce child poverty in this time, including...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Labour leadership candidates in Dunedin
    The four candidates for Labour Leader – Andrew Little, Nanaia Mahuta, David Parker and Grant Robertson - will be in Dunedin on Thursday evening for a Husting meeting with members, as part of fourteen Husting Meetings being held nationwide as...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • UNICEF Report a Waste of Paper
    In response to the hysteria coming from the far left, Josh Forman of slightlyleftofcentre.co.nz writes the following:...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Press Council opens doors to digital media
    The New Zealand Press Council, the body which handles complaints against newspapers and magazines and their websites, is offering associate membership status to news and commentary-oriented digital media including bloggers....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Tolls Should Be for New Roads, Not Old Ones
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming Auckland Council for wanting to introduce a motorist tax under the guise of ‘tolls’. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Media freedom in West Papua: Protest at Indonesian embassy
    Today, Wednesday 29 October, there will be a peaceful protest at the Indonesian Embassy in Wellington to call on new Indonesian President Joko Widodo to honour his election promise to ensure greater media freedom in West Papua....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Lack of leadership blamed for decline in Gender Equity
    BPW NZ challenges NZ’s lack of leadership with the decline in Gender Equity Ranking...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Richard Falk visit to NZ
    Professor Richard Falk, who recently completed a six-year term as United Nations Special Rapporteur on Palestinian human rights, will deliver a public lecture in Dunedin on Monday 10 November....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Apprehension for meat workers as employment law bill passes
    The passing of the Employment Relations Amendment Bill today will send a wave of apprehension through the workers in the NZ meat industry says the Meat Workers Union....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • “Yes to Children, No to Poverty” Says Commissioner
    Children’s Commissioner, Dr Russell Wills will describe impacts of poverty on children, with a focus on local solutions at the Tū Kaha biennial conference for Māori health for the central region DHBs at the Hawke’s Bay Racing Centre in Hastings...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • UNICEF report card highlights need for action
    Unicef’s child poverty report released today shows that New Zealand needs to be more proactive in pursuing policies to protect our most vulnerable members of society....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Children of the Recession: NZ’s shame
    Children of the Recession : NZ’s shame Media release Wednesday 29 October 2014 “It is to New Zealand’s deepest shame that the latest Unicef report on children living in poverty ranks us 16th out of 41 developed countries. “Every day...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • UNICEF cautions NZ child poverty rates are “stagnating”
    An international report by UNICEF has found that child poverty rates in New Zealand have barely changed since 2008, despite similar sized countries significantly reducing child poverty during the recent recession....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • TPP Too Important for Compromised Finish
    The New Zealand dairy industry is urging Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) partners not to compromise on the quality of the deal to get it done quickly....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Labour leadership candidates in Nelson
    Labour leadership candidates in Nelson The four candidates for Labour Leader – Andrew Little, Nanaia Mahuta, David Parker and Grant Robertson - will be in Nelson on Tuesday evening for a Husting meeting with members, as part of fourteen Husting...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • History is made. Equal pay not just legal but possible!
    The New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) congratulates Kristine Bartlett and the Service and Food Workers Union: Ngā Ringa Tota on their historic win. Today the Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal from Kristine’s employer; opening the way for...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
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