ACT’s fifth Candidate?

Written By: - Date published: 1:00 pm, September 18th, 2008 - 49 comments
Categories: act, election funding, rumour - Tags: , ,

The word around the traps is that ACT will be announcing the name of its mystery 5th list candidate at its Law and Order policy launch this weekend and it’s rumoured that the candidate will be David Garrett.

Garrett is a Barrister and is also a legal advisor to the Sensible Sentencing Trust who drafted their draconian ‘Three Strikes’ law.

One of the closest supporters of the Sensible Sentencing Trust is the Asian Anti-Crime Group. The AAG is the same organisation that, according to documents released by the EPMU, met with Rodney Hide to push its social and economic agenda and cut a deal to mobilise the Asian vote for ACT in exchange for places on the ACT list.

As has been previously noted here the Sensible Sentencing Trust has also refused to register under the Charities Act or as a third party under the EFA so there is no public record of its financial or party political activities.

If Garrett is announced as fifth on ACT’s list then there need to be some serious questions asked about the connections between the SST and ACT and about the extent these ‘anti-crime’ groups are involved in party political campaigning for ACT while refusing to register with the electoral commission.

As Rodney is claiming to be ‘New Zealand’s leading proponent of accountability and transparency’ I’m sure he’d be happy to answer any such questions openly.

For the record I have no problem with ‘tough on crime’ groups working with ‘tough on crime’ parties but I definitely want to know who it is that is trying to win my vote and how much they are spending to do so.

Update: Changed heading to “ACT’s fifth Candidate”. I doubt they’ll get to five MPs. I must be having a slow brain day.

49 comments on “ACT’s fifth Candidate?”

  1. “For the record I have no problem with “tough on crime’ groups working with “tough on crime’ parties ”

    Even when they don’t respect human rights?… I sure hope not.

  2. randal 2

    the worst thing about all these right wing nutbar groups is their desire to crack nuts with a sledgehammer. they dont want to k now the truth about anything. they just want to crush anything and everything they dont agree with which unfortunately is most things except tight underpants and excess profits.

  3. i don’t think irish is saying he agrees with their views, he just doesn’t have trouble with cooperation between like-minded groups when it’s transperant.

    captcha ‘and the multitude’ – Labour’s re-election strategy? (three words, I know, weird)

  4. higherstandard 4

    IB

    From their website.

    “Is this group affiliated with ACT or any other political party?

    No, Sensible Sentencing is an apolitical organisation, we do not align ourselves with any particular political party or ideology, instead we seek to persuade politicians of all stripes to support our goals. We are currently giving Labour a hard time, but this is only because they are the party in Government. We will be equally hard on National or any other party that comes into power should they fall short in balancing the scales of justice so that victims get a better deal.”

    You can quote this back to them if your allegations prove to be true.

  5. Daveo 5

    higherstandard

    The AAG also claims they’re non-partisan even after the EPMU documents laid out their ACT affiliations in black and white including their shifty dealings with Rodney Hide.

    I’m really interested in the social and economic agenda stuff. Who’s funding these groups and what are they really playing at?

  6. Three stikes and your out for violent crime should be passed and made into law.

    [‘you’re out’ – it’s an abbreviation of ‘you are’ not the possessive of the second person. SP]

  7. gobsmacked 7

    ACT should put that angry dude from the (self-appointed) Anti-Asian Crime Group on the list. The media love him. And he could get the triads to “assist” any wavering voters to make up their mind.

  8. Matthew Pilott 8

    Brett Dale – how about one strike for white collar crimes? They hurt a lot more people.

  9. BeShakey 9

    Whew, thanks Brett. I was wondering what to think, and now you’ve told me. Gives a real insight into the intellect of SST supporters.

  10. gobsmacked. in the AAG-ACT agreement that Shawn Tan wrote, Peter Low was meant to be on the ACT list… if i remember correctly, AAG wanted 3 places in the top ten, but I guess it became impossible to have Low on the list when he went off at Sean Plunkett.

  11. Jasper 11

    I actually like the three strikes law.

    However, rather than doing anything draconian, the 3 strikes should be amended so that it only covers petty crime – graffiti, theft, vandalism etc.
    It’s often been said that our youth are “bored” and “lacking self awareness”
    I’m all for getting people with 3 strikes into the armed forces (navy, airforce, army) as cadets, for a mandatory sentence of 12 months. Cheaper than prison, and rather than teaching them further criminal skills, it’d give them some self respect, some dignity, and a realisation that they can actually help people. Most might actually like the army (most Maori do) while the PI’s tend to like the Navy. Seems the white boys go for the airforce.

    Keys Boot Camp thing is just laughable, and doesn’t really show any effort or thought apart from a “well they have to go somewhere” general train of thought… someone halt the caboose, the containers haven’t been hooked up.

    Sorry for the gross generalisations, but the reality is most disaffected youth are either Maori or PI. Poor self esteem, crap home life, and low literacy contribute. A dose in the armed forces would do them a world of good. It did me wonders.

  12. Pascal's bookie 12

    The ACT list sure is democratically selected from the sounds of it.

  13. @Matthew Pilott

    Absolutely. I’m getting tired of all these corporate crooks abusing their workers and getting the wet bus ticket treatment! It’s like those idiot employers who were taking employer KS contributions out of their workers pay. That lot deserve JAIL!

  14. jbc 14

    how about one strike for white collar crimes? They hurt a lot more people.

    Thanks for that insight.

    I’d still rather our whole family fall victim to a bank collapse than have one of my kids fall victim to a violent criminal – or even be killed by another kid having ‘fun’ with concrete blocks.

  15. Matthew Pilott 15

    Thanks jbc. It’s not much good, though, appreciating someone’s insight if you only apply it to one situation, and use the most narrow application you can imagine.

  16. jbc 16

    Matthew, I agree that white-collar crime does hurt a lot of people. Yes I think that white collar criminals get a way with far too much. Loan sharks, dodgy CEOs, vindictive employers: they are all scum in my eyes too.

    However (a very big however), violent crimes against people are a hell of a lot worse.

    generally speaking, victims of white-collar crime get to walk away.

    That white-collar criminals should somehow be treated more severely than those who commit direct hands-on crime against people I find absurd.

    But it seems I am holding the minority view here.

  17. Vanilla Eis 17

    jbc: It depends on the scale of the crime. I’m pretty sure that almost anyone with a Bluechip investment right now would gladly take a punch in the face to get the money they’re owed.

  18. Scribe 18

    SP,

    “transperant” is not a word. Were you looking for “transparent”?

    [I only raise this because you’ve played spelling/grammar police above. Why bother? People knew what he meant.]

  19. Anita 19

    Given Marc Alexander and Steven Franks are both on the National list and the SST has worked with Ron Mark in the past (I seem to remember) getting a high ranked ACT candidate is hardly political monogamy.

    It would allow me a new route for the political spit game, tho Franks and Alexander are usually all the promiscuity I need.

  20. Rex Widerstrom 20

    Whether white collar crime or the other sort (hoodie crime?) the problem with the “Sensible” Sentencing Trust is summarised succinctly in its name.

    They have the rather quaint belief that locking them up and, if not throwing away the key then hiding for increasingly lengthy periods, is the best answer to reducing offending.

    In my view, police, justice and corrections policy should have two primary objectives:

    1. To prevent the occurrence of crime.
    2. To prevent an offender re-offending.

    If those aims were met, the rest of us would not fall victim to crimes of any coloured collar.

    Ideas about punishment, retribution, bread-and-water, hard labour etc have a place in those policies only to the degree they achieve the aim of protecting society.

    Thus if we punish someone harshly because it feels good to do so without considering whether that is the best means by which we can prevent that person re-offending we are in fact placing society at risk.

    The SST sepcialises in righteous indignation and “easy” solutions centred on ever-harsher punishments.

    Since Act is a party which acknowledges in other policies that, given the right set of motivators, people will – and should be allowed to – make the right choices, it seems an incongruous pairing, if it’s true. I only hope not.

  21. From thier website: “We are currently giving Labour a hard time, but this is only because they are the party in Government. We will be equally hard on National or any other party that comes into power should they fall short in balancing the scales of justice so that victims get a better deal.’

    The problem of course here is that under Labour, crime is going down, they are claiming it is going up. Whats the bet if National came in, a year later they miraculously discover the statistics?

    Personally I think Garth McVicars exploitation of Harry Young’s greif over Edgeware Rd in Christchurch is the most discusting peice of politics I have seen in my life.

  22. From thier website: “We are currently giving Labour a hard time, but this is only because they are the party in Government. We will be equally hard on National or any other party that comes into power should they fall short in balancing the scales of justice so that victims get a better deal.’

    The problem of course here is that under Labour, crime is going down, they are claiming it is going up. Whats the bet if National came in, a year later they miraculously discover the statistics?

    Personally I think Garth McVicars exploitation of Harry Young’s greif over Edgeware Rd in Christchurch is the most discusting peice of politics I have seen in my life.

  23. Billy 23

    Who are these white collar criminals that are supposedly getting away with crimes?

    These guys?

    Her?

    Maybe these guys?

    It seems to me that this is a convenient myth used by the left to excuse violent criminals. (Who can’t help being violent because capitalism made them do it).

  24. Billy 24

    Oh fcku. My links didn’t work. Can we just take it as read that they were links to stories about the prosecution and/or conviction of white collar criminals.

  25. jbc 25

    I’m pretty sure that almost anyone with a Bluechip investment right now would gladly take a punch in the face to get the money they’re owed

    Interesting point. Very true.

    Many people would probably queue up for a punch in the face if they were rewarded sufficiently.

    There are already many who choose self-harm for some financial reward. Miners used to cut off their thumbs, I believe.

    But unfortunately violent crime doesn’t work quite the same way.

    What if they were told there was a small chance the punch would leave them permanently disfigured? Maybe a tiny chance they could fall and die? What if the punch was randomly delivered to someone in their immediate family?

  26. randal 26

    well all very good an’ all but the only sentence the sensible sentencing trust seems to support is hanging. they sure dont want to pay for more prisons and they sure dont want to believe erving goffmans contention that after seven years in jail that one is effectively institutionalised and permanently socially useless.

  27. Vanilla Eis 27

    jbc: Very good points, and I’m not trying to play down the effects of violent crime.

    However, I am trying to say that white-collar crime can have massive consequenses for the victims and that your statement:

    “However (a very big however), violent crimes against people are a hell of a lot worse.”

    doesn’t always hold true.

  28. Matthew Pilott 28

    Billy, jbc, I agree with both of your points in several respects. I was guilty of making a flippant remark in response to an orchestrated litany of flippancy from the SST, ACT and the AAG.

    I think Rex Widerstrom has put it better – harsher punishments for retribution, dressed up as “victims’ rights”, may cause more harm than good.

    If this lot really wanted to protect our society they’d be looking at best practice restorative justice and rehabilitation.

    Say I’m the victim of a violent crime. As a victim, I might feel aggrieved if the perpetrator gets a sentence of, say, 3 years. Especially if someone tells me it’s a light sentence. Would I be happy with 5? Maybe. 10? Probably. Would the offender be equally likely to reoffend after 3, 5 or 10 years? I’d suggest a ‘yes’.

    A knee-jerk comment is for ‘longer sentences’. Very little evidence they are a deterrent, or lead to better outcomes. So I thought I’d ask for the same, equally useless law for white collar crimes, and see what came of it.

    Billy, one extra “‘” at the end of those links, somehow.

  29. jbc 29

    Matthew, Vanilla, ok – I stretched that point a little far – took the bait and ran with it.

    Agree with Rex’s points.

    I think that certainty of conviction and consistency of sentence are most important. Although I do believe that there is a deterrent effect in the perceived harshness of the sentence – I accept that NZ might not want to take that to it’s conclusion. It is a discussion worth having though.

    Unfortunately I suspect that once an individual enters the criminal justice system it is already too late. Not saying that rehabilitation is impossible – just that it’s the old ‘ambulance at the bottom of the cliff’ scenario.

    Prevention is a tricky thing though. Alcohol is undoubtedly a big factor (esp during pregnancy). But I enjoy a drink myself, so who am I to deny that from others…

  30. Draco T Bastard 30

    First Link
    Second Link
    Third link

    Fixed Billy.

    Captcha: magneto monthly, The Standard likes X-Men comics?

  31. Billy 31

    Thanks, Draco.

  32. “… but I definitely want to know who it is that is trying to win my vote and how much they are spending to do so.”

    I’m sure you do unless of course it is the EPMU or CTU acting on Labours behalf ?

  33. Zarchoff 33

    “If Garrett is announced as fifth on ACT’s list then there need to be some serious questions asked about the connections between the SST and ACT and about the extent these “anti-crime’ groups are involved in party political campaigning for ACT while refusing to register with the electoral commission.”

    Well, grow some balls and ask then. In fact why don’t you lodge a complaint with the electoral commission. Of course, they might then investigate members of unions, on full pay, using union owned vehicles, in union time, putting up Labour party billboards!

  34. IrishBill 34

    Both the CT and the EPMU are registered as third parties under the EFA. They are both openly campaigning for parties that share their interests and will both have to account to the EC for their election campaigning activities and expenditure.

    I see no such transparency from the Sensible Sentencing Trust.

  35. David Garrett 35

    I see you are only interested in comments which, in the main, agree with your…”we submit freedom of speech so long as you agree with us” ??

  36. That comment was incomprehensible – are you drunk, David?

  37. David Garrett 37

    …it appears that you may not have censored my comment, but rather I didn’t understand how to make one… “type two words” and all that…

    The original contributor to this dialogue describes the “three strikes” law I drafted as “draconian”..I wonder if he or she knows the meaning of that word? I would bet money that he/she has not read my draft…

    Both of my dictionaries define “draconian” as meaning “overly harsh” and/or “cruel”…

    Well, the proposed law does the following: 1) defines “strike” offences as offences involving serious violence (they are also listed in a schedule to the Act) so there can be none of the ambiguity found in American versions of such laws; 2) requires a sentencing Judge to warn someone convicted of a second “strike” offence that if they are convicted of another listed offence involving violence, they WILL go away for 25 years to life. 3) makes it clear that the law has no retrospective effect.

    You say that is “overly harsh” or “cruel” ??

    If so, the nameless contributor demonstrates just how far he or she has departed from the views of ordinary New Zealanders.. and the Labour Party I once supported….

  38. David Garrett 38

    No, not drunk, just 50 years old and something of a technophobe/net neophyte….some of us still prefer the printed word!

    I note however that “Robinsod” wishes to hide behind a pseudonym while I am happy to use my own name…

    [lprent: so? I use a pseudonym that I’ve used for what? 20 odd years… Steve Pierson uses his. Both of our names are known – what does it matter?

    What is it with this recent crowd of infantile newbies and pseudonyms? Read what people write. That is what you should be making your judgments on, not if it is possible to isolate them in real life. If people choose to tell you what their background is, then fine. If someone is bullshitting, then you’ll usually find out pretty fast from the horseshit they spew.

    It is only the newbies that have an issue with this. Pseudonyms have been running as long as I’ve been on the nets. Grow up and run with the net. ]

  39. Pascal's bookie 39

    David the word you are looking for is n00b.

    And give over on the silent majority nonsense. They’re silent right? That means you don’t know what they bloody think, so so stop putting your crap ideas in their mouth.

    It’s exactly the equivalent of claiming that ‘the lurkers support me in email’, which is epic fail.

    If you don’t like pseudonyms, tough. It was good enough the pamphleteers in days gone by sonny jim, and folks have got their reasons. For the most part it’s about having arguments stand on their own merits and not getting distracted by claims on authority.

    Welcome to the blogs.

  40. David Garrett 40

    perhaps some kind proponent of free speech can spell it out for me…I note that the “type two words” box does not appear reliably…do you have to click the icon above the “speaker” icon to make it appear?

    Look forward to your reasoned comment on my post Robinsod; I realise that will be a bit more difficult than simply picking up on a typo…if you read it through a couple of times (to check for typos) you might even feel confident enough to use you own name…

  41. David Garrett 41

    sorry, aside from not understanding what “not getting distracted on claims on authority” is supposed to mean, I am still not convinced that there is any good reason to hide one’s opinions behind pseudonyms…newspapers stopped accepting letters to the editor from “Ratepayer” and “Mother” about 20 years ago…

  42. Draco T Bastard 42

    “not getting distracted on claims on authority’

    Well, considering that we’ve had people on this blog claiming to be the Owen Glenn. I’ve been on some forums where I’ve seen people claiming to be David Bowie, or the president of the US or Maggy Thatcher etc. As there’s no easy way to determine if anyone is telling the truth about the name that they’re using then there’s no point in actually taking any note of it or any authority that they may claim to have. You’re David Garrett but which one?

  43. Pascal's bookie 43

    That’s the one. No one knows David, so it doesn’t matter see? I could be a professor of some relevant subject posting under my own name, or under a pseud, or I could be a raving madman posting under a pseud, or under the name of a professor that I got from the phone book to try and boost my credentials.

    So it’s best just to ignore all that and address what people say and not get hung up on what identifier they are using. As long as commenters use a consistent pseud, what the hell does it matter?

  44. Pascal's bookie 44

    David, under your law, if someone’s got 2 strikes, and they get in a fight that would qualify for a third, they’d best make sure their victim can’t identify them yeah?

  45. David – with respect to the many bloggers who contribute to this blog, you won’t get a fair hearing here. Especially if you are the ACT number 5. 🙂

    My blog however welcomes everybody… I have even been nice to Robinsod lately.

    [lprent; then you’re doing better at that than I do. There are times that his flamewar igniting behavior makes me lean on the ban button heavily. It is easy to stay commenting on here – just stay in the bounds of behaviour (and read the Policy at the top of the screen). ]

  46. IrishBill 46

    David, I believe that any law that fails to allow for mitigating circumstances and case-by-case juridical judgment and instead treats crime in simplistic black and white terms is both draconian and an insult to our judiciary.

    While you are here would you like to explain why the Sensible Sentencing Trust is refusing to register as a third party and whether they will be supporting your campaign or ACT’s in any way?

  47. Matthew Pilott 47

    David – if you’re having trouble with the recaptcha (‘type two words’ box – it’s a tool the site uses to make sure that automated comments don’t get through, it takes a human to read and re-enter the words), you can click on the top button (‘refresh’, with the two arrows) to get a new set of words.

    You’re probably using Internet Explorer 6 or 7, on those browsers the field in which you type the words sometimes goes AWOL. Usually refreshing the challenge will make the entry field reappear. You may also need to refresh if the words are hard to read. Finally, select and copy your comment after typing it out before submiting it is an idea while you get used to it – saves re-typing the comment out if it doesn’t appear.

    On topic – is there any evidence that such laws actually serve any purpose? Let’s be honest, sentencing as a deterrent doesn’t work, and never has. You only have to look at crime rates in countries with the capital punishment to figure that out.

    Is there any evidence that a 25 year sentence is more ‘rehabilitating’? While I understand the concept of victims’ rights, what is overlooked is that the victim wants retribution – but the societally optimal outcome is rehabilitation. If, in acceding to victims rights we promote laws that don’t help society, we’re cutting our noses to spite our collective face.

    As I see it, such a law will make victims think that ‘the system’ is working, while doing nothing for, or having a negative effect upon, actual crime rates. In the end, it will just create more victims, at an exorbitant cost of incarceration.

  48. If anyone has substantive evidence that these groups are spending more than they are legally able to without registering (a number of advertisements in major media and you’d be over), then they should report them to the police for investigation. That would make things interesting!

  49. David Garrett 49

    I will respond to Pascal’s Bookie first, and then address the more numerous points in Matthew Pilott’s post. And at the risk of sounding naive (I am a “newbie” at this blog thingie) thank you both for actually engaging in debate. I would like to think that even on this “blog” there would be some attempt to do so, without just spouting “the party line.”

    Leaving aside that “fighting” would not be a “strike” offence, Pascal’s Bookie makes a valid point; it’s actually the same one which has been made to rebut arguments that rape should not be made a life imprisonment (or even capital) offence because to do so might encourage a rapist to kill so as to leave no witness.

    It is impossible to argue that the effect PB points to may not happen. However, I am a believer in Utilitarianism, and I believe that a “three strikes” law will both deter very many others from crossing that “third strike” line, and more obviously, will protect people – like the Panmure RSA victims – from thugs who have not merely three but 33 “strikes” before they get the chance to kill.

    Which seques neatly into Matthew Pilott’s first point, “do such laws work”? Well, the short answer is of course they do in a direct sense; had Bell and Burton not been released (both of them had lenghty criminal histories for violence prior to the sentences from which they were ulitmately paroled) neither would have been in a position to kill four more people (Bell three and Burton one)

    While I am all in favour of rehabilitation as an ideal – particularly for young or first offenders – frankly someone who has got themselves to the point where they are subject to a 25 year to life sentence has already proved that , for whatever reason, they are not capable of rehabilitation. Rehab thus becomes very much a secondary consideration to that of protection of society from them.

    One stat which should give you all great pause (please be my guest and check it); as at November last year when I obtained this information on an OIA request, 77 people were serving life sentences for murder who had, prior to being incarcerated for murder, served at least three prior prison sentences for violent offences.

    Since many “sentence episodes” (to use Justice Department jargon) cover multiple offences, most if not all of those 77 will have had many more than three convictions for offences of violence prior to the murder which now finds them behind bars.

    Think about that for a moment; 77 people – three busloads – would be alive today if, a the time they were killed, New Zealand had had a “three strikes” law as I have drafted it. And no-one would be in jail for the mythical “stealing a chocolate bar led to 25 years to life.”

    [lprent: Debate is what this place is for, and it is seldom that the commentators follow anyones party lines. For that matter neither do the posters – there is very little editorial control. Moderation is targeted at people who try to stop that debate with particular types of disruptive behavior. It is not targeted at people arguing points and engaging with others. There is a guideline in the Policy, but it is only a guideline. We allow quite robust debate here (the basis is that people should always be prepared to defend their points and ideas), but there always has to be a point. ]

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    The UN climate summit is happening in new York next week, and unlike previous years, coal-burners and denier-states are not being invited to speak:Leading economies such as Japan and Australia will not be invited to speak at next week’s crunch UN climate change summit, as their continued support for coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    3 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    3 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    5 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    6 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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