ACT’s failed charter school protest in tweets

Written By: - Date published: 8:30 am, May 1st, 2018 - 101 comments
Categories: act, david seymour, Media, twitter - Tags:

https://twitter.com/JGreenbrookHeld/status/990733110105944065

https://twitter.com/JGreenbrookHeld/status/990733115772448770

https://twitter.com/JGreenbrookHeld/status/990733120512057344

https://twitter.com/JGreenbrookHeld/status/990733124916019201

https://twitter.com/JGreenbrookHeld/status/990734791950528514

https://twitter.com/JGreenbrookHeld/status/990734795972866048

https://twitter.com/JGreenbrookHeld/status/990734797822615553

101 comments on “ACT’s failed charter school protest in tweets”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    “…Who in their right mind thinks Mr Dancing With The Stars is still a good political investment..?”

    Alan “Amphibious cars are the next big thing trust me” Gibbs, probably.

    • Anne 1.1

      My immediate response too.

      He’s so filthy rich $20,000 is just change he pulled out of his trouser pocket. He’s a nasty piece of work with a gross ego who thinks he’s above the law of the land. And I say that from personal experience albeit 20 plus years ago.

      • s y d 1.1.1

        amphibious gibbs

        • Frankie and Benjie 1.1.1.1

          I’m puzzled as to why National isn’t helping push ACT up in the polls in some way. They seem to be happy for ACT to sink out of sight. No friends National should be desperate to keep any chance afloat or maybe they are positioning for a new Blue/Green party to con enough votes away from the coalition?

          • Anne 1.1.1.1.1

            … maybe they are positioning for a new Blue/Green party to con enough votes away from the coalition?

            That is precisely what they’re up to.

            Back in the 70s and 80s they jeered at Labour’s anti-nuclear policy, then in the 90s it dawned on them there were votes to be gained from going anti-nuclear so they changed their stance. They’re doing it again over environmental issues (note they are avoiding using the words ‘Climate Change’) and they’ll fool plenty of people into believing its genuine.

          • Matthew Whitehead 1.1.1.1.2

            Even if National had bought that they need a coalition partner to be viable, (and I don’t think they have) ACT would not be that partner. They are a shell of a party that exists in hope that they lose the party vote well enough to get National an extra seat when their voters throw Epsom to them, and they have no embedded constituency, no coherent ideology, and no real party infrastructure. They are an active waste of time for the right-wing beyond gifting them Epsom.

            • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.1.2.1

              They are a shell of a party that exists in hope that they lose the party vote well enough to get National an extra seat when their voters throw Epsom to them

              And thus proving their disregard of even the limited democracy that we have.

            • tracey 1.1.1.1.2.2

              I thought I read Bridges or someone saying the other day that 44% isnt enough, they need to get higher? So I guess they are aiming to govern alone and if fall one short, Rimmer.

              I bet ACT members have been bust registering multiple identities to get Rimmers popularity up on DWS as they did for Hide

  2. millsy 2

    The whole purpose of charter schools was to indoctrinate poor kids into Christian Dominionism and free market economics, turning the sons and daughters of South Auckland into passive consumers, who only know a trade, support the All Blacks and believe in the Young Earth creationism. Unquestionably supporting the National Party.

    • solkta 2.1

      I thought the purpose of Charter Schools was that they form the thin end of the wedge by which Nact could privatise the whole education system, as has been their desire since the 90s?

      • Frankie and Benjie 2.1.1

        I agree that was the purpose Charter Schools were planned for. They were then “given” to ACT to “promote” as part of an agreement after the election (even thought neither ACT nor National had campaigned on them as a policy?), if my memory serves me correctly.

  3. Incognito 3

    That turnout is about as high as a Decile 1 school sausage sizzler somewhere in the regions. Mind you, it was the last day of the School Holidays 😉

  4. Chris T 4

    Ahh yes. Charter schools

    The working things no one seems to have a problem with (as far as I can see), apart from Labour and the unions ………………. not counting Kelvin and Willie.

    • solkta 4.1

      The Greens and NZF also oppose Charter Schools and there is widespread concern amongst the general public about the privatisation of education.

      You obviously can’t see very far.

    • millsy 4.2

      Don’t come crying to me when gays are swinging from power poles in South Auckland and you cannot burrow “The Origin of Species” anywhere because charter school educated councillors have pulled then from the libararies.

      • Stunned Mullet 4.2.1

        Eh – not all charter schools are full immersion religious are they ?

        • millsy 4.2.1.1

          Religious groups have made bids in the past to run these schools. Alwyn Poole’s school teaches creationism. There is no doubt that companies connected to the US evangelist sector would have been handed charter schools in Porirua and South Auckland this term had National governed.

          • Stunned Mullet 4.2.1.1.1

            Strange I was under the impression they would be required to teach the NZ curriculum ?

        • JanM 4.2.1.2

          No – some of them are schools which have taken the opportunity to offer education with a kaupapa Maori emphasis

          • Lettuce 4.2.1.2.1

            Those schools have been offered the chance to become “special character” public schools with genuinely qualified and registered teachers – everybody wins!

            • JanM 4.2.1.2.1.1

              Indeed – and at least some of them, like the one my son teaches at, already do the qualified and registered teacher thing, as well as NCEA, etc

              • dukeofurl

                So whats their point if they are doing the same as state and integrated private schools are doing now.

                • JanM

                  Did you not read my first comment? – I guess you haven’t a clue what I’m talking about

      • Peter ChCh 4.2.2

        If that happens it will have little to so with Charter Schools and lots to do with the increased immigration of Muslims, particularly those from the Middle East. Islam and Homosexually, or indeed lersonal freedom, have little 8n common.

        • You_Fool 4.2.2.1

          About as much in common as fundamental christian values do… but then the majority of Muslims have about as much in common with strict sharia law as most Christians have with fundamentalist bible teachings…

          By the way, I have your pearls right here, you seem to have squeezed them too hard

      • Chris T 4.2.3

        A lot of them aren’t religious and a lot of private schools the tax payer partly funds are.

    • millsy 4.3

      Willie Jackson has made it clear that he doesn’t want big churches and big corporations running schools

      • Stunned Mullet 4.3.1

        Really, what’s his plan for the very many Catholic, Anglican and Presbyterian schools in NZ and also the occasional Islamic schools that are popping up ?

        Also which big corporations is Willie particularly concerned about – I was unaware there were any large corporations interested in setting up schools in NZ ?

        • dukeofurl 4.3.1.1

          There is in early childhood education.

          We could assume Serco Schools, an offshoot of Serco prisons will arrive at some stage

        • Marcus Morris 4.3.1.2

          Those of us who support a free non-secular education, as promulgated in the 1877 Education Act, lost the “state aid” battle long ago largely through the power of the R.C. vote. It is true that other religious groups have benefitted from this (who would have thought that Whanganui Collegiate would ever have sought integrated status) but many small rural towns still maintain their convent schools so a significant number of New Zealand children have a state aided religious education.

          As for Charter schools – after noting the benefit that a close relative of mine gained through attending the Vanguard School in Rosedale I am somewhat ambivalent although I am very much opposed to them in principle.

          (as an aside, this relative of mine attended an integrated private school (not R.C.) for ten years and at the end of Year 11 had achieved absolutely nothing – he thrived on the discipline of the Vanguard School.)

          • alwyn 4.3.1.2.1

            “lost the “state aid” battle long”
            I suppose you have never forgiven Norman Kirk for that have you?
            The Roman Catholic church had a lot to thank that bigoted old bastard for.
            I can’t imagine that Fran Wilde’s bill on homosexual law reform would ever have seen the light of day if Norm had survived.

            • Marcus Morris 4.3.1.2.1.1

              Thanks for that fatuous remark about Norm Kirk. It prompted me to do a little bit of research and to remind myself of the event. It was Phil Amos who paved the way for the integration of private schools into the state system and so to receive substantial financial support. I think that, tragically for the country as a whole, Norm had died by that time. What I was reminded of however, was the incredible amount of social reform the Labour Government achieved in that three year term. You might like to have a look yourself.

              • mpledger

                It was actually cheaper to pay for the kids to be continue to be taught in RC schools then if the schools closed and the kids all went to the state schools – there would have been a huge building program needed. It was a bit of a win-win.

                • Marcus Morris

                  That is precisely the argument I was referring to. There is no doubt that if the Private (mainly Roman Catholic) schools had closed overnight the state system would not have been unable to cope so the “threat” was essentially moral blackmail. Had there never been any private schools then the state would have already provided for those students. However the debate was long consigned to history and so, I have to admit, become pointless.

          • Baba Yaga 4.3.1.2.2

            I think what you’re saying is ‘one size doesn’t fit all’? That is precisely the case with education, which is why choice is good. Problem is, unions hate choice, and Labour is in bed with the unions…

            • Marcus Morris 4.3.1.2.2.1

              I am not saying that at all. I am saying, as was said so often at the time of the debate (which lasted many years) that if people want their children to be educated under the “auspices” of a particular faith then that is their absolute right but they should not expect the state (in other words those who don’t subscribe to their religious beliefs) to subsidise this. Many of us old enough to remember those arguments still hold that view but have long since resigned ourselves to the status quo. I am sure that you will come back with the old chestnut that those who did press for support were doing the opposite and subsidising the state. Well, you won, we lost.

              • Baba Yaga

                “…if people want their children to be educated under the “auspices” of a particular faith then that is their absolute right but they should not expect the state (in other words those who don’t subscribe to their religious beliefs) to subsidise this.”
                First of all I was referring to Partnership Schools, not religious schools. But seeing as you raise them…

                There is no such thing as benign education. Education always follows one philosophy or another. Secular education follows secular ideology. Religious parents could equally argue that they don’t expect to have to subsidise the children of parents who choose to send their children to secular schools.

                “Well, you won, we lost.”
                Really? There are hundreds of religious schools across NZ that receive government funding. And even more if you included ECE. Who won?

                • Marcus Morris

                  Sorry I thought that was obvious. Those who fought for state aid to private schools “won”. Can you define “secular ideology”. I guess “flat earthers” and “creationists” might support your argument but secular education is essentially neutral when it comes to ideology – I taught in state secondary schools throughout the country for over forty years and, apart from encouraging students to be honest, to work and play hard, be kind to each other and to obey the law i.e. be good citizens (I suppose this all could be construed as ideology) there was no other obvious philosophy which motivated any of those schools.

                  • Baba Yaga

                    “Those who fought for state aid to private schools “won”.”
                    You seem to not understand how the education system in NZ is funded.
                    Private schools receive no government funding. There is no ‘state aid’ provided to private schools.
                    Integrated schools do receive government funding, as they should.

                    All children are entitled to state support for their education, and should receive the same level of subsidy wherever they chose to attend.

                    Can you define “secular ideology”.
                    I’ll leave you to look that up, but your assertion that children who receive their education in religious schools should not receive the same subsidy as those who choose to be educated in a state school is itself an ideological position.

                    “…secular education is essentially neutral when it comes to ideology…”
                    Rubbish. There is no such thing as ideologically ‘neutral’.

                    • Marcus Morris

                      I understand very well how our funding works – okay it is a question of semantics. There are very few private schools in New Zealand now under your definition. As I say in a previous post even that most elitist of erstwhile “private” schools, Whanganui Collegiate, has long since been integrated. The battle over state aid to private schools, which was the original terminology used in the debate, has long since been lost and those of us who opposed it have long since learned to “suck it up” albeit begrudgingly.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “There are very few private schools in New Zealand now under your definition. ”

                      Clearly you don’t understand.

                      https://www.educationcounts.govt.nz/data-services/directories/list-of-nz-schools
                      There are close to 100 ‘private’ schools, educating around 5% of the total number of school pupils ( https://www.newzealandnow.govt.nz/living-in-nz/education/school-system).

                      “The battle over state aid to private schools, which was the original terminology used in the debate, has long since been lost and those of us who opposed it have long since learned to “suck it up” albeit begrudgingly.”

                      You’re repeating the same error. Private schools get NO state aid. None. Zero.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “Government proposes more funding to private schools, for equity’s sake”

                      Yes, that would certainly have made things fairer. At the moment parents of private school pupils effectively subsidise the education of public school pupils.

                    • solkta

                      In a “fair” system ALL children would get the same standard of quality education.

                      If parents choose not to use the state system then they should pay the full cost.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “In a “fair” system ALL children would get the same standard of quality education. ”
                      Human nature determines this is a pipe dream.

                      “If parents choose not to use the state system then they should pay the full cost.”
                      Why should they subsidise children who attend public schools?

                    • solkta

                      You brought up the idea of fairness. Either you want it or you don’t.

                      If the state provides you with something and you choose not to take it then that is your choice.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “You brought up the idea of fairness.”
                      When?

                      “If the state provides you with something and you choose not to take it then that is your choice.”
                      Indeed, and you should be able to take the value of that something and transfer it to another provider.

                • Marcus Morris

                  I forgot to emphasise that the 1877 ACT provided for free, secular education for ALL. No one was excluded on any grounds.

                  • Baba Yaga

                    Private schools provide a secular education. But it is not free.

                    • Marcus Morris

                      Thanks for the address that you gave me. I came across this statement from the governments own page.

                      “Private (or independent) schools charge fees, but also receive some funding from the government. They are governed by their own independent boards and must meet certain standards to be registered with the Ministry of Education. They don’t have to follow the New Zealand Curriculum but must follow a learning programme of at least the same quality.”

                      Perhaps you might like to modify your assertion.

                    • Marcus Morris

                      I am repeating no error. You have misread my lines. The State Aid to Private Schools debate at that time (goodness knows when it began but it was raging throughout the sixties and into the seventies until Phil Amos ushered in the compromise of integration) referred to any school not in the state system. “Integrated” and other definitions were not even known at that time.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      ““Private (or independent) schools charge fees, but also receive some funding from the government. They are governed by their own independent boards and must meet certain standards to be registered with the Ministry of Education. They don’t have to follow the New Zealand Curriculum but must follow a learning programme of at least the same quality.”
                      Perhaps you might like to modify your assertion.”

                      No, you have misread the comment you cite, which refers to a combination of private and independent schools.

                      From https://www.newzealandnow.govt.nz/living-in-nz/education/school-system

                      “Private schools are not government funded – they charge set fees by the school term or year. The amount is typically around NZ$20,000 a year. Financial assistance may be available.”

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “I am repeating no error. ”
                      Yes you are. You’re repeating the error that private schools receive state funding.

            • mpledger 4.3.1.2.2.2

              If Charter Schools can meet the standards expected of state schools then they can stay open and parent’s will still have that choice.

              It’s not the parents who are objecting to that, it’s the Charter School because it’s going to be costly. That’s why they can’t get the parents to demonstrate because the parents don’t see the problem.

              • Marcus Morris

                I might be wrong but I think that part of the issue here is that some of these schools are run for profit – money which should be spent on the public education system. I stand to be corrected.

                • Baba Yaga

                  There is only one Partnership School run on a ‘for profit’ basis. All others are NFP.

              • Baba Yaga

                Partnership schools are delivering better results for less cost. But the unions don’t like them, so the government will break the contracts and they will shut.

                • Marcus Morris

                  Evidence please.

                  • Baba Yaga

                    For which part?

                    If you want to know more about what PS’s are achieving, I suggest you read the Martin Jenkins report at http://www.educationcounts.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/184841/Multi-Year-Evaluation-of-Partnership-Schools-Kura-Hourua-Policy-Final-Evaluation-Report.pdf.

                    There are the natural caveats, but this report shows PS’s are engaging a demographic that were previously at risk. Labour are married to the unions, however, so even those within Labour who support PS’s (and there are a number) have to swallow this dead rat.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “However, administrative data showed engagement “significantly improved for students” enrolled in charter schools. It said students at partnership schools were more likely to complete a Level 3 NCEA exam and more likely to go on to tertiary studies than to go into work straight from school. Current students made up almost 50 per cent of the report, while 15 of 350 graduates answered the survey, and 4 per cent of answers were from parents of students who left charter schools before graduating. Parents said smaller class sizes attracted them to the model, which later met 80 per cent of families’ expectations. Just over 40 per cent said their chosen school had values similar to their own. The report said the schools attracted previously transient or disengaged learners, a good understanding of its students and “innovative practices”. “Whānau … reported feeling more involved in their child’s learning, and more confident communicating [with the school].””

                      https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/102930269/Charter-schools-a-success-say-parents-in-report-ahead-of-potential-closures

                      Of course Labour don’t really give a toss how parents feel about their children’s education.

                    • Marcus Morris

                      “Labour are married to the unions, however, so even those within Labour who support PS’s (and there are a number) have to swallow this dead rat.”
                      You have certainly widened the debate here. Of course Labour is married to the unions. Luckily for the vast majority of us the Unions spawned the Party and for a large part of its history it was assisted hugely by funding from the Unions. Right wing parties too are massively financed by groups and individuals with a vested interested in furthering their policies. I think here you might be referring specifically to the two Teacher Associations, the NZEI and the PPTA. I cannot be certain but I think that I am safe in saying that neither group has ever made a direct or indirect contribution to the Labour Party. What I can say is that they are both highly professional bodies who have contributed magnificently to the development of education in this country. The interests of their members and their members’ clients, i.e students and their parents have always been central to their activities.
                      ” course Labour don’t (doesn’t??) really give a toss how parents feel about their children’s education.
                      This nonsensical statement merely highlights your own political bias.

                    • Baba Yaga

                      “What I can say is that they are both highly professional bodies who have contributed magnificently to the development of education in this country. ”

                      Oh I don’t doubt you believe that. But in opposing Partnership Schools for nothing more than ideology, these unions reveal their concern is not for children but for their own survival. It’s sickening.

          • repateet 4.3.1.2.3

            About your relative. Do you think there could have been a rage of factors which saw him thriving which were incidental to him being at a charter school?

            • Marcus Morris 4.3.1.2.3.1

              That is a fair question. His siblings did exceptionally well at that same private school. There would have been a number of factors at play but my feeling is that the lad responded positively to the particular discipline regime (essentially military) that this school offered.

      • pdm 4.3.2

        As I understand it Willie Jackson has an involvement in a Charter School which his wife runs.

      • Stuart Munro 4.3.3

        Better the larger established churches than ones like Destiny or Gloriavale.

        • Stunned Mullet 4.3.3.1

          Oh I agree, although the large established churches have also had their fair share of ratbags over the years.

    • Michelle 4.4

      Chris T, Willie said the government set the charter schools up (initially) but then expected them to get their own money ( stand on their own feet) he mentioned 2 million for the kura he was involved in. Also who has control and always had control of the NZ education systems and who have been the least successful. When I went to college in the early 70s I remember our pommy teacher telling two of the maori boys in my class they should do Wellington maths not school certificate maths but the dumbed down versions just because she couldn’t relate to them. Now is this good teaching practice I don’t think so and I have to wonder how many others this happened to.

    • tracey 4.5

      It is odd though that when ACT says it wants everyone treated the same, they exclude Private and Charter schools from that… otherwise they would be railing to ensure ALL children get the alleged quality of a charter school education, yet they keep supporting the falling behind of them.

      • Gosman 4.5.1

        Where did you get the idea that ACT states everyone should be treated the same? That has never been ACT party policy as far as I am aware.

  5. Stunned Mullet 5

    Who’s Jeremy Greenbrook-Held ?

    • AB 5.1

      A citizen within a democracy – just like you, me and David Seymour

      • Stunned Mullet 5.1.1

        No doubt but why are his utterings of particular merit, is he a regular commentator on education matters ?

        • Sacha 5.1.1.1

          There is nothing in his tweets above about education; just the protest.

        • AB 5.1.1.2

          Their merit stands or falls on their content- not whether someone else validates him as being ‘important’ or not. The latter is a very quick route to elite capture of discourse and policy.

  6. Cinny 6

    Charter Schools, the national party invention that didn’t require registered teachers in classrooms.

    Yeah… NAH!!!

    What parent in their right mind would pay to have their child taught by an untrained educator? Not me that’s for sure.

    Whose funding seymours campaign? That money could have been better spent on children in poverty, or donated to a school that needs more funding. Priorities, ego etc (watching dancing with the stars last night it’s obvious seymour’s ego is large, regardless of his awkward dance moves), shameful.

    • Ssorwredna 6.1

      Cinny so wrong- Charter Schools are not required to employ registered teachers but most do. Charter Schools do not charge fees. Charter Schools were an ACT policy that National sensibly backed.
      Charter schools are succeeding for students where the state school were not able to .

      • Marcus Morris 6.1.1

        I think that ACT was merely the front for a policy which the Natz were totally supportive but knew would be highly controversial.

        • tracey 6.1.1.1

          The only reason Collins isnt in ACT is cos there is only one seat available. I suspect the same of Goldsmith amongst others

      • Cinny 6.1.2

        Thanks for explaining Andrew, was under the assumption that charter schools charged large fee’s. I am into registered teachers educating children. I am into fair funding for schools and free education.

        “In September 2014, the Northland-based Te Kura Hourua ki Whangaruru in Whangaruru (a charter school) attracted controversy over its poor leadership, high absenteeism of 20%, and mismanagement of government funds. The school, which received 500% more funding than a state school, spent half its income buying a farm”

        What really pisses me off is the narrative that charter schools are succeeding for students where state schools were not able to. However the national led government bent over backwards to try and close down the only NZ residential school for girls with disabilities and behavioural problems.
        Salisbury – not a charter school – school, changes lives for girls who don’t ‘fit in’ at a state school. But hey charter schools are fine, but not Salisbury in the nat’s world.

        If charter schools adapt to the new guidelines then they won’t be closed down. And thankfully we have a new government so Salisbury School won’t be bullied into closure anymore.

        Maybe it’s the education system which is broken, but rather than fix that, charter schools were introduced?

        • tracey 6.1.2.1

          Agree. Also our schools are failing far mote than Charter schools cater for. Why do ACT and Nats keep supporting a failed public system thereby keeping it in its failure

      • Michelle 6.1.3

        Charter schools were suppose to be for the tail they were a step towards privatisation if something is wrong in the public sector we need to fix it not create another unequal playing field. Also many of those failing in public schools got the boot from charter schools. Charter schools had smaller rolls yet the national government wanted bigger rolls for public schools. Then we had private schools getting more of our tax dollars and yet the parents can claim a tax rebate but then cry they are paying twice. Well isn’t that their choice national talked about creating more choice if the public school aren’t good enough too bad why should we have to pay for the middle class to send their kids to these private schools.

        • Marcus Morris 6.1.3.1

          An interesting question would be: “Which schools do the MP’s of any party send their children.” I suspect that a fairly large proportion of the children of National’s last cabinet would have gone to elitist private schools.

      • tracey 6.1.4

        So why do ACT and Nats keep supporting a public school system that is clearly not providing quality to all?

        Disclaimer

        I object to ANY state funding of private and Charter schools with a religious doctrine/foundation.

    • Gosman 6.2

      So why are you concerned if no parents would send their kids to such schools?

  7. Gosman 7

    Who is Jeremy Greenbrook-Held when he’s at home?

    Edit: Just noted above. Some nobody then.

  8. Macro 8

    Spending $10,000 on a protest.
    Should have gone to Rent-a-Crowd.

    /sarc

    • tracey 8.1

      John Key was quoted ad infinitum calling unpaid people rent a mob. Did any media use that phrase for this protest?

  9. NZJester 9

    Thank goodness all that money being wasted on Charter schools to pad the bank accounts of those supposedly running it while having teachers aids instead of real teachers doing the schooling will be gone and the money can be put back into the public education system and real teachers.
    Charter schools in every country they were tried in before NZ where a failure and here the best of them were doing no better than our underfunded public schools, even though they were given way more money per child on their school roles. Mostly because a lesser amount of that money was actually being spent on the child’s actual education.

  10. Jenny 10

    By: NOTICES AND FEATURES
    Date published: 8:30 am, May 1st, 2018 – 51 comments
    Categories: act, david seymour, Media, twitter
    Tags: Jeremy Greenbrook-Held

    Last weekend ACT had a protest against charter schools and spent in the vicinity of $10,000 to get maybe 50 people to attend. They should have gone to Labour Hire.

    Shouldn’t that read; “Last weekend ACT had a protest for charter schools….”

    If ACT had called a protest against charter schools, I think that they would have got a lot more people to attend. (And for free).

    • dukeofurl 10.1

      So the ads were featuring Seymour ( likely paid for by charter schools) and Seymour was rousing the media over this, and you are claiming it wasnt ACT ?

      • Daveosaurus 10.1.1

        No, Jenny’s claiming that there’s an error in the article’s covering note and that it was actually a protest for charter schools, not a protest against charter schools.

  11. repateet 11

    Stuff editorial:

    “The charter schools were born out of a backroom deal between National and ACT, a tiny political sect whose intention with charter schools was to balkanise and weaken the state education system to which it remains ideologically opposed. National did the deal with ACT over charter schools as a way of keeping its right wing happy.”

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/101308505/editorial-putting-an-end-to-the-charter-schools

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    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
    15 hours 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 ...
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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 ...
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    2 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 ...
    2 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
    3 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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 ...
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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 ...
    6 days 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 ...
    6 days 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 ...
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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 ...
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    7 days 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
    7 days 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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