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An understanding of class

Written By: - Date published: 9:20 am, October 17th, 2010 - 50 comments
Categories: capitalism, class, class war, humour, tv - Tags: , ,

Here’s John Cleese, Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett in the classic “An Understanding of Class”, a lovely commentary on one of the pillars of capitalism.

Since the abandonment of class rhetoric by Labour a few decades ago, we no longer have a lot of class consciousness in New Zealand.

Which is a bit ironic really, considering class boundaries have become ever more defined with decades of successive neo-liberal governments.

50 comments on “An understanding of class”

  1. comedy 1

    Comic geniuses…………. RIP big Ronnie

  2. Santi 2

    You said: we no longer have a lot of class consciousness in New Zealand.

    Correct, and there is no need to have any. Class warfare (and communism) are dead!

    • Ari 2.2

      Class warfare is alive and well, it’s just that the upper classes are winning while they desperately say it’s done with.

      • mcflock 2.2.1

        yeah – in the late ’80s they made the “mission accomplished” speech. So much for that one…

    • millsy 2.3

      Tell that to John Key and Mr L(h)aws, who reckon we need to be bowing and scraping to those because they have a bit more money than us.

      Quite frankly, they can go and get fucked.

      • M 2.3.1

        ‘Quite frankly, they can go and get fucked.’

        My sentiments exactly. I will never ever bow to someone who has more money than me. I am a product of the working class and proud of it. In the 70s there was an upper working class who had enough money through careful management to send their kids to private schools – I, along with four siblings, were one of those lucky kids. When it came time to leave school all the kids from my school got jobs and this was during the tough early 80s so I think my parents’ money was well spent. I have retained my left leanings as you cannot have a decent society where many suffer at the hands of a few and at the most basic level it’s just plain unfair.

        Unfortunately the dumbed down masses have been hoodwinked into thinking that National cares for them because they have received a feeble tax cut and cannot see the whole picture where there is more to life than a damned tax cut. I would rather forgo a tax cut and have decent hospitals, free doctors’ visits and people receiving state help, care for the environment, decent social policy and massive investment in public transport.

        Where I work I’m in a sea of RWNJs who are degreed up to the eyeballs but at the end of the day are maths morons (“educated” but with no common sense) because they cannot for the life of them see or even begin to understand the destruction that right’s agendas cause to people and the environment.

        Case in point this week at work with a woman ten years younger than me with all the trappings of the supposed good life: hubby with good paying job, she with a well-paid freelance job as well as the income from where I work, two flash cars in the garage of the under ten year old home (brick and tile of course) and all the accoutrements, two kids who do lots of high-priced extra-curricular activities etc and who I know will weep and gnash her teeth when the house of cards comes crashing down with our imploding economy. This is a fairly intelligent person but she is so politically unaware I almost feel bitchy when I have to remind her of things she seems to forget all the time.

        For example, she believes that the unemployment in NZ and the current economic woes were caused by Labour when in fact it hadn’t been for the very conservative financial stewardship of Michael Cullen who wouldn’t allow ridiculous tax cuts we’d be in a worse state then Greece, a fact that she eventually conceded. When I said that the UK was a basket case because they had spent their golden egg of North Sea oil and were now importers of the black stuff and vulnerable because of PO I’m sure she had made a mental note to have me put on a list somewhere. She was also against Helen Clark because she thought she promoted the nanny state but after the earthquake recently with legislation enacted that virtually allows rule by decree and is more nanny than Helen could ever be how can she have been so naïve as to miss this?

        I think Helen was much maligned because she has a formidable intellect, was no Palinesque beauty queen and cared about people on Struggle Street and actually did something about it. I was saddened when Helen didn’t get a fourth term and now we have this completely venal and colourless ex-money trader who is driving the country and poor to the wall and whose default response is to smile and wave as he has no backbone.

        • millsy 2.3.1.1

          I always find the worse ones are the ones that pulled themselves up from poverty only to turn their back on their roots.

          Rather like Paula Bennett, who got her 2% housing corp loan, DPB, Family Benefit and award wages.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.3.1.1.1

            And don’t forget Jonkey who got massive state subsidies in housing and education. All of which he seems now to be removing as fast as possible to give tax cuts to himself and his rich mates.

          • M 2.3.1.1.2

            Yes millsy, she should hang her head in shame but like the jackal she is she doesn’t have the capacity to feel it – she’s too busy living off the the fat of her new gentrified life.

          • Richard 2.3.1.1.3

            I always find the worse ones are the ones that pulled themselves up from poverty…

            Me too.

            Welcome to rule by the vulgar.

        • bbfloyd 2.3.1.2

          Well said M. I doff my hat to you.

  3. Warren Buffett 80 year old exploiter is so confident of his class that he can say:
    “There’s class warfare, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”
    Any of the RWNJs here have a track record one tenth that of Buffett? Not only their deep pockets but their brain sockets?

  4. SHG 4

    NZ doesn’t have an upper class.

    • if you take class to refer to distinct social groups with enduring differences in power, then of course we do.
      your willing blindness doesn’t make their existence any less real 😆

      • SHG 4.1.1

        The video linked was a commentary on the English and European class system, which NZ just doesn’t have. NZ does not have an upper class. There are some very rich and influential people, yes, but their influence is a result of their wealth. If your influence is a result of your wealth, a European would describe you as middle class – because being a member of the aristocracy has nothing to do with having money.

        Put it this way: if people would think less of you if you lost everything you owned and ended up without a penny to your name, then you’re not upper class.

        • mcflock 4.1.1.1

          Assuming your analysis is correct, would you prefer the term “stratospheric middle class”?

    • bbfloyd 4.2

      SHG..you’ve left your sleeping mask on too long grasshopper.

    • No, NZ has a professional political class, on both sides of the divide. Brought up through universities, nurtured on the one side in unions and on the other in jobs-for-the-boys-and-girls professional firms for a few years and on both sides in Ministerial and party offices, then parachuted into safe seats and/or high list places.

      People with no idea what it’s like to be a worker or to own a small business; to be answerable to an unreasonable boss or the voracious tax man; to stand or fall on your ability and not your connections.

      Put that class into the Cleese role – including it’s utter contempt and feelings of superiority toward the middle and working class – and you’ve got NZ, circa 2010.

    • Vicky32 4.4

      Of course it jolly well does! (I remember in the 1990s, when I was on the DPB, talking to a woman also on the DPB, whose background was ‘better’ than mine – and she sighed, literally and said “don’t you just long to get back in to the middle classes?” When I recovered from laughing I said to her “No, I never was in the middle classes, how could I ever get back there?)
      Then a few years later, I took my son to a sunday school/pre-school play group, and got snubbed by a particular woman, who followed me home a few years after that, from the school her kids attended with mine – to apologise… She had failed to realise that any married woman is only “one husband away from welfare” as the Americans say, and was now on the DPB. The rapid descent from upper class to state paid whore (as a NAT polly of the time put it), had shocked her to the core!
      She was a good woman, her apology for her previous attitude to me was wholly sincere. Pity it took her husband leaving her for his secretary, to make her realise we DPB mums were not all lower class prosties!
      Deb

      • prism 4.4.1

        Reading that Deb it sounds like the Fay Weldon book The Heart of the Country. That book was about woman happily being lower upper class in Brit, and her husband runs off with a beauty queen, empties out the bank accounts and the so and so also swipes everything from her jewellery box. The kids have to go to a state school, she loses car house and has to walk down country lanes getting splashed by beamers instead of driving in them. The children can’t stand it and go back to Dad and his new woman and the lovely money he’s got. She remains low class and finds some gold there.

        • Vicky32 4.4.1.1

          Yes, that’s exactly the situation! The woman I am speaking of got thoroughly shafted, and was very hurt and surprised…
          I have even worse stories, sadly, all true. Women who are ex-wives, even DPB women are in my experience, far more the victims than the villains! As far as I know, this woman’s children stayed with her – well, at this time, they were very young!

          • prism 4.4.1.1.1

            Vicky 32
            “She had failed to realise that any married woman is only “one husband away from welfare” as the Americans say, and was now on the DPB.”

            True and that is why it is important for women to get training and keep up with work skills. Going on the DPB immediately sends you down a peg, even if you have gone through the class rise thing and gone to uni and got a good job. If you have to step out of the job and look after children, or your care arrangements break down it is back to reliance on DPB. Your past experience and work skills will assist with looking for a better part-time job but if WINZ get tough on work requirements, then you will have to take anything that is vaguely suitable.

            There is no class respect or kudos for being a parent, the upper classes may even escape the whole rigmarole by sending their children to boarding school. Let the school deal with their daily nurturing.

            • Vicky32 4.4.1.1.1.1

              That’s all true – but even so, it is my strong belief that women ought to be allowed to be at home with their kids when those kids are young! That woman had 6 year old twin girls and a baby son, I had a 6 year old son… It’s even more important for little kids to have their mum at home when she is their only parent..
              My ex happily ignored us all my son’s life. I worked when he was 6 and 7, and gave it up when I saw how it upset them, that the middle-class kiddies had mum there on sports day, and *his* mum was at work…
              How hard I had to try to get a job after being on the DPB years later, was another story. I had a woman at an employment agency opine that I must fill in the gaps in my CV, and that looking after children would be taken as a cover for a prison sentence, as ‘no one’ stays home with children these days (that was 2004).
              I often think we women can’t win for losing!

              • Bill

                Funny how the DPB mother is chastised and viewed with suspicion while the DPB father is considered heroic and deserving of whatever good things come his way, innit?

                I’d suspect that a DPB father who went to a job interview would be far more likely to get the job (with flexible arrangements that aided and abetted his child caring thrown in), than would a DPB mother.

                ‘Course, I’ve no evidence that that’s the case. Just that living in a patriarchy where males (or male mind sets) tend to dominate the coordinator or managerial class…and bearing in mind that many tend to empathise more with people who in some way remind them of themselves or possible selves…

                • Vicky32

                  Bill, I agree with you absolutely! Back in the 1980s, in Welly, I was visiting my sister, who had a daughter AJ, and AJ’s best friend was called Renee, they were both 4 or 5 at the time. Renee’s father was a newly-become solo Daddy. He had the house, he had the kids (including his wife’s children by her previous husband, and he had a parade of housewives including my sister, taking him casseroles and giving him free baby-sitting practically 24-7 if he required it. Renee’s mother had “walked out” I was told – and I warned my sister to be a bit more wary about believing what the guy said… (He had the same name as my ex who had walked out on me a year before, coincidentally.) Well, the story developed that Margaret, Renee’s mother, had cancer – and had with Ross’ encouragement, left to go to Tauranga to live with her mum, temporarily – while having chemo. As soon as she had left, her husband had gone to court and claimed that she had left without warning, and got an ex parte order giving him the children, and the house to bring them up in! It wasn’t until then, when Margaret came back to find out that she was labelled a deserter and had lost her children, that the Desperate Housewives of Nappy Valley (including my sister) stopped feeding this man and his kids and looking after them for him! I saw all this from the domestic point of view but I have no doubt at all that you’re right – that the managerial classes were bending over backwards to help him – saying “poor guy, he isn’t a shiftless solo mother, he deserves our help”… 🙁

  5. comedy 5

    Another on the same meme.. fuck they were good.

  6. Nick C 6

    So there wasnt an upper class in the Soviet Union?

    • felix 6.1

      I assume you are trying to present the phrase “one of the pillars of capitalism” as if it contained some inherent inaccuracy.

      Do you also have a problem with the phrase “eggs, one of the ingredients of a cake“?

      After all, there are other foods which also contain eggs.

      • Nick C 6.1.1

        “I assume you are trying to present the phrase “one of the pillars of capitalism” as if it contained some inherent inaccuracy.”

        No

        Im saying that all economic systems contain inequality.

        • the sprout 6.1.1.1

          obviously nick, that would be a truism.
          some systems however, have more inequality than others.

        • millsy 6.1.1.2

          I actually agree with you Nick. There was inequality in the USSR. Party bosses would guzzle wine and caviar in their Crimean dachas while the regulars would queue for hours for a mouldy old loaf of bread.

          But I dont recall their been any homelessness or the likes in the USSR…

          • Richard 6.1.1.2.1

            Undoubtedly, there was homelessness of one sort or another in the USSR. And there was lots of things that were shitty for lots of people.

            So?

            The USSR is no great model for the Great Left Utopia. Aspects of it might be, but the totality was not a success. Aspects of modern capitalism are quite nice too.

          • RedLogix 6.1.1.2.2

            Oh dear the usual old misinformation…. actually for the average person in the USSR life was ok. At least by the 70’s most people had work, reasonable food, warm apartments, access to good health care and an excellent education system. This despite a wide-spread, endemic distrust of government and authorities.

            It should be remembered that the Russian people had never known any form of ‘social democratic tradition’. While much of the rest of Europe had undergone social revolutionary transformations of one sort or another, Russia even by 1918 was still locked into a feudal autocracy of the worst kind. The long overdue reaction swung the pendulum wildly and uncontrollably to the other extreme, into another form of totalitarian nightmare.

            By the 60’s however the worst of those days had receded. And while us Westerners might deplore the degree of political freedoms in the USSR, by the measure of the Russian history, the average person actually enjoyed an unprecedented security and prosperity. Still short of the wealth in a USA at the peak of it’s post-war supremacy, but not a lot different to that enjoyed in much of the rest of the First world, or even here in NZ at the time.

            Life in the Russian climate is always tough, but it had bred a remarkably resilient and interesting peoples… it’s not helpful to get locked into narrow ideas derived from decades of Western media misrepresenting them.

            • Richard 6.1.1.2.2.1

              Oh dear the usual old misinformation…. actually for the average person in the USSR life was ok.

              Sure. Although equally it was a bit shit for some people too.

              The point is that it doesn’t really matter one way or another. No one claims that we should be replicating the USSR.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      Of course there was – the USSR was state capitalist.

  7. Jum 7

    Now, can someone tell me where to find the link to the two Ronnies’ ballet skit?

  8. roger nome 9

    There’s also a lack of any class consciousness in popular media. You generally have to go to underground music for any mention of it. Here’s a goodun –

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    1 week ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    1 week ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    1 week ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • How plant-based meat is stretching New Zealand’s cultural and legal boundaries
    Samuel Becher, Victoria University of Wellington and Jessica C Lai, Victoria University of Wellington Earlier this year, the New Zealand-based pizza chain Hell Pizza offered a limited-edition “Burger Pizza”. Its customers weren’t told that the “meat” was plant-based. Some customers complained to the Commerce Commission, which enforces consumer law in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    1 week ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago

  • NZ to help fund fight against measles in the Pacific region
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced New Zealand will contribute NZ$1 million of funding towards the joint United Nations Fund for Children (UNICEF) and World Health Organisation (WHO) Pacific Regional Action Plan for Measles.   “Prevention through vaccination is the most effective way of avoiding illness and a costly health emergency. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • New Zealand remembers Sir Peter Snell
    New Zealand is today remembering one of our true sporting heroes, triple Olympic gold medal winner Sir Peter Snell. “He was a legend, here and around the world,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “Our thoughts are with Sir Peter’s wife Miki and their family.” “Sir Peter is recognised as New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • PM congratulates Boris Johnson on election victory
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory.  “New Zealand and the United Kingdom are close friends and despite our distance we are strongly connected by our history and people,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “I look forward to continuing to work with Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Building a platform for the future of rail
    The Government has released its long term vision for a sustainable 21st Century rail network that gets our cities moving, connects our regions and gets more freight off the roads.   Deputy Prime Minister and State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters said the Government is committed to rebuilding New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Prime Minister statement Whakaari White Island recovery operation
    I want to start by acknowledging the families who have experienced such grief and such loss since the extraordinary tragedy on Monday. Today was all about reuniting them with their loved ones. We've just come from the airport where many of them were gathered and in amongst what you can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • New Zealand medical specialists to provide further support to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further support for Samoa’s longer term needs as it continues to respond to a devastating measles epidemic. “Samoa’s health system has experienced massive strain in the wake of the measles epidemic. The volume of patients needing care during this outbreak, and the number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Discounted electric-bikes offered to public sector workers
    Discounted electric bikes will be offered up to public sector staff across the country as part of the Government’s work to reduce transport emissions and support healthier transport options.  Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter officially launched the new initiative at Wellington Hospital today.  “The Government has negotiated bulk-purchase ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Australia and New Zealand confirm joint bid for FIFA Women’s World Cup
    The Australian and New Zealand Governments today launch an historic joint bid to bring the FIFA Women’s World Cup to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. Australian Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck and New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson will announce the bold campaign, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • Blackwater gold mine gets PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) has approved a $15 million loan to help re-establish a gold mining operation at Blackwater Gold Mine, near Reefton, Rural Communities Minister and local MP Damien O’Connor announced at an event on the West Coast today. “This is great news for the Coast that could ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government provides more funding for major community wetland restoration project
    Restoration efforts for a significant wetland in the Hawke’s Bay are getting more support announced Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage. “Wetlands are vital to healthy landscapes and ecosystems. They function as nature’s ‘kidneys’, filtering and protecting water quality, acting as nature’s sponges after rain and are home to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Housing First to help Nelson Tasman homeless
    Nelson has today seen the launch of Housing First Nelson Tasman. Today’s launch marks the expansion of the Government’s homelessness programme, Housing First, to the top of the South Island. “Housing First is a proven programme that puts people who are experiencing homelessness and multiple, high and complex needs into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New funding to support Environment Centres working for sustainable local solutions
    New Government funding announced today will help communities make a difference in tackling environmental issues Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage announced in Hawkes Bay today. The Ministry for the Environment’s Community Environment Fund is dedicating $243,101 to growing the capacity and capability of the Environment Hubs Aotearoa’s (EHA) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government takes bite out of loan sharks
    The days of vulnerable consumers falling victim to loan sharks, truck shops and other predatory lenders are numbered, following the Credit Contracts Legislation Amendment Bill passing its third reading tonight. “Too many Kiwis are being given loans that are unaffordable and unsuitable, trapping them in debt and leaving their families ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand safer as Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders Bill) becomes law
    A Bill that prevents terrorism and supports the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas has passed its third reading, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill is a carefully targeted response to manage the risk posed by a small number of New Zealanders who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Foreign Minister and Pacific Peoples Minister to visit Samoa
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Samoa on Friday, where New Zealand medical teams are helping Samoa respond to an outbreak of measles. “New Zealand has been working closely with the Government of Samoa and offering our assistance from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Pastoral Care Code will support tertiary students in 2020
    The Government has changed the law to improve student safety and welfare in university halls of residence and other student accommodation. The Education (Pastoral Care) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this afternoon and details of an interim Code of Practice setting out the Government’s expectations of tertiary providers have also been released. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New infrastructure funding tool to build housing developments faster
    A new tool to help councils fund and finance infrastructure could mean some housing developments happen a decade earlier than currently planned, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. “This new tool, developed by the Government in partnership with industry and high-growth councils, will allow councils to access private debt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Vision to unite the primary sector launched today
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the release of a bold new vision for the country’s vital food and fibre sector. “I’m delighted that New Zealand’s major farmer and grower organisations are today supporting the Primary Sector Council’s vision – Fit for a Better World,” he said. “The international consumers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ congratulates PNG and Autonomous Bougainville Government on referendum
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has congratulated the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government for completing a well-conducted referendum on the future political status of Bougainville. “New Zealand supported the referendum process by providing technical advice through the New Zealand Electoral Commission and leading a Regional Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Next steps for Upper North Island logistics
    In light of Cabinet’s position that freight operations on prime land in downtown Auckland are no longer viable, the Government will now embark on a short work programme to enable decision-making in the first half of next year, Associate Transport Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones is today releasing the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter has received the report back from a surgical mesh restorative justice process undertaken by Victoria University. The process heard stories, either in person or online submission, from more than 600 people affected by surgical mesh. “The report made for heart-breaking and confronting reading,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
    The Government is looking to turn around the long-term challenges of criminal justice by taking a new approach to break the cycle of offending to ensure there are fewer victims of crime. Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
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    3 days ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago