Andrew Little’s State of the Nation Speech

Written By: - Date published: 2:30 pm, January 30th, 2016 - 240 comments
Categories: Andrew Little, labour - Tags:



This Sunday at 2pm in Auckland, I’ll be delivering my State of the Nation speech.

I’m announcing an exciting new initiative that will make a huge difference to New Zealanders and will play a major role in rebuilding the Kiwi Dream.

During the speech, my team will be providing updates through Facebook and Twitter — and you can watch a live stream on my Facebook page. Make sure that you like us on Facebook (here and here) and follow us on Twitter (here and here) to get the latest.

I’m really looking forward to sharing our vision with you.

Andrew Little
Labour Leader
P.S. If you’re in Auckland and want to come along to the speech at Albert Park, click here to RSVP.

Update: because of possible bad weather the speech will start at 1 pm. Bring an umbrella!

240 comments on “Andrew Little’s State of the Nation Speech”

  1. Colonial Viper 1

    Labour loyalists said Andrew Little made a great cracker of a speech last year in Palmerston North. The best speech from a Labour Leader in a very long time, some said. Hasn’t changed a thing though, has it.

    He’s even put himself on record in the last day or so that Labour is a strong supporter of “free trade”, always has been and always will be.

    This from a very senior person in the union movement, someone old enough to have seen NZ industry decimated in the 1980s and 1990s.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      Yes, if only he had more experience of reading zerohedge 🙄

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.1

        Hmmmm. It might have sped up his (and your) education:

        – Why the TPP is not about free trade, but about centralising power amongst a small group of elites

        – Julian Assange and wikileaks: the major source of leaks on the actual contents of the TPP

        – Almost half a million mostly working class American jobs could be lost due to TPP

        – How TPP secrecy was used by the ruling establishment even against their own advisors

        – The TPP explained in cartoons for the lay person.

        – How corporations bought US Senators to fast track the TPP

        – How Big Pharma is using the TPP to boost sales, prices, and profits

        Zero Hedge is very much a tongue in cheek, non mainstream site. One that you can learn much from, while keeping a skeptical mind and a large pinch of salt on hand.

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.2

        Then there were articles like this from RT:

        The secretly negotiated trade deal has been widely opposed by industry professionals and activists in many countries, as it could “empower big pharmaceutical firms to command higher reimbursement rates in the United States and abroad, at the expense of consumers,”…

        The leaked “Annex on transparency and procedural fairness for pharmaceutical products and medical devices” is dated from December 2014, with the draft being restricted from release for four years after the passage of the TPP into law…

        “I think it’s a shame that the annex is still being considered at all for the TPP,” Deborah Gleeson, a lecturer at the School of Psychology and Public Health at La Trobe University in Australia told the New York Times, adding it “was very clear to everyone except the US” that the proposal is not about transparency, but rather over a “decision-making processes around pricing…

        “United States trade negotiators have aggressively pushed for provisions favoring multinational pharmaceutical manufacturers at the expense of national governments and public healthcare systems,” the Sydney Morning Herald wrote…

        The group says president Obama’s administration has been “acting at the behest of pharmaceutical companies,” and the secret negotiations it has been holding within the partnership might affect Medicare, limiting “Congress’ ability to enact policy reforms that would reduce prescription drug costs for Americans.”

        • One Anonymous Bloke


          No, I’m not explaining it to you.

          • Colonial Viper

            Good. I don’t give a shit for your explaining.

            Meanwhile, if Little had read Zero Hedge he wouldn’t be more than a year late turning up belatedly and reluctantly to the anti-TPPA party.

            • One Anonymous Bloke


              Perhaps he has time to read credible sources.

            • Pete

              CV if it’s such a bad agreement can you please explain why so many other former Labour Leaders such as Mike Moore, Helen Clark, Phil Goff and David Sheerer have voiced their support of it with Helen Clark going so far as saying it would be Unthinkable for NZ to be left out?

              • Chooky

                that is a misrepresentaion of what Helen Clark said ….she said words to the effect if it was a “good trade deal” it should be signed

                …TPPA is patently NOT a GOOD TRADE deal…it is not a trade deal at all !

                …it is a corporate takeover which compromises New Zealand democracy and sovereignty….and economic independence…( read 1.1.1 above)

                • Pete

                  Chooky>”that is a misrepresentaion of what Helen Clark said ….she said words to the effect if it was a “good trade deal” it should be signed”

                  That’s not true Chooky. What the Former MP of Mt Albert, Former Labour Leader and New Zealand Prime Minister said was: “What always haunts one as the New Zealand Prime Minister is ‘will there be a series of trade blocs you’re not part of?’. Because that’s unthinkable for New Zealand, an exporter and small trading nation. So of course New Zealand has to be in on the action with the TPP and go for the very best deal it can.”

                  There has been a lot of suggestion by those opposed to the TPPA that this isn’t what she said or something else was meant however despite over 3 months passing since she made the statement she has neither denied or clarified further (unless of course you can direct me to to a creditable source which states otherwise in which case I apologise and withdraw 🙂 ).

              • Because those leaders are just as right wing as Nationsl when it comes to economics.

                • Pete

                  Black kitten that reads very much as a “your either with us or against us” type statement.

                  If we take Helen Clark for example she has been the finest Labour PM for at least the last 20-30 years however now because she has taken an differing view on this agreement she has been described as economically right wing or mis quoted etc.

                  Can we not suggest that Little is wrong on this and as we’re seeing from the recent reports this feeling is also felt by a number of othe Labour Members.

                  All in all Little is making the party appear fractured and anti business. Where he could be showing NZ his ability to show strong leadership.

                  • Don't worry. Be happy

                    You can take strong leadership and shove it. What about freedon and people power and democracy? Strong leaders…bullshit. A strong educated democratically empowered population demanding that their government listens to them and not multi millionaires/nationals/funders that is what this battered little country needs and deserves. Instead we get spies and lies.

  2. fisiani 2

    I wonder if he will give an honest costing for the free tertiary education bribe he has been told by Grant Robertson will make 200,000 National voters switch to Labour. In other words he believes that students, their parents and grandparents votes can be purchased using the increased taxes of every plumber, taxi driver , electrician and hair dresser et al in the country. Robertson really has a low opinion of the average voter and thinks he knows the price of their vote. Of course he will try to spin it differently but it’s just another bribe.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1

      Meanwhile, in the real world…

      …domestic and international undergraduate students at public universities in Germany are able to study in Germany for free…

      The National Party is far too shit to be competent enough to do anything like this.

      Look! A parrot!

    • cogito 2.2

      Free tertiary education would be a fantastic investment in our future.

      It would also be good if there was a policy to write off accumulated interest on student loans for those living overseas, on condition that they return to NZ and work in NZ for a specified period.

    • Trey 2.3

      Just another bribe……… tax cuts for the rich given by dishonest John that put the country billions of dollars in debt. Or just another bribe…….like sheep and abattoir deals for Saudi businessmen?

    • Gangnam Style 2.4

      “using the increased taxes of every plumber, taxi driver , electrician and hair dresser…” you forgot “paperboy”.

    • millsy 2.5

      Because restricting access to a tertiary education to the rich and those lucky enough to get a scholarship is a good thing, right?

      • fisiani 2.5.1

        Because paying the fees of the rich who could afford to pay is economic madness.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          There’s a social value to it too. I daresay that’s of little consequence to you.

          • fisiani

            there’s a bribe value.
            I would however support a scholarship system whereby no one who is capable of a degree is prevented from achieving it due to finance. Pass your exams get your fees refunded.
            Simply offering a $20,000 bribe to all would attract many more to enter tertiary but many would be doomed to fail unless standards were lowered and devalued. Electoral cannon fodder collateral for Robertson.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Meanwhile, in the real world, you are plucking assertions out of your arse. How lowered and devalued are Germany’s standards?

              Oh noes, they aren’t devalued at all! In fact they’re better than yours, and you lack the competence to even notice it. 😆

            • Tricledrown

              Fishy the US economies faltering has been caused by a huge shortage of graduates especially post graduates which all govt funding has been stopped by right wing govt.
              Investing in Education brings in more money to the govt over the long term.
              Shot sighted right winger.

            • millsy

              Standards were lowered and devalued when the 1990-99 National government brought in NZQA Units, and allowed anyone to set up their own school, get accredication and cash in on the student loan scheme. You could assemble any qualification using all these units and just tick people off. Most of these certificates arent even worth the paper they are written on.

              And a lot of hairdressers, plumbers, etc you type off would have student loans as well, seeing as trade training was kicked back to the polytechs by your beloved National Party.

            • Doogs

              Here’s the thing – and very few, if any, people in power understand it.

              Tertiary education is just that. It’s a third tier of learning, coming after the first (primary) and the second (secondary). Each successive level of learning relies entirely on the integrity and soundness of the one before. So any shortcomings of a former are magnified and expanded in the successive one.

              Sounds complex? Not really. Let me explain with examples.

              First, and even before primary, there is pre-school education. The wonderful world of ECE (Early Childhood Education), where there is a golden opportunity to guide little minds into open thinking and to develop in them sensible and tolerant ways of interacting socially. What happens – govt funding cuts, teacher skill levels lowered, adult/child ratios increased, corporates allowed to run centres for profit.

              Second, there’s the cynical manipulation of primary education into easily managed packages to show unreal and entirely false levels of “progress”. Inherent in the system is naming and shaming of schools for perceived “failure”, when in fact all they are “failing to do” is live up to a series of artificial standards imposed on them by govt controlled wallies in a corrupt MOE so that figures can be manipulated to show which schools are “good” and which are “bad”. The so called “bad” schools can then be vilified, closed down and used for manure to sprout a charter school, which statistically, world wide, will do no better and most likely worse than the closed state school it replaces. This can be achieved more quickly by denying the previous state school much-needed funding to help failing students to achieve. Here’s the process – school has problem students, school needs funding for specialist programmes, govt refuses to help, school struggles and “fails”, govt says ‘look a failing school!’, school closes, charter school springs up. That’s without me saying anything about the abominable National Standards which box and pigeon hole children in a way that never works.

              Third, the children move on, ill-prepared, to a secondary school which puts them through the meat grinder of NCEA. Of course, there are the wonderful colleges of distinction which push their superior students through the much more rigorous Cambridge levels, which will prepare mummy and daddy’s little darling for a cruise through Uni. They will have a student loan, of course, but daddy’s money will soon help out in one way or another.

              Finally there is the tertiary scarecrow, standing alone in a field of ignorance, where people going into daddy’s business, or someone else business, or the government’s business, or accountancy (need bean counters), or law, or . . . We can see what is happening, especially in pseudo-universities who are dumbing themselves down by pouring resources into courses directed specifically at the commercial world, and shedding art and culture courses which widen the true intelligence of a community. These programmes teach where we have been and where we are. The plastic commerce ones just teach where we are going, and how fast!

              When the powers above have a real handle on what education truly is, then we may begin to have a society that functions, but . . . wait a minute . . . they do, don’t they. This is the plan! Oh my god, they want to keep us dumbed down. They want compliant voters who see nothing but the big con. Yes, of course, how foolish of me!

              Maybe I’ll . . . . .

        • cogito

          Increase income tax for the rich. 40% for earnings over $100k, 60% over $500k and 70% over $1M. They wouldn’t even notice it.

          • fisiani

            Of course they wouldn’t notice it. They would not even be here!! Currently the top 10% of earners pay 70% of tax. You would have them pay 85%. We would lose every high earner and become a basket case like every other communist nation.

            • millsy

              But we would have no one on the streets, no infant mortality and high literacy rates. Communist countries had the highest standard of living in the world.

              • fisiani

                Come on.. you made made me spill my coffee with laughter!!

                • millsy

                  Its true.TBH I cannot understand why people flee from Cuba (a country that has abortion on demand and free universal health care) to the US (a country where u cannot get an abortion and you are expected to die if you cannot afford health insurance).

            • weka

              fisi, areyou saying that really rich people pay more than this?

              Tax rates

              New Zealand’s top personal tax rate is 33% for income over NZ$70,000. At the other end of the scale, the tax rate is 10.5% on income up to $14,000. For full details, see ‘New Zealand tax at a glance’ below.

              Companies and corporates are taxed at a flat rate of 28%.

              Any prospect of a comprehensive capital gains or land tax has been ruled out by the current Government led by the National party.

              New Zealand also has a tax on consumption called Goods and Services Tax (GST). It’s a flat rate tax, currently 15%, that is added to almost all purchases. However, you don’t pay GST on residential rents and financial services. Businesses can recover the GST they pay as an input cost.

              A flat rate GST is simpler than the systems used in many other countries where similar taxes are applied at confusingly different levels for different products and services.


              In New Zealand, the income is taxed by the amount that falls within each tax bracket. For example, persons who earn $70,000 will pay only 30% on the amount that falls between $48,001 and $70,000 rather than paying on the full $70,000. Consequently, the corresponding income tax for that specific income will accumulate to $14,020— which comes to an overall effective tax rate of 20.02% of the entire amount.


              • fisiani

                Of course I am.
                let me quote you the Finance Minister in QT
                Hon BILL ENGLISH: Our tax and transfer system is highly redistributive, and the number of people paying income tax is surprisingly small. The lowest-income 43 percent of households currently receive more in income support than they pay in income tax. The 1.3 million households with incomes under $110,000 a year collectively pay no net tax—that is, their total income support payments match their combined income tax. The top 10 percent of households contribute over 70 percent of income tax, net of transfers—over 70 percent of income tax, net of transfers. This system is highly redistributive and we believe it is fair.

                At what point would it be unfair? 80%,90% or 95%
                At what point would they simply leave?
                I despair of the economic illiteracy of the Greens in particular.

                • weka

                  Bill English vs Danyl Mclauchlin and Rob Salmond, I know which one I think is full of shit. Honestly fisi, do you really expect people to take Bill English at his word when the Questions are coming from another National MP and in the same week that Farrar is running the same lines on his blog?



                  • fisiani

                    You cannot seriously claim that Bill English would lie in Parliament. His answer was not an off the cuff answer but a prepared one.

                    • weka

                      National routinely mislead inside of Parliament and outside.

                      Your denial or whatever it is is not surprising though. Bet you didn’t read the links and look at that actual evidence.

                    • alwyn

                      Lying again about National Weka.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Pretty much everything Bill says about his economic performance is a lie.

                    • AB

                      No of course not – someone who claimed $900/week in allowances maintaining he lived in Dipton even though his wife worked in Wellington and his children went to (private) school in Wellington is above reproach and could never tell a lie, or bend the truth, or have butter melt on any part of his saintly person.
                      Beloved Bill – redistributing wealth upwards is God’s work after all.

                • cogito


                  “Our tax and transfer system is highly redistributive”.

                  Funny how in this highly redistributive system the rich are becoming richer, isn’t it…..

                  From the Herald:
                  “Nonetheless, totalling up the individual fortunes of those on the list shows that this elite of 184 earners now totals $55 billion – up $3.8 billion (or 7.4 per cent) from last year.”
                  “Rashbrooke says that the “wealthiest one percent of people now own 17 percent of all wealth in New Zealand. But… the poorest half (50 percent) of the country own just 5 percent” “.

                  Plenty of opportunity for Robin Hood to make a come back.

                • Korero Pono


                  A significant number of the top income earners do not pay their fair share of tax. Tax evasion is rife. Interestingly enough when the TWG suggested closing the loop holes, what did the Natzis do? Nothing.


                  Bill English is not a reliable source when it comes to discussing income distribution, the information he has provided is distorted and does not accurately reflect the real situation. Some of the wealthiest New Zealanders are dipping their fingers into Working for Families, when they clearly don’t need it but do so because the loop holes allow them to. These same families hide income by filtering through various companies, trusts, partnerships etc – similar tactics are used to reduce child support liabilities (it is revolting seeing the wealthy take advantage of honest tax payers – those on the lowest incomes.




                  Those on the lowest incomes pay more tax per $ earned than the wealthy do. GST falls “disproportionately on low income families” (Rashbrooke, 2013).

                  Rashbrooke, M. (2013). Inequality and New Zealand. In M. Rashbrooke (Ed.), Inequality. A New Zealand Crisis, Wellington: Bridget Williams Books

                  • cogito

                    Bill English used to be one of the few better Nats, who seemed to distance himself a bit from Key’s lying antics but as time has gone on he seems to have sadly lost any scruples.

                • AB

                  Shocking that income inequality has got so bad that so many people earn so little that they don’t pay any income tax! Eh Fisi, I’m sure you agree?
                  Of course they still pay GST and other assorted sales taxes.

            • Macro

              We would lose every high earner

              Yeah! Well good riddance to them – the greedy buggers.
              Maybe you could lead the charge?

              • fisiani

                Just think about it for a moment
                If the top 10% of earners left they would take over 70% of the current tax with them. Their GST contribution would be nil.
                The current tax take does not cover costs and so we borrow.
                How would there be money to pay teachers, doctors, nurses and civil servants?
                No wonder there will probably never be another Labour government in New Zealand.

                • stever

                  So where in the world would they go? Somewhere with a lower tax I guess. But NZ has one of the lowest taxation levels in the world! So their choices would be few.

                  • fisiani

                    cogito wants to charge up to 70% tax.
                    so they could go almost anywhere and pay less tax.
                    alternatively they could arrange to be a company but cogito would make company tax 70%.
                    Thus NZ would have no companies and no high earners. I cannot believe I am wasting my time explaining basic economics. The Left are always economically illiterate as history clearly shows.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Meanwhile, in the real world, the USA had top tax rates of over 90% in 1960, and had more millionaires and high income earners than anywhere else in the world.

                      That’s the problem with right wing nut jobs: nothing they say is connected to reality.

                      If there are problems with Cogito’s proposal, Fisiani is too busy telling us the sky is falling to notice them.

                    • cogito

                      I was responding to your comment which was:

                      “Because paying the fees of the rich who could afford to pay is economic madness” 2.5.1.

                      And I said they could pay more tax. Perfectly reasonable.

                    • stever

                      But in NZ we are starting from a very low base-rate of taxation. So, we could afford to raise it to say 45% for the highest rate and still be well within comparable nations. AND get all that extra income to re-build our society. AND people who earn a lot would still want to stay here.

                      So, it’s win-win surely?

                • cogito

                  “How would there be money to pay teachers, doctors, nurses and civil servants?”

                  LOL. Standard self-serving scare tactic response.

                  • alwyn

                    You are quite right cogito.
                    We would need any money to pay doctors at least because they would have ALL buggered off overseas. So would a lot of the other groups you list.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Just like they all left the USA in the ’60’s.

                      No, wait, that didn’t actually happen. Wingnuts: baseless drivel since forever.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Now, let’s imagine if baseless drivel had substance, and some sociopathic arsehole from the centre-right threatened capital flight against a democratically elected government.

                      The obvious solution is to replace them with hungrier investors: there’s still be business to do, markets to conquer, whether or not Alwyn’s borrowed fantasy vision comes true.

                      Who needs a bunch of blackmailing right wing trash dragging us into the gutter anyway?

                • Macro

                  “Their GST contribution would be nil.”
                  It practically is already!
                  Its the poor who can’t avoid GST dimwit, and 15% (remember JK saying he wouldn’t increase taxes? lol ahh he’s such a joker that guy!) of their income goes in GST.
                  The rich just pocket the money.

                  So if the greedy lot (including you I hope) exit the country. That just means there will be more to go around that’s 43% of the total income for the country for the highest paid 10%. Their income from here doesn’t need to go with them – in fact we can place restrictions on shifting money out of the country any time we like as we did in the past and – just like China does now.

                  • fisiani

                    The rich pay most of the GST is Fact.
                    Why repeat the lie that Honest John made such a claim. I’ve debunked that ad nauseam.
                    Do you really want us to be like North Korea?
                    I have wandered into an asylum.

          • TheBlackKitten

            Why do you want to tax wage earners more? What interests me is how do we get these multi national companies that make billions a year in profit to share it with the wage earner with better pay. Think corporations with their crony capilisim with director fees. Think how much their employees are getting per hour and how appalling that wage is in relation to basic living expenses.
            And why does a small business pay the same as a big business via company tax? It’s about time that our beloved politicians started looking at these issues instead of ignoring them and taking the easy lazy option by increasing taxes on wages earners. All you do with high tax on the wage earner is punish success. It’s not the surgeons, middle managers or tradesman that should be paying more, it’s the corporations who make millions of profit a year and their greedy share holders and directors.

        • Stuart Munro

          By no means – they need to learn social responsibility most of all.

    • AB 2.6

      But the children of said plumber, taxi driver etc. are much more likely to be able to get to university. And with a properly progressive income tax, when the benefits of university education lead to higher incomes, those children of the plumbers etc. will be funding the next generation into tertiary education.

      We used to have something like this (I benefited from it) and it worked very well. And we had it because someone was grown up enough to think about the whole of society over long time-frames. But then a bunch of neoliberal f***wits decided it was better if everyone thought selfishly just about themselves in the short-term and let everyone else go hang. And this unethical crap has colonised the minds of a whole generation, so we get execrable fools like Fisiani turning up.

      • linda 2.6.1

        a lot of these degrees in reality have no value and do the student no favours except putting them into debt

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Can you name one of the degrees with no value? Bob Jones says business administration type qualifications are a waste of time, and I’m picking you didn’t mean them.

          • maui

            There must be thousands of people in office jobs right now where their degree is of little value or meaningless in relation to what they’re currently doing. They may be performing a simple task in a complex process for a large multi-national company. There are tons of these unskilled jobs out there in offices that require a university degree to get into them. It really is a contrast to seeing an expert builder or digger driver who may be unqualified, but has been doing it for 20 years in action.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              I’m not aware that the function of a degree is to render one more useful to business owners: that strikes me as a narrow and dismal view of education.

      • Colonial Viper 2.6.2

        University educations are overhyped nowadays, too often leading to highly qualified very indebted supermarket shelf stackers.

        Further, universities – themselves an invention of a class riven 16th/17th century European tradition – have been totally bastardised and perform little of what we need of them today: to be a critic and conscience of society, to help solve some of society’s most pressing problems.

        Instead they keep churning out young people steeped in faulty orthodox economics and finance disciplines, as well as corporatised fields of knowledge like marketing and PR, all of which are net harmful to a society as we would wish to see it.

        • AB

          Agree CV – especially your last paragraph. But this I think is also an effect of breaking the old model of the 60’s and 70’s I described above.
          Once students become fee-paying ‘customers’, universities start to behave like businesses and offer a plethora of courses of doubtful academic pedigree. And once this starts to happen universities are also more easily colonised by business interests

      • alwyn 2.6.3

        You do realise, don’t you, that a lower percentage of low income students get into Scottish Universities than they do in England?

        Scotland abolished fees, England didn’t. But it is in England that the poor are better off. From the Economist we see that
        “Yet the abolition of fees has done surprisingly little to widen access to higher education. Indeed, since 2011 the proportion of students from state schools entering Scotland’s elite universities has fallen. And while the proportion of university students from non-professional backgrounds has risen by just 0.2 percentage points, to 26.8%, in England it has gone up from 30.9% to 33.1%.”

        Oh well. I don’t suppose you will read this and learn how wrong you are.

        • AB

          Bah! A very short-term study, since 2011. And in the current environment abolishing fees alone will not be a panacea – because there are other reasons restricting the opportunities of children from poorer households, especially growing inequality.

          • alwyn

            Yes of course. Lets keep the experiment going.
            Do you approve of charter schools continuing in New Zealand?
            After all, so far we have only the results of a very short term study and I’m sure you have come out calling for a longer study.
            Or have you?
            How long do you think is long enough for these studies? Please be consistent in your views.

            • AB

              Some things are so loony they are not worth conducting studies on.
              Would twice-weekly colonic-irrigation improve the IQs of one-legged South Island men who wear baggy jerseys?
              Indeed, possibly so!
              Let’s fund Alwyn to do a long-term study and patronise everyone along the way with bogus evidence

              • alwyn

                In other words you hadn’t thought about that.

                Clearly you are someone who makes your decisions on ideological grounds and ignores any evidence on the matter. Then when someone points out the inconsistency of your statements your only recourse is bluster.

                On the other hand perhaps you merely suffer from chronic constipation.

                • AB

                  The point is your “evidence” isn’t evidence. It’s cherry-picked fluff that supports your ideological position and I’m calling you out on it.
                  You suffer from the dishonesty you accuse me of – I believe it’s called transference or something like that.
                  And it’s sarcasm not bluster because I’m tired of your sanctimonious and entirely bogus tone that tries to emulate objectivity.

                    • AB

                      Ah – the sleep of righteous is it Alwyn? Serene and untroubled no doubt.

                    • alwyn

                      Of course it is the sleep of righteousness.
                      That is because I am one of that ilk.
                      Serene and untroubled? Well yes actually. I am also able to leap over tall buildings and move faster than a speeding bullet.
                      As Tennyson said
                      “My strength is as the strength of ten
                      Because my heart is pure.”

                      I understand the Labour Party supporters sleep like babies.
                      As John McLain put it. When a Labour Party member considers the quality of their leadership they say
                      “I’ve been sleeping like a baby ever since… I sleep two hours, wake up and cry”

        • Stuart Munro

          Been in England recently? It’s desperate.

          • alwyn

            Yes, actually. Although not in the last three months. Have things gone down hill since then? When I was there people seemed very cheerful.
            When were you last there?

    • DoublePlusGood 2.7

      “Free tertiary education bribe” – uh, you mean a public service that a number of countries in Western Europe consider essential because of the massive benefits derived for their societies.

    • savenz 2.8

      @Fisiani – Id prefer my tax dollars going to our future generation for education, not Saudi Abattoirs and Sky City Convention Centres. Likewise I’d prefer my tax dollars spent on public transport NOT Holiday Highways and 11 Northland bridges.

      Most importantly I do not want to poor petrol on the flames of inequality and climate change by signing TPPA!

      Even if TPPA is never signed or ratified, it will take away co operation and resources away from solving real world problems.

      Governments should not be propping up the Monsantos and Sercos and Hollywood and Big Pharma (now being openly traded by speculators), that already have too much money and power and are openly abusing it while crying poor and asking governments to give them more corporate welfare and benefits.

    • Chooky 2.9

      so fisiani ( @2)…you and your ilk are for the mediocre children of the wealthy getting a tertiary education!….but not New Zealand’s best and brightest youth getting a tertiary education because this jonkey Nact government has skilfully financially excluded them because their parents can not afford it!.

      … tertiary education in New Zealand is now for the poncy mediocre children of the wealthy…so they can strut around and preen their feathers and show their largesse…they fool no one

      ….free tertiary education is a right for New Zealand’s best and brightest …this will be a real vote winner for Labour!

      (….and it is affordable if we get our priorities sorted !…. especially considering the millions jonkey has wasted on his poncy vanity ‘change the flag’ project…and the huge failure of RED PEAK)

  3. slumbergod 3

    Will he be undoing the National policies that have made life hell for many of us at the bottom? No? Oh well, I guess he’ll be missing out on the support Labour used to get.

    • weka 3.1

      Who are you suggesting to vote for instead?

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        weka, a million Kiwi adults have already figured that one out. And more are reaching the same conclusion.

        • cogito

          Apathy – if that is what you are referring to – is not the answer and just plays into the hands of the current regime.

          • Colonial Viper

            you need to review what you understand by “apathy.” For a fair few of the “missing million” their decision not to vote is both considered and deliberate. Hardly “apathetic.”

            • Keith

              The missing million are simply psuedo votes for National, so not a waste at all really!.

            • DoublePlusGood

              And look how much change their considered decision to note vote has achieved!

              • Colonial Viper

                These comments leave me shaking my head in disbelief. The Opposition parties in Parliament are funded millions and millions and millions of dollars a year to do their job.

                If you want to blame someone for stupidity and incompetence in terms of the non-vote, blame those Opposition parties for failing to/refusing to reach the “missing million.”

                But don’t treat voters as stupid.

                • Keith

                  Non voters are not voters, they don’t exist and they almost don’t matter at all but they are gold for National. I think many don’t vote safe in that knowledge that their vote is always going to be a vote for National but without all that stress and sweat of getting off the couch.

                  • vto

                    The non-voters need to vote for the Vote Them Out Party, whereby every elected member refuses to participate and hence effectively cancels out a seat.

                    vote them out

        • weka

          [citation needed] for why people don’t vote. Go on, that’s not a hard one.

          Needless to say, if someone doesn’t vote as a way of reversing National’s policies, they’re not very smart are they. If someone doesn’t vote because they don’t have someone to represent them, that’s another thing, but IMO that’s not what slumbergod was referring to.

          • Lanthanide

            Yeah, not voting for anyone, because you believe Labour won’t repeal National’s policies, is a pretty stupid protest vote.

            • Colonial Viper

              Although I’m not writing off a million adult NZers as acting in a “pretty stupid” way. I think their actions may be as considered and as deliberate as those of many people who do vote.

              • weka

                No-one is writing off a million adult NZers as “pretty stupid”. You just made that up, utterly and completely. Which leaves me wondering if you genuinely are having trouble comprehending arguments at the moment, or if you are just being an arse again.

                “I think their actions may be as considered and as deliberate as those of many people who do vote.”

                Of course, which is why I suggested you cite why 1million people don’t vote. Because the reasons aren’t all what you are implying i.e. that Labour is useless. Which makes your argument either stupid or disingenuous or part of your apparent vendetta against Labour.

                • Colonial Viper

                  (1) Needless to say, if someone doesn’t vote as a way of reversing National’s policies, they’re not very smart are they.

                  (2) If you have a rationale for why not voting as a way of stopping National policies is something other than stupid

                  (3) No-one is writing off a million adult NZers as “pretty stupid”. You just made that up, utterly and completely.

                  All three quotes came from you.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    It’s pretty simple: all you have to do to get CV’s point is to fail the plain English meanings of what Weka’s saying.

                    Ignoring the word “if” in points 1 & 2 oughta do it.

                    All this, from ignoring the question: “who to vote for instead?”, going off on another ‘Labour didn’t select me’ worm eating spree, and then failing to provide any evidence that you know why people don’t vote.

                    There are surveys which attempt to answer the question,

                    Reason Percentage

                    Didn’t know enough about the candidates 31

                    Not interested 14

                    Forgot or left too late 24

                    Too busy 14.

                    And then we have Lusk’s indiscretions – apathy helps the right so they foster it.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Like I said, I don’t give a fuck about your explaining.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I’m explaining your pique to others, rather than trying to explain something to you. Didn’t you pick up on that?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Uh, my comment applied exactly the same.

                    • Visubversa

                      Yes, I remember some young woman at my work saying she did not vote because she did not know enough about the candidates. I asked her if her inability to use Google hindered he ability to do her job. She asked me what I meant by that. I replied that I had seen her spend half her lunch hour comparing shoe prices on line and that if she could do that for shoes she might want to buy, why could she not find out about the people she might vote for? It is not that they don’t know – it is that they don’t care.

                  • weka

                    1 million people (ish) don’t vote, for all sorts of reasons.

                    I said that the people who don’t vote as a way of stopping National’s policies are not very smart. I don’t believe that 1 million NZers don’t vote for that reason. Do you?

                    And, because apparently it needs spelling out, what I meant is that not voting won’t stop National’s policies. If you believe not voting will stop National’s policies, perhaps you could explain how.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Really, this is just is just a circuitous way to come to the obvious:

                      Voting Labour is not going to repeal or reverse National’s policies.

                      Labour can’t even bring itself to say any more that it will repeal or get rid of National’s 90 day right to fire legislation because it is hoping to keep business on side, or that it will exit the TPPA because it is hoping to keep business on side, or that it will reverse National’s regressive GST increase because it is hoping to be able to keep income taxes on the middle class low, etc.

                      PS I am not contesting your point that not voting keeps National in power.

                    • weka

                      FFS CV, this whole subthread IS about how not voting keeps National in power. And now you want yet again to make this about how useless Labour are?


                      Voting Labour is not going to repeal or reverse National’s policies

                      Bullshit. Out and out lie. Not only are you not privy to Labour’s 2017 election manifesto, but their existing policies are sufficently different from National’s. And don’t come back with ‘oh I was just using hyberbole’. You are telling lies about Labour and the really shit thing about this is that in doing so you ARE encouraging people to not vote at all and thus reinforce your prediction of a NACT 4th term. May as well go write for Whale Oil.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      weka, I really find it heartening that you still put stock in things like “Labour’s manifesto” etc. as if they can be trusted not to flip flop on that like the retirement age, the TPPA, the CGT, NZ Power, the 90 day right to fire, so on and so forth.

                      They couldn’t even bring themselves to properly congratulate Jeremy Corbyn on his victory in the UK.

                      As for people who decide not to vote, well I empathise with them. I certainly don’t view them as stupid, etc.

                    • weka

                      weka, I really find it heartening that you still put stock in things like “Labour’s manifesto” etc. as if they can be trusted not to flip flop on that like the retirement age, the TPPA, the CGT, the 90 day right to fire, so on and so forth.

                      They couldn’t even bring themselves to properly congratulate Jeremy Corbyn on his victory in the UK.

                      Sure CV, but we already know that Labour isn’t one thing but two. Which adequately explains the things you just named as well as the recent changes.

                      Irrespective of that, you told a lie above, I called you on it and now you are shifting the goal posts to avoid that.

                      Here’s the lie in case you forgot,

                      “Voting Labour is not going to repeal or reverse National’s policies.”

                      As for people who decide not to vote, well I empathise with them. I certainly don’t view them as stupid, etc.”

                      I don’t either and I’ve explained this already quite sufficiently so stop lying about me by implication.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Of course, which is why I suggested you cite why 1million people don’t vote. Because the reasons aren’t all what you are implying i.e. that Labour is useless.

                  Yep, I agree. I’m not trying to say that’s why everyone in that 1M group doesn’t vote. I don’t know all their individual motivations.

                  But I’m fairly confident that half or more of them are former Labour supporters who today, will never vote for Labour again, cannot stomach voting for the Greens, and who will not vote for anyone else either. A few who might have been amongst their number have gone over to Winnie of course, but not many.

                  Hence I predict that Labour’s vote in 2017 will stagnate or decrease, Winston will get another bump up, and the Greens will stay within 1-2% of where they are.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Your confidence is worthless. For one thing I doubt its honesty.

                    Quite apart from Karen’s observations, you are now claiming to know what ~500,000 people think. Uh huh.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I’m pretty sure that I’m within the ballpark, +/- 100m.

                      Your confidence is worthless. For one thing I doubt its honesty.

                      I’m totally fine with that.

                  • weka

                    Yep, I agree. I’m not trying to say that’s why everyone in that 1M group doesn’t vote. I don’t know all their individual motivations.

                    It’s what you implied,

                    Slumbergod – Will he be undoing the National policies that have made life hell for many of us at the bottom? No? Oh well, I guess he’ll be missing out on the support Labour used to get.

                    Weka – Who are you suggesting to vote for instead?

                    CV – weka, a million Kiwi adults have already figured that one out. And more are reaching the same conclusion.

                    The implication from you is that 1 million non-voters don’t vote Labour because they won’t undo Nationals heinous policies (I shorthanded that to “Labour are useless” because that’s the message you are constantly pushing).

                    If I’m wrong, perhaps you can explain how else your comment should have been interpreted.

                    But I’m fairly confident that half or more of them are former Labour supporters who today, will never vote for Labour again, cannot stomach voting for the Greens, and who will not vote for anyone else either. A few who might have been amongst their number have gone over to Winnie of course, but not many.

                    Hence I predict that Labour’s vote in 2017 will stagnate or decrease, Winston will get another bump up, and the Greens will stay within 1-2% of where they are.

                    Yeah, but your confidence nothwithstanding, your opinions are being increasingly seen as tainted because of how much your Labour-hating is skewing what you say. This dog’s breakfast of a debate right now just reinforces that.

                    Meanwhile, here’s some actual research on why people in NZ don’t vote,


                    • Colonial Viper

                      It was hyperbole. I used the 1M have already figured that out to point the finger at the large group of non-voters.

                      The figure is probably more like 0.5M deliberately and consciously refuse to vote for the options on offer, and 0.5M seriously don’t care/are actually apathetic.

                    • weka

                      “It was hyperbole. I used the 1M have already figured that out to point the finger at the large group of non-voters.”

                      Yes, you did, but the conversation at that point was much more specific, and you used the hyperbole to misrepresent non-voters as people hating Labour. Which is one of the things people are getting sick of you doing.

                      “The figure is probably more like 0.5M deliberately and consciously refuse to vote for the options on offer, and 0.5M seriously don’t care/are actually apathetic.”

                      what’s that based on?

                      I’ll also just note that 500,000 not liking the options on offer is not teh same as 500,000 not voting Labour because Labour are useless.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      1. CV wants to be a politician – an elected member of Parliament.
                      2. This ambition has thus far been thwarted.

                      Pique is a perfectly natural response to such things. I suggest we see CV’s less sincere contributions in that light for the moment.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I want to be an MP??? LOL that was years ago, although not quite as far back as when I wanted to be an X-Wing pilot.

                    • weka

                      I think that crosses a line OAB and makes it personal. I’d rather the thread didn’t descend to that.

                  • millsy

                    For my part, Labour lost my vote when Little decided to chop NZ Power, leaving a lot of New Zealanders struggling to pay insanely high power bills, benefiting baby boomer shareholders (who benefited from low power prices back 30-40 years ago). New Zealand has been billed as the Saudi Arabia of water FFS and 80% of our power comes from hydro dams, so power should be cheap or, in certain cases, free. Gas rich Turkmenistan had cheap/free gas up until quite recently.

                    The likes of Libya, Turkmenistan, Saudi Arabia, Baathist Iraq, the UAE, Norway, etc made sure that the benefits of their natural resources flowed through the population, but it seems that NZ allows it to all be stuck at the top.

                    I am picking NZ Inc will probably be the next on the policy chopping block, which is even more of a shame.

                    I would never vote for the Greens, as, among other things, they tend to want childrens teeth to rot to indulge their tinfoil hat conspiracies, ie get rid of flouride.

                    The Internet Party is pretty much dead in the water, and I really aint too keen on MANA.

                    • weka

                      “I would never vote for the Greens, as, among other things, they tend to want childrens teeth to rot to indulge their tinfoil hat conspiracies, ie get rid of flouride.”

                      No, they don’t.


                    • Colonial Viper

                      Just do what other civilised nations do; use products with fluoride in them like fluoridated sale or toothpaste when you want exposure to fluoride, instead of justifying the mass medication of millions of people most of whom get zero benefit from the practice.

                    • millsy

                      Or if you do not wish to drink flouridated water you can buy bottled water or invest in a rainwater collection system. You can get one from Trademe for between $100-$1000 depending on the complexity.

                    • The Fairy Godmother

                      ??? a bit confused here. When was Andrew Little in government in a position to do such a thing?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      No, they don’t.

                      It’s really isn’t that hard to find press-releases by Sue Kedgeley on the issue. Try linking to the water policy rather than health and you’ll see what I mean.

                      I suspect Millsy is overstating the case, and pretending the Greens have nothing to say about fluoridation isn’t exactly accurate either.

                  • AmaKiwi

                    Why attack Colonial Viper?

                    If people with CV’s record of party activism are quitting, Labour should be worried. Worry is often expressed as anger.

                    Your anger/worry is noted. But until there are revolutionary changes, what’s left of your (Labour’s) activist base will continue to erode.

                    I stand with CV.

              • Lanthanide

                What weka said.

                • AmaKiwi

                  I am commenting on the tone of many of the comments/criticisms.

                  • weka

                    The reason he is being criticised is for his behaviour. Many of us here are also critical of Labour. When you talk of ‘your (Labour’s) activist base’, please bear in mind that we’re not all Labour. So this isn’t about criticising someone who is critical of Labour. It’s about the degree to which CV is misleading in his comments about Labour. From my perspective the degree to which he is undermining debate here on ts is also a problem. It’s tedious and more people have commented on it than just us here today.

                    btw, if you scroll upward directly above the comment you are replying to, and find the first reply button, that will keep your comments in the right sequence in the threads.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      It’s about the degree to which CV is misleading in his comments about Labour.

                      Bullshit, weka.

                      I am pointing out to all those people – like yourself – who are continuing to give Labour and Andrew Little the benefit of the doubt just because he finally, reluctantly, starts making a few of the right noises: that you can’t fucking trust them, and who cares how moving Andrew Little’s speech in Palmerston North was, or what he said about 4 out of 5 of Labour’s TPPA “bottom lines” being met just a couple of months ago, or what he is going to say tomorrow.

                      Labour is utterly divided and insincere in its positions, Little has no leverage in his own caucus, and he himself has said that Labour always has been and remains pro free-trade.

                    • weka

                      You’re certainly entitled to your opinions about Labour CV, and I will continue to ask for evidence when I think you are misleading or outright lying.

                      You’re not entitled to misrepresent my views and it’s interesting that one of the features of the past day or so is your continued misinterpretation of what I think. For instance, I don’t particularly trust Little and I’ve made at least one comment in this thread that demonstrates that. What you are mistaking for trust is lack of the same degree of hatred that you have for Labour. I don’t hate Labour, and the trust I have is for the potential to change. But even there I’m guessing you will simply be blinded to understanding what I mean, because I’m not having faith in Labour so much as I have skill in seeing where things have an effect. You condemn Labour for changing, I see the change as having an effect beyond mere Labour behaving the way we want.

                      Labour is utterly divided and insincere in its positions, Little has no leverage in his own caucus, and he himself has said that Labour always has been and remains pro free-trade.

                      Yeah, so you say. Others disagree with you (myself, I think that some in Labour are manipulative shits who should be fired, but I don’t believe the whole party is corrupt. If Little had no leverage in his caucus how did he come out against the TPPA?

                      The free trade comment is your own disingenuousness. FFS mate, Labour isn’t a left wing party. You can rail all you like against that, but they’re centre left and Little’s comments about free trade are entirely consistent with that irrespective of whether you or I like that.

                      All that just reminds me that you appear to have zero interest or ability to come up with alternatives. All I hear from you now is incessant negativity about Labour that borders on the pathological. I know you are better than this and I know you are smarter. I’d have less of a problem with the Labour-hatred, and probably even the disruption to ts, if you were doing something creative and proactive as well. But all you are doing currently is poisoning the well.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      FFS mate, Labour isn’t a left wing party. You can rail all you like against that, but they’re centre left and Little’s comments about free trade are entirely consistent with that

                      This is probably one root of our disagreement.

                      Labour are not even a “centre left” political party. Labour may be vanishingly left of National, but that definitely does not make it “centre left.”

                      Since the 1980s it has been a Right Wing, pro-neoliberal, pro-globalisation party which retains a few remnant vestiges of a historical social conscience.

                      That’s just my opinion.

                      As for misrepresenting your views – fine that’s your interpretation. But what I see you doing is putting stock and credibility in Little opening his mouth, at least enough to consider and take seriously what he has to say.

                      Whereas I don’t, not even one tiny bit.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Cheers, AmaKiwi.

          • Colonial Viper

            [citation needed] for why people don’t vote. Go on, that’s not a hard one.

            Nah, not wasting my time, sorry.

            Needless to say, if someone doesn’t vote as a way of reversing National’s policies, they’re not very smart are they.

            Sometimes I do think that Right Wing have a point when they say that the Left tends to be rather condescending and superior towards ordinary Kiwis.

            • weka

              More like wasting my time and other people interested in actual debate.

              “Sometimes I do think that Right Wing have a point when they say that the Left tends to be rather condescending and superior towards ordinary Kiwis.”

              Especially those lefties who use terms like ‘ordinary Kiwis’ 🙄 And especially when they use them reinforce RW memes.

              If you have a rationale for why not voting as a way of stopping National policies is something other than stupid, please do share (I can think of a couple of reasons). But I’m guessing that you’re really here to slag off Labour and when your ideas that come with that are challenged you have nothing to stand on.

              • Colonial Viper

                Seriously? You’re the one saying that non voters aren’t acting in a smart way, then you have the nerve to say that I’m the one being condescending???

                If you have a rationale for why not voting as a way of stopping National policies is something other than stupid, please do share

                They’re way ahead of you and me in that some non-voters have long figured out that Labour isn’t going to stop or reverse National policies.

                • weka

                  Comprehension fail. Go reread what I actually said and try again.

                • Paul

                  Not voting only means 3/6/9 years of National.
                  Or are you waking till things get so bad there’s civil unrest?

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    He’s too busy trying to digest those worms.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    I’m not advocating that people not vote. But I will say that unless people feel that a political party really deserves their vote, they should not give them their vote.

                    Or are you waking till things get so bad there’s civil unrest

                    The top socioeconomic quartile of NZ aren’t going to engage in “civil unrest” any time soon. National is very capable of keeping this sector of society on side.

                    The student activists and political activists of the 1980s who led the Springbok tour protests are now mostly greyed comfortable home owning middle class.

                    Both Labour and National have ensured the end of student activism with their uni fees and student loan schemes.

                    • weka

                      “I’m not advocating that people not vote. But I will say that unless people feel that a political party really deserves their vote, they should not give them their vote.”

                      I on the otherhand would vote Labour if I had to as a way of keeping National out of power. Not voting because you don’t have an ideal party just hands the election to Nact.

                      So what’s the strategy CV? If you think Labour and the Greens don’t deserve 500,000 people’s votes, what next?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Says he’s not advocating abstention. Advocates abstention. 🙄

                    • Jenny Kirk

                      ” The student activists and political activists of the 1980s who led the Springbok tour protests are now mostly greyed comfortable home owning middle class.”

                      This is a huge sweeping generalisation, CV.

                      Most of the activists of the 1980s (students or otherwise) that I know of, or hear of, are still actively involved in political participation in one way or another and not all of them are comfortable home owning middle class….. and even if they are, they are still active in politics of some sort.

                    • weka

                      “Says he’s not advocating abstention. Advocates abstention.”

                      roflnui. This thread was going to be clusterfuck pretty much from the first comment.

                      I’m getting to the point where I’m starting to feel sorry for the man (being the namby bamby liberal that I am).

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Me too. Worms taste terrible. Fisiani would just say he made the bad choice to eat them 😈

                    • weka

                      @Jenny, not to mention those who are now party of the underclass. CV, your bigotry is getting out of hand.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      OK you got me.

                      I actually believe that voters should not vote for parties that they do not think deserve their tick.

                      On the other hand I do not believe that people should not vote because they can’t be fucked lifting their pen.

                    • “The student activists and political activists of the 1980s who led the Springbok tour protests are now mostly greyed comfortable home owning middle class.”


                      did you protest? why?

                    • weka

                      OK you got me.

                      I actually believe that voters should not vote for parties that they do not think deserve their tick.

                      On the other hand I do not believe that people should not vote because they can’t be fucked lifting their pen.

                      Either of them end up with National in power. If there is no alternate strategy, your belief that voters should not vote for parties that they do no think deserve their tick make a mockery of most of your other politics including concern for the common man.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      A twenty year old protestor in 1981 is now roughly 55 years old. That’s what I meant by grey.

                      I was in primary school at the time and no, I did not march against the Springboks.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Either of them end up with National in power. If there is no alternate strategy, your belief that voters should not vote for parties that they do no think deserve their tick make a mockery of most of your other politics including concern for the common man.

                      It’s my belief that political parties should not expect votes that they do not deserve, and did not work to earn or keep.

                      That’s pretty reasonable, and highly democratic, I think.

                      Either of them end up with National in power.

                      It’s one reason I think that a National win in 2017 is certainly more than a 50/50 proposition.

                    • b waghorn

                      People who don’t vote get the government they deserve wouldn’t you think.?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Yes, that’s the old saying. So, what do people who do vote get?

                    • weka

                      It’s my belief that political parties should not expect votes that they do not deserve, and did not work to earn or keep.

                      That’s pretty reasonable, and highly democratic, I think.

                      Perhaps, but I’m not a political party and that’s not the same thing as how people decide to vote.

                      “Either of them end up with National in power.”

                      It’s one reason I think that a National win in 2017 is certainly more than a 50/50 proposition.

                      A proposition you appear to be promoting and endorsing.

                    • weka


                      “People who don’t vote get the government they deserve wouldn’t you think.?”

                      People who vote get the government that people who don’t vote deserve.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Labour is focussing on the middle class swing voter; they’ve given up on the “missing million” as being unreachable.

                      That’s their core strategy. It imbues every move they make.

                      If you want to criticise someone for supporting the continuance of the non-vote and hence National’s success, try them.

                    • weka

                      But you are are promoting it too CV. I’m quite happy to criticise whoever is responsible, including Labour and including you. I don’t see why Labour should be criticised and not you.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I don’t see why Labour should be criticised and not you.

                      Criticise me all you want on not helping the non-vote situation.

                      But the fact of the matter is that Labour gets millions and millions of tax payer dollars a year, as well as air time on the 6 o’clock news and front page news stories.

                      So maybe they could be doing far more about the non-vote situation than little ol’ me on The Standard, and should be held to account accordingly.

                • b waghorn

                  Well under democracy somewhere over 50% get what that deserve as well and the rest tough luck.

                  • weka

                    it doesn’t have to be that way, and it was the hope of MMP that we would move to better representation.

  4. One Two 4

    Andrew has a platform to directly educate the public about the devious and corrupt existence of corporations and industry. Many of these industry corporations will have directly authored texts of the TTP (x) agreements. All of them are contributing to the demise of humanity and the environment.


    * Banking / Finance / Insurance
    * Pharmaceutical / Biological / Technological
    * Chemical
    * Legal
    * Weapons Manufacturers (WAR)

    Andrew is aware of how these establishment systems and industry operates, and has a prime opportunity to propagate the message

    • Colonial Viper 4.1


      Little is not some kind of Jeremy Corbyn. Not by a country mile.

      He’s not going to do anything of the sort FFS; in the last 36 hours he’s already confirmed that Labour has been and will continue to be strong supporters of free trade.

      Feel free to point out

      • Paul 4.1.1

        Why don’t you vote Green or Mana?

        • Colonial Viper

          I have voted Mana previously. I won’t vote Greens because their culture and outlook aren’t a fit with me, although I enjoy helping Green Party activism and activists where I can.

          • weka

            Why do you vote based on personal gratification?

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              What makes you think the answer was sincere enough for you to be able to draw that conclusion?

              • weka

                I didn’t. I think there is something underneath what he said and I’d like him to be honest about it.

                • Jenny Kirk

                  Actually Weka – the “something underneath” what CV said is starting to sound a bit odd.
                  CV has been a member of the Labour Party – I do not know how long for. But he says he voted Mana in the past. How long did the Mana Party last ie when did it start up ? Its only been going for a few years.
                  Would this not have clashed with CV’s membership of the Labour Party ? This appears to be the oddity.
                  But I don’t know the dates so maybe I’m wrong.

                  • I think the word you’re looking for is hypocrisy, Jenny. Tat is still a LP member last I heard. His activism, such as it is, is entirely self promoting. His success rate in achieving change democratically within Labour is an astonishing zero percent, unless you count strengthening the position of the local MP he hates as a success.

                    The one time he was given any responsibility, he managed to dramatically lower both the electorate and party vote in his failed campaign. Worst. Candidate. Ever.

                    What it comes down to is that Tat doesn’t have the courage of his convictions. He won’t leave Labour because the alternative is having to do actual work. And forming and running your own obscure but pure party is hard work. He couldn’t even keep a small suburban branch in a strong Labour electorate alive, so he knows he doesn’t have what it takes.

                    Rather than contribute democratically, he’s much happier wallowing in his self loathing and being patted on the head from time to time by those who are blinded by their hatred of Labour or those who regard him, more accurately, as a useful idiot.

                    But as I’ve said before, isn’t it wonderful that the NZ Labour Party are tolerant of his shenanigans? I can’t think of any other organisation that would put up with his bollocks. We really are a broad church.

      • lprent 4.1.2

        I am a strong supporter of free trade. A lot of lefties are. Employment that has no real economic value like we wound up with in the 1960s, 70s, and early 80s us just a recipe for deferred pain. As we found out, just as Russia did and is doing again.

        Problem is that the TPPA is only vaguely free trade in bits. For NZ it is mainly a restraint of trade agreement – and a Damn expensive one

        • Colonial Viper

          Good for you lprent. I worked in the NZ high tech industry in the mid/late 1990s and we exported to dozens of countries around the world. We brought hundreds of millions of hard currency into NZ and as a recent graduate I made a good living.

          So free trade was great for the high tech firm I was working for, and it was great for my wallet and for my career progress.

          Problem is, while those conditions adjudicated for this particular firm I was employed by, it also adjudicated against many other sectors of the NZ economy, destroying plenty of other businesses, factories and working class jobs on the way.

          At the time I was winning from the deal, so it was easy to turn a blind eye when the costs went to someone else.

      • b waghorn 4.1.3

        I hope he’s no corbyn an body who buts a radical vegan in as shadow farming minister is fucking moronic.

        • weka

          Some vegans are capable of not projecting their values and beliefs on to everyone else. I think it’s unfortunate that many vegans we see and hear in public are the fundamentalist ones.

          That’s not a comment on the choice of Britain’s Labour shadow minister for farming, I don’t know what sort of vegan she is. If she’s the compassionate, non-fundie type, it could be good for the UK.

            • weka

              She said: “The world is not going to turn vegan because I am in post.

              “I have my own personal views on what I choose to eat, but I accept that we have a livestock industry in this country. What I want is for the industry to have the best welfare standards possible, to be sustainable as well as economically viable.”

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              So, she’ll be able to direct the UK Ministry of Mad Cows (or whatever it’s called) to pull it’s socks up? She’ll be able to ban schnitzel?

              Or she’ll be able to implement UKLP policy in accordance with the law?

              You reaction is a bit like me assuming that making Judith Collins Justice Minister would lead to fascist death squads.

              • weka

                I don’t think using Collins as an example helps your argument OAB.

                Plus you appear to be making some assumptions about what b’s reaction actually is. Why not ask them instead?

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Kerry McCarthy has about as much chance of banning meat as Judith Collins has of deputising Cameron Slater: they’re both required to constrain their ambitions.

                  B Waghorn’s “opinion” curiously matches right wing attack lines. Forgive me for noticing.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          I suppose to an authoritarian that’s a fearsome prospect. Personally, I daresay the minister would be required to follow UKLP policy, and act within the law, and crucially, wouldn’t be a Tory, enabled to do whatever the hell they want to by other Tories.

          • b waghorn

            Would you be OK with it if a radical homeopath was given the health portfolio.?
            Authoritarian I’ll have to go look that up.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Clearly, vegans are exactly the same as radical homeopaths. No, wait, perhaps they aren’t:

              “In terms of Labour party policy, promoting animal welfare is something we have always done as is promoting sustainable farming. I’m personally happy working with farmers.”

              Your intelligent considered zombie knee-jerk response failed to consider the actual views of the actual vegan involved? That would be tiresome.

              • b waghorn

                She may be happy to work with farmers but I wonder if farmers will want to work with someone who thinks that they and their customers are helpless addicts.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  I expect there’ll be some who’ll hate her for her gender, too, and fixing the harm Tories do is the whole point.

            • weka

              Your objection appears to be to the fundamentalism. A homeopath in the Health Portfolio would be no worse than medical fundamentalist (and before anyone goes ‘science is god’ try reading up on current MoH guidelines on dietary fat/cholesterol and how the science doesn’t support them).

              Likewise, an intelligent vegan as Minister of Farming would proabably improve animal welfare and teh environment (both of which are ultimately good for farming).

              • b waghorn

                My objection is that it shows a lack of understanding of human nature putting someone into a position that is setting them up to fail, not to mention giving the opposition an easy target.

                • weka

                  So is your objection to the person herself? Because I can’t see how putting someone competent in the position who is also vegan is setting them up to fail. He’s doing lots of things that people consider to be setting Labour up to fail. It doesn’t follow that they will.

                  • b waghorn

                    I think she would get stone walled in farming circles its not because she’s a woman or even a vegan . but when you starting position is that meat eating is comparable to smoking , really!!

                    • weka

                      I agree. The little bits I’ve seen suggest she’s not the smartest politician around. But I don’t know enough to say if she can learn.

            • cogito

              Nothing wrong with homeopathy. Besides, the best homeopaths are also registered doctors. My mother used to go to Harley Street to see one. (Harley Street in London, btw 🙂 ).

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Dr Fisher stated that the process of “shaking is important” but was unable to say how much shaking was required. He said “that has not been fully investigated” but did tell us that “You have to shake it vigorously […] if you just stir it gently, it does not work”.

                I’m totally convinced by that. Aren’t you?

                • weka

                  If I find a single quote that implies science is an arse can we write that off as well?

                  Would you mind putting up a link for your quote? I’d like to see it in context.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    It’s from “Dr.” Fisher’s testimony to the UK Parliamentary Science and Technology Committee. – pdf:


                    • weka

                      Interesting document. It reminds me of those white dude anthropological accounts from colonial times where one can see the huge cultural divide and the anthropologist simply not understanding things outside of his framework (not that all anthropoligists were like that). And likewise the native peoples were struggling to explain things in the language of the colonisers or even recognise the disparity.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Samuel Hahneman as witch-doctor. A flawed hypothesis at best.

                    • weka

                      Was Hahneman making a submission from his grave? I think you missed the point.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      All I did was quote the high priest in his own words: don’t blame me if he sounds so unconvincing you’re reduced to explaining that away as some sort of language barrier.

                    • weka

                      That’s weak. It’s not a language barrier so much as one side is culturally incompetent.

                      Context is irrelevant? That just takes us back to my original question, if I find a single quote that implies science is an arse can we write that off as well?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      one side is culturally incompetent.

                      Oh indeed they are: for one thing, they still find Bellman arguments compelling.

                      No, Weka, context is relevant: in this case, the question was whether British tax-payers were going to continue stuffing “Dr.” Fisher et al’s back pockets, and that was the best he could do to persuade them, and he was the director of “research” at the Royal London Homeopathic “Hospital”.

                      So much for context.

              • b waghorn

                I to would be happy to go to a homeopath that had modern medicine as a back up.

      • One Two 4.1.4

        Of course he will do no such thing. None of them will. Not a single one

        Reading through this thread , your comments are accurate. IMO

        I’m one of the million who don’t vote. The system is the problem and it has to be dismantled

        Change will come, but not through the existing platforms and frameworks

        People who believe that voting ‘is better’ than not voting, are keeping the whole cesspool alive

        • weka

          I know a few people who at times don’t vote because they want the system to collapse. While I have some sympathy for the sentiment, as a strategy it is patently failing. There simply aren’t enough of you to make it work. The US has one of the lowest voter turnouts (48%) and it’s allowing the protofascists to be on control at precisely the point where other signifiers of collapse are increasing. Having the proto-fascists in power before and during a collapse is one of the worst things that could happen. It also entrenches AGW, which is going to make the problems with the system pale in comparison.

          Worse, it hands the government to the right every other decade which makes activism trying to change the system much much harder, including any activism you are involved in in alternate frameworks.

          • One Two

            I’ll unpack it a little further for you

            The system will collapse, or more accurately it will cannibalize itself.

            Not voting, is not a strategic, or even a tactical position. I simply will not play that particular course under any circumstances. Life has to be made , not made for you. Least of all by the lowest echelon of humanity dressed up in costumes selling snake oil and death

            I follow politics from a high level, but not because I’m interested in it. I’m interested in how many people are turning away , waking up and washing their hands of the blood stains they picked up by shaking hands of murderers, liars and thieves while they believed the system could be changed

            When more people turn away from the mainstream establishment sucking machines, change will truly be with us

            • weka

              Yes, that’s very similar to what I hear others saying. However my points still stand. In the timeframes that that will potentially work in we will gain catastrophic AGW because of right wing governments and we will be in a much worse position for change once the collapse happens. People simply aren’t walking away from the system in any signficant numbers and I don’t believe they will until things get very bad, by which time it will be much much harder to do anything creative beyond survive.

              So I understand the sentiment, but IMO it fails at a political level. I also think there is an inherent contradiction between people’s personal need to follow their own ideas, and creating new systems. They’re possibly even inherently incompatible. So while your beliefs are interesting and understandable, until you can put them in the context of the issues I am raising they’re not likely to mean much beyond the conceptual.

              • One Two

                People say all sorts of things, it’s what they do that is important

                What they do, will illustrate how they have interpreted the gravity of the situations being faced now, and upcoming

                I notice that you seem to be genuinely interested in hearing and discussing ideas which might assist with halting the menace of AGW, through existing political avenues ?
                That cork can’t be put back in the bottle, so it would be better use of energy taking control of what is inside control of local communities. If it’s not in control of local communities but should be, then ‘it needs to be taken back. Such action with in time heal environmental damage

                Humanity will solve the problem, not politics, political frameworks, economics, stock markets et al These can’t solve human problems, because they were designed not to, while being owned and controlled by openly, anti human anti environment entities (whomever, or whatever they might be)

                With respect, while you are waiting for politics to be turned towards providing the necessary directional changefor the majority of this planets inhabitants…. life is dissipating a moment at a time

                That is why politics fails, on all levels, and will continue to do so

                Awaiting a political solution, appears to be suicide and genocide all wrapped as a definitive, conclusive outcome

                • weka

                  You appear to have misunderstood what I meant. I’m not saying that politics will save us, I’m saying that before the collapse, the real work that needs to be done is more effective under a left wing govt than a right wing one, and that a right wing one lessens the chances significantly of us creating something useful during and after the collapse.

                  I also don’t believe we can halt AGW, but we still probably have some chance of lessening the worst effects. If not voting were going to help that, I’d say go for it, but all not voting does currently is hand the power and control to NACT who will promote the very things that create catastrophic climate change as well as undermine the resiliency movements.

                  “Such action with in time heal environmental damage”

                  There will come a point where it will be too late, that’s the whole point about runaway climate change. The cycles are too big for us to control and beyond a certain level of PPM of CO2 in the atmosphere, talk of recovering is redundant.

                  I do agree that the real work is community based.

                  • One Two

                    Politics, parliament and political process is controlled to the point where the possibility of a genuine left leaning Goverment being formed is slim to none

                    If that somehow happened it could not involve the current crop of industry funded cookie cutter clones. But that’s really the root of the problem. Monetary control ,integrated ‘global markets’ and mechanisms all with revolving doors

                    I see zero evidence that taking on the financial controllers (root problem) will eventuate which is potentially a gap you’re not acknowledging. Systems must be bypassed, not engaged with and as politics is captured, so it must also be bypassed

                    “Runaway climate change” won’t be decided by the ideological leanings of Nz government. AWG is NOT the most pressing issue faced, and IMO people need to understand why that is the true

                    The universe (climate) cannot be ‘controlled’ by humans beings. Forget the PPM focus its irrelevant in terms of ‘control’ to the same degree that any NZ government is irrelevant to the aggregate contribution of CO2, despite polluting above our weight

                    • BlueSky

                      One Two

                      I think in many ways you are correct. Yes the system has been captured but as long as it remains democratic there is a chance it can be changed if enough people are willing to engage and force that change.

                      You say you do not vote and what people do is important. Well if you do not use your right to influence others and vote, its power will be diluted.

                      The annoy thing is that the public of NZ are deceived, disengaged and distracted. These are strategies of those in power that need challenging regardless of who it is.

                    • weka

                      @One Two, I’m not talking about a truly left wing govt and the fact that you think I am suggests that you are missing the point despite my having explained it clearly several times now. Please go and reread what I said.

                      The change you are wanting is much less likely to happen under a right wing govt than a left wing (and by left wing I mean Labour/Green coalition). And the ability of communities to both make the necessary shifts and do so in a way that enhances wellbeing is also lessenes significantly under a right wing govt.

                      Your strategy of not voting in order to bring down the system isn’t working because not nearly enough people are doing it.

                      We’ll have to agree to disagree on AGW. Having the GP in power gives us a chance of doing something useful, having National in power gives us less than zero chance i.e. they’re actively making things much worse.

                  • One Two

                    In reply to your 10am this morning, Weka

                    I get what you’re saying, and do understand. Your position IMO is both right and wrong. It may soften the journey and alter the path, but the outcomes will remain the same overall. Looking for any relief from the current situation is completely understandable

                    Tinkering around the edges will not provide the change that’s required and is effectively a can kicking exercise IMO, playing for time

                    There is no evidence what The Greens might actually do if they ever form a government in future. While optimism is a beautiful thing, it is likely to turn to massive disappointed without structural changes

                    As mentioned, my none voting is not a strategy

                    Appreciate your responses, and enjoy the long weekend

                    • weka

                      Sorry One Two, but you still appear to not understand what I am talking about. You seem to think that I think the current system will be beneficial if we just tinker with it. I’m not saying that. I’m saying we can be more effective at the kind of change we want if the tide of proto-fascism is stemmed a bit. That’s not trying to make the system work.

                      The GP have already demonstrated their effectiveness. I don’t know what they will do in government regarding legislation etc, but I do know that they will affect change across society, because that is what they already do. The fact that most NZers want the govt to do more about climate change is in part due to the GP activism over the last 20 years.

                      “As mentioned, my none voting is not a strategy”

                      Ok, so it’s active disengagement based on the hope that if enough people do it the system will fall over?

  5. Jenny Kirk 5

    Andrew Little does not pretend to be a Jeremy Corbyn, CV. He’s his own person.

    And yes, he did say Labour has always supported international trading – that’s where
    most of our jobs come from.

    But you are continually repeating just that one mantra CV, and not balancing it with the other things that Andrew Little said – among which was the following:

    But the TPPA isn’t just a free trade agreement. It goes way beyond free trade. And it’s necessary to look at the non-trade parts of the deal. Two things that disturb me are, first: the restriction on New Zealand legislating to regulate land sales to non-resident foreigners (Labour’s policy is to require them to build a new house, not buy an existing one, and we would be unable to do this under the TPPA); and secondly the requirement to allow other TPPA countries, their citizens (including corporates) to have a say on changes to many New Zealand laws and regulations. For instance we would have to let Carlos Slim, the wealthy Mexican telecom company owner, vet any regulation of our telecommunications industry.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      The reason I don’t give Little any credit for his latest stance is that I don’t believe that he is insincere.

      Despite what he says: he knows that NZ cannot force a renegotiation of major points of the TPP, and he also knew last year that a Labour Government could not simple “flout” the parts of the TPP that it did not like.

      Little is very late coming to an understanding the TPPA. Kelsey and others have been making these points for over two years now.

      And late last year Little was saying that the TPPA was a done deal, Labour couldn’t do anything to oppose it, and that it met four out of five Labour “bottom lines.”

      • Jenny Kirk 5.1.1

        and since then, CV, Little has finally been able to read the full text and he doesn’t like what he’s reading and so has come out in opposition to it – give the guy a bit of lee-way, CV. The way you’re carrying on its as if you’d like to see the Nats back in power for a 4th term (and then we, as in our country, would be stuffed !)

        Apparently the Nats said Labour’s bottom lines were being met – before the full text was released which Andrew Little took in good faith. And don’t say that was foolish because it has been a Parliamentary convention that free trade agreements were – in the past – shared in some form or another – with all the Parliamentary Parties, so presumably he would have thought this was that convention working.

        • weka

          Huh, so that bit that the RWNJs have been quoting in the past few days (Little on the bottom lines being met) was a con?

          I suspect the change in Labour’s stance is also due to Little doing the work internally to have the numbers in Caucus (and maybe the wider party).

          • Anne

            I suspect the change in Labour’s stance is also due to Little doing the work internally to have the numbers in Caucus (and maybe the wider party).

            On the button weka. A good leader will talk to his caucus colleagues and make sure they understand the text and comprehend exactly what is at stake. The Labour caucus is no different to any other group. Some a clever and insightful… some are more gullible and open to falling for spin. I am sure that is precisely what Little did and he convinced the majority of caucus that the TPP in it’s present form was bad for NZ. The wider party is a different beast and he will not have had the time and opportunity to speak to many members. I doubt he needs to any way because most of us can figure it out for ourselves. 🙂

        • Karen

          I think you are absolutely right, Jenny. Labour were briefed and it seems that they were assured that 4 out of their 5 bottom lines had been met. Remember Shearer and Goff were in that briefing and I am sure they would have helped persuade the rest of Labour caucus to believe this.

          I think Little is a very careful man as well as being a lawyer. He would have known that these documents need very close scrutiny and further research and that is what he did over the summer break once the full text was available. He also knew he had to persuade his whole caucus if he wanted to oppose the agreement.

          As for Goff and Shearer I think their views have more to do with their future careers – Goff as mayor of Auckland and Shearer some international position that would give him the autonomy he wants.

  6. ianmac 6

    Here is a thought. If there are the predicted delays in signing by some countries including USA, then by 2017 Election year it could be a left leaning Government with the whip in hand. Go Greens, Labour NZFirst!

  7. Stuart Munro 7

    I think Little’s a little more savvy than some of his party – but doesn’t want to use the big stick. If public pressure forces Goff, Shearer and co. into line that’s better for the party than autocratic sackings.

    But the primacy of the issue demands a more coherent response – what was the last issue that got NZ marching in the streets? Labour need to be on the right side of this. If they had any antennae they’d’ve been leading it.

    • weka 7.1

      Does anyone know what Labour’s presence was like at today’s protests?

      I think Labour’s change on the TPPA and Little’s handling of the Goff/Shearer thing is either a good sign (like you say, he’s being smart), or a bad sign (he still doens’t have enough control of Caucus). I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, but it’s not a pleasant place to be.

      • cogito 7.1.1

        It is not necessarily all bad for a party to allow a range of views on controversial issues. It is something that could be usefully portrayed as an expression of maturity, democracy and free thinking, especially when compared to National’s one dimensional slavish mantra repetition.

        What is important, however, is for the public to understand the reasons for the divergence of views. If handled well, in an inclusive broad church sort of way, it could even increase public interest/engagement in the issues concerned.

        • weka

          I agree. One of the strategies we on the left could take is supporting Labour as a centre left party when they do things that move leftwards eg their change re the TPPA. This doesn’t mean that Labour have got their shit together, but any small changes in the right direction should be supported rather than condemned. Then we can also criticise where they are moving in the wrong direction. Slamming them all round just makes change much more difficult, especially when there is no alternate strategy presented.

          Little seems to me like he would make a good PM for the way that NZ is now and I really hope that what he and some of the Labourites here say about taking time to change is true and that he doesn’t get hobbled by the neoliberals within the party. Threads like this one are not going to help him.

          What is important, however, is for the public to understand the reasons for the divergence of views. If handled well, in an inclusive broad church sort of way, it could even increase public interest/engagement in the issues concerned.

          Very true. I don’t follow the MSM enough to know how Little and/or Labour come across.

      • Karen 7.1.2

        The Auckland marches are on signing day – February 4th. I assume a lot of Labour MPs will already be in Auckland for Little’s speech.

    • Anne 7.2

      I think you’ll find there will be a solid group of MPs and Labour activists attending the march. Perhaps Little himself will be there. I hope so.

  8. Incognito 8

    I like the fact that Little literally goes on the ‘hustings’ and tries to connect with the people in public. His State of the Nation Speech is not just for a select few of invited people or behind a wall of security staff but he will be accessible to everyone. It carries a risk but I find it refreshing; good on him. There’s much more to Little and NZLP than just the TPPA and lets not lose view of that despite what the MSM or Joyce like us to think; there are bigger fish to fry than TPPA.

  9. lprent 9

    Weather is still fine. Music is good. People still trailing in.

  10. Craig H 10

    Still not started yet – looking forward to it, though!

  11. lprent 11

    1. Changes in technology affecting work.

    2. Quite definite about opposing TPPA…


  12. lprent 12

    Retiring security for people in a changing world. Education..

    Life long learning… skills, knowledge, training and retraining is the future of work.

    Principle of free education commitment.

    3 years post secondary FREE education. Nothing about age restrictions.

  13. whateva next? 13

    Glad to put my energy behind the person we have now elected to lead the Labour Party, and let him get on with getting elected, so we can shift the fulcrum back to the centre of politics, rather than the far right where Key and his mob are insisting it is.
    If I agree/disagree with all/some of Andrew Little’s decisions isn’t really relevant, but having trust in his intentions is, and allowing him to focus on how to counter the rabid attack Panzer divison of a National Party we currently have must be gruelling.

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    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 ...
    4 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
    5 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
    5 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 ...
    5 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
    6 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
    6 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
    7 days 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
    7 days 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
    7 days 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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