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10,000+ at Auckland anti-MOM protest

Written By: - Date published: 3:14 pm, April 28th, 2012 - 87 comments
Categories: activism, democratic participation, petition, privatisation, referendum, uncategorized - Tags:

Lots of people… get down to Britomart..

Mind you Britomart is filling up rapidly. They need a few more megaphones by the look of the crowd.

Penny Bright sucks at chants. 😈

Slowly moving off.  This is mining protest levels…

A lot of people… Seriously slow. Walked 50 metres. Really good humoured and highly social.

Lots of interesting banners. I will post some of them later.

Finally  past Shortland Street. Lots of people signing the petition on the footpath.

1616: heading towards Wellesley Street. Hooe they stop stopping soon. Looks like rain.

1633: at a rapidly filling Aotea Square

1640: David Shearer short cogent speech concentrating on getting signatures on the petition.

1645: Russel Norman excellent speech. Sounds like our posts..

John Banks booed big time…

1650: Fiery speech from woman from NZ First. That has to be a first for me to see them at a protest.

1700: Glen Innes people evicted from state houses, occupy movement, the other Mike Smith from the hikoi

1702: Hone leads the singing….

1706 Ok.. Party time starts and we leave.

The only untoward incident was some idiots pushing down the barricades to the grass at the Aotea square. What is the bet that is what gets highlighted on the mainstream  news? Rather than report how deeply unpopular the MOM asset sales are, how little economic sense they make, and the ideologically stupid way that National and their clinger parasites are pursuing it – we will find that the protest gets overshadowed by some fences…

I suspect that National are going to rue the day they came up with this weird arse multi-ownership model. MOM sucks economically.

[reports say 700-1,000 turned out in Nelson. All shows of the huge level of opposition]

87 comments on “10,000+ at Auckland anti-MOM protest ”

  1. freedom 1

    Maybe a bit of streaming would help those around the country to build support for next weekend in Wellington. Justin.tv has a very good ap for live broadcasting from phones.

    http://www.justin.tv/ to create a FREE account, no official id or credit type data required.

    Once you have membership when you go to log in from your phone you will receive the link for the mobile broadcasting ap.

    Your broadcast is also automatically saved on your channel for later viewing.

    disclaimer: I have no association whatsoever to Justin.tv outside of being a channel surfer and occassional broadcaster. I simply think they do what they do well when it comes to free net broadcasting,

    • lprent 1.1

      On my cell data plan?

      • freedom 1.1.1

        i don’t know about Auckland but Wellington has multiple free 30 minute wireless spots throughout most of the city. If people spend the next few days familiarizing themselves with the jtv site (and let us know of others) then perhaps the message has an honest chance to be seen. The MSM is already showing how it plans to ignore the reality of this Hikoi. Take the Stuff article below, from today, that plainly and deliberately suggests the Hikoi will not reach Wellington for another two weeks. Pathetic, that’s all they are, so it is up to us all to see that NZ has a chance of knowing the truth. Aotearoa deserves to be saved from these predators.

        here is the schedule for those that do not have it yet.

        to all pedants , – yes the schedule has a couple of typos, i was going to rewrite it when it first arrived but then the honesty of it shone through and if the media or any other apologists for this government complain about a few typos we can point them to any page of any newspaper and point out a dozen or more errors any day of the week.

  2. freedom 2

    if we needed any more proof that the MSM want to ignore this event,
    the Herald main page and the national page are totally devoid of all references to the Hikoi.

    • MikeG 2.1

      at least stuff.co.nz has a piece, but the photo feature is a bear falling from a tree in Colorado – obviously way more important!

    • just saying 2.2

      It was prominently placed in the digital dom-post about a half hour ago. Unspecified “thousands” were described in what looked like a first sketch of a story.
      Sorry, I’m damned if I know what consititutes the “front page” in the online format.

      I’m sure the Auckland Standardistas will be out in force, maybe some even looking at other marchers not knowing that they’ve had lengthy discussions with them in another life.

    • xtasy 2.3

      TVOne and TV3 showed a totally insignificant few seconds of the march, had their usual two or three liner comments, and that was it. What were all those cameramen and women doing down there though? If they were not filming for the TV companies, who the hell were they filming for? Or is the “Homeland Security” version office that we have in NZ now?

      Also hundreds of photographers were on both sides on Queen Street, taking endless photos and video footage. Is this only to be shares by some as “hey, I was there too”, kind of stuff, or is this seriously going to be looked at, researched and commented on.

      NZ is after all a kind of “benevolent dictatorship”, that is my experience and total conviction after so much protest, action and the political, economic and social realities this country faces.

      True democracy somehow looks very different to what we get served every day.

      Maybe Shonkey has done this deal with Mainland China, so they keep an eye and a lid on things already?

      • Carol 2.3.1

        Police video surveillance of protests in NZ is not new, in my experience.

        When I cam back to live in this part of the world back in the mid 90s (I had come from London and was heading for Aussie after a bit of a stay here), I went to the demonstrations against John major and CHOGM (Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting). CHOGM was in Auckland that time round. There was talk in the media of a fear of agitators from outside NZ coming to disrupt the conference. In fact, the most disruptive person on that demo was Sue Bradford who got arrested – it was the first time I’d heard of her, but she was clearly well known to others and the police.

        I had been used to some massive demos in London where I was just one of many many thousands (against many of Thatcher’s policies, as well anti-racism, and feminist and gay demos). But when I walked up to the CHOGM protest there was only a handful of people. There was a guy wearing a jacket labelled “Police” with a video camera on his shoulder. He stood there for a long period with the camera fixed in my direction for several minutes, or maybe longer (there weren’t that many people where I was standing). I guess I was a new face.

        I thought I had arrived in a police state at that moment.

      • freedom 2.3.2

        “What were all those cameramen and women doing down there though”
        getting footage of the 75th Annivesary of the Airforce or some other vitally important civic event, meanwhile around the corner thousands of the brave men and women who these military people are menat to be protecting marched to protect the future of these airmen’s children

      • Dr Terry 2.3.3

        Yes, Xtasy, with the coming of Key the country became a “benevolent dictatorship” indeed. But because the word “benevolent” means “showing good will”, “kindly”, “doing good rather than making profit”, I am now highly reluctant to use it. Can you (or anyone) suggest an improved alternative?

    • Fortran 2.4

      Perhaps their reporters can count.
      I could not see 10,000 – police say up to 3,000.

  3. muzza 3

    Great to see so many people there, a varied crowd too, people from all walks of life, ethnicities etc.

  4. Salsy 4

    Great turn out also in Nelson today, 700 to 1000 or so marching through Trafalgar Street, we ran out of petitions more than once, it was a signing frenzy! Have left some petitions at the Free House and also at Deville cafe. I cant see any issue getting the numbers if today was any indication.

  5. captain hook 5

    listen up.
    old hippy trick.
    levitate the sky centre.

  6. Eddie 6

    what do you reckon the size of the protest was? 10% of the mining one, quarter, half?

    • Carol 6.1

      Quarter. Stuff says 8,000. So maybe 10,000

      • Wonker 6.1.1

        Yeah – about 0.57% of people likely to be Auckland.

        • Reality Bytes

          A fantastic turn out all the same. Many people sympathetic to the cause would love to be there but were otherwise engaged or unable to attend. I couldn’t make it personally, had to work, but would have liked to join in, and I’m sure I’m not the only one in that boat.

          The anti-mining-conservation-land protest in Auckland was about 4 or 5 times this size, so still maybe just 3-4% of the people of Auckland, it was very impressive all the same. Biggest protest in a generation they called it, and this protest was the second biggest.

          I don’t see anything close to these sort of protests for supporting economic growth via mining schedule 4 conservation land or risky deep sea oil mining ventures, or selling off vital strategic national assets.

          So I guess the people who give a shit have spoken.

      • toad 6.1.2

        Yeah, I was there and reasonably familiar with estimating crowd numbers at protests from many years of previous experience.

        I would agree 8K – 10K.

  7. millsy 7

    Where do I find pics?

  8. Carol 8

    I went on the Auckland demo. The train in from west Auckland was tightly packed standing room only, and mostly with people going to the demo. There was friendly camaraderie there with people talking to others they didn’t know about the issues. Anyone not going to the demo would have learned a thing or two….hopefully…. as long as they didn’t have their ears shut.

    The demo was fairly big. A couple of people I talked to were unhappy about what they perceived to be lack of publicity for the demo – e.g. there had been no mention of it int he Herald this morning. As I recall, that anti-schedule 4 demo had got a mention in the Herald on the morning of the demo.

    But the demo was good humoured and it got a lot of attention on the way up Queen Street. I was at the back of the demo, and we got to Aotea Square as loads of people were coming out of the Civic (from Jersey Boys? why? why there and not on the demo?), and they were asking each other why the road was blocked off by police.

  9. Jared 9

    10,000? Bit optimistic aren’t you?

    • Jilly Bee 9.1

      Jared – I would have loved to be there today, but I had prior commitments which simply had to take precedence. I have downloaded the petition and will get as many signatures as I possibly can.

    • Reality Bytes 9.2

      4/5ths of Auckland in spirit and moral support though I recon.

      Even many Nat for lifer Stalwarts are anti this stupid policy. 4 out of 5 against this is pretty realistic imo. This protest is just the a small representation of a diverse range of people who have a lot to agree with, regardless of who they voted for.

    • lprent 9.3

      I think it was more than 10k. Felt like 10-15k when I looked back on the street. Queen street was pretty packed, but it wasn’t as long as the mining march…

      But this has been a quiet demo. Relatively little publicity because the petition wording was only decided recently.

      • lovinthatchangefeeling 9.3.1

        3500 – the number of people reported by RadioLive (4pm bulletin, 28/4/2012) to be on the Aotearoa Is Not For Sale hikoi in Auckland this afternoon. (Yes; even the woeful Blues drew nearly four times that number on a wet Friday night!)

        [lprent: Radio Live are outright lying. Not the first time I have noticed them doing it when they don’t like the politics of what they are reporting. And it is really hard to see how they could have gained a count at that point in time. Much of the march hadn’t left the Britomart area of queen street by then.]

  10. Nick K 10


    Over a million people voted for the policy just a few months ago.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      Oh yay, Nick K supports holding a referendum on asset sales to confirm his numbers!!!

    • Reality Bytes 10.2

      So based on the turnout figures of this protest, are you implying this is some sort of referendum, the conclusion of which is 99% of us actually support strategic asset sales?

      Otherwise, what conclusions have you reached from your observations of this historical event?

    • Pete 10.3

      The reasons why people vote for a particular party are many and varied and often do not constitute a complete endorsement of a party’s entire platform. For example, the National Party’s stated preference to ditch MMP and go for the Supplementary Member voting system in the 2011 referendum was explicitly rejected by a sizable proportion of people who returned them to government nonetheless.

      Surely the clarity a citizen’s initiated referendum would deliver around the mixed ownership model would be a good thing.

    • lprent 10.4

      Over a million people voted for a party – they didn’t vote for a particular policy. Almost as many eligible people didn’t vote. Using your logic, we could say that they expressed no confidence in the MOM policy since they didn’t vote for it. Almost as many people voted for parties with policies against MOM.

      So by your logic you just got outvoted….

      But the logic is stupid and doesn’t make any sense. Please avoid showing your inability to control yourself.. Public wanking is offensive to all who observe it.

    • Balanced View 10.5

      Nick, I hope you’re regretting making this comment. It is so far off the mark it’s not even funny. By all accounts it was an outstanding turnout considering it is notoriously difficult to rustle up a crowd of note for these sorts of events.

      • Colonial Viper 10.5.1

        Which side are you on Mr Laugh-a-Minute?

        • Balanced View

          See, this is your problem Viper, thinking that you have to choose a side and then not allow yourself to view an issue from the opposite angle.

          • fender

            I couldn’t believe your uncharacteristically ballenced view either. Well done mate!

            • Balanced View

              Thanks Fendles! Interesting how my views are only balanced when they happen to match yours.

              • fender

                Your view was more factual for a change, and you lived up to your name for the very first time.

                Little wonder CV is suspicious.

      • Nick K 10.5.2

        I know. I marched against the Electoral Finance Act (waste of time). And I marched against the repeal of section 59 (waste of time).

        You’ve got to pick your fights in politics. I don’t see the antagonists winning this one.

        Anyway, I still fail to see where this “selling state assets” thing goes. The asset belongs to the company and the company isn’t selling the assets. Shareholders do not own the underlying assets of the company. So selling the shares is not selling the assets.

        • henry olongo

          Absolute bollox pal- where you been since 1984?

        • Draco T Bastard

          Wow, the disconnect from reality gets wider and wider.

        • North

          Nick K: that is classic, smart arse sophistry. Verbiage. Distraction . How Clever.

          Meaningless in law. Ridiculous in common sense.

  11. captain hook 11

    even the Swiss never sold more than 33% of Swissair.

    • insider 11.1

      The govt never owned Swissair, but did take a shareholding. It went bankrupt in 2001…. The remnants were taken over by Lufthansa in 2005. So apart from that you ar spot on

  12. xtasy 12

    A very good march, but sadly not big enough, that is my resume of it all. I went and saw the gathering crowds, it was encouraging, and it was overdue, after all that government propaganda about the desperate need to “balance” books, “pay off debts” and whatever else.

    I got frustrated though with the lack of imagination of chants. It was dominated by the ones we know from many marches, UNITE, Socialist Aotearoa and some Maori activits groups. Fair enough with that, but “Aotearoa is not for sale”, “fight back”, “John Key you got mail, Aotearoa is not for sale”, and similar ones are good in measure, just too limited a call to get more on board.

    That is exactly what I was missing. We had a great turnout of unionists, MANA, Greens, NZ First, Labour and some Iwi supporters, yet most bystanders did not join in, perhaps too worried that this is just another one of the marches of the “radical left” and the “rent a crowd”.

    Indeed the march was far from that and not intended to be so limited, but I suggest that the organisers do in future perhaps get a bit more innovative and try to be a bit more “inclusive”, because there is a very large fraction of NZ society, middle class, working poor and whatever you may call it, who have in this asset sale drama at least a very sympathetic sentiment.

    I was not surprised by the poor clapping for David Shearer (he got some fair suppor though), but to hear the roar when Russel Norman was speaking, that was a marked difference. The lady from NZ First tried hard and got a good response too, but I would have welcomed a few more speakers of substance to stand up for the cause.

    Truly, such a march should have been led by a Labour Party or Green Party leader, next to Maori doing the Hikoi. That would be true political leadership. But we have those opposition leaders hide in the crowd and leave it to the more radical activists to lead the chants and more.

    What does this tell me? I still do not fully trust the opposition politicians, because their action is not enough leadership and not convincing enough. Are they worried about pressures and challenges, when they may be in government? I am sure it has at least something to do with it.

    It is easy to chant, march and so forth, but to stand by principles has proved to be the greates challenge of all for NZ politicians.

    • shreddakj 12.1

      I was involved in a very small part in the planning meetings of the march, and we had tried to get the Labour and Greens on board quite early on, but they didn’t endorse it until it had already picked up some momentum and did piss all themselves to actually promote the march and get their supporters out there on the street.

  13. xtasy 13

    My impression was that the crowd was most certainly over 10 k, I estimated at one time, it was close to 20 k, but that was perhaps a bit optimistic. Once the whole lot (most at least) had assembled in Aotea Square, the crowd was certainly 10 k plus, possibly 12 to 15 k!

    That is quite a good turnout for any march, and although I would have expected more, I feel that lack of information, the usual brainwashing, distraction by the societal stakeholders of power, who are retail enterprises, biased media and wishy washy entertainment providers of weekend events, are the (usual) reasons for the crowd not having been bigger.

    Does John Key every march, and what would be his turnout?

    • lovinthatchangefeeling 13.1

      Wow how are your eyes? According to Scoop The “Aotearoa is not for sale’’ protest of around 2000 people was met with a large number of police when it left Britomart train station late this afternoon.


      And that is 1500 fewer than the 3500 people reported by RadioLive (4pm bulletin, 28/4/2012)

      • lprent 13.1.1

        How unexpected the variations on counts. But scoop puts up almost anyone’s statement, including wannabe journo’s. In this case it is pretty clear whoever it was wasn’t reporting the protest I went to.

        Sure there were police. There are for every major protest. They were mixed in with the assembling protestors at the bottom end of queen street and there were only a few.

        Nearest I saw a line of police was the ones seperated by 10ft intervals protecting new grass at the Aotea centre

        • insider

          That said it is very easy to overestimate crowds, especially if in it, and there tends to be confirmation bias. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110824191733.htm

          Remember the 150 k on the waterfront for RWC opening that was only about 70k and the huge over reporting of Santa parade and Christmas I the park.

          • lprent

            Yep. It also appears to be really easy to under estimate crowds as well. For instance the police reporting 2k at the assembly point is consistent with their usual underestimates. On Queen Street that is well less than a block in size.

            I was pretty surprised at how many went. The publicity and even electronic promotion was minimal compared to the mining protest. I was only receiving emails in the last few days. I was just lucky that nothing else was scheduled.

            • Carol

              Yes, I was fairly early to the demo due to the infrequent trains (1 per hour). And there weren’t that many people to start with. There were about 4-5,000 to start with.

              I’m not sure how I ended up at the end of the march. I am quite short and could not see where the front of the march was, once we were heading up Queen Street. I couldn’t even hear most of the chants as there was noise coming form various directions, and a lot of load drumming, plus a guy singing with a guitar. There weren’t very many police that I could see, but there had been a few about at Britomart when we were assembling.

              It seemed extremely crowded with people when we got to Aotea Square.

              The demo was announced a month or two ago (so I booked a day off work), but then I never heard very much about it again until the last week or so, and mostly on blogs.

      • xtasy 13.1.2

        Were you there? Obviously not. The police presence was clearly visible at the bottom of Queen St, but hardly any at the upper end, apart from the few patrol cars. There was NO reason for police to get involved, because it was a very well organised and orderly march. There were loud chants, but not disruptions, no harassment, no issues worth noting at all.

        I am surprised about your negativity, but I presume you come from the opposite camp, cheer leading a leader of little substance and of dodgy deals that will do more harm than good for most NZers.

        I spare you the rest of what I think about you and your comment.

        There were most certainly well over 10 thousand though!

  14. dd 14

    I was surprised by how many people did turn up. I would be calling it over 10k easily.

    It was a pretty average day to weather wise which never helps.

    Anyway, It was a great march but I was a little disappointed to hear one lady walking along saying “Wake up you sleepy little hobbits and join the march”. The best way to get people on your side is certainly not to insult them; “Come join the march” would have been enough.

    • dd 14.1


      Peter Dunne has a poll up on his website to figure out what public opinion is on asset sales (It’;s pretty obvious but he needs a bit of help).

      Poll is here http://www.unitedfuture.org.nz/do-you-support-john-keys-proposal-for-the/poll.do

      • marsman 14.1.1

        85% say NO. Hopefully Peter Dunne will take note and say NO too.

      • deuto 14.1.2

        I had a look at that (and voted No) last night when the link was put up in comments on another post here. At that point is was running at about 80%. However, I noted that the poll does not indicate the number of votes (total or for either the Yes or No options) and also that the only two comments under the poll were dated Oct and Dec 2011. So it would look like the poll is not new and with only two comments added, it has not had many people voting – as yet anyway.

        • Pete George

          It’s an old pre-election poll that some now seem to be trying to stack with votes to make some sort of point.

          • Draco T Bastard

            If it’s such an old poll then why is it still active?

          • felix

            It does say “Latest poll”, but if as you suggest the timing of the poll is important in reading the results, what were the results showing at the time of the election?

            • Salsy

              It also states that:

              We understand clearly that the only reason for our existence is to represent the voice of the people in our parliament. We believe that any party that is not constantly in touch with the views of the people is simply not doing its job.

              Is this out of date also Pete?

  15. Olwyn 15

    I am not good at calling crowd numbers, but they did swell as the march went on, with people joining in all the way up Queen St. It was all very good humoured, and a sign that amused me was “John Key, Monique thinks you’re a dick.”

    • Carol 15.1

      The sign that amused this Dr Who fan said, “John Key, the 1980s called and want their failed policies back.”

      And the most environmentally-friendly sign was on the thin end of a branch, which forked enough at the end to hold a little card that said, “NO”.

    • fabregas4 15.2

      I do too.

  16. freedom 16

    yesterday on Stuff the turnout was reported as 8000, today on the Herald site it was reported as 3000. let’s split the difference and call it 6,000 and focus on adding another zero to that number by the time it hits Wellington next weekend !!

  17. Salsy 17

    Its not the numbers that are in the march that count so much, its the numbers that are on the petition and how fast we can get them. Petition forms are available on the greens website.

  18. newsense 18

    I can’t find a report on RNZ. Can anyone else find one?

    and this TVNZ report just says thousands…


    I disagree- a march of 10,000 or near it is very intimidating, and makes people stand up and take notice. 6000 is serious.

    A march of 3,500 or 3000 is a bit luke warm. Stats and the Herald were a bit of an issue on PA recently. What happened to editingtheherald? May need it back.

    • Jenny 18.1

      At three or four thousand attendees this protest would have been the same size as the numbers officially recorded for the Watersiders protest on the 18th last month.

      Having attended both I can say that yesterday’s march was many magnitude bigger.

      The question is; Why yesterday’s march required such an official downsizing?

      • Jenny 18.1.1

        Could the answer be, that the conservatives in the media and the government who support asset sales are not at all sure of their mandate for this policy.

        Further the soon to be charged John Banks likely to lose his seat, the so called mandate evaporates into steam. Not forgetting that in the first place the government only barely achieved this shaky mandate through a political jack up signed in a dodgy tea party deal.

        • Gosman

          Oooooh! Conspiracy theory alert. Perhaps it was the alien’s at Roswell what did it.

          BTW even if Bank’s resigns the liklihood of a left leaning cadidate winning in Epsom is about as likely as John Key admitting he is just running NZ to improve his investment portfolio.

          • Colonial Viper

            I agree and don’t think a left candidate would win Epsom. Perhaps a Conservative candidate though. And there’s always the Winston Wildcard.

            • Gosman

              NZ First winning in Epsom?!? Now I know you have truly lost your mind. The majority of National party supporters probably loath Winston more than they dislike Labour.

  19. Than 19

    The reported numbers (by outlet) are; Stuff 8,000, RadioLive 3,500, HoS 3,000, and Scoop 2,000. None citing a source. I’m waiting to see the police estimate, but at the moment something like 3,000 – 5,000 seems a realistic number.

    But to me the main reason JK will be able to ignore this march was how unfocused it was. If everybody on the march was yelling “No Asset Sales, No Selling Our Country” and nothing else, that might have meant something. But most of the cries were generic anti-National/JK rhetoric, combined with anti-Asset sales slogans and a grab-bag of other issues. This really negates the effect of the march. It shows that the marchers weren’t people who voted National but opposed Asset sales – they were people who already opposed National anyway. John Key can’t lose their votes (he never had them) so why should he care?

    • Deb 19.1

      may I venture to suggest that the anti-JK/anti-Nat/anti-anything on the right type of rhetoric does nothing to educate fence sitters about either the negatives of or alternatives to National coalition’s plan to move to the MOM. Nats got a mandate well enough and in order to have done so they spent a good deal of energy convincing people that it was a good ownership, operational and revenue gathering model. It is simply not good enough to think that oppositon for opposition’s sake will sway public opinion without presenting either a solid alternative plan or presenting the facade that those who oppose are a truly united force.

      • millsy 19.1.1

        Just over 50% of the voters chose a party that opposed asset sales:

        NZ First
        Maori Party
        The Conservatives.

    • Gosman 19.2

      Exactly. National went to the electorate with their plans for partial asset sales. It is well aware that there are a substantrial number of people opposed. These people had the opportunity to vote against them so therefore National won’t be concerned about a few thousand, (certainly not the 10,000 + implied in the heading of this thread), marching in Auckland. What you would need would be a by-election in a marginal electorate that could influence them. Not on the horizon at the moment though.

    • muzza 19.3

      I quite agree, from someone who was at the first two meetings which kick started the march process, my observations are the following. I was also at the march on Saturday!

      1: There is little cohesion by those who claim to be the “leaders” of the active community
      2: There is little in the way of a clear strategy
      3: The march was poorly organised – before the day, not talking about the day itself.
      4: The march will have zero effect on the decisions the current government are making.

      The fact that many people oppose the asset sales, which National did make public before the elections, says the following.

      1: Party voters , vote for their party only, they are not able to prioritize issue critically.
      2: National deceived the electorate – re 10%, 49% foreign ownership etc
      3: National are blatantly working to someone else’s game plan

      Actually, what we do know from recent MSM articles, is the average voter no longer votes, because they do not trust politicians…

      Government is not listening, and will not listen to the public, and has little to fear from what I can see of the active community.

      It will take more than a by-election in a marginal electorate, but I agree with Gosman, that is one of the few factors that can make an real impact, although ultimately the game plan will continue, regardless of who is in government!

      • Deb 19.3.1

        Muzza – I am not at all sure that people (as you say) “the average voter no longer votes, because they do not trust politicians…”. I put it to you that people are disengaged because they lack comprehensive Civics education, we have an MMP system and because the overwhelming funding of the political elections comes from STATE FUNDING. People simply have no real imperative to fundraise and therefore feel part of the collective. Lack of engagement at party level is only amplified by MMP, the system that feeds parliament with party choices – and very often the Party chooses people who have been soundly rejected in their electorates.

    • Jenny 20.1

      Wow the incredible shrinking protest march. Eventually it will become so small, John Key will be able to roll it up and stuff it into a thimble.

  20. Jenny 21

    “Big police presence as 2000 March through Queen Street…..”

    Scoop report by Sebastian Mackay


    Are there any photos or video evidence to back up this claim of “a big police presence”?

    Could it be, there was “a big police presence”, but it was swamped by the huge numbers of the march?

    Surely this must be a candidate for the worst piece of reporting in the history of New Zealand journalism.

    The two statements made in this headline just cannot logically be reconciled.

    A large police presence and only 2000 protesters???

    Having attended the march, through the crowds I personally only noticed two police men walking beside the protest. Were the rest hiding around the corner?

    Were there many more there, but unnoticed by me due to the huge size of the crowd?

    How many police in the view of this reporter is a “Big Police Presence”?


    That level of policing, would have meant one policeman for every 10 protesters, that is if this journalist was correct and there was only 2000 protesters.

    Look at the photos, obviously a laughable claim.

    So in the view of this reporter was a big police presence 20?

    That level of policing would have meant one policeman for every 100 protesters, that is, if there was only 2000 protesters.

    This figure at a stretch might possibly fit the claim that there were only 2000 people on the march,

    But is 20 police worthy of the headline “Big police presence..”

    Maybe if it was describing a police presence at a drunken teenage party in suburbia.

    And where were these 20 police?

    I never saw them.

    Scan all the photos you can. Is there any photo of this protest where there is ever more than one police officer in shot?

    All I can say is that this reporter is a big fat liar and a disgrace to his profession.

    What a joke.

    • Jenny 21.1

      Even if there was 1 police officer to every 100 protesters, ie. 20 cops, this level of policing would have been very noticeable.

      It wasn’t. In fact this was one of the most lightly policed and relaxed protest I have ever been on.

      The inescapable conclusion is that the figures for this protest have been seriously and deliberately downgraded. Either that, or Sebastion Kay is not fit to be a journalist.

      What crappy and amateur journalism, no citations, just exaggerated policing figures and belittled protester figures both just pulled out of thin air.

      To recover any credibility Kay must reveal what gave him the idea there was a big police presence at this march. He might also like to tell us, roughly even the numbers that were “a big police presence”.

      • Gosman 21.1.1

        Why would I, or anyone else for that matter, take your estimate of the numbers as being any more credible than a journalist? You have a vested interest in boosting the numbers to as high as possible.

        • McFlock

          Well, if the journalist is crap at counting cops, how are they at counting protestors?

        • PJ

          The scoop website allows anyone to submit material. As far as I can ascertain this is the only ‘story’ “Sebastien MacKay” has ever submitted. Hardly a journalist.

          I was there on Saturday. IMO there were many many more than 2000 people.

          Officially Aotea Square’s capacity is 20 000 people, at the end of the march, before people drifted off, the square was (at an absolute minimum) a third full. For me that makes “MacKay’s” estimate laughable.

          • Than

            That 20,000 capacity would be with people packed tightly shoulder to shoulder; a third of that is around 6,000-7,000.

            But if people were, say, half as densely packed (which would still be filling the space to a casual eye) that gives a crowd of 3,000 – 3,500, which is consistent with most of the media reports. A figure as low as 2,000 is possible, but would require the crowd to be very loosely spaced.

        • Jenny

          Gosman, I didn’t give an estimate.

          • felix

            To be fair Jenny, Gosman’s far too busy replying to stop and read the comments he’s replying to.

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