web analytics

Author Archive

The democracy challenge

Written By: - Date published: 2:20 pm, November 24th, 2013 - 101 comments

I’ve been thinking about what next years’ election is going to be like. Not like 2011 that’s for sure. Labour was in the doldrums and ran a largely negative campaign. Let’s assume that Labour has learnt its lesson about running an effective campaign and ticks all the boxes. The secret weapon that Labour and the Greens have eschewed for as many elections as I can remember is actually working together.

Dear media….

Written By: - Date published: 8:50 pm, September 24th, 2013 - 9 comments

Just for the record, if you or any other idiot accuse me of homophobia, genocide, necrophilia, child kidnapping or just not being nice enough please use this photo; not the ones you used recently which make me look disturbingly like my mother – whom I love and admire dearly but she is, after all, 81. […]

Cunliffe passes my campaign litmus test

Written By: - Date published: 8:14 pm, September 6th, 2013 - 83 comments

I’ve just spent the last week on the road with David Cunliffe and his wife Karen. Campaigns are a handy litmus test to see people as they really are when under pressure and performing to grueling schedules. As a general rule I’m prepared to like most people but as friends who know me well will […]

No time for experiments

Written By: - Date published: 3:04 pm, August 22nd, 2013 - 158 comments

We all knew David Shearer was a good guy and he’s just proved how good – and noble – a man he is by resigning rather than forcing a messy and protracted leadership coup. Let’s hope that caucus, Labour members and the affiliates will be as clear headed. Now is not the time for another […]

Campaign heroics or hubris?

Written By: - Date published: 12:02 pm, June 6th, 2013 - 38 comments

I was impressed by this press statement from the Mana Party on the ground in the Ikaroa Rawhiti by-election reporting that they door-knocked over 1000 houses over the weekend and found that support for their candidate was over 70%.  As a political campaigner of many years experience, and I’m now running Labour’s by-election HQ in […]

Something missing from asset sales debate

Written By: - Date published: 7:28 pm, September 8th, 2012 - 38 comments

Something’s missing from Labour’s position on asset sales. It’s what it will do with the partially privatised companies (if the sales do go ahead despite Treaty issues and the dearth of economic rationale)  when  Labour is once more in  government.  I understand why it cannot promise to buy back the shares but why not make […]

Drug testing beneficiaries; yeah that’s the problem

Written By: - Date published: 2:49 pm, August 17th, 2012 - 66 comments

I could hardly believe my ears this morning when I heard about Paula Bennett’s plan to drug test beneficiaries and cut their benefits if they fail.  Yeah that’s the problem that’s preventing people from finding work.  Drugs.  Not the 6.8 percent unemployment rate (and it’s higher in the provinces).   It’s hard to imagine a […]

Bad behaviour puts Labour activists off

Written By: - Date published: 10:18 pm, August 13th, 2012 - 83 comments

I have spent the better part of 17 years  – eight  of those as a paid organiser for the Labour Party – practicing the ancient art of alchemy; turning supporters into volunteers, volunteers into members and members into activists.  I have recruited hundreds of union and Labour Party members. I have mentored and trained, supported […]

Tea ladies to be drug tested

Written By: - Date published: 10:13 am, May 11th, 2012 - 45 comments

 Minister of Labour Kate Wilkinson seems to be living  in an alternative universe, with her comment on Checkpoint yesterday that tea ladies in the adventure tourism industry could be drug tested: “The boss might be tested, it could be his turn or it could be the tea lady.” We’ll take it as a given that Kate assumes the boss […]

What would Wilberforce say?

Written By: - Date published: 3:51 pm, February 21st, 2012 - 33 comments

Consciences are uncomfortable things and mine’s been giving me a bit of trouble lately.   I’ve been on the horns of a dilemma (sorry for the cliche but who can resist the imagery?) about employment practices. We allow ourselves a handwringing moment, a short burst of outraged righteousness and then run off to buy  a pair […]

Wanted: more news like this

Written By: - Date published: 9:44 am, February 2nd, 2012 - 16 comments

A remarkably nice worker/boss story from across the ditch: Australian Ken Grenda may have sold his bus company, but his staff of almost 2,000 are smiling. Mr Grenda gave cash bonuses totalling A$15m ($16m, £10m) from proceeds of the sale to employees of his 66-year-old Melbourne-based company. The bonuses, averaging A$8,500, were based on the length […]

Setting up business: we’re prize winners

Written By: - Date published: 10:31 am, January 18th, 2012 - 35 comments

Yesterday I officially set myself up in business.  As a GST registered independent contractor. It took about half an hour. Both IRD and ACC’s websites were easy to navigate and understand. I do admit I got a little befuddled trying to figure out the correct ACC classification for what I do (enthusiastic nagging, recruitment and communications at […]

1000 member challenge

Written By: - Date published: 11:06 am, January 11th, 2012 - 9 comments

My challenge (as part of my new life as expert communications / campaign / recruitment consultant to the stars) over the next 6 weeks is to encourage 1000 union members to bring their family into the union family for just $1 a week. That’s 1000 people who are already members of a union affiliated to the CTU to sign up their own family and whanau members to Together

Together: union security for $1 week

Written By: - Date published: 12:01 pm, December 22nd, 2011 - 75 comments

There’s a new union in town and who knows?  it might just prove to be the salvation of the union movement (so you can put money on  some hard-headed unionists opposing it for ideological reasons!) The concept  of Together is simple; if you currently belong to a union and you’ve got family members who work in places where there’s […]

The little I know about David Shearer

Written By: - Date published: 1:55 pm, December 3rd, 2011 - 134 comments

I ran David Shearer’s campaign headquarters in the 2009 Mt Albert by-election. That gave me unique perspective to get a good hard look at a man in a pressure cooker environment. David arrived from the middle east literally a few short hours before the candidate selection speeches.  It showed.  He looked tired. But he went […]

Do the maths on massive public service cuts

Written By: - Date published: 2:36 pm, November 15th, 2011 - 37 comments

We finally get a glimpse of just how ‘small’ the government thinks small government should be. From the Sunday Star Times: It has slashed new spending provisions and put the public service on a belt-tightening programme for which, English warns, there is no end in sight.  The public services, he says, is only about a […]

PAY IT BACK!

Written By: - Date published: 5:02 pm, October 28th, 2011 - 39 comments

The Front Fell Off

Written By: - Date published: 1:21 pm, October 19th, 2011 - 7 comments

Clarke and Dawe on maritime disasters, all good build up to our own home-grown version…

Sleepover Bill in House tonight

Written By: - Date published: 4:10 pm, September 27th, 2011 - 48 comments

Where the fuck is Webb Ellis

Written By: - Date published: 12:36 pm, September 21st, 2011 - 3 comments

http://youtu.be/WazeyJtY7UQ Very, very funny. Where the fuck is Webb Ellis? hat tip: Trevor Mallard at Red Alert

118 years on – what would Kate say?

Written By: - Date published: 4:15 pm, September 19th, 2011 - 15 comments

118 years to the day when NZ became the first country in the world to give women the vote.  You can imagine how incredibly proud Kate and the sisterhood must have been. You can imagine them lifting their eyes to the future and seeing women standing shoulder to shoulder with their brothers, equal in political rights (and determined to […]

Are PPPs the best we can do?

Written By: - Date published: 2:47 pm, September 13th, 2011 - 8 comments

A good piece in the Herald by Max Rashbrook on the high costs of PPPs (public private partnerships) with the new Wiri prison costing over $21m before a single sod is turned or brick laid because of the complex contract negotiatons which have to cover every possible continency for the next 30 years. Earlier this […]

Human face of public service cuts

Written By: - Date published: 3:00 pm, August 30th, 2011 - 41 comments

Good human interest story in the DomPost today about the human costs of public service jobs cuts. A Wellington woman has written a letter to Prime Minister John after her 63-year-old mother learned last week that her position at the Agriculture and Forestry Ministry is to be axed. Staffing cuts after a merger with the Fisheries […]

What we owe policy wonks

Written By: - Date published: 1:35 pm, August 26th, 2011 - 21 comments

Yesterday William commented to Cuts and Consequences to the effect that who needs policy analyst and that big private companies don’t bother with them and so neither should government. I’m paraphrasing a little bit but it did strike me that many people (including it seems some very senior ministers in this government – but not – funnily enough […]

Cuts and consequences

Written By: - Date published: 12:10 pm, August 25th, 2011 - 23 comments

The government reckons it can cut the number of public sector workers without cutting services. That wasn’t the experience of the 80s and 90s when vital institutional knowledge and expertise were lost in a frenzy of asset sales,  privatisation and brutal job cuts– when public service numbers dropped from around 85,000 public servants  to under  30,000 […]

PSA launches myth busting campaign

Written By: - Date published: 10:56 am, August 2nd, 2011 - 57 comments

The PSA is launching its election campaign this evening.   Our big challenge is to break through the government’s narrative (now reaching  mythic proportions)  that NZ is sinking under debt the likes of Greece  tooand the only solution is to cut public spending and sell assets. As the well informed readers of The Standard know, NZ’s […]

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Government support for Levin community hit by tornado
    The Government is contributing $100,000 to a Mayoral Relief Fund to help the Levin community following this morning’s tornado, Minister for Emergency Management Kiri Allan says. “My thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by severe weather events in Levin and across the country. “I know the tornado has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Statement from the Quintet of Attorneys General in support of Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova a...
    The Quintet of Attorneys General have issued the following statement of support for the Prosecutor General of Ukraine and investigations and prosecutions for crimes committed during the Russian invasion of Ukraine: “The Attorneys General of the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand join in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Andrew Little Budget 2022 post-Budget health speech, Auckland, 20 May 2022
    Morena tatou katoa. Kua tae mai i runga i te kaupapa o te rā. Thank you all for being here today. Yesterday my colleague, the Minister of Finance Grant Robertson, delivered the Wellbeing Budget 2022 – for a secure future for New Zealand. I’m the Minister of Health, and this was ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Govt helps supermarket shoppers get a fair deal
    Urgent Budget night legislation to stop major supermarkets blocking competitors from accessing land for new stores has been introduced today, Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Dr David Clark said. The Commerce (Grocery Sector Covenants) Amendment Bill amends the Commerce Act 1986, banning restrictive covenants on land, and exclusive covenants ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Prime Minister: Wellbeing Budget 2022 speech
    It is a pleasure to speak to this Budget. The 5th we have had the privilege of delivering, and in no less extraordinary circumstances.  Mr Speaker, the business and cycle of Government is, in some ways, no different to life itself. Navigating difficult times, while also making necessary progress. Dealing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Future resource management system implementation funding
    Budget 2022 provides funding to implement the new resource management system, building on progress made since the reform was announced just over a year ago. The inadequate funding for the implementation of the Resource Management Act in 1992 almost guaranteed its failure. There was a lack of national direction about ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Funding certainty for quality public media
    The Government is substantially increasing the amount of funding for public media to ensure New Zealanders can continue to access quality local content and trusted news. “Our decision to create a new independent and future-focused public media entity is about achieving this objective, and we will support it with a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Funding boost secures Defence capabilities
    $662.5 million to maintain existing defence capabilities NZDF lower-paid staff will receive a salary increase to help meet cost-of living pressures. Budget 2022 sees significant resources made available for the Defence Force to maintain existing defence capabilities as it looks to the future delivery of these new investments. “Since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2022 supports resilient and sustainable cultural sector
    More than $185 million to help build a resilient cultural sector as it continues to adapt to the challenges coming out of COVID-19. Support cultural sector agencies to continue to offer their important services to New Zealanders. Strengthen support for Māori arts, culture and heritage. The Government is investing in a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Minister of Finance: Wellbeing Budget 2022 Speech
    It is my great pleasure to present New Zealand’s fourth Wellbeing Budget. In each of this Government’s three previous Wellbeing Budgets we have not only considered the performance of our economy and finances, but also the wellbeing of our people, the health of our environment and the strength of our communities. In Budget ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Wellbeing Budget 2022 Speech
    It is my great pleasure to present New Zealand’s fourth Wellbeing Budget. In each of this Government’s three previous Wellbeing Budgets we have not only considered the performance of our economy and finances, but also the wellbeing of our people, the health of our environment and the strength of our communities. In Budget ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Coronial delays addressed by Budget 2022
    Four new permanent Coroners to be appointed Seven Coronial Registrar roles and four Clinical Advisor roles are planned to ease workload pressures Budget 2022 delivers a package of investment to improve the coronial system and reduce delays for grieving families and whānau. “Operating funding of $28.5 million over four ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Paving the way for better outcomes for disabled people
    Establishment of Ministry for Disabled People Progressing the rollout of the Enabling Good Lives approach to Disability Support Services to provide self-determination for disabled people Extra funding for disability support services “Budget 2022 demonstrates the Government’s commitment to deliver change for the disability community with the establishment of a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Investing in education so all Kiwis can succeed
    Fairer Equity Funding system to replace school deciles The largest step yet towards Pay Parity in early learning Local support for schools to improve teaching and learning A unified funding system to underpin the Reform of Vocational Education Boost for schools and early learning centres to help with cost ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Primary sector backed to grow and innovate
    $118.4 million for advisory services to support farmers, foresters, growers and whenua Māori owners to accelerate sustainable land use changes and lift productivity  $40 million to help transformation in the forestry, wood processing, food and beverage and fisheries sectors  $31.6 million to help maintain and lift animal welfare practices across Aotearoa New Zealand A total food and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • More support for first home buyers and renters
    House price caps for First Home Grants increased in many parts of the country House price caps for First Home Loans removed entirely Kāinga Whenua Loan cap will also be increased from $200,000 to $500,000 The Affordable Housing Fund to initially provide support for not-for-profit rental providers Significant additional ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Budget lifts up to 14,000 children out of poverty
    Child Support rules to be reformed lifting an estimated 6,000 to 14,000 children out of poverty Support for immediate and essential dental care lifted from $300 to $1,000 per year Increased income levels for hardship assistance to extend eligibility Budget 2022 takes further action to reduce child poverty and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • A booster for RNA research and development
    More support for RNA research through to pilot manufacturing RNA technology platform to be created to facilitate engagement between research and industry partners Researchers and businesses working in the rapidly developing field of RNA technology will benefit from a new research and development platform, funded in Budget 2022. “RNA ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Unleashing business potential across NZ
    A new Business Growth Fund to support small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to grow Fully funding the Regional Strategic Partnership Fund to unleash regional economic development opportunities Tourism Innovation Programme to promote sustainable recovery Eight Industry Transformation Plans progressed to work with industries, workers and iwi to transition ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Securing the wellbeing of Pacific communities
    Budget 2022 further strengthens the economic foundations and wellbeing outcomes for Pacific peoples in Aotearoa, as the recovery from COVID-19 continues. “The priorities we set for Budget 2022 will support the continued delivery of our commitments for Pacific peoples through the Pacific Wellbeing Strategy, a 2020 manifesto commitment for Pacific ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government delivers timely support for whānau
    Boost for Māori economic and employment initiatives. More funding for Māori health and wellbeing initiatives Further support towards growing language, culture and identity initiatives to deliver on our commitment to Te Reo Māori in Education  Funding for natural environment and climate change initiatives to help farmers, growers and whenua ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government delivers critical infrastructure
    New hospital funding for Whangārei, Nelson and Hillmorton 280 more classrooms over 40 schools, and money for new kura $349 million for more rolling stock and rail network investment The completion of feasibility studies for a Northland dry dock and a new port in the Manukau Harbour Increased infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • A health system that takes care of Māori
    $168 million to the Māori Health Authority for direct commissioning of services $20.1 million to support Iwi-Māori Partnership Boards $30 million to support Māori primary and community care providers $39 million for Māori health workforce development Budget 2022 invests in resetting our health system and gives economic security in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Investing in better health services
    Biggest-ever increase to Pharmac’s medicines budget Provision for 61 new emergency vehicles including 48 ambulances, along with 248 more paramedics and other frontline staff New emergency helicopter and crew, and replacement of some older choppers $100 million investment in specialist mental health and addiction services 195,000 primary and intermediate aged ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • A Secure Future for New Zealanders’ health
    Landmark reform: new multi-year budgets for better planning and more consistent health services Record ongoing annual funding boost for Health NZ to meet cost pressures and start with a clean slate as it replaces fragmented DHB system ($1.8 billion year one, as well as additional $1.3 billion in year ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Cost of living package eases impact on households – 2.1 million Kiwis to get new targeted payment
    Fuel Excise Duty and Road User Charges cut to be extended for two months Half price public transport extended for a further two months New temporary cost of living payment for people earning up to $70,000 who are not eligible to receive the Winter Energy Payment Estimated 2.1 million New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Budget highlights underlying strength of economy in face of global headwinds
    A return to surplus in 2024/2025 Unemployment rate projected to remain at record lows Net debt forecast to peak at 19.9 percent of GDP in 2024, lower than Australia, US, UK and Canada Economic growth to hit 4.2 percent in 2023 and average 2.1 percent over the forecast period A ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2022: A secure future in difficult times
    Cost of living payment to cushion impact of inflation for 2.1 million Kiwis Record health investment including biggest ever increase to Pharmac’s medicines budget First allocations from Climate Emergency Response Fund contribute to achieving the goals in the first Emissions Reduction Plan Government actions deliver one of the strongest ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2022: A secure future
    Budget 2022 will help build a high wage, low emissions economy that provides greater economic security, while providing support to households affected by cost of living pressures. Our economy has come through the COVID-19 shock better than almost anywhere else in the world, but other challenges, both long-term and more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Health Minister to attend World Health Assembly in Geneva
    Health Minister Andrew Little will represent New Zealand at the first in-person World Health Assembly since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, to be held in Geneva, Switzerland, from Sunday 22 – Wednesday 25 May (New Zealand time). “COVID-19 has affected people all around the world, and health continues to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New efforts to counter illegal timber trade
    New Zealand is committing to trade only in legally harvested timber with the Forests (Legal Harvest Assurance) Amendment Bill introduced to Parliament today. Under the Bill, timber harvested in New Zealand and overseas, and used in products made here or imported, will have to be verified as being legally harvested. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Deaths in New Zealand lower than expected so far during the pandemic
    The Government has welcomed the release today of StatsNZ data showing the rate at which New Zealanders died from all causes during the COVID-19 pandemic has been lower than expected. The new StatsNZ figures provide a measure of the overall rate of deaths in New Zealand during the pandemic compared ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New law helps secure New Zealand’s maritime domain
    Legislation that will help prevent serious criminal offending at sea, including trafficking of humans, drugs, wildlife and arms, has passed its third reading in Parliament today, Foreign Affairs Nanaia Mahuta announced. “Today is a milestone in allowing us to respond to the increasingly dynamic and complex maritime security environment facing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Trade and Export Growth Minister to travel to Bangkok for APEC
    Trade and Export Growth Minister Damien O’Connor is set to travel to Thailand this week to represent New Zealand at the annual APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade (MRT) meeting in Bangkok. “I’m very much looking forward to meeting my trade counterparts at APEC 2022 and building on the achievements we ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government welcomes historic pay-equity deal
    Settlement of the first pay-equity agreement in the health sector is hugely significant, delivering pay rises of thousands of dollars for many hospital administration and clerical workers, Health Minister Andrew Little says. “There is no place in 21st century Aotearoa New Zealand for 1950s attitudes to work predominantly carried out ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government delivers new ICU space at Christchurch Hospital
    Health Minister Andrew Little opened a new intensive care space for up to 12 ICU-capable beds at Christchurch Hospital today, funded from the Government’s Rapid Hospital Improvement Programme. “I’m pleased to help mark this milestone. This new space will provide additional critical care support for the people of Canterbury and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Next steps for specialist mental health and addiction services
    Budget 2022 will continue to deliver on Labour’s commitment to better services and support for mental wellbeing. The upcoming Budget will include a $100-million investment over four years for a specialist mental health and addiction package, including: $27m for community-based crisis services that will deliver a variety of intensive supports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • 195,000 children set to benefit from more mental health support
    Budget 2022 will continue to deliver on Labour’s commitment to better mental wellbeing services and support, with 195,000 primary and intermediate aged children set to benefit from the continuation and expansion of Mana Ake services. “In Budget 2022 Labour will deliver on its manifesto commitment to expand Mana Ake, with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Belarusian leaders and defence entities targeted under latest round of sanctions
    Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta has today announced sanctions on Belarusian leaders and defence entities supporting Russia’s actions in Ukraine, as part of the Government’s ongoing response to the war. “The Belarusian government military is enabling the illegal and unacceptable assault on Ukraine’s sovereignty,” Nanaia Mahuta said.  “Under the leadership of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Queen's Platinum Jubilee Tree planting event at Government House
    Just after World War 2, there were incentives to clear forest and bring land into agricultural production. In places, the land had been stripped bare as forests were felled for sheep grazing. Today, you only have to look at the hills around Taihape and see the stumps of a once ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago