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Author Archive

Charlie Hebdo: ‘… and not give in to fear’

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, January 8th, 2015 - 596 comments

It is a shocking story to wake up to. A murderous act in a beautiful city.  Condolences to those close to the people who were killed, and to the people of Paris and France.  It is not a justification for the anti-democratic, invasive extensions to the surveillance state.

‘The future will be green or not at all’

Written By: - Date published: 9:41 am, January 2nd, 2015 - 275 comments

Yesterday, on Outspoken at RNZ, Craig McCulloch interviewed Jeanette Fitzsimons, Gareth Morgan and Metiria Turei on the future of the Green Party. Morgan wants the Greens to shift away from “scary” economic policies.  Turei and Fitzsimons explain why not.

Songs for the New Year – summertime!

Written By: - Date published: 9:11 am, January 1st, 2015 - 35 comments

Happy New Year! Some songs for the times.

Top MP tweeters ….?

Written By: - Date published: 9:54 am, December 29th, 2014 - 27 comments

Claire Trevett in the NZ Herald has an article on her chosen top MP tweeters, now that Judith Collins has vacated her (alleged) position as “Minister of Twitter” Not quite my list of top tweeters… and yours?

If the voice fits….?

Written By: - Date published: 10:06 am, December 27th, 2014 - 237 comments

Politics has traditionally been men’s business.  Gradually women have come to be given more space in this sphere of public activity.  However, there are still strains of traditional masculine values evident in political activity, organisation and debate.  How much does Key trade in
bloke-iness?

Europe & the anti-austerity left

Written By: - Date published: 9:42 am, December 24th, 2014 - 28 comments

The UK Green Party is gaining in popularity as many people turn away from the 3 established parties.  The radical left Syriza party in Greece could possibly gain power in their election – what powerful international right wing forces would then be unleashed?

Thumbs down for Joyce’s ministerial domain

Written By: - Date published: 8:23 am, December 22nd, 2014 - 33 comments

A new report shows that Steven Joyce’s MBIE fiefdom is failing miserably.  Meanwhile the MBIE is under fire for the major cost blow out of the Sky City Casino deal – another deal with Joyce’s imprints all over it.

Power poverty on the up

Written By: - Date published: 8:18 am, December 19th, 2014 - 56 comments

The government has failed to tackle NZ’s on-going housing crisis. Fuel/energy poverty is increasing, with a higher proportion of households unable to afford any heating.  More Kiwis are renting than in the 2006 census, & more Aucklanders live in over-crowded households.

‘Ditch the [misleading] rhetoric’

Written By: - Date published: 9:39 am, December 12th, 2014 - 16 comments

On RNZ this morning PSA National Secretary Richard Wagstaff criticised Bill English for his misleading rhetoric about rises in “average wages”.  NZ’s income and wealth gaps have increased in recent decades.  The lowest income remain low; the top earners get big salary increases.

Save Our State Houses: Labour Party

Written By: - Date published: 8:26 am, November 28th, 2014 - 12 comments

Kevin Hague says, the government’s plan to replace state housing with “social housing” will make the affordable housing crisis worse & is “economically reckless”. The Labour Party have circulated a petition to save state houses from being sold by the NZ government.

’81: knowing your position

Written By: - Date published: 9:21 am, November 22nd, 2014 - 103 comments

Andrea Vance has written an informative article about Andrew Little.  In it, among other things, we learn that Little remembers exactly which side he was on during the 1981 Springbok rugby tour.

Lessons from the ’30s and 40’s: culture and the left

Written By: - Date published: 2:05 pm, November 10th, 2014 - 70 comments

We often look to the first Labour Government for core left wing values, & a political way forward.  As well as massively restructuring of the NZ economy, work, welfare & housing, that Government aimed to restructure NZ culture & to combat capitalist-dominated popular culture.

“Marching in the streets”

Written By: - Date published: 5:15 pm, November 8th, 2014 - 128 comments

Thousands of people protested and marched around the country against the secret and anti-democratic TPPA negotiations. Reports & pics. Updated

Turei for peace & freedom: rejects politics of fear

Written By: - Date published: 3:00 pm, November 5th, 2014 - 101 comments

Metiria Turei delivered a very strong speech in response to Key’s ministerial statement on national security.  I give her a standing ovation! Update #1: link to video of Turei’s speech. #2 -YT video Turei’s speech.  Link to Kennedy Garham’s speech

Campbell Live on ‘Feed the Kids Bill’

Written By: - Date published: 11:24 am, November 5th, 2014 - 14 comments

The main message from Campbell Live last night is we really need the “Feed the Kids” Bill to pass it’s first reading: then the Bill will go to Select Committee, so everyone can have a conversation. Update: reading postponed ‘cos Key’s war statement debate gets priority.

Gough 1916-2014

Written By: - Date published: 11:49 am, October 21st, 2014 - 46 comments

When Gough Whitlam was PM of Austrialia, it was a time when people were looking forward to a more inclusive, caring, and egalitarian society: a time of hope.  His PM-ship ended in controversy.

The 4th estate & its pretenders

Written By: - Date published: 10:59 am, October 19th, 2014 - 63 comments

Some journalists continue to try to fulfill the fourth estate ideal of pursuing truth & speaking truth to power.  Others, with powerful links to corporate media & governments, work to suppress debate and democracy, often using threats, abusive nastiness & fear mongering.

The power & the pressure

Written By: - Date published: 11:00 am, October 14th, 2014 - 115 comments

We need a new green left direction, now and for the future.  A future Labour-Green-Mana coalition government could provide such a direction.  The original NZ Values Party Manifesto provides an important Blueprint.

The long reach of “5 Eyes”: re-post

Written By: - Date published: 11:52 am, October 6th, 2014 - 14 comments

With Chris Finlayson just announced as minister in charge of GCSB & SIS, I thought it appropriate to re-post something I published on The Standard back in July 2013: links 5 Eyes’ attorney generals, cyber-security, Dotcom, etc.

Unaffordable housing & the culture of greed

Written By: - Date published: 11:17 am, October 4th, 2014 - 42 comments

Rental housing remains unaffordable for many.  The problem is the greed of investors & speculators,  supported by a culture in which housing investment is seen as a way to individual prosperity.

First they sold Auckland, then the rest of NZ…?

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, October 3rd, 2014 - 28 comments

A quiet shift in a dodgy Key govt-SkyCity deal: TVNZ land, sold to SkyCity for its convention centre, is to be used for a new hotel.  Plus: non-mandated deal between Auckland Transport Authority & a US corporate – intense surveillance of Aucklanders’ diverse activities.

For all our futures

Written By: - Date published: 7:13 pm, September 23rd, 2014 - 16 comments

With massive demonstrations across the world urging the UN & governments to do very much more to counter climate change, Al Jazeera’s Inside Story covers the demos and examines the issues.

Clean it up

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, September 23rd, 2014 - 70 comments

Action Station has a full page ad in today’s NZ Herald, asking to clean up dirty politics. Dirty Politics is not any isolated attack politics or criticism of those in power.  It is a relentless two track strategy, an orchestrated smear machine, aimed at moving politics rightwards & disengaging (left wing) voters. Update: Hager comments on the election.

My morning thoughts on the night before

Written By: - Date published: 9:20 am, September 21st, 2014 - 34 comments

It will take a flax roots, bottom-up, community-based movement to rebuild democracy and a fair, caring and sustainable society.

Green Watch

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 pm, September 20th, 2014 - 43 comments

I am hoping for a good proportion of the vote for the Green Party.  They got !!% of the vote in 2011, resulting in them having 14 MPs. Updated

The tweets are alive….

Written By: - Date published: 9:48 am, September 19th, 2014 - 5 comments

… with pre-election day fervour. It’s an election that’s going down to the wire.  The energy is there for the left to keep talking to people, and to encourage as many as possible to get out and vote. It’s Suffrage Day – reporting via the telegraph in 1893 to the internet today. On-going updates

Greens buoyant

Written By: - Date published: 5:53 pm, September 18th, 2014 - 14 comments

John Key & National’s empty facade – its lack of vision for NZ – has been exposed. Opposition parties have continued to campaign positively, focusing on people, fairness, & the environment. [Update] NZ Herald video

The email

Written By: - Date published: 2:57 pm, September 15th, 2014 - 140 comments

The email that alleges to show John key was in on a conspiracy, with Hollywood execs, to entrap Dotcom in NZ so they could extradite him to the US. Updated. Warners say the email is fake. But who was applying the “political pressure”? Updated: Cameron Slater is a techno idiot.

The enablers

Written By: - Date published: 12:30 pm, September 15th, 2014 - 14 comments

Under pressure from Glenn Greenwald’s revelations, John Key, using various smoke screens, is starting to reveal his complicity in working with the GCSB & its 5 Eyes partners, to extend the scope of their spying. Could the Southern Cross Cable Network not have known their systems had been tapped? Update: Statement by Southern Cross Cables

Nat two track strategy – March to Sept

Written By: - Date published: 9:58 am, September 13th, 2014 - 26 comments

Nicky Hager has exposed the two track strategy of the Whale Oil, Kiwiblog, Nat smear machine.  Why is it allowed to continue?

The extent of public interest hacking?

Written By: - Date published: 11:46 am, September 10th, 2014 - 35 comments

Last year, there was a major hack, in which data from some GCSB staff, parliamentary staff, police, & others were copied & stored in various places globally.  Surveillance technologies can be used by both state agencies and its critics. Update: Some 2013 history & Anonymous

 

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  • Legislative changes to support the wellbeing of veterans and their families
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has welcomed the First Reading of a Bill that will make legislative changes to further improve the veterans’ support system.  The Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill No 2, which will amend the Veterans’ Support Act 2014, passed First Reading today. The bill addresses a number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Christ Church Cathedral – Order in Council
    Views sought on Order in Council to help fast track the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Hon Poto Williams, will be seeking public written comment, following Cabinet approving the drafting of an Order in Council aimed at fast-tracking the reinstatement of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealanders’ human rights better protected in new Bill
    The law setting out New Zealanders’ basic civil and human rights is today one step towards being strengthened following the first reading of a Bill that requires Parliament to take action if a court says a statute undermines those rights. At present, a senior court can issue a ‘declaration of ...
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    1 week ago
  • Deep concern at Hong Kong national security legislation
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today reiterated the deep concern of the New Zealand Government following confirmation by China’s National People’s Congress of national security legislation relating to Hong Kong. “New Zealand shares the international community’s significant and long-standing stake in Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability,” Mr Peters said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government invests in New Zealand’s cultural recovery
    Thousands of artists and creatives at hundreds of cultural and heritage organisations have been given much-needed support to recover from the impact of COVID-19, Prime Minister and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Jacinda Ardern announced today. “The cultural sector was amongst the worst hit by the global pandemic,” Jacinda ...
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    1 week ago
  • Better protection for New Zealand assets during COVID-19 crisis
    Key New Zealand assets will be better protected from being sold to overseas owners in a way contrary to the national interest, with the passage of the Overseas Investment (Urgent Measures) Bill. The Bill, which passed its third reading in Parliament today, also cuts unnecessary red tape to help attract ...
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    1 week ago
  • Cleaning up our rivers and lakes
    Setting higher health standards at swimming spots Requiring urban waterways to be cleaned up and new protections for urban streams Putting controls on higher-risk farm practices such as winter grazing and feed lots Setting stricter controls on nitrogen pollution and new bottom lines on other measures of waterway health Ensuring ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Record year for diversity on Govt boards
    The Government is on the verge of reaching its target of state sector boards and committees made up of at least 50 percent women, says Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter and Minister for Ethnic Communities Jenny Salesa. For the first time, the Government stocktake measures the number of Māori, ...
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    1 week ago