Bennett faces petition and protest over historical allegations

Written By: - Date published: 6:29 am, August 7th, 2017 - 126 comments
Categories: accountability, paula bennett - Tags: , ,

Update May 3 2018: Dirty Politics operative Matthew Hooton is desperately searching The Standard looking for some kind of false equivalence with the filthy lies about Clarke Gayford. As you will this post contains nothing that was not being publicly commented on in the media at the time. Original post below:


In all sorts of ways – Paula Bennett is trouble for the National Party

Last month allegations were made against Paula Bennett that she felt necessary to shut down with legal threats – Retired judge warns public after Paula Bennett threatens lawsuit over online post

There is now a change.org petition with over 15,000 signatures – Paula Bennett Winz Allegations Inquiry “There should be an inquiry of ex winz beneficiary Paula Bennett and the allegations made surrounding her stint on the benefit”.

According to this tweet Ashley Farrell is going to stage a protest outside Bennett’s office, starting today:
https://twitter.com/dfrancishirst/status/893232874010288129

No doubt those purity pledge campaigners who rained stones on Metiria Turei will be just as keen to get to the bottom of all this, and no doubt Paula Bennett will be keen to take personal responsibility and clear her name.

126 comments on “Bennett faces petition and protest over historical allegations ”

  1. Ed 1

    Messes Gower, Garner, Hosking, Soper and Richardson- here is an opportunity to balance your bile.

  2. yep, ex/current beneficiary bashing – a sport we can all play. sad.

    • simonm 2.1

      In the case of Paula Bennett it’s current hypocrite bashing. Give it go – it’s really fun!

  3. red-blooded 3

    I think this is a poor choice from people who say we should stand up for beneficiaries, understand how tough it is to live on a benefit and show empathy towards people who may have lied to WINZ in order to survive and work towards lifting themselves out of poverty in the past.

    Bennett is appalling, but if we’re trying to call her out for hypocrisy by being hypocritical ourselves that seems like a flawed approach to me.

    • Carolyn_nth 3.1

      On this I agree with you, and with marty.

      Better to focus critical energies on Nats’ and Bennett’s damaging policies.

      • weka 3.1.1

        +4

        If the MSM go hard after Bennett on this with that being sanctioned by people on the left, then that will entrench another layer of legitimacy to the bigotry.

      • adam 3.1.2

        It’s not just policy, it’s the economic model which underpins the rhetoric which is the key problem.

    • Ad 3.2

      +100

      Way to win this campaign is not by continuing down a very dark road.

    • jacqueline 3.3

      If she wasn’t the mp that made so many solo parents lives so impossible some have ended their lives I see your point. .. The sins I judge Paula on are the actions she has take since being in charge
      it’s not right to compare her with Metiera. .. One did it tough, went into politics to change it for the better the other for the worse

    • jacqueline smith 3.4

      If she wasn’t the mp that made so many solo parents lives so impossible some have ended their lives I see your point. .. The sins I judge Paula on are the actions she has take since being in charge
      it’s not right to compare her with Metiera. .. One did it tough, went into politics to change it for the better the other for the worse

  4. Jeremy 4

    Can Mr. Farrell give his evidence to WINZ to get the investigation started?

  5. Johan 5

    “Revenge is a dish best served cold”.

  6. DH 6

    I think it wiser to steer clear of this one. Double standards are not pretty.

    • Muttonbird 6.1

      Isn’t this an attempt to hold Bennett to the same standard to which Turei has been held?

      • weka 6.1.1

        Turei is being held to a standard created by bigots, and that is furthering discrimination against beneficiaries as a class and as individuals.

        • Alex 6.1.1.1

          Turei is being held to the standards that she has routinely and extremely vocally insisted upon for other MP’s.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.1.1.1

            Really? Can you point to an example of Turei demanding someone’s resignation for something they did twenty years ago?

            Didn’t think so.

            • Alex 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Your 20 year comment is not the way I think about it at all. Todd Barclay is an example from less than a month ago of a person that Turei was criticising for decisions he made in his mid-20’s.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Lowlife Barclay broke the law as an MP, less than two years ago.

                Obviously that isn’t the way you “think” about it. Anything else would contradict your scriptwriters.

                • Jonman

                  Actually, Barclay broke no law. The police investigated and felt there was no case to prosecute. The independent police complaints authority reviewed this decision and upheld it.

                  • McFlock

                    And jack the ripper broke no law, because the police looked into it and couldn’t press charges against anyone.

                  • lprent

                    *sigh* You can’t say that unless you are legally an idiot – as you have always appeared to be to me. (we are getting some stupid trolls back again)

                    It has never been tested if he broke a law. Apparently because Barclay refused to talk to the police and because of that the police decided that they didn’t have sufficient evidence to lay a charge and be reasonably confident that they could make it stick.

                    The IPCA doesn’t review decisions. It reviews the process. Because Barclay was so confident about his legal position he refused to talk to the police and therefore the process was stalled.

                    However, happy news. In the light of new evidence coming to light after some very strong lights were aimed at the case, the police have reopened their case to see if there is enough evidence to lay charges now. This time it is possible that the police may lay charges and we may find out if the courts think that any laws were broken.

                    Wouldn’t that be a nice change. Of course the police are always reluctant to prosecute anyone who has good lawyers. Bearing in mind the Bill English appears to be in up to his neck in come kind of coverup, I am sure that National will have the best lawyers around.

              • Kevin

                English and Key, both committed the same electoral fraud. You calling for English’s resignation?

              • “Your 20 year comment is not the way I think about it at all.”
                Of course it isn’t.To think that way would ruin the hunt at the start – tally-ho, chaps!

            • Makinoria Davis 6.1.1.1.1.2

              No of course Metiria isn’t demanding that, she went into this with the sole intention of helping beneficiaries that are being forced to live on a pittance that’s barely survivable! Not to gun down another M.P for their shortcomings. If Paula has nothing to hide why isn’t she stepping up to be heard? She has suddenly melted into the background hoping the Focus on Metiria will keep the spotlight off her, when all its doing is emphasizing her questionable silence even more.

          • weka 6.1.1.1.2

            “Turei is being held to the standards that she has routinely and extremely vocally insisted upon for other MP’s.”

            Turei has said don’t go after Bennett.

            • Alex 6.1.1.1.2.1

              What possible reason would anyone have to ‘go after Bennett’ for benefit fraud?
              Just because a bunch of vindictive petitioners with no evidence or admission of fraud from Bennett want to attack her? Come on …

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                This again.

                They will have the “evidence” of their own statements. Whether sufficient for a reasonable minded person to convict on is another matter.

                “I don’t have a lot of time for the woman, for her to be doing what she’s doing now, and what she’s done.”

                Billy Sherman.

                Perhaps that might answer your question as to why someone would go after her: they don’t like her very much.

                I say leave the vindictive hate squads to the National Party.

      • DH 6.1.2

        “Isn’t this an attempt to hold Bennett to the same standard to which Turei has been held?”

        Not by people here. If we’re to forgive Metiria, which most us here would, then it would behoove us to forgive Bennett for similar acts. We’re not a lynch mob… at least I would hope we’re not.

        • Molly 6.1.2.1

          It is reasonable to “forgive” (prefer understand myself) any beneficiary for any actions they may take when the benefit level is inadequate, and system is both flawed and malicious. As it remains today.

          What is unforgivable is a Minister who despite all evidence provided by research and study, and added to by her own personal experience – has both facilitated further hardship, and participated in both personal attacks and general dismissal of beneficiaries.

          She should be held account for that. It is up to our current opposition to make this distinction clear.

          I can also understand the reasoning behind those who have signed the petition. We don’t need to redirect that energy or dismiss it, our opposition politicians need to harness the intent and momentum, explain it and put it in context.

        • stigie 6.1.2.2

          Oh, how big of you, what was Bennett suppose to have done again ?

          Thought so, mindless allegations !

      • Chch_chiquita 6.1.3

        It is for those who are calling for Turei to resign, not those who are saying we are shooting the messenger instead of listening to the message.

        Those calling to forgive people for what they have done 20 years ago out of desperation and listen to the plight of beneficiaries should ask to give Bennett the same forgiveness but hold her to account for pulling the ladder behind her instead of using her position to better people in the same situation she was at.

  7. Glenn 7

    Bennett will never climb higher than she is now. She is spoiled goods.
    Collins will be rejoicing.

  8. One Anonymous Bloke 8

    Well done everyone who pointed out that going after Bennett in this way is a double standard.

    Go after her for kicking the ladder, and her personal responsibility for the increase in homelessness and suicide instead.

    • weka 8.1

      This.

    • Yes. We can’t put up posts saying it’s terrible that people are trying to dig up dirt on Turei and then wholeheartedly endorse a ducking-stool experience for Paula Bennett.

      We can, however, continue to point out that she removed the training provision she’d used herself to lift her out of poverty, and that she egregiously breached the privacy of people who dared to complain about it.

      • Akldnut 8.2.1

        Bennetts non-committal comment about Metira being penalised spoke volumes to me, she is an attack dog that will jump at the chance to ravage an opponent.

        So looking at the possibility that the system may have been worked by herself or any other MP or person should be the only reason that we would be wanting this to happen.

        After scrutiny if anyone has been found to have done the same or something similar then the system should be chasing them with the same gusto and the attack media should be serving the same scrutiny to them all.
        Even though I personally can’t stand her smugness and arrogance, this to me is more about ownership of wrongdoing and tightening up on MP’s accountability and reporting.

  9. dukeofurl 9

    Cant someone be poring through ‘ habitation indexes’ from the 90s to see where Bennett was living and with whom ?

    We do know that Key was living someplace different to where he said on the electoral roll. And English hadnt moved at all, but was using fancy tricks to make out he was a fresh arrival in Wellington.

  10. savenz 10

    For those that think giving Paula ‘a break’ because it’s beneficiary bashing, I say maybe if Paula and the National party experiences the culture she and they have created and used to get more votes as well as knocking down the Greens over their expose… about time we had a WINZ system that is equal. Even if you are deputy PM.

    It is even worse, when Paula has been the one flaming the witch hunt against beneficiaries with WINZ ‘targets’ and flimsy evidence being used against vulnerable people who are actually going to jail, with their kids into care, for this so called crime.

    The more publicity for Paula and an enquiry the better, as the beneficiary system and it’s bizarre rules are exposed.

    • dukeofurl 10.1

      Yes , the arguments can be framed around ‘politicians doing one thing while on benefit themselves while saying another when they are in a position to change things.
      Thats where Metira’s approach is different to that of Bennett

      The blame shouldnt be on the circumstances at the time, it should be focused on the political actions 20 plus years later.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 10.2

      Well if we’re visiting their misery on them, why stop at an investigation? Why not go the whole hog and confiscate everything they own, throw them out on the street and drive them to suicide or hypothermia?

      Or should we treat them as though they too have human rights?

    • weka 10.3

      It’s not about giving Bennett a break, it’s about not stigmatising beneficiaries further and not legitimising bene bashing. You may feel that it’s morally right to support attacks on Bennett, and I can guarantee you that the right feel it’s morally right to attack Turei and all other beneficiaries as they see fit.

      • red-blooded 10.3.1

        And, quite simply, about living by the standards we require others to live by. If we condemn people for knocking Turei, we can’t do the same to other ex-beneficiaries (or current ones).

    • AsleepWhileWalking 10.4

      The determination of relationship in the nature of marriage will be particularly enlightening for the general public to hear about.

  11. AsleepWhileWalking 11

    MT is likely to be charged if at all possible,

    It isn’t a double standard to come out in support of MT, and then upon finding MSD taking action call upon PB to have the same thing done. I certainly won’t apologise for it.

    Yes it is likely brutal for PB but perhaps a prosecution (if appropriate) would wake people the hell up.

    Our over zealous prosecutions for welfare fraud are making criminals out of otherwise good people. A better use of resources would be making sure people have what they need to begin with – a policy level decision.

    • weka 11.1

      If PB gets prosecuted it will entrench bene bashing in ways we haven’t seen before. What on earth makes you think that bigots are suddenly going to feel compassion for beneficiaries just because one of their own got caught too?

      And it’s not about concern for Bennett, it’s concern for beneficiaries.

      • weka 11.1.1

        And if you feel ok calling on the MSD to go after Bennett, I assume you support the MSD going after other beneficiaries. That’s fucked.

        • AsleepWhileWalking 11.1.1.1

          It is already entrenched.

          I advocate for people in the system so I’ve seen what kind of hell they end up in and I know first hand how stressful an interview with MSD is even when you have done nothing wrong. I have seen them crying in despair

          What will be extremely offensive to me is that MSD has different standards depending on the political view and position of those under investigation.

          You take a benefit you understand that there are rules you must abide by. That is the law and if it is broken they latch onto you and trawl through your entire life. Afterwards you are deemed a low trust client which means higher levels of control over you than other people.

          I hope that all of this becomes a moot point after the election when changes to our benefit system are made to ensure good people don’t behave like criminals after being placed under high stress and denied what they need to live a dignified life.

          I’m self banning for the day as my view point is likely to inflame discussion even without meaning to. bfn

          • AsleepWhileWalking 11.1.1.1.1

            One last thing I have to say…

            The longer you are on a benefit the more likely you are to be prosecuted of something.

            This is because benefit rates are designed to be short term in nature, in other words you become increasingly run down over time.

            PB got to where she is because she was lucky enough (even without housing loans, Training Incentive Allowance) to be on a much more generous system than we have in place today.

          • garibaldi 11.1.1.1.2

            Wow, there’s powerful argument either way here. AWW raises some very good points, but,yeah, it’s better to live in the now and critique Paula’s current failings.

            • weka 11.1.1.1.2.1

              AWW is saying that the state should penalise some of the most vulnerable people in the country. That’s not a good point.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                I’m not sure AWW said the state should do this. More that this is the status quo.

                • weka

                  They’re arguing it backwards IMO. The more sensible argument is leave Turei alone, not have a go at Bennett too.

          • weka 11.1.1.1.3

            You’re teaching your grandmother to suck eggs in terms of telling me about benefits. But good to know that you support the MSD targeting beneficiaries for historic issues. It’s not only the right that takes this position.

        • KJT 11.1.1.2

          Totally agree. The sooner we have a universal income for all mothers, the better.

          • RedLogix 11.1.1.2.1

            Sighs .. and the one party committed to delivering exactly that?

            • weka 11.1.1.2.1.1

              Would be the party run by Gareth Morgan who thinks it’s ok to replace welfare with a lower UBI.

              • RedLogix

                Would be the party run by Gareth Morgan who thinks it’s ok to replace welfare with a lower UBI and targeted top ups to retain at least existing welfare levels... FIFY

                Of course what you also selectively omit to mention is that many low income households will be much off because non-working partners would receive a UBI, child UBI’s, income taxes on any earned income would be reduced, and TOP’s housing policy not only reduces rents but gives them security of tenure. And more.

                All things you’ve demanded in the past, but because Morgan you can’t play nice. Oh well.

                • weka

                  No, it would be the Gareth Morgan who is clueless about welfare and runs a party making up policy as they go along and which still has major holes in it *because they don’t understand welfare.

                  “Of course what you also selectively omit to mention is that many low income households will be much off because non-working partners would receive a UBI, child UBI’s, income taxes on any earned income would be reduced, and TOP’s housing policy not only reduces rents but gives them security of tenure. And more.”

                  Yes, I get it. Morgan, and presumably yourself, are ok with throwing some vulnerable people under a bus so long as others are better off.

                  “All things you’ve demanded in the past, but because Morgan you can’t play nice. Oh well.”

                  Fuck off Red. You’ve consistently been unable to address the actual points I’ve raised in the past and now all you’ve got left is misrepresenting my arguments. That Morgan can’t play nice is in top of the problems with the policy, as I’ve been clear about ad nauseam.

              • mauī

                “replace welfare with a lower UBI”

                Isn’t the UBI of $200 more than what single beneficiaries are getting now?And it reduces a lot of the stigma and shame around the benefit that we have now too.

    • Gabby 11.2

      Absolutely. If even gifted Pullya couldn’t manage on benefit alone, all the more reason to change it.

      • KJT 11.2.1

        I find it sick, this picking on solo mothers.

        Takes two for starters.

        Secondly it seems to be mostly from the sort of middle aged guys, who spent their teenaged years trying to cause more of them.

        • RedLogix 11.2.1.1

          Absolutely … but the ‘white, middle-aged, male’ trope does get a bit irksome.

          • KJT 11.2.1.1.1

            Well. I am one of them.

            But I am anti getting all self righteous as you get older.

            Like my contempories that go on about boy racers, when i remember them racing us down the Ngatea Straight.

            Or the ones who forget their Friday night pissups and dope, when they sack young people who fail a dope test.

  12. red-blooded 12

    Attack Bennett for her policies – leave her past alone.

    One more thing – I see all this crap as picking on women in particular. How many men get left holding the baby?

    No way will I support this ugliness.

  13. David Mac 13

    Great that so many are looking past the potential fleeting satisfaction of slugging Paula one to see the grand prize. A welfare system that the Paulas And Metiras of our country don’t need to rort to get by.

    Hunting Paula does Metira’s cause no favours.

    If substantiated, leak it to the media and let those guys do what they love to do: Creating headlines and lead stories that can’t be ignored.

    • red-blooded 13.1

      How does that help to counter the narrative that treats beneficiaries as cheats and bludgers?

  14. RedLogix 14

    Paula Bennett will be loving this thread.

    While I simply don’t care what she was up to with the Napier Tattoo Club decades ago; it does seem important to Ashley Farrell. But then he’s only a poor semi-literate white guy and not a Minister of the Crown. Still I agree on balance, PB’s right to privacy as a poor, brown single mother on a benefit probably trumps Farrell’s right to expose her hypocrisy.

    But I’m in no mood to let the bigots and bene-bashers off scott-free either. Nor the cast of fuckers in the MSM who were up on their hind-legs sticking it to Turei, while remaining utterly silent on Bennett. Imagine if Barclay was a Green Party MP … they’d still be hounding him with lead items every other news cycle, over drawing salary while effectively resigned.

    I’d always choose redemption over retribution; the left cannot defend Turei and attack Bennett at the same time. That too would an unsupportable hypocrisy.

    But we can make a point in the present … we’ll happily leave Bennett’s past in the past where it belongs. But in return we get:

    1. A full and complete retraction from the current PM condemning the attacks on Turei, and an offer to support her appointment as a Minister at any time in the future.

    2. A full and complete apology from Paula Bennett for her punitive welfare policies and a political commitment to re-instate the training allowances she cut.

    3. Resignations from Hoskings, Gower and Garner for their gross bias, blatant political double standard and lack of professionalism.

    Or will hell freeze over first?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 14.1

      We can only tackle the bigotry and the bashing if we refuse to indulge in it: your proposed choice/trade-off is whether to surrender or not.

      And why would they resign? From their perspective they just scored a goal for the team.

      No, they won’t surrender either, insofar as authoritarian followers have anything left to surrender.

      • RedLogix 14.1.1

        Exactly. And if we reward their bigotry by never holding them accountable, they will keep doing it.

        They’re already working on how to take out JA.

        That’s the dark issue we’ve never really grappled with. It’s become normalised for National to be venal, lazy, hypocritical cheats. The can have blatant propagandists like Hosking on the public purse. And on and on.

        Yet all this dirty political advantage is reserved for the right. The left is not allowed it, nor wants it.

    • red-blooded 14.2

      Sorry, RedLogix, but that’s just ridiculous. Basically, you’re assuming that any rumours about Bennett are true (they may not be) and that you can blackmail not only her but others who have nothing to do with her because of them.

      1) Why would English support Turei to be a Minister when her party and his are political enemies? He’s got no intention of working with the Greens, they’ve got no intention of working with him; any government that is formed with the Greens will have nothing to do with him. Your demand is nonsensical.

      2) It would be great if Bennett reinstated the training schemes, but even better to just do our best to oust her and her awful party and make the changes ourselves.

      3) Don’t be daft. These people aren’t employed by the Nats and have no reason to resign in order to protect Bennett. (And, BTW, I think you’re being unfair to Gower. He’s a tough interviewer, but I don’t think he’s unbalanced. He’s certainly not a mouthpiece for any particular party.)

      So, yeah, hell will freeze over first.

      • RedLogix 14.2.1

        Yet they would be fair and equitable outcomes, but the fact that you are perfectly correct and they are ridiculous suggestions to contemplate, just underlines how unfair, unjust and inequitable this sordid story is.

        And yes I’m very aware the whole mess around Bennett is just allegations. Still if it were I young woman making unsavoury allegations about a male National MP, I wonder if we’d be quite so hot on defending said MP’s privacy.

      • Carolyn_nth 14.2.2

        You’re correct about Gower not being a mouthpiece for a particular party. He has been both a mouth piece for the Nats and for 3rd wayers within Labour – remember how Cunliffe was treated by Gower?

        However, I’d never describe him as balanced.

  15. KJT 15

    I think we should stop witch hunts period.

    It is not pretty, whichever side do it.

    Except were it affects current actions as an MP.

    I am certainly not going to condemn anyone for being a drunken, party going, sex mad teenager. I was one myself once. Many of the things my teenage self did, make me cringe, now.

    Youngsters should have second chances.

    However, i believe Bennett should be reflecting on the second chance she is removing from so many others. I think their is a bit of projection there. Bennett believes solo mums are all like her past self.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 15.1

      I wonder whether she was in the room when they wrote the policy.

      • greywarshark 15.1.1

        Why can’t people be allowed to have some flaws? What we don’t need and Bennett is so unpopular about is that she wants to behave in the anctimonious Gnashional way, which involved taking a superior tone of someone who has Probity in their very molecules.

        And Metiria is the perfect example of someone who hauled herself (and child) up by her boot-straps when she didn’t have long enough straps. And Red Logix and McFlock having a long debate about it all! When people are being ground down by oppressive laws, by lack of finance at a time when everything is being monetised?

        Good for strong-growers that withstand the frost I say. And I hope that there is money in Maori coffers to help fund keen Maori into study now. It would be sad if the kicking machine (that is the most efficient in the western world, did you know), is still in use against such soft, easy targets, Fit it with titanium paddles and robotise it to smell out RW politicians and give them what they deserve.

    • RedLogix 15.2

      I think we should stop witch hunts period.

      Absolutely. I hate them with a passion and stand on my record here as being reluctant to participate. In any form at all.

      Still us setting an example as saints will have little effect on the bigots unless we stand up to them.

      • McFlock 15.2.1

        But we still need to stand up to them, not stoop down to their level.

        There are so many opportunities to criticise nats in general and bennett in particular. We don’t need to copy their muckraking vindictiveness to do so, especially on the word of one person who seems to me to be more passionate than reliable or verifiable.

        Bennett is an incompetent ladder-kicker who has contempt for the people she is supposed to help. If we need to muckrake in order to win against that, we don’t deserve to win.

        • RedLogix 15.2.1.1

          Absolutely … attacking Ashley Farrell’s credibility is the first thing they’ll do. Probably have the plan in place as we type. Very risky being associated.

          OK … but now more about this ‘standing up to them’. What did you have in mind?

          • McFlock 15.2.1.1.1

            It’s not about being associated with him

            It’s about whether we should be digging up stuff from 20 years ago like they do, and if so then whether what he says is actually what happened.

            As for “standing up to them”: campaigning hard, with good policies and energetic leadership. Holding their current incompetence to account. Unless Bennett’s murdered someone, any scandal from 20 years ago is just a trivial, small-minded distraction.

            • RedLogix 15.2.1.1.1.1

              I’ve ruled out going for Bennett’s past as well.

              But in effect, you’re saying we just keep on doing what we usually do, while rewarding their dirty politics, gross hypocrisy and nasty double standards with a free pass as usual.

              Good oh. That should work.

              • McFlock

                No reward or free pass. Just no wallowing in filth.

                So what less-than-saintly methods of standing up to them are you advocating, then?

                • RedLogix

                  Well keeping mum in order to ‘not wallow in filth’ will amount to a free pass if we do nothing else.

                  Of course winning the election would be one effective response.

                  The other approach would be to shine light on their hypocrisy by openly coming out to defend Bennett’s reasonable right to privacy around her past, pre-political life, while at the same time acknowledging Ashley Farrell’s right to be heard and have his allegations investigated.

                  Then if there was any substance to them, it would be a perfect chance to demonstrate redemption and forgiveness.

                  • McFlock

                    The other approach would be to shine light on their hypocrisy by openly coming out to defend Bennett’s right to privacy, while at the same time acknowledging Ashley Farrell’s right to be heard and have his allegations investigated.

                    Then if there was any substance to them, it would be a perfect chance to demonstrate redemption and forgiveness.

                    To put it bluntly, anyone who gives a shit about something like benefit fraud 20 years after the fact is unlikely to vote Labour, but they will not hesitate to point out your approach as a hypocritical and cynical charade. That will not only validate their own choices, but it will also be a cause for reflection for anyone who wants an honest government. Oh, and it validates those bastards going through everyone’s distant past.

                    So yeah, let’s do other stuff. It might not get us elected, but maybe your approach won’t either. And either way, your way still leaves us smelling like shit.

                    • RedLogix

                      So the free pass then.

                    • McFlock

                      Yes, because “avoiding cynical duplicity” totally equals “free pass” /sarc

                    • RedLogix

                      So when a certain historic figure said ‘let him who is without sin among you cast the first stone’ … this was nothing more than ‘cynical duplicity’?

                      If assuming there is substance here, where is the justice in Bennett having her past kept hidden, when Turei’s was not? If Bennett does have something to answer for, she should do exactly what Turei did, and talk to MSC about putting it right.

                      And the left can with no cynicism whatsoever apply the ancient wisdom above and cast no stones.

                    • McFlock

                      Historical or mythological, he didn’t say “let he who is without sin throw the first stone, but if a stone should happen to hit her in the head I won’t be too disappointed because it will give me a chance to show off my awesome healing powers, as well”.

                      If assuming there is substance here, where is the justice in Bennett having her past kept hidden, when Turei’s was not?

                      Well, that’s the entire point, isn’t it. Turei brought her own past forward of her own choice. Bennett hasn’t. Turei was entitled to her privacy until she decided to make her offending public. Bennett is still entitled to her privacy, and is challenging allegations that are (as far as I am aware) unsubstantiated.

                    • RedLogix

                      So from now on historic offending is a matter for the person involved to choose to make public?

                      Sheesh … a lot of people in prison who likely wish you’d come up with that one sooner.

                    • McFlock

                      Like I said above, it’s not like she’s been accused of murder, is it?

                      Get some perspective. If her offending is as significant and as distant as Turei’s it’s equally none of our business unless she decides to bring it up. If what’s-his-name is accusing her of anything worse, then leave it for the cops. Either way it shouldn’t be political ammunition.

                    • RedLogix

                      But now you’re falling into exactly the one point the right DID have over Turei’s actions. That fundamentally cheating on welfare rules, however much we may abhor their punitive nature at the time … is not something a Minister can be seen to condone.

                      What Turei did was wrong in law and that needed to be answered for. And she did.

                      But it was justified morally in the context of a young mother trying to do her best for her children. On those grounds we defended Turei, and indeed we can defend Bennett as well.

                      But as a Minister of the Crown, does Bennett get to avoid alleged transgressions because ‘privacy’? As I suggested above, that’s really a whole can of worms.

                      After all Barclay scarcely committed murder either, but did we defend him on the grounds of privacy?

                    • McFlock

                      [edit]Gosh[/edit]. Barclay did what he did while in office. That patently makes him unsuitable to hold that office, let alone the fact that it’s well within any reasonable time to charge him if appropriate. So that’s not a fair comparison.

                      That fundamentally cheating on welfare rules, however much we may abhor their punitive nature at the time … is not something a Minister can be seen to condone.

                      [edit]I heartily disagree[/edit]. Even if it were argued that the alleged offending is serious enough that it should be dragged up decades later (which is doubtful), the degree to which the minister is seen to “condone” lawbreaking is directly proportional to the degree of reliability of the allegations. At the moment we have one guy who has used facebook to spread his allegation, with AFAIK zero substantiation. If that much warranted the end of a political career, there’d have to be a jet-propelled revolving door in the debating chamber.

                    • RedLogix

                      So now you’re arguing that no only was Turei morally justified in her actions decades ago (which I totally agree with) … that also because her actions are so old and should have remained private … there was no technical offense either?

                      Because that really amounts to condoning what she did. And I’m kind of surprised you think that’s a viable political strategy .

                      At the moment we have one guy who has used facebook to spread his allegation, with AFAIK zero substantiation.

                      And if you recall that’s pretty much how the case against Philip Field started too. Just unproven allegations. I’ve no idea if Farrell is a bullshitter or not. The only way forward is to let some sunshine in and see what is revealed.

                      Now if you think Bennett is justified in trying very hard to prevent even that from happening, I’d be even more surprised.

                    • McFlock

                      Just as an aside, it’s not just “now”. I’ve actually been pretty consistent in this. I don’t give a shit what either of them did 20 years ago, any more than I care if a mate of mine nicked a hamburger from the 24hr dairy after a night on the piss 20 years ago. There might be some technical offense, which frankly could and should be handled by the authorities with the minimum amount of media hooplah, but after 20 years of clean behaviour and even contributing to society, I would favour a judge doing a discharge without conviction..

                      And again, Philip Field did his thing while holding public office. This is not the same as an historic offence relating to benefits. But how many people made the allegations, and did they have supporting documentation and verification from other sources?

                      We don’t need “sunshine” on this case. That’s just an excuse for curtain-twitching on decades-old bene-bashing. Bennett isn’t trying to stop an official investigation, she’s trying to stop publication of unsubstantiated allegations which she claims are defamatory. Given the high threshold for public figures in this matter, I’m ok with her doing that – if there’s anything to the allegations, it’s a mistake for her to take it to court.

                    • RedLogix

                      We don’t need “sunshine” on this case. That’s just an excuse for curtain-twitching on decades-old bene-bashing.

                      Look I understand the sentiment. And I totally agree any issue over Turei’s situation should have been dealt to with a minimum of media hoop-la.

                      But potentially the amount of extra cash Turei, and Bennett, may have claimed over and above what they were entitled to amounts to a good deal more than a hamburger.

                      Yes these possible offenses are likely below the public interest threshold to prosecute, and time limits may have expired. But this isn’t the same thing as simply expunging them altogether and handing out exoneration just because of ‘privacy’ and pretending they never happened.

                      And like it or not we do hold Ministers of the Crown to somewhat higher standards than some old mate of yours.

                    • McFlock

                      Yes these possible offenses are likely below the public interest threshold to prosecute, and time limits may have expired. But this isn’t the same thing as simply expunging them altogether and handing out exoneration just because of ‘privacy’ and pretending they never happened.

                      Actually, it pretty much is that.

                      If there’s no public interest to prosecute, there’s no public interest to go snooping. And we can’t condone an investigation into something for which there is likely no public interest in prosecuting – it’s a waste of resources as well as an invasion of privacy.

                      We hold ministers up to a higher standard. This doesn’t exclude offenses made trivial by the passage of time.

                      If you must be purely cynical in your planning, where’s the bonus in validating beneficiary bashing again? Current nat supporters will be so shocked by this final piece of hypocrisy that they start voting left? Yeah, not likely. They’ve accepted the hypocrisy of ladder-kicking, so there’s not much hope they’ll give a shit about this. Meanwhile, everyone who is against benebashing will have to reconcile this against going after bennett over that very issue.

                    • RedLogix

                      OK but be honest that your argument amounts to condoning and justifying Turei’s actions as a beneficiary both legally and morally. Feel free to take that to the electorate as see how it flies.

                      And still a free pass for Bennett. Won’t she love you buddy.

                    • McFlock

                      In the same way that I approve and condone the Irish who stole food to feed their kids during famine. I’m not in a position to judge, and frankly it happened so long ago that their transgressions are not worth much effort investigating.

                      Hell, I’m not even sure I’m opposed to benefit fraud of that level by someone even today. Most of the time it seems to me that they’re just getting what the government should be bloody paying in the first place.

                      You say I give Bennett a free pass? There’s a difference between a free pass and not stooping to throw shit. She has plenty more avenues to be attacked based on her actions in government. We can throw shit or smell of roses, but not both.

                    • RedLogix

                      If you must be purely cynical in your planning, where’s the bonus in validating beneficiary bashing again?

                      You still seem to have missed it.

                      If there is something for Bennett to answer to then she should. And at that point the left sets the example by emphatically NOT indulging in bene-bashing. We explicitly invalidate it.

                      To the point of defending Bennett on this point if we have to.

                    • McFlock

                      If there is something for Bennett to answer to then she should. And at that point the left sets the example by emphatically NOT indulging in bene-bashing. We explicitly invalidate it.

                      Except that the act of “shining a light” on trivial events twenty years ago validates the idea that, once you’re a beneficiary, the public are entitled to examine every move you make as a beneficiary – worse than that, they’re entitled to go back over it twenty years after you were on a benefit.

                      Yeah, that’s beneficiary-bashing, too. All beneficiaries (past, current, and future) have a right to privacy, even the ones we don’t like.

                      the alternative is that not only are the bashers apparently entitled to audit the contents of your knickers drawer at will, as a beneficiary you have to keep photos of it in case twenty years later someone wants to see whether you were getting the full wear out of your undergarments. But that’s okay, because we’ll take the high road and say that although the matching bra and knickers set was an extravagent use of taxpayer funds, we forgive you. Gosh, aren’t we great.

                    • RedLogix

                      But that was the power of what Jesus did. This is what changed hearts.

                      He didn’t rush in and say “this woman is innocent of all offense”, he didn’t say “it’s all in the past and we should overlook it”. He didn’t try to pretend there was no fault or failure on her part. She wasn’t getting a free pass.

                      But he did demand compassion from those would stone her, he did demand they examine their consciences, and did demand they refrain from judgement. And then demonstrated this himself.

                      Do you think that crowd of stone-throwers would have been any less hard-hearted, less bigoted, less prying and curtain-twitching than the same mob who bayed after Turei’s blood?

                      Compassion is not about looking the other way and passively forgetting; it’s being honest about mistakes and actively forgiving.

                    • McFlock

                      You forget that in your story about Jesus, the woman’s guilt had already been established. And just the general nature of her crime was described.

                      There’s no story about Jesus peeking through windows in order to catch adulterers, that he might forgive them. What he wrote in the sand wasn’t recorded. We don’t know what sins the would-be stone-throwers committed, just that nobody felt themselves worthy to throw stones. The bible doesn’t “shine a light” on what she actually did, when, or with whom.

                      Your version of showing “compassion” is a selfish and pretentious sort of “compassion” where we search through every detail of someone’s life to find a crime that we can “forgive”, and thereby use forgiveness as a political tool.

                      Who would forgive us for that callous humiliation? What sins won’t we commit in order to show ourselves noble and compassionate?

                      In order to show ourselves better than nats, we have to be better than nats. Are we any better than a tory if we turn not just people but also the very concepts of morality and compassion into political objects, to be manipulated for our own cynical ends?

                      Why bother looking, if all we are going to do is forgive? There is no point to it. Let those guys be the curtain-twitchers and panty-sniffers, doxxing beneficiaries and auditing everyone’s tiniest decision in need. Fuck ’em. We shouldn’t do it, because we believe they shouldn’t do it.

                    • RedLogix

                      So in effect Turei gets the boot put into her and Bennett get a free pass because … the left is ‘better’.

                      That’s OK … it’s a strategy. A weak one, but it just might work. The DP crew and the bigots who’re their tools just might see how much better we are and see the error of their ways. Looking forward to Hosking’s Damascus moment and pleading mea culpa on prime time.

                      It’s a fine thing to defend the vulnerable and weak from bullying and persecution. The toxic culture of bene-bashing is despicable and corrosive; I hate it as much as you do. But we might want to be a little wary of the idea this makes them some kind of protected species to be absolved of all fault or blame.

                      Bottom line, benefit fraud remains a crime and the left pretends otherwise to our political peril. And I suspect Adern and Davis would agree with me. Even maybe Turei herself come to that.

                      Edit. mmm breaking news rather casts a harsh light on this whole conversation does it not McF?

                    • McFlock

                      So in effect Turei gets the boot put into her and Bennett get a free pass because … the left is ‘better’.

                      On that issue, yes. But that’s turei’s only fault (for want of a better word), whereas shit 20 years ago is way down the list of Bennett’s faults.

                      It’s not actually a strategy, though. It’s a principle. It’s one of those things you either have and follow for the chips to fall where they may, or you don’t have it at all.

                      Bottom line, benefit fraud remains a crime and the left pretends otherwise to our political peril. And I suspect Adern and Davis would agree with me.

                      They’ve made their position clear, yes. That’s why Turei’s not going to be a minister in October. I don’t recall Ardern or Davis commenting on whether Bennett broke the law 20 years ago while on a benefit. I’d be quite disappointed in them if they had done anything close to what you’re suggesting.

                    • McFlock

                      Edit. mmm breaking news rather casts a harsh light on this whole conversation does it not McF?

                      I think it casts more of a harsh light on the two Green MPs who have quit.

  16. Sabine 16

    ahh, another election another round of beneficiary bashing.

    as for bennett, don’t sit in a glass house and throw rocks. When that is done usually shit happens.

    but, fuck it another round of beneficiary bashing. Ack Ack ack.

  17. tricledrown 17

    Where is Paula Bennett she has gone missing National are fronting without the deputy PM.

  18. Why are critics so incensed and inflamed by Metiria’s confession?
    Because she didn’t show her gratitude for what she was given. She didn’t just ask for more, as Oliver Twist did, to the enormous inflammation of the Authorities then, “Please sir, can I have some more?” *cue furious outrage, “MORE!!! , she took some more!!! Hanging offence, that. To make matters much, much worse, when Metiria owned up, voluntarily, to having taken more than the Authorities/Authoritarians were willing to give, she showed NO REMORSE! She smirked, they say, she gave a supercilious look, they exclaim, she didn’t look sorry/beaten/contrite AT ALL, they pontificate. And so, they took aim and fired and fired and fired, shooting from their very hearts, because they know how serious such an action from the Twists of the world can be; the walls could come tumbling down, if they get their way. More! I’ll give them more.

    • Gabby 18.1

      On the offchance that your question is not rhetorical, possibly people suspect there has been a selective cynical honesty forced by circumstances, that parts of the story are less than flattering, and that this might be an example of the bourgeois exploitation of a system intended to alleviate serious hardship being used to justify making the system far more harsh and punitive.

  19. I too, believe we have more useful things to discuss here on TS. In any case, this guy’s doing the groundwork and will do so without our guidance:

    ‘Dear Media works NewZealand

    I’m just wondering why it is you are not talking to me about my allegations towards Miss Bennett{whom by the way is really Mrs Philps by marriage} as i am the person who blew the whistle on her corruption. I was also wondering why you are using Miss Turei as a distraction to take the attention away from Miss Bennett. I would be more than happy to answer any questions you have publically, but understand that you are too scared to ask me the questions that need to be asked. I am wondering when you are going to do your jobs and be real reporters, as what you are doing is an embarrassment to your profession.
    Thank you
    yours sincerly Ashley Farrell”

    • Stuart Munro 19.1

      The only thing that need be said on the subject of Bennett, and indeed many of her colleagues is…

      “Dracarys.”

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  • The Kākā's Chorus for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:The inside stories of KiwiRail’s iRex debacle, Westport’s perma-delayed flood scheme and Christchurch’s post-quake sewer rebuild, which assumed no population growth, show just how deeply sceptical senior officials in Treasury, the Ministry of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • What's that Jack Black?

    Ah-rah, deeSoo-guh-goo-gee-goo-geeGoo-guh fli-goo gee-gooGuh fli-goo, ga-goo-buh-deeOoh, guh-goo-beeOoh-guh-guh-bee-guh-guh-beeFli-goo gee-gooA-fliguh woo-wa mama Lucifer!I’m about ready to move on, how about you?Not from the shooting, that’s bad and we definitely shouldn’t have that. But the rehabilitation of Donald J Trump? The deification of Saint Donald? As the Great Unifier?Gimme a bucket.https://yellowscene.com/2024/04/07/trump-as-jesus/Just to re-iterate, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • June 2024: Earth’s 13th-consecutive warmest month on record

    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Jeff Masters and Bob Henson June 2024 was Earth’s warmest June since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was the planet’s 13th consecutive warmest month on record, NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, or NCEI, reported July 12. As opposed to being focused in ...
    5 days ago
  • Connecting the dots and filling the gaps in our bike network

    This is a guest post by Shaun Baker on the importance of filling the gaps in our cycling networks. It originally appeared on his blog Multimodal Adventures, and is re-posted here with kind permission. In our towns and cities in Aotearoa New Zealand, there are areas in our cycling networks ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    5 days ago
  • Webworm Down Under Photos!

    Hi,I wanted to share a few thoughts and photos from the Webworm popup and Tickled screening we held in Auckland, New Zealand last weekend.In short — it was a blast. I mean, I had a blast and I hope any of you that came also had a blast.An old friend ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:30 am on Thursday, July 18 are:News: Christchurch's sewer systems block further housing developments RNZ’s Niva ChittockAnalysis: Interislander: Treasury, MoT officials' mistrust of KiwiRail led ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Thursday, July 18, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Verbatim: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts held a news conference in Auckland to release the Government’s Emissions Reduction Plan, including ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The politics of managed retreat

    Climate change deniers are now challenging the Government over a key climate change adaptation policy. That begs the question of whether New Zealand First will then support Government moves to implement processes to deal with a managed retreat for properties in danger of flooding because of sea level rise and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Some changes are coming

    Warm welcome again to those who are here. The Mountain Tui substack was officially started on the 2nd of July. I wrote about what led me here on this post. Since then, it’s been a learning to navigate the platform, get to meet those in the community, and basically be ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • About fucking time

    The US Supreme Court has been rogue for years, with openly corrupt judges making the law up as they go to suit themselves, their billionaire buyers, and the Republican Party. But now, in the wake of them granting a licence for tyranny, President Biden is actually going to try and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: False accounting and wishful thinking

    National released their draft 2026-2030 Emissions Reduction Plan today. The plan is required under the Zero Carbon Act, and must set out policies and strategies to meet the relevant emissions budget. Having cancelled all Labour's actually effective climate change policies and crashed the carbon price, National was always going to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The Enemies Of Sunshine And Space.

    Our Houses? The Urban Density debate is a horrible combination of intergenerational avarice and envy, fuelled by the grim certainty that none of the generations coming up after them will ever have it as good as the Boomers. To say that this situation rankles among those born after 1965 is to ...
    6 days ago
  • Still the 5 Eyes Achilles Heel?

    The National Cyber Security Centre (NZSC), a unit in the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) dedicated to cyber-security, has released a Review of its response to the 2021 email hacking of NZ members of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Britain's Devastating Electoral Slip.

    Slip-Sliding Away: Labour may now enjoy a dominant position in Britain’s political landscape, but only by virtue of not being swallowed by it.THE BRITISH LABOUR PARTY’S “landslide victory” is nothing of the sort. As most people understand the term, a landslide election victory is one in which the incumbent government, or ...
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why right wingers think all governments (including their own) are incompetent

    Since open denial of climate change is no longer a viable political option, denial now comes in disguise. The release this week of the coalition government’s ‘draft emissions reductions plan” shows that the Luxon government is refusing to see the need to cut emissions at source. Instead, it proposes to ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy this morning are:Chris Penk is set to roll back building standards for insulation that had only just been put in place, and which had been estimated to save 40% from power costs, after builders ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Open Letter to Pharmac

    All this talk of getting oldIt's getting me down, my loveLike a cat in a bag, waiting to drownThis time I'm coming downAnd I hope you're thinking of meAs you lay down on your sideNow the drugs don't workThey just make you worse but I know I'll see your face ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • A blanket of misinformation

    Two old sayings have been on my mind lately. The first is: “The pen is mightier than the sword”, describing the power of language and communication to help or to harm. The other, which captures the speed with which falsehoods can become ingrained and hard to undo, is: “A lie can ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 7:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 are:Scoop: Government considers rolling back home insulation standards RNZ’s Eloise GibsonNews: Government plans tree-planting frenzy as report shows NZ no longer ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 , the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day were:Simon Watts released the Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP), which included proposed changes to the Emissions Trading Scheme ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • “Shhhh” – National's 3 Waters is loaded with higher costs and lays a path to ...

    This is a long, possibly technical, but very, very important read. I encourage you to take the time and spread your awareness.IntroductionIn 2022, then Labour Party Prime Minister Jacinda Adern expended significant political capital to protect New Zealand’s water assets from privatisation. She lost that battle, and Labour and the ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Plugging a video channel: Dr Gilbz

    Dr. Ella Gilbert is a climate scientist and presenter with a PhD in Antarctic climate change, working at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Her background is in atmospheric sciences and she's especially interested in the physical mechanisms of climate change, clouds, and almost anything polar. She is passionate about communicating climate ...
    7 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” again

    Back in 2022, in its Open Government Partnership National Action Plan, the government promised to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation. Since then they've run a secret "consultation" on how to do that, with their preferred outcome being that agencies will consult the Ministry of Justice ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Crashing New Zealand's health system is not the way to prosperity, Prime Minister

    Another day, and yet another piece of bad news for New Zealand’s health system. Reports have come out that General Practitioners (GP) may have to close doors, or increase patient fees to survive. The so-called ‘capitation’ funding review, which supports GP practices to survive, is under way, and primary care ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Closer Than You Think: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.

    Redefining Our Terms: “When an angry majority is demanding change, defending the status-quo is an extremist position.”“WHAT’S THIS?”, asked Laurie, eyeing suspiciously the two glasses of red wine deposited in front of him.“A nice drop of red. I thought you’d be keen to celebrate the French Far-Right’s victory with the ...
    1 week ago
  • Come on Darleen.

    Good morning all, time for a return to things domestic. After elections in the UK and France, Luxon gatecrashing Nato, and the attempted shooting of Trump, it’s probably about time we re-focus on local politics.Unless of course you’re Christopher Luxon and you’re so exhausted from all your schmoozing in Washington ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • How the Northwest was lost and may be won

    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16

    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16

    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother

    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?

    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)

    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    1 week ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.

    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago

  • Sir Don to travel to Viet Nam as special envoy

    Sir Don McKinnon will travel to Viet Nam this week as a Special Envoy of the Government, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced.    “It is important that the Government give due recognition to the significant contributions that General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong made to New Zealand-Viet Nam relations,” Mr ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 hour ago
  • Grant Illingworth KC appointed as transitional Commissioner to Royal Commission

    Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden says newly appointed Commissioner, Grant Illingworth KC, will help deliver the report for the first phase of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into COVID-19 Lessons, due on 28 November 2024.  “I am pleased to announce that Mr Illingworth will commence his appointment as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 hour ago
  • NZ to advance relationships with ASEAN partners

    Foreign Minister Winston Peters travels to Laos this week to participate in a series of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)-led Ministerial meetings in Vientiane.    “ASEAN plays an important role in supporting a peaceful, stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific,” Mr Peters says.   “This will be our third visit to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Backing mental health services on the West Coast

    Construction of a new mental health facility at Te Nikau Grey Hospital in Greymouth is today one step closer, Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey says. “This $27 million facility shows this Government is delivering on its promise to boost mental health care and improve front line services,” Mr Doocey says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • NZ support for sustainable Pacific fisheries

    New Zealand is committing nearly $50 million to a package supporting sustainable Pacific fisheries development over the next four years, Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This support consisting of a range of initiatives demonstrates New Zealand’s commitment to assisting our Pacific partners ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Students’ needs at centre of new charter school adjustments

    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says proposed changes to the Education and Training Amendment Bill will ensure charter schools have more flexibility to negotiate employment agreements and are equipped with the right teaching resources. “Cabinet has agreed to progress an amendment which means unions will not be able to initiate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Commissioner replaces Health NZ Board

    In response to serious concerns around oversight, overspend and a significant deterioration in financial outlook, the Board of Health New Zealand will be replaced with a Commissioner, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti announced today.  “The previous government’s botched health reforms have created significant financial challenges at Health NZ that, without ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Minister to speak at Australian Space Forum

    Minister for Space and Science, Innovation and Technology Judith Collins will travel to Adelaide tomorrow for space and science engagements, including speaking at the Australian Space Forum.  While there she will also have meetings and visits with a focus on space, biotechnology and innovation.  “New Zealand has a thriving space ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Climate Change Minister to attend climate action meeting in China

    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts will travel to China on Saturday to attend the Ministerial on Climate Action meeting held in Wuhan.  “Attending the Ministerial on Climate Action is an opportunity to advocate for New Zealand climate priorities and engage with our key partners on climate action,” Mr Watts says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Oceans and Fisheries Minister to Solomons

    Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones is travelling to the Solomon Islands tomorrow for meetings with his counterparts from around the Pacific supporting collective management of the region’s fisheries. The 23rd Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Committee and the 5th Regional Fisheries Ministers’ Meeting in Honiara from 23 to 26 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government launches Military Style Academy Pilot

    The Government today launched the Military Style Academy Pilot at Te Au rere a te Tonga Youth Justice residence in Palmerston North, an important part of the Government’s plan to crackdown on youth crime and getting youth offenders back on track, Minister for Children, Karen Chhour said today. “On the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Nine priority bridge replacements to get underway

    The Government has welcomed news the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has begun work to replace nine priority bridges across the country to ensure our state highway network remains resilient, reliable, and efficient for road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“Increasing productivity and economic growth is a key priority for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Update on global IT outage

    Acting Prime Minister David Seymour has been in contact throughout the evening with senior officials who have coordinated a whole of government response to the global IT outage and can provide an update. The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet has designated the National Emergency Management Agency as the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand, Japan renew Pacific partnership

    New Zealand and Japan will continue to step up their shared engagement with the Pacific, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “New Zealand and Japan have a strong, shared interest in a free, open and stable Pacific Islands region,” Mr Peters says.    “We are pleased to be finding more ways ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New infrastructure energises BOP forestry towns

    New developments in the heart of North Island forestry country will reinvigorate their communities and boost economic development, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones visited Kaingaroa and Kawerau in Bay of Plenty today to open a landmark community centre in the former and a new connecting road in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • 'Pacific Futures'

    President Adeang, fellow Ministers, honourable Diet Member Horii, Ambassadors, distinguished guests.    Minasama, konnichiwa, and good afternoon, everyone.    Distinguished guests, it’s a pleasure to be here with you today to talk about New Zealand’s foreign policy reset, the reasons for it, the values that underpin it, and how it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Delivering 24 hour pothole repairs

    Kiwis and freight operators will benefit from the Coalition Government delivering on its commitment to introduce targets that will ensure a greater number of potholes on our state highways are identified and fixed within 24 hours, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Increasing productivity to help rebuild our economy is a key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Peer Support Specialists rolled out in hospitals

    Five hospitals have been selected to trial a new mental health and addiction peer support service in their emergency departments as part of the Government’s commitment to increase access to mental health and addiction support for New Zealanders, says Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Peer Support Specialists in EDs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan

    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset

    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • School attendance continues to increase

    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway

    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news of progress being made by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) on the first of several crucial resilience projects underway on the South Island’s West Coast.“State highways across the West Coast are critical lifelines for communities throughout the region, including for freight and tourism. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Migrant school leavers to get part-time work rights

    The coalition Government is providing migrant school leavers with greater opportunities, by increasing access to part-time work rights for those awaiting the outcome of a family residence application, Immigration Minister Erica Stanford has announced.  “Many young people who are part of a family residence application process are unable to work. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Funding to support use of NZ Sign Language

    Seven projects have received government funding totalling nearly $250,000 to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). Initiatives that received an NZSL Board Community Grants this year include camps that support the use of NZSL through physical and sensory activities, and clubs where Deaf people and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Inflation data shows progress in economic recovery

    Today’s Consumer Price Index data which has inflation at 3.3 per cent for the year to July 2024, shows we are turning our economy around and winning the fight against rampant inflation, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “While today’s data will be welcome news for Kiwis, I know many New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki

    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access

    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits

    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will hold a series of nationwide summits to discuss regional priorities, aspirations and opportunities, with the first kicking off in Nelson on August 12. The 15 summits will facilitate conversations about progressing regional economic growth and opportunities to drive productivity, prosperity and resilience through the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston

    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety

    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship

    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality

    The Government is moving forward with recommendations from the Tourism Data Leadership Group, beginning with establishing a Tourism Data Partnership Fund says Tourism and Hospitality Minister Matt Doocey. “The Tourism Data Partnership Fund is funded through the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) and will provide up to $400,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • 4000 more job seekers to get case managers

    A new over-the-phone employment case management service will see thousands more job seekers under the age of 25 supported to find work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston has announced. “MSD case managers provide valuable support to help people into work, but less than a third of those receiving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy

    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants

    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • District Court judges appointed

    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins

    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended

    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago

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