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Billionaire pledges to pay off class of 2019’s student loans

Written By: - Date published: 7:57 am, May 21st, 2019 - 50 comments
Categories: education, Ethics, schools, tertiary education, us politics - Tags:

This was a graduation ceremony with a difference.

Watch the video showing the end of his speech to see why.

MSN has the details:

Billionaire investor and philanthropist Robert F. Smith was giving the commencement speech at Morehouse College in Atlanta on Sunday, when he deviated from his prepared remarks to make an announcement: ‘‘My family is going to create a grant to eliminate your student loans!’’

‘‘Everyone started crying and jumping for joy,’’ said a spokesperson for Smith, who asked not to be identified. ‘‘It was him speaking from his heart.’’

It’s hard to estimate the cost of Smith’s gift to the 2019 graduates of the all-male historically black college, but it could be in the range of $5 million to $10 million, according to estimates. There are 400 graduates in the class, and Morehouse costs about $26,000 per year, his spokesperson said.

There was celebration at Morehouse as the grads and their parents processed the news.

Tonga Releford, whose son Charles Releford III is a member of the Class of 2019, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that her son’s student loans are an estimated $70,000.

‘‘I feel like it’s Mother’s Day all over again,’’ she told the paper.

Graduate Elijah Dormeus, a business administration major, told the newspaper: ‘‘If I could do a backflip I would. I am deeply ecstatic.’’

Dormeus, 22, who is from Harlem, said he has $90,000 in student loans. His mother, Andrea Dormeus, who drives a school bus, came to his graduation with his five siblings.

Moorehouse College is is the alma mater of African-American community and civil leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr.  

And Smith’s request?  That his fellow graduates (he received an honorary degree that day) look after those coming after them.  From the Washington Post:

Now, I know my class will make sure they pay this forward. I want my class to look at these [alumni], these beautiful Morehouse brothers, and let’s make sure every class has the same opportunity going forward, because we are enough to take care of our own community. We are enough to ensure we have all the opportunities of the American Dream.”

This is an outstanding gesture.  But the same result could be achieved by ensuring that the wealthy pay their fair share of tax and insisting that young people receive the education they deserve no matter how poor they are.

50 comments on “Billionaire pledges to pay off class of 2019’s student loans”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    As a general principle, socialism is actually about not having to rely on whatever cash the rich decide they have to spare in order for social mobility to work.

  2. Lucy 2

    The man is an investment banker so the probability is that some of the people whose loans he paid off have parents or relations made redundant, lost houses or died because of his investment decisions. But he gets to feel good off the misery of others.

    • Muttonbird 2.1

      +1. The lord giveth and the lord taketh away. In capitalism the wealthy are the lord.

    • Chris T 2.2

      39 minutes

      Shocking time delay before the anti-any one with money lot pipe in……actually anyone with money who isn't left, as Jacinda being rich and upping taxes on poor people doesn't count

      • higherstandard 2.2.1

        Lucy must be seething she can't call him on white privilege.

        • Lucy 2.2.1.1

          Why do I care what colour he is? I am seething about the fact that he has returned a small percentage of the money he has removed from his community. Wealth does not happen without poverty. 

    • A 2.3

      I think he's made a small dent in his karma in this gesture. 

    • fustercluck 2.4

      Good God! An African American defies stereotypes and becomes a billionaire and spends $40 million on students at an African American liberal arts university and this is your attitude? Churlish does not begin to describe it.

      • Lucy 2.4.1

        sigh doesn't matter what he defies. He is a man who has a billion dollars – one does not get to have that much money by being the nice guy. He could have given money to many causes to improve the lives of lots of people. Instead he gives money to upper middle class black men who already have advantage and privilege. Churlish does not begin to describe how I feel – I am angry at every billionaire, no matter what race, I can not get the drugs I need because a profit needs to be made from my disease, my children need to pay for their education so the taxes for the rich can be low, my rent is high so my landlord can make a profit. 

  3. Incognito 3

    Paying your fair share of tax doesn’t get you in the Guardian or WP. Anyway, tax is legalised theft and thus is involuntary, to some (…) wealthy folks that is. The hysterical cries and screams about CGT are still ringing in my ears.

  4. patricia bremner 4

    There are good people inside every bad system.   In America money talks. This will be helpful to this years graduates,  and may begin a cycle of less debt. It can not be counted on in planning the future as it depends on the kindness of others, and may not continue at a useful level.

  5. WeTheBleeple 5

    Is trickle down meant to be voluntary? Do we live at the mercy of greed's good graces?

     

  6. Dennis Frank 6

    "But the same result could be achieved by ensuring that the wealthy pay their fair share of tax and insisting that young people receive the education they deserve no matter how poor they are."

    I grew up here in a social system that did that effectively.  Despite being a non-believer in socialism, I'm happy to acknowledge the extent to which it has been proven to work in the past, in some countries, for the good of all.  Problem is, since the seventies such empirical evidence has become increasingly rare.  Can't blame younger generations for having no faith in it, when they can't see a model working properly in the real world.

    So it's reasonable to concede that patronage is being revived as an exemplary model of behaviour for the wealthy.  A positive alternative to the `greed is good' ethic that emerged in the eighties.  Such altruism is a partial antidote to the social darwinism that market forces create. 

  7. A 7

    That's awesome!!

  8. Macro 8

    Well I guess he has to find some way to pay the society in which he lives and works. Especially after Don and Mitch gave him that big beautiful tax relief Xmas present. And not just give 62 cent of every tax dollar to the military. 

  9. Macro 9

    The funding of HBCU's such as Moorhouse is reaching crisis levels. 

    Nearly half of African-American students who borrowed money defaulted on their loans, according to a recent study. In 2017, the U.S. Department of Education issued a report stating black students with a college degree would owe more than their original student loan balance after 12 years. The report revealed a direct correlation between race and student loans, as well as the need for a solution that addresses those disparities in future education policy. For generations, black students have had to overcome institutionalized and structural barriers to obtain a college degree, only to be sent into a marginalized economy with massive debt that sets them even further behind than their skin color or zip code.

    However Elizabeth Warren has a plan for that! laugh

    https://www.theroot.com/history-lesson-sen-elizabeth-warren-breaks-down-why-h-1834445016

    History Lesson: Sen. Elizabeth Warren Breaks Down Why Her $50 Billion Plan to Fund HBCUs Is Very Necessary

    Warren’s detailed plan addresses racial and socioeconomic disparities to improve the higher education system with five potential policy changes that would be funded by a 2% tax on families earning $50 million income or higher:

    • Create a minimum $50 billion fund for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs).
    • Additional federal funding for states that demonstrate substantial improvement in enrollment and graduation rates for lower-income students and students of color.
    • Ban for-profit colleges from receiving any federal dollars while targeting lower-income students, service members, and students of color and leaving them saddled with debt.
    • Require public college audits that identify issues that create shortfalls and propose steps to improve those rates.
    • Prohibit public colleges from considering citizenship status or criminal history in admissions decisions. (Read more about her plan here.)

    In an interview with The Root, Sen. Warren said, “HBCUs have had to do way more with way less, and it is wrong. We have got to face racial discrimination in our education system head on.”

     

  10. RedLogix 10

    The USA has a long history of philanthropy. It's not confined to the ultra-wealthy, people of all classes are inclined to donate and contribute in whatever manner they can. When it's on this scale it attracts attention, but 99.99% of it goes largely unreported in the media.

    It's how the Americans do redistribution, they prefer to retain some right to choose who they give to, rather than the receiver have an unconstrained right to it. In practise most countries operate some mix of these two modes. NZ tilts towards the universal right to redistribution, but it's not the only way it can work.

    • WeTheBleeple 10.1

      Yeah some of my food I grow goes to struggling families close by. But I don't expect a parade for it. 

      I'll never forget working on a U2 concert, where tens of thousands of locals shelled out close to a hundred bucks each to see them. During the concert, Bono – oh great philanthropist – entreats the crowd: "get out your cellphones, isn't that beautiful, now, text this number and donate…"

      They had a brand new set design which is apparently the norm to disguise the fact 'The edge' has played the same riff over and over for forty years.

      Philanthropy from the rich is mostly PR and flimsy atonement.

       

      • RedLogix 10.1.1

        But I don't expect a parade for it. 

        But a thank you is appreciated is it not?

        Culturally us kiwis are always a little uncomfortable with generous donations that are too public, we're always a bit sus around the motives. On the other hand donations that are totally secret arouse questions around what strings might be attached.

        Wealthy people who don't give back to their communities are regarded as selfish and grasping, and if they do give generously they're condemned for 'flimsy atonement'.

        It's all rather inconsistent and confusing.

        • Drowsy M. Kram 10.1.1.1

          This wonderful philanthropic gesture got me thinking.

          Imagine the positive difference the wealthy could make now if they all took a vow of poverty.  For example, we know that the richest 1% owned roughly half of the world's wealth in 2017.  Just think of the difference that wealth could make to the lives of the poorest 4 billion people. ‘Trickle down‘ on steroids! [But not in a Trumpian way! https://www.cnbc.com/2016/10/19/clinton-trump-wants-biggest-tax-break-to-wealthy-trickle-down-on-steroids.html ]

          Best of all, we might only have to wait a decade or so to be able to do it all again!

          It would be a very Christian sacrifice, would it not?

          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_vows

          https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/14/richest-1-percent-now-own-half-the-worlds-wealth.html

          • RedLogix 10.1.1.1.1

            Indeed enlightened

            Of course globally the top 1% globally is pretty much includes most people in NZ.

            • Andre 10.1.1.1.1.1

              Most people in NZ are part of the top 75 million people in the world? I find that very unlikely. In the top 10% or top 750 million maybe. Just add up the populations above us in income rankings:

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Median_income

              Hell, Auckland doesn't even make the list of the top 28 cities worldwide ofr numbers of USD millionaires. But places like Alexandria, Nairobi and Lagos do.

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Millionaire

            • Drowsy M. Kram 10.1.1.1.1.2

              Most people in NZ are among the world's wealthiest 1%?  Would that be an example of a convenient evidence-free belief?

              "To reach the top 1 percent worldwide in terms of wealth – not just income but all you own – you’d have to possess [US] $770,000 in net worth, which includes everything from the equity in your home to the value of your investments."

              https://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/050615/are-you-top-one-percent-world.asp

              NZ is certainly a wealthy country, and the recent NZ property price boom will have propelled some home owners into the global 1%, but your provocative assertion is fanciful. However, with a little local redistribution of wealth, who knows?

              Now there’s an idea! How to redistribute personal wealth in NZ to maximise the number of NZers in the world’s wealthiest 1%. Could we get 30% of NZer over the line?

              • RedLogix

                Feel free to shift the goal posts from income distribution to asset distribution if it pleases you; don't expect me to follow.

                Still it would be fair to say that most kiwis are within the top 2% and almost all in the top 5% or so of income distribution.

                Of course the cool thing about lopping off the top 1% and sending them all to the poverty gulag is that you are now left with another fresh top 1% and you can do the same to them. Rinse and repeat until you have proper communism.

                • Drowsy M. Kram

                  RL, you're not living up to your name.  The post is about a billionaire's philantrophic gesture.  Does 'billionaire' refers to net wealth, or income?

                  You started the sub-thread @10, mentioning "ultra-wealthy" and "redistribution".  No mention of income though.  If you meant 'income redistribution', rather than wealth redistribution, then maybe just say so.

                  @10.1.1 you mention "Wealthy people" and "donations", and how you find it "all rather inconsistent and confusing."  Still no mention of income.

                  I replied to 10.1.1 @10.1.1.1 (11:52 am), and I didn't mention income either.

                  You replied briefly (@10.1.1.1.1) to me, mentioning “the top 1% globally” – still no mention of ‘income’. My reply (@10.1.1.1.1.2) is now the subject of your “shifting the goalposts” criticism.

                  IMHO it is you who is attempting to shift the goalposts, and I'm happy for others to form their own opinions.

                  • RedLogix

                    The term 'top 1%' can be defined by income or assets. Logically I had in mind income as the basis for my claim.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Was it not clear from my first reply (@10.1.1.1) that I was focussing on personal wealth?  If your focus was on income, then you had ample opportunity to make that clear @10, or @10.1.1, or in your reply at @10.1.1.1.1.

                      Whichever way you play it (wealth, or annual income), your original citation-free reckon was wrong – just a genuine mistake?  wink

                      As for sending the entire 1% to the 'poverty gulag', well that would be cruel – so unfair to expect the 1% to cope with median living conditions, let alone poverty.  A vow of poverty, on the other hand, would be an admirable choice.

              • mike

                paper wealthy only and a shit load of debt to go with it

          • greywarshark 10.1.1.1.2

            Just tithe themselves 10% from their discretionary budget!    But they could never get beyond their road block on that sort of idea and budge it.

        • WeTheBleeple 10.1.1.2

          Yeah, I should have put accent on the word mostly:

          Philanthropy from the rich is mostly PR and flimsy atonement.

           

           

    • AB 10.2

      The Americans prefer philanthropy/charity because it contains an the assumption that the original accumulation of wealth is justified – and it is then re-distributed out of 'love' (philo). The right to choose who gets charity maintains the power relationship – there is no surrender or equalising of power between giver and receiver. This lack of equalisation is in fact the opposite of love.

      If on the other hand you don't see this as re-distribution at all – but rather as repatriation of the money to where it should have gone in the first place if markets allocated wealth rationally, then charity doesn't really cut it as a solution.

       

      • RedLogix 10.2.1

        The right to choose who gets charity maintains the power relationship

        Right there is the problem that arises when the only political tool you have is 'power relationships' and the implicit assumption that all power is bad and can only be used for tyrannical purposes.

        If that were truly the case, why would you support a left wing party into political 'power'? Surely that would be an innately bad thing also?

        • McFlock 10.2.1.1

          Observing that a power relationship exists is not the same as endorsing it.

    • joe90 10.3

      It's how the Americans do redistribution,

       

      That, and military Keynesianism.

       

      According to an analysis by the DoD Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA), the department spent $408 billion on payroll and contracts in Fiscal Year 2015, approximately 2.3 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP).

       

      http://www.ncsl.org/research/military-and-veterans-affairs/military-s-impact-on-state-economies.aspx

  11. AB 11

    A good thing for him to do – so well done.

    But it has no structural value whatsoever – what about last year's graduates, or next year's, or those at a different college? And the downside is that it plays into the 'billionaire capitalist saviour' delusion that attaches itself to individuals from time to time (Elon Musk, Bill Gates …) and probably holds us all back from seeking those structural solutions.

    Though it fits well with our superficial contemporary focus on individuals and the idea of celebrity – so it will get a lot of coverage.

     

  12. Adrian Thornton 12

    Excellent last sentence there MS, here is a very good conversation on KPFA with author of ' No Such Thing as a Free Gift' Linsey McGoey, well worth a listen to anyone interested in the politics of philanthropy going forward.

    https://kpfa.org/episode/against-the-grain-october-5-2016/

    " In an era of massive cuts to social services, the largesse of the wealthy seems a blessing.  But what do the rich get in return for their philanthropy? Linsey McGoey argues that they receive both financial benefits and great influence over policy. She traces the history of philanthropy in the United States and discusses the Gates Foundation’s role in shaping primary and secondary school education, pharmaceutical patents, and more — with very little media scrutiny.

     

    • Siobhan 12.1

      No I have to disagree with you there Adrian,  its not a excellent sentence. 

      "This is an outstanding gesture.  But the same result could be achieved by ensuring that the wealthy pay their fair share of tax"

      If tax was paid properly it would not be THE SAME RESULT, ie one small group benefiting, it would be all students every year.

      An entirely different kettle of fish.

  13. Dennis Frank 13

    Geoff Robinson is a political historian and lecturer in History and Politics at Deakin University, in Geelong, Australia.  "He is currently completing a book on the fate of the Australian left since the fall of European communism."  https://theconversation.com/profiles/geoffrey-robinson-7303

    He's had a go at explaining their election result:  https://thespinoff.co.nz/politics/20-05-2019/labors-loss-reveals-its-trouble-convincing-australians-it-can-improve-their-lives/

    "Labor’s failure lay in its inability to convince enough voters that its policies could actually improve their material conditions. Labor state governments can provide material things like schools, hospitals and solar panels, and voters delight in these. Federal Labor, meanwhile, claimed that the election was a referendum on wages. This mobilised the left’s mass support base: the unions, public-sector heartland and its remaining private sector outposts. The left created the simulacrum of a social movement: rallies, rallies and rallies, and electoral door-knocking. Outside of the left’s world, however, this appeal failed to strike much of a chord."

    Preaching to the converted is never good electoral politics.  Traditional political wisdom always specifies that, where left/right tribal loyalties fail to provide a majority for one or the other, centrists or non-aligned voters create the outcome.  Labour has known this in the past – the mystery lies in evaporation of that gnosis on the left.  I usually diagnose delusional thinking, but I'd prefer an explanation for why that happens – using deep psychology.

    "Bill Shorten is a “true believer”, one who grounded his politics in Labor traditions and history, rather than an explicit ideology. The left often flees to history, even if for most of its members the history of labour is passé compared to the more exciting fields of culture and identity."

    Maybe he's onto it here.  Re-interpreting this, could be traditional gnosis got dispelled by a shift into culture-warfare attitudes.  Blaming identity politics doesn't get us understanding – we must go deeper into what drives tribal polarisation.

    • RedLogix 13.1

      we must go deeper into what drives tribal polarisation.

      It's only 18 minutes:



      • Dennis Frank 13.1.1

        Thanks, that was good.  I wasn't very impressed when I read his book about the righteous mind several years ago, but he did better illuminating the psychology of morality in that talk.

    • greywarshark 13.2

      This has good points and on similar line with Open Mike 2.1.1, me and Adrian T is going to add more when he has time.

    • Adrian Thornton 13.3

      What exactly does he mean when he says.." Bill Shorten is a “true believer”, one who grounded his politics in Labor traditions and history, rather than an explicit ideology"

      The traditional and historical Left Labour is an ideology, you can't supposedly submerge yourself it it's traditions and history without believing and advocating for it's core ideologies.

      If you only appear on the surface as labour but do not promote those beliefs in your manifesto, thereby rejecting it's ideology, then you are only left with the likes of New Labour UK (now defunct), Labour NZ amongst others, parties now struggling (struggled) to find a coherent political voice. Whereas Labour parties and leaders that advocate those old ideologies and have it at the centre of their manifestos are doing just fine..Jeremy Corbyn and Bernie Sanders of course come to mind.

      Now back to work…again.

      • Dennis Frank 13.3.1

        Could be he means Shorten is a tribal loyalist rather than a leftist ideologue.  Not many people remaining nowadays who cling to the old class-warfare notion, eh?

        Throughout my life I've seen Labour present itself as a vehicle for both working class and middle class simultaneously.  Everyone knows labourers aren't middle class.  So brand authenticity got ditched long before I was born, and I'll be 70 soon.

        The organised attempt to represent two social classes simultaneously is ambitious, but flawed.  It presumes the two share a common-interest view.  However proof that middle-class professionals acknowledge solidarity with unionists has never been validated by social science research, as far as I know.  Neoliberalism has proved the middle class are aspiring capitalists.  The CGT outcome, for instance, shows they feel more of a common-interest view with the upper class than the lower…

        • Adrian Thornton 13.3.1.1

          Tribal loyalist..that's a new one to me, tell me what do you think a Labour 'tribal loyalist' actually believes in?

          I think that the CGT analogy is a bit unfair, as if is plainly obvious that Labour never had their heart in it, it was a non starter from the word go with this lot of centerists.

          As far as the middle class goes, I don't think Liberalism proved the middle class to be "aspiring capitalists", but what it did do was unwittingly unleash that most unpleasant and often destructive of human conditions..greed, and therein lays Liberalisms secret power…well IMO anyway.

           

  14. greywarshark 14

    This is one good educational idea set up by a black man from the States and it will be ongoing as there is a Trust.  Perhaps we could support it.   He has gone back to the states to see if he could replicate it there.

    https://inzoneeducation.org.nz/

    The InZone Education Foundation is a New Zealand registered charitable trust that aims to inspire and support Māori and Pasifika youth to take their place in the cultural, economic and civic leadership of Aotearoa New Zealand.

    We do this by providing kāinga (hostels) which are “InZone” for high performing schools and we partner with the schools to ensure students achieve top educational outcomes.  Our kāinga enable our students to live and learn in a supportive whānau environment with a Māori and Christian kaupapa.  In this environment,  we aim to support, inspire and empower our rangatahi to achieve to their full potential.

  15. Andre 15

    Interesting observation here that this gift sets up a natural economics experiment.

    https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2019/5/20/18632520/morehouse-college-graduation-class-size-robert-f-smith-billionaire

    And it exposes a bit of detail about Smith's efforts to ensure his personal taxes stay much lower than other people's.

  16. patricia bremner 16

    Bill Shorten should have done an Andrew Little.  He hung on as an albatross.

    He was a good but uninspiring man.  He made Scomo look the better Leader.  Along with horrible false ads on facebook etc,  about policies,  which were drowning the true position.

    Australians turn off any criticism of Trump the war machine or oil and mining.  They believe in charities like the Foundation behind Life Flight helicopter service, which is getting less funding as people in Queensland and elsewhere in Australia feel the down turn.
    What people forget is this works in good times but falls over when truly needed.

    While farmers struggle with a drought which is now severely impacting the wheat yield to the point of raising bread prices,  the summer fires will be worse and many NZers may decide to return,  putting strain on our infrastructure
    and charities.
    Their unemployment rate is increasing and property prices have plummeted,  leaving those who leveraged their homes to invest in the stock market teetering on the brink.

    The banking sector has been shown to be lying greedy fecks during the inquiry.  That will not change as they foreclose on homes,  as they did on farms previously in the last downturn in values caused by drought conditions.

    The gaming of the electoral system to the advantage of the wealthy corporate and lobby interests is almost considered reasonable. "It is their money after all"   Nah,  it is often taxes they like Trump have gained by gaming the system.

    Further those who vote say it is hard to know who you will get in a close run election as preferences can alter outcomes.  Just as here we can get false parties given a safe seat to game numbers, Palmer did that with his   $50 million "investment"  and gift of preferences to the winning group.

    All this will make life harder for the struggling and the post Feb 1 visa holding New Zealanders resident there. 

    Bridges was thrilled when Scomo won and said  "Lessons could be learned here"…. so those dirty tactics have started.  He has publicly aligned his party with the USA.  and guns?…lobbying?…foreign money?….false advertising? ..Charities?   The whole nine yards I would think!!

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    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 days ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 days ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    3 days ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    5 days ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    5 days ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    5 days ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    6 days ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    6 days ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    6 days ago
  • Damn the Polls
    So, there have been a bunch of bad polls out for Labour, and even the Leftie's friend, Survation, have recently given the Conservatives a rip-snorting 11% lead.  You Gov's much vaunted MRP poll - which pretty much nailed the result in 2015 - is currently predicting a comfortable majority for ...
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Europe declares an emergency
    The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency:The European parliament has declared a global “climate and environmental emergency” as it urged all EU countries to commit to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • A Bi-Partisan Commitment To X-ing “P”.
    Pure Fear: Worse than Heroin, this drug’s addictive power was terrifying. People under its influence didn’t drift off to Elysium. Nor did it persuade inadequate individuals that they could conquer the world. No, this drug – pure crystal methamphetamine, “P” for short – unlocked the gates of Hell itself. It ...
    1 week ago
  • Advice about measles: when ignorance is definitely not a virtue
    As the rate of measles infection, and of deaths, continues to climb in Samoa, antivaccination activists infectious disease proponents seem intent on doubling down on their claims about vaccination. (Check pretty much any news-media FB post about measles & you’ll see exactly what I mean.) Unfortunately, some of them have ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Samoa’s devastating measles epidemic – why and how bad?
    Samoa are experiencing a devastating measles epidemic. It is possible that 2-3% of the population will ultimately be infected by the time it is over. Hopefully the mass immunisation campaign currently under way can mitigate some of this, for many it is too late. The first question many people ask ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • “It’s basic rights we are defending”: the Meghan Murphy interview
    Meghan Murphy is a Canadian writer and journalist She runs the Feminist Current website which she founded in 2012.  She was a keynote speaker for the Feminism2020 conference in Wellington this month. When Massey University cancelled the original venue booking Feminism2020 was hosted in Parliament by MP David Seymour. Meghan ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • A week of protests in Colombia
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Colombia has lived through one week of protests against the economic measures taken by president Duque. What looked like a protest that would fizzle out after its first day on November 21st is still going strong. Part of the reason for the continuance ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Anti-neutrinos–When you are your own opposite
    Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • Exoplanets, life, and the danger of a single study
    By Pallab Ghosh There’s value in covering new research advances, even when the underlying science is unsettled. But there are also risks. The recent announcement that scientists discovered water on the planet K2-18b, 110 light years away, prompted a media swoon. News stories, including a piece written by me, billed ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The Intersex Continuum
    I wrote this review a couple of years ago when I was still in the process of getting my head around the politics of transgenderism, and specifically the claim that intersex conditions lend support to the notion that sex is ‘socially constructed’. Since writing this review I have come across ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Leaving us with the bill
    Two weeks ago, Malaysian-owned oil company Tamarind declared it was insolvent and went into administration after a failed offshore drilling campaign. Tamarind apparently specialises in buying oil fields at the end of their life and trying to squeeze out the last few drops of pollution. But part of their scam ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How much does flying contribute to climate change?
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz How much does our use of air travel contribute to the ...
    SciBlogsBy Shaun Hendy
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The task before us
    Two weeks ago, the Zero Carbon Act became law. Right this moment, the Climate Change Commisison will be working on its initial budgets for 2022-25 and 2026-2030, and the UN has just given them a very clear steer:Countries must make an unprecedented effort to cut their levels of greenhouse gases ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2309) Mr. Spock
    Minor planet/asteroid (2309) Mr. Spock is named not for the character in Star Trek, but for a cat that was itself imperturbable, logical, intelligent and had pointed ears In a preceding blog post I introduced one of my favourite asteroids, (2472) Bradman, and also mentioned (6581) Sobers amongst a few ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Measles deaths and antivax misinformation
    Today the death toll from measles in Samoa rose to 32. All but four of the dead were less than 5 years old. Absolutely terrible, heartbreaking, news. That statistic alone should be enough to give the lie to the common claim by antivaccination activists plague enthusiasts that “measles is a ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Colombia: the state murder of Dilan Cruz
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh It is late here in Bogotá, almost 11.30pm on Monday the 25th of November as I write this. The day began full of hope with yet more massive marches throughout the country, a mix of the International Day of Non-Violence Against Women and the National Strike. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Anti-fluoride propagandists appear not to read the articles they promote
    Anti-fluoride activists are rubbing their hands in glee over what they claim is “yet another study” showing fluoride harms the brains of children. But their promotion relies on IQ relationships which the paper’s authors acknowledge disappearing when outliers or other factors are considered. And they completely ignore other relationships ...
    1 week ago
  • The rise and collapse of classical political economy
    The feature below is the conclusion of A History of Economic Thought, whose author was a leading Marxist economist in Russia in the early 20th century, Isaac Ilyich Rubin.  The book arose from a course he ran at Moscow University following the Russian Revolution.  First published in Russian in 1929, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2472) Bradman
    There are many thousands of asteroids with formal names, some humdrum but other more noteworthy (depending on your predilections). One of my favourites, the name of which I was involved in suggesting, is (2472) Bradman, named for the Australian cricketing great.  As a minor planet (synonym: asteroid) spotter, I have ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Some cheap soundbites i thought up while reading about the underwhelming Conservative manifesto
    Tory manifesto: big on austerity, low on promise, non-existent on delivery. The Tories: the party so big on ambition they couldn't be arsed writing a manifesto. MLK: "I have a dream!"BJ: "I'll just have a nap." Labour: Broadband!Tories: Narrow minds! Labour have hope, dreams and ambition. The Tories will save ...
    1 week ago
  • Measles vaccination required to travel to islands and Phillipines
    The Ministry of Health has announced that “people under the age of 50 travelling from New Zealand to Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji” are now on the list of national priorities for MMR vaccination. Given the outbreaks of measles in Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji, the Ministry of Health is ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Giving the finger to Beijing
    Hong Kong has been protesting for six months for, demanding democracy, human rights, and an end to police violence. Today, they went to the polls in district council elections - a low-level of government with virtually no power, similar to community boards in New Zealand. But while the positions themselves ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia’s national strike
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On Friday 22nd of November a curfew came into effect and troops were deployed on the streets, here in Bogota. It was the first time since September 1977 that a curfew had been imposed on the city. The decision was a cynical pre-planned ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • National supports slavery
    Meanwhile, while the government is planning to restore voting rights to prisoners, National is promising to turn our prisons into US-style slave-labour camps:The Opposition is proposing compulsory education, training or employment for prisoners who are serving sentences of two years or more. [...] On Sunday, National Party Leader Simon Bridges ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Erasing the infamy
    Last year, the Supreme Court confirmed that National's prisoner voting ban - a law so shoddily passed that it brought Parliament into disrepute - breached the Bill of Rights Act. This year, the Waitangi Tribunal added that it also breached the Treaty of Waitangi. And now, the government has finally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Trade unions that never fight the sex industry bosses
    Excerpts from Being and Being Bought, by Kajsa Ekis Ekman Spinifex Press, 2013. Ekman, a Swedish journalist and critic, brings together a Marxist and feminist analysis of prostitution and surrogacy in this groundbreaking book. This is the second part of a synopsis and brief commentary of the book by Daphna ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • A Team Approach to Tackling the Psychology Replication Crisis
    Dalmeet Singh Chawla In 2008, psychologists proposed that when humans are shown an unfamiliar face, they judge it on two main dimensions: trustworthiness and physical strength. These form the basis of first impressions, which may help people make important social decisions, from who to vote for to how long a ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Big Pharma has failed: the antibiotic pipeline needs to be taken under public ownership
    Claas Kirchhelle, University of Oxford; Adam Roberts, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and Andrew Singer, Centre for Ecology & Hydrology Antibiotics are among the most important medicines known to humankind, but we are running out of this crucial resource. Decisive action is needed if we are to retain access to ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • A Bloody Great Political Story (From A Parallel Universe).
    Things That Make You Go - Hmmmm: “All right. Let me come at this another way. I’m guessing that what you’ve got in that box contains names, dates, bank account numbers – all the details you need to put Winston Peters and Jacinda Ardern squarely in the cross-hairs. So, the first ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Submit!
    The Environment Committee has called for submissions on the Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading Reform) Amendment Bill. Submissions are due by Friday, 17 January 2020, and can be made online at the link above. The bill makes a number of changes to the ETS, including linking it to the carbon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Message From Messenger Park.
    Coasters Turn Out In Droves: It’s precisely the widening gulf between those with actual experience of things like guns, chainsaws and drilling machines, and those who regulate their use, that accounts for the angry crowd at Greymouth’s Messenger Park on Sunday, 17 November 2019. In the rarefied atmosphere where decisions ...
    2 weeks ago
  • JFK’s assassination: a bit of physics
    There are perennial arguments about the circumstances of the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963, and in particular whether more than one shooter is required by the evidence (such as the Zapruder film). Those who know little about physics frequently claim that the sharp backwards motion of JFK’s head as ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Is car washing so bad we need to ban it?
    Apparently, some people enjoy washing their cars. Each to his or her own, I suppose. I mean, some people like duck shooting, some people follow Coronation Street, and some people’s idea of a good day out is to sit on a grass bank at Seddon Park and watch cricket all ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • If Shane Jones isn’t corrupt, he is trying very hard to look it
    Last week we learned that New Zealand First had apparently tried to enrich itself from public office, with a dodgy forestry company linked to a number of NZ First figures sticking its hand out repeatedly for government money. Today in Question Time Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones had his ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: We need to end fossil fuels
    Finally, governments seem slowly to be beginning to act on climate change. But its not enough. While they're publicly signing up to targets, they're planning to destroy the world by continuing fossil fuel extraction:The world’s nations are on track to produce more than twice as much coal, oil and gas ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • As bad as we expected
    Stuff has begun interviewing NZ First's secret donors, and it turns out that its as bad as we expected. They start with racing industry figure Garry Chittick, who is predictably grumpy about NZ First's coalition choices. Meanwhile, I'm looking at the list of pork NZ First has effectively given its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Second (And Final?) Crucifixion Of Winston Peters.
    Stag At Bay: Twelve years ago, Winston Peters was still robust enough to come back from the political crucifixion which his political and media enemies had prepared for him. In his seventies now, the chances of a second resurrection are slim. We should, therefore, prepare for the last gasp of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Earth’s artificial rings
    Satellites pass over NZ all the time (literally). Here I focus on the 187 Planet Labs ‘Dove’ Earth-imaging satellites, and I show that one can determine in advance where they will be, enabling scientists on the ground to correlate their environmental and other data collection with opportunities to get imaging ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Softy Jejune Parson – the new Mother Superior of Wellington
      The Council of Disobedient Women has learned that the Prefect of Aro Valley has been promoted to a new role with the blessing of the Pope of Wellington. Softy Jejune Parson has been appointed Mother Superior of Woke Wellington for the work she has been doing calling out heretics, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Atlantic shakeup: US and UK leadership contenders ripping up the usual scripts?
    On both sides of the Atlantic, some purportedly “contentious” and “difficult to deal with” leadership contenders to lead the US and UK, as President and Prime Minister respectively, seem to have thrown a few spanners into the works of the normal messaging most are used to hearing constantly. Except they’re ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston is the PM’s problem
    In Question Time today the Prime Minister was naturally facing questions about Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and his dubious party financing arrangements, which seem to violate electoral finance law. Her response was to pretend that it was nothing to do with her, and that she is not responsible for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Eight Queen’s Counsel appointed under new criterion
    Eight Queen’s Counsel have been appointed under a process that includes the new criterion of a commitment to improving access to justice, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. “The new criterion was included this year. It emphasises that excellence and leadership in the profession can be seen through a wider, community ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Major expansion for Wellington’s Onslow College
    Onslow College in Wellington will get 20 new classrooms for more than 400 students, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. The much-needed investment will relieve growth pressure the school has been experiencing for some time. Seven existing classrooms which have deteriorated over time will also be replaced, bringing the total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Talented young Kiwis awarded PM’s Scholarships to Asia and Latin America
    More than 250 young New Zealanders will add international experience to their education, thanks to the latest Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia (PMSA) and Latin America (PMSLA), Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This round of scholarships supports 252 recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Government to improve competitiveness and transparency in the retail fuel market
    Consumers will benefit from a more competitive, transparent retail fuel market as a result of changes the Government will be making in response to the findings of the Commerce Commission’s study of the fuel sector. “We accept the Commission’s findings and, as the Prime Minister has said, we’re ready to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • More cancer medicines for more people
    Five new cancer medicines have now been funded this year, meaning thousands of people have more treatment options PHARMAC has today announced that it has approved two new medicines for funding – fulvestrant for breast cancer and olaparib for ovarian cancer. This follows earlier decisions on advanced lung cancer treatment alectinib, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Government acts to sort out electoral ‘coin toss’ problem
    The Minister of Local Government, Hon Nanaia Mahuta says the Government will consider making changes to local electoral legislation before the 2022 elections to fix the problems that have arisen where elections are settled by a coin toss.  The Minister says the recount process in the Murupara- Galatea ward at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • NZ to Join IMO Convention to Reduce Ship Emissions
    New Zealand will sign up to new international maritime regulations to reduce ship emissions and lift air quality around ports and harbours, Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter announced today. Subject to completion of the Parliamentary treaty examination process, New Zealand will sign up to Annex VI of MARPOL, an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Bill to empower urban development projects
    New legislation to transform our urban areas and create sustainable, inclusive and thriving communities will tomorrow be introduced to Parliament, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said. “The Urban Development Bill gives Kāinga Ora-Homes and Communities the tools it needs to partner with councils, communities, mana whenua and private developers to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Early Learning Action Plan to kickstart long term change
    Today’s launch of He taonga te Tamaiti: Every child a taonga: The Early Learning Action Plan 2019-2029 provides the foundation for long-lasting changes to early learning, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says.   “Early learning will be one of the Government’s top education priorities going into 2020,” Chris Hipkins said.   ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Climate change lens on major Government decisions
    Major decisions made by the Government will now be considered under a climate change lens, Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. “Cabinet routinely considers the effects of its decisions on human rights, the Treaty of Waitangi, rural communities, the disability community, and gender – now climate change will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Tertiary Education Commission Board announced
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins today announced the appointment of Māori education specialist Dr Wayne Ngata and Business NZ head Kirk Hope to the Board of the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC). Dr Alastair MacCormick has been reappointed for another term. “Wayne Ngata, Kirk Hope and Alastair MacCormick bring a great deal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Next phase of Pike River recovery underway in time for Christmas
    The next phase of the Pike River Re-entry project is underway, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little says. “Fresh air will be pumped into the Pike River Mine drift this week, following acceptance of the plan for re-entry beyond the 170m barrier by New Zealand’s independent health and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Insurance contracts to become easier to understand and fairer for consumers
    New Zealand consumers will have greater certainty about their insurance cover when they need to make claims as a result of proposed government changes. “Insurance is vitally important in supporting consumers and businesses to be financially resilient when unexpected events happen,” Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Kris Faafoi said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • A new opportunity for Ngāpuhi collective and regional negotiations
    The Crown is providing an opportunity for the hapu of Ngāpuhi to rebuild its framework from the ground up for collective negotiations to deal with its historical Treaty claims, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little and Minister for Māori Development Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The Crown is also ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Referendums Framework Bill passes third reading
    A Bill enabling referendums to be held with the 2020 General Election has passed its third reading. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Act is important for upholding the integrity of New Zealand’s electoral process. “The Government has committed to holding a referendum on legalising recreational cannabis at the next ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Referendums website and initial cannabis Bill launched
    The first release of public information on the two referendums to be held at next year’s General Election was made today with an informative new Government website going live. Additionally, the draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill has been released, showing the strict controls on cannabis that will apply if ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to ban foreign donations
    The Government is taking action to protect New Zealand from foreign interference in our elections by banning foreign donations to political parties and candidates, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. Legislation will be introduced to Parliament this afternoon and passed under urgency. “There’s no need for anyone other than New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Governments and tech converge to strengthen joint response to online terror events
    Governments and tech companies are holding a two-day workshop, hosted by YouTube/Google in Wellington, to test the Christchurch Call Shared Crisis Response Protocol. The workshop aims to refine and strengthen the response in the event of a terrorist attack with online implications. Companies, governments, civil society experts and NGOs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Cancer Control Agency to drive improved care
    The new independent Cancer Control Agency has formally opened today, delivering on the Government’s plan to improve cancer care in New Zealand.         Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Health David Clark marked the occasion by announcing the membership of the Advisory Council that will be supporting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Supporting small business to prosper
    Small businesses who deal with government departments are set to be paid faster and have improved cash flow as a result, under a new strategy released today. The Government is backing recommendations from the Small Business Council (SBC) and has agreed to implement three initiatives immediately to support business and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bill has biggest education changes in decades
    The Education and Training Bill 2019, introduced in Parliament today, proposes the biggest education changes in decades and is an important step towards improving success for all our learners, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “The Bill’s rewrite of education legislation is long overdue. Indeed one Education Act, parts of which ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bali Democracy Forum to focus on democracy and inclusivity
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Bali to represent New Zealand at the 12th Bali Democracy Forum that will be held on the 5-6 December. “The Forum is a valuable opportunity for Asia-Pacific countries to share experiences and best practice in building home-grown democracy and fostering ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Innovative technology and tools to better manage freedom camping
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