Bouquets for the new government

Written By: - Date published: 6:15 am, November 9th, 2017 - 64 comments
Categories: Mining, wages, welfare, workers' rights - Tags: , , , ,

Highlighting some of the good stuff and moves in the right direction,

From Stuff,

That would likely include reducing the level of data collected, so vulnerable people could not be identified at an individual level and removing the reporting on welfare liability dependency, the new Social Development Minister has confirmed.

Social investment is based on an idea that Government spending should be judged on its ability to avoid further Government spending down the track.

“We don’t agree with New Zealanders being deemed potential liabilities for the state. With that negative stigma put on New Zealand citizens, with them being deemed potential risks and predictive risk modelling used to assess risk,” said Sepuloni.

So glad we are done with the old creepy, stalker government for now.

 

The Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage has today confirmed that the new Government will strengthen the protection for public conservation land by making it off-limits for new mining.

“Public conservation lands are set aside for nature to thrive and for New Zealanders and visitors to enjoy. Mining, especially open-cast mining runs counter to that. It destroys indigenous vegetation and habitats, permanently changes natural landscapes and can create sizeable waste rock dumps with a risk of acid mine drainage polluting waterways.

“New Zealanders expect to see our conservation lands and their wild landscapes and indigenous plants and wildlife protected from being dug up by bulldozers and diggers.

 

 

64 comments on “Bouquets for the new government”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    I was struck how the Herald gave great moment to English’s “fiery” first speech as opposition leader, but didn’t bother with the PM’s reply – which apparently was very good. Expect more bias by omission from the right wing press over the next three years. In fact,l I expect the National opposition will be treated as if it is still the government by the pale, stale, male, FPP obsessed, MSM dinosaurs for the next three years.

    • tracey 1.1

      Yeah that seems to be a pattern. I do not recall Mr Key being relegated so quickly in 2008 ( but concede he may have been because it was 9 years ago and memory fades). Ardern’s reply was equally worthy of highlighting. Especially when you apply the journalist code requirement for balance.

      I also note that English is getting used to criticise Labour policy on TV before a Labour MP is shown explaining it

    • Ed 1.2

      The Herald is a Tory tabloid rag. What do you expect?
      Fortunately it is becoming less relevant.
      Younger folk do not read it.

    • cleangreen 1.3

      National = ‘The negative party.’

  2. eco maori 2

    This data collection drive that national was on was not about providing us with better public services . It is all about having levers to pull to control us look at Kharl WiRepa a talented young Kiwi Maori cultured person who we should have helped climb his ladder of life .
    He had to be creative to survive the welfare system national/Key designed to control and suppress OUR people which just happens to be predominately Maori who need this help to survive. He broke through nationals tentacles of suppression to FAME just to have them grease his lifes ladder and pull him down PS I hope someone heard my calls to help Kharl as he is a talented Person. Then we have Winston Peters incident well just before that happened I predicted bull would throw anyone under the bus and wallar this is easy to see.
    Its good to see some CEO stepping OUR coalition government need to clean all the dust / shit out of OUR cupboards . And put people in that are there to serve the public positively and not just there back pocket/ national. Ka pai

    • cleangreen 2.1

      Yep eco maori ,

      National Party HQ intellegence was run from the ‘infamous’ Steven Joyce insprired “do everything agency” MBIE, ‘Ministry of Bussiness Innovation and Employment’ which is/was (we hope shortly to be broken up by labour/ NZF) an intellegence collection and command centre for the ruling National Party, – so Labour/NZF need to de-construct ths evil agency ASAP.

      Labour lead policy will be stymied by this evil agency if labour do not break (MBIE) ‘Ministry of Bussiness Innovation and Employment’ up again and restore those agencies as seperate icons of our democracy again not to be controlled by one MP as Steven Joyce did with pure unbridled malice.

  3. Grey Area 3

    I commented the day the new government was sworn in how good it was even then to have a “government for all New Zealanders”. After nine oppressive years of lies, obfuscation, corruption and incompetence I feel like the drapes have been pulled back and the windows thrown open.

    Seeing the National Party thrashing around in parliament like a vindictive dinosaur is disappointing but not surprising. I have no expectation that they can in any way grow up and engage with the political process in the best interests of all New Zealanders. A dinosaur doesn’t change its scales and they are still the same nasty bunch, they’ve just changed seats.

    They will still need to watched as getting hit by a dinosaur tail still hurts but hopefully the more they show their nasty side in the House the more people will see them for the sort of people they are.

    I watch Parliament TV occasionally and find it enlightening especially for getting a feel for the nature of the people found there. As result some people go up in my estimation (like Tracey Martin did yesterday) and some go down. If you want to see the true nature of people like English and Key, watch them speaking in parliament. The mask they display elsewhere slips and you get a glimpse of the real nature behind it.

    It is so refreshing to have a government doing stuff and so far doing the right stuff. The list is extensive already but yesterday for example Ardern indicated there could be enquiry into the NZDF over Operation Burnham and their actions following it. We all know there should have been already as it is the right course of action but not under English.

    And she hinted that there is an issue with the state of New Zealand’s education property portfolio which has come to light with the change in government and I’m sure there will be more of that sort of thing.

    I still have grave reservations that Labour may let us down over TPPA-11 but otherwise “let the sunshine in”.

    • weka 3.1

      There’s also no indication that they will raise benefits so I don’t see them as governing for all NZers. But yes, having the sunshine is a huge relief. I don’t remember if it was like this in 1999.

      • Grey Area 3.1.1

        I was quoting Ardern and I have my reservations too but I am just enjoying the moment. Mind you I learned a bitter lesson after listening to Barack Obama’s first inauguration speech with such a sense of hope and expectation.

      • Kay 3.1.2

        @Weka, I think it’s easier if we just go on the assumption of no benefit increase, it’s pretty well understood Lab (and probably NZF) have no interest in going down that path. If for any reason something eventuates in the next 3 years then consider it a pleasant surprise. One of the few things I do remember post 1999, aside from the sheer relief that the nightmare of the Natz were finally gone- Labour’s total betrayal of beneficiaries and that I’ve been a loyal Green voter ever since.

        Other than that, also enjoying the bits of sunshine 🙂

        • weka 3.1.2.1

          Yes, it’s hard to not have the same feeling about this time re beneficiaries, and it’s hard to get across to other people why that is so and why it’s important.

        • Tracey 3.1.2.2

          It is going to be hard to achieve poverty reduction targets without increasing benefits… which includes to the Disabled communities.

          Consider for a moment if you are born with a disability not caused by medical misadventure what are your entitlements? Then consider if you are working and have an accident rendering you disabled you get 80% of your wage plus adaptive costs etc…

          So why are those born with disabilities not getting at least 80% of the average wage? I use average because our last govt based everything on rose coloured averages.

          Kay am I right in suggesting a gaping disparity exists in this regard?

          • Kay 3.1.2.2.1

            Tracy, a very gaping disparity and getting bigger all the time.
            I’ve long given up trying to understand the logic but will never forgive the system that lets this happen.

            Also remember that it’s not always disabilities people are born with- a good example is something like MS. Not covered by ACC so once you can’t work anymore you’re be relegated to a regular benefit with a nightmare to get any help with your wheelchair/caring etc. As opposed to someone who paralysed themselves (avoidably) from speeding or drunk driving…

            • weka 3.1.2.2.1.1

              Seriously bad and something no politician appears to have on their radar politically. Mind you, I used to say that about abatement rates and not so long ago. Things can change fast.

              People who don’t have income or have low income are badly hit too. Someone paralysed in a car accident who earns a $100,000 salary is far better off than someone with the same kind of injury from the same kind of accident but who was a student at the time. I’ve known self-employed people to get screwed too, because the year before the accident they weren’t working much and were doing other things with their life and so ended up with 80% of not enough to live on long term.

              A big mess.

      • marty mars 3.1.3

        Have they said they won’t raise benefits?

        Big job governing everyone – be good to start with the most vulnerable and then sort others.

        I like a lot of these early moves – a government of action and change is needed to fix the gnat bullshit.

        • weka 3.1.3.1

          I think when you start saying these vulnerable people here are worthy, but we’re not even going to talk about these vulnerable people over here that we don’t have a plan for (and by plan I mean not even a hint of one), and you do that in a bene-bashing, Painter on the roof culture, then there is a fundamental problem. It’s Labour’s version of the deserving poor. It’s dangerous, it’s unfair, and it runs counter to the idea that everyone deserves help.

          I want a government that has a baseline of every NZ deserves a life of meaning and free from poverty. How the detail is worked out over time is a different matter. I’m not seeing that baseline from Labour.

          • marty mars 3.1.3.1.1

            I agree that the vulnerable need support and a platform to ensure their voices are heard. I want them heard.

            I do think that whilst this labour party has its whakapapa this iteration is unique and must forge its own path. To learn from the past – to create a better future. So yes it is the same party of douglas and the painter on the roof, it is also different.

            Big chance for this government to really help so many who most need the help. I hope they step up and truely do what needs to be done to change the toxic narratives around those, we as a society, financially support.

            • weka 3.1.3.1.1.1

              Kei te pai. I think it’s possible they will change and I really hope those of us who are concerned about the benefit issues are wrong.

              • Yep me too. It would be horrible for them to fail on this.

              • I also want to say

                Beneficiary voices are some of the most unheard in our society. When those voices do speak up they can be often discarded or disregarded which can further alienate and ‘other’ people. I want to listen and hear from people worried about these issues and I don’t want to shut down the debate. Thank you to everyone who has been able to talk and thanks weka for raising these important issues via posts.

                • weka

                  Cheers marty, really appreciate that. My hope is that we can find some good discussion space for both the people that are cheering Labour on and those that are actually quite fearful of what is going to happen.

            • Tracey 3.1.3.1.1.2

              One way the vulnerable could be heard was through their union but successive govts eroded that

          • AB 3.1.3.1.2

            Weka, agree totally with you sentiments in that last paragraph.
            A bit of semantic nit-picking. I don’t like the phrase ‘vulnerable people’. I think it carries the taint of social investment theory. The implication is that the vulnerability is intrinsic to the person – that the person is not quite right, not quite ‘up to it’ somehow.
            Unless we convey the idea that these are completely normal people who are made vulnerable by the way we organise our economy and society, then I feel we are doing the enemy’s work for them.

            • Matthew Whitehead 3.1.3.1.2.1

              That’s certainly the messaging the National party has infected it with, but all vulnerable generally means is that they’re people who need some help to deal with their problems. That’s not a bad thing, especially if they admit it and if the community is prepared to help.

              The problem right now is that last bit- we’re not really willing to help enough for people who need permanent support, or for those who need medium-term support to get back on their feet. Core benefits might be adequate for some people’s short-term needs, if they have savings. But they’re not livable.

            • weka 3.1.3.1.2.2

              Thanks, I hadn’t realised that about National’s social investment theory. Do they use the term ‘vulnerable’?

              The problem for me is that as someone with a disability I am vulnerable, and it’s the inability of the state to acknowledge that that is a big part of the problem. Like Matt says, some people need help. Not to get themselves out of a situation but because they themselves are not able to manage on their own. National, and Labour to an extent, see welfare as wrong, that everyone should be able to get back on their feet and then they won’t need help any more. That paradigm damages people who can’t work (short, medium or long term/permanent).

              Vulnerable means able to be harmed. I use it because I am pushing back against the culture that says we should all man up/pull ourselves up by out bootstraps. Vulnerability is an asset to society, because it is tied to compassion, and we are woefully wrong to be stigmatising and punishing people for it.

              This by the way is part of why I am stoked to see Mallard with that baby in his arms.

              Having said that, I agree with you about normal. I use social theories of disability to understand disability, and thus so much of disability is created by society and as you say the way we organise.

              • Incognito

                When you think about, it is really about improving the conditions for those whom are colloquially called “vulnerable”. In contrast, National’s focus appeared to be on the actual people, their choices & responsibilities. So, instead of talking about “vulnerable people” perhaps we ought to talk about “people in sub-optimal conditions”, which would shift the focus to conditions as the key issue? Sub-optimal should not be seen as a euphemism for precarious, dangerous, threatening, for example; it can encompass a much wider range of needs and rights. It might carry less stigma and be more inclusive …

                • weka

                  It still leaves the problem of vulnerable being somehow wrong though. So we can fix the situations and if the person still isn’t ok there is something wrong with them. I’m not sure that the framing is the issue so much as the core values. If people think being dependent is wrong, then dependent people will always be at risk. It’s this distinction I will be looking for from Labour. They’re talking some good talk at the moment, but I will be very interested for instance to see what they do with the WINZ transformation, and whether those core issues remain.

                  For me it’s an absolute no brainer. If you accept that there are people who can’t supplement their income with work, then you either give them enough to live meaningful lives, or you say that they’re not entitled to freedom from poverty. Labour could very easily increase SLP and do so in the context of re-educating NZ on what that means while playing a longer game pushing back against the Painter on the roof stuff. But they will then have to fix access to SLP and on and on it goes.

                  Better to just start with the premise that all NZers deserve good lives. At the moment they are saying that but it’s not actually reflected in policy because they are intentionally excluding classes of people.

      • cleangreen 3.1.4

        Me either Weka I do not recall it was like ‘a door being swung open’ in 1999.

        I was a Green Party member then and in the old reminants of the ‘alliance Party and we felt warmer that at least, then as we had a new labour government that may push our policies then.

        But jacinda has really openned the door, and invited us in fully here.

        She is a real joy bless her, and the National Party are very bitter now and scarred shitless at her sold stance to represent all kiwis wishes and not just the rich now, so good on her.

        I loved her note to us this morning here is a copy,

        I feel warmer today thanks to Jacinda.
        Letter from Jacinda; 9/11/17.
        Dear ……………….,
        With the opening of Parliament today, the Government began our legislative agenda. This is where the real change begins.
        I want the way this Government runs to be different. It will be a Government of transformation. We’ll put people right at the heart of our agenda ¬– every decision will be assessed on its impact on people and at every turn, our Government will be guided by kindness and compassion.
        As well as our values, we laid out our policy plans for the term today. They’re firmly focussed on making New Zealanders’ lives even better. We will fix the housing crisis, build up our education system, ensure everyone can get the healthcare they need, take action on climate change, develop our regions and raise everyone’s incomes.
        We have the plan and the policies to do all this.

      • beatie 3.1.5

        The following excerpt is from a panel discussion on disability issues and benefit reform, held on September 6th and attended by NZ First candidate Talani Meikle, Grant Robertson (Labour), Mojo Mathers (Greens) and Nationals Nicola Willis.

        I heard the discussion on RNZ and I was struck by Robertson’s grudging response, BUT he did say it.

        ”Robertson was less clear than Mathers in his initial answer on whether Labour would increase the rate of supported living payments, but when pressed for a ‘yes or no’ answer by moderator Susie Ferguson, said: “Yes.”.”

        https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2017/09/06/46460/labour-would-restructure-work-and-income

        • weka 3.1.5.1

          Thanks for that. Robertson is reported as talking about SLP, which is great but it still leaves many disabled people in poverty because the state puts barriers in the way of getting onto SLP. So I guess the next question for Labour is what they will do about that and the designated doctor system that is currently used to deny disabled people that income (they end up on the dole instead, albeit with a temporary but ultimately perpetually renewed exemption from work requirements).

          Did RNZ play the whole meeting, or was it covered in a report? I’d like to see if I can track it down.

  4. DH 4

    It’s a relief they’re canning big data. It was never going to solve any of society’s problems, all I saw was a makework scheme for overpaid beancounters.

  5. Macro 7

    Great jubilation here in the Coromandel wrt the canning of mining in the Conservation Estate. Many people over the past 9 years have been protesting weekly if not daily over the continued trashing of conservation land by miners in our region over a few ounces of gold and silver. We don’t need the bloody stuff – there are thousands of tonnes of it locked up in bullion safes around the world – so its simply bullshit to insist that we need to mine more. If its needed for practical purposes – use the stuff we already have!
    Well done Eugene. A win for sense.

    • weka 7.1

      Oh yes! Remembering how much time and energy has been sucked up having to push back against really stupid shit, and what that time and energy can be used for now instead!

  6. cleangreen 8

    They should use the holes those mines they have dug out now to house the national party and give their homes to the poor homeless now as it was the National Party that allowed those holes/mines to be dug in the first place right?

    • The decrypter 8.1

      I’m sure james would lay a claim to one of those vacant holes. Has anyone told him about them? maybe he will read about them here.

      • cleangreen 8.1.1

        The decrypter,

        Yes we should advise all National cling-on’s like james that they should move ‘underground now’ and use the holes they dug for their habitation as the homeless need their homes now.

      • Robert Guyton 8.1.2

        What would I do, td, in James’ absence? A bridge without a troll is like the National Party; hollow, man!

        • The decrypter 8.1.2.1

          Robert please–a hole man –a hole, not a bridge,– I just don’t know— modern youth , –a summer home for james , Like Siberia in some ways.

  7. mac1 9

    Another bouquet from me goes to the new Prime Minister who sent a substantial and thoughtful message to a local interfaith meeting between Christian and Muslims in Blenheim. This was greeted with a substantial and spontaneous clapping at its conclusion. A smaller bunch of flowers to the local National MP who attended and spoke- smaller because it’s his electorate but good on him though.

    Not so many bouquets though to some local Christian churches who did not even advertise the event. This area is becoming more and more diverse, and entrenched social and religious conservatism is still with us.

    Reflecting the shrinking and changing nature of our society, the local news did not attend. Very rarely do reporters attend events outside business hours.

  8. Brigid 10

    I can’t get over how gorgeous that photo is.
    Here it is again.
    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DOGkN3YUQAARvOk.jpg:large

  9. McFlock 11

    I’m still cautiously optimistic, but now also quite cheerful.

    TPP issue remains, but apparently Trudeau won’t be signing the tpp at apec if it’s a shit deal for Canada, so there might be more hope on that front for us, too – makes it easier if it doesn’t look like we’d be the only hold-out.

  10. piper 12

    Trev,knowin inside the house and elsewhere as the duck,has had a shaky day as as he continued to attempt to rule the house with the contest between Bridges and Jones was all to be arguement without Bridges being pulled up to ask the speaker supplementary question.is on the hoof listening comment.

  11. piper 13

    Duck,how long have you wished,and given,shame your wording indigenous reading was total shame.Duck,respect,how long you been saying its me,now it is,respect for the reo,without the card fluent should your dream be.Chose to do it fluent,or not.

  12. piper 14

    It is not good our speakers pronunciation of Maori.

  13. piper 15

    Shall or should we aid that.

  14. cleangreen 16

    Happy days folks.

    Jacinda is overseas sticking up for our best interests, and will not sign the TPPA if it has ISDS and any other controls to errode our democracy in it as Canada and other countries are not signing it if these draconian clauses are still in that awful corporate controlled agreement that we should never call “a free trade agreement” as it is not.

    • Alan 16.1

      you are going to be so disappointed ……….

    • weka 16.2

      Afaik, the only thing Labour are objecting to is the ISDS clauses. I’ve not seen them say they are renegotiating other aspects. Please let us know if you know different.

  15. piper 17

    Labour now you have that thing,know control,patrinisation,no,social care is in the wind,all is possible,please a pakeah with enough care to pronounce Maori.

  16. Angel Fish 18

    Treat citizens like humans!
    What an idea!

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