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Tampa, Ardern and positioning small countries

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, November 16th, 2017 - 41 comments

There are major similarities between Helen Clark’s decision to accept into New Zealand refugees from the Tampa boat and Jacinda Ardern’s pushing for New Zealand to accept refugees based on Manus Island.

The Yellow Peril?

Written By: - Date published: 10:30 pm, November 15th, 2017 - 338 comments

What’s with the academic panic epidemic about China? Two in our media in the same week, referencing each other with vague warnings about the Chinese bogey. It’s not quite Lionel Terry in Haining Street again; more likely in my view a case of singing to someones else’s geopolitical tune. No prizes for guessing whose.

 

Election autopsies

Written By: - Date published: 12:31 pm, November 13th, 2017 - 29 comments

US democratic activists have conducted a number of reviews on what went wrong at the last election.  The conclusions they have reached could helpfully inform New Zealand political activists on what to do in 2020.

Ardern has words for Trump and Turnbull

Written By: - Date published: 8:16 am, November 13th, 2017 - 67 comments

Jacinda Ardern has publicly criticised Donald Trump for idiot treating and Malcolm Turnbull for unacceptable handling of the Manus crisis.

Guns don’t shoot people, men do

Written By: - Date published: 6:33 am, November 7th, 2017 - 200 comments

Maybe it’s time to broach the elephant in the living room.

@realDonaldTrump does not exist

Written By: - Date published: 6:27 am, November 4th, 2017 - 4 comments

For a brief moment, the internets rejoiced.

Jacinda Ardern, Donald Trump and political manners

Written By: - Date published: 2:42 pm, November 2nd, 2017 - 12 comments

In terms of style and approach Jacinda Ardern is radically different to Donald Trump.

Trump spins as Manafort is charged

Written By: - Date published: 4:14 pm, October 31st, 2017 - 104 comments

The indictments have been laid and the recriminations are starting.  Looks like the Trump Whitehouse is starting to self destruct.

Who’s in trouble in the USA?

Written By: - Date published: 7:24 am, October 30th, 2017 - 73 comments

More trouble for Donald Trump as it is expected someone in his camp will shortly be charged with offences by the special prosecutor Robert Mueller.

Facebook and democracy

Written By: - Date published: 7:56 am, October 16th, 2017 - 27 comments

A long and interesting read in The Atlantic. “The very roots of the electoral system had been destabilized.”

Passchendaele and Pyongyang

Written By: - Date published: 3:14 pm, October 12th, 2017 - 19 comments

The massive artillery barrage at Passchendaele was supposed to cut the German wire and make advance easy. All it did was churn up the mud though which so many doomed New Zealanders slogged and died. A monument to military incompetence and political disaster. These days they prefer bombs, which are equally deadly and equally futile. Its time we said no more.

Guns

Written By: - Date published: 10:42 am, October 3rd, 2017 - 155 comments

Another gun massacre has occurred in the United States.  And the well worn excuses and justifications by the right and the gun lobby are again being used.

US presidential campaign heats up along with the hurricanes

Written By: - Date published: 4:00 pm, September 12th, 2017 - 9 comments

The first contender has declared, albeit so far in a humorous manner. Less humorous has been the hurricanes that have been hitting southern states this season. You can understand why the oil industries anti-scientist Scott Pruitt that Trump put in charge of the EPA doesn’t want to talk about it.

Middle East Changes

Written By: - Date published: 1:58 pm, August 27th, 2017 - 70 comments

If there is a change of Government what should Labour do about requests for military assistance in the Middle East?

Political Statues

Written By: - Date published: 12:16 pm, August 25th, 2017 - 42 comments

America is experiencing difficulties because of the celebration by the right of statutes of their racist heroes.  Why does New Zealand not have this problem?

Godwin on Godwin

Written By: - Date published: 6:20 am, August 20th, 2017 - 83 comments

It’s ok to call Nazis Nazis.

Bye bye Bannon

Written By: - Date published: 2:30 pm, August 19th, 2017 - 26 comments

Breitbart’s loss is the White House’s gain as the revolving door continues.  And the question will be asked.  Was it Trump’s appallingly bad handling of the Charlottesville riots that caused Bannon’s demise?

Are Government-business Think Tanks worthwhile?

Written By: - Date published: 12:41 pm, August 17th, 2017 - 7 comments

In America Donald Trump has abandoned business think tanks that he established not that long ago.  During the last Labour Government Helen Clark established the Growth and Innovation Advisory Board with mixed results.  What should a Jacinda Ardern led Labour-Green coalition do?

Fire and Fury over North Korea

Written By: - Date published: 3:00 pm, August 12th, 2017 - 60 comments

Donald Trump may not know it but Koreans certainly remember  the last time the United States unleashed fire and fury over North Korea. In the 1950s, B-29s used bombs and napalm to flatten every North Korean city. Gen Curtis Lemay boasted that the USAF killed off 20% of the population. That’s why this time they have nuclear weapons.

Trump to Scaramucci – you’re fired!

Written By: - Date published: 7:23 am, August 1st, 2017 - 4 comments

The media is reporting that Anthony Scaramucci has been fired after only ten days in the job as White House communications director.

US Leaves Kansas.

Written By: - Date published: 4:28 pm, July 31st, 2017 - 18 comments

I guess it’s kind of hard to anchor something that’s all up in the air…

American political right -spectacular self-harm

Written By: - Date published: 9:51 am, July 29th, 2017 - 42 comments

I know that insane news out of America has become predictably ho-hum, but this week has been stunning. There is now a real risk that the Republican administration will break healthcare deliberately and burn their own people out of spite. That’s the level of right-wing politics in America.

A tale of three immigrants

Written By: - Date published: 8:52 am, July 29th, 2017 - 26 comments

The Government is refusing to allow a Tongan family with a very sick child and an American family who ran a very successful cafe from staying in New Zealand but rolled out the red carpet to an uber rich American who did not meet all of the requirements.

The Democrats and Russia

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, July 26th, 2017 - 66 comments

The Trump presidency appears to be in a death spiral because of the Russia issue.  But the Democrats are not taking advantage.  Why?

Imagine the world without America

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, July 23rd, 2017 - 63 comments

America used to be the most powerful nation in the world.  But things are changing.

Who are the real enemies of the centre left?

Written By: - Date published: 11:22 am, July 15th, 2017 - 80 comments

Simon Wilson recently claimed that left wingers and party members are problems for and enemies of Labour and the Greens.  This is why I think he is wrong.

G20: Trump isolated and friendless

Written By: - Date published: 6:17 am, July 10th, 2017 - 27 comments

ABC news political editor Chris Uhlmann’s brutal takedown of Trump goes viral.

The Good the Bad and the Ugly

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, July 4th, 2017 - 9 comments

Ad asks is the world more secure than a year ago? Is the danger of serious economic crisis higher or lower? Are the institutional arrangements and norms that resolve conflicts and enhance the prospects for international cooperation more or less robust than they were in July 2016.

The NRA declares war on reality

Written By: - Date published: 9:01 am, June 30th, 2017 - 39 comments

The National Rifle Association in America has released a video which essentially advocates for violence against liberal resistance to conservatism.

Should The Left Do Authoritarian Populism Like The Right Does?

Written By: - Date published: 10:17 am, June 21st, 2017 - 54 comments

What if the left had an authoritarian populist in power and got some stuff done?

New Zealand folds and apologises to Israel

Written By: - Date published: 10:34 am, June 14th, 2017 - 81 comments

New Zealand has completely backed down from its original position of opposing the illegal occupation by Israel of Palestinian land and apologised to Israel for damaging the relationship.

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