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Simon Bridges’ not very good first week

Written By: - Date published: 9:37 am, March 4th, 2018 - 44 comments

In this very important first week Simon Bridges has committed two major blunders. He has claimed he was environmentally friendly when any view of his Ministerial history would confirm that this is not the case. And he forgot his Government oversaw the stripping of democratic rights from all prisoners, and adjusted his position when his error was pointed out.

Why does Criminal Justice have to be so politicised?

Written By: - Date published: 9:49 am, February 25th, 2018 - 67 comments

Judith Collins has indicated that the chances of a mature debate about Criminal Justice are slim.

Little proposes radical shake up of the Criminal Justice system

Written By: - Date published: 11:39 am, February 24th, 2018 - 152 comments

Andrew Little has called for a complete change the way criminal justice works.  But National’s initial response suggests that the prospects of a mature discussion on the issue are slim.

Rimutaka Prison.

Written By: - Date published: 7:03 am, January 28th, 2018 - 51 comments

Who are the bigger criminals?


Three strikes law to go

Written By: - Date published: 3:04 pm, November 1st, 2017 - 147 comments

Andrew Little has announced that Act’s three strikes for offenders legislation is going to be repealed.

The Catholic Church is urging its parishoners to vote

Written By: - Date published: 8:15 am, July 21st, 2017 - 29 comments

The catholic bishops of Aotearoa have released a pamphlet urging parishoners to vote. And apart from conservative positions on euthenasia and drug liberalisation the policies they support have a decidedly progressive bent.

Nats panic over climbing prison population – I have some advice

Written By: - Date published: 7:22 am, July 15th, 2017 - 70 comments

The government is “seeking advice” over the skyrocketing prison population. I’m happy to oblige – but they aren’t going to like it…

Māori prison?

Written By: - Date published: 10:26 am, May 9th, 2017 - 68 comments

Andrew Little is not ruling out the ‘radical’ suggestion of a prison run on Maori values: ‘Whatever we’re doing now is wrong’.

NRT: The banality of evil

Written By: - Date published: 2:48 pm, March 6th, 2017 - 3 comments

I/S at No Right Turn: “This is where National’s cuts and austerity have taken us: to a place where Corrections tortures and abuses people because it is the “cheapest” way of managing them.”

The Chief Prison Inspector’s report on Serco and MECF

Written By: - Date published: 9:30 am, October 7th, 2016 - 44 comments

The Chief Prison Inspector’s report on Mount Eden Corrections Facility has now been released and has presented a damning judgment on Serco’s management of the prison.

America bails on private prisons

Written By: - Date published: 3:49 pm, August 19th, 2016 - 19 comments

America is bailing on private prisons because they don’t work. What’s the bet that National is ‘too proud and arrogant’ to follow suit.

Judith Collins is losing a PR battle with a patched Gang Member*

Written By: - Date published: 8:30 am, July 8th, 2016 - 322 comments

*title borrowed from @shakingstick.

National Ltd™’s Sam Lotu-Iiga tries to pull the wool over our eyes

Written By: - Date published: 9:02 am, December 4th, 2015 - 12 comments

It was suggested in Parliament that SERCO’s first place position on the Prison Performance Table had been the result of  Lotu-Iiga and his department having had the wool pulled over their eyes.

WMBAD: Prison

Written By: - Date published: 1:02 pm, October 16th, 2015 - 2 comments

Team White Man Behind A Desk are back with their final episode for 2015.

Serco has yet more explaining to do

Written By: - Date published: 10:15 am, August 24th, 2015 - 10 comments

New allegations that at least one Serco prison guard was active involved in Mt Eden’s “fight club”. In some ways the public mess that Serco has made of Mt Eden has done us all a favour

Jumped tripped or fell

Written By: - Date published: 11:36 am, July 29th, 2015 - 27 comments


It’s not just Serco, it’s state operated prisons

Written By: - Date published: 12:14 pm, July 25th, 2015 - 72 comments

Recent focus has been on the tragedy and incompetence of a Serco run private prison. But problems extend further than that, into the entire way NZ views its prison system. We need fundamental penal reform.

Admitting failure on private prisons

Written By: - Date published: 8:45 am, July 25th, 2015 - 32 comments

The Nats have been forced to call in the good old-fashioned state to clear up Serco’s mess.

An honest answer in question time

Written By: - Date published: 10:04 am, July 24th, 2015 - 14 comments


John Key explains

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, July 24th, 2015 - 87 comments

John Key on the death at a Serco run prison. Words fail me.

Corrections minister in trouble

Written By: - Date published: 3:39 pm, July 22nd, 2015 - 67 comments

Sam Lotu-Iiga appears to have been lying.

Serco should be sacked

Written By: - Date published: 4:50 pm, July 21st, 2015 - 46 comments

Video from the urgent debate today in Parliament concerning Serco and that company’s failure to abide by basic standards of imprisonment.

NRT: The left should not support prison slave labour

Written By: - Date published: 2:37 pm, September 11th, 2014 - 63 comments

With Labour supporting the plan, I/S at No Right Turn makes the case against “working prisons”.

And now for the real news…

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, March 21st, 2014 - 14 comments

Rockstar economy”?   Let’s hear it for another chorus of,”There is no depression in New Zealand”!  Demographia reports on absolute food and housing poverty for too many Kiwis.  Simon Collins reports on the ethnic inequality gaps & high rates of Maori imprisonment.

Songs from the inside out

Written By: - Date published: 12:36 pm, February 24th, 2014 - 12 comments

I looked at some local newspapers to get away from the endless support for neoliberal values that dominates out MSM.  I found people living with unaffordable housing – & how the power of song can unite people in their struggles at the sharp end of the big inequality gap. Maori TV, “Songs from the Inside”.

State of Nations

Written By: - Date published: 6:11 pm, January 29th, 2014 - 24 comments

This post isn’t a ‘contrast and compare’ piece on the policy announcements of National, the Greens and Labour. Enough to say that National are pursuing privatisation while both Labour and Green are at least trying to do good things.

Shame about the reality of the bigger picture then.

‘Locked Up Warriors’: 101 East

Written By: - Date published: 8:20 pm, November 9th, 2013 - 95 comments

On 101 East on Al Jazeera. Too many people in NZ prisons, especially Maori: too many in poverty; too much money spent on prisons; not enough for low income communities; some very good community initiatives. Is this a fair representation?

Statistic of the Day

Written By: - Date published: 10:58 am, August 14th, 2013 - 46 comments

World incarceration rate: ~130 per 100,000

NZ incarceration rate: 197 per 100,000

Outsourcing: Scamming the system

Written By: - Date published: 9:32 am, July 19th, 2013 - 21 comments

A new report on the UK government’s outsourcing of public sector work is damning. Necessary and basic work to fulfill individual and social needs, (eg social security, unemployment, health care, education) is being “gamed” and scammed by monopolistic private contractors. Key’s government favours outsourcing to private profiteers.

They’re trying to build a prison/for you & me to live in

Written By: - Date published: 8:47 am, September 21st, 2012 - 16 comments

National is celebrating the creation of 1300 jobs (only 300 permanent) with a prison. How many more prisons would they have to build to reverse the increase in unemployment under their watch and create 65,000 permanent jobs? Only 217. It’s ironic that the only job creation the free-market loving Nats can trumpet is a government-paid for prison.

NoRightTurn: Private prisons still failing

Written By: - Date published: 8:08 am, July 6th, 2012 - 23 comments

NRT reports: When the government introduced private prisons, they promised us that it would lead to better performance. But six months on, Serco’s Mt Eden Corrections Facility is still failing to meet basic performance targets. And remember, these are intentionally soft targets, set below Corrections’ performance so National could declare privatisation a success.

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