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Te Whare Pounamu #1

Written By: - Date published: 9:21 am, September 2nd, 2019 - 17 comments

When an organisation that exists to help abused people, itself abuses people, I suspect many people will have a lot to say. Here’s my initial take.

The Teachers’ strike

Written By: - Date published: 7:32 am, June 6th, 2019 - 77 comments

Teaching is approaching a crisis point.  Sure it has taken 9 years of the last Government’s rule to wreck the system. But this Government is expected to repair quickly the damage that the last Government caused.  

Bene bashing

Written By: - Date published: 11:27 am, June 1st, 2019 - 101 comments

National has engaged in the most crass form of beneficiary bashing in opposing Government changes to the benefit system announced in the budget and passed under urgency.

All hail our computer overlords

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, February 24th, 2019 - 34 comments

IBM has staged a debate between an IBM computer and the world debating champion. The human won but the debate suggests that it may be just a matter of time … and the computer had remarkable things to say about poverty.

The UN is shocked by NZ’s child poverty rates

Written By: - Date published: 11:40 am, July 22nd, 2018 - 89 comments

Earlier this year the United Nations expressed shock and concern at New Zealand’s rates of child poverty, homelessness, incarceration and violence.  What is this Government doing to address these issues?

The right wing media’s infatuation with breeding

Written By: - Date published: 8:57 am, July 3rd, 2018 - 99 comments

Elements in the media clearly think that the payment of a modest amount to families with young babies will cause them to breed babies for a business.

Coming up, Babies!

Written By: - Date published: 12:37 pm, June 15th, 2018 - 68 comments

Jacinda’s baby is going to be big news soon.

Housing Band Aids

Written By: - Date published: 9:54 am, May 26th, 2018 - 54 comments

What lies behind the homelessness crisis in Aotearoa New Zealand? Is it a housing crisis or are the homeless to blame? If the problem is a housing crisis, why is there an assumption that the homeless themselves need extra services to secure and maintain rental housing?

Voltairine de Cleyre

Written By: - Date published: 6:39 am, December 9th, 2017 - 15 comments

When history buries treasures, those treasures don’t have to remain buried.

Malnutrition – in NZ FFS

Written By: - Date published: 6:20 am, September 20th, 2017 - 49 comments

Stunningly depressing piece by Kirsty Johnston in The Herald yesterday – Number of New Zealand children hospitalised with malnutrition doubles as food costs bite.

Proud of your legacy, National?

Labour’s families package

Written By: - Date published: 6:22 am, September 14th, 2017 - 5 comments

Under Labour’s Families Package 70% of families with kids do better than they do under National’s tax plan. Labour launched their online calculator yesterday…

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.

Nat / ACT don’t think poor people should have kids

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, July 13th, 2017 - 128 comments

ACT’s David Seymour thinks that poor people shouldn’t be allowed to have kids. If that sounds familiar it should – the Nats have said more or less the same thing over the years.

Labour’s Targeted Families Package

Written By: - Date published: 1:54 pm, July 11th, 2017 - 100 comments

As covered by Vernon Small on Stuff: “Labour is promising to scrap National’s Budget tax cut plan. Instead it will funnel the cash into higher Working for Families payments and extra help for those with young children. It’s a package it says will deliver up to $48 a week extra to middle income families.”

What’s going on at the BBC?

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, March 18th, 2017 - 7 comments

And now for something completely different.

Social investment meets the surveillance state

Written By: - Date published: 11:14 pm, March 4th, 2017 - 45 comments

First they came for the budgeting services. Now we know that every social service agency  has to provide clients’ private personal data to the Ministry of Social Development or get no funding. Apparently it’s  essential to Bill English’s much-touted and little understood “social investment” strategy, which is sounding more like something out of Orwell’s 1984. […]

Russia’s ‘traditional family values’

Written By: - Date published: 11:05 am, February 12th, 2017 - 22 comments

Constructive and positive ‘conservative’ organisations everywhere should be outraged at the way the use of ‘traditional family values’ gets corrupted, and they should be doing more to speak out against it.

QC describes Pike River mine as a ‘homicide scene’

Written By: - Date published: 10:11 am, November 22nd, 2016 - 51 comments

On Checkpoint Nigel Hampton QC described the Pike River mine as a ‘crime scene’ and a ‘homicide scene’, and he questioned the motives of those rushing to seal the mine.

Dr Kate Amore on Homelessness

Written By: - Date published: 9:52 pm, August 24th, 2016 - 17 comments

Dr Kate Amore and Rev Tric Malcolm will discuss this issue on Friday 26th August at 5:30pm at Connolly Hall, Wellington. Amore’s research released today shows “As the housing market gets tighter, single people have more flexibility and potentially more options open to them, whereas families with children don’t. People [landlords] are less likely to want them, and they have more requirements of housing,” she said. All welcome.

CYF massively underfunded

Written By: - Date published: 10:30 am, July 26th, 2016 - 28 comments

National pays electoral homage to our vulnerable children. They talk a big game about putting “the needs of our most vulnerable children and families at the centre of decisions”. Their actions tell a different story – of under-funding at CYF and falling numbers of social workers.

Maori health and children not a priority

Written By: - Date published: 3:20 pm, July 11th, 2016 - 77 comments

Essential reading, two pieces highlighting institutional racism today. Someone needs to ask the Maori Party how proud they are to be propping up this government.

Be Like Dad, Keep Mum (in fear).

Written By: - Date published: 9:42 am, July 10th, 2016 - 62 comments

Temuera Morrison has made a powerful video for the Women’s Refuge annual appeal. He’s making a difference. You can do something the Key Government won’t do. You can make a difference. You can stop keeping mum about domestic violence and you can help fund your local refuge.

Parental leave – did English know or care what he was vetoing?

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, June 30th, 2016 - 84 comments

Bill English didn’t know the cost of the parental leave bill that he vetoed on the grounds of cost, and he didn’t care enough about it to speak to the matter in Parliament last night.

Petition against the veto of the paid parental leave bill

Written By: - Date published: 9:15 am, June 18th, 2016 - 19 comments

“We request that you withdraw the financial veto certificate against the Parental Leave and Employment Protection (Six Months’ Paid Leave and Work Contact Hours) Amendment Bill.” You can sign the petition here.

Nats overrule Parliament to veto parental leave extension

Written By: - Date published: 3:54 pm, June 16th, 2016 - 102 comments

So – like Canterbury, like Auckland, the democratic process can get stuffed as far as National are concerned.

Has NZ hit this milestone too?

Written By: - Date published: 8:32 am, June 6th, 2016 - 30 comments

For the first time in 130 years, more young adults (18 – 34) in America live with their parents than with a partner. How long before we pass the same milestone – or have we done so already?

Paid parental leave bill progress towards anti-democratic veto

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, May 26th, 2016 - 48 comments

Sue Moroney’s bill to extend paid parental leave passed its second reading last night – bravo to all those who supported it! The Nats’ threat to veto is profoundly anti-democratic, overriding the will of Parliament.

In Defense of Tony Veitch.

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 pm, May 8th, 2016 - 174 comments

I was asked by trp to respond to his post earlier today separately. I’ll start by re-quoting a comment from Anne: I can vouch for the truth of that statement. That is not to degrade the ever present ‘intimate’ violence perpetrated by men against women and children. However women are just as capable of performing […]

House Tales.

Written By: - Date published: 3:01 pm, March 22nd, 2016 - 32 comments

If ‘home is where the heart is’ then what’s the story when everything’s heartless?

The problem with free market capitalism

Written By: - Date published: 11:16 am, January 9th, 2016 - 248 comments

This morning’s Herald contains a story about a young man who with a family gift has managed to purchase eleven houses over the past five years and can afford to pay World of Warcraft all day.

Coleman to regulate high sugar industry

Written By: - Date published: 9:37 am, December 1st, 2015 - 32 comments

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said there is a voluntary regime in place for the manufacture and sale of high sugar food but where there is is self regulation it is often ignored.

Because of the danger high sugar foods potentially pose it’s important to have a regulatory body and licensing/education regime to ensure manufacturers and retailers only provide food that has healthy outcomes.

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