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Day of action against asset sales

Written By: - Date published: 3:46 pm, July 14th, 2012 - 125 comments
Categories: activism, privatisation - Tags:

Reports of a good turn-out around the country, although bad weather has obviously kept many more indoors.

Funny, weren’t pro-Government media saying all the fuss would die down after the legislation was passed…


125 comments on “Day of action against asset sales”

  1. alex 1

    Good demonstration on Cuba st today, with some hilarious John Key pantomime street theatre. Also got plenty of signatures beforehand, so worth it to be out in the rain.

  2. Ad 2

    Just felt good to be there. They’re always such a ‘family’ reunion.

  3. Kotahi Tane Huna 3

    Got a few (80-100?) signatures here, and great reaction/support too.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 3.1

      PS tried to edit: no permission…was going to say lots of people had already signed.

  4. Carol 4

    Good on ya all for being there. Hopefully next time I can book some time off work.

    Go the King! Looked good on TV3 just now.

  5. Anne 5

    Yes Carol, I have the same problem. Work on a Sat. It’s frustrating not being able to take part.

  6. RedBlooded 6

    Was great to be there in Auckland. Good mix of people and determined atmosphere. To celebrate Bastille Day nice Guillotine action on ShonKey cutout. Viva le resistance.

  7. Tanz 7

    Key is toast, he is really ignoring the public on this one. Bye Bye in 2014, yay for that. What arrogance!

  8. mike e 8

    Bastille day ended feudalism in France.
    This may be the beginning of the end of modern day feudalism in NZ.
    Where the Neo con man Key stops handing wealth to a lucky few!

  9. Ad 9

    Anyone see any actual Members of Parliament there at the Auckland march beside Twyford and Goff?

    • I saw Dave Clendon, a really underrated Green MP and also Russell Norman.

      I am surprised I did not see the other Auckland Green MPs there and I am disappointed that no other Auckland Labour MPs were there. 

      • Anne 9.1.1

        One or two Auckland Labour MPs are on the Speaker’s latest overseas parliamentary ‘research’ trip weren’t they? 😉

      • Bunji 9.1.2

        I thought Jacinda was there too?

        • mickysavage

          I did not see her but it was a decent sized march.  I should rephrase that I would be disappointed if there were not any other Auckland MPs there.

      • xtasy 9.1.3

        Julie Anne Genter was there and also spoke (before Russel Norman).

      • xtasy 9.1.4

        David Shearer was on an interview on ‘Focus on Politics’ on National Radio tonight. He had a good questionner, but that did not make him sound too convincing and good at all. Again too much “generalism”, distraction by simply criticising the government, but avoiding real questions about what Labour would do instead. I am sorry, but that “honest” and “nice” man is too “fluffy” and unconvincing to me. He should seriously let someone else take over!

        • prism

          One comment from David Shearer was about the criticisms of his performance from the Left. His reasoning was that this fractures the Left, and is almost more than the criticism from the Right. And of course the Left does this apparently everywhere – questions and forms factions that support individual causes.

          But he misses the point. Those who want the NZ Left to resume the ‘sinister’ approach that would excite and enthuse the public don’t want the same old stuff that has had its day, which the country has rejected. If Shearer is to please the critics on the Left he needs to invigorate and enthuse his approach. If he can get excited about his policies that are backed by good advice, the Left will get ahead in the polls.

          • xtasy

            Shearer is clearly not comfortable with the left, as he is happy to be a middle class swing voter himself. Labour happens to be the party he was born into or just happened to be affiliated with, not that he really has thought that much about it, I am afraid. Not good enough, really.

          • Olwyn

            “One comment from David Shearer was about the criticisms of his performance from the Left. His reasoning was that this fractures the Left, and is almost more than the criticism from the Right.”

            He could at least answer to the criticisms, rather than evade and equivocate. If criticisms fracture the left, and he is the leader of a main party that is still broadly described as centre left, then he holds some responsibility for any fracture that occurs. Hence he should be either meeting the concerns of the critics, or explaining why he thinks they cannot be met, not just shrugging them off. We saw much the same thing when rumour had it that Cunliffe got told off for making a heartening speech, and Trotter wrote about it. “Well, I don’t find it particularly helpful to read Chis Trotter,” he said. Not “Trotter is mistaken for reasons A, B and C,” or anything else that would squarely address the concern that had arisen.

            • prism

              Labour at present, David Shearer in particular. Teflon opinions, like the easi-fold storage units sold that hinges and collapses flat after use. What should used is a good old soapbox, firmly built, that lifts him to obvious prominence and allows him to declaim policies that offer some intelligent AND practical AND pragmatic moves going forward etc.

          • Murray Olsen

            Why would Shearer be worried about any fracturing of the left? He’s not part of it.

      • PunditX 9.1.5

        Julie Anne Genter was also there Mickey.

  10. Than 10

    I am surprised to see this posted here. Given how low the numbers were, the left should want as little attention on these marches as possible. Maybe 1000-1500 people in Auckland, hundreds in Christchurch/Wellington? Many waving Green/Tino Rangatiratanga flags?

    National will be breathing a sigh of relief. This is the latest in a string of clear indications that, despite what they say when pollsters insist on a for/against answer, most voters don’t really care that much about asset sales.

    • Tanz 10.1

      They’ll care when their power bills shoot way up though. And the assets once gone, are gone forever. People do care.Ask Winston.

      • Sweetd 10.1.1

        power bills shot up under labour some 70 odd % when power companies were publically owned.

        • xtasy

          That was due to large scale population growth due to migration, expansion of business and households needing urgently more electricity, which the existing networks were unable to deliver, hence additional, gas and coal powered stations had to be built in a very short time, thus necessitating large investments, which had to partly be passed on to the consumers in the way of electricity charges.

          I hope that this will explain to you the reason for this.

          Also did National and ACT show great enthusiasm for the additional migration and growing economic activity at that time, so if you belong to their lot, you should think twice before trying to make this an argument against Labour and other parties that were running affairs then.

          • Paw prick

            , so if you belong to their lot, you should think twice before trying to make this an argument against Labour and other parties that were running affairs then.

            Spoken like a true commie. Democracy at its best!

        • weka

          power bills shot up under labour some 70 odd % when power companies were publically owned.

          What time period was that?

        • Bruce

          I won’t deny that power prices went up under Labour – as we all know, power prices (and other living costs) continue to go up under National.

          * The difference is wages went up under Labour and wages have stagnated under National *

          People’s disposable income (ie. income after living costs are taken away) increases under a Labour government which in turn allows consumers to help NZ businesses. Businesses, consumers, and the economy win.

      • Gosman 10.1.2

        “…the assets once gone, are gone forever.”

        That is just scaremongering nonsense. Stop the blantent lies if you want to be taken seriously.

        • Kotahi Tane Huna

          Yes, look at Argentina for examples of how to deal with situations like this.

          • Gosman

            So you agree it is a lie to argue that once the assets are sold they are gone for good do you?

            • felix

              More accurate to say it’s bloody expensive to get them back.

              In some countries that means literally expensive in blood, but hopefully it never comes to that here.

              • Gosman

                That’s not necessarily true either. Still you and facts aren’t exactly best mates recently are you felix. I’m still waiting to see some sort of evidence that the BNZ was bailed out by the Government in 1945.

    • xtasy 10.2

      @ Than:

      How does it feel to be part of the ignorant mass, putting filling their stomachs, filling the tanks of their cars, sliming to their bosses, dobbing in their neighbours, cutting down others they “compete” with and allowing their own country or adopted country to be sold bit by bit to self serving business and speculator’s interests?

      Maybe you feel so good like that, but to me that is a mentality of a self destroying society, not worth anything anymore, where one goes against his neighbour, work-colleague and business partners.

      By the way, the mainstream media are doing the usual, trivialising protests, presenting wrong numbers and only mentioning the events within 1 to 2 minutes of “news”, where more time is spent on commercial advertising for products and services, catering for the lost majority, that does feel “entertained” while the bloody Titanic is already sinking.

      “Enlightenment”, common sense and intelligence are rare these days, and I am waiting now for the ruling circles to also cut down and throw out the very last bastions of any form of still marginally informative public broadcasting, represented by only Maori TV and Triangle TV.

      Total control, dumbind down, manipulation, selling out, dividing and ruling under such conditions, that is the agenda, and the 3,000 to 4,000 that actually went out on Queen St today, are the spear head of a sizeable part of the NZ public, that have chosen NOT to put up with any more of this bull-crap.

      Have a nice evening in your litlle corner, possibly sitting in front of another screen, indulging in less enlightening and real stuff!

    • Anne 10.3

      Maybe 1000-1500 people in Auckland,

      Bullshit. The police estimate was 4000, and my experience of police estimates is that they are invariably conservative.


      Nah. You watched the Nat. poodle channel TV1 didn’t you Than. They always under-estimate protest matches except when there is a Labour govt., then they over-estimate! Remember the so-called anti-smacking bill wot wasn’t an anti-smacking bill? Thousands were going to march according to TV1. There were 500, but that didn’t stop TV1 giving them wall to wall coverage as though the numbers were closer to 50,000.

      Oh, and don’t you ever read the opinion polls? Consistently around 80% opposition to Asset Sales? Yeah, that’s right, voters don’t really care that much about Asset Sales

      • xtasy 10.3.1

        I tell you that TVNZ is now a “poodle” to National Party and government influences represented on their board or directors or management!

        That is why their news have for months been quite dismissive of anything that opposition politicians added to political debate, while TV3 and their news have actually moved a bit towards the opposite direction. This is really strange, but maybe Joyce did after all not catch on that well with Mediaworks, well, are TV3 not now owned by a bit different a set of investors?

        It is shocking to even have to mention all this, as the mainstream media always has little time for protests, and that has been so for many, many years.

        They are more “commercially” focused and want to “appeal” to sentiments of a more trivial kind, being crime, weather shocks, overseas horror stories, trying to imply: “Well, how good and glad to be in NZ.”

        I have bad news, because apart from exorbitantly expensive mining towns in Western Australia, rents, housing and consumer goods are cheaper in very many places on the globe, including “developed” countries, where people do not get ripped off quite as badly as in little, dear ol Kiwiland.

        • Colonial Viper

          Don’t forget that Labour was very happy for TVNZ to be commercial in nature, and that it left behind any thoughts of true public broadcasting for the public good a very long time ago.

          In other words, “the left” set this bugbear up for themselves.

          • xtasy

            I do not disagree with this comment at all. That is why I insist on Labour to offer and maintain a true “game changer”, away from anything near the “right” or “right of centre”, for sure. And I may add, I did detect that there was a total absence of David Shearer as speaker at the end of the event today, while there were Russel Norman and Julie Ann Genter speaking for the Greens, and only Phil Twyford afterwards addressing the crowd with some words.

            Twyford created a bit of a “scene”, as some students appeared to challenge him on “free speech”. Then a know Labour activist or organiser charged towards them and had to be restrained. I am afraid there is something really bad happening within Labour at present.

            Better sort this out. My opinion is: Shearer is a nice chap, may make a good minister of education or similar, but as leader, he is ambiguous, uncertain and not competent.

            Open the Labour membership base to vote for a future leader, please, we may see something positive after all. At least one must hope.

            • BJ

              Hey xtasy, not sure exactly how you interpreted the ‘scene’ in that way. A man started yelling when Twyford began speaking, and wouldn’t stop when asked to by the AINFS organizers, so some youngish guys (not actually students) challenged him to let Twyford speak; in the name of free speech. I was fairly close and I’m pretty sure the guy who was yelling was actually talking about how Labour is not too different at all from National, rather than defending Twyford.

      • xtasy 10.3.2

        Anne: I totally agree, Radio NZ is probably giving the most correct figures here. That tells us something again. It is a “balanced” broadcaster still in public hands, so neither Nats, Labour or others can run it to their pleasure, and that is how it bloody well should be, same with TVNZ, which though has gone astray too long ago.

      • Than 10.3.3

        Anne, I don’t watch TV news. I get my information primarily from the internet (Stuff, Herald, Scoop, etc.). The 1000-1500 figure I gave was from Stuff (“estimated at well over 1000 people”), and the Herald put the number at 3,000. Could you give a source for that 4,000 police estimate? Because I can’t find it anywhere.

        But even 4,000 is still a pretty low turnout compared to the 50,000 for the anti-mining protest at the start of this year, or the 3,000-8,000 for the last anti-asset sales protest. In his opinion piece for the Herald Matt McCarten claims “growing protests in the streets”, but this march was actually smaller than the first. The protesters are also doing their cause no favours with the vehemence of their anti-National rhetoric. All it does is show this wasn’t a march of everyday kiwis against asset sales, it was a march of the far left against John Key.

        • Pete George

          … it was a march of the far left against John Key.

          But it wasn’t just a cutout of John Key that was guillotined.

        • xtasy

          Than: This just shows how “reliable” and misleading internet based information can be!

          I was there in Auckland, I was at the previous march against asset sales, I was at the anti mining march too. I have some good estimating experience of crowd sizes.

          Having searched various media re any news about the protests last night I found:
          1. The NZ Herald online edition had NO mention of it at all;
          2. the Dominion Post online edition had only a very brief report, which was only about the start of the march;
          3. TVNZ had only about a minute or minute and a half of a “leading” news item at 06 pm, giving no other info but “thousands marched”;
          3. TV3 had a bit more of footage and reporting, but also only barely 2 minutes long, but at least showing a sizeable crown half way down Queen St in Auckland;
          4. Radio Live bizarrely said in late news, “up to a thousand” marched in Central Auckland (??);
          5. National Radio did not mention a number in the read out news, but also stated “thousands”;
          6. apart from this, I found little or no news at all in MSM!

          I am certain that there were at least 3,000, yes rather close to 4,000 on that Auckland march, and most who were there will agree. There were fewer at the end where speeches were held, as some do not bother staying for listening to pollies telling them what they usually tell them.

          Scoop, the NZ Herald and other online media are treating any protests and increasingly social issues in general with neglect and even indifference or ignorance. As they increasingly present “infotainment” rather than quality journalism. Look at some of the young journos, also in broadcasting, who re pre-occupied with “lifestyle” issues, fad type opinions, crime, weather and “entertaining” stuff. Also many are “over groomed” for appearances, like corporate type employees trying all to “fit in” rather than think independently and talk openly. Crap really!

          I do not think the first march against asset sales had about 8,000 participants, and the anti mining march never reached 50 k. It was rather 20 to 30 k who attended that one.

          • Than

            xtasy, forgive me, but I completely ignore “I was there” estimates. For one thing people who participate in a march are not objective. By definition they support the cause being marched for, they want the march to be perceived to be as large as possible. For another, their physical viewpoint (ground level, walking along in the same segment of the march) simply gives them less information than bystanders watching the march go past.

            While I can’t disagree with your criticisms of online media, they are unfortunately the best numbers we have. And based on them this march was at most the same size as the first anti-asset sales march, probably slightly smaller.

            • felix

              Estimating large crowd sizes is actually very difficult from any perspective, whether you’re in the crowd, watching it go by, or observing it from a great height.

              I pretty much just listen to newly created single-issue internet personalities, especially ones with an apparent interest in rubbishing whatever the crowd has gathered for.

            • xtasy

              What an idiotic comment!

              Have you not noticed, that I put to you the more realistic figure of 20 to 30 thousand that marched against mining on conservation land, and that I considered the first asset sale march not having had as many as even you quoted?

              Cyberspace allows anything these days, and if you rely on certain media sites, run as commercial businesses with profit motives, not wanting to offend advertisers, often even being “warm” with the National Party and ACT, then you choose to live in a world of your own and their own imagination.

              I am not member of any party or particular group that organised the march, and as an independent minded individual, I take offence by such criticism of real figures, proved by others, even independent public media like Radio NZ and – forget it not – the Police!

            • xtasy

              A further thing to acknowledge is the fact that there was NO mention of the upcoming march by any of the “main stream media” at all, apart from just a brief mention on a website of 1ZB a day before.

              The largely privately owned and as businesses operated, profit focused media enterprises do virtually never mention anything about upcoming events like the anti asset sale protests, as they simply do not show much interest in such. They are pre-occupied with delivering headline news of more sensationalist a nature, like stories about murder, rape, child abuse, alcohol excesses by the youth, car crashes, freak weather, celebrity gossip and so forth, which are considered more adrenalin generating, “catchy” and thus good “sellers”.

              While this happens, few people get informed, and each time I have been on a protest, I see hundreds or thousands stand on the footpaths, gazing in confusion, wondering what all this is about. So given this is the challenge organisers face, they did fairly well after all.

          • Than

            felix; I agree, estimating march sizes is always difficult. It is effectively impossible for an individual in the march, walking along with no perception of how long the march is or overall density.

            But difficult does not mean it cannot be done, and both the police and media try. It is never going to be particularly accurate (for the previous anti-asset sales march I read numbers between 3,000 and 8,000), but we can get a broad indication. And the broad indication for this march is, it was the same size or smaller than the first anti-asset sales march.

            • Colonial Viper

              The “broad indication” is that Key is going to get his ass handed to him via referendum.

            • felix

              lolz Than. Forgive me, but I completely ignore “newly created single-issue internet personality” estimates.

              Especially when those personalities are so painfully similar to so many others.

              • Than

                felix, good for you.

                Don’t let the fact that I post on a wide range of subjects (on this site, Bowalley Road, Kiwiblog, WhaleOil, and others, all using the same username) get in your way. Just keep the fingers in your ears and I’m sure you’ll be fine.

        • Anne

          I gave a link at 14 July 8:39pm. “Radio NZ gave police estimate at close to 4000 people.”

          All you do is left click on link and hey presto… it will appear. 🙁

          • Anne

            Reply to Than @ 9:53am.

          • xtasy

            Some people choose to walk through life with blinkers on. Others choose to be colourbling or totally blind to the truth. I have some relatives like that, and I think we all know a fair number of such examples.

            This phenomenon will continue to exist, and the person you comment back on appears to be a prime example of such a human specimen.

    • RedBlooded 10.4

      If you put your fingers in your ears, close your eyes and loudly say lalala you will find it easier to block out reality Than.

    • Zetetic 10.5

      the interesting thing about Aotearoa Not For Sale is that they have no pre-existing organisation. They call a bunch of protests but, unlike say Greenpeace and Forest and Bird, they don’t have a database of tens of thousands of members to attempt to mobilise.

      It has to spread by word of mouth, Facebook blogs – that it did and thousands showed up through out New Zealand despite the weather on short (and vague) notice is a testimony to the strength of feeling.

    • Olwyn 10.6

      3 news said 3,000 in Auckland which was also my guess. Someone else heard 4,000 on the media, probably Radio NZ.

    • marsman 10.7

      National Radio News yesterday said Police estimated about 4000 marched in Auckland.

    • Than.
      You are either living in fantasy land or your blue tinted glasses need cleaning.The marches attracted huge crowds every where .It was an example of what happens when the Left co-operates .,A lesson there I think.If the political left gets its act together (and I think they will) Key and his band of neo-Cons are mincemeat,

  11. Than 11

    Thank you RedBlooded. Your suggestion will come in very handy when reading replies on this site.

  12. xtasy 12

    Christchurch had a good turnout despite of not the best weather, but Wellington was a bit disappointing.

    I just heard the news on Radio Live, which must still be Steven Joyces propaganda channel, because they had the cheek to say, that “up to a thousand protesters marched up Queen St”!

    Now that is scandalous, but what do you expect of a privately run talk back radio station having Michael Laws as prime entertainer, broadcasting about a third of airtime on commercial advertising, letting many extreme nutters comment and otherwise cater for largely crime, rape, pillage, sports and low level entertainment style information?

    What has NZ come to, I ask again?

    • xtasy “What has NZ come to, I ask again”
      I would say that yesterdays protest was mostly the hardcore who are prepared to go on fighting. Down on numbers from the last march because many people will have lost hope of stopping the sales at this point. This drop in numbers happened during the marches against the 2001 and 2003 Afghanistan and Iraq invasions, before and after.
      The big difference is that asset sales and the rip, shit, bust plan to recolonise NZ will not go away. The TPPA signals this logic. This means that the opposition to that barbaric future will only grow stronger and draw more and more into activity. The NACTs have no choice but to go for broke and they are breaking down everywhere.
      For example, Operation 8 was a total failure to divide the nation against Maori ‘terror’. The big plans to ‘reform’ education have been temporarily shelved. The huge opposition to asset sales has forced the NACTs to repackage its sales pitch several times and its now coming up against a worsening global crisis and facing legal challenges that could put off any buyers.
      But most important, these setbacks are temporary and part of an ongoing austerity across the board and this is not something that the NACTs can resile from. What makes the current resistance bound to increase and strengthen is the courage and political inventiveness of a growing youth movement who understand that their generation must lead the austerity the fightback against the attacks of the international banksters. When the capitalist system begins to eat its young, its days are numbered. Yesterdays march showed the youth anti-capitalist left in the lead.
      The no-show of Labour’s leaders reflects its unwillingness to be identified as part of a movement lead by anti-capitalists. The Green and Labour MPs who spoke are pro-capitalists and conscious of the need to keep the anti-capitalists in parliament. They are on a losing streak. Because to stop the asset sales the movement has to go beyond referenda and legal challenges to direct action which must come into conflict with parliament.
      Mana is shaping up to lead that resistance and can do when it overcomes its historic division between Tinorangatiratanga and the Pakeha left and unites the majority of the NZ working class. I look forward to the demos and direct actions when I see Mana banners and flags declaiming “Renationalisation without Compensation” behind which the various left currents and single issue campaigns are willing to march.
      The reason that NZ politics is being re-aligned is that Aotearoa/NZs economic role in the Pacific is being permanently realigned under The NACTs as US lackeys. This political realignment will see a huge polarisation between the NACT rightwing and a growing left around Mana, a left labour split, and a Green split along class lines that unites the left fragments reminiscent of Syriza in Greece. Its agenda will be to defeat the right drift towards NZ as a locked down US neocolony and fight for Aotearoa/NZ as sovereign, republic and socialist. That would be a good start.

  13. xtasy 13

    Had enough of debate for tonight:

    Musica Popular do Brasil:




    enjoy one or the other.

    Boa Noite

  14. Again everyone has it all wrong. Those were the good old days, we are now well and truly on the down side of the global peak in energy invested on energy returned, from now on life is going to get worse for all of us. The rich are going to be less comfortable when all the global paper wealth burns to nothing, and might becomes right. We are on a non stop ride to reality.
    So once the av gas runs out and flying just stops every airport will just be a waste land covered in rotting planes. And once all the coal power dependent factories in China stop manufacturing all the wingdings our electricity grid needs, and I’m including all the end products we use electricity to run. Not only are we at peak energy we are fast reaching peak washing machine and flat screen TV, though just like the Easter Islanders with their 3/4 carved Moi in their quarry, ‘we’ will still be manufacturing crap as the lights are going out. We are not quite at peak stupid yet, though 1.4 million Kiwi Savers would be hard to beat. Installing heat pumps, and thinking ‘assets are worth shit are just symptoms of an uninformed society, sadly being stupid is no excuse, but most people will go out of their way to remain uninformed.
    Political blogs being another example. sorry just winding you up

    • xtasy 15.1

      I am afraid until that happens, there are still a few decades left, where they can destroy the last remnants of life on the planet. Really, and forgive me all those humane thinking readers, the most agressive, hostile and destructive being on this planet now is the human being.

      We will follow the exploitative conduct to the very end, I am afraid. No stone, soil and whatever unturned, nothing sacred, all open to exploitation, just to get the oil, coal, gas, iron, aluminium, platinum, rare earth minerals, and whatsoever, out of the ground and sea, that is what will happen. It will be done, to keep the totally brainwashed, manipulated, conditoned, manicured, air conditioned, chemically constructed and otherwise artificially wrapped “humans” (?) able to continue to consume til they die. Lipstick, finger nail polish, wrappers, tissues, one way this and that, pills, clothing, fast food, other food, decorations, silly presents, but of course also really essential goods and services, that will continue to be produced, sold and marketed.

      Fuck the whales, dolphins, sharks, snappers, tuna, the wild animals on grounds, the soil, the earth, the air, and the whole damned environment, it is only to be used to get those resources and products made.

      Hardly anybody sees, hears and feels those environments anyway, so they are totally disconnected, not aware, do not give a damn and only see all the “nature” as a source for exploitation for their benefit.

      That is what goes on now, will get worse, and it will mean the human species going to go that far, that it will cut the umbilical cord, to nature, where we all come from. It is all screwed, fucked and the rest. Consider cyanide or other emergency measures, because once the Arabian Gulf gets into turmoil and cut off, nothing will go anywhere anymore. That is the reality dumb people do NOT get.

    • weka 15.2

      Come on Robert, you can do better than that. We can live without flatscreen TVs, and we can live without washing machines. We can even learn how to live without electricity on tap. We can live without kiwisaver when that falls over. We can’t live without water. We can’t live without land that is capable of growing food. Resistance to asset sales is about sovereignty.

  15. Bruce 16

    John Key is pushing the message: All groups that oppose asset sales are wasting their time. He is scared and trying to increase apathy.

    • Murray Olsen 16.1

      And sending his puppets to comment on blogs like this, by the looks of things. Funny how they appear in groups.

  16. Carol 17

    Well, at the moment, NZ Herald is reporting on first time protesters who were moved to go to yesterday’s protest – and estimates the crowd in Auckland as 3000:


    Botes, a teacher and mum of two, had never been in a protest before. But she felt so strongly about the Government’s plans that she left her Glen Innes home to march up Queen St with 2-year-old Luca Namoa.
    Many people waved the flags of political parties and unions in Auckland yesterday but Botes attended on her own.

    “This is the first protest I’ve ever been to. I’m here for all New Zealanders.”

    She wanted to protect the country from the Government’s “silly and short-sighted” decision and was pleased she had made the effort. “It’s pretty cool. I feel like I’m making a difference, instead of just staying home.”

    Auckland businessman Robert Daggar was also at his first protest. The 61-year-old said state-owned assets must be kept “for the good of the people, not sold for profit. This ideology around asset sales is crippling the world.”

    Wearing a hat with the message “no asset sales”, 91-year-old Margaret Jones said she was compelled to join the walk because she was angry at the Government. “These assets belong to me just like they do to everyone else.”

    Protesters vented their anger when the march reached the Town Hall.

    Dummies of John Key, Deputy Prime Minister Bill English and ministers Paula Bennett and Judith Collins were beheaded by a makeshift guillotine to cries of “off, off, off” from the crowd.

    Pity the author didn’t make the connection with the last description and Bastille Day.

    • “This is the first protest I’ve ever been to. I’m here for all New Zealanders.”

      Good on her for attending and feeling motivated enough, but she was there for herself, not for “all New Zealanders.”

      “It’s pretty cool. I feel like I’m making a difference, instead of just staying home.”

      If she felt good about “making a difference” then yeah, cool. But I wonder whether the time and energy spent on “we must do something” could find a better goal, one that was achievable and could make a significant difference.

      The stark reality is that MOM share floats, or not, will make little difference overall. Anti asset sales has been sold to political consumerists who may think they’re momentarily loving it but smoothing a few wrinkles won’t turn the age old clock back.

      The main motivation for anti asset sales seems to have been little more than a consolation campaign for those who lost the last election.

      Imagine if all the effort put into being anti was instead focussed on pro positive initiatives, like job generation.

      If an enthusiasm for making our country better could be generated then people power may be much better harnessed. At the moment it seems like it’s being sold down the river by politicians lacking positive ideas.

      • Murray Olsen 17.1.1

        Politicians lacking positive ideas – your weird hair boss won’t like that description of him, Pete.

      • xtasy 17.1.2

        “The stark reality is that MOM share floats, or not, will make little difference overall.”

        If it was not so serious an issue, I could laugh at your comments.

        So losing hundreds of millions in revenue to private shareholders opting to use their dividends rather for their personal gratification and spending choices makes a “little difference” t o the government?

        Losing 49 per cent ownership in assets owned by those enterprises will make “little difference”?

        You surely cannot have much understanding of accounting and economics. All it will do is create an even greater hole in the government accounts, which will only lead to yet more asset sales in future, as further “last resort” measures to fill opening gaps.

        Come on, the readers of comment s here do have a bit more intelligence than you are prepared to acknowledge. By the way, what do Key, English or Farrar pay you for writing such nonsense in this blog site?

  17. Nick 18

    PG you are again obfuscating and sounding triumphalist about “winning” the last election. You are really a National apologistand if you are anything like Dunne you will soon jump ship.

    • No, wrong assumptions.We need to look ahead, not back. Putting to rest a futile folly and focus on leadership of the future.

      Fighting the next election by campaigning early on last years election issues shows how visionless and bankrupt the left are. They even have to use tax payers money to get signitures for their referendum.

      Each time the news show the assemblage using the same old worn banners with the same faces it gets more embarrassing.

      A lot of energy going nowhere. They need to pick their battles more carefully or maybe this is all they have got.


      Those stuck in a campaign rut won’t like being told, but it needs to be said.

  18. I sEe ReD pEoPlE 19

    Wa Wa… I wonder how many on these marches are net tax payers. I’m guessing the number is significantly lower than the national rate. How they can claim that these are “their” assets is beyond me. Freeloaders.

    • Carol 19.1

      You’re sounding a .little desperate, there, rEDheRring. Any stats to support your fantasy? e.g. polls showing the percentage of Kiwis opposed to assset sales?

      • OneTrack 19.1.1

        Probably less than the 51% votes given to National and their coalition partners in the recent General Election?

        • Carol

          Wrong. Just because people voted for those parties doesn’t mean they all support asset sales (Dunne didn’t make it clear to voters where he stood, Maori Party was opposed), and even polls which usually favour the right wing parties show over 50% against asset sales:

          Like Stuff’s online poll of June this year:


          Does the Government have a mandate for partial asset sales?
          Yes – they campaigned on it and won the election
          7134 votes, 47.1%
          No – the law only passed by one vote
          8010 votes, 52.9%

          And the author reporting on this one in April 2012 is ever hopeful for National:


          Most people still oppose state asset sales but opinion might be swinging in the Government’s favour, a new poll shows.

          It is going to sell 49 per cent of shares in four state-owned power companies, starting around August.

          The One News Colmar Brunton poll shows 61 per cent of about 1000 voters questioned oppose asset sales, 30 per cent support them and 9 per cent don’t know.

          While this article of July this year says that the asset sales policy is turning away potential National voters:


          NATIONAL’S asset sales plan is turning away both loyal and swing voters – and not gaining it any new support.

          About half of those who voted National in the last general election say the Government’s handling of asset sales has made them consider changing their vote, according to a NewsWire poll of 51 people on the streets of Wellington.

          Anecdotal evidence indicates some people voted for National in the 2011 election for other reasons, and didn’t believe that National would go ahead with their asset sales proposals.

          Anyway, it looks like at least 50% of voters are against the asset sales – most of whom are ordinary tax payers.

          • Pete George

            Dunne didn’t make it clear to voters where he stood

            That’s a repeated claim that’s long been debunked. People who didn’t listen to Dunne during the campaign are now hissy he won’t jump at their command.

            The Green campaign concentrated (successfully) on three things but omitted making it clear they would employ people to gather petition signatures.

            The Labour campaigned concentrated (unsuccessfully) on one anti policy but didn’t make clear:
            a) they would change leader just after the election
            b) they would continue campaigning unsuccessfully on the same thing for another year or two

            • felix

              That’s right Pete, when Dunne speaks we have to listen very precisely to the exact words, lawyer style, paying no attention to the context or subtext.

              Except for those times when he said he wouldn’t let National sell water. In those cases we’re all supposed to infer precisely which bits of water he meant without any specifics given, and pay no attention to his literal words at all.

              It’s highly inconsistent, yes, but we forgive him this because he’s been around so very long and achieved so very much (once chaired a group to talk about reports I think) and it’s impossible to imagine how the country would function without his valuable input.

              • higherstandard

                Not that I enjoy defending any politician let alone Dunne but he is actually pretty explicit on this issue.

                “…… but in the event National putst up its mixed ownership model for the electricity companies and Air New Zealand we would be prepared to support that, provided the maximum was 49%, with a cap of 15% on any indivudual’s holdings. We would never support the sale of Kiwibank, Radio New Zealand or control of water assets.”

                • felix

                  Sorry I’m a little hard of hearing. Can you repeat the last four words?

                  • higherstandard

                    No, you’re a little hard of comprehension and too immersed in your troll attack of PG which is cute but becoming a bit tedious.

                    • felix

                      With all due respect I think you’ve missed it hs.

                      We’ve been told over and over that we can only take Dunne’s words on the subject strictly at face value, strictly literally, and with no regard for the context or presentation.

                      Furry muff, but it applies here too then.

                      No selling control of water assets. Black and white mate.

                    • Kotahi Tane Huna

                      “troll attack”?

                      1. PG lists “United Future” as his employer. I’m glad someone can be bothered nailing and emphasising every single one of his attempted deceits. Has no-one explained to you that you can’t trust politicians?

                      2. What’s “hard of comprehension” in pointing out that a promise not to sell “control of water assets” has been broken?

            • xtasy

              Pete George:

              Peter Dunne has as many priciples – if not less – as a street prostitute waiting for a client offering the most dosh for a “deal” of sorts.

              Re the Greens: What relevance has their recent decision to employ two persons collecting signatures to a petition against asset sales full time to their election campaign? NONE, really, as it is up to the Greens or any other party to choose how to best spend the money they as party and their MPs are entitled to.

              Re Labour: The problem Labour had was to sufficiently convince traditional and prospective voters that they had truly “changed’ from the also somewhat “laizzez faire” economics following party they had become since the late 1980s.

              Having Goff as leader, who was and is one of the more “right wing” Labour MPs, in the past himself involved in supporting some asset sales, was not successful. Changing leaders after the election was a natural and logical step to take, given Goff did not deliver the result they had hoped for. Regrettably Shearer is not the most suited future leader, so he will only serve as temporary leader.

              You try to deliver stuff as arguments for your position, which are really quite irrelevant and even wrong.

            • McFlock

              Funnily enough, if a lot of people feell surprised by his commitment to asset sales, then his position was unclear to them – probably due to conflicting messages about keeping national in check, etc.
              Surprising that a politician who keeps getting elected to his rotten borough is such a crap communicator. A cynic would say that it’s why he keeps getting elected.

            • rosy

              That’s a repeated claim that’s long been debunked. People who didn’t listen to Dunne during the campaign are now hissy he won’t jump at their command.

              Dunno about that Pete, If I remember rightly back in the day when you refused to say who you’d vote for you were arguing that Dunne was not ‘for’ asset sales. If you, as a UF candidate couldn’t work it out at that stage then I son’t know why you’ve spent so long arguing that others less involved in politics should have been able to.

              See in particular, this from Nov 2011:

              Asset sales are not United Future policy. If partial sales are a part of coalition negotiations UF have bottom lines. Full asset sales will not be supported (non are proposed anyway). Apart from that it depends on priorities in negotiations, and which parties are involved in those negotiations.

              Obviously it’s possible UnitedFuture may agree to partial sales but they are not party policy.

              Your now arguing that partial asset sales were always UF policy. Can we end this now?

      • TightyRighty 19.1.2

        There was a great one last october. after months of advertising against asset sales being foisted on the politically engaged sector of the electorate and six weeks of it being foisted on the entire electorate, the electorate spoke in favour of asset sales.

    • Pillock.  I saw a number of well heeled people on the march.

      • Bunji 19.2.1

        But of course the main point is that we live in a democracy, not a plutocracy, and the voices of the poor still count, not just the voices of those who can work the system (fairly or otherwise) for financial gain…

        We’re all human, not just the wealthy.

      • OneTrack 19.2.2

        Which number, Mickey? Two? And one of them was you?

        • mickysavage

          Let’s see, an idiot who was not on the march makes a really stupid statement.  I disagree with him because:

          1.  I was on the march.
          2.  I knew quite a few people who were also on the march and their backgrounds.

          You, who was also not on the march, and who obviously do not know who was on the march let alone what their backgrounds are, back him up.

          Tell me, who is the idiot here? 

    • Colonial Viper 19.3

      Wa Wa… I wonder how many on these marches are net tax payers. I’m guessing the number is significantly lower than the national rate. How they can claim that these are “their” assets is beyond me. Freeloaders.

      hey prick, guess how much your “net tax paying” mates would be making a month without the rest of society.

      Oh that’s right, zero. Because many of the top 0.1% are the true unproductive parasites of society.

      • Murray Olsen 19.3.1

        The sad thing is that they’re probably not even his mates. He’ll be some fuckwit that couldn’t get an education but got a slightly larger TV than his neighbours. The idiot will be licking the boot that smashes his face.

  19. Observer AKL 20

    Aotearoa is Not for Sale

    The diverse group of people that are heading the thrust against Asset Sales do not appear to be poor. They seem to be the well educated middle class. Their age grouping looks predominantly between 30 and 45yrs of age.

    The quality of their short speeches, both in content and use of words, is amazing when compared to that of members of Parliament.

    They do not agree with wealthy Mr Key that Assets which belong to New Zealanders should be sold to the already very wealthy, and given to overseas sovereign nations.

    I saw only one small placard with the word Labour on it yesterday – in Queen St. This in keeping with the fact that the Labour Party has settled for an existence which resembles a shadow.

    Unlike Mr Key, the leaders of “Aotearoa is Not for Sale” are not smug or frivolous or cynical. Neither do they engage in sensationalism or spin. They don’t fudge their figures like Mr English. Nor do they offer blatant share bonus bribes in the manner of Key – “buy one get one free”.

    It may take them years to get back the Assets from the wealthy friends of Mr Key, but I sense an educated determination in this middle class movement to achieve their goals. I further think they have learned enough from the legal (but disgustingly immoral) practices of corrupt bankers/traders to drive a very hard bargain against the investors.

    They have 160,000 supporters now and the number is rising daily.

  20. MrV 21

    I don’t care too much for this protest, but I will say this much.

    What does it say about NZ in general when we can’t agree on the size of a protest?
    NZ becoming more truly pathetic everyday.

    What was last months pathetic distraction, oh thats right whether or not a casino can get 400 extra pokies.

  21. Treetop 22

    I attended the march in my area. I would have liked to have written on a placard “Egocentric PM”

  22. Observer AKL 23

    Good on you – Treetop

    The very wealthy don’t care much about anything. Just themselves. That’s why they are so unbelievably tiresome.

    Hey, but Treetop they will turn to dust just as truly as the rest of us. Having led their useless, sour and selfish lives. Their sad kids will claw at their corpse for their share of the stagnant wealth.

    Have you seen them bleat and whinge on this site here? They always at it. Same old funless shells.

    • Treetop 23.1

      I just wonder how long the troll supporters are intending to hold onto any energy asset shares?

  23. TighyRighty 24

    You call that a fuss? Same old faces, same old bullshit. Hardly a day of action. Ponsonby rd is busier than that.

    • McFlock 24.1

      indeed – nothing to see here, move along, nactional can’t be challenged, buy a big tv…

  24. Cat Pause 25

    nom nom nom

  25. Bruce 26

    I have filled a page with relatives’ signatures and sent it off. I have another untapped resource of friends and associates to fill another referendum page at least. Screw this government and its cheesy, cynical wishlist. Screw low wages/salaries. Screw educating future Australians.

  26. Re pro-Government media
    Nothing in the Com Post this morning

  27. Tiger Mountain 28

    The troll roll always increases here when there is some public action giving capital and its flabby toupee wearing rep ShonKey, a bit of a serve. The right tends to fill its pants at the mere thought of citizens behaving collectively rather than the individualists they have been trained to be.

    Suck it up Gozzie, “asset steals” is a slow burner issue but it is becoming increasingly apparent who will be charcoal in the end.

    Dave Brown above identifies a trend, young people in numbers are adopting a class analysis and activism, I smile every time I see a young person in a Mana T-shirt.

    • TightyRighty 28.1

      Some public action. Not a very apt description. A few die hards and activists with misty eyed visions of the glory days when protests where sticking it to the man hardly constitutes public.

      • Tiger Mountain 28.1.1

        Look I rest my case TR, the number of right wing whingers on this thread is suitable evidence, complete with the same old arguments about numbers and what it all means.

        Watch this space because the “man” is going to get a good old “sticking to” during the next few months over Asset Steals.

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