Dogwhistlin’

Written By: - Date published: 1:30 pm, May 7th, 2009 - 53 comments
Categories: Media, racism - Tags:

Interesting article in the Herald today. It concentrates on a conversation between Melissa Lee and an old racist pharmacist from Mt Albert who won’t vote for her because she’s Asian.
It turns out that the Herald has interviewed many reasonable people (most of whom supported Shearer) for this piece. So why spend half the article on what some daft old bugger has to say? It’s clearly a dogwhistle “if you don’t vote Melissa Lee, you’re a racist too”
David Farrar picks it up, only to prove you can break a dogwhistle if you blow too hard.
The irony is that it is Lee engaging in racial stereotyping. Lee thinks that because “twenty-four per cent of the electorate is Asian” she will get their votes. Not only is that premised on people voting on ethnic lines it assumes all Asians are alike.
Ultimately, the worst thing about this attempt to make race an issue is it puts the candidates’ identity above the issues and policies. In fact, I’m struggling to recall an article from the mainstream media on Mt Albert that focuses the issues, rather than the parliamentary politicking or the candidates’ personal qualities.

53 comments on “Dogwhistlin’ ”

  1. bilbo 1

    “In fact, I’m struggling to recall an article from the mainstream media on Mt Albert that focuses the issues, rather than the parliamentary politicking or the candidates’ personal qualities.”

    Sounds a bit like The Standard.

  2. The comments to Farrar’s posting do not look so much the result of a dog whistle but more the result of someone putting a whole heap of LSD into their posters’ water supply.

    Ryan Sproull’s comments were more grounded in reality than most of them and deserves repeating for everyone’s afternoon’s entertainment. He said

    “Western medicines are actually only really effective for red-blooded people. The Asian’s green blood is mostly impervious to such things. However, the Asian has an advantage when the USS Enterprise encounters psychoactive plant toxins on alien planets in star-clustered reaches.”

    Kiwiblog can be a scary place …

  3. Imposter JJW 3

    If the good people of Mt Alberto vote for me i will table a bill that will make it compulsory for websites such as this to pay tribute to funk soul musicians and they drugs that made them famous rather than politics.

    Lets face it politics sucks anyway.

  4. r0b 4

    My “favourite” quote from that dreck of an article? Of David Shearer – “despite a reputation as a grey United Nations bureaucrat”. Mmmm. Uh huh. A reputation straight out of the National Party spin machine and reprinted verbatim by the loyal Herald. Classy.

  5. gingercrush 5

    The irony is that it is Lee engaging in racial stereotyping. Lee thinks that because “twenty-four per cent of the electorate is Asian’ she will get their votes. Not only is that premised on people voting on ethnic lines it assumes all Asians are alike.

    That comment strikes me immediately because the article doesn’t even say that. Lee says, “”Twenty-four per cent of the electorate is Asian, 40 per cent were born overseas. I think I can empathise with them”. That is vastly different to what you are implying.

    Though lets put what you say in perspective. Do Maori not vote along their ethnic lines or Pacific Islanders? How many Pacific Islanders vote National compared to Labour? Not many. How many Maori vote National? Not Many. Of course people vote on ethnic lines. There isn’t much data available to see how asians vote. The only big Asian electorate is Botany. That overwhelmingly voted National. But other times, Asian strongholds have voted for Labour. I suggest much as in the United States like Hispanics they’re very swing voters. Though I think overtime they will settle. For National to prosper they need to garner large numbers of Asian voters because they’re a growing population.

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 5.1

      Pointing out that 24% of the electorate is Asian is just dumb. Remember India, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and half of Turkey are classified as Asian. It could be argued that the non selection of Ravi will hurt with Asian voters.I suspect the comment was only a throw away line as part of a longer conversation, but politicians do need be more careful when making blythe generalisations. This goes with her “I know NZ better than him comment”

  6. My “favourite’ quote from that dreck of an article? Of David Shearer – “despite a reputation as a grey United Nations bureaucrat’. Mmmm. Uh huh. A reputation straight out of the National Party spin machine . . .

    Don’t you mean the Green Party spin machine?

    • Eddie 6.1

      A cheeky person might ask if there’s a difference these days under Russel Norman.

    • r0b 6.2

      I still hope that the Greens will head back towards the light, so I’m prepared to cut them some slack!

  7. SPC 7

    FFS everyone knows that Labour under Goff will run as a continuance of National lite after Key won power by running as Labour lite.

    If Greens, as the only remaining left wing party, cannot call them the tweedle dee tweddle dum men of the grey/gray centre – because others claiming to be of the left (but wanting a united front behind one of the grey/gray parties Labour) don’t approve of calling it like it is, it does not speak to the Greens but …

    • r0b 7.1

      FFS everyone knows that Labour under Goff will run as a continuance of National lite

      FFS does everybody know that? I certainly don’t. Why so quick to judge Goff on your preconceptions? Why not wait for his actions?

      Oh well – by all means spit the dummy and wallow in a good old fashioned leftie civil war, if you really think it will help. But I used to think the Greens were better than that.

      • SPC 7.1.1

        r0b

        There once was a time when the left came to the Greens (earlier the Alliance) because they did not want to be confined to supporting a centrist path.

        Now if the Greens choose to say that a centrist path is one chosen by grey/gray men they call this lack of solidarity.

        Surely the choice of Goff spoke to choosing to fight Key’s Labour lite with Goff’s National lite? Simply put, if Key moves to the centre-right being in the centre to replace the government. It is at one level a restraint on National moving to the centre-right, that if they do they will lose.

        But the whole reason why the left moved to Alliance and then Greens is that they wanted more than restraining National from being able to move to the right by running a centrist Labour party.

        But hey, if the non environment left can put up with no progress on the environment through National’s term for sake of a centrist Labour government replacing National should they move away from the centre – and thats the extent of their political ambition – what sort of left is it, Vichy left?

        • r0b 7.1.1.1

          Got to go to the dentist SPC, so later. But Labour is the left that people vote for, and the left that actually gets stuff done. “Vichy left” is in such poor taste that I whap you with the Godwin stick. Bye for now…

        • r0b 7.1.1.2

          Surely the choice of Goff spoke to choosing to fight Key’s Labour lite with Goff’s National lite?

          Why? On what recent evidence do you make such a claim? Surely the choice of Goff spoke to choosing the most experienced and most appropriate candidate to pick up where Helen Clark left off? Why are you Greens so intent on demonising Goff – before he’s even done anything?

          But hey, if the non environment left can put up with no progress on the environment through National’s term

          I hope that you do get progress on environmental issues SPC, but I can’t say I’m holding my breath. I’m not even sure that you can stop things from going backwards. How are you doing on stopping the gutting of the RMA?

          Here’s where I’m from. I don’t much care about parties, I care about the causes and issues of the left. I happen to be a member of the Labour Party because they are much better organised than the Greens in my electorate, and I don’t like wasting my time. But I have voted for, contributed to, and worked for the Greens (because its all about causes and issues, not parties). I’ve been around long enough to know that leftie civil wars are inevitable – because we care about things passionately. I’ve also been around long enough to know that a certain amount of civil war can be healthy, but that if they get out of control they’re very, very destructive.

          There once was a time when the left came to the Greens (earlier the Alliance)

          Yes, and before them the Values party. Values is gone. Alliance is gone. What conclusions do you draw about the viability of a hard left party in NZ politics? As above – Labour is the left that people will vote for. The left that gets stuff done. The left that has done a huge amount of good for NZ. Of course Labour is far from perfect, but to my mind it is better to have imperfect progress than none at all.

          The Greens have lasted well as a hard left party so far because of the mana of Rod (whom I knew in Trade Aid long ago) and Jeanette, and because they have a very clear and attractive environmental brand. My genuine fear with respect to the current Green strategy is not that it will take votes from Labour – personally I don’t much care who on the left gets the votes – my fear is that the Greens will so damage themselves in the eyes of some of their core supporters that they will slip below the 5% threshold. That would be a tragedy.

          Please give some thought, next time you feel like painting Labour as the “Vichy left”, to the fact that we are not in truth your enemies, that we are not all fools or misguided, that some of us have good reasons for doing what we do, that there are very real differences between National and Labour, and that those differences matter to the environment and to the lives of many many New Zealanders.

          We now return you to your regularly scheduled civil war. Sigh.

          • SPC 7.1.1.2.1

            r0b

            Funny thing is – it was the Greens who were attacked by others on the left for remaining true to their environment policy position – of trying to influence the mainstream parties and work with them to get results. The attacks on the Greens for this were not initiated by them.

            Were the slights on this thread made at the expense of the Greens made by them – responding to them is not launching anything.

            The Green Party exists as a party of environment principle and its existence (Values was operating in a FPP environment) and reliability as a left wing partner to Labour is premised on this. Expecting them to sell out on environment policy (accept a delay on insulating homes and making home heating affordable) because of solidarity on the left would be to betray its declared committment.

            If a party of the left cannot campaign for votes on the basis that another party is centrist (when it is) – without others on the left complaining about the lack of solidarity … one wonders how far some “on the left” can go out of loyalty to the “Third Way”.

            There was once a left wing nation, but because some saw the left as too weak to survive the threat of the right they became (Vichy) centrists. But it was only those true to the resistance of the left who were the heroes who built Kiwibank.

            The Greens party’s credibility is built around its environment cause and it is a left wing party – do not ask it to sell out for the convenience of a centrist party, however preferable its government might be to a full blown right wing regime. The Green Party is the only party committed to a coalition with Labour alone – for it to be slighted by those on the left for being true to its environment policy committment is a travesty.

    • Pascal's bookie 7.2

      heh, my old dad reckons that:

      Those that reckon that everyone knows, reckon everyone knows what they reckon.

    • Maynard J 7.3

      Your logic is…fucked.

      National ran as Labour lite and won. If Labour win, it will be by being National lite, you say. National lite is obviously a left version of National v1.0, which is a left version of National (remembering that ‘National’ was originally Labour lite).

      So Labour lite being National lite, when National lite dervied itself from Labour, means Labour will be…Labour. A left-wing party.

      Labour were a fair bit more amicable to the Greens than National. All you get now are regulations on pills for Men Issues, quack medicine and ‘the bird’ over the ETS. The wrong kind of bird.

      Ah well, at least the Greens weren’t stupid enough to tie a slogan to the MoU. Imagine the grief I could give them if the agreement was touted as “Environment-enhancing” or “Frog-enhancing”.

      • SPC 7.3.1

        Maynard J

        No. All centrist alternatives in opposition simply offer little substantive change in policy – which Key offered in 2008. Thus Goff offers in 2011 what Key did in 2008. Little change in policy settings made by the former government. Goff’s campaign will likely be based on what Key might do (move to the right) if given a second term (as some promises made in 2008 were of a one term duration) and thus offer the continuance of the centrist course option.

      • mickysavage 7.3.2

        National ran pretending to be Labour lite but recent events show that they are really adherents to Ruthenasia 2.0

        Labour just needs to run as itself.

  8. “The irony is that it is Lee engaging in racial stereotyping. Lee thinks that because “twenty-four per cent of the electorate is Asian’ she will get their votes.”

    That is shameless Eddie. Lee said:

    “Twenty-four per cent of the electorate is Asian, 40 per cent were born overseas. I think I can empathise with them.”

    What part of this is untrue? Melissa Lee said she could empathise with migrants and you accuse her of racial stereotyping and ignorance. Talk about spin.

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 8.1

      I was born in Australia, does that make me qualified to empathise with other foreign born people? if she thinks that people will vote based on where you were born she is severely underestimating the voters’ intelligence.

      • bluerag 8.1.1

        I happen to think people who have been through the process of moving to a new country have a shared experience. I also think someone who migrated to New Zealand should, all other factors being equal, be better placed to empathise with other migrants than someone who was not.

        • Zaphod Beeblebrox 8.1.1.1

          The problem is that we aren’t all equal. Migrating to NZ is an unique experience, but I believe she is overplaying her hand on this one. If she can show how her experience allows her and her party to help newcomers and makes her more qualified for Mt Albert that would be great. Making blanket generalisations about asians or knowing NZ, or being tough on crime (a direct pitch to insecurity minorities feel)in my mind, does not cut the mustard. Her media experience has taught her to be short and straight to the point but she needs to back it up with some policy. To date she hasn’t done that-lets see if she can do that.

  9. Tim Ellis 9

    What Eddie said:

    “The irony is that it is Lee engaging in racial stereotyping. Lee thinks that because “twenty-four per cent of the electorate is Asian’ she will get their votes. Not only is that premised on people voting on ethnic lines it assumes all Asians are alike.”

    What Lee actually said:

    “Twenty-four per cent of the electorate is Asian, 40 per cent were born overseas. I think I can empathise with them.”

    I know you’re a staunch Labour Party supporter Eddie, but that is simply shabby. I realise that you might be annoyed that Shearer has got little good press, and Lee has been getting plenty of good coverage, but you really don’t have to treat all your readers as idiots.

    Lee was the producer and presenter of Asia Down Under for many years. It speaks for itself that she knows very well that not all Asians vote or think the same.

    • bluerag 9.1

      I made the same point above. Note how Eddie simply ignores getting called out for her lying?

      • Maynard J 9.1.1

        Do you have a daughter, wife or mother called ‘Eddie’?

        Are you a female called ‘Eddie’?

        Or are you being “funny”?

        • bilbo 9.1.1.1

          eddie as in eddie and Patsy …..abfab

          • Maynard J 9.1.1.1.1

            Girl = eddy

            Guy = eddie

            bluerag = not thinking of abfab.

            “Bubbles, what is it you do here?”

            “Get paid…”

  10. Irascible 10

    Lee & NACT will be taking advice from the Wong-Wang campaign.
    Botany in 2008 was an electorate where the NACT parties acted in concert. Wang’s advertising was designed to boost Wong while her protestations were designed to re-enforce the idea that unless the Chinese/Korean/Indian block voted for her they would be ignored by the European blocs.
    As well NACT appealed to the inherent economic conservatism of the Asian bloc with a campaign that stressed the hard work individualistic work ethic of the Asians over the inherent laziness of the Europeans in the electorate.
    Labour workers came across many Asians who expressed this argument or made statements along the lines that until NZ made the people work by cutting away social support programmes – benefits etc – and made the general electorate aware that they should be more self reliant like we (Asians) are no one would make a profit.
    The sole met the candidates meeting in Botany, held in the Methodist Church Hall, in 2008 took written questions from the audience about the candidates’ policies. There wre NO questions about social policies. Every question was on how the Parties would support business or the individual by removing tax, removing policies that spent money on welfare issues, that would encourage “self reliance” and would smack down hard on crime – especially crime that affected Asians.
    This was the Wong-Wang sub-surface campaign pitched directly to that constituency within Botany.
    NACT will run a similar race based campaign in Mt Albert.
    Because the campaign is an insidious under the surface one it is very difficult to oppose it if you represent a more socially responsible party.

    • Pascal's bookie 10.1

      Interesting. It will be a lot harder to stay under the radar in a by-election though methinks…

  11. I realise that you might be annoyed that Shearer has got little good press . . .

    See, here’s the thing – Shearer has gotten REALLY good press, from the Herald no less.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10570449

    I’d argue that this article is far more complimentary towards Shearer than Simon Collins’ is about Lee – but if you’re a party cheerleader you don’t notice such things. Pro-Labour propaganda is merely ‘fair and balanced’ reporting.

    • Eddie 11.1

      Danyl. I would agree that the bit that talks about voters’ views of Shearer is pretty good for him but it’s the choice to focus the article on the racist that’s unsettling.

      Personally I would prefer if the article was reporting the candidates’ views on issues that matter to the people fo Mt Albert, rather than the reactions of people to meeting them.

      • bluerag 11.1.1

        Yeah, who cares what voters think of the candidates?

      • Tim Ellis 11.1.2

        Maybe, Eddie, if the candidates started talking about the issues that matter to the people of Mt Albert, rather than trying to invent the issues and frame the issues for the campaign, then voters might talk more about them. Labour is determined to turn the supercity and waterview into the issues of the campaign. I suspect that the apathetic response of Mt Albert voters to that just shows that they would rather talk about the real issues of local crime, and the economy. It also shows that Labour just isn’t in touch with voters issues.

        • Zaphod Beeblebrox 11.1.2.1

          I assume the parties have done their focus groups.

        • Maynard J 11.1.2.2

          What apathetic response, Tim? What are the ‘real’ issues and what research are you basing this factual claim on?

          Please give me a link or two. I’d love to read what you have obviously read, something like a poll that gives numbers of Mt Albert voters’ most important issue. It must have been taken in the last, well the candidates have only been selected for a week now, so it must be a poll that came out yesterday or today.

          Which poll told you that the voters of Mt Albert don’t care about the supercity and the possibility of a road bulldozed through Mt Albert, and that they care much more about crime and the economy, and think that those are the defining issues of the byelection?

          I am staggered that this poll has not appreared in the media yet, Tim, your sources must be great. I will understand if you say that it is currently embargoed information.

          • gobsmacked 11.1.2.2.1

            Labour is determined to turn the supercity and waterview into the issues of the campaign.

            Whereas here in the cafes and shops of Auckland, people just want to talk about the one thing they really care about.

            I went for a haircut today.

            “So, the usual trim, is it? And how’ve you been?”

            “Yeah, not bad, shame the weather’s gone bad.”

            “Weather? Who cares? Does that Labour bloke support the possible use of private forces in UN peacekeeping or not? My wife was on at me about it all night. My kids are divided, but my neighbour’s anti. Now, the way I see it …”

        • r0b 11.1.2.3

          Labour is determined to turn the supercity and waterview into the issues of the campaign. I suspect that the apathetic response of Mt Albert voters to that…

          Just when you thought Tim couldn’t get any more desperate!…

        • mickysavage 11.1.2.4

          Sorry Tim but having a noisy smelling snarly transport corridor that has a hundred thousand or so car trips per day running down the middle of your community is actually a big issue.

          And for Maioro Road and Tiverton Road residents having nearly as many car trips running down your neighbourhood road is also a really big issue.

          Minimise their concerns at your/the nat’s peril.

      • Scribe 11.1.3

        Eddie,

        The focus on the racist pharmacist is what journalists call a news “hook”. It’s an interesting aspect of the story that will draw people in to read it. It’s used all the time, and it’s easily the most interesting part of this particular article.

        You’re right that it’d be nice to see a focus on the issues that matter to Mt Albert — my electorate, by the way — but there’s still 5+ weeks till the election. There are bound to be plenty of these stories, and more delving into the past of the main candidates.

        This fluff is inevitable.

  12. Brett Dale 12

    What type of idiot wont vote for someone who is Asian? Thats almost worst than not letting someone into your coffee shop because they are from Israel, but hey shes from national, so I guess the media is using this huh, I can imagine what you guys would be saying someone wouldn’t vote for a Labour MP because they are Maori, it will be over the standard 24/7.

    • felix 12.1

      Oh look, something hypocritical just happened in Brett’s mind. That’s just awful.

      We can only hope it doesn’t happen in real life too, that could be even worse.

    • Maynard J 12.2

      The main thrust of the article here is that The Herald is focussing on the race issue (and the subject is called an ‘old racist’ – hardly a term of endearment but one which I will now explain at least half applies to you).

      You missed that, and then basically claimed The Standard authors are racist by saying they do not care someone will not vote for an asian but would care if they will not vote for a Maori. Since you are calling people racist, best provide something to support that, or gracefully apologise.

      • gobsmacked 12.2.1

        I can imagine what you guys would be saying someone wouldn’t vote for a Labour MP because they are Maori.

        A racist.

        • Maynard J 12.2.1.1

          I think Brett Dale has a much worse imaginary scenario going on.

    • Eddie 12.3

      No it wouldn’t be, not if it was just some run of the mill racist. I mean what’s the angle? – “racist nobody says racist stuff?”. We know they exist, unfortunately. We would only spend time talking about someone’s racist comments if they were a person of political importance.

      Which is the point, I suppose, the Herald decided to single out the racist and focus on him even though he was just some guy and not representative of thepeople they interviewed – why?

  13. George Darroch 13

    I know I’m late here. But could it be that there are actual racists in Mt Albert, and that their existence and possible influence on the election is in-fact newsworthy?

  14. George Darroch 14

    Instead of coming out and saying ‘this is awful, Lee should not have to suffer racism, but vote for the better candidate based on who they are’, Eddie and the rest of the Standard regulars are acting as if the fact of having the story about racism printed is the injustice here.

    • Maynard J 14.1

      It is, don’t you think? People fight for media freedoms, there are laws about it and we get served this swill. I sort of disagree with the punch line ‘It’s clearly a dogwhistle “if you don’t vote Melissa Lee, you’re a racist too” but the target, the article, is legit.

      • gobsmacked 14.1.1

        George, have you read the story?

        It is about one man. He could have said he was voting ACT, because the aliens who visit him every night told him to. He could have said any old shit. Sadly, people do.

        If the reporter had found more people saying racist crap, he would have been onto something. Evidently he didn’t.

        A reporter could, at any time in the last 9 years, have walked down the street and found voters giving nasty misogynist or homophobic reasons for not voting for Helen Clark. Within minutes. (Sooner, on certain blogs).

        But I never saw that story beaten up in the Herald. Ever.

        So yes, let’s have real investigation and analysis of the issues of racism and bigotry. This wasn’t it.

  15. Perhaps we are reading too much into this. We are thinking there is a cunning plan to subvert democracy and increase the chances of National winning when maybe it was a tired staffer who thought it might sell more papers?

    Either way the chances of my renewing my long expired Herald subscription are even more remote.

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    The first big test of the new Government’s approach to Treaty matters is likely to be seen in the return of the Resource Management Act. RMA Minister Chris Bishop has confirmed that he intends to introduce legislation to repeal Labour’s recently passed Natural and Built Environments Act and its ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 day ago
  • The Song of Saqua: Volume III
    Time to revisit something I haven’t covered in a while: the D&D campaign, with Saqua the aquatic half-vampire. Last seen in July: https://phuulishfellow.wordpress.com/2023/07/27/the-song-of-saqua-volume-ii/ The delay is understandable, once one realises that the interim saw our DM come down with a life-threatening medical situation. They have since survived to make ...
    1 day ago
  • Chris Bishop: Smokin’
    Yes. Correct. It was an election result. And now we are the elected government. ...
    My ThinksBy boonman
    2 days ago
  • 2023 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #48
    A chronological listing of news and opinion articles posted on the Skeptical Science  Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Nov 26, 2023 thru Dec 2, 2023. Story of the Week CO2 readings from Mauna Loa show failure to combat climate change Daily atmospheric carbon dioxide data from Hawaiian volcano more ...
    2 days ago
  • Affirmative Action.
    Affirmative Action was a key theme at this election, although I don’t recall anyone using those particular words during the campaign.They’re positive words, and the way the topic was talked about was anything but. It certainly wasn’t a campaign of saying that Affirmative Action was a good thing, but that, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • 100 days of something
    It was at the end of the Foxton straights, at the end of 1978, at 100km/h, that someone tried to grab me from behind on my Yamaha.They seemed to be yanking my backpack. My first thought was outrage. My second was: but how? Where have they come from? And my ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • Look who’s stepped up to champion Winston
    There’s no news to be gleaned from the government’s official website today  – it contains nothing more than the message about the site being under maintenance. The time this maintenance job is taking and the costs being incurred have us musing on the government’s commitment to an assault on inflation. ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    3 days ago
  • What's The Story?
    Don’t you sometimes wish they’d just tell the truth? No matter how abhorrent or ugly, just straight up tell us the truth?C’mon guys, what you’re doing is bad enough anyway, pretending you’re not is only adding insult to injury.Instead of all this bollocks about the Smokefree changes being to do ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • The longest of weeks
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past week’s editions.Friday Under New Management Week in review, quiz style1. Which of these best describes Aotearoa?a. Progressive nation, proud of its egalitarian spirit and belief in a fair go b. Best little country on the planet c. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • Suggested sessions of EGU24 to submit abstracts to
    Like earlier this year, members from our team will be involved with next year's General Assembly of the European Geosciences Union (EGU). The conference will take place on premise in Vienna as well as online from April 14 to 19, 2024. The session catalog has been available since November 1 ...
    3 days ago
  • Under New Management
    1. Which of these best describes Aotearoa?a. Progressive nation, proud of its egalitarian spirit and belief in a fair go b. Best little country on the planet c. Under New Management 2. Which of these best describes the 100 days of action announced this week by the new government?a. Petulantb. Simplistic and wrongheaded c. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • While we wait patiently, our new Minister of Education is up and going with a 100-day action plan
    Sorry to say, the government’s official website is still out of action. When Point of Order paid its daily visit, the message was the same as it has been for the past week: Site under maintenance Beehive.govt.nz is currently under maintenance. We will be back shortly. Thank you for your ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    4 days ago
  • DAVID FARRAR: Hysterical bullshit
    Radio NZ reports: Te Pāti Māori’s co-leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer has accused the new government of “deliberate .. systemic genocide” over its policies to roll back the smokefree policy and the Māori Health Authority. The left love hysterical language. If you oppose racial quotas in laws, you are a racist. And now if you sack ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #48 2023
    Open access notables From this week's government/NGO section, longitudinal data is gold and Leisorowitz, Maibachi et al. continue to mine ore from the US public with Climate Change in the American Mind: Politics & Policy, Fall 2023: Drawing on a representative sample of the U.S. adult population, the authors describe how registered ...
    4 days ago
  • ELE LUDEMANN: It wasn’t just $55 million
    Ele Ludemann writes –  Winston Peters reckons media outlets were bribed by the $55 million Public Interest Journalism Fund. He is not the first to make such an accusation. Last year, the Platform outlined conditions media signed up to in return for funds from the PJIF: . . . ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 1-December-2023
    Wow, it’s December already, and it’s a Friday. So here are few things that caught our attention recently. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday Matt covered the new government’s coalition agreements and what they mean for transport. On Tuesday Matt looked at AT’s plans for fare increases ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    4 days ago
  • Shane MacGowan Is Gone.
    Late 1996, The Dogs Bollix, Tamaki Makaurau.I’m at the front of the bar yelling my order to the bartender, jostling with other thirsty punters on a Friday night, keen to piss their wages up against a wall letting loose. The black stuff, long luscious pints of creamy goodness. Back down ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to Dec 1
    Nicola Willis, Chris Bishop and other National, ACT and NZ First MPs applaud the signing of the coalition agreements, which included the reversal of anti-smoking measures while accelerating tax cuts for landlords. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The five things that mattered in Aotearoa’s political economy that we wrote ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • 2023 More Reading: November (+ Writing Update)
    Completed reads for November: A Modern Utopia, by H.G. Wells The Vampire (poem), by Heinrich August Ossenfelder The Corpus Hermeticum The Corpus Hermeticum is Mead’s translation. Now, this is indeed a very quiet month for reading. But there is a reason for that… You see, ...
    4 days ago
  • Forward to 2017
    The coalition party agreements are mainly about returning to 2017 when National lost power. They show commonalities but also some serious divergencies.The two coalition agreements – one National and ACT, the other National and New Zealand First – are more than policy documents. They also describe the processes of the ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    5 days ago
  • Questions a nine year old might ask the new Prime Minister
    First QuestionYou’re going to crack down on people ram-raiding dairies, because you say hard-working dairy owners shouldn’t have to worry about getting ram-raided.But once the chemist shops have pseudoephedrine in them again, they're going to get ram-raided all the time. Do chemists not work as hard as dairy owners?Second QuestionYou ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Questions a nine year old might ask the new Prime Minister
    First QuestionYou’re going to crack down on people ram-raiding dairies, because you say hard-working dairy owners shouldn’t have to worry about getting ram-raided.But once the chemist shops have pseudoephedrine in them again, they're going to get ram-raided all the time. Do chemists not work as hard as dairy owners?Second QuestionYou ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Finally
    Henry Kissinger is finally dead. Good fucking riddance. While Americans loved him, he was a war criminal, responsible for most of the atrocities of the final quarter of the twentieth century. Cambodia. Bangladesh. Chile. East Timor. All Kissinger. Because of these crimes, Americans revere him as a "statesman" (which says ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Government in a hurry – Luxon lists 49 priorities in 100-day plan while Peters pledges to strength...
    Buzz from the Beehive Yes, ministers in the new government are delivering speeches and releasing press statements. But the message on the government’s official website was the same as it has been for the past several days, when Point of Order went looking for news from the Beehive that had ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • DAVID FARRAR: Luxon is absolutely right
    David Farrar writes  –  1 News reports: Christopher Luxon says he was told by some Kiwis on the campaign trail they “didn’t know” the difference between Waka Kotahi, Te Pūkenga and Te Whatu Ora. Speaking to Breakfast, the incoming prime minister said having English first on government agencies will “make sure” ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • Top 10 at 10 am for Thursday, Nov 30
    There are fears that mooted changes to building consent liability could end up driving the building industry into an uninsured hole. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Here’s my pick of the top 10 news and analysis links elsewhere as of 10 am on Thursday, November 30, including:The new Government’s ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on how climate change threatens cricket‘s future
    Well that didn’t last long, did it? Mere days after taking on what he called the “awesome responsibility” of being Prime Minister, M Christopher Luxon has started blaming everyone else, and complaining that he has inherited “economic vandalism on an unprecedented scale” – which is how most of us are ...
    5 days ago
  • We need to talk about Tory.
    The first I knew of the news about Tory Whanau was when a tweet came up in my feed.The sort of tweet that makes you question humanity, or at least why you bother with Twitter. Which is increasingly a cesspit of vile inhabitants who lurk spreading negativity, hate, and every ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Dangling Transport Solutions
    Cable Cars, Gondolas, Ropeways and Aerial Trams are all names for essentially the same technology and the world’s biggest maker of them are here to sell them as an public transport solution. Stuff reports: Austrian cable car company Doppelmayr has launched its case for adding aerial cable cars to New ...
    5 days ago
  • November AMA
    Hi,It’s been awhile since I’ve done an Ask-Me-Anything on here, so today’s the day. Ask anything you like in the comments section, and I’ll be checking in today and tomorrow to answer.Leave a commentNext week I’ll be giving away a bunch of these Mister Organ blu-rays for readers in New ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • National’s early moves adding to cost of living pressure
    The cost of living grind continues, and the economic and inflation honeymoon is over before it began. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: PM Christopher Luxon unveiled his 100 day plan yesterday with an avowed focus of reducing cost-of-living pressures, but his Government’s initial moves and promises are actually elevating ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Backwards to the future
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has confirmed that it will be back to the future on planning legislation. This will be just one of a number of moves which will see the new government go backwards as it repeals and cost-cuts its way into power. They will completely repeal one ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • New initiatives in science and technology could point the way ahead for Luxon government
    As the new government settles into the Beehive, expectations are high that it can sort out some  of  the  economic issues  confronting  New Zealand. It may take time for some new  ministers to get to grips with the range of their portfolio work and responsibilities before they can launch the  changes that  ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    6 days ago
  • Treaty pledge to secure funding is contentious – but is Peters being pursued by a lynch mob after ...
    TV3 political editor Jenna Lynch was among the corps of political reporters who bridled, when Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters told them what he thinks of them (which is not much). She was unabashed about letting her audience know she had bridled. More usefully, she drew attention to something which ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • How long does this last?
    I have a clear memory of every election since 1969 in this plucky little nation of ours. I swear I cannot recall a single one where the question being asked repeatedly in the first week of the new government was: how long do you reckon they’ll last? And that includes all ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • National’s giveaway politics
    We already know that national plans to boost smoking rates to collect more tobacco tax so they can give huge tax-cuts to mega-landlords. But this morning that policy got even more obscene - because it turns out that the tax cut is retrospective: Residential landlords will be able to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER: Who’s driving the right-wing bus?
    Who’s At The Wheel? The electorate’s message, as aggregated in the polling booths on 14 October, turned out to be a conservative political agenda stronger than anything New Zealand has seen in five decades. In 1975, Bill Rowling was run over by just one bus, with Rob Muldoon at the wheel. In 2023, ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • GRAHAM ADAMS:  Media knives flashing for Luxon’s government
    The fear and loathing among legacy journalists is astonishing Graham Adams writes – No one is going to die wondering how some of the nation’s most influential journalists personally view the new National-led government. It has become abundantly clear within a few days of the coalition agreements ...
    Point of OrderBy gadams1000
    6 days ago
  • Top 10 news links for Wednesday, Nov 29
    TL;DR: Here’s my pick of top 10 news links elsewhere for Wednesday November 29, including:The early return of interest deductibility for landlords could see rebates paid on previous taxes and the cost increase to $3 billion from National’s initial estimate of $2.1 billion, CTU Economist Craig Renney estimated here last ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Smokefree Fallout and a High Profile Resignation.
    The day after being sworn in the new cabinet met yesterday, to enjoy their honeymoon phase. You remember, that period after a new government takes power where the country, and the media, are optimistic about them, because they haven’t had a chance to stuff anything about yet.Sadly the nuptials complete ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • As Cabinet revs up, building plans go on hold
    Wellington Council hoardings proclaim its preparations for population growth, but around the country councils are putting things on hold in the absence of clear funding pathways for infrastructure, and despite exploding migrant numbers. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Cabinet meets in earnest today to consider the new Government’s 100-day ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • National takes over infrastructure
    Though New Zealand First may have had ambitions to run the infrastructure portfolios, National would seem to have ended up firmly in control of them.  POLITIK has obtained a private memo to members of Infrastructure NZ yesterday, which shows that the peak organisation for infrastructure sees  National MPs Chris ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • At a glance – Evidence for global warming
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    7 days ago
  • Who’s Driving The Right-Wing Bus?
    Who’s At The Wheel? The electorate’s message, as aggregated in the polling booths on 14 October, turned out to be a conservative political agenda stronger than anything New Zealand has seen in five decades. In 1975, Bill Rowling was run over by just one bus, with Rob Muldoon at the wheel. In ...
    7 days ago
  • Sanity break
    Cheers to reader Deane for this quote from Breakfast TV today:Chloe Swarbrick to Brook van Velden re the coalition agreement: “... an unhinged grab-bag of hot takes from your drunk uncle at Christmas”Cheers also to actual Prime Minister of a country Christopher Luxon for dorking up his swearing-in vows.But that's enough ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Sanity break
    Cheers to reader Deane for this quote from Breakfast TV today:Chloe Swarbrick to Brook van Velden re the coalition agreement: “... an unhinged grab-bag of hot takes from your drunk uncle at Christmas”Cheers also to actual Prime Minister of a country Christopher Luxon for dorking up his swearing-in vows.But that's enough ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • National’s murderous smoking policy
    One of the big underlying problems in our political system is the prevalence of short-term thinking, most usually seen in the periodic massive infrastructure failures at a local government level caused by them skimping on maintenance to Keep Rates Low. But the new government has given us a new example, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • NZ has a chance to rise again as our new government gets spending under control
    New Zealand has  a chance  to  rise  again. Under the  previous  government, the  number of New Zealanders below the poverty line was increasing  year by year. The Luxon-led government  must reverse that trend – and set about stabilising  the  pillars  of the economy. After the  mismanagement  of the outgoing government created   huge ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    7 days ago
  • KARL DU FRESNE: Media and the new government
    Two articles by Karl du Fresne bring media coverage of the new government into considerations.  He writes –    Tuesday, November 28, 2023 The left-wing media needed a line of attack, and they found one The left-wing media pack wasted no time identifying the new government’s weakest point. Seething over ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    7 days ago
  • PHILIP CRUMP:  Team of rivals – a CEO approach to government leadership
    The work begins Philip Crump wrote this article ahead of the new government being sworn in yesterday – Later today the new National-led coalition government will be sworn in, and the hard work begins. At the core of government will be three men – each a leader ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    7 days ago
  • Black Friday
    As everyone who watches television or is on the mailing list for any of our major stores will confirm, “Black Friday” has become the longest running commercial extravaganza and celebration in our history. Although its origins are obscure (presumably dreamt up by American salesmen a few years ago), it has ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • In Defense of the Media.
    Yesterday the Ministers in the next government were sworn in by our Governor General. A day of tradition and ceremony, of decorum and respect. Usually.But yesterday Winston Peters, the incoming Deputy Prime Minister, and Foreign Minister, of our nation used it, as he did with the signing of the coalition ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Top 10 news links at 10 am for Tuesday, Nov 28
    Nicola Willis’ first move was ‘spilling the tea’ on what she called the ‘sobering’ state of the nation’s books, but she had better be able to back that up in the HYEFU. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Here’s my pick of top 10 news links elsewhere at 10 am ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • PT use up but fare increases coming
    Yesterday Auckland Transport were celebrating, as the most recent Sunday was the busiest Sunday they’ve ever had. That’s a great outcome and I’m sure the ...
    1 week ago
  • The very opposite of social investment
    Nicola Willis (in blue) at the signing of the coalition agreement, before being sworn in as both Finance Minister and Social Investment Minister. National’s plan to unwind anti-smoking measures will benefit her in the first role, but how does it stack up from a social investment viewpoint? Photo: Lynn Grieveson ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Giving Tuesday
    For the first time "in history" we decided to jump on the "Giving Tuesday" bandwagon in order to make you aware of the options you have to contribute to our work! Projects supported by Skeptical Science Inc. Skeptical Science Skeptical Science is an all-volunteer organization but ...
    1 week ago
  • Let's open the books with Nicotine Willis
    Let’s say it’s 1984,and there's a dreary little nation at the bottom of the Pacific whose name rhymes with New Zealand,and they've just had an election.Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, will you look at the state of these books we’ve opened,cries the incoming government, will you look at all this mountain ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Stopping oil
    National is promising to bring back offshore oil and gas drilling. Naturally, the Greens have organised a petition campaign to try and stop them. You should sign it - every little bit helps, and as the struggle over mining conservation land showed, even National can be deterred if enough people ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Don’t accept Human Rights Commission reading of data on Treaty partnership – read the survey fin...
    Wellington is braced for a “massive impact’ from the new government’s cutting public service jobs, The Post somewhat grimly reported today. Expectations of an economic and social jolt are based on the National-Act coalition agreement to cut public service numbers in each government agency in a cost-trimming exercise  “informed by” head ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 week ago

  • New Zealand welcomes European Parliament vote on the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement
    A significant milestone in ratifying the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA) was reached last night, with 524 of the 705 member European Parliament voting in favour to approve the agreement. “I’m delighted to hear of the successful vote to approve the NZ-EU FTA in the European Parliament overnight. This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Further humanitarian support for Gaza, the West Bank and Israel
    The Government is contributing a further $5 million to support the response to urgent humanitarian needs in Gaza, the West Bank and Israel, bringing New Zealand’s total contribution to the humanitarian response so far to $10 million. “New Zealand is deeply saddened by the loss of civilian life and the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago

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