Giovanni Tiso on Dirty Politics

Written By: - Date published: 3:53 pm, September 11th, 2014 - 47 comments
Categories: blogs, Deep stuff, Media - Tags: , ,

Twitter is something of a political institution now. More and more journalists use it as a medium to break and track stories. There are also a few “micro bloggers” who use Twitter very effectively as a means of communicating and developing discussions. Twitter’s character limitation requires clarity and conciseness of thought that is a joy to read when it is done properly.

Giovanni Tiso is one of the best proponents of the art. He speaks his mind and says very precisely what he thinks. He is not afraid to criticise Labour or others when he thinks they deserve it.  His blog is always a delight to read and he should have won the recent Canon blog of the year award.

In a recent series of tweets he managed to very clearly highlight important issues that arise from Dirty Politics about the relationship between the political parties and the media.  Why didn’t the media tell us about the cosy relationship between Cameron Slater and various reporters?  Why has there not been any apparent change in the existing relationships that were exposed in Nicky Hager’s book?

A number of other issues are also raised by Giovanni’s tweets.  I thought they would form a good basis for discussion.

47 comments on “Giovanni Tiso on Dirty Politics”

  1. Tracey 1

    Nothing to add. Succinctly and well said but who is listening that can act on it?

    A commission of inquiry…

  2. Pete 2

    It’s all so overwhelming, isn’t it? Maybe we can entice The Guardian to expand to NZ as it has to Australia. It’s supported by a trust rather than the standard commercial model. As long as there an imperative for profit in the media, this kind of thing will continue because it sells. Blogs are wonderful, but they lack the imprimatur a major daily or broadcasting network provides. They also lack the resources.

    • yeshe 2.1

      Well, Glenn Greenwald will be here a week from Monday .. perhaps he is already persuaded to some degree ?

      And we do need a full Royal Commission not restricted by government; three judges and reporting back to GG, if he can be trusted.

      And I’d like Dame Sylvia Cartwright to be one of them … she was exemplary heading the Nat Womens commission.

    • greywarbler 2.2

      Venturing into using on-line APN provincial newspaper option, it’s not as easy to use as they suggest. There is a free trial period of a month. But there isn’t any archival service offered, only the current day’s copy available for turning the pages.

      What’s the use of that? Is that the standard commercial model for on-line newspapers?
      So far I have not read every bit of information provided. If I spend half an hour or more reading and following the instructions maybe I will find it provides all required.

  3. Rosie 3

    Such uncanny timing. Have just got off the phone to a friend. One of the topics of conversations was along the lines of ‘given the relationship between some journalists and Slater why has nothing changed in the way stories are reported and or framed. Where is the fall out from the revelations of Hagers book and why is it business as usual in the media?’

    We didn’t have the answers, especially in relation to points 5 and 6.

    And yes, media, third track indeed.

  4. weka 4

    One of the best summations of Slatergate I’ve seen. We know what Slater is. We also know that National can and if prodded enough will replace Key, Ede etc. But who will hold the fourth estate accountable? If we look at what will undercut the VRWC, is it not the media we we should be relying on?

    btw, for those that don’t follow twitter, there was an exchange earlier in the week where Sacha Dylan criticised a journo for their reporting (on twitter) something about Cunliffe without saying where it came from, and then got shit for it. That’s one example of the tone argument being applied here. See

    http://sachadylan.com/reporting-in-wake-of-dirty-politics/

    The other thing I noticed today was Stephen Franks’ spin attempt to normalise smearing a la WO and the VRWC. It looked like a much smoother, more considered approach than the original ‘oh everyone does it, nothing to see here’ reaction after DP came out. See Russel Brown’s response here,

    http://publicaddress.net/system/cafe/southerly-sign-this-petition/?p=323813#post323813

  5. Anne 5

    And where is the last dump by Rawshark? Do they plan to deny us the information contained therein BEFORE the election? Is it because that info. further entrenches the trail to the PM’s Office and John Key himself?

    And a big NO. I don’t buy the line they can’t… because the Whale Boil has continued with further litigation. A false smokescreen. Judge Fogarty has already given them the go ahead to release the political emails already in their possession.

  6. Penny Bright 6

    I now have the PROOF, in writing, that the Office of the Prime Minister is out of control, confirmed by none other than the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff, Wayne Eagleson:

    ______________________________________________________________________________________

    MEDIA ALERT!

    Is the politically partisan Office of the Prime Minister actually ‘out of control’?

    YES according to this OIA reply, received today 11 September 2014, by Prime Minister John Key’s Chief of Staff, Wayne Eagleson: (attached)
    ________________________________________________________________________________

    3) Copies of the ‘procedure’ or ‘protocol(s)’ to be followed by all staff attached to or employed by the Office of the Prime Minister.

    There are no specific procedures or protocols to be followed by Ministerial office staff.

    4) A copy of the organisational ‘flow chart’ (or the like) which shows the clear reporting framework to be followed by all staff in your Office of the Prime Minister.

    There is no organisational chart for this Office and, accordingly, this part of your request is formally declined under section 18(e) of the Official Information Act “that the document alleged to contain the information requested does not exist or cannot be found”.

    However, I can confirm that all staff in this Office report to me as the Chief of Staff for both the Office of the Prime Minister and the Office of the Leader of the Parliamentary National Party.

    5) A copy of the budget for your Office of the Prime Minister, with a clear breakdown of monies paid by whom, for what, on an annual basis from 2008 – 2014.

    There is no separate budget for the Office of the Prime Minister.
    The Department of Internal Affairs has a budget for all Ministerial offices as a whole, but not for individual offices.

    ______________________________________________________________________________________

    As some one who has never been able to get a copy of my SIS file, and could not get it ‘confirmed or denied’ that I was one of the 88 New Zealanders upon whom the GCSB unlawfully spied upon, I am REALLY concerned with the revelations contained within this OIA reply.

    Is anybody else?

    If not – why not?

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption / anti-privatisation Public Watchdog’

    ‘Investigative Activist’

    • Rosie 6.1

      Penny. Wow. Can I please confirm, Wayne Eagleson actually replied saying “There are no specific procedures or protocols to be followed by Ministerial office staff.”? Just wanted to see if I was understanding that info clearly.

      (Just for starters).

  7. Guesting 7

    Met one of my neighbours recently. We both agreed Dirty Politics was highly informative exposing the political web in NZ. Thirty years I’ve been paying attention to political media, and this is the first time I’ve had these diseased strands highlighted. Graham, Slater, Jones, Williams: these names and more should have their back histories summarised each time they are quoted in MSM.

    How does a recent immigrant – focusing on getting their business or life together – ever find time to observe and understand the back-workings of power, if “political journalists” don’t write about it?

  8. Colonial Viper 8

    Tiso was spot on with this series of Tweets. Our mass media establishment is simply going on with business as usual as if nothing has happened; Slater has his radio talk show back, Hooton and Farrar still on-board as independent commentators, Key still happy to talk to Slater, Paul Henry hosting the post-debate show etc.

    This simply shows that they think they hold all the power and all the cards, still. So why change this splendid mutually beneficial arrangement even if it is little more than a highly paid circle jerk? And sadly, perhaps they are right.

  9. Tigger 9

    Thanks for highlighting this. Perfectly stated in just a few tweets.

    The media needs to know that many of us are aware of their collusion and, since nothing has changed, we will have to make changes for them. Time to expose their collusion and call them to account.

    Personally I’m trying to decide where to start – so many problem outlets and ‘journos’.

    • Anne 9.1

      Personally I’m trying to decide where to start – so many problem outlets and ‘journos’.

      So true Tigger. The frustration is immense. What can we do? We need some strong leadership who can nationally organise the fight back. A few hundred people standing around with placards is not the answer. Nobody takes any notice. But first we need the info. Will Rawshark give it to us because it looks increasingly like the lily livered. corruption loving MSM are not going to do their job.

    • karol 9.2

      Some of us were critical to Tova O’Brien last night on Twitter, about her ending her 3 News report saying “dirty politics” were happening among Pasifica in Sth Auckland – the story was about the Labour candidate being critical of the Nat candidate using a Samoan title she was not entitled to.

      O’Brien got aggressively defensive in her responses – as though she does not accept any criticism.

      I tweeted:

      Karol Scribe ‏@KarolScribe Sep 9
      Not all criticism of political opponents is “dirty politics”. Read the book @TovaOBrien. #fudgingtheissues #pacificvote #nzpol’

      Here’s what she tweeted after our first round of criticisms:

      Her tweet and our responses to it at the link. Her first tweet:

      For all you haters out there both Su’a William Sio and Misa Fia Turner agree the fight for Mangere has got dirty. They’d know and I agree.

      Some of our responses:

      Sacha Dylan ‏@kaupapa 24h
      @TovaOBrien did they say what else was dirty other than the title thing?

      dirtydeedsnz ‏@dirtydeedsnz 24h
      @kaupapa @TovaOBrien on twitter yestday – Sio said a rumour Church Minister signed ppl up as Nat members & told them they must now vote Nats

      Ben Ross ‏@BenRoss_AKL 24h
      @kaupapa @TovaOBrien seeing a few tweets going around about Nats “coercing” Pasifika members to join the Nat Party. Not sure on validity

      Karol Scribe ‏@KarolScribe 24h
      @TovaOBrien Dirty Politics wasn’t evident in the 3 News report. Just looked like a bit of editorialising at the end of the report.

      Karol Scribe ‏@KarolScribe 23h
      @TovaOBrien What do you all mean by “dirty”? Each may mean something different by it.

      Steve Parkes ‏@parkesweb 23h
      @TovaOBrien in the context of the story by itself, it seemed a bit of a leap, esp. in light of what ‘dirty’ has otherwise been applied to.

      dazza ‏@dazzabrazza 23h
      @TovaOBrien @dirtydeedsnz @KarolScribe If you don’t want NZ mocking you, then don’t patronise us with sensationalism. You’re not on Fox News

      Then O’Brien came back with this:

      @dirtydeedsnz @dazzabrazza @KarolScribe thanks I’ll be sure to call next time I say anything

      How is it that MSM journalists don’t seem to accept they can be held to account by members of the public? And especially after “Dirty Politics”

      • David H 9.2.1

        I just call her Spinna Obrien on Twitter.

      • Rosie 9.2.2

        Yes, I saw that story on 3 News. Remember what I said about her “intern ship” at Radio Active approximately 4 years ago? From where she was back then with the DJ having to educate her on NZ political history and how to pronounce politicians names, to where she is now – a manufactured media puppet. coached and groomed, all the way.

        No independent reporting, just a whisper in her ear from the boss.

        • Rosie 9.2.2.1

          Couldn’t edit the above.

          PS and as for “all you haters out there” sound like something someone would say in the stuff.co.nz comments sections. Kind of low rent for a “journalist”.

          You’re right karol, she needs to read The Book so she can understand what “Dirty Politics” really is. She can’t appropriate the term to suit her story.

      • Blue 9.2.3

        How is it that MSM journalists don’t seem to accept they can be held to account by members of the public? And especially after “Dirty Politics”

        The news media trade in being right all the time, so when they are wrong it’s professional suicide to admit it. They just have to keep pretending they were actually right all along.

        The cognitive dissonance involved would make a politician proud.

      • Tracey 9.2.4

        wow. v thinned skinned.

    • Bill 9.3

      The problem Tigger – I’m sure you’re aware of this – is that ‘exposing’ something needs a medium, and that, for us, is the very same media that we seek to expose.

      “1984? Meet Pravda.” – oh joy.

  10. Bill 10

    Why would any media organisation change its modus operandi?

    That’s a serious question.

    See, they all knew damned fine well that Slater and Farrar were part of a National Party network. The only difference now, is that we know too.

    So, is it at all far fetched to suggest that Fisher and Nippert will be allowed to say what they have to say, and that what they have to say will be widely ignored by ‘the industry’ as it simply ‘carries on, carrying on’?

    Sure, a proper state broadcaster could offer a counter balance and be held up as a source of ‘honest’ reporting. But that’s, at best, a fair way off, and may not ever eventuate.

    Meanwhile, media will obfuscate, ignore and downplay the importance of the ‘Dirty Politics’ material which, well…should be the expectation given the role they play. And at some point in the not too distant, when the heat has died down a bit, Fisher and Nippert will find their careers in a cul-de-sac, or worse, ended.

    • They won’t change unless there are consequences. When Labour is next in government there needs to be an example set, pour encourager les autres.

      • Tracey 10.1.1

        a self regating press council has to go for a start… but any appointments to a regulated body wld be political? maybe appointments approved by 80% of arliament vote?

  11. Tanz 11

    Whatever our political leanings, it is scary that the New Lynn candidate for the Conservatives is having threats made etc, apparently by the media. FFS, this is a democracy. Totally scary.

  12. disturbed 12

    Corrupt MSM for sure but what do we do?

    Guardian sounds good.

  13. Penny Bright 13

    I have yet to receive either an acknowledgment or reply from Stephen Franks to yesterday’s following letter:
    ___________________________________________________________________________________

    10 September 2014

    OPEN LETTER to Stephen Franks, Principal, Franks and Ogilvie

    “Are these ‘WhaleDump’ emails true?”

    Dear Stephen,

    It is with some deep concern, that I have read the following alleged email correspondence, between Jordan Williams, then, as I understand it, employed as a Solicitor at your company, Franks and Ogilvie.

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/opinion/twitter-suspends-whaledump-account

    There is significant public interest in these matters relating to ‘dirty politics’.

    I would appreciate your honest response to the following questions:

    Are these emails true?

    Yes or no?

    If yes, is the ‘Steve’ referred to in these emails by Jordan Williams, yourself?

    Yes or no?

    Is it correct that Jordan Williams now employed as a ‘consultant’ as opposed to a ‘solicitor’ by Franks and Ogilvie?

    http://www.franksogilvie.co.nz/

    http://nz.linkedin.com/pub/jordan-williams/20/b29/34

    If yes, why is Jordan Williams not currently listed as a consultant in your list of ‘people’ at Franks and Ogilvie?

    I note that in 2008, you were the National Party candidate for Wellington Central.

    http://www.stephenfranks.co.nz/wellington-central-candidate-for-the-national-party/

    Are you still connected in any way with the National Party?

    If so – how?

    Looking forward to your prompt reply.

    Yours sincerely,

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption /anti-privatisation Public Watchdog’

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    I understand that Jordan Williams no longer works for Franks and Ogilvie as a ‘solicitor’.

    It appears that Franks and Ogilvie are now attempting to distance themselves from Jordan Williams?

    If so – how is it that on LinkedIn – Jordan Williams purports to be a ‘consultant’ for Franks and Ogilvie?

    http://nz.linkedin.com/pub/jordan-williams/20/b29/34

    Are Franks and Ogilvie currently employing/paying Jordan Williams as a ‘consultant’ – YES or NO?

    Time for a bit of ‘transparency’?

    Given the ‘dirty and despicable politics’ in which Jordan Williams was allegedly so involved, as exposed in ‘Dirty Politics’ which so many critics thereof, have apparently still yet to read for themselves, how brainy is it for Franks and Ogilvie to maintain any formal links with one of the allegedly key players?

    If Franks and Ogilvie are still employing the services of Jordan Williams as a ‘consultant’, whilst giving the impression of having cut ties with him, then, in my considered opinion, that does not make Franks and Ogilvie appear very ‘trustworthy’?

    No disrespect – but seriously – how also are the public supposed to trust the ‘Tax Payers Union’?

    New Zealand – ‘perceived’ to be the ‘least corrupt country in the world’ ………

    Anyone heard anything lately from Transparency International about these politically explosive corruption scandals?

    http://www.transparency.org.nz/

    Most Trusted Public Sector in the World

    “New Zealand’s high trust public sector is its greatest competitive advantage”
    -Phil O’Reilly Chief Executive of Business New Zealand

    New Zealand’s public sector is consistently ranked among the least corrupt in the world. This reputation is not a coincidence. New Zealand has a long tradition of being first with legislation aimed at promoting human rights.
    Milestones include the Public Service Act 1912 and the Official Information Act 1982.

    TINZ is committed to continue this tradition through actions that increase public sector transparency and extend good governance throughout all New Zealand institutions.”

    Yeah – whatever ………

    (File under ‘You Couldn’t Make This Sh*t Up’)

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption /anti-privatisation Public Watchdog’

  14. His blog is always a delight to read

    You need to get out more.

  15. Tautoko Viper 15

    Here are some questions I have:

    1. What if the information that has been released by Rawshark to the media (which has not yet been released to the public) is published after the election and results in an inquiry leading to a vote of no confidence in the newly elected National government? Would this mean that another election is required at considerable expense to the taxpayer?

    2. How ethical is it for the MSM to sit on information so that voters cannot make an educated vote particularly when the suppression of the information advantages the party that has been at fault at the expense of political parties who have already been damaged politically by the deliberate misuse of political power?

    (” Perverting the course of justice can be any of three acts:
    Fabricating or disposing of evidence
    Intimidating or threatening a witness or juror
    Intimidating or threatening a judge

    Also criminal are:
    1.conspiring with another to pervert the course of justice, and
    2.intending to pervert the course of justice.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perverting_the_course_of_justice

    • karol 15.1

      What information do you think they are sitting on? Where did you get the idea they are doing that?

      According to Hager, the most significant stuff was used for his book, and the media just have some extra bits and pieces.

      • weka 15.1.1

        Is that recent from Hager, karol?

        • karol 15.1.1.1

          That was what he said in the qu & a after the talk he gave at Waikato Uni earlier this week. It’s on video.

          Someone asked him specifically about whether their was any more unpublished emails to come from the media.

  16. ropata 16

    Infographic of Dirty politics, crowdsourced by twitter users

    (Via:SpinBin: This is what real journalism looks like … a hell of a good article)

    • emergency mike 16.1

      Nice article, you might like this one too ropata. A long and in two parts, I admit I kind of skimmed it. But it’s a hugely in depth first hand report of the journos behaviour at the “puffed up little shit” incident. Corkery was being kind.

  17. ropata 17

    Assiduous digging by Frank Macskasy on TDB reveals that dirty politics is steaming ahead with barely a hiccup

    http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/09/11/exclusive-was-the-donghua-liu-affair-another-example-of-dirty-politics/

    Also, anyone calling Bomber Bradbury an overwrought conspiracy theorist has not been paying attention. Seems that Odgers/Slater/Hooten really *were* hoping to kill Hager

    http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/09/08/blogwatch-why-is-whaleoil-deleting-blogs/

    • karol 17.1

      It’s a very good bit of investigation by Frank.

      however, When I readcit, I tought the same as one of the commenters. There’s no telling if the news art cles were published before or after the same stories appeared on WO and KB. The date on MSM online articles changes each time the story is updated. So, what appears on the website months after the article was published, is the last date and time it was updated.

  18. Paul 18

    Dann smearing the Greens.
    http://tvnz.co.nz/vote-2014-news/greens-eye-radical-change-days-before-election-6078465

    More corrupt media spreading dirty filthy politics.
    A long list now…
    Sabin
    O’Sullivan
    Savage
    Murphy
    Roughan
    Henry
    Dann
    Christie
    Hosking
    Garner
    Williams
    Smith
    Plunket

    The enablers of Dirty Politics.

    • David H 18.1

      You forgot:
      Armstrong
      Gower
      Espiner

    • Pete 18.2

      I will say that for all the flak the ODT gets, its political reporters – Hamish McNeilly and Dene Mackenzie serve its readership well. And its editorial line: save neurosurgery at Dunedin hospital, save Hillside, save Invermay point to a more measured – if highly parochial – outlook. It’s a pity that it publishes content from the Herald, but that was due to the end of the NZPA.

      The fact that it serves two blue seats: Waitaki and Clutha-Southland, and two red ones in Dunedin may have something to do with it.

  19. outofbed 19

    #DirtyPolitics now has chapters available free online! To read about Simon Lusk & Jason Ede, head to http://dirtypoliticsnz.com for the flipbook

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    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    4 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    4 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    5 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    7 days ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago

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