web analytics

Godwin’s flaw?

Written By: - Date published: 8:27 am, June 26th, 2018 - 213 comments
Categories: Donald Trump, International, internet, us politics - Tags: , ,

Recent events have led to some very interesting developments and comments that I thought I’d briefly go over.

The first is that comparisons to Nazism online have gotten so much more fraught than before that one of Mike Godwin’s clarifications on his eponymous axiom has made the LA times.

For those that don’t remember, “Godwin’s Law” is:

“As an online discussion continues, the probability of a comparison to Hitler or to Nazis approaches one.”

While the noted internet luminary does still stand by the law in its original form despite suggestions it can shut down discussion, (mostly due to application of the law as the “end of a thread” by moderators rather than its original formulation, given above) he has interesting and nuanced discussion that is both cautious of even today’s comparisons to Nazism, and appropriately scathing of the Trump Administration’s attempts to separate families. I highly suggest reading the article in full, as while it is very balanced and cautious, it achieves that balance without letting anyone off the hook, like the best sort of factual writing.

Also worth noting is that President Trump is now coming for judges in his perennial fight against immigrants:

The most troubling and revealing part of this is the tail end of his original comment about how appointing more immigration judges might result in corruption: “Now can you imagine the graft that must take place?” This indicates Trump’s real opinion of the judiciary: that they’re there to be bribed, not to make objective decisions. I’m torn between assuming he must be promoting cynicism in the branch that acts as his biggest check and balance, or that maybe this is reflective of his past tactics trying to deal with judges.

This is in response to suggestions that he should expand the number of immigration judges to simply avoid having to detain immigrants for long periods of time- a thoroughly reasonable suggestion if your purpose in immigration enforcement was actually to enforce the law, and not to punish people for political purposes. (ironically, so-called “illegal” immigration, which is more rightly referred to as “improper entry” to the United States, is responsible for a lot of the country’s core economic activity, and is the only reason its unreasonably low minimum wages are in any way sustainable. It’s also not a criminal but rather a civil violation at the moment)

Finally, there’s the case of one Sarah Huckabee-Sanders, who was recently ejected from a restaurant for her participation in the Trump Administration.

There have been a number of interesting discussions on the morality or respectability of shunning people with extreme political views from polite society. Republicans in the US seem to be treating this as the first pebble in a slippery slope, and as usual blowing any perceived slight way out of proportion.

It was also very interesting to see Andrew Geddis noting the legal implications of similar actions in New Zealand might be less benign:

https://twitter.com/acgeddis/status/1010621722574245888

(Naturally, not everyone was in agreement with Geddis’ reading of the law, of course) There’s also other takes in New Zealand that are a bit less charitable:

There’s some small validity to saying that it’s uncivil to seat a woman at a restaurant because she works for an administration you dislike, if dislike was all there is to it. But there’s also a lot more validity, in my opinion, to the position that shunning people who violate human rights from polite society is the cost of their own decidedly uncivil behaviour to others, and a perfectly valid form of protest in a democracy.

It’s worth remembering that in New Zealand we didn’t arrest a woman for throwing a sex toy at a politician, so we clearly have a sense that protest is allowed to be offensive, but so-called “sensible centrists” in the USA have a long history with privileging civility over protest, sadly. We should do better. Civility doesn’t mean letting people get away with breaking our democratic norms and hurting other people. It means behaving in a way that reflects our civic duties- which arguably, in a modern democracy, obliges us to protest the intolerable, however we choose to do so.

213 comments on “Godwin’s flaw?”

  1. Chris T 1

    As much as I dislike Trump, the people making comparisons between him and Hitler need grow the f up, and grab a bit of perspective

    • Matthew Whitehead 1.1

      He is literally using the same tactics against undocumented immigrants that the Nazi Party used against jews, creating propaganda where rare incidents of lawbreaking are treated as routine for the entire demographic, and using language that they are “infesting” the country and causing problems, when in fact labour provided by undocumented immigrants is the backbone of the economy in many critical areas of the US. He is sending people to detention camps and seperating families in them for no particularly pressing purpose, and with no particular effort to avoid doing so.

      I wouldn’t compare him with Hitler because I honestly think Hitler was smarter, but he is absolutely cribbing his playbook in certain areas, regardless of whether you think that makes him a neo-nazi or not, he is on record as saying there were good people on “both sides” in Charlottesville, for instance, and that other side that Trump was so keen on defending did contain self-identified neo-nazis.

      In other words, maybe grab a little more perspective yourself before dismissing accusations that Trump is acting like a Nazi- I am almost always against such comparisons, but Trump has now earned them. I was careful to stick to the term “authoritarian” before his election, but he’s thoroughly past that sort of courtesy.

      • Baba Yaga 1.1.1

        ‘Undocumented’ is a euphemism for illegal. The US has every right to control it’s borders, and I’m sure the American people are well aware of the disasters resulting from the open borders policies in Europe.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2

      By all means, compare these shitheads to Nazis. Again and again.

      Mike Godwin.

      • Matthew Whitehead 1.2.1

        Worth noting is that Godwin in his article doesn’t claim to be an arbiter on the axiom named after him, just its originator. He would be the first one to say we should draw our own conclusions about when to make comparisons to Nazis, rather than arguing from authority by quoting him.

        Your point is totally valid, but we should focus on why comparing the Trump Administration to nazis is much more valid than doing so to, say, the Key/English government, which while it was bad in its own way, largely didn’t subject us to an authoritarian cult of personality.

        My general premises are:
        1) Trump’s government is actually authoritarian in its approach. Even George W. Bush didn’t want extra-legal deference to a conservative leader, he just wanted to legalize human rights abuses and accrue more power for the Presidency, and he was famously the inspiration for much of the action in the Star Wars prequels, for instance.
        2) The administration is encroaching authoritarian thought onto a notionally democratic nation.
        3) It is using the same policy strategies for some of the same stated aims as the Nazi Party did.
        4) It is defending and allying itself with white nationalists.
        5) It is using similar gaslighting strategies to propagandize and deflect criticism, it’s just not quite as nuanced with them in some ways, and less brazen for now in others because the takeover is less mature.
        6) People get confused about how authoritarianism comes about. They think it is all at once, rather than with a “strong leader” testing the waters slowly, dipping their toes in and only moving forward when they don’t get too strong a reaction from their own supporters. Trump is absolutely holding to the pattern.

        • Macro 1.2.1.1

          Matthew I totally agree with all you say here but would also add that Trump is now flying in the face of all previous US administrations in his withdrawal of the US from the UN Human Rights Council. The United States now joins Iran, North Korea and Eritrea as the only countries that refuse to participate in the council’s meetings and deliberations.
          Furthermore the tweet wrt to the immediate return of those improperly entering the US flies in the face of International Law wrt to the Rights of Refugees and asylum seekers.

          Non-refoulement
          The core norm of international refugee law is the principle of non-refoulement according to which no “state shall expel or return (” refouler “) a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where his life or freedom would be threatened on account of his race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion.”35 This principle has found entry36 and has been developed in international human rights law. It is nowadays a norm of customary international law.37 Not only refugees, for whom the state of refuge has recognized a risk of persecution in the country of asylum, but also asylum-seekers benefit from the duty of non-refoulement, since their claim might be founded.38 In its jurisprudence, the Committee developed a concept of non-refoulement obligations under the ICCPR.

          http://www.unhcr.org/research/working/4552f0d82/protecting-refugees-asylum-seekers-under-international-covenant-civil-political.html

          This principle is a fundamental part of the The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1966 (ICCPR) which is one of the seven universal human rights treaties to which the US is a signatory.

          If TRump is to continue this approach in abrogation of Fundamental Human Rights he drags the US into the realm of a pariah state.

      • Richard@Downsouth 1.2.2

        to Quote Mike Godwin:

        View post on imgur.com

    • adam 1.3

      A steaming cup of perspective.

      Yeah trump is more like 1933 Hitler rather than 1945 Hitler. But the reality is you can’t do a direct comparison, the US empire in 2018 is a different beast.

      But fascism has a few fundamental tenets which this administration does seem to be doing a good job of tick boxing.

      Extreme right wing – check
      Opportunistic nationalism – check
      Militaristic – check
      Machismo – check
      Attacks on Intellectuals – check
      Militias – check

      • Matthew Whitehead 1.3.1

        Also worth noting:

        • Attacks on the press.
        • Accusing opponents of being criminal or traitors without evidence.
        • Insinuation that valid legal remedies against the administration are corrupt or “unfair.”
        • Attempts to steal elections despite a lack of popular support, although this is a long-standing Republican goal.
        • Integration of corporations with government- that one’s been checked off for decades.
        • Jingoistic integration of national pride and militarism- as above, decades gone.
        • Sense of victimization by foreign actors
        • Sense of victimization by “traitors” working for the opposition party
        • White supremacy

        Nobody’s saying the outcomes will be the same, the targets the same, or the leaders are the same. What people are saying is that all the warning bells you should be looking at for people trying to pull off a modern twist on nazism are ringing in the USA right now.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 1.3.1.1

          The National Party isn’t as far down the slope as the GOP.

          Opportunistic nationalism – check
          Militaristic – arguable. The rhetoric doesn’t quite match the budget commitment
          Machismo – check
          Attacks on Intellectuals – check
          Militias – none that I know of although authoritarian centrist political violence certainly exists here
          Attacks on the press – check, cf: Dirty Politics
          Accusing opponents of being criminal or traitors without evidence – check
          Insinuation that valid legal remedies against the administration are corrupt or “unfair.” – arguable
          Attempts to steal elections despite a lack of popular support – do you count Simon Lusk?
          Integration of corporations with government – Thompson & Clark, also see Lusk and “a lucrative business career”
          Jingoistic integration of national pride and militarism – minimal as yet
          Sense of victimization by foreign actors – Key and daesh
          Sense of victimization by “traitors” working for the opposition party – Hager was labelled a traitor, no?
          White supremacy – endemic in all our institutions

          You forgot demonisation of outgroups. Check.

          • Matthew Whitehead 1.3.1.1.1

            I figured White Supremacy encompassed the victimization of outgroups, but YMMV.

            Not sure I agree with all of your conclusions there, especially as my “attacks on the press” point was more open challenging the overall veracity of the news, ie. “fake news” or “Lügenpresse.”

          • Gosman 1.3.1.1.2

            “…although authoritarian centrist political violence certainly exists here”

            Where does it exist here? Please link to a news story involving that sort of activity.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 1.3.1.1.2.1

              You live a very privileged life Gosman, if you cannot recall any of the threats made against eg: Golriz Ghahraman or Sue Bradford. Or perhaps you think rape culture isn’t political.

              PS: do your own Google searches you lazy slope-greaser.

              • Gosman

                Oh right. You’ve essentially redefined the term “authoritarian centrist political violence” to satisfy your own biased view. Congrats on doing that.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Are you saying it isn’t political, or it isn’t violence, or it isn’t a manifestation of authoritarian centrism?

                  I gave you a range of examples (there are more), by the way. That you conflated them into one is revealing.

                  • Gosman

                    How is it a “manifestation of authoritarian centrism”?

                    The people making abusive comments to the likes of Ms Ghahraman or Ms Bradford are individuals doing so via the internet. That is the opposite of authoritarian centrism as far as I can tell.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Oh right. You’ve essentially redefined the term “authoritarian centrism” to satisfy your own biased view. Congrats on doing that.

                    • Gosman

                      What is YOUR definition of “authoritarian centrism” then?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I’m happy to use David Adler’s linked article as a guide. That’s why I linked to it. I hope this simple guide to the bleedin’ obvious can help you look less like a tool in future.

              • Chris T

                Who in National has made threats against Golriz Ghahraman?

                Or Bradford?

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Is that the claim I made? No. I said “authoritarian centrist political violence certainly exists here”.

                  If you want an example of direct National Party involvement you need look no further than Mr. Simon Pleasants.

                  • Chris T

                    Going by that theory every country that has online trolls means

                    “authoritarian centrist political violence certainly exists” there

                    I hate to tell you this, but every country has online trolls

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      When those trolls are fed and watered by the Minister of Justice, however, you just got caught making a false equivalence.

                • Matthew Whitehead

                  Depends if you’re talking MPs, members, or supporters.

                  If you’re talking supporters, a lot of people aligned with National attacked Bradford, Turei, and/or Ghahraman, and there was no effort to rein them in.

                  • Chris T

                    That depends on your definition of attacked.

                    If it includes criticising than yes you are right

                    But the claim was “threatened” which means “violence” so that is a pretty moot point

                    And you seem to be (hopefully not conveniently) that 2 Green MPs got turfed for criticising Turei and there plenty of Labour MPs doing it as well

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      And you seem to be (hopefully not conveniently) that 2 Green MPs got turfed for criticising Turei and there plenty of Labour MPs doing it as well

                      That is not why they got turfed out of the Green Party. They got turfed out for bringing the party into disrepute by not following the agreed consensus.

                    • Matthew Whitehead

                      I meant harassment, not critique. DTB has already corrected you that those MPs were in trouble for a related, but different reason than their disagreement with Turei- they had attempted to remove a co-leader through actions that were absolutely incompatible with them representing the Green Party. It is a point of principle that we don’t do coups in the fashion other parties do, and it was a dark moment that those two tried- even if their faction had had the numbers, they were wrong to make a play against a sitting co-leader in that fashion. The correct way is to either resign in protest or to campaign for a no confidence vote at the next AGM. (we vote on confidence in co-leaders every AGM anyway)

                  • Gosman

                    Rein them in how?

                    • Matthew Whitehead

                      Simply telling them to stop and that their comments do not reflect the values of the National Party/that specific MP would have been sufficient IMO. It’s not something I’d expect for your odd loony who charges in alone against your political enemies, but when it’s a persistent campaign of harassment, it’s time for leaders to step up and be better than their followers as soon as they hear about it, IMO. Of course, that’s probably expecting a bit much from National, given they don’t like to campaign positively. *shrug*

                      That said, I would also like Labour to do it a bit more than they do already, too. Unlike National I can actually recall Labour MPs acting like leaders and shutting down problematic discussions, so they’re certainly not as bad, but they could do with living up to Jacinda’s rhetoric on kindness a little more, IMO.

                  • Baba Yaga

                    leaving Bradford aside, are you saying its wrong to criticise someone for benefit fraud? Or embellishing their CV?

      • Bill 1.3.2

        Many of those checklisted items apply to the cultures and governments of liberal democracies that most people would say act as bastions against fascism. (I’ve gone through them with the UK, Italy, France in mind) For my part, I think there’s a mis-comprehension that fascism comes from outwith liberalism (hence the “bastion against”)

        Historically, liberalism has accommodated and promoted fascism (the accommodation of Spain and Portugal during and post WW2, the promotion of Pinochet and a clatter of others)

        It’s not very useful to take a punt on some arbitrary defining point where we might reasonably say that liberalism in any particular country has slipped over into fascism by way of comparison to previous expressions of fascism. Fascism and liberalism aren’t separate. They exist on a continuum. Surely that’s all we need to understand?

        All that Trump does is built upon groundwork laid by his predecessors. Politicians on both sides of the isle keep voting to give him extra presidential powers. (New powers of surveillance for example) What Trump does by way of his blunt or unsophisticated tweets and announcements is lay bare the actual face of liberalism as it exists, and has existed, in the states.

        • adam 1.3.2.1

          Could not agree more.

          But sometimes, it takes a list to get people thinking.

          • Matthew Whitehead 1.3.2.1.1

            You should both probably consider those items we listed above more like a “here are possible indicators of fraud” list. (except replace “fraud” with “fascism”)

            One item is almost certainly not a case of fascism. Several items is suspicious, but you may not require too much to dismiss the need to investigate. Every single item looking like it’s true means you’ve almost certainly got yourself a neo-nazi or authoritarian regime.

            We may be missing things. We may have been overly broad with our wording of what we’ve included. But these are classic warning signs of authoritarianism that political scientists talk about all the time.

            • Bill 1.3.2.1.1.1

              This whole thing about where does liberalism end and fascism begin…it’s all very Ship of Theseus, don’t you think Matthew?

    • Daveosaurus 1.4

      The Trumpsters are setting. up. concentration. camps. for. children. on. American. soil.

      Fuck your civility.

  2. One Anonymous Bloke 2

    It’s worth reading the whole thread, but this tweet by David Roberts sums it up:

    WaPo editors say that accepting incivility (gasp) is a “slippery slope.” But that gets it exactly wrong. WE ARE ALREADY ON THE SLIPPERY SLOPE. It’s a slope that leads to illiberalism, violence, & collapse. It’s a slope greased [by] accommodation & civility.

    If kids don’t eat in peace, you don’t eat in peace.

    It’s heartening that US citizens are standing up against these nazis, and make no mistake, where the GOP has shown the way, elements in the National Party will surely follow. Across the ditch, Peter Dutton eats in peace. When push comes to shove, which example will Kiwis follow?

  3. Matthew Whitehead 3

    Apparently Marianne Elliot and I are creepily on the same page about civility, so if you liked my signoff, she expands on that same thought in this thread: https://twitter.com/zenpeacekeeper/status/1011321179947261952

    • Chris 3.1

      Not sure about “Political incivility can be required in a democracy & essential to resistance.” Surely more accurate is to say that political incivility is in some cases synonymous with doing nothing.

  4. Gosman 4

    You think it is okay to refuse service to someone because you find what they do morally repugnant do you?

    How is this different to a Cake shop owner refusing to bake a Wedding cake for a Gay couple?

    • Andre 4.1

      “Wilkinson also told the Post this crucial point — that she did what she did because Sanders was a public official and that she has regular customers who are politically conservative and has no problem serving them. Fantasies of separate restaurants for Democrats and Republicans are just that: fantasies.

      Wilkinson acted to punish a political official for a specific set of severe wrongs, not to harm an average customer whose political views she happened to disagree with. A slippery slope to politically segregated dining, this is not.”

      From an opinion piece with part of it devoted to exploring that question:

      https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/6/25/17499036/sarah-sanders-red-hen-restaurant-civility

    • One Anonymous Bloke 4.2

      Yes! Because being gay is exactly like imprisoning children, eh Gosman. Thanks for pointing out that totally valid comparison.

      Whatever would straight white men do without you to help us look like shitheads?

    • Matthew Whitehead 4.3

      Yes, I think refusing to do business with people you don’t think treat others ethically is absolutely the morally correct thing to do.

      It is different because it isn’t based on discrimination- for instance, if someone happened to mention voting for Trump, I wouldn’t necessarily say they deserve to be boycotted, because they might not have known what they were getting. (to blindly boycott them would be discriminatory, in my view, and arguably so for any party supporter, as opposed to people actually enthusiastically collaborating) But taking a considered view that someone’s actions are so heinous that they need to be shunned from polite society is an action with long precedent among democratic societies, and it is a natural outgrowth from freedom of association and the right to refuse service.

      I would also note that Huckabee-Sanders isn’t the only one being refused service, either, although all the tales so far I’ve heard have been targetting women in the adiministration. I hope people willing to deny service are also keeping track of prominent men working for Trump, too.

      • Gosman 4.3.1

        It isn’t different. The people who refuse to serve Gay people think they are morally repugnant (I disagree with their views but acknowledge they have their valid reasons to think that). The owner of the restaurant that refused to serve Ms Sanders also thought what she was part of was morally repugnant. You are trying to argue that one view is actually morally repugnant while the other isn’t. The trouble with that is you end up imposing YOUR version of morality on others.

        • Matthew Whitehead 4.3.1.1

          No, I am happy for them to have a different morality. Where I draw the line is treating people like they’re not people. That includes kidnapping people’s children and adopting them out, all before they’ve even been convicted of breaking the law in any fashion.

          If I wasn’t happy for people with different partisan beliefs than me to exist, to have the same rights, etc… then why would I be on record as being annoyed at the disenfranchisement of NZ voters for NZ First and the Conservative parties, especially when I am here right now pointing out that I think some of the things they believe are ingredients to a dangerous ideology?

          Because I support pluralism, and believe there is a line between just being disagreeable and being a legitimate threat to democracy that no NZ party has yet crossed.

          • ropata 4.3.1.1.1

            So you think it’s ok to hound a cake maker out of business because he refused to obey the dictates of compelled speech. in the name of “pluralism”

            what a crock

            • One Anonymous Bloke 4.3.1.1.1.1

              Masterpiece Cake Shop is still very much in business. Also, I don’t think Matthew said that.

              • Matthew Whitehead

                Two for two. All I said was that you can support boycotting Huckabee-Sanders without also supporting confectioners discriminating against people in same-sex relationships.

            • Baba Yaga 4.3.1.1.1.2

              Yes the tolerance of the left is a very limited beast.

          • Draco T Bastard 4.3.1.1.2

            No, I am happy for them to have a different morality.

            Which is actually a major problem itself. There really isn’t any more than one morality and accepting the false case that there is allows things like the present US administration and the previous National government to exist.

            • Matthew Whitehead 4.3.1.1.2.1

              There are absolutely differing personal value systems, which form the basis of morality. I’m not saying some of them aren’t wrong in my opinion, just that I personally don’t care to try and force my opinions on people, I’d rather convince them through democratic debate and application of superior policy in government.

              For instance, by saying that denying queer people their human rights is stupid and bigoted, but so is enabling authoritarians to kidnap children.

              • Draco T Bastard

                There are absolutely differing personal value systems, which form the basis of morality.

                Personal value systems are not a viable way to determine morality. That way lies the totally debunked Moral Relativity.

                If we want an actual moral system then we need to use logic.

                • Matthew Whitehead

                  Oh don’t try and Phil 101 me DTB, I’ve been to that class too.

                  Moral relativity is saying things can’t be wrong or right because of differing personal values and belief structures.

                  What I was implying is that persecuting or attempting to legislate against everyday people for having those differing personal values, where they are normal, non human-rights-violating ones, is wrong, not that we can’t try to make imperfect human attempts at absolute statements about what the trends and patterns in our slightly different personal values imply for an objective yet socially conscious morality.

                  There are worlds of difference between those two. It’s the difference between “the colour red isn’t logically possible,” which you clearly think I said, and “using the colour red should still be legal, even if overall I’d prefer we didn’t use it,” which was what I was going for.

                  Accepting that there is a relative component to our perceptions of morality is not itself the full argument for moral relativity, and you should know that if you understand the premise of that argument correctly, especially as the existence of certain commonalities between those perceptions (eg. a vast majority of people agree murder is, of itself, wrong) is one of the counter-arguments to moral relativity.

                  • McFlock

                    I did that class, too, but that’s a much better explanation than I could come up with here. Nicely constructed.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Moral relativity is saying things can’t be wrong or right because of differing personal values and belief structures.

                    Which is what you said here:

                    No, I am happy for them to have a different morality.

                    And which you then contradicted yourself when you said:

                    non human-rights-violating ones

                    Which implies an absolute morality based upon the UDHR.

                    What I was implying is that persecuting or attempting to legislate against everyday people for having those differing personal values, where they are normal, non human-rights-violating ones, is wrong…

                    The law needs to allow moral action and make immoral actions illegal. The way to set those laws is through logic. What the law shouldn’t try to do is force people to have the same opinion. After all, it’s only when they act upon those opinions and thus against the law that it becomes a problem.

                    It’s the difference between “the colour red isn’t logically possible,” which you clearly think I said, and “using the colour red should still be legal, even if overall I’d prefer we didn’t use it,” which was what I was going for.

                    No, I think you said that all moralities are valid which is both wrong and logically impossible.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.3.1.2

          The people who refuse to serve Gay people think they are morally repugnant

          And they’d be wrong. No logic around would support such a position.

          The owner of the restaurant that refused to serve Ms Sanders also thought what she was part of was morally repugnant.

          And in that she is correct. What the US Administration is presently doing is morally repugnant and completely unethical and thus should not be supported.

          You are trying to argue that one view is actually morally repugnant while the other isn’t.

          That’s because one is and one isn’t. Morality isn’t something you get to pick and choose. It’s something that comes from a valid logical process.

          The trouble with that is you end up imposing YOUR version of morality on others.

          That only happens if we follow the RWNJ practice of moral relativism which is bunk. Morality is something that can be supported logically. Thinking that gay people are morally repugnant can’t be.

          • Gosman 4.3.1.2.1

            I’m sorry Draco but when it comes to moral arguments there are very little in the way of absolutes. Many religious people believe that certain behaviour is immoral and they should not condone such behaviour. You might like to disagree with them on this but there is no sure fire logical way you could convince them that their ideas are wrong and your views are correct.

            • Draco T Bastard 4.3.1.2.1.1

              Many religious people believe that certain behaviour is immoral and they should not condone such behaviour.

              If they can back it up by logic then all good. It’s when they can’t and they still try to force that immorality upon others that it becomes a problem.

              You might like to disagree with them on this but there is no sure fire logical way you could convince them that their ideas are wrong and your views are correct.

              Although true that doesn’t make them or their beliefs right.

    • Arthur Freeman 4.4

      People chose to be liars.

    • Arthur 4.5

      People chose to be liars.

      • Gosman 4.5.1

        I’m pretty sure Ms Sanders doesn’t think she is a liar. Regardless you are imposing your own moral judgement on other people’s behaviour. In my view that is your right as it should be your right to decide not to engage with these people including in a commercial setting. But if you accept you have the right to do that you also accept that other have the same right to do so for behaviour you yourself may not find morally reprehensible.

        • Gabby 4.5.1.1

          I’m pretty sure she knows she’s a liar and doesn’t care gozzer.

          • Wensleydale 4.5.1.1.1

            She’s a liar for the cause, and she’s totally down with that. The war being waged inside her head to justify what she does with what she professes to believe must be epic. Wall to wall blood and body parts I’m guessing.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 4.6

      How is it different?

      First they came for the gays, and now they’re coming after the children. So that’s one way it’s different.

      • Chris T 4.6.1

        Who is coming for the gays?

        Some bloke from a cake shop?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 4.6.1.1

          I was thinking more of conversion “therapists”, and -subsequently – that African Americans probably have a stronger claim to be at the front of the line.

          • Chris T 4.6.1.1.1

            “I was thinking more of conversion “therapists””

            Ahh

            Tbf they have been around for centuries, let alone since Trump turned up

            • One Anonymous Bloke 4.6.1.1.1.1

              No-one’s making the claim that Trump represents a new phenomenon. Quite the opposite.

    • Cemetery Jones 4.7

      Imagine if the left had prevailed in that case.

      “Hi, is that the Islamic cake shop? I want a Mohammed cartoon cake, please.

      Yes, the Democrats have convinced the Supreme Court you have to.”

  5. Ad 5

    US Supreme Court has confirmed you don’t have to serve a gay person’s wedding by baking a cake. Omg.

    It’s all on.

    Nothing ‘civil’ from the left about Occupy, BLM, or #metoo. Among others.

    New Zealand can afford its politesse and getting excited about being called Pinkos, but it’s 34 years since we saw any unrest.

    The US has a whole bunch more at stake. Their contest is

    “from ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
    Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.”

    Meaning: racism.

    It’s not European 1930s fascism.
    It’s militarized immigration with a really precise intelligence state, and it is seeing the decline not only of the global left but of open democracy itself.

    • Gosman 5.1

      If you agree that the restaurant owner had the right not to serve Ms Sanders then you also support the right not to serve gay people.

      • Ad 5.1.1

        The Supreme Court yesterday threw out a case about a florist about a claim that there had been deliberate discrimination against a same-sex couple for refusing to make flower arrangements for their wedding.

        There’s a lot more to come yet on commercial expression.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.2

        Some more Trump officials just got kicked out of another restaurant, Gosman. Why don’t you bake them a cake.

      • Matthew Whitehead 5.1.3

        You can say that ’till you’re red in the face, Gosman, but it’s simply not true. There is a big difference between taking away someone’s human rights through discrimination, and refusing to do business with someone who helps to take away people’s human rights as part of a senior government appointment.

        The relevant comparator is not queer people wanting wedding cakes- it would be more like a kiwi business owner who opposed the TPP refused to serve David Parker.

        • Bill 5.1.3.1

          Any business owner can refuse service to any potential customer, and doesn’t have to provide them with a reason.

          If they give a reason, and that reason contravenes human rights legislation around discrimination (say), then they’re up for grabs.

          • David Mac 5.1.3.1.1

            I agree Bill, contrary to their wishes, I refuse to do business with some people.

            They nearly always come back with “Why, is it because I’m ……………….?”

            My response to that question is crucial and can be the difference between the end of the matter or having charges leveled against me.

            I say “I’m sorry I’m not at liberty to share that information, cheerio.”

            Frustrating for the other party but enables me to manage risk and choose who I work for.

        • Gosman 5.1.3.2

          That is merely your own interpretation. As Ad has pointed out the Supreme Court in the US looks like it disagrees with your view and supports mine.

          • Matthew Whitehead 5.1.3.2.1

            I don’t particularly give much credence to the views of the US Supreme Court, they interest me more in how they (usually detrimentally) affect the application of the law in the US.

            And yes, that is my interpretation. I am pointing out that you are claiming something as established fact that is very much a point of debate.

            • Gosman 5.1.3.2.1.1

              Exactly. Your views are very much debatable. It is certainly not a given in the way you suggest it is.

              • Matthew Whitehead

                Um, you were the one asserting that you’d sorted the debate, not me.

          • Draco T Bastard 5.1.3.2.2

            That is merely your own interpretation.

            No, that is the reality. A reality that you will refuse to accept as it goes against your beliefs.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.4

        No. The two are definitely different.

        A gay couple affects no one else.
        A supporter of Trump affects everyone else and, for the majority of people, that effect will be negative.

        • McFlock 5.1.4.1

          Yeah it’s the gossie classic: find a single similar facet shared by two issues, use that to pretend the entire gemstones are identical, ignore the key differences between the two.

        • Andy 5.1.4.2

          Your claim that a supporter of Trump will be negative for most isn’t backed up by (a) the results of the 2016 election or (b) the economic recovery happening in the USA right now which is having beneficial effects across most demographics

          • Draco T Bastard 5.1.4.2.1

            A) He actually lost the 2016 election
            B) I haven’t seen any evidence so far that what he’s doing is what’s causing the US’s economic recovery. High tariffs is certainly what allowed the development of the US economy in the first place though.
            C) Such tactics cause damage even if it’s only discovered later.

            • Andy 5.1.4.2.1.1

              ” he actually lost the 2016 election”

              Which is why he is President, I presume
              Even based on the somewhat dubious assertion that he lost the popular vote (given the large number of accusations of vote rigging before the election) the election is not determined by the popular vote. It is determined by the Electoral College, which was set up so that the large states didn’t have an overly strong bias in the overall result.

              Similarly, Labour “won” the NZ election even though they got far fewer seats than National. I accept the results for what they are, even if I don’t like the current coalition.
              I don’t claim that National “won” the election.

              • Draco T Bastard

                It is determined by the Electoral College, which was set up so that the large states didn’t have an overly strong bias in the overall result.

                That may have been the reason at the time but:

                But it’s not just that certain states are over-represented. Specific segments of the population get to wield far more power under the Electoral College than they would otherwise. States identified as Republican strongholds, for example, are more over-represented, on average, than states of any other partisan bent.

                I can see why you support this antiquated and heavily biased system.

                Similarly, Labour “won” the NZ election even though they got far fewer seats than National.

                Ah, you’re continuing with that lie. Typical of a RWNJ.

                Labour didn’t win and National lost. We have a coalition government of three parties that represent over 50% of those who voted. National failed to be part of that coalition.

                • McFlock

                  FWIW You got distracted too easily. Andy was blowing hard about “most” and backing it with the 2016 results. So the popular vote doesn’t support the “most” claim, and they drag you into the electoral college argument.

                • Andy

                  “I can see why you support this antiquated and heavily biased system.”

                  I don’t “support it”. I am merely describing how it works.

                  I don’t live in the USA. I don’t vote for US politicians. I merely have an armchair view of things.

                  What is it with you guys that you have to have a position on everything?

                  What is your position on Guatemala’s electoral system, for example?

                  For or against? I really need to know

              • Anne

                …based on the somewhat dubious assertion that he lost the popular vote (given the large number of accusations of vote rigging before the election)…

                What a load of piffle! Like the Clinton email allegations which were proven by the FBI to be false (they found nothing other than a few “careless” comments) so were the accusations of vote rigging. The Chump and his mates have a massive record of lies, lies and more lies. And every day that passes Chump adds to the ever growing list.

                What a gullible fool you are.

                • Andy

                  Gullible fool? I saw the videos of the voting machines changing results BEFORE the election results

                  As for your lot claiming that Trump lost the election, I really am a little lost for words.

                  It is possible to lose a game of tennis yet still get more games than your opponent.

                  Anyway, in your mind the Rapists Wife aka Clinton aka the Most Corrupt Woman in US politics ever, apparently “won” the election.

                  Whatever. I’m no fan of any of them

            • Richard McGrath 5.1.4.2.1.2

              No, Trump won the 2016 election by 304 to 227. Popular vote don’t mean jack shit.

      • dukeofurl 5.1.5

        Gosman
        The Wedding Cake Shop case was more nuanced than that.

        The owners were happy to sell the gay couple one of their standard pre-made cakes but refused to ‘create’ a personalised cake which required them to sort of endorse gay marriage. That related to wording and design elements.

        It never was an issue of only ‘refusing to serve to serve a gay couple’

        A similar issue here might be a tattoo parlour that was happy to do one of its standard designs but might refuse to do a design of the clients with nazi symbolism

        • Andy 5.1.5.1

          One could think of many cases where religious freedom impinges on others.

          For example the Muslim checkout operator who won’t server pork products or alcohol. The solution is fairly easy in this case – go to another checkout. In the case of Sarah Sanders, she won’t be back at the “liberal” restaurant, so the solution is easy too.

          The religious case is a bit more cut and dry though. Randomly segregating people on perceived views which that person may or may not have isn’t the same as a woman demanding that a Muslim barber cuts her hair.

          The US Democrats are good at segregation though so it’ll be just like the good old days for them

  6. ianmac 6

    I heard part of a radio interview with Katherine I think, where the guest illustrated Trump actions as being like Hansel and Grettle. They are living an awful life with many bad things when suddenly the focus is on the wicked witch. She becomes the reason for the problems that the kids face. So the story produces a happy outcome by attacking the wicked witch rather than the awful life.
    Hence all our problems in USA are because of those wicked immigrants. Get it? How unscrupulous of D Trump.

    • Matthew Whitehead 6.1

      Yes, that’s very illustrative of Trump’s political strategy, and it is classic stuff that the Nazi government did with jews, homosexuals, political dissenters, people of colour, and other “undesirables.”

      • Andy 6.1.1

        The Left own Identity Politics. Sorry if Trump stole your playbook

        • Matthew Whitehead 6.1.1.1

          That is a ridiculous comparison.

          • Andy 6.1.1.1.1

            Others have said that Trump is copying the playbook of Alinsky. Is that ridiculous too?

            It does rather seem that Mr Trump is the reaction that the public had to decades of divisive identity politics. Not ideal, but you reap what you sow

    • Bill 6.2

      I think that interview (it was on Kim Hill) was pointing to Trump being treated as the wicked witch, and that perspective being “swapped in” to explain away and effectively ignore all the problems besetting Hansel and Gretel.

      The problem with the US is Trump (apparently). No it’s not. The problem with the US runs much deeper and broader than a mere figure head and rides the front of a long historical context.

      • Matthew Whitehead 6.2.1

        That is an absolutely valid point. You don’t get to authoritarianism in one foul swoop. The problem with Trump is that he’s the final step, not that he’s to blame for everything- there is absolutely no way you get a Trump without a W Bush or a Reagan.

        It’s also fair to say that a US centre-right consensus that has ignored popular concerns in many different parts of the political landscape enabled Trump, especially rampant wealth inequality. The democrats being terrible at their job is arguably just as large a contributory factor to his rise as the recent history of Republicanism in the US.

        That said, none of this changes that Trump’s authoritarianism is also a problem that needs to be addressed- it just puts it in the correct context of “give the people genuine left-wing populism, or you’re get authoritarian right-wing populism.”

    • Lucy 6.3

      So you are saying that the issue isn’t the wicked witch aka Trump the issue is the parents who abandoned their children in the forest which led to the witched witch aka people losing their jobs, the military complex, billionaire’s sucking up the countries wealth, the banks for their predatory practices, racism of the institutions aka the morass that is the US! I would agree that Trump is not the cause he is a symptom of the problems facing the US and the world

      • Bill 6.3.1

        As I recall, the interviewee was saying that living in an isolated dark wood in poverty and with no food was the problem. The wicked witch is just a convenient repository for, or proxy for immediate problems – that can then be ignored.

        So Trump is the wicked witch. Get rid of Trump and la-la land blossoms. Except, kind of overlooked, is the fact that la-la land threw up Trump in the first place.

        • ianmac 6.3.1.1

          Agree Bill with your first para but not where you say that Trump is the Wicked Witch. No. Trump is blaming the Wicked Immigrants for all the problems. No jobs? Crime? Lets blame those pesky immigrants.

          • Bill 6.3.1.1.1

            Yes, Trump is scapegoating. That’s hardly novel behaviour for a politician. And as you know, I’d put more or less all of them in the same boat, and with the same “farewell” sentiments in mind as the boat was pushed away from dry land.

            My response to your comment was more about trying to clear up the point Kim Hills interviewee was trying to make with her “wicked witch” analogy.

    • Gabby 6.4

      Still, probably best to give a wide birth to cannibals who live in cake houses iany.

      • ianmac 6.4.1

        Then Gabby what will I do about that nasty Wolf who is giving my friends the Piglets and a Red Hoody wench hard times?

        • marty mars 6.4.1.1

          RRH looked very young in most of the illustrations – I suppose she may be a prostitute as you say.

          • McFlock 6.4.1.1.1

            Either way, there’s at least one wolf-proof brick house that a good socialist piggy will share with the others.

  7. Sanctuary 7

    The meta of this incident is it shows how dangerously polarised the United States now is politically.

    We are seeing the end game of the Nixonian “southern strategy” of whipping up white identity politics to flip the south, and the re-emergence of the racist Confederate mind. – and the wider personalisation of the debate that mirrors the 1850s and 1860s USA.

    https://www.fairobserver.com/region/north_america/donald-trump-resurrected-confederate-worldview-88232/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caning_of_Charles_Sumner

    in 1861, the end result of all this was civil war.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1

      Is civil war a valid response to Nazism?

      • Stuart Munro 7.1.1

        Bonhoeffer seems to have come to that conclusion.

      • Matthew Whitehead 7.1.2

        Well, it was viewed as a valid response to slavery back in the day, and it was a valid reason for a world war, so I think it’s not unreasonable to warn that these are the sorts of things wars are fought over if they’re not resolved through (relatively) peaceful political rapprochement.

        While the parts of US culture we don’t like do line up with some attitudes that are Southern, they’re present in the North as well, just more insidiously so. The real issue is that reconstruction was never really finished as a project due to various electoral shenanigans, so the South has never really healed culturally from the civil war, (and wasn’t coupled with economic uplift like the Marshall Plan did in western Germany) and therefore many view reconstruction as an act of authoritarian violence enforced on them rather than an attempt to save a nation from the evils of white supremacy.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1.2.1

          Civil war is terrible indeed. I hope the USA can avoid it. The Nazis are vastly outnumbered but would still inflict great losses; they already have.

  8. Wayne 8

    The comparison of Trump to Hitler is made daily by those who oppose him. So I guess on that basis it is easy to justify all sorts of action against him, his officials and his supporters.
    But Trump has done nothing that would compare to Erdagon’s actions in Turkey (wholesale war against the Turkish Kurds, mass arrests, etc).
    However I guess we expect more from the US. Trump’s use of Twitter seems so unpresidential, and full of simplistic solutions.
    But so far there is no effective political response to him.
    To what extent is he just a passing aberration, or has he wrought a fundamental political change in the way politics is done?
    Hard to say.
    We saw a little of excessive reactions against Key, which became known as Key Derrangement Syndrome. But that was confined to hardcore activists (and Internet Party supporters). It never really got into the mainstream.
    With Trump it is different. He comes across as so much of a narcissist, that it is hard to take him seriously. But that also makes it easier to demonise him. Any good things he does are almost instantly offset by some crazy policy.
    NZ will just have to ride it out. To my mind there is no sense in the NZ government calling him out on all the things he does. There are plenty in the US who will do that.
    Jacinda seems to have leant that lesson following the Manus Island issue, of which we hear no more from her. Usually our friends and partners don’t like to be told how to run their countries.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1

      on that basis it is easy to justify all sorts of action against him, his officials and his supporters

      In your opinion, is the comparison valid, and if so, what actions are justifiable and/or unjustifiable?

      Are there perhaps some very fine people on both sides, in your view?

      • Wayne 8.1.1

        OAB

        I think the comparison to Hitler is grossly overdone. Trump is more like Berlusconi.

        I personally think not serving Sanders-Huckabee went too far. The reaction in the US indicates that. In the food service industry (or any other customer service) you should just accept your customers as they come, without giving them a lecture or refusing to serve them. That is, if you say you are open to the public then that is what you are.

        Elsewhere in this thread there is reference to not serving the likes of Titford and Capill. Easier to understand if people refuse in that circumstance. But even then it is debatable. If everyone choses not to serve serious criminals, having served their sentence, where does it end?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1.1.1

          Ah, sorry, I just spotted the initial misrepresentation in your argument. The comparison is not between Trump and Hitler, but between Trump’s behaviour and policies and nazism.

          So I’ll ask you again: is the comparison valid, and if so, what actions are justifiable and/or unjustifiable?

          Are there perhaps some very fine people on both sides, in your view?

          After all, you’d happily do business/have a normal diplomatic relationship with Berlusconi, eh.

          • Wayne 8.1.1.1.1

            New Zealand did have normal business and diplomatic relationships with Berlusconi’s Italy.

            As indeed we do with Saudi Arabia and China, both of which are self evidently more repressive than the US.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1.1.1.1.1

              is the comparison valid, and if so, what actions are justifiable and/or unjustifiable?

              • Andy

                I would like to keep discussions civil and open even if we disagree strongly on certain points. If we shut people out because of who they work for, those avenues become closed off

    • Bill 8.2

      To what extent is he just a passing aberration, or has he wrought a fundamental political change in the way politics is done?

      He’s a product of what went before. So, not an aberration. And surely questions around what politics is, and its mechanisms, is far more important than questions about mere style – “how politics is done”?

      • Wayne 8.2.1

        Bill

        So much of what Trump does is political theatre, and presumably intended to be so. He seems to like the fact that he infuriates his opponents.

        The tweets in particular seem to do that. For instance most countries deport illegal immigrants without the benefit of a court hearing. Turn up at Auckland Airport without the right visas, and you are likely to be on the next return flight out (unless you make a credible claim for refugee status). No court hearing.

        But the way Trump puts it in his tweet makes it sound like the US has abandoned the rule of law, even though what he is proposing is virtually standard practice anyway.

        Trump presumably knows this, but it gets his opponents running after a false hare.

        So what is substance and what is theatre?

        Quite a lot of what he does (in policy terms) has been done many times before by previous presidents. But none of them boasted about it in the way he does.

        Immigration and trade wars for instance. In both cases he deliberately uses inflammatory rhetoric. He wants a trade war, he wants immigrants to be seen as invaders.

        Obama had the issue of unaccompanied minors crossing the border in 2104, but he never made it seem like an existential threat. But his policy was actually quite tough.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 8.2.1.1

          Kidnapping children en masse is theatre. He’s good at it. Amazing what a centrist can blithely wave away.

          • Bill 8.2.1.1.1

            Pretty sure I just read of a woman in Australia who is about to be deported and separated from her son as a result. Also thinking that many of the Windrush cases, as well as a clatter of other deportation cases in the UK, would fall into a similar ball park (separating families and loved ones).

            What the Trump admin is doing is fcking despicable. But then, what other liberal democracies are doing, though the particulars or scale may be different, isn’t really any less despicable.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 8.2.1.1.1.1

              Is that how it’s going to become normal? One case, or even Windrush-scale callous incompetence, equated to forty* two thousand deliberate kidnappings. We’re just taking your child for a bath.

              “Darling. they’re just taking you for a bath”.

              “Liebling. Sie nehmen dich nur zum Baden mit”.

              “Querido. solo te llevan a bañarte”.

              I love you. Say it with lamp-posts.

              *they planned for 40k.

              • Bill

                Is that how it’s going to become normal?

                No. I think it is normal (not necessarily the particulars, but broadly speaking) and has been for a number of years. And away from the immigration front, states have been stealing children since whenever, Roma being the most obvious, but the children of indigenous peoples, or in the case of English children sent to Australia post WW2, the working class. Call it class war or just institutional callousness or whatever, but we’ve been happily, or for the most part, ignoring it.

                Trump provides a service by not bothering with the mask of gentility that his predecessors were wont to grab, and so ‘allows’ us to see the basic nature of liberalism that we’ve been habitually turning a blind eye to.

                Trump didn’t come out of the blue (he was “spawned” by liberalism) and he isn’t doing a damned thing that isn’t a traceable continuation of policies from before his time in office. He may be taking some things in a different direction than others would’ve taken, but he can only venture down paths made possible by what has gone before, and if you doubt that, then maybe ask why it is that both Republicans and Democrats who condemn him on particulars or for being a noxious expression of humanity, nevertheless use their votes to give him more power.

    • Matthew Whitehead 8.3

      Trump not yet being an Erdogan doesn’t mean he isn’t on the same path. I am really tired of lazy right-wing defences of Trump that do not have critical analysis of the way authoritarianism works underlying them. It is a gradual process at first prone to sudden acceleration, and saying someone is currently not a Hitler is a bit like saying people should all be allowed to smoke in a fireworks factory, because hey, it hasn’t yet caused a fire!

      I’m fine with saying that Trump’s demeanor and narcissism make him easier to criticize, but that doesn’t excuse him from actually doing the things that political scientists warned he might do back in 2016 as a cautionary tale and were roundly dismissed and laughed at. Remember when people were telling us there’s no way he was serious about his border wall because it was impractical and he would drop it and be more Presidential after the election? Because I sure do.

      Trump has been the ultimate case of right-wing shifting goalposts for unacceptable behaviour. I think a lot less of you Wayne that you’re willing to engage in such rationalization.

      • Anne 8.3.1

        I think a lot less of you Wayne that you’re willing to engage in such rationalization.

        Same here. I’ve given Wayne credit in the past for showing a creditable level of sophisticated thinking. Its amazing how otherwise intelligent people can kid themselves to the point of total blindness. I presume they tell themselves that the ‘unthinkable’ can’t possibly happen any more. Look what happened last time Wayne… people turned a blind eye to it all until one day they woke up and it was too late.

        One day Wayne you will be forced to eat humble pie.

        • Wayne 8.3.1.1

          Anne
          I wasn’t defending Trump or his policies.
          I was trying to analyse how he operates in theatre of politics. He is very different to what we are used to in long established democracies.
          I also think the Hitler comparison is invalid. There are many articles which hypothesised doing all sorts of things to stop him before 1938/39. Thinking that Trump is Hitler makes the same sot of thing conceivable.
          But the US in 2018 is not Germany of the thirties. Way too many checks and balances.

          • Stuart Munro 8.3.1.1.1

            Hitler was something different – Alastair Cook heard him several times:

            “A small ambulance standing by seemed [an] unnecessary come-on, but at the end of the twenty-minute speech I heard, two or three women had fainted, for the good neurological reason that he could hypnotize even a small audience with omens of a dire future. He did this not with the hysterical bawling which was all we saw in the newsreels before and throughout the Second World War but with a style of the most artful variation of mood, from tenderness to whimsy to outrage. He convinced me, for one, that we had had it.”

            But Trump is the fascist demagogue of our time, to be defeated just as surely as our greatest generation defeated his predecessor.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 8.3.1.1.2

            …the same sort of thing conceivable.

            The non-privileged sectors of US society have been living with ‘the conceivable’ for some considerable time now. What ‘civility’ are they afforded?

  9. Jimmy 9

    I’m not a Trump supporter but I think the owner of the Red Hen was really stupid to ask her to leave. My restaurant will serve National, Labour, Greens, NZF etc supporters…hell even vegetarians!

    • Bill 9.1

      It’s the owners prerogative to refuse service, but it was silly to provide a reason as to why she was refusing service.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.2

      What about Alan Titford or Graham Capill?

      • Jimmy 9.2.1

        Yes both of them and Rolf Harris and Jimmy Saville if he was still here. Doesn’t mean I have to like them or agree with them or even really want their continued custom, and no their food would not be spat on.

        • McFlock 9.2.1.1

          Wow. Frankly I’d hope I’d have the courage to tell the lot of them to fuck off to some other place.

          • Jimmy 9.2.1.1.1

            Professionalism would be maintained at all times even to disliked customers.

            • McFlock 9.2.1.1.1.1

              We’re not talking “disliked”. You basically said you’d cater a pedophilia convention. Professional obligations never overrule human obligations. You’re a restaurateur not a lawyer. Sitting at your table isn’t an essential part of preserving human rights and preventing an irreversible miscarriage of justice.

    • Matthew Whitehead 9.3

      Sure, and you are absolutely entitled to make that decision yourself. I think the owner did the right thing, and is being heaped with unnecessary scorn.

  10. Draco T Bastard 10

    From the John Hart thread: The paradox of tolerance

    • Gosman 10.1

      Hence why we should restrict Muslims

      [In the future I would strongly suggest against adopting two contradictory positions in the same thread. It is a strong suggestion you’re simply trolling and thus is begging for moderation. -MjW]

      • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1.1

        Some Muslims behave like cake shop owners, therefore we should restrict all cake shop owners. We should also restrict members of ACT, and everybody else too.

        Asinine much.

        • Gosman 10.1.1.1

          I think you missed my point. If you are not going to tolerate intolerance then it leave a lot of room for intolerance. I can make a pretty persuasive case that Muslims are intolerant. Would you like it if I decided to use Draco’s argument against tolerating intolerance against Muslims?

          • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1.1.1.1

            Don’t flatter yourself Gosman. You can no more make a case that Muslims are intolerant than you can Christians:

            But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.

            Luke 19:27.

            Saith the Lord, and that’s why every Sunday I get murdered by a mob of angry bible-thumpers 🙄

            • Gosman 10.1.1.1.1.1

              If you want to make a case Christian’s are intolerant go for it. I’m focusing at this stage on the Muslims.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Yes, and you haven’t made a wet paper bag, let alone a case.

                • Gosman

                  Your case against the Christians consisted of a single Bible verse. Are you claiming that I can’t find at least one verse from the Quran supporting the view of intolerance from Muslims?

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    I wasn’t making a case against them. Just emphasising your failure to make a case for discrimination against people based on the books they read.

                    • Gosman

                      You made quite a compelling case against Christians though.

                    • Bewildered

                      OAB

                      You are an awfully smart bloke but you make the same mistake those with trump derangement syndrome do, you can’t fight hate with hate, the new testament will tell you that ( not that I am overly religious ) The tenor of most of your arguement albeit well crafted are tinged with hate Kim Kardashian worked out how to get something out of trump in regard to releasing that black women, She did not use hate filled hyperbole and Godwin arguement against him but a bit of respect and stroke the orange ones ego and what do you know the right result The nutty left need to change thier stratety to Trump taking him on head on ain’t working, They need to understand what do they really want and the devise the appropriate strategy to achieve the outcome and not disenfranchise half the population along the way with adding hate on hate

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      @Bewildered. Don’t go cap in hand to Trump begging for indulgences: get off your knees and suspend him from a lamp-post by his heels.

                      This isnt some normal petition to a benevolent government. “Oh please Sir, won’t you stop torturing children Sir?” We sent troops to Afghanistan for less.

                    • Bewildered []

                      Yep and your strategy is working a treat

                      The problem is that the elite left think they are representing the silent majority, the so called victims or even the working class even though in most cases they are just as removed from there so called constituency as their elite opponents Hate is just hate no matter where it comes from and never solves anything

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      So it’s hateful to say that torturing children is wrong, a crime against humanity. The Police marksman who shoots the would-be murderer does so out of hate. That self-defence and the defence of others is motivated by hate.

                      Your moral compass is broken.

                      Oh, and by the by, the deluge of disgust that followed the release of an eight minute audio tape of screaming children is the first thing that has seen this vicious centrist serial rapist back down.

                      His people are pledging allegiance and sharpening their guns. I’m picking he’ll be setting fire to a Reichstag real soon. Some careully chosen “terrorist” attacks. Something along those lines.

                      This isn’t the time for hate, it’s the time for cold steel and calculation.

                    • RedLogix

                      @OAB

                      Well yes … just as you no doubt might discriminate against people who read Mein Kampf and assiduously apply themselves to following the precepts therein … you can see that some ‘books’ matter.

                      We aren’t talking Thomas the Tank Engine here; religious scripture has across time deeply informed and shaped our value systems. And it’s entirely banal and negligent to simply dismiss all religious narrative as the more or less equivalently insignificant witterings of ‘sky fairies’. Self-evidently they are not, or we simply would not be having this conversation. The very real differences between the Islamic and Christian world-views are significant, have massive political import and worth discussing.

                      The biggest challenge is that most Westerners are simply not all that informed about Islam; we don’t understand the substantial ground we share in common, while simultaneously failing utterly to apprehend the critical differences. Worse still the Q’uran is an exceptionally difficult book for Westerners to grasp; for the most part it either baffles or repels us.

                      Nor do we have much grasp of the complex history of Islam and it’s even more difficult relationship with Europe. And even in the modern context, the multiple strands of Islam stray over a difficult landscape, much of which is quite alien, hostile even, to western sensibilities. Exercising discrimination could well be an entirely rationale response.

                      What is of course truly weird is this alliance between the Western radical left and a modern Islam which radically leans toward fundamentalism; two ideological systems that superficially appear to share little in common. Until at least you understand that both are utterly convinced of their moral completeness and totalitarian scope.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      most Westerners are simply not all that informed about Islam

                      I doubt this incomprehension has a worse effect upon society than say, run-of-the-mill privilege and prejudice. Lao Tsu observed that “religion enthralls generation after generation”. I posit that racism is a similarly pernicious habit.

                      That being so, it is vain and arrogant to conclude that we can reason with and thereby constrain the harm done by racists, Nazis, authoritarian centrists, call it what you will.

                      Our job is to pre-empt and otherwise resist them.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    @Gosman You made quite a compelling case against Christians though.

                    No, I didn’t. You just think it’s good because it’s all you’ve got in yours.

                    It’s a shit case: I cherry-picked a single verse (or whatever they’re called) as though it is the entire litany. To bring it to Earth, the murder of doctors by Christians is a crime, but it’s murder, not faith, that’s being prosecuted.

      • Matthew Whitehead 10.1.2

        Wait, so discrimination against gay people is a reason why we should oppose direct action against authoritarian human rights abuses in other contexts, but discrimination against Muslims is fine? Make up your mind.

        For context, the inherent discrimination in Islam is of a similar level to that in Christianity and Judaism. It’s just that practicioners are disproportionately people of colour and economically disadvantaged, and so are viewed as valid scapegoats for their social conservatism, which would otherwise probably have made them your best buddies.

        You’re lucky my internet went down this afternoon, or I would have been around to caution you that you were coming dangerously close to trolling- consider this your warning for future threads under my posts.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1

      Ouch 😆

      That said, as Clive James pointed out in Cultural Amnesia, cartoonists found an easy target in Hitler. And then he murdered them all.

      • Sabine 11.1.1

        yep, the dissidents, the communists, the socialists, the handicapped children, the sick children, the homosexuals, the jehova witnesses all ended up dead as well as the jewish european citizenry, the roma, the sinti and and and.

        Anyone is fair go, and the US will wake up to this revelation sooner then later.

  11. Ad 12

    Speaking of fascism purportedly growing in American soil, is anyone watching The Man In The High Castle?

  12. Sabine 13

    this is a good read, from a non white us american ( so as long as they still have the right to say something )

    https://www.theroot.com/%5Bobject%20Object%5D

    Quote: “According to the prevailing narrative expressed by citizens from across the political spectrum, ostracizing people because of their political beliefs is a slippery slope that could lead to business owners selectively choosing whom they will or won’t serve.

    I agree with those people. Republicans gotta eat, too. This country should not devolve into a place where our personal preferences become scarlet letters that determine how we navigate the world. I’m sure America would not allow that to happen in the land of the free.

    (Sidenote: This piece will refrain from mentioning the North Carolina bathroom law, the recent Supreme Court homophobic bakery decision, the Freedom Riders, sit-ins, Jim Crow, the NBA and Super Bowl champions disinvited from the White House, or the people elbowed in the throat at Donald Trump rallies.)

    But that’s not what happened here.

    Kirstjen Nielsen was not heckled for what she believes. Sarah Huckabee Sanders was not booted from the restaurant because of her politics. They were singled out because of things they actually did. And that is the difference.” Quote end.

    • Matthew Whitehead 13.1

      This is precisely the distinction I was making to Gosman up thread, btw. Good quote, thanks for sharing 🙂

  13. Observer Tokoroa 14

    What naughty Babies !

    The American people who bombed the heavens out of Japan, Vietnam, North Korea, Laos, Iraq – and crippled many other countries, are now being attacked by Babies.

    America really is the sick nation. Cruelty, Murder, Hatred, and Greed are its fundamentals and daily bread.

    The free world owes nothing to imperial America, or to any American. They each think they are God’s Gift. When in fact they seem mental to the bone marrow.

    Each decade they sink further into disgrace and denial. If you hate Harmony, but like destruction, bottled sugar, Greasy Fat, Obesity, drugs, worldwide pollution – become American.

  14. Siobhan 15

    The worst thing about Trump is he seems to have derailed almost all coverage of important Political and Economic fight back and conversation in the MSM and even Leftish media and Blogs both overseas and in NZ.

    Even here we have scant coverage or detailed discussion of everyday worker, beneficiaries and family battles, and certainly next to zero coverage of any overseas protests or political stands and shenanigans compared to endless raking over the coals of Trump and his destructive tendencies.
    Ironically, given the obsession with Trump, there is, in fact, no real talk about the actual lives of poorer or even average Americans, or even coverage of the reality for migrants under stay together policy (ie as with Obama, ankle bracelets and repatriation without acknowledgement of valid claims).

    Sure, Trump has let some ‘Genies out of the Bottle’, and its a sudden very visable deterioration in America’s moral code not seen since 9/11, but it will be interesting to see if the next President makes any real attempt to undo the damage or whether it will be the usual tinkering at the edges and glossing over how America is perceived.

    Certainly the Democrats can’t think Trump is too bad or Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi wouldn’t have voted to give him greater spying powers.

    The man could be vaporised tomorrow and The Centre Left would have little to offer other than “well at least we’re not Trump”.

    Unfortunately that seems to be all that’s on offer these days.

  15. Sabine 16

    and another good one on the civility debate

    https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/a21931194/sarah-huckabee-sanders-red-hen-civility/

    Quote” This debate is stupid. It’s also dangerously beside the point. SarahHuck is the lying mouthpiece of a lying regime that is one step away from simply hauling people off in trucks. That she was politely told to take her business elsewhere is a small step towards assigning public responsibility to public officials that enable a perilous brand of politics. There are bigger steps to be taken, but everyone in official Washington is too damn timid to do what really needs to be done about this band of pirates.

    So, Sarah, since I know it is hard for you to understand even short sentences, I’ll put it as briefly as I can: Take a hike.”Quote end

    • Bewildered 16.1

      Left wing hate plus right wing hate equals just more hate, both sides need to tske a chill pill as the silent majority just look on in dismay and disengage

      • Matthew Whitehead 16.1.1

        There is no left-wing hate here. The left are not suggesting we seperate people from families, or start widespread discrimination against Republicans, just that appaling actions merit real protest that might actually disrupt their lives a little.

        • RedLogix 16.1.1.1

          There is no left-wing hate here.

          My long experience ‘here’ informs me otherwise Matthew. Indeed it’s the underlying reason why I’ve scaled back my participation dramatically the past few years. (You can take pleasure in that if you wish, but I’m speaking to my experience, no-one else’s. ) It is of course expressed quite differently to the sort of ‘hate’ perpetrated by extreme right, but that doesn’t make it morally superior or politically effective, as Bewildered has concisely stated above.

          For the most part we like to pretend it doesn’t exist because it’s in such conflict with our professed values, but the denial wears thin after a while.

          • Matthew Whitehead 16.1.1.1.1

            Well if you’re gonna allude to personal anecdotes and then tag out, I can’t exactly speak to anything you’re saying, only say that I haven’t observed the phenomenon you’re talking about in public.

            I was thinking at an institutional level of policies, political groups, and political strategies. I think the fact that there are individuals on almost any given side in politics that will take things past all bounds of reason is a given, the question is whether they’re at the steering wheel or on the fringes. My experience so far is that they’re at the fringes in left-wing movements, but if your experience has genuinely differed I am very sorry to hear that.

            • RedLogix 16.1.1.1.1.1

              Most people only see what they expect to see, most of the time, so I’m not going to try and convince you of what you cannot see. But there is plenty of unwarranted belligerence and resentments swilling about the bilges of The Standard.

              It took me a long time to realise the left has no inherent ethical or moral superiority, over the right. We both have our fringe-dwellers who go too far.

              • Dennis Frank

                Human nature, eh. Can one transcend it? Sorry, deep philosophical question, wrong blog, consider it rhetorical!

                I like your exhibition of balanced overview here. I read The Moral Animal when it appeared in the nineties, think the evolutionists are getting some traction with deriving morality from nature (even if often overstated). Christians having lost moral authority during my lifetime, postmodernists having consistently signalled that they’re too stupid to make a contribution, we the people are left having to reinvent this wheel. We do it via blog discussions like this because intelligent discourse in groups no longer happens in physical proximity..

                • David Mac

                  I agree Dennis, I think that’s a beaut comment by Red L.

                  The internet. 20 years ago I’d have to guess what was on the minds of the people that contribute to this forum.

                  Intelligent discourse got supercharged…..as did the dumb stuff.

                  Trump’s tweeting continues to amaze me. It has a ‘The president popping over for a cup of tea and a chat’ flavour to it.

  16. Richard McGrath 17

    The Red Hen had every right to eject Sarah Sanders from their premises. They have the right to eject anyone, for any reason, because they own the property. Guests remain there with the permission of the owner(s), which can be revoked at any time. Whether that’s going to be good, bad or neutral for business, and the jobs of the employees there, is another matter, as the Red Hen will discover in due course.

    • Sabine 17.1

      I have a feeling that she will do fair business. Not the rightwingers and their enablers and such, but all the others – you know the liberals, the african americans, the mexicans , the people coming from shitholes, the women, the gay, the lesbians, the canadians etc etc.

      Sometimes following once conscience is good for business. 🙂

      • RedLogix 17.1.1

        No question it’s highly satisfying to watch a highly visible member of Trump’s staff encounter some personal blow-back like this. I can even appreciate the justification in the short-term.

        Longer term it would be a good deal less edifying to see this incident spread into general practise; restaurants and diners needing “No Dems” or “No Repugs” signs on the footpath outside.

        • McFlock 17.1.1.1

          Depends on how much more polarised things get.

          I’m actually more concerned about social segregation becoming re-entrenched than political segregation. The US really seems to be falling into (largely) an urban/rural schism that is becoming more and more hostile and violent, in addition to the social problems they already had.

        • Ad 17.1.1.2

          🙂

          From a guy who had plenty of experience not getting served in plenty of lunch bars, Martin Luther King gives a quick outline here of his praxis between love and resistance; non-resistance is a whole different thing to non-violent resistance:

          The trick for the left isn’t to follow the same fractal path of splitting that the hard right does. The left can’t afford it, and the Reverend knew that.

          The left will only win if it skillfully includes more and more small groups into larger groupings. That’s the thing called solidarity.

          Or, if you like, coalition government.

      • Andy 17.1.2

        You mean the African Americans that no have the lowest unemployment rate ever? I’m sure they’ll come flocking to a restaurant run by a bunch of white beta-manlets wearing pink hats

    • Matthew Whitehead 17.2

      You’ve gone a bit far past the mark here, Richard. The Red Hen do have a right to eject guests, but not for discriminatory reasons. That said, I don’t believe their ejection of Ms Huckabee-Sanders is discriminatory, based as it is on her actions on behalf of her employer, and the fact that those actions constitution collusion with some pretty extreme and unacceptable human rights violations against children, but “for any reason” is not legally correct even in the US.

  17. Observer Tokoroa 18

    Hi Siobhan

    Abraham Lincoln: on Democracy

    “Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth.”

    But Abraham did not count on the corruption of Greed that has become the blood and sinew of every American.

    So a true saying is:
    “Government of the poor, by the wealthy for the wealthy, shall not perish within America.”

    We, as well as the so called United Kingdom and other low wage limping nations, must not serve Capitalism. In fact, each nation must abolish capitalism – thereby establishing reasonable equality within a nation.

    In the year, Oct 25, 2017 over half of the jobs in America paid less than $18 hrly. Which is less than one would expect of a wealth laden USA. (Ref Washington Post).

    • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1

      If you aim at Capitalism your attack is easily evaded, for Capitalism is an ephemera, an ideal that exists only in textbooks.

      Aim instead at human rights and environmental abuses, corruption, and those who grease the slope.

      • Draco T Bastard 18.1.1

        Aim instead at human rights and environmental abuses, corruption, and those who grease the slope.

        QFT

  18. Nick 19

    I believe Trump is simple to work out. Trump is for Trump. Nothing else matters to him – racism, economics, politics, people etc, the subject matter is not important to him (he floats above it all and has no feelings or emotions, so he easily changes direction when needed) , it’s only based on whether his actions and words help him to become Trump the king of the world. That’s his one simple goal.

    • Matthew Whitehead 19.1

      That might be a key goal of his, but it’s not his only goal. He is also for white supremacy, something which even from his own point of view gains little for him personally now he’s president and ostensibly on top of the food chain.

      There’s also a good argument that he wants to break the law and use the presidency to have conflicts of interest that make him money because he was broke AF before he was elected. That may be true, as it’s practically certain at this point that he’s not as rich as he says he is.

      I believe Trump is a comprehensible political figure, but that doesn’t mean he’s a one-note character. He cares about things other than turning the US into an elected monarchy, but he certainly believes as President he should have more power than even the most greedy of Presidents have previously aspired to.

      • Dennis Frank 19.1.1

        “He is also for white supremacy”, asserting your personal opinion as if it were fact – never an effective way to make a political point. If Trump were ever to have validated it by issuing the statement “I believe the white race is supreme”, there’d be a consequent headline to prove you right, right?

        This whole authoritarian centrist thing morphing into nazism is mere paranoia. Putting Trump supporters into jackboots could give it credence – no sign of that happening. In fact the small fat leftist leader of North Korea still supplies us with the most exemplary displays of mass goose-stepping this side of Hitler, at his military rallies every year. Perhaps to remind us that Hitler began his political career as a left-wing agitator (and then applied the socialist tag to his german workers party). Yeah, gotta watch these leftists…

  19. Grafton Gully 20

    “That’s his one simple goal.” At 72 and with problematic cardiac health that’s a big ask.

    • Nick 20.1

      Apologies Ggull, I meant King of the World in his own mind and how he views the world, spelt ‘America’.
      Yes Matthew, he is a white racist but that is just a vehicle to money and power, which mean more to him… He will enslave anybody (just ask the Republican party) lol.

  20. peterlepaysan 21

    In all the hiss and roar about godwins law above did anyone notice the chump tweet that ended with “most children arrive without parents”

    Presumably these children are also the same actors that a a chump apologist referred to.

    I cannot recall anything in Hitler’s actions that resembled that apart from his blaming of jews, czechs, assorted slavs for alleged assorted malignance.

    chump blames children for immigration woes?

    hitler never stooped so low.

    • Sabine 21.1

      children were the first one to be gassed, shot, or had their heads bashed in.
      pretty teenaged girls often ended up in brothels.
      teenaged boys might be worked to death.
      blond babies with blue eyes often were given to ‘deserving ‘ parents.

      children were always separated from their parents on arrival at the death camps.

      Hitler stooped very very low and left the country buried under several millions of skeletons. A deed which to this day is still causing shame in Germany.

  21. Sabine 22

    Elisabeth Warren’s account of a her visit to a ‘processing centre’

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2018/6/26/1775524/-Here-s-what-I-saw-at-the-border

  22. Observer Tokoroa 23

    To : One Anonymous Bloke

    “Aim instead at human rights and environmental abuses, corruption, and those who grease the slope.”

    Yes I agree with your statement. We have been through a number of severe meltdowns constructed by the American Banks. None of whom have been held to account.

    We have only in the past week discovered that our Banks (Australian) have literally been stealing money off their Depositors. Nothing will happen to them.

    Money Money Money – is the disease. All Capitalists should have a strong light shone upon them for they are the Rotten in our world. We need to bring back Capital Punishment. If I may say so.

  23. Sabine 24

    This is a lovely find from 1934 New York times urging Jews to be civil to the Nazis.

    https://twitter.com/studentactivism/status/1007301941540655106/photo/1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.dailykos.com%2Fstory%2F2018%2F6%2F26%2F1775487%2F-Historian-Pulls-Up-NYTimes-Editorial-From-1934-Urging-Jews-Be-Civil-Towards-Nazis

    the whole thing is worth a read.
    I would link to the New York times archive but one needs a subscription and I can’t be bothered.

  24. corodale 25

    Interesting to see the Polish de-criminalising history (to district court, rather than high court), and getting on with life. Also updating Judge Appointment, sparking confusion in some EU lands.
    http://www.thenews.pl/1/9/Artykul/370269,Polish-MPs-vote-to-relax-disputed-antidefamation-law

    Note: Appointments in NZ:
    Judicial appointments to the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal and High Court are made by the Governor-General on the recommendation of the Attorney-General, who by convention receives advice from the Chief Justice and the Solicitor-General.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Still denying responsibility
    Stuff's story on NZDF's negligence around its Afghan firing ranges has produced a result, with a commitment from the Prime Minister for an urgent cleanup. But this doesn't mean NZDF is accepting responsibility for the deaths and injuries that have occured - they're still refusing compensation. Which given that the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 hours ago
  • A corrupt practice
    Last week RNZ broke the news on NZ First's mysterious "foundation" and its dodgy-looking loans. The arrangement seemed to be designed to evade the transparency requirements of the Electoral Act, by laundering donations. But now Stuff has acquired some of their financial records, and it gone from dodgy to outright ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    9 hours ago
  • Democracy “A Bit Bonkers” – Thoughts Inspired By Lizzie Marvelly’s Latest Co...
    Didn't See It Coming: NZ Herald columnist Lizzie Marvelly's latest column merits serious scrutiny because such a clear example of anti-democratic thinking is encountered only rarely on the pages of the daily press. Which is not to say that the elitism which lies at the heart of such social disparagement ...
    10 hours ago
  • Colombia: historic memory, massacres and the military
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Initially it was reported that in an aerial bombardment that took place on August 30th seven children were massacred; the figure then went up to eight and then on November 11th Noticias Uno reported that, according to people from the community in close proximity to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    13 hours ago
  • Corruption as usual
    Next year is an election year, and Labour needs money to fund its campaign. So naturally, they're selling access:Labour is charging wealthy business figures $1500-a-head to lunch with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at its annual conference later this month. [...] On the weekend beginning November 29th, around 800 delegates will ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Fairer rentals
    Yesterday the government announced its changes to tenancy laws, including an end to no-cause evictions, limits on rent increases, and anonyminity for tenants who defend their rights against bad landlords (sadly necessary because landlords are scum who maintain blacklists of "uppity" tenants). They're all good moves, and have resulted in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Another NZDF coverup
    In 2003 New Zealand sent a Provincial Reconstruction Team to Afghanistan to support America's doomed war there. While there, they conducted regular weapons practice on local firing ranges, littering the landscape with unexploded ammunition. These ranges weren't secure - they're on land used by locals for animal herding - so ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • A loss for the Greens
    Green MP Gareth Hughes has announced he will retire at the election. Its understandable - he's been there ten years, and wants to actually see his children grow up rather than miss it while drowning in the toxic parliamentary sewer. But his departure is also a huge loss for the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • New era for Ngāti Kuri and Auckland Museum
    Words and images by Jacqui Gibson Gone are Auckland Museum’s days of doing science using a museum-centric academic approach, after Māori land rights holders Ngāti Kuri gave the museum an ultimatum.
    Tom Trnski holding a fossilised whale tooth from the Far North.Aussie-born Head of Natural Sciences at Auckland Museum ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 day ago
  • Circling vultures: Why MediaWorks TV is really in trouble
    MediaWorks announced in October 2019 that it intended to sell off its struggling television business and cancel or cut back on several popular local programmes, including New Zealand Today, Married at First Sight New Zealand and 7 Days. Its radio and outdoor advertising arms are currently performing well, but MediaWorks’ ...
    Briefing PapersBy Peter Thompson
    2 days ago
  • Scary Opinium Poll
    Westminster voting intention:CON: 44% (+3)LAB: 28% (-1)LDEM: 14% (-1)BREX: 6% (-)via @OpiniumResearch, surveyed this weekChgs. w/ 08 Nov— Britain Elects (@britainelects) 16 November 2019 This, of course, doesn't look good.  Labour have been chucking big, headline grabbing policies left, right and centre ... Well, maybe not right.  Left, left ...
    2 days ago
  • A coward’s ploy.
    Some readers may remember that I mentioned last year that I was applying for NZ citizenship. I filled out the paperwork and had my original citizenship interview in February. Everything went well until they discovered that, because I had spent five months in the US in 2017, I had not ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 days ago
  • Left censorship and exclusion against gender-critical women: a Marxist critique
    by Deirdre O’Neill It is becoming quite acceptable for certain sections of the left to declare that people like me – women who are ‘gender critical’ – should not be allowed in leftist or anarchist spaces. Leaving aside the arrogance and implicit authoritarianism of this claim, its lack of critical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • “Uncertainty” can be better solved with a better grasp of life’s inherent complexities…
    There is an article in The Conversation, written by Jeremy P. Shapiro (Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University), about what he sees as the psychologically-based underpinnings of three main matters that seem to vex people all around the planet. The article is titled “The Thinking ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    3 days ago
  • Citizens vs the Rogue Deep State
    . .   Blogger Martyn Bradbury has won his case against unreasonable search and surveillance against the NZ Police; and subsequent Police attempts to produce evidence in secrecy, in a closed Court. His case highlights a disturbing growing trend in Aotearoa New Zealand for State power to be used against ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Massey University’s free speech policy double-plus-good
    The Committee of Disobedient Women has intercepted an email from Dr Emma Eejut, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Massey University to the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Jan Thomas. Dear Jan, Thank you for your courageous move.  I think 10 pages of blether** should tie any of the students game enough to try holding ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Unacceptable
    That's the only response to the findings of the Ombudsman's investigation into LGOIMA practices at the Christchurch City Council:My investigation identified serious concerns about the Council’s leadership and culture, and its commitment to openness and transparency. In particular, Council staff raised concerns with me about various methods employed by some ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • There is what corruption looks like
    NZ First seems to be nakedly trying to enrich itself from public office:A powerful New Zealand First figure helped establish a forestry company that then pushed for money from two key funding streams controlled by a New Zealand First Minister. An RNZ investigation has found Brian Henry, lawyer for Winston ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Escape from Manus Island
    Behrouz Boochani is an award winning author and journalist. He is also a refugee, who for the past six years has been detained in Australia's offshore gulag on Manus Island, and in Papua New Guinea. But last night, with the cooperation of the WORD Christchurch festival and Amnesty International, he ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • When World’s Collide.
    Different Strokes: If a multicultural immigration policy imposes no obligation on immigrant communities to acknowledge and ultimately embrace their host nation’s most cherished traditions and values, then how is that nation to prevent itself from being reduced to a collection of inward-looking and self-replicating ethnic and cultural enclaves?THE COALITION GOVERNMENT’S ...
    4 days ago
  • Could There Be Method In Massey University’s Madness?
    Protective Zone: Reading the rules and guidelines released by Massey University, it is impossible to avoid the conclusion that its governing body considers the whole concept of free speech a disruptive threat to the orderly imparting of orthodox academic knowledge.IN TRUE ORWELLIAN fashion, Massey University has announced its commitment to ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: We need more trees, not less
    Farmers held a hate-march on Parliament today, complete with MAGA hats, gun-nut signs, and gendered insults. While supposedly about a grab-bag of issues - including, weirdly, mental health - it was clear that the protest was about one thing, and one thing only: climate change. And specifically, forestry "destroying" rural ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The IGIS annual report: Dead letters and secret law
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security released their annual report today, and I've been busy reading through it. In amongst the usual review of what they've been doing all year, there's a few interesting bits. For example, a discussion on "agency retention and disposal of information", which points out that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A referendum on bigotry
    The End of Life Choice Bill passed its third reading last night, 69 - 51. Thanks to a compromise with NZ First - which looks to have been necessary on the final numbers - the commencement of the bill will be subject to a referendum. Given the ugliness of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Political parties and GMOs: we all need to move on
    Recently more than 150 post-graduate students and young scientists presented an open letter to the Green Party via The Spinoff, encouraging them to reconsider their position on genetic modification. Their target is tackling climate change issues.[1] Can any party continue to be dismissive about genetic modification (GM) contributing to ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    5 days ago
  • Class, Identity Politics and Transgender Ideology
    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    1 week ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    1 week ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    1 week ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    1 week ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    1 week ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    1 week ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    1 week ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Too Late To Change Capitalism’s Flightpath?
    Collision Course? In conditions of ideological white-out, the international bankers’ “Woop-Woop! Pull Up!” warning may have come too late to save global capitalism.WHAT DOES IT MEAN when international bankers are more willing to embrace radical solutions than our politicians and their electors? At both the International Monetary Fund and the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whooping cough vaccine works well despite its imperfections
    Pertussis (whooping cough) is a conundrum. It is a disease that was described hundreds of years ago and the bacteria that causes it (Bordetella pertussis) isolated in 1906. We have had vaccines for about 80 years but this disease is defiant in the face of human immunity. I wanted to ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Passed
    The Zero Carbon Bill has just passed its third reading, uanimously. In the end, National supported it - but we all know they'll turn around and gut it the moment they regain power. Meanwhile, I guess ACT's David Seymour didn't even bother to show up. I am on record as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Retailing of vaping products – New NZ Research
    Dr Lindsay Robertson, Dr Jerram Bateman, Professor Janet Hoek Members of the public health community hold divergent views on how access to vaping products or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) products should be arranged. Some believe ENDS should be as widely available as smoked tobacco and argue for liberal ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Justice for Bomber
    When the Police were trying to cover up for the National Party over Dirty Politics, they went all-in with their abuses of power. They illegally search Nicky Hager's house, violating his journalistic privilege and invading his privacy. They unlawfully acquired Hager's bank records. They did the same to left-wing blogger ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Britain’s climate tyranny was unlawful
    Last month, in response to a wave of protests by Extinction Rebellion, the British government purported to ban their protests from the whole of London. It was a significant interference with the freedoms of expression and assembly, and another sign of the country's decline into tyranny. But now, a court ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • More crime from the spies
    Last year, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security reported on significant problems with the intelligence warrant system. While they were unwilling to declare any warrant "irregular" (meaning unlawful) due to the recent law change, they were also not willing to give the system a clean bill of health. Now, they've ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Vaccination, compulsion, and paternalism for the lower orders
    The National Party has come out in support of encouraging greater vaccination uptake. But it sure isn’t the way I’d do it. National’s suggested docking the benefits of those on benefit whose kids aren’t keeping up with their vaccinations. Some in National have suggested extending that to payments under Working ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Protests Rage On: But Slogans Are Not Plans.
    Feeding The Flames: It is simply not enough to demand an end to “corruption”, or “inequality”, or the overbearing influence of the authorities in Beijing. These are just “lowest common denominator” demands: the sort of slogans that pull people onto the streets. They are not a plan.WHERE’S THE PLAN? Across ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 11,000 employed under Labour
    The labour market statistics have been released, and unemployment has risen to 4.2%. There are 115,000 unemployed - 11,000 fewer than when Labour took office. In that time the minimum wage has gone up by $2 an hour, which shows that the right's fears about increases causing unemployment are simply ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Boycott this democratic fraud
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has called for submissions on Andrew Little's tyrannical Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill. Normally I encourage participation in the democratic process. I am not doing so in this case. Instead, I encourage all of you to boycott this submissions process, and to post ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Mars is cold despite an atmosphere of mostly carbon dioxide
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz If tiny concentrations of carbon dioxide can hold enough heat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Ban private jets
    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago

  • New Zealand’s key assets are not for sale: national interest test delivered
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries Today the Government announced the delivery of the promise to protect New Zealand interests by applying a new National Interest Test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. This further strengthening of the Overseas Investment Act will ...
    5 hours ago
  • National interest test added to protect New Zealanders’ interests
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high-risk assets to overseas buyers. Under current Overseas Investment Act (OIA) rules, assets such as ports and airports, telecommunications infrastructure, electricity and ...
    6 hours ago
  • Electoral law breach allegations
    Rt Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First Allegations raised this morning by Stuff Limited / Fairfax concern a party matter but I am confident that New Zealand First has operated within electoral laws, now and for the last 27 years. Declarable donations were declared to the Electoral Commission. Our ...
    6 hours ago
  • Wayne Brown hits back at critics: Ports of Auckland has to move
    The chairman of the Upper North Island Supply Chain Strategy (UNISCS) working group, Wayne Brown, has hit back at critics of his group’s recommendations to relocate the Ports of Auckland cargo operations to Whangarei’s deepwater port of Northport. The working group's recommendation to close Auckland waterfront to all but cruise ...
    1 day ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    1 day ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    5 days ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    6 days ago
  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: 2,000 teachers in two years
    We began the week by commemorating the New Zealand Wars and celebrating a major increase in the number of teachers. Then, we were busy supporting offenders into work and getting our rail back on track after years of underinvestment. And that's just the start! ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Winning an election one conversation at a time
    In October I was sworn in as the Mayor of Lower Hutt. It’s the privilege of my life to serve Hutt people as their Mayor. There is something really special to be able to serve the community where I was raised, and where I live.   ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Boosting border security with electronic travel authority – now over 500,000 issued
    We’ve improved border security with the NZeTA, New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority, which helps us to screen travellers for border and immigration risks off-shore before they travel to New Zealand. It was launched in August and became mandatory on 1 October 2019. More than 500,000 NZeTAs have been issued since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Plan of action to protect seabirds
    A proposed national plan of action to reduce the number of seabirds caught in fisheries is being circulated for public feedback. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage say New Zealand is a global centre of seabird diversity with about 145 species in our waters. It has more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • National interest test added to overseas investment rules
    The Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. Associate Finance Minister David Parker said under current Overseas Investment Act rules, assets such as ports and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • New housing part of support for Kaumātua
    The Government is building special housing to accommodate one of Aotearoa’s greatest taonga- our kaumātua, says the Minister for Māori Development, Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Speaking at a National Kaumātua Service Providers Conference in Rotorua today, the Minister reinforced the importance kaumātua play in maintaining and passing on mātauranga Māori, knowledge, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Forestry helps prisoners into jobs
    Eleven men from a pilot forestry training programme for prisoners in Northland now have full time jobs or job offers upon release, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis and Forestry Minister Shane Jones announced today. The ‘release to work’ programme was a collaboration between Te Uru Rākau and the Department of Corrections, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Reform of public service a step closer
    Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins today introduced into Parliament a Bill that will make it easier for the public service to tackle the biggest challenges facing Governments. The Bill represents the most significant change in the public service in 30 years. The State Sector Act 1988 will be repealed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Donations scheme to relieve pressure on families
    The families of more than 416,000 students will be better off next year as their schools have signed up to the Government’s donations scheme, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. The scheme will see almost $62.5 million in additional Government funding go to schools nationwide next year. “I’m really pleased ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Further support for Samoan measles outbreak
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced further support as the Government of Samoa responds to a serious measles outbreak. “New Zealand will deploy a further 18 vaccination nurses, bringing the total to 30 working in Samoa over the next four weeks,” Mr Peters said. “A New Zealand Medical Assistance ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the Child Poverty Action Group 2019 Summit
      Fa’atalofa atu, malo e lelei, Kia ora koutou katoa Thank you to the Child Poverty Action Group for asking me to be here today to provide an update on some of the things that have been happening across my the social development portfolio.  Can I firstly acknowledge the vast ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Annual Conference
    ***Please check against delivery*** Good morning everyone. It is a pleasure to be with you this morning to open this year’s New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Conference and AGM. Firstly, thank you Dr Alan Jackson, NZTR Chair for your introduction. And let us acknowledge also: The NZTR Board; Dean McKenzie, Chair ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Fairer rules for tenants and landlords
    The Government has delivered on its promise to the over one million New Zealanders who now rent to make it fairer and more secure, Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Kris Faafoi has announced today. Both renters and landlords will benefit from the suite of practical changes to the Residential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Two decades of marine protection celebrated at Te Tapuwae o Rongokako in Tairawhiti
    A marine conservation milestone - the 20th anniversary of the establishment of Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve - is being celebrated today at a community event in Tairāwhiti/East Coast attended by the Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “The creation of this marine reserve in November 1999 was a game ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Food industry asked to step up fight against obesity
         The Government is asking the food industry to step up work to tackle obesity including reducing sugar, fat and salt in their products, better information for consumers, and tighter restrictions on advertising to children. Health Minister David Clark and Food Safety Minister Damien O’Connor have responded to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Modern emergency care for Queenstown area
    ew, modern emergency department and outpatient facilities at Queenstown’s Lakes District Hospital mean better emergency care for the growing tourist mecca’s visitors and locals, says Health Minister David Clark. Today Dr Clark officially opened the hospital’s redeveloped Emergency Department and Outpatient facilities. The new facilities include: •    An extended Emergency Department ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Contraception important for New Zealanders
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter says today’s release of sexual and reproductive health data reinforces the significance of the Government’s commitment to providing free or very low-cost contraception. The Ministry of Health today published statistics from the Ministry of Health’s 2014/15 Health Survey. “It is important people can make ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ medical staff and measles vaccines going to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced that at the request of the Samoan Government, New Zealand will be providing further support to Samoa as it faces a worsening measles outbreak. “In response to a request from the people of Samoa, New Zealand is providing 3000 measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Disability Action Plan 2019 – 2023
    “The new Disability Action Plan 2019–2023 moves us towards the inclusive and accessible New Zealand that this government has committed to,” Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today.  “The Action Plan was designed by disabled people, their family and supporters, the disability sector and government agencies. It will ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Joint Statement – Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting
    Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting 14 November 2019 Joint Statement 1. Defence Ministers Ron Mark and Dr Ng Eng Hen today conducted their third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting in Singapore. 2. Building on the Enhanced Partnership signed between both countries in May this year, this annual meeting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Sexual Violence Legislation Bill has its first reading
    A Bill to improve the court system’s response to sexual violence has passed its first reading in Parliament today. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Sexual Violence Legislation Bill will reduce the trauma sexual violence complainants experience in court, while maintaining defendants’ fundamental rights and making sure the trial process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Streamlined business invoicing a step closer
    Streamlined payment practices are a step closer for Kiwi businesses with the formal launch of New Zealand’s e-Invoicing framework. Small Business Minister Stuart Nash says the government has now established the structure to enable automated and direct data exchange between the accounting systems of buyers and sellers. “The move to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More frontline biosecurity officers protecting NZ
    Another 51 quarantine officers and four new biosecurity detector dog teams will help protect New Zealand from invasive pests and diseases this summer, says Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “The Government is delivering on its commitment to strengthen New Zealand’s biosecurity system and support our valuable primary sector “New Zealand’s flora, fauna ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ space economy worth $1.69 billion
    A new report has found New Zealand’s space sector contributed $1.69 billion to the economy in the last financial year and employs 12,000 people, Minister for Economic Development Phil Twyford announced today. The report by Deloitte was commissioned by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and shows New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Chair for Royal Commission into Abuse
    Judge Coral Shaw has been appointed as the new Chair of the Royal Commission into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-based Institutions, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. "Judge Shaw, who is currently one of the inquiry commissioners, is extremely well qualified for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Better mental health facilities for Palmerston North
    The Government has confirmed its third major mental health facility upgrade since the Budget, this time at Palmerston North Hospital. The Prime Minister and Health Minister today visited MidCentral DHB to announce that $30 million has been allocated to upgrade its acute mental health facility. It follows earlier announcements in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Bowel Screening hits halfway point
    The roll out of the National Bowel Screening Programme has reached the halfway mark, with 10 out of 20 District Health Boards now part of the programme. MidCentral DHB, which covers Palmerston North, Manawatu and surrounding districts, this week became the latest to DHB to offer free bowel screening to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More vaccines for meningococcal disease
    The Government welcomes PHARMAC’s decision to fund a vaccine to protect young people from meningococcal disease from 1 December this year. “Meningococcal disease is a serious threat which people at higher risk should be protected from,” says Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter. “The combined pharmaceutical budget was increased by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Fisheries innovation projects supported
    Groups involved with innovative fisheries research projects are encouraged to apply for government support in the latest funding round from the Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures programme. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash says the SFF Futures funding is designed to be flexible enough to support small or large projects across a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government fixes culturally arranged marriage visa issue
    The Government has fixed an issue affecting how Immigration New Zealand has processed visa applications for culturally arranged marriages, which will now see a consistent process applied which ensures people with legitimate arranged marriages can visit New Zealand while also preventing any rorting of the system. Earlier this year Immigration ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Extension for Royal Commission into Mosque attacks
    The Royal Commission into the Attacks on Christchurch Mosques will report back on 30 April 2020 to give it more time to hear submissions and consider information, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. The Royal Commission was originally scheduled to report back to Government by 10 December 2019. “There has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Terrorism and Trade on agenda as Foreign Minister visits the United States
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington DC today to attend a ministerial meeting focused on defeating ISIS, and to continue pursuing New Zealand’s trade opportunities. Mr Peters will participate in a meeting of Foreign and Defence Ministers from key countries contributing to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Hoiho get extra support alongside 168 community conservation groups backing nature
    The recently crowned Bird of the Year, the hoiho/yellow eyed penguin, is getting a much needed helping hand alongside more than 168 other community conservation projects announced Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage today. 168 community conservation projects throughout New Zealand are benefiting from $8 million in government grants, including $500,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New safety measures for modified pistols
    Controls on assault rifles and semi-automatic firearms are to be broadened to include some types of pistols, under changes to a bill currently making its way through Parliament. Police Minister Stuart Nash has tabled a Supplementary Order Paper to the Arms Legislation Bill, which is currently before a Select Committee ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Minister of Defence to visit Singapore and Thailand
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark will travel to Singapore today to conduct a counterpart visit and to co-chair the third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting with his counterpart, Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen. “Singapore is one of our most important defence partners in the region, and our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Future secured for Salisbury School
    Nelson’s Salisbury School is to be rebuilt, creating a modern and suitable learning environment for students at the residential special school, Education Minister Chris Hipkins and Associate Education Minister Tracey Martin announced today. The school for girls aged 8-15, in Richmond, was earmarked for closure by National until the process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Resource management reform options released
    The panel undertaking a comprehensive review of the Resource Management Act has identified the main issues to be addressed and options for reform and is calling for feedback to inform its final report.  In July the Government announced the comprehensive review of the resource management system, including the RMA - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission established
    An important safety valve has been added to New Zealand’s criminal justice system with the third reading of the Criminal Cases Review Commission Bill today. The Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) will investigate claimed miscarriages of justice. “We’ve seen how our justice system can very occasionally get things spectacularly wrong, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Racing Industry destined to be on-track
    Racing Minister Winston Peters welcomes the tabling of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) 2019 Annual Report in Parliament today. He says the 2019 Annual Report marks the point when New Zealand’s racing industry’s decline was arrested and a turnaround started. RITA’s 2019 Annual Report recorded an industry net profit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand firefighter support to Queensland
    The New Zealand Government is today sending 21 firefighters to help fight the ongoing catastrophic Australian bushfires. “The fires in Australia are in some of the toughest, most challenging conditions ever,” says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin.  “As of yesterday morning, there were 100 active bushfire-related incidents across Queensland and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supporting all schools to succeed
      More frontline support for schools through a new education agency, as part of a redesigned Ministry of Education More support for principals and school boards including through a new centre of leadership and local leadership advisor roles New independent disputes panels for parents and students Management of school property ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Reform to support better outcomes for Māori learners and whānau
    The Government’s reform of the Tomorrow’s Schools system is a watershed moment in education and an opportunity to create meaningful change for ākonga Māori and their whānau, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis said today. “Last year through Kōrero Mātauranga | Education Conversation, Māori teachers, parents, ākonga, whānau, hapū and iwi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago