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Jacinda’s campaign launch speech

Written By: - Date published: 5:17 pm, August 20th, 2017 - 111 comments
Categories: election 2017, jacinda ardern, labour - Tags:

Text of Jacinda Ardern’s speech delivered today – video after the text .

Kia ora koutou katoa,
Kia orana,
Malo e lelei,
Ni sa bula vinaka,
Fakalofal lahiatu,
Ni Hao,

And thank you so much for that welcome.

And a warm welcome to those who travelled near and far, like my wonderful mum Laurell all the way from Niue, and to those watching this online – including my sister in London.

And yes, that was a test Louise to see if you are watching.

Thank you for joining our movement. Our strength rests on all your shoulders. You keep the faith. Many of you pound the pavements and work the phones.

It’s your energy that has been our constant motivation, and it’s your passion that will help us win.

I feel incredibly honoured to be the leader of the New Zealand Labour Party.

Leadership is not always easy though. I saw that first hand, before I even took on this job.

And that’s why I want start today by paying tribute to Andrew Little.

I watched you, Andrew, give everything to leading our team. Over more than two years, you pulled us together and led an incredible ground campaign. You then made one of the hardest calls I have seen someone make in politics.

You have always been focused on doing whatever it takes to put Labour in the best position to help others – and that is a legacy I promise to uphold.

To Kelvin Davis, the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party and to his informal campaign manager – Creature of Northland.

I have never seen someone whose instincts are more directly connected to the people they serve than Kelvin. We are incredibly lucky to have the leadership you provide, and also as a member of our Maori caucus. It’s a caucus we will grow this election, and will see the strongest representation for Maori and women that we have ever had. That makes me so proud.

To all of our candidates who work so hard representing and advocating for their communities. Each and every one of you deserve to be in Parliament, and together, many more of you will join us on the 23rd of September.

Ladies and gentlemen, friends.

Just a few weeks ago I stood before the media and told them we were about to run the campaign of our lives. Looking at you all, I know that’s true.

I remember the last time that I felt that way was nine years ago. It was the 16 of December 2008, the day I gave my first speech to parliament.

The first speech you give in Parliament, your maiden speech, is always treated as quite a big deal. It’s a little bit like an Oscar acceptance speech, except in some cases you haven’t actually won anything.

They are speeches that are full of hope, and aspiration.

Here’s how I started mine, nine years ago:

Quote: “Maiden speeches are a bit like words spoken in a heated argument. Like it or not,
they will come back to haunt you.”

But sometimes, there are words that you want to come back. Things you want to haunt you
again and again, to remind you why you are there.

Because sometimes they are not just words; they’re convictions, they are experiences, they are faces and they are stories.

I have described myself as relentlessly positive.

That’s probably because I was born in Hamilton, where everyone is always optimistic that the fog will lift. Literally.

But at a young age my family relocated to Murupara.

I was just about to start school when we packed up to move to a place that we had never visited, and that we would call home for the next few years.

We lived in the small grey-brick house in front of the police station. When you’re a child, you remember the little things. The nice lady at the dairy who you bought lolly mixes from. How you couldn’t walk round town without jandals because of the broken glass. The kids who didn’t have shoes, even in winter when the puddles would ice over. And the number of people who had lost their job, and their hope.

It was the 1980s and I was living in a place that remains etched in my memory even today.

But I was young. This was not the place or moment I was politicised. It was the moment I empathised.

And that is ultimately what I still see as the foundation for what we should be doing in this place. Understanding the issues people in our communities face, their experiences, and never being satisfied that things are the way they are, and can’t be changed or made better.

That is why I chose politics. That is why I am here.

But I am not the first Labour politician to see the world that way.

My dad shed a tear when Norman Kirk died.

Kirk passed away 6 years before I was born, so the first I knew of this man was that he made my father cry. That was enough for me to know he was special.

His picture hangs on my wall. Not your usual portrait photo, but a newspaper clipping from the Te Aroha News. He’s on his way to a Hindu wedding, standing next to a neatly dressed woman.

That woman is my Nana, or as she would have liked to have been known, the Secretary of the Piako Labour Electorate Committee.

I was twelve years old when my Nana died. I was too young to have ever talked to her about politics. So instead that clipping is a reminder to me. A reminder that MPs come and go, leaders come and go, and all we can do is make sure we leave something good behind.

That means taking on the hard issues. Thinking not just about the next three years, but the next ten. It means being bold and being brave. Kirk was both of those things, and so were others. In fact it has always been Labour governments who have confronted New Zealand’s challenges, who haven’t been afraid of standing up, or of doing things differently.

For Savage, that meant seeing hardship, and creating the welfare state.

For Fraser, it was predicting the challenges of the future and bringing in free education from kindergarten to university.

For Kirk, it was seeing a loss of dignity and getting back to basics like full employment.

For Lange, it was standing up for peace by standing up to nukes.

For Clark, it was about social infrastructure. And for me it’s simple: I want to build a country where every child grows up free from poverty, and is filled with hope and opportunity.

But of course, that requires me, and Labour to be elected. And for some people, there are some unanswered questions which simply boil down to one, simple thing.

Now what?

Kiwis know we have an economy some would argue compares well internationally, and we’re told people want predictability and certainty. But the gap between rich and poor is just getting more and more entrenched.

So now what?

We know we have homelessness, that there are people living in cars who can’t afford increasing rents, but we don’t want to waste time with blame and sometimes we’re not even sure it’s something politicians can fix.

So now what?

We have infrastructure in our cities that cannot keep up with daily demand, while our regions look for the job opportunities that will make their young people stay.

So I ask again: Now what?

Well now we stand up. We do what we have done before. We refuse to accept the status quo, the idea that things can’t be improved and that we have no choice.

We have a choice, and we can choose better.

Some have said that the only thing I need to show you to prove that I deserve to govern is an appreciation of the economy.

You will never hear me question the importance of a strong economy. Never. I worked alongside the last Labour government whose economic record speaks for itself and for that, I say thank you Helen Clark, and thank you Michael Cullen.

But the major point of difference on economic issues this election is not how long either leader has spent working with Treasury – it’s what we use as the signs of success.

I will always maintain that a successful economy is one that serves its people. Not the other way around. And that means judging success differently.

GDP rates, and numbers on a sheet of paper don’t always tell you much about the wellbeing of the people working to keep our economy going.

Yes GDP is rising in New Zealand. And in some respects we’re told we are the envy of the world. But how someone in Whanganui feels about their wages, their cost of living, and their prospects matters more to me than the praise of overseas financial commentators.

And on that measure, we could be doing so much better. Last year two thirds of people had a pay rise that didn’t keep up with the increasing cost of living. If people feel like they are going backwards, how can we claim we are moving forwards.

Add to that the more than 70,000 young people not in employment, education, or training, and perhaps the measure that bothers me the most, we have nearly 300,000 kids living in poverty.

I want economic success to feel real, and it won’t feel like anything but faint praise until it feels real for all New Zealanders.

That is why the markers of success have to change, and I am starting with kids.

Under Labour, we will change the Public Finance Act so that every budget, you don’t just hear about surpluses and deficits, you will hear about how many kids we have lifted out of poverty.

We will do the same when it comes to showing our progress on challenges we have postponed for too long, and yes that includes the environment and climate change.

Because when we hold ourselves to account, you can hold us to account.

And we will only do better, when we are honest about where we are starting.

But it’s also time we shared that same honesty about economic success not being evenly spread – between people, but also across our regions.

I have spent longer living in small town New Zealand than I have spent in Auckland. I have seen the constant battle to find a way to make young people stay, and to build a future.

No one expects central government to have all of the answers, but they should expect us to ask questions.

A government that I lead will be an active partner in our regions – not telling them what to do, but sitting down with council, employers, unions and employees – figuring out ways to support the growth of decent, well paid jobs.

That is why last year we went to Gisborne, and collectively developed an initiative to process timber into prefabricated houses.

That is why we went to Dunedin, and co-created the Centre of Digital Excellence.

That is why we went to Whanganui and pledged to fix their Port.

And that is why we will keep asking – what can we do together, because I know regional economic development can change towns, it can change cities and it can change lives.

But there is one more marker of success I want to focus on. Because the answer to this one lies at Labour’s core.

Economic experts talk a lot about our low productivity. I can see why.

It’s shorthand for relying on people to work longer to prop up our economy. It’s shorthand for low wages. It’s shorthand for fewer hours at home with your kids.

And it’s shorthand for a country that’s dropped the ball on skills and innovation.

All of that flies in the face of what New Zealand is meant to be.

We are a nation of small business, so let’s reward people who invest in them.

We are innovators, so let’s bring back the R&D tax credit.

We are young and facing so much change so let’s educate our workers of today, and upskill our workers of tomorrow.

And with Labour, that’s exactly what we’ll do.

You will have heard it said that education is the great leveller. It’s part of what has made us the fair society we have all been so proud of.

But I would go further – education is a public good, and that’s why it should be free.

I remember when I first started studying. I worked in a fish n chip shop, then a gift shop, then a supermarket. For a time I was doing all three at once. I would change into my chippy uniform at the back of the gift shop ready for my Friday night shift. My wages basically kept my 1979 Toyota Corona on the road.

I saved hard. I wanted to go to university, and I was determined to do it without debt. But I had choices and opportunities, many don’t and that should never be a barrier to learning.

Since 1999 we have been campaigning to make education more accessible, and we’re still doing it today.

That is why Labour is committed to revolutionising education.

We have already pledged to make the first three years of post secondary education free. Whether you are an apprentice, going to polytech, or taking on a degree. Whether you are coming straight from school, or need to retrain – Labour will invest in your future.

We will change our schools from being a place of assessment to a place of creativity.

We will reopen our night schools so that people of any age and any background can keep learning.

With a Labour Government, education won’t just be a leveller again, it will be what sets our country apart.

Leading a country that gives our next generation hope and opportunity means there is another issue we can’t look past. Housing.

Housing affects everything. There is nothing more basic than having a roof over your head. That is why a warm, dry, decent home is a right.

I was door knocking in Hastings a few years back, and remember some doors where I couldn’t see inside for the dampness pouring down them. Even in my home electorate. I’ve seen kids who sleep stacked underneath bunk beds because there is just no room.

That is our housing situation at its worst. But this is not a reality we have to accept.

I do not accept that young people, our teachers and our nurses should give up on owning a home. Not when we can do just three things that will make all the difference.

Under Labour, we will remove speculators’ unfair tax advantages.

We’ll stop foreign buyers who have no interest in New Zealand buying existing homes.

And we’ll just get on and build more houses.

And for those who genuinely choose to rent, you deserve to know that your home is warm and dry. You deserve to have greater security. And under Labour, you will.

There is an old saying of Norman Kirk’s that I really treasure. He once said that people don’t want much, just “someone to love, somewhere to live, somewhere to work and something to hope for”.

Some might say that hope and love aren’t things that government can really offer. Those people haven’t thought enough about an issue we all have a stake in – our country’s mental health.

I’ve spoken before about why this issue matters to me. Everyone knows someone affected by mental health, or devastated by suicide.

Yesterday I asked a room full of young people if they did, and every single hand in that room was lifted into the air. Every single one.

New Zealand’s youth suicide rate is the highest in the OECD. While there is a lot of talk about targets, I know I will never ever be satisfied so long as there is even one life lost.

It is time we focused on love and hope rather than grief and loss. And we need to start with young people.

That’s why we will put a nurse in every single public high school across the country. And we will make sure that every single child in Canterbury and Kaikoura will also have the support they need, when they need it.

It’s a $50 million investment, and it’s amongst the most important investments we will make.

But our children, and our young people, also need us to look to their future.

The very first time I was booed in politics was in Matamata. It was a public meeting during the 2008 election, and I was asked about climate change. A wise candidate told me later – if 50% of a public meeting isn’t disagreeing with you at any one time, you’re probably not saying anything. I did wonder if 100% of the room meant I was saying too much.

But I will never stop talking about it, because it’s the challenge that defines my generation.

I remember listening to a couple of members of my family discussing climate change a few years ago. It’s fair to say they were sceptical. I was waiting for my moment to jump in, when suddenly I heard my father pipe up. “I don’t know much about the science he said, “but I do know what they showed me in Kiribati”.

He had visited with local village leaders who had shown him where the water sat when they were children, and where it was now – lapping squarely around their survival.

There will always be those who say it’s too difficult. There will be those who say we are too small, and that pollution and climate change are the price of progress.

They are wrong.

We will take climate change seriously because my Government will be driven by principle, not expediency. And opportunity, not fear.

And there is an opportunity, that we can turn into our advantage, and shape our identity. It is a transition that can, and must, be just.

This is my generation’s nuclear free moment, and I am determined that we will tackle it head on.

But restoring our role as innovators, and as a clean green nation on the world stage, means tackling something closer to home.

Our rivers are dying. The majority are almost too dirty to swim in.

I don’t accept that this is just the way things are now. Not when we our water is a taonga.

Not when we have a duty to protect it. And not when we can turn things around.

We will clean up our rivers. We will do it for the next generation. And we will do it together.

We do have some hard calls to make. But the government I lead will be a government that listens, then acts. A government that leads, not follows.

I will never stop believing that politics is a place where we can do good.

That we can build a confident and caring nation if we include each and every person, in each and every town and region. That is New Zealand at its best.

It’s been three weeks now since I was asked to take this job and lead our campaign. In those three weeks, I’ve never once felt alone. Whether it’s been on social media, on the streets, or by your show of support here today, I feel humbled and heartened.

So, the question for all of us – for you and for me – is this: Now what?

Now we re-double our efforts.

Now we focus not just on the challenges, but the opportunities that will bring lasting change.

Now we be bold, and now we be brave.

This is our moment, and it starts with you.

This is a time for talking with your families and friends. This is a time for knocking on doors and working the phones. This is a time for sharing our vision of tomorrow with everyone you meet.

Let’s go from here today and run the campaign of our lives.

Let’s do this.

(If it doesn’t embed use link)

111 comments on “Jacinda’s campaign launch speech ”

  1. Robert Guyton 1


    • Heather Grimwood 1.1

      to Robert at !: and present indications suggest that the stunning Liz Craig will be there with her !!!

      • Robert Guyton 1.1.1

        Liz is the perfect option for all of those Invercargill people who find the National Party person unconvincing.

  2. GDP rates, and numbers on a sheet of paper don’t always tell you much about the wellbeing of the people working to keep our economy going.

    Yes GDP is rising in New Zealand. And in some respects we’re told we are the envy of the world. But how someone in Whanganui feels about their wages, their cost of living, and their prospects matters more to me than the praise of overseas financial commentators.

    The measure of if an economy is doing well or not is if is there are any people in poverty. Doesn’t matter if they’re children or adult. A well functioning economy will ensure that everyone has a good living standard and can participate in our society.

    The economic paradigm that we’ve been following for the last 30+ years has been increasing poverty and generally decreasing living standards.

    • In Vino 2.1

      True. Amazing to hear a politician starting to recognise it… Too good to be true?

    • Brendan 2.2

      Gini coefficient. How concentrated or spread is the country’s wealth.

      • Unless the Gini Coefficient shows a zero we would likely still have poverty.

        Better, IMO, to state a poverty level and have no one drop below it. The easy way to do that would be a UBI.

        • Bob

          Draco, u need a job with the strategy team! Come 24th Sept.
          yes it’s hard to believe I’m hearing Empathy again, and from a politician with a brain.
          Even Matthew Hooten said, “this is the laziest National Govt he’s seen”

      • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2

        From memory, it’s useful, but it doesn’t accurately measure asset-based inequality.

    • Bob 2.3

      Well Said, my sentiments exactly, time to rebalance the whole country.
      I pray like hell, Labour mobilizers the youth vote, & the Sth Auckland vote.
      The Nats are having their Launch in Manukau Im told.
      There are far too many Blue billboards.
      I look fwd to a #changethegovt

  3. Jenny Kirk 3

    I witnessed something extraordinary today : Labour had 2800 people at its campaign launch. This is a record-breaking event the Party’s history !
    In the past, we think we’ve done well to get 600 to a campaign launch.

    The Auckland Town Hall was crowded – both in the concert chamber, and in the Great Hall – and the overflow of people who couldn’t get in had to go elsewhere to see a live streaming of the event.

    • Robert Guyton 3.1

      Again, stunning!

    • Karen 3.2

      We got to there at 12:40 and the queue was already getting close to the Civic. At 1:00 my partner went and checked at the entrance and discovered the main room at the Town Hall was already full and the chamber was filling up fast. Q theatre would be the next option so we headed up there. It quickly filled up with standing room only – hundreds of people were turned away. It was absolutely astonishing.

  4. Carolyn_nth 4

    The interest and enthusiasm seems like a very good sign for a change of government.

    Ardern does seem to have appeal for many people.

    I do not see much change from the policies the NZLP have developed over recent years. Although Ardern, like Cunliffe before her, has put a strong emphasis on the environment, which is a very good thing.

    However, that is still in keeping with what many people in NZ are concerned with – that rhetoric is not an exceptional step.

    So far, I haven’t seen anything bold or brave, except maybe the move to change leader in an election period.

    I don’t think Team Ardern were bold and brave in not supporting Turei and beneficiaries when it was important.

    The mention of fighting poverty, is maybe a nod towards the GP. However, the LP has talked about poverty in recent years, and still haven’t talked about major, and much needed re-development of social security.

    Clark’s LP had a much bolder closing the gap policy before Labour came into government, only to step back from it pretty quickly.

    So, it’s great to be done with the NACTs, but a Labour-led government will still need a strong GP (along with some promising young Labour candidates) to keep them on track with policies that work for the many – and to well and truly change direction for NZ politics from that of the last couple of decades.

    If such a major change doesn’t happen, the future for all many NZers in the long term, will be bleak, no matter how stirring the rhetoric or personal appeal of the leader.

    • Jenny Kirk 4.1

      Andrew Little left a major legacy to Labour when he stepped down – he had helped produce a large number of very good socialistic policies – ones which will help those who are poor, those who are homeless, those who cannot afford to buy a home, along with more detailed resourcing into health, education and the environment. And NO tax cuts – which will help pay instead of all those social services which are floundering and just about gone under, under the nasty Nats.

      • Carolyn_nth 4.1.1

        I hope, then, that Arderns’ LP does work towards such a major overhaul of social security with all that.

        • Bob

          An overhaul must happen, and if LP win they will work fast hopefully, the disparity is too great & the future generations have been forgotten about by the Nats.
          Time to rebalance this country !!!

    • Ad 4.2

      You are right insofar as there is no “credit card” of promises like Helen Clark’s first campaign in 1999.

      But this Labour Party is clear about what it is going to do within very specific limits – and people understand that and support it in droves.

      The current policy settings are as strong as you are going to get.

  5. Pat 5

    Cometh the hour, cometh the (wo)man…shes very good and should be the next PM…..hard to see otherwise now.

  6. Siobhan 6

    Quite surprised Helen Clark bothered to be there. Though she appears to have avoided the camera.
    All those weeks ago, I distinctly recall Jacinda being quite taken back when asked by RNZ if Helen had been calling around urging the party to vote Jacinda in as leader.

    Jacinda laughed and declared something along the lines of, ‘why would Helen do that for (and I distinctly recall this bit) “Little old me”‘.

    Why so coy??
    And Is having Helen on board really that toxic?

    • Ad 6.1

      Helen Clark was seated in the front row, in the aisle, and was prominently featured in the tv news and in the speech.

      Helen Clark is Ardern’s most powerful proxy.

      There is nothing “toxic” about Helen Clark – in fact she shows all signs of being used extensively throughout the Labour campaign.

      • Rightly or Wrongly 6.1.1

        Kind of a feeling of deja vu.

        Bill English in Charge of National with difficult polls.

        Helen Clark near the center of power in regards to the Labour leadership.

        The Green Party being somewhat relegated to the sidelines in terms of media focus and polling.

        Murky issues relating to Art Auctions.

        Winston Peters gearing up to sample some baubles/responsibilities of Ministerial Office.

        All we need now is for Jim Anderton to pop his hand up out of retirement and this would be 2002 redux.

  7. Ian 7

    It’s a pity the labour Party didnt know months ago the greens would eat themselves
    They would have attracted a much higher caliber of candidate
    As a first generation,self made farmer I am finding the deliberate targeting of rural folk in this election campaign sickening and very sad
    David Parker may not like negotiating , but he has a lot to learn.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1

      Do you know how many farmers are on the Green Party list Ian?

      Don’t try and answer all at once.

      • Ian 7.1.1

        An irelevant question. Those that are will at least have a job . Doesn’t pay much but a great lifestyle.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          I like how you describe yourself as self-made too.


          • Ian

            back to your normal abuse ,I was starting to get worried . If I didn’t do it it wouldnt have happened . Sorry if you don’t get it. Being anonymous must have a few drawbacks.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Do you understand why describing yourself as self-made is a sign of ill-gratitude? Take as much time as you need, anonymous Ian.

    • Jenny Kirk 7.2

      If you tried to swim, or drink, or get any kai from the rivers in the north, Ian – you’d make yourself sick.
      And this has been happening because of increased dairying, increasing numbers of cattle dying, poo-ing and wee-ing in these same rivers and lack of control by the regional council and others to stop this happening. That’s why farmers are getting a bad look from others ….. they have used our rivers and streams as a sort-of natural sewage system for their animals, and it is time they stopped doing this.

      • Ian 7.2.1

        Hi Jenny . My river is the Taruheru ,flowing into the Turanganui. I don’t need to be reminded about the poo in the river in the North.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Ah yes, the river with predominantly ruminant faecal contamination (source – Gisborne District Council cf: Taruheru River Restoration Project).

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              The Faecal Source Tracking Report prepared for the GDC shows exactly how much Ian’s narrative is a lie.

              The baseline for the Taruheru river shows contamination at <100 E Coli MPN/100 mL, from avian sources

              Downriver, the monitoring sites show the following measures and sources of contamination.

              Taruheru River monitoring site 550-690 Avian Ruminant
              Taruheru: upper urban Gisborne 860-1200 Avian
              Ruminant Dog.
              Taruheru: middle urban Gisborne 1200-1500 Ruminant Avian Dog.
              Taruheru: lower urban Gisborne 1300-2400 Avian Ruminant Dog.

              The report can be found here.

              Obviously the testing equipment hates Ian. “Sickening” indeed.

    • Ad 7.3

      +1 Parker needs to stay cool.

      He should remember the “fart tax” protests.

      • Ian 7.3.1

        Unfortunately he has lost his cool at Ashburton and he also threatened the fruity guys from hort NZ.
        His nasty ,hatefull arrogance has probably put close to a million dollars into Nationals war chest.

        • BM

          Yeah, I read about that on Kiwiblog, what a fucking cock Parker is.

          No idea how Winston Peters could ever go into coalition with a party that’s so open about fucking over his voters.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Farrar rents space in your head. Still, at least there’s semi-intelligent life in there somewhere.

          • Ian

            The good folk of Ashburton ,apart from the lefty council that got voted in on the ravings of the ban the bore crazy lady will not want to see David Parker again. It is a pity the media keep protecting him and don’t actually REport how his arrogance upsets so many voters.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Despite the fact that some worthless unpersons won the election, all the real people agree with Ian.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Zero returns on that investment. Hope they’ve got some side bets 😆

        • Pat

          so it would seem…however Id suggest his stance is similar to that taken by National when “consulting” unions…and although Nationals war chest may swell I seriously doubt it has cost Labour one vote that would have gone their way otherwise.
          With approaching 80% public approval for some form of water charging the reality is the rural sector is going to have to negotiate this issue regardless who is in government.

          • Ian

            Hi Pat. Labour have done their homework and polling is showing that 80 % of the public are in favour of charging for water so they are going to wack it to a small group of farmers they don’t like.
            Unfortunately, the public are totally missinformed and don’t understand the water cycle,modern farming practices,what regional councils are doing and are being totally missinformed by slimey propogandists.
            The propoganda from Fish and Game ,greenpuke, and what was the green party has not been answered that well because farmers are busy people spending billions of our own dollars on environmental mitigation.Parker has poked the bear and don’t be surprised with the response.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Is that before or after the sky falls on your head?

            • Robert Guyton

              Hi Pat. You’ll have put Ian’s comments into the “ignore” folder already, and quite rightly.

            • Pat

              not surprised at all…am surprised that rural sector dont appear to have seen this coming….theres no denying 20 years of intensification has had an impact , it couldn’t last forever and there was going to be a winding back and clean up to be paid for sooner or later….the sooner the better IMO, as the longer we wait the harder its going to hit.

            • Jenny Kirk

              Excellent story in the latest Geographic magazine, Ian, about how farmers have lost their social agenda. Suggest you read it. Might then make sense of what some of us are trying to tell you.

              • Ian

                Too busy doing my nutrient budgets ,environmental plans and have an environmental audit coming up in November. I am also busy planting and controlling weeds in the covenanted land we recently donated to the people of New Zealand. If I get time tomorrow after I have cleared the possum traps I might google the national geographic to see what happened to my social agenda.

            • beatie

              Hi Ian, I’m intrigued. Please do inform me of the water cycle, modern farming practices and what regional councils are doing. Thanks

            • Stuart Munro

              You realize Fish and Game were your friends. Until you made the rivers run with shit.

              • Ian

                I,m sorry ,You seem very confused. I have never been friends with fish and game and the only shit I have recently seen in a river was human shit and it was in my river the Turanganui. Which is very sad.

                • Stuart Munro

                  “The water quality in this river is poor due to it being the drainage point for two very large catchments with various land uses. The fact that this river is tidal improves water quality.”

                  • Ian

                    You know full well that Gisborne City Council regularly discharges raw human shit into the river due to failing infrastructure. If Gisborne city council was a dairy farm Gisborne city would have been closed down 10 years ago.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Actually I haven’t been in Gisborne since 1982, but it didn’t seem to be a world leader either aesthetically or environmentally. The citrus were good though.

                    • CLEANGREEN


                      Yes Ian, – I am right behind you regarding Gisborne City (District) council (GDC) who have lost their way regarding the environment here in Gisborne.

                      Our groups have been very active with GDC over cleaning up our environment with no success any more as National has been effectively blackmailing this council with financial penalties if they dont “conform” to their wishes to drop suopport to jion our fight to save our rail service which is a large component to saving our environment instead of building more roads for truck freight as Government are now all about. This was the submission we offered the media and council to consider before GDC agreed to back roads and not rail as the way forward it tells the whole issue clearly now.

                      We must restore the rail in all regional areas as the road runoff of all forms of pollution including tyre dust is now entering our streams, rivers, lakes aquifers and now our drinking water including the stock effluent we see every day dripping off stock trucks as we follow behind them now even through several have on board containment we still see them overflowing now and the effluent now is sadly entering our water systems from our roads.

                      Jacinda is 100% correct to target climate change and environment as the issue of our time.


                      Ken Crispin: Rail is cleaner option over road
                      22 Oct, 2015 6:00pm

                      Ken Crispin responds to Talking Point: “Rail service viable and essential”.
                      Hawkes Bay Today

                      In response to Talking Point: “Rail service viable and essential” featured in Hawke’s Bay Today, October 20, 2015) by Alan Dick, QSM.

                      Our Environment Centre (CEAC) has received more than 2000 letters and petitions from residents from Napier to Gisborne fed up with 24/7 heavy truck traffic waking them all hours and poisoning the air with diesel smells.

                      People complain of overwhelming exhaust smells and heavy soot covering their homes since the rail service stopped three years ago.

                      Our centre believes the environmental impacts being felt must be taken into account when considering the saving of the Gisborne/Napier rail. It is vital for the public health and well-being of our communities and future generations to retain the rail link.

                      How safe is the air that we breathe?

                      The two pollutants which give most cause for concern are the toxic gas nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and particulate matter (PM2.5). Earlier this year, the UK’s highest court ruled the Government must take action to cut NO2 pollution.

                      The UK has been in breach of EU limits for nitrogen dioxide so it (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) published a consultation on draft plans to improve air quality.

                      This problem is now occurring in our cities and towns along heavy freight truck routes and rail is recognised as the answer for movement of freight and passengers.

                      Governments knew this 16 years ago when they conducted a study of rail versus road freight emissions, so why has the treasury advised we close all regional rail in New Zealand?

                      Evidence: the New Zealand Government in 1999 produced an “Impacts of Rail Transport on Local Air Quality” report.
                      Related articles:

                      The MoT Fuels and Energy Management group report shows how fuel-efficient and low-pollution rail transport really is. # 363.73926 RAI # 4037.

                      The report confirmed that rail freight per tonne per kilometre travelled had extremely low NOx levels compared with trucking’s freight per tonne per km higher levels (four times) of all harmful pollution emissions.

                      Quote from page 34 of “Impacts of Rail Transport on Local Air Quality” report: 5.5: Locomotive Emissions; Opportunities for Reduction.

                      “Based on these inventory results, there does not appear to be a specific need to target the emissions from the rail sector in managing local air quality.

                      The only emission of any significance from locomotives is of NOx but the output relative to other combustion sources is still minimal in terms of total activity measures.”

                      Why the Government needs to support rail for public urban residential health & safety:

                      -Evidence of much higher diesel air emissions emerging, thanks to the Volkswagen diesel scandal.

                      -Doubts are emerging about our urban air quality, public health and safety and emissions of truck freight 24/7 through our urban residential zones as New Zealand has set no standards.

                      -Since the VW diesel scandal, similar diesel truck emissions cheating was uncovered.

                      -No safeguards for communities near truck routes.

                      -We need the protection of public health agencies along with MoT oversight.

                      Government, please heed our call for the reinstatement of provincial rail services, to protect the health and well-being of all our regional communities, as overseas governments are doing.

                      -Ken Crispin is Secretary of CEAC, the project manager for East Coast Transportation Project for CEAC and is also manager & co- director of CER an environmental monitoring company.

                      -Business and civic leaders, organisers, experts in their field and interest groups can contribute opinions.
                      The views expressed here are the writer’s personal opinion, and not the newspaper’s. Email: editor@hbtoday.co.nz



                      Why not build the rail north now?
                      by Ken Crispin, SecretaryCitizens Environmental Advocacy Centre Published: July 21, 2017 12:34PM

                      Re: IwiRail launched on public empathy and a wild dream, July 13th 2017 editorial.

                      We have a large transport library and have done some considerable research since NZ First launched its rail transport policy, Railways Of National Importance. Now the Maori Party has also come up with a policy suggesting that completing regional rail lines will increase the viability of rail services, making them more accessible and used more often. We agree, as evidence supports this.
                      History firstly showed that our prime minister and treasurer Sir Julius Vogel, as NZ’s premier politician, set out an ambitious rail plan for us in 1880.
                      Julius Vogel was a leader for planning infrastructure during the 1800s and set about to bring rail to Gisborne in 1880, with survey maps from that date through to 1899 showing two rail lines north to Auckland passing through Gisborne.
                      Originally the continuation of the railway line from Taneatua (near Whakatane) was to be extended to Opotiki on through the Waioeka Gorge to Gisborne linking to the Palmerston North -Gisborne line.
                      Work did begin, however, due to two world wars, an economic depression and an influenza epidemic, this ambitious extension to the railway line was never completed.
                      Since then several other route options have emerged, making the building of a rail line to Whakatane far more easily completed — not through the gorge, as the Waioeka gorge has proved quite unstable with several large slips in recent times. Another route option goes from Gisborne inland north to East Cape and around to Opotiki.
                      So the question we ask now of the Government is: Why did they spend $13 billion on double-laning the road from Hamilton through Rotorua to Tauranga, but did not consider any continuation of the rail line from Gisborne to Auckland — as several opposition political parties suggest now — especially since road building costs have been increasing due to the unstable land the roads in this region sit on?
                      Escalating road maintenance is just one issue. We all see the increased road surface damage, which makes travel more dangerous, as we drive on the roads we now share with increasing numbers of heavier trucks.
                      Extra consideration must now be given as Gisborne is the most isolated North Island community of its size — especially since the founding prime minister planned for this in 1880. Now, almost 140 years later, we still haven’t completed the line north.
                      Surely we can do better than this in his memory, and for our wealth, health, wellbeing and regional security.
                      We have marvellous earth-moving systems and machinery nowadays, such as the tunnel-boring machine used on Auckland’s Waterview tunnel, that may make this an easier job than it was then.
                      Our group has studied many negative environmental impacts to residential communities around New Zealand.
                      Both Gisborne and Napier share the dangers of 24/7 freight truck traffic producing excessive noise, vibration, air and tyre dust pollution that have now been certified as a public health hazard.These pollutants get into our rivers, streams and aquifers from road runoff, and into our drinking water.
                      We can all benefit when we use rail to move our freight around the country, saving both lives and the environment.
                      Local trucks will always be needed for freight distribution, but when we move freight north by road without the benefit of rail to ports such as Tauranga and Auckland, it is considered unsustainable.
                      Let us think wisely and plan for a future with environmentally-clean transport options.

  8. BM 8

    I repeat again, Labour is going hard out on taking out the Greens, the same as what National did to ACT.

    Shaw needs to signal that the Greens are open to working with all parties otherwise the Greens are gone.

    After today why would anyone except the very hardcore vote Green? Labour is now ticking all the environmental boxes that appealed so heavily to all those urban Green voters.

    [Have to say the astroturfing is getting tedious BM. By all means make the argument that Labour are going hard out on taking out the Greens, but from now on, having stated it as a fact, you will have to provide evidence. Now would be a good time, and I’ll keep an eye on your comments over the next while too – weka]

      • popexplosion 8.1.1

        Voting ACT does not harm National. Voting Labour in a Maori seat does not harm the Maori party. So it does not follow Party voting Green harms Labour. Ardern by embracing clean water, anti poverty, climate change, means she can work with Greens. Greens are not a threat to Labour, split voting is a threat to National who rely on ACT, Maori, and UF all from split voters!!!! Party vote Green.

    • Danger Will Robinson danger (swing arms wildly) repeat…

    • BM 8.3

      Do you guys not give a shit if the Greens are absorbed into Labour?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 8.3.1

        When I want you, in my arms,
        When I want you, and all your charms,
        Whenever I want you all I have to do is,
        Dream dream dream, dream dream…

        Everybody sing along for BM.

      • Jenny Kirk 8.3.2

        Someone took a video – its quite long – of the queue waiting outside the Auckland Town Hall this afternoon – all 2800 of us – and frankly, it looks like a Labour support crowd to me – genuine Labour, no Greens, no NZFs – just our usual motley crew turning up in our thousands to greet our new leader. The vid is on Facebook.
        Personally BM I think the Greens will bounce back – they have a solid support crew at the back of them – just like Labour does – and it should be sufficient to see them back into Parliament, alongside Labour !

        • Carolyn_nth

          It is important for the GP to get a significant number of MPs back into parliament. There are some very good and diverse candidates on the GP list at around the point they could miss out if the GP get only 8% of the vote.

          GP List candidates #7 to #17:

          Chlöe Swarbrick (Maungakiekie)
          Golriz Ghahraman (Te Atatu)
          Mojo Mathers (Rangitata)
          Barry Coates (Epsom)
          Jack McDonald (Te Tai Hauauru)
          John Hart (Wairarapa)
          Denise Roche (Auckland Central)
          Hayley Holt (Helensville)
          Teall Crossen (Rongotai)
          Teanau Tuiono (Manurewa)
          Leilani Tamu (New Lynn)

    • weka 8.4

      See moderator note above.

      • BM 8.4.1

        Evidence?, My God, open your eyes, it’s staring you in the face!!.

        If you’re not willing to accept the reality of what’s going on I’ll leave it at that and that’s the last thing I’ll say on this matter.

        [funnily enough, I don’t believe you (about it being the last thing you’ll say on the matter) and I don’t have time or inclination right now to check past moderations and comments about this pattern of behaviour. So let’s just call it a one week ban and a warning for next time that if you choose to run lines like this, if you present them as statements of fact you need to include evidence or expect a longer moderation. – weka]

    • Craig H 8.5

      I don’t think it’s cynical targeting so much as Labour actually believe in those policies, but it’s an unfortunate side effect.

      It’s an occupational hazard for any political party with a narrow focus that another party will decide enough of the policies are worth implementing that the party is left without a raison d’etre, which is why going solely environmental will fail. Go left, go right, be centrist, but a Green Party without other policies will be crushed.

      • Go left, go right, be centrist, but a Green Party without other policies will be crushed.

        Which is, IMO, why the RWNJs keep telling the Greens that they should only be an environmental party.

    • Incognito 8.6

      I don’t know where this misguided or even mischievous thinking comes from that Labour is going to cannibalise the Green Party – is the power play of and at the Left that similar to that of and at the Right? A true Left represents a multicultural and diverse society and thus cannot be one single dominant party IMHO. If the Greens would not make it into Parliament it would be more than sad for NZ society.

      Anyway, it makes no sense under MMP to try and fit too many diverse groups into one broad church. In fact, I think it is antithetical to a representative democracy.

      My preference is that the 5% threshold gets abolished and that we have more parties (on the left, I suppose) adhering to and advocating participatory democratic principles.

      • Bill 8.6.1

        Yeah Incognito – there’s what is good for NZ’s “representative” political environment and then there’s the allure of power. Those two things are not necessarily compatible.

    • Bill 8.7

      Not buying the “Shaw needs to signal that the Greens are open to working with all parties”, but the way I’m looking at it, NZ Labour was fairly adroit in triangulating both the Green’s transport policy and water policy….but (quelle surprise) left the “hot potato” of welfare policy alone.

      So, the cynic in me says your right enough about NZ Labour “doing an ACT” on the Green Party.

      And my reading between the lines of Carolyn_nth’s comment here, that I also agree with, leads me to think there’s a certain confluence between some on the left and some on the right on aspects of what’s going on.

      But y’know – don’t expect any of this shit to be popular or in any way acceptable.

      The radical centre has hung on for now, and that will be celebrated. 😉


    These two sentences sold me on her, as in the regions we feel deserted now even the media stay away from us in Gisborne or HB

    “That we can build a confident and caring nation if we include each and every person, in each and every town and region. That is New Zealand at its best.”

    When Jacinda said this I almost wept with joy, – as for nine years the National government has refused to come and talk with us after repeated emails over six yrs for help from them goes unheeded about our lost rail service that was washed out in 2012 by government funding cut for rail maintenance!!!!

    Now due to no rail the roads now are falling apart as 2400 trucks a day drive right through Napier within 9 metres of many homes at 100 kms an hour all night long and all residents cant cope now with no noise walls who the hell can sleep now there???

    Jacinda’s winning words here;

    “That we can build a confident and caring nation if we include each and every person, in each and every town and region. That is New Zealand at its best.”

    • Carolyn_nth 9.1

      Ah. So the NZLP must be going after the NZ First vote?

      Regional rejuvenation, return of rail, etc, is very important for NZ’s future.

      • Kat 9.1.1

        Families, Children, Forestry, Hydro, Works, Rail, Fisheries, Maritime, Finance, Transport, Communications, Education, Health, Environment……….ALL VERY IMPORTANT TO NZ’s FUTURE……………….. YES?……. NO?

        And unless owned and managed by the people for the people (the many not the few) as it once was in this beautiful country then we achieve nothing.

      • Ian 9.1.2

        The facts show that irrigation schemes rejuvenate regional economies , and clean up the rivers. Look at whats happening in AShburton if you don’t beleive me.

        • One Anonymous Bloke


          I don’t believe you. You tell too many lies.

          • Jenny Kirk

            +100% OAB – what’s that stuff Trump does ? Alternative facts ! That’s what Ian is on about .

            • Pat

              It’s not a simple issue and it will likely push some off the land, particularly in Canty where irrigation has become endemic, however the farming community is nothing if not adaptable and should Labour be elected and this become policy the likes of Hort NZ et al would be better serving to seriously engage to make it as workable for its members as practicable….andas I understand it Labour have said the details won’t be nailed down until impacted parties have had an opportunity to put their cases.

              • Ian

                I don’t beleive it. Please explain . Irrigated areas in New Zealand have the best water quality.

                • Pat

                  you don’t believe what exactly?

                  • Ian

                    I don’t beleive how so called educated people can be so sucked into beleiving that irrigation is evil and should be taxed . Taxes are revenue collecting but are also used to change behaviour. The implication of this irrigation tax is that irrigation is bad.
                    A simpler explanation is that agravating the urban / rural divide is a vote catching excersise for labour

                    • Pat

                      Nothing wrong with irrigation per se unfortunately in this neck of the woods over allocations of an unquantified resource were given without consideration for the impacts coinciding with a slump in alternative income streams that resulted in a wholesale conversion to an unsuitable land use (sometimes against will and with prodding from banks)
                      and yes, (as a smoker) taxes are indeed used to modify behaviours, and the implication is that irrigation practice needs to be modified not ceased….its not a black and white world.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      It’s not about being sucked in – it’s about the crooks – your rightwing crooks who’ve been getting and trading water bottling rights for a song while everyone else pays through the nose for services. If the Gnats had had councils charge fairly for this new use you irrigators might’ve had a chance. You’re paying for the company you keep.

      • Jenny Kirk 9.1.3

        for goodness sake, Carolyn_nth – Labour has ALWAYS had a full set of policies (too much for many people!) to take to the country. Labour’s policies cover everything we can think of – from the basic health, housing, education, jobs, to looking after the environment, transportation in all its forms, justice, crime – the list is endless. We have always had a full range of policies – we’re not a one theme, nor a one slogan party.

        • Ian

          Policies require detail . The water tax is currently a slogan.

        • Carolyn_nth

          Will all of them be enacted by a Labour-led government?

          • lprent

            Sure. But the policies compete against each other for limited legislative time slots and budget. This means that everything gets done more slowly through government than people would like.

            When that doesn’t happen and we get a governmental revolution on our hands, it is usually in times of a great crisis like a war or a Muldoon and usually doesn’t have particularly good downstream effects. This is why it is better to evolve than be part of a revolution.

            • Carolyn_nth

              Many things can happen between election policy announcements, and getting all the announced policies into law. The unexpected, (like wars, natural and human induced disasters, newly perceived social and economic problems, etc.,) result in twists and turns that impact on the way legislation is developed.

              So, as well as looking at policies, I think it’s important to look at priorities and underlying values. When the unexpected happens, the underlying values will come into play and impact on decision making.

              For that reason, it’s important that no one party has too much power. MMP was set up so many things would be negotiated between parties in relation to on-going developments.

              • lprent

                Yep. I didn’t think so at the time, but I think that MMP has proved to be extremely useful at both moderating extremism, and allowing the unthinkable that has needed thinking about to come forward.

                Just as importantly I think that it has stopped our voter turnout from dropping like stone.

  10. Zeroque 10

    Yes, what a performance, well done.

  11. patricia bremner 11

    What I understood from today.

    Jacinda is smart and she is sending messages about hope change and future.

    She values all her tutors and colleagues and creates a team.

    Her grasp of GDP and the effects of it got me.

    Not balance sheets as success, but what it does for people to be the measure.

    She sees us positioning ourselves in the innovative green sector.

    That is a nod to the Greens in both areas, lifting us out of poverty of hope and

    working on improving the environment.

    She is inclusive.

    Further she will tackle the inequities for women and Maori.

    At the same time she is selling that the burden of change must be fair.

    Personally, I think New Zealand has found a gem.

    Jacinda doesn’t blame, she looks for a better inclusive way.

    New Zealand is incredibly fortunate.

    Now we have to work at moving forward together.

  12. Booker 12

    To me today said it all – a stunning speech from a leader with passion, who lives and breathes the history of the party, speaking to an overflowing venue about issues that really matter and strike a chord with many New Zealanders. And I have no time for Paddy Gower but he nailed it when he said that line about climate change being this generation’s nuclear-free challenge was a deft piece of political rhetoric- and why no one had pulled that out before?

    And on the other side of today: National promising, guess what, to build some roads, the same schlock they’ve been pulling for 9 years, as well as being taken to task about their long-overdue attention to healthcare in the south culminating in a PPP.

    People have criticized Labour in the past as being a National-lite party, and probably not without some justification. But today the difference couldn’t be more stark.

  13. That was truly spectacular , and Adern has shown herself to be a marvelous orator. Combining forceful delivery with a message of compassion , … she rated the human quotient above mere statements of economic ‘ good health’. For so long we have heard about having a ‘ robust economy ‘ , – but it means absolutely nothing if you do not measure it against how well the least well off are faring.

    And right now ,there are large sectors of our society that are suffering – severely.

    Her words on suicide , for instance, replacing the narrative and emphasizing ‘ love and hope’ instead of ‘ grief and loss’ . And using the standard of how well are the children doing being lifted out of poverty as a real indicator of how well our country is performing.

    That was a wonderful message emphasizing the economy as a tool for humanity to use for betterment, – not a master to be a slave under. We must have Labour and Jacinda Adern as its leader as the next government after the September 23rd election. Our future and present generations depend on it.

  14. roy cartland 14

    Very moving speech, an a good feeling of hope. God forbid we ever elect a PM that can pronounce Maori placenames (Wonga-nooey? Matter-matter?) She’s gotta get this sorted, if only for credibility.


    Roy This lady Jacinda is very highly gifted and highly intelligent as she didn’t run off script as many do.

    She is a pure natural orator and we look farward to many more uplifting speeches from her, as we reach the 23rd September when national will be swept out of power finally and given us back our country.

    All Jacinda now needs to ask the national elitists is ;

    “what next lot of our tax-paid public assets are you about to sell if re-elected”??

    Then you will hear a deaf silence!!!!

    • roy cartland 15.1

      I agree, but to me this is such a simple thing do do but has a great effect. And really, it’s expected of all public figures now unless they’re making the point to be ANTI-pronunciation. Like Bill.

  16. Tanz 16

    Went to Labour’s launch last time, was down at the viaduct, if my memory serves me correctly. The crowd was reasonable then. Don’t get why Jacinda is so much more popular than Cunliffe, he’s a very good speaker etc. History has moved on.

    • Muttonbird 16.1

      More people are fed up with uncaring, punitive, community-busting, reactionary, RWNJs running the country.

    • Robert Guyton 16.2

      “Don’t get why Jacinda is so much more popular…”
      Indeed. You won’t.

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