Laws needs an education

Written By: - Date published: 3:32 pm, November 9th, 2009 - 42 comments
Categories: education, feminism, scoundrels - Tags:

I told myself I’d never do a post on pathetic publicity groupie Michael Laws, so here I am failing to live up to yet another resolution. Sigh. But really, this can’t pass without comment:

Boys are failing, and feminism is at fault

One of the great triumphs of feminism is education. It is a profession now completely dominated by women and by feminine thinking. Early childhood education and primary schooling are dominated by women nine out of 10 teachers are female. It is also a profession that aims to imbue political correctness schooling being the method by which this social imperialism is imparted. I have no difficulty with education providing alternative views, but there is something dangerously monocultural about education today: one world view that dare not be challenged.

Consequently the latest research by the Ministry of Education on university bachelors’ degrees should not surprise. Almost two-thirds of undergraduate degrees are gained by women. Even in traditional specialist fields like law, medicine, accounting and planning, the majority of graduates are women. And that trend is increasing.

It used to be the conventional wisdom that girls developed earlier in education but then that boys caught up. That is no longer true. Boys are not catching up and the gap is getting greater. Boys are failing, and then failing some more. They are having opportunity stripped away every day. … But these criticisms aside, boys should still be doing better. Something is seriously wrong when the gender achievement gap accentuates with age, rather than diminishes.

But the issue remains. The Ministry of Education accepts boys are backward with regard to reading and writing and girls stay at school longer. But that’s it no new policy or funding. At Year 6, twice as many boys as girls will be in reading recovery something of a joke these days because it is so chronically under-resourced. Education Minister Anne Tolley drew the ire of teaching unions last month for directing that any new education funding needs to go into the basics reading, writing and maths. She might have gone further and also redirected non-basic streams especially at boys. But it’s a start. In the meantime, parents will still expect their children irrespective of gender to be getting a good, basic education in the nation’s state schools. Certainly, their daughters will. Too bad about their sons.

There’s a serious issue in there of course, and it should be explored by both educational experts and in the broader context of other societal changes and issues. But Laws does this process more harm than good by casting it as the fault of “feminism” (what is “feminine thinking” exactly?). In this piece Laws has simply clouded the issue with his own prejudice and insecurity.

42 comments on “Laws needs an education”

  1. trademark 1

    There’s certainly much that could be said about Michael Laws… but instead of going on about that, why don’t we talk about the issue: why are more boys failing and what can be done about it?

  2. SHG 2

    Summary: r0b agrees with Laws, but feels guilty about it.

    • Daveski 2.1

      Not that r0b needs any defence from me, but I’d feel guilty if I agreed with Laws too!

      As paraphrase Groucho Marx, who’d want to hold any political view expressed by Michael Laws (except paid up members of Lynchmobs-R-Us).

    • Ari 2.2

      Or perhaps he agrees that he’s got the facts right, but has absolutely no evidence on what is causing the problem.

      (Personally, I think some of it might have to do with the fact that women often need to be more qualified to land a given job than men, so there are different academic incentives operating here)

      • r0b 2.2.1

        Or perhaps he agrees that he’s got the facts right, but has absolutely no evidence on what is causing the problem

        As Ari says.

        The issue of a disparity in educational outcome for boys and girls exists, no doubt about that. When we understand the causes of this we will have an idea what (if anything) could be done about it. But to blame “feminism” makes about as much sense as the rest of Laws’ peculiar publicity-seeking ravings.

        For starters, is the fact that school teachers are overwhelmingly women a result of “feminism”, or good old fashioned sexism / sex stereotyping (women over represented in low paying jobs and caring professions). Cuss and discuss.

        • mickysavage 2.2.1.1

          Or a result of the sidelining of the profession by the continual attack on wages?

          IMHO teachers should be paid twice as much as accountants or stockbrokers or real estate agents but their pay is severely challenged and getting worse.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.2

          For starters, is the fact that school teachers are overwhelmingly women a result of “feminism’, or good old fashioned sexism / sex stereotyping (women over represented in low paying jobs and caring professions).

          I put it down to some old fashioned stereo typing and fear. The fear popped up in about the 1970s when everyone suddenly decided that all men were paedophiles. After that happened getting a job as a teacher for a man was pretty much a guarantee that you were going to have to defend yourself against unfounded accusations of impropriety and could also end in jail for something you didn’t actually do.

  3. Walter 3

    Mere Laws hit list seems to have grown, we now have:

    – Maori
    – Gang members
    – Beneficiaries
    – Youth
    – Anyone who disagrees with him
    – And now Women!

    So, who does that leave? – ahh…..those nice white middle aged businessmen.

    Well, as a white middle aged businessman myself, I’d like to say I’d rather spend time with any on the list above – over Mr. Laws. What a prick.

    • millsy 3.1

      No, I belive Jews will be next.

      Someone needs to start taking the fight to that piece of fascist scum. Personally I would throw a brick through his window if I could,

  4. George D 4

    The Feminist Conspiracy has also reached the heart of the Islamic Republic of Iran – 60% of university students there are female.

    • prism 4.1

      The Taleban in Afghanistan and various muslim states agree with Michael Laws! Perhaps he is bin Laden’s cousin – his appearance is rather unusual I’ve always thought. Of course states with education for girls also tend to rise up the wealth stakes – that is a regular statistic. Female school teachers may not be so good at coaching rugby though, and a bit prissy and middle class for robust boy education?

  5. Laws is attempting to be the first Kiwi “shock jock”.

    He is making as much sense as his American equivalents. For instance his claim:

    The Ministry of Education accepts boys are backward with regard to reading and writing and girls stay at school longer. But that’s it no new policy or funding. At Year 6, twice as many boys as girls will be in reading recovery something of a joke these days because it is so chronically under-resourced. Education Minister Anne Tolley drew the ire of teaching unions last month for directing that any new education funding needs to go into the basics reading, writing and maths.

    This highlights a major misunderstanding of the issue and why the teachers are so up in arms about Tolley’s proposal. The resources are being redirected away from teaching to running tests. There are absolutely no further resources to help with the kids the testing of who has shown they are lagging. And the teachers will have less time actually teaching them because they will be spending all of their time testing and marking and testing and marking and testing and marking …

    Tolley did not direct that new education funding goes into teaching. She did the exact opposite.

    • Roflcopter 5.1

      The resources are being redirected away from teaching to running tests. There are absolutely no further resources to help with the kids the testing of who has shown they are lagging. And the teachers will have less time actually teaching them because they will be spending all of their time testing and marking and testing and marking and testing and marking

      You need to go have a closer look at what teachers are complaining about. National Standards are about teachers making overall teacher judgements based on EXISTING testing already in place. It’s not about testing more.

      The teachers want more resources available to assist in making the overall teacher judgements for reading, writing & maths.

    • prism 5.2

      The Nats want a willy wonka factory system, where kids turn out square and uniform. Tolley makes much of parents not being informed but you don’t have to introduce another test to improve that.
      Kids developing their own learning after they have the basics might get us further with boys. Catching the attention of some to concentrate on the subject can be hard. I used to see a class in the school library supposedly researching for an essay. One boy spent the whole hour looking at motor magazines making engine noises. Gerald McBoing Boing? He may have been a special class student but some are not wanting to learn in the way that schools are run now.

  6. Chen 6

    “Well, as a white middle aged businessman myself, I’d like to say I’d rather spend time with any on the list above over Mr. Laws.”

    Did saying that give you a sense of smug moral superiority? Laws spends a lot of time mocking white middle aged men & their antics if you pay attention.

  7. Chen 7

    btw. I agree that blaming feminism for male underachievement is silly. Although perhaps a lack of male teachers is a factor?

    • Ari 7.1

      That, and probably a lack of kinestetic-style education where people can learn from touching and doing things without getting told they’re misbehaving.

  8. logie97 8

    Reading Recovery at Year 6. I think not Michael – they may been through the programme but it is for 6 year olds, not 10 and 11 year olds. When he is so ignorant of such facts so the rest of his argument probably fails as well. The man is not worth the read.

  9. vto 9

    I betcha Laws point about feminism being to blame has a part (a point is a point no matter how small) truth to it. Why wouldn’t it? It was a major movement some time ago and forces like that can take some time to work through a bunch of people like us. If it is a factor then whine and moan a bit and then acknowledge and get on with it.

    • Ari 9.1

      So what part of feminist philosophy is about leaving young boys behind?

      I’d have to say that any feminist I talk to about boys underachieving seems concerned, (and some of them are actually involved in solving the problem) so long as I don’t act like they’re soulless demons who are at fault for everything. 😉

  10. vto 10

    r0b, your post doesn’t say why what Laws says is dumbo jumbo, it just says it is. Why?

    • r0b 10.1

      I dunno, maybe someone dropped him on his head?

      No seriously – because:

      (1) “Feminism” addresses social, political and economic equality for women, it isn’t an educational theory and it doesn’t have a secret plan to take over and run education.

      (2) The dominance of women in teaching is not evidence of any feminist take over, it is evidence of longstanding gender based inequalities in the workforce and in pay.

      (3) There is no evidence (of which I am aware, not an expert) that female teachers damage educational outcomes for boys. (There may be evidence that male teachers as role models have other beneficial effects separate from educational outcomes, that’s a different matter).

      (4) There’s no evidence that the concepts of “feminine thinking” and “feminisation of education” are real enough to have any actual impact in the real world.

      (5) It’s not obvious (again, need to see the stats, bet Laws hasn’t) that the gender balance in the teaching profession has changed significantly in the last few decades.

      (6) Society has changed in many many ways in the last few decades that are much more significant than any slight change in teacher balance. (Perhaps video games make boys dumb.)

      (7) Right wingers love to rabbit on about individual responsibility for the poor and minorities and so on. But when their sons aren’t achieving suddenly it’s women’s fault? Phuhleaze.

      (8) Laws is a twerp.

      • RedLogix 10.1.1

        There is no evidence (of which I am aware, not an expert) that female teachers damage educational outcomes for boys.

        When I was in the primary schooling system 40 years ago, there were still a substantial number of male teachers, nowadays they are a small minority.

        Over the last 30 or so years both relatively and absolutely fewer young men are achieving compared to their female peers at University level.

        These two trends may or may not be causually related, but somehow I get the feeling no-one has done the basic research that could cast some real light on this question. In the meantime I suspect that it’s an open, and still valid question to ask.

        • Zorr 10.1.1.1

          I am choosing to enter the teaching profession to my own detriment. I have many friends trying to dissuade me from such a choice due to the fact that as a male teacher I will undoubtedly, at some point, have to deal with being accused of some impropriety. Despite this, and the continuing climate of uncertainty around the future of schools in this country, I am choosing to go in to teaching.

          Why? Because I want to. Because I have a very active desire to teach and help raise the next generation. Not everyone has this and the points I mentioned previously are enough to drive off most potential male teachers. To be a male teacher in this day and age, you either have to be very brave or very stupid… or maybe a little of both.

  11. Ron 11

    Fascinating that when boys fail it’s the system’s fault but when Maori fail – it’s their own fault.

    But further to the discussion – there seems to be a bit of disagreement about the stats. Just with the single sex school myth the rel problem (isn’t it always) seems to be socioeconomic. Educationalists do agree that boys READ less than girls but stats from three years ago showed the achievement gap closing in many sections of the curriculum.

    And how Tolley’s system is going to change this is a mystery. Boys do better in experimental, hands on style learning environment in which the piece together bits of the curriculum to achieve concrete goals. They do much less well is exam and test type environments.

    So once again Laws and his cronies basically don’t know what they’re talking about.

    captcha=logical

  12. RedLogix 12

    In my own primary/intermediate school days I had three male teachers and five female ones. My very clear recollection was that I made much better progress with the male teachers… while I had nothing but a miserable time with the female ones.

    I don’t know how many other men have had similar a experience, and I don’t imagine that it’s a universal one by any means, but it does seem to me that whereas girls generally do well with teachers of either gender, boys tend to do better with male teachers.

    I don’t see this as an ideological issue, nor any slight on the competence or commitment of female teachers; but with male teachers so rare in primary/intermediate schools I cannot help but wonder about the effect it is having.

  13. Dan 13

    The lack of male role models at schools may be part of the problem, but I think a more important problem is that there are many homes with no male model at home. Mum is the only authority figure, and instead of being the protective and caring and encouraging figure of motherhood, she struggles against the peer pressure of the adolescent male, and ends up pretty ineffectual.
    Don’t blame the feminisation of teaching: rather look at the jockism, the booze culture and the inane role models the media trots out where school success is demeaned.

  14. Cal 14

    The question for me is, if girls are smarter than boys, why do we still get paid less?
    Wonder what incredibly intelligent remark Lhaws has for that?

    And I agree with many people saying the lack of male role models is a problem, especially at primary school. All but one primary school and intermediate teacher I had was a middle-aged/elderly lady. I only really began to get male teachers at highschool, and it was usually about half and half there. I guess teaching primary doesn’t appeal to blokes.

  15. Cal 15

    Well if girls are smarter, how come we get paid less??

    And I agree with people saying that there aren’t enough male role models in school. I only had one male teacher up untill I was 13, the rest were old/middle aged ladies. When I got to high school, then it evened out to about half and half.

    • Ari 15.1

      Well if girls are smarter, how come we get paid less??

      Because your qualifications are undervalued. Because even being able to see that someone is female creates a bias against a candidate- women became far better represented in orchestras after blind auditions were introduced as a hiring practice in the USA, even though the interviewers had all thought they were being fair to female musicians previously. Sadly not all sexism is obvious or conscious.

      • prism 15.1.1

        After leaving school do boys lag behind girls in getting jobs and pay levels?
        On average women are paid less, but I think that also women are a greater proportion of part-time, casual, temporary workers. Sometimes that suits if they have children but the trouble is when they are able to go back to full time work and they can’t get a job that matches their qualifications. Refresher courses don’t always help. Many are definitely under-employed.
        Perhaps boys know that they can get jobs so don’t stress on the learning, and those that didn’t get a job or a good education didn’t have the right attitudes for either. Talking about educational deficiencies has been a crisis centre with the right for years. It’s well known that you can dramatise any portfolio and create an apparent crisis, and education is tailor-made for this as apart from the basics, each youngster has a different pathway.

        • Ari 15.1.1.1

          On average women are paid less, but I think that also women are a greater proportion of part-time, casual, temporary workers.

          And are still paid less than male workers in similar conditions.

          Likewise comparing women that take maternity leave to men who take extended sickness leave results in the same conclusion- women are generally underpaid across the board, and not as a result of their employment situations.

    • Strathen 15.2

      The cultural revolution hasn’t made it all the way to the top yet. What I mean is the people receiving the high paying jobs now, are the people that started their careers 30-50 years ago. In that era, most courses were still dominated by men.

      The reports now indicate the majority of students in the professional courses (accounting, law, doctors, dentists, etc) are female. This will indicate that in 30-50 years time the majority of those earning the high levels of pay will be female, most likely causing the opposite perception of females being paid less, as males will be paid less on average.

      I have an issue about the perception of females being paid less. Overall, yes. However with the studies I’ve looked at, once you compare averages per industry, they’re very much even. I’m well aware that different industries pay different amounts. When comparing wages, I do not see it accurate to compare what men earn in the financial sector with what women earn in the education sector. It distorts in my eyes. Perhaps I’m looking at the wrong studies, so if someone can provide me with a link, I’ll re-educate myself.

      • r0b 15.2.1

        I can’t find the link to the NZ study in a hurry – but in case Rocky doesn’t step in you could just start here:

        http://www.google.com/search?&q=paid+less+than+their+male+counterparts+in+the+same+job

        • Strathen 15.2.1.1

          Cheers r0b! Will go check it out now.

          edit: Not easy to find the NZ one, maybe Rocky could step in?

          Catchpa: girl

          • Strathen 15.2.1.1.1

            It appears the pay discrimination against women is a myth. Interesting article by someone who has published many books on the topic here: http://nzmera.orconhosting.net.nz/paygapwf.html

            “The pay gap, then, is not the problem. It is a reflection largely of family decisions that we may or may not wish to change. The law can still attend to discrimination, but not by starting with the assumption the pay gap means discrimination.”

            The other links I found from r0b’s stuff, also backed up my hypothesis in my previous post. I also did an extra search and still only found statistics that supported my claim. I found plenty of other stuff about there being a pay inequality, but none were backed by actual information/statistics/facts. They were more hyperbole than anything.

            However, my search is not exhaustive, someone may be able to get me to the correct place.

            Until that time, I my perspective has still only been influenced to the point that in the next 20-30 years, Women will overtake men in their take home pay as per the cultural revolution in the yesteryear. There is a lot of change, however pay discrimination is not just comparing overall pay packets, but looking at the vocations, hours worked, sacrifices made, and life choices of both sexes gives the reasons why there is a perceived pay inequality. Once you account for these, women predominantly get paid more than men.

            Catchpa: laws
            2 on topic in a row!

  16. hitmouse 16

    No-one has reading recovery at year 6, neither boys nor girls. Perhaps you meant age 6 or perhaps you meant twice as many boys would need it if it was available. The lack of funding for older students with reading difficulties is outrageous.

  17. Jared 17

    I had a similar debate with the welfare elect and womans rights officer elect after the AUSA elections about creating an Mens Rights Officer on campus to deal specifically with Mens Mental Health Issues, Mens Sexual Health Issues, and disturbing achievement levels only to be told that it was a male society and that males on campus had more “rights” and we didn’t deserve any representation, both welfare elect (john kingi) and WRO elect (Soriaya Daud) are current Princess Street Labour members. Neither would listen to reason when I tried to say that it would compliment the WRO officer, and AVP Joe McCrory told me it just wouldn’t work, even when Massey have a Mens Rights Officer that works well.

  18. Strathen 18

    I think this is quite an important step that men need to be taking. Because the changes are so slow and are bigger than generational, we cold find that men have been left behind, but by the time we realise, it will be too late.

    It’s already happening. Look at the number of women vs men graduating in the blue chip courses at varsity. In the next generation their will be inequality again. To prevent the cycle, we need to fix the balance now.

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  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    6 days ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    6 days ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    6 days ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    6 days ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    7 days ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
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    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter
    https://mailchi.mp/7d9133add053/closing-the-gap-october-2019-newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    1 week ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    1 week ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    1 week ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
    Fatal Contact: With the arrival of captain James Cook in October 1769, the islands of what would become New Zealand ceased to be the preserve of Polynesian navigators and settlers and became a part of both the world’s map and the world’s history.THE MAORI NATIONALIST assault upon the historical meaning ...
    1 week ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Transgender extremism, violence at work against feminist meeting at British Labour Party conference
    by Nick Rogers The debate around the meaning of sex and gender made an appearance at this year’s British Labour Party conference in Brighton. Women’s Place UK – an organisation that questions the demand that biological males who self-identify as woman should have access to women’s spaces, to all-women shortlists, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Rebelling in Wellington
    Yesterday I went down to Wellington to participate in the Extinction Rebellion protest. Its part of the latest global wave of XR actions, with actions happening all over the world. Some of those protests are massively disruptive: in Canada, XR is blocking major bridges, stopping people from getting to work. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘The Workshop’ – Report: Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform: A Guide to Strategies that ...
    The Workshop is a charitable trust for public good. The Workshop undertake research to find ways of communicating that will build support for the solutions that work to solve complex social and environmental problems. See their Report on Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform below. ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Exclusive language
    What is language? We generally assume that it a facility unique to humans, allowing us to share what’s in and on our minds. We can tell of our plans, our past exploits, our knowledge. It also allows us to lie. And yet there are vast numbers of people we can’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    1 week ago
  • April 2018 – Submission to the NZ Govt Tax Working Group
    You can read our submission HERE ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • 2018 – Submission to the NZ Government Tax Working Group
    Read our submission here ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Guardian: Poll shows DISASTER for Corbyn and the End of Times
    The Guardian - ever eager to forewarn of doom and disaster on the left - are leading with a new poll from Opinium, which puts the Conservatives 15% clear of Labour.Con 38% +2Lab 23% -1Lib Dem 15% -5Brexit 12% +1Green 4% +2This isn't good news, and it would be very ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How prostitution became the world’s most modern profession
    Being and Being Bought (Spinifex Press, 2013) by Kajsa Ekis Ekman  A synopsis and commentary of Chapters 1-2 by Daphna Whitmore Ekman, a Swedish journalist and critic, brings together a Marxist and feminist analysis of prostitution and surrogacy in this groundbreaking book She opens the discussion with a definition of ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Clever legal fellow on Scottish challenge to Brexit
    I make no claims to having much legal knowledge,  so I defer to those trained in this area.I am very much enjoying this twitter stream from m'learned friend in Edinburgh, deciphering the legal arguments around the Scottish court challenge to Boris Johnson, based on the charmingly obscure principle of Nobile ...
    2 weeks ago
  • An Open Letter From Closed Minds.
    Ivory Folly? The University of Auckland’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart McCutcheon, upheld the right of the radical nationalist group, Action Zealandia to exercise their freedom of speech – not matter how distasteful that speech might be. A wiser community of students and scholars would have nodded their agreement and moved on. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Extinction Rebellion members want to “eat babies”
    If you are not convinced terrorist Organisation ‘Extinction Rebellion’ is very, very dangerous – watch this video at one of their recent meetings. Not only is this obviously mentally ill Woman begging the other terrorists to promote killing and “eating” babies and children, if you watch carefully other members nod ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    2 weeks ago

  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Further details of Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit to New Zealand
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed further details on the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to New Zealand next month. Their Royal Highnesses will visit New Zealand from 17-23 November – their third joint visit to New Zealand and first in four years. They arrive in Auckland ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • O’Connor in Thailand to push for RCEP deal
    Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth and Minister of Agriculture, Damien O’Connor, heads to Thailand today to attend the final Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Ministerial meeting, as negotiations enter their final stages. “The RCEP Agreement would anchor New Zealand in a regional agreement that covers 16 countries, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Young Pacific people can access earning and learning opportunities in Hawke’s Bay, Otago and South...
    Pacific young people living in the Hawke’s Bay, Southland and Otago regions will have access to support services that have proved successful in helping young people find new earning and learning opportunities. “Tupu Aotearoa is about changing Pacific young peoples’ lives. Our young people are talented, they are smart, they ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Protecting wellbeing – ACC HQSC Trauma Forum
    Introduction As the Minister for ACC I thank you all for the work that you do supporting New Zealanders in their literally most vulnerable moments. From those who hold people’s lives in their hands, to the people who research technique, technology and trends, your work is highly valued. A special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ economy in good shape – notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch
    Notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch – Wednesday 9 October 2019 Today’s topic, “trends and opportunities for the New Zealand economy,” is certainly one getting a great deal of commentary at the moment. Looking across the media landscape lately you’ll notice we aren’t the only ones having this discussion. There ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • World Mental Health Day a reminder of the importance of mental health work
    Minister of Health Dr David Clark and Associate Minister of Health Peeni Henare say this year’s World Mental Health Day theme is a reminder of why the Government’s work on mental health is so important. “This year the World Federation for Mental Health has made suicide prevention the main theme ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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