Missing voices

Written By: - Date published: 11:24 am, April 20th, 2017 - 39 comments
Categories: class, class war, us politics, war, workers' rights - Tags:

This is one of the voices we should also have been listening to and arguing about all these longs months. It’s well past time to get over hating liberals or rednecks, our only way out is to learn how to work and live together.

Former Trump supporter speaks Her Truth

*We’re all in this together. Please be kind to each other, the struggles are real*

39 comments on “Missing voices ”

  1. adam 1

    So it looks like the democrat’s could have won, if only they picked a candidate that was not a corporate lackey.

    Funny thing history, some people get to say I told you so.

    I told you so!

    • Barfly 1.1

      Yup I would have greatly preferred President Sanders

      • RedLogix 1.1.1

        While I’m on record here as being a 100% Sanders supporter, I’m also realistic enough to know that if he had won we would be witnessing another kind of political melt-down in the USA.

        • rhinocrates 1.1.1.1

          I agree with you RedLogix.

          A West coast ‘elite’ liberal atheist Jew would not have gained any votes among those who voted for Trump. Granted, he polled higher than Clinton initially amongst likely Democrat and independent voters, but Clinton used no attack ads against him and he never faced a campaign against him from the Republicans. They allegedly had a dirt file two feet thick even before Clinton was selected as the candidate. A lot of it wouldn’t have been ‘dirt’ from a liberal standpoint, but film of him stating approval for antiAmerican and socialist governments and movements would have been running 24/& had he been the Democratic candidate. That would have gone down like a cup of cold sick in the Midwest and the South, which is exactly where they needed to make gains.

          ‘Sanders would have won’ is delusional at best, and had he won, ‘Trumpism’ wouldn’t have magically evaporated. If anything, it would have been more virulent with even wider and overt anti-semitism.

          • weka 1.1.1.1.1

            Quite. But the point of the post wasn’t to rehash the US election, it was to look how to bridge the gulf between different parts of the community. I guess no-one thus far is actually interested in that 🙁

            • rhinocrates 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Good point.

              I’ve been watching a couple of films lately and while fiction, they present a culture and a situation and the writers/directors have their obvious and informed social commentary. One is Winters Bone and the other is the More recent Hell or High Water. Both presented a desolate social landscape abandoned or exploited by its institutions – portrayed as the banks – and people who were distrustful and resentful. Indeed, they’re fiction, but fiction that resonates with audiences because they see themselves there.

              Suggestions for healing the rift in America are going to have to be based on an empathy with the left behind, not by projecting New Zealand’s political norms and wishful thinking on to them.

              There is a huge split in American society, not just in economics, but in culture. Geographically it can be between the coastal states and the sneeringly-named ‘flyover states’.

              I don’t think that any one party can bridge that gap at a federal level. Ideally, a change to the two-party system would help, but realistically, without constitutional change, solutions have to be found nearer the bottom of the pyramid.

            • RedLogix 1.1.1.1.1.2

              Talking to Canadians about the USA is interesting.

              First up Canadians really do see themselves as a very separate nation, with radically different histories and values. They do … very politely … look across the border with considerable disdain.

              Mentioned many times is how very debased and dumbed down much of the US education system has become. And how it has now resulted in generations of very poorly educated Americans with very narrow and limited views of the world.

              And what a diverse and incoherent nation it has become; stark divisions between the coastal enclaves and the fly-over states.

              Also apparent is the profound impact their military has. While the RCMP is a visible and potent element of Canadian life; it’s a benign and modest influence compared to how the US Armed Forces have become almost central to the US way of life.

              The enormous prevalence of people living on prescription drugs, the insecurity, distrust in Federal govt, the religious fundamentalism, the costs of education and health, the homelessness and racism, the profound cultural chasms …. all speak to a nation where diversity has transformed from a strength to a threat.

              Yet the vast majority of ordinary Americans are decent, hospitable and generous. An American contractor whom I worked with closely for some weeks was an interesting, entertaining and very authentic character. He expressed some very deep reservations about his country, how it has transformed in his lifetime from something hopeful and idealistic, into a ‘death culture’ that causes him anxiety and despair.

              Is a healing possible? From where I sit right now, I’d be very surprised if it got any better before it got a whole lot worse.

              • rhinocrates

                Also apparent is the profound impact their military has… the US Armed Forces have become almost central to the US way of life.

                http://www.gallup.com/poll/1597/confidence-institutions.aspx
                https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/americans-dont-trust-their-institutions-anymore/

                Trust in institutions has crashed, with the notable exception of the military.

                A very interesting book is Rosa Brooks’ How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything

                Available as audiobook and dead tree. You’ll find various snippets of interviews and articles around the net.

                First Brooks looks at how when all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail (or a war), but the culmination of Brooks thesis (she’s a law and political science academic and former Pentagon staffer) is to compare the military with Wal-Mart. This is not facetious. One, The military is ubiquitous and provides services with basic competence, including employment welfare, medical care and education. Two, it’s ideal at none of these – but it’s the only one left offering them. Three, it’s an institution of service to the nation, as banks and government are no longer seen to be.

                Going back a bit, a military academic paper that caused stir in 1993 was ‘The Origins of the American Military Coup of 2012’ by Charles J. Dunlap Jr

                http://ssi.armywarcollege.edu/pubs/parameters/articles/2010winter/dunlap_jr.pdf

                http://www.theatlantic.com/past/politics/defense/coldunl.htm#

                Dunlap’s thesis is that the US was primed for a military takeover not by a civil war or factional coup, but by a military that was given too many previously civilian institutional tasks when public confidence in civilian institutions were in sharp decline. The takeover would occur almost by default.

                While the thought experiment is set in 2012, the conditions described by Dunlap seem all the more apparent today.

                A president who routinely humiliates the military and intelligence services (not only by denigration, but by misusing them for immediate political gain as in the case of the Syrian strike and the lie about the USS Carl Vinson) won’t help…

                • RedLogix

                  It’s already true the US military is heavily involved in education; for most working class people joining the military is one of their few options for getting a good technical education.

              • simbit

                No. Since emigrating to Canada from NZ, I see ‘North America’ as a single conglomerate. Your comment on the RCMP is profoundly ignorant – their violent institutional racism is well documented- and illicit drug use is clipping too many lives daily. Sure the southerners have some serious issues but it’s a continuum and NZ is on the same slippery slope.

                • RedLogix

                  Obviously there are many commonalities, but the differences are important too. Complex histories and all their nuances are not covered off in a blog comment of a few hundred words.

              • Chris

                “Mentioned many times is how very debased and dumbed down much of the US education system has become. And how it has now resulted in generations of very poorly educated Americans with very narrow and limited views of the world.”

                Sound familiar? Such an integral part of the neo-liberal agenda. “Gotta keep the truth from the masses otherwise nobody will believe us.” Try turning the TV on to see if you can’t find some kind of reality show happening right then. Bloody near impossible. This is us, folks.

            • Incognito 1.1.1.1.1.3

              Bridge builders appear to be a shrinking minority while dam busters seem to be growing in number and force. The sad thing is that often they see themselves on the right side of the truth and gaining almost hero status – in their own eyes. They are never wrong, they never doubt or waver, they are supremely confident, they make my hair stand on end …

          • rhinocrates 1.1.1.1.2

            EAST coast liberal!

      • saveNZ 1.1.2

        Yep, if Sanders and Clinton could play together equally in the sand box without Clinton (and her aids trying to take all), we would not be facing the Don!

        Also if they were in touch with normal voters, not just the Hollywood set and the more disadvantaged. Society is everyone rich, poor, black, white, men, women, unemployed, underemployed, employed, sick, retired, over employed! Have a message for a better society for all, not just snap shots of it!

    • dukeofurl 1.2

      One persons opinion validates your previous view . Really ?

      Trump merely had the better slogan

  2. Ad 2

    In the circumstances, Trump is the best renewal programme the Democrats could have wished for.

    Bring on the mid-terms.

    • Nick 2.1

      The Democrat elite are not much better as they are also corrupted……really hard to lower the bar so low, but trump has done it and taking the country down with him.

      • Ad 2.1.1

        The Georgia runoff is a really good start.

        • joe90 2.1.1.1

          Where Bernie ‘not a democrat’ Sanders is doing his best to undermine Ossoff.

          Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, in an interview Tuesday in Louisville, Ky., said he didn’t know much about Mr. Ossoff, a 30-year-old former House staffer. Mr. Sanders said he isn’t prepared to back Democrats just because of a party label.

          “If you run as a Democrat, you’re a Democrat,” he said. “Some Democrats are progressive and some Democrats are not.”

          Asked if Mr. Ossoff is a progressive, Mr. Sanders, an independent who challenged Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential primary, demurred. “I don’t know,” he said.

          https://www.wsj.com/articles/democrats-reload-for-georgia-runoff-but-party-divisions-remain-1492626238?tesla=y

      • dukeofurl 2.1.2

        Nick, you misunderstand the american political system. Its really really decentralised and through the primaries the voters choose the candidates AND the winner of the election.

        Braying on about democratic elite means nothing compared to NZ where financial members of the party ‘have some say’ in who their candidate is.
        People mostly register for one of the main parties or chose independent when they register to vote, thats it . No dues or such to pay.

        • red-blooded 2.1.2.1

          Duke, it costs $20 for someone in employment to join Labour, and $5 if you’re not in paid employment. I don’t think cost is the main factor for most people when they think about joining a political party in NZ. Plus, the primary system in the US is a big reason why the candidates need such deep pockets. While it looks very democratic, the effect is to cut out anyone but the independently wealthy or those with significant corporate backing.

          • dukeofurl 2.1.2.1.1

            I think you are still thinking of the 80s. They use the internet to bypass the corporate donors.
            Even Trump didnt need the usual GOP/ Corporate wealthy

  3. RedLogix 3

    On watching Hypernormalisation again last night, Curtis makes it plain … Trump is a shape shifter. Not in a physical David Icke fashion, but in the sense that Trump (and Putin) understand that in the modern and highly complex world, truth is almost entirely irrelevant. Instead they invent fake realities as they go along.

    This is why Trump can tell absolute blatant lies … and then apparently thrive on it …. because these are the tools he intentionally uses. When no-one is quite certain of what is real or not, everyone around him is a little back-footed, hesitant and unsure how to respond. Which creates the space in which the shape-shifter makes his next move in secret.

    It’s a very sophisticated dark magic show. Everything the magician says or does is about managing and diverting perceptions.

    • Stunned mullet 3.1

      Good analogy Red.

      I was always reminded of the ‘snake oil’ salesmen from the old cowboy movies whenever I watched a Trump rally on TV.

    • dukeofurl 3.2

      Historically Truth has changed over time, all thats different is for politicians, lying now has no real consequences

      Anyway as Einstein put it:
      ““Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth,”

      • RedLogix 3.2.1

        Curtis puts the case that it has gone beyond “lying has no consequences”. Politics as we have always known it is now redundant. The idea that a political ideology might make the world a better place is dead. A politician who claims truth and wants to want to make the world a better place is actively distrusted, mocked and hated.

        Now the lie IS the process; the fake reality IS the perception. That IS it’s power and we need to stop underestimating what we are up against.

        • greywarshark 3.2.1.1

          RedLogix
          It’s shocking what you say. And you give backing to your assertions.

          I was just reading Vladislav Surkov, Russian adviser.
          His chosen quote is from Nietzsche:

          We have art in order not to die from the truth.

          Seems to be the theme for the day.

  4. Keith 4

    Is it that US voters thought Trump, who does what he wants, was anti establishment, that he was for the ordinary and growing number of citizens left behind by “free trade”, their never ending wars and a government that is only interested in corporations and those with fat wallets who donate?

    How could it be that a rich man, a billionaire and worse one born into money would ever ever give a damn what they thought or wanted?

    I feel for the people of the US. They have been shit on by successive governments for almost as long as I can remember, probably from Regan onward at least. They deserve so much better.

    We had a taste of it here in Key and we are still trying to find a way past this.

    • garibaldi 4.1

      Keith says “I feel for the people of America”.
      I don’t.
      The Deep State in the USA has been in command since WW2 and they (the people) are too dumb to stop them. Time and again we have witnessed the stupid bloody yanks totally fuck things up. Your average American is nothing but an ignorant arsehole and they have got the government they deserve. Trouble is , the rest of the World doesn’t deserve America. Imo I think they are the number one threat to the World and it will be them that destroys us all.

      • RedLogix 4.1.1

        Time and again we have witnessed the stupid bloody yanks totally fuck things up. Your average American is nothing but an ignorant arsehole and they have got the government they deserve.

        Three things.

        Their education system is very fragmented, inconsistent and often very narrow in outlook. I would make the case that the moment you let the profit motive dominate an education system, is the moment you have begun to make the result largely worthless.

        Try to keep in mind that their political system is almost completely dominated now by financial interests, gerrymandering and a desiccated two-party system that ensures the votes and interests of ordinary people have almost no discernible impact on what actually happens.

        And their working lives are remarkably stressful. Most people are underpaid, over-worked, insecure and enjoy very little in the way of annual leave or personal dignity.

        Yet despite all the things we can say about the fucked up society they live in, most people are still remarkably generous and decent as individuals. I think it important to keep that distinction in mind.

      • Red 4.1.2

        Nut bar alert warning on above

        A Chinese, Russian dominated world would be much better US ain’t perfect but sure glad they dominate than the alternatives

        • garibaldi 4.1.2.1

          You don’t know that Red. You’re guessing, and your reasoning is questionable. The Americans have proven themselves to be the ultimate Nut bars.

          • RedLogix 4.1.2.1.1

            We can quibble the details, but I would argue that ultimately ALL empires are evil. Wherever power is unchallenged, unaccountable it will be abused.

      • Peter 4.1.3

        (I think they are the number one threat to the World and it will be them that destroys us all.)
        Could not agree with you more.

  5. rhinocrates 5

    America is Regressing into a Developing Nation for Most People

    A new book by economist Peter Temin finds that the U.S. is no longer one country, but dividing into two separate economic and political worlds
    You’ve probably heard the news that the celebrated post-WW II beating heart of America known as the middle class has gone from “burdened,” to “squeezed” to “dying.” But you might have heard less about what exactly is emerging in its place.

    In a new book, The Vanishing Middle Class: Prejudice and Power in a Dual Economy, Peter Temin, Professor Emeritus of Economics at MIT, draws a portrait of the new reality in a way that is frighteningly, indelibly clear: America is not one country anymore. It is becoming two, each with vastly different resources, expectations, and fates.

    https://www.ineteconomics.org/perspectives/blog/america-is-regressing-into-a-developing-nation-for-most-people

  6. Skeptic 6

    Two points from the comments above.

    1. Two of mty Professors at Canterbury were “runaways” from Reagan and stayed during the Clinton years. Both were Pols, but Jim Ocky’s leaning was anthropological, while Pat Regan was decision making. They had interesting views on the future of USA – some of which has come to pass – especially as a result of the wealth income gap over there (those of you who know the Manilla Study will be aware that when this gap reaches a certain point society fragments and revolution – violent revolution – follows in the historical fashion England 1640, France 1789, etc etc). Trump could very well be the last democratically elected President. Look at what happened to the Roman Republic after Julius Caesar. Jim & Pat said the USA had about 20 to 25 years – this was in the mid 90s. They’re spot on.

    2. The comment about the respect for the US military is a telling one. In every country where there has been a gradual and irreversible loss of interest in politics – or drastic polarisation in them, coupled with an inexplicable respect for military institutions, – i.e. people begin to trust their military ahead of their civilian leaders – there has been a military coup d’etat. Fiji is a classic example where military leaders are practically invited to take over whenever “those pesky Indians start running rough shod over native Fijian interests”. So were many South American countries in the 60s, 70s & 80s. Could the fate of Rome be about to be repeated in the USA and an actual American Empire be on the cards. Not beyond the realms of impossibility.

    Lets summarise:
    (a) We have a wealthy, immoral President who use nepotism and cronyism within his cabinet.
    (b) We have a large disaffected and marginalised “plebeian underclass” – almost slaves – wage slaves that is.
    (c) We have a well respected and well disciplined “legionary” – sorry, military-industrial complex – oops who said that.
    (d) We have a class of plutocrats who seem to be above the law – especially when it comes to buying up large areas of the Republic.

    Rome – 44 to 38 BC & USA 2017 to ??

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    A homeless person’s camp beside a blocked-off slipped damage walkway in Freeman’s Bay: we are chasing our tail on our worsening and inter-related housing, poverty and climate crises. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Existential Crisis and Damaged Brains

    What has happened to it all?Crazy, some'd sayWhere is the life that I recognise?(Gone away)But I won't cry for yesterdayThere's an ordinary worldSomehow I have to findAnd as I try to make my wayTo the ordinary worldYesterday morning began as many others - what to write about today? I began ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • A speed limit is not a target, and yet…

    This is a guest post from longtime supporter Mr Plod, whose previous contributions include a proposal that Hamilton become New Zealand’s capital city, and that we should switch which side of the road we drive on. A recent Newsroom article, “Back to school for the Govt’s new speed limit policy“, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 22

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:00 am on Monday, July 22 are:Today’s Must Read: Father and son live in a tent, and have done for four years, in a million ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 22

    TL;DR: As of 7:00 am on Monday, July 22, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:US President Joe Biden announced via X this morning he would not stand for a second term.Multinational professional services firm ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #29

    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 14, 2024 thru Sat, July 20, 2024. Story of the week As reflected by preponderance of coverage, our Story of the Week is Project 2025. Until now traveling ...
    4 days ago
  • I'd like to share what I did this weekend

    This weekend, a friend pointed out someone who said they’d like to read my posts, but didn’t want to pay. And my first reaction was sympathy.I’ve already told folks that if they can’t comfortably subscribe, and would like to read, I’d be happy to offer free subscriptions. I don’t want ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • For the children – Why mere sentiment can be a misleading force in our lives, and lead to unex...

    National: The Party of ‘Law and Order’ IntroductionThis weekend, the Government formally kicked off one of their flagship policy programs: a military style boot camp that New Zealand has experimented with over the past 50 years. Cartoon credit: Guy BodyIt’s very popular with the National Party’s Law and Order image, ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • A friend in uncertain times

    Day one of the solo leg of my long journey home begins with my favourite sound: footfalls in an empty street. 5.00 am and it’s already light and already too warm, almost.If I can make the train that leaves Budapest later this hour I could be in Belgrade by nightfall; ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • The Chaotic World of Male Diet Influencers

    Hi,We’ll get to the horrific world of male diet influencers (AKA Beefy Boys) shortly, but first you will be glad to know that since I sent out the Webworm explaining why the assassination attempt on Donald Trump was not a false flag operation, I’ve heard from a load of people ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    4 days ago
  • It's Starting To Look A Lot Like… Y2K

    Do you remember Y2K, the threat that hung over humanity in the closing days of the twentieth century? Horror scenarios of planes falling from the sky, electronic payments failing and ATMs refusing to dispense cash. As for your VCR following instructions and recording your favourite show - forget about it.All ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 20

    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts being questioned by The Kākā’s Bernard Hickey.TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 20 were:1. A strategy that fails Zero Carbon Act & Paris targetsThe National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government finally unveiled ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Pharmac Director, Climate Change Commissioner, Health NZ Directors – The latest to quit this m...

    Summary:As New Zealand loses at least 12 leaders in the public service space of health, climate, and pharmaceuticals, this month alone, directly in response to the Government’s policies and budget choices, what lies ahead may be darker than it appears. Tui examines some of those departures and draws a long ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • Flooding Housing Policy

    The Minister of Housing’s ambition is to reduce markedly the ratio of house prices to household incomes. If his strategy works it would transform the housing market, dramatically changing the prospects of housing as an investment.Leaving aside the Minister’s metaphor of ‘flooding the market’ I do not see how the ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted (Again!)

    As previously noted, my historical fantasy piece, set in the fifth-century Mediterranean, was accepted for a Pirate Horror anthology, only for the anthology to later fall through. But in a good bit of news, it turned out that the story could indeed be re-marketed as sword and sorcery. As of ...
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Friday, July 19

    An employee of tobacco company Philip Morris International demonstrates a heated tobacco device. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Friday, July 19 are:At a time when the Coalition Government is cutting spending on health, infrastructure, education, housing ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 8:30 am on Friday, July 19 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister Casey Costello orders 50% cut to excise tax on heated tobacco products. The minister has ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 19-July-2024

    Kia ora, it’s time for another Friday roundup, in which we pull together some of the links and stories that caught our eye this week. Feel free to add more in the comments! Our header image this week shows a foggy day in Auckland town, captured by Patrick Reynolds. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    6 days ago
  • Weekly Climate Wrap: A market-led plan for failure

    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items climate news for Aotearoa this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer. A discussion recorded yesterday is in the video above and the audio of that sent onto the podcast feed.The Government released its draft Emissions Reduction ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Tobacco First

    Save some money, get rich and old, bring it back to Tobacco Road.Bring that dynamite and a crane, blow it up, start all over again.Roll up. Roll up. Or tailor made, if you prefer...Whether you’re selling ciggies, digging for gold, catching dolphins in your nets, or encouraging folks to flutter ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Trump’s Adopted Son.

    Waiting In The Wings: For truly, if Trump is America’s un-assassinated Caesar, then J.D. Vance is America’s Octavian, the Republic’s youthful undertaker – and its first Emperor.DONALD TRUMP’S SELECTION of James D. Vance as his running-mate bodes ill for the American republic. A fervent supporter of Viktor Orban, the “illiberal” prime ...
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Friday, July 19, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:The PSA announced the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) had ruled in the PSA’s favour in its case against the Ministry ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to July 19

    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers last night features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s release of its first Emissions Reduction Plan;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor and special guest Dr Karin von ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #29 2024

    Open access notables Improving global temperature datasets to better account for non-uniform warming, Calvert, Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society: To better account for spatial non-uniform trends in warming, a new GITD [global instrumental temperature dataset] was created that used maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) to combine the land surface ...
    7 days ago
  • We're back again! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live

    Photo by Gabriel Crismariu on UnsplashWe’re back again after our mid-winter break. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Gut Reactions.

    Trump Writes His Own Story: Would the “mainstream” media even try to reflect the horrified reaction of the MAGA crowd to the pop-pop-pop of the would-be assassin’s rifle, and Trump going down? Could it even grasp the sheer elation of the rally-goers seeing their champion rise up and punch the air, still alive, ...
    7 days ago
  • Dodging Bullets.

    Fight! Fight! Fight! Had the assassin’s bullet found its mark and killed Donald Trump, America’s descent into widespread and murderous violence – possibly spiralling-down into civil war – would have been immediate and quite possibly irreparable. The American Republic, upon whose survival liberty and democracy continue to depend, is certainly not ...
    7 days ago
  • 'Corruption First' Strikes Again

    There comes a point in all our lives when we must stop to say, “Enough is enough. We know what’s happening. We are not as stupid or as ignorant as you believe us to be. And making policies that kill or harm our people is not acceptable, Ministers.”Plausible deniability has ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:The inside stories of KiwiRail’s iRex debacle, Westport’s perma-delayed flood scheme and Christchurch’s post-quake sewer rebuild, which assumed no population growth, show just how deeply sceptical senior officials in Treasury, the Ministry of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • What's that Jack Black?

    Ah-rah, deeSoo-guh-goo-gee-goo-geeGoo-guh fli-goo gee-gooGuh fli-goo, ga-goo-buh-deeOoh, guh-goo-beeOoh-guh-guh-bee-guh-guh-beeFli-goo gee-gooA-fliguh woo-wa mama Lucifer!I’m about ready to move on, how about you?Not from the shooting, that’s bad and we definitely shouldn’t have that. But the rehabilitation of Donald J Trump? The deification of Saint Donald? As the Great Unifier?Gimme a bucket.https://yellowscene.com/2024/04/07/trump-as-jesus/Just to re-iterate, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • June 2024: Earth’s 13th-consecutive warmest month on record

    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Jeff Masters and Bob Henson June 2024 was Earth’s warmest June since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was the planet’s 13th consecutive warmest month on record, NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, or NCEI, reported July 12. As opposed to being focused in ...
    1 week ago
  • Connecting the dots and filling the gaps in our bike network

    This is a guest post by Shaun Baker on the importance of filling the gaps in our cycling networks. It originally appeared on his blog Multimodal Adventures, and is re-posted here with kind permission. In our towns and cities in Aotearoa New Zealand, there are areas in our cycling networks ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • Webworm Down Under Photos!

    Hi,I wanted to share a few thoughts and photos from the Webworm popup and Tickled screening we held in Auckland, New Zealand last weekend.In short — it was a blast. I mean, I had a blast and I hope any of you that came also had a blast.An old friend ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:30 am on Thursday, July 18 are:News: Christchurch's sewer systems block further housing developments RNZ’s Niva ChittockAnalysis: Interislander: Treasury, MoT officials' mistrust of KiwiRail led ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Thursday, July 18, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Verbatim: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts held a news conference in Auckland to release the Government’s Emissions Reduction Plan, including ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The politics of managed retreat

    Climate change deniers are now challenging the Government over a key climate change adaptation policy. That begs the question of whether New Zealand First will then support Government moves to implement processes to deal with a managed retreat for properties in danger of flooding because of sea level rise and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Some changes are coming

    Warm welcome again to those who are here. The Mountain Tui substack was officially started on the 2nd of July. I wrote about what led me here on this post. Since then, it’s been a learning to navigate the platform, get to meet those in the community, and basically be ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 week ago
  • About fucking time

    The US Supreme Court has been rogue for years, with openly corrupt judges making the law up as they go to suit themselves, their billionaire buyers, and the Republican Party. But now, in the wake of them granting a licence for tyranny, President Biden is actually going to try and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: False accounting and wishful thinking

    National released their draft 2026-2030 Emissions Reduction Plan today. The plan is required under the Zero Carbon Act, and must set out policies and strategies to meet the relevant emissions budget. Having cancelled all Labour's actually effective climate change policies and crashed the carbon price, National was always going to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Enemies Of Sunshine And Space.

    Our Houses? The Urban Density debate is a horrible combination of intergenerational avarice and envy, fuelled by the grim certainty that none of the generations coming up after them will ever have it as good as the Boomers. To say that this situation rankles among those born after 1965 is to ...
    1 week ago
  • Still the 5 Eyes Achilles Heel?

    The National Cyber Security Centre (NZSC), a unit in the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) dedicated to cyber-security, has released a Review of its response to the 2021 email hacking of NZ members of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Britain's Devastating Electoral Slip.

    Slip-Sliding Away: Labour may now enjoy a dominant position in Britain’s political landscape, but only by virtue of not being swallowed by it.THE BRITISH LABOUR PARTY’S “landslide victory” is nothing of the sort. As most people understand the term, a landslide election victory is one in which the incumbent government, or ...
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why right wingers think all governments (including their own) are incompetent

    Since open denial of climate change is no longer a viable political option, denial now comes in disguise. The release this week of the coalition government’s ‘draft emissions reductions plan” shows that the Luxon government is refusing to see the need to cut emissions at source. Instead, it proposes to ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy this morning are:Chris Penk is set to roll back building standards for insulation that had only just been put in place, and which had been estimated to save 40% from power costs, after builders ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Open Letter to Pharmac

    All this talk of getting oldIt's getting me down, my loveLike a cat in a bag, waiting to drownThis time I'm coming downAnd I hope you're thinking of meAs you lay down on your sideNow the drugs don't workThey just make you worse but I know I'll see your face ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago

  • Kiwis having their say on first regulatory review

    After receiving more than 740 submissions in the first 20 days, Regulation Minister David Seymour is asking the Ministry for Regulation to extend engagement on the early childhood education regulation review by an extra two weeks.  “The level of interest has been very high, and from the conversations I’ve been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Government upgrading Lower North Island commuter rail

    The Coalition Government is investing $802.9 million into the Wairarapa and Manawatū rail lines as part of a funding agreement with the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA), KiwiRail, and the Greater Wellington and Horizons Regional Councils to deliver more reliable services for commuters in the lower North Island, Transport Minister Simeon ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Government moves to ensure flood protection for Wairoa

    Local Government Minister Simeon Brown has announced his intention to appoint a Crown Manager to both Hawke’s Bay Regional and Wairoa District Councils to speed up the delivery of flood protection work in Wairoa."Recent severe weather events in Wairoa this year, combined with damage from Cyclone Gabrielle in 2023 have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • PM speech to Parliament – Royal Commission of Inquiry’s Report into Abuse in Care

    Mr Speaker, this is a day that many New Zealanders who were abused in State care never thought would come. It’s the day that this Parliament accepts, with deep sorrow and regret, the Report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Abuse in Care.  At the heart of this report are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Government acknowledges torture at Lake Alice

    For the first time, the Government is formally acknowledging some children and young people at Lake Alice Psychiatric Hospital experienced torture. The final report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Abuse in State and Faith-based Care “Whanaketia – through pain and trauma, from darkness to light,” was tabled in Parliament ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Government acknowledges courageous abuse survivors

    The Government has acknowledged the nearly 2,400 courageous survivors who shared their experiences during the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse in State and Faith-Based Care. The final report from the largest and most complex public inquiry ever held in New Zealand, the Royal Commission Inquiry “Whanaketia – through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Half a million people use tax calculator

    With a week to go before hard-working New Zealanders see personal income tax relief for the first time in fourteen years, 513,000 people have used the Budget tax calculator to see how much they will benefit, says Finance Minister Nicola Willis.  “Tax relief is long overdue. From next Wednesday, personal income ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Paid Parental Leave improvements pass first reading

    Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden says a bill that has passed its first reading will improve parental leave settings and give non-biological parents more flexibility as primary carer for their child. The Regulatory Systems Amendment Bill (No3), passed its first reading this morning. “It includes a change ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Rebuilding the economy through better regulation

    Two Bills designed to improve regulation and make it easier to do business have passed their first reading in Parliament, says Economic Development Minister Melissa Lee. The Regulatory Systems (Economic Development) Amendment Bill and Regulatory Systems (Immigration and Workforce) Amendment Bill make key changes to legislation administered by the Ministry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • ‘Open banking’ and ‘open electricity’ on the way

    New legislation paves the way for greater competition in sectors such as banking and electricity, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Andrew Bayly says. “Competitive markets boost productivity, create employment opportunities and lift living standards. To support competition, we need good quality regulation but, unfortunately, a recent OECD report ranked New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Charity lotteries to be permitted to operate online

    Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden says lotteries for charitable purposes, such as those run by the Heart Foundation, Coastguard NZ, and local hospices, will soon be allowed to operate online permanently. “Under current laws, these fundraising lotteries are only allowed to operate online until October 2024, after which ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Accelerating Northland Expressway

    The Coalition Government is accelerating work on the new four-lane expressway between Auckland and Whangārei as part of its Roads of National Significance programme, with an accelerated delivery model to deliver this project faster and more efficiently, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “For too long, the lack of resilient transport connections ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Sir Don to travel to Viet Nam as special envoy

    Sir Don McKinnon will travel to Viet Nam this week as a Special Envoy of the Government, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced.    “It is important that the Government give due recognition to the significant contributions that General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong made to New Zealand-Viet Nam relations,” Mr ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Grant Illingworth KC appointed as transitional Commissioner to Royal Commission

    Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden says newly appointed Commissioner, Grant Illingworth KC, will help deliver the report for the first phase of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into COVID-19 Lessons, due on 28 November 2024.  “I am pleased to announce that Mr Illingworth will commence his appointment as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ to advance relationships with ASEAN partners

    Foreign Minister Winston Peters travels to Laos this week to participate in a series of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)-led Ministerial meetings in Vientiane.    “ASEAN plays an important role in supporting a peaceful, stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific,” Mr Peters says.   “This will be our third visit to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Backing mental health services on the West Coast

    Construction of a new mental health facility at Te Nikau Grey Hospital in Greymouth is today one step closer, Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey says. “This $27 million facility shows this Government is delivering on its promise to boost mental health care and improve front line services,” Mr Doocey says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ support for sustainable Pacific fisheries

    New Zealand is committing nearly $50 million to a package supporting sustainable Pacific fisheries development over the next four years, Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This support consisting of a range of initiatives demonstrates New Zealand’s commitment to assisting our Pacific partners ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Students’ needs at centre of new charter school adjustments

    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says proposed changes to the Education and Training Amendment Bill will ensure charter schools have more flexibility to negotiate employment agreements and are equipped with the right teaching resources. “Cabinet has agreed to progress an amendment which means unions will not be able to initiate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Commissioner replaces Health NZ Board

    In response to serious concerns around oversight, overspend and a significant deterioration in financial outlook, the Board of Health New Zealand will be replaced with a Commissioner, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti announced today.  “The previous government’s botched health reforms have created significant financial challenges at Health NZ that, without ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Minister to speak at Australian Space Forum

    Minister for Space and Science, Innovation and Technology Judith Collins will travel to Adelaide tomorrow for space and science engagements, including speaking at the Australian Space Forum.  While there she will also have meetings and visits with a focus on space, biotechnology and innovation.  “New Zealand has a thriving space ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change Minister to attend climate action meeting in China

    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts will travel to China on Saturday to attend the Ministerial on Climate Action meeting held in Wuhan.  “Attending the Ministerial on Climate Action is an opportunity to advocate for New Zealand climate priorities and engage with our key partners on climate action,” Mr Watts says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Oceans and Fisheries Minister to Solomons

    Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones is travelling to the Solomon Islands tomorrow for meetings with his counterparts from around the Pacific supporting collective management of the region’s fisheries. The 23rd Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Committee and the 5th Regional Fisheries Ministers’ Meeting in Honiara from 23 to 26 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government launches Military Style Academy Pilot

    The Government today launched the Military Style Academy Pilot at Te Au rere a te Tonga Youth Justice residence in Palmerston North, an important part of the Government’s plan to crackdown on youth crime and getting youth offenders back on track, Minister for Children, Karen Chhour said today. “On the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Nine priority bridge replacements to get underway

    The Government has welcomed news the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has begun work to replace nine priority bridges across the country to ensure our state highway network remains resilient, reliable, and efficient for road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“Increasing productivity and economic growth is a key priority for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Update on global IT outage

    Acting Prime Minister David Seymour has been in contact throughout the evening with senior officials who have coordinated a whole of government response to the global IT outage and can provide an update. The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet has designated the National Emergency Management Agency as the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand, Japan renew Pacific partnership

    New Zealand and Japan will continue to step up their shared engagement with the Pacific, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “New Zealand and Japan have a strong, shared interest in a free, open and stable Pacific Islands region,” Mr Peters says.    “We are pleased to be finding more ways ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New infrastructure energises BOP forestry towns

    New developments in the heart of North Island forestry country will reinvigorate their communities and boost economic development, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones visited Kaingaroa and Kawerau in Bay of Plenty today to open a landmark community centre in the former and a new connecting road in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • 'Pacific Futures'

    President Adeang, fellow Ministers, honourable Diet Member Horii, Ambassadors, distinguished guests.    Minasama, konnichiwa, and good afternoon, everyone.    Distinguished guests, it’s a pleasure to be here with you today to talk about New Zealand’s foreign policy reset, the reasons for it, the values that underpin it, and how it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Delivering 24 hour pothole repairs

    Kiwis and freight operators will benefit from the Coalition Government delivering on its commitment to introduce targets that will ensure a greater number of potholes on our state highways are identified and fixed within 24 hours, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Increasing productivity to help rebuild our economy is a key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Peer Support Specialists rolled out in hospitals

    Five hospitals have been selected to trial a new mental health and addiction peer support service in their emergency departments as part of the Government’s commitment to increase access to mental health and addiction support for New Zealanders, says Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Peer Support Specialists in EDs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan

    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset

    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • School attendance continues to increase

    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway

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