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National identity

Written By: - Date published: 9:52 am, November 24th, 2014 - 49 comments
Categories: history, identity - Tags: , ,

I missed it at the time, but about a week ago the Waitangi Tribunal released a major report. The excellent Andrew Geddis was quick off the mark with a useful and challenging summary:

…the real money passage comes at pages 525-526:

Our essential conclusion, therefore, is that the rangatira did not cede their sovereignty in February 1840; that is, they did not cede their authority to make and enforce law over their people and within their territories. Rather, they agreed to share power and authority with the Governor. They and Hobson were to be equal, although of course they had different roles and different spheres of influence. The detail of how this relationship would work in practice, especially where the Māori and European populations intermingled, remained to be negotiated over time on a case-by-case basis. But the rangatira did not surrender to the British the sole right to make and enforce law over Māori. It was up to the British, as the party drafting and explaining the treaty, to make absolutely clear that this was their intention. Hobson’s silence on this crucial matter means that the Crown’s own self-imposed condition of obtaining full and free Māori consent was not met.

Wow – that sounds pretty major! The Treaty wasn’t actually the mechanism by which Māori accepted that the British Crown could take over running the motu known as Aotearoa/New Zealand!! Māori assumed that they would retain the capacity to make and enforce their own laws for themselves!!! What then flows out of that historical finding?

If we do accept that picture, then it really poses a challenge to us. Because if we want the story we’ve come to tell ourselves about the Treaty and what it means for who we are to be true, then we can’t just keep on keeping on as we’ve done. Nor can we resolve the breaches of the Treaty simply through payments of money, transfer of resources, and apologies. Rather, it calls for a more radical reworking of the sharing of power over at least some aspects of New Zealand between the Crown and Māori in order to make good the Treaty’s original vision.

And that, it seems to me, is the real importance of the Waitangi Tribunal’s Report and its conclusions. It provides us with a choice – you can either have your comfortable and ennobling history of the Treaty as the founding document of New Zealand, or you can have the current New Zealand State in which the Crown has the right to exercise ultimate sovereignty over all aspects of life within it. But you can’t have both.

There is much, much more. Go read Geddis’ full piece on Pundit, and plenty of other followup summarised by the comprehensive Bryce Edwards.

It is not likely that John Key, with his fantasy version of NZ history, will be interested in acknowledging the ramifications of this finding. Instead we will have an expensive and superficial circus about our flag. But when it comes to the matter of our national identity, this really is a defining issue. Exploring it will be up to some future government.

49 comments on “National identity”

  1. Enough is Enough 1

    This really opens the door for the Maori party and the opportunity to give themselves relevance.

    National have ignored this and Labour will be too scared of upsetting the “Waitakere Man” to do anything meaningful.

    The Maori party can jump on this issue, cut their ties with the government and create a real movement.

  2. Sanctuary 2

    What is the point of this report? It is a complete waste of taxpayers money. What possible useful outcome does it serve?

    I guess that this ruling is of interest to those on the treaty gravy train, ivory tower academics and give false hope to various assorted Maori sovereignty advocates but it forgets that while de jure is all very interesting, de facto is what counts when the rubber hits the road. For example, Gerard Omiti might claim his Maori passports are valid, but he’ll still go to jail for fraud and the dupes who buy his passports will still get deported for overstaying.

    • weka 2.1

      Telling the truth, yep a waste of time. /sarc

    • You have absolutely no idea what goes on at the tribunal or the supreme importance of it if you think it’s a gravy train.

      I don’t think I’ve ever seen another workplace with that much unpaid overtime being clocked in, it’s played a critical part in truth and reconciliation for Maori, and the settlements proposed have done a good shake at evening up the economy and making New Zealand a fair place to live. I don’t see how you can look at the overall work the Tribunal has done with anything but pride if you’re:

      a) Aware of the actualities of New Zealand history.
      b) Not some flavour of denialist regarding structural racism, ie. you acknowledge that due to the way colonisation happened in New Zealand that Maori are dealing with great historical injustice and in many cases economic and/or political disadvantage.

  3. weka 3

    One of the significances here is that the middle class commentariat will now push for discussion about this more broadly. Māori of course have been talking about this for a long time. Hopefully this will be a second wave of decolonisation where more Pākehā start to take it seriously after all the work that was done in the 80s.

    • Sanctuary 3.1

      “…Hopefully this will be a second wave of decolonisation…”

      Maori need to once and for all forget any idea they can turn the clock back and create some sort of proto-racist parallel state permanently anchored in some pie-eyed interpretation of the past.

      Take a walk down Queen street or go to the Avondale markets. Bi-culturalism is extinct in the wild and exists only a dangerous myth in the rarified airs of our ruling elites. Many fourth, fifth and sixth generation Pakeha now feel as much or more part of this land as any Maori. The idea that Maori have any stronger prior claim is regarded by many Pakeha as culturally offensive.

      If it was ever put to a popular vote the whole treaty settle process would be shut down yesterday. That is the political reality. The whole treaty settlement process was imposed by elite consensus on a reluctant population on the basis that a medium term exercise to right the wrongs of confiscation and losses of colonisation was essential in order for us to peacefully move forward as a nation. That deal should not be usurped by trouble makers and Maori sovereignty advocates intent on trying to alter the results of the Land Wars by litigation.

      The government needs to be clear. The settlement of New Zealand by non-Polynesians since 1840 is irrevocable. The universal suffrage and the absolute sovereignty of parliament are not negotiable.

      Dwelling in the past to suggest otherwise is to play a very dangerous game. In an age where right wing populism as a reaction to an imposed elite economic consensus is on the rise does anyone really want to offer a political opportunity to anyone willing to grab it a chance to mobilise one-nation Pakeha nationalism against emboldened Maori sovereignty radicals? No good would come of that, mark my words.

      • RedLogix 3.1.1

        The extraordinary thing is how the report simply stops at the point of saying that Maori never signed away sovereignty. Well there is the promise of a further report at some time in the future – but in doing so it leaves far more unsaid than said.

        By definition there can only be one supreme sovereign authority in a nation. It is in fact more or less the definition of a nation. By this statement therefore the Tribunal is implying that the Crown never obtained legitimate and supreme sovereignty.

        You have to wonder why they could bring not themselves to just say this.

        • The Tribunal can’t prove a negative, they can only disprove a positive. They can say that the Crown did not negotiate its sovereign authority through the Treaty. It’s not actually their place to say that the Crown has no sovereignty, as it’s only in their remit to provide information and guidance on what the treaty says.

          (And also as a crown agency they would be making a bit of a paradox in drawing that conclusion, as if a crown agency says the crown has no legal standing in New Zealand, if they are correct, neither does their own ruling)

          IMO they stopped at the correct point. It is for constitutional scholars and news sources to then go “oh, the Treaty doesn’t do what the Crown totally thought it did. Maybe we should reconsider our constitution.”

          • RedLogix 3.1.1.1.1

            Thank you.

            • Tracey 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Red

              The legal aspects which include matthews explanation above and one I have been trying to make are of at least equal importance as the historical observations you have been making. Unless we understand ALL aspects we run the risk of making the matter worse notwithstanding good intention.

              • RedLogix

                While Mathew’s comment is useful and logical – it clearly states that it is not the whole answer. He explicitly says that there is a whole lot of important matters left unsaid.

                So given that the Tribunal has not given us a whole answer – and Mathew has explained why – who do you think will?

      • marty mars 3.1.2

        “Maori need to once and for all forget any idea they can turn the clock back and create some sort of proto-racist parallel state permanently anchored in some pie-eyed interpretation of the past.”

        This does seem to be the big fear for some but really it isn’t based upon any facts or logic imo. The clock can’t be turned back and I cannot hear voices asking for it to be turned back. But we can go forward as the quoted portion of the report says,

        “The detail of how this relationship would work in practice, especially where the Māori and European populations intermingled, remained to be negotiated over time on a case-by-case basis.”

        “negotiated over time” – key phase there that should allay any fears.

    • Tracey 3.2

      did you get a chance to read my suggestion yesterday for an elected maori president to replace governor general?

      everyone votes but only maori candidates can stand. like a monarchy figurehead. not just anyone can be king or queen of England.

      would this be of any use as a way to publicly and constitutionally try and restore mana and honour this aspect of the treaty?

      not meant as lipservice … or patronizing or the only change needed

      • RedLogix 3.2.1

        No I didn’t spot it. But it’s a fine suggestion. I don’t see it as lipservice at all.

        Another one I would like to see is moving Guy Fawkes to Matariki. It’s not original idea but would be a decent small step in the right direction. Symbolic yes – but even the debate it would arouse would be worth having.

        • Tracey 3.2.1.1

          thanks. i meant the question weka in particular but dont mi d who else replies

        • Mr Nobody 3.2.1.2

          Why move Guy Fawkes which would cause a big wah wah. Why not just celebrate both?

          One difference I would make though is make Matariki an official public holiday.

          • RedLogix 3.2.1.2.1

            That’s the point – it would be a big wah wah – but a completely symbolic one. It might shift a lot of people’s thinking.

            • Mr Nobody 3.2.1.2.1.1

              I think you would find you would simply end up turning a lot of people off and adding to the “conflict” between NZ’s various cultures.

              By leaving Guy Fawkes alone you affect nobody however by recognizing Matariki and making it a public Holiday a instead enshrine it as being more significant add to the Kiwi culture.

  4. Weka any “second wave of de-colonisation” while have to take its chances against a ” second wave of re-colonisation” of NZ by US and China.
    Practically the Maori Party will have a marginal advantage in picking up crumbs under the Cabinet Table on behalf of the Iwi Leaders Forum.
    Most Maori will miss out as iwi leaders these days disregard most Maori.
    That will leave most Maori open to lining up with the rest of us to fight the title bout.

  5. Ross 5

    Whatever.

    None of this hot air matters. What happened in the past happened in the past in accordance with the customs of the time. That there was any kind of treaty was utterly against the custom of the time. That is the relevance of the treaty, not who did what to whom and who didn’t pay. There was a treaty. End of story. On the Maori side at the time, for example, there was this type of thinking:

    …having arrived in Wangaroa we took possession of the land in accordance with our customs, and we caught the people. We caught all the people, not one escaped, some ran away from us, those we killed and others were killed but what of that. It was in accordance with our custom.

    Wi Naera Pomare

    …talking about the taking of Rekohu/Wharekauri/Chatham Islands and the slaughter of the Moriori. That was British custom too. That’s how we lived our lives in the nineteenth century. That is how the British were still conducting themselves in Australia at the time. Yet here we had at least the attempt of a treaty. I don’t believe the process was as cynical as others say. If there was no intention of honoring a treaty, then why bother with one at all? It was still the custom of the time to simply slaughter and take.

    There was a treaty conceived, composed, translated, debated and agreed to. As far as I know this was the first time in human history that this had happened. Now you’re telling me that there were mistakes? Duh. Whatever. There was a Treaty!!!!.

    BY endlessly arguing over the minutiae of events that are long in the past we are condemning ourselves to live there. Where we are now and how we all move on from there, that is what deserves a real money passage on pages 525 – 526 of a heavily funded government report.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1

      🙄

    • RedLogix 5.2

      It was still the custom of the time to simply slaughter and take.

      But that is not the whole story Ross. I’ve spent a fair bit of time annoying people here by re-visiting the Musket Wars – and been thoroughly beaten up for it.

      But my reason in doing so was not to diminish Maori in any sense (the merest glance at European history tell us that Pakeha have not the slightest scrap of moral high ground to posture from either – war, rape and pillage was a commonplace). But the most interesting thing is that by 1840 – reading the accounts of Colenso about the signing of the Treaty – reveal a very real desire by the Rangitira to make a break with this dark past.

      This combined with their very real interest in Christianity, in developing commerce and trade with the wider world can be read as a peoples in the midst of very rapid change – and looking for ways to adapt.

      In that sense I believe the Treaty was conceived in good faith by both sides.

      • Ross 5.2.1

        Too often this discussion devolves into us against them. You are right. I didn’t mean to imply any fault in Maori by using the quote. It is simply the best expression of the thinking of the time, by both sides, that I have ever read. Both sides were looking for a better way. The changes Maori went through in adapting to the new realities were incredible achievements and should be lauded in our history. That the British were also coming to their senses and understanding that taking was inefficient, ruinously expensive and unnecessary – quite apart from just plain wrong – is another golden element of our (shared) history. We have always prided ourselves in leading the way in the world. Why do we choose to continually devalue and trash this world first: the treaty.

        • Tracey 5.2.1.1

          by beaten up… he means disagreed with

        • marty mars 5.2.1.2

          No Ross it isn’t the best description imo

          “It was still the custom of the time to simply slaughter and take.”

          This is just not true, for instance marriage was a time honored, traditional, successful way to co-join different peoples – it worked because of the pulling together of whakapapa and the desire to not simply slaughter and take.

          red – you were the one that was annoyed because your analysis was not agreed to by some.

          • Ross 5.2.1.2.1

            Mm,

            …having arrived in Wangaroa we took possession of the land in accordance with our customs, and we caught the people. We caught all the people, not one escaped, some ran away from us, those we killed and others were killed but what of that. It was in accordance with our custom.

            Wi Naera Pomare

            • marty mars 5.2.1.2.1.1

              Yes Ross I read that thanks.

              There are numerous examples where members of an attacking force let those about to be attacked know so they could escape – that was in accordance with custom too. I know, shock horror there were quite a few customs – sometimes contradictory, sometimes overlapping, and sometimes beyond our understanding – imo cultures are often like that.

            • RedBaronCV 5.2.1.2.1.2

              Not all of them were killed Ross – personally I’m the product of some “in the bushes” activity in that geographical area.

              They also adapted their customs- in the annual raiding party (away match between Northland & Auckland) Ngapuhi had guns first so the Auckland tribes ran away. To even the score Ngapuhi used to ship Henry Williams the missionary with them. Once the firing stared Henry would get up and with much Korero talk them all out of it – so mana was maintained all around. I’m sure that great trouble was taken not to hit the referee…

    • Tracey 5.3

      yea lets just argue english law instead

      contra proferentum

      Discuss

      • RedLogix 5.3.1

        Because logically you can only have one supreme source of authority in a nation, either:

        1. The Crown based NZ State is the sovereign power de-facto.

        OR

        2. Maori never signed away sovereignty in 1840 and therefore have been the legitimate power in this country all the time since.

        It really has to be one or the other. A binary choice. Is anyone realistically suggesting that NZ is actually a nation with two separate sovereign powers that are co-existing at the same time?

        The standard ToW interpretation of a partnership between Maori and the Crown is ruled out by option 2 above – because in that scenario the Crown does not exist as the supreme authority, nor can any of the system of legal governance that flows from it have any legitimacy. (We discussed these definitions earlier.)

        A legal system is a component of governance. It does not exist in isolation. Legitimacy of governance derives entirely from the authority of the sovereign power it is dependent on. If that is lacking – then pointing to a legal principle which is part of it carries no weight. It would be like pointing to say the American 2nd Amendment as a legal defense in a New Zealand Court.

        In other words the principle of contra proferentum is useful principle (and a very good one at that) only as long as you are operating in a governance where it applies. But here in this case we are applying it in a situation which takes that applicability away – and the whole thing vanishes up a logical rabbit-hole.

        That is not the whole story – but it is a consistent and reasonable response.

        • marty mars 5.3.1.1

          “It really has to be one or the other.”

          except the report says,

          “They and Hobson were to be equal, although of course they had different roles and different spheres of influence. The detail of how this relationship would work in practice, especially where the Māori and European populations intermingled, remained to be negotiated over time on a case-by-case basis.”

          I struggle to see why that is so difficult to understand.

          • RedLogix 5.3.1.1.1

            That’s fine – you’re going for the two equal, peer type sovereignties. It’s not so hard to understand when the Treaty was signed in 1840 because at that time Maori and Pakeha societies were very distinct. It was quite feasible to see them as separate.

            No doubt each Rangatira signed in the full expectation that he would retain his mana over the iwi he was responsible for, the people, resources and so on.

            And that the Crown would have the same role regarding the Pakeha.

            But given the enormous changes, the complete intermingling of peoples since – – I honestly struggle to see quite how that works in 2014. Maybe I’m just lacking imagination.

        • I’d note that the treaty does still grant the crown Kawanatanga, however you interpret that, so it’s not correct to say that Maori are the only legitimate legal authority in the country.

          To be honest anyone who’s read an accurate translation of the treaty has known this whole time that legally, we’re in an interesting gray area, where Maori signatories have agreed not to exercise sovereignty over European citizens of New Zealand, have agreed to allow some settlement within legal limits, but have not ceded their own rights as people or as chiefs, only accepted a similar chiefly authority to be placed over european citizens and to have to deal with that authority as equals. (You could argue that our modern representative government works somewhat similarly to this in practice)

          Where we go from here is a question that can and should only be answered by an unbiased constitutional review that is ready and willing to shake up the New Zealand government if it’s the correct thing to do.

          • RedLogix 5.3.1.2.1

            Given that iwi are the largest social unit in Maori society and that in 1840 the Rangatira almost certainly did not imagine they were surrendering the slightest scrap of mana to any other iwi – then how many separate sovereigns do you think exist in this country at the present time?

          • Tracey 5.3.1.2.2

            Matthew, thanks for yourcontributions.

            I have suggested a Maori President elected by all registered voters to replace the govenor general. Not by any means as a pancea but to begin the acknowledgement and restoration of mana aspect.

            I also wondered about a kind of version of a house of lords with jurisdiction limited to certain matters, subordinate to parliament but with certain voting rights.. And thereafter the removal of Maori seats but not the Maori roll.

        • Tracey 5.3.1.3

          You may proclaim your version a consistent and reasonable response but that doesnt make it so.

          In order to ascertain the legal validity of the Treaty, to ascertain who gave or received what, you apply the legal principles. That is what the Waitangi Tribunal has done. It has used historical analysis and legal principle including contra proferentum to determine that Maori did not cede sovereignty.

          You are, with respect confusing yourself. The analysis is to determine what the treaty granted or removed or whether it had any validity at all. The conclusion is sovereignty was not given away.

          You appear to be taking the conclusion, removing the Treaty as a result, and applying an historical matrix to suggest that sovereignty was given because it helped both sides.

          Your questions about where to now, in practical terms, imo, is a crucial one, but your prior analysis I believe is flawed.

  6. coaster 6

    What a potential mess and disaster for nz. Some stones shouldnt be looked under and this is one.

  7. adam 7

    So the war that starts 5 years after the signing of the treaty makes more sense to white NZ now?

    I live in hope.

    People don’t start wars for the hell of it, the New Zealand wars did not roll on for 60 odd years because Maori are a warrior culture bent on making war. The wars were like many colonial wars, wars for survival. Because at the end of the day, land = resources = power.

  8. DS 8

    If the Maori Chiefs did not cede law-making power in 1840, then the New Zealand Parliament as it currently operates is illegitimate. If the New Zealand Parliament is illegitimate, the Treaty of Waitangi Act 1975 is illegitimate. If the Treaty of Waitangi Act 1975 is illegitimate, then the Waitangi Tribunal itself is illegitimate – for what is the Waitangi Tribunal but a creation of Pakeha Power which they shouldn’t have had? If the Waitangi Tribunal is illegitimate, it lacks the authority to determine whether the Maori Chiefs in 1840 ceded sovereignty.

    All in all, a nice little paradox.

    • Tracey 8.1

      If you continue your circle, not only the tribunal doesnt exists but neither do any prior laws including confiscation of maori land, so back it all goes. You cant ring off your paradox at a position convenient to a certain view.

      • DS 8.1.1

        Of course the land grabs would be illegitimate. It’s just that there would be no-one with the authority to call them so, including the entire court system and the Waitangi Tribunal.

        The Tribunal really is trying to have its constitutional cake and eat it too.

  9. Paul 9

    Do you support NZ’s involvement in the TPP agreement?
    The Herald is asking for your views and comments
    Presently 6 in favour , 38 against.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11363630

  10. Dont worry. Be happy 10

    Hold your noses and visit the Herald. They are running a poll on whether NZ should sign the TPPA.

  11. I personally think that at the end of the day, whoever takes the seat just needs to put a little effort and compassion into his work and look out for all the people that he can. I mean a lot of this nonsense that they’re debating on comes from arguments that should be left in storage a long time ago instead of being constantly dragged out to no solution…

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    Farmers held a hate-march on Parliament today, complete with MAGA hats, gun-nut signs, and gendered insults. While supposedly about a grab-bag of issues - including, weirdly, mental health - it was clear that the protest was about one thing, and one thing only: climate change. And specifically, forestry "destroying" rural ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The IGIS annual report: Dead letters and secret law
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security released their annual report today, and I've been busy reading through it. In amongst the usual review of what they've been doing all year, there's a few interesting bits. For example, a discussion on "agency retention and disposal of information", which points out that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A referendum on bigotry
    The End of Life Choice Bill passed its third reading last night, 69 - 51. Thanks to a compromise with NZ First - which looks to have been necessary on the final numbers - the commencement of the bill will be subject to a referendum. Given the ugliness of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Political parties and GMOs: we all need to move on
    Recently more than 150 post-graduate students and young scientists presented an open letter to the Green Party via The Spinoff, encouraging them to reconsider their position on genetic modification. Their target is tackling climate change issues.[1] Can any party continue to be dismissive about genetic modification (GM) contributing to ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    6 days ago
  • Class, Identity Politics and Transgender Ideology
    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    1 week ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    1 week ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    1 week ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    1 week ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    1 week ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    1 week ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Too Late To Change Capitalism’s Flightpath?
    Collision Course? In conditions of ideological white-out, the international bankers’ “Woop-Woop! Pull Up!” warning may have come too late to save global capitalism.WHAT DOES IT MEAN when international bankers are more willing to embrace radical solutions than our politicians and their electors? At both the International Monetary Fund and the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whooping cough vaccine works well despite its imperfections
    Pertussis (whooping cough) is a conundrum. It is a disease that was described hundreds of years ago and the bacteria that causes it (Bordetella pertussis) isolated in 1906. We have had vaccines for about 80 years but this disease is defiant in the face of human immunity. I wanted to ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Passed
    The Zero Carbon Bill has just passed its third reading, uanimously. In the end, National supported it - but we all know they'll turn around and gut it the moment they regain power. Meanwhile, I guess ACT's David Seymour didn't even bother to show up. I am on record as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Retailing of vaping products – New NZ Research
    Dr Lindsay Robertson, Dr Jerram Bateman, Professor Janet Hoek Members of the public health community hold divergent views on how access to vaping products or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) products should be arranged. Some believe ENDS should be as widely available as smoked tobacco and argue for liberal ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Justice for Bomber
    When the Police were trying to cover up for the National Party over Dirty Politics, they went all-in with their abuses of power. They illegally search Nicky Hager's house, violating his journalistic privilege and invading his privacy. They unlawfully acquired Hager's bank records. They did the same to left-wing blogger ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Britain’s climate tyranny was unlawful
    Last month, in response to a wave of protests by Extinction Rebellion, the British government purported to ban their protests from the whole of London. It was a significant interference with the freedoms of expression and assembly, and another sign of the country's decline into tyranny. But now, a court ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • More crime from the spies
    Last year, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security reported on significant problems with the intelligence warrant system. While they were unwilling to declare any warrant "irregular" (meaning unlawful) due to the recent law change, they were also not willing to give the system a clean bill of health. Now, they've ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Vaccination, compulsion, and paternalism for the lower orders
    The National Party has come out in support of encouraging greater vaccination uptake. But it sure isn’t the way I’d do it. National’s suggested docking the benefits of those on benefit whose kids aren’t keeping up with their vaccinations. Some in National have suggested extending that to payments under Working ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Protests Rage On: But Slogans Are Not Plans.
    Feeding The Flames: It is simply not enough to demand an end to “corruption”, or “inequality”, or the overbearing influence of the authorities in Beijing. These are just “lowest common denominator” demands: the sort of slogans that pull people onto the streets. They are not a plan.WHERE’S THE PLAN? Across ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 11,000 employed under Labour
    The labour market statistics have been released, and unemployment has risen to 4.2%. There are 115,000 unemployed - 11,000 fewer than when Labour took office. In that time the minimum wage has gone up by $2 an hour, which shows that the right's fears about increases causing unemployment are simply ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Boycott this democratic fraud
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has called for submissions on Andrew Little's tyrannical Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill. Normally I encourage participation in the democratic process. I am not doing so in this case. Instead, I encourage all of you to boycott this submissions process, and to post ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Mars is cold despite an atmosphere of mostly carbon dioxide
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz If tiny concentrations of carbon dioxide can hold enough heat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Ban private jets
    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago

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

  • Clamp down on wheel clamping passes third reading
    New rules to clamp down on overzealous wheel clamping and extortionate fees charged in order to release a vehicle have passed their final stage in Parliament today. The Land Transport (Wheel Clamping) Amendment Bill has now passed its third reading. “These changes mean $100 will be the maximum wheel clamping ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill passes first hurdle
    An independent Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission is a step closer after it unanimously passed its first vote in Parliament today.  The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill lays the groundwork for establishing the Commission as a fully independent crown entity – delivering on a key recommendation of He Ara ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Boosting border security with electronic travel authority – now over 500,000 issued
    We’ve improved border security with the NZeTA, New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority, which helps us to screen travellers for border and immigration risks off-shore before they travel to New Zealand. It was launched in August and became mandatory on 1 October 2019. More than 500,000 NZeTAs have been issued since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Plan of action to protect seabirds
    A proposed national plan of action to reduce the number of seabirds caught in fisheries is being circulated for public feedback. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage say New Zealand is a global centre of seabird diversity with about 145 species in our waters. It has more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • National interest test added to overseas investment rules
    The Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. Associate Finance Minister David Parker said under current Overseas Investment Act rules, assets such as ports and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • New housing part of support for Kaumātua
    The Government is building special housing to accommodate one of Aotearoa’s greatest taonga- our kaumātua, says the Minister for Māori Development, Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Speaking at a National Kaumātua Service Providers Conference in Rotorua today, the Minister reinforced the importance kaumātua play in maintaining and passing on mātauranga Māori, knowledge, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Forestry helps prisoners into jobs
    Eleven men from a pilot forestry training programme for prisoners in Northland now have full time jobs or job offers upon release, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis and Forestry Minister Shane Jones announced today. The ‘release to work’ programme was a collaboration between Te Uru Rākau and the Department of Corrections, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Reform of public service a step closer
    Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins today introduced into Parliament a Bill that will make it easier for the public service to tackle the biggest challenges facing Governments. The Bill represents the most significant change in the public service in 30 years. The State Sector Act 1988 will be repealed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Donations scheme to relieve pressure on families
    The families of more than 416,000 students will be better off next year as their schools have signed up to the Government’s donations scheme, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. The scheme will see almost $62.5 million in additional Government funding go to schools nationwide next year. “I’m really pleased ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Further support for Samoan measles outbreak
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced further support as the Government of Samoa responds to a serious measles outbreak. “New Zealand will deploy a further 18 vaccination nurses, bringing the total to 30 working in Samoa over the next four weeks,” Mr Peters said. “A New Zealand Medical Assistance ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the Child Poverty Action Group 2019 Summit
      Fa’atalofa atu, malo e lelei, Kia ora koutou katoa Thank you to the Child Poverty Action Group for asking me to be here today to provide an update on some of the things that have been happening across my the social development portfolio.  Can I firstly acknowledge the vast ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Annual Conference
    ***Please check against delivery*** Good morning everyone. It is a pleasure to be with you this morning to open this year’s New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Conference and AGM. Firstly, thank you Dr Alan Jackson, NZTR Chair for your introduction. And let us acknowledge also: The NZTR Board; Dean McKenzie, Chair ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Fairer rules for tenants and landlords
    The Government has delivered on its promise to the over one million New Zealanders who now rent to make it fairer and more secure, Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Kris Faafoi has announced today. Both renters and landlords will benefit from the suite of practical changes to the Residential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Two decades of marine protection celebrated at Te Tapuwae o Rongokako in Tairawhiti
    A marine conservation milestone - the 20th anniversary of the establishment of Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve - is being celebrated today at a community event in Tairāwhiti/East Coast attended by the Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “The creation of this marine reserve in November 1999 was a game ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Food industry asked to step up fight against obesity
         The Government is asking the food industry to step up work to tackle obesity including reducing sugar, fat and salt in their products, better information for consumers, and tighter restrictions on advertising to children. Health Minister David Clark and Food Safety Minister Damien O’Connor have responded to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Modern emergency care for Queenstown area
    ew, modern emergency department and outpatient facilities at Queenstown’s Lakes District Hospital mean better emergency care for the growing tourist mecca’s visitors and locals, says Health Minister David Clark. Today Dr Clark officially opened the hospital’s redeveloped Emergency Department and Outpatient facilities. The new facilities include: •    An extended Emergency Department ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Contraception important for New Zealanders
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter says today’s release of sexual and reproductive health data reinforces the significance of the Government’s commitment to providing free or very low-cost contraception. The Ministry of Health today published statistics from the Ministry of Health’s 2014/15 Health Survey. “It is important people can make ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ medical staff and measles vaccines going to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced that at the request of the Samoan Government, New Zealand will be providing further support to Samoa as it faces a worsening measles outbreak. “In response to a request from the people of Samoa, New Zealand is providing 3000 measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Disability Action Plan 2019 – 2023
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