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Open mike 03/09/2020

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 3rd, 2020 - 239 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

239 comments on “Open mike 03/09/2020 ”

  1. Dennis Frank 1

    Tough being an msm journalist. Have to write stuff for the average cretin, yet make it seem intelligent in a semi-plausible manner. Stuff has this anonymous editorial: https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/122640502/election-2020-shaws-green-school-shambles-risks-his-partys-future

    As one left-wing blogger put it, if only Shaw had fought this hard for actual Green policy. Instead, he played hardball over funding that completely contradicted his own party’s education policy.

    To be genuinely intelligent, the writer would have had to find and specify `shovel-ready projects' eligible for the coalition's funding criteria that conformed to "actual Green policy." Doing so would make the critique valid: Shaw chose the Green School instead of them. Too hard! The writer would rather die.

    And it didn't "completely contradict" GP education policy, which merely said the Greens would phase out taxpayer funding of private schools. Didn't say when. Didn't make an exception for schools prioritising the teaching of sustainability – which are obviously essential. Crap policy is the point here. Writer too stupid to get it.

    it seems unlikely that Shaw will do the same, if only because there is no obvious contender to replace him. The party’s rules require it to have male and female co-leaders and although the party is blessed with an abundance of female talent, there are fewer viable options on the male side.

    A genuinely intelligent observation, to the writer's credit. The Greens have worked hard to avoid catering for pakeha kiwi males: their collective efforts are paying off. I trust we will get another pakeha male plus an ethnic male into parliament after the election, given their list positions, and both are potential co-leaders.

    • Ad 1.1

      Shaw's apology-grovel made the Green Party particularly shovel-ready.

    • Adrian Thornton 1.2

      Turns out ex PricewaterhouseCoopers consultant and free market liberal, James Shaw is not only a pretty inept politician he is also just another lying bullshitting politician, as the great I.F. Stone once said..

      "All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out."

      I seem to remember being quite battered on this site by many members only a few days ago for questioning Shaws credibility and and his shaky relationship with the truth…of course as usual no apologies will be forthcoming….

      ….That was before an email – obtained by Newshub – surfaced that went to Government ministers and the Treasury from Shaw's office last month.

      "Minister Shaw won't sign this briefing [of infrastructure projects] until the Green School in Taranaki is incorporated," the email dated August 7 said.

      "Sorry to be the spanner-in-the-works, but if we can get the project included, he'll sign everything this afternoon."


      I wonder if Weka or robert guyton could enlighten the rest of us as to whether Shaw mentioned this part of his involvement with the project during the Green zoom call late last week?

      Shaw five days ago…

      He created an exclusions list of projects he didn’t want funded, like roading, irrigation, and private university halls – the school, he says, was something he missed.

      “To be honest with you, I missed it,” Shaw said.

      “We were thinking about it in terms of building and constructions, not education."


      • Dennis Frank 1.2.1

        Parts of the overall picture remain missing or fuzzy. I'd prefer him to be more forth-coming about the process & share your scepticism (but not your framing).

        Equally, I don't like the other Green parliamentarians keeping quiet on the situation. I see leftism as the problem: it imposes a belief system of mindless conformity. I'd rather they use their natural agency instead.

        The education policy spokesperson ought to point out that the GP education policy is no longer fit for purpose. Instead, we get a stance of moronic ignorance of that.

        The other co-leader could provide leadership too. Spell out due process, and explain how James acted in accord with coalition requirements and criteria.

        Eugenie Sage, as co-member of the funding decision-making committee, could clarify that and thereby defeat media spin. It would be a public service if she did.

        Instead of all that, we get a shrill chorus of sectarians trying to defeat our common interests. That's how ideology perverts human nature.

      • solkta 1.2.2

        What is your point? What is the lie that was told?

        Shaw has always been open that he backed the project. The "missed it" that you mention is in reference to missing the fact that it conflicted with Green Education policy. As well as creating an exclusion list his brief was also to create an inclusion list. This was clear from the start. There would not be any point in creating an inclusion list and then not insisting that those projects be included.

      • Ad 1.2.3

        Shaw's use of leverage was excellent and praiseworthy.

        Shaw was doing precisely what Peters and Jones have been doing within this government for three years.

        Shaw should do more of this leverage, not more.

        Apologising for it to the self-righteous moronic weakling fools in his own party was the crime he will be punished for at the polls.

        • Pat

          You would hope that if Shaw was going to adopt the denigrated tactics of Peters and Jones he'd chose a more worthy subject to die in a ditch over.

          • Ad

            Aye but it's great practise for getting out of this Green Party mentality of expecting their own pristine virtue to be rewarded, and instead realising that it's about exercising power to get what you want, making the right enemies, and facing down opposition both within and without their own party.

            Already, despite Shaw's grovelling, he's getting a better result than when the Progressives decided to chuck their toys over Iraq, after which many years of messy disaggregated and useless splintering of parties occurred.

            Love your scars, James, you'll get the cred from all for it.

            Just wait until the facility opens up, James is there cutting the ribbon with the Taranaki haute-bourgeoisie, and see who wants to be on the invite list.

            • Andre

              I'm sure the crystal garden will be very lovely. Redolent with harmonious ethereal vibrations.

            • weka

              the problem with this argument is that the Greens are a *member based party. There is no Shaw without the members. The members literally put him in the co-leadership position he is in. So if he goes against the members then the party loses.

              I'm really curious how Shaw's actions re leverage stack up against say Peters, but there's no way to know because Peters does everything behind a closed door, and the narrative around what Shaw did is still piecemeal. I have no way to judge whether Shaw did something wrong or right.

              • weka

                there's also a conflict here between the values in green politics and the values in the left. I agree there is some danger here of Shaw being perceived as weak because of how he apologises. But the danger exists because of macho politics and the brutality of the left and the MSM. Within green politics, what he is doing is on point: be willing to be held accountable when one fucks up, listen to what people are saying, acknowledge the mistake, apologise including to specific people most affected, commit to solutions, present solutions, make amends. That process is standard and works well at building collaboration and good working relationships. That large parts of the left perceive that as weakness is about those parts of the left.

                It's a fine line for Shaw, how to be true to the green values and how to be strong in what is essentially an abusive political culture. In the past he has managed that well imo, he looks more shaken this time (which I assume will in part be about covid stress, and the personal nature of the fuckup).

              • Mika

                I think some of the ructions arise from the ongoing culture wars within the Green Party. There is an emerging split between the old guard environmentalists and economic justice proponents and the younger identity politics ideologues, and Shaw has had a target on his back for a while. If I recall correctly the Left-Green network caucus within the party didn't even include him on their preferred candidate rankings during that process.

                He was clearly wrong about the funding of the green school, but all this blood-letting has got the sharks circling. I don't think his apology will ever appease the identity politics ideologues wing of his party. They will be planning to roll him after the election.

                • Robert Guyton

                  Once the party goes over 5% and returns to it's position alongside of Labour in Government, Shaw will be secure and all will be forgiven.

                  • weka

                    pretty sure the GLN will continue to agitate around their position, but I see that as healthy so long as the party maintains pragmatics alongside robust debate.

                • weka

                  not sure the Green Left Network has that much power? Also the caucus is light on experienced MPs after the loss of so many in 2017 and Hughes this year. Shaw is the only male MP in the top ten of this years list. Who would they propose? Not very well thought through.

                  Better strategy would be to continue the internal party work to pull the party more left (including Shaw). This appears to be working (eg the dropping of the BRRs, and the new welfare policy).

                  Whatever happens the Greens still need a working relationship with the business and political classes in NZ. I remain unconvinced that at this time in NZ a jump to the left by the Greens will somehow magically get lefties to vote for them, when they already have the most left wing policy of any party in parliament. What we need is strong extra-parliamentary movements that will pull all of the left parties more left, but the left is incapable of doing that atm, because it insists on purity politics and punching its allies.

                  • Andre

                    Shaw is the only male MP in the top ten of this years list.

                    Are there aspects of Green rainbow inclusivity and specifically Teanau Tuiono and Ricardo Menendez March I wasn't previously aware of?

                    • weka

                      those two men aren't MPs.

                    • weka

                      The Greens have elected a non-MP co-leader before, Russell Norman. But he had years of experience in the party, holding key paid positions as a staffer, then campaign manager and party development. At the time of becoming coleader he was tenth on the party list.

                  • Sabine

                    maybe its time for two female co-leaders and it would be inline with inclusivity.

                    • weka

                      not sure that's technically possible.

                      edit: just checked, it says one male, one female.

                    • solkta

                      How would that be in line with "inclusivity"? The Greens have always had gender balanced cos in all leadership positions at every level of the party, and have always produced a party list that is as gender balanced as possible. This practice has been so successful at encouraging women to be involved that there is now a lack of men in the first band of ten of the Party List. Now that it is in fact men who need the benefit of the policy you think it should be axed because inclusivity?!

                    • weka

                      the identity parts of the party want the position to be at least one female. In which case it could end up being two females, or two males (one man, one trans woman) because the GP will consider trans women = female. There's a whole cluster of complications and contradictions there (esp if NZ adopts gender self ID) that I doubt the party is ready for and NZ certainly not.

                    • solkta

                      The Party already uses gender self ID for co elections. I could give examples but it would not be appropriate for me to discuss the gender identity of party office holders in public. The only contradiction is when someone sees themselves as not aligning with either gender but has to choose one in order to run for election. I can assure you also that there are plenty of "identity parts" of the membership who would not accept two women in a co position.

                • solkta

                  The Left Greens network represents only a minority of left identifying members. Can't see that this will be any threat to Shaw as co-leader.

            • Pat

              I expect that Shaw will be making sure hes out of town the day the ribbon is cut.

              Your exclamation of kudos is absurd when all he has done is demonstrated a complete lack of nous on multiple levels.

          • Gabby

            Like an organisation that needed the money.

        • weka

          Lefties: the Greens should man up and use their political leverage to get what they want

          Also lefties: how dare the Greens use their political leverage to get what they want

          Ad: The Greens are strong, but they are also weak. The Greens should be like Labour and NZF. The Greens need to Do Better so they are in parliament, but meh, who really cares if the Greens are in parliament.


          • solkta

            yes my desk has some new dents in it.

          • Gabby

            But this wasn't 'what they want', was it.

            • weka

              doesn't matter whether it was or it wasn't, people that want to hate on the Greens would criticise them for using leverage.

          • Ad

            Got it in one!

          • Siobhan

            What on earth would make you..or James Shaw for that matter… think Lefties or the majority of Greenies have ever wanted private schools for the very wealthy crystal hugers of the world?

            "Shovels" would be better used creating actual physical structures for actual Green Education we can all access.

          • JohnSelway

            The problem I have with this 'green school' is its promotion of pseudoscience. Crystals and DNA activation or whatever the fuck it was

            [Please point to where on the Green School website they promote “[c]rystals and DNA activation” or withdraw and apologise for asserting a lie – Incognito]

            • Andre

              And that Shaw had met with the owners. So he should have been clued in to that problematic aspect of it. Or at least, picked up that a bit more due diligence was needed. Certainly the web info available about the school gave off the vibe that they might be into that kind of nonsense, even if it wasn't explicit about it.

              So that leaves me with the impression that Shaw himself may be into woo-woo stuff. Nothing in his statements since this blew up gives me any counter-impression.

              • solkta

                so do you think that funding should be cut from state schools that offer religeous instruction?

              • Dennis Frank

                he should have been clued in to that problematic aspect of it

                I saw nothing on their website to give him any reason to be concerned that it is anything other than as signalled to the public.

                Nothing wrong with alternative belief systems. I've been checking them out since the 1960s. Many have since become accepted as part of our culture. Fringe stuff is as likely as not to be dodgy (just like mainstream beliefs) but we judge on a case by case basis. Bias is human, but it ought to be owned.

            • Incognito

              See my Moderation note @ 1:03 PM.

            • JohnSelway

              I'm sorry – it wasn't a lie, perhaps a poor choice of words on my part.

              I was referring to the school parent who hosted the a ceremony which included bullshit crystal ceremonies etc.

              Relax Incognito – it was just poor wording on my part. No need for an embolism

              [You stated that the Green School were promoting something they had not and do not. That is a lie in my books. Please use your words more carefully next time because I’m allergic to dishonest bullshitters and poor language skills are no excuse – Incognito]

              • Incognito

                See my Moderation note @ 1:41 PM.

                • Dennis Frank

                  I bet they will be delighted that the Nats are open to the possibilities of crystal tech:

                  "Maybe it's the crystals that ensured this school miraculously got almost $12 million out of the Government," said National's education spokesperson Nicola Willis.

                • weka

                  Parents of one of the school's students were organising that. It's not the school and to characterise it as the school is highly misleading. Likewise to characterise the GP as abandoning science.

              • weka

                I also see it as a lie, and a political slur with some pretty deliberate intention behind it. You run slur lines in a highly charged political debate, expected to get moderated.

                The school has clarified its position on this. Here's one bit in the MSM talking to Green School Taranki chief executive Chris Edwards,

                Edwards also found himself distancing the school from parents of students there who have publicly expressed Covid-19 conspiracy theories and held something called a "lion's gate abundance and manifestation ceremony" on its grounds.

                Christof Melchizedek, who describes himself on his website as a "navigator, architect and guardian" in the service of the "Devine Plan" has been reported as saying in a now-deleted Facebook post that Covid-19 was a "manufactured natural disaster" and a "UN 2030 vision".

                Melchizedek and his partner Alaya had also planned to plant a sacred crystal grid on school property with students.

                Edwards said he would would not comment on any individual parent or student.

                He said many different groups used the campus but that did not necessarily mean the school endorsed their views.

                "I think any individual who makes comments that are not necessarily in line with the school is entitled to make them, but the point I have to make most stridently is that it is not reflective of the view of the school itself.

                "So when we teach health we would follow New Zealand Ministry of Health guidelines etc just as any school would and if any individual holds a different view and they express that view, fine, but it is not reflective of the school."


                • JohnSelway

                  There was no deliberate attempt to lie or to slur.

                  • solkta

                    Perhaps it was one of those unintentional lies like National MPs are known to make.

                  • weka

                    I'm sure the lie was unintentional, but the slur looks deliberate to me (and it's not just you saying that the school is anti-science).

                    If it wasn't a slur then acknowledge the mistake and stop having a go at moderators. This kind of misleading in political debate is not tolerated on TS, over any issue.

                    • JohnSelway

                      No lie nor slur no go at the mods was intended.

                      Just a big misunderstanding due to my inelegant attempt at making comment

        • AB

          "Apologising for it … was the crime he will be punished for at the polls"

          True and excellent advice to the left. Never give your right wing enemies an apology to work you over with. And particularly not an abject one that sparks and fires up their in-built sadism. However instinctive it is for you to fess up, admit your mistakes and promise to do better next time, remember that your enemies have no such impulses, and despise them when they see them in others. At such times, summon up a mental image of John Key, and just say it's not a perfect outcome, but you are "pretty comfortable" with it.

          • weka

            except in this case it's been the left that's been putting the boot into the Greens/Shaw. Unless by right you meant lefties more to the centre of the political spectrum than the Greens, in which case your comments is a pointed one for Ad.

            • greywarshark

              That apology has a David Cunliffe shadow over it. I think it is seen as weak-kneed generally. Explain; the pros and cons, and expected outcomes, and strategical value – but don't be abject – it seems wet.

              • weka

                yep, but, men are humans, they have their own set of physiological responses to stress and abuse that in turn affects their mental health, cognition, resilience, ability to function highly (let's not forget that Shaw was involved in a govt that was making massive decisions very fast during a global and national crisis that will have long term effects and implications) and so on.

                I count the Key/Cunliffe election debate as a low point in NZ politics in my lifetime, where Key was high on something (maybe adrenaline) and Cunliffe looked like he was being repeatedly punched. That NZ considers this acceptable in choosing who to run the country for us tells us a lot about NZ. And the left isn't excluded by that, hence all the Labour hard man rhetoric that still reigns in many places.

                I'll make direct connections between what I just said and the levels of domestic abuse in NZ, how we treat the environment, and rape culture.

                • Dennis Frank

                  It's a highly relevant angle. The four high-profile complainants are women. I expect he consulted his partner for her view – and his co-leader of course – and both his mothers (if they are still alive).

                  He may have a lack of males to support him. I mentioned the deficit in that respect elsewhere this morning. Given that overall context, biology can realistically determine behaviour, and judgment.

                  Doing what's right requires self-confidence (which he has aplenty) and inner conviction. In a complex situation with right on more than one side there's a tricky balance, plus learning from a shifting context.

                  Incidentally, you ought to check out the report on the RNZ midday news. Someone leaked a clip of James referring to Hipkins approving the funding proposal (from the Zoom call, I gathered) and it was played to air. Given that Hipkins explained he had no authority to formally approve it, I deduced he was endorsing the general plan.

            • AB

              I hadn't thought it through as precisely as that Weka. It was more a general comment that the things that make you a good person (which I believe Shaw is), don't necessarily help you become an effective politician (which I think Shaw mostly is). Ardern's special character is that this division doesn't seem to affect her – she just seamlessly manages to be both. Being a woman probably helps.

              • weka

                Green Party kaupapa includes accountability. If Shaw had done macho politics last week instead, the debate would still be raging, not just fragments driven by the MSM.

      • Robert Guyton 1.2.4

        Your comment makes little sense but your intent is clear. I believe you are confused about the point you are trying to articulate.

      • weka 1.2.5

        We don't have a clear narrative of what happened. A tova-ed MSM piece that selectively quotes a few lines from an email out of context gives us a few pieces of the puzzle but I suspect that they're not particularly clarifying pieces.

        Why lefties are suddenly willing to use Tova O'Brien as a good source of political information and analysis is worth examining.

        • Adrian Thornton

          OK so I take it Shaw did not inform Green members on the zoom meeting last Friday that he had told Government ministers and the Treasury that he wouldn't sign off on other infrastructure projects until the Green School funding was included.

          If this is the case, which it looks a lot like it is, then Shaw is in fact exactly what I said he was last Saturday…a lying bullshitter….it is also looking a lot like he bullshitted to both you and Guyton last Friday, right to your faces (well through the medium of a screen, but that's close enough for you both I expect).

          And by the way, don't use the argument that he was using the leverage that we (rightly) always complain they don't use…if he had used this type of 'leverage' for something that actually mattered and was righteous, then this would be a completely different story, and he wouldn't have had to resort to trying to lie his sad arse out of, because if you ( and I am sure you know this already) fight for the right things, then you stand by them proudly..not hide away ashamed like he is right now.

          • solkta

            What lie has he told? It has been all day with so many replies, you can tell us now.

            • Adrian Thornton

              Well seeming as you seem to need the obvious spelt out to you… I wasn't on the zoom call, but I am taking the ringing silence from people who were on that call as confirmation that Shaw did not inform those members to the extent of his part in this affair, and further made this statement aferward.“To be honest with you, I missed it,” ..that is him saying that he didn't really know what the school was or something to that effect…looks kind of like a lie from here…in light of this email from Shaw's office…

              "Minister Shaw won't sign this briefing [of infrastructure projects] until the Green School in Taranaki is incorporated," the email dated August 7 said.

              "Sorry to be the spanner-in-the-works, but if we can get the project included, he'll sign everything this afternoon."

              • McFlock

                Maybe the ringing silence is because you think everyone is a lying neoliberal.

                • Adrian Thornton

                  Well as a matter of fact at least 90- 95% of politicians in NZ are free market liberals..so whats your point.

                  • McFlock

                    The point is that you regard silence as an indication of your correctness, yet it could equally mean that people recognise the futility of bothering to have a serious political discussion, to work through why something was done and how the same people can avoid repeating it in the future.

                    You immediately leap to the worst conclusion, hear the silence, take that as vindication, assume something even worse, hear even more silence, etc etc etc.

                    An absence of information is not confirmation of your pessimistic bile.

                    Who are some of the 5% who meet your definition of not being neoliberal?

              • solkta

                To repeat myself from this morning:

                "Shaw has always been open that he backed the project. The "missed it" that you mention is in reference to missing the fact that it conflicted with Green Education policy. As well as creating an exclusion list his brief was also to create an inclusion list. This was clear from the start. There would not be any point in creating an inclusion list and then not insisting that those projects be included."

                So WHAT WAS the lie that was told?

                • Adrian Thornton

                  Well I don't read that statement like that, but even if I did, I would still consider Shaw not unpacking the depth of his personal involvement in this matter to his own party members during the zoom meeting last Friday tantamount to a lie.

                  "Shaw has always been open that he backed the project"…bit of an exaggeration there btw.

                  • solkta

                    It is not a fucking exaggeration. The press release that announced the acceptance of the project was made in HIS NAME. That is was got members all upset, remember?

                • weka

                  I'm not sure what the lie is meant to be either.

                  Obviously Shaw didn't tell us everything he knew in the zoom call about the process or we would have been there all night.

                  The issue of the email can't be addressed because we only have Tova O'Brien's spun version, which is hardly likely to be neutral or conducive to clear narrative.

                  I think there are still questions to be answered but I am utterly clear we will not get that from the approaches being used by TO or Adrian or many others.

                  • solkta

                    I can't see that the details of the mechanics of how he backed the project are relevant. If this had been something that was actually congruent with Green policy the membership would have said "nice one Stu" to hearing that Shaw had pushed hard. The issue is that he made a mistake in backing it, not how he backed it.

                    • weka

                      I tend to agree. On balance of probabilities it seems more likely to me that Shaw just did what is normal in such processes, rather than saying actually blackmailing the other parties. But it's really hard to know because the MSM have been so useless in making a clear story.

                    • solkta

                      It makes me wonder how people think these things get sorted.

                      Could you please include the items on my list. Yeh., nah. Oh ok then sorry for bothering you.

                    • weka

                      haha, quite.

              • weka

                "And by the way, don't use the argument that he was using the leverage that we (rightly) always complain they don't use…if he had used this type of 'leverage' for something that actually mattered and was righteous, then this would be a completely different story"

                Thanks for that. I'll now amend my previous comment.

                Lefties: the Greens should man up and use their political leverage to get what they want

                Also lefties: how dare the Greens use their political leverage to get what they want

                Also lefties: how dare the Greens use their political leverage for things we don't want (we the left who hate them and put the boot in every chance we get and think this will induce people to do what we want)

                • Adrian Thornton

                  OK, so who actually wants to see 12 million dollars spent on this school…you?

                  • weka

                    hard to say tbh. I'd need to see the list of the other options that were on the list.

                    you do get that the money couldn't go to state schools that didn't fit the funding criteria set by Labour and NZF right?

                    • weka

                      If you're asking me if I support any funding going to private schools, I would tell you a story about low income friends whose kids went to alternative schools like Steiner, because they couldn't cope with the state system. I don't have the same degree of antipathy towards private schools per se that others do, although obviously there are huge problems with class and private schools in NZ. There are better solutions to that than just banning funding to them.

                    • weka

                      I'm curious if you understand that most of the funding is a loan, and if that matters to your argument.

                  • Incognito

                    I do!

      • RedBaronCV 1.2.6

        This has been in the news cycle for days now far beyond most recent items. The MSM need to move on to more important things .

        FFS we appear to be talking about a government grant of $2.9 million (and a loan) – the wages subsidies for many firms topped that by a mile plus a lot of other substantial government hand outs.

        The greens have a small footprint both of MP's and back up paid staffers to keep up with all the nuances. They have apologised – it should now be over.

        • Pat

          Given all that why do you think it isnt?

          • Dennis Frank

            Because the media thinks rabid leftists knee-capping liberal leftists is fun, plus woo woo makes it even funnier? 🤨

            • Pat

              Dont doubt the MSM sees an opportunity to inject some controversy into a fairly cut and dried election …the woo woo? meh…..they still however need something to work with and Shaw has provided it in spades…the whole affair is so bizarre its almost inexplicable.

              And that makes for news and discussion

              As Incognito noted the other day if this had been NZ First the whole thing would have blown over in a day or two BECAUSE thats exactly what is expected of them, even by their supporters….not so the Greens.

            • Adrian Thornton

              No, it is still in the news cycle because it looks a lot like Shaw has been less than truthful with both the public and by the looks of it his own Green party members…so in effect is is still a live story.

              If this were happening to National I am sure you would be all good with the news coverage.

              • Drowsy M. Kram

                "Shaw has since apologised profusely to a range of people and organisations. Officials and the school are working on what will likely end up as a Government loan."

                Shaw is a decent politician – intelligent and principled, unlike Barclay, Ross, Falloon, Walker and any number of National party ratbags, but there's literally nothing like a Covid election to bring out the worst in pundits and politicians.

                This sort of (bought and paid for) sustained MSM coverage would never happen to a National MP. The extensive ongoing coverage is because a mistake was made by a Green MP, and it will continue until the election or until they have their Green scalp – disappointing on so many levels.

                "National Party leader Judith Collins says Green Party co-leader James Shaw should resign over his mistake approving a $11.7 million grant for Taranaki Green School."

                No surprise given Collins was the main beneficiary the last time the leader of a major NZ political party resigned.

                Is it to late for that $11.7 million to be reallocated for roadworks?

        • McFlock

          I'm fascinated at how much oxygen this is getting well after Shaw apologised. The journos are frantically doing CPR on a patient that died days ago.

          Still, we've all been there – it sucks when your favoured team is under 30%.

    • Gabby 1.3

      When you know you're in the wrong you get pretty sneery don't you. You don't even bother hiding your contempt for the peasants who overpopulate your playground.

    • RedLogix 1.4

      Didn't make an exception for schools prioritising the teaching of sustainability – which are obviously essential. Crap policy is the point here.

      Yup. There is a broad church of independent schools in NZ, catering to a broad range of family interests, some of which we might judge more worthy than others. That the party policy is a blunt club lacking nuance to tell the difference is hardly Shaw's fault.

      Still it has served a useful purpose in flushing out the party deadwood … and right before an election too!

  2. tc 2

    Anonymous pieces in the editorial are where the DP linen gets aired.

    Of course it always appears reasonable.

  3. Bazza64 3

    I guess you can admit that the green school is a “shovel ready project” as you would need a shovel for planting crystals. Those nasty oil & gas people will be converted to new ageisms & we can all be at one with the universe.

  4. PsyclingLeft.Always 4

    pol pots chief executioner Kaing Guek Eav… of the Cambodia genocide…has died (in pain? Certainly not remorseful : (.

    A born again christian to boot. slime bag


    • Ad 4.1

      He was a Maoist Marxist for decades, and committed his crimes as a Maoist.

      But top work for the Christian slur.

      • PsyclingLeft.Always 4.1.1

        awww….sting you? You obviously must have been to not get the context…

        He was a MURDERER…and found christianity…at the end.

        • Ad

          If you'd attributed his crime to Maoist Marxism, I'd have no problem.

          That's not what you did.

          You just rely on the slurs of (…) to make actual logic from statements.

          • RedLogix

            Yes. Psycling.Left has entirely missed the entire notion of redemption via the transcendent act of spiritual rebirth.

            To the materialists it's nothing but a hoax.

            • Sabine

              the thing as a roman catholic i always like the best was confession time

              i can murder

              i can maim

              i can bring misery to a whole nation

              but then i repent and i am saved, and fuck all those that i killed cause Jesus.

              • RedLogix

                Yeah I know, forgiveness and redemption are not permissible. Show no mercy in your heart.

                As for the crimes you mention, it is up to the state to administer the accepted punishment … personally I’m incredibly grateful to the people who undertake this difficult and soul corrosive work.

                • aj

                  The only forgiveness that counts is from the VICTIMS. The confessional, a one man tribunal, doesn't cut it.

                  • RedLogix

                    It is the role of the state to administer justice, and for individual to be compassionate. Materialists usually get this exactly arse about face.

                • Sabine

                  i have mercy for those that he killed.

                  He however will have purgatory to look for and deservedly so. I do object to the 'Jesus is my saviour' as a get out of jail card. I really do and any other believer should also.

                  As for the rest of your comment, can't be bothered as it has nothing to do with the discussion at hand, namely the abuse of a believe system by some of the worst humans to have wondered this planet in order to 'wash themselves of the sin they committed'.

                  • RedLogix

                    It was the attempt to smear Christianity by association is what is being objected to here, as Ad said, the crimes he committed were in the name of marxism. That as a man he later chose a different path speaks to the power of faith to transform.

                    Meanwhile still the left gives safe harbour to those who openly espouse a failed political philosophy that murdered tens of millions in the last century.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      a failed political philosophy that murdered tens of millions

                      Are you referring to Marxism, or totalitarianism?

                      Dictators and despots existed long before Marx – it's a pretty desperate argument to blame him for them.

                    • Adrian

                      Pretty much all the arsehole jailers and tormentors of the last millennia or so were born Christian, even the Marxists.

                      Whatever they were born they would still have ended up being arsehole jailers and tormentors.

                      the potential is in all of us.

                    • RedLogix

                      Given that every attempt at marxism has rapidly degenerated into totalitarianism, there is a good argument that the two are inseparable.

                      The core problem as I see it is this. The idea that all humans are of equal worth and innate dignity makes sense in religious terms; it is not hard to understand that regardless of talent, rank or wealth, all people are equal before the divine.

                      But in material terms this is clearly not true, we are all born with many innate differences race, sex, personality and a range of physical and intellectual capacities. Combine this with the fickle workings of luck (or what our ancestors called 'fate') and this means that the outcomes during the passage of our life here on earth will be different. Inevitably in material terms people are not equal.

                      Marxism is a philosophy that sees these differences and then demands they must be eliminated. It conflates what is true in a spiritual dimension with what is not true in a material one, and then uses a totalitarian social systems to impose equal outcomes in the vain expectation this will produce just outcomes. It never does.

                      Of course this never implies that gross differences are justified; no-one is for poverty, suffering and humiliation. But the spiritual approach to this question is to demand of each one of us, what is your choice? Are you, in your heart, pointing toward suffering or away from it?

                      This is the nature of the sanctified society, one that educates, supports and inculcates the desire in each one of us to choose good over evil.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Given that every attempt at marxism has rapidly degenerated into totalitarianism, there is a good argument that the two are inseparable.

                      On the contrary – there is a bad argument to that effect – a simplistic one that is not predictive of the particular causes and outcomes of regimes that claimed to be communist.

                      If I were sufficiently insincere I might blame religion for sectarian violence in Palestine or Northern Ireland and ignore the colonization and abiding sense of injustice that drove those conflicts.

                      By all means discuss Cambodia, but if we are to do so it would be better to get at root causes than to apply a one-size-fits-all condemnation of any attempt to move toward a fairer society.

                    • AB

                      Marxism (on my admittedly limited reading) looks to me like an economic theory on how 19th century industrial capitalism actually works. It seems intended as a more empirical counterpoint to the idealising myths of Adam Smith's butcher and baker. To suggest that it can be in any way 'implemented' is sort of nonsensical. People influenced by it may do all sorts of nasty things, but they would probably have done nasty things whoever or whatever influenced them. As a fairly superficial example – why can we trace a tradition of totalitarian political violence that is present in Tsarist Russia, continues through the 70 years of Bolshevism, and remains in the state-oligarchic capitalism of Putin's Russia? Murderous autocrats are gonna murder, whatever their bedside reading. And to circle back ironically, that is one of the reservations I have about the materialist focus of Marxism – however many insights it provides about how capitalism functions, it has no notion of sin.

                    • In Vino

                      Excellent comment AB. If we look closer at history, the fact is that no country with a tradition of liberal democracy has ever tried Marxism.

                      Russia, China, Albania, etc – all countries with a tradition of cruel, despotic, totalitarian rulers whenever they were strong. Marxist rulers in those countries simply remained true to the style of all their totalitarian predecessors. Stalin used Marxism just like a religion – as a means of social control, just as the cruel Tsars like Ivan the Terrible, Catherine the Great, etc., used Greek Orthodox Christianity. Not much difference. In fact, I suggest Marxism should be viewed as a religion, just like Christianity. Never put into perfect practice.

                      I suspect that people who have developed deep religious beliefs are terrified by Marx’s calling religion the ‘Opiate of the Masses’ implying that social control by the ruling class is its main function.

                      For that reason alone, Marxism must be viewed as an atheistic, evil doctrine associated with every evil ever perpetrated by any Communist ruler. (A pity Hitler wasn’t an atheistic Communist !)

                      A much broader understanding of history is needed.

              • Gabby

                That's not really how it works.

                • McFlock

                  Yeah, even as a lapsed catholic that always pisses me off. It's not a rubber stamp, the remorse has to be visceral and genuine for that particular get out of jail free card.

                  That having been said, I don’t think nearly so many perpetrators of serious crimes genuinely have theirroads to damascus moments as are claimed. Besides, that’s between them and any afterlife that exists. My love ain’t infinite.

            • greywarshark

              Getting religion when you have committed heinous crimes is the only possible move towards regaining some semblance of soul for someone who has stepped so far away from the poor attempts we have made to form a 'civilised' world. It was a good move for him for whatever reason he underwent the appearance of change.

              And Stuart Munro makes a good point. Connecting Khmer Rouge with Marxism is unfair to Marx. A form of behaviour using something Marx wrote as the seed guiding idea, can’t be laid at Marx’s feet. In fact he noticed this tendency before he died prompting him to announce – “I’m not a Marxist”.
              Guesde was the inspiration for a famous quotation by Karl Marx. … This exchange is the source of Marx’s remark, reported by Friedrich Engels: “ce qu’il y a de certain c’est que moi, je ne suis pas marxiste” (“what is certain is that [if they are Marxists], [then] I myself am not a Marxist”). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jules_Guesde

              • RedLogix

                It was a good move for him for whatever reason he underwent the appearance of change.

                All people are capable of good and evil. Most people have never lived through times when we had to make a serious life-changing moral choice at this level of significance. Most of us have never been in a situation where we could commit an act of great evil and think we might get away with it.

                Most of us imagine we are good people, but in reality we have been just lucky not to have been truly tested by war, famine and chaos. Most of us have no real idea of what we'd actually do when face to face with the four horsemen.

                For this reason, I am quick to judge the marxist political philosophy that he justified his evil with, but I leave it to the divine to judge the contents of his heart. To paraphrase the old saying, 'there but for the grace of God goes any of us'.

                • In Vino

                  "For this reason, I am quick to judge the marxist political philosophy that he justified his evil with, .."

                  What on Earth do you mean by that?? He had no idea of what future history would be – he was doing his best to undersatnd human society, and add to the debate about it.

                  I assume you think his evil was atheism. Is that so?

            • PsyclingLeft.Always

              lol No Hoax. Its actually a Flying Spaghetti Monster………..Interesting the responses from the Believers. Who actually ignored what I had commented. The slime murdered…as a murderer.

      • swordfish 4.1.2

        Khmer Rouge's Year Zero – its wholesale purges & attempted destruction of all existing culture, traditions & norms – continues to be an enormous inspiration to the power-hungry little cabal of Upper-Middle Class Woke. I presume Intersectional Cult members will be in mourning for the foreseeable future ?. Black armbands de rigueur in Jan Logie's office ?

        • Ad

          Jan Logie?

          Green MP Keith Locke was taken to task for supportive articles he wrote while editor of the New Zealand Socialist Action newspaper about the Khmer Rouge regime under the headline; Cambodia liberated: victory for humanity. Locke claimed his initial support for the Khmer Rouge was because "…many people thought the Khmer Rouge were an adjunct of the Vietnamese communist forces" and that he thought they "…would be better than the regimes they replaced".

          He also responded in Parliamentary debates about it that he renounced his support after hearing of their atrocities, while the New Zealand Government of the time continued to express support for the regime.

          • Morrissey

            Under the cloak of parliamentary privilege, Phil Goff, Michael Cullen, and Winston Peters, who all obeyed the U.S. policy of supporting the Khmer Rouge, brutally slandered Keith Locke, who (after that first ill-judged support in 1975) was opposed to it.

            Page 1
            New Zealand Journal of History, 33,2 (1999)

            by ANTHONY SMITH

            THIS ARTICLE looks at New Zealand’s policy of recognition towards Cambodia (or Kampuchea) between 1978 and 1990. New Zealand policymakers had to make the difficult decision as to which political entity to recognize, if any at all, after the Vietnamese invaded and installed a puppet government in Kampuchea in 1978. The Vietnamese army’s removal of the genocidal Khmer Rouge, or Democratic Kampuchea (DK), led by Pol Pot, provoked mixed reactions from the international community. There was universal relief at Pol Pot’s removal, but the Association of South East AsianNations (ASEAN), China and the United States expressed the concern that a Soviet-sponsored Vietnam was attempting to achieve sub-regional hegemony. These nations all supported the anti-Vietnamese resistance forces. Controversially, New Zealand also opted to give diplomatic recognition to the ousted Khmer Rouge regime-in-exile as the legitimate representatives of the Cambodian people.

            What emerges about New Zealand foreign-policy decision-making over this issue is that it contained a great deal of ambivalence. ……

            Read the rest of this apologetic and biased, but revealing, article HERE…

        • RedLogix

          Very droll. But yes; the left needs to stop giving safe harbour to these neo-marxists.

  5. Dennis Frank 5

    Ben Thomas is a public relations consultant. He is a former National government press secretary and political editor of the National Business Review.

    The Infrastructure Industry Reference Group (IIRG), established in April to receive applications for funding, had lofty goals. It was particularly interested in investments that “modernise the economy” and set it up to “enhance sustainable productivity into the future” rather than projects that “replicate the current economic arrangements”.

    So you can see why James thought the Green School fit those criteria perfectly, eh? Can't expect Delahunty, Bradford et al to get their heads around that big picture though. They're merely leftists.

    The guidelines for applicants referenced the government’s Living Standards Framework (remember the wellbeing budget?), saying that consideration would be given to the social and environmental value that projects brought to a region, as well as economic benefits.


    As I cited here yesterday, the Labour/NZF ministers involved couldn't see that value and those benefits despite the region's leaders acknowledging both.

    In May, finance minister Grant Robertson used the analogy of a burned down house to describe the economy – you wouldn’t, he said, rebuild it exactly as it was before. There was a hesitating sense that the careful and cautious Labour-New Zealand First-Green government might just be about to be – transformative.

    But living up to the PM's rhetoric turned out to be too hard. If they had supported James it would have been dire evidence of authenticity. Don't go there!

    The only piece missing from the puzzle was – what was it for? Other than crystal planting, and meditation for students whose parents paid $24,000 a year for them to fly internationally to learn about lowering carbon emissions, that is. What was the vision, and could anyone outside a meditation trance at the Green School see it?

    To answer his questions, Ben would have had to use google. Can't expect someone like him to be that competent! If he had, here's what he would have found:

    The Green School way allows young people to thrive by learning in a purposeful manner. Learning how to be a changemaker and have a positive impact on the world … We empower young people to become happy, excited, lifelong learners within a future-focused curriculum that advocates sustainable impact.

    Beyond mastering mathematics and literacy, our students will learn to think like innovative and creative entrepreneurs and changemakers, through student-guided, hands-on projects… students will also be exposed to Māori history and cultural values that will be intertwined into the spirit of the school. https://greenschool.nz/

    We educate for sustainability through community-integrated, entrepreneurial learning, in a natural environment.


    I get that Ben feels obliged to misrepresent the truth, in solidarity with the National Party ethos. But why not try to create a basis for the Nats to embrace sustainability instead? A propagandist really ought to provide a viable path to the future for his tribe.

  6. Muttonbird 6

    Real Estate.

    That's all this incompetent spanner is good for. Yet she somehow snorted and troughed her way to Deputy PM!


    • Alan 6.1

      Why are you so disparaging of the Real Estate industry?

      • Ad 6.1.1

        Because they are valueless, lying, fee-sucking scum.

        • mac1

          Ad, above you wrote, "But top work for the Christian slur."

          Can you square that statement about a Christian slur with your blanket condemnatory generalisation about real estate agents to this father of a principled, ethical and caring real estate agent daughter?

          • Morrissey

            I'm sure your daughter is principled, ethical and caring. However, the fact that Paula Bennett has been allowed to become one shows clearly that principles, ethics and caring are not a sine qua non for real estate agents.

          • Ad

            Yes. With pleasure.

            Go have a read of Jane Kelsey's FIRE Economy.

            Jesus would have kicked their asses out of town.

            • mac1

              Ad, you made a blanket condemnatory generalisation of real estate agents. You quote Kelsey in support. You quote me the passage where Kelsey says what you said. Telling me to read a book is not enough.

          • Muttonbird

            Your daughter hasn't been masquerading as a government minister though, has she?

            • mac1

              It might be a more reasonable argument, (and we are interested in that aren't we?), to say that Paula Bennett is 'xyz' in terms of her reliability, credibility, honesty, and then say that working in an industry such as real estate, that deals with large amounts of cash and assets, needs a different set of values and practice.

              Blanket condemnation of a group pf people because of the dislike of a particular politician is several steps too far.

              It's like saying that all politicians are rogues. We all know that's not true………… seriously!

        • aj

          . . . . valueless, lying, fee-sucking scum

          That may be the most correct comment today.

      • Stuart Munro 6.1.2

        It's part of the FIRE economy – inflation disguised as growth. It has grown to be a massive deadweight cost on the NZ economy, sucking up wealth without even offering to cover any of their societal impositions by paying tax.

        • greywarshark

          Every word in that comment SM hits a nail dead centre. Real estate agency is the way to go out of the few jobs available that pay decent money. Paula B has all the attributes to be a good earner; I rip their brochures up, and throw their glossy magazine in the recycling, as I have little respect for the trade in general, they seem like predators on the body of the nation.

          They are like lawyers, good to have a good, ethical one when they are needed, and those good at their job making a good swag as long as they aren't working for the needy ones who really need them. I

    • Pataua4life 6.2

      Please tell what do you do for job MB

    • Sabine 6.3

      so no one in NZ wanted to employ her? poor thing.

  7. Ad 7

    Massive loss of business to campervans, then massive fire breaks out at the Tourism Holdings campervan yard.


    Looking forward to the insurers running the ruler over that one.

  8. garibaldi 8

    Living off commission brings out the worst in people. Paula is well qualified for that way of life!

  9. Treetop 9

    I think the government needs to step up and plan for more postal voting than election day voting in person.

    The whole country needs to be at 2.5 for the next month and no travel in or out of Auckland.

    Auckland has had it hard. It could be anywhere that a travel restriction in or out of a region could occur.

    It is 50/50 that another level 4 lockdown will occur around election time.

  10. Anne 10

    So, they've been at it again:


    Hard to know whether Putin was directly involved because the politician in question apparently had many enemies.

    I note Angela Merkel is equally as vociferous in her condemnation as Theresa May was a few years ago. And rightly so.

    • Andre 10.1

      Posts and comments from the usual suspects calling this war-mongering McCarthyist propaganda in 3 … 2 … 1 …

    • mauī 10.2

      In reality Navalny is an under <1% candidate and a professional protestor. Of course the BBC won't tell you that though…


    • Brigid 10.3

      "The Russian doctors who treated Navalny said there was no evidence of poisonous substance found in his body. They said his seizure may have been caused by a fatal drop in blood sugar levels. He is reportedly diabetic. So, from what we can tell, the Russian doctors appear to have saved Navalny’s life by their rapid response, but they were unable to make a precise diagnosis. What then merits Western demands for an investigation by the Russian authorities?"


      • Andre 10.3.1

        How likely are they to find poisonous substances if it is very likely their livelihoods and maybe even their lives depend on their not finding poisonous substances?

        • Brigid

          If you're so sure the Russian doctors were instructed to not find poisonous substances, why did they let Navalny leave the hospital for a private hospital in Germany?

          You didn't read the article did you.

          "By merely detecting the presence of cholinesterase inhibitors and while not detecting any specific chemical that then does not permit a conclusion of “poisoning”, which the Russian doctors refrained from."

          Do something useful and prove Navalny wasn't prescribed any drug that contained cholinesterase inhibitors or where cholinesterase inhibitors are a result of the metabolizing of some other substance that he took willingly

          • Andre

            Why'd they let Navalny go? Who knows what amuses Poots? He may quite like the idea of Germany spending huge sums on saving Navalny, all the while giving tankies just enough plausible deniability to try to stir up more dissent in western countries.

            Pootee may be just as happy with a dissident spending the rest of his life dealing with severe medical issues in a foreign country, as he is with one deceased on russian soil. The deterrent effect internally is the same, and apart from shitstirring, he don't give a fuck what other countries think.

            As for me producing a counter to some scenario you're just making up – it's not me claiming to know what ails him.

        • francesca

          And yet Putin was so unperturbed, on request from Navalny's wife, he gave the go ahead for Navalny to be shifted to a Berlin hospital where he would have no power to manipulate the doctors

          I would think the German military hospital could be subject to pressure from the US military, still there after all these years

          Geopolitical shenanigans, Nord Stream 2, leverage

  11. Treetop 12

    Reply to @7

    Maybe the owner of the camper vans are hoping they can sell off or rent the camper vans to the government to house people in over the warmer months. Other people would be interested in purchasing or renting a camper van.

    I could do with one out the back as I live in a subdivided house with thin walls. I can hear a creaking bed, footsteps, people talking, shower water against my wall, banging doors, a range hood and extractor fan, people using the toilet etc. Odd, I live with people who have a separate tenancy agreement which I do not see.

    • Sabine 12.1

      we looked into that here locally for my MiL's paddock of paradise as hers is slowly rotting and falling apart., and frankly the prices are way beyond reasonable for the crap you get to buy.

      You might as well go get a nice cabin build new – which is what we am considering now.

  12. joe90 13


    Donald Trump told Sarah Sanders she would have to “go to North Korea and take one for the team”, after Kim Jong-un winked at the then White House press secretary during a summit in Singapore in June 2018.

    “Kim Jong-un hit on you!” a delighted Trump joked, according to Sanders’ new memoir. “He did! He fucking hit on you!”


  13. Matiri 14

    Horrible news today about a livestock carrier ex Napier with nearly 6000 cows on their way to China, missing in a typhoon. There are at least two more carriers waiting to load in NZ ports as dairy farmers are getting crazy money for yearlings at the moment.


    Meanwhile, even more dairy farms in the Tasman district are converting to hops.

    • greywarshark 14.1

      I send out over 5000 wishes for good news to those passengers as well as the crew.

      Maritime New Zealand says it will be involved in an investigation only if the New Zealanders on board were employed by a local company or government body. The cows were NZs employed in production. What agency takes an interest in their welfare? Recent Country matters speakers on Radionz have said how patient and kind the cows are – we should aim to be the same.

      The end of the news item – Minister of Agriculture and Min. of Primary Industry are looking at the trade. I can’t see Damien O’Connor doing much.
      Cattle export industry under review
      The incident comes as the government is reviewing the practice – a move triggered last year when New Zealand and Australian cattle being exported to Sri Lanka died.

      Options being considered range from improving current systems to a total ban on livestock exports.
      As part of a nine-week consultation period, more than 3500 submissions were made.
      The Ministry for Primary Industries is now preparing advice for the minister of agriculture about the feedback.

      In the meantime, live exports are able to continue under the existing regulations.
      The number of live cattle shipped overseas has already surpassed last year's total.
      Cattle shipments to China make up the majority of the live export trade – in 2019 nearly 32,300 cows were shipped to the country.
      That has already been surpassed this year, by the end of last month live cattle exports to China reached 39,700.

      Figures from Stats NZ show the value of the 2020 cattle exports is $141 million.

    • McFlock 14.2

      Screw the cows.
      43 sailors were on board.

      • greywarshark 14.2.1

        Provocative McFlock.

        • McFlock

          People are more important than cows.

          The merchant marine runs in my family. Lamenting the cows with not a thought for the crew is an insult to everyone lost at sea.

          • Patricia Bremner

            Yes McFlock, those men work hard and spend long periods separated from family/whanau. This is a tragic event for those families.

            Shipping live cattle is another problem.

            Storms which sink ships will become more common with climate change. Sad all round.

          • Gabby

            Well if the cows weren't there the crew wouldn't have been.

  14. Andre 15

    Shaw really needs to have a fkn good explanation about why he wasn't pushing for funding for this. A public institute looking to expand its facilities to train people for a sector benefiting all NZers that we're desperately short of. That's completely compatible with Green ideals and policies.


    • Dennis Frank 15.1

      But Andre, you don't know if he ticked that line item or not, do you? The govt haven't told us whether they have approved it. Let's wait & see, huh?

      • Andre 15.1.1

        On what's come out so far, we can be fairly confident Shaw didn't hold the entire process to ransom for WITT funding the way he held the entire process to ransom for the Green School funding.

        Newshub has obtained an email that went to Government ministers and the Treasury from Shaw's office and it included a stark ultimatum.

        "Minister Shaw won't sign this briefing until the Green School in Taranaki is incorporated."


        • Dennis Frank

          Are you aware that you've adopted media framing?? I see no point in recycling melodrama. We know he had been given the decision-making prerogative by the govt. Just because the media are too lazy to acknowledge his right to decide, doesn't mean anyone here ought to tag along behind, eh?

          The guts is that the coalition included the Greens in this decision-making process. James had the right to represent the Greens due to being associate minister of finance. He had every right to make his approval conditional, because the protocol allowed him to. If that weren't the case, either of Jacinda/Grant/Winston would have said so!

          • Andre

            Yep, it was Shaw's decision to make. And he made the decision to put it all on the line for an elitist private school.

            That goes directly against Green principles and policies.

            While another project in the area that appears to meet a significant current societal need and meets all Green principles and policies also applied, and didn't get supported.

            Shaw needs to have a fkn good explanation for that to retain credibility.

            • Dennis Frank

              I see it differently. As I've said before, state schools don't prioritise sustainability. I've seen no evidence the establishment has included it in the national syllabus, which would be the elementary first step, evident in the early 1980s if not earlier to anyone paying attention.

              Funding a school that is doing the right thing is against a single clause in the GP education policy. Nobody has claimed anything else, except you. Your framing is therefore invalid.

              • McFlock

                The school's reason for existence is not "doing the right thing", it is profit (like all private schools).

                But this is what we get when people insist that the Greens stick to the environment: crystals and mung beans while perpetuating the exploitative system that permeates society.

                The same crowd who thought Turei should have shut up are the crowd who think guitars in a field can make private schooling a net positive for society.

    • weka 15.2

      That project and the other thousand or so that didn't make it through the selection process. Have you looked at what the funding process was? Do you know where the confidentiality clauses fall? I can think of two: Shaw wasn't allowed to talk with the GP caucus as the process was for the budget ministers only. And there are commercial interests that mean the public will never see some of what was presented or the process of decision making. Shaw has said that the process itself was problematic from his point of view. I would guess he would have preferred more transparency.

  15. weka 16

    Oh great, RNZ have a copy of the vid from the GP zoom last week where Shaw explained what had happened with the covid funding process and decisions. Drip feeding, today's installment is about how Shaw said Hipkins okayed the project.

    All that's going to happen now is people's nervous systems will go on alert again, another round of blame, the left punching sideways, and even more messy and confusing narrative of the funding process. Thanks MSM.

    (nope, not linking. It's easy to find if you want to).

    • Dennis Frank 16.1

      Ah, didn't see that you had posted this, when I replied to you further up. So the saga still has legs. I assume the party insider who leaked was motivated by natural justice. Didn't like Labour's distancing ploy, eh? Fair enough.

      • weka 16.1.1

        400 people in the call, pretty easy for a non-party person to have done this.

        • Dennis Frank

          Only members were allowed to connect. Do you mean partners of members? Possible, I suppose. I didn't even know Zoom calls are recordable!

          • weka

            anyone can join the GP so long as they are not a member of another party, I fully expect there to be members who are members so they can feed information to Nat and ACT, and those that supply the MSM. I would think this is true of every party.

            Members were emailed a link to join the zoom. Membership wasn't checked at the door.

            • Dennis Frank

              Ah, the old double-agent thingy. Thought it went out with the end of the Cold War. Perhaps I was naive. 😊

              • mango

                Definitely a dirty tricks campaign going on.

                • Agreed Mango. This has the characteristics of a carefully orchestrated campaign to nail Shaw and push the Greens to 4.9%.

                  But why are RadioNZ buying into it?

                  • Patricia Bremner

                    RNZ failed to correct the incorrect covid message for 30 to 40 min.

                    RNZ have a header up which emphasises the old UNICEF stats as though they are current.

                    RNZ is trying to make James Shaw look as bad as possible.

                    Nothing new here…it is how they operate!!!

                    Take their news with salt!!

                    • Yes I heard the UNICEF report this morning-RadioNZ blaming Labour for historical failures mostly under Key/Double Dipton….and RadioNZ just repeated the UNICEF accusation at 5.33pm without mentioning the time period.


              • garibaldi

                James Shaw is definitely naive, or stupid, or both. I’m picking the last option because of the way he keeps digging. This is such an insult to the Party. What he did was no momentary lapse of reason.

                • McFlock

                  No, he saw "Green" and didn't think "private education policy".

                  But he apologised, and I'm not sure how he's still digging a hole?

                  • Incognito

                    Usually, it is the gravediggers who do the digging, not the corpse itself. There is no shortage of gravediggers in NZ, it seems.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, enthusiastic shovellers, at any rate 🙂

                      If they haven't found a real teeth-worthy scandal by now, I'm not sure it'll happen.

                    • Incognito []

                      Heh! When a scandal is not quite yet ‘shovel-ready’ keep digging and sooner or later you will ‘strike gold’.

                    • weka

                      MoH mistake with the covid testing announcement was a damp squib too.

                      Expect withdrawal symptoms any moment now.

  16. Gabby 17

    Verbal sign-off? Okay..

  17. The issue that decides my vote–child poverty. A big fail from this Government (again)

    • greywarshark 18.1

      OH do show us your logic in how you have come to realise that this is a problem. It definitely is a big fail for this government. And you pick governments like you would pick racehorses do you? Past form, condition of track, what competitors? What is your logic in your decision to vote for …? Party. I wouldn't pledge my house on any of them. So what now?

      • roblogic 18.1.1

        Gonna vote Green. I vote on the basis of Matthew 25:35,36

        For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was ill and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.

      • In Vino 18.1.2

        Old news… Jacinda has pointed out that the figures for that survey are old, and from the time of the National Govt. No measures taken since then are included, so it is actually the National party on the hook, not this Govt. Commentator agreed, too.

    • Adrian 18.2

      The other 34 were lying. Remember how we were taken to task for child welfare by God knows how many despotic regimes representatives on a UN committee the last time one of these surveys came out.

    • Patricia Bremner 18.3

      We tried to find the time frame of this UNICEF report. It mentions the first decade of the 20s and 2013 to 2016. So John Key and c/o??

      Followed by 2016 to—– 2018?? Really hard to pin it down.

      The next one might show some changes. ???

      Watch the false equivalence reporting on this.

    • Chris T 18.4

      Since when is 35th out of 190 near bottom?.

      And it is probably Ardern's fault (Just threw that in for a laugh)

    • Patricia Bremner 18.5

      These stats are mainly 2013 to 2016/17 This Government's term Oct 2017-Oct 2020.

  18. Fireblade 19

    By Rod Emmerson.

  19. calltoaccount 20

    Only one issue in town, re the election… Covid. And only one issue counts there, and that’s the numbers. Today it’s just the one in the community (linked with existing) and one at the border. Effectively zero. Keep that up, and it’s Labour by a country mile. Maybe the virus waiting to make it’s move post lockdown relaxation, maybe not. An election unlike any other. Go Labour!

    • AB 20.1

      Elimination of this Auckland cluster (a string of zero new community cases) and no new incursion of the virus into the community – that's the goal for the next 6 weeks. To beat it back twice when most countries haven't achieved it once. And to do so through impeccable strategy and decision-making (go hard & early) accompanied by pretty solid and only occasionally ropey execution. Fingers crossed for that – to get through this irritating election decisively and then look hard at what's needed next.

    • karol121 20.2

      Sure, New Zealand seems to have dodged a human catastrophe bullet this time around and people will likely be able to move to and from the polling stations in about 2 weeks and then off to recreation, work, food, beverage and maybe even church for those inclined in that direction.

      Meanwhile, the economy almost screwed, people hot under the collar for whatever precautions have been taken, or have not been taken.

      And how about another larger wave, or even a more damaging strain of Covid_2 type virus?

      Maybe we are just looking at a reprieve in an environment which was more open to lock down measures due to the size of NZ, it's isolation and the fact that there were no viable tourist or student options open to the country while the emergency existed, and where it still exists despite thoughts of all good now.

      We probably live in the most interesting times ever in the history of humankind, but far from the safest times.

      Please, please, please, freaking WAKE UP!

      At least in part, I have.

  20. McFlock 21

    hmmm. Now they're trying to spin a cheap office rental as a massive scandal.

    Whereabouts is subletting a peppercorn rental on the Double-Dipton Scale, I wonder?

    • Andre 21.1

      That is quite an impressive shell game of transactions between different parties.

      But it seems pretty clear taxpayers are not getting diddled, but are in fact paying well below market rates for legitimate MP office expenses. At worst, somehow some below-market rentals should be getting reported as donations, and aren't.

      • McFlock 21.1.1

        Yeah that would be the main argument, except that if they sold it to the union at a cheap price in exchange for the cheap rent, it's difficult to demonstrate a donation as opposed to a reasonable commercial arrangement.

        I suspect it was sold to the union in the "early 1990s" as a way to protect the asset from the ACToids who remained in Labour post-Lab4.

        • Andre

          Staving off the kind of jiggery-pokery that an actoid tried on the Onehunga branch that mickysavage had a hand in fighting off?

          • McFlock

            Not familiar with that particular jiggery-pokery, but they jiggery-poked the party as much as they jiggery-poked the nation.

            • Anne

              A small group of ex Labour activists (who ended up in ACT) 'stole' a property from the Onehunga Labour Party. It took the L.P. years and at least one court case to get the property returned to them.

              Very nasty stuff indeed.

    • Anne 21.2

      Talking of cheap office rentals:

      Back in the 1990s ACT rented space in the Finance Plaza, Auckland (owned then by Micheal Fay) for the princely sum of $1 per week.

  21. Andre 22

    Vote early, vote often!

    Oranga bin Frauden is now encouraging his supporters to vote twice. He says it's to test the integrity of the voting system.


    (Just quietly, it's a felony. In fact, even just inducing someone else to do it is a felony)

  22. Reality 23

    Wonderful Jim Hubbard cartoon in Stuff today. Reminding us of Judith Collins' hypocrisy (remember Dirty Politics and Oravida) in view of her attacks on James Shaw.

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