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Open mike 06/07/2014

Written By: - Date published: 7:29 am, July 6th, 2014 - 191 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmike 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 …

191 comments on “Open mike 06/07/2014”

  1. Jane 1

    Wow, quiet here this morning! Did everyone sleep in?

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    Veteran CIA officer destroyed by submitting an official information request

    He wanted files which were already declassified by the CIA for release to be actually released.

    Note how they dug up details about him going back decades to discredit him, then threatened him with taking away his pension.


  3. Casual Observer 3

    I recommend the following link:


    It has a US-centric view but is equally applicable here.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1


    • Chooky 3.2

      +100…explains a lot…essentially workers /people should be fighting for laws/rights to allow collective action/bargaining…rights/laws which have eroded in the last 30 years when the unions were smashed

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      Dark Snow 2014: Why We’re Here (Video)

      It’s not just dust that’s darkening the snow.

      • ianmac 4.1.1

        My wife and I walked on an Icelandic Glacier a couple of years ago and it wasn’t slippery because it was covered in volcanic ash. A nearby guide was not happy to see two Kiwis just walk up as he was preparing his cramp-ons and picks to take a paying group up.

    • Jenny 4.2

      “Nearly invisible particles of “black carbon” resulting from incomplete combustion of fossil fuels from diesel engines are being swept thousands of miles from industrial centres in the US, Europe and south-east Asia, as is dust from Africa and the Middle East, where dust storms are becoming bigger as the land dries out, with increasingly long and deep droughts. Earlier this year dust from the Sahara was swept north for several thousands miles, smothered Britain and reached Norway.”

      This is only one of the positive feedbacks resulting from the burning of fossil fuels. The others are, methane released from melting permafrost on land and methane released from shallow water clathrates at Sea, the lowered albedo of open ocean over sea ice, and bare rock over glaciers, more warning also releases more water vapor caused by increased evaporation,(Though the jury is still out on this one. Because though atmospheric water vapor is an invisible and powerful green house gas, once condensed as suspended droplets to form clouds, switches from being a positive feedback to a negative feedback)

      But added altogether the positive feedbacks greatly out weight the negative feedbacks and could if they continue much longer even overtake the general background warming due to CO2 pollution leading to an unstopplable runaway greenhouse effect, continually compounding and unknowably catastrophic. A chain reaction that quite possibly has no foreseeable end point. (at least, not as far as higher life forms like us and many others are concerned)

      The message from all this is, is that the burning of fossil fuels must come to a screeching stop, nothing less will be enough. We need to be standing on the brakes right now. No coasting to a slow stop in 2050 or even 2030, (and which are purely aspirational targets, that allow politicians to avoid having to take action in the here and now).

      New Zealand is the best country in the world to lead the way. Just by withdrawing fossil fuel subsidies to Solid Energy and Tiwai we could instantly have a fossil free power grid. As well as that we could become the first country in the world to set an example by becoming completely coal free. We could make these changes almost overnight without hardly any cost in lower living standards.

      We could switch $billions set aside for the Roads Of National Significance into public transport. For the same price as the boondoogle that is the Waterview motorway tunnel we could have funded free public transport for Auckland for the next three decades.

      (overseas examples have shown that providing city wide fare free public transport as a hassle free public service has got people out of their cars like nothing else, with resulting huge improvements in urban air quality and a complete elimination of traffic congestion. This is not even to mention the boon to the climate.)

      • Jenny 4.2.1

        From Fare Free New Zealand http://farefreenz.blogspot.co.nz/

        How mass protest twinned with political campaigning beat back Motorway Madness in Mangere

        Wednesday, September 18, 2013:

        The community will be “consulted” next year but we all know what that means. If the road is to be stopped NOW is the time to do it.

        Mana will not let the tarseal addicts get away with this. Our Mana Mangere team will announce plans to fight the new road at a local body election campaign launch this Saturday 2pm at East Mangere Hall (Metro Theatre) on Massey Road. Feel free to come along and help.

        In the meantime I hope all readers of this blog will know by now that Mana is proposing an alternative to big roads this election. We want to put the big roading projects on the back burner and gridlock free the city within 12 months with fare-free public transport.

        The benefits are these:

        1. EVERY Aucklander will get an extra hour at home EVERY work day. Even those who never use a bus or train will be able to travel a gridlock-free roading network.

        2. It’s cheaper than tarseal addiction – saving hundreds of millions every year.

        3. No extra charges for anyone – no rates increases, no extra fuel taxes, no congestion charges, no network charges, no toll roads, no PPPs. Those are Len Brown’s policies – not Mana’s.

        4. Improved productivity – as I mentioned a government-commissioned report released in March this year estimated lost productivity at $1.25 billion every year from clogged Auckland roads. This policy will release that lost productivity and enable better pay for workers. Note here that Business New Zealand tells us we need higher productivity to get higher wage increases. Here’s a golden opportunity to pass on these big productivity increases to workers in wages.

        5. Faster bus travel on unclogged roads and no time wasted collecting fares.

        6. Revitalisation of Auckland’s inner city as more people travel to enjoy Queen Street and the Auckland waterfront – some kids for the first time in their lives.

        7. Cleaner and greener – this will be the single greenest policy in the history of New Zealand! – less pollution, smaller carbon footprint – big ups to the environment.

        8. Savings for workers – the Mayor of Tallinn calls it the “13th monthly salary” because of estimates the policy saves a month’s pay for workers using the free transport service.

        9. Economic stimulation as workers have significantly more to spend in the real economy.

        10. Tourism boost as tourists use the system to see all parts of Auckland as we sell the city as an eco-friendly city – released from the grip of dull ideas from the middle of last century.

        Despite the fact that contractors had already started some of the preliminary work on this proposed motorway project, under intense public pressure the tarseal addicts had to back down.

  4. Ron 5

    Well day three of congress is off to a good start. Only thing that worries me is that singing of songs of praise to The Judeo Christian God of antiquity. I cannot understand why a political party feels the need to carry out this activity
    Maybe its time to move away from such outdated actions.

    • freedom 5.1

      The Houses of Parliament would be a good place to start.

      Speaker: We are honoured to be here in this House to represent the people of Aotearoa New Zealand and pledge each day to commit to the values and the responsibilities of that endeavour. So say we all.

      The House: So say we all.

      Is it such a crazy idea?

      • freedom 5.1.1

        Naturally the pledge would also be said in Te Reo Maori and MPs can respond in either or both.
        If someone can add a Te Reo Maori translation it would be appreciated.

      • Colonial Viper 5.1.2

        So say we all

        Well, I could definitely get in behind this 😈

        More seriously – some elements of tradition, incorporating symbolism, continuity and collectivity are necessary secure anchors for a steadfast and outward looking national identity. We need it.

        • ianmac

          My Mother was an atheist so for her funeral I suggested avoiding hymns but caved in for the sake of the others who were attending. Compromise? Some hymns do have great music though, but the sentiments I can do without. And the sonorous voice of Mr Speaker intoning rubbish irritates.

          • Molly

            Went to a young man’s funeral this year, that followed his belief in non-Christian values, and was amazing in it’s recognition of his individual personality and energy. Was appalled to witness a(nother) Maori attendee use the introduction of giving a gift of waiata – to introduce the song “Yes, Jesus loves Me”.

            There are so many different songs that acknowledge loss and grief without recourse to any specific religion.

            (In saying that I recognise my hypocrisy, one of my internal refrains when dealing with loss comes from the vocal chords of Aaron Neville – a more Christian message is hard to find….)

            • tinfoilhat

              Hi Molly

              Just as a matter of interest what are “non-Christian values”.

              • Molly

                Trying – obviously inaccurately – to describe how the memorial service was specific to the individual – who was not Christian – but was a keen boater, and involved in a lot of community learning. His parents read out a letter of reference that they had recently sent off for their son, outlining his learning and achievements over the years. People who had been in contact with him over the years recalled their interactions.

                One of the songs was “Sailing” by Rod Stewart – which actually was really lyrically appropriate, and a couple of poems about journeying etc.

                It was obvious that care was taken in selection of readings and items, to reflect the beliefs of the young man – which interestingly enough was not the same as his Christian mother. She had in her time of grief, the strength of respect to deliberately choose a memorial service that reflected “his” beliefs and not her own.

                The trite offering – of “Yes, Jesus Loves Me” was ill-considered in my mind and the one jarring note of the service. An imposition of personal faith on another’s service. Especially considering the acquaintance of the singer was minimal, and not close.

                (Non-Christian was just meant to refer to a lack of Christian references during the service – which probably would have been a better way to refer to it)

                • Ron

                  That is a pretty bad song in any setting, It certainly would be disowned by many religions with its line ‘The Bible tells me so’ Many Christians would not find that statement very good Theology.

                  The trite offering – of “Yes, Jesus Loves Me” was ill-considered in my mind and the one jarring note of the service. An imposition of personal faith on another’s service. Especially considering the acquaintance of the singer was minimal, and not close.

          • Murray Olsen

            I got a mate who’s a Presbyterian minister to do my wedding, but told him I didn’t want any god stuff. He thought he’d get around that by mentioning Atua all the time. I wasn’t particularly worried because my atheism is more casual than militant. However, in the procedures of government, I don’t think it has any place at all.

        • freedom

          something more like this perhaps ?

          We are honoured to be here in this House to represent the people of Aotearoa New Zealand and pledge each day to the values and the responsibilities of that endeavour. We commit to govern Aotearoa New Zealand with dignity justice and humility, to respect its past, to work together for its future and to enrich and protect all its people. So say we all.

    • TheContrarian 5.2

      Cunliffe is pretty open about his Christian beliefs.

      Was at a networking breakfast a couple months back and the speakers were Cunliffe and Parker. Cunliffe spoke at some length about his faith while Parker basically started with “I’m an atheist”

      • freedom 5.2.1

        It is my opinion politicians should not try to present other than what they believe, especially their religious views and that is how having a choice of parties in a democracy accommodates religion and its influence upon society. How parties internally and externally deal with religion in that democracy is for them and their members to work out.

        I am also strongly of the opinion that Parliament should not, in the administration of its duties and protocols, be seen to show preference or allegiance to one set of beliefs over another.

        • Colonial Viper

          The protocols of Parliament should reflect the beliefs and traditions of many different groups of NZers.

          • TheContrarian

            I’d say the protocols of parliament should leave religion, of all stripes, out in its entirety.

            • miravox


            • Draco T Bastard


            • freedom


            • Colonial Viper

              Why would you respect the practice of only the atheists and agnostics in society?

              • TheContrarian

                Removing religion from politics =/= atheism.
                Politics can’t represent the beliefs and traditions of everyone because some of them are in direct conflict with one an other.

                • blue leopard

                  +1 CV @

                  Another way is to include the many beliefs – rather than ignore them all. We need more inclusion rather than further exclusion.

                • felix

                  I am part of a long standing tradition of ignoring long standing traditions and I insist that my tradition be represented along with all the others.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Fine, we’ll have the polies only standing for the first half of the oath.

                  • blue leopard

                    @ Felix lol oh dear me no you kind of explain the point pretty succinctly there.

                    …how about only drop the beliefs that refuse to tolerate others’ beliefs? A government needs to incorporate all of society – a belief that excludes some isn’t one a government can pursue. A belief that aims at forgiveness, nonjudgmental-ness, love and compassion – for example Christianity before the twerps start re-interpreting it – seems pretty compatible with community spirit – which is really what government represents isn’t it? Most religions can be interpreted in similar ways – and then most religions have intolerant offshoots created by small-minded bigots – so should the religion be interpreted with the best interpretation? Or simply be characterized by the way The Bigots reinterpret it?

                    I like the prayer at the start of parliament.
                    I am not a Christian.

                    • TheContrarian

                      “A government needs to incorporate all of society”

                      And it does so by not weighing any particular religious belief against any other. It does so by being secular and by making no ruling in favour of one religion over another.

                    • lprent []

                      Do you mean like the conservatives don’t expouse Christianity and impose it on national?, or an actual secular society?

                    • blue leopard

                      Hi Contrarian,

                      You can ignore the arguments I provide – yet I would prefer that you admit that is what you are doing. I am stating that the best way to be impartial is not to ‘make everything secular’ it is to be inclusive of all the beliefs that exist in our country.

                      I have already provided fairly long comments as to why I believe this is the better way to be impartial.

                    • TheContrarian

                      So in the case of Northern Ireland – should the state come down on the side of the Catholics or the Protestants? New Zealand now has a majority of people not identifying with Christianity – where should the state stand in relation to this?

                      The state cannot endorse, promote nor ban any religious belief. The only way the state can be an impartial judge to all of its citizens is to hold all views as equal, therefore having no view itself.

                    • blue leopard

                      Well like I said above – I really wasn’t arguing re the state – I was arguing re parliament. And if you were reading my comments you might have been able to work out that I would view that Irish parliament would have to acknowledge both beliefs – if the formal version of those beliefs were prepared to be tolerant of the other.

                      The state cannot endorse, promote nor ban any religious belief. The only way the state can be an impartial judge to all of its citizens is to hold all views as equal, therefore having no view itself.

                      Sure a state can. It can endorse one religious belief over another by acknowledging one over another. It can promote a belief by doing much the same – such as promoting valuing money over any other belief by ignoring all other beliefs other than that of valuing money or being aggressively neutral on the matter apart from that of the value of money. And a state can certainly ban a religious belief by creating laws that deal out punishments for certain beliefs – such as the one about believing it is o.k. to kill others. (Such a belief incurs punishment) If a state had knowledge of only one belief – it would not be capable of being impartial because those with that one belief would immediately receive more understanding than those of other beliefs.

                    • TheContrarian

                      So which belief do you think parliament should endorse? Which one of the 41000 denominations of Christianity should the state support? Which of the three major Abrahamic religions should the government judge to be more important than the other? Christians the world over eat beef but Hindus would find the idea repugnant. Should we ban bacon? How about Leviticus? Do we ban the wearing of mixed cloth? Or the eating of shellfish? Is polygamy is acceptable? How about death to homosexuals? If the parliament endorses Christianity say good-bye to your freedom of speech.

                    • blue leopard

                      Gees Mary (she was quite contrary, so I thought that name might fit),
                      Inclusiveness doesn’t require judging or endorsing one belief as better than another it simply requires acknowledging it.

                    • TheContrarian

                      So now we hit the same quandary I have mentioned several time now – the state/govenrment/Parliament (whatever you like) cannot include every religious viewpoint because some are directly in opposition to others. Therefore the state/govenrment/Parliament must be a-religious. Only in being a-relgious can it be just to all viewpoints, and inclusive of all view-points.

                    • blue leopard

                      I don’t think that is a decision for you to make Contrarian, I think that is up to the religious belief’s organisation to decide whether they are prepared to value intolerance over all their other principles. I do not believe that every religious person is intolerant of other religions – only some sects of certain religions are that hung up on intolerance.

                    • Ron

                      Well if not a Christian why on earth would you want an Anglican Prayer out of BCP that is Three hundred 70 years old.
                      or for that matter why any prayer. A Prayer by its name is a plea or petition to the almighty God. If he listened at all it would be surprising he certainly has given no evidence that he has ever acted upon the petition.
                      Leave him out, replace it with a statement similar t what we proposed earlier in discussion or just say This session of Parliament is now open

            • Vicky32

              “I’d say the protocols of parliament should leave religion, of all stripes, out in its entirety.”

              I have just been reading the last 10-15 or so comments and feeling that the left really wants to exclude people such as me…

              Thank you for reminding me why I haven’t read the Standard for over a year… 🙁

              • blue leopard

                Is good to see you back, by the way, Vicky32.
                Considering I have been arguing to include all beliefs – I can’t understand where you are coming from in your comment here. What do you mean?

                • Vicky32

                  I made my comment before seeing yours, Blue Leopard… as a Christian, I felt very excluded. It’s always bothered me that Standardistas seem to, most of them, despise religion. They also seem not to understand that many leftists are Christian (or Muslim) and conversely, many Christians and Muslims are left leaning – as this is absolutely NOT the USA! (Where you would never find that)

                  • blue leopard

                    Yes, it is a shame re people ‘despising religion’ – it would appear also that some such types do not see the detrimental effects of ‘aggressive secularism’.

                    Interesting what you say because I have a relative who is a strongly committed Christian and I was discussing how I didn’t understand why Christians are voting right in US (I see left-wing values as far closer aligned with Christian beliefs – or any religion I know of – for that matter!) this conversation informed me how off-putting the secularism expressed by Helen Clark was for that person- (she did something like cancel Christmas carol singing in schools?). I can’t say I think this was a good move for any reason – yet especially not if it alienates good people.

                    Perhaps what you express is more widespread than ‘secularists’ would care to believe?

                    • Vicky32

                      “Perhaps what you express is more widespread than ‘secularists’ would care to believe?”

                      I think so! (This board used to have a good quote function, it’s a pity it’s gone). I remember being very surprised when I saw my non-Christian son say on a website called h2g2 years ago, to a person in the US or UK, I can’t remember which, that the religious right scarcely even existed here, and that most religious people here are leftists. I was surprised, because I had taken him to church with me until he was 17 and didn’t want to attend, and I didn’t think he had even noticed! But he had…

                    • KJT

                      I think you are talking about the “aggressive intolerance” that many people seem to think their particular beliefs, or lack of them, justify.

                      It mystifies me how many otherwise intelligent people believe in things when their is absolutely no evidence to support their belief, but I accept it as one of the mysteries of life. And there are many religious people who do a lot of good. Equally there are many who are intolerant and “holier than though”.

                      All of the worlds religions have similar positions on how to treat others, as do atheists and humanists.

                      It is a pity that many “Christians” “Muslims” and others do not listen to their own religions teachings.

                      I do not have a problem with inclusiveness, just bigotry and intolerance.

                    • TheContrarian

                      “It is a pity that many “Christians” “Muslims” and others do not listen to their own religions teachings.”

                      It is also a pity that some of them listen to their own religious teachings. For example the 10 Commandments explicitly reject freedom of speech, association and expression – fundamental human rights.

                  • Ron

                    Mmm Considering the Anglican Church is often called the Tory Party at Prayer it is understandable that many people of the left do not want a religion associated with all that things that they want to escape from. Yes you could replace the C of E with some other brand of religion but then you come up with which one? Someone once showed me some stats about the number of Catholics as a proportion of population as compared with their representation in the House. It was way way out of whack and one would have to wonder why so many of that religion find them self elected to parliament. I do not imagine that the situation has improved which may indicate why we have been so slow to make changes to legislation that catholics are opposed to. Eg Birth Control, Abortion, getting the taxpayer to fund their brand of religious schools for starters.
                    The only answer that I can see is that we remove all religion from Parliament and the School system. If people want to follow a certain religion that is heir business but not via tax funded institutions. We now have reportedly the Conservative Party Owner holding prayer meetings at work. I wonder how many atheists he employs. We have the Sallies now deciding who will get housing assistance. This organisation that presented a very large petition that wanted Homosexual people to continue to be imprisoned and punished for falling in love with a same sex person. I wonder how many gay people will get housing assistance from Salvation Army.
                    OF course I could be just paranoid but I would prefer that all dealings with the public social welfare or education or whatever be handled by public servants and not religious groups.

                    end of rant


                    • Vicky32

                      “The only answer that I can see is that we remove all religion from Parliament and the School system”

                      AFAIK, it’s already been removed from the school system – unless there’ve been changes to the Education Act that I don’t know about!

              • Colonial Viper

                Nice of you to pop by Vicky32. It appears that some cannot accept the importance of spirituality and/or religion and/or faith in the life and wellbeing of a healthy people.

                • Vicky32

                  Yes, you are right, Colonial Viper… I am back as the election is coming up, and I am on tenterhooks! 🙂

                  • freedom

                    Good to see you again Vicky32, like many here, I will be looking forward to your thoughts as the election lumbers near

                    p.s. you made a comment above about a quote function
                    – what function do you refer to?

                    • Vicky32

                      “p.s. you made a comment above about a quote function
                      – what function do you refer to?”

                      Something for the non-html users among us, it was a clickable set of quote marks that would but what one cited in an offset box…

                • TheContrarian

                  It also appears that some cannot accept that others don’t require spirituality and/or religion and/or faith in order to be healthy people.

                • felix

                  Oh yay vicky is back. I guess it’s time to start the countdown.

              • freedom

                Exclusion is never part of my general outlook on life so don’t give up just yet Vicky32.
                The reach of the idea’s intent is not to eradicate peoples’ beliefs from NZ politics.

                I have written a more complete explanation of the off the cuff comments that appeared to be the catalyst of this interesting little excursion people went on today.
                I am awaiting some Te Reo translation work and should have it all ready for general consumption later in the week. I will submit it as a guest post and if those that decide these things toss it back, I will put it into Open mike in the near future. Not exactly a topic that is critically urgent but still ….

                Sooner or later this country will be having the big Republic dialogue for real and this very topic is going to be a part of that discussion. No reason we can’t jump a little ahead on the agenda 🙂

          • freedom

            CV, how does the current House Prayer [not sure of its title] that is read in the House every sitting day, achieve that?

      • JanM 5.2.2

        I didn’t hear that interview, but would I be right in thinking that his emphasis would be on the ethical and humanitarian teachings that are a part of a religious upbringing? That’s what I hear coming from him – a position, as a minister’s kid myself, I can clearly identify with. He is certainly not, if you look back at the way he has voted and the liberal beliefs he espouses, a conventional, moralistic and conservative christian in the way right-wing god-botherers have taught us to think is normal nowadays. It’s hard to think of anyone furtherer away from the likes of, say, Colin Craig or Brian Tamaki.

      • Chooky 5.2.3

        @ TheContrarian…..Christianity can be pretty broad …from the right wing war mongering , sexist , homophobic ,fascist fundamentalists to the liberation theologians …to the postmodern symbolic and non- literalist Gnostic mystic Christians…to the atheist humanist Christian theologians and priests like Don Cuppitt and Lloyd Geering…to the eco-theologians like Catholic Priest Thomas Berry and postmodernist Carol P. Christ…to the radical feminist gay theologians like Professor Mary Daly…to the Pacifist Christians

        ..Christianity is a broad church…and I would think that David Cunliffe would be of the enlightened liberal end of the spectrum

        …i have huge respect for some Christians…so good on David Cunliffe for being open about his beliefs!…i doubt he will try and impose them on people

  5. ffloyd 6

    How low can Paula Bennett sink. She now wants all women who have been abused by Rolf Harris to come forward and lay a complaint because she wants them all ‘to feel safe’. Maybe she could refer them to a Rape Crisis Centre. There is nothing sincere about that woman. Fancy trying to use these women for political gain. She is an absolute poor example of womanhood. Nothing to recommend her at all.

    • Anne 6.1

      She’s milking it – ie. Maggie Barry’s experience – for everything she can. Disgusting!!!

    • Chooky 6.2

      hasnt John Key’s National destroyed a lot of financial support for counselling services for rape and sexual abuse victims, particularly child victims?

      …this would be a good question for Paula Bennett in the House ?…she needs to be put on the spot over nationals record here!

      • ffloyd 6.2.1

        Chooky. Yes, that was going to be my point in my comment above but forgot in my anger. Christchurch closed for want of $30.000.00!

        And is she going to extend her ’embrace’ (spit) to include the girl attacked by the Malaysian ‘Diplomat’. Or any of the hundreds of women who are living in terror on a daily basis.
        Or is her help only being given to victims of attacks by celebrities.

        And how is she going to ‘keep them safe’. Perhaps because it’s easy to say that when he is already in jail. Anyway, what did she think he was going to do. Stalk them all???

        Sorry…………… She makes my blood boil.

        • Chooky

          ffloyd +100…it is deserving of great anger

        • miravox

          “Or is her help only being given to victims of attacks by celebrities.”

          Too broad a category there, ffloyd, clearly it’s only for women who can connect with Maggie Barry.

          As for those who have put themsleves in the path of non-famous abusers – well, it’s far too expensive and time consuming to deal with their experiences! /sarc.

    • greywarbler 6.3

      Poorer Benefit is amoral. Her type of thinking has just closed a rapeline in Christchurch, the suffering city. Her type of behaviour has caused suffering to thousands of women and men under punitive stupid policies still called ‘welfare’ I think.
      Now Rolf Harris is to be a focus of blame and a deflector of attention while she goes on her merry way doing with legislation and systems what Rolf Harris did with his eager fingers, and both blatant abusers of people.

    • Once was Tim 6.4

      “How low can Paula Bennett sink.”? Bit of a silly question really. She can go totally subterranean. It’s only a load of sorta spin sorta doctors and sorta re sorta imagers that sorta keep her above ground (sorta) giggle giggle.

    • Murray Olsen 6.5

      I think half her problem is that she makes pigshit look gifted. The other half is that she is nasty to the core. Once she’s surrounded by the intellectual prowess of the NAct caucus, this type of garbage will flow freely.

  6. Ron 7

    I can go with that. Would like to say something along the lines of ,,, and govern with justice and humility to enrich and protect all people of New Zealand.
    I would like to see a statement that is inclusive and binding on such governments.

  7. millsy 8

    A minute of silence. That IMO is probably the best way to open Parliament.

  8. North 9

    McIvor nee Woodham – I salute thee for your opinion piece Herald online this morning, part of which reads:

    “And it’s appalling McCully’s first call was to grovel to John Key for putting his boss in it, rather than apologise to the alleged victim of the sexual assault. Typical, but appalling.”

    Appalling ? Too right ! But “Typical” ?

    Typical – of McCully ? Can’t be. McCully’s not alone in this.

    Typical – of Key ? “First, you’ll apologise to ME”. Well, it’s been happening.

    Conclusion – McIvor nee Woodham, your “Typical” points up that the first imperative in addressing dysfunction in governance is grovelling, abject mea culpa before the very man whose conceited distaste for “higher standards” founds that very dysfunction. And while we’re on the topic of immunity – for GodKey, immunity from any responsibility ever.

    McIvor nee Woodham, you nearly cracked it mate but a mere Freudian slip does not merit a 21 gun salute. That said I appreciate how the prospect of the 22nd gun terrifies the shit out of you. Sterling jono’ you.

    • Once was Tim 9.1

      @ North
      McIvor nee Woodham (aka goodtime gal-oh-but-that-was-a-long-long-time-ago) replies: ‘ How very dare you call me “mate”! I’m ABOVE you and don’t you EVER forget it or I’ll just have to show you who’s boss’ (Hog).

      McIvor nee Woodham says that because she has a platform to do so (now). She was hideous (before ‘now’), and she’s hideous now.

      ooooo Tim – you pig! No – it’s just that there are some (Kerry, Pulla Bent, and others) that will get my respect the minute they show respect for others. So far, they’re incapable, and I don’t hold out much hope for their future. Usually I ignore them and thank Christ I haven’t had the displeasure of having had to listen to McIvor (nee Woodham)’s voluptuous presence (in body and spirit) for fekkin years
      sauce for gooses, source for ganders and all that

      • North 9.1.1

        The gal’s a riot ! Bubble Bubbles Bubbles…….of the cheapo variety Richmond Road Countdown. Except when she’s at the BBQs in Parnellynellynelly.

  9. Anne 10

    Q&A has just finished.

    Didn’t catch his name but was disgusted at the panel member who was supposed to be championing the Left. He spent the entire session rubbishing Labour. His analysis was shallow and stupid. Not once did he acknowledge there had been a smear campaign against Cunliffe and Labour… he just blamed Cunliffe for everything. He chastised Cunliffe for not talking about policy during his interview with Corin Dann – ignoring the fact the interviewer sets the questions and naturally all Dann wanted to talk about was moas, being sorry for being a man and the West Coast tree felling controversy. He also dammed Cunliffe for not discussing Labour’s Education policy during the interview. Isn’t Cunliffe announcing a major Education policy plank this afternoon? Did he expect Cunliffe to reveal it on Q&A?

    Add the voice of the woman standing in for the Right and a fence sitting “political scientist” and it was one massive anti-Labour talk-fest. The worst I’ve seen thus far!

    • North 10.1

      To the point where I’m satisified that it derived from a determined, unabashed editorial pose.

      Who was the putative lefty ?

    • tinfoilhat 10.2

      @ Anne I think they said he was a Labour party communications expert… and then he went on the entire time about how appalling labour’s communications strategy and delivery was.

      I agree it was astounding.

      • Anne 10.2.1

        I didn’t hear anything about a L.P. communications expert, but the opening claim was that he is a Labour Party member. That being the case, I am considering a formal complaint to the NZ Council with a view to having his membership suspended at the least…

        The worst experience was the look of joy on the faces of Susan Wood and the wholly unlikable right wing panel member. They couldn’t wait to make the most of it. Wood made no attempt to balance any of his claims which is part of her role as the Current Affairs host. She’s a disgrace!

        • blue leopard

          Actually Wood did mention to Quin words to the effect of: ‘you are supposed to be hear to stick up for/ speak for Labour/Left’. (shoot – I can’t remember it very accurately, sorry)

          It was pretty good that she said that – at least she provided a heads up that something was imbalanced about the discussion because the person put on to speak ‘for’ left wing interests wasn’t doing much other than shaft Cunliffe.

          • Anne

            Yes, she said that blue leopard, but from recollection she gave him one of her “lovely” smiles as she said it.

    • blue leopard 10.3

      His name is Phil Quinn, (am just watching the hour-later version)

      A google search on that name brings up a website for an Irish Medium with the same name …(who looks a lot like the guy on Q&A 😐 )….and also lots of Kiwiblog pages that quote someone of that name….

      • Anne 10.3.1

        Thanks blue leopard. I’m going to see if I can find out more about who he is, but if anyone knows anything could they let us know? Thanks in advance.

        • blue leopard

          Sorry Anne I spelt that wrong – it is Quin (not Quinn) here are some links, which I presume are written by him:



          and Q&A facebook refers to him as @philquin

          • Anne

            That’s enough for me. Left wing commentator? My Aunt Betty’s bloomers!!! He’s an arrogant right wing hack who pretends to be left wing. That explains his anti-Cunliffe tirade on Q&A.

            North is right. A determined, unabashed editorial pose. Who is the Q&A producer? Think he/she may be going to get an earful from me.

            • blue leopard

              Yeah its getting a bit much – starting to feel I won’t be bothering with watching political programs and even the cheap criticisms here on the Standard toward Labour are starting to get my goat; criticisms of Labour are increasingly appearing like direct reflections of the tone being set by the massive spin in the media.

              People need to really check what their views are based on with the level of unadulterated propaganda going on in this country just now.

              This is exactly how it works isn’t it? Poor political commentary full of bias and exaggeration puts people off politics so much that they neither feel like becoming more informed (if they do there is nowhere to go without having to trawl through mindless critique from people who have been brainwashed) nor do many people end up feeling like voting at all.

              • JanM

                I agree, blue leopard, I can see no point in watching/hearing any more of it unless it’s to follow a variation of ‘keep you friends close and your enemies closer’. I just find it depressing that their are so many stupid or naïve journos and commentators around prepared to sell their souls in this way. You can see how easy it is for dictatorships and other obnoxious regimes to rise up, even in so-called first-world countries, when there are so many sycophants around prepared to make the outrageous seem normal in this way

                • blue leopard

                  +100 exactly JanM exactly!

                  When I was younger, after reading books about/set in the war, I was particularly fascinated with what you just mentioned – how obnoxious leaders/regimes got the support they did… like in WWII Germany – I guess I’ve witnessed the answers to my childhood curiosity. It is atruly sad spectacle to behold.

                  • JanM

                    Yes, I hesitated to give that as an example in case it seemed overly dramatic, but it is what I had in mind, of course. Scary really – shows just how thin the line really is!

                    • blue leopard

                      I am glad you persevered in using that example – because for me it nailed it. And you expressed something that has been bubbling under the surface of my awareness for a while – and reading what you wrote cheered me up…as perverse as that may sound.

                      Hmm to put it another way – I think you provided astute and insightful analysis to what is occurring by using that example – and I enjoy when people share their insights. 🙂

        • Karen

          This article may help.

          Looks like he is a a bit of a Rogernome that worked with the right wing of the Labour Party in the 1990s.

          • Anne

            OMG Karen. Just read it. Am in the process of putting my eyes back into their sockets.

            You’re dead right. And they have him on Q&A representing the political Left?

          • swordfish

            Yeah, Phil Quin was active with the Right-leaning Mike Moore faction during the 90s. Very much supportive of Rogernomics (at least in his younger days). Ran Phil Goff’s numbers for him during various attempts to topple Clark as leader before the 96 Election.

            Also champions the idea that the NZ Labour Party should adopt the formal factionalism of their Aussie counterparts. I think it’s fair to say that Phil does enjoy – possibly revels in – having a bit of go at the Left of the Party (as well as the broader political Left outside the Party). So, I think there’s quite a bit of antipathy there.

            From memory, he worked for a while as an advisor to Aussie Foreign Affairs Minister Gareth Evans. Very much at the Establishment/Neo-Liberal end of the Party, although, to be fair, he has, at times, sounded quite progressive and Social Democratic – particularly when having a go at the Nats.

            The one thing I will say for him is that he knows his shit when it comes to the dark arts of extracting a winning strategy from a few shavings of the electoral vote. He has that gut instinct – from organising local campaigns in Aussie Elections, particularly, it seems, in Victoria – about what gets the punters into the polling booths. And, along with my good self, he was the only one that realised things were gonna be close in the 2010 Mana By-Election. So, he’s a long way from me politically (in fact, I seem to remember at one point he called me “a Trot” because I wasn’t entirely ruling out voting Matt McCarten in the Mana by-Election), but I do have a certain amount of respect for his campaign nous.

    • Linz 10.4

      Who is this Phil Quin?

      According to the National Business Review Phil Quin is “ a former adviser for the NZ and Australia labour parties and a strategic communications consultant”.

      Some of his work:
      NZ Herald: The anatomy of a failed Labour coup
      9:22 AM Saturday Apr 2, 2011 Fifteen years ago, Helen Clark stared down a party coup mounted by her eventual successor, Phil Goff. But her victory came at a huge price for Labour. Phil Quin, one of the plotters, offers an insider’s account.

      Phil Quin: Jump to left puts Labour on rocky road


      National Business Review: OPINION: Thirty Percent Doctrine dooms Labour


      He says he’s a member of the Labour Party. Not for long, I hope.
      He calls himself Phil Quin. I call him Phil Quisling. I also call him Scab.

      Here’s his twitter thingie: @philquin

  10. Just Julie 11

    Exactly, Anne!

    I was strangely propelled into some kind of alternate reality between how composed, assured and articulate Mr Cunliffe was during a provocative, hostile interview (not designed to shed any light on policy whatever) and the panels’ summation.

    Can someone please explain? (seriously) !

  11. greywarbler 12

    How can a duplicate comment show up? Usually a wee sign pops up and prevents.

  12. mm!!..cruelty-free cheese..!

    ..there’s a winner..!

    “..Biohackers making ‘real vegan cheese’..”

    “..Real Vegan Cheese is a not a cheese substitute!

    It all begins with regular old baker’s yeast.

    Through synthetic biology – we engineer our yeast to become milk-protein factories –

    • churning out real milk proteins (known as caseins).

    These milk proteins are then combined with water – vegan sugar – and oil –

    • to make a kind of milk which is ultimately converted into Real Vegan Cheese –
    • using the age-old cheese-making process..”



    • bad12 13.1

      Was it the ‘bio-Hacker’ title that got you drooling Phillip, flew straight into your little fantasy world imagining a secret group of underground cheese makers did you,

      Why not just make vegan cheese out of soy milk and save all the absolute frigging bullshit, don’t even need get into any of that cloak and dagger bio-hacking stuff,

      Just Google for the recipes…

    • Dave 13.2

      What is vegan sugar? I could google it of course, but where is the fun in that?

  13. Chooky 14

    Dr. Margaret Sparrow is a very great New Zealander !…along with Elsie Locke who fought for Family Planning and Ettie Rout


    Margaret Sparrow chronicles the experiences of 19th-Century New Zealand women who had managed to obtain abortions. Her new book ‘Rough on Wimmin – Abortion in 19th Century NZ’ explores the dangers, risks, prejudices and pre-conceptions of the day that befell those women who became pregnant out of wedlock.

    Feminist and academic Rachel Brown also needs a mention for her research on which Margaret Sparrow bases her book





  14. greywarbler 15

    I heard that interview Chooky, Margaret Sparrow has done much for NZ women and the country and the brave and determined doctors and supporters of abortion rights, men and women.

    • Chooky 15.1

      thanx greywarbler…she is a wonderful woman doctor for her compassion and resilience and intelligence and her fight for justice for all women to control their fertility and determine their lives ….. a truly great New Zealander!

  15. fisiani 16

    just back from door knocking in karori. actually being positive and not just a crappy slogan. Surprisingly strong support from people who say they used to vote Labour but cannot vote for a man who is ashamed to be a man. This. is the show me the money turning point of 2014. Bring back Shearer.

    • McFlock 16.1

      more fake twitter followers for the keyster, eh…

    • Rodel 16.2

      just back from door knocking in Epsom actually being a crappy slogan and not just positive; Surprisingly strong support from people who say they used to vote National but cannot vote for a man who is ashamed to be honest. This is the show me a perk busting turning point of 2011. Bring back Rodney Hide.What???

    • North 16.3

      I see your arse not working all out your mouth again FazzyUnus.

  16. Jrobin 17

    The turning point Fisiani is, imo, cutting class sizes. This has mass appeal. Men who react like that were probably not left voters anyway, concern troll, not convincing.

    • fisiani 17.1

      Actually all the comments regarding distaste for The Cunliffe’s false shame came from women in West Karori.

      • Rodel 17.1.1

        Actually all the comments regarding distaste for Key’s lack of shame came from men in West Epsom

      • Chooky 17.1.2

        find that hard to believe…sure you weren’t just visiting your NACT friends ?

        • blue leopard

          lol! that sound like it would be closer to the truth Chooky!

        • North

          He’s got no NAct friends. They all facepalm whispering asides about what a try hard he is. I got lots of NAct friends. They all tell me that. Laughing stock. They’re glad we got him here on TS.

  17. dimebag russell 18

    sunday morning funnies.
    prove you were in Karori this morning.
    You are just a figment of Hootons imagination.
    here to make trouble.
    you worse than a moran!

    • felix 18.1


      “fisiani” has never left the office.

      • Te Reo Putake 18.1.1

        Given that proven liar fisiani claimed the other day to be doorknocking in Hutt South, his move to Karori strongly suggests that National are desperate for activists. Or he’s lying again. Or both.

        • swordfish

          Still, you’ve got to admire Fizzy’s strenuous attempts at authenticity. He knows that Labour strategists know that Karori West is the ( slightly ) Left-leaning area of the otherwise relatively Blue suburb of Karori. He’s clearly determined to get under Labour’s skin any way he can. The bloke’s displaying a certain amount of tenacity on this. My guess is he’ll be talking about a middle-of-the road suburb in the Mana Electorate next – I’m picking Linden or possibly Pukerua Bay.

    • fisiani 18.2

      What’s a moran??????

      [lprent: that… ]

  18. lprent 19

    At the Labour conference afternoon session. There are about a thousand seats in the floor of the Michael Fowler, According to the Labour staff here, at least 800 seats are filled. Looks about right.

    • ianmac 19.1

      A great speech from David. Mr Key and Whaleoil will be scratching in their dirt piles to try and negate David’s message. Fat hope!

    • lprent 19.2

      That was a very good speech by David Cunliffe. Most of the policy has been previewed earlier.

      But he announced that the money that National was putting into overpaid part-time principals will go instead into employing 2000 more teachers. That will reduce class sizes.

      Everything that I have seen says that smaller class sizes works.

      Good. Paying people more for just doing their job seems like a useless idea to me. If there are cruddy teachers out there, then they just need to be either taught to do better or they should leave the profession. If they are burnt out, then just reducing the class sizes will help.

      Dropping National’s pointless paperwork nightmare of “National’s standards” will help a lot in reducing the amount of burnout.

      • phillip ure 19.2.1

        and timely..re dropping of national standards..

        ..that is also about to happen in britain..

        ..for the self-same reasons..

  19. Jester 20

    Just wondering if Billy Shorten was the right person to cuddle up with so close to David’s meeting with Women’s Refuge.

  20. Draco T Bastard 21

    US profoundly upset about this but what are they doing about this?

  21. Jenny 22

    How to offend friends and influence politicians


    “Mr. Holdren’s zeal, and his tendency to present somewhat alarming visions of the future, have stirred controversy….”

    “He’s somebody that people want to hear from,” Mr. McDonough said. “And even if he weren’t, he’d be sure he was heard from.”

    Mr. Holdren, whose views and pivotal role in the administration have put him in the cross hairs of critics, also spearheaded the most recent National Climate Assessment report, which painted a stark picture of the impact climate change is having on the nation…..

    ….But even some people who admire his intelligence and ability to explain the science of climate change say his passion for the issue can work against him.

    “He is a zealot,” said John W. Rowe, the former chief executive of the energy company Exelon, who was a co-chairman with Mr. Holdren of a panel on energy policy in the 2000s. “If you start off skeptical of his science because of the eminence of his zeal, you can be confirmed in your skepticism.”

  22. Draco T Bastard 23

    Maori stuck in protest mode — Sharples

    He said the loss of support for the Maori Party was due to Maori being in “protest mode” and not understanding “what parliament is about”

    Wow, the arrogance in this one is strong.

    • North 23.1

      Gimme protest consciousness ahead of lazy biddable fat arse at someone else’s tepu. This is how Peter Peter ShonKey Eater rationalises his abject failure ? More sneering at Maori ? Incredible !

      • Draco T Bastard 23.1.1

        Yeah, that’s how I read it. He’s been fèted and dined at National’s table and now thinks that the way thing are is fine – no matter what damage it does to his people.

  23. Colonial Viper 24

    WTF Paddy Gower interview of Cunliffe from earlier on in the Labour congress – just saw this – that Jonolist is a horrible little NAT weasel completely uninterested in serving the public. Hope he loses his access to the PM’s office in September.

    Paddy’s tactics appears to be make Cunliffe focus on the small picture, the minutiae and the trivial


    • Rodel 24.1

      Poor Paddy is still obsessed with trivia like tongue in cheek Moa humour and his imaginary past Abcs. There are bigger issues but he doesn’t seem to understand why we have elections.

    • Anne 24.2

      Actually I think Cunliffe enjoyed it CV. Paddy Gower was playing the devil’s advocate and Cunliffe knew it. There was a 12 minute sparring match and David won. His best line was quoting Gower’s producer who was complimentary about Labour’s policy planks and that left Paddy chortling.

      • Colonial Viper 24.2.1

        Yeah I noticed that one. And I was very interested that Gower questioned Cunliffe on being too light blue. But Paddy missing all those chances to put PM aspirant Cunliffe on the spot about serious stuff, instead of trying to force DC to stay on small picture soap opera dramatics.

  24. dimebag russell 25

    a moran is something that begins with f and ends with i and votes national.

  25. Paul 26

    Such a pity that the New Zealand government does not take the same care for its citizens as the Japanese government.

    Herald bias watch.
    Note is is the Japanese who are accused of taking ”the hard line” rather than New Zealand as they slavishly follow the neo-liberal policies of large corporates.

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    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
    7 days 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
    7 days 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 ...
    1 week ago
  • 1000 of these now
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    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
  • The freshwater mussel housing crisis: eviction by invasive weeds?
    Tom Moore Traditionally a food source and cutting tool, freshwater mussels/kākahi are now widely valued as water filters that help clean our waterbodies and maintain ecosystem health throughout Aotearoa. The improvement they provide in water quality can make it easier for other animals to live in streams and rivers, as ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Back it up Luxon: endorsing the destructive past is not actually the way forward
    And to think he gave all the potential goodwill away with that moronic, cult-like statement (repeated ad nauseam by many National hardliners) that Key is quite simply “the greatest PM we ever had”… Installation complete: this was nothing ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks 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 ...
    20 hours ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    1 day 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 ...
    5 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 ...
    6 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
  • Closer cooperation with Korean horse racing industry
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters met with Korea Racing Authority Chairperson Nak Soon Kim in Seoul today to discuss closer cooperation between the New Zealand and Korean horse racing industries. As part of the visit to the Seoul Racecourse, Mr Peters witnessed ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Otago to lead digital creativity
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10 million to establish Otago as the centre of New Zealand’s creative digital industry over the next ten years, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “The initiative will bring us closer to the vision of ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Young Otago students encouraged to take on forestry careers
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF)’s skills and employment programme will help young Otago people into long-term forestry careers, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Te Ara Mahi will invest $63,000 in the 2020 school year to support eight 17 and 18 ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF backing Dunedin’s waterfront ambitions
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will support local plans to revitalise and stimulate economic development opportunities in Otago, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The four Regional Economic Development Ministers have approved an in-principle investment of $19.9 million towards the region’s ...
    3 weeks ago
  • M. Bovis eradication progress welcomed
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is pleased to have received the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) report on the Coalition Government’s Mycoplasma bovis eradication efforts, which shows significant progress in the fight against the disease. New Zealand First Spokesperson for Primary Industries, Mark Patterson, says the report’s findings ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF boosts Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sector
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development Hon David Parker, Minister for Trade and Export Growth The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing to support economic growth opportunities for Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sectors, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Trade and Export Minister David Parker announced today. Almost $20 million ...
    3 weeks 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
    47 mins 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
    3 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
    19 hours 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
    19 hours 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
    20 hours 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
    23 hours 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
    24 hours 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
    3 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
    4 days ago
  • Disability Action Plan 2019 – 2023
    “The new Disability Action Plan 2019–2023 moves us towards the inclusive and accessible New Zealand that this government has committed to,” Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today.  “The Action Plan was designed by disabled people, their family and supporters, the disability sector and government agencies. It will ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Joint Statement – Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting
    Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting 14 November 2019 Joint Statement 1. Defence Ministers Ron Mark and Dr Ng Eng Hen today conducted their third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting in Singapore. 2. Building on the Enhanced Partnership signed between both countries in May this year, this annual meeting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Sexual Violence Legislation Bill has its first reading
    A Bill to improve the court system’s response to sexual violence has passed its first reading in Parliament today. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Sexual Violence Legislation Bill will reduce the trauma sexual violence complainants experience in court, while maintaining defendants’ fundamental rights and making sure the trial process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Streamlined business invoicing a step closer
    Streamlined payment practices are a step closer for Kiwi businesses with the formal launch of New Zealand’s e-Invoicing framework. Small Business Minister Stuart Nash says the government has now established the structure to enable automated and direct data exchange between the accounting systems of buyers and sellers. “The move to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More frontline biosecurity officers protecting NZ
    Another 51 quarantine officers and four new biosecurity detector dog teams will help protect New Zealand from invasive pests and diseases this summer, says Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “The Government is delivering on its commitment to strengthen New Zealand’s biosecurity system and support our valuable primary sector “New Zealand’s flora, fauna ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ space economy worth $1.69 billion
    A new report has found New Zealand’s space sector contributed $1.69 billion to the economy in the last financial year and employs 12,000 people, Minister for Economic Development Phil Twyford announced today. The report by Deloitte was commissioned by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and shows New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Chair for Royal Commission into Abuse
    Judge Coral Shaw has been appointed as the new Chair of the Royal Commission into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-based Institutions, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. "Judge Shaw, who is currently one of the inquiry commissioners, is extremely well qualified for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Better mental health facilities for Palmerston North
    The Government has confirmed its third major mental health facility upgrade since the Budget, this time at Palmerston North Hospital. The Prime Minister and Health Minister today visited MidCentral DHB to announce that $30 million has been allocated to upgrade its acute mental health facility. It follows earlier announcements in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Bowel Screening hits halfway point
    The roll out of the National Bowel Screening Programme has reached the halfway mark, with 10 out of 20 District Health Boards now part of the programme. MidCentral DHB, which covers Palmerston North, Manawatu and surrounding districts, this week became the latest to DHB to offer free bowel screening to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More vaccines for meningococcal disease
    The Government welcomes PHARMAC’s decision to fund a vaccine to protect young people from meningococcal disease from 1 December this year. “Meningococcal disease is a serious threat which people at higher risk should be protected from,” says Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter. “The combined pharmaceutical budget was increased by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Fisheries innovation projects supported
    Groups involved with innovative fisheries research projects are encouraged to apply for government support in the latest funding round from the Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures programme. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash says the SFF Futures funding is designed to be flexible enough to support small or large projects across a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government fixes culturally arranged marriage visa issue
    The Government has fixed an issue affecting how Immigration New Zealand has processed visa applications for culturally arranged marriages, which will now see a consistent process applied which ensures people with legitimate arranged marriages can visit New Zealand while also preventing any rorting of the system. Earlier this year Immigration ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Extension for Royal Commission into Mosque attacks
    The Royal Commission into the Attacks on Christchurch Mosques will report back on 30 April 2020 to give it more time to hear submissions and consider information, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. The Royal Commission was originally scheduled to report back to Government by 10 December 2019. “There has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Terrorism and Trade on agenda as Foreign Minister visits the United States
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington DC today to attend a ministerial meeting focused on defeating ISIS, and to continue pursuing New Zealand’s trade opportunities. Mr Peters will participate in a meeting of Foreign and Defence Ministers from key countries contributing to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Hoiho get extra support alongside 168 community conservation groups backing nature
    The recently crowned Bird of the Year, the hoiho/yellow eyed penguin, is getting a much needed helping hand alongside more than 168 other community conservation projects announced Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage today. 168 community conservation projects throughout New Zealand are benefiting from $8 million in government grants, including $500,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • New safety measures for modified pistols
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