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Open mike 08/01/2014

Written By: - Date published: 7:04 am, January 8th, 2014 - 71 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 right up to the mike …

71 comments on “Open mike 08/01/2014”

  1. i made a major discovery about colin craig this morning..

    ..that i feel i should share with you..

    ..i joined two pulsating/obvious dots..

    ..and was then driven to cannabilise/re-write the lyrics..

    ..of a kim carne song..

    ..and yes..colin craig really has..

    ..’ann coulter eyes’..


    phillip ure..

  2. McFlock 2

    Great Britain shows once more that tories hate freedom: ASBOs set to become IPNAs. George Monbiot describes the almost-passed bill for injunctions to prevent nuisance and annoyance. Anyone aged ten or more can be locked up for causing “annoyance”. As Monbiot puts it:

    The new injunctions and the new dispersal orders create a system in which the authorities can prevent anyone from doing more or less anything. But they won’t be deployed against anyone. Advertisers, who cause plenty of nuisance and annoyance, have nothing to fear; nor do opera lovers hogging the pavements of Covent Garden. Annoyance and nuisance are what young people cause; they are inflicted by oddballs, the underclass, those who dispute the claims of power.

    • felix 2.1

      Yay, turn our cities into giant privately owned malls where “loitering without intent to shop” is a punishable offense.

      That’s the libertarian paradise, isn’t it? Every space controlled by private hands.

      • millsy 2.1.1

        Libertarianism = privatisation of dictatorship.

        • aerobubble

          So you are saying that a love of liberty leads to private dictatorship.

          I would suggest that inept love of liberty, like that exhibited in the American Republican party, is doing so.

      • greywarbler 2.1.2

        Have fallen for Giles cartoons at last. He would have had something to draw about this.
        But one was appropriate in the Daily Express of 5/7/1979 Policeman addressing leader of toddlers trespassing on the grass in a park.
        ‘You realise, sir, you are contributing to the ‘avalanche of lawlesness threatening to engulf our civilisation’.

        • Anne

          Thank you for reminding me of Giles greywarbler. A cartoonist supremo. Nobody was sacrosanct.

          feast on them

          I love the one highlighted during the Cold War – as seen through the eyes of MI5 and MI6? And the Giles family… don’t you love the dear little children.

          It was fictitious family but Giles did admit that some of the characters were based on members of his own family.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.3

        Otherwise known as feudalism.

    • Colonial Viper 2.2

      One word. Totalitarian.

  3. felix 3

    Getting a lot of moderation lately. Was it something I said? Is it ‘cos I is black?

    • karol 3.1

      I’m not aware of any gravitar moderation.

    • mickysavage 3.2

      Perish the thought felix!

      Akismet does some strange things sometimes.

    • lprent 3.3

      Not as far as I am aware. However akismet got removed because they kind of fell over in the silly season.

      I’m using a system that looks much more closely at *how* the comments are posted to the site with a few quiet details that should be done by anything talking to wordpress. Are you using a RSS feeder?

      BTW: The site software only appears to have a colour discrimination against people with polkadots with high amounts of puce. Some kind of stylistic folly methinks…. Either that or a coulrophobia issue.

  4. Philj 4

    New low for RNZ on Summer program with Suzie and Caitlin. Topic : Auckland University study into blood spray patterns from bullets to the human head! Using a USA pistol, (not used in NZ.) The relevance and lack of judgement by RNZ in broadcasting this item is appalling. What has happened to, once proud, RNZ? It’s gone the way of TVNZ. Lead by Jim, Kathryn, Suzie, Simon, Noelle, it’s off to the sewer. Makes Matinée Idle appear ok! RNZ R. I. P. Where to turn to for sensible, informed media in NZ?

    • infused 4.1

      What’s wrong with it?

      You a little squeamish or something?

      • greywarbler 4.1.1

        There is often talk about blood splatter in murder cases. It’s relevant because of the violence that is inherent in society and not repressed. Police and experts are interested. I think it was a factor in the Bain case. Sorry but it can’t be dismissed as sensational crap from the USA. Wish we could. Or blame it on Canada, or anywhere.

  5. Morrissey 5

    Why is RODNEY HIDE’s nonsense on the Editorial page?
    The “news” is as biased, ridiculous and untrustworthy as ever

    Q—What do you do for a living?
    A—I am a communicator.
    Q—What do you communicate? Scarlet fever? Apprehension?

    —A.J. Liebling, The Press (Pantheon, 1961)

    If you read the newspapers, listen to the radio or—worst choice of all—watch television in order to see what’s going on in the world, you will occasionally, even regularly, feel a sense of despair: not only at the events being described, but at the flagrantly partisan and irresponsible treatment of those events by the “reporters” and studio anchors, as well as the headline writers and copywriters for not only third-rate tabloids like the New Zealand Herald, but also for quality broadsheets ( 😀 ) like the Waikato Times, Dom-Post and ODT.

    Here’s a representative sample, scribbled in disbelief and anger at odd moments during the last few days….

    “Sharon was known for bold tactics and an occasional refusal to obey orders.”
    —Ian Deitch (AP), in the NZ Herald, 3 January 2014

    “…Ramadi and Fallujah, where U.S. forces once fought desperate battles against al-Qaeda…”
    —David Martin, CBS, on Prime TV’s 5:30 News, 4 January 2014

    “Fallujah was pacified by U.S. troops in 2004…”
    —Paul Brennan, 9 a.m. News, Radio NZ National, 5 January 2014

    “Biggs has the last word”. “Cheeky floral tribute a final statement from Great Train Robber”
    —an entirely laudatory AP, AAP report of Ronald Biggs’ funeral “celebration”, Herald on Sunday, 5/1/14

    “Death by dogs disputed”. “Commentators debate truth about death of Korean leader’s uncle”
    Herald on Sunday, 5/1/14

    But as bad as this floodtide of trivia, this mountain of distortion and falsehood, this monumental failure by the “news” organisations might be, there is actually something much worse than people like David Martin of CBS, who are after all only acting as functionaries in the service of corporations much bigger and more powerful than they are. The most chilling feature of the “news”—more disturbing than hard-working servants like Martin, Blitzer, Ananpour, Paxman, Wark, Espiner and (shudder) Dallow—is the ideological fanatic who operates as a “commentator”. In spite of the neverending moaning by some that journalists are “liberals” and “leftists”, anyone who actually looks at a few papers and watches TV and listens to the radio will see that the right wing—and usually the most extreme, unhinged part of the right wing—is running wild, unchecked and unhindered over the Op-Ed pages of the mainstream press and in the chairs reserved for guest commentators and “pundits”.

    You know the phenomenon of the extreme right wing commentator very well. He (or she) has stunned you on occasion and has left you shaking your head, or screaming at the television screen, and wondering: why the HELL is Bill O’Reilly talking about this?—Karl du Fresne knows NOTHING!—Bat Ye’or is bat-freaking INSANE! The roll-call of this cadre of ideological despots is long and inexhaustible; there are right wing “think tanks” and journalism schools producing these vacuous but self-important talking heads as regularly and reliably as India churns out top-class cricketers. In North America, there is Glenn Beck, David Brooks, David Frum, Sean Hannity, Charles Krauthammer, Bill Maher, Daniel Pipes, Bill O’Reilly, William Safire—and hundreds more. In Great Britain there is Niall Ferguson, Simon Heffer, Boris Johnson, Dame Ann Leslie, Melanie Phillips, Nick Robinson, Bat Ye’or—and hundreds more.

    New Zealand and Australia‘s round-up of right-wing reactionaries let loose in the top paddock is equally dismal. It includes: John Ansell, Dr. Michael Bassett, Andrew Bolt, Karl du Fresne, Stephen Franks, Matthew (“I loved Mandela”) Hooton, Alan Jones, Steve Price, David Round, John Tamihere and hundreds of others too dim, depressing and outrageous to mention. (Tune in to Jim Mora’s Panel show if you want to hear some of the worst of them indulge in an uninterrupted rant.)

    To compound the faux news that dominated its pages, the 5 January edition of the Herald on Sunday carried a typically bizarre piece by the notorious ACT loon and science-denier Rodney Hide, entitled “Heat gone out of climate claims”. The great thinker opens his barrage of crap with this pearler: “Future historians may point to this one ironic event as the trigger that finally ended the public fear of global warming.” He goes on to sneer at Al Gore and at the “nuttiness” of climate scientists. Hide uses the word “nuttiness” three times, and his sub-editors at the Herald on Sunday compound his mischief by using it a fourth time—in an enlarged, highlighted excerpt: “That’s the climate alarmists’ nuttiness in a nutshell: nothing proves them wrong; everything proves them right.” Hide’s garbage appears on the editorial page, which some people might have thought was for considered and serious writing. Such a placement, aided and abetted by the highlighting of the “nuttiness” quotation, bestows a degree of ex cathedra authority on a piece of writing which, in its poverty of thought and its infelicity of expression, as well as its lame attempts at humour, would embarrass a moderately intelligent Year 9 student.

    The overall effect of this is not just to confuse and mislead the listener, or viewer, or reader. Intelligent consumers of this willfully dishonest and/or fantastical and/or depraved “product” realize that it is a vital part of a disinformation regime in which everything we see and understand is cast into doubt. News coverage like this creates a situation in New Zealand, and in every country where people like David Martin of CBS are entrusted with reporting on Iraq and people like Rodney Hide are allowed to write crazed rants against science, very like the situation which pertained in Soviet-bloc countries in the 1970s, where nobody trusted APN or TASS or Pravda, and the intelligentsia simply recognized that they were not to be believed at all. And CBS, as anyone who remembers its bloodthirsty cheerleading from its flag-bedecked studios during the aggression against Iraq in both 1990 and 2003 will know, is a de facto official news channel—along with the other flag-wavers and Obama-cultists at ABC, NBC and CNN, as well as the BBC, Radio New Zealand and TVNZ.

    Now you might be thinking: at least there’s Bryan Crump on nights on Radio NZ National. At least there’s one place we can go to hear intelligent and civilized talk. At least there is an island of civilization and rationality amongst all the nonsense. But not so fast! Among the mostly excellent line-up of guests for this year’s “Monday Night Thinkers” feature is…. Rodney Hide. For such a prospect, there is really only one appropriate response….

  6. geoff 6

    A pic of wealth inequality in the USA. I wonder what a NZ version look like.


  7. Ron 7

    How can NZ get a non commercial radio network that does not require you to check your brain before listening.
    We have what I believe is one of the highest radio station per head of population in the world but they are all the same. National Radio used to provide intelligent programming but these days it is starting to sound like one of the commercial networks.
    I would be more than happy to pay a subscription for a decent quality Radio service. I would love to have good quality music, documentaries, radio plays, book discussions, interviews where the subject is more important than the interviewer and all the other items that make up good station.
    Also would like to announcers to be capable of stringing two words together with out sounding like idiots.
    Is this too much to hope for?

  8. Pasupial 8

    The old divide and rule trick in action once more:


    “Shell country manager Rob Jager told the Otago Daily Times no decision had been made on where the company would base its shore operations, but it was between Dunedin and Invercargill…. [Otago Chamber of Commerce past-president] Mr McIntyre said Southland would surely be ”putting its best foot forward” and Dunedin should waste no time showing it could host Shell.”

    So any effective protest action by the Dunedin public will be met with threats to relocate south. It’s further from the drilling site, but with the smelter on the verge of shutting down; Invercargill will agree to almost anything for jobs (especially since the spill modelling doesn’t show much immediate risk for Southland west of the Catlins). But this ploy will not prevent protest action from the Dunedin Green Party at least:

    “Oceans spokesman, Gareth Hughes, said his party opposed all deep sea drilling, as it was too risky.

    ”This is a particularly risky environment – it’s between the roaring forties and the furious fifties. We saw one of the world’s largest oil companies Exxon Mobil pull out in 2010 because they said the conditions were too harsh and the location remote. Those conditions still exist for Shell.” “

    • Pasupial 9.1


      I’m not at all interested in clicking on one of your links without any indication of what cess-pit it’ll land me in (probably something to do with; data massaged by National’s pet pollster by the look of it). If you could quote some part of it in your comments, then I might be interested in that.

    • Bearded Git 9.2

      Thanks PR-always worth reading what the opposition are saying to get some perspective.

      My reading of the graphs is that Labour/Greens/Mana are more likely to get in next time than National, with Winston as the possible deal breaker. I reckon’ he will get 4.8% and miss out. Colin Crayfish is too loony to have much influence.

      • Puckish Rogue 9.2.1

        Well even if he gets in he won’t have much influence anyway, how much influence have any of the support parties really had?

        • fender

          John Banks has had plenty of influence, all detrimental from memory except his interest in animal welfare with regards to party drug testing.

      • Skinny 9.2.2

        Speaking of that old cod Winston Peters, I hear he could be going head to head with his sister (Labour) in the rat abandoning ship (Phil Heatley) seat of Whangarei. That’s if Peters sister beats a tranny for the Labour candidacy. All we need now is for bible basher Colin Craig to stand there too, the place is full of god botherers. So maybe Key will ask his blue ribbon lot from the North to vote Craig. Perhaps Dot Blob can add to an interesting electorate contest?

        • Draco T Bastard

          ^^ so much worthless abuse, so little content.

          • Skinny

            Oh great we have the content police amongst us! Touch a nerve did I old coot?

            • Draco T Bastard

              Bigotry such as your does tend to piss me off.

              • Skinny

                Ok sorry no malice intended, in hinsight speaking loosely. I like the tranny & Peters to a degree, the god botherers are mostly fine, however the brethrens up here are a weird bunch & Colin Craig has some dim views on the likes of Maori & reintroducing beat the kids is plain dumb. I’m no spring chicken myself 🙂

                • JK

                  yep – Skinny – from this point of view, it looks like it might be a verrrrry interesting selection for Labour ! Like you, I’m no spring chicken but I look forward to the revelations this election will bring forth in Whangarei ! It might be fun… for a change!

                  • Skinny

                    As long as idiots don’t drag the party through the mud in the process. The candidate will need to be sharp & fast on their feet and street wise so that narrows the field down some what. The last election the candidate was woeful as was his campaign crew, I understand the unions now hold sway, which is probably a good thing as organising is their thing.

                    • JK

                      You’ve got it wrong Skinny – I’m not so sure the unions hold sway – that’s just big talk, no real do, happening. A couple of those unionists are all talk …. no real reputation for doing anything real.
                      fascinating you thought the last election candidate was woeful – I thought he was pretty good but then i was part of his campaign crew so biased

                    • pat newman

                      Dear Skinny as the supposed woeful candidate last time, Id love to know what u based yr comment on… Easy to hide malicious uninformed comments behind a pseudonym isn’t it… I’m guessing from yr nasty personal comments, that you probably would be a member of a Whangarei Nutters Group. The results achieved here last election by the way, don’t point to me being a woeful candidate….

                    • Skinny

                      Sorry if I offended you, however i am from the school of hard knocks as should any aspiring MP be. Therefore I will contradict you Mr Newman the last election result; 


                      clearly shows you achieved below the national average for the NZP. Why so? because you and your campaign crew were woeful. You lot gave it your best crack which was simply not good enough.

                       So rather than front up with an inferior ‘patsy’ candidate why don’t you and your self serving bunch of glorified teachers pull your heads in and get behind the soon to be chosen candidate, think of the big picture.

                      Lastly, dollars for doughnuts the Unions hold sway alright, that is why Kelly will get the candidacy. But hey it’s a democracy… bring it!

        • RedBaronCV

          Why doesn’t Winston stand in North harbour. Wouldn’t that make things interesting?

          • Skinny

            Old grudges up North against Heatley (tho he has done his dash) & Mike Sabin who he hates like no other MP, + he gets votes from Maori & the senior voters rounded out by the church goers and racehorse set. He setup quite a good office in Whangarei last year & his brother & family are locals. Of course the likes of Shane Jones and Winston prefer being list MP’s as they can goof off without being tied down like an electorate MP who has to do some mundane work locally.

            • JK

              In reply to Skinny at on 10 Jan “Therefore I will contradict you Mr Newman the last election result ” the 2011 election result in Whangarei for Labour was on a par with every electorate result for Labour that year. The Labour vote throughout the country went down from the previous election. Whangarei was no different to the rest. An No – it won’t be the Unions who’ll be supporting Kelly : it’ll be the lawyers and others – get your actual facts right, nutcase !

              • Skinny

                Wrong you old trout the seat was all about the party vote, Newman gathered around a poultry 20 percent, which was pitiful considering the previous electorate results. You ran a poor campaign with a lazy candidate amongst many other things, that’s why your services as chairperson are no longer required.

                I’ve spoken to the main Union leaders here and they have confirmed they will not put their own contender up, instead will back the justice lawyer. The only conditions are the candiate must be fully funded to the maximum allowed in all regards, and they push a pro worker platform directed by the union affiliates.

                Here is a final tip ‘don’t bother’ trying to get back on the Executive as your not wanted by the majority of the members, your an unwelcome distraction to the task at hand. Now pull that hook out of your nose and sling it further North!

                • JK

                  Hey Skinny – for someone who has NEVER run in a campaign, let alone WIN one, you do speak a lot of malicious tosh. The “main union leaders here” (in Whangarei ?)
                  all TWO of them ! not much help coming from that lot …. as you should know from previous campaigns – but that’s right, you haven’t actually done any organising in a campaign, nor been very much use in a campaign except for banging the odd nail in a hoarding ….. so what do YOU know about it . All bloddy nothing …. just a load of old crock yourself. about time you were put out to rest ….. in those paddocks of yours.

            • pat newman

              Self serving bunch of glorified teachers eh skinny… You must have been strapped when at school to have such an opinion of teachers like that… Pity as u obviously come from Whangarei that you didn’t actually help out at the last election.. Then as I said earlier, its too easy to criticize from anonymity… By the way note Phil heatleys result was down over 10% on previous election

    • Rosie 9.3

      Nah. (@pukish)

  9. Puckish Rogue 10

    Another nail in the coffin for Labours hopes at the next election but at least you can guarantee a win in 2017

    [lprent: Idiot. Where was there *anything* about the Labour party in that post? FFS: bsprout is a well known green.

    Basically we do know where your brain appears to be – but you don’t have to tug on it here just to prove it again.

    And you just collected a 2 week ban for intimating this site was a Labour party site (see the about and the policy), and a 2 week ban for being a stupid trolling fool doing diversions at the top of posts.

    And moved it to OpenMike as being irrelevant to the post. ]

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 10.1

      Is that what you think? I think you might be forgetting a certain John Banks in the dock, and a certain Kim.com appeal hearing in April. And that’s assuming your confidence in the economic tea-leaves proves well-founded, as opposed to just some cocaine-addled banker talking shite.

      Labour/Green for the win in 2014.

      • Naki Man 10.1.1

        No one believes a word Krim.con says, the sooner the thieving fat Kraut is sent to the USA and locked up the better. There is to much news about Labour’s Pant’s Down Brown the serial masturbator for anyone to remember John Banks minor memory lapse.
        I wonder if the Russians will melt down that Gween Peace ship to make some more drilling pipes
        may as well use the steel for a worth while cause.
        PS Labour and the Gween Taliban are sunk.

        • fender

          You put an N there instead of Cr….i.e: Craki Man..

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead

          Sure. No-one believes him except the judge, who keeps on ruling in his favour.

          Poor wingnuts are especially reality-challenged today. That, and determined to demonstrate that they’re twelve years old – seriously, “gween”? Tee hee, speech impediments are so funny.

        • Sanctuary

          Slater appears to have sprung a leak in his sewer.

  10. Philj 11

    Thanks Morrissey.
    Your contribution made me feel a little better. Good to know I’m not the only one thinking along these lines. TV is dead now that quality Public Broadcasting has gone the way of the dodo.

    • Morrissey 11.1

      There are still many excellent programmes, though, Phil. And then there’s ConcertFM—still the best radio station in Australasia.

  11. Bob 12

    This has to be shared: http://e2nz.org/2014/01/08/8-year-old-boy-caught-drinkingdrugged-and-family-allow-it/

    The only encouraging thing in this video is the fact it was teenagers that stepped in to the situation to try to help the kid. Maybe the message is at least getting through to some young people….

  12. Rosie 13

    crap – a – roo. I had replied to pukish rogue at 9.2.1 (1.39pm) and it has disappeared. When I refreshed the page I got the Standard Banner only and a blank page. I think this happened to phil ure the other day. Just saying.

    Long story short, in response to PR I had mentioned Dunne’s influence as a support “party” – far too much in regards to his damaging voting choices: Asset sales, GCSB and TICS Act’s, Sky City and his intention to not vote for Hone’s Feed the Kids Bill (just off the top of my head)


    • Pasupial 13.1


      Before clicking on the “submit comment” button, I generally select the whole field and ctrl+C it; that way if it vanishes into the glitch zone, I can get it back with a quick ctrl+V.

      I heard that Gareth Hughes is considering going list-only next election, so it may be that Labour’s candidate will be only up against a nominal Green opponent in Ohariu-Belmont. Given his conduct this term, and a coordinated left alternative; I think Dunne and Untied History are done.

      • Rosie 13.1.1

        Hi Pasupial. Ha ha! I did that little trick last time and it worked………….

        Tane Woodley has been selected as the Green party candidate for Ohariu this year, and there is still no word on the Labour candidate. I even emailed the NZLP through their website to ask them but no word as yet. I’m busting to know.

        Yes, Dunne absolutely has to go this year, especially as it will be his 30th anniversary of holding the seat. I’m in Ohariu and will be working alongside a non party affiliated group to see what we can do to help move him out. I think it can be done but it will require hard work because he is like a comfortable pair of old slippers for many voters here. Mind you, 64.6% of Ohariu voters said NO in the asset sales referendum, so hopefully the wind is changing direction.

        • veutoviper

          Morning Rosie

          It seems that we will have to wait another six weeks to find out who the Labour Party candidate for Ohariu will be. The LP sent out a candidate selection update just before Christmas, Apparently nominations have closed for Ohariu with two people nominated and so a contested selection. A confirmation meeting is scheduled for 22 February. Names of the nominees were not provided in the update.

          Nominations for LP candidates for many electorates do not close until 28 February.

          • Rosie

            Thanks! Thats very helpful veutoviper and something to look forward to.

            I’m hoping the selection of the candidate will reflect the “specialness” of this electorate, in that there have been mutterings of discontent in the street from actual Dunne voters vs. the glue like nature of Dunne’s presence. A crow bar may still be required but the right candidate will be able to harness the section of the community that is waking and feeling pissed off and sold down the river by Dunne.

  13. joe90 14

    A real-time map of global winds to waste your day away.


  14. Draco T Bastard 15

    Too many MPs in that House

    But it found much of their discussion supported fewer MPs because participants “did not trust politicians to represent them with integrity”.


    The number of MPs has no bearing on them representing with integrity. That requires being able to hold them to account as the John Banks saga has shown. The problem that we have don’t have systems in place to ensure that the MPS are upholding the necessary standards and neither the police nor the MSM seem willing to even when there is obvious breaks in an MPs integrity.

    • fender 15.1


      I know a couple of smokers who answered NO to the are you a smoker question, but I don’t know anyone ‘pretending’ to be an MP, other than the obvious..

  15. Tracey 16

    That included Hawaii, where it was -8 degrees Celsius atop Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano…

  16. Morrissey 17

    Al Sharpton and Michael Moore versus two hateful bigots

    The Rev. Al Sharpton—one of those black leaders in whose memory the likes of Matthew Hooton need never feel obliged to make a mock tribute on Public Address—and Michael Moore try their best to keep things rational and civilized here. Valerie Plame also pitches in on the side of decency and tolerance, but this is Bill Maher‘s show, and with his watery English henchman Richard Dawkins he won’t be having any liberal crap about tolerance and understanding and context spoiling things this evening.

    Valerie Plame’s very first contribution to this conversation is a vacuous statement, chiming in to support Bill Maher just after he’s assured everyone that he is “not racist.” But after that vapid beginning, she does get better. She, like Bill Maher, is out of her intellectual depth though—I got the impression she was not overly bright when I read her (much redacted) book a year or so ago.

    Bill Maher, on the other hand, only gets worse as this clip goes on. Every single utterance he makes is bumptious, hateful and obnoxious. He is backed up, languidly, by Richard Dawkins, who is at his hypocritical worst here. If Dawkins has ever uttered even a mild statement condemning Christian or Jewish violence, could someone please post it up?

    Observers of this kind of pretentious but empty upper class drawing room honking will be aware Dawkins has taken up some of the burden since Christopher Hitchens died. At first glance, he would seem to fill Hitchens’ two key roles perfectly: 1.) the steady dripping of hateful slurs against all Muslims, at the same time scoffing at anyone who dares point out that there is also massive Christian and Jewish and Buddhist violence; and 2.) playing the suave and sophisticated Englishman, the sine qua non at any smart Manhattan soirée, where you will also hear the sort of ignorant, racist opinionating that Maher and Dawkins specialize in. A few generations it was “the Jews” on the receiving end of such vile bigotry; now it’s Arabs and Iranians.

    But watch carefully and you’ll see that there’s something gravely wrong here. Dawkins has not really bought in to the role that Maher expects him to play. Dawkins seems detached; he seems to be phoning it in instead of engaging in the scenery-chewing, snarling and faux outrage of a committed role-player like Hitchens. He nods wanly in support of Maher, but he doesn’t really seem to have his heart in it. Unlike Hitchens, he is incapable of summoning up the display of bogus rage needed when one engages in the kind of needling provocation Bill Maher expects of his back-up men.

    As for the pitiful Maher: his intellectual level is perfectly illustrated by the very last words he utters on the clip: “Hitchens said a great thing—” he burbles—and then he is cut off.

  17. adam 18

    Now I find Bill O’Reilly a distasteful man most of the time. But today, he crossed a line, from being distasteful idiot on the right, to a numb skull who deserves to be retired from the media forever. This is from my libertarian capitalist mates, even they are finding him and fox news nothing more than propaganda for arch-conservatives. I wont repeat what they said as children may be watching, except to say, this is an example of out of touch conservatives, whose grip on reality has failed.


    Read at own peril – it will disturb.

  18. Draco T Bastard 19

    Efforts to curb unbridled growth that’s killing the planet

    A full world
    Nineteenth century economists assumed that the economy would stop growing naturally, reaching “a very pleasant steady state,” said UC Berkeley economist Richard Norgaard, chairman of the Delta Independent Science Board advising California on water issues, and a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. “People would have more time for the arts and less time spent working.”

    Sometime in the 20th century, the idea that the economy must grow became a truism, he said, yet “there is no theoretical reason why the economy has to keep growing.”

    In fact an economy must not keep growing as that will destroy the environment totally.

    The first thing we need to do is to tell the politicians and business people that we will no longer support more growth. We’ve had massive growth over the last three decades and yet poverty is worse than ever and so it’s obvious that growth is not the panacea to poverty.

    • Colonial Viper 19.1

      Classifying the human species

      • Draco T Bastard 19.1.1

        The scary thing about that is just how accurately it describes humans but, then, art has been doing that in subtle and not so subtle ways for millennia.

  19. Draco T Bastard 20

    Pōwhiri and gender essentialism

    But I will not sit idly back and let this discussion be derailed by the Speaker of the House and the dominant culture or by Māori men justifying gender essentialism based on a context that no longer afflicts our interactions with each other. Tikanga is fluid. It can adapt. But its up to Māori to decide if they will adapt.

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  • New Zealand First disappointed that Section 70 spouses won’t get relief
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand First is disappointed that the removal of the spousal deductions has had to be delayed by the Ministry fo Social Development, due to COVID19 workload pressures. “New Zealand First has always stood for fairness when it comes to superannuation ...
    1 day ago
  • Winston Peters receives petition demanding more protection for nurses
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First On the steps of Parliament today the Leader of New Zealand First, Rt Hon Winston Peters received a petition from registered nurse Anna Maria Coervers, requesting an amendment to the Protection for First Responders Bill which will ensure the legislation also include registered ...
    1 day ago
  • Week That Was: Getting our economy moving
    It's been a busy seven days as we start to rebuild New Zealand together. From delivering extra support for small businesses, to investing in our artists and arts organisations, to cutting red tape on home DIY projects, we're rolling out our plan to get the economy and New Zealand moving ...
    2 days ago
  • Winston Peters: If protests condoned ‘why are we not at level 1?’
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says alert level 2 restrictions have to be discussed during today's Cabinet meeting. Thousands gathered across the country, including at Parliament, yesterday for Black Lives Matter marches where social distancing and mass gathering rules were flouted. Mr Peters said the breaching of Alert Level 2 rules at ...
    2 days ago
  • Northland rail work to help create regional jobs
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of State Owned Enterprises KiwiRail’s Northland rail upgrade steps up another gear today and will help Northland recover from the impacts of COVID-19, State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters says. The Government is investing $204.5 million through the Provincial Growth Fund to ...
    2 days ago
  • Green Party statement on the death of George Floyd
    “Today and every day we stand in solidarity with George Floyd’s family, friends and community who feel pain and fear about his untimely death at the hands of Minneapolis police”, said Green Party Co-leader and Māori Development spokesperson Marama Davidson. ...
    3 days ago
  • Lake Brunner’s Mount Te Kinga to go Predator Free
    Fletcher Tabuteau, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Hon Eugenie Sage, Minister of Conservation The West Coast forests of Mount Te Kinga at Kotuku Whakaoho/Lake Brunner are the latest predator free project to receive Government funding, announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage and Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher ...
    5 days ago
  • Green Party welcomes crucial financial support for creatives
    The Green Party says new government support for creatives and artists is a vital lifeline for a sector struggling to survive the COVID crisis. ...
    6 days ago
  • Strongest ever water reforms mean swimmable rivers within a generation
    The Green Party says major freshwater reforms announced today provide the strongest ever protections of our waterways, to help ensure the next generation can swim in the rivers of Aotearoa. ...
    6 days ago
  • Greens work to secure inquiry into Wild West student accommodation sector
    The Green Party has begun the process for a Select Committee inquiry into student accommodation, which has been exposed during COVID-19 as an under-regulated sector that straddles students with unfair debt. ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand joins global search for COVID-19 vaccine
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Megan Woods, Minister of Research, Science and Innovation Hon Dr David Clark, Minister of Health Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods,  and Health Minister David Clark today announced a COVID-19 vaccine strategy, ...
    1 week ago
  • Budget 2020: Five things to know
    Budget 2020 is about rebuilding together, supporting jobs, getting business moving and the books back into the black. It’s an integral part of our COVID-19 economic response, and our plan to grow our economy and get New Zealand moving again. Here’s a quick look at the five top things you ...
    1 week ago
  • Coalition Government approves essential upgrades on Ōhakea Air Base
    The Coalition Government has approved $206 million in essential upgrades at Ōhakea Air Base.  Defence Minister Ron Mark said the money would be spent on improving old infrastructure. He said safety issues would be addressed, as well as upgrades to taxiways, accommodation and fresh, storm and waste water systems. "This ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Attributable to the Rt Hon Winston Peters
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First “I am not persisting with this case just for myself, but for all people who have had their privacy breached. Privacy of information is a cornerstone of our country’s democracy. Without it our society truly faces a bleak future. We now ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones moves to protect sawmills
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones has introduced a Bill to Parliament that he says will "force more transparency, integrity and respect" for the domestic wood-processing sector through the registration of log traders and practice standards. The Forests (Regulation of Log Traders and Forestry Advisers) Amendment Bill had its first reading in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green MP joins international call to cancel developing countries’ debt
    Green MP Golriz Ghahraman is joining over 300 lawmakers from around the world in calling on the big banks and the IMF to forgive the debt of developing countries, in the wake of the COVID crisis. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones swipes back at billion trees critics
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones says concerns that carbon foresters are planting pine trees that will never be harvested are the result of "misinformation". "The billion tree strategy is an excellent idea, unfortunately from time to time it's tainted by misinformation spread by the National Party or their grandees, hiding in scattered ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Budget boost for refugee families a win for compassion
    The Green Party welcomes funding in the budget to reunite more refugees with their families, ensuring they have the best chance at a new life in Aotearoa New Zealand. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • How Budget 2020 is supporting jobs
    This year’s Budget is about rebuilding New Zealand together in the face of COVID-19. Jobs are central to how we’re going to do that.There’s a lot of targeted investment for employment in this year’s Budget, with announcements on creating new jobs, training people for the jobs we have, and supporting ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Free period products in schools to combat poverty
    Young people in Waikato will be the first to have free access to period products in schools in another step to support children and young people in poverty,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.  During term 3, the Ministry of Education will begin providing free period products to schools following the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Response to charges in New Plymouth
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash has issued the following statement in response to charges filed against three Police officers this morning in the New Plymouth District Court. “Any incident involving a loss of life in Police custody is taken very seriously. The charges today reflect the gravity of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Temporary changes to NCEA and University Entrance this year
    Further temporary changes to NCEA and University Entrance (UE) will support senior secondary school students whose teaching and learning have been disrupted by COVID-19. “The wellbeing of students and teachers is a priority. As we are all aware, COVID-19 has created massive disruption to the school system, and the Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Extended terms for the directors of the Racing Industry Transition Agency
    Minister for Racing Winston Peters today announced that the terms for the directors of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) have been extended to 30 June 2021. Due to the COVID-19 crisis the transition period has been extended to ensure that the Racing Industry Bill can complete its progress through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Healthy Homes Standards statement of compliance deadline extended
    The deadline for landlords to include detailed information in their tenancy agreements about how their property meets the Healthy Homes Standards, so tenants can see the home they are renting is compliant, has been extended from 1 July 2020 to 1 December 2020.  The Healthy Homes Standards became law on 1 July 2019. The Standards are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission board appointments announced
    Justice Minister Andrew Little today announced details of further appointments to the Criminal Cases Review Commission. “I am pleased to announce Paula Rose QSO OStJ as Deputy Chief Commissioner for a term of five years commencing on 15 June 2020,” said Andrew Little. “I am also pleased to announce the ...
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    1 day ago
  • Release of initial list of supported training to aid COVID-19 recovery
    The Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) will pay costs of learners of all ages to undertake vocational education and training The fund will target support for areas of study and training that will give learners better employment prospects as New Zealand recovers from COVID-19 Apprentices working in all industries ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Emission trading reforms another step to meeting climate targets
    The Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will finally start to cut New Zealand’s greenhouse gas pollution as it was originally intended to, because of changes announced today by the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw. The changes include a limit on the total emissions allowed within the ETS, rules to ensure ...
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    2 days ago
  • Queen’s Birthday Honours highlights Pacific leadership capability in Aotearoa
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says the Queen’s Birthday 2020 Honours List provides an abundance of examples that Pacific people’s leadership capability is unquestionable in Aotearoa. “The work and the individuals we acknowledge this year highlights the kind of visionary examples and dedicated community leadership that we need ...
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    2 days ago
  • Govt backing horticulture to succeed
    The Government is backing a new $27 million project aimed at boosting sustainable horticulture production and New Zealand’s COVID-19 recovery efforts, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our economy. During and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Applications open for forestry scholarships
    Applications have opened for 2021 Ngā Karahipi Uru Rākau – Forestry Scholarships, which will support more Māori and women to pursue careers in forestry science, says Forestry Minister Shane Jones. “I’m delighted Te Uru Rākau is offering Ngā Karahipi Uru Rākau – Forestry Scholarships for the third year running. These ...
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    3 days ago
  • Excellent service to nature recognised
    The Queen’s Birthday 2020 Honours List once again highlights the dedication by many to looking after our native plants and wildlife, including incredible work to restore the populations of critically endangered birds says Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage. Anne Richardson of Hororata has been made an Officer of the New ...
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    3 days ago
  • Wetlands and waterways gain from 1BT funding
    The Government will invest $10 million from the One Billion Trees Fund for large-scale planting to provide jobs in communities and improve the environment, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Forestry Minister Shane Jones have announced. New, more flexible funding criteria for applications will help up to 10 catchment groups plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New fund for women now open
    Organisations that support women are invited to apply to a new $1,000,000 fund as part of the Government’s COVID-19 response. “We know women, and organisations that support women, have been affected by COVID-19. This new money will ensure funding for groups that support women and women’s rights,” said Minister for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt supports King Country farmers to lift freshwater quality
    Healthier waterways are front and centre in a new project involving more than 300 King Country sheep, beef and dairy farmers. The Government is investing $844,000 in King Country River Care, a group that helps farmers to lift freshwater quality and farming practice, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced today. “Yesterday ...
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    5 days ago
  • Libraries to help with jobs and community recovery
    A major funding package for libraries will allow them to play a far greater role in supporting their communities and people seeking jobs as part of the economic recovery from COVID-19. “Budget 2020 contains over $60 million of funding to protect library services and to protect jobs,” says Internal Affairs ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Support for arts and music sector recovery
    A jobseekers programme for the creative sector and four new funds have been set up by the Government to help our arts and music industry recover from the blow of COVID-19. Thousands of jobs will be supported through today’s $175 million package in a crucial economic boost to support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Legislative changes to support the wellbeing of veterans and their families
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has welcomed the First Reading of a Bill that will make legislative changes to further improve the veterans’ support system.  The Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill No 2, which will amend the Veterans’ Support Act 2014, passed First Reading today. The bill addresses a number of ...
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    6 days ago
  • Christ Church Cathedral – Order in Council
    Views sought on Order in Council to help fast track the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Hon Poto Williams, will be seeking public written comment, following Cabinet approving the drafting of an Order in Council aimed at fast-tracking the reinstatement of the ...
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    6 days ago
  • New Zealanders’ human rights better protected in new Bill
    The law setting out New Zealanders’ basic civil and human rights is today one step towards being strengthened following the first reading of a Bill that requires Parliament to take action if a court says a statute undermines those rights. At present, a senior court can issue a ‘declaration of ...
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    6 days ago
  • Deep concern at Hong Kong national security legislation
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today reiterated the deep concern of the New Zealand Government following confirmation by China’s National People’s Congress of national security legislation relating to Hong Kong. “New Zealand shares the international community’s significant and long-standing stake in Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability,” Mr Peters said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government invests in New Zealand’s cultural recovery
    Thousands of artists and creatives at hundreds of cultural and heritage organisations have been given much-needed support to recover from the impact of COVID-19, Prime Minister and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Jacinda Ardern announced today. “The cultural sector was amongst the worst hit by the global pandemic,” Jacinda ...
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    6 days ago
  • Better protection for New Zealand assets during COVID-19 crisis
    Key New Zealand assets will be better protected from being sold to overseas owners in a way contrary to the national interest, with the passage of the Overseas Investment (Urgent Measures) Bill. The Bill, which passed its third reading in Parliament today, also cuts unnecessary red tape to help attract ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Cleaning up our rivers and lakes
    Setting higher health standards at swimming spots Requiring urban waterways to be cleaned up and new protections for urban streams Putting controls on higher-risk farm practices such as winter grazing and feed lots Setting stricter controls on nitrogen pollution and new bottom lines on other measures of waterway health Ensuring ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Record year for diversity on Govt boards
    The Government is on the verge of reaching its target of state sector boards and committees made up of at least 50 percent women, says Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter and Minister for Ethnic Communities Jenny Salesa. For the first time, the Government stocktake measures the number of Māori, ...
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    7 days ago
  • New appointments to the Commerce Commission
    The Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister and Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister, Kris Faafoi, has today announced the appointment of Tristan Gilbertson as the new Telecommunications Commissioner and member of the Commerce Commission. “Mr Gilbertson has considerable experience in the telecommunications industry and a strong reputation amongst his peers,” ...
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    7 days ago
  • Historic pay equity settlement imminent for teacher aides
    The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa have agreed to settle the pay equity claim for teacher aides, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This will see more than 22,000 teacher aides, mostly women, being valued and paid fairly for the work they do. “Teacher aides are frontline ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt delivers security for construction subcontractors
    Subcontractors will have greater certainty, more cashflow support and job security with new changes to retention payments under the Construction Contracts Act says Minister for Building and Construction, Jenny Salesa. A recent review of the retentions money regime showed that most of the building and construction sector is complying with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and Singapore reaffirm ties
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have marked the first anniversary of the New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership with a virtual Leaders’ Meeting today. The Enhanced Partnership, signed on 17 May 2019, provides the framework for cooperation across the four main areas of trade, defence and ...
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    1 week ago
    On 17 May 2019, New Zealand and Singapore established an Enhanced Partnership to elevate our relations. The Enhanced Partnership – based on the four pillars of trade and economics, security and defence, science, technology and innovation, and people-to-people links – has seen the long-standing relationship between our countries strengthen over the ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government investment supports the acquisition of new Interislander ferries
    State-Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters has welcomed KiwiRail’s announcement that it is seeking a preferred shipyard to build two new rail-enabled ferries for the Cook Strait crossing. “This Government is committed to restoring rail to its rightful place in New Zealand. Bigger, better ships, with new technology are yet another ...
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    1 week ago
  • Better protection for seabirds
    Better protection for seabirds is being put in place with a new National Plan of Action to reduce fishing-related captures, Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today.   The National Plan of Action for Seabirds 2020 outlines our commitment to reduce fishing-related captures and associated seabird ...
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    1 week ago
  • Milestone in cash flow support to SMEs
    Almost $1 billion in interest-free loans for small businesses More than 55,000 businesses have applied; 95% approved Average loan approx. $17,300 90% of applications from firms with ten or fewer staff A wide cross-section of businesses have applied, the most common are the construction industry, accommodation providers, professional firms, and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government protects kids as smoking in cars ban becomes law
    Thousands of children will have healthier lungs after the Government’s ban on smoking in cars with kids becomes law, says Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa. This comes after the third reading of Smoke-free Environments (Prohibiting Smoking in Motor Vehicles Carrying Children) Amendment Bill earlier today. “This law makes it ...
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    1 week ago
  • Parliament returns to a safe normal
    The special Epidemic Response Committee (ERC) has successfully concluded its role, Leader of the House Chris Hipkins said today. The committee was set up on 25 March by the agreement of Parliament to scrutinise the Government and its actions while keeping people safe during levels 4 and 3 of lockdown. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Foreign Minister makes four diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced four diplomatic appointments: New Zealand’s Ambassador to Belgium, High Commissioners to Nauru and Niue, and Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism. “As the world seeks to manage and then recover from COVID-19, our diplomatic and trade networks are more important than ever,” Mr Peters said. “The ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Bill to counter violent extremism online
    New Zealanders will be better protected from online harm through a Bill introduced to Parliament today, says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin. “The internet brings many benefits to society but can also be used as a weapon to spread harmful and illegal content and that is what this legislation targets,” ...
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    1 week ago
  • Mycoplasma bovis eradication reaches two year milestone in good shape
    New Zealand’s world-first plan to eradicate the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis is on track the latest technical data shows, says Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two years ago the Government, DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand and industry partners made a bold decision to go hard and commit ...
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    1 week ago
  • New payment to support Kiwis through COVID
    Further support for New Zealanders affected by 1-in-100 year global economic shock 12-week payment will support people searching for new work or retraining Work programme on employment insurance to support workers and businesses The Government today announced a new temporary payment to support New Zealanders who lose their jobs due ...
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    1 week ago
  • PGF reset helps regional economies
    The Provincial Growth Fund will play a vital role in New Zealand’s post-COVID-19 recovery by creating jobs in shorter timeframes through at least $600 million being refocused on projects with more immediate economic benefits, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The funding is comprised of repurposed Provincial Growth ...
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    2 weeks ago