Open mike 09/08/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, August 9th, 2019 - 144 comments
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144 comments on “Open mike 09/08/2019”

  1. SHG 1

    This is the whitest white-person thread of all time

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • SHG 1.1

      The Standard: totally not racist and not at all a totally tone-deaf echo chamber of white people

      [That’s another silly comment in a series of silly comments and you (should) know better. Your comments got moved to OM but you didn’t get booted off the site. As such, it is just a minor action to keep the flow of comments tidy, relevant and on-topic. My advice is to not read more (too much) into it – Incognito]

      • Incognito 1.1.1

        See my Moderation note @ 3:23 AM.

      • SHG 1.1.2

        The comments got moved from a place where they were relevant to a place where they were not. That’s bad moderation. Do better.

        [FYI, I did not move your comments but I fully agree with the move. Secondly, you don’t decide what Moderators here should or shouldn’t do, which means you don’t criticise or litigate moderation; asking for clarification, for example, is generally (but not always!) fine. Thirdly, I care little about the cause of disagreement for want of a better description but I do care about behaviour. That was bad commenting behaviour. Finally, it would be a silly choice IMO if you opt for a ban. Please do better – Incognito]

        • Robert Guyton

          "The bin" would have met general approval, imo.

          • SHG

            Racists don’t like being told they’re racists.

            • Robert Guyton

              So they're not realists then, racists?

              • greywarshark

                I've stretched my bubble gum as far as it will go I think, and just puffing a bit – the bubble is getting bigger – wow splatter all over my mouth.    Good for another go.  Got to keep pushing the envelope, I mean the gummy, and they make the strength and ingredients very long-lasting these days.   I haven't anything more important to do than blow bubbles and people get quite amused at my antics.

                It is all a delaying tactic I must confess.   I actually do have more important things to do but stay on hoping for some advance in the nature of progress, or the progress of nature, whatever.

        • Incognito

          See my Moderation note @ 2:09 PM.

        • weka

          I didn't move it either but I think the original comment was under one of my posts (wilding pines). It came late in the piece when I tend to let things slide more. It didn't make much sense in context and seemed a jabby, throw away comment that was trying to make a point but doing it badly. Can't really complain about it now being out of context when you didn't bother to make your point clearly*

          And yeah, please don't have a go at moderators.

          *TS does tend to reflect Pākehā values, but I'm still not sure why the wilding pine post or discussion specifically warranted comment.

  2. vto 3

    America is clearly in a state of civil war, or revolution, with a mass shooting every day…

    Or does everyone keep turning a blind eye and claim it's just a nutters with guns thing ..

    it has started. where and when will it end

    • riffer 3.1

      Hardly. With 329 million, even a tiny percentage of the population doing crazy stuff would still appear statistically significant to outsiders. Despite how mad it appears to us, I feel revolution is still some way off, and would require a near-total collapse of the  financial systems before that was to occur.

      • vto 3.1.1

        I disagree. Firstly, most revolutions and civil wars involve a small percentage of the population only, particularly at the beginning. Secondly, most revolutions and upheavals begin before people notice. 

        Let's look back in ten years time and see what history has to say about this and when it started..

        I would suggest pretty much every crowd at an event and every mall shopper will have this risk in their mind today and tomorrow and onwards… another indicator it is underway… the population is cowering

        • I feel love

          I saw a graph of mass shootings this year, USA at 400+ at number one, followed by 2 in India, then NZ at number 3 with one mass shooting. I also happened on an American's IG page the other day and it was just pictures upon pictures of guns, even celebrating his kids 5th birthday with guns. They really do have a problem uniquely theirs.

    • Cinny 3.2

      trump…… offers support and condolences in the wake of the latest mass shootings…. meanwhile, elsewhere in the USA, ICE is doing the biggest round up of  immigrants in ten years.

      He's driving the same narrative as the shooters are using and it's revolting.

      • vto 3.2.1

        Yes he needs to be removed from office… Trump claimed the mexicans were rapists and murderers etc, so some Trump follower went and shot them…

        total madness

      • Macro 3.2.2

        Yes I posted this last night:

        Couldn't sleep last night following those images of children suddenly bereft of their parents – many of whom had been in the US for many many years working and productive people. Insane and inhumane.

        • Macro

          It gets worse!

          ICE Raids Targeted Company Whose Workers Won Discrimination Lawsuit

          The arrests targeted chicken processing plants operated by Koch Foods, one of the largest poultry producers in the U.S. Last year, Koch Foods paid out $3.75 million to settle an Equal Employment Opportunities Commission class-action suit charging the company with sexual harassment, national origin and race discrimination, and retaliation against Latino workers at one of its Mississippi plants. Labor activists say it’s the latest raid to target factories where immigrant workers have organized unions, fought back against discrimination or challenged unsafe and unsanitary conditions. 

          ps This is not the infamous Koch Bros – but another group. 

        • joe90

          Amoral pricks.

        • joe90

          The Geheime Staatspolizei at work.

        • Infused

          You know this happened and started under Obama right?

          [Please explain your ambiguous comment and demonstrate it was not deliberately misleading or lying – Incognito]

          • Andre

            That's fkn shameless, brazenly repeating a Queens loofah-faced shitgibbon lie. Google Obama child separation and you'll be deluged with stuff showing how wrong that statement is. Here's just one:


          • McFlock

            Who gives a fuck? Seriously, you read about kids getting left at school because their parents have been rounded up, and the best response you can come up with is Obama did it too.

            And it's obvious that this isn't a continuation of Obama's policies – because if Obama had enthusiastically followed the midnight raid programme, dolt45 would be creating DACA on steroids and naturalising everyone who gets across the border.

          • Macro


            This did not happen under Obama.

            These ICE raids began under Bush. Obama put a stop to them and these are the first raids of this nature in a DECADE! 

            Stop spreading bullshit lies!

          • greywarshark

            infused   It seems you are spreading lies.   Do you think you are at the right address when you come here?     I think that a higher standard of communication is required.   Isn't there somewhere you can go who will swallow all your rats?

          • Incognito

            See my Moderation note @ 2:32 PM.

    • roblogic 3.3

      Americans are beginning to ask themselves the same question..

  3. Robert Guyton 4

    National's MP Hamish Walker puts his foot in it.

    "Intensive winter grazing is a vital practice used in Clutha-Southland by farmers. Without it, there would be serious repercussions for the area and as a flow-on effect our rural towns, such as Gore, Winton and Lumsden."

    Walker said farmers have made dramatic improvements in how they graze stock, including the fencing of waterways, the buffer zones around critical source areas and grazing crops strategically."

    • Cinny 4.1

      Yeah hamish… that's why the minister is doing something, because there is no problem…. lolz.  I guess hamish doesn't get out much, or he is blind.

      • vto 4.1.1

        but we need to keep making a mess..

        because otherwise the economy will suffer..


    • Rosemary McDonald 4.2

      Keep up Mr.Guyton…they have a long term plan.

    • Gabby 4.3

      Flow on effect eh Hamey? Hur hur. Liddle kiddies can go get shat on.

  4. Robert Guyton 5

    "Clutha-Southland MP Hamish Walker, who is the associate spokesperson for agriculture, said "the protesters at Ihumātao are standing in mud – why is it only farmers being targeted and not them?"


    "Walker said winter grazing working group was "more money down the drain" and "another orchestrated attack on farmers by this Government".

    "In light of the winter grazing photos released, the Government has chosen to establish yet another group to address the issue. Instead of getting around a table and having discussions to see what work is being done, or can still be done, they react as soon as a vegan movement shouts live cattle exports or an environmentalist shouts winter grazing."


    • marty mars 5.1

      wow no wonder he's a gnat – he thick bigtime

    • greywarshark 5.2

      Disgraceful thinking – shows the mentality and lack of education about the important matters for the country and ethical standards that all farmers sons should learn about.   Their schools are too busy drilling scientific and business-related knowledge into them during formal learning hours and in the rest how to keep fit and be competitive in sports.  Nothing about the philosophic understanding that an advanced developed nation would know.   All competition and person advancement using the money system, not human collaboration.

      I put up the link again about the UK study on the education of the wealthy and aspirational there and how parents don't care and love their children enough to give them the emotional ties that would result in a strong individual who is  empathetic and understanding of others.

      Britain’s public school system has for generations produced a high proportion of its political leaders, despite the number of children attending these schools representing a tiny fraction of the larger population….

      But a British psychotherapist says schools such as Eton produce damaged individuals and very poor leaders suffering a form of “privileged abandonment.”

      Dr Nick Duffell is the founder of the boarding school survivors organisation, he himself went to Oxford and taught at a boys’ boarding school, and is the author of The Making of Them: The British Attitude to Children and the Boarding School System, and more recently, Wounded Leaders: British Elitism and the Entitlement Illusion…

  5. Robert Guyton 7

    "For New Zealanders, one "immediate and striking recommendation" was to alter diets from being high in meat and dairy, to being more balanced with plant-based food choices. This would use less land and water and emit fewer greenhouse gases, Hayward said."

    Eat plants to help the climate, IPCC report suggests

    The report suggests a lot of other things as well:

    • Pat 7.1

      Somewhat more complicated than that….

      "The report makes clear that much of the onus is on industrial, transport and other emitters to urgently cut greenhouse emissions to give food growers the friendly climate they’ll need to feed a growing and increasingly affluent global population.

      Agriculture itself is in a tricky position: its existence as an industry is non-negotiable if people are going to continue to eat."

      • Robert Guyton 7.1.1

        It's complicated alright. So many things will have to change.

      • weka 7.1.2

        affluent countries need to lower their standard of living. Low hanging fruit: eat seasonally, eat local food. These drop emissions, but also sharpen the mind around what is involved in producing food for everyone, not just the people with the most money.

        • Pat

          Considering affluent (OECD) countries are responsible for the bulk of emissions they indeed should be making the most radical lifestyle changes….that involves far more than eating habits

          • weka

            yep, I was just responding to food issue, because it's coming up a lot at the moment, and eating plants from the other side of the world isn't much of an improvement for NZers over eating NZ farmed meat.

            Also using that as example of how affluent countries can do something meaningful. Thinking that the whole world can have our lifestyles is a madness, utter madness. We have to give away some of our privilege. It won't hurt us, it might make us a better country.

            • Pat

              Given the 80/20 rule it likely would make us a better country but I wouldnt hold my breath waiting for acceptance of such thought

            • Poission

              Meat is not actually mentioned in the report,its land use changes ie deforestation, (south america asia and africa.)

              There seems to be a lot of creative reporting in the press (mostly due to the hard reading of the report under a legal framework)

              you would struggle to find that land use changes are both a source and a sink (the emission imbalance due to deforestation)

              Land is simultaneously a source and a sink of CO2 due to both anthropogenic and natural drivers, making it hard to separate anthropogenic from natural fluxes (very high confidence). Global models estimate net CO2 emissions of 5.2 ± 2.6 GtCO2 yr-1 (likely range) from land use and land-use change during 2007-16. These net emissions are mostly due to deforestation, partly offset by afforestation/reforestation, and emissions and removals by other land use activities (very high confidence) (Table SPM.1)23.There is no clear trend in annual emissions since 1990 (medium confidence) (Figure SPM.1). {1.1, 2.3, Table 2.2, Table 2.3}

              The natural response of land to human-induced environmental changes such as increasing atmospheric CO2 concentration, nitrogen deposition, and climate change, resulted in global net removals of 11.2 +/– 2.6 Gt CO2 yr–1 (likelyrange) during 2007-2016 (Table SPM.1). The sum of the net removals due to this response and the AFOLU net emissions gives a total net land-atmosphere flux that removed 6.0+/-2.6 GtCO2 yr-1 during 2007-2016 (likely range). Future net increases in CO2 emissions from vegetation and soils due to climate change are projected to counteract increased removals due to CO2 fertilisation and longer growing seasons (high confidence). The balance between these processes is a key source of uncertainty for determining the future of the land carbon sink. Projected thawing of permafrost is expected to increase the loss of soil carbon (high confidence). During the 21st century, vegetation growth in those areas may compensate in part for this loss (low confidence). {Box 2.3, 2.3.1, 2.5.3, 2.7; Table 2.3}

              They also want limits on urban expansion ie removal of agriculture land for housing etc.

              The foremost take home message is the need to increase the sink capacity.

      • Drowsy M. Kram 7.1.3

        Ever increasing humans in ever decreasing circles…

        A Standard blast from ~2 years' past  –  /750816-2/

    • roblogic 7.2

      been reading a new book called "what the fast", by some AUT experts based off south auckland population studies and recent science into "low carb healthy fat" food. lots of healthy recipes

  6. Robert Guyton 8

    "There are now over 500 million people living in desert areas that would not have been considered deserts before the 1980s. A full quarter of the world's ice-free land mass is subject to land degradation as a result of human activity."

    I wonder how they define "land degradation" and whether they consider agriculture to be improving of degrading what was forested land?

  7. Dennis Frank 9

    Is the coalition govt really Putinesque?  Dunne thinks so.  Yet his reasoning actually reads better than one might expect.

    "Under this Bill, Parliament will no longer determine the question to be considered, which means there will be no opportunity for any public input through the select committee process. Rather, the referendum question will be set by Order-in-Council, (that means a regulation passed by the Executive Council on the recommendation of the Cabinet, which, in turn, means that the Cabinet will effectively decide  the question to be considered, without any external scrutiny)."

    I'm agnostic on this.  I can see merit in using efficient practical politics to produce a cabinet consensus on the questions to be put in the referenda.  Parliament's process could be messier & more time-consuming.  But if it turns out to be quicker & gets the result more efficiently, why not run the cabinet decision past parliament anyway?  Doing so would flush out any short-comings – which cabinet could consider as amendments – or confirm the merit of their decision.

  8. JohnP 10

    As we get to Day +4 after the police rarked things up at Ihumatao, Newsroom have done an interview with the Ihumatao camp's liaison with the police who notes that;

    "As part of reducing that footprint Tawha asked if mana whenua could move their presence to the Kaitiaki Village –  an area for which they’ve been served eviction notices by Fletcher Building.

    Many school groups had bookings to do tours of the stone fields in the coming weeks and SOUL was keen to continue the educational kaupapa there, she said.

    “He said he’d talk to Fletchers, and I said we’d have to talk to our people – that was it.”

    A decision was made to halt the talks for the day until both negotiators could consult their respective parties."

    That night the cops flooded the site, presumably because someone high up heard about the request and made a massive assumption about intentions, completely messing it all up in the process.

    Obviously District Commander Rogers stands by her statement that kaitiaki had already occupied that space and that they acted on "information" that they were going to retake the village.

  9. Peter 11

    Matthew Hooton has it that Julie Ann Genter should resign over her handling of communications to do with the Wellington transport plan."Genter is a disgrace to her party and herself and should either release her letter in full or resign," he says.

    Nothing unusual in that, simple politics and perspectives.

    Something that puts a perspective on the perspective is his bit, "It has even been reported that Julie Ann Genter and another Green MP threatened to resign if the tunnel went ahead before the tram."

    It has been reported? Is that bit added to give substance or merely chucking toys out of the cot because things aren't as he wishes?

    It has been reported? If I were to report that Matthew Hooton is a fuckwit with mental health issues someone can pick that up and use that in a headline story in the country's biggest media outlet saying, " It has even been reported that Matthew Hooton is a fuckwit with mental health issues?" 

    Already today on Newstalkzb news I've heard two politicians reported as saying something was or wasn't a case and then the final word being given to MP Sarah Dowie speaking directly on tape, that what they said couldn't be believed as if hers was the definitive and authoritative version of reality.

    Just another day of media with shit standards.

      • greywarshark 11.1.1

        I wish these pollies could be allowed to get on with plans that have been thought about and that offer a way forward and improvements without some carping shit coming along and throwing cow pats or other messy missiles at them in an attempt to start a stoush and stop the solution.

        • Sacha

          Doing the process properly is important though. I expect oppositions to hold governing parties accountable on such stuff. Murky spindoctors, not so much.

          • greywarshark

            How opposition parties choose to hold the governing parties accountable and for what is extremely important.   When the opposition acts like a murky spindoctor they are traitors to the citizens of the country.    Now that is the sort of emotive term that can bring the termites out of the woodwork!

      • dv 11.1.2

        Someone needed to sort the Wtn transport mess.

    • weka 11.2

      Fortunately its paywalled so most people won't be able to read it.

      • Cricklewood 11.2.1

        The artical on spinoff is interesting… tbh I find it a bit disapponting that the new govt is as bad as the old govt when it comes to accountablity and wearing of 'hats'. 

        Cant understand the secrecy either everyone knows and understands that the Greens are pro public transport and  for very good reason. They shouldnt be ashamed of using whatever leverage they have at their disposal to achieve what are very important changes in the NZ transport system.

  10. Andre 12

    WTF? How is it that jailhouse snitches can in any way be considered evidence reliable enough to be introduced at a trial without solid corroboration from non-jailhouse evidence?

    Frankly, if I were ever on a jury considering uncorroborated jailhouse snitch evidence, I'd view it as evidence the prosecutors were trying to do a frame-up.

  11. greywarshark 13

    Are Regional Councils useful and worth the money to run them or are they majorly a law unto themselves and a millstone to the Councils in their area trying to get stuff done that their constituents expect them to be in charge of?

    Arrowtown has a lot of air pollution.

    Otago Regional Councillor Michael Laws had himself called it to report burn-offs dropping ash on properties, and said the regulatory committee was ignoring increasing complaints, leading to people being more reckless with burn-offs.

    "It gives you an example of the bizarre priorities of the Otago Regional Council and their policy team, that they're trying to stop people burning wood in the dead of night, to stay warm, in their wood burner – but they refuse to do anything about the daytime pollution which is likely to have a more deleterious effect on communities," he said.

    Recently we have heard about Wellington buses, largely the work of the regional council there.    I see dv is concerned about that.

    Numerous problems are arising.    Should regional councils go or are they mostly okay, and problems should go to combined committees with a larger group coming from the concerned councils who can push for needed improvements to contested plans and systems?

    • greywarshark 13.1

      dv  You may have been thinking of this that has come out today 9/8 in the Scoop.

      Regional Council seeks $415m for “essential” new trains to carry more people

      • dv 13.1.1

        I was recalling the change over a couple? years ago. Then went with the cheaper option, paid drivers less. Lost drivers etc. Many buses cancelled AND flyer NOT included in metlink  software ETC !!!!!!

        • Dukeofurl

          That was decided by the previous regional council to the current one under the national governments  edict that lowest tender MUST win.

    • Graeme 13.2

      ORC are having real difficulties.  A large part of the problem is that they are Dunedin based and dominated due to population representation of the ward system, when most of the Council's work is in Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes which have little representation.  ORC didn't have an office in Queenstown for 3 years after the sole staff member here died.  It's a hangover from the goldrush days perpetuating Dunedin's economic model of clipping the ticket (raping and pillaging in some cases) of the Central Otago economy.

      Now that the Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes economy equals, and probably exceeds Dunedin's, especially if activity derived in Central is omitted from Dunedin, maybe it's time for a local government re-organisation around community of interest.

      A possible starting point could be DCC becoming a unitary covering the Taieri and Shag catchments, with the remainder of Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes amalgamating and also becoming unitary, or having a seperate Catchment Authority covering the Clutha catchment.

      ORC also have a huge problem with water permits that expire in 2021 and have to be renewed.  Generally these permits grossly over-allocate the catchments.  Since the permit holders (farmers mostly) are reluctant to accept a reduced allocation progress on renewals has been glacial at best to current situation of effectively back to square one.   Government intervention is probably inevitable.

      • greywarshark 13.2.1

        That is good backgrounding Graeme thanks.    Perhaps there need to be a series of meetings from gummint around the country and some new borders for local authorities drawn up. 

        There was a strong call I think Nick Smith led, for Nelson and Tasman to amalgamate in a Top of the south grouping but I don't know how the city and country can co-ordinate.    We have Nelson – Richmond (Tasman's main town) urban areas separated by playing grounds, settled suburbs and some industrial and farming area.    This is a bit like Napier and Hastings.  

        Nelson is a character town that is a Unitary Authority.

        Richmond is the growing area for housing with quite a big industrial estate.  It is the headquarters for Tasman District Council which is a Unitary Authority.  It abuts onto the Marlborough District Council and the West Coast District Council and Canterbury.

        The Nelson-Marlborough Regional Council was one of 13 regional councils established through the passing of the Local Government Act 1987. The council was established in the 1989 local government reforms, but disestablished only three years later in 1992, when its functions went to the unitary authorities of Nelson City Council, Tasman District Council, and Marlborough District Council.[1] Kaikoura District had belonged to the Nelson-Marlborough Regional Council but with the 1992 reform was transferred to the Canterbury Regional Council.[2]

        Central government had a go at having a combined Nelson-Marlborough Regional Council but that was for just a few years.   The Marlborough council has plenty to do with the port at Picton within its area, and the unsettling possibility of a new port being established further down the coast which only was abandoned when there were hefty earthquakes in the area.   (It being a waste of capital, infrastructure and investment in Picton was not the important point – I think it suited the trucking firms and self-drive tourists mostly.)

        • Graeme

          In the south the issues are around population shifts, being the rise of the former "hinterland" and the decline of the cities.  Dunedin and Invercargill are going backwards and Central Otago forwards rapidly.  Where resources should be going into Central and Northern Southland they are increasingly being drawn back into the cities to maintain services there.  Lumsden and Wanaka / Central Otago / Queenstown maternity being an illustration of this.

          But dramatic changes are happening with the population growth in Queenstown, Wanaka, Cromwell and Alexandra.  The regional airport is now Queenstown with 10 international flights a day to 3 cities, Dunedin has less than 1 to 1 city (Brisbane), and that's marginal.  Most of the passengers through Queenstown airport are going to / from somewhere outside Whakatipu, 40% from Wanaka / Central.  Southland, Waitaki and South Westland are significant contributors as well.  Consequently the shit has hit the fan and QLDC (75.1% shareholder in airport) has put the brakes on the airport's expansion plans as the natives were getting restless, and that's putting it diplomatically,

          Local and regional government structures tend to be historically based and the entrenched interests don't take kindly to reduced circumstances.  Change is inevitable but it could be an interesting ride.

          • McFlock

            The bullshit maternity "hub" decisions are based on the bullshit "debt" Southern DHB has accrued because of the bullshit funding model over the last couple of decades.

            The issue you allude to with QLDC is the permanent population vs the tourist population (and I mean "permanent" not "been there ten weeks and calls themselves 'local'" syndrome) is interesting and needs to be accounted for. But what's basis for elevating Lakes District Hospital into tertiary status?

            • Graeme

              But what's basis for elevating Lakes District Hospital into tertiary status?

              Probably none, but there's a very rapidly developing case for a tertiary hospital to serve the Central Otago / Queenstown region.  The time / distance thing becomes crippling, both for the patient, and the provider.

              We are currently immersed in a situation with a friend who has kidney failure coupled with onset of diabetes.  The lady is in her early 70's and has alway lived life at 100 mph.  She also is also caregiver to her 86 yo husband who suffered a very serious head injury about 20 years ago.  They married when she was 17.  His head injury means he cannot drive, and is pretty slow and unsteady at getting around.  

              She has been in hospital care for two months now, with an in and out bit at the start.  Over that time she's had two trips to Dunedin, one down by air and one by road, but both back by road, and one to Invercargill for a test that took 10 minutes, but resulted in a week's stay there until she was able to return to LDH.  In the meantime he has soldiered on as best he can, not knowing if he'll ever see his wife again.  He's had a few falls and the stress of the situation has knocked him back a lot, and worrying about him isn't helping her recovery either.

              While the care she has received is exemplary, along with the support he's getting from agencies, it's difficult to see how this is efficient, and humane, due to the distance and time involved.  Multiply this out over probably hundreds of patients in varying circumstances a month along with the socialised costs, and there's got to be a better way of doing it.

      • weka 13.2.2

        Keep regional councils and adjust them to account for geographical spread. Put the main office in Alex if needed. Decentralise the district councils. I'm sure the Upper Clutha would be happy to separate from Queenstown, because of the large difference in communities and needs that QLDC is ignoring.

        • Dukeofurl

          Alexandra is outside QLDC area

          Central Otago District Councils towns are Alexandra,Cromwell Roxburgh and Ranfurly

          The lakes part of QLDC is Hawea and Wanaka areas but  quickly following the Clutha gets into  Cromwell and Central Otago

        • Graeme

          Amalgamation, along with strong community boards should get the best of both.  Right now we need a strong hold on the rapidly changing regional issues, not more parochialism.

          The other side of QLDC "ignoring" Wanaka is that Wanaka residents are quite happy to come to Queenstown to use the airport, and contribute a considerable proportion of the considerable aircraft noise issues Whakatipu suffers, but get rather upset at the thought of their share of the noise being created in their own geography.

          Cromwell has become the defacto base for infrastructure servicing and is the logical place to base administrative services as well.  A regional hospital would fit there as well, unfortunately at the expense of Dunedin and Invercargill.

          • weka

            Tthe noise and other problems with over use of flying are pretty much all on mass tourism. Maybe criticise Upper Clutha and Cromwell people for making a living from tourism.

            As I understand the Wanaka/Queenstown issues, it's about voting population and representation. If smaller areas want to stay quieter and have a say in how their communities are run (and this applies to many place in NZ), then that way of structuring councils needs to change to be more democratic.

            • Graeme

              There's just as strong, maybe stronger, an argument that we are as much 'over localed' as over touristed.  Wanaka's 40% share of ZQN passengers is mostly business and locals travel, there's not much tourism there compared to Queenstown, and virtually none in Cromwell or Central.  On flights I'm on and in visits to the airport I'd put the passenger mix at around 50%, or maybe more, local or other than tourist.

              Our region has experienced massive population growth, both from those that are sleeping in their own bed, and those that are hiring someone else's bed for the short to medium term.  This growth is stretching the community and infrastructure and things are starting to give.

      • Ad 13.2.3

        Nice work there

        • Graeme

          Thank you.  It would be nice to see these issues getting wider discussion and leadership.  There's potential for things to get out of control on multiple fronts resulting in unfortunate outcomes.

          • Ad

            Stretch your legs and write a Standard post on QLDC/ORC election issues.

            Go on.

    • weka 13.3

      Laws is an idiot of epic proportions who somehow now seems to pop up occassionally on the right side of things. In this case, he's wrong. Ill health from woodfires at night in the winter is because of the long term exposure, over months. High country burnoffs last a day. There are really good reasons to not allow farmers to do them, but this isn't one of them (and if it was, farmers can burn when the wind is blowing the other way).

      Can't see how we could get rid of regional councils, they do different things than city and district councils and as bad as regional councils can be I'd hate to see them taken over by townies who have a different set of priorities. The big problem with regional councils is that not enough people vote, so farmers get to stack them with people aligned with their values.

      • Graeme 13.3.1

        Michael Laws is unfortunately only the current iteration of 'different' representative Dunstan has had on ORC, a past example was Jerry Eckoff and there will undoubtedly be many more.

        It's hard to say ORC is farmer dominated at a representative level, there's only 5 out of 12 with direct farming connections, most of the rest are technocrats closely related to the functions of the council, and half the councillors represent the Dunedin constituency, not many resource hungry farms there.

        However at a submission level rural interests loudly predominate, and pay for the best consultants.

        Agricultural burning is a fraught activity 'round these parts.  It doesn't matter how careful you are, how well approved you've got the burn (that can involve up to 6 agencies, virtually none of which seem to know what the others are doing) and how well you think you've picked 'the day', it can all turn to custard and you're hosting lots of people in big red trucks with flashing lights, angry ORCs, and if you're really lucky a couple of helicopters.

        • Robert Guyton

          Why are people lighting fires in arid Central Otago?

          • weka

            Because they don't know how to farm any other way (or are willfully ignorant on it).

          • Graeme

            Mostly it's disposing of development and land clearance waste.  Removing D. Fir shelter belts has produced a few good plumes this winter.  Our 'turnout' was disposing of the mess from gorse clearance and willow maintenance.  We've got about 10 km of deer fence we have to defend from DOC's willows, so there's an ongoing trimming program which generates a lot of slash.  And that's just one med – large property, the district's covered in large, elderly and often inappropriate trees.  Many of which are downright dangerous.  Also just had to deal with about a ha of very large, increasingly leaning silver poplars that were in their third (at least) phase of self coppice.  That generated a very large pile of firewood logs and a good sized pile of slash 

            • Robert Guyton

              Slash = lignin habitat and food for fungi, the generators of soil health and wealth; why rob them of the stuff they need and instead, put it up in the air as heat and gas?

              • Graeme

                Like I said, it's a fraught exercise.  The grief from the episode I described has resulted on a marked change in practices from the farm manager and owner concerned, granted we did close the airport for a little while.  The remains are now composting well.

            • Robert Guyton


              Following a "very stressful" night Elliot said he was relieved on Friday morning to find the massive blaze on his land between Kurow and Waimate, which began from a controlled burn, had largely "burnt itself out".

              About 50 firefighters, nine appliances and two helicopters were called at the height of the blaze on Thursday, and a two man team monitored the fire throughout the night."


        • weka

          I was thinking farmers dominating regional councils across the country (farmers and allies), but even with the ORC they seem to have a large influence on what the council does (eg water or dairying).

          Which is odd on both counts given more people live in cities now. We need more people voting and better support for progressive candidates.

          • Robert Guyton

            "We need more people voting and better support for progressive candidates."


            "None of the local candidate nominees were presenting their plans at high schools, where there would be a lot of first time voters, Laker said.

            "You only see signs around town and that is only a face and a name. It doesn't tell you what they are running for. "

            Well, Ms Laker, your high school admin don't allow local body candidates to speak to students, donchaknow! I tried and had to jump through hoops to get anywhere at all as far as talking to students was concerned.

            In any case, were you completely unaware of the efforts to have a climate emergency declared by some of your your regional councillors? It was on the front page of The Southland Times, twice! (The Southland Times is published on-line – you're on-line, right?)


            • weka

              "Well, Ms Laker, your high school admin don't allow local body candidates to speak to students, donchaknow!"

              What?!? Is that all high schools?

          • Graeme

            The influence is at the submission and submission support level. I manage a couple or small water schemes and get to observe and engage through a recent consent renewal.  It's quite a machine.

    • McFlock 13.4

      Lhaws is an arse.

      I'm not a huge fan of the ORC – even in Dunedin their treatment of public transport is abysmal. Dunno the pros and cons of splitting it or relocating head office, though.

    • weston 13.5

      I got no particular prob with councils trying to educate people concerning the desirability of burning well seasoned wood in their woodburners so long as they did so politely but beyond that they can go fuck themselves 

      • greywarshark 13.5.1

        Councils had to make changes according to a register of pollution days and how bad.   I think there were big changes and much better readings but still there will be obligations to keep to.

  12. greywarshark 14

    Why public systems are better then those in the private sector in the long run. Few can be trusted completely these days, and to the private sector you are just a body to insert the consumer virus into, that they hope will promote a fever to spend on their product.

  13. w00t lol 😝 … now redirects to Matt Blomfield’s site

  14. A 17

    Check out this dude!  8 years old and looking after everyone.  Awww.. ❥

    Side note: What are Stuff doing with spelling “mori” like that? Surely they can afford software to spell Maori correctly.

  15. marty mars 18

    Very interesting

    This column is part one of three on Ihumātao. This part traces the historical injustices behind Ihumātao. Part two outlines the legal progress and rising opposition against the Fletchers Residential development, the contradiction between justice for Māori and preserving Māori as an artefact, and how the Crown has divided mana whenua. Part three examines the political implications of Ihumātao.

    Ihumātao Dr Rawiri Taonui 1. Te Riri Pākehā | The White Man’s Anger

    • Dukeofurl 19.1

      Tell the Queen ?

       hehehe  too funny. The system means its the Queen who asks – on the advice of the existing PM.

    • The Al1en 19.2

      Won't happen, and Corbyn's an idiot if he truthfully believes that's going to happen.

      If Boris loses a no confidence vote, under the fixed parliament legislation, he faces a second chance ballot a couple of weeks later. Lose that, and it goes to a general election.

      The only way Corbyn has a legitimate chance of taking over is, after the first vote, he has the numbers to form a government, which is highly unlikely, even with the cons single, solitary majority.

      Whilst conservative members may not want a bar of a no deal brexit, even the most europhile of their numbers won't cross the floor and vote Corbyn's labour in. I can see them wanting a snap election to stop the pm, but never propping up the opposition and certain expulsion, deselection and self inflicted career ending suicide.


      “If the PM loses the motion of no-confidence, then under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act he would have another 14 days to win another vote.

      If he fails to secure the vote then a general election would be called on a date advised on by the PM.

      However, if another candidate can secure the confidence of the Commons then, under cabinet rules, Mr Johnson would be expected to resign and recommend the Queen appoints the other person.”

      • SPC 19.2.1

        It depends on the NI MP's backing a Labour led coalition that kept the UK in the customs union and single market and then went to a general election including a referendum on accepting the deal. If the referendum failed and the Tories won they would have a mandate for a no deal Brexit. Or not.  

  16. greywarshark 20    9 August 2019

    There's been studies that we've done in New Zealand and also some work done overseas, especially in the UK, that are coming together to show blackcurrants in New Zealand have some activity around helping exercise recovery and helping your body cope with the stresses of exercise."

    He said there were three ways recovery occurred – managing stresses, regulating the inflammatory pathways in the body so that tissue repair was promoted and the boosting of immunity.
    He said studies suggested New Zealand blackcurrants had higher levels of Polyphenol, which promoted this recovery. But he said more research was needed to scientifically validate the claim New Zealand blackcurrants were superior to other blackcurrants in this respect.

    Frozen currants were just as good as fresh ones, he said. The study received funding from the government.   2 Feb 2018   Major blackcurrant buyer Ribena cuts NZ contracts 

    This Japanese firm did not require our production in 2018 and so the growers had to hastily look what to do.    Why don't NZs make things themselves.   If we as a country supported our own growers, they would be sure of a certain level of sales, and then could develop an overseas interest for exporting to increase business.     And note that the Wikipedia item says that Suntory changed to artificial sweeteners as a result of a sugar tax in the UK.  But people wanting a natural juice that is sweetened may prefer some sugar, or honey, compared to the laboratory equivalents, and may be affected adversely by them.

    But note:    6/2/2018

    What makes the New Zealand blackcurrant better than others?

    It's the ultra-violet sunlight that really benefits the New Zealand blackcurrant-growing environment, said Ms Cushman.
    "That stimulates the berry fruit into producing very high concentrations of poly phenols, the bio-actives that give blackcurrants their physiological benefits.
    "We are also blessed to have good varieties that thrive in the New Zealand conditions," she said.

    Curranz launched the New Zealand blackcurrant product as a sports nutrition supplement, first in the UK, but now also in other countries, including New Zealand, Ms Cushman said.
    The company will be supplying High Performance New Zealand Olympic athletes for the next Olympic cycle.

    "It is a big breakthrough for the Kiwis because British athletes have been using the black currant supplements and winning and it was embarrassing that New Zealand sports people were missing out"

    We need to protect our own country's business.    The idea that we are big world players is quite wrong;   No matter how much we make or import we are always small.

  17. SHG 21

    It has been


    days without an incident of John Key Derangement Syndrome

    [lprent: And
    hours since the occurrence of Jacinda Ardern Derangement Syndrome (also known as ‘good ole misogynist itch’)

    If you want to make a point, then perhaps you could play with your teeny dick off my post…]

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

  18. SHG 22

    Amazing how moving a reply out from under the post that’s being replied to changes the context, geniuses.

    • greywarshark 22.1

      So there was a context.   Thanks for explaining something that was of no importance to anyone with even half a brain.

  19. Eco maori 23

    More rats rats being thrown at Eco Maori. 

  20. Eco maori 24

    Some Eco Maori music for the minute. 

  21. Eco maori 25

    Eco Maori has seen a story about the state of Indias Awa it is not good poverty and plastic waste is a big problem there .

    Please clean up your rivers to leave the taonga wai treasure water for your mokopuna grandchildren. Aotearoa has banned single use plastic bags it is a minor inconvenience but well worth it not seeing plastic bags blowing all around the country side the effects of the ban on single use plastic bags can already be seen we will eventually ban most plastics in Aotearoa 


    Plastic, poverty and paradox: experts head to the Ganges to track waste

    India’s most sacred river is also its most polluted, with plastic a major culprit. Now moves are afoot to monitor the flow of rubbish and assess its link to poverty

    Drop a plastic bottle into the Ganges and where does it end up? An all-female team of engineers, explorers and scientists is about to find out by undertaking the first expedition to measure plastic waste in one of the world’s most polluted waterways

    Following the Ganges upstream from where it empties in the Bay of Bengal to its source in the Himalayas, the National Geographic-backed expedition aims to better understand how plastic pollution travels from source to sea and provide solutions for reducing the amount that ends up in the world’s oceans.

    The 2,525 km-long Ganges is a river of extreme paradox: though worshipped by 1 billion Hindus and relied on as a water source for roughly 400 million people, it is contaminated with industrial runoff, untreated sewage and household waste. It is also one of 10 rivers responsible for 90% of the plastic that ends up at sea.

    The river is, therefore, a perfect starting point for measuring how plastic travels from land into rivers, and from rivers into the ocean, says National Geographic fellow and University of Georgia associate professor Jenna Jambeck, who is co-leading the expedition.

    “We know there’s plastic in these river environments and that the plastic is heading into the ocean,” says environmental engineer Jambeck, whose previous research found that 8 metric tons of plastic waste entering the sea every year. 

    Ka kite ano link below.

  22. Eco maori 26

    Kia Ora Newshub. 

    Wow a mean weather system is effecting the South Island lets hope that it doesn't make to big a Mess.

    I think the Idea that moving the cars to a different location in the Auckland region if its works and saves money run with it work smarter not harder is one of my philosophys the other is keep it simple it looks like this Idea fits both. 

    What about the suppression order against Eco Maori what a joke. 

    Cool teaching tamariki how to eat healthy foods at a kindergarten very good I have dropped sugar our of my diet and I have lost 10 kg and feel much better sugar should be banned too the gasoline tanks of our cars.

    Ka pai to the volunteers who have helped clean up the Awa river mess of a old dump down South Island. 

    Cool Idea including models with access needs in a fashion Show that should help lift there wairua. 

    A huge power cut in Britain that is not good at all lucky I harvest my power straight from Te Ra. 

    Thats heaps of Sharks in Australia they are beautiful creatures that need to be treasured and protected from over exploitation by greedy people. 

    Ka kite ano 

  23. Eco maori 27

    Kia Ora Te Ao Maori News. 

    It's sad that the Kua is closing after 15 years of teaching Te reo Maori  Eco Maori hopes that their is plans to fill the void of this Kua closure 

    The final 33 students finished today Eco Maori hopes that they can climb up to greater hights on their ladders of LIFE. 

    There are 2 sides to a story the Ihumatao issue with tangata being called racist. 

    It's awesome to see Tangata Whenua O Aotearoa in Australia tau toko te tangata at Ihumatao. 

    The Australian Tangata Whenua have been treated very badly by the Australian government. Ka kite ano 

  24. Eco maori 29

    Some Eco Maori Music for the Minute. 

  25. Eco maori 30

    Its not on having tamariki starving when Te Papatuanuku produce enough food and resources for all we have to change so food is not wasted 30% of food is wasted. 

    The rulers need to learn to share their lollipops sharing will be part of the changes needed to combat Human Caused Climate Change 


    World hunger on the rise as 820m at risk, UN report finds

    Eliminating hunger by 2030 is an immense challenge, say heads of UN agencies

    More than 820 million people worldwide are still going hungry, according to a UN report that says reaching the target of zero hunger by 2030 is “an immense challenge”.

    The number of people with not enough to eat has risen for the third year in a row as the population increases, after a decade when real progress was made. The underlying trend is stabilisation, when global agencies had hoped it would fall.

    Millions of children are not getting the nutrition they need. The UN says the pace of progress in halving child stunting and reducing the number of low birthweight babies is too slow, which jeopardises the chances of achieving another of the sustainable development goals.

    Nearly half of all child deaths in Africa stem from hunger, study shows


    Read more

    The report is from the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, the International Fund for Agricultural Development, the UN Children’s Fund (Unicef), the World Food Programme and the World Health Organization

    Ka kite ano link below. 


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  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    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 Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
    The Zero Carbon Bill is due back from select committee in two weeks, and will likely pass its final stages in November. So naturally, farmers are planning a hate-march against it. But they're not just demanding lower methane targets so they can keep on destroying the planet; they're also demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    1 week ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    1 week ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    1 week ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
    Fatal Contact: With the arrival of captain James Cook in October 1769, the islands of what would become New Zealand ceased to be the preserve of Polynesian navigators and settlers and became a part of both the world’s map and the world’s history.THE MAORI NATIONALIST assault upon the historical meaning ...
    1 week ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Transgender extremism, violence at work against feminist meeting at British Labour Party conference
    by Nick Rogers The debate around the meaning of sex and gender made an appearance at this year’s British Labour Party conference in Brighton. Women’s Place UK – an organisation that questions the demand that biological males who self-identify as woman should have access to women’s spaces, to all-women shortlists, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Rebelling in Wellington
    Yesterday I went down to Wellington to participate in the Extinction Rebellion protest. Its part of the latest global wave of XR actions, with actions happening all over the world. Some of those protests are massively disruptive: in Canada, XR is blocking major bridges, stopping people from getting to work. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘The Workshop’ – Report: Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform: A Guide to Strategies that ...
    The Workshop is a charitable trust for public good. The Workshop undertake research to find ways of communicating that will build support for the solutions that work to solve complex social and environmental problems. See their Report on Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform below. ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • Exclusive language
    What is language? We generally assume that it a facility unique to humans, allowing us to share what’s in and on our minds. We can tell of our plans, our past exploits, our knowledge. It also allows us to lie. And yet there are vast numbers of people we can’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    2 weeks ago
  • April 2018 – Submission to the NZ Govt Tax Working Group
    You can read our submission HERE ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • 2018 – Submission to the NZ Government Tax Working Group
    Read our submission here ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • Guardian: Poll shows DISASTER for Corbyn and the End of Times
    The Guardian - ever eager to forewarn of doom and disaster on the left - are leading with a new poll from Opinium, which puts the Conservatives 15% clear of Labour.Con 38% +2Lab 23% -1Lib Dem 15% -5Brexit 12% +1Green 4% +2This isn't good news, and it would be very ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How prostitution became the world’s most modern profession
    Being and Being Bought (Spinifex Press, 2013) by Kajsa Ekis Ekman  A synopsis and commentary of Chapters 1-2 by Daphna Whitmore Ekman, a Swedish journalist and critic, brings together a Marxist and feminist analysis of prostitution and surrogacy in this groundbreaking book She opens the discussion with a definition of ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago

  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    16 mins ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    2 hours ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    3 hours ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    4 hours ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    4 hours ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    6 hours ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    10 hours ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    21 hours ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    1 day ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    1 day ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    1 day ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    1 day ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    1 day ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    2 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    2 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    2 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    2 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    2 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    2 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    2 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    3 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    3 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    3 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    4 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    4 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    4 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    5 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
    6 days ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    7 days ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
    7 days ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
    7 days ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
    1 week ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
    1 week ago
  • Further details of Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit to New Zealand
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed further details on the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to New Zealand next month. Their Royal Highnesses will visit New Zealand from 17-23 November – their third joint visit to New Zealand and first in four years. They arrive in Auckland ...
    1 week ago
  • O’Connor in Thailand to push for RCEP deal
    Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth and Minister of Agriculture, Damien O’Connor, heads to Thailand today to attend the final Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Ministerial meeting, as negotiations enter their final stages. “The RCEP Agreement would anchor New Zealand in a regional agreement that covers 16 countries, ...
    1 week ago