Open mike 19/04/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 19th, 2022 - 96 comments
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Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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

Step up to the mike …

96 comments on “Open mike 19/04/2022 ”

  1. Jester 1

    And right on cue, here comes the sob stories telling us how nice a guy he was, and he was just mis-understood etc.

    "He was telling us about, you know, the mistakes there had been in life and he said he loved us when he left and that he wants to make changes."

    Well he certainly made changes….he increased his offending! Ramming a police car!

    Fatal Taranaki police shooting: Kaoss Price wanted to 'make changes' to troubled life – NZ Herald

    • Tony Veitch (not etc.) 1.1

      Isn't this so like right whingers – gloating over some poor bugger's misfortune!

      • Anker 1.1.1

        Tony V, the analysis needs to go deeper than left or right wing attitudes to people like Kaoss. Sorry if that sounds a bit pompous. But my point is there is very little that can be done for people once that are displyaing the behaviour Kaoss was.

        We need to go to the evidence to look for any interventions that could help very early on with these people

        • RosieLee 1.1.1.1

          You mean like not letting parents name their kids Kaoss in the first place?

        • Dennis Frank 1.1.1.2

          Yeah children need help early when adults try to victimise them. Unfortunately the road to hell is paved with good intentions. State intervention thus far seems to have been fraught with screw-ups of all sorts.

          We could be less jaundiced about such intervention processes if there was an audit that measured the outcomes & could vouch for the number of successful interventions. Haven't seen any evidence that the state is doing so..

      • McFlock 1.1.2

        Not misfortune, his killing. On consecutive days, too.

      • Jester 1.1.3

        Yes I agree, Those poor police officers, they were very misfortunate.

      • Foreign waka 1.1.4

        Are we excusing now violence because lets not forget that there are for the most part victims involved. Seems they are now collateral damage, left behind in their agony or completely ignored if no visible injury shows. But time and resources are spent on the perpetrator and their psychological make up . This is just bizarre. Right and wrong would be the term that needs to be looked at. The current approach is certainly not helping to build a safe and stable society.

    • Anker 1.2

      I feel more sorrow that Kaoss Price had the sort of life he did, than that he died, although I understand that friends are feeling a lot of sorrow.

      This young man's trajectory was sadly going to take him back to prison and it is amazing that he didn't kill someone already with his reckless driving.

      Was watching some interesting stuff about conduct disorder and early signs someone will end up sociopathic (although I am not saying this is the case with Kaoss as he had drug addiction, but likely).

      The signs that someone could become sociopathtic are there early. The problem is these youth become hard to work with, because they are often violent at a young age. And most counsellors wouldn't want to endanger themselves by working with people who put them at risk.

      I go back to the Dunedin study (that also posited that it was a combination of genes and environment that leads to violence). They found at 3 years old, that could predict who would be less or more likely to have good outcomes e.g not getting into trouble with the law. It came down to children who naturally had good self control. Young Kaoss didn't, eg using meth

      • Belladonna 1.2.1

        Not saying this is the case here – because I don't know and there have been no reports.

        But often these kids have fetal alcohol syndrome and/or pre-natal exposure to meth. Their brains are cross-wired from birth.

        Kids with poor self control as pre-schoolers can learn to overcome this – it takes patience and a loving environment with firm boundaries and consequences – from parents supported by psych professionals (where needed).

        Intervention needs to start with the pregnant mothers, and continue with pre-schoolers and their families.

        By the time they get to school (even at 5) it's pretty much too late. Schools are simply not set up to deal with them, and they'll fail right the way through the system.

        • Peter 1.2.1.1

          It costs $150k a year to keep someone in prison.

          When that is seen as necessary, and the building of more prisons and employing more staff in prisons is seen as the priority, rather than putting the investment into early school age, the mass of problems will continue to grow.

          • Belladonna 1.2.1.1.1

            Yeah. A big part of the problem is that you have to double pay now, to (potentially) avoid paying in the future.

            By the time kids like Kaoss are in their teens/early twenties – no intervention is going to work. They need to be in jail for the safety of the community – let alone (as in this case) themselves. So you still have the 150K cost.

            You then need to find the money to invest in the kids who would otherwise grow up to be Kaoss…. And that's not cheap, it's a complex issue, and it requires some form of state intervention (which is wildly unpopular these days).

            As commented above – we need effective reporting and auditing to see what's working (and what's not) over long periods. None of this is 'quick fix' stuff.

      • AB 1.2.2

        posited that it was a combination of genes and environment

        As the metaphor says, "nature loads the gun, nurture pulls the trigger". And I suspect none of us really knows how much of a loaded gun we are.

      • McFlock 1.2.3

        I often wonder what the differences were that made folks take such different paths, and have such different endings, when we all start out as the same sort of lump of cells.

        One of the key concepts in healthcare is "intervention point". The earlier the intervention, almost always there are better odds of an outcome. Not always, but almost. Folate in early pregnancy prevents neural tube defects that require a lifetime of assistance. Early identification of learning disorders help the child achieve more academically. So does free food in schools.

        So we've gone from the "first thousand days" from birth to from (and even before) conception.

        And it's not just a better outcome for the person, but for society, and it's cheaper, too.

        Death by police is an extreme intervention. I doubt it was unavoidable in the greater scheme of his life, even if the moment left little other option. Maybe we should fund earlier individual and systemic interventions.

        But then that would lead us to lowering socioeconomic inequity as well, and we can't have that. /sarc

        • Belladonna 1.2.3.1

          Absolutely agree about early intervention. But state intervention (KO) is becoming increasingly unpopular and undesirable.

          One of the big issues in child welfare, sadly, is still fetal alcohol syndrome (also meth babies). It has a profound (and often permanent) effect on the child. Not Mums having the odd drink before they know they're pregnant – but Mums drinking regularly and to excess throughout their pregnancy.

          I don't think it can be lack of knowledge – this has been hammered over the last 30 years – at least. It's got to be societal – drinking (and drugs) are normalized in their social group. You either have to 'fix' the whole social group (huge ask) – or remove the Mum from it (some form of supervision – which is pretty much anathema to the social welfare pundits).

          • pat 1.2.3.1.1

            We dont have the resources, time or patience to address the problem from both directions….like the housing bubble we are going to have to accept the consequences of decades of neglect.

          • McFlock 1.2.3.1.2

            But state intervention (KO) is becoming increasingly unpopular and undesirable.

            KO? Housing?

            It's very easy to focus on one cause of our societal clusterfuck – FAS is a massive problem, but so are legal/illegal drugs (often acting as self medication for other unrecognised problems), socioeconomic pressures, and generational alienation from society and government organisations (there's a world of difference between people who will call the cops for assistance, and people for whom police involvement will just make life worse).

            • Belladonna 1.2.3.1.2.1

              Sorry, my bad, for KO – read Oranga Tamariki (OT)

              There truly are families where the parents are incapable (for whatever reason, addiction, crime, etc.) of caring for their children – at even the most basic level. And where the wider family is just as dysfunctional. Kids don't have the decades it may require to get the parents back on the rails – even with massive support.

              If you want to make a difference, you need to target those Mums and little kids – and throw resources at that problem.

              FAS is the problem in that it's really hard (and sometimes impossible) to recover from. You can choose to stop self-medicating with drugs (illegal or legal) or to leave a gang, or to shift towns and sort your life out (all with a lot of help). But it's pretty hard to choose to fix your screwed up brain wiring.

              • McFlock

                If a particular set of circumstances is all one has ever known, I'm not so sure how much of a "choice" leaving it really is.

                But a lot of the prevention measures cross over multiple issues: sex education and free contraception lower surprise pregnancies where the mother finds out in the third trimester after six months of drinking and smoking, access to primary healthcare (including mental health) can lower the need for self-medication with improvised "remedies", and more available antenatal and postnatal care help identify and address other "nurture" triggers before requiring more extreme OT intervention. Hell, even better-resourced schools might have made a difference in this young man's life, long before his final encounter with the cops or even a court.

                OT have major problems in approach, equity, and understanding the basic difference between a population-level association and a predictor of individual outcomes. They seem to think that if someone ticks four out of five boxes, an uplift is automatically necessary. But also, they're well down the list of interventions after things have already started to go down the shorter, harder path.

                • Belladonna

                  I agree that the support matters. I really question the need for additional sex education and free contraception. Surprise and teen pregnancies are dropping in NZ – and I don't really think that lack of knowledge and/or choices about whether to become pregnant are the issue. The drinking and meth addiction throughout the pregnancy, are. And that's a social/cultural issue.

                  Choice is an interesting word. The point I was trying to make is that FAS is something imposed on the child as a consequence of the mother's actions – and isn't really recoverable from. It's a one-way street.

                  And, while I agree that OT are problematical – I don't see anyone else coming up with a solution where the parent/s are self-evidently incapable of meeting a reasonable level of care for the children (despite all the wrap around support in the world), and the wider family are also dysfunctional. It happens. Just look at the utterly shameful NZ statistics on child abuse and murder. What's the solution?

                  • McFlock

                    We've known solutions to the bulk of our problems for decades:

                    • non-punitive access to benefits
                    • a living wage as minimum wage
                    • better funded and resourced education
                    • better funded and resourced healthcare (especially primary healthcare)
                    • better funded and resourced early childhood support
                    • social welfare services that view themselves as assistants rather than saviours
                    • a criminal justice system more focused on rehabilitation and avoidance of recidivism

                    But all of that, and bridging the bubble of current late-but-expensive interventions while we boost funding to early-but-expanded interventions, requires things like taxing the rich and CGT.

                    It won't solve all problems, but the bulk of them would have a pretty big dent.

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    Bill Browder has a new book out – his first was a real humdinger.

    A graduate of Stanford Business School, he arrived in Moscow in the late 1990s, via a stint in London, determined to make his fortune.

    As his previous book, Red Notice, detailed, that’s exactly what he did. He set up Hermitage Capital Management, with the help of the Monaco-based billionaire Edmond Safra… It was a time of wild profiteering, as post-Soviet state assets were sold off on the cheap, and a venal oligarchy was created. Business feuds were regularly settled by bullets, and the life expectancy of bankers was radically shortened. When Putin came to power on New Year’s Eve 1999, promising to stamp out corruption, Browder was a relieved man.

    And he remained pro-Putin for the next three years, as the new Russian leader imposed state order on capitalist anarchy. In these years, Browder made a fortune, turning Hermitage into the largest foreign portfolio investor in Russia. His big innovation was shareholder activism, in which he targeted corrupt practices in some of the biggest companies, such as Gazprom, and by doing so raised their share price.

    https://www.theguardian.com/books/2022/apr/17/freezing-order-by-bill-browder-review-life-as-a-target-of-putin

    Born in the USA, he's now a British citizen. One of his grandads "was a radical and had lived in the Soviet Union for several years from 1927 and married Raisa Berkman, a Jewish Russian woman while living there."

    After his return to the United States in 1931, Earl Browder became the leader of the Communist Party USA from 1930 to 1945 and ran for U.S. president in 1936 and 1940. After World War II, Browder lost favor with Moscow and was expelled from the U.S. Communist Party.

    Earl and his wife Raisa had three children, all sons, and all three became mathematicians who headed the mathematics departments of top American universities including Bill Browder's father… Felix was a mathematics prodigy who had entered MIT at 16, acquired his bachelor's degree in two years, and by the age of 20 received a Ph.D. from Princeton. But during the McCarthy era, he could not find work because he was the son of the onetime head of the Communist Party USA.

    After a series of job rejections in the 1950s, he was championed by Eleanor Roosevelt, the former First Lady who was then chairman of the board of Brandeis University; she overrode the rest of the board who were afraid to hire him, and he gained a position at Brandeis. Felix went on to chair the mathematics department at the University of Chicago, and in 1999 became the president of the American Mathematical Society.

    What you see here is a family matrix that combines the successful rebel outsider archetype with the successful academic leader archetype, plus homelands in Russia & America. This mix created a successful establishment rebel.

    In the first book we learned why Bill supported Putin initially (anticorruption) and why Putin turned on him.

    On July 16, 2018, during a joint press conference with President Donald Trump in Helsinki, Finland, Russian president Vladimir Putin stated that Browder had funneled $400 million to Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign, an effort that he claimed involved members of the U.S. intelligence community who, Putin said, "accompanied and guided these transactions." The statement was made after Putin said he would allow special counsel Robert Mueller's team to come to Russia for their investigation—as long as there was a reciprocal arrangement for Russian intelligence to investigate in the U.S.

    The ploy didn't work. Putin's intended victim has won eight awards for moral leadership – I'll just include one:

    In 2019, Browder received the Lantos Human Rights Prize from the Lantos Foundation for his work as the "driving force behind the Magnitsky Sanctions, the most consequential enforcement mechanism of the modern human rights movement."

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Browder

    • Francesca 2.1

      Just to stress test your confirmation bias Dennis, there's a rather comprehensive archive written by an award winning financial fraud specialist , Lucy Komisar available.

      https://www.thekomisarscoop.com/category/thebrowderhoax/

      Here's a list of her other investigations

      https://inthesetimes.com/authors/lucy-komisar

      Also check out Andrei Nekrasov , liberal anti Putin film maker.

      His doco refuting Browder's story has been banned on Youtube , but is available for hire

      Look at the trailers at least , and check out the other commentary

      Or don't , if your principle interest is maintaining your own comfortable assumptions

      https://www.magnitskyact.com/

      • Dennis Frank 2.1.1

        smiley People who are impressed by published claims of contrary evidence flock together. Whoopee. Websites featuring compilations of counter-claims devoid of actual evidence, with the apparent intent of entertaining suckers. Why would anyone bother to even do that? They really think readers are morons??

        • RedLogix 2.1.1.1

          Yeah I scanned them as well. The consistent theme is that anything the poor misunderstood Russian authorities claim must be treated as the sober truth, while anything Western is inherently lies.

          Reality probably lies somewhere between. Due to the very nature of doing business in Russia it is almost certain Browder is not as pure as holy water – but to then leap to the idea that this means the entire Magnitsky story is a Russiaphobic hoax a remarkably selective reading of events indeed.

          • Dennis Frank 2.1.1.1.1

            Reality probably lies somewhere between.

            I suspect so. I'm just as inclined to believe a capitalist is telling the truth as anyone else here – but I read his book years ago before anyone started to claim he wasn't telling the truth. It rang true.

            The gist of the contrarists seems to be that Putin & Trump were plotting to get him, so he must be a baddie. Somehow this logic seems unconvincing…

          • Francesca 2.1.1.1.2

            If you'd bothered to look , you would have seen that Nekrasov has produced any number of docos that highlight how bad Russia is and how bad Putin is, and that has not changed.You have probably seen them " Inside Putin's Russia" for instance..not a very flattering portrayal.But in this instance, he discovered Browders story had some glaring narrative flaws.Instead of giving up (his intention had been to show up corrupt Russia once again) he pressed on , and he's been quite dogged as you would have seen from his archival website.At no point however does he give Putin or Russia a pass .

            You would also have seen that Lucy Komisar tackles financial fraud in many different countries, and has no form for whitewashing Russia.Her focus is on Browder's financial activity in Russia, not exonerating "poor misunderstood Russia "But so entrenched are you now in your bid to perceive Russia in an eternally cartoonish "evil" light , Browder must be one of the good guys, and everything he has to say must be the truth .Reverse contrarianism

  3. pat 3

    And now for todays good news…….

    .

    • Sabine 4.1

      I think i said about a year or so ago, that soon enough there will be men and others. Just like in the good old days of around 1650. Are women even human, and can everything be a woman, and if anything is a women, what is it even.

      Mind, they need to remove the 'woman' thing/soul from our bodies. After all our bodies need to be productive, eggs need to be harvested, milk needs to be pumped for sale, and future human beings for sale need to be 'baked' err incubated. And hey, after all we are but bodies.

      I can't wait for our progressive politicians here to start telling us how empowering all that is, that loss of identity and the rights that come with it, after all there is money to be made. So much money.

    • Dennis Frank 4.2

      Who builds public toilets? Councils. Local politicians plus hired employee managers & administrators. Notice how they cling to the establishment binary! Two cubicles.

      Now we know they are capable of creating diversity of options. Public toilets with provision of cubicles for disabled folk have been normal awhile. It's just a mental block then. Someone has to lobby them to create a separate user-defined cubicle!

      • weka 4.2.1

        Do you believe that women are entitled to female only toilets?

        (it's not just councils, lots of places are required to have toilets)

        • Dennis Frank 4.2.1.1

          Definitely! No valid reason to discriminate against women like the picture shows. I doubt any of the council scumbags will ever be able to produce even a semblance of one. Haven't seen any evidence of them trying it on…

          • weka 4.2.1.1.1

            👍👍

            The reasons given generally revolve around telling women that other people get to define our needs and wants.

        • Belladonna 4.2.1.2

          I believe there should be 2 options. Female only and Unisex.

          • Craig H 4.2.1.2.1

            I work somewhere which has done that where it can (some offices share the toilets with other offices on the same floor, so that's up to the landlord, others have them included within the office, so that's up to us).

            I've also worked somewhere where all the toilets were individual unisex cubicles, so I guess that was their implementation – non-gendered toilets effectively. I have also been to a few pubs and restaurants where they've done that, but my guess would be due to space constraints rather than any particular ideology – hard to have separate blocks when a place only has 2-3 toilets.

            • Sabine 4.2.1.2.1.1

              It is actually simply as

              One Unisex Loo – named with a sign on the entrace saying "Loo" with fully enclosed cubicles, well lit, with lots of cameras on the common space where the basins are located. Put a sign up there that says' smile you are on camera' – and hopefully it will prevent evil doing.

              But if you need a loo, irrespective of gender or genitals, there it is your glorious Unisex Toilet facilities for all.

              There is no need to waste precious and expensive real estate by providing men with their own space, they too can use the Unisex loos like everyone else.

              • Foreign waka

                I do not agree with that at all. Why would a mother be forced to bring up their child with the idea that gender is "fluid" and biology is just a nonsense subject best "rewritten" for a suitable curriculum. Its getting to a stage where women become afraid to voice an opposition to those "trendy" fantasies of a "better" tomorrow.

                • Sabine

                  i don't agree with this new faith either.

                  but if men can have a single sex toilet so should women (the born ones, not the worn ones). And if women can't have single sex toilets in order to be inclusive to men who identify as women or as non binary then so should men have no single sex toilets so as to be accomodating to women who identify as men or as non binary.

                  The stage were women have been scared into silence for the most has already passed. They are not saying a single thing, and the academics and liberals and lefties among them will happily point out that they are 'cis' aka not trans and 'she/her' lest someone get confused.

                  And we can pay thanks to our current overlords, their hand maidens and all other parties in government who helped bring these bright and shiny new times upon us who were born without a penis.

            • weka 4.2.1.2.1.2

              all the toilets were individual unisex cubicles,

              Each cubicle has its own hand basin, mirror, and space to get changed in?

              Cubicle as in floor to ceiling, no gaps including under the door?

              Single toilets each with its own door off a common area? Or cubicles inside at wider toilet area?

              The latter is not ok for many women, for safety, comfort and cultural reasons.

              Think about toilets at high school for instance, and what is going to work for girls or not.

              • Craig H

                Varies by needs of the office and space available in my experience as not everywhere is big enough to have showers and changing areas at all.

                Larger offices had cubicles on each floor which were toilets and handbasins with mirrors only (full height doors from floors to ceilings) with changing and shower areas separately provided by the bike storage area as they were the main reason people used the showers at work. Essentially the cubicles are small toilet rooms like you'd find in a house.

                Smaller offices I have worked in either had no shower/changing area or one shower/changing area as a separate unisex room.

                • weka

                  Larger offices had cubicles on each floor which were toilets and handbasins with mirrors only (full height doors from floors to ceilings)

                  Still not clear what you mean by cubicle. To me this is where you walk off a public area (eg a hallway) into a large room. In that large room there are multiple doors into the 'cubicles'. Walls and doors may go ceiling to floor, or not. But the shared area is through a generally closed door.

                  That kind of space is not ok for women to share with males.

                  (I wasn't talking about changing rooms, I was talking about having space in the toilet room, or shared room, to get changed in. Women need space to deal with changes of clothes where they go to the toilet).

                  • Craig H

                    By cubicle in my earlier posts, I meant a fully separate, fully enclosed room like toilets often are in a house, not a stall in a shared bathroom area (the only toilets I've ever been in with fully-enclosed stalls were in the Air NZ Koru Lounges although I'm sure there are other places that do that).

                    Whether they were big enough for room to change in was variable – some places had the space for that, some didn't, usually dependent on whether the office/shop had sufficient space for it. Whether there is a legal requirement for changing facilities depends on the type of work, so there's a lot of variation out there.

                    • weka

                      👍

                    • weka

                      most public women's toilets (including in private businesses like pubs) have enough space to get changed. You walk into a room with sinks and mirrors and the toilets are off that. Males shouldn't be going in there, and those spaces shouldn't be taken away from women and/or redesigned to solve other people's problems. Solve other people's problems without taking things from women.

  4. Dennis Frank 5

    Andrea Vance has produced an excellent in-depth examination of the prospects of conservation law reform. Stakeholders have generated a hefty consensus in favour of progress but there's considerable complexity. Here's one dimension of that:

    Māori values are often undermined and not currently reflected in law. The conservation estate – which is largely unmodified and uncompromised by environmental degradation – is also culturally vital. It is one of the few remaining avenues through which Māori can fulfil their obligations as kaitiaki (guardians) over their taonga (anything considered to be of value, or precious) and develop and sustain mātauranga [knowledge] Māori.

    But, since the creation of the conservation estate, the Crown has assumed management of the vast landscapes that make up the estate. Māori have struggled to have a voice. Many believe the exclusion of Māori from governance, thus frustrating their ability to act as kaitiaki, also breaches the Treaty of Waitangi.

    Easy to frame the situation as a progressive trend to honour the treaty vs the inertial effect of neocolonialism. The binary must be finessed via inclusion of conservatives – provided they concede that the present situation is untenable and take a constructive stance. Rightists take note! We need an intelligent consensus.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/128333326/the-laws-of-nature-why-old-legislation-is-standing-in-the-way-of-tackling-environmental-crisis

    • RedLogix 5.1

      A repeat of the Three Waters debacle – a necessary legislative and functional update being used as cover for yet another implementation of He Puapua policy.

      • Alan 5.1.1

        Political suicide for Labour – NZers do not appreciate constitutional change by stealth

        • RedLogix 5.1.1.1

          Read the report.

          A lot of ambiguous language that avoids making direct contestable claims, but consistently demands a fundamental (that word is used repeatedly) change to the current system. Wherever possible is discounts or denigrates conservation efforts to date and insists that putting iwi interests ahead of all other considerations is the only way forward.

          Of course the authors are smart enough not to say it outright, but the entire document is a plain as daylight effort to create the necessary framework to transfer effective control of the DoC estate to the iwi chiefs.

          • Belladonna 5.1.1.1.1

            And, there are increasing numbers of co-governance situations coming to light – where conservation is apparently at direct odds with iwi ambitions for their people.

            Here is Tuhoe saying that, in the management of Lake Waikaremoana and the associated Te Urewera National Park, the needs of their iwi come first, and conservation is second.

            TUT sees reconnecting its people to their homeland as by far the most important goal and takes more of an holistic approach to conservation.

            https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/300535889/pest-control-efforts-in-te-urewera-have-changed–some-conservationists-worry-about-the-fate-of-native-species

            This differing view of priorities means that they don't mesh well with DoC – who have $$$ to spend on Te Urewera maintenance but TUT don't recognize this as a priority (yes, much of the work has now been done, after substantial media, public and political pressure)

            If DOC felt “uncomfortable” with TUT’s judgment, Luke wrote, it should remove the structure in question altogether.

            “That seems to us the only real way to remove that pressure. I understand that is not a preferred DOC view, and thus a further impasse.”

            "He said opening Te Urewera to the public was “way down the list of priorities” for Tūhoe, as it brought no benefit to the iwi."

            https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/127779621/how-huts-and-bridges-in-te-urewera-fell-into-a-state-of-disrepair

            There is apparently no sanction or redress when the iwi-led partner chooses not to engage – they can simply hamstring the process — seemingly forever. (e.g. conservation plans in limbo, maintenance plans not signed off – and no response to repeated attempts to engage with them over these issues)

            All of this is of considerably concern, when the Government is rolling out increased co-governance plans across a wide range of national agencies.

            We are entitled to ask, what happens when either one group, or the relationship is dysfunctional (and, sooner or later it will happen)?

            We have legislative redress for Government agencies (the Minister can dismiss them), local government (bounced out at the next election – or replaced by MoLG with commissioners). We *assume* that this will be the case for 3 Waters representatives (though, based on the current situation with the council controlled organizations in Auckland – I'm less than trusting over this).

            But, what about if/when iwi co-governance organizations are dysfunctional?
            We've seen little evidence of an open and transparent process in appointment and turnover. And some evidence of very dubious people being appointed (resulting in outcry, from Maori as well as the rest of the population)

            https://www.teaomaori.news/calls-roger-pikia-stand-down-whilst-sfo-investigates

            Yes. Bad/incompetent/greedy people get appointed to public management in general. But the point is, that there are mechanisms to remove them.

            • Descendant Of Smith 5.1.1.1.1.1

              Ah so the reverse of the current situation where councils are dysfunctional in their consultation – like consultation with their own appointed Maori advisor, appointed through their own processes then somehow deluding themselves that that person speaks for all Maori affected (even when they don't come from that iwi or hapu group) and that their consultation is done. You know ticking the box.

              Or spending months have the paid council staff produce a 200 page report then giving to their voluntary Maori advisors and expecting a response back in a couple of weeks – or in some cases sign off at the meeting.

              Puao Te Ata Tu many years ago noted this folly – the need to treat Maori as a partner and pay for the time and effort to have consultation occur.

              But then councils produce as part of their ten year plan anything up to 600 items they want consultation on with iwi and hapu groups – mainly unpaid time and often extraordinarily complex. This to be fitted an amongst heath, employment, welfare, police, roading, rail, etc consultation.

              What is clear is that consultation is not the way to go. It is an impossible demand on ordinary peoples time.

              It is why partnership is the way to go. Where before lengthy documents are produced both parties can talk about what they bring to the table not one party e.g. the larger council government one asking Maori for what they the council want and asking for sign off on already decided plans.

              Tuhoe have been clear for many years that tourism brings them little benefit. I'm not sure how that is not understood. Maori want many of the same things that we all want but clearly have different views on how to get there.

              If we are doing business overseas eg China, Japan, Vanuatu, USA, etc we don't go in thinking that we don't have to change and adapt to their way of operating. If we want to do business then we adapt or don't get anywhere.

              • Belladonna

                So the current 'consultative' model is dysfunctional. New co-governance model is also dysfunctional (in many instances). Not seeing how change is improving anything here….

                Sorry, from the environmental perspective – we need to make hard choices. Do we want to have some of our native species survive, or not…..
                Because 'predator free NZ' by 2050 isn't compatible with an ongoing possum ‘livelihood’ fur trapping industry (prominent in the Tuhoe plan)
                https://issuu.com/teurutaumatua/docs/tuhoe_te_uru_taumatua_annual_plan_issuu

                • Descendant Of Smith

                  It isn't prominent. That is your bias and slant. It is pretty clear they are saying they will continue to cull possums but will also work out whether there is value and opportunity to still have some co-exist. The answer may be yes or no.

                  • RedLogix

                    The simple fact is that nothing about the pioneering co-governance model with Tuhoe can be held up as a shining example. Fact is once they had a grip on a little bit of power they have used it for their own benefit and not that of all New Zealanders. In Kuger's own words:

                    "He said opening Te Urewera to the public was “way down the list of priorities” for Tūhoe, as it brought no benefit to the iwi."

                    A clear case of iwi before kiwi if there ever was.

                  • Belladonna

                    I don't think you can read this article from a conservation perspective and not be concerned.

                    It seems really clear that since 2014, conservation of native species and pest control have taken a nose-dive in Te Urewa.

                    https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/300535889/pest-control-efforts-in-te-urewera-have-changed–some-conservationists-worry-about-the-fate-of-native-species

                    I'm sorry – but I don't regard this as 'bias' or 'slant'.

                    • Descendant Of Smith

                      Apparently so has the funding.

                      https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/2018829060/doc-looking-at-need-for-more-te-urewera-funding

                      Te Urewera Board Chair Tāmati Kruger said funding needs to be boosted back to “at least” the level it was before the Tūhoe settlement when the area used to be a national park.

                      Tūhoe receives about $2.5 million a year from the Crown for resources. When it was a national park Kruger said funding to DOC was at least $7 million.

                    • Descendant Of Smith

                      And DOC reduced the number of scientists as well.

                      "Our settlement entails a working relationship with DoC at an operational and management level and the loss of almost $800,000 from their budget and the loss of staff is of great concern to us," Mr Kruger said.

                      A significant number of jobs lost in Te Urewera were scientists who monitored health of flora and fauna and informed policy, he said.

                      "How will the department maintain a service that will diminish with the loss of this money and staff? That is what we are interested in."

                      This is the worry about health as well. The Crown sets up an entity to help with Maori health then reduces the funding and says it is all up to you now.

                    • RedLogix

                      @DoS

                      The $7m figure from Kruger sounds like maybe the whole spend on the East Coast Conservancy.

                      From experience I know how complex DoC operations are and it is not always easy to determine what has been spent on what, but if Te Urewera itself was indeed ever getting a number like that I would be very surprised.

                  • Belladonna

                    From your quoted article

                    Kiri Allan told Checkpoint she has not heard of funding being that much, and is investigating

                    So, the 7Mill seems highly unlikely.

                    In addition, DoC have repeatedly said that they need to have signoff on a management plan, and that the one provided by TUT didn't actually include any funding for maintenance work or capital expenditure – before they can release funds (it's a government requirement – don't shoot the messenger) – and Tuhoe have repeatedly failed to engage with them [it's clearly a difference in priorities – DoC want to deal with infrastructure and pest control – Tuhoe want to funding to go to iwi re-engagement with the land]

                    https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/127779621/how-huts-and-bridges-in-te-urewera-fell-into-a-state-of-disrepair

                    Your other quote comes from an article from 2013 – where the whole of DoC reduced staff. It doesn't seem directly relevant to Te Urewera. Other areas in NZ under DoC management aren't facing similar conservation issues.

                    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/rotorua-daily-post/news/tuhoe-see-risk-to-treaty-deal-in-cuts/YDNT66RY3QAGXTJLBEPRV4EHSA/

                    • Descendant Of Smith

                      This has been going on for a long time and is quite complex and the difficulty in taking any bit in isolation is that it doesn't paint the overall picture.

                      Maori well know they can be set up to fail and then people can say I told you so. There is a pattern where agencies hand over something, often to a group much smaller and less resourced organisation than themselves then systematically remove what they were knowing full well that there isn't the capacity there to manage it and perform. Alternatively you hand it over and then control the KPI's that are measured against even though you well know that the priorities for the group may be different e.g. you still impose your performance expectations not those of the group you have handed over to.

                      This is in part what we are seeing here and what causes some of the dysfunction and trust.

                      2013 when DOC withdrew it's staff just happens to be the year settlement was initially agreed – it isn't just a co-incidence.

                      Both sides are on a journey and I see no reason to be pessimistic – there is a longer time frame to consider.

                      "Now, we have a much-improved relationship with the Department of Conservation where we’re quite gentle with each other — well, on Mondays and Thursdays. And they’ve asked us to help the machine understand that this is a new world, that indeed a national park has disappeared, and there is this place that is of itself.

                      It cannot be owned by anyone else, and the machine is having difficulty understanding what that is. And the machine does not want to give resources to something that it doesn’t own and something that it doesn’t control.

                      So that’s where we are at, at this operational level, and the Department of Conservation accepts that it has no governance role, it has no management role, it is a contributor to operations, but its contribution is half of what Tūhoe contributes as well.

                      So, it’s not a significant contribution, but nevertheless it’s a contribution so that my friend Barry can bring all of his friends to Te Urewera. Because without the Crown contribution, you’ll have to ask my permission — because then [it will] revert to private land, wouldn’t it?

                      Oh, I kind of think it already is in one way — not that it’s not public land.

                      But the money that the Crown gives to help operate things in Te Urewera is how all non-Tūhoe people access Te Urewera. And if tomorrow the Crown said: “Sorry, we can’t afford it, we’re spending all our money on Auckland again”, then all you good folk will have to do something else — I can’t imagine what that will be — in order to access Te Urewera."

                      https://e-tangata.co.nz/identity/tamati-kruger-we-are-not-who-we-should-be-as-tuhoe-people/

                      Partnership where each is bring something to the table, working out common goals and understanding where goals are different instead of imposing the requirements on the other is really in it's infancy.

                      If DOC was coming to the table they'd be saying "we bring less scientists and less funding than we were spending previously." Whether it is 7 million or something different is not important as the principle. That ultimately is what DOC is bringing. It has never seemed to me to be a good starting point for partnership but is consistent with what I've seen elsewhere.

                      This is why I worry about health – that the state reduces it services out of proportion to whatever is handed over. We need to understand that this is normal practice – the disability community knows this well from deinstitutionalisation where the cost of running institutions was in no way compensated for by sufficient community funding and support in many rural communities in particular.

                      Going back to the original point while we have this expectation that Maori interests are subordinate to our own then we will have difficulty.

                    • RedLogix

                      I had a very close friend who was the East Coast Conservancy Senior Scientist for many years prior to his passing in 2014. He pioneered much of the original groundwork for 2013 agreement and I had many in depth conversations with him on just this topic.

                      In short I think he would be very saddened at the outcomes here – there is no question that public access to Te Urewera is being run down – especially for the hunting community. Public huts are becoming dilapidated, or mysteriously burn down and don't get replaced, while numerous 'private shacks' get built wherever the locals want them. Tuhoe may not own the park in any strict legal sense, but they now have effective control on the ground over how it is used – as a giant private hunting and possum harvesting patch for the locals and their mates.

                      As for the removal of the conservancy scientists – I suspect this has happened nationwide. As time went by DoC found it increasingly difficult to retain high caliber staff in regional locations and have moved most of these roles back to Wellington.

              • Foreign waka

                But the taxpayer has and still is paying huge amounts of money. Where is it all gone?

                What needs to be cleared up is the unspoken premise here: will the property right of the individual be abolished?

                To bring in such huge changes under a cloak-and-dagger policy will cost labor their next election.
                Many say that our PM is already looking at a position at the UN or similar and wont be part of the next election. If so leaving behind some serious damage.

                • Anne

                  Many say that our PM is already looking at a position at the UN or similar and wont be part of the next election. If so leaving behind some serious damage.

                  Many say lots of things about the PM and most of it is pig-swill. Just another falsehood to add to the never ending deluge of 'falsehoods' in an attempt to slander, insult, demean and defame her.

                  I mean, she is acutely intelligent, strong in character, exceedingly competent and amazingly across all of the portfolios, so how else are the cowardly right-wing assholes going to discredit her?

          • swordfish 5.1.1.1.2

            .

            Concerns from the anonymous Conservation Board member who leaked the controversial set of draft recommendations from the Options Development Group : [May 2021]

            (1) Podcast The Wild Podcast: Special Episode – Leaked Options Development Group Draft Recommendations on Apple Podcasts

            (2) Transcript of Podcast Options Development Group — The Wild Podcast

            • pat 5.1.1.1.2.1

              Disturbing (still)

            • RedLogix 5.1.1.1.2.2

              Word I have been told is that if as a non-Maori hunter you are silly enough to make too much noise about your slow exclusion from the backcountry – you are likely to get a visit from the cops regarding your gun license.

              I have never been interested in hunting myself, but as a tramper of many decades I have spent many an interesting night sharing a hut with them and know a few well. Much disquiet in that community.

    • alwyn 5.2

      "Māori values are often undermined and not currently reflected in law"

      Yes, we saw that 7 or 8 years ago when Ngapuhi leader Sonny Tau was charged with breaking Pakeha law when he was simply following Maori custom in eating kereru.

      At the time there were questions raised as to whether the European law, which had been around for a century, breached the Treaty of Waitangi.

      Mind you, at the time he said "I also wish to say this was a mistake, which I deeply regret". I suspect the only mistake he thought he had made was to get caught.

      https://www.nzherald.co.nz/kahu/ngapuhi-leader-admits-smuggling-pigeon/SQ6DIA3BQZSR7YZOFAZO3ZUZMU/

      • Dennis Frank 5.2.1

        smiley Perhaps in his favour we could acknowledge that there's no evidence he ever sold the shrunken heads of slaves to British traders, so he's only partly traditionalist…

      • Populuxe1 5.2.2

        I guess we'll just ignore that it was Ngāi Tahu rohe and they had a rahui on kererū then.

        • Incognito 5.2.2.1

          If you do the crime, you pay the fine. I’d suggest you stick to KFC unless you’re willing to serve three months' community detention and 100 hours community work and be fined $24,500. BTW, he pleaded guilty.

          • alwyn 5.2.2.1.1

            "BTW, he pleaded guilty."

            B****n T****t, who murdered 51 people in Christchurch Mosques also pleaded guilty to those crimes.

            Does it somehow diminish the crime if you do, as Tau did, plead guilty?

            And no. I am not equating the crimes. I am only commenting on the idea that pleading guilty somehow diminishes the offence.

            • Incognito 5.2.2.1.1.1

              You dredged up an irrelevant incident and alleged that a Māori breached Pākehā law deliberately because he was simply following Māori custom. [my emphasis] In other words, he couldn’t give a shit and gave the finger and this is typical of what has been and still is happening now in NZ.

              If this were truly the case then he would not have pleaded guilty and not have shown remorse.

              Your comment is deeply divisive and problematic and not only in and for this discussion thread.

              It is utterly absurd to suggest that guilty plea diminished the crime committed and admitted and the suggestion is entirely your fabrication. The obvious weakness of your strawman argument is that you dredged up the worst case in NZ history to score your ‘point’, an example that actually doesn’t even support your bizarre notion at all.

              I think you have a sick mind; you know that something was very wrong with your comment but either you didn’t understand how heinous it was or you did know this and posted it anyway with some lame pre-emptive ‘excuse’ that you were not equating the two crimes but simply putting them side-by-side as if it was merely some kind of hypothetical exercise aka sick mind-game of yours.

              Another commenter and previous moderator has just suggested I misused moderation today. I cannot wait to ‘misuse’ it on you next time when (not if) you post similarly vile and divisive BS. You have been warned.

              • RedLogix

                In my fairly basic legal understanding pleading guilty does not reduce the culpability (in other words it does not diminish the charge, it will not reduce murder to manslaughter for example) – but can be taken into account when sentencing.

                Alwyn has used an unnecessarily inflammatory example to make his point, but in principle I think he is correct.

                • Incognito

                  Except that it never was [about] a legal argument and there never was any suggestion of the guilty plea amounting to a diminishment or attempted diminishment of the crime(s) committed and admitted in Court. In fact, by comparing it with the worst example in NZ history the guilty plea was made to look worse. I believe this was intentional and I made my views clear for this reason.

          • Populuxe1 5.2.2.1.2

            My point was that he, as Ngāpuhi was not on his iwi rohe. Arguments that his actions can be justified by tikanga not being subject to Pākehā law ignore that the specific legal condition he broke was one that exists in cooperation between the Crown and Ngāi Tahu to protect the customary rohe of Ngāi Tahu. As far as I'm aware, no permission was given by Te Runanga o Ngāi Tahu.

        • Descendant Of Smith 5.2.2.2

          I guess we'll ignore all the people who didn't do as he did which were far, far greater in number.

          If we used the example of pakeha individual offending to cast aspersions on all pakeha we would be laughed at. Fuck you are pathetic and racist.

          • Populuxe1 5.2.2.2.1

            Eh? I literally have no idea how you got anything like that from what I said.
            Someone from one iwi coming into the rohe of another iwi and violating that iwi's rahui when that rahui is also enforced by the Crown is not above tikanga or the law. Not sure how you get "racist" from that.

            • Descendant Of Smith 5.2.2.2.1.1

              It was a response to Alwyn's comment. The reply function shoved it down here.

  5. Poission 6

    Corn futures raise under demand for lower fuel prices and the canard of Biofuel mandates.

    https://twitter.com/Schuldensuehner/status/1516101573423902728?cxt=HHwWkMC99aWWo4oqAAAA

    Biofuels at the cost of food cause significant food shortages,they are also inefficient,cause air pollution in warmer weather,and require fossil fuels for conversion production and land use changes.

    https://twitter.com/yaneerbaryam/status/1514347227002679297

    NZ is to introduce a biofuel mandate from 2023,the costs have increased by 25% in the feed stock alone without the capital expense of blended fuels.There is no benefits if the true costs are identified,and fueling inflation locally, and food costs internationally increase instability.

    https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/powering-nz%E2%80%99s-future-biofuels

    • tsmithfield 6.1

      We ain't seen nothing yet.

      Don't think anything agricultural will be getting cheaper any time soon.

      • Cricklewood 6.1.1

        Very likely going to end up in widespread civil unrest through the developing world as people find it harder and harder to feed themselves. Highly populated cities and countries that rely on imported staples to feed the servant class will feel the brunt first.

        Not to mention famine taking hold in parts of the third world as wealthier countries hoover up the availble supplies of wheat etc.

      • Poission 6.1.2

        Read the links in Yaneers thread.

        Instability is already underway in Sri Lanka, Pakistan,Tunisia,and Libya.Agriculture products here are not expensive if you purchase in season.

        • tsmithfield 6.1.2.1

          I think the price increase in NZ will come because of an increased demand for our exports due to lack of food elsewhere.

          Farmers are going to expect to get the same prices locally as what they can get from exports if they are going to supply us here. So, food will get expensive here as well.

          • Poission 6.1.2.1.1

            Exports are negated by currency flows and the high cost of freight (refrigerated) somewhat (but not all) Then again without agriculture exports we would not be able to balance the budget and we would have few overseas funds.

          • pat 6.1.2.1.2

            A lot of our prices havnt increased yet (or at least not to the extent they will) because existing supply agreements are still in force….next seasons crops will be a different story

    • alwyn 6.2

      It's fine for the pollies. The ones in Cabinet get, usually electric, cars provided by the taxpayer. The others are paid enough to be able to afford newish cars themselves.

      To bad if you live in the poorer areas of town and can only afford old cars though. The ethanol they are mandating in the fuel can ruin old style engines apparently. How sad. The Cabinet members won't worry though as the ones who will suffer aren't their kind of people.

  6. Stephen D 7

    Pablo from Kiwipolitico on neoliberalism. Makes a lot of sense to me.

    http://www.kiwipolitico.com/2022/04/a-word-on-post-neoliberalism/

    ”What emerged instead was societies increasingly marked by survivalist alienation rooted in feral capitalism tied to authoritarian-minded (or simply authoritarian) neo-populist politics that pay lip service to but do not provide for the common good–and which do not adhere to the original neoliberal concept in theory or in practice. Survivalist alienation is (however inadvertently) encouraged and compounded by a number of pre- and post-modern identifications and beliefs, including racism, xenophobia, homophobia and social media enabled conspiracy theories regarding the nature of governance and the proper (“traditional” versus non-traditional) social order. This produces what might be called social atomisation, a pathology whereby individuals retreat from horizontal solidarity networks and organisations (like unions and volunteer service and community agencies) in order to improve their material, political and/or cultural lot at the expense of the collective interest. As two sides of neoliberal society, survivalist alienation and social atomisation go hand-in-hand because one is the product of the other.”

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    A few weeks ago, I blogged about the (then) upcoming ETS auction, raising the prospect of it failing, leaving the government with a messy budget hole. The auction was today, and indeed, it failed. In fact, it was such a failure that no-one even bothered to bid. Its easy to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The Return of Jacinda.
    Oh, take me, take me, take meTo the dreamer's ballI'll be right on time and I'll dress so fineYou're gonna love me when you see meI won't have to worryTake me, take mePromise not to wake me'Til it's morningIt's all been trueEarly morning yesterday, well before dawn, doom-scrolling.Not intentionally, that’s ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • How good is the interim NW busway?
    This is a guest post by Pshem Kowalczyk, a long-time follower of the blog. With great fanfare, just over six months ago (on 12 November 2023), AT launched its interim busway for the NorthWest region, with the new WX express service at the heart of the changes. I live ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    6 days ago
  • Consumer confidence collapses after Budget, in contrast with rest of world
    The first widespread survey of consumers and voters since the Budget on May 30 shows a collapse in confidence. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The belt-tightening and tax-cutting Budget delivered on May 30 has not delivered the boost to confidence in the economy the National-ACT-NZ First Government might have ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The end for the Air Force 757s
    The Air Force 757 that broke down with the Prime Minister on board in Port Moresby on Sunday is considered so unreliable that it carries a substantial stock of spare parts when it travels overseas. And the plane also carries an Air Force maintenance team on board ready to make ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • At a glance – Was 1934 the hottest year on record?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    6 days ago
  • It's not New Zealand they've never heard of, it's him
    Sometimes you’ll just be so dog-tired, you can only keep yourself awake with a short stab of self-inflicted pain.A quick bite of the lip, for instance.Maybe a slight bite on the tongue or a dig of the nails.But what if you’re needing something a bit more painful?The solution is as ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” II
    Last month I blogged about the Ministry of Justice's Open Government Partnership commitment to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation", and how their existing efforts did not give much reason for confidence. As part of that, I mentioned that I had asked the Ministry for its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why the Biden “peace plan” for Gaza is doomed
    After months and months of blocking every attempt by the UN and everyone else to achieve a Gaza ceasefire, US President Joe Biden is now marketing his own three-stage “peace plan” to end the conflict. Like every other contribution by the US since October 7, the Biden initiative is hobbled ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    7 days ago
  • Raised crossings: hearing the voice of vulnerable pedestrians
    This is a guest post by Vivian Naylor, who is the Barrier Free Advisor and Educator at CCS Disability Action, Northern Region, the largest disability support and advocacy organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand. She also advises on AT’s Public Transport and Capital Projects Accessibility Groups. Vivian has been advocating and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    7 days ago
  • Leaving on a Jet Plane
    So kiss me and smile for meTell me that you'll wait for meHold me like you'll never let me go'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet planeDon't know when I'll be back againOh babe, I hate to go“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Tuesday, June 18
    The election promises of ‘better economic management’ are now ringing hollow, as NZ appears to be falling into a deeper recession, while other economies are turning the corner. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The economy and the housing market are slumping back into a deep recession this winter, contrasting ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Scrutiny week off to rocky start
    Parliament’s new “Scrutiny” process, which is supposed to allow Select Committees to interrogate Ministers and officials in much more depth, has got off to a rocky start. Yesterday was the first day of “Scrutiny Week” which is supposed to see the Government grilled on how it spends taxpayers’ money and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • The choice could not be more stark’: How Trump and Biden compare on climate change
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Barbara Grady Illustration by Samantha Harrington. Photo credits: Justin Lane-Pool/Getty Images, Win McNamee/Getty Images, European Space Agency. In an empty wind-swept field in Richmond, California, next to the county landfill, a company called RavenSr has plotted out land and won ...
    1 week ago
  • Differentiating between democracy and republic
    Although NZ readers may not be that interested in the subject and in lieu of US Fathers Day missives (not celebrated in NZ), I thought I would lay out some brief thoughts on a political subject being debated in the … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 17
    TL;DR: Chris Bishop talks up the use of value capture, congestion charging, PPPs, water meters, tolling and rebating GST on building materials to councils to ramp up infrastructure investment in the absence of the Government simply borrowing more to provide the capital.Meanwhile, Christopher Luxon wants to double the number of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • You do have the power to change things
    When I was invited to come aboard and help with Greater Auckland a few months ago (thanks to Patrick!), it was suggested it might be a good idea to write some sort of autobiographical post by way of an introduction. This post isn’t quite that – although I’m sure I’lll ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Turning Away – Who Cares If We Don't?
    On the turning awayFrom the pale and downtroddenAnd the words they say which we won't understandDon't accept that, what's happeningIs just a case of other's sufferingOr you'll find that you're joining inThe turning awayToday’s guest kōrero is from Author Catherine Lea. So without further ado, over to Catherine…I’m so honoured ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
    Hi,Tickled was one of the craziest things that ever happened to me (and I feel like a lot of crazy things have happened to me).So ahead of the Webworm popup and Tickled screening in New Zealand on July 13, I thought I’d write about how we made that film and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
    Hi,I’m doing a Webworm merch popup followed by a Tickled screening in Auckland, New Zealand on July 13th — and I’d love you to come. I got the urge to do this while writing this Webworm piece breaking down how we made Tickled, and talking to all the people who ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
    One simple statistic said it all: China Premier Li Qiang asked Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell what percentage of the company’s overall sales were made in China. “Thirty per cent,” said Hurrell. In other words, New Zealand’s largest company is more or less dependent on the Chinese market. But Hurrell is ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
    One occasionally runs into the question of what J.R.R. Tolkien would have thought of George R.R. Martin. For years, I had a go-to online answer: we could use a stand-in. Tolkien’s thoughts on E.R. Eddison – that he appreciated the invented world, but thought the invented names were silly, and ...
    1 week ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
    A listing of 35 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 9, 2024 thru Sat, June 15, 2024. Story of the week A glance at this week's inventory of what experts tell us is extreme weather mayhem juiced by ...
    1 week ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
    After a busy week it’s a good day to relax. Clear blues skies here in Tamaki Makaurau, very peaceful but for my dogs sleeping heavily. In the absence of a full newsletter I thought I’d send out a brief update and share a couple of posts that popped up in ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The Book of Henry
    Now in the land of Angus beef and the mighty ABsWhere the steaks were juicy and the rivers did run foulIt would often be said,This meal is terrible,andNo, for real this is legit the worst thing I've ever eatenBut this was an thing said only to others at the table,not ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    1 week ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    2 weeks ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 weeks ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 weeks ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashIt’s that new day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for our chat about the week’s news with special guests:5.00 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    2 weeks ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago

  • Transformative investment in cancer treatments and more new medicines
    The coalition Government is delivering up to 26 cancer treatments as part of an overall package of up to 54 more new medicines, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti and Associate Health Minister David Seymour announced today. “Pharmac estimates that around 175,000 people will benefit from the additional treatments in just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • More support for drought-affected communities
    The coalition Government is providing more financial support to drought-stricken farmers and growers in many parts of the country to help with essential living costs. “Rural Assistance Payments have been made available in 38 districts affected by dry conditions to help eligible farmers and growers whose income has taken a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Job seekers to report on progress after six months from today
    A new requirement for people on Jobseeker Support benefits to meet with MSD after six months to assess how their job search is going gets underway today. About 20,000 Jobseeker beneficiaries with full-time work obligations are expected to attend MSD’s new ‘Work check-in’ seminars over the next 12 months, Social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • New cops means more Police on the beat
    The decision to deploy more Police on the beat in Auckland CBD has been welcomed by Police Minister Mark Mitchell and Associate Police Minister Casey Costello. Starting from 1 July, an additional 21 police officers will be redeployed in Auckland City, bringing the total number of beat police in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes action to address youth crime
    The Government is introducing a new declaration for young offenders to ensure they face tougher consequences and are better supported to turn their lives around, Children’s Minister Karen Chhour announced today. The establishment of a Young Serious Offender declaration delivers on a coalition Government commitment and supports the Government’s target ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
    GDP figures for the March quarter reinforce the importance of restoring fiscal discipline to public spending and driving more economic growth, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  Data released today by Stats NZ shows GDP has risen 0.2 per cent for the quarter to March.   “While today’s data is technically in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Women continue to make up over 50 per cent on public sector boards
    Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees has reached 50 per cent or above for the fourth consecutive year, with women holding 53.9 per cent of public sector board roles, Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston says. “This is a fantastic achievement, but the work is not done. To ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supporting Māori business success
    The Coalition Government is supporting Māori to boost development and the Māori economy through investment in projects that benefit the regions, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka say. “As the Regional Development Minister, I am focused on supporting Māori to succeed. The Provincial Growth Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Better solutions for earthquake-prone buildings
    Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk has announced that the review into better managing the risks of earthquake-prone buildings has commenced. “The terms of reference published today demonstrate the Government’s commitment to ensuring we get the balance right between public safety and costs to building owners,” Mr Penk says.  “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up visit to Japan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has just finished a successful three-day visit to Japan, where he strengthened political relationships and boosted business links. Mr Luxon’s visit culminated in a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio followed by a state dinner. “It was important for me to meet Prime Minister Kishida in person ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Major business deals signed on PM’s Japan trip
    Significant business deals have been closed during the visit of Prime Minister Christopher Luxon to Japan this week, including in the areas of space, renewable energy and investment.  “Commercial deals like this demonstrate that we don’t just export high-quality agricultural products to Japan, but also our world-class technology, expertise, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Strategic Security speech, Tokyo
    Minasan, konnichiwa, kia ora and good afternoon everyone. Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today and thank you to our friends at the Institute for International Socio-Economic Studies and NEC for making this event possible today.  It gives me great pleasure to be here today, speaking with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • National Infrastructure Pipeline worth over $120 billion
    The National Infrastructure Pipeline, which provides a national view of current or planned infrastructure projects, from roads, to water infrastructure, to schools, and more, has climbed above $120 billion, Infrastructure Minister Chris Bishop says. “Our Government is investing a record amount in modern infrastructure that Kiwis can rely on as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Making it easier to build infrastructure
    The Government is modernising the Public Works Act to make it easier to build infrastructure, Minister for Land Information Chris Penk announced today. An independent panel will undertake an eight-week review of the Act and advise on common sense changes to enable large scale public works to be built faster and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • NZ enhances North Korea sanctions monitoring
    New Zealand will enhance its defence contributions to monitoring violations of sanctions against North Korea, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced today.  The enhancement will see the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) increase its contributions to North Korea sanctions monitoring, operating out of Japan. “This increase reflects the importance New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
    Good afternoon everyone. It’s great to be with you all today before we wrap up Day One of the annual Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference. Thank you to the organisers and sponsors of this conference, for the chance to talk to you about the upcoming health and safety consultation. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Ōtaki to north of Levin alliance agreements signed
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed an important milestone for the Ōtaki to north of Levin Road of National Significance (RoNS), following the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) signing interim alliance agreements with two design and construction teams who will develop and ultimately build the new expressway.“The Government’s priority for transport ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Improvements to stopping Digital Child Exploitation
    The Department of Internal Affairs [Department] is making a significant upgrade to their Digital Child Exploitation Filtering System, which blocks access to websites known to host child sexual abuse material, says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “The Department will incorporate the up-to-date lists of websites hosting child sexual ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New vaccine research aims to combat prevalent bovine disease
    A vaccine to prevent an infectious disease that costs New Zealand cattle farmers more than $190 million each year could radically improve the health of our cows and boost on-farm productivity, Associate Agriculture Minister Andrew Hoggard says. The Ministry for Primary Industries is backing a project that aims to develop ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Making it easier to build granny flats
    The Government has today announced that it is making it easier for people to build granny flats, Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters and RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop say. “Making it easier to build granny flats will make it more affordable for families to live the way that suits them ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang at Government House in Wellington today.  “I was pleased to welcome Premier Li to Wellington for his first official visit, which marks 10 years since New Zealand and China established a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership,” Mr Luxon says. “The Premier and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
    The coalition Government is taking action to reduce the gender pay gap in New Zealand through the development of a voluntary calculation tool. “Gender pay gaps have impacted women for decades, which is why we need to continue to drive change in New Zealand,” Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
    The coalition Government is boosting funding for Rural Support Trusts to provide more help to farmers and growers under pressure, Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson announced today. “A strong and thriving agricultural sector is crucial to the New Zealand economy and one of the ways to support it is to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Latest data shows size of public service decreasing
    Spending on contractors and consultants continues to fall and the size of the Public Service workforce has started to decrease after years of growth, according to the latest data released today by the Public Service Commission. Workforce data for the quarter from 31 December 23 to 31 March 24 shows ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the Law Association
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