Open mike 30/10/2014

Written By: - Date published: 6:30 am, October 30th, 2014 - 225 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

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

Step up to the mike …

225 comments on “Open mike 30/10/2014 ”

  1. millsy 1

    The drumbeat for tolls are getting louder and louder. Apparently every other country has tolls and ‘nobody bats an eyelid’.

    • Paul 1.1

      Solutions we won’t hear.
      Increase income tax on the wealthy
      A polluters tax

      • phillip ure 1.1.1

        a financial transaction tax on the aussie banksters..

        • nadis

          “a financial transaction tax on the aussie banksters..”

          I think you meant to say:

          “a financial transaction tax on bank customers..”

          I can assure you a financial transaction tax won’t hit the banks, and won’t affect financial speculators who will just move their activities to an offshore jurisdiction.

          • phillip ure

            don’t talk rubbish nadis..

            ..we are the outliers by not already having one..

            • nadis

              I tell you what – I won’t lecture you on dope smoking and lying around the house all day, you don’t lecture me on the finance industry.

              Yes plenty of countries have stamp duty type taxes but what you are alluding to – a Tobin style tax – has not been effectively implemented anywhere.

              We could easily put a stamp duty style tax on asset transfers (lieke australia, like the UK, like Switzerland, like Greece, like India, like France etc etc.

              But their is one common theme from all of these. It hasn’t raised anything like the revenue promised, and has created siginifcant avoidance industries. Sweden is a really good example of how the tax doesnt work. When they introducd a financial services tax on share and fixed income transaction it destroyed local trading volumes, created an offshore broking industry and raised very little tax.

              Unless every jurisdiction introduces the same tax under the same rules, then any tax will be easily avoided. Taxing the FX market is hardest of all yet that is the market everyone focuses on. You look at daily volume in NZD – call it $120 billion. A tax on that of just 0.001% would raise $1.2 million per day or $300 million per year right? Easy money except that this would happen: Banks would settle all the transactions with each other offshore through London or Singapore (most already do). Onlyj the net amount would be settled from the bank with the reserve bank each day. And what is the overall net amount? Zero (every buyer of NZD means there is seller obviously). It would be very trivial for the banks to ensure that very little net settlement occurs with the RBNZ, Therefore very little tax raised. For years banks have made billions out of arbitraging different tax systems (one simple trade was tax deductibility of interest costs in an offshore market like the US or EU, and tax free (for non residents) of income in lace like NZ. A bit of financial engineering and voila – full deductibility of interest costs, no tax on payments. Do a transaction of 1 or 2 or 5 billion face value and risk free money. Until a few years ago NZ was ground central for that trade. Now its just Russian mob money that gets laundered through NZ courtesy of our largest law firms who conveniently don’t have to meet the new anti-money lundering laws on their trust accounts.

              A tax on share transactions or house transfers is easier to police but there will still be avoidance measures taken. When farm subsidies were removed in the 80’s the immediate impact was a drop in farm land values equal to the net present value of the subsidy.

              Despite my diatribe I don’t have a problem with a well defined financial transactions tax, but just remember there are several truths that have to be recognised.

              – Banks wont pay it, customers (i.e., you and me) will
              – It won’t raise anything like the money projected because of avoidance
              – It will have a contractionary effect on the market it is levied on

              • a stout effort there on presenting the ‘it’s too hard!,,let’s-do-nothing!”-case…

                ..but i’m calling bullshit..

       do know the eu is on the brink of doing such a thing..don’t you..?

                ..all we have to do is copy the bits of their model that we like/want..

       sound like those who scream about taking all their money to australia should anyone dare suggest a higher top tax rate here..

                ..and in doing so hope we are all dumb enough not to know that the top tax rate in australia is 45%..

                .and i concede it/ftt will be more complex than just raising gst..

                ..but it is eminently-do-able..

                ..and with the actual charge on each single transaction being so small..

                ..the cost of avoidance wd be more than paying it..

                ..the banks/ters will learn to live with it..

       go on..!..back to yr trading-screen..!

                • TheContrarian

                  How quickly:
                  “..we are the outliers by not already having one..”

                  “ do know the eu is on the brink of doing such a thing..don’t you..?”

                  • have you always specialised in missing the bleeding-point..?

                    ..or is this a recent development for you..?

                    ..(and have you met that alan..? have much in common..)

              • Colonial Rawshark

                I can assure you a financial transaction tax won’t hit the banks, and won’t affect financial speculators who will just move their activities to an offshore jurisdiction.

                If it won’t hit banks, why are you lobbying so hard against an FTT?

                If financial speculators want to leave NZ: GOOD

                – Banks wont pay it, customers (i.e., you and me) will
                – It won’t raise anything like the money projected because of avoidance
                – It will have a contractionary effect on the market it is levied on

                1) We want the financial speculative sector to undergo a contraction to make room for the real economy and real workers. As a provider of nothing more than intermediate goods, the financial sector should never make up more than 10% of GDP.

                2) The tax doesn’t have to raise a particularly large amount money in of itself, stopping financial speculation (and asset price hikes) will accrue many benefits to the real economy, and to labour (as opposed to financial capital).

                3) Nadis, it is a financial *transaction* tax. If like most ordinary people you only do a handful of bank transactions a day you’ll hardly be touched. Speculators and traders who do tens of thousands of transactions a day – will be heavily affected. Further you can structure it so that only transactions over $500 are affected by the FTT. Which means that the majority of ordinary peoples’ day to day transactions will be completely untouched.

                Basically, the more you bitch, the more effective you suggest the FTT is going to be.

                • nadis

                  Lobbying against it would be where I said:

                  ” I don’t have a problem with a well defined financial transactions tax”

                  The point I was making is I think it is beyond the ability of a single government to implement an effective Tobin style tax. Stamp duty type taxes no problem, but you are kidding yourself if you think a single government can unilaterally impose an effective Tobin tax aimed at institutional players.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  As a provider of nothing more than intermediate goods, the financial sector should never make up more than 10% of GDP.

                  Actually, that should be about 1 to 2 percent of the economy.

                • Bob

                  FTT would be a disaster and the customer would end up paying.

              • Draco T Bastard

                But their is one common theme from all of these. It hasn’t raised anything like the revenue promised, and has created siginifcant avoidance industries.

                The purpose of a tax isn’t just to raise money for government and people avoiding taxes should be going to jail.

                Unless every jurisdiction introduces the same tax under the same rules, then any tax will be easily avoided.

                There’s a solution to that. In fact, it’s a solution we used to have – capital controls. In fact, what you’re specifically saying there is that the free-market encourages bludging.

                Banks wont pay it, customers (i.e., you and me) will

                That’s partially true but it will be a very small amount for the average person because the majority of financial transactions are done by by banks for clients in forex. In other words, the NZ$ will drop from being one of the most traded currencies in the world.

                It will have a contractionary effect on the market it is levied on

                Not necessarily and that’s not necessarily a bad effect anyway.

              • Jones

                “It will have a contractionary effect on the market it is levied on”

                Given the bloated, insolvent nature of the financial sector, this could be a very good thing.

    • Isn’t it just for Auckland? If so, the rest of us in “real New Zealand” don’t care. 😉

    • Clemgeopin 1.3

      The toll charges definitely discriminate against the less wealthy and the poor. So, all people are not treated with equality in public amenities. That is unfair, uncivilised, against our values and i am sensing that it is probably illegal.

      • Rob 1.3.1

        Yep, we have over 120 in our factory in East Tamaki that come from all over Auckland. Given that there is absolutely no public transport of any use to over 90% of this staff, most use motorways.

  2. Key govt priorities:-
    New limos (~$20 m)
    New flag ($26 m)
    Sell state houses

    child poverty

    • Oh come on. The flag debate will be fun. My submission will be a brown on brown flag symbolising a river full of cowshit surrounded by an atmosphere of bullshit. I dare anyone to do better?

      • ma rohemo 2.1.1

        I suggest white on white for the flag.
        Across it would be the wording ” I’m all white jack “

      • greywarshark 2.1.2

        @ Tom Jackson
        That’s just plagiarism. Terry Pratchett wrote about a brown river at Ankh-Morpork in his Disc World series. If you want to trash NZ you will have to go further down than adopting their symbols.

        Terry’s city-state had a Patrician leader with a very cunning plan. He had a very honest police commander, committed to duty, loyal to the Patrician and to serving the citizens fairly. Despite its many faults it was bustling and vital in a sleezy way, lots of business activity going on though caveat emptor was obviously the slogan. At least they knew where corruption was, it wasn’t glossed over. And criminality was rule-bound by the Guilds which were probably tighter on deviation than the engineers guild here.

        • Tom Jackson

          I’ve never read a word that man has written. I stopped reading children’s literature when I was about 10.

          • greywarshark

            @ Tom Jackson
            Well that’s the answer to your problem then. You lost the ability as you grew up to think around problems, think imaginatively, brainstorm and step outside uptight conformity. Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings come some clear unvarnished truths. This obviously has been worrying you, perhaps unconsciously, otherwise why would you write here where all the ‘crazies’ are.

            (But that may be a little unfair. Bringing the cow pollution into the frame, is a ‘lateral’ move, and all together it was s bit of sharp humour. Only we don’t want this brown patch in our lives to be commemorated for ever on a flag.)

            Probably you aren’t sleeping well at night. Have you been dreaming lately? That is a good sign of a mind trying to climb out and escape the polished, solid confines of a self-absorbed middle class vocational education.

            I think my diagnosis is complete. I’ll send you my bill when I have drawn it up and added any disbursements that I can find.

            • b waghorn

              Any one who hasn’t read a bit Pratchett has missed out I loved lesser gods .

              • pratchettt is almost Shakespearian imho.

                “Lords and Ladies”: Midsummer Nights’ Dream
                “Small Gods”: very clever satire of religion
                “Carpe Jugulum”: about seizing political power

                Don’t miss “Good Omens” (co-authored with Neil Gaiman): a weird take on “The Omen” and the anti-christ 🙂

                • b waghorn

                  Small goods makes me think of politics iv’e been hoping act would buzz off to the desert for years

          • Rawsharkosaurus

            I’ve never read a word that man has written.

            That’s your problem right there.

            I stopped reading children’s literature when I was about 10.

            Last year, then?

            Most of his books – three quarters or so – are actually for adults. You might be old enough to read them in a few years’ time.

      • Tracey 2.1.3

        stars and stripes with a yellow fern

        • greywarshark

          Kauri tree half and half, good on one side, affected by the organism on the other, dessicated, branches drooping, fungus patches? I think that the bug stops the flow of liquid up the tree’s channels. That’s how NZ is going and would be a fair portrayal of our society’s condition. Against a blue and background with one white horizontal strips representing the land of the long white cloud..

    • Chooky 2.2

      millions spent on changing the flag = John Key’s vanity project

      The millions to be spent on changing the flag it is a travesty….the money should be spent on State Education, State housing and children of the poor

      John Key fancies himself as the new father of the nation ( bullshit!)

  3. Dont worry. Be happy 3

    How about this idea for reducing traffic congestion and easing the housing crisis in Auckland? Stop closing down the rest if NZ and forcing people to move there.

    Surely some ways this economy is run resemble slavery (no choice about where you live and work, forced to work longer and harder than the hours you get paid for, kids with malnutrition diseases)

    • how about setting up reservations for the poor..?..(there’s lots of spare land on the desert rd..)

      ..investigate how the americans did it with the indians..and duplicate that..

      ..that wd keep them out of sight/minds-eye..

      ..and wd free up all those state houses for developers..

    • b waghorn 3.2

      I thought I had on this is in courage people to retire to the province’s maybe a good rail system to northland build some modern we’ll equipped hospitals up there make it nz s sunshine coast . northland needs work Auckland needs less people

      • phillip ure 3.2.1

        @ waghorn.

        …+ 1..

        ..why not indeed..!

      • JanM 3.2.2

        Oh yes, please – I live in Northland and would so love a train service – like the one Campbell Live is suggesting for the Waikato. I rode on the Wairarapa line into Wellington recently and it was so cool

        • nadis

          Simplest policy to make the largest difference would be that any growth in the support functions for govt depts should be outside Wellington and Auckland. Call centres and informationn handling functions should be going in to towns like whangarei, hamilton, palmerston North, Nelson, Timaru, Dunedin, Invercargill.

          Would cost nothing and would probably save money through cheaper rents. And give management a chance to grow their air miles.

          • BM

            Hamilton doesn’t need any help, It’s going great guns here.
            Dunedin, on the other hand needs all the help it can get.

            • minarch

              mate be honest with yourself

              Hamilton is a s**Thole

              full of junkies and petty crooks…


              • BM

                When was the last time you were in Hamilton?

                • minarch

                  I have the misfortune to visit regularly

                  I also attended the university for a year, I know H-Town (ever wonder what the H stands for ?) better than I would like

                  Oh and by the way the H stands for Heroin….

                • Tracey

                  since when did you think a factual basis was needed for an opinion?

                  • Hamilton is the Redneck capital of NZ and that is saying something!

                    • Come on mate, the Tron is multi-culti-land compared to Nelson or Timaru. Did you not notice the Chiefs parading down the main street with the Super Rugby trophy for the last 2 years?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      You see what heroin can do for a community?

                    • greywarshark

                      @ ropata r.i. 7.03pm
                      Nelson I am informed is the Chin capital of NZ. The Chin have been forced out of Burma-Myanmar. We have Russian seamen, Japanese, Swedish, students. We have an active marae here. We have Indians from Gujarat, Turks from Istanbul, Koreans from the south of course, We have had Bhutanese, who can have digestion difficulties when they live at sea level instead of up in the high mountains. We have Germans, and German sausages, we have Irish who organise dances and music, we have Chinese from Xian, we have Karen people,We have Dutch, We have Filipinos, we have Chinese, we have Tongans, there is a strong Wesleyan group here, we have tango from South America, we have French with Alliance Francaise, we have Spanish, we are having Mexcan muertes? festival soon. We probably have some Australians too.

                      I personally or people that I know, have met and are in community with them all. We are fairly mutii-culti in Nelson.

                    • wekarawshark

                      ropata, you think Timaru or Nelson are redneck country? ? Try Te Anau or Gore (not that those places don’t have their own charms).

                    • OK, my bad. I was just going by some news report of race based violence in Nelson a few years back.

                      There used to be a bunch of “white power” idiots operating in Timaru and Ashburton.

                      The further south you go the more homogenised you get…

                    • greywarshark

                      @ ropata r.i.
                      The Chinese member on the cultural committee has said that there is still racial harrassment here, though it has been better lately.

              • halfcrown

                I don’t want to get into childish parochial arguments over where one lives. but as a shit hole Hamilton must be doing a few things right.
                The Public Gardens (do you know there are such things as Public Gardens in Hamilton) have been voted the best gardens in the world 2014.

                • BM

                  The Hamilton gardens are really impressive, it’s taken close on 25 years for the council to realize what an asset they are and are finally injecting funds into them instead of waiting for private sponsorship.

                • minarch

                  “Every city has its scummy areas, you are probably just a shit magnet”

                  judging by your presence it would appear so ……

                  try harder next time Naki Nugget…

                • minarch

                  yep good old Hamilton gardens , Hottest cruising/cottaging site in the north island….

                  • Naki man

                    “yep good old Hamilton gardens , Hottest cruising/cottaging site in the north island….”

                    That would explain your visits to hamilton

                    • Minarch

                      hey a bit of homophobia , why am i not surprised ?

                      so tell me what do they do to “queers” down in the “naki” (also another hotbed of junkies, outlaw MCs and petty crime….) ?

            • Naki man

              I thought you were a Jaffa, BM

      • halfcrown 3.2.3

        “I thought I had on this is in courage people to retire to the province’s maybe a good rail system to northland build some modern we’ll equipped hospitals up there make it nz s sunshine coast . northland needs work Auckland needs less people”

        Can’t do that, There are more important things to spend money on. Like the not needed referendum on the flag. Who gives a fuck what flag we have.

  4. joe90 4

    Vladimir Putin spoke in Sochi a few days ago: Play-time is over.

    The Club Orlov tl;dr –

    1. Russia will no longer play games and engage in back-room negotiations over trifles. But Russia is prepared for serious conversations and agreements, if these are conducive to collective security, are based on fairness and take into account the interests of each side.

    2. All systems of global collective security now lie in ruins. There are no longer any international security guarantees at all. And the entity that destroyed them has a name: The United States of America.

    3. The builders of the New World Order have failed, having built a sand castle. Whether or not a new world order of any sort is to be built is not just Russia’s decision, but it is a decision that will not be made without Russia.

    4. Russia favors a conservative approach to introducing innovations into the social order, but is not opposed to investigating and discussing such innovations, to see if introducing any of them might be justified.

    5. Russia has no intention of going fishing in the murky waters created by America’s ever-expanding “empire of chaos,” and has no interest in building a new empire of her own (this is unnecessary; Russia’s challenges lie in developing her already vast territory). Neither is Russia willing to act as a savior of the world, as she had in the past.

    6. Russia will not attempt to reformat the world in her own image, but neither will she allow anyone to reformat her in their image. Russia will not close herself off from the world, but anyone who tries to close her off from the world will be sure to reap a whirlwind.

    7. Russia does not wish for the chaos to spread, does not want war, and has no intention of starting one. However, today Russia sees the outbreak of global war as almost inevitable, is prepared for it, and is continuing to prepare for it. Russia does not war—nor does she fear it.

    8. Russia does not intend to take an active role in thwarting those who are still attempting to construct their New World Order—until their efforts start to impinge on Russia’s key interests. Russia would prefer to stand by and watch them give themselves as many lumps as their poor heads can take. But those who manage to drag Russia into this process, through disregard for her interests, will be taught the true meaning of pain.

    9. In her external, and, even more so, internal politics, Russia’s power will rely not on the elites and their back-room dealing, but on the will of the people.

    To these nine points I would like to add a tenth:

    10. There is still a chance to construct a new world order that will avoid a world war. This new world order must of necessity include the United States—but can only do so on the same terms as everyone else: subject to international law and international agreements; refraining from all unilateral action; in full respect of the sovereignty of other nations.

    • nadis 4.1

      “Neither is Russia willing to act as a savior of the world, as she had in the past.”

      That is very funny. Almost as funny as this:

      “Russia’s power will rely not on the elites and their back-room dealing, but on the will of the people.”

      Right. Got it.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1

        Your authoritarianism is showing along with your ignorance.

        • nadis

          Really? I thought I was suggesting the gap between Russia’s words and Russia’s actions was ludicrously large. And yet all the time I was a fascist, unknown to me. Thanks for helping me with that.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Fascist 😉

          • greywarshark

            Before you have a laugh at Russia calling itself the saviour of the world at some stage, you should find out what they are referring to.

            Is it changing position to support the Allies in the Second World War? That stopped the dread Fascism of Hateler, which was timely. But then Communism came after WW2 which wasn’t popular.

      • joe90 4.1.2

        Neither is Russia willing to act as a savior of the world, as she had in the past.

        Well there was that time when Germany and Russia were going to roll through Europe and divvy up the spoils but Germany ruined it when they stabbed Russia in the back.

        Russia’s power will rely not on the elites and their back-room dealing, but on the will of the people.

        After it completes the annexation of the Sudetenland.

        • The Al1en

          Vlad the dictator. Changed the election laws in russia because he couldn’t be without power, relying on the will of a bigoted, racist homophobic populace, too dumb to realise they’ve been shit on as their country was divvied up between a handful of oligarchs.

          The reason why expansionist russia won’t get involved in Syria is because they’re protecting their oil deals with assad.
          Like the chinese, the russians won’t crack down on other dictatorships because it limits their ability to respond in Tibet, Taiwan, HK, South Ossetia, Chechnya, Crimea.

          Wouldn’t put too much faith in what vlad says. He isn’t genuine at all.

      • phillip ure 4.1.3

        @ nadis..

        “..That is very funny. .”

        ..are you actually unaware of the role russia/the russian people played in the second world war..?

        ..are you really that pig-ignorant..?

        • nadis

          Yeah I have heard reports of it. To channel Colin Craig – I wasn’t there and didn’t see it, but I can’t completely discount the many reports which claim it did happen.

          That would be the same war where Russia unilaterally declared it was coming to the aid of Europe to save them from Fascism? No question the meatgrinder of the eastern front broke Germany, but don’t pretend Russia participated for kumbuyah reasons. As important as Russia’s ruthlessness and carelessness for the lives of their own people (not to mention Eastern Europes people) was the industrial capacity of the USA. That and the Russian campaign were the two game changers for the allies.

          If Hitler hadn’t attacked Russia the alternative history might be quite interesting, though eventually one of Russia or Gemany would have started it.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      Now we just need NZ to say the same things.

    • DoublePlus Good 4.3

      Putin can put his words where his mouth is and withdraw from Donbass and Crimea. And stop fuelling wars in Syria. Until then, he can Crimea a river and stop whining that everyone thinks he is so mean.

    • Brutus Iscariot 4.4

      Outstanding link, thank you.

      I’m no Russophile, but the incompetence of US foreign policy needs to be pointed out.

  5. Tautoko Mangō Mata 5

    So John Armstrong and John Roughan are laying down the new narrative for Dirty Politics According to St John Key. “Someone phoned and told me who the hacker was, but other than having a look at this person, I thought, ‘Oh well … nothing will come of it. Life goes on’.”
    Nothing to see here… new flag, new flag…
    Also timed for same release day was Jenny Gibbs” withdrawal of support funding “Dirty Politics author in arts funding row”.

    • CrashCart 5.1

      Loved the line about edciding to just answer all questions reporters put to him on Dirty Polotics. I seem to remember it differently. Didn’t he start getting very testy with questions about it and refuse to answer questions on it?

    • Manuka - Ancient Order of Rawsharks 5.2

      If JK had information that should have gone to police investigating the case, why did he withhold it? Oh that’s right, then there would have been no excuse to swipe Hager’s property and resources.

    • ianmac 5.3

      If Mr Key knows who Rawshark is then you would think that the police would be on to him quickly with a Hager-like warrant.

    • Tracey 5.4

      was that in his capacity as prying minister and if not that must mean it was Slater.

    • Jenny Kirk 5.5

      Aren’t artists and writers in the first line of people to be exterminated in a totalitarian state, Tautoko ? Looks like Jenny Gibbs has started the trend ……

    • rawshark-yeshe 5.6

      A vital question remains in this litany of dissembling …… the various stories of from what and when and why Jason Ede resigned … if we are to believe the stories given earlier, Ede was not working for Key when DP was published, but rather working for the National Party. So why then did Ede offer his resignation to the Head of Prime MInister’s Dept after the election ??

      ( Don’t have inks but can find to verify. I want someone to ask in the House)

      And I am so sad to see the attacks sparking again against Kim Dotcom; fired up by the trust Herald hate machine.

      And whatever happened to Donghua Liu’s violence charges against his wife and mother ? Why no resolution after the man pleased guilty, but then asked to change his plea ?

      Shonky does not begin to describe our govt, does it ??

  6. “..John Pilger:.The Hidden Story of How America and Britain Overthrew the Government of Their ‘Ally’ Australia..

    ..Empire is an ugly business..”


    • ianmac 6.1

      Thanks Phillip. Always wondered about the Whitlam backstory.
      And in the current NZ situation? No problem I guess since John Key is such a busy friend of USA. Are we an independent self governing nation? Ha! Toady to Obama really!

  7. ankerawshark 8

    This is a fascinating experiment. A young attractive woman wearing jeans and a tee-shirt walks the streets of New York city for 10 hours, She is filmed by a guy walking in front of her with a camera in her back pack. In ten hours she gets something like 110 guys cat calling etc. She appears to get two guys who walk alongside her for 4 or 5 minutes. If you ever thought how flattering for women, watch the video to see what “we” have to put up with. It doesn’t look like a lot of fun.

    And now the actress is getting rape threats on-line.

    Anybody care to say we don’t have a rape culture as some suggested yesterday under the Roast Buster’s post?

    • Yes.

      You’ve failed to provide evidence for the connection between street harassment and rape. But the people who purvey the rape culture meme seem to think that requiring evidence is a sexist conspiracy and that everything boils down to one explanatory factor. What a bunch of dumbos.

      • Tracey 8.1.1

        you seem to have failed to understand that aws was talking about rape culture, which is a spectrum base don the value placed on women/girls in a society.

        you seem to have decided that he/his post was about evidence for rape cases. It wasn’t.

      • wekarawshark 8.1.2

        “But the people who purvey the rape culture meme seem to think that requiring evidence is a sexist conspiracy and that everything boils down to one explanatory factor.”

        Liar. Your reactionary fear is showing.

  8. ankerawshark 9

    How would you describe the culture of men harassing a young woman in the street, including trailing her. Then threatening rape on-line to her Tom? Does that all sit o.k. with you?

    Put yourself in that actresses position. Feeling nice and relaxed now?

    See I am not wedded to the term Rape Culture, I am happy for it to be named something else, but we need to describe it somehow cause its out there. Just interested to know what you would call it?

    • BM 9.1

      USA is not NZ.

      Different country, different culture.

      • minarch 9.1.1

        IMO NZ is FAR more misogynistic than a lot of other countries i have visited/lived in

      • ankerawshark 9.1.2

        BM, what do you think is the difference between US culture and NZ culture?

        How is it different in terms of the issue of rape and sexual harassment of women?

        How would you describe the culture in America if the social experiment in the link above is anything to go by? What to you make of the on-line comments threatening to rape the woman concerned?

        • BM

          How about someone does the same experiment in Auckland and then compare the results.
          If it’s the same, I’ll agree that there obviously exists a culture of hassling woman in NZ.

          Until then, this video just demonstrates the attitudes of New York men.

          • ankerawshark

            BM You are suggesting we run the experiment in Ak that was run in NY to see if the same culture of hassling women exists in NZ. This to me suggests you have an open mind on what it is like for women in NZ. I appreciate that.

            I don’t live in Auckland neither do I have the resources to set up such an experiment. Could there be some other was we could collect data re women being harassed by men in NZ?

            Do you think we can extrapolate that is NZ women and NY woman are harassed in the street and the latter threatened with rape for taking part in te experiment that there is a connection with rape? If not why not?

            Did you watch the video of the NY woman? How did you respond?

            • nadis

              I think we can argue that a small part of NZ society is deeply immersed in a highly misogynistic rape culture, a larger part is enabling that or at least not actively discouraging it. But people are essentially decent and I think the majority of people in NZ – or at least in mycircles – would call people on shit behaviour.

              For the 100 people that hassled thge women in that applling video, thousands would have walked past without a single thought, positive or negative.

              ABC news in the states used to run a program where they would put actors in to sexist/racist/discriminatory situations and see how observers reacted. Generally it was surprising ly positive – here’s an interesting one re racism:


              Just google “what would you do”

              • Molly

                You state that many walked by so by that definition are neutral – but you forget that they also didn’t comment or take action to stop the behaviour. That is because current “culture” thinks this is normal.

                A relevant comparison would be to produce a video of a guy walking through NY, would be unlikely to have the same number of instances of uninvited comment or behaviour. That is because the “normal culture” experience by most males does not involve this kind of continual stranger harassment.

                And yes, you are right – NZ and US culture is expressed differently. But the experience of being disregarded and denigrated because you are female is likely to be the same.

                • You do realise that humans are programmed to reproduce right?

                  But please continue to cast generalised aspersions against people who have nothing to do with the problem. I’m sure they will be enlightened when you call them rapists. That’s a great basis for constructive dialogue.

                  “Rape culture” … a sure vote winner 🙁

                  • McFlock

                    You do realise that humans are programmed to reproduce right?

                    So much wrong in one little question:

                    “programmed” – really? As males we’re forced to act like threateningly obsessive dickheads, no free will about it at all, or any way to realise the effect our behaviour might have on complete strangers and therefore moderate our behaviour accordingly?

                    “humans are programmed to reproduce” – really? all humans? Even all the heterosexual humans? So apparently everybody wants a kid – is that why the birthrate plummets as countries’ economies improve?

                    And as a side-note, thanks for calling me an uncontrollable, boorish sperm donor on legs as part of your efforts to excuse the harrassment of women. /sarc

                    • + 1

                      It seems so difficult for some men to be able to even talk about rape culture, imagine their reactions if they had to live it, every day…

                    • BM

                      Luckily we don’t have that sort of culture here in good o’l NZ.

                    • Who’s excusing harrassment? At least I don’t randomly accuse people of being rapists or enablers. This is a stupid and useless narrative and not one that helps the Left.

                    • McFlock

                      Who’s excusing harrassment?

                      You, by removing the independent agency of men when you argue that their behaviour is the automatic result of “programming”, making them no more responsible for their actions than a machine is. In other words “To seek to extenuate or remove the blame of (an acknowledged fault).”

                      Oh, and BM – citation needed. Especially since I saw that sort of behaviour routinely in NZ when I worked in public safety patrols (I’m in an office these days, well protected from the elements and the general public).

                      And yes, I was i a position to lecture the little shits about it, and did so.

                    • An attractive young woman gets a reaction from some young boofheads. Should all males apologise for being human now?

                      PS: I admire your stand against such behaviour, I just think the equivalence to rape is ridiculous.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      An attractive young woman gets a reaction from some young boofheads. Should all males apologise for being human now?

                      “Attractive” – shit, I only saw her appearance and you can deduce her character! Is that like a special gift, or is it you embodying rape culture much?

                    • wekarawshark

                      Can someone please link to where someone called men rapists? I missed that.

                    • McFlock

                      An attractive young woman gets a reaction from some young boofheads. Should all males apologise for being human now?

                      Well, if by “apology” you’d accept “acknowledging the harrassment and violence inflicted by their peers, and those instances where their own behaviour has fallen short”, then yes.

                      But a start would be to stop yourself excusing such behaviour by attributing it to “programming” rather than willful decisions made by moral agents.

                    • This is going nowhere, as I knew it would. Perhaps Dr. Jarrod Gilbert can help: (emphasis mine)


                      I am troubled by the use of this term ‘rape culture’ that New Zealand is said to uphold. […] It’s entering the kiwi lexicon.

                      Despite its sociological roots in the 1970s where it undoubtedly served an important polemical purpose, anybody using the term ‘rape culture’ in the New Zealand context today are either unfamiliar with what culture means or are simply using it incorrectly.

                      We do not celebrate rape in art nor is it a custom or social behaviour of our society. Actually, we sanction strongly against it. New Zealand most certainly does not uphold a rape culture. It’s a misnomer that has taken on a life of its own.

                      There are some who victim-blame, and traditionally policing has been far from ideal, but the former tends to be isolated to small, mostly conservative or religious individuals, and the latter has changed dramatically. Even historically, when these elements were more rife, it’s doubtful this ever encapsulated a ‘rape culture’ per se. Furthermore, by overegging the cake the people who use the term do a disservice to the important cause of addressing sexual violence.

                      This is why many men got upset with David Cunliffe apologising for being a man, or why some turn around an argument about male violence and point out violence perpetuated by women. It’s because the vast majority of men are not violent toward women, sexual or otherwise. I have sympathy with this position of frustration; innocent people don’t like to be labelled. It’s akin to generalising that women are caregivers (though the vast majority of primary caregivers are female) because it’s sexist, perhaps offensive. Although not as offensive as saying that New Zealand’s men uphold a culture of rape.

                      What seems to be called “rape culture” so liberally around here amounts to some rude comments and unwelcome attention. Using such loaded language trivialises actual rape. It’s inaccurate, offensive, and unhelpful.

                    • McFlock

                      It might have helped if it were at all relevent to my specific criticism of your comment that attributed the wilful harrassment of strangers to the doubtful assertion that we men are “programmed to reproduce” to the point that we cannot control verbal interaction with women.

                      I mean, it was complete bollocks with gaps one could drive holes through, but it might have helped if it were actually relevant.

                    • wekarawshark

                      ropata, neither you nor the man you quoted understand what rape culture actually is as the term is used. Until you make an effort to understand what is meant by the term by the people that use it you have absolutely no validity in making comment on it.

                    • This “rape culture” meme is a waste of time that only puts peoples backs up. What a debacle and a sure vote loser. But thanks for missing my point and tossing casual insults.

                    • McFlock

                      It seems to particularly irritate those people who refuse to consider their own actions in excusing the daily harrassment of women who are simply going about their business.

                    • Who’s excusing rude behaviour or harrassment? I have been objecting to it the whole time. I simply disagree with an inaccurate and inflammatory choice of terminology.

                    • McFlock

                      Who’s excusing rude behaviour or harrassment?

                      You did. In this very thread.

                      I explained it for you here.

                  • karol

                    This is rape culture

                    I understand what culture is. It’s practices and beliefs that permeate everyday life.

      • Tracey 9.1.3

        keep telling yourself that BM

  9. KJS0ne 10

    Following a lively discussion at my local branch last night, I’m utterly convinced that if we are going to win an election in 2017 the Labour party needs to rebuild from the ground up. This means grass roots, local level. Getting new and old hands a like (re)inspired to join a movement that does more than just align with their political leanings. Branches need to be showing the public that they’re aiding and assisting the community grow, that they stand for something more than a loose confederacy of unrelated policies (ala Vote Positive).

    I’m really starting to think that elections (for the left) are going to be won and lost at this level.

    • BM 10.1

      The left needs to aim for 2020.

      Huge ask to rebuild a party and win an election in three years.

      • DoublePlus Good 10.1.1

        A 5% swing left delivers a centre-left coalition, which is not an unrealistic swing by any stretch of the imagination.

        • BM

          Labour needs to be rebuilt.
          That’s going to take at least three years.

          Any swing against the government will be towards NZ first or the conservatives, not towards the left block of labour,green and mana.

          • phillip ure

            you do trowel it on..don’t you bm..

            ..national going from lowest result ever in 2002 to very very close to winning in 2005..

            ..that just blows yr whole timeline-thesis out of the

            • BM

              That’s National with all it’s money and clout and if they couldn’t win in a three year time frame, labours got no chance at all.

              2020 is a far more realistic proposition though, especially if Andrew Little has had 5 years of leadership under his belt.

              Unrealistic expectations by the party faithful will only hinder the rebuild.

              • bearded rawshark

                3 years is a hell of a long time in politics

                • Achtung

                  Not with Labour’s current state. Unless the infighting stops, which is unlikely, 2020 appears a more achievable target.

                  Why has the LP chosen to vent his internal problems in front of the entire country? Who was the genius who devised that suicidal process?

              • and you are still fpp thinkink..

                ..yes..labour has to get their shit together..

                ..and labour/greens..(and mana/maori party?) have to learn how to not cannabilise each other..and to thus allow the right to walk thru the middle..

                ..c.f./think ohariu-belmont..)

                ..but it is the progressive-bloc that will win any election..

      ’s not just down to labour..

                • BM

                  Labour needs to be around 35% to have a chance.
                  The greens will always be around 10-12 %, unless they work with National.
                  As a purely labour side kick party 10-12% is their ceiling.

                  You’d also have to rely on NZ first, which more than likely go with National once Peters go.

                  • les

                    if Winston goes ,will NZ First survive?Ron Mark is popular but I suspect Craig and Co will win over alot of their support base.

      • swordfish 10.1.2

        “huge ask to rebuild a party and win an election in three years”

        And yet you Tories came damn close in 2005 after Young Master English’s 21 percenter in 2002. Just 3 years later, Winnie was all that stood between you and the Treasury benches.

        Oops, Phillip beat me to it. Should have read the discussion first !

    • Peter 10.2

      ….. well it cetainly won’t be won by trying to communicate via the MSM, so this sounds like a good strategy

  10. minarch 11

    Another example of our fine constabulary here in NZ

    Former police Detective Sergeant Michael Blowers pleaded guilty in the High Court at Whangarei to supplying methamphetamine between June 1, 2011 and June 31, 2012, and a charge of stealing methamphetamine from a police exhibit room

  11. Ah, so that’s how they get kdc out of the country without risking a defeat in an extradition hearing – Miraculously find out after all this time he lied on his residency papers so he can be deported fair and square.
    Though 3 news reports it was his advisors that informed immigration, so could just be dirty politics in the membrane.

    Hope Mona and the kids aren’t clipped to his ticket, though the NZ citizen newborns should be okay. Would be a callous judge to split up a family over a speeding ticket.

    • mickysavage 13.1

      The article does not read right. He should not have been allowed to plead guilty by letter and should have been obliged to turn up and I wonder if he was actually charged with speeding which does not technically involve a conviction that needs to be declared. Certainly at that speed though he should have been charged with driving at a dangerous speed.

      • The Al1en 13.1.1

        You know the details far more in depth than I, so yes, sounds dodgier when read with your insight.

        As always with the kdc drama, it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out.

      • Tracey 13.1.2

        does this mean the two lius will also be deported… espesh the one who assaulted his partner and partners mother… rhetorical.

    • Draco T Bastard 13.2

      All that would do is send him back to Germany where the US would have to start the process of extradition again from the start and where, I suspect, it would be almost impossible for them to get.

      • The Al1en 13.2.1

        I thought somewhere in Europe too and probably Germany.

        I don’t know the EU piracy laws or how they pander to the us corporates, but nothing a google search won’t put right. Not related, but I do know that there is a case pending or recently ruled in the European court about software companies licence agreements preventing resale by users, so they don’t always suck up to the money guys, though knowing politics, that could just be because they don’t bribe enough.

    • Bill 13.3

      Assuming immigration procedures haven’t changed too much over the past 20 years, immigration would have had his police record from Germany and any other country he had been in for more than six months.

      Immigration would also have been able to ask the NZ police for their records on him, or asked Dotcom to go to the trouble of having them provided.

      In other words, that whole piece (and how many physically aging boys haven’t put the peddle to the metal on their ‘new toy’?) oozes ‘business as usual’ smear, innuendo and doggerel from our glorious major news outlets.

  12. Raa 14

    I think this has particular resonance for New Zealand-based Aotearoans.

    ” Scientists warned that an earthquake could take out Fukushima. The Japanese ignored the warning … and even tore down the natural seawall which protected Fukushima from tidal waves.

    Fukushima is getting worse. And see *this* and *this*.

    Have the Japanese learned their lesson? Are they decommissioning nuclear plants which are built in dangerous environments?

    Of course not!

    Instead, they’re re-starting a nuclear plant near a volcano which is about to blow …

    A month ago, there was an eruption at Mt. Ontake:”

    • The Al1en 14.1

      Resisting all urges to relink the Austin Powers/Japanese twins skit.

      Nuclear free – One of NZ’s finest moments.

    • marty mars 14.2

      Awesome link thanks. I’ve been wondering what is happening at Fukushima and there were some nice links to the latest. This particular plan is off the scale in foolishness and potential (even worse) disaster.

  13. greywarshark 15

    Maire Leadbetter one of the names that should be remembered everytime that NZ and nuclear free are mentioned. She has written a book detailing the sacrifices, time and commitment made by the anti-nuclear campaigners.
    This was an invitation to listen to a recent conversation with her in Nelson about the book and its background.

    Maire Leadbeater – Peace, Power & Politics
    Hear how NZ Became Nuclear Free. Hear how ordinary people created a movement that changed New Zealand’s foreign policy and our identity as a nation; with dramatic stories of the colourful and courageous activist campaigns that led to 1987’s nuclear-free legislation. Maire was the spokesperson for the Auckland Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament in the 1980s, is the author of Negligent Neighbour (on New Zealand’s role in Timor-Leste), and holds an Amnesty International award for her work in human rights. Her book Peace, Power and Politics is a vital record of an important time of collective action.

  14. tinfoilhat 16

    Sigh……some days it’s hard to be a greenie.

  15. odysseus 17

    TFH – indeed; any temptation I may have had to support Greenies ( and there have been a large number of occasions ) has just gone down the toilet. What a fruitcake!

    • One Anonymous Bloke 17.1

      That’s drawing a long bow – cf: what Russel Norman said.

      Does this mean you’re going to vote for one of the parties that can’t quite admit neo-liberalism is a trainwreck?

    • greywarshark 17.2

      You would be a fairweather friend anyway odysseus. Keep trekking on till you find a home where you will be looked after without having to apply your mind at all.

  16. q-time had its’ moments.. party cannabis law reform spokesperson hague highlighted the stench of conflict of interests around katherine rich..her govt. role…

    ..and those she pimps for..(booze/tobacco/etc..)

    ..and a green party conflict of interest scandal is swirling/building..

    …a homeopathic-one..(!)..

    (how ‘green’ is that..? scandals are homeopathic-ones..

    ..and their very nature..cannot be ‘big’…it makes sense..really..)

  17. Tracey 19

    “…Changing New Zealand’s flag is likely to cost the taxpayer $30 million or more, with Finance Minister Bill English acknowledging he doesn’t know what the final total will be.

    Just the buildup to the votes on the flag – and the referendums themselves – will cost $25.7 million.

    Prime Minister John Key and Mr English yesterday confirmed details of the two-year process to select a potential successor to the current 112-year-old design.



    “…About BodySafe

    BodySafe is a mainstream secondary school-based programme for young people to promote healthy, respectful relationships and prevent experiences of sexual harm or violence.

    Sexual violence is a significant issue for young people in NZ with approximately 1 in 4 females and 1 in 8 males experiencing sexual abuse, most before the age of 16.

    Through information & skills-based education, the BodySafe programme aims to empower young people to prevent sexual violence and provide support to those who may have already experienced it in their lives.

    The BodySafe programme has been developed over a 10-15 year period and has become a recognised and credible programme in Auckland schools not only for its content but also for its care for student safety and well-being.

    The BodySafe programme was externally evaluated in 2010 by Massey University, which showed BodySafe to be effective, valued by students, and of high quality. BodySafe is internally evaluated every 6 months to ensure effectiveness and appropriateness of delivery…

    This year more than 4,500 year 10 and 11 students across greater Auckland will participate in one of our youth programmes. The need for our work is high; in every school in which we work there is an average of eight disclosures of sexual violence.


    it needs to be EVERY high school child, and $27m would probably do it for a number of years

    • greywarshark 19.1

      Bodysafe sounds good. Sex education used to be fact based, which was a great move on from virtually nothing, but the emotions and the social pressures need to be talked about, and they weren’t in the past. Even the idea of just saying no shouldn’t be laughed at. The USA has gone OTT with that. But it is a valid approach to trial. stying ut of and getting out of compromising situations is the next level of avoidance that needs to be discussed. So I hope these are all covered in the program.

      As does an understanding by each person of their own humanity and self-image as a person with respect for themselves, who should be prepared to respect others. That means the person is unlikely to be pressed into agreeing to unwanted sex, and that it is embraced as a meaningful, special activity, not just something a tumble of indulgence in an alcoholic haze, or a seemingly overwhelming attraction.

    • wekarawshark 19.2


  18. Clemgeopin 20

    Another housing idea for National.
    The example shown is almost enough to accommodate the front bench of the National government. Key can have the big house in front. He may even want to share it with Collins.

    A housing idea for the Nats

  19. the sages on ‘the panel’ laughing/sneering/jeering at the very idea that cow milk might not be that good for humans..


    ..braying their ignorances..

  20. Have to brag. Number 16 In The Blogosphere At Open Parachute

    • Te Reo Putake 22.1

      Good on ya, Ev. I may think your opinions are mostly fact free reactionary tosh, but you are consistent and persistent and you clearly have a solid connection with your constituency, deluded though they may be.

  21. Had a pay rise as a shill did you? Feeling magnanimous and all?
    Maybe you and your ilk are turning into a minority and people are waking up to a different paradigm whether you want it or not.

    • Te Reo Putake 23.1

      Sorry, bud, but even if nutters, like the rest of us, have good reason to be suspicious, their inability to work out what is really happening and their tendency to elevate the trivial to absurd heights means they will never achieve anything but intellectual and social isolation. Rationality is still the mark of intelligent debate. And knowing your enemy is still the primary defence against oppression.

  22. Paul 24

    Open question to those who voted for National just 6 weeks ago.
    This is not open to the extremist tr***s who appear here.

    1. Do you support NZ’s involvement in a Middle East war?
    2. Do you support the ending of the right of workers to a paid tea break?
    3. Do you support the ending of the right of workers to organise collective bargaining to negotiate better pay conditions ?
    4. What would persuade you that the National Party is not acting in your interests?

    Freedom from Fear?

  23. Goodsweat 25

    Those with a vote in who is to lead the Labour Party have to first make Sophie’s choice.

    I believe many may feel the candidate best placed to represent the agenda of the hardworking solid backbone of the left is probably not the candidate best placed to win over those few % of voters that the party needs to win an election.

    • wekarawshark 25.1

      core principles or betrayal, seems straightforward to me.

      • Goodsweat 25.1.1

        I think it is this dilemma that is at the core of unrest weka.

        The Standard bearing hardcore ” I’ve had 10 minutes for my morning tea since 1973 and I’m not hanging up my cup now.”

        And the flexible, do what it takes “Yep I can see how having me work straight through from 8 until 12 suits you. can we share the benefits please? What’s in it for me?”

        Politics is about aiming for the best compromise, nobody gets all the items on their wish-list.

        • wekarawshark

          I would tend to agree except for the fact that (a) the tea changes are being done by a govt that doesn’t give a shit about workers, and (b) it’s happening in an environment where worker rights have been consistenly eroded over many years. If instead we had a govt that understood the power differentials between workers and employers and where workers were respected, then I think your comparison would be more relevent rather than abstract.

          Lots of people I know work in jobs without contracts, often with no tea breaks, sick pay etc. I’m old enough to remember when those things were mandated, so the loss of more rights is naturally seen in light of that. I also know people who run small businesses and for whom the law is largely irrelevant. Whether they are a good employer or not comes down to who they are as people. There might be no tea break but there are other ways in which the workers are compensated or ‘share’ in the wealth created from the work. Flexibility only works in those situations where the person with the power isn’t an arse.

          All that aside, I think holding NZ as left as possible is more important than whether Labour wins the next election or not.

          • Clemgeopin

            Have you noticed that more and more businesses are taking away chairs in their premises making the workers stand all through the day, even when there are no customers to serve?

            • Bob

              This may sound bad but it is good for your health.

              • Clemgeopin

                It may be good for shorter time periods, but i simply don’t believe standing continuously for over 8 hours is ‘good for health’. I suspect that as they get older, these workers may develop problems such as varicose veins, arthritis, back ache, joint problems, foot problems etc. Who knows! There haven’t been studies to study effects over long periods such as 30 to 40 years, are there?

        • greywarshark

          @ Goodsweat
          I don’t like your comparisons. One is about having morning tea of 10 minutes, it used to be 15 sometimes, and someone thinks thats a good idea, though you might have said – at 10 a.m.

          The other is all lie down and be walked over without making an effort to be flexible.
          Allowing yourself to be worked into the woodwork is not a good idea. And while it may suit one person for a while, there are a larger number who will find it onerous.
          It is likely the one person will find after a time it is hard to keep going without a break and a refresh.

          And as for sharing the benefits, I suppose these are money, the break is worth more than the money to the body and mind of a worker, plus a wee time to chat while drinking. Don’t be willing to be treated like a machine, that’s stupid. If an order must go out pronto, or the season is in full swing and production must keep up, then workers should put themselves out for the boss and the task, but not give up breaks as a permanent thing. Wanting a break, a drink, and a change for 10 minutes each morning and afternoon shouldn’t be something that get put on a wish list.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Goodsweat doesn’t have tea breaks – the Quisling fuck has someone to bring coffee to their ethics-free zone whenever they want.

            Let’s hope the sputum content of managerial coffee maintains proportionality. Word gets around pretty quick.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          There’s nothing like telling lies for coming across as a liar, eh, Goodsweat – even your name is a transparent piece of sophistry.

          How are the pay rates in your future retirement home looking? Better hope none of your caregivers find out what you are, eh.

  24. Clemgeopin 26

    Watch John Key’s RW world of reduced worker conditions.

  25. SPC 27

    An 18 year old appears to have died from excess alcohol consumption.

    Misadventure based on a lack of awareness that this was possible, and in an environment where binge or excess drinking was encouraged rather than discouraged. A poverty of insight and appreciation of risk?

    So some say that if only we controlled society more this would not happen and so they advocate for a more controlled society.

    It is little different to an 18 year old involved in dangerous driving practice dying in an accident.

    Does anyone advocate the driving age going up to 20, or the price of petrol going up for the young and anyone else in society without much money – so why the age of alcohol purchase going up and minimum pricing for alcohol (which does not touch the favoured drinks of those on higher incomes – funny that)?

    And yes people have died from excess alcohol consumption in the past, when the legal purchase age was 20.

    What we are really witnessing is marginalisation. It happened to smokers – as numbers declined, the targeting of smokers intensified. By targeting those 18-20 and those who drink cheaper product (beer and the cheaper wine), they seek to obtain consent from the aging property owning middle class to control of the rest of the population. Note also the increasing drug testing of employees. The three are all directly connected to the beneficiary bashing meme. And why, because to divide the beneficiary poor from the low waged workers is the way to keep the workers low paid.

    The irony is that the beneficiary bashing meme is also used whenever the low paid workers seek higher pay. They are seen as ungrateful for having a job, as their pay is their market value. And of course they are told to live frugally to save a deposit for their home and aspire only to a modest starting home – still 2/3rd their income when it was 1/3rd only a generation ago.

    It’s simply all about putting the young and poor in their place and keeping them there.

    PS. The liberal “leftie” academics involved are listened to more by the nanny state in the Labour Party and Greens than they are by National, and it just goes to show how much of a divide there is between the working class and those who know best how to represent them in parliament. Thus the well to do establishment is more bi-partisan than we would care to admit. And this is why doing anything more than talking about poverty alleviation is so hard for any government.

  26. Not a PS Shark Sashimi 28

    For those who dream of a day when thousands and thousands of people come out to hear a politician: it happening in Scotland.

    Nicola Sturgeon, the new Leader of the Scottish Nationalist Party, is doing a tour of six location and it was a sell out!

    “All 20,000 tickets for Ms ­Sturgeon’s tour were snapped up within 24 hours and 1,650 people – SNP members plus some non-members brought along by friends – packed into the Corn Exchange last night.

    Still to come are political rallies of unprecedented size in modern times, the biggest being the Hydro in Glasgow with a capacity of 12,961. The Caird Hall in Dundee holds 1,950, ­Easterbrook Hall in Dumfries 700, the Eden Court Theatre in Inverness 990 and the Music Hall in Aberdeen 1,350.

    The SNP had 25,600 members on referendum day and this has risen to more than 82,000. With Ms Sturgeon the only candidate to succeed Alex Salmond she had no hustings to take part in, so the tour is designed to put across her vision for the party.”

    They had a 97% registration and 85% vote at the Referendum last month. There is a way to connect and engage with the people.

    Imagine that! On paper the SNP lost and they have taken off like a rocket! The Scottish Labour Party is is melt down. (pay wall)

    • Bob 28.1

      To be fair very few people are going to ever participate in a referendum of that significance. In reality 85% of people is not a great turn out when you think of what was at stake for Scotland it really should of have been in the high 90’s.

    • SPC 28.2

      An interesting development is the SN Party saying they would not be bound by the UK leaving the EU.

      This is in effect the SN Party government in Scotland trying to establish a relationship with the EU independent of that of the UK.

      So that any UK departure from the EU enabled independent Scottish membership of the EU and a form of de facto independence.

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    Public Service Minister Nicola Willis has thanked retiring Public Service Commissioner Peter Hughes for his 43 years of service. Mr Hughes retires today, after serving eight years as Public Service Commissioner.  “Peter Hughes is an outstanding public servant who has served many governments, regardless of their political leaning, with professionalism and ...
    2 days ago
  • Tourism data shows determination of sector
    New tourism data out today shows the continued importance of tourism to the New Zealand economy as tourism steps up to become our second-biggest export earner, Tourism Minister Matt Doocey says. “The Tourism Satellite Account shows how strongly tourism rebounded post-pandemic with total tourism expenditure in New Zealand of $37.7b ...
    2 days ago
  • Housing Minister thanks outgoing Kāinga Ora Chair
    Housing Minister Chris Bishop has today thanked outgoing Kāinga Ora – Homes & Communities Chair Vui Mark Gosche for his many years of public service. “Mr Gosche tendered his resignation as Chair yesterday evening. He will remain a member of the Board until the end of March,” says Housing Minister ...
    2 days ago
  • New sanctions package against Russia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced a new package of sanctions as part of the ongoing international sanction response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.   The new sanctions are:   Implementation of the G7-plus price cap on Russian-origin oil; making explicit the prohibition on exporting restricted ...
    2 days ago
  • Travel bans on extremist Israeli settlers
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced travel bans on a number of extremist Israeli settlers who have committed violent attacks against Palestinians in the West Bank.   “New Zealand is seriously concerned by the significant increase in extremist violence perpetrated by Israeli settlers against Palestinian populations in recent months. This is ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ designates entirety of Hamas as terrorist entity
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced today the designation of Hamas in its entirety as a terrorist entity.   “The terrorist attacks by Hamas in October 2023 were brutal and we have unequivocally condemned them,” Mr Luxon says.    Following these attacks, then Prime Minister Chris Hipkins commissioned advice from officials about designating the ...
    2 days ago
  • Government announces independent review of forestry ETS costs
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay has today announced an independent review into the forestry component of the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) Register to ensure it is efficient and cost-effective. “Up and down the country forestry owners have been raising concerns about the excessive costs that have been imposed upon them by ...
    2 days ago
  • Access barriers to PET-CT scans removed
    New Zealanders now have the same access to PET-CT scans no matter where they live, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says. Health New Zealand - Te Whatu Ora has approved funding an updated national set of criteria that will allow for about 1,000 more PET-CT scans a year to be ...
    3 days ago
  • Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines’ alliance extended
    Associate Transport Minister Matt Doocey announced today that the Government has extended Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines’ strategic alliance for another five years. “Reauthorising this strategic partnership means that passengers flying in and out of New Zealand will continue to have access to a wide range of flights and destinations,” ...
    3 days ago
  • Health system reforms need further action
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says the latest report into New Zealand’s health reforms shows a few benefits, but overall once again demonstrates a lack of leadership by the previous Labour government.  The Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) report released today was commissioned by the previous government to provide an independent ...
    3 days ago
  • Parallel assessment means new medicines assessed sooner
    Pharmac is changing its process so it can assess a funding application at the same time Medsafe is assessing the application for regulatory approval. This means that medicines will be able to be considered for funding sooner in New Zealand. “Access to medicines is a crucial part of many Kiwis’ ...
    3 days ago
  • Smokefree Amendment Bill Introduced
    The Government has today introduced an Amendment Bill that will repeal three parts of the previous Government’s planned changes to regulate smoked tobacco. “The Coalition Government is committed to the Smokefree 2025 goal, but we are taking a different regulatory approach to reducing smoking rates and the harm from smoking,” ...
    4 days ago
  • Targeted support for young people
    Recently allocated Ministry of Youth Development funding will support more than 6700 young people to receive targeted youth development support to remain in education or transition to further training or employment and improve their wellbeing, Youth Minister Matt Doocey says.  Funding of $10.69 million will be allocated to 34 community-based ...
    4 days ago
  • Reshaping the health system to bring Māori health closer to home
    Legislation that will disestablish the Māori Health Authority will be introduced in Parliament today, heralding the start of a new vision for Māori health says Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti.  “We have said we will bring healthcare for all New Zealanders closer to the home and closer to the ...
    4 days ago
  • Speech to the Wellington Chamber of Commerce
    Acknowledgements Good morning. Can I start by acknowledging Simon and the team at the Chamber. Thanks for the invitation to be here today. Introduction In October last year New Zealanders voted for change. The Coalition government was elected with a clear mandate to rebuild the economy and reduce the cost ...
    5 days ago
  • NZ welcomes Australia and Brazil to agreements
    New Zealand has welcomed Australia to the Inclusive Trade Action Group (ITAG) and Australia and Brazil to the Global Trade and Gender Arrangement (GTAGA) Minister for Trade Todd McClay says.  As the current chair of ITAG and GTAGA, Minister McClay hosted the signing ceremony and issued the Abu Dhabi Joint ...
    5 days ago
  • Inquiry announced into school property
    The Government will conduct a Ministerial Inquiry to address problems with the school property system where the scope of property works planned was unrealistic and unaffordable. “The coalition Government has inherited a school property system bordering on crisis,” Education Minister Erica Stanford says. “There have been a number of cost escalations ...
    5 days ago
  • New Chair for Guardians of NZ Superannuation
    Company director and investor John Williamson has been appointed as the new Chair of the Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation, the Crown entity that oversees the NZ Super Fund and the Elevate NZ Venture Capital Fund, Finance Minister Nicola Willis announced today.  Mr Williamson will take up his new position ...
    5 days ago
  • Northland open for business as critical works to repair SH1 Brynderwyn Hills begin
    The Government is encouraging New Zealanders to support, visit, and explore Northland, as the closure and detour of SH1 at the Bryderwyn Hills begins, and critical repair work by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) gets underway, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Many regions across the country suffered extensive and devastating ...
    5 days ago
  • Government backs police to crackdown on gangs
    The coalition Government is restoring law and order by providing police new tools to crack down on criminal gangs, says Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Police Minister Mark Mitchell.  “Over the last five years gangs have recruited more than 3000 members, a 51 per cent increase. At the same time, ...
    6 days ago
  • Northland’s new Kāeo Bridge officially open
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed the official opening of the new State Highway 10 (SH10) Kāeo Bridge, which will improve safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Far North. “This is an important piece of infrastructure for the Northland region that will help members of ...
    1 week ago
  • Government grants $6.6 million to clean up old landfill sites
    The Government has granted $6.6 million to clean up four historic New Zealand landfill and dump sites vulnerable to extreme weather events and coastal erosion. At the BlueGreens Forum in Paihia today Environment Minister Penny Simmonds said that the Contaminated Sites Remediation Fund grants will go towards fixing former landfills ...
    1 week ago
  • Dry weather triggers extra support for farmers and growers across the top of the South Island
    The coalition Government is providing support for farmers and growers as dry conditions worsen across the top of the South Island. “Conditions on the ground across the Marlborough, Tasman, and Nelson districts are now extremely dry and likely to get worse in the coming months,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said. ...
    1 week ago
  • Trade Minister heads to Abu Dhabi for key WTO negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay travels to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates for the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) today, to take up his role as Vice Chair of the negotiations. The Ministerial Conference is the highest decision-making body within the WTO and meets every ...
    1 week ago
  • Appointment round for King’s Counsel announced
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced an appointment round for King’s Counsel will take place in 2024. Appointments of King’s Counsel are made by the Governor-General on the recommendation of the Attorney-General and with the concurrence of the Chief Justice. The Governor-General retains the discretion to appoint King’s Counsel in recognition ...
    1 week ago
  • Retiring Chief of Navy thanked for his service
    Defence Minister Judith Collins has thanked the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Proctor, for his service as he retires from the Royal New Zealand Navy after 37 years. Rear Admiral Proctor will retire on 16 May to take up an employment opportunity in Australia.  “I would like to thank ...
    1 week ago
  • Indonesian Vice President to visit New Zealand
    Indonesia’s Vice President Ma’ruf Amin will visit New Zealand next week, the first here by an Indonesian leader since 2018, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters has announced. “New Zealand and Indonesia have a strong partnership,” Mr Peters says.  “The Vice President’s visit is an opportunity to discuss how we can strengthen ...
    1 week ago
  • Government boost to fight against caulerpa
    The battle to contain the fast-spreading exotic caulerpa seaweed has today received a $5 million boost to accelerate the development of removal techniques, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The time is now to really lean in and build on the work of Biosecurity New Zealand, mana whenua, communities and local ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister attending Australian data, digital meeting
    Minister for Digitising Government Judith Collins is in Sydney to attend the first Data and Digital Ministers’ Meeting of 2024.  “This is a great opportunity to connect with our Australian counterparts and identify how we can work together on digital transformation,” Ms Collins says.   “Both our nations are looking into ...
    1 week ago
  • Appointments to Antarctica New Zealand Board
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has appointed Leon Grice and Heather Simpson to serve on the Antarctica New Zealand board.  “Since taking office, the Coalition Government has become concerned about the direction of the Scott Base Redevelopment Project,” Mr Peters says.  “It is vital that Antarctica New Zealand has the right ...
    1 week ago
  • Strengthening the Single Economic Market
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis has met with Australian Treasurer Jim Chalmers to discuss the opportunities to lower business costs and increase the ease with which businesses and people can operate across the Tasman.     “I have met with Treasurer Chalmers and shared our new Government’s ambitious economic goals, our plans ...
    1 week ago
  • Government to address business payment practices
    The Government will repeal the Business Payment Practices Act 2023, Small Business and Manufacturing Minister Andrew Bayly announced today. “There is a major problem with large market players imposing long payment terms and routinely paying invoices late. “However, the Business Payment Practices Act is not an effective solution and would ...
    1 week ago
  • Greater focus on work will reduce child poverty
    Worsening child poverty rates support the Coalition Government’s focus on reducing the cost of living and getting people into work, Child Poverty Reduction Minister Louise Upston says. Figures released by Stats NZ today show child poverty rates have increased, with the rising cost of living, driven by inflation, making it ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ announces new support for Ukraine
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have marked two years since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by announcing further support and sanctions, and extending our military assistance. “Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter,” Mr Peters says. ...
    1 week ago

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