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“Our Plan to Change the Government”

Written By: - Date published: 11:07 pm, June 3rd, 2016 - 277 comments
Categories: Andrew Little, Environment, greens, james shaw, labour, Metiria Turei - Tags: ,

The Green Party AGM and Conference is on this weekend.

Saturday 4 June
•    1.15pm Keynote speech by Labour Party leader Andrew Little
•    Streaming live from the Green Party Facebook page
•    Keynote speech by Green Party Co-leader James Shaw
•    Joint media stand-up

“We have 18 months to change the government and we will make use of every single day of those 18 months,” said Mr Shaw.

“This is an exciting time to be part of the Green Party. We’re coming into this AGM with real momentum from our recent state houses and freight policy launches, and, of course, the signing of our historic agreement with Labour.

“We’ve been putting the foundations in place – renewed leadership, talking about the issues that matter to New Zealand, and with this week’s announcement, a clear movement to change the government.”

Sunday 5 June
•    1pm Launch of a centrepiece environmental campaign by Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei
•    photo-op and media stand-up

“The Government thinks the environment is there to make a fast buck,”

“Look at the situation with freshwater: John Key says that most of our water just runs out to sea, when in fact it sustains native species and ecosystems, as well as communities who swim in and gather food from rivers.

“But because those things don’t make export dollars, the National Government doesn’t see any value in them, and our environment suffers.

“We are excited to be launching a new campaign that will bring New Zealanders together and fight for our beautiful outdoor spaces,”

Lincoln Events Centre, 15 Meijer Drive, Lincoln, Canterbury

Press Release


Memorandum of Understanding

Background to “Our Plan to Change the Government”

Update: James Shaw and Andrew Little on The Nation 



277 comments on ““Our Plan to Change the Government””

  1. Sans Cle 1

    Exciting times indeed. Simple positive message – we NEED a change of government.

    • Jenny 1.1

      We need to change more than the government.

      Changing the government just for the sake of it, is not enough.

      All parties need to start facing up to the climate crisis.

      I find it depressing that the Green Party in its press statement has again reverted to mentioning only it’s campaign for clean rivers. And leaves out all mention of climate change which is a way bigger problem.

      “Look at the situation with freshwater: John Key says that most of our water just runs out to sea, when in fact it sustains native species and ecosystems, as well as communities who swim in and gather food from rivers.

      “But because those things don’t make export dollars, the National Government doesn’t see any value in them, and our environment suffers.

      “We are excited to be launching a new campaign that will bring New Zealanders together and fight for our beautiful outdoor spaces,”
      James Shaw

      pre-conference press release

      Taking care of our waterways is important and should not be neglected, but this should not be used as an excuse to ignore climate change.

      I look forward to seeing what the leader of the Labour Party Andrew Little and the Green Party co-leader James Shaw have to say about climate change in their key note speeches on Saturday.

      Will for instance Andrew Little announce that the Labour Party will drop their support for deep sea oil drilling and other unconventional extreme fossil fuel technologies like fracking?
      Which are a major stumbling block preventing a strategic alliance between the Labour Party and the Green Party.

      I also look forward to Meteria Turei’s Launch of the Green Party centrepiece environmental campaign, I hope that this speech is a turning point and that climate change is it’s main central theme and not some added afterthought to some other important but lessor environmental problem.

      On these matters will hinge our understanding of the nature of the new MoU.

      Business as Usual, where another election goes by where no party seeks a mandate to tackle climate change, or a joint combined Green Labour Party commitment to face up to the biggest crisis humanity has ever faced.

      • Bill 1.1.1

        Can’t say I disagree with you Jenny.

      • weka 1.1.2

        “Will for instance Andrew Little announce that the Labour Party will drop their support for deep sea oil drilling and other unconventional extreme fossil fuel technologies like fracking?
        Which are a major stumbling block preventing a strategic alliance between the Labour Party and the Green Party.”

        This isn’t a coalition deal. It’s an agreement to work together to over the next 18 months to change the govt. Election campaigning, and coalition deals will happen at the election time. I agree the issues you raise are very important, but I would ask you to consider this. How could the Labour party as a whole adopt Green policy across the board? I just can’t see how it could happen, given the party is made up of members, activists, staff, MPs etc, who are overall environmentally more conservative than you and I. Do you suggest that Little impose policy on the party?

        I don’t see any single policy as being a stumbling block preventing an alliance. What I expect from the Greens and hope from Labour is that they will develop a new way of working together and then forming a coalition govt, that isn’t centred on ideas around conflict and difference, but is instead focusses on co-operation and diversity. Think party political intersectionality. We don’t have to agree on everything (or even everything major). We do have to learn how to work together even where we disagree. To my mind that’s as important as the overt purpose of changing the govt.

        • Macro

          Totally agree weka. For Policy Geeks – this position or that position on an issue is very important – but for the majority it is the perception that is the important thing. Look how many still vote for a “Brighter Future” 🙁
          Are you going to the AGM? If so say “Hi” to the Coromandel delegates for me.

        • Enough is Enough

          The problem with that approach Weka is the Nats and the media will focus on those differences. Highlight them and say that is the reason why they will not be a stable government.

          Just think the row boat ad from the last election.

          We need a strong strategy to counter that

          • leftie

            The MOU gets rid of National’s “the opposition is rowing in all different directions.” Did you notice in National’s row boat, everyone was rowing backwards, except 1?

            • Enough is Enough

              The MOU is a document, nothing more nothing less.

              Our political opponents and the corporate media will focus on the differences in policy and use that as an attack campaign against the progressive coalition.

              I don’t think saying “but we have an MOU” is really the strategy to defeat those attacks

              • leftie

                I never said it was Enough, you brought up the Ad, my comment was in relation to that. Labour and the Greens think the MOU is more than just a “document,” Metiria in her speech spoke of what she felt was its historical significance, uniqueness and symbolically being extremely important.

                “Our political opponents and the corporate media will focus on the differences in policy and use that as an attack campaign against the progressive coalition.”

                The opponents will do that anyway regardless, it’s up to the now united coalition to counter that.

          • weka

            “The problem with that approach Weka is the Nats and the media will focus on those differences. Highlight them and say that is the reason why they will not be a stable government.”

            Enough, I reckon National and the media will focus on whatever negative shit they can dream up no matter what L/G do, sot it’s kind of a moot point. Time to stop being afraid of Dirty Politics and media bias and do the right thing because it’s the right thing. L/G can still be canny, and I agree a strong counter is needed.

            Truth and being real has its own power. I noticed Shaw made no bones of the fact that they are up against a formidable enemy in the NACT trashing machine.

        • lprent

          …that isn’t centred on ideas around conflict and difference, but is instead focusses on co-operation and diversity.

          A bit like this place. People are different, work for things that are different, and expect to disagree. The cooperate where they have common interests.

          And weka, welcome to the wonderful and painful world of being an author 🙂 (That was a pleasant surprise this morning (and a nice birthday present) ).

        • Jenny

          “Will for instance Andrew Little announce that the Labour Party will drop their support for deep sea oil drilling and other unconventional extreme fossil fuel technologies like fracking?
          Which are a major stumbling block preventing a strategic alliance between the Labour Party and the Green Party.”

          I agree the issues you raise are very important, but I would ask you to consider this. How could the Labour party as a whole adopt Green policy across the board?

          Why is support for deep sea oil drilling such a hard thing for the Labour leadership to give up?

          Especially as it would be a symbol of Labour’s decision to take climate change seriously?

          For Labour to not take this simple practical step, is a symptom of a deeper reluctance to face up to the climate crisis, and in particular, a reluctance by Labour to stand up to the corporate fossil fuel lobby.

          Further Weka, I think your positing the question, “How could the Labour Party as a whole adopt Green Party policy across the board?” is a red hearing.

          First of all, I never suggested anywhere, that the Labour Party as a whole adopt Green Party policy across the board.

          Secondly, leaders often “impose” as you label it, “policy on the party”. It is what is called leadership.

          In fact I would say that the opposite is the case in this matter. Labour’s leadership have “imposed” deep sea oil drilling on their membership.

          Thirdly, I would be more than happy if the Labour leadership polled and discussed this issue with their members, Like the rest of the population, I think that they would find a majority of Labour Party members are also opposed to deep sea oil drilling.

          I don’t see any single policy as being a stumbling block preventing an alliance.

          Respectfully weka I disagree, I think you are being wilfully blind. Sweeping this difference under the table will not make it go away.

          Continued government support for deep sea oil drilling will be a stumbling block to forming a proper strategic alliance or even a coalition government with the Green Party. Because, unless this difference is sorted out, the Green Party can never go into cabinet with the Labour Party where they will be out voted yet have to abide by cabinet collective responsibility.
          Because the Green Party are opposed, and will stay opposed to deep sea oil drilling even if the leadership are bound to support this government policy under the binding rules of collective cabinet responsibility.
          This will obviously put the Green Party leadership at odds with their membership.
          Either Labour drop their support for deep sea oil drilling or the Greens agree to support Labour outside of cabinet. There is no middle ground.


          • Sacha

            “it would be a symbol of Labour’s decision to take climate change seriously?”

            It would immediately be attacked by the Nats as being against jobs. That’s central to Labour’s brand.

            I presume the Greens aren’t leading with it because their research/strategy work has shown them that focusing on simpler things like jobs, kids and rivers opens the door to support. They have been talking about green jobs and a green economy for years – which is another way of saying what we need to do to tackle climate change.

            Yes, it’s important but voters will not support any party which presents it that way. The Greens election billboards last election were dire compared with the previous one, for instance. They were lucky not to lose any votes.

            • Macro

              es, it’s important but voters will not support any party which presents it that way. The Greens election billboards last election were dire compared with the previous one, for instance. They were lucky not to lose any votes.

              This has been taken on board and I understand that that sort of billboard will not feature next time.

            • weka

              that’s how I see it too. CC is critical, they name it as the most important issue of all time, and then they get on with all the things that need to be done in order to mitigate and prepare for CC, including fairly regularly talking about CC but without ramming it down people’s throats or going hard and scaring people.

              I think it’s the job of the non-parlimentary left to lead the way loudly on CC change. Then the politicians can get in behind.

            • Jenny

              “it [stopping deep sea oil] would be a symbol of Labour’s decision to take climate change seriously?”

              “It would immediately be attacked by the Nats as being against jobs. That’s central to Labour’s brand.”

              What jobs? Sacha.

              There are no jobs in it. All the deep sea drill rigs are operated by overseas crews, all the oil is collected and refined off shore,

              There may be some jobs in the grocery run to the rigs for New Zealand operated coastal vessels. But that is it.

              There are no jobs in it, there are no votes in it. Yet the Labour leadership persist in supporting deep sea oil drilling.
              Which indicates that like National Labour are not serious about combating climate change.

              • Sacha

                We know there are no jobs, but that’s not what voters have heard for years thanks to a lying government, a feeble opposition and a compliant media. Same with construction – few jobs per dollar compared with many other industries. Lots of big expensive machines instead.

      • Dialey 1.1.3

        Climate change is too big a subject for the politically unmotivated, and too tainted by the deniers and sceptics. But dirty rivers is something that resonates with pretty much every NZer. Digestible chunks is a wiser way to feed policy to the public, especially when it is going to involve a (hopefully) radical change of direction

        • Jenny

          Most New Zealanders live in cities, Hamilton, Christchurch and Wanganui are the only major metropolitan areas with rivers in them. Personally I don’t know of any urban voters interested in swimming in any of them, no matter how clean they were. They are generally cold and dangerous places to swim at the best of times.

          Does nobody see the disconnect here?

          I am a strong swimmer. But I could count the number of times I have ever swum in a river on one hand.

          Look don’t get me wrong I think pollution free rivers would be a good thing.

          But I don’t see this issue as a major vote winner, especially for urban voters who hardly ever see a river.

          (Except on TV and mostly on the news when one floods.)

      • Katipo 1.1.4

        Jeny: if you are depressed by the green partys lack of mentioning climate change in its press statements, you surely must be suicidal at the thought if the National party winning the next election.

        • Jenny

          “Jeny: if you are depressed by the green partys lack of mentioning climate change in its press statements, you surely must be suicidal at the thought if the National party winning the next election.”

          Indeed I am very depressed at this increasingly likely prospect, especially when the issue that National are weakest, and can be easily shown to be wanting on, is virtually being ignored, by the Green Party.

          If the Green Party are not prepared to take the threat of climate change seriously, how could we possibly expect the Labour Party to?

          Andrew Little’s speech to the Green Party conference had more direct references to climate change than both the Green Party leaders combined. And he even promised policy relating to climate change.** Something neither James Shaw, nor Meteria Turei did.

          In my opinion Andrew Little would have come away bemused and surprised, and quizzical, at the level of climate change ignoring inside the Green Party leadership.

          As a result Andrew LIttle is probably seriously reconsidering his stronger position on climate change.

          **(“The government I lead will make our country a leader in the fight against climate change.”
          Andrew Little.
          Compared of course to John Key’s, “New Zealand will be a fast follower on climate change.” Which in practice, has proved to be an excuse to permit a huge increase in green house gas emissions that cause climate change.)

    • Enough is Enough 1.2

      People like Damian O’Connor and Stuart Nash need to be shown the door this year if they don’t come out and support this MOU 100%.

      There must be consequences for those who do not want to go into government with the Green Party

      • Chris 1.2.1

        And Grant Robertson will say he supports it but undermine it behind the scenes so he needs to go, too.

        • dukeofurl

          Greens could stop dictating who is a member of the broadchurch labour Mps.

          remember children your are only representing 10% of the people who voted

        • leftie

          Citation please Chris, otherwise you are just shitstirring for the sake of it.

          • Chris

            Robertson’s track record.

            • leftie

              Not good enough Chris, since Roberston’s track record has been good since Andrew Little became leader.

              • Chris

                We don’t really know that yet. Still too early. Let’s wait to see if Robertson fucks Little over the same way he did Cunliffe before the election. Robertson’s got a right-wing streak in him that he can’t completely hide. I personally think he’s not to be trusted. An election looming is when we’ll see what’s going on.

                • leftie

                  I wouldnt hold my breath if I was you Chris, I don’t think that’s going to happen.

              • DoublePlusGood

                Someone has still been leaking. Who is it then?

            • Ffloyd

              Chris. What a load of unsubstantiated bollocks. Just your wishful thinking.

              • leftie

                Agree with you Ffloyd, I thought the same.

              • Chris

                I don’t wish for that to happen at all. I want this government gone as much as anyone. But there’s nothing in Labour’s current track record that says they’ve changed. I hope recent events is a signal of change but I’m not going to dance around with the same naive Labour-can-do-no-wrong attitude as the likes of you and leftie. It’s the same uncritical support that’s allowed Labour to get away with so much over recent years. That total collusion can never be forgiven. The only wishful thinking on my part is hope that Labour will change.

                • leftie

                  That’s just your opinion
                  Chris, it doesn’t mean others have to be so inflexible like that too, and its not a matter of “uncritical support” and “Labour can do no wrong” there is no such thing as a “perfect” political party, sure criticize when it’s called for, but there’s a big difference between constructive criticism and hatefest mud slinging and shitstirring. I have read your posts, you seem to favour the latter, making unsubstantiated digs just for the sake of it. I find beatups unconstructive and counter productive. You hate Labour, I get that, but Labour is not the only party, where are your posts on the party you do support to broaden the discussion on getting rid of this government?

      • leftie 1.2.2

        I find you contradictory Enough. I thought you said the MOU was just a “document”? You implied in another post that it didn’t mean anything. Now you want to take the whip out to those you think are not being serious enough about it? I’m sure if anyone refuses to follow party lines whether they be Labour or Green, there is the door. Cosgrove found that out.

        • Chris

          There’s no contradiction in what EIE’s saying at all. The MOU is just a document that can end up meaning nothing, but if both parties respect it and see it as representing a shared vision and a joint effort to oust this nasty and destructive government then it may well end up being a very useful document indeed.

          • leftie

            Agree with the later part of your post Chris, but you obviously didn’t read Enough’s other comment, he has been rather contradictory.

            • Chris

              I’ve just explained why it wasn’t contradictory. Pinpoint where in EIS’s statement you’re referring to.

      • maninthemiddle 1.2.3

        No room for dissent on the left eh?

        • leftie

          Are you implying that there is no dissent on the right Maninthemiddle?

          • maninthemiddle

            No. I’m simply observing the lack of appetite for it on the left, based on some of the comments above. The right encourages dissent. The left has a filthy history of suppressing it.

            [If you make assertions here you have to be able to back them up. You can get away with a certain amount of rudeness if you make a political point. You’re sailing close to the wind in your comments in this thread. Please read the Policy at the top of the page for commenting guidelines, and up your game] – weka

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Augusto Pinochet. Your “observations” are a steaming pile of dogshit.

              • leftie

                That it is OAB. Why is it that the right always accuse the left of what the right always do?

              • maninthemiddle

                Oh the right isn’t immune either, OAB. I just haven’t seen any right wingers here telling National Party dissidents to be ‘shown the door’.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Yes, because thinking that someone’s political beliefs are incompatible with the NZLP is exactly the same as a Stalinist purge.

                  Meanwhile, you are apparently blissfully unaware of Blabbermouth Lusk’s strategy regarding National Party MPs who refuse to follow orders.

                  That’s hardly surprising, since you’re an ignorant self-aggrandising gimp.

                  • maninthemiddle

                    “…you are apparently blissfully unaware of Blabbermouth Lusk’s strategy regarding National Party MPs who refuse to follow orders.”

                    Oh my goodness really? The Simon Lusk who is a campaign strategist? Call the police!!

                    If you think there is no place for healthy debate in the National Party you know nothing. Actually there is healthy debate inside the Labour Party as well. Or at least there was.

            • maninthemiddle

              So you want evidence of the left suppressing free speech? Cuba. The Soviet Union. China. How many do you want?

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Gosh, there are authoritarians in China? Who knew!

                Meanwhile, in New Zealand, Cameron Slater handles the National Party’s ratfucking program against anyone who speaks out, and that makes you a rank hypocrite.

                Explain why people shouldn’t simply spit on you in the street. trash.

                • maninthemiddle

                  Are you seriously suggesting Cameron Slater holds that much power? You’re seriously deluded.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Forgive me: simple metaphors can be so complicated to the challenged.

                    On the other hand, you are commenting on NZ politics and yet seem utterly ignorant on your chosen subject. Some headlines to “refresh” “your” “memory”:

                    Community groups ‘fear speaking out’

                    Feeling the freedom to speak out

                    Scientists gagged by funding fears, says professor

                    Are you so stupid you think people here are going to believe the lies you tell yourself?

                    • maninthemiddle

                      And these relate to Cameron Slater how?

                      I take your point on the last one though. Scientists who question the IPCC (manufactured) consensus on climate change are in serious trouble. References would also be nice. Typing in italics doesn’t make you a big boy OAB.

                    • leftie

                      Don’t be so selective, you should take his point on all the references quoted. BTW dictatorial governments such as John key’s, gagging, silencing and removing scientists that question it, is not a new concept Maninthemiddle, and typing in italics was used to highlight the headlines and had nothing to do with making OAB a ‘big boy” That was another stupid thing you said.

                  • leftie

                    Key and Collin’s close buddy most certainly thought he did Maninthemiddle, and you’re seriously in denial.

                    • maninthemiddle

                      No, he didn’t. He knows stuff. Just like Martyn Bradbury. Just like Lynn Prentice. It makes fascinating reading, but Slater wields no more power than either, and the efts obsession with him is nearly as weird as their obsession with john Key.

                    • leftie

                      Oh yes he did!!! And Slater’s close personal relationship with John key and Judith Collins et al is nothing like the political observations of political commentators like Martyn Bradbury and Lynn Prentice.

                      rofl, you are so in denial Maninthemiddle.

                    • maninthemiddle

                      “And Slater’s close personal relationship with John key and Judith Collins et al is nothing like the political observations of political commentators like Martyn Bradbury and Lynn Prentice.”

                      So? What does that have to do with what power they wield? Stick with the point. These are bloggers not gods.

                    • leftie

                      Are you serious? I did stick to the point !! You are deluded and in denial Maninthemiddle.

                    • maninthemiddle

                      “I did stick to the point !!”

                      No you didn’t. The point is what power Slater et al yield. Having John Key’s cell phone number provides Slater with no more power than Martyn Bradbury speaking at an Alliance conference.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke


      • b waghorn 1.2.4

        If the greens want to stop mining on the west coast (yes I know coals got to go)they need to offer a compromise. Sustainable logging with all timber processed on the coast might work.

        • Sacha

          “If the greens want to stop mining on the west coast”

          do you have link to that?

          • b waghorn

            “People like Damian O’Connor and Stuart Nash need to be shown the door this year if they don’t come out and support this MOU 100%.”

            I was responding to the call for O’Connor to go , I saw one of the news reporters playing on the O’Connor vs the Greens angle the day after mou. Now I may have made a wrong assumption about the the greens on coal although I doubt it

            • weka

              Back in the day Rod Donald’s idea was that West Coast coal should be mined from existing mines and used for the West Coast economy eg running tourism trains. I don’t know that he could propose that now were he around, but it does indicate that the Greens have been thinking about this for a long time and don’t consider throwing coasters’ jobs under the bus to be a good thing, nor that jobs are incompatible with environmental protection.

              I do agree it would be good to see more public work on what they think now (although sustainable logging only works in some situations, processing and using on the Coast would be great).

              The Greens have opposed certain kinds of mining eg mining in National Parks.

              Here’s the bit from the environmental policy,

              A. Legislative Framework

              The Green Party will:

              Strengthen the RMA decision making framework (e.g. through revised National Policy Statement on Biodiversity) to ensure ecological, cultural and landscape values, and water quality are better protected when councils consider resource consent applications for mining; and require decision makers to consider the greenhouse gas contribution of mining activities and downstream effects when considering resource consent applications.

              Revise the RMA and EEZCS legislation to stipulate that mining in New Zealand only happens for material which serves a socially useful purpose, for which renewable materials are not available, and when mining is the best means of obtaining the material.

              B. Maximising Benefit and Minimising Harm

              The Green Party will:

              Implement a royalties and tax regime that would at least be equal to the OECD average for Government take (royalties plus taxes) to ensure that New Zealand is getting fair compensation for the exploitation of our petroleum and mineral resources (see Energy policy).

              Require bonds and/or minimum insurance requirements for “worst case scenario” pollution events to minimise the risk that the taxpayer has to pay clean-up costs when mining operations cause pollution.

              C. Gold and Silver

              The Green Party will:

              Allow gold/silver mining (other than industrial scale hard-rock mining) under a strengthened RMA, such as alluvial gold mining subject to strict protection for rivers.

              Prohibit industrial scale hard-rock gold/silver mining

              D. Ironsand Mining

              The Green Party will:

              Allow existing onshore ironsand mining under a strengthened RMA.

              Take a precautionary approach to new onshore ironsand mining, and require explicit consent from manawhenua hapū.

              Strengthen the RMA and Historic Places Act to give hapū the ability to protect areas of the coastline having historical, archaeological and/or cultural significance from iron sand mining.

              E. Other Socially Useful Minerals

              The Green Party will:

              Allow aggregate mining/quarrying under a strengthened RMA.

              Allow land-based phosphate mining under a strengthened RMA.

              Allow land-based silica mining under a strengthened RMA.

              F. Other Forms of Mining

              Any type of mining not specified in Green Party policy will be considered on a case by case basis (also see Energy, Conservation and Sea and Oceans policies).


      • fisiani 1.2.5

        I’m not so sure that monolithic purity of thought is desirable in a political party. This New Zealand not North Korea. Should the first person to stop clapping after Andrew Little’s speech be seen as a traitor.

        • Draco T Bastard

          I’m not so sure that monolithic purity of thought is desirable in a political party.

          You only say that because you’re preferred party has no purity of thought. It’s all totally corrupt.

      • Stuart Nash 1.2.6

        Interesting comment. Are you really calling for the sacking of the only two Labour caucus members to actually win a seat off the Nats since Parker in 2002 (but take this aberration out and then Damien and I are the only two this century)?

    • AmaKiwi 1.3

      “Change the Government” was Kim Dotcom’s party’s theme last time around.

      • Pat 1.3.1

        am guessing you don’t think we need a change?

        • AmaKiwi

          @ Pat

          Wrong assumption. If you read my comments here you KNOW I think more than just “change.” The entire economic and political system needs a transformation from the ground up.

          During the last election I knew this was a much better slogan than whatever forgettable slogan Labour was using. So I bought a red baseball cap, had the Labour logo sewn on, and under the Labour logo had “Change the Government” sewn on.

          I paid $20 to have a descent slogan for Labour last election. I’m particular about what I advertise on my clothing.

  2. Wonderpup 2

    Doing this at Lincoln is very cool. As a combined research and teaching ‘hub’ it could become a powerhouse for sustainable agriculture. I was privileged to work there for a while last year, and was amazed at what was going on. Some management issues, sure, but the staff and students are totally committed.

    Gummies on! There’s work to do!

    • weka 2.1

      Thanks Wonderpup, I hadn’t considered the relevance of it being at Lincoln.

  3. Should be an interesting couple of speeches. I’ll be keen to see how Andrew Little is received at the conference. Warmly, I suspect!

    And, a quick shout out to weka, the newest addition to the author’s pool at TS. Another unique voice on the roster at NZ’s best political blog.

    • weka 3.1

      thanks trp 🙂

    • Jenny 3.2

      I’ll be keen to see how Andrew Little is received at the conference. Warmly, I suspect!
      te reo putake

      And you suspected right! Andrew Little was received very warmly indeed. James Shaws’s welcome was effusive as it was genuine. And at the risk of offending some, I thought the applause for Little was more enthusiastic than for Shaw.

  4. “Lincoln green is the colour of dyed woollen cloth associated with Robin Hood and his merry men in Sherwood Forest”.

    • Gabby 4.1

      ‘The Avro Lincoln was a heavy bomber that played a role in the UK’s atom bomb programme.’

      • Abe Lincoln abolished slavery in America (temporarily, it turns out).
        Seems Lincoln was a good choice for the Green AGM, given all these auspicious connections 🙂

    • Doogs 4.2

      Lincoln Road in West Auckland is designated the country’s busiest urban street.

  5. lurgee 5

    Plan for changing the government = get more votes.

    Not sure if a marriage of convenience between Labour and the Greens will do that. Who will vote for the combination that isn’t already voting for one or the other?

    I don’t see how it will disincentivize National current National voters from repeating their folly. If they didn’t vote Labour in 2015, will they suddenly feel the urge to do so because they get the Greens as well?

    Nor will it spur the (largely mythical) missing million into voting.

    The best it might do is make it look like they are thinking seriously about how to get into power, and sorting stuff out in advance so they look a bit like a ‘government-in-waiting.’ But I think this deal terminates after the election, so even that is tenuous.

    Sorry to sound dour, but I don’t see this delivering much. Though i would like to be wrong.

    • weka 5.1

      tbh, I don’t think this is about getting votes (that will happen in the election campaign). I think it’s about spending the next 18 months changing the narrative and presenting alternatives to National. One is presenting Labour and the Greens as competent enough to manage the country. Another is saying so many of us are angry about what has happened to NZ, here are some alternatives, we don’t just have to keep doing the same thing.

    • swordfish 5.2

      Post-Election research by Labour’s Pollster UMR suggested quite a few potential swing voters – who ultimately went with National – felt there was no cohesive, viable alternative Government. They needed a clear signal that there was a stable Govt-in-waiting on offer.

      Pretty sure the New Zealand Election Study found similar … and it was a familiar theme backed up by a lot of anecdotal evidence from Labour and Green activists during the campaign.

      • Macro 5.2.1

        Yes this was the (admittedly anecdotal) perception of many who door knocked and stood on street sides with campaign policy pamphlets etc.
        A govt in waiting with a more humane face and background of care for the environment may just be the appeal that brings votes back from apathy.

      • lurgee 5.2.2

        Are my branes right that the agreement is effectively only until the election, and then they start from scratch after that? Because if so, it will be hard to make it look like a new government being forged.

        • weka

          I think there is quite a bit of misunderstanding about what the MoU is. It’s not a coalition agreement. They’re saying that voters will decide and any coalition formation will happen after the election. The MoU is pretty clear what they will do between now and then. I don’t read it as starting from scratch at the election because the whole point is relationship building and that will long outlive the piece of paper.

          • lurgee

            I think the reality is that they are both going to be in thrall to Winston the day after the election.

            If they are lucky.

            And he’s going to drive a tough bargain.

            • weka

              Peters might hold the balance of power, but Labour and the Greens still have choices in how they respond to that. Time to stop being beholden to the idea that Peters is in charge. It’s unhealthy.

              • Grantoc

                But its likely to be reality.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Who to believe?

                  The wingnut trolls who say Winston is at death’s door, or the wingnut trolls who say he’ll be bought the moment the National Party’s owners open their trust funds?

                  Maybe, just maybe, wingnut trolls have no more clue about Winston than they do of science, or culture, or competence.

    • b waghorn 5.3

      “Sorry to sound dour, but I don’t see this delivering much. Though i would like to be wrong.”

      Well you could try being positive and helping get them over the line ,in what ever method that suits you.

    • Doogs 5.4

      I know what you mean, and there’s an element of truth in what you say. Joe Public doesn’t have a long attention span, doesn’t think deeply about issues and is susceptible to sound bites that appear to have value. The Nactzis are past masters at the slick and “meaningful” slogan, full of sound and fury but signifying nothing. This is where they hook in the zombies who hear nothing but the literal meaning.

      The policy on clean rivers is good because it uses the drip feed method of getting messages across. Climate change is in Joe Public’s too hard basket. How they tackle that is an after-we-are-elected issue.

      Not sure how we get JP to extend his/her brain on the real issues. TV a big contributor to the lack of attention span Also, among the ones who are scrabbling to exist, the next meal has far more importance than clean rivers.

  6. weka 6

    Watching The Nation with Little and Turei. This is an important point. The MOU/co-operation is to change the government. Lisa Owen wants to know what the govt will look like, but it’s not possible to know that at this stage. What Labour and the GP can do right now, is campaign together to change the govt. That’s a vital act in and of itself. The voters will decide, and then the parties can get together and look at what the govt should be.

    Trying to pin down Labour and the Greens to all the coalition detail now is old school, macho politics that doesn’t serve NZ. Yes, ask the questions, but be prepared for answers that don’t fit neatly into the box you have prepared. L/G don’t control NZF, nor each other, but are open to all of them being part of the change the govt strategy.

    As a GP voter, I’m actually ok with Labour and the Greens working together now even if that doesn’t mean that the Greens end up in govt. I want the govt changed and I want the Greens to be a core part how that happens. And it would be a huge lost opportunity if the Greens weren’t in govt. But we have to remember that we need change more than we need power. The Greens have always been about getting us to do politics differently. This is what the relationship with Labour is about.

    • Olwyn 6.1

      I wholeheartedly agree Weka. A straightforward plan to change the government works on so many levels – once that is established, you have a basis upon which to work out the details. And it at once reduces Key’s room to move and calls the key players in both parties to discipline and focus.

    • Rosie 6.2

      Well said weka.

      Thanks for your post too.

      I am feeling positive and energised for the first time in many years. I’m deeply impressed that The Green Party and NZLP have sought to do the right thing together, ego’s aside. It’s beyond the usual silo thinking politics, the agreed goal is good sound governance of a nation. Good ethics combined with a powerful social justice motivation make for a real opportunity to challenge the current govt.

      A big bold move.

      Kia Kaha!

    • lprent 6.3

      The voters will decide, and then the parties can get together and look at what the govt should be.

      That is the main point. The MOU is to work together up til the election. Then after the election, it depends on what the voters have decided and given the various parties in their hand.

      However the process of parties working together should make forming a new government a whole lot easier.

    • Ad 6.4

      Very gracious and non-partisan there Weka.

    • leftie 6.5

      Awesome commentary Weka, thoroughly enjoyed reading them all !! Thank you.

    • maninthemiddle 6.6

      “The MOU/co-operation is to change the government. Lisa Owen wants to know what the govt will look like, but it’s not possible to know that at this stage.”

      So, let me get this straight. The LabGreens are coexisting for no other reason than a negative one. Ok. So then they are going to ask us to vote for something they are not prepared to define or describe in any detail. Get stuffed.

      • weka 6.6.1

        “The LabGreens are coexisting for no other reason than a negative one.”

        No. Have you listened to anything they’ve said? Read the speeches?

        • maninthemiddle

          Yep. The only meme is ‘change the government’. It’s pathetic.

          • weka

            So you didn’t hear anything else. Shame.

            • maninthemiddle

              Because there wasn’t anything else. Little refused to answer any half decent questions by simply talking over Owen. Key will make an absolute meal of Little if he remains the leader for the election campaign.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                “Making a meal” of something means making a task more difficult, and the reason you didn’t know that is that you have a typical right winger’s level of literacy and understanding of the culture you grew up in.

                And your breath smells of dogshit.

              • whispering kate

                And the Pm gives a straight answer or even gives an answer – its worse he just out and out lies – give us a break maninthemiddle. You need to get your hearing checked and your eyes as well – study the man – he is hollow and doesn’t blink – if you can understand that which I don’t think you will -because you are asleep and haven’t a clue.

                • maninthemiddle

                  That’s the mantra, but not the reality. Key is a politician, a brilliant one at that, as was Clark. And, also like Clark, his grasp of detail is encyclopaedic. Just ask John Campbell.

    • maninthemiddle 6.7

      “The MOU/co-operation is to change the government. Lisa Owen wants to know what the govt will look like, but it’s not possible to know that at this stage.”

      So, let me get this straight. The LabGreens are coexisting for no other reason than a negative one. Ok. So then they are going to ask us to vote for something they are not prepared to define or describe in any detail. Get stuffed.

    • Pat 6.8

      But we have to remember that we need change more than we need power.


    • Sacha 6.9

      “we have to remember that we need change more than we need power. ”

      Totally agree. Even if it means sitting on the sidelines.

  7. Dorothy Bulling 7

    Desperately needed right now. Change the government to one that provides the care needed by the sick, the resources needed by schools, the roads repaired, Radio New Zealand properly funded, waterways cleaned up, tax system recalibrated so that everyone pays their fair share, mark our place in the world not by how many use us as a tax haven but by how we look after our people, how we administer local government so that each bears a fair burden according to their means, and communities get enough to look after those with health and life problems. Needed now ? Oh yes!

  8. Bill 8

    So what I’m not quite getting is that this idea of ‘changing the government’ seems to be being touted as some new thing…an idea whose time has come or whatever. In my world (which admittedly isn’t a social democratic centred one) I thought opposition was always about changing the government.

    I say that with a caveat of course because, in the words of the Bonzo Doo Dah Dog Band – “No matter who you vote for…

    And Jenny’s comment at 1.1

    • Rosie 8.1

      “So what I’m not quite getting is that this idea of ‘changing the government’ seems to be being touted as some new thing…an idea whose time has come or whatever.”

      It’s possible that in the minds of the swing voter or ‘only interested in politics once every three years at election time because theres nothing else on the telly’ type they might see this as a “new thing”. They might be forced to pay attention at a time they normally wouldn’t. They will get used to the idea of the bedding in of a genuinely stronger opposition.

      I do hope “change the government” becomes a meme and settles in people’s minds. Then they’ve got to get out and do the vote thing next year.

    • weka 8.2

      “In my world (which admittedly isn’t a social democratic centred one) I thought opposition was always about changing the government.”

      It’s not about changing the govt because they’re the opposition and that’s what they do. It’s about working together in a new way (this hasn’t happened in NZ for decades) to (a) keep the focus on how badly things have gone for NZ with this particular govt, and (b) present an alternative, not just any old opposition alternative, but one that will actively turn around all those things that people are so concerned about now. For a country that has had no effective opposition/govt in waiting for 8 years, that is a significant thing.

      Besides, campaigning on ‘we’re doing what we should be doing anyway’ doesn’t really engage the imagination does it 😉

      • Bill 8.2.1

        This ‘new way’ (whatever it may be)…I guess the “proof of the pudding” and all of that.

        But my central point remains. As you write – “for a country that has had no effective opposition/govt in waiting for 8 years…”

        So wtf has been going on? And is a piece of paper and some cordial pressers going to impact that apparent dereliction of duty or purpose? I said it when this was announced, but I’ll say it again, the fact that Labour and the Greens have to make a song and dance of this bothers me. As you’re aware I keep half an eye on UK politics and the supposed progressive elements there (Plaid Cymru, the Greens, SNP) just bloody well get on and do it….and across a number of parliaments and assemblies with different voting systems, jurisdictions, powers and what not too!

        No MoUs required.

        On a positive note, if it’s a play by Andrew Little to finally marginalise the right wing within the Labour caucus, then good. Maybe a formal MoU with the Greens was the only tool he had left in the cupboard.

        But they had better come up with something big to warrant all this hoo- ha. Not that I’m going to go all blue in the face about it, but something addressing Jenny’s points in 1.1 would be entirely appropriate. Anything less, to my mind, will just elicit an echo of the Bonzo’s “heigh-ho”.

        But we’ll see.

        • red-blooded

          Hey, even if all this does is energise and renew the sense of optimism amongst activists (and I don’t think that’s all it’ll do) then that’s still a damn good move. It’s hard to get out there and campaign wholeheartedly for a party when you have doubts about its cohesiveness, or its ability to work effectively both as a team and as a member of a larger team (ie, a government).

          I’m a Labour voter and I was deeply disappointed by the decision last time to “compete for every vote” and so fight against the Greens, rather than uniting to fight against the Nats et al. It was an unwise move politically, it diverted resources and it was discouraging for people who wanted to see a team ready to step up to the challenges of government. The days of single party government have gone and parties that are natural allies need to form alliances.

          About time!

          • Bill

            I don’t disagree with anything you’ve written. This MoU fabricates something that should have been a normal and natural state of affairs.

            I just watched the segment of Waatia on the MoU (had to scroll the visual away from the animated hamster 😉 ) and both Rachel Stewart and Chris Trotter were saying things worth pondering.

            Stewart views it in terms of a marketing ploy – not a bad thing per-se. And Trotter noted the comparison to the last time the parliamentary left ‘came together’. Anyway, it had me wondering whether it might have been better, instead of the presser, to unveil this “new way” to the public simply through the spectacle of Little addressing the Green conference. That and ‘three core areas of agreement”…which they may give us. We’ll see.

            • maninthemiddle

              Bill I listened to Chris on Radio Live this week and you’re on the money. This MOU is a major gaffe, a desperate attempt by Labour to rescue itself from financial bankruptcy and political irrelevance. There is obviously many areas of agreement between Labour and the Greens; for the next twelve months they should have simply worked together accentuating those areas of common interest.

              • Bill

                I don’t know what Labour’s motivation is, but the idea they’re seeking to use The Greens as a lifeboat doesn’t stack up.

                I’ll go with PR stunt (and not aimed at the likes of me) . And I’ll go with internal maneuverings against the right wing of Labour’s caucus.

              • Doogs

                Pardon!? Isn’t that what an MoU is all about?

                • maninthemiddle

                  Yes, so why do they need one? Why didn’t they simply show they can work together and achieve in practise what the left want to see? Having read the MOU I’m can’t believe how lightweight it is.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    That’s because your every contribution is made in dimwit bad faith.

                    • maninthemiddle

                      Have you read it? Have you seen the Nation interview with Mr and Mrs bland?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Have you absorbed the point I’m making: that your stupidity and/or hatred twists everything you believe.

                      If you believe the comments you author you’re stupid, and if you don’t you’re mendacious, and it’s probably both. What’s more, nothing you say is original: argumenta ad nausea may be useful to trash, and they’ll earn you nothing but contempt from me.

                      There are genuinely original commenters and authors here at The Standard. People worth reading, and you, getting in the way.

                      Get out of the way, or get knocked down. Your call.

                    • maninthemiddle

                      Threats now OAB? Geez. If you don’t agree with what I’m posting, then engage. Or continue to make an idiot of yourself by shooting the messenger. Your call.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      You don’t have a point. Points have substance, and your comments offer nothing of substance. The value of “your” “opinion” is diminished by its lack of originality – there is nothing to distinguish you from a slogan.

                      Oh, and if you think my contempt for your behaviour “shoots the messenger”, that’s another example of your limited grasp of English.

  9. RedLogix 9

    Welcome aboard weka. First author post after so long commenting will be an interesting transition for you.

    Best of luck and I look forward to seeing strongly constructed arguments in post form, that we all know you are more than capable of.


  10. r0b 10

    Welcome Weka. Hurrah!

  11. save nz 11

    Our Plan to Change the Government +100

  12. Enough is Enough 12

    Turei was brilliant on The Nation this morning.

    She would not allow the interview to be derailed by stupid questions. She batted them away with ease by not answering them and reinforcing the message that New Zealand wants this government gone.

    Well done. That was brilliant.

    I can’t wait for the election debates.

    • greywarshark 12.1

      And Turei is on Radionz tomorrow morning on Wallace’s progam followed by a group of interesting items on current political concerns for NZ.. Worth waking up early for.

      Sunday 5 June – first thing!
      7:08 Metiria Turei – Green Party Conference
      7:20 Darren Brunk – Report from the Humanitarian Summit
      7:30 News headlines
      7:32 The Week in Parliament
      7:47 Brent Budowsky – The Campaign from Hell
      8:12 Insight: The Future of Work

      • Enough is Enough 12.1.1

        I might set the alarm for that

        • greywarshark

          I thought this too might help understanding of the electorate and citizenship – just noticed in lineup.

          9:37 Paul Spoonley – Muddle NZ
          A column on the RNZ site website caught Sunday Morning’s attention this week – David Slack’s piece was entitled “Who the Hell is the Middle New Zealand”. The headline may have hinted at an answer – but it was plain in reading it that the phrase Middle New Zealand – while handy for politicians and marketers – is pretty empty in meaning.

          Distinguished Professor Paul Spoonley from Massey University is a population expert and he can’t pinpoint Middle New Zealand – but he says around half of us think we qualify for the description.

    • Shug McGlumfer 12.2

      I hope this is posted as humour, if not you did not watch the same program as I did!
      Little was like a rabbit in headlights and Meteria was an embarrassment!!

    • James 12.3

      So she didnt answer questions – and went with a message that people want this government gone – despite its polling being higher than Greens / Labour.

      And you call that brilliant. well done that man.

  13. weka 13


    People are asking what name do we call the two parties now? In 2017 we call them THE GOVERNMENT!

    • weka 13.1


      the first political part conference he attended, at 16, was the Values Party conference.

      Is speaking today from a profound sense of responsibility.

      Wants to tell people that change is possible.

      A new politics of inclusion and optimism.

      • weka 13.1.1


        We owe it to our children, “I owe it to my son”, to do something about climate change (wild applause).

        • weka

          When did we decide that this was the kind of country we wanted?

          When did we decide this kind of poverty was ok?

          It’s a choice, we can choose out of it.

          To National, be a grown up, stop blaming others.

          • weka

            For Little, the core is the dignity of work, that people can stand on their own two feet.

            • Colonial Viper

              Hi weka, great authorship on a great post.

              Work is great and necessary, but jobs and employment are obsolescent, require economic growth and produce GHGs.

              Further, and unfortunately, neither the Greens nor Labour will accept, or be capable, of doing what it will take to substantially decrease unemployment: pump an extra billion or billion and a half dollars into the economy every month.

              • weka

                With respect, if the Greens were in government as the major party, they’d be doing the actual things needed not the pragmatic things politically. NZ had its chance to be on the right side of history with this and blew it. Even now you and I argue over voting for them, but even in Shaw’s speech yesterday I can hear the underlying knowledge: that climate change is the most important issue of all time and that they have been forced into this compromised position because not enough people were willing to vote for them. But they know.

                Because of all that, there is no party that could do what you suggest. They’d be out the next election and then where would we be? So it’s not that the Greens won’t accept or be capable of doing what is needed, it’s that the rest of NZ isn’t. When we sort that out I hope the Greens are in govt, because they’re the ones that have been working on this for the last 40 years.

                • Bill

                  So after that long to and fro about the effectiveness or otherwise of a carbon tax, I had a wee think about emission reduction coming at it from a non-chrematistic angle. There’s a very simple solution and I’ll put it up in post form in a few days time. But here’s the rub. It’s the first step away from the economy we have.

                  Would the Greens do such a thing? Well, I really have my doubts. And yet, if their rhetoric around global warming is genuine, and if they are half way realistic about various possible measures to combat it, then they’d have to commit to such non-chrematistic measures because they are the only ones with a snowball chance in hell of working.

                  • weka

                    Shaw’s speech basically said we don’t need to be rich, we just need enough to have a good life. Now we can debate what that means in reality, and whether his idea of good is meaningful* in the face of cc, but I’ll just point out that there is a continuous line from the Values Party manifesto in the 1970s and where we are now. That manifesto was written in the global context of the first wave of serious thought about resource depletion, including from mainstream organisations. So when I say the Greens know what the situation is, I’m taking a decades long view of building knowledge and putting it in the context of all that. Shaw, Norman etc will all be aware of that (and much better read than I am). This doesn’t make them superior experts (they will have their blind spots etc), but they do have a level of expertise that you and I don’t.

                    Your and CV’s critiques seem based in lack of awareness of what the Greens actually do and believe, and you are looking from the outside missing much of the context and underlying ethos. Not that you should stop critiquing, but maybe be open to the fact you might be missing something (me too).

                    *bear in mind too, that I suspect I see the need for ultimately a much lower standard of living than you do.

                    If by chrematistic you mean profit driven (making money for its own sake or because one values accumulation of wealth for its own sake), I’d like you to point to the GP policy that supports that. Or Shaw’s statements.

                    edit, and as you know, my view isn’t whether the Greens are doing what is needed, it’s whether they are taking us in the right direction. If they become part of govt next year, then in 5 years when everyone is scared about cc and wanting action, can they then lead on the powerdown or whatever? They can’t lead that today because so few people are voting for them relatively.

                    • Bill

                      This faith in the Green Party that you appear to have…the Labour Party came about off the back of a whole lot of socialist thought, ideas and ideals.

                      Things change.

                      You ask me what statement the Greens have made that indicates they have a chrematistic economic view and I’ll point you to, more than likely, to every economic announcement they’ve made.

                      Is there a single one that wasn’t based on the availability of money? On a need to generate money to put towards policy a or policy b? When they say invest when talking of economic matters, do they generally mean anything that does not include some type of financial injection? Do they or do they not couch their economic policies in terms of likely financial returns?

                      I’m pretty sure I’d have noticed if any of that was the case.

                      You maybe think they’re just couching things in a chremastistic framework while actually awaiting the chance to, out of the blue, abandon it all when in power? I’d have to say that I have my doubts.

      • greywarshark 13.1.2

        The government, OUR government – now that has a nice ring to it. Ting!

    • Rocco Siffredi 13.2

      “People are asking what name do we call the two parties now? In 2017 we call them THE GOVERNMENT!”

      Winston might have something to say about that….

      • greywarshark 13.2.1

        If the momentum is up and Winston is going to be left behind, he’ll scramble up on the hay cart. He knows how to make hay when the sun shines.

        • Rocco Siffredi

          How is he going to be left behind, you won’t get in Government without him.

          • weka

            He’s behind right now. L/G just shouted out they’re working together to change the government. Where is Peters? Still playing his power games?

            • Colonial Viper

              Peters may become bothered when LAB/GR consistently hits the mid 40’s mark. At between 36% to 44%, he knows that LAB/GR will definitely have to come calling round his place.

            • Rocco Siffredi

              “Where is Peters? Still playing his power games?”

              He’s laughing all the way to being PM. You can’t get power without him, it’s Labour and the Greens who need to play power games, and play to Winston’s rules.

      • James 13.2.2

        “People are asking what name do we call the two parties now? In 2017 we call them THE GOVERNMENT!”

        Winston might have something to say about that….

        Not to mention the voters.

      • Muttonbird 13.2.3

        I think Winston Peters, at this stage of his life, will want to make a commitment to the same people which Labour and The Greens want to make a commitment too.

        He will also want to be seen too be fighting for his electorate and the wider Northland and this I think does not sit at all well with National Party policy in Northland and National Party policy toward the disenfranchised.

        Those who believe Winston Peters will be part of a National government have clearly not listened to what he’s been saying over the last year or so.

        • leftie

          +1 Muttonbird.

        • DavidC

          Mutton bird care to give an example of when Peters has ever supported the Party who didn’t get the most votes at election time?

        • cowboy

          Winston laid bare on Q&A this morning that there will be a number of dead rats for the Lab/Greens to swallow. Severe cuts to immigration, restrictions on Muslims where they don’t commit to assimilate and no appetite for allowing specific Maori influence over planning issues or resource allocation as examples.

          The reality is Winston is a conservative and a master at playing to his base. He knows that there are plenty of potential votes to harvest in conservative rural electorates and he will be very reluctant to jeopardise that by showing much love to the Greens, in particular. That said there is plenty of common ground economically but on social issues there is much distance. This is going to be a massive test of Little’s much touted negotiation abilities.

          On the Lab/Green MOU, totally the right move. No point in being in denial of the reality. Yes it does have the potential to shine a greater light on their differences but it would be naïve to think that wouldn’t be exploited by the Nats anyway. Remember the rowing boat ads. Best to front foot it and get on with presenting a viable alternate govt, warts and all.

  14. weka 14

    Crowd going wild now (Little committing NZ to climate change action).

  15. Once was Tim 15

    Just asking ….. but did anyone else see that frikken shambles of an interview on “The Nation” this morning by Lisa Owen with MT and AL.
    Was she wearing knickers that were two sizes too small or what!?
    Has she still not come to terms with MMP?
    It’s hard to try and understand what came over her – it was an “it’s all about me; I’m an investigative johnolist and hard nosed piece of pure unadulterated bullshit.
    I appreciate satellite delays et al, but for Christ Sake’s Lisa – get a frikken grip!
    I’m tempted to look at some sort of content analysis – if I were a betting person it’d be odds on that tight-knickered Lisa’s voice was far more prevalent that both her guests put together.
    Not your best work Lisa! (BTW…. I’m almost tempted to ask how big your mortgage is), ‘cos the only explanation I can come up with is that you’re feeling a little bit insecure at Mediaworks. Journalism? I think not!
    The biggest dissapointment was that neither the Vic Uni fella (whose name eludes me but really really shouldn’t), and Simon – I’m comfortable – WIlson – tending right didn’t pick her up on her complete fucking shambles.

    • dukeofurl 15.1

      Link to transcript here

      She sounds like shes using a pre prepared list of questions provided by the PMs office…. oops did I let the cat out the the bag.
      Nothing about current issues, ie homeless, house prices, student debt etc

      • Enough is Enough 15.1.1

        Little and Turei were awesome how they ignored her questions.

        The transcript shows it quite well. Lisa would ask a stupid question about Winston and they would just talk about the real issues.

        Keep that up. Don’t let the corporate media control the message

        • Craig H

          Seems quite apt since Winston is the master of ignoring questions while talking about other issues!

        • Chris

          I hope Labour stops its wasteful practice of asking loaded questions in the House that start along the lines of “Does the prime minister agree that the government’s [xyz] policy has been a complete failure…” to which Key or government MPs simply say “No, and we’ve done a darn-sight more than Labour did during its failed nine years in government…blah blah blah”. Such an utter and complete waste of oral question time that prevents any possibility of getting proper hits on the government while at the same time hands the government a club to beat the opposition over the head with. Just plain dumb. They should’ve said they’ll stop doing that in their MOU.

        • greywarshark

          Enough is Enough
          I have put this link up for a few connoisieurs of political maneouvring of interviewers. I think you might be one of them. CV likes it too. The name says a lot – The Incoming Member of Parliament’s Guide to Ducking Questions.


        • Venezia

          I have read that transcript and totally agree. Keep doing more of the same.

      • whateva next? 15.1.2

        Usual attempts to get that “soundbite” for the “journalist”, just a game for them, good to hear they didn’t bite.

      • Once was Tim 15.1.3

        Do you know if Dear Simon bikes over the harbour bridge these days – as opposed to pushing a perambulator down Marjoribanks Street (pronounced ‘marshbanks street’) with the delightful produce of his skinny liitle loins?
        No doubt the regular gal will come to his rescue if ever there’s any media-based conquest as to his ‘creds’ (going forward).
        I do confess however – he (or rather his parents) did have a rather gorgeous polished concrete floor at Burma Raod – one we could all get learnings from going forward

  16. Jack Ramaka 16

    Good to see Labour and the Greens co-operating before the next Election the only way we are going to see a change of Government is to get a Labour/Greens/NZF Coalition.

    They were shooting each other in the feet before the last Election, good to see the political parties starting to mature and understand how MMP works.

    We need to see an end to this Tory regime.

  17. Jenny Kirk 17

    Great post, Weka – and thanks for the updates as (presumably) Andrew Little was speaking to the Green conference. Been out in the garden all day (making the most of this glorious weather) so haven’t yet caught up on all the news – but your post is great. Like other commentators here – I feel renewed energy and enthusiasm for the fight to get rid of this awful government and the PM who constantly lies via a coalition govt of Labour and Greens (and maybe NZF if Winston wants to come in too).

    • whateva next? 17.1

      Light at the end of a long dark tunnel, everyone I talk to (including the neutral, “I am not interested in politics”) are enthused about the MOU.

  18. Richardrawshark 18

    Opposition parties generally I believe, don’t win elections, the governing party loses them.

    Way National is behaving, it’s almost as if that’s what they are succeeding at.

    No doubt they have syphoned off a few hundred million, shredded the evidence, hidden the money and it’s time to head off to Hawai.

  19. BM 19

    The co-leader with a penis seems to be a bit on the outer.

    • greywarshark 19.1

      Go to bed BM. You’re tired and the wit and wisdom of BM needs revitalising. You definitely are a … (choose some scatalogical term of your own devise.)

  20. weka 20

    Little, Shaw and Peters on Q and A in the morning. Should be interesting.

    Their framing is off though. Looks like a period of time of L/G educating about what the agreement is.

  21. AmaKiwi 21

    I don’t suppose anything has been said about changing from elected dictatorships to democracy.

    Would it be so bad if they said, “Our government will consider the results of any referendum to be binding.”

    It would also be an opening to NZ First, who have always advocated binding citizen initiated referendum.

  22. Colonial Viper 22

    And the election of those dictatorships being highly managed affairs…

  23. Jenny 23

    Both Andrew Little leader of the Labour Party and James Shaw co-leader of the Green Party gave their key note speeches yesterday.

    The following are some of the best excerpts, as I saw them.

    Andrew Little

    @9:40 minutes

    We owe it to our kids, I owe it to my son, to do something against climate change. Because they don’t have a future….. (applause drowns out final words)

    @14:07 minutes
    But you see that [housing] is not the only thing where they have been letting New Zealanders down. Take the absolute lack of ambition on climate change.
    Take their lack of action on protecting our environment. And standing up for our neighbours in the Pacific.

    @14:41 minutes
    Look at all they have done in the last eight years, think about the damage they would cause if they get another three. We can’t let that happen.

    @16:43 minutes
    In the last eighteen months Labour has made some great progress. We have a caucus that is working very well.
    We are reforming our party. And we are building a policy platform that can serve as the core of the next progressive government’s agenda.

    @20:15 minutes
    And we know that development that contaminates the air we breathe that chokes our lakes and waterways or damages our planet doesn’t serve our people and that we can and must do better.

    @22:30 minutes
    The government I lead will make our country a leader in the fight against climate change**

    (Huge applause). And I think we will all be very proud of that. (possible ad lib, greeted with genuine delighted laughter).

    @23:23 minutes
    And let me be very clear about one more thing.

    The government I lead will make fighting child poverty a top priority.


    We won’t accept children going to school hungry or going to sleep in bedrooms that make them sick.

    We will feed hungry kids at school.

    We will feed hungry kids at school.

    And we will bring in proper rental standards so that every child in New Zealand grows up in a room that is warm, safe, and dry.


    @24:31 minutes
    Next year, next year New Zealanders will have a clear choice. On one hand they will have a tired, out of touch government, that is increasingly looking after only the very few at the top, and that has presided over a stagnant economy, growing inequality and an endless housing crisis.

    Or, they can choose a new progressive government, our government, with a better plan for the future.

    Climate Change count: 4 mentions

    Rating: 9 out of 10

    James Shaw

    @27:48 minutes

    This is the moment.

    When New Zealand elects the first Labour Green government in about eighteen months time, this is the moment we will remember

    We will look back on the agreement that we signed with Labour this week.
    We will look back, to when Andrew joined us at this AGM. We will look to the moment when we sent a message of hope to New Zealand that change is coming.

    Andrew I welcome you here today.
    We welcome you here today. Thank you for coming.

    @29:05 minutes
    Like us, Labour has a commitment to solving the tough problems, challenges in our society, like the employment situation, jobs, health, education,the environment.

    Labour also has a track record in government of actually doing that, Kiwi Saver, Super Fund, Working For Families, these are multi-decade solutions to structural challenges in our society.

    That’s why this Memorandum of Understanding is so important.
    That’s why Andrew’s presence here today is such a break in the clouds.

    Labour and the Greens have different histories, we have different values, and we don’t agree on everything, but we do share a belief in the ability of government to transform things for the better.


    To find real solutions to real problems, to find jobs, and homes, and hope, for people who need them.

    @31:50 minutes
    In eight years we have seen no evidence that National, is either willing, or able to tackle the really big challenges, they have dealt with the superficial, they have allowed and encouraged those big structural problems to grow.

    They simply plastered over the cracks when they should have been building houses.


    @33:20 minutes
    Their [National’s] real accomplishments are things that they never talk about, the poisoning of our lands and our rivers the rapid decline and the threat of extinction of so many of our native species, A, catastrophic increase in our Green house gas emissions.
    More and more trucks hogging our roads…

    A housing crisis, and a homeless crisis…..

    Hundreds of thousands of kids growing up in poverty….

    @35:08 minutes
    I want to give New Zealanders a better vision of the future, it’s a future where on your weekends away you will go to sleep at night safely knowing that the same beach you are enjoying now will still be there for future generations unthreatened by rising seas….

    @39:45 minutes
    We will stop pretending that climate change isn’t a problem, isn’t THE Problem, isn’t the greatest challenge of all time….

    Climate change mention: 3 mentions.

    Rating 8 out of 10.

    My impressions of both speeches was favourable, and I thought both leaders were passionate and inspiring.

    And told it like it is.

    On balance Andrew Little’s speech was better, in that he mentioned a number of concrete policy decisions that you could put your finger on and say, ‘Yes, I agree with that’.

    Feed the kids is the big one. Safer healthier homes is another. Also Little’s commitment for New Zealand to become a world leader in fighting climate change, was another good one.*

    In contrast James Shaw’s speech was heavier on the inspiring soaring rhetoric, but held back on mentioning any specific policy decisions.

    No doubt these policies will be contained in Meteria Turei’s centrepiece speech today.

    Overall I thought it was a good start and speaks well for the future.

    I look forward to Meteria’s speech today, and what it might reveal about the direction of the Green Party.

    Further out, I look forward to the release of Labour Party’s full “policy platform”, that Andrew Little says his party are working on, and which according to Little, will form the core of the next progressive government’s agenda.

    All power to the Labour Party with this project. (I am confident that under the new MoU arrangement the Green Party will be given an opportunity to have their input into the final shape of this policy platform).

    **(Contrast Andrew LIttle’s, ‘New Zealand will be a “world leader” on climate change issues, with John Key’s cowardly strategy of New Zealand being a “fast follower”.
    Treacherously, John Key’s strategy of New Zealand being a Fast Follower, has in practice overseen a huge increase in New Zealand’s Greenhouse gas emissions)

  24. It will not matter one jot, which bunch of chicken chokers we have running this fiasco of a system. They all lie and are all in denial.
    Least we forget, it was the Greens and Labor that foisted the ponzi savings scam Kiwi Saver, onto an ignorant populace, assuring them there is at least 47 – 60 years worth of economic growth/environmental tolerance, left in the planet (smart or dumb it is still GROWTH), it was Labor and the greens that committed the average idiot Kiwi into a savings scam 100% dedicated to increasing CO2 emissions. It is labor and the Greens that encourage more and more children, just look at the number of their MPS with young children (more so the Greens).
    To maintain quality of life ie 18C bedrooms for every Kiwi = the accelerated destruction of the human friendly environment du?
    Yet here we all are praising the high priests, ‘we’ (read – you clowns) are like ignorant children, no better than the population on Easter Island, maybe John, Andrew and the shrubs could get together and build 3 more stories on top of every highrise in Wellington and Auckland in a Rapanui like attempt to appease the gods of climate and economic growth. It didn’t work back then, but who are we to learn from history?
    So like a bunch of comic strip characters we head into the future, happy happy joy joy.

    • Children! They have children!
      Thank you, Robert Atack. I hadn’t considered the depths those Green MPs had fallen to!
      Will you establish a Monks and Spinsters Party, for all our sakes?

      • greywarshark 24.1.1

        Robert Guyton
        Am I getting unreasonably anxious at this report on James Shaw’s speech in Jenny’s comment.
        @35:08 minutes
        I want to give New Zealanders a better vision of the future, it’s a future where on your weekends away you will go to sleep at night safely knowing that the same beach you are enjoying now will still be there for future generations unthreatened by rising seas….

        Surely if this quote or paraphrasing is correct, he is looking to something real that is now just a wish. It seems more than hopeful to me, and time to ‘Curb your enthusiasm’ James. Stick with the probabilities. What do you think Robert? From what I have learned we will definitely have coastlines threatened by rising seas and should suck it up and the intelligent, reasonable policy is to start now planning for housing on higher ground, ways to cope for hospitals, shops etc.

        • Robert Guyton

          Depends on the beach, I guess. Those of Lake Manapouri are unlikely to change much, but you know I’m dancing on a pinhead.
          Yes, that fragment of James’ speech, if accurately reported, is vulnerable to criticism by those of us who hold the view that all will change. It will however, not upset those with a more conservative view. He does begin, “I want to give New Zealanders a better vision…” and that’s admirable enough though I’d like his vision to be closer to mine (and yours, I’m guessing). That said, do you want James to ‘do an Atack’ on his audience? Hard, cold facts are suitable for certain occasions but not all. Walking up to some vulnerable soul in the street and telling them the “truth” could be a bit harsh if it leaves them a puddle of despair. I’m keen to have a closer look now, at James’ speech. I’ll report back 🙂

          • greywarshark

            Robert Guyton
            Yes about not going into the road and scaring the horses, true. wow Robert – words of wisdom – keep it up, we need to set a good curse (woops Freudian slip there, meant course) and work on that, most of us anyway.

            And about the shrubs. That is a skewed remark, shrubs being equivalent of small bushes, and bush is not my favourite word. Just planting any green thing that gives something to the land without taking over, like my hated bindweed, would be suitable. What about plopping some potting mix and a seed or cutting or transplanted plant into every plastic container used with a teaspoon of water a day, and give it to the charity shops to sell if you haven’t a suitable place to put it. Preferably a vegetable, but hey we need roses as well as bread.

            • Robert Guyton

              Sorry for the tardiness in replying – I’ve been in a garden (by invitation), encouraging the gardener to continue down the permaculture line he’s begun to take – given that he was, until a year ago, fully conventional in his approach (weed mat, riverstones, herbicides etc.) he’s done very well, with a naturalistic meadow appearing where his lawn once was, and more (every little bit helps). On the way back (walking) I snapped some cuttings from a roadside shrub (theme of the day) and poked those into some soil in the community orchard we have established here in the village. It’s as easy as that, changing the world. Your potted-plant idea is a very good one – getting others to plant and care for shrubs etc that you struck is a wise and clever way to green up the place. Roses, btw, are edible (petals and hips) so you’re doing a great service, perhaps without having known it. In the middle of this swirl of prediction about what climate change will bring, growing and planting out plants that produce food in every available patch of soil is for me a meaningful and satisfying activity; like the cartoon says, “what if we do all this and it turns out global warming was a hoax”, there’s great gain to be made in no matter what transpires, by making foragable food available to your/my/our fellow humans.

              • greywarshark

                Robert Guyton
                Thanks for reply. We are all busy except me so have to go and do something not with a computer.
                Good idea with the permaculture that I will look at further on.

                I appreciate your work and all the others trying to stop us being killing machines to the planet.
                I read in The Press 25/5 about the trouble that wineries are having with killer agriculturalists. One chap smelt spray and went up to neighbour on a hill where hormone spray was drifting from and got the response to his protest and request to desist that it was rubbish and he wasn’t going to stop.

                I can see that violence wll break out as it not only harms crops, it can mean a great loss of return on investment, and one wine grower said that the cost of sprays’ harm to his operation would be about half a million, not an exact figure but indicating the sort of problem it is.

                And about roses, the ones without thorns are moss roses aren’t they? Do they have rose hips too? It’s the thorns that put me off roses, nasty on the shrub and still nasty to handle when pruning, and dealing with piles of pruning, go through gloves etc.

                • greywarshark
                  I read the vineyard story also – it brings up the old chestnut of private ownership of land and the rights that go with that – so called. The rules have been written by the dominant culture but are bent to favour the same tribe. You can’t go chucking velvetleaf seed over their farm fences, but they’ve no compunction about wafting their herbicides over the organic neighbours fence, claiming that their own spray-assisted farming operation would be harmed by the claims of the organic farmers – classic hypocrisy right there.
                  As far as I know, all roses have hips – they’re the fruits that follow the flowers, naturally enough. The best roses to grow for their juicy and Vitamin C-rich hips, are the rugosa roses. They are spikey but not thorny in the way the rhino-horned varieties are. Roses and apples are from the same family, btw.

            • weka

              Here’s the whole speech (although it’s better to listen to watch)


              Seas are going to rise, but we still have a chance to mitigate the worst of CC. Do we want subsequent generations to live in contant panic? Or do we want them to be able to respond to the changes in their environment knowing that we are all doing everything we can, and that we chose to avert the worst of teh disaster.

    • greywarshark 24.2

      Robert Atack
      I am concerned that you should not drive this morning while in your present condition.
      Just lie down with a cold compress on your forehead and think about something simple and boring that you understand, like mowing the lawn. You are foaming at the mouth, and on the fire scale the arrow has swung towards the orange.

      Give yourself some love and care for a while, you are obviously feeling very vulnerable, and soon you will be able to see the horizon in the distance with objectivity.

    • Colonial Viper 24.3

      I don’t see why Robert Atack should be denigrated for stating the obvious incoherancy in Green and Labour economic policy.

      If you are going to extol the virtues of giving workers money to Wall St, if you are going to extol the virtues of economic growth and of holding down a job, then you clearly haven’t the foggiest idea of the causes of climate change and the things which will accelerate us towards a bad (worse) situation.

    • Jenny 24.4

      ‘we’ (read – you clowns) are like ignorant children, no better than the population on Easter Island,
      Robert Atack

      So what do you think we should do Robert?

      • Robert Atack 24.4.1

        Okay Jenny, you asked.
        The environment is closer to 1,000 ppm CO2/CO2e, than it has been in the last 50 – 60 million years, the only way a child born today will survive the next 10,20 or lets be optimistic 30 years, is if we can bring CO2/e levels down to about 260 – 300 ppm. The industrial scale we would need to reach to extract enough CO2 etc out of the environment in time frames that matter is bigger than WW1, WW2, and say the tar sands operation combined, and ‘we’ would need to do it without burning anymore fossil fuels.
        9 out of every 10 calories of food you consume is reliant on fossil fuels …. we eat oil, so when we stop supporting our diets with oil,gas, and electricity created with coal many many people are going to starve.
        There isn’t enough land to support 7 + billion people. Without oil, gas and all the imported wingdings our power gird is dependent on New Zealand would be lucky to support a million people? CV might be crunching those #?) .
        CO2 levels are rising now more so from what nature is pumping out then what ‘man’ is. I think that is called runaway. Currently CO2 levels are rising exponentially.
        This thing is impossible to turn around, all suggestions are like giving the people in steerage bigger buckets.
        I’ve been on the same theme since 1999, ‘the only way to reduce future human suffering is to reduce the amount of humans at the top of the cliff, and the most ‘humane’ way of doing this is to stop having bloody kids . And if you have half a brain you should be able to work it out with a few weeks of reading shit on the net, I’m a 4th for drop out (so maybe only 1/4 brained?) back in 1999 I thought ‘now’ would be happening around 2040ish, and that if I had a child then, it would be my age by 2040, and @ 40 I was still making ‘plans’, you know, new car/job/house/future. Then I ‘discovered’ peak oil, I lead by example and had a vasectomy (to much info I know), because as the numbers were stacking up having a child with what I knew, was tantamount to murder, if not a form of molestation? Having one in self imposed ignorance might just be manslaughter?
        As Guy McPherson keeps saying “Only love remains”, (I’m sure he says this as a form of “well I told ya so”) the ‘hope’ is that if humans could face the facts, then maybe we could avoid the hell depicted in The Road or 22After.com, or any other hollywood, future disaster type movie.
        Global food production is falling at an increasing rate, famine isn’t far away, the only way we could have avoided +6c is if we had stayed below +1c, people want to gamble ,( even though we have gone from 260 to +400 ppm CO2 10,000 times faster than in the past ) and try and force something they profess to love through this future. … though if you avoid the truth, then I guess it isn’t a gamble ?
        I call it the scatter gun approach, we fire as many babies at the bottle necks as we can, with luck some will get through, but alas, then they come smack up against the cork that is climate change.
        So what to do?
        Face facts, accept the truth, and stop having children, there isn’t anything else to do, and lets not talk about the 440 nuclear power plants, that need a continuous supply of power for at least the next 40 years, if we tried to decommission them now.
        If we all followed say the MP Marama Davidson’s example the population of the planet could be over 10 billion by now …. go girl.

        • Robert Guyton

          So, that’s two suggestions from you, Robert Atack:

          stop having children

          denigrate every other possible action

          Have I got that right?

          • Robert Atack

            Okay so are you accepting that stopping child production is a good thing?
            Because the problem with the hope peddlers, is that for example Kiwi Saver being promoted by the Greens, just promotes more imposable growth, which leads the uninformed to have more children.
            And promoting things that, as I said, were like supplying bigger buckets to the people down in steerage on the Titanic, only encourages more and more children.
            Demanding everyone lives in warm dry houses, as desirable and proper as the thought is, also just adds more CO2 and alas more children. It sucks but everything that is good for us is bad for the environment and shortens our ‘residency’
            We are at best capable of tweaking the inevitable, with maybe nuclear bombs under the deserts as one suggestion, to ships spraying water into the air ???
            We are something like 20 (?) years behind the true forcing factor of the current 408 ish ppm CO2, but catching up fast, 400 ppm = 26 meters sea level rise in some places (and a 30 mt fall in others ??) it equals 6 C above preindustrial, this is locked in, this is what 400 ppm CO2 looks like (the 600 ppm CO2e with the CH4 is just a bonus, that the talking heads don’t factor into their BS reports. …. with about another 200 ppm CO2e with ‘other things’, you can research yourself.
            Not trying to denigrate so much as point out that the first and foremost thing to do is stop having children, everything else is the right thing to do yes, but I’m sorry whatever you do will only see you going down fighting, good on you for giving it ago.
            Maybe if the message caught on, we could stop killing each other, and go out morris dancing or some such?
            If a path to the better there be, it begins with a full look at the worst.
            Thomas Hardy in 1887

            • Robert Guyton

              Robert Atack – a Thomas Hardy fan, eh! That explains, perhaps, your depressive approach to the world. He’s a marvelous writer, of that there is no doubt, but I wouldn’t want him as my team’s motivator under any circumstance and that motivators are vital for success, you seem not to understand. Calling them “hope peddlers” is counter-productive and a touch spiteful, in my view. Everyone plays their part; you are playing Thomas Hardy quite convincingly but I don’t recall him demeaning his more cheerful fellows in the way you do so casually. “Morris dancing”, you say? That’s for silly-billies, isn’t it? Every one knows that, eh, Robert. Folk dancing’s for poofters, eh. What did “folk” know about anything? I do appreciate that you’ve said, “good on you for giving it a go” – that’s all Pollyannas like me need, a glimmer of encouragement from crusty old doomsayers like yourself and we swing into another round of positive thinking and action. I guess the Greens occupy the same niche, yay-sayers that is, though the pinched Right more often portray them as doom-mongers so I guess someone’s confused somewhere. Ain’t me though. Perhaps it’s you?

              • a Thomas Hardy fan, no I can’t make that claim, he is just quoted in the movie End of Suburbia https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3uvzcY2Xug
                I sold a pirated copy to Sue Kedgley, way back then?
                Mate back when maybe it could have helped, 2000 ish, but not really I was squawking from the rooftops about, overpopulation, resource depletion, looking at how Cuba faced peak oil, I was full of hope, I use to go and speak to politicians, goddamn !! I even ran for parliament and local council, but not really, I was just using the platform for free publicity.
                made 5K on oil futures once 😉
                But yeah, good luck on whatever endeavor you think is going to change anything for the better, I’m very pro keeping the hot water flowing that is for sure. I just wouldn’t guarantee washing a newborn in it in 9 months.
                It’s no one’s fault things are this screwed, everything grows to the maximum the environment can support, then crashes. It is just unfortunate for us to be standing on this peak.
                @ about 3.8 million I said we should close the borders.
                There might be enough time to do a few good things, like maybe build glasshouses on school rugby fields or some such, and teach the kids to grow food. try and create a ‘Cuban’ attitude, close the Wherehouse (?) and not because you want to create local jobs, cause we have to end consumerism, it is ending anyway. About the only thing we can do is get ready for a lot more hungry people, maintaining a good food supply is the best way to maintain law and order, I hope the top people understand that?
                The gov will have to get rather Stalinist, and start confiscating ‘ghost houses’, and filling them with people, and if that isn’t enough they will have to confiscate bedrooms.
                And if you are really serious you can start depopulating the cities, and getting people out producing food, because without the fossil fuel input NZ may only be able to support 1 million people?
                Or you could vote I guess?

                • mauī

                  Rob your work in the early 2000s was visionary (http://www.oilcrash.com/index.htm), just letting you know someone appreciates it. It’s a pity people weren’t listening to your peak oil message, much like they’re oblivious to the general global warming message today.

                • Robert Atack – your 9:31pm comment is very interesting and less punishing to read than your usual ungloved swipes. Clearly you’ve put a greater than usual effort into turning your fellow humans from their/our folly with regard warming the planet. It seems to have left you angry, understandably, especially when you read comments from others suggesting actions that you know are not going to work, coming as they do, too late. I’m interested to know what you think about human behaviour during catastrophes in general; that is, when the future appears hopeless and destruction imminent, what should an individual do? It seems your choice is only to berate and fulminate. I hope I’m wrong in assuming this, and please forgive me if I’m wrong. If you are still in the game, and I believe you are, seeing as you post here knowing that people are reading your comments, could you would you, tell me what you are actually doing in the real world, in response to your understanding of the climate situation? Have you built an ark? Learned to weave discarded plastic bags into hammocks? Raise guinea pigs for the pot? Make it through the day without coffee? Perform surgery with a sliver of obsidian?
                  I’m keen, as you see, to know what you are doing personally, given that time is limited and the heat is on.

        • greywarshark

          Robert Atack
          You have just dropped another brick of facts to weigh us down . I can’t afford to immerse myself in all the horrible possibilities to come, especially when I know there are horrible things happening now. To live into a worthwhile future I need to take on enough information and think what I can do along with others to try to prevent stuff happening, and prepare for what does.

          I also need to feel that there are good people out there that are holding onto their humanity. and values working for change, and not just hold every bad prophesy in our heads. We must not give up and lambast each other. There is only so much we can do, at this stage, we can face things more easily if we haven’t abandoned our humanity and our hope. So feed us the facts slowly, and put something positive at the end like they do on the broadcast news. We can take it in easier then and maybe that will lighten your information load and fears slightly too.

        • Jenny

          “So what do you think we should do Robert?”

          “I’ve been on the same theme since 1999, ‘the only way to reduce future human suffering is to reduce the amount of humans at the top of the cliff, and the most ‘humane’ way of doing this is to stop having bloody kids.”
          Robert Atack

          “Face facts, accept the truth, and stop having children, there isn’t anything else to do,….”
          Robert Atack

          Granted, Robert that overpopulation is a problem and that we should stop having more kids. But that is not what we are discussing.

          We were discussing climate change and what we should do about that.

          Let us look at the facts.

          Over population is a problem, (and an admittedly terrible problem), but it is not the cause of climate change.

          If we could magically cull ninety percent of the world’s population it would not make the slightest bit of difference to climate change.

          Where most of the population increase is occurring is in the so called “underdeveloped” nations, least responsible for climate change.

          Ironically and inversely the minority of developed countries most responsible for climate change are “suffering” population decline.


          Also ironically and inversely the third world nations least responsible for climate change are the ones suffering the worst effects.


          Most of the the climate change we are seeing now is the result of the actions of about ten percent of the world’s population concentrated in the so called developed world. And most of these so called first world countries are “suffering” a population slump. i.e. not enough people are being born to replace the current population.

          The world’s richest 10 percent account for nearly half of global carbon gas emissions, while the poorest half of the world — approximately 3.5 billion people — contribute a mere 10 percent


          I repeat, climate change and overpopulation are two very different problems.

          There is one outlier in the developed world, where the population is not declining and that is the United States of America.

          U.S. fertility is dramatically higher than almost all other developed countries. Europe’s aggregate fertility varies between approximately 1.3 and 1.5, depending upon region, and Japan is at 1.3

          [Because of infant mortality, anything below 2.1 is below replacement level]

          Each year there are approximately 4 million births in the U.S. and 2.4 million deaths


          That the US is the only Developed Nation to experience natural population growth, points to causative factors like conservative political views influenced by religious views around birth control and sex education. Which sees the US with the largest number of unplanned teen pregnancies in the developed world.
          The U.S. teen birth rate is 53 births per 1,000 women aged 15–19 the highest in the developed world.

          This above anomaly points to the fact that population growth like climate change has political roots and causes and (therefore, by inference) political solutions.

          The other outlier to the general trend is China, a third world authoritarian regime which has severely curbed its population growth through the rigidly enforced “One Child Policy”. China has recently outpaced the US as the number one greenhouse gas emitter.


          I think you get the idea Robert. Overpopulation is a terrible problem for those countries suffering it, but it is not the cause of climate change.

          Though there are similarities in the solutions suggested for both.

          David Attenborough the famous TV Naturalist, often talks about the problem of human overpopulation.

          Attenborough says that we need to convince the politicians and through them their electorates to act on sex education and birth control.

          The same as for climate change, we must convince the political leaders and their electorates to agree to act on climate change.

          Robert your advice not to have children will make little difference to climate change.

          • Jenny

            As Robert Atack says humanity is reaching a bottle neck.

            If we are to see dropping birth rates in the third world then they must be allowed to develop.

            If they are allowed to develop they will increase greenhouse gas emissions to horrifically high levels.

            This is one of the sticking points of COP21 negotiations. The representatives from the Third World are demanding that the First World mostly responsible for climate change, fund the technologies that will allow the underdeveloped countries to develop sustainably.

            Otherwise they will have no option but to choose the most cheapest and most polluting technologies available.


            • Colonial Viper

              US birthrates are high compared to other developed nations because insecurity, poverty and poor education levels in the US are high compared to other developed nations.

          • Robert Atack

            I’m not saying population is or isn’t responsible for climate change, I mean it is a nonsense arguing the obvious. As you seem to agree though if most of us go over night it will make no difference to the situation, the climate is going to keep heating for the foreseeable.
            The climate is continuously changing, that is undeniable, for the past 800,000 years nearly every time the CO2 hit something like 315 ppm it turned around and went back down to around 260 ppm (with a CH4 average of .7ppm) in 10 – 20,000 year cycles or there abouts (?), that is why in the 70s they were saying we were heading back to an ice age, and maybe we would have if it wasn’t for the …… POPULATION ….. burning fossil fuels and pushing CO2 to even higher levels, resulting in us now hitting 408 ppm, which is runaway, and will not come down till after the atmosphere has gone past 600 ppm CO2.
            The only reason I keep harping on about reducing child birth …. to zero, is because this near future is unavoidable, a child born today, if not the child born 58 years ago (me), is going to suffer from the catastrophe that is 400 – 600 ppm CO2
            Putting up castle in the sky ideas, like reducing emissions, warm houses, equal rights, full employment, full health cover, all the great stuff that we all want I know, but they just lead to speeding up the inevitable.
            If the 1% gave up their ill gotten gains, it would only make things worse, as the 99% went on a spending spree, as if the planet had enough stuff to buy?
            Maybe the only thing most of us can do is help set up neighborhood watches/militia groups, the people in walking distance will be the most help, and the most danger, get to know them.

            • Robert Guyton

              Robert Atack – you and I have trod similar paths. I too stood as a candidate for central government and I too stood as a candidate for local council (been a regional councillor for two terms now, with the third looming on the horizon). Your last sentence rings trueish 🙂 Walking distance, yes, most help, most danger, yes, militia, not so much. You and I should talk, I reckon. Do you have an “off-Standard” contact? Mine’s easy to find.
              ‘sup 2 u.

  25. Shrubs!
    Robert Atack is right about the shrubs.
    Shrubs will play an important role in cooling global warming, as will trees, vines, grasses etc.

  26. greywarshark 26

    Colonial Viper
    Well everyone cannot jump into the future like a sort of Batman CV. We have to travel on the ground which is slower and Labour/Green are trying to clear the way to progress in the right direction. Considering that the whole country is living on a dream bubble that is likely to collapse sometime, L/G need to go carefully but resolutely with as much speed as possible.

    Way to go, Batman – don’t open up new potholes or erect new barriers to the journey.

    • Colonial Viper 26.1

      The best possible speed of Lab/Gr.

      Reminds me of Star Trek II, the ending where the Enterprise is trying to escape from the Reliant at best possible speed. But there was no way they were going to make it out of the blast radius without warp speed.

      We need warp speed and we don’t have it. Anything less is fine for filling in the time, no doubt.

      • Robert Guyton 26.1.1

        Colonial Viper – when faced with a seemingly impossible situation, there are two choices for those doing the facing:
        capitulation and preparation for doom
        taking every possible action, despite the threat, and hoping the Reliant might strike an unforseen problem, changing the scenario enough to allow a squeaky and narrow escape.

        I choose the latter, ’cause, hope.

        (btw, how did the Enterprise fare?)

      • greywarshark 26.1.2

        Got to get started Colonial Viper.for sure. Don’t diss the baby steps, a bit more patience and hand holding and soon you can’t stop the kids. But has to be on the ground, not up in the airy-fairy idealistic space. Robert Guyton sounds as if he is wanting the same as you and is doing practical steps to get started. He’s down your way isn’t he? Worth a chinwag.

        • Colonial Viper

          Well, I’m not dissing anything, I am for a realistic appraisal of what NZ needs to do over the next 10-15 years, particularly politically and governmentally.

          The interesting thing being that in about 10-15 years, I believe it will finally dawn on the top quartile how fucked we really are, and there will be the start of what the NSA types carefully term “societal disruption”.

          The thing is, regardless of how hard I try and motivate myself, I can’t call energetically bailing out the Titanic with a tea cup a productive use of time, “baby steps” or anything else along those lines.

          • Robert Guyton

            2 years time.

            • Colonial Viper

              Hmmm that seems fast to me. I was judging at least 5 to 6 years but most probably 10+

              • We wish. I believe 2. Let’s get busy 🙂

                • Pat

                  what do you base your two years on?…and is that two years to realization or societal changing impacts?

                  • Hi, Pat. I’m interested in soil. I meet with Graeme Sait on the occasions that he visits New Zealand as part of his on-going series of lectures on how farmers can mitigate climate change through practices that sequester carbon in soil as humus. He circulates around Prime Ministers, Presidents and Agricultural Ministers of the major countries of the world’s continents pressing them to act through farming to calm the heating situation. One year ago, he was talking “a decade from now”. In April this year, he looked spooked and was saying, “2 years” and citing the oceanic methane bubbles (1 square kilometre to 1 000 square kilometres) etc. People walked out of his presentation. I stayed and listened. That’s where my “2 years” comes from. I don’t mean to startle. I’m acting as if that’s the case. I hate getting caught flat-footed 🙂

                    • Pat

                      Ok, thanks for that (I think).

                    • weka

                      I’m feeling an urgency I wasn’t before too. My problem with time predictions is that we actually have no idea what will happen when because the situation is so unstable and chaotic. I’m also mindful that past predictions that have been off then create a sense of unreality for people.

                    • greywarshark

                      I think I will retire and try and digest this while I am sleeping. But what can I do I think. My family remain resolutely optimistic and blind. As long as nothing bad happens to them they are okay. And all of them are fully occupied making a good living and don’t have much time in the weekends when they want to get on their horses or see their friends.

                      Two years. And we are still getting asses going on about what Helen Clark said and she was no good haha. It’s like we eddy around in a whirlpool and can’t get away.

                    • 2 years? I’ll be interested to see where we are in 2 years. Special report each night on telly, mass refugees, droughts, storms, famine, war, terror, injustice as the few push away the many – hmmm sounds like now to me.

  27. KJT 27

    Good to see your first Author post. Excellent, and welcome.

  28. fisiani 29

    Metiria claimed that National spending $10,000,000 a year on river clean up is “a drop in the bucket” If we assume that she really believes that it ijust a drop (ie less than 1/1000 of a bucket) then she has just announced a $10,000,000,000 annual expenditure on cleaning up rivers. Will Grant Robertson want to respect this and give up all expenditure on hospitals schools and welfare? I think not. She has just lost the 2017 election with this pledge.

    [$10M is for all waterways over ten years, and is allowed to be used for irrigation. Banned for 1 day from this thread for making shit up/intentionally misleading around party policy, and wasting my moderation time on a Sunday afternoon.] – weka

    • whateva next? 29.1

      except that we have already heard Grant WILL BE MINISTER FOR FINANCE, relax!

    • Nice wielding of the ban-stick, weka.
      Was that your first? If so, good start.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 29.2.1


        Wingnuts like a short sharp shock, or at least, they fantasise about administering them to the people they dehumanise. Who knows, they might learn some manners this way.

  29. BM 30

    Thought this was a interesting comment over on the daily blog

    What the Blue-Green faction and the Identitarians within the Greens wanted for this AGM was a new strategic announcement that the Greens would in fact do the same as NZ First and sit on the cross benches and decide issue by issue what legislation they would and wouldn’t support. The Left factions within the Greens picked up on this attempt and informed the Left faction within Labour of this growing resentment. The stalled talks of co-opertaion were quickly rehashed and the Memorandum of Understanding agreed to


    Sort of explains why Shaw is looking like a third wheel.

    • KJT 30.1

      You do know that Bomber does not like the Greens.

      Most of his statements about them are a bit suss.

  30. greywarshark 31

    Every operation in a hospital operating theatre could be reported in that sort of breathless way and yet they turn out successfully BM.

    Remember good things do take time and effort. Don’t try to jinx good things happening in NZ or be negative about important delicate processes of negotiation and change.

    The concerned whanau around the two Parties need to be positive and receive support from the thinking members of the citizenry in trying to achieve triage systems to save the country.

  31. Your Average Voter 32

    I was waiting eagerly for the big policy announcement about our rivers and lakes. What a complete disappointment.
    Blamed the Nats for the problem. Identified a few rivers and will visit them and get a petition going. Is that the best they could do? Really? (My reading source was stuff.co.nz)

    • Reddelusion 32.1

      10m over 10 years, pathetic, been a rwnj there are still things we agree on, clean rivers been one

      • One Anonymous Bloke 32.1.1

        “Agree”, in this context, means “pay lip service to”.

    • mauī 32.2

      I was going to ask what would you do, but then I thought that’s just a waste of time.

  32. Karen 33

    Just watched the Q & A panel discussion about the MOU. Overall it was very positive – better analysis than from some of the political journalists.


    There is also an ongoing interesting twitter discussion about a positive NZ Herald article about the conference speeches by Isaac Davidson that has mysteriously been edited to be much less positive and Isaac’s name has been taken off it. Interference from someone in power?

    • Reddelusion 33.1

      Yes Karen John key as head of the lizard men and illuminati has total editorial control over the Nz herald, didn’t you know ?

      • Anne 33.1.1

        Who is jumping to conclusions eh? You.

        Did Karen say anything about John Key? There are oodles of people with influence on the Herald (and other news outlets) from within and beyond. I can speculate too but I won’t because I have no idea who it was except to say… I bet Karen is correct – someone interfered!

      • mauī 33.1.2

        His son gets wall to wall coverage and fluff stories get written about how he would tame a gorilla. So you’re right about his editorial influence.

      • Peter 33.1.3

        …. not to mention huge influence in commercial radio via Hosking and Henry.

        The media dices are loaded against democratic change in 2017.

    • weka 33.2

      thanks, dropped the interviews below.

      Link to the twitter convo?

      http://tvnz.co.nz/q-and-a-news/greens-we-re-getting-nz-first-better-than-ever-video-6475300 (Little and Shaw)


      Interesting to hear Peters telling an actual lie there (“I never attacked the Greens in the past”). Pity he can’t get on board because NZF have some good policies and lots of potential to also work together.

      • Karen 33.2.1

        Weka this is the twitter convo that alerted me to it. After that the article changed yet again – with Isaac’s name reappearing and some of the original article but “pandering” remained.

        Julie Anne Genter ‏@JulieAnneGenter 19h19 hours ago Auckland, New Zealand
        .@nzherald the article I initially linked has been massively edited – now reports far less of the speeches and negatively editorialises.

        Grant Robertson ‏@grantrobertson1 19h19 hours ago Auckland, New Zealand
        @JulieAnneGenter @nzherald interesting editing of the original article, incl introducing words like “pandering”. What gives @nzherald

        Dovil ‏@Dovil 19h19 hours ago
        @grantrobertson1 @JulieAnneGenter @nzherald it would be interesting to know the background as to who and why the changes were made.

        Julie Anne Genter ‏@JulieAnneGenter 18h18 hours ago Auckland, New Zealand
        @Dovil @grantrobertson1 @nzherald originally written by @isaac_davison, no byline now.

        Jeremy Jones ‏@jeremy_pm 18h18 hours ago
        @JulieAnneGenter @Dovil @grantrobertson1 so @nzherald are you going to let @isaac_davison take rap? Seems like byline removed by sub-editor?

        Isaac Davison
        @jeremy_pm @JulieAnneGenter @Dovil @grantrobertson1 @nzherald I wrote original article and comment piece. Not sure why the article is gone..

    • weka 33.3

      Just watched the Q and A panel, very impressive. Thoughtful commentary from across the spectrum, with the interviewer doing his job of eliciting relevant opinion from the guests. If Q and A is normally like this I’ll watch more often.

    • Peter 33.4

      … an example of the sort of democracy and free speech that the Nats believe in!

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    3 weeks ago

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  • Pacific partners work together to provide additional support to Australia
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