Party reform

Written By: - Date published: 8:44 pm, December 2nd, 2011 - 36 comments
Categories: uncategorized - Tags:

Party reform is high on the agenda of the ALP conference, being held in Sydney this weekend. While conferences do not ordinarily make riveting television, it is being carried live on Sky TV. Party reform is also high on the agenda of the NZLP  – President Moira Coatsworth announced that Labour would conduct an organisational review after the election in her speech to Labour’s Conference  in May. It was a prescient move.

In Australia, the ALP is a minority government, facing some huge challenges. Here the NZLP has just emerged from one of its worst defeats. Britain’s Labour Party also conducted a review after its defeat last year. All the English-speaking social democratic parties faces similar challenges, but there are also significant differences.

Defeat is never pleasant, but it can be salutary. In my view while the NZLP can learn much from our fraternal parties such as the ALP, UK Labour and the NDP in Canada, we can also learn from our opponents.  The National Party suffered an even worse defeat than Labour’s in 2002, going down to 22% of the party vote. Three years later they were ahead in both parties’ tracking polls of  right up till election day. Helen Clark and Don Brash would have both gone to bed on election night in 2005 thinking Don had got the job.

National contracted Steven Joyce to conduct their 2002  review. I don’t have a copy, but Gregory Stephens wrote a thesis about it – you can find it here. thesis  Joyce identified that National had not understood the significance of the party vote. It’s communication was disorganised as decision-making was decentralised to relatively autonomous regions. Joyce recommended centralising  decision-making authority, and moving to a corporate model. The party’s response was to ask him to become the manager, and the rest, as they say, is history. He certainly aligned their message of “change the government” in 2005, with the Exclusive Brethren using it too, apparently coincidentally. National Party decision-making is centralised and its messaging disciplined.

But it wasn’t just a corporate review. One of their shrewder moves was to bring in Judy Kirk as President, to reactivate the old National party grassroots. That has worked well.

I am certainly not advocating that the Labour Party adopt a corporatist or centralised organisation, but I do hope that Labour’s review process brings in some competence from outside the Party, and includes the parliamentary party as well as the constituency party. I was a member and observer of the Labour caucus for the best part of nine years, and in my view many of its habits and procedures are well overdue for overhaul.

The ALP with its factions entrenched in the unions is much more corporatist than the NZLP. Nine years ago Simon Crean commissioned ALP Premiers Bob Hawke and Simon Crean to review the ALP organisation. They made 17 key recommendations; I went to their special conference in Canberra and it boiled down to one – union delegate representation at the Federal conference should be reduced from 60% to 50%. Of the many party conferences I have attended, this was the most dispiriting and anodyne. The factions delivered the result, but no-one was happy.

Julia Gillard also commissioned party heavyweights to report – in this case former Deputy Premier John Faulkner, and former State Premiers Steve Bracks and Bob Carr. It is here Review2010Report But the priorities in her speech are about organising, not about representation rights.

We can set a recruiting challenge. We can adopt a community organising approach.. And we must lead in the new world of campaigning on line.. We can move to modern structures.. Allowing members to organise around policy areas that reflect their interests and ideas.. And offering new opportunities to participate in policy development through genuine forums which include parliamentary, union and directly elected representatives.. More opportunities to have a say and a direct vote in important decisions. . Starting with a National President, elected by members, to serve a full, three-year term.

These are all issues for the NZLP as well. The most important is the community organising approach. It was crucial in the lead-up to Labour’s win here in 1999; and to the ALP’s win against Howard’s Work Choices in Australia in 2007. New Zealand doesn’t have the same problems with opportunities for policy development – much good work has been done in recent years led by Phil Twyford and Jordan Carter. However the Australians in my view are better at systematic implementation.

I am sure our representatives will return from Sydney with many good ideas. Moira Coatsworth is also just the right person to reconnect with  the Labour party activists and the Greens as well.

One final thought – as I said at the start, the conference has been carried extensively on Sky. And there have been some lively debates. Former AMWU Secretary and now Senator Doug Cameron has cut to the heart of things as usual as world events vindicate his honesty. The ALP will debate same-sex marriage at its conference instead of in the caucus. Maybe it’s time for a rethink here – Labour’s 2010 conference would have made good television too.

 

 

36 comments on “Party reform”

  1. Colonial Viper 1

    Can Labour institute a ‘mindset reform’ amongst its members and activists? That’s a real challenge.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      What sort of mindset reform did you have in mind?

      Although, I doubt it. Ones mindset is a function of the environment that they grew up in and thus to change it they’d have to remake themselves.

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.1

        Things that you and I take for granted. For starters, Labour members have to recognise that their key voting base has been eroded away after 30 years of neoliberalism and pursuit of individual benefits instead of societal benefits.

        And that the pursuit of even more academic policy detail based on a BAU world is going nowhere.

        Basically the old comfortable world that Labour became a powerful force in is gone (and they helped usher that world out of existence); Labour principles and values are timeless but too many people don’t know or don’t care today.

        • burt 1.1.1.1

          CV

          You are deluded if you think the support base has been eroded by neoliberalism. Wake up you fool it’s been eroded by self serving interests who through their sense of entitlement to other peoples money make it obvious the best interests of the unions are not the best interests of the workers.

          • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.1.1

            Neo-liberalism is the embodiment of “self serving interests”.

            • burt 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes of course Draco, whatever you and your fellow 27% say must be true.

              • felix

                Are you still an ACT supporter, burt?

                • burt

                  No. I haven’t been for a few years. Sorry to steal your thunder on 1.2%….

                  • felix

                    Good for you burt. So when you were supporting a party polling 3-4-5%, did you consider those numbers to be a factor in the correctness or trueness of your (or their) ideas?

                    If not, why not? And why does the same logic not apply to Draco above (as long as we’re pretending Draco is a Labour supporter)?

                    • burt

                      I think you are misisng my point felix, perhaps I didn’t clearly communicate it. Perhaps I didn’t have on when I dismissed Draco.

                      But if you want to play the percentage game then consider that my departure from ACT coincided with the same from others. The remaining 1.2% are the ones insisting that they had it right and still have it right now. I’m not one of them for ACT. The remaining 27% are for Labour, I’m not one of them either. This isn’t about me felix.

                    • felix

                      So ACT were right and Labour were right at the same time.

                      And now they’re both wrong.

        • Nick C 1.1.1.2

          If Neo-liberalism really caused all the harm that you think it did then why surely this would increase Labours voting base?

          • burt 1.1.1.2.1

            Perhaps we have finally found something that is only bad when Labour do it ! makes a change….

          • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.2.2

            Nick C: neoliberalism fragmented organised workers and community groups, and many have bought the story line that they can only succeed or fail as atomized individuals.

            In other words, many have given up on the concept of society and of building a better community, and replaced it with a belief that markets and market forces will do it for them.

  2. J. Andels 2

    I do not agree with reforming Labour party lines along the Australian Labor Party model.
    I do believe that the labour party in Australia has not got in touch with it’s grass roots, the new generation born from those of Aboriginal, Lebananse, Greek and a multitude of others descent.
    The time has changed for them, and so it has for us.
    We have a future with NZ Labour, if they are willing to listen. It is not decided with the local delegates, but with the youth.
    The youth have clearly demanded a Green party vote, based on the conservation of our country and her resources. I am one of those, I voted Green because I did not believe the Labour party vote really protected us from foreign ownership that exploits our resources and our land, that we will be safe working a job without being fired at will, that Labour will encourage us to stay in New Zealand.
    A sign of good faith is all we need, but right now all I hear is the the cry for freedom in social affairs and to stop the country climbing down the gutter economically and conservationally.
    My family are :Labour party members, but none of them seem to have conviction.
    Convince us, please. Get us out to vote.

    • seeker 2.1

      @ J. Andels 3.03am

      “I voted Green because I did not believe the Labour party vote really protected us from foreign ownership that exploits our resources and our land, that we will be safe working a job without being fired at will, that Labour will encourage us to stay in New Zealand.”

      Why did you not believe? Did you not read the really detailed, principled policies Labour wrote addresssing these very issues.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        Policy wins only a minority of votes; heart, sincerity and vision wins the rest. So a simple question – where and what is Labour’s heart sincerity and vision?

        • Ari 2.1.1.1

          You forgot trust. I think a lot of people actually do believe in Labour’s vision, they just don’t trust them any more, or at the very least, they don’t trust them to win so don’t want to bother voting.

  3. Posters here tend not to like criticism (like anyone) and can react strongly – and sometimes with abuse – against it. But if they want to see a rebuild of a stronger Labour party they need to be prepared to look at what has gone wrong and what needs to be done about it.

    John Armstrong makes some tough but reasonable points.

    Labour was offering a better past. But no-one lives there any more. Labour had lost touch with middle New Zealand.

    The party kidded itself – as it had done since losing power – that voters would come “home” to Labour once they came to their senses and realised the overwhelming superiority of its policies and that John Key is not quite what the media cracked him up to be.

    This toxic combination of false hope and unfathomable arrogance was shattered last Saturday.

    False hope has been dashed but has still been evident continuing here in the week since the election, as has arrogance.

    Contributors to this blog can contribute to a Labour recovery if they take on board the many criticisms they are sure to hear, and if they explore how to deal with them.

    Aiming shots at the messengers simply feeds the alienation and ends up hitting their own feet. Again.

    It is in everyone’s interest to have a strong and credible government in waiting, so expect attention from people you would prefer just to keep dissing. Being ignored would be worse, then you will know you have a terminal problem.

    • seeker 3.1

      Pete George, you are unbelievable…………….

    • Colonial Viper 3.2

      PG – forget it mate, no one is voting for you, national politics or local politics. Frak off you insincere hanger on.

      • burt 3.2.1

        Realistically nobody is voting for Labour CV – you need to remember the following 4 points;

        1. Everyone has critics.
        2. Your critics are not your enemy.
        3. They are probably trying to help you
        4. At least some of them will actually be pointing to the solution you need to find.

        • Colonial Viper 3.2.1.1

          Last I looked 27% of voters supported Labour, far more than supported National in 2002.

          BTW I don’t take advice from insincere losers (not referring to you).

          • burt 3.2.1.1.1

            CV

            Winners, losers… critics are critics. FFS CV, Pete Gorge offered an opinion on Labour, he expressly noted that aiming shots at messengers is not the way to take on board some valuable criticism. You then hard out attack the messenger and continue to do so.

            When I posted the comment above I thought perhaps your hard out attack on Pete was a joke. So I ignored that and just reitterated what Pete had said in easily consumable chunks for you. But then you continue calling him an insincere loser. You are not getting this ‘reflect and adapt’ thing are you.

            • Ari 3.2.1.1.1.1

              I don’t particularly think his criticism is very valuable, and I have no real vested interest in Labour since I never voted for them and don’t intend to start.

              Labour supporters should be willing to take on board genuine opinions of voters that might actually support them, (which PG is not) and useful, well-founded criticism.

              That doesn’t mean everything some government troll or inane pundit says needs to be treated as sage advice. 😉

    • Hanswurst 3.3

      Sorry, but if there was ever an example of a well-meaning, out-of-touch irrelevancy, it would be John Armstrong. His claims that anyone else is “out of touch” should be viewed through that lens.

      Why is there even any suggestion that the political journalists would be more in touch than the politicians themselves?

    • Uturn 3.4

      You and your type define “arrogance” as the refusal to bow to your special style of condescension. Anyone who doesn’t take up your commands and ideas is “arrogant” if they have their own alternative and voice it in equal measure to your obscene instructions. For some reason you persist in believing that a fragile electoral win is proof of every further idea from same bunch as being universally true. Why you are tolerated here at all defies sensibility.

  4. AnnaLiviaPlurabella 4

    One important reform will be the defining of roles and responsibilities for the salaried staff: briefing the Press Gallery to run down David Cunliffe because he holds people to account is not in their job description.

  5. Craig Glen Eden 5

    It is not labour policy that is our main problem it was our Packaging. Cunliffe showed this morning on the Nation why he is the bloke who can rectify this, no wonder National want Shearer.

  6. Glenn 6

    Gillard has a salary higher than Obama and Cameron.
    http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/pollies-in-line-for-huge-pay-increase/story-e6freon6-1226210702704
    All the pollies in Oz have their snouts in the trough at the moment.
    Just an observation…

  7. randal 7

    All the party has to do is get back to its roots and find some people who are down to earth and know whats what.
    at the moment the people who run the focus groups seem to have control and have lost sight of the wider issues.
    Also the party needs to modernise its media stance. If tribesmen in remote parts of Pakistan and Tadjikistan can operate micropulse radio staions to get their message across then I dont see why the NZLP cant do it here and cut the slimeballs like radio skawbak and leighton smith off at the knees instead of allowing them unlimited airtime to psuh their rotten views.

  8. Policy Parrot 8

    All those who suggest fundamental policy changes in Labour’s manifesto to “come on board with the new times” ignore that it was largely these types of policies and Labour’s failure to effectively combat them (or enactment of them) that has lead to the depletion of Labour’s voting base. Yes, there has been some gentrification of the vote since the 1990s, when parties ostensibly opposed to the National Party won consistently over 60% of the vote.

    At the last election, Labour had a broad plan to lead the country forward – although I have some particular issue with some of the policy settings, the broad settings were approximately correct. The problem was that those opposed tended to cherry pick out the components they didn’t like, and promote these as “damaging to the economy”. Labour needs to review how these policies will be introduced and work in practice, but not dump them.

    There was also a reference to National in 2002, and how many commentators were concerned about the potential for the “death of National”. National certainly didn’t change their policy spots, they just became more cunning and conniving about where and what they said they would do. As randal said, it doesn’t help that many of the popular media commentators have no scruples in terms of their political positioning – NewstalkZB for instance would about as balanced as Fox News.

    Phil was right, Labour’s time will come again, but advancing that happy day is in the interest of all Kiwis.

  9. Greg 9

    Good to see my MA thesis is being referred to!

  10. Mike Smith 10

    It was a good one.

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    7 days ago
  • An odious bill
    The government has decided that someone has done Something Bad. But despite their belief, there seems to be no evidence that they have actually broken the law. So the government's solution is to pass a retrospective law allowing them to be punished anyway, on a lower standard of proof. If ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz There is a lot of discussion on the benefits of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
    I came across this song quite by accident. If it isn't one of Greta Thunberg's favourites - it should be.Video courtesy of YouTube.This post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    1 week ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
    COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING MYTH 1: Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate. FACT: The HadCRUT3 surface temperature index, produced by the Hadley Centre of the UK Met Office and the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, shows warming to 1878, cooling to 1911, ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    1 week ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Collins crushes climate
    An essay by Judith Collins MP reported on Carbon News yesterday seems to show an alarming shift in attitude within the National Party. Collins argues against the Zero Carbon Bill, the Paris Agreement, and downplays the magnitude of climate impacts. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015 and ratified ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    1 week ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
    The Royal Commission on abuse in care is very significant for the disability community. For many decades last century, thousands of disabled children, and adults who managed to survive, were locked away from families and communities. This was not for anything they had done, but for the perceived threat their ...
    1 week ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is this study legit? 5 questions to ask when reading news stories of medical research
    Hassan Vally, La Trobe University Who doesn’t want to know if drinking that second or third cup of coffee a day will improve your memory, or if sleeping too much increases your risk of a heart attack? We’re invested in staying healthy and many of us are interested in reading ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
      “There can be no such thing as kaupapa Māori political parties or politics in Aotearoa” (Willie Jackson, Labour Party (2017). Māori TV, General/List Election Special) I begin with that claim because at the time, I was confounded at first that it fell out of Willie Jackson’s mouth, and then ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter
    https://mailchi.mp/7d9133add053/closing-the-gap-october-2019-newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago

  • Dashboard tracks housing progress
    The Government’s Housing Dashboard released today confirms record numbers of state houses are under construction and shows the Government build programme is gaining momentum.  “After nine years of inaction, and a hands-off attitude from the previous government we’re starting to see things move in the right direction for housing,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    48 mins ago
  • Ministerial Statement on the International Convention Centre fire
    Mr Speaker, I wish to make a ministerial statement relating to the Auckland fire. The Government is closely monitoring the situation with the fire at the NZ International Convention Centre and is thankful that everyone is now safe. Firefighters are doing an incredible job managing the fire and bringing it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Government invests in Te Reo, environmental data research
    The Government is investing in ambitious research that will digitise Te Reo, grow the low-carbon protein efficient aquaculture industry, help interpret environmental trends, and large data sets says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. The four projects range from teaching Siri to speak Te Reo to crunching large environmental ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Government announces next steps as part of a comprehensive plan to fix skills gap
    A new education-to-employment brokerage service to strengthen connections between local employers and schools. Funding for more trades focused ‘speed-dating’ events to connect schools with employers. Promotional campaign to raise profile of vocational education. The Government is taking action to increase the number of young people taking up vocational education and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Corrections Amendment Bill passes third reading
    A Bill to improve prison security and ensure the fair, safe, and humane treatment of people in prison while upholding public safety has passed its third reading. Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says the Corrections Amendment Bill makes a number of changes to ensure the Corrections Act 2004 is fit for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Ngāi Tahu CEO appointed to NZ-China Council
    Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, has selected Arihia Bennett MNZM, Chief Executive Officer of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, as the Te Puni Kōkiri appointed representative on the New Zealand-China Council. The New Zealand-China Council (the Council) was established in 2012 as a New Zealand led and funded organisation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Southern Response claims move to EQC
    Responsibility for processing the small number of Southern Response claims still to be settled will be transferred to EQC by the end of the year. “As claim numbers reduce, it no longer makes sense for the Crown to have two organisations processing the remaining Canterbury claims,” Grant Robertson says. “Since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Bowel screening starts in Whanganui
    Health Minister David Clark is encouraging Whanganui residents to take up the opportunity for free bowel screening, which can detect cancer early when it’s easier to treat.   Over the next two years 12,000 Whanganui locals, aged 60 to 74 will be invited to participate in the National Bowel Screening ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Pacific Peoples Minister to attend Our Ocean Conference in Norway
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, heads to Oslo today to represent New Zealand at the sixth Our Ocean Conference, which is being hosted by the Norwegian Government from the 23-24 October. “The Our Ocean Conference mobilises real action on issues like marine plastic pollution and the impacts of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government announces 27 percent increase in Trades Academy places
    Two secondary-school initiatives are being expanded as part of the Government’s plan to see more young New Zealanders take up a trade to help close the skills gap.   This includes the largest single increase in Trades Academy places in recent years. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures Conference: Connection...
    Session 4: Pacific Connectivity – Youth, Media and New Opportunities   Kia ora tatou katoa and Warm Pacific greetings to one and all. Representatives of Tainui, the local people of the land, or manawhenua – the indigenous peoples of this area – have welcomed you this morning in accordance with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago