Positive Things

Written By: - Date published: 2:27 pm, February 16th, 2014 - 21 comments
Categories: democratic participation, drugs, electoral systems, Environment, global warming, Parliament, political alternatives - Tags: , , , ,

Nice to see that Russell Brand’s political thought is evolving. In contrast to his stance on a fairly recent interview with Jeremy Paxman where he took aim at the entire concept of democracy, he’s now more targeted insofar as he now states:- “… I’m a man who doesn’t believe in parliamentary democracy – thinks it’s a charade – but what I want is change around this issue (UK drug policy) and I’m prepared to use the materials in front of me.”

Good to hear that he is no longer intent to throw the baby out with the bathwater and that he can walk and chew gum at the same time.

The entire interview, with Jon Snow is here. Having watched it, I can’t square the negative framing by printed media with what I saw. The interview was a tad confrontational and, sure, Russell Brand is excitable. But I think he did well and made some important points.

Meanwhile, the Leader of the Labour Party in the UK seems to be bringing AGW in from the political cold.

In 2012 we had the second wettest winter on record and this winter is a one in 250-year event. If you keep throwing the dice and you keep getting sixes then the dice are loaded. Something is going on….

…The science is clear. The public know there is a problem. But, because of political division in Westminster, we are sleepwalking into a national security crisis on climate change. The terrible events of the last few weeks should serve as a wake-up call for us all.

Nice to think that he might walk the walk and that if he doesn’t, overwhelming pressure will be applied by ordinary people via the type of means that Russell Brand advocates.

21 comments on “Positive Things ”

  1. adam 1

    I always liked Russell’s comments – yeah they were not completely thought out – but he did have the anger of a working bloke in mind when he spoke. Yeah he still not the most articulate voice for change, but he is saying there are different ways and different approaches. In some ways that is better than Obarma, who can articulate a liberal approach rather well – shame his voting record nor his time as president reflect his liberal rhetoric at all. Back to Russell – he has been introduced to real democracy and me thinks he likes it!

    • weka 1.1

      I don’t know, I think he is articulate, he’s just not slick. I haven’t paid much attention to him, but I watched the interview and understood pretty well what he is on about. He’s a bit emotional and a bit theatric, but that seems refreshing to me.

    • Bill 1.2

      The anger and passion aren’t in doubt. I also believe he’s articulate enough and fairly good at ‘thinking on his feet’ too. Now if he could just get his around the fact that democracy is developed by the involvement and participation of all (and present that fact back to these establishment interviewers) then he could stop being all defensive about not being able to present a finalised blueprint for ‘what will be’….and demolish their position by highlighting the democratic deficits in their scenario.

      When you have been through and rejected all the scenarios that are not democratic, you are left with what is democratic. I know you know this and that I’m just stating the obvious, but hey.

      • just saying 1.2.1

        When you have been through and rejected all the scenarios that are not democratic, you are left with what is democratic.

        I fear this route could end up taking too long. I’m sure there are a thousand non-democratic ways of being that haven’t been dreamt-up yet, let alone put into action, and even more good intentions that veer off track and keep on going. I don’t have the answers, but feel we might need to be a bit more proactive than just rejecting the wrong.

        How we go about that, I’m not sure. I just hope we have a solid foundation of alternative communities and networks working together when the shit is finally seen to have hit the fan, because the ensuing panic is likely to foster even less democracy in the ways we organise ourselves.

        • Bill 1.2.1.1

          I fear this route could end up taking too long.

          I disagree. I reckon it’s probably the quickest way. It’s not a case of actually having to enact all undemocratic scenarios and then reject them before opting for democratic ones.

          Take an example.

          How about I just order things and tell everyone what to do? Do we even have to try that one out to know it’s not democratic? No. Well, how about a committee of people – experts or whatever – ordering things and telling everyone what to do? Do we have to try that, or do we already know that it contains the same strongly anti-democratic elements of the first scenario and so can be discarded ‘off the bat’? I think so. Well, how about we elect a committee of experts or whatever and maybe have them order things and telling people what to do for a limited time, of say, three years? Is that any different? No. So we can reject that too….and so on.

          Bottom line – any hint or sniff of ‘power over’ being exercised by some clique is, obviously, not democratic and so can be rejected out of hand.

          But before people get silly on it, I’ll throw this in. If I’m wanting to build something, then of course, I’ll rely to some extent or other on information from a person with building skill/knowledge. That’s just common sense. But does my relying on their skill or knowledge then grant that person any right or licence to exercise any power over me in either that situation or any other? No, of course not.

          So given the admittedly rather quickly thrown together examples above, is it safe to say that any hierarchy that somehow or other grants a right to exercise ‘power over’ precludes the possibility of democracy? I’d say so.

          So, whatever structures we employ or institutions we develop, they must be free of such hierarchies if we want democracy. And – well, hierarchies, whether institutional or informal, just ain’t that difficult to recognise and so any proposition that would lead to their formation can be rejected.

          Simple. And quick too 😉

          Oh yeah – and the bullshit I still hear from time to time how *this* hierarchical arrangement will somehow be different due to checks and balances (thinking variations on the theme of ‘democratic centralism’) – well, it’s up to the proponents of such scenarios to conclusively demonstrate the democratic integrity of their scheme. Just one identifiable glitch or weakness is all that’s required to reject it and move on.

          • just saying 1.2.1.1.1

            That’s not quite what I meant.

            It’s about the idea of democracy arising from stopping using the more overt forms non-democratic arrangements currently take, as opposed to someting, and I don’t know what, more proactive. It’s also about the danger of good intentions drifting into informal hierarchies with kinds of hegemony of their own.

  2. Rogue Trooper 2

    always a worthwhile read Bill., and a striking masthead.

    • Bill 2.1

      Thanks Rogue. Good to see you back here btw.

      • Rogue Trooper 2.1.1

        Too Kind.
        apparently Abe is quoted as saying “Determine that a thing can and shall be done, and we shall find a way”. kinda like these 2014 ‘Oil Tour Protests’, Well, sort-of. 😀 . And if you are inclined to Bill, check out that Nicholas Carr’s The Shallows ; a great ‘heads-up’, considering the plasticity of the brain. 😀

  3. weka 3

    I don’t know what the negative framing has been, but I can’t see the problem with the interview either. Apart from the interviewer getting hung up on the ‘don’t vote’ stuff and trying to force an admission of something from Brand rather than using it as an opportunity to explore what Brand is on about.

    Love the bit in the middle where Brand parodies politics “Sorry everyone, everythings fine. There is no poverty! There is no climate change! Those floods aren’t real!”

    • Bill 3.1

      The negative framing, well, y’know, when the linked article is this dismissive “Indeed, for much of the interview the presenter treated Brand like a boring schoolboy, appearing to suffer through the moments when Brand babbled on (occasionally getting so carried away with his own hyperbole he confused his words) by fixing him with a long-suffering stare.”

      Or the Huffington Post headlining “…Comedian Loses His Temper During Heated Talks On Drugs And Revolution”

      Or ‘the dailymail – “Comedian meets his match…”

      • Rogue Trooper 3.1.1

        lolz

      • karol 3.1.2

        “Comedian meets his match…”

        Has Jon Snow slipped that far in his media role?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.3

        I didn’t get that from Snow. He says exactly what he’s up to from the start. He wanted to get Brand to address an apparent contradiction in his position. Brand eventually, after much encouragement, did so, rather eloquently, but he was clearly there to push the drug law reform message. It was a good interview though.

  4. karol 4

    Jon Snow looks like he’s being deliberately hick.

    He’s reduced representative democracy to voting in elections. It also includes (in theory/principle at least) lobbying, protests, grassroots campaigns, circulating ideas, petitions, engaging people at the grass roots in debates, etc. Anyone can participate in such things, whether they vote or not.

    Brand is focused on these other democratic processes, that are also legitimate channels in our society.

  5. Yoza 5

    I saw the Paxman interview, I didn’t get the sense that Russell Brand was anti-democracy. It seemed quite clear he was condemning the established boundaries of what can be acceptably framed as democracy. In both instances, Paxman and Snow, the interviewers were determinedly set on getting Brand to recant and accept the kind of perversity that presents the likes of Tony Blair and Ed Miliband as the only alternatives.

    Brand is correct when he says voting in Western style parliamentary ‘democracies’ will not fundamentally change a system of social organisation which has been specifically designed to marginalise the general population while concentrating participation in decision making processes in the hands of the wealthy and the powerful. The illegal invasion of Iraq and global warming are probably the clearest current examples of an existing gulf between what the established elite expect the general population to believe and what your average person actually believes.

    The hierarchy of New Zealand’s security apparatus didn’t care about the democratically elected Clark government telling them they weren’t to join the invasion of Iraq, the bosses in Washington whistled and their New Zealand poodles came running.
    And how many news items about the storms in Britain or the US mention a link with anthropogenic global warming. There is a noticeably concerted effort in anglospheric media circles to minimise or completely ignore the effect human industrial activity is having on the planet’s climate.

    Brand’s campaign to institutionalise a sane approach to drug use is another lesson in what established interests have predetermined to be unacceptable thought crimes. Drugs are illegal so our domestic security forces have a pretext to kick around anyone who doesn’t conform to whatever the established order decides is tolerable behaviour. As I recall, one of the pretexts used to persecute Aziz Choudry and company was suspicion of drug use.

    I hope Brand gets more of these opportunities. He is quick on his feet, he is entertaining and he has a greater chance of getting the otherwise disengaged to consider the political paradigm in which they are ensnared.

    • karol 5.1

      Yoza, I agree with your point about voting in the current UK system will bring little change. It is more marked in the UK First Past the Post system than in NZ’s MMP system – though the dominance of the two main parties has become a problem as both have been captured by neoliberalism to a greater or lesser extent.

      It wasn’t always as bad as it is now – the Westminster system did provide a bit more of choice in times past.

      On reporting of the UK floods. The news coverage of the current UK & US storms does, firstly focus on the here and now of the storms’ impacts. The test will be if such storms raise awareness of climate issues in the long term. One storm alone is not evidence of climate change, but the increase in frequency and extent of severe weather does.

      I have seen some news reports of the storms that do raise the topic of climate change:

      This one from the UK Mirror:

      Meanwhile, a poll by ComRes for the Independent on Sunday and Sunday Mirror found that just 59% of people thought the Government was “beginning to get a grip” on the flooding.

      Some 48% said the storms had made them more convinced that climate change was happening, compared to 30% who said their views had not changed.

      An Opinium poll for the Observer found 51% thought Mr Cameron had responded badly to the floods.

      Some 51% of those questioned said they believed issues around climate change and global warming caused the floods while 24% did not take that view, and 20% were neutral.

      So this news organisation was raising the issue by polling about it.

      The Guardian has also printed an article about it by Nicholas Stern:

      The record rainfall and storm surges that have brought flooding across the UK are a clear sign that we are already experiencing the impacts of climate change.

      Many commentators have suggested that we are suffering from unprecedented extreme weather. There are powerful grounds for arguing that this is part of a trend.

      • Yoza 5.1.1

        I was thinking about the news coming through agencies like Associated Press or the BBC. I’m not saying there are no stories about climate change at all, but when it is discussed it is out in the margins like Comment is Free in the Guardian or if it is allowed it is relegated to a couple of paragraphs in a large screed of text. More often than not anthropogenic global warming is presented as an inconclusive theory dividing the scientific community, rather than the reality of a rigorously pursued field of scientific research conclusively demonstrating humanity is responsible for destabilising the climate to a point where it threatens the survival of the species.

  6. Mike S 6

    ” In 2012 we had the second wettest winter on record and this winter is a one in 250-year event. If you keep throwing the dice and you keep getting sixes then the dice are loaded. Something is going on….

    …The science is clear. The public know there is a problem. But, because of political division in Westminster, we are sleepwalking into a national security crisis on climate change. The terrible events of the last few weeks should serve as a wake-up call for us all.

    Nice to think that he might walk the walk and that if he doesn’t, overwhelming pressure will be applied by ordinary people via the type of means that Russell Brand advocates.”

    =============================================================

    “One of the Met Office’s most senior experts yesterday made a dramatic intervention in the climate change debate by insisting there is no link between the storms that have battered Britain and global warming.

    Mat Collins, a Professor in climate systems at Exeter University, said the storms have been driven by the jet stream – the high-speed current of air that girdles the globe – which has been ‘stuck’ further south than usual.

    Professor Collins told The Mail on Sunday: ‘There is no evidence that global warming can cause the jet stream to get stuck in the way it has this winter. If this is due to climate change, it is outside our knowledge.’

    His statement carries particular significance because he is an internationally acknowledged expert on climate computer models and forecasts, and his university post is jointly funded by the Met Office.

    Prof Collins is also a senior adviser – a ‘co-ordinating lead author’ – for the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).”

    • karol 6.1

      Here is a clarification from Prof Collins:

      Professor Collins made clear that he believes it is likely global warming could lead to higher rainfall totals, because a warmer atmosphere can hold more water. But he said this has nothing to do with the storm conveyor belt.

      • Yoza 6.1.1

        The guys over at Media Lens make an interesting observation:

        A careful analysis by Carbon Brief of 3,064 flood-related newspapers stories, published between the start of December and 10 February, makes this clear. Their stark conclusion is that over 93 per cent of press stories did not mention climate change (never mind the role of humans in disturbing the delicate balance of climate).”

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    Completed reads for February: Tarzan of the Apes, by E.R. Burroughs The Lost World, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle The Poison Belt, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Struwwelpeter: Merry Stories and Funny Pictures, by Heinrich Hoffman The Moon Hoax, by Richard Adams Locke The Strange Voyage and Adventures of ...
    5 days ago
  • Aoteraoa, Ukraine, and Gaza
    Today the government designated the political wing of Hamas as a terrorist entity, making supporting them a criminal offence. I honestly don't know much about Hamas' organisation, or how involved its politicians were in planning its crimes in October last year, but when Israel is actively carrying out a genocide ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • ETS review will be good news (we think) for the forest sector but govt gets tough with Hamas and Isr...
    Buzz from the Beehive When the Luxon government took office last year, forest owners and investors were among the myriads of interest groups who pressed incoming ministers with pleadings, urgings and advice – typically self-serving –  for change. The forestry bunch hoped the new government would give clearer direction on ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Tougher Love.
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    5 days ago
  • The Clue Is In The Name.
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    5 days ago
  • Another forced break.
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    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • BRYCE EDWARDS:  How Wellington City Council got captured by vested interests
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    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the Newshub/Smokefree twin fiascos
    H</spanere’s a tale of two sunset industries. One has a track record of quality investigative reporting, and sound reportage of the 24/7 news cycle. The other sunset industry peddles a deadly substance that kills and injures tens of thousands of New Zealanders every year, while imposing significant annual costs on ...
    5 days ago
  • RBNZ's dovish pivot revives rate cut hopes
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    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • That was Then, This is Now #32 – What's the difference between aluminium and democracy?
    ..Thanks for reading Frankly Speaking ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.That was then…Rio Tinto will not reimburse the $30 million Government subsidy it received to keep Tiwai Point open, in spite of posting a $3.7 billion 2013 profit.[…]…if Rio Tinto had closed straightaway and ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • A Market Model for Intercity Rail
    The North Island Main Trunk rail line between Auckland and Wellington is 680km long, mostly electrified, and low speed for intercity rail (80-100kph). It’s a major public asset, but woefully underutilised. How can we work this asset harder, to deliver way more benefits for our country and our people? This ...
    Greater AucklandBy Patrick Reynolds
    5 days ago
  • Redundancies Bite.
    We all knew this government meant redundancies - lots of them. National highlighted they’d be taking a scalpel to government departments, cutting them to the bone. ACT fantasized about going deeper.Thousands losing their jobs in a sector that won’t be hiring any time soon. I could make a joke here ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Tough choices on climate change for new government
    Slowly but inexorably, the country is getting to the point where it is going to have to make some tough choices about actually lowering greenhouse gas emissions rather than planting or buying its way out of them. Prime Minister Christopher Luxon, at the weekend, removed any last hope that climate ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • That was Then, This is Now #31 – Urgent for me, but not for thee?
    ..Thanks for reading Frankly Speaking ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.That was then…“In Parliament today, Labour was pushed to justify their use of urgency to rush through a Bill to get rid of a public veto on Māori wards, and they couldn’t,” National’s Local ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Rattus Supermarketicus: Countdown Reopens
    So my infamously rat-infested local supermarket was finally able to re-open today, after spending a good two and a half weeks closed. https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/510363/countdown-dunedin-south-reopens-after-rat-infestation I went in for a look this evening, having heard that they were offering chocolates earlier in the day. I was disappointed. No chocolates. ...
    6 days ago
  • Clearly still no adults in this Chaos Cabinet, aiming to sell Aotearoa off to the highest bidders…
    Grant Roberston has left the Labour team in Parliament, Efeso Collins tragically died at the outset of what was surely to be a stellar career as an MP… a heavy result last year, losses and a tragedy to start this year. That overall sense of tragedy is not limited ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    6 days ago
  • Productivity Commission gone tomorrow, Māori Health Authority gone in June – so what should we do...
    The Productivity Commission will cease operations tomorrow, to make way for the new Ministry for Regulation. On the same day, the Waitangi Tribunal will begin an urgent inquiry into the government’s proposal to disestablish the Māori Health Authority. But legislation passed under urgency by Parliament will result in the authority being ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • QUESTIONNAIRE NEW ZEALAND
    So you want to be a member of this exciting new government, eh? Good thinking! There’s obviously no future in journalism. We’re not just hiring any old comms person though. We want someone with the right attitude and MOJO. So grab a pen and fill out this questionnaire will you? ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Another secret OIA “consultation”
    When the previous government decided in 2018 to review the OIA, the Ministry of Justice decided to do the entire thing in secret, planning a "targeted consultation" with a secret, hand-picked group of lawyers, bloggers and commentators. Because obviously, wider civil society has no interest in the operation of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Puff! And before you can get through a packet of 20, Parliament will have stubbed out parts of Labo...
    Buzz from the Beehive Health dominated the government’s announcements over the past 24 hour or so, at the same time as Parliament was debating legislation to abolish the Maori Health Authority and repeal parts of the previous government’s planned changes to regulate smoked tobacco. Health Minister Shane Reti brandished a ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • Journalism in New Zealand Is Collapsing
    Hi,I was not intending to send out a Webworm today, and I hate that I am having to write about this.After nearly 35 years of broadcasting, the TV newsroom in New Zealand that was my home for about a decade is set to close in June.Some of my closest and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • A revolting breach of Te Tiriti
    In 2019, the Waitangi Tribunal released a preliminary report in the Wai 2575 inquiry, finding pervasive inequities in the New Zealand health system which systematically disadvantaged Māori, in breach of Ti Tiriti O Waitangi. It recommended the creation of an independent Māori Health Authority as one way of remedying these ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Bishop wants house prices to halve vs income
    TL;DR: Housing, Infrastructure and RMA Reform minister Minister Chris Bishop gave the new Government’s most important and ambitious speech of its first 100 days yesterday, pledging to flood cities with land for homes and help give councils new revenue to pay for the water and transport infrastructure needed to build ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Lyin' Luxon
    All we want is a touch of truthnot cue-card words for the polling booththis ballhead man and his MacDonalds wisdomselling soap or a new tax systemSo begin the lyrics for the new single, Lyin’ Luxon (and his tobacco goons)”, from Darren Watson - released just this morning. You can check ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Albo gives Luxon a big invite
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon gets his first big foreign affairs opportunity next week when he travels to Melbourne for the 50th Anniversary of Australia’s partnership with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has invited the heads of all ten members for a special summit. ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • Of Mining Interests and the West Coast-Tasman Result: Look at the Split Vote
    The various New Zealand election donations have been disclosed, and one Jonathan Milne has noticed the role of mining interests in backing an independent candidate on the West Coast: https://newsroom.co.nz/2024/02/23/big-coal-company-bought-west-coast-election-campaign/ The article goes on to suggest that the independent candidate’s performance – garnering some 5903 votes – was key ...
    7 days ago
  • At a glance – Is Greenland gaining or losing ice?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    7 days ago
  • Dark money has entered the New Zealand electoral scene at unprecedented levels
    Radio NZ’s Farah Hancock has analysed the Electoral Commission returns of money paid to influence the 2023 NZ General Election. Her article $2m surge in election campaign spending by third-party groups (RNZ) shows that as well as the huge donations-directly-to-the-parties imbalance, previously reported, a large amount of untraceable dark money ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    7 days ago
  • I remember better days
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    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • No, it isn’t a surprise – the government is disestablishing the Māori Health Authority (just a...
    Latest from the Beehive The mainstream news media have been grimly auguring this news for  the past few days under headings such as… Axing Māori Health Authority before hearing ‘disrespectful’ — expert (One News); Coalition Government to forge ahead with repeal of smokefree laws, Māori Health Authority this week ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    7 days ago
  • BRYCE EDWARDS: NZ elections are being Americanised with “dark money” flowing into campaign grou...
    Bryce Edwards writes –  Elections in the United States are dominated by big money. But what isn’t commonly understood is that most of it is raised and spent, not by the political parties and candidates for office, but by special interest groups who run their own election campaigns to ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    7 days ago

  • GPS 2024: Investing in reliable public transport
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has confirmed targeted investment of more than $2 billion over the next three years for public transport projects and services, as part of the draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport.  “Delivering reliable, effective, and efficient public transport is a priority for the Coalition Government. The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: Keeping New Zealanders safer on our roads
    The Coalition Government will keep New Zealanders safe on our roads with a stronger focus on road policing and enforcement, investment in new and safe roading infrastructure, and targeting the leading contributors to fatal crashes, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “The draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport outlines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: Keeping New Zealanders safer on our roads
    The Coalition Government will keep New Zealanders safe on our roads with a stronger focus on road policing and enforcement, investment in new and safe roading infrastructure, and targeting the leading contributors to fatal crashes, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “The draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport outlines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: 15 new Roads of National Significance
    The Coalition Government’s priority for investment in the draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport is to support economic growth and productivity and ensure our land transport system allows people and freight to move quickly and safely, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Delivering on commitments in our Coalition Agreements, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: 15 new Roads of National Significance
    The Coalition Government’s priority for investment in the draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport is to support economic growth and productivity and ensure our land transport system allows people and freight to move quickly and safely, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Delivering on commitments in our Coalition Agreements, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: New $500 million Pothole Prevention Fund
    The Coalition Government will increase investment in road maintenance, including establishing a new $500 million Pothole Prevention Fund to tackle the record number of potholes on our roads, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “The draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport changes the way we invest in road maintenance, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: New $500 million Pothole Prevention Fund
    The Coalition Government will increase investment in road maintenance, including establishing a new $500 million Pothole Prevention Fund to tackle the record number of potholes on our roads, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “The draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport changes the way we invest in road maintenance, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: Over $20 billion to get transport back on track
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has released the draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport, outlining the Coalition Government’s plan to build and maintain a transport system that enables people to get to where they need to go quickly and safely.  “Over the next three years, our investment of around ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • GPS 2024: Over $20 billion to get transport back on track
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has released the draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) on Land Transport, outlining the Coalition Government’s plan to build and maintain a transport system that enables people to get to where they need to go quickly and safely.  “Over the next three years, our investment of around ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Remand prisoners to receive rehabilitation support
    The coalition Government has taken the first steps to ensure prisoners on remand can access the rehabilitation and reintegration support they need to turn their lives around, says Corrections Minister Mark Mitchell.   “The number of people on remand has increased by 146 per cent over the past 10 years. With ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ongoing security plan will help keep hospital EDs safe
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says a continuation of increased security measures at eight key hospitals around New Zealand reflects the Government’s ongoing commitment to the safety of healthcare staff, and patients. “I’m very pleased Health NZ – Te Whatu Ora have been able to confirm that additional security support ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government supports safer digital transactions
    The Government supports the recommendations of the Finance and Expenditure Committee reports on bank scam processes, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Andrew Bayly says. “Scams are becoming more sophisticated and causing a growing number of vulnerable Kiwis significant emotional harm and financial loss. “Altogether, nearly $200 million was lost to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government congratulates JPs on centenary
    Associate Minister of Justice Nicole McKee has extended her congratulations to the Royal Federation of New Zealand Justices’ Associations on its centenary this year. The occasion is being celebrated at the Federation’s annual AGM and Conference, which opens in Wellington today.  “Justices of the Peace (JPs) play a vital role ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government going after gangs’ guns with FPOs
    The Government is continuing its work to restore law and order, announcing new measures that will enable police to crack down on gangs through Firearms Prohibition Orders (FPOs).  “Firearms are being illegally used by gangs to intimidate, to commit violent crime in support of their profit making, and to initiate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Open ocean salmon farm a win for the economy
    The final approval of New Zealand King Salmon’s Blue Endeavour open ocean aquaculture project is a significant step for New Zealand’s aquaculture, and a win for the economy, Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones says.  “Blue Endeavour will be the first open ocean aquaculture salmon farm in New Zealand. It’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ – UAE trade agreement consultation begins
    Following a meeting with UAE Trade Minister Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi at the WTO Ministerial Conference in Abu Dhabi, Trade Minister Todd McClay has launched public consultation for a trade agreement between New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).   “The UAE is a top-20 export market for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Minister thanks Public Service Commissioner
    Public Service Minister Nicola Willis has thanked retiring Public Service Commissioner Peter Hughes for his 43 years of service. Mr Hughes retires today, after serving eight years as Public Service Commissioner.  “Peter Hughes is an outstanding public servant who has served many governments, regardless of their political leaning, with professionalism and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tourism data shows determination of sector
    New tourism data out today shows the continued importance of tourism to the New Zealand economy as tourism steps up to become our second-biggest export earner, Tourism Minister Matt Doocey says. “The Tourism Satellite Account shows how strongly tourism rebounded post-pandemic with total tourism expenditure in New Zealand of $37.7b ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Housing Minister thanks outgoing Kāinga Ora Chair
    Housing Minister Chris Bishop has today thanked outgoing Kāinga Ora – Homes & Communities Chair Vui Mark Gosche for his many years of public service. “Mr Gosche tendered his resignation as Chair yesterday evening. He will remain a member of the Board until the end of March,” says Housing Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New sanctions package against Russia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced a new package of sanctions as part of the ongoing international sanction response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.   The new sanctions are:   Implementation of the G7-plus price cap on Russian-origin oil; making explicit the prohibition on exporting restricted ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Travel bans on extremist Israeli settlers
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced travel bans on a number of extremist Israeli settlers who have committed violent attacks against Palestinians in the West Bank.   “New Zealand is seriously concerned by the significant increase in extremist violence perpetrated by Israeli settlers against Palestinian populations in recent months. This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ designates entirety of Hamas as terrorist entity
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced today the designation of Hamas in its entirety as a terrorist entity.   “The terrorist attacks by Hamas in October 2023 were brutal and we have unequivocally condemned them,” Mr Luxon says.    Following these attacks, then Prime Minister Chris Hipkins commissioned advice from officials about designating the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government announces independent review of forestry ETS costs
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay has today announced an independent review into the forestry component of the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) Register to ensure it is efficient and cost-effective. “Up and down the country forestry owners have been raising concerns about the excessive costs that have been imposed upon them by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Access barriers to PET-CT scans removed
    New Zealanders now have the same access to PET-CT scans no matter where they live, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says. Health New Zealand - Te Whatu Ora has approved funding an updated national set of criteria that will allow for about 1,000 more PET-CT scans a year to be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines’ alliance extended
    Associate Transport Minister Matt Doocey announced today that the Government has extended Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines’ strategic alliance for another five years. “Reauthorising this strategic partnership means that passengers flying in and out of New Zealand will continue to have access to a wide range of flights and destinations,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Health system reforms need further action
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says the latest report into New Zealand’s health reforms shows a few benefits, but overall once again demonstrates a lack of leadership by the previous Labour government.  The Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) report released today was commissioned by the previous government to provide an independent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Parallel assessment means new medicines assessed sooner
    Pharmac is changing its process so it can assess a funding application at the same time Medsafe is assessing the application for regulatory approval. This means that medicines will be able to be considered for funding sooner in New Zealand. “Access to medicines is a crucial part of many Kiwis’ ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Smokefree Amendment Bill Introduced
    The Government has today introduced an Amendment Bill that will repeal three parts of the previous Government’s planned changes to regulate smoked tobacco. “The Coalition Government is committed to the Smokefree 2025 goal, but we are taking a different regulatory approach to reducing smoking rates and the harm from smoking,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Targeted support for young people
    Recently allocated Ministry of Youth Development funding will support more than 6700 young people to receive targeted youth development support to remain in education or transition to further training or employment and improve their wellbeing, Youth Minister Matt Doocey says.  Funding of $10.69 million will be allocated to 34 community-based ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Reshaping the health system to bring Māori health closer to home
    Legislation that will disestablish the Māori Health Authority will be introduced in Parliament today, heralding the start of a new vision for Māori health says Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti.  “We have said we will bring healthcare for all New Zealanders closer to the home and closer to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to the Wellington Chamber of Commerce
    Acknowledgements Good morning. Can I start by acknowledging Simon and the team at the Chamber. Thanks for the invitation to be here today. Introduction In October last year New Zealanders voted for change. The Coalition government was elected with a clear mandate to rebuild the economy and reduce the cost ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ welcomes Australia and Brazil to agreements
    New Zealand has welcomed Australia to the Inclusive Trade Action Group (ITAG) and Australia and Brazil to the Global Trade and Gender Arrangement (GTAGA) Minister for Trade Todd McClay says.  As the current chair of ITAG and GTAGA, Minister McClay hosted the signing ceremony and issued the Abu Dhabi Joint ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Inquiry announced into school property
    The Government will conduct a Ministerial Inquiry to address problems with the school property system where the scope of property works planned was unrealistic and unaffordable. “The coalition Government has inherited a school property system bordering on crisis,” Education Minister Erica Stanford says. “There have been a number of cost escalations ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Chair for Guardians of NZ Superannuation
    Company director and investor John Williamson has been appointed as the new Chair of the Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation, the Crown entity that oversees the NZ Super Fund and the Elevate NZ Venture Capital Fund, Finance Minister Nicola Willis announced today.  Mr Williamson will take up his new position ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Northland open for business as critical works to repair SH1 Brynderwyn Hills begin
    The Government is encouraging New Zealanders to support, visit, and explore Northland, as the closure and detour of SH1 at the Bryderwyn Hills begins, and critical repair work by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) gets underway, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Many regions across the country suffered extensive and devastating ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government backs police to crackdown on gangs
    The coalition Government is restoring law and order by providing police new tools to crack down on criminal gangs, says Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Police Minister Mark Mitchell.  “Over the last five years gangs have recruited more than 3000 members, a 51 per cent increase. At the same time, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Northland’s new Kāeo Bridge officially open
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed the official opening of the new State Highway 10 (SH10) Kāeo Bridge, which will improve safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Far North. “This is an important piece of infrastructure for the Northland region that will help members of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government grants $6.6 million to clean up old landfill sites
    The Government has granted $6.6 million to clean up four historic New Zealand landfill and dump sites vulnerable to extreme weather events and coastal erosion. At the BlueGreens Forum in Paihia today Environment Minister Penny Simmonds said that the Contaminated Sites Remediation Fund grants will go towards fixing former landfills ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Dry weather triggers extra support for farmers and growers across the top of the South Island
    The coalition Government is providing support for farmers and growers as dry conditions worsen across the top of the South Island. “Conditions on the ground across the Marlborough, Tasman, and Nelson districts are now extremely dry and likely to get worse in the coming months,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Trade Minister heads to Abu Dhabi for key WTO negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay travels to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates for the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) today, to take up his role as Vice Chair of the negotiations. The Ministerial Conference is the highest decision-making body within the WTO and meets every ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago

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