Public service deserves praise for earthquake response

Written By: - Date published: 5:12 pm, September 5th, 2010 - 35 comments
Categories: public services - Tags: ,

After every emergency come the media articles that accuse the civil defence system of failing. This time the well-known emergency relief experts at the Herald were passing judgment within a day:

“It was not until about 6am that the Ministry of Civil Defence posted its first alert, and announced it had activated the National Crisis Management Centre.

The first official police statement came a few minutes later, at 6.05am, from Inspector John Doherty.

A few short sentences – damaged buildings, ambulance reports of minor injuries.

“It is recommended that people take care if they have to travel as there has been damage to some roads,” he said.

Too little. Too late….

And where were the calming and authoritative voices telling them to stay in their homes?…

Government ministers Gerry Brownlee and John Carter finally turned up at the Beehive at 8.30am – four hours after the quake. Carter, the civil defence minister, said he had not yet spoken to the Prime Minister.

It could have been an episode of Dad’s Army. We’re going to have a conference call, said Carter. “Don’t panic.”

By the time the Government finally put John Key on an Airforce plane to Christchurch yesterday afternoon, any chance of demonstrating real, unifying leadership was gone.

Yesterday, the authorities didn’t lead – they followed.”

I don’t blame John Carter for taking four hours to get to the Beehive. He lives in Northland for Christ’s sake.

Was it slack that Minister for Civil Defence hadn’t spoken to the PM four hours into the disaster? Yes. But that tells you more about those two idiots then the State’s ability to respond. Frankly, there’s not much practical for ministers to do in those initial stages anyway. They’re no emergency professionals, they should get out of the way and let the professionals do their jobs.

Which is why I find it surprising that the Herald is criticising the PM for taking until the afternoon to fly to Christchurch. I ask why he was there at all. It’s not like he can make more informed decisions as a result. It was just a sight-seeing tour/photo-op that tied up emergency resources. Better for the PM to go once the initial situation has been stabilised. I would rather see the PM give a morale-boosting speech to the people of Christchurch today than doing a PR stunt yesterday (but he’s not there today, he’s at the netball playing sports commentator).

Anyway, like I say, an emergency response isn’t about what the politicians do but about how the public services are able to react.

Yesterday, the emergency services on the ground in Christchurch did sterling work. They cordoned off dangerous areas and got help to those who needed it. We have heard no reports of seriously injured people going without care; there was no breakdown in order. The fact that the local police were too busy activating their resources and doing their jobs to drop the Herald a line for – the horror! – an hour and a half after a major earthquake hit them is nothing to be ashamed of. The emergency services issued rolling advice updates to the public via Radio New Zealand and other media throughout the day.

It took just an hour and a half for the Ministry of Civil Defence to activate and issue information, quite a feat when you consider that means getting the staff into the emergency centre in the Beehive, getting information from Christchurch, analysing it, and formulating a response.

Across the board, the public service was on the ball. The hospitals coped well. The Defence Forces were on hand to assist. Search and Rescue teams were on their way as quick as practically possible. The Earthquake Commission had internet ads up advising people how to make claims within hours and had disseminated the information through the media too. The New Zealand Transport Agency had information on road closures out and up-to-date through the day.

And it’s not just the core public service that has proven its value. Radio New Zealand and Kiwirail have both shown how invaluable they are in a large-scale disaster.

RNZ is the only news source worth a damn in this kind of situation – most people in a disaster area are going to be able to listen to a radio but can’t get to a working TV or internet. Those that did see the TV coverage or listened to a commercial station would only have got patchy, sensationalist coverage that was obsessed with ‘looting’. RNZ’s coverage was professional, accessible, and relevant. We can’t afford to lose that. Another reason to oppose RNZ budget cuts and commercialisation.

Kiwirail has reminded us that rail that the ability to move huge amount of goods and people when needed, delivering 300,000 litres of water to Christchurch. Idiots who would have us abandon rail and rely on private trucking might like to reflect on that.

Publicly-owned utilities like Orion have repaired damage systems with admirable swiftness.

In fact, all righties should have a think where Christchurch would be without the building regulations and the public services they so strongly oppose.

So, I take my hat off to all the public servants who did their jobs with skill and dedication. When the best was needed of them, they delivered. The Herald can go f*ck itself.

35 comments on “Public service deserves praise for earthquake response”

  1. IrishBill 1

    Agreed. I’ve been incredibly impressed at how well this has gone, how resilient the people of Christchurch are and at how quickly the city is moving into clean-up mode.

    • Michael Foxglove 1.1

      Yes. Excellent call Marty. Communities in Christchurch have so far come through with incredible fortitude. And the contribution of public servants like civil defence officials, firefighters, and the police has been commendable.

  2. Jenny 2

    Train loaded with 300,000 litres of fresh water heads for stricken city.

    nzherald.co.nz

    KiwiRail chief executive Jim Quinn said the water would arrive aboard a train early this afternoon:

    “It’s a practical contribution we can make to Christchurch’s emergency response and we will be looking for other ways that rail can be used to support the region’s recovery,” he said.

    “We are grateful to Fonterra for making the tanks available for the shipment.”

    KiwiRail opened the railway line south of Christchurch last night but continuing aftershocks meant a speed limit of 40km/h had been imposed. That was reduced to 25km/h over bridges.

    A great initiative by Kiwi Rail.

  3. Treetop 3

    Everyone from central to local government, to distribution, to insurance, to emergency services to the media, have got it right regarding the welfare of those whose lives have been disrupted on many levels due to experiencing a severe earthquake and the unsettling after shocks.

    Civil Defence delivered: they did not panic, they showed leadership, they did not cause undue anxiety to those who were in shock.

  4. Jenny 4

    Another Public Service doing a great job.

    The MetService is currently issuing a weather warning for the people of Christchurch and surrounding areas.

    click here

    …Northwesterlies reaching 65 km/h in exposed places, with gusts of 130 km/h –
    between 9am Sunday and 6am Monday

    The Met say it is possible that the winds and heavy rain predicted may cause further damage to already compromised structures.

    There may also be a danger from unsecured loose materials being caught in the predicted high winds.

    In addition, severe gale force northwesterlies are forecast for the east of the South Island from inland Southland to Marlborough, and also for Wellington, Wairarapa and Hawkes Bay. These winds have the potential to bring down trees and powerlines, and make driving hazardous. They are also likely to be dangerous to structures already weakened by the recent earthquake.

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      It’s actually been very still all day here until about 20 minutes ago when the winds started, but it’s still not gale force.

      Dad said it was quite windy this morning, but not gale force then either.

      Lucky for us, and I guess sometimes the weather will always be unpredictable.

  5. kriswgtn 5

    Chch will pull through this,I just hope it dont lose its charm.

    but as for beaker

    Keystone took what, 7-8 hours to arrive.
    What a loser

    and yeah it all boils down to $ for him while taxpayers can bailout SCF , they balk @ helping those who cant afford insurance

    Not everyones a thief like you beaker

  6. A Nonny Moose 6

    I laughed when I heard ol’ Smile n Wave was coming to “view the damage”. It goes to show his value to the country that the best he could do was offer condolences, and promises. Yeah, we know how good he is with his promises. I’d love to know if the money the govt will offer to our city will be more than the 1.7b offered to SCF!

    I am really really impressed how smoothly things have gone. Life is disturbed, but we’re incredibly well informed. Once power came back on, internet access was immediate and we have all the info we need at our fingertips.

    • RedLogix 6.1

      I laughed when I heard ol’ Smile n Wave was coming to “view the damage”. It goes to show his value to the country that the best he could do was offer condolences, and promises.

      Well that’s pretty much what we expect of our political leaders in these situations. If it was a Labour leader we’d expect the same.

      • Rosy 6.1.1

        I laughed when he was shocked about swimming pools popping out of the ground… interensting reference point.

        Emergency services seem to have been awesome! as have the people of Canterbury. It’ll be a hard week for them 🙁

        • Vicky32 6.1.1.1

          Yes, I watched him banging on, about swimming pools on 3News last night, and I thought WTF?????
          Thanks to Nat Rad, they rock! Their coverage was completely awesome and comprehensive…
          Deb

  7. prism 7

    It was surprising to see John Key in front of the TV camera explaining about the earthquake when it should have been the public servants with the expertise who are paid to handle the various aspects.

    It is right for the country’s leader to be there to see and hear about the size and cost of the problems but I thought he was getting into photo opportunity stance by doing the detailed reporting. Good if he could find out as much about how to strengthen a fragile economy successfully.

  8. Jenny 8

    Remarkably, not one major bridge in the affected area has been damaged.

    All the anonymous engineers responsible, deserve to be publicly recognised as life savers.

    capcha “Lazy” definitely not.

  9. RedLogix 9

    Thanks Marty. A lot of public service utility people will have been working very hard since this event. The guys who’ve had the least media presence, but who will have been working the hardest will be the the the water supply/sewerage guys. I can tell you from direct knowledge that they’ve been scrambling non-stop putting into action existing earthquake response plans, assessing and mitigating the damage.

    They’ll have weeks, if not months, of difficult work ahead.

  10. Draco T Bastard 10

    Just watching TV3 news and they were complaining about the EQC because people couldn’t get through as if they expect the EQC to keep enough people on to be able to answer phones immediately when disaster strikes.

    • Carol 10.1

      And getting someone on the phone is not much use if they can’t provide much assistance. I had my ceiling open up in a Sydney storm a few years back. I got hold f the SES (State Emergency Services) on the phone that night. But they didn’t actually front-up and cover my roof for 2 weeks. Meanwhile I had a tarp rigged up over my bed, and my stuff all piled in the few dry spots I could find, while water poured in every time it rained. And there were others still sleeping under tarps rigged up over their beds long after my whole roof was covered.

      On TV3 tonight, John Campbell also did a report about the search and rescue team that have been hard at it in ChCh. Campbell was full of praise for them.

      • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1

        And getting someone on the phone is not much use if they can’t provide much assistance.

        Well, apparently EQC do have the money but it’s an unknown if the resources for fixing Chch up are available.

  11. Hollyfield 11

    I think the Herald editorial is appalling, and I think they will find that most of NZ will disagree with their views on this matter. With the benefit of hindsight there are always things that can have been done differently/better, but in the middle of the crisis people have to cope with very difficult situations as best they can. It’s important to get facts and accurate data before making decisions, and this can’t generally be done instantaneously. Bob Parker has been fantastic, and to get so much of the power and water restored so quickly is amazing. The structural engineers on TV1 news tonight are acting so quickly to assess whether buildings are safe. Well done to everyone.

  12. prism 12

    Bob Parker might be a good front man but the hard work is being done behind his smiling presence on TV. And I don’t think that he should be judged as being the foremost candidate for mayor over Jim Anderton because of his white teeth and media nous.

  13. Johnno 13

    Congratulations to the officials and public servants who put their own and their families needs to the rear while they went and helped the fellow citizens. They are true servants to the public. I spent a lot of time yesterday in the vicinity of the Civil Defence bunker, and I have to say that without fail every official (and actually every Minister) I had dealings with were polite, good-natured, incredibly helpful, and patient explaining things to the assorted media.

    BTW, one of my favourite memories from yesterday was a farmer interviewed on the phone during TVNZ’s day-coverage. Question: What sort of shape is your house in? Answer: Aw, it’s fucked, aah I mean buggered, no, stuffed….. this isn’t live is it?

    Legend.

  14. Armchair Critic 14

    Looks like a textbook response to me. Sure, anyone can find something that could have been done better, it’s a major disaster, after all. But seriously, the CD response seems to have been excellent.

  15. I said I wouldnt post here anymore here, (and i wont after this post) but this is a unique event. Im not going to comment on the Government, but I will comment on civil defense, the police and the local authorites.

    Hats off to them, freaking amazing, it seems they had people on every street that was affected, I cannot beleive how fast they dealt with this, and how proffesional they were, to basically have everything back on, power/ water and the freakin internet just blows my mind.

    I dont know who trains these guys or what methods they use, but ten out of ten!!!!!!!!!

  16. Nick C 16

    Marty would you be opposed to the government hiring private contractors to clean up the city, repair damaged infrustructure etc?

    • Loota 16.1

      John Key wanted some new jobs schemes, now he has them.

    • Marty G 16.2

      No. The government doesn’t have a ministry of works any more, so all that kind of work has to be sub-contracted.

      doesn’t mean it’s good economic news though. Any more than it’s good news if you lose your cellphone and have to spend some of your savings buying a new one.

  17. Jenny 17

    Federated Farmers are on the ball and their website which is being continually updated, seems to be a good resource for rural and urban folk.

    From the Feds:

    In addition to the water deliveries to Christchurch in conjunction with Fonterra. The Federated Farmers 0800 FARMING line is increasingly receiving offers of accommodation from farmers, which Federated Farmers is now in discussion with the Red Cross on (who are also talking to Civil Defence on this matter). Federated Farmers is keen to collate these offers and if you can offer any assistance, please register that on 0800 327 646 (0800 FARMING) tomorrow morning.

    Electricity update for the Orion network:
    Orion continues to make progress restoring power across Christchurch city and
    the surrounding rural areas. Power has been restored to approximately 98
    percent of Christchurch’s urban and rural electricity network with less than
    3,000 customers now affected out of a total of almost 200,000.

    It is hopeful that power can be restored to a further 2,000 customers tomorrow.
    Several hundred customers will be affected for some days to come. All customers
    who need power, as long as their building is not severely damaged, should have
    power within four to five days. Orion’s advice remains that, as a precaution,
    farming customers seriously affected by power cuts should seek assistance and
    Federated Farmers has offers of generators. Please call 0800 327 646 to
    discuss.

    The MetService continues to forecast strong winds, however, these haven’t
    arrived yet. The weather has not hampered Orion’s restoration efforts today but
    any serious inclement weather could extend these timeframes.

    It is important to note that parts of its network will be in a fragile state due
    to temporary repairs used to restore power urgently. This fragile state will
    remain for some weeks before permanent repairs are completed, meaning that
    small events could cause power outages. Orion urges everyone to stay away from
    power poles and lines and to treat all lines as live at all times.

    The majority of Orion’s field staff and contractors will be stood down overnight
    for safety reasons. Federated Farmers is extremely grateful for the efforts of
    Orion’s staff and contractors.

    Telecom service update:
    Telecom’s fixed line infrastructure is performing well, as are both mobile
    networks. The majority of service issues are power-related and Chorus has
    advised us that enough generators and diesel are available to power all
    affected cabinets and cell sites to restore services in the South Island.

    The generators are being distributed to all affected cell sites and cabinets.
    Telecom expects all affected cell sites and affected cabinets to be running on
    full power from today. Chorus is implementing a diesel top-up schedule to
    ensure that generators do not run out. Telecom is working closely with
    infrastructure, banking and insurance providers, as well as construction firms,
    to support rebuild and recovery activities across Canterbury. The 111 service
    is fully functional.

    Telecom’s Christchurch offices will be closed on Monday 6 September. Client
    calls will be routed to its other contact centres where staffing levels have
    been increased.

    Schools and the University of Canterbury:
    Civil Defence advises that every school in Christchurch, Selwyn district and
    Kaiapoi will be closed for two days on Monday 6 September and Tuesday 7
    September. This applies to the state and private sectors alike. The University
    of Canterbury (including the College of Education at Dovedale) is closed while
    the campus is assessed. The University will not open before 6.00 am on Monday,
    13 September.

    Reporting damage:
    If you do have damage, please make contact with the EQC on 0800 326 243 and take
    photographs of damaged property. If you consider any damage to be potentially
    life threatening, dial 111.

    If you can offer assistance or need assistance, please contact:

    0800 327 646 (0800 FARMING)

    capcha – “comparatively”

  18. Logie97 18

    Just thinking…

    I watched the PM and the local Chamber of Commerce head on QandA this morning and their mention of every cloud having a silver lining and a positive effect on employment. I think they were referring to the masses of reparation work that will follow this disaster.

    The work is of course essential and the money will be found.

    Strange though that in other times Key would call this sort of work ‘government created’ and not productive…

  19. jcuknz 19

    As I watched I think it was Stuff’s photographic coverage from afar I got the impression that most damaged buildings seemed to be those built before we had building regulations and were past their ‘use by’ date. So the silver lining was that there were no fatalities and some of buildings which should have gone long ago will now be demolished? It is inevitable that ‘heads’ will flock to get in the way of the workers, I am sure it has been going on since the year dot … except these days we have the blogs to comment on rather than to our mates or under our breaths.

  20. vto 20

    Sheesh Mr Marty, you sound like Bill English when he said the folk of South Canterbury should say “thanks”. Piss off.

    The public service and regulations have been put in place over many governments over many decades, mostly of centre-right persuasion. I have never heard anyone call for deregulation of earthquake or fire regulations in the building industry so I am not sure what you are referring to.

    As someone responsible for putting up several residential buildings in town, including one a dozen stories high, I can assure you that never in the industry (swamped as it is with right wing types ay) have I come across anyone complaining about onerous safety standards in buildling. In fact quite the reverse. Including ourselves in the last one – on many occassions the point was made (more with fire) that it must work to preserve lives in the case of an emergency. As it has.

    I will tell you who deserves the biggest pat on the back in Christchurch (among many many) and that is the structural engineers of Christchurch. A small group who have been responsible for the designs of all the buildings. Their designs have performed admirably. Their work deserves a medal.

  21. freedom 21

    the only people who did a lousy job during the aftermath of this disaster were the Media

    they displayed the usual hunger for sensation instead of reporting level headed facts and information, they predictably failed in their civic duty during this disaster

    tv reporters endlessly repeating questions and not listening to answers, wasting the time of people who had far more important things to do

    warnings to the public about not clogging communication services followed by repeated requests for people to send in photos and stories,
    even after one of the telco’s speciifically asked them to stop

    there is the assistance of the military, do they calmly report this basic and expected event, no, they show images of armoured personnel carriers getting loaded aboard the ferry instead of a few simple shots of trucks and soldiers packing up emergency equipment. Sure the trucks are not as exciting but this type of juvenile journalism only creates false sensationalism, much like the over-reporting of the single (attempted) looting incident

    and then there is the disgraceful swooping of the buzzards into fox glacier, where apparently the media who went to the pub that night got told very clearly that they were not welcome

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    2 hours ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    8 hours ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    10 hours ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    10 hours ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    11 hours ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    13 hours ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    16 hours ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 day ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    2 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    2 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    2 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    2 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    3 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    5 days ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    7 days ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago

No feed items found.