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Question time

Written By: - Date published: 8:35 am, June 4th, 2009 - 44 comments
Categories: corruption, crime, john key - Tags:

John Key’s making a real hash of this latest Worth scandal. There was the secretive way he went about things yesterday, which is just not acceptable from a Prime Minister in New Zealand. He wasted several opportunities to correct his mistake and give full details during the day. Yet the story is still coming out. More serious in political terms though, is the way Key handled Worth when he knew that Worth had been doing something seriously bad.

– Why did it take over a week from losing confidence in Worth to Worth resigning? Why didn’t Key fire him immediately he lost confidence in him?

The answer Key gave today in the House ‘had to let him have natural justice’ makes no sense. You don’t lose confidence then carry out an investigation. Natural justice comes first, then losing confidence. Key must already have been sure last Tuesday. ‘Natural justice’ is an illogical excuse. The real reason is Key didn’t want the scandal to sour the Bleak Budget (as if that could get more sour). So he kept a man he says he would not have in his ministry in his ministry for another week for PR reasons.

– What investigation did Key undertake when he was told Worth had been sexually harassing women, known as ‘making a nuisance of himself towards women’ in Key-speak?

– Who did Key consult with during this investigation? Did he consider involving the Police? If not, why not?

– Did his investigation conclude that Worth had indeed sexually harassed women just that it was not serious? Because that’s what his words imply.

– Why, if that was the finding of his investigation, did he not consider this serious?

– Why didn’t he tell the public that one of his ministers had been sexually harassing women?

The answers to these questions will raise even more as the details come out.

The inadequacy of Key’s initial investigation. His shielding of Worth. Keeping mum when he knew that Worth was subject to an allegation for a serious offence. The fact that Key had lost confidence in his minister but kept him on. The hide and seek game he has played with the public over the facts. All are serious failings in a Prime Minister.

Questions will be asked. Again and again over the weeks to come. Key better have some good answers.

44 comments on “Question time”

  1. Tigger 1

    Adding insult to this injury is the way Key handled the press conference yesterday. He is a literal chatty Kathy, allowing himself to be drawn on questions that he earlier says are the domain of the police. By the end of the question time we all knew Worth was being investigated for a criminal matter against a person, a crime that wasn’t so serious he’d been chucked off the list but serious enough to lose the MInister’s seat ([DELETED]). How Key was pushed into revealing a lot more detail than he wanted or needed to was very worrying.

    Worse for me, as the post points out, Key appears to be suddenly disgusted with Worth (where was the digust last week Prime Minister…?) – the latter is very important because it says that Key will take a stand but only when it looks like the truth is being outed, until then he really is happy to protect his little boy’s club, but when Key does drop you, you can expect a kick while you’re down. No ‘natural justice’ there, mate. Key has already tried and convicted Worth and told the rest of us what he thinks. He’s fudged any justice for Worth. Key thinks Worth is a pig ergo we should all think the same.

    By the way, has Worth pleaded guilty to anything? Aren’t the police investigating a complaint? So he’s not been charge yet. Has Worth actually told Key he did it? Because otherwise Mr Key, it’s innocent until proven guilty so while accepting a resignation and claiming you’d fire him is all fine, your disgust and judgemental tone are not. You’re throwing stones at someone who you only suspect might be guilty.

    But perhaps Key knows something we don’t, that Worth is guilty and if Worth HAS admitted his guilt to Key then I suggest he contact the Wellington police and tell them what he knows. In fact, he could end up a witness for the prosecution…

    All in all, a big, fat FAIL from our PM who, if he’s as successful a businessman as he thinks should have been able to handle this sort of thing easily.

    • Pascal's bookie 1.1

      Tigg, if it’s not too late I’d delete the stuff in brackets in your first para.

      [Ed: It’s been deleted]

  2. Pascal's bookie 2

    “The inadequacy of Key’s initial investigation.”

    from that Herald story:

    Of the allegations raised by Mr Goff, the Prime Minister said: “The assurance I had was that they were not correct. I had no reason to disbelieve that.”

    Did Key know there were emails? Did he ask to see them? Story suggests not.

    These were not personal matters but about official appointments.

  3. Sounds like Dick can arrange anything if you make it worth his while.

  4. gobsmacked 4

    John Key claims to have lost confidence in Richard Worth last Tuesday (9 days ago). This was a matter of hours (minutes?) after expressing confidence in him during question time in the House, that Tuesday afternoon.

    How very, very convenient.

  5. corkscrew 5

    Dr Richard Worth presents the “Dr Richard Worth Cup for Citizenship” at Epsom Girls Grammar School every year in person, its nice seeing someone in government take a passionate interest in the social mores of young women. I hope this doesn’t dissuade him from being a positive role model in the community.

  6. Sean 6

    I love how the left complain over the timeframe of a couple of days yet it was Labour’s ERA 2000 that made so much more difficult to fire wayward employees. Go figure!

    • Daveo 6.1

      A) No it didn’t. Personal grievance law remained pretty much unchanged between the ECA and the ERA.

      B) MPs aren’t covered by employment law.

      • Sean 6.1.1

        A) As a manger operating under the current ERA I beg to differ. The subtleties of the ERA were made absolute by the employment relations authority.

        B) Assuming this is true then fair point. Even so, a few days to establish the facts in a high profile case like this wouldn’t be unreasonable(and amongst budget week!). Would you be so quick to judge yourself?

        • gobsmacked 6.1.1.1

          But Sean, Key had already judged. He said so yesterday:

          “Hon Phil Goff: When did the Prime Minister lose confidence in Dr Worth as a Minister?

          Hon JOHN KEY: Last Tuesday afternoon.”

          There was no due process.

          That same afternoon, Key had expressed confidence in Worth, in the House, just after 2 p.m.

          I don’t know when afternoons end, but whenever it was, that’s when the “due process” had finished.

          • Sean 6.1.1.1.1

            So? Upon hearing the (yet to be publicly known) specific allegations I would lose confidence too. But I wouldn’t rush to judgement without going though a process to determine a few critical facts.

            Again, what we are quibbling about here is a few days. It’s not as if Key has asked for a public investigation. If anything, his decisiveness may prove to be too quick!

  7. exbrethren 7

    John Key reassured the NZ public today about this matter. “I give my personal guarantee that I have acted properly in this matter and the former minister Worth Dick misunderstood me when I gave him a bollocking. This wasn’t an excuse for him to go and try and give other people a bollocking. I also give my personal guarantee that Nashnul will take Epsom seriously by selecting a serious candidate. I am confident Melissa Lee will do a good job there.”

  8. Tim Ellis 8

    I seem to remember when there were allegations of criminal activity around a Labour Minister, Helen Clark appointed a QC to investigate, set up limited terms of reference for the inquiry, and gave the QC many months to report back.

    By comparison, a one-week investigation into the allegations by Mr Key is lightening-fast.

    • exbrethren 8.1

      This just in from John Key “I give my personal guarantee that I acted promptly upon this incident and didn’t sit on it for nine days hoping it wouldn’t come out into the public domain.”

    • Pascal's bookie 8.2

      Tim, there are differences aplenty, you know it, but reveal much in ignoring them.

      Field denied it, Worth has apparently not.

      When Field denied it, Helen appointed a QC to investigate, as you say. Did Key even look at the Emails from the earlier complaint?

      The herald quotes him as saying assurances convinced him there was nothing to it.

      But then it was only Worth being a ‘nuisance’ I suppose. Or as Prebble called it, ‘being a bit fresh towards a Labour party activist’. Charmed I’m sure.

      • Tim Ellis 8.2.1

        PB, the earlier complaint appears to have been about motive, which was not apparently clear in the evidence. Mr Goff describes the “undertones” of an expectation of a relationship in return for an appointment of some kind. It seems to me that these “undertones” were not explicit. Dr Worth apparently denied these “undertones”.

        Mr Key investigated the information Mr Goff gave him appropriately. There was no allegation of criminal behaviour.

        I don’t know if Dr Worth denied to Mr Key the allegations regarding this other individual. It seems to me that Dr Worth’s failing relating to ministerial confidence in this respect is not the substance of the allegations, but the fact that he did not inform the PM that such allegations existed, and that he was likely to be the subject of a police complaint for the best part of a week.

        The substance of the allegations aren’t something that the PM should adjudicate on. At best he should allow the police to conduct their normal inquiries and ensure that they are able to do their job.

        I don’t think Mr Key could have acted any differently.

        • Pascal's bookie 8.2.1.1

          “Mr Key investigated the information Mr Goff gave him appropriately.”

          How do you know this?

          All I’ve seen is the suggestion that he took Worth at his word. You claim this is enough too?

          We know enough about the ‘overtones’ that they have been described with reference to the words ‘nuisance’ and ‘fresh’. The recipient detected these overtones, Goff saw enough in them to take the matter up with Key privately, ( a fact that some righties are saying discredits him, as if he should have run along to the press!).

        • Maynard J 8.2.1.2

          “Mr Key investigated the information Mr Goff gave him appropriately. There was no allegation of criminal behaviour.”

          I have read that someone was offered a sinecure upon the expectation there would be ‘romance’ resulting. This from the Herald today.How can you be so damn sure of what you have written above? It makes your comments about not being an ‘insider’ seem pretty false.

          No one would made such a self-assured black-and-white comment without more info than from the papers.

          • Tim Ellis 8.2.1.2.1

            Maynard J, I am pointing to the fact that Mr Goff himself only referred to undertones of an expectation. It was evidently not explicit, otherwise Mr Goff would have made the explicit connection. The PM’s responsibility was to question Dr Worth, as he did, on whether there was an expectation on Dr Worth’s part that a relationship would ensue from the appointment. Mr Key has said that he was satisfied with Dr Worth’s explanation of the communications.

          • r0b 8.2.1.2.2

            Mr Key has said that he was satisfied with Dr Worth’s explanation of the communications.

            Subsequent events have shown that to be very poor judgement on Key’s part.

          • Pascal's bookie 8.2.1.2.3

            The emails were personal, they were about ‘do you want to come swimming with me?’ Do you want to take a holiday with me overseas, I want you to buy this see-through clothing. This woman is half Dr Worth’s age, she is a happily married woman with children, she was offended by it.”

            Goff said he had not raised the claims publicly because “I didn’t really want to go through grubby details of the allegations that were made”.

            http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/2470449/Ex-minister-offered-job-for-favours

            All a bit subtle I suppose.

          • Tim Ellis 8.2.1.2.4

            r0b, it doesn’t show a lack of judgement in my view to show confidence in a Minister until they have demonstrated that they no longer warrant confidence. Helen Clark had multiple opportunities to sack any one of the ministers she sacked, long before she ended up sacking them.

          • exbrethren 8.2.1.2.5

            If these emails exist with the words as quoted in stuff then Key is either;

            a. an extremely poor judge of character
            b. a person that thinks sexual harassment is a funny joke
            c. a liar who indulged in a cover-up of a minister

            My guess is he’ll go for a.

          • r0b 8.2.1.2.6

            r0b, it doesn’t show a lack of judgement in my view to show confidence in a Minister until they have demonstrated that they no longer warrant confidence.

            Spin it all you like Tim, the facts prove that Key’s judgement was spectacularly wrong. Worth carried on with his pattern of behaviour until the police got involved.

            Helen Clark had multiple opportunities to sack any one of the ministers she sacked, long before she ended up sacking them.

            Your usual bullshit lies Tim, several were sacked at the first hint of trouble. Key should have acted on Worth much sooner than he did.

          • Tim Ellis 8.2.1.2.7

            r0b wrote:

            Your usual bullshit lies Tim, several were sacked at the first hint of trouble. Key should have acted on Worth much sooner than he did.

            That is not my recollection of Helen Clark’s response to Mr Field, Mr Mallard, Mr Peters, or Mr Benson-Pope, r0b, which all dragged out for many months before final action.

          • r0b 8.2.1.2.8

            Your claim was – “Helen Clark had multiple opportunities to sack any one of the ministers she sacked” – which was a bullshit lie Tim (yet another one from you). As per my link above, there were ministers who were sacked at the first sign of trouble.

          • Tim Ellis 8.2.1.2.9

            r0b, your argument appears to be that Mr Key has shown a lack of judgement in not sacking Dr Worth earlier, based on multiple errors by Dr Worth.

            The same can be said of Helen Clark, who had multiple opportunities to sack many of her Ministers who involved themselves in indiscretions or impropriety or otherwise poor ministerial performance, but chose not to do so. David Benson-Pope, Phillip Field, Winston Peters, Trevor Mallard, George Hawkins, Judith Tizard, etc etc. I note that you don’t indicate that their further indiscretions amounted to poor judgement on Ms Clark’s part.

          • r0b 8.2.1.2.10

            r0b, your argument appears to be

            Tim, my argument appears to be that you are a liar. I note that you don’t deny it.

            And as to Worth, best summary by far is from Gordon Campbell:

            Secondly, there is the little matter of accountability. Regardless of whether a criminal case will finally be made, Worth had been shown remarkable leniency by Key over the past few months. This has been in stark contrast to the strong messages about accountability that National had sent out in opposition when Labour Ministers had transgressed and subsequently, in government. When it comes to public servants, the National caucus is very quick to issue demands that ‘heads must roll.’ Not so ihowever, when it is one of their own. All this year, Worth has appeared to benefit from a series of ‘final’ warnings and been on ‘final notice’ which in his case, seemed to mean only ‘until next time.’

            The third dubious element has been Key’s fumbling of the events yesterday morning, when the fact of a Police investigation became public. After first disclosing the bare facts and saying there would be no further comment ie, he would let the Police investigation proceed without political intrusion – Key then, two hours later, virtually prejudged aspects of the affair, by commenting further that if Worth hadn’t resigned as Minister, Key would have sacked him, and further indicated that perhaps Worth should consider his future within the caucus, and as an MP.

            At every point, Key has either delayed taking action for months, over Worth’s well publicized lapses of judgement and then when action became inescapable, he delayed again lest the affair should overshadow the Budget coverage. Having promised not to comment publicly ( apparently,lest that should taint the Police investigation) he then proceeded to do so.

            In other words, this has been a tawdry disaster, abysmally handled.

          • Tim Ellis 8.2.1.2.11

            Tim, my argument appears to be that you are a liar. I note that you don’t deny it.

            I didn’t deny it r0b because I didn’t wish to dignify it, just as on repeat occasions I didn’t wish to dignify the accusations that I work in the National Party research unit. I won’t debate with you again. As you cannot debate constructively without descending into personal abuse, it is a waste of my time.

          • r0b 8.2.1.2.12

            Sure whatever Tim, but all you have to do to stop me calling you a liar is to stop telling lies. Bye now.

    • doc whose asking 8.3

      Tim,

      the matter of higher office (yeah I know worth was outside cabinet) comes into consideration.. who decides these things.. the PM.. I heard he refers to “my” cabinet.. is that all there is to it..? what advices.. else.. might he seek.. and like what, who from.. my guess is folks claiming know about potential candidates.. so where does that leave this thing..? somehow I cannae accept that actual office has a fellow demonstrably errant.. arrogance or whatever would surely pre-exist..?

      honest questions.. same answers welcomed and respected..

      • Tim Ellis 8.3.1

        Doc,

        The PM alone decides on whether he has confidence in any of his ministers. Yes, he might take advice, but who he seeks advice from isn’t relevant in my view. Helen Clark clearly relied heavily on the advice of Heather Simpson. That doesn’t make Heather Simpson responsible for those decisions.

        I hope I’ve answered your question.

        • doc whose asking 8.3.1.1

          thanks Tim, but no not really.. you see I’m really talking about “better” – the National Party (certainly the PM’s) promise post-Election. More of the same, or similar, is no way better. Hence, as I said, the process of higher office selection would seem to require scrutiny.

          Put another way, what makes for the PM’s confidence in a guy. If only good faith(actual) or blind faith (intended) then suitable scrutiny would be improbable. Which is to say they need independent help to get anywhere near putting matters aright.

          Partisan for power has its problems. aka Responsibilities as folks around me agree.

          In the budget, for instance, clear responsibilities on display. Taxcuts have their limits for any responsible national government. So if they can deliver on the policy front they ought also have no problems whatsoever on the individual plays.. yet there they are..!

    • ak 8.4

      Mr Key is lightening-fast

      Good old Tim – drags up an apple to compare with a putrid pear.

      Lightning’s struck, Mr Sunny’s darkening, and there’s milk powder clouds on the horizon….

      Brrrrr…..better wrap up tories!

  9. I hope for Key’s sake he didnt mislead the House last week when expressing confidence in all his ministers.

  10. Cossack 10

    John Key new about all this last week. He waited until after the Budget to make Worth resign. That is disgraceful and he should be called on it.

  11. tsmithfield 11

    Several points here:

    On the basis of the issue that Goff raised, even according to Goff, the matter seems to have been more innuendo, and implied romantic ovetures. These sorts of things can be difficult to prove and easy to deny. This is because these sort of communications are often highly ambiguous. According to Key, his office investigated the matter and was unable to prove anything. Given that Worth denied any wrong doing Key really had no option but to accept his word under the circumstances.

    With respect to the second matter, Key may well have had some knowledge last week. However, there would still be due process of getting Worths side of the story etc before he could take disciplinary action.

    I think Key has acted pretty strongly here by not only forcing Worth’s resignation but also sending a strong message that Worth should consider his future as an MP. There is no road back like Clark allowed for some of her MP’s who sinned.

    Getting rid of Worth is a good thing. There is no room for sleazy scumbags in parliament whatever side of the house they are on.

  12. the sprout 12

    someone’s been busy on wiki already
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Worth

    • Tigger 12.1

      Could I suggest to the editors of the Wikipedia page that the following line about Worth might be seen as rather ironic now…
      “An advocate of closer business and social ties between New Zealand and South Korea…”

      • Chris G 12.1.1

        you know anyone can be the editor to an unlocked wikipedia page?… for example Richard Worths.

        • felix 12.1.1.1

          Yeah, back in March apparently, resulting in the following discussion on the page.

          Conflict of interest

          There appear to have been two series of edits by a User:Richard_W_Worth who appears to be the subject of this page:

          The first of these has effectively been undone already, but I’m about to rewrite the second, since they appear to breach Wikipedia:Conflict of interest. The user has been warned on their talk page.

          “Conflict of interest” seems to be writ large across every facet of this guy’s life, doesn’t it?

    • doc whose asking 12.2

      how very inter-resting.. ta-soh..

      And there for all to see the external link of Laura Bush learning of the Varied Thrush — a “rare bird in Texas”. Migratory..? Untold.. 🙂

      Just my luck the wiki has no mention of religious influence, input or inference for this fellow.. Perhaps Korean and thus unwritable or unpronounceable. Perhaps not… Enlightenment anyone..

  13. Kaplan 13

    @Tim Ellis 10:15
    I think he could have taken the opportunity that was generously handed to him by Goff to deal with this in a much cleaner fashion. In this I include Goff failing to ask if Key had confidence in his ministers between last Tuesday and yesterday.

    That Key didn’t see the situation as serious would be laughable if it were not sickening and ultimately it is proof of yet more poor judgment on his part.

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    Collision Course? In conditions of ideological white-out, the international bankers’ “Woop-Woop! Pull Up!” warning may have come too late to save global capitalism.WHAT DOES IT MEAN when international bankers are more willing to embrace radical solutions than our politicians and their electors? At both the International Monetary Fund and the ...
    5 days ago
  • Whooping cough vaccine works well despite its imperfections
    Pertussis (whooping cough) is a conundrum. It is a disease that was described hundreds of years ago and the bacteria that causes it (Bordetella pertussis) isolated in 1906. We have had vaccines for about 80 years but this disease is defiant in the face of human immunity. I wanted to ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Passed
    The Zero Carbon Bill has just passed its third reading, uanimously. In the end, National supported it - but we all know they'll turn around and gut it the moment they regain power. Meanwhile, I guess ACT's David Seymour didn't even bother to show up. I am on record as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Retailing of vaping products – New NZ Research
    Dr Lindsay Robertson, Dr Jerram Bateman, Professor Janet Hoek Members of the public health community hold divergent views on how access to vaping products or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) products should be arranged. Some believe ENDS should be as widely available as smoked tobacco and argue for liberal ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • Justice for Bomber
    When the Police were trying to cover up for the National Party over Dirty Politics, they went all-in with their abuses of power. They illegally search Nicky Hager's house, violating his journalistic privilege and invading his privacy. They unlawfully acquired Hager's bank records. They did the same to left-wing blogger ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Britain’s climate tyranny was unlawful
    Last month, in response to a wave of protests by Extinction Rebellion, the British government purported to ban their protests from the whole of London. It was a significant interference with the freedoms of expression and assembly, and another sign of the country's decline into tyranny. But now, a court ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • More crime from the spies
    Last year, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security reported on significant problems with the intelligence warrant system. While they were unwilling to declare any warrant "irregular" (meaning unlawful) due to the recent law change, they were also not willing to give the system a clean bill of health. Now, they've ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Vaccination, compulsion, and paternalism for the lower orders
    The National Party has come out in support of encouraging greater vaccination uptake. But it sure isn’t the way I’d do it. National’s suggested docking the benefits of those on benefit whose kids aren’t keeping up with their vaccinations. Some in National have suggested extending that to payments under Working ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    6 days ago
  • Global Protests Rage On: But Slogans Are Not Plans.
    Feeding The Flames: It is simply not enough to demand an end to “corruption”, or “inequality”, or the overbearing influence of the authorities in Beijing. These are just “lowest common denominator” demands: the sort of slogans that pull people onto the streets. They are not a plan.WHERE’S THE PLAN? Across ...
    6 days ago
  • 11,000 employed under Labour
    The labour market statistics have been released, and unemployment has risen to 4.2%. There are 115,000 unemployed - 11,000 fewer than when Labour took office. In that time the minimum wage has gone up by $2 an hour, which shows that the right's fears about increases causing unemployment are simply ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Boycott this democratic fraud
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has called for submissions on Andrew Little's tyrannical Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill. Normally I encourage participation in the democratic process. I am not doing so in this case. Instead, I encourage all of you to boycott this submissions process, and to post ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Why Mars is cold despite an atmosphere of mostly carbon dioxide
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz If tiny concentrations of carbon dioxide can hold enough heat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ban private jets
    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • The freshwater mussel housing crisis: eviction by invasive weeds?
    Tom Moore Traditionally a food source and cutting tool, freshwater mussels/kākahi are now widely valued as water filters that help clean our waterbodies and maintain ecosystem health throughout Aotearoa. The improvement they provide in water quality can make it easier for other animals to live in streams and rivers, as ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Back it up Luxon: endorsing the destructive past is not actually the way forward
    And to think he gave all the potential goodwill away with that moronic, cult-like statement (repeated ad nauseam by many National hardliners) that Key is quite simply “the greatest PM we ever had”… Installation complete: this was nothing ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Good riddance
    National MP and former Conservation Minister Maggie Barry will not seek re-election next year. Good riddance. Because in case anyone has forgotten, barry is a bullying thug who terrorised both public servants and fellow MPs. She is one of the people who makes Parliament a toxic workplace, and our country ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: D-Day
    The Zero Carbon Bill is back in the House today for its second reading. While this isn't the final stage, its still effectively D-Day for the bill. Because today, at around 5pm, is when we're going to find out if it has a majority, whether National will support it or ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Winston is right
    Winston Peters is in court today, suing a bunch of former Minister and civil servants over their pre-election leak of his superannuation repayment. He's characterised the leak as malicious, and said that it is repugnant that his information was passed on to Ministers to use for political advantage. And he's ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Media impartiality
    Sky's economics editor, Ed Conway has posted a Twitter thread responding to a claim that - as far as I can see - Labour never made:
    Are NHS operation cancellations at an all-time high? That's the impression you might have been left with if you read this story from the ...
    1 week ago
  • Finish what’s on your plate
    Murray Cox Do I have to finish my favourite genome? That’s an often-asked question. Geneticists generally strive to produce high-quality genomes that sequence every last gene, making full use of the state-of-the-art technologies coming on stream. Sequencing DNA means determining the order of the four chemical building blocks – called ...
    SciBlogsBy Genomics Aotearoa
    1 week ago
  • Gainful Employment: A Cautionary Tale.
    Transformative Politics: The idea is to turn each recipient into an unwitting accomplice in their own transformation. From interested observer to hyped-up activist, sharing our messages promiscuously with ‘friends’. You’ll be part of an ever-expanding circulatory system, Jennifer, for the ideas that will win us the election.”JENNIFER SKITTERED her chair ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand should not fund bigotry
    Two years ago, the Cook Islands government announced that it was planning to join the civilised world and decriminalise consensual homosexual sex between men. Now, they've reversed their position, and decided to criminalise lesbians into the bargain:Two years ago, in a step welcomed by many people including the gay and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More tyranny in Australia
    The boycott is a fundamental tool of protest. By choosing who we buy from, we can send a message, and hopefully change corporate behaviour. Historically, boycotts have been effective, for example over apartheid in South Africa and Israel, in forcing divestment from Myanmar, and in ending bus segregation in the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Submission for rationality and science against the assaults of pre-modernism and post-modernism
    Jan Rivers spoke at the Abortion Legislation Select Committee in favour of the bill, but in opposition to calls from other submitters to exchange the word ‘woman’ for ‘person’ throughout the bill. Jan is a supporter of the feminist group Speak Up For Women and has recently written an excellent ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • My loyal readership of … Cam girls and Pornbots?
    I checked my traffic stats:I was intrigued by 'monica29' - who was this very dedicated individual?  I clicked on the link, to be greeted with ...Ho, hum.Spreadin' the word, spreadin' the word.  Doesn't matter who hears it, as long as it gets out there. ...
    1 week ago
  • Worth repeating forever
    There have been three polls since the election was announced, and I will shamelessly steal YouGov / UK Polling Report's Anthony Wells' summary of them:Survation – CON 34%, LAB 26%, LDEM 19%, BREX 12%, GRN 1% Ipsos MORI – CON 41%, LAB 24%, LDEM 20%, BREX 7%, GRN 3% YouGov ...
    1 week ago
  • Lutte Ouvriere on the explosion in Chile
    The following article is translated from Lutte Ouvrière, the weekly newspaper of the organisation usually known by the same name in France. When, for the second time this year, Chilean President Piñera announced an increase in the price of Metro tickets from 800 to 830 pesos, students in the high ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Wage theft – I’m fucking over it.
    Today, a worker contacted me asking if she could go to the police over her employer stealing thousands of dollars from her in unpaid wages. The employer also did not pay this worker’s taxes or student loan which amounts to tax fraud. As a workers rights activist, who founded the ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • On The Rebound.
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered, They're Yours: Is there any person more vulnerable than a jilted lover on the rebound? Or, anything more certain than that the charmer, the predator, the glib spinner of lies and promises will seek such broken people out? Yes, of course, he will love every one of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Rabbi urges congregation to vote against Corbyn
    Though Jonathan Romain is a fairly high profile Rabbi, writing in several papers and popping up on TV and the radio, this story doesn't seem to have made it to the Guardian yet, so I'll take the unusual step of linking the Stephen Pollard edited Jewish Chronicle:Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • My absurdly optimistic prediction
    There's an election afoot, and that is when noted opinion formers such as myself get to make wild fools of ourselves by pretending we have the faintest idea what will happen.So, here is my absurdly optimistic prediction:Labour - 285Conservative - 262SNP - 53Lib Dems - 20PC - 5Ireland - 18 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • October ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image Credit: Increase Social Media Traffic & Website Traffic I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A mountain of a challenge in banning glyphosate
    Belinda Cridge I was reading my son a story last night. A great tale of derring-do of five mountaineers scaling the Matterhorn for the first time. One in the party had tried six times previously and failed, this was the last attempt before winter closed another season. They tried a ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • This government has a problem with secrecy
    As introduced, the Zero Carbon Bill included an expansive secrecy clause, which would have covered virtually all decisions by the Climate Change Commission over our most important policy area. The Ministry for the Environment admitted this was a mistake (or as they put it, an "oversight"), and the select committee ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A small New Zealand songbird that hides food for later use provides insights into cognitive evolutio...
    Rachael Shaw, Victoria University of Wellington When we think about animals storing food, the image that usually comes to mind is a squirrel busily hiding nuts for the winter. We don’t usually think of a small songbird taking down an enormous invertebrate, tearing it into pieces and hiding these titbits ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Referenda on Euthanasia – NZ First’s Victory – or a Major Miscalculation?
    . . NZ First’s success in putting the euthenasia bill to a public referenda may not be the victory they believe it to be. They may even have sounded the death-knell for a second Labour-NZ First-Green coalition. On 23 July this year, NZ First MP, Jenny Marcroft, submitted a Supplementary ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn the Mighty vs BoJo the Clown
    Interesting contrasting pictures in the Guardian:Corbyn gets the classic positive shot - low angle and a clear background, making him look authoritative (of course, being Corbyn, he doesn't do authoritative very well).Where as Johnson gets pictured with children at some sort of mad-hatters' tea party:Begging the question, who is the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Public health, externality, and vaccination
    Paternalism is contentious. Arguments for state action to protect us from ourselves are fraught. I come down pretty heavily on the anti-paternalism side of the argument, but I’ve heard respectable defences of paternalism. But policy around vaccination is hardly paternalistic. There’s a clear market failure that could be pointed to ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • Happy Halloween
    Its Halloween, so its time for annual pumpkin trepanning and chocolate eating ritual. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Twenty thousand leagues under the sea
    I’ve been reading Jules Verne’s novel Twenty thousand leagues under the sea, considered as one of the very earliest science fiction stories. In brief, Monsieur Aronnax and a couple of sidekicks are taken prisoner by Captain Nemo and his mysterious crew and treated to an underwater voyage around the world ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Disclosing the risks
    The climate crisis is going to mean some pretty big changes in our country, both from its impacts and the policies required to address them. Most obviously, whole suburbs are going to be underwater by 2100, meaning people and businesses are going to have to relocate to higher ground. But ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • MPI fails again
    Yesterday a dairy company was fined $483,000 for repeatedly failing to report listeria in its facility. Its a serious fine for a serious crime: listeria is a serious disease, and they were effectively trying to kill people with it. But there's another story hidden in there, and its not a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Gay Men Address Gender Identity
    Gay men see the excesses of trans activism and are increasingly speaking out.  A new Facebook group addressing ‘gender identity’ and contemporary trans activism has been set up for gay men, by gay men. The following is the group’s Statement of Intent, Group Rules, and link to the group for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s Going Gangbusters.
    Criminal Enterprises: Gangs are not welfare institutions. Nor are they a substitute for the family their members never had. They are ruthless, violent, criminal money-making machines. That is all.OKAY, first-things-first. Gangs exist for one purpose – and only one. They are a sure-fired, time-tested institution for making crime pay – ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    5 days ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    5 days ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    6 days ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    1 week ago
  • Week That Was: 2,000 teachers in two years
    We began the week by commemorating the New Zealand Wars and celebrating a major increase in the number of teachers. Then, we were busy supporting offenders into work and getting our rail back on track after years of underinvestment. And that's just the start! ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winning an election one conversation at a time
    In October I was sworn in as the Mayor of Lower Hutt. It’s the privilege of my life to serve Hutt people as their Mayor. There is something really special to be able to serve the community where I was raised, and where I live.   ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Closer cooperation with Korean horse racing industry
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters met with Korea Racing Authority Chairperson Nak Soon Kim in Seoul today to discuss closer cooperation between the New Zealand and Korean horse racing industries. As part of the visit to the Seoul Racecourse, Mr Peters witnessed ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Otago to lead digital creativity
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10 million to establish Otago as the centre of New Zealand’s creative digital industry over the next ten years, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “The initiative will bring us closer to the vision of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Young Otago students encouraged to take on forestry careers
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF)’s skills and employment programme will help young Otago people into long-term forestry careers, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Te Ara Mahi will invest $63,000 in the 2020 school year to support eight 17 and 18 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF backing Dunedin’s waterfront ambitions
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will support local plans to revitalise and stimulate economic development opportunities in Otago, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The four Regional Economic Development Ministers have approved an in-principle investment of $19.9 million towards the region’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • M. Bovis eradication progress welcomed
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is pleased to have received the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) report on the Coalition Government’s Mycoplasma bovis eradication efforts, which shows significant progress in the fight against the disease. New Zealand First Spokesperson for Primary Industries, Mark Patterson, says the report’s findings ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF boosts Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sector
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development Hon David Parker, Minister for Trade and Export Growth The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing to support economic growth opportunities for Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sectors, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Trade and Export Minister David Parker announced today. Almost $20 million ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister Peters discusses Pacific challenges and denuclearisation in Seoul
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters and his South Korean counterpart, Kang Kyung-wha, discussed in Seoul today opportunities to work more closely in the Pacific and the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Mr Peters and Minister Kang confirmed New Zealand and the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF supports high speed broadband for marae at Parihaka Pa
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development  Hon Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Māori Development The three marae in the historic Parihaka Pa complex in Taranaki have been upgraded to high speed broadband with the support of the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “Connecting the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advancing Pacific Partnerships 2019 launched
    Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence Minister of Defence Ron Mark will today launch the Advancing Pacific Partnerships 2019 Defence Assessment  during a speech at Te Papa.  The Assessment outlines how Defence will partner with our Pacific Island neighbours and invest in Pacific regional security architecture. The Plan aligns with the Coalition ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF funding could transform Gisborne company into “beacon of employment” in two years
    A new Provincial Growth Fund investment could create about 80 new jobs in Gisborne over the next two years, turning a local small business into a “beacon of employment” in the process. Regional Economic Development Parliamentary Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau said the PGF’s Te Ara Mahi funding stream would provide $1.6m ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: Two years of progress
    This week, we’re taking action on climate change, expanding trades education – and celebrating two years of progress! ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs to visit the Republic of Korea and Japan
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters will travel to the Republic of Korea and Japan next week. “The Republic of Korea and Japan are two of New Zealand’s closest partners in the region with whom we share common values and ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand to lead Bougainville Referendum Regional Police Support Mission
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters has announced today that New Zealand is leading a police support mission in Bougainville as the region prepares to vote in a non-binding referendum on its political future. “New Zealand has accepted an invitation ...
    3 weeks ago
  • We’re taking action on climate change
    “I refuse to accept the challenge of climate change is too hard to solve.” – Jacinda Ardern ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Shane Jones annoyed at “elevated sense of entitlement from a lot of immigrant leaders”
    New Zealand First MP Shane Jones is defending Immigration New Zealand (INZ) after it instructed officials to stop granting visas as an exception to instructions. He has also lashed out at immigrant leaders upset with the tightening of the rules, saying they had an “elevated sense of entitlement”. Members of ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand public likely to vote on euthanasia bill thanks to NZ First
    A change to the End of Life Choice Bill was passed in Parliament, meaning if politicians decide to vote for the law it must be approved by the public first. A binding referendum was a condition insisted on by New Zealand First, and Jenny Marcroft’s supplementary order paper (SOP) successfully ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Tairāwhiti Workforce development projects get $1.6m PGF boost
    Fletcher Tabuteau, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), through its skills and employment programme, Te Ara Mahi, is investing a further $1.6m into Tairāwhiti’s workforce development, said Parliamentary Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau. “This PGF funding follows on from significant PGF investment earlier this ...
    3 weeks ago
  • NZ First welcomes primary sector support for climate change plan
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says the Government’s steps to reduce farm livestock emissions are necessary and timely. Today the Government and farming leaders announced a plan to measure and price emissions at the farm level by 2025. “Many farmers ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Criminal Cases Review Commission established
    An important safety valve has been added to New Zealand’s criminal justice system with the third reading of the Criminal Cases Review Commission Bill today. The Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) will investigate claimed miscarriages of justice. “We’ve seen how our justice system can very occasionally get things spectacularly wrong, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Racing Industry destined to be on-track
    Racing Minister Winston Peters welcomes the tabling of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) 2019 Annual Report in Parliament today. He says the 2019 Annual Report marks the point when New Zealand’s racing industry’s decline was arrested and a turnaround started. RITA’s 2019 Annual Report recorded an industry net profit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • New Zealand firefighter support to Queensland
    The New Zealand Government is today sending 21 firefighters to help fight the ongoing catastrophic Australian bushfires. “The fires in Australia are in some of the toughest, most challenging conditions ever,” says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin.  “As of yesterday morning, there were 100 active bushfire-related incidents across Queensland and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Supporting all schools to succeed
      More frontline support for schools through a new education agency, as part of a redesigned Ministry of Education More support for principals and school boards including through a new centre of leadership and local leadership advisor roles New independent disputes panels for parents and students Management of school property ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Reform to support better outcomes for Māori learners and whānau
    The Government’s reform of the Tomorrow’s Schools system is a watershed moment in education and an opportunity to create meaningful change for ākonga Māori and their whānau, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis said today. “Last year through Kōrero Mātauranga | Education Conversation, Māori teachers, parents, ākonga, whānau, hapū and iwi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Infrastructure pipeline growing
    Infrastructure Minister is welcoming the first of many updated project pipelines from the newly established New Zealand Infrastructure Commission today. The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga, has released an expanded pipeline of major capital projects – another crucial step towards delivering better infrastructure outcomes. “The first iteration of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Tighter firearms law to further improve safety
    Tougher gun laws designed to improve public safety through firearms prohibition orders are proposed in a new document released for public input. Police Minister Stuart Nash says firearms prohibition orders (FPOs) would give new powers to Police to ensure high-risk individuals come nowhere near firearms. “We have already prohibited the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New TVNZ chair & directors confirmed
    Andy Coupe has been confirmed as TVNZ’s new Board Chair. “Mr Coupe has strong commercial and capital markets experience and TVNZ has benefited from his technical knowledge of business and finance, as well as his extensive governance experience,” the Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Kris Faafoi said.  Andy ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Hutt Road cycle path officially opened
    Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter today officially opened a separated pathway, following the completion of the Kaiwharawhara Stream bridge, which will improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians along Hutt Road.  The $6.8m Hutt Road project provides a separated path for cycling and pedestrians, the replacement of informal parking ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Announcement of new Ambassador to Russia
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of career diplomat Si’alei van Toor as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Russia. “I’m pleased to appoint Ms van Toor to this position. She brings a wealth of experience to the role having previously served as Senior Trade Adviser to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update
    The Treasury’s 2019 Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) will be released on Wednesday December 11, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Coalition Government will publish the 2020 Budget Policy Statement at the same time, outlining the priorities for Budget 2020. Further details on arrangements for the release will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Giving a Boost to Kiwi small businesses
    A new initiative to better support small businesses through hands-on mentoring and advice has been launched by the Minister for Small Business. The first event in the Kiwi Business Boost series of regional workshops and online tools has been launched in Wairoa by Stuart Nash. “The Business Boost initiative combines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Nearly three quarters of Rolleston connected to UFB
    The latest Quarterly Connectivity Report shows that more and more New Zealanders are moving to Ultra-fast Broadband (UFB), with Rolleston having the highest uptake at 74 per cent, as at the end of September. “This means that nearly three quarters of Rolleston’s households and businesses have moved to ultra-fast services. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Historic day for landmark climate change legislation in New Zealand
    The passing of the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill will help ensure a safe planet for our kids and grandkids, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw said today. The landmark legislation which provides a framework to support New Zealanders to prepare for, and adapt to, the effects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Release of Oranga Tamariki Practice Review
    The review of Oranga Tamariki practice around the planned uplift of a Hastings baby in May shows significant failings by the Ministry and that the planned and funded changes to shift from a child crisis service to a proper care and protection service need to be accelerated, Children’s Minister Tracey ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Minister wishes students success in exams
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins has wished students the best of luck for this year’s NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams which start tomorrow. Around 140,000 students will have participated in 119 NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams by the end of the exam period on 3 December. “I want to ...
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    6 days ago
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