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Right desperate to sully Clark legacy

Written By: - Date published: 10:41 am, February 8th, 2009 - 38 comments
Categories: uncategorized - Tags:

clark-and-flagWhen John Key was elected he was wise enough to be magnanimous in victory, acknowledging Helen Clark’s considerable skill and integrity throughout her term as one of our longest serving Prime Ministers.

Since that time however, Key’s underlings have begun another death by a thousands cuts campaign – this time on the public’s memory and perception of Clark’s time in office. They know Clark is just too popular and too highly respected by too many people to just come out with an overt slime campaign, so instead they manufacture mealy-mouthed oblique back-handers that do their best to sound balanced and reasonable without sounding like it’s just outright sour grapes.

Like Farrar’s “I have generally regarded Clark as an able political administrator – as have most of the public…. But I do have some concerns. To me the pre 2005 Helen Clark is different to the post 2005 Clark. I’m not sure what happened, but somewhere along the way Helen seemed to lose her previously reliable judgement.” Or Roughan’s “Clark good but not great”, a tragic Herald attempt to devalue Clark winning the Herald’s “Greatest Living New Zealander” poll. Or National’s backtracking about how Labour had managed the economy competently, but somehow accruing surpluses during times of prosperity in preparation for leaner times ahead was “irresponsible”. There are many more examples, but for a quick reference just skim through the lines being attempted by our resident trolls.

With 1000 Cuts campaigns it’s not about one king PR hit – each cut in itself seems fairly innocuous – it’s about sowing seeds of doubt then repeating the memes often enough that audiences start to assume they are true. They erode their targets slowly but inexorably.

So why can’t the right just leave Clark’s legacy be? Well, because they can’t afford to.

They know that in 30-odd months or so, the New Zealand public will be looking back wistfully at the Clark administration as a better time, with a PM that could always be trusted to be on top of her game, and trusted to lead with prudence and certainty – whether you liked her or not. In 2011 National can’t afford to be running against a party that gave New Zealand its greatest PM in living memory, especially when we’ll all have suffered a lot more economic hardship by then. For all his talents, Key’s dithering and inexperience against a backdrop of increasing social and economic turmoil won’t compare well to a nostalgic memory of Clark and Labour.

So for the right those memories really need to be poisoned before they take root. Expect a lot more revisionist histories from the right in the coming months and years.

38 comments on “Right desperate to sully Clark legacy”

  1. sweeetdisorder 1

    Sprout

    Are you really saying the 2011 election is going to be about the ghost of Helen Clark’s term as PM vrs National? So, you don’t really think the current Labour lot is much chop then if all they will do is hark back to the days of HC? Goff will utter nothing for the next 30 months but why everything was better under HC.

    Great game plan guys. See you in 2017 when you get tired of being in opposition and decide to go to the people on actual ideas.

  2. Felix 2

    sd,
    Are you really saying the 2011 election is going to be about the ghost of Helen Clark’s term as PM vrs National?

    Are you really saying it won’t be an element?

  3. I think Helen will be among people like her at the UN, and wont be factor, if the world comes out of this crisis, the sitting Government will get back.

  4. felixthehousecat 4

    Felix, your rapier wit wins the argument, again.

  5. pdr 5

    First time I’ve commented here – but I think you’re over reading the situation wildly.

    I don’t think “the right” is desperate to do anything positive or negative to Clark’s legacy and that their view is pretty much along the line of Keys comments on her …. something along the lines of being a well respected PM and a patriotic NZer .. and from their interactions since the election they appear to actually get along pretty positively.

    I really think your chasing shadows on this.

  6. Nick C 6

    Or maybe the individual commentators are just stating their own opinion and arent a part of some vast right wing conspiricy to destory Clarks reputation?

  7. Daveski 7

    You make a reasonable point about the right (or at least some) trying to downplay Clark’s legacy. However, like a number of others here, you are just as guilty of sanctifying Clark.

    In many respects, she was a polarising figure not dissimilar to Muldoon. She was after all the best political operator since Muldoon.

    The NZH survey was not scientific – the election results more so.

    Sure Clark leaves a strong legacy in parts. In other parts (conveniently and consistently overlooked here), much less so. She let her own personality politics get in the way of building relationship with Maori. Even left wing commentators are commenting on the difference here.

    It’s hard to argue that Clark lost some of her mojo after 2005 – altho many here (as with your post) would see such a view as heretical. Her handling of Winston Peters alone shows that but wait for the revisionists to blame everyone but Clark.

    I’m NOT trying to damn Clark – I think she impressed all with her strength, leadership and intellect. She will fit in well at the UN. But the campaign to sanctify Clark and avoid any blemishes is nearly as bad as the KB campaign to denigrate her achievements.

  8. Felix 8

    Felix, your rapier wit wins the argument, again

    ??? It was a straightforward question. I see you trollin.

  9. IrishBill 9

    Sprout, while I agree the right desires to underplay Clark’s achievements I don’t think it’s by any means a concerted effort. Rather I think that a series of rightwing commentators have found themselves redundant in the face of a change of government and have shifted to their pre-election defaults.

    Their problem is that just as the left will have to cool its heels and wait for the honeymoon to finish with JK and co before they can start getting real traction on issues, any attempt to run down the opposition now is going to look stupid and mean. Quite a few right-wingers understand this (even DPF seems to have some basic sense of it) but when there’s column inches/posts to fill and they lack the imagination to take their argument elsewhere then they will continue to make these attacks.

    In dpf’s case the situation is compounded by the need to throw some meat to his dogs every so often for fear they permanently stray.

  10. felixthehousecat 10

    Don’t answer a Q with a Q Felix. Its bad manners eh bro.

    IrishBill: and you’re banned for a week.

  11. Mr Magoo 11

    Helen Clark was a brilliant politician. You can argue about whether you liked her or not, but it will never change that fact.

    Unfortunately the political game is not a nice one. Part of that is the fault of money and corruption, but a great part is simply the failure of our society – mainly in terms of apathy and greed. You cannot play nice and make it, it is just a fact. Idealists are punished with obscurity to the sound of a mocking media. (Look to the treatment of the greens for great examples of this in action – although I am not excluding them entirely from this net)

    In effect you do not rise to power without being compromised in some way along the way. Helen Clark was no different and it should not be held against her. I think her comment on the Lange/Roger situation in the past gives the best example I can think of:
    Helen Clark talking to Virginia Myers 1985:
    But I have a strong sense of self-preservation. I didn't come this far to be burnt out in a hail of gunfire.

    Now you can get on your wooden, armchair horse about how immoral this statement is and blah blah blah. But the reality is that had she not taken this line, most of us probably would not even remember her name. Most certainly she would never had made PM.

    If you want to achieve in politics you have to compromise. Your position (e.g. anything to do with Winston Peters), yourself (e.g. Lange/Anderton incident above) and even your party at times.

    This is because the alternative to getting most of what you want done is to get almost none of it done from a back bench or outside of parliment. While many people llike to delude themselves into pretending they live in a black and white world we do not. Relative morality IS the reality. Whether you acknowledge it or not you are certain to be using it everyday.

    The legacy of the last labour government is embodied by Helen Clark. When people go to the polls next, most will be comparing National’s term to the last political term. In fact this time it will be the only political term to draw comparisons from because it was SO LONG….
    To say that this will not be a factor is naive to the extreme. To say that the vast PR machine employed at great expense by National and Co. does not know this and is not doing something about it is just insulting to them.
    It may not be priority one of their plan, certainly not with managing all the fallout that this term will produce, but it will be in there.

    DISCLAIMER: I never voted for her or her party. Nor am I intending to in 2011 short of some sort of labour revolution which is about 99.9% unlikely.

  12. mike 12

    Turn the page lefties – hc was good for what she believed in, people got over her now shes gone. move on

  13. Clint 13

    Page is stuck, can only read 1999 – – 2008. Revisionist.

  14. rjs131 14

    “DISCLAIMER: I never voted for her or her party. Nor am I intending to in 2011 short of some sort of labour revolution which is about 99.9% unlikely.”

    Translation I vote Green

  15. higherstandard 15

    Who cares how Magoo votes – he’s dead on the money with his comment.

  16. Oxy 16

    You would think after your own “thousand cuts” smear campaign on John Key completely failed to fire you would realise the futility of such an effort. But no. Here you extol the virtues of ‘anything you can find’ co-ordinated smear campaign and in projecting it onto National reveal yourselves as the worst kind of conspiracy theorists: those who are trying to conspire amongst themselves and can’t help but believe those they smeared are doing the same.

    I think its about time to end “The Standard”. It has become a complete embaressment, without a single post of merit in several months.

    IrishBill: Why on earth do you think we care what you consider to be of merit? You can’t even spell “embarrassment”. Take a week ban for trolling/insulting the blog owners.

  17. marco 17

    Hmmm Oxy I was going to write something different until you jogged my memory. The very reason I didnt vote Labour was because I disagreed with their campaign of fear against John Key, they really alienated themselves from the public and showed how desperate they were to cling onto power.
    Complaining that the right are now doing the same thing is a bit like the pot calling the kettle black.
    Sprout you should perhaps lower the hipocrisy a little.

  18. Jimbo 18

    My own view is that it’s too early to talk about “Clark’s legacy”. Her legacy wasn’t “completed” when the last election was decided (good thing too – most of the electorate voted against her). We’ll only know what her legacy is when we see whether her policies work and/or survive the test of time.

  19. Adders 19

    “The very reason I didnt vote Labour was because I disagreed with their campaign of fear against John Key, they really alienated themselves from the public and showed how desperate they were to cling onto power.”

    Like National trying to make out Clark’s husband was gay? How desperate was that?

    How forgetful.

  20. Mr Magoo 20

    “DISCLAIMER: I never voted for her or her party. Nor am I intending to in 2011 short of some sort of labour revolution which is about 99.9% unlikely.’

    Translation I vote Green

    What’s funny is that you think this is a point worth making even if it were true.
    There is more than one left alternative and I am also Maori. I could also split votes.

    Of course as higherstandard has pointed out, my specific voting record does not validate or invalidate the points I made. The point of the disclaimer was merely to point out that I had not agreed with Helen or Labour to the point where I would vote for them at all and thus this was not motivated by blind devotion.
    On reflection it was probably redundant.

  21. Andy Freemand 21

    This is all very well and good. You have identified the techniques they’re going to use – so what will the left do to counter this?

    Nothing? Will we sit back and say, “Oh shit, we saw it coming and didn’t do anything.”

    Don’t just let the Tories set the agenda – you should use this forum to activate the left to change.

  22. Concerned of Tawa 22

    Oxy’s points about the double standards re Clark and Labours smear campaign against Key last year are completely valid and he receives a weeks ban.

    Any dissenting opinion on this blog is simply labelled trolling and promptly banned.

    Why?

    [lprent: Read the Policy and figure it out. We ban for reasons – and they aren’t for having dissenting opinions. It pretty much comes down to acting like a dickhead with opinions that they cannot backup, attacking other commentators without having a point of argument, or attacking the people working on this site. Sometimes we will ban because someone is just a frigging nuisance to the moderators – they generate too much work. Generally anything that attempts to make this site deteriorate.
    If people want to do those kinds of things, then there are sites with comments sections dedicated to disruption.]

  23. Felix 23

    CoT,
    If you actually read Oxy’s comment and IB’s reply it’s very clear why he was banned and it’s nothing to do with dissenting opinion.

    Open your eyes, this blog is chock full of dissenting opinion.

  24. Chris G 24

    “Like National trying to make out Clark’s husband was gay?”

    Yeah or the NZ sucks campaign.. then upon taking office Key makes a youtube video in a salmon shirt harping on about how fantastic NZ is!

    We are a bit prone to amnesia arent we? The vid was unfortunately taken down.. pity I didnt download it.

  25. QoT 25

    CoT … at least five commenters have expressed disagreement on this very post and, stunningly, not been banned for their efforts. Of course, they could all be sockpuppets as yet undetected, but I doubt it.

  26. Tim Ellis 26

    I personally believe that Helen Clark has been the most masterful politician of her generation by a long degree. She dominated the Labour Party for the best part of two decades, and government for three terms. Among her own caucus and for a long time during her time in Parliament, she was peerless.

    But she also had some pretty major flaws, as all good leaders do. I pretty much agree with Magoo’s points in their entirety. Sure, some on the right want to demonise her and ignore her strong qualities, but that motivation is no less deserving than the attempts by some on the Left to deify her and ignore her weak points.

    I think she will make a strong contribution to the UN. I pity Phil Goff however. She has left him with a Party with no realistic leaders for the next ten years, and was such a driving force for the caucus in her own right that once she’s gone, he will never be PM.

  27. CH 27

    CoT,

    You have to remember that this place is run by card carrying commmies, labor party members and union officials. All of whom are very bitter that they no longer have an avenue to the levers of power.

    They have a very blinkered view of the world and in their own ways, at least as much as right wing religious fundies only their ‘religion’ is socialism, PC handwringing, anti-religious prejudice and central state control.

    IrishBill: and you have to remember that you comment as our guest on a server and site we pay for. Behave accordingly.

  28. Paul Robeson 28

    ahh Murray and CH… if we compare your ilk (Garrett, Hide and any number of the Nats depending on how well the gags are fastened..) to Helen it is only going to prove her legacy as one of the few genuine public servants New Zealand has had in the highest office.

    having just attended a church where the Kennedy assasination was attributed to a curse placed on him as a result of the sin of his father’s bootlegging during prohibition (a church with a congregation of around 800,000 you understand) I’ll take my chances with those who chose not to use this kind of logic to set government policies.

  29. vto 29

    I agree with Farrar, Clark is not one of NZ’s great PMs. She was certainly competent, but lost it at the end. Labour’s actual campaign of negativity and attack exemplified that lost nature.

    Sheesh Mr Irishbill, lots of banning. Seems like the authors and some posters can attack and abuse with reckless abandon, but cannot handle their own medicine in return.

    Kinda matches the actual thread..

  30. lprent 30

    vto: Look at it another way – great compared to whom? If you exclude sports-people (and I do) there really aren’t that many living great people around NZ, let alone great politicians dead or alive. It is a small country.

    Sure Helen isn’t a saint (and I’m sure that I know more about her flaws than most people). But the last really effective politician we had was Robert Muldoon. His heart was probably in the right place. But he was monumentally dangerous to our futures. That was more than 30 years ago.

    I never had much time for Lange because he wasn’t very competent. Holyoake was vaguely competent – but really didn’t do anything except avoid making decisions that had to be made. You have to look back to the 30’s and 40’s prior to that. Helen followed that policy of changing society incrementally and setting the pattern for the next 50 years. Even the Nat’s explicitly acknowledge that in their major policy – after all they are Labour-lite for a reason.

    Helen has been effective, worked toward a better future and got a good way towards it, and generally hasn’t screwed up in the long-term things that I value. The contrast to John Key with his meaningless phrases that he doesn’t seem to understand himself couldn’t be more striking.

    As for the banning. We’re getting the periodic influx of morons who don’t read the policy and think that they can just trash the place. We tend to run a pre-emptive strategy to educate them on their first troll-level comment.

    Clint Heine of course is a different matter. We tend to tolerate people with congenital deficiencies – in his case an inability to coherently form an argument.

  31. Kerry 31

    I think there are already a good number of people praying that Helen was still our PM.

    I mean, all you have to do is see an intervew with old John boy or see him disgracing himself by dancing under the influence on 1 news lastnight……disgraceful!

    The right wingers can bitch and moan all they like about helen…..but NZ will never have as good a leader as her so eat kaka right wing bum wipes!!!

  32. Kerry 32

    PS I would rather be a communist then a mental defective right wing extremist!

    Jealous Jealous Jealous cause the nats have a crap cabinat lineup and an embarrasing leader who as each week gos on shows himself to be more and more out of his depth!!!

    Helen was right…and we’ve thrown it all away on someone who wants to be everyones mate……..

  33. vto 33

    You’re right lprent re the incremental changes and changing the tack a little. Clearly there was a plan and it seems to have been implemented in a competent and complete-ish manner. Which is all good – thats what the voters returned.

    But as for her greatness, compared to our few ‘great’ PMs, I think she falls short. Mostly in visionary and charismatic leadership and in not really forging the country ahead – especially when she had such a wonderful and lucky economic climate. Her own plan, as you say one of ‘increment’, in fact precludes greatness such is its boringness.

    But hey that’s just my 2c. I think a few people think she is great because it is all quite recent and compared to the malaise any other parties were in pre-1999 and up to 2006/7 she stands out. That will fade once time starts to stretch out and comparisons become clearer.

  34. IrishBill 34

    vto, I’m tiring of trolls (left and right). Just ask the ‘sod, he’s on a five week ban.

  35. Tigger 35

    Kerry – you nailed it. Key wants to be our friend. Well you know what John, when you vote against Civil Unions and then turn up at the Big Gay Out dancing like someone’s drunk uncle then you deserve the name ‘two faced tosser’. You can’t spit on me and then try to shake my hand. Won’t work. Don’t like you. Don’t trust you.

  36. randal 36

    nice one sprout
    the fundamental basis to the national party has nothing to do with production or gdp or anything else except psychological domination of anyone or thing
    it would be physical domination but that is against the law
    natoinal will never have anyone of Helen Clarks stature because they only think about themselves and not the good of society as a whole
    fleas really

  37. What changed in 2005 was the right realized they weren’t going to win with any semblance of honesty. They really stepped up the character assassination, adhom attacks and lying, in part using dpf and the whales blogs.

    Any one else having a bit of a laugh recently with the kiwi bloggers trying to claim the left are nazi sympathizers? almost as if someone hit a nerve with them.

  38. nznative 38

    i hate to rain on your parade but clarke was not that flash from where I stand .

    But then again I see Nz politics like this :

    Labor = bad and rotten
    Natianal = plain evil

    Helen did some good …………… like keep us out of the Iraq invasion .

    But at the end of the day she was just another NZ politician

    …….. and when I go to the toilet I refer to it as ” going for a right honorable”

    Just because the natianals are WORSE than labor means you should get off your high horse .

    Clarke was no great new zealander

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    Westminster voting intention:CON: 44% (+3)LAB: 28% (-1)LDEM: 14% (-1)BREX: 6% (-)via @OpiniumResearch, surveyed this weekChgs. w/ 08 Nov— Britain Elects (@britainelects) 16 November 2019 This, of course, doesn't look good.  Labour have been chucking big, headline grabbing policies left, right and centre ... Well, maybe not right.  Left, left ...
    5 days ago
  • A coward’s ploy.
    Some readers may remember that I mentioned last year that I was applying for NZ citizenship. I filled out the paperwork and had my original citizenship interview in February. Everything went well until they discovered that, because I had spent five months in the US in 2017, I had not ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Left censorship and exclusion against gender-critical women: a Marxist critique
    by Deirdre O’Neill It is becoming quite acceptable for certain sections of the left to declare that people like me – women who are ‘gender critical’ – should not be allowed in leftist or anarchist spaces. Leaving aside the arrogance and implicit authoritarianism of this claim, its lack of critical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • “Uncertainty” can be better solved with a better grasp of life’s inherent complexities…
    There is an article in The Conversation, written by Jeremy P. Shapiro (Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University), about what he sees as the psychologically-based underpinnings of three main matters that seem to vex people all around the planet. The article is titled “The Thinking ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    6 days ago
  • Citizens vs the Rogue Deep State
    . .   Blogger Martyn Bradbury has won his case against unreasonable search and surveillance against the NZ Police; and subsequent Police attempts to produce evidence in secrecy, in a closed Court. His case highlights a disturbing growing trend in Aotearoa New Zealand for State power to be used against ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • Massey University’s free speech policy double-plus-good
    The Committee of Disobedient Women has intercepted an email from Dr Emma Eejut, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Massey University to the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Jan Thomas. Dear Jan, Thank you for your courageous move.  I think 10 pages of blether** should tie any of the students game enough to try holding ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Unacceptable
    That's the only response to the findings of the Ombudsman's investigation into LGOIMA practices at the Christchurch City Council:My investigation identified serious concerns about the Council’s leadership and culture, and its commitment to openness and transparency. In particular, Council staff raised concerns with me about various methods employed by some ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • There is what corruption looks like
    NZ First seems to be nakedly trying to enrich itself from public office:A powerful New Zealand First figure helped establish a forestry company that then pushed for money from two key funding streams controlled by a New Zealand First Minister. An RNZ investigation has found Brian Henry, lawyer for Winston ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Escape from Manus Island
    Behrouz Boochani is an award winning author and journalist. He is also a refugee, who for the past six years has been detained in Australia's offshore gulag on Manus Island, and in Papua New Guinea. But last night, with the cooperation of the WORD Christchurch festival and Amnesty International, he ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When World’s Collide.
    Different Strokes: If a multicultural immigration policy imposes no obligation on immigrant communities to acknowledge and ultimately embrace their host nation’s most cherished traditions and values, then how is that nation to prevent itself from being reduced to a collection of inward-looking and self-replicating ethnic and cultural enclaves?THE COALITION GOVERNMENT’S ...
    1 week ago
  • Could There Be Method In Massey University’s Madness?
    Protective Zone: Reading the rules and guidelines released by Massey University, it is impossible to avoid the conclusion that its governing body considers the whole concept of free speech a disruptive threat to the orderly imparting of orthodox academic knowledge.IN TRUE ORWELLIAN fashion, Massey University has announced its commitment to ...
    1 week ago
  • How does poor air quality from bushfire smoke affect our health?
    Brian Oliver, University of Technology Sydney New South Wales and Queensland are in the grip of a devastating bushfire emergency, which has tragically resulted in the loss of homes and lives. But the smoke produced can affect many more people not immediately impacted by the fires – even people many ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: We need more trees, not less
    Farmers held a hate-march on Parliament today, complete with MAGA hats, gun-nut signs, and gendered insults. While supposedly about a grab-bag of issues - including, weirdly, mental health - it was clear that the protest was about one thing, and one thing only: climate change. And specifically, forestry "destroying" rural ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Holy bin chickens: ancient Egyptians tamed wild ibis for sacrifice
    Sally Wasef, Griffith University and David Lambert, Griffith University These days, not many Aussies consider the ibis a particularly admirable creature. But these birds, now colloquially referred to as “bin chickens” due to their notorious scavenging antics, have a grandiose and important place in history – ancient Egyptian history, to ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The IGIS annual report: Dead letters and secret law
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security released their annual report today, and I've been busy reading through it. In amongst the usual review of what they've been doing all year, there's a few interesting bits. For example, a discussion on "agency retention and disposal of information", which points out that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A referendum on bigotry
    The End of Life Choice Bill passed its third reading last night, 69 - 51. Thanks to a compromise with NZ First - which looks to have been necessary on the final numbers - the commencement of the bill will be subject to a referendum. Given the ugliness of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why municipal waste-to-energy incineration is not the answer to NZ’s plastic waste crisis
    Trisia Farrelly, Massey University New Zealand is ranked the third-most-wasteful country in the OECD. New Zealanders produce five times the global daily average of waste per person – and they are getting more wasteful, producing 35% more than a decade ago. These statistics are likely to get worse following China’s ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Political parties and GMOs: we all need to move on
    Recently more than 150 post-graduate students and young scientists presented an open letter to the Green Party via The Spinoff, encouraging them to reconsider their position on genetic modification. Their target is tackling climate change issues.[1] Can any party continue to be dismissive about genetic modification (GM) contributing to ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Class, Identity Politics and Transgender Ideology
    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    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 The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    2 weeks ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    2 weeks ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: Tackling child poverty
    It's been a great week of progress: we've celebrated Children's Day, we've made communities safer with 1800 new police, and we've seen almost 90% of eligible schools take up Government funding to scrap school donations - taking pressure off the families of more than 416,000 students. ...
    12 hours ago
  • New measures for wood processing boost
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister of Forestry The Government will further strengthen New Zealand’s wood processing sector as part of our focus on ‘value over volume’ in our forestry industry, Forestry Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones will today meet with forestry representatives in Northland to signal new measures to help the ...
    15 hours ago
  • New high tech traps will reduce the need for 1080 poison
    New Zealand First are celebrating the announcement of an investment of $3.5 million into five new trapping devices. These are a range of bait and trap devices, all designed to be left unattended for long periods of time. NZ First conservation spokesperson Jenny Marcroft says that this latest development will ...
    2 days ago
  • Cowboy clampers will be stymied
    Clayton Mitchell, Spokesperson for Consumer Affairs The ‘wheel clamping’ Bill that will cap clamper fees to $100 passed its third reading in Parliament today. New Zealand First welcomes The Land Transport (Wheel Clamping) Amendment Bill to combat predatory wheel clamping behaviour in what is currently a largely unregulated business. Cowboy clampers are: gouging ...
    3 days ago
  • Mental Health Commission back on track
    Jenny Marcroft, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First welcomes the passage of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill through its first reading in Parliament. “Today’s progress takes serious action on the mental health and addiction crisis the country is facing,” says New Zealand First Health Spokesperson Jenny Marcroft. “The re-establishment ...
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand’s key assets are not for sale: national interest test delivered
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries Today the Government announced the delivery of the promise to protect New Zealand interests by applying a new National Interest Test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. This further strengthening of the Overseas Investment Act will ...
    4 days ago
  • National interest test added to protect New Zealanders’ interests
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high-risk assets to overseas buyers. Under current Overseas Investment Act (OIA) rules, assets such as ports and airports, telecommunications infrastructure, electricity and ...
    4 days ago
  • Electoral law breach allegations
    Rt Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First Allegations raised this morning by Stuff Limited / Fairfax concern a party matter but I am confident that New Zealand First has operated within electoral laws, now and for the last 27 years. Declarable donations were declared to the Electoral Commission. Our ...
    4 days ago
  • Wayne Brown hits back at critics: Ports of Auckland has to move
    The chairman of the Upper North Island Supply Chain Strategy (UNISCS) working group, Wayne Brown, has hit back at critics of his group’s recommendations to relocate the Ports of Auckland cargo operations to Whangarei’s deepwater port of Northport. The working group's recommendation to close Auckland waterfront to all but cruise ...
    5 days ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    5 days ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    1 week ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    1 week 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks ago

  • PGF approves wind turbines funding for Stewart Island
    Stewart Island/Rakiura has been granted $3.16 million from the Provincial Growth Fund to help build two wind turbines, putting the island on a path to sustainable electricity generation, Environment Minister David Parker announced today. “Stewart Island is our third largest island, after the North and South Islands, and it is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • NZ economy in good shape amid global headwinds
    A major new report on the global economy shows New Zealand is in good shape amid increased global headwinds. The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has just released its latest Economic Outlook. It shows the OECD group of economies is forecast to grow between 1.6% and 1.7% across ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Milestone of 1800 new Police officers
    The Coalition commitment to add 1800 new Police officers to frontline policing has been achieved with the graduation of 59 constables from the Royal New Zealand Police College today. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters say today’s graduation means 1825 new Police have been deployed all ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • PM appoints business leaders to APEC Business Advisory Council
    Ensuring APEC work gets input from diverse New Zealand business and trade interests is behind three new appointments to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says. Rachel Taulelei, Malcolm Johns and Toni Moyes have been appointed to represent New Zealand on the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • PM speech notes for Trans-Tasman Business Circle
    Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tatou katoa. Thank you for having me to speak today. To start, I’d like to acknowledge Sharron Lloyd, the General Manager of the Trans–Tasman Business Circle, the partners for this event Westpac’s  David McLean, and Derek McCormack from  AUT, and, of course ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Otago Regional Council given deadline for freshwater management plan
    A four-month investigation by former Environment Court judge Professor Peter Skelton found that Otago’s freshwater planning system is not fit for purpose to manage the region’s rivers, lakes and aquifers and that the Council has inadequate rules for the taking of water and the discharge of nutrients.   “Existing planning provisions ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • LGNZ Rural and Provincial Sector Speech
      Introduction Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This is the first opportunity I’ve had to speak to an LGNZ meeting since the local elections, and I’m delighted to see the fresh faces of newly elected mayors. To returning mayors here today, as well as chief ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand to attend G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Japan
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters departs New Zealand today to attend the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Nagoya at the invitation of this year’s G20 President, Japan. “This is the first time New Zealand will attend a G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and we are deeply honoured that it is at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ambassador to the European Union announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of diplomat Carl Reaich as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to the European Union. “The Ambassador to the EU is one of the most important and senior roles in New Zealand’s foreign service, advocating for New Zealand’s interests with the EU institutions,” Mr ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New inventions boost Predator Free 2050 effort
        Innovation and technology are behind five new tools to give nature a helping hand by helping eliminate predators, funded through the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage and Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. “The new tools will be trialled in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • APEC 2021 Bill passes first reading
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation 2021 (APEC 2021) Bill in Parliament today. The temporary bill supports New Zealand’s security preparations for hosting the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum in 2021. “APEC is the leading economic and trade forum ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Making progress for our kids
    The Government is making progress on improving the wellbeing of the one million New Zealanders under the age of 18,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on World Children’s Day. The Government has today recommitted to the most widely ratified human rights treaty in history – the United Nation’s Convention on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Māori women in business contribute to our economy, whānau and communities
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter has released a new report celebrating the contribution of Māori women in business across Aotearoa New Zealand. “Māori women are leaders in our communities, they employ many people and support our economy and our communities,” Julie Anne Genter said. The report, Ngā wāhine kaipakihi: ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Two schools on the way for Omokoroa
    Four parcels of land have been bought in Omokoroa, in the Western Bay of Plenty District, for an education facility that will accommodate both a primary and secondary school on a campus-like facility, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Two parcels were acquired from private land owners and two were ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Families Package helps over 1 million New Zealanders in first year
    1 million New Zealanders warmed by the Winter Energy Payment 36,000 families bank the Best Start Payment in first year 6,000 more families received the Family Tax Credit, 220,600 in total   They receive an increase too – from an average of $117 to $157 a week for Inland Revenue clients, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Clamp down on wheel clamping passes third reading
    New rules to clamp down on overzealous wheel clamping and extortionate fees charged in order to release a vehicle have passed their final stage in Parliament today. The Land Transport (Wheel Clamping) Amendment Bill has now passed its third reading. “These changes mean $100 will be the maximum wheel clamping ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill passes first hurdle
    An independent Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission is a step closer after it unanimously passed its first vote in Parliament today.  The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill lays the groundwork for establishing the Commission as a fully independent crown entity – delivering on a key recommendation of He Ara ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Boosting border security with electronic travel authority – now over 500,000 issued
    We’ve improved border security with the NZeTA, New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority, which helps us to screen travellers for border and immigration risks off-shore before they travel to New Zealand. It was launched in August and became mandatory on 1 October 2019. More than 500,000 NZeTAs have been issued since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Plan of action to protect seabirds
    A proposed national plan of action to reduce the number of seabirds caught in fisheries is being circulated for public feedback. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage say New Zealand is a global centre of seabird diversity with about 145 species in our waters. It has more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • National interest test added to overseas investment rules
    The Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. Associate Finance Minister David Parker said under current Overseas Investment Act rules, assets such as ports and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New housing part of support for Kaumātua
    The Government is building special housing to accommodate one of Aotearoa’s greatest taonga- our kaumātua, says the Minister for Māori Development, Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Speaking at a National Kaumātua Service Providers Conference in Rotorua today, the Minister reinforced the importance kaumātua play in maintaining and passing on mātauranga Māori, knowledge, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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