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


    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

    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.


    [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

    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


    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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    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    7 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    7 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    1 week ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    1 week ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    1 week ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    2 weeks ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago

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