Starting early

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, May 21st, 2009 - 68 comments
Categories: mt albert - Tags:

I’m starting to feel a little sorry for Melissa Lee given the punching bag she’s become. True, she’s brought it on herself, but even I felt a little queasy watching the events at Auckland University yesterday. But for anyone who looked behind the “rising star” brand National was trying to sell us the warning signs were there from the start.

Here’s Melissa Lee in her first debate speech, on the Bail Amendment Bill:

Melissa Lee: “I would like Opposition members to read the victim impact report, to see what kind of damage these criminals do to innocent families. Perhaps they do not actually have the emotions to understand what it is like to be a victim. I mentioned it in my maiden speech—”

The text only hints at the tone Lee spoke in. Claiming that other parties’ MPs don’t give a damn about the victims of crime, that’s just going too far. Her first speech and she’s already crossing a line that few MPs ever cross even in the most heated debates. It provoked a strong response:

Clayton Cosgrove: “We heard Melissa Lee who apparently has a monopoly on sympathy and concern for victims. I say that is arrogant; I say that is patronising. Maybe when she has spent more than 5 minutes here she will know that every member of this Chamber has empathy and concern for the victims of tragedies when they happen out there. When the member has been here for more than 2 minutes she might lose the arrogant edge.”

Phil Goff: “The reason this side reacted as it did to Melissa Lee was that she arrogantly assumed that nobody on this side of the House could empathise with victims. I have had relations killed by people acting illegally. I can empathise, and I do not need to be told … that I do not understand how a victim feels or how the family of that victim feels.”

So, you can see why we predicted it was only a matter of time before her personality blew up her campaign.

68 comments on “Starting early ”

  1. Ianmac 1

    Perhaps she is Rankin-like and her purpose in life is to distract from the very serious problems that are being generated by her colleagues? While we throw stones at her, behind our backs Bill and John are……………

  2. Pat 2

    “So, you can see why we predicted it was only a matter of time before her personality blew up her campaign.”

    Yes you got that one right. But you got your other prediction very wrong:

    “Joyce isn’t going to drop her in it by announcing National will cancel the Waterview tunnel in favour of a surface motorway”.

  3. Tim Ellis 3

    Eddie, I don’t think I’m the only one who spotted the irony in your quotation of Cosgrove:

    Maybe when she has spent more than 5 minutes here she will know that every member of this Chamber has empathy and concern for the victims of tragedies when they happen out there.

    This was immediately preceded by Cosgrove saying:

    I say that is patronising.

    When did Clayton Cosgrove become the poster boy for the liberal Left? He always reminds me of a mini-me to Mike Moore.

    I note that you haven’t described Mr Cosgrove’s claim that Maori corrections institutions would be “holiday camps” as racist, although you were very quick to jump on Lee.

  4. Pascal's bookie 4

    “When did Clayton Cosgrove become the poster boy for the liberal Left?”

    Who said he was? Oh only you.

    “I note that you haven’t described Mr Cosgrove’s claim that Maori corrections institutions would be “holiday camps’ as racist,…”

    I’m quite happy to. Cosgrove should leave that shit alone. If he believes it, he should think a little harder and while he’s doing it STFU, if he doesn’t believe it and is only pandering to racists, he should stop it. The left doesn’t want, or need, those voters. national is welcome to them AFAIC.

  5. r0b 5

    I’m starting to feel a little sorry for Melissa Lee given the punching bag she’s become.

    I agree Eddie. I hate the cold and desperate politics that she stands for, but the poor woman herself has probably had enough. If she hasn’t been given food for thought by now, it’s never going to happen.

    There is a strong temptation, after the disgraceful right wing hounding of politicians in the last government (Helen Clark in particular), to descend to that level, repay like with like. But I hope that we on the left can in general rise above that temptation. Call them to account, take the micky, play hard and so on on, but no need to kick them when they’re down…

    • Kevin Welsh 5.1

      Fair comment r0b, although a few selective kicks while they are down is necessary from time to time.

      If Labour back off and always play nice, they can kiss goodbye the next general election.

    • Ron 5.2

      No! DO kick them when they’re down.

      People like Melissa Lee waltzed into Parliament on the tide against the last government. Most of use knew she had nothing to offer and wasn’t up to the job. She’s a useless bloody MP who can’t string a sentence together let alone argue intelliigently in favour or her own party’s policies. She thought she was in like Flynn and is now reaping the rewards of her arrogance. If we have to pick them off one by one let’s do that:

      Lockwood is useless and they shifted him off to one side – can’t get at him now
      Richard Worth – will make a headline or two again and is worth burying (no pun intended)
      Get on to the Bakshi thing.
      Bennett is faking it right now and is worth another crack as the stats start to pile up.
      Their are several other Melissa Lees who just haven’t had the chance to show their incompetance yet.
      Wait until you see the whites of there eyes and then keep firing until they’re down.

      • bilbo 5.2.1

        I have no problem with your wish to give politicians a hammering ….. most deserve it.

        I disagree with your point regarding Lockwood though, IMO he’s making a far better job of speaker than last few MPs we’ve had in the position.

  6. Tigger 6

    First of all, National or ACT would stomp Lee’s head into the ground while she was down if she was a Left wing MP so no sympathy for her here. It’s politics. Yes, it’s distasteful but then again lots of us don’t go into politics because we know this is what happens and we don’t like the idea of having to endure it. Lee’s a big girl – let her endure or sink.

    But Lee only has herself to blame (she said this stuff after all!) and she can easily play the downtrodden card and turn this to her advantage so I have no sympathy for her whatsover.

    It’s a good lesson to us all though – humility goes a long way. She shouldn’t have taken this candidate’s spot – she’s clearly not up to par to campaign like this – someone told her she was a high flyer and she believed it.

  7. vto 7

    So one of Lee’s first speeches revealed some less than savoury aspects of her persona.

    Same with Cullen and his maiden speech re ripping off farmers. Arrogance, envy, bitterness…

    Given Cullen survived I would suggest that it is not the bad bones of particular politicians that governs their survival it is their overall political talents.

    Lee and Cullen sit together in the same bad bones box. But one survived because of superior other skills, not the quality of their skeleton.

  8. I also feel sorry for Lee – I think she’s been badly let down by her party. But that quote from her speech is a perfect example of how she doesn’t quite ‘get it’ in terms of what a public figure can and cannot say.

  9. Tim Ellis 9

    It seems pretty apparent to me that Labour’s attacks on Lee, led by Mr Goff and Mr Mallard, have backfired and have created a backlash of sympathy for Lee. It wouldn’t surprise me if this is showing up in Labour’s polling, which would explain why Labour has started expressing sympathy and have gone quiet on further personal attacks against her.

    The tirade of abuse at yesterday’s AUSA meeting labelling her a racist is just gutter politics. As I read it, Labour seems to be having concerns about how well it can control its more rabid activists.

    • Daveo 9.1

      The guy who led the racism resolution, Omar Hamed, is a Unite organiser and no friend of Labour. I think it crossed the line too, as do most of the Labour and Green supporters I’ve spoken to.

      • Tim Ellis 9.1.1

        The resolution appeared to be supported quite vociferously by Labour and Green supporters at the AUSA meeting though Daveo. If these supporters thought Mr Hamed crossed the line, they didn’t shirk from supporting the resolution Daveo.

  10. The Voice of Reason 10

    My Melissa moment of the day was Matthew Hooten on TV3 this morning saying she needed media training. Um, isn’t that how she made her living before becoming a star?

    It shone through for me that when she had the brain freeze she expected the recording to stop while she collected her thoughts, as it would in a TV studio during the making of a scripted program. But this was wasn’t a ‘take two’ situation. It was live, it was politics and it was great TV.

    The other question that is bugging me at the moment is this; has any List MP ever gone on to win an electorate seat? My understanding is that the reverse usually happens. A couple of terms as the local MP, get some seniority and move to a safe list ranking.

    I think Nationals’ fundamental mistake here is putting up a candidate who has no electoral experiance whatsoever. The same applies to David Shearer, but I’m guessing he’s been involved in electorate campaigns in the past and at least has a working knowlege of what it takes to get people to tick your name on the ballot paper.

    • Tim Ellis 10.1

      Interesting question, VoR. Anne Tolley and Paula Bennett went on to win electorate seats after being list MPs, but the situation does seem to be quite rare under MMP. It does seem clear that the demands of being a list MP are very different to the demands of running an electorate campaign in a general election. Running an electorate campaign in a by-election is even more demanding again.

      I’m reminded that my local MP, Nikki Kaye, beat a list MP for the National Party nomination and then went on to beat Judith Tizard in Auckland Central.

      • Irascible 10.1.1

        Hey Timmy,Your NACT membership is showing thru in glorious transparency. you protest your non-NACT membership too much. Your use of the possessive to describe Kaye is too much.
        Face it being the paid apologist for the unsupportable embodiment of arrogance and prejudiced thinking with all the time you have at your “bank clerk job” readily makes you a target for an efficient employer using the Fire at Will act to question your productivity while in his employ.

        • Tim Ellis 10.1.1.1

          Thanks irascible. It’s always nice to have my personal integrity called into question when I sign in using my own name, by an anonymous person like you, who prefers personal attacks rather than debating the issues.

          I salute your courage.

          • Irascible 10.1.1.1.1

            Hardly questioning your personal integrity Timmy. Just asking how you can justify using your employer’s time to cruise the blog sphere to defend the NACT party?
            Hardly a personal attack either unless questioning your bias is a personal attack in which case your reaction demonstrates a justified question.

      • inpassing 10.1.2

        Anne Tolley and Paula Bennett went on to win electorate seats after being list MPs

        Tim, do you see electorate MPs as above (of greater status) than List MPs.. explain please.. with perhaps the National pov on this topic included..

        To all who may know: AsiaDownunder suggests ML’s Asian origin. If this is the case is she from Singapore or thereabouts..?

  11. notreallyalawyer 11

    Shearer has no obvious faults and a credible CV – that plus it’s one of the safest seats around would suggest that there should be no contest. Labour however have decided to make a big issue out of what should be a sideshow. Now Shearer actually has to do better than expected. Maybe he will but having raised the stakes there’s a potential risk.

    And Labour are very quiet about who their real foe is – Russ the Mus. Lee never had a chance but Labour like to keep the spotlight on her for a very obvious reason. I”d like to know what their internal polling says. They don’t really give any impression they’re doing well.

    • Tim Ellis 11.1

      Interesting points NRAL. The fact that Labour have spent the last ten days on a full frontal assault on Lee suggests that they do fear Lee as their main rival. Labour haven’t started on Mr Norman yet. Their strategy seems to be to try and ignore him completely and hope that he doesn’t emerge as a player.

      Mr Norman does appear to be getting far more press than Mr Shearer does. It doesn’t look like the Greens have much of a grassroots campaign though. They seem to be focussing just on a media war rather than getting their local campaign infrastructure up and running.

      I think it was George Darroch who pointed out a while ago that this was a major risk for the Norman campaign, I am paraphrasing him (probably unfairly) but I think the gist of what he was saying and my interpretation of it was that Norman would aim to capture as much media attention as he could without doing the grassroots stuff.

      • exbrethren 11.1.1

        Yes Tim. Labour have been running a full frontal assault on Lee by;

        a. making her make stupid comments re motorway and criminals
        b. making TV3 & Jesse Gurunathan make allegations about her ethics
        c. making her falter in an interview with Duncan Garner
        d. making her not answer Paul Henrys questions on Close Up
        e. making her say that students were drunks and not able to watch TV

        If you really believe that Labour are responsible for these things then I suggest you go and see a psychiatrist. If you don’t stop spinning and get back to your auditing, take a deep breath and come back when you have something sensible to add.

        Lee has been the architect of her own problems.

    • Eddie 11.2

      I heard Shearer this morning basically saying he wants the spotlight put back onto him and away from Lee’s daily fiascos.

      He’s had a pretty easy run so far, and if he’s going to get more air time he’ll need to lift his game. His waffly performance on the supercity on 3 news last night was dreadful.

      Though I don’t think Norman’s the best choice for the seat his campaign has been the best by far.

      • Pat 11.2.1

        “Shearer waffle” Garner called it. Shearer needs to make sure the label doesn’t stick.

    • mike 11.3

      “Shearer actually has to do better than expected”

      If his pathetic rambling to the students was anything to go by I very much doubt it NRL

  12. The Voice of Reason 12

    Cheers, Tim. I thought there might be one or two, but didn’t know where to look to find out.

    I’d be interested to know how many tried and failed to make the shift. I’m starting to think that the two kinds of MPs are very different animals; bureaucrat on the list, politician out on the street.

    It seems to me that Shearer is probably more list material than electorate, but he’ll have plenty of time to grow into the role. As many terms as he needs, I suspect.

    • Tim Ellis 12.1

      It seems to me that Shearer is probably more list material than electorate, but he’ll have plenty of time to grow into the role.

      Lots of List MPs have tried unsuccessfully in electorates, but they tend to get lumped in unwinnable contests (Margaret Wilson in Tauranga where she basically just had to fly the flag, Pansy Wong in Auckland Central when it was seen as unwinnable for National are good examples). There aren’t a lot of “career List MPs” though. Wilson was one example. Rajen Prasad is another for Labour. Michael Cullen became one. Many of the List MPs Labour has now are only List MPs because they lost electorate seats (Carol Beaumont, Steve Chadwick, Sue Moroney, Lynne Pillay, etc).

      Of the career List MPs, they do seem to need special qualities, in terms of either identity or specific talents. National has Hekia Parata and Georgina Te Heu Heu, Chris Finlayson and Tim Groser. Labour has David Parker, Maryan Street, Raymond Huo, etc. I’m not sure that Mr Shearer has any unique, special qualities though. He’s a middle aged white male who I suppose has one thing going for him by being very close to Mr Goff. At least Mr Parker has very strong legal credentials in a party with very few lawyers. Mr Shearer has international and development policy experience, but so does Mr Twyford.

      I’m not sure that Mr Shearer adds a whole lot to Labour’s caucus. He’s similar in that regard to Stephen Franks for National. A useful sort-of plodder with some good skills, but pretty redundant when you have somebody like Chris Finlayson who is always going to be the first call for attorney general.

      • Maynard J 12.1.1

        “I’m not sure that Mr Shearer has any unique, special qualities though. He’s a middle aged white male who I suppose has one thing going for him by being very close to Mr Goff. ”

        I’m not going to be subtle here, Tim: don’t be a ****. Whatever one step down on the ladder is from a low-blow, you’ve just struck it.

        • Pat 12.1.1.1

          I think you have read this the wrong way, Maynard.

          • Maynard J 12.1.1.1.1

            Happy to apologise if I have, but needlessly using the racial/age profile (I have not seen the left mentioning Lee as a half-way to middle age asian female) and then stating his only redeeming quality is in the company he keeps – what do you think I have missed?

            Is there nothing in this at all worthy of mention?

        • bilbo 12.1.1.2

          ZZZZZZZZ

          Can’t see why everyone is so excited by this.

          1. Shearer will win the seat easily.
          2. From what I have seen and read Shearer is the best candidate.
          3. It will make little difference to NZ (and probably Mt Albert residents), outside of the political hacks, who the MP is.

        • vto 12.1.1.3

          “”I’m not sure that Mr Shearer has any unique, special qualities though. He’s a middle aged white male ”

          What the fuck is it with people constantly bagging this sector of society these days? People go on and on about racism and bigotry and all that and then promptly go and display all sorts of bigotry themselves in relation to this group solely on the basis of their skin colour and race and age. Shallow ignorant bigots.

          It is seen in advertising. It is seen in blobs like this one. It is exhibited everywhere. It is EXACTLY the same as the naked racism that used to pervade our society not many decades ago.

          Makes my blood boil…

          Just like it used to / still does with others subjected to bigotry …

          p.s. I aint a middle aged white male.

          • Tim Ellis 12.1.1.3.1

            vto, I am a middle aged white male. I’m not saying this should bar me from a winnable position in a political party. I’m just saying that to be hand-picked for a high profile spot by the leader, I should have to display some special qualities, in terms of either diversity or background. Middle aged white males don’t win on diversity scores. Mr Shearer doesn’t get extra points on a background score, since in my view his background isn’t overwhelmingly better than Mr Twyford’s.

          • r0b 12.1.1.3.2

            vto, I am a middle aged white male. … Middle aged white males don’t win on diversity scores.

            There’s more to diversity than the colour of the skin of course. Country of birth, early experience, and life experience have a lot to do with it. Were you NZ by birth?

            Mr Shearer doesn’t get extra points on a background score, since in my view his background isn’t overwhelmingly better

            I think all Kiwis who have spent a long time overseas, and gained that experience, and choose to return to NZ to contribute, have something extra to offer. Even Key scores a point with me in that respect.

        • Tim Ellis 12.1.1.4

          It wasn’t intended as a low blow Maynard J. I’m just saying that Mr Shearer’s experience and background isn’t exceptional in the Labour Party, the same way that Mr Franks background isn’t exceptional in the National Party. I made the point that the only thing that put Mr Shearer in front of Mr Twyford, in my view, was his close friendship with Mr Goff.

          In the main I think that middle aged white males need some skills that are quite particular and unique to warrant being favoured by either political party in terms of new list selection or being handed a winnable seat as Mr Shearer was. I don’t believe he has those unique qualities. I don’t believe that being close to Mr Goff is a unique quality.

          • Maynard J 12.1.1.4.1

            Might want to be careful about how you frame things then. If you think Shearer has got nothing going you must think that the only things Lee has going for her is that she was born in East Asia and suffered a home invasion; such is your shallow first-order analysis.

        • exbrethren 12.1.1.5

          Maynard J,

          Tim is obviously right here. Obviously Shearer got has no special qualities that the UN could see.

          Compare that to the mighty-Lee who manages to oversee a media organisation that produces a whole programme a week and occasional Youtube ads and you can see how spot on Tims judgement is.

  13. gobsmacked 13

    Lee has not only been let down by her party, but by National’s cheerleaders in the media. Here’s a classic from Bill Ralston, Herald on Sunday, April 26 (before the parties had chosen their candidates):

    “National is likely to put up a relatively high-profile candidate in Melissa Lee.

    Mt Albert is a culturally diverse electorate and her ethnicity should not harm her. She is also a trained media professional, which should be of great advantage because byelections are almost presidential contests, with the candidates getting much more media exposure than they would normally get in a general election.” (italics added)

    They picked her for the ‘media exposure’. They can hardly complain that they then got it.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10568673

  14. Tim Ellis 14

    Eddie wrote:

    I heard Shearer this morning basically saying he wants the spotlight put back onto him and away from Lee’s daily fiascos.

    I suspect that is because he is sensing that voters in Mount Albert are blaming the Labour Party for the attacks on Lee and believe she’s being given an unfairly rough time. I sense that National felt the same resistance from New Zealand First supporters with the attacks on Mr Peters and a fear that there might be a backlash of sympathy that would push NZ First over the threshhold.

    I agree with you Eddie that Mr Norman’s media response has been pretty flawless. There’s nothing the media like better than a really open race. Mr Norman’s votes can only come from Mr Shearer, though. Are Labour worried that the treatment of Lee by Labour’s leadership might be turning Labour voters into the Green camp?

    • Maynard J 14.1

      “I suspect that is because he is sensing that voters in Mount Albert are blaming the Labour Party for the attacks on Lee and believe she’s being given an unfairly rough time.”

      You do Tim, but no one else that I have ever seen does. Remember all the anti-Lee media has been of her own doing. Can you give me one example of someone neutral in Mt Albert blaming Labour for media criticism of Lee (and no, you can not reference yourself)?

      What you suspect seems so far removed from reality I think you are just completely making things up now.

  15. Daveski 15

    I note that Lee has been cleared of misuse of funding claims which were presented here as undoubted corruption.

    Lee’s incompetence aside, it does put a different light on the attacks on Lee.

    I agree that this plays into the Greens’ hands although this should be a walk in the part for Labour.

    Ha ha … capture = her faulty

    • gobsmacked 15.1

      Daveski

      That is NZ on Air, not the Electoral Commission. The latter is the potential problem for National.

      • Daveski 15.1.1

        Good point gs although the comments made by NZOA refute some of the claims made by Lee’s opponents.

        Having said that, she is still a walking timebomb and I agree that the Nats seem to have misjudged her competence.

  16. notreallyalawyer 16

    “The fact that Labour have spent the last ten days on a full frontal assault on Lee suggests that they do fear Lee as their main rival.”

    possibly, if that’s the case then Labour’s polling must be looking very bad then. Which in this context would mean a reduced majority. Still get the seat but not a great look – epecially after all the fuss.

    Tend to think they’re trying to avoid dealing with Russ who has more coherent views on transportation – even though I disagree with those views.

    • gobsmacked 16.1

      “a full frontal assault on Lee”

      That’s just Tim-Spin. Close-Up was a week ago, Q & A was a week and a half ago, and they were all about Lee having a foot-feast while Shearer politely said nothing.

      Labour haven’t even got to Plan A. They haven’t had to.

    • The Voice of Reason 16.2

      Nah, it’s not really the case that “Labour have spent the last ten days on a full frontal assault on Lee”. That’s Tim Ellis’s quote and I’m pretty sure he doesn’t speak for the Labour Party. Remember, one of the oft repeated criticisms of Shearer is that he is too quiet. So what is it? Full frontal attack or grey man walking?

      Actually, there is no undue attack on Lee from Labour. They are showing her respect as the candidate most likely to come second, but really, Shearer doesn’t have to say a word from here on in and he’ll still bolt in. In fact, by saying bugger all, he has manged to appear to be the cleverest person in the race. Better to stay silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.

      • Tim Ellis 16.2.1

        VoR, I suspect Labour never expected that NZOA would report back so quickly on the allegations that Mr Goff and Mr Mallard made against Lee. They were found to be baseless.

        Mr Goff and Mr Mallard did not just ask questions. They made allegations of corruption and theft of public money, which were repeated by posters and commenters here at the Standard. That was a low, disgraceful attack on Ms Lee.

        • bilbo 16.2.1.1

          “Mr Goff and Mr Mallard did not just ask questions. They made allegations of corruption and theft of public money, which were repeated by posters and commenters here at the Standard. That was a low, disgraceful attack on Ms Lee.”

          Tim are you really that sanctimonious ?

          Politicians as a group enjoy and often utilise low disgraceful attacks the only parties that haven’t gone there that often are the Greens and Maori party although even those two parties have seen some notable exceptions.

        • gobsmacked 16.2.1.2

          Actually, Tim …

          A political promotion video was made. (true)

          It was not declared in election expenses. (do you know different?)

          NZ On Air have no jurisdiction in this matter. (true)

          Might be better to hold off on the indignation for a while.

        • The Voice of Reason 16.2.1.3

          Well, Tim, I don’t think she was accused of ‘theft’ of public funds, just flagrant misuse of the NZOnAir dosh. If NZOA are ok with it, fine. I don’t know the rules around that. If I ever want to make a pop video or doco, I’ll do some research.

          However, if the video was not declared as an election expense, then she may end up roasted far more successfully than Winnie was last year. Remember that? Winston Peters? Privileges Committee, allegations of misuse, blah blah blah. Where’s Rodders now that we need him, huh?

          It’s politics, Tim. It’s about perception, for the most part, but if Lee has actually cocked it up, she will be in for an even more uncomfortable time in parliament over the next few months than she is experiancing now on the streets of Mt Albert.

          • Tim Ellis 16.2.1.3.1

            VoR:

            You might want to read the NZOA report:

            Conclusion 1:
            NZ On Air is satisfied that Ms Lee did not use the Asia Downunder series for political purposes in the run-up to the General Election, and that the systems put in place to manage conflicts of interest and editorial independence were robust and managed well by TVNZ and the Overseeing Producer.

            Conclusion 2:
            NZ On Air was not deceived or misled at any stage about Ms Lee’s Parliamentary candidacy.

            Conclusion 3:
            NZ On Air is satisfied that public funds intended for production of Asia Downunder were not used to make a campaign video.

            There is some discussion in the NZOA report that “The video is 3m02s and appears fairly quickly compiled with modest production values.

            In short, it was a youtube video.

            If there is a political expense that should have been attributed, that is an expense that should have been declared by the National Party’s finance agent, not Ms Lee. Lee had no responsibility for the return of electoral expenses, just as none of Labour’s MPs have responsibility for Labour’s return. Voluntary time isn’t attributable as an election expense. Materials are. It doesn’t appear that any material costs needed to be attributed.

            Labour can continue to try and flog this element, but there seems to be enough mud on their faces from making these allegations against Lee that I don’t doubt that the further attacks around election expense returns won’t fly either.

          • Duncan 16.2.1.3.2

            Where did Labour make allegations against Lee? I saw them ask questions arising from the TV3 piece and poke a bit of fun at Lee’s expense but where have they accused her of anything?

          • Tim Ellis 16.2.1.3.3

            Duncan, I suggest you have a look at DPF’s blog which includes the allegations made by Mr Mallard and Mr Goff under parliamentary privilege. Mr Mallard made allegations at Red Alert. Young Labour have been chanting: “Corruption!” and “Pay it Back” at meet the candidate meetings. Writers and commenters here at the Standard have squealed “Corruption!”.

            Labour certainly backed off on the claims over the last week because they knew they couldn’t back them up, and it appears at Red Alert that they even deleted some of the comments made by Labour activists that were defamatory, but let’s not pretend that the allegations weren’t made.

    • Pascal's bookie 16.3

      notreallyalawyer :

      I think everyone is expecting a reduced majority, look at the list votes nat v lab, and you’ll see that Helen’s super majority had a lot of Nat voters in it. There is no reason for Shearer to expect that loyalty. Nice attempt at managing expectations though!

      If Lee can’t get at least the nat list vote I’d say she should be disappointed, given the govt’s poll numbers.

  17. Irascible 17

    Regardless of NZOA’s decision that Lee did not misuse public funds to support NACT the question about her ethics and her inability to keep her political demands out of her business, funded as it is from mainly public monies, remains as a huge question over her and her Party Leader.
    Any candidate with such huge issues of unethical and debateable behavoiiur must be questioned.

    • Tim Ellis 17.1

      Keep flogging it Irascible. Mr Mallard and Mr Goff made claims of theft and corruption and said that Ms Lee should be stood aside pending an inquiry. The inquiry was conducted and exonerated her completely.

      There aren’t “huge issues of unethical and debateable behaviour”, except your own unethical and debateable behaviour in continuing to try and milk allegations that have been investigated and proven to be untrue.

      • Irascible 17.1.1

        Timmy, You remind me of the Captain of a Lewis Carrol poem who, despite having an absolutely blank map, on being asked where they were declared “Never mind if I haven’t been strictly accurate if I state it three times it must be true.”
        In this exchange over NACT credibility and Lee’s inability to be articulate the public perception of Lee and her leader are now the issue. The staffer at Lee’s company who raised the issue with TV3 provided a legitimate issue questioning the financial and ethical management of Lee’s company as well as its intimate relationship with NACT thus allowing others to follow up with legitimate questions – not allegations ( a word you are keen to bandy around ). These questions have received answers of sorts but still leave your candidate and leader exposed as having behaved in a questionable manner.

  18. Ron 18

    Duncan – of course they didn’t make any. And that’s mthe difference with this government. If she’d been a Labour candidate in the last government the TV, paper and talk back hacks wiuld have been all over it for weeks – proof or no proof.

    National relied on the fourth estate to “do their jobs” last time but it seems the current opposition will be on their own.

    • Daveski 18.1

      Ron slight flaw in your argument given that these were trumped up by TV3 and ramped up by Labour themselves. Agreed, it’s not about facts, it’s all about perception.

  19. exbrethren 19

    Poor Melissa Lee. A victim of a vicious strategy by Steven Joyce and the old white racist male wing of the National Party.

    These types are so unhappy with Key bringing in candidates of other demographics that they decided to hang one out to dry and chose Lee.

    She has been the victim of undermining by Joyce over the Waterview route. She has been badly briefed and left to struggle with journalists by her media ‘minders’. What a nasty bunch these guys are.

    My evidence? Well I’m using the Tim Ellis standard of I state it so its fact.

  20. burt 20

    Eddie

    The word corruption has been thrown around a few times and now I would like to know your position on Lee. Do you think the NZ On Air report is worthless and if so what would you suggest happens next.

    Otherwise I think it might be appropriate to apologise, see if you can beat Mallard to it. You might want to hurry though because Mallard is already contemplating it.

    • lprent 20.1

      burt: As the kurffle over NZF last year demonstrated. The issue isn’t with what people actually do, it is with the perception of corruption that is important. There was certainly a question in this case about the use or misuse of public money. NZ On Air had to look at the paperwork before they could say one way or another.

      Incidentally I haven’t seen your public apology to Winston yet. After all he and NZF were cleared of everything except lousy book keeping. Perhaps you should do that first before saying what others should do. Otherwise a word beginning with H comes to mind.

  21. burt 21

    After all he and NZF were cleared of everything except lousy book keeping

    I’m going to book mark this. Unbelievable – You are still defending Winston !

    If it were not for the statute of limitations being so short he would have been standing in court for filing false returns… actually scrub that – he was part of the Labour-led govt so there was no way he was ever going to stand in court.

    • lprent 21.1

      It is unlikely. You’d have to prove intent, and it looked to me like they simply had a chaotic book-keeping system.

      There were ample opportunities for the SFO to try for some kind of fraud charge that didn’t have the 2 year limit that the electoral commission had. They investigated and decided there was nothing to answer because they couldn’t find evidence of intent to defraud or corruption. It is a bad look – the same as Melissa Lee had.

      burt: I’m NOT part of lynch mobs and definitely don’t take advice from idiots like you that like to play “follow the pack”. The mindless following the people with the loudest voice….

      How about growing up into an individual rather than making snap judgments based on the way other people are running…

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Pharmac Director, Climate Change Commissioner, Health NZ Directors – The latest to quit this m...
    Summary:As New Zealand loses at least 12 leaders in the public service space of health, climate, and pharmaceuticals, this month alone, directly in response to the Government’s policies and budget choices, what lies ahead may be darker than it appears. Tui examines some of those departures and draws a long ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    42 mins ago
  • Flooding Housing Policy
    The Minister of Housing’s ambition is to reduce markedly the ratio of house prices to household incomes. If his strategy works it would transform the housing market, dramatically changing the prospects of housing as an investment.Leaving aside the Minister’s metaphor of ‘flooding the market’ I do not see how the ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 hour ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted (Again!)
    As previously noted, my historical fantasy piece, set in the fifth-century Mediterranean, was accepted for a Pirate Horror anthology, only for the anthology to later fall through. But in a good bit of news, it turned out that the story could indeed be re-marketed as sword and sorcery. As of ...
    4 hours ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Friday, July 19
    An employee of tobacco company Philip Morris International demonstrates a heated tobacco device. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Friday, July 19 are:At a time when the Coalition Government is cutting spending on health, infrastructure, education, housing ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 hours ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Friday, July 19
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 8:30 am on Friday, July 19 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister Casey Costello orders 50% cut to excise tax on heated tobacco products. The minister has ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    10 hours ago
  • Weekly Roundup 19-July-2024
    Kia ora, it’s time for another Friday roundup, in which we pull together some of the links and stories that caught our eye this week. Feel free to add more in the comments! Our header image this week shows a foggy day in Auckland town, captured by Patrick Reynolds. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    10 hours ago
  • Weekly Climate Wrap: A market-led plan for failure
    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items climate news for Aotearoa this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer. A discussion recorded yesterday is in the video above and the audio of that sent onto the podcast feed.The Government released its draft Emissions Reduction ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    11 hours ago
  • Tobacco First
    Save some money, get rich and old, bring it back to Tobacco Road.Bring that dynamite and a crane, blow it up, start all over again.Roll up. Roll up. Or tailor made, if you prefer...Whether you’re selling ciggies, digging for gold, catching dolphins in your nets, or encouraging folks to flutter ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    11 hours ago
  • Trump’s Adopted Son.
    Waiting In The Wings: For truly, if Trump is America’s un-assassinated Caesar, then J.D. Vance is America’s Octavian, the Republic’s youthful undertaker – and its first Emperor.DONALD TRUMP’S SELECTION of James D. Vance as his running-mate bodes ill for the American republic. A fervent supporter of Viktor Orban, the “illiberal” prime ...
    12 hours ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Friday, July 19
    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Friday, July 19, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:The PSA announced the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) had ruled in the PSA’s favour in its case against the Ministry ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    13 hours ago
  • The Hoon around the week to July 19
    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers last night features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s release of its first Emissions Reduction Plan;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor and special guest Dr Karin von ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    13 hours ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #29 2024
    Open access notables Improving global temperature datasets to better account for non-uniform warming, Calvert, Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society: To better account for spatial non-uniform trends in warming, a new GITD [global instrumental temperature dataset] was created that used maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) to combine the land surface ...
    23 hours ago
  • We're back again! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Gabriel Crismariu on UnsplashWe’re back again after our mid-winter break. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • Gut Reactions.
    Trump Writes His Own Story: Would the “mainstream” media even try to reflect the horrified reaction of the MAGA crowd to the pop-pop-pop of the would-be assassin’s rifle, and Trump going down? Could it even grasp the sheer elation of the rally-goers seeing their champion rise up and punch the air, still alive, ...
    1 day ago
  • Dodging Bullets.
    Fight! Fight! Fight! Had the assassin’s bullet found its mark and killed Donald Trump, America’s descent into widespread and murderous violence – possibly spiralling-down into civil war – would have been immediate and quite possibly irreparable. The American Republic, upon whose survival liberty and democracy continue to depend, is certainly not ...
    1 day ago
  • 'Corruption First' Strikes Again
    There comes a point in all our lives when we must stop to say, “Enough is enough. We know what’s happening. We are not as stupid or as ignorant as you believe us to be. And making policies that kill or harm our people is not acceptable, Ministers.”Plausible deniability has ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Thursday, July 18
    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:The inside stories of KiwiRail’s iRex debacle, Westport’s perma-delayed flood scheme and Christchurch’s post-quake sewer rebuild, which assumed no population growth, show just how deeply sceptical senior officials in Treasury, the Ministry of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • What's that Jack Black?
    Ah-rah, deeSoo-guh-goo-gee-goo-geeGoo-guh fli-goo gee-gooGuh fli-goo, ga-goo-buh-deeOoh, guh-goo-beeOoh-guh-guh-bee-guh-guh-beeFli-goo gee-gooA-fliguh woo-wa mama Lucifer!I’m about ready to move on, how about you?Not from the shooting, that’s bad and we definitely shouldn’t have that. But the rehabilitation of Donald J Trump? The deification of Saint Donald? As the Great Unifier?Gimme a bucket.https://yellowscene.com/2024/04/07/trump-as-jesus/Just to re-iterate, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 day ago
  • June 2024: Earth’s 13th-consecutive warmest month on record
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Jeff Masters and Bob Henson June 2024 was Earth’s warmest June since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was the planet’s 13th consecutive warmest month on record, NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, or NCEI, reported July 12. As opposed to being focused in ...
    1 day ago
  • Connecting the dots and filling the gaps in our bike network
    This is a guest post by Shaun Baker on the importance of filling the gaps in our cycling networks. It originally appeared on his blog Multimodal Adventures, and is re-posted here with kind permission. In our towns and cities in Aotearoa New Zealand, there are areas in our cycling networks ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 day ago
  • Webworm Down Under Photos!
    Hi,I wanted to share a few thoughts and photos from the Webworm popup and Tickled screening we held in Auckland, New Zealand last weekend.In short — it was a blast. I mean, I had a blast and I hope any of you that came also had a blast.An old friend ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 18
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:30 am on Thursday, July 18 are:News: Christchurch's sewer systems block further housing developments RNZ’s Niva ChittockAnalysis: Interislander: Treasury, MoT officials' mistrust of KiwiRail led ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 18
    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Thursday, July 18, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Verbatim: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts held a news conference in Auckland to release the Government’s Emissions Reduction Plan, including ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The politics of managed retreat
    Climate change deniers are now challenging the Government over a key climate change adaptation policy. That begs the question of whether New Zealand First will then support Government moves to implement processes to deal with a managed retreat for properties in danger of flooding because of sea level rise and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • Some changes are coming
    Warm welcome again to those who are here. The Mountain Tui substack was officially started on the 2nd of July. I wrote about what led me here on this post. Since then, it’s been a learning to navigate the platform, get to meet those in the community, and basically be ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • About fucking time
    The US Supreme Court has been rogue for years, with openly corrupt judges making the law up as they go to suit themselves, their billionaire buyers, and the Republican Party. But now, in the wake of them granting a licence for tyranny, President Biden is actually going to try and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: False accounting and wishful thinking
    National released their draft 2026-2030 Emissions Reduction Plan today. The plan is required under the Zero Carbon Act, and must set out policies and strategies to meet the relevant emissions budget. Having cancelled all Labour's actually effective climate change policies and crashed the carbon price, National was always going to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • The Enemies Of Sunshine And Space.
    Our Houses? The Urban Density debate is a horrible combination of intergenerational avarice and envy, fuelled by the grim certainty that none of the generations coming up after them will ever have it as good as the Boomers. To say that this situation rankles among those born after 1965 is to ...
    2 days ago
  • Still the 5 Eyes Achilles Heel?
    The National Cyber Security Centre (NZSC), a unit in the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) dedicated to cyber-security, has released a Review of its response to the 2021 email hacking of NZ members of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 days ago
  • Britain's Devastating Electoral Slip.
    Slip-Sliding Away: Labour may now enjoy a dominant position in Britain’s political landscape, but only by virtue of not being swallowed by it.THE BRITISH LABOUR PARTY’S “landslide victory” is nothing of the sort. As most people understand the term, a landslide election victory is one in which the incumbent government, or ...
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why right wingers think all governments (including their own) are incompetent
    Since open denial of climate change is no longer a viable political option, denial now comes in disguise. The release this week of the coalition government’s ‘draft emissions reductions plan” shows that the Luxon government is refusing to see the need to cut emissions at source. Instead, it proposes to ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Wednesday, July 17
    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy this morning are:Chris Penk is set to roll back building standards for insulation that had only just been put in place, and which had been estimated to save 40% from power costs, after builders ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Open Letter to Pharmac
    All this talk of getting oldIt's getting me down, my loveLike a cat in a bag, waiting to drownThis time I'm coming downAnd I hope you're thinking of meAs you lay down on your sideNow the drugs don't workThey just make you worse but I know I'll see your face ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • A blanket of misinformation
    Two old sayings have been on my mind lately. The first is: “The pen is mightier than the sword”, describing the power of language and communication to help or to harm. The other, which captures the speed with which falsehoods can become ingrained and hard to undo, is: “A lie can ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 17
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 7:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 are:Scoop: Government considers rolling back home insulation standards RNZ’s Eloise GibsonNews: Government plans tree-planting frenzy as report shows NZ no longer ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 17
    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 , the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day were:Simon Watts released the Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP), which included proposed changes to the Emissions Trading Scheme ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • “Shhhh” – National's 3 Waters is loaded with higher costs and lays a path to ...
    This is a long, possibly technical, but very, very important read. I encourage you to take the time and spread your awareness.IntroductionIn 2022, then Labour Party Prime Minister Jacinda Adern expended significant political capital to protect New Zealand’s water assets from privatisation. She lost that battle, and Labour and the ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Plugging a video channel: Dr Gilbz
    Dr. Ella Gilbert is a climate scientist and presenter with a PhD in Antarctic climate change, working at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Her background is in atmospheric sciences and she's especially interested in the physical mechanisms of climate change, clouds, and almost anything polar. She is passionate about communicating climate ...
    3 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” again
    Back in 2022, in its Open Government Partnership National Action Plan, the government promised to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation. Since then they've run a secret "consultation" on how to do that, with their preferred outcome being that agencies will consult the Ministry of Justice ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Crashing New Zealand's health system is not the way to prosperity, Prime Minister
    Another day, and yet another piece of bad news for New Zealand’s health system. Reports have come out that General Practitioners (GP) may have to close doors, or increase patient fees to survive. The so-called ‘capitation’ funding review, which supports GP practices to survive, is under way, and primary care ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Closer Than You Think: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.
    Redefining Our Terms: “When an angry majority is demanding change, defending the status-quo is an extremist position.”“WHAT’S THIS?”, asked Laurie, eyeing suspiciously the two glasses of red wine deposited in front of him.“A nice drop of red. I thought you’d be keen to celebrate the French Far-Right’s victory with the ...
    3 days ago
  • Come on Darleen.
    Good morning all, time for a return to things domestic. After elections in the UK and France, Luxon gatecrashing Nato, and the attempted shooting of Trump, it’s probably about time we re-focus on local politics.Unless of course you’re Christopher Luxon and you’re so exhausted from all your schmoozing in Washington ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • How the Northwest was lost and may be won
    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16
    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16
    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother
    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?
    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    4 days ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)
    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    4 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.
    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Law & Order: National Party 1, Police 0, Public -1
    What happened?Media is reporting that police have lost in their pay dispute with the Coalition Government.Some of you might remember that the police rejected Labour’s previous offer in September, 2023, possibly looking forward to be taken care of by the self-touted ‘Party of Law and Order’ - National.If you look ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the Trump shooting and a potential hike in fees for visiting the doctor
    Having watched Donald Trump systematically exploit social grievances, urge people not to accept his election loss and incite his followers to violent insurrection… it is a bit hard to swallow the media descriptions over the past 24 hours of Trump being a “victim” of violence. More like a case of ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Monday July 15
    The exploitation of workers on the national fibre broadband rollout highlights once again the dark underbelly of our ‘churn and burn’ economy. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:An extraordinary Steve Kilgallon investigation into ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 15
    Photo by Jessica Loaiza on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last three days to 9:00 am on Monday, July 15 are:Investigation: Immigration NZ refused to prosecute an alleged exploiter despite a mountain of evidence - ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • City Centre Rebuild: How Soon Is Now?
    Patrick Reynolds is deputy chair of the City Centre Advisory Panel and a director of Greater Auckland There is ongoing angst about construction disruption in the city centre. And fair enough: it’s very tough, CRL and other construction has been going on for a very long time. Like the pandemic, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Patrick Reynolds
    4 days ago
  • Peril, dismay, resolution
    This afternoon we rolled into Budapest to bring to a close our ride across Europe. We did 144 km yesterday, severe heat messages coming in from the weather app as we bounced along unformed Hungarian back roads and a road strip strewn with fallen trees from an overnight tornado. Somewhere ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • Bullet the Blue Sky
    In the locust windComes a rattle and humJacob wrestled the angelAnd the angel was overcomeYou plant a demon seedYou raise a flower of fireWe see them burnin' crossesSee the flames, higher and higherBullet the blue skyBullet the blue skyThe indelible images, the soundtrack of America. Guns, assassinations, where-were-you-when moments attached ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 15
    TL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the three days to 6:00 am on Monday, July 23 are:University of Auckland researcher Ryan Greenaway-McGrevy published an analysis of the impact of Auckland's 2016 zoning reforms.BNZ's latest Performance ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s diary for the week to July 23 and beyond
    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to July 23 include:PM Christopher Luxon has returned from a trip to the United States and may hold a post-Cabinet news conference at 4:00 pm today.The BusinessNZ-BNZ PSI survey results for June will be released this ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Was The Assassination Attempt Fake?
    Hi,It’s in incredible photo, and we’re going to be talking about it for a long time:Trump, triumphantly raising his hand in the air after being shot. Photo credit: Evan VucciYou can watch what happened on YouTube in real time, as a 20-year-old from Pennsylvania lets off a series of gunshots ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • 40 years ago, inside the crisis that made modern NZ
    It had rained all day in Auckland, and the Metro Theatre in Mangere was steamed up inside as more and more people arrived to celebrate what had once seemed impossible. Sir Robert Muldoon had lost the 1984 election. “Piggy” Muldoon was no more. Such was the desire to get rid ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #28
    A listing of 34 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 7, 2024 thru Sat, July 13, 2024. Story of the week It's still early summer in the Northern Hemisphere. The season comes as our first year of 1.5°C warming ...
    5 days ago
  • Unsurprising, but Trump shooting creates opportunity for a surprising response
    I can’t say I’m shocked. As the US news networks offer rolling coverage dissecting the detail of today’s shooting at a Donald Trump rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, and we hear eye-witnesses trying to make sense of their trauma, the most common word being used is shock. And shocking it is. ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    5 days ago
  • Escalation in the States as Trump is shot and his allies capitalize on the moment
    Snapshot summary of the shooting in the States belowAnd a time to remember what Abraham Lincoln once said of the United States of America:We find ourselves in the peaceful possession of the fairest portion of the earth, as regards extent of territory, fertility of soil, and salubrity of climate. We ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Bernie Sanders: Joe Biden for President
    I will do all that I can to see that President Biden is re-elected. Why? Despite my disagreements with him on particular issues, he has been the most effective president in the modern history of our country and is the strongest candidate to defeat Donald Trump — a demagogue and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Questions from God
    Have you invited God into your online life? Do you have answers for his questions? Did I just assume God’s pronouns?Before this goes any further, or gets too blasphemous, a word of explanation. When I say “God”, I don’t meant your god(s), if you have one/them. The God I speak ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • The politics of money and influence
    Did you know: Four days ago, the CEO of Warner Bros Discovery (WBD), David Zaslav, opined that he didn’t really care who won the US Presidential election, so long as they were M&A and business friendly. Please share my Substack so I can continue my work. Thank you and happy ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Auckland & Transport Minister Simeon Brown's insanity
    Excuse me, but I just don’t feel like being polite today. What is going on with Simeon Brown? I mean, really? After spending valuable Ministerial time, focus, and government resources to overturn tailored speed limits in school and high fatality zones that *checks notes* reduces the risk of deaths and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • Were scientists caught falsifying data in the hacked emails incident dubbed 'climategate'?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Were scientists caught falsifying data in the ...
    6 days ago
  • What Happened to David D'Amato's Millions?
    Today’s podcast episode is for paying Webworm members — and is a conversation seven years in the making. Let me explain.Hi,As I hit “send” on this newsletter, I’m about to play my 2016 documentary Tickled to a theatre full of about 400 Webworm readers in Auckland, New Zealand.And with Tickled ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Voting as a multi-order process of choice.
    Recent elections around the world got me to thinking about voting. At a broad level, voting involves processes and choices. Embedded in both are the logics that go into “sincere” versus “tactical” voting. “Sincere” voting is usually a matter of preferred … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Women in Space.
    Count downThree twoI wonderIf I'll ever see you againI'm 'bout to take offI'm leaving youBut maybeI'll see you around somewhere some placeI just need some spaceA brief reminder that if you’re a Gold Card holder you can subscribe to Nick’s Kōrero for 20% off. You’re also welcome to use this ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 13
    Auckland waterfront, July. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 13 are:The National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government watered down vehicle emissions standards this week, compounding the climate emissions damage from an increasingly ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Dems need to ask the right question about Biden as his age now defines the campaign
    Midway through the news conference that many American political commentators had built up as critical to Joe Biden’s re-election chances, the US president said European leaders are not asking him not to run for a second term, “they’re saying you gotta win”.The problem for Biden and his advisors is that ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • Govt flounders while ocean temps soar
    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items of climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer, most of which they discussin the video above. According to experts, the rate of ocean surface warming around New Zealand is “outstripping the global ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago

  • New infrastructure energises BOP forestry towns
    New developments in the heart of North Island forestry country will reinvigorate their communities and boost economic development, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones visited Kaingaroa and Kawerau in Bay of Plenty today to open a landmark community centre in the former and a new connecting road in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • 'Pacific Futures'
    President Adeang, fellow Ministers, honourable Diet Member Horii, Ambassadors, distinguished guests.    Minasama, konnichiwa, and good afternoon, everyone.    Distinguished guests, it’s a pleasure to be here with you today to talk about New Zealand’s foreign policy reset, the reasons for it, the values that underpin it, and how it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Delivering 24 hour pothole repairs
    Kiwis and freight operators will benefit from the Coalition Government delivering on its commitment to introduce targets that will ensure a greater number of potholes on our state highways are identified and fixed within 24 hours, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Increasing productivity to help rebuild our economy is a key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Peer Support Specialists rolled out in hospitals
    Five hospitals have been selected to trial a new mental health and addiction peer support service in their emergency departments as part of the Government’s commitment to increase access to mental health and addiction support for New Zealanders, says Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Peer Support Specialists in EDs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan
    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset
    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • School attendance continues to increase
    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news of progress being made by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) on the first of several crucial resilience projects underway on the South Island’s West Coast.“State highways across the West Coast are critical lifelines for communities throughout the region, including for freight and tourism. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Migrant school leavers to get part-time work rights
    The coalition Government is providing migrant school leavers with greater opportunities, by increasing access to part-time work rights for those awaiting the outcome of a family residence application, Immigration Minister Erica Stanford has announced.  “Many young people who are part of a family residence application process are unable to work. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding to support use of NZ Sign Language
    Seven projects have received government funding totalling nearly $250,000 to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). Initiatives that received an NZSL Board Community Grants this year include camps that support the use of NZSL through physical and sensory activities, and clubs where Deaf people and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Inflation data shows progress in economic recovery
    Today’s Consumer Price Index data which has inflation at 3.3 per cent for the year to July 2024, shows we are turning our economy around and winning the fight against rampant inflation, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “While today’s data will be welcome news for Kiwis, I know many New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki
    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will hold a series of nationwide summits to discuss regional priorities, aspirations and opportunities, with the first kicking off in Nelson on August 12. The 15 summits will facilitate conversations about progressing regional economic growth and opportunities to drive productivity, prosperity and resilience through the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston
    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety
    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship
    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality
    The Government is moving forward with recommendations from the Tourism Data Leadership Group, beginning with establishing a Tourism Data Partnership Fund says Tourism and Hospitality Minister Matt Doocey. “The Tourism Data Partnership Fund is funded through the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) and will provide up to $400,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • 4000 more job seekers to get case managers
    A new over-the-phone employment case management service will see thousands more job seekers under the age of 25 supported to find work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston has announced. “MSD case managers provide valuable support to help people into work, but less than a third of those receiving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy
    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants
    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • District Court judges appointed
    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins
    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended
    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government provides support to tackle tax debt and compliance
    New compliance funding in Budget 2024 will ensure Inland Revenue is better equipped to catch individuals who are evading their tax obligations, Revenue Minister Simon Watts says. “New Zealand’s tax debt had risen to almost $7.4 billion by the end of May, an increase of more than 50 per cent since 2022. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Taking action to reduce road cones
    The Coalition Government is taking action to reduce expenditure on road cones and temporary traffic management (TTM) while maintaining the safety of workers and road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  Rolling out a new risk-based approach to TTM that will reduce the number of road cones on our roads.  ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Celebrating 100 years of progress
    Te Arawa Lakes Trust centenary celebrations mark a significant milestone for all the important work done for the lakes, the iwi and for the Bay of Plenty region, says Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka. The minister spoke at a commemorative event acknowledging 100 years ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Foreign Minister to travel to Korea and Japan
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to the Republic of Korea and Japan next week.    “New Zealand enjoys warm and enduring relationships with both Korea and Japan. Our relationships with these crucial partners is important for New Zealand’s ongoing prosperity and security,” says Mr Peters.    While in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government creates MAG for retail crime victims
    The coalition Government is establishing a Ministerial Advisory Group for the victims of retail crime, as part of its plan to restore law and order, Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee says.  “New Zealand has seen an exponential growth in retail crime over the past five ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Huge opportunity for educators and students as charter school applications open
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says today is another important step towards establishing charter schools, with the application process officially opening.  “There has already been significant interest from groups and individuals interested in opening new charter schools or converting existing state schools to charter schools,” says Mr Seymour. “There is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Decreasing gas reserves data highlights need to reverse oil and gas exploration ban
    MBIE’s annual Petroleum Reserves report detailing a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural gas reserves shows the need to reverse the oil and gas exploration ban, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says.“Figures released by MBIE show that there has been a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Providers of military assistance to Russia targeted in new sanctions
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further sanctions as part of the Government’s ongoing response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.    “Russia’s continued illegal war of aggression against Ukraine is a direct and shocking assault on the rules-based order. Our latest round of sanctions targets Russians involved in that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • OECD report shows New Zealand is a red tape state
    Minister for Regulation David Seymour says that the OECD Product Market Regulation Indicators (PMRI) released this morning shows why New Zealanders sorely need regulatory reform. “This shocker result should end any and all doubt that the Government must go to war on red tape and regulation,” says Mr Seymour.  “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government unveils five-point climate strategy
    The coalition Government is proud to announce the launch of its Climate Strategy, a comprehensive and ambitious plan aimed at reducing the impacts of climate change and preparing for its future effects, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “The Strategy is built on five core pillars and underscores the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • National Bowel Screening Programme reaches 2 million life-saving screening kits
    The National Bowel Screening Programme has reached a significant milestone, with two million home bowel screening kits distributed across the country, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti announced today.   “This programme, which began in 2017, has detected 2,495 cancers as of June 2024. A third of these were at an early ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Granny flats popular with all ages
    More than 1,300 people have submitted on the recent proposal to make it easier to build granny flats, RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop and Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk say. “The strong response shows how popular the proposal is and how hungry the public is for common sense changes to make ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $25 million boost for conservation
    Toitū te taiao – our environment endures!  New Zealanders will get to enjoy more of our country’s natural beauty including at Cathedral Cove – Mautohe thanks to a $25 million boost for conservation, Conservation Minister Tama Potaka announced today.  “Te taiao (our environment) is critical for the country’s present and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand increases support for Ukraine
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced a further $16 million of support for Ukraine, as it defends itself against Russia’s illegal invasion. The announcement of further support for Ukraine comes as Prime Minister Luxon attends the NATO Leaders’ Summit in Washington DC. “New Zealand will provide an additional ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago

Page generated in The Standard by Wordpress at 2024-07-19T06:40:57+00:00