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Symbol or substance?

Written By: - Date published: 9:11 am, July 7th, 2009 - 27 comments
Categories: economy, maori party, national - Tags:

It seems to me that National has fundamentally misunderstood what the foreshore and seabed debate is about.

Key’s statements yesterday suggest it is about a mere symbolical recognition of an iwi’s traditional ties to sections of foreshore and seabed. It’s not. He seems to think it’s about beaches. It’s not. He seems to equate mana with nothing more than respect. It’s not.

In the past, National intentionally confused the issue by raising fears of access to the beaches to fuel racism but it’s nothing to do with the beaches. The foreshore is the inter-tidal zone. The seabed is the ground beneath the sea out to the edge of the continental shelf. 

The customary rights that Maori want recognised are not just feel good symbols. They are property rights – the ability to use that land without needing to seek permission from someone else. In fact, the Ngati Apa case was based on the iwi asserting it had the right to conduct aquaculture using the seabed without needing to get permission from the local council based on its rights to that seabed which pre-dated the imposition of English law. 

Mana is not just about being respected, it is also about having the power to do things. In this case, mana over foreshore and seabed means, in part, the power to use that land for economic activities as their ancestors did.

If Key is relaxed because he thinks Maori are asking for nothing substantial, he is in for a surprise. The Maori Party was not created because of a dispute over empty symbols. This is about iwi having their economic rights over the land of the foreshore and seabed recognised, giving them the power to use that land for economic purposes.  The Maori Party will not be satisfied with less.

These two different understandings of what is at stake must come into conflict at some point.

27 comments on “Symbol or substance?”

  1. ieuan 1

    I think ‘conflict’ is the right word because there are all those other New Zealanders, you know the one’s without 1/16th Maori blood, that get a little upset when a minority gets rights and compensation that the majority end up having to pay for it.

    This is a huge can of worms and good luck to ‘National’ the the ‘Maori Party’ in finding a way to make this all work without a major backlash from a large percentage of the population.

  2. ak 2

    Spot on Eddie: the old shelve-and-fudge, forked and slippery tongue won’t work on this one. Let them eat mana, indeed.

    I see that both fee simple and compensation are “off the table” already for the Keyster – directly contradictory to initial comments from Hone and Tariana.

    Compare the press treatment of this with the disgusting cheerleading given to Orewa One. And weep.

    • snoozer 2.1

      And then you have Pita Sharples on the radio this morning saying the Maori Party doesn’t want compensation. Hard to know what they stand for from one day to the next.

  3. Maggie 3

    When Sharples made soothing words on National Radio this morning, I would have expected Sean Plunket to hone in on the obvious conflict between what Sharples was saying and what his co-leader had said the day before. Not a dicky bird.

    Tariana is clearly confused. As this statement shows one second she is saying the S & F issue isn’t about money and compensation, the next she seems to be saying that it is…..

    http://www.tetaihauauru.maori.nz/index.php?pag=nw&id=108&p=this-has-never-been-about-money-says-maori-party-coleader-tariana-turia.html

  4. toad 4

    Eddie said:

    …the ability to use that land without needing to seek permission from someone else. In fact, the Ngati Apa case was based on the iwi asserting it had the right to conduct aquaculture using the seabed without needing to get permission from the local council based on its rights to that seabed which pre-dated the imposition of English law.

    While I agree with the focus of your post on Key’s repsonse, I don’t think the bit of it I’ve quoted above is strictly correct Eddie.

    In the Ngati Apa case, Ngati Apa acknowledged that they needed a licence from the Marlborough District Council to farm mussel on the seabed. It was the Council declining to issue the licence upon Ngati Apa’s application that led to the litigation and the finding of the Court of Appeal that Ngati Apa had the right to apply to the Maori Land Court to determine whether they had customary title to the seabed and foreshore within their rohe. It was that right that was extinguished by the Foreshore and Seabed Act.

    Even though Key might not fully understand its implications, I think he is doing the fair and just thing in readressing this issue – the FSA was the legislative low point of the last Labour Government, and I think even Labour is now starting to acknowledge that.

    The scary bit is Winston Peters crawling out from wherever he’s been for the last seven months and trying to stir up the racist underbelly of New Zealand society for his own political ends.

    Maggie – the Ministerial Review report clearly proposes that compensation is on the agenda:

    • The principle of compensation
    Where private property rights, of any kind, are extinguished in the foreshore and seabed, such extinguishment should in principle be compensated.

    • gobsmacked 4.1

      Toad
      :
      the finding of the Court of Appeal that Ngati Apa had the right to apply to the Maori Land Court to determine whether they had customary title to the seabed and foreshore within their rohe. It was that right that was extinguished by the Foreshore and Seabed Act.

      Yes, the strongest argument against the Act (with resonance across the political spectrum, Maori and non-Maori) was the right to a “day in court”.

      Therefore, the government should just repeal the Act, and let the courts decide. But are they willing to do that? So far, the signs are unclear.

      If Maori (iwi, etc) do not get their “day in court”, and no greater customary rights – maybe even less – than Cullen’s law gave them, what exactly is the point of repealing the Act? Or indeed, the point of the Maori Party?

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1

        I suppose what their customary rights are in regards to the foreshore and seabed are what the courts would determine. It’s certainly hard to say that they should get greater customary rights considering that customary rights are based on what they did before the coming of the signing of Te Tiriti O Waitangi. From what I can make out, that included gathering shellfish by hand from their natural habitat and fishing using hand lines. It didn’t include large scale mussel farms (man made habitat) etc or trawlers.

        What the MP is asking for is to have a different set of rules based upon race and that is racism.

        • Anthony Karinski 4.1.1.1

          So if your family has held a piece of land for say 200 years you shouldn’t be allowed to build a high rise, sealed road or mine it for titanium because these were not options when it originally got into your hands?

          • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.1.1

            There is a question of if they actually held the seabed and foreshore which is doubtful considering technology at the time. They didn’t actually use the seabed.

            Then there is the fact that if I found a gold vein on my land I would have to get permission to mine it. The latter wouldn’t change even if they held rights to the foreshore and seabed.

            • Anthony Karinski 4.1.1.1.1.1

              So you’re doubtful of whether they held the seabed and foreshore. Ok, but wouldn’t it at least be fair to let them argue their case in a court instead of having that basic right legislated away?

        • Lew 4.1.1.2

          DtB,

          considering that customary rights are based on what they did before the coming of the signing of Te Tiriti O Waitangi

          They quite explicitly are not. The Waitangi Tribunal cleared this idiotic canard up more than two decades ago in Wai 22, stating that treaty rights are rights to development, allowing the use of new methods, and development of properties for new (non-traditional) purposes. Yours is the absurd line of argument which holds that the Mãori owners of Sealord should be free to catch as much as they like using flax lines and dugout canoes and bone hooks.

          They didn’t actually use the seabed.
          (from your other comment below)

          Yes, they did. They harvested shellfish and seaweed and other things from the seabeds. That they may have been unable to exploit them to their full extent at the time is irrelevant for the reason above – it’s clear that local Mãori in many locations exercised complete dominion out to a distance of at least 12 miles, and this fact was recognised in the fisheries claims by the Waitangi Tribunal.

          Then there is the fact that if I found a gold vein on my land I would have to get permission to mine it.

          Anthony asked about titanium (presumably chosen as an arbitrary valuable mineral), you countered with gold (ownership of which is explicitly nationalised, along with only a very small handful of other minerals). The FSA and customary title to it changes nothing in relation to those nationalised minerals, and everything to do with other minerals.

          L

        • Lew 4.1.1.3

          DtB,

          What the MP is asking for is to have a different set of rules based upon race and that is racism.

          Oh, and I can’t let this stand, either. Māori aren’t arguing for different rights on the grounds of race – they’re arguing for their rights to foreshore and seabed to be enforced on the same grounds as their rights to dry land; that is, if the crown can’t prove that customary ownership (technically: ‘native title’) was extinguished, then land must be deemed to still be held in native title; one of the things the FSA did was reverse this test, so that if Māori were unable to prove that the area in question was not under native title then it was deemed to not be so.

          Aside from which, if you think Māori land rights in law have been protected to the same extent as Pākehā land rights (as ‘one law for all’ suggests), then I want some of that shit you’re smoking with Michael Laws. Margaret Mutu of Auckland University came up with an overall cash compensation figure of 0.06% – that being the amount Māori received of the settlement to which they would otherwise have been entitled for raupatu land, in settlements up to 2001. Individual settlements ranged between 34% ($716,000 out of $2.1m for Hauai) to 0.01% ($170m out of $1.2b for Ngāi Tahu). How was the benchmark worked out? Of course, it was the compensation paid to a Pākehā farmer whose land was returned to iwi as part of a settlement. This is documented in Ranginui Walker’s Ka Whawhai Tonu Matou.

          Anyone who thinks Māori have been riding high on the pig’s back off treaty settlements, given what they lost, has been blinded by the redneck revisionists. It’s beneath contempt, and should be beneath the left.

          L

  5. Walter 5

    As much as I’d like to see national crash and burn on this one – I’d rather see them pull it off, satisfying both Maori and ‘the rest’ in one go.

    In fact – what a good time to re-visit the deal, Johnny is pleading broke (so not too much compensation on the table) – but really wanting to pull off what Helen couldn’t (so motivated to get a win-win). Good timing for the MP too – Tariana goes out on a win (of sorts), and the MP shows its constituents that it can finally ‘get something’ for them.

    However, a symbolic win won’t satisfy some MP supporters, but I doubt that small group will ever be satisfied anyway. Pita knows this so will take what he can get.

  6. toad 6

    gobsmacked said: Therefore, the government should just repeal the Act, and let the courts decide. But are they willing to do that? So far, the signs are unclear.

    The Ministerial Review does not recommend that as a preferred option:

    Such a process is likely to be protracted, laborious and expensive and could result in an unmanageable patchwork of litigation. We do not see that having rights in the foreshore and seabed decided by the Common Law rules of Native or Aboriginal or customary Title or by the precedents and approaches of the Māori Land Court would facilitate our overall goal of seeking a reconciliation between competing approaches to the foreshore and seabed.

    I agree.

    • Maynard J 6.1

      “The Ministerial Review does not recommend that [letting the courts decide] as a preferred option”

      “I agree.”

      Yet it was a ‘legislative low point’ for Labour to prevent this going to the courts.

      So what should they have done? (that is not a smarmy question, but a genuine one – what do you see as the right course of action?)

      Edit: I believe Gobsmacked touches and elaborates upon this point.

  7. Tigger 7

    Look, I know how to solve this: referendum!

    Tariana wouldn’t complain I’m sure. She was happy to let us have a referendum on the issue of Civil Unions so why not this similarly divisive issue? She even voted against Civil Unions, undoubtedly because of her utter faith in referendums – clearly if the majority think something then it should be law. Let the people speak!!

  8. gobsmacked 8

    Er, so going to court is a basic right cruelly denied … and then suddenly morphs into a laborious, expensive process, best avoided? Bizzarre.

    From Hansard, shortly before Cullen retired:

    Hon Dr Michael Cullen: Is the Minister aware that the Act provides for access to the courts in terms of both territorial customary rights and specific usage rights?

    Hon Dr PITA SHARPLES: I am aware of that. But territorial customary rights are nothing compared with the customary rights that had been handed down generation after generation after generation that that member cut off. (my emphasis)

    ***

    So, what rights will now be restored, if we exclude the “day in court” and compensation?

  9. Red Rosa 9

    That elusive bod, the ‘average voter’ will look at this issue similarly, Eddie.

    If the FSA does not give Maori what they want, how much do they want? And what will it cost? And where does this leave me?

    So far it has all been shadow boxing. But the questions being asked by Peters and Dunne can’t be avoided for much longer.

    Key will soon have to front up, with some serious answers, on one of the trickiest issues for a long time. The last government gave it a damn good try. Now the ball is in his court.

    We will watch with interest.

  10. ak 10

    Great opportunity for Labour here. Agree to work with NACT and the MP for a cross-party solution, but seize the initiative and push that envelope a little harder.

    With the tories and the MP desperately trying to dampen things down (with press assistance), and Winnie desperate to make hay that no one really wants, why not transcend the whole race debate and push for free public access to all the foreshore and seabed – including that currently locked up? Legislatively tricky perhaps (and excluding ports, sanctuaries etc), but not impossible.

    With NACT , MP and the redneck block all currently gushing about customary rights and guaranteed access, how about one law for all – including the handful of wealthy pakeha keeping us off a big part of all our beaches?

  11. Tom Semmens 11

    Labour in government knew it could not risk allowing Maori their day in court lest they win. The Foreshore and Seabed has all the ingredients to become an explosive issue, because it has the potential to waken a sleeping dog – namely a clash between Pakeha nationalism and Maori nationalism.

    For all their lip service on ANZAC day and the like, Our establishment elites of all shades loath and fear the potential power of nationalism, and for good reason – if there is one lesson we can draw from the 20th century, it is if unleashed Nationalism will easily triumph over Capitalism, Globalism or Socialism.

    Key can’t have it both ways on this issue. He seems to think that if he agrees with the Maori party then does nothing that’ll defuse the problem. It won’t. If he cuts a deal with the iwi autocrats represented by the Maori party for ANY sort of property right then attempt to use a beltway consensus to shut down the resultant backlash then he will simply fail. It would – rightly – be seen as undemocratic stitch up between oligarchs distinguishable only by skin colour. Both mainstream parties would be losers if they colluded in such a thing – as Chris Trotter says, power would lie in the gutter, just waiting to be picked up. However, I fear that precisely this sort of backroom corporate deal, between the “right sort of chaps’ in suits who Key feels most comfortable with, is probably his preferred option.

    I think he was incredibly rash to have so early ruled out compensation as an easy and convenient option, because the Maori Party knows that it’s credibility – and political survival, given that Labour has decided to try and destroy it – is on the line.

    Labour as said little so far that it can’t backtrack on. I don’t doubt it’s inclination is to support some sort of deal. They still dominate the party vote amongst Maori after all. But Labour doesn’t have to state its position just yet. That’s the advantage of opposition. I imagine they are waiting to se the strength of the backlash – if any – before positioning themselves. National’s record in it’s first nine months shows it is quite capable of fucking it up itself, leaving Labour the luxury of time to seem how it plays out.

    • Why is it that everyone keeps saying that Labour denied Maori their day in Court?

      Section 33 of the FSA says:

      “High Court may find that a group held territorial customary rights

      The High Court may, on the application of a group, or on the application of a person authorised by the Court to represent the group, make a finding that the group (or any members of that group) would, but for the vesting of the full legal and beneficial ownership of the public foreshore and seabed in the Crown by section 13(1), have held territorial customary rights to a particular area of the public foreshore and seabed at common law.”

      If the finding was made there was then a process whereby either a reserve management plan for the area could be completed or the Crown was obligated with the successful group to “negotiating an agreement as to the nature and extent of the redress to be given by the Crown” (s 37).

      So Maori could go to Court to get a finding that had rights and if it was successful then negotiations would occur.

      It may be criticised on the basis that the ability to have the right ordered was watered down but the ability to go to court is clearly something that was preserved.

      • Lew 11.1.1

        micky, every time someone mentions the FSA extinguishing access to due process, you come up with this bullshit argument, as if this clayton’s right makes up for all the other rights which were legislated away by fiat and against the majority will of those who submitted on the act.

        And also ignoring the fact that not one single claimant has had anything granted under s33 – only one group (in FOUR YEARS of trying) got a scheme set up under s96.

        Section 33 quite clearly and explicitly does not constitute an argument against the assertion that Mãori were denied due process by the FSA. Try another line of argument, if you can find one (which you can’t, because there isn’t one).

        L

  12. toad 12

    Drako T Bastard said:What the MP is asking for is to have a different set of rules based upon race and that is racism.

    No, that’s actually what Labour and NZF did with the Foreshore and Seabed Act. That Act nationalised all foreshore and seabed that was or may have been subject to customary Maori title. However, that which was under private (largely non-Maori) fee simple title was left untouched.

    That is where the racism (different set of rules based on race) first came into it.

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      as I understand it, private title in New Zealand has never extended below the high tide mark.

  13. Doug 13

    Read Duncan Garner.
    http://www.3news.co.nz/Politics/DuncanGarnersBlog/tabid/1134/Default.aspx
    Excerpt.

    If Labour wants a shot in 2011, I suggest Goff grab Trevor by the neck and give him a smack in the chops – if he won’t then at least get Tau Henare to throw in the peoples elbow.

    Mallard is seriously affecting Labour’s future chances of having any decent relationship with the Maori Party. One Maori Party MP this told me this week, “Trevor can get f….. and so can Labour in 2011.”

    • gobsmacked 13.1

      So? The Maori Party are supporting right-wing policies. Labour oppose those policies. Why should they give the Maori Party a free ride?

      The “decent relationship” in 2011 that Maori Party MPs should focus on, is the one with their own voters.

      What are they in Parliament – and in a conservative coalition – for? What have they achieved? A review of the FSA leading to … no real change? And …?

      Nobody seems to have an answer, except “mana”. AKA, “baubles”.

      • Tigger 13.1.1

        Gob – you raise a point often overlooked. The Maori Party are deeply conservative on a range of issues and the fact that they appear to fit so neatly with ACT and National is further proof of that.

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    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • The Chinese coronavirus outbreak: what are the options for vaccines and treatments?
    By now you’ve probably heard of the coronavirus outbreak that started in Wuhan City, China. The number of cases is rising, up to about 300 with six deaths. Cases have been reported in several more Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, as well as in Japan, Thailand, and South Korea. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Educating New Zealand’s future workforce
    Judy Kavanagh Do you remember your first day at school? The education I received was for a very different world than the world of today. Along with huge social shifts there have been big changes in the New Zealand economy and the work people do. There are occupations unheard of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A casual attitude towards transparency
    Back in December, when the government was introducing new secrecy legislation on an almost daily basis, I posted about the Infrastructure Funding and Financing Bill. The Bill establishes a new class of public entity, "special purpose vehicles", which collect and spend public money and enjoy statutory powers. Despite this, they ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Against a carbon bailout
    If we are to avoid making the planet uninhabitable, we need to cut carbon emisisons fast. Which basicly means putting the fossil fuel industry - coal, gas, and oil - out of business. But this means that the banks and other lenders who have bankrolled the industry's environmental destruction will ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Still a criminal industry
    More evidence that the fishing industry suffers from pervasive criminality, with Forest & Bird highlighting some odd numbers in the annual statistics:The Annual Review Report For Highly Migratory Species Fisheries 2018/19 (Pg 4, Table 4) showed only 4% of commercial long lining trips for tuna and swordfish reported non-fish bycatch ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Controversy? Or Manufactroversy?
    A few days ago, New Zealand’s Minister of Education announced the wider release of a resource on climate change, which was initially trialled at a Christchurch school during 2018. According to the Minister, children will learn about “the role science plays in understanding climate change, aids understanding of both the response ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • The emerging coronavirus outbreak in China
    By now you’ve probably heard of the new virus causing an outbreak of severe pneumonia in China. The question on most people’s minds is, how worried should we be, especially as hundreds of millions of people will soon be travelling across China and beyond to visit family for the Lunar ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • How did climate change get so controversial?
    An excerpt from the book Cranky Uncle vs. Climate Change, released Feb 25. Our human brain is poorly equipped to deal with a threat like climate change. Over millions of years, we’ve evolved to avoid life-threatening dangers like predators jumping out of bushes. We’ve survived by quickly detecting and avoiding immediate, short-term ...
    1 week ago
  • Farmers are ruining Canterbury’s rivers
    Its summer, so people naturally want to go for a swim. But in South Canterbury, you can't, because the rivers are full of toxic goo:As of Monday, the Waihi River at Wilson Street footbridge, Geraldine, the Waihao River at Bradshaws Bridge, and three spots on the Opihi River - at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Sack Shane Jones
    Late last year, NZ First was caught trying to enrich itself from public office, with a dodgy forestry company linked to a number of NZ First figures sticking its hand out repeatedly for government money. Regional Economic Development Minister shane Jones' "explanations" were patently unconvincing, and his recusal from deciding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BIG idea physics
    This morning I’ve been having a quick look through some documentation from The Ministry of Education on proposed changes to NCEA Level 1 Science. For those not familiar with the NZ secondary education system, a typical student would complete NCEA level 1 at the end of year 11.  In this ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • Revolution in New Zealand? Not Even Close!
    No Fires Thanks, We're Kiwis: For the moment, in those close-to-home places where revolutions are born, there may be tetchiness and resentment, frustration and complaint, but nowhere is anybody uttering the cry that will bring a New Zealand revolution into being: “We have found the way to make tomorrow better ...
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #3
    Story of the Week... Editorial of the Week... Toon of the Week... Quote of the Week... Graphic of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... 'It's heart-wrenching': 80% of Blue Mountains and 50% of ...
    1 week ago
  • Britain exits the European Union and takes a sharp right turn
    by John Smith  Britain’s exit from the imperialist bloc known as the European Union (EU) is now irreversible. The crushing electoral defeat of the Labour Party has dismayed many workers and youth who had placed their hopes in Jeremy Corbyn, its left-wing leader. This article assesses these historic events, neither of which ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #3
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Jan 12, 2020 through Sat, Jan 18, 2020 Editor's Pick The Past and the Future of the Earth’s Oldest Trees Bristlecone pines have survived various catastrophes over the millennia, and they ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How climate change influenced Australia’s unprecedented fires
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections, and has been adapted into a new myth rebuttal on climate-wildfire connections with the short URL sks.to/wildfires Australia’s frightening bushfires, which kicked off an early fire season in September 2019, have already had cataclysmic effects, and the continent is still just in the early ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Gender Identity Ideology – A Partial Bibliography of Online Coverage
    This great resource has been contributed to Redline by Janie Doebuck. Janie made some notes on the bibliography: 1) It is by no means exhaustive. There are tons more gender critical posts, essays, articles, podcasts, youtube videos, etc. online. 2) There are links in the bibliography that are behind paywalls. There ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • About those biased Oscar Nominations
    There’s been a lot written about the 2020 Oscar Nominations and their apparent lack of diversity. It’s true, there are in fact no women nominated for the Best Director and very few nominees of colour across the board. But is this a result of a biased process or a symptom ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How New Zealand media reports chronic pain
    Hemakumar Devan Around three million New Zealanders access news media (both paper and online) every week. Yes, you heard that right! So, the potential for news media to shape public health beliefs is common sense. As chronic pain affects one in five New Zealanders, we wanted to find out how ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Still Waiting For American Democracy.
    Unfinished Republic: Though the United States' crimes against democracy are legion, most Americans are blissfully unaware of them. The brutal realities of American life: the officially sanctioned violence; the refusal to hold racists accountable for their actions; the seemingly endless tragedy of African-American suffering; of which White America is the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • In Outrage Over Its Bunk Science, Goop Finds Fuel for Growth
    Michael Schulson For years, experts have said that Goop, the wellness and lifestyle brand founded by the actor and entrepreneur Gwyneth Paltrow, markets pseudoscience and overblown cures. And for years, despite the criticism, Goop has just kept growing. Now the company, which was valued at $250 million in 2018, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Tobacco Excise Taxes and the Smokefree 2025 Goal: Some Ways Forward
    Janet Hoek, Richard Edwards, George Thomson, Andrew Waa, Nick Wilson Debate over tobacco tax increases has intensified as research indicates potentially conflicting policy directions. On the one hand, excise tax increases continue to stimulate quit attempts among smokers yet, on the other hand, they may lead to financial hardship for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #2, 2020
    Conflation and how to fix it VIa AMS,  Raul Lejano looks at what in a layperson's thinking would be called conflation— confusion and blending of entirely different topics— when people think about climate change. Ideology and the Narrative of Skepticism  (open access) starts with some arguably frightening false connections between the science and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Cranky Uncle’ smart phone game will show you how to disarm climate deniers
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bud Ward (Image: Courtesy of John Cook) When it comes to climate change, it seems every family has its own version of the proverbial Cranky Uncle. An uncle, cousin, grandparent, in-law, neighbor, whatever. Just think back to the recent holiday season’s large ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Science in the ’20s – part 1
      Outrageous, immoral or downright dangerous. That’s a description of the lifestyle of women “flappers” in the 1920s. Could it apply to science (and scientists) in the 2020s? Actually, you could look back at the past decade and see those, or similar terms, used about some science and scientists. Sometimes ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago
  • Postscript: Citizenship Granted.
    I am pleased to say that I have been granted NZ citizenship. I need to do the ceremony for things to be official, but the application was a success. I now join my son as a dual NZ-US citizen. To be fair, very little will change other than the fact ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Music: Morales is coming
    It will be no secret to longtime readers that I, Russell Brown, love the disco.   So I'm pretty excited by the fact that one of the greats of the game is returning this summer – and also pleased to say I have tickets to give away.Legendary mixer and DJ ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The WHO Vaccine Safety Summit – from someone who was actually there
    The conspiracy I saw a new conspiracy theory flying around the other day. According to the conspiracy (that seems to originate from Del Bigtree), the World Health Organization have been ‘caught on camera’ questioning the safety of vaccines. Gosh this sounds as though someone was a mole at a ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • The timely death of the British Labour Party
    Below is an article submitted to Redline by Alec Abbott  At its inception, the British Labour Party was a vehicle for the propagation of racist and imperialist views within the working-class. Such views are still widespread in the party, as they are in Europe’s Social-Democratic parties, though, in the case of ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Mystery China pneumonia outbreak likely caused by new human coronavirus
    Connor Bamford, Queen’s University Belfast Since December 2019, there has been a cluster of 59 cases of pneumonia in Wuhan, eastern China. The pneumonia is associated with a previously unidentified coronavirus related to the deadly SARS virus. Seven of those cases are thought to be serious, and one person – ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Yes, koalas are cute – but should we bring them to NZ? Errm, no
    It’s been hard to miss the extreme fires raging across Australia and the tragic plight of the animals – human and otherwise – affected by the fires’ insatiable spread. I know I’ve been captivated and concerned by the tales of how Australia’s famous wildlife has been coping. Koalas approaching cyclists ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s negative campaigning
    Anybody who looked into the Dirty Politics saga knows all too well that honesty is often in short supply within the National Party. You would think that after the exposure the John Key government received over their untruthful attack politics, the National Party would learn from its "mistakes" and leave ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ending the government’s charade over water
    For the past decade, the government has been responding to the obvious Treaty issues raised by water allocation with the mantra that "no-one owns water". But last year, the Waitangi Tribunal ruled that actually, Māori owned it, and that those rights had never been extinguished. They recommended that iwi bring ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Northern Ireland joins the civilised world
    Same-sex marriage has finally become legal in Northern Ireland. But not through any decision of the Northern Irish Executive or Assembly, which has only just reformed after a three year walkout by the DUP; instead, Westminster made that decision for them. I've talked before about the constitutional impropriety of this, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • I had an intense conversation at work today.
    Claire Cohen-Norris volunteers with Citizens Climate Lobby as a chapter founder and leader in rural New York. Her climate advocacy sprung from her drive to provide a secure, joyful and fulfilling life for her two wonderful children. It has become a life’s mission, shared with her like-minded husband and partner. Claire ...
    2 weeks ago
  • French transport workers take on Macron over pension reform
    by John Edmundson Starting on December 5th, 2019 workers in the Parisian rail network commenced an open-ended strike in opposition to French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposed changes to their pension scheme. Rail workers in the Metro Underground have, for decades, had retirement conditions that compensate them for the low wages, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • What a difference the decimal point makes
    I’m back at work following a nearly three-week break over Christmas. We were fortunate to be offered a house to stay in for a week over Christmas, which enabled us to have a holiday in Dunedin and see the extended family reasonably cheaply. But the house came with a catch:  ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Who’s Going To Stop Him?
    Blank And Pitiless: Having ordered the assassination of the Iranian General, Qasem Soleimani, President Donald Trump promised to reduce the cultural monuments of Iran’s 3,000 year-old civilisation to rubble if a revenge attack was mounted. A breach of international law? Certainly. A war crime? Indisputably. Who’s going to stop him? Nobody.WHAT ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A worker’s story
    This interview is from Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement (AWSM) and is the first of an ongoing series of interviews they plan to do with workers from various sectors who are having their well being and livelihoods damaged. They begin with an educator in Southland. Due to the attitude and actions ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #2
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Jan 5, 2020 through Sat, Jan 11, 2020 Editor's Pick Debunked Australian Bushfire Conspiracy Theories Were Pushed by Alex Jones, Murdoch Media   As unusually intense and widespread bushfires have ...
    3 weeks ago
  • J.K. Rowling, the Seattle Library, and the Issue That Must Not Be Named
    This article was submitted to Redline by Seattle-based activist Lucinda Stoan J.K. Rowling recognizes repression when she sees it.  That’s why the author of the wildly popular Harry Potter books recently tweeted in defense of Maya Forstater. Forstater lost her job for stating that sex is real and immutable. A judge ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 weeks ago
  • Rules of Empire: Laws simply do not apply and “National Security” excuses all else.
    Empires rise and fall, and the American Empire is absolutely no different. But while an Empire, in order to further the footprint, it seems to pay to do one primary thing above all else: project that everything – everything – is “simply for the good of the world” at large, ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    3 weeks ago
  • Indian lessons for NZ workers – the January 8 general strike
                    by Phil Duncan On Wednesday (January 8) another massive general strike took place in India.  Some 250 million industrial workers, white-collar workers, agricultural labourers struck against the government’s economic policies and attacks on the Muslim population through new proposed citizenship rules. This ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The action that counts
    Over on Newsroom, Professor Jacqueline Beggs writes about the action she is taking on climate change. Its the usual list: reduce meat, don't fly, consume less. I'm doing some of this myself, and none of it hurts - but the way our economic system is constructed means the impact of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 weeks ago
  • Fossil fuel political giving outdistances renewables 13 to one
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Karin Kirk Corporations, special interest groups, and individuals inject billions of dollars into the American political system every year. Much of the financial support in politics is concealed from public view, as some rules – and loopholes – allow “dark money” and ...
    3 weeks ago

  • FAQ – Everything you need to know about the Big New Zealand Upgrade
    Today, our Government announced the biggest infrastructure investment in a generation. We’re investing $12 billion to upgrade and build rail, roads, schools and hospitals across the country – modernising our infrastructure, preparing for climate change and helping to future-proof our economy. Find out everything you need to know about the ...
    12 hours ago
  • Week That Was: 2020
    We are back for 2020! From changes to Family Funded Care, to a record high number of Kiwis in construction in the trades - we're already back making progress on those long-term challenges. Read all about it and more ...
    5 days ago
  • Winston Peters: “Ihumātao deal still a long way off”
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters told Mike Hosking that a settlement deal regarding Ihumātao in Auckland is still a long way off. The Maori King's flag was lowered at the site near Auckland Airport yesterday, sparking suggestions an announcement of a deal could be made by Waitangi Day. Pania Newton, ...
    7 days ago
  • Winston Peters accuses Gerry Brownlee of ‘politicising’ Holocaust memorial
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters is accusing Gerry Brownlee of "politicising" a Holocaust memorial event after the National MP questioned the lack of Kiwi representation there. The Yad Vashem World Holocaust Remembrance Centre in Jerusalem, Israel, is holding the World Holocaust Forum on January 23 to mark 75 years since ...
    7 days ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund to help Waipukurau Pā sites attract thousands of tourists
    The Ngā Ara Tipuna - Waipukurau Pā Site Interpretation project is receiving $2.798 million from the Provincial Growth Fund. It is is expected to boost the town's employment and tourism, creating sixteen new jobs once completed and attract up to 15,000 visitors a year. Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development ...
    1 week ago
  • “Common sense will prevail, not extremism” Winston Peters backs Shane Jones’ pro-meat stance
    New Zealand First leader Winston Peters is backing his MPs who have spoken out against a new climate change teaching resource that advises students to eat less meat to save the planet. The new teaching resource, announced by Education Minister Chris Hipkins and Climate Change Minister James Shaw, tells students ...
    1 week ago
  • Violent assault on paramedic highlights need for law change
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Justice Today’s horrific violent assault of an on-duty female paramedic which rendered her unconscious is truly unsettling. “Our thoughts are with the paramedic, her loved ones and the St John’s team at Warkworth Station,” says New Zealand First Justice Spokesperson Darroch Ball. “Harsher penalties for perpetrators ...
    1 week ago
  • Acting PM Winston Peters confirms NZDF troops in Iraq not hit by Iranian attacks
    Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters called for calm and diplomacy following Iranian missile strikes on bases housing United States troops in Iraq, but confirmed New Zealand's base in the country was not hit. The New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) was earlier today investigating claims New Zealand's base in Iraq had ...
    1 week ago
  • Kaikōura $10.88 million boost in tourism & business
    Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Parliamentary Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10.88 million to boost business and tourism opportunities in Kaikōura, Parliamentary Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. As part of the Kaikōura Marina Development Programme, the following two projects will receive ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Delivering a stable water supply to Wairarapa
    Hon. Ron Mark, New Zealand First List MP based in Wairarapa The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $7.11 million to create a sustainable water supply for the Wairarapa. The PGF will provide a $7 million investment to Wairarapa Water Limited to progress the Wairarapa Water Storage Scheme towards procurement, consenting, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing consents hit highest level since 1974
    Housing consents have hit a 45-year high, as Statistics NZ data shows a total of 37,010 residential consents were issued in the year to November --- the first time they have breached the 37,000 mark since the mid-1970s. Statistics NZ said the trend had been rising since late 2011, when ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Darroch Ball MP: “Violence against first responders is a problem on the rise”
    New Zealand First MP Darroch Ball says that a paramedic being kicked unconscious last night in an attempted burglary in Warkworth, north of Auckland, is a symptom of a larger problem. "Incidents like this are becoming more and more frequent...and it’s getting worse," Mr Ball said. The MP is pushing for ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Statement on evacuation of New Zealanders from Wuhan
    “I spoke with Prime Minister Morrison again this afternoon and we have confirmed that we will work together on a joint ANZAC assisted departure of Australians and New Zealanders from Wuhan,” Jacinda Ardern said. “Specific details of the evacuation plan, including the medical protocols that will be applied to returning ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • The New Zealand Upgrade Programme
    Rail, roads, schools and hospitals will be built and upgraded across the country under the new $12 billion New Zealand Upgrade Programme announced by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. The programme: Includes investments in roads, rail, hospitals and schools to future-proof the economy Will give a $10 billion boost to New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • School infrastructure upgrades ramping up
    The New Zealand Upgrade Programme is already underway, with schools busy getting building work started over the Christmas break. The Coalition Government announced just before the end of last year $400 million in new funding for most state schools to invest locally in building companies and tradies to fix leaking ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Flicking the switch on a clean powered public service
    Our Government’s programme to upgrade infrastructure and modernise the economy will help more communities to be part of the solution to climate change through a clean-powered public service. Minister for Climate Change James Shaw today announced the first group of projects from the New Zealand Upgrade Programme’s clean powered public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Government of Infrastructure delivers for New Zealanders
    Infrastructure and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says today’s capital investment announcements show the Coalition Government is the Government of Infrastructure. $7 billion in projects have been announced today as part of the Government’s $12 billion New Zealand Upgrade Programme, which will see capital spending at its highest rate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Boost for child, maternity and mental health
    $300 million dollar capital investment in health, divided among four focus areas: Child and maternal health - $83 million Mental health and addiction - $96 million Regional and rural service projects – $26 million Upgrading and fixing aging hospital facilities - $75 million Contingency of $20 million The New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Transport infrastructure upgrades to get NZ moving and prepared for the future
    $6.8 billion for transport infrastructure in out six main growth areas - Auckland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Wellington, Canterbury and Queenstown. $1.1 billion for rail. $2.2 billion for new roads in Auckland. The Government’s programme of new investments in roads and rail will help future proof the economy, get our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Growing and modernising the NZ economy
    A new programme to build and upgrade roads, rail, schools and hospitals will prepare the New Zealand economy for the future, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. “The $12 billion New Zealand Upgrade Programme uses our capacity to boost growth by making targeted investments around the country, supporting businesses and local ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Future proofing New Zealand’s rail
    Minister for State Owned Enterprises Winston Peters says the funding of four major rail projects under the New Zealand Upgrade Programme is yet another step in the right direction for New Zealand’s long-term rail infrastructure. “This Government has a bold vision for rail. We said we would address the appalling ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Delivering infrastructure for a modern NZ
    Roads, rail, schools and hospitals will be built and upgraded across the country under the $12 billion New Zealand Upgrade Programme announced today, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says. “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to invest in New Zealand – modernising our infrastructure, preparing for climate change and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • $1.55m support for Hawke’s Bay three waters services review
    The Government is pleased to announce a $1.55 million funding contribution to assist Hawke’s Bay investigate voluntary changes to the region’s three waters service delivery arrangements. “Over the last 18 months, the five Hawke’s Bay councils have been collaborating to identify opportunities for greater coordination in three waters service delivery across ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Minister welcomes report of nation’s household plastic rubbish, recycling practices
    A new report on New Zealand’s plastic rubbish and recycling practices is being welcomed by the Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage.  “The report by WasteMINZ provides a valuable insight into what’s ending up in household rubbish and recycling bins around the country. It highlights the value of much ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Government considers retirement income policy review recommendations
    The Government is now considering the recommendations of the Retirement Commissioner’s review into New Zealand’s retirement income policies. “The review raises a number of important issues in relation to New Zealanders’ wellbeing and financial independence in retirement, particularly for vulnerable people,” the Minister for Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Kris Faafoi, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • PM announces election date as September 19
    The 2020 General Election will be held on Saturday 19 September, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. “I will be asking New Zealanders to continue to support my leadership and the current direction of the Government, which is grounded in stability, a strong economy and progress on the long term ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund supports Waikato youth into constructionProvincial Growth Fund supports Waika...
    Two projects focussed on supporting Waikato youth into the construction industry have been given combined funding of just over $1 million from the Te Ara Mahi allocation of the Provincial Growth Fund, Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today.  The two Te Ara Mahi PGF projects announced are: ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund supports Waikato youth into construction
    Two projects focussed on supporting Waikato youth into the construction industry have been given combined funding of just over $1 million from the Te Ara Mahi allocation of the Provincial Growth Fund, Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today.  The two Te Ara Mahi PGF projects announced are: ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand to support Pacific Public Sector Hub
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced New Zealand’s support for a Pacific-led hub that will strengthen public services across the region. “Strengthening public services is a core focus of New Zealand’s Pacific Reset, as efforts to improve democratic governance in the Pacific contributes to a strong, stable and more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister pays tribute to journalist, author and broadcaster, Gordon McLauchlan
    The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, has paid tribute to well-known New Zealand author, journalist and broadcaster, Gordon McLauchlan, following Mr McLauchlan’s death today. “Gordon held a statesman-like place in New Zealand’s media, which was fittingly acknowledged in last year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours, when he was ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister wishes best of luck to those heading back to school
    As Kiwi kids and teachers return to classrooms over the coming weeks, the families of around 428,000 students will feel a bit less of a financial pinch than in previous years, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The Government’s decision to increase funding for schools that don’t ask parents for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Health staff to meet flights from China as precautionary measure
    Public health staff will begin meeting flights from China from tomorrow, to actively look for signs of the novel coronavirus and provide advice, information and reassurance to passengers. Health Minister Dr David Clark says the additional measures are being taken following the arrival of the disease in Australia, via flights ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • National Yearling Sales 2020
    National Yearling Sales at Karaka   26 January 2020    [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY] Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here on opening day of the 2020 National Yearling Sales Series. Let us all acknowledge Sir Peter Vela and the Vela family for their outstanding contribution to the New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government and construction industry to build big, lift productivity with Transformation Plan
    Delivering the workforce and productivity gains required to build the houses, schools, roads, rail and hospitals New Zealand needs will become easier with the Government-industry Construction Sector Transformation Plan launched today, Minister for Building and Construction Jenny Salesa says. “The action plan launched today delivers on the Government’s Construction Sector ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Log trains to begin on Wairoa-Napier line
    Log trains are about to start running between Wairoa and Napier following Provincial Growth Fund investment to reopen the rail line, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. The Government invested $6.2 million to reopen the mothballed rail line which was closed after significant storm damage in 2012. “With PGF ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Minister of Defence concludes successful visit with his US counterpart
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark met with United States Secretary of Defense Mark Esper today. “This was an excellent opportunity to meet with one of our closest security partners,” Ron Mark said. “The main focus of the meeting was to discuss challenges that New Zealand and the United States share ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand acknowledges ICJ decision on Myanmar
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