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To Robert Reid, respect

Written By: - Date published: 2:24 pm, April 27th, 2014 - 134 comments
Categories: election 2014, labour, national - Tags: ,

Robert Reid

This morning on Q&A I had an unusual experience. I heard one of the panellists talk sense and passionately advocate a left wing view. The video is here.  Apologies but there is an ad before and I do not know if there is a youtube version that can be embedded.

Robert Reid is the secretary of the First Union National Distribution Union.  Hopefully we will see his particular skills used more often.

The debate posted an interesting contrast.  Political Scientist Ray Miller laughed when Moira Coatesworth said that Labour was in good shape.  She was referring to membership and activism which is as good now as it has been for many years, and he was talking about media perception which admittedly is poor.  Labour is losing the media framing battle.  Given the owners and heads of the media organisations as well as the front persons are aligned with or sympathetic to National this is not surprising.

Deborah Coddington was also on the panel.  Why a member of a 1% party should be used regularly is a bit weird.  She chose to use her time to repeat National attack lines.

Robert then spoke.  He started off by rubbishing the myth making that was occurring.  Shane Jones, bless him, does not represent the working class in Parliament.  Reid mentioned that Jones had very few links to the trade unions.  Reid noted that the overwhelming support in his union, which is not aligned, was with Labour.  He emphasised the need and desire for change present amongst ordinary people and thought that Jones’ resignation would have little effect.

Then the mantra that elections are won in the centre was trotted out by Millar.  Reid’s response, that the problem was that people who tend to be on the edge of society were the ones not voting, essentially because they felt they were unrepresented.  He rubbished the suggestion that the working class are all rednecks and have reactionary views.  He pointed out that half of the working class are women and that there are many different ethnicities involved.

The discussion was jarring in that Reid was talking about policies that affect ordinary people and the others were talking about how well the game of politics was being played.

Reid finished off by refuting Susan Woods’ claim that the economy was going reasonably well.  He said that for working people it was a disaster and that New Zealand has more poverty now than it has had for many years.  He rebuffed a suggestion that Labour was not talking about the issues and mentioned the launch of the manufacturing policy which was well received even by employers organisations.

All in all it was a very good performance by Reid and he showed very well what Labour and the Greens have to do to win the election this year.

Our MPs and our activists need to talk with passion.  They need to talk about the issues that really matter such as jobs, poverty and the environment.  And they need to refute the right wing framing of issues that is and will continue to occur.

134 comments on “To Robert Reid, respect”

  1. Chooky 1

    +100…Good Stuff

    “Our MPs and our activists need to talk with passion. They need to talk about the issues that really matter such as jobs, poverty and the environment. And they need to refute the right wing framing of issues that is and will continue to occur.”

    • rhinocrates 1.1

      I agree whole-heartedly. A lot of the front-benchers are front troughers – Mallard, King, Goff in particular, selling out the party and the country for the sake of their own meal tickets. When have they ever cared about anyone but themselves? Robertson, amazingly, has shown passion at long last in pursuing Collins, if only because it raises his profile.

      Labour’s caucus has too long been dominated by the lazy, the obsolete and the self-interested. They have to remember why they’re in parliament and who they are supposed to represent and Cunliffe needs to have the daring to promote those who do care over those whose manifesto is the Bellamy’s menu.

    • Rodel 1.2

      MS Thanks for that video. The unknown political pom “scientist” and Coddington ( who is she anyway?) waffling( definition- chiefly Brit.speak or write, esp. at great length, without saying anything important or useful:) was brilliantly countered by Robert Reid.
      Why those two with their supercilious opinions without evidence are invited onto these panels escapes me.

      At last I see someone who tells NZ the truth with passion- that Key, English and co are actually incompetent losers- (emperors with no clothes) causing their own people to lose out..Unbelievable incompetence! Grrrr!

      Get Reid on campaign video adverts.

    • thechangeling 1.3

      Robert really was a breath of fresh air laced with rational and logical arguments that the other presenters couldn’t match at all.

    • Enough is Enough 1.4

      Yes and No

      The question which remains unanswered is why do 41 – 48% of the electorate support National when for many of them it is not in their best interests to do so.

      When we talk about the middle it is those voters who swing between the two. But for the best part of a decade have been entrenched in the blue corner.

      Why is that. Why do they remain there.

      Polls (including Labour’s internal polling) confirm this to still be the case which suggests the missing million will probably fall into line with the 2 miliion to turn up to vote.

      • Anne 1.4.1

        @ Enough is Enough.

        Why do they remain there?. Well, I have acquaintances and a few family members who came from ordinary working class backgrounds but who were able to take advantage of the first class free education system we had in the 50s, 60s,70s and at least the first half of the 80s. They became qualified in their fields of endeavour and were able to buy nice homes and live a comfortable – and in a few cases – mortgage-free lives. They considered themselves no longer working class. That meant a change of political allegiance. The excuses they came up with for no longer supporting Labour were the usual… solo mums living off the fat of the land and greedy unions wanting more than their fair share of the cake.

        The truth of the matter they became snobby little social climbers. Their children went to private schools (or top Grammar Schools) and made ‘good’ marriages. But somewhere down the path I’m betting its all going to turn sour. If not their children then their grandchildren are going to fall on hard times and they will blame the National government (if it stays in power) totally ignoring the fact they were the ones who propped them up in the first place out of greed and snobbery.

        The above doesn’t answer your question entirely, but it goes some way to pointing at what I suspect is a significant reason why many remain with National.

        • Colonial Viper

          Have you read the latest Archdruid report yet? I mentioned it to RL a day or two ago.


          Some of the comments underneath are telling –
          Read this comment for instance by a Shane Wilson

          My grandfather’s 100th birthday was a chance to observe the differences in the generations up close, and it was truly sad. You could definitely tell who had been through a depression and learned and grown through privation and who had only known relative privilege and comfort. It was interesting to look around at those of the silent generation & the baby boomers and see the trappings of aging–greying hair, stooped shoulders, age spots, feebleness in some cases, yet none of the wisdom or maturity of the greatest generation. It’s truly frightening watching Peter Pan generations grow old but not up, and realizing how much has been lost in the short 20 years between those born in 1914 and those born in 1934- just noticing how overall miserable the silent generation & boomers are compared with the greatest generation, it’s like they’re aware on some fundamental level that they squandered their lives and opportunities, and the existential strain is killing them. It doesn’t look good for the future as the next round of crisis comes on. I see a lot of elder abuse/abandonment as these entitled enfant terribles make unreasonable demands of their children & grandchildren.

          • Anne

            Thanks for that CV. A very telling story. Plenty of people can see where the world is going, but the powers-that-be will not pick up the ring and do something about it.

        • greywarbler

          I was thinking today that some philosopher must have come up already with what I just thought of. That affluence ruins society. That all the time I was thinking that we were working towards prosperity and betterment of society with everybody having a reasonable time on the planet, and people who made the effort to be fair to each other even when they didn’t like each other, I was entirely wrong.

          So many baby boomers don’t want to think of anyone but themselves and perhaps family and getting and having money. Their charity is entirely at whim and preferably gifted overseas, it’s more exotic that way. The people over in the other suburbs with children with glue ear and snotty noses, and who are trying to find out how to keep their teenagers from harm, they are just losers. And why should people who have accumulated money through their hard work, pay taxes beyond a low percentage, even marginal taxes – when it will be just squandered on such people, instead of being spent on fine wine, fine cars, fine houses, designer clothes, expensive holidays or spare houses, and regular hospital and psychiatric clinic sessions for their or their children’s OCDs.

          All my life I, and the society I’ve been brought up in have had the wrong idea about what a good country to live in was. And if that is not a proper English sentence too bad.

          • Anne

            Hi grewwarbler

            Replying to your on 28th April:

            My computer cum monitor cum god only knows what else… crashed on me 5 days ago. Have been suffering withdrawal symptoms ever since. My current problem is that I now can’t get a full screen Standard site and the font is way too small. So, if there is anyone who can help me in this regard? It’s something to do with the new set-up (I had Windows Seven installed).

            Anyway to answer your thoughts grewwarbler… its a great example of human nature taking over from the well intentioned efforts of former administrations. Those who were lucky enough to be the recipients of the prosperity created, only want more and more and they don’t care that it is at the expense of those who were not so lucky. It had nothing to do with “the losers” not working harder – something they like to believe – and everything to do with just not being in the right place at the right time.

  2. he was like a gust of fresh air blowing thru a dank/fetid room..

    ..and every labour/progressive mp/aspirant should take it as a master-class –

    • in how to call ‘bullshit!’ on everyone in the room..
  3. Marksman33 3

    Sorry Micky,just to let you know Robert is secretary of FIRST Union of which I am a delegate.He always speaks a lot of sense.

  4. Clemgeopin 4

    Yes, I was very impressed with his knowledgeable views.
    He came across well. I liked the way he expressed his commitment to Labour with so much passion. I think it will help if Mr Cunliffe and other Labour people show similar heartfelt passion to the Labour values and policies in their media appearances.

  5. Second Thoughts 5

    I watch too – thought he was good even though told a porky that the union doesn’t tell their who to vote for. They are clearly anti national

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1

      No. They are clearly 70% pro-Labour, the figure cited by Reid. He didn’t mention “we polled our members to find out how anti-National they are”. That’s your spin, or porky if you prefer.

      • Second Thoughts 5.1.1

        No the First Union monthly newsletter has Syd telling us to change the government – I think that is telling the members how to vote

        • freedom

          Second Thoughts, someone is always telling someone to change the government
          but for clarity, here is the full text from the First Union President, Syd Keepa.


          John Key has announced the Election date, which will
          be Saturday 20 September; in six months’ time.
          FIRST Union will be working hard to get its
          members who are not enrolled to enrol, and will
          encourage them to vote.

          FIRST believes that the political parties that support
          workers and people on the margins of society would be
          the most practical political parties to vote for. However,
          the CTU and FIRST Union campaign is not going to be
          based around encouraging citizens who to vote for, but
          around changing the government.

          879,000 eligible voters did not vote at the 2011
          elections. Maori non-voters had the highest percentage
          of non-voters at 25.9%, followed by Pacific Island non-
          voters at 25.4%. Therefore to have a chance at a change
          of government the job of FIRST Union is to get people
          enrolled and out to vote. If 150,000 of those non-voters
          had voted for a change of government in 2011, the
          current National government would not be in power.
          FIRST Union will be appealing to its membership to
          enrol and vote, and will encourage its members to get
          their whanau to do the same. With our members’ help,
          we will hopefully be able to lock this government up
          and throw away the KEY.

          Nga mihi koutou katoa
          Syd Keepa

    • Delia 5.2

      It is not a porky. the PSA refuses to tell its members who to vote for, hence it did not join with the Food and Services union on this fact alone. Not all unions tell its members how to vote (thank goodness)

      • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2.1

        Gosh, yes, because then you’d have to obey, wouldn’t you? Poor you. Sob sob.

  6. Kat 6

    Saw this live this morning and was impressed with what Reid had to say and how he delivered it. You could tell by the hollow laughter of Wood, Miller and Coddington at the end that Reid owned that episode.

  7. i liked how ray millers’ carpet-slippers nearly fell off..

    ..(if he had a pipe he would have dropped it..)

    ..and coddington had a ‘well..i never!’ look on her face..

    ..after reid called them both out as the rightwing-framing bullshit-artists they are..

  8. Bearded Git 8

    Yes Reid was great. Why do we not get more of this on the MSM?

    All Labour candidates should take a look at the video and learn how to handle the media.

  9. One Anonymous Bloke 9

    Yeah, compare and contrast with Pagani’s performance on The Nation. Reid set a benchmark. No wingnut narrative for him.


  10. Nick 10

    Well said, whenever you hear centre and middle think of the waistline. So long as times are good and living easy the waist can easily become fat, when times get tough “accidental thinness” becomes he norm. The Scots “political scientist” is being made fat on the taxes paid by myself and the workers, he has no right to dine at our table at our cost. A little thinness might adjust his thinking, the “centre” might just diminish to insignificance.

    Mr Reid was fantastic at dispelling the myths of “conventional wisdom”, and having the evidence at hand. Very good.

  11. left for dead 11

    yes I thought he was clear in is views,Who was that chap with the slippers,do we pay him for that nonsence.Mind you both stations [not wonting to use trade names]had rubbish(so called) hosts.

  12. Blue 12

    Priceless. It was business as usual, three nodding heads fresh from reading their National Party press releases all agreeing with each other about how Labour is screwed, divided, in crisis and just generally a basket case – because one MP is leaving.

    Then, some guy at the end opens his mouth and oh look, it’s a real person speaking, not someone who interviews their keyboard for a living. Saying that Shane Jones isn’t and never was the Saviour of the Working Class, and that shockingly, working people vote Labour for reasons other than the guy who expensed porn a few years ago, which is the only time most people have ever heard of him.

    Reality invades Tellyland. Oops. Where’s Josie Pagani when you need her?

    • Ant 12.1

      The most hilarious thing was as soon as one myth was busted by Reid, they tried to move to another myth of middle New Zealand being all managers and the self employed 😀

  13. Once was Pete 13

    Actually, they all made reasonable points. The debate here encapsulates the problem for labour at the moment. Sorry to say it but too many seem to be drinking the ‘cool aid’. Yes, Reid made some good points, but Miller and Coddington are dead right about elections being won in the middle. For Labour the middle ground is at the edge because they have by and large left this territory for National and migrated left.

    • weka 13.1

      “ELections are won in the middle”

      [citation needed]

      • Colonial Viper 13.1.1

        Once was Pete means “won in the middle of Remuera, Davenport and Karori.”

        • Anne

          Its Devonport CV – tut tut.

          Best not to equate Devonport with Remuera. Yes, it has its fair share of yuppies (and sadly they’re growing in number) but it has many artists, literati and generally some very colourful individuals. Devonport people are well known for their bloody-mindedness and independent attitude. That’s why I like living here. 🙂

          They certainly wouldn’t take kindly to being compared to Remuera.

      • mickysavage 13.1.2

        Yep the statement is simplistic. It presupposes that people are one dimensional and their political choice can be predicted on where they are along an artificial pendulum. And it makes no allowance for perception issues for instance. My personal view is that a passionate and articulate leader can achieve a lot even though he may not match where most people are on the pendulum.

        And what does the mythical middle voter believe in? I suspect that they will believe, for instance, that it is appalling that 280,000 children live in poverty.

        And the competition for votes are often matters of competing emotions, hope on the left and fear on the right. Whichever emption wins out can predict how someone is going to vote.

        Agreed this is way too simplistic an approach. Unfortunately par for the course for the MSM.

        • weka

          I increasingly of the opinion that there is no such thing as middle NZ. NZ culture doesn’t exist on a line (thankfully). The whole middle NZ thing looks like a political construct that gets used by all sides to promote certain ideas. I agree that we need more nuanced, intelligent and depth analysis.

          As for the MSM, fuck ’em. We should all take to the streets in the next five months and mobilise the vote in ways that they can’t see and show them that they don’t own this country.

          • Skinny

            That’s it Weka good stuff, pretty much made my mind up to take time off work (AL) for the last 10 days. Hit the road in my sisters campervan, map out some area’s to hit.

        • Once was Pete

          It simply assumes that voters will fall into some sort of distribution curve and that the bulk of voters will be in the middle. That middle ground shifts depending on the relative popularity of the parties. That is why the battle for the middle is so important.
          National have come quite a way into this middle ground. NZ First obviously has some of it. There simply are not enough voters at the ends of the spectrum for any one group to carry the day. And that is where Labour is stuck right now – too far left.
          I agree that a passionate and articulate leader can make a difference, but Labour has a leader who is hard to believe in. Virtually every announcement has been flawed, and the public perception right now is of a party in turmoil. That is a hard base to win from.

          • weka

            distribution curve of what?

            • Once was Pete


              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Weka, you’re going to have to simplify the question so that OWP can understand it.

                • Once was Pete

                  I understood it. Clearly you didn’t!

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    The question regarding the nature of “some sort”. Your argument is that political opinion is gathered around a central point, whereas credible models describe such traits as libertarian or authoritarian as applying across the left/right divide.

                    There is no clear definition of the centre. Is it Winston’s pandering to bigotry or Dunne’s pandering to anyone who will fund his election campaign? As has been noted, the majority of votes do not collect around either of them.

                    If there is a left and right of the Labour Party it might be that those opinions are distributed like a bell curve, and similarly for The Oravida party.

                    But it all depends what you mean by “some sort”. Hence the question that went right over your head.

        • karol

          Changing the search terms and filters, shifts the focus. Much empirical research, does not use the term “empirical evidence” in the abstracts.

          Filtering to only include publications from 2010 shows a shift in focus towards issues of redistribution, globalisation and inequality.

          And removing the “empirical evidence for” key words, while maintaining the 2010+ filter, show the same focus.

          Basically, there are a lot of caveats in the research – is the median voter model a self-fulfilling hypothesis? What happens to parties that target niche voters? Greens for instance?

          • Matthew Hooton

            It is only an economic model, of course, but it has a fairly good record of predicting voting behaviour and election outcomes. It does not work so well for parties, as you point out, that target niche voters like the Greens. But the Labour Party is not a niche party – it aspires to 40%+ of the vote. It is very difficult to believe anything other than a median voter strategy will ever deliver this, but we shall see on 20 Sept.

            • karol

              Yes, but the question i have is whether the use of the “median voter model” is self-fulfilling? Parties accept the model and campaign in accordance with it, thus producing the outcome predicted by the model – circular thing. Meanwhile a lot of people not targeted by the campaigns, cease to vote…. and on it goes. Ultimately, it undermines democracy.

              The median voter model is also pretty much the product of the FPP system, and not so relevant to MMP.

        • Once was Pete

          Thanks. Interesting reading.

    • Skinny 13.2

      Come on Pete ‘middle ground’ the whole of the last week I’ve heard from the ‘swing voters’ the bullshit rhetoric was all the same “I uses to vote Labour” the truth is most of them are Tories why because as they have aged (baby-boomers), they have become financially comfortable and don’t like the thought of a CGT upsetting their little rental nest egg.
      * obviously not speaking of all.

      Forget this group and go after the maybe I will, maybe I can’t be bothered vote. The ones that get sucked in by and rightwing media propaganda that says the polls say National have won so why bother. When you snap these people (which I’ve done regularly) with 10,000 was the difference last election they soon realise and curse themselves.

      Key-National and their cheerleaders like Slater, Hooton and the rest know if we mass out the 800,000 it’s quite a sound beating they will suffer.

      • Once was Pete 13.2.1

        It is all very well to call it ‘bullshit rhetoric, but that 800,000 is probably going to follow a similar distribution curve to the election results. that means a significant chunk of them will also fall in the middle ground. Admittedly it may skew to the left a little more, but how can you be sure that the great bulk of the missing 800,000 are in the main labour voters?

        • felix

          “that 800,000 is probably going to follow a similar distribution curve to the election results”

          Based on what?

          Are you saying there are about 400,000 National voters out there who don’t know if they want to vote National or not?

          • Matthew Hooton

            I’ve done an analysis of turnout in 2008 and 2011 by electorate and the turnout drop was spread across electorates. One explanation could be that it was mainly left people in higher-income and lower-income communities that stopped voting stopped voting. Another is that turnout dropped more uniformly than the “missing million” lefties theory holds, because voters, left and right, perceived (wrongly) that 2011 was a dead-cert for National.
            Labour is currently betting a lot that the first explanation is the correct one.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Or perhaps your stupid assumption that Labour will target all non-voters equally isn’t so much a stupid assumption as a deliberately deceitful false frame.

              After all, you derive your income from lying, eh.

              • Disraeli Gladstone

                But if Hooton’s latter theory is true, then it’s irrelevant what voters Labour targets. As the election draws closer, those right-leaning votes will vote because they fear a Labour win.

                It’s a pretty big ‘if’, but I don’t see the assumption that Hooton is saying Labour’s going to push for Nat-leaning voters to vote.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  What “theory”? “I’ve done an analysis” is Hooton-speak for suiting his reasoning to his conclusion.

                  Labour are “betting” that they can persuade left leaning voters to turn out in greater numbers. Hooton would love that to fail so he tailors an argument to measure.

                • Skinny

                  Hooton also knows that soft voters (swing) that may have voted for Key- National at the previous election became disappointed and choose to opt out of voting for him last time, in effect they sat on their hands in a passive protest not welling to vote elsewhere. However in the 3 years since, policies like assets sales, GCSB, mining and any other that is an annoyance to them, and is enough for them to commit a removal vote of the Government. Any opposition party that has a policy or 2 that tickles their fancy reaps a soft vote.

                  I predict there are 80,000 to 120,000 in this group.

                  • Disraeli Gladstone

                    I predict that we are all pulling numbers out of thin air and we actually don’t know at all.

                    Though, if we’re going to make numbers appear, I would say that there’s more left-leaning non-voters than right-leaning.

                    • weka

                      You are missing the point I think. We do know that 800,000 people enrolled didn’t vote last time. Labour are going to target the people in that 800,000 who are more likely to vote Labour, and because Labour are better at getting people out to vote than National, even if the 800,000 is evenly split between left and right, this strategy still favours the left.

                      (but I agree that it’s more likely that more people on the left didn’t vote, than the right).

                    • Skinny

                      Yes and Hooton and his elk know like us, that we all have access to the electoral roll, from which we can gather the information of the non voters. Labour can, and is able to target these people and hopefully gather enough votes. Even at a rough guess the left has the potential of picking up 2 out of 3 votes from this group at the next election. This is why Hooton & Co snare at our advantage.

            • Skinny

              Not all of us Hooton subscribe to your first theory. I have spoken to enough people that didn’t vote in the last election due to your second theory Matt. When they were told as little as 10,000 votes was the difference, quite rightly their response was annoyance and embarrassment that they contributed to the win of the current Government. Framing the 10,000 was the difference argument is a far better strategy than the 800,000 one. I will recommend that Labour & the Greens hone in on this fact and budget a fairly high level of their advertising funding to message this in all their campaign material.

              I wait with great anticipation to hear the snake oil you are going to spin on National Radio after 11.00am. Hope Mike Williams does a Bob Reid on you, and launches a well deserved crack at traitor Shane ‘Mockingbird’ Jones.

              • Anne

                I wait with great anticipation to hear the snake oil you are going to spin on National Radio after 11.00am. Hope Mike Williams does a Bob Reid on you, and launches a well deserved crack at traitor Shane ‘Mockingbird’ Jones.

                No, Williams won’t do that. He prefers to stay friends with his former Labour colleagues. I’m not necessarily knocking him for that because it’s the way he is.

                However I will tell you what I bet Hooton will do. He’ll launch an attack on The Standard blog-site… calling commenters here “hard left” and “Shane Jones haters and wreckers” knowing Mike Williams will agree because Mike’s had bad press here in the past and doesn’t like the TS blog site.

                • Anne

                  Ooops, that was a non starter. Hooton wasn’t there. His place was taken by Trish somebody or another. She played the “Labour is in disarray line” and that “Cunliffe is a weak leader.” Williams mildly protested but not enough to make any real impact.

                  • Skinny

                    Anne I think Ryan put Hooton in timeout after hearing he put his boot thru the tv screen after watching Bob Reid make mince meat of the Q&A host and panel. Given Matthews churlish episode on her show last year it’s little wonder she may have chose to play it safe.

            • Olwyn

              Matthew, did you take note of a point made by Puddleglum a few days ago?

              I think you’ll find that in 1999 a Labour-led coalition government with the Alliance party was elected after a ‘truce’ was called between Labour and the left-wing Alliance.

              Conversely, in 2002, Labour’s polling started to head south because (a) the Alliance imploded, and (b) the Green Party ran with Hager’s ‘Seeds of Deception’ findings against Labour.

              In other words, Labour’s polling slid when it’s left-wing partners either had trouble or looked like they were attacking Labour.

              Labour and the working class

              This all suggests that Labour does better, not when it panders to the so-called centre, but when its constituents trust that it will not betray them.

            • felix

              “I’ve done an analysis of turnout in 2008 and 2011 by electorate and the turnout drop was spread across electorates.”

              Suggesting nothing in particular.

              Waffle all you want Matthew, no-one’s listening to you anymore. The fact is that anyone who wants to vote National goes out and votes National.

          • Once was Pete

            No, of course not. They, will fall in to all political groups. There is an assumption that the missing voters are, in the main, Laour/left. I am questioning the validity of that assumption and saying that whilst there may be a skew to the left, it would also be equally reasonable to assume that that there would be a good chunk (who can define how much) that fall into the middle.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              What assumption?

              The point your poor brain is swinging around wildly in the dark hoping to connect with is that Labour will target those non-voters that will vote Labour if they can be persuaded to vote.

              Low IQ predicts for right-wing political beliefs. Just saying.

              • Once was Pete

                Yes, but the question is: are there enough of them? That is why I believe the centre voter can’t be ignored.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  The centre voter whose political opinions you have failed to articulate?

                  Hey everyone, let’s take advice on how to attract United Future supporters from a right wing tr0ll!

                  • Once was Pete

                    You really are a dipstick (see now I have descended to your level of thought)! I am neither a UF supporter or right wing! Your issue is that because people disagree with you you have to bag them.
                    Just for your education, political opinion, like any attitude can be measured in intensity. Researchers do this every day of the week (measure attitudes, that is). Whether you support any one party is a complex process and probably derives from opinions on many topics that combine to give you an overall impression about who appeals to you. Socialisation will play a big part in this. You can also measure the strength of this overall political allegiance. If you were to do it on a 0-10 scale (say Labour – National, or left – right) you could also measure the strength of this allegiance. You would find the centre voters in the 4-6 range.
                    Many voters compromise some of their choices to support a party that gives them the best fit. Some of those compromises might be quite big eg Mana going with Dotcom – should I support this or not? When those compromises become too many voters may ‘swing’. Some voters would go for Labour, but not, say, with the Greens. How many voters did Labour lose with the incredibly stupid ‘shower head fiasco’? Others might go for National, but not with say the Conservatives (just as examples). Some voters just stay away, either because their heart isn’t in it anymore, or because they think the outcome is a foregone conclusion (left and right).
                    Your problem and others like you is that you are so blinded by your own perspective that you just dismiss anything you don’t agree with as ‘trolling’ or being a RWNJ. At the moment Labour is not connected with its entire possible constituency, and for me and others like me the fact that they do not seem to understand this is very disappointing.

        • Skinny

          A little more? I’ve put over 100 on the roll who didn’t vote in last election in the last few months, most of them know who they feel they will vote for and talk about it, some ask an opinion, You ask about their circumstances then assist in what party’s can do what for them. Labour/Greens and a cautionary chat about NZF. Mana I don’t promote as the numbers for the party vote are wasted. The odd ones that like John Key get the truth which usually gets the fuck him then treatment.

          You know the Tories vote it’s the poor that don’t, the stats back that up. Asians are an issue too, but plenty if they did would vote NACT, so best leave that group alone or play spoiler and back up with Nationals GCSB spy laws are aimed at them, ha ha one for Hooton & Shillands.

    • Te Reo Putake 13.3

      If elections were won in the middle, Peter Dunne would be leader of the largest party in the land.

      And Pete George would be Minister of Truth.

    • Paul 13.4

      OWP scrabbling to repeat the mantra his masters told him.

  14. coolas 14

    Reid is spot on about MSM mis-representation. They turned the Shane Jones ‘story’ into woe and misery for Labour, but the real story is McCulley’s abuse of power in making up a job without due process, as if Foreign Affairs is his private fiefdom.

    • Naturesong 14.1

      This. +1000

      How is it that the story this week has not been about McCully misusing his ministerial position to bribe another politician?

      When the story broke, my first thought was;
      “Thats it.
      Those corrupt bastards finally unveiled in a way that the general public cannot miss.”.

      Instead we get a week of “Shane Jones was my bestie” from all and sundry; print, radio, tv ….

      Seriously, WTF???!!!

      • freedom 14.1.1

        For some reason the MSM seem to have a bit of possum’s two moon fever going on, maybe because it is a new position and the shock of National actually creating a job has them all flummoxed.

      • phillip ure 14.1.2

        how could there possibly be life after shane..?..they sobbed in unison..

        ..(did you see gower wiping away a tear..?..who now to go to for for batshit-opinions..?..)

        ..and how his leaving leaves the labour party looking like detroit on a bad day..

        ..whereas really..it’s new orleans..and it’s mardi gra…

        ..and hey..!..what’s that sound..?

        ..it’s the ever-fading cacophony from the jones circus..

        .as it wends its’ way..outta town…


        ..enjoy the zen-lke qualities of yr silent phone..there..mr jones..

      • Paul 14.1.3

        Just a more blatant example of how biased the media are and who they serve.

  15. just saying 15

    At last!!!

    Such a relief to hear my people represented. I get so angry when I hear talk of NZ doing well, of Key’s “centrist” government not undertaking austerity measures etc. etc. etc.

    The economy is said to be fabulous (darlings) and the middle-class arseholes as represented by the media nod their heads (including a few that claim to be from the left). The fact is that the bottom 20 percent (at least) have been ravaged by austerity. The economy is not doing well, it is a bloody disaster. The only way anyone can claim that National is “centrist” and has avoided austerity is to deny the very lives of a huge chunk of the population. We don’t even exist. We are non-people. Our lives are being ravaged but apparently if you aren’t middle-class or upwards what happens to you does not ever have to be taken into account.

    It’s like the sound of a tree falling in a remote forest containing no being that can hear – if it happens to a person designated as non-person can it really be said to be happening at all? Apparently not according to our well-heeled, toady media representatives, including the majority of the comfy and smug so-called left-wing commentators. Apparently the poor need to become better people. Not more resources, hell no Josie, resources are for the deserving. People like you.

    end rant.

    Heart-felt thanks Robert Reid.

    • ianmac 15.1

      And how do those people manage whose wages are so low that it takes both parents to work long hours to make ends meet, and only just. Are they jubilant about books balancing, or news of an improving economy?
      Fair wages! Decent jobs! Affordable housing!
      Go Labour and the Greens and Robert Reid!

    • Skinny 15.2

      Bob Reid decked them!
      Susan Wood froze with your jaw wide open. These idiots fronting these tv shows live in a different reality, I heard Hosking say the same bullshit ‘the economy is booming’ all this crap stemming from the propaganda ‘rockstar economy’. The plug for Labour’s manufacturing policy was outstanding the way Reid quantifies a tick of approval from the business world. We need more of the level playing field coverage. So let his performance be the bar for any leftie fronting on such shows. Get stuck into them and push the message.

      • Paul 15.2.1

        Shows the rest of the Labour Party what can happen if you challenge the narrative.

        • Anne

          +100 Paul.

          I hope the ‘leftie’ corporate lackeys who usually front Q+A have taken note!!

    • Olwyn 15.3

      +1000 JS. It was such a relief to hear that guy speaking, and refusing to play the pre-set game put in front of him. That is what the left is supposed to do – convince the so-called centre, not pander to their fears and prejudices.

    • Matthew Hooton 15.4

      What are the austerity measures Key’s government has taken?
      I thought his finance minister has stimulated the economy considerably over the last five years with borrowing.
      Which is it?

      • phillip ure 15.4.1

        “..What are the austerity measures Key’s government has taken?..”

        ..leaving the poor to rot..?

        ..maintaining/driving the low-wage/high cost of living economy..?

  16. ianmac 16

    What a dreary bunch of blah, blah, blah commentators they have lead by the wooden Woods.

    And Mr Reid reflects the energy arising among the ranks. 10/10. Good for Labour and Greens.
    Why else would National be getting scared?

  17. BM 17

    Reid finished off by refuting Susan Woods’ claim that the economy was going reasonably well. He said that for working people it was a disaster.

    That’s hardly surprising due to the fact that the majority of “working class” jobs are laboring and low skill ones.

    With the push towards mechanization, automation as well as the encouragement to up skill of course it’s been hard going for the “working class”.

    Probably also goes along way in explaining why unionism is a dying all their members are disappearing.

    • mickysavage 17.1

      So BM how do we share around the benefits of automation? Or do we tolerate wealth continuing to be concentrated in the control of the few.

      • RedLogix 17.1.1

        And as life-career automation engineer I too am curious to know if BM has an answer.

        The last thirty years we’ve made huge strides into automating most repetitive, manual or precision mechanical tasks. As a result the remaining workers have become more focused on quality and delivery – doubling, tripling or quadrupling labour productivity in most industries.

        The next thirty years will see the extension of this process into many professional and technical skills. Jobs that people like BM think are safe will change too.

        The bitter disappointment for me personally is the realisation that almost all of the new productivity gains and advances all this technology has given us – has been captured by a tiny minority of uber-wealthy capitalists.

        • BM

          You’d like that comic series Judge Dredd, set around 2100.
          Unemployment runs at around 97% and all jobs are done by robots and because of that every one is paid a leisure allowance.

          Life is also very brutal.

      • BM 17.1.2

        About the only thing you can do is develop new employment sectors.

        Low skilled jobs are going to become a thing of the past, people have to realize that and factor that in when deciding which way they want to go in life.

        It’s going to be an interesting next 50 years to see which way the world goes and how society copes with this issue.

        • mickysavage

          But how do you ensure that the newly generated wealth is shared around BM?

          Or do we have a larger and larger service sector providing the very wealthy with even more and more pampering?

          • BM

            There is certainly quite a bit of growth potential in the service sector.

            The way I look at it the most valuable commodity on earth is your time, for a start it’s finite and you get fuck all of it

            It really does amaze me how little value people put on their own time, they pinch pennies doing all these laborious shitty tasks around the home because they’re too cheap to hire some one.

            Time is short, pay someone to clean those windows or paint that fence or weed that garden, if you can afford to pay some one to do a job and instead you do it yourself, in my eyes your stupid, selfish and keeping New Zealanders out of work.
            Go fishing,spend time having fun, let some one else do those tasks.

            The young ones are really getting the hang of it but the older ones in our population are struggling with the concept.

            Time for a change in attitude oldies, you’re the ones with the spare coin, open those wallets and help the economy.

            • felix

              But how do you ensure that the newly generated wealth is shared around BM?

      • Skinny 17.1.3

        Well I will jump in here Micky.

        Bin the 67 retirement age policy that somehow got rammed through.
        Flatly reject signing up to the multi nationals corporates TTPA. Which is bloody bad news.
        Start pushing a universal income by dealing to the wealthy bottom feeders using a restructured progressive tax system, and other claw backs like Public & State sector CEO’s obscene income packages.

    • Tiger Mountain 17.2

      Firstly BM there are over 350,000 people who voluntarily and enthusiastically belong to Unions despite the “90 day fire at will”, tory anti worker legislation, running down of state sector and offshore procurement policies (eg. rail stock from China).

      Secondly the working class is still significantly large if you apply certain measures such as actual business ownership (rather than every lawn mowing contractor thinking they are a boss), dependent contracting, precarious employment and internships.

      • second thoughts 17.2.1

        what crap – only 6% in the private sector belong to unions..the other 11% are in government departments Nurses, teachers and PSA.

        Thats means 83% have voted and said no to unions

        • Skinny

          Industry standards will fuck the likes of you off wingnut. Unions set the rates through collective agreements which non member pigback off. I use to call it free loading, however got to cut some slack to the generational gap.

          While I am addressing you wingnut there is a stark statistic that is with the drop in union membership there is a huge rise in the poverty gap, you know ‘INEQUALITY’.

          ‘United we stand divided we beg’, never rang truer.

          • Second Thoughts

            Who said I was wingnut?

            The facts are that 350,000 are union members but when you break it down only 17% of the workforce belong to the unions and 11% of the unions members are government employees. Tell me that is not a government that discriminates t its own staff. I would call that very supportive.

            If the 83% have said no they have said “no”. Remember Helen Clarke had EVERY OPPORTUNITY to make unions membership compulsory and DID NOT: Why is that even the current government fault when I was served up to her on a plate to make the change FAIL.
            As for inequality – once again all indicators suggest a overall happy place for NZ’ers to live in and immigration is heading north not south.

            I will tell you one thing though – unions are bang on re Health and safety debate..I hope they keep it up. The rest – well I think people are missing some very good micro economics that are going on. If the crime rates keep dropping that will mean less families in poverty because dad will be at home. I reckon that is 10% of the problem solved. Historical data shows a society will always need to look after 10% of their population which all of us don’t mind. So that leaves 80% of this so call poverty group. I think sensible people would agree 15% of that group (I mean the parents) could just do better themselves. Down to 65% left.

            Would an average pay rise of 25% solve the issue – probably not. I am guessing and it is a guess 70% of the 65% live in Auckland.

            Solve the Auckland problem by getting an effective Mayor who can focus on the issues will be a great start. Housing – even the left has to agree, the problem is supply – increase the supply. Interest rates – yes anything over 7% is unacceptable. Single parent families – focus on this and make DPB harder to get not eaiser – there are genuine cases I agree support them fully – but work on domestic violence and teenage pregnancy – this is a huge huge steo forward and make fathers PAY! Have the left got the appetite to say – NO more – anyone that doesn’t take responsibility for their actions – then the government s going to make you pay. Why burden me – family man, 2 kids and a mortgage and make me feel guilty,

            If we could drop the DPB by half going forward taxes could drop – there is a big start. Then I would make the companies pay their full whack of tax.

            Just pisses me off that you all blame National when Labour had EVERY OPPORTUNITY to put these things in place! Too worried about “civil union” bill

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Labour failed to implement a bunch of knee-jerk right-wing reactionary blunders that would have made matters worse. We know your incompetent notions would make things worse from the evidence gathered from every other place in the world that has entertained this sort of drivel as a substitute for intelligent policy making.

              We need better wingnuts.

              • Once was Tim

                there was a big clue when he said “going forward”.
                …… lingo. ideology and spin learned rote.
                “learnings” for us all

  18. quartz 18

    Fuck he showed them up as the smug know-nothing elites they are.

  19. newsense 19

    Respect. More please. This is a representative of the left. Someone who doesn’t say- oh you are so right Labour is terrible and the left is woeful etc etc.

    • Paul 19.1

      Yup like his repeated comments about the myth the media are spinning.
      Made Millar and Wood look like idiots as it’s people like them that spreading the myth.
      As for that ACT Coddington ( funny how that detail never gets mentioned?), she was clearly rattled as she tried to say Labour was divided, mentioning Damian O’Connor and his gaggle of gays comment. She’ll read to read her spew oil lines a bit better.
      Forthright, clear and not deflected by the narrative the other panellists were trying to describe.

      Let’s do the same on this site and not play the games srylands and his lot want us to.

  20. karol 20

    I watched the video. Geez! I was about ready to scream at the screen while Woods, Coddington and that other guy were talking. So smug and locked up in their own world. iI refrained from screaming ebcause the neighbours would probably think I was having a breakdown, or being attacked.

    Labour fragile? let’s not forget that Clark had to work hard after she became Labour Party leader, to get positive representation in the media.

    In contrast, the media kept saying how great Key was from even before he became leader… and they kept it up for years – still only have a few critical comments about him.

    Labour is not fragile, they just have to work with a largely hostile MSM.

    So great to see Reid telling them how it is.

  21. Anne 21

    Yep. I was ready to burst into tears of sheer frustration and along came Robert Reid to save the day.

    He must be used by Labour and the Greens to front them in a commentating role as often as is possible! But I bet he will never be asked back on Q+A again. These TV media types hate been shown up. Many years ago I worked with their predecessors and nothing has changed.

    • Rodel 21.1

      My sentiments exactly. What a breath of fresh air Reid is. How can we encourage / demand that his voice is heard again on TV?
      I think a series of confrontational and passionate interviews with Reid should be part of Labour’s election campaign. ( Maybe Hooton or Brash interviewing Reid- Brash would probably agree frankly if the price was right)

      • karol 21.1.1

        And, while people are about it, how can we get Susan Wood off our screens? I find her pretty much unwatchable – really puts me off watching Qu & A.

    • Anne 21.2

      ooops – should be… being shown up.

  22. Lionel 22

    You are right about Wood she lives on Paraitai Drive sums her up she just another Tory bitch like Hosking,Henry,Larry Williams etc all got their heads up their arses no credibility at all

  23. blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 23

    Gee, I just saw the late version of that programme. What a great person that Mr Reid is to actually getting that message out there – I agreed with all he expressed.

    If that Q&A keep him on, I will consider it worth watching.
    (I hope those of you who suffer the programme will give those of us who don’t some hints when someone good like that Mr Reid is on.)

    The twitter comments were rather funny. Most pretty undeniably scathing about Jones and/or National. Funny, because as the media would have it, such views don’t exist…then they start rolling across the screen!

    Thanks Karol and co for the heads up…and Mr Reid for speaking out for those who are suffering.

    • blue leopard 23.1

      Apologies to Mickey Savage – I erroneously thought Karol had written this post when I wrote the above – thanks for the heads up.

  24. vto 24

    Yes Mr Micky, Mr Reid did very well. Labour should keep going and doing what it is currently doing, while at the same time ramping some attack on the Korrupt Key Klan.

    Cunliffe would also have done well to have got stuck into Shane Jones for his treachery and selfishness. Labour is significantly hugelier bigger than Jones and would come out on top. Link Jones to the Korrupt Key Klan, attack him, call him out for the tosser he is (perhaps compare him to that other tosser Tau Henare), and then just completely ignore him when he can’t resist the retaliation that would follow …..

    Cunliffe needs to be a bit bolder and stand up to the bullies and clowns.

    • karol 24.1

      When MPs criticise the media, the media turns strongly against them. it’s easier for others to criticise the MSM.

  25. Loved seeing this last night, breath of fresh air. More please.

  26. fisiani 26

    Had to laugh at Reid convinced that the missing voters were those who felt no party was left enough for them to vote for. What absolute tosh and no doubt explains the recent brain explosions led by Matt McCarten’s war room. Most of the missing voters were National supporters who felt it was a done deal.

    • Skinny 26.1

      Now now wingnut tell the truth? All was going well for you sitting in Y-fronts, guts hanging out belching & farting in your lazi-boy chair, the usual bullshit narrative until Bob sprayed all over Wood and your snake oil spinning mates. Bet you fell out your chair flat on your arse reaching for the remote lol.

  27. Whatever next? 27

    What a relief to watch someone refuse to fall into the usual “banter” and simply keeping it real by ignoring the familiar patronising, inane put downs.Good man.

  28. hoom 28

    Late to the point but hell yeah that was great 🙂

    Hilarious seeing the righties jaw agape at the audacity that a ‘left’ commentator didn’t just agree with whatever they say ie someone who is not Trotter, Pagani or Williams…

    Unfortunately almost guaranteed to mean we never see or hear him on mainstream media again 🙁

    Which is a shame because he absolutely represented my leftist view which is nice to see for a change.

  29. Paul Williams 29

    FWIW, I’ve not read the comments on this thread but did want to respond to mickeysavage’s post by simply by saying I agree, Reid was a clear, effective and authentic advocate for a vital constituency.

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    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    5 days ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    5 days ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    5 days ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    6 days ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    6 days ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    6 days ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    6 days ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    6 days ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    7 days ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 week ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    1 week ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    1 week ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    1 week ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago

  • Communities step up to help New Zealanders stay connected and fed during lockdown
    Communities stepping up to help New Zealanders stay at home to break the transmission of COVID-19 and save lives have received Government support, said Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni. “Delivering groceries for the elderly who can’t shop online, providing data packs for low income families to keep them connected, and being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 hour ago
  • 120 COVID-19 testing centres now operating
    Across New Zealand 120 sites are taking samples to be tested for COVID-19.   68 community based assessment centres (CBACs) have been established to take samples from people with COVID-19 symptoms. Alongside this, 52 other centres including designated general practices, swabbing centres, and mobile clinics are now testing people for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Covid19: Government moving quickly to roll out learning from home
    The Ministry of Education is working with partners to develop a package of options so that students can learn at home when Term 2 begins on 15 April, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Supports are also being prepared for households with children under five, to help parents and whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Making learning from home accessible to Māori learners and whānau
    Māori Television to begin educational te reo programmes Ki te Ao Mārama – a new online learning space Thousands of hard copy learning packs ready for distribution Helpdesk and advice service for kōhanga, kura and wharekura Television, the internet and hard copy learning packs are some of the ways whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • New Zealand to provide assistance to Vanuatu following Tropical Cyclone Harold
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced an initial package of support to help the people and the Government of Vanuatu respond to the impact of Tropical Cyclone Harold. “Our Pacific neighbours have been hit by a Category 5 Cyclone at the same time as dealing with the economic impacts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Planning for the future of tourism
    Tourism New Zealand to lead work reimagining the way tourism operates in post-COVID-19 world. Ministers to review International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy investment plan. The Government, industry and business are working together to develop a plan for how tourism will operate in a post-COVID-19 world, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
    More New Zealanders are taking up the chance to work in horticulture as the sector keeps New Zealanders fed and in jobs during the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 lockdown. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
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    6 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
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    1 week ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
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    2 weeks ago