web analytics

War and peace

Written By: - Date published: 8:05 am, November 19th, 2012 - 93 comments
Categories: democratic participation, labour - Tags:

Talk of a Labour leadership vote to be held this Tuesday blossomed and then faded on Sunday as we went from escalating tension to peace suddenly breaking out. Here’s what went down.

The Mallard-led old guard – having already run a failed attempt at making the democratic model of leader election a charade by setting an impossibly high bar to spark a vote – thought they had found a procedural trick to embarrass Cunliffe. They could have an caucus-only vote under the old rules, which would require 60% opposition to Shearer to succeed. Shearer would win and Cunliffe would be fatally damaged before any full leadership vote involving the party, and they could use the vote as an excuse to demote Cunliffe. But then they realised that:

a) there’s no alternative to Shearer on the table, so there’s no call for a vote, and just because no-one chooses to stand up this time doesn’t mean that they can’t later. Cunliffe refused to come out to be beaten up by them in a rigged game.

b) principled MPs might stymie this blatant attempt to thwart the will of the members to have a say in the leadership and those MPs might vote to give the membership its say. It would only have taken a few MPs to turn in disgust from the old guard’s behaviour for Shearer’s leadership to collapse spectacularly in a crisis of their own making.

and c) such a move would rightly be seen as another kick in the face for Labour’s membership, which would have no legitimacy and just further entrench the memberships’ anger towards the old guard that backs Shearer… with bad consequences. Demoting the membership’s preferred leader would be a huge mistake given some of Shearer’s backers are already struggling to get support from their LECs for a 2014 candidacy.

If there is a leadership motion this week under the old rules, I expect that Cunliffe and his supporters will turn it into a nullity by voting for Shearer on the grounds that any leadership votes from now on should be under the new rules. [Update: as predicted, Cunliffe has said he will support Shearer if there is a vote this week or next]

It’s important to remember that Cunliffe hasn’t launched any coup and all this talk from Mallard and co of Cunliffe destabilising Shearer is rubbish. The membership voted itself a greater say, not Cunliffe. There has been nothing that Cunliffe has done that can be reasonably construed as an attack on the stability of the party. All he has done is left open the possibility of a challenge at the anointed time next year but that’s only fair given Shearer’s weak performance to date (one good turn in front of the autocue notwithstanding).

All this malice towards Cunliffe simply isn’t justified. He has done a bloody good job as Economic Development spokesperson (eg the manufacturing inquiry); he only did his duty as delegate, along with a majority of others, in supporting democracy in the Labour Party; and he has launched no coup or otherwise sought to undermine Shearer.

If anyone is trying to exploit the situation of the members voting for democracy, it’s the old guard trying to beat it up as a story of disloyalty to, in Mallard’s words, ‘head Cunliffe off at the pass’ rather than wait until the proper time and, if there is a challenge, let the members have their say. And the old guard are just a small minority in the party. The problem for them is, they know it.

Let’s hope that they now realise that their best interests, along with Labour’s and the Left’s lie in them turning their guns off Cunliffe and on to National for the next three months.

93 comments on “War and peace”

  1. Agreed entirely.

    Yesterday I thought that Shearer had done a really good job, given a good speech and I hoped that he would continue in his improved performance.  His leadership would then be assured and we could all work towards electing a progressive government.

    He has just blown all of my good will by suggesting on Radio New Zealand that Cunliffe will be disciplined.

    I mean what is he on?

    What has Cunliffe done?  Is reserving your right to engage in a constitutional process something to be disciplined for?

    Shearer should show real leadership by laughing it off, saying he is looking forward to the February confirmation and that he intends to seek the new process’s endorsement.  If he keeps performing he will have my support.  This macho crap is not helpful.

    BTW Shearer still needs to perform better in interviews.  This latest one was pretty messy.

    • Jim Nald - Once Was National 1.1

      The weekend demonstrated the progressive values and modernisation of the Labour Party, and Shearer should emphasise and leverage off that.

      Shearer delivered his speech well, Robertson damned the Natz cabinet with great humour, Cunliffe pledges support, and the membership is happy.

      Shearer and his deputy need to be careful they do not play into the hands of Natz and Natz-leaning media beat-up, and dig a hole for the whole of the Labour Party in the process.

    • geoff 1.2

      Yep agreed, good comment.

    • The sprout 1.3

      Totally agree ms, Shearer looked for a moment like he might finally step up to the mark – only to fuck it up yet again with all this ABC bullshit and his little ‘i am the leader, i’ll make the decisions’ brain fart.

      If there is one defining characteristic of Shearer that emerges again and again, its the uncanny ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

  2. Fred 2

    Shearer’s been ill-advised throughout. Goff, Mallard, King – none of them seriously expect to be ministers after 2014, so they’ve got little riding on whether Labour can form a government. More important to them is their personal dislike for Cunliffe.

    Mallard is a millennialist, he loves the big confrontation – that’s what he tried to pull here and he has been deftly out-maneuvered.

    “Shearer still needs to perform better in interviews. This latest one was pretty messy” – yup. It look his leadership being in mortal danger and a week of practice to pull off well a pre-written speech. The problem remains that he is bad off the cuff, which means he’ll get slaughtered if he is allowed to debate Key before the election.

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    Man the personal insecurity and fear running around here is batshit crazy. There are no leadership challengers coming forwards – so we are going to make one up ourselves, out of the shadows!

    The February vote is constitutionally enshrined in the Labour rules, it is a regular scheduled vote, it happens in the mid term of every electoral cycle (although this one coming up will be the last one as the constitution has now been amended).

  4. ad 4

    So first off I just want to offer a humble apology to Lynn, after writing that this site has a hivemind. May the debate reign.

    Just a little surprised that Shearer is actually proposing to expel him from the caucus, on the media this morning.

    This is not like Jim Anderton actually walking from the Labour Party in the late 1980s to form the Alliance.

    It’s also not like the expulsion of John Tamihere.

    Unfortunately it’s at least as big as Anderton’s departure in scale and impact.

    This is the leader of the Labour Party taking the entire constutitional process Labour went through on the weekend and screwing it up like paper and throwing it in the bin. I just wonder how the membership on this site will react?

    Perhaps it’s going to take the wholesale removal of a core of the caucus to realise that the membership now have a constitutional right to have a say in most of the way they operate. Perhaps some really are just too set in their ways.

    When the Membership and affiliates and caucus meet and form policy, that policy is now binding.

    When the membership and affiliates and caucus meet and form rules about agreeing to a leader, that policy is now binding.

    So all the quoted MPs who have got themselves in a lather in the last 12 hours – Curran, Little, O’Connor, Goff, and Shearer – really need to grow used to sunlight shining through their caucus doors.

    Clearly this is a major emotional upheaval for them. It’s deeply ugly to watch.

    I hope Cunliffe is not an irredeemably terminal political victim of it. Looks like that’s what caucus leadership is aiming for.

    [lprent: A better grade of stirring post ban. But I suspect you are talking about Cunliffe rather than me. And the Labour caucus can’t expel anyone from the Labour party. Perhaps I should extend my offer to Cactus Kate to send a copy of the Labour party constitution to you. If might improve your spin. ]

    • ad 4.1

      Ah, yes forgot to name the actual person commenting on after apologising.

      Much appreciate the offer, but I think my head actually exploded like the martians on Mars Attacks as Slim Dusty played “I Remember Yo-uuuuuuuuuuu” on the weekend reading that stuff as the debates were going through. I’ll pop my copy on the shelf for another year.

  5. Tom Gould 5

    So, what you are saying is that Cunliffe cannot win under the current rules, but he can win under the electoral college system with 40% of the votes being cast by a handful of union officials casting aggregated votes? He only needs 10% of the Caucus plus the rotten borough votes, plus one, to win the leadership, even if he failed to get a single genuine party member vote. So his constituency is 4 Caucus members and a dozen or so union heavyweights, maybe 20 people? And this it touted as “democracy”?

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Meh the Feb vote is just a trigger. If the trigger is pulled then it goes to ALL the party members.

      THAT is democracy 🙂

      • David H 5.1.1

        And thats a reason to become a member again. Finally we will not be ignored.

      • Tom Gould 5.1.2

        Are you saying that the actual leadership vote, once triggered, does not include the aggregated votes cast by union heavyweights? If not, then I am correct, right? The ordinary party members are in the minority, and even if they ALL vote for one candidate, they can be beaten?

        • alex 5.1.2.1

          Try to think of the internally democratic nature or otherwise of parties as a continuum, Labour has still not reached where the Greens are at, but they are a hell of a lot more internally democratic after these reforms than, say, National.

    • Craig Glen Eden 5.2

      No ones saying what you are spinning Tom Gould except you and what your spinning is factually wrong.

    • Lanthanide 5.3

      Tom, it goes like this:
      In Feb, 13-14 people (some 40% of caucus) can vote against Shearer and ask for it to be put to a wider vote.

      At that point, an electoral college is formed where:
      40% of votes come from caucus
      40% of votes come from members
      20% of votes come from affiliates/unions

      I thought this was pretty straightforward, but obviously not.

  6. Craig Glen Eden 6

    The Nuclear Sky is falling all right and Shearer looks less and less the moderate Mr nice guy who has strongly held social justice blood running through his veins.Perhaps he is suffering a little post Traumatic stress syndrome from that UN work.

  7. Anne 7

    It was the most extraordinary beat-up over nothing that I have ever witnessed.

    Does Shearer not appreciate he is being treated with contempt by some of his own caucus supporters? Like mickysavage, I was delighted with his speech yesterday. He had an audience of some 700 members eating out of his hand. What we didn’t know about was… the shenanagens apparently going on behind the scenes.

    He must step back and look at exactly what happened before he takes any action. As was pointed out by several speakers on the conference floor:

    Since the 1980s members and affiliates have been largely left out of the decision making processes inside the Party. Time and again our concerns were ignored… and so the frustration slowly began to build. Finally it spilled over on Saturday and we voted – as one delegate put it – to reclaim our Party.

    This attempt to blame it on Cunliffe as if he was somehow responsible for what happened is the most appalling display of petulance and sour grapes I have ever witnessed.

    The traitor is not Cunliffe. It’s a small handful of Caucus members who can’t get over themselves, and the power they want to continue to wield over the rest of us.

    • Craig Glen Eden 7.1

      +1 Anne

    • Rhinocrates 7.4

      +3.14159265358979323846…

    • ianmac 7.5

      +3 (I have to check the blog name to make sure I am not on a National Party Blog.)

    • Colonial Viper 7.6

      +4 Anne…gawd Rhino, this is no time to bring up irrationalities 😉

      • Jilly Bee 7.6.1

        +5 Anne. I had almost started to feel proud about being a member after Saturday (I wasn’t able to attend, but kept regularly updated with Twitter and The Standard. I first joined in 1967 – I will certainly put my card through the shredder if this stupidity carries on – in fact I will drive over to Phil Twyford’s Henderson office and do it there. Apparently David Cunliffe is the Waitakere buddy MP and it would sort of defeat my purpose if I was to go to his New Lynn office.

        • Anne 7.6.1.1

          The crying shame Jilly Bee, Shearer gave such a good speech. Everyone left the conference feeling happy and uplifted. Then I turned on the TV news at 6pm and couldn’t believe what I was seeing and hearing. If this nonsense continues I will also be shredding my membership card.

          • seeker 7.6.1.1.1

            @Jilly Bee and Anne
            Was feeling the same until I heard rumblings today followed by ‘caucus leadership vote ‘while I was on the phone to NZPC about John Armstrong’s smear on David Cunliffe being highlit on the Herald on line today. Now I’m agreeing with DH below. I can’t believe David Shearer et al could behave like this. This is not the behaviour of a leader -to be run by the media and then go running to mummy caucus and hide behind her skirts while she tells him what to do as well. He should be standing up for Cunliffe, one of the best men on his frontbench (what will he, or us, do, without him?) and getting on with the job of leading Labour against this “National Scourge.”. Cunliffe has been nothing but loyal to Shearer and the party and the electorate. How disloyal is Shearer and some of the party by undermining and discrediting the best man they have?

            I now feel a rather low opinion coming on about the NZ Labour party. Not only has the caucus’ poor choice of leader led to this appalling mess- it is just what our people living in poverty and despair don’t need. Shame on you Shearer and co. John Armstong’s description of “naked ambition” today may well apply to you..

            • karol 7.6.1.1.1.1

              I love how the same language keeps getting circulated!

              “Naked ambition” was the term Gower used to describe Cunliffe last night. 

              • seeker

                Exactly Karol, and ghastly Garner and Chris Hipkins were using similar lines and sentiments as Member41 @ comment 19 below. I commented on this horror at 19.2.

                TVNZ are just saying that all 33 Labour MPs are being summoned to Wellington tomorrow for a vote/show of confidence in Shearer and that this is because of the possible interperetation of some of David Cunliffes comments on the weekend-which doesn’t sound so cut and dried as Garner and Hipkins

                NB. Haven’t quoted TVNZ accurately- just it’s ’roundup of headlines’ sentiment.

                Can’t believe this idiocy is happening!!!

    • prism 7.7

      On Radionz this a.m.when questioned about the leadership issue Shearer came across as personally hurt and resentful, and authoritarian.

      Leaders have to have an ego for sure, but more than the burning desire to be The Leader, there must be a burning desire to carry forward Labour vision to successful outcomes, ie good for all people, enterprise and the country in every sector. Grizzling that discussion as to Shearer’s leadership is a sideshow doesn’t make the main show seem very dynamic and capable.

      It’s just as well that there are some strong-minded outsiders who can step out of the groupthink. They are needed to unemotionally evaluate the situation now and discuss the likely outcomes of various Labour directions so they can go beyond just following the status quo.

      One good policy that is needed in a blindingly obvious way doesn’t constitute enough substance behind the Labour cohort to raise confuidence that they will surge forward and win, and then be able to deliver good policies that raise our failing country. They need to be idealistic in policy aims tempered with innovative, pragmatic, practical action followed by thorough assessment of their outcomes.

      It was interesting to hear Damien O’Connor this morning who was questioned on the issue after a discussion on another issue he has done good work on. interest swaps for farmers. His approach was from the loyalty and hope side for Shearer. Great leader and going forward will lead Labour to victory sort of thing.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.9

      Time and again our concerns were ignored… and so the frustration slowly began to build. Finally it spilled over on Saturday and we voted – as one delegate put it – to reclaim our Party.

      I think that process is true of all societies that wind up with dictators at the top that just don’t listen/are disconnected from the reality of the majority.

    • Olwyn 7.10

      +100

  8. One speech,practiced over and over,behind curtains and in a darkend room,does not make the man.
    Those career politicians adding fuel to the fire should just get off the bus and stop stiring the pot.
    Shonkey will be quite happy because if Shearer stays then there is no effective opposition.
    Congratulations to all the members who were at the conference, you have done us proud.

    • just saying 8.1

      should just get off the bus and stop stiring the pot

      I love a well mixed metaphor.
      Nice picture of Mallard, Goff and King struggling down the steps of a number nine bus lugging a bubbling cauldron between them…

      • Tim G. 8.1.1

        no, JS, they left the bubbling cauldron on the bus for one of the underpaid/overworked drivers to clean up 😉

  9. tc 9

    Nice work undone by DS on RNZ this morning allowing all the NACT MSM lackeys to keep this alive while shonkey flogs off some more of our kids heritage.

    He’s still being led by the has beens not leading so I can’t see any significant change coming.

  10. Colonial Viper 11

    I like Patrick Gower for his optimism. LOL

    So there you have it. That’s how the numbers stack up as of now.

    (Labour) MPs who want to change camps on this list are welcome to contact the 3 News political office.

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Opinion-Shearer-vs-Cunliffe–how-the-numbers-stack-up/tabid/1382/articleID/277204/Default.aspx?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+co%2FEoAG+%283News+-+Political+News%29

  11. gobsmacked 12

    Hipkins on 3 News, and then One News, midday:

    Not anonymous. Speaking to camera. Clearly orchestrated. He’s the Whip.

    Says Cunliffe has worked to destabilise the leader, and the previous leader.

    Must support the leader or …

    “it’s time for him to find something else to do”. (direct quote)

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      😯

    • fatty 12.2

      Chris Hipkins needs to give an example of that occurring. I am surprised something so stupid would come out of his mouth…its actually comments against Cunliffe that are destabilising Labour at the moment.
      I thought Hipkins was better than that…maybe its time Hipkins found something better to do.

      • The sprout 12.2.1

        If Hipkins and his masters carry on this sort of bullshit they are going to buy a nuclear winter shit fight.
        You think the party’s unstable now Chris? You haven’t seen anything yet, but carry on like this and you’ll be looking for a new job sooner than you might have been led to believe.

    • weka 12.3

      What things did Cunlifffe do to destabilise the leader?

      • Anne 12.3.1

        We don’t know weka. We just keep being told he has. Strange thing, nobody has actually seen it.

        There’s vindictive stuff about Cunliffe emanating from the Caucus ABC club, but I’ve heard nothing nasty about Shearer coming from the Caucus Cunliffe club. Strange indeed.

        • weka 12.3.1.1

          That’s what I thought. And no-one who has posted here that was at the conference has said they saw evidence of Cunliffe organising a coup.

          • Colonial Viper 12.3.1.1.1

            He was a good bastard and bought a few rounds of drinks for people. Maybe the types who missed out got jealous?

          • Member41 12.3.1.1.2

            Well I was at Conference and it was pretty bloody obvious to me.

            Everybody in Caucus understands the game Cunliffe is playing. They are not making it up. And they are tired of it. It’s about time they started showing a backbone in the face of such blatant disloyalty. Cunliffe is costing us too much. I would prefer he stayed but he can’t if he can’t be a part of a team.

            • Colonial Viper 12.3.1.1.2.1

              lol a political commissar

            • weka 12.3.1.1.2.2

              “Well I was at Conference and it was pretty bloody obvious to me.”
               
              Will you tell us? I wasn’t there and I’m not a Labour insider, so I am just going off what people who were there report and what’s in the media. I’ve yet to see a single example of behaviour that counts as Cunliffe organising a coup. Just give four examples so we know what you are talking about.

  12. Santi 13

    I’m delighted to know the dynamic, eloquent and articulate David Shearer is (and will be until the election) the leader of the Labour Party. Hail to the chief!

  13. bomber 14

    This is becoming crazy now

    BREAKING NEWS: Shearer to expel Cunliffe? UPDATE: – http://tumeke.blogspot.co.nz/2012/11/breaking-news-shearer-to-expel-cunliffe.html

    • toad 14.1

      The Green Party’s membership application form is linked here!

      • lprent 14.1.1

        Which reminds me. When do the Greens have their next conference? Who do I talk to about media access. My e-mail is lprent at primary.geek.nz

        • George D 14.1.1.1

          AGMs are mid-year, summer policy conferences are usually early Feb. Both are highly democratic (but not perfectly so, there’s always some loss). The AGM is your better bet, and I don’t think the province has been sorted for 2013 yet; then it’s a matter of contacting the provincial executive.

          • lprent 14.1.1.1.1

            Cool. I’ll organise that. National and NZ First will be interesting. Despite my time constraints I think I’ll go to Mana’s as well since we have have many enthusiasts fervent supporters here.

      • starlight 14.1.2

        Lol,got to get our own house in order before we join theirs,:)

        • David H 14.1.2.1

          Why bother Labour can fucking implode for all I care now.

          • seeker 14.1.2.1.1

            +1

          • Colonial Viper 14.1.2.1.2

            Nah mate, please you gotta stay with Labour, if you’re not signed up sign up now, sign everyone up you can. We finally have the tools in the constitution to take back the heart and soul of the party. Its gonna be frakin good.

    • Rhinocrates 14.2

      I can imagine tomorrow’s headline:

      Shearer to Expel Party From Party

      “A senior MP has informed this reporter that David Shearer intends to expel the Labour Party from itself for voting for greater democracy and refusing to respect his authoritah…”

      I used to think of him as the pointy-haired boss, now he’s turning into Eric Cartman.

    • starlight 14.3

      Hope this ain’t true Bomber,the grassroots,members,voted for democracy,Shearer’s
      actions will be in defiance of that,for god sake the man is a liability for the labour party,end of.

    • lprent 14.4

      I’ll have a look at the feed issue tonight. It is failing to display the RSS it has collected at the back end. Annoying. It performed well over the weekend.

  14. gobsmacked 15

    Cunliffe is, of course, an electorate MP. So he doesn’t have to go anywhere (list MPs don’t have to either, under the rules, but realistically they can’t win a seat so they usually go).

    As an independent MP he would win his electorate. As a backbench MP, ditto. Presumably the ABC crowd are relying on him quitting Parliament, for good.

  15. gobsmacked 16

    UPDATE:

    Shearer has called an urgent caucus meeting for tomorrow afternoon to call for endorsement of his leadership. (Sources: Radio Live, etc … will link shortly).

  16. John Chapman 17

    Just received the following from Labour’s press office:

    19 November 2012 MEDIA STATEMENT

    Labour Leader calls caucus meeting

    Labour Leader David Shearer has called his caucus to a meeting in Wellington at 4pm tomorrow.

    “I will be seeking the endorsement of my colleagues for the Labour leadership.

    “The endorsement I’m seeking will be in line with the decision made by Labour Party members at this weekend’s conference that I must have at least 60% support of the caucus.

    “A formal endorsement vote will also still be held in February in accordance with the new rules approved by Party members.

    “I’m holding this vote tomorrow to demonstrate that I have the support of my caucus and to put recent speculation to bed.

    “It is important that these matters are resolved so that Labour can lift its sights to focus on the serious challenges facing the country, including jobs, education and housing affordability,” said David Shearer.

  17. David H 18

    But what are you going to do when you have the two resident clowns Garner and Gower the bad comedy act. They are the ones shit stirring and doing Mallards bidding. And Mallard needs to go as well!

  18. Member41 19

    You guys need to go away.

    After that Conference the membership are behind David Shearer. He led the democratisation and reform of the Party. They are great changes that the whole Conference endorsed. We have the basis of a strong progressive policy platform and Shearer will take it to NZ in 2014. He proved he could do that in his speech.

    Cunliffe has undermined the party long enough. He’s been doing it for ages, but we finally understood how toxic he is this weekend. He has been given plenty of chances and it’s time for him to realise that this is about teamwork and not about his individual ambition. He can’t lead us. He should get behind Shearer or leave.

    [lprent: Letting this one through under advisement. But I am deeply suspicious. It reads like an opportunistic astroturf. We will see if it can argue rather than just barf slogans.

    Update: Ok, it looks like Member41 is human enough. Warning rescinded. ]

    • OK Member41 stop using the royal We and speak for yourself, and let the others speak for themselves as well.

      If you are buying into the crap that the media are selling then you must be 1 of the ones that created it in the first place!.

      • Member41 19.1.1

        By “we” I mean the members of the Labour Party that have had enough of Cunliffe’s self-serving white anting. And our numbers just about doubled this Conference.

        I am a left-wing member of the LP who wants to get out and defend the progressive policies we endorsed at Conference and more.

        • PlanetOrphan 19.1.1.1

          Well in that case I think you are mis-reading Cunliffe today, I can’t speak for his past, but an ally in progressing civilised policies should be a bonus surely?

        • Jim Nald - Once Was National 19.1.1.2

          Hey Member41,

          Mmm … you don’t sound that authentic or sincere there … you are verging on overdoing and over-egging the false pudding you want to serve up.

          “He led the democratisation and reform of the Party”

          – Really? How? What did he do? Please elaborate some more. And btw did he vote, and if so, for what position? And if not, how robust was his excuse and can it stand up to strong scrutiny?

          “defend the progressive policies we endorsed at Conference and more”

          – more what?

          • Member41 19.1.1.2.1

            The Labour Party reform process was led by Shearer and Coatsworth. They both deserve enormous credit for getting it through successfully. Don’t think that is overstating it at all.

            “And more” wasn’t very eloquent. I meant that I want to go out and defend our progressive policy, including what we endorsed at Conference. And that we should do more of that at the next Conference.

    • seeker 19.2

      Seems to be the same lines Garner and Chris Hipkins were using on TV3 news a moment ago, with Garner adding that the caucus would be looking to see how to punish and demote Cunliffe as far as possible tomorrow (almost rubbing his hands in gleeful anticipation).TVNZ is reporting that David Cunliffe has said he has done nothing and has no idea why he is to be “punished”. I am so with Cunliffe.

      This is beginning to sound as unfair and “courtier” manipulative as a Tudor court in the days of HenryV111!

      • Member41 19.2.1

        Political parties require unity. Labour’s values include solidarity.

        Cunliffe undermined Goff for three years and he is at it again with Shearer. Patience eventually wears thin.

  19. Jane 20

    WTF? How is it that the day after the conference there is this disaster?? Have just seen the news, leadership vote tomorrow, Cunliffe being demoted?? Very disturb that the caucus couldn’t get together and decide to put everything aside and take the best free media plug they have had in ages. One ten second quote on some vague sounding housing thing, instead of pictures of builders and young families excited at the prospect of a house we get a rant from DC. Pathetic.

    • Member41 20.1

      Jane I can see how it might appear that way.

      The reality is that the leadership have been very patient with Cunliffe. They have wanted him to be a key part of the economic team. He’s got talent and he could have been great. But he spent three years undermining Goff and now he is at it again. Basically people have realised that it can’t go on any longer if we are going to be able to put up a unified platform to the electorate.

      If they don’t punish this brazen disloyalty – Labour is doomed.

      • Mike 20.1.1

        Can you please explain to me and others how Cunliffe is being so disloyal and how he is undermining the labour party? I only ask because I haven’t heard him say anything that would support this, but I’m not a Labour insider as you appear to be so there is obviously some info on Cunliffe that is not widely available?

  20. Prickly Jill 21

    I was at the Conference and at the affiliates meeting before. The affiliates leadership was supporting the Council position on a 50%+1 threshold to send the vote on the leadership to the wider membership.
    Then one after another, rank and file union members stood up and argued that the members should have a say in who is to be their leader, not just now, but always. It was about Constitutional change to fully participate in their Party — not just to deliver leaflets and knock on doors, but to have a genuine say. There was no mention of a leadership struggle, there were no ulterior motives, there was no manipulation.
    Each union delegation caucused and the members decided that if a leader could command 60% or more support from his/her Caucus, then that’s great. If not, the Labour Party members and affiliate members would get to vote.
    On the Conference floor, speakers to the 60% spoke about grassroots democracy. It was principled, exhilerating, empowering.
    Those on the other side, MPs and (disappointingly) a roll call of young people, accused the other side of sinister intentions. It was they who turned it into a leadership question; not the media. It was they who were being manipulative and manipulated.
    Our rank and file union members cheered and clapped during David Shearer’s speech. They left the Conference buoyed up. Luckily they won’t have heard David Shearer on Radio NZ the next morning.
    Come 2014, whoever the Leader is, he (unlikely to be a woman at this stage) will have to inspire our people to get out the vote in their Labour heartland communities, like Obama did. I’ll leave any MPs who read this post to think on this and put aside their own personal ambitions!

    • Member41 21.1

      I think this is a thoroughly honest take on what happened but I have a different perspective.

      The motion was opposed for principled and practical reasons. The idea that a vote with a 40% trigger should happen after every election was not really the problem (although some people spoke against this on democratic grounds – that 50% is the appropriate number).

      The main problem was that the motion allowed for a vote to take place in February – in the middle of an election cycle – which means 4 months or more of our campaign being undermined by this damaging speculation. It will be very hard for us and Shearer to gain traction whilst that speculation is ongoing. We can’t show unity and solidarity until it is over, and the Conference (albeit mostly for good reasons as you say) prevented us from ending it.

      So the people who spoke against it didn’t do it because they oppose democracy – there will be an election for the leader next time that everyone supported – but because they want to go into next year attacking the Government, not focused internally. We didn’t think that it was in Labour’s best interest to have the ongoing bitter struggle. We certainly didn’t think the public wanted more of it. It’s tiring and demoralising.

      The 40% trigger is unfortunately very low when you have a small caucus. You can basically offer all your voters a front bench position and you’ve got it. That is unfortunate.

      Also – if you and others didn’t realise that vote would become about the leadership then you need to think harder next time. More party democracy is good but it comes with responsibilities. And one of those responsibilities is to think about how your vote might be perceived.

  21. Prickly Jill 22

    The vote next February was already scheduled. And all this talk about just 14 MPs choosing the leader is nonsense (especially when you realise that in December it only took 18 MPs to make that decision). The point about a trigger is that it gives the members the opportunity to vote. And then it is not 14 MPs, but thousands of Party members who decide. That gives the successful Leader a mighty mandate with which to go to the voters at the next Election.

    • Member41 22.1

      Not really Jill – it’s just another half year of navel-gazing for Labour when we should be fighting the Government. I am all for an open democratic leadership process – but not in the middle of the election cycle. So not what we need right now – 4 months of being undermined by speculation + a difficult, bound to be nasty and public leadership battle. And what – then we have a year to reorganise and fight? Nah.

      The vote in February was going to happen. But on a 50% threshold Cunliffe would have had to do more than offer up some front bench seats to unseat Shearer. That’s why some of us opposed the motion. I understand your reasons for supporting it, but I have a different view.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    13 hours ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    18 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    21 hours ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    23 hours ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    1 day ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 days ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 days ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    2 days ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    3 days ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    3 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    3 days ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    4 days ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    4 days ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    5 days ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    6 days ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    6 days ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    6 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    7 days ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    7 days ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    7 days ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    1 week ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
    Together: In leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister could do a lot worse than allow herself to be guided by the spirit of collective sacrifice and co-operation that animated the New Zealanders of 80 years ago. Most Kiwis alive today have had no opportunity to prove their ...
    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
    It is said that generals fight the last war. In the case of the early stages of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) they had learned from the Great Depression of the 1930s and they fought intelligently and successfully. Later their advice would be ignored in favour of the Austerians who ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
    Solidarity Forever: All over the world, the arrival of the Covid-19 virus has exposed the fragility of the walls we erect around ourselves and our loved ones. It has shattered our illusions of autonomy and revealed to us how utterly dependent we all are on other human-beings. Finally, we see ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
    Looking across the various arguments for/against the leading candidates to take the Democratic Nomination, you might honestly be very hard pressed to tell. There are a number of things that have now started happening since Amy Klobuchar and “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg both threw the towel in and immediately (and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
    by Daphna Whitmore Abortion is no longer in the Crimes Act in New Zealand. The law reform passed yesterday and now abortion is a medical matter between a woman and her doctor. Many women’s groups and progressive people have campaigned for reform for decades. The women’s liberation movement and some ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
    Doug Specht, University of Westminster and Julio Gimenez, University of Westminster When fake news, misreporting and alternative facts are everywhere, reading the news can be a challenge. Not only is there plenty of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and other scientific topics floating around social media, you also ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
    As expected, the government has introduced a sessional order to allow Parliament to operate during the pandemic. You can read it on the Order Paper here, but the short version is that questions and motions can be filed electronicly, select committees can work remotely, and the the Business Committee can ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • How to survive 14 days of self-isolation
    So you’ve recently returned from overseas, come into contact with someone who tested positive, got a bit of a dry cough yourself or perhaps just want to self isolate for 14 days to avoid other people who might have COVID-19. Here are a few tips and tricks to help get ...
    1 week ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • Why Leadership Matters – More Than Anything.
    Our Good Fortune: Precisely because she has never been an ideologue (she calls herself a “pragmatic idealist”) Jacinda Ardern has a political nimbleness and spontaneity which, when infused with her exceptional emotional intelligence, produces spectacular demonstrations of leadership. Jacinda's empathic political personality contrasts sharply with the less-than-sunny ways of her ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    1 week ago
  • 68-51
    The Abortion Legislation Bill has just passed its third reading, 68-51. NZ First MPs bailed because their referendum amendment didn't pass, but there were plenty of MPs to provide a majority without them. The bill is a long way from perfect - most significantly, it subjects pregnant people who need ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The ‘herd immunity’ route to fighting coronavirus is unethical and potentially dangerous
    As most of the world tries to suppress the coronavirus spread, some countries are going it alone – trying to manage the pandemic through so-called “herd immunity”. Herd immunity means letting a large number of people catch a disease, and hence develop immunity to it, to stop the virus spreading. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Eight new COVID-19 cases today. It’s no surprise when you look at some numbers
    So, as I sit at home with a very, very slight headache (i.e. not at work when I would otherwise be so), the now familiar figure of Ashley Bloomfield reports eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19  including two in Waikato. A surprise, given that we had just twelve yesterday? No. ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • The WINZ Paradox versus the new COVID-19 Reality: Get real people, seriously…
    Many who advocated for, and voted for, the current Coalition – particularly those who voted Labour and the Green Party – expected to see a sea change in the reality of social services. A real, deep change of attitude, approach of process through which the system negotiates the difficult and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • The Air New Zealand bailout
    Stuff reports that the government is going to have to throw $2 - 3 billion at Air new Zealand to get it through the pandemic. Good. While international routes are basicly closed, Air New Zealand is a strategic asset which is vital to our tourism industry, not to mentioning airfreight. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why NZ’s tough coronavirus travel rules are crucial to protecting lives at home and across the Pac...
    New Zealand’s border restrictions will come with significant job and business losses in the tourism sector, both at home and in the Pacific. But the new travel rules are absolutely necessary to protect the health of New Zealanders and people right across Pacific Islands, because New Zealand is a gateway ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The tiniest of teeth
    Back in early 2018, as a shoddy legal tactic to try and avoid the prisoner voting ban being formally declared inconsistent with the BORA by the Supreme Court, Justice Minister Andrew Little floated the idea of greater legal protection for human rights. When the Supreme Court case didn't go the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
    Professor Philip Hill and Associate Professor James Ussher Most infectious diseases have an Achilles heel, the secret is to find it. The question is if we don’t have a drug or a vaccine for COVID-19, is there something else we can do to beat it? Some people estimate that, without ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • National should isolate Simon Bridges
    The Coalition Governments $12.1 billion economic package to help combat the financial effects of COVID-19 was generally well received across the board, even amongst many business leaders who would normally be critical of a Labour led Government.However there was one glaringly obvious exception, Simon Bridges. The so-called leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How testing for Covid-19 works
    With confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand up to 12, many influential people are writing open letters and opinion pieces and doing press conferences asking why we aren’t pulling out all the stops and testing thousands of people a day like they are in South Korea. The thing is, ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • The COVID-19 package and the limits of capitalism
    by Daphna Whitmore The willingness to put human life before business shows that sometimes capitalism is capable of suspending its relentless drive for profit. For a short time it can behave differently. Flatten the curve is the public health message since COVID-19 suddenly overwhelmed the hospital system in northern Italy. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Black April, May and June?
    Worldwide, the 1918 influenza epidemic – wrongly called ‘Spanish’ flu – lasted about two years. However, it lasted about six weeks in New Zealand (remembered as ‘Black November’, because the dead turned a purplish-black). It is thought about 7000 Pakeha died and 2,500 Maori. The population mortality rate was about ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID 19 has struck… as has a lot of terrible ineptitude from far too many
    In a world and a time when the worst off and most vulnerable have been asked, time and again, to foot the bill for the complete subjugating to the will of the 1% thanks to the GFC, at a point where the world as a whole is now seeing quite ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • What’s in the Coronavirus Package?
    With the economy already reeling from a crisis that’s barely begun, the Government today sought to provide reassurance to workers and businesses in the form of a massive phallic pun to insert much-needed cash into the private sector and help fight the looming pandemic. Here are the key components: $5.1 ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • I just had my benefit suspended during a fucking pandemic
    I am a member of the working poor and so still need state welfare to make rent. So I had booked an appointment for yesterday with my caseworker at Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) to apply for a transition to work grant. However the current health advice in New ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 weeks ago
  • A good first step
    Today the government announced a financial package to deal with the effects of the pandemic. So far, it looks good: an initial $500 million for health to deal with immediate priorities, wage subsidies for affected businesses, $585 a week from WINZ for people self-isolating who can't work from home, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: COVID-19 Alert Level 4
    The COVID-19 situation in New Zealand is moving fast - and to avoid what we've seen overseas - the Government's response must be to move fast too. We're committed to keeping New Zealanders safe and well-informed every step of the way. ...
    19 hours ago
  • SPEECH: Green Party Co-leader James Shaw – Ministerial statement on State of National Emergency an...
    Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  The scale of what we face right now is unlike anything we have ever seen before. Overcoming it is our common purpose. ...
    4 days ago
  • Winston Peters urging New Zealanders overseas to stay put
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging New Zealanders overseas to stay where they are amid the COVID-19 pandemic. "We are reaching a point where the best option for most New Zealanders offshore is to shelter in place, by preparing to safely stay where they are.” "This includes following the instructions ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealanders overseas encouraged to shelter in place
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging the tens of thousands of New Zealanders travelling overseas to consider sheltering in place, in light of COVID-19.  “Since 18 March, we have been warning New Zealanders offshore that the window for flying ...
    5 days ago
  • Ground-breaking abortion law passes, giving NZers compassionate healthcare
    Ground-breaking law has passed that will decriminalise abortion and ensure women and pregnant people seeking abortions have compassionate healthcare. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Package supports Kiwis to put collective health first
    The Green Party says that the measures announced by the Government today will help families and businesses to prioritise our collective health and wellbeing in the response to COVID-19. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters: COVID-19 rescue package ‘more significant’ than any worldwide
    As New Zealanders brace for a global downturn due to Covid-19, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says his Coalition Government’s rescue package "more significant" than any other he's seen around the world. The Coalition is to reveal a multi-billion-dollar stimulus plan on Tuesday afternoon designed to cushion the economic blow ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Our response to COVID-19
    We know some people are feeling anxious about COVID-19. While the situation is serious, New Zealand has a world-class health system and we’re well-prepared to keep New Zealanders safe. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Demerit Points System’ will address youth crime
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Law and Order A New Zealand First member’s bill drawn from the ballot today seeks to overhaul the youth justice system by instigating a system of demerit points for offences committed by young offenders. “The ‘Youth Justice Demerit Point System’ will put an end to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investment in kingfish farming
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $6 million in a land-based aquaculture pilot to see whether yellowtail kingfish can be commercially farmed in Northland, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. A recirculating land-based aquaculture system will be built and operated ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1BT grants for Northland planting
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Forestry Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced two One Billion Trees programme grants of more than $1.18 million to help hapu and iwi in Northland restore whenua and moana. “Many communities around Aotearoa have benefited from One Billion Trees funding since the programme was launched ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand reaffirms support for Flight MH17 judicial process
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahead of the start of the criminal trial in the Netherlands on 9 March, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has reaffirmed the need to establish truth, accountability and justice for the downing of Flight MH17 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF investment in green hydrogen
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister The Government is investing $19.9 million through the Provincial Growth Fund in a game-changing hydrogen energy facility in South Taranaki, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The development of alternative energy initiatives like this one is vital for the Taranaki region’s economy. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Coronavirus support for Pacific
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Minister for Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand is partnering with countries in the Pacific to ensure they are prepared for, and able to respond to the global threat of Coronavirus (COVID-19). “There are currently no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green Party passes landmark law to ensure deaf and disabled voices heard equally in democracy
    Chlöe Swarbrick's Members Bill to support disabled general election candidates has passed into law. ...
    3 weeks 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
    19 hours 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
    21 hours 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 days 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. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
    The Government is backing the Reserve Bank’s latest action to support the economy by reducing longer-term interest rates, meaning lower costs for businesses and mortgage holders, and a lower currency to help our exporters. The Minister of Finance has signed a memorandum of understanding and a letter of indemnity with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
    Associate Health and Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare has today announced the Government’s plan to support Māori communities and businesses in the face of COVID-19. “Our Government’s $12.1 billion economic package will help many Māori whānau, workers and businesses, whether it’s through wage subsidies, income support and worker redeployment, or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
    The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today.  The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
    Four stage Alert System for COVID-19 announced New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – Reduce Contact New Zealanders over 70 and those with certain medical conditions told to stay at home as much as they can to reduce risk of contact with the virus Workplaces to implement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
    Kia ora koutou katoa I’m speaking directly to all New Zealanders today to give you as much certainty and clarity as we can as we fight Covid-19. Over the past few weeks, the world has changed. And it has changed very quickly. In February it would have seemed unimaginable to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
    New Zealand and Singapore have jointly committed to keep supply chains open and to remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the commitment. “This is an important collective response, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
    JOINT MINISTERIAL STATEMENT BY SINGAPORE AND NEW ZEALAND AFFIRMING COMMITMENT TO ENSURING SUPPLY CHAIN CONNECTIVITY AMIDST THE COVID-19 SITUATION  The COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis.  As part of our collective response to combat COVID-19, Singapore and New Zealand are committed to maintaining open and connected supply chains. We ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Transit between Australia and New Zealand
    Travel restrictions, closing our border to almost all travelers came into force from 23:59 on Thursday 19 March 2020 (NZDT).  All airlines were informed of these restrictions before they came into force. Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says “The transit of passengers between Australia and New Zealand has been agreed upon and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $100 million to redeploy workers
    The Government has allocated $100 million to help redeploy workers affected by the economic impact of COVID-19, with the hard-hit region of Gisborne-Tairāwhiti to be the first helped, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford, Forestry and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Employment Minister Willie Jackson announced today. Phil Twyford ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More support for wood processing
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is ramping up support for Tairāwhiti’s wood processing sector to bolster the region’s economy at a time of heightened uncertainty, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Following earlier announcements today of a regional support package for Tairāwhiti, Minister Jones has also announced a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt steps in to protect Air New Zealand
    The Coalition Government has stepped in to protect Air New Zealand with a significant financial deal that protects essential routes and allows the company to keep operating. The Government and Air New Zealand have agreed a debt funding agreement through commercial 24-month loan facilities of up to $900 million*. The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Stronger border measures to protect NZers from COVID-19
    The Government has taken further measures to protect New Zealanders from the COVID-19 virus, effectively stopping all people from boarding a plane to New Zealand from 11:59pm today, except for returning New Zealanders, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today.  New Zealanders’ partners, legal guardians or any dependent children travelling with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Action on indoor gatherings and events to protect public health
    The Government has reinforced its commitment to protecting the health of New Zealanders from COVID-19 through the cancellation of indoor events with more than 100 people.  “Protecting the health of New Zealanders is our number one priority, and that means we need to reduce the risks associated with large gatherings,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealanders advised not to travel overseas
    The New Zealand Government is advising New Zealanders not to travel overseas due to COVID-19, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced. “We are raising our travel advice to the highest level: do not travel,” Mr Peters said. “This is the first time the New Zealand Government has advised New Zealanders ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt announces aviation relief package
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today outlined the first tranche of the $600 million aviation sector relief package announced earlier this week as part of the Government’s $12.1 billion COVID-19 economic response. The initial part of the aviation package aims to secure the operators of New Zealand’s aviation security system, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago