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Who Really is Judging the Poor?

Written By: - Date published: 2:46 pm, June 3rd, 2018 - 89 comments
Categories: benefits, class war, uncategorized, welfare - Tags: , , , ,

Families living in poverty, those who rely on food banks have internalised the overt, covert and inadvertent negative discourse that keeps the poverty conversation focused on individual blame, while ignoring the systemic causes of the problem.

Two incomes not enough for Christchurch family seeking food parcels’  is a headline that speaks volumes and is indicative of a trend that shows that more and more working families are struggling to make ends meet. This trend was identified in research as early as 2006.

Various charities  have been highlighting this issue for a number of years but it’s a trend that sees no sign of abating. Working families are struggling to survive in our low wage economy (thanks Bill English). While working families have been finding it really tough, those on benefits have been on the back foot since the 1990’s.  At that time benefits were cut and set at a rate that ensured that beneficiaries would not have access to an adequate diet. (Some experts suggest that these benefit cuts led to increased social problems). Despite supposed benefit increases in 2016, beneficiaries are no better off and Labour’s 2018 budget  does not go far enough to make much difference for those most in need. Some 500,000 people are left out of full participation in society and it does not appear that situation is going to change in any hurry.

While more and more working families are struggling and beneficiaries carry on coping with their lot in constant survival mode, there seems to be more emphasis on differentiating between the deserving  and the undeserving poor.  The judgements and assumptions come thick and fast about how easy beneficiaries have it in comparison to the working poor. For example:

I do not get any assistance from WINZ for anything as I am working. I would probably be better off financially on a benefit but I want to work

This implies that the benefit is adequate, it’s not. It also implies that those on benefits don’t want to work, they do.  That said, there’s enough evidence showing that even ‘hard work’ does not guarantee people a decent standard of living.

The article ‘Two incomes not enough for Christchurch family seeking food parcels’ provides another example of judgement  that can lead others to make generalisations about those needing food:

I’ve been to a house where they’ve been like ‘great, the food’s sorted. Now we can buy the grog’. You think ‘that’s not the purpose of why we’re here’

Those kind of statements help perpetuate stereotypes and myths about not only people who use food banks, but also about beneficiaries in general and a quick perusal of the comments section in those articles (if you can stomach it) confirms that.

These judgements or statements that justify the worthiness of recipients add to the overall stereotypes that those in need experience on a daily basis.  The sad thing is that you don’t have to search very hard to find example after example of the helping professions inadvertently perpetuating these uniformed beliefs and stereotypes.  It has reached the point that even those most in need resort to similar stereotyping and shame provoking discourse about others deemed less worthy than themselves (for example see this piece of research where food bank recipients were apt to judge other recipients as less deserving).

These type of judgements are internalised and research shows how this type of commentary leads to significant stigma and shame. Not only does that stigma and shame ensure that people in need are reluctant to seek help but it also leads to significant isolation, poor mental health, suicide and disengagement from society. On top of that, many of those experiencing poverty are the same populations that are subject to multiple oppressions in the Aotearoa New Zealand context ( see Giles, 2016).

I think it is time that the helping professions; the food banks, the ‘do gooders’ and  the people who claim they’re making some difference in the lives of others, simply stop and think before they speak. They need to ask themselves whether or not what they’re saying is contributing to the current dominant, anti-beneficiary, blame provoking discourse that plagues conversations around poverty.

Those commentators need to stop differentiating between the deserving and undeserving poor. Stop making stupid statements that poor people simply need to learn more skills (budgeting, cooking, shopping, gardening) to get by. Stop telling the public that their service makes sure those getting the help actually need it. (This simply buys into the myth that those fronting up to the charities are not really in need).  And finally stop individualising what is a systemic problem. I imagine if the ‘helping’ professions took a little more care about the conversations they’re putting out there, it may go some way toward minimising the impact of the negative stereotypes that dominate discourses about poverty.

 

89 comments on “Who Really is Judging the Poor?”

  1. One Anonymous Bloke 1

    Turn the stigma and shame around and direct it where it belongs: at the corrupt sociopaths who finance and otherwise enable the National Party. The authors of the hate speech documented in the OP.

    This isn’t happening by accident.

    • soddenleaf 1.2

      Personal responsibility. If only they took PR. That was the conclusion of a ntn podcast, after much study of criminals the guest declares they lacked PR, that society lacks this. No, not the wealthy collapsing the financial markets, but yet another bottom feeder, who seeks out the fallen, those clearly failed themselves and society, as examples of everyone else. Fact was had he studied the class of all drunks he talked about he’d find many were workibg off the evil they internalized whilst working in the financial sector. It’s not PR that’s the problem it’s society that disregards individuals for the greater growth of balance sheets. Those evil soft liberals aren’t the problem it’s the right-wing commentator pointing away from their own lack of personal culpability and at liberal progressive, who I must remind you, have be ousted from power for the last thirty years by neolib economics.

  2. Bill 2

    I wonder, in this world with its myth that one can “get ahead” if one merely chooses to, whether fucked over people have ever not internalised society’s general antipathy towards poverty and the poor?

    “Poor” is inferior and somehow lacking at the personal level (apparently).

    That judgement goes right back to the inception of liberal capitalism, and was one of the justifications used by the propertied members of society seeking to shape the world to their advantage. So we had ‘the rule’ that only those enjoying property rights could vote, because the fact they had property in a world that was guided by wholly neutral market forces, was illustration enough of their inherent superiority to those who didn’t have property.

    All that’s changed over the past near 200 years – attitudes around poverty, as your post illustrates, certainly haven’t – is that various discrete groups, that were formerly excluded from positions of formal power within capitalism have been co-opted, and arguably neutered as a result – women, workers, non-white skinned people…

    I believe there are some who would call that progress…

    • Stunned mullet 2.1

      There is little doubt that despite the conflict and other disasters over the last couple of centuries that in the main conditions for most of the world’s peoples have improved even those at the most disadvantaged, surely you have little appetite for a grea leap back in time to class war and the deprivations of a couple of hundred or more years ago.

      • Bill 2.1.1

        …in the main conditions for most of the world’s peoples have improved even those at the most disadvantaged

        That’s a crock of shit. For a start, your ideas of “improvement” are bound by western capitalist/consumerist/materialistic measures of “improvement” (and disadvantage) that have baselines that are oblivious to whatever measures various societies and cultures might have used to gauge well being or progress and what not.

        What the situation of many colonised peoples would have been today isn’t something we can even really punt at, given that so many cultures and their peoples were simply removed from the face of the planet altogether.

        And please, do yourself a favour and don’t be tempted to bang on about medical advances or technological advances, as though they would only ever have been possible in a capitalist context. Cheers.

        And not understanding the suggestion that class war is some historical artifact. Open your eyes. Look around.

        • Stunned Mullet 2.1.1.1

          I refer to the following datasets excellently presented by Hans Rosling.

          Your desperation to cling to the demonisation of all things capitalism and of the west are just but becoming a bit of bore.

          • adam 2.1.1.1.1

            Let’s reject logic of any strip, and call Bill a bore.

            Sheesh stunned mullet I knew you were a bit of a look at me, me, me. Even for you that comment is a loser move.

            Come on dude, if you can’t work out the capitalism has been quite destructive. You living with your head up your….

            I suppose I should put a list, or, like the others in rwjn collective, you will cry, or try to make a stupid joke.

            ISIS
            Sudan
            Yeman
            Ukraine
            Puerto Rico
            Haiti
            South Africa
            Isreal
            Guinea
            Liberia
            Nigeria
            Sierra Leone

            I’ll stop now, but the list is big.

            By the way, look up how capitalism stops technology in the name of profit.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1.2

        The last ‘couple of hundred years or more’ also includes the Enlightenment and the resurgence of Democracy. The ‘New Deal’ was not a Capitalist priority no matter how you slice it.

        Not to mention the way limited liability companies are used to shield the owners of capital from the consequences of their behaviour; Chomsky: “Capitalism? Show me some!”

      • millsy 2.1.3

        I don’t know about you, but Chinese, Russians and Indians being able to buy KFC, McDonalds, jeans and TV’s doesn’t count as improving conditions (which seems to be the way to measure prosperity these days). Job protections, social services have been reduced over the past 30-40 years, and rents have quadrupled.

      • WILD KATIPO 2.1.4

        Stunned Mullet ( as always ) selectively chooses examples to suit the narrative. It is no coincidence that many of those peoples in nations in continents such as Africa ,South America or South East Asia often still live in the most rudimentary and destitute fashion. And they often do so because of western banking and capitalist interests.

        One doesn’t have to take a world cruise and travel far from the tourist destinations in those country’s to see the truth. Capitalism has done virtually nothing for those peoples lives. Running water? – a luxury . Medication from introduced diseases? – Often unheard of. And they die young and they die painfully.

        What SM is always talking about are the more prosperous examples of WESTERN nations.

        Which in turn displays the usual arrogant , self righteous and inherently self satisfied exclusiveness of that particular strain of thinking.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2

      To the extent that Calvinism predates Capitalism, it also has a lot to answer for.

      • humma 2.2.1

        Whats wrong with Calvinism? I was brought up in a Calvinistic household and think the grace, love and compassion shown by Calvinism can show us something in this day and age.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.1.1

          because worldly success could be interpreted as a sign of eternal salvation

          Encyclopedia Brittanica.

          • Stuart Munro 2.2.1.1.1

            Calvinism brought an end to pretentions of divine right – judging by the knighting of silly Billy we could use a bit more of it.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.1.1.1.1

              Oh, did I mention it’s a mess of arrant mumbo-pocus? The divine right was mortally wounded by Magna Carta, not the competition between sky-fairies.

        • Grafton Gully 2.2.1.2

          “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”
          Matthew 5:48

    • RedLogix 2.3

      For most of human history we sharply distinguished between trusted insiders and ‘others’. Those who failed to do so tended to get wiped out violently, selecting hard for those who were naturally suspicious of strangers or the unfamiliar. It’s strongly hard-wired into us to be naturally more attached to those we are familiar with, than others we can scarcely know.

      Yet despite this over the past few hundred years we have successfully broadened categories of insider quite remarkably, gradually peeling off the labels we have traditionally stuck to entire masses of people. At a formal level at least, we now regard all of humanity as essentially one species. All humans matter, we all count and none of us are ‘others’ any more.

      And at the same time our real measurable progress towards turning this formal moral ethic into reality, over any meaningful timeframe has also been astonishing. There are no parallels anywhere in our prior evolution I can think of.

      It goes without saying that such a monumental transition has been uneven, sticky and fraught with unexpected consequence … no sane person would argue the world is anything like nirvana. But we can point to a lot of good evidence that we have been generally heading in the right direction. By every measure the entire human race is at this point in time a LOT less violent, better educated, healthier, lives longer and enjoys at least a modest standard of living their great-grandparents might only dream of.

      In this view, ancient and absolute categories of class, race, gender and culture are disintegrating piecemeal, blurring their sharp edges, no longer standing as formal markers of exclusion. Therefore grounding a political philosophy on notions of arbitrary categories in an era when these mean less and less as each decade passes, is to my mind not an effective plan.

      Because while capitalism and technology combined are rapidly all but eliminating absolute poverty, there is no question relative poverty has greatly intensified at the same time. This contradiction generates a great deal of misunderstanding and heat. Each end of the political spectrum argues with considerable justification it’s own ideological view of this paradox; I’ve watched it rage here on and off for years; it goes nowhere and leads to no effective outcome.

      It seems to me at least, that eliminating gross extremes of wealth and relative poverty is the great unsolved moral challenge facing us as a species, but real change will not flow from these stale, positional debates. We should stop wasting time and energy on them and look elsewhere.

      • JanM 2.3.1

        An excellent and thoughtful piece, thank you RedLogix

      • koreropono 2.3.2

        “Each end of the political spectrum argues with considerable justification it’s own ideological view of this paradox; I’ve watched it rage here on and off for years; it goes nowhere and leads to no effective outcome”.

        I disagree. Challenging stereotypes, indeed raising people’s consciousness to social issues, or even their own plight is a valuable social work tool. For example when using narrative therapy or indeed consciousness raising techniques with client groups, there is nothing more satisfying when you see the ‘light bulb’ moment, that leads to measurable and effective outcomes at the individual, family and group level.

        On a mass scale it is important to challenge the status quo/the dominant ideology, lest we all become tarred with the same ideological brush placing financial gain over humanity (but that’s another story). I wonder what would have happened had Martin Luther King Jr not raised peoples’ consciousness or if the feminist movement had not gained momentum through dialogue, literature and action? A narrative was created back in the 1990s and that dialogue indoctrinated young and old alike. It continues to hurt disadvantaged groups. If that narrative goes unchallenged then people will only ever see things from one perspective. Thankfully the number of writers who challenge dominant ideology is proof that having these debates does lead to effective outcomes. I.e. more and more people challenging the status quo. The’ we are beneficiaries’ movement is proof of that.

        “We should stop wasting time and energy on them and look elsewhere”.

        And what would you suggest?

        • RedLogix 2.3.2.1

          Without gainsaying the value and importance of challenging conventional narratives, I do think we tend to get cause and effect inverted; or at the least we tend to overrate the political drama, while neglecting underlying causes.

          For instance consider slavery; a fixed and largely unquestioned feature of all human economic life for at least ten thousand years, yet utterly overturned within a century of the invention of the steam engine. Of course the abolition movement had something to do with it, but an underlying shift in technology certainly enabled the change.

          As for what I suggest? Certainly the left must continue to argue against relative poverty and gross inequality. But merely intensifying, further polarising a debate that has gone nowhere in decades will be counter-productive.

          We often use the metaphor of a ladder when thinking of the economic/social hierarchy. Using this metaphor as a tool suggests possible strategies; one to reduce the steepness of the ladder with the usual structural measures such as taxation and redistribution. Another is to reduce the spacing of the rungs on the ladder with more opportunity for education, healthcare etc, measures that put the next step clearly within reach.

          In broad terms these are the conventional left wing responses; all of which are helpful to some degree, but all of which seem to have real limits. Not the least of which is that they are so easily undone by the next Tory govt that comes along.

          The other possible way to see this problem is to consider how people on each rung of this metaphorical ladder can choose to both help and be helped by those immediately around them. In most ways this is an anti-political idea so I don’t expect it to be received well, but in essence I would argue the most permanent way to reduce inequality is matter of personal ethics. Also the impact of the internet has yet to play out; it may well play the key technological role that shifts the underlying ground, much as the steam engine did over 200 years ago.

          • Molly 2.3.2.1.1

            “For instance consider slavery; a fixed and largely unquestioned feature of all human economic life for at least ten thousand years, yet utterly overturned within a century of the invention of the steam engine. “
            Slavery hasn’t been overturned, just repackaged. I would go so far as to say, the lack of visibility makes it even more profitable and more unlikely to be stopped than during the abolition period. And while the invention of the steam engine might have contributed, but English slave owners didn’t give up without demanding compensation, which the British Treasury only finished paying off in 2015. Ironically, the lists for compensation provide the fullest archive for British slave ownership that exists.

            “The other possible way to see this problem is to consider how people on each rung of this metaphorical ladder can choose to both help and be helped by those immediately around them. “
            The problem with this idea, is that it requires a consensus on what achievements or values are placed on each rung. That is problematic.

            Is is an achievement to have become mortgage free at the age of forty, if by doing so you have contributed to the rising housing costs for others?
            Which rung are you on if you have increased the biodiversity of your land, but have done so on minimum wage?

            • KJT 2.3.2.1.1.1

              Repackaged is right.
              In fact, a youngster being forced by threat of a 13 week standown, from WINZ, to work for an inadequate wage, for a bullying, mean and capricious employer, fits the definition of slave labour, pretty neatly.

              Or the hospitality worker, paying his employer, so him and his extended family, can get residency.

            • RedLogix 2.3.2.1.1.2

              @ Molly

              Your interest link describing British compensation to slave owners demonstrates quite forcefully how deeply embedded the slavery was in our economic systems, and how entirely normal it was for so very long. But bluntly speaking the Industrial Revolution rendered slavery obsolete; machines were typically an order of magnitude faster and cheaper. Within decades slaves had no more labour value than horses were for transport by 1910.

              For the most part, of the abolitionists had simply waited a few more decades their battle would have been largely won for them by sheer economics .. and no compensation needed.

              Consider this, while there is no question the British abolition movement established an important ethical position and won a real political battle within the bounds of the British Empire … yet chattel slavery was on the decline in most parts of the world pretty much at the same time. You can quibble a few decades here and there, but in the context of ten thousand years of historic precedent, it vanished all at once.

              It gets the precedence wrong to say that the “steam engine contributed”, the link is more fundamental than this. The Industrial Revolution enabled the Abolitionists. The technology shifted the ground, which then opened the door for a political response.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Within decades slaves had no more labour value than horses were for transport by 1910.

                In other words, free-labour was cheaper.

                Think about that for second.

                And then consider that the rich blame the poor for being poor.

              • Molly

                “But bluntly speaking the Industrial Revolution rendered slavery obsolete; machines were typically an order of magnitude faster and cheaper. Within decades slaves had no more labour value than horses were for transport by 1910.”
                As DTB mentions above, that statement requires deeper thinking. And further exploration would make it apparent that if human rights were not part of the equation when abolishing slavery, then any future instance of free or cheap labour being required to make profits, would be considered a palatable option.

                As we can see with the prevalence of slavery today.

                Compensation was required, regardless, because those who benefitted from the exploitation of others, also held positions of influence, and used that influence to ensure further enrichment.

                “For the most part, of the abolitionists had simply waited a few more decades their battle would have been largely won for them by sheer economics .. and no compensation needed. “
                This comment really needs thinking about. Those lives, those individual lives you are so blase about, were not academic lives to those living them.

                You also imply that capitalism is fundamentally responsible for the improvement of lives, but ignore the lives, communities and cultures that have been destroyed by the pursuit of profit by capital holders. Which is also ongoing. Not to mention the destruction of the environment on a global scale.

                I would concede that there have been technological and scientific advances that have improved lives, but whether capitalism has hindered or hastened the equal distribution of those benefits is an ongoing discussion. I would tend towards the hinder side, myself.

            • greywarshark 2.3.2.1.1.3

              Red Logix
              What comfortable assumptions you make. And how easily you dismiss people’s distress when a life made by their own actions is taken away from them. Doesn’t matter, in the long run it will pan out, after your time though. Unlucky you.

              Because while capitalism and technology combined are rapidly all but eliminating absolute poverty,there is no question relative poverty has greatly intensified at the same time. This contradiction generates a great deal of misunderstanding and heat. Each end of the political spectrum argues with considerable justification it’s own ideological view of this paradox; I’ve watched it rage here on and off for years; it goes nowhere and leads to no effective outcome.

              Capitalism can intensify absolute poverty, and make death seem preferable to life. That thought of yours has maggots.

              For instance consider slavery; a fixed and largely unquestioned feature of all human economic life for at least ten thousand years, yet utterly overturned within a century of the invention of the steam engine. Of course the abolition movement had something to do with it, but an underlying shift in technology certainly enabled the change.

              Slavery always involves deprivation of something. But some slaves can be very well off, indeed some could earn enough to buy themselves out. They would be the exceptions. And being released from slavery can mean losing the protection of an owner valuing you as part of his/her resources. The blacks freed in the USA after their war became like the fox in the hunt, and likely to be beaten and strung up when caught. Red Logix you are dismissive of the individual here while you look at a broad history.

              The broad history of treatment by humans of each other is not served by dismissing bad behaviour. It is more likely to be elevated when there is better understanding along with some acceptance, and a vow to do better.

              • RedLogix

                Capitalism can intensify absolute poverty,

                Well no it hasn’t. In general terms quite the opposite. Globally the fraction of people living in absolute poverty has decreased dramatically from over 94% in 1820 to about 9% in 2018. In recent decades the rate has only accelerated to the point where just 30 odd countries account for almost all absolute poverty, and 2 of them, India and Nigeria for 40%.

                https://ourworldindata.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Tree-Map-of-Extreme-Poverty-distribution.png

                This doesn’t diminish or argue away the distress and suffering of those still trapped at the very bottom of the global heap wherever they may be, but in the overall context of history such a sustained, global and enduring economic shift has never happened before. Disentangling the relative contributions of the Enlightenment, science, engineering, technology and financial expertise makes for an interesting tangential debate, but arguably none of this remarkable transition would have been possible absent any single ingredient.

                Having said this; I’ve clearly stated (something you selectively omitted) that capitalism has paradoxically intensified relative poverty, which in it’s own turn is directly correlated with entire clusters of psychological and social ills. But to discuss this crucial matter intelligently, we need to be crystal clear on the distinction here, on the enormous problems capitalism has both solved and the new ones it has created. Progress is made by solving the real problems in front of us; not replaying old ones that exist primarily as emotional echoes, relics from prior centuries.

                Specifically I would argue the left should give away framing capitalism as the enemy; it is a social tool like any other, albeit powerful and prone to both great use and abuse. But on balance it has been an essential component of 200 years of astonishing progress; the world is not going to abandon it for all it’s flaws. Therefore we should bend our energies to adapting our use of this tool to solve the problems in front of us. And that I’d argue is a far more ambitious vision than anything a battered, outdated remnant Marxism might offer.

                • Stunned Mullet

                  Nice comment RL worthy of a post and enthusiastic discussion in its own right

                • greywarshark

                  I said that capitalism canintensify poverty. That shouldn’t be disagreed with as nothing is 100%. And quoting statistics gathered about people is pretty banal. Communism certainly does intensify relative poverty. Great improvements have been made in certain countries because of capitalism. But I think you may be considering material things mainly. But as for making people’s lives seem better, there is much unhappiness in countries that rate highly on a materialism ladder. So it is a mixed blessing. And that is reflected in the saying that problems aren’t solved by throwing money at them.

                  What we need is managed capitalism which would be far different to what we have been left with today. We also have to learn to work co-operatively and learn to plan. Running a democracy as a leader and and as a supporting citizen should be an important primary school course. How to organise a group that has a goal, an idea, and how to present it and carry it out. That would be good, children would enjoy that. Capitalism encourages the idea of being a worker. Many NZs have the idea that shopkeepers are wealthy and mini-capitalists and this is because they are so used to working for others. I struck this attitude when I had a small shop.

                  Capitalism also doesn’t encourage people to be participatory citizens, but likes the representative model. “We know what’s best, and will serve you well.” With a push the citizens can force consultation but may find it merely answers questions about the plan and ignores any requests and demands that the group involved all agree with and sometimes they may be wrong but have to be properly informed and aren’t.

                  I think citizens of Waiheke Island who wanted to stop a large marina being built there, having lost a case against it, have to pay $100,000 of costs. That is capitalism. There is a demand from wealthy boat owners, or people who are footloose and sample the world from their boat. So there is money to be made and whatever the residents had, they have no right to stop it being invaded for someone’s profit. It will be up to them to prise some of the profits to go towards amenities and to say fund a concert once a year as a booby prize. And that is what unbridled capitalism gives the ordinary Joe and Josephine in the end. At present it gives them overpriced housing and the whole life plan of a huge number of NZs that they could look forward to in past decades, has been swept away by the ugly capitalism adopted, this neoliberal capitalism

                  • RedLogix

                    And quoting statistics gathered about people is pretty banal.

                    I get it; every person on struggle street is someone with a story, usually a tough one. I think all of us here can either tell their own, or listened to them first hand.

                    And that is indeed the core of my argument above; if you are going to make a difference to people’s live the best way is one on one, personal and up-close. Intimacy and understanding the unique details of each individuals life sets the stage for the most effective transformations. This is the sense in which the personal is political, lives change one at a time.

                    But the tools for understanding the broader social picture, which is what I’m addressing, are different. Here is where numbers do matter, where data is king and statisticians are the princes of the modern world.

                    We’re both presenting two different ways to engage with the same thing; each has it’s place.

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                      The most effective moves against poverty still remain at the collective level, and that is the only way to sustain the right kind of capitalism.

                      It’s moves like increasing benefits such as Working For Families, increasing the minimum wage, and making the Living Wage a full policy that will lift people out of poverty fastest.

                      Another is in collective wage and salary agreements. With the decline of unions, the New Zealand government is now stepping directly back into industry-wide award agreements. Believe it or not, this initiative is going to be led by Jim Bolger (!)

                      Making a difference in people’s lives is at least as hard as you suggest. But each person in deep relative poverty has a large set of issues that got them there.

                      Those issues of poverty are addressed in the collective by institutions, and often multiples of them, because it is only institutions that have the specialist capacity and longevity to bring that assistance to bear long enough and broad enough to enable people.

                      Arguing for state institutions strong enough and interrelated enough to address poverty is not an argument against capitalism. It is an argument that the only bearable kind of capitalism is one in which collectivist institutions – such as the institutions of the state – are strong enough to sustain society.

            • tracey 2.3.2.1.1.4

              Well said

          • koreropono 2.3.2.1.2

            RedLogix you raise some interesting points but Molly then counters some of those with valid points that I agree with.

            When you say that “people on each rung of the metaphorical ladder can choose to both help and be helped by those immediately around them” are you referring to community development and localising support at various levels? If so, I kind of agree ( there’s a whole other debate sitting here too), but in order to do that there needs to be a level of raising critical consciousness to help people move past the indoctrinated bullshit of the last 30 odd years.

            Which brings me to this point, when you say “the conventional left wing responses; all of which are helpful to some degree, but all of which seem to have real limits. Not the least of which is that they are so easily undone by the next Tory govt that comes along”. When you refer to ‘the conventional left’ I am not sure who you mean, if you’re talking political thought and agendas I don’t see either of the dominant political parties as anything other than agents of the status quo, and there is certainly nothing left about that.

            • RedLogix 2.3.2.1.2.1

              Yes that certainly fits within the very wide bounds of what I was thinking of. Essentially we need to transform the enormous challenge of relative poverty from a political battle into an ethical one. In the past decade the ground has shifted dramatically; we now have excellent hard data and research that clearly establishes why gross inequality is bad for everyone.

              With a global economy well on the way to eliminating absolute poverty (https://humanprogress.org/article.php?p=770) we now face a radical and very significant psychological transition. For all of our eovlution most humans lived in extreme poverty; life was pretty much always a zero sum game, if one person won it was usually seen to be at the expense of someone else.

              We now live in a world where this is no longer an absolute truth. An entirely new possibility arises where the more individuals do better, the more everyone does better. Adapting to this new paradigm demands a deep shift in how we view the world. I deliberately chose to draw a parallel with the abolition of slavery; the underlying shifts in both technology AND our collective ethical outlooks are very similar.

              From our vantage point in 2018 we find it hard to imagine how anyone tolerated chattel slavery; we find it morally repugnant regardless of our political outlook. Yet our ancestors, who were really no less human than us, universally considered slavery perfectly normal, desirable even, for millennia. Right here we can point to an example of a deep psychological and ethical shift within the purview of our own recent history. The human ability to adapt to new circumstance is something we can depend on; IF we approach it correctly.

              Of course the transition from slavery was not easy, the Industrial Revolution came with it’s own challenges and awfulness, but crucially we can look back to see how we clearly evolved from one ‘status quo’ to another one small step at a time. The process was complex and messy, but it didn’t involve tearing the whole mess down to rubble in the hope something nice would arise in it’s place. (The French tried but most of the rest of the world looked on in horror and determined not to repeat.)

              Because the ‘status quo’ is not so carelessly dismissed; it may well fall short of some hypothetical ideal, but it is what we have and it isn’t all bad. If it really were so god awful neither of us would be safely typing this out with full stomachs and warm feet.

              The great challenge of inequality is primarily a psychological, ethical and social challenge; the political front is necessary but not central to establishing enduring change. That means winning minds and hearts, reaching out and expanding the left’s influence, persuading and transforming across the entire political spectrum. Huddling in politically radical ghettos hurling ideological invective just doesn’t feel like an effective plan.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.3.3

        But we can point to a lot of good evidence that we have been generally heading in the right direction.

        This is true but is it true due to capitalism?

        Capitalists have been against the removal of slavery, legislation against discrimination on race or gender, and pretty much every other ‘progressive’ action taken.

        • KJT 2.3.3.1

          I am sure all those African, Chinese and Mexican small farmers, who have been ‘rescued from poverty by capitalism” really appreciated losing their income, and having to migrate to city slums, in the hope of work.

          Rising average GDP, is not actually a measure of poverty reduction. like all right wing stats, it ignores the reality of a few doing well, while many are worse of.

    • soddenleaf 2.4

      Personal responsibility. If only they took PR. That was the conclusion of a ntn podcast, after much study of criminals the guest declares they lacked PR, that society lacks this. No, not the wealthy collapsing the financial markets, but yet another bottom feeder, who seeks out the fallen, those clearly failed themselves and society, as examples of everyone else. Fact was had he studied the class of all drunks he talked about he’d find many were workibg off the evil they internalized whilst working in the financial sector. It’s not PR that’s the problem it’s society that disregards individuals for the greater growth of balance sheets. Those evil soft liberals aren’t the problem it’s the right-wing commentator pointing away from their own lack of personal culpability and at liberal progressive, who I must remind you, have be ousted from power for the last thirty years by neolib economics.

      • tracey 2.4.1

        Like when Simon Bridges blames ‘dud advice’ and 44% of voters nod and think “ bloody advisors”

  3. North 3

    Dear Stunned Mullet…..a bottle of ugly plonk for your thick as non-sequitur rhetorical “…..surely you have little appetite for a grea leap back in time to class war and the deprivations of a couple of hundred or more years ago.”

    Talk about missing the very essence of the post !

    I guess it’s a waste of breath to remind you that we don’t have to look back a couple of hundred years to see a real, live, enduring class war going on.

    Taking another approach, your stupidity actually underlines the point you’ve missed. So thank you I guess.

    • Stunned mullet 3.1

      Dear North good to see you’re still about and as noisome a cunt as always.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1

        North has a point. If the way the most vulnerable members of our society are treated isn’t a “class war” then the definition of “class war” needs refreshing.

        “Ferals”, “underclass”, “lazy and stoned”, “personal responsibility”, “don’t you know who I am?” Not to mention the Iwi/Kiwi racism that goes along with it.

        This is what a class war looks like.

        • TheBlackKitten 3.1.1.1

          Your comments really do annoy me as all I see is a lot of bitterness when ones opinions does not agree with your ideology 1000 percent. Why don’t you offer constructive alternatives instead of getting so bitter towards those that have different opinions to yours.
          Here I will give you some help. Tell me ONB, what would you do about poverty if you were the Prime Minister of NZ. Now please try not to be nasty and personel in your reply. You may gain some respect by doing that.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1.1.1

            Can you point to the “nasty, personal” aspect of the comment you responded to?

            Didn’t think so.

            I’m a big fan of predistribution: raising wages (including the MW) is a number one priority. That means stronger unions and more labour inspectors. In extreme cases, Mr. Peter Talley should have his assets seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act, pour discourager les autres.

            Obviously benefits need to rise to a dignified level.

            Embed the BoRA in our constitution (such as it is), re-assert the rule of law. Enforce both far more stringently than at present.

            None of this is rocket science: all you have to do is look at the policies of countries doing a better job than we are. None of this should be news to anyone, since these are positions I’ve held and articulated for years.

            Perhaps you (somehow) managed to only read the comments I use to hold a mirror up to the National Party.

          • WILD KATIPO 3.1.1.1.2

            @ TheBlackKitten

            … ‘ and as noisome a cunt as always ‘ …

            I fail to see how OAB was as ” so bitter towards those that have different opinions to yours ” … compared to Stunned Mullet.

            You really must have peculiar ( and selective double ) standards, mate.

      • Drowsy M. Kram 3.1.2

        A revealing judgement – takes one to see/label one? You must be fair busting with pride.

      • Gabby 3.1.3

        Why’s that good to see stunted munter? What item of genitalia are you?

      • greywarshark 3.1.4

        stunned mullet
        Control your choice of language.

  4. Ad 4

    Well written.

    As the headline NZ unemployment heads down to 4%, at some point employers are going to have to pay New Zealanders in other firms a whole bunch more.

    Employers are also going to have to incentivise more and more; like in-work daycare, paying to get them drivers licenses, subsidized accommodation, free HOP cards to get to work, paying them to complete advanced literacy and trades training. The pressure is on employers to really persuade potential workers to commit to those work places.

    • Stuart Munro 4.1

      I’ll believe that when I see it.

      The lack of response in real wage terms to supposedly historically low unemployment levels suggest that the stats are less than bankable. A true low unemployment rate will see rises beyond government lifting of minimums.

      We’ve some way to go to restore the credibility of govt statistics after a decade of deliberate misrepresentation.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      The pressure is on employers to really persuade potential workers to commit to those work places.

      No it’s not.

      As the headline NZ unemployment heads down to 4%, at some point employers are going to have to pay New Zealanders in other firms a whole bunch more.

      More likely that they’ll complain about ‘skill shortages’ to the government and import people to keep wages down. As they have been doing for years.

      free HOP cards to get to work

      The government should get that happening now by the simple expedient of having employers pay for peoples travel to and from work to home.

      • tracey 4.2.1

        When “chef” is now one of our top “skill” shortage occupations that system is beyonf broken

    • tracey 4.3

      Why? We have had cycles of good and bad times for the last 40 years and tge only wages consistently going up are CEOs and MPs. And when the former do wrong they get million dollar payouts to leave and when MPs do wrong they get voted back

  5. AsleepWhileWalking 5

    In your first link (Two incomes not enough)

    In an average week, Kylie* and her partner might take home a combined $620 after tax. In a tough week it could be less than $300.

    The Christchurch mother said she did not receive any Government support or tax cuts to help her and her partner raise their two children, aged 8 and 5.

    These people don’t need budgeting advice, they need tax advice.

    It pisses me off that it is assumed people with low incomes should proceed through life with material disadvantage because they remain ignorant of what they can claim.

    Canada has a very successful program teaching refugees and poor about their tax system so they can get some upward mobility going. We need this too.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 5.1

      They charity *helping* them should have mentioned family tax credit. Its not judging, its discerning.

    • koreropono 5.2

      Maybe Kylie needs less support with tax advice but some support around changing her thinking. For example I wonder why she felt guilty about taking her kids for a free haircut? Was it because she thinks that only those who look homeless are deserving of it?

      Kylie “said she did not receive any government support or tax cuts” she then goes onto say “I just kind of like to do it on my own. I shouldn’t really do it the hard way but I don’t like to seek too much help”. I wonder why she chooses not to get the Working for Families Tax credits? Perhaps the answer lies in being indoctrinated in to believing that only certain kinds of people get this help? Is part of the problem that particular narratives are designed to make people feel guilty, or bad about receiving government support?

      Some of New Zealand’s more extreme right wing commentators are pretty good at making the Kylies of the world feel like bludgers if they seek support from Government sources.

      • tracey 5.2.1

        Excellent point. The villification of our poor and vulnerable has achieved its purpose self loathing silence and a desire not to be similarly tainted

  6. Zorb6 6

    Predatory lending as per the former Westpac executive and Equiticorp thief Allan Hawkins companies recently fined $720,000 ,have a huge impact on the poor.
    He should have been given another 6 years and not allowed out from 6.am to 6 p.m like when he did his last lag.
    Plenty more like him doing the same thing.Enticing the unsophisticated ,financially illiterate into ludicrous loans with eyewatering interest rates and penalties swamping people with unpayable debt.

  7. Observer Tokoroa 7

    There is no problem – but Capitalism

    No Government has to borrow money.
    no family has to struggle

    All essentials such as Housing must have capped pricing
    All Rentals must have capped pricing
    All essential food items must have capped pricing
    All Energy must belong to Government
    All Waters must belong to Government
    All Land must belong to to Government
    Air lines and their Routes belong to the Government
    All earnings above a given agreed Amount, must be returned to the Nation

    We have tried the idea of tossing every important thing to the greed of greedy. Ii has failed everywhere. Only pathetics such as Hosking and Espiner and Soper believe in crucifying the poor. Garner too.

    In return, No man or Woman shall receive anything unless they work for the good of everyone. Every worker, from Professional down to Untrained shall be responsible for their effort

    Share Holders shall not have any protection. Because Banks offer no protection to their Clients – there is no point in giving Share holders anything.

    Very Nordic – Yes. And very sane

    Just look at the mess National is in. They are positively vile. Evil in fact.

  8. TheBlackKitten 8

    Several issues contribute towards this issue and neither political party addresses them. The right wing label poverty as being lazy and the the left label it as not enough welfare when neither are the correct answers.
    The white elephant in the room that no political party addresses is that there is not enough jobs for everyone. NZ employers do not invest in any training and we are all paying international prices for food and housing which are essential living costs but we do not receive international wages. Sorry but NZ employers need a kick up the arse on issues of competitive wages and training to upskill the NZ workforce. Going to tech and getting a diploma does not give people the skills that on the job training does. All it achieves is high loans that need to be paid back and holds the young back financially. Importing migrants from poor countries desperate to stay in NZ and who will work for low wages and crappy conditions does not help the poor or improve the living standard for NZers. These issues only benefit rich business.
    We are been gouged the living daylights out of what we pay for basic essentials. I have not seen one NZ political party address the issue of why we pay the prices we do for food. Why does a bottle of milk cost what it does in the supermarket? What are the costs involved in getting milk from the cow to the supermarket? I suspect if this was investigated that you would find a lot of price gouging and ticket clipping involved.
    We now live in a global economy where third world countries that have poor working conditions have taken away a lot of unskilled work. This contributes to less jobs. Less jobs means the ones that are available can decide the terms and will offer as little as they can get away with.
    The real solution to poverty is lots of jobs with opportunity to upskill that won’t result in high students loans that will hold you back financially for the rest of your life.

    • Stunned mullet 8.1

      Don’t come here and talk sense you’ll be villified.

      • WILD KATIPO 8.1.1

        The problem is you never have. And neither has your little buddy TheBlackKitten.

        Have a read , both of you.

        Get an education for once.

        New Right Fight – Who are the New Right?
        http://www.newrightfight.co.nz/pageA.html

        • WILD KATIPO 8.1.1.1

          My apologies to TheBlackKitten.

          Indeed there are a few things that are correct in your above post. I consider myself corrected. However , I would be careful in future in defending the arrogance of Stunned Mullet,… whose views appear diametrically opposed to what you speak about.

    • tracey 8.2

      How would you address an aging and top heavy popukation tgat has close to, if not, negative growth, without immigration?

  9. Tricledrown 9

    Greed is a survival instinct nature is about the strongest smartest exploiting the resources.
    Those who miss out die leaving the strongest to breed to carry on the species.
    This basic instinct is the “heart” ironically of right wing monetarism.
    Civilization has not changed human behaviour to look out for the weak ,poor,disadvantaged .
    Fighting against nature’s pyramid scheme trying to undo it has been a failure harnessing it to benefit a wider spread of people is the best we can do.
    Pure capitalism Pure Communism are both failures.
    Balance of the 2 Dogmas works best.
    Ying and Yang push and pull competing dogmas delivers balance.
    Since the collapse of feudal communism capitalism has got more selfish and nasty.

  10. Observer Tokoroa 10

    Lol Stunned Mullet Lesson

    I hate teaching people anything, especially Kiwis, because they are the best and the greatest Wonderkind in the whole World. They Know and do everything.

    I am a Kiwi and I know for a fact – that as long as I can fart I am an educated New Zealander.

    But Canberra owns the Land. Yes. Get stunned Mullet. Canberra owns. the land.

    It allows or disallows people to build or not to build according to the Intentions of the Australian Capital Territory Authority.

    Or do you still think that Stalin did that . ?

    Now your good mate Hosking and Pigtails Key, will say it cause erections in there fronts and is very bad. For they want to take all the land for themselves and put it in their coffins when the (hopefully) pass on peacefully.

    I have one more little thing for you to consider Good old Mullet ?

    Would you explain, to all of us Kiwis how it is that that more and more money goes to fewer and fewer people. There are Millions of stupid econo mists strolling around doing sweet all, who never explain why money is a wayward treachery.

    It has no value because it favours fewer and fewr persons. Stick that up your treasured Mullet good man.

  11. Leonhart Hunt 11

    Really good write up, Ive been looking at how we got into this mess as it directly affected me, Its really heartbreaking to be stereotyped as a “bludger” or the most recent “drug use” (MSD testing show beneficiary drug use as 0.005%) “iphone’s” or “doesn’t want to work” (which is just stupid as the data show we do) excuse for treating my kind as less than human. Even though I am no longer unemployed I am still broken by what msd did to me and I doubt I will ever fully recover.

    Ive written before about the issues I had with MSD including being prosecuted for benefit fraud for simply living in the same flat with another person, (I plead guilty for various reasons, mostly because you can’t really oppose their judgments, MSD has a 97% win rate) was sentenced to Home D (completed) and community work (completed) as well as reparations (five grand already payed back, btw to me I consider this me paying back my unemployment benefit for the time I was on it, like a loan instead of “fraud” because no matter what they say I still maintain I did not lie on my applications over weather i had a partner or not, because I don’t.) 1/2 of the total amount, this week took another turn MSD contacted me to pay the other 1/2 of the reparations (you know that bit that the judge reduced based on means and liability) apparently MSd doesn’t agree with this, instead of challenging it in court they (according to them) have the power to recover funds that are beyond what a court has deemed. which I of course can’t pay because Im paying reparations which the amount I set at all the spare money I have, this doesn’t matter to MSD, its pay up or else.

    Oh and did anyone read the report on RNZ about ACC vs MSD prosecutions? ACC last year prosecuted 4 people, MSD 644 people, ACc handles a large fraud case load and pretty much identical situations.

    there’s good news though I have been in contact with the Hon Carmel Sepuloni, unfortunately I do not have permission to discuss what I have been talking about or her replies in any detail but “changes are coming”, hopefully they will be the ones we need so desperately because so many things in our society are affected directly by social services and we need a functioning system that is fair and accessible to all.

    • tracey 11.1

      Thanks for your comments. Gordon Campbell addressed so many welfare myths in his piece a few years ago at Werewolf. Sadly when some read tge facts they suppress it and continue on believing the dross they are tossed to keep tgem feeling confy. Bridges did it again by tossingctge 44% ‘dud advice’. A most BS of BS justification but the 44% seem pleased to have something to blame so that

      A. Nats are not held to account
      B. They dont feel foolish about being misled, again and again and again

      Fool you once shame on me fool you dozens and dozens of times, shame on you. The Nats strategy of Crosby Texter etc plays on people not wanting to admit they are wrong. Who wants to look foolish? So feed them more BS

  12. Jackel 12

    Capitalism is just a generic term that means market conditions exist at a particular place and time. It can also include predator investment banks, the debt system and money as a commodity. It’s just what you get when you let the cards fall by default. There is a non zero probability a better system exists. Why has no one thought of one. Well, better the devil you know but in time this too shall pass. Perhaps when we learn to be a bit more humane towards each other.

    • Leonhart Hunt 13.1

      No, this person is a con-person a deliberate fraudster, not undeserving poor, tenancies really need a centralised database that records all Tenancy agreements and how they ended to stop people like this, but even these people are deserving of assistance.

      • Antoine 13.1.1

        More undeserving poor, http://gisborneherald.co.nz/localnews/3167780-135/rental-nightmare-on-elgin-street

        (And yes I do understand there’s plenty of undeserving rich too)

        • One Anonymous Bloke 13.1.1.1

          Where are you going with this nasty divisive crusade of yours? What’s it meant to prove other than that you’re a low-life?

          • Antoine 13.1.1.1.1

            I’m pointing out that the distinction between undeserving and deserving poor is still useful. Just like the distinction between undeserving and deserving rich.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 13.1.1.1.1.1

              It’s useful to low-life sociopaths, sure.

            • koreropono 13.1.1.1.1.2

              @Antoine – the only people who find isolated and limited examples useful, are those who like to create stereotypes to justify the vilification of certain types of people. Those stereotypes are then used to justify the mistreatment of those groups.

              It’s a bit sad that bias leads certain kinds of people to constantly seek out information that will confirm their preconceived and bigoted ideas. I think this happens because certain kinds of people don’t have the capacity for critical thinking. I think we should pity those people, whereas others think those kind of people are just arseholes.

              • Antoine

                You can call me an arsehole and a sociopath if you like; I call it being able to tell the difference between one thing and another. If you want to discard that ability then go for it, but I think it’s part of what makes us human.

                A.

                • koreropono

                  @Antoine maybe some reading comprehension lessons wouldn’t go amiss either.

                  While stereotypical thinking is the brain’s shortcut and strategy to filter information and could be simply classified as ‘being human’, faulty ‘thinking’ develops when people don’t learn to develop other skills and processes within the brain, like critical thinking.

                  It is simplistic to assume that people can simply ‘discard’ our human inclination to form stereotypes, particularly when it is hardwired into the brain to help us manage large volumes of information. It becomes faulty and problematic when people do not develop other the skills to question their unconscious biases. It becomes problematic and harmful to others when people, such as yourself, rely on erroneous or biased information to either denigrate and vilify others or perpetuate those steretypes. Bias, whether conscious or not, means that people, such as yourself, will tend toward seeking out information that confirms their preconceived prejudices. Sure some poor people are bad, so are some rich people. Some commentators on TS are are stupid but it doesn’t mean they all are. Which category do you fall into?

                  • Antoine

                    Suggest you redirect your energy from thinking of elaborate ways to be snarky to me, to something useful

                    A.

        • Leonhart Hunt 13.1.1.2

          That link shows the normal bias towards renters/poor note the comment at the end by the letting companies “5 – 10 percent of renters do this” the hard data show only 5% of rental agreements go to the TT (I cannot imagine landlords not taking this damage to the tt) so this would mean even at the lowest of what this agent says would be all cases taken to the TT, which Is simply not true.

          Completely tratshing a place is very rare, and almost always makes the news there has been only one other published case like this so far this year.

          • Antoine 13.1.1.2.1

            I don’t say this behaviour is common.

            A.

            • Leonhart Hunt 13.1.1.2.1.1

              I didn’t say you did, and we do need a better way of dealing with issues like this but still not undeserving of help. its pretty clear from the story linked that the person when though a mental health crisis, especially with being a “good” tenant for so long, subletting is usually not allowed in rental agreement (but not all have it spelled out) and the original tenant may not have been the one that trashed the place.

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    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    4 days ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    4 days ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    5 days ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    5 days ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    5 days ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    6 days ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    6 days ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    7 days ago
  • Too Late To Change Capitalism’s Flightpath?
    Collision Course? In conditions of ideological white-out, the international bankers’ “Woop-Woop! Pull Up!” warning may have come too late to save global capitalism.WHAT DOES IT MEAN when international bankers are more willing to embrace radical solutions than our politicians and their electors? At both the International Monetary Fund and the ...
    7 days ago
  • Whooping cough vaccine works well despite its imperfections
    Pertussis (whooping cough) is a conundrum. It is a disease that was described hundreds of years ago and the bacteria that causes it (Bordetella pertussis) isolated in 1906. We have had vaccines for about 80 years but this disease is defiant in the face of human immunity. I wanted to ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Passed
    The Zero Carbon Bill has just passed its third reading, uanimously. In the end, National supported it - but we all know they'll turn around and gut it the moment they regain power. Meanwhile, I guess ACT's David Seymour didn't even bother to show up. I am on record as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Retailing of vaping products – New NZ Research
    Dr Lindsay Robertson, Dr Jerram Bateman, Professor Janet Hoek Members of the public health community hold divergent views on how access to vaping products or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) products should be arranged. Some believe ENDS should be as widely available as smoked tobacco and argue for liberal ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Justice for Bomber
    When the Police were trying to cover up for the National Party over Dirty Politics, they went all-in with their abuses of power. They illegally search Nicky Hager's house, violating his journalistic privilege and invading his privacy. They unlawfully acquired Hager's bank records. They did the same to left-wing blogger ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Britain’s climate tyranny was unlawful
    Last month, in response to a wave of protests by Extinction Rebellion, the British government purported to ban their protests from the whole of London. It was a significant interference with the freedoms of expression and assembly, and another sign of the country's decline into tyranny. But now, a court ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More crime from the spies
    Last year, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security reported on significant problems with the intelligence warrant system. While they were unwilling to declare any warrant "irregular" (meaning unlawful) due to the recent law change, they were also not willing to give the system a clean bill of health. Now, they've ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Vaccination, compulsion, and paternalism for the lower orders
    The National Party has come out in support of encouraging greater vaccination uptake. But it sure isn’t the way I’d do it. National’s suggested docking the benefits of those on benefit whose kids aren’t keeping up with their vaccinations. Some in National have suggested extending that to payments under Working ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    1 week ago
  • Global Protests Rage On: But Slogans Are Not Plans.
    Feeding The Flames: It is simply not enough to demand an end to “corruption”, or “inequality”, or the overbearing influence of the authorities in Beijing. These are just “lowest common denominator” demands: the sort of slogans that pull people onto the streets. They are not a plan.WHERE’S THE PLAN? Across ...
    1 week ago
  • 11,000 employed under Labour
    The labour market statistics have been released, and unemployment has risen to 4.2%. There are 115,000 unemployed - 11,000 fewer than when Labour took office. In that time the minimum wage has gone up by $2 an hour, which shows that the right's fears about increases causing unemployment are simply ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Boycott this democratic fraud
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has called for submissions on Andrew Little's tyrannical Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill. Normally I encourage participation in the democratic process. I am not doing so in this case. Instead, I encourage all of you to boycott this submissions process, and to post ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why Mars is cold despite an atmosphere of mostly carbon dioxide
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz If tiny concentrations of carbon dioxide can hold enough heat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Ban private jets
    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • The freshwater mussel housing crisis: eviction by invasive weeds?
    Tom Moore Traditionally a food source and cutting tool, freshwater mussels/kākahi are now widely valued as water filters that help clean our waterbodies and maintain ecosystem health throughout Aotearoa. The improvement they provide in water quality can make it easier for other animals to live in streams and rivers, as ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Back it up Luxon: endorsing the destructive past is not actually the way forward
    And to think he gave all the potential goodwill away with that moronic, cult-like statement (repeated ad nauseam by many National hardliners) that Key is quite simply “the greatest PM we ever had”… Installation complete: this was nothing ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Good riddance
    National MP and former Conservation Minister Maggie Barry will not seek re-election next year. Good riddance. Because in case anyone has forgotten, barry is a bullying thug who terrorised both public servants and fellow MPs. She is one of the people who makes Parliament a toxic workplace, and our country ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: D-Day
    The Zero Carbon Bill is back in the House today for its second reading. While this isn't the final stage, its still effectively D-Day for the bill. Because today, at around 5pm, is when we're going to find out if it has a majority, whether National will support it or ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Winston is right
    Winston Peters is in court today, suing a bunch of former Minister and civil servants over their pre-election leak of his superannuation repayment. He's characterised the leak as malicious, and said that it is repugnant that his information was passed on to Ministers to use for political advantage. And he's ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Media impartiality
    Sky's economics editor, Ed Conway has posted a Twitter thread responding to a claim that - as far as I can see - Labour never made:
    Are NHS operation cancellations at an all-time high? That's the impression you might have been left with if you read this story from the ...
    1 week ago
  • Finish what’s on your plate
    Murray Cox Do I have to finish my favourite genome? That’s an often-asked question. Geneticists generally strive to produce high-quality genomes that sequence every last gene, making full use of the state-of-the-art technologies coming on stream. Sequencing DNA means determining the order of the four chemical building blocks – called ...
    SciBlogsBy Genomics Aotearoa
    1 week ago
  • Gainful Employment: A Cautionary Tale.
    Transformative Politics: The idea is to turn each recipient into an unwitting accomplice in their own transformation. From interested observer to hyped-up activist, sharing our messages promiscuously with ‘friends’. You’ll be part of an ever-expanding circulatory system, Jennifer, for the ideas that will win us the election.”JENNIFER SKITTERED her chair ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand should not fund bigotry
    Two years ago, the Cook Islands government announced that it was planning to join the civilised world and decriminalise consensual homosexual sex between men. Now, they've reversed their position, and decided to criminalise lesbians into the bargain:Two years ago, in a step welcomed by many people including the gay and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • More tyranny in Australia
    The boycott is a fundamental tool of protest. By choosing who we buy from, we can send a message, and hopefully change corporate behaviour. Historically, boycotts have been effective, for example over apartheid in South Africa and Israel, in forcing divestment from Myanmar, and in ending bus segregation in the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Submission for rationality and science against the assaults of pre-modernism and post-modernism
    Jan Rivers spoke at the Abortion Legislation Select Committee in favour of the bill, but in opposition to calls from other submitters to exchange the word ‘woman’ for ‘person’ throughout the bill. Jan is a supporter of the feminist group Speak Up For Women and has recently written an excellent ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • My loyal readership of … Cam girls and Pornbots?
    I checked my traffic stats:I was intrigued by 'monica29' - who was this very dedicated individual?  I clicked on the link, to be greeted with ...Ho, hum.Spreadin' the word, spreadin' the word.  Doesn't matter who hears it, as long as it gets out there. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Worth repeating forever
    There have been three polls since the election was announced, and I will shamelessly steal YouGov / UK Polling Report's Anthony Wells' summary of them:Survation – CON 34%, LAB 26%, LDEM 19%, BREX 12%, GRN 1% Ipsos MORI – CON 41%, LAB 24%, LDEM 20%, BREX 7%, GRN 3% YouGov ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Lutte Ouvriere on the explosion in Chile
    The following article is translated from Lutte Ouvrière, the weekly newspaper of the organisation usually known by the same name in France. When, for the second time this year, Chilean President Piñera announced an increase in the price of Metro tickets from 800 to 830 pesos, students in the high ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Wage theft – I’m fucking over it.
    Today, a worker contacted me asking if she could go to the police over her employer stealing thousands of dollars from her in unpaid wages. The employer also did not pay this worker’s taxes or student loan which amounts to tax fraud. As a workers rights activist, who founded the ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 weeks ago
  • On The Rebound.
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered, They're Yours: Is there any person more vulnerable than a jilted lover on the rebound? Or, anything more certain than that the charmer, the predator, the glib spinner of lies and promises will seek such broken people out? Yes, of course, he will love every one of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Rabbi urges congregation to vote against Corbyn
    Though Jonathan Romain is a fairly high profile Rabbi, writing in several papers and popping up on TV and the radio, this story doesn't seem to have made it to the Guardian yet, so I'll take the unusual step of linking the Stephen Pollard edited Jewish Chronicle:Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • My absurdly optimistic prediction
    There's an election afoot, and that is when noted opinion formers such as myself get to make wild fools of ourselves by pretending we have the faintest idea what will happen.So, here is my absurdly optimistic prediction:Labour - 285Conservative - 262SNP - 53Lib Dems - 20PC - 5Ireland - 18 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • October ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image Credit: Increase Social Media Traffic & Website Traffic 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 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A mountain of a challenge in banning glyphosate
    Belinda Cridge I was reading my son a story last night. A great tale of derring-do of five mountaineers scaling the Matterhorn for the first time. One in the party had tried six times previously and failed, this was the last attempt before winter closed another season. They tried a ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago

  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    16 hours ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    2 days ago
  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    6 days ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    7 days ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    1 week ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    1 week ago
  • Week That Was: 2,000 teachers in two years
    We began the week by commemorating the New Zealand Wars and celebrating a major increase in the number of teachers. Then, we were busy supporting offenders into work and getting our rail back on track after years of underinvestment. And that's just the start! ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winning an election one conversation at a time
    In October I was sworn in as the Mayor of Lower Hutt. It’s the privilege of my life to serve Hutt people as their Mayor. There is something really special to be able to serve the community where I was raised, and where I live.   ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Closer cooperation with Korean horse racing industry
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters met with Korea Racing Authority Chairperson Nak Soon Kim in Seoul today to discuss closer cooperation between the New Zealand and Korean horse racing industries. As part of the visit to the Seoul Racecourse, Mr Peters witnessed ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Otago to lead digital creativity
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10 million to establish Otago as the centre of New Zealand’s creative digital industry over the next ten years, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “The initiative will bring us closer to the vision of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Young Otago students encouraged to take on forestry careers
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF)’s skills and employment programme will help young Otago people into long-term forestry careers, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Te Ara Mahi will invest $63,000 in the 2020 school year to support eight 17 and 18 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF backing Dunedin’s waterfront ambitions
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will support local plans to revitalise and stimulate economic development opportunities in Otago, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The four Regional Economic Development Ministers have approved an in-principle investment of $19.9 million towards the region’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • M. Bovis eradication progress welcomed
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is pleased to have received the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) report on the Coalition Government’s Mycoplasma bovis eradication efforts, which shows significant progress in the fight against the disease. New Zealand First Spokesperson for Primary Industries, Mark Patterson, says the report’s findings ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF boosts Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sector
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development Hon David Parker, Minister for Trade and Export Growth The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing to support economic growth opportunities for Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sectors, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Trade and Export Minister David Parker announced today. Almost $20 million ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister Peters discusses Pacific challenges and denuclearisation in Seoul
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters and his South Korean counterpart, Kang Kyung-wha, discussed in Seoul today opportunities to work more closely in the Pacific and the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Mr Peters and Minister Kang confirmed New Zealand and the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF supports high speed broadband for marae at Parihaka Pa
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development  Hon Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Māori Development The three marae in the historic Parihaka Pa complex in Taranaki have been upgraded to high speed broadband with the support of the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “Connecting the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advancing Pacific Partnerships 2019 launched
    Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence Minister of Defence Ron Mark will today launch the Advancing Pacific Partnerships 2019 Defence Assessment  during a speech at Te Papa.  The Assessment outlines how Defence will partner with our Pacific Island neighbours and invest in Pacific regional security architecture. The Plan aligns with the Coalition ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF funding could transform Gisborne company into “beacon of employment” in two years
    A new Provincial Growth Fund investment could create about 80 new jobs in Gisborne over the next two years, turning a local small business into a “beacon of employment” in the process. Regional Economic Development Parliamentary Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau said the PGF’s Te Ara Mahi funding stream would provide $1.6m ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Disability Action Plan 2019 – 2023
    “The new Disability Action Plan 2019–2023 moves us towards the inclusive and accessible New Zealand that this government has committed to,” Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today.  “The Action Plan was designed by disabled people, their family and supporters, the disability sector and government agencies. It will ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Joint Statement – Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting
    Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting 14 November 2019 Joint Statement 1. Defence Ministers Ron Mark and Dr Ng Eng Hen today conducted their third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting in Singapore. 2. Building on the Enhanced Partnership signed between both countries in May this year, this annual meeting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Sexual Violence Legislation Bill has its first reading
    A Bill to improve the court system’s response to sexual violence has passed its first reading in Parliament today. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Sexual Violence Legislation Bill will reduce the trauma sexual violence complainants experience in court, while maintaining defendants’ fundamental rights and making sure the trial process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Streamlined business invoicing a step closer
    Streamlined payment practices are a step closer for Kiwi businesses with the formal launch of New Zealand’s e-Invoicing framework. Small Business Minister Stuart Nash says the government has now established the structure to enable automated and direct data exchange between the accounting systems of buyers and sellers. “The move to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • More frontline biosecurity officers protecting NZ
    Another 51 quarantine officers and four new biosecurity detector dog teams will help protect New Zealand from invasive pests and diseases this summer, says Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “The Government is delivering on its commitment to strengthen New Zealand’s biosecurity system and support our valuable primary sector “New Zealand’s flora, fauna ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • NZ space economy worth $1.69 billion
    A new report has found New Zealand’s space sector contributed $1.69 billion to the economy in the last financial year and employs 12,000 people, Minister for Economic Development Phil Twyford announced today. The report by Deloitte was commissioned by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and shows New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • New Chair for Royal Commission into Abuse
    Judge Coral Shaw has been appointed as the new Chair of the Royal Commission into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-based Institutions, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. "Judge Shaw, who is currently one of the inquiry commissioners, is extremely well qualified for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Better mental health facilities for Palmerston North
    The Government has confirmed its third major mental health facility upgrade since the Budget, this time at Palmerston North Hospital. The Prime Minister and Health Minister today visited MidCentral DHB to announce that $30 million has been allocated to upgrade its acute mental health facility. It follows earlier announcements in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Bowel Screening hits halfway point
    The roll out of the National Bowel Screening Programme has reached the halfway mark, with 10 out of 20 District Health Boards now part of the programme. MidCentral DHB, which covers Palmerston North, Manawatu and surrounding districts, this week became the latest to DHB to offer free bowel screening to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • More vaccines for meningococcal disease
    The Government welcomes PHARMAC’s decision to fund a vaccine to protect young people from meningococcal disease from 1 December this year. “Meningococcal disease is a serious threat which people at higher risk should be protected from,” says Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter. “The combined pharmaceutical budget was increased by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Fisheries innovation projects supported
    Groups involved with innovative fisheries research projects are encouraged to apply for government support in the latest funding round from the Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures programme. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash says the SFF Futures funding is designed to be flexible enough to support small or large projects across a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government fixes culturally arranged marriage visa issue
    The Government has fixed an issue affecting how Immigration New Zealand has processed visa applications for culturally arranged marriages, which will now see a consistent process applied which ensures people with legitimate arranged marriages can visit New Zealand while also preventing any rorting of the system. Earlier this year Immigration ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Extension for Royal Commission into Mosque attacks
    The Royal Commission into the Attacks on Christchurch Mosques will report back on 30 April 2020 to give it more time to hear submissions and consider information, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. The Royal Commission was originally scheduled to report back to Government by 10 December 2019. “There has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Terrorism and Trade on agenda as Foreign Minister visits the United States
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington DC today to attend a ministerial meeting focused on defeating ISIS, and to continue pursuing New Zealand’s trade opportunities. Mr Peters will participate in a meeting of Foreign and Defence Ministers from key countries contributing to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Hoiho get extra support alongside 168 community conservation groups backing nature
    The recently crowned Bird of the Year, the hoiho/yellow eyed penguin, is getting a much needed helping hand alongside more than 168 other community conservation projects announced Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage today. 168 community conservation projects throughout New Zealand are benefiting from $8 million in government grants, including $500,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New safety measures for modified pistols
    Controls on assault rifles and semi-automatic firearms are to be broadened to include some types of pistols, under changes to a bill currently making its way through Parliament. Police Minister Stuart Nash has tabled a Supplementary Order Paper to the Arms Legislation Bill, which is currently before a Select Committee ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister of Defence to visit Singapore and Thailand
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark will travel to Singapore today to conduct a counterpart visit and to co-chair the third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting with his counterpart, Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen. “Singapore is one of our most important defence partners in the region, and our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Future secured for Salisbury School
    Nelson’s Salisbury School is to be rebuilt, creating a modern and suitable learning environment for students at the residential special school, Education Minister Chris Hipkins and Associate Education Minister Tracey Martin announced today. The school for girls aged 8-15, in Richmond, was earmarked for closure by National until the process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Resource management reform options released
    The panel undertaking a comprehensive review of the Resource Management Act has identified the main issues to be addressed and options for reform and is calling for feedback to inform its final report.  In July the Government announced the comprehensive review of the resource management system, including the RMA - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission established
    An important safety valve has been added to New Zealand’s criminal justice system with the third reading of the Criminal Cases Review Commission Bill today. The Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) will investigate claimed miscarriages of justice. “We’ve seen how our justice system can very occasionally get things spectacularly wrong, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Racing Industry destined to be on-track
    Racing Minister Winston Peters welcomes the tabling of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) 2019 Annual Report in Parliament today. He says the 2019 Annual Report marks the point when New Zealand’s racing industry’s decline was arrested and a turnaround started. RITA’s 2019 Annual Report recorded an industry net profit ...
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    2 days ago
  • New Zealand firefighter support to Queensland
    The New Zealand Government is today sending 21 firefighters to help fight the ongoing catastrophic Australian bushfires. “The fires in Australia are in some of the toughest, most challenging conditions ever,” says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin.  “As of yesterday morning, there were 100 active bushfire-related incidents across Queensland and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Supporting all schools to succeed
      More frontline support for schools through a new education agency, as part of a redesigned Ministry of Education More support for principals and school boards including through a new centre of leadership and local leadership advisor roles New independent disputes panels for parents and students Management of school property ...
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    3 days ago
  • Reform to support better outcomes for Māori learners and whānau
    The Government’s reform of the Tomorrow’s Schools system is a watershed moment in education and an opportunity to create meaningful change for ākonga Māori and their whānau, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis said today. “Last year through Kōrero Mātauranga | Education Conversation, Māori teachers, parents, ākonga, whānau, hapū and iwi ...
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    3 days ago
  • Infrastructure pipeline growing
    Infrastructure Minister is welcoming the first of many updated project pipelines from the newly established New Zealand Infrastructure Commission today. The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga, has released an expanded pipeline of major capital projects – another crucial step towards delivering better infrastructure outcomes. “The first iteration of the ...
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    3 days ago
  • Tighter firearms law to further improve safety
    Tougher gun laws designed to improve public safety through firearms prohibition orders are proposed in a new document released for public input. Police Minister Stuart Nash says firearms prohibition orders (FPOs) would give new powers to Police to ensure high-risk individuals come nowhere near firearms. “We have already prohibited the ...
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    3 days ago
  • New TVNZ chair & directors confirmed
    Andy Coupe has been confirmed as TVNZ’s new Board Chair. “Mr Coupe has strong commercial and capital markets experience and TVNZ has benefited from his technical knowledge of business and finance, as well as his extensive governance experience,” the Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Kris Faafoi said.  Andy ...
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    3 days ago
  • Hutt Road cycle path officially opened
    Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter today officially opened a separated pathway, following the completion of the Kaiwharawhara Stream bridge, which will improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians along Hutt Road.  The $6.8m Hutt Road project provides a separated path for cycling and pedestrians, the replacement of informal parking ...
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    4 days ago
  • Announcement of new Ambassador to Russia
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of career diplomat Si’alei van Toor as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Russia. “I’m pleased to appoint Ms van Toor to this position. She brings a wealth of experience to the role having previously served as Senior Trade Adviser to the ...
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    6 days ago
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update
    The Treasury’s 2019 Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) will be released on Wednesday December 11, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Coalition Government will publish the 2020 Budget Policy Statement at the same time, outlining the priorities for Budget 2020. Further details on arrangements for the release will ...
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    7 days ago
  • Giving a Boost to Kiwi small businesses
    A new initiative to better support small businesses through hands-on mentoring and advice has been launched by the Minister for Small Business. The first event in the Kiwi Business Boost series of regional workshops and online tools has been launched in Wairoa by Stuart Nash. “The Business Boost initiative combines ...
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    7 days ago
  • Nearly three quarters of Rolleston connected to UFB
    The latest Quarterly Connectivity Report shows that more and more New Zealanders are moving to Ultra-fast Broadband (UFB), with Rolleston having the highest uptake at 74 per cent, as at the end of September. “This means that nearly three quarters of Rolleston’s households and businesses have moved to ultra-fast services. ...
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    7 days ago
  • Historic day for landmark climate change legislation in New Zealand
    The passing of the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill will help ensure a safe planet for our kids and grandkids, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw said today. The landmark legislation which provides a framework to support New Zealanders to prepare for, and adapt to, the effects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Release of Oranga Tamariki Practice Review
    The review of Oranga Tamariki practice around the planned uplift of a Hastings baby in May shows significant failings by the Ministry and that the planned and funded changes to shift from a child crisis service to a proper care and protection service need to be accelerated, Children’s Minister Tracey ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister wishes students success in exams
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins has wished students the best of luck for this year’s NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams which start tomorrow. Around 140,000 students will have participated in 119 NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams by the end of the exam period on 3 December. “I want to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New High Commissioner to the United Kingdom announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of Bede Corry as New Zealand’s next High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. “The appointment of a senior diplomat to this important role underlines the significance New Zealand places on our relationship with the United Kingdom,” said Mr Peters. “The United ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Police recruits making Auckland safer
    An innovative approach to boosting the number of frontline Police has seen 20 new officers graduate from one of the uncommon training wings in Auckland. Police Minister Stuart Nash says the graduation of 20 constables today means that 1,765 new Police officers have been deployed since the coalition government took ...
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    1 week ago
  • Over 1.2 million hours of community work helps local communities
    Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says the 1.2 million hours of community work completed by offenders in the last financial year has helped local communities right across the country. “Community work sentences are a great way for people to pay something positive back to society. There is a massive benefit to ...
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    1 week ago
  • Te Huringa o Te Tai – Police Crime Prevention Strategy
    "A pathway for Police in leadership with Iwi Māori, to achieve the aspirations of Māori whānau." Police launch of Te Huringa o Te Tai, Pipitea Marae,  Thorndon Quay, Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou. Hello everyone, warm greetings to you all. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Kiwis getting higher pay
    Working New Zealanders are getting more in their back pockets under the Coalition Government’s economic plan. Stats NZ data today shows average weekly ordinary time earnings are up by $83 since the Government took office. This shows that working New Zealanders are getting higher take-home pay, and that employers are ...
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    1 week ago