Mental Health Break

Fundraising ideas for Labour, let’s help a comrade out


Let’s face it, when it comes to fundraising the Labour party lack entrepreneurship  almost as badly as they lack funds. In an insincere gesture of cross-party cooperation I thought we could put our collective heads together to help our Labour Party comrades out.

I have a few product suggestions which I hope you will all add to in the comments.

Read more »

Map of the Day

More sunlight required

Guest post

Is NZ Post Telling Porkies?

I saw an Item on TV3’s Story the other night about a bunch of people living in a small rural pace called Karitane. They are having a problem with NZ Post. I normally avoid the MSM but this one caught my eye.

Their promo for the article:

“The small town of Karitane, north of Dunedin, is on the verge of revolution. Residents have always picked their mail up from the local dairy.

It means the town can collect their mail and socialise at the same time.

But now New Zealand Post wants to start delivering to people’s homes, much like the rest of New Zealand, and the town is not happy.

There’s also a problem: no one has letterboxes in Karitane, because no one has ever had their mail delivered.”

The people are quite justifiably angry that NZ Post wants to change a system that works well, into a standard mailbox drop. Something doesn’t smell right, and sadly, the journalists didn’t ask the right questions of NZ Post. Instead, they delivered a nice fluffy piece about village life in a small but lovely South Island town.

So let’s do what they should have done:

The issue, NZ Post wants to change from mail being left at the local dairy for people to pick up as a “care of” type set up. Let’s ignore the touchy feely of social things and stick to facts. NZ Post says they have a software issue that doesn’t allow for that to work anymore and has given them notice of changing to mailbox delivery.

Read more »

When neither the truth nor a lie will suffice

In politics, it is important you control the message.  Telling the truth, or lying, is almost always less desirable, as two MPs found out this week.

Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei was telling the truth as she saw it, that in order to improve affordability of housing, house prices needed to fall by up to 50 per cent. She didn’t say they needed to fall fast. In fact she said they needed to fall gradually to prevent a crash.

But she didn’t think it through and Labour was smeared with it, less than two months into the memorandum of understanding between the two parties.

Disregarding the political carelessness of her comments, they also breached the agreement because Labour was not warned in advance that Turei was going to posit such a controversial policy. Andrew Little and John Key seized on them.

Little needed to distance himself quickly from the Green policy. The only thing scarier than the prospect of falling house values for a home-owner is a politician with a plan for falling house values – and Labour cannot be associated with that plan.

Home ownership rates have been declining, but at 63 per cent, it is still a significant group whose sense of present and future security is tied up in property.

The problem here is that the Greens don’t understand where half of their support comes from.  It is because they can’t stand to think about it.  Liberal guilt, mostly female, mostly in relationships with successful men.  But they are home owners, and they are not going to put up with the Greens taking their security blankie away.  Read more »

Danyl should stick to analysis

Danyl at the Dimpost is one of the few on the left capable of seeing through to fog and having the courage to share what he sees in public

Gordon Campbell has a Roland Barthes-based theory on John Key’s enduring popularity (Key is actually less popular than his party nowadays). I’ve had a non post-structuralist theory about the dynamics of New Zealand politics for a while:

  • The two left-wing opposition parties (Labour and the Greens) aren’t competing against the government in any substantive sense. They’re competing against each other for the same reasonably small pool of university educated urban liberal voters.
  • The reasons for this are partly strategic but mostly cultural: both parties are dominated by members of this small but influential class.
  • So policy and messaging are both directed at them and not at the much larger pool of centrist soft National voters. Which is why Labour spent the first half of the year talking about free university degrees, a universal basic income and medicinal pot, issues of little valence to middle New Zealand but endless fascination to left-wing intellectuals. Read more »

Photo of the Day

drawingPleasant Ridge, OH Outhouse Floor Collapses, Sep 1904

About Thirty one rambunctious schoolgirls, a sudden rainstorm, and a mad dash for the outhouse. This does not end well, but does contain remarkable acts of heroism and self-sacrifice

Cincinnati, Sept. 23. — Nine little girls were suffocated in a vault, and a score of others narrowly escaped the same horrible death, at the school at Pleasant Ridge, seven miles north of this city, today. The disaster occurred at the forenoon recess, and throughout the remainder of the day the village was wild with excitement, sorrow and indignation. Tonight those who openly charge the calamity to official negligence are making serious threats, among them being many women.

All of the victims were from primary grades.

On opposite sides of the grounds in the rear of the school building are two outhouses. At recess about thirty of the smaller girls were in the outhouse assigned to them, when suddenly the floor gave way, precipitating them into the vault below. This vault is twelve feet deep and walled up with stone like a well. It contained four feet of water, which would have been over the heads of the children had they fallen into it singly, but those who fell first partially filled up the vault, so that the others were not entirely submerged.

The girls fell eight feet from the floot, and the struggling of those on top kept at least nine under water until they were dead. The frame sheds of these vaults were about twenty feet square, without windows, and only one narrow doorway, so that one girl escaped from the door. She ran into the school building and told the teachers what had happened. The principal and other teachers rushed to the rescue. The screams of the girls in the vault were faintly heard, and most of them were unable to speak when rescued. The teachers were soon reinforced by the entire population of the village, the police and fire departments rendering effective service. The firemen drained the vault, to be sure that the rescue was complete.
Those engaged in the rescue work tell of ghastly experiences. Even those rescued alive presented such an appearance as to make many of the spectators faint, but the sight within the vault beggared all description.

Read more »

Waikato academic puts Maori child abuse at the feet of being colonised

leonie pihama 1

Waikato Associate Professor Leonie Pihama / Waatea News

It’s not a new argument, and it perpetuates the ability for Maori to be victims and not take personal responsibility for atrocious acts of violence.

What happened to the indigenous peoples when Romans colonised them?  Did they all of a sudden start abusing their children?   What about the Saxons who were colonised by the Normans?   Or the Britons colonised by the Saxons… or the Saxons colonised by the Vikings… the whole of Europe must have turned into a child murdering mess.

Nearly half of all children in the child victim toll are Maori.

There’s a reason for that, says Waikato Associate Professor Leonie Pihama. It’s called colonisation.

All indigenous peoples around the world who were colonised show the same problems. And the government fixes are all based on the same white man’s model, she says.

“Things like smacking children for speaking Te Reo Maori, that came in with the 1867 Native Schools Act, where we began to see a denial of Maori language in schools. So from that point, we began to see generations that are told they can’t speak.

“Colonisation impacts on our children through the removal of every part of our cultural framework that enabled us to keep our children safe. And I think that model of the nuclear family, the domestic unit, is actually an unhealthy model for a culture of people who are used to having a collective relationship.

“Historical trauma caused by colonisation is the root cause of intergenerational issues, particularly child abuse within Maori families,” Pihama said.

Solutions needed to focus on reconnecting Maori, she said.

“We can run all the parenting programmes we like – they come out of America, they come out of England – but they reproduce the same structures that create the poverty and create the abuse that ruin.

“None of them challenge the idea of a nuclear family. None of them challenge the broader collective way of being. They are all about individuals. None of them draw on reconnecting people to the land, or reconnecting people to their traditional knowledge, or reconnecting people to language.”

So forgetting how they are connected to Maoridom turns more Maori into child killers than any other race.  And the reason they are not able to realise their Maori potential is the “White man”.  Read more »

Whaloil News Quiz

Some respite on the housing crisis as Murray McCully gives Labour a free hit

Murray McCully

Foreign Minister Murray McCully recently met the Saudi businessman at the centre of a controversial farm deal being probed by the Auditor-General.

Treasury documents released under the Official Information Act yesterday reveal McCully met up with Hmood Al Khalaf in April.

They also reveal further Treasury concerns about the controversial ‘agri-hub’ project being investigated by Auditor-General Lyn Provost.

Ahead of a trip to Saudi Arabia McCully’s office said the minister had no scheduled meetings with Al Khalaf.

However, the newly-released papers show the Saudi businessman travelled to Riyadh to attend a function aimed at furthering business links between the countries and hosted by McCully.

They had a discussion that was “regarded as being very beneficial to the ongoing partnership,” according to minutes from the agri-hub’s governance group, which includes a Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade official.

As more paperwork is coming out, it Mr Mac is starting to realise his goose is cooked.   The minutiae isn’t very appetising, but it doesn’t allow him much wiggle room when it comes to accusations that the New Zealand government essentially handed over a ‘facilitation payment’ while no credible legal threat existed.  Read more »