The New Zealand left is a zoo, not a viable alternative in this election

I want change this election. I long for a left leaning government that dials back some of the damage to our communities after nine long years of National: more funding for desperate NGOs; a coherent climate change strategy; transport solutions beyond roads; housing and a safety net for the poor; a review of our settlement… Read More The New Zealand left is a zoo, not a viable alternative in this election

Raging at Metiria is not about the fraud; it’s that she sided with the lepers

In case you missed it, at the Greens annual conference in mid-July, Metiria fronted the launch of an impressive welfare policy, Mending the Safety Net. During that launch, she used an anecdote from 25 years ago to personalise the policy; when she was solo mum she didn’t tell Work and Income that she had flatmates… Read More Raging at Metiria is not about the fraud; it’s that she sided with the lepers

Where there’s smoke, there’s… ahi kaa? Agreements made by Hauraki & Ranginui

I’ve spent the last two days on the paepae at Poutūterangi Marae in Te Puna, supporting my Bidois whānau who are grieving a lost brother. We are between two storm fronts, so Rangi Pōtiki is an endless blue, Hinemoana is a quiet lapping presence and Papa is a rich healthy green with mid-Winter rains, and… Read More Where there’s smoke, there’s… ahi kaa? Agreements made by Hauraki & Ranginui

Polling won’t help you find courage: lessons from the UK for NZ Labour

You would get short odds predicting the NZ Labour party are analysing the British election like Game of Thrones fans analyse the Season 7 trailers. I can’t recall one column, opinion piece or interview from anyone in the NZ Labour party prior to the British election that suggested it was possible a Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour… Read More Polling won’t help you find courage: lessons from the UK for NZ Labour

Why not talk to us, we’ll still be here in 2040: raising the entitlement age for Super

So Bill finally came through on his “wait and see” with an announcement that the age of entitlement will be raised from 65 to 67 years in 2040. After which various political parties lost their collective rag either because it wasn’t high enough or soon enough, or more commonly because Bill wasn’t thinking of the… Read More Why not talk to us, we’ll still be here in 2040: raising the entitlement age for Super

A developer’s wet dream: even with concessions, the RMA reforms are an environmental disaster

In an example of life imitating art, the Resource Legislation Amendment Bill has been resuscitated like every big screen Marvel character you thought had died (except Quicksilver. No great loss). This bill to amend the Resource Management Act has been a source of some embarrassment to the Government as it asphyxiated in the Select Committee.… Read More A developer’s wet dream: even with concessions, the RMA reforms are an environmental disaster

Local body elections; not the best elections, but the only one we’ve got for now

At the start of the run up to the local body elections here in Tauranga Moana, I had imagined providing a bit of a precis of all the candidates standing for the Tauranga City Council, for Tauranga mayor, the Regional Council and for the DHB. Then I started looking at Facebook pages and websites and… Read More Local body elections; not the best elections, but the only one we’ve got for now

The right issue, the wrong voice: the Kermadecs and Te Ohu Kaimoana

The Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary is a proposed marine sanctuary that will cover 620,000 square kilometres; for comparison, that is 35 times larger than the combined area of Aotearoa New Zealand’s existing 44 marine reserves and would mean 15 percent of our ocean environment is fully protected. The Kermadecs are about 1,000 kilometres from Aotearoa New… Read More The right issue, the wrong voice: the Kermadecs and Te Ohu Kaimoana

Our ghosts have never slept: a response to Chris Trotter on the NZ Wars

Let me say upfront that Chris Trotter’s column in the Stuff is far more nuanced than the headline “Sleeping ghosts don’t need to be woken” suggests. He also asks some important questions as to what it may mean for Pākehā to commemorate the New Zealand Wars when faced with the uncomfortable reality of the causes… Read More Our ghosts have never slept: a response to Chris Trotter on the NZ Wars