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

Helen Clark abused Māori, so don’t expect us to line up behind her now

It has been my privilege whilst in Tauranga to work with people and organisations in addressing the scourge of domestic violence in our communities here. In the course of that work, one of the things I have learnt is that often those who abuse their families minimise their abuse. They assert that “it wasn’t that… Read More Helen Clark abused Māori, so don’t expect us to line up behind her now

National Security: an open cheque for the GCSB and SIS

The Review of Intelligence and Security by Sir Michael Cullen and Dame Patsy Reddy is a strange beast. The two eminent reviewers see themselves as proposing a sensible and sober streamlining of our two intelligence services, the Security Intelligence Service (SIS) and the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB). John Key sees the review as having… Read More National Security: an open cheque for the GCSB and SIS

Ah, flag it: the NZ flag referendum is a failure of leadership, not civic engagement

I had not considered writing about the infernal flag referendum because I do not have any great interest in either of the flags currently on offer, nor the four on the first ballot. However, what I do have a great interest in is politics and the smoke bombs being hurled by commentators in the last… Read More Ah, flag it: the NZ flag referendum is a failure of leadership, not civic engagement

Te Ture Whenua Māori Bill: a good idea stuck in a political mire

Te Ture Whenua Māori Bill has been mired in controversy since the first draft came out last year. At the heart of the concern is the lack of consultation by the Crown with current Māori landowners. As the Waitangi Tribunal found in its urgent report on the issue, even though Chris Finlayson and co. don’t… Read More Te Ture Whenua Māori Bill: a good idea stuck in a political mire