The Daily Blog Watch – 30/31 January 2014

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Today’s Daily Blog Watch Round-Up of matters that have attracted the attention, assessments, and articulations of this country’s leading bloggers and on-line satirists…

NZ Left Blogosphere

On Fightback, Byron presents a report on 300 hotel workers strike in Fiji. The strikes were held after manby of their staff benefits were taken away, including .  maternity leave and overtime pay entitlements.

Nice to see workers with the balls to stand up to employers’ wankery.

Matt L presents some interesting images of the Waterview Tunnel Photos on the Transport Blog – a few of which look amazingly like scenes from a sf epic. Then again, it is the year 2014AD…

TDB Recommends NewzEngine.com

Idiot Savant on No Right Turn reports on Our unhealthy political landscape,

“Yesterday the Libertarianz, one of our longer-lasting and more active minor parties, was deregistered at its own request, presumably because it no longer meets the requirement of having 500 members.”

It’s intriguing that the Left can be concerned at the demise of a far right political entity…

Would Whaleoil, Kiwiblog, or Cactus Kate shed a tear or lament at the impending disappearance of the last vestiges of The Alliance?

My money (all $9.90 of it) is a firm “Fuck no!”.

Also by Savant, is the Challenging the “Pacific solution”

“Since 2012, refugees seeking asylum in Australia have instead been dumped on Nauru and Papua New Guinea in appalling and inhumane conditions. But for some of them, that may be about to change: Papua New Guinea’s Supreme Court has ruled that asylum seekers detained there may challenge their detention under PNG’s constitution…”

If you’re interested, you can Download The Fluoride Debate from Open Parachute. It features a debate from the Pro and Con side, and may actually be a fairly civilised debate.

On Kiwipolitico, Pablo asks Why Does Class Matter? Contemplating Left praxis in a po-mo age,

My posts on the demise of the political Left in NZ have elicited a fair bit of debate, which is good. However, there are two main areas of misunderstanding in the debate that need to be corrected. The first is that that by repeating my oft-stated claim here and elsewhere that socio-economic class, and particularly the working classes, need to be the central focus of Left praxis, I am ignoring the productive and cultural changes of the post-industrial, post-modern era. The second is that I dismiss the entire Left as ineffectual losers.

On Labour’s Red Alert, we have Poto Williams’ maiden speech posted by Clare Curran and Phil Twyford’s masterplan for galactic conquest My 5 point Waitemata Plan,

What could be more liveable than going down to Devonport wharf and catching whitebait as our grandparents’ generation did? Or swimming at city beaches and knowing you won’t pick up a gastro bug even after heavy rains? Or an 8 year old catching koura in the Le Roys stream at Little Shoal Bay? Or the kids of Massey being able to swim in the Manutewhau stream without picking up ear infections? Or Ngati Whatua being able to pick a feed of pipis at Okahu Bay as did generations before?

So what to do about it? Here’s my 5 point plan for the Waitemata, cobbled together while paddling [in a canoe]…

Check out Gareth’s blogpost on Hot Topic, A year’s weather in 8 minutes (and other things).

Science. Is. Cool.

The Pundit’s Tim Watkin has a few thoughts on The hasty NZ flag debate – is this the time and place?

“So, the ol’ flag debate, eh? But is now really the time? And is the process John Key suggested really the best way forward? And as for the silver fern…

Gee, exactly what did Winston Peters give John Key for Christmas? It must have been a doozy of a present, because election year’s barely begun and Key looks to be handing Peters his second boost. Yep, there’s nothing like a flag debate to motivate older voters…”

Read Josie Pagani’s comment on the issue. She’s nailed it!

Regarding the flag thing,  Frankly Speaking has a Letter to the Editor: What taxes John Key’s mind?  and Letter to Radio NZ: Key, the flag, and irrelevancies.

On Frogblog, Eugenie Sage describes Swimming on the Wellington waterfront as practically taking your life in your own hands. Find out why by clicking on the link (it’s a short blogpost).

So this is New Zealand in the 21st Century huh? Quite a deal different from when I was a kid.

Meanwhile,  The Civilian reports on the Upcoming election to overshadow important social, economic issues,

Serious discussions concerning social welfare, education, and the overall health of the economy could take a back seat this year, say political analysts, as they will likely be overshadowed by the upcoming general election.

This year’s election appears set to put Labour opposition leader David Cunliffe up against National Prime Minister John Key, in a gruelling competition to determine who gets to sit on the left side of a small, cramped chamber for the next three years and explain why they’re not doing exactly what they said they would.

And The Standard presents,

 

Tim Watkins has written a piece on Labour’s Best Start policy.

Down in the comments were the most incredible remarks I have read in support of the policies.

They cut through all of criticism of the policy in way which I had not seen before and well, basically, they blew my little mind. The comments were written by Ian Hassall, New Zealand’s first Children’s Commisioner. Here is the exchange between Tim and Ian…

The infotainment, ratings/sales driven basis of our news media, results in the skewing of political news in various ways: whether or not such skewing is intentional.  One of the things the MSM does with this “neoliberal”-supporting approach to news, is to focus on human interest stories.  Following the party leaders State of the Nation speeches, inequality is currently the main focus.

Tangata whenua flag

Election year is now upon us and both National and Labour have started aggressively.

National knows that its prospects for the election are not good.  With no viable coalition partners it has been forced to talk up the Conservative Party and make overtures to NZ First.  Key no longer has the option of pretending to be principled when it comes to doing deals with Winston Peters.

National has also been forced to consider adopting Labour Policy.  Suddenly it supports paid parental leave, and it is working out what is the minimum it can do to  make it look sympathetic yet more fiscally disciplined than Labour.  It obviously understands that supporting rich corporates and not supporting families is political poison.

The cynicism is extreme and voters should be reminded that National voted against Labour’s introduction of paid parental leave in 2002 and also voted against Sue Moroney’s bill in 2012 as well as announcing that it would veto the bill.  Its recent conversion is no doubt due more to focus group data than a real belief that the state should help young families so that their babies have the best start possible.  I am sure that voters can distinguish between the committed and the cynical.

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Right-wing Blogpost of The Day

None of them.

But  Whaleoil is back – kind of.  Is this Whaleoil Beta??

Don’t forget to disinfect after you visit. (If you must.)

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Blogpost of the Day

On Imperator Fish, Scott Yorke paints a picture of Labour’s Policy in tatters – but perhaps not quite as Key would like it,

“Labour’s “Best Start” policy was announced on Monday during David Cunliffe’s State of the Nation speech. But while Labour’s plan to give families of newborn children sixty dollars a week is a bold one, major flaws in the plan are being highlighted by Labour’s opponents on the right, all of whom care deeply about the plight of the poor and are desperate to fix the child poverty problem at any cost.”

LMAO!!

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Thought for the Day

job creators

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~ Joe Blogger,

“The Daily Blog Watch” Editor, Imbiber of Fine Sugary Drinks,  & Moa-whisperer

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~oo~