Alternative Aotearoa Election 2020 Seminar update


Kia ora everyone,

The day is shaping up extremely well with all the key positions/roles sorted and just waiting to hear back from some organisations to confirm their speakers.

We are delighted to have such an incredible line up of people and groups. Thank you all.

The Social Solutions section has been extended by half an hour due to the wide range of groups keen to contribute.

The seminar will be live-streamed on The Daily Blog.

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Alternative Aotearoa – a one-day seminar to provide solutions for the environmental, social and economic transformation of Aotearoa.

Saturday 25 July, 8.30am Pipitea Marae, Wellington

Keynote speakers:

Laura O’Connell Rapira – Director of Action Station

Efeso Collins – Pasifika community activist and Auckland City Councillor


Julia Whaipooti – Justice Advocate

Martyn Bradbury – Editor of The Daily Blog

Recorders/Collators/Final presenters

Tamatha Paul – Wellington City Councillor

Jane Kelsey – Law Professor University of Auckland

Organisations presenting include:

Greenpeace, Better Futures Forum, School Strike for Climate, Extinction Rebellion, Child Poverty Action Group, State Housing Action Network, Unite Union, Council of Trade Unions, Migrant Workers Association, Just Speak, Pacific Climate Warriors, Quality Public Education Coalition, Action Station, Auckland Action Against Poverty, People Against Prisons Aotearoa and more…


Registration is free but people need to register for catering purposes. A koha will apply for lunch. Register via email to

Media will be invited to attend all day but a specific media conference will be organised for keynote speakers and a presentation of the final summary will be made to the media.

All political parties will be specifically invited to attend and we are also looking to provide individual briefings to the policy committees of all the main political parties (National, Labour, Greens, New Zealand First etc) following the seminar.




  1. Excellent work John.

    The political priority for the NZ people in 2020 has to be rolling back neo liberalism in all its forms.

  2. tena koe John
    is anyone going to be talking about job gaurantee policies?
    imagine a world where anyone who is unemployed can voluntarily sign up to the public service, for a living wage. and since it is administered at the local level, that pool of workers could be available to hire for services within their communities that wouldnt be offered via the market system. precarioous jobs would disappear as they would have to compete with the living wage. and lots of local economic development potential. could be a gateway into employment for youth. gateway into self-employment or small business…..
    some arguing that this is preferable to UBI: throwing jobs at the problem rather than throwing money.
    be great to see this discussed.

    • Hello John. Your idea sounds great cushla. Local initiatives could be tried that were precarious jobs, and with certain conditions would be tested as business or job possibilities under this system. People enrolled for work and guaranteed basic income, would be asked to take on certain number of these per year, for which they were suited, as part of their contract to receive the wage. In that way all sorts of things could get done, and people socialise, and be part of a valued set of the community.b I’ve been part of a green dollars scheme and found there has to be a minimum obligation for input or the community scheme isn’t kept vibrant,

      Based on my observation, everyone should have to do something, the young and the old, the disabled whatever, even for an hour a week. Everyone has something good that they can do, and then everyone both gives and gets respected, socialised, doesn’t become snooty and superior – lots of NZ like watching others perform, do the mahi, but won’t do anything for the community, only when it provides something they personally. The obligation aspect should be discussed, we need to be bound to promises to each other, working in together.

      And to marry to that statement, can money be discussed recognising it as essential to keep money as cash that ordinary people can exchange, with talk about M1 and M2 levels just to understand how use of money separates out into different uses. Wages etc, and then other uses, big purchases like cars, houses. And make the point that we all forget what money actually is and why it is so useful. It is a system accepted by all, and set in law, with values that are maintained by certain agreed methods – and all it is, is a tangible, individual set of promises that act as present and future credits to be paid. The value of the promise to pay is according to the agreement when it is exchanged, and we use coins with numbers indicating the number of credits that it represents. Paper, printed cardboard, wood etc. can be used – or could be when cheques were exchanged. (The SBS, or Southland Building Society bank) keeps accepting cheques because its customers want them!

      If we can get a reliable system going in local areas that can act as adjunct to Kiwi dollars and so people who are poor, can raise their standard of living beyond the Kiwi dollars, by exchanging local dollars (they could be called TINS for Tangible Individual Number System or something that would fold into a recognised positive acronym). These could count as discounts in the accounts of the local traders, or part of revenue that the IRD recognises but doesn’t company tax. I think that they might have to incur the GST on the full price, so there would always be 15% received by government thus having a place in the tax system, and not being regarded as blackmarket transactions etc.) It must not be dismissed as Green $ as this would have set principles and understandings; I found that Green $ had many understandings, and the system could change with each change of committee. This would have to be run by Council, perhaps with trials by a group of local Councils to get it right, and then overseen by the Local Government body which needs to utilise all its expertise and respect for local people’s conditions.

      Central government is dumping its work on autonomous agencies and becoming distant from service to the people, almost redundant. I was Local Government to pick up the ball, and set templates for good management that people like and respect, face to face stuff.

      • not my idea. its being put forward by economists. nice to see some come out of the dark and start talking to the public about anti-neoliberal ideas and policies.

  3. As expressed in earlier blogs, this conference is a promising undertaking. Compliments to the organizers.

    Having had a glance over the draft agenda, it appears that the overarching rationale, the intertwined logic, the scientific reasoning and final justification for ‘Transformation of Aotearoa’ does not become sufficiently evident.

    All outputs from the seminar must be seen as flow toward actual and anticipated consequences of climate change, ecological destruction and exploitation of ‘natural resources’, including human society.

    System Change. Now.

    As it looks at present, there is the risk that the seminar develops into something like a “catalog of concerns among selected actors in the AO/NZ civil society”.

    From my point of view this would aim far too low…

    Nonetheless, a great approach.

    • Yes my feeling too. Good feelings, thoughts – then practical ways to convert them into action, with even one small positive outcome that can be seen and then the ‘optics’ of it will be understood. (Had to throw the latest jargon in, just to show if I’m not with it, I’m somewhere near it.)


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