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The Political Logic Of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

By   /  July 3, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  22 Comments

Red-baiting is about to get a new lease on life.

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Employers On The Warpath

By   /  June 29, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  12 Comments

He’s a weak link that Iain Lees-Galloway. Ever since he backed away from his party’s solemn promise to repeal the hated “Hobbit Law”, it’s been clear that the guy isn’t what you’d call a tower of union-backing strength. Word is that the MBIE bureaucrats had him house-trained in a matter of days.

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Father Of Nightmares

By   /  June 28, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  68 Comments

Trump’s press secretary, Sarah Sanders, is asked to leave the Little Red Hen restaurant in Virginia and liberal America cheers. But then the awful thought strikes them. What if Trump’s supporters decide to do something similar?

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Does The National Party Know Anything About Genuine Conservatism?

By   /  June 25, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  21 Comments

IF THE NATIONAL PARTY was a genuine conservative party, Simon Bridges would no longer be its leader. In a genuine conservative party, the outcry against his performance on Radio Hauraki last Friday (22/6/18) would have extracted his resignation within 24 hours. A great many voices would have joined the outcry against Bridges’ boorish denigration of the prime minister and her family, and for a great many reasons. Let’s examine just a few of them.

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Emotion, Not Reason, Is Driving New Zealanders’ Attitudes Towards Crime And Punishment

By   /  June 22, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  8 Comments

It was the famous English jurist, Sir William Blackstone, who said: “It is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.” It is perhaps the greatest achievement of New Zealand’s Sensible Sentencing Trust that the present reality of dozens of innocent persons spending months in remand cells for offences they will later be acquitted of does not enrage the New Zealand public. Their motto would appear to be: “It is better that ten innocent people remain locked-up than that one guilty person re-offends on bail.”

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New Zealand’s Very Own Pinkertons

By   /  June 20, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  12 Comments

THE POLITICAL SCANDAL swirling around the private detective agency Thompson & Clark Investigations Ltd (TCIL) lays bare capitalism’s rawest nerves.

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Can The Nurses Win On Their Own?

By   /  June 19, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  33 Comments

In an economy where roughly half the paid workforce have not had a pay-rise for close to two years, will the Nurses’ Organisation’s demand for an immediate, across the board, 11 percent increase strike the average Kiwi as “about right” or “too much”. With an experienced registered nurse’s salary set to rise from $66,755 to $77,386 by December next year under the present offer, will the two-thirds of workers who earn considerably less than that sum (in 2016 the median NZ income was just $48,800) regard the union’s proposed strike action as reasonable – or unreasonable?

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If Labour Wants Fewer Prisoners, Then It Needs To Create More Prison Space – Not Less

By   /  June 15, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  30 Comments

STUPIDITY ON STILTS. How else should the decision-making on Waikeria Prison be characterised. From practically every perspective, the Labour-led government’s determination not to proceed with the construction of a new 3,000-bed “mega-prison” was flawed. Most particularly (and most worryingly) it demonstrated the Cabinet’s inability to think politically. When your business is politics-at-the-highest-level, that’s a very serious flaw indeed.

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What’s Wrong With The Progressive Movement’s Bloody Ships?

By   /  June 14, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  59 Comments

ABOUT THE TIME the second of Britain’s battle cruisers exploded, Vice-Admiral Beatty famously remarked: “There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today.” Trying to make sense of the political passivity of New Zealanders in the twenty-first century, I am often minded of Beatty’s words at the Battle of Jutland. Throughout the vicious class warfare of the past 35 years there does, indeed, seem to be something “wrong” with the progressive movement’s bloody ships!

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What They Do In The Shadows: Winston Saves Labour From Itself

By   /  June 12, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  26 Comments

THANK GOD FOR WINSTON PETERS! The decision of the NZ First Party to torpedo the Labour Party justice minister’s proposal to scrap the “Three Strikes” legislation came in the very nick of time. Andrew Little may be a good man, and Sir Peter Gluckman a powerful advocate for evidence-based decision-making, but neither of them would appear to possess Peters’ gut instinct for what is – and is not – politically possible.

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Forget the 1970s, Labour’s Fair Pay Agreements will take New Zealand back to the 1890s!

By   /  June 7, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  32 Comments

“FAIR PAY AGREEMENTS” (FPA) are the final proof that Labour is evolving backwards into the Liberal Party. Predictably, National’s ignorance of its own country’s history has rendered it incapable of placing this latest example of Labour milksoppery into its proper context.

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Generating Our Own Momentum?

By   /  June 1, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  35 Comments

CAN A “MOMENTUM” be built in New Zealand? This, in essence, was the question posed by millennial political scholar extraordinaire, Max Harris, to the sixty-or-so leftists who showed up at the Kai Pasifika restaurant on Wednesday night (30/5/18) for the welcome return of Laila Harré’s political “salon”.

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The Italian Job

By   /  May 31, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  25 Comments

RECENT EVENTS IN ITALY raise some disturbing questions about the possibility of executing radical policy reversals in this country. While New Zealand’s constitution is a considerably looser affair than Italy’s, it is still worth pondering what might happen here if a newly-elected, about-to-be-sworn-in government was promising to roll back the gains of neoliberalism. Before attempting an answer, however, it is worth re-capping what has happened in Italy.

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Killing Them Softly: Labour’s Caution Is Proving Fatal To NZ First

By   /  May 29, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Martyn Bradbury, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  67 Comments

WINSTON PETERS had better have something up his sleeve – preferably an ace – or things are going to get messy. Reviewing the latest poll from Newshub/Reid Research, the thought must surely have crossed the NZ First leader’s mind: “Did Jacinda play me?” Because, it is almost impossible to imagine a politician as experienced as Peters agreeing to install such a potentially unstable combination as the Labour-NZF-Green government without first being convinced that Jacinda was genuinely committed to New Zealand’s economic and social transformation.

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Testing The Speaker

By   /  May 24, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  47 Comments

QUESTION TIME IN PARLIAMENT this afternoon was a useful reminder of what Jacinda and her government are up against. In theory, Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition are supposed to impress the Visitor’s Gallery as a government-in-waiting: sagacious, witty and (to use a favourite parliamentary term) honourable. In practice, Simon Bridges’ National Party Opposition comes across as ignorant, boorish and disturbingly truculent.

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MUST READ: Budget 2018: Labour’s Pre-Emptive Capitulation To Kiwi Capitalism’s Discontent

By   /  May 22, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  15 Comments

Grant Robertson’s dutiful and fiscally timid first budget has furnished New Zealand business leaders with all the proof they could possibly need that neoliberalism’s sharpest teeth are all perfectly safe.

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