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The Boy On The Tram

By   /  May 15, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  33 Comments

When the state-owned railways Prebble had pledged to save were being “corporatized” (i.e. readied for sale to private buyers) a story began doing the rounds which Labour insiders always insisted came from Prebble’s Office. It was “The Story of the Disappearing Bulldozer”.

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Pampered landlords – our biggest beneficiaries

By   /  May 14, 2018  /  John Minto, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  28 Comments

Pampering landlords has been a consistent feature of New Zealand economic policy by successive governments. Leaving housing to the market has meant plenty of quality homes and good choices for higher-income tenants and families but the reverse for everyone on modest and low incomes. Today’s housing crisis means impossibly high rents and steadily reducing quality for private-sector tenants.

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The case against light rail

By   /  May 14, 2018  /  Christine Rose, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  18 Comments

The Government’s announcements that they are to accelerate the procurement process for light rail to the airport and to the NorthWest including Kumeu, had some pundits and young transport enthusiasts breathless with excitement.

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“If This Is Marxism Then I Am Not A Marxist” – What Would Karl Think Of The PRC Claiming His 200th Birthday?

By   /  May 13, 2018  /  Curwen Rolinson, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  5 Comments

It kinda amuses me, kinda infuriates me how much of a big deal the People’s Republic of China’s been making in relation to Marx’s birthday over the weekend.

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America’s Bitter Legacy In The Middle East

By   /  May 11, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  31 Comments

THE QUESTION CONFRONTING the Democratic Party when it next takes control of the White House will, simply, be: “What now?” The next Democratic President will likely enter office with the two most powerful Islamic nations in the Middle East, Iran and Saudi Arabia, locked in a nuclear arms race. Faced with the prospect of two bitter foes acquiring the means to wipe it off the face of the earth, Israel (which already possesses its own nuclear arsenal) will be screaming at the new Democratic administration to: “Do something – or we will!” Doing something will be unavoidable – but what is it that the United States should do?

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Media bullsh*t vs the Bovine variety

By   /  May 11, 2018  /  Frank Macskasy, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  17 Comments

A case in point where the media can misrepresent what an elected representative  has stated occurred immediately after Corin Dann interviewed Environment Minister, David Parker, on 6 May, on TVNZ’s Q+A;

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Dr Liz Gordon: Fixing Work and Income

By   /  May 10, 2018  /  Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  25 Comments

The organisation widely known as WINZ, but in reality Work and income, has been in the media again. There is widespread acknowledgement, even by the Minister, that Work and Income is not operating as it should, causing distress and lack of entitlements for thousands of people, many of whom are living below the poverty line.

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What Has Trump Just Done?

By   /  May 9, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  59 Comments

WHAT HAPPENED this morning (9/5/18) has yet to be fully understood by the peoples of the world. Upon learning of President Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the Iran Nuclear Deal, the temptation to simply roll one’s eyes and shake one’s head was hard to resist. Many would have recalled Trump’s decision to pull the US out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement and assumed his latest move was in a similar vein.

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The devil is in the retail

By   /  May 9, 2018  /  Kate Davis, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  27 Comments

When the strange events of the World fashion label crashed into my radio yesterday I may have snickered. On the one hand I thought how cheeky, but on the other the House of G shopper in me had little sympathy for the people paying a hundy for a fifteen dollar T. However by the time I heard Dame Denise L’Estrange-Corbet talking to John Campbell I started to lose my shit.

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Dave Macpherson – The Mental Health Inquiry – get involved

By   /  May 9, 2018  /  Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  8 Comments

Three months after taking office, the Labour/NZ First/Green Government announced an Inquiry into this country’s Mental Health services – after the previous National Government insisted for three years it was ‘on top of’ the issue, including New Zealand’s world record level of youth suicides, nationwide staffing crises in the sector, and fast-growing lack of confidence in the service from most communities.

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“Convergence Des Luttes” – A Convergence Of Struggles

By   /  May 8, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  5 Comments

EMMANUEL MACRON will be hoping that Mark Twain was wrong about history. In the French President’s ears, the celebrated American novelist’s famous observation that although history does not repeat itself, it sometimes rhymes, can hardly be reassuring.

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Come on Phil Twyford – the government can do better than this!

By   /  May 6, 2018  /  John Minto, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  25 Comments

It is stupid of the government to spend tens of millions on motel accommodation for homeless families when we have 33,000 empty homes in Auckland.

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Protest or subservience

By   /  May 5, 2018  /  Leslie Bravery, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  8 Comments

Last month in Gaza, a boy playing soccer near the al-Bureij refugee camp was shot by Israeli soldiers. The wound inflicted was so severe that he has since had to have his leg amputated. On 19 April, Doctors Without Borders, also known as Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) medical teams reported extraordinarily large wounds being inflicted among protesters by Israeli Army snipers, causing terrible destruction of bones and soft tissue, with huge exit wounds as large as a fist.

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Giving Trump Enough Rope

By   /  May 4, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  30 Comments

THE SPEED at which the Right is mutating is nowhere more evident than in Donald Trump’s America. One has only to examine the tensions within the American Republican Party to get some measure of its disarray. In spite of controlling all three branches of the federal government, the Republicans have never looked more fractious. Fewer and fewer on the right are convinced that politics-as-usual is any longer capable of delivering the changes they seek.

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Dr Liz Gordon – The land of the zombie apocalypse

By   /  May 3, 2018  /  Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  10 Comments

In Arizona, the rate of incarceration is six times what it is here, at 1200 per 100,000 of population. The main reasons for this are the ‘war on drugs’ and also the length of sentences given, often for quite minor crimes. Women are also jailed for prostitution, which increases the female numbers.

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National’s new-found concern for the poor

By   /  May 3, 2018  /  Frank Macskasy, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  31 Comments

There are times when National’s opposition to the Coalition government’s new policies leaves one shaking their head in utter dismay.  Jami-Lee Ross – a notorious union-basher and unrepentant enemy of workers – shedding crocodile tears for the poor of this country, is not a pretty sight…

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