Archive for the ‘ACT Party’ Category

by Daphna Whitmore

I’m a big fan of rail and will bore anyone who will listen to me about the joy of no longer owning a car in Auckland. I walk five  minutes from home to a train station and travel happily free from the nightmare that is Auckland gridlock.  Auckland as a city for humans needs more electric trains and light rail.

Labour’s plan for transport in Auckland has just been announced and has unashamedly been lifted from the pages of Greater Auckland (formerly TransportBlog). The people from Greater Auckland have done a huge amount of research and have been putting the case every day since 2015 for a world class public transport system in Auckland. It is good to see their ideas being adopted.

What is not great is that Labour will introduce a regional fuel tax to raise money for the programme. This flat tax will mean more indirect taxation, and is inherently anti-working class. Again Labour’s fake concern for the poor is on display.

Auckland’s gridlock is said to cost $1.9b a year in lost productivity. That is a loss for businesses. For the workers stuck in traffic it is a loss in precious time and a loss of enjoyment of life. Labour will lift the financial loss from businesses and have it borne by the people in cars.  (more…)

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by Daphna Whitmore

While Trump’s visa bans and a wall across the US-Mexico border are rightly seen as abhorrent, Labour and the Greens advocate a pretty high wall of immigration restrictions here in New Zealand.

Labour is facing criticism of its long simmering anti-immigration campaign and it is being called out as hypocritical for denouncing Trump while indulging in dog whistle politics.

kiwi-nationalism

Andrew Little peddling Labour’s nationalistic brand

The latest comments come from Peter Dunne who notes that Labour “talks about new migrants as problems, rather than as people”. He goes on to point out this “is exactly the same ‘us versus them’ narrative that contributes to reactionary and damaging policy regarding immigration”.

A few days earlier Graeme Edgeler on The Spinoff website suggested folks take a look at the Citizenship (Western Samoa) Act 1982. (more…)

Dirty PoliticsHow attack politics is poisoning New Zealand’s political environment by Nicky Hagerdirtypolitics

Reviewed by Daphna Whitmore

For over a week Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics has been in the news. With its promise of a tell-all about the links between the political right and their bloggers revealed in hacked emails, the first print run was sold out in a day.

At just over 100 pages Hager’s book is an easy, though not pleasant, read. Delving into the thoughts and motives of blogger Cameron Slater, and others around him who specialise in attack style political campaigning, is a putrid business.

Most of Dirty Politics confirms what we already knew from reading Slater’s Whale Oil blog. His style of politics is vicious and crude. What Hager adds to the picture is Slater as a PR agent for hire. (more…)

by Don Franks

On April 30 this year, a new political party was formed by former Maori Party MP Hone Harawira – Te Mana Party. It was formed from a left split, as Harawira was expelled for opposing his party’s support for the National Government. It’s clear from the policies Hone has so far offered that he is determined to broaden his support beyond his Te Tai Tokerau electorate by appealing explicitly to the working class. Mana will be ‘pro-worker’ and for trade unions, anti-neoliberal (going so far as to call for a ‘planned economy’)”. June 2011, Andrew Tait, NZ International Socialists

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Kim Dotcom

“Mana upholds the primacy of extra-parliamentary action by the people. As Hone told a protest in the capital this year : “When we finally realise the power that we have outside of this House, this House will fall down stone by stone” – a speech given at a Socialist Alliance public meeting in Melbourne on 7 November 2012 by Fightback member Grant Brookes

“Mana unapologetically puts forward solid socialist demands. Full employment and jobs for all, starting with a massive programme building quality, healthy State Housing. Free public transport in major cities to end gridlock and alleviate climate change. Free Education for All, from Playcentre to University, and abolish the naked intergenerational theft that is artificially created student debt. Free broadband on demand with no data caps, and defending the digital commons from the corporates and the spooks. Feeding all the children of the nation at school so that poverty statistics are no excuse for hunger. All to be funded by freeing up some of the $22 billion accrued by ACC, and of course, taxing the rich until they squeak.” 2014, Joe Carolan, Socialist Aotearoa blog

In New Zealand, frustrated far leftists have long had a bad tradition of talking things up to ridiculous extents. There is a King James New Testament ring to the socialist left’s sycophancy surrounding the Mana party. It must be admitted, there is a small grain of justification for that. In this country’s arid drought of working class struggle and rigorous political debate, smaller knolls appear as big mountains. (more…)

johnkey

by Philip Ferguson

Last week, on January 25, prime minister John Key delivered his “State of the Nation” address.  He claimed that, by global standards, the NZ economy is doing quite well and described it as “robust” and largely escaping the kind of meltdowns that have occurred in much of Europe and the economic woes which have beset the American economy.

This “robust” economy, of course, has an official unemployment rate of over 7%, with 25% of those aged 20-65 having no work, and many more working part-time hours that don’t allow them to make ends meet or working substantially more than 40 hours a week to get by.  This is a sharp contrast to, say, the 1960s when there were so few official unemployed that the joke was that the prime minister knew all their names.

Back then, whether you were on the left or right, it was hard to imagine a structural unemployment rate of five, six or seven percent, without a major social revolt occurring.  It is certainly a mark of how Labour and National between them have succeeded in lowering workers’ expectations, while a series of defeats, largely thanks to the misleaderships atop so much of the old union movement, meant many workers simply gave up on fighting back.

Key’s speech promised, “The (more…)

by Don Franks
Fallout from the long awaited inevitable career disintegration of  disgusting little pus wipe Banks has been instructive.

Banks’ brazen dishonesty has jolted right-wing blogger Cactus Kate to “come out” as “apolitical”.

Right-wing Kiwi Blog has moved apace to disown  ACT with an obituary which, as an old person with time priorities, I didn’t bother to read beyond the title.

There has been other desperate stuff like this and as I see it there is an unhappy feeling across the right that they need to try to reclaim some political integrity.

Ha fucking ha fucking ha. (more…)