Until yesterday there had been only three pronouncements from The Beehive since Election Day, October 17.
One of those had been jointly made by Winston Peters as Minister of Foreign Affairs and Ron Mark as Minister of Defence, presumably a last-gasp announcement before they are despatched to the political wilderness at least for three years. It regarded a third P-3 deployment of a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea.
What flowed yesterday – compared with what had dribbled out during an ominously quiet post-election fortnight – was something of a flood. Two ministerial press statements (as distinct from party ones) in one day.
The Point of Order Beehive Monitor was caught by surprise. Continue reading “Yes to snuffing but no to puffing: topping ourselves (voluntarily) is approved but going to pot (legally) is vetoed”
TOTI – a charitable trust in Hamilton – this week announced that a public sculpture commemorating political pioneer Dame Hilda Ross and the 1919 Women’s Parliamentary Rights Act will be unveiled in Hamilton tomorrow. But Dame Hilda’s National Party stripes were curiously camouflaged in the TOTI press statement
Actually, they are not mentioned at all (an oversight, deliberate or otherwise, drawn to our attention by Ele Ludemann on her Homepaddock blog).
The TOTI announcement reminds us that Dame Hilda Ross was the first Hamilton/Waikato woman elected as an MP in 1945 and became the second woman in New Zealand to become a Cabinet Minister in 1949.
It tells us that artist Matt Gauldie’s bronze sculpture portrays her in Parliament: one hand is holding a copy of the 1919 Act which finally allowed women to become MPs, the other is raised, advocating on behalf of women and children, whose welfare she considered her principal concern.
And it advises that the unveiling will be a public event featuring live music performances and guest speakers, Dame Marilyn Waring and feminist historian, Dr Jenny Coleman and Georgina Beyer.
Dame Marilyn Waring is identified as National MP (Waipa 1975-1984) and author of “The Political Years” .
But no mention is made that Dame Hilda Ross too was a National MP. Continue reading “Hurrah for Dame Hilda – but when her statue is unveiled, here’s hoping someone remembers which party she stood for”
Media attention since the general election has focused largely on the shape of any formal relationship between Labour and the Greens in the formation of the next government.
But the need for party leaders to negotiate, talk or whatever with other party leaders to forge a government partnership is very different from three years ago.
The 2017 election on September 23 was followed by a prolonged bout of negotiations which ultimately resulted in the announcement on October 19 that New Zealand First leader Winston Peters and his party had chosen to put Labour into power.
Peters landed the jobs of deputy prime minister and foreign affairs minister in the new government.
At this year’s election Labour won an outright majority on election night and does not need a coalition partner to form a government. Continue reading “After we learn the Greens’ role in the new government, the focus should turn to who gets jobs such as Foreign Affairs”
Hurrah – someone in the Beehive is back in the business of braying about the approval of the spending of public money.
Fair to say, it seems the Government did not actually make the decision to approve a new water storage reservoir in Northland, the first of several infrastructure projects
… earmarked for a speedy consenting process that aims to accelerate New Zealand’s economic recovery from Covid-19.
But Environment Minister David Parker said the government did welcome the decision.
He made something of a meal of it, actually, banging on about a veritable trifecta of virtues. The project will –
- Boost the economic recovery from Covid-19;
- Protect environmental standards; and
- Satisfy Treaty of Waitangi principles.
If the project did not pass muster in the Treaty department, would the plug have been pulled? Continue reading “NZ First might seem washed up but Kaikohe’s water storage project (helped by the PGF) wins fast-flow consent”
Americans go to the polls on Tuesday to elect a president, senators for the upper house and representatives for the lower house. The presidential fight predominates but the other races are as important. If we think MMP can be complicated, try the US electoral system.
All current polling suggests a landslide victory for Joe Biden in the presidential race, the Democrats in the Senate and again in the House of Representatives. However, the outcome is not so precise.
On a summary of recent polls, Joe Biden, the Democrat candidate, leads President Donald Trump by an average 11 points and is scoring above 50%. Biden’s favourable rating stands at 46% (Trump is at 45%), and he is trusted on all issues including the economy by 45% with Trump hard on his heels at 44%.
Trump’s job approval rates are under 43% and he lags behind Biden in the three key swing states he carried in 2016 – Michigan where Biden is polling at 51% to Trump’s 44%, Pennsylvania 53% to 46% and Wisconsin 51% to 41%. Continue reading “The polls point to a landslide for Biden but the popular vote is not what matters most in the US election system”
Browsing through items of political news published on Labour Day, we came across a statement from the New Zealand Public Party (NZPP) and Reset New Zealand which declared they were retreating from Jami-Lee Ross’s Advance New Zealand party.
Not a full retreat, necessarily. Rather, they
“ … have moved away from their election alliance with Advance NZ to reform back into the intended party”.
The intended party?
An amalgamated party without Ross and his supporters, we imagine.
“We recognise the importance of this movement continuing to improve itself in many ways, and at the same time staying true to its core”, said NZPP’s leader, Billy Te Kahika.
“That means NZPP will continue to call things out on behalf of the public, hold this government up to scrutiny, demand its accountability, and defend our rights and freedoms.
“We will also be a watchdog of the New Zealand media that continues to be hostile towards the organisation that is rightfully questioning the Government’s COVID-19 narrative and educating the public about the patently dishonest actions of this sector towards us and the persistent slanting of facts and misinformation”. Continue reading “NZPP leaders decide the best way to make progress politically is to step back from Advance NZ”
A warning was sounded at the beginning of a recent New Zealand Herald report about the crimes of a couple of blokes who – according to the Indigenous Pacific Uprising – should not be imprisoned.
The warning was in capital letters.
GRAPHIC CONTENT WARNING – THIS STORY CONTAINS DESCRIPTIONS OF VIOLENT CRIME.
The two blokes in question were jailed for their part in what the Herald described as
“ … a brutal kidnap where the victim was tortured over 12 hours – his pinky finger cut off with secateurs, both feet shot and his naked body burned with a blowtorch while he was tied up and gagged.
“His attackers, who believed he had robbed another person of “thousands of dollars”, burned his eyes with cigarettes, urinated on him and beat him for hours in a bid to get him to disclose where the money was.” Continue reading “Let’s forget about prison and see what a term in charm school can achieve – or will crime disappear in decolonised NZ?”
We watched the last debate before the US presidential elections. President Donald Trump was better-behaved and the presence of mute microphones made for a more moderate evening. But apart from a few clashes on health coverage and law and order, the debate – and most of the campaign – has been policy free.
One glaring absence (for a Point of Order team preparing to relax over Labour Weekend and commemorate Labour Day) was labour law. By and large membership of unions and compulsory bargaining has been missing from the industrial relations scene in the US in recent years.
At present 27 states have “right to work” laws where unions can organise workers but individuals can opt out if they please.
South Carolina is a good example. In 2013 Boeing selected that state to erect a factory to build 787 Dreamliners in part because of the right-to-work laws. This month it announced all 787s would be built there, taking production away from the union-heavy Everett site. Continue reading “The price of union support for Biden – legislation to shift the balance in US industrial relations”
Do you need encouragement to remain united and strong, either because of the election result, the persistence of Covid-19, the decision that will restrict our ability to watch the America’s Cup – or whatever?
The Honourable Aupito William Sio has delivered such encouragement with an announcement headed …
Tokelau Language Week reminds us to stay united and strong
Sio’s message perhaps may be intended for just some people, not necessarily all. The word “our” in relation to cultural identity seems to limit the intended audience.
But in the last sentence, all New Zealanders are given some advice.
Continue reading “In a rare post-election Beehive announcement, we are encouraged to stay united and strong”
Kiwi cheese-makers will be wondering which advice they should take from chef Simon Gault.
This week he was saying they should stop trying to imitate brie and gouda and focus on producing uniquely New Zealand styles.
His advice was given to people watching a webinar arranged by the European Union Delegation to New Zealand, an outfit committed to promoting the EU’s increasing use of geographical indications to protect European products.
In June last year, however, Gault was singing the praises of NZ French-style cheeses.
In particular, he was enthusing about a French-style camembert made in the Nelson region.
So you don’t have to go to France to buy a cheese, he advised.
“ Bastille day is coming up – let’s buy NZ French cheese” Continue reading “It isn’t hard cheese if the EU gets its way with GIs, chef insists – but dairy exporters are likely to disagree”