Is the government digging itself into a hole as it awaits a solution to the problem of contested land at Ihumatao?
For two days in a row, PM Jacinda Ardern has backed away from questions over a Crown loan being used to purchase the land where a housing development has been held up because of a long-running protest.
Continue reading “The Ihumatao saga could have a far-reaching impact on NZ politics”
Justice Minister Andrew Little sounded distinctly priggish, when he chided National’s Nick Smith in Parliament yesterday.
Smith had asked if Little stood by all his statements, policies, and actions on electoral law and referenda?
The answer was yes, he did.
But Little couldn’t resist the temptation to go further and say:
” … I should point out that the accepted plural of ‘referendum’ these days is ‘referendums’.”
This was a disquieting reminder that the “accepted” way of saying things could well be incorporated in a new “hate” law which Little seems keen to have enacted to curb our freedom to express ourselves. Continue reading “Andrew Little’s priggish rebuke suggests “Fascist” might be an acceptable word when his “hate law” is enacted”
Parliament is the place where laws are made. Justice is dispensed elsewhere, as the bloke stood down from Parliament after publication of the Francis report probably would attest.
Veteran Parliamentary reporter Barry Soper reports that the man
… was stood down by the closed shop Parliamentary Service last week, which is exempt from the Official Information Act and will not have to release documents over the alleged incident.
The Francis report, dealing with bullying and harassment in Parliament, revealed three serious allegations of sexual harassment. Continue reading “Soper throws some light on case of man “in a very dark place” over Parliamentary harassment report”
Deputy PM Winston Peters, leading off the general debate in Parliament this week, had some fun at the expense of Opposition Leader Simon Bridges.
Predicting the early demise of National’s leader, Peters said Bridges had cancelled an overseas tour.
“Just the other day Mr Bridges, who is planned and appointed to go to Washington, which is the annualised tour for the Leader of the Opposition to go to Washington, decided to cancel. Why? Well, he’s too scared that if he’s away—
SPEAKER: Order! Order!
PETERS: Oh, he’s too worried that if he’s away—I can’t challenge his fortitude, but he’s so worried that if he is away, the mice will play. Can I just say this: you know, he should go, because even an inmate deserves a last meal—a last meal. He should go. National is a party of four d’s: distracted, divided, desperate, and divisive. The Government’s a party of four d’s: driven, determined, dynamic, and delightful”. Continue reading “It looks like taxpayers (for now) have been spared the air fare to fly Bridges to Washington”
Green MP Golriz Ghahraman spoke movingly in Parliament during the debate on the motion of condolence to families of mosque victims, recalling how as a nine-year-old she and her family were welcomed in Auckland as they “escaped oppression at the risk of torture”.
“We had lived through a war, and I will never forget being that nine-year-old girl on the escalator at Auckland Airport with my frightened parents. We weren’t turned back. We were welcomed here. So I want to thank every single New Zealander—hundreds of thousands of people—who came out over the last three days, who stood on the right side of history for our values of inclusion and love”.
Then she issued a challenge to her fellow MPs. She contended that politicians bear some responsibility for the shootings that killed 50 people at two mosques on Friday.
“There sit among us those who have for years fanned the flames of division, who have blamed migrants for the housing crisis. None of us are directly responsible for what happened on Friday – we’re all horrified – but we’re all on notice now, we have to change the way we do politics. Our most vulnerable communities are hurt, we’re scared – white supremacists want us dead.“
Ghahraman asserted that although the man accused of the shootings was not born in NZ, the ideology that led to the Christchurch mosque shootings exists in pockets of NZ Continue reading “Yep, that’s what Peters said – now let’s see if Erdogan goes Googling (and can put things in context)”
Describe the leader of the Opposition as “Simple Simon”, and it’s all a bit of a lark. Yes, Jacinda Ardern did have to withdraw and apologise in Parliament after she responded to a question from Opposition leader Simon Bridges with reference to a character in a childhood nursery rhyme.
Ardern was elected on a promise to bring a kinder and nicer face to politics, of course, as a scribe at Stuff pointed out.
So is it kind and nice to respond to Bridges’ question: ” It’s quite simple…..Simon”
Ardern might have been paying Bridges a compliment, of course, saying he is uncomplicated, clear, plain and understandable (yeah,right!). Those happen to be among the several meanings of “simple” – but:
“If you say that someone is simple, you mean that they are not very intelligent and have difficulty learning things.” Continue reading “How MPs can unleash the furies by throwing barbs like ‘stupid’”
What’s the piece missing from the public gaze on the Karel Sroubek scandal and what’s behind the heavy backing given to Iain Lees-Galloway by both the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister?
The blunder the Immigration Minister made over the convicted criminal Sroubek is one of the most egregious by a minister in decades. He wouldn’t have survived under Helen Clark – or, for that matter, most other Prime Ministers.
In protecting Lees-Galloway, both the PM and Deputy PM stoked the fires of speculation and political tension, culminating in the stoush in Parliament where the Speaker expelled first the Leader of the Opposition, Simon Bridges, and then the Shadow Leader of the House, Gerry Brownlee.
Continue reading “Putting the Sroubek puzzle together is challenging – perhaps a key piece is missing”
Raymond Huo, a Labour MP, officially celebrated this year’s New Zealand Chinese Language Week by reading the Parliamentary prayer in Mandarin at 2pm on Tuesday.
News of the reading was contained in a press release from Silvereye Communications and is recorded at Hansard, but news media seem not to have paid much heed (at least, Point of Order found no media report of what transpired in a Google search).
It didn’t escape the critical attention of economist Michael Reddell, however, who posted his thoughts in an item headed Shame on our MPs. Continue reading “MP’s Mandarin prayer is all very well – but what about those unanswered questions?”
New Zealand First’s Shane Jones today has been rewarded with a positive mention in the Dominion-Post’s weekly “Below the Beltway” column, where a political scribe salutes some politicians in the “up” section and chide others in the “down” section.
Explaining why Jones merited a spot in the “up” section, the column says –
“He’s on track for his target of one billion trees after Cabinet approved an extra $250 million for the scheme…”
At Point of Order we would have taken into account his playing the race card in an ignoble attempt to constrain the Nats from holding the Government to account at Question Time. Continue reading “Plaudits for Shane Jones should be offset by his antics at Question Time”
A small serving of the rich rhetoric of the late Rod Donald rang through the Parliamentary debating chamber yesterday – so rich that one MP could not stomach it. He raised a point of order to insist he had been offended.
Astonishingly, this bizarre attempt to be spared from having to hear Donald’s strongly expressed views was made by …
Drum roll, please…
It was made by James Shaw.
We kid you not, dear reader. The offended MP was James Shaw, a delicate creature (apparently) who holds the Green Party co-leadership job that once was impressively held by the politician whose views he seemed intent on suppressing.
We can only imagine that – somewhere in The Hereafter – a bemused Rod Donald was tuned into these goings-on and was wondering what Shaw was trying to achieve.
On the other hand, Donald would be pleasantly surprised to be quoted by a National MP.
Continue reading “The absurd case of a Green MP who took offence when Nick Smith quoted the words of Rod Donald”