Recent Posts

An Open Letter To David Cunliffe

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Speaker by James Macbeth Dann
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Dear David, I want to first congratulate you on the campaign you ran. You gave it your all, and did well in the debates. I was deeply disappointed in the result that Labour got on September 20th - but I’m…

A message from The Fabians

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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Dear Fabian Friend Narratives from the 2014 Election: what do we learn? A Fabians Reflection on Dirty Politics, Dotcom and Labour’s worst result. With Sue Bradford, Russell Brown and Kirk Serpes. Thursday 16th October in the Owen Glen Building, Lecture…

Science and Democracy

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Speaker by Nicola Gaston
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Science has a bad habit of asking – demanding, even – to be placed in a position of power.  To be referred to as an authority on all things.  To be trusted by the public. Not that this last is a bad…

Friday Music: The swimmer reaches the shore

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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When TheAudience launched as an NZ On Air-backed hype site more than two years ago, perhaps the the first song on it to really stand out for me -- and for a lot of people -- was by an artist,…

Compulsory voting and election turnout

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Speaker by Alex Mackenzie
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Rarely is there harmony on anything around election time. But everyone seems to agree that not enough New Zealanders are voting (see here, here, and here). That this election saw a rise in turnout since the last one is hardly…

Sunlight Resistance

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OnPoint by Keith Ng
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They say sunlight is the best disinfectant. It always seemed like a self-explanatory concept: Wrongdoing is exposed, wrongdoers scuttle back into the shadows. But what happens when you crank up the sunlight, and the brightly-lit assholes just stand there staring…

The humanity

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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Election campaigns are exhausting for everyone concerned, and the strange one we've just emerged from more than most. Even for the losers, there's usually at least the simple relief of it all being over. Most of us out here can…

Three times over, and never again

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Speaker by June
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 I read something on Twitter a while ago. A question from a well-meaning friend of someone who had recently been sexually assaulted. “How do I convince her to go to the police?” he asked. And I felt an instant pit…

You Can Call Me Brave Now

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Access by Chelle Hope
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People say I’m brave when they see me in my wheelchair. That can be frustrating. I’m not brave just because I happen to have a disability. There are, however, instances in my life where I have had to find a…

Five further thoughts

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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1. Christ, what a shellacking. Click around Harkanwal Singh's Herald interactive. In electorate after electorate, polling place after polling place, National won at least a plurality of the votes. Even where voters collectively chose to return their Labour MPs to…

The sole party of government

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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It turned out to be a great night for the National Party and its leader. For everyone else, the 2014 election result ran from disappointment to disaster. Even New Zealand First, which doubled the support it was showing in polls…

Election 2014: The Special Votes

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Legal Beagle by Graeme Edgeler
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We have a provisional result, and now await the official result after special votes are counted. Special votes are: those cast overseas; those cast on polling day by people voting outside their electorate; those cast by people who enrolled after…

Election 2014: the no threshold counterfactual

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Legal Beagle by Graeme Edgeler
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As I have done on election night of the last two elections, I present below the New Zealand House of Representatives, had the election been conducted with no threshold:  National – 57ACT – 1United Future – 1Conservatives – 5New Zealand First – 11Maori Party – 2Labour…

A live peek at your cray

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Speaker by Tze Ming Mok
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On Saturday morning London time, a rag-tag bunch of left-wing weirdos will descend on my flat to huddle around the glow of livestreams, making panic pikelets and schadenfreude pie, and wishing it was evening here so we could justify sinking…

Decision 2014: Where to watch and listen

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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There were quite a few queries on the wires last night as to where a person who can't receive New Zealand broadcasts might stay abreast of today's election results. Short version: you're spoiled for choice. As I understand it, none…

Good as gold

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Busytown by Jolisa Gracewood
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Everyone should have read the book by now. No, not Dirty Politics (although you should have read that too). The other one that came out quietly at the end of last year and has become the silent witness to this…

Friday Music: Lovable Munter

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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I know I've banged on quite a bit about Courtney Barnett lately, but oh my goodness she was great at the King's Arms this week. Her wordy, nerdy songs, her weird guitar-playing, her rockin' band and her lovable-munter persona, they…

A call from Curia

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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The phone rang last night and when I picked it up, a young woman said "Hi, is Russell there please?" It turned out that we didn't know each other. She was working the phones for Curia Research, the National Party's…

Time to Vote

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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I haven't voted yet. As intriguing as the electorate's unprecedented embrace of advance voting is, I like the idea of going out and casting my vote on the day. For the first time, we'll vote as a whole family, and…

Things I have learned running RockEnrol

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Speaker by Laura O'Connell Rapira
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1)  Politics makes people weird. 2)   Artists and activists are some of the most generous people on the planet. 3)   Good funding is hard to find. 4)   Young people are awesome and often political, they just don’t realise it yet.…

Interview: Glenn Greenwald

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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I was offered an interview with Glenn Greenwald yesterday in the wake of his appearance at the Moment of Truth event. What follows is the transcript of that interview. It covers both the specifics of what he reported at the…

Disability: Election Promises for the 24%

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Access by Hilary Stace
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In the latest census 24% of the population were identified as disabled, that is 1.1 million people New Zealanders. Many of those are older people with physical impairments, but for young people learning disability is the most common. Then there…

The plan against the rebuild

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Speaker by Eric Crampton
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There is a great deal of ruin in a city, to paraphrase Adam Smith’s calm reply to those heralding the doom of Britain after the battle of Saratoga. In other words, it takes a lot to really wreck either a…

In Tribute: Peter Gutteridge and the Hypnotic Groove

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Speaker by Grant McDougall
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Peter Gutteridge changed my life. In December 1988 I came to Dunedin on holiday for a week from my hometown of Gisborne. I was eager to see some of the fabled Dunedin bands live and I couldn’t have timed it…