Recent Posts

Food Show 2014: Not Bad

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Feed by Russell Brown
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There are a number of things you can count on at The Food Show in Auckland. Among them: the stall immediately to the left of the entry to the hall is always a busy one. It's most people's first stop,…

The crybaby philosopher

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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Earlier this week, Act Party leader Jamie Whyte notified the world that he had delivered a speech entitled Race has no place in the law and, it seemed, sat back in anticipation of plaudits for his tremendous argument. Sadly, the…

Jim's Festival

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Speaker by Jimmy Rae Brown
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As he did last year, Jimmy Rae Brown has been ushering and assisting at the New Zealand International Film Festival. This means he gets to see quite a few films -- the ones he works at and the ones he…

Media Take: In the Eye of the Storm

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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I'm flying solo on this week's Media Take -- for a very good reason. My colleague and co-host Toi Iti had an engagement in the Urewera on Sunday. He was present when Police Commissioner Mike Bush visited six whanau --…

Te Arai - The Veil

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Capture by Tia Huia Ranginui
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Capture is pleased to present a selection of the work of Tia Huia Ranginui, a photographic artist from Whanganui. "'Te Arai' (The Veil) is a series of photographs of my daughter on our journey home from the Coromandel peninsula. Our…

A true commitment

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Speaker by Diane White
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In recent weeks, the Government has come out in support of a push for strangulation to become its own offence. One of a number of recommendations by an independent committee into family violence deaths, the Family Violence Death Review Committee…

Friday Music: Why anyone does it in the first place

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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Florian Habicht’s Pulp film is warm, funny, satisfying and true. And its first few minutes are just brilliantly, awesomely exuberant. They're why people buy records and go to gigs and obsess over bands, and why people play in bands in…

Fulminating and fermenting

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Feed by Russell Brown
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Longtime readers of this site may be aware of my occasional bursts of fulmination about overhopped stunt beers -- and my calls for New Zealand craft brewers to produce more sessionable brews in the classic best bitter style I think…

Te Reo Māori in schools: let's just start

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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I was born 52 years ago today, on a date that seems unnervingly close to the 1950s. I caught the end of the free school milk years (they really did just leave it out in the sun) and I like…

Power to (all) the people!

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Access by Ezekiel Robson
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The society we live in today has been shaped by many struggles, social movements, and revolutionary forces, most aiming to create a more egalitarian existence.  Women, indigenous peoples, LGBT communities, and even animals have secured hard won recognition of their…

Tomorrow Lives Forever

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Up Front by Emma Hart
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A while back, I promised you that next time I wrote, we'd have more fun. In that time, the world in general and my life in particular have become much grimmer. Therefore, in my opinion, the Fun is even more…

Over the paywall?

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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This time last year, it seemed a cert that both our big newspaper sites -- Stuff and the New Zealand Herald Online -- would adopt paywalls. That is, stop being free and start charging for access, probably after a set…

Friday Music: Good ideas and grumbles

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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Ian Jorgensen, aka Blink, is a remarkable man: principled, organised, creative and willing to work to put his ideas into practice, be they the Camp A Low Hum Festivals, his Wellington music venue Puppies or a string of domestic and…

Not even a statistic

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Speaker by "Katrina"
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A report published in February in The Lancet says Australia and New Zealand have more than double the global average of sexual assaults on females aged 15 and over by someone other than their partner.  It suggests that data from…

Auckland's future: Keep calm, but think hard

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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I presume I wasn't the only one a bit perplexed by Bernard Orsman's story in Monday's Herald about Auckland Council "finances reach[ing] crisis point" and the council "living beyond its means" amid "a financial mess" that would necessitate a "black…

Dotcom: Further news of the unlikely

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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On the face of it, Prime Minister John Key's consistent claim that he had never heard of Kim Dotcom until the eve of the extraordinary armed raid on the Dotcom mansion on January 20 2012 seems unlikely and absurd. How…

It was 30 years ago today

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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Thirty years ago today, New Zealand pivoted. On July 14, 1984, the fourth Labour government was elected and things would never be the same again. I remember voting that morning. I was living in a barely-converted warehouse in Fort Street…

Going solar?

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Hard News by Russell Brown
146

The recent Guardian story declaring that "solar has won" over coal as a means of generating electricity for big cities may or may not overstated the case, but it certainly signalled a welcome and hugely beneficial trend. Developments in Japan…

A wretched editorial

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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As Toby Manhire pointed out in his Herald column on Friday, the decision to speak up of 22 year-old Tania Billingsley, the alleged victim of an assault with intent to rape that sparked a diplomatic scandal, drew foaming outrage from…

Friday Music: Bits and pieces

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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Just a quickie post this week, because I'm flat-out with with and conferences and stuff. And besides, there's Campbell Walker's prodigious guest post on Peter Jefferies and his work if you want some more reading and listening pleasure. Peter plays…

Peter Jefferies: Time and the singular man

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Speaker by Campbell Walker
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Peter Jefferies released his last album in 2001. Tellingly titled Closed Circuit, and released on the Texas label Emperor Jones, it didn't make a huge impact at the time – the modest international boom for the highly distinctive underground New Zealand…

What looks good to me

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Access by Chelle Hope
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Living with spina bifida can be physically exhausting.  Sometimes that gets me down. I often feel a psychological detachment from my body, a sort of disembodiment that comes from a loss of control I feel over my own health and…

World Cup of Evil

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Field Theory by Hadyn Green
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I'm not sure what theme FIFA was hoping to emphasise at the is world cup, I'll bet good money that it wasn't "villainy".  Almost as soon as the knock-out stages started the bad guys started their evil works. Perhaps even…

Media Take: Afghanistan, trust and NetHui

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Hard News by Russell Brown
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The most puzzling part of the response to Jon Stephenson's Collateral Damage report last week for Native Affairs was the extent to which it focused on claims that the programme had not made. Stephenson's story drew on both a paper…