Sunday, May 29, 2016

can you handle the truth?

It is very hard to face up to this - people commit suicide in this country at alarming rates. The numbers do not tell the full story - how could they. They record successful attempts and not the other multiple attempts. They must fit a certain criteria before they are recorded as suicide and this ensures - what? half are recorded as suicide? a third?

Former Chief Coroner Neil MacLean said the number of recorded suicides in New Zealand should be taken "with a large grain of salt".
"Some people could fall through the gaps because just relying on raw suicide numbers isn't giving us the true number," he said.
Judge MacLean said each case was judged on whether the evidence proved the person deliberately intended to take their life.

"That would include making a determination that it wasn't just an accident or indulging in risky behaviour without thinking of the consequences," he said.
We want to blame - their fault, his or her fault, or this issue or that issue. None of that is really helping because it isn't getting to the heart of the issue.

I'm going to talk about that and some ideas for solutions over the next couple of posts.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

fishy smell

So a group of teens did this and got this
A sentence of home detention for four Northland teenagers for a burglary spree totalling nearly $80,000 in stolen property has been met with outrage...
Former Maori Affairs Minister Dover Samuels told media the penalty was "inadequate", and thousands of social media posts claimed the teens escaped a custody sentence because they were white.Comments left on the Northern Advocate website were similar in theme with most questioning the justice system and making the observation that if the offenders had been Maori or Pacific Islanders the most likely outcome would have been jail.
It is not really rocket science to come to that conclusion especially when we also have this
A trout poacher has been jailed for four months - about 18 months after he was found guilty of the original charges. Leef was also disqualified from driving for six months as he used a car to get to the stream. Leef was caught with 10 rainbow trout strung onto a length of rope by Fish & Game rangers at a spawning stream at Lake Rotoiti in 2014. He claimed he was taking trout to eat and for his whanau.There were six hatchery bred trout and four wild trout.
Yep so there we have it
$80,000 + priviledge = not much
10 trout + Māori = Jail

Justice? No! 
The way it is? yes.
Please note this post is NOT about sending more people to Jail - it is about the injustice of systemic and unrelenting institutional racism. Trout are an introduced species and they don't need special protection so that sport fishers can get a thrill. This poacher was in the wrong - and he was trying to feed his family. But he didn't steal $80,000 worth of fish and he should not have been sent to Jail.

Good post on The Standard on this topic.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

not broken just reflective

The Standard is broken says the voice of reason (trp).

I've had my issues with some authors on The Standard - namely voice himself and I have visited a lot less over the last 3 months because of those issues. I have had time to reflect on The Standard and myself as a commenter, a contributer, an activist and a person.

I've come to some conclusions. These are 2 to consider.

time online is just a little bit better than watching tv - the map is not the territory

the world continues to spin even when we don't contribute - a painful realisation for sure

So to voice's assertion - No The Standard is not broken in the sense that that means because it actually does reflect a wider society - slanting left and progressive. The Standard is not broken, our society is broken, our values are broken, our communities are broken. Yes The Standard is not safe for women, neither is society - ffs women still get blamed for being abused, women still earn less for the same role - the Patriarchy is alive and well - in society and at The Standard.

voice says
My suggestion is that we need to look again at the structures of the Standard, from the ‘owners’, through the moderators and onto the authors. The undemocratic, male dominated and authoritarian ownership structure of the Standard is fundamentally wrong for a left blog. There are moderators who do little or no blog writing, don’t contribute much in the comments, but hang on grimly to their tools of power and control. There are authors who are bigots, authors who hate the left, authors who hate women. One author is all of the above. Why are they here on a left wing blog?
I think voice needs to be more honest here - this is a power play by him to take over The Standard and wrestle it towards his vision of what he thinks it should or maybe could be. That in itself is not necessarily a bad thing but dressing it up as some sort of defense of women is disingenuous and insulting imo.

Please understand I cannot stand and in fact oppose the gender politics and sad defenses offered by the likes of cv or redlogix and over the years I've commented many times about what I, as a man, think about other men who have these ideas.

So what to do?



Yep - do nothing, change nothing, get rid of no one - anything that is done is just hiding the issues and not dealing with them.

But what about offensive and horrible comments?

delete and ban them

But what about making The Standard safer for women?

It won't be, not without changing attitudes and that won't happen anytime soon - especially with fundamentalist views and attitudes.

But The Standard might whither and die?

So does everything. If you want to change that then contribute, be an author, be a commenter, be involved.

Friday, May 6, 2016

use tikanga not leaks

It is time to talk a bit about Ngāi Tahu and the situation at the top.

Sir Mark Solomon is stepping down after 19 years as Kaiwhakahaere, leader of the Iwi. This is a big thing, especially as there are now 'issues' in the media. 

I am of the mind that Mark has been a good leader that has helped the Iwi and that it is a good time for a change.

In recent times I have been especially impressed by Mark. The historical sexual abuse case has shown his leadership. He has said
Sir Mark said he had been campaigning for some time to stamp out all forms of violence and abuse within Ngāi Tahu communities.
On the runanga website, Sir Mark said the descendants of Kurī, the hapū in Kaikoura, were facing a challenging time.
Sir Mark, who is from Kaikoura, said his whanau had found it difficult living within the community, knowing some of their whanau had been perpetrators - or victims - of sexual abuse.
It has been reported a kaumatua has been convicted on sexual abuse charges.
Sir Mark said the hapū was addressing the issue as a community, rather than ignoring the issue and sweeping it under the carpet
the complainants are some of the bravest people he knows.
I also read the letter he sent to all members of the Iwi and within it he was accurate - all communities have sexual abuse victims and perpetrators, this is a community issue and the victims especially need support, they need to know they are supported and loved by the community, the community that includes relatives and friends of the perpetrator and that individual too. This issue within that community is the visible side of sexual abuse and it is within all of our communities. Don't be fooled into thinking it is rare - it isn't.

Mark resigned as chair of Takahanga, he said he will not seek re-election as the Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Representative for Kaikoura and thus his time as Kaiwhakahaere is completed.

and now we have leaked confidential letters showing a real conflict - perhaps personal, perhaps ideological but definitely public now.
A confidential memorandum has been leaked containing a raft of allegations by chairman Sir Mark Solomon that the perception of nepotism and corruption were creeping into the way the iwi conducted itself.
I think the tense is wrong in that statement - "were creeping" nah it creeped a long time ago and guess what? I don't think it is necessarily a bad thing at all.

This bullshit of the "best person" for the job is imposed rubbish that just creates roles for non-iwi members - those roles could and can be filled with Iwi members - and that is what I would like.

I know nepotism has a bad name - and it is a pain when you are not in the inside running - and I know about that from bitter experience but the fundamentals are correct - use people you know, trust and can rely on.

The response from Chief Executive Officer of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Arihia Bennett was very good
asking him to show restraint in his statements, or have the integrity to state them openly and with supporting evidence.
It is interesting to note that in her Iwi profile she writes
“Ko te whānau te mea tuatahi – Family comes first; everything I touch and do must be about the whānau way.”
So we get to the same spot as we have been in the past - and the media will lap it up because they love controversy.

What do I think about it all, whose side am I on?

I wish they'd just get their shit together and use tikanga to sort out their differences not leaked documents like some slimey politician. And at another level I just don't care - when you are in the mode you think you are a big fish, you think you matter, you think you are important - you aren't, you are just another cog, another descendant - our mana is your mana - sort your shit out top table!!!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

bennett has head in the sand and the tide is coming in

Quite a good interview by Jack Tame with Paula Bennett the Climate Change Minister on Q & A this morning. He kept the hard questions going and she didn't like it very much - as shown by the forced smiles.

Will we ratify this year now that we have signed - Bennett says, "I could do it... but I haven't made up my mind"

No hurry, whatever, when I get round to it - is what she means I think. Funny she seemed so genuinely excited to be signing with all the Presidents and Heads of State - just a photo op then.

Tame raises the Morgan report
A new report by the Morgan Foundation, released today, says foreign carbon credits which New Zealand bought to reach its climate targets were fraudulent. 
It says that New Zealand was the world's biggest buyer of Russian and Ukrainian credits which did not represent any reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. 
That meant New Zealand, despite achieving its target on paper, had done little in reality to reduce global emissions. 
"We are, without doubt, cheats", the organisation's founder Gareth Morgan said. 
New Zealand's main tool for reducing atmosphere-warming emissions is the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).
Bennett says the report is "nothing new" and "half of it is kinda right and the rest is factually incorrect"
Tame - but we did continue trading in those credits for a long time when other countries had banned them" 
Bennett - yes...
and then onto excuses and what nots

but the Greens are not going to let it lie, thank goodness
Climate Minister Paula Bennett acknowledged this morning on TVNZ’s Q&A that the National Government had knowingly allowed business to buy carbon credits in the Ukraine and Russia that did not result in actual cuts in emissions, the Green Party said today. 
This acknowledgement comes in the wake of a report by the Morgan Foundation which showed these false cuts in pollution equated to a quarter of the emissions the Government claimed to have reduced between 2008 and 2012. 
“Minister Bennett cannot just say we should all just move on,” said Green Party Co-leader James Shaw. 
"If the Minister cancels New Zealand's fraudulent units, a move she says she is considering, she would have the Green Party's full support. The Greens have been calling attention to these dodgy credits for several years and last week called upon the Minister to cancel them.
 just read that line again
false cuts in pollution equated to a quarter of the emissions the Government claimed to have reduced between 2008 and 2012.
shocking so, so shocking
Tame - it wasn't in the spirit of the talks 
Bennett - it was in the rules okay...
Bennett uses many of the old key tricks in this interview - redirection, "Well I think the question is.. " when she doesn't want to answer the actual question given. "Focus on the future not the past" when she doesn't like the question or "What I would say is..." as an alternative and then into, "Keep it in perspective" to downplay it all. Pretty typical politicalspeak and she does it as well as only the truly committed can.

Apparently bennett has "other countries asking to learn both from what you did well and the mistakes you made" Pity Tame didn't ask which countries because all the telltale fib-markers were out when she was saying that and I really think she made it up.

She did speak the truth when she said she is "not sure" if our target is more within the range of a 3 - 4 degree Celsius rise in temperature. This minister is underdone and not up to debating even what the hell she has signed imo. Tame asks, "Do you accept that a global temperature rise of 3 -4 degree could potentially be catastrophic? Bennett - "yes, absolutely". And then we get the platitudes of "playing our part" "Hugely significant changes" - eh what? Tame asks, "What significant changes?" Bennett - "...a range of things and not one answer". Even Tame is getting over it at this point.
Tame - what does this government value more agriculture (which makes up 33% of our emissions) or climate change? 
Bennett - we're just not going to pick one. 
Tame - why not?
Bennett - cos we don't have to
and that is all she wrote. The rest is bullshit and dopey "I think" stuff from bennett - this minister is just not up to it and she represents this government well - they should all just resign.

Do not rely on the government to help - start now before it is too late, build community, build resilience, build networks and connections, reduce everything - do it now.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

a canary with a fever

Sometimes the canary in the coalmine dies quickly and at other times it slowly expires. The 93% coral bleaching of the Great Barrier Reef this year is a bit of both and shows how these extinction events really happen - they are not linear - they don't happen all ordered and knowable - they happen in bursts, in slides and then plateaus and then cliffs and so on. The Great Barrier Reef is a coughing canary and baring aliens and superheroes is likely to be gone within a decade or 4. This bleaching is caused by sea temperature rises and this is contributed to by fossil fuel burning and that is not even close to stopping or even slowing down. Environmental activists know that even as governments sign a global climate change deal in New York to limit global warming by at least two degrees that this is just a minimum response practically worth nothing other than the ability to skite about it, just like our idiot Minister, back in their home countries.
But environmental activists want greater action from the government at home. 
“Australians can see right through the hypocrisy of the government talking about the reef’s health while allowing the mining and burning of coal to go on at unprecedented levels,” Greenpeace Campaigner Nikola Casule said. 
“Our reef is dying before our eyes. We need a credible plan to mitigate climate change and move to a coal-free economy,” he said on Friday. 
This month the Queensland Government gave the go-ahead for Australia’s biggest coal mine, Adani’s Carmichael mine in the Galilee basin. It has been hugely controversial because its potential impacts on the reef due to dredging and increased port movements.
Yep the BIGGEST coal mine - but these same 'people' will weep and gnash when the reef is dead - "Why didn't someone tell us, oh why didn't someone do something". Scum is too good a word for these greedy exploitative bastards.

Reading about the demise of the Great Barrier Reef often, as in nearly every time, leads to the value of the reef and oh how the MONETARY value is placed above and beyond everything. This just makes me sick.

Be in the moment and enjoy the today you are in for the diversity of your experience and the myriad interactions with other living entities that you enjoy. The times are changing and changing fast...

Thursday, April 21, 2016

key dirties water

John Key says no one owns water yet the corporates and farmers can take it for free and the corporates can bottle it and sell it for a profit. No one owns the water? Wrong. Water is taonga and protected under the Treaty of Waitangi. Water is protected but is not protected because the governments, this and that one, have disregarded the rights of Māori to have taonga protected. The governments have pretended that there was no Treaty. The governments have sold rights to water they didn't own, they have allowed pollution for dairy profit and unspeakable shit dumped into rivers and waterways. They have allowed rivers and streams to be dug up, diverted, dammed and degraded just so they and their mates can earn some profit. They have allowed species within water ecosystems to die and deteriorate. 

These governments have taken water, and the land near it, off Māori and they have polluted this water and when Māori have gotten some of their rights back to protect these waterways and rivers and streams they get blamed for not looking after it in the first place. They get no money to help, they get no support unless a boating club or something is on the waterway. NZ Society - you don't deserve to look after water, you have shown a dismal inclination to protect waterways unless it is in some personal interest. NO!!!!!

It is time to manifest water as taonga and Māori as kaitiaki. It is time to give voice to the Treaty and the protection of taonga, all taonga but especially water - water is life, access to water is a human right, a right for everyone not just a right for the moneybag corporates or farmers or politicians like the disgraceful dirtkey or collins.

ht Micky @ The Standard

Saturday, April 16, 2016

indigenous suicide rates and wtf can we do about it. Part 2 - solutions

While researching solutions to the high Indigenous suicide rates I came across an excellent article on Intercontinental Cry that really cuts to the chase.
Yet, perhaps the most compelling evidence to date connecting cultural continuity – and specifically, language retention – with reductions in First Nation suicide rates came in 2007, from research team, Hallett, Chandler and Lalonde. Their analyses demonstrated that rates of language retention among First Nations had the strongest predictive power over youth suicide rates, even when held amongst other influential constructs of cultural continuity. Their conclusions hold shocking implications about the dire importance of native language preservation and retention efforts and interventions.
“The data reported above indicate that, at least in the case of BC, those bands in which a majority of members reported a conversational knowledge of an Aboriginal language also experienced low to absent youth suicide rates. By contrast, those bands in which less than half of the members reported conversational knowledge suicide rates were six times greater.”
It is important to drive this point home. In the First Nation communities where native language retention was above 50 per cent (with at least half of the community retaining or acquiring conversational fluency) suicide rates were virtually null, zero. Yet in the bands where less than half of community members demonstrated conversational fluency in their native tongue, suicide rates spiked upwards of 6 times the rates of surrounding settler communities.
Indigenous activists and supporters will call out the effects of colonisation and the great losses suffered by indigenous people as significant to the hopelessness that many indigenous people feel and which is externalised in suicide and self harming. And language and community and connection and knowledge are integral parts of the indigenous experience missing for many. The research detailed above suggests a strong connection between language use and suicide rates. We must do more research here to confirm what many of us have suspected - the cutting of cultural ties and the systemic belittling and isolating of indigenous people from their culture, especially youth, is a major factor in the very high rate of suicide among indigenous people.

The article also linked to this article
Explaining the source these crises is relatively straightforward. But communities know the solutions, too: authentic opportunities for the full reclamation of our identities – our languages, our cultures, our traditions and our relationship with the land and waters. This would require restored jurisdiction, honoured treaties, health care and education. This would bring an end to being forced to live in conditions of poverty.
We believe, and are supported by the Indigenous academic and policy research on suicide in First Nation and Inuit communities, that colonization is the problem. The obvious solution, then, is to end the colonization.
 This answer is not the one the majority in society want to hear, this answer gets in the face of those who would deny indigenous people their rightful place, that would deny tangata whenua the equal partnership via the Treaty. Listen to what we are saying - listen to those affected - listen to the solutions and then help put them in place. If not, then the horror thought that society just doesn't care about the suicide of so many indigenous people, will be proven.

Friday, April 15, 2016

indigenous suicide rates and wtf can we do about it

Indigenous suicide rates are well above other groups. What do we do about this?

I work with DBT to help people with high suicidal ideation, high self harm urges and high emotion dysregulation. It is just a small drop in a large bucket but it is all I can do within the resources available.

There are lots of statistics about the terrible crisis this is, for instance in this country

from 2010
The Māori youth suicide rate was 35.3 per 100,000 Māori youth population: more than 2.5 times higher than that of non-Māori youth (13.4 per 100,000).There were 104 Māori suicide deaths in 2010. This represents an age-standardised rate of 16.0 per 100,000 Māori population.There were 10.4 non-Māori deaths per 100,000 population (age-standardised) in 2010.The age-standardised rate for Māori self-harm hospitalisations in 2010 was the highest since 2001 (83.6 per 100,000 Māori in 2010).The age-standardised rate for non-Māori self-harm hospitalisations dropped markedly (by 28.7%) between 1996 and 2010.
and 2011
In 2011 the total Māori suicide rate was 1.8 times higher than the non-Māori suicide rate. There were 108 Māori suicide deaths. This represents an age-standardised rate of 16.8 per 100,000 Māori population (compared with 9.1 non-Māori deaths per 100,000 population).
The Māori youth suicide rate for 2011 was 36.4 per 100,000 Māori youth population (compared with 15.1 per 100,000 non-Māori population). This means the Māori youth suicide rate was 2.4 times higher than the equivalent rate for non-Māori youth.
In summary, the subgroups of the New Zealand population with the highest suicide mortality rates in 2011 were males, Māori (compared with non-Māori), male youth (those aged 15–24 years) and those residing in the most deprived (quintile 5) areas. Māori males and Māori youth showed particularly high suicide mortality rates.
and 2012
The Māori youth suicide rate was 2.8 times the non-Māori youth rate (48.0 per 100,000 Māori youths compared with 17.3 per 100,000 non-Māori youths).Over the 10 years from 2003 to 2012, Māori youth suicide rates have been at least 1.7 times the non-Māori youth suicide rates.Māori had an age-standardised suicide rate of 17.8 per 100,000 Māori, compared with the non-Māori rate of 10.6 per 100,000 non-Māori.In 2012, Māori accounted for nearly 20% (563) of all intentional self-harm hospitalisations.The age-standardised rate for Māori was 85.0 per 100,000 Māori compared with 68.0 per 100,000 non-Māori.
Those statistics should make us all feel sick. And indigenous communities around the world suffer the same disproportionate suicide rates, for instance in Canada we have this horrible scenario
Canada's Parliament held an emergency debate Tuesday on the suicide crisis in a remote aboriginal community after 11 people, nine of them minors, attempted suicide over the weekend and more than a dozen youths were overheard making a suicide pact. 
Lawmaker Charlie Angus, who represents the northern Ontario community of Attawapiskat, said in Parliament that the crisis has shocked the world and people are asking how Canada can leave so many people behind. Attawapiskat, population 2,000, declared a state of emergency Saturday. There have been about 100 suicide attempts since September and at least one death.
When minors start trying to kill themselves we are really in the end times and we really have to act to help them.

There is a conference coming up that I am going to attend - the World Indigenous Suicide Prevention Conference 2016.

Somehow, someway we must create hope and choices for indigenous people thinking suicide is the answer. Somehow we have to do this and creating cultural connection is part of it, creating connections of all types. See you at the conference.

the illusion of consultation

So arrogant and so wrong Te Ururoa Flavell you have let us down and now your legacy has been set and it is a sad, paltry legacy.
Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell is pushing ahead with his controversial proposals to change the way Māori land is handled.
He has introduced the Te Ture Whenua Māori Bill into Parliament, one month after the Waitangi Tribunal criticised the extent of consultation and recommended more engagement with Māori before changing the law.
Oh no he doesn't care what the Waitangi Tribunal says and what do they say?
The Tribunal report upheld several concerns claimants had about the bill, the key one being that consultation wasn't up to scratch. 
It warned that the Minister needed to go out and get enough support from Māori or risk breaching the Treaty of Waitangi.
the minister responds
But Mr Flavell said since that hearing, he has held 22 public hui and 14 wānanga, the bill has been tweaked, and he has that vote of confidence.
This minister is not trusted, his assurances are meaningless, his word is false.

What is this Bill all about?
The new bill aims to give landowners more say and ultimately make it easier for them to use their Māori land.
by 'use' think 'sell' and thus the whittling away of Māori land continues - by overt and covert means the greedy will try to get it all and the greedy will try to sell it all and stopping this will be the people, tangata whenua. And the greedy will be stopped.

the games they want us to play

JMG has written an outstanding essay again. This essay has really made me think about the contrived, approved narratives used to discuss issues. We have the same approved narratives here in this country. In this essay JMG uses racism as an example.

There’s a school of psychology called transactional analysis, which focuses on interactions between people rather than the vagaries of the individual psyche. Transactional analysis covers a lot of ground, but I want to focus on just one of its themes here: the theory of interpersonal games...
There’s plenty more that could be said here about the details of the Rescue Game and the narrative of race derived from it, but at this point I’d like to consider three broader issues. The first is the relation between the game and the narrative, on the one hand, and the realities of racism in today’s America. I don’t doubt that some readers of this essay will insist that by questioning the narrative, I’m trying to erase the reality.  Not so. Racial privilege, racial prejudice, and racial injustice are pervasive factors in American life today.  The fact that the approved narrative of race in today’s America is deceptive and dysfunctional doesn’t make racism any less real; on the other hand, the fact that American racism is a stark reality doesn’t make the narrative any less deceptive and dysfunctional...
...Step back and look at the whole picture, and it’s not hard to see why this should be so. At any given time, after all, there are many different Rescue Games in play, with affluent white people always in the role of Rescuers and an assortment of less privileged groups alternating in the roles of Victims and Persecutors. Perhaps, dear reader, you find it hard to imagine why affluent white people would want to keep everyone else so busy fighting one another that they never notice who benefits most from that state of affairs. Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to you that giving the underprivileged the chance to air their grievances and engage in a little socially sanctioned bullying is a great deal less inconvenient for the affluent than actually taking action to improve the lives of the underprivileged would be. Such thoughts seemingly never enter the minds of most Americans; I’ll leave it to you to figure out why.
 It is interesting to consider how narratives get forced back into the approved variety and how unconscious the whole process of 'narratives' is. What narratives are you buying into? As JMG says,
"Every society has a set of acceptable narratives that frame public discourse on any controversial subject, and trying to get past the narrow confines of any such narrative inevitably brings some form of pushback."
Reading the whole essay will provide so much information. One of the great things about JMG's writing is that each essay is self contained - in that you can understand and follow the points he is making from within the essay and it flows from previous to future essays.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Poem - Maruia


seen these
hills before and I
see them again, they are
free cloaked, fully wrapped
in beech, a layering upon and their
uplifted moko grooved heads are gazing.

We've wandered upon their attired slopes, spongy steps
sank us, we balanced in our hands and slid
under the mottled trees in fragmented  light,. Our walk out, the uncomfortable
stream a silence, as still as a star and as

distantly afraid.

at my familiar face
facing me again reflective
and free, fully cloaked, wrapped,
a reach to uncover tangata whenua
for sure, though my fingers trace ancestry.

The nesting curve of your undulating hip, and an
ankle lightly lengthened, I suggest upon them
love phases invisibly chiselled. You absent-mindedly entwine my feet as I sleep,
dreaming a moment too small to sigh as

distances sway

I am
the growing
tip, life extended
I live on the distant hills
free, fully cloaked, wrapped
incessant pushing propels upward,
my feet knead the ground so slowly

Our sons collide quietly, a flood full of limb,
branching elbow unlocking a leg like a log,
the entanglement of us revealed unadorned and complete. We replay the scenes
of the past, the future as is now so

distinctly displayed

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

pretend caring and the erosion of indigenous rights

Some observations of the Kermadec Sanctuary proposal.

The opposition is based on the non consultation with Māori and the list of Māori opposed because of that is long, wide and varied. The days of riding rough-shot over tangata whenua are OVER. Māori WILL NOT sit while our rights get trampled and discarded.

The government can bleat on as much as it likes about 'saving the oceans' and 'what the people want' and in the same breath do NOTHING about the biggest most serious issue facing every single human and associated species - Climate Change is here and 'ocean sanctuaries' are a nothing response from a nothing government who sit alongside the other nothing governments around the world - while they all weep bullshit tears about the wee fishes - and continue to eat them no doubt. This is the bullshit hypocrisy of these politicians and other assorted names. They say one thing and do another. They are window dressing without any real care about this world or the people in it - let alone the ecosystems within the ocean. It is fake - believe me, it is fake concern from them.

This is one fight for Māori alongside other fights for the rights relating to water and land. Think about that. Rights agreed to over food, water and land are the big battles Māori are fighting at the moment - and Māori are fighting for these rights to be upheld for EVERYONE - so they don't get sold to corporates for profit, so they are available for all.

We will fight for as long as we need to, we will not stop fighting - not while the greedy, exploitative, corporate capitalists are there working with their mates in Parliament to take everything of value from all of us. No, the fight will continue.

Disclaimer - personally I'd stop a lot of fishing and other corporate food making and concentrate energies into sustainability and community. So I like sanctuaries everywhere and all over the place. But this is not about a sanctuary it is about indigenous rights and the ability of governments to disregard them whenever they want - no more will this happen - the lines are drawn and the lines are set.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

understand and you will be free

I've been an avid follower of John Michael Greer for a few years now - he has really helped me see the truth and reality of today and our tomorrows. His latest post is no exception
...May I please be frank? The reason that millions of Americans have had their standard of living hammered for forty years, while the most affluent twenty per cent have become even more affluent, is no mystery. What happened was that corporate interests in this country, aided and abetted by a bipartisan consensus in government and cheered on by the great majority of the salary class, stripped the US economy of living wage jobs by offshoring most of America’s industrial economy, on the one hand, and flooding the domestic job market with millions of legal and illegal immigrants on the other. 
That’s why a family living on one average full-time wage in 1966 could afford a home, a car, three square meals a day, and the other necessities and comforts of an ordinary American lifestyle, while a family with one average full time wage in most US cities today is living on the street. None of that happened by accident; no acts of God were responsible; no inexplicable moral collapse swept over the American wage class and made them incapable of embracing all those imaginary opportunities that salary class pundits like to babble about. That change was brought about, rather, by specific, easily identifiable policies. As a result, all things considered, blaming the American poor for the poverty that has been imposed on them by policies promoted by the affluent is the precise economic equivalent of blaming rape victims for the actions of rapists. 
In both cases, please note, blaming the victim makes a convenient substitute for talking about who’s actually responsible, who benefits from the current state of affairs, and what the real issues are. When that conversation is one that people who have a privileged role in shaping public discourse desperately don’t want to have, blaming the victim is an effective diversionary tactic, and accordingly it gets much use in the US media these days. There are, after all, plenty of things that the people who shape public discourse in today’s America don’t want to talk about. The fact that the policies pushed by those same shapers of opinion have driven millions of American families into poverty and misery isn’t the most unmentionable of these things, as it happens. The most unmentionable of the things that don’t get discussed is the fact that those policies have failed. 
It really is as simple as that. The policies we’re talking about—lavish handouts for corporations and the rich, punitive austerity schemes for the poor, endless wars in the Middle East and elsewhere, malign neglect of domestic infrastructure, and deer-in-the-headlights blank looks or vacuous sound bites in response to climate change and the other consequences of our frankly moronic maltreatment of the biosphere that keeps us all alive—were supposed to bring prosperity to the United States and its allies and stability to the world. They haven’t done that, they won’t do that, and with whatever respect is due to the supporters of Hillary Clinton, four more years of those same policies won’t change that fact. The difficulty here is simply that no one in the political establishment, and precious few in the salary class in general, are willing to recognize that failure, much less learn its obvious lessons or notice the ghastly burdens that those policies have imposed on the majorities who have been forced to carry the costs...
If you want to know what is really going on - read JMG, if you want an idea of how everything is likely to go over the next few years and decades - read JMG. If you are worried about your children's and their children's and their children's future - read JMG. Knowledge is power - the power to make it as good as it can be, the power to protect and nurture, the power to live simply in community sustainable and free. The power to fulfill our destinies. Don't give up your power because you are afraid of the knowledge. Embrace the knowing and the uncertainties, embrace the 'now' and let's work together for the future.

the dots join themselves

Isn't it amazing how unsurprised you can be.

Helen Clark going for the top UN job - as good as it gets I suppose, and that good isn't that good at all. I and many others haven't forgotten The Foreshore and Seabed legislation, the Terror Raids, the non endorsement of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the role that Helen Clark played in all of these things. She was the leader at the time and she blinked numerous times when it came to supporting tangata whenua. Somehow we here will be uplifted when she gets the top UN job - nah I don't think so. I don't begrudge Helen her top UN role, I'd just say it is a personal victory for her not a collective victory.

But she did get an endorsement from slippery key - some have said this is the payback for creating the impression that she supported the TPPA - who knows but when the Panama Papers show just how much the rich look after themselves - from all countries, and political persuasions, then well, the dots join themselves imo.

So I am surprised by how unsurprising I find these latest shenanigans.

Friday, April 1, 2016

telling the history

I agree that the histories of the Land Wars should be taught in our schools.


Calls are growing for more to be taught in schools about the New Zealand Land Wars.
Last year a petition was taken to Parliament to call for a day of recognition and for the events to be part of the school curriculum, but historians say it's a part of our history that's been brushed over.
...Prof Mulholland -- who will also make a select committee submission on a day of recognition for the wars -- says it's a vital part of our history and we need to do more to recognise it.
Personally I cannot see what objections there would be to this. It is a part of our history and it has helped form us to what we are today. The more we know and learn about these histories the stronger we will be. There is so much emotion around those times and that is an indication that healing is needed. Being able to share histories is healing for all concerned. And share is the operative word - share -- listen and learn and clarify and listen and learn - we learn more by listening in the moment rather than thinking of what rebuttal we will use when they stop speaking.

I think it should be compulsory. And as you'd expect I'd widen the areas that need to be covered. The Treaty of course, and histories of tangata whenua should also be taught. From those histories will come understanding and a coming together. It will not right all the wrongs but ignorance is blighting us and causing distrust and fear and we cannot allow that to continue.

For me I'd keep everything discrete as in separate. So the histories of The Land Wars and their effects are one topic and each area is another topic rather than putting everything together - this would maintain the Mana of the issues and keep the focus on those issues. They will naturally lead to the next issues which can then be looked at in detail.

Imagine the opportunities if this was done - the connections built between peoples and generations, 

Saturday, March 19, 2016

the past is teaching us

I've wanted this for so long and now it is here - what a fantastic series this will be judging from the first episodeKairākau.

Māori TV

The director of an explosive new series on Māori Television says language and culture were the most important pillars in creating the series. Rangi Rangitukunoa directed Kairākau which depicts stories of Māori warriors from the past.It's been a labour of love for Rangi Rangitukunoa for the last nine months. Now that work has come to fruition.“The difference between this show and others is that it is entirely about the Māori world, the language, Tūmatauenga and acting. More importantly though, these are true stories, we didn't just make them up,” says director Rangitukunoa...“As Māori, we should stand proud in telling our stories. Some people might think this programme is just about fighting, but actually it's also about our ancestors and bringing their stories back to life,” says Rangitukunoa.
Yes and these histories will now get a wider audience and that is the way it should be - this is our history, this is our heritage, these are our warriors and heroes. Check out the facebook page too.
So I recommend you watch and we can all learn together, and as we learn, we will grow closer, we will grow tighter and this is the way of the future - by understanding our past we will move to the future - there is no other way to do it.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

156 years ago the shot was fired

A day to remember - our history is us and until we acknowledge our history we will not move on. Change the flag??? - change the attitudes, the attitudes to remembering out history.

156 years ago today, the first shot in the Taranaki land wars was fired. The conflict resulted in Taranaki iwi suffering massive loss of life and land. This flashpoint was also the precursor to the NZ Land Wars where millions of acres were confiscated from tribes throughout the North Island. Today, the event was commemorated in Waitara, the site where fighting first broke out.
The beautiful thing is if we do remember we can  bind us all together tighter as a country, as a people.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

anything is not better than nothing

Differing viewpoints are valuable. Hone Harawira has a view on the flag debate
“The NZ flag is the one flown by every government since the 1860s that has ever stolen our land, laughed at our Treaty rights, destroyed our spirituality, stomped on our culture, imprisoned our people, and tried to kill off our language.” 
“It’s the flag of colonialism, given to us and every other colony by the Poms back in the 1800s. 80% have since dumped it; only the colonial urchins like Aussie, the Cooks, Tuvalu and us still fly that ugly little Union Jack that represents the country that called us to war when they needed help and dumped us when they wanted to join the European Union.
That is all very true and this is the truth of the situation. The Union Jack represents so much suffering for Māori, so much lost and destroyed. It is the best representation of that imo because it directly relates to those times and connects us visually and internationally as a colonised country. The Union Jack must go - of that there is no doubt.
The question then is what will replace it - and the poor attempt and rigged selections are not the answer to that. The cost, the vanity project of the PM, the lack of consultation and real discussion, the celebrities, the endorsements, the play on emotions, the contrived nature of the whole process including the final design say that NO this is not the correct or even near desired alternative. It simply is not good enough for anything.
As I said on another post
I'm pleased that I have voted for our current flag against the other one put up by key and his supporters. For me the tino rangatiratanga flag is my flag. The union jack has so many connotations relating to the colonisation of this country and I cannot get enthusiastic about it at all - I don't like it. But until we as a country are ready to embrace our past and move forward in partnership, as promised by The Treaty, then I will vote for the flag that actually represents us the way we are - warts and all. And there are lots of warts indeed. There is much work to be done to pave the way to allow a true flag for this country to come forth - I'll be working towards that.
and it is worth noting that Hone are in 100% agreement on a few things
“I’ve already chosen the flag that fits best with my heart, my soul, my life – the Maori flag. It’s the one that we designed, it carries the colours of my world, and it speaks of our history, our place in the cosmos, and the possibilities that lie ahead of us all.” 
“And it was the flag that Maori people overwhelmingly chose when we ran our own flag referendum (government spent $28.57 on the whole shebang).
and sometimes not 100%
“And don’t buy the drivel about us losing the Treaty if we change the flag. We lose the Treaty the day we lose the balls to stand up and fight for our rights, not because somebody wants to change the NZ flag.” 
“Changing the flag is a conscious decision to say goodbye to our colonial past and say hello to a brighter future. Maori people have already done it. Might be time for the rest of New Zealand to follow suit”
Changing the flag imo will make it harder to implement The Treaty. It will be another blocker that those who don't want true partnership will use to delay and disrupt that implementation. Sure they will do that anyway but why give them another tool to use.
Difference of opinion is valuable - it helps to see and hear other views. It is healthy and necessary. I feel good within myself about my decision - I want to change the flag so, so much but until we have a proper flag that truly represents us I will stay with the one we have.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

inequality - oppose and change it

It is International Women' Day today. The inequality that women face, pretty well everywhere, is unacceptable to me, as a man, All men must bear responsibility for this inequality and all men must work with women to oppose and change the inequity. I wish all of the women of the world a better today and an even better tomorrow. Today I am going to contemplate the powerful and important women of my life. My mother, my wife, my sister, my nieces, my grandmothers, my tūpuna, Papatūānuku , Hineahuone and Hine-nui-te-pō.

Facts about the day - where it came from and why it is still needed from The Independant.
Socialists first put forward the idea of advancing women's suffrage through a day to mark women's enormous contribution to humankind.
An annual "international women's day" was first organised by the German socialist and theorist Clara Zetkin along with 100 delegates from 17 countries in March 1911...
Today, when only a fifth of parliamentary seats are held by women and only 19 heads of state out of a possible 196 are women - only seven more women than 20 years ago - there is much progress still to be made.
The number of female cabinet ministers has at least tripled between 1994 and 2014 - but remains low compared to men, at only 17 per cent...
The United Nations first began celebrating the day on 8 March in 1975, and each year has given focus to women's status around the globe.
The current goals fit in with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The new agenda, which is meant to build on the unfulfilled Milennium Development Goals, has a stand-alone goal just for the empowerment of women and girls as a core means of tackling economic underperformance, global overpopulation and poverty worldwide.
It also celebrates the achievements of women throughout history...
Aside from the older motivations surrounding political office and the pay gap, there is also increasing awareness of the disproportionate amount of abuse women suffer at the hands of others.
An estimated 120 million girls and women under the age of 20 have been subjected to forced sexual intercourse or other forced sexual acts - around 10 per cent...
More than a third of women worldwide have also experienced physical or sexual violence at some point in their lives, with this being most common between a woman's teenage years and menopause.
Meanwhile, nearly a quarter of a billion more women are in the global workforce today than a decade ago, but they are only earning what men did in 2006, according to the World Economic Forum.
And one in 10 married women are not consulted by their husbands on how their own cash earnings will be spent.
The inequality women face is almost absurd if it wasn't so devastating - come on humanity GROW UP

Monday, March 7, 2016

good decision by Landcorp

This is good news that Landcorp are backing away from giving forest to dairy. The benefits of forest hardly need saying but we will be, and are, thankful for all of the remaining forests. We must stop the chopping wherever it occurs.

From RNZ
State-owned farming company Landcorp has confirmed it is backing away from a massive planned dairy conversion in the central North Island... 
RNZ News earlier reported that Landcorp had come to the realisation that the environmental impacts of its conversions in the Waikato were simply too great. 
Mr Carden said 14500ha of former forestry land earmarked for dairy farming at the estate would now have alternative uses.
We must plant more forests. Planned and unplanned forests. We must dig up the berms, the verges and plant communal fruit and nut trees, as well as assorted gardens. We must enforce that 20% of all land is converted to forest - and not pine trees. We must focus also on reclaiming wetlands - those essential places where land becomes sea. A transition zone. Our future depends upon this.

a terrible story, retold

The voice of reason is still struggling, so to help out

imo saying one set of atrocities against an indigenous population is better or worse than another set of atrocities against another indigenous population is not the way indigenous communities think about or remember or frame these things. This is a construct designed by colonisers and their descendants to miminise and justify their actions or maybe just to mitigate guilt. Totally understandable and almost subtle because as people do, they can use this to go to a better/worse dichotomy and this leads to the "what are you moaning about" lines. There are many other reasons too, such as the intensely personal side of the lived knowledge of the past.

To then say stuff like, 'tell that to the victims of genocide' shows an extreme defensive mode where attack is the only alternative. The point I make in the first paragraph is pretty basic but only if you listen.

And please don't think for a second that I am unaware of 'intent', 'the end of empire', 'genocide' and 'atrocities'. I am, and each of them was a blot on us all. The suffering that has occurred is immeasurable , almost unknowable, and it is known.  Indigenous communities around the world, even today, face each and every one of the destructive forces aligned against them. That s why indigenous communities should stick together and work together and build new /old ways of thinking for this troubled world.

The measurement of atrocities is more than numbers although the numbers do tell a terrible story, just not the full story. The comparison of what has happened to indigenous communities through colonisation, compares suffering to suffering, not numbers to numbers imo.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Rest in peace Berta Cáceres (Lenca)

It is such a terrible crime that Indigenous Honduran leader Berta Cáceres (Lenca) was murdered recently. My heartfelt condolences to everyone feeling the loss especially her family.

From Indian Country Today
"Cáceres was internationally known for winning the 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize for her advocacy on behalf of the Lenca people, who have been battling against the construction of the Agua Zarca hydroelectric dam on the Gualcarque River, as well as her frequent opposition to the U.S.-sanctioned coup government and subsequent administrations of Honduras."
... "Cáceres was the Director of the National Council of Indigenous and Popular Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), which has been in the forefront of protests against the dam being constructed by the DESA Company of Honduras. Cáceres and other activists assert that the Agua Zarca project would cause great harm to the Lenca community known as Rio Blanco through displacement of the people and environmental damage to an area considered sacred by the Lenca."
Going up against the corporate interests is very dangerous and she knew that, having had many threats made against her. Still she fought the fight for her people.. We have all lost a powerful and effective advocate and passionate warrior for indigenous rights and environmental rights. Rest In Peace.

And we must fight on in our ways to continue the work - that is what we must do.

change your name or lift your game buddy - updated

Sadly, rude and offensive behavior continues from the inappropriately named te reo putake - of course the macron is not used - why should it be - after all this name is just a type of brownwash - where stuff gets 'used' to further an agenda which is not aligned with tangata whenua. So voice of reason can change his name to te reo pukake to piss off the right wingers. Now why would they be pissed off? because someone with a Māori sounding name is getting into them? Yeah I suppose that would wind you up. But has there been any consideration for Māori in any of that - no there hasn't. Why not? Same reason the macron isn't used - it is not the point and that is why it is brownwash. This is part of the reason why my voice is not heard on The Standard anymore.

The Standard is a good essential, left wing mostly, blog and I do recommend visiting it, as I do.

Just to confirm I have agreed a few times with voice of reason's comments over the years and I am quite happy with robust debate, even abuse and swearwords where appropriate. But if you are going to appropriate Māori sounding name then that bestows obligations to Māori whether you like it or not - live up to that and everyone will be better off.

Footnote. Poor voice still doesn't understand the issues as he explains here - this is typical from him and I notice he's having a go at another moderator too. Just to help him I'll repost the last-ish comment i made to him that he deleted and see if he can understand that.

"You, voice have belittled me with your “real genocide” line and that I, by trying to explain things to you, have diminished those who have suffered “real genocide”. DO YOU GET THAT? Now you can say I shouldn’t feel belittled but I have given you concrete example of why I do feel that. DO YOU GET THAT? Now you say you haven’t even been able to make sense of the discussion – ” Seriously, this discussion has made little sense from the get go”. That shows me you have been arguing in BAD faith for NO good reason. That shows me you are a self righteous prick of the first order."