Wednesday, December 29, 2010

moon in maori shadow

Is it news that they think they have timed when maori arrived on these islands?
"High-precision radiocarbon dating shows recent and rapid initial human colonization of East Polynesia" - The results indicate New Zealand was first colonised by humans between 1210 and 1385 AD.

Apparentlty it is - especially for moon
AUT University History Professor, Paul Moon said the study might have "far-reaching implications for Maori oral history".
Maori oral histories which recall lists of ancestors have been used to date the first arrival in New Zealand as early as 800 AD, Dr Moon said.
"If these Maori whakapapa [genealogies] are out by over five hundred years, then this must raise questions about their reliability.
"If Maori reached New Zealand waters just 300 years before the first Europeans, some people might also start to reconsider the idea of Maori being indigenous. It could be interpreted as a different type of 'indigenous' from the sort that applies to peoples who inhabited countries exclusively for thousands of years. This would be an unfortunate conclusion to draw, but is something that might have to be faced."
What a load of bullshit those paragraphs are - moon doesn't have a clue what whakapapa says. This - trying to unpack whakapapa and imprint it upon some arbitary pakeha historical line - is bogus and up there with percy smith and his fraudulent great fleet myths used to further the colonists aims. And as for the redefinition of indigenous by moon - it tells us all we need to know about him and none of it is good.

IMO the true history of when and where maori arrived is known - contained within whakapapa - there are no discrepancies, no misunderstandings, no mix up of events or their significance. While an inquiring mind is deliberately pretending to be open, it will never see or hear the truth and even if it does, it won't recognise it - but that doesn't mean the truth is not there. These studies and their dubious intrepretations are another form of colonisation - they want to own all of our ideas and beliefs and fit them into their narrow, constricted worldview - but they cannot win - the ideas they slavishly follow are unnatural.

As justin on Te Karere Ipurangi says
And there is Moon at the ready to yet again shit on Maori. Moon needs to ask himself this question. Other than his ever dying quest to expose myth….that is to say, the way scientific, math and historical data are translated into everyday speak….in Maori cultural history, what other contribution to the pool of knowledge has he brought to the table?
The findings from this study are myth Mr Moon, they are interpretations of data into a human story, and its not the data that is flawed, it is your interpretation of their interpretation that is the thing that is flawed.
...That is essentially the issue at hand here. All those people groups are then left out of receiving such a prestigious title of being indigenous. Because they were never first into an area, basically consuming that area then learning to live in balance with it, then being colonised themselves, the only title that many of these groups have been left with those of invaders, colonisers, pillagers and immigrants.
That’s the central core issue with Pakeha myth makers like Moon, and it doesn’t take a psychic to detect this feeling of inferiority through most of what he has to say concerning his interpretation of Maori history. He has sadly joined the line of Pakeha trying to write themselves into a more important role in the history of Te Ika a Maui me tona Waka.
Well said justin.

Friday, December 24, 2010

make the most

This time of year can be stressful and within our distress we can be hard on ourselves and others. You are not alone, you are not an island or a rock - it is okay to feel but we must accept responsibility for our feelings and what we do with them. Reach out and ask for help if you need it - don't be afraid - just ask for help.

The buy, buy, buy constant barrage is hard to handle - try making something or being creative. I'm giving my brothers and their families a scrapbook, some glitter, a gluepen and coloured pencils - the scrapbook is entitled "Our happy holiday memories". That is a $20, 5 person present that everyone can get into. Grandparents can write and draw pictures - the kids can stick things in there and record their impressions of the days with help from mum and dad - shells, sand, sticks and leaves can be added. I am imagining that in 20 years the scrapbook can be reopened and the memories will rekindle.

The big challenge I find is to just allow the season to flow. There is no point fighting it - it is a waste of energy. Much better to flow with it and use it to further our aims - to grow communities - to bring people together - to be kind to ourselves and others. Rest and relax - swim and walk - smile and laugh. Connect with the beauty of nature and the other inhabitants of our world - admire the majesty of papatuanuku, the glory of mother earth. Recharge and energise for the challenges to come. And love, always love.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Tree of Life

I have to say i like Brad Pitt as an actor and Sean Penn too. This movie promo makes me want to see the movie - I await the rollercoaster ride of emotion to come because that is the power of movies to and for me - the transformation and suspension of disbelief, the immersion - and final surfacing into clear fresh air.
The film follows the life journey of the eldest son, Jack, through the innocence of childhood to his disillusioned adult years as he tries to reconcile a complicated relationship with his father (Brad Pitt). Jack (played as an adult by Sean Penn) finds himself a lost soul in the modern world, seeking answers to the origins and meaning of life while questioning the existence of faith. Through Malick's signature imagery, we see how both brute nature and spiritual grace shape not only our lives as individuals and families, but all life.

Hat tip - Archive Fire - An awesome blog I recommend visiting often.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

petroleum report - crown-clowns won't like it

Now I think my views on exploration and exploitation of minerals, oil, gas and coal are well known on this blog but to allay fears - I would not allow ANY more mining at all if I had my way - NONE.

The Waitangi Tribunal has just released a pre-report on the management of the petroleum resource. I am not going to go into the rights and wrongs of my first statement above but rather focus on the report itself.

Why were the claims instigated?
The claims were brought by Ngāruahine of Taranaki and Ngāti Kahungūnu of Hawke’s Bay and Wairarapa. In essence, these tribes claim that the regime for the management of petroleum, as governed by the Crown Minerals Act 1991 and the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA), is in breach of Treaty principles. In their view, three fundamental problems underlie the regime:
• the substance of the law is biased against Māori interests and culture, in favour of conflicting interests;
• the processes established to apply the law fail to ensure that there is effective participation by Māori to safeguard their interests and actually deter, and sometimes deny, Māori involvement; and
• Māori communities do not have the capacity to overcome the obstacles to their effective participation in the system because there are no reliable and sufficient sources of assistance available to them.
and the Waitangi Tribunal says
In sum, we find that there are systemic flaws in the operation of the current regime for managing the petroleum resource. They arise from the combined effect of the following features:
• the limited capacity of ‘iwi authorities’ (tribal government) to take the role envisaged for them in the regime, and the Crown’s failure to provide adequate or appropriate assistance, despite acknowledging the problem;
• the Crown’s failure, despite its Treaty responsibility, to protect Māori interests, to provide local authorities with clear policy guidance and to require them to adopt processes that ensure appropriate Māori involvement in key decisions; and
• the low level of engagement with te ao Māori and Māori perspectives that is exhibited by central and local government decision-makers.
The result, we consider, is that decision-makers tend to minimise Māori interests, and elevate other interests, in their decisions about the petroleum resource. Consequently, neither the regime nor its outcomes are consistent with Treaty principles. The prejudice is that Māori cannot protect their lands, waters, and other tāonga, nor exercise their kaitiakitanga, in the manner or to the degree that they are entitled under the Treaty, and that the law envisages.
... Also, we think that the Crown Minerals Act should be amended to provide greater protection to Māori land, enabling Māori landowners to refuse access where that is their wish. We do not accept that the small, surviving Māori land base should have less protection in respect of petroleum than it is accorded in respect of other Crown minerals. To ensure that decisions are made by the fullest possible collective of owners, permit holders should be required to seek access permission from a meeting of assembled owners, as provided for under Te Ture Whenua Maori Act 1993.

The crown's failure this and the crown failure that. We know this but it is good to have it summarised after due consideration - they cannot hide from this type of report - it skewers them against the wall. But of course they will hide and run - they can't help themselves. Key will say "petroleum is not on the table and never will be", brownlee will just blah blah in his useless way. But there are groups of people who will not get pushed off the path and they will continue to poke this report in their eye and in their spokes.

proof we are winning

We must be winning when they put out this type of stuff. Clowns and rednecks - says it all really.

Hat tip - Kiwiblog

reclaiming us

A brilliant analysis of how colonisation has instituted alien concepts of patriarchy and heirarchy into maori society and distorted ideas of mana and whakapapa especially for maori men by Ani Mikaere presented at the 27th Annual Conference of the Law and Society Association of Australia and New Zealand, Victoria University of Wellington, 10 December 2010. Full presentation here.

Some important paragraphs which convey the message of truth.

It is important, particularly in the context of a discussion of leadership, to note that the presence of balance necessarily negates the concept of dominance and its corollary, subservience.  The principle of hierarchy has no place in a conception of reality that asserts the interconnectedness of all living things and that requires the perpetual nurturing of relationships to ensure the maintenance of equilibrium.
Early colonists in Aotearoa needed a strategy for dealing with an indigenous population to whom the concept of hierarchy was completely foreign... The solution lay in giving a significant proportion of the target population (in this case, Māori) a stake in the hierarchy.  What better way to convince a group of people to buy into a system of rank than by reassuring them that their rightful place in the pecking order was higher than that of another group? What more effective divide and rule tactic than convincing half of the Māori population that they were inherently superior to the other half?
In Aotearoa, the means utilized to institute patriarchy can be divided into two main categories.  The first comprised actions that consistently privileged Māori men over Māori women.  The second involved the reinterpretation of Māori philosophy so as to erase all memory of its true nature and to convince Māori that patriarchy and hierarchy had always been entrenched in our beliefs about the nature of reality.
In the context of this conference, however, a more important question might be what each of you can do to contribute to resolving the crisis that we currently face. The first thing you must do, wherever you find yourself placed in the white male hierarchy that infects the colonial state of New Zealand, is to acknowledge your privilege.  If you choose to enjoy the benefits of that privilege without acknowledging it, and without actively challenging a system that relegates Māori to a lesser status or that reserves to itself the right to redefine Māori philosophies at whim, you are complicit in the continued subordination of Māori in our own land.
Specifically, you should seize any opportunity to challenge the expectation that Māori ought to speak with one voice.  You should regard with suspicion versions of our philosophical framework that conveniently characterise us as inherently patriarchal or that saddle us with Western notions of hierarchy.
That is very good advice for all of us and the value of the presentation is that the alien concepts are identified and shown to be imposed and then solutions are offered. We cannot fix things without all of these steps.

Hat tip - Te Whaainga Wahine

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

star bright moon night

I am celebrating tonight - the summer solstice and a lunar eclipse. Here in Mohua the clouds are lifting and I believe the view will be awesome. Perfect for me and a mate to drum, and drink and chat. Catching up with friends and sharing experiences - that is so important and at this time of year we have the perfect excuse, if we need one, and i don't. :)

Monday, December 20, 2010

hiding from the authorities

Remember the dawn raids?

From Stuff
Dawn raids, which began under the Muldoon government in 1974, were a controversial campaign to arrest and deport any Pacific Island overstayers. Many had been encouraged to come to New Zealand to fill a labour shortage in the 1960s, but when the economy tightened in the 1970s there was a clampdown on overstayers. Police launched a campaign of dawn raids on Pacific Island households around the country and Pacific Islanders were routinely stopped on the streets on the suspicion that they might be overstayers.
During that time pasifica people were hidden from authorities.
Porirua city councillor Litea Ah Hoi says "It just reminds me of the dawn raid days when my dad hid Samoan overstayers in the bedroom closet."
The same hiding of people is occuring today.
Fefiloi Ana, 36, an overstayer who was ordered to leave the country by today or be forcibly removed, has gone into hiding with her children, Ranford, 12, Mine, 11, and Misipeka, 7. The children, whose father died in a motorbike accident in 2004, were born in New Zealand and are entitled to stay as New Zealand citizens.
Why is this happening?
Earlier this year she was ordered to leave after the immigration Removal Review Authority declined to make an exception on humanitarian grounds. Associate Immigration Minister Kate Wilkinson declined to intervene, and now Children's Commissioner John Angus cannot investigate due to the lack of time.
With the current focus on building strong families, the deportation did not make sense, Ms Kim Barnden, a youth worker and Mine's basketball coach at Avalon Intermediate said. "Mrs Ana is very kind and the kids adore her. Breaking up any family is unhealthy and I don't think the welfare of the kids has been taken into consideration. They've lost their dad, what else do we want to put them through?"
Those are fair questions and this persecution is totally unjust and must be stopped. Our pasifica cousins are welcome here - they are family and this practice of deportation and breaking up of families is unacceptable in any society. The family are hiding - they are scared and traumatised and we must support them.

The dawn raids were a blight on this country and the fear generated played into the authorities hands. They created distrust and set people against each other - based on ethnic origin and skin colour and today the same thing is happening.

Friday, December 17, 2010

settlement brings joy

Congratulations to Ngati Pahauwera iwi who sign their Treaty settlement in Hawke's Bay today.

From Stuff
Iwi negotiator Toro Waaka expects about 1000 people to attend the ceremony at Waipapa-a-Iwi Marae, north of Napier.
"There's a lot of joy among all our people ... that we've finally nutted this out," Mr Waaka said yesterday. "It's taken 20 years." The iwi receive assets worth up to $70 million and an apology from the Crown.

The iwi has just over 7000 registered members and its territory is centred on the Mohaka River, extending north almost to Wairoa.
Two farms and 1087ha of Conservation Department land are also part of the agreement. Reserve land would remain open to the public, Mr Waaka said.
The deal includes $2m for river enhancement initiatives, which will apply particularly to the Mohaka and its tributary the Taharua, both of which have become polluted. A decline in whitebait, long-finned eels and other creatures in these rivers was concerning the iwi, he said.
This is a start for this iwi and it is good that the settlement has been agreed to. Each step in the right direction gets us closer to the goal.

"We've got to be pragmatic," Mr Waaka said. "There's no way the Crown could repay all the land it's taken and all the resources it's taken.
"Our ancestors were petitioning the Crown in the 1850s and 1860s."

sicko/s in southland

The black-billed gull is only found in this country - it looks like a red-billed gull except for the difference in bill colour - as you'd expect. Why oh why has some sicko in southland gone out and shot, and smacked to death over 100 of them? There is no rational reason - but these people or this person is still out there and whilst a human - their partner or child - don't look like Black-billed gulls - who can say that they won't be next.

From Stuff
More than 100 of the rarest gulls in the world were massacred as they nested near Wreys Bush in Southland.
Department of Conservation Murihiku biodiversity ranger Ros Cole said more than 100 adult black-billed gulls were found dead beside the Aparima River at Wreys Bush on November 24.
Most of the birds died from bullet wounds, but others had broken bones and some chicks were found starving to death beside their dead parents, she said.
Shotgun cartridges were found beside some nests and an autopsy confirmed shotgun pellets were the most likely cause of death, Ms Cole said. "They have gone into the colony and gone mad. It's pretty sad that people want to shoot these birds and leave the chicks to starve," she said.
DOC Murihiku compliance and law enforcement ranger Kelwyn Osborn said the shooting was the third involving the endangered native gull in two months.
The THIRD!!! This is getting sicker and sicker - who is doing this and can you guarantee they won't do the same thing to their family or anyone else.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

I don't trust you - not even slightly

I take nothing that gerry brownlee does or says at face value. I can't trust him and whenever he does something i wonder how he thinks it will advance his agenda. His combining of the minerals reviews is an example where i get a funny feeling that there is more going on than meets the eye.

From Scoop
Energy and Resources Minister Gerry Brownlee announced today that the review of the Crown Minerals Act (1991) and the review of associated minerals programmes and regulations will now be considered as a single package.
“It was originally envisaged that the review of the Crown Minerals Act would be complete by November this year, and a bill introduced into the House in December 2010. “A second phase of consultation on revised minerals programmes for petroleum and for minerals other than petroleum, and on the various regulations, was to follow in 2011,”
“However, submitters have been clear that they want the opportunity to comment on all aspects of the minerals management regime at the same time. “Releasing the package as a whole will enable people to comment on discrete changes and the overall proposed system. People will also be able to see how the first set of submissions has been considered.”
The problem I have is, as I said, i just don't trust gerry - not one little bit and I cannot help wondering what advantages he thinks he will get from a combined review. He is not netural on this issue - he is definately in the exploitation camp and that camp loves framing everything like this.
blah blah blah ... which aims to maximise the gains from New Zealand's petroleum resources for the benefit of all New Zealanders.“blah blah blah ... and for the maximisation of economic returns to New Zealand from our mineral resources,” Mr Brownlee said.
The lines are set - we know where this person sits and we will fight their sick idea of "maximisation of economic returns" because we know where the profit goes - into the hands of big big business, often based overseas.

stop the shit

A terrible decision from the Environment Court that allows the Wairoa District Council to spray 52,000 cubic metres of treated effluent over a 30 hectare site on the Mahia Peninsula - residents and Maori oppose this. Residents are concerned about the massive increase in rates that this will cause and maori are upset because the waste will be spread over an area that is sacred and important for tangata whenua.

From Radio NZ
Spokesperson Mere Whaanga says her iwi is offended by the plans to spray effluent over the site where men, women and children were slaughtered by another tribe.
"Imagine if the Turkish authorities decided to spray human effluent over Gallipoli," she said.
"This massacre site is so important, not only to the Whaanga family but to Mahia history, it's a comparable insult."
Yes it is but that insult is given little consideration from the Environment Court.
The Environment Court has ruled the benefits to the community outweigh cultural and historical concerns.

We will know when we are making progress when decisions like this don't occur and when cultural and historical concerns outweigh the so called community benefits. How can the community benefit when a significant section of the community oppose the move - it is oxymoronic.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

opening our eyes

When we make a mistake it can take years to remedy. Recently a film scout drove into a high country wetland to film some shots for an overseas car commercial. The damage to this area will take at least 50 years to remedy - 50 years. Now sure the area didn't have signposts or warnings and the film scout says they followed tyre tracks already going in - those are fair reasons and they highlight the concern - most people are not aware of the importance and significance of our wetland areas - where are they? The big ones are known but we need to increase the visability of lessor known areas to stop this destruction occuring.

From ODT
A film location scout criticised for damaging a high country wetland in the Nevis Valley area while filming a 4WD advertisement admits he made a mistake, but says he had no idea the bog was a "fragile" ecosystem.
The ecosystem had a diverse native plant community and was also home to distinctive wetland invertebrates.
Graham Thompson (the film scout) said many 4WD vehicles and several motorcyclists went through that piece of land while he was there.
"I consider myself a conservator and I would never in a million years have gone in there had I known it was a valuable conservation area."
"It's not like it was a pristine, amazing area. There were sets of tyre tracks all through it."
What is pristine? Our ideas of natures beauty are framed by all of the media images we get and we need to adjust that view and look at all areas - for their inherent beauty. This is not a blame issue - we just have to open our eyes.

Monday, December 13, 2010


This is a great initiative - this time of year can be difficult for many people. Tensions rise as expectations are unable to be met, often women and children suffer increased abuse and violence. Money is short and there are so many endless messages telling us to buy and spend. When you add in the beaches and the fear deceitfully generated around who can go and have a swim - it is no wonder that many struggle. The answer is within this song and the intent behind it.

Family-whanau-community is the answer. We are constantly forced to see and think of ourselves as seperate from others - it is structural and difficult to resist. But it can be resisted - by coming together in love and connection. Any excuse to generate community and togetherness is welcome and it is up to all of us to take the first steps. Ring your relative - the one you had a falling out with. Say gidday to your neighbour - the one you have seen many times. Working together will save us all.

Kiwi Kiwi Christmas ... Song by For the Auckland City Mission Please give generously from allan johnston on Vimeo.

A group of beneficiaries released a Christmas carol with a very distinct kiwi feel and a whole lot of heart. The troupe of unemployed musicians met less than a month ago at a seminar put together by the The Depot and wrote "A Kiwi Christmas" in an hour and recorded it in record time.
Instead of seeing this as a quick money making scheme, the musos have agreed that all proceeds from the sale of the song will go to people even more strapped for income this Christmas season and will donate those takings to the Auckland City Mission.​online_payment.php?action=submit
For additional information, to arrange interviews or images contact:
Adee Keil (The Depot): Home (09) 372-9566, Cell (027) 631 5358

Hat tip - Happyzine

Essential to all

Great news that Te Ana Ngai Tahu's Rock Art Centre in Timaru has just opened. This is so good for everyone. The taonga are respected and treasured and guests can visit, the community are involved and it is bringing all people together. This is the way to do it .

From The Timaru Herald
After years of planning, Te Ana Ngai Tahu's Rock Art Centre has had an emotional opening.
About 200 people gathered for a chance to celebrate the opening ceremony in Timaru yesterday.
 The centre is hugely significant for Ngai Tahu," Mr Solomon said.
"It is the culmination of years of hard work and devotion to protecting and preserving this important cultural and historical taonga for the iwi and now we have the perfect showcase for sharing it with the world."
One look was not enough for locals Tewera King and Koriana Waller, who said they were not the only ones popping back for another look.
"It's our taonga. Not all of us have been out to see the rock art. For a person who knows nothing about the local iwi, it's all there," Mrs Waller said.
"It's just an awesome resource for the local community and our visitors to learn about taonga and resources."
Not only did the centre present the rock art, but it also showed other practices in the area such as eeling and collecting kai. "I thought it was just the rock art, but there's more in there."
Mr King said the centre was brilliant and had a good balance of information and activities.
I can't wait to visit the center. Congratulations to Gerard and the team for this kaupapa. The centre is open to all and that is the way it is done.

Friday, December 10, 2010

tempting buns are not for revenue?

The department of conservation - the title would imply protection and conservation but is that what they actually do? We have seen the enroachment of commercial interests into the conservation estate - the stall at Cathedral Cove, for instance. The director general of the department of conservation has had some hard questions to answer and his answers don't convince me.

From Stuff
Battling with a $54 million budget cut has shifted the Conservation Department's focus toward reaping commercial rewards – but this does not mean the environment will suffer, its director-general says.
Al Morrison has fended off Green Party accusations that it is focusing on attracting big business at the expense of biodiversity.
That budget cut is real and a disgrace.
Morrison - When you say we have got a commercial focus, what it means is we have a lot of New Zealand involved in conservation ... the untapped part in involving New Zealand in conservation is in business. It is not, I can assure you, so we can get lots of revenue."

The untapped part??? What is he talking about. It is untrue to say that you have had a budget cut and are courting commercial interests but not for revenue - why are you doing it then al?
Green MP Kevin Hague at an environment select committee meeting yesterday argued there was an obvious tension between the department's needs to maintain a focus on conservation values and trying to make inroads into business.
For example, when an icecream kiosk opened at Coromandel's Cathedral Cove beach last year, a flurry of angry emails went to Prime Minister John Key and then conservation minister Tim Groser, saying DOC's decision to allow commerce on the beach was "philosophically wrong". This showed that trying to make money from conservation land in this way was misplaced, he said.
But Mr Morrison said only a handful of people had objected and, on his visit to the beach, the vendor was not a nuisance – and was in fact selling "tempting" buns.
So we go from philosophically wrong to tempting buns. That is a fail in my book - it doesn't answer the question regarding the underlying philosophy - or maybe it actually does - (shudder).

Good on the greens for skewering this spinner.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


Labour - what a joke. They are now not supporting the repeal of their Foreshore and Seabed legislation - it has become a farce goff says, let maori go to the courts he implores. Does he actually believe in anything apart from the frenetic desire to get power back?

My comment on The Standard is this
Well I spose at least the maori labour MP’s will maybe feel better about following their voting instructions now – it always seems weird that they and their team were supporting the repeal of labours own act. And if it becomes a festering sore for labour to inherit they can always do what they did before, can’t they – but it will depend on how many votes they think they will get or lose, as per usual.
But Tariana says it all with this comment from Stuff
Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia mocked the change of heart from Labour.
"I would say they've been watching all the representations that have come to the committee. They think that every Maori in the country is against it, but what they don't realise is that there's not one Maori in the country that's forgotten what they did.''
I am against the Bill because I believe it doesn't empower maori. labour and goff are opposed because they might lose votes and that is why I won't vote for that party or that fake.

personal lament

I miss my son

influencing the spin

Ngai Tahu Kaiwhakahaere Mark Solomon has responded to farrar at kiwiblog via a letter. He outlines where farrar just got things wrong. It is good that Solomon is getting into the blogs and reading up - I am disappointed that he can take the time to reply to the gnats spinmeister (who often has disgusting comments on his posts) but he can't be bothered replying to some of the posts made here which ask some tough questions - like where is the mandate to consider mining on our land - was it debated at Hui a Tau? Kiwiblog is this countries favorite blog - but I think it is poor - well short of The Standard in terms of quality of posts and comments.

It could be that Solomon agrees with everything being said here - I am pretty sure that he knows this blog exists :)

Hat tip - Kiwiblog

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Kirsty MacColl - always remembered

I am posting this again (same as last year) because this wonderful singer and person must not be forgotten.

hope springs eternal

Well the maori party have got their constitutional review and the terms of reference include reviewing

From Stuff

Maori representation, including the Maori Electoral Option, Maori electoral participation and Maori seats in Parliament and local government.
The role of the Treaty of Waitangi within New Zealand's constitutional arrangements.
Whether New Zealand should have a written constitution.
Bill of Rights issues.
Based on maori party progress to date I am not confident that this review won't be used to reduce rights for maori and further the oppression. These sentences outline why
''Of course, we will keep in mind that enduring constitutional changes generally require a broad base of support. Significant change will not be undertaken lightly and will require either broad cross-party agreement or the majority support of voters at a referendum,'' Deputy Prime Minister English said.
Yes the majority must support any change and will they endorse change that empowers maori and acknowledges Maori status as tangata whenua, the indigenous people of this land?

Why is change needed?

From Annette Sykes
Statistics continue to reflect the poor socio-economic state of most Maori. The Maori unemployment rate is twice as high as non-Maori, and 1 out of 4 Maori recieve a benefit compared to one out of 10 non-Maori. Maori are 3 times more likely to live in overcrowded household compared to non-Maori. Only 2 out of 5 Maori are completing secondary education with a Level Two certificate compared to 2 out of 3 non-Maori. While maori currently represent around 13% of the general population we make up 51% of the prison population. In 2006 Maori accounted for 43% of all police apprehensions. Maori life expectancy is 10% lower than for non-maori and maori are twice as likely to be obese. our suicide rate is 1.6 times higher than non-Maori and our youth suicide rate is twice that of non-Maori.
We need change and I hope that this review will bring it but I am not confident that the review won't be usurped by devious people looking to feather their own nest.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

TPPA is dangerous

This Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is very dangerous for us. Framed in the language of trade, it is a not so stealthy method of taking everything that they haven't taken so far.
Press Release Te Wharepora Hou
Te Wharepora Hou, a group of Maori women based in Auckland, supports civil society groups from Australia and New Zealand that are opposing the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).
Similar free trade agreements have had a devastating impact on the rights & lives of Indigenous peoples around the world. Indigenous peoples have been criminalised and rights to their lands and resource have been ignored.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is colonisation by corporation. Maori and Pacific Island communities have already borne the brunt of neo-liberal economic restructuring in the 80’s and 1990’s.
The TPPA will intensify and increase these negative economic impacts In our communities and as a result are hugely over-represented in all negative indices. The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is part of the neo liberal structural adjustment programme to diminish and extinguish Indigenous rights forever.
The TPP represents a significant and; disruptive challenge to Maori.
As wahine Maori, our long and deeply-held traditional values and understandings of collectivity, of manakitanga , of kaitiakitanga (Caring for Earth Mother), for Tangaroa (god of the sea) and for their children, is in direct opposition to what is being proposed in the TPPA. The New Zealand government does no have the right to negotiate away our Treaty rights and our rights as Indigenous peoples.
The selling off of our mokopuna and their future must stop.
I agree with those statements.

From TPPA Watch
Why should we be concerned about the Trans-Pacific Partnership?
If these negotiations succeed they will create a mega-treaty across nine countries that will put a straightjacket around what policies and laws our governments can adopt for the next century.
Which countries are involved in these negotiations?
As of November 2010 there are nine: in addition to the US and New Zealand, there are Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam.
What could the TPPA affect?
Everything from foreign ownership of land and resources, including mining licenses, media laws and support for local NZ content, Treaty settlements, control of financial speculation, the price of medicines, to compulsory labelling of food, plain packaging of cigarettes, privatisation contracts for water, prison, schools and hospitals under public private partnerships (PPPs) …
How come it is described as a ‘trade’ agreement?
That’s a clever branding exercise. It is really an agreement that guarantees rights to foreign investors that operate out from any of the TPP countries – think entertainment (Warners and Sony), pharmaceuticals (Merck and Pfizer), mining (RTZ and BP), tobacco (Philip Morris), retailers (Wal-Mart and Woolworths), finance sector (Merrill Lynch, Westpac, AIG, Macquarie, JP Morgan), agro-business (Cargill, Monsanto), private water operators (Bechtel, Veolia) and much more.
They want what we have - so they can make money.

Hat tip - Whenua Fenua Enua Vanua

Monday, December 6, 2010

beside you is safe

Hone has made his submission to the select committee considering the new Bill to replace the Foreshore and Seabed Act. I agree with everything he says.

From Stuff
"Even the four members of the Maori Party who are voting for this bill are on record as saying this bill is not what Maori want, and that they expect our children and our grandchildren to continue to fight to make it right.
"Well this is not a legacy I want to leave for my grandchildren. I intend fighting for these rights as hard as I can, for as long as I can, while I'm alive today.
"Our job is to express the will of the Maori people, to defend Maori rights and to advance Maori interests, and to fight with every fibre of our being, against any threat to those rights - outside of Parliament, and inside as well.
"We were not elected to go soft because we go into coalition with anyone. We were not elected to accept the crumbs that fall from another man's table. And we were not elected to meekly accept that which we know to be wrong.
"This bill is wrong, and we were elected to fight against bills like this.''
... So yes, this bill restores the right to go to court, but it's a Clayton's clause, because when Maori get through the door they will simply not have the finance to sustain a long and ugly legal battle that they have little chance of winning. That's not justice, and the Government should be ashamed to say it is.''

Well - IMO it is now time to increase our preparations for the battle, it is time to draw up ranks with hone. In past times now would be the time for a relative to semi-secretly enter the pa and inform the occupants of what was about to happen - so that they could escape.

what's wrong?

What issues would children and young adults say are the problems facing this country? Just remember there is no agenda from them - they aren't political or trying to score points - they are just telling it as they see it - and their insights are valuable. From the children from the country which ranks as second lowest for child safety among 30 developed countries.

From Stuff
In a report commissioned by Save the Children, 199 children nationwide were asked to speak up about what they thought was wrong with their country.
The kids, aged six to 17, identified youth gangs, bullying, child abuse, discrimination against Maori and ethnic minorities, as well as drugs as areas of concern.
"We are human but they treat us as rats," one child spoken to for the report said, referring to racism in the community.
At the root of all of those issues is the exploitation of people by other people. It is the same root cause identifyed here. It is related to incidences like dying while running away from the police and bashing seals heads in. They all stem from the same alienation built into the system. Sticking plasters are not going to work on this stuff - we need to get to the core of the problem - the basic inequity that is there and work from that point up.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

visual poem

I cannot see you,

in the usual places

like stone.

threat recognition

I have just posted this comment up on Maui Street in response to Muzza's latest post on corporate iwi elite - based on Annette Sykes Bruce Jesson lecture. Why would I bother arguing against such a thing as corporate iwi elite when I cannot stand injustice and inequality? Well for one thing the line is too pat, too easy to roll off the tongue - what does it actually mean?

The other main reason is I want to effect change and villifying people won't do that.
I’ve been considering this issue of corporate iwi elite for a while - I’d like to put a counter argument almost as a devils advocate.
Maori as people have all sorts of ideologies – they have evolved as we have and they are valid because at the core they incorporate Te Ao Maori. Do we really believe that Tuku Morgan or Mark Solomon have plans to make themselves billionaires whilst their people starve and suffer. Are the members of the ILG and all of the other ones scum who are betraying themselves and their people? Or is it that they are doing their best under an oppressive capitalist worldview, combined with the monumental effects of colonisation, to gather power and influence for maori. What influence do they actually have? What jet airplanes are they flying around in? Mark Solomon’s pay is in Ngai Tahu’s annual report along with all of the various ways the money is being spent to empower maori. So what is the story? They are victims like all maori because they are maori. They aren’t some powerful elite – they are ex truck drivers and school teachers who have been elevated to positions within their iwi. They didn’t ask the government to set up the corporate iwi structures – they were given them and we have seen the scrutiny they get and the ridicule when mistakes are made. By defining maori via class or some other western construct, we devalue our own heritage and kaupapa. We are maori that is the beginning and end of the story. We use whatever to further the empowerment of maori as we always have done. We use the throwaways they give us and we tunnel away and undermine their paltry agendas and when the dust is settled, maori are empowered.
So I let myself rant on a bit there - aroha mai. Just remember that IMO empowerment of maori, will empower us all and bring us all together - we are all connected on the same waka.

My point around the ranting is that the real enemies for all of us are capitalist, commodification, individualist, selfish and greedy ideologies - they are not maori constructs although some maori follow those false gods with vigour.

I oppose those false gods with vigour.

Friday, December 3, 2010

greed times infinity

The United Nations Climate Change Conference is taking place in Cancun, Mexico and almost everyone considers it a waste of time. When you consider the impacts already being felt around the world it seems that the developed world has said - "too hard", yet it is irrelevant whether we call it too hard or not - the change is here and the effects are going to be in our face from now on - get used to images of human misery and suffering, collapsing ecosystems, extreme weather and extinctions of large and small creatures. This is not alarmist - it is the way it is. Check this article out - 40% of the oceans plank plankton has gone since the 1950's - we cannot even imagine the effects of that within the food chains and ecosystems of the ocean. Some argue we must use the capitalist imperitive of greed to drive change - like r0b at the Standard - I disagree - greed will not fix this, it is not fixable by us. It is time to prepare for some big changes - the world our mokopuna will inherit will be as different as the world we inherited from our grandparents - but not in a good way.

Indigenous peoples are fighting hard to be heard and for good reason - From Mother Earth Journal
Indigenous peoples are on the front lines of the impacts of climate change whether they live on islands or in coastal areas, the Arctic, the deserts, urban areas forests or mountain regions, and their situation is dire.
The Indigenous Caucus  formulated a statement that they presented during the Nov. 29 opening session.
“Market-based mitigation strategies such as the Clean Development Mechanism, and carbon offsets, including forest offsets and REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) further threaten our human rights, including our right to free prior and informed consent among many others. Our land and territories, food sovereignty, bio-diversity, cultural practices and traditional life ways are being placed in further jeopardy, and we reject these false solutions.”
“Our survival is in the balance. Our responsibility to our Peoples, our future generations, our Sacred Mother the Earth and to each other as brothers and sisters of the human family, requires and demands immediate and decisive action.”
When faced with a survival situation we would do most anything to make it - if we recognised the dire nature of the situation that is. The values that will get us through are community, connection and caring.
I wrote a haiku about global warming a while ago
is it winter yet?
i see the sea has risen
my breath does not show

feel free to add your haiku in the comments

Thursday, December 2, 2010

maurakau insights

The Matarua Federation of Traditional Maori Martial Arts is based on maurakau (māori weaponary). IMO like many martial arts the fighting skills of are a manifestation of the fighters internal world and to be a good fighter means to be at peace with the deeper levels of the art and practice and yourself.  The fighting is almost an afterthought. The most impressive aspect that really caught my eye was the idea that when holding the rakau and thinking of tūpuna and what they would do - you are actually creating the connection and living with the past, as the present.

Rotorua Daily Post
"It's not just about fighting or anything like that - it's about the mind, body and soul," Whatanui Flavell said. "Maurakau isn't about winning, it's about whakawhanaungatanga (kinship), it's about bringing people together in a way our tipuna used to do.
"I was a swimmer and played a bit of rugby and touch.
But with maurakau, it's about body position and thinking about how our tipuna (ancestors) used to do it.
"In swimming you're just trying to be a winner.When I'm holding a rakau in a stance and you're ready to go into a fight, I think 'far out, if our tipuna were in this position, what would they do?"
'The sport has a wide range of people taking part in it including non-Maori, Flavell said."It's for anyone. It's not about who you are or where you come from. "It's about passion, if you want to learn about Maori culture this is a way of going about it."
Open to everyone - just like the beaches. A way to learn about māori culture and yourself - a win-win scenario. Think about the vast storehouse of knowledge and technique that was developed over generations.

Strong speech by Tariana

The maori party have felt my anger regarding the repeal of the Foreshore and Seabed Act. I am opposed to the new Bill but the Maori Party and Tariana Turia specifically are still supporting it and still saying it is a movement forward for maori.

The United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the New Zealand Human Rights Commission Asia-Pacific Regional Workshop on the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People has just started and Tariana gave the opening address. It is a very good speech and within it Tariana outlines her view on the Foreshore and Seabed Act repeal and the new Bill. Good discussion is about understanding others point of view, so in that spirit i will reproduce some of Tariana's statements.

From Scoop
Ngati Apa asked whether the Court had jurisdiction to consider whether land in the foreshore and seabed had customary land status. The Court of Appeal upheld the finding of the Maori Land Court that yes, the Court, did indeed, hold that jurisdiction; and Maori had every right to go to Court to seek or protect common law property rights – customary title.
In lightning-quick time the former Government passed the Foreshore and Seabed Bill Act in 2004 which extinguished customary title – meaning no whanau, hapu or iwi could seek customary title.
And then the floodgates opened.
A hikoi of approximately 40-50,000 marched against the legislation outside Parliament. There was national criticism of the legislation by the Waitangi Tribunal who found the policy breached the Treaty of Waitangi and various representatives of the United Nations criticised the Act for its discriminatory effects.
Six years down the Track, we are on a path determined to repeal that 2004 Act, but also to restore the ability for customary title to be recognised.
And so the 2010 Bill explicitly recognises the enduring mana-based relationship of iwi and hapu to the marine and coastal area in their rohe through the automatic award known as mana tuku iho. Maori do not have to prove anything in order to achieve this recognition, it is theirs by right as tangata whenua; people of the land.
But the Bill goes further, to incorporate tikanga as a key element in the test for customary title and allow for differences in tikanga from group to group.
The inclusion of tikanga in the Bill allows a protected customary rights holder to delegate or transfer the rights in accordance with traditional practices. The Bill also explicitly allows for customary practices to evolve over time. Both of these developments recognise and allow for the evolving nature of customary rights.
There are other initiatives in this Bill which set out a new expectation of how indigenous rights can be considered in the statute. One in particular, is around the burden of proof.
The 2004 Act required Maori to prove extinguishment of customary title had not occurred. Proving something had not happened over a 170 year period was a significant burden on Maori. The 2010 Bill places that burden on the Crown. If the Crown cannot prove extinguishment then customary title will be recognised (provided the other elements of the test are met).
I wanted to set out this example in some depth because I think it comes back to that spirit of self-determination.
We wanted to see the shared burden of proof, and the notion of customary jurisprudence embedded within the bill because it is inherently setting out a new way of indigenous interaction with the state, based on principles of justice, democracy, and the promotion and protection of indigenous rights.
This is, however, just one of many legislative and policy challenges which we must apply ourselves to in upholding the aspirations of the Declaration.
I have left that section in, in full because it shows the thinking. There are many excellent passages in Tariana's speech - go and have a read here.

I am not sure about the paragragh above where Tariana says that the crown has to prove extinguishment of customary title - that is not my understanding at all - but perhaps the line - (provided the other elements of the test are met) tells the real story.

cut the line

Awesome submissions from Ngai Tahu and Te Atiawa against the repeal of the Foreshore and Seabed Act. This must be sending a message and a half to the maori party - when you get an iwi confirming that it may become an intergenerational battle - you know this is deadly serious.

From Claire Trevett NZH
Ngai Tahu's submission quotes the iwi's kaiwhakahaere, Mark Solomon, as saying it would be better to leave it to future generations to take up the battle of fixing the injustices caused by the 2004 Act "rather than shouldering the burden of a history that alleges Maori support for a 2011 Act that is equally as unjust".
Te Atiawa rejected the bill saying the tests were "unreasonably high" and if they were not changed, it should not go ahead.

This bill is opposed by most maori - no ifs, buts or maybes - the only thing keeping it going is the maori party. If you have a monster fish on the line and it's dragging you under - you cut the line to live.
Ngai Tahu said the test for title and rights should be based on Maori custom and the intensity of each iwi's relationship with the coastline, rather than on exclusive use and occupation of the coastline.
The submission rejected the argument of the Maori Party co-leaders that while the bill was not perfect, it was all the current political climate allowed and it should be for future generations to try to improve upon it.
The maori party can't spin this, they can only accept or reject it. Cut the line!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

underreported struggles - 44

Many people are working hard doing amazing things to bring people together. Ahni at Intercontinental Cry is one such person. If you haven't checked out his site yet, please do - I highly recommend it.

One of the services that Ahni does it provide a monthly report called "Underreported Struggles". This report covers indigenous peoples around the world fighting mining and deforestation, imprisonment and oppression and much much more. These struggles are our struggles - all of us - from whatever background or ethnicity.

I'm going to highlight this report every month so that we can all be better informed and strengthened personally and collectively.
Police in Argentina shot and killed two Indigenous Tobas, and arrested more than 2 dozen others at a blockade site in the northern province of Formosa.
More than 200 Indigenous organizations and 79 different nationalities came together in La Maria Piendamó, Cauca, Colombia for the First Continental Summit of Indigenous Communication in Abya Yala (the Americas).
A Costa Rican court struck down a mining concession granted to the Canadian company Infinito Gold and ordered the company to pay environmental damages.
Navajo Nation President Joe Shirley, Jr., signed the Northeastern Arizona Water Rights Settlement, finalizing the Tribal Coucils' majority decision to forfeit the Navajo (Dine) Peoples water rights, in effect, for a new water pipeline. Many Dine feel utterly betrayed by the decision, which is geared toward benefiting outside interests.
New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson signed an Executive Order extending greater protection to the sacred Zuni Salt Lake and Sanctuary.

That is only five out of at least 17 stories, and Ahni posts this once a month - that is service to humankind. Each story has lessons for us all because the struggle for fairness, respect and equality are common to us all. We are more alike than different.

360 months to go!!!

This is a very powerful gathering and when they speak, ears should listen - for their own good. I totally agree with their conclusions.

From Indigenous Peoples Issues
A national hui of Maori women, Te Whaainga Wahine have condemned the exclusion of wahine from national, regional, local and Maori political forums.
The hui made specific reference to the Iwi Leaders Group who do not speak for Maori women.
The hui, the first called in thirty years, has challenged Maori leadership that advance the political agenda of the National-ACT-Maori Party Coalition at the expense of whenua, whanau and hapu wellbeing.
The hui affirmed Tino Rangatiratanga by 2040 and implemented a specific plan of action to achieve this.

2040 is only 360 months away! This is the maori world in action - I am so pleased that the truth is being spoken.

Kia ora Ana for the link to the blog Te Whaainga Wahine

informed or not

Well the submissions are still coming in on the repeal of the foreshore and Seabed. Great to see Ngati Tama strongly opposing the new bill.

Radio NZ
Ngati Tama chairman Fred Te Miha says while the bill allows the opportunity for Maori to obtain customary rights, few iwi will be able to prove uninterrupted occupancy.

One of the submissions caught my eye - is it me or is this a bit weird

The Marlborough Express
Karl Maltesen, a Danish immigrant, who lives in Marlborough, told a hearing in Blenheim yesterday that he opposed the new bill because he believed the foreshore and seabed should belong to all New Zealanders.
If the bill went ahead he would contact the United Nations because it would strip New Zealanders of their birthright, he said.
"If the Government believes this will fade out peacefully they are a deluded bunch."
Panel member Kelvin Davis asked Mr Maltesen whether he thought Maori had been disadvantaged and were denied marine space in the past. Mr Maltesen did not want to comment because he was not informed.
Well he finally makes some sense in the end - yes you are very ill-informed. The UN bit is funny but for goodness sake - this is why i think all immigrants should get some free study about the true history of this country and the indigenous place of maori as central to this place, as a prerequisite for building a home here.