Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Victory - today we celebrate

Victory! Greywolf have heard the public outcry and have ditched their exploitation plans for Golden Bay. This is great news

"It is pointless Greywolf putting millions of dollars into the area to find out what is there, if the public are so opposed to it."

But before we all jump up and down too much
"If the company is to reconsider exploration in this area, the New Zealand Government will need to get the people of New Zealand to agree to exploration."
Greywolf's applications were clumsy but they are only the beginning. We will have to fight these exploiters for a while yet and the next application from a mining company will have considered the fate of greywolf.

Yes we celebrate today and walk along the beautiful beaches of Mohua but tomorrow we again set the watch.

bite on this

The latest government initiative to deliver the Welfare Working Groups recommendations shows that we are being subjected to 101 shock doctrine. Michael has a great doco on it here. Felix has a posted a good link to a shorter version here. Please watch and learn about what is actually  happening and why. 

The Prime Minister says the Government will forge ahead with some of the Welfare Working Group's recommendations, aimed at pushing 100,000 beneficiaries into work within a decade.
I have posted about these recommendations  

here(Bennett lobs in some helter skelter)
paula bennett and the government have it all wrong. It is not the beneficiaries fault that there are not enough jobs. If you have to blame - blame the real culprits not the victims. 
and here(Gnats are little pricks)
But let's be clear - this idea is not about accountability, or saving money or creating efficiencies - it is a thinly veiled punch in the face to the less fortunate in our society and it just happens that maori are over represented in those groups.
and here (Kick them while they are down)
When I read this report it makes my skin crawl - it is all just about money and the people are just obstacles. The most vulnerable in society are at risk and maori are highly represented in those groups - this report is an attack upon maori because maori will suffer the most under these recommendations - and that is the way they want it - it suits their purposes.
and here(Scratching in the gutter)
Of course the obvious fact that there are few jobs is ignored because Rebstock dosen't care - it is all the fault of the beneficiaries, they need to get out there and she will provide the pointed stick to get them moving.
 Irishbill has a good post up on The Standard and I'll add other good links as they come through.

I am of the opinion that the brash longdrop into Act and Banks into Epsom shows that the long game is dismantling support for the disadvantaged. They are committed - smiley snake key and all who support him - I'm looking at you maori party.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

we can handle the truth

I like this new Māori parenting program, due to be released on Thursday, by The Office of the Children's Commissioner. It is based upon research which shows that abuse of children was shunned by Māori and arose from Missionaries and colonisation.

Prior to Europeans arriving, children were considered gifts from the gods and whanau shunned child abuse.The researchers suggested abuse arose only after Maori were introduced to corporal punishment in missionary-run classrooms
It is so good to see the myths and slurs on Māori getting dealt to by research. Te Kahui Mana Ririki, the child advocacy group, commissioned the research and Chair Dr Hone Kaa states
"It will serve to demonstrate to Maori they don't have to believe they're inherently violent," he said.
Maori children were taught by Europeans that bad behaviour should be punished by physical violence, he said. This steered away from the traditional idea children were tapu and discipline should be avoided because it tamed the child's spirit.
They researched the treatment of children using oral histories, poems, and European observations and what did they find?
Researchers found children were treated with loving care and indulged. "The father was devotedly fond of his children and they were his pride and delight," the report found. "Children would entwine themselves around their father's neck for an entire day, asleep or awake, as a constant companion." This instilled love, security, and confidence into Maori children.
Lead researcher Margaret Mountain Harte hoped the findings could be introduced in school curriculums to educate Maori teens. "It's empowering for me. The whole warrior culture was balanced by the nurturing one," she said.

Yes we need to take back the ownership of us, we need to keep decolonising our own heads because they have forcefed the myths into us. This isn't a rosy picture of hippie Māori - the reality of the old times are known and people were killed and degraded for all sorts of reasons, including children. But that is irrelevant to the fact that children were the future and that future was protected seriously. Of course there are those who don't buy this and that includes Paul Moon
Maori history professor Paul Moon, of Auckland University of Technology, dismissed the idea abuse began after the Europeans came. "The proposition that missionaries introduced violence, it's one of those allegations that entered the historical bloodstream and once it's in that bloodstream, it's hard to get out. I would want to see evidence."
Hey paul isn't that research and evidence included in the report coming out on Thursday?
Moon said the report's reliance on oral histories and lullabies also raised doubts over its reliability
Oh well, I am sure I saw that the 'great european historical record' has also been researched so hopefully that will allay moons fears. Meanwhile his broken record will keep revolving.

The abuse of children is intolerable and must be sorted. Race or ethnicity has nothing to do with whether a person will abuse a child but poverty does, and stress does. This research can rebalance the lies and disinformation put out to suppress Māori aspirations. This research can be used to reeducate those at risk of abusing, those who do not have the mana and knowledge and are already abusing. This program will make a difference for our children.

Does it work?
Te Kahui Mana Ririki has reported a reduction in child abuse after running workshops based on its findings.
Great initative and some awesome research - thank you.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

i bother because i care

A very insightful article by Chris Barton on Te Ururoa Flavell. I wondered why he can't see the truth in front of his eyes, why he stubbornly supported the lines, why he just dug in and turned his back - the interview illuminates those questions. 

He's frank, determined and clearly prepared to step up when needed. What's not so clear is whether, as in his student days, Flavell is misreading the political upheavals surrounding him.
That seems to sum it up for me - he is misreading the political upheavals surrounding him as he has done in the past and those past misreadings were big ones too - the Springbok Tour, 1975 land march and the 1977-78 Bastion Point occupation. I hope he reads the article and thinks deeply on it - he hopefully will have an epiphany of the real situation today and change his behaviour just as he did in the past.
If he was a slow learner in politics, "when the penny started to drop" Flavell took up the cause of Maori rights with vigour.
I don't blame him for getting it wrong sometimes - hell we all do. But the time for repeating past mistakes and not realising when he has it wrong again, has passed.

Friday, May 27, 2011

same old game

It's a classic really - boscawen of the Act party bleats on about how the new Foreshore and Seabed legislation - the Marine and Coastal Area Act (MaCAA), will allow iwi to gain control over all the coastline and charge boaties etc etc etc, meanwhile Treaty Negotiations Minister finlayson says "it was a very high test" and  "it's a very high threshold to prove customary title, but he believes there are a few iwi which would meet that test."

"Some of my political opponents may well be alleging for electoral purposes that the Government's going to do backroom shoddy deals. I can assure you that is not the case."
It took about year for an iwi to reach an agreement in principle with the Government, he said. It could take another couple of years to reach a deed of settlement.
How few is a few I wonder - not many that is for sure - we know because the deliberately high threshold for customary title was one of the main issues for Māori as the legislation was rammed through by the maori party and national. 

Finlayson gives us a glimpse with this comment, "These are very intensely factual inquiries." Yep - just the facts please - FACTS are the measure and the be all and end all but are 'facts' objective? Don't they also relate to the position of the proponent of those facts? If i draw a six on the ground and you see a nine - what are the facts - that it is a nine or a six? Both? Neither? History is made up of disputed facts.

And in regards to customary title - the facts are that Māori held tino rangatiratanga before the colonisers came and a number of rangatira signed te Tiriti which guaranteed their continued rangatiratanga, meanwhile the powers that be used every dirty trick in the book to steal the land and resources of Māori for themselves and their own profit. Now many Māori are alienated from their tribal lands and ancestors because the governments deliberately ignored their obligations to maori as agreed to in te Tiriti. This alientation results in Māori higher representation in social measurement statistics showing - poorer, less healthy, more imprisoned, dying sooner and so on. 

Those facts will be contrasted with the Crown facts as they attempt to block iwi from their historic lands. Same old same old.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

monochromic ignorance

New Plymouth District Council have decided not to have two Māori wards. They are an embarrasment and a joke because they give lip service to Māori but when it comes to actual progress they waiver and falter. Wikitoria Keenan of the Te Atiawa Iwi Authority says, 
"In a way we are not surprised they did not support the wards because New Plymouth is quite a redneck town. "To a lot of people Maori are invisible and they don't want to give Maori respect for anything."
 The council have decided to permanently fly the tino rangatiratanga flag but Howie Tamati, a Māori councillor, calls it "tokenism". The fallout has started, as relations between the District Concil and tangata whenua break down and we have seen a major hui moved and discussions on whether the iwi komiti will even work with council in the future. 

Local grey power have opposed the wards because, 
"Not only was the plan condescending to Maori, but Maori were able to stand for seats on their own platform and did not need dedicated seats, he said."Maori are free to stand the same as Europeans are free to stand. "If they turn around and say we are allocating two seats for the Maori race what about the Chinese race. What about the Scottish race ... They can get it on their own. Plenty get it on their own," Mr Watts local greypower president said. 
That is the level of ignorance and racism that Māori face every day in this country. Māori want the wards but watts explians that that is condescending to Māori - well thank you so much for your patronising racist attitude - we'll get back to you on that one. And as for the 'races' argument - i can assure watts that it is never too late to gain knowledge, age is not a barrier - educate yourself and your members, become part of the solution not the problem. Try manifesting the wisdom of your years not your ignorance.

The council decision leaves us where we often are - with  Māori being marginalised and disregarded - put to one side for the apparent betterment of the of the majority but the shortsightedness of these people will just create more conflict and less community. Tangata whenua are the people of the land - no ifs, buts or maybes - reject this idea and you reject everything that makes us us.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

murky mining attempt

The company that wants to exploit our beautiful Golden Bay is proving elusive. There are some very strange goings on indeed. Greywolf is a sham.

Nelson Mail
Checks by the Nelson Mail and TV3 have raised numerous questions about the company and its chairman, Edward Lancaster. Former Golden Bay community board chairman Joe Bell, who will chair a public meeting next week on Greywolf's application to explore parts of the region for oil, gas and coal, is trying, so far unsuccessfully, to make contact with the Chinese company named on the Greywolf website as its joint-venture partner. And the iwi group Manawhenua Ki Mohua is seeking clarification on what exactly Mr Lancaster is now proposing to Crown Minerals. Last night TV3 ran an item which described the Australian company as "more of a grey ghost than a grey wolf" and outlined its difficulty in locating the company's offices or getting follow-up comment from Mr Lancaster after an initial interview last week.
Very murky 
The Mail is also finding it difficult to drill down to the facts. Despite what the website says, Mr Lancaster said last week that Greywolf's Chinese mining partner wasn't Qinghua, the company named, but "many companies like Qinghua".Mr Bell said people concerned by the mining application had suspicions about the company's bona fides. "We've received quite a lot of information, which we're trying to have confirmed."
He said the email addresses on the website all "bounced", which was odd, because they were addresses for use by potential investors
This is the company that wants to descecrate our land and seas so they can make money - but who for? Who are they making money for? Themselves obviously, but who are the chinese backers and who are the kiwi backers? 

Meeting in Golden Bay for those opposed to these exploiters
Interest was building in the public meeting, to be held on June 3 in the Golden Bay High School hall.
This exploitation is a dirty business full of dirty companies and greywolf is a prime example. They think we are idiots but they are the fools and they are going down.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

the harder the better

The maori party have a good campaign beginning and i'm not going to knock it (too much) because it is very smart and is designed to attract the voters that they say they want. In their latest panui they describe
The challenges our people face are complex and they were created over the equivalent of 57 parliament terms or about 170 years so fixing them will not happen over night. For every day we have spent in Parliament, since signing an agreement with the Government, we have delivered to our Maori communities $2.67 million worth of benefits (per sitting day) - a milestone no other party in this country's political history has achieved. 
This statement is smart because  it reinforces the line of incremental change that the maori party have consistantly used. It is good to be consistant in the message. Breaking down any achievement into smaller and smaller pieces allows the recipient to create a connection with the claim. $2.67 million of benefits (pretty vague term here) per sitting day sounds like a lot and I'm sure it is, but is that the measure of success? Of course not - it is made up, but still true within its context - framed by the designers of the message - very smart designers.

But for me I'm not worried even slightly, because whatever happens with the election will be the right way forward. I don't have a problem with multiple parties representing  Māori - I want it and encourage it. Concensus works, cooperation works - competitiveness doesn't. The Mana Party will attract those who believe in equality, social justice, kaitiakitanga and tino rangatiratanga and I believe there are lots of people who do believe in those values, from all backgrounds and ethnicities. So go hard maori party, go even harder I say, because these debates are strengthening Māori, making us stronger not weakening us. Go very hard indeed maori party and let's create history and empower and engage Māori.

one step at a time

It has been helpful to take a micro-break from blogging. Of course i did have 4 assignments due, from RMA to te Tiriti, the role of hapū to te reo Māori. Phew!

There has been the budget and for me it is just the budget they give before Don Brash gets the Finance Minister reins and introduces extremely nasty programs that the gnats will be able to distance themselves from, whilst introducing them. The election is the goal everything else is secondary to that, including the latest budget. And the reason the election is so important is because of reports like this one, showing that maori spend two times as long on benefits than others.

The study, tracking 1265 people born in Christchurch in 1977, found that Maori spent an average of 21 months on welfare between the ages of 21 and 30 compared with just 8.5 months for non-Maori.
and what are the causes of this inequality?
The study said the gap could be explained by Maori having more behavioural problems as teenagers, leaving school without qualifications, abusing alcohol, having babies before age 21, and coming from poorer families with mothers who smoked and drank in pregnancy and parents who punished their children too early or neglected them.
What is the underlying cause - because that sounds a little like blaming Māori to me and there certainly seems to be some gross, racially-based generalisations in that statement (i'll go and read the report in case I have got it all wrong). Māori don't punish their children too early or neglect them - of course individuals do and they are from some community, but that line of thinking is too simplistic. Look around the world in places where Māori don't live and you will find the same abuses occuring. There are higher instances of these negative statistics with all colonised peoples and that is where the answer is too - if we want to front up to it.

I've been pleased that Hone has been quiet, just getting on with the job - he is on breakfast TV tomorrow so tune in for some fun.

Monday, May 16, 2011

how many heroes?

I've often wondered about the question - who are your heroes? When I think of people that inspire me and are heroes to me, one name stands high and that is John Minto. I have blogged about him here and the words that Hone has spoken about him are my sentiments exactly.

"In terms of a New Zealander, he is what I call a great New Zealander," Harawira told the Sunday Star-Times.
"He will be formally invited to be a candidate for Mana, first of all on the list.
"I have people talking about me being the leader of the Mana Party. But when I decided to chase Annette Sykes, I knew full well that she is a leader in her own right and in her own world.
"And John Minto is another person like that. People like that don't work around proclaiming their leadership... they are naturally leaders in the field they are involved."
The naysayers don't get it - how can they all be leaders and work together? But, to me it is the way Rangatira have always worked and make no mistake they are leaders and heroes and that is why I have sent my membership into the Mana Party, and like John Minto I have never joined a political party before, but the time for sitting on the fence is over - now is the time to seize the opportunity and create history. 
Harawira said he was "genuinely over the moon" that Minto would consider any offer.
"What he did during the Springbok tour, particularly for us Maori and Pacific Islanders, was impressive," he said.
The Party List for Mana is building and it is heroes 1, 2, 3 for me. Harawira, Sykes, Minto - a dream team for social activists and those who believe in equality and tino rangatiratanga and a nightmare team for the powers that be - they will cut through the bullshit like hot knives through butter. 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

you and I gonna live forever

What can i say - I love Oasis and this song and this version - perfect for clearing the head and heart.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

going to a happy place

Hone said he would resign from parliment and force a by-election and he has. That is integrity and bodes well for the Mana Party. They have the numbers and all the naysayers and poo-pooers are wrong - the support is there. It's time to get off the fence and get involved - here is the membership form - come and be a part of history.

For the record i think Hone will win big in the by-election because he is back to what he does best - talking and connecting with people. He will really shine in this campaign and as he does, his enemies will get more and more desperate - expect some real slime to come out - all to no avail though. Hone represents the people and they know it. 

Labour's Kelvin Davis will come a long way second and whatever his vote, his team will talk it up as some victory - probably because of the close win over the maori party candidate. Yes they will split the opposition to Hone vote and cancel each other out. I would have prefered labour to not stand a candidate for similar reasons to Eddie's excellent post on The Standard

The maori party must be really concerned and they have good reason - they have had so many chances to listen but they stubbornly refuse to conceed, that is now set in play and their fate is sealed.They also have something else very serious for them to consider - their big friend mr key is starting to hit some very soft sand and he has a lot more to get through before the election. Brash will irritate him and ACT will start polling and labour will get some hits in. His thin persona will crack as the brand is eroded piece by piece - we have already seen how vacuous he is in this excerpt from a BBC interview  - watch it and cringe (thanks irishbill and danyl). As things get tougher for mr key he will lose interest in his mates in the maori party - ACT will give him the numbers and the maori party will feel like a liability, a distraction, another irritant. 

Especially as in their desperation to show their independence, they will oppose him, and argue with him and not vote with the right team - after all he's given them - bloody cheek, let them save themselves I've got bigger problems to worry about. Another aspect of key is that he is a short timer - a wheeler dealer - not interested in going for a second term especially if the going gets really tough and his nice guy image takes a bashing - which it will as they introduce more and more pain and suffering for those who need support and protection, those who are disadvantaged in our society. The next leader of the gnats might not be so fussed on the maori party.

Can the left stop the right getting back in - maybe, but not with labour the way it is and not with goff there. Imagine this scenario - 
Hone announces a new political party that will focus on social justice and the disadvantaged in society. Values such as protecting the environment and equality are also there as well as a belief in maori self determination. Labour leader Phil Goff issues a statement welcoming this new political initiative that aligns with his party's beliefs and whilst he recognises that there are differences he fully supports and looks forward to his team working with the Mana Party team to fight the injustices and inequality initiated by the current national coalition government.
 Oh wouldn't that have been great, wouldn't that have shown courage and leadership - goff would have gone up in the polls and peoples estimation but no - we did not see that fictional scenario and that is why I only say maybe. I believe labour are going to get decimated this election and the Mana and the Greens will hold the balance of power and temper the worst excesses of the right coalition. Act will be there with the residue of the maori party and Winston will be nipping at their heels, back in the house.

The by-election is important but not as important as the General Election and the Party Vote - that is where the the power is wrestled. Join Mana and let's get the power back for the people.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

i cannot hide my monster side

How nasty will they get?

"We are a Maori party, they are not a Maori party," Dr Sharples said. "They seem to represent the unions and various other groups ... we're not left, we're not right. we're Maori."

Yesterday, Mrs Turia said Mr Harawira would be an odd choice to represent the interests of the left. "The Greens do that extremely well in Parliament right now, and I can't see how someone who has never represented those interests ever in his lifetime is now going to pick up on those interests and represent them here."
 Get that Hone - sharples and turia say you don't lead a party interested in maori and you have never represented the interests of the Left - oh you are so bad! That is all the maori party have - insults  - because when their record is analysed the truth is there  - they have not listened to their people and they have sold their credibility out for baubles. They have solidified that Māori have lessor rights than others and they HAVE NOT LISTENED TO THE PEOPLE as they promised to do.

Notwithstanding that let's see what they can do and how low they can go - Mana will sort it out.

Monday, May 9, 2011

clash of cultures

The maori party have said that they will stand a candidate against Hone if a by-election is called. Good! As McCarten said on the radio - if they want to call Hone's bluff then go for it and we will hear what the people want. Exactly! - let's hear from the people because I don't put much weight in these polls saying that labour will come through the gap as the two main protaganists fight it out. Labour won't come through the gaps because their won't be a gap. The hui that the maori party have had over the weekend were fiesty with Hone's mum and sister distrupting by chanting and singing and insulting. I just don't know if that is tika or not - hopefully someone will blog on that aspect somewhere because tariana calls it psychological abuse and it sickened her. The maori party have to rebuild their base up north from scratch and that will take a lot of mahi. Their president says they are after the older voters not the young who are following Hone - perhaps the maori party should really consider deeply why that is. Turia says Hone is scared and that is why he sent his whanau to disrupt the hui but I would imagine Hone didn't send send them at all - they made their own choices and decisions. The maori party will have to get used to people being pretty pissed off with them because they will be hearing a bit of it this year.

Friday, May 6, 2011

leave them be

I can fully understand why Wellington wants a new motorway as I lived there for many years. For me the building of motorways is really a last gasp of a oil addicted society and unfortunately when the oil runs out or becomes too scarce, well then we will have spent a lot of money for roads that not many can afford to use. So i'd look at alternatives to motorways which really means looking at alternatives to personal cars and that is a big one. cars have become more than vehicles, they reflect a lot of us, we feel safe within them, it is our space and it will take a lot of pain for people to give that up. The silly thing is that as there are positives to having your own car, there are also a lot of negatives and the same is true for shared transport, whether that be car-pooling buses or trains. It is pleasant to sit with the same people every day, to chat eventually to them, to smile and say hello. The fanatical attraction we have for our own personal transport seems to me to be a reaction to feeling disempowered within our society.

The motorway option chosen near Wellington goes through sacred Maori Land - an urupa. And tangata whenua are rightly disappointed that the route will disturb their land.

The Dominion Post
Takamore Trustees, which oversees the urupa, met agency representatives last month and refused to endorse new adjustments to the routes near the urupa.
Spokesman Ben Ngaia said yesterday that the trustees were waiting to see the detailed maps, but it was "an understatement" to say they were disappointed the western route seemed to have been chosen.
"Out of the two options, the one that we preferred was the eastern because of the level of impact it left on the waahi tapu."
Our sacred places are too important to develop them, we should respect them and when we do that we respect ourselves and our connection to this land.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

what's the point?

Oh deary dear I don't have any problems with Hone's view of bin Laden, that is his opinion but as I have outlined here, there is a time and place. My question to Hone is, what's the point? What's the point of saying what you did - to show support for bin Laden's family or those that support his philosophy or to be staunch - I can't quite work it out because the days of just saying what you want, when you want, are over - you are leading a new political force that is creating hope for many. You need to suck it up and mull it over before you say whatever you want to say. It is not about bin Laden or whether it was on a te reo maori channel, it is about the bigger picture - it's about Mana!

Footnote - whilst I stick by the post mel on Maui Street has added a comment which really made me think
Mel said... What Hone actually did was a mihi to the dead, which is a Maori custom "...ahakoa ko wai te tangata" despite who the person is. Those are the things you say whenever you hear of someone's passing. That is the tikanga.
If you listen to the video, Scotty Morrison is the one who mentions Osama being a freedom fighter ("engari he tangata tino whaiwhai mo te tino rangatiratanga o tona iwi nera? me ona whakapono") and Hone acknowledges that. But he's not saying 'oh yay he was a choice dude' but points out that he was a human being who had a family/tribe/people that will mourn him...
"no reira, he tikanga kia kaua e takahi i te mate engari me mihi atu ki a ia mo nga mahi e whai nei i a ia i te waiora"
'therefore, the custom is don't trample on the dead, but instead celebrate the good things he did'
Please please watch the article in question and read the subtitles before you go spouting the same tripe as mainstream media.
They have deliberately twisted Hone's reo me ona tikanga into saying something he wasn't.
It is a willful misuse of te reo and a twisting of our tikanga
Thanks Mel you have added good knowledge into the debate. I note also that Hone has apologised - fair enough - i'm sorry too for not getting the full story.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

get out of the way

Oh dear - Russel Norman co-leader of the Greens has decided he hasn't had enough media attention recently so he has to have his say about the Mana Party. What an idiot comment from him that he doesn't want to fight the battles of the 1980's and 1990's - hey russel we are still in those battles - just because you have been having a rest doesn't mean everyone else has been. Of course he has been reading the papers and is getting worried about the Green vote - my question is, "Why are the Greens not fulfilling their potential here, why haven't they captured the public imagination as everyone watches the environment struggle - Why? How about looking at Norman and his leadership and the trend towards the middle class vote - the suit vote. Your strategy is wrong norman and the small support you have shows that - stop being an impediment to the green vote and start thinking like a socially aware green.

Dr Norman said "there might be a few votes" for the new party, but "maybe not a lot". "I mean, who wants to relive the battles of the 1980s and 1990s? We're in 2011 for God's sake. We need a progressive force that actually deals with where we are now, not tries to refight the 1980s and 1990s.
"I just don't think a lot of people are really hanging out for a Hone Harawira, Sue Bradford, John Minto, Annette Sykes kind of party ... They're looking for something progressive and forward-looking that actually is oriented to the current century rather than the last one."
I rather hang with them that you russel - they have conviction and strength of purpose. You have deliberately put yourself in the key/goff camp of politics norman, well done for you. My advice - if you are not part of the solution you are part of the problem. If you don't like the will of the people who may vote for Mana, then piss off - we don't need or want you in the way.

Good post and hat tip - The Standard

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

polluting paradise

Terrible news that they want to explore for oil off Abel Tasman National Park coastline, Golden Bay and Northwest Nelson. This is the most pristine area of this country with beautiful landscapes and undisturbed nature. They cannot be allowed to do this - simply it must be and will be stopped.

Nelson Mail
A Chinese-backed Australian mining company has revealed plans to explore for oil in the seabed off the Abel Tasman National Park coastline, across much of Golden Bay and the northwest corner of the South Island.
Speaking from Sydney, Greywolf chief executive Edward Lancaster said the company hoped to start explorations and eventual mining operations once approval was granted from Crown Minerals – and if its Chinese partners considered it worthwhile.
Mr Lancaster plans to visit the region within the next month to assess the potential for developing the area. Golden Bay was potentially a mineral-rich area and if coal and oil were found, Port Tarakohe could be developed to service those industries, he said.
Company representatives have already spoken to Tasman District Council chief executive officer Paul Wylie about their plans, including the possible development of Port Tarakohe.
"The job prospects for the region would be very good and I know he [Mr Wylie] is anxious to develop the area," he said.
Local tangata whenua are incensed
Golden Bay iwi are alarmed at the plans by Sydney-based Greywolf Goldmining NL. It is proposing drilling the seabed for oil and gas, as well as prospecting for coal in Golden Bay and developing Port Tarakohe.
Manawhenua Ki Mohua, comprising three Golden Bay iwi (Ngati Tama, Te Ati Awa and Ngati Rarua), received the company's petroleum application from the Crown Minerals department last week.
Their representative, John Ward-Holmes, said iwi were "totally opposed to any exploration or drilling of the seabed for oil on cultural and environmental grounds".
"Everyone is alarmed about it. We don't want this and we want to let people know what's in the pipeline."
He said iwi had not been informed about the company's applications to prospect for coal.
We must support Manawhenua Ki Mohua and oppose these exploiters. People power can and will stop them - we will stop them.

the old one two

We are fighting their oil exploitation on the East Coast and we will soon be fighting them on the West Coast too. News that, "US independent energy giant Anadarko Petroleum has confirmed it intends drilling a well in what is known as the Deepwater Taranaki Basin", is disturbing, already there is disquiet

Taranaki Daily News
But already environmental groups fighting oil and gas exploration in remote areas of New Zealand's exclusive economic zone are promising they will take action against the drilling project.
Recently-formed Climate Justice Taranaki confirmed yesterday it has been talking with Greenpeace about what can be done. Spokeswoman Emily Bailey said definite plans had not been formulated, but there would be protest action.
"It's crazy. It'll be mad trying to drill way out there in the Tasman. The risk of spills will be too much," she said.
"So we'll definitely be doing something. We'll also be trying to talk to the community about this project. It's definitely not the way we should be going."
It will be worth keeping our eye on these developments - action is always best if it can be coordinated and getting tangata whenua involved and the community will be essential.
Seismic surveys conducted in the block three years ago identified three major prospects: Romney, which is under 1600 metres of water, Coopworth at 1400 metres, and Corriedale, at a much shallower 230 metres. Depending on which prospect is to be targeted by the exploration joint venture headed by Anadarko, the well could be located more than 150km out to sea.
The Deepwater Horizon disaster occurred in a water depth of 1500 metres. The Taranaki well could be drilled in water at least that deep.
The risks cannot be mitigated they can only be ignored by the exploiters. Why should our land and sea be put at risk to generate profits for overseas megacompanies. it is just not good enough and must be stopped.

Monday, May 2, 2011

underreported struggles 49

Ahni at Intercontinental Cry has some very important underreported struggles this month.
The Alberta government approved a $2.7-billion expansion of the Christina Lake oilsands project, putting even more pressure on the Beaver Lake Cree Nation, their environment, their traditional way of life; and the nearly-extinct woodland Caribou. The Beaver Lake Cree are in the midst of an ongoing legal battle against all tar sands operations within their territory.
The South Dakota Board of Minerals and Environment delayed its decision on whether or not to allow oil drilling near the Sacred site known as Bear Butte. The board previously approved a drilling application; but then reopened the case after determining that it had failed to consider state laws concerning the protection of cultural resources related to property with an historic designation. The Board is expected to make its decision on May 18. Bear Butte is sacred to many Plains Peoples, including the Lakota, Cheyenne, Dakota, and Arapaho.
The Mirarr People renewed their opposition to the multibillion-dollar Jabiluka uranium deposit in Australia's Northern territory, declaring their wish, in solidarity with the people of Japan, to include the deposit as part of the UNESCO world heritage-listed Kakadu National Park. Simply put, the Mirarr want the uranium to stay in the ground, where it can't harm anyone, and so future generations have it to protect.
Bolivia is getting ready to ratify one of the most radical environmental bills in global history, The Law of Mother Earth. The law, which has also been tabled at the United Nations, would give the natural world legal rights, specifically the rights to life and regeneration, biodiversity, water, clean air, balance, and restoration.
The Swedish Supreme Court upheld a decision from the country's lower courts, recognizing the rights of the Sami indigenous people and their ancestral tradition of herding Reindeer. The case had been sitting before the courts since 1997, when 104 Swedish landowners tried to sue three reindeer herding collectives owned by the Sami in the area.
 And many more - please visit Intercontinental Cry and read about these struggles.

the worse he calls it the better it is

It is generally acknowledged now that the labour leader phil goff has poor political radar or nous or as Idiot/Savant puts it, "Phil Goff has no virtù." I am sure goff disagrees but it is pretty obvious after the continued and consistent mistakes he has made, anyway we should consider carefully what Phil says because the opposite is likely to be true. Phil is saying this

He doubted Mr Harawira's party would have as much of an impact as Mr Harawira believed. "Will [Maori voters] go for an extreme option - Hone Harawira and the people he's got around him? "It's not my impression Maori will go for an extreme option."
Extreme - that is the joke of it all - policies that pander to a mythical middle, based on the latest polling, that play lip service to the disadvantaged are extreme not the Mana Party's kaupapa. That is a wonderful endorsement from goff really - the worse he calls it, the better it is.

Meanwhile Brash has taken offence at being called racist by Hone
"I find that grossly offensive. I think being called racist is almost the worst kind of insult," Dr Brash said. "To me a racist is someone who wants to discriminate against particular people. Well, my concern is that the Maori Party actually wants to create a privileged group of New Zealanders.

The Mana Party Don, not the maori party
I want all New Zealanders to have exactly the same rights under the law. He [Hone] wants to give a preference to Maori."

We are going to hear that one quite a bit. It dismisses the indigenous rights of maori, it ignores the Treaty of Waitangi, it disappears the statistics around maori which shows the truth not the 'privilege' and it is based on self interest, cowardness and racism. There are no 'same rights' Don - didn't you check out the latest replacement to the foreshore and seabed act? No equality there - the rights of maori are lessor than private owners. But this battle is not over facts but rather over ideologies and the cycloptic brash knows it all already.

what have we got

The maori party have said that Hone has broken his agreement, which was for him to stand as an independent, and they have called the truce off, but will stand a candidate against Hone in the by-election? They are having a hui on it. No doubt they have someone ready to go but it was interesting to hear Pem Bird say he was shocked about the by-election - that seems a bit weird.

So what have we got.

The Greens are good and can get into their campaigning - hopefully with a few joint statements with the Mana Party on key issues.

Winston will continue to gain support and he may go for the race card if he feels desperate.

National have Brash to worry about and Winston to some extent - sure they have a fondness for the maori party but how far that goes depends on the polls and probably the RWC. I would like to see them stand a candidate against Hone.

Labour have big issues and I think they are stuffed. As other partys get support i expect goff to trot out some 'race' issues - you know like how maori are privileged and not like real kiwis. It doesn't matter if they stand a candidate because I think their party vote from maori is going to dive big time. They have been living on borrowed time and the generous nature of Māori but that has changed and the bullshit won't work anymore not when the truth is there in all its horrible glory. The Foreshore and Seabed debarcle is not forgotten. But it's funny how the Gods work because now we have two maori parties, a wonderful unintended consequence.

The maori party are now fighting for their political lives and they will fight and that is sad because who are they fighting against? They should stick to their non-aggression agreement but their pride won't let them. Make no mistake it is all very personal now. Could they take the seat from Hone? Anything can happen but i cannot see it - it is all over for the maori party but they don't recognise that. However, I wouldn't have a problem if they kept a couple of seats. Over the next wee while it will be good for them to be there giving Brash some stick but then again, i am sure I heard Pita Sharples say he wouldn't have an issue going into coalition with Brash, so the only stick given will be one to bash maori with.

Brash is bad and he will use the race card at will and the really sad and sick thing is that he will get support from numbers of people who live in this country. Yes some of our fellow citizens really believe that Māori are lessor than them and they will be coming out of their holes to back Brash. Māori are about to recieve a severe thrashing from Brash as he builds his bought party. Luckily Mana and the Greens are there and labour and Winston to some small extent. Even the maori party will get their chance to walk their talk. It will get nasty, these guys have money and are not happy - they aren't making enough money and something has got to be done about that.

The battlefields will be the rights of Māori, the environment and their exploitation of it, and the continued suffering of people disadvantaged within our system. The economy is always there because that is their reason and excuse for everything.

I am optimistic because Brash will alienate people. He will suck a few from the gnats and he will battle with Winston for others. Key's image will gradually erode as more people see how shallow he really is. Goff will continue to act concerned. The maori party will become irrelevant. The Greens will grow and Mana will too. I am optimistic that people will see that an alternative is now available and they will support Mana.