Why has overt anti-Semitism surfaced?

Questions are being asked about the higher level of billboard attacks, especially the use of anti-Semitic and Nazi symbolism, and whether it’s related to what’s happening in Gaza.

‘Deep Red’ at Public Address:

So why has overt anti-Semitism only surfaced in the 2014 election, and not the 2011 one? I suspect it’s because what’s happening in Gaza, as well as elections in general, are even more closely tied to social media than they were even only a couple of years ago.

 

BillboardJewNazi

I don’t see it as related to what’s happening in Gaza much if at all.

One significant difference in this election is a new party combination that is campaigning on being disruptive with a primary aim of taking down Key and National.I haven’t seen any evidence this party is involved in organised billboard defacement, but two things it is doing may have at least contributed to a significant increase in damage.
– deliberately provoking and using a higher level of political hate
– activating a new breed of party supporter

Old party activists (Labour and National) may dabble in billboard attacks but will know from experience what a costly and time consuming pain checking and repairing damage is so are likely to avoid all out graffiti war.

Greens were embarrassed last campaign when caught doing a nationwide hit job on National billboards so will either have warning off their activists or will be doing it more carefully. Some Greens were caught defacing billboards in Dunedin a couple of weeks ago (“casual fascists”) but I think the party leaders and campaign team would be horrified if any maverick activists were found to be involved in Jewish and Nazi attacks.

So what’s new this campaign?

The Internet Party obviously, targeting new demographics of the young, disaffected and angry. And they have teamed up with Mana giving a small radical party much more coverage – but the socialist core of Mana are old school union activists who should be aware of the disgrace and dangers of indulging in the more extreme attacks that are evident.

The introduction of Nazi and Jewish symbolism in attacks is a very bad look, and may be counter-productive for parties on left regardless of whether they are directly involved or not.

BillboardJew

Have the visionary or the leader of the new party made any statements disassociating themselves from any of this?

Related to this they have disassociated themselves from one chanting video but promoted and defended another which was an odd contradiction. Were they disassociating themselves from responsibility for the content of the second video or just the distribution of it?

They have a potential problem in that having promoted and owned anti-Key rhetoric and actions they may now be perceived as associated with the actions of people who are independent of the party organisation.

Whether they deserve it or not they may reap what revolutionary behaviour and discontent they sow.

Key ‘lying’ versus Mana accusations

Internet and Mana campaigners are shitting in the campaign nest, then crying foul.

There’s an interesting comparison of posts at The Daily Blog. In one Martyn Bradbury blasts John Key for ‘lying’

What’s worse than Key lying about Internet MANA effigy burning on Breakfast TV?

The shrill scream of the right at trying to paint Internet MANA as some sort of fascist movement would be laughable if it wasn’t actually being promoted by the mainstream media.

No attempt is made to substantiate the accusation  the John Key lied about anything, although Laila Harre has also promoted the lie claim.

“The Prime Minister cast a slur and told a lie on your programme yesterday,” she said.

“You presented that video to the Prime Minister and you knew from your research, or should have known from your research, that it had no relationship with the internet Party.”

The effigy-burning video appears to have been first posted on a Facebook page called National Party Billboard Makeovers, which features pictures of defaced National Party hoardings.

TVNZ aren’t apologising.

However, although a TVNZ spokeswoman confirmed last night that a complaint had been received from Internet-Mana, “we’re not making an apology”.

Mr Christie had not suggested any connection between Internet-Mana and the video, she said.

“It was the PM who made this association”.

And neither is John Key but he has explained further.

Mr Key later said he was “not in the slightest” worried about the threat of legal action over his comments.

Asked whether he thought Mr Dotcom was behind the effigy-burning video, Mr Key said: “I don’t honestly know. That was the way it was indicated.

“My broader comments were really around the one that internet-Mana put up on their site that they actively encouraged people to watch, and look, in the end New Zealanders will judge whether that’s all positive.”

Harre’s Internet Party left itself wide open to being connected to less savoury campaign tactics after it promoted an abusive video featuring Kim Dotcom with a chanting crowd – a video that Harre defended.

Now she is complaining that an association is made with another video showing similar chants.

Immediately below the ‘lying’ post at The Daily Blog is a featured guest post by Mana Party candidate Joe Trinder:

GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – National still destroying billboards? 

This post makes no attempt to back up the headline accusation.

DailyBlog hypocrisy

 

The Daily Blog is strongly promoting the Mana Party, the Internet Party and Internet Mana, led by Martyn Bradbury.

Both Bradbury and Harre seem to be so wound up in campaign attack mode they fail to see their double standards and hypocrisy.

Internet and Mana are dishing it out but taking offence when it’s thrown back at them. They’re reaping what they are sowing, and crying foul when they are the substantialy behind the fould wind to blow over this election campaign.

Small party priorities post election

Small party (and Green) leaders were asked in a The Nation debate what their priority policy would be in post election negotiations.

Summary:

  • United Future: Flexi-Super
  • Maori Party: Whanau Ora
  • Mana Party: the elimination of child poverty within the first five years
  • Act Party: economic growth
  • Conservative Party: binding referenda
  • NZ First: non-committal
  • Green Party: expect to have a very comprehensive coalition agreement that meets a whole range of objectives

    Details:

United Future

Right, I wanna talk about relationships in MMP, and I’m coming to Mr Dunne. I want to know that if you get into a confidence-in-supply agreement with the next government, what would be the one thing you would be pushing for in return?

Dunne: I think probably top of our list would be to make progress on our flexi-super proposal, which would see people being able to take a reduced rate of super from the earlier age of 60 or an enhanced rate if they deferred to 70, and with the standard age remaining 65. I think that would be the one thing we’d wanna push most strongly.

That’s a repeat of last election.Dunne negotiated a discussion paper on Flexi-Super with National after the 2011 election and that which was released last year but National are luke-warm on doing anything on it

UnitedFuture’s plan which would allow people to take a reduced rate of New Zealand superannuation from the age of 60, or an enhanced rate if they deferred uptake until 70. The rationale was to give people more choice over retirement income and to recognise that for some people 60 was the age to leave the paid workforce, but that they were currently unable to do so for financial reasons.

Māori Party

Te Ururoa, you say that you could go with either Labour or National, so what would be your top priority as a policy to get?

Flavell: …the major platform that the Maori party has always been on about is final order. We say that if we’re able to consolidate, not only just social—the MSD-

So you would be pushing that if you were with the next government, you’d be pushing to keep–?

Flavell: It’s an absolute must from our perspective that final order will be at the centre of our platform, our policy. It is right now, and it will be.

‘Final order’ is a mistake in the transcript, it should read ‘Whānau Ora’ which is the Māori Party’s flagship policy.

Whānau-ora: restoring the essence of who we are; putting the vibrant traditions from our people at the heart of our whānau

Whānau Ora begins with you. Whānau is the heart of our people, it is the foundation on which our country thrives. It is about reaffirming a sense of self-belief.

Mana Party

All right. Mr Harawira, Mr Cunliffe says that you’re not gonna be part of his government. But you say he’ll pick up the phone if he needs you. So if he rings and says, ‘Hone, I’m offering you confidence in supply, that’s it, no ministers’, what do you want from him?

Do you think he has the vision to lead this country?

Harawira: What I know is this – if the polls keep trending the way that John Armstrong of the NZ Herald says and hit 5% even before the campaign starts for Internet Mana, I’m guaranteed to get a call on the night of September the 20th. And if he asks us, is there one policy, if there’s one thing that we would want to see changed, it would be this – the elimination of child poverty within the first five years.

The ‘elimination of child poverty’ seems idealistic, especially when it is usually a statistical figure based on families below the median income and on that basis there will always be some ‘in poverty’ – below the arbitrary line.

I can’t find a reference to the five year target on the Mana website but they have a range of policy points addressing “economic justice’, for example:

Work towards implementing a Universal Basic Income where everyone in Aotearoa aged 18 and over would receive a minimum, liveable, tax free income after which progressive tax would kick in. This would eliminate the huge costs involved in administering the current shame and blame WINZ system, and do much to end poverty and address growing inequality.

Act Party

Jamie Whyte, if you had a confidence and supply agreement, what would you be after as your top priority policy?

Whyte: Well, almost all problems, practical problems, are remedied by becoming wealthier. And so economic growth is by far our priority. And so the policies that we’ve been promoting on – cutting taxes and reducing the regulatory burden, which would promote economic growth, those would be our priorities in a negotiation with the National party.

That’s straightforward.

Short to medium term goals should include reducing the level of government expenditure below 28 per cent of GDP and lowering the top tax rate to 24 cents.  ACT’s Regulatory Responsibility Bill should be passed.

Conservative Party

Mr Craig, your policies are almost the same as NZ First. You’re the doppelganger in this room, so why would people vote for you when we’ve got the real thing right here.

What would be your top policy that you’d be after?

Craig: We’ve said publicly that we think governments should not be able to ignore overwhelming vote in referenda. The anti-smacking law, tough on law and order, reducing the MPs, all right quite rightly should have been implemented by government, because there is a point at which people need to know they control this nation. It’s their country.

Craig has already stated a bottom line on binding referenda.

ON OUR WATCH REFERENDUMS WILL BE BINDING

At the heart of the democratic system is the principle of the citizens initiated referendum. It’s when a single issue is thought to be so important, all voters are asked to make their opinion heard.

No specifics are given on exactly what this would entail, Conservative ‘Issues’ or policies are brief and vague.

New Zealand First

Mr Peters, your bottom lines or things that you really don’t wanna budge on are no foreign land sales, no race-based parties, buy-back assets and keep the super age at 65. You’re gonna be on the cross-benches, aren’t you, with that list?

Peters talked about a range of policies but was typically evasive and vague.

Peters: Your assumption is that at six weeks out from the election, we’re gonna make decisions now and tell the public, ‘Forget about you, doesn’t matter what happens in six weeks’. Behind close room deals. Now, I’m gonna leave it to the public to decide who’s gonna be standing there at the election, and it won’t include some parties standing here right now.

Many alluded to but no bottom lines revealed before the election.

Green Party

All right, let’s go to Metiria Turei there. (asked about working with NZ First)

Turei: The Green party in government will be a very large part of that government, and we will have significant influence. We will expect to have a very comprehensive coalition agreement that meets a whole range of objectives – a cleaner environment, a fairer society and a smarter economy. And we will have—we won’t settle like other parties might for a single achievement. We want to see our whole plan, our whole agenda being rolled out.

Turei wasn’t asked specifically about a priority but her answer was more befitting of a medium sized party with potentially a significant influence in a coalition.

Greens are excluded from major party debates despite the chances of them getting half the votes of Labour, and they could be a quarter to a third of a left wing coalition so could reasonably expect to include a number of their key policies in negotiations.

Source: TV3 The Nation – Debate: Multi-party election campaign debate

Dotcom bombs could blow up Labour’s chances

While Laila Harré defends Internet Party video the ongoing prominent involvement of Kim Dotcom in promoting his party must make her job as party leader challenging at times – challenging to accept and defend some of what Dotcom and the Party does at meetings and on social media, and challenging to Harré’s principles.

This must also pose additional challenges for Hone Harawira and the Mana Movement. Harawira has closely associated himself with Dotcom.

How will Dotcom’s social media bombs go down in Harawira’s Te Tai Tokerau and Mana’s wider constituencies? Perhaps they will be grateful that Internet coverage isn’t as good yet as they would like it to be. But the Dotcom impressions are also hitting television screens.

And it’s likely the Dotcom imagery will be used to campaign against Internet-Mana, accentuating the stark contrast between Dotcom and Mana.

Labour will probably not be welcoming this attention either. David Cunliffe has been gradually putting more distance between Labour and Dotcom, to the consternation of the left of the left who are demanding Labour joins forces to depose Key and National from government.

Moderate voters who may consider voting for Labour may have significant concerns about the potential influence of Internet-Mana in possible coalition support.

The ongoing Dotcom circus is likely to discourage potential Labour voters from fronting up at the ballot box and may move some votes further to the right.

Dotcom makes his main aims clear:

Are you ready for a revolution?

Are you ready to take down the Government?

Are you ready to extradite John Key?

His controversial and confrontational approach may win the support of some rebellious young people, if they can be encouraged enough to actually vote as opposed to attending a musical event.

But Dotcom’s bombs could backfire. He could blow up Labour and Green chances of election success.

Davis raises hackles over Te Tai Tokerau

Kelvin Davis continues to try and wage a vigorous campaign in Te Tai Tokerau against Hone Harawira and Kim Dotcom, despite apparent Labour Party attempts to tone him down. 3 News reported last night Labour MP told off for anti-Internet Mana website

Emails leaked to 3 News reveal plans by Kelvin Davis’ campaign team for an online smear campaign against Internet Mana, until the party shut it down.

In Te Tai Tokerau there are a lot of billboards, but they are not for Mr Davis. His campaign team has been pushing for the new website instead – part of an anti-Internet Mana smear campaign.

According to emails leaked to 3 News, Mr Davis’ team doesn’t see Prime Minister John Key and National as the enemy. It says its fight is against Mr Harawira.

Who leaked the emails? They must have come from someone within Labour, either in protest against Davis’ campaign methods – or to attract media attention.

His team’s edgy web campaign was shut down by the Labour Party. It thought it was too negative for its “vote positive” campaign slogan – a cartoon of Kim Dotcom was deemed too offensive.

“It wasn’t really offensive; it was edgy,” says Mr Davis.

Emails show the divisions within Labour about whether to work with Internet Mana or fight them. The hierarchy clearly wants to play nice, but the tension between the two parties goes beyond Te Tai Tokerau – it’s nationwide.

It’s normal to attack an opponent and highlight potential negatives for them in an election. Labour have been doing this against National and John Key despite their ‘Vote Positive’ slogan.

Harawira was given a response:

“I’m gutted by how low they would stoop to do this,” says Mr Harawira. “He’s got to take responsibility and either admit it and resign or dump this campaign.”

“The whole thing is set up for Labour to solicit money from National to come after me,” says Mr Harawira. “That’s ugly.”

It’s ironic he describes it as ‘ugly’ considering his coalition with Kim Dotcom and acceptance of a rich man’s substantial funding, which has raised many eyebrows as an inappropriate liaison.

Te Tai Tokerau could be a pivotal electorate this election as it could be the difference between success and failure for the Mana Party and the making or breaking of Dotcom’s Internet Party.

Davis’ parliamentary future may also rest on the electorate as hi has a precarious list position. Taking a vigorous fight to Harawira and Mana will get a lot of support but there have been questions about Labour preferring to allow Internet Mana to win to assist a Labour coalition.

One thing’s for sure – there will be a lot of attention on the ongoing campaign in Te Tai Tokerau.

Mana manouvres

Ex Mana Party candidate Clinton Dearlove announced he would stand in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate as an Independent, which would put him up against Hone Harawira – see Three MPs for Te Tai Tokerau?

He has now claimed that Mana have asked him to stand for Mana in a different electorate. He says he declined.

Details from his Facebook page.

Dearlove Declines Mana Party Request

Over the weekend Mr Dearlove declined a request to stand as a Mana candidate in the Tamaki Makaurau electorate by current Mana members.

“It had been a privilege to have had an opportunity to have stood for the Mana Party previously”.

“We firmly believe in the concept of MANA for ALL and carry that belief with us into the future. We honestly believe that politics is about people, we encourage the Mana Party to carry on its work to highlight the issues affecting our Whanau and Hapu”.

“There are numerous issues that are important, we believe there a number of different paths to achieve improved results for our Whanau and Hapu here in Te Tai Tokerau. We parted ways but we are travelling to the same destination, the empowerment of our Whanau and Hapu aspirations”.

There is a MANAinternet roadshow due to start this week. Mr Dearlove encourages Whanau and Hapu to join him at the roadshow to learn more.

“The Whanau and Hapu do not really know much about Laila or Mr Dotcom”.

However

“We are committed to our Vote Dearlove Get 3 campaign here in Te Tai Tokerau. We look forward to joining Hone and Kelvin in Parliament working for our Whanau and Hapu”.

Together building healthy communities – Tu Kotahi Tatou

Dearlove stood for Mana in Te Tai Tonga in 2011.

Mana’s Manukau/Auckland candidates

The Mana Party have announced ten candidates for Tamaki (Auckland) electorates. None are rated a chance to win electorates but will use them to campaign for the party vote.

Joe Carolan – Mt Albert

Unite Union Staff – Joe is the Team Leader for Auckland based Organisers with direct responsibilities Cinemas and Central Auckland Fast Food restaurants.

Guest The Daily Blog post – Joe Carolan – I’m all for left wing unity, but not when the other guys are trying to kill you
Senior Organiser with Unite Union, writer for http://www.socialistaotearoa.org, Mana founding member

@SolidarityJoe
Irish socialist living in Aotearoa.

Socialist Aotearoa

Yvonne Dainty – Manurewa

Independent candidate for Auckland Council – Maungakiekie-Tamaki Local Board – Tamaki Subdivision

Everyone has a basic human right to live where they choose to make and be part of community as a family. To thrive and prosper under fair and due process and the right to Consultation, Accountability and Transparency.

State Housing is not a privilege it is a right. Social and Economic cleansing is not Social Equality.

Born in Tamaki attended local schools. Represented Auckland Hockey Teams and Waka Ama, and still an active member in the community.

I have written policy in 2009 for Health and Housing.

Community in Unity are families made up of Social Equality without prejudice.

Facebook

Dr Sitaleki Finau – Maungakiekie

Sitaleki ‘Ata’ata Finau was born in Masilamea, Tonga. He attended several primary schools at Te’ekiu, Nukunuku, Nuku’alofa and Toloa. He entered Tonga High School in 1961, and Auckland Grammar School in 1967. He later attended the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia, graduating in 1975 from the School of Medicine, and in1981 graduated from the University of Otago, New Zealand with a Postgraduate Diploma of Community Health
. Since 1994, he has been a registered public health specialist in New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific.

He had since worked as: Assistant Professor for the University of Hawaii in Pohnpei; the Manager of Community Health Service for South Pacific Commission; Senior District Medical Officer and Public Health Specialist with the Remote Health Services and the Royal Australian Flying Doctors in Alice Spring, Central Australia; senior lecturer at the University of Auckland Medical school; and the Professor of Public Health at Fiji School of Medicine, Fiji in 2001 t0 2006. In June 2006 Professor Sitaleki became the Director of the Pasifika at Massey Strategy to put Pacificans in Massey University and Massey in and among the Pacific populations.Sitaleki is also interested in tennis, rugby, people, and food. He dabbles in writing of poetry and short stories mainly for his three children. He is passionate about all matters Pacific and cultural democracy.

Facebook

Roger Fowler – Papakura

Candidate 2013 - Roger & his wife Lyn have lived in Mangere East for 35 years, bringing up their family of four children and five mokopuna. Currently manager of the Mangere East Community Learning Centre, Roger has been a life-long community activist, and awarded a QSM 1999. A leading civil rights & peace advocate, & unionist since 1969. Occupations have included: bus driver, welder, & citizen journalist. Stood for the ARC in 2007, gaining nearly 11,000 votes in Manukau. Led many community campaigns including shutting down the polluting Airport incinerator. Editor of Fare Free NZ blog promoting free public transport, and Kia Ora Gaza website, Roger led two Kiwi delegations on humanitarian convoys to Gaza. He returned to Gaza on a fact-finding mission last November, & organized the NZ Conference on Palestine 2013. Working with MANA to transform Auckland into a vibrant city where the people & the environment always come first.

KIA ORA GAZA MISSION
Kia Ora Gaza is a New Zealand network dedicated to breaking the inhuman and illegal Israeli siege of Gaza by delivering humanitarian aid, fostering fraternal relations, enhancing understanding of Palestine and the Middle East, and cooperating with others who have similar aims.

Spoke at Socialist Aotearoa Conference 2013

Lisa Gibson – Tamaki

Member of the Tamaki Housing Group

Post on Socialist Aotearoa blog – We shall not be moved.

Spoke at Socialist Aotearoa Conference 2013

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yUpi4BRNQ04

John Minto – Mt Roskill

Auckland mayoral candidate 2013 - John Minto for Mayor: “We need a Kiwi socialism”

A major goal of the Minto for Mayor campaign, John explains, is to change the perception of MANA as simply a Maori Party split, with Pakeha (European-ethnicity) leftists merely being supporters of Maori aspirations. John gives this as the reason why, in the last general election in 2011, “all of the MANA candidates in general seats bombed”, and only their main Maori spokesperson, Hone Harawira, was elected to Parliament.

Building “a broader base for MANA in Tamaki” is thus a crucial goal of the campaign. To this end, John mentions the role of revolutionary leftists – in particular the Socialist Aotearoa group – in his campaign, alongside single-issue activists such as the Tamaki Housing Group and some individual Green Party members.

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Makelesi Ngata – Upper Harbour

Candidate 2013  Auckland Council – Maungakiekie-Tamaki Local Board – Tamaki Subdivision – I was born and raised in Aotearoa (New Zealand), female and 36 years of age, Polynesian descent. I come from a very big but close knit family. I grew up in Glen Innes, from Madeline Avenue to Torrington Crescent. I attended Glen Taylor Primary School, then went on to attend Glen Innes Intermediate and finished my secondary school years at Glendowie College, landing my first job at 3 Guys as a checkout girl.

Studying in various tertiary institutions and working in different roles has taught me a lot, it is time to stand up and say “enough is enough”. Discrimination and segregation derives from unjust policies and unjust law; we need to learn from history, not repeat it! Implement a plan that is fair and just. We are not to ‘oppress but to progress’. The big picture is not to be exclusive but inclusive, regardless of race or social background.

Comment The Daily Blog: I totally support you Joe Carolan as we have one heck of a fight on our hands. In saying that the movement of the people have been fighting and supporting at grass roots level. Now that MP Hone Harawira is taking Mana to another level, politicians want to slam the new alliance. I say “grow up and get over it”! Move on because time waits for nobody nor does the Government’s selling of Aotearoa and the breed of merciless corporate corrupted bodied scumbags, that bring in oil rigs and evil mindsets of gentrification as we see evident today. People out there that still want to vote for National? Better check themselves before they wreck themselves. At the end of the day no kiwis will be able to afford homes in their own country. Let alone securing a job and having to pay back debt on student loans. So if you want all this to go away their is only one way to turn to the left! to the left!

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Pat O’Dea – Epsom

Mana candidate for Epsom 2011.

“Pat O’Dea is an Auckland based Socialist Worker activist and former Communist Party of New Zealand member. He is from an Irish Republican supporting family.” Source

Unity Aotearoa

Facebook Biography
Trade unionist, peace activist and land rights activist Pat O’Dea affectionately known as “protest pat” by his workmates is standing in Epsom where he intends use the electorate as a base to attack the right –wing polices advocated by ACT.

“Their policies designed to appeal to red-neck elements are racist and need to be challenged head on and this is exactly what MANA’s policies and people will do,” Mr O’Dea says.

James Papali’i – Mangere

Mr Papali’i also chaired the Mangere East Labour Branch Party for the past 15 years recently resigning to take up the challenge of standing for Mangere representing the Mana party. He is well known in the Mangere Community and he currently works voluntarily for the Samoan Fesoasoani Trust which was founded by Alan Tanuelu and his dad Thomas Papali’i who passed away in 2000. James currently works for M.U.M.A as their Kaitoko Whanau Worker in the areas of Mangere, Otahuhu and Papatoetoe. Source

GUEST BLOG: James Papali’i – Mangere Peace Festival

Joe Trinder – Manukau East

Candidate 2013 - I live in Mangere and am married with one daughter. I am an average Kiwi and work in Information Technology in the Security Industry. I am passionate about Manukau and want free public transport with free wifi. I want to build 20,000 Council rental homes, a living wage for Aucklanders of $18.40 an hour and Robin Hood rates.

Endorsed by Union Auckland.

Mana Party member Joe Trinder, who is contesting the Manukau ward, says he wants to launch a policy to discriminate against the big foreign restaurants.
He was impressed during a recent visit to San Francisco by the cheap, nutritious and healthy food options being offered by the Hispanic community.
But people in south Auckland are facing “death by fried chicken”, Mr Trinder, of Ngati Awa, says.
He says he would also like to get smaller, local businesses which sell fried chicken to change their menus to offer healthier food, such as burritos.

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See: SOCIALISM 2013 – Socialist Aotearoa Conference

12.00pm – 1.00pm | Te Kapehu Whetū: The Future of Mana
With: John Minto Mana’s Auckland Mayoral candidate; Lisa Gibson, Tamaki Makaurau chair; Roger Fowler, Mangere council candidate and Respect Our Community chair;

“Almost everyone” knows Wairangi Koopu

MANA announces their MANA Youth Ambassador – Harawira

Ex New Zealand Warrior hard man and Maori television media personality Wairangi Koopu has joined the MANA strategy team as the new MANA Youth Ambassador in another game changer move for the MANA party.

“When we say we want more change for rangatahi, by rangatahi, we mean it”, says Hone Harawira, MANA Party Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau.

“The great thing about Wairangi is he is known by almost everyone in Aotearoa because not only is he a former Warriors League player but as a presenter on one of the coolest shows on Maori TV, CODE, so his public appeal is really up there”, said Harawira

Koopu is 34 so is getting on a bit to be a youth ambassador. The surname was vaguely familiar but f ‘Warriors’ hadn’t been mentioned I wouldn’t have connected him to league, although I’ve sort of followed the Warriors over the years.

I’ve never heard of “one of the coolest shows on Maori TV, CODE”.

I doubt “almost everyone” will know him, maybe some of MANA’s constituency but not across the youth of the country.

Koopu may work well for MANA but it will be difficult attracting disinterested youth to politics.

Disturbing attack on Harawira’s office

Hone Harawira’s electorate office in Kaitaia has had shots fired at it. MSN News reports:

Mana Party leader Hone Harawira says shots have been fired through the window of his Kaitaia office.
“I get threatened with violence and I get death threats but when somebody starts taking shots at my office than that’s another matter altogether,” he said.

“It’s life-threatening and I hope the police catch the perpetrators soon.”

“Politics can be a tough game and you can get hardened against some of the nasty and mean-spirited attacks against you,” he said on Tuesday night.

“But shooting into an office without knowing who might be inside is more than scary.”

Stuff also reported this but it was the third item in their Today in Politics:

The main street office was reportedly peppered with bullet holes which a spokesperson for Harawira said were thought to have been caused by shots fired from an air rifle.

Harawira told 3 News he was not sure when office was targeted and said he was worried about the safety of his staff.

Oddly I can’t find this on the 3 News website.

If an (alleged) attack like this happened to an office of John Key or David Cunliffe it’s hard to imagine so little media attention on it.

Harawira is right, politics can be mean spirited and nasty. He has a history of being abusive and provocative. In 2009 he said Phil Goff “and his mates should be lined up against a wall and shot” – see ‘Goff should be shot’ – Harawira’s latest gaffe

But regardless of Harawira’s past the actual firing of shots like this is very disturbing.

.

 

Are Labour’s tax plans bottom lines?

Labour has announced changes to tax in the their alternate budge, promoting it as Labour’s alternative Budget for a strong economy and fair society.

The tax increases are modest compared to Labour’s proposals in 2011 and won’t affect most people very much (until CGT kicks in).

The biggest unanswered question is whether these changes would be bottom lines for a Labour led government, or whether Labour would be prepared to negotiate changes with Greens or Mana in a coalition agreement.

Both Greens and Mana support a Capital Gains Tax but they also want to increase other taxes except for lower income earners where they both propose large tax free thresholds.

Are Labour’s tax proposals open to coalition negotiation?

Stuff reports that Labour softens its tax stance.

Labour leader David Cunliffe said the party would impose a new top tax rate of 36 per cent on income above $150,000 a year, a move that would cost someone on $200,000 a year about $30 a week.

It is a major softening of former leader Phil Goff’s 2011 plan to lift it to 39c.

However, a parallel rise in the tax on trusts to 36c would see it bring in about the same amount of extra revenue.

Parker said aligning the trust rate with the top tax rate would avoid trusts being used as tax-avoidance vehicles.

There’s doubt about whether it will bring in the amounts claimed as the company tax rate would remain at 28% which will encourage restructuring for those who can to avoid the higher personal and trust rates.

The change would favour those in business over wage earners, but because it’s just a tweak to the top rate for high income earners most people probably won’t be bothered by it.

The 15 per cent tax on capital gains, excluding the family home, would bring in $790 million a year by 2020.

That seems much as previously announced (2011) with a number of exemptions and still defers to an Expert Panel.

An Expert Panel will be established to deal with issues that are technical in nature and involve areas where a high degree of specialised knowledge is required before a final decision can be reached.

They also propose a ‘crackdown on avoidance’ (which in general is nothing new):

A crackdown on tax avoidance, particularly by multinationals such as Facebook and Google, would bring in $200m a year by 2018-19.

Inland Revenue would “embed” auditors in companies with a history of tax avoidance.

It’s highly questionable whether tax on multinationals can be increased significantly without international co-operation.

Green Party tax policy:

To promote greater equality, the Greens will enhance the progressivity of the tax system by introducing an income tax-free threshold and a comprehensive capital gains tax (excluding the family home).

To create incentives to move the economy in a more sustainable direction, the Greens will introduce a suite of ecological taxes on waste, pollution, and scarce resources.

The introduction of a comprehensive capital gains tax, new ecological taxes, and through better enforcement of current tax law, the tax base will be broadened and hence made more resilient.

Mana tax policies:

Remove GST from all food (and everything else), but introduce a tax on fast foods and soft drinks.

Significantly increase the tax take by introducing a tax on financial speculation, called the “Hone Heke tax” (chopping down GST and income tax), which will be designed using examples of similar taxes introduced overseas. Initially it will be used to replace the annual $15 billion collected by GST.

Reduce the tax paid by low income earners by not taxing the first $27,000 earned and introduce a more progressive tax scale where the wealthy accept the responsibility to pay the largest share of the tax income.

 

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