Two Earthquakes In A Week!

New Zealand has had to deal with two earthquakes in the last week – at almost opposite ends of the globe. First was the unexpected election of Donald Trump as the next President of the United States, and the second was the massive earthquake that tumbled many people in central New Zealand and the Upper […]

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Dunne Speaks: The Dance of the Seven Veils is Over

The dance of the seven veils on United States Navy ship visits finally ended this week with the revelation that USS Samson, a guided missile destroyer, would represent the United States at the 75th anniversary celebrations of the Royal New Zealand Navy in November. But like the conclusion of most such dances, the final revelation […]

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Dunne Speaks: Jeremy Little, Andrew Corbyn or Shane Jones?

So, the Leader of the Opposition thinks elections should not be about who wins the centre ground. He is right, up to a point, especially about bringing together “coalitions of interests” in his bid to win office. Where he is wrong, however, is that no New Zealand Government – single or multi party, pre or […]

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Dunne Speaks: Migration & Police – Bad Policy but Good Politics

Most of us are either shaking our heads in disbelief or laughing in amazement at the ongoing train wreck that is the American Presidential Election campaign. The hype, the hyperbole, the sleaze and the vitriol, let alone the virtual disregard for anything approaching the truth, are at a level we have never seen before. And […]

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What’s in a word?

Our world is built on words. Big words, little words, everyday words. Some words are acceptable, others are not. (This week, the British media published the list of English swear words in order of their unacceptability. One or two surprises along the way, maybe, but no real shocks at the top end.) Whatever the words, […]

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Dunne Speaks: Six Steps to Future-Proof the Environment

The world’s first big United Nations sponsored conference on the state of the environment took place in Stockholm in July 1972. Its focus was on “the need for a common outlook and for common principles to inspire and guide the peoples of the world in the preservation and enhancement of the human environment.” Hardly radical […]

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Dunne Speaks: The Rise of the Uber Economy

Last week’s flurry about whether Uber was complying with the law and should be shut down if it was not missed the point entirely. Of course, Uber should comply with the law of the land – that is a given for any business operating here – but that was not really the issue. The bigger […]

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New New Zealanders Deserve a Better Deal

Many of the 60,000 new New Zealanders each year deserve a better deal. Numbers of them are forced to live in difficult circumstances; they are unable to fend for themselves, and no-one speaks up for them. Some are abused, others are assaulted or otherwise degraded. All are potentially vulnerable and we need to do better for […]

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The Tension between central and local government carries on

One hundred and forty years ago, in 1876, New Zealand abolished provincial government. From 1852, New Zealand had been governed through six Provincial Councils, similar to the Australian states of today, with the central government in Wellington having a much lesser role. However, while provincial government was abolished all those years ago in favour of […]

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Dunne Speaks: Will John Key prove to be a progressive moderate?

Within sixteen months New Zealand will have its next General Election. Prime Minister John Key will be seeking to equal Keith Holyoake’s record of four straight election victories. Opposition Leader Andrew Little’s goal will be more modest – he will be seeking to break the mould of his three predecessors and just win an election. […]

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