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Chris Ford: War On P And Dealer Gangs - Is It Time To Decriminalise Drugs And Tackle Poverty Instead?

John Key's pledge to wage war on gangs and in particular the very addictive drug known as 'P' (pure methametaphine) is fraught with difficulty.

Chris Ford: Greens Get Caught Up In Accomodation Rort

Last week Meteria Turei was quizzed on TV One's Q and A about two Green MP's claiming the same parliamentary accomodation perk that has gotten Bill English (or the 'Double Dipper from Dipton' as Winston Peters has labelled him) into heaps of trouble.

Chris Ford: Civil Defence Needs To Get It Right!

The tragedy of last week's tsunami in Samoa and this week's earthquake in the Solomon Islands/Vanuatu region shows that Civil Defence needs to lift it's game.

Chris Ford: Is Bill English From Dipton?

The expenses row which has embroiled Bill English these past few weeks has raised one pertinent question - is he really from Dipton? Or is he a good ol' country boy who merely has settled in Wellington but yet claims to be from Dipton for official purposes?

Chris Ford: John Key's Real Top Ten Reasons For Going To New York

This week John Key introduced himself to the American people by appearing on the popular NBC TV 'The Late Show With David Letterman.'

Chris Ford: Farewell Sue Bradford, You Will Be Missed!

Sue Bradford's resignation bombshell has shocked many members of not only the Green Party but all those who wish for a better and more socially just society too.

Chris Ford: 'H' Bomb Dropped On Whanganui - Hooray For That!

About two weeks ago, I blogged about Michael Laws and his insulting words to a kura kaupapa Maori immersion class at Otaki Primary School who wrote to him regarding the use of the 'h' word in Whanganui's name.

Chris Ford: From the Sublime To The Ridiculous - Larry Baldock's Referendum On Referendums

Yesterday, Larry Baldock presented his latest citizens initiated referendum petition wording for approval by the Clerk of the House of Representatives.

Chris Ford: Anti-American Imperialist Sentiment Behind September 11, 2001 Attacks

Last week I was not able to blog due to the fact that I have had a problem in changing over to a new internet service provider and consequently I missed the September 11th anniversary and the chance to blog about my views surrounding it on that very date.

Chris Ford: Why I Support MMP And Why National Should Break Referendum Promise

Last week John Key said that New Zealanders could now kick the tyres of MMP at the upcoming referendum on the system to be held in conjunction with the 2011 election.

Chris Ford: Undie 500 Shows University And City With Head In The Sand

As a mature student at the University of Otago, I just have to make comment on the events which transpired around the Undie 500 at the weekend.

Chris Ford: Second World War Anniversary Should Make Us Think.....

The 70th anniversary of the commencement of the Second World War should make us think of the sacrifices made long ago and yet how all unnecessary they were from an historical perspective.

Chris Ford: Child Poverty Report Shows Fall Out From New Right Reforms Continues

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development's (OECD) Report into the economic and social status of children across thirty countries shows that the fall out from the New Right reforms of the 1980s and 1990s continues.

Chris Ford: Michael Laws - A Real School Bully?

Today, it was revealed that Michael Laws had written a rude and dismissive letter to the mainly Maori pupils of Otaki Primary School in the Whanganui district (dare I add the 'h' word here for effect).

Chris Ford: And The Roger Award Should Go To.....Telecom!

Recently, the Campaign Against Foreign Control Of Aotearoa (CAFCA) opened nominations for the Roger Awards, the annual award saluting the multinational company or state agency that has done the most to roger the New Zealand economy.

Chris Ford: Maori Seats Imbroligo Brings Out Act's Racist Side

The recent spat over proposals to create Maori seats on the new Auckland 'super city' council between National's support partners, Act and the Maori Party, shows the real racist side of Act.

Chris Ford: RIP Senator Edward (Ted) Kennedy 1932-2009

Finally, the last of the Kennedy brothers, Senator Edward (Ted) Kennedy has died at the age of 77.

Chris Ford: The Right In The Ascendant

This past Friday night, I enjoyed a few beers with one of New Zealand's pre-eminent political commentators, Chris Trotter.

Chris Ford: Gerry Brownlee Giving Us More Of The Same On Power

Last week Gerry Brownlee released the long awaited ministerial review of the electricity sector. Once again it gave us the same old, same old....more market-driven competition and even less state involvement in electricity policy.

Chris Ford: Health Sector Report Signals Another Restructuring And Privatisation

Late last week, Tony Ryall released the report of the Ministerial Review Group 'Meeting the Challenge' on the cost and other structural issues facing the health sector.

Chris Ford: Parliamentary Bad Boy Behaviour Not On - Time For Parliamentary Standards Commissioner

'Bad boys, bad boys, what 'ya gonna do? What ya gonna do when they come for you?'

That is the well known reggae-style theme to the popular reality trash TV show 'Cops'. Perhaps it could be better applied to our current Parliament where bad boy behaviour has come to the fore again lately.

Chris Ford: Don't Send Our SAS To Afghanistan

This week John Key signalled that he was seriously mulling over whether or not to send the NZ Special Air Services (SAS) to Afghanistan to assist NATO and US troops in their fight against a resurgent Taliban. I say that the Government shouldn't do so.

Why?

Chris Ford: Sixty Four Years Since Hiroshima And Nagasaki - Lest We Forget

Today, August 6th, marks the 64th anniversary of the dropping of the first nuclear weapon, in wartime, over the Japanese city of Hiroshima.

Chris Ford: Labour Party And Phil Goff In Peril

One of the biggest opinion polls in New Zealand, the TV One-Colmar Brunton poll has just delivered another savage blow to Labour and its leader Phil Goff.

Chris Ford: New Booze Law Proposals Merit Further Study

This week the Law Commission released a discussion paper recommending a number of changes to our liqour laws in the wake of growing evidence that we are a country which has a terrible binge drinking culture.

Chris Ford: Political Hypocrisy Over Parliamentary Expenses

The release on Thursday of MPs travel, accomodation and expense claims makes interesting reading. In the wake of this year's jaw dropping expenses scandal in Britain, our politicians have been forced to follow suit and declare how they spend their taxpayer allocated funds.

Chris Ford: Paula Bennett Engaging In Fascist Tactics Against Critics

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett's decision to release information regarding the total benefit entitlements being paid to two Auckland Training Incentive Allowance (TIA) recipients, Natasha Fuller and Jennifer Johnston smacks of nothing short of fascist tactics.

Chris Ford: Getting Climate Change Policy Right

Over the weekend, Climate Change Minister Nick Smith told TVNZ's 'Q and A' programme that he thought that the 40 percent carbon emissions reduction target was not achievable and far too expensive. Instead he wants New Zealand to sign onto a lesser target of around 25% by the year 2050.

Chris Ford: Now The End Is Near For Progressives And Jim Anderton

Over the weekend few people may have noticed that the Progressive Party released a statement stating that it would not contest any future elections.

Chris Ford: Government Right To End Provocation Defence In Wake Of Weatherston Trial

Justice Minister Simon Power's decision to effectively repeal the partial provocation defence in murder cases is a welcome one in the wake of the trial by ordeal that Clayton Weatherston subjected his victim Sophie Elliott's family to in the Christchurch High Court these past three weeks.

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