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Chris Ford: Would You Believe They Put A Man On The Moon?

Today, July 20th, 2009 marks the fortieth anniversary of humankind's first landing on the Moon.

Chris Ford: Are Green Shoots Sprouting Within The Economy?

This week we have been assailed in the media by John Key and other economic commentators by the news that the economic recovery is supposedly near at hand.

Chris Ford: Twenty Five Years Today Since Rogernomics And The Fourth Labour Government

It was 25 years ago today, July 14th, 1984, that I witnessed as a teenager one of the most transformative and ultimately disastrous moments in our political history - the arrival of the Fourth Labour Government and with it the free market counter-revolution heralded by Rogernomics.

Chris Ford: Kate Wilkinson's Decision To Call Folic Acid Review A Good Call

Food Safety Minister Kate Wilkinson's call to conduct a review of the previous government's decision to add folic acid into bread is a good call. I say it is a good call not only from a potential health and safety perspective but also from a disability rights one.

Why do I feel this way?

Chris Ford: Laila Harre - Another Socialist Rose Wilts Before Capitalism's Power

Laila Harre's recent appointment as the new 'Human Resources and Change Manager' for the Auckland Transitional Authority (ATA) has raised eyebrows across the left in both Auckland and throughout New Zealand, given her current role as National Distribution Union (NDU) General Secretary and former All

Chris Ford: Paula Bennett's Appalling Give Away Of Disability Issues

Last week, a little noticed event happened in that Paula Bennett gave away one of her portfolios, Disability Issues, to Maori Party co-leader and minister outside cabinet Tariana Turia.

Chris Ford: Is Winston Peters On The Come Back Trail?

Yesterday, one of the longest and most perplexing political acts of silence in recent times came to an end. Winston Peters appeared on TV One's 'Q and A' programme in his capacity as New Zealand First leader to comment on the foreshore and seabed review group's findings.

Chris Ford: Repealing Foreshore And Seabed Law Is Way To Go

This week, the review into the Foreshore and Seabed Act 2004 reported back to Government and recommended the repeal of this inequitable and racist legislation.

Chris Ford: National's Privatisation Of Health By Stealth

This week Health Minister Tony Ryall announced that District Health Boards (DHBs) would now be able to utilise private hospital and health sector capacity in order to deliver services. What this move signals is the privatisation of health by stealth within New Zealand.

Chris Ford: Message To National - Don't Sell State Housing Stock

National's Housing Minister Phil Heatley last week announced plans to offer some of the existing state housing stock to tenants. While fine in principle, what this policy really means is the undermining of the public housing system as we know it.

Chris Ford: Welfare System Change Needed To Accomodate Tough Times

Debate is heating up about the unfairness and inherent sexism of the current social welfare system. This comes in the wake of people being denied the unemployment benefit if one of their partners is still working and earning an income.

Chris Ford: Michael Jackson - A Capitalist Cultural Icon

You maybe wondering as to why I am blogging about the death of Michael Jackson on this political blog?

Chris Ford: Is National Becoming A Teflon Government?

Is National becoming a teflon government where nothing bad seems to stick to them? This is what the latest batch of opinion polls seems to be telling us.

Chris Ford: Putting Prisoners In Containers Not Humane

Call me a softy on law and order but the placing of extra prisoners in containers is not really humane.

Chris Ford: Are Iranian Election Protests Being Supported By Western Intelligence Agencies?

There is no doubt that there has been large scale and unfair vote rigging against opposition Iranian presidential candidate Mir-Hossein Mousavi in last week's elections.

Chris Ford: Open University Entrance Should Apply For All With No User Pays Education

Last week Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples flew a political kite by suggesting that universities should apply an open entry policy in respect of all Maori students.

Chris Ford: Why I Am Voting Yes In Smacking Poll

At the end of next month we, as New Zealanders, will be asked the following referendum question:"Should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence in New Zealand?"

It is my intention to vote yes in this poll. Why?

Chris Ford: Is Our Health System Able To Cope With Swine Flu?

The main question on everyone's lips this week is how well are we prepared for the coming spread of swine flu into our communities?

Chris Ford: Mount Albert Result - The Winners And Losers

On Saturday night, the real game of the night was here in my hometown of Dunedin where the All Blacks received a narrow pasting from the French.

Chris Ford: British National Party Win In European Poll Shows How Fragile Democracy Is

Last week marked the first time that the British National Party (BNP) has made significant gains in any nationwide UK election since its founding in 1982.

Chris Ford: End To Free Local Calling A Real Threat

Labour's assertions that the Government could let Telecom charge for local phone calls could represent a real threat if a cabinet paper tabled by Bill English is adopted as policy.

Chris Ford: Banks Need To Be Nationalised To Stop Them Gouging Us!

Parliament's finance and expenditure select committee yesterday released a report accusing the banking sector of gouging at the expense of ordinary customers like you and me at a time of global recession.

Chris Ford: UK Labour Government Heading For Landslide Defeat

Today, as Gordon Brown awakes in 10 Downing Street, he must be thinking of why he took on the job of British Prime Minister just on two years ago. Brown's head must be spinning and the thought must be racing around in his mind that 'why was I so keen to do it in the first place?'

Chris Ford: David Bain - The Right Verdict But What Of Innocent Others?

As I write this, a series of five not guilty verdicts has just tonight been handed down in the David Bain murder trial. This ends one of the most contentious criminal cases in New Zealand history with only the Arthur Allan Thomas case providing a precedent in this regard.

Chris Ford: The Tragedy Of Tiananmen Twenty Years On

Twenty years ago yesterday, tanks, troops and guns snuffed out the biggest movement for mass democracy on mainland China that there has ever been. This has had tragic consequences for China.

Chris Ford: Richard Worth Has Gone - Some Questions For John Key

Richard Worth is the first casualty of the John Key National Government and this only eight months after its election.

Chris Ford: I Was About 60% Right On Budget Predictions

Yes, I am back to assess my performance in terms of the predictions made prior to last Thursday's first Budget by Bill English. To be honest, I was evidently wrong on some of my predictions but generally right on 60% of them.

My main predictions for last Thursday were:

Chris Ford: An Open Letter to Metiria Turei

Dear Metiria,

No doubt you would have my congratulatory message on your Facebook wall this past weekend. Again, well done and you are the first person from my own generation (the 70's generation) to lead a parliamentary political party in this country.

Chris Ford: Twenty Years On.....NewLabour Remembered

This coming week will feature a number of pertinent twenty year anniversaries that fell around Queen's Birthday weekend 1989. One was the tragic Tianamen Square massacre in Beijing where the increasingly right-wing rulers of so-called 'Communist' China sent the tanks out to quell popular protest.

Chris Ford: John and Bill Head For A Fight

This week Bill English put this country on a tough Budget driven diet of restricted spending, no tax cuts and minimal increases in social spending. All of this came at a time when John Key and Bill English differed over the objectives of the budget.

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