monday 9th september 2013 VOL 76 ISSUE 19
Designer: Laura Burns email@example.com News Editor: Chris McIntyre firstname.lastname@example.org News Interns: Sophie Boot
E I L N A T S 1938
An Organ of Student Opinion Since 1938
Arts Editor: Philip McSweeney email@example.com Film Editor: Chloe Davies Books Editor: Alexandra Hollis Visual Arts Editor: Simon Gennard Music Editor: Elise Munden Theatre Editor: Gabrielle Beran Games Editor: Patrick Lindsay Feature Writers: Henry Cooke & Patrick Hunn Chief Sub-editor & Uploader: Nick Fargher Distribution Specialist: Jonathan Hobman
contributors: Morgan Ashworth, B.B., Hilary Beattie, Anna Bradley-Smith, Seymour Butts, Henry Cooke, Caitlin Craigie, Matthew Ellison, Catherine Gaffaney, Hugh Haworth, Freddie Hayek, Hector and Janet, Russ Kale, Eve Kennedy, Lux Lisbon, Rory McCourt, Carla Marks, Ollie Neas, Ngai Tauira, Pasifika Students' Council, Carlo Salizzo, Steph Trengrove, Julia Wells, Rick Zwaan Contributor of the Week: #Laura4Prez
advertising: Contact: Ali Allen Phone: 04 463 6982 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
contact: Level 2, Student Union Building Victoria University P.O. Box 600. Wellington Phone: 04 463 6766 Email: email@example.com Website: salient.org.nz Twitter: @salientmagazine Facebook: facebook.com/salientmagazine
Your sturdy stance in the middle of the road and your jolly disposition make you the people’s choice. If you don’t win, it’s only because you’re gay. Which Labour Leader Hopeful Are You? - Page 36
Salient is produced by independent student journalists, employed by, but editorially independent from, the Victoria University of Wellington Students' Association (VUWSA). Salient is a member of, syndicated and supported by the Aoteroa Student Press Association (ASPA). Salient is funded by Victoria Univeristy of Wellington students, through the Student Services Levy. It is printed by APN Print of Hastings. Opinions expressed are not necessarily representative of ASPA, VUWSA, APN Print, spin doctors, selective use of statistics, back-room deals, corruption and the Labour leadership candidates, but we of Salient are proud of our beliefs and take full responsibility for them. This issue is dedicated to:
Editors: Stella Blake-Kelly & Molly McCarthy firstname.lastname@example.org
? his ve om f t ha nd F o a o z t t f F PD .n an o e g w ay th r 't pl ad t.o n on is e D ic D d r lie bl an sa Pu d t a loa e a n su ow is D
STUDENT MEDIA HACKS:
Weekly Content: VUWSA
Features: News feature:
making cents of student money in the red
dysfunction the right choice
last one left
domestic politics 32
We had a lot of trouble coming up with ideas for our ‘Politics’ issue. After considering scrapping it altogether, we decided it would be a pretty sad day for our democracy if the student magazine from the capital city couldn’t think of anything relevant or interesting or important enough to write about. Then David Shearer resigned, and all of a sudden things got a bit exciting. Finally, after the months, and months, and months of—let’s be honest—a pretty mediocre leader of the opposition, Labour looked like it might finally make a go of things at the eleventh hour. We—generally left leaning editors, in the interests of full disclosure (in case you hadn’t guessed already)—resented Shearer, and by extension, the Labour Party for keeping him there. Since the departure of Helen Clark in 2008 the Left has felt tired, irrational, and—just like we were for this issue—out of new ideas. The 2014 election, once heralded by the hacks as Labour’s time to shine, was already starting to seem like a foregone—and very blue—conclusion. But with the departure of Shearer, and the benevolent presence of Helen Clark back in the country on UN business reminding Labour of what they had been, things seemed like they might be looking up. Three bright-eyed, bushy-tailed leadership contenders were rearing to give members the chance to talk out the big issues. Yet soon enough, the big issues just became buzzwords like ‘unity’ and ‘future’ and the only thing you could remember about the candidates was ‘gay’, ‘porn’, and ‘ego’. But that doesn’t really matter for most of us, because we’re not members of the Labour party, and we don’t have a say. Most of us
spend more time going to parties than joining them. A lot of us—judging by 2011’s voter turn out—don’t even vote, for that matter. We cop a lot of flack for not voting, us yoof. We’re told that we should be voting because it means that, as a part of the country, we get a say in building a New Zealand that we want to live in. But if we’re not voting, maybe it’s because we don’t feel a part of the country that we’re growing up in. We’re treated as expenses, indebted for our time at university, rather than investments in the country’s future. When our interest free loans aren’t being hailed as an economic burden equivalent to the GFC, we’re the scape goat for a nationwide drinking problem. Despite pretty shit (but not Greece-level shit tg) youth unemployment rates, and huge numbers of under-paid, over-qualified graduates, the solution was to lower the wages of those who are even younger than us. And when our rents go up? The babyboomer parents’ investment portfolios just became all the more valuable. As a young person, New Zealand’s political discourse can leave you feeling blue and a little red at times. And though it may seem easier to just keep that apathetic distance between you and the democratic structures down the road, it does occasionally have its plus sides: last week in Parliament’s Question Time they talked about blow jobs.
molly & stella
leader hopeful are you? quiz faces to deface
Columns: weekly rant
bent things that go
bump in the night Fixing your life
your students' association
THE McCOURT REPORT VUWSA President Rory McCourt
Kia ora and welcome back from the break! It’s going to be a full-on few weeks in this last quarter of the academic year. You might want to take out your calendar and add these dates: University Fees Meeting with the VC: Tuesday 10 September, 4–5 pm SU217 Have you got some thoughts on whether fees should go up, really up, or really really up? Just kidding, it’s not like our fees go up every year… Anyway the University would love to hear from you at a meeting with the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor and Pro-Chancellor on Tuesday from 4–5pm. While I joke about the powers that be ignoring students’ annual pleas to keep fees flat, this will remain the case until people like you and your friends attend meetings like this and tell them how bullshit it is that fees go up four per cent every year when inflation was only 0.9 per cent last year, and even less this year. The staff pay-increases certainly aren’t four per cent per annum. And most frustrating is that the quality of education is not rising. In fact, contact time is under pressure and tutorials in the firing line as Faculties prepare for cuts and marshal their brightest academics into a rat race for the research dollar. So, it’s a bit shit. But, that’s where you come in. Come along and tell the VC and the Chancellor why you think that the University should resist yet another four-per-cent fee rise (the maximum), and instead focus on getting central government to properly fund education. And be sure to tell them that if they think an eight-per-cent rise is ever okay, they have another thing coming! University Council Fees Meeting: Monday 16 September L2 Hunter Building Come along to the full council meeting on fees, and make sure every Councillor sees the students their decisions will impact on. Healthy Homes Launch and AGM: Wednesday 11 September 1 pm in the Hub In addition to my degree, I rack up StudyLink debt to pay for the cold, wet flats I trundle between every year. We know that rental housing in Wellington is not healthy, and standards need to be introduced to ensure vulnerable groups like students don’t pay $180 a week to live in a mould-infested hellhole. Well, good news my friends. On Wednesday we’ll be announcing alongside Wellington City Mayor Celia Wade-Brown and supportive councillors our shared plan for improving housing for students and other renters. Why housing, you may ask? We’re focussed on housing, like we were on Fairer Fares, because they’re quality-of-life and welfare issues that affect a great number of us. We know that students who get sick don’t get as much out of their courses, and countless late assignments and extensions have been had due to crappy flats. There’s also the cost when students have to miss their part-time work, or the risk to the collective when
someone gets sick. You’ve told us that freezing damp flats are an issue for you, and so they’re an issue for us. Come along and hear how we’re going to make your life a little bit better, and how you can make a difference in getting the campaign over the line. VUWSA General Elections: Nominations open Monday 9 September Ever thought about putting up your hand and getting involved in VUWSA? Our Elections are coming up, and all 10 positions on our Executive are up for grabs. Students’ associations are a fantastic way to serve your fellow students, work on exciting campaigns, and gain leadership and communication skills. From our Chancellor Ian McKinnon, to former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, to successful lawyer Peter Cullen; student associations are a fantastic way to grow as a person and get the experience you’ll find useful for a lifetime to come. So what are you waiting for? Head down to the VUWSA Reception now and drop in your form. Run with a few mates. Have a go! More information about these candidates as the election draws near. Referendum on NZUSA: Thursday 26 September–Wednesday 2 October You might’ve heard recently that your student exec, as well as other students’ associations, have publicly raised some concerns about the effectiveness of NZUSA in the last 18 months. We think it hasn’t been focussing enough on its core business as a campaigning and lobbying organisation on behalf of students. Since then, the Waikato Students’ Union has threatened to permanently withdraw, and VUWSA has called for a major overhaul of the organisation—along with AUSA in Auckland and OUSA at Otago. Here at Vic, a student has asked the Executive to consider a referendum question on NZUSA as part of our General Elections. The Executive has agreed, and the question has been lodged with the independent Election Committee for approval. I will let you know how this goes and when/if they accept. NZUSA, and VUWSA’s membership thereof, has been an issue that’s been kicked around for many years. The recent question on withdrawal is not new, although different in that no students are compulsorily levied anymore to pay the $45,000 membership levy. What is still a concern in a VSM environment, however, is the effectiveness of this organisation. I have no doubt in my mind that VSM is not working, and that students’ associations are not sustainable in the current environment. Student hardship is staggeringly high, and living-cost loans and allowances are failing to keep up with ever-increasing rent, transport and course costs. Right now, we need a national voice for students. Right now, we need NZUSA to have its shit together. That’s why, for the first time in a generation, the VUWSA Executive is leading an honest conversation about NZUSA and the future of student voice nationally. Let me know what you think by flicking me an email: email@example.com. Although this referendum will have only two options, I’m keen to hear your ideas on how to improve this pretty bleak situation. Get engaged, you only live once. Rory
vice-president (welfare) AGM – Rental WoF launch
Kia ora rā koutou mā,
Nau mai hoki mai ki te wāhanga tuarua o te taraemeta nei. Ko te manako kua whai wā ki te whakatā, ā, ki te whakaoti i ngā aromatawai hoki. I ngā hararei kātahi anō ka pahure ake nei i haere tētahi ope o Ngāi Tauira ki te rohe o Waikato mō Te Huinga Tauira. Ia tau ka tū ai tēnei hui kia whakakotahi ngā tauira o tēnā whare wānanga, o tēnā whare wānanga, kia wānanga tahi ai, kia kaitahi ai, kia noho tahi ai. Anō te pai o te hui, o te kaha manaaki mai o Waikato, me te tūtaki i tāngata kē nō whare wānanga kē. Ko tā mātou ki a koutou e hoa mā, me haere ki Te Huinga Tauira ka tika. Kāre e kore ka whai hua koutou, otirā tātou katoa mena ka tae atu tātou ki ēnei momo hui.
I hope everyone’s had a relaxing [study] break and a chance to defrost if you went home. It’s your Welfare Vice President here with some exciting news. As any student living in a flat knows, we get a pretty shit deal for what we pay in rent. While the beanie my sister knitted for me is pretty sweet (thanks Robyn) it’s unfortunately futile in fending off coughs and colds. The patterns of mould, peeling paint and the whistling of draughts that are fit for a dramatic fringe art installation are frequent features of our flats. So what can be done? Put simply, the rental market in Wellington is packed with tenants. Students have been known to outbid each other for even the crappiest Aro Valley abode. We need some basic legislation to ensure that landlords bring their properties up to standard with insulation heating and ventilation. This will have massive positive benefits not only for students but the wider community and economy as a whole. Warmer flats mean that you can keep your fingerless gloves off for those late night essays. They also mean that you’ll be healthier, causing shorter queues at Mauri Ora and less pressure on the wider healthcare system. It also means less reliance on costly inefficient heating, lowering power bills leading to more coin for you and less carbon in the atmosphere. Minimal rental standards are also great for the wider community with benefits for all tenants,’ not just tertiary students. It reduces the effects of child poverty but making it affordable for low-income families to keep their homes warm and healthy. The availability of houses for first home buyers also increases as lazy landlords who don’t want to invest in improvements may dump their properties onto the market, increasing supply and thus reducing house prices (I must confess that I study physics and politics, not economics, so I may have oversimplified it a bit). What’s VUWSA doing about it? We’ve been calling for improvements for a while now, but I’m delighted to say that the ‘talk’ is progressing to action. We’ve been meeting councilors, MPs, and other stakeholders on the issue and this Wednesday we’re hosting the Mayor, Celia Wade-Brown, in the Hub to announce her commitment to work on introducing a ‘warrant of fitness’ for Wellington rentals. Make sure you’re in the Hub at 1pm on Wednesday to hear all the details. As usual there will be pizza. We’re combining this announcement with our Annual General Meeting, which is your chance to exercise your democratic rights as a VUWSA member and vote on important constitutional changes. While the bulk of the changes are grammatical, we are also proposing to open up our elections to all students regardless of whether or not you’re a member. Come along and have your say on the proposal. See you on Wednesday, Rick Zwaan
I te tau nei i toa a Ngāi Tauira i te whakataetae kapa haka me ngā hākinakina hoki. I tutuki pai rawa atu ngā tāuira o te whare wānanga nei. Nā e tika ana kia tuku mihi atu ki a ngā kaitautoko i āwhina mai i a mātou kia tae pai ai ki taua na hui, ara Te Whanau o te Tumu Herenga Waka marae, ā, tō tātou nei Toiahurei anō hoki. Ka kore ngā mihi mō koutou e ngū. Ngā mihi, Ngāi Tauira.
PASIFIKA STUDENTS' COUNCIL “We should not be defined by the smallness of our islands but in the greatness of our oceans. We are the sea. We are the ocean. Oceania is us. We must wake up to this ancient truth and together use it to overturn all hegemonic views that aim ultimately to confine us again, physically and psychologically. It is time to create things for ourselves, to create established standards of excellence that match those of our ancestors.” —‘Epeli Hau’ofa LOTO AHO STUDY SESSION When: Wednesdays, 4–6 pm at Te Taratara a Kae, Māori and Pasifika Space, Kelburn Library Level 2. HULA WITH TE KURA Wednesdays, 7.30 am at Dance Room, VUW Rec Centre. TIVAEVAE-MAKING SESSION Wednesdays, 5 pm at Pasifika Haos. FHSS DROP-IN COURSE ADVICE Fridays, 1 pm at Pasifika Haos. TE PUTAHI ATAWHAI DROP-IN SESSIONS with Pasifika Support Co-ordinators: Jenny Taotua and Sera Tokakece. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 1 pm at Pasifika Haos.
Left? Right? Left right out? Regardless of your politics, join the Salient news team! Email firstname.lastname@example.org with news, tips, goss, stories and pictures of cats that look like David Cunliffe.
VUWSA and VUW finally agree on something Counselling funding going up to help students feeling down Sophie Boot
Students at Victoria could soon find it easier to access counselling services, though they would have to pay more in compulsory student levies. VUWSA has agreed to a two-per-cent increase in the Student Services Levy (SSL) on the grounds that the rise will be used to help fund the extremely stretched student counselling services. The SSL is a compulsory fee paid by all students at the start of each academic year. In 2013, it was $676 for internal students, and $338 for distance students. The rise for 2014’s SSL will be finalised at a University Council meeting on 16 September, with more details in Salient to come. The Student Counselling Service, which employs nine full-time counsellors and provides one-on-one counselling to around ten per cent of all Victoria students, is funded entirely through the SSL. The allocation of the SSL is decided by the University with the help of the Advisory Committee on the Student Services Levy (ACSSL), which comprises members of University management and three members of the VUWSA Executive: President Rory McCourt, Vice-President (Welfare) Rick Zwaan, and Vice-President (Academic) Sonya Clark, who all consult with students via representative groups and surveys. Through ACSSL, VUWSA agreed to support a SSL rise on the provision that counselling receive more funding, that waiting times for health services remain the same, and that there be greater resources available for representation through programmes like class representatives and faculty delegates. “One per cent was our preferred rise [for the 6
SSL]; if it went to two per cent to secure [the services] then that was acceptable to us,” said McCourt, stating VUWSA was concerned about students not being able to see a counsellor when they need to, without a wait.
using the service in 2001, when the University population was 12,000, but both figures have nearly doubled since then. There are now 22,000 students at Victoria, nine to ten per cent of whom use the student counselling service at some stage.
“VUWSA has, for every year I can remember, received complaints from students about the waiting times to see a counsellor around this time of year… this is a service which does need more resources to cope with increasing demand from students.”
Students Salient spoke to said that they had been deterred by waiting times of up to three months, and that they felt that the services were inaccessible.
Though Victoria is relatively well-funded in terms of student counselling compared to other universities, the service still struggles to keep up with demand with waiting times as long as two months for a non-urgent appointment. When Salient approached counselling services, the next available counselling appointment was 50 days away. A two-per-cent rise would be enough to cover an additional counsellor position, though McCourt notes VUWSA’s support of a SSL increase is not contingent on the addition of a new counsellor, but on reducing waiting times by whichever means the counselling service sees fit. An additional counsellor would provide five hour-long counselling sessions per day, equating to around 7–800 more appointments available for students over the course of a year. With an average student requiring just under four appointments per year, this would make counselling available to a further 200 students. While the University has not cut funding for student counselling in the past ten years, demand has grown rapidly: around five to six per cent of students were
“An increased capacity would make a huge difference… People who are having a shit time, at any point in their lives, should be able to access counselling. It should not be something that is only sought in extreme situations,” said one student. The counselling service, managed by Gerard Hoffman, has looked at various new initiatives to make best use of its limited resources. It has increasingly offered preventative measures such as open seminars on stress management, as well as increasing the hours of on-duty counsellors to six hours a day during high-demand periods in the final weeks of term. “My belief is that part of the issue is that this place is inherently stressful, and that students aren’t wellenough equipped to handle these stresses. “I think we could [develop students’ resilience] a lot quicker and a lot more effectively… so that we reserve as best we can our resources for students who really need us,” said Hoffman. Students can find the counselling service at Mauri Ora, on level one of the Student Union Building, at email@example.com, or on (04) 463 5310. >>> salient.org.nz
The $45,000 question decides to ask the audience, vuwsa Chris McIntyre, with additional reporting from Sam McChesney, CRITIC
Students finally get a say in their membership of the last compulsory union in New Zealand, along with what will happen to $45,000 of their money.
stating it was unclear how VUWSA should act if students vote to retain NZUSA membership, but no reforms take place.
A referendum question is expected to be included in this year’s VUWSA elections over the continuation of VUWSA’s membership in the New Zealand University Students’ Association (NZUSA). The question will read, “That VUWSA stay in NZUSA”, with “Yes, but only with reforms” and “No” being the answers available to students. The Executive has approved the question, referring it to the Elections Committee which is largely a rubber-stamping body.
“VUWSA should have proposed a straight inor-out referendum rather than asking whether VUWSA should leave NZUSA or remain a member ‘with reforms’.
At this stage the referendum will not be binding, meaning that if students vote not to retain membership, VUWSA will not necessarily pull out of the national body. While the VUWSA constitution does not allow for binding referendum questions, the Executive can make it binding by passing a motion to that effect at an Executive meeting. VUWSA President Rory McCourt is in favour of the referendum being non-binding, telling Salient the VUWSA Executive is best placed to make a final decision on NZUSA membership. The referendum was requested by student Nick Cross, who said in his email [referendum request] to McCourt that NZUSA is “ineffective” and “no longer represents value for money for Victoria students”, especially given current deficits. The $45,000 membership levy VUWSA paid NZUSA in 2013 came out of VUWSA’s reserves, as their current revenue from contracts and services like car parks does not cover their operating costs. VUWSA’s 2013 operating deficit is expected to be $178,000, with up to a further $100,000 of deficit coming from capital expenditure. “In addition to wasting student money, remaining a member of NZUSA will only forestall [an inevitable] decline and prevent students from being fairly represented on a national level … VUWSA members deserve to have a say on this issue,” said Cross, who hopes for a new national representative lobby for students. Cross told Salient he was pleased with the outcome of his request but expressed disappointment at the wording of the question,
“At this point, it’s completely unclear what these so-called reforms are: no specific reform proposal has been made public.” The VUWSA Executive will be supporting the “Yes, but only with reform” option, though McCourt has told Salient VUWSA will not be supporting this option financially in the form of a major campaign. VUWSA’s referendum is the latest setback for NZUSA in what has been a rough recent history, with the Otago University Students’ Association (OUSA) also planning to hold a similar referendum in their elections later this year. As reported in Salient last month, Waikato Students’ Union (WSU) President Aaron Letcher announced that WSU would “temporarily withdraw” from NZUSA, citing value for money as the primary reason. The move was criticised by McCourt, OUSA President Francisco Hernandez, and Auckland University Students’ Association (AUSA) President Daniel Haines as a “rash and hasty decision”. While associations maintain NZUSA President Pete Hodkinson was made aware of dissatisfaction numerous times over the past 18 months, Hodkinson says he was blindsided by the criticism which came to the fore as WSU threatened to withdraw from NZUSA. “I think [dissatisfaction] would have been much easier to engage with if that had been brought forward … maybe not quite in this heated, public, intense way, but a lot more directly, a lot earlier in the piece. It has been reported Letcher wishes to remove both Hodkinson and NZUSA Executive Director Alistair Shaw, and convert the full-time President position into two part-time Co-President positions to be filled by Hernandez and McCourt.
McCourt would not comment on what he called Letcher’s “fantasy”, while Hernandez is reportedly too busy with his OUSA duties and a bid for the Dunedin City Council to take on an NZUSA presidency or co-presidency. Presidents of VUWSA, OUSA and AUSA have said they would propose a series of reforms at the NZUSA Congress in early November to ensure their three associations—the three largest financial contributors to NZUSA—would have control of the reform process. These reforms include a more inclusive governance structure, a renewed focus on core services, and more student-relevant campaigns. For more information on the referendum, see Eye on Exec on page 12, and next week’s Salient will include more information on the outcomes of staying in, or leaving NZUSA. A RECENT HISTORY Pre-2011: Compulsory student membership meant students’ associations, and thus NZUSA, had a steady revenue stream and maximum membership numbers Late 2011: The Education (Freedom of Association) Amendment Bill is passed, meaning membership becomes voluntary and students’ associations lose previously guaranteed revenue streams NZUSA reforms to include polytech students’ associations, combines Co-Presidents to single President, and hires an executive director Pete Hodkinson, from a polytech background, is elected President of NZUSA 2012: NZUSA loses $160,000—a third of revenue—as associations cannot afford levies any more, and levy for members is halved NZUSA member associations begin to make their unhappiness with Hodkinson known No confidence is elected as NZUSA President. Tears follow, and Hodkinson (the sole candidate) is re-elected shortly afterwards in a second round of voting 2013: Member associations’ unhappiness with NZUSA continues as Hodkinson tours the country running campaigns not seen as relevant to students, or student issues WSU threatens to pull out, bringing waves of criticism of NZUSA into the public domain Three largest association presidents, VUWSA’s McCourt, OUSA’s Hernandez and AUSA’s Haines announce they will propose reforms to the NZUSA Congress to be held in November VUWSA and OUSA decide to hold referenda on their respective continued membership in NZUSA
VUWSA ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 2013 Chris McIntyre
VUWSA to open heart, voting, to students Not joining VUWSA may no longer be enough to escape student politics, with the Association seeking to open voting in VUWSA elections to all students, rather than just members. VUWSA will seek to pass a number of constitutional amendments at its AGM in the Hub this Wednesday, including a motion allowing students who have specifically chosen not to join VUWSA to vote in VUWSA’s elections. VUWSA’s mandate has been consistently challenged by the University for not representing all students, as only three-quarters are members. This membership number was part of the rationale behind the University taking away VUWSA’s seat on the University Council. A University review of representation that is currently underway is looking at new models to salvage student representation following the collapse of the Student Forum, and it will be recommending whether or not VUWSA should regain the seat that was taken off them and given to the now-defunct Student Forum. It is expected VUWSA will be using the proposed
universal elections as weight to their argument for a return, as they could claim to be fully representative of the student body once again. VUWSA President Rory McCourt told Salient the University had been “reasonable, rather than ideological” when evaluating VUWSA’s role, stating the motion was aimed at increasing the student voice. “We believe that as many students as possible should be able to hold us to account. All students currently get a say in who their Class Rep is, why shouldn't they also have the democratic right to choose who represents them on Academic Board? “Giving every student a say in our elections is about recognising that every student's voice matters.” In the past, all students could vote in VUWSA elections, as all students were automatically VUWSA members. Since Voluntary Student Membership began in 2012, only VUWSA members have been able to vote in VUWSA elections. If the amendment passes, it will take effect at the VUWSA elections later this year.
Also at the AGM, a motion will be tabled to nominate a new VUWSA life member, reflecting their extraordinary service towards helping students. Their identity will be revealed at the meeting, but it’s expected McCourt will be nominating himself. Current life members include Labour MP Andrew Little and Hugh Rennie QC. This will be the first AGM to take place inside the Hub. A quorum of 100 students must be reached for the AGM to go ahead, and be maintained for the duration of the meeting—a relatively small number, yet one which has proven difficult to reach in previous years. Last year’s AGM was cut short when VUWSA lost quorum after a number of students left to go and claim free Red Bull that was being given away on campus. McCourt has told Salient the Hub provides “unique challenges” for counting and maintaining quorum, and with so many avenues for students to escape the dreariness of student democracy, VUWSA will be relying on the free pizza more than ever.
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Constitutional changes to be moved at the AGM
Opening elections to all students.
Clarifying the pay of Executive Officers from trimester-based pay rates to annual pay. This will incentivise Officers to cooperate with handover and planning between years.
A raft of minor changes, including typos,
inconsistencies, and macrons in Ngai Tauira. Changes to the Publications Committee Charter Pubs Comm will be able to oversee alternative media forms outside of Salient; for example, the VBC. These will be delegated to Pubs Comm by the Executive.
Wednesday’s AGM will be followed by a Housing Forum, where VUWSA will announce plans for a ‘rental warrant of fitness’ local Bill. The Bill would set up a warrant-of-fitness scheme for rental properties, enforcing a minimum standard for rental properties throughout Wellington by way of Government legislation. The Housing Forum is aimed at hearing students’ stories on the quality and price of accommodation in Wellington. Attending the Forum will be councillors including Mayor Celia Wade-Brown, and other community groups who will speak on some of the issues facing students living in substandard housing conditions. VUWSA President Rory McCourt hopes students will bring their own ideas to the forum, stating the proposed local Bill is just “one aspect of a solution to the housing problem”. While VUWSA hopes a local Bill will have wide support among Wellington City Council (WCC) councillors, it is as yet unclear whether this will be the case. In March, VUWSA sought a bylaw to introduce minimum rental-housing standards, with Wellington City Councillor Iona Pannett stating at the time that regulation for minimum housing standards would be best brought in at the national level. The Bill’s success may also depend on the outcome of October’s mayoral election. While current Mayor Celia Wade-Brown is supportive of the idea, there is no guarantee a new mayor would be, should Wade-Brown fail to be reelected. However, the Bill’s success is not entirely dependent on the views of the Mayor, as the Council votes as a whole. VUWSA has talked to “most councillors”, according to McCourt, “most” of whom are in support of the Bill and suggest a majority will be reached on Council. Councillor and leading mayoral candidate John Morrison did not return Salient’s calls. salient.org.nz <<<
VUWSA announces plans for a rental WOF local Bill, in partnership with Celia Wade-Brown.
Minor grammatical changes.
Sticking it to the rents: the vuwsa housing forum VUWSA is hoping a proposed Bill will be a local anaesthetic to students’ housing pains.
FROM A DREAM TO REALITY? VUWSA’S PLAN FOR RENTAL STANDARDS
VUWSA’s push for a local Bill follows a similar move by the Otago University Students’ Association (OUSA), which announced measures in July to get a local Bill before Parliament to fix Dunedin’s housing problems. When asked in July, VUWSA President Rory McCourt described OUSA’s local Bill idea as “really interesting”, and said VUWSA would monitor OUSA’s outcomes. He has since been impressed with OUSA’s progress. “We’ve kept a close eye on OUSA and we’re really pleased to see [their Bill] is workable and gaining traction. There’s no reason to think here in windy, wet Wellington we can’t do the same,” said McCourt. VUWSA has talked to certain community groups, such as Grey Power, to gauge response, but has not yet talked to landlords or property owners. McCourt says VUWSA will do this during the drafting process, though landlords’ previous stance on similar issues suggests they are unlikely to get on board with the latest scheme. The New Zealand Property Investors’ Federation has previously stated warrants of fitness are “not the solution to unhealthy homes”, and one landlord spoken to by Salient last week was sceptical of the proposed Bill. “Legislation to improve housing would have to cover more of my expenses, to be honest. Take insulation costs for example—they’re not tax-deductible. While a national warrant of fitness for rental housing is currently being developed, this will be trialled on state houses first. There is no current timeline for a wider roll-out of the policy, meaning students in rental properties are unlikely to be affected in the short- to medium-term by the Government’s measures. “Officials are continuing to work on the elements of housing conditions to be included in a WoF and how it will be assessed, administered and enforced,” said Minister of Housing Dr Nick Smith in May.
The Wellington City Council will draft the Bill, with cooperation from VUWSA.
The Council has to pass a motion to support the Bill at a Council meeting. Local bills are supposed to be uncontroversial, so whether the Bill fits this criteria will be up for debate.
The Bill will be presented to Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson. Robertson has already committed to sponsoring the Bill in Parliament.
Robertson will give notice to the Clerk of the House, who will introduce the Bill to Parliament where it will progress to a first reading like any other Bill.
When the first reading will occur depends on a few things: its place on the Order paper (i.e. how many other bills are also coming up for Parliament to debate), and how long it takes the Attorney-General to decide whether the Bill complies with the Bill of Rights Act (this shouldn’t take long).
If the Bill gets to Parliament, it is expected to pass, as Governments seldom vote down local bills.
Arrest and relaxation Handcuffs instead of a hand up for worst student-loan defaulters Anna Bradley-Smith
Students heading away on their OE may be stung with a surprise at the border, with new legislation poised to stop the worst loan-defaulters at the border. The Student Loan Scheme Amendment Bill (No 3), which would allow for the arrest of those who have defaulted on student-loan repayments, passed its first reading in Parliament under urgency last week. The Bill—a product of the 2013 Budget—seeks to achieve the Budget’s primary aim of debt reduction through targeting overseas borrowers and those thinking of heading abroad. The Bill, which passed its first reading 61 votes to 59, would allow IRD to issue arrest warrants for people on the New Zealand border who have refused to repay student-loan debts. Revenue Minister Todd McClay has compared this to arresting a parent liable for child support payments planning on leaving the country, claiming that the threat of arrest would act as a deterrent for those who are planning on leaving the country with remaining student debt.
“Similar provisions for student loans would send a clear message to all borrowers that non-compliance is unacceptable, and there are real consequences for ignoring repayment responsibilities,” said McClay.
McClay says that this is to prevent overseas-based borrowers from falling into default, and that, “with accurate contact details, Inland Revenue can educate borrowers about their obligations and put early intervention in place.”
As well as imposing tougher measures on serious student-loan defaulters, the Bill proposes fixed repayment obligations for New Zealanders based overseas, and adds new thresholds that will increase repayment obligations. In order to enforce the new legislation on New Zealanders abroad, the Bill would see increased informationsharing between government departments, whereby contact details for passport applications would be shared with the IRD.
The Bill’s reception has been mixed, with Opposition Spokesperson for Revenue David Cunliffe stating that the Bill is “an erosion of civil liberties”, while Green Party MP Holly Walker labelled the policy “dangerous” and “unnecessarily punitive”.
This interdepartmental sharing would allow for greater exchange and sharing of the personal information of any student with a student loan. As the Student Loan Scheme Act 2011 does not allow for the sharing of contact details of borrowers not in default, the Bill contains an amendment enabling the Commissioner of IRD to obtain the contact details of all those who borrow under the scheme.
“It is fair to have to pay it [student loan] off while overseas, but the new legislation could intimidate those with loans from dealing with IRD.”
One student spoken to by Salient, Zac SandersonHarris, views IRD issuing arrest warrants as “overboard” and “extreme”.
The Finance and Expenditure Select Committee is now considering the Bill before further legislative progress can be made. Their report, which would affect the over–70 per cent of current tertiary students who have a student loan, is due by 27 February 2014.
landslide victory in vuwsa by-election apathy rides in on 94 percent Chris McIntyre
It’s the end of the road for by-election enthusiasts, with results in from what was the second by-election in as many weeks held before mid-trimester break. Former Wellbeing and Sustainability Officer Rick Zwaan and fresh face Rāwinia Thompson were elected to Executive positions in the last week before mid-trimester break, becoming Vice-President (Welfare) and Education Officer, respectively. The two will hold their positions for the remainder of 2013. Zwaan beat Arthur Bird 748 votes to 160, with Thompson, a first-year Law, Politics and Policy student, beating Ravitesh Ratnam 548 votes to 368. Zwaan’s promotion to Vice-President (Welfare) means the role of Wellbeing and Sustainability Officer is now left unfilled. The VUWSA 10
Executive will jointly cover the duties of the Wellbeing and Sustainability Officer for the remainder of the year. As previously reported in Salient, a by-election was held after the resignations of VicePresident (Welfare) Simon Tapp and Education Officer Gemma Swan. Tapp left to take up a parliamentary position with the Green Party, while Swan struggled with the workload. Included in the by-election was an election for the second student representative on Publications Committee, the body which oversees Salient. Law and
Political Science student John Stewart was elected to the position, beating out Zwaan 592 votes to 318. Ollie Neas, the other student representative, was the sole candidate for the two Publications Committee positions at the VUWSA elections last year, meaning one position was left unfilled. Total voter turnout was approximately six per cent. Nominations for candidates wishing to stand for the 2014 Executive are now open, and will stay open until Thursday 19 September. Voting will be held from 26 September to 2 October. Rick Zwaan, Vice-President (Welfare) Rāwinia Thompson, Education Officer John Stewart, Publications Committee Student Representative >>> salient.org.nz
Cast your eye on this Vic student’s Evill work plastered with success Catherine Gaffaney
A Victoria graduate has bought sci-fi to life, designing a futuristic cast which could revolutionise how broken bones are treated. Evill recently won the national branch of the prestigious James Dyson Award, making it through to the award’s international round and receiving $3000 to travel to London to show his design at the London Design Festival. Called the Cortex cast, the revolutionary design uses a 3D-printed honeycomb structure that can be digitally tailored to follow the contours of the body and support each patient’s specific needs. Unlike traditional plaster casts, Jake Evill's design is inexpensive, washable, recyclable, shower-friendly, lightweight, and able to be hidden under clothing. David Lovegrove, Fellow and professional member of the Designers Institute and the award’s head judge said Cortex was victorious because of "its global reach in improving many people’s lives" and its potential to "change the way broken bones are treated in the future".
The cast has reportedly already piqued interest from orthopaedic surgeons in Europe and the US, and has received praise from the design community the world over. In June and July, Evill’s design was published on a number of influential design blogs garnering tens of thousands of shares and views online and on social media. Evill designed Cortex for a project in a third-year Industrial Design class after breaking his hand and spending months with a bulky plaster cast. “I was surprised by just how non-user-friendly those cumbersome things are,” said Evill.
Evill's lecturer Ross Stevens said Cortex is a brilliant example of the potential of 3D printing. 3D printing "makes products more like the way nature does”. “Nature makes things out of cells, layer by layer; 3D printing does the same," said Stevens. Stevens also commended the quality of the product, despite its cheap manufacturing costs, and said it could technically be ready for the market in a couple of years were it not a medical product. Medical products require significant medical trials, to make sure they do not cause any problems.
“Wrapping an arm in two kilos of clunky, and soon to be smelly and itchy, plaster in this day and age seemed somewhat archaic to me.” So, he set out to design something better. He was inspired by the honeycomb structure, because the shape is both strong and light like the bone it is protecting, and, "as usual, nature has the best answers”.
EYE ON EXEC the holiday catch-up: in pictures
Students’ association to eradicate student poverty Do they know there’s an ASOS sale at all Steph Trengrove
Auckland University Students’ Association (AUSA) are hoping small change will bring change, using donations from students to assist students in need. The ‘Students for Students—Tauira mō ngā take tauira’ initiative encourages students to donate sums beginning from $1 a week which go towards funding several welfare services provided by AUSA, including food parcels, textbook scholarships and hardship grants. These services are provided to students in genuine financial distress, suffering unexpected and serious hardship, says AUSA Welfare Officer Jessica Storey. “Often the students we help… are studying while taking care of children, or have faced unexpected medical costs or unemployment, and are subsisting on the absolute bare minimum and struggling to make ends meet.” AUSA Administrative Vice-President Cate Bell, founder of the programme, says that it is an accessible way in which students can make a positive difference in other students’ lives. “Students for Students is a great and simple way for every student at the University of Auckland to help others,” said Bell. VUWSA Vice-President (Welfare) Rick Zwaan was aware of AUSA’s initiative, but suggested
such a scheme was not necessary at Victoria as every student contributes $24 to a hardship fund. Victoria’s total hardship funding, some of which goes towards services provided by VUWSA, is much greater than that of Auckland. “Vic has a better approach where all students put in, and students who are in need benefit,” said Zwaan. Further support for the programme is coming from outside Auckland. Executive Director of the New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA), Dr Alistair Shaw, says that the scheme demonstrates what can be achieved by strong student leaders responding to key issues such as the affordability of tertiary education. Salient spoke to Auckland University secondyear Engineering student Misha Sinner, who would “definitely consider” contributing, and be “proud” to help out. “While you don't have to contribute to apply for help if you were in need, contributing now would certainly make me feel better about applying later should that situation arise,” said Sinner. Donations from the public are welcomed, with donations through the AUSA website. Victoria students can find financial-advice services in the ‘services and support’ section of the VUW website.
every Canadian but that of course is impossible.”
stay classy, world Intervention in Syria looks like only a matter of time, as the Syrian government began killing innocent people in a slightly different way. The killing will be stopped with another, different sort of killing, which is apparently okay in the circumstances. Egypt’s recently ousted President, Mohamed Morsi, has been sent to trial for inciting the murder of protesters, showing ousted Labour leader David Shearer things could always be worse. As of last week, footballer Gareth Bale is the most expensive person to ever kick a ball after being bought by Spanish team Real Madrid for 100 million euros. The deal will pay him 300,000 pounds a week, which early reports suggest may be enough to buy happiness. Vietnam has effected laws banning news articles, in addition to any material that “opposes” the Government, being shared on social media. Luckily, Vietnam’s one-party system naturally means 100 per cent of people support the Government anyway. The end of University holidays has been met with pleasure from returning students, who have not found such a good source of small talk since the winter snow of 2011. Sources have informed Salient the two-week break went “too quickly” and “wasn’t long enough”.
headlines that weren't
The Prime Minister was meaning to refer to ‘tweeting’ instead of the ass-shaking dance craze, with his office issuing a statement later saying he “knows how important social media is to Canadians and ... has never and will never twerk”.
TWERKING HARD OR HARDLY TWERKING?
A LIBERAL DOSE OF EMBARRASSMENT
HIV goes viral in Cameroon
Tony Abbott, who in all likelihood will be the new Australian Prime Minister by the time this issue of Salient comes out, is leaving nothing to chance in his election campaign.
Labour leadership campaign prompts worrying spate of ‘fuckmarry-kill’ questions
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is going to find it difficult to shake his latest political gaffe, telling a group he enjoys twerking but doesn’t “get to do it as often” as he would like. Harper went on to say that he “has a lot of fun twerking”, but only does it with close friends and “every now and then with President Obama”.
Targeting the red-blooded male vote, Abbott brought his two daughters out on a television appearance on reality show Big Brother in an effort to sway undecideds.
“Speeches like this have their place for sure … but a quick twerk is a great way to express what I’m thinking,” he told the silent crowd.
“'If you want to know who to vote for, I'm the guy with the not-bad-looking daughters,” Abbott told the audience.
“What? Don’t I look like I twerk?” Harper continued, adding he “would like to twerk with
Incumbent Kevin Rudd’s daughter could not be reached for comment.
Man not sure if he has what it takes to join Skeptics’ Association “Hi hungry, I’m Dad,” says local dad Peter Dunne’s hair could reach “catastrophic levels” by 2050, warns UN 13
left A Pain-Free Labour
P O L I
By Carla Marks The Labour leadership contest is a story that has three losers. The two candidates who don’t take the throne of the party, and John Key. Contrary to all predictions by anybody who knows anything about the personalities within the party, the leadership contest is allowing Labour to flourish. The leadership meetings are providing nothing but positive stories for Labour as talented candidates shine, passionate members discuss their voting decision and bold policies are presented. For months the Labour caucus avoided activating this process. In full knowledge of the dwindling support for Shearer both within caucus and among the voting public, they gave him chance after chance for fear of four weeks of disarray with no leadership and no direction. They couldn’t have been more wrong. From the outset, Party bosses instructed all members and candidates that a clean fight would be fought. No personal attacks would be permitted, allowing a genuine battle of ideas to win over the party. Almost immediately, two of the three candidates began committing the party to a lurch toward the left; they spoke in terms of “hope”, “opportunity” and “putting people first”, and the eyes of the country focussed on Labour reconnecting not only with their members, but with New Zealanders. Key might’ve thought that he had succeeded at ousting Shearer, but he had really dug his own grave. The democratisation of the leadership selection has forced candidates to appeal to rank-and-file members of the party, who, since the days of Clark, have largely sat to the left of caucus. Leadership candidates have embarked on a derailing of the third-way track laid by the Clark government in an attempt to win votes, and they are creating a narrative which will appeal to all New Zealanders. They are united on making Labour about people again, about helping the everyday Kiwi with a job, a home and something to hope for. Giving Labour members a vote has set the groundwork for a Labour victory in 2014. It has made Labour relevant again. It has moved the party to the left and forced the next leader to commit to the things which matter to voters. It has reinvigorated the party. It has put an end to the internal bickering and leadership speculation. It hasn’t even produced a new leader yet, but it has already created the worst nightmare for Key.
It’s a Jungle Out There This week Salient takes a look at politics of the Animal Kingdom to explain the inner workings of New Zealand’s political parties.
National Consistently polling leagues ahead of the other parties, there’s no doubt about it: the National Party are the human embodiment of a school of snapper— the animal New Zealanders are most interested in.
Labour: The Chicken Coop
When each hen knows its place in the roost, this brood of hens will live in happy harmony. However, throw a cat amongst the chickens— or a leadership departure amongst the MPs— and watch the feathers get ruffled.
When determining how battles will be fought and won in the animal kingdom, it is common knowledge that, where one group of animals is more invested in a natural resource, the more they will invest in fighting for that resource— whatever the cost may be. Although the Greens may have faced the cost of political gaffes over this term (see: Hey Clint!, quantitative easing), their honest campaign for New Zealand’s natural resources has rings true with an increasing number of voters.
Chickens, much like the Labour Party, thrive on a strict hierarchical in which each individual knows his or her place in the pecking order. With a strong mother hen on the top perch, the others fall into place, dedicating most of their time— and rightly so—to hatching new policy, rather than leadership challenges. When the hierarchy is thrown into disarray, the brood becomes distracted as each hen and roo must once again vye for his or her place in the front bench. While they may seem a harmless bunch, a distressed bunch of chooks is a force to be reckoned with—prolonged in-fighting can lead to pecking and, ultimately, cannibalism. RIP Poultry Goff and Drumstick Shearer.
New Zealand First: The Wolf Pack Wolves, like meerkats, African wild dogs, and NZ First, are described as following a ‘despotic leadership system’, in which one member is considered dominant, with the other submissive members falling into rank below their leader. Winston Peters, with his tenacity and second-to-none ability to charm the elderly, is clearly the leader of this
T I C S
right Labour has acted, now it must lead By Freddie Hayek
pack, who are bound together by their pack mentality: referendums and super gold cards. Submissive wolves are ranked behind the alpha wolf according to their strength and ability to hold fights—you can tell a wolf ’s rank by how it behaves in Question Time or the media (see Beta Wolves: Asenati ‘Blow Jobs’ Taylor and Richard ‘Wogistan’ Prosser). On the bottom of the leadership rung are the pack’s omega wolves—those who the rest of the pack bully and care for the least, and may go it alone if pack tensions escalate (see: Lone Wolf Brendan Horan).
Endangered species: Mana/Hone Harawira Mana’s Taniwha Hone Harawira is considered to be a fearsome guardian of the radical left in New Zealand politics, but is so rarely seen in Parliament that some believe him to be a mythical being.
donations—and does not respond well to isolation (its been a long, hard, lonely term). Often trained as sniffer dogs, a beagle is hard to distract once it has obtained a scent—which explains Banksy’s doggedly determined campaign against animal testing.
United Future/Peter Dunne Much like the Paradise Duck, this extremely territorial bird returns to the same nesting ground—his faithful Ohariu electorate—year after year. They say that these birds mate for life; once Dunne had set his sights on Andrea Vance, he was prepared to pay any price—even his Ministerial portfolio—to woo the bird of his dreams.
As your columnist has predicted throughout this year, David Shearer had a countdown clock on his leadership. Shearer is a fundamentally good man. Decorated by the Queen, humanitarian, and all-round good bastard. Good does not cut it, however, against the titan that is John Key. The left saw a glimpse of Key against John Campbell at the full height of his powers. The collective gasp in the leftiesphere all came to one conclusion: Shearer would be utterly torn apart by the Prime Minister in 2014, and the left would lose. It all came to a head during Question Time. Shearer accused John Key of not consulting with other parties about the GCSB bill. Key, furiously, revealed that David Shearer had come up to the PM’s office for a confidential meeting, at which Shearer had asked that Key not tell anybody about it. Shearer went behind the backs of his own caucus. When Key revealed this, Robertson’s face said it all. Shearer had also held up two dead snapper in protest at the Government’s proposed recreationalfishing quota changes. It was a stupid, silly stunt. Shearer’s leadership, like the two dead snapper, was dead in the water. Now, an American-style leadership primary will be used to decide who will gain the poisoned chalice that is the Labour leadership. 40 per cent of the vote comes from Labour MPs, 40 per cent from the wider Party membership, and the final 20 per cent from the affiliated trade unions. I give you a short pros-and-cons for each of the three candidates. David Cunliffe Pros: Harvard-educated, former diplomat, highly regarded former Cabinet Minister, the wider Labour Party membership back him. Cons: Arrogant, caucus colleagues apparently hate him, sacked a whole DHB board once. Bonus: Google ‘David Cunliffe’ and ‘poetry’. Grant Robertson Pros: Formerly Helen Clark’s Deputy Chief of Staff, former diplomat, current Deputy Leader. Cons: Formerly Helen Clark’s Deputy Chief of Staff, can’t repudiate the worst of Clarkism, has never landed a hit on the Government in five years in Parliament.
ACT/John Banks Just like the beagle puppies he fought tooth and nail to protect, John Banks is a dog of even temperament and gentle disposition. As a beagle, Banksy is easily won over by others—or their
Brendan Horan The Lone Wolf (see The Wolf Pack, above).
Shane Jones Pros: Folksy manner, former Treaty negotiator, Harvardeducated, Māori and fluent in Te Reo. Cons: Can be abrasive, Labour left hate his guts, he once rented porn in a hotel on taxpayer money. Dude hasn’t heard of the internet?!? These are the three equally bad contestants for Labour’s Hunger Games. May the odds ever be in National’s favour.
CAMPUS DIGEST get amongst "the best"
You actually make me want to come to the tutorials, your intensity sets fire to my woman-loins. Hopefully you can be just as serious about me as you are about European industrialisation. Anon, xoxox.
Overheard @ Vic: Amanda Roche Overheard library, level 3 - "I used to get so mad I would just deliberately piss myself... I did it in DEKA once"Lisa Harlow Overheard in the Library: "I just really wanna snapchat him and tell him I can see his willy" Adam Price Overseen: White legs everywhere getting their first sun exposure since February. Catherine Johnston Overheard in Reli108-Lecturer: "has anyone experienced violence?" Student: "corporal punishment at school" Lecturer: "were you a naughty girl?" Alex Lee overseen at vic gym. some fkn chicken legs curling in the squat rack holding a protein shaker thinking hes gonna get big. No srsly he would probably beat me up but idc come at me bro lolol VUW Cupid II: #109 To the hottest history tutor in the world Matthew Vink,
#122 The girl with the black hair who looks like Bella from twilight in the monday/ wednesday MARK101 and MGMT101 lectures; you captivate my attention nearly every second of each lecture. Your flawless complexion and cute mannerisms really get my rocks off. Who are you!! It's killing me, it really is. Yours Eagerly, Anonymous x
Anyone have any interesting ways to get rid of my $100 library fines? Interesting as in a name of a librarian who will wipe it for free? #693 Best Blaze spots in welly central? #694 Anon please. Had the best wank on level 5 today (; p.s I'm a girl
Top Ten COMMENT TYPES ON THE CIVILIAN’S ARTICLES
#126 To the blonde guy in SPAN316 with the awesome arms... Do you need to see the vet? Cos those pythons are siiiiick! #143
10. Hey, I made that joke in a comment last week! 9. Satire is the great end for which man entered into society 8. I’m using a profusion of indelibly protracted words inappositely. 7. Ben. You, sir, are a god. Ben.
Dear Oscar Your red hair warms up the room and your voice melts my cold heart :) Come and let me set your arcade on fire. XOXO Shy Guy #148 Seeing as it looks like people are confessing their love for lecturers, here goes... Tony Ward, you are a silver fox!
6. Poor quality related joke that entirely misses the point. 5. Follow-up comment to the last, aiming for more likes. 4. Great article - if only you’d done it like this... 3. Hey, guys, this is the entire point of the article! Wow! 2. I hate John Key a lot, you guys. 1. Haha, great, let me write for you, haha. Seriously though.
OMG VUW Confessions: #682
carlo salizzo @louderthoughts
S CLOSE THURSDAY 19 SEPTEMB N O I T A N I ER NOM
FEATURES NEWS •ϟ FEATURE
making cents of student money
ϟ • FEATURES
Purchasing a year of study at university is a transaction like no other. During an intense period of parental pressure, summer heat and anxieties about the future, most of us send away some StudyLink forms and sign away the next phase of our lives to debt. Sometimes the process has to be repeated, and we suffer the Kiwiana hold-music student induction. We fiddle with our courses and sign more forms, and eventually some people in some offices somewhere do some maths, and a few months later we get a pink slip and gasp when we see the size of our accumulated debt. In bold. But what do we actually get for promising to pay back this figure in the future? You can’t account for your expanding vocabulary and critical thinking progress into $100 blocks, nor weigh up whether $50 of your fees facilitated the intellectually stimulating conversation you had with a peer or the physically stimulating interaction you had with someone at O-Week. If you don’t think you got $30,000 worth of personal development upon graduation, you can’t take it back to a shop and get a refund. Every year when you pay your fees, you give some for tuition and some for student services. And every year, they’re a little bit more than they were last time. The annual process of setting such fees is now upon us, and so begins Salient's attempts to fee-d you insights into how and why you’re going to be paying/borrowing more to study at Victoria next year. This week Salient talks to VUWSA President Rory McCourt about the Student Services Levy (SSL), which is intended to pay for services that ‘contribute to academic success and a positive student experience.’ Following the implementation of Voluntary Student Membership in 2012, the association has become reliant on funding from the SSL, and thus, reliant on the University.
than $800,000. Which services did VUWSA cut following the loss of compulsory membership fees? R: We've made tough decisions about cutting things like events, the size of Orientation, programmes like Campus Angels, and our reach to other campuses like Te Aro and Pipitea. While we've made big savings in finding efficiencies, there's no fat left to cut. For 2014, we'll be looking at the whole organisation and what needs to go to get to surplus. That might mean fewer events, welfare services and services like Student Job Search. What did the University decide it would fund through the SSL?
We've made tough decisions about cutting things like events, the size of Orientation.. We currently have contracts for Representation (Class Reps), our independent Advocacy Service and grants for Student Media (Salient), student engagement and welfare services. But it's simply not enough, and we're struggling to meet the needs of students and the University with such limited funding. How did the University decide which services it would and wouldn’t pay for? We put a proposal to University Management at the end of 2011, and again last year.
Q+ A Salient: Prior to VSM, VUWSA had an operating revenue of $2.25 million; in 2013 it’s less
Are the decisions made by faceless bureaucrats in a dark room at the top of the Hunter Building?
In 2010 [VUWSA and the University] formed a joint oversight committee for student services called ACSSL. This body recommends the rates which all students are compelled to pay. ACSSL doesn't deal so much with which services are included for funding under the levy, this is determined by Management. Management also determines the relative funding levels for each service. We've said that these important decisions need students at the table. It's tricky though, because VUWSA is now one of those services and some have said that's a conflict of interest. What informs and guides their decisions? ACSSL takes into account the views of students through the student representatives VUWSA provides, as well as the strategic goals of the University, Government targets around completion and retention, and surveys that canvass the views of students. How has a student’s experience at Vic been worse without the VUWSA services that were cut? The evidence shows that regular, engaging events, supportive welfare services and a strong sense of community on campus are all essential to building a great student experience, and helping us to achieve good academic outcomes. Undoubtedly, students have been shortchanged since 2012, still paying $650+ each but not receiving the level of service they used to pay less for. The decision not to charge a membership fee for VUWSA was one that has certainly contributed to the reduction in VUWSA’s services—in hindsight, do you think that decision was the right one? Charging a membership fee simply wouldn't work. We offer a universal service, and so we have issues with freeloading. Everyone sees the benefit of better courses through our Class Rep system, and of having a student rep around the table to ensure clubs get a fair go when it's time to dish out the funds. We can't commodify that.
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And actually, we wouldn't want to. We take great pride in being an association of students doing things for the public good and the good of all students. With your representational role being tied into the decision making around SSL recommendations, do you think it’s fair to say there’s a clear conflict of interest? I certainly think it has complicated things, and it's situations like this that we warned the Government about ahead of the introduction of VSM. Make no mistake, VUWSA is a staunch association that knows that faithfully and honestly representing students must always come first; but over time, especially at other Universities without a strong and independent student voice, we have to wonder how long they will be willing to bite the hand that feeds when it really counts. Does VUWSA have any other options for getting money to spend on things other than going to the University? We have small amounts of income from other sources, such as car parking and lockers. We also received a $150,000 donation from the VUWSA Trust in 2012 to help plug our deficit, and this year we expect a smaller $100,000 contribution. VUWSA has about a million dollars in its reserves, and since VSM it has just been eating into it with a deficit last year, and again in 2013 (about $200,000). Why aren’t you investing your reserves to help make VUWSA more financially sustainable, allowing the Association to spend more money on improving students’ experiences at Victoria? We're actually at a very difficult time for the Association. Just this year we've had to write a $100,000 cheque for a pre-committed office move. Now's not really the time to take what is relatively little money and put it into risky active investments. Instead, we've built up the VUWSA Trust over the years to achieve that goal. While we're always looking for the best return on those reserves, it is prudent to maintain them as we chart the stormy waters of VSM and University underfunding.
If you’re finding the current funding environment so restrictive, why hasn’t your Executive placed finding extra revenue sources as a priority? This is a question for the Executive. Has there been anything that VUWSA has requested funding for which hasn’t been accepted by the University? We have requested additional funding to plug
..at other Universities without a strong and independent student voice, we have to wonder how long they will be willing to bite the hand that feeds when it really counts. the significant hole in our welfare services that we currently subsidise considerably, and funding for a volunteer network. Both of these have not received funding to date. But we continue our dialogue with the University. We will, as part of this year's proposal to the University, be requesting full-funding of the services we provide, and additional funding for events, representation, supporting rep groups and societies, and outreach to non-Kelburn campuses.
do we even need more than just a lecture theatre, a babin’ tutor and a steady wifi connection to become a scholar? The student experience is actually a crucial part of not only university life generally, but also for academic success. We know that students who receive support when they need it in terms of health, counselling, tutoring, and recreation services have a much higher likelihood of successfully completing their course and degree. Even those students who turn up to gigs and join clubs are more likely to succeed as they amass a network around them that can help them out when times are tough, assignments are due or their flatmates become unbearable. While we might not use all the services everyday, they are there when we need them and they certainly add to our student experience. If you look at the actual services students receive from the Levy, there are a lot that you can find elsewhere in Wellington such as the gym and crèche. Then there are also more direct duplications of services. Student Job Search is way more helpful than CareerHub, yet the latter is funded by SSL. Why should students be funding these services, that only some of us use? Like any suite of universal services, there are some people don't use and resent paying for. VUWSA's job is to make sure the services we do have are as efficient as possible, and that their funding reflects where students want their money spent. We're working to identify inefficiencies and duplications like CareerHub doing the shortterm placements Student Job Search does for free. Or the airport pick-ups for international students who already pay monumental fees to come to Vic.
$676.00 is a lot of money to pay for a ‘student experience’, why
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IT’S SAFER TO BE AT SUMMER SCHOOL Get a head-start on Semester One 2014 by taking up to 60 credits at Summer School. Classes start 18 November 2013. MASSEY.AC.NZ/SUMMERSCHOOL OR CALL 0800 MASSEY (627 739)
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in the red In the Red: Making Sense of Five Years of Hard Labour
In one week, the New Zealand Labour Party will have a new leader. As the candidates tour the country touting their credentials to the Party faithful, pronouncing their loyalty and otherwise waving their CVs about, Salient took the opportunity to find out why one of New Zealand’s two major political parties has spent five years in the political doldrums, with no escape seemingly imminent. Ollie Neas investigates.
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By Ollie Neas The choice facing the Labour Party is a choice between three. There is David Cunliffe, the charismatic and/or smarmy Kevin Rudd–esque MP for New Lynn; popular in Auckland but purportedly despised by half the caucus. Then there is Grant Robertson, MP for Wellington Central, with roots in Helen Clark’s administration. While popular with the Labour caucus, some suggest Robertson may be too downright Wellington for the job—oh, and he’s gay. And lastly, there is Shane Jones, the nononsense list MP, noted for his metaphor-saturated oratory, but still tainted by the ‘blue movies’ scandal of 2010, in which he was found to have charged up to 50 hotel porn films to his ministerial credit card while on ministerial business. Speaking at town halls and marae at a series of 12 hustings across the country, each of the trio have sought to position themselves within a broader, distinctly ‘Labour’ story. In Levin, Robertson and Jones nominated New Zealand’s fourth Labour Prime Minister, Norman Kirk, as their inspiration. Despite passing away of a heart attack only 21 months into office in 1974, Kirk was cited for his vision of a secure and equal New Zealand in which all would have, as Robertson explained, “somewhere to work, somewhere to live, someone to love and something to hope for”. Cunliffe, however, went for the Top Dog, nominating father of the welfare state, Michael Joseph Savage, Prime Minister from 1935 to 1940, as the man who he sought to emulate. These bold declarations were to place the candidates within a proud and powerful narrative, the narrative of a proud and powerful political institution. However, anyone following New Zealand politics over the last five years could be forgiven for disbelieving that Labour was any such thing. Since John Key’s National government was elected in 2008—that’s half a decade ago, think about that—Labour has floundered. They have turned over two new leaders—first Goff, then Shearer—and have flailed hopelessly in the polls. Their first term in opposition saw their support drop to 27 per cent. Since then, it has only recently reached the level with which they lost in 2008—33 per cent. Their opposition, the governing National Party, has stayed consistently popular, currently
chugging along at around 47 per cent, and Prime Minister Key, essentially synonymous with the party he leads, particularly so. But while Key is popular, he is an increasingly wide target. The recently passed GCSB legislation provoked widespread ire. The economic windfall that was promised as justification for the selling of state assets has failed to come to fruition. Caregiving pay for parents of disabled children has been limited with a constitutionally questionable inability to review. The ability for citizens to protest at sea has been curtailed. And proposed changes to employment law pose a threat to the ability of the working class to collectively bargain with employers. A recent Fairfax poll even suggests that only 23 per cent of Kiwis actually believe what Key says. It is hard, then, to see Labour’s lack of success as being a product solely of John Key’s success. *** As David Shearer resigned as Labour leader, John Key issued a warning—as is his tendency— over talkback radio. “We’re going to have three weeks of a reality TV show,” he told RadioLIVE. “They’re a pretty deeply divided caucus. At the end, someone will emerge, they’ll tell the public ‘we’re all unified’. That’ll be nonsense. They’ll be no more unified than they were, and there’ll be another year of fighting and undermining.” This is, of course, largely lowball scare-tactic speculation, but the key message—that Labour is divided—is a message made by the candidates themselves. Upon announcing that he would seek the leadership, Robertson stated that this was “because I think I can unify our party”. Cunliffe and Jones echoed this. No political party—save, perhaps, for the Winston Peters echo chamber known as New Zealand First—are free from internal division. Indeed, robust internal debate is necessary if any political enterprise is to stay relevant. But Labour’s faction woes are far from new—the party is notorious for them. As political journalist Colin James, writing for the Otago Daily Times last week, explains, Labour is a party of six tendencies. There is “an old left, wanting the 1970s back; ageing 1970s social liberals; 1980s-type ‘identity’ politicos pushing
the special interests of women [...], gays, ethnic minorities, the disabled; the 1990s ‘third-wayers’ who tried to accommodate Labour to marketliberalism; the Maori dimension; and those groping for a way to apply Labour principles to the 2020s.” This is no revelation, but given the values Labour serves to embody, this disunity is puzzling. Labour is, and has been since its inception in 1916, New Zealand’s major party of the political left. Despite the limitations of the left–right dichotomy, being ‘left’ does mean something, as the common threads in the promises made by Robertson, Jones and Cunliffe indicate, as they spoke in town halls like that in Levin. The pledges made to tackle child poverty, reduce unemployment, bring a 50/50 gender split to the Labour caucus, and to implement a living wage for public employees, aptly captures the ideology of the left. The focus is on the combatting of oppression and inequality, worker’s rights, and the willingness of government to intervene to achieve these ends. By (some kind of) contrast, the political right— embodied in moderate form by the National Party, and more radically by ACT—places greater focus on the self-reliance of the individual and greater faith in the market, as opposed to government, to reward those who deserve it. It may seem ironic then that Labour, the party which espouses unity, solidarity and the collective, is notoriously disunited. However, Dr Jon Johansson, Senior Lecturer of Political Science and a political scientist at Victoria University, thinks that this factionalism is an inevitable trait of the left. “There is more intellectual energy on the left, which means there is more disagreement,” he explains. “The right are content to inherit their policy. They will tinker with the status quo but very rarely do they try to transform it.” David Farrar, the former National Party staffer behind the immensely popular Kiwiblog, broadly agrees—if cynically so. “Many on the left care more,” Farrar says. “They’re more passionate.” “They see a world where everywhere there is injustice and inequality and they’re mad and they want to do something about it. On the centre right—and this probably reflects that these people tend to be a bit better off with the status quo—we think these policies are probably best,
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but hey, if we’re moving in the right direction, we’re basically happy.” If this is the cause of Labour’s factionalism, then the consequence of it is the need for strong leadership—leadership of the kind that Helen Clark’s nine years in power is testament to. “A successful Labour leader like Helen Clark, all she did was suppress all those factions,” Johansson says. “What we’re seeing in the politics post-Clark is that all those factions—whether it’s the rainbow wing of the Labour party, those that are more to the right of the caucus, or those that are more to the left—have been given more space to assert themselves in the absence of control.” It was control of this kind that Goff and Shearer lacked. “Goff was a pretty strong leader of the caucus but never in charge of the Party,” Farrar recalls. “I’ve never actually seen quite such open warfare between activists and what they see as the old guard in caucus.” However, while this may be so, not every successful Labour leader has held the reins of control as tightly as Helen Clark. Indeed, this is because, until recent decades, such authoritative political management was not as essential as it is now. The changes that made this the case bring us to the core of the Labour story. *** Of the bold statements made by the leadership candidates, notable has been Grant Robertson’s promise to a crowd of 450 at Western Springs that he would “leave behind the dog-eat-dog, free-market ideology that has governed our country for too long”. “There will be no neoliberal agenda, no Third Way agenda, just one simple clear agenda. An economy based on putting people first.” This so-called ‘neoliberal’ agenda refers to a radical shift in New Zealand politics that began in 1984 under the Fourth Labour Government. Prime Minister David Lange’s government, with Roger Douglas as Finance Minister, implemented a series of radical social and economic reforms, the economic side of which became known as ‘Rogernomics’. Tariffs were lifted, the economy was deregulated, and state-owned enterprises were privatised. At the time, many saw this sudden faith in a deregulated economy as disloyalty to the core values of Labour and a betrayal of the archetypal
Labour voter. The party that was supposed to represent the worker, which existed to correct the market when it failed, was all of a sudden stepping back and letting the market take over.
decries—a 1990s-borne approach that sought to accommodate Labour values into a free-market framework—is now not so much an option, but Labour’s modus operandi.
Prime Minister David Lange resigned. Labour MP Jim Anderton left in 1989 and formed the NewLabour Party, vowing to stay true to the “real” spirit of Labour. Roger Douglas left also, but formed ACT, which is now firmly associated with the political right.
This is not without reason, as Sir Roger Douglas, the man responsible for Rogernomics, told Salient in 2012.
As the extremity of Robertson’s language is testament to, this period continues to mark a
Of course, while Labour may be out for now, now never lasts forever. Whether Labour gains office in 2014, or 2017, or 2021, the question is not if, but when and how. sore spot in the identity of the party. Indeed, statements of the kind made by Robertson are the only references made by the candidates to the 1980s. Notice, for example, the conspicuous absence of the Labour icons of the era (think Lange, Douglas and Palmer) in the rhetoric of the candidates, despite the idolisation of earlier figures like Michael Savage and Norman Kirk. You might be forgiven, however, upon considering the tenacity of Robertson’s language, for believing that the policies of the Fourth Labour Government were subsequently rejected by the party. This is not so. “It was a Labour Party that established Rogernomics,” Johansson says, “and the Clark Government operated within that space. It did not disturb the major architecture of Rogernomics.” The “Third Way ideology” that Robertson
“If you wanted to summarise what we did between ’84 and ’88, it was that we removed privilege,” Douglas said. “The Labour Party at the moment would claim that it was against working people. Well, it wasn’t. Working people were, as a result of the changes, able to own a motor car when they were too expensive before.” In other words, Rogernomics was, from Douglas’ perspective, merely a novel application of Labour values. Robertson’s rhetoric, then, is hard to read literally, but it is rhetoric that reflects an ongoing identity crisis for Labour. While the divide between Labour and National was once roughly centred around a basic economic cleavage between the class-based ideology of Labour and the free-enterprise ideology of National, the across-the-board acceptance of the ‘neoliberal paradigm’ has meant a blurring of the lines. Indeed, this is, as Johansson explains, “why there are many people on the left who are not happy with the modern Labour Party. They see them as indistinguishable from National in the sense that they both have fidelity to the neoliberal paradigm.” This has, as Dr Bryce Edwards of Otago University observed in a 2009 blog post, resulted in a narrowing of the spread of opinion on what he terms “materialist” issues—that is, issues like unemployment, inequality, or health and education. “Conflict between parties still exists,” Edwards says, “but it is not based on such sharp ideological differences.” As Johansson explains, “The dominant economic language in 2013 is exactly the same as it was when Rogernomics was first announced. The only new language has been the imported language of the environmental movement and the whole Kaupapa Māori, which has been the infusion of indigenous politics into our political language.” “You absent those two and we’re just living in this endless groundhog day.”
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As implied by Johansson, Labour has had to turn to new frontiers to set themselves apart. This explains the rise in recent elections of campaigns focussed on the environment, the Treaty of Waitangi, crime, immigration, and gender and sexuality politics. These issues are less clearly identified as left or right, meaning the lines by which a Labour leader can unify the factions, and hold the balance of power between them, are all the more difficult to navigate. The changes to the internal dynamic of the party have been significant. As Farrar explains: “Certainly as power blocs within the party, the unions have declined quite significantly. Māori, women and the rainbow sectors have become quite powerful there. You’ve seen in a pretty unfortunate way some of those tensions come out in the leadership contest, with the backlash to Grant due to his sexuality from the unions in South Auckland.” But the consequences for Labour have not only been internal. The smudging of political identity has affected Labour’s voting base. “20 years ago, 70 per cent of the country would be committed all their life to one party,” Farrar explains. “Now it’s well under 50 per cent. People like to shop around.” Johansson adds, “Labour is nowhere with men. The National Party’s party vote from men is about 55 per cent. So that’s who Labour has lost: the core chunk of blue-collar workers and older people.” In this uncertain political landscape, the Green Party have stepped into spaces previously occupied by Labour, and now poll consistently over ten per cent. “Labour is complicated by the fact that many of Labour’s supporters are actually social conservatives,” Johansson says, “Whereas the Greens don’t have that countervailing pressure on them in that space.” Farrar agrees. “The Greens have the luxury to not live out what they say,” he says. “Labour will say something nuanced, but the Greens can go quite pure. When you’re stuck in the middle, that can be quite tough. When the Greens are at ten to 15 per cent, they can’t be written off as the extreme like they were on five or six per cent.” *** The consequence of all of this is not only the necessity of strong leadership, but a leader who
can reforge Labour’s ideological identity. As Johansson explains, “if you read the mainstream media commentary, you get the idea that someone can just look prettier than John Key on camera or be a little bit more effective against him in a debate, and somehow that’s going to cover all the stains.” “Whenever you are going through a trough, you have to ask yourself first-principle questions. Tinkering doesn’t do it.”
office in 2014, or 2017, or 2021, the question is not if, but when and how. Some idea of an answer to the how should be provided by the contest for party leader. Inevitably, this decision will determine the when. The certainty with which the leadership candidates speak about the values they embody at the hustings around the country gives the impression that these underlying questions have already been answered. Whether this is the case, only next year’s election will tell.
Of course, while Labour may be out for now, now never lasts forever. Whether Labour gains
Affordable warm dry housing to rent or buy = good homes Celia Wade-BroWn
a good choice for Wellington’s future www.celiaformayor.org.nz Hear Celia speak at the Healthy Homes Forum 13:30 11th September, at The Hub Authorised by Celia Wade-Brown, 101 Wakefield St, Wellington
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electile dysfunction it's our future
On election day 2011, Sam awoke in the early afternoon, and decided to play video games with what remained of the day. This was not a first. In the suburbs around him, thousands of people ventured out into a sun-drenched Wellington, but Sam stayed put. He had enrolled to vote, yes, had gone through all the necessary forms, and knew that the election was on that day, but had decided to remain at home.
By Henry Cooke But then, if Sam had voted, it wouldn’t have made any difference. 2.2 million people voted in the 2011 election. National won 443,000 votes more than Labour did. Each non-electorate seat cost around 17,000 party votes for the Green Party. Sam lives in a very safe Labour electorate. Even if Sam was particularly interested in the electoral-system referendum that piggybacked onto the 2011 election, his vote would have had
no effect. Sam had better odds of being hit by a car on his way to the voting booth than his vote mattering in any way. Only, Sam wasn’t alone. 31 per cent of voting-age New Zealanders didn’t make the effort in 2011. That’s, as the Labour leadership contenders keep asserting, 800,000 people who didn’t attempt to have any say in who should lead the country that they live in, who should write the laws that they live by, or set the taxes that they pay. Eep.
That’s the heart of the voting paradox—it’s incredibly unlikely that your individual vote will matter, but if everyone accepts that reasoning, nobody will vote at all, which would matter a whole lot. Sam’s ballot-skipping isn’t exactly surprising. Young people are generally less likely to vote. The actual numbers are a bit murky, since the Electoral Commission doesn’t record that kind of data to respect privacy, but for 22 per cent of the non-voters surveyed just after the election, 2011 was the first time they were eligible. Of those who were eligible at the time, 62 per cent of the 2011 non-voters didn’t vote in 2008 either. All this, and the survey only asks those who actually enrolled. 18–24 year olds represent just 13 per cent of the voting-age population, but nearly half (47 per cent) of those unenrolled. Sam swings a bit left, living in Wellington and all, and doesn’t have a degree in anything—two factors that further decrease the odds of him voting. Sam claims, like two per cent of the non-voters surveyed, that he didn’t vote because he saw no meaningful difference between the parties.
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As the years tick on, we are seeing more and more Sams. To find another election with turnout as low as 2011, one has to venture into the 1800s. The last three elections are some of the worst on record, and there’s been a noted decline since the 1960s, throughout New Zealand and much of the Western world, from the ~90 per cent turnout rate in the 1950s through to the ~70 per cent of the new millenium. People vote and don’t vote for a million different reasons. It’s a huge social experiment with little control of outside factors, where a few degrees’ difference in weather could change who leads a nation of millions. But the only way to reverse the downward trend is to understand who is voting less, and why. That is, if you see low voter turnout as a problem at all. * * * As political messages go, “more people should vote” is a pretty safe bet. It wasn’t always. Abraham Lincoln was assassinated two days after promising African-Americans voting rights; 55 years later, 33 American women demanding the right to vote were imprisoned and brutally beaten over 60 days. Times have, luckily, changed. Voting in New Zealand is reasonably easy. And, if you’ve made it a frictionless process that anyone can engage in, then what else, short of forcing people to vote, can you really do? John Key trotted out the same old adage after the 2011 election, along with many others: “If you don’t vote, then you can’t complain.” The statement has a nice simplicity to it, and it certainly sounds sensible. And it would be, if it was that simple. It isn’t. Those who don’t vote are not spread evenly among the population. Certain groups are much less likely to vote, and thus less likely to influence politicians. This is why you can’t touch superannuation without an uproar but you can play with the Student Allowance all you like—the elderly vote, young people often don’t. “It is important to have as much equality in participation as possible,” explains Dr Hilde Coffé, a Senior Lecturer in Comparative Politics at Victoria, because “if there is inequality there, there is inequality in policy-making.” And, whether you would like it to or not, government policy affects each
and every one of us. Having a say in it can be pretty useful, even if you don’t buy into the democratic ideal. Turnout is more than just an ideal though: it’s a strategy. “In general, lower-class people tend to vote more left-wing,” says Coffé, “and we know that they are also less likely to go voting.” It’s hard to prove such claims completely, given the secrecy of the ballot and just how many people vote, but there is definitely supporting research. A 2012 paper in Comparative Political Studies asserts that increasing income inequality generally decreases turnout, but a strong left wing can combat this decrease. Politicians from the left agree. Jacinda Ardern, Labour’s spokesperson for Social Development, sees “a considerable chunk of the non-vote” as “people who would otherwise vote for parties like the Labour Party”. Holly Walker, the Green Party’s spokesperson for Electoral Reform, agrees, “but it’s not an absolute... the more we see this trend towards non-voting continue, the more diverse this group will be.” The trend is key. We’ve always had young people and we’ve always had impoverished people—so why are turnout rates declining so dramatically? There’s an easy response that half of you are muttering under your breath right now—apathy!—but it isn’t quite that simple. “A lot of people talk about youth apathy and voter apathy, but that framework and that way of looking at it puts all the fault on young people,” explains Walker, “where, actually, we’ve come out of 20 years of neoliberal economic reform and individualism, which has encouraged a whole generation of people to think very much in terms of ‘me’.” Atomised individuals are less likely to buy into party ideology, but that doesn’t make them less interested in politics. “Young people may not be interested in electoral politics,” asserts Coffé, but “it's all more about issues... you see it in different ways of participation.” Certainly, issue-based campaigns have been full of young people lately, particularly, Walker points out, Marriage Equality and Generation Zero. Joining a group can be “anathema for young people”. We are interested in change that we can enact straight away, not change via voting for a party that might one day get elected and might one day push through a bill we like. Thus, politics aren’t the problem—party politics are.
Sam had better odds of being hit by a car on his way to the voting booth than his vote mattering in any way. This doesn’t quite explain the whole story. Young people aren’t the only people not voting in droves, what’s everyone else’s excuse? Coffé believes competitiveness plays a part. “What I hear about in 2011 is that, ‘We all knew National were going to win!’” Indeed, eight per cent of non-voters surveyed, a sizable swath, didn’t vote because “it wouldn’t make a difference”. And you can understand this a bit—the polls were predicting a solid win for National—but if 800,000 more people had voted, the maths would look completely different, and under MMP, a whole handful of seats would become competitive. Turnout was fairly low in the 2002 election, too, where it looked certain that Labour would effortlessly beat National. Research shows competitiveness is definitely a factor, and it especially affects young people. “When elections are close, as many new voters cast ballots as ‘old’ ones,” suggests Jack Vowles in a working paper on the 2011 election, “but when elections are not close, new voters are most adversely affected.” Of course, we don’t vote in two-party elections. “The public may tend to underestimate the closeness of elections,”
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writes Vowles, “because of a focus on the two main parties and consequently less attention to coalition options.” Both Labour and National encourage this, so as to maximise their own possible share of the vote. * * * This decline isn’t going on in quiet. The less people vote, the less legitimate our Western supremacy narrative is. Our ego can’t take that kind of pain right now. But with so many possible causes—late-game polling, atomisation, income inequality, complex electoral systems, a distrust of politicians in general—and a trend that is challenging democracies all over the world, where do you even start? Then again, it isn’t always politically advantageous to encourage high turnout. American far-right Republicans are in the process of suppressing the left with voter ID laws and the like, which disproportionately discourage minorities, who generally vote left, from voting. They hide behind “combating voter fraud”. Closer to home, the National Party has no stated policy on increasing democratic participation, and never really mentions the topic. However, Minister of Justice Judith Collins is introducing a bill to Parliament which allows for online voter enrolment. Collins agrees that turnout is low, and claims that “the Government wants to encourage as many people as possible to vote,” but “not all of the factors which affect turnout can be controlled by the Government or the Electoral Commission.” Some work can be done. Collins points to the work the Electoral Commission is doing, and particularly highlights civics education as an avenue to pursue. The Government wants to encourage as many people as possible to vote,” she claims, so “ the Government will be encouraging the [Electoral] Commission to continue its public education programmes and also to work with the Ministry of Education to improve the Commission’s excellent education programmes for schools.” MMP is certainly a complex system, so perhaps greater education could reverse the trend. Then again, the United States has a rigorous civic-education curriculum, and their turnout is far worse than ours. Coffé sees civic education as
“very important,” but “ it isn’t the the magic solution... studies are mixed on its effects.” There is always the nuclear option—compulsory voting. In Australia, you are legally obliged to vote. If you refuse to, you can be fined $20, unless you have a good explanation. You can still ‘spoil’ your vote if you wish, filling it out incorrectly and thus making it unusable. Australia has an official turnout rate consistently in the 90s, surely proof that a system like this is effective.
This is why you can’t touch superannuation without an uproar but you can play with the student allowance all you like—the elderly vote, young people often don’t. But nobody is really talking about it in New Zealand. Coffé acknowledges that it would probably increase turnout, but doubts New Zealand, or many other countries, would go for it. “Australia enacted it at the beginning of the [20th] century—times are very different now.” It’s a question of personal liberties now, and the right to reject our form of democracy altogether has become sacred.
local-body elections. Local-body elections have much worse turnout than general elections, with only 41 per cent of Wellington voting last time, but they are also much more flexible, and thus make an excellent testing ground. Walker supports the changes, and thinks they will help with turnout, but not immensely. “People kind of see online voting as this panacea to turnout, and it's not true.” The onus isn’t just on the government. It’s in the best interest of parties, particularly parties on the left, to mobilise their vote. They employ a variety of methods, from simple pamphlets to telephone calls and door-knocking. Use of the telephone to elicit votes dropped in 2011, according to Vowles, yet it increases the likelihood that an individual will vote by eight per cent. Vowles’ research shows that face-to-face communication, while on the rise, had a slight negative effect on turnout, a result he blames on either sampling error or too precise targeting—if you were only talking to those who really didn’t want to vote, you were unlikely to change their mind. Precise targeting is on the rise internationally. Political parties are always working with limited resources, so the less time spent trying to convince people who will never vote for their party the better. Obama’s campaign teams have perfected this method, using gigantic amounts of publicly available data to find the exact type of voter who would probably support Obama but would probably not vote without a little prodding. It worked in 2008 and 2012, spectacularly, with minorities making up a larger portion of the vote than ever before, befuddling Republican analysts who had predicted a larger white vote. So, perhaps late next year, someone will knock on Sam’s door. They might guess, quite correctly, that he is somewhere to the left of the National Party, and attempt to win his vote for the Shane Jones/Winston Peters ticket. Only, their effort will go in vain—Sam has already decided that he will definitely be voting in 2014. If only all the other Sams would too.
Then there’s online voting. While Collins’ electoral amendment bill only allows for online enrolment in the general election, it does make room for a trail of online voting in the 2016
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Switzerland Description of voting methods/barriers: Switzerland
elect their leaders fairly normally, but any citizen can
Description of voting methods/barriers: Similar to NZ,
challenge any law and call a referendum on it, resulting
except the Prime Minister is appointed by the monarch, with
in quasi-direct democracy, where citizens are expected
the approval of the parliament to serve a four-year term.
to vote around four times a year.
Voter turnout: 76.4% in 2009.
for. You can also write in or select a candidate, or use a
Voter turnout: 49.2% (averaged) on referendums in
Interesting fact: while the King chooses the PM, he is
blank official ballot paper.
2011; 48.5% parliamentary in 2011.
not considered a citizen and so cannot vote.
Voter turnout: 84.63% in 2010.
Description of voting methods/barriers: A suffocating
Description of voting methods/barriers: Violent
Description of voting methods/barriers: Compulsory
two-party system, gerrymandering of House districts,
intimidation, many claims of fraud.
voting, with a $20 fine imposed unless a reason for not
and unlimited campaign funding via Super PACs. The
Voter turnout: 40.81% in 2008.
voting is given.
usual! Voter turnout: 57.5% in 2012 (presidential).
Bolivia Description of voting methods/barriers: Compulsory voting, with passport removal as a penalty. Voter turnout: 94.55% in 2009.
Description of voting methods/barriers: Ballot papers are distributed by each party, with their party name printed on them—you turn in the one you want to vote
Voter turnout: 93.22% in 2010.
Syria Description of voting methods/barriers: Well, which government’s elections are you voting for? Voter turnout: 95.86% in the last Presidential Referendum in 2007. Things have changed a little since then.
Iran Description of voting methods/barriers: The Guardian Council disqualifies candidates who don’t fit their particular interpretation of Islam, thousands of opposition activists, academics and journalists are imprisoned, and the unelected Ayatollah ultimately controls everything anyway; but otherwise, elections are completely free! Voter turnout: 72.77% in 2013 (presidential).
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The Right Choice By Jordan McCluskey Jordan is a member of the National Party, a final-year History student and also VUWSA Treasurer. He is very active on Twitter. I was born into the Labour Party. Not some sort of literal love child between Norman Kirk and Helen Clark, but pretty close. On my mother’s side, my nana was orphaned by the Napier Earthquake, and the election of 1935 which brought the First Labour Government to power gave her hope. My grandfather grew up reasonably wealthy, until the Great Depression ruined his family financially. The First Labour Government gave him a job on the New Zealand Railways, a career and hope for a better life. My father’s parents emigrated from Scotland in 1955. Scots are renowned for being strong supporters of the Labour Party. As for my folks, they are strong Labour supporters, despite the betrayals of Rogernomics. My mother is a civil servant, my father is a caretaker. Through hard work and clever saving, they have nearly paid off their mortgage. I never felt deprived, but I knew we were not the most well-off family in our street. We were working-class, but aspirational. Like most teenagers, I took my politics initially from my elders. Too young to vote, I spent most of 2005 trying to convince my older classmates not to vote National, because I thought Don Brash was a racist. When I did leave school at the end of Year 13, I chose to go out to work rather than go to university. I didn’t think a degree had much value. Now, nearly at the end of my first one, I can confirm that. I went out to work full-time, eventually ending up working for a government department. Over about three years, I saw things that could put most people off the virtues of big government. Public servants ignoring the people they were supposed to be helping. People so dependent on the help of the state, they didn’t know any other way to make a living. I was observing with my own eyes that when the government tried to help people,
it usually made things worse. It was a sobering confrontation between my bright-eyed left-wing enthusiasm and what government does, or does not, achieve. I was confronting the fact that the ideology I subscribed to did not work in reality. It was at this point that my internal pendulum swung from hard left, to centre left, to just plain centre. I was barely Labour anymore. I was still in denial, believing that as someone who was socially left, but economically nudging right, I could remain a Labour Party supporter.
Labour had become a party made up of narrow sectors of various one issue activists and trade unionists I finally decided to go to university at Victoria, if for no other reason than to escape my job working for the government. One of the very first things I did was get involved in Young Labour. I went to Young Labour meetings and listened to ideas that I knew would never work in application. Most of them have been tried previously in New Zealand history—an artificially high $18 minimum wage, price controls, intervention in markets, government control of industry, are some examples. I was given a form to join the Labour Party. I pinned it to my wall and stared at it. I could not bring myself to do it. The Labour Party which I was raised to believe had the best interests of all people at its heart, on closer inspection was to me a collection of sectional interests. Labour had become a party made up of narrow sectors of various one-issue activists and trade unionists. It broke my heart. In short, I was losing my religion. In 2010, I drifted away from the Labour Party,
who were on a weekly basis putting forward policies I thought were ridiculous and unworkable. Taking GST off fresh food, which would only provide work for tax accountants. Extending tax credits, which are explicitly for people who do work, to those that don’t work. Working-class people who slogged their guts out, day in day out, would not want more of their taxes going to those who did not work. Nationalising the productive parts of the economy. Discouraged by what the Labour Party had become, I did the unthinkable. I joined the National Party. If you asked your average Young Nat why you should join the National Party, the answers are fairly predictable. Go to social events where you might meet the PM. Begin your long slow climb into the corridors of power. Well, I can’t dance, and I swear too much to be a Member of Parliament. To me, it really comes down to freedom. Only in the National Party can you be a supporter of both freedom to marry who you choose (marriage equality) and freedom to associate in a union (voluntary student membership). The National Party supports economic freedom totally, and a considerable amount of members, like myself, support social freedoms. The Labour Party only supports social freedoms, and not economic freedom. The Labour Party has also retreated into its hard-left comfort zone. Which is great for firing up the base, but won’t win you votes in the centre. Helen Clark understood this. The Labour Party is no longer the party of the sensible centre. National is. Turning my back on the Labour Party was hard, and it still is for me. Some days, I feel remorse and think I could go back; then Labour announce another bad policy. Just last week, the Labour leadership contenders announced they want massive state intervention in the economy. These are the failed policies of the past, and would lead this country into economic disaster. I made the Right Choice to leave.
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Last One Left By Hilary Beattie I’m not overly politically minded: the closest I’ve ever really come to mobilisation was collecting $5 from each of my fifth-form German classmates to get a comedic birthing T-shirt printed for our awesome teacher. (The real fruits of her labour were my straight Excellences, but I doubt she’d see it that way.) In a liberating and altogether new experience for both me and the reader, let me try and explain to you (read: justify to myself) how I went from being ignorant and identifying as rightwing to just being ignorant. Feel free to eviscerate it—I don’t need the approval. I’m fine as I am. With average-to-poor cuticles, three-quarters of a Commerce degree, and a GSOH. Onward. As a privileged kid—if you must know, the only time I ever had to wait my turn was when I got sick at night and had to go down to the After Hours—I was vaguely aware that I had it pretty good. All I had to do was not ask questions, quietly read the latest Alex Rider book in a corner, and hope Mum didn’t ask me to empty the dishwasher. I didn’t think about ‘the left’ or ‘the right’ or ‘the economy’ or ‘workers’ rights’ or ‘social justice’ or the ever-present hegemon that is ‘agribusiness’. Politics first smacked me in the face one day driving down Jervois Quay, when Mum said: “Jim Bolger’s in the car behind us.” He had flags on his car. He waved. It was awesome. The point is, my childhood was the most self-centred thing since hula hooping. Governments came and went and were criticised regardless, so I figured, “surely one cannot be more wrong than the other. I guess at least they’re giving each other turns. I don’t have time to engage with this, I’m too busy trying to get all the other Year 4s at school to help get my Swearing Club off the bloody fucking ground.”* By the time I arrived at my uppity private girls’ secondary school (UPGSS), I had learned that my dad used to work in the office of a Labour Minister of Finance. These would have been pretty subversive credentials at said UPGSS had the Minister in
question not been Roger “one degree of Bacon” Douglas. I had no trouble making friends, although a few people did ask me why Douglas didn’t go further. At this stage, I had emerged from (1) total self-immersion to (2) awareness that the world was a fairly awful place and people were all just trying to navigate their own tragic courses with minimal damage. But my bottom line for national politics remained the economy. Economics was easier for me to understand than those innumerable social realities to which I’d had little exposure and could not, with my rose-tinted affluence-glasses™ on and biologically immature empathy glands,** really bring myself to consider. We need to grow, guys! Surely it trickles down. Economics is science! Right? Of course, feel free to take a purely economic focus when you’re considering how the country should be run. Perhaps your job—or, as is more likely, your penchant for speculative investment on Waiheke Island—hangs in the balance. However, as one would expect from the series of clichés that is my life, this ‘foundation’ of mine was eventually cracked by the Aslan figure of university.*** It’s easy to see why universities used to be hotbeds for political mobilisation and subtle government subversion. It’s also easy to see why now they’re sort of just hotbeds for movie-sharing on hostel internet. For me personally, exposure to VicLabour and free copies of that last bastion of sedition The Dominion Post, combined with the expectation that I fuck around for 70 per cent of the time, was always going to end in… moviesharing on hostel internet, if I’m honest. Over time, though, I became less and less convinced by the defensibility of the financial bottom line that had theretofore led me toward economic liberalism. At one point, I thought, “Sure, the left sound better out loud, their views are nicer to hear—they're just not that realistic.” REALISTIC?! THE IDEA ISN'T TO BE REALISTIC! Not everything needs to be coloured by some bogus filter of mine that asks whether it would decrease the budget deficit. Or
whatever's being advocated down in Thorndon at the moment. Aren't they trying to provide misguided outcomes for a wide variety of New Zealanders while subtly eroding democratic freedoms? No? Could've fooled me. The trouble is, I’m now even less able to commit to any one standpoint. I know it’s not all about the numbers. I know it’s about the people. I know that. How upsetting, then, that I distrust all rhetoric and enjoy the double-black-diamond banter of garden-variety libertarians. Just leave me be. Relax, I’ll vote Labour. Being politically uninformed, as I very obviously remain, is not the same thing as being politically dim. The former sees you unable to expand on why you think Hekia’d have a better time if she actually followed the advice the Ministry gave her; the latter sees you writing History essays in a classroom at lunch when you become persona non grata by asking to your leavers’ ball a guy that a more popular girl had been planning on taking. (Maybe all the others were in the common room talking about education policy. I’ll never know.) These mountains are not unconquerable. But I need to climb both of them. It’ll be hard not to relapse into my old ways with an NBR subscription and a pole-vault. Until then, don’t let me get away with trivialising anything. The next time I see you and ask you whether you’d fuck, marry or kill Cunliffe, Robertson or Jones, say: “STOP SKIRTING THE ISSUES, MANIC SHREW!" Actually, no, that is a bad example. Let me get away with trivialising that. *My first and only foray into leadership. It turns out power’s only fun where the structure already exists and all you have to do is cling to it. ** I am aware that people do not have glands that secrete empathy. But, as with flying foxes instead of state highways, wouldn’t it be convenient?! ***Or, more accurately, a guy I met at a party once who had hair like Aslan and gave me some gin.
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domestic politics By Patrick Hunn
If you’re intent on pursuing a political career, forget joining a youth party: negotiating life with other people should be enough to dissuade you if you’re in any way sane. US President Barack Obama’s inaugural address is often woefully misunderstood. People erroneously believe that he was speaking about the State of America and Its Hopes For The Future. What he really meant to say was that Flatting Can Be A Really Quite Painful Experience and that All The Decisions You Make Are Wrong. What he actually intended when he said that, “On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord,” was really that he’d spoken to Sophie and she says that when she brings her boyfriend back home she’ll try and be quiet because God
knows her headboard is loud as tits. And when he stated that, “On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics,” he was referring to Matt, who is a total fucking tool and is a prime example of exactly why legal euthanasia is necessary because he absolutely did eat the Gouda that my mum gave me, but, you know, I don’t hold grudges. So, if you’re going to go flatting for the first time next year, let Obama’s words guide you through the labyrinthine maze of emotions that is living with other people.
HOUSING Some people manage to wrangle themselves a sunny townhouse with a conservatory, a fromagerie, an artesian well in a charming garden, and a well-mannered scullery maid for $100 a week. These people are either mafia children or witches. The most salient advice here is probably to start looking early, or something, but that isn’t all that helpful. Instead, it is probably best to try to objectively assess your circumstances. How desperately do I need to find somewhere to live? How picky can I afford to be? Too often are 12-month contracts signed for the flat equivalent of Miss Trunchbull’s Chokey in moments of panic. If it’s your first time, however, you should probably know that you won’t really know what you like until you’ve been there for a while.
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Coincidentally, Hortensia’s description of the Chokey in the Matilda film as “a very tall but very narrow cupboard. The floor is only ten inches square so you can't sit down or squat in it. You have to stand. And three of the walls are made of cement with bits of broken glass sticking out all over,” is a reasonably accurate description of some apartments in the central city.
look makes for a pretty slick flat-warming, but it probably isn’t worth it if the kitchen you’re sharing with six other people is the size of a bathtub.
be endearing). Then again, moving in with complete strangers might see you turned into a wild-eyed misanthrope. If there’s something that’s going to really get you down, it’ll be the people you live with. Joanna Tennant, a counsellor at Victoria’s Student Counselling Service, says that both options can have repercussions for your state of mind. People who don’t have anywhere else to go and end up “... flatting with ‘randoms’,” might find that it “can be really lonely if they don’t get to know the flatmates or if they don’t gel as a unit. There are flats where that happens and it’s just like being in a boarding house.”
This little dictator erected a large sign that faced the front door that began, rather sweetly, with “DEAR FILTHY PIGS.”
That’s not to say that there aren’t a thousand things you can try to avoid. Some flats are akin to a Siberian apartment complex on the outer edges of the Irkutsk Oblast. Older New Zealand homes are notoriously cold, and, because of the competition to find low-rent housing, there isn’t an enormous incentive for landlords to make substantial improvements. There are government-run programs designed to subsidise the installation of insulation, although this is dependent on your landlord, and the funds for these schemes are predicted to run out this month anyway, according to the Energy Efficiency and Cooperation Authority.
There are two possible outcomes if you find yourself living in a cold, wet coffin. Your rancour towards the world at large might be so greatly increased after the 17th demoulding of your closet that you might lash out at anyone unfortunate enough to cross your path. You might resent the person in the bedroom next to you because of the extra 15 minutes of sunlight a day afforded them by their slightly larger window. As a result, you may find yourself looking up affordable assassination services on the internet in the early hours of the morning. Or, you might find that you band together in the face of your unfortunate circumstances. Huddling around the bar heater that you allow yourself to turn on for an hour a night becomes a time of camaraderie and bonding. Or, you know, maybe that’s a bit hopeful. Either way, it’s something to think about it. If you’ve only ever lived at home or in a hall of residence it might behove you to take a long view. Sure, the exposed-brick and raw concrete
When it comes to actually securing a place, there isn’t necessarily a right way to go about it. Some treat flat-hunting a bit like electioneering. Every landlord needs to be impressed by your genteel cosmopolitan bearing. Your time as a dish-hand suddenly qualifies you as a “young professional”. References for previous landlords might be demanded, which, if you’ve never flatted before, might result in you running on a sort of Mobiusstrip treadmill to nowhere. But the golden rule, as obvious as it sounds, is to not sign on to anything without actually seeing the place.
DIPLOMACY If there’s a rule when it comes to choosing flatmates, it is this: you’ve made the wrong one. The optimistically arranged flock of friends who are just sooo excited to spend a year together being young and exciting in Mount Cook are often the ones that dissolve into unabated misery by the time July rolls around. Coincidentally, these are the people who will have chosen a cute little name for their flat within five minutes of signing the tenancy agreement (and I have visited far too many places called The Burrow for this to
And, for most people, isolation isn’t that great—“I think people shrink into themselves if they don’t have company and people who care about them,” says Tennant. There isn’t a right or a wrong way to go about it, and if you’ve only ever lived in a non-flatting situation, it might be hard to tell if what you think you might like is the same as what you will actually turn out to like in the end. One student tells of one flatmate, seemingly out of nowhere, lighting a bonfire and burning another flatmate’s blender on it. It was not a course of events that could have been anticipated. People can be very surprising, and, as Tennant points out, “When people are in a really good, happy flatting situation it makes a big difference to your mental health.”
FAMINE MITIGATION If you find yourself halfway through the year dining nightly on a gelatinous ziggurat of instant noodles, you have made a mistake. Whether you’d prefer to subsist on a communal vat of socialist
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dhal or a solitary serving of meatloaf shaped like Milton Friedman’s head for one, you’re better off engaging your flatties in robust discussion about the what and how of feeding yourselves. Group cooking can end up in you all fighting over dry plates of sadness nachos with alarming regularity if it’s the only thing one member of the household can cook. Conversely, cooking for yourself every night can be a little bit draining, especially if you’re a busy person, and you might spend whole evenings gorging on plain water crackers. If you’re going to engage in laissez-faire cooking, that’s cool. If, however, you set something up, try to stick to it, or people will end up upset.
Tennant makes the point that those that “move in with friends”, only to find that “it doesn’t work because they find out that their friends do stuff that they didn’t know about,” she could be referring to any number of unpleasant surprises. At the fore of these, however, is always going to be cleaning. People can be pretty revolting in a way that you can’t really know until you are exposed to it in a domestic context.
FISCAL POLICY Some flats are the essential equivalent of a country embattled by the global financial crisis— reliant on stimulus packages (from Ma and Pa), and generally prone to joblessness and rioting. Bills can bring out the worst in people. It doesn’t take long for people to become annoyed with each other at the charges incurred by a flatmate’s all-night Netflix session.
Bonds are a tricky thing, and depending on your landlord, you might get all or none of it back (“The carpets needed cleaning and it cost
Landlords are, as far as I’m concerned, one of two things. Either they are domineering autocrats to whom you must kowtow on everything, or they are just pretty reasonable people. That’s not a varied assessment of things, sure, but it’s often a prescient one. The thing to remember is that you can ask for stuff. Instead of secretly trying to sublet your room over the summer, many landlords will agree to cut your lease short if you ask well in advance. This is generally easier in instances when the landlord knows the room or flat will be easy to lease out, so it may or may not work. If an appliance breaks, call the landlord and ask them to fix it. If, at any point, you aren’t getting what you paid for, complain. People have died for your right to complain. Take them to the International Court of Human Rights! Or, if that isn’t practical, there’s the decidedly less exciting Tenancy Tribunal. You can even lodge an application online at dbh.govt.nz/TenancyTribunal. You can also speak to someone at the Department of Building and Housing if talks between you and the landlord break down.
Some treat flat-hunting a bit like electioneering. Every landlord needs to be impressed by your genteel cosmopolitan bearing. Your time as a dish-hand suddenly qualifies you as a “young professional”.
Set up a roster. If you shirk your responsibilities and people start talking to you like you’ve committed a
NEGOTIATING WITH DICTATORS
Appointing a finance minister is generally a good idea. Having one sensible, reliable person (or someone as close to this ideal as possible) in charge of your accounts keeps things simple and to the point.
The results of this can result in the most absurdly flamboyant behaviour. One student reports living for some time under the thumb of the flatting-equivalent of the al-Assad regime. This little dictator erected a large sign that faced the front door that began, rather sweetly, with “DEAR FILTHY PIGS.” She then proceeded, in Bashir’s now trademark style, to stoically refuse to acknowledge the sign’s existence.
hate crime, you have only yourself to blame.
$2500!”) If you feel like you’ve been cheated out of anything, don’t take it quietly. And pay your damn rent on time.
If you ever need to talk to anyone about any of these things, then hit the Victoria Student Counselling Service up. In particular, the Quick Questions service sets you up with a duty counsellor who is there to provide both advice and act as a sounding board.
But yeah. Maybe you’d like a feelgood conclusion that promises that everything will be okay. In the interests of truthfulness, however, I’ll simply say that much like politics, flatting is fraught with potential crumminess, and that if you can avoid at least some of it you’ll probably have a good year. Probably.
#NZQT bingo Tune in to Parliament TV or better yet—head down to Parliament—and play a round of Question Time Bingo every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 2 pm when Parliament is sitting.
The Prime Minister confirms that he does have confidence in his ministers
Hone Harawira is absent
An answer cannot be heard over uproar from the members
Someone shouts something from the public gallery
The Speaker acknowledges that he made a mistake
The Speaker rules that a point of order is not actually a point of order
A Minister stands by their statement
Trevor Mallard quotes from the Standing Orders and/ or Speaker’s Rulings
Someone queries whether an insult is Parliamentary language
Peter Dunne wears a bow tie
Camera catches an MP tweeting/ texting
A Green MP holds up a poster
Winston is asked to leave the House
Somebody holding up a dead animal (bonus points for Snapper)
NZ First asks for a referendum
Steven Joyce answers someone else’s question
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Which Labour leader hopeful are you? By Penny Gault
Would you prefer to be the captain of a losing team rather than a member of a winning team? NO
Would you promote growing the pie for all New Zealanders above eating it all yourself?
Of all your attributes, is diplomacy one of them?
Should you be judged on your ability to bring the party together?
Does your success depend on mastering the ABCs?
Will your leadership oblige Labour MPs to become genuine leftists? YES
Are past indiscretions handy disguises for any other personal weaknesses?
Do you pitch your campaign as one of unity, to avoid potentially controversial identity politics?
You speak the language of the people and you’re more popular with the people, who didn’t vote. Which isn’t going to be much help. Things were going surprisingly well for you until you suggested Women’s Weekly readers aren’t feminists. Then there’s the porn. You admit you aren’t great with “political correctness”, so perhaps this isn’t the job for you. But did you ever really intend to win?
You’re a pretty smart guy. Hey, you even went to Harvard. This may be a problem for you. Yeah, you’re the most qualified and you’d probably do a great job, but the people here in New Zealand have shown an affinity for dickheads that remind us of drunk Uncle Mike. Cuddle some dogs or fall in a puddle. Less smart stuff.
While you offer a new generation of leadership, you have the power to really unify the party with hugs, rainbows, and a hand from Patrick Gower and other Wellington cronies. Your sturdy stance in the middle of the road and your jolly disposition make you the people’s choice. If you don’t win, it’s only because you’re gay.
man ban, no thank you ma'am
By Julia Wells New Zealanders are pretty self-satisfied as a nation. Not about everything: we all know we're not really clean and green; that the WELLYWOOD sign isn't ironically uncool, it's just uncool, and that no matter how much we try, to the rest of the world, we sound like Australians. We do pride ourselves on one thing, however: as the first country to give women the vote, New Zealand sees itself as a nation of equality and progressiveness. What we ignore, however, is that even after MMP, the highest percentage of female representation in Parliament has been 35 per cent. The majority of politicians who appear on the news are men. New Zealand politics has a women problem. These issues were brought into the steely, misogynist eye of New Zealand a few months ago, with a Labour policy proposal. I refer, of course, to the “man ban”, as the proposals were dubbed by our beloved media. I'm not going to rage about the public response, because then I'd have to read Stuff comments about a women's issue, and ain't no one deserve that. Instead, I want to talk about the “man ban” proposals themselves: why they're a bad idea, and why they miss the point. So, what did Labour actually propose?* In New Zealand’s political-discourse sphere (i.e. Twitter), it's often hard to pinpoint details. The policy Labour was suggesting was twofold. First of all, caucus had to be at least 45-per-cent women by 2014, increasing to at least 50 per cent by 2017. Secondly, local electorates could request that only women be put forward as potential Labour electorate candidates. The first part to consider is the proposed electorate-selection changes. On the surface, this sounds like a semi-reasonable solution to a semi-existent problem. Although women make up a fairly decent proportion of the Labour caucus (41 per
cent), they are underrepresented (although not spectacularly so) in electorate seats (eight of 22). Therefore, you could think that having only women standing would do something to fix this. Then you're like, “Wait a minute. That's absolutely mad.” As is so often the case, the devil of this policy is in the detail. If local electorates are sexist to such a degree that they won't select female candidates, then it seems deeply unlikely that they'll ask for this restriction. If the problem is that the female candidates aren't good enough to win the selection, then there is obviously a separate problem, requiring greater mentoring and training of female hopefuls. If the voters of the electorate are that rampantly sexist, then a female candidate is unlikely to be elected anyway. And wouldn't it suck to be a female candidate selected under that system? Having every grumpy old man (and every hostile blogger or opposing candidate) you encounter pointing out you only got there because they banned the men; having it systematically implied that you were inferior, and couldn't make it on your own merits. Thanks, but I'd pass. Which brings us to the quota side of the policy. Quotas are a classically difficult issue. For me, it is a balancing act. Are you going to produce such an increase in women's participation that it is worth the negative implications created by quotas— that they couldn't get there on their own; that they displaced other, better candidates? In this balancing act, the “man ban” policy comes out firmly on the negative side. Because, at least for left-wing parties, the problem isn't mainly a bums-on-seats one. Labour already has 41 per cent of its MPs as women, which is really pretty good. It's female invisibility on the left that really annoys me. In the current Labour Party hunger-games leadership negotiations, there isn't a single viable female contestant. Aside from Ardern, when Labour talks to the
media, the voices are overwhelmingly male. The Greens do somewhat better, with more women than men, and a carefully gender-split co-leadership. When you look closer, however, the rosy picture fades. In the portfolios held by the different MPs, gender stereotypes are as striking as a blue-lit monument for the royal baby. Russel Norman plays it tough and talks about finance, Metiria Turei talks about social issues—housing and children. Cute. The same continues through the list. Men take tourism, commerce, sport, defence and foreign affairs; women (with a few exceptions, especially Genter's transport portfolio) take food, arts, children, aid, human rights and education. Seeing a pattern? Which is why the Labour “man ban” was far from promising earth-shattering change. I won't be mourning its passing. Instead of looking for another ingenious way to lift statistics by a few percentage points, I think it's time for some soul-searching from any party committed to equality. Because having an extra two women on the back benches won't make a difference, it's having another female finance minister that will. Instigating a controversial “man ban” policy creates hostility towards women candidates while achieving very little, and distracts attention from the more important problem. Last election, John Key notoriously stymied Phil Goff, demanding: “Show me the money”. I've got a similar call. Don't just have women on your benches, but show us them. *Or planned to propose. In their ‘mishandleeverything-conceivably-possible’ school of political management, they succeeded in having the proposals leaked, being attacked on them, losing lots of support, then backing down. Rest in peace, David Shearer. I'll miss the fish. 'Weekly Rant' is a space for one-off opinion pieces. Want to write your own? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org. nz to run riot.
of dogs and cats
Playing the Field
By Caitlin Craigie
By Matthew Ellison
The infamous black-and-white cat now has more housing at the bottom of Mount St than any Vic student ever has managed to muster, Googling ‘Garfield’ brings up the cat before the US president of the same name, and Will and Kate’s family photograph was not complete without their two dogs. In honour of our four-legged pals, this week’s Mad Science scratches the surface on what the research has to say about our relationship with Chairman Meow and Bark Simpson.
At the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, there were 21 athletes who identified as gay or lesbian, plus another two at the Paralympics. There would have been more, but softball is no longer considered an Olympic sport (this is not a joke). There were 12,602 athletes competing in the games, making the proportion of openly queer athletes only 0.17 per cent. The supercute Blake Skjellerup, a speed skater, is New Zealand’s only current queer Olympian, and will likely soon be the first gay man to compete in the Winter Olympics while openly so.
Let’s start with the infamous battle between cat- and dog-lovers, and what it means to be either. Cat-astrophic research by the University of Texas in Austin shows a difference in psychology between the two groups, with dog-lovers found to be about 15 per cent more extroverted and 13 per cent more agreeable, both of which are associated with social orientation. In addition, dog people were 11 per cent more conscientious than cat people. This trait shows a tendency to show self-discipline, to complete tasks, and aim for achievement (a.k.a. the perfect cocktail for university success). In a less than purrfect comparison, cat-lovers were found to be 12 per cent more neurotic, but on a more pawsitive note were 11 per cent more open to art, emotion, adventure, unusual ideas, imagination, and variety of experience. A Ball State University study found that cat-owners saw themselves as more independent, while dog-owners described themselves as being friendlier. On a more Sirius note, Schnauzer chance to understand what makes an animal-lover. University of Chicago research studied 1000 twins, some identical (sharing 100 per cent of their genes) and others fraternal (sharing 50 per cent of their genes). They found that the identical twins had more similar attitudes to pets than the fraternal twins, suggesting that animal-loving has an element of heritability. The team’s leader, Dr Kristen Jacobson, concluded that about 35 per cent of the differences in whether participants lavished attention on their pets was inherited. The same study found that the environment people grew up in had virtually no influence on the frequency at which they played with pets. The final piece of research to get your claws into is University of Ohio work that shows pet-owners have greater self-esteem, are more physically fit and less lonely than non-owners. Now let’s meowta here and into the nearest RSPCA, I’m feline like a new friend.
There is certainly a strong association between organised sports and homophobia, not just on the field, but among fans too—if you’ve ever been in town for the Sevens you’ll know what I mean. I have no doubt that the homophobic reputation of team sports acts as a barrier for queer people, and the tiny, tiny number of people who come out while playing pro sports indicates that it’s not an easy environment to be in as an openly queer person. There has never been an NFL or Division I College Football player who has been out while he’s been playing, but six NFL players have come out after retiring. Only one NBA player, Jason Collins, has come out while playing. Gender plays a significant role, with 18 of the 21 Olympians mentioned above being women (adorably, two of them, hockey players, are a couple and have announced their engagement). There is homophobia in women’s sport, but it’s worse in men’s sports, and possibly the lower media exposure of women’s sport puts less pressure on players to toe the sexuality line. Louisa Wall gets an honourable mention for being an openly queer woman representing NZ in the Olympics (as a Black Fern), as well as a Silver Fern! The traditionally queerphobic environment of mainstream team sports has fostered the development of queer sports groups like Different Strokes Wellington (a queer swim group), and the NZ Falcons, NZ’s queer men’s rugby team, not to mention the AsiaPacific Outgames, which were held in Wellington in 2011, and these safer (though still male, cis-dominated) spaces are a positive step. Progress is being made through fledgling positive action from large organisations like the AFL, FA, and ARU, but there’s still so much more they could be doing, and it’s frustrating that this only makes news when male sportspeople come out. In the meantime, prominent sportspeople coming out makes a huge difference, and it’s encouraging to see straight allies like David Pocock, an outspoken and well-informed rugby-union player in Australia.
Things That Go Bump In The Night with Lux Lisbon & Seymour Butts
There are a ton of sex-negative messages associated with female masturbation, and so it is no surprise that a lot of women are uncomfortable talking about getting themselves off, and that many pretend they have no interest in doing so at all. Spending some time becoming your own best friend with benefits doesn’t make you nasty, or slutty, or even weird; in fact, it may reduce stress levels, help you relax, and improve your sex life by teaching you a few things about what gets you going. The female clitoris has 8000 nerve endings (that’s twice as many as a penis; crammed into that tiny, easy-access button), so this seems like the obvious place to start. The clitoris will be sensitive to varied pressure, speeds and textures, but if you’re unsure, the best way to start is soft and rhythmic. For some women, a finger may be enough here, whereas others may enjoy the added stimulation of a vibrator (or something similar) for external stimulation and/or penetration. Don’t forget the area around the clitoris, because this also contains a motherload of nerve endings; some women may also find a touch of anal stimulation improves their self-loving time. We have all heard about this mysterious G-Spot; it may be an excellent idea to hunt it down for ultimate you-time. It is a beanshaped spot which is hidden somewhere between 2.5 and 7.5 cm up the front of the vaginal wall. It has been likened to the female prostate, and stimulation has been linked to female ejaculation. A useful tip for finding it is to use your index finger in a ‘come here’–type motion along the front wall of your vagina. As we all know, what is going on in your head plays a huge part in sexual
stimulation. So you may need to make an effort to relax, maybe in bed or a hot bath, in order to get your mind in the zone. It may help to let your mind wander and dream up some sexy scenario, or save yourself the work and read or watch something that turns you on.
early, dim the lights, and get down to business. I’ll assume you’re well-acquainted with what porn you enjoy, though I encourage you to push the envelope a little—some of my best-quality wanks have been on an unusual(/increasingly usual) bender through fetish porn.
At the end of the day, it is all about trial and error, and experimenting with what works and what doesn’t work. And whatever you do, don’t feel guilty about something that feels so right.
Treat yourself to some lube, play with your balls, experiment a bit with grips, rhythms, the hand you use, take your time, play with your nipples, etc. Pay attention to your entire apparatus—the goal isn’t to come in the next ten minutes, but to get to know your junk a little better and have a huge, toecurling orgasm at the end of it.
Lux you long time, xx
You’re a wanker, but you could be a better one. Today, students, we’re going to talk about you, your dick, and your prostate. If you have a penis, you’ve probably got a fair bit of experience making it feel good. Especially if you’ve got a foreskin (where lube is more of a bonus than a necessity), plain wanking isn’t, so to speak, all that hard. Grasp in fist, move up and down, continue until you come. And sometimes that’s all you want, right? You’ve got 20 minutes before you need to leave for work and you know you’re going to be writing about wanking this evening (to use an example from my day today), so you browse through your hard drive, or Tumblr, or whatever site(s) you use, spend 85 per cent of the time finding the right scene, then jump around until you get to the right place, then rub one out quickly. Other times though, you deserve something a little more special. Set aside an evening, tell your flatmates you’re going to sleep
Butt now onto the main reason we’re here: prostates. I am aware that butt stuff isn’t for everyone, and this doesn’t have to correlate with sexuality at all—there are plenty of queer men who don’t enjoy bum fun (known as tops), and plenty of straight men who really get off on a finger/dildo/strap-on/ fist up there. You’ll never know unless you try, and a wank by yourself is the perfect opportunity. Use lube, don’t have sharp nails, take a dump beforehand. Find your prostate (just behind your bladder, about 2 inches into your butt), rub it gently. Use two fingers. Use a toy. Use several toys! (I have written about this before.) Leave your dick alone for a bit, and just enjoy this weird bundle of nerves in your arse. Overall advice: experiment heaps! Wanking is healthy (good for your sperm count, clears your sinuses, makes you happier, gets rid of headaches), so go forth and jack it. Seymour
Lux and Seymour are our in-house sexperts. If you've got any questions about all things
If you have issues or concerns that you wish to discuss privately and confidentially with
love and lust, or a topic you want them to cover, go right ahead and ask anonymously
a professional, rather than Lux and Seymour, or Hector and Janet, Student Counselling
at ask.fm/LuxandSeymour. For everything else, there's Hector and Janet—our resident
Service can provide a safe place to explore such aspects of your life. The service is free
advice columnists. Contact them anonymously at ask.fm/FixingYourLife
Phone: (04) 463 5310 Email: email@example.com.Visit: Mauri Ora, Level 1, Student Union Building.
our Life Fixing Y[BECAUSE OURS ARE WRITTEN OFF]
Hi guys, I have a very close female friend (i’m a straight male). a lot of people seem to think that we are romantically linked, but we really aren’t. i know it’s kind of an ultimate first world problem but is there anything i can do about this? what if other girls that i want to date steer clear of me because they think i’m taken? help! Finn
HECTOR Hi Finn, Look, you’re not wrong about it being a “first world problem”. There are other things that you’re being weird about too. But we’ll get to that later, when this column takes its inevitable weekly turn into paternalism. In terms of your actual issue: hey, it’s not uncommon at all. I mean, most straight guys who are decent enough people to be friends with straight girls (or the galaxy of other pairings, but hey I’m on a word count here) will inevitably come up against acquaintances who get the wrong idea. Short answer: there’s not a lot you can do about it. I mean, you could go around and loudly exclaim in public that you’re not dating to anyone within earshot, but if anything that’s only going to arouse suspicion. Hey, use all the other, more subtle, social cues, like not holding hands or having sexual intercourse with that person, or setting your Facebook relationship status to ‘single’. This is the age of social research, after all.
But really, haven’t we kind of reached a point where it’s not a big deal? I’d say that 80 per cent of the people who ask you about it are just curious, and they really don’t care one way or the other. It’s a classic part of the human condition that we think other people are thinking about us all the time, when really they’re thinking about themselves. This is the age of selfabsorption, after all. As for the “other girls” that might be put off—hey, they might be. But is that really a concern? I mean, if this third party is really interested, it shouldn’t be all that difficult for them to work out that it’s purely platonic. And if it’s just a passing fancy, or a latenight romance, why would they ever have enough data points to get the wrong idea? If it’s really inconveniencing you, there’s always the option of never talking to her again. Or you could make some other female friends—that way, if people get confused, they’ll just assume they’re your harem and leave it at that. I guess what I’m saying is, I get that this is a mild bother. Hey, we’ve all been there! But I don’t see why it’s such a big deal. So, people get the wrong idea. That’ll happen. But on the other hand—congratulations, you have a female friend! Fuck yeah! Let me know if you end up banging, Hector
JANET Hi Finn, It's a bit narrow to categorise friendships as being with people who theoretically you
should be attracted to, or whatever. I see what you mean, though—I just had to set out that I was liberal. I think you need to break all contact with this female friend of yours. How are you ever going to enter into a series of uncomfortable one-night stands and emotionally unsatisfying short-term liaisons if you're too busy having a genuinely good time being close with someone that you aren't sleeping with? Exactly. As Hector says, people are pretty selfinvolved. If you say people "reckon you're romantically linked", chances are what's actually happened is that your flatmates have ribbed you about her once or twice and she's shouted you food occasionally, such that the people at Burger Fuel think you're together. Consider the possibility that you're overreacting. Sometimes, everyone thinks you're interested in someone that you're not. It'd be worse if she also thought you were keen on her. As long as the story is the same coming from both of you, you're fine. I don’t believe you that others will 'steer clear'—everyone loves a challenge. If you're interested in people who can't be bothered undertaking any detective work to find out exactly whether you're single or not, it sounds like you don't need to bother, because they're not interested. But look, if you're that worried, get a T-shirt made. Just remember, everybody here wants you. Good luck, Finn. Janet.
LIFESTYLES OF THE POOR & THE STUDIOUS a Nigell t den Lawstu
Want One? Vegetarian wontons with honey soy dipping sauce By Eve Kennedy In my flat, we buy our weekly necessities from the vege market and the supermarket, and then spend the leftovers on lavish goods like fancy cheeses or preserves. One week, we'd got all our regulars and had $6 left to spend, so we wandered Moore Wilson’s pondering over macarons and halloumi before deciding on wonton wrappers. Homemade wontons are surprisingly easy, and a great entrée for an Asian-fusion dinner; take Chow as your inspiration. I served mine as hors d'œuvres alongside homemade flat breads with dips and fresh rice-paper rolls with satay sauce, then mains of pad thai tofu and gado-gado. Makes 30(ish) wontons, wrappers avaliable at Asian supermarkets. Sauce: 1 onion, diced 1 teaspoon each of minced garlic and ginger lemongrass
1 chilli 2 tablespoons honey ¼ cup soy sauce 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Fry the onion with the seasonings. Add the honey, soy and lemon juice and cook on a med–high heat until all combined and just starting to bubble. If the sauce is too thick, thin it out with some water. Serve the wontons with the dipping sauce, or sweet chilli sauce if you prefer. They make a tasty entrée for a dinner party.
Filling: 1 packet tofu 12-15 mushrooms 1 onion, diced (leek or red onion will suffice too) 1/3 stalk of lemongrass (optional, but this aromatic beauty can be found cheap at the Sunday farmers' market) 3 garlic cloves, minced 2 red chillies
3 tablespoons soy sauce 1 tablespoon sesame oil 1 teaspoon minced ginger salt and pepper To stretch the mixture further, you could also try adding: Grated carrot Shredded cabbage Spring onion Mince Shredded bok choi
Fry the onion, sliced mushrooms, garlic, ginger, and chilli in a frying pan. Chop the tofu into small cubes, add to the pan, stirring well to ensure it doesn't burn. Add the soy sauce and sesame oil. Grate the lemongrass stalk into the mix. Cook at a medium heat for 5–7 minutes, or until all of the mixture has absorbed the seasonings and is cooked through. If you're using any of the optional ingredients, ensure they are cooked through before taking off the heat—cabbage and bok choi may take longer than that to cook. Put a small dollop of mixture into the middle of the wonton wrapper. Bring the corners up and roll the wrapper around the mixture so it resembles a little ball (of mixture) with a big tail on the end, kind of like a meteor! Experiment with the wonton wrapping though; my flatmate turned one into a bird—he's a cool guy. Fry the wontons in batches in about 3 inches of oil in a frying pan, at high heat. Turn them with tongs until golden and crispy, about 90 seconds. Don't crowd the pan: you'll a) stress yourself out and b) get the wontons stuck together. Keep them warm in the oven.
Four Ways With: Cheap Wine 1. Make more wine
Health tip # 18
AN APPLE A DAY
Is your whānau expecting a new baby or do you care for infants? If so it is important to check when you last had a pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine. This is because pertussis rates around the world including New Zealand are at epidemic levels. Babies are especially vulnerable to catching this very serious, potentially fatal and easily transmitted infectious disease until they have completed their five month vaccinations. In order to reduce the risk of infants catching pertussis free vaccination is available for women who are 28-38 weeks pregnant. Vaccination is recommended but not funded for all other people who are in close contact with babies. Protect babies and check with the Student Health Service or your health centre to see if you need a pertussis vaccine. For more information visit www.immune.org.nz or call 0800 466 863
Grandmother Should Add chopped fruit, honey/sugar/orange juice, and brandy to red wine to make sangria; in winter, add spices (mixed spice is fine, or can buy pouches of mulled-wine mix) and heat to make mulled wine.
Marinate your steak in leftover red wine to tenderise it; add sugar and liquid pectin to turn it into jelly; or just keep the bottle open, and after a few weeks it’ll turn into vinegar.
3. As a cleaner
4. Hair colouring
Have Taught You By Alexandra Hollis
Peeling garlic: Get a clove of garlic, place it flat side down (so the outer, curved side of the clove is facing upwards). Place the flat side of a large knife on top of the clove, then hit the knife with the heel of your hand. The skin should fall right off. Improve your complexion: Rub a little bit of olive oil over your face before cleaning it. Coconut oil also helps for eczema. Low phone battery? Turn ‘vibrate’ off. Ice (ice baby): Pour coke/juice/the mixer of your choice into an ice tray. In summer, it’ll keep your drinks cool without watering them down. Removing security tags:
Wine works as a natural disinfectant and cleaner for fruit and vegetables, kitchen surfaces (but not granite!), and windows (white wine only).
When you’re dyeing your hair, rinse the dye out with red wine instead of water for a richer, warmer colour.
If a security tag was accidentally left on your purchase, you can run a lighter over the bit that sticks out; the plastic will melt and the tag will pop off. (But don’t use this to shoplift! Ethics aside, most changing rooms are equipped with smoke detectors.)
ARTS McSweeney's Political Bias Arts Rating Guide: 5 Stars: Green/Mana Coalition, 4 Stars: Labour, 3 Stars: National, 2 Stars: United Future, 1 Star: Act, 0 Stars: Pakeha Party
Beginner’s Guide to Opera
for the course. ARTICLE
Next week, New Zealand Opera brings The Flying Dutchman by Richard Wagner to the St James Theatre, so the time is nigh to get seriously cultured. To help you out, you opera virgin, here’s a beginner’s guide to opera: 1. Get your ticket. Tickets to the opera can be seriously expensive, like more-than-your-week’srent expensive, but you can get $25 under-25 tickets by going to the Box Office (at the St James) from 10 am on the performance day. There are a limited number, and ID is required. 2. Storyline. Operas are more likely than not to be in a foreign language, but trust me, it sounds way sexier to sing about your tragic love in Italian than in English. However, this means that it’s a good idea to get to know what’s going to happen in your opera before you go, as a completely sung story can sometimes take a little artistic licence at the expense of a fluid storyline. The Flying Dutchman is loosely about a doomed sea captain who must sail endlessly until true love breaks the spell. Every seven years, he is allowed ashore to try to find her. Fortunately, one day, Senta, a young Norwegian girl, invites a ship’s captain ashore. Will she realise his identity? Will there be love? FYI, opera pretty much always involve some love and some brooding; it’s just par
3. Performance. There is a lot of suspended reality that happens in opera, so for our generation raised on films, it can be hard to get into. All of the characters will look much older than they are meant to, because it’s really hard to be a good opera singer and it takes lots of training. They will sing about the same issues for a long time, which is actually great because you need time to look at the subtitles, listen to the music, take in the beautiful costumes and sets and generally soak up the beautiful atmosphere. Also, opera can be funny; these old composers understood the importance of comic relief as well as anyone. 4. Attire. As the standard ticket prices would suggest, opera can be a wee bit posh. Not like so posh that you need to whip out your Year 13 ball dress, but look smart. Comb your hair. Boys
would be better to wear a shirt, and sneakers just really aren’t appropriate. 5. Etiquette. Along with attire, there is a level of formality at the opera. Be on time (they can be really tough on latecomers), turn your cellphone off—like seriously off, not on silent, BUT OFF. There is never any whooping or cheering at opera but clapping only, and the occasional standing ovation if the performance is totes amaze. Performances can be longer than your average stage show, so bring a drink bottle, tissues, and snacks (just not ones in crinkly wrappings). Go forth and be culturally enriched. The Flying Dutchman by Richard Wagner, performed by NZ Opera. St James Theatre 14–21 September. For more information go to nzopera.com.
The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton review
Alexandra Hollis & Philip McSweeney
Alex Hollis: Phillliipppp. “Total Fines: $200.00” UNIMPRESSED FACE. Can’t get out any more books!! Seriously, dude. Return them, pay the fines, ASAP. Like, now. Philip McSweeney: I’M SORRY I’LL RETURN THEM I PROMISE PROFUSE APOLOGIES AH: I hate you. So much. But also finished The Luminaries. Idk. What do we think? The first thing that leapt out was the conceit; the whole astrological thing governing the characters & how the sections are presented which seems to indicate a sense of the events in the novel being governed by ~larger things~ (wait, no the first thing that leapt out was that it's huuuggge) but I think the conceit only came into its own at the end; for the first 750 pages had little bearing on the plot & seemed largely superfluous PMS: I totally agree! It felt really awkward, & the nods to it (the travesty of the seance, implication that whatserface could read the future) only compounded how pointless it seemed. But, even if it is a flaw it's an AMBITIOUS one; the whole novel is brimming with it, and i was really impressed by the authentic representation (homegrrl obviously did her research) and especially the sociological history that she didn't shy away from. Like, Maori and Chinese peoples were represented in accordance with their population ratios to Pakeha at the time, and their representation managed to avoid appropriation or (even worse god forbid) tedious sanctimony AH: Yeah I was happy with that representation. Felt pretty bang-on, historically. I was definitely sucked into the world & I liked
the plot; it was super intricate, really intertwined, deploying tension at just the right moments. Like, we see certain things from multiple perspectives, but rather than this seeming like repetition it becomes a tool for character development; some people remember some things, or see stuff in a different way. So instead of slowing down the plot it progresses it. PMS: I KNOW the form was incredible, i loved the structure of the parts and their diminishing lengths. Really effective, especially as you get to the home stretch! it was a study of perspective definitely, and a mostly convincing one (some of the coincidences and misunderstandings were a bit overwrought perhaps) AH: "the home stretch": idk. I feel like it was simultaneously where the conceit became fucking wonderful, and quite anticlimactic. We finish the plot and then have like 100 pages of backstory?? PMS: I liked the shift, very Dickensian with how she started embedding the action in the plot starter thingys (which reminded me of Nabokov's hiding the novel of Pale Fire in the footnotes) and which captured the Victorian Lit pastiche element real gud AH: the embedding was wonderful; it brought the chapters themselves into a new space but I just wasn't sure bout the change in direction PMS: BUT U JUST but it wasn't abrupt was it? p. gradually brought in i mean AH: yes but once we've left the main action & gone completely into the past what's the purpose of that? I felt like it was meant to convey this tragic love plot, like ~they were meant to be together~ but this was somewhat diluted by the character of the gold rush/the west coast the people were too *real* to be star-crossed lovers might be that the ~tragic hero~ was missing
most of the time so he was a bit of a cipher PMS: idk i felt like it tied up loose ends really well and really grippingly, and knowing their eventual fate turned up the dramatic irony knob to eleven idk in a weird way its flaws make me like it more just because the book, like its characters, ends up being enigmatic. Next to Morrieson’s The Scarecrow and Owls Do Cry (obvi) i think it's the closest contender to a 'great New Zealand novel' i've read :') AH: when you were like 200 pages through the book you were like GREAT NEW ZEALAND NOVEL but then a couple of days later you didn't seem so certain? PMS: RAMPANT HYPERBOLE IK AH: it certainly is a contender PMS: Yeah it sagged a bit in the middle, too much goddamn exposition AH: it's up there, imo altho I didn't think it was perfect I thought it was very, very good PMS: well that's all i need (omg joni mitchell reference) also do i have to pay your library fines AH: YES HELL YES ALL OF THEM ALL $200 OF THEM Also He was sitting in the lounge of the Empire Hotel He was drinking for diversion He was thinking for himself A little money riding on the Maple Leafs Along comes a lady in lacy sleeves if ‘Raised on Robbery’ isn’t The Luminaries, idk what is. PMS: PERFECT (y)
EGOSPECT by Sheep, Dog & Wolf review
Egospect by Sheep, Dog & Wolf (AKA Daniel McBride) was released on 23 August, heralded the night before by the first-ever live Sheep, Dog & Wolf performance at Puppies. This was an event attended by a horde of hip Wellingtonians and half the population of Weir House 2012 (McBride's hall last year). Originally based in Auckland, Daniel had his start playing drums in punk band Bandicoot, before moving into the art of solo bedroom recording. These bedroom recordings became the first Sheep, Dog and Wolf EP—Ablutophobia, which he managed to record in his last year of high school. This led to a) Sheep, Dog & Wolf signing with Lil' Chief Records and b) a lot of buzz about Daniel McBride as a 'young talent'. This buzz is ridiculed in Simon Sweetman's review of Egospect "better mention he's 19 too because everyone else seems to think that's super important". I agree that the album shouldn't get any 'free points' because of Daniel's age. This is where the consonance between Sweetman's highly critical review and my opinion ends though. Taking from his wide array of influences, wealth of available instruments and fertile musical imagination, McBride has created a coherent, exciting work. Egospect is filled with complicated
arrangements. From the first track, it is made clear that this is not pop music. The opener ‘Breathe’ begins with a drum solo laying down a time signature I can only approximate as 11/4. From here, the track bounces onto a path typical for songs on the album—repeated instrumental parts added on top of one another, building like house music. This climaxes into silence, before layered vocals ask: "Am I able?" These stark vocal moments are where we see the influence of Kiwi indie-punk bands like So So Modern and Knives at Noon. Egospect is where the songwriting sensibilities of indie-punk meet the textures of jazz and folk. Polyphony is a hallmark of the album, with horns, vocals and guitar leaping off each other to create rich soundscapes. Every track has a few variations in the selection of instruments used— standouts being the whistling in 'Guaranteed Defective', the percussion in ‘Egospect’, and the swelling bass sound in 'Fades'. McBride doesn't treat vocals as the centre of the music, but uses them as another instrument in his personal orchestra. His singing varies between rich overdubbed harmonies (such as the church/gospel introduction to the title track) and excitable rhythmic melodies (found in 'Ablutophobia'). McBride's voice might bring up comparisons to Beirut's Zach Condon, or Bon Iver. Lyrics deal with simple frustrations— expectations, lost loves, etc. These concise themes show another connection between Sheep, Dog & Wolf and New Zealand indie bands.
The strongest songs on the album come when the complex arrangements are balanced with strong hooks, as in 'Not Aquatic', 'Ablutophobia' and 'Egospect'. All of these are built on deviously catchy melodies. I wouldn't suggest listening to 'Egospect' if you don't want "Maybe it's better than I thought after all" ringing through your head for the next 24 hours. Finding some kind of uncharted middle-ground between Gil Evans’ arrangements, Beirut, and Cut Off Your Hands, Egospect is an exciting album to say the least. McBride has pulled off an extremely complex task in creating this genre-stretching debut. The next generation in New Zealand music is (in Daniel's words) "Not so bad". Pay what you want for the album on his Bandcamp: download. sheepdogandwolf.com/album/egospect.
Upcoming/Leaked Albums Pixies - EP1 (Rock, Grunge) The Weeknd - Kissland (R 'n' B) Arctic Monkeys - AM (Rock) Tim Hecker - Virgins (Ambient)
Janelle Monae - The Electric Lady (Soul) Nine Inch Nails - Hesitation Marks (Industrial) Willis Earl Beal - Nobody Knows (Folk)
Comprehending Complexity ARTICLE
Networks large and small make up so much of our world, from biology to the stock market. Theoretical physicist Shaun Hendy says the true nature of complex systems such as these can only be understood through how they act collectively, rather than by looking at each small part making up the whole. Hendy’s most recent research into complexity has been around innovation, and his book with Sir Paul Callaghan, Get Off the Grass, attempts to get at the root of what is holding New Zealand back when it comes to innovation by examining our economy’s reliance on agriculture. order, structure, pattern is a sculptural expression of Hendy’s research by Wellington artist Gabby O’Connor. Installed at Toi Poneke, the sculpture is instantly recognisable by those familiar with O’Connor’s work, as it mirrors the faceted shapes forming her notable icebergs. The facets
Gregory Crewdson, In a Lonely Place, City Gallery
“…the photographer is a joyous sensualist, for the simple reason that the eye traffics in feelings, not in thoughts.” – Walker Evans I had not been into the Wellington City Gallery for close to a year when I went in, seeking refuge from the cold on the first day of spring. Gregory Crewdson’s photographs from his series Beneath the Roses would be running only for another week. I am grateful for chance—for had I missed this, I would have missed seeing loneliness itself hang before me in the form of gelatine prints. Crewdson’s photographs are like that feeling when you recognise the unsympathetic light of dusk—the ‘bad time’ as I unaffectionately call it—when one realises another day has ended, as it did yesterday and will do tomorrow, and you remain very, very small and insignificant, existing and little else through endless numbered days. They are the lonely place. Crewdson, a
of order, structure, pattern are negative space, however, defined by a complex lacing of rope between long extension cables. The resulting nets are stretched floor-to-ceiling through Toi Poneke’s L-shaped gallery in three distorted rectangular panels. The first panel is largely blue, a colour O’Connor was avoiding for this project until a supply shortage forced her hand. This panel feels rather abrupt before the rest—red, pink, orange and yellow—dominate most of the gallery. The plugs where the extension cables meet are satisfyingly distributed throughout the nets, and act as a subtle reminder of the inspiration for the work.
relation to the system as a whole. The work compels the viewer, but it also pushes them away, requiring them to view the structure from afar. You can hear Gabby O’Connor and Shaun Hendy talk about their collaboration at Toi Poneke on Saturday 14 September, 1 pm.
What is particularly striking about order, structure, pattern is the way its form connects to Hendy’s explanation of understanding complex systems. The work is made up of lines, connecting hundreds of pathways along thousands of metres of rope and cable. Each length of rope is made up of hundreds more smaller intertwined strands. These lines do not connect any discrete, and attempting to discern meaning from individual lines is futile, for their meaning is reliant on their
Brooklyn native (of New York, not Wellington), has staged these photographs and set them in the much-familiar and endlessly exercised image of Americana country—and he’s done it well. It’s the America that you may remember from such works as Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks or Grant Wood’s American Gothi or Gary Ross’ 1998 film Pleasantville, or even, in the pictures of her restricted social circle, the work of Nan Goldin. And like their work, he transcends a sentiment that we can recognise—one hard to describe with words and easier to understand with images.
a reason. He hasn’t just photographed scenes of loneliness, he’s essentially designed them; the light, the people, the places, the junk on the street, the abandoned car, the snow. All of it makes you feel cold inside. Move over Lester Burnham, Gregory Crewdson is the new king of the human condition.
Crewdson stages photographs embodying our normative state of loneliness, and considers both the internal and external manifestations of the condition. They cause a reflection upon our unnatural tendency to deny ourselves loneliness, to prevent and eradicate it. But we see that it’s not all bad; perhaps it should not even be feared. Crewdson’s photos are dark and dramatised, theatricised almost, but truthful in their starkness, emanating something whose familiarity is in an odd fashion equally warming and eerie. The way in which he created each like a movie set is equally impressive, the importance of each detail emphasised because everything is there for
guess what episode! season 6
What's on Film: Wellington in the 1950s and 1960s ﬁlm programme When: 7 pm, Wednesday through Saturday, 11–14 September Where: The New Zealand Film Archive, 84 Taranaki St, Wellington Ticket price: $8 general admission / $6 concession The Devil Dared Me To (2007) ﬁlm screening
When: 7 pm, Thursday through Saturday, 5–7 September Where: The Film Archive, 84 Taranaki St Ticket price: $8 general admission / $6 concession A Place to Stay: Salisbury Garden Court
When: 4.30–5.30 pm, Saturday 14 September Where: The Film Archive, 84 Taranaki St, Te Aro Ticket price: $8 general admission / $6 concession Soup & A Seat When: 12.15–1.15 pm, every Friday Where: The Film Archive, 84 Taranaki St, Te Aro Ticket price: $8, which includes your ticket and a serving of soup Protecting the Night Sky
When: 7–9.30 pm, Wednesday 11 September Where: Carter Observatory, 40 Salamanca Rd, Kelburn Ticket price: $35 adult / $25 Star Pass holder / $25 concession The Joyless Street/Die freudlose Gasse (1925) film screening
Season 6: Treehouse of Horror V - Shining parody/Homer goes back in time with a toaster. Season 8: "El Viaje Misterioso de Nuestro Jomer (The Mysterious Voyage of Homer)" - Homer goes batshit crazy on chili and hallucinates. Season 10: Mom and Pop Art - WHY MUST I FAIL AT EVERY ATTEMPT AT MASONRY/ Homer becomes an artist/floods the town as "Instillation art" Season 14: Brake My Wife, Please - Homer buys a bunch of car accessories,crashes the car and starts walking everywhere/sings a song about walking IT'S GREAT 48
When: 6.15–8.50 pm, Monday 9 September Where: The Paramount Theatre, 25 Courtenay Place Ticket price: Free!
TICKETS FROM COSMICTICKETING.CO.NZ OR COSMIC STORES NZ WIDE salient.org.nz <<<
va rie ty pu zz le s & CR OSSWO RD by pu ck — AN SW ERS NE XT ISSUE
'running the gamut' - DIFFICULTY: hard 43. Some pick-up trucks, for short 44. Writer Emily or Anne 46. River that starts in Bern, Switzerland 48. Locales 50. * ‘Chicago’ lyric that follows “Come on, babe, why don’t we paint the town” 55. Kill, as a fly 56. ____-garde art 57. One of Oasis’ Gallaghers 59. Record with a VCR 60. Republic that used to be Zaire 61. Seaweed for sushi 62. Field for a bachelor’s degree 63. Home moon of the Ewoks 64. The whole range… or where the answers to the five starred clues go, literally
ACROSS 1. * ‘Parks and Rec’ comedian Ansari 5. Sect with horse-drawn buggies 10. One of Oasis’ Gallaghers 14. El matador’s opponent 15. Event with horses and clowns 16. Brink 17. Resembling a wing 18. “___ you even sorry?” 19. Terrible kid 20. * ‘The Diamond _____’ (F. Scott Fitzgerald story with a hotel in the name)
23. “You can’t make me!” 24. Kate’s role in ‘Titanic’ 25. McCartney’s songwriting partner 28. ‘___ Girls’ (Lohan movie) 30. 1950s designer Cassini 31. * From Cp. Reinga to Stewart Is., say 35. Suffix meaning ‘little ones’ 36. Order that includes humans and lemurs 38. Brain scan abbrev. 40. * Island prison in San Francisco 42. Firefighting device
QUIZ 1. Which university were the students who made the ‘Blurred Lines’ parody that went viral last week from? 2. Who did David Cunliffe personally greet at the Labour leadership meeting in Whangarei? 3. Which football player signed for Arsenal in a club-record £42.5 million transfer last week? 4. True or false: taro roots and leaves are both considered toxic when raw. 5. Who did the recently deceased
DOWN 1. ___ glance (quickly) 2. Author Emile 3. Gershwin and Glass, for two 4. Extreme Kiwi sport that involves a giant plastic ball 5. Catherine of ___ (Henry VIII’s wife) 6. ‘How to Be a Woman’ author Caitlin 7. What i.e. is short for 8. Note on an outbox email 9. ‘Star Wars’ ice planet 10. NBA’s James and namesakes 11. ‘Pacific Rim’ actor Elba 12. ‘Banded’ mineral 13. Home of the oldest working opera house in France 21. ‘Letters from ___ Jima’ 22. Delete 25. Singer Reed or Bega
26. Jazz great Fitzgerald 27. ‘Snow Crash’ author Stephenson 28. Singer Jason (or his debut album, which suits this puzzle) 29. Letters at the bottom of a comments page 31. Ventilates 32. Prize for Taylor Swift and Keith Urban, for short 33. Signage gas 34. Ingredient in a lemon muffin 36. Dev of ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ 37. Google Maps pathway (abbrev.) 39. “Crikey!” 41. Takes care of an exhibition 42. Word of Biblical praise 44. One who wagers 45. British rule in India 46. Ex-Egyptian president Sadat 47. Make a change to 48. Lend ___ (help out) 49. Depp film about a lizard 50. Terrier in detective fiction 51. Tie up, as shoes 52. ___ demand (streamed item) 53. ___ suit (40s fashion) 54. Smallest non-negative integer 58. Faded actress Taylor
LAST WEEK'S SOLUTION
broadcaster David Frost famously coax an apology from? 6. Which country borders Turkey, Iraq, Jordan, Israel and Lebanon? 7. What has the Wikileaker formerly known as Bradley Manning changed their first name to? 8. Who called a referendum on asset sales an “utter waste of money”? 9. Which team cheated in the 2012 America’s Cup World Series? 10. True or false: ‘twerking’ has been added to Oxford Dictionaries online.
Answers: 1. Auckland. 2. Shane Jones’ mother. 3. Mesut Özil. 4. True. 5. Former US President Richard Nixon. 6. Syria. 7. Chelsea. 8. John Key. 9. Oracle Team USA. 10. True.
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n i t
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Target rating guide: 0-15 words: do you even go here? 16-25 words: alright 26-35 words: decent 36-50 words: PRO 80+ words: free drink
ACT Administration Beehive Cabinet Campaign Coalition Constitution Council Delegate Election
Electorate Green Government Governer-General High Court Labour Law Leader Left Legislature
Lobby Mana Minister MMP Monarchy National Parliament Party political policy
Poll Prime Minister Progressive Representatives Turnout Treaty Vote
SUDOKU difficulty: easy
letters letter of the week
win a $10 voucher for the hunter lounge
not the hero labour deserves...
ineffective, NZUSSR, The New Zealand Union of Soviet Student Republics. The 45k donated to NZUSA for the NZUSA Prez to travel the world could buy a lot of food parcels or bus tickets. I hope VUWSA leaves NZUSA. Sincerely, The Watcher
Love from Medicated Pixie.
Dear Salient, Correct me if I’m wrong (that’s a hollow gesture, you guys need to shut your mouth), but isn’t the Labour leadership battle a little leadershit? We have one candidate you will literally eat a man’s face, vomit it back up, feed it to a Border collie, kill the Border collie, join the local rugby team, then yell “socialism rulz” in some sort of desperate bid to get the leadership. The other candidate repeats the same three talking points to anyone who in a desperate bid to appear as some sort of David Lange reincarnate, come to save Labour from the neo-liberal menace he built. And the final candidate who thinks the taxpayer should foot the bill for his pelvic playtime in a desperate bid to get himself off. You can decide who you want. See you in 2014 fuckahs. Stay ignorant. John Key, King of NZ. (P.S, I just saw that film “Now You See Me” and despite the title it is not a Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Helen Keller porn parody, so don’t get your hopes up)
[opinion censored] Dear NZUSAlient I see the VUWSA executive has finally found a fucking spine about NZUSA. NZUSA is the biggest con in student politics and its demise has been long anticipated. NZUSA hasn’t been relevant since the late 1990’s, and even then it couldn’t stop the student loan changes. It is time for VUWSA, like Poland in 1989 to break away from the crumbling,
not trying, just think happy thoughts” to a diabetic who relies on a pump to not die, somebody with asthma who has an inhaler to stop their airways closing up, or somebody with a smashed leg, then don't tell clinically depressed people who need medication to not emotionally, physically and mentally die to just 'suck it up'.
a blow to the sex trade Dear Salients I hope no students are working as prostitutes. It is very, very naughty! From Asenati Blow-me Taylor
read it again, sam Dear Salient. Fleur Oxitine made me a little bit sad. No love for depressed people who need medication. I'm one of those people, and I have no shame about it, no embarrassment, because for me and people with a similar problem, it's neither a choice nor a decision. I had to accept that after a good two years trying to fix 'it' with talking, taking therapy. I knew I was a standard human being, with awesome bits and awful bits and average bits. And I still broke into tears at the smallest setback and took the bus home so that I couldn’t contemplate jumping off the viaduct. It didn't change the fact that my brain was and is a bit broken. Not my mind; that was a lost cause since birth. My actual physical brain. I don't produce enough of the right hormones to process 'happy' properly. So like a diabetic who takes insulin to process sugar properly because their pancreas is a little bit broken, I have to take a round white pill each evening before bed because my brain doesn't make enough serotonin. If you wouldn't say “Harden up, you’re
have you not been reading page 16? What happened to the Top Ten that graced Salient's prime position on the third page every week? They were wallworthy and the sacred testament for my flat and I. Please, think of the children and bring back the humoursly wise advice such as 'Top Ten Ways to Find Love' that made Salient more Reliant.
nah, your mum Dear Salient, Why all the "your mum" jokes? Don't you know you're just buying into the patriarchy's collective Freudian complex? More dad jokes please. And jokes about poo. Yours sincerely, Jung
STOP BEING SO FAECE-TIOUS Maybe I take abnormally long poos. I didn't used to be self contious about the length of my bowel movements but the upgrade of the library toilets has made me question my regularity. Recently, I took a break from my study for a nice relaxing trip to the John to drop the kids off. The newness of the facilities provides
nt k! me ? z in s th om .n g c er u tt yo an or . c Le at u nt h w yo lie ow ow sa kn kn at s u yo icle t id D n ar o
letters a wonderful environment for making dirt and I was somewhat excited about this. However, halfway through laying my pipe the motion dector, time delayed lights went out. This is a problem! I am all for saving the planet and stuff, but if you're not going to deseign a window in to the wall, then either lengthen the timer or place the sensor in a place in which one is able to frantically wave their hands and trigger the lights. Thanks heaps, Left in the Dark
more like course cata-slog, amirite? Dear Course Cataloguelient The New Vic website is so shit. Try planning your courses next year. It is fucking shit! From Hobgoblin
call us $alient My dear, Greeting's, to you and your family, first I apologize for sending you this sensitive information via e-mail, instead of a Certified mail/Post-mail. This is due to the urgency and importance of the information. My name is Mrs.Susan, because of my health situations now and the present situation of this country, I want to transfer all my money and my only adopted child to you in your country now for safety,your help is highly needed immediately. My Regards. Mrs.Susan
footy, m8 Dear Waaah-lient, On behalf of all us Spurs-supporting readers, let me mourn the transfer of the Chosen One, the Welsh Wizard, Sir Luscious Left Foot, Gareth Bale, to Real(ly rich) Madrid. Oh, how we will miss your scorching, slaloming runs through defenders, your seemingly impossible lastminute goals, even your kinda-wanky goal celebration. Thanks for the good times, ol' chap, and godspeed. Tearfully yours, Andre Levy.
souljah seeks soulmate Hail Jah-lient, Once more me affi write to yah. Tank yah for de recognishan, mon, me done appreciate de natty prize. Me problem is dat me nah go nevah to de Huntah Lounge so me nah done spent me vouchah, an' me tink it expaiyah soon. Me nah got nobodeh to go dere wit, no wat me sayin'? Me nah got nobodeh to skank wit, woah, oh, skankin'. Keep op de righteous liberehshan
ar ed nd tic le z? no ca u us g.n yo p or m t. e av ca H w ien e l r n sa ou at
stroggahl against de downpression, an' hail Jah Rastafari, Buffalo Souljah.
rory doesn't know he's beautiful dear directionlient
NOTICES CAREERS AND JOBS
Weekly seminars on Wednesdays, Level 2, Easterfield Building, 12.50pm
Details on CareerHub:
Applications closing soon:
guys i think you should take a page out of creme and girlfriend magazine's books more often. that time you had harry styles on the cover was great, but that was FOREVER ago now!!! more boybands/ popstars please. the pictures you put in salient of rory mccourt don't fit in with the other posters on my walls. LOL.
Visit us: Level 2, Easterfield Building Drop-in hours: Mon- Wed 1-3pm. Thurs & Fri
Closing Sep 9
Coca-cola Amatil EY
Tasman District Council
Assosication of New Zealand Mozilla Sep 27
The Business and Investment Club (BIC)
invites you to a very cool guest speaker event with the Finance minister Bill English!
Asia NZ Foundation (Taiwan)
IT IS I, LAURA. YOU MAY RECOGNISE ME AS THE DESIGNER OF [ITALICS: SALIENT] THIS YEAR. I'M HERE TO ANNOUNCE MY CANDIDACY FOR VUWSA PREZ 2014. I PROMISE ONE (1) CAT FOR EVERY STUDENT AND PHOTOSHOPS OF CELEBRITIES ON UNICORNS. ALSO MAYBE IF YOU'RE GOOD WE'LL HAVE A SHARED LUNCH EVERY OTHER WEEK. I DIDN'T GO TO VIC AND I KNOW NOTHING ABOUT THIS UNI EXCEPT HOW TO GET TO MY OFFICE AND VIC BOOKS (I KNOW IT'S BEEN 7 MONTHS SINCE WE STARTED, I'VE BEEN BUSY OKAY!!!). BUT IF YOU LIKE GOOD TIMES AND COOL CATS THEN I CAN PROBABLY PROVIDE. I WANTED TO INSERT A PICTURE OF MYSELF WEARING COOL SUNGLASSES WITH TWO THUMBS UP AND THE TEXT "WHO'S GONNA BE NEXT VUWSA PREZ? THIS GUY" UNDER IT, BUT THERE REALLY WASN'T ROOM. YOU CAN USE YOUR IMAGINATION THOUGH. JESUS, DO I HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING?!? IF THIS DOESN'T SATISFY YOU THEN HONESTLY, IDEK WHAT STUDENTS FUCKIN WANT. SMOOCHES LOLRA 54
"Managing $250 billion portfolio" by the Finance Minister Bill English
NZX Victoria University (FHSS)
HELLO FEEBLE STUDENTS
16th, 2014 (University of California Nov 28)
Aviat Networks Wynard Group
Deadline for Tri 2, 2014 exchanges: January
xoxo sally whatsup
Japan Information & Cultural Centre
23rd September - "Managing $250 billion portfolio" by the Finance Minister Bill English. Bill has found one evening in his very busy schedule to come talk to us about his daily job of managing the state assets, businesses and investments worth of $250 billion NZ dollars. Come and find out what is it like to run the finance for the country, what prior business/finance experience has he had,
Employer Presentation JET (Teach English in Japan) Intent Group
how can students and graduates follow Sep 10
his success, what is important to study in
finance, where can students get their first finance experience and so much more. This is the one guest speaker event you must not
Careers Expo Victoria Business School: Executive
Happy Hour with Dance With Me @ Vic Come along and check out the dance talent
miss! CareerHub RSVP: careerhub.vuw.ac.nz/ ViewEvent.chpx?id=147874
VicIDS Speaker Event: Live Below the Line Monday 9 September, 5:15pm, CO304 The challenge? Spend 5 days feeding
VUW has to offer!
yourself with $2.25 a day – the New Zealand
Where: Hunter Lounge
equivalent of the extreme poverty line.
When: Wednesday 25th September
Hear Mattie Geary Nichol, Karla Paotonu,
Show starts at 6pm
Pip Bennett & Heather Walker discuss the
Live Below the Line campaign, aimed at
Can Do AGM
combatting extreme poverty. Mattie is a former VSA UniVol volunteer who spent 2011 living & working in Vanuatu. Karla Paotunu is
Can Do's AGM will be held on the 19th
VSA's fundraising manager. Heather Walker
September in Meeting Room 1 of the Student
is a former Peace Corps volunteer in Mali,
Union Building, from 12-1pm. There will
working with Pip Bennett on the international
be pizza provided. Come along to hear
advocacy team at UNICEF.
about Can Do's year and vote for new exec members.
Notices Policy: Salient provides a free notice service for all VIctoria students, VUWSA-affiliated clubs not-for-profit organisations. Notices should be received by 5pm Tuesday the
Vic OE – Vic Student Exchange Programme
week before publication. Notices must be fewer than 100 words. For-profit organisations will be charged $15 per notice. Send notices to firstname.lastname@example.org with 'Notice' in the subject line.
t en r .nz ud o g st FM r ur .3 t.o yo 88 ien to n! l in atio sa ne st at Tu dio line ra on am re st
Missed out on getting a show? Spaces ARE NOW AVALIABLE; get in touch with MUSICDIRECTOR.vbc@GMAIL.COM
Jiving James & Grooving Greg
Dead Man Mondays Casey &Joss
Parallels w/ Cookie
Tbodega he Mixtape w/ Sam & guests
The Flight Coffee VBC Breakfast Show
Amber, Scott & Matt, Keegan & Rohan music, news, interviews & giveaways
DC Current w/ Duncan & Cam
INFIDEL CASTRO w/ Philip McSweeney
Grace Ace fills the Space GURL TALK w/ Chloe, Sophie and Elise Fill Me!
Domo Arigato Mr Robato
Raw Politik Emanuel & Neas
Wake N' Bake w/ Pearce
Northbound Alex, Michael & Nick
Dark Sound Waves w/ Keszia Tyler
Thursday Drive with A.D.D. Aidan
Sunday Fly Lorenzo &
Superfluous Superheroes tim & alex
The B-Side Revolution w/ Richard
PRE-LOAD w/ Matt &
Signal Sounds w/ Holly, Stumble, Goosehead & Vic Seratonin 7pm - Late
GIG GUIDE mon 9
2 for 1 Pizzas
2 4 1 Cocktails
DJ Beat Mob, Suckerpunch $5
Mighty Quiz 6:30pm
Doubledipp & Trip Pony plus Queens
Bloodbags, Tape-Wolf & Doberman
Wednesday night free show!
san francisco bathhouse
bodega meow cafe
Wellington Mingus Ensemble
Latin Club 8:30pm (free!)
Cure Motel + Zillions + New Hang ups
puppies the southern cross salient.org.nz <<<
The JAM (free!)
Stitch & Bitch 7:00pm
Electric Quiz 8pm - 10pm
Kroon For Your Kai 6:30pm
Departure CLub DJs
Friday the 13th
Olmecha the Relic
The Troubles (free!)
Pups - Battle round two
Emma Wall & The Urban Folk 7:30pm
Carlos Navae Band 10:00pm
La Dolce Vita
Come and hear the plan from VUWSA, Mayor Celia Wade-Brown and Councillors to make housing in Wellington warm and dry.
HUB 1PM • WEDNESDAY 11th SEP HEALTHY HOMES LAUNCH + AGM Also hear what your student exec has been up to and what you can do to support the campaign!