- promoting a clearer understanding of men's experience -

MENZ.org.nz Logo First visit to MENZ.org.nz? Here's our introduction page.

MENZ Issues: news and discussion about New Zealand men, fathers, family law, divorce, courts, protests, gender politics, and male health.

Sat 27th August 2005

Men more intelligent than women, says academic

Filed under: General — tonyf @ 10:14 pm

tonyf: Im kind of sceptical of this whole article, but for your information…

By Sarah Cassidy

Men are more likely to win Nobel prizes and achieve excellence simply because they are more intelligent than women , according to a controversial male academic.
In a paper to be published in a leading research journal, one of Britain’s most outspoken academics will argue that men have larger brains and higher IQs than women, to such an extent that they are better suited to “tasks of high complexity”. (more…)

Thu 25th August 2005

BREAKING NEWS: Dads On the Run

Filed under: Child Support,Law & Courts — JohnPotter @ 2:59 pm

Review at The Wild Duck

Passengers on a Modern Day Underground Railroad: Are They Deadbeats, or Freed Slaves?

…fathers in both the US and Canada, bankrupted by the effort to obtain Equal Protection in Family Courts on both sides of the border, are accepting offers from a heretofore secretive organization helping these victims flee the two countries.

The key questions one must ask after reviewing this article are:

  • Are fathers like “Dave” “deadbeats”, or “escaped slaves”?
  • Is the Western Standard’s willingness to print this article, and particularly Mr. Kelly’s characterization of child support payments as a “tax” paid to the ex-wife, a turning point in the struggle for equality in Family Courts?

Mon 22nd August 2005

Obesity linked with higher prostate cancer risk

Filed under: Men's Health — tonyf @ 11:52 am

Men who are overweight are more likely than thinner men to be diagnosed with prostate cancers that are less likely to be detected on screening and more likely to be aggressive, according to a report in the medical journal Urology.

Kerre Woodham: Women who make false rape complaints let the team down

Filed under: Law & Courts — tonyf @ 11:31 am

I hope they throw the book at the 23-year-old woman who’s been charged after making a false rape complaint against a Wellington taxi driver.

Mon 15th August 2005

Videos of Men’s Summit

Filed under: Gender Politics,General — JohnPotter @ 12:01 pm

Videos of Men's Issues Summit
The speakers at the New Zealand Men’s Issues Summit held in Auckland on 6th May 2005 were filmed by Murray Bacon and Bryan Norton. The videos have been formatted for the web by John Potter, and are available online thanks to www.archive.org.

False sex complaints earn 5 months’ jail

Filed under: Law & Courts,Sex Abuse / CYF — JohnPotter @ 10:40 am

A Waikato woman has been jailed for making false complaints that she was raped by a policeman and sexually assaulted by his colleague.

Sally Marie Inglis, 44, was sentenced to five months jail at the Tauranga District Court yesterday after being found guilty of two charges of making a false complaint to police.

Judge Robert Spear said the offending was “at the very highest end of the scale” and a prison sentence was required.

“You need to spend some time in prison to contemplate why you are back there.”

Judge Spear said the sentence, two-and-a-half months’ imprisonment for each charge, was influenced by the woman’s continued insistence that the claims were true despite clear evidence to the contrary and by the devastating effect they had had on the victims.

On April 14 last year, the woman told police she was sexually assaulted by a female non-sworn police employee when arrested on December 9, 2003, and that she was raped several times by the arresting officer two months later.

The female victim, spoken to after the sentence, said it had been the most traumatic experience of her life, and while prison was appropriate, it would not “give us back what she has taken from us”.

Decision compounds failure of criminal justice system

Filed under: Law & Courts,Sex Abuse / CYF — JohnPotter @ 10:29 am

by Chris Trotter. Otago Daily Times, August 12th 2005

I was one of those who signed the petition organised by Don Brash and Lynley Hood calling for a Royal
Commission of Inquiry into the arrest, trial and conviction of Peter Ellis in the Christchurch civic creche case.

While recommending a number of worthwhile changes to the legal web in which the unfortunate Mr Ellis became entangled, the petitioners’ request for a full and independent investigation, conducted by a legal expert from outside New Zealand, was declined. As a result, the catastrophic failure of our criminal justice system, represented by the Ellis case, will endure unacknowledged, unexamined, uncorrected, and unreproved.

And unfortunate, because miscarriages of justice on the scale of the Ellis case exert a pernicious influence on every one of the institutions that they touch. Local government, the police, social welfare, the courts, the judiciary and now Parliament have all been tainted by their involvement. In every instance, ignorance, fear, and the singular reluctance of institutional authorities to ever admit to error, have combined to exacerbate and extend the original injustice.

The most alarming aspect of this institutional infection is that the longer it is allowed to continue, the higher it rises. What began as an expression of individual and collective hysteria gradually morphed into the exercise of civic, police and, ultimately, judicial power. At every stage, the application of scientific and forensic rationality could have brought the whole manic process to an end.

Sadly, a malign confluence of individual obsession, ideological dogma, religious bigotry and reckless careerism pushed the case forward to the point where a great many reputations, both individual and institutional, had become inextricably bound up with Ellis’s fate.

There is something truly horrifying about this failure of our judicial system. Not only did it condemn a man whose guilt was in more than reasonable doubt to 10 years in prison, but it conferred upon Peter Ellis’s accusers an undeserved and entirely spurious credibility. The groups responsible for the “witch craze” that we know as the Christchurch Civic Creche child abuse scandal: all those “ritual abuse” peddlers, “recovered memory” counsellors, “all men are rapists” feminists, “children never lie” social workers and “Satan is among us” Christian fundamentalists, have never been called to account.

Fri 12th August 2005

Family Court changes to help reduce delays

Filed under: Law & Courts — JohnPotter @ 8:45 am

A shake-up of the Family Court would see a counselling and mediation service established to handle disputes, freeing up judges for the most high-risk and complex cases.

Chief Family Court Judge Peter Boshier outlined the proposals in a speech to the Auckland Family Courts Association last night, saying the changes would help to reduce delays in the system.

A court “intake consultant” – a position that could be filled by Family Court co-ordinators – would assess each case and decide whether to refer it straight to the court or conciliation. At present, most cases were referred automatically for counselling, which proceeded to mediation and then court if the dispute could not be resolved.

Only cases where there was a risk to children’s welfare – such as allegations of sexual abuse or violence – should enter the Family Court directly and be “closely managed and determined by judges”, said Judge Boshier.

Auckland family lawyer Brian Gubb supported the proposals, saying they would speed the court process and remove some of the “more destructive aspects of the adversarial process”. It should also save money for the parties involved.

Antony Mahon, chairman of the Auckland Family Courts Association, said the proposals were “quite innovative” and had his support provided they were adequately funded and trained staff filled the new roles.

Darrell Carlin, spokesman for the Union of Fathers, said the group was keen to see a faster court process. At present there was no incentive for women to go through mediation as they knew they would win in court.

He supported more mediation, provided that equal shared custody was the “default position”.

National Women’s Refuge spokeswoman Lesley Melrose said it was vital that counsellors remained impartial and women did not feel pressured to agree to things they were not happy with.

More family cases should avoid court, top judge says

Filed under: Domestic Violence,Law & Courts,Sex Abuse / CYF — JohnPotter @ 8:40 am

More cases involving children should be dealt with outside court or by someone other than a judge, the principal Family Court judge says.

In a speech tonight to the Auckland Family Courts Association, Judge Boshier said the changes were needed to maintain confidence and reduce delays as requested by Parliament.

He said: “Better processes could be created for New Zealanders using our Family Court. These can occur in both a better conciliation service and in better use of the Family Court itself.”

The current counselling service was out of date and a new conciliation service was needed for those who may not require a court hearing, he said.

Judge Boshier said in cases involving violence or sexual abuse, delay was the “single greatest injurious factor”.

“Only children’s cases involving risk to welfare of children should enter the Family Court directly and be closely managed and determined by judges,” he said.

Thu 11th August 2005

Relex men, the NZ Family Court is fixed

Filed under: Law & Courts — JohnPotter @ 4:48 pm

Vivienne Crawshaw has ended her series of articles in the Herald about the NZ Family Court.
Two years of big advances in family law

It would be an interesting exercise to analyse the outcomes she presents in her stories as a balanced picture, compared with the hundreds of actual Family Court judgements now in men’s group databases.

Crawshaw begins by outlining recent changes, keeping ‘on-message’ to the end about what a fair and responsible institution the court is.

“In the past two years the area of family law has been saturated with a flood of legislative changes.

“These have ranged from altering the primary law governing the care of children to change the emphasis to one of continuing children’s relationships with both parents, to presumptions about guardianship (a child’s father will now usually be a guardian whether or not he and the mother are living together), to widening the class of people who can apply to have care of children, to admitting the media into family courtrooms and many more.

“The focus of the law relating to care of children remains the child’s (not the adult’s) best interests and welfare.

“That focal point will not please everyone, particularly those with ideological agendas including radical fathers’ rights organisations and extreme feminists, both of whom criticise the legislation and its implementation on the basis that it fails to serve their needs.”

Crawshaw’s choice of language in her column makes it pretty clear where she is coming from. The idea that there are “radical fathers’ rights organisations” throughout the country with “ideological agendas” to introduce policies which benefit men and revive patriarchy, is pure feminist spin-doctoring imported from across the Tasman. Papers which introduced this theme include Regina Graycar: ‘Equal Rights versus Fathers Rights’ and Miranda Kaye & Julia Tolmie: ‘Fathers’ Rights Groups in Australia’.

Child Support Act Creates Unjust and Inequitable Situation for Student Loan Borrowers

Filed under: Child Support,General — Scrap_The_CSA @ 11:57 am

Media Release

Parents for Children

Child Support Act Creates Unjust and Inequitable Situation for Student Loan Borrowers

Parents for Children have been supporting a father, who has a student debt, though the Family Court child support departure order process. The dad was seeking a variation to the rigid child support formula assessment (a Departure Order) to take into account his compulsory student loan repayments when calculating the amount of child support he was assessed to pay. The applicant was a self represented litigant supported by a McKenzie friend from Parents for Children.

The basis of the application for a variation from the rigid child support formula was that compulsory student loan repayments significantly reduced the capacity of this dad to support his son. In his decision, dated July 28 2005 , the Family Court Judge agreed with the fathers position that the student loan repayments were necessary and that the applicants ability to support his son, due to compulsory student loan repayments, was significantly reduced.

Mon 8th August 2005

False rape complaints annoy police

Filed under: Law & Courts,Sex Abuse / CYF — JohnPotter @ 2:46 pm

Hamilton police will decide this week whether to charge two women who made separate false rape complaints at the weekend.

Detective Sergeant Nigel Keall said police spent time and resources investigating the women’s complaints.

“It’s just a waste of resources that could have been used elsewhere.”

Senior investigators estimate that between 60 and 80 per cent of rape complaints made by women are false.

Mr Keall said false complaints tainted the community’s perception of sexual offending and the genuine victims who needed support.

He said there was also a difference between people making complaints of stranger rapes and making allegations against a specific person, which could sometimes be malicious.

Call for inquiry into Ellis case rejected

Filed under: Sex Abuse / CYF — JohnPotter @ 2:44 pm

A parliamentary committee has rejected a call for a royal commission of inquiry into the case of convicted childcare worker Peter Ellis.

A petition calling for a top-level look at the creche case has been with Parliament’s justice and electoral select committee for two years.

Committee chairman Tim Barnett said today a royal commission was not the most effective way to address the real issues emerging from the case.

The committee made seven recommendations including that the attorney-general not oppose, or oppose only in principle, a proposed application by Ellis for leave to appeal to the Privy Council.

Now you see them, now you don’t

Filed under: General — JohnPotter @ 2:40 pm

Is the glare of publicity too harsh for Family Courts to endure?, ask Citizens for Justice. They note that:

On or about 29 July 2005, at about 5pm, exactly 29 days – just 4 weeks and 1 day – after the new “Care of Children Act 2004” came into effect, all those beautiful Family Court Flowers [ie: published FC decisions] had mysteriously died, or at least, disappeared, leaving little trace in the blackened and scorched earth that remained. The entire list, published and presented for general, global public consumption on the Family Courts’ website, at http://www.justice.govt.nz/family/decisions/ had suddenly, without apparent warning or explanation, been deleted, the link deactivated, and replaced on almost every page on the site, with charcoal lettering as shown below

C4J goes on to explain to the uninitiated about how to retrieve old web pages from search engine caches, so all the cases (which have been unwisely left on the site) , have now been safely downloaded to at least half a dozen personal archives around the country.

It seems someone whose case was published has complained.

The Family Court says:

“The decisions have been removed due to updates taking
place. They should be up and running within the next few days.

Christchurch Men’s Summit in the Media

Filed under: General — JohnPotter @ 2:17 pm

Some items in the media about the Christchurch Men’s Issues Summit.

In Father & Child Magazine Issue 30, Winter 2005 Page 18:

Another forum touts the message that men are hard done by. It has all the ingredients of another expensive failure, writes Harald BreidingBuss.

Now, eight years later, we have had a ‘Men’s Forum’. This time around the event started in Auckland, and is now in the process of being exported to Christchurch as well. Instead of the Governor General (which at the moment is female) the organisers picked John Tamihere as their high profile person. Unwittingly, choosing a ‘yesterday’s man’ like Tamihere is symptomatic for the rest of the lineup, which almost entirely consists of the recycled remnants of a national fathers committee I once tried to create: the “NZ Father & Child Society”.

That was also in 1998, and I guess it is telling that in those seven intervening years this group has failed to bring any new faces to the fore. Although I created it to support a national approach for developing on the ground services for fathers, the resulting group never wanted to go there. Like ‘Fathering the Future’ they saw the way forward in pestering the media with opinions rather than being there for dads when they are needed. Without any work going into building up the base, no new people could emerge, and, like ‘Fathering the Future’ the group was quickly heading for either oblivion or insignificance.

Nevertheless, two of the speakers in the upcoming Christchurch Forum chose to use ‘NZ Father & Child Society’ in identifying their credentials, although they have no connection with the work linked to the name Father & Child, such as this magazine, our teen dads project or our work in the area of childbirth.

Ironically, all of the speakers at the forum are worth listening to. But while once more the political world, and political correctness, will be slammed for neglecting men, and changes will be called for, no group or organisation emerges that could actually institute such change.

And so we will have another few days, perhaps a couple of weeks, where organisers and/or speakers can bask in the glory of being quoted in the media before patting each other on the back for a job well done and going back to business as usual.

Frankly, who needs it?

After the summit:

Christchurch think tank issues call to address issue of gender balance before it swings in the opposite direction

Major social problems are being forecast, as women increasingly break through the career glass ceiling and take on top jobs.

A Men’s Issues summit in Christchurch has heard nearly 60 percent of tertiary students are now women.

Massey University’s Centre for Public Policy Evaluation director Stuart Birks says in two decades women in senior management positions could outnumber men.

Under the heading: Experts reject theory of male early-life crisis , Keri Welham notes:

New Zealand experts have dismissed a British study that claims men are more likely to suffer an early-life crisis than the traditional mid-life variety.

Then a passing mention of the Men’s Issues Summit:

The pressures facing men were canvassed at a summit in Christchurch on Friday. Featuring outspoken Labour MP John Tamihere, the summit looked at issues such as violence and boys lagging behind girls in education.

Rex McCann, director of an Auckland-based support group, Essentially Men, told The Press the supposed new early-life crisis phenomenon would not replace the “mid-life transition”, a recognised identity crisis that hits men in their 40s.

“You can’t have an identity crisis until you’ve got your identity formed,” he said.

Bradford’s Repeal of s59 Criminalises all Parents

Filed under: Law & Courts — JohnPotter @ 11:13 am

Press Release: Society For Promotion Of Community Standards Inc.
Bradford’s Repeal of s. 59 Criminalises all Parents

Ms Bradford’s private members bill – the Crimes (Abolition of Force as a Justification for Child Discipline) Amendment Bill — that repeals section 59 of the Crimes Act 1961, was referred to the Justice and Electoral Committee last week following its first reading. Ms Bradford is no doubt well intentioned in wanting to address the serious problem she calls “the culture of violence” against children in our country. However, the Society believes the repeal of s. 59 will do nothing to address the root causes or shocking symptoms of this violence. Instead it will have a seriously negative impact on many families whose parents seek to and effectively apply good parenting techniques in the discipline of their children.

Ms Bradford and her supporters such as Ms Beth Wood, spokeswoman for UNICEF and anti-smacking group Epoch (End Physical Punishment of Children), Dr Cindy Kiro, Children’s Commissioner and Kaye Crowther, Plunket president, are determined to remove all legal protections to good parents who choose to smack their kids for serious wrongdoing as a means of discipline. The Explanatory note to the bill states that “the repeal of section 59 ought not revive any old common law justification, excuse or defence [for the use of “reasonable force” including smacking] that the provision may have codified.”

The vast majority of New Zealand parents deeply love their children, do all they can to correctly discipline their children so they learn that there are consequences to wrongdoing and abhor all forms of child abuse and violence against children. It is these outstanding loving parents who would be criminalised if Ms Bradford’s bill became law. She and her misguided supporters deliberately conflate the controlled and measured use of smacking with “abuse” and “violence”. By the fallacious substitution of some pejorative noun such as “hitting”, “violence”, “assault” or “abuse” for “smacking”, they have attempted to subvert the use of language. Their linguistically strained rhetoric is dishonest.


Powered by WordPress

Skip to toolbar