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The Standard

All hail RBNZ independence! – Armstrong

Written By: - Date published: 10:32 am, October 5th, 2013 - 94 comments
Categories: capitalism, exports, housing, monetary policy - Tags:

Old man Armstrong’s out on the Herald’s front lawn this morning, shaking his fist and telling those bloody kids in Labour to stop questioning whether the Reserve Bank is doing the right thing. They should sit quietly and accept whatever the Bank decides to do. This is called ‘consensus’, apparently. Problem is, Armstrong provides no justification for complete RB independence.

His entire argument is: it’s been that way for 20 years so it must continue to be that way forever, regardless of whether it works or not. He says:

“With Labour also committed to making the Reserve Bank take heed of exchange rate fluctuations, Cunliffe has to avoid leaving the impression that Labour’s answer to every economic problem is to fiddle with the Reserve Bank’s mandate – and thereby neutering the institution in the process”

John, you’ve failed to make any argument as to why the Reserve Bank shouldn’t be neutered. Why should we all bow-down to the Reserve Bank like it’s some neoliberal god? Why is complete independence – a concept that’s only two decades old – sacrosanct?

Let’s face it, the Bank is a disaster. The two decades of the modern Reserve Bank have seen a string of housing bubbles, diving high-value exports due to a high dollar, high unemployment and low wage growth, and rising international debt. Not only failed to fix these problems, it’s made them worse.

It’s prime tool is the OCR. Even working perfectly, the OCR works by punishing every mortgage holder and business in the country with higher interest rates when inflation goes up, whether or not the punished sector is at fault.

But, in reality, the OCR has the most impact on the economy via the exchange rate – ie. when housing gets out of control, the RB raises the OCR, which forces interest rates up, which attracts hot money from overseas boosting the exchange rate and strangling our exporters. Ironically, this just brings in more cheap credit from overseas to fund the housing bubble. For a decade now, we have had some of the highest interest rates in the developed world leading to a near-permanently over-valued dollar, and it’s killing the economy without fixing the housing bubble.

When the Bank, finally, tried to add a new tool, LVRs, it stuffed up by punishing first home buyers the most. Sensible tweaks, like excluding first home buyers (easily done as it’s already done for the Kiwisaver deposit subsidy) and limiting LVRs to problem housing markets were ignored in favour of blanket punishment.

So, what has the Bank done to earn a free-pass from every government to do whatever the hell it likes? As far as I can see, all its done in its 20 years of independence is kill our exporting industry, help us rack up massive foreign debt, and failed to tackle successive housing bubbles.

But no, Armstrong says that Labour should just keep quiet. “some kind of consensus between the two main parties would be of considerable assistance to the Reserve Bank if they stopped questioning its efforts to cool a dangerously overheated property market as it sees fit”. His argument would be a lot stronger if he wasn’t arguing for a failed institution to be allowed to continue to make mistakes in peace.

94 comments on “All hail RBNZ independence! – Armstrong”

  1. ianmac 1

    Didn’t Winston get into trouble a decade or so ago for advocating Reserve Bank Reform?

  2. Bill 2

    That ‘independence’ is merely an extension of international financial institutions into national political spheres. There is and has been nothing ‘independent’ about any of these reserve banks that governments relinquished control over through the 80s and whenever.

    And there’s been no accountability either. Which is great for the international and anti-democratic institutions who’s prescriptions ‘independent’ reserve banks follow.

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    Armstrong is WAAAY out of his depth. Globally, “reserve bank independence” has ushered in a period of massive financial system instability, asset price bubbles, and global financialisation. It has not been a good period for 80% of NZers.

    Further, we should note that direct market intervention, something that central banks never anticipated doing as part of their role, is now and every day occurrence in Japan, USA, China, UK, Eurozone.

    Add to that the fact that our Reserve Bank is a proponent of macro-economic theories which are highly flawed and largely based on the neo-lib assumptions of market equilibrium and market efficiency, and Armstrong proves that he is two or three decades out of date.

    And stop talking to your Reserve Bank contacts, John. They are as out of date as you are.

    • Rogue Trooper 3.1

      where President Xi Jinping and the Beijing government goes, investment flows.
      (maybe we could start our own newspaper and clear a few trees).

    • Saarbo 3.2


      “But, in reality, the OCR has the most impact on the economy via the exchange rate – ie. when housing gets out of control, the RB raises the OCR, which forces interest rates up, which attracts hot money from overseas boosting the exchange rate and strangling our exporters. Ironically, this just brings in more cheap credit from overseas to fund the housing bubble. ”

      This quote from “Eddies” article is spot on the mark, but I guess Armstrong has never worked for an export company which has had to close down plants and make people redundant because export volume has disappeared due to the exchange rate. I worked for a business in the early 2000’s that was exporting manufactured product to China and Taiwan. This same manufacturing business is now struggling to compete against cheap $US denominated imports in its own domestic market.

  4. tc 4

    Oh dear, grandad has a rant about the good old days. Reserve bank govenors are appointed by political parties arent they and treasury is full of nat contractors with a former analyst as our finance minister.

    Go back to your quill and pen some more archaic thinking grandad, we expect no less.

    • I should point out that until very recently, Treasury was actually run by a Labour supporter, so it’s not really about what party affiliations the staff have, it’s about the neoliberal, pro-Trade Anarchy (as opposed to fair trade) culture that Treasury has.

      We shouldn’t be opposed to sound budget advice, but it should use more realistic assumptions and not have a practical rather than ideological culture. Treasury should be about evidence and results, not about economic dogma.

      • Finbar 4.1.1

        Matthew,its about value and what you value your being.They say, that if you have a home that you wish to own,in the main centers,where the jobs are, you have to be scratching 80 thousand to service your 30 year debt,on a 400 thousand debt,and after your service, would make your ownership and its service, to afford one of those flash boats in the harbour for your house value.They say that if this unregulated cat gets his way,your mortgage for your 400,000. debt will increase by $340 per week with a eight per cent loan rate.But hey,capitals rules always profits no matter the damage.

        • Rogue Trooper

          if interest rates rise to the 8% forecast by the end of 2015, a mortgage on a ‘typical’ 400+K initial home is likely to rise $400 / month; some will go to the wall.

          • Colonial Viper

            many will go to the wall, including the negatively geared types.

            And it’s not going to go to 8% that is BS. ZIRP is here to stay. If the retail banks want to push mortgage rates up to 8%, the Government will intervene through Kiwibank and re-finance it all back to 6.75%. And still make a killing for the tax payer.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.2

        We shouldn’t be opposed to sound budget advice,

        Which you can’t possibly get from Treasury because of their adherence to the neo-liberal paradigm.

  5. rhinocrates 5

    Armstrong would be out of his depth in a puddle.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 5.1

      The crazy part of Armstrongs claims is the RBNZ Act , allows such policy fiddles!

      “The Reserve Bank Act requires that price stability be defined in a specific and public contract, negotiated between the government and the Reserve Bank. This is called the Policy Targets Agreement (PTA). The current PTA, signed in September 2012,….”

      I think every new government gets its own PTA, and its revised as a matter of course every few years


      So its fair to say the RBNZ is independent only in the sense of meeting the government of the days targets

  6. greywarbler 6

    The Reserve Bank is independent – of what or whom? When it was first touted it was the general idea that politicians were the most powerful and likely to interfere with personal agendas in the proper controlling of the economy on behalf of an enterprising economy run to high standards of business nous and regulation. So far so good. When inflation controls using high interest rates in the 1980’s took house interest to 18 % it was horrific. The Reserve Bank instructed to keep inflation to near zero, also had disastrous effects. Now interest rates are set at a reasonable rate but RB is trying to use inflationary controls on interest rates for housing which is I think, not included in the Consumer Price Index calculations. And it will upset the healthy earning part of our economy, encouraging higher foreign speculation from those drawing on low-rate USA capital to place it in NZ currency and get the easy middleman profit.

    This unwillingness to control housing inflation, and to look squarely at the cause is part of inadequate aspects of systems in our economy. making easy profits because of the high capital rise (up 7% since August in Auckland I heard someone say this week on radionz),

    Now we know that politicians are happy to give up their power and control levers, for payments or ‘free’ gifts that seem satisfactory to them. The Reserve Bank operates to a recipe provided for cooking for mass catering for hundreds of millions, and we end up with a lot of wasted resource that does not reach the home table.

    Someone mentioned that the new chap after Alan Bollard would be more conservative than him. Apparently that means that he and his team spend all their time in a bunker deep under the capital where they can get clear communication lines to their core source of thought. And they hardly have to go up into the real world at all. Probably they are planning to build underground tunnels that financial workers can walk along as the oil-rich companies in I think Houston, Texas have done. They are air-conditioned so everyone can be really cool when the heat is on at the surface.

    A British speaker on radionz this morning Dame Margaret Drabble expressed bewilderment and anxiety about how the financial forces seem to be uncontrollable there, no viable action can be taken to restrain and govern them, and their housing is rising unaffordably too. When all the housing will be out of ordinary people’s reach, there will be little activity in business as larger amounts of income go on housing and basics, and so the pirates trading in the other necessities for life, food and water will cause the prices to go sky-high, and the mega corporates will fight
    over the spoils and make share raids on each other.

  7. Saarbo 7

    What are Armstrong’s credentials to make these claims? and how do they compare to David Cunliffe and David Parker’s credentials. (I guess what I’m trying to say is, what the f$%# does half arsed right wing NZ herald political commentator know about these things? Way out of his depth)

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      what the f$%# does half arsed right wing NZ herald political commentator know about these things?

      Just the slogans. He sure as hell doesn’t know anything about economics. Not that that’s surprising I suppose, neither do the economists.

    • Finbar 7.2

      Capital and its market value Saarbo,with its uncontroled usury.

  8. muzza 8

    Leaving aside Armstrong is simply an agent mouthpiece, seeking to cover up the deeds of his master primary financial tools BIS/FED/BoA/BoJ/RBNZ/BoI et al, it is likely that Armstrong has no idea about the global financial markets, and it is possible he is no longer writing his own articles, at all!

    Was there any mention of the Office Of Debt Management, which is the key interlink, unelected and unrestrained!

    Quite something that Kiwis are happy to parrot that “interest rates are sooo low”, yet still the highest in the western world, so there is little that joe kiwi will resist, nor bend over for!

    BTW – Interest rates and FX rates have been divorced for quite some period of time, so while it is true there is a correlation in local impacts by way of changes to the OCR, the NZD is manipulated independently to the OCR for a myriad of reasons!

    Top ten most traded currency for how long now, versus what ranking of global sized economy!

    Edit: Armstong calling for an end to the Red/Blue sham, with plea of a “grand coalition”, is about the only honest reference be had made of late!

    • Rogue Trooper 8.1

      Impressive, or Very Impressive?

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        The scary thing is that it’s actually true.

        • Rogue Trooper

          the picture went with a documentary on the bank’s production of money, yet I lost it’s location.

          • Draco T Bastard

            There’s a few such documentaries around now. Here’s a good page.

            The fact that the private banks create money ex nihilo is slowly becoming common knowledge. Once it does become common knowledge then we’ll have that revolution that Henry Ford predicted.

            • Colonial Viper

              To help people get their heads around the idea, thinking of banks creating bank deposits (instead of “creating money”) can be easier.

              Let’s say you take out a mortgage for $250,000 from Westpac. You now owe Westpac $250,000 (i.e. a promise to pay them $250,000 back plus fees plus interest etc.)

              Westpac electronically increments the value of your savings account upwards by $250,000.

              The Westpac balance sheet stays completely balanced: on the liabilities side is the extra $250K deposit they have generated for you. On the asset side is your promise to pay back the $250K debt you owe the bank.

            • Tamati

              The fractional reserve system is no big secret. Every economics 101 student has be taught it for the last 50 years!

              • Draco T Bastard

                Yep and it’s wrong.

                • Tamati

                  It’s a misconception that banks “create” money though. Most depositors know that the money they invest in a bank in lent out by the bank not stored in a Gringotts style vault under the ground. It’s not created, it’s just recognized in two places at once.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Totally incorrect if you are talking about the major banks, and it fails to take into account the creation of the international central banking system.

                    In other words, banks no longer rely on depositors for funds day to day, especially when they have the Federal Reserve system.

                    Your comment is only correct for “savings and loans” or “building society” type institutions.

                    • Tamati

                      RBNZ requires all commercial banks to hold a certain amount of domestic deposits as a proportion of their balance sheet. Thus, if global credit markets shut down, our banks would still stay open. They do however bridge the savings/lending gap through international credit markets.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You’re talking about the CFR (Core Funding Ratio). It’s a completely different concept to the idea of “reserves” as used in the outdated “fractional reserve banking” approach.

                      The fact that you have mixed this up suggests that your understanding of central banking regulation is not complete.

                    • Phil


                      Your comment is only correct for “savings and loans” or “building society” type institutions.

                      That’s incorrect.

                      The process, accounting treatment, and balance sheet outcome by which S&L’s, Building Societies, and Credit Unions, generate loans is exactly the same as the example you give above for Westpac. The outcome for “money” is fundamentally no different.

                      While it’s true to say that private banks ‘create’ money, it ignores that publicly owned banks, mututals, credit unions, and finance companies all engage in the same activity.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      While it’s true to say that private banks ‘create’ money, it ignores that publicly owned banks, mututals, credit unions, and finance companies all engage in the same activity.

                      Can you please provide a technical or textbook reference, author, or academic which/who describes the equivalence between bank activities in credit (or deposit) creation and say what a finance company or credit union does.

                      I don’t believe it to be the case at all and would like to know where you got the idea from.

                      My view is that finance companies eg. Hanover Finance, can only lend a dollar out to someone if they already have that dollar on hand to loan out i.e. no additional monies or deposit is created.

                    • Phil

                      Hi CV,

                      Can you please provide a technical or textbook reference, author, or academic which/who describes the equivalence between bank activities in credit (or deposit) creation and say what a finance company or credit union does.

                      Without wanting to be glib about it, the answer to that question is: any Accounting 101 textbook you choose to pick up.

                      It’s technically incorrect to say that banks ‘create money’. What they do, when making a loan to you or I, is record a series of accounting entires today that represent future commitments to repay a financial transaction. By international standards and convention (see the IMF’s Monetary and Financial Statistics Manual 2000) we choose to call those bank liabilities ‘money’ because of the connections those transactions have to other macro-economic variables like inflation, GDP, and the balance of payments.

                      To give you an example, lets say you started up a credit union with some of your own capital, and term deposits you got from the public. Your opening balance sheet might look like this:

                      Cash $200


                    • Phil

                      Gah – did my completed comment end up somewhere retrievable?


                    • Phil

                      Ok, lets try this again…

                      To give you an example, lets say you started up a credit union with some of your own capital and term deposits you got from the public. Your opening balance sheet might look like this:

                      Cash $200

                      Capital invested by owners $100
                      Term deposits from Public $100

                      In this example, your monetary liabilities (that is: funds that a depositor is able to withdraw to purchase a good or service) is $100. We’ll leave the RBNZ’s physical cash liability out of this, for simplicity.

                      Then you go and make a loan to a person who want to buy a house. You lend them $100, which they deposit into a transaction account with you while they’re awaiting house sale/settlement. Now your balance sheet is:

                      Cash $200
                      Loans to borrowers $100

                      Capital invested by owners $100
                      Term deposits from Public $100
                      Transaction deposit $100

                      Your monetary liabilities have doubled. There is now $200 that could be withdrawn and used for the purchase of goods and services. Total money supply, because of your lending, is now $200.

                      Next day, the borrower settles on the house purchase. They withdraw the cash and hand it over to the seller, who deposits the cash in a different bank.

                      Your balance sheet is now:
                      Cash $100
                      Loans to borrowers $100

                      Capital invested by owners $100
                      Term deposits from Public $100

                      BUT there is another financial institution that received the cash from the seller. Their balance sheet has an extra $100 in cash and $100 in deposit liabilities. Total money in this economy is STILL $200.

                      It doesn’t matter if the lending institution is a private bank, or a credit union, or a public bank, or a finance company. The accounting process which records the initiation of a loan creates liabilities and assets. The liabilities are identified as money solely because we have the ability to engage a third party in a transaction with them.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Nah, but that’s not what happens in real life.

                      No one withdraws in cash the funds they receive from taking out a mortgage, in order to deposit those funds in the vendor’s bank account.

                      So using your example:

                      Let’s say the mortgagee needs a $500 loan (not a $100 loan) in order to buy the house they want. But the savings and loan style/credit union type institution has only $200 cash on hand. How does the institution manage that situation?

                      And let’s say that the mortgagee wants those funds, once they have been placed in their bank account, transferred over to the vendor’s account at a different institution in order to complete the sale and purchase of the house. And as I said, without walking the cash over to the other bank. How does the institution manage that situation?

                      It’s technically incorrect to say that banks ‘create money’.

                      Hey I’m quite happy to have a detailed discussion with you as to what counts as “money” and the hierarchy of what civilians usually consider as “money”, but that’s a whole different discussion.

                      Without wanting to be glib about it, the answer to that question is: any Accounting 101 textbook you choose to pick up.

                      What you’ve described are balance sheet operations. Yes that is accountancy 101.

                      What is not in accountancy 101 are the systems which enable deposit accounts accessible to the financial transaction and settlement system to be incremented or decremented in value. Neither you or I can start up a finance company or building society which has that system, even though you and I can start up an excel spreadsheet to show numbers moving around on a balance sheet.

                      So a bank creating deposits is not simply a balance sheet operation, although it has balance sheet implications.

                    • Phil

                      Nah, but that’s not what happens in real life.

                      No one withdraws in cash the funds they receive from taking out a mortgage, in order to deposit those funds in the vendor’s bank account.

                      A blog comment thread is not a particularly efficient way to get into a lot of detail about banking, so the example I described (using cash) was deliberately as simple as I could make it and still try to get the point across.

                      You could replace ‘cash’ in those examples with: electronic deposit with another bank; government bond; or any number of other “liquid assets” that might be held by a bank or credit union. The process would still hold true.

                      Additionally, the second balance sheet I wrote down isn’t usually visible to you or I as a borrower. In practice the bank would provide the borrower with a commitment to lend, and then transact straight from #1 to #3 instantaneously when the sale was settled. For the non-bankers that might have been reading that post, #2 helps to explain the logic of getting between those two balance sheets and how money gets created.

                      Let’s say the mortgagee needs a $500 loan (not a $100 loan) in order to buy the house they want. But the savings and loan style/credit union type institution has only $200 cash on hand. How does the institution manage that situation?

                      There are a few things that could happen, but firstly the CU or bank would acknowledge that it doesn’t have the funds available to make the loan and remain solvent – this is also connected to the (incorrect) temporal comment you made somewhere else in this thread.

                      But if the CU or bank really thinks that you’re a good customer and wants to lend you $500, then it has to do (again, simplified examples) one of two things:
                      1) get more term deposits from the public
                      2) issue a wholesale financial market instrument (e.g. a bond) that another bank or investor is willing to buy

                      In either case, the value of the banks liabilities increase (recognising the deposit or bond has to eventually be paid back) and assets increase (becuase they’ve received cash or some other kind of liquid asset) which they are then able to give you access to to make your purchase.

                      And let’s say that the mortgagee wants those funds, once they have been placed in their bank account, transferred over to the vendor’s account at a different institution in order to complete the sale and purchase of the house. And as I said, without walking the cash over to the other bank. How does the institution manage that situation?

                      In practice, all of these transactions happen via electronic payment systems. For example, you and I might make dozens of EFTPOS transactions during a day, which will inevitably be between our own bank account and accounts held by retailers with different banks. The banks (both for their own account and as an agent for other financial institutions that you have accounts with) keep track of all these different payments going back and forward, then settle the net amount with each other at the end of the day. They have funds available on hand (actually it’s a deposit with the RBNZ) that are debited and credited for this purpose.

                    • Phil

                      What is not in accountancy 101 are the systems which enable deposit accounts accessible to the financial transaction and settlement system to be incremented or decremented in value. Neither you or I can start up a finance company or building society which has that system, even though you and I can start up an excel spreadsheet to show numbers moving around on a balance sheet.

                      So a bank creating deposits is not simply a balance sheet operation, although it has balance sheet implications.

                      Do I, personally, have the technical skills to create bank or credit union systems and infrastructure?

                      Could I register with the companies office and start a credit union or building society?

                      Could I engage with the New Zealand Association of Credit Unions, who provide technical assistance to credit unions all around the country, and leverage off their skills and experience to support my start-up CU?

                      Could I then take deposits from the public, lend to borrowers (managing the consequent credit and liquidity risks prudently) and in doing so create liabilities that would be recognised as money?

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    No, the misconception is that banks loan out money that is deposited. If they did that then you wouldn’t be able to get the money back out after you deposited it because it would’ve been loaned out.

                    It’s not created, it’s just recognized in two places at once.

                    No, it’s created – go read the page I linked to above.

              • Paul

                Not sure Armstrong has a clue about economics.
                He should watch this film.
                Money as Debt.

              • Colonial Viper

                The fractional reserve system is no big secret. Every economics 101 student has be taught it for the last 50 years!

                The fractional reserve system has not been used in most parts of the world for up to a 100 years now. Hong Kong is one of the few countries which still uses it. You need to update yourself.

                • Tamati

                  It has been on this planet for the last few decades. What planet are you on?

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    The Fractional Reserve system is what is taught – it’s not how it works.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      DTB: correct. Fractional reserve banking theory is just one of many parts of business school education which is dead out of date.

                      Tamati as you are so confident: please name 5 countries which still use fractional reserve banking (as opposed to central reserve banking with flexible reserve limits).

                    • ghostwhowalksnz


                      Westpac first has to borrow the money from someone else, its depositors, overseas etc before it lends to you.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Westpac first has to borrow the money from someone else, its depositors, overseas etc before it lends to you.

                      No, that is temporally inaccurate.

                      Westpac lends the money first and then looks for where to get it from later. In other words: the bank creates the deposit first, then looks for the reserves it needs afterwards.

                    • Tamati

                      Banks are constantly lending money and taking deposits. They don’t match an individual depositor with and individual lender. That’s why we have banks, to act as an intermediary between lenders and borrowers.

                      The banks simply maintain an appropriate reserve ratio by adjusting the amount they lend/receive.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Just stop it mate. You are up to 100 years out of date. Listen the fuck up please.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Read the third paragraph.

                      I’ve already read it and I’ve done the university thing. Thankfully, I wasn’t so stupid as to continue to believe the myth.

                      How about you update yourself by reading all the information on this page and the accompanying pages and videos?

                    • Tamati

                      Clearly I hit a raw nerve! Calm down dear, it’s not like the banks are adding fluoride to our water or anything like that. Perhaps it’s the Auckland water that’s getting to my brain?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Dr Steve Keen explains aspects of it for you Tamati, if you are interested.


                      Clearly I hit a raw nerve! Calm down dear,

                      Take some responsibility and stop parroting out of date theories, and now also acting like a condescending prick.

                    • Read the talk page, Tamati. A few ill-informed users are keeping dumb statements like the one you quoted on that arcticle by edit-trolling it, wheras it doesn’t really accurately reflect economic theory from either the Right or the Left.

                    • Tamati

                      No I don’t have half a day to read all that.

                      Steve Keen, is a pretty radical economist. Hardly inline with mainstream thinking. Perhaps he’s right and the business schools are all wrong, and the fluoride action network is right and the Dental schools are wrong.

                      Regardless, Labour won’t change that RBNZ, all they’ll do is make them consider unemployment when setting the OCR.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      No I don’t have half a day to read all that.

                      Steve Keen, is a pretty radical economist. Hardly inline with mainstream thinking. Perhaps he’s right and the business schools are all wrong

                      1) Thanks for proving you have no real interest in what actually happens in the banking system. BTW I went through the article in about 20 minutes.

                      2) Steve Keen is a heterodox economist doing ground breaking quantitative, empirical and simulation work with research partners all over the world.

                      3) Yes, the business schools are all wrong, most of them teach their undergrads vats of toxic laced Kool-Aid. That’s what we’ve been trying to tell you.

                      “Mainstream thinking” in macro is completely falsifiable Tamati and has led the global financial system to the brink. Time for you to get up to date instead of spreading your masters’ lies.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Hardly inline with mainstream thinking.

                    Mainstream economic thinking happens to be the problem but even mainstream economists are starting to realise that the present teaching of the fractional reserve system is bunk. I tried to find the Bank of England economist that said so but couldn’t. I believe it may be on the positivemoney.org.uk site. Then there’s the IMF economist recommending that we go to a full reserve currency and drop the bank money as it’s the bank money that’s causing the exponential debt increases.

                    BTW, the only raw nerve that seems to have been hit is yours – you’re the one that dropped to ad hominem attacks.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      BTW, the only raw nerve that seems to have been hit is yours – you’re the one that dropped to ad hominem attacks.

                      well, so did I :twisted:

                    • Tamati

                      Well I’m certainly glad I bumped into you two vanguards here and now. We’ll see what happens. I highly doubt DC the messiah will change a thing when he gets his hands on the Treasury benches. It’s smart politics though.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Appreciate all your efforts to spread disinformation on the banking and financial systems, Tamati.

                    • Tamati

                      The feeling is mutual.

                  • For those of you confused by Tamati’s misinformation here are three video’s you might want to watch to inform yourself about the Reserve bank system and the creation of money out of thin air which we have to repay with our hard slog and interest on top:

                    Money as debt 1
                    the Money Masters
                    And the Creature of Jekyll Island

                    • ghostwhowalksnz

                      A quick look at Westpacs financial accounts shows , not up to date.
                      (1) Assets , mostly are loans they have made to others , $77 Billion

                      (2) Liabilities, mostly money they have borrowed from others $72 billion

                      Not much fractional banking going on there, as they have to have $5 bill of their own money in the kitty

                    • Colonial Viper

                      What about their off-balance sheet assets and liabilities, GWWNZ? Which we have seen revealed through the GFC are often larger than all the on-balance sheet items put together?

                      Also, what assurance do you have that those assets and liabilities that we can see are all accurately marked to market?

                      And one last point – you do know that a bank creating a new deposit through a loan automatically creates a balancing entry on the balance sheet? The new deposit is entered as a liability whereas the loan is entered as an equivalent asset.

                      Just because you see assets and liabilities as almost equal doesn’t mean that they are anything more than created book keeping entries.

  9. bad12 9

    Yes when the Reserve Bank Governor or that dribbling fool from the Herald John Armstrong can explain in a few logical sentences why someone in Invercargill should be made unemployed because Auckland house prices are over-inflated i may even find the time to listen,

    Until such time i can only spare my spittle for such economic Neanderthals who foisted on this country Legislation that looks from here to be simply a ‘protection racket’ for the shareholding class,

    The equation is this, Neo-liberal policies of laissez fairre claiming the market as the final arbiter created in the city of Auckland a gross shortage of housing by allowing open slather immigration and not providing an iota of planning for accommodating such an inflow, leaving this instead to ‘the market’, which of course FAILED under such an influx,

    Finally, after the profiteers have fed mightily on such a clusterf**k, the Reserve Bank Governor threatens the employment of 1000’s, not to mention the living standards of the rest of New Zealand with His current threat to raise interest rates across the country penalizing those who have in no way added to the cause of this mess,

    If interest rates must be raised to cool the over-inflated Auckland housing market then the Governor of the Reserve Bank should raise the interest rates for houses in the City of Auckland,

    If the Governor of the Reserve Bank claims He cannot raise only the interest rates on houses in Auckland leaving the rest of the economy alone by NOT raising interest rates on anything else, anywhere else, i suggest the Governor of the Reserve Bank should be removed in favor of someone that can…

    • greywarbler 9.1

      There are precedents for fashioning policies just for Auckland City so the RB could do so too. We are always hearing about Auckland being the power house of the country and needs this or that. While Gisborne is a big food raising area and doesn’t need this or that.

      So right, tailor policies to assist powerhouse areas to function well using economic theory which will be known already, and strengthen functioning areas to increase their commercial activity to be mini powerhouses. RB – my unofficial consultants fee – $1,000.00 pay to
      anti-TPPA fund raising site. (For top of my mind unresearched data, which is the sort of stuff most of government policy is based on.)

      • bad12 9.1.1

        My view is it is the economics of ‘the chimps’, Auckland house price over-inflation IF such over-inflation is to be the target of interest rates rises should be separated from the rest of the economic picture and such rates applies solely to that City,

        Christchurch right at the point of the first major earthquake should have also been separated from the overall economic picture and been declared a special economic zone for the purposes of the rebuild,

        There is no real economic growth involved in rebuilding that city it is simply replacing growth that was destroyed, and parts of the rest of the economy should not be punished through any perceived but false inflation from that rebuild,

        We need far smarter economics and economists, what would the rate of inflation be if Auckland house prices and the Christchurch rebuild were factors addressed outside of the current means of primitive bean counting,

        i would suggest that rate of inflation would be something akin to .02%-.07% and if the Reserve Bank Governor is suggesting that we all get kicked in the nuts with interest rate hikes over the whole economy because of the Auckland and Christchurch factors when any logical person viewing such would simply say to address both those cities outside of national inflation figures, then i suggest we find a new Reserve Bank Governor…

      • xtasy 9.1.2


        “We are always hearing about Auckland being the power house of the country and needs this or that. While Gisborne is a big food raising area and doesn’t need this or that.”

        In my honest opinion, this talk about Auckland being the “power house” is a lot of self serving, arrogant garbage that mayor Len Brown and other senior Auckland politicians, business and other stakeholders love to go on about. And I say this as a person who has lived here over two decades.

        What does the Auckland “economy” actually consist of, and what does it “produce”? A look at various sources reveals some interesting information, which exposes that most is more or less “services” that are provided by some Aucklanders to others (businesses, public providers and invidivuals). The Port of Auckland is not so much an export port, it is primarily and IMPORT port, for goods MADE elsewhere.

        Manufacturing here is only taking place in some places, and we know how Fisher and Paykel and others have partly closed factories and moved off-shore. There is a lot of transport happening, but most is private motor cars and trucks, the latter transporting goods that were made elsewhere, from Auckland or to Auckland. There is an inland “port” in South Auckland that services mainly goods transported here from Tauranga and Whangarei (much for on-transportation).

        Naturally there is the international and domestic airport, and there are hotels and backpackers accommodating tourists. There are a few headquarters of major businesses and banks, there are courts, administrations and not much else.

        A BIG part of the economy is the inflated inner Auckland housing market. Now is that the kind of “economic activity” this country needs? Most this inflated talk about the Auckland economy only serves the large Auckland middle class to feel important, as it is all about their buying and selling of homes, their “investment” in homes, selling homes and “services” to new migrants, their importing foreign goods, their housing foreign students as boarders, their education investment, their personal jobs, their consumerist shopping from retailers, and their driving around in cars half the days, to get from A to B to C.

        That is the f**king “Auckland Economy”, at least the bulk of it in my eyes, not much else. So the provinces have good reasons to be furious at times, as true economic activity should look a bit better than what we have here!




  10. Draco T Bastard 10

    The thing is that high interest rates don’t stop speculation in the housing market. In fact, with all the hot money poring in, it actually feeds it.

    Stop banks from creating money, get rid of the OCR and also stop RBNZ being the lender of last resort (only the government would have access to money created by the RBNZ, specifically, the RBNZ would be charged with creating the money the government needs to spend into the economy) and we’d go a long way to making our economy rational.

    • bad12 10.1

      Unfortunately your prescription would require the politicians to also be rational all the time, a prospect i fear that has as much chance as the proverbial snow flake in hell…

      • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1

        Throw in referenda and the sustainable rate of use of the countries resources and the required rationality of the MPs decreases.

    • Herodotus 10.2

      DTB hot money on its own does not feed the housing market – crap controls feed the market. Place some brakes e.g. Eliminating interest as tax deductible, state housing sub contracting out to private land lords.
      And allowing capital gains to go untaxed when there is no basis for rentals to stand up as a viable trading business. The only reason rentals work IS the capital gains.
      Regulate so that owner occupies have an advantage over private land lords, and that state housing is the 1st alternative as a landlord and that there are sufficient housing stock.

      • Draco T Bastard 10.2.1

        hot money on its own does not feed the housing market

        Didn’t say it was but I believe it to be the main driver.

        The only reason rentals work IS the capital gains.

        Oh, I think you’ll find that people with 10+ houses the capital gains is just icing on the top.

        Eliminating interest as tax deductible

        I’m trying to eliminate interest altogether.

      • Saarbo 10.2.2


      • Colonial Viper 10.2.3

        Herod, I do believe that you are on the right track.

        We need the business of being a landlord (as opposed to being a property speculator who rents out houses in-between flipping them) to be sustainable and attractive, providing fair net returns of 4% to 5% to the investor.

        And the NZ Govt should be a major player in that rental provider market, as well as facilitating the financing and the house price controls which will make it possible.

  11. BrucetheMoose 11

    I stopped reading the Herald regularly a while back due to their rightest slanted garbage and consistently biased views. Not only that, they hardly ever posted my comments. Especially after I said that National was really a club for closet fascists. They’re no fun.

  12. xtasy 12

    “For a decade now, we have had some of the highest interest rates in the developed world leading to a near-permanently over-valued dollar, and it’s killing the economy without fixing the housing bubble.”

    Interest rates in New Zealand have been much higher than in most OECD countries for as long as I can remember, and it goes back at least until the 1990s and also 1980s!

    New Zealand is considered a higher risk lender on the international lending market, given its small size and traditional over-dependence on foreign funds for investment. It seems a bit absurd, as on the other hand New Zealand always gets considered to be one of the most politically and socially “stable” countries. But it is size that matters, and the traditional reliance on capital inflow, which goes back to the early settler’s days, under direct British Crown rule here, has continued.

    What is the greatest problem for New Zealand is the high indebtedness due to private lending for financing real estate purchases. As most of this lending is done by Australian owned banks, a lot of interest and due dividends flow into their coffers, and the pockets of their shareholders. Also do foreign investors here earn their dividends on investment in enterprises that sell goods and services.

    The currency fluctuations, and the often overrated NZ currency is a major issue, and for instance Japanese mums and dads have a habit of investing their currency in NZ dollars, given high earning potential, all propped up by high interest rates.

    All this is little productive, as it disadvantages investment and economical feasibility of local manufacturers, producers in general, and therefore exports. Like with real estate Kiwis also love to import many consumer products, and the high dollar enables the to do this.

    So what we have is continued growth in bulk exports of easily produced mass primary products that appeal to Chinese and a few other consumers, to pay for imports of higher quality value added goods made there. This makes for a primitive, commodity dominated economy, with many flaws.

    Armstrong is in semi retirement from my view, and his articles reflect his somewhat redundant views, shaped by an age that was dominated by neo-liberal dogma and practice. Winston Peters and David Cunliffe are right, the Reserve Bank Act needs amending, so Armstrong is best advised to seek other daytime activities to avoid further embarrassments prior to full retirement.

    • Anne 12.1

      Armstrong is in semi retirement from my view, and his articles reflect his somewhat redundant views, shaped by an age that was dominated by neo-liberal dogma and practice.

      Add to that a debilitating disease that not only cripples the body, it must eventually have a detrimental effect on the mind as well. I give him full credit for persevering through all the tribulations of his condition for as long as he can. He still has something to offer, but some of his analysis work is outdated and falls short of what it once used to be.

      • xtasy 12.1.1

        “Add to that a debilitating disease that not only cripples the body, it must eventually have a detrimental effect on the mind as well.”

        I accept that, Anne, and while some know this, many readers would not, and without possibly being aware of his slowly weakening capacity, I feel concerned that John Armstrong may unintentionally expose himself to harsh criticism and ridicule.

        Hence there will be the time where he will be well advised to perhaps pursue his writing skills in a different forum at a different pace and level of exposure.

        • Anne

          Agree 100% xtasy. I know someone with the same condition and it really is deeply sad to see this once bright and active person reduced to a shell of his former self.

  13. Liberal Realist 13

    Armstrong is just another tool with his ideology firmly stuck in the Chicago school cesspit (Somewhere on Planet Key perhaps?).

    “So, what has the Bank done to earn a free-pass from every government to do whatever the hell it likes? As far as I can see, all its done in its 20 years of independence is kill our exporting industry, help us rack up massive foreign debt, and failed to tackle successive housing bubbles.”

    Eddie, you’ve hit the nail on the head. +10 Since independence 20 years ago almost every move the bank has made, has been to the detriment of ordinary New Zealanders. Of course those that have made enormous amounts of cash via property speculation and the boom / bust cycle want BAU and Armstrong is one of their mouthpieces.

    Labours CTG will certainly help address the imbalance but the issue of a single blunt tool – OCR still needs to be addressed. Why can’t the OCR be pegged against a trade-weighted basket of currencies while wielding more targeted tools to address problem areas of the economy?

    Furthermore retail banks need to have their profit regulated, perhaps by a maximum lending rate above the OCR? Of course in a market economy they have to make a profit but it doesn’t need to be obscene as we’re seeing today.

    The building materials duopoly also needs to be addressed. Material costs for a build a much higher than they should be simply due to lack of competition. QE also needs to be an available tool – I’ve yet to hear a valid argument against..

    As for LVRs, stupid stupid move. Shut out first home buyers leaving more property stock available for those who can stump up a 20% deposit.. As Eddie suggests, it wouldn’t have been hard to apply LVRs to problem markets only. The Government changed Housing NZ’s Welcome Home Loan and Deposit Subsidy easily enough.

  14. Colonial Viper 14

    QE also needs to be an available tool – I’ve yet to hear a valid argument against.

    QE refers to a very specific technique where the Fed buys investment bank assets (often impaired/toxic assets) with newly created money. In doing so, the Fed massively expands its balance sheet on the assets side.

    The problem is that the newly created money is not getting from the Wall St institutions, to Main Street. In the lingo, the “transmission mechanisms” for the money are broken.

    If NZ wanted to create new money in a way to help the economy that ordinary people experience, it wouldn’t use QE, the Government would instead spend that money into circulation buying goods and services from NZ businesses and NZ workers. This is more like what Roosevelt did with the WPA to help end the Great Depression. Hiring 8M or more people into new jobs all over the country. (A massive investment for a country with a population of only 100M at the time).

    *I wrote this reply to an individual who posted quite a good comment, but who seems to have deleted it or had it put into moderation.

    • bad12 14.1

      Yes the American version of expanding the money supply does seem overly complicated, here’s one example of the State producing monies and then adding labour and goods to produce an asset which is of the same value as the monies produced,

      Produce into existence X amount of monies and build with such monies X amount of State houses…

    • Liberal Realist 14.2

      CV, my comment did hit moderation – in fact I thought it had been lost but checking today my comment has been published.

      I’m familiar with QE the US Fed has been engaging in – I should have further clarified in my comment, I wouldn’t suggest NZ engage in a free for all into a stock market black hole as with the US experience.

      As you suggest (QE doesn’t necessarily need to be the mechanism) newly created money should be used to purchase infrastructure / earth quake recovery bonds such as the GP suggestion 12 months ago (not sure if it’s policy?). The CHCH rebuild could be fast tracked with a such a bond purchase and Auckland’s public transport woes could also be addressed.

      [lprent: We tend to be somewhat lackadaisical on the weekends on moderation but that gets cleared every few hours. But releasing comments that went into spam is always slower. Firstly because the anti-system is over 99% accurate and secondly because it is so accurate, I usually only look at it a few times per day. There is no apparent reason for that comment to be auto-spammed apart from style. It does read a wee bit like someone wanting to sell financial services :) ]

      • Draco T Bastard 14.2.1

        newly created money should be used to purchase infrastructure / earth quake recovery bonds

        No need, just spend the money into the economy. Adding bonds to the process just adds complication and unneeded interest.

  15. vto 15

    All hail the great god of capital!

    Imagine if it disappeared?

    No capital. What would we all do. Armstrong is incapable of imagining such a place, common as it has been ….

  16. vto 16

    The war of capital.

    Played out in New Zealand via the reserve bank.

    Played out in the US via the government shutdown.

    Capital is pulling its weight.

    Best we push back. Fuck them. Capital is an apparition. Fuck the capital!

  17. Ad 17

    2 quick provocations.

    1. If Cunliffe wants to break the neoliberal consensus and gain control over our currency and hence our export prices received, then kill the Reserve Bank dead and pull its functions back to Treasury. Interest rate changes made by Cabinet only.

    2. Shift all govt banking business to Kiwibank. This could make Kiwibank offer lower mortgage rates than any of the Aussie banks. And stronger, safer deposits.

    We need a banking system returned to direct accountability by the political order, and designed to strengthen New Zealand’s interests.

  18. tricldrown 18

    The reserve bank act is nothing more than allowing money speculators to continueously plunder our economy taking tax free capital gains for doing nothing more than pushing our dollars value up to artificial highs for their gain while the productive sector is damaged .
    Then because we are not making enough from exports NZers have borrowed massive amounts of debt to buy cheap imports.
    We have lived beyond our means ever since this legislation has been in place.
    A Capital gains tax on profits from money speculation would be a start.
    The housing bubble needs to be dealt to.
    Printing money at the same level as the major trading blocks do and using that printed money to build enough houses to deal to the property bubble.
    This would keep our dollar and interest rates down.

  19. Sable 19

    I’ve met a least one Reserve bank fool and they are just that. Armed with economics masters and PHD degrees (might as well have a degree in fortune telling) they have absolute faith in neo liberal twaddle trotted out by the Chicago school mob and as time has shown their faith is sorely misplaced. Yet do they consider other alternatives, hell no!

    The clown I spoke to was rabid in his support of this economic fairy tale and ranted on for ages when challenged. He certainly had a good knowledge of the global economy and an answer for everything BUT there was little practical basis for his belief in neo liberalism or any real indication he had the ability to credibly influence or change anything. Really just a nerd in a government think tank, big brain but beyond that nothing of substance….

    Not at all surprised by this reaction, no one wants others to find out they are, in fact, clueless…

  20. Rogue Trooper 20

    National Governments minor adjustment responses to housing supply issue:
    -Welcome Home Loans; 15000 over next three years
    -KiwiSaver changes; 20000 to access deposit assistance
    -Auckland Accord; 39000 new homes (5000 consents by Christmas intended) immediately bringing 300 homes at 335-400+K on-stream-Nick Smith.
    appears to be mainly about money supply rather than housing supply.

    Tinkering “mostly at the margins”- Colin James.

    “Easy credit” from overseas QE and financial markets IS washing up here.
    (house prices may face a fall on the back of US stalemate and bank credit changes.).

    “Exempt first-home buyers from new LVR’s”- Phil Twyford

    and an interesting suggestion for discussion from a realty spokesman-
    Have the government underwrite deposit shortfall / balance on new homes constructed for first-home buyers.

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  • Why I am on the left
    (For our opening week, we asked all our contributors to think about why they’re On The Left, and what the next three years holds for the left, the government, and New Zealand.) Post by Jem I am left first and...
    On the Left | 23-10
  • Minister to attend TPP Ministers’ Meeting
    Press Release – New Zealand Government Trade Minister Tim Groser will depart today for Sydney to join Ministers from countries participating in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) for the next round of negotiations.Hon Tim Groser Minister of Trade 24 October 2014...
    Its our future | 23-10
  • On The Nation this weekend
    Press Release – The Nation This weekend on The Nation with dairy prices falling, China growing its agriculture sector, and the environmental costs piling up, we ask the Fonterra chief executive Theo Spierings if New Zealand is too dependent on...
    Its our future | 23-10
  • Agri-Food Producers Call for Strong Outcomes through the TPP
    Press Release – Federated Farmers International Agricultural and Agri-Food Producers Call for Strong Outcomes through the TPP At the round of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations taking place this week in Australia, agri-food producer and processor groups from Canada, Australia …International...
    Its our future | 23-10
  • Grant Robertson is not as much like Joseph Stalin as some would have you th...
    It’s not often you see a New Zealand political figure compared favourably to Stalin, but this is what Chris Trotter has done to that decidedly non-genocidal non-lunatic Grant Robertson.  ...
    Pundit | 23-10
  • National’s failed commodities export strategy exposed
    National's strategy to rely on commodities such as milk powder and logs has been exposed in the September trade figures released today, the Green Party said."National's strategy to hang all economic hope on exporting ever-increasing volumes of milk powder and...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Caution needed on calls to arm police
    There is no justification for routinely arming our police and doing so would change forever the way officers interact with their communities, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “As one of the few organisations distinguished by its unarmed status,...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Govt strains to get tea break law through
    The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“National desperately...
    Labour | 23-10
  • How low can you go? Mining the depths
    The company says there will be economic benefits, which the EEZ Act says the EPA must consider, but even these benefits are in doubt. The royalties while not set will be tiny, the profits will flow offshore, and whatever phosphate...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Government loses the affordable housing race
    Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks he can deliver affordable housing to Cantabrians on his current figures, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Minister’s announcement that the Government will build 237 new homes, most of which will...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Labour’s thoughts with Canadians
    Labour has offered its sympathies to the family and friends of the Canadian soldier who died in what appears to be a premeditated and unprovoked attack while standing at guard at the Ottawa National War Memorial. “Our thoughts are also...
    Labour | 23-10
  • What next for TVNZ? Outsourcing the news?
    Television New Zealand’s decision to outsource Māori and Pacific programming is a real blow to the notion that our state broadcaster is a public broadcaster, says Labour. “CEO Kevin Kenrick has said today that TVNZ has ‘a very long and...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Green Party expresses sympathy for Canadian shooting victims
    The Green Party expressed its solidarity with Canadians and the Canadian Parliament today, offering its sympathy for family and friends of the soldier killed in the attack. "Our thoughts are with all those caught up in the shooting in Canada...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Prime Minister must honour his promise
    It’s time for John Key to honour his promise to the Pike River families, says Labour MP Damien O’Connor.  “International mine experts have confirmed the view of WorkSafe New Zealand and many miners on the West Coast that it is...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Kevin Hague questions the Minister of Health about Katherine Rich’s c...
    KEVIN HAGUE to the Minister of Health : Is he satisfied that there is no conflict of interest in the head of the Food and Grocery Council, Katherine Rich, being a board member of the Health Promotion Agency; if so,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Kennedy Graham to the Prime Minister on the Deployment of New Zealand Speci...
    Dr KENNEDY GRAHAM to the Prime Minister: Does he stand by his statement that the risks to New Zealand from any commitment of military assistance to counter Islamic State militants in Iraq would be "no greater than I think the...
    Greens | 22-10
  • EPA finds Shell Oil illegally drilled two wells
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded that Shell Todd Oil Services (STOS) broke the law by drilling two wells without a marine consent off the coast of Taranaki, the Green Party said today. The EPA conducted an inspection of...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    News that Aucklanders overtook Wellingtonians as the biggest train users is further evidence the Government needs to start work on the Auckland City Rail Link now, the Green Party said today.Auckland Transport said today that in the year to September,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Tea breaks gone by lunch time
    Labour is calling for an eleventh hour reprieve to employment law changes which could see thousands of Kiwi workers not covered by collective agreements lose their smoko breaks, its spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“How cynical that on the...
    Labour | 21-10
  • Metiria Turei to lead fight on feeding hungry children
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira.Mrs Turei, who leads the Green Party's work on child poverty, will pick up Mr...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Otago dairy farms fail basics
    I’m really privileged to take on the responsibility of the water portfolio. Eugenie Sage has done excellent work in this area in the last term of parliament and provided a great platform for further work. Last Parliament my bill to...
    Greens | 21-10
  • A mighty totara has fallen across the Tasman
    The New Zealand Labour Party expresses deep sadness at the death of former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, aged 98. “Today a great totara has fallen across the Tasman,” Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says....
    Labour | 21-10
  • Note to National: Must deliver on child poverty
    John Key and his Government will be held to its promise to make child poverty a priority, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “In its priority-setting speech today the Government stated child poverty would be a major focus for...
    Labour | 21-10
  • New Analysis show Government cut tertiary education funding
    New analysis done by the Green Party today shows the Government has made cuts to funding of tertiary education since 2008.Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that between 2009 and 2015 Government funding to Tertiary Institutions dropped by 4...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Students doing it tough as fees rise again
    The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Steven Joyce is shutting a generation...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Key misled New Zealand on Iraq deployment
      John Key was misleading New Zealanders prior to the election when he ruled out New Zealand special forces being deployed to Iraq, says Labour Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff.  “Post-election he has cynically disregarded that by saying that deployment of...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Kevin Hague speaks in the 2014 Address and Reply debate
    Thank you very much, Mr Deputy Speaker, and, like others, can I begin my contribution by congratulating you and the others in the Speaker's team: the Rt Hon David Carter, Lindsay Tisch, and the Hon Trevor Mallard. I also want...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Church congratulated on child poverty stand
    The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.   “I think...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review.  He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban (see further biographical details here). The Review Team...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Pike River Families Group Press Release
    The Families can now but hope that Solid Energy will consider closely the response of the Families’ expert mining advisers, Bob Stevenson and Dave Creedy, and the independent legal advice by Hugh Rennie QC as to why re-entry to the...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • On The Nation this weekend
    This weekend on The Nation… with dairy prices falling, China growing its agriculture sector, and the environmental costs piling up, we ask the Fonterra chief executive Theo Spierings if New Zealand is too dependent on milk powder and if we’ve...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • NZ Government Urged to Do More to Fight Ebola
    As Ebola continues to tear through West Africa, Save the Children NZ is urging the government to do more in the fight against the deadly virus....
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • Korero Mai Ki Ahau – Saturday 25 & Sunday 26 October 2014
    Broadcast on Waatea 603AM Saturday 12.00 - 12.30pm Sunday 12.00 - 12.30pm Both shows repeated 5.00pm – 6.00pm On Sunday...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • Putting whānau foremost in Family Dispute Resolution
    Dispute resolution company, FairWay Resolution, has developed a uniquely New Zealand approach to family dispute resolution (FDR) that is underpinned by the cultural needs and values of the parties to a family dispute. In support of its role as a...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • Anglican Family Care staff to rally industrial action rises
    Public Service Association (PSA) members working at Anglican Family Care (AFC) in Dunedin will hold two rallies in Dunedin next week as they seek a fair pay offer, following a week of low-key industrial action....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Flying Visit for Adventuring Kiwi Socialpreneur
    12 Months on, this former Alexandra barista is changing lives in Buenos Aires Slums with free lunches, music, art, drama and toothbrushes...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • March in Solidarity with Kurdistan Against ISIS Attacks
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan in light of the heinous genocidal attacks in Kobanê by ISIS. We will begin with silent demonstrations then commence marching. We will start from Britomart, Queen Street (outside Dick...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • No Problem for Henare & Jones, But “No Way” for Harawira
    “Just before the election I broke the story about the gutting of Maori Television’s News and Current Affairs department by MTS’ new CEO Paora Maxwell. I pointed out that Carol Hirschfeld and Julian Wilcox, two of the country’s most experienced...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Corruption: Positive developments for NZ but more to be done
    Global anti-corruption group Transparency International today released a report on OECD Anti-Bribery Convention enforcement and called for New Zealand to implement draft legislation to ratify the United Nations Convention against Corruption....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Government to Blame as Much as Council for Marryatt Payout
    The Taxpayers' Union is calling on the Government to fix the employment law regime that has forced Christchurch ratepayers to fork out $800,000 to former Council boss Tony Marryatt....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Unanimously Call for Commissioner to Arm Police Full Time
    In the wake of a series of recent armed offender incidents, delegates to the Police Association Annual Conference today called unanimously on the Commissioner to arm Police full time....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Bank gets behind NZ wildlife icon with sizable donation
    It will be easier than ever this summer for holiday-markers to dip into their pockets to support the yellow-eyed penguin....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • WorkSafe report raises concerns about asbestos
    The union representing construction workers in the Canterbury rebuild is surprised at WorkSafe’s conclusion that no action needs to be taken against EQC and Fletcher EQR over asbestos exposure in Canterbury homes. “This report was an opportunity...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Union accuses SkyCity CEO of misleading public
    Unite Union has accused SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison of misleading the public over the cut in hours for a staff member who raised the issue at the company's AGM....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Last Hurrah on the Taxpayer
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Hone Harawira spent up $54,000 on the taxpayer in his last three months as an MP, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “It is absolutely disgraceful that an MP managed to rack...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Press statement in relation to search of Nicky Hager’s home
    On 2 October 2014, Nicky Hager's home in Wellington was searched by police. Mr Hager asserted that documents kept at his house were protected by privilege, including because they contained information that might identify confidential sources....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • The Sam Simon arrives into Auckland for new campaign
    This morning Sea Shepherd ship, the Sam Simon, arrived into Auckland harbour after its journey from Melbourne. The ship and its 25 crew from around the globe have come to New Zealand to source supplies and prepare for the upcoming...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Low inflation – time for meaningful wage increases
    With inflation low, now is a good time for workers to negotiate for pay increases that outstrip price rises and deliver real increases in wages and salaries. “For too many people, real pay increases have been missing for several years...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Auckland Rates Rises Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland ratepayers will face an average of a 29 percent rates increase, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “These rate rises show that Len Brown's spending is out of control.”...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Protest at New Plymouth Oil and Gas Expo
    About 30 protesters from Climate Justice Taranaki, Frack-free Kapiti, Te Uru Pounamu Action Group, Oil Free Wellington, Frack-free Manawatu and the east coast protested yesterday outside New Plymouth's biennial Oil and Gas Expo at the TSB Stadium....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • FMA warns consumers about cold-calling investment offers
    The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is warning New Zealand consumers and investors to be wary of cold-calls asking them to buy shares or put their money into offshore firms....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Comprehensive plan needed to end child poverty
    Child Poverty Action Group says it is vital the newly re-elected National government takes a planned and comprehensive approach to reducing child poverty in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Metiria Gets Feed the Kids
    Yesterday the Speaker of the House advised that he had accepted my request to transfer my Feed the Kids (Education (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Amendment) Bill to Metiria Turei of the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • DIA undercover investigation leads to jailing
    An undercover Internal Affairs investigation has led to a Hastings man being jailed for three and half years....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
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