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Politics bruises even Shane Jones

Written By: - Date published: 4:06 pm, April 24th, 2014 - 63 comments

shane-jones

While I know many on here aren’t sad to see Shane go, I think he’s a lost voice for Labour – and we’ll need others to step up into his place. I also think we might be a little less visceral and personal in our attacks on politicians if we were a little quicker to realise they are human.
Also: Shane Jones Media Watch

Upper Harbour exists.

Written By: - Date published: 7:12 pm, April 17th, 2014 - 17 comments

Paula Bennett proud to be a westie

The new electorate boundaries are out.

Some noticeable changes around Port Hills, but mainly only tinkering from the previous proposals.

Tim Watkin is wrong

Written By: - Date published: 10:22 am, April 8th, 2014 - 21 comments

pundit logo -square

Tim Watkin recently had a post over at Pundit, saying about why a 15% gap between Labour and National matters. His crux point is that in no MMP election has a party led by 15% and not formed the government. Unfortunately for Tim, this is demonstrably wrong.

Where ‘welfare reform’ ends

Written By: - Date published: 10:58 am, March 10th, 2014 - 25 comments

welfare-infographic300

Sheila Holt, in the UK, is in a coma for 2 months. She has also just been invited to “intensive job-focused activity” by the Dept of Work & Pensions.

Invermay: Meddling Joyce Ignores the Evidence

Written By: - Date published: 9:39 am, March 10th, 2014 - 8 comments

steven joyce idiot

My brother has posted across at Red Alert on Steven Joyce’s bungling oversight of AgResearch’s current $100 million restructure. The Crown Research Institute is New Zealand’s largest, and a recipient of generous Government support. Andy West, the former head of AgResearch stands to gain as head of Lincoln University from a plan that independent review […]

Pinning hopes on China

Written By: - Date published: 9:35 am, March 9th, 2014 - 33 comments

china credit card

Our export-led economy is a rock-star according to those on the right. Australia kept us going, and now, despite the EU still spluttering, we can fly because China will buy all our milk powder. But there’s a potential flaw in putting all your eggs in one China basket, as a number of BBC stories have been revealing.

Inequality for all

Written By: - Date published: 11:08 am, February 11th, 2014 - 14 comments

ceo pay

  There’s been an excellent Insight on Radio NZ on Sunday / Monday, looking at the income gap and the consequences for our society – the loss of social mobility, the loss of health (mental & physical) for all, the increased incarceration, drug use etc etc. There’s also been recently PBS coverage in the US, […]

Foreign exchange fixing “as bad” as Libor

Written By: - Date published: 1:24 pm, February 10th, 2014 - 7 comments

money into pocket

Something that doesn’t seem to have hit the newspapers here, but may turn out to have been significantly affecting little ol’ NZ is a growing forex scandal, mainly in the UK (as the centre of forex trading). The boss of the UK’s financial regulator has said the the allegations of rate-fixing are “every bit as […]

The value of Sick Leave

Written By: - Date published: 7:35 am, December 6th, 2013 - 109 comments

sick_boy

Business NZ says sick leave costs us $1.26 billion per year.  Some might say that illness costs us more than that, and that’s business paying their share, to look after their employees which will benefit the business in the long run.

Asset sale disaster

Written By: - Date published: 7:45 am, December 5th, 2013 - 30 comments

might river dam

The Government are lowering their lowest estimate for how much they’ll raise from asset sales. They’ve done a terrible job implementing a stupid policy - if you’re going to put your ideological blinkers on and do it, at least do it right. Now it must stop.

21st Century Leadership Election

Written By: - Date published: 1:43 pm, September 3rd, 2013 - 12 comments

logo-labour-square

As part of the Labour Leadership Election there is to be a ‘virtual hustings’ – an online forum for Q&A organised by Labour.  Scoop have agreed to facilitate, and are now harvesting the questions.

Key’s earthquake ‘fun’

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, August 29th, 2013 - 75 comments

hi-from-chch

The government suffered a major court ruling against it over their ungenerous Christchurch earthquake pay-outs – their 50% offer for uninsured red-zoned land was ruled ‘not in accordance with the law’. Brownlee promises to appeal and bury the Outcasts in debt; John Key threatens to withdraw even their 50% offer with the throwaway: ‘it’s been a lot of fun. If you don’t want to take the offer, that’s where it’s at’. Heartless.

Congrats to Kristine Bartlett & SFWU

Written By: - Date published: 2:42 pm, August 23rd, 2013 - 20 comments

KRISTINEBARTLETT

The Employment Court has issued a preliminary ruling on caregivers pay – saying that their pay should be compared to what it would be if their profession was male-dominated, not 92% women. Kristine Bartlett is the test case with more than 20 years’ experience and skills bringing her a $14.32/hr wage.  The Service and Food […]

More Beneficiary Bashing

Written By: - Date published: 8:21 am, August 14th, 2013 - 31 comments

welfare-infographic

The IRD writes of penalties and interest on tax debt almost as standard – along with a chunk of the actual tax. MSD will pursue you beyond the grave to get back loans because you can’t cover your living expenses. Why are we treating people and debt so differently?

Where our Assets have gone

Written By: - Date published: 3:24 pm, August 13th, 2013 - 133 comments

mighty_river08may13

Labour have OIA’d a Treasury list of where the money from Asset Sales has gone.  Hint: it’s mostly not schools, hospitals, or paying down debt like National said.

UK: Zero Hour Contracts

Written By: - Date published: 8:56 am, August 7th, 2013 - 9 comments

Martin Rowson 06.08.13

There’s a Guardian-led campaign in the UK at the moment over “zero-hour contracts” – contracts that guarantee an employee no hours, and often leave them on-call at a moment’s notice to fulfil the employers whim. They’re common here, but I don’t expect a major newspaper to run with it…

Government still doesn’t care about climate change

Written By: - Date published: 3:23 pm, July 8th, 2013 - 146 comments

climate-change.jpg

We have very good climate scientists in New Zealand, but the government isn’t exactly promoting them.

So I guess it shouldn’t be a surprise that they’re planning on more than halving the climate research budget from $10 million/year to $4.5 million.

What’s the holdup?

Written By: - Date published: 2:21 pm, July 1st, 2013 - 82 comments

generation_zero_whats_the_holdup_map

Generation Zero are a youth-led organisation who see climate change as their problem. They see zero fossil fuel use as 100% Possible in a sustainable Aotearoa. So they’re holding a nationwide speaking tour about it – asking “What’s the holdup?” on climate change action.

For Solar

Written By: - Date published: 12:05 pm, June 25th, 2013 - 48 comments

installing solar panels

There’s an issue for solar power about to hit: Standards NZ’s new proposed standard requires the use of a particular, untested, inverter which is not expected to even exist until July 2014.  The current 2005 standard on solar power production allows electricity lines companies to enforce their own set of standards onto independent solar power installers.

An unjust government

Written By: - Date published: 7:11 pm, June 24th, 2013 - 17 comments

tomscottwhoearnsmore

So the Ministry of Health has relented to some caregivers and is paying them something… but not others. Margaret Spencer has given up her life to look after her adult son, but gets no compensation for it. If she gave her son over to strangers to look after, not only would the MoH have to […]

Volunteers wanted!

Written By: - Date published: 9:54 pm, June 22nd, 2013 - 6 comments

student volunteer army

As National Volunteer Week draws to a close, let us continue to celebrate the 1/3 of New Zealanders who regularly do volunteer work in our communities.

Manufacturing Inquiry report

Written By: - Date published: 2:59 pm, June 17th, 2013 - 81 comments

manufacturing_inquiry_smallbanner

The parliamentary inquiry into the future of manufacturing has released its report today. I’ve not had time to read it, but it’s great to see a report by 4 out of parliament’s 7 or 8* parties, showing a united stance to one of our country’s biggest economic problems. 40,000 lost jobs in 4 years; the worst current account deficit in the developed world (overtaking Greece) – and a government that’s ignoring it.  We need some big solutions and a combined force committed to it.

Stealth Taxers

Written By: - Date published: 10:09 am, April 19th, 2013 - 16 comments

Tory Stealth Taxes

National, far from being their idealised “low tax party” are in fact the “stealth tax party”. While they’ve lowered the top rate of tax and the company rate, helping out the wealthiest, there has been regressive tax after regressive tax increase on the smaller hidden things.

English drained Solid

Written By: - Date published: 11:53 am, March 14th, 2013 - 57 comments

solid-energy-logo

Some great work from Labour yesterday as they got the documents showing Bill English being advised about Solid Energy’s predicted lower profits from a lower coal price  - and asking for a bigger dividend anyway.

Novopay: debt collection

Written By: - Date published: 11:09 am, March 13th, 2013 - 25 comments

novopay

Apparently quite a few teachers got tempted from the fold and voted for John Key in 2008… it’s hard to imagine many of them wanting to do so after the Novopay debacle. But Novopay seem determined to make sure of it. Not content with failing to pay large numbers of teachers, it’s now persecuting those it overpaid, even when they give the money back.

The Government must be crazy

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, March 1st, 2013 - 22 comments

asset sales pot hole

Come one, came all to National’s fire sale! See how fast we can flog off your assets! Low prices, great returns to foreign investors!

Regulate this!

Written By: - Date published: 8:14 am, February 28th, 2013 - 172 comments

hydroelectric power generation dam asset sales

If we can’t afford to buy the assets back, we should at least make clear we will regulate them severely and take the profit out of electricity companies…

Workers’ rights: too many steps behind

Written By: - Date published: 10:30 am, February 25th, 2013 - 30 comments

living wage

I’m a big fan of the Living Wage campaign. And I really liked the Herald’s series covering the launch week. But part of that coverage highlighted a big problem that I don’t think the Living Wage campaign will reach.

Inequality: even Treasury cares…

Written By: - Date published: 9:21 am, February 16th, 2013 - 62 comments

inequality

There’s a book I’ve heard about that I’m hoping helps push the inequality awareness barrow a little further this year.

Asset Sales delay?

Written By: - Date published: 11:11 pm, February 14th, 2013 - 42 comments

asset-sales-car-1200

The Herald reports that the Supreme Court will not meet the Government’s timetable for its decision on the Maori Council’s challenge to Asset Sales.

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

Written By: - Date published: 5:40 pm, February 13th, 2013 - 50 comments

bennywenda

Child Poverty, a high exchange rate and suppression of free speech. It’s that National Government again.

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    Labour | 22-04
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    Labour | 20-04
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    Labour | 19-04
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    Labour | 18-04
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    Greens | 18-04
  • Power prices soar on the eve of winter
    On the eve of winter as New Zealanders are turning on their heaters, power prices have soared sky high, Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer says. “Energy Minster Simon Bridges claimed in Parliament that prices were estimated to rise 2.4 per...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Workers can kiss goodbye to Easter Sunday off
    The Government’s decision to “reprioritise” scarce labour inspector resources by abandoning the enforcement of Easter Sunday Shop Trading laws means workers can kiss goodbye to a guaranteed day off, says Labour’s Associate Labour Issues spokesperson Darien Fenton. “The Labour Minister...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Businesses need to respect workers this Easter
    Businesses intent on flouting Easter shopping laws should face stiff penalties, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today. This Easter, at least one major garden centre chain intends to open on Good Friday despite this being in breach...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney's Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members' ballot. “It’s time the Government acted in the interests of families,” Sue Moroney says. “National has tried every...
    Labour | 17-04