Written By: - Date published: 6:30 pm, June 6th, 2014 - 10 comments
There’s a wee bit of irony in showing a program on inequality on expensive subscriber-only TV; but nonetheless there’s an excellent new series on Face TV (Sky 83).
Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, May 23rd, 2014 - 29 comments
National are planning to merge a bunch of health helplines to save money. The 0800 POISON number could be scrapped leaving additional seconds or minutes until help is received in those most urgent of moments.
Written By: - Date published: 2:17 pm, May 14th, 2014 - 11 comments
Moira Coatsworth recently announced that last year’s party membership was the greatest in 30 years – ie, it is higher than even before the 4th Labour Government did such damage to membership numbers. This is a sign of rude health. And it shows in the quality of new candidates being selected.
Written By: - Date published: 10:56 am, May 7th, 2014 - 17 comments
We still don’t know why Joyce is pushing on with the move to shut Invermay, Dunedin’s impressive AgResearch centre, but it’s still not too late to stop him and the AgResearch board. Last week, one of the biggest breeds of sheep, Texel breeders voted no confidence in the AgResearch board. The petition continues to grow. Dunedin is […]
Written By: - Date published: 8:56 am, April 30th, 2014 - 50 comments
There is a major new economics tome out this year that’s sending waves through the economics community like none since Friedman in the 70s. It’s Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century.
It points out that under capitalism, we’re doomed to inequality.
Written By: - Date published: 4:06 pm, April 24th, 2014 - 107 comments
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
Written By: - Date published: 10:22 am, April 8th, 2014 - 21 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 9:39 am, March 10th, 2014 - 8 comments
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 […]
Written By: - Date published: 9:35 am, March 9th, 2014 - 33 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 11:08 am, February 11th, 2014 - 14 comments
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, […]
Written By: - Date published: 1:24 pm, February 10th, 2014 - 7 comments
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 […]
Written By: - Date published: 7:35 am, December 6th, 2013 - 109 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 7:45 am, December 5th, 2013 - 30 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 1:43 pm, September 3rd, 2013 - 12 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, August 29th, 2013 - 75 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 2:42 pm, August 23rd, 2013 - 20 comments
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 […]
Written By: - Date published: 8:21 am, August 14th, 2013 - 31 comments
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?
Written By: - Date published: 3:24 pm, August 13th, 2013 - 133 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 8:56 am, August 7th, 2013 - 9 comments
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…
Written By: - Date published: 3:23 pm, July 8th, 2013 - 146 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 2:21 pm, July 1st, 2013 - 82 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 12:05 pm, June 25th, 2013 - 48 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 7:11 pm, June 24th, 2013 - 17 comments
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 […]
Written By: - Date published: 9:54 pm, June 22nd, 2013 - 6 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 2:59 pm, June 17th, 2013 - 81 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 10:09 am, April 19th, 2013 - 16 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 11:53 am, March 14th, 2013 - 57 comments
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.
Written By: - Date published: 11:09 am, March 13th, 2013 - 25 comments
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.