web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

Centre for Inaccurate Studies

Written By: - Date published: 9:35 am, April 2nd, 2009 - 35 comments
Categories: welfare - Tags: ,

The CIS released a report [PDF link] today entitled Ending No. 8 Wire Welfare: Why New Zealand is Lagging Behind. Its author is Luke Malpass. Predictably, from the right-wing think tank, the paper is an ideologically driven argument for a more punitive welfare system. As is so often the case, it’s premised on the tired old assertion that New Zealand’s recent approach of supporting people from welfare to work hasn’t been effective. The paper claims:

New Zealand has in fact stuck itself out on a limb in order to be all carrot and no stick… [J]udging by the reduction of numbers on the [Unemployment Benefit] over the past decade, one could easily say that this approach has broadly worked… However, unemployment numbers only tell part of the story. [The sharp decrease in those on the main UB (dole)] has, however, been counterbalanced by an increase in those on the [Invalid's Benefit] and [Sickness Benefit].

Ah, no it hasn’t Luke. Take a look at that red line – total number of people on benefits. It has fallen almost precipitously over the last few years.

If this is the kind of policy “analysis” the CIS is doing it’s no wonder they struggle to get traction for their extreme right wing ideas.

35 comments on “Centre for Inaccurate Studies”

  1. MikeE 1

    Right Wing think tank my ass, when I went over there, one of the key speakers was the president of the Australian Labour Party (and leading Aboriginal Activist) Warren Mundine.

    I’d hardly call him a bastion of the vast right wing conspiracy.

    Oh, and his answer for aborigional poverty, private property rights.

    • Pascal's bookie 1.1

      Mike, your last line kind of ruins the act.

      • MikeE 1.1.1

        You suggesting that Aboriginal people should not be allowed to own the property they live on?

        The property that they have historically occupied for centruries. The property where even the police stations are legally speaking, squatting on due to aboriginal title laws over there?

        That was what Warren was suggesting…

        Or would you prefer the status quo, where aboriginees are not able to own their traditional lands, and they are instead held in a sort of “trust” by their state. Which means they cannot build on them, or do anything with them, instead beign forced to live many families to one house, in a state of constant dependance on government.

        What warren wants is aboriginal independance. Hardly a “right wing” idea I’d think.

        • Pascal's bookie 1.1.1.1

          You suggesting that Aboriginal people should not be allowed to own the property they live on?

          No.

          Are you suggesting that if his answer was to tell the settler government to fuck right off and allow the aboriginal peoples to have a sovereign state of their own, with whatever system of property rights they decided they wanted, that the CIS would still have him around to speak?

          Because that’s more to the point of whether or not the CIS is rightwing.

          • MikeE 1.1.1.1.1

            Would you suggest that appropriate?

            Would yousuggest the same thing appropriate in NZ?

          • Pascal's bookie 1.1.1.1.2

            Do you?

            If I did do you think the CIS would give me an invite to speak?

  2. Stephen 2

    That is a nice graph. Have seen it here plenty of times, but is there an updated version coming out soon?

    • all_your_base 2.1

      Yeah, we’ll do an updated one at some stage soon. Wanted to get up a quick reply.

  3. Bill 3

    Began scanning through that report and, well there was just too much in the way of tosh crying out to be ripped to pieces.

    So, I’ll just say this. Jobs and work are two entirely different concepts and confounding the two is at best lazy but more likely an insidious example of society coming to accept a particular and grossly disingenuous perception of our actions.

    All human meaning and worth boiled, extracted, reduced and finally squashed into an economic concept.

    To which my only response is: See Home Economus? See my arse.

  4. Stephen 4

    Oh, and his answer for aborigional poverty, private property rights.

    Don’t you think that’s why CIS invited him? To espouse right wing ideas?

    • MikeE 4.1

      Is allowing Aboriginees to own their trible lands “right wing” now…

      Is it right wing to allow the same thing for Maori?

      • Quoth the Raven 4.1.1

        I agree with MikeE it’s not right wing. Right wing would giving vast sums of money to a small elite like here in New Zealand with our settlements.

  5. Bill 5

    Began scanning through that report and, well there was just too much in the way of tosh crying out to be ripped to pieces.

    So, I’ll just say this. Jobs and work are two entirely different concepts and confounding the two is at best lazy but more likely an insidious example of society coming to accept a particular and grossly disingenuous perception of our actions.

    All human meaning and worth boiled, extracted, reduced and finally squashed into an economic concept.

    To which my only response is: See Home Economus? See my arse.

    (First attempt to comment disappeared into the ether. Apologies if this comes up double)

  6. Pixie 6

    Yes, he’s right, unemployment numbers do only tell part of the story, as do all discrete and selectively noted numbers. The real story is in trends, and in this context, the trend is firmly downwards: the number of people on benefits has dropped. Simple.

  7. BLiP 7

    This is the same Luke Malpass who reckons :

    . . SNIP . . . As in all things, it is easier to lay the blame at someone (or something) else’s doorstep than to acknowledge personal failure. The promotion of learned helplessness by more people becoming more reliant on state-provided payments and services is at the root of people’s unwillingness or inability to make healthy choices, not capitalism and underhanded marketers selling hamburgers and chocolate bars. . . SNIP . . .

    The logic goes: ill health is all about choice and that’s why its important choice be removed and people forced into work – its for their own good, you see.

    There’s not much about the incoming depression when there will simply not be enough work to go around. I guess the unemployed and solo parents will be required to report to foreign-owned multinational corporation gulags for their daily, heaping, helping of nutritious work. Yum yum.

    Whole thing looks like the thin end of the wedge for privatising both health and social welfare. Dangerous nonsense that needs to be monitored closely. The SIS could do worse than putting this outfit on the watch list.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      Wonder if Luke Malpass realises that that logic applies to the assertion that we need rich people as well. From my understanding capitalism requires dependence (read as poverty) and socialism (well, communism/anarchism) doesn’t.

  8. ak 8

    Sheesh. These geeks are almost beyond parody. At a time when the direct results of their core belief system are exploding in our faces and sending the entire world down the sewer, the CIStern uses its blood-money to flush out yet another beneficiary-bashing compilation of cherry-picked data and faeces-sprinkled neolib propaganda.

    Forget it boys. You can hire another legion of these “clever” Hitler-youthesque goons to churn out this crap till the cows come home, but your sorry portrait is currently smeared large and stinking on the world’s walls.

    Take a break: build some walls around your plastic mansions and leave it to the lefties to clean up your mess. Stick to what you know and enjoy. Ferraris and masturbation springs to mind.

  9. Stephen 9

    The SIS could do worse than putting this outfit on the watch list.

    That comes close to the kiwiblogger who called for Labour and the Greens to be arrested before they flee the country with all our money.

    • George Darroch 9.1

      But the Greens are watched by the SIS. That suggestion isn’t even parody.

  10. vidiot 10

    So with the exception of the unemployment benefit numbers, are any of the numbers on the other 3 benefits (DPB, Sickness, Invalids) down from what they were in 1990 ?

    And side note: Graph Title is Benefit Numbers 1999 – 2007, but the dataset in it is 1990 – 2007.

    The Dec 08 figure of 105,000 on the UB will add a spike to that chart, total beenfit numbers would be back up to mid-90′s levels.

    Also seems that late 90′s there was exceptional growth in both the invalids & sickness benefits – perhaps that’s a market we can target for future growth ?

    /snip “Figures from the Ministry of Social Development show the number of working age people on a main benefit rose six percent last year.

    The numbers receiving the Invalid’s Benefit rose 4.3 percent from 80,082 to 83,501 and the number on the Domestic Purposes Benefit jumped 2.2 percent and is now back over 100,000.”

  11. gobsmacked 11

    It brings to mind Voltaire’s line on the Holy Roman Empire.

    Not a centre. Not independent. Doesn’t study.

    • MikeE 11.1

      Obviously someone who hasn’t been there then, having been there, they are independent, their funding is kept at arms length from the topics, and are viewed favoribly by both the left and right in Australia. That said the left in NZ tends to despise them for some reason.

      And they do study, as evidenced by the research put out, and their massive library on the topics that they covered.

      Then again, what would I know, I’ve only visited the CIS a few years ago, in person, whereas you’re just posting on a blog. Obviously you are more informed on the issue.

      • Pascal's bookie 11.1.1

        Do they use peer review?

      • Ag 11.1.2

        Nonsense.

        It’s another silly right wing think tank because conservatives can’t compete in open, peer-reviewed debate, and instead of realizing they fail because they are wrong, they blame it on a left wing conspiracy.

  12. insider 12

    The way I read this, the focus on the fall in the total number of beneficiaries obscures some concerning up ward trends in some categories, so don’t get complacent.

    Seems a reasonable message to me as unemployment can be heavily influenced by global factors beyond a government’s control, whereas other beneficiary numbers may be positively influenced by govt policy, eg childcare support could reduce DPB payments as could enforcement of obligations on non custodial parents, training could help invalid payments.

  13. Stephen 13

    Talking to anyone in particular MikeE?

    That said the left in NZ tends to despise them for some reason.

    Probably something to do with it being stuffed full of classical liberals, as many interweb sources would imply.

  14. Stephen 14

    insider,

    Growing numbers of obese and elderly people would seem to be an important factor in rising numbers of the other categories. At a guess.

  15. tommy onions 15

    Anyone on the Left who views the CIS favourably is either a nincompoop or is not really on the Left.

    Members of the CIS and its little Kiwi think bucket are right wing ideologues who provide ‘intellectual’ justifications for the operation of unfettered capital. Unabashed by the dismal failure of their Hayekian creed they claim that the unparalleled mess that the ‘free market’ has got the world in was either because the market wasn’t free enough – OR – because the market was TOO FREE.

    I love the latter. Greedheads in the big banks bemoaning the lack of regulation -. ‘well you didn’t tell me I couldn’t create trillions of dollars worth of toxic debt!”:

    Further proof, as if it was needed, of the fact that you do not need intelligence to make money – in fact true intelligence, like integrity, may well be an impediment to making money.

    The CIS and all like it are the modern secular equivalent of the religious ideologues who conjured up and perpetuated the idea of the divine right of kings – to exploit and oppress.

  16. Jum 16

    Indeed it is an old chestnut – the numbers on to sickness nowhere near the numbers coming off the unemployment. All been said before. No doubt this is a new attack strategy on the vulnerable. Next step DPBs. Ho Hum.

    Now for how independent CIS really is:

    I was watching Breakfast and guess who popped up – Gerry Brownley, following neatly on from Jenni McManus (Independent Newspaper Editor) on the Financial report before Breakfast, both playing the same violin, Jenni McManus saying all our electricity ills started 9 years ago, Jerry Brownley that it was the fault of the previous Labour Government.

    That’s bad enough, cunningly setting up an orchestrated spin coup by one extreme right activist and a government minister.

    But in 2004, the CIS’s guest list of 25 gathered for breakfast and discussion on ‘The case for a flat tax’ and ‘MMP the right decision?’ at Diane Foreman’s home, included guest speaker Richard Epstein, NZ BR guest writer, Ruth Richardson, Roger Kerr, Rodney Hide, John Banks, Business Rotundtable Chair Rob McLeod, Jenny Gibbs, right-wing donor Michael Friedlander, National minister Don Brash and guess who – Jenni McManus. That meeting was all about getting Don Brash into Government as leader of the National Party and Prime Minister in 2005.

    Righties on this thread, don’t pretend Cis is anything but an extreme rightwing think tank, dedicated to overthrowing any sense of fairness in workers’ rights.

    PS John Banks as a super mayor over Auckland would indeed be championed by NAct. Super funding will be flowing freely in his direction for this.

    Speaking of forked tongue NAct supporter journalcysts, read the Captcha:

    ‘Ralston The’

  17. Strathen 17

    Did anyone actually read the whole report?

    ‘the paper is an ideologically driven argument for a more punitive welfare system.’

    Err… No, not ideologically driven. The paper compares NZ to international best practice, from countries of either left or right ideology. It appears that we as a country are lagging behind the rest of the world in what works to get people in to work (along with Ireland and the UK).

    The paper talks about the benefits to the individual if they work (bottom of p.4 and top of p.5). It then goes on to discuss how other countries have achieved this.

    The quote in the original post has been hacked out of context from the report to support the author’s ideological view. Read in context, with the figures, it makes a bit more sense. (See pages 8 & 9 of the report)

    ‘Take a look at that red line – total number of people on benefits. It has fallen almost precipitously over the last few years.’ This is also covered on p.7-8, ‘International Lessons’. The author doesn’t dismiss this entirely, but compares it to other countries throughout the report and what happened to them. It appears all countries total numbers of welfare dropped during this same time period, lending weight (proving?) this was affected by global conditions rather than a left or right government.

    I think the point is, whilst we have experienced a drop in welfare, it is not as significant as other countries around the world over the last 30 years, irrespective of their countries ideologies. Perhaps we should follow some of their best practice.

    The report even predicted all_your_base’s response: ‘We are among the few countries such as the United Kingdom and Ireland who do not attach meaningful reciprocal obligations to the receipt of benefits. Even the very generous and often held as virtuous Nordic welfare models have very strict and inflexible reciprocal obligations that would horrify many New Zealanders.’

    • Ag 17.1

      Drops in welfare rolls aren’t automatically desirable. Anyone that thinks they are does not understand why we have welfare.

  18. Jum 18

    Now let me see – the dpb is given to a solo parent to raise child(ren), Strathen is suggesting that the solo parent, usually the woman, has to be obligated to the state. Why can’t the other parent, usually the man, be obligated to the state. Better still, why can’t they both be obligated to the state. These breakups are never just about one person; the fault is 50:50.

    A millionaire I know ties up all assets into a loss accounting situation and pays just $50 per week for the state to be financially responsible for his children. Yet the ex wife gets all the agro from WINZ, from NZers, etc. Why?

    From that it also follows that if a business engineers an employee into losing their job through redundancy or fire at will bill, then both the business and the employee are obligated to the state. Again, the fault is 50:50.

  19. ripp0 20

    oops, html stuffup!

  20. Santi 21

    The study is valid. NZ has too many bludgers and people sucking off the state teat doing bugger all.

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Comparing the CMJ
    This is a graphical representation of just how much land we’ve turned over to out motorway network. The image below is of what effectively constitutes the Central Motorway Junction (CMJ). This is 49 hectares in size. It kind of reminds me...
    Transport Blog | 25-04
  • Remembering the Dead and Thinking of the Living
    More people are attending ANZAC dawn parades across the country than ever before and the harsh realities of past wars are becoming more widely known. We now know about the lost opportunities that could have avoided military conflict, the poor...
    Local Bodies | 25-04
  • March Madness 2014 results
    We already knew that rail set a new record in March by rising above 11 million passengers for the first time. What we didn’t know is just by how much it had passed and how the other PT modes fared. We...
    Transport Blog | 24-04
  • A sacred day
    There will be no politicking on this site on Anzac morning, even if John Key is an evil monster who must be stopped at all costs....
    Imperator Fish | 24-04
  • Fatah and Hamas – a marriage made in peace hell
    Rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas want to have another go at marriage.They can’t promise anything, but are willing to have a try in order to reinstate the dwindling legitimacy they are both suffering from their respective enclaves....
    Pundit | 24-04
  • Know your Tory fellow travellers and ideologues: John Bishop, Taxpayers Uni...
    . . On 19 March, I reported on the Board members of the so-called “Taxpayers Union”. With one exception, every single member of the Taxpayers Union Board was a current (or recent) card-carrying member or supporter of the National and/or...
    Frankly Speaking | 24-04
  • Three Songs For ANZAC Day
     Eric Bogle:  And The Band Played Waltzing Matilda  Eric Bogle: No Man's Land (The Green Fields Of France)  Redgum: I Was Only Nineteen They tell us that at Gallipoli New Zealand came of age as a nation. Well, if that's true, why is...
    Bowalley Road | 24-04
  • Labels for climate data
    “These results are quite strange”, my colleague told me. He analysed some of the recent climate model results from an experiment known by the cryptic name ‘CMIP5‘. It turned out that the results were ok, but we had made an...
    Real Climate | 24-04
  • Solemn Falsehoods: ANZAC Day, 2014
    Worthy Sons? Every ANZAC Day we tell ourselves that the blood sacrifice of Gallipoli marked the birth of New Zealand nationhood. But as the above poster attests, it was not our independence that George, the King Emperor, acknowledged but our...
    Bowalley Road | 24-04
  • US President Obama and Prime Minister Abe of Japan – Presser
    Press Release – The White House PRIME MINISTER ABE: (As interpreted.) On behalf of the Japanese people, I would like to express my heartfelt welcome to President Barack Obama, who is in Japan as our state guest. Barack and I...
    Its our future | 24-04
  • Shane Jones’ new job raises Ministerial interference questions
    The Public Service Association says the announcement that Labour MP Shane Jones is to move to a new ‘ambassador-level’ role...
    PSA | 24-04
  • Evidence lacking for Northland council amalgamation
    The Public Service Association has told a Local Government Commission hearing in Kaikohe that there is a lack of evidence supporting...
    PSA | 24-04
  • World News Brief, Thursday April 24
    Top of the AgendaObama Navigates Asia-Pacific Security Challenges...
    Pundit | 24-04
  • This is treason, sirs!
    A guest post by Captain Horace Cockwood, RN, on the problems besetting the Labour Party...
    Imperator Fish | 24-04
  • The Beatification of St Jonesy
    This has been even stupider than I thought it would be. The majority of the media commentary regarding Jones has been – as Malcolm Tucker would put it – borderline homoerotic. Morning Report featured Damien O’Connor, Clayton Cosgrove, John Tamihere, Chris...
    DimPost | 24-04
  • Photo of the day – ANZAC
    I don’t know if they’ve done it again this year but this from 2012 was one of my favourite things to happen in Takutai Square Photo are credited to oh.yes.melbourne...
    Transport Blog | 24-04
  • How to become a climate change denier (in 4 easy steps)
    Cartoon drawn by Joshua Cakeburger Drummond as a contribution to the High Water Project, and rooted in bitter experience, I suspect…...
    Hot Topic | 24-04
  • TV3′s The Nation: Antarctica and public understanding of climate change
    A few days have passed since Lisa Owen’s interview with Antarctic scientists Chuck Kennicutt of the US and Gary Wilson of New Zealand on TV3’s The Nation but I hope it’s still worth drawing attention to. Programmes like The Nation...
    Hot Topic | 24-04
  • Shane Gones
    So, Shane Jones is quitting politics.  The reasons given, according to Polity, are because he wants the Labour Party to embrace a wide range of opinions, and that that too many people have opinions he doesn't agree with, like forming...
    Left hand palm | 24-04
  • Australia welches on open government
    Last year, Australia announced that it was joining the Open Government Partnership. But now that Tony Abbott is in charge, they're backing out:THE Abbott government is reconsidering Labor’s pledge to sign Australia up for a major international transparency and citizen...
    No Right Turn | 24-04
  • A counterproductive waste of money
    That's the quick assessment of Britain's participation in the "war on terror":Britain's military operations since the end of the cold war have cost £34.7bn and a further £30bn may have to be spent on long-term veteran care, according to an...
    No Right Turn | 24-04
  • Shane Jones Nationalised
    Shane Jones is on Radio Live as I type this, explaining that he quit politics because he just couldn't be arsed etc.  "No reservoir of energy to..." as he put it.  Ridiculous.  Retirement at 54.  A career beginning and ending...
    Tumeke | 24-04
  • The ICJ orders Australia to stop interfering with witnesses
    Last year, in what was clearly the actions of a guilty government, the Australian government detained a former ASIS agent who was going to testify against them over their bugging of the government of East Timor, raiding his house and...
    No Right Turn | 24-04
  • Here’s what a real bloke sounds like
    Kelvin Davis3 hrs ·...
    Pundit | 24-04
  • So long Shane, thanks for all the ‘fush’
    So Shane Jones is off. Retired from politics he says. Couldn’t give 100 percent to the cause so he did what he thought was best for the Party.Shane Jones has always been a polarising figure and never more so when...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 24-04
  • The benefits of transparency
    Ministerial expenses were released today, and as usual, I spent an hour trawling through the credit card statements hoping to find evidence of Ministers rorting us. So what did I find? Nothing. No $1,000 a night luxury hotel rooms. No...
    No Right Turn | 24-04
  • Christchurch to use Auckland’s old trains?
    As the new electric trains roll out over the coming year or so, a question we don’t know the answer to is what will happen to the old diesel trains Auckland no longer needs. Of course we will need to...
    Transport Blog | 24-04
  • Access: Defective, deficient, deviant and delinquent
    As many NZ babies do, I developed eczema and asthma. My mother took me to various clinicians. I have vague impressions of kindly doctors with strange accents. In retrospect they were probably part of the Jewish diaspora - educated at...
    Public Address | 23-04
  • An FPP politician in an MMP world
    So, now that Shane Jones has gone, he's come clean about the reason: he didn't want to work alongside Russel Norman and the Greens. Which I think emphasises just how much of a throwback Jones was, and how unsuited he...
    No Right Turn | 23-04
  • Hard News: Friday Music: News from talented women
    As I may have noted once or twice, Janine and the Mixtape's Dark Mind EP is one of last year's overlooked local gems. Or perhaps not-so-overlooked now, given that her new video for 'Hold Me' was premiered this week on...
    Public Address | 23-04
  • Focus on housing costs, raise wages not interest rates
    "The increase in the Reserve Bank's interest rate, while expected, shows little imagination and will raise mortgage costs for home owners," says CTU economist Bill Rosenberg. “The focus should be on getting housing costs down, and raising wages to make...
    CTU | 23-04
  • One year on: progress made to prevent another Rana Plaza tragedy
    Date of Release: Thursday, April 24, 2014Body:  An official from one of the two global union bodies that negotiated the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety, currently visiting New Zealand, says that the Accord continues to make big steps forward to ensure...
    First Union Media | 23-04
  • Update from Dr.Gevil
    We wanted to share with you a little fun....
    Gareth’s World | 23-04
  • Matauri Bay: There are certain stories that get under your skin
    There are certain stories that get under your skin, stories that no matter how many times you hear them somehow strike you in a way that you never forget, stories that become a very part of you. The story of...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 23-04
  • Anit-fluoridation advertising deceptive
     Looks like the scientific fight-back against the misinformation coming from anti-fluoridation groups is having some success. This press release from the on-line Making Sense of Fluoride group. Anti Fluoridation Advertisements Rejected by The Advertising Complaints Authority Over the past week,...
    Open Parachute | 23-04
  • The Art of Letting Go
    via Porcupine Farm   While the big news with regard to the rebuild has been the scaling back of the Arts Precinct, this is just one part of a wider narrative that sees the grand plan unravelling. Since I wrote...
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 23-04
  • Joyce tells Otago to ship in more students
    Tertiary Update Vol 17 No 11 Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce is using threatened changes to university councils to bully the University of Otago to take more international students, says TEU national secretary Sharn...
    TEU | 23-04
  • New money for Māori innovation won’t cover cuts to Māori research
    Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, New Zealand’s Māori centre of research excellence is welcoming the  government’s decision to invest up to $2.5 million a year over the next two years in Māori-led science and...
    TEU | 23-04
  • UCOL staff given holiday but not pay rise
    UCOL staff got two extra days’ holiday they did not bargain for this week between Easter and Anzac Day, but what they really want is a pay rise. The polytechnic’s chief executive Paul McIlroy said...
    TEU | 23-04
  • Workers Memorial Day 2014
    Please be advised that there are three events planned to commemorate Workers Memorial Day (28 April) in Wellington. The media are invited to attend all three events.What When Photo:  ...
    CTU | 23-04
  • Shane Jones speaks out
    On 3news last night, Shane Jones gave a staged interview where he got some things off his chest. Not exactly a graceful exit, but there you go. Two of the things he said were especially interesting to me. Shane said:...
    Polity | 23-04
  • No Economic Rationale for $760m Warkworth Toll Road
    This is the fifth in a series of posts based on the Campaign for Better Transport’s submission to the Puhoi to Warkworth Board of Inquiry. The full presentation is over at bettertransport.org.nz In this post we look at the economic...
    Transport Blog | 23-04
  • iPredict Ltd 2014 Election Update #15
    Column – iPredict iPredicts 7000 registered traders continue to believe Winston Peters NZ First party will hold the balance of power after the election and allow National to govern. There has been a small gain to Act and the Conservatives...
    Its our future | 23-04
  • Photo of the day – Vulcan Lane
    Vulcan Lane alive with people Photo is credited to oh.yes.melbourne...
    Transport Blog | 23-04
  • Have your say on what Internet rights should look like
    Today I launched my Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill – NZ’s first ever bill crowdsourced by a political party. The launch happened live on Reddit, and I was joined in my office Joy Liddicoat (former Human Rights Commissioner and present...
    frogblog | 23-04
  • Michael Porter on Social Progress
    via CNN, Fareed Zakaria has a fascinating interview with Harvard's Michael Porter, architect of the Social Progress Index that was launched to great fanfare a little while back. New Zealand won the top rank in that index, and Porter's main...
    Polity | 23-04
  • Time running out to save uni councils
    There’s only a week left to have your say on the Government’s changes to university and wānanga councils. Tertiary Education Minister Steven Joyce has put forward dramatic changes to the way uni and wānanga councils are made up – removing...
    frogblog | 23-04
  • Another reason why we need an enforceable BORA
    Back in 2003, the then-Labour government, faced with the "threat" of an unpopular child-sex offender being released from prison at the end of their sentance, enacted the Parole (Extended Supervision) and Sentencing Amendment Act, allowing them to be detained for...
    No Right Turn | 23-04
  • Attack of the Return of the Revenge of the Night of Boris Johnson
    The Great White Shark is circling closer and closer ...Boris Johnson is to announce he will stand for Parliament at next year’s election – to avoid speculation on his future overshadowing the Tory campaign.Friends of the London Mayor say he...
    Left hand palm | 23-04
  • The Greens’ "internet bill of rights"
    Today the Green party released their draft Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill. The bill is a response to government interference in cyberspace via the GCSB Act, TICS, and the Skynet law, and is intended to limit government control. Interestingly, they're...
    No Right Turn | 23-04
  • Govt fails Southern Cross Forest workers
    The Government's failure to deal with problems in the wood processing industry has resulted in more needless job losses, Green Party forestry spokesperson Steffan Browning said today.Southern Cross Forest Products announcement of another sawmill closure brings the tally of closures...
    Greens | 24-04
  • Humiliation for Government in Chinese dictat
    New Zealand’s food safety systems should be respected by our trading partners, but instead the Government has been humiliated with the Chinese dictating the terms of our infant formula production, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.   “The Government...
    Labour | 24-04
  • Honouring our Pacific soldiers
    Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson and MP for Mangere, Su’a William Sio, will pay a special tribute to the many Pacific Islanders who fought in the New Zealand Armed Forces during the First World War in a speech he is giving...
    Labour | 24-04
  • Government inaction on power and housing to blame for latest rate rise
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei says today's interest rate rise, that will hit home owners and businesses, is a consequence of the government's failure to get a grip on electricity prices and the property market, particularly in Auckland."The Green Party...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Rate rise not needed if Government was doing its job
    Today’s interest rate rise wouldn’t have been necessary if the Government had been doing its job properly and targeting the sources of inflation, Labour says. “New Zealand interest rates are among the highest in the world, putting more and more...
    Labour | 23-04
  • Real independence needed in food safety
    The Green Party are calling for a truly independent body to regulate our food safety.Food safety Minister Nikki Kaye has announced the establishment of a Food Safety and Assurance Advisory Council as part of the Government's response to last year's...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Another report won’t help the East Coast
    The Government has a critical role to play in regional development on the East Coast says Gisborne-based Labour MP Moana Mackey “The release of the East Coast Regional Economic Potential Study highlights a number of areas of strength and weakness...
    Labour | 23-04
  • Another interest rate hike will punish mortgage holders
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei says another interest rate hike on Thursday will cost home owners an extra $25 a month on a $250,000 mortgage, on top of the $25 dollars a month from the previous rates rise, and she...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Green Party launches Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill
    The Green Party has today launched the Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill, New Zealand's first ever Bill crowdsourced by a political party.Members of the public will be invited to shape the proposed law, which will protect ten basic rights and...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Sanil Kumar has to leave New Zealand tomorrow
    The Associate Minister of Immigration Nikki Kaye’s decision not to intervene means kidney transplant patient Sanil Kumar must leave New Zealand by tomorrow, says Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Rajen Prasad. “Kumar, a plumber and sheet metal worker, was on a work visa...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Time to do the right thing for our veterans
    A Labour government will adopt the Law Commission’s recommendation to ensure all war veterans are eligible for a Veteran’s Pension, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Veterans are only eligible for the pension if they are considered ‘significantly’ disabled, or more...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Public servant is owed an apology
    Nigel Fyfe is owed an apology from the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie and Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully, says Labour's State Services spokesperson, Maryan Street. “The former MFAT official has now been restored to a position in the Ministry...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Laws for enforcing not trading off
    The idea that a Government department can give a nod and a wink to traders that it won’t enforce shop trading laws and for a Government MP to then claim it as grounds for a review of the law is...
    Labour | 21-04
  • Kiwis still paying too much for ACC
    Kiwis are still paying too much for ACC so that the National Government can balance its books, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “ACC Minister Judith Collins told Cabinet levies were too high but ACC’s proposed cuts would impact the...
    Labour | 21-04
  • Collins’ memory recovery raises further concerns
    Judith Collins sudden memory of briefing the New Zealand Ambassador to China about her dinner with a Chinese border official and her husband's fellow Oravida directors raises further concerns about exactly what was discussed, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. "This...
    Labour | 21-04
  • MP to attend progressive politics conference
    Labour MP Grant Robertson will attend the Progressive Governance conference in Amsterdam later this week. “This conference brings together Social Democratic parties from around the world to discuss how progressive politics should work in the post global financial crisis environment....
    Labour | 20-04
  • Storm fans fire service commitment
    Further damage from the huge storm that battered the West Coast was prevented by the great work of our volunteer Fire Service and locals will be extremely grateful, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “Our region has been...
    Labour | 19-04
  • Time for Ryall to fix mistakes and help families
    Families who won a long and lengthy Court battle for financial help to support their disabled daughters and sons are now facing a new battle with health system bureaucracy and need the Health Minister's help, Labour's Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Time for greater ministerial accountability
    The Green Party has today released a proposal to introduce a ministerial disclosure regime in New Zealand to improve the transparency and accountability of government.The proposal, based on the system used in the United Kingdom since 2010, would require all...
    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
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the price for Genesis far too low in a desperate attempt to beef up demand....
    Labour | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Associate Immigration spokesperson. “In the past 12 months, temporary...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Since 2009 resignation rates among sworn staff have...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand to revisit its decision to evict an essential community organisation in Christchurch with only eight weeks notice.Yesterday at the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence support services the organisation...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Auckland Council has implemented a by-law banning the use of psychoactive...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination after revelations that three out of seven properties sold in Wanganui tested positive for methamphetamine,...
    Labour | 17-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Before his departure, John Key said he would wait until all...
    Labour | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today.The report tabled in Parliament yesterday shows that total use of ozone depleting gases in New Zealand has...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Labour is determined to support and gr